Post by Lucille Bluth on Jul 21, 2006 22:34:25 GMT -5
Marissa got owned and she so deserved it!
Other than that, aw Rose and C.J. :(. I feel so sorry for them, and I really do love how C.J. has grown up a little more and is now taking things a little more seriously. 'Cause now she has to play the big sister part that Tory played before her death.
Post by redemption on Jul 27, 2006 22:25:44 GMT -5
C.J.’s Choice: Chapter 2
Rose looked up as the door swung open and apprentices began streaming out of class, closing her Dragon Slaying for Dummies book and slipping it into her backpack for later. She quickly stood, scanning the crowd for C.J., and waving when she saw her. C.J. smiled and began weaving her way over to her sister.
Ever since Tory had died, Rose had started waiting outside C.J.’s classes. Trainee classes tended to end earlier then apprentice classes, and apprentices only stayed in one room anyway. Although Rose told herself the waiting was simply because she didn’t want to go back to an empty room, she knew deep down that the sight of C.J. coming to her, safe and unharmed, was a relief she needed to see every day.
C.J. felt herself bristling at her full name, bit her lip to control herself, and turned as Marissa shoved other apprentices aside to reach her. “What do you want, Marissa?” “It’s not me. Huntsman wants you.”
Marissa stalked past C.J. without another word. Rose frowned as she came to C.J.’s side. “What’s her problem?” “She’s probably still sore that I knocked her off her feet in training today.” And her shoulder still ached from when the other girl had smashed into her during a sparring session. C.J. rolled her shoulder to ease pain, wincing. “I guess I should go see what Uncle wants.” “Can I come?”
C.J. hesitated, then shook her head. “You shouldn’t, baby sister. Uncle hasn’t been in the best mood since… well, he’s not in a good mood. Just go back to the room and study, okay?”
Rose frowned in confusion as C.J. trotted down the hall to Huntsman’s office. What was wrong with tagging along? Tory had used to let her come along all the time before she died.
After much consideration, Rose jogged after her sister.
Over the past year, C.J. had kept two secrets from Rose.
The first secret was that she and Tory had purposely gone after Rose on her first solo mission. Rose had assumed that they had been patrolling during that time, and C.J. didn’t have the heart to tell her otherwise. The twelve-year-old had suffered enough as it was.
The second secret—a secret that weighed heavily on C.J.’s heart and mind—was that the Huntsman blamed Rose for Tory’s death.
C.J. knew that what had led to Tory’s death wasn’t Rose’s fault. Knowing Tory, if she had felt she had to die so that her sisters could live, she would have died willingly—and she had. But the Huntsman had never seen it that way. Unknown to Rose, she was skating on thin ice as far as her uncle was concerned, treading in deep water, and the only thing that stood between her being dragged under and her staying afloat was C.J.
C.J. wrapped her fingers around the knob, paused, and sighed. She closed her eyes.
No matter what, she wasn’t going to leave the Academy. Not even if the Huntsman threatened to exile her. She was all Rose had left.
Silently, she opened the door, closing it behind her with a soft click.
Rose paused when she heard the soft click of the door closing. She frowned, torn.
If the door was closed, that most likely meant there was a private conversation going on. But what harm would eavesdropping do? Tory had always said eavesdropping was a harmless way of finding out if people were talking about you behind your back.
So Rose saw absolutely no harm in pressing her ear to the door and listening. The voices were muffled, anyway.
After a moment, she hesitantly nudged the door open a crack and peeked cautiously inside.
C.J. stood silently in front of the Huntsman; after a moment, she hesitantly sat in the chair in front of his desk. Huntsman leaned back, observing her quietly for a moment.
“Crystal Jean, do you know why I’ve summoned you?” Don’t call me that, don’t call me that! Rose never called me that, Tory never called me that… “No, sir. I don’t.” “It has to do with your decision to stay here, at the Academy.”
The muscles in C.J.’s body went rigid, but she forced herself to sound relaxed. “We’ve already discussed this, Uncle. I’m not leaving the Academy until Rose graduates.” “Crystal Jean, you are not thinking clearly.” “What?”
Clearly off balanced, C.J. blinked. Huntsman stifled a sigh. “You and I both know there isn’t much keeping your sister in this Academy, child. You have turned your back on your Huntsclan loyalty for your kin, but in light of what led up to Victoria’s death…” “Uncle.” C.J.’s voice hardened. “I know what you think. I accept that. But don’t sit me down and tell me that you blame my little sister for what happened to Tory. You and I both know that Tory died because she felt she had to, not because of anything Rose did.” “Your sister…” “Was eleven years old, and was curious like she was supposed to be. She was young and had never faced a krylock in combat by herself before. You might blame her, Uncle, but you’re the one who thought she was ready to go out on a mission by herself!”
