Chapter 8:

Chapter 7- The Trial

The Guardian: An Unfortunate Wish

We arrived safely back home. Doc explained what happened and told everyone to pack only the necessities and that we had to leave right away. Bookmark here

Gagan and Jasmine tried to talk to me, but I did not respond. All I could think of was my mother. How her body was lying on the cold pavement. I waited patiently until everyone was ready to leave. Bookmark here

We stepped out of the house just to be surprised by a group of soldiers who were already waiting for us. They forced us into their army jeeps. For some reason, they separated me from the others. I honestly did not care. I had no energy left. A soldier opened the door for me, and I went in without any resistance. He closed the door behind me, but it opened again only seconds later. To my surprise, it was Daiyn. Bookmark here

“I’m going to stay with her,” he told the soldiers and sat down next to me. Bookmark here

The soldiers looked at each other and did not say anything. The car started moving. To where? I had no idea. Bookmark here

“I’m sorry about your mother,” Daiyn whispered to me. He sounded sad. Bookmark here

“Yeah,” I replied but even saying just one word broke my voice. Bookmark here

My throat felt like it was closing up. I wanted to cry but somehow, I could not. No one spoke. It was getting dark. I watched how the sun disappeared behind the horizon. Bookmark here

It started raining. I remembered that it was raining too on that night. That night when you left me in front of the orphanage without saying anything. You just gave me a kiss on my forehead, smiled at me, and walked away. I just stood there in front of the door and cried. Bookmark here

If only on that night I would have grabbed your hand and never let go of you. Why did you abandon me? Why did you never come back? I had so many questions to ask you. Why was this all happening? Bookmark here

The moment I found you I lost you again. But this time forever. Without realizing it, I was resting my head on Daiyn’s shoulder. He did not say anything. Bookmark here

The jeep stopped. We were told to get out of the vehicle. As I stepped out, I realized that we were on the highest point on the mountain and that we actually left Deviion behind us. Bookmark here

I saw the others getting out of their jeep as well. In front of us was a huge wall with a huge gate made out of steel. Six soldiers were guarding the gate. You could not see what was behind the wall except a tower that was reaching the clouds.Bookmark here

I did not remember seeing it from the train. The gate slowly opened, and we went inside with the soldiers who brought us to this place. To my surprise, there were not only a lot more soldiers but also smaller buildings behind the wall.Bookmark here

One soldier caught my attention. He did not even look like a soldier. His uniform was more of a general’s. Another soldier approached him and saluted him. After they had a small talk, he looked in our direction. He had an expressionless face. I could not make out if he was angry or happy. I had a feeling that he was definitely someone I should avoid. Bookmark here

The tower was standing right in the center. It was made entirely out of bricks except for the door which was made again out of steel. We went inside it. As expected, there were more soldiers inside the tower who were minding their own businesses. Bookmark here

We were told that we had to stay here for the night. They took away our belongings including the weapons everyone was carrying. One soldier grabbed me by my arm and started dragging me away from the others. Bookmark here

“Where the hell are you taking her?” Jasmine screamed. Bookmark here

The soldier stopped in his tracks and turned around to face her. Bookmark here

“I was told that this girl has to be put in a separate prison cell away from the others,” he replied. “I am following my orders.” Bookmark here

I nodded towards Jasmine to let her know that it was alright. It would be for the best if we would just obey them. We were already in a difficult situation, and I did not want to make it worse for us by disagreeing with a soldier. It was the second time I was getting arrested. I could handle it and I did not care anymore what might happen to me. Bookmark here

I followed the soldier quietly but realized that he was pulling my newly fixed arm and that it started to hurt. But I thought to myself that I should keep my mouth shut. Jasmine had already provoked him, and I did not want to take any chances and make it worse for the others. Bookmark here

At that moment, someone grabbed the soldier’s arm and stopped both of us. I looked to my right to see who it was. It was Daiyn. What the hell was he doing? Bookmark here

“You can clearly see that she is in pain,” he said to the soldier in a firm voice. Bookmark here

