The Stone Whispers
By N.S. Tanner
Chapter one: Kitty
The sky was a perfect mixture of colors, warm and exciting. My heart pounded in my chest as I stepped forward into the lush greens of the clearing. The trees were swaying with the breeze and the sun was casting a warm blanket over my skin. Casting a feeling of safety around me as I raced through the high grasses of Greene Orchards…
"Okay class, I hope you all have a wonderful weekend, I will see you on Monday, and please...don't forget to practice, and OH your papers are due Tuesday!"
Of course, Mr. Reyburn's voice always carried off through lala land. I shut my notebook closed as other students around me gathered their things together and mobbed out of the classroom. Perfect days, sunny blankets of safety and blue sky's would just have to wait until another lifetime.
The rain patted onto the grounds of Arealynn Academy, it was curious to watch the oh so wondrous student's scurrying around the grounds screaming and trotting off in every direction to get out from the dampness. Don't get me wrong, I like the rain, but at the rate it rains here, I could honestly say if you said it would be sunny all day long tomorrow, I wouldn't believe you. It was hardly ever ALWAYS sunny here at Arealynn. I've been here since my seventh birthday, when I amorously found out I was able to camouflage myself into anything I was next to. Almost like being invisible, like how I felt around him...
"Katrina." Pulling my gaze from the dampening grounds, I turned my attention to Mr. Reyburn. His eyebrow was raised; an expectant expression filled his features. We sat like that a moment until my gaze shifted around the room. Everyone had left, apparently I had drifted away in my own mind again. With a clearing of my throat I , excused myself and continued out of the classroom with my apple green backpack riding over my left shoulder, lightly bumping back and forth on my mid back as I made my way down the hall of the west corridor of level 3. It seemed dead at the moment, like an episode of Twilight Zone, you know, the old black and white television show you used to watch when you were sick at home sitting on the couch with your favorite blanket, a bowl of soup, and your mother prodding your mouth with that glass thermometer that you were always afraid to keep in your mouth hoping it wouldn't break.
I made a right, deciding to head down to the basement where I usually felt safer from the rest of the students. A clicking noise stopped me from continuing on unfortunantly. I should have continued on with my destination, but my curiosity got the best of me. Backtracking about four strides and a halt I landed myself in front of the stairs leading up to the next level. Level four didn't have classes in the evening, which is why my curiosity caught me in the moment. My hand grasped the brass knob of the door, turning it after a short intake of breath. The door squeaked open as I slowly pushed it in. The stairwell was dimly lit, not giving me much visibility. There it was again, the clicking, I shifted my gaze upwards...it was coming from above. I should have just gone back but, I am Katrina Frenntt, I explored a bit more than I should have. Curiosity didn’t scare this kitten, nope. Not me.
The door clicked shut behind me as I let it go and stepped into the stairwell. The concrete walls surrounding the vertical square pathway caused a claustrophobic atmosphere, which I didn't like. My foot stepped forward onto the first step to the next landing and I continued my way up.
No answer. Passing the fourth landing, the fifth, the sixth, the seventh, the clicking got louder but I couldn't find the cause of it. It got louder, and louder and louder, my heartbeat racing faster and faster, my feet hitting the steps less and less as I quickened my pace up the stairs.... and then it stopped. Total, silence. I stopped, now the only sound I could hear was my heart beating and the breath admitting from me. I couldn’t tell which one was more deafening.
"What are you doing here?"
I whipped around, the sudden appearance of another life form in the area caused me to stumble backwards hitting the railing of the landing and landing on my bum. Well if that wasn’t more embarrassing then this should top it off. As I turned my head upwards, my cheeks were tinted with pink. Jack Kresht was standing over me with a raised brow.
"Are you going to answer me?"
My mouth opened and closed a few times, the words not coming through my lips, just incoherent sounds. Jack's eyes rolled and he lent a hand out for me to take, I hesitated a moment. Finally I took a hold of his offered hand and he pulled me up to a wobbly standing position. I in took a breath, finally speaking.
"I could ask you the same question."
His eyes traveled upon my locket hanging loosely around my neck, the light silver heart shaped locket that my brother had given me for my birthday when I was 8. Dani, he was such a wonderful person, He was a year older then I, Level 5 in his ability. My locket contained two pictures, one of my brother and one I had taken of the boy I had liked since we first arrived here at Arealynn. My hand mindlessly moved to touch the locket on my chest, my fingers grazing it lightly.
Clearing his throat, Jack gave an irritated sigh. "I was smoking."
----Story break, Into Third person-----
Her eyes darted up to look at Jack. "I didn't know you smoked."
"That was kind of the point, no one does, not even my brothers." he stated quite clearly, and he intended to keep it that way. "Tell anyone and I'll make your life hell."
Kitty nodded casually. Like she would tell anyone, she hardly talked to anyone he would most likely know, her best friend was Kareena, and her brother Dani. Another chill shot through her body as he opened the door behind him and started to walk in. Kitty didn’t think she would see him again after this, seeing as he was popular with his brothers in the Academy and she wasn’t. Man did he prove her wrong; Clearing his throat again he waited for her to do something, when she didn’t move he rolled his eyes and let out sigh that had a hit of irritation from moments ago within it.
"Are you coming, or what?"
If the air wasn’t already cold she would deffinantly say it sure got cool fast. She crossed her arms around her chest; the bag on her back following behind as it continued it’s bouncing on her mid-back. Three long strides and she was through the door, passed Jack Kresht and into the hallway of level 9. The floor looked the same as all of the others below them. This was the West wing of campus, North wing was a Girls dormitory, East wing was Staff and other personnel headquarters and living space, and also basic training was held on level 4 of the East wing, South wing was a Boys dormitory. It was all confusing for the most part, but living here for a few years they got used to it. No one knew anything beyond their level and the levels they've passed already. In the West wing, they didn’t know anything beyond level 9, this wing was the school building, their training, classes, and control practices.
Looking beyond the dim lit area, she could see the covered, once used windows of level 9. It was dead, the whole floor, level 9 had stopped being used due to the accident last summer when a student at the academy had gone missing. Honestly all she could think about right now was where the person went, how does someone disappear? This was level nine; there were no other levels above.
"Didn't someone die here?" Jack asked, his voice trailing along uneasiness and curiosity. Kitty turned her head, seeing his outline, his hands in his pockets, his gaze had wondered onto her face.
"They disappeared," she corrected him. "No one found a body, therefore no one knows if they died or not."
Jack rolled his eyes at her correction. "It's the same thing."
"No it's not." Kitty snapped.
"Cool it kitten, no need to claw my head off." He took a step to the side and walked around her.
"Well if you weren’t being so stupid..."
"...Shh." he hushed her. there it was again, the same clicking noise that had Kitty shuffling up those flight of stair in the first place. Her eyes widened and she snapped her head to look at Jack.
"I thought that was you."
"I thought that was you." he reciprocated. "If that wasn't you, and it wasn't me..."
Kitty stood herself straight in her standing position. "There has to be a source to that noise."
The clicking got louder, causing Jack to jump a bit.
Jack shot her a glare. "No!"
"Okay.." she said unbelievingly as she concentrated and blended into the wall. The noise sounded like the clicking of oldies style heels that secretary women would wear. Jack bit back a squeak as he was pulled against the wall by a hand and he shut his eyes. The clicking became unbearably loud for their tastes, and the hand clamped around his arm tighter, and then, it stopped. It disappeared and the hand around Jack's arm loosened. It took a moment or two for him to regain his senses, finally pushing off the wall and a body following with him. He turned to face Kitty, who let her hand fall from its current grip on his arm. She faded back into her normal form, opening her eyes but seeing no one.
