The Tears of the Unicorns I: Temptation - Stephanie Rose - E-Book

The Tears of the Unicorns I: Temptation E-Book

Stephanie Rose

0,0
3,99 €

oder
Beschreibung

The angel Caylen is entrusted with guiding Eliya back to the path of light, but when his assignment is terminated, she takes her own life in despair. Caylen cannot bear to lose his charge, and desperately searches for a way to bring her back to life. That is when he stumbles upon the Holy Grail, which he learns will show its amazing powers in combination with unicorn blood. He steals the Grail and sets off to find a unicorn. Because of her gift for seeing the future, Miriel, Caylen’s sister, is sent to bring back the Grail. Sirion, a mage, will help her with her task. An adventurous and dangerous journey begins, and soon there is much more at stake than there first seemed to be …

Das E-Book können Sie in Legimi-Apps oder einer beliebigen App lesen, die das folgende Format unterstützen:

EPUB
Bewertungen
0,0
0
0
0
0
0



 

 

 

 

THE TEARS OF THE UNICORNS I TEMPTATION

 

 

 

Stephanie Rose

 

 

Copyright © 2019 – Searose Fantasy

 

Searose Fantasy

Raiffeisenstr. 4, 74360 Ilsfeld, Germany

www.searose-fantasy.de

 

First Edition: May 2019

 

Cover:      Searose | www.searose.de

Autor:      Stephanie Rose

 

 

 

 

 

All rights reserved. This book contains material protected under International and Federal Copyright Laws and Treaties. Any unauthorized reprint or use of this material is prohibited. No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without express written permission from the author/publisher, except where permitted by law, or in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For my hubby,

whom I love more than anything in this world.

Without you, this book would not have been possible.

 

In love,

Stephanie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In my dreams, I have visited this place many times.

This world, where the light is at home. Your world …

And I will visit it again until I’ve finally found you …

 

PROLOGUE

 

“I’ve ended up in this wonderful place again … That’s strange …”

Puzzled, Eliya looked around and breathed the fresh, pure air into her lungs.

The plain in front of her stretched as far as the eye could see, and in the distance merged with the grey-blue mountains. Under her naked feet she could feel the soft green grass, and with her every movement it stroked the soles of her feet.

Eliya sat down and lay back on the grass, her eyes closed. The gentle fragrance of flowers got into her nose and made her smile.

She stayed like that, motionless, for a few moments and enjoyed the pleasant, soothing feeling that flowed through her, and the warming sensation of the sun on her skin.

“Even though this is just a dream, everything seems so real,” she mumbled. “I wish I could stay here forever. This is where I feel at home, this is where I want to live …”

Her eyes wandered to the deep blue sky. There was not a single cloud to be seen. A gentle breeze blew around her and carried the calming rush of water to her ears. Where was the sound coming from? Eliya wanted to know; she wanted to go and see that place.

Again, she closed her eyes and imagined wandering through the wide, green plain in front of her and, in the distance, meeting the source of the rushing sound that was calling to her.

A smile snuck onto her lips and her heart began to beat faster as she thought that, there, she might be able to meet the person who had brought her to this place time and again.

Eventually, the wind freshened up and Eliya opened her eyes in bewilderment. Was the wind telling her something? She frowned and thought about it, but nothing came to mind.

Slowly, she closed her eyes again. Her mind wandered off once more and began to stroll through the world surrounding her. Her mind visited the great grey mountains in the distance, whose peaks seemed to be piled with snow, and the lone waterfall rumbling into the depths. The water became lost in a small, clear stream that vanished at the horizon.

Wherever Eliya looked there was life. The green grass under her feet and the colourful flowers rising from it bristled with vitality and put a gentle smile on her lips. This was the paradise she had imagined.

Suddenly, there were strange and blurry shades dancing back and forth on the river that made Eliya tremble. Her heart began to beat faster.

These shades, what were they?

Her gaze wandered into the distance as she heard vague, familiar voices, seeming to call to her. Eliya took one last glance back at the shades and then continued her journey, following the course of the stream into the distance. Perhaps there she would find the person who was calling to her, who had brought her to this place.

