Zephyr Layten
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The Name Is Misunderstood [story]
My feet crashed down into the puddles decorating the stone street, making loud splashes as I ran. I gotta get away.... As the voices behind me grew louder I could hear the smack of my feet on the road quickly getting more together like my own two feet were racing with my own pounding heart. It was only when I was out of the town entrance that I burst into a full out sprint, not wanting to look back at the outraged faces screaming at me.
"Get back here you brat!" hollered one of the men, the chef that first joined the chase I assumed.
"What are you waiting for, shoot him!" shrieked a woman.
"Hurry up Sheriff! He's dangerous and he's getting away!" one of the other men agreed. That was when a wolf howled, right in perfect unison with the fire of a gun in the night. I screamed out in pain less than a second later, tripping and falling as I clutched at my shoulder and hit the ground.
This is it... I'm going to die... I remembered seeing a bit of a dark crimson liquid starting to pool around my head, but my eyes fell shut as I fought to stay concious.
"What's going on here?" Those were the last words I heard before everything around me turned to black.

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I woke up with a groan, trying to ignore the throbbing pain in my head and shouler but failing. It hurts... Why's it hurt so bad....? That was when I noticed the ground was shaking slightly, which caused me to jolt to a sitting position before clutching my head with one hand and grasping my shoulder with the other. Make the pain go away....
"Take it easy, OK..." I jumped again at the sound of the deep soothing voice. As he laughed my eyes fell onto a silhouette of someone in a long coat and a hood.
"W-who a-are you...?" I stammered, failing at not appearing terrified. He's going to kill me....
"Forgive my rudeness," he moved from his seat, sitting by me in the light on the floor of the horse drawn carriage, "my name is Nerian Mirza." I couldn't see his face, instead seeing only the dark black shadow being cast by the hood that was up and covering his head. My eyes quickly and nervously looked him over, trying to figure out if this new man was dangerous or not. His coat was black, with what appeared to be belts holding the coat closed across his torso along with one going fully around his waist. More of the belts criss-crossed over the forearms of the coat, and it was then that I noticed the thin line of red lining every edge of the coat and hood. "And who might you be?" my eyes instantly went to the shadowed area I knew his face was as he pulled me out of my inspection.
"I-I-I...." Who am I....? Those three simple words went through my head, hitting me hard and causing tears to well in my eyes. Who am I.....? I.... He seemed to notice my struggle, or at least that's what I thought, and he then calmly placed a hand on my knee.
"Your name... What is it people call you by...?" I could feel warmth radiating off both his words and the gentle hand on my leg.
".... I-I-I...." I swallowed as I tried to find his eyes hidden in the darkness. "I-I'm called K-Kira...."
"Kira?" His tone reminded me of the others who had heard the name spoken, their eyes widening at the simple mention of what I was called.
He must be afraid like the others.... I lowered my gaze to the boards under me, catching a small glimpse of the gravel passing by between a small crack in the carriage bottom. At first I didn't remember how I'd gotten here, and then I remembered why. "What happened to those people?" my wide eyes went to him as I asked.
"You mean those people from the village?"
I nodded in response. Did... Did he...?
"I had a little talk with them after you went unconscious... They seemed to want you gone, maybe even bad enough to kill you...."
".... They tried...." I quietly muttered, thinking he didn't hear.
"Tried what?"
"N-nothing," I stuttered quickly. Who is this man....?
"Kira," he lifted my chin, forcing me to look into the shadow that seemed to closely resemble that of death, "what did those people do to you?"
I didn't want to answer, though my reason why was probably that of fear. If I tell anyone they'll..... I shook my head as though that could erase the memory of the things they had said and done before I blacked out.
"Kira, please.... I won't hurt you, I promise."
"That's what they said...." I responded as I hugged my knees to my chest, easily growing more terrified of the hooded man.
"I'm not like those people.... I would never hurt an innocent child like you...."
Innocent child.....? I looked at him with a confused sapphire eye, my hair falling in an odd way to cover the eye patch over my left eye. That's the first time someone's called me that....
