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This story contains content of a highly disturbing nature that may be offensive to some readers: including (but definitely not limited to: domestic abuse, rape, blood & gore, general violence, and torture. Please DO NOT read if you are likely to be offended! Vega's life is not a pretty picture!

Vega & other Street Fighter characters owned by CAPCOM. Victoria de Cerna & Marc Antoní Gauldera belong to me.


As I sat on the plane and stared out the window, I tried not to think of the events of the night before I left. I had a little anxiety going into a new country, a new world so different than my own but there was an excitement also building like a knot in my chest.

"Are you ready to start your new life?" asked Marc Antoní, nudging my shoulder as he sat next to me. I did not look at him.

"Go to hell!" I growled.

"One of my favorite places." he grinned. "You know, your hostility won't change anything."

I sighed; my head still whirled as much as I tried to ignore it.

"But I know you're not angry with me. She was a wreck when I saw her this morning..." I felt a sharp pang in my chest at the mention of my once beloved mother.

"Mention her again and I'll slit your throat, old man."

Marc Antoní chuckled, "Fair enough. When we arrive, you must listen to everything the master has to say. Your life will depend on it. There are no second chances among assassins."
I looked at him.

"I can handle myself."

"Your swaggering confidence can be so irritating sometimes but, I'm glad to see you are not afraid."

"I fear nothing!"

"That is obvious." said the older man with another of his grins. "But I swear to you that if you mess this up, I will make you regret it." his grin faded and his eyes darkened.

"You don't frighten me, Marc Antoní."

"Maybe not; but whether you do or not, I will make you regret it regardless if you miss this chance."

"I don't care." I growled, resuming staring out the window. My mentor sighed heavily. I could sense his exasperation and he seemed to hone in on my pain, rubbing the salt in my still-bleeding wound.

"She will be taken care of, I swear it." he assured me, putting his hand on my shoulder.

My jaw set and my shoulders tensed just thinking of her, and I shrugged him off.

"You know, there comes a time for you to stand for yourself and yourself alone. You can't support her your whole life."

I swallowed a growing knot in my throat and my breath hitched.

"She is all I've ever known...and I left that."

"You did as you must do. You are not responsible for her emotions. Now, I cannot say what you were fighting over but I know Victoria and I know you. She is a powerful woman...I have no doubt you know this. You cannot deny her."
I rolled my eyes at him. Of course I knew what she was like! I alone knew the depths of her soul, her very being.

I thought of her passionate, gleaming eyes that night before I left, and the hunger that shone in them, threatening to destroy us both. She possessed a power so hard to deny and I stood so close to the abyss, willing myself to fall in and yet, I did not.

I exhaled, squeezing my eyes shut, trying to banish her image from my mind—I could never admit to him how deeply I cared for her, how much I still needed her—and how deeply she had hurt me that night—but just the idea of trying to shut her out made my chest hurt even more.

"You are young and eager, I understand. Your emotions are raw and so close to the surface now and I won't judge you for it. You may hate me but you must understand that you are not alone here; I will take care of you now."

"You cannot possibly begin to understand us, old man. You will never understand me and you only pretend to understand her—you don't even care about her!"

I could feel something warm coming to my eyes; a sensation so foreign that I had not felt it since I was child. I willed it with all my strength to stay where it was, not to fall.

I clenched my fist tight and shook my head, clearing my throat.

Uncle Miguel forbade tears when I was growing up; they made me weak, he said, and I knew Marc Antoní would say the same. I had no intention of being weak—not now, not ever—and not especially in front of Marc Antoní Gauldera.

"Do you hear me, Vega?" he said into my ear as I focused on my thoughts. "I will watch over you now. I do not care that you hate me; it won't change anything. You are my charge now and you will listen to everything I say." I did not look at him, steeling myself further. "Do you understand?" he asked and there was crispness in his voice that made me look at him. I nodded silently.

Chapter 1

I arrived hours later in Japan. Where I could not be sure however, it appeared to be a large city. I could scarcely read the signs that appeared before me in brush script on paper lanterns, neon signs glowing in a rainbow of colors.

It was Spring and the cherry blossoms rained from the cherry trees in the parks like soft, white snow, a light scent wafting through the warm breeze.

I found the weather to be pleasant; warm and inviting like my beloved country. A slight ache grew in my heart as I read the instructions Marc Antoni had written down.

Before I knew it, I found myself walking towards what looked to be an abandoned building in downtown. The brick was dark and fading, tarnished over years.

I walked inside, the light from the day streaming in through dusty rays. The air was a bit chilled and instead of bare concrete floors, I looked down to see tatami mats.

"Hello?" I said in Japanese, the sound echoing across the expanse of the room.

I heard a soft thud just behind me and I felt the hairs on my neck stand up. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw a dark shadow. I barely had time to register movement as I dodged a metal claw coming towards my head.

I rolled forward, away from my attacker and slowly stood to face him.

"Nante koto da yo?!" a Japanese voice hissed. "Omae..."

"W-what? Geki...san?" I said, cautiously.

"What the hell do you want?" he drawled again in heavily accented English.

He stood in the shadows, while I stood safely in a beam of light. I watched as his figure slowly emerged from the darkness.

Geki, as I understood him to be, was a slender Japanese man of average height; slightly shorter than my own. His figure was lean and agile as mine, however, which I knew would make him a swift fighter. He wore a black suit, as I expected of ninjas and from beneath his vest was a fishnet shirt, which I found curious. A strand of long brown hair poked out of his cap and his mask hung around his neck. His eyes were dark and fierce and he stood before me with his arms folded.

"Marc Antoní Gauldera sent me." I replied.

He chuckled with a nod.

"Aa, yappari ne...the Spaniard?"

I nodded and he sighed.

"You want to become ninja?"

"I want to become the best."

Geki sat crossed-legged in front of me suddenly, drawing a knife from his belt, twisting the tip idly into the palm of his hand. He spoke.



Geki smirked and threw the knife towards my head, and it landed squarely in a wooden beam behind me.

"Are you Shadowlaw?"

"No...look, Marc Antoní said I would train with you—that you were expecting me—and I can speak Japanese!"

"A gaijin who is not from Shadowlaw wants to learn from me?" he snickered.

"Gaijin!" I exclaimed. "I am not gaijin! I am a Spaniard—from Spain—like Marc Antoní Gauldera! I am from Barcelona, Spain, and I am of noble birth. Do you dare to mock me?" I exclaimed in Japanese.

Geki laughed at my redundancy.

"You are not Japanese; you are all gaijin to me, Gaijin." he continued to speak in his accented English.

