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Author's note: This is a side story of a long series
Life as a reaper is lonely. Life is lonely period. At least I have a family who understands, at least to an extent. I mean it’s not my fault, all I did was pick up the scythe it was my aunt who made me. I bet I’m confusing you right? Well then I’ll go back some to the day I became a reaper.
It was someday in the week. I was ten years old and visiting my aunt who currently took up residence in France. Like always my aunt traveled in style and had some connection so she was staying in some mansion from some friend. I do remember it was raining, a horrid thunderstorm in all its glorifying beauty. I walked down the maze like hallway to find my aunt talking into a crystal ball, it was always eerie, but I never found it odd for she always did it. She dressed in all black, from her heels to her slacks and her turtle neck. Her long straight black hair swept about her. She was quite elegant, quite contrary to my mother, I felt bad thinking that but it was true. I remember countless times how grateful I am to take after my aunt rather than my mother, it’s not that my mother isn’t beautiful, because she is very beautiful, she just didn’t have the elegance my aunt has.
I ran up to my aunt while she was talking to her crystal ball, inside it was only a hooded man. I spoke without thinking.
“Aunty, is that your boss? Do you have to go to work again? Don’t go, I get so bored without you here and Alfred is soooo boring!” Alfred was my aunt’s beloved butler who was assigned to watch me when Aunty was away. Alfred had a starch white goatee and bristly hair to match. He was very stuck up and was no fun at all.
My aunt just looked at me in disbelief, a smile appeared on her face and she spoke to both me and the man in the crystal ball.
“I told you she had the gift, she can see you after all. Darling, would you like to accompany me to work today?” I had always been curious about what my aunt did, and I obviously said yes. She told me I had to do something first, inside her pants pocket she pulled out a little black box and handed to me.
“Open it.” I did as she was told, I opened it up and a lovely little tune started to play. Inside the box was a charm bracelet with only one charm. A small scythe glistened in the light; I immediately put on the bracelet. My aunt spoke again, “Now repeat after me,” I nodded my head. “I accept thines most gracious offer and will fulfill my duties to the best of my abilities. Eternal life I accept and to do your bidding I shall, none will stand in my way. I, then say your whole name, accept the offers of a grim reaper.” I repeated what she said with earnest.
“I accept thines most gracious offer and will fulfill my duties to the best of my abilities. Eternal life I accept to do your bidding I shall, none will stand in my way. I Belle Morris Foster accept the offers of a grim reaper.” I light shone around me, it was filled with power and when it went away I was cloaked in a black fabric and held a scythe just my size, and the charm on my bracelet was gone. The rest of my visit that summer was very much filled with events that you most probably will not be interested in.
But that is the basics of how I became a reaper. Now I have my own crystal ball, and explaining to my mother was a nightmare. Apparently she managed to not become a reaper and live a normal life that was all she wanted for us, especially after my father died. Normal wasn’t even our family’s vocabulary. Soon though she accepted it was in my blood and we made a pact. If I don’t do anything weird and go along with mother I can do my job and be free of her when I’m eighteen, but if things get too complicated for me and I can’t keep the cover I can go to my aunts whenever.
The time to go to my aunts was now I thought this over and over. If only my mom didn’t get engaged.
I knew my mother had been dating this man for a while, and I knew he had a kid, I was cool with it. But I didn’t think that kid was him and the guy was my principle. Not only that but he has some weird son complex, it freaks me out, but it makes my mother happy and I can to my aunts whenever, nonetheless I did not expect him to be so nosy.
I went to school and it was pretty normal, for me anyways. I don’t like people unless there dead or well….not entirely people. I’ll come to that explanation later. I’m that loner who stays in the back of the room and avoids all eye contact. I was a shadow, the wind’s breeze; someone you knew was there but never saw. Until that da—I mean, until that person appeared. It was during lunch and it was completely unexpected. I was in my school disguise that means drawn on freckles really thick glasses old baggy torn clothes and I had my hair in unsightly braids. Plus my naturally pale skin, when used properly, can be useful to look plain and ugly. Yet still….it was horrifying watching that thing walk over to me, sit down and say in his soft voice, “Hey sis, I’m going to eat lunch with you today!” He’s a year younger, the principles son and extremely gorgeous. Clear icy blue eyes and side swept hair a brown color. A smile spread across his face, it was sickingly sweet.