"You're nothing more than a child," he stated as he removed his hood, revealing a stunning color of wine red strands, "something to be cared for and nurtured." I froze as his eyes fell on my right eye, amazed at what I saw.
His eyes..... They're the same color as my eye.... He smiled after a moment of staring, then carefully pulled me into his lap. But how are they the same color....?
"See.... I'm not that scary, am I?" he grinned.
I shook my head, my eye still on his. How is it the same....?
"We should probably take a look at those injuries of yours..." Before I got a chance to protest he set me on the bench of the carriage, gently easing off my loose white shirt to reveal bandages I hadn't known were there. "As I guessed," he sighed, "these need changed...."
".... How'd I get these...?" my eyes were now on the white strips around my shoulder, noticing a small reddish-pink spot. What's that...?
"... After I talked with the towns people I took the first carriage out and got bandages for you.... You were bleeding pretty badly after the bullet was removed..."
"B-bleeding...?" I looked at him with wide, terrified eyes. That means there's blood.... Maybe lots of it....
"Yes..." he was careful as he started to remove the bandages, noticing I refused to look near the wound once they were off. ".... Is something wrong Kira?"
"N-no...." It's on me.... It has to be, it's MY injury... How can it not be on me...? He seemed to take notice to my fear, instead trying to block my view as he worked.
"..... Kira...?"
"Y-yes...?" I flinched as he started to clean the wound with water.
"... Are you afraid of blood...?"
I'm not afraid.... I'm completely terrified.... His eyes went to me when I didn't answer, so I gave a small nod before he went back to fixing me up. I was confused at why he didn't question it, but I was also glad he didn't. After all, if he had asked why I was afraid I would only tell him I didn't know, because I didn't. All I knew was that I'd had this fear for as long as I could remember, and I didn't know why.
"There," he gave me a warm-hearted smile, something I had never seen before no matter how much I tried to remember. "All done, you can look now."
I stayed silent, not wanting to look out of the fear he was only lying, out of the one fear that he hadn't bandaged it, instead leaving the wound exposed for all to see, including myself. It's OK now... You won't see it.... I took a deep breath, then hesitantly grabbed my shirt, flinching when I tried to lift my right arm.
"Let me help," Nerian said as he very gently helped me put the shirt back on. I wasn't sure how to react to being treated like I was some fragile doll that would break if I was even touched with too much pressure, but I kind of liked it. "Does your head hurt?"
"N-no..." I lied. "Not r-really..." I had to admitt, it did hurt a little, but then again, I'd also been through much worse.
"Are you sure....?" I couldn't answer under his caring gaze. No one had ever looked at me that way. I was Kira, the only child to be looked at like some freakish street performer, I was never treated like the other kids. After all, they had no problem locking me in a basement with no food or water, and they never even gave so much as a reason why. "Kira.... If it hurts I want you to tell me... I don't want you getting hurt worse just because you said you were fine when you weren't..."
".... Well," I whispered, "i-it hurts a li-little...."
"Let me have a look, 'kay..." I nodded in response before he carefully began looking over my head. "... What happened to your eye...?"
"I... I-I don't remember..."
"Is that so..." After that we sat in silence, simply waiting for the carriage to stop, though as to where, I couldn't say.

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Nerian Mirza
"Kira," I whispered as I lightly shook the boys shoulder. "Kira... Wake up... We're here...." He groaned a little but turned onto his side with his back to me. Guess I'll just have to carry him.... I let out a sigh, carefully lifting the sleeping child into my arms before climbing out of the carriage. "Thank you for helping us get here sir."
"It's no problem," grinned the driver, "I was on my way here anyhow. You have a good day now." I nodded as he rode off, examining the area around us.
