As the Awakened fled, Amethyst could only feel a sick sense of satisfaction. She had them so... wrapped around her finger it was almost horrifying
. Horrifying that they were willing to fight and die for a dirty traitor, Amethyst squeezed her dagger so tightly that it almost drew blood. She shook her head as the rest of the Watchers took her side, even Theresa and Cindy had taken her side. She spoke in their native tongue.
"... We'll have to take a more drastic measure now."
Storm's picking up.
Britney thought to herself as the group marched through the snow back towards Grand Ridge. She was wondering if even the Corrupted would be capable of penetrating this thick storm. It was unimportant as the group finally made it through the lobby of Grand Ridge and... it was destroyed. Claw marks were everywhere, there was blood, and glass was everywhere. She took a look around and saw Justin and the rest of the group has a seat on what was left of the lunch benches.
"Guys!" Britney said with a smile, happy that they survived... as she was already prepared for the worst the second they parted ways. "You made it, what happened here?"
"We got the map," Justin said as he sat with his hands together in front of him. The map sat on the table that was still together as the group looked at it. "We got attacked by some kinda monsters... but then this thing came up calling himself the Hound-"
" Britney's voice boomed as her adrenaline spiked for a moment upon hearing his name. "I mean... the Hound? That means..." She trailed off as she tried to find the right words. "... Somebody was marked for death." She flatly said.
"Yeah, Jordan..." Kimberly said with a frown.
Britney had an idea of what Jordan was going through and figured that might have something to do with it. She just sighed, before she said, "Well, the Hound has what he wants, so he should leave us alone." She just flatly says.
"You sound real
remorseful..." Justin shook his head, "We also lost Charlie, Madeline, and Cyrus in the attack."
"To be honest with you," Britney said with a sigh, "We lost so many... I can't bring myself to be sad anymore. Because..."
"Because...?" Justin said.... We're going to be losing a lot more by the time this is over.
Britney's mouth moved but she stopped herself from going forward just if she upsets Justin further. "We can cry all we want to when we make their deaths mean something... um..." She trailed off as she asked.
"... Were they killed by the Glutton or the monsters?"
"The monsters, the Glutton didn't come anywhere near us."
"That means... did any of you take their abstractions?" Britney asked.
"I have Jordan's," Kimberly said.
"Well, I have to tell you all how to use them, right?" Britney said with a raised eyebrow. "It's simple... you'll start to experience their memories as we did with John Reid, but to use them you have to channel and understand their emotions. You might not be able to use it perfectly at first, but it's something."
"But..." Justin said as he eyed the object the group brought back, then he flicked a finger towards the map. "You didn't come back empty-handed did you."
"We got this," Britney said as she placed the weird glass object over the map... then had to rotate it because it was off. When it was perfectly aligned it showed tunnels and pathways that weren't obvious before and Britney almost sighed in relief that they got this before they got the map. Because they would have gotten lost almost instantly. However there was something that stood out to Britney... in the center of the mountain at the base there was a huge orb - revealed by the glass screen.
"That..." Lynette said as a finger drifted towards it.
"That's obviously where he
is," Justin said. "... Where we need to go."
"Okay, we go there and then what?" Kimberly said with a shrug. "I know we went through the effort of getting the map - losing like four of our own in the process - but what's the plan? It's obvious none of us have the power to stop the Glutton."
"The Child will help us."
"Well... I'm not super keen on trusting the Child blindly anymore." Kimberly said and Justin shook his head as he realized something.
"Don't tell me you're-" He cut himself off as he said. "What I'm trying to say here is; do we have any other options right now?" He let the words hang in the air.
"We can go around and take out as many of its followers as possible," Justin started, "But they're not the problem? If we head in there, at worst all we'd leave with some idea about what to do."
"But more of us are gonna die." They bickered and bickered.
Sharon was oddly quiet during the whole thing, her mind lingered on a few words spoken by Amethyst. Before she just randomly suggested, "What if we destroy the mountain?"
"What?" Justin said.
"Maybe if we destroy the mountain it'd take the Glutton down with it," Sharon gestured towards Lynette. "Her power, she can do it!"
"The thing is, Sharon, and you should know this," Britney said, "The seals are the only thing keeping the Glutton "in", and if it gets out... there ain't nothing we can to do to stop it. As the Child said, we have to repair the seals and then the Glutton will go dormant again." She explained before she glanced over at Penny.
"And I know you have your reservations about Glint making the Glutton our problem - but far as I can tell; we're the only ones around who can solve it." She shrugged. "We'll go there first thing in the morning, but in the meantime, everyone rests up."
