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Chapter 7: Legacy to live by

“Since you all find it so enjoyable to fight that what we will be doing today.” Black smoke circled his feet as wooden staffs appeared on the floor. “Grab a staff and when I call your name come into the center for battle. This is a test to see how each person fends on their own. No help will be given from their partners, do I make myself clear?”

We all stood in line to get our staffs while the demons and angels stood center waiting for further instruction. I coughed and I walked over to Pitch. His hand passed over my chest and the bleeding stopped. The cut in my clothes sewed up along with the cut as if I was never hit. He then handed me the wood and pointed me to the seats.

Angels flew up to the stands taking one or two people at a time. Fawn seemed annoyed when she had to carry me up as if she shouldn’t have to bother.

I sat alone in the black plastic chairs, I look to see the others sitting close by each other to watch the games commence. Making me realize just how alone I truly am. Ten minutes here and I’ve already turned a room of people against me; that’s a new record. I miss my friend and my family. I’d rather be home with them all and have my daily beatings from Palace than be here. At least Palace doesn’t try to kill me with a whip. I hate it here, I hate it so very much. The only person who wants anything to do with me is the devil’s daughter! The only reason she even speaks to me is because she’s hungry and I’m her snack. I disgust her. She has never given me a straight answer with full truth. Echo is filled with lies and evil runs through her veins with a darkness I will never understand.

Echo came and sat next to me with not a single word. She seemed irritated by the presence of Pitch and by his reparation of her. She bit her thumb nail ignoring my presence and focusing on her own thought. I growled with my own annoyance towards her. She lacked any emotion but anger and irritation. Everything I despise in the world was wrapped up in her. I glanced over to see her red eyes. My red eye, she should have left me dead. In giving me this opportunity I couldn’t turn it down but to know what she is and who she is sends chills up my spine. My life wasn’t worth saving. Why couldn’t she have just protected everyone else in the car and just left me to die? Why am I special? I should just end it.

I remember feeling like this once before. I had come home in the crazy of afternoon rush of the house. My spirit had shattered with little hope of ever repairing. I took a look around the world only seeing what was wrong with it and how everything hates me. Nothing had gone right that day. Palace had found new methods of making my life a living Hell with now beating on Greg. I could do nothing to help him due to my own fear causing tension to our friendship erupting in a verbal fight in the center of everything. That day Palace had locked me in a janitor closet and no one cared enough to unlock the door or even wonder where I had gone. The janitor eventually found me sending me home around eight at night. I found my way home through the back ways of the New York streets and eventually made it inside.

Our house was colder than normal. I remember seeing the piles of past due bills on the table. Our heat was gone leaving us shivering through the night. That night I listened to a lecture given by my parents exclaiming how worried they were and how they assumed I was in a gang or some bull shit like that, I honestly wasn’t really listening. There was only one thing on my mind that night. Both of my parents left for the night shifts so I was in charge of Julian and Cassie. I remember how attached I had grown to Cassie she had just moved in with us and she couldn’t seem more happy about it. A semi warm bed was better than none and one meal was still more than zero. I recall thinking to myself that I’d miss her more than anyone.

I headed up to my room while Cassie and Julian watched some annoying cartoon that they were both slaves too. I recollect the feeling that heed in my throat when I thought about them. My room was quiet with the slight sound of the TV from below. The creaking of the closest door when I pulled it open still haunts me. The rope I had looked at so often hung from the ceiling. I had put it up and taken it down countless times. I remember the iron chair that lay against the wall with a chilling sentence.

The scraping of metal will forever ring in my ears. The soft step I took climbing my courage to get it over with. I remember counting down my seconds. I was going to do it, I was going to get it over with when something stopped me. The door to my bed room opened slowly with the calling of Cassie. She was so young, so innocent I couldn’t let her see my true self. From that day I have had that image burned in my skull, I have to keep strong for Cassie and Julian. If Cassie can go through so much so can I. But she’s gone now, nothing holds me back except the goal to save them. I will finish this, I will beat the devil’s deal and I will save them. I will save Cassie.

I snapped from my thought as Pitch called the first names. “Lucia and Max.”

Max and Lucia were flown down by Fawn which they then proceeded to the center ring holding their staffs tightly in their hands. Lucia took the first position facing sideways staff in left hand pointed at Max. Max frowned holding the wood forward with both hands. A siren rebounded through the hall as they began their fight. Max swung first as Lucia caught his pole with hers. Her hands twisted fast as she grabbed both staffs pulling the wood out of Max’s hands. Max jumped back as Lucia swung both staffs simultaneously. A wicked laugh came from her mouth as she snapped one of the poles over her leg. Max began running towards her and then baseball style slid across the ground between her legs grabbing one half of the broken staff. He gained his balance behind her. He thrusted forward only to be blocked by her pole. I could tell both parties were panting. Lucia smiled widely as she pushed against Max’s half. Max pushed back against her strength with little effect. Her body shifted sideways as she released her left hand. Max went tumbling forward with Lucia following closely behind him. She took the end of her pole hitting his neck.

“Dead,” Lucia laughed helping Max off the ground.

“All that to get a hit on them?” I asked myself aloud.

“A deadly hit,” Echo replied.

“Didn’t ask you,” I huffed under my breath.

“And I didn’t ask you to be a whiny little bitch now did I?” Echo said in an overly peppy voice.

“What gives you the right?” I asked irritated.

“And what’s your problem?” She asked flurrying her eyebrows.

“My problem is I’m in contract with the definition of evil,” I exclaimed.