I growled in frustration; I knew my Japanese was not perfect but I knew he understood me. In my studies, I learned that while gaijin was not necessarily an insult, it meant "foreigner" and in some context, this was seen as a bad thing.

"So your master sent you, did he?"


"You are his protégé, are you not?"

"I suppose I am." I replied, taken aback by his comment. I had never really thought of myself that way, regardless of how much Marc Antoní had taught me.

He nodded thoughtfully and stood up.

"Well then, if I train you in the art of ninjutsu, you have to listen to every word I say. Disobeying me could mean your death."

"What? Will you kill me for disobeying you? Will you pursue me to the ends of the earth if I decide to leave?" I snickered.

Geki gave a hearty laugh. The first time I had heard it.

"You have been watching too many movies!" and then as to be expected, his face grew grave again. "I have neither time nor resources to waste it on you. It is a fact that we ninja are put in many dangerous situations; if you do not heed my instruction, I cannot be responsible for what may happen to you."

I folded my arms.

"Fair enough." I conceded.

"But—I will kill you if you ever reveal my secrets."

"Yes, yes. I understand."

"Put your things over there." he pointed to a corner of the room and I dropped my bag there. Before I returned to face him, I took out my claw and mask.

"Ah...he's taught you to use my claw?"

"Yes...did you teach him?"

"Yes... but that is for another time..."

I nodded, doing my best to tolerate his enigmatic answer.

Putting on my mask and claw, I took my stance.

"Why do you wear a mask? Do you think your face is ugly?" Geki smirked and I saw an impish gleam in his eye. I knew he knew the answer.

"I wear it so I do not get your filthy blood all over my precious face."

Before I could react, he came whirling towards me in a succession of kicks. I barely had time to block it with my arms before the force knocked me back.

Blocking him, I leapt over him, bounding off the wall, my arms outstretched and ready to take him with my claw. To my shock, he vanished before my eyes and I landed on my feet to see him standing behind me. He knocked me in the back of the head before I could react. The blow was not quite enough to stun me and so I swept my leg under him, knocking him over before he could land another hit.

Using my claw's long reach, I swiped at him when he rose again. His skills were adept and he flipped backwards, away from my grasp.

I tucked my body and rolled forward, finally able to make a swipe at his chest.

With a cry, he began to spin, his kicks barreling towards me like a whirlwind. I took to the air once again, hoping to evade his attack. As I fell upon him, he jumped into the air, throwing his knives at me. I was able to dodge most them. One nearly nicked my precious face, if it was not for my mask, and another scraped against my shoulder.

Again, he came at me and I smirked. Clothed in black like the bulls I killed, I knew he was no different. With a dramatic spin, I evaded him. I punched at him, and quickly made another kick. He blocked but I could see his footing slipping as I barraged him with my attacks.

With a final sweep of my leg, he fell on his back and I held my claw at his throat, grinning beneath my mask.

"Do you yield?"

"You did well...for a gaijin." he said with a smirk, panting.

In one solid motion, he backflipped and knocked me back as he rose. I sat up on my arms and blinked in surprise.

I could see a hint of playfulness in his expression gleaming in his mysterious dark eyes. "You must be very tired from your journey. We can continue tomorrow. For now, you may rest."

I had barely noticed it was nightfall by the time we finished our fight. The building was almost pitch black except for the moon showing through the dusty windows.

"Sensei, why are you in a building like this?" I said, my hesitation filling me as I thought of sleeping on the floor.

"You are expecting a doujo, maybe?" he chuckled, "a ninja goes wherever. I have no need of such lodgings."

I chewed my lip and looked at my small alcove with the tatami mat. There was a small pillow and some blankets. I was told that the Japanese slept in beds on the floor, however there was no mattress to be seen.

With a shrug and a sigh, I resigned myself to the location he had assigned me. I sat cross-legged on the floor, going through my bag. I had lobbied for a nice suitcase but Marc Antoní assured me such a luxury was not necessary here.

At the bottom, I found a picture of my mother and pulled it out. I intended it to be there, for as angry as I was, she was all I had; but as I held it, I could feel the bitterness welling up inside me and it spread to my hand, crumbling it in my grasp. I felt my jaw tense and exhaled through my nose as I stared at her. Maybe someday I could look at her again but...not now.

"I will not let you consume me, Victoria de Cerna. Not now, not ever. You will not stop me. I won't let you." I could feel hot angry tears welling in my eyes but I knew they could not fall. It did not matter now; I could feel everything burning up inside me, my guilt transforming into more anger. I was powerless to stop her and powerless to save her from herself but I knew was the one person I could save.

Quickly, I buried the photo under some clothes before I tore it up.

"Vega," said Geki and I looked up.

"You seem angry. Why?"

It seemed an obvious statement but since he was one of the few people I had ever met not aware of my situation, I realized he truly did not know.

"It is nothing. Family matters, that is all."

He crossed his arms and looked down thoughtfully at me.

"I have seen that anger before...but not in you. There are warriors here that harness their emotions like a weapon and it has nearly destroyed them, destroying those they love in the process. It is like a dark energy and it possesses them. Some call it the 'Satsui no hadou'."

I furrowed my brows.

"In order to be an effective assassin, you must master your emotions."

"Yes, Marc Antoní has told me as much."

He smiled.

"Then, he has taught you half as well."

"Indeed. I suppose I will learn meditation then?"


"You know, he also told me that if I use those emotions, they are very effective in fighting."

"Indeed they are! But if you do not control them, they will control you. No doubt he has also told you this?"

I rolled my eyes.

"Many times. I wanted to wipe that smirk of his right off of his face!"

"And did you succeed?"

I sighed.

"Occasionally, but he always got the better of me."

"That is because he knows."

"Knows what?"

"That your emotions are your weakness and as long as you continue to display them, they will continue to be so."

"Then what shall I do? Turn them off?"

He chuckled.

"No! That would be far worse. You must find balance within yourself. That I can help you with; you can use your emotions to your advantage when you can control them but not before."

I gave an exasperated sigh and laid down, tucking my hands behind my head.

"Very well."

He nodded and turned away from me. I felt a sharp pang under my rib as he threw a knife at my direction, narrowly missing my abdomen and nicking my shirt and embedding itself in the mat.

"And Vega, you must always be prepared." he said before vanishing in the darkness.

I waited for him to leave and sat there in the silence. I knew out there the city was alive. I saw only a small portion of it; the exotic signs written in Japanese, which I could barely read, the shops.

Creeping out of the building, I lept to the roof.

