In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

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Arkane
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In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by Arkane » Sun Jun 07, 2020 2:35 am

The sound of aluminum cans and glass bottles clinked from the alleyway, followed by the creaks and twangs of metal scraping against metal. A man, who could only be described as homeless, was busy rummaging through a green dumpster. Every so often, half of his body would disappear inside the metal box, only to reemerge with several cans and plastic bottles, that were then unceremoniously dumped into the waiting grocery cart nearby. The man was old in years, perhaps in his late 50’s, with a full grey beard and wrinkles around his eyes. He wore a mismatch of clothes, including a severely pilled and dirty red toque, an equally filthy jean jacket and holy mitts, along with a pair of jeans with a series of patches that had been hemmed over the years. He continued to dig through the dumpster, mumbling to himself in hushed whispers. “Need money. Bill needs money. For me, Bill,” he would say, repeatedly as he worked. A short distance down the alleyway, leaning against the damp building wall, was a younger man. He was also dressed in the same mishmash of dirty clothing, his most prized possession, the red and black plaid jacket that was currently over his shoulders. A soft breeze tousled his slightly messy dark hair, his arms crossed tightly across his chest. Hidden amongst his dark tresses, on either side of his forehead, were two small bumps, which resembled the starts of black horns. A pale comparison to what they once were. Sharp green eyes were now glaring at the old man, whom had now fallen face first into the disgusting dumpster. “Damn it, Bill. I ain’t pulling you out,” Locke said, angrily, his gaze now shifting to the street.

It was a busy street, with pedestrians meandering amongst each other and the nonstop whirr of vehicles on the road. None of the passing humans bothered to glance down the alleyway, effectively ignoring the homeless man scavenging for empty bottles. If they did happen to look down the alleyway, that would be exactly what they saw. A homeless man. Most of them would completely pass over the younger man waiting broodily by the entrance. It was part of Locke’s curse. Locke remained invisible to everyone unless they were actively looking for him. For that to take place, one would have to become aware of him. This could be achieved easily enough, by Locke simply interacting with other humans, but that would be far too much effort on his part. Thinking about the curse that was placed on him made his jaw clench in anger. Everyday he was reminded of it by the black runic tattoo plastered on the side of his neck. It resembled a magic circle of sorts, that faded and reappeared at random. The same runic tattoo was also on the back of Bill’s hand, a sign of their connection…which was why Locke was currently hanging out in an alleyway with a crazy old man. Bill was his host. As far as Locke knew, he needed his host’s life force to survive in the human realm. That same life force was also responsible for giving Locke a physical body and the ability to use some of his powers…. without Bill’s life force…well, Locke would probably cease to exist. He looked over at Bill, the old man having managed to escape from the clutches of the dumpster. Bill’s gloved hands grasped the shopping cart and he began to hobble down the alleyway, seemingly finished with this dumpster for the day. With a sigh, Locke followed him, hands locked behind his head.

“Where are you going now, old man,” called Locke, annoyed. Bill looked back at him from over his shoulder, eyes widening in paranoia. It was clear that Bill had some mental health issues. “It’s him! The demon is still following me,” he hissed, quickening his pace. “I already told you, I ain’t gunna eat ya…yet,” Locke replied, rolling his eyes and continuing after him. He didn’t have a choice at this point. Bill was his host and Locke couldn’t venture too far from his host. He could already feel how feeble Bill’s lifeforce was. The old man was at the end of the line. Locke just didn’t know what was going to kill him, at which point, he’d need to find another host. If that was even possible. He was still learning about the details of the curse. All he knew was that he needed to protect his host. Which was proving easier said than done. Bill slept in dangerous places, ate half rotting food, and injected himself with a weird liquid every now and then. Was that normal for humans? Hell, if Locke knew. Bill was the first host the curse paired him with ever since he was banished from the demon realm. Everything he knew of the human realm he learned from Bill. He wondered where Bill was going to settle for the night this time. The old man usually kept to himself, as no one else wanted to be around his abnormal antics. Locke followed Bill to a place where an exchange of plastic bottles happened, and Bill got a few pieces of paper. Then they went to a nearby food stand where Bill bought a cup of brown liquid and some squishy substance that was called bread. As the sun began to set, Locke had followed Bill to an overgrown forest on the outskirts of the city. Looks like they were settling down in the forest for the night.

