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Within My Blood (Chapter 9)

by myjaspercat


Warning: This work has been rated 16+.

Christian

The warm water seeped through the cracks of Christian’s fingers as he let the sink run. He was tired but seeing his brother again was invigorating. He was worried when Jasper took off, afraid that maybe he would leave for good this time. What their dad and brother did was inexcusable and incredibly cruel, even if it was done with the intention to ‘build character.’ He tried to go with Jasper at first, tried to convince him that he didn’t need to be alone but Jasper had insisted on it. He claimed that he needed time to ‘find himself again,’ whatever that crap meant.

Six weeks, that’s how long Christian had gone without his brother and it had already started to eat him up inside. Jasper was the only one Christian felt that he could turn to. The only one he could express his true feelings to without being shot down. Jasper didn’t judge him, he didn’t tell him that ‘he just needed to suck it up and get over it already,’ or ‘turn a blind eye and learn to live with it because it was what’s for the best.’ Jasper listened, he nodded when Christian needed someone to nod and he constantly told him that one day he could just escape from it all, the same way Jasper escaped from his own father all those years ago.

The running water started to chill and Christian looked down at his now pruney fingertips, he was going to get in trouble if he didn’t get to the dinner table before his father. That was one, amongst many, things about their family that he couldn’t seem to comprehend. All the damn rules and regulations. Sometimes Christian just wanted a little bit of freedom in his life. Growing up there were always a million different things he and his siblings could and couldn't do. He knew why they had to be careful. He understood that if an outsider found out what his family did they could all be in a lot of trouble, but it was exhausting, always having to hide.

Christian turned the faucet off and grabbed for the towel that someone had lazy thrown onto the counter. If his father saw it they would all be in for another lecture. He dried his hands off and then carefully placed the towel back onto the metal rack that hung over the toilet before walking out of the bathroom. He couldn’t wait to talk to Jasper tonight. Christian wanted to ask him about everything. He needed to live through his brother’s freedom if he was going to hold onto his own sanity.

“Christian honey,” his mother’s soft voice drew him from his thoughts and when he looked up he saw her standing in front of him, her hands twisting nervously around her apron.

“Yes ma’am,” Christian responded, giving her a warm smile while he tried to find the reason for her nerves.

“Do you mind makin’ your way downstairs and see what it is that’s taking your brother so long. I sent him down there awhile ago"

The steps creaked in their usual way as Christian made his way into the basement. His mother wanted him to check on Jasper and find out what was taking him so long. He was just supposed to bring the plate of food down but, knowing Jasper, it wouldn’t be put past him to get a little dirty in the process. He loved the kill just as much as his father and Xander. Well maybe a little bit more than they did sometimes. . It’s why he always fit in so perfectly with their family. That’s what set Christian on edge though, just a little bit. He wasn’t in the room when his mother had sent Jasper down to the basement so he wasn’t sure if she had mentioned to him that no one was supposed to harm this girl.

It was Christian’s doing. At first, when he stopped his father from torturing this girl his family looked at him like he was crazy, even little Amelia stared at him like he was doing something completely outrageous. Yet. Christian couldn’t help it. There was something about her that just set his whole soul on fire and he was hell bent on protecting that. When he explained to his parents what he felt when he looked at her they seemed to light up with joy and his father cuffed him on the shoulder with pride. He didn’t understand at first, why they responded so positively but then when his father started to describe the night he met his mother everything started to make sense.

Christian was pulled from his thoughts as he got closer to the bottom step, from here he could hear a faint whimpering. The sound caused his stomach to drop and he finished his descent in steps of two. He reached the bottom in mere seconds and that’s when the sharp tang of blood filled his nostrils. WHAT THE FUCK. His mind started screaming at him while he tried to comprehend the scene in front of him.

Jasper

Jasper could feel his heart rate start to slow down as his hearing came back to him. He barely remembered blacking out and kept trying to put together the pieces of what happened before he did, so he could be prepared for whatever he was about to see when he opened his eyes. However, no matter how hard he tried he couldn’t quite wrap his finger around it and it made him uneasy. Something seemed completely wrong about this entire situation. Jasper could definitely tell that he was in the basement at the motel but he couldn’t remember why he came down here. He also couldn’t remember why his head felt like it had split apart in two and it made him extremely uncomfortable. There was something he was missing and he desperately wanted to figure out what that was.

Then it started. The screaming. It was faint at first, just muffled noises in the background but as his heart slowed more and the ringing stopped he could hear it clearer. Jasper shook his head, trying to shake the fuzziness from his mind and as his vision came into focus he gasped at the scene in front of him. The girl lay unconscious in front of Jasper, her hair matted to her skin from sweat. That was the first detail he noticed. Her hair. Why, Jasper couldn’t quite place it but something in him gnawed at the image of it. The red curls seemingly painted against the paleness of her skin. The unnatural paleness, a color so devoid of warmth Jasper wondered just how long she had been kept down here in the musty basement. There was something else though, a faint doting of purple along her neck so deviously inviting. It called to the side of him he tried so desperately to bury. Spoke whispers against his brain. And then it hit him and he knew. The darkness in him laughed bitterly because it too came to the realization that Jasper remembered everything he had just done.

