~ Chapter 46: Eliza and Luthecia's tears ~
[Eliza's point of view]
When I heard the scream of my niece, I knew that something was wrong, but the first to act wasn't me, it was my nephew, Leonidas. The little boy ran so fast, I thought I saw a blur. I gave chase after him, but when he reached the door of their room, he was attacked by the kidnapper.
I didn't see what happened to Leonidas, but a powerful wind pushed me back, almost making me stumble down on the stairs. I managed to grab hold of the rails in the nick of time and gripped hard.
As soon as the wind stopped blowing, I steadied myself and rushed to the children's room.
What was that? Wind magic? I wondered.
On the floor, I saw the door ripped out of its hinges and blown apart. On the other side, the debris was scattered everywhere and made a mess of the whole room. From the looks of things, I only received the weakest part of the attack, which just pushed me back a little.
At that moment, I wanted to think or believe that Leonidas had been hit by that spell as well. I immediately assumed that the little boy was taken by the perpetrator and so I ran after him.
From the window, I saw a shadowy figure running towards the Chedelle Forest through the open field while carrying someone in their arms. He wasn't that far away, there was still a chance that I could catch him. If I didn't do anything now, we were sure to lose his trail by the time help arrived. Then, the best we could do was pray that Cassandra was still alive. She was a brave little girl, but I couldn't imagine how frightened this whole thing must have been for her.
Before I jumped off, I aimed my hand at the area in front of the unknown enemy and cast the spell that summoned a tall fire wall.
“Block the path of my enemies and breath fire from the ground. Let neither sword, arrow, or magic pass through your flames. [Fire Wall]!” I chanted.
In that moment, a three meters tall and sixteen meters wide wall of pure fire formed in front of the kidnapper, stopping him in his tracks. However, just as I was about to jump out and run up to him, I heard Luthecia's scream coming from behind me.
“NO! Young master!”
What? He's not with him? I thought and a chill ran down my spine.
I turned around and there, under the broken remains of the door and furniture in the other room, I saw my nephew Leonidas. From where I stood, I saw that he was bleeding from his nose, ears, and forehead. Luthecia was right there next to him, trying to get all of the broken wood off of his little body.
Seeing him in that state sent a shock through me. I couldn't believe I didn't notice him earlier. As for the maid, it was good to see that she wasn't injured by the earlier wind attack. She was downstairs with us, washing the dishes. If she was the first to climb up the stairs, she would have been heavily injured.
Is he... did he kill him? I thought and just then, I saw Luthecia lifting a board off his stomach.
Blood gushed out from the stab wound caused by a piece of sharp wood.
No... I thought.
With a jolt, I remembered the shadowy figure who ran off towards the forest and only now did I realize that Cassandra was nowhere in sight. That meant she was the one who got kidnapped.
I rushed back to the window, but now, the villain was long gone. Even my fire wall had been extinguished.
“NO!” I shouted upset and slammed my fist on the frame of the window, breaking it into pieces.
“Miss Eliza... Young Master... he... he.. what should I do?” the crying maid asked with tears in her eyes.
Her apron and both hands were stained with the child's blood.
“Is he...?” I asked in a trembling tone of voice, but I was afraid to finish my words.
Luthecia shook her head.
“He's still breathing, but with these injuries, I don't know how long he'll last... What should we do?” she asked.
Hearing this, I felt my hands shaking and knees turning weak.
It's my fault... I should have noticed the intruder... I should have stopped Leonidas and be the first to run up the stairs. Sister's precious children... my nephews... How could I let this happen to them? It's... It's my fault.” I thought.
Seeing me panic, Luthecia shouted at me. “Miss Eliza!”
I raised my head and saw her looking at me with shaking hands and tears flowing down her cheeks. We were both in a state of panic, but this wasn't the time to let it get to us. We had to pull ourselves together or else let alone saving Cassandra, we wouldn't even be able to help Leonidas.
Clenching my hands into fists, I took a deep breath and tried to calm down even if it was for just a bit. I tried to ignore the blood and urgency of the matter... I tried to stop my shaking.
“Leave things here to me, you go and get my sister. She should be visiting the Vlamyr Estate. Please go and get them... They know your face, but I look too much like a ruffian to get past the gates without a fight.” I showed her a wry smile.
“Very well... I'll... I'll go now.” she tried to get up, but her legs gave in, and she fell back on her behind.
Biting her lip, she struck her thigh with her fist to get the shock out of her and then tried one more time. This time, she succeeded.
“Don't let the young master die...” she told me as she walked past me.
Is it just me or does that sound like a warning? I wondered.
“I won't and you need to hurry. Go now!” I told her.
“I'm going!” she replied with a nod and then left.
With an unsteady step, I approached my nephew. Seeing him in this state, bleeding, with a broken hand and leg, I couldn't hold this aching pain in my chest anymore, and I started to cry.
This is all my fault! How could I let him go through this?! I should have been the first one on those stairs! I blamed myself for this attack.
Through my tears, I moved my hand over his stomach to check his wound, but there was nothing there except for a big stain of blood. Maybe I didn't see right? After all, nobody can heal so fast after being stabbed through the gut.
Note from the author: Thank you for reading this chapter, I hope you enjoyed it! Oh, and be sure to check out my other stories too!
Seeing how things have been a bit hard for me lately, I will try and focus around posting only at the end of the week, during a Friday or Saturday. I'm going to try the weekly chapter dump version of the schedule to see if this fits me better.
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