Heya Uniquifiers ♥️
Today I’m back with something a little more exciting and way more personal. As you can probably guess by as now, I write loads of stories in my spare time, ones that stretch on to be as long as Harry Potter books! So, there’s a story I’m currently writing, a Work In Progress, and I thought, ‘Hey, why not share it with you guys?’ I’m only going to be sharing the first chapter (which is still pretty long), so make sure you comment down below if you like it or not!
Also, for your safety (we don’t want y’all nodding off to sleep, unlike me – it’s 4:08 AM right now), make sure you’re comfortable because this is slightly longer than a usual blog post. So, get the blankets and get ready! I need to hurry up because I’m going to be doing a lot of all-nighter sleepovers with my cousins this summer, haha. Lez go!
Run. Run as fast as you can and don’t turn back. Ever. That was the last thing they had told her before disappearing into the infinite darkness of the forest behind them, pulling her little sister along with them. Heavy footsteps were audible as they did so, indicating that the Dark Ones were following not too far behind, their swords unsheathed and ready to murder. Sasha shuddered, trying to forget the unwelcome image of her parents and sister both lying dead at the feet of Luna as she cackled manically, mercilessly, for her revenge. No, she thought firmly, her family were just fine.
So she did what they had told her – she ran and ran, stumbling blindly through the gloom. Her feet were aching and her chest heaving, but she didn’t dare stop. Not now. Thin branches tugged at her ivy-colored jumper, tearing holes in it and scratching her skin. She winced as she felt a sharp sting just underneath her collarbone. Even though the sun was up high, it could hardly pierce through the black shadows that the towering, looming trees were creating.
Panting and gasping for breath, Sasha’s knees buckled underneath her and she fell to the prickly ground, collapsing against the rough bark of a tree. Her cat-like green eyes fluttered closed, and then everything went completely black as she wandered into an eternal abyss of nothingness.
Sasha awoke to a throbbing migraine and a numb leg. She groaned and shook it to wake it up. Reluctantly, she slowly opened her eyes and instantly regretted it as unnaturally bright rays of light burned into her irises. She shut them again.
“Since when did the trees decide to move?” She muttered under her breath.
“Since you decided to die. They thought they should make way for the sun to shine a spotlight on you, just out of respect for the dead. Trees are very compassionate beings, you know?” A husky voice called out sarcastically in the midst of the loneliness, and Sasha’s eyes flew open. She scanned her surroundings to find the owner of the voice, and her eyes rested upon a tall, lanky but strong silhouette leaning casually against a tree before her, hands in pockets. Sasha squinted, trying to enhance the image, but it was too dark.
“Come into the light,” She ordered, suddenly feeling a lot like Belle from Beauty and the Beast.
The person obeyed, ambling carelessly into the clearing. He was wearing a grey T-Shirt underneath a black leather hoodie and black jeans. His sneakers were black too, and visibly scuffed, hinting that they had been worn one too many times. His hood was up over his head, and all Sasha could see was a shadow of his face. One of the things that she noticed straight away were the two swords hanging in a cross from his back, and she began to recoil. “Who are you? Are you one of them?” She spat the last word out as poisonously as if it was venom.
“A Dark One? Nope, that I am not. I am here to save you, though, Miss Damsel in Distress, so it’d be great if you would come with me without a fuss.” He pulled down his hood and smiled lazily, offering her his hand.
Sasha had to suppress a gasp as she saw his face for the first time. He had dark brown hair that cascaded over his eyes in messy curls and caramel skin. When he smiled, a single dimple formed on his left cheek. He had a strong jaw line and high cheekbones that brought out the color of his eyes – bright emerald green, like hers, but somehow more… pretty. They were fringed with long, dark eyelashes that any girl would have been envious of. Her eyes were blunt and plain, but if you looked close, his were full of small gold specks that made them glitter mischievously. Even now they shone, a hint of amusement passing through them as he waited for her reaction. The corner of his mouth curled up into a smirk, and Sasha realized how freaky she would have looked, staring like that. She jerked her head away so fast it could have snapped, and instead focused her gaze on her black boots.
“Actually, I can take care of myself, thanks.” She retorted, glaring as he raised a mocking eyebrow.
“Sure. I’ll just leave you here for the Dark Ones to catch up and kidnap you.”
“Hey, how do I know you aren’t a Dark One?” Sasha crossed her arms stubbornly.
“If I was, I would have killed you already by now while I had the chance. I was here the whole time you were unconscious, you know. Pandora told me to keep watch – our Instructor, by the way.”
Sasha wavered, before realizing that this stranger had a point. “Okay, I’ll come with you. On one condition.”
“And which condition is that, miss?” The boy said, feigning a posh British accent.
“You help me find my mom, dad and sister. The last thing they told me was to run, so here I am.” Sasha demanded, fighting back all the emotions that were bubbling up inside her. Grief, for missing her parents. Anxiety, for wondering if they were still alive. Anger, for the Dark Ones who had caused all this in the first place.
