Despicable Me: Down the Bloodline 2
Okay, so I wasn't actually gonna do a sequel to this story, but I really have a good plotline that I want to explore, and I just couldn't help myself.
So, since this is a sequel, I do recommend that you read the original before this one. This series does contain an OC, who has a very extensive background and past, all of which you're going to need to know to understand this story.
If you've read the original, then the only thing you need to know before you read this one, is that it takes place around two months after the first.
I'm really excited about the plot I wanna explore this time around, so I'm unsure how long it will be. Chances are, we'll be looking at 75,000 words again, just like last time. But it could be longer, or it could be shorter, only time will tell.
I also noticed that I followed Jack's story way too much in the first one, so I will give each character a much more defined plotline this time. One character who I didn't explore that much before was Dru, so I'll try and fit him in some more.
Hope you guys enjoy. Let's go!
Chapter One -
The Best Brother Ever
Before today, I had found it comforting. It was the catalyst that numbed every bad thought. It allowed each one to be replaced with soothing ignorance. Unfortunately, that was about to be ruined.
Before today, I had found it relaxing. The pitter-patter would always remind me of the main positives I had in my life. Warmth. A roof over my head. Unfortunately, that was about to be ruined.
Before today, I had found it safe and secure. It acted as a portal to a separate dimension, where the problems of the outside world were forgotten. Unfortunately, that was about to be ruined.
Looking back, I should've seen it coming. As I stared at the dark environment outside of my bedroom window, the moon's light illuminating the trails of rainwater down the glass, I should've known what was about to happen.
Why did I trick myself into a false sense of security? WHY!? If I had just been smart and thought about it, or if I had just listened to the screaming voice at the back of my head, I wouldn't have this deep wound on an already stained mind. Maybe, I would be normal...
And then, they appeared. The pair of blinding lights. They travelled from the road onto the driveway, the oh-so-familiar sound of the car engine accompanying them. My heart raced. My muscles tensed. The lone, fearful tear trickled it's way down my cheek.
"Please..." I muttered under my racing breath, my voice quivering under the intense fright that plagued my mind. "Please god..."
The sound and light cut out at the exact same moment, forcing the air to thunder out of my lungs. The door opened, proceeded by the pounding of two hard, aggressive steps. I squinted my eyes, internally praying that the figure exiting the car belonged to that of someone else, but the obscuring darkness would not allow me any confirmation.
As the driveway pounded underfoot, my heart rate elevated. With every step, the sound inched closer. Closer and closer. Harder and harder. Each one sending another spark of fright through my spine.
And then, the front door slammed open, sending a violent shockwave through the structure of the house. I shrieked in fear before turning around and thundering forward, attempting to obscure myself within the darkness. I squatted down and hid behind my bed, tightly locking my eyes shut, hoping that he wouldn't see me.
The audible sounds of shouts could be heard from downstairs, followed by eerie silence. For around ten seconds, the atmosphere filled with a calm tranquility. Was he gone? Did he leave? Am I safe? I pondered each one of those questions in my mind. Unfortunately, each one was followed by the answer I didn't want to hear...
The bedroom door flung open, the light from the hallway immediately filling the room. I tried to keep myself hidden, but it was no use. The darkness was no longer there. The light was shining on me. I was visible.
He could see me...
He approached quickly. I had no time to think. His face was seething red with pure anger. His fists were clenched up in preparation for his next move. His eyes locked onto me with a dangerous glare.
And just before it began, he screamed my name.
Jack sat up quickly, jerking his head left and right as he flung his eyes open in surprise. He built himself up into a state of confusion as he spied no other figures in the room, up until the voice continued and indicated it's source.
"Morning!" A small, cute voice beamed from below. Jack immediately turned his gaze to look down, where he was met by the gleeful jumps of Agnes and the tired sulking of Edith. The wide smile drawn on Agnes's face displayed the excitement that had brewed in her mind.
"Oh. It's you two." He replied tiredly, wiping away the panicked sweat that had formed on his forehead.
"You were moaning in your sleep." Agnes stated, calming her giddy jumps slightly in order to speak coherently. "Were you having a nightmare?"
"I think so." Jack murmured. He continued to rub his head in frustration before transitioning his expression to inquisitive anger almost immediately. "Why did you wake me up!? You know I like sleep!"
"Well, so do I." Edith proclaimed unhappily, seeming in no mood to converse. The bags under her eyes suggested that she wasn't willingly awake. "But today is the day we're going to Agnes's friend's birthday party, remember?"
"Oh, please no..." Jack sulked, cocking his head back in dread. "Do I have to come!?"
"You promised!" Agnes exclaimed. Her joyful smile replaced itself with a sad frown as her jumping came to a complete halt. If Jack refused to come, she would be forced to hold her breath until he agreed. That was Agnes's favourite card to pull. It's a wonder how she hadn't booked herself a hospital trip at this point.
"Yep." Edith stated. "Remember? At dinner yesterday. Mom and Dad aren't coming cuz they're going on some mission, so you have to take us. Do you have like a two-second memory or something?"
