Authors: Cynthia Austin
He began to have second thoughts now.
“I should have known not to pursue this,” he yelled as he paced back and forth in the cold, dark room. Turning, he pointed the dagger at my face. “I told
not to pursue it.”
There was no point in listening to Adrian, so I turned my focus back on Ray, refusing to give up. “Wake up, Ray,” I pleaded.
Denial is a cruel bitch.
Adrian now looked like a caged panther as he foolishly reasoned to himself. “I knew better than this. You weren’t ready. Not as long as
was still around.” Gripping his black hair, he hunched over and brought his elbows to his knees in frustration. “I was so stupid to think that just because I killed him you would forget him. You’re too damaged. It’s been too long. I took too long to find you. Damn my father.”
He dropped the knife and continued to pace back and forth on the cold floor. At that point, my instinct for survival began to kick in and I realized how imperative it was for me to escape.
I calmed myself enough to speak. “Adrian. I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
Collecting my thoughts, I attempted to buy some time. I scanned the room, looking for the fastest way out.
“I told you not to get involved with me unless you were serious. Did you think I was joking, Sidney?” He gripped my shoulders as he shouted directly in my face. “Does it look like I’m fucking
My mind screamed out,
Oh God, now it’s my turn. Now he’s going to kill me.
But my voice was more defiant, “Stop it. Adrian. You’re hurting me!”
He let go of me and tried to get a grip on himself. “It shouldn’t hurt like this. Love shouldn’t hurt this bad, Sidney.”
God, he was nuts. How did I not see this before?
Why didn’t I listen to those warning bells?
Now I only spoke to survive. “I’m sorry, Adrian. I didn’t mean to hurt you,” I said as I slowly began to rise to my feet, reluctantly tearing myself away from Ray’s lifeless body.
I’ll come back for you Ray,
I silently promised him.
I won’t leave you here.
Adrian laughed as he shook his head. “You didn’t mean to hurt me?” His voice was sarcastic now. “Of course you meant to. What did I really expect, though? Looking for love from a girl who doesn’t even know the definition of it. A girl rejected by her own parents left chasing after some loser guy who couldn’t give two shits about her,” he spat in the direction of my lifeless boyfriend.
I slipped back into the shadows on the cold dark floor, emotionally sinking as low as I had ever been in my life. Nothing he said was surprising; and maybe it shouldn’t even be taken seriously coming from a madman. But his words still cut me deep. How could he be so hurtful?
Then, he shifted his emotions again.
He rushed over to the corner and knelt down in front of me full of remorse. The rage slowly faded inside of those emerald irises. But I knew better than to trust this demented excuse for a human being or whatever the hell he was. The lunacy was not gone, it was merely circumvented as Adrian pleaded for me to understand his twisted rationalizations as he attempted to explain away his unspeakable crime. “I-I’m sorry,” he stuttered. “I was out of line. I didn’t mean to say that.”
Out of line?
He just fileted my fiancé’s throat and gleefully laughed as he lay dying. But only his words were “out of line?”
He reached out to my face but I swatted his hand away like a disgusting fly. “Don’t touch me!”
He took a step back, surprised by my outburst, and so I aggressively took this opportunity to flee. Pushing past him, I made a beeline for the staircase but he was too quick and grabbed my wrist. I ripped my hand away and slapped the side of Adrian’s face as hard as I could. He was still in a crouching position and the blow of my hand knocked him completely on his back. Using his moment of vulnerability, I spun around and headed for the marble stairs.
Adrian was not about to give up that easily.
He lunged, face first, across the floor and reached for my ankle, doing everything he could to keep me with him. His grip was so forceful it was like a cement block pulling my entire body to him. My ankle flew backwards as my upper body began to free fall into the darkness.
The last thing I heard was the sound of my head cracking against the marble step. I felt the rush of warm liquid spilling onto the cold floor.
