"By that sin fell the angels." - William Shakespeare.
How did I get here? That was the first thought that ran through my mind as I shoved my hands inside the pockets of an unfamiliar black coat and began to walk. My breath was visible underneath the street lamps which lit the damp cobbled street, but I didn’t feel the cold. I hadn’t been able to feel the cold since I turned twenty one.
My bangles chimed against each other, their raucous song unnerving in the dark, echoing into a deafening silence which unnerved me more. I tried to ignore my irrational fear of the dark and carried on walking further into the unknown, stopping myself from wondering what could be lurking in the shadows by humming my favourite lullaby from when I was a child, my bangles serving as instruments. My mother could always make the monsters of my imagination turn and flee for a while with that song.
I thought I had been wandering aimlessly until I came across large metal gates; the paint peeling and the metal corroded over time. I was outside a park. Something was luring me inside. Part of me wanted to turn back, but I had an impulse to go beyond the gates, to see what lay behind the trees or on the barren playground, to know what led me here and why my fear wasn’t dominant. I was terrified, but on I went, one foot in front of the other, my legs shaking, my eyes wide and my wings ready to carry me away should I be approached by danger; an old nemesis of mine.
As I walked deeper into the park, not daring to stray from the path, the street lamps started to flicker. I felt sick, sweat beginning to form on my brow. I began to hear faint footsteps behind me. I stopped dead in my tracks, and felt a warm breath right behind me. The creature came closer and suddenly its face was next to mine, its chin lightly brushing my shoulder.
I turned quickly and hissed, but there was nobody there. Paranoia began to flood through my veins, my eyes darting towards the source of any sound.
I could hear laughter coming from the trees, and then a figure stepped into the light.
This ‘creature’ was a man. He was well dressed; his face hidden by a top hat at an angle so the shadow cast by it would fall over his face. He was wearing a white shirt, black waistcoat and black trousers. It was almost... theatrical. As though this were a performance, a game maybe.
The light kept flickering, the pauses in between dark and light increasing until the glass shattered. I laughed. Yes, I was afraid, because this man seemed threatening and I had no idea where I was, but how could he, without wings or powers, beat someone like me?
Although danger loved to try and destroy me, it was also a large part of me. I was definitely dangerous. First of all, I could play with fire. I could feel a sort of electricity running through my body and the current flowed to my hands, which turned into nothing but bones under the blaze. It gave me a feeling of power. The fire never left a mark when it was gone.
There was nobody in front of me anymore.
I ran, as fast as I could, until I came to a fork in the path. I stopped. I could hear footsteps again. Only this time, they were coming towards me on one of the paths ahead of me. There were three, and I chose the one on the left, next to the lake; the moon’s reflection rippling on the surface. The footsteps grew nearer and nearer and nearer until... They stopped completely. I saw a shadow. It was still. I looked to my left. There was a bridge which stretched across the lake. I couldn’t see into the tunnel of the bridge, as it was concealed by painted wooden walls. The shadow was leading in to this bridge. I swallowed, my throat dry. I tiptoed, trying to avoid any fallen leaves. Our shadows were now crossing.
I moved quickly, my hands poised like weapons. There was nobody there. The shadow remained, the silhouette of the top hat as clear as the sky above my head. This was his shadow, so why wasn’t it with the man himself?
I heard the snap of a twig and the crunching of leaves behind me. I turned and he pounced on me, pinning me to the ground, his hands on my wrists, so I couldn’t burn him. The smell of smoke lingered on his clothes.
“Fooled you,” he whispered in my ear, his breath sickly sweet, and his voice familiar. “You see, a shadow is one’s soul and it was stripped away when I was given the gift of two faces, but it stays loyal, helping me to play my games.” He was completely mad. What did he mean by the gift of two faces?
|Alexander Vlahos||as Christian Sinclair|
|Lana Del Rey||as Aria Rose|
|Cara Delevingne||as Ivy Williams|
|Jessica Stam||as Leila Rose|
|Katie McGrath||as Ayalet Caesar|
|Erika Labanauskaite||as Hero Alexandria|