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the First

By off2neverland

Romance / Adventure

The Shadow

Finally, the screen goes black. I look over at Luke, he's passed out. Mouth open, double chin, the whole package. His light blonde hair is disheveled, and his tall six foot three frame is curled onto the corner of the couch. He's been my best friend ever since the summer my dad died. We spend so much time together a lot of people assume we're dating. Generally speaking, he's pretty attractive, and could fit into the popular crowd if he wanted to. But, he's as smart as I am, we spend a lot of our nights studying for AP exams. Also, he doesn't have a thing for girls with a few pounds of makeup on their face, unlike most guys at our school. Why is it that I always end up staying awake until the end of the movies he picks out? I dig around for my phone and quickly turn back to him. Turning the flash on, I snap at least three pictures. He's gotten enough bad pictures of me that I don't feel any guilt.

"Luke..." I softly say into his ear. Nothing. I tap his nose. Not even a twitch.

"Luke." I say it a little louder.

I tap his arm. Nothing. What is wrong with him?

"Luke Jackson. You just made me waste my Saturday night suffering through Peter Pan. Get your ass up or I'll get it up for you."

"Relia," he moans, "go away. I'm tired."

"You made me watch a Disney movie at the age of eighteen, and you fell asleep! Wake up."

He punches my arm, "Not eighteen yet!"

"Yeah, yeah." I respond, standing up and stretching.

"What time is it?" he asks.

I glance at the clock on the wall, "Two thirty six in the morning. Ouch."

He sighs, "Can I crash here?"

I smile, "Of course. I'm going to get ready for bed, you stay here."

"I'll text my mom."

I walk out of the room, and into my bedroom. Having the whole basement to myself is awesome. I open my closet and select a tank top and shorts, and walk into my bathroom. I yank my hair into a messy bun, change out of my clothes, and brush my teeth. I walk back into the living room, where Luke has made us a bed on the floor. He's standing at the glass door staring out into the night.

"Are the stars out?" I ask.

He whips around, the look of a child being caught with his hand in the cookie jar crosses his face before he covers it with a grin.

"Ta-da!"

He gestures at the floor, proud of his work. I roll my eyes and walk over to my side, right, as usual. He climbs in on left.

"Not it!" I shout.

"Dammit!"

He uncovers himself, gets up, and walks over to the wall, flicking the lights off. I hear his feet pad over the carpet, and he climbs back into "bed".

"Goodnight." he says.

"Goodnight." I reply.

The room falls silent. I try to fall asleep, and can't. Soon, I hear his breathing even out, and he's asleep. Another positive about Luke? He doesn't snore. I turn onto my back, staring up at the ceiling. I listen to Luke's breathing. I can feel sleep coming, I'm getting tired. A massive bang sounds through the room, loud enough to wake Luke up and send him to me.

"What was that?" he asks, peering into my face.

I'm just as scared as he is, "It sounded like something big smacked into the door."

A look of manic excitement crosses his face and he lets go of me and stands. Walking, more like running, to the wall, he flicks the light switch and whirls towards the window. With the light, the window is illuminated. There's nothing there. He creeps closer, I stay huddled under my blankets. He reaches the window and peers through, and turns back to me, an odd look of disappointment on his face, "There's nothing there."

"Are you sure?" I ask.

He nods, "Yeah, pretty sure. It's all dark out there."

"Will you turn on the porch light?"

"Yeah."

He walks over to the sliding glass door and flicks the switch, and the light outside the door clicks on, washing over the porch. Being able to see what is happening outside is a great comfort.

"Thanks." I smile up at him.

He smiles back, "Let's go back to bed."

"Okay."

He walks back over to the wall and flicks the switch, the lights in the room go dark. The only light left in the room is from the light outside. I roll onto my side and watch the outside through the glass door. I see something move on the far right corner of the glass, and then a shadow suspiciously in the shape of a man passes by the window incredibly fast. I gasp and sit up, Luke doesn't awaken. I'm imagining things. Right?

