The Darkness and the Boy

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Lor was once a Prince however a coup overthrew his father and now he awaits his fate in a prison cell, fearing the darkness that hangs over everything.

The Darkness

The darkness was absolute, menacing and entirely devoid of light in a way that darkness rarely seemed to be.

It was the type of darkness that stole your calm away with its silent oppression. The kind that left you choking back tears and fighting to maintain a sense of sanity because in darkness like this there was only you and your fear, and one of them had to grow. Humans need light to grow. Fear does not.

The darkness was not however entirely devoid of sound, a pained pleading could be heard, it was a sound that the prisoner trapped in the darkness was making. "Please!" the cry was not accompanied by tears yet but the prisoner could feel them growing closer with each word and with each silence. Lor could feel his sanity slipping away as he spent his days and nights completely enshrouded in darkness.

A former prince, Lor had been disturbed to hear of his father's dethronement, although perhaps not surprised. His father had been a poor king to the people, and Lor often thought that it was only the fervent efforts of Lor's elder brother and the king's advisors' that had kept the kingdom together.

Merely holding the kingdom together had not been enough however, and it brought Lor great sadness to know that his brother, as the crown prince was in all most likely dead now. But Lor was not the crown prince, nor, at the age of only ten summers, was he at an age where he could be a danger to whoever now held the throne. Instead he was merely a nuisance to be sent away to the dark, and though Lor was trying to be strong he was so very afraid of the dark.

"Please," the boy again pleaded, time had slipped away from him here in the darkness. The only sounds being those he made, the jangle of his chains and the keening of his voice. "Please," he repeated, and the darkness seemed to swallow his voice. He'd lost count of the times he'd repeated this single word. He had still not wept yet but he could feel the tears building and building. His hair was disgusting and had grown long, leading Lor to believe that his stay down here had been extensive. His one word pleading had changed nothing and that was wearing on him. At seemingly random intervals he'd hear the gate of his cell slide open and he'd crawl by feel to find a tray of cold unappetizing food, at equally random intervals he'd here the sound of people trotting closer and he'd redouble his begging but always the steps would pass him by. A product of his own despair perhaps?

"Please," the boy begged over again voice cracking , but at the silence that again answered him he finally broke down and uttered the words he'd been choking on, "It's dark, I'm afraid." and with that confession the tears fell at last.

They fell quickly and silently and Lor slid down to rest upon the ground of his cell. Lor understood why his father lay dead somewhere, and he understood why his brother had likely met the same fate, but he did not understand why they should torture him so. He was only ten and would have been happy to go away from the kingdom never to return if only they would relieve him from this oppressive darkness. If he could see the light of day again. If he could even catch the glimmering flicker of candlelight.

His captors were a cruel bunch indeed even managing to bring him his meals in the true darkness.

"PLEASE!" Lor shrieked, the panic setting in deep now that the tears had fallen. He found the words he thought his captors would like to hear, "Don't leave me here anymore! PLEASE! Don't make me stay here! PLEASE! I renounce whatever claim to the throne I had. Just PLEASE let me out! PLEASE I renounce my name! I renounce my father just PLEASE! Please...." 'let this end' remained unspoken at the end of his words and the last please was a mere whimper. It was almost inaudible but anyone who heard it would know the sound, whether they'd heard it for the first time or a thousand times prior. The whimper was something that broken things made when they became broken. When at last they felt that last bit of hope, the bit of hope they'd clung to so very tightly die within their arms.

The sound of footsteps echoed forlornly through Lor's mind, they seemed to go on for ages before Lor realized that the sound wasn't fading as all the previous had. He sat up straighter and fell silent, ears searching in the way that his eyes could not. As the steps grew closer he drew back from the bars of the door where he was resting, he knelt on all fours eyes searching vainly through the darkness.

His fear grew with each step, as he realized that there where many steps marching his way. His heart sped up faster. Had the rebels heard his confession? Now that Lor no longer had any claim to anything were they going to dispose of him? Terror at something aside from the darkness filled his throat and he crouched there like a feral cat poised to attack should something open his cells. The steps stopped instantaneously right in front of Lor's cell, and the former prince peered again vainly through the darkness, "Who's there?" he asked, trying to sound fearsome, and he was in a way. He was starving and scared and wounded mentally, he was more accosted wild animal than child now and his struggle would be fearsome indeed against whatever foe lay on the other side of those bars.

There was no enemy outside the gates however, and a kind voice proclaimed in alarm, "Prince! What ails you? I am so glad to have found you at last! Back up so that we can free you my dear Lord, I am so glad-" the voice repeated, "So very-very glad!" Lor complied, relaxing at the sound of the familiar voice of his uncle, his uncle would protect him of that Lor was certain. His brother was a protector not a leader and had even handed over his claim to the throne to Lor elder brother in exchange for gaining the title of chief of guards, though Royal Law decreed he would still be heir despite the birth of both Lor and his brother.

Lor placed his hands over his ears to dim the sound of the cell door being broken open and soon enough his uncle's calloused hand was grasping his pulling him to his feet for a bone crushing embrace. Still despite all the relief in his heart Lor was uneasy.

"Uncle," he asked hesitantly, all his youth peering through the grime and dirt on his person, "How did you find me?

His uncle laughed, "Well I assure you it was no easy task, we searched all the dungeons before-"

"No-" Lor interrupted, "How did you find me in this dark without a torch?"

Slowly his uncle lowered him to his feet, his hands raising to cup Lor's face gently, "A torch?" his uncle repeated and his voice was confused and afraid, "Lor- look at me. Why would I need a torch, you're here in a brightly lit tower. That's why we couldn't find you in the dungeons." his voice was gentle still because as he said those words both Lor and him knew the truth, still the boy fought not to understand.

"No-" he whimpered backing away from the hands he could not see, that he would never see whatever the light, "No-no-no-no-no! I'm afraid of the dark Uncle and it's dark here!" the ten year old child felt as though he were perched on the edge of hysteria.

"Lor!" his uncle cried out in alarm, "It'll be okay." he tried to soothe.

Lor could not hear past the blood rushing in his ears, he crawled backwards away from the noise to towards the wall until he hit it with a painful thump. ""No-no-no! NO-NO-NO!" his voice raised with his despair, he curled into a ball and clenched his eyes shut so that he could pretend when he opened them he'd see again. His screams turned to howls of "Please! Please! PLEASE!"

The darkness was absolute, menacing and entirely devoid of light in a way that darkness rarely seemed to be.

END


Submitted: August 21, 2015

© Copyright 2022 DarkAngelLeo. All rights reserved.

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CF Crous

Very dark and stifling =)

Sat, August 22nd, 2015 8:12am

Author
Reply

Haha mission goal achieved!

Sat, August 22nd, 2015 9:03am

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