When I was a child, I was told that we live in a mortal world. A world everyone shall leave eventually… Death is a natural part of life, after all. It comes to free us from a burden of oldness and illness. My parents said, it never comes early or late. It comes right on time.
My siblings and I enjoyed stories of life and death. It really made the world seem a better place than it really was with its injustice and inequality. We smiled and imagined our future: full of adventures, dangers, friends and love. We hoped to become heroes. We hoped to change some things. We hoped to live happily ever after. But that was not the case...
When I was 14, a scorpion man killed my family… I was away from home, visiting a fair with my friend, having fun and eating sweets, and when I came back, I saw nothing but blood and torn bodies. All of them – my parents, my three siblings and aunt – were dead.
I burst into tears. I didn't know what to do. I only hoped it was a horrible nightmare and I was about to wake up. But that never happened. We cannot turn time back, we cannot undo what is done. And in one moment I was left alone in this huge and cruel world.
Villagers said many things about that. That my family brought this upon them by angering gods. That this was just a misfortune. That I should either be married or sent to a cloister. But I didn’t care. I knew that my parents were nicest people in this world and if the gods had something against them, they just went nuts! I knew it was not a misfortune – it was a tragedy! And most of all, I knew I will never get married! The only thought about that made me furious!
That day I realized something important. We live here and now. And here our families, friends, loved ones die, here we have to make difficult choices, sacrifices, here we kill or get killed. In just a one day, someone’s life can turn into hell and there will be no way out. In one day, someone may face the frailness of life and horror of death. And I didn’t want to see that again! I had to find a way to become a predator, not a prey.
Eventually, I was sent to a monastery far from our village, for everyone feared that scorpion man might come back looking for me and will "hurt innocent people". Like my family wasn't innocent helping poor and looking after 2 foster kids in addition to their own children! I was sure that our neighbors heard my family's screams, but never tried to help... Cowards! I hated them! I hated them all! Nuns taught everyone about forgiveness, but I had no intention to forgive! So nuns saw much more than just a little frightened girl. They saw my anger and wish to fight and they saw someone who may be able to protect the weak. They gave me a book they found here long ago.
It was from this book, that I’ve learnt how to protect myself and how to kill. Every possible weapon was described there, every possible monster and their weaknesses were mentioned. Nothing was overlooked. The author knew more about monsters, then those monsters knew about themselves. I’ve learnt fighting styles, magic, stratagems. I’ve learnt to be ruthless and cold-blooded. I don’t know who wrote this book, but it was someone who knew how to hunt.
Thanks to that unknown hunter, I was able to find and join the Hunters’ Brotherhood – alliance of people who wanted to fight monsters and other evil creatures back. We stalk, we wait in shadows, we are ready to kill. We know our enemy and we know ourselves. We trust each other. I am the one of Archons of the Brotherhood. I am the Lead Hunter.
My name is Omen. And my life is one long hunt!
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