Chapter 15

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 Dust lay over every surface of the ancient home like scattered grey snow. The roof starting to sag in the middle, and the boarded-up windows blocking any source of light from entering. Cobwebs lazily hang off the walls, along with the tattered wallpaper slowly fading after years of neglect.

Landon Cross found solitude in the tattered home, fleeing from the ones that are hunting him down, like he is their prey. He knew they would eventually come for him, he only wished he had more time.

He tried to shield himself in the corner of the dingy room, puffs of shallow breath threading out his lips. He retreated in himself as he heard footsteps on the rickety flooring, a menacing voice calling out his name.

"I know you're in here." The voice called out.

His brain unintentionally shut down, his forehead glistening with sweat as the footsteps become more distinct. The footsteps echoed off the walls, the approaching figure making no attempt to remain subtle.

Adrenaline flooded through Landon's system, his heart pumping so rapidly it felt like it may burst. He knows he is too weak, too injured, to fight back and all that was coursing through his mind is his imminent death.

He was taken by surprise by the sound of glass shattering and an unmistakable groan echoing through the abandoned building. The sound of skin against skin was heard, like someone had just delivered a brutal punch before he was greeted by an ominous silence.

"Who is there?" He heard a different voice call out, a more feminine tone to the deep and guttural voice of the person adamant on killing him.

He had a feeling in his gut to remain hidden in the shadows, but he also felt that this stranger could help him escape the dangers still lurking in the shadows, waiting for the right moment to take him.

He placed a shaky hand on the wall and used it as support to help him stand up, the incessant pain in his leg becoming more prominent causing his groan to echo. He knew the unknown person heard him as the footsteps approached, but he did not have any strength to escape even if he wanted to.

The figure lurked in the shadows a moment longer until they walked forward granting Landon the opportunity to catch a glimpse of the mystery person, being taken by surprise as the girl's eyes widened and gasped out his name.

"Landon." The familiar face spoke with wide eyes.

"Ember."

****************

Hazel was greeted with the bare, cream covered walls and the stench of disinfectant wafting through the air. Her eyelids threatening to close again from exhaustion even though she has already been asleep for hours.

She winced at the unbearable pain in her stomach, her skin seemingly pale and lifeless. She tried to sit up, but bit her lip to stop from crying out, the pain lacing through her body so profusely she started to see spots.

"Hey, take it easy." A soothing voice droned through her ears.

"Jared." She spoke once she put a face to the voice, unable to open her eyes or even move her arms.

She attempted to move her arms, but they are impossibly numb.

"I'm here." He soothed gripping her hand, his warm hands instantly soaring into her ice-cold ones and she welcomed the warmth.

She gently fluttered her eyes, wincing at the intense brightness from the hospital light

She noticed movement from the corner of her eye, shocked to see Shaun's slumped form awkwardly leaning against the pasty hospital room wall, fingers pressed into the skin of his forearms.

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