"I have an idea," Lynette said, "How about we make as many copies of the map as we can just in case the inevitable happens?"
"Yeah, that's a great idea."
"I'll get to work immediately," Lynette said.
"Everyone else, let's head to sleep..." Britney said as the group went their separate ways. Fortunately, not all of the academy was destroyed, and they still had functioning beds. There was a watch kept up, but for some reason, they felt something guarding them. Something dark but friendly, and not even the most insane corrupted came close to them as they slept.
They felt strange ease they allowed even the lookouts keep rest.
It was Justin's turn to take watch, as he elected. Everyone gets one hour watch before they pass the metaphorical torch. The torch in this instance was a flashlight-lantern hybrid that Farmer Hill has hundreds of... if only he knew getting power knocked out was a common occurrence here. He was on the third floor of Grand Ridge looking out onto the pitch-black streets of Farmer Hill... he couldn't see a thing, but he felt safe for some reason.
Somebody was watching over them.
If only he knew who... he was still pissed off at the Hound for killing two of their friends and then running away, but the emotion that trumped that rage. Curiosity. If he was the so-called agent of death, then he had the answers that he needs. His grandmother's death should be a simple question for the Hound, even if he has to fight the-... Do you want the truth, boy?
The Hound's voice crept into his head and even then he could feel the apathetic aura that abomination gives off. He froze in shock - unaware that somebody crept out of their room. Justin looked around and saw no Hound, but wondered if he was just going crazy! However, when he looked out the window he saw the Hound, a weird light appearing out of nowhere and giving him some kind of contrast. He sat on the streets, and Justin realized he mustn't be afraid. He was about to go out and yell at the thing but the beast got up and took one step...
... and appeared directly in front of Justin. The black fog appeared and wrapped him to prevent him from yelling.
"Do not be alarmed, Justin Liao," The Hound said, "I mean no harm. I merely want... to speak with you."
The fog faded and Justin felt his emotions return as the Hound laid down. "... Still never going to get used to that."
"There is great anguish going on inside of you, Justin Liao," The Hound said, "And I sensed you wanted answers in regards to the death of Lihua Zhao."
"Yeah, I do," Justin said, "Who killed my grandmother?"
"Well, all I can tell you is that it was her time to die," The Hound said, "All is well in the world when that happens."
"I don't think that's all you came here to tell me, Doggy,"
"Hmph, it isn't," The Hound, "You want answers, but you don't understand that everything comes with a price Mr. Liao..."
"Well," Justin said as he ran a hand through his hair, "My grandmother said everyone
has a price whether physical or emotional."
"But is it a price you're willing to pay?" The Hound asked as Justin went silent.
"Yes, yes I am," Justin said.
"You are not ready." The Hound answered.
"What? What makes you say that?" Justin asked.
"... Because you don't even know the price."
Justin felt pretty stupid.
"Before I continue, let me ask you what you want?"
"I think we've been over this..."
"Do you want to know the truth behind who killed your grandmother, or do you want information that could aid you and your friends in the battle against the Glutton? Or let me ask you a better question..."
The Hound paused for a few moments.
"... What would Lihua want you to do?"
"Stop these stupid games."
"Answer the question."
"Answer. The. Question."
"... She would want me to stop the Glutton over her, okay. Are you happy?" Justin turned away as he sighed.
"I am quite satisfied, maybe you are ready for the price," The Hound said. "Allow me to give you a very helpful piece of advice... do not trust the others."
"What? They're all I have?"
"But, you are not aware of something the Child glossed over in their rush to tell everything you need to know to open your mind," The Hound said as he stood up, "The Glutton's influence is in all of your minds."
"Wait, what does that mean?"
"Allow me to begin my explanation that by Awakening your minds are specially hardened to outside influence. It is why you managed to maintain your sanity while others haven't, and became thralls to the Glutton. However, you aren't impervious to it, merely resistant. During the first night when the Glutton tormented you, it planted its seeds in all of your minds. If exposed to too much of the Glutton, those seeds will begin to grow and it can begin to exert its influence on you."
Justin patiently listened.
"At worst it can enthrall you, but fortunately, by doing so, you will be cut off from your abstractions. So you can easily dispatch them."
"... Yeah, fortunately."
"But, I doubt you'd want to kill one of your compatriots," The Hound said, "The only way to purge its seed from your mind is to seal it back. There's a point where it'll break your mind beyond all repair. I'm more than certain you're going to lose a friend a two to it."
