Cerbous turned his face away from Ceres and looked at the lake instead.
“Mother didn’t die right after you were born. She died two days after you were born.”
Ceres was indifferent with this knowledge because she doesn’t recall this from the previous Ceres’ memories. She was also interested in this new information and was listening intently.
“Father wasn’t there when mother died. He had to leave the day after you were born. I was the only one beside mother at that time. The servants knew that mother would die soon and allowed us to have our time alone. She was carrying you while crying at the same time. I remember her last words to me. Even though I was only five years old at that time, I kept it and engraved it in my heart.”
Cerbous looked at Ceres and stroke her hair.
“The mistress is weak right now. I believe that she…”
Three female servants were standing outside the mistress’ room. The mistress inside the room was Ceres’ mother, Iona.
One of the female servants was dressed differently. She was the head of the mistress’ servants and Ceraph’s personal appointed servant for Iona.
Before she became an Ellion, Iona was the only daughter of a village head. Ceraph and Iona met while the former was patrolling some villages near the borders. There was nothing particular about Iona except for her warm aura and kind heart. This was also the reason why a lot of people were against her and Ceraph’s marriage particularly on Ceraph’s side. However, Ceraph is the pride of not only Ellion family but also of Winsterein kingdom. How can they deprive him of his wish to marry such woman?
Even though she wasn’t favored by anyone on the Ellion mansion, they didn’t treat her that bad. Of course, everything was because of Ceraph’s status and power. And, she was happy as long as Ceraph and her son were safe.
Ceraph was always away leaving Iona and Cerbous alone most of the times. Then, Cerbous was scouted by Soaring Dragon. This means that sooner or later, he will also leave his mother behind. This made her feel lonely, somehow. But then, when she knew she was pregnant, she became happy once again. All she wanted was for her second child to have a safe and happy life. That was all and she would definitely be happy. She strongly believed that her second child will definitely be alright.
But, not all things come to a good end.
Iona was having problems carrying the child in her womb. The doctors have told her to abandon the child so that she’ll live long. However, how can a mother abandon her own child? She insisted on having that child even though she knew that she wouldn’t live long enough to see that child grow.
“Don’t speak those kinds of things! We have to report this to the head immediately.”
The head servant was apprehending her fellow servant.
“Even if we report this and the master learned of it, the master wouldn’t be able to get here on time.”
Yet again, another servant was badly cursing the mistress. The head servant can’t believe that this is even her mistress’ servants.
“No matter what. We have to send a report to the master and we must also tell this to the head. You, stay here and make sure that the mistress will be okay. You, go to the head’s office and report this. I will call for a doctor and also, send master a message.”
The head servant immediately ordered them of what to do. She, on the other hand, immediately called for a doctor and also, called Cerbous to be together with his mother. Then, she sent a message to the master. Even though everything was supposed to be going through the head of the family, Arcyl, she was the personal servant that Ceraph appointed. She had a lot of exceptions and also, a lot of ways.
Cerbous saw his mother. At five years old, he was also more mature than most of the kids his age. He understood that their mother will die soon. He was clenching his fists so hard that blood can be seen dripping from it.
“Son… Don’t b-be like that.”
His mother, seeing the blood, was feeling hurt. How can she not? She knows that her children are still very young and yet, she was about to leave them for good. Any mother would feel sad knowing that she can’t do anything.
Iona was carrying the baby Ceres. She was feeling more depress than ever.
“Son, Cerbous, I know that you’re still young… But, can you take care of your sister? Please… Please make sure that she is safe. Let her live, experience things… This is… A lot for a child like you but… You’re her brother. You know what to do… Remember that you’re her brother and she is your sister… I’m sorry, son. Mom… Can’t make it anymore.”
Iona was looking at the baby Ceres and hugging her tightly. She was crying but she still looked so refine and delicate. It was as if she knew of the time.
Iona gave the baby Ceres to Cerbous. Cerbous didn’t talk because he knew that no matter what he says, his mother will still go.
“…Mom is tired… I will sleep… Remember… Mom will always, always be… Watching you from above… And, I… Love… You.”
Then, Iona closed her eyes and she had those tear tracks on her face. She looked like she was only sleeping but, of course, with a closer look, one will know that she wasn’t breathing anymore. She died just like that; peaceful and solemn.
Cerbous was about to go out with the baby Ceres on his arms when he saw an envelope on the side table. Written on the envelope with bold letters were the words: To my loving husband, Ceraph.
“Mom is always…”
Then, his sight started to become hazy.
“…Careless, as usual.”
A tear fell from one of his eyes. He wiped it and its track. Then, he went out of the room.
He never cried even though his mother died in front of him. He kept a strong face because as a young child, he knew that he can’t be soft-hearted like his mother. He knew what responsibilities he carries on his shoulder. Yet, the moment he saw that letter, everything just sank in. He was still a young boy. He was powerless… Much more so, against fate.
After calming himself down, he picked up the letter and hid it. He knew that aside from his father, he shouldn’t let anyone see this letter.
When Cerbous went out with baby Ceres, the doctor came in with the head. Arcyl was in the royal palace that time so he was also late. When everyone knew that Iona died, they immediately prepared the funeral. Ceraph was on his way to the borders and so, Arcyl sent him a message the instant that he knew Iona was dead. Although they didn’t know how long it would take for Ceraph to arrive, they were surprised to see him in less than a day.
Ceraph immediately went over to his wife’s corpse. He was a man who was used to killings and seeing dead bodies all over the place. Yet, seeing his wife on that stone table, he can’t help but cry. Everyone was stunned because they knew how fierce and strong this general is on the battlefield. And, seeing this general crying over his wife’s death, everyone realized that he was still a human, after all.
Ceraph didn’t immediately go back to work. He told everyone that he needed a time alone with his son and daughter. They respected his decision. Even the king of Winsterein kingdom sent his condolences and told him that he can mourn for as long as he needs. But of course, as a general, he knew that he can’t. -tbc
A/N: I was seriously thinking twice whether I should go online or not. But, here I am again. 😀 Anyway, I hope you enjoyed reading! Thank you so much!!!