If...

Jul. 5th, 2006 10:49 am
birthrightgreen: (Baby)
If Kartane SaDiablo had his way, I never would have been born. It was his habit, you see, to break a young witch, no more than 12 or 13 at the most, and keep her until he seeded her. Then he either terrified her into spontaneously aborting or had one of the Healers under his mother's thumb take care of it. Once the child was gone, he tossed the girl into the street to return to her family in shame or to find work at a Red Moon House.

For centuries that was his game and none of them escaped. None until Titian.

She didn't go home, and I've never known why. Perhaps the Priestesses at the Gates back to Kaeleer could not be trusted? Perhaps she thought her family would not accept me, though they have done so with open arms since my coming here. Perhaps she was ashamed, though she never showed such shame to me. She didn't go to a Red Moon house where they would have been reluctant to take in a pregnant whore, and he could have found her.

No, she ran and she hid in the streets. She whored herself for a pittance to keep us both fed. She taught me what she could to keep me safe. And she screamed her last breath to keep me safe, pulsing energy in the walls to warn me from our home when Kartane sent an assassin to finish that which he hadn't been able to. There was no reason to kill her except that she ran, except that she bore me, and she knew that was the risk when she defied him.

I never understood any of it. Not why she didn't go home where she would be safe. Not why he wanted me dead so badly. And most of all why she didn't just abort me and make her way to safety and away from him, able to slide into the shadows and rebuild a life with as few reminders as possible.

None of the men who took me ever seeded me. I was lucky, I suppose, though I always wondered if it was damage from the first time. But I swore if they did, that I would get rid of their seed. That I would not carry the child of my rapist to term.

Only now do I begin to understand. I feel the tiny flutter of life inside me, the consciousness awakening though there is nothing physical yet that should give such a feeling, or so they tell me. This child was conceived in love. Wanted by both father and mother. Her life will be safe in a way I never knew. But what I have come to realize is that none of that matters where she and I are concerned. Not who her father is. Not how she will be raised. Not where she will live. Only that she is there inside of me. She is part of me and I cannot dream of harming her. Mine to protect. Mine to love. That I will share those moments and duties with a man I love means that I am blessed, and that she will know the wholeness I would wish for her, but it does not effect my love for her one way or the other.

To feel such a thing is to know, finally, why Titian did as she did. I would do anything for this child. The streets again. Separation from my family. Hiding forever. Whatever it took to raise her whole and healthy and safe in this world. I finally understand my mother, and I hope that wherever she is, she knows that.
birthrightgreen: (tilted head - young)
It was decided. The man would make the house ready for us, and we would go in two days time. A home, warm and safe. School for me. I could read already. Mother had seen to that. But this Craft they spoke of...

Titian didn't talk about it. I know now, it's because she couldn't reach her own, and was too young to know what to do for me. Broken as she was, she couldn't teach me herself and she made barely enough money to see me fed. Tutors were an expense she couldn't dream of affording. But the man was going to pay for it, and he didn't ask her anything in return.

I practiced saying his name in my head as I lay in bed. Daemon. Sadi. Daemon Sadi. If I practiced other things in my head, that shall remain the foolishness of a ten year old girl that none of you need to know about.

All my practicing was interrupted by their voices in the other room.

"Who was her father?" Already that deadly purr told me to be wary.

"She has no father," my mother snarled back. It was her right. She could deny paternity. She'd never told me, that was for sure.

"Who sired her?" His voice hadn't changed tone.

Titian growled. That was never a good thing, and for a minute, I was scared for the man. I'd seen my mother kill. But then I remembered his eyes, and I knew that he couldn't be killed.

His voice was gentler. "Who did this to you? To her? Took you so young and then left you both like this."

"He doesn't know she exists. He can never know. Never." There was fear in my mother's voice and that scared me more than the rest.

I didn't know it then, but he could have just picked the information from her brain. For all I know, he already had. She knew that, too, of course. But for some reason he wanted her to say it.

Maybe he wanted me to know.

"Who was he?"

There was a long silence, and then finally, her voice again, defeated. Afraid. "Kartane SaDiablo."

Even I felt a thrill of fear at that. Dorothea's son. It was no wonder we were always so afraid. Hiding.

"I see." And he did. More than I did, then. All the reasons I had to be hidden. No one knew how strong I'd be, but if Dorothea knew she had a granddaughter who could grow to be as strong as I am now...I might not have been schooled in politics and Craft as I am now, but I knew that was bad.

That such a name would follow me. Haunt me. Her blood in mine. That taint. Hayll and then Terreille lives in fear of her, and we were no exception.

Only now I knew we had a reason.
birthrightgreen: (Without You)
Even after everything I'd been told, after Jaenelle's messages, after meeting the High Lord of Hell...even after all of that, a part of me still couldn't believe. I didn't believe travel like that was possible. And despite always being careful to finish the kill lest I run into one of my victims wanting revenge one day, I still didn't really believe in the demon-dead. Not that they were still themselves, still sentient, and living in the way that matters. Dead, but not gone.

Or mayhap I'd just hoped she'd been spared that. I think I thought it was bad, to make the transition to demon-dead instead of sliding into the Darkness. An in between world where they were trapped. Would you want to be consigned to live in Hell? (No offense, Uncle Saetan) At least, as I had heard the tales, the answer was no. No. I didn't care if only the strongest made the transition. The Darkness seemed preferable, and I wished that for her. That final peace instead of continuing agony.

When he told me what she was, that she was not only demon-dead but Queen of the Harpies, I struck out in denial and fury. She couldn't be. Not her. Not something so filled with hatred and rage. But harpies are witches who die violently by a man's hand, and that is what happened to her. To Titian.

The Hall is an odd amalgamation of the living and the demon-dead and a Guardian. Nowhere else does it exist. The dead are supposed to stay in the Dark Realm. They shouldn't keep following the ties of the living. But Saetan's sons, his friends, they still follow him, dead or not. And she was still there.

All those years, just a passage through a gate away. All those years, crying for her when no one could see. Missing her. Alone, save for Sadi and no matter how wonderful a friend he is, he's no substitute for a mother. For my mother.

I stood on the other side of the door, my hand resting there, feeling the pulse of the room, the power of the Black, of the Ebony, that seems to make the Hall breathe. My hands were shaking and I wasn't sure how to make the knob turn. In the end I had to use Craft. And there she sat, looking like I remembered her, only far more nervous. Fear still in her eyes, though perhaps of rejection not the horrors my father visited on her. A moment. Two. We stared at each other.

And then I was in her arms, and she was holding me and humming softly the songs she sang to me as a child. And for once, I wasn't alone.

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