Fiction Friday Week 7

Good (Saturday, I know) morning, folks.

I have to admit, with the thrush screwing up my head and body, this has been a zero production week.  I haven’t been able to work on anything for more than five minutes.  Because of that, I am looking through my work folder for something to share with you.  

*tick tock….shuffle…browse… tick tock*  

I just finished reading a very dark, erotic horror story.  I think that I will not share that with you, here.  I may put it up on literotica.com though.  Might do well there.  

*tick tock….shuffle…browse…read… tick tock*   Here, watch this while I browse…

I have been reading bits and pieces of this and that trying to find the right thing for you.  What I have settled on is a story called From Hell that I started writing for CampNaNo 2011.  It’s about a young man named Henry who, along with his mother and father, are blown up on the day of his sister’s thirteenth birthday.   Henry is, as he finds out after his death, half demon.  His sister, Patience, is kidnapped during the explosion by a witch with a healthy hate on.  

I am giving you the first two chapters.  I have just over 27,000 words written but that’s much too much to post here.  I think I may have to finish the story, maybe at the next Camp.  It promises to be a bloody swath of retribution before Henry is forced back to Hell.  Lots of violence.  I like.   I’d have to make sure I have notes taken to make sure I can get the continuity right and keep the flow of the story – energy, plot line, etc – going.  

It sounds like an interesting challenge, actually.  *makes a note somewhere*

Here is the story.  I am going to pick a portion of my trip to Scotland to share for this week’s photos, I think.  The nystatin is making me feel miserable, even as it makes my mouth feel better and I’m not up to hunting photo ops.  Gotta love it when the side effects of the medicine are as bad, or worse, than the problem it’s resolving.  Bleh.  

Have a great day, folks.

Muah!

 

From Hell

Chapter One

 

“Happy birthday to you!  Happy birthday dear Patience! Happy birthday to you.”  Henry let his parents finish warbling their last notes as he added his own lyrics in a deep voiced layer under their higher pitched notes.  “You look like a monkey and you smell like one too!”

His baby sister Patience, whose birthday it was, giggled and whacked him.  Henry laughed.  “Hey, whaddaya know, you hit like a monkey too!”

“Shut up Henry!”   Patience’s pretence at ire was spoiled by more giggling. 

Henry turned to watch as his parents hugged the girl.  The dining room was decorated in purple and white streamers and balloons.  The deep red walls showcased the decorations rather than clashing with them.  The pale pine dining table was set for a formal dinner that turned out to be lasagne, garlic bread and salad.  The matching side board was laden with gifts sent from long distance relatives to this favourite girl.  Henry and Patience were the only grandchildren, truth be told. 

There were even a couple of presents from the siblings of Henry’s mother’s ex-best friend.  Their daughter had been lost when Patience was five years old.  Pacifica had been the same age and her aunts and uncles had doted on both girls.  While they refused to see Patience, they still sent small gifts every year.

In the center of the sideboard was Patience’s birthday cake.  The outside was decorated in white icing (he was willing to bet it was French vanilla) with purple rosettes and purple fondant shaped like curtain swag.  He knew the cake itself was also French vanilla with a raspberry filling.  Their mum had made it for Patience when she was two and it’d been the favourite ever since.

Henry turned his attention to their parents and smiled as he sipped the lovely white wine Henry had bought for this most auspicious occasion – Patience becoming, gasp, a teenager.  His mother, Mary, was a graceful, beautiful, slightly curvy, woman.  She and Henry’s father, Steven, had been married fourteen years and she still looked upon him with the same love in her blue eyes Henry saw on their wedding day.  Her long, graying, honey-blonde hair was swept back into a French braid tucked under at the nape of her neck.  Henry smiled at her when she turned to see him watching her. 

His gaze moved from her to his adopted father.  Steven Havard was a self-made man.  He’d brought himself up from the streets of Edinburgh, a lost, abandoned boy, to become one of the most well-to-do business men in Glasgow.  Henry had been nine when Steven had come into their lives, along with his best friend Alex, who’d taken an immediate liking to Mary’s best friend Anna.  Steven had taken one look at the laughing boy, tall enough to reach his mother’s shoulders even at that age, and fallen just as deeply in love with him as his mother.  He had made Henry just as much a part of their relationship as any good birth father right from the beginning.  And Henry loved him wholeheartedly for it.  When Steven had asked him permission to adopt him, Henry said, “Yes, Dad.” 

