Kaleidoscope’s Past 2
Everyone of the Hiyuma clan was dead. Since all the houses were ablaze, perhaps the village had been set on fire.
Seeing that, Father paled and ran home.
What we saw was Mother’s body buried under animals.
I was sure animals risked their life to protect Mother. Lying dead on top of Mother was a deer, rabbit, cat, dog, and various other animals.
Beneath them, Mother was dead while still holding a small pigeon.
There was a large wound on her chest. She must’ve been cut with a sword, and apparently it was a fatal wound.
The pigeon held by Mother took off. As the only survivor, the pigeon circled in the sky, reluctant to part.
I couldn’t think about anything.
I had no idea what was happening.
I didn’t understand at all why Mother was dead or covered with wounds.
Mother who saw me off the previous night was slightly scared but otherwise healthy, and her complexion wasn’t bad either.
However, the complexion of Mother lying among animals was deathly pale, and no matter how much I talked to her or shook her, she didn’t wake up.
Father was staring at Mother in shock and suddenly he raised a bestial scream.
He fell on his knees and cried aloud as he clung to Mother. Seeing how much Father loved Mother, the tears I had been enduring overflowed.
I clung to my dead Mother together with Father. She was frighteningly cold, and even though I didn’t want to, I had no choice but to admit she had died.
Eventually, Father stood up and began to silently dig a hole to bury Mother and the animals. Although I wasn’t used to it, I emulated Father and helped.
After everything finished, Father went to check the state of the village. I didn’t want to be left alone, so I followed him.
When I saw it again, I could really only call it hell.
It was a world of death where no one was alive. There were bodies in burned houses, but they were so charred that I couldn’t even tell who they were.
Father and I checked them one by one, and after confirming that there were no survivors, we left the village together.
During that time, Father didn’t utter a single word.
The night of that day Father spoke to me.
We were camping in the forest near the village. I was sitting near a bonfire and absentmindedly listening to owls’ voices, and in response to Father’s call I raised my face.
“It was the King of Sahaja who attacked the Hiyuma. He wanted to make us his subordinates all this time. Because he couldn’t do that, he eliminated the threat. That’s probably what happened.”
“The King of Sahaja. The King attacked us?”
Told of our enemy, I looked at Father in confusion.
“Yeah, there’s no doubt. There were numerous weapons with the crest of Sahaja scattered around the village. They must’ve come from the soldiers who attacked.”
“… Was Mom killed by those people?”
As Father agreed, I understood.
Surely, last night Mother learned from animals that Sahaja troops were approaching the village. And knowing she’d be a burden to me, she sent me alone to where I’d be safe, to Father.
As Mother said, her untrained legs were slow. If by any chance a soldier had found us, we wouldn’t have been able to escape. Mother feared that.
Mother knew she’d die. Despite that, she said nothing and sent me off. To eliminate the possibility of us dying together.
“I’m… I’m sorry…”
Because I was there, Mother couldn’t escape. When I noticed that and apologized to Father, he shook his head.
“Why are you apologizing? Your mom protected you. You have to live instead of her. Do you understand?”
“You and I are the only living Hiyumas. We even lost our chief… Lux. We’ll have to live while hiding these eyes.”
I nodded to Father’s words.
If the King of Sahaja had known there were Hiyumas alive, we’d have surely been targeted. To stay alive, we had no choice but to avoid being seen.
Let’s do my best to live together with Father.
Saying that, I went to sleep.
And, the next morning.
Father was gone.
I couldn’t see Father anywhere. Half-crazed, I desperately searched for him. Fortunately, Father left behind a letter, so I was able to immediately know where he was. I turned pale when I read it.
‘I loathe the King of Sahaja for killing your mom. I’ll kill him. I have to kill him. I’m sure I’ll come back after dealing with him. That’s why please live. That’s my and your mom’s wish.’
Of all things, Father went to have a revenge on the King of Sahaja.
He left his son, me, in the forest alone. Even though on the day before, he vowed to live on together with me.
Despite saying that, to tell the truth I understood.
Father deeply loved Mother. He couldn’t stand losing her and had to kill the culprit. That’s why he went.
Alone, I waited for Father in the forest.
Fortunately, I’d received training as a Hiyuma from Father, so living in the forest was a child’s play.
And since I started spending time alone, similarly to Mother I somehow became able to understand what birds say.
‘What is it? Chin up!’
It was clearly nothing but cooing, and yet suddenly a voice resounded in my mind. I was really surprised at first, however, there was a precedent of Mother. So while I was surprised, I immediately understood the reason.
I’m sure a trait I’d inherited awakened for some reason.
I certainly had Mother’s blood in me. That’s why.
Feeling the connection with Mother from what she’d left me, on that day I cried alone in the forest while thinking of her.
Mother had been lamenting that she couldn’t go back to her hometown. But, after meeting Father and giving birth to me, she stopped feeling like going back. I cried recalling how gentle Mother had been as she told us that she wanted to stay with us.
Since then, there was always some bird at my side, comforting me in my solitude.
If I had been truly alone, I’m sure I would have been unable to stand it and gone insane. It was thanks to birds that I could keep waiting for Father.
However, I spent half a year in the forest since then.
Father never returned. It was easy to predict what his ending was.
―― Father failed.
It’s almost impossible to kill a king of a country without any information alone. Father too knew that. Still, he had to go. Still, he went… and probably had the tables turned on him. Or perhaps he didn’t even reach the king.
After all, Father didn’t have a master. He couldn’t use the power of the Hiyuma freely.
Still, I waited another half a year.
I hung onto the sliver of hope. However, Father never came back, and I finally roused myself and alone left the forest for the town.
I felt a void in my chest.
Mother was killed without even being able to resist.
Father was killed after he swore to take revenge and ultimately failed.
Nothing mattered anymore.
I didn’t feel like following Father to take revenge. It was impossible even for him. If I had tried, the history would have repeated itself.
I just wanted to live.
The life Mother gave me. The life Father gave me.
I didn’t care about the Hiyuma clan. This life saved by both of my parents became everything to me.