It was a bright and sunny morning. The sun shone down on an elegantly built mansion, reflecting off it's lake red exterior and gold trim.

Within the large house, an alarm clock began blaring, prompting the person in bed near it to stir awake. A hand reached out from under the covers and turned the alarm off, then slipped back under the blankets, ready to go back to sleep.

Then, the person in the bed, a little girl, threw the blankets off, exclaiming, "Crud! I almost forgot!"

She leapt out of bed, carefully stepped over all the toys and books that were littered on the floor and ran out of the room.

The child bolted down a staircase and ran down a marble-floored hallway, leading to a huge room that doubled as the dining room and living room. On one half of the room, was a long table surrounded by over a dozen chairs; on the other half was a large sofa, a few armchairs and ottomans, a coffee table, and an entertainment center that contained a wide-screen TV and stereo.

At the dining room table sat a gray-haired man with a beard, who was reading a newspaper. He looked at the little girl that just entered and said, "Good morning, Alex."

"Morning grandpa," the kid greeted, before walking into the kitchen to see a tall woman with raven-black hair stirring a bowl of batter. She looked over at Alex and said, "I just finished making the batter a few moments ago. The pancakes will be ready in about half-an-hour."

"Okay, Zara," Alex replied before going back into the dining/living area. She took a seat at the dining table and looked around the room before asking, "Where's Gramps?"

"In his study," her grandpa answered. "He woke up very troubled about something and needed to be alone in it for a while. He's been there for about an hour now."

"Should I go get him?" Alex asked.

"That won't be necessary. He'll be out before breakfast is ready," the old man answered. "Besides, you know you're not allowed to enter his study."

"I know," Alex said.

For a big mansion, there were a lot of places Alex and a few others were not allowed to go in. There were several locked rooms that nobody, but her grandparents, Samuel and Beast, were allowed to enter, two of the rooms being Samuel and Beast's studies.

Samuel was very calm in telling people that the places were forbidden and how he'd appreciate it if they didn't intrude into them. Beast on the other hand, relied on threats of physical violence to ensure nobody attempted to break the rules, though Alex was sure he'd never really hurt anyone.

These rules made Alex, and her older brother, Robbie, really suspicious of their grandparents. They had only known them for 2 years, meeting them right after an incident involving their parents that prevented either of them from being able to take care of them. Alex was four at the time, so the change effected her a lot, but she didn't exactly know what the "incident" was, other than the fact that her mother was dead and her father was now missing. Robbie on the other hand, might actually know what happened to their parents, but he refused to tell her.

At that moment, a teenage boy with messed up brown hair trudged into the room.

"Morning Robbie," Grandpa Samuel greeted his grandson.

"Morning," Robbie mumbled in response as he sat down in a chair next to Alex. Within seconds, his head had fallen onto the table, seeming to fall asleep.

Samuel sighed, "I knew him staying up half the night to play video games was a bad idea. I should've shut off the power to his bedroom."

"Can you blame the kid for doing it, though?" a voice asked. A bearded, middle-aged Cuban man entered the room and took a seat across from Samuel. "Yesterday was the last day of school. Of course he's going to celebrate in some crazy way," the man named Constantine stated. "And what better way than a Nintendo marathon!"

"It was Playstation, actually," Robbie muttered.

"Ah, so you're still alive," Constantine said.

"I'm clinging," Robbie replied.

Samuel then turned towards his two grandkids and asked, "So, what are you plans for summer vacation going to be. Hopefully you're not going to hold yourself up in the house the whole time. Or play video games without stopping."

"I'm going to play outside a lot more," Alex answered. "And read more books."

"Very good, and you, Robbie?" Samuel asked his grandson.

Robbie lifted up his head and said, "Well, since you're so concerned with my video game obsession, maybe I'll take up reading as a hobby."

"Excellent idea," Samuel said, smiling.

Then, Robbie got a mischievous smile on his face and said, "However, in order to read the material I'm interested in, I'm going to need to take up lockpicking."

Samuel's smile fell. In the library, there was a cabinet of books with a lockable glass door that was full of books that nobody, but Samuel and Beast, were allowed to read. Robbie, along with a few others, had been badgering him for a while about what the books were, though Samuel always insisted that they weren't very interesting.

Constantine laughed and said, "Robbie, lockpicking is not as easy as Bethesda makes it look. It requires a lot of patience."

"I'm smart. I can figure it out," Robbie said.

Alex then piped up. "If only there was some special device that could automatically unlock something when you stuck in in a lock. Imagine all the places I could rob with it!"

Then, a voice snarled, "There's no way in hell I'm letting either of you kids grow up to become criminals."

The four looked at the entrance of the room to see a scrawny-looking man with long red hair pulled back into a tight ponytail and piercing purple eyes. Beast, Robbie and Alex's other grandfather, had a very unique appearance for his age, but his hair and eye color weren't the characteristics he had that stood out most. It was these two scars he had that ran from the edge of each side of his mouth and went halfway through his cheek.

Robbie and Alex would've been lying if they said that these scars didn't freak them out the first time they saw them, which was probably way Beast wore a doctor's mask for the first few weeks they had moved into the mansion. They got used to them after a while, but they had questions as to what gave their second grandpa these scars. Unfortunately, this was a question the kids weren't allowed to learn the answers to yet.

