Blessed Be

by Tamayo Ginbara

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Blessed be you whom is deserving of freedom. That's what I told myself in regard to the worthy one. His eyes reflected enlightenment and his smile reflected nirvana. In a few moments, I would kill him.

He would be the fifty-fifth I'd killed since the high priest Micritus designated me our community's Liberator, the one whose duty it was to liberate souls from their earthen shells once they had fulfilled their mortal duties. The object of my attention tonight would be the priest Nazrel.

Micritus's kind words about Nazrel poured out onto tonight's audience filling their souls with purest bliss. I watched from my seat beside Micritus. Those dazzling eyes, glazed over with admiration and yearning to be the ones chained down someday. I was like them once, but it was my duty to live on. It was my duty to guide the followers back to the loving arms of their creator.

Fifty-four people have been led back thanks to me. Fifty-four times I had risen from this seat to take the ivory blade. I had plunged it into fifty-four hearts, seen fifty-four smiles of gratitude, watched as fifty-four people received what I would never have. Blessed be you whom is deserving of freedom. The mantra grew bitter in my throat and I gagged.

Every single soul I liberated had been a slap in the face to our teachings. Raising your child to the age of adulthood, curing one's ailment, bringing people together, comforting those who grieveā€¦ all of these I had heard as their sorry excuses for their purpose in life that they had fulfilled. They just wanted to escape their wretched lives.

Micritus finished the prayers and called me forth. I took the ivory blade and cradled it in my hands with great care and kindness for the fifty-fifth time, feeling the silk handle grace my capable hands. I looked to Nazrel, raising the reaper high above him. His eyes lit up gloriously as he waited for the divine blessing. He wouldn't get it. Someone deserved it more.

I cried out in ecstasy, tears of joy streaming down my eyes as the sudden pain filled me and began to subside. My body felt light enough to float away into the night sky. A white mist filled my eyes, purifying and separating my soul from this mortal coil. There was no need for hearing the screams of blasphemy, no need to see the floor closing in as I collapsed, no need to breathe this world's air. Blessed be you whom is deserving of freedom. That's what I told myself in regard to the worthy one.