“Where are you?” she whispered, barely audibly, and opened her eyes. She was back on the green plain where she had started her journey through this world.

Eliya sat up and looked around.

“I can feel your presence, but still I can’t see you … Who are you?” Eliya murmured.

During her previous visits to this world she had felt a presence nearby, but this time it felt much closer. It almost seemed as if she could touch it.

“I’m begging you, show yourself to me …” she pleaded, saddened, but her wish remained unfulfilled. Or was this feeling simply a product of her imagination, of her hope to escape her loneliness?

A quiet sigh passed from her throat when she thought that soon the time would come for her to wake up again and return to that gloomy everyday life, and all the pain and sorrow it held for her.

“I do not want to leave here …” she said unhappily, fully aware that she would have no choice but to give in.

Every time she visited this magical place in her dreams, she felt strangely light-hearted and entirely free. It was a feeling she was missing in the real world – her world – where grief and despair grew in her heart.

Suddenly she could feel a great power rising inside her, and it started to call out to her again. A destructive power …

 

 

CHAPTER 1

 

It was dark and raining when Eliya came home. The streets were deserted and only the yellow light of the street lamps brought some warmer colour to the greyish dark that surrounded her.

Her long, light brown hair hung in strands across her face and blocked her view, but that didn’t bother her. On the contrary, it was good like that because now she could hide the bruises that marred her face.

She pulled the latchkey out of her pocket and carefully opened the door, but instead of entering and escaping the cold, she turned around one last time.

Her heart began to beat faster and she held her breath as she noticed a dark figure on the other side of the street, behind a tree. Instead of fear, she suddenly felt a deep warmth rising inside her, exiling even the cold in her limbs. She trembled and shook her head.

When she once again dared to glance in the direction of the figure, it had vanished. Had she just imagined it? She frowned and looked back and forth along the street. Nothing.

Eliya walked into the house and closed the door as quietly as possible. She could hear her parents talking in the living room. She didn’t want to make a single sound that would reveal her presence, although her parents no longer cared when or even if she came home. Sometimes she even believed they would prefer her never to come back.

Every time she thought this, the knowledge forced new tears into her eyes.

And yet, every day – just like today – she whispered a vague “Hello!”when she entered the house, hoping she was wrong. And every day – like today – she didn’t receive an answer. However, she was sure she had been heard, because for a short moment there was silence in the living room. Not two seconds later, the conversation continued at a much louder volume, drowning out all other sounds outside the room.

The inexpressible feeling of loneliness that subdued her heart was becoming stronger each day, and nothing in this world seemed to be able to take that loneliness away from her.

I should have known this was a trap … she thought wearily and climbed the stairs to her room.

Eliya stood in front of her mirror and moved the wet hair from her face. A long cut ran over the left side of her face, down to her chin. Even though it wasn’t bleeding anymore, she could still feel the throbbing of her heart in the wound.

She ran her left hand over it and winced as a stabbing pain passed through it at her touch. “You fool,” she muttered quietly and smiled briefly, but it looked more like a grimace. Then the tears came.

“Why am I crying?” she asked her mirror image and blinked in surprise, but she didn’t receive an answer. So she continued to stare at that girl in the mirror who didn’t seem to want to stop the tears. She just let them flow.

Eliya shook her head.

“What are you doing? Tears make no difference, you know that! Stop it!” she ordered her mirror image, but instead of obeying, it cried even more.

Something shiny caught her eye and she turned her view away from the girl in the mirror to see what it was.

On the small table beside her lay a razor. Eliya tried to think how it had got into her room.

Then she remembered.

It had lain in this very spot for almost a week now. She had swiped it from her parents’ bathroom, hoping her father wouldn’t miss it. After all, he wanted to nurture a beard, so he had no need for it anymore.

She was right, her father hadn’t noticed, but to make matters worse, her mother had. But to Eliya’s surprise, her father had said he had thrown it away, and her mother had let things be.

