During his stay in the Time Abyss, the boy never slept. And so the dream never visited him. It became a distant memory, something he could hardly recalled even if he tried his best to remember it again while falling through the Time Abyss.
But now the boy is back on solid ground, and the dream has found its way back to him. Like a long lost shadow that finally succeeded in chasing down its owner who managed to outran it.
In the dream, the boy is being stabbed, like the usual. Constantly, repeatedly, always in the same place. And the boy could take it, he is accustomed to it. But what he could never get used to, what he could never endure, is hearing the sound of his loved ones screaming for help as they are hacked to death, begging for him to come save them.
But the boy never could rescue them. He had tried to defeat the ones who were stabbing him. He can fell hundreds and hundreds of them. But it would all be for naught, they would still die and he would end up cradling their lifeless bodies. He had tried taking their place, shielding their bodies with his own. He could survive a thousand slashes and bear a thousand more stabbings. But in the end their corpses would stare at him with accusing eyes, blaming him for their death.
The boy’s only solace is that he knows it’s just a dream. That it would be over once he wakes up. But the thing that would bring him constant despair and anguish is that he knows the dream would visit him once he closes his eyes and falls asleep.
So the boy waits, he waits for the dream to be over and for this hell to end. But even though he knows they’re not real, even though the boy knows they are long dead, the boy would always try to save his family. He knows that he would fail, and that failure would stab him in the heart like a knife and cause him more pain and suffering than a thousand weapons could.
And the boy knows he deserves it, because he was the man who lets his family die while he can do nothing.
But there something different about this dream, the boy can feel it. Just as he was about to watch his family die for what could be the hundredth time, suddenly there is an intensely bright flash. Like the light from a thousand exploding sun, the boy is forced to cover his eyes or else he would go blind.
After the boy feels that it’s safe to open his eyes, he sees a huge fireball rising tens of miles away in the horizon. Even though it is impossible to see from this distance, the boy knows the fireball had vaporize everything it touches. The heat from the explosion is so powerful the boy can feel it from where he’s standing. The fireball continues rising into the air, climbing higher and higher like a demon clawing its way out of hell. As it rises, the ground under the blast it sucked up. Dirt, dust, pieces of rock, anything that is there is shattered into tiny particles.
The rising fireball super-heats the air, and the boy instinctively knows what’s about to happen. The air is blasted outwards and creates a shock wave. Faster than the boy could react, the shock wave reaches him and knocks him and everything around him backwards. The boy is thrown like a rag-doll until he slams into a stop against a cliff wall.
Before the boy could even process what has been happening to him these last few seconds, a huge slab of rock that is being carried by the shock wave suddenly decides it wants to be best friend with the boy and smashes into him, killing the boy and waking him up from his dream.
The boy finds himself staring at the ceiling of the infirmary.
“Fuck me…” the boy whispers to no one but himself. “That’s something new.”
The boy rises from the bed he has spent the night in and sits up right, his feet dangling just inches off the floor.
Weird, the boy ponders. He has never died in his dream before. His dream always ends with him wishing he would die while cradling his dead loved ones. Sure, he’ll be bleeding and be covered from head to toe with wounds, but he has never died from them.
Something has changed, the boy could feel it. He didn't notice it last night because he was so happy after discovering Marven, Athorius and the rest are still alive, but something is coming for him. Like an arrow that has been shot from a bow. Only this time the boy could not be sure he could stop this arrow from finding its target, him.
Try as he might, the boy could not discern the nature of the thing that is after his life. It’s moving too fast, ungodly fast. Like something out of this world. What the hell could it be? the boy wonders. Was it sent by the person/being/thing that made the Razors?
And why last night? the boy continues to contemplate. What happened last night that made his dream change drastically? Nothing major, the boy thinks. I exposed a secret society that was hidden in the shadows for hundreds of years, announced the ending of the world brought by monsters from the Khazun mountain range, and may have accidentaly let slip Master Wes’s penchant for creating love poetries. Nothing that would warrant his untimely death at the hand of an unknown force.