A cool breeze blew through my hair as I looked upon the twinkling lights of the city. Above, a full moon shone bright, the stars shining all around it.
The same vexing signs as before lit up the town; Japanese held some mystery to me; the curve of each character, the stick straight lines written in an exotic code. I had only studied Japanese for a few months and it was rudimentary at best. Though I spoke many of the languages of my neighboring European countries, including being a native speaker in both Spanish and Catalan, I could not fathom that of the Asian tongue.

"Doumo..." said a gruff voice and I whirled around to see Geki standing there. He greeted me in a rough manner, seemingly typical among the young Japanese men, despite my assurances how polite their society was. Given the casual manner he possessed, I inferred that he must have liked me to be so informal so quickly.

The breeze blew through a strand of his dark hair that hung in his face. His dark eyes sparkled like the stars around us. He gave me a wry smile.

"Konbanwa," he said.

I bowed slightly with my arms to my sides.

"Konbanwa, Sensei." I replied.

"Did you think I would not find you?"

"Was I not to leave?"

He chuckled.

"Not at all. I was wondering when you might go out."

"It is too quiet in there, Sensei. I cannot think, I cannot sleep..."

He nodded silently; he seemed as thoughtful as I was at the moment.

"I have never seen fighting like you. How did you create it?" Geki asked after a moment.

I smirked and my chest swelled.

"was a know, a bullfighter...'olé'?"

"Olé?" he repeated the Spanish phrase in his Japanese pronunciation, sounding queer to my ears—something closer to "Oré". I laughed with a nod.

"Something like that, yes."

"Naruhodo ne..." he said and it trailed off as if he was lost in thought again.

"Bullfighting must be very dangerous! I have heard of it."

"Yes, it is—but I have never been hurt! Not once." I grinned.

"You are...very proud of yourself, aren't you?"

"But of course! Why shouldn't I be?"

Geki was silent, his mouth twisted into a sort of grimace for a moment, his brows furrowed and still I could see a thoughtfulness in his eyes.

"You are so young. How did you discover such a thing?"

"Well, bullfighting is quite popular in Spain. My 'step-father'…" I could feel my mouth cringing as I formed that word and I swallowed down the disgust rising in my throat, "He used to take me when I was very little to the fights. My mother did not like it, but we did. When I was around 10, I decided I wanted to become a famous matador and so, they enrolled me in a sort of school for bullfighters to train. At that age, you don't fight bulls of course. Rather, you practice on a dummy with another person. A couple years ago, they decided I was ready to participate in a fight and I joined a cuadrilla—a squadron of bullfighters. I possessed great skill and agility, something needed to outwit a large beast. I am something of a celebrity back home because of it."

Geki nodded again, with his hand on his chin.

"And what about you? Have you been a ninja for a long time?"

"Since I was a child. I was raised in a village near Iga, at the base of Mount Fuji."

"Is that why you can vanish and reappear so quickly?"

He chuckled.

"It is not all knife throws and kicks. Ninja are skilled in the ways of diplomacy and espionage."

"Oh, you mean you manipulate people? I am a skilled liar; that my mother taught me, for she is the biggest liar of all."

"Then I am certain she taught you well." he replied, seemingly unmoved by my emotions.

"She betrayed me." I said, my bitterness welling up inside me again.

"Women can be very shrewd."

"The sharpest knife of all."

"Vega—look out there. Do you see the city before you? That is your training ground."

"The whole city?" I exclaimed and he nodded.

"It is yours for the taking but you must not get caught. Ninjas do not get caught."

"Oh I won't." I smirked. "I never do."


Nante koto da yo? - What the hell?!

Omae - You...

Yappari ne... - That's what I thought (informal)

Doumo - Hello (informal)

Naruhoudo ne- Is that right?

Konbanwa - Good evening


The Adventures of the Spanish Ninja in Japan Ch.1
[PREQUEL] Vega continues on his journey to become the world's greatest assassin and a future lord of Shadowlaw. Facing the shadows of his dark past and adjusting to life in Japan, what trials await him? Read and find out! [MATURE READERS ONLY. GRAPHIC VIOLENCE. READER DISCRETION ADVISED] Sequel to the Origins of the Spanish Ninja!

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This content is intended for mature audiences.

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Vega & Street Fighter belong to CAPCOM. Victoria de Cerna, Miguel de Cerna, Marc Antoní Gauldera belong to me. For entertainment only! I make no profit from this work.

Mama listen to me
Today I want to say
Today I had a dream
Such a beautiful sweet dream

Papa listen to me
Today I want to say
Today I had a dream
Of papa and mama too

Ah, in the pale blue light of the moon
A stray kitten who wanders
Seems to beckon to me

See now it's my time to dance a waltz
Dancing all by myself
Held close by the moon now
It is time
Time to dance

Mama listen to me
Today I want to say
Today I had a dream
I'm just a little bit afraid

Papa listen to me
Today I want to say
I'll turn into a star
Such a beautiful shining star

Thank you from my heart
I love you very much
This is forever
Now I fly
Up to the sky

See now it's my time to dance a waltz
Dancing all by myself
Held close by the moon now
It is time
Time to dance

See now it's my time to dance a waltz
Dance a waltz of farewell
It's just like I dreamed
Like a dream

Ah, in the pale blue light of the moon
A stray kitten who wanders
Seems to beckon to me

See now it's my time to dance a waltz
Dancing all by myself
Held close by the moon now
It is time
Time to dance
See now it's my time to dance a waltz
Dance a waltz of farewell
It's just like I dreamed
Like a dream

"Sayounara Waltz" - The Mortal

Marc Antoní told us he was taking us to a safe-house on the outskirts of Sevilla, somewhere quiet and secluded. After everything we had been through, some peace and quiet seemed nice.

When we arrived at the house that night, it was dark inside. He turned on the light and I looked around the parlor. Mother walked up to a picture and kissed it; it was a picture of a handsome man with blonde hair, standing with his arm around who I thought was a very young Marc Antoní; he wore a matador's costume, and a pretty young blonde woman who looked pregnant; I smiled realizing it was my mother.

"Is father?" I asked, gesturing at him.

"Yes," she said, smiling.

At the bottom of the picture, there was an inscription written in Catalan in faded pen:

Marc Antoni, Victoría, i jo, 1966 Septiembre

"Alberto..." she said softly, her eyes seemed to be looking far away.

I knew that since I was born in late January of 1967, this was only a few months before I was born and, from what she had told me, a few months before he died. I could only imagine the painful memories this picture evoked in her, and I wondered if this place had secrets too.

I found my mother in the parlor; it was dark and she was watching movies on a projector. I sat next to her on the sofa.