“I think you have the wrong person.” I think that was the first sentence I spoke at this school I wasn’t really sure. Something in the back of my mind echoed ‘This is bad; this is bad, this is real bad.’ Eyes all around staring at me, and there goes my quite existence.
“No you’re going to be my new older step-sister. Your name is Belle Morris Foster. My dad is engaged to your mom.” I sighed. I felt really bad doing this, but if I was told I could have prepared. His humiliation is my entire mother’s fault.
“Look, I do not know you, and that is not my name! Know your own boundaries you insignificant scum.” I scoffed at him, saw his expression and got a little laugh out of it. I got up and turned around to throw away my trash, from behind me I heard a whisper.
“You’ll regret that.” An immensely evil aura began to float around me it smelt like daffodils in the morning’s mist. As soon as it came, though, it was gone.
I left to go and slip back into my class, I tried to avoid all eye contact, but the rumors were already spreading. A sigh escaped my lips as I pondered on what to do I knew though that my mother wouldn’t let me leave until after the wedding. Until then I would wait it out and just deal.
The rest of the day was a blur, I didn’t really care for it, and I paid more attention to the echoing whispers. Suddenly, at the end of the day, a call on the intercom bellowed.
“Belle Foster please report to the principal’s office. I repeat Belle Foster please report to the principal’s office.” I stood up from my chair, while everyone asked “Who’s Belle Foster?” I walked out the door without saying a word. I had a bad feeling that my mother was involved in this somehow. Worse part is that tonight, June third a Friday, I have a ‘job’ to do, and mother knows that.
I knocked on the office door. A sweet voice told me to enter, I followed its command. The principal was a hearty man, a ruffled beard and kind eyes covered his face. I’ve never been in his office, but it was cluttered in an organized way. You could tell he knew were things were but just couldn’t get them in order, this bothered me a bit.
“Come, come, sit, sit.” He gestured to one of the empty chairs; the other was filled by his son. He wore that sickingly sweet smile again. I cautiously sat down. “I thought we could have a nice chat Belle.” I gave him a weird look and all he did was laugh. “I’ll be taking you home, actually we are all having dinner together also I would like to speak to you about,” His voice dropped, and he glanced at his son before continuing, “What happened in the lunch room today.”
“Dad, it’s all a misunderstanding. Also about dinner is it possible to reschedule I have some where I have to be tonight at exactly eight o’ three.” The man got all softened at the mention of me calling him ‘dad.’ I didn’t really care, it’s just a formality.
“Oh, if so then I guess we can forget about what happened then if that’s true.”
“But, Dad!” My soon to be step-brother whined, I still didn’t know his name. Dad merely held up his hand and spoke again.
“But, as I was going to say, nothing is more important than family. I have talked to your mother about this and she said it’s not that important.” I thought quick and made up some excuse. It would be like my mom to do anything to get me out of my job.
“But it does have to do with family. It’s my aunt, she’s currently in Rome and that’s the only time she is free to talk! To me it’s a life and death situation, speaking figuratively of course, my aunt is like my second mother.” He pondered on this. Then he asked me a few simple questions.
“When was the last time you got to talk to her?”
“Eight months ago.”
“How long will you be?”
“A couple hours. I don’t know really, it all depends on if we lose track of time.” I’m putting some extra time for me to get some Blood Wine at Vinny’s. I’ll explain that later too.
“Fine, we will eat out quickly then you may talk to your aunt afterward.”
“Where are we eating at?”
“A quant little restaurant called Vinny’s Diner.” I hope he didn’t see the look on my face, Vinny owned two chains, a club and a diner. I usually go to the club but I also have a pass for the diner.
“You have a pass?”
“No, but your mother said she and you have one and they have a plus one each.” Oh, so that’s why I have to come. Ugh, this is going to be hard. I can’t believe she is taking them to a Vinny’s; does she want to expose the secret?
It was a nightmare driving with them. I still didn’t know their names. Then in a whispered voice in the back my step-brother started to talk.
“Hey, what’s the big deal about Vinny’s? I heard it’s impossible to get into why do you guys have cards?” I could tell him the truth. It would go a bit like this. “Vinny’s Diner and Vinny’s are a club and diner for all supernatural beings to hangout. Vinny’s the owner of course, and also the guardian of Alyce and Zoie Goldenwing, who are living legends in our world. My family is a line of grim reapers so that’s why we have cards to get in. It’s pretty epic in there and how do I love Blood Wine but my mom probably won’t let me have any tonight, oh and you wouldn’t be able to handle it. People with pure human blood can’t digest it properly.” Of course I couldn’t say that, yet. So instead I told him this.
