|The Darkwater Chronicles 3: Hell and Back
Author: TyranicFish PM
Everyone has a dark side. Alex Walker's just happens to be a personified all-knowing book and is all the more evident when Alex suffers from a terrible tragedy. Dark forces ensnare the souls of the people she holds dear, and now she must traverse the deeper, darker corners of the supernatural world in attempts to save them, and perhaps discover her true enemy in the process.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Fantasy - Chapters: 15 - Words: 30,709 - Reviews: 5 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 3 - Updated: 05-12-13 - Published: 03-08-13 - id: 3107123
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Notes: This is the third installment in The Darkwater Chronicles. I recommend reading the first two before this one if you haven't already, that way things, you know, make more sense.
Chapter 1: Winter
The thing about winter is that it's cold. And wet. And does horrors to the skin. And the hair. Sometimes you get snow days, which are fun, but other times you get them on weekends. And can't go anywhere. Winter, in short, fucking sucks.
Back when I was a kid in Eastbridge me and my old friends used to always play in the snow, making forts, snowmen, snow angels, and tunnels which acted as temporary tombs. That was back when winter was cool and magical. Now it's just downright shitty and I can't go into town because the roads are bad. It's Saturday, did I mention that?
Not that I really have anywhere to go. Hannah doesn't like to go out that much, she mostly stays in her room and reads and David...well I haven't talked to him since three months ago, back in October when the gargoyles attacked. That break up sucked, I didn't get to yell at him nearly as much as I should have. And I haven't talked to him since, barely seen him save for the few awkward glances in the hallways. I've made many excuses to just not go to school. "I saved the town" or "Dragged by a large gargoyle." For the most part, they work.
Three months ago, I was kind of an unsung hero. People were all talking about the random attack from the church. No one really saw how it ended, or who ended it, which was lucky. That story has been morphed into something so unrecognizable. Now they're doing a movie. Attack of the Flying Monkeys. Somehow the Wizard of Oz got mixed up in this. Whatever, I don't care. I just want to get back to some semblance of normal. I don't think it's going to happen, though. I haven't seen either Marcus or Faye since then, either, but it's not exactly like we were friends. It's hard to make friends in those kinds of situations, I think.
Anyways, now the world has forgotten our little skirmish and has returned to sucking indefinitely. Darkwater is mostly fixed up. The church needed the most repairs, everything else was considerably minor, aside from our front door exploding. Dad got that fixed. Still hasn't fixed the study window so it's been too cold to go inside. We keep it shut. I imagine snow covering the multitudes of wonderfully old books and Uncle Barney's old desk. It's a depressing, awfully grey sight. But that's just it. I haven't seen it. So lately the only room I get to myself is my bedroom.
Mom and dad are happy as ever now. Their daughter isn't doing anything crazy, and mom is rounding out. Because of the pregnancy. Not because she's fat. She could never be fat. It's some kind of curse in our genes. It's a curse I'm perfectly fine with keeping, but one can't help but wonder when it will just...stop.
I never used to watch the news, but ever since I outgrew cartoons and started watching real T.V I've been out of things to watch on a Saturday. So now I'm watching the news. It's depressing. They usually focus on the bad stuff so automatically you're convinced that the entire world's gone to hell.
"In other news," I picture the reporter saying, "the earth now has syphilis. We're all going to die." I turn off the news before that has a chance of becoming anything close to real. I get up off the couch. We got this T.V for Christmas from my grandparents. It's fucking huge and distracts me from my homework, my parents are really grateful.
I enter the large dining hall from the west wing. That's where we put the T.V. It has a three story high roof and acoustics that don't quit. That huge ass portrait of Edmund Darkwater still hangs over the study door. I hate that. Why should such a douche bag be the gatekeeper of my favourite room in the house? I should commission dad to take it down. And burn it. Or maybe we can use the frame to finally patch up the window.
I walk up to and through the dark hallway. Mom's been getting the Doll Room ready for the baby. I don't like that one bit. I can feel them stare through the keyhole as I walk by.
"Alex!" Fuck! That hiss came from behind the fucking Doll Room door. I stare at it in horror, awaiting the inevitable slow open, porcelain dolls crawling like demonic little fuckers until they reach my feet, tearing apart my socks until they get down to the skin and-
The doorbell rings. Thank fucking God. I leap away from the Doll Room as gracefully as ever, then make my way to the door. I open it. A girl about my height with an emo-ish hair cut and big brown eyes and a marshmallow body is behind it. It takes me a moment to recognize Hannah under all that snow gear.
"What's up, Michelin Man?" I ask.
"Ha ha," she grins in mock laughter. "Come on, we're going out."
I look outside with an exaggerated expression of pain on my face. "Why?"
"Because you've been locked up in this house all weekend, and it's snowing!" she cheers. Oh dear lord.
I stare at her for a moment, searching for the joke. There's no joke. "That's your argument?"
"What, don't you like snow?"
"Yeah, like I like a blow to the head or my heart exploding."
"Come on, I owe you a juice or something," she says.
"How about for saving the town from a fucking gargoyle invasion?" she argues.
"Well...there is that," I say. "Fine, but not juice. Coffee. Tim Horton's. Let's roll." I get bundled up in...well my windbreaker and shoes. I don't like winter gear. I, of course, change my clothes. Can't go out in my pyjamas. Jeans and a sweater should do it, right? When we're walking outside, I can't help but ask, "Did you walk up here?"
"Yeah," she answers.