Locke didn’t mind the forest. It was quiet and away from other humans. There were a few buildings here and there, but nothing of note. Bill had settled between three trees, where he made a small fire and then proceeded to take out the objects he used to inject himself with the liquid that made him dose off, and ramble more incoherently to himself. Well, whatever. Locke could care less, and it gave him time to explore his surroundings without having to follow Bill around. The night air was cool, but pleasant and the sounds of crickets could be heard throughout the forest. It was oddly peaceful and for a moment, Locke could forget about his predicament. Only for a moment, however. He was soon reminded that he was a cursed demon when he saw a few other, minor demons, wandering the forest freely and unchained. One came in the form of a rat, the other a weird, floating blob with bulging eyes. Minor demons like that were everywhere in the human realm, hidden from most humans. Though he suspected that some humans were able to see them. Regardless, he found their presence annoying. “Get outta here!,” he said, grumpily, punching the floating blob. The poor thing went spinning violently away, disappearing from his sight. A small chuckle of pleasure escaped his lips, before turning into a grunt of pain. The tattoo on the side of his neck burned so fiercely, that it almost made him stumble. “Billlll,” he groaned, running back to his useless host. When Locke found Bill, the man was crazed, with a manic look in his eyes, and sweat dripping from his forehead. Clenched in his hands was a thick tree branch, that he brandished towards Locke the moment he entered his field of vision.

“Demon!! It’s all your fault,” Bill yelled, swinging the branch towards him. Locke dodged it easily. “Hey, old man. Calm down, would ya. You’re being annoying,” Locke growled, dodging more of Bill’s attacks. This went on for a while, before Locke became fed up, caught the branch mid swing, and crushed it in his clenched hand. “I told you to stop,” seethed Locke, his eyes flashing briefly. Bill backed away, shaking his head, looking like a deer caught in headlights. Within seconds, Bill was running from Locke, screaming bloody murder about demons. Locke of course, chased after him, easily catching up to his host. He had casually followed Bill all the way though the forest, the man finally stopping in front of a brick house. But not a word more could be said, as Bill caught his foot on a jutting out rock, the old man falling onto his back, his head landing with a loud crunch on another rock. Lock’s eyes widened, the demon reaching out to catch him, only to have Bill’s coat slip through his fingers. Bill merely just laid there, his eyes looking up at Locke, the demon standing over him. “Great, now you did it,” Locke said, watching as blood began to pool around Bill’s head. “I didn’t know I had to protect you from yourself?! Stupid old man! Get up and get a hold of yourself,” Locke growled, pulling Bill up by the hem of his shirt and shaking him violently. Bill did not reply and instead a gurgling sound could be heard as he struggled to breath. It was clear now that Bill was dying. Locke could sense it through their connection, he could see it by the flashing of their runes. He let go of the man, his body once again falling onto the hard ground.

“Damn it all,” said Locke, through clenched teeth. He’d needed to find a new host. Fast. Bill was taking too long to die. Locke raised his hand; a set of sharp pointed claws could be seen glinting in the moonlight. He raised his hand up…and then forcefully shoved it into Bill’s chest, where he gripped the old man’s heart and violently yanked it out of his chest cavity. The life immediately left Bill’s eyes, just as Locke bit into his still beating heart. The coppery taste of the red liquid filled his mouth, the demon savoring every bite. Delicious. However, his meal was short lived, as the pain from the curse mark on his neck consumed him. His mind grew blank, the only thing he understood was finding a new host. That primal instinct took over, the demon breathing in deeply, as if smelling his next prey….and he found one, conveniently in the house that was right next to him. Oh, and this human's life force was much stronger and much longer than Bill’s ever was. Locke turned his head towards the window of the house, momentarily seeing the human female it belonged too, before she disappeared into the confines of her dark room. He ran towards the house, Locke jumping onto the wall and crawling up it on all fours, before pulling his way up to her windowsill in a powerful lunge. With no subtlety whatsoever, Locke shoved himself through the window, broken glass shattering and falling around him.

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by WackyQuacky » Sun Jun 07, 2020 11:49 am

The sun had been beating down against the polished to perfection glass of the class room and, unfortunately, Skylars seat was directly in the course of the burning rays as they cast over ever avaliable surface. Summer was just around the corner but the pressure from exams was stopping everyone from enjoying the splendid heat outside. Where her seat was, Skylar had no escape from the blistering swelter that could only be called as 'Exam Weather', where the sun was so tempting for you to sit out in all day but the looming mountain of exams held you like chains to your desk. A heavy sigh of relief from the impending heat stroke fell from Skylars lips as she rose from her seat at the bell. Not even the weekend yet but her body already felt like it had been through the races.

Just as she finally had zipped up her very pristine black leather school bag that she had splurged a little in this year so her shoulders were cut from her body by the straps, a bottle of coke was thrust into her hands. With little through, Skylar ripped the lid off and took a deep sip from the bottle, not minding the sting as it pass her throat to her stomach. She let out a soft pant, partly from the pain of the sting, partly from the reprieve, as she took the bottle from her lips.
"Oh my god, I love you" Skylar said as she turned and handed the now half empty bottle back to Lois, who was nearly looking st her with pitty. With a laugh, she took the bottle and placed it into her shoulder bag, trying to pretend that get shoulder wasn't in plethora of discomfort from the old tattered bag she has had for the last three years. Lois touched her hand off Skylars forehead as she spoke.
"I think I may have seen your life leave your body at the end there. You could have asked Mr Sanders to put the electric blinds down, ya know" Giving Skylar a pitiful smile as she could feel her forehead boiling under her finger tips. Laughing and batting her friends hand from her forehead, Skylar stepped from the desk anyway from the sun beam falling around the now scorching table.
"With how pissy he's been the last hour, I feel he would have hit me in the head with the remote if I asked. Plus, this is going to be the only sun i have for rest of the day with revision tonight" With a quick goodbye to the solemn looking teacher, the two followed the crowd out of the class room and down the corridor, stepping out into the breeze that accompanied the sun.

