"Will I really ever be free…?" The prisoner murmured, eyeing his cut arms and tattered clothes. He gave a small sigh, turning his head to stare up at the stone ceiling.
Defeat flooded him as the days passed. His aching body added onto that feeling, the cold of the cell wafting through his mind and making him more and more uncomfortable. It was to the point that he had nearly forgotten what warmth felt like.
"Will my people really ever come to save me?
"Will they follow through with my dreams? And if so, are they doing it now?"
Obediently, Anton followed the cloaked man out the door, wondering just how that thief was able to trust him enough to do so. Though, the light grip on his shirt told him that the thief knew he would try and escape the second he took a step out into the fresh air.
"'Ray, are you done yet?" Jason asked.
Moray turned his head to shoot an annoyed glare in the direction of the thief. "Shut your mouth and give me another day," he hissed, crumping a piece of paper in his hand. "Isaac's notes are so sloppy, it's impossible to read them." He gave his head a slight shake before turning his gaze onto Anton. "So, are we taking the kids?" The man asked, sounding the least bit intrigued.
"And you expect us not to get caught with one flung over your shoulder?"
"Oh dear. Adam, do you have any brains?"
Adam? I thought his name was Jason…
"Of course I do." The thief gave a chuckle, pulling his hood up. "Remember? Wicked cloak? You'll be the only one visible." He lifted his hand and pushed down on the two gray circles located on the fabric. And then he, and Ada disappeared.
Anton flinched, jerking back slightly. But the collar of his shirt was still held, despite the disappearance of his captor and friend.
Did Jason just turn… invisible? He blinked at the thought, confusion and wonder settling down into his mind. He looked down at the sidewalk, but something else caught his eye.
He couldn't see his legs or feet.
A breath caught in his throat, and he lifted his hands to examine whether or not his eyes were failing him. Although he could feel the movement, his skin was not visible. Only a faint outline that glinted if he moved a certain way.
He remembered the time he had saw the thief disappear out of thin air, and realized how he was able to do it. Giving a wowed huff, he twisted and turned his hands, watching as flashes of light sparked and glittered. The feeling was… amazing. Nobody could see him – he couldn't barely even see himself.
This is a wicked cloak.
Then he gave a sad smile. He would be able to get away if he had the cloak. But, with Ada strung over the thief's shoulders, and the cloak wrapped tightly around the man, there was no way he would be able to unless he took off running and didn't try and help his friend.
Giving a defeated sigh, he looked up as Jason tugged the collar of his shirt and pulled him forward. Moray followed behind them, his eyes seeming to stare right through their bodies and into the street.
"You look like a moving sheet of glass," he stated blandly, his words quiet. "I don't think that is any less noticeable than some man carrying a girl on his shoulder."
"The human mind doesn't notice the things the person isn't involved with," Anton muttered under his breath, somehow feeling a need to defend the thief. Or perhaps he was defending the cloak, and not the person wearing it. "It was scientifically proven quite a while ago." He gave a small, nervous chuckle. "It all started out with a man dressing in a white sheet and pretending to be a ghost at a park. Nobody noticed him because they were occupied with something else."
Although he couldn't quite see the look, he could feel a set of surprised and confused eyes land on him.
"Huh. That's interesting. You're defending me? Heh. See, 'Ray? This is what you get for telling your hostage something they want to know," the thief boasted, his choice of words making Anton flinch.
Hanging his head, he followed more reluctantly. He had completely forgotten that he was being used for ransom…
I shouldn't be conversing with them! I should be trying to think of a way to get away! Stupid, I'm going to get myself killed…
"No. Our hostage is just an idiot."
"Soon people in the neighborhood are going to be thinking of you the same way," Jason laughed. "You look like you're talking to yourself."
Moray shook his head with a groan. "When are you going to stop acting like a kid?" He grumbled under his breath, tucking his hands in his pockets and turning his gaze to the side. He was sick of the thief's presence, and wished that the man would just go somewhere far away.