It doesn’t matter, she thought unhappily and grabbed the razor. Then a weird thought ran through her mind.

“It would be over in an instant …” she whispered, and her heart began to beat faster as she thought about how it must feel to die. “But I’m afraid … so afraid …”

A quiet sigh escaped her lips as she slowly and carefully stroked the sharp edge of the razor.

“What will come after that? Will everything end or does the pain start again? I’d really like to know …”

She put the razor to her wrist but twitched back. “I can’t …” she mumbled and started to cry again.

She dropped the razor and flinched when it brushed her arm and fell to the floor with a loud kliiing. Frightened, she held her breath and didn’t dare to move, but everything stayed silent outside her room. No quick movements, no worried sighs, nothing.

“What was I thinking?” she whispered with a bitter laugh. “That Mum would run in here and be worried?”

Eliya shook her head and sighed. What am I thinking? She couldn’t have heard a thing … But even if she did … would she care?

Deeply saddened, she kneeled down beside the razor and gazed at its shiny blade.

There was something red at the top of the blade.

Curiously, she picked it up and examined it closely. It was only now that she saw the small red drops next to the razor on the floor. Where did they come from?

This is … blood … she thought, surprised, and her gaze slid to her arm.

A thin red line had drawn itself over her forearm. Blood poured out.

Her breath caught. “But how?” she asked in bewilderment. “I didn’t feel a thing … nothing … no pain. That’s odd …”

Carefully she stroked the wound and looked at it closely. The blood that came from the wound was still warm and had a slight metallic smell. So this is how my blood smells. I’ve never realized it till now, even though it’s happened so many times before … so many wounds, so much pain … and I’ve never noticed it?

Eliya squinted her eyes and eventually shrugged her shoulders. Again, she gazed at the razor in her hand and frowned. Then she wiped the blood from the floor and patted the cut on her arm with a clean cloth. When the bleeding stopped, she turned to the razor again and cleaned the blade.

She decided to keep it, and hid it in a safe place. It might come in handy in future, she decided. Then she got rid of her clothes which, she only realized now, were completely wet. But she wasn’t freezing at all, though her skin felt icy.

Eliya had never been so pleased to have a shower in her room.

She got into the shower and twisted the tap as far as it would go. As the cold water became warm and eventually hot, a feeling of deep calm and peace flowed through her, a feeling that had become strange to her as time had passed.

Eliya showered for a long time and tried to forget the strain of the day, and for a moment she succeeded. But as soon as she looked at herself in the mirror again, the wound that grazed her face made her remember again what had been done to her. And she would have to remember it for the rest of her life, for a scar would remain. She was sure of it.

Absorbed in her thoughts, she left the shower, dried herself and put on her pajamas.

Before she crawled into her warm bed, she took a last glance outside.

There it was again, the figure behind the tree – its gaze seemed to meet Eliya’s. She winced and recoiled.

That she was still being followed scared her. Her heart began to race and she gulped strongly. She drew the curtain and lay down on her bed. Tears ran down her cheeks and she sobbed quietly.

Was she not allowed to live in peace?

 

There was a light. A bright, warm light.

Eliya opened her eyes and glanced at the beautiful face of a man. He smiled at her and whispered something she couldn’t hear.

The man seemed to glow from the inside and the light around him radiated warmly and brightly, even to the darkest corners of her heart. Everything was ablaze and flowing with light.

Eliya sat up and examined the man in detail.

He had wings. Snow-white wings which were illuminated like the man himself. His long, golden hair slid through the wind. Eliya didn’t know where the wind was coming from. Her window was closed.

“Are you … an angel?” Eliya asked and enjoyed the warm, comforting feeling his presence created in her.

Again the man whispered something, and again she couldn’t hear his words.

“I … I cannot hear you …” she mumbled and looked down. Tears burned in her eyes, but she didn’t want him to see them.

The man sat down next to her on the bed and put his hand on her shoulder.

An unbelievable warmth and peace seeped through her from where he had touched her. The tears vanished and a moment later she no longer knew why she was crying.

