|Stop the World
Author: Lady Femme Fatale PM
Her uncle sold her soul for wealth... and as she spends more time with her captor, she realizes that she doesn't exactly want it back anymore.Rated: Fiction M - English - Romance/Drama - Chapters: 35 - Words: 60,219 - Reviews: 659 - Favs: 420 - Follows: 192 - Updated: 06-09-12 - Published: 12-22-09 - Status: Complete - id: 2755301
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Hey everyone! I'm so excited for you to read this story, but there are a few warnings I should probably mention before we kickstart it, okay? First and foremost, the story is rated M for a reason. There will be sex and language and the like, and because I rated it M, I'm not going to warn you ahead of time. I hope that that's okay with you. Secondly, though the relationship between the two main characters is the basis of the story, there is some underlying takes on religion. I don't mean to offend anybody; I'm just playing devil's advocate. (No pun intended.) And also, the devil will be written as a sympathetic character. If any of this bodes unwell with you for any of the above reasons, you will not offend me if you leave. What will offend me is any sort of flame that has to do with what I've warned you about. Finally, the italicized quotes do not belong to me. They belong to Demi Lovato. The songs are Stop the World, Catch Me, and Got Dynamite so please don't sue. As always, reviews are welcome, appreciated, and encouraged, so if you would be so kind to leave your comment, I'd be very grateful. Anyways, I hope you enjoy reading this story as much as I've had with writing it! Thanks again for the consideration, and have a great Tuesday!
"I'm terrified of what you do"
Harleen Campbell walked into the Costa Mesa apartment, a frown etched onto her face as she wiped her hands together. She was dressed in a maroon collared shirt, black slacks, and black shoes – her uniform for her job; Harleen was a box office clerk at the Regal movie theatre located in the Triangle Square shopping center. The apartment she shared with her uncle was located three stories up, so she always had a long trek up and down the stairs whenever she left the apartment and whenever she came back.
Harleen's grey-green eyes locked onto her uncle's lazy figure. Edgar Brown, her mother's brother, was sprawled out on the couch, watching reruns of Judge Hatchett. Harleen sneered in disgust. It was moments like when she missed her parents more than anything in the world. They had passed away together, crossing the street and getting sideswiped by a drunk driver. They didn't stand a chance. Since Harleen was underage, she needed some sort of guardian, and the only option nearby was Edgar, her uncle. At that time, he had had a job and seemed like a good choice, but months after that, he got fired and didn't feel like getting another one.
So Harleen had to get one. She had been working at that movie theatre for two and a half years now. It was March, and Harleen decided she wanted to finish up her senior year on her terms. So two weeks before, she put in her notice and today happened to be her last day. Relief swam over her, but she knew it wouldn't last very long only because she knew she was supporting both she and her uncle. Her paycheck barely managed to pay for the rent and utilities, leaving enough spending money to get Edgar two cartons of cigarettes.
Yes, Harleen's life wasn't exactly a fairytale, but she refused to be the victim, and only her boyfriend and best friend new about her current predicament. She didn't like people knowing her business only because she hated the fact that people might pity her or feel sorry for her. She would simply rather keep everything to herself, and that's what she did.
"How was work?" Edgar asked, tilting his head up so he could look at his niece.
Harleen hid a smirk by pressing her lips together, and silently cleared her throat. She could not wait for this moment, and she took a few minutes to revel in the calm before the storm. "Today was my last day," she said, and though she had tried, she had a smile on her face.
"What?" he yelped and sat straight up, his hazel eyes narrowing at Harleen. "You're kidding, right? You're trying to play a joke on your ol' uncle, right?"
Harleen pressed her lips together once again, but a smile still broke through like the sun breaking through the storm. "No," she said, shaking her head gently. "No. I put in my two weeks' notice two weeks ago. Today is my last day."
Edgar stood up, and he might have been intimidating if he was five inches taller and had muscle mass. Edgar was scrawny and five foot six. He had a full head of chestnut hair, a smooth tan (though now that he was fifty-four, his skin was wrinkled) due to his surfing adventures when he was younger. Edgar could be incredibly charming when he wanted to be, and when Harleen was younger, she admired him for his way with words and for the friends he seemed to make rather easily. But now Harleen saw through to Edgar's manipulating skills to what he really was; a loser. Edgar was a loser, simple as that.