"Shut up." Jack mumbled as he rubbed his tired eyes in irritation. The memory was now becoming clearer.
While he was eating at the dinner table with the whole family, Jack was trying his hardest to forget about a pounding headache that was causing him discomfort. So when Agnes started loudly yelping something about some birthday party, he absentmindedly agreed in order to get her to be quiet.
That was a mistake.
Jack gave a deep, tired sigh before continuing.
"When are we going?" He muttered, glancing at his pillow and imagining all the warm sleep he could be partaking in right now. Agnes peered over at the digital clock on the bedside table before responding.
"Fifteen minutes!?" Jack yelled, throwing off the covers. "You should've woken me up earlier!"
Edith rolled her eyes in exasperation as her brother leaped from the bed and darted over to his wardrobe. He picked out some cool looking clothes before shooting his gaze back at the girls.
"Go play somewhere or something." He said, gesturing his hands towards the doorway as he analyzed the clothes further. "I'll be down in a bit."
Agnes cheered happily, satisfied that Jack had agreed to come, before gleefully prancing out into the hallway. Edith followed slowly on behind with a tired trudge, resembling that of a zombie as she walked. Just before she disappeared out of his room, Jack moved his gaze away from his selected clothes and to his little sister.
"Edith?" He inquired, capturing her attention. The tomboy sighed vigorously before sluggishly peering back at her brother, giving him a look that was itching to sternly berate him. "Why did you agree to this? I thought you hated birthday parties."
"I don't hate birthday parties!" She exclaimed, shaking her head in disagreement. "I just don't like Agnes's friends. But when I heard they were having a bouncy castle, there was no way I was turning that down."
"Bouncy castle?" Jack questioned, twisting his face in confusion. "What's a bouncy castle?"
"You don't know what a bouncy castle is!?" She exclaimed. Jack shook his head, prompting Edith to sarcastically chuckle. "You must've lived such a terrible life!"
Edith immediately regretted her sentence, slightly widening her eyes and tensing up. She had just made a big mistake! Considering that Jack's entire childhood had been stolen from him, saying something like that was sure to cause extreme offense. But to her surprise, he shrugged nonchalantly and gave his clothes another deep glare.
"You're not wrong." He stated calmy. Edith innerly sighed with relief and soothed her nerves.
If anyone else had said that to him the way she did, then they were practically asking for a sharp punch to the nose. But since Jack loved Edith more than anything else in the world, there wasn't a thing she could say that would make him genuinely enraged.
"So...what is it then?" He asked, seeming to get slightly impatient.
"There's no point in explaining." She replied. "Just wait 'till you get on one. You'll never want to get off."
"If you say so." Jack said, narrowing his eyes at the clothes. "Do you think these look cool?"
"I dunno." She spoke, giving the black t-shirt and light blue jeans a quick glance before shrugging. "Why're you asking me for?"
"Well...I thought you were the expert on 'cool'." He said, winking at her playfully. Edith smirked as she nodded her head in agreement.
"Good point." She spoke. "I think they look alright."
"Nice." Jack proclaimed, putting the clothes down on the bed. "Now shoo! I gotta get changed."
Edith turned back towards the door, sighing tiredly again, before coming to a complete stop as her eyes laid upon the 75kg dumbbells placed beside the wardrobe. She grinned with excitement. Maybe if she did some lifting, she could sport some huge muscles and intimidate everyone around her, just like her brother did.
"Woah!" She proclaimed, shifting her gaze back at Jack and pointing at the dumbbells with a small hop. "Can I borrow those?"
Jack gave his sister a confused glare, using his inquisitive expression to convey his doubt.
"Are you serious?" He questioned, smirking humorously.
"Yeah!" Edith stated, jumping happily, oblivious to Jack's obvious doubtful tone. Jack chuckled, preparing to reject her proposition, before smiling menacingly and crossing his arms.
"Look, I'll tell you what." He spoke, his little sister inching forward slightly in anticipation. "If you can lift that dumbbell above your knee, I'll let you borrow them."
"Pfft...easy!" She exclaimed, moving over to the dumbbell in question. She clamped one hand onto the bar and attempted to lift it into the air, but it wouldn't budge. She then proceeded to grab the bar with both hands, straining every ounce of her strength, but again, it remained glued to the floor. She continued to strain for another few seconds, before letting go and gasping heavily, the fatigue burning in her arms.
"Well...uh...that was certainly a very good attempt," Jack spoke sarcastically, pulling a frown onto Edith's face. "But let me show you how to do it."
Jack grabbed it with one hand and lifted it above his head, grinning proudly and laughing mockingly as his sister turned away in a sulk.
"No need to show off..." She muttered in an aggressive tone. Jack was an incredibly cool and loving brother, and she wouldn't trade him in for the world, but sometimes his pride would get so frustrating. Yes, if she had muscles and if she could pack a punch like he could, she would act the same way, but it still annoyed her. Jack chuckled as he placed the dumbbell back down and ushered her out of the room.
"Now go away!" He instructed playfully, sticking out his tongue just before he closed the door behind her. He sighed tiredly as he moved over to the clothes laid out on the bed, his mind clouded by the memory of that disgusting nightmare.