The outside of the school was looking but modern compared to the decrepit and crumbling other schools in the area. The front was decorated with summer flowers which bloomed in deep purples, reds and yellows. The water feature that broke the entrance path in two was power hosed and cleaned every summer when no one was around but as of right now, was gross and covered with the green sluged of algae that had accumulated in the cracks of the rough stone. Pennies had also formed a layer at the bottom to give it a bronze sheen, thrown in by students that needed a little extra luck on their exams. Skylar turned to Lois, giving her a slight nudge with her hip to draw her attention from basking in the sun. Lois was a lot paler that Skylar, with dark hair and dark clothes, leading many to call her an emo but she didn't really care. She was well liked by nearly every one who met her, the pale and attractive face drawing them in and her bubble personally locking them down.
"Do you have any idea what will be on this science test tomorrow?" Skylar asked, wanting something to study around rather than doing a general broad revision. On top of her English certificate, Skylar had added Science, which now she was starting to wonder if it was too much for her. It didn't take her long to get used to the science classes but double the exams seems nearly impossible. Lois tapped her teeth together as she hummed,
"I think... some people were saying about the mechanisms during infection by the innate immune system? That's all I can really remember" Skylar let out a sigh. It was gonna be a long night.

As they reached the gate of the school, both Skylar and Lois took separate paths, Lois hopping onto the bus that stood at the entrance, and Skylar turning to walk down the road past the school. It was handly for Skylar to just walk to university rather than taking her car every day. It meant she didn't have to fight for a parking space and she could cut through back roads that she couldn't in a car. Even with the sun turning her hair into fire on her head, the walk home was pleasant, the wind sweeping loose strands back from her eyes. Walking down one of the darker sections of the roads, she spotted something that could only be described as a puddle of sludge slip it's way across the path and seeping into the small cracks in the wall. The blob of Gray gelatinous goo was out of view by the time she turned her head. She was never quite sure what those things were that danced in the dark spots of the road but after being told she was seeing things, she learnt to keep it to herself when she saw those little creatures. Ignoring then had always seemed like the best way, when she paid them any attention, they would come towards her so keeping her eyes to herself had become second nature.

She quickened her pace as she walked, seeing the sludge thing had put her on edge. It didn't take her long to get back to her house and throw herself through the threshold, feeling safe as the door shut behind her. Kicking off her shoes, she headed straight up to her room, yelling through the house to her mum that she was home and getting a distance yell in reply, saying dinner will be ready soon. As she stepped into her room and chucked her bag onto the bed, she felt the weight finally fall from her shoulders that university was over for another day. The moment of relaxation was short lived as she stripped off, throwing her skirt and top into the wash basket before getting into her comfortable clothes. A Gray over sized tee shirt with a little purple planet on the chest that she had bought when at the natural history museum, a red and black checkered pair of tracksuit bottoms and fluffy socks. With a thick black bobble, she pulled her hair into a bun and sat down at her desk, already feeling too exhausted to work. With a heavy sigh, she pulled the books from her bag and piled them up in front of her.

Skylar pulled her head from the books she had nearly fallen asleep in, feeling the imprint of the edge of the pages on her cheek. Stiff pains shot through her body as she stretched, nearly knocking a few dozen notes from the table. At the state it was it, the desk has been completely covered in notes upon notes of what Skylar thought would be important for the test but now worried if she took any of it into her brain. Looking out her window, the trees making a line for the far off forest was invisible in the darkness, with her clock reading ten to one in the morning. A few cracks spread across her back as she stretched but it couldn't block the sounds of rushing then a dull thud. Skylar stayed posed in the stretch for a second as she listen, wondering if it was her car outside. After a second of silence, a wet, squishy sounding squelch broken the silence and the room fell still. It was a strange feeling. In that moment, all the sound seem to drain from around her for a few seconds before she inched her still stiff body from the seat and crawled across the room to the open window at the back of her house. Holding onto the edge of the windowsill, she moved herself as slowly as she could to look out the window for the sound. At the bottom of the drop from her window she could make out the silhouette of a man standing over something stretched out on the ground. She could tell that it was the source of the sound but before she could think, the man's head whipped towards her and she could see the sheen of wet blood drench his fingers, chin and drip down onto the mass below him, that she now make out what it was. A body. The body of a fully grown man was lying facing the stars with his chest ripped open like something from a syfy movie. As her eyes got a glimpse of the man's face, she threw herself backwards, bringing the window handle with her as she tried desperately to close and click it shut as her limbs were beginning to go unresponsive to anything she did. She staggered back slightly, hoping she had hidden in time. Her legs shook under her as she her breathing hitched in her throat. She starred at the window for only a second before the glass caved into the room and the man who had been standing below, now stood in the centre of the ring of broken glass. Trying to avoid being stabbed by the shards of glass, she flung herself back, falling over the seat of her desk and landing on the floor with a thud. The air knocked from her lungs on impact with the floor but she still tried to drag her sore body to safety until her back hit the draws of her dresser. Reaching for her hockey stick lying on the floor, she pointed it up at him, her hands still shaking as she tried to intimidate him from her cowering position on the floor.

