In the Air of the Night
Written by Dina Natour
He swallowed a curse as he walked down the pathway out the city of Aar to the forest.
Those two places were very different, one was noisy and full of good people, while the other was terrifyingly dangerous, and the good people of Aar spoke scary bedtime stories of it. They say that you hear sounds there, like the singing of fairies or sylphs, like the ringing of a thousand tiny voices in your ear. Idaios Distel reminded himself that an arrogant robber like himself should not believe in such things, and that a “noble man” like him should not curse, especially in the company of his young student. The boy went by the name Shadow. The profession that Idaios lives by needed more than a name, and sometimes more than a face. And Shadow was used to changing appearances, which is why Idaios agreed that he accompanies him on his journey.
At that moment, Shadow had dark blue hair and violet eyes, but Idaios knew that his hair was brown and his eyes were blue.
Shadow always followed Idaios, but he never said why. Because he himself did not know why. He did not show Idaios how much he admires him. He went through all the hardships of Idaios’s job just to stay next to him, he did not mind the weather and did not complain about the food that always tasted the same. He just wanted to stay next to him, because Idaios made him feel safe. Idaios did not think of him like that though. Idaios only wanted to find his long lost son.
Shadow would’ve bet all his contact lenses that he did not look like him. Even though he was in his forties, Idaios looked quite strong, he was slightly muscular. And he had dark skin, dark eyes, a very handsome face, and stubbles covered his jaw line, like a boy’s first beard.
Shadow would’ve also bet all his contact lenses that his son was dead.
There was a tiny notebook in shadow’s pocket, he wrote in it when he had the time.
“In the air of the night I watched him as he sat silent on the roof” he once wrote,” hot breezes ruffled his hair and for a moment I felt jealous. “Like people", he said quietly as he looked up to the stars. He hated meaningless questions and I wasn't sure what to say. "Far by measure?
Yet close by heart?”. A small smile found its way to his lips... my friend... my hero... my fighter... and my sacrifice smiles upon my ignorance.
"Never thought of it like that...but yes. I meant we see them glow after they are gone".
"Not all people leave a trace behind them though", I said.
"What we leave behind us is a part of ourselves, good people are never forgotten".
That was how he reshaped my mind with what he whispered. This was the trace he leaves.
The part he left for me”. Most of the note book contained what Idaios taught him, what he said, and what he did.
“We will find him, I’m sure. He must be in the next village”, Idaios grumbled in annoyance, there was no trace of his son, Marcus, in Aar.
“How old is he supposed to be?”, Shadow stared ahead.
“He is as old as I am then! We shall become friends!”, Shadow smiled widely.
Idaios laughed quietly. “You will not befriend him. He was five when we parted at war, but I know that he is smart and hardworking. You are dumb and slow, kid”.
Shadow’s smile faded, he felt his lungs tighten and his heart squeeze. He summed up all his courage to talk back. “I’m not that dumb”, he said, voice shaking.
“Yes you are, Shadow”, Idaios replied.
Shadow was now angry more than upset. He clenched his fists, and jealousy set fire to his words. “He is dead”, he said loud and clear.
Idaios stopped walking, stopped functioning, he saw them. The angel and the demon of the Firedrake’s Forest. Aurora and Medoth.
“He doesn’t want you to find him, he wants you all to himself”, said Medoth.
“No, he cares about you, he is helping you”, said Aurora.
They were toying with his thoughts and poisoning them. Idaios felt his head pound with pain.
“What was your son’s name? Marcus, wasn’t it? He doesn’t want you to find Marcus”, said Medoth, she made his blood boil and his thoughts echo.
“He loves you, and he loves Marcus” said Aurora, she had a soothing voice, and Idaios later on decided that if water had a voice it would sound like Aurora’s. Medoth clasped her hand on Aurora’s mouth. “Punish him”, she hissed.
“Idaios? Please don’t be upset, we’ll find him”, shadow muttered. He was confused, for he could see neither Medoth nor Aurora.
Idaios aimed a hard punch to Shadow’s face, and with another one he sent him to the ground. Shadow did not fight back, his love for Idaios did not allow him to. Idaios then within seconds was on top of Shadow. He took out his dagger and carved pure hatred on Shadow’s chest.
And shadow never fought back.
“He must have been fooling you, leading you to wrong places the whole time”, Medoth spoke again.
With that Idaios sent one last strike to Shadow’s heart. And with that he shall never know that he will look forever for what he already had lost. Shadow was Marcus, and Idaios shall never know he killed his own son. And in the air of the night Shadow did not talk to Idaios about stars,
he just died.
A strange song started to play. It sounded far away yet impossibly close.
Like the singing of fairies or sylphs.
Like the ringing of a thousand tiny voices in Idaios’s ear.