Chapter 14: Good Tidings and Death Threats
“Spencer, get in here! Dinner is almost ready.” My mom shouted from the kitchen. I was sitting in the living room with my two cousins’ Carmen and Kelsey, watching reruns of The Mentalist on the huge flat screen in my grandparent’s living room. I was also contemplating on how to tell my grandparents about Reapers and demon hunters – maybe even tell them about the five elements that my kind possess. They know what I can do, but I doubt they knew about others like me. With these thoughts heavily on my mind, I sighed quietly and heaved myself off the couch. I wandered into the kitchen where my grandma, Aunt Tara, and my mother stood talking to one another. No doubt they were discussing about the latest gossip. My mother passed me a big bowl of mashed potatoes.
“Do you mind setting the table?” mom asked. “It would sure help us out a lot.”
“Sure,” I said. Mom smiled and turned back around to answer a question that Aunt Tara had asked. I retreated to the dining room after that.
After every placemat, plate, and silverware was situated, I decided to join mom and mammy in the kitchen. I was just about to open the door when I heard mammy ask, “So is Spencer enjoying that academy?”
I stopped at the door and held my breath as I listened closely to their conversation. How did mammy know I was attending the academy? Did mom tell her? Mom and grandma were pretty close. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised if she did.
“She loves it. I think she feels more at home and accepted there.”
“That’s good.” mammy said. She sounded genuinely pleased. “I’m just happy to know that she’s finally made some friends.”
“Me too. She’s really crazy about this boy named Jordan. He seems like a sweet kid.”
I smiled at the mention of Jordan’s name. It’s only been a couple of days and I miss him.
“What is it?” mammy asked. I shoved all thoughts of Jordan aside and refocused my attention on their conversation. It was silent for several minutes.
“Well, it’s Spencer. She’s been jumpy a lot here recently.”
“What do you mean?”
“She constantly jumps at every sound that takes place in the house and her face goes white every time she gets a letter. I don’t know why.”
“Maybe something happened at the academy that she’s not telling you about. You know her. She can be very secretive.”
“Yeah, because she knows I tend to overreact about everything.” She sighed. “I don’t know what to do, mom. I mean, I know she’s happy to be home, but I can’t help but feel like she misses it there.”
“Or maybe someone.” Mammy said. My mind instantly thought of Alex and I could feel my heart beat picking up at the thought of his face. Like Jordan, I missed him terribly. “Maybe she’s hiding more than what you know.”
“Like…” mom trailed off.
“Like maybe there’s a boy. Do you think her and Jordan—“
Mom cut her off. “No. I think she only sees him as a friend. And besides, even if they were to fall in love it would be...unhealthy.”
“Why? Because they have that bond thing?”
I fought back a giggle. Of course grandma wouldn’t remember the word “N’Sync”. I tried listening closely to hear mom’s answer. What did she mean it would be “unhealthy” if Jordan and I were to fall in love? Not that it mattered. I didn’t feel that way about Jordan at all.
“It has nothing to do with that. I’m just saying there’s more to her and Jordan’s relationship then them being best friends. Something both of them are unaware of. Mom, you can’t tell her this but Jordan actually is—“
I don’t know how it happened. It must have been fate’s way of telling me I couldn’t know what mom was about to say, because I somehow managed to slide on the wooden floor and bang my head against the door.
“OW!” I shouted as I clutched my forehead, trying to fight back tears as a sharp pain shot through my head. I instantly forgot what mom was about to say. Hell, at this point I didn’t care. I just wanted the pain to go away.
Mom and mammy rushed into the dining room and looked at me worriedly.
“Are you okay?” mom asked.
I was unable to find my voice so I just shook my head.
“Oh, poor baby.” Mammy said as she and mom helped me up. They both sat me gently in a chair. A second later I heard someone run out of the room. No doubt it was mammy – making it her mission to go search for painkillers. God, bless that woman.
“Let me see,” mom said. I felt as she tried to pry my hands off my face to take a look, but I didn’t know if I wanted her to see the damage. Knowing my mother, she might end up thinking I might need to go the emergency room. After five minutes went by, and she still hadn’t given up, I succumbed and I removed my hands. I heard an intake of breath and stiffened.
“What is it?” Was I bleeding profusely? I didn’t feel any blood. Maybe half my face was gone.
“Well,” mom said. “You definitely got a bump. What were you doing? Did you trip over your feet again?”
I pursed my lips, hoping that she didn’t see the guilt on my face. “Sure.”
Mom frowned. “You weren’t eavesdropping, were you?”
“Well, uh…no.” I eyed the fork and wondered if it was too late to stink myself with it.