"Get out! I'm not afraid to use this" Trying her best, she shook the stick but the end was getting heavier by the second and slowly dropping down to the floor. She could still see the blood dripping from the man's mouth and hands, making her eyes lose focus as she felt bile sting the back of her throat. The man most certsinly didn't look human and nearly straight away she could tell her was like those monsters that hide in the slip roads but he was different. Till now, none had been able to interact with objects, disappearing under a coffee cup rather than pushing it over, but he had been able to break through a window to get to her.

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by Arkane » Sun Jun 07, 2020 8:51 pm

Locke found himself standing in the human’s room. Almost immediately her scent filled his lungs, the sound of her heart beating pounding like a drum in his ears. It was the sound of her life force, that precious energy that would sustain him in the cursed human realm. He needed it. He needed her. Not bothering to brush off the shards of glass from his shoulders, Locke turned his head to face the blonde girl, the pitiful human now cowering with her back against the nearby dresser. It was rather amusing how she lifted the hockey stick up in a feeble attempt to protect herself. He took a sudden step forward, his hand reaching out to grab the hockey stick, yanking her forward along with it.

With blackened eyes, Locke stared into her own, rather possessively, a dark little smile creeping over his lips. “That’s cute,” he said in response to her threat. With a malicious grin, he abruptly grabbed her other hand and hastily pressed it against the curse mark on his neck. A searing pain swept across the entirety of Locke’s body, followed by a bright flash of light emitted from the magic in the rune. He grunted in pain, enduring the process as the magic connected their souls together. The whole ordeal only lasted for a few seconds, before the room faded to its original dim hue. A similar, smaller mark appeared on the back of Skylar’s hand now, signifying their connection. It was done. He had a new host and could finally relax knowing that his life wasn’t in imminent danger anymore. Locke could only manage a small chuckle, before stumbling backwards and collapsing onto Skylar’s bed.

The whole binding process had taken a lot out of him, causing him to feel like he had been in some intense battle. Another aspect of his curse. He had been without a host for only a few seconds and the effects it had on his human body was devastating. He rolled over onto his stomach, the demon mumbling, his face now buried in the soft blankets. He didn’t want to pass out, but he could feel the weariness threatening to consume him. Ah well, at least he had a host again. One that was a vast improvement from his previous one. Skylar’s life-force was strong and powerful. He could sense it even now, just as she could sense his. She would serve him nicely. Pleased with himself, he let himself fall into a deep sleep, but not before speaking to her once more. “Don’t go and die on me before I wake up...,” he grumbled.

His body needed time to recover…and with Skylar’s soul attached to his, he could do this much faster than usual. Such a selfish demon he was. Poor Skylar. There was a demon passed out haphazardly on her bed, his mouth slightly open and staining the sheets with blood from his previous meal. Not a moment later, soft snores would be heard escaping his nose, signifying the deep sleep he was in…all the while a cool breeze chilled the room from the shattered window.

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by WackyQuacky » Sun Jun 07, 2020 10:43 pm

Trembling and tightening her grip around the hockey stick, she tensed to try and keep her weapon, only serving to drag her into the shattered glass that covered the floor. Sharp blades of the shattered window dug into her knees but even as her blood seeped into the wood of the floor, the trembling fear that seeped through her body made her numb to the pain. His mocking tone sent a chill down her spine and she tried to release her grip from the stick but before she could fully let go, the man had grabbed her wrist and pressed it against his neck. As the glow of the rune escaped the needle thin gap between their skin, the back of her palm burnt and stung, like a branding iron had been pressed against her. Clutching the wrist of the hand that he held to his neck, the pain was nearly too much for her to barely, halting her voice in her throat. The seering pain spread up her arm until she was released, yanking her hand away and holding it to her chest.

