I Know Your Secret: Foretold
Valkyrie Cain felt like crap. She didn't have to feel like crap of course, but discovering you were likely going to destroy the world could put a girl in a bad position where feeling good in any way shape or form was not something she could stomach easily.
She could still smile, pull out the sarcasm and all that, but left to her own thoughts she annoyingly wallowed too much. Or brooded, so maybe she could wear a bat costume. Though, thinking that she did wear too much black.
Valkyrie looked to her reflection. The annoying reflection (of her) that Valkyrie was certain was broken and maybe even messed up in the head. The thing was hiding things from her. It had just stepped out of the mirror to take her place with her parents so Valkyrie could leave the house with no one the wiser.
At barely sixteen, Valkyrie was tall for a girl her age with long silky dark brown hair and cool dark eyes. She would say she was pretty. Though, she would have been more into herself if she hadn't been having late nights and bad dreams. So Valkyrie and her reflection: Reflection? Both looked tired with some dark marks under their eyes.
Valkyrie wasn't sure she cared what her reflection was keeping from her any-more. Did it even matter. If something happened to Valkyrie, she knew this thing; this shadow of her non-magical self would stay – and keep her life. Hopefully if that did happen, no one would ever need know that Valkyrie Cain – or Stephanie Edgley (her given name) was gone.
"I'm going out," Valkyrie said to her Reflection as she started stripping out of her PJ's. "You have to get ready for school," she added as she turned to see her reflection already stripped and she paused as she checked out her own nude body on her Reflection.
Valkyrie was slim with some nice tits. They weren't very big she would concede, but she liked them; they were plenty big enough for her, in her eyes. It meant they wouldn't weigh her down when she was fighting some new arsehole bent on murdering or enslaving the Mortals.
She had some dark hairs between her legs, and smooth everywhere else; her muscles taught and strong curving down to her firm arse. Her skin was likely too pale even without her late nights and fretful sleep, but some people could pull that off, and she noted she did as she was looking so hot and sexy in the nude.
"Are you going to molest me?" Valkyrie's Reflection asked suddenly as she stood straight, totally nude and unashamed as they were technically kind of the same person.
Valkyrie stared for a few moments more while she had automatically pulled on a pair of white knickers and a matching bra, as it was taking a little while for her to get over herself and take in what her Reflection just said.
Shaking her head clear Valkyrie realised she was really staring with way too much intensity at her naked Reflection. That was weird, but she caught herself licking her lips as while staring, which was weirder.
"No. Of course not," Valkyrie finally replied coldly as her cheeks lit up red. "And even if I wanted to do something like that. Your body… its mine. You belong to me. I can touch you wherever I want and whenever I want."
Surprisingly the Reflection smiled a little. "Of course. I do know you. You've thought about it. Quite a lot. And I'm you. So I suppose I've thought about it too. But that is rather egotistical of you to fancy yourself so much you want to… literally fuck yourself. To take your own virginity."
Valkyrie grit her teeth in anger. "Just shut up!" she hissed through her teeth, which caused her Irish accent to thicken slightly. "I'm-I'm not that bad. Just get dressed," she said as she tiredly pulled on her socks followed by black armoured trousers, tunic, and leather coat that hung to her knees while the Reflection pulled on her underwear and school uniform.
"Do you think she'll beat her?" the Reflection asked, once again startling Valkyrie. But at least the Reflection was fully dressed when Valkyrie turned back towards her, frowning. "This other girl from the visions. The magician who faces 'her'."
"I don't know," Valkyrie replied while shrugging. "You know what I do, and we never get a good look at her. But Darquesse seems to actually… I don't know. Like her."
"Maybe you could make Darquesse fall in love with you," the Reflection suddenly said with a nonchalant expression. "After all; she is you; and you already love yourself, so why wouldn't she be the same."
Valkyrie glared for a moment before she realised it wasn't doing anything so sighed tiredly. "One day I am just going to spank you and never let you back into the mirror so I don't have to keep that memory."
"You would enjoy that though, wouldn't you?" the Reflection asked, but didn't wait for an answer. "Its why none of your relationships can last. They all think its because nobody can outmatch Skulduggery. They all think that you're in love with a living skeleton, but I know the truth. Its not him they're competing with. Its you. Those boys. Fletcher. The vampire. They couldn't have you. Because you want yourself all to yourself. You want me... or maybe… just want Darquesse!"
Valkyrie moved fast. She grabbed her Reflection by the throat and pushed her up against the door. "Shut up," Valkyrie said coldly, hissing out the words to her Reflection, and for a moment she saw fear in her Reflections expression.