Mom pulled away and crossed her arms, a scowl appearing on her face. “Spencer Danielle Mason—”
“Okay, okay.” I said my hands held high as if in surrender. It’s usually when my mom says my full name that I’m in real big trouble. “I might have heard a small part of your conversation.”
“And what part of the conversation was that?”
“Um, well…it had something to do with Jordan.”
“I knew it!” she exclaimed.
"But I fell and banged my head before I could hear anything else.” Mom bit her lip then, looking uncomfortable. It was my turn to scowl at her. “What are you keeping from me? And what does it have to do with me and Jordan?”
Mom sighed. “You’re not ready. Honestly, it’s probably best if you forget about everything I said to your mammy. That means, don’t go back to the academy and blabber to Jordan. I don’t need it getting back to his uncle—“
I cut her off, feeling bemused. “Mr. Grey,” mom looked like she wanted to stink herself with the fork too. “But what does he have to do with all this?”
“Let’s just say Mr. Grey has a little to do with your past and your future. That is all you need to know.”
I frowned. What does she mean by that? Did Mr. Grey’s involvement have something to do with my father? Suddenly my mind was pondering all kinds of questions as to how Mr. Grey had become a huge part of my life.
“Well, I’ll find out sooner or later. And when I do, I’ll show you that I am capable of being ready – whatever it is you two are hiding.”
Two weeks went by and I got back to my regular routines at the academy. Also December was approaching which meant I probably I had three or four weeks left of school for this semester. I shuddered. All my teachers – at the end of this semester – are supposed to give their students pop quizzes on everything we learned from the beginning of the school year to now. I knew it was important – that our instructors were only preparing us for the final exams that we are to take before the school year ends – but it was still tiring all the same. I knew I had a lot of studying and catching up to do.
It had snowed the night before and now the whole campus was shrouded with glistening snow. Everywhere I looked, I would see snow angels, snowmen, and groups of students (mostly ice and water users) have snowball fights. It was easier for the ice users. All they had to do was wield there power and voilà – they would have snowballs aimed at their enemies heads before the other team ever finished making their own snowballs. The snow came to about my knees, which made it kind of hard to walk. I knew I could have used my magic to help me walk through snow, but somehow using magic for everything didn’t seem right. So I just told myself to stop my bitching and kept walking. I started feeling sorry for turtles because I’m beginning to understand how they feel. I definitely felt like one as waddled through the snow.
It was a beautiful snowy day so I decided to take advantage of it. I had my Kindle tucked under my arm, with my right hand holding a Styrofoam cup full of hot chocolate as I looked for somewhere to sit. I finally made it to a picnic table, and as I dusted some of the snow off of the bench, I took a seat and pulled Kindie (as I liked to call her) out from under my arm and turned it on. I hadn’t read from her in a long time and I thought today was a good day to use her. I was relieved to see that she was fully charged and picked one of my favorite best-selling books The Hunger Games and started to read. I smiled to myself in contentment and drank some hot chocolate. I was completely immersed in chapter one.
That’s until a snowball hit me square in the face.
I screeched as I felt hot chocolate seep through my clothes, ruining the white fabric. I jumped up from my seat and accidentally dropped my Kindle in the snow. I barely noticed, for I was trying to summon my ice magic to cool the blotches on my skin. I groaned as the cold relieved me of the pain. When I finally got the stings from the burns under control, I sighed and picked up Kindie. I was relieved to see that she was alright.
It was then that I heard a bunch of girls laughing. I looked up and saw Abigail, Sarah, Madilyn, and Panty Less Lacey. They were all huddled over, laughing hysterically as they took in my less-than-perfect state. I felt my temper flare and while summoning my inner bitch, I started to march towards them. I don’t know if it was the cold that made them seem paler or the look on my face – but whatever it was – I was pleased.
“Nice coat,” Abigail said. I crossed my arms as we stood face-to-face. Abigail, due to her curly hair, was a couple inches taller than me. She smiled wickedly. “It’s too bad it’s ruined. It looked very expensive.”
That’s because it was. I got this coat from last year’s Christmas. It was a gift from my grandparents. I was proud to say I remained stoic as I looked into her evil, dark eyes. “Nothing a bit of soap and water can’t fix.” I replied, deadpan.
“Ooohhh,” she said. “Look at the ‘chosen one’ being all big and brave.”
“I’m not the chosen one.”
“Well, you must be since that’s all everyone talks about. Your big news! I wouldn’t be surprised if the Herald came and paid you a visit just to congratulate you.”
I could feel my tough exterior about to crack. Was she just trying to push me?
“Tell us,” Madilyn said. “Are you scaredthat he is coming for you? I mean, he already came after the candy lady. It’s only a matter of time before you’re next.”