Shaking from the pain and shock of the ordeal, she stared at the back of her hand. The symbol was surrounded by red inflamed skin and the actual symbol glowed brightly in the dim lighting of the room. Her teary eyes lifted from studying her sore hand at the sound of his voice, even his sleepy tone making her jump and hit her back against the handle of the dresser again. What did he mean by that? Don’t die before he wakes up? She wasn't sure if it was a threat or a warning at this point and she curled her legs up to her chest subconsciously.

Just as the body on her bed began to fall simply into sleep, her bedroom door flung open and Skylars mum and dad dove into the room, her dad brandishing a customised baseball bat with metal strips nailed into place to cover the already dented wood underneath. Upon seeing Skylar, her mum fell to her knees, examining the shards that stabbed into Skylars flesh.
"Oh sweetheart! What happened?" Rushing to grab the tweezers from her night stand, Skylars mother got to work slowly picking the splinters of window from her daughter's legs. Her father looked at the shattered glass that scattered the floor and outside towards the ground. To Skylars surprise, he didn't flinch from anything outside. Didn't mention blood or the body. Lifting herself from the ground and leaning against the dresser to look out of the window. Although it was dark, she could see many sludgey minor demons dragging the corpse of the man away into the treeline in the distance, leaving barely a trace of blood behind.

Wincing from the alcohol her mother treated her wounds with, Skylar watched the demon that had fallen asleep on her bed without a word of what happened. Pointing to the back of her hand, she asked her mother if she could see a mark on the back of her hand. Thinking she meant she had a cut there, her mother touched it with the cotton wool bud of rubbing alcohol. It seemed to be that Skylar was the only one to see the rune. Tears rolled down Skylars cheeks, realising she had gotten herself into a situation that might leave her fearing for her life if the demons words were anything to take seriously. The glass was cleared from the floor but the broken window still caused the curtain to bellow in the wind. Skylar glanced towards the notes that were scattered over the floor of her room and knew she couldn't even think about revising any more for the exam and was even considering asking for a different date due to the circumstances. With a sigh, Skylar gathered a blanket and pillow from the hot press before setting up a bed on the living room couch. Sleep was her only escape from this night mare and hope that tomorrow she wakes up and the demon and the mark on her hand would be gone. With the exhaustion that weighted her body down, she fell into a deep sleep.

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by Arkane » Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:00 am

In the morning, Locke awoke with a lazy sigh, the demon inhaling deeply and exhaling in the same fashion. He rolled over, squinting slightly as the bright sun hit his eyes. “Ahh, by the nine hells!,” he gasped, covering his eyes while rubbing them. Sudden bright sunlight always managed to momentarily blind him. Sitting up in bed, he took a moment to allow his eyes to adjust, before realizing he was still in that human girls’ room. To be honest, Locke didn’t really remember much of what happened after he had ate Bill’s heart. He just remembered needing to find a host and here he was. He stood up, stretching slightly, one hand coming up to scratch the side of his fit abdomen in a mild manner, a groggy look still on his face. It was quite the clean room...well aside from the broken window and blood stained sheets.

He glanced at the mess he made of the bed and attempted to remedy the situation by hiding the blood stains under the pillows. With a satified look, Locke began to explore his surroundings, noticing the particular style of the room. It was relatively neat and organized, and had various books and papers scattered about. He picked up one piece of paper and noticed the text scribbled on it. Of course, he didn't know how to read the human language, nor did he realize that his new hosts name was scrawled at the top corner. Making a displeased face at the sheet, he threw it over his shoulder and was about to snoop around some more, when a low rumble could be heard coming from his stomach. Man, he was hungry. The man shook off his jacket, revealing a simple, yet dirty, black t-shirt. Living on the streets would do that. He exited the room and quickly glanced around the second floor, before ending up downstairs in the living room.

And there she was, his new host. He crouched down in front of her and quietly observed her for a moment. She looked so serene just sleeping there, so frail and delicate...at peace. Her blonde hair framed her face perfectly and on her hand he could clearly see the binding mark. In human standards she was quite pretty, but he was a demon and he could care less about that kind of stuff. Choosing not to wake her, went straight to the kitchen and stood in front of the fridge. Locke opened it and peered into it quizzically. He had never seen a fridge before, but he knew this was there a lot of the food humans consumed was stored. Interesting. He crouched down and began examining things. Things were stored in glass jars, others in plastic, and some things were all wrapped up in annoying wrappers. He sniffed at a head of broccoli, before making a disgusted face and tossing it away over his shoulder. He then proceeded to toss away many things that did not suit his tastes. “Hey!!,” he called, yelling for Skylar. “Got anything to eat in here?!” It seemed that consuming Bill’s heart jump started his metabolism after weeks of eating barely anything. Locke could technically go find another human to feast on, but that was so much work. “Human, I’m talking to youuu!” He had no patience, whatsoever. It was a good thing that Skylar's parents weren't around as he was making quite the commotion.

