Enna is with Youko and the Feudal Era is in war! By the way, where the heck is Shadow?!
(Sequel to Demons and Dog Ears)
It’s a war out there, literally. I am Lady Enna, once priestess of my village. It has been a long hard time for us in the Feudal Era of Japan. I’ve been in hiding. The temple I used to live in was attacked by demons that have lost control. Youko, one of my sister’s friends, has taken me into hiding in a shack far away from the war. I’ve been living here for about a month or so. I’m usually all alone in this dirty, rotting shack that I’ve learned to call home. Youko leaves early in the morning and I’m by myself most of the day. I miss my family and friends, but most of all the man I love, the amazing half dog demon, Shadow. I’ve known Shadow since we were small children. Just recently we’ve had somewhat of a romance, well, that is before the war started. I’m not quite sure what this war is truly about. Youko says its demons revolting against The Alliance. The Alliance is what bonds human and demons. It keeps peace, and promotes the friendship between us. I don’t understand why anyone would want to go against it. There have not been any problems before this. I just don’t know.
This shack smells so awful. The wood is rotting and it’s giving off an unpleasant odor. Then whenever Youko comes back it smells like blood and sweat. It’s revolting to live in these sorts of conditions. I hate it. The roof leaks when it rains. I've had a cold for quite some time. The floor isfrigid and the futon I’ve been using to sleep on is nearly just thin unripped seams. It's like I’m just a pauper now, instead of a priestess. I’m forced to cook and clean for the one man I hate, Youko. It’s torture.
He is back now. The room is now filled with the scent of blood. I can see the red stains soiling his usually silvery tunic. He strides over to me with a look of scorn on his usually calm face. I am at the makeshift table we made with a large piece of bark and two smoothrocks. I feel nervous when he approaches.
“You’re on your own now." He says, "The war is spreading and the demons will be here anytime now. They’re going after any sort of power, and will surely go after you. Leave this place now." hegrins evilly, “Save yourself, or just make it easier and give up.” He sneers at me with a look of hatred in his eyes. “I saw a glimpse of Shadow; at least I’m pretty sure it was him. He was going into the village. He's practically begging for death by doing that. The Alliance is now based there, and the demon troops are going to burn that whole village down. It’s a simple way to smoke them out and watch them burn." He looked pensive for a moment, but continued on,"That’s why I got out of there. Your sister has run off with her husband Korbin. I suppose they’re also going to go into hiding for their own sakes.” He walks around the table and stoops down next to me. I shiver, feeling his cold aura surround me. He whispers into my ear. “Now go pretty priestess. You’re on your own.” He then stood up and looked at me with disdain. He then departed the shack. Leaving me cold, lonely, and hungry on the dirt floor. I was meant to die here and now.
For a while all I could do is just cry for what I had lost. I’d lost my petty form of protection, my family, my friends, and Shadow. There was only one thing to do now...Stop Shadow before the demons attacked the village. I wanted to survive this war and have children and start a family. I was only 16, and had my whole life ahead of me. There was no way I was going to let this war live my life any longer. So, I packed what few belongings I had, which was a long bow and a few lonely arrows and my ankh necklace I got from Shadow as a gift. I changed into my last clean pair of priestess clothing and left the shack I had been nearly shackled to for almosttwo months.
Outside, the summers wind was cold and harsh. The wind made my long, black, un-brushed hair whip my face. It stung and tears welled up in my eyes because of the pain. I was far out in the country and I really didn't know what direction I was going. I was so lost and alone. It had been dark when Youko had taken me out to the shack a few months ago, so everythingI did remember was distorted in the black of the night. I sighed and looked off into the distance; I could see the valiant mountains that always seemed to inspire me. I sat down on the soft grass, this part of the country had not been affected by the war and I was glad. Such beauty should not be destroyed or cut down. It should be revered. This is the basis of the Shinto religion, so naturally, as being a religious leader I tend to think long and hard about my religion and how it really does affect me in real life. I am pleased with the way I live back at my life at the....Well, once temple. I wondered if I would ever work as a priestess ever again. I shook the doubt out of my head and stood up and began to walk again. The wind has died down a bit and off in the distance I can hear running water. I speed up my pace and followed the sound to a river.
It was the river that would lead me back to the village. A river ran through the outskirts of the village, and when it rained a lot it sometimes flooded the village. The one thing that sometimes tormented and angered me was going to lead me home. I sat there at the waters edge for a while. I washed my face off with the cool water and instantly felt revitalized. I even meditated for a while, thanking the spirits of the river for leading me to it in my time of need. I stripped down and lowered myself into the water, cleansing and purifying myself. This ritual made me feel like I was finally home, at the temple where I belonged. Below me, I could see the carp nibble at the weeds and some tried to nibble at my toes. It did not hurt, it tickled really. I felt so in tune with my spiritual side; a feeling that I had deprived myself of for months. Soon after I re-dressed, and readied myself to follow the river back to my home.