“Henry, please get the gifts.”  Mary smiled at her son.

“Of course Mum.”  He crossed to the sideboard and eyed the selection, then his little sister.  “Hmmm I wonder which one I should give her first.”

“The really really big one!”  Patience grinned at him.

“Nope, I think not.”  He reached for the little, flat one and made to hand it to her.

“Wait!”  Steven flung a hand up in a stopping motion.

All three people froze and looked at him.  Mary laid a hand on his arm.  “What is it?”

“Patience, do you mind?”  He gave her a meaningful look.

She jumped up and ran from the room, calling out behind her.  “Oh yeah!  No of course I don’t mind, it’s Henry!”

“What’s Henry?”  Henry looked confused.

“You are, Beast.”  Patience had nicknamed him that, much to his annoyance, after seeing the X-men movies and figuring out that Beast’s actual name was Henry.  She spoke as she returned to the room, apparently labouring under a heavy box, complete with white knuckled grip and panting.  “Take this would you?  It’s heavy and it’s yours.”

Henry rushed forward and put some muscle into lifting the box from his little (little! Ha, he thought, at thirteen she was already a willowy 5’6”) sister.  He nearly threw the box at the ceiling.  He shifted his grip and reached to cuff the girl as she started giggling.   She dashed off and he smiled at her indulgently before looking to his parents.  “What’s this?”

“Son, the three of us are so proud of you and all you have accomplished.  You have black belts in both karate and jujutsu.  You’ve achieved the black obi in Kenjutsu AND moved into the second level in Iaido as well.  And you came here from finishing your BA in media arts.”  Steven nodded at the box.  “That is a token of our love for you, as well as our pride.  Please accept it.”

Henry blinked back a rare urge to cry and nodded.  He peeled the blue ribbon off the box, then the tape and opened it, only to be confronted with piles of newsprint.  He pulled it off the top and found a smaller box inside.  Patience giggled as he groaned.  Henry pulled the second box out and… went through all that again four more times before finding a small box. 

He looked at them all suspiciously as he weighed the four by two by three inch box in his hand.  “Is this actually it this time?”

Mary laughed.  “Yes darling, it is.  Go on, open it.”  She could barely contain her excitement at how well the evening was going.  It was perfect.  Patience would share her birthday with her friends tomorrow but tonight was for family and it was going beautifully.

Henry slit the tape on the edges of the box with his thumbnail and tugged the lid off the tall, long box.  When he saw what was inside he looked bemused.  It was a model of his dream car, a 1962 Aston Martin DB Mark III.  The very car Bond drove in Goldfinger.  It was a metallic navy blue finish with silver racing stripes.  It was a perfect miniature car.  “Oh wow.  This is a perfect replica of Bond’s car!  Except the colour of course, those are the ones I’d choose.”

Patience bounced up and down beside him, perfectly willing to wait to open her gifts she was so excited about this one.  “Take it out of the box!”

“Okay okay!”  Laughing, Henry pulled it out of the box and set it on his palm.  Then he noticed that there was something wrong with the bottom.  He turned it over and found a key taped to the undercarriage.  He looked up at his parents and sister.  “You got me a car?”

“Not just any car!”  Patience forgot she was a dignified teenager and grabbed his free hand, tugging him to his feet before racing in the direction of the garage. 

Mary grabbed the hand Patience dropped, giggling like a schoolgirl in her glee at the look on his face.  Normally there was no keeping anything from her son but they’d managed to keep this secret since he started university.  He was well and truly gobsmacked and she was enjoying every second of it.

Patience and Steven swept the tarp from the car and Henry sat down on the floor right where he was standing, staring at the car.  “Is that mine?  Really?”  All three members of his family nodded, each with a big goofy grin on their faces.  “But it should be about Patience tonight.  Surely this could have waited?”

His sister ran over and sat in his lap, hugging him.  “It was my birthday present to me to be able to watch the shock in your face.  So it’s all good.  But you gotta take me for a ride!”  She jumped to her feet and tugged on his arm, trying to get his 6’3” form off the floor.   Patience adored her brother and thought he was absolutely gorgeous.  Her friends swooned whenever they talked about him. 