After what felt like forever, he had finally found something edible that was to his liking. Bread. Well, he was sure there was much more appetizing morsels somewhere, but this was all he had right now. It would have to do. “Oh finally,” he said, ripping the package open with his teeth. Slices of bread dropped to the floor in a clumsy manner, before Locke stuffed his mouth with several pieces at once. He was almost finished half the loaf.

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by WackyQuacky » Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:43 am

Even though Skylars sleep was deep, it was filled with nightmares, demons and monsters lurking in dark rooms in every inch of her mind. She could hear herself being called in a harsh barely recognisable voice from within the depths of her nightmarish dreaming. Taking it as a way to escape, she ran towards the voice until she found a door, heavy and hard to move. She threw her weight behind the door until it flew open and she fell into a deep cavern on the other side. As the ground drew closer, Skylar spring up out of her sleep, sitting stark upright on the sofa. It had been many years since Skylar had even had a dream she could remember, never mind a nightmare. Her heart thundered in her chest like someone had attached live wires to it. Closing her eyes, he tried to call her breathing when a clatter from the kitchen shook her once again. Leaning backwards on the sofa, she arched her back over the arm rest to peer into the kitchen, seeing the strange man rummaging through her fridge. Upon seeing him, she rushed to pull the sleeve back from her hand to see the red glowing rune. As promenade as it was the night before, the mark was burnt into her flesh. Realising that she didn't just have an extremely vivid, Skylar let an audiable "Fuck me" escape her lips.

She didn't have long to mourn her sanity, as more clattering and the ripping of a bag sounded from the kitchen. With a heavy sigh, Skylar pulled herself up from the sofa and pulled the lightweight throw she had been using as a blanket over her shoulders and slowly made her way to the kitchen. Standing at the archway into the room, she peaked around the corner to witness the man nearly eat the whole loaf of bread in one, making her feel a little less uneasy to see how clumsy he looked. Skylar crept into the room, keeping her back to the wall as best she could and survayed the mess of the kitchen with dismay. She stood in silence for a short second before clearing her throat and speaking up in a groggy, raspy voice.

"You-youre not going to hurt me, are you?" She knew that if he wanted to, he could have killed me at least fifty times already but the fact she was still alive gave her some faith she was at least safe for now. Despite wanting to keep her distance from the man, her stomach was starting to ache from hunger. Plucking up as much courage as she could, she crept past the man and grabbed the bacon and egg box that he had tossed from the fridge, keeping her eyes on him as much as possible. Some how, the eggs weren't all broken, with at least half the packet still intact. Creeping her way across the room, she set up the pan on the hob and began to make some breakfast. For some reason, she didn't know why she was so calm in the situation but some how, she felt like she wasn't in immediate danger from the man. Despite this, she couldn't stop her voice from shaking as she spoke.

"About this thing on my hand... what is it?"

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by Arkane » Mon Jun 08, 2020 3:54 am

The human world was completely brand new to Locke. He didn’t know how things worked in the human realm. There were so many rules and regulations, not to mention specific formalities known as ‘manners’. His first impression of the human world was from the side of Bill, so his previous teacher left a lot to be desired. All that Locke knew, at that moment, was that he was hungry, and the bread was the first decent edible thing he had found to satiate his hunger. Aside from human hearts of course, but he wanted to survive in the human world, not stick out like a sore thumb. There were other supernatural beings that he rather not come into contact with.

He had just finished his feast, when he heard a feminine voice call out from behind him. Turning around, Locke’s eyes rested on Skylar’s, a crooked grin spreading across his lips. “Nah, I need you alive,” he replied, patting his chest with a closed fist. He needed some water or something. An eyebrow raised as he watched Skylar bravely traipse into the kitchen, making sure to keep a healthy amount of space between them. He noticed her grabbing a carton of white oval things he had tossed previously, along with a slab of meat that was wrapping in an annoying sheath of plastic. “Are you cooking?,” he asked, almost innocently, the demon coming to stand beside her and look at over at the hob curiously. He just ate an unhealthy amount of bread, but he could still continue devouring more sustenance.

When he was like this, it almost seemed like Locke wasn’t a demon at all. He appeared human enough, save for the subtle characteristics that belonged to his true nature; like his more prominently pointed canines, sharpened, clawed fingernails, and the horn-like stubs that were almost hidden by his dark, messy locks on either side of his head. If he took a proper bath, one might even call him handsome. Momentarily distracted by the prospects of more food, he averted his attention back to her when she asked about the mark on her hand.

“Right, that,” he sighed, a bit annoyed now. He was terrible at explaining such important things, but he figured it was good to get it over with now, instead of having to hear her ask about it over and over again. They were about to spend a lot of time together, after all. He glanced down at her, the demon now circling her like a predator, his dark green eyes looking at her up and down. Such a small human. She didn’t looked strong at all and he’d probably have his work cut out for him trying to keep her alive. “You’ll do for now,” he muttered, his hand coming up to briefly touch end of a lock of her hair. Leaning against the counter now, he crossed his arms over his chest and furrowed his brow.

