In The Still of The Night

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Original poster
The Fist smashed into the wooden beam behind him as he ducked to the left, falling over a stone statue of a sphinx in the darkened room lite by electric lamps. The assailant reared back his hand, grunting in pain as a foot kicked out at his shin, reducing him to the ground. The young man who kicked him tumbled backwards and grabbed a staff from a rack of weapons. He stood at the ready as the attacker stood up again, his tight fitting leather pants and puffy renaissance shirt adorned him with a regal, threatening look. He took a few steps towards the man and the light of a single lamp.
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"That's Enough Darius." The man said, rubbing the soreness out of his hand. The master spoke, and the student obeyed.
"You NEVER pick up a weapon master Lorenzo." He said, slicking back his hair and putting the wooden staff back on the rack.
"That's because you're not ready to pick one up yourself. You haven't mastered yourself, how can you master a weapon?" he said simply, roughing up the kids hair and exiting the room with him. What met them was a large fencing chamber with stone walls housing about eighteen different groups of people fighting in full gear. Their blades swished through eh dank cellar room air with deft speed and ample grace. The boy smiled.
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"You're right… I am not ready…Yet… But soon master, soon." He said, walking up the stairs and putting on the coat Lorenzo threw to him. He grabbed his backpack from the coat-rack and exited the back door of the sprawling mansion just half a mile north of town in the forest. He climbed on his bike and started off into town
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The school was full of people by the time he got there, the hoodie on his leather jacket covering his face. The story was, that Jack here had a rare blood disease preventing him from over exposure to sunlight and vitamin A. he was a bit pale for his European descent, and everything added up on the doctor's bills. He entered the school and went to his locker. The regular laughter and chortling of the hallway was cut short by the first hour five minute warning bell. His biker boots, steel toes with hard leather, were the only really nice thing he had. His coven at the mansion had given them to him, and he was due for his initiation soon.
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He made his way to first hour slowly.
Click, click, click, click, click, click.

Rose smiled as she looked at the massive mansion in front of her. It had a fun victorian era feel and she loved taking pictures of old buildings. She opened the small pocket watch around her neck and realized that she was running late.

"Oh shoot." she muttered and raced off down the street. It was the first day of school and she was going to be late.

Her Oxford shoes hit the concrete as she raced up the steps and through the front doors. The halls were basically empty, so she assumed that the warning bell had already rung.

"Oh no, I'm going to be--" The bell rang and the sound bounced off the walls and Rose sunk her shoulders. "..late."

She quickly fixed her long, wavy, black hair and silently walked down the hall to her class room and tried to sneak in while the teacher had his back to her.

"Mrs. Charles, please get to your seat. I have had enough of your tardiness and it's only the first ten minutes of the new school year." He said and she sunk her shoulders again.

"Okay," She muttered and let her shoes clack against the hard floor as she walked to her seat next to the boy in a leather jacket and steel toed boots. "Nice shoes..." she muttered, admiring them. When she saw the boy stare at her she blushed and cleared her throat. "Um...sorry."

Turning to face the board, Rose set her camera on her desk and her small bag on her lap....this is going to be a long day.
The boy chcukled a littel under his breathe.

"CLass, i woudl like to draw you attention to our newest addition to our school, Mr. Villegas, woudl you please stand?" She said pointedly. The boy next to her stood up.

"Hi.. ah.. m name es jack Villegas, yes Its espanish, and as you can see, i do have an accent." he smiled, shrugging as the class laughed at him. He chuckled a little and spoke regularly.

"Yeah, sorry, teach, I am Jack, and my father was from SPAIN.. nto mexico, so no beaner jokes, come up with somethign i havent heard already." he laughed at this one himself.

"THAT will be more than enough, Mr. Villegas." she said. It WAS a long day.


Coem lunch hour, Jack strolled into teh cafeteria late, because he was busy getting his lunch card in the office first, and stepped onto the hard floor of the cafeteria with a resounding *CLICK*.

Hsi long deep brown hair waved behind him as he walked, but he kept it in a hairtie held tight tot eh back of his head. IT had already begun though. he was slammed agains the wall by the local bully secodns later.