Kitty furrowed her brow, lifting a hand to what she couldn't see and felt it touch a solid form of a chest. Realizing he had used his ability he closed his eyes, her hand still resting on his chest. He left his form of invisibility and became visible again, reopening his eyes.
"You're ability is-"
"-Invisibility." he finished. "Yeah."
Kitty pulled her hand back and crossed her arms with a charming smile. Jack returned it slightly, which turned into more of a smirk.
"So, you are what, a chameleon or something?"
Kitty shrugged with a grin. "or Something."
Chapter 2: Jack
It took a while for the sun to rise and push the moon out of the way to the other side of the world. So I took the time to star out at the sky from the window of the girls dorm I shared with Kara. I don't know how long I’ve been sitting here but the black splatter painted sky of stars slowly started to turn to gray, tinted with its navy blue contrast of the ocean. Grabbing the tiger fleece blanket Kara had gave me for Christmas the previous year, I pulled it over my legs, tucking my feet under a portion of it so they could defrost. It was curious how tired I should have been, but I wasn't. I had been up all night, since I had parted with Jack Kresht at the West Wing building. Who knows how long it would have taken me to say a word to him before now. If he hadn't asked what I was doing up in the ninth floor stairwell landing I would have never bothered to say a word to him, just admire him from a far like I always did. It was the first time, the previous evening, that I had ever had a glimpse of Jack's Ability. Never once did I ever understand why he would disappear randomly during a class, or during lunch and leave everyone behind to be in his own world of power.
"Huh..." I muttered to myself, as not to wake Kara who was sleeping soundly across the room with her blue and yellow polka dotted silk pajama covered back towards me. "Invisibility..."
It seriously was hard to believe, No one in the Academy had the power of invisibility, therefore I had never witnessed anything personally besides a Saturday morning cartoon comic that may have specified the "Invisible Man" once...or maybe that was a movie. I couldn't remember at the moment, but perhaps it was a movie. I let out a long sigh as the sky became lighter, turning my eyes towards the digital clock built into Kara's Ipod charger, speaker system on the oak dresser.
Well, at least it was the weekend, no classes today.
The alarm went off at 8:15, a large thump hitting the floor. I jolted upright causing the fleece tiger blanket to fall off of my chest to my waist. My breathing was rapid as was my heartbeat; a groan caused me to turn my head towards my left, trailing down from the empty bed to the floor, where Kara was sitting on the floor rubbing her bum. The sight of her tousled hazel brown hair and blue and yellow polka dot silk pajamas cause my lips to upturn into a grin and I let out a chuckle.
Kara turned to face me with a glare, which didn't last long because moments later she joined my out coming laughter and me.
"That was priceless." I managed to get out through the fits of laughter escaping my body.
It took us a while but the laughter finally died down, tears falling from laughing so hard. Kara wiped her eyes, catching her breath and pulled herself up using the bed. She moved over to the dresser and shut off the alarm that was still beeping loudly. The ringing from the beeps in my ear faded away and I gave a sigh of relief and plopped back onto my bed, looking up at the ceiling.
"Ah, sweet freedom." I laughed.
Kara gave a laugh and shook her head with a wide grin as she pulled a drawer open in her dresser and yanked out a pair of faded blue jeans, tossing them onto her bed with her left hand while she closed the drawer and opened another one with her right. She fumbled around in the drawer for a few minutes, while I lay there on my bed and stared at a little speck on the ceiling.
"Aha!" Kara pulled out a blue polo shirt triumphantly and tossed it on the bed, before she grabbed a pair of faded pink undergarments and matching socks. As she leaned down to grab her buckle up shoes she muttered something that I didn't catch. So turning my head I looked over in her direction and furrowed my brow.
Kara leaned back up and put the shoes on the clothes and picked the pile up in her arms. "I'm going to take a shower, then go to breakfast."
She gave me a smile and walked over to the door, I turned my head back up to the ceiling and shut my eyes; it took me a few moments to realize I never heard the door click shut and I opened my eyes to look towards the door, which was slightly ajar. With a groan I shifted and pulled myself out of bed, walking over to solid oak rectangle that was hinged to the opening in the wall. Sighing I shut the door and turning to walk back to my bed. As a slight breeze caught my bare feed on the hardwood floor I slowed to a stop and turned my head behind me. The door was ajar, again.
"What the hell." I cursed under my breath as I walked back and shut the door again, this time with more force, and locking it. I turned back around and headed back to my bed, settling back in it, my eyes on the door and the fleece blanket covering me.
The sun was rising, causing the sky to turn gray, the stars fading away into their hiding places. It was the most irritating view to watch after spending half of the evening talking, screaming, and getting lost. So yeah, I spent part of the evening after classes were over with Kitty Frenntt on level 9, so what? It's not like anyone would know but us... I let out a long sigh as I sat back against the wall on my side of the room, the bed underneath me sinking slightly. I must admit, this was not the most comfortable of positions, but I was having a pretty hard time sleeping, especially with my roommate, the annoying, nerdy, Cridden Dumouss.
This boy slept like a rock, he wouldn’t wake up for shit through the night, and the only way I've ever been able to wake him during a school morning was by dragging him out of his bed, down the hall to the boys showers, and run him under ice cold water, yeah that got his butt up quickly. After while I began to just let him sleep, hell it wasn’t my job to wake his butt up every flipping morning or every day.
As he blatantly slept, I leaned up against the wall my bed was on and stared longingly out the now lighter sky. Thankfully it was Saturday, however I still had schoolwork to do. The Physics essay. There were few others in my class who even knew how to really understand physics, hell even my own teacher; Mr. Reyburn didn't seem to know it half the time. Either that or he really was just playing stupid. But...there was one other in the class, who I noticed knows this like the top of her hand. Maybe I should just ask her for help, she DID know that I was smoking. And no one knew about that, no one, and for good reason.
I started about 18 months ago, a few months before my brothers and I landed us here cause of our abilities. I could never keep friends long enough anyway, not that I had any here at Arealynn. This I would blame on my brothers, and the power. Yes, I felt invisible anyway, which is the reason I hate being able to turn invisible. Turning invisible was just the affirmation that I was already invisible in the first place. Actions speak louder than words, well screw you actions.
My head turned toward the clock above the doorway, 5:42. Well, instead of venting to myself as always I decided to just get up.
Careful not to trip on anything in the room, I moved off of the bed and towards my dresser, gently pulling it away from the wall and reaching my hand behind it. I felt around for a moment or two before I stopped and pulled back my hand now holding a pack of smokes. I slowly pulled one out and then put the pack back behind the dresser under the wood and pushed the dresser back against the wall with a slight thud. I cringed but relaxed, still hearing Cridden snoring away. These were the reasons why I kinda thanked God for a loud roommate.
Grabbing the one cigarette and tucking it the pocket of my zip-up sweater that I just pulled on, I pulled on a pair of jeans that I slipped my Zippo into, and my converse and snuck my way out of the dorm room. The hallway was dead, as always on a Saturday morning, everyone was sleeping away.
I continued my way down the hall and down the main flight of stairs to the base room and out onto the grounds where I snuck over to the west wing building. With one final look around in the midst of the foggy grayness of the now awakening morning I pulled open the back door of the west wing and started up the flight of stairs till I got to the 9th floor landing and opened the door, walking down the hall to the old abandoned history classroom and opened the window slightly. The slight breeze caught me off guard and I shivered, the air biting at the bare skin of my chest. Zipping up the sweater more, I pulled out the cigarette and the Zippo out of my pockets and put it to my lips, lighting it up.