"Thank you for letting me know..." Justin trailed off. "But, what is the price?"
"Ah... you remembered..." The Hound spoke in a low tone, "... Maybe you are ready to face the mountain."
"And what's in the mountain?" Justin said.
"Challenges that few are prepared for," The Hound said, "The Child will explain everything you need to know... I would help but I do not feel that the group is ready to accomplish the task they seek. And while I can help, there are things that not even I am capable of."
"I want to know the price I have to pay, bastard."
The Watchers retreated to their underground complex, deciding to change their plans. A portal opened and they all appeared as Amethyst wiped the blood off of her dagger. She shook her head as Goro was the first to speak,
"What's our plan?" Goro asked.
"I didn't want it to come to this," Amethyst said with a shake of her head as she went over to the library part of their complex and there was a book resting on a table. It was old, decades old. She opened it up as she flicked page after page of research until she found it, written in a completely unknown language that was seemingly made up out of a bunch of symbols.
Eras ago we were unsure of how the wielders of the White Light even came to be. When they left us, after what happened with the Glutton, they took all traces with them.
Or at least that's what they thought.
We stumbled across this complex and it had to be made by them - it was full of their symbols, their plans... after all, before the Glutton interdimensional travel was impossible. It was a messy place but we found some usage in it by making it the home base for the Watchers. After some digging we realized something; the Wielders of the White Light were not born, they were created. All in this place. It required a ritual involving a Nexus point and a group of Awakened.
The point is to open a portal directly into the Luminscience itself and bath someone in its powerful energies to give them power like no other. The power that was used to seal the Glutton. If we can replicate this, we can make new wielders of the White Light, and become all-powerful. The ingredients are simple, we need one Awakened that are strong in each of the lights:
An Awakened with powerful rage, fear, love, desire, happiness, pride, anticipation, nostalgia, sadness, hope, courage and apathy, and we must throw them in the pure Luminscience located in a Nexus point. We can do this in our home universe, but it'd be easier to use Mount Ever Reaching as it's safe from the League's eyes.
We have to keep this secret from the League, as those greedy bastards would kill to have this power. If we keep this card in our pockets we can become on top. No longer will be assigned to the Watchers be a punishment for those they want out of their hair.
"That amount of pure Luminscience is lethal for the mind," Cindy injected, concerned. "It'll kill them."
"We have no choice," Amethyst said as she turned around to face Cindy. "We need a solution to this problem and we're out of easy ways out."
"What if we contact the League?" Cindy asked.
"All that's going to happen is that they'll cordon off the universe in fear of the Glutton," Amethyst said, "Which means we won't have anywhere else to go back to."
She shook her head as she pushed Cindy aside, "I am your Captain, and you are just a squire. You do not object, you do as you're told. Now rest up, because if my guesses are correct they're going to be right where we need them." Amethyst announced to the group as she marched back to her quarters and slammed the door behind her. Leaving the Watchers confused about their leader's actions... and sanity.
The latter was more likely the case as Amethyst, the second she was alone, tears streamed down her face and she slammed her fist onto the wall. "I'll kill you, Britney Williams..." She muttered to herself, "I promise!" The powerful emotion she felt brought her back to something that she didn't want to re-experience.A recollection.
Back to her home universe of Glint, the recollection brought her back to her childhood home. A room that overlooked the city of Buroko, a place that's located in Africa.
"Yes, Pierre! That's it!" Amethyst moaned in satisfaction before the climax came and she fell over on the side of the bed and into the sheets. Her head still full of energy, she looked off to the side and saw her love, Sir Pierre the Worthy, of the Knights of Luminescence. A large, muscular, hairy man with a thick beard and piercing eyes that she loved to look into.
"Amethyst, that was great as always, however," Pierre said, as he slid out of the bed "I must take my leave."
Amethyst eyes drifted towards the floor as she softly said, "Leaving so soon, Pierre?"
"Yes, I must have a meeting with my superiors about becoming a general in the Knights," He started, "Then I can get you out of that realm and somewhere where your talents are better suited."
"Like your bed?" Amethyst said with a giggle. "But it's not that bad, love."
"But, alas, even if you are following in your father's footsteps," Pierre said, "It's where they stick the unruly Squires; quite literally far away from them as possible. They are scum."
"But, I am their leader, a mother to them," Amethyst came out and admitted, "They are far from scum, misguided yes, but not scum."
"Lady Amethyst, you will understand in time," Pierre said as he finished buttoning up his shirt as he walked out the door. He put his hand out for her to grab, "Care to accompany me?"
