30% A Bit of Short Stories / Chapter 3: Light

Chapter 3: Light

The once pristine green battlefield now laid bare; grey, black, red and singed. Bodies of the fallen decorated the ground. Their blood created a flow of life. One soldier remained. Dropping to his knees, he tossed aside his sword, hope drained from him. A dark void of emotion swept through him. Why was he doing this? Why was he still fighting? He stared ahead mindlessly as the dark beasts drew near him.

Was there anything to fight for anymore? His mind drifted to a church; the stained glass windows played scenes of the Crucifixion. Red carpet rolled up to the podium. A girl in white, holding a bouquet of flowers, turned to look at his approaching form. Her veil concealed her face, but he knew. He always knew. With shaking hands, he reached out. "Anne !" He cried desperately, "Anne."

The vision around him started to shrink turning black. "No, No!" He ran Screaming to her. As he ran, the smaller and farther away she was. Looking at him, the lips beneath the veil moved. "I'm waiting for you Vas." Anne fell backward, stained glass windows appeared all around them, depicting scenes of a hand of darkness reaching for the light. Anne fell right through a set of stain glass windows. The stained glass shattered and the sound of glass breaking echoed throughout the area. He tried to reach for her before she hit the ground. The broken glass transformed into water droplets cushioning her.

The stained glass around him exploded. Vas jumped back making a sweeping motion with his hands. He realized mid-swing that he did not have his sword. When the realization dawned on him, the glass pieces exploded into feathers. The feathers started to drip blood. A light silver blue sword appeared in his hands, throwing him off balance. Anne was on the cushion of water droplets floating to the top of the cathedral. Her hands rest in a prayer position. An angelic voice, but not the voice of Anne called out to him. " Vas, Vas why do you deny me? Why do you deny what you do?"

"Who you do it for? You know why you are doing it?" The woman in the wedding dress transformed. No longer the silhouette of the woman he always dreamed about. A young woman who held herself with a royal demeanor stood before Vas. Her dark hair and sharp eyes took in his details, as he took in hers.

"Who are you ?" He blinked. Trying to comprehend the woman in front of him.

She circled him, poking and prodding.

"Hey stop that," he cried in alarm.

She stood back. " It's okay, you know. It's okay to want to give in."

"What, "he blinked, and to himself, he thought, 'What is she talking about?' Vas glanced around uncomfortably before he spotted the pews to his left and right. Sitting down, he stared at the floor, dropping his sword. His fingertips pressed together.

"Hey," the woman wandered over to him.

"It's okay," she sat in the pew behind him staring ahead.

"You know I met people. Not just Christians. Good people of different faiths." Vas's voiced mellowed. Tears started to drip from his eyes.

"I have met people who believed, who didn't believe, who lost their faith, who were just finding their faith."

She nodded humming.

"These people bled, smiled, danced and sang. These people fled, cried, screamed, and begged. They lost people, and they died. Every time and every night I saw their faces and I lost hope. " Vas continued shaking.

"It's alright." She tapped his shoulder lightly. "It's alright," she gently grabbed both of his shoulders. "Hey, look at those feathers."

"Huh?" He glanced to the side, Watching the feathers that still dripped blood.

"Each drop is a person who died. Each water droplet that lifted me up was their suffering ." She released his shoulders, pulling her left arm in close to her chest, making a fist. "I feel it." Her eyes went downcast. "I feel them. Every wound, every tear, all of their pain." Walking away from Vas, she stood in the center of the room.

Vas stood, picking up his newly acquired sword. His hands still shaking. Vas's body sagged. He studied the room while turning his attention to the strange woman. "Who are you?", He hesitantly began approaching her.

She spun around the room as the cloud of droplets began to rain down, drenching her. " I am old but new. I am... I am light."

"Light!?", Vas jerked back.

Light nodded, circling him again. "Light."

"Why is there so much suffering in the world, Light? Why do I have to fight continuously, when all is lost." His broken tone only added to his solemn demeanor.