I get out of our makeshift bed and walk quickly over to the glass door, peering out towards where the shadow went. There's nothing, the vegetable garden is empty and there's nothing in the bushes. Did it go around to the side of the house? I glance back at Luke, he's sound asleep. Taking a deep breath, I unlock the door and slide it open. A gust of summer air blows into the room. I step out into the warm Colorado night and slide the door shut behind me as quietly as I can. My bare feet touch the stone slabs of the bottom deck, and the light breeze lifts my long brown hair from the back of my neck. It's actually a nice evening, not too hot or too cold. There is no noise from Knight, so I assume he's asleep. I tiptoe over the stone onto the rougher rocks on the side of the house. Carefully peering around the corner, I see nothing. Some piles of rocks, but nothing too out of the ordinary. I'm about to turn away and go back inside when I notice a larger pile of rocks in the middle of the hill.

And then it moves.

Oh my god, it's a person! I approach cautiously, ignoring the pain as a few rocks jab my feet. I crouch next to the man, his eyes are closed and he's lying on his back, breathing hard. In the moonlight, I can tell he has chestnut brown hair with light tints of red, and he's tall and muscular. He looks like he's my age, maybe older. He's actually pretty hot…

I place my hand on his arm, "Are you okay?" panic leaks into my voice.

His eyes snap open, a brilliant green, and lock with my light blue ones. He inhales sharply and pulls his arm away from my touch and towards his right side, and then I notice what he's wearing. Nothing like a normal guy would wear, light brown pants and a white top, like someone straight out of the Renaissance. He has black leather boots that reach his mid calf, and his shirt is stained with blood. Lots and lots of blood. I gasp and stare at his shirt, unable to move for a moment. His breathing becomes faster and he grips his side tightly. I take another deep breath and reach down to grasp the hem of his shirt, careful not to touch his wound. I slowly pull it up and over his head, and his wound comes into view.

"Oh my God. You've been shot!"

He then speaks for the first time, even through the pain I can tell his voice is smooth and sweet.

"I'm aware."

"What happened?" I ask curiously.

"Nothing. Hand me that bag, will you?"

Bullshit answer, but I'll let it slide. His voice has become stronger and more defined. He's incredibly handsome. I look over to where he gestured, and notice a small brown sack tied with a weathered piece of white string. I reach over and grab it, it's the size of a tennis ball and feels about the same weight. I can feel small grains of something inside. I turn back to him, placing the bag in his outstretched hand. He undoes the string, and reaches inside to grab the sand. He withdraws a pinch of the sparkling white powder, and sprinkles it onto his injury. The effect is almost immediate. He sighs in relief, and the sand glows a little as it seems to sink into his bullet wound. Before my eyes, the sand heals it to as good as new. All he's left with is a few bloodstains on his stomach.

I am literally about to faint. What the hell is happening?

"Um, here. Let me go get you a new shirt. Wait here, okay?"

He gives me an odd look, "Alright."

I gingerly pick up his bloodstained shirt and walk back over the rocks to the deck. Delicately sliding the glass door open, I walk back into the living room. Luke is still sound asleep. I allow myself to have a small freak out moment. A very hot guy was shot and dying on the side of my house, and a sparkling white sand just healed it? What? I didn't see anyone else in the area, who shot him? Is he a criminal? I tiptoe across the carpet and deposit the ruined shirt onto the coffee table. I continue walking to the guest bedroom, where I cross to the wardrobe on the far wall. I open it and grab one of my grandfather's old shirts, and walk back out into the summer night.

"Okay, here. This should fit." I look up, and nothing is there. He's gone without a trace. There are no bloodstains or remnants of white sand, just rocks. There was no way I imagined all of that!

"Hello?"

Nothing. Just the breeze moving through the trees and bushes. I sigh and turn back to the house, shirt still in hand, and slide open the door. Stepping into the room, I turn and make sure to lock the door behind me. I walk to the guest bedroom and deposit Grandfather's shirt, and walk back to the living room. The man's bloodstained shirt is still on the coffee table. What am I going to do with this? It's still wet with blood. I pick it up and walk back to my room, and slide open my closet. Selecting an empty hanger, I hang the shirt and place it in the back of my closet. With any luck, no one will find it. I walk back out of my closet and slide the door shut behind me. Walking back into the living room, I tiptoe over to the bed. As quietly as possible, I climb under the covers and get comfortable right as Luke wakes up. Thank God. He shifts a little. I can feel his eyes on me. I try as hard as I can to maintain the look of someone dead. He turns away and doesn't move again. I feel like I should do something! Call the police? No. They wouldn't believe me. No one will believe me. I don't think I even believe myself. What is happening?

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