Christian

His voice tore from his lips in a strangled cry as he watched Jasper pick himself up off the floor. It took him a few minutes to actually realize what had happened but he could feel a deep anger roll around in the pit of his stomach. Christian couldn’t understand how this could have happened, he wasn’t supposed to touch her. No one was supposed to touch her. Without thinking Christian ran over to where his brother knelt over the girl and tackled him to the ground. His fist connected with Jasper’s jaw in a loud pop and he could feel the bone shift under the skin. Christain’s hand ached, he definitely didn’t hold his hand the way Xander kept trying to teach him and he knew he would feel it in the morning. However the aching didn’t stop him from raising his fist again and again, each blow landing on his intended target.

He hadn’t realized that he had continued screaming until he could feel the dryness of his throat choke him. Christian had to pull back for a second to regain his breath and somewhere in those few seconds Jasper had managed to wedge himself out from his body. His face was red and swollen and the delicate skin around his eyes already started to gain a faint purple tint to it. A part of him felt a little bad about the condition Jasper was in, but his rage still boiled. Christian was about to lunge at Jasper again when the softest whine from behind him escaped her.

Swiveling around he could see that she had curled into herself, her chest rising and falling with gentle sobs. He stopped for a second, forgetting what it was that angered him so much and rushed to her side, his fingers hovering slightly above her skin, too afraid to touch her. He didn’t want to hurt her. Instead he brushed the hair from her neck, his anger boiling inside him at the sight of the bruising that already began to adulterate her beautiful skin. He let her hair fall back over her shoulders, instead opting to lift her off the ground and into his arms where he knew she would be protected. Christian had to get her upstairs, he didn’t care what his father said this time. It wasn’t a discussion anymore, it was a necessity.


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57 Reviews


Points: 37
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Thu Oct 07, 2021 2:23 pm
Rosewood wrote a review...



Hey Rosewood here! (*insert rose emoji here*)

Having just stopped by for a review, I'm kinda lost with the story, so I'll do my best by giving you a more writing-based critique than plot-based one.

The warm water seeped through the cracks of Christian’s fingers as he let the sink run. He was tired but seeing his brother again was invigorating. He was worried when Jasper took off, afraid that maybe he would leave for good this time. What their dad and brother did was inexcusable and incredibly cruel, even if it was done with the intention to ‘build character.’ He tried to go with Jasper at first, tried to convince him that he didn’t need to be alone but Jasper had insisted on it. He claimed that he needed time to ‘find himself again,’ whatever that crap meant.


Ooh, I like this as an introduction. Descriptive writing has always been my favorite so I always enjoy the detail and colorful vocabulary intertwined in the story; which by the way, you are obviously very skilled at incorporating. If I were to be a teeny bit nit-picky, (which you are free to ignore), I'd have to point out that the apostrophes should be before the period and comma when saying 'build character' and 'find himself again'.

Jasper listened, he nodded when Christian needed someone to nod and he constantly told him that one day he could just escape from it all, the same way Jasper escaped from his own father all those years ago.


I'm not sure why exactly, but having read this a few times over, it sounds a little strange to me. Perhaps try something more along the lines of "Jasper had listened throughout it all, had nodded when Christian needed someone to nod, and had reassured him that one day he could escape it all- the same way Jasper escaped his own father all those years ago." Then again, this is just my opinion!

Christian turned the faucet off and grabbed for the towel that someone had lazy thrown onto the counter.


I think you meant "that someone lazy had" or "that someone had lazily".

The sound caused his stomach to drop and he finished his descent in steps of two.


I'm not certain, but did you mean 'as' instead of 'and'? I think that may make the sentence flow better.

The girl lay unconscious in front of Jasper, her hair matted to her skin from sweat. That was the first detail he noticed. Her hair. Why, Jasper couldn’t quite place it but something in him gnawed at the image of it. The red curls seemingly painted against the paleness of her skin. The unnatural paleness, a color so devoid of warmth Jasper wondered just how long she had been kept down here in the musty basement. There was something else though, a faint doting of purple along her neck so deviously inviting. It called to the side of him he tried so desperately to bury.


I don't see anything here needed to be fixed, I just wanted to point out how much I love it! Legitimately, I felt my stomach churn reading this passage. I just adore the flow and the words you used to describe the situation-

His fist connected with Jasper’s jaw in a loud pop and he could feel the bone shift under the skin.


Again- chills.

It wasn’t a discussion anymore, it was a necessity.


As someone who struggles with closing statements, especially for a chapter in itself, this was wonderful. I may have no idea what's going on, but I can almost feel the weight of his words.

Anyways, this was a bit longer than I first intended, but your work was too compelling not to comment on! I may have to go back and start reading it from the beginning if I get the time. You characters seem well-defined, your story invigorating, and the dialogue well-placed. Good luck to you and your book!

And as always,

Keep writing!





Bananas
— looseleaf