A gust of wind slammed at his face once he step out of the building where he works. Its already dark, and the air is a bit chilly. Manuel Cornova shivers, as he bring his old black fleece jacket near to his slim body. The winter is almost near, and his jacket is not enough to make him warm.
The wage that he gets as one of the janitor in Richmond Empire building, is only enough for his food, bills and the rent of his apartment. No wonder he's still unmarried at the age of forty. Because, there's no sane woman will marry him with the kind of lifestyle that he has.
But even though he's poor, he always wanted to have a family of his own. To have a wife that will love him unconditionally. And have his own kids, that will call him — dad.
He let out a deep sigh, and burrow his chin at the collar of his jacket before he walk briskly at the now empty street. His steps are a bit light, but still strong despite how weak he looked.
Humming to himself, he empty his head with all the negative thoughts. No need to burden himself with something he can not control. Because no matter what, he can't change anything, however he wanted to. That's how unfair life will always be, to someone like him.
He then turn into the next corner, and walk more faster... His steps are more hurried, and noisier. His heart starts pounding, while a sweat starts to form on his temple despite the cold weather. Fear begin to bloom in his chest, as he brace himself at the impending doom that might appear.
He never like this place, and if he only have another way home, he already took it. But unfortunately for him, there's no other open path towards his apartment but this creepy streets. Actually, its alright to passed here at mornings, but it's another thing at night. He do not know why, but this road give him the chills whenever he passes through it, every evenings after work.
The forest at the side of the road didn't help either, because for some unknown reason it always gave him an eerie feeling. The looming shadows from the trees, create a mysterious feels to it. As if there is someone looking at him through the shadows. Ready to strike, and worse, kill him!
He hugged himself, keeping his eyes in front. Just a little more, and he will arrive at the end of the street where the residential areas are. Just a little bit mo—
Manuel jump into his feet, squeaking from so much fright when someone suddenly emerge from the bushes and fall, with a heavy and loud thump, at the sandy ground near his feet. The hair behind his neck stood up, while his eyes grew big when the rays of the full moon which had been hiding from the clouds just a while ago, zeroed at the person who just fell..
Its a woman. A young woman, maybe in her early twenties. Full of deep gashes, bruised, and bathing in her own blood. Her clothes were torn, her long silky blonde hair is in disarray, grime, dirt and mud covers her from head to toe, but for him she still looks stunning.
It takes a couple of minute before his head starts functioning, and with worried expression he kneel in front of her, "Hey...Are you okay?"
Or perhaps his mind is still in chaos. Because by the looks of it, she can not possibly be okay. "Just forget it."He grumbled, shaking his head. "Don't worry, I'm going to call for an ambulance. Everything will going to be just fine."
He took his phone from his back pocket, flipped it open and ready to fumble at the keypad when a small and fragile hand stop him.
"No, don't call anyone..." a weak voice, pleads.
Manuel frowned, and look at the woman who is groaning painfully, as she drags her weak wobbling body to stand on her feet. He moved swiftly. Then as quick as he can, he helped her to stand. Looking at her, he can see how badly her wounds are.
What happened to her? Who could possibly hurt a fragile woman like her?
Then suddenly, his eyes locked at the bundle on her arms. He can't see what it is, but he concluded that it's probably important to her, seeing the way she clutches on it tightly. Afraid to let go.
But the question is, what the heck it is?
He even thought that she possibly got hurt because of it. He wanted to ask, but he knows that he doesn't have a right to. So like always, he keep quiet.
"Why? As I see it, you are in dire need of help.." he said, instead.
The woman shakes her head. And then she starts breathing heavily. He understands that she might have her reasons but Manuel is afraid that she won't last long if she didn't get any medical attention. She's in too much pain, and the way she sweats, as she panted while groaning from so much pain does not look too good. So he open his mouth again, to reason with her. But anything he wanted to say were cut off when she spoke first, quite hurriedly.