"I should probably find us a hotel..." It was only after I had found the inn that I laid the sleeping child in bed, a small smile coming to my lips as I lightly ran a hand through his hair. He seems so sweet... So why did those people want to hurt him...? With an almost forced sigh I rose to my feet, removing my hooded cloak and tossing it into a nearby chair. As I walked towards the bathroom I found myself inspecting my clothes, the grey shirt torn in several places with threads coming undone. My loose, black cargo pants held a slightly lighter color in some places from what I assumed was dirt and maybe even dried mud along with a few holes near the knee from being worn so often. Maybe I'll take him to get new clothes too...
I quickly washed my face, going back into the room as my eyes fell on Kira. He looks so peaceful when he's asleep... Not like he was when he first woke up.... "How are you feeling?" I questioned as he started to wake up.
"Huh....?" he responded tiredly. "Where.... Where are we...?"
"We're at a hotel in one of the towns the driver was passing through..."
"A... A hotel...?" he gave a blank stare, almost as if he had no clue what I was talking about.
"Yeah, ya know, those places that offer a place for travelers to stay if they can afford it..."
"Oh...." I could see his good eye looking around the room in a confused manner as though he didn't understand where we were.
".... We should probably go out for a little bit..."
"What, why?"
"Well, I need some new clothes, so I figured while I'm at it we should get you some too, but I need to make sure I get something that fits you." My eyes were looking over the not so white clothing he had been wearing. His shirt was too big, both it and his pants containing multiple tears and holes along with stains of grass, dirt, mud, and blood.
"Oh..." he replied simply.
"... So would you mind coming with me? I can carry you if you'd like," I smiled.
"Carry...?" Kira's innocent sapphire eye looked at me in confusion.
"Yeah," I responded as I put on my cloak and picked him up, "just like this."
"OK," he shyly grinned.
"Alright then, let's go get some new clothes then shall we?" With that I carried him down the stairs and outside. "Do you want to get your clothes first?" I asked as I started heading towards what appeared to be the market area.
"I-I don't c-care...." his voice shook as he pressed himself into me.
The poor child's terrified... "OK then, your clothes it is." I casually strolled the dull, grey tinted brick streets, looking over various buildings as we passed. Some were made of the same sort of brick as the streets, while others appeared to be made of wood. There were many stores, all of which had different products. While some may have had food or drinks others had clothing for various people along with some having things such as furniture and office supplies. It never ceased to amaze me how much people really seemed to think they needed to be happy in this world. "Ah, here we go!" After what had seemed like an eternity of searching I had finally stopped outside of a store with clothing for children. As I walked in carrying the small boy I said, "Let me know if you see anything you like, alright?"
It took a while, but eventually after looking over everything in the store several times he had finally decided on a large, long sleeved, high neck, grey and white striped shirt with a pair of dark blue jeans. "That look suits you," I commented as I hugged him. He even looks cute with his eye patch on...
"It does...?"
"Mhm," I grinned. "Now come on, we need to go findme some new clothes now."
Within an hour I had found new clothes similar to mine, and we were headed on our way back to the inn as the moon was starting to rise in the sky. Everything seemed peaceful, but then again, things can seem much different than they truly are.

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Kira
I had finally allowed Nerian to put me down, instead holding his hand to stay close to him out of fear someone would come out from the shadows surrounding us. There was a loud crash from a nearby alley that had caused me to jump, and my instant reaction was to cling to Nerian as though my life had depended on it. That was when the men came out of the alley near the bar we were passing. I was used to drunks, after all, I passed them frequently whenever I tried to escape being captured, but I wasn't used to these people. They were calling out insults to each other, mocking one another in a cruel joking manner.
As the joking increased I noticed Nerian try to stray farther from the group that was now forming, though I didn't understand why. All I knew was that he seemed eager to get back to the hotel for some reason. I jumped at the loud crack in the air, unsure what had caused the noise, instead only knowing it came from the group. I wasn't preparred for what I saw. The group of men was crowded around another man's body, all of them seeming to be in a fuss of worry and panic. My eyes followed their gaze, widening at the sight before me.
The man on the ground lay face down, a deep crimson liquid spilling from somewhere on his head to pool around him and slowly soak into is clothes. His eyes were closed and he didn't move. "Come on, Kira..." Nerian whispered, his hold on my hand tightening as he tried to urge me forward. I couldn't move. I was simply stuck there, staring at the sight I couldn't change before me, and then it slowly started to change before my eyes.