"Heya there, ESPANA..." he chuckled, holding him tot eh wall with a tight hold on his shirt.

"oh hell." jack sighed, closign his eyes. " What the hell do you want?" he asked unamused, and a little annoyed. this was NOT how he wanted his first day to go.

"Your jacket." the bully said.

"No." jack answered so quickly the bully had to stop and think a moment, his bald head and denim jacket were scratched up and torn.. this bastard was a brawler.

"Gimme it NOW!" he said, throwing jack tot eh floor...nobody seemed to care.

"AND I SAID NO!" jack retorted, gettign up and regainign his composure. he started to walk away... the bully's friends circled him.

JAck stood still and crossed his arms. "You don't wanna do this.." he said... honestly though, he had no idea how he woudl handle this situation without gettign in trouble on his first day...even the teachers didn't seem to care. this was why Jack liked small towns instead of small cities liek this place was. a small following of peopel where circlign to see the massacre.

The bully spun jack araound. "NOW!" he said, startign to pull off the coat. Jack grabbed the kid by the sides of his jaws and held his face close with surprisign strength. he whispered a silent warning to the bully that nobody coudl hear.

"So help me god, if you touch my fathers leather jacket again, i will be staining it red with your blood, and they wont have enough pieces left of you to bury you in a coffe can." he hissed, lettign go of his jaws and shovign him away. jack looked around at the other boys surrounding him.

"THIS ISN'T THE MATRIX... YOU ARE NOT superheroes... AND YOU DO NOT GET TO FUCK WITH THE NEW KID!" he yelled, turngin around at them with hatred in hsi eyes.

"SO BUZZ OF AND LEAVE ME BE YOU PRICKS!" he yelled again... the bully was cowerign at him. "GO.. ALL OF YOU. FUCK OFF!"

and THAT was all that the teacher heard... fuck off. THe teachers turned and saw the spectacle. Minutes later, Jack was sitting at a table eating lunch... alone... the bullies where on the opposite side of the cafeteria completely.
Rose smiled happily as she took pictures over and over again of trees, buildings...anything. As she got closer to the cafeteria, though, she heard a commotion and turned her head that way, her black hair bouncing off her shoulders.

"What's going on there?" She whispered to herself as she slowly started to walk towards it. By the time she got there, the whole debacle was over and it looked like she missed all of the action. Shrugging, Rose walked into line for lunch and kindly thanked the lunch lady. Despite the label of the school's antisocial-wannabe-photographer, she still found a way to be happy.

As she started to walk towards her usual table, she noticed that a new face took it today. Seeing that it was the new boy from Spain...or "from Spain", she made a bee line for him.

"Hello." She said cheerfully. "I'm Rose..." she learned forward on her elbows. "And you're not exactly from Spain...are you?"

She winked at him and chuckled. "My mother is a linguist, I can tell which is which. So where are you from?"
Jack laughed.
" My mother is from Ponce, spain, and we lived with my father in argentina until about two years ago." he said, leaving his milk alone and going for the rib sandwich with pretty well honed manners.

"My name's Jack ' nice boots' villegas, and you are? i cont believe i havent asked yet he said, after swallowing his first bite. HE had a subtle charm to his personality that was rare and sometimes came off as being pruddish.
Rose blinked at him.

"Rose....didn't I say that?" She scratched her head and nodded. "Yeah, i think i said that..."

Shrugging, Rose smiled. "Nice, Argentina. Always wanted to go there. Great place to take photos." Shelifted her old Canon camera and smiled even more.

"Funny, I just found this really beautiful mansion close to my house. Never knew it was there before...I wonder why..."

She took a bite out of her apple and thought about it. She lived in the small town her whole she must have seen it sometime.
"Its a boarding house, and soem kind of academy they opened. the place was apparantly condemned until a.. well i think mum said it was a private social services organization, like Peta for undereducated people or sumthin." he said, shrugging.

"Sorry, rose, my memory gets fuzzy sometimes." he tapped his skull. "too much to take in today." he added politely, dfinishign his sandwich rather quickly.
"Well. Okay, but I still don't understand how I've missed it for fifteen looks old too so I don't--"

Looking around, Rose noticed that Jack stood up and left. Sinking her shoulders she took another bite of her apple.

