Evil Death: Part Five
V. Letting Go
The room was decorated in pure white paint in true asylum style. There was an out of place bed with fancy pillows and a large gold comforter. A single window gave the room light and this window was covered by rusty black bars. In the corner, away from the stream of light shining in, was a grungy looking pink Kacheek.
Her fur stuck out in tufts and she was holding her sides as if in pain. She rocked slightly back and forth and her eyes showed no response to Eliv’s greeting. She looked as if she was bewildered and yet calm at the same time – at peace with the terror that consumed her day in and day out.
“Mother?” Eliv said once again, hoping to get some sort of response.
The large black eyes darted up yet no words came out of her mouth. Somehow, Eliv knew she wanted to be alone with him. Eliv looked behind him and saw his father standing in the doorway. “Can we be alone?”
“Yes, yes, sure. Anything that helps,” Henry said as he closed the door.
The click of the door closing echoed throughout the room. Eliv wandered over to the bed and took a seat facing his mother. “How are you?”
“Of course. Why would you talk to me? I just... I wanted to say I forgive you. I’ve had a lot of time to think over the past few years and I’m letting go. I’m not going to let one event control everything I do in my life.”
Eliv wasn’t surprised at the dumbstruck look that was returned by his mother. He sighed and put his hands on his knees. “Can...you tell me why you did it? Why did you kick my father out of the house and pass it off as a lie?”
Suddenly, the shape on the floor moved. Not a big movement, it simply changed its position so it was facing the sun that was pouring into the window. “Why are you troubled so?” The voice sounded like it hadn’t been used in a long time and sent a chill down Eliv’s back.
“Because...you left me on the street to fend for myself when I could barely tie my shoes and... I never understood why and that’s what has kept me awake at night trying to figure out why everyone left me. You, dad. What was wrong with me?”
“There had to be something. It wasn’t my appearance.” He paused as he said this and lowered his head. “I wasn’t always like this. There had to be something wrong with me.”
“Nothing,” was his mother's simple reply.
Eliv shook his head. “Mother, please. Give me some sort of straight answer. Why did you leave me?”
His mother was silent for a moment. “Because it was the right thing to do.”
Without any other words, Eliv stormed out of the room, slamming the door behind him.
Henry was waiting for him outside the door. “How did it go? Can you understand what she was saying?”
Eliv sighed and nodded. “Yeah, I understood her perfectly.”
“Oh, good!” Henry sounded delighted. “What did she say? Did she say why she wanted you here?”
Eliv shook his head and made his way down the long white staircase with the Bruce by his side. “Not exactly.”
“Oh... that’s not good,” Henry said. “I assume you’ll try again later though, right?”
“Maybe,” Eliv replied distantly. “I need to take a walk. I’ll be back soon.” Without listening to another word Henry said, Eliv walked out the door and into the bright sunshine of Neopia Central.
Eliv hid behind a gnarly bush, barely breathing. It was a miracle he got out of the house and he wasn’t about to mess up here. Ilere was only steps behind him and he had to duck into the bush when he heard the Faerie muttering words under her breath. These words obviously had to be a spell or incantation of some sort.
Eliv could feel a few painful scratches on his back that he must have acquired when running through the woods. The Kacheek had never expected to last this long with his getaway attempt. It surprised him that he was even able to get out of the basement.
Eliv’s train of thought stopped as he heard a twig crack behind him. He panicked. How did Ilere get back there? But, before he made a dash for it, he came to his senses. Ilere was powerful. It simply could’ve been a trick to make him run out into the open and give the Faerie a chance to capture him.
Another twig cracked and Eliv’s reflexes jumped again. He still stood in place, however, and confirmed with himself that it was a trick.
Suddenly, he felt a hand groping his neck and another covering his mouth to stifle a scream. “Shh...” said the mysterious voice. “Come with me. I can hide you from The One.”
Eliv turned around to see a Mynci standing there in a circus jacket. “Who are you?” Eliv whispered.
“My name is Arnold and I work at the Deserted Fairgrounds not so far from here. Our psychic, Syvuss, said that someone was wandering the woods hiding from The One and sent me out to help you and bring you back.”
