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Mya closed the book she had spent the last few hours emerging in and sets it in her lap. Mother Nature comforts her in its beauty as the sunset painted the park in scarlet and gold hues before the evening's shades welcomed the moon.
A small girl who has fallen whines, interrupting Mya's peaceful experience with nature. Her mother rushes over, scoops the youngster into her arms, and gives her a cheek kiss. Mya shudders as she is reminded that she has never experienced situations like those. She frowns as she fixes her gaze on the mother and daughter, a tinge of jealousy stirring in her heart.
"My baby...is no longer a baby. Not anymore."
In her mind's eye, Mya remembers the last time she saw her daughter as she stared at the girl in her mother's arms. Nora looked so beautiful in her pink jumper and white hair bows. Noah did a great job with the girly details for a man.
Mya continues to watch people as the sun sets as she wraps her arms around herself and zips her jacket. A man in his seventies who had passed out drunk next to a water fountain is made fun of by four teenagers. Mya's jaw tightened and her nostrils flared as she witnessed them spit on him, yell at him, and poke him with sticks. She grips her book tightly to restrain herself from yelling at the kids.
"Why do we care so much for these people? Humans care nothing about one another or themselves."
She gives the boys one last glare before walking away.
Mya faces Light alone for the first time in her life; she has been hunting by herself for weeks without hearing from Noah. While she was kept away from her child for her safety, Noah made an effort to maintain their romantic relationship during their visits. More than that, he always maintained a weekly connection.
Mya slumbers on the bed of her cheap hotel room. She tries to ignore the stale smells of the old carpet and the cigarette smoke that clings to the drapes by thinking of Noah. She tried desperately to feel Noah's heart. Her energy expands before flattening, feeling nothing. Her eyes enlarge as she rises up.
"Where are you, Noah? Please show me you're okay. Why can't I feel you?"
As a sharp ache stabs through her gut, her racing thoughts come to an abrupt end. She drops to her knees.
Immediately standing. She allows her senses to tell her where the Light are. Mya spots a Light circling a dead human with dark hair. A few blocks from the hotel. Following at a safe distance, she watches as it drags the woman's body into an abandoned building in an alley.
As she reaches the door, she pulls out her spike. She stumbled a few steps in as the door slammed shut behind her. The undeniable presence of something chilly causes her heart to race and she comes to a complete stop.
"I refuse to go down without a fight. So, come on, you son-of-a-bitch!"
Swiftly turning, Mya rams her spike into the Light as it attempts to attack her from behind.
"I'd expect nothing less, Mya," a woman says.
"A Shadow. How do you know my name?"
Mya maintains a strong posture, tensing every muscle as she waits for her eyes to adjust to the darkness. I can't fight in the dark. While attempting to retreat toward the entrance, she is swept off her feet and slammed into a brick wall.
Mya braces herself against a wall once again, crawling to her feet. She gasps for air and attempts to get ready for the next hit. Before she can even breathe, she is already flying; her body bangs through the door and lands on the alley's pavement. Mya groans and tries to lift her dismembered body before she falls to the ground. Even with her broken bones, Mya drags herself to her feet, unwilling to give up.
"Come on! Let's end this!"
She swayed and stumbled, fighting mightily to keep her footing. Despite having blood covering every inch of her body and a massive swelling blocking her vision, she stands staring at the door, waiting for the Shadow to emerge. Her legs trembled, making it nearly impossible to maintain her standing position. Internal bleeding has nearly destroyed her vision, yet she wills herself to continue to stay strong.
Just beyond the entrance, the Shadow stops. The smoke that surrounds it gradually fades away and the silhouette of a small figure begins to take shape. Mya sinks onto her knees and clenches her chest as the figure lifts one of her hands, and tension crushes her heart.
"I'm really dying," Mya's mumbles spue blood.
"Oh, come on, Mya. That wasn't much of a fight. You promised me a fight," a woman says.
Mya sags, a weak smile forming over her lips. She is caught just before her head hit the ground.
"No," a man answers.
She winced, brows furrowed, and her brain tight with needling pain. Mya cradled her head upon opening her eyes. Sitting herself up in the bed, she inspects her surroundings while adjusting her eyes to the dim room. A glass of water on a nightstand next to the bed is illuminated by candlelight as it reflects off the room's white walls. Mya chugged the water till it was all gone. When the final drop enters her mouth, she frowns a little in sadness.
When she hears laughter coming from the other room, she gets out of bed. She approaches to have a better look at the Szion she feels.
"You may want to stay in bed, at least until morning."
A deep familiar voice comes from the corner of the room. Hesitant, Mya turns towards it.
"How long have you been standing there?" she asked.
"A few days, off and on," he replied while entering the glow of the candles. Mya's body becomes icy, and she is crying. His calm, sympathetic look renders her helpless. She exhales deeply and smooths her hair with her fingertips in an effort to calm herself. It is now that she understands why Noah has not returned to her. She looks away before sitting on the bed's edge.
"Is Nora alive?"
"He...Noah gave his life for her," he answered softly.