And suddenly she could hear him. It was not with words that he spoke, but with his heart.

After she had calmed down and the disturbance of her heart had eased, she started to understand his words. There was nothing to fear, his heart said, and she somehow believed him. The light was nothing to be afraid of, she knew that.

“Are you an angel?” she asked again.

But instead of answering, the man smiled and stroked her face.

A moment later, Eliya felt a change inside of her. The warmth that came with his touch made her shiver and simultaneously gave her the feeling she had missed all these years: security.

She wanted to hold onto that moment and she prayed that time would stop. But before she could react, the angel had vanished, and an amazing weariness came over her …

 

The next morning, everything was as before.

Eliya got up at the crack of dawn and prepared herself for school. She always did her homework in the morning, so she had no other choice but to rise with the sun.

After she had finished her homework, she stared suspiciously out of the window. Something told her she was being watched.

She gazed at the tree where she had seen the dark figure the day before, and was relieved when there was no one to be seen. But the feeling of being watched didn’t go away and she frowned pensively. Was her mind playing a trick on her?

A little nervous, she went to the bathroom to wash herself. When her gaze met the mirror she flinched and a choking sound escaped from her throat.

The wound that had been inflicted on her the evening before had vanished, and nothing indicated that she had ever been injured.

She held her breath. “What? How? Did I just imagine all that? But the pain felt so real … it did hurt.”

Slowly she stroked her cheek. Her heart pounded faster, and when she imagined that she might be losing her mind, the fear made her tremble.

“What is happening to me?”

She teared up and didn’t know what to do. Was it because of her broken family and her loveless life that her mind was now starting to play tricks on her?

It took a while for Eliya to be able to think straight again and calm herself down.

And then she remembered her dream.

“Was this angel real? Did he heal me?”

She tried to remember his face, but all that crossed her mind was the warm light that had surrounded him and the feeling of security. It had been a long time since Eliya had last felt that sensation, and she had almost forgotten how it felt. That angel really had given her the feeling of being loved, and a gentle blush graced her cheek.

Eliya thought about it again and again while brushing her teeth. Finally, she concluded that her dream had to be real, even though she still couldn’t believe it. She could not believe that there were such beings as angels, let alone a god. But her heart began to beat faster as she thought about it. Had she been wrong all along?

She sighed and stared at her mirror image as she dried her face.

I want to see you again … she thought, and a dreamy smile came over her lips.

She turned and looked at the small round clock on her wall that quietly ticked, counting the seconds. Gradually she realized it was time to leave.

When she went back to her room and dressed herself, she looked outside. Again, there was no one there and she was relieved.

She packed her school stuff and left the room. In the kitchen, she quickly made an open sandwich to eat on her way to school.

When she left the house, her parents seemed to be still asleep. Like every morning, she looked back at the house with a sad gaze. She wished for nothing more than for her mother to be standing there to see her off.

On her way to school she ran into her classmates, who met every morning at the supermarket to walk to school together. Eliya wanted desperately to belong, but that was refused to her. Once she had tried to approach the small group, but she had only got a degrading snort and the words, “Go away, we don’t want you here!”which had held her back from approaching them again.

They were right: she was different from her classmates – different from everyone she knew – and she was aware of that, but she couldn’t say what it was that made her different. She only knew that it was there and it made her repulsive towards others.

When the small group noticed her, they turned away and began to whisper.

Eliya was used to this, but every time it hurt anew, and she sighed, disappointed. And again she asked herself what it was that made her different. What was it that made them ignore and humiliate her? But she was lacking the courage to ask them.

When she passed the group, she looked back one last time and then continued her walk alone.

Thinking about it, she realized she didn’t need anyone. She had been alone her whole life and she was still alive, so why should she need anyone now? But something had changed inside of her; she could feel it.

So what? I can live my life alone. I don’t need anyone! she thought and squinted her eyes. But deep in her subconscious she knew she could not. Her cry for love and security had met deaf ears all these years, and Eliya had banished that wish to a far-off corner of her soul. But it was still there, and after the miraculous event of last night it had surfaced once again.