“Depends on if you’re talking about the club or the diner, but for either one you have to have connections. Oh and by the way, what’s your name?” He looked at me in disbelief.
“Do don’t know the name of your own step-brother?”
“Soon to be step-brother,” I corrected him.
“Whatever same thing, the name is Leon, Leon Blackwell.” I’m so going to call him Leelee from now on. “But who does your family have connections too?” The answer for that question was obvious, I almost laughed.
“My aunt, and now me because I know who she knows, let’s just say I’m taking over the family business from her.” I laughed a bit.
“What’s the business?”
“Shhh we’re here.” I shushed him quickly as we pulled into the driveway. Vinny’s Diner is elegant, the total opposite of the club. It was a large cream colored building, draped along the top was a red umbrella cover. The double doors were blocked by two guards. I recognized Bruce, but the other guy was new.
Bruce is a big man, no one you would want to meet in a dark alley, but underneath that muscle is a giant teddy bear. Just don’t tell anyone he has a rep to maintain. I saw my mom’s car and knew she was inside the restaurant already. There was a long line waiting to come to the door, people who obviously who couldn’t get in were also in the line. I just skipped them all, I’m a VIP. The only people who cared were those who didn’t belong.
“Hey Bruce, I’m bringing mine and my mother’s plus one.” A smiled spread across his face, his dimples shone prominently.
“Hey Belle, sorry I normally wouldn’t check you but since you have guests and there’s a newb here I have too.”
“I understand, just use codenames, we have pure blood humans.”
“Gotcha, oh hey Belle, this is Rex. Rex, this is Belle she’s one in a long line of GR’s. Belle, Rex is a were.”
“What’s a GR?” Leon was behind me, ease dropping on the conversation as Rex patted him down. Rex finished him, and Dad, then came to me.
“Nuhuh, if I have to get patted down only Bruce is doing it no newb. Oh, and what a GR is, is none of your business for you don’t have a gold pass.” I pulled out my pass and Bruce scanned it, a gold pass is the second best. I only know a handful of people who have a platinum pass, my aunt being one of them. That’s a really big privilege because not even Mary-Anne and Lynx, Alyce and Zoie’s best friends, don’t have a platinum pass. People ooed and awed at the pass, I just ignored them as Bruce opened the doors to let us in.
“See you later!” I winked back at Bruce he also knew I had a job tonight. Bruce is a fate he helps me with these kind of things sometimes.
“I’m not sure I like those people are they friends of yours?” Dad spoke worriedly, I spotted mom off at a table and we walked to her, no one bothered to stop us.
“Bruce? Yeah, I’ve known him for ages. He’s a real teddy bear, and the best listener around.”
“I still don’t like him.” He made me angry, I’m letting him in my life to make my mother happy, not me so I don’t want him meddling in my affairs.
“Well it doesn’t really matter what you like now does it?” I snapped at him and that shut the old coot up.
I sat across from mom beside Leon at the table. I took a glance at my watch taking special care of the time, it was 5:43. I still had time. I was upset though, my mother wouldn’t let me have the ‘usual.’ The menu is basically the same as the clubs but it’s in a more formal atmosphere, but in either place the food is five star. My usual is a lightly burned dragon tail with some seasoning of powel powder dowsed in a light herbal sauce and an unlimited glass of blood wine. But no, I had to have normal food, but the issue is that to me it is normal. I ended up have a fettuccini pasta with a salad side and water. ‘Normal’ food isn’t fun at all. We were waiting for the food and Mom and Dad were trying to include me in their conversation when my phone buzzed.
Name- Connor L. Jones
Place- Coldwell Park, near the giant oak tree
Cause- Gang fight
Time- 1:55 am.
No refunds, all payments will be sent to your account after completion of job.
I sighed I was going to have to sneak out tonight.
“What’s that—gang fight?!” Leon peeked over at my phone, keeping what he saw to a whisper.
“Shut up and mind your own business!” I was already hating this arrangement.
I don’t remember the dinner or car conversations, I do remember Leon pestering me about the text I got. I just ignored him. We got to my house, than I learned they had moved in today. Leon of course had to take the room next to mine that had the adjoining door. Great. Good thing they left my secret room alone, no one but me has the key and no one but me knows what is in there. It was easy getting out at seven to do my first job, the second job…. that’s where I got an issue. I got home around nine, then I had to sneak back out at eleven, but Leon didn’t want to leave me alone.
