shattered hopes A/N: this is probably the most bizarre thing I have ever written. This story is just the prologue of things to come in the future. So, please review and let me know if you like where it's going or what I should improve. I wrote this awhile back but decided to do some editing. It's not to bad I don't think, a little gory so if you don't like that kind of stuff don't read it as it may offend you. Thank you and I hope you like this short little snippet. I may continue it I'm not sure as this is the first time I ever wrote anything of my own (well, posted any original stories of my own). Enough of that, enjoy. -sky

Disclaimer: none, it's mine (haha)

"Shattered hopes"

Toby's family was normal considering the struggle surrounding them and the occasional bombing from local terrorist groups, which sometimes interrupted the rarely seen peaceful days the colony hadn't seen since the 3rd war had started. His father was a computer software engineer, and his mother was a schoolteacher. His family always seemed happy,at least around him, so he was always in high spirits. He was only 10, so he didn't understand why his mother sometimes came home and gave him those teary eyed hugs or why sometimes his father would stare at him as if he'd never see his son again. He just thought they were to overly protective of him, that's how parents were right? Sometimes though he would wonder why his mother sometimes cried herself to sleep at night, and why his father sometimes looked as though he'd just stared death in the face and lived.

What Toby would never know was that his father had created a new form of chip that would allow the defenders to mentally link themselves with their combat machines so that all that was necessary to move them was a thought. This in turn would allow the pilots to react quicker to any battle situation. Yes, it was a good idea the problem was that his father thought that by selling only small tidbits of information to both the defenders and the trackers he would be the one coming out on top. He was a fool. Because of his greed for money and want of a better position he heedlessly placed his life and the lives of his family in the sometimes-cruel hand that is fate.

Toby was always a calm and collected child, even his mother had a hard time trying to make him open up, he was always so quiet that sometimes it caused her to worry, but that didn't matter anymore, not now anyways.

He came home from school one day and saw that the door was wide open with smears and splatters of red dripping from the floor inside. He did not scream in terror nor did he runaway. Instead he continued walking through his home, a look of unnerving calmness etched onto his pallid face, tears were threatening to fall from his huge forest green eyes. To say he was in shock would be an understatement, but he somehow found the will to keep going. So, when he found his father strapped to a chair blood flowing from the gaping hole in his head, he just stared with blank eyes, his body felt cold his legs felt like there were weights strapped to them as he made his way towards his father (there is a limit to how much pain a person's heart can take they say once you pass the threshold you just sort of black out and lose that tenuous grip on reality).

Toby walked up to his father not even registering that the wall behind where his father sat was now a mural of red death dripping onto the bedroom floor. A salty tear made its way down his face and dripped onto his father's lifeless face, " hi dad, how was work today? I was hoping if later you could help me with that science project I told you about, if you're not busy, ok? I'm going to go say hi to mom ok? Dad, I.. I you.. I'm going to go see her now. I'll be right back." His heart was breaking and would soon be lost at what he saw next.

He slowly made his way to the back of the house near the kitchen paying little attention to the streaks of crimson across the floor where it had appeared someone had been dragged. He swallowed painfully as he tried unsuccessfully to speak but finding his voice was leaving him as all he could manage was a broken whisper, "mom, you there?" he felt a large pain in his chest at what he saw but he refused to see the battered mass before him.

Across the floor near an upturned chair was a bruised and beaten soul so physically tortured that she was only recognizable by the remnants of her dress. At seeing this his heart had gone cold. Tears streamed down from puffy red-rimmed eyes. His next words came in a hoarse whisper, "there you are, how are you?" he kneeled down next to her and cradled her head in his lap. He didn't see the missing teeth or the broken nose or the clumps of hair missing from her scalp, no, he just saw an angel sleeping soundly if not peacefully. After awhile he noticed how cold her body was, " you're so cold, here let me get you warm or you'll catch cold." He removed his coat and laid it across her lifeless form. "Hey mom, why so quiet huh? You're always saying how I don't talk enough. Well, I am now so why don't you say something? He placed her clammy hand to his cheek,flashes of memories hit him full force, and for the first time since coming home that day he saw everything, "mom, please.. please, wake up, say something.. please. You're so cold you have to get up or you'll get sick." He tried picking her up but ended up slipping in the slick gore that was pooling around her. " Please get up, dad would get mad at me if I let you lay on the ground like that." With that said pictures of his father strapped to the chair came to his mind unbidden, "NNOO, please no.. no." he lay there silently and began to rock back and forth sobbing now uncontrollably body racked with grief shaking with sorrow.

He must have fallen asleep because he awoke still living in his nightmare. His mother was still lying there lifeless in his lap.

(Flashback to the night before)

His mother: "Toby, can you come here for a moment please?"

Toby: "Yes, mom what is it?"

Mom: "Here I want you to take this and hold onto it for me, ok?"

Toby: "What is it?"

Mom: "Please just hold onto it. Think of it as something to remember me with when I'm not here with you.

Toby: "Why, are you going somewhere?"

Mom: "I'm not sure yet honey, but if I do just remember that I love you dearly no matter what."

Toby: "If you are going somewhere will you bring me something back?"

Mom: (tears threatened to fall at that) "come here Toby give me a hug."

Toby: (realizes his mother is crying) "mom, I'm sorry you don't have to bring me anything, I was just kidding, please don't cry. I love you to."

Mom: (cries harder at those words, realizing she must be scaring him she attempts to control herself) "I'm sorry honey, I wasn't crying about that, its just that if I do go somewhere I'm going to miss you."

Toby: "Don't worry I'll always be here (places his hand over her heart) and here (points to her head smiling now that she had stopped crying)."

Mom: "you're so sweet Toby don't you ever change."

Toby: (smiles broadly) I won't

(End flashback)

He got up slowly and took one last look at his mother wiping his eyes he whispers to her, " I love you to mom." Walking out the door not caring that people on the streets were beginning to give him nervous glances seeing as he was covered in blood. An old couple walking by commented "kids today they think everyday is Halloween, I'm surprised they don't give themselves nightmares with those getups." Unknown by anyone someone had been watching the child someone had known about his fathers work and knew what this child carried with him could would mean the end or a new beginning.

~to be continued?~

A/N: I really don't know where to go with this. I'm a fantasy lover and I originally planned to include a few of my favorite beings (dragons of course) I did write something similar that would fit this story quite nicely, but please let me know if this is worth the effort. Thank you -sky