118 Boundless Origins - Kiran
Kiran frowned as he took off his Virtua Helmet, tossing it to the side with an irritated gesture. It had nothing to do with anything that occurred while in-game, but due to the reason, he had to stop his gaming in order to log out.
It was exactly 8:00 am on 29/03/2065.
Kiran heard the low gong that echoed around the entirety of the Ancestral Home, which arose all the sleeping family members, as well as notified them that it was time for the daily assembly and meditation.
From his response, one could ascertain that Kiran didn't really enjoy this daily ceremony, but had no choice but to attend.
Kiran quickly washed himself up and donned some clean, light brown robes that were a bit too large for him, along with a red sash with no designs on it.
It looked to be the penultimate choice in any fashion lover's wardrobe. Kiran hated its blandness and bagginess, but he had sucked up to this discomfort for many years now.
Why was it that wearing it today really irked him to the highest level? What had changed from the 10 years he had performed this act on a daily basis when contrasted with doing the same thing again today?
Kiran took a few deep breaths and combed his golden blond hair, allowing his bangs to maintain some semblance of order.
Coupled with his aqua blue eyes, Kiran was a generic type of handsome. He wouldn't look out of place in either a boy band or a magazine cover, but one would find him to be a bit similar to all the other models in a general sense.
Kiran exited his room, which was a small chamber with wooden flooring, as well as sliding doors made of wood and paper. Kiran had a western bed in his room, but most of his kin preferred to sleep on the floor with mats and a blanket.
Kiran walked along the open-air wooden hallways of his particular dwelling, forming a line behind the other youths of his age who were also shuffling along to their destination.
They all wore sandals that had smooth soles, allowing them to sort of 'glide' along the hallway without making much noise as they did so. Kiran didn't bother to observe his 'family' as he went, but they didn't give him the same level of disregard.
A lot of eyes were on the blond-haired and handsome man, but not in the way one expected. It was not looks of jealousy or looks of desire, but rather looks of pity and slight schadenfreude.
Why would his own clanmates stare at him in such a manner despite him not doing anything noticeable? Why would they pity him when he was just the same as any of them, without any deficiencies or weaknesses?
Kiran knew the reason, and it was why he hated attending any ceremony involving his generation, or the clan in general.
Eventually, his group passed through a few airy and very vibrant courtyards with a heavy botanical presence. The sights, smells, and sounds of the area served to make one relax and feel at peace with themselves.
Even Kiran felt his taut nerves loosen a bit as he took in this ambiance, so the effect on his clanmates was even more pronounced. They all moved quietly, with looks of peace and wonderment.
Kiran stared at the pagoda before him, which had a stone-based construction for the walls and brick tiles for the roof of each floor.
Each of the clan's youth that had shuffled their way here from various living areas, came to a neat and orderly stop in front of this pagoda. Just as they had done since they were 10 years old, they gazed up at this building with some mixture of apprehension and awe.
They wore this same expression every single day they stood before this 10 floor pagoda as if it was their first time gazing upon its aged splendor.
Only Kiran gazed at this building with nonchalance and a bit of disdain.
Soon, the various elders of Kiran's clan came forth. They stood in front of the youth and smiled at them genially. They began the daily routine of extolling the virtues of the clan and their Progenitor, who had long left the world layer to seek revenge for their race.
Kiran listened uninterestedly with no real expression on his face, but the same couldn't be said for his clanmates as they seemed enthralled and moved by the splendor of their Progenitor.
"Now, you shall enter the Heaven's Pagoda to receive the blessings of our Progenitor!" The Clan Elder bellowed with a raise of his hands.
'This is it…' Kiran thought as his face became grim.
The same thing happened to his other clanmates, as their enthusiasm died out a bit, being replaced with trepidation. They all faltered in their desire here, being unable to take a step forward.
However, as was the normal occurrence every single day, Kiran was the first to step out with a calm expression and a resolute gait.
When the various members of the older generation saw him, their faces became strange and colorful. It was like a noble in the royal court gazing at the deformed son of the King.