"... When I put clothes on."
Amethyst wore a red dress through the courtyards of the Knights of Luminscience fort. She walked along the pathways, holding Pierre's arm as she watched the sights of Knights training Squires. Doing rigorous exercises such as climbing, mock-sword fighting, and jumping jacks. She remembered when she was that age... good times. On the way there she passed Britney Williams talking to a knight and she wanted to talk to her dear friend. They eventually ended up at a big building and after opening it up they proceded through the lobby into a large room with a massive round table. Which had many gentlemen that she knew as Generals and high-ups in not only the Knights of Luminscience but the League as a whole. Amethyst put her hands together as Pierre walked over to the table.
One of the men, an aging gentleman with a beard was the first to speak, "Pierre Alakija, step forward." Pierre did with his hands at his side, standing tall and straight. "You wish to undergo the mark of a General? Do you understand what this means?"
"Yes, High-Lord General, Adonis," Pierre said.
"I don't think you do," Adonis said, "I see you flaunting your titles around and their benefits... but what about the price, young knight?"
"I am Sir Pierre the worthy, Vice-General Knight," Pierre stated, "I haven't gotten this far without kno-"
Many screams cut through the air, and the window that overlooked the room showed a massive shadow. Suddenly, a beast crashed through the window and immediately everyone dispersed and drew their weapons. It was a massive wyvern made out of green light with black light taking the appearance of thorny vine-light veins.
"Apparition!" One of the generals shouted.
"How'd it get in?!" Another asked.
"I'll eliminate it!" Pierre shouted as he drew his sword from the sheath on his back and went to battle with the beast. However, it had a target and it lunged for one of the generals and launched him into a wall... and Pierre stopped in shock as he muttered something under his breath. Before he charged in to fight the beast.
Amethyst herself was pushed out of the room as the knights came in to engage the beast, she didn't even see the beast get slain...
Hours later, Pierre was sitting on the edge of the bed while Amethyst, nude, was smiling. She gently tapped the bed with her fingertips. "Pierre, why don't I help you take your mind off the general..."
"No, lady Amethyst, I am not in the mood." Pierre turned her down which ended with a pout from Amethyst as she turned in her bedsheets. Eventually, she felt Pierre enter the bed as she drifted asleep.
A rustling of the bed stirs her awoke as she tried to hide but she felt Pierre get out of the bed. She listened motionlessly as she heard Pierre put his clothes on and tried to discreetly leave the room. There was something wrong here, and she was going to find out. When he was out the door she had thrown on a dress without another hint of clothing. Not even shoes. He moved through the halls of the estate as Amethyst clumsily followed behind him. They went through the streets of Buruko eventually ending up in the woods outside of it... she remembered there was a park. She didn't know how long because she was too focused on being discreet. He stopped and Amethyst found some bushes to hide in. The pathway was illuminated by torches as Pierre waited on a bench. Eventually, someone approached and Amethyst raised an eyebrow as she saw who it was.
Was Pierre having an affair with her?! Amethyst's blood boiled as her head filled with assumptions, but the truth couldn't have worse. Pierre hopped up to his feet with his fists balled, with Britney having a look of regret on her face.
"Britney!" Pierre shouted, "What is the meaning of this?! This was not apart of the deal."
"I know..." Britney couldn't dare to look him in the eye as she turned her head away, holding onto her forearm with her other.
"You were supposed to scare them, your Apparition was supposed to make me look like the hero, not kill Lord-General Adonis!" Not even letting her get one word in, he slapped her across the face. Her head was turned thirty degrees where it remained. Britney was silent for a moment as she truthfully replied.
"I know, but Lord General Adonis proposed attacking Shimmer and securing the mountain," Britney replied as her face stung, but her sigils began to brightly glow. A razor-sharp vine slowly primed itself behind him as he spoke, but Amethyst missed it as she was focused on Britney's speech. "Regardless of our deal... I couldn't let the idea spread to not even another member."
"This is what I get for trusting you Society members," Pierre said, "I could have helped both of us."
"But in the end..." Britney said as she hesitated for a moment before she sighed. "... You only helped me."
The vine quickly cut through the air and stabbed him through the back with such force it ended up on the other side. Amethyst almost shrieked but covered her mouth tears ran down her eyes as she slowly backed out of the bushes. Bloodshot everywhere as Britney walked up. "You should have had your weapon drawn already, Pierre. You should have been smarter."
"Britney..." Pierre said, "W-why...?"
