Under the Red Moon

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[In a series of unfortunate events, Amelia and Rafael are pushed into each other's lives, both unable to predict the outcome that is to come from their meeting.] From the moment she stared into his eyes, she felt all sorts of emotions but never, in any moment, did she feel fear. From the moment he stared into her eyes, he felt the barrier he took so long to build begin to crumble.

Romance / Thriller
Age Rating:

First Encounter

Amelia's POV:

"That will be $4.36," I tell the man in front of the register. After giving him his change, I turn to Stacy, "Is it just me, or does this shift feel like it's never-ending?". She smiles at me, "Hang in there Amme". I give her a look of disgust. She laughs and continues to restock the aisles. I checked my phone, the time read 9:15 pm. I decided to review my notes and start on my English assignment while I wait for the shift to end. I must have fallen asleep because I am awakened by a hand shaking my shoulder.

"I just got a call from my mom and it seems Matthew's fever has gotten worse. I think I need to take him to the hospital". The urgency in Stacy's voice shakes the sleep from my eyes. I look at my phone, it reads 9:46 pm. "You should go, I'll close up here. It's almost ten anyway". "Are you sure?" she tells me with a look of concern. "Of course, besides, I owe you for covering for me last week," I reassure her. "Thank you, you're a lifesaver, call me when you get home, okay?" I nod my head, and she gives me the keys to look up the store. Minutes later, I start to tidy up and close up the store. Given it's early October, the weather has become rather chilly, and there's an ominous feel as one walks on the street. I begin heading to the bus stop that takes me home. Once on the bus, I feel my eyes heavy with sleep. I try to stay awake by bringing my face to the window and stare up into the sky. The sky is gloomy. I can barely see any stars; however, the moon is fully visible and I notice its odd red shade.

[30 minutes later...]

I hear a honk, and I immediately open my eyes. It takes my eyes time to adjust to my surroundings. I'm on the bus. It is dark out. And I'm the only person on. The bus driver turns to me "Oh, I'm sorry, didn't mean to wake you there," he says mockingly. "Ummm...what stop is this?" I ask him. He takes his time thinking before answering me, "The last stop, I suppose". He seems to be annoyed with me, and I want to remind him that he could have woken me up instead of driving me to who knows where. I try to convince him to drop me off at my stop, but there's clearly no point in negotiating with him. I hop off the bus and begin walking in the direction of my stop. I am not sure if there will be another bus there, but I am not left with many options. As I pull my phone out, hoping to call a taxi, even though I have no money to pay for it, I see the screen is black, and it won't turn on, perfect! After much contemplating, I decided to continue to walk, trying to stay alert of my surroundings.

I have been walking for about 20 minutes when I begin feeling someone's presence behind me. I start to freak out and fasten my pace. I turn a corner, hoping that maybe I am just overthinking this, and I am not being followed. I finally have the nerve to look back and see nothing there. I stop walking and begin to take in big breathes. As my breathing returns to normal, I begin to make out a voice coming from the alleyway. I make my way closer to the alleyway, which I suppose wasn't the best idea, yet my curiosity is too much to handle.

I can make out a man's voice, and from the way, he's talking I assume someone else is with him, but I don't hear another voice. "Did you really think the boss wouldn't find out? What were you going to do once you got the money huh? You're lucky he didn't have you killed right then and there you dumb bastard". I hear a grunt followed by a cynical laugh. I try peering into the dark alleyway and make out a large figure hovering over another figure. I can only make out the outlines, but I can definitely hear their conversation better now. "I knew from the moment I laid my eyes on you, you would bring us trouble," says the large man. He kicks at whoever is at his feet again causing me to wince.

I realize that whatever I may be witnessing is not for me and decide to make my way out of the alleyway. As I get one last glance, an arm is wrapped around my waist while another covers my mouth. I am being picked up and dragged into the alleyway. I try prying myself, kicking aimlessly, and try screaming, but nothing seems to work. I hear the man from earlier speak, "What do you got there Hank?". "I found her eavesdropping on your little conversation and figured she might want to hear a little better," the man who grabbed replies. The other man comes closer as I keep struggling to break free, "Didn't your parents teach you it's bad manners to eavesdrop little girl?"

