"Moon Hunters : Damian in Darkness"
Virgilio F. De leon Jr.
I woke up to darkness and a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach.Karin , she must be part of some syndicate. The kind that cuts people up and ship their parts somewhere. Maybe my organs would be harvested for one of those Black Market things and someone in Europe would end up with my kidneys. Lucky Kidneys , they would be Europeans for the rest of their lives and me I'd just be plain old dead.
I read somewhere that victims should be drugged.
I could still move though and I could still think , albeit absurd things like my kidneys in Europe. What I should really be upset about is the way Karin just sucked me to Oblivion, I have been bullied before but no one actually punched me and I mean to be knocked out by a girl, I'm not even the fighting type. Girls thought I was just the guy they needed to talk to get the grades. I could still feel my jaw aching.
I tried to stand up but only managed to hit my head , yup ,I'm already in a coffin. Good for me. My eyes should be adjusting right about now to this darkness but it seems not even ambient light is getting in here.
And of course just when I thought of light the top of my "Coffin" was now being lifted away.I could see torches all around me forming a circle of brightness that was burning my eyes. Several heads were looking at me , all of them masked with symbols on their foreheads.Funny thing is all of those symbols looked like flames in different shapes. A swirling one that looked like a tornado , flames shaped like a hand , A Phoenix , A circle of flame and one that looked like a cat blazing out of a cave.Hooboy. I might have been wrong about the Organ harvesting thing. I might be offered to some cults blood rites. Things just keep getting better and better.
The masked heads moved away and someone familiar looked down. It was Karin , I tried saying her name but it just sounded like a croak. She appeared very concerned and touched the side of my face where she socked me. I mean this is some weird sado-masochistic thing , she was touching me as if to apologize.
"Stand up Damian" Karin said , her eyes were much softer now even with all the flames reflecting in them. "I had to bring you here. The elders would need to know about you before the others."
I had a lot of questions but I was still pretty mad about this whole thing so I kept silent. I felt like I have been in this place before. I always knew that there were caves in the surrounding hillsides.When my Dad was still alive he would always take me even if all I did was doodle and complain about all the gear he was strapping on to me. This one cave , he pointed out a rock formation that looked liked a womans breasts. I didn't see what was funny but my dad was bursting to tears with laughter. I was seeing those same Breast formations now , a few feet away. Who knew there was a cult here. Who knew that my new classmate was part of it.
"Come with me Damian, the Elders are waiting" Karin said softly to break my never ending thoughts.
Karin held my hand and pulled me. Wow her hands are soft. I have never held a girls hand before , I don't think my mothers hands count. I was finding that Karins hands fit around mine just right.
She lead me through a series of tunnels and with each turn I thought that I would be further dragged into darkness , never to see the light of day. I never struggled or complained and this surprised me ,I did not feel fear and that is something to be said about someone who is constantly looking at shadows to make sure that they are not moving. This time with Karin though , these elders. I was overwhelmed more with curiosity rather than fear.What could they possibly want from a nerd like me?
This dark maze ended in a hall that was blazing with light. The whole place was carved of stone and there were alcoves of some unknown figures all leading from the entrance to the raised Dais in the center. I counted around 30 figures on the alcoves both left and right of me. The hall was not filled with masked cultists though. It only had 5 other people who were seated in the dais.I recognized the symbols on their foreheads from earlier but other than the masks they wore normal clothes.The tallest of them was in the center and 2 others were at both of his sides.
"Step forward Damian the Witness" the tall one said to me in a voice that did not offer the choice of resistance. Or basically the choice of resisting and not being able to live. So the choice was easy.I stepped forward and left Karin who blended in with the shadows of the alcoves.
"Bring out the prisoner"
At the side of the hall 4 Robed men , each of them having that Rasengan like thing pointed at a ragged looking man in the center. I could see that these were men that were built to defend and assault. They were huge and each of their robes had a diamond shaped flame. As they grew closer , I could see something different about the ragged man. He was walking and crawling at the same time , he had a few pairs of extra limbs and when he lifted his head he had a huge pair of antennae that suddenly flickered out of nowhere.
It made him look like a giant cockroach. And when he and his guards were a few feet away from me my nose told me quite frankly that he smelled like a cockroach too.
"So tell me Damian , what do you see?" The tall one asked.
"What? You mean about Cockroach guy over there?"
There was a collective gasp from all around the alcoves. I could sense that there were hundreds of eyes looking at me. The elders looked at each other and whispered amongst themselves. The murmurs from the shadows seemed to stretch on to an eternity. All because I could see the cockroach a few feet away from me. And Speaking of the roach guy he was looking at me with a smile that was reserved for nerds who have found a collectors comic book in the bargain bin.
"Karin, come before the light" one of the elders on the right said. She was a woman with a melodious but authoritative voice. Much like a grand mother would sound only tougher.
"Damian is now under your care. Instruct him and keep him till the next Full moon.Others will come for him. You must be there when they do."
Karin bowed to the woman and at the other elders. I felt like I should have said something. They were talking about me and I did not know what they meant about Karin taking care of me. She walked to my side and looked me in the eye. For a split second I saw pity in her eyes for me though I could not understand why.Then she smiled a sad smile.
"Karin...I just wanted to ask what they meant when..."
I never got to finish. I knew what would happen.I could see her fist coming at me. It surprised me that I did not step away.Before the blow hit me all I was thinking was. "There has to be a better way of moving me around."