One Life for Another

Chapter 4 Meeting my Beloved

Gem sat quietly at a desk in the parlor, a blank sheet and quill mocked her as she sighed. The woman was depressed and stressed out of her mind because of the police, the baby and most of all dealing with the death of her beloved Andrew. To deal with the pain, the brown-haired beauty distracted herself by cleaning and cooking around the parlor; occasionally she would sew clothes for Ryder or help Undertaker with the bodies.

Unfortunately, seeing the bodies only made things worst since every time Gem looked inside the coffins Andrew's face would come to mind. She now sat near her desk trying to think of a good story to write for her job; Gem was a journalist for the London Gazette and a dare good one too. Her writings were very well known by many in the city; only they had no idea the articles were written by a woman.

In the newspaper, Gem went by her alias name G. M Nikon who would give advice whether it was on politics, family life, courting or problems in society. Personally, to keep anyone from suspecting who she was her boss Mr. Crowds gave her a private office, but the catch was Gem had to enter in the back alley way for safety.

Her job was hard and tiring but paid extremely well; the reason Gem was able to pay for her and Andrew's nice townhome. How she longed to return to it but sadly could not; her curtain situation was not easy but with Undertaker's assistance it was bearable. He even made himself Ryder's personal babysitter and playmate; at the thought Gem strolled to the door way leading to Undertaker's shop. There he was working on the bodies while keeping an eye on a peacefully sleeping Ryder. The mortician gave her a smile then returned to his work; Gem sat back at the desk placing the blank paper and quill inside of it.

She decided to write the article later after all Gem was on maturity leave because of Ryder and she still had five more days to finish it." You don't look so good dearie." Gem jumped almost falling out of the stool she sat in; the woman glared at the mortician," No in fact I'm right as rain." He chuckled, then frowned;" You may say that but I'm a divine being dearie I can tell when something is wrong long before you can. And if you don't rest you'll get sick."

She stared at the floor," Humans are such fragile creatures." Undertaker laughed at her words as Gem went to lie on the sofa." Heh, heh how did you know about the reaper saying?" The beauty gazed at Undertaker her eyes filled with sorrow and longing," Andrew taught me that life is precious; you reapers are not as immortal as you seem after all if you get thorns of death or are killed with your scythe your goners. But, you ignore this and don't really value life; yet humans are fragile our lives are a fleeing moment. And I try and cherish every bit of mine."

"Such wise words from someone so young, but you are right many reapers don't value their lives because they believe they can live forever. But it is rare for a reaper to care about a human life." He said Gem remained silent her eye lids closed as tears marred her cheeks," Not unless the reaper is truly in love with one." Undertaker's smile vanished, he was curious about Gem's relationship with Andrew from what he had heard their love went farther than any between a human and a reaper.

He moved to sit on the floor in front of the sofa, scooting until he was close to Gem's face," Could you please tell me about how you guys met?" The brunette perked up surprised but grateful that someone wanted to hear the tale that started their love." Alright I'll tell you."

The Past: Gem and Andrew's first meeting- age sixteen

It was a dark starry night; Gem and her best friend Ira were walking home from stacking newspapers at the London Gazette."Ah, my shoulder is killing me! How long before we become journalists Gem?"Ira said massaging her tense muscles. Gem twirled her long strands in her hand," I told you if we want to become journalists then we have to work our way up the ladder and it's going to be a lot harder since we are women."

Ira clenched her fists," No matter all we need is a chance gender has nothing to do with it, why must society be so harsh!" Gem placed her hand against Ira's mouth," Shh, it was not our choice we were just born into this cruel world; all we do is deal the best we can. Now keep your voice down its late and we don't want to attract attention." Ira frowned, but nodded;" Whatever let's just get home I'm getting a chill down my spine."

The girls hurried down the street when they were ambushed by two robbers; "Well what do we have here two lovely young ladies." They moved close to Gem and Ira, one of the guys pushed Ira against the wall and began searching her for valuables. The other held Gem to the ground as Ira struggled; she opened her mouth to scream," Don't even think about it or we'll kill your little friend here." He said motioning to Gem, fear in her eyes.

Suddenly a strong gust of wind caught the group's attention a young handsome man stood a few feet away perched causally on the side of a brick wall. He wore a dark black suit with a tie and held in his hands a circular saw, "Gentleman why must you be so violent after all these lovely ladies have done nothing to deserve your hatred. You should go home like good boys and think about what you've done."

He stated waving his hand in a feminme motion," Yeah right; like we gonna listen ta you!" the second robber charged at the man who smiled sinisterly," So be it your funeral." He pulled the cord switching on the scythe that resting in his left hand. The robber began throwing punches at the man who easily and skillfully dodged the hot tempered thief. With a flip, the man slashed the robber's shoulder sending him into the ground writhing in pain; "Frankie!"

The other one grabbed a pipe charging at the man, "No one hurts my brother!" He said swinging the pipe and missing the guy by a head." Really darling ironic." A voice from the roof said immediately a figure dressed entirely in red jumped in front of the man," Because no tries to hurt my brother either! "Without hesitation, the man in red drove in chainsaw into the robber who eventually fell down dead.

"You know Grell I could have handled that myself. "Andrew said gathering the souls of the robbers. "But you didn't did you besides you know how protective I am! I can't bear to see my baby brother hurt! "Andrew rolled his eyes, his fingers stroking his cherry blonde hair;" Your worse than mom you know that." Grell crossed his arms," Is it my fault that I'm the spitting image of our dear mother; absolutely not!"

Andrew glared at Grell," Ok first off we look like dad, second you and I only inherited mom's eyes, third I was only saying you were overprotective and it's not your fault since you're practically a woman." Grell smiled embracing his brother, their attention moved to Gem who was trying to awaken an unresponsive Ira. Andrew walked calmly over to them, he lean toward Ira feeling her heartbeat and sighing happily;" Don't worry she'll be okay." His yellow-green meeting the beautiful ruby colored eyes; for the first time Andrew felt himself grow weak in a human female's presence.

"Thank you." She said standing to her full height; from where they were standing Andrew was three inches taller than her. "I'm Gem Collins, my friend you saved is Ira Lampard and you are? "Andrew stood nervously still staring into the brunette's breathtaking ruby orbs." Andrew Sutcliff at your service. "A huff was heard behind him and the reaper sighed," Oh forgot! This is my big brother Grell Sutcliff." Gem stared at the man confused because he was in female attire; "Charmed to meet you darling!"

"Nice to meet you I assume Ms. Sutcliff since you are a transgender." Grell squealed and jumped about happily." I like this girl! Anyway we must go chao darlings!" He flew into the air landing on a nearby rooftop to wait for Andrew. "Will I ever see you again?" Gem asked her beauty shining in the moonlight capitiving Andrew. He took her hand and kissed it;" Of course." Andrew handed her a whistle, Gem took it confused.

"This is a special instrument of my own creation, only I can hear its sweet melody from wherever I am. Blow it and I will come as promised. "With that Andrew did a flip landing on the rooftop; him and Grell soon disappearing into the realm of the reapers.

Gem took a breath as she ended the story, Undertaker staring at her with a blank expression." Heh, heh adorable story but seems a little farfetched for one referring to love." She glared standing from the sofa," Well it really happened and besides we were not in love yet! I don't care if you don't believe my story just spare my feelings as a widow!" Immediately, Ryder's cries echoed through the parlor a sigh escaping Gem lips;" If you'll excuse me I need to check on my son." The new mother stomped out of the room leaving Undertaker to rethink his last words.

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