“Maybe you should try to get to know me before you judge me. But I mean why should you? No one else does, I am known by my father’s name and that’s all I’ll ever be isn’t it? Demon, human, angel, you’re all the same,” she snapped.

Echo stood as Pitch called her name. Fawn flew over to bring her down but she refused. Echo walked over to the edge of the wall jumping down to the gym below. Cracks formed across the floor as she landed. It look like something you’d see in the movies. She walked to the center with no signs of pain or discomfort from the fall.

Hallow soon met her in the center as his name was too called. Echo steamed with anger as the sirens called. The first thing she did was brush her arms past her legs. Her whole body light into flames as it had before. Hallow jumped back with evident concern on his face. Smoke came off her body and she fired several flames at him. She yelled as Hallow avoided the hits. His black shoes landed on one of many jungle gym like objects. Echo followed him which turned into a cat and mouse chase. She shot several more flames at him with one hitting him square on the back. Hallow fell from the bar landing against the floor and Echo jumping down to meet him. Hallow reached for his glasses pulling them off as she came closer. His eyes turned a yellow tint as Echo froze in her place. Her flames cooled to smoke as she stood helplessly to his gaze. In a matter of moments he stood never breaking his glare. Echo screamed a blood curdling scream as she tried to glance away with little luck.

Lucia and Gaven came over sitting in the row behind me. Lucia leaned on my shoulder whispering into my ear, “You really pissed her off did you?”

“I guess, I was just so tired of her lies,” I said never taking my eyes off the fight.

“You know Dom, mirrors are a strange thing they're like echoes, just copies of yourself.” Her voice was much like a serial killer’s on a crime drama shows.

I turned towards them to be met with nothing. I blinked several times thinking about what had just happened. Lost I returned to watching the battle.

Echo had successfully closed one of her eyes giving her a little more movement than she had before. Flames flew from her mouth hitting Hallow in the face. The demon boy covered his eyes from the impact and Echo seemed to regain control of herself. She rushed him grabbing his neck with both hands. She squeezed causing him to yelp. Hallow slapped Echo with one of his hands causing her to loosen her grip enough where he could escape. Hallow pulled Echo’s shadowy hair to the ground where he pinned her. Echo kicked against Hallow’s side hard triggering him to spit up slightly. The same black liquid came from his mouth that Echo had. Hallow pulled back his hand and held it high. Black nails grew from his fingers matching those from a wild animal but much longer and sharper. He threw his hand down impaling Echo’s chest with the claws. Her scream much like her name echoed off the walls as Hallow stood from her brushing the black off him. Echo continued to lay on the ground as Hallow walked away. Faces of shock filled the audience from the sight just seen. Echo slowly stood holding her breasts. Her face was painted with red blush.

Angels flew both parties up to the seating area. Echo walked over to me seating a row back. She kept silent and her face never changed from the apple coloring.

I turned to her, “Are you ok?”

“Hallow’s a pervert and It’s not like you care. I’m just a demon remember?” She spat.

“Look I’m sorry but can you blame me?”

“I can’t blame everyone,” she growled.

Several others went, Fawn to Lue, Gaven and Rainia, Danny to Sasha leaving me and Annabell. Angels flew us down to the area. I looked at Annabell who smiled looking at the pole she was going to beat me with. I looked up to Echo who stared at me with a distaste.

I sighed, “I am going to get my ass kicked aren’t I?”

Echo nodded as we continued to descend. I walked to the center holding my pole tightly. This is just like Palace, enjoying the daily beatings and I being too weak to do anything about it. She’s just a mirror image of him, but worst. My mind bounced, mirror. A mirror can crack so easily from anger, a mirror is so weak but has so much effect on someone. People spend their lives obsessing over their image in the mirror. I looked up at Echo who seemed worried about the upcoming events.

“A mirror is like an echo, just a reflection of oneself,” I whispered to myself.

The siren called through the room. Annabell throws the first swing which I mirror blocking the hit. She held the wood in her right hand while I held mine in my left. She swung again at my knees and again I mirror, we both cringe from the blow. She looks at me with anger. I smile a cocky grin as I continue to copy her movements. Annabell jumped back and I followed creating double the distance between us. She growled loudly in annoyance from my constant repetition.

“Learn to fight on your own!” She yelled with anger evident in her voice.

“Learn to fight on your own!” I yelled coping her even further.

She screamed in annoyance charging me which I followed in the same manner. She pointed the cane strait to hit me in the stomach which I did the same. The sticks hit end to end as we crashed together. Both staffs snapped as a result. Annabell threw the broken halves down and I followed.

“Stop copying me,” she whined.

“Stop copying me,” I repeated, laugher could be heard from the audience.

“Quit it you're so immature.”

“Quit it you're so immature,” I repeated.

“Fine be that way,” she yelled walking calmly towards me.

“Fine be that way.” I reacted following her action.

We stood in arm’s length reach from each other. Her smile seemed sweet with mischief in the expression.

“You’re the type to be respectful, awkward, shy, and most likely never had a girlfriend before aren’t you?” Annabell spoke with a babyish tone.

“You’re the type to be respectful, awkward, shy, and most likely never had a girlfriend before aren’t you?” She’s right but where is she going?

She reached out her left hand and I reached out my right. Her fingers stroked my chest sexually as she waited for me to do the same or to break. I could feel the sweat falling from my forehead as I thought. Cat calls and whistles rang from the audience. I smiled reaching for my pistol with my left hand. The white gun was then placed against her coffee hair with a surprised expression on her face.

I smiled, “dead.

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