"Is that-is that Father?" I asked, looking at a handsome blonde haired man on the screen. He was in swimming trunks, his hair seemed to glow in the sun, a radiant smile on his face. His hair fell about to his shoulders; still quite short yet long enough to pull back. A beautiful young blonde woman wearing a green bikini walked up behind him, waving and smiling, her belly large and round. I looked over at my mother and I smiled. Then, I watched as with an impish gleam in his eye, my father back-flipped into the pool behind them. I realized this was the same house, maybe 15 or 20 years before.

It looked so warm and inviting there; it could have been summer though I did not know for certain. The warmth of Southern Spain was alluring all year round.

"He looks so young!" I exclaimed.

"He was..." she replied with a sigh. "Not much older than you are now."

"When was this?"

"The summer before you were born..."

She continued to stare at the screen and I could see the pain in her eyes. I draped my arm around her and she nestled against me.

"What was he like?"

"He was...well, as you see now! He was very precocious. He loved adventure and he loved to play; there was something always warm about him."

There came a silence while we watched the screen, transfixed by the ghosts of her past.

"Oh God, you look so much like him!" she exclaimed and my heart fell. I stood up, walking up to the screen.

"I-I do? I always thought I looked like you."

She smiled sadly.

"You have his eyes, his smile."

I sat again next to her and she stroked my face.

"I see him every time I look at you...I miss him." I met her gaze as she searched mine, perhaps trying to find him in me. She kissed me tenderly, her lips soft and warm though they trembled and I wondered who she was kissing in that moment. She broke into a sob and nestled against my neck. I wrapped my arm around her head and held her a moment.

"It's all right, it's all right." I whispered. "You are not alone anymore. You have me!"

"It hurts. It hurts so much. Sometimes I don't know how I can bear to look to at you."

I sighed and tried to process everything she said. My heart felt heavy with both happiness and sorrow; the joy of finally knowing about my father, but sorrow for my mother. I did not mourn for my father, whom I never knew but I felt my mother's pain tearing into my heart. I was her most precious treasure, the one she loved above all, and now I sensed some kind of resentment.

I held her face in my hands and smiled at her, trying to ignore the sinking feeling in chest.

"You can look at me because I am handsome and I am beautiful and my mother loves beautiful things!"

She laughed, somewhat hysterical.

"I do. You are my angel, my beautiful fallen angel and I am thankful everyday that your father gave me you. You were his greatest gift."

"You see, he did not want you to feel alone either!"

She nestled against me.

"No, you are right." she said with another sad smile.

I glanced at the screen.

"Marc Antoní was there too?"

"Always. We were inseparable in those brief days; your father's best friend."

Marc Antoní grinned at the camera now, his swarthy dark looks highlighting his light colored green eyes. I did not see the darkness that was usually there; now it seemed replaced by his beaming white smile. His dark hair still hung passed his ears in smooth waves and he ran a hand through it. He threw his arm around my mother's shoulder and kissed her cheek.

I looked back at her and she chewed her lip.

"Yes...he was in love with me too." she said, as if reading my thoughts.

"You were pregnant with me and he still behaved that way in front of Father?"

"Marc Antoní knew he had lost me by then; I chose your father for good reasons."

"I can't understand how they were best friends though." I said.

She smiled wryly.

"Oh, but they were! Marc Antoní was always so adventurous and hedonistic; he brought that side out in your father but your father did not have his dark side, nor his brother Miguel's cruelty. I was always so tired of Marc Antoní's schemes and I did not like that he was involved with criminal organizations."

I sat forward and looked at her.

"What?" she said with a laugh.

"N-nothing..." I stammered, trying to hide my surprise, swiftly changing the subject. "You were so beautiful! You were s-so full and round! I've never seen you look so happy before. I think you were glowing...but it may be the sun."

She chuckled and a flush crept into her cheeks.

"Oh, Vega..." she sighed wistfully, "We wanted so much to have a big family! I had hoped to give you lots of siblings to play with..." I watched her hand fall absently to her womb.

" was not to be..."

I stroked her hair and nuzzled her cheek.

"Were I not your son—someone else, anyone else, I would have made you so happy. I can't bear to see you like this..." I whispered.

I pressed my lips against her neck and I could feel her pulse racing beneath them; she suddenly shook her head and squeezed her eyes shut, as if she banished the image before her.

"It will never be, it can never be. That part of my life is dead—along with your father."

I held her face in my hands, my gaze locked on hers.

"Damn it! I am here! Me! I am alive, here, now. You can't hold a ghost, you can't kiss one either."

She startled at my abruptness and large tears rolled down her cheeks. I let out an exasperated sigh.

"I'm sorry. Tell me what I can do to help! What can I do to ease your pain?"

She shook her head.

"Just hold me a while and we'll watch the rest of these."

And so I did as she asked and wrapped my arms around her, pressing my cheek to her head.

I wondered who this young handsome man was that was my father; a man kept secret from me my whole life, erased from existence now alive and vibrant on the screen before me.

After a few hours, I looked down to see my mother fast asleep in my arms and I smiled. I felt thankful I had her and no one could ever deny her existence in my eyes.

She began to stir and she looked up at me.

"Oh! I must have fallen asleep!"

"It's alright," I smiled at her softly.

"I should go to bed..are you coming?" she asked, stroking my cheek.

"No," I said shaking my head. "I want to stay up a while longer."

She yawned and carefully moved off the sofa.

"Okay, my darling, but please, don't stay up too long." with a quick kiss goodnight, I nodded and watched her disappear towards her room.

And so it was, I was alone in the parlor with nothing but the light of the projector. I saw some reels of film we did not watch earlier and I carefully changed them out. I could not read the labels on the canister in the dark but soon enough it became clear what it was.

Scenes of bullfights from the past soon filled the screen and I looked to see a familiar figure in the plaza del toros—my father parading out with his cuadrilla following proudly behind him.

I watched as scene after scene he triumphantly took down each bull. I smiled to myself as I watched him present a favor to my mother out in the crowd each time, often the ear of the bull. The camera could not zoom in to her but I could tell how proud she was just by her body language, standing there, bowing and waving at him with her white handkerchief—a stark contrast to the morose and somber mood she had the one time she came to my bullfight.

The heavy weight of sleep began to pull at my eyes as I laid there, stretched across the sofa watching his fights. After what seemed to be his millionth fight and his millionth victory, I was nearly asleep when something caught my eye—the sleep instantly vanished from my body and I sat up.

Carefully he cornered the bull, waving the red cape and sword in hand, ready to strike his final blow—called "The Moment of Truth" in bullfighting—something I had faced down many times in my own brief career as a matador—and something I had seen him do many times that night.