“Listen human, you’re mine now,” he began, a serious expression on his face. “That mark is a binding mark,” he continued, pointing to the matching mark on his neck. “I need you and your life-force to survive in the human realm cause I got kicked out of the demon realm for whatever reason. The point is, blondie, that we’re connected you and I, so you can’t just go and do whatever you want anymore. Your life is my life and now that we’re connected, your soul is gunna look pretty appetizing to some of the others,” he said, in a casual, noncommittal sort of way.

Truth be told, Locke couldn’t remember why he was kicked out of the demon realm. In fact, he couldn’t remember who he even was, save for the basics. Whenever he thought about his life as a demon in the demon realm a sort of hazy fog blanketed his mind. Probably some side effect of the curse, but the human didn’t need to know about that.

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by WackyQuacky » Mon Jun 08, 2020 1:29 pm



Using the back of a spatula, Skylar pushed the bacon and eggs around the pan. For something a little quicker, she would have made some French toast but she didn’t think there would be enough fresh bread left over after the demon had near devoured a full loaf, leaving only crumbs to show it had ever existed.  At least now she knew that she was not going to be killed as soon as her guard is down, at least which she is still useful to him. She glanced over at him over her shoulder seeing he looked a little uncomfortable as he hit his chest. Taking a moment to realise what it was, she left the pan briefly to pour a glass of water and set it on the island, making sure it was at least an arm’s length away from her, feeling unsettled still. Even though he said he was not going to hurt her, it was natural for humans to be unsettled by something they aren’t used to.

Picking the spatula back up again, she heard his inquisitive voice behind her. After seeing him finish off the bread, Skylar didn’t think that he would still be hungry she didn’t know how much food demons ate so, with that, she cracked another egg and a few more slices of bacon into the pan. The oil shot out everywhere around her, somehow some splashing onto her exposed neck and her upper chest.  She was too preoccupied with trying to dodge the oil that she hadn’t realised that the demon had begun to walk over to where she was standing beside her until she caught a glimpse of him peering to the pan out of the corner of her eye. If she didn’t pay attention, she would have thought it was her dad or a random boy from her school if it wasn’t for the small demonic features that made her pulse race in fear. Trying her best to calm her heart and stop herself from shaking, Skylar took a deep breath in and out.

Her breathing didn’t help much when he began to pace around her, Skylar’s muscles tensing up and clutching the spatula close to her chest. She felt threatened no matter his reassurance that she wasn’t going to be killed. Either way, the image of a cat toying with its pray before they kill it flashed through her mind with his playful nature, his soft muttering accompanying the touch of her hair sending a strong chill down her spine that she nearly had to fight herself to not jump forward into the pan. Once he had stopped his circling and leant against the counter, Skylar kept her eyes trained on the pan ahead and poked the egg yolk with the corner of the spatula, watching it burst and fry against the pan.

Her skin went cold at the very first sentence, ‘You’re mine now’. Does that mean she was trapped? She needed his say to do something or was he like a living ball and chain to her now. By the time he had finished explaining, she had more questions than answers. Was she going to be attacked by other demons? Why was he kicked out of the demon realm? and was the man whose heart he ate last night another person he was binded to? It was over whelming but asking him about that all right now didn’t seem like it was a good idea, the agitation in his tone telling her that she shouldn’t flood him with questions. She looked down at the hand that held the spatula to see the strange rune pulsing red as her blood passing under it through veins. It felt so unreal being part of this, knowing that if someone else told her that they were bonded to a demon that feeds off their life force and now other demons were drawn to them to try and devour them, she would have ran the other direction. It just felt like a strange dream but the spitting oil that flew from the pan and hit her hands hurt too much for it to be a dream.

The memory of the exam sprung back into her mind, prompting her to hurry up and get ready for school. Going by the clock that hung on the wall above the door, it was only ten to seven in the morning, an hour or so before she had to start walking to school, but she wanted to look through some of the notes she had accumulated before heading in. Taking two plates, she divided up the contents of the pan, placing an egg and a few slices of bacon onto each, and set the plates on the island. Taking her plate and moving away from the man, she sat at one of the bar stools with a knife and fork before she finally spoke again.

“My name is Skylar, not blondie. I guess, if we have to stick together, I should know what to call you rather than demon.” She took a bite out of a strip of bacon, moving her eyes from the man to the mess on the floor where he had thrown everything from the fridge onto the floor. “Also, can other people see you? My mum and dad didn’t seem to last night, along with the mark on the back of my hand.”

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by Arkane » Tue Jun 09, 2020 4:31 pm

The curse, as Locke called it, was unique. Unique in such a way that he was probably the only demon that needed a human host to survive in the human realm....as far as he could tell. All the other demons that were visiting the human realm got to come and go as they pleased, unhindered in their ability to use their powers. Such was not the case for Locke. Not only could he not remember how in the nine hells he got the curse, or who he even was before the curse was placed on him, but he also needed a human to survive and use his powers. It was such a pain, not to mention a huge embarrassment. In a sense, they were both prisoners to a curse he didn't know how to break.

