z
  • Home

Young Writers Society


16+

It ended at Midnight -Chapter 15

by myjaspercat


Warning: This work has been rated 16+.

Melody

I followed closely behind the woman and the little girl, frantically trying to keep up with all the twists and the turns. Damn, this house was a lot bigger than I originally thought it was. How could they afford something this nice, they didn’t look that wealthy and there was no family back home in Falkirk or the surrounding town of Arkala who were this wealthy either. Where the hell were we then. The two ahead of me were so fast that I had trouble keeping up and the second I stopped to take a deep breath I had lost them. For a second I started to panic, afraid that I wouldn’t be able to find them or my way back to the kitchen in this maze of a house but in that same second I heard the loudest smash from down the hallway. I remembered what the little girl said about him breaking things and realized that had to be where they went.

A couple more turns and seemingly endless hallways and I had finally caught up to the woman and little girl. The two of them were standing outside a rather large set of french doors, both pleading loudly to whoever was on the other side.

“Jackie, please let me in,” the girl cried, “I brought mommy with me.”

No response, just another loud crash and a muffled obscenity. I hesitated a little ways from the two of them, afraid that I may be overstepping boundaries. Well, quite frankly, just afraid of being here. I could feel an anger in the air that was so tangible it suffocated me. I was surprised the two of them weren’t having as much trouble as I was being here. Another step towards them and the anger caught itself in my throat, digging its barbs into my flesh. I gasped, clawing at my skin. The same panic I felt when I thought I was lost without them began to set itself in my stomach again. I tried to breathe normally but the emotion swirled around me, seeping into every crevice of my body. I stopped listening to what the two were pleading about and focused on regaining my composure.

I was the least of their problems right now and I couldn’t let them see me struggling so I turned around and tried to walk back the way I came. Hoping that the further I got from the room, the easier I could push the anger away from me. What the hell was happening. This wasn’t like it was when I had gotten upset. That was an anger I could place, an anger I could feel inside my soul. This, this was something different. It was like it was a part of me but also not. Like I was somehow connected to it. I continued walking down the hallway yet no matter how far I got it seemed to follow me. As if the second it sensed my presence it latched itself onto my body and clung there.

With another loud crash coming from the room the anger turned from a suffocating blanket to an almost raging fire. The heat of it radiated around me like a Falkrik summer; the kind of summer that was thick and heavy and no matter how hard you tried you couldn’t shower away the stickiness of your skin after being out in the sun too long. I stopped walking and leaned against the wall of the hallway, trying now so desperately to breathe. Looking back, I could still see the woman and the girl begging to be let into the room to no avail. It made me want to break down laughing, how hard they were trying. Obviously it was pointless. Why couldn’t they just give up, had they not realized that they were only making whoever they were pleading with angrier.

“Please for the love of God leave them alone,” I whimpered from where I sat pressed up against the wall. My fingers curled into my hair as I tried to claw the anger from my scalp.

I stopped paying attention, in fact I wasn’t quite sure how long I had been sitting there. The two voices shouting at the door started to blend together into one and I had to try very hard to block them out. Everything about this whole situation was confusing the hell out of me and making it really difficult to keep things sane inside my mind. I shouldn’t be here. Really, I shouldn’t. I didn’t know who these people were, nor did I know who the hell they were trying to calm down on the other side of that door. In reality I should have been running for the hills or whatever the saying was. Trying to find a way back to my best friend and unfortunately my family. But I couldn’t.

There was something here, something strange and alluring that was pulling me to the door. The emotions that were definitely someone else’s kept gnawing at my skin. Eating me alive from the inside out. I couldn’t understand why but some part of me was telling me that I needed to be there. I needed to calm whoever it was down.

“It’s him Melody, he’s the person inside that room.”

A small yelp escaped my lips as I looked up startled. There was that voice again. It was the same melodic voice I heard on my birthday and in the woods surrounding Falkirk. It was also the voice I heard outside in the clearing before Jack came outside to talk to me. I couldn’t place when it had come back but it was here now and with it came a rush of calmness. Like the voice was trying to tame the anger that had engulfed me. Where it pushed forcefully and painfully, she came with a softness that put out its fire. I sighed in relief. Finally feeling like I could take a breath of much needed air.

“You need to get up, child, this is no way for a Luna to behave,” it continued, “be strong for you will be the face of hope to these people. You are their goddess and you need to start acting like one.”

Taking another deep breath I rubbed my sweaty palms against the sides of my shorts. The voice’s calmness is taking over the anger fully now. I couldn’t quite explain it but I knew she was right. About me needing to get up at least. I had to face whoever it was they were trying so hard to talk to if I ever wanted to go home. I knew that at least.

“That’s right, child. Keep going.” She said as I pushed myself off the floor.

