Before Cain had met Riff, his world was silent, except for his father's cold and hard voice, which he clung to as a lifeline, even if it rubbed by Cain and left scars and pain. Even the sounds of lashes left by his father, because without it, his world was dead.
Then one day a stranger came to him and spoke to him. He knew this wasn't a dream, because his sleeping world only consisted of silence. His heart beat faster, his hands trying to stretch out to catch the words fading in the air. It was from that time on he learned the word he never admitted to acknowledge: hope.
Hope might be a thing of feathers, but it was too easy to tear its wings open.
Riff stayed. With Riff, Cain's world broke into sound and music. Riff's voice was quiet and contained an emotion alien to him. It felt like a feathery and comfortable blanket over him. At first he struggled, not used to the tenderness and softness, but soon he got used to it. It became a new anchor in his world.
Riff wasn't a man of many words, so Cain treasured the man's each and every word, greedily grabbed them with his ears, in his heart, put them under lock in a place that was still soft enough not to alter the form of the words. Cain was always a curious and quick-learning child, and studying Riff became his hobby, an addiction. He learned to distinguish the tone of voice Riff used when he smiled at and greeted Cain in the morning; the lower, softer, but paradoxically angry (angry from Riff weirdly made Cain feel warm) tone he used when he took care of the wounds on Cain's back. Cain learned the many variations like he studied poison, precisely, carefully and passionately. Perhaps Riff's voice was a form of poison. This was why he felt like he couldn't live without it. Perhaps he should find a method to collect and store it, but he would then leave the chance that someone else would come and own it, and he wouldn't let it happen.
In the early days he knew Riff, Cain liked to hide himself and wait for Riff to find him. Riff could find him everywhere and the concern in his voice made Cain smile. Riff might feel that it was a childish game, but he never showed his impatience. Cain would never tell him that in some way he was trying to teach Riff to instinctively look for him, because then they would never lose each other.
His mother's dying words might be the trigger to release his bond, but Riff's voice already guided him to the path of light.
Cain knew he was greedy. It came from his cursed blood that he had a desire to lock Riff to a world only of them, to let the voice shake because of unrestrained emotion, to let the warm voice slide over Cain's body, but he wasn't his father, who destroyed his love just because of his greed, so he learned to tolerate the fact that there was a wide world that Riff and Cain faced together. Riff 's voice was always trusty and full of care, (yes, Cain finally learned to identify the emotion.) and it helped him to resist the same demon that plagued the family. It was enough that Riff always returned to him, always by his side with his smile and voice.
"Master Cain?" Riff's voice broke Cain out of his quiet thought and brought him back to the rose garden they were in. "It seemed that your hypothesis was right. The mother did bury her daughters here."
Cain said to Riff, "That was why the roses were so red. They fed from the purest of blood."
"Why did she do such a thing?" Riff replied with a questioning voice. Cain sometimes was amazed that Riff still retained some hope of humanity after everything that happened to them.
Cain took Riff's free hand into his and said, "She loved her daughters so much, or she wanted to possess her daughters so much that she would rather let them stay with her forever. This kind of desire's twisted, dark, but bears lovely flowers. Don't you think it’s ironic?"
Even in the night's darkness Cain could see that Riff was shaking his head. "I would never understand this."
I could understand, Cain thought, looking at Riff. With a wrong step he could be a complete monster like his father, but being together with Riff and sensing his warmth made Cain feel stronger, made him want to be better, to deserve this man who brought him out from darkness into light.
That was why he would never let anyone take away Riff, not even Riff himself. He was the salvation to his world. Cain couldn't predict his future, but he was determined that they would leave together. There was nothing worthy for him to stay further in this world without Riff, and he would never let him have a chance to leave his side
Even if Cain knew in himself that he was cursed to be alone at the end, he still wanted to fight his fate and with Riff, Cain found it possible to dare to look for a happy ending.
"It's time to leave now, Master Cain. The night's getting cold." Riff said. Cain nodded, and after they returned to the mansion and Riff took care of him as usual. When he was about to leave, Cain caught his hand and said, "Stay with me."
"Master Cain?" Riff said, but he obeyed Cain's words as he always did, and stayed by the bedside.
The night was getting deeper, and Cain soon fell into the world of dreaming, but he knew that this time it wasn't one of silence and pain. For once he was looking for warmth and a gentle voice there.
It was what Cain wanted in his life, and this was the person he was.