Chapter 1: I Vow.
AN: Hey guys. I'm bringing all my fics together into this account. New goal, to finish my fics.
Anyways this one is chack. I'll be uploading almost each month I guess. Wish me luck. I don't own either Xiaolin Showdown or Corpse Bride. If I did, they'd be different. Now, on with the Story!
Jack watched as the morning sun rose higher in the sky, heating the world to another day of the world's wonderful summers. However, the teenager couldn't take advantage of the nice sunny day, as many of the others certainly did. He couldn't walk in the sun and enjoy the warm rays. Or feel the sun warmed grass of his mother's beautiful garden. Only because of the condition he was born with, his god given curse as his father said. Yes, Jack was an albino. Born of flawless white skin as delicate to the sun's rays, as it is to any strenuous physical activity; the young adult burnt in the few hours spent in sun and bruised just as easily. It was more problematic that he was born clumsy. A fact Jack's father never stopped reminding him of.
There were children running around in the garden below. Their squeals of laughter easily reached Jack's room. This left him all the more broken hearted that he could never be down there. Not unless he wanted to call upon pain on purpose. Still he watched the children enjoy and dreamed. Although, why the children were there that day, very much ruined it as well.
You see, today wasn't just any simple sunny day. Today he was to marry someone he never met. But then, he had no say in what was happening. Being the only child of the well-known and wealthy Spicers' and being born weak, this was to be his lot in life. It was a given that Jack, with his albinism, cannot live up to his father's standards of what an heir is to be. So this was the only option he had been given.
"It's either you stay in that dark hole you call a lab or bring some pride to this family and marry our chosen spouse for you." Michael had growled at the depressed teen when he had finally spoken up about it. Jack had known in that instant that if he had not agreed, life for him in this house would be impossible.
At least if he went through with the marriage, he wouldn't have to deal with his father's disappointed looks and his mother's worried glances.
"My wedding day..." Jack sighed softly.
Jack had not yet met his spouse to be... and was nervous about finally meeting him. He had heard rumors though. His groom's name was Raimundo Pedrosa. Raimundo was the tall, dark and handsome kind, if went by his childhood companion, Kimiko's, view. 'He has lush dark brown hair and a smile to die for.' Jack remembered Kimiko squealing in delight. Though Jack had also heard that he was the youngest of eight brothers, he had a nasty personality from his feline loving cousin Ashley. Jack took both judgments to heart and hoped that his to soon be husband would come to like him, if not love or care for him.
"What am I thinking? Like anyone could marry me for love alone... I look as pale as the dead and thin as a ghost..." Jack left off, not wishing to complete the sentence.
The Pedrosa family was not one Jack had heard of before. They had just shown up one day in town, moving into the old abandoned mansion at the outskirts of it. And so Jack had looked them up when his marriage was fixed to him. He had found that the Pedrosa family was going bankrupt. Their business wasn't doing well and their partners had cut them off. What surprised him was that there wasn't a single picture of any of the family members. Had being a powerful business family in the past there should have been something, even if they were in the west and jack's family now resided in China. With all this, he knew that this marriage could not be anything but a marriage of convenience.
"Jackie~" Alexis Spicer called happily as she entered Jack's room, giving him just only a moment to put up a smile. He turned to his mother and couldn't help the chuckle that left his full lips. She was dressed as brightly in white, as if it was her own wedding. To her benefit, she looked absolutely dazzling in the white laced gown. Her bright sun yellow hair glittered with the glitter that was put on but it was her green eyes that shined brighter than all, with sheer joy. Jack would do anything for his mother and to keep her smiling happily like that.
"They are here!" His mother cooed. "And your husband to be is handsome! My, what a couple you will make~" She chirped as she fluttered around the room that Jack had specially furbished to his liking. The walls, the carpet and ceiling were all black while most of the furniture was white. The Queen Size bed was in bright red though. And it was one of the things that she highly approved of. Her eyes fell on a silent Jack and instantly she stopped. She watched him closely for a moment before coming to him.
"You promise won't you, Jack? That you will do your best to hang on to this marriage? You may come to love him in the future, you know, just like I did your father." She asked softly, knowing the pain in Jack's heart, having once felt it herself. She smiled again when Jack smile back sincerely.