"Again..." He muttered to himself, shaking his head angrily. "When will that dream just leave me alone?"
"Dis ees so boreeng!" Gru exclaimed, staring at the folder on the kitchen table, hoping that it would just disappear. Since being promoted to director of the AVL, Gru was forced to deal with a lot of tedious paperwork and assignments, as well as going out on the deadly missions. It was a recipe for constant weariness.
"It's not that much work, Gru." Lucy spoke as she sat beside her husband. She opened the folder and viewed the contents inside, being met by around fifty pieces of A4 paper. "Just a few forms and reports. You'll probably be done in twenty minutes, just in time to leave for that mission."
"Twenty meenutes! Yoo've gotta be keeding me!" Gru blurted, getting even more irritated. Twenty minutes is a long time when you're bored out of your mind. "Maybe dis director theeng eesn't for me..."
"But think of all the extra pay you're getting." Lucy spoke. "We can buy the girls practically anything they want for Christmas."
"Hmm..." Gru murmured, still seeming unconvinced as he took out the first form and read it. It was just some criminal report, detailing the acts and misdeeds of someone named 'Charles Pip'.
'What a fruity name...' Gru thought to himself. He read through the numbingly long pieces of information before being interrupted by the buzz of his mobile phone. With a sigh of exasperation, he reached down into his pocket and fished it out.
"Hello..." He muttered, a grievous frown dominating his face.
"Mr. Gru." The man on the other end spoke. "It's head office. Could you come over to the headquarters, please? We have a situation, and as the director, you must be here to deal with it."
"As always." Gru replied with a sharp roll of his eyes. "We'll be dere een a beet."
He hung up promptly and immediately began soothing his temple. He desperately needed a day off. Every time any villain fancied stealing a diamond or kidnapping an important person, Gru was forced to make his way over to the headquarters and talk to all the field agents, whether that be during the afternoon or late at night. It was becoming infuriating.
"Come on," Gru said, getting up from his seat and instructing his wife to follow. "We've got another situation."
"Oh, how I love a situation." Lucy replied, nodding and grinning. "I hope someone's kidnapped the president this time."
"Pfft...I doubt eet." Gru replied, walking out into the hallway. "Someone's probably just shopleefted a candy bar."
Lucy chuckled as the two made their way to the front door, where they met up with Jack and the three sisters. Agnes was still bouncing in excitement, Margo was preoccupied on her phone, and the other two looked tired and frustrated.
"Right, we'll be back een time for deener." Gru informed, directing his words at the teenager. "De party weel probably last around two hours, so yoo'll be back een de house een time for lunch. Yoo can make a sandweech, right?"
"No, no, I don't know how to put two pieces of bread together." Jack spoke angrily, rolling his eyes.
"Okay, okay, no need to get sarcastic." Gru replied. "I've left some money for a peeza just een case we're not back een time, but we should be."
"Can't we just have pizza anyway?" Margo asked, taking a second's break away from her phone.
"No, Margo." Gru stated. "We've already had peeza three times dis week, so preferably, I'd like sometheeng a leetle more healthy."
"Pfft...healthy." Jack murmured. "How stupid. Anything else?"
"Just have fun." Gru replied mockingly, sparking Jack's anger further. Two hours of screaming children was anything but fun.
"Bye girls!" Lucy cheered, pulling her three daughters in for a big hug. "Enjoy yourself at the party."
"Oh, I will!" Agnes replied, her excited jumps becoming more and more rapid and wild as time went on. "I'm gonna run and bounce and prance until I pass out!"
Everyone was unsure as to whether or not she was being serious, as knowing Agnes, it wouldn't be a shock if she was actually intending on doing so. The couple chuckled before exiting the house with a small wave. As soon as the door closed behind them, Jack turned to face the three girls with a long sigh of exasperation.
"Right then..." He muttered. "Let's just get this over with."
Gru and Lucy emerged from the glass elevator, transitioning into a room full of gloomy darkness. As their eyes focused in on their surroundings, a multitude of whiteboards, computers and important agents came into view.
This was the room used by the most important and highest ranked agents, where they discussed the next plan of action and how to go through with it. Before Gru had been promoted to director, the two didn't even know it existed.
"Ah, Gru." A man with a professional voice spoke, sporting a very smart black suit and white tie. "So nice to see you."
"Hello, Nigel." Gru responded tiredly. Nigel had been assigned to Gru as an assistant by the AVL head office, but he wasn't very much help when it came to completing missions and assignments. All he ever seemed to do was brief him on any problems, adding very little to the situation after doing so.
"How are we on this fine morning?" Nigel asked, grinding Gru's gears with another unnecessary pleasantry.
"Just great!" He snapped, anger overlaying his tone. He understood why Valerie was so enraged and demanding all the time. The workload and stress that came with being the director, slowly but surely, changed your attitude towards your work. "I'm guesseeng dat I haven't been called een here for a nice chat! What's goeeng on?"