The first inhale felt nice, the feeling of calmness flowing through me. Sure, I knew that these cancer sticks would most likely kill me someday, but for now, I really didn’t care.
Creaky old floorboards
The door started to creek again, Kitty wrapped up in the fleece blanket glaring towards it. this door was seriously getting on her nerves, not to mention she was trembling in what she may have called fear, either that or the chill easing itself into the room. She shut her eyes, trying to block it out.
Come on Katrina, this is nothing to be freaking about, its just a door that needs to be fixed, that’s all.
As she thought this to herself, a faint sound started to erupt from down the hall. At first Kitty couldn’t quite grasp what it was, but as her ears started to strain, they adjusted to the well known sound of clicking heels on hardwood. Her eyes snapped open, this was not the sound she was hoping to hear, and she was hoping to hear anything but that.
Swinging her feet off of the bed, she hopped off, letting the fleece blanket fall around her feet, and she ran to the creaked open door, swinging it open and stepping into the hall.
"Hello?" Kitty turned her head to her left towards the end of the hall, nothing, then she turned to the right, again nothing. "Hello, is anyone there?"
The clicking still sounded faint, and she turned back to her left, and walked quickly down the hallway towards the window facing the west wing. IF it was not coming from this wing then it must have been coming from the west wing building the same as the night before. As she reached the window she placed a small hand apon it, wiping the moisture from it somewhat and peering out.
It was foggy, not giving her much ability to see. Man if she could control weather she would so do it right now. However, she could not, so she took the liberty to continue down the hall to her right to the stairwell and down to the base room of the Girls North wing building, and opened the door to the grounds.
As she looked around in the fog she gave an irritated sigh at not seeing much of anything. Well it's the West wing building so ...turn West. Kitty turned to her left until she saw the teacher's building coming into view. Other left..
She turned back the other way, continuing through the fog. It wasn't until her bare feet hit the wet grass that she realized she hadn't put on shoes. She pushed the thoughts of her feet becoming frozen through the cold and dampness of the grass and the outside, and pushed herself to speed up.
She let out a choked breath, her lungs were freezing with the bitterness of the early morning weather, it was already 8:28. This was something she obviously would think weird, seeing as no one was up, but normally her and Kara were the first ones to wake up anyway. Breakfast didn't start till 9:00 am on the weekends, do to over half of the student body slept till like 10, or all day.
Taking in a nother breath of sharp cold air she ran her hands forward in front of her, trying to find a solid object, hopefully a door. With a deep breath she moved around in stiff movements.
"Where the...where is the damn thing!" she muttered, cursing the cold. "COME ON!!!!"
Finally, her hand hit the handle of the door, and without hesitation she yanked it open, stepping inside. The temperature was slightly warmer inside, only because there wasn't fog, wind, or damp grass.
Click, click, click...
Kitty froze in her spot just inside the door. There it was again, but it didn't sound like it was in the base room of the building, it was coming from above her. Her eyes traveled towards the ceiling,then down the hall. She turned and walked for the stairwell door. After about 40 yards down the hall sh pulled a door open and walked in. The familiar breeze of the concrete box of stairs surrounded her and she groaned. Why didn't I think of grabbing a sweater or shoes? Both would have been just fine with me...oh yeah...because weird sounds were distracting me...hmm... when I find the cause of this, i will have a nice long 'talk' with them. She thought inwardly, glaring at nothing and climbing the stairs.
Her thoughts traveled to the previous evening, when she had climbed the same stairs, only there wern't as many to climb then, yes even two or three levels that you don't have to climb made a diffrence in her opinion. The only part she didn't complain about was Jack. She had gotten to spend time with him, even if it only for a little while, dis including the part where they freaked out of course.
By the time she reached level 9, her feet had gone numb from the cold of the concrete steps. She shakily grasped the door handle and turned it, pushed open the door with caution, and peered into the hallway. Nothing. She took in a breath, walking into the hall, the sound of the door clicking shut behind her echoed though the hall, causing her to cringe.
Another shiver traveled up her spine, but this time it wasn;t because of the cold. She felt like she was being watched, and immediatly she started to look around.
"Hello....is someone there?"
No one answered which caused her heart to race faster. The clicking she had followed so irritatingly up here had started up again, which just made her turn and run down the hall. Looking back, she barely saw something turn the corner at the far opposite side of the hall, as a firm hand grabbed hold of her arm and yanked her through a door. She stumbled into the room and heard a click of a lock before she spun around to see the capture..or savior, she hadn;t decided yet.
However, there was nothing there, and that brought two ideas or who it could have been to her head. Either one... whatever was in this building that kept them following it was in this room, or two...it was Jack.
"Jack..." she whispered hoarsley, a bit uneasy at the answer it would elict from the entity in the room. At first nothing happened, but as she moved forward a few steps towards the door she felt something pull her back slowly, and then she realized she couldn;t see her own hand infront of her. She was blending into the room..but she normally couldnt do that unless it was with only one object, not a whole room...
"Shh." She heard a soft whisper in her ear and warm breath on her neck.
Kitty decided that perhaps she should just do as told and be quiet. She couldn't understand why they were standing there, nothing was happeneing, she was about ready to pull away from whoever was holding her when the clicking started to pass the door. She had to put her hand to mouth to stop from making any noise as a shadow started to pass under the door. She shut her eyes, this was ridiculous, how much fear was radiating from her at the moment.Slowly, the clicking of the heels started to fade away, until it was completely gone. Her hand feel from her mouth and she took a heavy intake of breath.
"Are you okay..."
Kitty turned to her right, coming into her view was a formation of a boy, the transperency fading slowly until he was in his full form of visibility. She let out a sigh as she looked at her hands, they were now visible, as was the rest of her.
"Jack..." she whispered.
He raised his hand to lift her chin. "Are you, okay?" He asked once again. She took a moment before she nodded her head, her eyes looking up towards him.
"What were you doing up here?"
Jack dropped his hand and crossed his arms. "I could ask you the same thing." He smirked.
She rolled her eyes and let out a small laugh. "I felt like taking a walk..."
"In a tanktop, a pajama bottoms?"
Kitty nodded slowly. "Yeah....gets the blood pumping."
"Right." he nodded with a small grin.
It was a suprise I admit, to come up here and be saved my Jack Kresht, you know, the whole yanking me into an old history classroom and saving me from an evil sounding heel clicking shadowy figure that keeps distracting us from everything.
"Did you hear that?"
I lifted my head towards Jack, we had left the class room a while ago and were heading down the hallway slowly. It hdn't accured to me to really be on the look out for anything, esspecially the noise, or the shadows we had saw a short while ago.
Jack was gazing at the ceiling, a contemplative look on his face, which cause my eyes to aslo turn their gaze toward the ceiling.
Jack gave no response, instead he started to move towards the door to the stairwell, and opened it, starting up the next flight of stairs. I litterally had to fly if I were to catch up with him.
"Jack.." I called after him, The door closed and I screamed after him now. "JACK!"
I ran to the door and pulled it open, fleeing into the stairwell and trotting up the stairs. "God dammit Jack, where the hell are you going?!" I cursed under my breath as I finally stopped and leaned over the railing to look up to see which level landing he was at, I didn't see him so I turned to face down. Nothing that I could see below. With an aggravated sigh I started to continue up. I hit the roof landing and stopped.
"Jack!!!" I almost had a panic attack, he was gone. I hit the wall of the landing angrily. "UGH!" I let out another sigh and wentto hit my hand to the wall again but it was stopped. I rolled my eyes and then hit what I knew I couldnt see, hittomg a body.