"As useful as you would be as a General in my pocket," Britney said, "I can't risk the information getting out, at least not this early on in my plans. Just know I take no pleasure in your pain... I don't even want to do this to you... to Amethyst."
"But, I need to protect my home, regardless of the price."
Amethyst's blood boiled, but she was unsure of what to do... could she kill someone she thought as her sister as she reached for her trusty dagger. No... she turned herself invisible as she walked away. Watching Britney bury Pierre in the soil with her plant powers.
The night was rough, Amethyst didn't get a lick of sleep. Her best friend just murdered her lover as she revealed both of them were involved in the Society... the antithesis of the League of Luminescence. The sun hit her as she decided on how she was going to respond. She hopped out of the bed, still wearing the dress from earlier. She stormed through the manor halls until she made it to her destination...
Ayron Sinclair's room.
Her father. Amethyst stormed through the doors as she found Ayron awake, watching the sunrise, he was an older man by the time this occurred. He turned his head towards Amethyst as he asked,
"Amethyst, this is your vacation," Ayron said with a smirk, "You need to rest, the Knights haven't ruined your sleep cycle like they have ruined mine."
"Father, I have something to discuss with you... something important."
"It must be," Ayron said, "You stormed in here this early."
"You heard of Lord-General Adonis' death?" Amethyst asked,
"Yes... filthy Apparition,"
"Pierre was responsible for it,"
Ayron's heart skipped a beat as he nearly broke his neck turning his head towards Britney. "Amethyst, you mustn't-"
"He was conspiring with Britney, who's a member of the White Spider Society!" Amethyst said. "Who killed Pierre this night, I watched! I want to bring her to justice!"
Aaron sighed. He was completely silent for a few moments as Ayron began to explain, "I am aware she is a member of the White Spider Society."
"Whaaaaaaaat?!" Amethyst said, "Why would you allow this to go on? Does Micheal know?!"
"Who do you think got her in contact with them?"
Amethyst balled her fists as she marched over and slapped her father with all of her force. "You bastard! Why would you let this go on?"
"Because... she's needed," Ayron said, "She was an instrumental part of me and Micheal's plan to rebel from the League... which we devised years ago but it hasn't come to fruition nor do I think it will at this point." he shook his head.
"But, that's not important at the moment," Ayron said, "You must not take action against Williams."
"Wh-why?! You don't want me ruining whatever scheme you and Micheal have?!" Amethyst screamed at the top of her lungs.
"Because of that relationship between us and the Alhudaybi family."
Amethyst went silent as Ayron continued.
"We are their closest alley, Amethyst. You can try to get her executed, but if they find out their daughter was in League with our worst enemy; they will surely come after us with or without a reason. And even if they don't, that'd negatively impact you anyhow because think of how badly it'd look if your best friend was a traitor."
Amethyst realized he was right. "Then I'll-"
"... Kill her yourself? Without proof, you'd be tried and hanged at the behest of the Alhudaybi family. And Micheal is a very cunning man; he'd raise a daughter that leaves no traces." Ayron explained, "If they find out Pierre was responsible for the death of the High-Lord General they'd surely kill you to send a message to other traitors that their loved ones are on the line for this treachery as well."
Every word that Ayron was saying was right and Amethyst didn't have an answer.
"Listen to these words: forget about Pierre and leave Britney alone. You need her for the Watchers, I have a feeling things are going to change very quickly."
Ayron left her with the words as he looked out the window. Leaving Amethyst to walk away silently as she realized she had no other option at the moment.
But she'd get her revenge.
One way or another.
The recollection faded away as Amethyst fell onto her bed.
"I'll kill you even if it kills me."
She looked at the door as she said to herself,
"No. Matter. The. Cost."
Billy Lawson as he slept, found himself drifting away into the darkness.
Into a different world altogether.
Into a world that was not in the design.
He found himself in a dark room that was faintly illuminated by an orange light coming from somewhere
. Nothing in sight.
"What's going on?" muttered Billy as if he were coming out a drunken stupor. He felt like he must've been dreaming, but the ominous orange light filled him with a creeping dread.
"Hello, Billy Lawson," Appearing in a mass of embers was the Speaker. A being that Billy was vaguely familiar with... as nobody was sure if it was human or the Glutton taking human shape. Of course, the bald Speaker appeared with their hands behind their back as it spoke. "We have much to discuss if you are willing to listen."
"What do you want, man?" yelled Billy as he jumped up to his feet, stumbling ever so slightly as he adjusted himself to avoid falling out of a bed that was no longer beneath him.