“What about the candy lady?” I asked, confused. I had no idea what she was talking about. What did Sweet Sally have to do with this?
“You don’t know,” Sarah said, eyeing me stupidly. I shook my head. “There was a message on her door – a message that was in blood.” She leaned into me, our faces only three inches apart as she whispered, “It said that he’s coming!”
They laughed at my frightened expression. I frowned. “That is not something to laugh about. Do you not realize how serious this is?”
“Calm down,” Abigail said. “I’m sure it was Torchwood – just following in his daddies footsteps. Soon all the citizens of Hallowville will realize the truth.”
“You listen here,” Abigail and her friends took a step back, their eyes wary. “Alex is not his father. He is a totally different person!”
“You love him, don’t you?” Abigail sneered.
“What?” Whoa. Major change of subject. Where did that come from?
“Well, do you?” she pressed.
“I-I don’t know,” I stammered. “I’ve never been in love before so I wouldn’t know.” I couldn’t believe I was actually having this conversation with none other than Abigail Westchester.
“Well,” Lacey said. “You do stand up for him quite a lot.”
“We just find it very curious.”
“It’s none of your business what my relationship with Alex is. It’s between me and him. That’s all you need to know.” I snapped.
“Whatever,” Abigail said. “We know how you feel about him. Hell, everyone does.” Her smile was full of menace. “It’s just a shame that he doesn’t feel the same way.”
I felt like someone had just slapped me in the face.
Abigail and her groupies laughed as they vanished into the school, while leaving me alone in the courtyard with nothing but my troublesome thoughts and my fears of what was coming.
It was a sudden new change, but later that evening after getting a little homework done for tomorrow, my friends and I decided to hang in Mr. Grey’s class, along with Mr. Grey himself. This was sure to be awkward and little strange, especially when I thought about what my mom said.
Let’s just say Mr. Grey has a little to do with your past and your future. That is all you need to know.
I sighed. Some part of me really wanted to say something to Mr. Grey about it, but I refrained. Mostly I wanted to tell Jordan. I didn’t like keeping secrets from him.
As I predicted, it was awkward and strange hanging around Mr. Grey and in his classroom. I felt like I should be taking notes instead of listening to my friends blabber about inconsequential things. The only one that really seemed to notice my lack of interest was Mr. Grey.
“Is everything alright, Spencer?” he asked.
Everyone immediately went silent and stared at me wordlessly, their eyes full of curiosity.
His question caught me off guard. Was I alright? Hm. Well, not really. Not after hearing that Sally – the candy lady – was probably murdered because of me. But then I wondered something. Sarah had said that the message on the door was written in blood and that it said he’s coming. It made it sound like someone else had written it. I didn’t believe Alex did it, but I knew, somewhere in this school, someone was smiling and pretending to be my friend when really they want me dead. Like Scarlett, I don’t think Azazel typed that letter, nor do I believe he killed that rabbit. It had to be someone I know, just like Mia said.
My eyes scanned each of my friend’s faces as I eyed them coldly. “What happened to Sally? The candy lady. Abigail and her friends told me that she went missing and that there was blood on the door.” I could tell as one-by-one, my friends turned away to avoid my piercing gaze. They knew and yet they didn’t tell me. Why? “Do you know what it said?”
Still no answer.
“It said that he’s coming! And whoever did this is wandering hallways and corridors of this school. Smiling and laughing with or at me. I’m not sure. But whoever this person is, is working very closely to Azazel.” Everyone winced at the sound of his name, but very wisely did not rebuke me for it. I could feel tears filling my eyes as I looked at my friends. “He’s going to kill me, isn’t he?”
None of my friends answered me. Mr. Grey and Jordan eyed me apologetically.
“I’m going to die! He has someone that’s going to kill me and I’m not even prepared.”
“You’re not going to die!” Jordan said adamantly. I felt a tear as it slowly dripped down my face. My eyes never left Jordan’s as he crouched down in front me, taking both my hands in his. “I won’t let anything happen to you. It’s going to be okay.”
“It’s really hitting me,” I said, ignoring his last sentence. “I didn’t think much of it but I’m really starting to think that…that I might be…in a deeper mess then I thought.” Jordan wrapped his arms around me as I tried to fight back more tears from spilling over. It didn’t work. “What am I going to do?”
