Growing up, Al spent a lot of time away from family. His parents being investigators didn’t give him much time with them and, as a result, he could no longer remember their names. The only thing he did remember was that fateful night of horror.
He had been with his parents, sitting on the floor in front of them playing, when the door to their meager residence blew inward. As things turned to chaos he was stuffed in a small closet by his mother and told to keep very quiet and still.
He sat there, shivering in fright and confusion as the sounds of battle came to him from the other side of the door. Terrified, he fell into a restless sleep.
He woke up a few hours later to an eerie silence that seemed to weigh on him like a ton of bricks. Slowly opening the door, he stared out at the scene.
His mother lay on the other side of the room in a pool of red. His father was nowhere in sight. Crawling on all fours, he approached his mother, a feeling of dread and panicky anguish washing over him. Awhhhhh! Something punctured his hand as he brought it down.
Lifting it, he discovered a dagger lying in the rubble, coated in the same red liquid his mother was lying in. Reaching down, he picked it up, not caring how sticky it felt, or how much his hand hurt from the stab wound.
His throat hitching as he attempted to hold back the sobs, Alendaar crawled the rest of the way to the body of his mother and threw himself over it, still holding the dagger that had killed her. That’s the way the town guard found him.
No one questioned it when he was charged for his mother’s murder, and when he was dragged before court, he saw his father, a look of disgust and rage on his face. At this, he could not hold back the grief, the feelings of betrayal, as he watched his dad approach. With each step his father came closer, Al sobbed even harder.
“Is this your son?”
“No, I don’t know him! My son is loving! He would never kill his own mother!”
“You may go.”
Al watched his father as he gazed one last time at him, wondering how his he could blame him for his mother’s death.
After the mock trial, they locked him in the castle dungeon and left him there to rot, bringing him meals of old stale bread and brown water. Each day his stomach would snarl at him, begging for the food his mom would fix.
It seemed like years passed in that dank pit of horror and despair, wishing he might die and escape this place of injustice and missing his mom, before he built up the nerve to attempt a jailbreak. It didn’t take much to find the loose bricks under the mound of stale reeking straw, and his escape was mostly complete before any alarm was raised about his disappearance. But try as they might, the guards never found him. He had heard rumors later on that the guards who were overseeing the dungeon that day had been put to heaven, and he smiled with a certain sense of satisfaction. Served them right, locking up a child for a crime he couldn’t possibly have committed.