“Take your hand off of me,” the soldier angrily replied. Bookmark here

“First you let go of her. Even an idiot would realize that she is uncomfortable right now. Her shoulder is injured. Furthermore, I don’t understand why you have to be rough with her. It was obvious that she wasn’t resisting you in any way, soldier.” I grabbed his arm to stop him, but he just continued on. “Tell me your reason why you are separating her from the rest of us? To me, it doesn’t make any sense.” Bookmark here

“I don’t need to tell you the reason kid. And looking at you, to me it does look like you are not only resisting but also obstructing her arrest,” the soldier said while shaking Daiyn’s arm off. Bookmark here

Great. Now the soldier was even more pissed, but Daiyn looked angry too. I had a feeling that this would end badly. Bookmark here

“It’s alright. I’ll just go with him Daiyn. It’s not a big deal,” I whispered. Bookmark here

“It is to me,” Daiyn said still looking at the soldier.Bookmark here

Was he now angry at me? I was confused. Bookmark here

“I will stay with her,” he said to the soldier.Bookmark here

The soldier gave in after seeing how intimidating and scary Daiyn was looking. And he let go of my arm. Bookmark here

We walked quietly behind him through the hallway and up some stairs to get to another hallway. I looked around to see if there were any other soldiers but there were none. The soldier stopped in front of a wooden door and opened it. He then turned around and made a gesture towards me and Daiyn to get inside.Bookmark here

It was a small room with one bed and a small window which had a steel grill in front of it. Probably to prevent anyone from breaking out of this room. Bookmark here

The door closed behind us and I could hear the sound of the door getting locked. I did not know what to do so I just stood there in the middle of the room. I was lost.Bookmark here

“You can have the bed,” said Daiyn while sitting down on the floor. Bookmark here

He leaned against the wall and stared at me. Bookmark here

“Thanks,” I said and moved my heavy body towards the bed, and sat on it. Bookmark here

“Get some sleep,” he ordered me. “It will be a long day tomorrow.” Bookmark here

To be honest, I was not sleepy at all, but I still laid down on the bed. I tried to fall asleep, but my eyes were open, and I kept staring at the ceiling. Bookmark here

After a while, I glanced over to Daiyn to see if he had fallen asleep. His head was leaning against the wall and his eyes were shut. He was sitting in a position where one leg was straight but the other one was bent, and his arm was resting on the bent leg. I bet it was uncomfortable sleeping like that. It reminded me of when I had to sleep on the floor in that prison cell with that weird old man. How could Daiyn fall asleep that fast? Maybe he was tired too. Bookmark here

I carefully stood up from the bed and tiptoed to him. I slowly crouched down next to him so as not to wake him up. I rested my arms on my legs and just stared at him. He was a brave guy. Always protecting everyone. I wondered where he got this habit from. Not that I was complaining. I just wished that I was like him. Maybe then I could have protected my mother.Bookmark here

“Is it that entertaining watching someone asleep?” he asked, startling me.Bookmark here

He opened his eyes and looked at me with his eyebrows raised. Was he expecting an answer from me? Because I was too embarrassed to even look at him. Bookmark here

“Can’t sleep?” he asked breaking the awkward silence between us. Bookmark here

“Yeah. I have too many things on my mind,” I answered. “A lot happened today after all. You know I didn’t even know my mother properly. I was six when she left me in front of an orphanage in the other world. I can’t remember anything about my parents. Maybe because I was too young. It still hurts. Losing someone you love.“Bookmark here

I could not end my sentence. The tears started falling down my cheeks. My heart was beating fast, feeling like it would burst. I was feeling hot. My body was shaking. Bookmark here

Daiyn wrapped his arms around me and did not say anything like always. I cried and fell asleep in his arms. Bookmark here

When I woke up, I was lying in the bed. It was morning. I sat up. Daiyn was standing in front of the door, and it looked like he was talking to someone. I realized that the door was slightly open. I stood up from the bed and walked towards him. Bookmark here

“What are you doing?” I asked him. Bookmark here

He turned around and simultaneously closed the door behind him. What was going on? Bookmark here

