I heard a massive explosion from the distance, we both turned at the exact same time towards the direction of the sound. What we saw rivaled the sun in terms of brightness that made us cover our eyes at the sight, the blinding light lasted a few moments.
Shortly after, in the far distance we saw a floating radiant object. Certainly, I could not describe it's luminance except that it dazzled those that laid eyes upon it. Especially mine, but not for obvious reasons. When it lit up the murky, gloom ridden recesses of the Black Market, somehow it felt like I was on the surface. Almost as if I'm nonchalantly paving the streets of my childhood on a fine Sunday afternoon. It's radiance felt warm as if my skin were touched by the first light of dawn.
"What is that?" I said in awe.
"Damn!" Yela exclaimed.
I immediately turned to the sight of our missing adversary.
"What happened? Where'd she go?"
"She was there a moment ago..."
I searched around our area, Abellinda was nowhere to be found. Escape was the first thing that came to mind.
"We need to go! she might come back anytime soon."
"I don't think she will Madame..."
"I can't use any spells, I've been trying to cast or charge up any Corr I have left but it doesn't work! If I can't then... she can't too."
She didn't make any sense as I can't make use of my magic right now because of Corr-exhaustion. I simply concluded that starlight in the sky was the cause of this. For reasons unbeknownst to me, I've noticed since it presented itself that my gift has been dulled. My gift of another worldly sight felt lacking, as if there was something disturbing my ability.
"Must be an unknown phenomenon because of that explosion..." I said hypothetically.
"Wait! Madame! That explosion! Isn't that where Bardel and Hackmann are?"
We stared at each other and started making our way towards the explosion, she aided in carrying the child as we went our way. Through the deserted streets and alleyways of the Black Market we dashed.
The stiffness of my fatigued body lingered, Yela of course could observe this from the way I limped and breathed heavily. I felt my hand twinge in pain as my hand trembled from the shock, Immediately I lost my grip. Alert as Yela should be, she caught the child midway.
"Are you alright?" She worried.
"I could take you to the closest squadron and--"
"No! leave me, here with the child, I'll make my way there... Eventually."
"How can I? You're in a horrible situation."
I paused as the pain became unbearable. My hands trembled, like they had minds of their own, the side effects of abusing my limit were showing. My veins palpitated as they grew visible and had a purple-ish hue. The Corr within my hands became too unstable and disorganized as I saw them, I needed time to recover and only then I'll be able to help. To my surprise she took my hands, the unpleasant look on her face as she gazed at the state of my hands.
"We need to hurry! Your hands!"
"I said no! They need your help! Leave me and the child, I'll handle myself."
At last, her final struggle to convince me otherwise slowly turned to acceptance. She stared at my eyes looking for some sort of assurance.
"I went through the trouble of saving you! So don't you die Madame!"
"I plan to!" I said with determination.
She beamed with relief then nodded in agreement, she bolted away after slowly laying the boy on the ground. Half way through the streets she stopped and turned around.
"A few streets from here to the left is the nearest squadron! They handled that area of the city!" She hurriedly exclaimed.
I couldn't inch a reply as my body ached. She knew of this as her figure hastily faded from the dimly lit streets. Finally I checked the source of my suffering, it was the wound on my chest. It was a nasty mark left by that unholy fiend. The wound was infected, the area surrounding had a distinct charred like appearance.
There was only one poison that could have done this. Kyzanthapime, this deadly floral plant is known for it's distinct effect of turning affected areas to a char-like appearance. As deadly as it was, it also had another effect, it could disrupt the Corr-flow within the person rendering them unable to use magic. Keeping in mind that the effects of the poison could worsen if I moved, but remaining still would do me no good. The only chance I had was seeking out medical attention from the nearest squadron.
The Last of my remaining strength I poured out from my severely aching body. Each step was a burden, my balance grew unstable, the arms that served as a cradle for the child now grew weary. I couldn't discern the appropriate direction as my senses turned useless.
My futile efforts of tracing the nearest Corr from a living being was discouraging. My gifted eyes were no more than eyes of the blind, as everything in sight was covered by light. Treading onward to the nearest squadron, I could only hope.
The familiar musty alleyways my legs plowed through reminded my mind of past dread. It was through this very cursed city that I had lost my sight. The memory of his image reminded me his horrible misdeeds. He was the epitome of inhumane acts, morality deprived experiments, the physical representation of Insanity. His victims loathed him to their very core. It was the sacrifices of many that allowed another future for my life, I could never forget their faces. Each of them flashed before my mind, was this a taste of death? the sign of slowly succumbing to my corroded state?
"Let go of me!"
A coarse but timidly toned voice brought me back to my senses, the struggling child resting at my arms broke free. I hurriedly reached towards his shadowy facial features, it reminded me of a familiar face that belonged to another. One who delved deep into my mind, one that left a deep scar that instigated my burning passion to save lives. With a sudden rush of tears I thought he was once the person I knew; I held him tight.
"I'm sorry..." I sobbed.
I felt comfort and a sort of bliss while wrapping my arms around him. He just stood there as I knelt to his height, as if he had accepted the feelings I forwarded. Soon my shoulder grew damp as I held him tight, feelings of regret started to resurface as my life grew destitute of time. The numbness overcame my body as the consciousness I had struggled to retained slowly faded away. There was still a lot left for me to do, this wasn't my time. I refused to accept my fate.
"N-not, today... I-I won't, lose, they're, counting... O-on m-me..."
The loss of strength as weakness overcame me, allowed myself to slowly lay on the ground. The coldness was somewhat comforting, the life I had was full of regret. I yearned to repay those that had given, those that had stayed and the ones that lost.
"This world is unforgiving" I thought.
The life I had was slowly passing. As the soul I had saved left, maybe he already lost himself, was he not thankful? I didn't bother to ask, my selfish thoughts of saving another always out-did me.
Maybe the rightful thing to do was let others decide...
At this darkest moment of mine, my sight has already blurred. The dim lamp post above that radiated gloom gave false feelings of warmth. Indiscernible voices I could hear from the far off distance slowly neared me. Shortly after, In that brief glimpse I saw a reaching hand followed by a voice as my mind darkened into the void.
"Not today Madame..."