God Hates Us
I was still in the Garden. It was my last night with Samael and we were desperate to break this curse that was about to be thrust upon us.
I clutched Samael’s mother’s necklace tightly with one hand as I held my other palm up toward Samael. He brought it to his lips.
“Not a day shall pass that I will not think of you, my sweet Eve,” he promised.
His words ripped through me, causing a shudder of pain because I knew once I passed through the gates my memories would be ripped away; stolen by his cruel, heartless Father. The thought of my life without Samael seemed unbearable, but a life where I did not remember him was simply not worth living.
“I can’t go on without you,” I cried. He forced a smile of reassurance on his face but the concern in those green eyes could not be concealed.
“Do not fear, Eve. I shall find you. I will always find you.”
He gripped my hand tight and with his other hand, he swiftly slid the sharp blade of the ruby dagger across my palm. He then did the same to his own hand. Together we let our blood drip into the necklace. He snapped the locket shut and placed the chain around my neck. Kissing me, he made me promise once again to never remove the necklace until I grew old and neared my last breath on earth. At that time, I was instructed to pass it down to my next of kin, for the necklace was to be a talisman which would hold our blood, our souls, and our memories. Forever and a day.
Although we both knew better not to trust the wicked man we called the Snake, we had no other option. Samjaza had offered his help at a time when we could not afford to refuse it. Our blood on the necklace was the next of many steps the Snake had in store for us. After our blood was mixed within the necklace we were to take the pendant back to Samjaza and he would place his magic in it. The necklace would forever act as Samael’s guide to me.
Again, I began to get second thoughts when I thought of living the rest of my days without the man I loved. “I beg of you, Samael. Do not leave me in this hell forever.”
He spoke the same promise. “I shall not rest until I am with you again.” He grabbed my face and kissed me fiercely. “Now come, we must meet Samjaza tonight and learn of the next task.”
I watched intently as Samael took a nervous breath, attempted to regain his composure, and flashed me his confident smile before knocking on the rickety wooden door.
The old man cracked the door open and peeked his pale gray eye out at Samael and me. As soon as he saw that we had come together, a slick smile spread across his face, revealing his jagged yellow teeth as his eyes darted back and forth between the two of us.
“Ahh…the young Prince has arrived. And he brought his delicate flower with him,” he cackled, waving his long dark hand at us.
It made me nervous the way the Snake was staring at me, probing me with his unsightly, beady eyes. Samael sensed my unease and placed his body in front of mine. I clasped my hands tightly around his shirt, never wanting to let him go.
Samjaza smirked. “We both know very well that your Father would not approve of our meeting.”
Samael grew impatient with every passing second that was not being used to enhance our situation. He was not in the mood to listen to the Snake’s commentary and it was causing my lover to shift his weight from one foot to the other.
“My Father is not aware of the everyday activities I occupy myself with, Samjaza. He is not my keeper.”
“Oh, on the contrary, my friend,” the evil man boasted with a hearty laugh. “Was it not your Father’s specific instruction to have Eve banished from the Garden in the first place? After he found out about your indiscretions, or as you put it, everyday activities?”
Now Samael was beyond impatient and I sensed he was a little nervous too as he scanned the surrounding fields, seeking out any possible spies of his Father.
“Will you let us inside or not, Samjaza? I’ve brought gold and plenty of it,” he said in a hushed, but firm whisper.
“Oh foolish boy. You know as well as I it is not gold that I seek.”
“I’ll do whatever you ask, just let us inside. Now make haste, please!” Samael begged.
The Snake smiled a repulsive smile and opened the door wider. “That’s more like it. Come in children, yes…by all means, come in.”
Samael took my hand as he shoved his way past the Snake and we entered the hut. I could tell by his movements that Samael was becoming more frustrated with every second he spent with Samjaza. Although we were at the Snake’s mercy and needed him badly, it did not change the fact Samael still despised the wicked man.