“Nothing,” he answered. Bookmark here

“But the door.“ Bookmark here

“Never mind that,” he interrupted me. “In a couple of minutes, some soldiers will come and take you away. The next time we will see each other will be in court. When you are being trialed just answer honestly. And if they mention anything about the incident with the creatures we encountered while searching for your father blame it on me. Do you understand?”Bookmark here

“I guess. But can’t you come with me? To be honest, I’m a bit scared,” I said while avoiding his eyes because I was a bit embarrassed. Bookmark here

“There is nothing to be scared about. We will be there with you. I will not let anything happen to you. Ever. Trust me on that,” he said while giving me the biggest and brightest smile ever.Bookmark here

It was the first time I was seeing him smile like that. It made me happy, but I had some doubts. Could I really trust him? Bookmark here

The soldiers came and took me away. Daiyn was taken away somewhere else. I wondered where the others were right now. I hoped that they were fine. Bookmark here

The soldiers took me down to the ground floor of the tower. I could not see any other soldiers walking around. It seemed like the tower was empty. We were waiting for someone. Whoever that person was he or she was taking their time. Bookmark here

He finally came. I had seen him somewhere. But where? Then I remembered that he was the guy in the general’s clothes from yesterday. You got to be kidding me. The soldiers saluted him. He stopped right in front of me. A bit too close. Bookmark here

“So, that’s her?” he said with an expressionless face.Bookmark here

I looked into his black eyes, but he totally ignored me. Bookmark here

“Let’s go,” he ordered the two soldiers.Bookmark here

“Yes, sir,” both soldiers answered. Bookmark here

This time, we were going underneath the tower. I did not know that towers could even have basements. Bookmark here

We entered a big hall which was filled with people. In the middle of the hall was a circle that was empty. Six people were sitting at a higher position on a podium on the other side of the room. They were wearing big, red cloaks and I could not make out their faces. As we were walking to the circle, I could feel that everyone was staring at me. It was dead quiet. Bookmark here

Arriving at the circle I started looking around to find the others but was stopped by the expressionless face guy. He grabbed my head and told me to kneel and to look straight forward. I did as I was told. Bookmark here

“Let the trial begin. General Claw, please introduce this girl and why she is being convicted,” said one of the judges.Bookmark here

The expressionless face guy stepped forward. Bookmark here

“Yes, Judge Hochmutt. The name of the convict is Ari Night, daughter of Nero Night and Louise Night. She is being convicted for trespassing to this world and trespassing a shutdown research laboratory,” he explained to the judges. Bookmark here

The people surrounding us started whispering as they could not believe that I was from the other world. Bookmark here

“Which shut down research laboratory?” the judge asked. Bookmark here

“The one where her father worked in,” General Claw answered.Bookmark here

“I see,” the judge said.Bookmark here

“Ari Night. Why did you come to this world? It seems to me that you are trying to find something. Or someone?” he asked me.Bookmark here

I raised my head to see his face. It was a face of an old man. Bookmark here

“I was searching for,“ I hesitated. “I was searching for my parents. That is why I came to this world. I went to the abandoned research facility to find some clues about my father’s whereabouts.” Bookmark here

“Was this your only reason?” he asked next.Bookmark here

“Yes, it was,” I answered.Bookmark here

“Now tell me how you managed to travel from your world to ours?” he inquired.Bookmark here

What should I answer? Could I bring grandfather into this? Daiyn told me, to be honest, but I did not have to say his name. Bookmark here

“Someone brought me here,” I said.Bookmark here

“I see. Can I ask who that someone was?” another judge asked.Bookmark here

“No need to answer him,” said judge Hochmutt. “I just wanted to see if you would name that person. I already know that only Nolan Dawson would do such a thing. But I am interested in something else. I heard of your mother’s death. My condolences. Apparently, she was killed by those frightful Caedes that attacked this kingdom this morning.” Bookmark here

“Caedes?” I asked out loud. “What are those?” I tried to stand up, but General Claw pushed me back down on my knees.Bookmark here

“Caedes are those monsters you have seen in the research facility and in the city of Deviion,” he explained. Bookmark here