He had dark brown hair he always kept cut short because of the cowlick in the front.  She thought it made him look like Superman.  She’d told him that once, hoping he’d leave it but he got all huffy and cut it off.  His eyes were two shades of brown, near the iris it was a dark chocolate so deep the iris almost disappeared in it.  Then it sort of melted outwards into something paler, a quality milk chocolate, like that stuff her Papa always brought her from Belgium when he had to go over there. He was really fit and really tall.   She suddenly worried that he wasn’t going to fit in the car.  But then she figured Papa already knew whether he would or not so it was okay.

Suddenly Henry was on his feet.  He tossed his baby sister over his shoulder in a fireman carry and crossed the three car garage before dropping her beside the passenger door, grinning as she giggled the whole way.  “Alright, Storm, let’s go for a spin.”  He swept the passenger door open as he called Patience by her X-Men nickname and bowed at her. After he closed the door, he hugged his parents.  “Thank you so much.  I don’t deserve anything this extravagant but I will, I assure you.” 

 

Chapter Two

Then he was in the car, fitting his brand new key into the ignition.  He turned it over.  The engine purred and the world exploded into fire and noise. The world went black for a split second then Henry was standing beside the car.  The garage was in flames and his car was scattered in pieces and twisted hunks of metal.  He couldn’t find his parents but he saw, with some confusion, pieces of his body smouldering nearby.

Then he noticed his sister lying nearby.  He rushed over to her but was unable to touch her.  She was surrounded by a shield of grey energy that he couldn’t break through. He screamed her name and she opened her eyes.

“Henry?”

He nodded as, just then, someone swept in, also wrapped in a grey energy shield, and picked Patience up by waving her hand. He shouted at the stranger.  “Hey!  What do you think you’re doing?  Bring her back!”  He moved to follow her but he was grabbed by the arms by some dark, wraith-like creatures.  Henry struggled mightily.  “Let me go!  I have to save my sister.”

The creatures dragged him back to a ragged edge portal in the ground.  Henry had the absurd thought, “How cliché” as he was dragged down into a fiery hell. 

A moment later Henry was surprised to see the fire end and something that resembled a pleasant environment opened up.  It was like everyone was living at the bottom of the Grand Canyon, pale sand and terra cotta coloured stone, steep walls with caves cut in here and there.  If it wasn’t for the random pits of fire and the screams of tortured souls, Henry would almost have been fooled.

The wraiths… demons, Henry corrected himself… escorted him to one large cave.  He was again surprised to see that musical instruments of all kinds and time periods graced one wall and weapons covered the opposite wall.  As the two lesser demons left him, he wandered over to look at the weapons, momentarily forgetting his grief and ire as he caressed blades made of stone, bronze, iron, copper and steel. 

“You like those do you?”  A soft lyrical male voice soothed him and made his shoulders relax.  “I quite prefer the instruments myself.”

Henry whirled around in surprise and glared at the man coming into the room.  “Who are you and why am I here?  What happened to my family?”

“All in good time, Son, all in good time.”

Henry’s fingers curled into his palms as grief and fury rose.  “I am not your son!”

Lyr settled himself onto a long red leather couch and propped his feet up on a glass coffee table.  He gestured at the couch across from him.  “Sit.”

Henry’s lip curled then he gave a curt nod and sat on the edge of the couch.  He heard a sigh from the demon then was surprised to feel a gentle shove on his chest that pushed him backwards.  Henry was distantly surprised at how easily the leather cradled his body.  “What do you want?”

“Allow me to introduce myself.”  He spread his hands wide.  “I am Lyr; a musician of some renown, here in Hell, on Earth and even in Heaven.  A Demon and, as it happens, your father.”

Henry nodded, not catching the last as his mind skimmed through his lessons on Demonology.  “You are known as the Lute Player.  It’s said that you drew people in with your music, public crowds but if you play for someone privately they sleep forever.”

Lyr laughed.  “Not true.  I do draw people in, like the Pied Piper but I don’t put them to sleep.  I use my music to convince them to make bargains for their souls.  It makes them very…”  he thought for a moment, “…pliable.”  He waited for Henry’s quick mind to catch up to the rest of his statement.

Sure enough, a moment later, Henry scowled.  “You are not my father! Steven was my father.”

“Oh to be sure, he adopted you and was every inch the father to you that he was to Patience, but I planted you in your mother’s womb.”

Henry leapt to his feet, furious.  “How dare you say such a thing! My mother was-“

Lyr waved a hand, shoving Henry back into the couch.  “Your mother was a good girl but not saintly enough to have a virgin birth.  Did you never wonder who your father was?”