"Meet Venin," Nigel spoke, gesturing his hands towards a wanted poster on the wall. Pictured on the front, was a man whose entire face was obscured by a black mask, except for his eyes and mouth. "A villain we've been trying to locate for seven years now. He and his wife used to go around committing various serious crimes, causing a lot of financial and physical damage as they did so. He went off the grid three years ago after his wife passed away, but we now have reason to believe that he has been involved in a multitude of mass-murders and abductions over the past month, and has slowly been transitioning back into villainy."
"Sounds like a lovely man." Gru stated sarcastically, eyeing up the picture. His eyes looked empty, as if he had no care for anything anymore. He remembered how he used to feel the same before adopting the girls. That was definitely an aspect of villainy he didn't miss.
"So...what do we need to do?" Lucy asked.
"I was...um...talking to the director." Nigel replied promptly, looking down on Lucy as if she were a peasant. Gru's frown immediately grew more aggressive, locking his fatal glare onto Nigel.
"Hey! Don't talk to my wife like dat!" He retorted, approaching him dangerously. "She may not be de director, but she's steel perfectly qualified to keeck your butt!"
Nigel took a step back, biting his upper lip in fear, before responding in a wary tone.
"Uh...I do apologize." He spoke. "That was definitely out of line. I take it back."
Lucy locked her arm around her husband's as she inched closer to him, sending him a warm thankful smile. Gru returned it, before snapping his gaze back onto Nigel, narrowing his eyes at him. If looks could kill, he wouldn't have lasted a second.
"Answer her question den!" He yelled.
"Oh, r-right..." Nigel stuttered, slightly startled by his demanding yelp. "We believe Venin is currently hiding somewhere in the city, but we're unsure as to where. Since he's been keeping an incredibly low profile, we can't track him using personal data records or DNA footprint, so unfortunately, we are forced to go with plan B."
"Just...look around." Nigel said with a shrug. Gru scoffed, crossing his arms and implanting yet another furious stare onto his assistant.
"Ees dis some sort of joke?" He asked bluntly, forcing a lump to form in Nigel's throat. "Yoo expect me to go out dere and tell all de agents to stroll around town and find some man, who we know notheeng about except dat he wears a mask, and breeng heem een?"
"Uh...well, when you put it like that-"
"Find me more leads, and den we'll talk!" Gru snapped, almost startling Nigel out of his skin. "And maybe dis time, eenstead of doeeng absolutely notheeng after dis conversation ends, yoo can actually help out and do some research on dis guy."
"Uh...well...I don't see why not." Nigel spoke weakly, shrinking down in himself.
"Good!" Gru stated loudly before turning around and making his way back to the glass elevator, ushering Lucy to follow on behind. "Come on Lucy. We've got a mission to complete. Good day Nigel."
"Um...yes...good day." He replied, gradually calming his intimidated nerves and sitting down in front of the nearest computer. He logged in using his credentials before staring at the screen in confusion. He had very little experience with computers.
"Research, research..." He muttered to himself, stroking his chin in contemplation. How did he go about doing research? Did he use the internet? For that matter, how do you use the internet? After a few seconds of uncertainty, he turned to face a few other important agents in the room and gave them a questioning expression.
"Does anyone know how to research?"
Jack, Margo, Edith and Agnes walked down the front path of a very neat looking house, the youngest of the four practically bouncing out of her own skin. The not-so-distant sounds of kids cheering and shouting could be heard, forcing Jack to wince in frustration. Oh, how much he hated kids! Well...except for his three little sisters. Them, he made an exception for.
It sounded like the party was being held in the backyard, which gave Jack at least some sort of comfort. If it was being held inside, escaping would be a lot more difficult. After reaching the front door, Jack gave it a few hard knocks that almost snapped it off its hinges, before a giddy blonde woman answered.
"Hello." She proclaimed, giving the four of them an incredibly irritating smile. "Oh, if it isn't the Gru family! How are we all?"
"Excited!" Agnes yelped joyfully, her eyes going wider than the sun. The blonde woman chuckled as she stepped out of the way and gestured down the hall.
"Just walk right-on through." She informed. "The party's out back."
"YAYYYYY!" Agnes cheered, bulleting down the hallway and disappearing completely out of sight. Margo laughed as she followed on behind, trying desperately to keep up with her little sister. Jack sighed deeply as he took a reluctant step into the house, Edith staying right beside him, before being immediately interrupted by the blonde woman.
"I don't believe we've met." She welcomed happily, catching Jack's attention with her high-pitched voice. "I'm Helen, Agnes's friend Trudy's mom. And who might you be?"
"Uh...I'm Jack," He replied warily, hoping to avoid a long conversation. "The brother."
"Brother?" She questioned. "I didn't realize they had a brother. Are you adopted just like them?"
Jack narrowed his eyes at the woman. How did she know all this information? Was she a spy? Did she have some sort of malicious motive? Before getting himself too carried away, something he had got used to doing as a former IVB agent, Jack calmed down and shook it off as her just being nosy. If she knew the girls beforehand, then knowing them, they probably told her every little detail about their lives.
"Look, it's a long story." He replied with a sigh, massaging his temple as he did so. Hopefully, that would be the end of this pointless conversation. How did he go from kidnapping and murdering people to forcing small talk with some annoying mother in the space of a few months? He was unsure as to which one he preferred.