Loosening her grip, Valkyrie was surprised and confused. Her Reflection shouldn't be able to fear her. Shouldn't be able to talk back or push her buttons. The Reflection shouldn't be able to piss her off like this. It should be a puppet to take orders and obey.
Valkyrie hesitated for a moment too long wondering whether it was possible that her Reflection wasn't normal any more. After the torture she suffered in that other dimension and when she was actually shot dead.
She got her answer when she got her own left fist to her face. Valkyrie's Reflection punched her in the face and she stumbled backwards and her lip split as she crashed into her wardrobe, shattering the mirror. The glass pieces fell down around them and the Reflection jumped on top of Valkyrie and they started laying in blows on each other, scrambling around in anger, nicking their flesh on the mirrored shards before they stopped suddenly with twin looks of fear.
It was a knock on the door. "Stephanie!?" It was Valkyrie's mum.
"Yes." They both answered at the same time. They were within each others arms on the floor bruised and bleeding; their identical faces pale and their lips close as they turned to each other and glared the unspoken agreement that they should answer. Both accusing each other of speaking when they shouldn't have.
"Umm… are you okay in there?" their mother replied through the door as she tried the handle but both Valkyrie and Reflection sighed in relief as the door was locked.
Valkyrie and her Reflection turned to look at each other again. Their noses brushed as they breathed deeply while trying to calm down with the Reflection on top of Valkyrie; their bodies flush with each other as they had another silent argument with glares and silent snarls.
"I'm fine." Both Valkyrie and Reflection replied in such perfect sync it would have been hard to distinguish two different people speaking. But neither girl looked away from the other as they continued their glaring match.
"Are you sure?"
"Yes," they replied sharply with impatience.
"Okay," Valkyrie's mother said uncertainly. "Well hurry up and get breakfast; you wont have time if you don't hurry."
"Okay," Valkyrie and Reflection replied as they continued glaring at each other as they listen to their mother hurrying away down the stairs.
"Now what?" Valkyrie asked with a tired sigh that seemed to deflate the fight out of both of them as they lay in a tangle together on the broken glass of the mirror on the floor by the wardrobe, staring into each others eyes. But thankfully Valkyrie's armoured clothes kept the glass from cutting into her any further.
"I-I-I want to live," the Reflection suddenly stuttered out as she looked at the shattered glass, lifting a tiny piece to show, Valkyrie. She sat up as they both stared at the piece of reflective glass and sat on Valkyrie's lap, kneeling either side of her waist while Valkyrie continued lying back.
Valkyrie's eyes softened as she looked at her Reflection's expression. "So do I," she replied as she reached up and plucked the piece of mirror from her Reflections fingers and threw it to the side. "I'm scared she'll completely take over. But even more. I'm scared I'll like it. That I wont fight. That..."
She paused speaking as her Reflection leaned down and gently kissed Valkyrie on the lips. Their eyes drifted closed as they kissed for several moments before the Reflection pulled back with a gentle smile, stroking Valkyrie's cheek.
"We… maybe we… you don't have to be alone," the Reflection said softly. "I know who I am. I am Stephanie Edgley. Its nice to meet you Valkyrie Cain… Big Sister," she said seeming to add the sister part as a correction.
Valkyrie just stared for a few too many moments as her Reflection. Stephanie offered her right hand to shake before she took the offered hand and burst out laughing. It only took a second more for Stephanie to join in the laughter, and it took a few too many minutes to calm themselves.
"Kissing myself wasn't as weird as I thought it would be," Valkyrie said with a few chuckles. "But, Big Sister?" she asked with raised eyebrows while Stephanie blushed. It would take some time getting used to the thought of her Reflection as being, possibly being her Given Name. If her True Name could have a mind of its own; why not her Given Name too. "Does that mean she's our Little Sister too? And come to think of it why am I the Big Sister?"
Stephanie shrugged. "You were still the Stephanie Edgley before me," she replied tiredly. "But I think we both need to clean up and get to where we need to be. You off doing the whole adventuring thing and me… school. Wow I'm boring."
"Does this mean I have to start helping with school stuff too?" Valkyrie asked dubiously as she didn't like school, but then she wasn't sure anyone really liked school; it was hard and boring, but at least it was a lot safer than Valkyrie's job.
Stephanie climbed to her feet and helped pull Valkyrie up. They were both sore, rubbing a few bruises and rubbing sore muscles while clinking their aching bones into place.
"Well; I think you'll be okay," Stephanie said with a shrug. "But what happens from here?"
"P-protect my… our family," Valkyrie said after a few minutes thought. "Go to school and be the Stephanie Edgley I can't be any more. You're built from magic… so maybe… you'll probably live longer than normal Mortals. I don't think anyone's Reflection has ever gained its own will and life before so this is all new territory for anyone so lets keep this quiet for now. For all we know you might even gain magical abilities."