"Morning Beast," Samuel greeted his husband, who just grunted in response and took a sip from the mug he was holding.

"Morning Gramps," Alex greeted her other grandfather.

As odd as it may seem to some people, Beast and Samuel were married, despite the fact that during the time when Robbie and Alex guessed they got together was during a time when being gay was heavily scorned upon. Unfortunately, how Beast and Samuel met was one of those questions the kids weren't allowed to ask yet.

"What have you been talking about?" Beast asked.

"What the kids will be doing over the summer," Samuel answered simply.

"Like digging into the family secrets you keep hiding from us," Alex threw in.

"Cute," Beast replied sarcastically. "Keep that talk up and I'll never trust either of you to be alone in this house."

"Got it, Gramps," Robbie and Alex obliged.

Beast looked over at Constantine and asked, "Where's your wife?"

"In the kitchen," Constantine answered. "I was just about to go in and see if she needed any help."

"Well, then get to it! Just cause you're a married man doesn't mean you can put the weight of all the kitchen work on your wife," Beast snarled, prompting Constantine to hop up from his seat and run into the other room.

Within seconds, there was a loud explosion that came from somewhere else in the house.

Beast slammed his mug down on the table and shouted, "Jesus christ, what did that idiot Russian do now?!"

Alex, in shock from the loud explosion and frightened by Beast's raised voice, began crying, covering her ears. Loud noises have bothered Alex ever since she was three, but Robbie, Beast and Samuel had no idea why. They just know that it was very difficult to calm her down afterwards.

While Samuel calmed his granddaughter, Beast stomped out of the room, with Robbie following close behind to see what had happened.

The two came across a teenage girl with tan skin and black hair, who said when she spotted them, "Good to know that I wasn't the only one that heard that noise. Morning Beast, morning Robbie."

"Morning Leah," Beast replied. "Did that noise come from Ivan's lab?"

"Pretty sure," the girl named Leah answered. Leah was 18, two years older than Robbie, and was Constantine and Zara's daughter. She had apparently lived in the mansion all her life and knew the whole building very well...except for the secret rooms of course. She was as curious about what was behind those doors as Robbie and Alex were, but she minded her own business, figuring that Beast or Samuel will tell them what they were eventually.

The trio of people made their way down the hall until they got to the stairs that led down to the entrance hall. They went down and turned towards a pair of double-doors that were towards the back of the hall.

Standing near the doors was a brown-haired man holding a toddler girl with the same hair color.

"I see Ivan's latest mishap has caught your attention, Frederick," Beast said to the man.

"How could it not? It practically shook the mansion," the man named Frederick said.

Frederick had been a resident at the mansion a few years before Robbie and Alex showed up, moved in straight from Britain according to Beast. He was married to Ivan, another resident of the mansion who had caused the loud explosion that occurred a few moments ago. A little while before Robbie and Alex moved in, they adopted a baby named Carina, who was the child Frederick was holding.

"Well, better see what the damage is," Beast said, throwing open the doors to Ivan's lab.

Inside, smoke was streaming from a large machine and a black-haired man with stubble was trying to fan it out through an open window with a large piece of cardboard.

Seeing he had company, he tossed his makeshift fan aside and stood up straight with his hands behind his back. "Morning Wagner, Frederick, children," he greeted his new audience.

Ivan was a bit of an inventor and engineer. He fixed anything electrical and mechanical, and liked to create his own machines in his spare time. However, it was very rare that any of his creations worked. The closest he ever got to a success was inventing a kind of ring that would alter your appearance, specifically your skin, hair, and eye colors, but who would need that?

"What'd you fuck up this time?" Beast asked.

"Just a machine I've been working on for a while," Ivan explained. "I just plugged it in and turned it on to see if it was functioning, and part of it must've suffered a malfunction and...combusted."

The group observed the contraption as it shut itself down and smoke stopped billowing out of it. A huge piece fell off it and landed on the floor with a loud bang.

Beast slapped his hand on his forehead and grumbled, "Get this mess cleaned up and get upstairs for breakfast. And don't attempt to activate any other machines today! That last explosion scared Alex!"

"Yes, boss," Ivan said.

As the group of five left the lab, Frederick said to Beast, "Sorry about that, Beast. Ivan is really eager to get that machine to work. You know how determined he tends to be."

"Idiocy is what I would call it. No wonder he didn't get a job at that Russian lab," Beast replied.

Leah's eyebrows raised, "Ivan almost got a job at a Russian lab? What happened?"

"I'm not the one you should be asking, but if you ask Ivan, I doubt he'll tell you," Beast said.

Robbie sighed. Seems like his grandparents weren't the only ones who liked to keep secrets from people.

Then, the group heard Constantine holler from the living/dining room, "Food's ready!"

Soon, everyone was settled in their chairs at the dining room table, eating their breakfast and talking about their summer plans.

Alex, who recovered from her overstimulated state due to the explosion, and Robbie, mostly zoned everyone out and thought about all the mystery rooms in the mansion and all the secrets their grandparents were keeping from them.

Even if it took all summer, even if it risked getting them in serious trouble, even if it risked them getting killed, they were going find out what their grandparents were hiding from them.

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