He lunged towards the bull and the bull lowered its head, his sharp horns pointing at my father. With another flourish of the cape, my father thrust his sword but the sword missed its mark as the bull drove his horns into my father's chest, pinning him to the ground and dragging him, the bull's massive weight bearing down on him. Suddenly, the cuadrilla was on it, throwing their lances into it and another took my father's sword and drove it into the neck of the bull. It collapsed on the ground and they gathered around my father.

I stood, drawing as close as I could, and I watched them carefully try and move the bull while the others tried to pull my father's now lifeless body away.

Without realizing it, my heart was in my throat and I was thankful for that one moment the films had no sound. I swallowed and exhaled, clenching my fists.

"I am sorry, Father." I said aloud. "I am sorry that you failed but, I will not! No bull ever defeated me and no man will either...she deserved better."

I could not bear to look at the screen anymore and I shut off the projector.

The days seemed to pass slowly in that house after viewing those films. A pervading sense of sorrow and darkness hung about; the many pictures and relics of my father scattered around the house made it seem like a mausoleum.

My mother began to withdraw, even more quiet than I had ever seen her. I had seen her depressed much of my life, the pain and abuse by my stepfather taking the toll on her. Now he was gone and she seemed so wistful. I wanted more than anything to stop her pain but I began to feel that maybe I could not reach her.

It was hard to understand what made this time so different than the others; she had no one to torment her, no one to fear and yet, here she was, mourning for a man she could never love again.

I came to her room and she lay on her bed in the dark, wearing her blouse, skirt and heels. Not sleeping, not moving. I could hear soft crying.

I laid down beside her, her back to me. I wrapped my arms around her, pinning her arms across her chest.

"You cannot continue this way," I whispered into her ear.

"No, I can't..." she moaned.

I inhaled her sweet scent.

"You have to get up! You have to move again. You can't just lie here forever, you know."

"Why not?" she sobbed, sniffing. "I have no reason to move...I-I can't help but to think Marc Antoní is doing this on purpose."

I raised my head.

"What do you mean?"

"Everything he's done for us has been nothing but tragedy. It's as if...he wants me to suffer...and...I do not know why."

I pressed my lips to the back of her head thoughtfully. She had a point; after all, I knew he was the one to tell her about my fighting and bring to her to that disastrous event. I could see him standing there with his permanent smirk. Oh, he must been so pleased with himself to see us at odds like that!

I began to wonder about what he had to gain and then I realized what he was trying to do for me. Teaching me to fight, pushing me so hard to train. We both knew I could not ever be the fighter I was meant to be with her so close to me; he was driving us apart, bit by bit for either my benefit or his own selfish gain—I could not tell at that moment.

I felt my chest tighten and a burning fire swept through me once again; I held her tighter with the thought. Of course I wanted to fight! That was no question; but to do this to us? Destroy our family, the family of his best friend that was like his own...unacceptable.

Marc Antoní and I continued to train daily outside in the corridors of our patio and still, the darkness that surrounded my mother weighed heavily on my mind. It was becoming harder to think, harder to focus—which is dangerous when you are fighting.

"What is wrong with you, Vega?" he said. "You've missed most of my hits today."

"It's Mother, she is suffering."

He gave a wry smile, something not completely welcome but not unexpected from him.

"She is always suffering, Vega. There is little you can do about it."

"You brought us here, you made her suffer!" I hissed.

"That was not my intention!" he exclaimed, his green eyes flashing. "I would never hurt her."

"But you did!" I hissed, the vitriol rising in my throat.

He shook his head somberly.

"There were few places we could go after her little...stunt." he let out a heavy sigh and rubbed his brows.

"Why not back to Lyons? If you are a Spaniard, why do you live there anyway?"

"Never you mind!" he snapped and then in his characteristic manner, his face softened into a wry smile. "I think you two had overstayed your welcome there, anyway. Don't you? Besides, I thought that she deserved to be someplace nice, someplace quiet, safe. I knew she missed her husband and I thought that if she could see him again and remember him, it would make her happy after all those miserable years with your uncle."

My anger cooled as I listened to his words and thought about them.

"Believe me, Vega. I had no way of knowing she would react this way. If I had suspected even the least bit she would be so despondent, I would have never done it."

I swallowed the lump growing in my throat, watching the sadness wash over his face. I knew he was not lying—at least not this time.

"She has not left her bed in days. She lays in the dark all day. She barely eats or drinks." I said. "Nothing I did helped her."

"I know, Vega." he said softly, putting his hand on my shoulder. "It's been very quiet since we came here—quiet as the grave. Unfortunately, she was never given a chance to mourn him properly... "

"What happened?"

Marc Antoní raised his eyebrows.

"She did not tell you?"

"No, not as yet. She seems very reluctant to tell me anymore about the past. She's in too much pain."

He sighed and crossed his arms.

"Very well. When your father died, I had planned on marrying your mother to protect you and her. He made me promise I would if anything ever happened to him."

"Even though she chose to marry him to begin with?"

Marc Antoní laughed dryly.

"She told you that, did she?" and he shook his head.

"She seemed to imply you were...all lovers." I said, my mouth barely able to form the words, and I grimaced at the thought.

"Indeed we were." he smirked at my discomfort. "They were the best friends and lovers I had ever had! We spent many passionate moments together. However, they were different times then, much more free and open; but, I never wanted to marry her! Her mood swings and emotional outbursts were too exhausting! But your father—God rest his soul—found her 'refreshing'." he grimaced and added, "What he saw in her, I will never know..."

My chest tightened.

"How could you say such a thing about her? You wanted her! You obviously began to pursue her after my father died. You continued after her, no matter the cost when she married my uncle Miguel!"

It was his turn to grimace now as he rolled his eyes.

"That is not the point! Wanting someone is far different from marrying them! I highly doubt you wanted to marry all the girls that you've slept with."

The heat rose beneath my cheeks.

"That's not the same at all!"

He smirked in triumph.

"Ah, good. I see we understand each other."

Not wanting to pursue that topic any longer, I swiftly changed it.

"Then...why? Why did she marry that monster instead?"

"I was just coming to that. It turns out that there was marriage contract in place in the de Cerna family line. It stated that in the event of a brother's death, the wife must marry her brother-in-law to preserve the family."

"What? How medieval! It's almost...incestuous." I exclaimed and I could feel my stomach turn.

"Indeed. But your family is very old, Vega. You come from a long line of nobility in Catalonia."

"But then why was my father kept a secret from me? Why was his existence erased from our family?"