The boy sighed dramatically, slipping on a worn grey beanie over his head, a few strands of his hair wildly escaping it. “Okay, we’ll sort that out with Pandora. That’s what our kind does, anyway. Now, if you would please take my hand. My arm is beginning to ache. The name’s Aaron, by the way.”
Sasha mumbled an apology out of habit but stopped herself when Aaron laughed at her. She huffed, rolling her eyes, and took his hand, standing up to brush off her clothes and wondering what he meant by ‘our kind.’ It was risky, going with him, but it was all she had.
“So,” Sasha cleared her throat awkwardly, desperately trying to make conversation to make up for the thick silence hanging between them. They were walking through the forest, and although she was lost, Aaron seemed to know where he was going, so she trudged behind him, dodging the stumps of wood laying abandoned on the ground.
“So,” Aaron repeated, grinning slyly to himself. He knew how uncomfortable Sasha was, and he was milking it for all it was worth. “Hey, I just realized I didn’t get to catch your name! What is it, Awkward Princess?” He teased, rubbing his arm as Sasha punched him.
“Knight, actually. I’m not really the princess type. My name’s Sasha Knight.”
“Is that so? Well, when will you come and save me from the fire-breathing dragon? Since the roles have obviously been reversed, I’m guessing I’m now Princess Aaron.”
Sasha shook her head in disbelief and pushed forward, walking past him, but she couldn’t seem to keep the smile off her face.
“Knight, get back here. You know you don’t know where you’re going, and you also know you don’t want to get lost, here.” He said matter-of-factly. He knew he had won.
“God, how does your family put up with you?” Sasha answered irritatedly.
Aaron’s face fell. The mood had shifted into personal territory, and Sasha felt guilty, because even before he spoke, she knew what he was going to say – she had gone too far. “Uh – they don’t. Not anymore. I had a little brother and my mom and dad, but they were all killed two months ago by the Dark Ones.”
His distant eyes confirmed it, and Sasha gasped. “Crap. Crap, I’m so, so sorry! I had no idea… I really shouldn’t have said that. I’m so – ’’ She broke off as Aaron grabbed her wrist. She stared down at their hands in shock, and realizing, he dropped his hand abruptly. He held her gaze steadily, his cool green eyes looking into her.
“Sasha. Sasha, you didn’t know. You really need to stop saying sorry so much. It’s cool – don’t sweat it, and definitely don’t apologize.”
She flushed red and nodded speechlessly, turning away to continue walking. She inwardly chided herself for being such an embarrassment when an outstretching branch hit her in the face. She could have sworn she heard him chuckling behind her.
Finally, they reached another clearing where five black SUV’S stood, all the windows tinted. Sasha turned to Aaron in annoyance. “So you’re telling me these were here the whole time? We didn’t even need to walk!”
He shrugged in response, not replying with his usual witty remarks. He had said that she was forgiven, but he still seemed really shaken up about it. Sasha fell silent, understanding what he needed.
She looked ahead as a poised woman in her late thirties walked elegantly towards them, her long legs striding across the floor effortlessly. She was wearing the same black clothing as Aaron, jeans and a leather jacket. Her skin was fair and her hair dark, up in a tight chignon. Although she may have been intimidating to some, her expression was welcoming, a smile spreading across her face as two dimples appeared at the sides of her mouth. Her eyes were so dark a green that they could have been mistaken for black from a distance. Sasha was taken aback at the striking resemblance between her and Aaron, right from their looks to even the way they walked. He turned to her, his shoulders relaxing, as if he felt at ease in this lady’s presence.
“Sasha, this is my Aunt Dora, known as Instructor Pandora to most.” He wrapped his aunt in a hug, and Sasha realized how tall Aaron was; Pandora only reached up to his chin, despite being tall herself – the same height as Sasha.
“Hello there, darling! Aren’t you gorgeous? I’m sure my boy Aaron will have a hard time trying to focus on his training with you around, my dear.” She winked at Sasha, already cracking jokes. Sasha decided that she rather liked Pandora. The tips of Aaron’s ears turned pink as he nudged his aunt in protest. “Dora! Sorry about that, Sasha. My aunt just really likes to stick her nose into other people’s business. Don’t take it seriously.”
Sasha smiled, relieved to know that even a person as perfect, laid-back and cool as Aaron could experience humiliation, just like she herself did on a daily basis. A man approached them at that moment, grinning. He slung his arm lazily around Pandora’s waist, kissing the top of her head. “Very well said, Aaron. Oh, and hey, Sasha. We’ve been waiting for you to show up. I’m Lucas, by the way. Aaron’s uncle.”
He was tall, too, and very handsome for his age in his early forties, which made Sasha forget about worrying how he knew her name. He had dirty blonde hair that hung in his sky-blue eyes and a white, flashy smile. He was well-built, with visible muscles, but not in a bulky way. He had the same lanky frame as Aaron, even though they weren’t blood related. Sasha instantly knew why Dora and Lucas were so in love and why the family seemed so beautiful – they were perfect for each other, all with the same stigmatic energy and charm, which Aaron had noticeably picked up on, too. She wondered if his parents and sister used to be similar. It was their smiles that made them seem attractive, but even without them they were undoubtedly a stunning species of human beings.