"No one wants to be friends with the energetic photographer." She muttered softly as she put her apple on the table and laid her head in front of it. Defeated. The bell rang for her next class and she slowly gathered her things and walked to her next class, photography.
Come the end of school, Jack was unlocking his bike from the bikestand. The bully from before was watching him, and he was angry as hell too. Jack felt eyes on him, and runed his head, with a wicked smile on his face... he looked straight at the bully and put his fingers to his eyes, then pointed at the bastard... they disappeared qucikly.

Jack enjoyed a rather sadistic laugh at their expense...then he turned around. "Is she stalking me?" he said, seeing rose come. before she was in earshot, he smiled to himself slightly. " At least she's cute." he whispered, moving his bike off the rack and shoving the lock cord into his bookbag.
Rose pulled out the key for her bike while silently singing a tune and went up to unlock her bike. It was quite old and constantly needed fixing, but it worked so she kept it. She passed Jack on her way there and was about to say something, but then remembered what happened in the cafeteria and thought better of it. Losing her smile, Rose silently unlocked her bike and put the cord in her messenger bag, and rode off in the opposite direction, making her way towards the small camera shop down the street.

Stopping in front of the old shop, she leaned her bike against the glass window and walked in. The bell chimed her entrance.

"Rose." Said George a man of around sixty five. "How are you?"

"Okay," Rose replied smiling slightly. "I have a question though,"

"Fire away."

"George, you've lived her longer than anyone else...have you noticed that massive mansion? It looks pretty old but I've only noticed it today."

George thought about it and then looked at her. "You know what?" He started. "So have I...but it might just be because I was such a busy person. I did go around the world for about two years when I was younger, maybe they built it then."

Rose nodded slightly then shrugged. "Oh well. Do you have anything new? New lenses...?"

"Of course, actually this is one of mine, go ahead try it out."

Rose detached her lens and put in the older one. Putting her eye on the viewfinder she was finding the zoom incredible. Smiling she put her camera down.

"That's great. It's the few that's compatible with my camera as well..."

"You can have it if you'd like."

Rose looked at him, shocked.

"Really? But...but."

"I wasn't going to sell it anyway, it's fine, Rose. You look like you need some cheering up."

Rose smiled a toothy smile and thanked George. Wrapping the lens in paper, George handed it back to her and she put it in her bag. Walking out, she rode her bike back to her street and saw the mansion again. Where did it come from?
She would have gone by just in time to see jack pulling into the gates of the place and ridign his bike around the back of the mansion. He set his bike against the wall haphazardly, and went inside. He walked throught eh silent halls, and up the stairs into the residential wings of the mansion.

"your first day was good i hope?" Said a female voice as he entered his family's room.

"Yeah...i madea good impression.. for the most part." he shrugged. His mother didn't press things, she was VERY sleepy, as was everyone in the place during the day. allt eh curtains were drawn aswell.

"Go to sleep mom, you didn't have to stay up for My sake." he said. His mother was very young, she looked to be maybe 25 or 26, and THAT would cause some problems someday, because Jack looked about 18 with his hair up. He walked into his room and sat down at his craft table.

Jack's hobby was one doozy of a pasttime. He was a jeweler. Infact, just abotu everyone at the mansion had a hobby that doubled as income, because THAT was how they all made their living, selling their wares on foreign markets and such. Jack was finishing cutting a piece of turqoise for soem native american necklace he had been working on for about eight days. He woudl work on this until four o' clock when his master woke him for mentoring and battle practice before school.


The next morning, jack walked with a bit of a limp into first hour.

"Jack, are you alright?" the teacher asked.

"Well, it was a learnign experience... I learned the higher you climb, the more gravity despises you." he smiled, sitting down.
Rose watched him as he walked down the aisle and sat down next to her.

"Are you okay?" She asked quietly.

Offering a smile, Rose had some hope of conversation, but after yesterday she doubted it. Looking at her notebook, she tapped her pencil as she was sketching one of the flowers she saw at the mansion, still wondering what made her walk past it everyday and not notice it. Her head was lost in the clouds as she kept wondering about how that would happen.