"He's my long-lost brother." Edith perked up, hugging onto his leg as she spoke. Jack glared down at her angrily, innerly screaming for her to shut up, before Helen continued to converse.
"Really?" She questioned. "How did you get reunited?"
Yep. Definitely nosy.
"Again. Long story!" Jack replied sternly. "Look, Helen, could you do me a favour?"
"Oh. Of course!"
"Don't invite Agnes to another party!" He stated aggressively, causing Helen's eyes to widen in shock. He marched down the hallway, leaving her to stand beside the doorway with a deeply insulted expression, as Edith snickered and followed on behind.
The two met up with Margo by the steps on the back door. The three surveyed the scene outside, and to Jack's dismay, it was absolute chaos. There were kids everywhere, making the noise outside almost completely unbearable. There were around twelve different tables, each one littered with different variations of food, and at the end of the very long garden, was a weird looking structure that resembled some sort of castle.
"Is that a bouncy castle?" Jack asked, pointing at it.
"Yep." Edith replied with a nod.
"There isn't a chance on earth that I'm going anywhere near that...thing." He stated, cringing in disgust. He wouldn't have had much of a problem with it, if it wasn't for the fact that each tower of the castle was topped with a unicorn head. Edith was about to argue, but just as the words were on the tip of her tongue, her eyes came to a grinding halt on a certain figure.
"Oh no." She muttered, huffing in frustration. "Margo, look. It's that new kid from down the street."
She pointed over to a boy with brown hair, who wore a blue jumper, black jeans and red trainers. He was standing around on his own, staring at other groups of children, internally wishing he had the confidence to talk to them.
"So?" Margo asked.
"Ugh...he's so weird." Edith replied, glancing at him with a frown.
"How do you know?" Margo questioned disapprovingly. "Have you even talked to him?"
"Yeah, unfortunately." She argued. "He stuttered awkwardly the entire time. In the end, I just had to walk away from him."
"Strange." Jack agreed, eyeing up the boy in question. By the way that he was shaking a little, it was clear that he was incredibly anxious to be here. As he continued to analyze his surroundings, attempting to find the quickest escape route, Jack's attention was caught by something interesting. "Now, if you need me, I'll be suffocating myself in food."
Jack walked off, trying his hardest not to bump into any energetic kids, until he reached the nearest food table. There was such a huge selection upon it, he almost couldn't believe his own eyes. At least there was one positive about this negative situation...
Edith made her way over to the bouncy castle, where she observed three very young kids already upon it. Each one of them was clearly afraid of jumping too high, purely based on their small little hops. She smiled menacingly, as an evil plan began forming itself in her head. She kicked off her boots and climbed up onto it, immediately beginning to leap high into the air, knocking the other kids off their feet.
They all screamed and begged for her to stop, but with each plead, she found herself bouncing higher and higher. After twenty seconds of absolute torture for the three kids, one of the parents saw what was happening and ruined her fun.
"Hey, hey!" He yelled. "Don't bounce too high! You're scaring them!"
"Pfft...no I'm not. They're fine." Edith argued. She peered over at the kids, one of them almost at the point of tears, and couldn't hold back her malicious giggle.
"If you don't stop bouncing that high, I'll get Helen to take this thing down!" He blurted. The shade of red in his cheeks proved that he wasn't bluffing.
"Ugh...fine." Edith replied, slowly coming to a stop and crossing her arms in a sulk. After the parent strolled away, Edith turned to face the three kids and stuck out her tongue aggressively, which only seemed to add to their fear. As she climbed back down to the floor, Agnes came bounding over and caught her attention.
"Hey, Edith!" She yelped. "I made a friend! Meet Charlie!"
'Oh, great.' Edith thought to herself after laying her eyes upon the boy that was standing next to her. It was that awkward new kid. He was about a foot taller than Agnes, proving that he must be around Edith's age. He really must be desperate for friends if he's making one who's six-years-old.
"H-Hey, E-Edith." He stuttered, breaking into a fearful sweat as he gave her a small wave.
"Uh...hey." Edith replied, eyeing him up intensely. Judging on how quickly he turned his head away in fright, her glare must've been adding to his anxiety.
"What were you doing on the bouncy castle?" Agnes asked, cocking her head slightly. "I saw that man yell at you."
"I was 'bouncing too high'." Edith spoke angrily, impersonating his voice and making her little sister giggle. "This is lame. If I can't bounce high, what was the point in coming?"
"Y-yeah, t-this is kinda b-boring." Charlie spoke, trying his hardest to speak coherently. Edith decided that the best way to deal with him, was to just completely ignore him. Hopefully that way, he would get the message that he was way too weird to hang around with someone as cool as Edith.
She crossed her arms and turned her gaze around the garden. Margo was sitting down and texting someone on her phone, while Jack was stuffing his face with cupcakes and party sausages. There wasn't anything fun to do. Or more frustratingly, there wasn't anything menacing to do.
