The Clockmakers Daughter

The Return of White

Julius paced his office, worried about things best left forgotten, in his opinion. Still, his eyes would stray to that one place where he had been trapped against the wall. His lips still tingled from time to time and he thought he was losing his mind. “Stop thinking about it, he was probably just messing with you anyway.” He said quietly to the empty room. In sheer frustration, he decided to see what his daughter was up to since he had no work to distract him.

Aliya hummed happily to herself as she sat in the grass in front of the clock tower, watching the ever changing sky. A few time changes had passed since her father’s tea party and it had been particularly hard not to tease Julius or let on that she knew what had happened. Still, she had spent her time well, spending the night with her kitty cat who purred in his sleep. The following day had been spent with the twins at the tower, Blood and Elliot out doing things she was better off not knowing. Not so surprisingly, the clockmaker had found himself busy outside of his home for the day. It had been nice to relax and enjoy the company of her friends, she was completely rested and in full power once more. Soon it would be time to visit her Nightmare.

A shadow crept over her, blocking the midday sun. Glancing over, she saw the last person she had ever wanted to. “What do you want, White?”

He sat down beside her. “I want you, of course. However you have to finish those pesky trials before I can take you.” He sounded truly disgruntled.

“As if you could take me. I have no wish to go with you or be with you in any manner. Get over it and find a new hobby.” She stood up, irritated. She had returned to her favored clothing, blue corset with black lace, and jeans with black boots with blue roses climbing up her calves.

He looked up at her, breath caught at her furious beauty. How he craved her, her touch, her taste, to be buried inside her once more. White could still feel the currant her power had caused over his skin. Standing too, he replied, “I am afraid that I have to try.” Circus workers appeared out of thin air, grabbing her before she could from a weapon and fire on them. Still she sneered, “You are such a fool.” Drawing her power around her, she flung them away from her, ring forming into a firearm, spraying the area with bullets, making sure to catch White right between the eyes, blood covering his pristine suit like killing on freshly fallen snow. More and more faceless surrounded her, even she was having trouble keeping up.

“Aliya!” Julius called from one of the towers many balconies. He had heard the gunshots. Though a common sound in Wonderland it was rare to hear it near the tower, supposing to be a neutral zone.

“DAD!” She shouted, ducking and dogging arms and bullets. They really were not playing. Catching a bullet in her right side, she growled at the faceless before pressing the barrel of her gun in his eye, firing. “Get Nightmare!”

Immediately, he lay down on the cool floor and sent himself into the void faster than he ever had before. “Nightmare!” He shouted. In no time, the dark figure was before him. “Help her please!”

“Aliya?” He asked, noticing that the clockmaker was out of breath and likely suffering from motion sickness from his rush.

“White’s trying something, she’s holding her own, but she told me to come for you.” He gasped, trying not to vomit.

“Stay and rest. I will be back to help you momentarily.” Nightmare sent a vibe to Blood, knowing that he was closest to the tower and also to Boris. It was not that he did not think that Aliya and himself could not handle the problem, but it might help to show White what he was up against. Quickly he flashed himself in the middle of the chaos. He ducked just in time to keep his nose from being broken by his love. “You called.”

“Yep,” she said, disarming a sad looking clown with lethal looking claws. “Think you could use some of that power I’ve been feeding you and help.” The last part seemed particularly aggravated.

“Anything for you, love.” With a great thrust of power leaving him like hurricane winds, the faceless fell before them, slowly fading until only dozens of clocks lay on the ground.

“Thank you.” Aliya said, catching her breath. Looking around, she did not see Whites body, assuming that he had recovered and left.

“Aliya?” Julius called weakly from the entryway of the tower. Nightmare looked at him and shook his head. He would be sickly for a little bit, but nothing serious and he just could not blame him for wanting to help his daughter.

“I’m alright, Daddy.” She said, looking around her, “But I’m afraid that you are going to be busy for the next few time changes." She looked up to see Blood and the twins arrive with Boris. They took in the scene around them.

“Congratulations, Nightmare. You may have even come close to my record.” Blood said admiringly. He took in the damage with a pleased grin on his face.

