Mine – A Lucien Hawke Story – is a 3-part short story that is being published as a part of the Guest Blogging for Confessions of a Writeaholic.
The clock ticked slowly. Gabe tapped his pen on his desk. The scrawny teen stared at the clock impatiently. He tried to will time faster even though he knew it to be futile.
Gabe glanced around. Everyone was intensely focused on their tests. He ran a hand through his dark hair and looked down at his own test. Only one question had been answered. Gabe bit his lower lip. He couldn’t concentrate. His mind was running wild with every sort of thing but what he needed. It was an annoying consequence of anxiety.
A shiver crept up Gabe’s spine. The feeling of eyes burning into his back was prominent. His eyes wandered around. Gabe glanced over his shoulder.
The class rebel was staring at him. He had a mischievous smile on his lips. He gave an acknowledging nod to Gabe. The rebel put his feet on top of his desk. Gabe frowned. Walter Rock was known to get what he wanted. He was a bully.
“Walter! Eyes on your own paper!” The teacher smacked his book onto the surface of his own desk. “And get your boots off my desk.”
All eyes turned to look at Walter. Walter scoffed but did as told. The class returned their attention to their tests, all except for the goth girl sitting two seats over from Gabe. Her gaze focused on him.
Gabe lowered his eyes to his own paper and prayed he didn’t look as flustered as he now felt. He answered the next question, stared at it, and erased it. Gabe could still feel Walter and the goth girl staring at him.
When the bell finally rang, Gabe turned in his incomplete test and bolted for the door. Whatever Walter had planned for him, it wouldn’t be good.
Gabe hurried to his locker. His fingers stumbled while he entered the combination.
“Gabriel, my old friend.”
Gabe jumped. He held his chest as if it could still his racing heart. “Walter…”
Walter leaned against the locker next to Gabe’s. “You left in such a rush. I was hoping to talk to you.”
“And I was hoping to avoid you.”
“That’s rude, Gabe. Come on, we’ve got history together.”
Gabe faced Walter. “Nah. Pretty sure you aren’t in my history class.”
“Look who grew up to be a smart-ass. I’m proud of you.”
“What do you want, Walter?”
Walter crossed his arms. “Your help.”
Gabe stifled a laugh. “My help? We’re not friends anymore. Why would I help you?”
Walter wrapped his arm around Gabe. He squeezed just enough to make a point that he will get physical if needed. “Look, just meet me here tonight at midnight.”
“And if I refuse? Which is exactly what I’m going to do, by the way.”
Without breaking eye-contact, Walter grabbed one of the kids passing by. He slammed the kid into the lockers with one hand. “Then I’m going to make you my special little project out of all the guys I torment.”
“I’m terrified. You know I could just tell someone about your little plan.”
“Mr. Head-in-the-clouds? The loner?” Walter grinned. “You live in your own little world, Gabe. You have no friends. No one cares about you.”
Gabe’s gaze fell. Walter belted into laughter. He walked off, leaving Gabe to dwell in his frustrations. “Ass.”
Gabe put his hands into his pockets. He watched passing students joke and horse around with their friends. Gabe’s eyes fell to the floor. He pulled his hood up. Walter was definitely right about one thing. He was a loner. A melancholic sigh passed through his lips as he made his way through the crowded halls.
An eerie quiet loomed within the school halls. It was an unusually windy night for the end of summer. Gabe tried rubbing the goosebumps off his arm. The empty school was unsettling. Broken lockers creaked with each swing. Wind whistled. Shadows danced.
Gabe tried shaking off his nerves. “Why am I doing this?”
Another wave of wind picked up. The windows rattled. Gabe jumped. He took a steadying breath. He moved down the hall. His heart beat furiously against his chest.
Gabe froze. His heart jumped to his throat. Something lay ahead. His hands trembled.
He took a step forward. What am I doing, he thought. Why am I going toward it? Still, he continued on. “God, I’m one of those fools who dies in a horror movie.”
A locker door was being slammed against another by the wind. Gabe took a breath of relief. As he got closer, he heard something squeak. He turned to see the classroom door slowly open. Something grabbed his ankle and pulled. He tried to grab onto one of the locks while he fell. His hand slipped. He was pulled into the classroom. Gabe screamed until he realized it was Walter.
