Authors Note: chapter numero uno! :) Even if you don't like my story please can you give a little advice on how to imrove, It would mean a lot =) Thanks

"I stand alone, a half blood amidst a war"

I Stand Alone

Chapter 1Questions and riddles

"Hey Granddad!" I called loudly, in case he was building again. For some unknown reason, my granddad loves to build. Chairs, tables, garden sheds, you name it and my granddad will build it.

I slipped my shoes off and looked in the hallway mirror. It was worse than I'd imagined and I cringed; no wonder I'd been called a freak. My face was pale, sweaty and covered in grime with a small blood smear across my left cheek due to a small cut across my cheekbone. My hair was, well, to be frank, it looked kind of like someone had backcombed a sheep and stuck it on my head. The only difference was that my hair was a deep brown colour and reached half way down my back. My eyes stood out on my face, bright green and shiny, they were the only clean looking thing about me.

I turned away from the mirror and walked down the small, narrow hallway and into the tiny, cramped kitchen which barely had room for the small, wooden, circular table that my granddad had made for us. I ran a hand through my hair, or rather attempted too; it got stuck. I yanked it free and winced a small knot of hair came with it. Yikes, I was going to need a bucket full of conditioner to get that dealt with.

"Granddad?" I called again as I came to the double French doors leading to the back garden which was, like the front, overgrown, but thankfully just with grass not thorns.

I slid the door open and heard a muffled Thump! Thump! Thump! as his hammer nailed down his new creation.

"Granddad!" I yelled again and then wished that kept my shoes on. Instead of going back into the hallway to get them – because I really couldn't be bothered – I pulled my multicoloured socks off and hopped through the damp, muddy, overgrown garden to find the shed where my granddad was working.

I opened the door and stepped inside. The shed was small, about 4x4m square and only had enough space for my granddads desk where he worked.

He stopped hammering and lifted up his big plastic goggles, "Riley, you're late, I didn't hear you come in."

I rolled my eyes, "I know granddad, I've calling you." I hopped from foot to foot trying to get feeling back in my numb feet. It was November after all; the ground had been cold.

My granddad looked me up and down and raised his eyebrows, "Good day at school?" I sighed, we'd had the same conversation every day after school for 12 years and always I had the same answer.

"So-so." But we both knew I was lying.

"Come," He gestured at the two beanbags in the corner of the shed. He'd always wanted to make us stools, but I insisted on beanbags because seriously, who doesn't love beanbags? "Sit."

I made the two strides to the beanbags and plopped myself down, studying my granddad. He was 62 years old but I'd bet 200 pounds, he was stronger and fitter than I was any day. He had thick black, greying hair and a kind, wrinkly face with a day's worth of stubble. His eyes, like mine, were a bright green and he often said we had the same eyes as my father, not that I ever knew him. I pushed thoughts away and focused back on my granddad, he wore old jeans –like always- and a red and blue checked shirt which was a size too big.

I smiled at him and he returned it. "in vestri own vicis parvulus" In your own time child. I translated the Latin as if it were my first language, which, in a way, it kind of was. My granddad had taught me Latin since before I can remember. I don't know why and I'd often told him that I didn't want to learn, but he'd just kept speaking to me Latin, refusing to speak English again until I agreed once more to learn. It was irritating, Latin was practically a dead language, hardly anyone in the world still used it and yet my granddad insisted on teaching me.

I nodded and focused on my bluish looking toes. Some might find the term insulting, but I knew my granddad meant well. I wiggled my toes and tried to decide where to begin.

"They followed me from school, Fai, Mira, Fearne, Isabelle, Lucy and Rosa." I swallowed before continuing "I... I got frustrated. You know hate to be followed." I stood up suddenly from the beanbag and began pacing. "Anyway, so I just stopped turned around and yelled 'what is your problem?' they'd laughed at me, the six of them all together and... man I was so angry!"

I stopped a second, breathing hard with the memory. My granddad waited patiently and I silently thanked him; he always knew when to ask questions and when to be quiet.

"I stormed up to Fai, their leader and went to punch her. I don't know what came over me, I mean; I'm not usually violent, right?" My granddad looked as if he was about to answer but I just continued right on; sometimes it's good to have a rant. "Anyway, my fist about a centimetre away from her face when it just stopped."

I was demonstrating; my left palm, Fai's stupidly pretty face and my right fist, well, my right fist.

"I tried to push, even pull it back but it was like an invisible force holding it in place. It started to hurt, like someone was squeezing my wrist, tighter and tighter. She smiled then. Fai. She laughed, right in my face and I was fuming. I could feel myself build start to shake slightly; felt the rage inside of me." I stopped pacing and faced my granddad, "I lashed out, kicked her hard. Right in the shin and she doubled over, screaming but I didn't care because my fist was free and the pressure had gone, although it still hurt." I paused and resumed pacing, no longer able to look my granddad in the eye, "I'd thought that was it, but then she stood up and the others all gathered in close and they said some words, I can't remember what, and then... I don't know what it was granddad, a... force? Something hit me, in the stomach and I flew through the air. I landed in the thorns, but I still heard them laughing at me. What was that granddad, what are they?"

I finally finished my rant and sank back into the beanbag. My granddad looked at me, "I think you know. Look in here," He gestured to his heart, "and you will find the answer."

I rolled my eyes again, typical; come to granddad looking for advice help and pity and instead, receive a cryptic lecture/life lesson. I really should have been expecting it.

I stood up to leave, but as I reached the handle granddad spoke once more, "Exsisto validus Riley" Be strong, "You are more powerful than you know and one day you'll learn, but for now, just be strong."

I reached for the door and pulled it open; I was assaulted by a strong burst of wind and just about to step into the gale (okay, so I may have been exaggerating a tadge..." when granddad added one last helpful piece of information to his already intellectually riveting piece of advice,

"And remember, nothing is impossible Riley, nothing."

"Thanks granddad." I said, not all too kindly and then ran out, slamming the door behind me.

It wasn't that I didn't love my granddad, of course I did, but man, all I wanted was some sympathy, maybe a bit of comforting, you know, normal family stuff but no, granddad had to go and give me a stupid lecture about some spiritual shit. I ripped open the French doors and then slid them shut behind me. Man, I wanted to punch something. I restrained myself and instead opened the basement door.

I descended the stairs and turned on the light. The basement was the biggest room in the whole house; open and about 10x15m we had filled it with mats, weights and a punching bag. Like I said, granddad was super fit. He trained every day and much like the Latin thing, he also trained me, in boxing, karate, Tai chi, weights, Bo staff fighting, basically, a lot of stuff. The thing is, I promised him that I'd only fight for self defence. That's why I don't just beat those six bitches up that stalk me around school. Well that and the fact that they have some wacky mojo on their side.

I walked over to the boxing gloves, took my muddy, ripped jeans off and removed my mud-caked, plain, navy t-shirt so that I stood in my bra and panties. It may seem weird to you, boxing in your underwear, but when you don't have many clothes and can't afford sports gear... well, let's just say it allows better movement that jeans.

I strapped the gloves on and started to hit the bag. Left... Right... Duck. I used a rhythmic routine that my granddad had once showed me and thought about what he had said.

After a while I stopped, breathing hard "Be strong Riley. You are more powerful than you know and one day you'll learn, but for now, just be strong." I imitated his words, mocking his 'all knowing' tone. "Oh year and, 'remember, nothing is impossible Riley, nothing."

I punched the bag once more, "Stupid..." Bang! "Fucking..." Bang! "riddles..."

Bang! Bang! Bang!

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