"You fought because you understood the consequences if you didn't. You fought for this," Light conjured up an illusion of a little girl running to her father delightfully screaming, "Papa." The father had his arms wide open. When the girl reached him, he swept her up in his arm.

The image ended, and another began. A group of merry travelers sat around the campfire. Each passing around a bottle, talking and laughing. Children ran around the adults, playing a game of tag. "You fight for them."

The image suddenly turned horrible as a beast of the night attacked the carefree group. The mothers quickly swept up their children trying to get away. The monsters went after everyone. Vas picked up his sword slashing at the illusionary beast. " Stop this." The last mother covered her child with her body. The beast gnashed its teeth, tearing into the mother's back, as the child screamed. The mother reached out to Vas. The illusion ended. " Why would you show this ?! What do you hope to achieve?!" He pointed his sword at Light. " Why do you have to show me how frail everything is?! ".

Light moved side to side, pounding her fist into her hand. "To ... show you.. .to show that someone means something to someone." Light nodded to no one.

"Those at the campfire, you knew who they were, didn't you? You knew their stories, their voices, and their faith. You were that child who survived."

Vas turned his back to her, looking ahead to the podium. " You said someone means something to someone. So everyone to you, in general, matters. Is that the reason I fight? I fight for those who matter."

"You fight for everyone because they exist. Because they exist, the people and creatures of this world matter. You fought for those who existed, who threw down their lives. Who perished, who survived."

"What about the ones who do not exist yet," Vas asked her.

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"Them too, You fight for their possible existence."

"Are you saying I fight for the future too?" Vas began to pace back and forth.

Light nodded, and Vas's mind returned to his body on the battlefield. Beasts of the dark hung in midair before him. The creatures let out a sound of rage. The monsters soon lunged at him.

Vas quickly dodged, grabbing his sword. Vas narrowed his eyes, finding time to stand. His blade started to glow. Light balls began to shoot from his blade. The balls of light transpired in an area beside him, forming Light. She smiled at him. " You do not fight alone for the future. " A blade formed in her hand. She pointed it at the beasts.

The beasts squirmed away, taken aback. A sudden, gravely, a wispy voice spoke. " I will devour you Light. For, once you will be blown to smithereens, I will rule overall. "The beasts of the dark formed together, creating one creature. A massive three-headed dragon. Light rushed forward.

The Dragon swiped its massive black claws at her. Light dodged, and Vas joined the fray. One of the dragon's heads snatched up Light. The dragon head bit into Light, crushing her spine. She smiled as the dragon swallowed her, blood leaking from her mouth.

"I win," the dragon roared.

Vas stood back, eyes dropping to the ground. He stepped back, for a moment, tempered his focus, then lunging forward.

"Why continue." The dragon roared.

"Because there is still tomorrow. Because there is still someone who matters to someone!" Vas dodged and drove his blade into the dragon's thick green scales.

The dragon roared as it's stomach started to stretch and move on its own. Beams of Light shot out of its belly, and Light reemerged, shooting off into the sky. The dragon laid, torn apart, on the ground. The pieces of flesh, pulsing like a beating heart, moved to reform the dragon. He snatched light up again, only to have its jaws blown apart. "What the!" The Dragon roared in agony.

Light's voice rung out, but her lips remained motionless. "You can chew on me all you want, but you can never destroy the light. Light is eternal just like darkness. Light's light may dim. And you may snuff the flame of light out. But light will eventually burn Even when the darkness seems to consume all. There is always that one flame that burns." With one final blast, Light ended the dragon and vanished. Vas dropped his blade. "Finally it is over." He closed his eyes. Maybe I can finally dream of that time. "Anne."

"Just as Light is eternal, Darkness is always eternal." A female covered in a black cloak approached the sleeping Vas. " Be forewarned, for the defeat of darkness is always just Momentary. It is ever looming and ever-present. It only takes one seed for it to plant a field. " The mysterious woman dropped a small glowing purple seed into the ground by Vas's head.

"Darkness doesn't hide; it seeps in slowly. Your battles will now be of the mind and the physical world. The mysterious woman disappeared.

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