I am tossed into the corner, and that's when I see the other person that the man was talking to. Although I still can't see his face completely because he is wearing a mask, I can tell he is young. and he is definitely injured. My suspicions are confirmed when I see a gash on his lower abdomen and a pool of blood next to him. "Since I found her first, I call dibs," Hank, that's the name the other man called him, says. " I suppose it's only fair but don't go crazy this time, you know I hate leftovers".

Hank pulls me from my arm as I try looking around for some sort of weapon. He pushed me up against the wall and begins pressing himself onto me. I go rigid and I am unable to speak. My mind goes blank. Hank notices this, and in some sick delusion he says, "For a second there I thought you were going to put up a fight". At that moment he loses grip, and I kick him in the groin. I try running away but the other man yanks me to the ground, and this time I know I won't be able to escape.

I look back to the man on the ground, he seems completely dead to the world. Hank seems to have recovered, and I can see the malice in his face as he approaches me. "I was planning on being gentle with you. but after your little stunt back there, I am going to make sure to go slow and make things extremely painful for you sweetheart".

Just as he is about to grab me, I hear a scream and then a 'snap'. I look to my right and see the body of the large man on the ground, his head fully twisted. He is dead. The man who was on the ground, who I sure thought was dead, is standing there, alive. He's tall, over six feet, and from the way the fabric of his clothes grips his body, he is most definitely bulked up. A minute ago he seemed so helpless and weak, but he's nothing compared to the man in front of me right now.

Hank's face turns pale. His face lost of emotions. The man walks to him, and he stops directly in front of him. " What did you just say," he tells Hank. The voice of the man is deep and alluring and filled with rage. "I asked you a question did I not? Didn't your parents teach you it's bad manners to not answer someone when they have asked you a question?" He definitely has an accent. Spanish?

Hank stays silent, his eyes wide, never blinking. He is looking straight into the man's eyes. The man has put himself in between me and Hank, and therefore, I can't see his face. "Well, perhaps this will bring back your memory I suppose". He punches Hank right in the face, and I swear I heard the sound of a broken nose. Hank stumbles back and lands on the ground, his eyes still wide and unblinking. Finally, he speaks up, "How did...you were bleeding...John stabbed you...you're supposed to be dead...". The man laughs, "Did you really think that was all it would take to kill me?" He walks closer to Hank. He kicks him in the stomach and then picks him up and throws him on top of the dead body of his partner, "Care to join him, Hank?"

Hank is coughing now, blood pouring from all parts of him. A part of me wants to tell the man to stop. He'll end up killing him. I don't get to finish my thoughts as a scream followed by a blow gets my attention. Hank is trying to speak, but nothing comes out all he can do is stare into the eyes of his attacker. "I am going to go slow and make things extremely painful for you sweetheart, those were your words if I recall correctly, am I right?". In a moment's flash, the man brings his hands to Hank's neck, and just like his friend, his lifeless body hits the ground...his head completely twisted.

The man turns to me and for the first time I see him. I see the silver wavy hair that frames his pale face. I see his furrowed eyebrows. I see his sharp nose. But...most importantly...I see his eyes. At first, I think it must be the light of the red moon reflecting in his eyes that makes his eyes red, but as he tilts his head, I see that it's not the moon at all. His eyes are red. A red so intense yet so calming. The longer I stare into his eyes, the calmer I begin to feel. It makes no sense, I should be terrified after witnessing him kill two men with his bare hands...but I am not. I try to take my eyes off him, but I just can't look away...I don't want to look away. He comes closer to me and he crouches down to me. He smells like leather and a light hint of cologne. Odd, but I'm not surprised not after today's events. I feel his breath on my neck causing my insides to melt. He comes closer, I feel his nose on my neck, it tickles."RUN". I turn my head to him, his face millimeters from mine. "Forget about everything you saw today...You need to get out of here...NOW!".

Author's Note: The formatting is somewhat odd in the beginning chapters; however, it gets better as the story progresses. Please comment to let me know about anything that will help make this story better.

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