Night fell fast andI knew I couldn't be outside. Demons would be lurking in every corner, just waiting for some innocent girl to kill. If I didn't get out of there I would be that innocent girl whether I liked it or not. So, I started to run towards the soft glow of the village. I came into the sight of the village a while back. I wasn't too far and if I ran I could make it there easily. As Iran the colors started to run and I felt really dizzy. I started to slow down right as I came to the village.
It was daybreak and I was wrapped up in a warm futon. I sat up, now realizing where I was. I was at Shadow's house, in his bed. I looked around and sure enough, there he was. Shadow was on achair in the corner of the room his long red tipped hair softly landing in locks across his gentle face. He looked like an absolute angel when he was sleeping. He had a light blanket covering him and in his arms was his blade. I smiled softly and lifted myself out of the soft restraint of his futon, and crawled across the floor to his chair. His dog ears perked up and he woke to the sound of my crawling. He blinked a few times to get his vision into focus. His brown eyes shone in the soft sunlight that had penetrated through the rice paper sliding door.
"Hey, beautiful. How are you feeling?" Shadow lifted me up onto his lap. I blushed a bit. "Fine. I'm just fine now that I've seen you." I answered. "That's good. You've been really waging war on yourself. You and that fever of yours." He smiled and softly kissed me on the forehead. "Good, you feel cool for once. Maybe you're all better." He grinned and smoothed my messy bed head hair down. “You look so cute half asleep.” He said. My stomach growled in return. I held it, hunger pains were the worst. “Hungry, much?” He asked, and I nodded. “Good, because I made you breakfast. Its nothing elaborate, but it will fill you up, nonetheless.” He left the room and soon came back with a bowlful of white rice and chicken. He handed me a pair of chopsticks and I began to eat ravenously. It tasted so good. I didn’t remember the last time I had eaten like this. Wait, when was the last time I ate? I thought about this as I ate and I then realized.
‘This is not real. It is a lie. I am never going to see Shadow again.’ I thought.
“Shadow, I thank you for your gracious hospitality, but I have to leave now. I can not afford to start living in my dreams. I need to live my dream, and for that I need to wake up. I promise I’ll see you soon.” I took a deep breath and everything started to fizzle out, I blinked my eyes and I was on the cold ground. I cannot believe that I fell asleep while running. I groaned and rubbed the sleep out of my eye. The sun was beginning to rise, and the clouds were turning a purplish-pink. I was groggy and it was hard to stand up. Maybe the Shadow in the dream was more real than I realized. Maybe I did have a fever. I sighed and lifted myself off the soft, yet cold dirt. As I stood up a dizzy spell hit me again. No, it wasn’t a fever that was making me feel horrible… It was a large demonic aura that I could sense. Demonic auras have their own sort of feel, compared to the normal human aura. Demonic auras are far stronger than a human, and when I sense them there is a sharp metallic taste that fills my mouth, almost like the taste of blood.
‘The demons are close, very close. I just hope to all the Kami that I can find Shadow before they do.’
I rolled up my baggy red pants to the knees. This way, I could maneuver easier. I sauntered through the village.The village was a ghost town. The dirt from the road rose when the wind blew, causing a small dust storm. I covered my mouth and nose with my sleeve, and kept moving towards the almost over-powering demonic aura. The blood-like taste filled my mouth, and I almost choked. I started coughing and doubled over in pain. My chest started to compress, and I coughed harder. I groped for air. I coughed again and this time I spat blood.
'Oh good, Kami. Help me.' I prayed.
"On your feet, Priestess. This is not your place to be."
I looked up, as my coughing fit died off. It was a member if The Alliance. I could tell by the crest imprinted onto the man's shirt. I looked him over; he was a demon for sure. I could tell by the white hair and the blue eyes...
"Ferret?" I questioned. I looked him over twice. This man was one of the men, other than Shadow, who visited the temple often. We liked to talk a lot, even though he was a bit shy. We had grown to be close friends over the years I had worked at the temple.
The demon looked me over, and suddenly bowed at my feet. "My Lady!" he gasped. "I didn't recognize you! This war has changed you....Your beauty is prominent, but masked in matted hair and a blood stained shirt." he rose to his feet and looked at me again. "What has happened to the most influential woman? She seems almost jaded and lonely. Like a kitten abandoned. What has happened to the brightness in my Lady's eyes, they too have dimmed...." His voice trailed off.
"War changes everything and everyone, Ferret." I said while looking at the ground.
"My Lady couldn't have spoken more truly." Ferret said, "If I live through the war I hope to see your face, my Lady." He smiled kindly at me, and it warmed my heart. I was glad to have met such a good friend.
"I know what my Lady wants. Shadow has just left the base. I hope my Lady and Shadow will come back safely. If you don't I hope you will be reincarnated and find happiness in your new life. I will pray for it."