"What made you fall in love with him, mom?" Jack asked, a little perturbed to be asking the question.
"The little things he did for me, darling. It's always in the little things." Alexis smiled, reminiscing for a moment. "A marriage without love and respect is just a contract Jack. Not true marriage."
Jack wondered for a moment if he can get there in his relationship with Pedrosa. "Okay mom, I'll try, for you." He murmured. "Are they ready for the vows rehearsal?" Jack asked brightly at a bad attempt to change the subject.
Alexis giggled at her young son and let it be, it was allowed of him that day. After all, today was important. After the Vow Rehearsal, her little Jackie's wedding will be held that night, under the full moon.
"Yes, they are. I came to bring you down darling. They're waiting in the garden."
"The GARDEN!" Jack stood up in surprise. He looked outside again in shock. The sun was shining quite bright. Had his father by chance forgotten to mention to his to be in laws that he was an Albino?! Which means no direct sunlight for long? And with the Vow Rehearsal it was bound to take long and –
"Jackie." Alexis spoke out stopping Jack from his panic. "Trust ya mama a bit now, would ya." She smirked at her son. Instantly Jack calmed. Those who said that Alexis was a true blonde as an insult were idiots. His mother was cunning. Hiding behind her 'Blonde' reputation in society, but in fact she could easily ruin them all if she wanted.
How else could a tough headed bull willed man of a Spicer make his business flourish in a business world? And one of the things she so treasured happened to be her only son. Jack really should've known.
"The garden's been re-furbished." Alexis explained as she moved around her son, checking him over any flaws in the snow white suit he wore. "The garden looks more like the forest now, you know. A beautiful one, though if I must say so myself. None of the horrid sun's beams will fall on my delicate son. No Sir!" She winked at Jack making him chuckle.
"Mooom!" Jack whined just for whining's sake. After all he only missed a few things in his home. But his mom will be missed most. She was, after all the only one who understood him.
"Oh! And one more thing." Jack's mom said taking out a velvet box from the folds of her skirt somehow. "You'll wear this won't you Jack?" She asked opening the box to reveal a pin made of red Plumeria flowers. At Jack's nod she pinned it safely to the breast pocket and sighed. "Oh, my beautiful baby boy."
"Moom!" Jack laughed out loud as his mother huffed and started pushing him out the door. It was time to face his future.
Time seemed to have sped up on the way down to the garden at the back of the mansion. His heart beat loudly in his ears, his body trembled and he hoped he didn't look paler than normal. He hoped against hope that Kimiko would be right with her gushing and Ashley was wrong in her growling.
The garden was beautifully decorated. Hardly any sunrays got though the light veils hung on trees, tapestries and all kinds of thing. Glass beads hung everywhere shimmering in the light and tinkling with the wind. It was beautiful and he smiled again. His mom was a genius and a drama queen.
As he came up to the alter Jack finally saw him, his husband to be. Raimundo Pedrosa was a young man of probably the same age as him. With brown fly away hair, dark toned skin although he wasn't all that Kimiko was talking about. Raimundo may have been tall for his Chinese friend, but to Jack he was shorter. However this did not seem to deter Raimundo in the least, who was smirking at him as he looked Jack over. What was most startling to Jack, were his eyes. The bright green eyes were shining in mischief and something else he couldn't put a name to. But it didn't bode him well, he knew in his gut.
Jack's eyes lowered as his face bloomed red. He did not like being stared at; it had led to horrible things in his experience. His fingers twitched still feeling his gaze on him. It felt like he was going to be devoured. Jack moved a little, trying to secretly hide behind his flamboyant mother.
"Let's carry on with the rehearsal." Said the town's Minister who stood facing Jack and Raimundo. Jack looked once more at his groom and again felt something inside him curl. He didn't know why but... his soul was crying out. 'As if this wasn't daunting enough without everything else that was happening.' Jack thought. He didn't understand it and that left him deep in thought.
"Jack!" His father's voice brought him back to reality, startling him into jumping and dropping his cup of wine. Beside him, Raimundo snickered. Jack quickly bent down to retrieve the fallen cup and chuckled softly. He apologized softly to the Minister and kept the cup on the Alter. The minister handed him the candle instead.