As she continued to observe her surroundings, her glare came to a halt upon a machine at the back of the garden. Her eyes widened and her mouth fell agape.
"Woahhhh!" She spoke, pointing at it excitedly. "It's one of those arcade boxing machines!"
She sprinted over, Agnes and Charlie following, until she was standing just in front of it. Three LED numbers displayed the high score, which was 901, and a large red button was placed below them. Edith didn't know how Helen had got this, but at that moment, she couldn't have cared less.
"That is so cool!" She exclaimed. "I wanna go!"
She slammed her palm on the red button, making the machine ding and the punching bag emerge from it's hiding spot. She peered up at the bag, readying herself to throw her punch, before realizing that she wasn't tall enough to reach it. If she jumped high enough, she could probably get a finger onto it, but you can't punch with a single finger.
"Oh come on!" She yelled angrily, crossing her arms once again and racking her mind. How could she make herself tall enough to reach it? Surely, there wasn't a way to do so. Then, the answer appeared.
"Jack!" She shouted, grasping her brother's attention away from the mini-sandwiches. "Come help me out!"
Jack turned to face the source of the voice, where his gaze was immediately caught by the boxing machine. A giddy smile transitioned onto his face as he observed it. He loved punching things, whether that be a machine or an annoying person. He sprinted over, almost knocking several children off their feet, before reaching the three kids, and more importantly, the boxing machine.
"No way!" He proclaimed. "That is so cool!"
"I know right!" Edith exclaimed. "Could you lift me up so I can reach it?"
"Yeah, sure." Jack said happily, moving down to pick her up before coming to a halt. "Actually...let Agnes have a go first."
"What!? No fair!" Edith argued.
"YAY!" Agnes cheered, putting her arms up with a gleeful cheer. As Edith crossed her arms and frowned at him, Jack kneeled down and whispered in her ear.
"If you let Agnes go first, you can show her up." He spoke quietly, giving her a wink. He was right. Agnes was sure to get a fairly low score, so it would seem a lot more impressive after she hit a massive one.
She nodded with a joyful smirk as Jack moved over and lifted Agnes into the air, where she slammed the bag with her palm. It inched backward, not fully reaching it's spot again, before displaying her score.
"Nice one Agnes!" Jack exclaimed, making her celebrate happily. The small crowd of children watching behind them gave a very weak clap, each one obviously unimpressed. Jack wanted to turn around and scold them all for not cheering massively for her, but decided that doing so would cause a lot of unnecessary problems.
"Okay, my turn!" Edith blurted, pressing the red button again. Jack lifted her up into the air, where she smashed her fist into the bag, sending it backward with a decent thump.
"Wow." Jack spoke with genuine shock. That score was very good, considering she was only nine-years-old. Once the score displayed itself, the crowd gave a loud clap. By the sounds of impressive mutters, Jack's plan had worked. Edith beamed proudly as her brother placed her back onto her feet, where she gave a bow and admired her impressive score.
"N-Nice one, E-Edith." Charlie muttered, staring at the ground nervously. Jack narrowed his eyes at the boy, confused as to why he was stuttering, before turning to face Edith once again.
"That's my sis." He said, giving her a high-five. She smiled massively. Maybe she didn't need the dumbbells. Maybe she was stronger than she thought. Jack ruffled the hair under her beanie, making her giggle, before gesturing towards the machine. "Would you...uh...mind pressing the button for me?"
Edith snapped out of her pride and obliged, making the bag reappear. Jack stared at it, concentrating on his target in deep thought, before lifting his fist and belting an incredibly powerful punch, making the bag fly back in a complete blur. The machine almost toppled over as the impact thundered through its workings, but just about stayed on its feet. The LED lights jittered and flickered before finally displaying his insane score.
Everyone, including Edith, dropped their mouths in shock. Nobody was expecting that. They wanted to clap and cheer, but they were just too amazed. A score like that was almost unbelievable.
"Aw, man." Jack sulked. "They should add a fourth digit to these things."
Finally, the garden erupted into a cacophony of claps and applauds. Jack turned and was a little surprised to see almost every single person in the entire garden looking back at him, either clapping or staring at him in disbelief. Jack put his fist in the air and celebrated. He didn't realize how much he loved people giving him their attention. It felt exhilarating.
"Y-Your brother i-is a-amazing!" Charlie exclaimed, directing his sentence to Edith, but avoiding eye contact with her. Edith turned away and attempted to ignore him again, but this time, her suspicions overcame and wouldn't leave her mind alone. What's up with this kid? She turned to face him with an aggressive glare, piercing into him with her tone.
"What's with the stuttering?" She asked bluntly. Charlie glanced at her for a moment with an expression that displayed his fear, before looking back down to the ground and muttering embarrassingly.
"I-I dunno." He said with a shrug. "I-I never usually s-stutter like t-this."
"So why are you stuttering now?" She continued, narrowing her eyes demandingly. Charlie looked like he wanted the ground to open up and swallow him.
"Is it because of Edith?" Margo asked suddenly, appearing from seemingly nowhere. Edith peered at her older sister in confusion, while Charlie transitioned to a mixed look of rage and unease.