Eliv looked back from Arnold to the empty pathway. Maybe Ilere had given up. But Eliv doubted so. She was probably waiting, getting ready for Eliv to think it was safe and expose himself. He turned back to the Mynci and nodded. “I’ll come.”
“Good,” Arnold said. “Follow me.”
The pair made their way off into the woods.
Eliv made his way down the cobblestone street that led to his mother's house. She had moved sometime after he was abandoned and all the sights around Eliv were unfamiliar. He had taken quite a long walk around Neopia Central, looking at the many people who passed him by, whispering his name under their breaths. No one dared to approach him, however. He had made a name for himself as ruthless and brilliant and no one was about to see if this fact was true.
His mother lived in a elegant townhouse that was painted a very pristine white, a totally different shade than what was in his mother's room. There were quite a few windows looking out onto the street and Eliv tried to pinpoint which one was his mother's but didn’t know the house well enough to do so.
Eliv walked in without knocking. After all, it was partly his house. At least by blood. Henry was sitting in the living room, which was the first room you walked into when you opened the door. The living room was set up with two couches and a large coffee table. Up to the left of the living room was a large white staircase which led up to the second floor, where a few doors with various bedrooms and bathrooms were. One of them, off to the far left, was his mother's.
“How was your walk?” Henry said, his voice taking a slightly darker tone than it was when Eliv left.
“Good,” Eliv replied. “I thought a lot of things through and I think I’m ready to go talk to her again.”
“That’s great,” Henry said, though his still carried the same depressing demeanor.
Even though Eliv could see that something was wrong with his father, he made his way up the stairs. He didn’t want anything to get in his way. He was ready to sit down and talk to his mother and get straight answers out of her.
He opened the door and saw the Kacheek sprawled out on the bed. She jumped up when he saw her and scurried to the corner of the room like a rat.
“Hello, Eileen,” Eliv said. He had decided to not be personal in the conversation. He was going to address her as a regular person.
The Kacheek bit his lip. She knew exactly what he said and how he meant it.
“I know what you’re doing but I really don’t understand why. I’ve had time to think about this and I think I finally figured out what you’ve been doing. Why?”
Eileen stood up straight and looking Eliv in the eye. “Because.”
Eliv scoffed. “Don’t. Don’t play your little game with me. Why have you been lying all this time? What satisfaction do you get out of sitting in this room all day, pretending you’re out of your mind only when someone actually comes in here?”
Eileen said nothing and backed against the wall.
“Give me some answers!” Eliv screamed, slamming his fist against the wall and penetrating it. He tugged his hand from the wall and stared at his knuckles, which were cut up and raw. He ignored this and looked back towards his mother.
She was shaken up. Quivering, she started to speak. “I didn’t want your father to leave me. We had hit it off so well again after all these years and I could sense some discomfort between us. I needed to make him stay here. There was nothing else I could do. I needed to do this because... because I didn’t want to be alone.”
Eliv stood firmly. “Why did you abandon me?”
His mother looked down at her feet. “It was too much. I couldn’t handle you. I had too much on my plate and I needed something to throw out and you were it. I regret the choice with all my life now and, if I could go back all these years I would’ve never left you. But I was stupid and still young at the time. You were beginning to grow so mature...”
Eliv took a deep breath. “But... why didn’t you come and find me? After you realized what a big mistake you made...”
“It was too late. I could’ve never found you,” Eileen said, walking towards Eliv. “I’m so, so sorry.” She went to put her hand on his cheek and he recoiled away.
“Why... why did you make Dad leave?”
“It was the best thing to do at the time. It was a bad decision, just like all the other ones I’ve made. I was simply doing what was best for you. I swear I was...”
“Yeah, I bet it was,” Eliv said, biting his lip. “Goodbye, Eileen.”
Eliv opened the door and turned back as his mother said one more thing in a piteous whisper.
“Please don’t tell.”
Eliv slammed the door and walked out of the room, tears rolling down his face. He stormed down the staircase and looked in the living room. Henry wasn’t there.
“It doesn’t matter...” Eliv muttered and walked out the door knowing it was the last time he would see his mother.
To be continued...