The Bounty of Giants - Sequel to 'Twisted Fate'
Please see 'Twisted Fate' to completely see where this story originates from, but even then you might not see where I'm going with this so please be aware that theres a period of about20 years between the two stories :)
Theodora Harrison moved silently about the house trying her best to not let the creaks from her home's old wooden stairs wake her sleeping parents in their upstairs bedroom. She could still hear the buzzing motor of her best friend's car racing down her street trying to make curfew. Theodora had missed hers by about two hours which left her in the present state of trying painfully to not make a sound.
"Theo?" Came the groggy call of her mother from the dark upstairs hallway. Freezing instantaneously Theodora held her breath as the call came again, seeking in the shadows. "Theo, is that you?"
"Honey come back to bed, I'm sure it was just that damn cat." Her father's voice whispered in the darkness. Theodora let her breath come out in spurts as her parent's door closed behind her mother. Speeding past the bathroom she didn't even bother to brush her teeth or take out her contacts, the risk was too great and she knew she wouldn't be sleeping that night anyway. Her excitement was too great for the summer days lying ahead of her. No more high school and college was too far off for her to begin feeling nervous. Slipping inside of her room she silently shut the door and leaned against the cool stained wood. She left the light switch untouched and stripped, leaving her purse and jeans intertwined on the floor as she simply fell on top of her bed.
The night hadn't been much, her best friend Sarah and her had spent the first few hours burning their old tests and work packets from the school year, and then jumped into Sarah's father's car to catch a chick film. It had been about some woman living in New York falling for her arrogant boss, and had been much like the night, not much. Theodora probably shouldn't have missed her curfew; she and Sarah had debated leaving the empty theater early in order to make the 12 o'clock deadline. In the end it had been more about simply acting out than for any other reason. She'd given her parents 18 years of her love and steady devotion and she figured one night staying out till 2 was not going to be a big wup.
As the night passed Theodora kept her eyes to the open window closest to her bed, attempting the impossible task of numbering the stars. Hours ticked by restlessly as Theodora switched positions occasionally; angling her long body this way and that thinking of everything she wanted to do in the upcoming months. There was the Renaissance Festival with Sarah, a four year tradition, and if she could a first kiss would be nice. Sarah and Theodora had discussed it over and over again and, both good girls by nature had decided this would be the summer of breaking the rules. Staying out past curfew had just been the start. What lay before the both of them was a potential spring fling, going to keggers, and Theodora's ultimate goal of losing her virginity. She had thought it over and over during the school year and had decided that the summer before college would be a perfect time to "pop her cherry" as Sarah always loved to call it. Long gone were her middle school fancies of giving herself away to the man of her dreams for her first time. She suspected her romantic prospects in life weren't that grand, and to be honest, she really just wanted to get it over with. Anyway from what she'd heard from Sarah, the first time wasn't that great anyway.
It was 4 am before Theodora began feeling her eyelids begin to droop and her thoughts slowed down from their frantic pace. The sound of crickets whispered in from her open window along with the occasional patter of the tires of a car passing her house. Knowing that her need of rest would eventually win out and she'd soon be asleep Theodora got up to go to the bathroom. She just couldn't handle the thought of sleeping with her contacts in, and her father being a dentist, going to bed without brushing ones teeth was considered sacrilege. About to close the bathroom door Theodora stopped when she saw her parent's door uncharacteristically left open. Probably the cat, Theodora thought dozily as she crept towards the open doorway to close it. Looking in, she noticed that her parent's bed was left empty; the cat lying sprawled across it like it was his own. What the heck? Theodora stepped in the dark room, trying to ignore the feeling she was getting at the base of her spine. Something wasn't right. The cat James looked up at her and mewed as she passed the bed and went towards the master bathroom. The door was closed.
"Mom?" Theodora called softly through the wood door. Theodora could hear someone in there moving, but a lump growing at the back of her throat was telling her it wasn't her mother. "Papa?" Theodora cried silently as she backed out through the bedroom towards the hallway. Leaving the door open she moved quickly into her room and closed the door. Theodora grabbed her jeans and slid them on and collected her purse. In case there was more than one of whoever was in her parent's bathroom she opened her window to its height and carefully pulled her long frame out onto the roof. Letting herself one gaze at the master bathroom's window she shut the glass behind her and climbed higher onto the roof.