"Your father left a stain on the family reputation by publicly denouncing General Franco and his fascist regime at the time. He did not take into consideration doing so would put him on the chopping block nor that it would ruin the family name. General Franco was not fond of the existing nobility in the country as it was, taking away land and titles at a whim. Some were executed, some imprisoned for less than what your father did! Luckily, your uncle Miguel, for all the bastard that he was, used what sway he had with General Franco to save your father from execution even worse unknown fate."

"You mean like my mother's parents when they...'disappeared'?"
My mother often told me the story of how when she was very little, she hid in the cellar with her grandparents while Franco's secret police drug her parents away, never to be seen again; though I never gave it much thought since it did not affect me directly.

He smiled wryly.

"Yes. Your father's title and wealth were stripped from him, and his family immediately disowned him; but your father was stubborn! To make ends meet, he became a bullfighter, quickly regaining his wealth and a new status before he died. Your mother had barely even buried your father before she was made to go to your uncle's estate; Miguel forced her to leave any trace of his memory behind in this house...except you. You were named in defiance of him."

I nodded solemnly and I began to understand my mother's grief but it did not change how weary I became from it.

"I saw my father's films." I suddenly blurted and he looked at me, his eyebrows raised and he smiled.

"Did you? What did you think?"

"I saw him die."

The color drained from his face and in his green eyes shone a gleam more serious than I had ever seen; his voice grew deep and low.

" were never meant to see that, nor was your mother—God forbid."

"She hasn't seen it, I don't think, but I found her watching the other movies the other day. There were all kinds of them; you were all playing in the pool here, horsing around and having fun! And then, we saw the footage of the bullfights-"

"Ah, yes. I remember making those. I made them for your father to keep as a record of all his fights. I recorded them all, even the day he died."

"She was there, wasn't she?"

He nodded.

"She saw it happen, just as I did. It happened so fast when that bull barreled down on him, there was nothing we could do. The bull impaled him clean through."

"There was no warning? Something in its behavior?"

Marc Antoní laughed dryly.

"Vega, you know as well as any one—you cannot ever be sure of what a bull might do!"

I sighed with a shrug. In my brief time as a champion matador, one of the youngest in Spain, I knew he was right.

"Well I know that I won't fail. I will better than he ever was!"

"Yes, you will...and on that note, I think it's time to advance your training." he said, folding his arms and shifting his weight.

"What do you mean?"

"What would you say to training in Japan?"

"Japan? Why there?"

Marc Antoní smiled broadly.

"One cannot become a true assassin without first living amongst them."

I felt my heart race with excitement.

"You mean, I will train with ninjas?"

"The very best most secret and ruthless clan in Japan! You are far too good for the likes of Spain—or Europe for that matter. Your light will only be darkened here."

I knitted my brows; I knew what he was talking about.

"My mother...she needs care."

"I know she does and while you're away, she will have the very best doctor money will buy! The absolute best."

My heart that once raced now dropped to my stomach. I clenched my fist and chewed my lip as the realization hit me that I would leave her, once and for all, for the first time in my life.

"Vega, there comes a time in every young man's life when he must go out and make his mark on the world! She will cry and she will mourn but she will know that in the end it's what's best for you."

"Best for me? She's never known what's best for me—only her!"

"Come now. I know she can be a bit... shallow but in her heart, she would know the truth."

I snickered and rolled my eyes. I loved her more than anyone but I knew she would not let me go. Not now, not ever. The precarious position I had been put in would finally begin to tear me apart—wanting nothing more than to be on my own, seeing the world—and still longing to be by her side and let her completely consume me.

"She's in love with a ghost!" I cried. "I think she is possessed by it. I...I do not know what to do. I cannot leave her this way and I cannot leave until her spell is broken."

"What you must do. Vampires must be killed in their coffins and ghosts are found at their graves."

"Where is his grave?"

"There is a small shady tree at the edge of the garden. There you will find his grave...and the grave of your mother. They had every intention of spending eternity together."

I swallowed and nodded. I had no fear of graves or graveyards but I feared what would become of her. When I made her face her ghost, what would I find?

I leaned in the doorway of her room, watching my mother lay there in darkness. She was fully dressed with a white blouse, tight black skirt and heels, but she lay sprawled on the bed, not asleep, not even blinking; I could see the traces of her tears on her cheeks even in the dim light that poked beneath the curtains.

Her grief had overpowered her love for me—and that was unacceptable. Each day she was like this; I know that Marc Antoní said she had not been able to grieve before, but I wondered just how long she intended to stay this way.

I knelt down by her side and stroked her cheek with the back of my hand. As if woken from a dream, she gasped at me and then threw her arms around my neck, sobbing. I bit my lip with a sigh, trying to be patient, trying to be compassionate but with each sob, I could feel my resolve beginning to wane.

The warm allure of the pleasant weather in Sevilla was too hard to resist staying inside all day. Our small estate, quite a bit smaller than the one I grew up on, had a nice patio with a beautiful flower garden and a fountain. I thought perhaps just once I would try to get her outside to soak up the sun and smell all the lovely flowers; ones I was sure that she herself had planted, or at least picked out at one time.

I threw open the curtains, daylight streaming in. She moaned and turned over onto her stomach, hiding her face from the light.

"Come on now, Mother. You are not the queen of the dead!" I mused.

She moaned, turning over again, throwing her arm over her eyes.

"Oh you can be so cruel!"

"Cruel? Am I not your prince, your savior of the light?"

She smiled and removed her arm, squinting in the light, her hair laying around her head like a halo; she looked up at me from behind her heavy-lidded eyes.

"Oh yes, my sweet bloodthirsty prince! Wouldn't it be lovely to live forever together, you and I? No pain, no death?"

I lifted my head as I looked at her; I knew what she had meant and in her state, I was not surprised.

"No death..." I muttered under my breath. I knelt down by her side, gazing into her eyes, and she took my hands in hers, entwining our fingers together. "I would live forever with you." I said softly, kissing her forehead. She gazed up at me and I could see the love in her eyes gleaming back at me.

This was the truth, more than anything in the world. If I could stay by her side forever, I would. Still, at this moment, her pain tore at me, a deeper pain than I had ever known and I was determined to not let her go on like this.

Using my strength and the leverage she had inadvertently provided me by linking our hands together, I pulled her up so that she sat on edge of the bed.

"Wh-what are you doing?" she cried.

"We're going outside." I declared, pulling her to her feet.

"But it's far too bright!" she protested.

"Yes, I know. That's exactly why we're going. There's a lovely garden out there and you should enjoy it."

"I know about the garden and I do not wish to go!"