I turn around. "Fuck that."
She grabs my arm. "Come on," she laughs, turning me back around and walking me out of the first gate. We walk into the garden. The dreaded garden. You know what creepy ass topiary looks like with a sheet of snow on top? Like creepy ass topiary with a sheet of snow on top. There's no improvement, just an added eerie element.
When we get to the bridge guarded by the bushes shaped like horned snakes on either side, I freeze. They're staring at me, yellow leafy eyes glowing...
"Alex?" Hannah nudges me in the side.
The eyes continue to stare, the long necks twisting and turning until...they're on me. Fuck. Fucking hell, I need...I...
"Alex!" Hannah yells. She's grabbed onto my shoulders, shaking me incessantly.
"What, what?!" I snap out of my little trance to find that I'm on the ground. Don't remember making the trip down. "What happened?"
"You just stopped, then sort of fell backwards."
"Huh..." I wipe my eye. There's snow on my poor bare hands. "That's weird."
"Are you feeling alright?" she asks me, helping me up.
"Yeah, fine, just..." I pause, looking back up at the serpent topiary, "just not used to fresh air."
Hannah looks up to where I was looking. At the snakes. With their horns. She looks back at me. "You still want to go out?"
"Sure, yeah, yeah, sure."
"Okay, that's one too many."
"I'm fine, Hannah," I say sternly. "Come on."
She eyes me strangely. How is she still single? She's got to be the prettiest girl I've seen...aside from myself. I've got killer looks. Heh. Yes, I have a large ego. But I think I'm allowed that. Point is, even when eyeing me strangely she manages to look really cute. It's weird. Especially when you consider she's been a parrot on several occasions.
We finally get to a Tim Horton's. It's glorious. It's not the food that I love here. I mean, the food is fantastic and insanely cheap, but there's also the ambiance. You've got people just getting things to go, chatting up with their friends or the kids working part time at the cash, or sitting at one of these nice ass tables eating donuts or bagels...the coffee Hannah got me is warming me up. My ass got cold after falling into the snow randomly. Big surprise. Snow's cold.
"It's incredible," Hannah says, peering around the room from our table by the window.
"What is?" I ask.
"You'd think a bunch of gargoyles didn't even attack the town three months ago."
"What, everyone's just supposed to stop living because something bad happened?" I take another sip.
"Well, no, but it would be nice if there was some recognition of what happened. It's like it never did," Hannah says.
"Do you want to be the big hero, Hannah? Do you want the mayor to give you a medal and the key to this backwater town?" I grin.
Hannah laughs. "It's not like that," she turns back to me and leans on the table. "But I was watching the news yesterday, it was talking about some celebrity divorce and I'm just like...well what the fuck? Gargoyles attacked a fucking town and it doesn't have anyone thinking."
"As Agent K said; 'A person is smart. People are stupid.' They have to stick to what's familiar otherwise they'll go crazy." I take another sip of my coffee. Mmm.
"Agent K?" Hannah asks. Oh...Oh my.
"Men in Black," I tell her. She nods in slow comprehension.
"So how are you doing?" she asks me.
"Well I hate this snow, but over all, fine. How are you doing?" Sip, sip, sip.
"No, I mean with...you know," she says awkwardly. "The breakup."
"You've asked me that every day since it happened," I half smile.
"And you've avoided answering every time," she says...Well I guess she's right. But it's not really a big deal. People break up. It happens.
And that's what I tell her. "People break up, Hannah. It happens."
"How often," she starts, biting into her doughnut...damn I should have gotten one, "does it happen right after you save the day from a horde of angry gargoyles?"
"...Okay, point," I sigh. "But I'm fine. Boys aren't the first thing on my mind right now, anyways."
"That, I can understand," Hannah smiles.
"Even so..." I start playing with the lid of my coffee cup. I get fidgety when...well I don't know what to call this, but yeah. "Have you talked to him?" I ask.
She looks at me with one of those solemn looks. Empathic and shit. "Yeah. I have."
"He's miserable without you," she smiles.
"Oh you're just saying that," I smile back and sip. My stomach drops. I...I think I see someone. I know, impressive in a packed Tim Horton's but...this...Is that? He turns his head and smiles at me. Oh my God...that's Uncle Barney.
"What are you looking at?" Hannah asks, looking where I'm looking. She looks back at me like there's nothing there...and there isn't. Not anymore. He's just...gone.
"Um..." I shake my head, "nothing. Nothing. Can we get out of here?"
"Sure," she nods.
We get up, her with her doughnut and coffee and me just with my coffee. I really should have gotten my own doughnut. We leave the warm interior of the Tim Horton's and return to the dreary cold of the winter wonderflandified Darkwater.
"So where to?" I ask her. She looks at me and shrugs.
"Well where do you want to go?" she asks me back.
I slump, crunching my face a bit as I try to think of something we can do. There's not a hell of a lot to do in this town.
"We could go see a movie," I suggest. "What's playing?"
"Nothing good," she tells me. Boy, right off the top of her head, too. I sigh heavily and we continue to stand outside the Tim Horton's, trying to think of somewhere to go.
"What about your place?" I suggest.
"No," Hannah says quickly.
"Parents fighting again?" I ask. Hannah nods. Her parents have been fighting a lot lately and it makes for awkward visits. "Okay, let's just go sit in the park and feed bread to pigeons," I say, marching us towards the park.
"There are no pigeons here," Hannah says.
"Goddamn it all," I hiss, kicking a chunk of snow onto the road.