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Isabelle looked down at her mother lying on the floor. They were so much alike. Same blonde hair. Same blue eyes. Both tall and thin.

Except Isabelle wasn’t a mage like her mother or sisters. She was the odd one out. The one that didn’t belong. A disgrace. A shame. A waste of her mother’s blood.

For a brief moment, the woman looked hopeful as her  fourteen year old daughter stepped into the dark room deep underground. One of her children had dared the ruins to find what had become of their mother. One cared enough to find her. She wouldn’t die here alone.

Then she saw the knife in Isabelle’s hand. Heard the whisperings of the creature behind the wall. Smelled the hate wafting into the room like rotten meat.

Mother scowled and gripped her cursed hand. It was completely black now. “Leave.” Isabelle didn’t even bat an eye. She stared, her blue eyes devoid of any sort of emotion. “Leave, Isabelle.”

Nothing on the girl moved. No shoulder shrug. No rolling of the eyes. She just stood there, staring at her mother. “You’re dying.”

Mother bit her lip, then forced herself to sneer. “Don’t sound so sad about it.” When Isabelle didn’t do anything still, Mother turned her side to her daughter and rubbed her good hand over her tainted arm. The black tendrils had seeped all the way up and were heading for her heart. She could feel them tracing up her veins like worms crawling through her muscles. If she was right, she only had hours left. Hours. Not enough time to climb out or make a will or say goodbye to her two other daughters.

Her other daughters. The thought brought her to the edge of tears. They were so young. Isabelle was practically an adult now. Elleese and Arrissa were so little. They would die out in these woods without her.

She had to think of her little girls. “Do something right for once in your life and leave. Take your sisters home so at least they can become good mages.”

Isabelle took a couple more steps into the room and Mother gasped. Now that she was in the light, Mother could see Isabelle was covered in blood. Her hair and back were coated in it.

Had she killed her sisters? The knife was clean but —

“Good mages,” Isabelle commented, breaking Mother out of her thoughts. “I’m sure they will be.” Mother tried to hide a little sigh of relief. The others were okay. “But we can’t all be good mages, can we?”

Mother sneered. “And who’d fault is that? You have the blood. You’re just too weak to use it.”

All those hours. All those years. All a waste on a child who just couldn’t do it.

In the back of her mind, mother heard the monster sealed here whisper something about failure. She didn’t pay it much attention. It wanted to hurt her before it killed her.

The tendrils in Mother’s arm tightened. Pain ran from her shoulder to her heart. Until now, it hadn’t hurt. Now it was tightening its hold. Mother doubled over, trying to not cry out and failing. In her mind, she could hear the monster laugh.

“No!” Isabelle shouted. “She is mine! You promised!”

Mother’s eyes went wide and she pushed back up. There was only one person Isabelle could be talking to. “You … you can hear the monster?”

A twisted grin spread over Isabelle’s face as she stepped further into the room. “I want to kill her.”

It wasn’t true. Isabelle was just angry and trying to scare her. She didn’t really mean it.

Mother straightened up as best she could. “Oh, so you’ve come for some vengeance, huh? Revenge for pushing you to some potential you never had? For your own failures as a mage?”

The completely emotionless look returned to Isabelle’s face. “No, mother. Not vengeance. I’m just collecting what I’m owed.” The sick grin returned. “What the monster promised me for setting her free.”

The bottom dropped out of Mother’s stomach. Isabelle was serious. She’d come to kill her. She’d come to release the monster. This was a shock, and yet at the same time, not. Something about Isabelle had always been off. Wrong. Just a little more cruel than a child should be.

Mother pushed back against the wall. “Isa … Isabelle, you … you can’t.” Isabelle kept walking towards her. “I’m your mother!”

As her daughter came closer, she could feel the monster’s presence in the room. It was behind her daughter, dancing with glee. Finally, it had what it wanted for so long: a willing victim. It would be free. All that she had done to keep the monster here undone in this moment by her failure child.

Closing her eyes, Mother sent out a silent prayer to anyone who would listen. Someone, stop her. Someone … kill my daughter.
FFM Day 9 and I'm jumping in with the dark stuff. This is done to the prompt "Oh I'm not here for revenge, honey, just collecting what's due." - by bookcrusher. I used a villian of mine from my Kithryn Mythrin books who killed her own mother to gain power. Granted, her mother wasn't exactly the nicest in the world. She was emotional abusive. It's part of what is wrong with Isabelle.

At any rate, enjoy this bit of super creepy fiction.
Teela-Y Featured By Owner Jul 20, 2018   Writer
I love how you captured the darkness present in this piece. There's an anger here that's very tangible! 
KiriHearts Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2018
Super creepy is right, but I thought it was well done. You can sort of tell immediately that things are going to end badly.
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Submitted on
July 10
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