I pulled on her hand as we walked out her bedroom.

"It will be nice, you'll see. Besides, I think you and I should talk."

We walked hand in hand outside, the warm sun shining down on us and a gentle breeze blowing through our hair. I knew there was one place I had to take her, whether she wanted to go or not—it was important for both us.

I walked towards a shady tree at the edge of the garden. I could just make out the round stone that protruded up from the ground. She froze, her eyes widened, her chest heaving. I saw her fear and I stroked her face.

"Come on..." I encouraged her, and I drew her hand to my lips.

"I can't."

"Yes you can. I am here with you." She looked at me and licked her lips, letting out a deep sigh.

She began to walk again and I could feel her hand in mine go clammy.

"It's alright," I whispered.

We stopped under the tree and stood before the grave of my father. The temperature dropped considerably in the shade; I watched her shudder and rub her arms suddenly. I wrapped my arms around her and drew her close both in comfort and warmth.

She began to sob quietly and I stared at the words etched in the stone. My father was only 22 when he died, so young. It seemed almost impossible that one could die so young. Beside his tombstone was another matching stone with my mother's name on it, just as described.

"Are you alright?" I asked, turning to her.

She looked up at me tearfully, the last of her tears spilling down her cheeks.

"I don't understand how he could be gone! We had the perfect life. Everything was perfect and now, nothing is. He was not meant to die."

"He died so that I could live, remember? Your greatest gift?"

She searched my eyes, bewilderment showing back in hers.

"I know that he would not want you to be sad anymore. He would want us to be happy and live the rest of our lives together the best we can. Right?"

"I..." her mouth began to quiver and I could see she was going to cry again. I held her tight until she stopped.

A few moments later, we resumed walking back towards the garden. In the middle was the fountain surrounded by red roses. We took a seat on the edge of the fountain, its coolness refreshing in the sun. She turned and stared at her reflection in the water. I stood up and taking out my knife, I cut a rose, careful to avoid the thorns. I brushed its smooth velvety petals against her face and she gasped, turning back to me. I handed her the rose and I gave her a gentle smile.

I watched her smell it, her eyes closed and for a moment, I saw pleasure on her face. I sat next to her again and took her hand in mine.

"I am leaving for Japan." I said, after a pause.

She dropped the rose and stared at me, her eyes widened in shock.

"I'm-I'm sorry I have forsaken you. I never thought I would feel this way." she stammered tearfully.

I smiled gently.

"No, that's not why I am going." I stroked her cheek reassuringly.

"Then, why on earth would you go there?"

"I am going to train!"

"What?" she shrieked, "No! No more fighting, no more training. I forbid it!"

I smirked at her; the way she reacted in fear was always amusing.

"Please try to understand. I am doing this for both of us. I want to become even better."

"But, I don't want you to go!" she whined.

"It's frightening to think of leaving you. I've been all over Europe—even to Mexico—but never this far without you."

"I love you, Vega! I can't lose you!" she cried.

I pulled her to me, hugging her tight.

"I love you, too. Father tried and failed to become the best." I lifted her chin to meet my solemn gaze.

"He failed you. I will not fail you."

I kissed her tenderly, muffling more of her protests in the process.

"I need you! What will I do without you?"

"It's only for a year or 2 then I promise I will be back! You will see."

I kissed her forehead, temple and cheek, savoring the bitter taste like always, kissing every part of her face, fervently trying to comfort her.

"I promise you."

"Who will take care of me while you are away? I have never been alone."

It was hard to deny that she looked like a lost child looking at me the way she did, still, I could not help but smile at her.

"You won't be alone. I'll be there with you, in spirit. You told me you would always be with me no matter what!"

"Only when I die...and I am certain I shall when you leave."

"Then I will have to make you feel less alone while I am here...and perhaps Marc Antoní can help you put on some fancy parties! You always enjoy those!"

She sighed, looking away.

"I suppose..."

With that, I pulled her to her feet and we went back into the house.

My announcement did nothing to ease her depression, and I feared it would not. In fact, I feared it would make it worse. She continued to lay in the dark and I continued to worry.

Marc Antoní continued making preparations for my journey; I studied with a Japanese tutor everyday for what seemed like hours to be ready when I came to Japan and meanwhile, Marc Antoní prepared my passport and something extra for my beloved mother.

A doctor visited, carrying a bottle of little yellow pills; I was not stupid. I knew they were anti-depression pills—she had taken them on and off when I was growing up—but this time, I could not be anymore thankful for them.

Dutifully, she took them daily and I began to notice small changes in her as the weeks went by.

She cried less and slept less but she still did not leave her room. I decided it was something positive for the moment. She had become so accustomed to being in her room living around my uncle Miguel that I suppose it was her habit. I did not mind of course. We were able to spend time together without Marc Antoní's smirking gaze.

Before I knew it, it was time to leave and it was the night before I left. I knew that I dreaded this moment more than anything because it meant saying goodbye for a long time to the woman I loved more than anything.

I knew she was keenly aware of this; our bond was almost mystical. I dreaded seeing her in pain, I dreaded her reaction, and I could only hope it would be better than I imagined.

I came to her room that night as I always did, and yet my heart raced at the idea of entering it.

I saw her there in the dim light of her lamp, sitting on her bed against the headboard, her knees tucked up to her chest in the rather flimsy silken nightgown she always wore. There was something almost feral about her as I looked at her; her eyes were dark and withdrawn, her hair unbrushed. I could see her trembling as she sat there, staring into space.

I sat next to her on the bed and stroked her face.


Like a statue come to life, she clutched at my shirt and looked up at me.

"Please don't leave me! I beg you!" she cried, her eyes gleaming with tears.

I could feel my heart pounding in my chest, looking down at her with such sorrow. She had not begged me before and I could see such desperation in her eyes, her body trembling against me. I kissed her cheek and searched for the right words that seemed to get caught in my throat.

"You know I have to go. I am sorry."

"No, you can't! I'll die!"

I snickered,

"You will do no such thing!"

"I will! I will die without you!"

"Do you really think I wish to leave you? This is the hardest thing I have ever done and you are not making it easier for me." I exclaimed.

"Good!" she pouted.

I stood up and went to the bathroom, examining the bottle on the counter that the doctor had given her.

"Have you been taking your medication?" I asked.

"No..." she muttered. "I do not need it now. I don't need anything now—except you."

I let out a heavy sigh, sitting back down on the bed and I drew her close against me, trying to quell the frustration that grew in my heart.

"You need this." I implored, showing her the pills.

She pursed her lips and shook her head like a child refusing their medicine.