"Maybe it's like those faerie books where they have glamour on it so people can't see and i can because of the Sight. But then that would mean George has it too." She giggled to herself at the thought, ignoring the oncoming attention to herself.
"Something like that." Jack said, not aware that he had read her mind yet. to him, she had spoken those words, but his mind was elsewhere. His mind was on the words his master had told him today.

" We are at a turngin point in our history, Darius. You're name was given to you by your father before his disappearance, Darius Damon was the one who founded our coven in 1402. When you come of age, and the clan recognizes you as the full-blooded methusalah you are... you will take us all to new heights..."

'amd i jack... am i Darius... who am i supposed ot be... i can't be two people, but i cant be someone i am not eiither..." He was in a mental funk all day, walking like a zombie on autopilot. His limp disappeared by lunch.
Rose walked over to the table and found it empty.

"Should have thought." She said sadly.

Setting down her food she picked at it and saw Jack walking in.

I thought he had a limp, she thought. Those things just don't disappear, especially if you fall. She didn't eat and sat at the table, completely duped.

Does he have something to do with that mansion? How did he lose his limp so quickly? How did she not notice that?

These questions haunted her during the entire school day and when she was biking home, stopping again to study the mansion. But this time someone was watching her from the top window and Rose quickly went home, suddenly frightened.
The same old same happened every day until the weekend came along. Jack was walking down mainstreet by the photo shop towards the bike shop next to it. He had a black eye this time, and stopped dead in his tracks as Rose exited the shop. 'oh no..' he thought.

Practicing with master lorenzo was starting to tax his body. He had left himself open to a full fist early that morning. "Heya there rose.. so i guess you really take this photography thing pretty seriously eh?" he asked politely, hopign she wouldn't ask him about the eye...
Rose was digging in her bag for her keys when Jack approached her.

"Huh? Oh yeah I've been coming here for a while--oh my God. What...what happened to your eye?"

She took a step towards him and studied it.

"Do you do martial arts? I used to have a friend who did...he got a lot of bruises and stuff. Looks like you were distracted, i guess."

Her eyes were filled with worry and she lifted her hand to touch it...
"well, thats better than you thinking i'm a battered child." he said, sighing, half offended. " Yeah, I'm learning martial arts. european fighting actually... " he sighed.

"Look, i think we got off to a bad start... I've just been trygin to dodge the bullies all weak because i don't want anyone to know about my training, okay?" he asked.

"uhm,. you wanna tag along with me while i pick up my bike from the repair store over there?" he asked with a big smile.
Rose smiled and nodded.

"Sure." She set her bike against the glass again and followed him to the bike shop. Looking around, she realized that she never stepped foot into the shop, ever.

"Which one is yours?" She asked looking at all of the new bikes.
"Arnie is working in the back on it right now." he said, walkgin in past teh unattended register and intot eh back shop.

"Hey arnie, you done yet?" he said. the response was a wrnch flyign out of nowhere and a bunch of italian cussing flinging from the other end of the room.

"Hey, you're lucky." jack said " he's in a good mood!" he laughed, walkign over to his bike on the rack.

"YEAH",yeah, yeah... its done, now get that space age piece of steel out of my shop!" he said, crankign the gears of another bike rather hard, loosening a bunch of rust.

Jack went over tot eh rack and pulled the bike down. "Hey arn, what was wrong with it?" he asked before they exited the place.

"There was mud in the brakelines, and plantmatter in everything else." he answered.


"God that guy is a wierdo." he said, shivering. he set his bike next to rose's. "So.. can i treat you to a plate of fries at Donna's diner or something?" he said, tryign not to sound desperate for attantion. in truth, he welcomed the chance to have friendly conversation with someone OTHER than his covenant mates.
Rose was fumbling with her camera when a wrench wizzed passed her head. She yelped and almost dropped her lens. Reattaching it, Rose looked at him as he pulled his bike out.

"Um...sure." Rose said, taking his offer. She tried not to stare at his previous black eye which is now just a light purple hue. She followed him to the diner. When they sat down, Jack ordered a plate of fries and Rose finally gathered the courage to ask,

"Okay, what is up with this? Yesterday, you had a limp and lost it by lunch, today you have or had...i don't know a black eye and now its basically gone. What is going on?"