Huntsman’s eyes narrowed dangerously at that. C.J. bit her lip, bowing her head. “I’m sorry,” she murmured. “I shouldn’t have said that.”
For a moment there was a thick, heavy silence; then Huntsman sighed.
“Crystal Jean, the ground you’re walking on right now is just as shaky as the ground Rose is walking on. I want you away from her before it collapses beneath both of you.”
C.J. looked away, gazing silently for a moment at the wall. She closed her eyes, took a deep breath, and looked back at her uncle. When her eyes opened, they were steady and calm, and much older then a sixteen-year-old’s eyes were supposed to be.
“I’m sorry, Uncle.” Her voice was soft but firm. “I can’t leave Rose. If she’s going down, I’ll go down with her. If you’re planning on taking her down, you’ll have to take me down in her place. I won’t let her be hurt again.” “You are making a big mistake, Crystal Jean.”
C.J. said nothing, but her silence said more then words ever could. Huntsman sighed, resting a hand to his temple.
Neither of them saw the young girl with pale cheeks and shattered eyes peeking into the room through a small crack. After a moment, the door closed with a soft, inaudible click.
How do you do this? It starts off funny and sweet, then turns into this big great ball of evil! XD.
Ahhh man.. This is such a tough decision for CJ... I'm very curious to see what's gonna happen to her.. gosh.. poor Rose and C.J. .. *sigh* Excellent chapter. Very informative, along with great writing Really enjoyed it
Rose lay silently on her bed, her arm tucked beneath her head, gazing listlessly at the wall. There wasn’t so much a feeling of betrayal as there was shock.
The Huntsman blamed her for Tory’s death.
Silent tears welled in Rose’s eyes and rolled down her cheeks. How many times had C.J. told her not to blame herself? How many times had she awoken from a nightmare relieving that moment, or awoken in tears? She had lost count, but C.J. had always been there to hold her and assure her that she’d done nothing wrong.
But the Huntsman blamed her for Tory’s death.
It was a crushing blow to her already shattered confidence, but Rose fought back her tears.
She would talk to C.J. There was no reason to hide what she had heard. C.J. would help her, somehow.
She heard the soft creak as the door to her room swung open, but didn’t bother stirring. Then a voice slashed through the air like a knife, singsong and taunting.
“Huntsman’s gonna kick you out of the Huntsclan.” Marissa smirked, leaning against the doorframe. “I heard him. He’s gonna exile your stupid butt because you’re too much trouble.” “Go away, Marissa.” “It’s true. He is. And your sister isn’t going to do a thing about it, do you know that?” “That’s not true!”
Marissa took a few steps into the room, enjoying the exhilarating sense of power ripping through her veins.
“Wouldn’t you like to believe that? But that’s not the truth, is it? I bet Crystal Jean would be thrilled to have you gone. She probably just sees you as a nuisance that’s holding her back.” “Her name is C.J.! And she’s not like that!”
Loyal to the core, Rose sprang to her feet, ready to defend C.J.’s honor. Marissa laughed silkily. “Go ahead, trainee,” she murmured, and her eyes hardened.
Rational thought fled. A red haze of rage cloaked Rose’s mind, and without any warning she hurled herself at her tormentor.
Marissa’s widened only a heartbeat before Rose smashed into her, and the two girls went down in a tangled heap. Because the older girl had been unprepared for the attack despite her taunting, Rose managed to knock the wind out of her with a punch to the stomach before Marissa was able to twist her body and pin the younger girl beneath her.
Rose bucked beneath Marissa but could not shake her off; panicked, the younger girl rolled, and Marissa shrieked as she was pinned between the cold cement stone and Rose’s body. Rose managed to stagger to her feet, gasping. She was trembling, and blood trickled from a gash on her forehead, but she sprang willingly to meet Marissa as the older girl lunged for her.
The momentum of Marissa’s attack threw Rose back against the door; it flew open, and both girls tumbled into the hallway, still struggling. Dimly, Rose heard the cries of trainees and apprentices as they realized what was going on, but she ignored it, trying desperately to find an opening. Marissa’s hands closed around her throat, and Rose wedged her feet into the other girl’s belly, pushing with all her strength. Marissa stumbled back and Rose struggled into a sitting position, trembling with effort but ready to continue fighting.
