Bindings of Family is one of my better attempts at a dramatic, compelling story. Wildheart was a good try, but extremely long (by my standards) and somewhat focused on fan service in comparison. While Wildheart was about two main characters sort of awkwardly falling for each other even though both of them are over nine thousand years old each (no, not a reference), Bindings is about two main characters awkwardly stumbling through the road blocks life keeps placing in front of them.
The line "My shoulder hurt, but the pain of losing was unbearable" is from a writing practice prompt given by a creative writing teacher I had (and adored) in fourth grade. I always remembered it and the basic gist of the story I wrote along with it, and I've always wanted to include it in a story. It may show up again!
Of course, the weird thing that I keep asking myself "Dear god, why?" about is part 15. Yes, it's strange. Kind of disturbing, as well. But more tests of character like this will follow Tei through the story. As Tei is the innocent and Alli is the "unholy terror," when the world starts to get dark, the innocent will be tested the most. Whether or not Tei retains his innocence is up to the circumstances, his own actions, and the reader's opinions.