They would rather pretend he did not exist, but could not do so due to their own stations.
Kiran entered the pagoda, which had a basic and minimalistic furnishing. It was a large and empty floor with just one tatami mat in the middle.
Kiran walked up to it, seated himself and began to meditate.
Once he did, strange energies and markings began to appear on his body as well as all around him. It was a sight that would make a normal person's heartbeat erratically, as they beheld a sight that was not natural.
Kiran's body shone, and a strange orb that glowed with a gentle golden light emerged from his chest area, hovering before him as it began to spin in a clockwise motion.
Its speed picked up as more energy emerged around Kiran, and his body began to float from the ground.
Kiran's face was locked in the rictus of a snarl, as large beads of sweat began to form on his face. The pressure on his mind and body was enormous, similar to trying to carry a 200kg weight while having a serious migraine.
However, Kiran's most notable trait was not his ability to retain his composure neither was it his handsomeness, but rather his tenacity and willpower. Not even Draco or Eva could claim to be as stubborn as this fellow.
Kiran clenched his teeth as he writhed in agony, but the energy and strange symbols were continually sucked up by the bead he put forth.
The bead began to throb like a pulsing heart as more energy was fed into it and a faint silhouette formed around its shape.
It was the silhouette of a woman, who looked to be quite attractive based on her outline alone.
Kiran's eyes became red as he pushed himself to coax more energy out of the ambient area and into the bead, with a low roar erupting from his mouth as he reached a crescendo.
Kiran felt his mind begin to blacken as he had overtaxed himself, his body beginning to droop as he leaned forward.
However, his fall was halted by a soft and warm hand cupping his face, as well as an extremely gentle and ethereal voice whispering to him.
Kiran's fall into unconsciousness was halted by this touch and this voice, as he slowly clawed his way back to sensibility. He beheld the form of the beautiful woman before him with excitement and sorrow.
His voice was anguished as he spoke softly, carrying the weight of his 20+ years of pain and suffering.
The woman who stood before him was of the same height and build as Kiran, with a lean and toned body. Her body glowed with a gentle kaleidoscope of colors, adding to the mysticism of her presence.
She had long hair that was reddish-brown in color, with the same aqua blue eyes as her young son. She wore a long brown dress with a sash that floated around her.
(Author's Note: She looks like https://i.imgur.com/cBMwzVz.jpg)
One could easily see the relation between them as they took in the contours of their faces. They were so alike that it was quite uncanny.
"My darling boy, why do you suffer so for an expired soul like me?" The Soul Apparition spoke with a gentle melancholy as she saw the aftereffects of her son pushing himself so far.
"I am but a mirage, a shadow of my previous self that has been attached to your Sarira. Why do you waste your precious talent and time feeding me energy when you could use it to strengthen yourself?"
The confusion was apparent on her face. It was clear that Kiran's efforts in doing this had not been a thing of the moment, but a recurring act he made every time he came to this pagoda.
Strengthening this so-called 'shadow' of his mother's soul for many days and many years, he had finally been able to push past his limit and materialize her.
There were so many things Kiran wanted to say, but he chose to stick with what was really important.
"Mom, I love you."
Kiran stared at her with intense emotions on his face as he spat this line out with all his conviction.
This reply, coupled with the look in his eye and the tone in his voice, carried so many meanings that the Soul Apparition was visibly trembling.
With this one phrase, Kiran had answered her question, expressed his passion and opened his heart and soul.
The Soul Apparition moved to hug him tightly as her voice became softer and softer.
"Kiran… my son. My good son. Please forgive Mother for leaving you so early in your life… I…"
Her voice faltered here.
How exactly could she apologize to her adult son for being absent almost his whole life? No matter what she said, she could not turn time back and give Kiran the upbringing he deserved.
Instead, he had wasted the prime of his youth and all his latent talent trying to summon a mirage of her to say just one line.
Seeing her son's conviction and his growth made her weak soul feel more solid and stable. It was as if his desire to have her in his life again was what coalesced her into being, allowing her able to exist like this in the material world.