"Dammit Jack don't do that!"
Jack came into view and I glared at him. "What did you do that for!"
"You dissapeared on me! AGAIN."
Jack let out a slight chuckle at my aggrivation. "Aww is someone a bit flustered?"
"Oh shut up." a flush rising to my cheeks as I pouted and then changed the subject. "Where did you go?"
"Out there." He pointed a hitchhiket towards the door leading onto the roof, which caused me to furrow my brow.
"The roof?" I asked in curiosity. "Did you follow the noise you heard to the roof?"
"Well not exactly, it stopped once I passed the 12th floor, but I was trying to catch up to the noise before I lost it completely, unfortunantly I havn't heard it since I got up here." He responded quite displeased.
With a long sigh I turned towards the door leading out onto the roof of the west wing building andthen back toward Jack. "Well, shall we take on last look?"
Jack shook his head as I tried to give him a smile. "Nah, let's just go, you should go back and change into something warm anyway." He looked at my bare feet, my toes curling due to the cold concrete underneath them. I gave a nod and started to decend the stairs.
We both decended in silence until we passed around level 2, in which Jack had let out an irritated sigh and stopped as we hit the last flight of stairs that would lead down to the base level. I stopped a few staps after he did and turned towards him with a confused look.
Jack looked away from me, scratting the back of his head of curls. Maybe I should tell her...I mean before we head out, because then there will be people, and..
Fuck.."Nothing." He started to continue down the stairs, moving past me and I stood there a moment before following him. I was a bit confused but shrugged it off as we departed the building out the back door and moved through the unfogging grounds towards the dinning hall, completely forgetting about heading back to my dormitory to grabb some shoes and a sweater.
As we entered I moved to sit next to Kara and Jack moved away without a word to grab something to eat. I slid into the seat, looking up to see Kara,and two other girls who I kept forgetting names lookign at me in mid spoonful of food.
"What?!" I asked, uncomfortably.
"Was that Jack Kresht you just walked through the door with?" one of the girls asked. I shrugged and took a peice of toast Kara had handed me.
"He's Jake and Josh's brother isn't he? the other girl asked. I think I recognized her as I looked through my tired eyes. I nodded, taking a bite of the toast.
"Wow, does he know if Jake is single?" the first girl asked, and I chuckled.
"Wow, do you think you could maybe...ask him for me?"
"What..it was just a question! And don't use my full name I hate it!" she glared at Kara.
"Come off it Em." Kara said as she ate her food.
I looked up at the girl next to Emerald...Em wit ha questioning look. "Excuse me?"
"My name's Aileen." she said, not looking at me.
"Oh, yeah Aileens a mind reader by the way..."
I nodded. "So I noticed."
I finished the piece of toast and sighed, this was just getting more interesting my the minute.
Chapter 6: Jack
"Who was that?"
I looked up at Josh who was looking at me over his roll holding hand which was propt up to his face lazily. I was assuming he ment who walked in next to me and parted to the opposite side of the room. With a slight shrug I didn't verbally answer his question, which in my opinion was really non of his damn buisness, and kept walking for the dining trays. I looked over the large amounts of food and stood there for about three seconds total before just reaching out and grabbing an orange juice, a peice of sausage, and two peices of toast with rasberry jam. Shoving a pice of toast in my mouth, i carried the rest with me to a corner of the room, and as no one seemed to notice, I walked right passed the table in which my brothers were currently sitting at, and continued towards the door.
A shiver of realization hit Katrina Frentt as the invisible Jack walked past her, even though she could not see him she felt him. Something was off...
Are you feeling okay?
Kitty gazed up at Aileen who was gazing at Kitty with a meaninful look.Still a bit out of it from lack of sleep, Kitty forced a smile, and sliding out of the seat next to Kara, who in turn looked up at her with a strange look.
"Where are you going.?" Kitty looked at her feet and shrugged.
"To change, and maybe take a nap..." and with that she just left without another word and walked out of the Dinning hall. The fog was still in the proccess of fading but Kitty knew it wouldn't have made a diffrence. So with a long wigh she moved through the a new patch of cold, damp grass, and strutted through the grounds.
"Jack, where are you..." she hissed, she didn't hear a response which caused her to get slightly agravated, so she decided that she would head back to her dorm room in hopes to look find him with thawed out feet.
Jack could sense her presence coming near him, and sure neough when he looked up from the bench he was sitting on, he saw her pass by. When he heard his name he made no movement to follow, or get up. He was beggining to get soft again, and whether he realized it or not, he wasn't attracted to her sexually, it was something about how she treated him...like he was her friend. And that...it what scared him to death.
He had no friend, no exactly, sure he hung around people, sometimes...okay very rarely, and his own roommate was to dorky to hang with him...and that wasn't his fault, it was how Jack was raised.
He leaned back against the bench and sighed, shoving the rest of the contents of food into his mouth. It took him a moment or two before he pushed himself up and walked after Kitty.
The hardwood floor creeked under her bare feet as Kitty walked down the hallway and to her door, where she opened it and walked in.
"Well, at least it finally closed."
She pulled out a pair of pants and a tshirt, pulling them on and a pair of socks, her red converse, and her favorite plaid sweater, which was a relief from the cold air. It was a few moments before she took them off again and grabbed a towel.
"Okay, a shower sounds sooo much better right now." She admited to herself aloud and grabbed her clothes with the towel wrapped around her and headed out of her room down the hall to the showers.
Jack had his hand over his eyes, even through she couldnt see him and obviously he could have gotten away with it, but he was shy in that aspect, something his brothers wern't..well that he knew of, and so out of respect, and to keep himself from turning into a tomato, covered his eyes.
When he heard her leave after saying she needed a shower, he took a moment before heading after her. He of course would wait outside, but if he stayed in the room, he didn;t know if she would return.
It's not nice to stalk people.
Jack froze...okay..now..he was freaked.
Far from home
Jack didn't let out a word from his lips as he heard the voice. He turned, though he was invisible, he was sure that someone knew he was there. But he saw no one. He took in a breath and slowly exhaled, trying not to get to hyped up, just because he was invisible doesn't mean he was sound proof.
His breath was getting heavier, which made him more vulnerable, causing him to hesitate in movement. Maybe I should just keep going... he told himself, which he did. Taking a few steps towards the direction in which Kitty had gone, he started to lose the hesitating feeling of being watched and continued the path to the showers, in which he walked in and stood outside the shower wall.
Someone has a crush on the Kitten.
Jack furrowed his brow; I’m not going crazy...
Another female entered the showers, taking a stall a few down from Kitty's.
Of course you aren’t.
I'm not? wait...who are you. Why can I hear you in my head?
The girl in the shower, though he was unable to see, smirked as she started washing her hair under the warm water. No, Jack, you aren’t crazy...
Jack crossed his arms over his knees, which were propped up as he slid to the floor to sit. If I’m not crazy, then...why am I hearing a female voice in my head?
Perhaps it's because you are in the North wing building...the girls building...in the girl’s showers on this level.
He tilted his head in thought, for a moment; she had a good point.
The sound of soft laughter could be heard in the showers, but it wasn't Kitty's laughter, she was humming to herself lightly in the shower stall, it reverberated of the tile walls of the shower, it was a soothing sound, her voice. Jack even had to admit...she had a good tone of voice.
Why are you in here?
Uh... Jack's face turned slightly pink at her question. But it may have been more of the answer that made him flush than the question itself. You really wouldn't believe me if I told you...
Well, Jack. She chuckled. Try me.
Jack took a deep, steady breath, trying not to give himself away in the showers, seeing as he was leaning up against Kitty’s shower wall.