"I know that you're worried about me, but believed me its not the time for that. I'm afraid that our pursuers are getting nearer. So please, help me." The desperation in her voice, and face tug his heart. He can relate with her. There are times in his life that become too hard for him. A time, when he desperately wishes that there were someone out there who is willing to help him.... But he's always unfortunate. And now, there she is, looking exactly the same as him, pleading, asking for help. And Manuel knows, that he can't say no.
"What do you want me to do?"
She blink her eyes, seems surprised that he didn't even hesitate to help her. Then after a while, a sad smile make way on her busted lips, as she thrust the bundle she's carrying on his slim arms. He's flabbergasted. Shocked within his wits. And before he knew what's truly happening, she's there hurriedly slinging a small black bag on his neck, which is quite heavy, despite how small it looked.
"Please bring this child into safety. Much farther than this place, if you may." She whispers in a soft voice, while suspiciously looking around. "That bag is full of money, used it for whatever you needed. Just please, take care of my son..."
Manuel's eyes almost bulge in his socket when she heard those words from her. "What?! Eh! Bu—"
He wanted to help her, but he never expected something like this.
"Please there's no time... Go!"
He's still reluctant, but a chilling sensation run down his spine as he heard collective howls not far from them. Its eerie, and for some unknown reason, he became more afraid than he already is.
"Just go. Please, I'm begging you!"
He glance at the woman, and what she saw in her eyes give his feet a push, making it to move on its own accord. And before he knew it, he's already running as if his life dependent on it, leaving her there, completely alone. His eyes prickle, and he felt the tears fall down his cheeks as he run more faster as he could.
He did not look behind him. No, its most like he can't. An unknown force seems controlling his body. And he can also hear a voice, urging him to go on. To continue. To run.
He became afraid. He didn't understand what's truly going on. But his fear overpower his senses. And now he do not have a choice but to do what he only knows best, and that's, to run away..
It didn't take an hour before he's running towards the nearest bus stop. He did not even stop to his apartment to change or pack his clothes. He knows that it won't be best to linger at the town any longer than he needed, so with hazy mind and adrenaline clouding his senses, he take the safest route.
Once his butt touches the leather sit of the night bus, weariness washes over himself. He blinked his tired eyes, and look around disbelievingly.
"Fuck! What just happened?!" He cursed out loud.
But he grew rigid when the bundle in his hands starts to move. With reluctant hands, he brought his hand near it and slowly move the cover.
Manuel can't help but gasp when he saw the child.
What an angel...
The child has honey blonde hair, pale purple eyes, and cute cherub cheeks. "What a beautiful child.." Someone gush besides him. "Is it a boy or a girl?"
Manuel snap his head at his left, and smile at the old woman besides him. He didn't even notice her when he came in. But then he remember something...
'Just please, take care of my son..'
He turn his eyes at the baby, who is now looking at him curiously. He smile softly, earning a soft giggle from him. "He's a boy.."
"That's wonderful. What is his name?"
He do not move his head, to looked at the woman, who probably still looking at the child in his arms. He can't stray his eyes away from the angel laying in his arms. Watching him smile at him, like he's someone precious, warmed his heart.
He become lost. And the world around him vanished. But then, he heard a voice. And then he remembered the woman asked him a question.
He shakes his head, no idea on what to say. He can not answer, because he don't have any idea what the baby's name is. So, what now??
Then something strange happened. He does not know if he's dreaming or it's really happening. But then, he might becoming crazy. Because he swears he just heard the baby's mother voice talking inside his head. Which is obviously impossible, but why its happening to him?
His hands move without him noticing, and grasped the child's small hands. The soft voice of the woman is still there, talking to him, saying words he do not understand, and before he can't stop himself, her words suddenly flow out from his mouth. The sound of his voice became different, much different than his own... As if the woman is the one speaking, using his mouth as her own. Voicing her thoughts into words. Proclaiming what she really wanted to say out loud...
"Nanna. His name is Nanna... The last living heir of our clan. The embodiment of our magic and witchcraft. My lovely Moon Child."