Updated: Feb 4, 2021
The older man sat down on the table in front of the couch, seemingly content to wait for Jen to process all that had just happened before he continued. Jen looked down at her chest, pulling her shirt open a bit to examine the "thing" on her chest more carefully. Then she thought about everything that had happened in the last few days. Questions upon questions started to pile up.
Finally, Jen said: So what is this thing? Indicating the large tattoo looking mark on her chest. An appropriate place to start is you have been using your head, I see, that is good; yes, indeed, there may be hope for you yet. The Old Man smiled at her with a toothy smile. Jen frowned at him.
The mark is a Seal; to explain this, we must go back to when your grandfather was close to the same age as you are now. On his 18th birthday, the changeling appeared to your grandfather and demanded that he serve him and do his bidding. By now, Jen's eyes were as big as saucers; she had leaned forward and was listening carefully to the story.
The older man continued. You see, the changeling is an ancient and chaos-evil being able to change its form will when it is free. Over the years, many humans and supernatural creatures alike worshiped it as though it was a God. But it is NOT a God, no sir, No God at all. So, to make a long story short, your grandfather evidently was an ancestor of one of the groups that used to worship the changeling. He had decided it was time to recruit servants again and return to the mortal realm. Your grandfather was to be the first. The very first time the changeling appeared to your grandfather happened to be playing that flute. Humm Yes, he did love that flute." The older man trailed off, staring up at the ceiling for a moment. Jen becoming impatient, prodded him. AND?? What happened?
Oh, yes, anyway, The older man continued. The changeling materialized in front of him, and your grandfather instantly knows he wants nothing to do with whatever this was and attacked with the only thing he had at hand, his flute. Just like you did without even thinking, and with that action so many years ago, the flute was infused with more power to harm the changeling. It has been passed down for generations. Your strength, along with all those that came before you, is infused within this flute. The more your family uses the flute and is in contact with it; the more power is stored within it over time. Unknown to your grandfather, his spirit was naturally powerful. Much of his energy was transferred to the flute when he attacked in a raging fit as he did. Once unlocked over time, his strength continued to be infused into the flute.
Jen piped up, but what is this thing on my chest? The older man frowned; Yes, yes, getting to that I am. Once your grandfather had beaten the snot out of the changeling with the flute and knowing that the changeling would probably come back and who knows what evil plan it would come up with to punish him, he set out to find a way to stop the changeling permanently. After much research and speaking with many people. Your grandfather concluded that the only way he would be able to control the changeling for sure was to create a seal on himself, using his own body as a prison. Sealing the changeling inside of him, so it could not harm anyone else anymore. The older man paused to take a breath.
Jen leaned in, waiting for him to continue. Picking up where he left off after a moment, the older man said, you see, he suspected it had. Been behind all the deaths and bad things that were happening around where he lived. With only a couple of hours of preparation, your grandfather had created the seal. The next time the changeling appeared, he said the words of sealing. For over a day, your grandfather fought with him until he was defeated and locked away. As time went on, the things that had been happening in town stopped. Life returned to normal as it had been before. So, you see, your grandfather was right. It had been the changeling causing all the chaos in the city. But this seal did come with a price.
Oh God, here we go. Jen interjected. The older man smiled. He found out that the being caused chaos, yes, but it also removed all inhibition. The longer it was in this realm, the more power it gained from time and from all those that worshiped it. With that increasing power, the distance its influence reached. Jen again interrupted, but what does that mean, "removes all inhibition."
The older man said, well, think of it like this. Say you really want to know what it's like to fly. Maybe you want to know what it would be like to jump off a building. With no inhibition, you would do it. Or another example, if you really hated your mother in law and wished she was dead or wished you could kill her, you would kill her.
Do you see where this is going? The older man said. Think of if that was to be released into today's world, with nukes and automatic weapons. Think about if that started affecting us lowly peons, and then think of what would happen if it began to affect people in power like generals and presidents. The world as we know it now would be gone just like that, *Snap* gone in a flash of chaos.
Jen frowned and sat back for a moment; she then said. So what is the point of all that? Is it just evil? Does it just like to kill and destroy?
Oh No, said the older man, no, no. There is a point, the more chaos the changeling creates, A whisper here, removal of some inhibition there. He gains power, but it's more than just power. As far as I understand it, it is almost like the chaos he creates is food for him. He feeds on the fear and hatred that is made from the chaos.
But getting back to the seal. As I said, there is always a price to pay. When playing with magic and seals and all that kind of stuff. The seal's strength only lasts tell the 18th birthday of either the granddaughter (You) or grandson of the next generation. So, every other generation will have to re-seal the changeling as your grandfather did by defeating it in battle. If you or whoever fails to win for whatever reason. It will break out of this prison created for it and cause untold chaos like this age hasn't ever seen before. You now know the changeling thrives on chaos and lives to make it. The more confusion, hate, and fear he creates, the more powerful he becomes. This can not ever be allowed to happen again. The world back when your grandfather had to deal with him was much more extensive. But now the world is tiny, so easily can you pop from here to there, and if released, his chaos would spread like wildfire. Burning everything it touched and consuming the entire world in no time at all. So when I say if you fail, everyone dies, I really do mean that.
Jen said nothing. How could this be happening to her? She was not supposed to have to deal with grown-up stuff for a while longer, let alone the fate of the entire world and the human race.
The older man said: You will be 18 tomorrow, correct? Jen nodded then said, so how do I re-seal this thing? Well, said the older man, That is easy as I said, the seal will do what it needs to do; all you need to do is fight him, not give in or be killed in the process. You will have to fight the changeling and win. Jen said sarcastically, Oh, is that all? The older man raised an eyebrow but did not comment; He will come tonight at 12:01 AM. He continued.
Immediately Jen whence thinking of last night and how the changeling had almost crushed the life out of her. With ease, he had virtually killed her if it had not been for the older man. It's either that or you lose and allow him to put you to sleep if that happened, he might not be able to get out of you, but he will wipe your mind once your asleep and use your body as his own vessel tell it has rotted away, the seal is broken and he is released.
Jen was stunned, just thinking about how close she had come to being gone the last time. How could she possibly think of fighting that thing, let alone winning? But it didn't seem like she had much choice at this point; it was coming no matter if she wanted it to or not...
Looking over at Kent and her mom, both were quietly watching the wood floor like it was the most entertaining tv show they had ever watched, unable even to make eye contact with Jen. Jen's mother attempted to hide that she was wiping away, tears pouring down her face. None of their bickering or fighting this time, just silence as they stared at the floor.