Before anyone asks, no. I didn't run out of the bookstore screaming for no good reason.
There was a giant spider on the book.
That is a good reason.
Luckily, I'd already made my purchase and was planning on leaving anyway.
I turned the corner, and saw a young woman leaning against a bench.
"Are you okay, miss?" I asked, walking up to her.
She turned to me and opened her eyes, which looked like they were glowing bright purple. She walked up to me, and then stumbled.
"S-sorry…" She said, brushing her black hair out of her face. "I, uh-!"
She took off down an alleyway without finishing the thought.
I shrugged, and ran after her. Mostly to figure out what just happened.
She ran about halfway, then turned to face me.
"Why are you following me?" She asked, glaring at me.
"Because I wanted to know what just happened." I said, "Are you okay?"
"I'm fine." She said, "I just, um,"
Another voice cut in. It sounded a little bit raspy, and echoed all around us.
"PARTIED A LITTLE TOO HARD, DID YOU?"
Both of us jumped, and started looking around.
"OH, DID I SCARE YOU? EVER SO SORRY ABOUT THAT."
A wisp of purple burst into existence, billowing up like a fire. It formed unto a long figure, like a large headed snake, with long noodle-like arms. For eyes, he had two glowing yellow ovals, and a yellow hole, forming a mouth below it. The hole forming the mouth appeared to have a single dull fang, and a column, separating it into two segments.
"HEY THERE, KIDDO! NICE TO FINALLY MEET YOU." He yelled, holding out a hand towards the woman. "CALL ME INSCRIBE. IT'S A PLEASURE TO MEET YOU FACE TO FACE."
"Wh-what do you mean?" She asked.
"I'VE BEEN WATCHING YOU FOR A WHILE. I SIMPLY HAVEN'T HAD ANY GOOD REASONS TO APPEAR TO YOU." He explained.
"Uh, what's going on?" I asked.
"WELL, AS YOU MAY BE ABLE TO GUESS, I'M A GHOST." He said, "YOUNG JAYDNE HERE HAS HAD AN… UNFORTUNATE TURN OF EVENTS."
"H-He's right." Jaydne said, "Why are you so interested?"
"Because I like to help people." I said.
"Well, it's… complicated." She said, starting to fidget with her hair.
"That's okay." I said.
"WHY DON'T WE GO SOMEWHERE A LITTLE MORE PRIVATE TO CHAT?" Inscribe suggested.
"My place is quite a ways away." I said.
"Mine too." Jaydne said.
"WELL, I COULD BRING YOU THERE QUICKLY, IF YOU WOULD JUST SIGN A CONTRACT." Inscribe offered, pulling an ancient-looking piece of paper out of the air. A glowing purple quill appeared, and Inscribe smiled sincerely. "DON'T WORRY ABOUT ANYTHING. THIS IS JUST A PERMISSION FORM, THAT ALLOWS ME TO BRING YOU TWO TO HIS HOUSE."
"Why his house?" Jaydne asked.
He turned to her, "WE WOULDN'T WANT TO RUN INTO ARIA, NOW WOULD WE? DO WE HAVE A DEAL OR WHAT?"
Jaydne looked at me. "It's your choice."
I took the quill, and signed my name.
The ink glowed purple, and faded to black as it dried.
Jaydne signed her name in neat script, and let go of the quill.
"EXCELLENT! NOW, AWAY WE GO!" Inscribe bellowed, swirling his long, snakelike body around us, until everything looked like purple smoke.
I felt off balance, and floaty for a moment, and then I was standing again, and Inscribe pulled away.
Sure enough, we were standing on the solid wooden floor of my apartment.
"ONE LAST THING…" Inscribe said, grabbing another contract. "IT'D BE BEST IF YOU WERE TO SIGN A NON-DISCLOSURE AGREEMENT."
"A what?" I asked, still disoriented from traveling.
"SIGNING THIS CONTRACT WILL PREVENT YOU FROM DISCUSSING ANY SENSITIVE MATTERS THAT MISS NOIR TELLS YOU." Inscribe says calmly.
"What's this fine print say?" I asked.
"LEGAL JARGON." Inscribe said, making a "blah" face. "IF I DON'T PUT IN ALL THAT, THEN PEOPLE TEND TO TRY TO TAKE ME TO COURT OVER IT WHEN THEY WANT AN OUT…"
I nodded, and then signed the paper.
The ink glowed purple, and faded to black as it dried.
I set down the quill, and it and the contract vanished again.
Suddenly, I felt something painfully rising out of my throat. Shredding my throat, like vomit made of glass.
I coughed, and a dark mist emerged. Inscribe took it in his talons, and held it for a moment, before pinching it. I tried to say something, but no noise came out. As if he'd stolen my voice.
He let go of the mist, and it began to glow a soft blue color, before floating towards my mouth again. I involuntarily opened my mouth, and the mist flowed down my throat, soothing the pain.
"I APOLOGIZE," Inscribe said, "FOR NOT WARNING YOU ABOUT THAT. I ASSUMED YOU WOULDN'T PANIC. I'LL KEEP THAT IN MIND FOR FUTURE REFERENCE."
"Th-thanks…" I said, placing a hand on my throat.
"I suppose I should explain things now, huh?" Jaydne said.
I nodded, and Inscribe took a seat on my sofa.
"My older sister, Aria, has always been a little… obsessed." Jaydne began, "She's always thought that she needed to be better. She has this delusion that she was an angel, fallen to a dirty, evil world.
"Four days ago, however, she found something. It was a set of ancient texts, from a civilization lost to time, that detailed the transfer of darkness between hearts. You see, a human usually has an equal amount of light and dark inside of them. Equal opportunities for good and evil. Aria thought that to return to the heavens, she needed to have absolutely no darkness in her heart.
"So she dumped it all into mine, overpowering my heart with darkness." She said, sighing. "Turning me into… something. Some sort of demon, I'd think."
"IT'S CALLED A YAMI. A HUMAN WITH SO MUCH DARKNESS AND EMOTION WITHIN THEM THAT THEY BEGIN TO EMULATE THE CHARACTERISTICS OF AN AKUMA." Inscribe explains, "BUT THE TROUBLE IS, AFTER A FEW WEEKS, YOU'LL BEGIN TO DISSOLVE."
"I-it's been about four days…" Jaydne said, "So how long do I have?"
"WHEN YOUR EYES START TURNING GRAY, AND YOU FEEL FLOATY AND INSUBSTANTIAL, IT'S YOUR FINAL DAY."
"I think I might be able to help, actually." I said, taking out my book. "Just give me a little bit, okay?
Here we are, Chapter 2! This story has three different sections of it, but don't worry - they'll intersect soon enough. Thank you for reading this.
Have a good day everyone!