"NO!" He yelped desperately, turning to face the bespectacled girl quickly. This conversation was steering in a bad direction, one of which he was very uncomfortable with. "L-Look, I'll s-see you l-later."
He quickly shuffled off, wanting to escape before he fainted out of total fright. He weaved through a multitude of lively children until he was completely sure he was out of sight.
"Well...that was weird." Jack stated. Margo watched the boy until he disappeared within the hordes of children, before turning to face her little sister and grinning mockingly. Edith met her gaze, and after a few seconds of silence, crossed her arms and frowned.
"What!?" She snapped.
"Oh, nothing..." She sang unconvincingly. "I'm sure you'll find out soon enough."
"What do you mean by that!?" Edith inquired. Instead of responding, Margo chuckled jokingly and wandered off, looking back at her with an irritating grin. Edith was beyond confused. Something was up with that boy, and she wasn't going to leave it until she found out what.
"Jack...?" Agnes asked suddenly, shrinking down in herself. "Could you come over to the bouncy castle with me?"
"No, no, no, no, no, no. A thousand times no!" Jack replied quickly, giving the castle a quick glance. "I ain't going anywhere near that...that...abomination."
"Please..." Agnes asked cutely, widening her eyes. Jack knew she was doing it on purpose. Jack knew she was trying to manipulate him. Jack knew he had to ignore her adorableness.
"Ugh...fine." He replied. Unfortunately, ignoring her adorableness was practically impossible. Agnes cheered and grabbed Jack's hand, pulling him towards the disgusting, unicorn castle thing. The closer they got, the more apprehensive he was becoming. This was not going to be a nice experience.
The two took off their shoes and climbed up onto the castle, the oldest sporting a frown of disapproval. Agnes began bouncing as high as she could, which wasn't particularly high, while Jack trod along the weird surface carefully. It was like walking on air.
"So...what do I do now?" He asked.
"Bounce!" Agnes exclaimed, her voice quivering as she flew up and down in the air. Jack continued to stand there in confusion, attempting to figure out a way to start bouncing, before Edith appeared from his left, flying through the air with a huge jump.
Jack wobbled with the bouncy castle as it shook under her massive leaps, until he eventually toppled to the ground. As he hit the bouncy surface, his body went flying up into the air, coming back down with another satisfying jolt.
"Woah!" He exclaimed happily. "This is awesome!"
"Told you." Edith proclaimed, as her brother got back on his feet. Just as he was about to join her in leaping into the air, that same parent came over and scolded the nine-year-old.
"What did I tell you earlier!?" He shouted. "Don't bounce that high! Are you deaf or something!?"
"Hey! Don't talk to my sister like that!" Jack demanded angrily, tensing his huge muscles and implanting an intimidating glare upon him. The man eyed him up in shock, clearly frightened by his expression, before stuttering with an insulted tone.
"Well...if you controlled her better, maybe I wouldn't have to!" He replied, trying to make himself look big and scary. He was failing. Jack scoffed with rage, clenching his fists slightly, before speaking low and dangerously.
"Did you see the score that I got on that machine earlier?" He asked, pointing over at the boxing machine. Judging on how his expression transcended into even more fear, the man clearly had done. Before he could respond, Jack smirked evilly and lowered his head. "Well...imagine a 999 right across your face!"
The man gulped and inched backward in terror. If his punch almost made a heavy machine topple to the ground, imagine what it could do to his head...
He scurried off promptly, almost tripping over his own feet in trepidation, before disappearing out of view. Jack grinned with satisfaction. He absolutely adored scaring people, especially when they deserved it. Feeling their smiles burrow into the back of his head, Jack turned and addressed his two little sisters.
"You don't have to say it...I'm the best brother ever!" He proclaimed. Edith rolled her eyes in exasperation, still wearing a vigorous smile, before getting back to bouncing as high as she could. Agnes giggled, however it was very faint over the sound of her older sister's huge leaps.
After taking in his victory, Jack joined Edith in bouncing hugely, admiring the intense rush of wind through his hair. It felt amazing. He had never felt so alive. He began uncontrollably laughing, the entire world around him seeming to fade out for a little while. Nothing mattered anymore. All that mattered was this feeling.
This feeling of being free.
It was like being on a drug. He never wanted to stop bouncing. The only desire he possessed, was to bounce higher. The only feeling he felt, was complete freedom. The only question he wanted answering, was how high he could get. Could he reach the sun? Possibly. I mean, when you're free, there is no limit to what you can do.
He felt his worry's drift away. He felt his frustration sooth into unbridled glee. He felt a small compartment of his brain open up. What was happening to him? Why did he feel like this? Why was all this bouncing so therapeutic? Considering this was a feeling he had never felt before, he should've been afraid, but at that moment, all he could feel was happiness.
The remainder of the time at the party was spent bouncing. He never intended on doing so for almost two hours, but it just happened. The world had felt so distant, that everyone around him seemed to completely disappear. People were probably speaking to him, asking him questions or starting general small talk, but there was no way he could respond. He was still unsure as to why he felt like this, but he did know one thing...
...he never wanted to stop feeling it.
