Now that my mom has stopped screaming.
Mom isn't dead. And Dad isn't dead. And I'm not crying. And this is just a dream.
They were crouched over her - those men, those things. The Hounds. And they stand up and smile at me, and I can't move... Mom told me to run, but I can't move. I'm frozen.
They're walking toward me - slowly. Their footsteps loud on gravel. I can't even look at them, just look at my mom on the ground, my mom, who isn't getting up...
My breathing is louder, my heartbeat is louder. Mom has to get up. She has to, she has to -
And the Hounds speed up, and one of them leaps for me, and now I can move - I stumble back, press my back against the wall, flinging my arms out in front of me like I can ward them off, screaming "Mommy!"
...and my shield flares, so bright I can see it - and the Hound's open hand bounces off. He snarls, inches from my face, and I slide down the wall, onto my butt, hands thrust out as far as they can go, sobbing, because there are three of them, snarling and vicious and they killed my Mommy and my shield is starting to crackle, to crack, and one of them laughs -