"I- when I was keeping memories and thoughts from you," Stephanie replied as she finally admitting the truth. "I thought about that – a lot. I'm fine not having magic as long as I can live some kind of life."
"Its yours," Valkyrie said as she looked over at her – their bed. "But maybe you can convince mum and dad to buy us a bigger bed, so I can at least spend some time here too, and have a comfortable place to stay."
Stephanie smirked. "Trying to sleep with yourself," she said shaking her head. "I know we're hot and awesome and all that but this has to be some kind of mental disorder. Do you think there's a name for it. Maybe you could ask China as she's in love with herself. And she's old enough that she may have seen a psychologist at least once."
"Wow," Valkyrie said, deadpan. "No wonder the bad guys all think I'm a bigger arsehole than them."
Stephanie shrugged. "I have tried to warn you, but you never wanted to listen."
Valkyrie didn't have a chance to reply as they heard their mother calling her – them – well Stephanie. "You better get your book-bag and coat before you're late; it looks kind of cold out today," she said while looking out of the window as it was cloudy and grey.
"Yeah," Stephanie said as she looked to. "So… I have the boring life and you get to be the super sexy Detective Valkyrie Cain!?"
"Don't knock boring," Valkyrie agreed as she turned back to Stephanie as she was pulling on her coat and fetched her book-bag. "I wouldn't say no to a few boring days of no one trying to kill me or take over the world or something equally ridiculous. But just make sure you stay out of sight of mage, just in case they mistake you for me."
"Okay," Stephanie said. "Thanks," she added as she hugged onto Valkyrie. It felt strange for a moment before Valkyrie hugged back and it just fit.
They pulled back from their hug before Stephanie smirked and quickly gave Valkyrie a kiss on the lips. "Call me if you need anything," she said with a wink as she opened the bedroom door. "And I'll take care of our family… and the baby."
Valkyrie smiled slightly as Stephanie closed the door behind her. Their mother was only a month or two pregnant and they were both already worrying. In fact, Valkyrie would have to ask their mother how long she had been pregnant when she got a chance. She had been losing track of time, which was hindered upon more than normal with both her memories and the memories from Stephanie when she was just a Reflection.
Sometimes Valkyrie had felt like she had lived two days at a time, or longer when she was away for longer periods of time.
Sighing Valkyrie looked around at the mess and thought about leaving it to Stephanie to clean up, but Valkyrie knew she kind of started it, and she didn't need her mother coming in while Stephanie was at school. Therefore, Valkyrie spent several minutes clearing away the glass and putting it in the bin before leaving a post-it note on the wardrobe for herself (Stephanie) to vacuum once she got home.
Pushing her hair back, Valkyrie grabbed a hair-tie, and pulled her hair back into a ponytail before grabbing a cold black ring from her pocket and placing it on her left-third finger. She felt the cold surge of power curl around her hand for a moment as black energy; shadows pooled around for a few moments before it pulled back into the ring.
Valkyrie frowned as she felt like she was forgetting something as she pulled on her black leather boots. However, she shrugged as she finished the last fastening and pulled open her window. Slipping out onto the window ledge she closed and locked the window before jumping towards the ground.
With a quick sweeping push of her hands, the wind blast up with interconnected particles, and she slowed to a stop just before her feet hit the ground.
It only took Valkyrie a few minutes to rush to her meeting point and slide into the passenger seat of the large black Bentley.
His voice was like smooth velvet as the driver spoke to her.
"What happened to you?" he asked. "I don't remember you looking anywhere near this bad last night."
Valkyrie turned to him in confusion as she closed her door. He was unusual since he wasn't wearing his glamour. He was thin and wearing a crisp blue suit with a wide-brimmed hat on his head. But that seemed normal; it was that his head had no skin, no muscle, no nothing. It was just a white skull, just like the rest of him as he was Skulduggery Pleasant.
The Skeleton Detective.
"What are you talking about?" she asked with raised eyebrows when she winced as she twinged a new bruise and realised she forgot to clean up from her fight. "Oh. That?" she asked while he tilted his head in agreement. "Umm… well, I was just beating myself up," she said with a small grin at her inside joke. "You know this Darquesse thing and this new mage interfering and fighting her and everything."
Though Skulduggery had no visible eyes, Valkyrie could practically feel him rolling them at her. "Well, if you don't want to tell me, don't," he replied as he started the car. "But if you're telling the truth you should probably think about seeing a therapist," he said with a slight joking tone as he pulled the car away from the curb.
Valkyrie sighed and rolled her eyes. "Do I get to kill the therapist after?"
to be continued...