As she cradled the head of her son, Juno felt pride wash over her, as well as an intense feeling of love. She had always loved her son the most, but now she felt like she never wanted to let go of her little baby.
Kiran, the usually stoic and emotionless person in any group, was smiling like a little boy who had been given a treat. Despite knowing he was hugging a semi-corporeal apparition, he leaned into her embrace.
"I've missed you so much, Mom."
Even his voice sounded like it had aged backwards a few years as if a normal little boy had sealed away his words and wishes, waiting for the day he could share them with his beloved mother.
Juno felt hotness roll down her cheeks, a feeling which startled her as she felt her body become more and more solid by the second.
When she looked down a her son, she jumped out of his embrace with an expression of fear.
Kiran's lips had become blue and his skin paled to dangerous degrees, the vitality and liveliness in his youthful body being drained away by a great margin.
Juno was terrified to know that her son's obsession for her was so great that he almost swapped his life for hers. Juno finally understood that her existence was everything that her son held dear in this life and nothing surpassed it.
This fear dissipated as her expression cooled down into a calm gaze. At this moment, she looked no different from Kiran when he was around others.
"Kiran, you cannot ever do that again. Mother wants to be with you just as much as you want to be with me, but I cannot and will not sacrifice you. Otherwise, what would be the point of me living?"
Juno's voice was firm and brooked no disagreement, to which Kiran could only smile ruefully.
Juno's expression lightened a lot as she looked around the Pagoda.
"Ah, we are on the first floor of the Heaven's Pagoda? It has been a long time since I've been here…"
Juno smiled wistfully as she recalled her life as a member of this clan… this Lineage.
Juno had been a young and beautiful girl who was extremely talented as her bloodline potency was a whopping 30%!
To the average Lineage member, that was a mind-boggling amount that made one equivalent to a prodigy. Not everyone could be like Draco or Eva who were almost literal reincarnations of their Progenitors.
Juno had been trained with the utmost care and importance, developing a cold and indifferent personality as she grew tired of all the stifling regulations and training she was made to endure.
Her heart was like ice to her own father, who was the then Clan Head and was now the current Ancient Elder.
Juno was next in line to inherit the position of clan head for their Lineage, but she had been uninterested in such a position, rather wanting to actually live her life like a normal person for once.
As such, she used the excuse of a training mission to escape her clan. The clan elders would never have suspected the usually silent and obedient Juno would pull such a trick, and they chased after her with utmost fervor.
Juno was significantly stronger than her father, the Clan Head, in terms of bloodline strength. How could any of them hope to capture or slow her advance?
At the age of 23, Juno was finally free to live her life. In the year 2040, Juno entered society as a random person, with not a single cent to her name.
She took on many jobs and professions over the years, experiencing the life of an average person and experiencing all its flavors. It wasn't until she happened to stop by a certain country with an extremely bright and long history that her life change for good.
There, she had met a man with the most beautiful golden hair and hazel eyes that seemed to radiate confidence and magic. Juno, who had hardly found anyone exemplary in her travels, found him extremely enchanting.
The man she was interested in was even more enthralled in her. They had fallen hopelessly in love with each other and had lain together.
When Kiran had been conceived, the fellow had laughed for three days nonstop and the neighbors could barely sleep after he kept shouting "Good! Good! Hahaha! Good!' at the most random of moments.
However, such good times were not meant to last. Juno was still being chased by her Lineage after all, and she had made the mistake of settling in one place for too long.
On March 13th, 2044, on Kiran's second birthday, his quiet home was destroyed by the enraged Clan Head and elders who could not believe that their prodigy had lain with some random fellow.
The father of Kiran was almost killed in a fit of rage by the Clan Head, but Juno stopped him with all her might, injuring both of them in the process.
Seeing his daughter so adamant in protecting her son and her soulmate, the old Clan Head felt all his energy ebb away as his plans for the future disappeared like smoke in the wind.
The chance for his middle Lineage to rise above the rest was gone, and he was left with a rebellious daughter and an illegitimate grandson.