“Of course I did.”  Henry’s admission was grudging.  “Mum always said he was a musician who…”  He trailed off.

“Who seduced her backstage and took advantage of the infatuation of a teenage fan.”  Lyr sighed.  “Truth was that I loved your mother, I still do.  She is beyond me now, more so than she ever was.  I loved her too much to curse her with the life of being a Demon’s mate.  It was bad enough that I accidentally gave her a half-breed child.”

Henry’s eyes widened then closed as he pinched the bridge of his nose.  “I’m a half demon?”

“Yes. There are some who would say that makes you a demon, regardless of your human side.  But there are others who will say that half does not make you a demon at all.  Ignore them all.  You are what you are.”

“That’s why I have such an affinity for violence?”

Lyr nodded.  “I was hoping you’d take up music, like me, but you take after your grandfather.  Weapons are instruments in their own right and you use them well.”

“How the hell would you know?”

Lyr took his feet off the glass table and leaned forward, gesturing to Henry to do the same.  “This is a looking glass.  It allowed me to keep tabs on you, watch over you.”

Henry suddenly remembered the look of terror in Patience’s pale blue eyes and leaned forward, looking at Lyr with urgency.  “Can you see my sister?”

“I can’t see into Heaven, only on Earth.”

“She’s not dead!”  Henry waved his hands around as he talked.  “I saw her.  The world exploded then it was black and then I was standing in the fire, in the wreckage.  I saw her lying on the floor wrapped in a grey shield.  Someone else came in while I was trying to get her then your little demon wraiths came to get me.”

Lyr looked startled.  He’d been sure the entire family had blown up.  It was odd that the sister had not.  He didn’t know who had killed his son but he intended to find out.  “Let’s look, maybe we can find out who blew up that pretty new car of yours.”  As Henry leaned forward to see better, Lyr waved a hand over the glass, chanting softly. 

***

 

Patience watched the car fly apart, saw the fire bloom around her.  She witnessed her brother blow up then she saw him kneeling beside her before the strange lady came to get her.  It looked like he had said her name but she couldn’t be sure.  She tried to reach him but there was a bubble around her.  She didn’t know how he could be there when she saw him in a zillion pieces but she was sure he was alive somewhere, somehow. 

That conviction made hope bloom in her heart; that hope was a tiny white carnation nestled deep in her mind.

The lady who had grabbed her shield like it had a handle on it and dragged her off looked kind of familiar but Patience couldn’t figure out who it was.  The woman’s hair was long and black with a white streak that reminded Patience of Rogue, the ex-X-Men who took the cure.  She decided to nickname this bad woman Rogue.  She had very angry dark green eyes. 

Rogue dragged Patience away from the home and life she loved and stuffed her in a van.  Then she drove off in a hurry. It seemed like forever before the bumping and lurching of the old van stopped and the back doors opened again.  Patience was dragged out, still cocooned in the shield and into a house.  Rogue pulled her up the stairs like a heavy duffle bag and deposited her in a bedroom.

Patience stared up at the woman and tried to talk, pleased when she found she could.  “What do you want?  Why did you blow up my family?”  The girl got really angry when tears started sliding from her eyes.

Rogue smiled.  It didn’t reach her eyes and it gave Patience the chills.  “My name,” she said, “is Isobe Shyrie.  But you and your family knew me as Anna Reid.  Your brother killed my daughter.”

Patience gasped in shock as the memories of the smiling, laughing green-eyed lady she called Auntie flooded into her mind.  “Auntie Anna?”

The woman snarled at her and shook the cocoon.  “I am not your aunt!  Ever since your brother killed my daughter I have been waiting to get my revenge.”

“That’s a lie!”  Patience was outraged.  She shoved against the shield, pushing power into it instinctively.  She used her anger to fuel her power and shoved hard.  The cocoon shattered and she fell to her back on the floor.  Patience quickly scrambled to her feet, hands curled into fists at her side, very much like her brother.  “Henry didn’t kill Pacifica!  It was just bad luck!”

“Oh yes he did!  He was supposed to be looking after you two and he sent her to her death.”  The woman suddenly smiled though, again, it didn’t reach her eyes.  “You’ll make a lovely replacement for my Pacifica.”

Patience whispered, “I am not your daughter.” Then she was lost in the memory of that day.

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