A/N: This was originally the final chapter in a series of JennyxJulian stories that I was going to do, however it looks like this is actually the only one I'm going to write.
To set the scene the idea is that Julian has come back and plays more games with Jenny, just Jenny, and after each game he makes her forget that it happened. That's all you need to know. Tom is not mentioned at all so I guess its slightly AU.
Waking the dead
Jenny decided that the quickest way home was to go through the graveyard. There was no cliché about it. She wasn't asked to meet anyone and she wasn't chased through, she just stepped easily through the gate and onto the paving slabs. It was a short cut because the road was closed. Despite knowing all the stories surrounding them Jenny didn't feel even mildly apprehensive. She could see why people would find them scary, with the thrown shadows and so many objects behind which an assailant could hide, along with the lingering presence of the dead – if that sort of thing scared you. After all the nightmares she'd gone through though, after all the screams and the fear and the running, she really didn't mind a walking for a few moments through a harmless graveyard.
It was dark, late but not so late for her to be nervous, and it was drizzling, very faint rain, barely enough to make her damp but it had continued long enough so that the refreshing scent of wet earth permeated the air. It was balmy, not cold; it was the rain that made her shiver every so often. All perfectly normal circumstances, mundane even. It was a two minute shortcut, maybe less than that.
A step through the gate, a few strides across the wet path, careful not to slip, onto the damp earth – not muddy – though the cropped grass, each blade glistening with the raindrops in the light of the nearby streetlamps, swerve a few gravestones and she would be able to see the steps of the exit.
For her the graveyard was a peaceful place. It was so quiet and still with the smell of the earth carried on the breeze, the warm air and the rain. She loved rain, though was not sure why. She'd always found something soothing about it.
So, to her, the graveyard was the very epitome of tranquillity and she was in no great hurry…until the voice whispered out of the darkness and shattered the silence.
"Walking through a graveyard in the dark?"
Her stomach lurched as she froze to the spot, sending a spike of adrenaline rushing through her body, flooding into her head in a rush of heat. It was strange how it made her feel at once alert and light headed. She could not see the owner of the beautiful lilt amongst the shadows and that increased the gnawing fear.
"You're brave," it continued in an amused tone.
She bolted. She didn't think it was a ghost. The living are more dangerous than the dead, and this one of the living liked to play games. Mind games. Of course, she could only think this through afterwards. In the graveyard there was only fear and darkness and pure instinct. The first to freeze, the second to run.
So she ran.
She sprinted for the steps. They led onto the street, out of isolation into habitation. The road looked safe from her position. It promised people and rescue from her faceless attacker. She felt her trainers slap the wet earth and then skid marginally as the soil changed to stone.
She was on the second step of the dark, descending corridor, feeling the first seeds of relief sprout as the light drew closer, when something slammed into her side and she collided with the wall. The breath had been knocked ruthlessly from her lungs and she gasped futilely, then a hand was clamped firmly over her mouth.
She couldn't scream. She didn't even have the air to breathe. Her lungs were devoid of oxygen and she couldn't satisfy the need through her nose.
In her haze of pain she felt a body over hers, pinning her to the wall, and something clasping her wrist. Her other arm was free but she couldn't move it.
"Now, don't run," the voice cooed. "One might think you didn't want to talk to me."
Their face was still wreathed in shadows. Her vision was slowly blacking and as the world blurred she tried to focus on that island of light and safety. It felt so close she could have touched it, a haze of yellow warmth.
She must have passed out because the next thing Jenny knew she was slumped in a small alcove set into the wall with no memory of how she got there and the first thing she saw was Julian's beautiful visage as he leant over her, blonde hair catching the orange light, brilliant blue eyes shadowed.
It caught her breath, it always had, but to wake up to it was overwhelming.
Light fingers brushed her jaw, sending chills of excitement through her as she stayed perfectly still, but for her shuddering breaths as her body continued to try and compensate for earlier. Julian's proximity wasn't helping.
"Don't scream," he whispered, barely audible. "You might wake the dead."
She couldn't yet speak. It was as if her vocal chords had frozen, from the shock of being winded…or Julian's intoxicating presence.
They stayed there silently for some time, eyes locked; breathing noiselessly, and suddenly it struck her why him being alive didn't shock her.
He'd been to her before, and played other games…and then made her forget. Why?
"I remember," broke from her lips and Julian recoiled backwards. Anger flashed across her face and she got to her feet.