“Can monsters even have names?” I asked jokingly. Bookmark here

“Yes, they can. Now, my question for you is if you know who created those monsters? Did Nolan Dawson tell you?” he asked. Bookmark here

“No, he did not. To be honest I don’t care. Whoever created them must be sick and crazy.” I said angrily.Bookmark here

“Even if it was your father Nero Night?” he asked me again. Bookmark here

“What are you talking about?” I asked annoyed. Bookmark here

“Caedes were a project that your father started. To modify human genetic material with the genetic materials of various animals. The result your father wanted was to enhance the limit of a human body. But unfortunately, in the middle of the process, your father went insane and created these monsters instead. The facility you broke into belonged to your father and is the birthplace of these monsters. We tried our best to stop him, but we were not able to reason with him,” he explained. Bookmark here

“So, my father is responsible for my mother’s death?” I inquired.Bookmark here

“Yes, indeed. And for many more. I want to show you one of the CDs you found. Bring it in,” he ordered.Bookmark here

I looked up confused. Why did the judge have the CDs we found? The door of the hall opened, and two soldiers brought in a television and placed it in front of me. Bookmark here

“Play it for her,” he ordered next.Bookmark here

The television was turned on and after a couple of seconds, something started playing on it. It was the hall in the research facility where we were trapped in. Someone was standing in the middle of the hall. I could not make out who it was because he was not facing the camera and the quality of the video was bad. But what I could see where those creatures called Caedes that were slowly approaching him. Bookmark here

I did not understand. Why was the judge showing me this? I knew what would happen next if the man did not run away. He will be torn into pieces by those monsters and that was exactly what happened. You could hear his screams, but I looked away just in time. I did not need to see another person’s death by these monsters. Bookmark here

After the video was finished, the same soldiers took away the television.Bookmark here

“Why did you show this to me? To show me how bad of a person my father is?” I asked Judge Hochmutt disgusted. Bookmark here

“No, that is not the reason why. I thought that it would be easier for you to believe me if I showed you this video,” he said. Bookmark here

“What easier to believe?” I asked him confused. Bookmark here

“That your father died. Killed by his own creatures,” he explained.Bookmark here

I stared at his face. He suddenly looked more cold-hearted and indifferent. How could he say those words with a straight face? At least show some sympathy while saying those words to me.Bookmark here

“When? When did he die?” I screamed at the judge.Bookmark here

“It was shortly after your parents dropped you off into the other world,” he said calmly. “Let me tell you the whole story of that video. Your father was not the only one who was in that research facility. He had a group of other researchers to assist him. But one day he went insane. It was when they created the first Caede. The other researchers didn’t know what to do with him, so they locked him up in a room and waited for instructions from the higher-ups. He managed to get out of that room and took you and your mother to the other world. They returned without you and your father declared you dead. He went back to the research facility just to find everyone dead. And the rest you have seen in the video. It seemed like the other researchers continued with your father’s work and managed to create more Caedes. Unfortunately, they lost control over them, and the tragedy happened. It is weird that Nolan Dawson did not tell you about it.“Bookmark here

“He knew?” I interrupted him. I was in disbelieve about what I was hearing. Bookmark here

“Yes, and so did your companions. This tragedy is in all three kingdoms known,” he said. “Tell him to come in.” Bookmark here

The door once again opened but this time, grandfather walked in. I stood up. I couldn’t believe it. Why was he here? Standing right next to me. Bookmark here

Wait. The CDs. It made all sense now. How else would they have the CDs? Daiyn told me to trust him but how could I? Every single one of them lied. At least he should have had the courtesy to let me know about my father’s death. Bookmark here

I knelt again. My tears were falling to the ground. I cried my heart out. Grandfather put his hand on my shoulder, but I pushed it away. I did not need anyone’s empathy. Especially not from him. Bookmark here

“Your punishment for trespassing into our world will override the punishment for trespassing the research facility of your father. Act 15, paragraph 1 says that whoever travels between the two worlds without permission will get the death penalty by execution. So says the law,” Judge Hochmutt continued explaining. Bookmark here