Everyone remained silent, but their eyes spoke of guilt and sorrow for my pain – for my fear. Yes, I was scared. I was so scared that my brain literally couldn’t function correctly. While Jordan held me, my mind started racing with unpleasant questions – questions I wasn’t ready to come to terms with. Is Azazel really coming back – to torment the people of Hallowville and Eden once more? Will he hurt my family just to get to me? Am I really the chosen one? I stopped the thought right there. There is no way I’m the chosen one. I am not the girl everyone has been waiting for! They’ve got the wrong half-Reaper. I pulled away from Jordan, grateful that he was my N’Sync and best friend. Without him and his comfort, I would have probably been a bigger mess if it weren’t for him. He smiled and patted me on the back before getting up and taking back his place beside his brother. I guess he wanted to give me some space. It wasn’t until I started calming down that one of my friends finally spoke.
“Did they ever find her body?” Gabby asked.
I wiped my face with my hands and took a deep breath before answering. “I don’t know. Abigail didn’t say.”
“Is he really returning?” Morgan asked, his face ashy pale. His question was directed at Mr. Grey. “Uncle, you don’t really think—“
“I don’t know what to think, Morgan. All I know is that we must be prepared. Until then – when the summer is upon us – you three—“he gestured at Jordan, Morgan, and Gabrielle. “Need to stop going out at night and hunting monsters. Because like it or not we’re going to be the ones that are hunted.”
It was a little after nine that I decided to go to bed. I was tired after a day with Abigail, and missing people, not to mention, breaking down in front of my friends. I realized that I had a trying day and I just wanted to escape reality and dream of happy things, like fields full of flowers or Disneyland.
I put on my pajamas and crawled into bed. Once I was tucked in, I curled into a ball, and closed my eyes, trying to sink into unconsciousness. But it was no use. My mind just couldn’t stop thinking about Sally and Azazel. I couldn’t stop thinking about the message on the candy shop door.
I sighed and scrambled out of bed. I decided to finish the rest of Tuesday’s homework, hoping that would take my mind off current events.
I loved English. If anything the homework definitely kept my mind preoccupied as I filled out the study guide that we would be going over Tuesday. I would also use this material to study for Thursday’s English test. I was just about finished when suddenly I was whisked inside Jordan’s mind.
“Oh no.” I murmured. This could not be happening. What was he doing that caused him to drag me into his head? The answer became obvious. Jordan and Alicia must have made some sort of improvement in their relationship in the last two weeks that we arrived back to the academy, because they were suddenly making out passionately in Jordan’s bedroom, their bodies pressed against one another as they laid on Jordan’s bed. Well, actually it felt like I was kissing her. I suddenly felt disoriented and tired. I didn’t want to see this. I tried pulling out, but it was like someone had me blocked. I couldn’t get out. Damn it all!
Jordan pulled away and smirked. “Not bad, huh?”
“You’re a good kisser.” she said, breathlessly.
“Well, that’s nice to know. It’s embarrassing, but it’s been a while since I’ve kissed anyone.”
”That’s okay,” Alicia said. “You’re not the only one.”
They were both lying on their sides as they gazed at one another. I felt like I was invading in on a very private moment. That’s because you are, my subconscious hissed. I frowned. God, I have got to find a way out of Jordan’s head. He’ll never forgive me if he finds out that I eavesdropped on this perfect moment of theirs. I tried struggling back into my head, but it was a failed attempt. Oh, well. I might as well give up. I’m not leaving the depths of his mind anytime soon.
“So how was your day?” Alicia asked. I had to remind myself that she was talking to Jordan and not me.
“It was okay,” he seemed to frown as he thought about me in my crying state from earlier. In his mind I looked so broken and scared. I cringed at the sight of me in his memory. My face was ghostly pale and blotchy from all the crying and my hair looked like a mess! Dang. I look gross. I didn’t like seeing me like that. I never would have considered myself a weak person but that’s exactly what I looked like. And you’re supposed to be a hero, my subconscious scoffed. If only I could smack her.
“What’s wrong?” Alicia asked. She seemed concerned.
“It’s Spencer. She’s not doing very well.”
“What do mean?”
Jordan sat up then. Alicia followed his example. “She feels very defenseless. I think the thought of him coming after her is really starting to take its toll.” Which is a nice way to say I’m going insane. Thank you, Jordan.
“Do you really believe that he is after her?” she asked, through tight, white lips.
“I don’t know.” Jordan said. “I do believe someone is trying to hurt her, though.”
“Like who? Spencer is a sweetheart. Why would anyone want to hurt her?” I could feel my lips form into smile at her words. I really do like Alicia. I approve one-hundred percent.
Jordan shrugged. “Again, I don’t know. But there’s something about Torchwood—“
Alicia cut him off, a scowl on her. “Jordan, it’s not Alex. Why do you dislike him so much?” She eyed him suspiciously. “Are you jealous of him and Spencer’s relationship?”