Well, Kitty was looking for me earlier. Because I walked out with out a word...and she's been being a good friend within the last 24 hours, so...I don’t. Have friends. I have my brothers. And I guess, I want to tell her...that I... like her. That she's the first person to make me feel like I exist, well. You know. It's just. The way she looks at me, she doesn't look at me and see my brothers, she sees me, not the wrongs I may do, or have done, and she sees me. And I heard her looking for me...a while ago, and I didn’t answer, because I was being an ass...so I came up to follow her. To speak with her, but I don’t know how to...Jack let out a small sigh. This was not something he really wanted to be telling to someone he didn’t know, but hey...someone was willing to listen...so maybe he was willing to talk...think...talk think. Yeah....
Well that is something you really should just...do. Stop being such a pansy, and tell her what you just told me.
You just told your feelings to a voice of a person you don’t even know. Come on, there really isn't much else I can say in that matter.
Well, that's a good point I guess.
The shower turned off, and Kitty pulled the towel into the shower, drying herself off and wrapping the towel around her body, walking out into the bathroom part of the showers and to her mound of clothing on one of the sinks. She started to pull on her clothes, which caused Jack to cover his eyes again.
Oh god...help me...
Kitty turned as the girl in the other shower had turned it off and dried herself, changing in her stall and walking out in pants and a button up shirt she had borrowed from her friend Trav.
Aileen smiled at Kitty. "That would be me, don’t wear it out."
Kitty laughed and rolled her eyes as she pulled on her plaid coat.
"So, that boy...Jack you walked in with earlier. Is he the reason you left too?" she asked curiously, brushing her mangled hair in the mirror.
"Yeah...but you already knew that..."
Aileen let out a chuckle. I don't know everything.
With a grin, Kitty nodded. "I doubt that."
"You like him don’t you."
"Now how did you get that idea?” Kitty smirked and left the showers, leaving a grinning Aileen and an invisible Jack alone in the shower room.
Chapter 8: Kitty
Aileen was an interesting girl, I must admit, she was a level or two above me if not more. Telepathy would be such a burden. Would it not? To be able to listen to anyone’s thoughts at almost any time. That takes an amount of control to be able to handle not hearing everything coming from every person passing you. I know I wouldn’t be able to handle so many voices of so many around me at once, never being able to hear your very own thoughts because they are being drown out by masses of mental issues. I mean in this place, everyone had an issue, no matter what it was, or who is was with. This is why I looked up to Aileen, I didn’t know her that well, but she was able to control her ability, her power, with much more control than many of the other students in Arealynn.
I of course, the ability of a chameleon, could not control my ability to the highest extent. My powers were limited. I could camouflage into objects such as walls, and Jack’s invisible body. I haven’t been able to bend my body with my ability; that, I was still trying to learn.
As I reached the dorm room I shared with Kara, I walked in and tossed the towel in the hamper near my bed. I knew this was Saturday, and seeing as we weren’t supposed to leave the school without an escort at least by a level 5, I would be staying in the Academy. Again.
“Might as well do the essay for Mr., Reyburn.” I muttered to myself aloud, moving to my desk and pulling my bag from the chair. I reached inside and yanked out my book and some paper. Tossing the book open on my pillow, and stuffing the paper under the clipboard hold so I could write without making holes in it, I plopped onto the bed holding an orange #2 pencil.
“Physics…” I began to read the content on the page. “Advances in physics often translate to the technological sector, and sometimes influence the other sciences, as well as mathematics and philosophy.”
“Huh.” I shrugged and started to write my essay, looking through the book and then continuing on the papers.
Four in a half pages, and an hour later, I finally finished the essay. Not that I was complaining, I liked learning, and studying. However, my brain was burnt out just from that short amount of time, due to my lake of sleep. So I laid my head down on the book, and started to drift off into a light sleep that was much well needed.
Chapter 9: The Dreaming Echos
Jack looked up at Aileen who was brushing her long hair from a wet mess to straight strands. He had this look, of pure thought on his face, and Aileen could see it. He was no longer invisible he was in solid form.
“Why the perplexed look?” Aileen asked with curiosity as she gazed through the mirror at his slumped body against the shower wall.
“You can…” he looked down at his knees which were visible in front of him instead of the cold stone floor of the Girls showers. “Oh.”
“I can see you, yeah.” She gave a small chuckle and then turned her body so she could lean back against the sinks. “You never answered my question.”
“I was just wondering what she meant by her last comment to you when she walked out.” He said as he continued to stare at his visible jean covered knees. “Did she know I was here, and didn’t say anything?” He asked with a bit of uneasiness. “Or…”
“No, she didn’t, Jack.” Aileen cut in. “Honestly man, you worry to much.”
He gave her a slight glare, but it wasn’t threatening to Aileen because of the putty frown that played along with it. Aileen gave a short laugh. “Aww, poor baby.”
This caused his frown to deepen and a huff to escape him. Pushing himself up from the ground, using the wall, he managed to get himself into a standing position. A mixture of pain and aggravation replaced his features, and he almost curled back over against the wall.
“Are you okay?” Aileen asked with semi-serious tone. Jack nodded and reverted to hopping around and stopping whilst admitting the frequent ‘OW’ from his vocabulary. Aileen couldn’t do much but sit there and make weird hand gestures for him not to hit something, or semi-quiet incoherent sounds of empathy. Finally Jack settled down and his pain eased away. Leaning against the wall, he caught his breath and relaxed.
“Gees.” He managed to mutter through his lack of energy.
“Are you okay, now?” Aileen asked with her normal tone, a hint of a smile in her voice. “Because I would hate to call help and then be questioned why you were in the girls showers to begin with.”
“Yeah, yeah.” Jack gave a small wave of his hand and then let out a laugh. “I never thought my leg falling asleep would be so painful.”
“Are you kidding me?” she laughed. His leg fell asleep? That’s why he was acting so weird? That was a priceless moment. Thought Aileen as she pushed away from the sinks and grabbed her brush and towel. “Well, I must admit this has been fun and all.”
But I have a friend to meet and you, my dear Jack Kresht, have a girl to find. Aileen gave a bow and grinned as she walked for the exit but stopped a moment. You may want to do something about your non-transparency, also. She smiled and walked out of the Girls showers to go catch up with Emerald.
Jack gave a slight nod and started to walk out after she left, now completely invisible again. He knew which girl Aileen meant. She meant Kitty. He needed to tell her he appreciated what she was doing, being nice to him and all, and coming out to look for him after breakfast. However, as he stood in front of Kitty and Kara’s dormitory, he suddenly lost all ways of speaking. His hand stopped mid knock as the door opened. He had just realized what he was doing, the fact he was invisible probably hadn’t made this any stranger, right.
Gazing at the girl before him he realized it was Kara, Kitty’s roommate. She obviously didn’t see him because she stepped out of the room, which caused Jack to move out of the way before she brushed up against him and realize he was there. As Kara left the room, pulling her sweater on, Jack took the opportunity to slip into the room before Kara turned and shut the door behind her.
Jack let out a steadying breath as he realized he was now inside the same room he was standing in about an hour ago, in the same spot, but Kitty wasn’t. Katrina was laying on her bed, her face pressed into the curve of her Physics book. Jack couldn’t help but smile at the sight. She was in a soundless sleep; her breathing was soft and steady, which caused him to move forward without realization towards her bed.
The soft creek of her bed as he slowly sat down on it, caused her to slightly stir, but she did not wake. Her exhaustion kept her in ‘bed bye’ land for longer, which Jack, right now, was perfectly fine with. Her skin looked soft, soft enough to touch, and her lips were formed in such a peaceful smile it made Jack’s heart beat faster.
