Chapter 9

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 "Grace had a vision, and with it, she built an empire. She shaped the world for years to come," Robbie said. He stood from his chair and walked to the wall. He placed his hand on the wall, and it slowly deteriorated. It started from his hand and crawled to the corners, it spread to the other walls and ate away at the roof. Cynthia was amazed. It took her a moment to realize that she wasn't in Alexandria. She was on a cliff, overlooking a vast city.

She recognized the dirt mounds that stood as tall as mountains. The sun felt so familiar that she felt at home. The temples she didn't remember — a pyramid, made of a strange material. It was a coarse silver. Streams flowed out of the temple and connected to a nearby river. The river had a single bridge that connected the houses on both sides. Trees grew freely, and it reminded her of a paradise.

"Your mom built this?" Cynthia asked, still taking in the scene. "Yes, but she did so much more," Robbie said. He started walking down the dune towards the pyramid. Cynthia followed him carefully, so she didn't tumble the whole way down. She was too busy watching her steps to notice Robbie stop. She walked right into his back and hit the floor. He was staring at the temple. At one of the entrances was the most beautiful woman.

She gave off an energy that Cynthia had never seen. Her aura felt warm, kind, and safe. A strange material hugged her skin gently but left the bump that was her belly, bare. "She's pregnant?" Cynthia asked. "They were born with the power of a God," Robbie answered. He turned to Cynthia and offered her his hand. He picked her up and instantly they were in the temple.

A woman ran by, and they quickly followed. "My Queen, the boy isn't getting any better. None of the treatments are helping," the woman said. You could tell the woman was holding back tears. Grace sat in a large marble chair. She sat with her hands in her lap, Grace's head was slightly tilted up, and her eyes closed. It looked like she was meditating. There was no roof in this room. The moonlight draped over her and highlighted her aura. Even though her child was sick, she held such power. Cynthia envied her.

Suddenly, Grace got out of her chair and stormed out of the room. Grace walked right through Cynthia and Robbie. Cynthia quickly followed her. Grace turned into a room down the hall. It was much larger than the previous room. It was empty except for the pile of blankets in the center of the room, at the top of the mountain was a little boy, bundled into his concave. He looked like nothing was wrong with him at all — just a sleepy baby. Grace walked up to the baby and picked him up.

Time quickly began to speed up. The lights in the temple went from light to dark and bright again. Grace held the baby, walking around the room, singing to him. She fed him and cleaned him. Grace was the only one that touched him. In this, Cynthia could see Grace as herself. Hopeless but with relentless.

Time began to slow as Grace placed the baby back into his burrow. Grace took her spot along the slope of blankets and fell asleep. The boy no longer looked healthy. He had lost color in his skin. His eyes swollen, and he had a low cry. It was heartbreaking Cynthia thought, like the boy was struggling to cry. A few nurses came in when they heard the baby.

"Why do they look afraid?" Cynthia asked. The nurses looked like they were arguing, but both of their faces spelled fear. "My mom liberated people, to do so, she had to kill others," Robbie answered. He didn't make eye contact with Cynthia. His eyes fixed on the baby. Finally, the nurses stopped arguing, it looked like they agreed, but the look on their faces told Cynthia it wasn't mutual.

One of the nurses walked up to the pile of blankets and picked up the baby. She rocked him back and forth. Immediately, the baby stopped crying. The other nurse let a smile across her face. The nurse holding the baby met her with a smile, but it immediately changed. Her skin slowly lost its color, until her body was a pale blue. She collapsed, the other nurse sprinted but was too late. Grace caught the baby before he hit the floor. The color had returned to his skin.

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