Chapter 1: Human.
A young boy laying on the dirt in the centre of a bustling town cried out as a foot came stomping down upon his chest. The townspeople watched on as this usual everyday occurrence took place. There was nothing they could do to intervene, so instead, they watched on in silence.
"Really? Is that all you have? Aren't you supposed to be the emperor's son? I thought it would be a little interesting to fight you. But I guess you are just a bastard child after all." A boy with dark curly hair mocked him as he spat out bits of mud from his mouth.
The mocking hurt, but it wasn't anything he hadn't heard before. As the victim of bullying, he knew that he was a failure, yet it didn't bother him. A few of the townspeople agreed with a chuckle and watched as a group of boys much bigger than the one lying on the floor gathered around to beat him.
"Ugh," He coughed again as he was kicked in the stomach.
He grunted in pain once again as the bullies leaders boot now pounded against his chin. His teeth slammed directly onto his bottom lip that was previously trembling as he tried to hold in his pain.
But that was as much pain as he could handle. His teeth cut swiftly through his own lip, and he screamed out in agony. They all hesitated for a few seconds when they saw the young boy with his face buried in the mud as a pool of blood began to form on the ground beside him.
"Oh, stop the crying. The emperor would be ashamed if he saw his son in this sorry state. Maybe he would even completely disown you?" A taller boy wearing a black and gold cape said with a chuckle after hearing the scream.
"Hey, You have to remember he is just the son of a whore. You can't expect him to have a fraction of the talent that his father has. He would be lucky if he could get a job sweeping the streets in the future. I don't know why he doesn't give up this hopeless dream of becoming a warrior. It's pathetic." Another boy who was a little on the chubby side said to the boy wearing a cape as they looked down at the pitiful sight below them.
"That's right. Wasn't his mother just some slave that the emperor used as a plaything for a few nights?" The curly-haired boy laughed after remembering an essential detail about the young boy they were kicking.
"What!?" The young boy looked up with tears in his emerald green eyes before slowly stammering to his feet. The aura around his body changed drastically. What was before a weak and timid boy now stood tall like a man who had seen countless battles.
"Who permitted you to stand!? Sit back down, you goddamn whores son!" The curly-haired boy who had kicked the younger boy in the face causing his lip to split in two, shouted as he saw that he was no longer afraid of them. He then immediately brought his arm back before punching out towards him.
The young boy wiped the blood from his lip before running towards the older boy and ducking underneath his punch. But his body was too slow, and the boy landed a blow on the side of his cheek. Though it was also too late for the older boy.
The young boy with honey brown hair stood with his back to the group of older boys, standing tall as the curly-haired boy cried out in a shrill voice when the bone in his nose snapped in half.
The older boy fell backwards after a loud crunch echoed out, and blood began to flow from his nose as if a dam had just been opened. The older boys looked at the emperor's bastard son with fury and nodded their heads with eyes as sharp as daggers before running towards him.
"Just what is going on here?" A voice shouted out as a boy with long black hair stepped out to see what was happening. His appearance alone seemed to stop everyone in their tracks.
The four boys looked back and forth at each other, bowing their heads down and getting down on one knee.
"Prince Octavian! We're sorry for blocking your way. We were just out, minding our own business, when this son of a bitch attacked us. We didn't have any choice but to defend ourselves." The older boy who had yet to fight grabbed the one with a broken nose to show as proof of their accusation.
The dignified prince took a look around the scene with eyes that pierced their way into the souls of anyone who caught even a glimpse. No one dared to meet his gaze until he eventually narrowed his sight on the four boys and the injured child standing with a large gash on his lip.
"You there." He pointed his finger at an old lady who was standing with two young girls in the front row of the crowd.
The woman flinched upon realising that he was pointing at her. And then took a slight step back as Prince Octavian leaned towards her ear and whispered.
"Tell me what happened, honestly. Or else… Well, I don't think I need to tell you what will happen if you dare lie to me." He said with a threatening tone causing the woman to gulp in fear. Prince Octavian was not much older than the other boys, but the fear that people felt upon seeing him was something only second to the emperor himself.
"Yes, your highness. I was here from the start and what I saw was those four boys first began to provoke Prince Kalon, who was trying to buy medicine from my store, by calling him names.
Prince Kalon first ignored what they said, but they then all gathered around him and started to beat him mercilessly. He didn't even have the chance to fight back. But only when they let go of him and mocked his mother did he stand up for himself. That was when he punched that older boy in the nose." The old woman rushed to finish her explanation to Prince Octavian and then stood by as he smiled sinisterly.
"Well, that is only because-!" The caped boy began to shout as he heard the old lady sell them out to the prince.
"Silence! I didn't say you could speak." Prince Octavian turned and shouted at the boys so loudly that everyone nearby covered their ears to keep themselves from going deaf.
"You attacked my younger brother and then lied to… I should kill you where you stand, but I can't be bothered explaining to your mothers why you died for beating up such an unfortunate life form. So break your own legs. That will be your punishment for attacking a member of the royal family." Prince Octavian said to the group of boys, who all hesitated after hearing his demands.
"But that's just-" One of the boys began to say, but before he could finish his sentence, Prince Octavian vanished within a cloud of black mist and appeared behind them all as loud cracks echoed out, followed by cries of pain as the four boys fell to the floor with their legs giving way beneath them.
"It's over. Everyone, go home. Anyone who remains here by the time I count to ten will suffer a fate worse than these idiots." He turned and announced to the crowd that remained. Before he even had time to say the number one, all of the people vanished. Even the boys with broken legs had been taken away, leaving the town centre completely empty.
"What do you have to say?" Prince Octavian turned to ask his younger brother who's lip had turned purple and swelled up, making it difficult for him to speak.
"What?" Kalon asked, confused for a few moments before the air was forced out of his lungs as his older brother's knee struck him in the stomach.
"Wrong. You are supposed to thank me for saving you. I didn't have to, but if you were beaten to death in front of so many people, it would have been embarrassing for me. Now, what do you have to say?" Prince Octavian smiled as his younger brother fell to the floor and struggled to breathe.
"Thank you for saving me." Prince Kalon struggled to breathe but still managed to say thank you to his older brother, who was smiling sadistically after seeing his younger sibling in such a pathetic state.
"Excuse me!?" He shouted before stomping on his brother's hands.
Prince Kalon clenched his jaw to hold in his howls of pain that was edging on crying out. But he knew that if they did, it would only lead to more of a beating.
"Thank you for saving me, Sir. I am indebted to you for the rest of my life." Prince Kalon replied to his older brother's outrage, which seemed to satisfy him, something he could guess from the smug look forming across his lips.
"That's better, And you had better remember that statement. Now get your ass up and go home. I don't need you causing any more shame to our family. Father won't be merciful forever, so think about your actions before you do something so shameful again." Prince Octavian demanded before kicking him in the ribs and spitting on the floor beside him, and turning to walk away.
Prince Kalon fell to the floor as he saw his older brother's silhouette fade into the distance. 'I would rather be a human than a beast like you.' He thought as he heard something hit the ground beside him.
He looked up to see the old woman that Prince Octavian had threatened was standing above him.
"Just take it and go. If you lay here all day, it will be bad for business." She said with a harsh sounding voice like he was just a mere insect or a stray dog.
Kalon looked to where he had heard the sound to see a bag filled to the brim the medicine he had tried to buy before he was ganged up on by the older boys.
"Thank you." He grunted before grabbing the bag and then walking in the opposite direction.
Hello there. If this is your first novel of mine you are reading then I am glad it is this one. I have been working on it for a while behind the scenes and thought that now would be the perfect time to share it with you for the spirity contest.
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