“And that basically sums it up,” he finished, now much more preoccupied with the serving of food she had dished up for him. There was so much more information that would have been helpful for Skylar to know, but he chose not to inform her of any of it. She’d figure it out, eventually. As Skylar sat down to eat, Locke remained across from her, the island separating the two of them. He pulled the plate closer to him, picked up the fork, and began shovelling the food into his mouth. “Damn, human food is pretty good,” he grinned in his contentment.

“Course we have to stick together, human. Er, Skylar, whatever you call yourself,” he said, in between bites of food. He ripped a piece of bacon with his sharpened teeth, finished off his meal in a few more bites, and then shot back the glass of water in one gulp. “I guess I’m called Locke,” he replied, that familiar fuzziness clouding his mind as he tried to remember his past. The fogginess passed as soon as he stopped trying to access his memories, the demon now distracted with answering Skylar’s last question.

“Nah, other humans can’t see me,” Locke said, making eye contact with her. “At least, as far as I know. I can appear before them if I wanted too. And some humans have the Sight, so they can see everything.” He stepped over the contents of the fridge that were littered across the kitchen floor, and stepped into the living room. Nice place. A definite upgrade to the various alleyways he had been sleeping in the last few weeks.

“So, human,” he asked, examining one of Skylar’s family photos that was placed on the fireplace mantle. “What’s your plans for the day?” Because he’d definitely be going with her. He couldn’t just let his host wander around, defenceless.

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Re: In the Shadows (WackyQuacky)

Post by WackyQuacky » Tue Jun 09, 2020 5:18 pm

Locke. It made her want to laugh a little, thinking a demons name would have been more grand or fear indusing, like Balam, or Gremory. The demons from movies had clearly fed her with false expectations. Still, she tried her best to hide her upturning lips. The mention of 'the sight' intrigued her though. That meant that she wasn't the only one who could see the demons. For years she had thought she was going crazy but now she didn't feel like her mind was fried from too many horror movies as a child.

Once Skylar had finished her breakfast, she set about clearing the dishes and cutlery into the washing machine. Having washed off her hands of any oil that many still be sticking to her skin from the pan, she lifted as much of the salvageable food from the floor and placed it away in the fridge and cupboards, placing anything that was destroyed or empty into the bin. After school, she figured stopping by the shop would be necessary to stop the questions from her parents about where all the bread went. It wouldn't be believable if she said she used a whole bag of bread on French toast all to herself. The clock that hung over the door kept her panicked enough about revising and getting to school in time, she barely had time to let the food settle in her stomach before she began to head for the stairs to her room. It was a strange situation to be in but that didn't stop her from completely her degree. She didn't think they would accept "Demon ate my revision work" as reason to put off the exam.

"Well, I have an exam in an hour in school, which I guess you will have to come with me too." She stopped half way on the stairs and thought for a second, glancing back to look at him before continuing up the stairs, "I don't suppose you know anything about immunology, do you?". It was definitely a silly question on her part and she continued up the stairs to her room, nudging it open and looking at dismay at the mess that still littered the floor. The papers she had gathered into a neat pile were blown about the room like a tornado had ripped through it due to the broken window. Several things had fallen from her selves and dresser and her bed was a mess and slightly dirty from the mud that rubbed off Lockes clothes. With a heavy sigh, she started lifting the papers from the floor, realising that she wouldn't have enough time to sort her room out before school. Yanking the blanket and pillows from the bed, the dust and dirt falling off the quilt, an idea came to her mind. It had seemed that Locke was able to interact with things normally so maybe, he wouldn't track dirt everywhere if he had a shower.

Finishing taking the blankets and pillow cases from the bed and throwing them into the wash basket, Skylar walked into the bathroom and turned on the shower. She called out of the room to Locke, testing the water against her hand out of impulse. "You don't desolve in water, do you?" Dropping a few towels on the ground and gathering some clothes from her dad's wardrobe, she walked from the bathroom. She really didn't want to have to keep cleaning up dirt all the time from him as he walked around, the floor on her room already dusty enough that her had to mop it. "Take a shower. The soap and shampoo are in the shower rack, work away. And there are some of my dad's clothes on the edge of the bath. They might be a little too big, I don't even know if you can change clothes, but they can do so you aren't in dirty clothes for now".

With that, Skylar stepped into her room and sat down at the desk, taking the piles of notes in her hands and flicking through them, praying to develop a photographic memory in the next twenty minutes. Truth be told, somehow, the exam was stressing her out more than the fact she had a demon attached to her. The college she had gotten into was too expensive and too highly reviewed that she couldn't afford to do badly in her exams.

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