"No," he spoke as if to himself. "You can't."
"You…what did you do?!"
Everything came flooding back in flashing images. Each game. Each chase. Each slow, satisfying kiss. Her anger died at the memories of his words, his touch. Her eyes softened, filled with bewilderment.
"Why?" she uttered quietly.
Julian stood opposite her, back against the wall. His eyes were no longer filled with worried concern but were dead and cold.
"It's another game Jenny, don't you get it? I'll play until I win, and if you forget then you can't be warned next time."
"Rubbish," she hissed. The memories were too clear, too marked, for her to even consider believing him. "Tell me the truth Julian."
The beautiful youth suddenly smiled his slow smirk of a wolf and dropped his eyelashes. A shiver went up Jenny's spine – that never meant anything good.
He turned away from her and sauntered slowly back up the steps into the graveyard.
"Julian! Tell me!"
She went after him, but the stairs seemed to grow and stretch in front of her, getting steeper until she lost sight of him as he disappeared over the top. She was running but not getting anywhere.
"Damn it! Cut that out!"
The illusion vanished immediately, disappearing like mist, and she tripped, falling onto her knees at the top of the stairs.
Gasping she lifted her head. Julian was standing directly opposite her, down the path heading towards the church. He was half turned to look at her, as if he'd halted to wait for her.
Jenny pushed herself to her feet with a frustrated growl and started to stalk down the cobbles towards him.
That was when the first shrieking wail pierced the air and there was a dull thump as a contorted hand burst through the earth next to the path, sending clods of soil showering all over her.
Jenny locked to the spot, eyes wide, scream frozen in her throat as the bile welled up. There was another wailing scream and thud and a second hand shot out on her other side. Then there were dead hands clawing at the air all around and she was running, absolutely petrified, dry sobs tearing from her throat.
Then she hit something human and she found herself looking up at Julian's face through her tears as he gripped her shoulders, a strange sneering smile on his face.
"Want to play another game Jenny?"
The desolation and fear yawned inside her and something snapped. She was tired of the games, the evasion, the longing. Regardless of rationality she now grabbed what she'd denied herself so long. Jenny threw herself at Julian, wrapping her arms around his waist and burying her head in his chest.
"No! I don't want to play another game. I just want you."
Suddenly everything went deathly still. All Jenny could hear was her own tears as they soaked Julian's shirt. His chest rose and fell beneath her head. The silence stretched onwards, the absent screams leaving a vacuum of nothing. She dared not turn to see if he'd called them off, she only focused on stemming tears and on his even breathing.
Jenny felt a touch on her back as Julian moved to hold her, his arms an anchor, keeping her safe.
"I had to see you again." His voice was barely more than a whisper as he moved his mouth next to her ear. "They brought me back on some whim…and I needed you." He paused, struggling to find the right words. "I couldn't…didn't want…if you knew then it'd start all over again." She knew what he meant. The permanent fear hanging over her. Stalking her. Hunting her. Fear of him. "So after every new game I made you forget it had happened."
Jenny tightened her arms around him and he in turn held her back. To all appearances they were a couple wrapped in the deepest remorse, bidding a farewell. In reality an emotional barrier had been smashed to pieces leaving them both shaken and unstable. So now they held each other steady, providing a support and comfort to the other.
"Why did you play a game?" came a muffled voice still laced with tears that had dried.
"Because I like games," Julian replied and Jenny twisted her head to his face to see a small smirk on his countenance.
"Promise me no more games," she replied sombrely. The smile faded from Julian's face and he tilted her head up towards him with his hand at her chin.
"I can't promise that Jenny…" He paused then bent his head so their lips lightly brushed. "But if I truly have you…" he slipped a hand into her hair and a small shiver ran up her back.
"I love you Julian," whispered from her lips filled with earnest compassion and his intense blue eyes, fixated so firmly on hers, shut slowly as he absorbed her words. He had waited so long, hoped so much, to just hear that sentence that the reality was overwhelming.
"Then there is no need for me to play another game with you again. Unless…" his eyes flashed, "you want to."
Jenny opened her mouth to protest but Julian covered it with his own and she was soon consumed in fire. It was the first kiss they'd shared as equals where there was no rivalry on either side, no friends to rescue, no game to win.
"Don't rule it out Jenny," Julian drew back from her and smiled wolfishly. "Games can be very enjoyable."