Rather than just one man on the ground it multiplied, instead becoming two first then three bodies. From there two of the bodies changed, one to a more fragile looking woman and the other to that of a small child just a bit smaller than myself. The females were in very simple dresses, both in blue with lace in the shape of flowers decorating the edges. The man wore nothing more than a normal pair of jeans and a black t-shirt. Then the scene seemed to morph again, only this time the beauty of the people was being stained with a deep flowing crimson, and an agonized scream escaped my mind. That was when the voice emerged again.
"What are you waiting for, kill them..." it hissed. "They were probably the ones who did, THEY were probably the ones to kill your family..." I felt my body shaking, choked back laughs that didn't sound quite right escaping my throat. "Kill them Kira...."
I started to laugh more, this time feeling someone's hands on my shoulders to lightly shake me as if that would help. "KILL..."
I felt something in my mind snap and the next thing I knew I had blacked out.

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Nerian Mirza
"Kira!" I yelled his name as he broke into hysterical laughter, unsure of what to do to help. "Snap out of it!" Suddenly he stopped laughing, his head snapping up to look at me with a crazed look in his eye, his head tilted slightly to the right.
"Was it you...?" he questioned, his voice holding an almost eery tone that I could tell wasn't right.
"Whata you mean?" What happened to him?
"It was you, wasn't it..."
"What're- Kira, snap out of it! It's me, Nerian!" Rather than listen to a word I said I was suddenly kicked into the hard brick building behind me. Ouch... I started to rub my head, barely jumping to dodge the knife the boy had in his hand, though where he had gotten it from was beyond me. "Kira, stop it!" He lunged again, almost as though he couldn't hear a word I was saying to him. "Kira, stop!"
"DIE!!!" he screamed as he tried to attack again, yelping as I grabbed his arm and turned, pinning him with my knee.
"Stop this Kira!" He struggled under my weight, my grip tightening on his hand which held the knife. "I said stop Kira!"
"No! I won't! You deserve to die!!!"
"You don't mean that!" I growled.
"Yes I do!!! You killed them!!!!"
Killed them...? "Kira, I-"
"LET GO!!!!!" he screamed as he struggled harder, his efforts at breaking free doing nothing but making him tired.
"Shhhhh...." I soothed as I gently stroked his hair. "It's alright.... It's all gonna be OK.... Just relax and go to sleep...."
"But.... You.... You killed-"
"I would never do anything to hurt you Kira." I responded in an almost angered tone. I could never hurt someone as hurt as you are right now.... A tear fell down his cheek, his body eventually going still as exhaution came over his body. "There there...." I whispered as I picked him up and hugged him close. The drunks who had caused Kira's strange outburst were long gone, the unconcious man's body laying in the street. Not bothering to pick the man up or even so much as glance at the sight that would make me sick I calmly walked to the inn, being extremely gentle as I carried Kira to the room and set him in bed. He looks so peaceful again... I sighed quietly as I pulled the covers over the small boy, sitting beside him and gently running a hand through his silky black hair as I had done moments ago.
That was when my own words had come to my mind once again. You're nothing more than a child... Somthing to be cared for and nurtured.... My eyes fell onto the sleeping boy, my mind easily being made up. He obviously had problems, issues he needed help to deal with, but no one had ever even offered to help. He's only a child.... "Those villagers...." I muttered, finally understanding why they saw this child as someone who was to be feared. Is he really a monster.....? No... He's just.... I felt my gaze creep back to the sleeping Kira. "... He's just misunderstood...." I whispered to the night. His name.... It shouldn't be Kira.... Suddenly it hit me. "Gokai... Yes..... That's much more fitting than killer...." After all, he wasn't a killer because he wanted to be, but no one stopped to listen. He is simply just a misunderstood child, someone who needs to be shown love and kindness to recover, and I'll give him just that.