The boy dismisses the thought that Master Haithur could be behind the thing that continues to elude his senses. That man doesn't have the skill or the power to pull something like this off. He couldn't get even pass the guards Headmaster Joss posted at the door of the infirmary to discourage any attempts on the boy’s life.
The boy’s stomach growls. That’s something new as well. During his stay in the Time Abyss, he didn't suffer from the need to eat or drink. But now his body craves nourishment, and the boy can’t think or be hungry at the same time. The guards would bring the boy food if he asked them to, even making sure it is safe for consumption in case a particular teacher decides the boy needed some “he-knows-too-much” poison in his diet. But they would undoubtedly forget to bring his favourite blueberry muffins. And those are running out fast in the north hall where they are serving breakfast now.
If he hurries, he can get the blueberry muffins before they are all gone, even if there are some obstacles in the way. The boy slips out the window of the infirmary, landing two floors down with the grace of a cat. The height is nothing to him, after you've fallen through a Time Abyss, everything else looks so… minuscule.
As the boy walks through the courtyard heading towards the north hall, a group of students surrounds him, just as expected. The boy sighs, there are only 16 blueberry muffins left so he needs to wrap this up fast.
“You there, stop.” A haughty beautiful girl with golden pigtails stood in his path, her followers blocking all the boy’s exit. “You’re performance last night is pretty good. You should come work for me as a court jester in my palace.” The girl laughs and her followers laugh as well.
“Gods… 15 blueberry muffins left.” the boy sighs again. “Guys, your acting skills are worse than a children school play.”
“14 blueberry muffins left. I've just brought you news of Armageddon last night, and instead of preparing for it, you Ouroboros rejects are still trying to score brownie points with Master Haithur.”
“13 blueberry muffins left. Look I know Master Haithur sent you with orders to rough me up. And I know most of you guys are just normal ass hole students who are are itching to kick in my teeth and break my ribs. But this guy right here, he’s with Ouroboros, and he has a small knife coated with poison given to him secretly by Master Haithur.”
“12 blueberry muffins left. We’re going to start fighting... and someone or several someone is going to get nicked or stabbed... and it’s not going to be me.”
“11 blueberry muffins left. Fine, since you guys are still determined. You there. Yes you, the one with the bad haircut. You’re the fastest runner out of all these Ouroboros wannabes. Go to Mistress Ricon’s office and get the antidotes from her cabinet. The blue vials. Yes, her office is unlocked. Hurry, your friends will be needing them soon. ”
“I said quick march to the south, man!”
“10 blueberry muffins left. Okay, now that he’s gone. Pigtails girl, stop shaking and crying. I'm going to say something insulting like ‘Court jester? But that position has already been filled by your father.’ And you’ll pretend to be outraged.”
“9 blueberry muffins left. Come on, be angry.”
“I am… outraged…”
“You might want to work on that line again next time, and possibly with less tears down your face. Now you, Gargantuan. You’re supposed to say ‘You have dishonoured my lady’s honour…’ Wait, the word dishonored doesn't fit quite well…”
“Fuck. It’s on the tip of my tongue… I can’t… What’s the word I'm looking for?”
“8 blueberry muffins left. Thank you! Boy whose both arms I'm going to break in another two minutes.”
“Fine, I’ll just break one of your arms as gratitude. Gargantuan, your line?”
“You have offended my lady’s honour! I challenge you to a duel!”
“7 blueberry muffins left. Good, Gargantuan. I like the enthusiasm and the delivery. Although that bit about the duel is unnecessary since you guys are going to be rushing me at the same time in another minute.”
“It’s okay, I understand. I actually prefer it that way, saves me the time of dealing with you gu- SON OF A BITCH!”
“Sorry, that mother fucker just took 2 blueberry muffins at the same time. You’re supposed to only take one, ass hole.”
“5 blueberry muffins left. Okay now Gargantuan, are you sure you don’t want to sit this one out? Because you’re a big guy, and the only place I'm going to hit to bring down someone your size is going to hurt like hell. You probably have to cancel any plans of rubbing one out tonight to the image of pigtails girl here.”
“You should put some ice on that. Okay, who’s next? There’s like 4 blueberry muffins left and I haven’t got all day.”