Wiping the tears from my eyes I walked back down the hallway over to the woman and the little girl. They both looked in my direction for a second and the woman tsked as she pulled me into an embrace. Her warmth warmed me up in a comforting way whereas the anger I felt moments before left me blistering hot. She pulled away for a second to look me in the eyes, the words she didn’t say spoken through our shared look. Like the voice inside my head I could tell she was trying to give me some strength and I quietly thanked her for it. Somehow in the span of a few hours I had grown really attached to her and I still had no idea who she really was. Maybe it was the beginning of Stockholm syndrome or whatever it’s called but I felt safe in her arms.

“Hey pretty ladies, whatcha up to over there!”

A boisterous yell echoed down the hallway towards the three of us. I glanced past the woman’s shoulder to see a man walking towards us, his hands gripped not too well onto a bottle of something dark. The liquid sloshing around in the glass, threatening to spill over.

“Oh Luke there you are, why didn’t you come sooner when I called you.” The woman said.

“Sorry Ms. K, I had a little important business to take care of, you know.” He replied, holding the bottle up triumphantly. “I totally beat Myles at that game of strip poker we were all playing. Like damn should have seen that mutt all down to his skivvies and whatnot. Shit was epic.”

I took a step away from the woman as the man, Luke approached us. He looked familiar, like a hazy face that lingered on the edges of my memory. I tried to take him all in without seeming like a creeper but the man was tall. Which seemed like a trait all these people had apparently. Why they hadn’t stood out back in Falkirk before was weird because they totally would have. He was also gorgeous to look at. He had that pale tan skin that just glowed even when he wasn’t in direct sunlight and his hair was long and golden.

Luke looked at the three of us with the goofiest smile on his face, “what’s going on anyway. You sounded kind of urgent. Don’t tell me that boy of ours has gone on another bender again.”

“I don’t know what’s wrong Luke, that's why I called you. He won’t answer the door to us and I can hear things breaking. I’m getting kind of tired with all the things I’ve had to clean and replace in my son’s room so can you please try to talk to him.”

“Oh damn, no can do Ms. K, he’s blocked me from his mind but no need to worry I got a key here to his room. Just scooch on out of my way and I’ll get that bad boy unlocked for ya.”

Luke took another swig of the drink from his bottle before he tossed it to the floor where it shattered, spilling its contents onto the rug. The woman sighed as she ran a finger through her hair, muttering something under her breath. My attention turned back to Luke as I watched him stop in front of the door. He was just way too familiar.

I wanted to ask him where I knew him from but I still couldn’t think straight with all the emotions rushing through me. I wasn’t even sure I would be able to get the words out right even if I tried. The voice in my head that spoke to me earlier whispered around the edges of my conscience. Her words are incoherent but there. I could feel them tugging me to the door so I for once I listened. Like really tried to listen and I took a few steps towards Luke as he approached the room. My fingers twisting in the hem of my shirt as I waited anxiously for him to open it.

“Wait Luke, why in the goddess’s name do you have a key to Jack’s room.” I looked over at the woman who now stood with her hands on her hips in a very disapproving way. “Don’t you think it’s a little impolite to-”

“Shh, Marianne it’s ok,” Luke interrupted as he placed a finger to her lips. There was a small smile playing at the corners of his mouth as he pushed the key into the lock and opened the door. “I’ve got keys to every room in this house.” 


Is this a review?


  

Comments



User avatar
1518 Reviews

Points: 159492
Reviews: 1518

Donate
Mon Jun 19, 2023 12:31 pm
IcyFlame wrote a review...



Hello! I'm back again for another review of this story. I'm glad to be back in Melody's perspective, although the story does feel very weighted towards her. When you go through and edit, it would be good to consider whose stories you're trying to tell. Elizabeth and Veronica were interesting inclusions to see what was going on at home, but given that they hadn't had chapters dedicated to them before it felt a little out of place. I think exploring both Jack's and Melody's perspective is interesting, but currently I don't think the right balance is here.

I find Melody's narrative a little bit all over the place in this particular chapter. Some of that definitely comes from her fighting herself and is therefore understandable but there are some points where I think some work is needed. For example:

It made me want to break down laughing, how hard they were trying. Obviously it was pointless. Why couldn’t they just give up, had they not realized that they were only making whoever they were pleading with angrier.

“Please for the love of God leave them alone,” I whimpered from where I sat pressed up against the wall. My fingers curled into my hair as I tried to claw the anger from my scalp.


She wants to laugh, and yet she's worried about them being hurt? The two conflicting feelings don't make a lot of sense, and the laugh kind of seems out of nowhere so as the reader I'm not sure how concerned I should be over the whole situation.

Also, the 'whoever they were pleading with' seemed strange given that his sister has used Jack's name. Doesn't she realise he's in there?

I think the rest of this chapter works well, but I still feel we need more setup. Melody has absolutely no ties to this family other than feeling like she's attached to Jack. He's not given her enough of a reason to even contemplate staying yet, so why is she still here? I'd like to see more of her internal thoughts around this because I just don't feel it's justified yet. I could see her not wanting to return to the mess of her family, or not being well enough to leave but I need an explanation beyond her being interested in Jack.