Ace stumbled out of the woods, having heard the commotion. He had gotten lost on his way home from the tower. Again. He whistled shrilly, “Damn, this is going to take a bit to clean up.”

Out of nowhere, arms wrapped around Aliya, sharp blade pressed to her throat. “That was not nice, my lady bitch.” White said, his breath hot against her ear. “Allow me to return the favor so that your lovers will see how truly helpless they are to protect you.” The blade dug into her skin, quickly cutting across her throat, hot blood pouring from the wound. Her eyes widened as her vision beginning to fade, the burning of the puncture taking all of her attention. She never noticed the men screaming for her, or the vial that White had held, gathering her blood as it flowed from her. As her body went limp, he allowed her to fall to the ground, disappearing, but not before being riddled with bullets from four different weapons.

Nightmare rushed to her side, pulling her onto his lap, waiting in agony mirrored by those around him until her body jerked, filling with life once more. She raised up her hand to her throat, eyes blazing in fury. The men began to breathe again as well, their lives beginning and ending with the girl in front of them,

“He fuckin killed me, the son of a bitch!” Aliya stood pacing, not even realizing that a hazy purple light had begun to rise off her body in waves. “Just wait, the next time I drop him, I’ll gut him just for shits and giggles.” A scream of angered frustration escaped her. The coward, I will hunt him down like the prick he is. She thought to herself

“Aliya.” Julius called weakly, before vomiting and sliding down the wall, his face ashy white.

“Daddy!” she shouted, concern over riding her temper. She went to his side, pushing his dark hair from his face. “Are you ok?”

“I’m fine. Are you? You did just die!” He said, his voice sorrowed, irritated, grumbly and queasy all at once.

“I am fine. You know that I cannot truly die in Wonderland, no more than the jokers can. He was just being a prick cause I offed him first.” She brushed it off for now, angering many of the men behind her. Before they could start on her, she looked up at them. “Father, can you help me get Daddy to his room, then well go to his office where you all can yell at me until you feel better. Maybe.” She added.

“I can go on my own!” The clockmaker said huffily.

Blood grinned slightly. He pulled him up, placing Julius’s arm across his shoulders. “I will gladly help.” He began to walk with him back into the tower, Aliya walking behind them, the others beginning to gather the clocks that littered the ground. “You know that it is my honor to take you to bed, Julius.” Blood said strait faced. Aliya snorted before she could help herself, covering her mouth with her hands.

Julius turned beat red. “Bastard.” He did not try to jerk away due to another bout of nausea passed through him. He just wanted to lay down now that the danger had passed. At that point in time he did not care if half of Wonderland crawled into bed with him, so long as he was there.

The group, minus an already sleeping Julius, found themselves in his office filled to the brim with malice for the White joker. “Relax, guys he was not trying to kill me, well permanently anyway.” She sat in front of Boris who was stretched out on Julius’s couch. His pink tale immediately wrapping around her, the little fishbone charm laying across her left leg. “I myself can’t figure out why he would attack me directly after mentioning that he could not have me until my trials were done. So why attack?”

None of them could figure out why he had done such a thing, unless it was just because he could. The jokers had always been a little wild and unpredictable. They were the next oldest role holders, in between Nightmare, Gray and Gowland, followed by Blood, Julius, and Vivaldi who became role holders around the same time, Boris and Elliot were next and the twins and Pierce were the youngest. All still holding their roles for a record breaking amount of time. Aliya did not like to think of it, unable to bear the thought of losing any of them close to her. In the meantime, they would all be a lot more careful. Aliya was never to be alone and they all would be guarding them when Nightmare and she came together, overriding all of her protests on the subject.

Nightmare himself was fuming. There had to be a reason he had taken blood from her. This attack was planned, the joker had thrown away half of his circus for that vail, why? The question plagued him constantly. Only the mother might know, but she had always been quite blind to the jokers for some reason, they too were different from other role holders. In any case, he agreed that they should be guarded in their most vulnerable moments and Aliya would go nowhere alone anymore. He would not let his love fall into the joker’s hands.

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