Eliya stopped and gazed at the sky. Lost in her thoughts, she watched a few clouds passing overhead and sighed. The sun was already high in the sky and she knew she had to hurry.

“But why?” she murmured, saddened. “It makes no difference if I go to school or not …”

An annoyed-sounding female voice snapped Eliya from her thoughts.

“May I pass?”

Puzzled, Eliya looked around. The woman held a child on her arm, who smiled happily at her. When Eliya tried to return the smile, the woman turned the head of her child away so it was no longer able to see her.

“Well? May I pass now?”

Only now did Eliya realize that she was standing in the middle of the pavement, with a parked car to her right which blocked the rest of the way.

“Oh, yes. I’m sorry.” Eliya smiled, embarrassed, and walked back a few steps to let the woman pass. “Please.”

“I am really sorry,” Eliya whispered again as the woman moved past her.

“You should look out for the people around you and not get in their way,” the woman said with a harsh voice and walked off without another word. The woman didn’t give her another look and no word of thanks came from her lips.

Eliya let her sad gaze follow her.

The child caught another glimpse of Eliya and again smiled joyfully. Thank you … she thought with tears in her eyes. Why was that child smiling at her when everyone else treated her with contempt?

In the distance, the school bell rang and snatched her from her dark thoughts. She held her breath, appalled. Her eyes widened. For a moment it seemed as if time had stopped, until she finally realized what the school bell wanted to tell her.

“Damn, I’ll be late again!” she cried, and ran, but she knew she wouldn’t make it in time.

When she finally reached the school building, the first class had already started.

Damn, she thought, saddened. My teacher will kill me if I go in now. And the others will pick on me again …

Eliya stood in front of the classroom door for a few minutes and listened to the teacher. She wasn’t sure if she should knock on the door or simply wait until the lesson was over.

“It might be best if I just go. It doesn’t matter anyway …”

Just as she was turning to leave, the door opened and Eliya gasped for breath, horrified. Her heart was beating in her throat.

“You’re late again?”

Unable to move, Eliya just stood there, and it seemed like ages until she finally turned towards the person who had spoken to her. It was her teacher, Mr. Kira.

“Ehm … yeah … I-I’m sorry …” she stuttered and looked down.

“Well, it’s okay. Now get in before I change my mind.” He blinked at her and stood back to let her pass. “Th-thank y-you, Mr. Kira.”

With a bright red face, Eliya flitted past him into the classroom and hastily sat down on her chair. From her classmates she reaped only cold gazes as they turned towards her to show she still wasn’t welcome.

“Couldn’t you have got here sooner?” the girl next to her whispered so quietly no one but she could hear. “Now I can’t copy the homework! Why else do you think I sit next to you? I hate your guts!”

Eliya sadly lowered her head and then gazed out the window. It was always the same. She knew Nelli was only sitting next to her because of that, but Eliya was still happy when she was able to help her classmates, even though no one thanked her.

A quiet sigh leaked from Eliya’s lips. The more she wished to belong, the more everything seemed to turn the other way. Sometimes she even believed someone had put a curse on her, making it impossible for her to be loved by other people. Or had she done something in a previous life that meant she had to bear this behaviour as punishment?

If I only knew why, it would make things easier to endure … But maybe this is also part of the punishment? There has to be a reason for all this …

Would God punish people in their next life for previous misdeeds? The more Eliya thought about it, the more she concluded that God wouldn’t do something like that. After all, in their religious education they’d been taught that God would judge them with infinite mercy. But what did her teachers know about that? If she was honest with herself, no one could know what kind of being God was, and if He even existed, she thought.

That’s right, God would never approve of or tolerate all the injustices and wars, Eliya thought and nodded in acknowledgement. Therefore, there is no God. There is nothing but us, destroying each other and clinging to a belief to justify our actions. And when we die, we simply vanish. We cease to exist.

“Yeah, as if we never existed …” she murmured.