"A different perspective, if you are willing to listen," The Speaker held up a had and a glowing orange orb appeared in their hand. "I can sense inside of you that there is great grief in you... the same grief that is killing your sister, whether the two admit it or not." The Speaker held the words in the air as they turned around.
After first Billy didn't do anything but glare at the Speaker, the orange light reflecting off the lens of his glasses. His brother was dead. He had come to terms with that or at least pretended that was the case, even before he had found Henry's picture on the wall of victims in the old school. Yet, hearing his name twisted a knot in his chest. He sucked in his lips and said, "You can't talk about him."
"But, what if I told you he was still alive and well? That he went to a place that coward Reid would never touch?" The Speaker turned around, "That instead of death at the hands of John Reid, he found something higher. Salvation from a cruel world at the hands of Child, that he found..."
"I've heard enough of this kind of shit in Sunday school, dude," said Billy, his voice dropping into a (rather unthreatening) growl. "Unless you can prove it, I'm not listening."
"Very well then," The Speaker slowly disappeared as they spoke in a low tone, almost as if they were disappointed. "... I'll let him speak for himself."
Slowly in a mass of orange sparks and embers, he appeared.Henry Lawson.
Billy knew that this must've been a trick. He told himself that there was no way that this could be real. Yet, in front of him stood his little brother. He was taller, broader, and had aged he would've aged, it had been four years since he had gone missing—but it still looked like Henry. He had the same blue eyes as his siblings and his messy, blonde hair was shoulder-length, and he had the same scar on his chin from the last time he ever rode a bicycle. Henry wasn't dressed in tatters or some weird cult robes, but normally, wearing an old jean jacket over a black hoodie. It was as if his brother had just grown up in Farmer Hill as normal instead of being lost to the world for almost half a decade. Billy felt his lip quiver, he opened his mouth, and no words came out.
"Hey bro, been a while," said Henry. His voice had deepened.
"What the fuck, this isn't real," said Billy.
"It's a little weird for me too, man," said Henry, cheerfully. "But it's real. Trust me, you almost get chased around by some crazy farmer so he can just take this from ya," he lifted his right palm to reveal a sigil shaped like a compass rose, "only to end up in hiding for four years and you get used to the weird. You gonna tell me this is the craziest thing you saw this year?" Billy didn't say anything. "I figured as much. Listen, Billy, there's something I gotta show you. I swear you'll love it. Follow me, man."
"What about Penny?" asked Billy as Henry turned away. His brother stopped, but he didn't turn around.
"What about Penny?" he asked, his voice falling flat.
"I mean don't you want to get her?" said Billy as he took a step towards Henry.
"Yeah, I do," said Henry, and he started to walk again. He was heading towards the orange light, and it appeared to Billy that with each of his brother's steps the light grew bigger and brighter. In a moment it was all Billy could see, just a giant, shimmering pool of orange, and the faintest black speck of his brother disappearing into it. For a moment Billy didn't know what to do, and then he heard Henry's voice in his head like how he would sometimes hear Penny. His brother had said, "Aren't you coming?"
However, this bastard, in an attempt to get that power killed him and woke it up!
Those words hung in Sharon's head as she couldn't go to sleep. Part of her wanted to step out there, tell Justin that he could go to sleep and sit out there and reflect. At least someone would benefit from it, she was at least that
compassionate. But the fact of the matter is; it was the only explanation, as much as she hated it. Maybe she was just ignoring the obvious and knew what happened all along! Maybe it was all some coincidence but in reality... coincidences don't happen. Sharon hopped out of the bed, which belonged to someone who not around anymore. She felt safe enough in here to sleep in her underwear, the same ones she's been wearing for days now since the trek back to her father's house was, at best, a pipe dream in this weather.
Hygiene was something Sharon overlooked even when the world wasn't about to end.
Sharon looked up at the mountain and couldn't help but think about better days as her mind drifted back into a recollection.
The recollection took her back to the Reid household... which Sharon was limping back to. This was years ago when she was only twelve years old. She was incredibly bruised and battled, and her nose was oozing blood. She held her arm as she walked up to the Reid household and opened the door. The first sight was her mother at the kitchen counter, well her backside. She turned around and Sharon immediate began sobbing as she ran over to her daughter.
"Sharon!" Amy said. "What happened?"
"The girls beat me up again!" Sharon said as she loudly cried. "I can't take it anymore, I hate it so much!"
"Sharon, Sharon, Sharon..." Amy said. "You gotta calm down baby." She said as she embraced Sharon and her soft touch immediately calmed Sharon down. She carefully walked her over to the sofa as the girl sobbed.