“What? No!” Alicia still looked unconvinced. “I only see Spencer as a friend. That’s all. And it’s the same way with her. I just don’t want to see her get hurt by that creep.”
“I don’t think he’ll hurt her, Jordan. I think you’re overreacting.”
“Okay,” he said. “He might not hurt her physically, but who’s to say he won’t break her heart. I mean, he is a guy. He might just want one thing from her and once he gets it—“
“Alex is not that type of guy,” Alicia said. Jordan shook his head, his eyes dubious. “He’s not. He’s an asshole, I know, but he also cares for Spencer very much.” My heart beat started picking up at her words.
”And how do you know this?” Jordan demanded. “I mean, I wasn’t aware that you were close to Torchwood.”
“I’m not. I just watch people. Trust me, when Spencer and Alex are in the same room, all he can do is look at her.”
“And all Spencer can do is look at him,” Jordan murmured. He didn’t sound pleased about it. “I still don’t like it.” I rolled my eyes. What a surprise.
“Well tough,” Alicia snapped. Jordan eyes widened at her sharp tone. “She is you’re N’Sync, not your sister. Let her make her own choices. I’m sure she approves of our relationship.” I wasn’t aware that they had formed a relationship. Well, at least not a serious one. Then again, it would explain the kissing.
“Well,” Jordan said, sheepishly. “I haven’t exactly told her about us making it official yet.”
“What?” Alicia growled.
“I just haven’t found the right time – what with school being hectic and all. But I promise,” he held his hands up in defense. “I’ll tell her.”
“Well, you better.” Alicia said. The warning was evident in her voice. “I told Jennifer. You need to tell Spencer tomorrow.” Oh, he won’t need too. I plan on letting him know that I know first thing.
“Okay,” Jordan sighed. He didn’t look to thrilled by the idea. In fact, he looked frightened. Probably worried that I’ll bite his head off. “Tomorrow.”
The next day as I walked with Jordan, Morgan, and Scarlett to Magic and Spells, I noticed that in the hallways, Christmas lights were strewn all over the corridors and on classroom doors. Everyone was getting ready for Christmas. I repressed a sigh. To be honest, I wasn’t exactly feeling the holiday spirit. I felt bad that I had spied on Alicia and Jordan last night and I was having a hard time bringing up the subject. I realized when I woke up this morning that I was no longer mad at Jordan for keeping his relationship with Alicia a secret, for he was right. School was crazy right now and I’m always busy with homework, while also worrying about who’s trying to kill me. There really was no way for him to bring up the subject.
Just as we made it to Ms. Hardwick’s door, I pulled Jordan aside. Morgan and Scarlett came to a halt, eyeing me in puzzlement. “I need to talk to Jordan alone.”
“Oh, okay,” Scarlett said. Morgan looked like he was about to protest, but Scarlett grabbed his wrist and dragged him into the classroom. He didn’t look very happy about it.
“What wrong?” Jordan asked.
I bit my lip, feeling nervous. I hope he doesn’t get mad. After all, it wasn’t really my fault. He basically dragged me into their “conversation.” He was just unaware of my presence. “I was in your head last night. I saw you and Alicia, um, kissing and I also heard your conversation afterwards,” Jordan’s angry expression had me hurrying through my explanation. “B-but I want you to know that I didn’t mean too. You kind of dragged me into your head and I tried getting out but it was a lot of work. It’s like you had me pinned in place and I couldn’t move. Please, don’t be angry. I’m sorry.”
Jordan’s face, to my relieve, softened at my apology. “So you heard everything. Even about how Alicia and I—
Now it was Jordan’s turn to look nervous. “You’re not mad that I didn’t tell you about Alicia and me right away, are you?”
“I was last night, but this morning it kind of faded. I know why you didn’t tell me. It’s kind of hard when we don’t exactly have time to hang out with each other.”
“That's true,” he agreed. “But I’m still sorry.”
“It’s okay. The worst part was feeling like I was kissing, Alicia.” I shuddered. “But it definitely took my mind of some things so…thanks.” I added lamely.
“No problem,” Jordan said. He smiled teasingly. “I’m glad you enjoyed the show.”
“I never said that.”
Jordan laughed as we made our way into class. To our luck, class hadn’t started. Ms. Hardwick was still at her desk, grading papers as Jordan and I took our assigned seats. I smiled as I saw Jordan and Alicia holding hands under their table, while also looking at each other with goo goo eyes. I heard someone gag at the front of the room and realized it was Morgan. Jordan must have heard him too because he glared in his direction. I chuckled and turned to look at the empty seat next to mine. I was surprised to see Alex hadn’t shown up for class yet. Was he sick? Had he gotten in trouble? No. He must be running late or something because I saw him in all the other classes I have with him. Just as the bell rang, Alex materialized through the door. As soon as he saw me, a half smile appeared on his gorgeous face.