“Hahahah! You loser! You got scared!” Walter was laying on the floor inside. He let go of Gabe’s ankle and jumped to his feet. “Still the same scaredy-cat you always were.”
“Fuck you, man!” Gabe held his chest. “That wasn’t cool!”
Walter wiped away a tear. He had trouble trying to catch his breath. When he finally found enough air to satisfy his lungs, he stood straight. “Whatever. Glad you made it. I actually thought you wouldn’t.” The was slight acceptance in the smile he gave.
Gabe frowned. “I admit I was a bit curious. And I had nothing better to do anyway.”
Walter grinned. “Awww, did you want to try being friends again?”
“No. Why would I be friends with a bully?”
“You can be one of my henchmen . I have a soft spot for you. You’re like a good pet.”
“Shut up… Wally.”
Walter’s smile faded. “You know I hate that nickname.”
Gabe got up. “Oh, did you” Oops.” Pain shot up his hand. He looked down at his palm. A shallow cut extended from his index to the middle of his hand. Blood trickled down his wrist. “Shit, man. Your stupid prank cut me.”
“Whatever. Come on.” Walter started walking down the hall.
“Thanks for the concern.” Gabe closed his hand and held it close to his chest. “What are we doing here, Walter?”
“We’re going to perform a little spell.”
Gabe stopped. “What?”
Walter grabbed Gabe’s arm and dragged him down the hall. “You heard me right.”
“I don’t know if that’s something we should be messing with, Walt.”
Walter slowed. “You haven’t called me that in a long time.” He looked back at him. “Listen, I don’t know if this will work, but I have to try.”
Gabe raised an eyebrow. “I don’t get what it is you’re trying to do.” His hand stung. “I should wrap this up.”
“Leave it. The spell requires a drop of blood anyway.”
“Not liking this idea even more.”
Walter dragged Gabe down into the basement. “Look, I really need your help with this. It’s a two-persontwo person job… and you’re the only one I trust to help me with this.”
“Oh really? Is it because I have no friends?”
“You know why.” Walter stopped at a large sigil drawn on the ground. The area was surrounded by dozens of lit candles. “Despite no longer being friends, you know me the best. We know each other’s history.” Walter met Gabe’s eyes. “We’re two of a kind.”
“I dunno about that. Kinda think you’re a punk while I’m not.”
Walter punched Gabe’s shoulder. “I’m serious, Gabe.”
Gabe sighed. “Yeah… I get it.”
“Please. Help me with this.”
“… What is the spell for?”
“I found a spell that will keep people from leaving.” Walter sat beside the sigil. He picked up a two-sided blade and a black candle. “I found a way to protect our hearts.”
Gabe shook his head. “You know that is all bull.”
“Even still, I want to believe.”
“What if this spell does work? Keeping people against their will is wrong.”
“And what of the pain they cause when they leave? What about the void left when they walk out of the house and leave you with a demon of a father?!”
Gabe sighed. He could still vividly remember the bruises over Walter’s body soon after his mom left. “Not everyone is like your mom, Walt. Or your dad.”
“No. Sometimes, they’re like yours. Dead. Leaving you here in this painful and depressing world to fend for yourself.”
“That’s not fair.”
“Exactly. ‘People always leave’, isn’t that your saying? But if this works, even people meant to die wont.”
A moment of silence passed between them. “Okay. What do I do?”
“Sit across from me and take this candle. Hold it with your bloodied hand so you are giving it direct access to your energy or something like that. It’s supposed to keep me grounded as I perform the spell.” Walter held out the black candle and a lighter. “When I say, light it.”
Gabe reached for them. A drop of his blood fell onto the sigil.
Walter held the two-sided blade to his hand. He made a small slit. “Ready?”
“Too bad.” Walter closed his eyes. He held up his hands. Walter took five deep breaths. He began his chant.
Spirits around me, hear my plea.
Save this heart from those who part.
Bring to me that which I seek
Bring to me that which I speak.
No longer shall they leave
that I wish this eve.
No longer shall I cry,
my reason for this try.
Gabe tensed. A low howl echoed throughout the basement. A small subtle wind suddenly filled. “…Walt…?”