"Carla was mean to me so I punched her, so she and her sisters jumped me after school."
"Baby..." Amy said, "You need to ignore those girls, I keep telling you... you keep giving them a reason to do this to you."
"But, mom-" Sharon said.
"I know I said to stand up to them... and you did," Amy started, "But this is too much."
"I just get so angry..." Sharon said as Amy put a hand on her shoulder.
"I understand, it's going to be okay," Amy said, "Let me take you upstairs to get cleaned up, dinner's almost ready..."
Then the recollection ended... she hated her father for taking her mother away from her, but one thing she was going to do was make sure that nobody else has to suffer for the sins of the Reid family.
She looked up at the mountain.
She was going to make things right.
Lynette looked at her hands and realized that she was transparent... she knew that it was a recollection that she was experiencing. She was so familiar with these, but she still had so many questions about everything. She looked around and saw woods after woods - almost as if it was the very first recollection. It was the dead of night and the area was illuminated by the oddly vibrant moonlight. Turning her head she saw a group of about four people in cloaks that walked through the woods illuminated by lanterns. She recognized the cloaks and it was obvious that they were the Watchers - given the patterns and colors on their cloaks - but there were two wearing plain white cloaks, leading the group.
When they walked by they spoke,
"Are you ready for this?" The woman that Lynette recognized as Floris spoke.
"Yeah," She heard John Reid under the cloak. They stepped into the darkness, and eventually, they ended up at a massive tunnel at the base of the mountain. It was up a hill in which they stood in the base of... John sighed as he was about to walk in, but he felt Floris' hand stop him as it wrapped around his forearm.
"Remember John," Floris said, "The Luminscience is strong in there... so strong your mind might not be ready to handle it. You will experience memories in such a way that'll blur the line between your own, your friends, and the dead."
"I understand," John said, "I have to bring this bloodbath to an end one way or another."
Floris smiled at him from underneath her cloak, as she let go and the two proceeded into the caverns. They disappeared into the darkness, but John raised a hand and a flame appeared in the palm that illuminated the caverns. They marched and marched, and marched through the tunnel, one would think they would get lost. Eventually, they ended up at a huge nexus that had a tunnel for each direction... but they heard sounds of beasts coming towards them. Suddenly the lanterns and torches that were dormant were alit with flames. And in shining white light the Wendigoes appeared from all angles. They climbed on the walls and took perch on the edges of the tunnels with their massive claws, and laughed.
"Shouldn't have come here, Reid!" One Wendigo shouted. "Once you're out of the picture, we're going to eat Farmer Hill alive!"
"That's what I come here to stop..." John Reid said as he walked up, flipping up his hood. "... Among, other things." They lunged as John Reid snapped his finger and massive spikes of earth appeared out the ground and impaled a majority of the Wendigoes and they faded away.
"Stop him!" The ring leader lunged at him only for a portal to appear in front of him and send him flying into another Wendigo. He opened his palm and a massive jet of flames immolated one of them as he moved forward, and one-touch with his left hand reduced it to ash. Another came running up behind him and the ground he was standing on flipped over and crushed him. Meanwhile, Amy's abstraction was charging before it activated and unleashed a wave that froze all of them that got close. Which meant all John had to do was snap his fingers and stone spires appeared out of the ground and killed them all.
"Well, that's one problem we-" John said as he grabbed his head in pain, he screamed at the top of his lungs as he experienced a recollection.
"Faster, Jen, faster!"
The girl said as she was running through the woods, she looked back and saw her friend tripping. Before she knew it, one of those things were on top of her. "JEN!" She screamed at the top of her lungs before she felt an impact than a sharp pain in her stomach. She looked down and saw the Wendigoes claws piercing through her and she was being lifted into the air. She spits up blood as she watched her best friend get devoured by monsters and it wasn't long until it went dark.
He felt himself tumbling over as a gunshot rang through the air. Looking around he saw a minecart to his left and Amy on top of him.
"John Reid!" A voice shouted. "It's over!"
He saw a white light that only he could see as it blurred - If you do this, we'll all be safe.
- his vision. He climbed up as another bullet cut through the air and put a hole through the minecart and made wood fragments flying everywhere. He got one good look at the person - The Watchers, this is their game! They tricked us all!
- and saw a boy his age with blonde hair and was very pale and scrawny with green eyes and had on tattered clothes. Mark.
John... he heard so - This town has never seen such a string of murders before
- many voices that he couldn't think. He grasped his hands with both hands as he tried to carry himself forward towards him, and Mark lowered his gun.
