Light that grows within eternal darkness
The twelve year old boy known as Tiger, slowly began to stand and as he did his strong and compact muscles tensed. His short black hair moved through the air as every cell in his body admitted a deadly and almost demonic aura.
His emotionless black eyes scanned the nothingness that surrounded him. He turned to his right, then to his left, but all he could see was darkness. I'm dreaming again. He thought to himself in relief.
The boy had long ago lost count of the countless times he had had this dream of nothingness. A dream that once long ago disturbed him had now become comforting to him.
The dark nothingness of the dream had become comforting to him to such a degree, that before he knew it. He found himself craving the emptiness of this dream.
This one dream had become he's only refuge from the things that haunted him, it had become the only place where he could forget his troubles, his burdens, his brothers but most of all, the fragments of his horrific memories.
He slowly closed his eyes as he paused for a moment and listened to the silence, a beautiful silence, no screaming, no crying, no begging, just pure and meaningless silence. His eyes slowly opened but this time they were flooded by emotions.
Many emotions passed over him, but only one remained and that was his misery. His handsome yet roguish face was warped in anguish as hot water gathered at his eyes. The boy looked down at the nothingness he stood upon and looked at his own reflection.
"How long till I'm crushed by this weight, this crushing burden" he said out loud to his own reflection, as pain and heat sudden spread threw out and attacked his entire body. He shook fiercely as he felt his heart twist and break, smacking his right hand over his chest in pain.
"I'm... pathetic" he said as a silent and pain filled tear slowly slide down his cheek all the way down to he's jaw, until it finally dropped and vanished into the darkness that existed under his feet. The darkness began to ripple as if it were water that had been disturbed by his tear.
The boy froze as the darkness once again stayed still under him, but this time revelling something he had never seen before. Replacing his reflection was a dark and almost demonic shadow that now looked up at him.
The boy's heart began to race as an evilly twisted smile began to spread over the shadows face. The boy shivered in his tracks as he looked upon its maddening grin. "Who are you?" he asked just before a horrific feeling invaded his heart.
Suddenly words began to materialise over the shadow, he watched as they materialise word after word until finely it was done. "I am the real you" those were the words the young boy had read out loud to himself, right before the shadows smile grew larger and even more maddening.
In an instant, the shadows arm reached out from the darkness and enveloped his entire right leg, right before pulling him into the cold and ever consuming void of darkness that once only surrounded him, but now consumed him.
The boy woke up in a cold sweat and took a slow and deep breath, his mind slowly calmed as he realised he was awake. But his heart quickly sank into despair as the thought hit him; he was once again awake and forced to face reality.
"You're finally awake Tiger", he instantly recognised the voice and slowly sat up as he looked towards his brother. "How long was I out Keeper?" he asked as he saw the worry in his brothers light green eyes. He slowly watched as his dark black, long hair brushed against his shoulders as he began to stand up to his full height of five feet and two inches.
He wore old greyish rags that had been stitched together with the number and letters 30,872-pt on the right side of his shirt right above he's heart, as did all those in this hell whole. Tiger looked into his brothers handsome and worried face and was once again reminded that Keeper really was one of the better looking ones out of him and his brothers.
Tiger quickly put on a fake aura of calmness as he smiled humorously towards his brother, "How long was I out?" he asked as he slowly sat up and looked around the large orange tent they were in.
Keeper slowly smiled as he felt relieved from the fact that Tiger seemed to be in good health. "You've been out for about half a day or so Tiger... it seemed like you were having quite the nightmare sir."
Tiger was once again reminded of he's predicament as he looked into he's brothers eyes and saw it once more. With just one glace he could see it, how much Keeper relied on him, how much he worshipped him.
He always hated those eyes, those eyes that haunted him, that forced him to live, that forced him to act strong. In the end it was those eyes that were destroying him, those eyes that he despised. "Can you blame me for having a nightmare in this place brother?"
He said as he almost cringed from the pain in his gut. Tiger didn't know why but as of late there was a sharp and disturbing pain in he's gut that continued to grow stronger as the days went by, he simple prayed that it wasn't an omen.
As Tiger looked at his brothers smiling face he couldn't help but wonder about his dream. For the first time in his life, his dream, his sanctuary showed him something other than just darkness. Why did the dream suddenly change? What does it mean? What was that thing? He thought to himself as he slowly sighed.
Knowing he didn't have time to think of such things he chose to push it all back to the back of he's mind. In the end he had a job to do and weather he liked it or not he was the only one that could do it.
"Shall I give you the usual report, sir?" Keeper asked as he walked towards Tiger and handed him two pills.
"That won't be necessary; I need to check upon everyone anyway. They can give me there reports themselves" he said as he grabbed the two food pills that were given to them by the demons in order to keep them neutrishes enough to survive.
Tiger quickly swallowed the pills that kept his stomach empty but also kept him from feeling hunger. As the pills went down his throat he couldn't help but feel the desire for real food. God what I'd do for an apple right now he thought as he felt his mouth water.
"As you wish sir. Then I best be on my way." Keeper said as he began to walk towards the end of the large orange tent.
"Wait" Tiger said as he watched Keeper turn back around towards him. Once again Tiger plastid on a perfectly fake smile of humour and joy, "Good work. I couldn't keep this place running if it wasn't for you"
Keeper couldn't help but smile with joy; he always felt such happiness when the person he admired most in the world complemented him. As keeper smiled like a fool and looked at Tiger. He couldn't help but be reminded why he was there leader, why he was there light. In the end he was the only one who could truly make them smile and laugh in this hellish god forsaken place.
"Not at all Tiger... we couldn't have done anything if you weren't here. In the end you're the one that keeps us going." Keeper said innocently towards Tiger not knowing that those words always haunted him more than anything else in there prison.
Tiger laughed with humour that he didn't feel. Every word of praise Keeper said towards him felt like another knife being plunged into his broken and shattered heart. A heart which he cursed the gods for giving him. If only he didn't care, if only he didn't feel. But he did, and because of that he would always help them. Whether it was killing him from the inside or not.
Once again Tiger pushed all thoughts to the back of his mind, he didn't have time to pity himself, nor did he have time to rest from his daily tortures. "What of the "Fallen"?" he asked carefully as he watched Keeper.
"I was just going to check on them myself. But I thought it would have been best to check your condition first." Keeper said as Tiger playfully sighed and shook his head side to side.
"Well there's no need for you to worry about it anymore, I'll go check on them myself. After all it's best I start to get back to work... make sure everything keeps running smoothly, ok?" he said in a friendly and playful tone as he continued to smile.
"Of course sir" Keeper said right before leaving Tiger alone in he's tent. The very moment Keeper left the tent, Tiger almost screamed as he held onto he's gut.
The pain was becoming more and more unbearable, he felt like he was going to lose he's mind. This is defiantly going to be a bad day. He sarcastically thought to himself as he suddenly had a strange sensation to laugh at the pain he felt growing in his gut.
"I don't have time for this" he said in a horsed and pain filled voice. He had to be strong; he couldn't afford to show weakness, he didn't have time to have a mental break down. "Just... a little longer. Just need to hold on a little longer" he said in an attempt to console himself.
Tiger slowly breathed a deep breath and let it out as he regrouped himself. Once his mind felt clearer and the pain in his gut partially resided, he slowly stood up and once again, just as he did day in and day out. He plastered a fake joyful and cocky smile on his face right before leaving his tent, and just as he always did, he wondered if he was leaving for the very last time.