See you on chapter 16!

Icy


Image




User avatar
172 Reviews

Points: 34172
Reviews: 172

Donate
Sun Jun 11, 2023 7:50 pm
View Likes
Roxanne wrote a review...



Greetings @myjaspercat!

(Amazing username, by the way :D) I am here to shed some light on this fascinating piece of work with a review that contains some shell-ightful insights.

First of all, I really must say that you have written a very compelling story. I read this chapter all the way through without stopping. You really have a unique writing style and also unique characters. I did not start reading your story from the first chapter, forgive me for that, but now that I have started reading at chapter 15, I am more than just curious to know the beginning.

All right, on to the review for chapter 15 of "It ended at Midnight".

The story effectively builds suspense and intrigue through descriptions of a large, mysterious house and the characters' desperate search for someone.
Creepy big houses in the middle of nowhere are my absolute favorite in stories because literally anything can happen there. Most stories with the "huge houses" end with murder or ghosts, but yours had something completely different.


A couple more turns and seemingly endless hallways and I had finally caught up to the woman and little girl. The two of them were standing outside a rather large set of french doors, both pleading loudly to whoever was on the other side.

“Jackie, please let me in,” the girl cried, “I brought mommy with me.”

No response, just another loud crash and a muffled obscenity.

The endless corridors were a perfect description of such a scene and the attention to detail surprised me, for example the "French doors". It's possible that this was built by a Frenchman or owned by a Frenchman, but I'm not sure if it's true, since the characters mentioned in this chapter are not French, this is indicative of their names. But at this point of the story, anything could be possible.

The story, well, this chapter had my attention from the very first paragraph.
It is always important to have a good introduction, not only does it set the tone for the rest of the chapter, but it also makes this part of the story more intriguing and definitely draws the reader in.
Your description is easy to read and understand, but so is your writing style. From "...frantically trying to keep up with all the twists and the turns" to "For a second I started to panic, afraid that I wouldn’t be able to find them or my way back to the kitchen in this maze of a house...", I enjoyed reading it. Melody's sense of panic made me curious about what might happen next.

However, I do have a small idea for improvement here. If you would like to make the introduction more intriguing, you could add a little boost to your descriptions, this would definitely make the introduction more captivating.
Here is an example of how you could do it:
I hurriedly followed the woman and the little girl, doing my best to keep up with their swift movements. The sheer size of the house took me by surprise. It was much larger than I had initially imagined. Questions swirled in my mind. How could they afford such a lavish place? They didn't strike me as wealthy, and back in Falkirk and Arkala, no families possessed such opulence. I couldn't help but wonder where on earth we were.

Struggling to maintain their pace, I grew breathless and took a moment to catch my breath. Fear gripped me as I worried about losing them in this maze-like house, not to mention finding my way back to the kitchen. Just as panic began to consume me, a thunderous crash shattered the silence, resonating from a nearby hallway. A sudden realization struck me like a lightning bolt. The little girl had mentioned someone breaking things, and that must be where they had gone.



You have created a vivid atmosphere that Melody feels connected to, and I must say that you have skillfully portrayed the palpable anger and emotion in the house.
You certainly know how to invite dread, anticipation, and mystery into this party.

The introduction of a melodic voice adds an element of mysticism and provides a contrast to the overwhelming anger, offering a sense of relief and guidance. From the lyrics, I assume this has happened before. It seems to be a mystery to Melody, as it is to me.

But I am curious, therefore I will make up some theories and conclude that this is a werewolf story. I mean, it has all the perfect things in it to lead to that. The conversations that can take place inside someone's head, meaning Melody, but Luke also mentioned it, he said that "he's blocked me from his mind...", I think it's called mindlinking, if I'm not mistaken. And then the use of the word "Luna" by the mysterious voice, that would probably be an alpha female of a wolf pack, Melody could be that leader. Wow, I never thought I knew so much about werewolves. But then again, this is all just a guess, it could be possible that you are referring to something completely different, which I actually doubt, but this is just one of my usual mysterious theories.

Luke his arrival and the revelation that he has a key to Jack's room raised questions about his relationship to the characters and their connection to the house. The mystery of the chapter is definitely not diminished, and I like that.
But the fact that Melody knows Luke from somewhere adds another mysterious element to the story.

The chapter leaves me with a sense of anticipation as the door to Jack's room is finally going to be opened, creating a desire for me to learn more about what lies inside and the mysteries that will be uncovered.
But I have to stop myself from reading chapter 16, because to fully understand the story, I have to start from the mysterious beginning of the story. I am definitely into this story, congrats on writing a story with a captivating blend of suspense and mystery.
Keep on doing what you do!

Image

Me,

Red Riddle Rose





Perfect kindness acts without thinking of kindness.
— Lao Tse