Chapter Zero

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Hey lovelies, so this is my first ever story, hope you like it!❤️
I have a thing with emojis, cue spamming emojis in the comments lol.

Edit: I changed the title and plot of this story as of 2019, for anyone concerned that you're reading the wrong book, no I changed the title and description and the first few chapters. Hope you enjoy :)

© 2019 by sarahrreading

All rights reserved. No part of this document may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronically, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without prior written permission of @sarahrreading

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Dedicated to Sinadana for the beautiful cover!

Chapter Zero (Prologue)

The little girl stood staring with contempt hatred at the temple of the gods. Towering statues poised proudly with intricately cleaved marble in flourishes that seemed to defy the typical talents of handcraft. The elaborate colosseum didn't concern the child. In fact, despite her young age, she found it bitterly ironic that her destination of refuge was the same refuge that she had despised her whole life— a sacred palace for the religious citizens of Attonia.

Even as she huddled, shivering beneath the sheets of rain that pattered in harmony to her tears, her body resisted against her thoughts when she had nowhere left to go. With a final shake of her head, she fled to the corners of the temple, shuddering while admiring the dapples of silver light gleaming against the star-flecked backdrop.

A beautiful rainy night of bloodshed.

For the first time in her existence, the girl willingly pressed her palms together as blood tracked down her chin. Inside the hatred, pain, and resent that coiled deep within her chest, she felt the glimpses of hope peaking past her rotten heart. Somehow the hope stood as the most prominent of her emotions. And so, she begun to chant her first and final prayer.

Please gods, save me.

The girl may have found tales of gods and demons foolish but believers and nonbeliever alike found themselves crying out in desperation, praying in times of need near death. And the girl was no different. Even with her silent pleas, the heavy thump of footsteps sounded through the night like the music of death itself. Alarmed, she was up and running, sobbing all the way. Remaining hidden was fruitless, escaping was her only option. She had one simple goal—survival, but it seemed too selfish of a request even from a child in the face of a greedy world.

As she ran, she found herself arriving in the shanty slums of the city. In her rags and wounds, she seemed agreeable with the residents of the poor district, but it wasn't enough. She acquainted herself with a small group of kids with the leader being the filthiest from his dark scent and crooked grin, they could do little to help her escape when the girl's pursuer was mere paces behind. With twanging fear, the girl whimpered as her pursuer gripped her from behind.

Pushed to the ground by the pursuer's henchmen, heads begun to turn the other way in feigned ignorance, typical when ones' self-preservation is in play to save the skin of their own teeth even if their values are begged into question. Yet understandably, they would never intervene when the contention concerned the expensive man before them. A man of power.

As the girl lied crumpled at their feet in a pool of her own blood, the leading henchman's iron boots dug into her left cheek, as the sewage trodden pavement scraped her right. She was left to watch the kids pitying expressions as their leader, with one more lingering glance, ushered them away. She brought only trouble and more trouble is the last scrap any street kid needed in their life of brute and blood. Yet, her hands inched forward anyway reaching out to anyone and anything.

How pathetic. No one would save her as she was left to the glee of these scary men.

When at last the realization that she was utterly and truly alone struck, her eyes flitted upwards, glaring mindlessly at the dark sky even when the man crouched down raking his fingers across her bloody temple before bringing his other fist down for the knocking blow that would end her freedom and life.

When the blessed darkness rose to claim her, the girl's final thoughts seemed to scream in a pitiful attempt to be gleaned by any god who was merciful enough to listen.

Curse the gods, they care for no one and will save no one, even if the world burns in the hands of its own festered evil.

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