Published August 04, 2016 by

Memories of a Soul in the Underworld Chapter 6

Story Summary

Ethan is a soul in the Underworld with no memory of his life on Earth. He is bought and sold by various masters for centuries. Traveling from large industrial towns to scorching hot deserts. During his journey he picks up the skills, knowledge and magic to escape his enslavement. He runs with the intent of living a free life, but is pursued by agents until he's cornered on a remote mountain range. With little time left, Ethan begins to recount his life and masters in the hope of leaving a record of his existence. These are his memories.

I watched the hope in her eyes disappear when she realized that I wasn't the guy she wanted.

"Oh, it's you Ethan," she sighed. "It's so dim in here that you kind of look like him, when you stand there like that."

I looked at her blankly with no idea how to respond. I wasn't sure how to talk to the girl who ignored me for weeks, and I was in the middle of doing something I shouldn't.

"Why are you in Master's study anyway? Is this magic?" Anya walked into the room to examine my chalk diagram and the light floating above it.

"Kind of, sort of, in a way," I nervously stuttered. "I found a book in the library and decided to give some of the stuff inside a go."

"Wow, you did this yourself?" She looked at the orb I'd created in amazement. "I had no idea that it was possible to make something like this, but I guess it's still nothing compared to what Master can do."

I'm not certain if she was intentionally trying to be cruel, but her words were a punch to my self confidence. Even when he was gone I was still nothing compared to Alistair.

"What are you doing here Anya?" I asked without bothering to hide my irritation.

"Don't tell anyone this," she said nervously. "But sometimes I come in here to look around. Everything in here reminds me of him, if you know what I mean."

"I suppose," I muttered. Looking around the room it was difficult to imagine that our master had even left.

She picked up a glass paperweight from his desk and turned it over in her hand. It began to glow a dull pink, and I wouldn't have been surprised if even Alistair's stationery was magical.

"I wonder if he's okay," said Anya. "Felix told me that lots of people die when there's a war."

"I'm sure Master's fine," I said even though I knew nothing. "He's really good at chanting spells, and immortal, so there's no way he'll die."

"Yes, I know that," she sighed. "But I still worry about him all the time, so much that it hurts. Sometimes I wonder if he ever thinks about me too." She glanced up at me. "But I guess I'm not important enough to that guy."

"I'm sure he thinks of you, he even told me himself." It was a lie, but the words slipped from my mouth before I could stop.

"Really?" she asked hopefully. "He said that?"

"Of course!" I was such an idiot. "He was worried about you being alright without him, but I said that someone as strong as Anya can survive no matter what."

"And then what did he say?"

"I don't remember." I was running out of ideas. "But he looked glad."

"He looked glad? Even though he was going to a war zone?"

"Of course. Because he was relieved that you would be fine here without him, and wait for ages, I think."

Anya paused to process my words. "I'm happy that he was thinking of me, but I wish he told me that himself."

"You know how Master is," I shrugged. "Maybe he was just too shy to say it to your face."

I'm amazed that she believed me because it was the exact opposite of what Alistair would have done. That weirdo would have never hesitated to voice something like that out loud.

Anya's mouth broke into a smile and it was the first time I'd seen her happy in weeks.

"That funny guy," she giggled, and I can't believe how willing I was to say anything in order to make her like me.

"Hey, you learnt this from a book right," she said and pointed to my magical orb. "Can I see it?"

She took a step towards me, but instead of walking around the circle she went straight through it.

I saw the chalk lines smudge together under her foot. All of a sudden the drawing brightly glowed and I remembered the book's warning about explosions.

"Anya watch out!" I cried and dived towards her.

I knocked her to the ground and attempted to use my body as a shield, but I wasn't fast enough to get us out of the way. There was a loud bang and the diagram exploded in a brilliant flash of white light. When the smoke finally cleared there was a new burnt patch on Alistair's floor in the shape of my circle.

Anya and I may have had the bodies of ghosts and escaped unharmed, but the hem of her skirt and my trouser legs weren't so lucky. The edges of her maid uniform had been burnt to a crisp, leaving most of her long legs exposed.

All I could think of was Alistair's face looking at the damage in horror, but Anya began to laugh uncontrollably like it was hilarious.

"Ethan, I can't believe that you just blew up Master's floor," she giggled.

Anya flopped back onto the floor like a rag doll and I watched her chest move up and down with each laugh. I couldn't help but think about how she was still beneath me, and her face was inches from my own.

"Ethan?" said Anya when she noticed my unusual fascination with her mouth.

She looked at me curiously, and that would have been the perfect moment to do something, anything, but instead I quickly shuffled away from her like the spineless coward I was.

Anya pulled herself to her feet and brushed the burnt crisps off her skirt. Luckily she couldn't read my thoughts because I was ashamed for thinking inappropriate things about my friend.

"Good luck explaining this to Master," she said and rolled the mat back into place to cover the damage. "He's going to be so mad at you when he sees this."

"I'll think of something," I muttered. I came up with plenty of creative excuses over the following weeks.

"I better get started on my chores," said Anya and she turned to leave the room. "It would be a disaster if Master returned tomorrow to find the kitchen in that mess. Let me know if you need anything, Ethan."

And with that she walked out and left me alone.

"I'm such an idiot," I moaned and collapsed face first to the floor, wallowing in self pity for what felt like eternity. "This is all your fault." I glared at the magic book which lay discarded halfway across the room. "Perhaps there's a reason why souls can't do magic spells."

I lay there until I grew tired of staring at the pattern on the rug, then pulled myself together and stood up to fix the mess I'd created.

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