"It does me no good! It steals my soul and leaves me lifeless. I will not take them; you cannot make me."

I grabbed her by the arm, throwing her down the bed, wedging a pill into her mouth. To my surprise, she spit it out at me, sending it flying across the room. She scowled and her eyes gleamed with anger.

"Would you have me be..a zombie?" she accused.

"I want you to be well again!" I cried. "You are not who I love. Your pain is my own and I cannot bear it any longer. Be well so that I can go to Japan in peace."

"No. I won't let you go!" she cried, clinging to me even more desperately. "I'll die!" she screamed, sobbing hysterically.

"Please, don't do this to me."

I stroked her hair while she cried, trying to think of a way to reach her.

"I love you." I said, the first and most true thing that came to my mind. "I love you so very much and we belong together, you are right." she looked up at me, her tears ceasing. I brushed her hair out of her tear-stained face, continuing to stroke it while I spoke.

"But sometimes, I do not know how I should feel around you. Sometimes I can't breathe around you-"

"Vega, are you saying that I smother you?" she intoned sharply, her brows furrowed and her eyes gleamed.

"Sometimes...there are times when that is all I want! But now, I..." and I bowed my head. She was not to be outdone by my confession and she lifted my chin till I met her eyes.

"Do you trust me?" she inquired.

"I...I think maybe someday..."

"Someday?" her voice rose.

I shook my head, looking down.

"Someday—but, I love you! I love you more than anyone else! You are my truest love! I just-I just think that you need to let me go—just for a little while, just a little bit."

"You don't trust me and you want me to let you go? No!" she shrieked. "Never!"

"Just for a little while sometimes, that's all!"

Her face dropped and her eyes gleamed with passion.

"No..." she whined, vehemently shaking her head. "I won't. I won't ever!"

"We breathe the same air! We have the same blood-"

"How can that not be enough?" she cried.

"Because I need to be on my own some days."

"No! No no no no!"

She hugged herself tight, and she refused to look at me again.

I peered into her eyes and turned her to look at me.

"I won't leave you, I swear I will return to you. Don't you ever like being on your own sometimes? Away from me?"


I sighed.

"I'll die!" she screamed at me.

"You won't!" I screamed back.

"Oh but I will! You don't understand." she said, and she moved off the bed. There was a letter-opener laying on her vanity and she picked it up and sat on the bed before me. She lay the blade flat against her wrist.

Tears streamed down her cheek as she looked at me.

"Where shall I cut?" she asked.

She had never threatened to kill herself before but I did not let it phase me. This was all just more hysterics.

"You won't." I hissed and I grabbed the knife from her. "Do you want me to prove it to you?"

The terror washed across her face and her chest heaved.


I crawled over her, resting on my knuckles, the knife in my other hand. My luxurious hair fell into my eyes and I pushed it back, gazing into her eyes. Her mouth quivered, her eyes wide with fear.

"Do you want me to prove it to you?" I said once more.

I sat back on my heels, drawing the blade across my palm, watching in ecstasy the red blood gushing from the cut. She gave sort of strangled cry and moved her trembling hand over her mouth.

I smirked at her, leaning forward and taking her hand in mine.

"There's nothing to to be afraid of, I'll show you."

I drew the blade across her palm the same as I did mine and she cried out, arching her back. Then, I pressed our palms together, lacing our fingers.

"My blood is yours, your blood is mine. I swear by our blood I will return to you."

I stroked her face with my free hand and she cried softly, the tears falling down the corners of her eyes.

I leaned forward and kissed her tenderly; I could feel her trembling against me. I parted and looked down at her.

"With this kiss I seal our oath. Nothing can part us, not even death." I said and she drew her arms around my neck, pulling me forward into another tender kiss, but soon she dissolved into more sobbing.

"I...I don't want to die!" she sobbed.

"As long as you are mine, you will not die! I am death himself and to be loved by death means you will live forever."

"But, why? Why must you leave me? I can't bear it!" she cried.

"I know...I am sorry..." I muttered.

I could feel my chest begin to tighten again, after all I had done, she started in again.

"It isn't fair! It isn't fair!" she shrieked.

I growled, pinning her arms above her head.

"Stop it!" I yelled, looming over her.

"You claim to love me and still you won't let me go. You are so selfish! You kept my own father from me! My father!" I cried and it hit me again as I read her eyes, searching for answers.

"You didn't tell me wanted me all to yourself! You can't even share me with a memory!"
Her mouth quivered but she did not speak. I looked down and rubbed the cut on my palm. "How could I have given myself to someone like you?"

I could feel my throat becoming scratchy the more I began to yell at her, my chest tightening with my emotion.

"This room is destined to become my tomb..." she said mournfully, the tears overflowing down her cheeks.

I moved away from her and turned to leave.

"No!" she exclaimed. "Please don't go. Please?"

She moved before me now, and I watched her nightgown slide off her body, revealing her breasts and leaving her half naked. Perhaps I should have been shocked, appalled, dismayed by this—but I was not. After everything we had been through, there was little left to make me react to her.

I bent down, picking up her nightgown and threw it at her. She looked at me, her eyes were once again dark and smoldering; gleaming at me in the same way they were at the fight.

I smirked and stroked her cheek.

"There was a time when I wanted this...more than anything I could imagine—more than you could imagine," I could feel the bile rising in my throat as I spoke, surveying her figure. "But now I see. You're a liar-and a whore." and I turned away from her. She grabbed my hand but I shook her off.

"Live with your sins." and I slammed the door.

As I walked down the corridor to a room, I could hear her screaming my name again and again at the top of her lungs, an almost horrifying screech. I could feel my heart in my throat and I shook my head, wondering why she had not come after me. There was nothing I could do now and nothing she could do. I was leaving, and that is what I did.

Stay tuned for the Spanish Ninja's adventures in Japan! TO BE CONTINUED...


Marc Antoni, Victoría, i jo, 1966 Septiembre - "Marc Antoní, Victoria, and I, 1966 September"

[STREET FIGHTER]Origins of the Spanish Ninja:ch.21

CautionTRIGGER WARNING: dom. abuse, violence, rape/NC, blood & gore, etc. May be very disturbing to some readers. Reader discretion is advised.Caution 

Do you like Hitchcock suspense? The gothic drama of Anne Rice & VC Andrews? Do you want some hard hitting action? This story is for you! Rose  (WARNING: Contains graphic adult content. Mature readers [21+] ONLY.)

Follow the story of Vega's life through HIS eyes as he grows to become a daring matador, vicious cage fighter, and finally Shadowlaw's most ruthless assassin! The truth is more twisted than any lie...


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