Once inside, Samael began to explain the situation at hand but before he finished his sentence, Samjaza reached out toward my neck and slipped the pendant off. He dipped it in a brew of bubbling red liquid that was roasting over a fire in a cauldron.
“I told you, child, I’ve been expecting you. There’s no need to explain. We all know why you’re here.”
He began chanting a phrase of Latin words over and over for what seemed like hours. The entire hut was smothered in a massive wave of heat and I wasn’t sure how much more I could take of these unbearable conditions. Not only was it hot, but the stench of the dead animals that lined the entire perimeter of the hut made my stomach churn with overwhelming nausea. I glanced over at Samael and I could see he was also suffering in these conditions.
His entire cotton shirt was drenched in sweat and his black hair was matted across his forehead. Upon seeing my face contorted in discomfort, he began to scan the hut in search of some water, but saw no basin in site.
“My lady is in need of refreshment. She is in distress,” Samael said forcefully.
The Snake ignored his request as he remained in his place above the boiling cauldron. “The soul is the most powerful source to the body.” His eyes remained shut. “But without a body the soul cannot live.”
More interested in answers than water, both Samael and I stood silently, waiting for the old man to continue. The Snake opened one gray eye and stared directly at Samael. “At least, not without magic.”
He walked across the room and swiftly placed the brass chain back around my neck, where it belonged. “The pendant has been enchanted. Eve is ready to make her journey now.”
The two men stood and stared at each other for minutes in silence. I could see by the look on my lover’s face that he was not convinced concerning the promise the Snake had made about my enchanted necklace.
Finally Samael said, “Then what…how do I find her after she leaves?”
His voice began to rise with each additional question he asked. He was desperate for answers, ironic since he was addressing the biggest liar in the universe.
“Eve’s soul will go into the necklace and wait until you are able to find her again and free it,” Samjaza explained while shrugging his shoulders, as if it were common knowledge.
Samael put his hand to his face and began stroking his chin as he bent forward. I could see he was trying to remain calm but the Snake’s nonchalant demeanor was getting the better of him.
“And do you think you might discover a way to free me from these forsaken gates?” Samael growled, trying ever so hard to contain his burning fury.
I understood his anger, as I was feeling much of the same. Our time was running out and I was beginning to feel we had just wasted the last hour with an old, impotent fool.
“Of course I can,” Samjaza replied with a wave of his bony hand. “But that will be discussed later. Meet me at the gates on the morrow and we will discuss the last step.” His gaze crept back to me and a smile stretched across his leathery face. “Make sure you bring the girl.”
“And what of payment?” Samael asked as we were both being pushed out of the hut by the tiny cretin.
“That too will be discussed later.”
I shot straight up, my breathing heavy and uneven. The dreams were back. And I was no longer a spectator. I had assimilated the identity of Eve. Adrian was right when he told me I was she.
I wiped the sweaty mess of brown hair off my forehead and searched around the dark room. I needed to find Adrian and tell him I remembered his words. I had to inform him the Snake did live up to his word and we could be together again.
But then I remembered who I was and where I was, and more importantly, what he had done. I had awakened from my dream and was now thrown back into the reality of my nightmare. Did it really matter if my dreams were true?
a murderer. I couldn’t forget or ever forgive that fact.
The mausoleum was dark and empty. I searched the blackness but there was no trace of him.
He was gone.
I crawled over to Ray’s broken body. He was still lying in the exact spot I’d left him. Again, I tried to bring him to life but it was no use.
Then I remembered the words Adrian had shouted after he’d killed Ray.
“I destroyed his perfect Adam.”
I knew now my dreams were not imaginary, they were real. And in believing them, I accepted the fact that I was Eve and Adrian was Samael. This also gave me hope because Adrian had called Ray, Adam.
Could it be possible that Ray was just as much a part of this absurdity as I was?
Could Ray’s soul have woken up someplace…in the Garden?
Oh my god.