Respecting her boundaries, he didn’t reach out his hand to confirm his hypothesis, but rather admired her from his current position.
The tree’s she had so long wanted to see were in front of her. The groups of them all together in a gigantic forest, flowers growing up from their roots to give the place such a wonderful glow were crushing under her feet as she explored through the forest. But the darkness was starting to surround her and she couldn’t keep up with the light.
‘Katrina…’ the haunting voice called out to her. ‘Katrina, help me.’
“Where are you?” she cried. “I can’t see you, you have to tell me where you are!”
‘Help me, please, I can’t see.’
Kitty started into a run. She found a small clearing in a group of trees where she stopped.
“Where are you, help me find you.”
Kitty looked around, she briskly searched until she found a door in a tree which she yanked open from the vines surrounding it. Stumbling inside she fell to her hands and knees, her breath heavy.
“No…”she breathed. She looked up through her fallen hair to view the hallway of level 9. She fumbled to stand up and when she did she ran for the stairwell.
‘Help me, please!’ it cried.
“How!” she cried.
“Kitty.” She started to stir as she was being shaken out of sleep. “Kitty, wake up!”
Kitty flew up into a sitting position, knocking someone to the floor. When she turned to look down her features turned curious.
Chapter 10: Hallway Gems
“It’s Em! Not Emer-” Em turned to shoot an irritated look of scorn at the person who decided to use her full name. “-ald…Hi.”
Jake Kresht stood with an amused look on his face as he gazed at the girl in front of him. “Yes, I just said that, anyway-“
“You did not!” she snapped, heat rising in her cheeks at the egotistical, yet gorgeous boy in front of her. “What do you want, don’t you have a girlfriend…girlfriends. To bug?” She asked a bit aggravated that she already was waiting 10 minutes longer for Aileen than she had even intended, making sure to emphasize on the s in girlfriends. How long does it take to shower! Four decades? Honestly woman, move it!
“I did too, and I don’t have girlfriends.” He retaliated. “I don’t even have a girlfriend, thank you very much, I’m waiting for the right person to come along, I do have morals!”
“Did not!” she challenged. “Yeah well good for you.”
“HAH!” Em pointed a finger at him and did a little jump in triumph. Jake put a finger out to argue but huffed, she defeated him and tricked him, and he frowned slightly.
Em smirked. “So much for you winning that argument!” She stuck her tongue out at him as Aileen walked up behind her.
Em! Jake Kresht!
Aileen continued to hold back a laugh as she cleared her throat. “Sorry I took so long, ran into something along the way here.” She smiled, at Jake. “I’m Aileen.”
He gave a curt nod. “Jake Kresht.”
“I know. Nice to have met you in person finally.” She turned to Emerald. “Okay, well are you done?”
“Yeah, yeah.” Em nodded and turned to leave.
Emerald turned her head and rolled her eyes. Jake smirked and turned away from the two girls who were walking the opposite direction. Well, he didn’t get to ask them about their friend Kitty, but he did meet someone interesting.
“What was that about!” Josh exclaimed as Jake walked over to him.
“Ah.” He nodded slowly before Jake pushed him along to go bug someone.
Chapter 11: Kitty
“Jack?” I stared at him from atop the bed as he lay on the floor a bit dumbfounded, for a moment I forgot all about the dream I had just had. At first I was confused, then worried, and now my anger was rising in the fact he was in my room. “What are you doing in here?!”
Jack gave me an astonished look before he stood up, pushing himself with his hands to a hunched over position before wincing and standing semi-straight. “I needed to…ow.”
“To talk to you.” He looked up at me. “Aileen said I should, because I talked to her after I followed you out of here to the showers-“
“You followed me into the showers!” I repeated slowly. That explains why I had the passing feeling of a presence earlier.
“Yeah…I didn’t see anything!” He screeched then lowered his voice as so not to catch anyone’s attention outside the room. “I covered my eyes when you started to change..and I leaned up against the shower stall wall when you were in there…talking to Aileen…well…um..thinking thoughts..thoughting…think outing-”
“Think outing?” I raised a brow and then let out a small laugh. Jack frowned. “Well give me a break! I was trying to find a word for it, I’m not particularly used to having someone talking to me through my thoughts!”
I nodded, giving him credit for that, but the fact he was in my room, watching me sleep, seeing as how he had to of snuck in here somehow…and knew I was having a bad dream, cause he shook me awake. But why the hell did he have to follow me into the showers! I couldn’t tell if that was sweet, or just plain creepy.
“You followed me into the showers…to talk to me?”
Jack let out a sigh as he ran his hand through his now mangled curls. “I heard you looking for me, when I left at breakfast…I knew it was you…but I ignored you.”
“I figured.” Sighing, I shook my head. “I shouldn’t have come after you, probably just wanted to be alone…like always.” Jack’s look changed into a fit of confusion.
“Why…. no, no.” He stepped toward me, causing me to jump a little, after the dream, I was a bit skittish of everything at the moment. Upon seeing this he didn’t move again, for a while.
“No It’s not that I wanted to be alone…well it was, but not from you.”
My brow furrowed, I didn’t understand. Jack was trying to find the right words to explain to me what he did to Aileen. But he wasn’t moving so fast in that brain of his.
“I like you… I care about you Katrina.” He managed to force out. “You make me feel wanted. My power, my ability, just makes me feel like how I always do. Invisible to the world.” He sighed.
“I have no friends, not really. You can thank my brothers for that I suppose, I mean they aren’t as bad anymore, but because they intimidate a lot of the kids in our level, they are of me too. I don’t want to intimidate people Kitty; I want friends.” Jack’s eyes glanced briefly at me, but it seemed to be really bothering him, to get all of this out in front of me, and this caused me to frown.
“Jack, it’s okay, you don’t have to go on if you don’t want to.” I said softly, but he ignored me and went on.
“…You are the first person, to treat me like I’m one of your friends, smiling at me with a real smile, not some plastered on smile for show just so I won’t hurt you or something. When I’m around you, I feel seen. You see me, not through me. And I want you to know, how much I appreciate your kindness.”
My heart raced, no one had said that to me before. I know my brother had told me countless times in the past how much he appreciated me doing something, but nothing quite like what Jack had said to me.
I stood from the bed, and stepped forward, wrapping my arms around Jack. A few tear’s strayed through my eyelids as I hugged him. “Jack, I’ve never seen through you…that’s always how I felt you would see me…through me, not at me. But you don’t and that makes me happy.”
Jack let out a soft sigh of relief and a smile. Wrapping his arms around me. “I’m glad…now. Why were you shaking in your sleep.”
I had almost forgot. I pulled away slightly to look at him. “Level 13. Something was trying to get my help… and I fell into level 9 in the west wing building…it needs my help. And I can find them on level 13…”
“Level 13” he asked puzzled. “That’s impossible.”
“There are only 12 levels…”
The day passed by quickly, Jack convinced Kitty to do some research first on the school before going on a wild goose chase off of a dream she had. Emerald and Aileen decided to do some practice training in base level 3 of the West wing building, walking onto the large floor, covered in practice objects and surrounded by padded walls. Em had brought in the stereo and put on some frequency CD that would cause Aileen to push through the sound waves of the music to hear Emerald and her thoughts. The first practice they were assigned too together four years ago, Emerald tried to shape herself into a wolf, but she instead, deciding against it, shaped herself into Aileen, causing Aileen to get confused at hearing her own voice in her own thoughts, having trouble gathering if they were her own. Both had come along way, best of friends, and the most outgoing girls in the school in many opinions.