"W-with this candle I will... I will," Jack glanced secretly Raimundo once again and trembled. "Light your... wine..." Jack mumbled distractedly.
"What?" He heard one of Raimundo's many brothers bellow out a laugh. Jack shrank the moment he knew what he said. His heart beat tripled when he felt the angry fumes coming off his father.
"Can you not remember your wedding vows, boy?! Do you not want this marriage to take place? Or are you just so willing to drag my name through to the end?!" His father howled at him angrily, frightening Jack more. He whimpered softly.
"Do I really have to marry this spineless coward?" Raimundo sniggered again from his side.
Jack shrank a bit more. He knew his luck would never do him well.
"Jackie..." It was his mother's sad whisper that broke him. He never meant to make his mom ashamed of him especially today.
Tears ran down his porcelain cheeks as he ran from the garden-made-forest. Not looking where he headed. He ran ignoring the cries that came after him. Gasps that followed as he crossed the old stone bridge into the dark thick forest beyond.
Jack sniffled and growled at the same time, harshly drying away his tears. He hated how his father can drive him to fear and his mother can bring him to tears without trying. He growled again as he stomped through the darkened forest. Jack didn't understand why his soul had cried out to him. He didn't understand why his mind refused to co-operate with him and more why his heart now felt glad that he could escape from everyone's gaze, even if it was just for a little bit of time. Hadn't he resigned himself to the loveless marriage? He had decided to stand tall and look proud even if he didn't feel it. He had decided to for once get things done by his father's standards. And he had ruined it spectacularly.
He knew the vows. He knew them by heart. He had practiced them for hours during the nights after when his wedding was planned. He had had no intention of shaming his family in front of the guests. And yet here he was, walking to god knows where after doing just that. Jack looked up as a crow cawed loudly. He looked away, shaking his head and continued walking. Of course that's where he had ended up running.
At least now, he knew where he was, the dark forest that lay beyond his house. It was said to be cursed, but Jack didn't believe that. It just happened to look dark and creepy.
The ring in his breast pocket felt heavy, laying there near his heart. 'I know the vows!' Jack thought wildly.
'Do I really have to marry this spineless coward?'
Jack huffed and pulled out the ring from his pocket and took a staccato pose; His back straight, his voice strong and a beautiful smile grazing his lips.
"With this hand," Jack brought forward his hand and lifted it into the air. "I will lift your sorrows."
"You cup will never empty," Jack bowed with flourish, bring his left hand that held the ring to his back and cupping his right to mimic holding a wine cup. "for I will be your wine."
Jack broke a piece of the dead branch next to him as he continued on with the next verse. "With this candle, I will light your way in darkness." he copied the act of lighting another candle.
Jack knelt down on the cold forest floor that glowed eerily white under the full moon's glow and said the last verse.
"With this ring, I ask you to be mine." The ring his hand was easily thrown into the air and caught with his right. He pushed the ring of pure gold onto a dead branch that looked like a hand. With the vows said correctly and without errors, he wished deep in his heart to be loved by his spouse. "For that is all I ask." He wished softly.
The sudden cawing of many crows broke the silence of the night, startling Jack into looking up at the tall dead trees. On them he saw black crows, all staring at him with glowing red eyes. They once again started their loud cawing. Jack looked from one dead tree to another to only see black crows sitting on them instead of any leaves. And they were all staring at him.
Startling the boy more, the birds took off into the night, spreading there ebony wings to lift them high in the cold breeze. Some flew down, past Jack's head, almost grazing it.
Scared and shivering Jack fell on the cold ground. He crawled backwards, trying to get away from the crows flying around in circles, hoping not to be there next meal. However, he froze on the spot when his back hit something. Not knowing why, but Jack knew this was no tree and so was too afraid to turn around and look. He whimpered instead as his heart jumped and lodged in his throat, hardly allowing him to breathe.
Whatever was behind him moved and Jack whimpered again only to feel a cold breeze next to his ear, making him shiver, but not with the cold. He could barely believe the words that followed.
"I accept. And you shall be mine forever."
'Accept?' Jack thought. Suddenly he noticed the sharp teeth very close to his face. Jack screamed.
AN: Hope you enjoyed this. Oh.I also edited some mistakes this had. But I don't have a Beta so all mistakes are still mine. If anyone is interested to Beta let me know.