“Nice timing,” I said as Alex took his seat next to mine. “What were you doing? You were almost late.”
“Mr. Hans wanted to talk to me after class. It was about some assignment that I forgot to turn in Wednesday.”
“Did you turn it in?”
“Yeah, but since it was due Wednesday I got points taken off. Oh, well.”
I giggled at his carelessness. It’s was so cute. “Why didn’t you turn it in Wednesday? Did you not have it with you or did you not finish it?”
“It was completed. I was just off in lala land when he asked us to turn it in.”
“Ah. Lala land. You got to love it there.”
“It’s a nice place.” Alex agreed. He said it so casually. It was so cute.
Okay, so I think everything about him is cute. So sue me.
After dinner, I decided to go up to my room and take a long, hot soothing shower. Today had been rough and I just wanted to find some way to relax for the rest of the evening. I put my password into the keypad and heard the audible click as my door unlocked. I closed my door and threw my backpack on my bed – in a hurry to get to my bathroom.
I shucked off my clothes and turned the nozzle labeled hot and stepped into the scalding water. It felt wonderful on my tender muscles. Today, Jordan had kicked my ass during training and somehow I had landed on my shoulder. It hurt every time I moved it a certain way. I picked up the lavender soap and used it to scrub all the dirt and sweat off my body. It felt tender on my sensitive skin. It was an indistinct sort of sound, but I could have sworn I heard something like the door opening. I shrugged it off and started washing my hair. It was looking kind of gross after today’s training.
When I finally felt relaxed and squeaky clean, I turned the nozzle off and pulled the shower curtain aside. Suddenly I heard a scream. It wasn’t until a few seconds went by that I realized it had been me. The word Die was written in scarlet red on my bathroom mirror. I couldn’t move. I was completely paralyzed. Who got into my bathroom? Or more importantly who had access to my bedroom? No one knows my password. Not even Jordan. I crumbled in the bathtub as I continued to stare at the three letters on my mirror: Die. Tears came unbidden to my eyes. What am I going to do?
Then suddenly a thought occurred to me. What if that person is still here – in my closet or hanging around in my bedroom? Am I even safe in the confines of my own room? I rolled my eyes. If they can get into my room it just goes to show that I’m not safe anywhere. Trying to gather all my strength, I used my shower curtain to pull myself up and quickly got dressed. My Sais – thank God – were still on the counter by the sink. I grabbed them, and carefully opened the door to peek inside my room and make sure no one was in there, waiting to ambush or kidnap me. When the coast was clear, I rushed to my door and swung it open. I heard the door slam shut behind me once I was running down the corridor. I was rushing downstairs to find someone that could help me. I didn’t want to bother Jordan – he was probably with Alicia anyways – so I decided on the next closest person I could rely on. I prayed to God that he was in his room and not up on the roof as I ran down the fire corridor. I saw Scarlett’s door, but I knew she wasn’t there. The only time she’s in her room is when she’s going to bed.
I eventually found Alex’s door, which was at the end of the corridor and started beating my fists against it repeatedly, causing the door to shake and tremble at the impact. Please let him be here. I prayed. Please let him be here.
After the tenth knock, the door finally opened, revealing a very annoyed Alexander. “What. Are. You. Doing?”
I was trembling from head to toe. Not from Alex’s frosty gaze, but from the fact that someone had just ruined my one and only safe haven. “Someone…was in my bathroom…while I took a shower.”
Alex blanched. “What?”
“I don’t know who it was. I didn’t see anything. The only thing I heard was the door opening, but I thought I imagined it. Then, when I was just about to get dressed there it was on my bathroom mirror.”
Alex closed the door behind himself and put his hands on my shoulders. Just the touch of his hands seemed to calm my racing heart. He eyed me worriedly. “What was on your mirror?” He grimaced. “Please, tell me it wasn’t an animal.”
I shook my head. I felt tears as they slid down my face. “It wasn’t an animal. It was just one word, written in blood, I think.”
“What was the word, princess?”
I took a deep breath before answering. “Die.” The word sounded ominous to me. I couldn’t help but tremble in fear.
“Do you mind showing me?” He seemed just as unsettled as I felt.
I didn’t reply. I just grabbed his wrist and dragged him back to my room.
It wasn’t even a minute later that we arrived back to my door and I was keying in the password. When I heard it unlocked, I threw my door open and immediately went straight to my bathroom. When I opened the door, I flicked on the light, and saw that the word Die was gone – like it had never been there in the first place.