Then she felt strong hands clamp around her arms like iron, and instinctively went still.
“What’s going on here?”
The rough voice of a hunter jolted Rose back to her senses. She was trembling and panting for breath, blood trickling down her forehead and her muscles aching as though she had gone ten rounds with the champ—and lost. She heard heavy footsteps against the stone and recognized the Huntsman’s authoritative voice.
“Take them both down to the medical ward,” he ordered. His gaze flicked only briefly over Marissa, but his eyes locked and held with Rose. She trembled inwardly but held her chin high, her eyes daring. He turned back to the other hunters.
“Make sure they are both cleaned up, then send them to their rooms. I’ll deal with them later.”
A quiet murmur of agreement came from the hunters, and Rose was hauled none-to-gently to her feet. She stumbled slightly but managed to fall to the hunter’s side, and after a moment she glanced over her shoulder.
That was when she saw C.J. standing next to the Huntsman, her face pale and her chocolate brown eyes wide and stricken.
End chapter 3
Yay for Rose giving Marissa the beating she deserved! But it looks like it just made things worse for C.J. ....
The combination of exhaustion and pain killers knocked Rose out; she only had the energy to collapse on her bed before sleep claimed her, and she dropped into oblivion like a stone. Time ceased to exist, and she slept without dreaming.
It was a gentle hand on her shoulder that revived her somewhat, and a soft voice. “Rose. Rose, come on.” There was a shuddering sob. “Baby sister, please. I don’t have much time.” Rose’s eyes slowly opened, still blurry from fatigue. “C.J.?”
She sat up slowly, resting a hand woozily to her temple before looking at her older sister through half-opened eyes. C.J. rested both hands on her sister’s shoulders, then hugged her; dimly, Rose realized she was trembling.
“Rose, listen to me. I may be gone, but you’re not alone, okay? I mean…” C.J. swore softly, miserably. “Damn it, Tory was always better at this then me.” She pulled away from her sister, looking over her shoulder at the sound of heavy footsteps. She bit her lip, before turning back to Rose, gently cupping the younger girl’s chin in her hand so blue eyes met brown ones.
“Remember this, Rose. No matter how hard life gets, never give up without a fight.”
C.J. pulled away, slowly rising, walking to the door. Rose watched her go, her mind still numbed by exhaustion. Already she could feel unconsciousness tugging at her brain, but she struggled to keep her eyes open. C.J. gave her a small, sad smile before turning away, pulling her mask on, and reaching for the Hunts-Staff she had left by the open door.
Before Rose fell back into darkness, the last thing she saw was her sister quietly closing the door behind her.
A pounding headache awoke Rose, and she jolted up with a yelp. She sat there for a moment, her head against her knees, before her mind clicked together the events that had happened only hours ago.
Rose sprang off the bed, staggering slightly, but threw the door open and ran into the hall, panic clawing at her heart. “C.J.! C.J.!”
She slowed after a few moments, confused and scared; out of the corner of her eye, she saw Marissa talking to another apprentice. Forgetting their earlier conflict, Rose turned to her, eyes stricken. “Where’s C.J.?” Marissa shrugged. “No one knows. Oh, and the Huntsman isn’t going to exile you after all.” “Not funny, Marissa!” “Who’s gonna stop me?” Marissa smirked. “Crystal Jean?”
The color drained from Rose’s face, and she stepped back as though she had been struck. Shaking her head, she turned and bolted for the Huntsman’s office, pushing the door open and stumbling to a halt.
The Huntsman stood silently facing the wall, his back to her. He didn’t turn at her entrance, barely even stirred.
“Where is she?” Her voice trembled, her hands clenched into fists. “What did you do to her?”
His head bowed slightly, but he said nothing. Tears welled in Rose’s eyes and rolled down her cheeks, and in the corner she saw the Huntsman’s Staff.
I watched you die I heard you cry every night in your sleep I was so young You should have known better then to lean on me You never thought of anyone else You just saw your pain And now I cry in the middle of the night For the same damn thing…
End chapter 4
Before everybody starts going, "OMFG THE HUNTSMAN KILLED C.J.!!!", please remember her current status in the story is missing, not dead.
ICHTHYANDER: ADJL scored 635K likes on Disney plus in India, which is more likes than Kim Possible, because Kim Possible has 250K likes! Note that Disney plus has recently appeared in India, namely, on April 3!
Apr 12, 2020 7:43:35 GMT -5