The Beast And The Blessed
The steady, low beeping of the monitor was still far too loud, just as it always was. I knew the healers
were tracking her stats from inside the infirmary, but I couldn’t help but look over the numbers on the
screen myself, just as I had done a few minutes prior.
She was alive, but I wasn’t sure that she would want to be. She had done everything she could to
remove herself from this world, and yet we were going against her last request and forcing her to stay
on this Earth instead of being with her mate and lost child.
I had killed more than I would even be able to count in my lifetime. I had shown mercy to people I had
barely met. But my mother would continue to suffer in the realm of the living because I was too much of
a chicken to free her.
The sheen to my mother’s hair was even duller than before, and I couldn’t help but run my hand over it,
hoping that one day she would turn her head and press her cheek into my hand.
Our relationship was awful when she was alive. I was constantly scared of what she would do and how
she would react to everything. I wanted to stay as far away from my parents as possible.
But then, after my mother had been locked away, and we thought she had been healed, she became
my mom again. She was loving and happy. She seemed to enjoy life and spending time with us.
The day I discovered it was all a ruse to gain her freedom was the day she had finally broken my heart
for good. The last nail had been hammered into the coffin, and I knew that love was a trap as my father
dove for the gun to save her.
Love was used to manipulate and control the other person.
I didn’t want to be like my father, weak and hopeless as he pinned after a woman that didn’t want him.
She was forced to be with him. After she destroyed him, he destroyed her.
Love was the guarantee of mutual destruction. At least, that was what I had thought until I met Natalie.
I dropped my hand down at the lack of movement and grabbed my mother’s cold palm, her fingers
remaining limp in my hold.
“You were wrong,” I whispered as I listened to the machines pumping and swirling away to keep her
alive. “I wasted so much time because of you. My mate deserved better than me, but she stayed. She
was patient while I tried to fix the man that you raised me to be. You failed me. You failed Charlie.”
A small blip on the electrocardiogram made me look up at the screen, but it was quickly washed away
by the normal pattern of her heart beating. Maybe this was it. Maybe she was finally going to let go.
I glance down at the first woman I had ever loved and the first to have ever broken my heart. “I
expected more from you. We deserved more.”
My eyes closed tight as I tried to push back the emotions that were bubbling to the surface. Emotions
that I didn’t have until Natalie came into my life. Before her, they were tucked away in the depths of my
mind, locked in an impenetrable box. But she broke through it, and now I knew I couldn’t put it off
anymore. I had to face my past so I could give her the future that she deserved.
The familiar statement that I had grown to loathe finally made sense.
Charlie had told me the same thing time and time again. She needed her brother, but I had only ever
been her ruler.
She deserved more, Natalie deserved more… and my mother deserved more, no matter how much I
She had been kept alive by machines and wires for far too long, and it was time for her to find peace.
The child I once was, was screaming from the back of my mind. Begging for me to step away and leave
his mom alone. I could hear him shouting at me that I was a monster and that I would never forgive
myself if I went through with it.
I had watched her try to kill herself so many times… too many times.
I had shown mercy to my mate’s mother and had allowed her soul to be returned to the Goddess and
her mate, but the idea of doing the same to my own mother was too much to swallow.
The words tumbled from my mouth before I could stop them. I knew I was stalling, but I did it anyway. I
wanted a mother who would have stayed for me. I wanted a sister who didn’t run from me every
chance she could. I wanted a family that didn’t live off of the pain and suffering they could cause each
“I found my mate, and she is the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. She wears your crown well,
and the people love her. You’ve already met her. She came in here not too long ago. I hope you know
that I will treat her better than my father treated you, and it will be a hell of a lot better than you treated
my father. Our kids will be loved and cherished. I hope when you are looking up at us from whatever pit
of Hell you get sent to, you learn a thing or two about what it means to be a family. I would hate to
imagine that after all the suffering you caused, that you would do the same in your next life.” I licked my
lips before pursing them together as I glared down at her.
If I kept reminding myself how much I hated the empty vessel before me, it might make this a bit easier.
It shouldn’t be this hard to make the choice. To let her live and suffer, or to kill her and let her die and
She had suffered for so long, and yet, the bitter man I was wanted her to suffer for a bit longer. I
wanted to make sure that she learned her lesson… but I also didn’t want her to leave me.
Charlie was sure to run again, more than likely to go live in some cave with her mate. If I made the
choice to end our mother’s life, Charlie may never come back.
I clenched my fists as I fought to make my decision. The same decision I had been fighting for years.
Only now, I finally felt ready to do it.
I had Natalie.
Even if Charlie never came home after this, I wouldn’t be alone for once.
I had Natalie.
I loved Natalie, and I would show her how much she was adored. Then I would get to watch as she
grew round with our pups, and we would make our own family. I only prayed to the Goddess that they
would be happy while they were here before they eventually walked out on me too, ready to start their
I nodded to myself as my mind was made up, my hand reaching up to the power button on the first
monitor. I didn’t want her actual blood on my hands, and I didn’t want to hear it as I killed her.
“Goodbye, mom.” My voice broke as I pressed the button, and the beeping stopped. The lack of noise
made my heart beat faster as I moved to the next machine, the one that was giving her oxygen. The
knob connected to the wall seemed small compared to my hand, and I tightened my hold on it as I tried
to convince myself to turn it.
It was the first of many things that would begin to end her life.
My knuckles turned white as I glared at the tube leading from the port in the wall to my mother’s frail
“Killian?” Charlie’s voice made me pause. I released the valve and turned the heart monitor back on
quickly. “What the fuck are you doing?”
The screen turned blue as the name of the manufacturer was displayed on the screen before the
dreadful but comforting rhythm of my mother’s heart filled the room again.
“What the fuck were you just doing?” Charlie said again, this time yelling as she stormed in. ‘ Get away
from her! Get out! Get out!”
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