“What?” I gasped.
Alex was right behind me as he too took in the clean mirror above my sink.
“But it was here,” I said. “I saw it!” I dragged my hands through my wet hair in exasperation.
Alex pulled out both his pistols and started walking slowly towards my closet, looking like a predator hunting for its prey. I clamped both my hands over my mouth to keep from screaming as I followed close behind him. Alex twisted the doorknob and then threw the door open, his pistols aimed at whatever was hidden behind the door.
Fortunately, it was empty, except for my clothes and shoes. We breathed a sigh of relieve. I hadn’t realized that I had been holding my breath this entire time. Alex closed my closet door.
He looked at me in concern. “Are you alright?”
“No.” I said. I looked back at my mirror. All I could think of was blood every time I looked at it. “It was there. I know it was.”
Alex didn’t reply. He was putting his pistols away, trying to avoid looking at me, I guess. I had to admit that the guns fit him. When he had them strapped to his hips, he finally looked back at me, his face unreadable.
“I believe you. I know you wouldn’t make something up like that. Hell, especially after all that’s been going on.”
“It’s no problem.”
Suddenly the thought of him leaving me in this room became unbearable. I didn’t want to be alone. “Do you…mind…staying. I’m scared and I don’t want to be alone.”
“Sure.” he said.
I held the door open for him, a tantalizing smile forming on my lips. “Ladies first.”
Alex scoffed, but didn’t reply as he exited my bathroom. I was just about to turn off the light when I remembered something. In my hasty retreat, I vaguely remember leaving the bathroom light on. It was off when Alex and I returned. A cold chill seemed to slither down my spine. Who is doing this? And why? I scanned my bathroom one more time, looking for any kind of clue that might give me some sort of answer. When I didn’t find any, I shut off the light and closed the door.
I decided to wait until lunch to tell my friends about what happened last night. I was still a bit shaken up, but I tried to remain calm for my friends benefit. I wondered if Jordan knew already. With the kind of emotions I was feeling last night, I wouldn’t be surprised if I had dragged him into my head. Then he would have rushed to your side if he thought you were in trouble, my subconscious said. That’s true too. Unless he saw me with Alex. I cringed inwardly. No doubt if Jordan did see, he’s more than likely going to give me another Alex-is-dangerous speech.
When the bell rang and Mr. Xavier released us from class, (the bell doesn’t dismiss you – he does) Jordan, Morgan, Gabby, and I went straight to lunch and got in line. To my relieve, it was short, with only five people in front of us, most of them third year students. They seemed oblivious to our presence as they chatted with their friends about trivial things like the academy’s current gossip, and who was dating who. I sighed, feeling bored. It’s always the same thing around here.
When we had our trays, we started heading towards our usual table, which was in the center of the cafeteria, around all the different groups of students, like the nerds, rebels, and the popular, rich kids. This dimension really was no different than the Powerless world. As we neared our table, I noted that Scarlett and Mia were already seated there along with Mr. Grey. I was surprised to see him sitting at our table. I kept a poker face the whole time as we took our seats. I listened as Mr. Grey greeted his two nephews, including Gabrielle, who blushed and murmured a greeting in return. Huh. I wonder what that’s about. Mr. Grey turned his friendly gaze towards me, a kind smile on his face.
“Good afternoon, Spencer.”
“Hello, Mr. Grey.”
Jordan looked quizzically at his uncle. “Why are you sitting with us? I thought you had better things to do then hang out with immature teenagers.”
“I have nothing better to do,” He mumbled, avoiding everyone’s eyes as he ate his lunch. He looked kind of uncomfortable as we all stared at him
“Oh, I see,” Morgan said, wryly. “You just didn’t want to knock into Ms. Foster because she has that huge crush on you.”
Mr. Grey didn’t reply. He just continued eating his lunch as if Morgan hadn’t spoken.
I found myself not really hungry as I played with my food. I was having a hard time finding my voice. I needed to tell them about yesterday, but every time I would find the words to say I just couldn’t bring myself to speak them. What if they overreact? What if Mr. Grey – being a teacher – tells Headmaster Death what happened? I don’t know if I’m ready to involve him yet.
Someone nudged my arm. It was Jordan as he looked at me in puzzlement. “What’s up with you?” he asked. “You haven’t spoken all day.” He eyed my untouched food and frowned. “Are you ever going to bring up what happened last night?”
I snapped my eyes shut. So he did know. But why didn’t he say anything earlier? Not once did Jordan hint that he knew what happened last night. You would think he would have been worried and demanding answers. In fact, I vaguely remember him frowning every time he looked at me today. I opened them and saw all my friends staring me with inquiring eyes. I took a deep breath and sighed. Here it goes.