“After coming in late you should at least pay attention to the class!” Mr. Kira yelled and made her flinch. “Keep your thoughts for the break.”

Eliya nodded guiltily and kept her head down.

The lesson was so boring she was almost unable to follow her teacher’s words, let alone keep them in mind. Right now, there were so many things keeping her mind busy, so many things she needed to think about.

 

When the school bell rang to end class, Eliya slowly packed up her books. Suddenly, a figure loomed up in front of her. She laid her schoolbooks neatly down on the table and looked up.

“What are you, a monster?” the girl in front of her said angrily.

Behind her, the girl’s whole clique had stood up to have a good look. Eliya heard quiet laughter and didn’t attempt to answer. She knew what the girl was referring to because it had been she who had injured Eliya the day before.

“I’m talking to you!” the girl yelled and angrily hit her palm on the table.

“I have nothing to tell you, Liana,” Eliya said calmly and packed her books in her bag.

“Who do you think you are?” she screamed in irritation. “What did you do to your face? I know I disfigured you!” There was a hint of fear in Liana’s voice.

Eliya smiled and suddenly burst out laughing, making Liana jump back in fear. “I’m a witch, and if you’re not careful I will turn you into a frog!” she shouted with sparkling eyes.

With a triumphant smile, Eliya took her bag and walked past the girls, who hurried to get out of her way. But as soon as she left the classroom, she knew she had made a grave mistake which she would have to atone for very soon. A quiet sigh came over her lips as she thought about the bitchiness she would have to suffer in return.

For a moment she stopped on the threshold of the school and gazed at the sky, then she walked home.

Spring was coming, Eliya noticed; all the blossoms on the trees were beginning to burst out of their buds. A smile flitted over her lips and she decided to take a detour which would lead her to the nearby forest.

Ever since Eliya could remember, she had felt attracted to nature. She often had the feeling that something or someone she couldn’t see was calling to her, and every time she obeyed that call, she ended up at the forest outside her town, and then it stopped. Sometimes she would ask herself if her mind was just playing tricks on her to cast the loneliness out of her heart.

She had no one. No one at her side she could trust, no one she could talk to or who would bestow comforting words upon her.

She was all alone.

A quiet sigh came over her lips. “Why do I keep thinking about that?” she mumbled quietly and knit her brows. “I should be happy to be able to enjoy these moments of peace.”

She nodded to back up her own words, and continued on her way through the blooming and sweet-smelling forest.

The vague noise of leaves blowing in the wind and the bright sunlight shining through the trees gave Eliya the feeling of descending into another world. The view that was offered to her here was quite magical, she thought, and the more her thoughts became lost in this beautiful scenery, the more relieved she felt. She inhaled the sweet smell of spring deep into her lungs and slowly exhaled again.

Eliya gazed at the sky and a satisfied smile came over her lips. Slowly she turned around in circles and enjoyed the incredible feeling of relief that flowed through her.

I am home, she thought dreamily and closed her eyes.

No other place she knew gave her the feeling of being welcome like this forest did, and she wished to dwell here for all eternity. Far away from civilization, far away from all sorrow.

But when it finally started to get dark, and she began to feel hungry, Eliya decided with a heavy heart to go home. After all, she had no other choice. Where else could she go?

She gulped and looked down as she walked.

The more she thought about her future, the less she knew how she could survive in this hostile world on her own. She thought about it intensely, but then she shook her head and smiled, tormented. Right now she didn’t want to think about it anymore.

The sun slowly vanished beyond the far horizon and sent a last ray of light towards her. In front of her was the small white house where she lived with her parents, with the colourful sea of flowers in the front garden. The house was waiting for her to come inside. Even though her parents never welcomed her home or said goodbye when she left for school in the morning, the small house did, Eliya felt.

Like every day, she opened the front door, took a final look back down the street and then closed the door as quietly as possible.

She listened attentively and frowned. To her surprise, no one seemed to be at home.

Curiously, Eliya walked towards the living room and left her schoolbag on the first step of the stairs.

---ENDE DER LESEPROBE---