“Hey, Lucas. Hey, Instructor Pandora.” Sasha greeted them politely, but Pandora waved her hand dismissively, saying, “Just call me Dora, sweetheart.” Sasha chuckled inwardly, knowing that she was the type of person who used nicknames like ‘darling,’ ‘dear,’ and ‘sweetheart’ a lot.
“Right, okay then. Let’s go! I desperately need food right now, and I’d rather not eat any of those suspicious-looking blueberries over there.” Dora laughed. Sasha couldn’t help but laugh along, too – Dora’s laugh was contagious.
As they settled into one of the SUV’S, the other ones followed, guarding their car on either side. Sasha had slumped into the backseat, head resting on her seat as the cool air from the AC dried the sweat on her skin. Aaron was sat next to her, his hood up again whilst he fell asleep. And, before she knew it, Sasha was sleeping too, her head nodding off to the comforting mumble of voices as Dora and Lucas chattered nonsensically.
Sasha’s eyes flew open as she gasped for air. Panicking, she sat up and discovered that she was sat on a wet patch of grass in the middle of a field. She brushed the grass off her stained jeans and stood up, her muscles aching as she stretched. She gazed around her, the sun shining too bright as it warmed her back. Confused and dazed, she wandered out of the field directly into a farmhouse. “Huh? How did I – ?” However, she didn’t get to reflect longer on how strange it was that the scene had changed so quickly, because something else had taken her by shock.
It wasn’t just any farmhouse. It was the farmhouse she had spent her whole childhood in – every lazy summer, every cozy winter, all the way up until she was 14. Her family had lived happily here, content in their routine lives, before they drastically moved to a large flat in New York. Although it was big enough for two families, it still seemed so minuscule compared to the farmhouse.
Now, Sasha was stood in the living room, a fire burning compellingly in the hearth next to her. The TV was playing a jolly Christmas movie as Sasha’s parents, and her little sister, Skylar, snuggled up together underneath a huge blanket they had gotten from the flea market three months ago. Sasha looked longingly at them, wondering where she was in the equation. Her mom noticed her standing and called out to her.
“Sasha! There you are! Come here, baby, it’s so cold!”
Giving in to her soothing voice, Sasha ran towards her mother and buried herself underneath the blanket, breathing in her mom-smell: jasmine perfume and laundry detergent. She knew it was too good to be true, but she savored it for as long as she could, watching the crystallized snowflakes falling softly onto the smothering cloth of snow that lay upon the grass.
She savored it, pretending she was 14 again, without any cares in the world. Skylar was only 2 at that time, and she gurgled adorably as her dad tickled her stomach. Suddenly, Sasha was holding a giant steaming mug of hot chocolate, and, realizing how thirsty she was, took a sip. Closing her eyes, she savored the flavor, too, as the velvety chocolate melted on her tongue, sweetening her mouth. In the distance, she heard her parents laughing at the TV, and her mom pulling her close, whispering, “I love you, Sasha.”
When she opened her eyes again, both her parents and her sister were lying dead and still on the ground outside, their dark blood a contrast to the purity of the white snow. Sasha screamed a blood-curdling scream, but no-one heard. The snow fell regardless, the world continued spinning, oblivious to her pain. Instead of looking beautiful as they had only a few minutes ago, the snowflakes were menacing, mocking her as they landed on her family’s dead bodies.
Sasha gasped as she felt someone slap her hard. Her cheek began to sting, and when she put her hand to it, she was surprised to feel that it was wet. She had been crying. That’s when the memories flooded back, of the sun, then the farmhouse, the snow, the hot chocolate, and finally, the blood that stained the whiteness of the floor, looking so wrong in the midst of such beauty. She opened her eyes, realizing it was just a dream, and then also remembering that her sister and parents were gone.
Lucas and Dora were looking down worriedly at her, their faces creasing up in concern. She was still in the car, that meant, so she sat up, plastering a smile on her face so they wouldn’t worry.
She felt a warm hand clasping hers, fingers entwined, and she found Aaron breathing hard. “Thank God, Sasha! Damn, we thought you were dying!” He looked genuinely scared for her, his green eyes full of agitation.
“No I – I’m okay. Really.”
“Really really? Because you screamed so loud we had to stop the car, darling! You nearly gave me a heart attack! And I’m sorry about the slap, honey, but we really did have to wake you up.” Dora apologized.
“No, I’m glad you did,” She replied quietly, an image of snow and blood flashing through her mind. She pushed it back and smiled wider, conscious that she looked like a Cheshire Cat. “But I really am okay, now. Just a bad dream.”
“If you say so. Let us know if anything else happens, okay?” Lucas rubbed her shoulder reassuringly and sat back in the driver’s seat. Sasha nodded as the car started up again, the other SUV’S following suit. She noticed that Aaron was still grabbing hold of her hand, and, seeing her looking, he grinned, rubbing his thumb hypnotically over her knuckle, something her dad used to do. He kept hold of it for the whole journey.
And… That’s it for now! I hope you enjoyed it! Be sure to comment what you think! For now, though, au revoir!
Have an amazing day, and Stay UniquelyYou! ♥