What they never expected though, was that the fellow who was the father of Kiran was from another middle Lineage, and his own circumstances were similar to Juno's.
When his own family appeared due to the commotion, it was the same reaction from a different vantage point. They attacked out of rage, angered that their prodigy had birthed a child with some random woman, she was the main source of their fury.
They certainly recognized the Clan Head and Elders of Juno's lineage and probably recognized Juno herself, but they did not care at this moment.
The reason why both sides had been so angry was not the fact that they had lain together, but due to the fact that it had been the first time for either side, meaning their Vital Yang/Yin had been wasted on a hybrid child.
Hybrid children from two different Lineages were many times weaker than a pureblood child from one Lineage, further fueling their fury.
Having already sustained an injury, Juno was barely able to defend herself from the surprise attack, especially since this new party came at a very bad time.
The majority of the damage was absorbed by her partner, but the little that hit her was able to send her into the deep end. Due to her vulnerability and the viciousness of the attack.
As both parties entered into a serious brawl and the battle even caused various disasters to occur, Juno lay with her two-year-old son in her arms, who could not even understand what was going on.
"My son… My Kiran… I'm sorry. Mommy is going to have to sleep for along time… I can only… leave you… something special… so you… remember…me…"
Juno's body began to lose its vitality as a small golden bead emerged from her chest, slowly entering that of her son. Her baby boy felt his mother's aura so close to him and began laughing with happiness, oblivious to the truth of the scenario.
His father rushed and grabbed him, bringing him into his arms.
"Juno! Hey, Juno! Wake up!"
He checked Juno's wrist, his heart sinking to his stomach when he felt her pulse disappear.
His eyes became red as his breathing became rough, which made young Kiran feel worried and fearful. As such, he began to sob a little, which woke his father from his rage.
He took a deep breath and calmed his emotions.
"This is the truth of being a member of these stupid Lineages. Our lives are quantified by this useless metric called bloodline and everything we do has to revolve around it."
His face became grim as he rose to his feet. rushing to leave the area.
"I'll be damned if I allow our son to go live such a wasteful life."
Firming his resolve, the father of Kiran, who was called Walter, rushed out of the battlefield that was formerly their little home, aiming to find a place where he could raise his son in peace.
However, his efforts were futile, as both Lineages took notice of him.
Since Walter's Lineage had some slight superiority in the battle due to Juno's father being injured, they were able to break off and capture him with their sheer numbers.
His son was taken from him and tossed over to the Lineage of Juno like garbage. They sealed their own prodigy with the various means of their bloodline and took him away, ignoring the rage and will to battle from Juno's lineage.
Like beaten dogs, they could only leave with Kiran and raise him in their Lineage.
No one knew what happened to Walter after being taken away.
Juno sighed as she recalled this. Since her Sarira had been fresh when she put it in her son, it had merged with his budding Sarira and gained some life, allowing her to see this.
Eventually, she had to slumber to maintain her consciousness. However, she began to feel external strength powering up her existence every day for more than ten years.
Eventually, she had awoken to see her adult son, who looked so much like her dear Walter and herself as well.
Juno began to dissolve into their Sarira as she closed her eyes with a gratified smile.
"I shall be watching you from now on my son. Live your life as you please and bring joy to your days."
Kiran watched her disappear with a serious expression.
He called the Sarira back into his body, but he knew for a fact that his mother's consciousness was semi-active and stable for now.
"Live my life as I please…"
Kiran sighed and looked up.
He had tenaciously spent more than 10 years of his life trying to revive his mother's soul, and he had succeeded. He had expected to feel empty and lost, as most people described what it felt like to accomplish a big goal with no subsequent objective planned.
Kiran realized that his excitement and satisfaction were growing ever stronger.
More than ever so before, he wanted to do something other than sitting here and wasting his time in this useless monument to his clan's worship to an absent deity.
Kiran rose from the tatami mat and turned to leave the Heaven's Pagoda.
Now that his mother's soul had been semi-revived, he had another goal.
He would spend his time with his new friends and mentor, in the wonderful game called Boundless.