"Thank you, Ferret. Which way did he go?" I asked
"To the direction of the mountains." Ferret replied.
I thanked Ferret and ran towards the mountains. The demonic aura growing thicker and thicker as I did. I then caught a familiar aura. A aura that felt like jumping off of Mont. Fuji and whispers in the dark, the aura I knew best...Shadow's. I saw the demon troops just over the horizon. I gasped as I saw Shadow walk to the troops. What was he doing? Had Shadow also left me for the war? I hid behind a nearby tree, watching his every move. I saw the troops stop only a few feet from him. Shadow had his blade drawn and he was in a defensive stance, with a look on his face saying...Bring it on.
Shadow was going against the demon troops! I gasped and tried to count all of the demons in the large crowd. I estimated a good 500 demons all together. I gulped, there was no way he could take all those demons on all alone. All was quiet, then Shadow and his blade ran into the demon troops. I screamed and began to run. I couldn't let Shadow die! Not on my life!!! I ran harder than I ever had in my life. I covered 30 good feet in the matter of seconds. I lost sight of Shadow in the legion of demons. Suddenly, the troops parted, and I saw Shadow. He was hunched over and bloody, but he was still alive. I let out a sigh of relief. Shadow just couldn't just die like that, I knew him way too way well. Shadow would put up a fight till the death. It made me proud to see him alive. I stood back a few feet from Shadow, and put a protective barrier around him and myself.
Two figures came out of the troops. Shadow's father and brother. As they appeared, I could feel the core of the aura. I felt the blood taste fill my mouth....All around me... I started to throw up blood. I quickly regained control, and stood up straight. My blue eyes concentrated on the three demons.
"Won't you join us brother?" I heard Shadow's brother, Phantom, speak that. "Our family will be un-stoppable."
"Not on my life, Phantom!" I heard Shadow cry out. Shadow charged at his father and brother, his father backed into the troops.
'What a coward.' I thought.
Shadow and Phantom's blades clashed and blood filled the air. I became scared for Shadow's life and I ran up beside him. I could smell the mix of blood and sweat on Shadow. My eyes welled up with tears. Phantom advanced on me. His eyes were reflecting the evil and insanity he held inside.
"You love him, don't you, Priestess?" Phantom asked with a look of malice, "Would you die for him or would you live for him? Would his death make it too painful? Suicide is frowned upon by the Kami. Though, in your case you may not go to hell. Be as lucky as to be reincarnated into some sort of tool. How ironic would that be?" He came closer and I stepped back. He wrapped his arms around my waist and looked down at me, "What would happen if innocence died?" I ran out of his grasp. I was about a good 10 feet behind Shadow now. I looked at the crowd of silent eyes of demons;every last one of them as evil as the next.
"Hah! You can't even keep a girl by your side, brother!" Phantom spat at Shadow. Shadow looked at the fire-damaged ground. They must of set fire to all the fields and grass. You destroy beauty, you destroy power. I ran up in front of Shadow. I attempted to shield him with my arms from Phantom. I could see that even Phantom's words hurt Shadow.
"Just please, please.....Please stop, Phantom...Don't hurt him anymore....Let us be..." I cried. My tears flowed down my face, wetting the dried blood, making it flow once more. Phantom just smiled. Fear struck my heart. I couldn't move. My mind was the only thing that was working, my limbs wouldn't move, no matter how badly I wanted them to. I Then Phantom simply lifted his hand. I could hear a slow singeing sound and could smell burning flesh coming from behind me. I turned to face Shadow. He was looking at his wrist, and it slowly went to his waist and he unsheathed his blade. I could see his eyes start to glow a reddish color. I pleadingly looked at Shadow. Something was very wrong.... Tears were flowing down Shadow's face. Demons never cry... His movements were strained and awkward. I suddenly felt frozen, as I watched him... His blade was over my heart now. I took a deep breath and called his name, as his blade plunged into my chest.
I fell limp to the ground. I could feel the warm fluid leave my body, and tears flooded my vision. I was dying. I was really dying....
I had enough strength left to lift my head to see Shadow. I softly called his name again. He snapped out of the trance Phantom had put him over, and I grimly smiled. My death was near. Shadow swiftly put his blade at Phantom's throat.
"Do you intend on killing me, brother?" Phantom asked without any fear in his voice.
"No...Phantom, I'll never be like you...Because of that, even though I was born a half demon, I WILL DIE A HUMAN!!!" I could feel my limp body being picked up. I could see him re-vert to a human form. I saw him look back at his brother.
"What are you doing, Shadow?! You fool!" Phantom yelled. I saw Shadow grab Phantom's blade and plunge it into his heart.
"This way....I can find her....So she won't be alone..."
I could feel the life drain out of myself and Shadow. I quickly said my last prayer before drifting to the welcome sleep of death. I prayed to find him once again...
"I never lived in fear. I knew I'd die another day.I never viewed my life as something slipping away." Avenged Sevenfold- Unbound