"Amy," Mark said, "You know what you have to do. He can't take all of the memories. If you kill him now, we both can get his abstractions and end this fucked up game the Watchers have been playing."
"No," Amy said without a second thought, "I can't stand the thought of going against John because... I love him." That was when the pulse of blue light appeared and froze his gun and forced him to retreat. She knelt to John as she said, "He's getting away, we have to stop him!"
John recovered as he got up and the two ran down the tunnel he was going and they followed the sound of his footsteps. They kept running down the tunnels until they saw a literal light at the end of the tunnel... an orange light
. They ended up in a weird room... it was massive, probably as big as the fields in Farmer Hill, but in the middle of the room was a barrier that cut the room in half. It was white and transparent, but it did little to keep the orange light given off by this... sun? It was a massive sun-light entity with a black mass underneath the light.
A strange being for sure and Mark was touching the barrier.
"John! You gotta listen to me!" Mark said, "This... this is the Glutton! This is the source of the problem and... those God damn Watchers. Thousands of years ago, they
put it here and now they're trying to protect it!"
While they were talking, the brightest circle of the orange light moved downwards. John approached Mark as he desperately pleaded with him.
"It's not of this world, it's like the shit Lovecraft talked about but worse. You gotta stop this guardian nonsense because the only thing you are guarding is this!"
"I'm sorry, Mark," John said as a stone spire erupted from the ground and impaled Mark through the stomach. "We can't have anyone break the masquerade, and Farmer Hill only needs one protector. I'm sorry."
"You're- making... a mistake..." Mark since as his life faded and his sigil brightly appeared through his clothes. John walked over to his body to get the abstraction...
However, the Glutton had another idea. The bright orb had charged up and pierced through the barrier for a moment was an intense beam of orange light that engulfed Amy. She loudly screamed as John immediately turned around and yelled,
The beam faded as Amy fell to the ground spread eagle, John ran over to her as he shook her by the shoulders. "Amy! Amy! Can you hear me?!" He looked her into the eyes.They were glowing a bright orange.
Anger + Irritation - Patience...
Next morning, before the second encounter...
Grand Ridge Academy.
Lynette was jutted awake after the recollection... it seemed everyone was awoken at the same time. But, Lynette found herself drifting over to the bathroom and looked at herself in the mirror. She was wearing a black bra and some pajama pants she found in the laundry room. There was something off about today, maybe it was because she was nervous about fighting a world eating horror... but was it her fight? She was forgetting that she came here for a reason, and that reason was the one thing keeping her up at night. But that recollection she experienced made her think. What if the answers are in the mountain? Maybe she should have a glance or two at the mountain.
She walked out of the room and glanced outside to see that the snowstorm was finally letting up, but it was far too foggy to see. It was not warm enough to omit the coat, and she decided to also omit a shower.
After all, she was probably going to shit herself.
Putting on some jeans that she got God knows how long ago for this kind of weather, she stopped as she felt a twinge of guilt about what happened to Jordan Nichols. She was a friend and... if only she was there, then maybe they would have fought the Hound off. But, if Jordan went willingly, then who was Lynette to say anything? She wouldn't do it herself but she didn't know much about what Jordan was going through.
Nor will she ever.
She continued putting on her clothes which ended with Lynette putting on her huge parka and she marched out of her room. The first thing that Lynette saw was Sharon who immediately hugged her. Instead of taking it as a touching gesture, Lynette awkwardly laughed.
"I just wanted to say I'm sorry," Sharon said.
"Everything. I want to apologize..." Sharon let go of Lynette and looked off to the side.
"I think Paige is the one you should be apologizing to... everyone else you were mean to be..." Lynette trailed off as Lynette looked off to the side. "... Kinda dead."
"But, my dad, he did so much wrong in the world..."
"And sins of the father doesn't exist," Lynette said softly, but she grasped Sharon's wrist as she leads her along to the lobby. "C'mon, we gotta meet up with the rest of the group."
Eventually, she leads the group to the lobby where the others were assembled around the map and the glass. Lynette had her bag full of the copied maps as she smiled at the group, "Hey, I did what you asked, Brit," She said to Britney.
"Great, so..." Britney turned towards Penny. "The balls in your court, what would we do oh wise leader?"
"Did everyone experience the same recollection?" Justin asked as he had a hand to his chin.
"Yeah," Lynette said. "Where John Reid went into the mountain."
Justin was silent for a few moments as the Hound's words still haunted him to this hour.
"I have to talk to you all about something... but it's going to be tough to swallow."