I told them everything I told Alex as they sat immobilized in their seats, listening to my tale of horror. The only thing I left out was Alex’s involvement. Jordan isn’t the only one who thinks Alex is a lunatic. None of them would have approved. When I was finished, everyone remained silent, not really sure what to say. Everyone, including Jordan, looked disconcerted.
Finally Mr. Grey spoke, “So you really don’t know who did it?”
“No. I was…distracted.” I tend to become oblivious to everything around me when I shower. Though I wasn’t going to tell him that.
“Why didn’t you come get me?” Jordan demanded. “I could have protected you!”
I was confused. “I thought you knew.”
“I know about the other thing that happened last night. But I didn’t know about that!”
I blanched at his words. He knew about Alex staying in my room last night. Scarlett looked back and forth between us, her face curious.
“What other thing happened last night?”
“It’s nothing,” I replied, deadpan. Scarlett frowned, unconvinced. “It’s confidential. Something only between Jordan and me.” I hope he heard the warning in my voice.
“Alright,” Jordan said. Obviously he was smart and picked up on it. He eyed me sternly. “Later.”
I wanted to grimace. That was one conversation I was not looking forward to.
“Don’t you think you need to talk to the Headmaster?” Gabrielle asked.
I groaned. “I don’t think I’m ready to involve anyone yet. It will get all over the school and then I’ll be the talk of the town again.”
“But you really need to talk to someone, Spencer.” Mr. Grey said. “You need someone to protect you.”
“I’ve got my N’Sync,” I said. Jordan grinned at that. “And besides I’m talking to you guys about it.”
“And that is good, but Jordan is still a Reaper in training and you need to talk to someone who is more of a professional in situations like these. I mean, we don’t know who or what we might be dealing with. It would be best to report this incident. Maybe we can finally get the Board of Education to set up wards around the school.”
“I’m sorry,” Morgan said, exasperated. “But if they didn’t take Spencer’s word last time, what makes you think they’ll believe her again?”
“I don’t know,” Mr. Grey said. “But we got to do something.”
“Well, I think that decision is up to Spencer,” Mia said. Her words rendered everyone speechless. “She’s thirteen. Yes, in an adult’s mind she is still a child, but I think others should respect her wishes – even if they sound insane.”
I smiled at her.
“Mia’s right,” Scarlett said. “We’re her friends. If she’s not ready for the Headmaster to know of these current events then we should accept it without any questions.”
It took a lot of convincing, but in the end everyone succumbed and agreed to keep what happened last night a secret. Mr. Grey was still unsure, but promised not to say anything to anyone, especially the Headmaster. I didn’t have to worry about Alex saying anything to anyone. I knew I could count on him to keep my secret.
All day as we went from class to class, I was dreading that conversation with Jordan. I kept telling myself that I had done nothing wrong. I was scared last night and I didn’t want to sleep in my room alone. When Mr. Grey had dismissed us from training, I knew that it was only a matter of time before he started asking questions.
As we were walking back to our dorm, I felt as he grabbed my wrist, making me to come to halt.
“What?” I asked.
He was frowning, which wasn’t a good sign. “It’s later.”
“Jordan,” I groaned. “Do we have to do this now?”
“Yep,” He answered. I whined as he dragged me to the nearest picnic table. He released my wrist and patted the bench as he took a seat. ”Sit down, Spencer.”
“When did you get so bossy?” I asked as I plopped down beside him. The whole picnic table trembled, making me wonder if I was fat. I peeked down at my flat stomach. It must be the wood.
“Start talking.” he demanded.
I wanted to roll my eyes at him, but I stopped myself. The last thing I want is for us to fight. “What do you want to know?”
“I want to know why you let that creep stay in your room last night.”
“Alex is not a creep, Jordan! And the reason he stayed with me was because I was scared. There. Now you have the whole story.”
“Where did he sleep?”
I had this sudden urge to hit him. I sighed in exasperation. “Why does it matter? He didn’t rape me!”
“Because I just want to know.”
I was on the verge of pulling my hair out. I just didn’t understand why it mattered so much. “He slept on the floor.” Jordan did double take at my words. Clearly, he did not expect that response. “You happy now.”
“Wait,” he said, befuddled. “He didn’t sleep in the bed with you?”
“Nope,” I said. I was enjoying his startled reaction more than I should have. “Now if you are done with the inquisitions for the evening may I please go back to my room so I can get some homework done?”
Jordan nodded mutely.
Without another word, I grabbed my backpack and headed straight back to the dorm, feeling angry and more alone than ever.