The team thinks that they were in for a quiet relaxing afternoon to celebrate the group being back together. That all changes very quickly.
A knock resounded on his door.
“Come in,” Jay said leaning with his elbow on his bed and his shoulder blades against the wall. His legs were stretched out in front of him as Theresa walked through his door.
“Hey, Terri” Jay said sitting up leaning with just his back against the wall.
Theresa smiled and sat herself down at the foot of his bed and stretched out putting her legs over his.
Jay shut his eyes as he felt his entire body relax. Him and Theresa got along great, they could talk till the world turned upside down, or they could spend hours in each other’s company quiet.
Theresa smiled as she noticed how relaxed the leader was. Not wanting to disturb him, she knew how the past week or so had really stressed him out; she leaned over and picked up a book from Jay’s floor.
It was their English novel they were reading that semester, Othello. She opened it up to the second act and began to read it.
Neil, Odie and Herry sat in the living room playing video games. The guys were quiet to each other except for the random comment about where enemies were on the screen until Neil piped up.
“When was the last time it was this quiet?” he asked before resuming playing the game.
Herry and Odie paused to look at each other, “Not in ages, Neil why do you ask?” Odie finally responded.
“Then it won’t be quiet for long so I am going to catch up on my beauty sleep,” he responded putting his controller down and went to go to his room for a nap.
Odie and Herry looked at each other and shrugged, continuing on with their game.
Archie and Atlanta had finally ended their mad chase through New Olympia at the park.
Both had collapsed on a bench staring out towards the lake. Archie’s eyes flickered to her face as she stared out intently at the lake.
“Archie?” her voice sounding quiet and distracted.
“What is it Lan?” he asked looking at her.
“I get why you didn’t tell us all…But…”her voice trailed off
“Lannie, I was ashamed that’s why I didn’t tell you,” Archie answered knowing exactly where she was going with the topic.
“How many girls Archie?” she asked after a moment’s peace, still refusing to meet his eyes.
Archie stood up after a second or two and knelt in front of her. Taking her smaller hands in his he looked up at her, noticing that finally she was looking at him.
“7 or 8 girls…” Atlanta suddenly couldn’t meet his eyes, she was looking over her shoulder…She pulled her hands away from his and crossed her arms.
“Atlanta…” Archie put his hands on her knees to steady him, squatting in front of someone with a bad ankle made balancing very awkward. “Look at me please”
She still refused.
Archie sighed, “Lannie, I was young and a rebel. I hated my foster parents, I hated school there was a lot of things I didn’t like at that point in my life. I wanted to rebel, I was restless...It just happened. The Gods know how much I have regretted it ever since.” He reached for her hands find her arms loosened pulled them back towards him.
“Atlanta you mean a lot to me I don’t know what I wouldn’t have done without your friendship these past few months. I don’t mean to hurt you,” Archie explained though he really couldn’t understand what had her acting like this.
She finally met his eyes once more; her gray-green eyes were as hard as stone. Archie mentally was grateful he had both her small hands in his… His cheek was still smarting from that slap she gave him before.
As the two sat staring at each other; one with eyes like stone, the other questioning as a sound snapped beside them startling them up.
A lone howl echoed through the trees, which had Archie on high alert.
He grabbed her shoulders, “Run…Run hard and fast… Don’t look back.”
Atlanta paused looking at him.
He shoved her gently, “Go!”
She took off, she rounded a bend she noticed Archie took something out of his pocket and threw it in to the forest. The sounds stopped as sounds of something eating echoed in the park.
She stopped and waited for him to catch up.
Once he did both raced back towards the Brownstone.
The two of them raced in out of breath as Odie and Herry looked up from their game.
Noticing the sweat glistening on their heads, and the fear in Archie’s eyes they stood at once looking at them both.
“What the heck happened?” Odie asked looking at the two of them as Atlanta turned to Archie.
“He’s found me,” Archie muttered quietly.
“Well how did you beat him last time?” Herry’s voice piped up as Archie suddenly became focused on the ground.
“You need to be looking at them to die yourself as well as have them looking at you which is a common misconception about them. They are not like the Basilisks of old who must meet your eye, if you see their tail and they can see you…you die.”
“What did you throw in to the woods?” Atlanta asked.
“Pig’s liver…It draws them like nothing else. If they smell it miles away they will come find it. But it has to be removed from a pig before it becomes their favorite delicacy.” Archie responded collapsing on the couch surprised it took him that short of time to find him.
Atlanta, Odie and Herry looked at each other, their silence made Archie look up.
“Don’t worry Arch, I’ll start thinking of a way to get to the monster before he gets to us.” Odie responded bounding towards his basement bedroom.
Archie stared at the back of the retreating Odie.
“I don’t know if we can kill it…” Archie muttered to himself but Atlanta and Herry heard him just fine.
“For start maybe don’t carry pig’s liver in your pocket…” Atlanta interjected.
“It was in a lead box which stops the smell,” Archie said taking it out and showing it to Atlanta and Herry.
It was dark silver with a peacock on the top.
“An old lady gave it to me once, said it would save my life,” Archie said.
Herry and Atlanta looked at each other.
“Hera…” they both said look back at Archie as his eyes met theirs in complete understanding.
"We will talk to her at school tomorrow," Herry said clasping Archie on his shoulder making his knees buckle under the force. He then made his way to the kitchen to ask Athena when dinner was going to be ready.
Archie looked up at Atlanta. He placed his hand under her chin and studied her face peering up at him.
"I told you dont look back..." He said his hand dropping.
She responded with a smirk.