Their walk continued in silence. But all the while, Anton's mind raced as he clenched and loosened his fingers nervously. Thoughts and scenarios filled him, forcing his eyes to focus in on each over exaggerated scene.
They were using him for ransom to get information out of his parents. But, the kind of information they were looking for sent him spinning. His parents, they never said anything about the U.O to him – whatever that may be. They never even suggested that they were a part of something far greater than their normal lives at Duson City. Well, if the U.O was something great and magical.
He shook his head and closed his eyes for a short moment, only reopening them to glance worriedly at his friend. Though, he forgot that she was nothing more than a simple outline, and was disappointed when all he saw was the concrete sidewalk and the empty streets.
Turning his gaze to the sidewalk, he really wished that Ada was awake and being dragged alongside him. He might actually be able to figure out a way to escape the people and find a way to warn his parents about The Phoenix. Though, when the time came, he wouldn't really have anything to tell them about the group that was supposed to be his worst nightmare. Well, other than they are a bunch of lunatics who call themselves bad guys.
He almost chuckled. They really were terrible at being the enemy, even though Jason and Moray intimidated him.
The grip on his shirt tightened abruptly, nearly choking him.
Startled, he looked up at the transparent outline of the thief. And that was when he noticed he was back on his street. The shape of his house was visible through the man's body, the lights turned on and curtains wide open. He could see a form pacing back in forth, their arms lifting and lowering in frantic gestures. The lithe, curved shape told him that it was his mother. He could almost feel her worry flooding out of the house, and the thought of her being so close almost made him run off.
He gritted his teeth to keep his legs from moving in her direction. He had to stick with Ada. That would be the right thing for a loyal friend to do, wouldn't it?
Anton was tugged forward, the movement sending out a bright flash of light that nearly blinded him. And then something rammed into his stomach. A fist. It drove the air from his lungs and made his knees buckle, forcing him to crash to the ground in a heap when the hand holding him up released him.
Black spots filled his vision, and a small movement of darkness showed before a small whisper sounded right next to his ear.
"You should be thanking me for this, kid."
And then he blacked out.
Something salty coated his tongue, choking him back to reality. Slowly, groggily, he peeled his eyes open, feeling disgusted by the taste in his mouth. It made his stomach churn as he waited for the fuzziness to clear from his sight, which wasn't as pleasant as he had wished – it made the back of his eyes burn.
Soon, he was able to see soft rays of light shine in front of his face and a white ceiling hanging above his head. A soft fabric was wrapped around him, and whatever he was lying on tilted slightly in one direction.
As his eyes adjusted Anton noticed that he was lying on a bed, holding a thin blanket to his chest. The roof above him looked oddly familiar, and when he turned his head he saw a mirror closet reflecting his form back to him. And that was when he saw that he was in his room, lying comfortably in bed with the demon of death sitting calmly by his feet, casually conversing with his mother and father.
He blinked slowly. Why is Jason talking to mom and dad…? He thought drearily, closing and opening his eyes once more.
Why was Jason in his room?
Anton jerked upright with a yelp, using his legs to kick himself away from the thief.
But that was when something else struck him. First it came with a deep pain to his gut, and then with the realization that this man was not wearing a cloak, and that his eyes were a pale umber, not the opaque magenta eyes the thief wielded.
Gripping his stomach, he rested his back against the wall, confusion prodding his mind. The man had the same brown hair and facial features as Jason, but the lack of the colors and objects that granted him the title of demon of death made him look like a totally different person. And it probably was a totally different person – unless the thief had a twin brother.
"Aw, Honey, you're awake," his mother cooed, dropping her conversation with the man sitting atop Anton's bed. "Feeling any better?" She asked sweetly, taking a few steps over to her son's side.
He just gave a small noise in reply, feeling pathetic and confused.
She sighed in relief. "The last time you woke up you couldn't make a sound. Looks like you are getting better."
"He still has a while," the man spoke, his voice eerily familiar. Though, it had a softness in it that hadn't been there before. "Same goes for his friend."
Anton's father nodded slowly. "She still hasn't woken up yet. Though, Kevin, how did you find them?"