Death by execution? I guess the time had come where I had to take responsibility for my actions. I did not have anything to live for anyway. Bookmark here

My only regret was not being able to say goodbye to Cher. To be able to thank her for taking care of me. Bookmark here

“That’s it? Are we giving up, my young lady?” someone asked me while grabbing my chin and forcing me to look up.Bookmark here

It was a man, probably in his twenties. I had never seen him before in my life. Who was he? He let go of my chin and turned towards the judges.Bookmark here

“I object to your decision my honor. It would be such a waste to kill someone like her. She could be useful in the future. And you will agree with me,” he said to the judges. Bookmark here

“What are you saying Prince Jean-Luc?” judge Hochmutt asked him. Bookmark here

“I did some research about this woman my honor and it seems like she could be a valuable asset for all three kingdoms in the future. I am sure that you all know what happened at that research facility. Ari Night was bitten by one of those Caedes. Now the question you might ask is how? How could she survive a bite of a Caede when there is no antidote against the poison of the Caedes? A normal person bitten by one of them would easily die within thirty minutes. So why didn’t this woman die from it? The answer is very simple. This woman is the antidote against that very poison. It looks like she is immune to it. Attacks of the Caedes have been increasing recently and even if some people survive their attacks they soon die because of that poison. Therefore, this woman’s blood is very useful to us. We can’t waste it,” he elucidated. Bookmark here

“Oh, and I nearly forgot. I have another theory about the death of the researchers. We identified the dead researchers by their bodies, or shall I say their body parts that were found through the research facility except for one researcher. Benjamin Williams. His body was never found. Neither were any body parts of his. We only declared him dead because of the puddle of his blood we found. It came to my realization that the amount of blood he lost was a lot less than the blood needed to be lost to die from it. He could have easily survived. I know what you may be thinking. What if they ate every bit of him? First of all, it would have been messier, and he would have lost a lot more blood than he actually did. Secondly, the Caedes did not kill those researchers for food. They killed them for pleasure, looking at the other researcher’s bodies. The conclusion, Benjamin Williams is probably still alive and the culprit behind that tragedy. He is also probably behind Nero Night’s death. Or should I say murder?” he continued.Bookmark here

“It does not change the fact that this girl broke the law. Therefore, she must receive a punishment,” Judge Hochmutt insisted. Bookmark here

“I agree. But wouldn’t it go too far by killing her?” he asked smiling.Bookmark here

“What would you suggest then, Prince Jean-Luc?” judge Hochmutt enquired. Bookmark here

“I would suggest giving her to me, my honor,” he proposed. “But I also want to know what her wish is.” Bookmark here

He turned around and knelt down in front of me. Bookmark here

“Tell me. What is your wish?” he asked me as he got closer to my face.Bookmark here

I did not know what to answer. My wish? My wish was to find my parents. That was all I ever wanted but my wish died together with my parents.Bookmark here

“I don’t have a wish anymore,” I said to him.Bookmark here

“I think you do. Revenge for your parents. Make those people pay for what they did to them. If you come with me, I will give you the chance to do so and you will live. It’s your call,” he whispered into my ear. Bookmark here

I could tell by his voice that he was being serious. It did sound intriguing to take revenge on those people who did all of this. They deserved hell and worse. I wanted to make them pay for what they did. Bookmark here

“Fine. I’ll come with you,” I answered him determinedly. Bookmark here

“You made a good decision,” he said while standing up again. “You heard her. She is ready to go with me.” Bookmark here

He was not looking at the judges while he said that but was looking at Daiyn. Did they know each other? Bookmark here

“I shall take her with me then. It was a pleasure meeting you again judge Hochmutt,” he said, this time to the judges. Bookmark here

“Shall we go?” he asked me. The judges kept quiet, everyone did. Even Daiyn. Bookmark here

I stood up and walked with him out of the hall. Was I making the right decision? Bookmark here

I looked back to see the others as it might be the last time. To see Daiyn. We made eye contact, but I quickly looked away. Bookmark here

“Let’s begin the trial for Daiyn Dawson,” I heard behind me while I was walking out the door. Bookmark here

You can resume reading from this paragraph.