Chapter 11:Cursed Child
'What were all these useless messages appearing in front of me?'
Ray didn't have time to look at them for he dismissed them as soon as possible. The strange boxes were just a hindrance to his task.
He went over to where Amy was lying on the ground and checked if there were any noticeable wounds. Fortunately, it didn't look like Amy suffered any significant injuries. She just passed out from the stress and shock.
Picking her up he placed her on his back.
Then, he swept his gaze across the area and noticed that Gary was still out cold under the tree as well, as for the other two…
Ray wasn't so sure about their condition.
Shaking his head, he knew he couldn't bring them all back.
His strength was only enough to carry one more person.
But if someone was left alone here without consciousness, then they would surely be eaten by the other lesser beasts. Beasts often ate the leftovers of those beasts with higher tiers than them. Knowing this, he couldn't possibly leave them here.
But he knew that he had to make a choice.
He only knew Gary and Amy. He had no idea who the two other boys were, so he proceeded to pick up Gary and carried him in his arms, while Amy laid softly on his back.
The journey out of the forest was painfully slower than his journey into it. Even though he felt as if he had far more energy than before, carrying two people was still a daunting task even for Ray.
He?had no idea for how long he continued to carry the two, all that he knew was that in the entire process, his vision was swimming and he kept on fighting to keep himself awake.
It seemed like the wound across his chest had also impacted him.
Eventually, he managed to reach the exit of the forest and then entered the village where he could hear someone speaking.
"There are some kids over here!"
"It looks like they came from the forest."
"They must be the missing kids, call their parents, quick!"
The whole village came down quickly to see what was happening. Using both of his hands, Ray gently placed both Amy and Gary onto the ground.
"Please check them.. if they are okay…" Ray tried standing up and walking away from the area, but he soon fell onto the ground instead. He was just too weak at this moment, all that he could hear were voices amidst his swimming vision.
"What the hell happened here?"
"I have no idea, he came here carrying Gary and Amy. The three of them came from the direction of the forest."
"Gary and Amy? What about Bob and Kyle?"
"I'm sorry, he was only carrying these two…"
Ray couldn't see clearly at this point, but he knew that the person who was approaching him was a woman. That woman held him by his collar and lifted him off the ground, shouting,
"Where are Bob and Kyle?!" She cried.
Ray wanted to reply, but he was far too tired. He couldn't move any part of his body at all.
Suddenly, the frustrated woman slapped him across his face.
"You're the one who caused this, you cursed child! This is all your fault! Where are my children?! Give me back my children!"
Ray couldn't believe what was happening. But he knew that this woman was too scared to go into the forest by herself, so she was taking out her frustrations on him.
The others, instead of coming to his defence, started to back up the woman.
"Tell her where they are!"
"He was probably the one that lured them into the forest…"
"The curse is true! Look at what happened to those around him!"
The woman began to slap Ray repeatedly on the face. Every time Ray felt his consciousness slip, the woman would slap him awake, asking where were her children.
Ray gnashed his teeth and used the last bit of his strength to say, "They are… in… the… forest…"
The woman had stopped holding Ray's collar, and he fell back onto the ground.
"You only carried Gary and Amy here? You left them there to die?!" She shouted.
The others backed her up once again.
"How could he be so heartless… He managed to save Gary and Amy, yet why didn't he save Bob and Kyle?"
"Bob and Kyle are children, just how can they possibly survive deep in the forest?"
The murmurs around Ray made him feel aggrieved. Had these people forgotten that he was also a child? Or was the fact that his hair had turned red made them forget that he was still human?
'They are already thinking that I'm a monster; they don't see me as a child.'
Ray lifted a bitter smile.
At this moment, he understood that these humans were far scarier than the beasts whom they were deeply afraid of.
In fact, they were the true monsters.
The woman grabbed a wooden plank and she started walking towards Ray's direction. It was obvious what she was about to do to Ray, but no one wanted to stop her.
Ray gnashed his teeth.
'Is this how I am going to die?'
'Dying by a wooden plank?'
'What a joke… I promise that if I ever get a third chance, then I will return everything tenfold.'
The woman swung the wooden plank towards Ray's head, but something stopped it before it could arrive. Ray opened his eyes once more and discovered a small boy with curly blonde hair standing in front of Ray.
The young boy was Gary.
But before Ray could even begin to comprehend what was about to happen. His exhaustion finally caught up to him and he fell onto the ground, unconscious.
Just a few moments ago, Gary had woken up.
He couldn't believe that he was still alive with his sister laying on the ground beside him.
Just how did he survive the wolf's attack?
The last thing that he could remember was getting hit by the wolf's vicious claws.
Gary clutched his aching head and scoured the surroundings. He could see the entire village surrounding Ray. Beside him were his parents and he stood up to ask them, "What is going on…?"
"How did I get out of the forest?" Gary asked.
"When we heard the news, we rushed over here and saw you being carried by Ray. I can't believe that he would force you and the others to go into the forest…" Gary's mother said with an aggrieved look on her face.
"That cursed child… How dare he try to do such a thing!" His father angrily said.
Gary's parents had already taken what the others were saying as the irrefutable truth. For them, it was the only explanation for they couldn't believe that their children were stupid enough to go into the forest by their own aside from if they were being forced.
But Gary knew that they couldn't be farther from the truth. It was his idea to go into the forest to hunt some beasts in order to gain real-life battle experiences. In short, the only explanation that Gary had as to why they were still alive was that Ray must've saved them from death.
This theory was further solidified when he saw that Ray had claw marks across his chest, those injuries obviously came from the wolf that Gary had fought against earlier. But why was everyone attacking their saviour?
Gary quickly moved away from his parents and unsheathed his sword. As the wooden plank was about to hit Ray's face, he swung and made a clean cut right in the middle of the wooden plank. The splinters missed Ray's face and the two sections of the wood fell onto the floor.
"I will not let anyone harm me and my sister's saviour…" Gary decisively declared.