The man – named Kevin, Anton figured – shrugged. "Unconscious on the street, some guy standing over them."
"Good thing you found him," his mother purred, a tightness to her voice that told of her mistrust of the man. "I don't know what I'd do if somebody kidnapped my precious honey."
He couldn't stand his mother's nicknames for him.
His dad turned around. "I'm going to call our home doctor to see if we can get an appointment sometime soon," he said, "he looks awfully pale."
"Kevin, would you like something to drink?" Anton's mother spoke, watching carefully as his dad left the room.
"Sure. That'd be nice. Thank you," he responded with a little nod. "I'll keep the lad company."
And the second his mother stepped out of the room Kevin gave a chuckle. "Kid, I never knew your parents would be so easy to fool!" And that was when Anton knew, knew that this person was indeed Jason.
His shoulders tensed, eyes widening into moons.
"G-g-et out…" Anton managed, his voice wavering and weak. The pain in his gut continued to grow as images of his past encounters with the man flashed through his mind.
"Get out?" Jason huffed in amusement. "I only got here a couple hours ago. Jeez, don't ruin the fun." The man rolled his eyes, their umber color not seeming to fit his form. He drew something from his pocket – surprisingly located upon a pair of jeans – and opened it.
It was a contacts case. Magenta colored pieces of rubber-like material rested inside it, of which he pulled out and placed gently within his eyes.
Contacts? He wears contacts? Anton couldn't help but laugh inwardly at how stupid he suddenly felt. Now the odd colored eyes made sense. Now he wasn't quite so terrified of the man. He was no longer a demon of death!
Relaxing slightly, Anton pushed the blanket off and pulled his legs to his chest, staring curiously as Jason stood up and paced to the other side of the room. "So, Jason. You didn't tell my parents your real name?" He asked, hoping that the man would answer sincerely. His throat was dry, and he almost wished his mother had offered him a drink as well.
"So you probably didn't tell me your real name?"
"Will you tell me it now?"
"Nope." The thief grinned at the look Anton gave him and turned his back. He pulled yet another object out of his pocket and placed it on the desk resting by the door. "Give this to your parents when they get back," he said, pointing to a colorless piece of paper. "And give this one," he gestured to an orange envelope, "to your friend."
Then he grabbed his cloak – which had been hanging on the door – and pulled it over his shoulders. His body disappeared when he pulled down the hood.
Anton almost didn't want the man to go. So many questions that had suddenly sprung up as the man vanished from all sight, and now he wanted to know all of their answers.
He shook his head, a feeling of stupidity sinking in once more. All of his questions were probably answered in that piece of paper the thief had given him at that furnitureless house. He gritted his teeth and tried to push himself off of the bed, but a sharp stab of pain dug into his stomach, making him remember about the blow he had taken before he was brought to his home.
Though, why had he been brought here? Wasn't Jason the enemy?
He sighed, giving his head another shake. Those people confused him to no end. Were they the bad guys, or the good guys? He really wished he knew.
"Anton, dear, where did Kevin go?" His mother asked, padding back into the room with a glass cup of juice in her hand.
It took Anton a moment to reply, and as he did he turned his head to the side, not facing his mother's curious gaze. "His name's not Kevin…" He whispered in reply.
"It's not?" A bit of wonder seeped into her voice.
"No. I- I don't know his real name either, but he told me his name was Jason. I heard someone else call him Adam as well…" He looked up just as his mother was about to speak and cut her off. "He was the person who injured me," he stated, not exactly sure how much the thief had told his parents, and how much of it was a lie. "He was the one who stole my bag, and he was the one who gave me those blueprints."
Shock didn't fill his mother's gaze, only an understanding that shook Anton to the core.
"That's what I thought," she said, an unknown emotion lacing her words. She gave a small sigh and seated herself in his desk chair, placing the cup down next to the envelope and paper. Spinning around, his mother shot him a guilty glance. "Let's wait for your father to get off the phone, and then I'll explain how I knew."
Anton nodded shortly, a bit nervous about the seriousness in her voice.