I summon thee
I bind to me
So mote it be!
Walther held out his hand over the sigil. A few drops of blood fell onto the lines. “Now, Gabe! Light the candle!”
Gabe flicked the lighter. He held the flame to the wick until it doubled in size. A strong wind rose from the sigil and blew out all of the candles except for the black candle in his hand. Gabe’s heart was beating faster than it ever had before. He was terrified. It took all of his strength and courage to keep from trembling and keep the candle steady. It was their only source of light now.
“Did it work?” Gabe asked.
“How should I know?”
All sounds vanished. An eerie quiet held the room. Gabe looked down at the sigil. A teen-aged boy with long black hair and pure black eyes peeked out from the center. He smiled, showing razor-sharp teeth. “Hello.”
Gabe and Walter screamed. They scrambled to their feet. And raced out of the basement. “What the hell was that?!’
“Just keep running!”
The boys stumbled out through the school’s entrance. They stopped at the street and looked back. The school remained still and quiet. Nothing followed them.
“Was that real?” Gabe looked at Walter. “That was too freaky to be real. It was another of your pranks, right?”
Walter shook his head. “I don’t know what that was.”
“I’m going home. We shouldn’t have messed with something we didn’t understand.”
“Yeah, yeah.” Walter didn’t take his eyes off the school. “Don’t tell anyone about this. We could get in huge trouble.”
Gabe laughed hysterically. “No kidding? I didn’t know that!”
Walter grabbed Gabe by his shirt. “I’m not joking, Gabe. I’m not just talking about breaking and entering. I’m talking about no one believing us about seeing some kind of monster and we end up in the loony bin.”
Gabe bit his lower lip. “Right… well… whatever. I’m going home now.” He started to walk down the street.
Gabe looked back. “What?”
“Thanks. Even if it didn’t work… thanks for helping me try.”
“Yeah, man… we’re friends.” Gabe turned and walked.
Gabe crept into his room through the window. His heart still beat hard against his chest. He couldn’t get the horrifying face out of mind. No matter how many times he tried to calm himself, his anxiety remained strong. He swore he had been followed. But he was home now. He locked his window and dragged himself to the bathroom.
For five minutes, Gabe let running water wash away the dried blood on his hand. A small flow dripped into the sink but he didn’t care. Gabe stared at his reflection in the mirror. “What did you do tonight, Gabe?”
He sighed. Gabe bandaged his hand and turned off the running water. He made his way to his bed and sat on the mattress. He thought of the face in the sigil again. He shivered. He started unlacing his shoes when he saw a trickle of blood slither from under the bed. Gabe jumped onto the bed. “What Waht the hell?!”
The blood retreated back under. Gabe hyperventilated. Something’s under the bed. That monster DID follow me home. His trembling hand reached for the edge of the sheet.
Gabe pulled the sheet up and peeked under. Nothing. With a sigh of relief, Gabe plopped onto his bed. He kicked his shoes off and stared at the ceiling. He was going insane. He felt like a child again, afraid of a monster under the bed was going to drag him under.
He closed his eyes. He had to calm down. The more he dwelled on his fear, the more paranoid he would become. Gabe concentrated on his breathing. He took deep breaths to slow his racing heart. Ten breaths to settle the heart. He could feel his heart slow and the blood coursing through. In moments, Gabe drifted off to sleep.
The monster from the ritual stood in the center of a velvety blackness. He assumed the form of a young teen boy, but Gabe knew he wasn’t. His long dark hair fell gently to his bare shoulders. He was strikingly handsome. So much so that Gabe felt ugly in comparison. The monster extended a welcoming hand to Gabe.
Every instinct told his body to run but Gabe couldn’t help but walk forward. Something compelled him to get closer. Gabe eyed a devil’s tail sway side-to-side. Even this pleasing form couldn’t hide the monstrosity of this being. Every fiber of Gabe’s being screamed danger. Still, Gabe was drawn to the boy’s dark eyes.
“We are friends now.”
“Wh-who are you?”
The teen boy smiled. Razor-sharp teeth flashed. Four black wings like a bat’s extended from the monster’s back. “Kaither, but you must call me Kai. No one else is allowed to know my name.”