Masked: Chapter One

July 21, 2010
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A mask went over the pale skin of a face concentrated on the reflection in the mirror. Maybe a night away would do him some good. He was realizing this at about the same time the realization that it only covered the physical features and not the emotional ones. Running a hand through platinum blonde hair he muttered to himself looking at it through steel grey eyes he frowned a bit. He hated when things weren’t perfect. Making sure all the little pieces of hair that formed his precisely cut bangs he pushed back from the mirror and dusted off his tux removing all the little spots of lint that had gathered when he leaned against the marble sink. Taking a deep breath and was finally ready to make an appearance. The cane he was using just for show clicked against the hardwood floor as he walked across it.

Sounds drifted up from the ballroom and he winced at the noise. He wasn’t ready for this and he knew it, but he had to be didn’t he? He had to be there for his family, as the young gentlemen looking for a lady. Gripping the silver sphere that was on the top of the cane with a white gloved hand he made the decent of the glittering stairs. Jason Aaron Morieux could see the chandelier pulsating from the music and the hot bodies were already pressed together in a thick mob that made him want to throw up. The sickly sweet mixture of sweat and perfume made his nose tingle and he held in a sneeze as he looked upon the scene before him. As the grainy sound of music stopped all one hundred and fifty bodies stopped the grinding and turned to stare at him like a piece of glass in a museum. The breathing stopped and their eyes dropped to the ground not daring to look up for one more moment. They were scared of him and as he put on his smug attitude he was glad. He was embracing it. Pulling his chest up and his shoulders back he handed his cane, gloves, and top hat to a butler before heading out onto the dance floor. The cheers as the music started back up echoed in the large house and his mother and father weren’t to be seen, but he knew exactly where they were. They were ruling over the small party even though they weren’t really royalty. They were high up there but were not in the line up to become something important anytime soon.

His family was an interesting one. They had lied, cheated, and stole to get where they were at. Of course their small fortune had a hand in it also. They were loaded, mainly from his grandfathers thriving business, a business that Jason did not like to think of. It wasn’t exactly a business he himself wanted to get involved in. His family killed people for a living. They were assasins trained in basic skills. Who would need that kind of person in England? Well that’s the thing, many diplomats did. They needed it done fast and done in secret. Just like a painter used paintbrushes and paint and an actor used their voice and a script the Morieux family used poison and revolvers. Nothing else, because the rest of it could be tracked and they would be out of a business. Even if they were caught they had their means. To add onto the growing list of sins the Morieux’s also peddled illegal drugs. Something so treacherous in this day and time that you would be sinning yourself if you knew but didn’t tell. It was a growing business these days and it’s how they got to live so luxuriously. Plus at the turn of the century they were turning in a hefty profit.

Jason wasn’t known for that though. He was the only one in the family who wasn’t old enough to get involved yet. At seventeen he was put out there to find a woman. Someone of high class and stature that could throw them into the rankings of the diplomacy, hence all the parties and glamour that was put into this masked affair. He was popular with the ladies and with people in general. Not being known for the drugs, sex, and greediness that was his family made him known for other things. Like how mysterious he was and how dark his appearance was. He wasn’t like the other people he boarded with at school here in England. He was different. He was unique and that made him attractive.

Laughter brought his attention out of the thoughts that were clouding his mind. The girl who was all over him wasn’t someone he would remember later. The same plain jane blonde hair and pretty face. She was the same as everyone else, but dancing with her would please his parents. Pressing herself closer to him bile rose in his throat but he just held her hands and let his lower body move on its own free will just to put up the act. Looking down on the girl whose name he didn’t even know and didn’t care to know he knew that she wasn’t the one. Releasing her without another word he glanced around the ball room. It was dim and the gasping of breath was filling his ears making him sweat in his tuxedo jacket. Removing himself from the room he headed out to the courtyard to catch some fresh air.

A shadow caught his attention and held it. The blackness was dashing across the front lawn. Taking the chance to start running he tried to follow along but soon lost them among the wide lawns and manicured gardens. Coming to a halt to catch his breath he ruffled his hair mentally smacking himself knowing that it was probably just a dog. He wanted some adventure and that’s what made him try and start on a pursuit. The thing was the black shape was the size of a person.

Papers hit the floor with not more sound that a ruffle and a scatter. It was the only other noise in the room riding alongside the manic breath of a person in a frightened hurry. Palming the small handgun that she had carelessly tossed on the oak desk she held her breath pointing it at the study door. Voices could be heard oblivious to what was going on behind the door they were in front of. They were too caught up in each other to notice anything else. As the voices drifted away she let out the breath she had been holding in a long hiss as she pulled out the next drawer and dropped it to the floor leaning over in her chair to begin digging through the last set of papers. Her heart skipped a beat as she found what she needed. A file filled with all the transactions that the Morieux family had made in the past month was now in her possession. The means of which she got it were the easiest thing she could have done. Putting everything she had scattered pristinely and perfectly back into the desk she headed for the door tucking the gun into the pocket of her jacket. Making sure the coast was clear she made a left and then right ducking into the butlers pantry and out the hideaway door.

Sprinting across the grounds making sure she stuck to the shadows she let her black hair swish behind her. The moonlight was her only guide as she reached the destination. The man leaning against the lamppost was her older brother and he patted her on the head as he stamped out the cigarette in his hand. “Good job little sister, you’re making the family proud. You’re jobs not done yet though, get back in there.” As the folder exchanged hands her ocean blue eyes pierced the darkness and were smoldering as she stared at her brothers face. She did all the work and he got all the credit. Malice flashed across her face as her finger twitched to pull the trigger but she just let the file go and took a step back bowing her head slightly before heading back to the mansion.

The Akane family had been in a war with the Morieux’s since the day that they decided to try and become powerful. They had stolen the Akane’s business and territory. Now it was payback. That was why Shay Akane was here. The youngest girl of the family but one of the most powerful. She was always ready with a knife or a gun. She looked small for her age, but she wasn’t someone to be messed with. Her father didn’t give her the nickname “Single Shot Shay” for no reason. Hiking back up into the gardens her small frame was decked out in all black and the backpack that hung off her shoulders was filled with everything she would need to be dolled up for the party she was about to attend and try and win over the prized possession of the Morieux family.

Speaking of the boy was right in front of her and she had to do a quick double step back and throw herself into the shadows of a bush to make sure she wasn’t seen. Peeking through the thin branches she could see the boy looking around a little bit confused. She stayed as still as possible but it still seemed he was staring right at her. She watched as he shook his head and turned away toward the large mansion that hung in the night air. When she couldn’t see anymore she scurried out of the garden and into the house searching for a bathroom to change in.

Once she was presentable she applied her last swipe of lipstick and made sure all the pins that were holding the curls up were secure in their bun. The rest of the mid back length hair fell over her shoulder and across the front of her dress. She was supposed to catch his attention and keep it. Like a Cinderella story she was supposed to keep him wanting more. Her small nose ring glinted in the bathroom light as she turned from the mirror and made her way toward the grand doors entering into the ballroom. Stepping into the room she looked at her feet seeming innocent before finally looking up and piercing everyone with her icy eyes. She was unnoticed for a few moments and then everyone stared. The girls in envy and the boys in lust. She didn’t care about them they only blurred her vision until she finally found that she caught the eye of the young man who held the demeanor of a prince. Holding his eyes she could see his breath leave him as he ignored the girl who was all over him and stared at her watching her every movement. Blinking once and looking away she knew that she had caught him and that he had fallen. Which was exactly what she had meant to happen now she just had to wait for him to come to her making it seem like he made the first move and she hadn’t had this planned at all.

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