Dru emerged from his bedroom and into the chaotic lab with a tired trudge. His expression was dominated by the surliest of frowns. The sounds of the minions communicating in their masses seemed frustratingly loud to him today, to the point where he almost wanted to scream at them.
He was fairly sure as to why he felt so grumpy. He had stayed up very late last night. Every time he felt his eyes burn that little more, he argued and kept himself awake, knowing that the next day would have to come that little bit quicker if he didn't.
He had to admit it at this point. Life was becoming boring. Villainy was becoming repetitive. A tedious routine was forming. He just needed a little bit of spice in his life. Something that would perk him back up and take him into the next day with that missing sense of pure adrenaline. He wasn't sure how to get it to return, and that's what was beginning to scare him.
"Mornin' Dru." Dr. Nefario greeted, turning away from several different beakers of unrecognizable liquid and to the blonde villain. "How are we?"
"Hmph..." Dru huffed, rubbing his forehead in hopes to rid his painful headache. "Not great."
"Good to hear." He responded sarcastically, turning back to the beakers. "Have we any news on the Rome heist then?"
"Oh, fudge to de heist!" Dru blurted as he slumped down onto the nearest chair. "I couldn't care less about dat stupeed painteeng anymore!"
He crossed his arms and sighed deeply. A few months ago, Dru would've relished the possibility of stealing the Madonna di Loreto from the Basilica of Sant'Agostino in Rome, and then demanding a hefty sum for its safe return. But now, it sounded boring. Nefario turned his head and narrowed his eyes at Dru, who was staring down at his feet in clear ire.
"What's up, lad?" He asked, still giving the beakers most of his attention. Dru, once again, rubbed his forehead with a sigh, seeming reluctant to talk.
"I dunno..." He muttered. "I guess I'm just bored of villainy. Eet's de same theeng everytime. Steal sometheeng, scare a load of people, demand a payoff and den rince and repeat. Eet's just becomeeng repetitive."
"Well, that's only a small part of villainy." Nefario stated as he poured the contents of one beaker into another, causing a faint gas cloud to erupt with a fizzle. "Maybe you should try giving the more...evil...route a spin."
"What do yoo mean by dat?" Dru inquired, perking his head in genuine intrigue.
"Well...villainy isn't just about stealing things." Nefario explained. "It's also about kidnapping people, scaring the masses with disgusting threats and causing insane amounts of damage. Maybe you could those parts a go."
"Hmm..." Dru spoke, rubbing his chin as he lifted his head into the air in contemplation. "Dat does sound...evil. But how would I go about doeeng dat?"
Timed to absolute perfection, the phone in the lab rang just as Dru finished his sentence. Nefario strolled over and took the phone from its holder on the wall, holding it to his ear.
"Hello?" He spoke. "Oh...um...yes, this is the right place. Uh, yes, of course."
Nefario held the phone towards Dru, making him widen his eyes and lift his head completely.
"It's for you."
Dru pranced over with a small squeal and took the phone out of the doctor's hand, immediately shoving it next to his ear. Something as small as a phone call counted as a slight tinge of spice to Dru.
"Hello!" He boomed.
"Am I speaking to...Dru?" A casual voice replied, skipping the introductions.
"Uh...yoo sure are!" Dru replied, finding himself grinning uncontrollably. "And who might yoo be?"
"You'll find that out soon enough." The voice replied, sparking confusion in Dru's mind, one of which he completely ignored. "I need you to answer a simple question for me. How would you like to be involved in one of the evilest schemes of all time?"
Dru almost fainted.
"U-Uh...y-yeah, s-sure!" He stuttered, violently shaking in excitement. "What's de plan?"
"We can discuss that later." The voice stated bluntly. "Just meet me and a few...associates...along the barren road beside Crestfall forest. Do you know where that is?"
"Uh..." Dru replied, rubbing the back of his neck awkwardly. He didn't have a clue where that was, but he really didn't want to pass up such an exciting opportunity. He racked his mind for a moment, up until his attention was caught by the super-computer room. That thing could help him find the forest in question. "Of course!"
"Good." The voice responded. By his tone, you could tell the man was extremely satisfied. "Be there at eleven o'clock tonight. Don't be late!"
Before he could respond, the voice transitioned to a long, irritating tone. He had hung up. Dru dropped the phone and began energetically prancing around the lab. This was it. The chance to add a twist to his life. The chance to get that feeling of adrenaline back. His mind was clouded by a buzz of excitement, giggling as he went around picking up different minions and squeezing them in a hug.
"So...what was that about?" Nefario asked. If his goggles weren't in the way, Dru would've seen the confusion flooded in his eyes.
"I, Dru, have been eenvited to participate een a villainous scheme." He proclaimed proudly. "De most evil villainous scheme dat has ever been perpetrated!"
A few minions gasped in shock as they listened profusely to Dru's announcement. The villain couldn't hold back his joyful grin at the sound of their reactions, only adding to his extreme excitement.
It was finally time to spice up his life.
As always, I really hope you enjoyed the first chapter.
If you did, please consider dropping a review. Reading what you think is one of the best things to do!