Aileen was trying to concentrate over the sounds of the music sound waves. She squinted her eyes as she moved around the massive room of objects, bridges, hiding places and such, her hand caught hold of a small knife clocked into one of the wooden practice boards, a small sound of curiosity running through her mind that wasn’t hers. With a small smirk Aileen turned and tossed it at the opposite side of the room causing a yelp and a disgruntled little girl to tumble out of the way as it nearly missed her head.
“What was that!” the girl shifted into a taller, much older girl. “What was that? You could have pinned my forehead to the wall along with that knife Aileen!”
“Ah, but it didn’t!” Aileen smiled at Em. “You’re still standing aren’t you?” She stated in her matter-o-fact tone, which Em didn’t seem to thrill about. She huffed and changed the song on the Stereo.
“No. Knives.” Em said as she disappeared in the mess of objects and Aileen gave a small chuckle before she bit her lip in concentration. Her back was against a bunch of stacked wooden crates, listening intently through the music for any sound of movement. As she heard a small trudge of sneakers and a then nothing, her gaze shifted through the dim room.
Her hand now searched for something in one of the barrels of random objects a few feet from her that she had to scoot slowly over to. Her hand carfully and quietly searched for something that wouldn’t be sharp.
“Come on.” She whispered lowly to herself. “That’s it.” She slowly pulled a shoe out of the barrel and then turned just in time to see a cat jump at her, she ducked and tossed the shoe at it.
It hissed and once again the form shifted back into Emerald, whose look, for Aileen, was a rewarding frown. Em rubbed her head as she stood up. Aileen put her hands out in defense.
“Hey, you said no knives.”
She gave her friend a mild glare, which was more of a frown.
“Honestly, that is just disgusting.”
“At least it didn’t kill you.” Aileen laughed.
“It could be diseased!” she pouted. “Who knows who’s ruddy feet have touched that germ infested shoe.”
“Oh stop whining Em’s, it’s just a ruddy shoe.” She rolled her eyes and grabbed her best friends arm. “Oh come on, let’s go, I think that’s enough for today.”
Emerald was still frowning but nodded anyway. “Fine, at least if we eat I won’t be getting hit with a rotten shoe.”
“You are never going to let that go are you.”
Em shook her head in a child like manner. “Nope, never.”
Aileen sighed and shook her head with a smile. Jake was watching them come out from the West wing building door from the stairs, leaning forward in curiosity. However he didn’t bother to move, seeing as they were going for the girls building, and his brother was returning from whatever he was doing in the boy’s south wing building towards him. So for now, he thought to let his curiosity just, melt away… but Just for now.
…It has been about two days now. Sunday had passed quite vigorously in my opinion. Their wasn’t much to tell about Sundays here at Arealyyn, just that even if we wanted to leave to go to church, like a few students in the past have muttered around on campus, there would be no chance without parent permission and an escort by the board. Yes, the schoolboard, the most secretive towards the students. They say they are our protectors against those who don’t understand us, and we are brought here, enrolled by our parents…well those of us who have parents.
Now that I look back at it I really wonder whether or not coming here was safer than staying where we were, Dani and I. Of course I’m only venting my opinion because of the strange things happening around here. How could I have been so blind with everyone else who paid no attention to the disappearances? Today after classes I’m going to check out the library, for the history on our school, its in our school building, the west wing, below in the base levels I believe, under individual lessons or practices. Maybe I’ll find something out, hopefully.
Kitty shut her journal, shoving it under her mattress as she pulled herself out of bed and got dressed before Kara had a chance to get up. With an effort, Katrina as able to yank her jeans from the bedside dresser, grabbing hold of the bed frame before she was able to tumble to the wood floor.
“Kitty?” She heard a small whisper outside the room, she pulled on her jeans, and quickly pulled on a T-shirt and a green sweater, walking to the door. It took her a moment to open the door, as it was a creeker and she didn’t want to risk waking up Kara right now, it was, as she read on Kara’s ipod, 5:13 am.
The door opened slowly, Kitty’s head popping out of the doorway into the hallway where she saw nothing. “Hello?”
“Grab your bag and get out here.” She heard a low whisper and Kitty furrowed her brow before she sighed and snuck her head back into the room, creeping over to her desk and grabbing her bag.
Kara shifted a bit in her sleep, a low groan escaping her lips as she yanked the blanket that was lingering halfway off the bed, onto her body unconsciously and rolled over still asleep. Kitty let out a slight sigh of relief and made her way back to the ajar door and squeezed her and her bag out of the dorm room and into the hallway, shutting the door as quietly as possible.
“Let’s go.” She felt a hand take her arm and a shuffle of feet with hers as she moved down the hallway and to the stairwell at the end of their hall. Once in the safety of the concrete box of 45 degrees, she felt the hand on her arm let go and she turned around. Slowly, two figures were becoming transparent.
“Jack?” she furrowed her brow and looked to the other. “Aileen? What is going on?”
“We have information, but we need to go meet Em in the base level 4 of this building.” Aileen whispered and began to move down the stairs, turning invisible again as Jack touched her arm and they began to head below the building, Kitty following behind curiously; the dragging of her feet on the stairs creating an irritating echo in the stairwell.
Luckily there were only two more floors til base level where they opened the second of two doors and followed the next set of stairs down to base level 4, where Emerald was standing outside of the doorway into the base-level.
“Good you’re here, finally.” She muttered as Aileen and Jack became visible once again.
“Sorry, we were trying to get here without distraction.” Aileen moved toward Em.
“Okay so what exactly did we get pulled here for?” Jack asked, obviously he hadn’t known anything from the look on his face.
“In.” Em motioned towards the now open door.
Reluctantly Jack and Katrina moved through the doorway. The base level 4 was a dimly lit large room, filled with what looked like a bunch of peoples forgotten belongings.
“So, what is this information you said you had that was so important?” Kitty asked, her fingers waving in front of her face as a bunch of dust circled in front of her, where Jack had blown it off from an old mirror.
“Sorry.” He muttered.
“” Aileen moved toward Em.
“Okay so what exactly did we get pulled here for?” Jack asked, obviously he hadn’t known anything from the look on his face.
“In.” Em motioned towards the now open door.
Reluctantly Jack and Katrina moved through the doorway. The base level 4 was a dimly lit large room, filled with what looked like a bunch of peoples forgotten belongings.
“So, what is this information you said you had that was so important?” Kitty asked, her fingers waving in front of her face as a bunch of dust circled in front of her, where Jack had blown it off from an old mirror.
“Sorry.” He muttered.
“18 or so odd months ago someone disappeared on level 9 of our school in the WWB.” Aileen started.
“The WWB?” Jack raised a dark brow, his curiosity stirring as he leaned against an old wardrobe.
“West wing building.” Kitty clarified. “Okay, we know someone disappeared, so what are you saying?”
“It was a girl, Mara Quinn.” Aileen continued, pressing one foot against the wall nearest them with her arms crossed against her chest. “A Level 16.”
Kitty turned from the old rag doll lying atop one of the chairs next to her. “Level 16… but there was never a level 16 in our school before, except maybe someone on the board of protection…” she mused.
“Exactly, so why is it, that a student, who can be just as powerful as someone in the upper levels of the board, go missing, unless…”
“They were a threat.” Jack quipped in, his mind comprehending the information.
“Or maybe.” Em stood up from a crate she was sitting on. “They knew something… something the board didn’t want them to leak out.”
“Like what?” asked Kitty, pulling her hair back into a ponytail.
“That’s just it, we don’t know.”