The night was dead silent, gone were the crickets song and her street lay dark without movement. Theodora sifted through her purse for her cell phone and once finding it she dialed the three numbers she'd never imagined herself ever calling. 9-1-1.
"Hello, Troy Police Department how may I serve you?" The operator asked in a cheerful matter.
"Hi. Um, I think there's someone in my house, in my parent's bedroom." Theodora said shakily, eyeing the distance between herself and the ground.
"And are your parents home Miss?"
"Yes they are, I don't know where they are though. Can you please send someone; I'm on the roof of my house."
"Of course. Address please."
"220 Tothill Lane" A few moments of silence engulfed the line and Theodora checked her phone to make sure she had a good connection.
"I'll send someone over right now. I'd say give them 20 minutes." The operator stated.'
"20 minutes? But what if someone's in there with my Mom and Dad?" Theodora nearly cried, the panic beginning to hit her.
"Just sit tight Miss." The line snapped with finality as her cell phone lost its connection. Theodora silently closed her cell phone and placed it next to her on the faintly warm roof. Not the way she'd imagined her summer beginning. Theodora's mind raced with worst-case-scenarios as she sat poised on her house. Oh God, and just this night she'd defied them by skipping her curfew. The thought that her disobedience had caused this all to happen couldn't help floating through her mind.
"Theodora?" A voice called through the darkness. Theodora froze, she didn't recognize the voice. It was male, low and gruff and definitely coming from the window. She didn't answer as it called again.
"Theodora?" A figure appeared next to her bedroom window moving towards her. It stopped when it saw her and Theodora couldn't make out the face.
"Leave me alone." She called out weakly, scooting away on her knees. The figure crawled slowly closer until the light of the moon let her make out the face. Male, 50ish, with black hair streaked with grey. Definitely not the look of a murderer or rapist. Not even a thief, the man looked like he belonged in a library or at a university discussing lost cultures of the Fertile Crescent with a bored class looking up at him. The man inched closer till she could make out his dress. White oxford, black pants, black blazer- the look of a scholar. But what scholar would be on her roof at 4 in the morning?
"I won't hurt you, I just wanna talk." The man said, holding his hands up to show he was unarmed.
"Bullshit." Theodora spat. "That's what they always say in the movies! If you aren't here to hurt me what the fuck are you doing on my roof, and where are my parents?" The man gazed at her impatiently then seemed to search the skies for something. Sitting back on his haunches he let out a deep, creaking breath.
"My names John Constantine." He stated as if it was supposed to mean something to her.
"I didn't ask you your name; I asked you what the fuck you are doing on my roof! Where are my mom and dad?" Theodora nearly screeched, she couldn't help the little girl come out of her at a time like this.
"I've been watching you a long time you know. Since you were born. You know you were adopted?" He said with faint sadness as he looked out at her lawn.
"How the hell do you know I was adopted?" Suddenly a horrible thought came to Theodora's mind as she sat glaring at the stranger. "Are you the one who killed my parents?" The man flinched when she asked him this.
"No Theodora, I didn't kill your parents. They asked me to look after you." This, Theodora couldn't believe.
"Leave me alone." She said throatily, her voice low and deadly. Moving fast she got to her feet and raced to the side of the roof above the garage. Almost as if he had predicted the move, the man was next to her gripping her wrist.
"Please Theodora, let me explain." His grip tightened as she leaned out towards the edge.
"Leave me alone!" She screamed, each moment bringing her closer to hysterics. Using her nails she fought at his grip, lifting his sleeve from his wrist enough to reveal a dark tattoo.
"Theodora, please, you're going to hurt yourself." His earnest concern let Theodora use it against him.
"If you don't want me to get hurt let me go!" She increased her energy but his grip only tightened. In all and out panic Theodora stepped out over the edge and felt herself drop. He never let go, gazing down at her she saw the strain her weight was having upon him. "Let me go!" She whispered through pressed lips.
"No, you'll fall!" The man cried as he tried to lift her up to the safety of the roof. Using her bare feet she kicked against the side of garage and launched all her weight out from the roof. With a silent scream the man followed her down, falling towards the pavement.
See where I'm going with this? No? Well, I'll be making my intentions clear in the next few chapters.