Chapter 17 - Threat

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I rolled my eyes at his continual mood swings before sculling the rest of my Tea.
Imelda's announcement of possibly going shopping had sparked excitement within me.

I stood and rinsed my mug as she had, hoping she hadn't just been saying it to stir Jake.

"Are you up for it?" Imelda beside me smiled as she dried up the mugs.

I was beyond excited that we were going out.
I needed to keep busy, I feared that staying indoors with the supernatural forces surrounding me would send me insane.

Imelda was a gorgeous woman, inside and out, she almost felt like an older sister.
It was like my real sister hadn't left, back to the way she used to be before all the negative influences dragged her down.
I just wanted familiarity.

As usual, my venture wouldn't be without a small taste of uneasiness.
Despite Jake's dismay at Imelda taking me out of the house, he had decided to come along, making us wait an extra twenty minutes for him to get ready and follow us out with a pout.

Imelda didn't seem bothered, almost like she was used to the testosterone fuelled dummy spits.

Jake had insisted on driving, which made it uncontrollably uncomfortable sitting in the back alone as Imelda sat silently up front with Jake.
I watched out the window at the passing rural houses on silent serene land, until the town began to grow more frequent with houses which became bigger, the land becoming smaller.
Within a painstakingly long ten minutes, we were in the heart of town.
Teenagers on bikes straddled around the neighbourhood with their hats on backwards, kicking tricks on the curbs of the streets. Mothers stood in their front gardens talking to their neighbours while screaming at their infant children pulling at the leaves and flowers decorating each yard beautifully.

I suddenly wished I was a part of one of the families, the normal families living normal lives. I would have liked to have been a teenager roaming the streets on a bike, or picking flowers in a yard while my mother yelled at me. Unfortunately, that wasn't the case, nor did I think it were remotely possible anytime soon at this point.

Once we pulled into the Mall car park, people flooded around, families, couples, friends, teenagers, all walked to and from their cars with carefree smiles.
I didn't even know what carefree meant anymore.

"It's a beautiful day" Imelda sighed as we exited the car

"It is" I agreed as I looked up at the clear blue skies, the bright sun and the slight breeze pushing through nearby palm trees

Imelda and I walked side by side towards the mall as Jake dragged his feet behind us

"Anything in particular you need?" Imelda asked as we entered the bustling shopping mall

"A couple of things" I thought aloud.
I needed a razor for my Yeti legs, stat.
Probably a jumper or two and oddly enough, I wanted some books.
I loved to read, and because of the sudden rush to leave my ransacked home, I had left my beloved collection behind. For all I knew, I was going to be stuck in Aldrek's home for who knew how long, and I didn't intend on sitting around twiddling my thumbs. Books kept me away from the harsh reality around me, and at a time like this, I needed that more than anything.

"Would it be weird to want to go to the book store first?" I asked Imelda, silently cringing at what I had expected to be a dumbfounded expression

Instead "Sure" Was all she answered with, not a glitch in her face appearing.

We pushed through crowds towards the right of the mall, men and teenage boys near stopping in their tracks to glance towards Imelda and spy a glimpse at the near perfect woman.
I felt like a complete disaster beside Imelda, not a single glance was given in my direction. Not that I wanted it to, but it still didn't make me feel any better.

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