There is a saying that for every beginning there is also an end, but this is not always the case.
At least not for Lang Lei, who was born as the 2nd son of a successful business entrepreneur. Lang was born with a gift, since the age of three he was able to remember everything he saw and learn from it, he could recite books he only read once word for word and paint perfect pictures of his memories. This was however, not only a blessing but also a curse. Thanks to this gift Lang would be considered a genius, but because of this he would walk a lonely path, being the only one at his age with an intellect such as his.
Ever since then, he had immersed himself in gaining knowledge. He did this for no real reason, but purely out of curiosity. From an early age, Lang had always been a “the pen is mightier than the sword”-type of person, he did not see the point of violence and the only reason he learned military tactics was because they tied in with history. There was also the fact that his father had always taught him to be kind to others and to always help those in need, thus enforced his beliefs. But all of these beliefs would, on one fateful day, prove to be misguided. For nothing is clad in black and white.
It started out like any other day, Lang was getting ready for school, today was the first day of the new school year. Instead of going to university where he belonged, his parents had made him enroll with the rest of the kids his own age in the hopes that he would be able to make some friends.
Lang was now 12 years old and was known around the world as a prodigy who possessed vast knowledge in science, art, history and even other more obscure subjects such as military tactics.
He had gone to school, as always, even though it did not offer him any knowledge that he did not already know. He would go to school and just sit there for hours to learn about things that he had known about for years. All due to his parents hopes of giving him a normal childhood. And after an uneventful day at school, he would go home. His teachers and classmates paid him no mind. Lang had always been alone, normal students and teachers just couldn’t relate to him, not that they tried to.
To his surprise, there was a man whom he did not know, sitting in his kitchen when Lang got home today. He learned that his father had let the man into their home because the man was laying in front of their house, injured. The man wore plain clothing, and there was a faint smell of blood coming off from him, most likely from his injury.
The man claimed that a passing car hit him, but that he was ok and would be alright with a bit of rest.
There was not anything out of the ordinary with the man, but Lang thought that something was off about him. But he ignored his gut feeling and left for his room.
His father had offered the man to stay for dinner or if the man needed, he would drive him to the hospital. To which the man declined and asked to simply be allowed to rest on the sofa for a bit.
Before dinner, everyone in Lang’s family tried to strike up a conversation with the man, they had asked him what he did for a living, to which he simply replied “I help send people to a better place.”
After a light dinner, Lang headed to his room to read a book and get some sleep early. His father led the man to the door and said his goodbyes, while everyone else went to bed.
Lang hopped onto his bed, and opened a book to read before going to sleep like usual, today he had picked a book about religion, mainly focusing on reincarnation. This particular topic was mentioned in school today and Lang had never really thought about it before, so he figured he would give it a read.
But in the middle of the night, Lang heard a scream. It was obviously odd to hear a gut wrenching scream in the middle of the night so he put down his book and left his room to investigate.
Any regular teen would have simply ignored the scream or ran to their parents, but not Lang. He had always been the independent type, who didn’t ask for help unless he absolutely needed it.
Eerie red moonlight shone on him as he walked down the stairs and a flash of light caught his attention. It was the moonlight reflecting off a bloody knife. Lang had stumbled onto the bloody scene of the man, whom his father had let into their home, stabbing his father.
Lang panicked, he realized that this man was the serial killer that they were talking about on the news this morning, the one that had killed nine people.
He tried to run to the phone to call for help, but instead stumbled to the ground. As he tried to get up the man had noticed him and came running.
He saw the limp body of his older brother lying in the kitchen staring at him, with empty lifeless eyes, still holding an empty plastic cup in his hand. Lang had stumbled due to his brother’s leg.
A sharp pain was felt on his back. Lang realized that the man had stabbed him and that he would most likely die.
Lang’s mother had heard all the commotion and came running down from the 2nd floor of their home. To her horror both of her sons and husband were laying on the floor. She let out a miserable scream, but it soon stopped and was replaced by the mad laughter of the man.
Lang heard him laughed as he proceeded to slowly walk past Lang holding his blood-stained knife, then ran towards Lang’s mother.
Lang’s life flashed in front of his eyes.
Lang began to question himself, why was it that he had to die, why was it that this was happening to him. At that moment, in a flash, he realized that so far he lived an empty life, he had done nothing but gather knowledge and live by that ridiculously black and white philosophy his father had ingrained into him.
Lang screamed in his mind ”WHY?!! Why did this have to happened?!!”.
While staring blankly at his father’s bloody corpse, if he had not let this man into their home none of this would’ve happened. Lang’s mother would still be alive, his brother would also be alive and Lang himself would not have to die.
The sharp pain from his back, the sight of his dead family members further pushed Lang into despair and hatred, hatred for their killer but also for his own powerlessness.
At that moment Lang swore that if he were to survive this ordeal he would not live like he had before. He would live a different life, a life for himself and no one else, because he had nothing to blame but his lack of power and his family's misplaced trust in other people.
Lang took his last breath and his vision blurred out. He believed that this was the end and his life had ended without him truly even living it. Thus he swore that if there was indeed a next life, he would obtain power, power to rule over others, power to shake even the heavens. And so this marked the end of his life, but for some, the end is only the beginning.