Shadow Crawlers. Part 31

Everything was in a better state than Brett had expected, he had thought it would be decaying ruins, but it was all easily repairable. Some walls had cracks, but most were still standing, it was mostly dusty, needed a good airing out. Of course the people he had left here had gone and died on him, but there was no changing that now. He’d just have to get new ones. That wouldn’t be a problem. As he walked through the rooms he could feel the place gain a new vitality, it was already starting to repair itself, of course he would change the lay out, update the decor but for now it would do as his sanctum. His physical body wasn’t there, but that didn’t matter. He wasn’t in either world fully, he could interact with things here, but his body in the otherworld would be safe. Nothing cuold penetrate it, so there was no danger of attack.He could only stay here for short periods when one of the others wanted to battle. It was designed as a space for them to communicate no matter where they were, but quickly it became their own personal refuges. Brett knew of the other places, but you did not enter unless given an explicit invitation, doing otherwise could be quite unpleasant.

He wandered through the building, feeling waves of nostalgia. They had so many meetings here, so many secrets were shared and created. This was their special place, their world. He expected the other to want a meeting, perhaps declare their intentions as to what they were going to do, but then it might not either. It liked to be quiet, subtle. No doubt it would take out the humans first, hoping that they were masters or slaves and it would weaken everyone. It would be sad, but if it happened, it happened. He wasn’t in danger, only Rose and Ed would be caught out that way. Simon was the safest of them all, he knew who his master was and could protect the body constantly. he himself was at a disadvantage, he knew his master was out there, but he didn’t know where or why he hadn’t appeared yet. A vague humanoid shape scurried past holding a tray, Brett smiled, good they were returning too.They’d get a kick start on repairs. He moved from the front rooms towards the back, his own personal chambers. Once he was finished, he decided he’d tone it down a little, he was older now, more mature. They all had places like this, Rose’s rooms were made of fire, Simons were made of ice. His, his were composed of screaming humans, of course they were all muted. They were compressed into walls their faces elongated and stretched, twisted in pain, slowly moving as they screamed. It had always seemed like a good design, a way to seperate himself from the humans who always had such plain, boring things. He enjoyed that his rooms went from normal to twisted horror very subtly, it was hard to tell where the wall ended and the bodies began. Not like the others, all whirling fire and glittering ice the moment you stepped through.

“are you sure it’ll be in there?”
“Yes.”
“But how? Wouldn’t it just come to the front door or something?”
“I don’t know, all I know is what I was told when I was younger.”
They stood around the door to the vault, looking at it.
“Right, will we get started now?”
Rose approached the door and started to unseal it again. Simon and Brett stepped towards it to move it when she was done. The two girls waited expectantly, looking into the dark hole. After a moment, a middle aged man stepped out. He was tall, but smaller than either of them expected. They both thought of rippling muscles and youthful good looks.
“you called for me?”
“Yes, I was told you’d be a friend to the family. We need you’re help.”
“Why should I help you?”
“The bond of friendship and family.”
“That means nothing to me.”
‘It is not just our enemy, it is your as well.”
The man paused, then nodded
“I will listen to what you have to say.”
“We need protection, we need help. One of your kind is killing us and there is nothing we can do.”
The man sighed, “I expected this to occur long ago. I will help you, but once you are safe, I will do no more. I am Edward, you may call me Ed if you wish.
Amy and Grady looked at one another, trying not to giggle.
Edward seemed to deflate slightly and slouch down, he walked past them all and left the room. “Food?”
The followed after, Rose directing him to the kitchen.

In the kitchen, Edward ate methodically while Rose talked. It seemed to the others that he had already dismissed her, he interrupted occasionally to ask for more food. When Rose finished, he shrugged, and continued to eat.
“Why are you called Edward?”
“It’s the name I was given.”
“By who?”
“My creators.”
“Do you all have regular names like that?”
“I suppose. We try to blend in with the human world for the most part. We keep ourselves to ourselves, but we still need electricity and homes.”
“You own a home? An actual house?”
“Not quite.”
“Do you know which one of you is trying to kill us all?”
He glanced at Brett, “It could be any of a number really. some didn’t agree with what Margaret was doing. We felt it was dangerous, but we didn’t think she could breed with a human. We were told such a thing would be impossible. Even after the children were born, their powers were not a danger to us, so we saw no harm, we figured other humans would see them as a threat and dispose of them long before they would be able to attack us with any degree of success. Some didn’t agree. They held grudges against Margaret. Most of us do tend to be angry over small slights. Not myself though. I don’t pay much attention to that stuff. I just want to live my life. Margaret was always kind to me though. We were friends of a sort. I’l have repaid any debts by doing this. I don’t like owing people things. It’s a…quirk of our kind.” He took a long drink from a mug of tea. “I’ll do what I can but don’t hold your breath. If it’s who I think it is, there may be nothing I can do. I might call in some back up if I need to though. I know some others who will probably help.”

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About Alan James Keogh

I am a 26 year old writer who somehow tricked U.C.D. into giving me not only a degree in English and Classical studies, but an Hons Masters in Creative Writing too. Visit my blog where I post short stories twice a week (Monday and Wednesday) and an installment of a serialised novel on Fridays. I did consider writing this in the third person, as though it was written by someone else, but Alan is not comfortable writing in the third person as it seems kinda creepy and unbalanced so Alan decided it was probably best to write in the first person. He hopes it went well for him.
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One Response to Shadow Crawlers. Part 31

  1. Pingback: Shadow Crawlers. Part 32 | Alan James Keogh

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