“Well how do we find out?” Jack asked, his eagerness to gain more information now raging in his body.
“We would have to get ahold of files, or maybe someone…a teacher?”
“And how would we get information out of a teacher exactly?” Jack asked simultaneously. “I highly doubt they would be up for questioning like this, besides, it would put us all under suspicion, and if that girl did disappear because she knew something, it doesn’t mean it won’t happen to us.”
“He has a point.” Aileen looked at Emerald, who was in a strain of thought.
“Well then how do we do this?” Em asked aloud.
“We investigate.” Kitty stepped forward. “Ourselves.”
I could see the fear in each of their eyes, and I felt it, I felt the fear that was lingering inside their souls; we could die, we could all die from what we were about to unleash. The secrets we were grasping to uncover, the secrets, which could change our lives…forever.
No turning back
“You don’t think anyone knows do you?” Aileen asked Kitty as they sat down at the library in the base level of the East Wing building. Her eyes showed the sudden panic that Kitty knew they were all feeling due to the pressure it was of being a spy. They were beginning to feel like spies, like they were rebels against the Board or something, but right night they couldn’t let that get to them, and Kitty of all others knew it.
“No one knows but us and the others, relax.” Kitty placed a hand on Aileen’s shoulder to reassure her they were safe from the world’s bloodthirsty eyes.
The fear shined in both of their eyes and in an odd way it comforted Aileen. She nodded her head of wavy brown hair and sighed, leaning her forehead against the palm of her hand.
“So…what did you find out?” Aileen changed the subject slightly, honestly hoping Katrina had found something useful within the last fifteen minutes.
“Nothing exactly, but the building blueprints show nothing of a level 13, which I don’t understand.” Kitty’s finger roamed over the mapping of the buildings where there should be a level thirteen if there even was one. “If there was one…it would be here.”
“Did you check the date?”
Aileen pushed back her hair as she looked over the blueprints. There was a small printing of numbers on the bottom right hand corner of the grid, and Aileen pushed her glasses up the bridge of her nose.
“I think…” she heard a small click from the hall and immediately Kitty shot her gaze in the direction of the door.
“Aileen, hurry up.”
“Hold on…” her eyes wavered from the date to the rest of the room. “Hmm…that doesn’t make sense…”
“What?” Kitty took a brief glance at the blueprints in curiosity. Her fingers laced through the weaves of her hair as she tried to drown out the faint noise from the hallway.
“These areas on level 9…” Aileen pointed out one of the small squares, indicating a secondary door in on of the utilitarian closets on level 9, leading to a room, that would most likely be reached through the stairwell, if there was a doorway for it.
“This door here, it leads to another area, an area that seems to be lost to everyone else but those who have seen the blueprint or built the academy…but this is a simple blueprint, I can’t be 100% sure this leads to anything unless I view a third dimensional grid of these last few levels, to be sure of anything at all.” Aileen rolled up the blue print as she began to put it away.
“By the way…there are no teachers outside the door.” She turned to look at Kitty, whose eyes were nervously fixated on the knob of the door.
“Its just Jack… pacing the hallway.”
“I don’t understand.” Came her weak reply, followed by Aileen tossing a date-book and something oddly resembling a 1930’s yearbook, onto the table.
“Jack’s been doing the safety dance.” Aileen sighed. “Meaning he’s been following you, keeping a distance but making sure nothing, and no one, is following you.”
“Oh.” Kitty could only form the simple word before she was handed the date-book.
“Let’s start researching, yeah?”
“We have been.”
“I have been…”
“Okay, fine, lets research.”
“We’ve been at this for hours.” Came the sleep deprived voice of Katrina Frentt. Her face lingering over the many assortments of books and papers piled in front of her. Her friend was rummaging through the shelves, her foot stepping up on the later to the cabinet that reached to the ceiling, she was pulling the files out and placing back in determination.
“And yet we still have found out nothing.” Aileen let out a sigh; she would not be defeated in such a demeaning manner.
“Maybe we should just call it a night.” Kitty tried to coax her friend into pausing their research so she could possibly get some rest before her head exploded. Unfortunately that only earned her silence.
The sound of a knock at the door sent a wide-eyed panic through both of the females in the forbidden room. Aileen’s eyes met Kitty’s in uneasiness. There was long silence before another knock reached the room, followed by a soft male voice.
“Are you guys okay in there?”
There was relief in both girls as Kitty got up and moved for the door. She met Jack’s worried, yet tired eyes as she opened the door.
“We’re fine, Jack.” She smiled softly, letting him step into the room before shutting the door and locking it.
“You’ve been in here for hours, have you found anything out?” He asked hopefully.
Aileen shook her head. “Not really, just a few things, which do not help at all.”
Jack sunk into the seat Kitty had been occupying moments ago and sighed. “Well that’s wonderful.”
The telepath continued her rummaging until she reached the top drawer of the cabinet and tried to yank it open. “Great, it’s stuck.” She groaned as her hands pushed on it in attempt to get it loose.
“Did you hear that?”
Before either of them could answer the bookshelf began to shift, a few books pushed off onto the floor and slowly a long wooden plank of the shelf extended and laid out flat. The three of them stared at it, a small mahogany chest splayed on the edge of it.
“W-what it that?” Jack asked fearfully. “Is that a box?
“No, it’s a triangle.” Aileen replied sarcastically. “Yes, Jack, it’s a box…”
“A chest to be exact.” Kitty added in, walking over to try and get a better look as Aileen stepped down from her perch on the ladder and joined Kitty in front of the chest. “Should we open it?”
Aileen took no hesitation. Her hands grasped the box and lifted the lid.
“It’s a piece of paper.” Kitty stated almost in disappointment.
The telepath shook her head. “It’s not just a piece of paper.” She said as she pulled the paper from the chest and unfolded it. “It’s blueprints.”
“Blueprints?” Jack furrowed his brow. “Blueprints of what?”
“Holy crap!” Kitty gasped as she turned her head around to look at the paper in Aileen’s grasp. “Their the blueprints of the original layout of the school.”
“What?” Jack got up and walked over curiously.
“Look here.” Aileen pointed at the blueprints. “See this?”
“The square?” Jack asked in confusion. Two pairs of aporetic eyes met his question.
The girls shook their head, deciding to ignore his asinine question.
“This is on level nine, if you view the point shown in the blueprints we found earlier.” She set the paper on the table as Kitty unraveled the other blueprints, allowing the three to examine the two together.
“See here?” Aileen pointed to the more recent blueprints of the school, in the same place she had just pointed out on the other blueprints. “This is the janitors closer…right?”
The two nodded, eagerly awaiting Aileen to continue her knowledgeable information.
“Well in the old blueprints, in the same place, there is a door shown…like another staircase that leads up through the last few floors of the building, only…it ends here.” She pointed out the floor of level 12.
“It disappears, but here, the e in the corner of this rectangle…it’s an elevation marker.”
“Which means what?” Kitty stared intently between the two papers.
“It means where the stairs end, something elevates you the rest of the way.” She explained. “It’s an elevator.”
Jack nodded. “Which explains why there is no staircase or opening in the stairwell to another floor past level 12.”
“Exactly, and look.” She trailed her finger up the pass way of the elevator that landed them right into another level not shown on the newer blueprints. Kitty’s heart almost stopped as Aileen’s finger stopped at the small writing where the elevator passage stopped.
Texte: Edited Photos and Illistrations by the Group of kids in my town. (Friends in Art department)
Tag der Veröffentlichung: 11.04.2010
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To my Father. For always giving advising inspiration. To Emily & Aileen, who inspired this series.