I draw the veil down low over my eyes, gasping as I run under the cover of night. Nothing matters. Not any more, except the small bundle of warmth in my arms. I have vowed to protect the child, the one who will bring salvation to my kind.

I pity her. It was futile to attempt to salvage such an ancient and corrupt race. This is why I run, blood seeping from my thigh, where an arrow barely missed its mark. I've not long for this world, but my last act will be just and honourable. I must lift the burden from her tiny shoulders and set her free.

She will live and we will die, but the balance of nature shall now maintain its equilibrium and the innocents will no longer shed their blood.

I reached the outskirts of a small village, magic hums in its very foundation. She will be safe here, where our kind can not enter if they wish to live long. I lay her down on a door step and pray she will find happiness. And now I must leave; lure the hunter away from here.

I retrace my steps back to the forest and lay waiting at the base of a mighty oak, hoping that it will lend me its strength in my final hours.

The sands of time slip through my fingers despite my frantic efforts to hold it still. A shadowy figure emerges from the tree line; moonlight glinting off his merciless dragger. I set my face in a mask of indifference, my final act of defiance. My thoughts linger on the child as the hunter advances. I have fulfilled my vow to the best of my ability and as the blade plunged into my chest, I knew this was not the end.

_,∙~* All But Faceless *~∙,_

This was the short story I submitted with my SpineBreakers application and am proud to say that I succeeded