Ever since he got released from his position, Edgar had yet to find another job. Not only that, but every time Harleen asked him why he wouldn't get a job, he would complain that a snowboarding incident which happened four years ago was still bothering him. Harleen thought it was bullshit and told him as much. They clashed all the time, and there were times when Harleen would daydream about a time when she could run away from everything and be on her own.
God, she couldn't wait until she graduated from high school.
"Why would you do that, Harl?" Edgar asked, furrowing his brow so low that it rode over his eyes. "God, sometimes you are so selfish. Please tell me that you are joking. You realize we have to pay rent, don't you? The bills? You are joking aren't you?"
"No Edgar," Harleen said, shaking her head. "I'm not joking. I quit the theatre. I'm not working there anymore. I'm going to have a good rest of my senior year, and I don't want any amount of pressure on me because I'm taking a couple of AP classes and I'm already up to my eyeballs with work and –"
"You think I give a shit about your classes, Harl?" Edgar asked. "What the fuck are we supposed to do now that you have no job?"
"I know what I'm going to do," Harleen told him, crossing her arms over her chest. "I'm going to enjoy the rest of my senior year. I don't know what you're going to do, though I do have a tiny suggestion. Why don't you get off your lazy ass and get a job, hmm?"
"Watch your mouth, young lady," Edgar said dangerously, narrowing his eyes even more. "You watch your mouth when you're talking to me. I am your elder and you will respect me."
"First of all," Harleen said, her voice just as cutting as her uncle's, "you are not my mom or my dad, so you do not get to boss me around and tell me what to do. And secondly, just because you're older than I am doesn't mean I automatically respect you. I only respect people who deserve to be respected and quite frankly, you don't deserve to be respected." With that, she turned around and headed back out the door, deciding to spend the night with one of her friends rather than here. She could borrow Bethany's clothing too because they were roughly the same size anyways.
Edgar dropped his mouth, unsure of what to do, but was most definitely surprised at the gall his niece had. If she had been reacting to anyone else, he would have been proud at the way she stood up for herself. However, she wasn't telling someone else to get off his lazy ass and get a job, she was telling him. And if Edgar hated anything, he hated someone – especially someone younger than he was – telling him what he should and shouldn't do. If he wanted to lie around all day, watching his stories and talk shows, that's what he would be doing. Hell, his collarbone from that snowboarding accident hadn't heeled yet anyways so it wasn't like he didn't want to get a job, but he couldn't.
"I would sell my soul to the devil just to be rich," he muttered, placing his hands on his hips and staring at the door, almost as though he was willing Harleen to come back in, tell him it was all a joke so that everything would be alright.
"Sorry to say, mate, but she's not coming back," an Australian voice said from behind Edgar, causing the smaller man to jump. There was no way somebody could get here save for the front door; they were on the third floor for crying out loud.
Edgar turned and felt his body tense before lifting his hands in defense. "Listen, I don't have anything you want," he said. "Please just leave. I promise I won't say anything." His heart was beating fast, but he hoped beyond hope that this man wouldn't actually take anything because in all honesty, he really didn't have much to his name.
"I don't want anything here," the man said, glancing around as even the notion he would take anything was offensive to him. He looked back over at Edgar and smiled crookedly. "Actually, that's not true. What I want just walked out of this door."
Edgar shook his head with obvious confusion. "I don't understand what you're saying," he murmured.
"Right, of course not," the man said. "Well, I should probably introduce myself. Oh, what do you call me here in America? The devil right? I am the devil, but actually, though no one knows it, I do have a name I like to be called. Andrew. That's what I like to be called."
"Wait, you're telling me you're the devil?" Edgar asked skeptically, arching a brow. Edgar never went to college, didn't exactly know a lot, but he wasn't stupid.
"I'm here to give you what you want," Andrew said, shrugging his shoulders as though it was the most obvious thing in the world. "Wealth, right? You want to be rich. That's what you said, right? I can give it to you."
Edgar swallowed, now less skeptical of the man before him but scared nonetheless. "For my soul?" he asked quietly, now debating whether or not he was actually willing to give up what had belonged to him since even before birth.
Andrew's face contorted into a frown. "No," he said, shaking his head. "I don't want your soul." Another crooked smile touched his lips. "I want your niece's."
For whatever reason, Edgar felt a wave of relief sweep through his body and he felt his body relax. "Done," he said without hesitation.
Andrew reached out his hand and Edgar shook it.
"Done," Andrew agreed, and with a snap of his fingers, he disappeared.