“So I’ve been wondering, what’s a GR?”
“You wouldn’t believe me if I told you.” It was the truth. I remembered a conversation I had with my mom after I came back from my first job.
“Now honey, it’s ok to tell them what you do, but only if you are one hundred percent sure they won’t freak out.”
“Try me, hey cool bracelet.” Leon was walking around my room eyeing everything on my walls. “If my dad saw some of these things he would freak.” He pointed to my shrunken head collection lying draping off the side of my dresser.
“Don’t touch those I had to get them myself. Also I won’t tell you unless you’re sure you can handle it.” He went from eyeing my shrunken heads to touching my crystal ball. I leapt up from where I was sitting and grabbed it from him.
“Don’t touch anything in my room, especially this.” I snarled at him as he cringed back. I kept my eye on the clock. I had an idea, a good idea, one that will probably force me to my aunts. “Do you really want to know what I do?” Leon nodded his head, “Fine, come with me then. We leave at eleven.”
I was ready to leave by ten thirty. I was waiting for Leon though, he took forever. This time, I took out my braid and brushed out my hair, it was smooth and glossy. It fell in beautiful waves along my sides ending at my waist. I took off the fake glasses and stared at my deep green eyes, I smiled as I painted myself to my true perfection. I wore black from head to toe a black turtle neck with black skinny jeans and black boots. Black blends well.
“Who are you?” Leon walked in, dressed in his jacket and jeans as always. He still looked fine, a bad thing to think about my soon to be step-brother but it’s the truth. Plus I couldn’t help but think of him as cuter when he admitted my beauty.
“Belle, now come on. Don’t be loud or else you’ll wake up the neighbors.” I spoke in short whispers.
“You’ve done this before?” He looked a bit shocked at me.
“More than the moon rises.” That was all I had to say in the subject.
By the time we arrived at the park it was one thirty. It took so long because we walked, and somebody had to use the restroom every ten seconds! We got to the park and the only things light were the street lamps. The trees stood like ominous stone walls blocking all paths. I picked a random bench and sat there.
“Now what?” Leon whispered in my ear.
“Now we what.” I responded back. I fingered my bracelet ready to call on my scythe at any moment.
We sat in silent, and let the seconds tick by. I saw Leon tapping his toes on the ground impatiently, but what I was waiting for would happen any minute now. Off in a foggy distance I spotted a few figures gouging at each other’s throats. Leon jolted up, I urged him to sit back down and wait quietly. We couldn’t afford to be spotted. The fight went on for a while, a few men fell down. Soon only two stood left. Punches were swung but the details of the battle were hard to tell in the dim night’s light. Only one thing I knew for certain, someone was going to die.
As soon as I finished my thought, and the clock struck one fifty-five, a gun fire rang through my ears. The man who did the shooting as a lifeless, not yet soulless, body fell to the ground. Leon was freaking put beside me, he was panting and murmuring something along the lines of gibberish.
“A gunshot wound, eh? Thought I might get someone who would go out with a bang tonight.” A smirk appeared on my lips because of my wicked crappy joke.
“B-b-b-bang? Your joking right? He isn’t dead right?”
“Don’t be a pansy.” I shouted back at Leon as I walked toward Connor’s still body. I grabbed the scythe off of my bracelet, watching as it grew to its rightful size. With one long slice I cut open a hole in Connor’s chest, so his soul could escape. Standing next to me was a grey bulb of light.
“Oh, looks like we got ourselves a mixture. Have to check the books for you.” I pointed at the light jokingly. I pulled out a small piece of parchment from my pocket.
“Connor, you’re in luck. Have fun in heaven!” I grabbed the bulb of light and kissed it, the kiss of death. Slowly it took the form of Connor’s body and drifted off into a blinding light. I turned around to see Leon’s shocked face, instead my face was shocked.
In the light of heaven golden wings grew on Leon’s back. I could only do one thing at that point. Yell.
“Bloody! You’re a wicked halfling! Angel one at that?! Blow my mind why don’t yah!” He looked extremely confused. I would be too, but with the heavenly light gone so were his golden wings. Also Leon’s consciousness, I ended up dragging his heavy, lazy, passed out butt all the way home. Home was not a pretty sight.