Ok, you guys are going to hate me but I've had 2/3 of this done and sitting for about two weeks. _ Spare me please.

I've been so busy trying to get ready for the deadline of my book that I didn't have time to finish it. (Night time is normally writing time for me and lately the book has been hogging that time.)

I am also halfway done with the next one for 'Never Cry Wolf.' So bare with me here because the updates are going to be a bit slow but still coming.

Also thank you for so many reviews!

I didn't think many of you would take such an interest in this story so that was surprising. O_O

I hope u like the next chapter and sorry to keep you waiting.

Without further ado…


Abandon Hope All Who Enter Here Chap.2

The Lower Birth

The morning light flooded through the exposed bedroom window making the older teen squint and wince. Hope had torn down the curtain to get to the iron pole soon after he awoke. Though the rod wasn't much of a weapon compared to what he was up against it was the only thing he had to work with at the moment. He groaned as he continued to try and force the heavy dresser away from the door. His injured sides stinging and beginning to bleed once again as he strained his abdomen.

With one last grunt the large wooden object finally gave way and slide back into its rightful place. Sighing in relief Hope stumbled into the hallway, using the pole like a crutch so he could remain somewhat standing. As he clumsily made his way down the steps his eyes widened with shock at what he saw. For though the screaming and the crashing sounds that took place out of the room where utterly nightmarish nothing in the house seemed to have been touched. And whatever was thrown across the house last night couldn't be found.

Hope turned slowly to look at the kitchen table where he had first encountered the creature. Yet even that seemed to be fine. The exquisite marble top didn't have a blemish on it though he firmly remembered her talons practically shredding through the stone. He wanted to take a better look but shied away from the hall- from the basement door- and subconsciously moved towards the front door.

The teen cursed at his own weakness and fear when his fingertips touched the doorknob. With a hiss he yanked his hand away and hobbled to the couch. Groaning, he plopped down and threw a pale arm over his face; the rod still clutched tightly within the other hand. He was tired, and he was hurting, and he was scared, but he couldn't run away. His parents would never believe his story and his father would only hold it against him. He would claim that Hope was lying and then ramble on about how immature he is before forcing him back to the house.

Hope would be forever humiliated and look like a whiny coward to his family and neighbors.

The only proof he had that the fight really did happen was his own wounds- and if not for that then he would have doubted what happened himself. But more than likely showing his parents the injuries would only backfire and land him in a psycho ward. If anything they would be calling the exorcist for him not for the house.

No, he couldn't run away though he was terrified. He would have to face this problem head on, even if it was for the sake of his own sanity.

'Ghosts have always appeared in legends throughout history. And there are ways to expel unwanted spirits from houses. The woman had caught me off guard but as long as I stay on my toes it won't happen again,' He thought to himself. Trying to rally what little courage he had left.

His inner pep talk had little effect but with another grunt Hope managed to push himself off the couch and limp back to the door. Whatever he decided he was still hurt and needed to take care of the gashes properly before infection had even more of a chance to set in than it already had. Grunting he swung open the front door and tried to step out but only succeeded in slumping on the solid frame; hanging onto the handle with his free hand for dear life.

Hope mentally kicked himself when he remembered that he had hitched a ride with the movers. His cycle was in a shop for repairs and wouldn't be out for the next few days. And this rate he wouldn't be able to make it down the street in this state much less find a store.

"Hope are you all right?"

The teen turned his head to see Vanille as she dropped a plastic bag on the porch and ran to the fence line. Her blue eyes shinning with worry.

"Yeah, im fine," Hope said as he tried to push himself up. He scratched his head and chuckled nervously, "I ….. just had a bad trip down the stairs last night and clipped my side a bit."

It was sorta the truth.

"Oh dear," The girl gasped as she held her hand up to her mouth in shock, "Are you ok? Is there anything I can do?"

"Well, I haven't really gotten a chance to check out the neighborhood and I need to clean these scrapes. Could you tell me the nearest store that sells gauze and disinfectant?" He asked.

"Why sure. There is a pharmacy shop a few miles from here," She replied as her finger tapped on her chin, "But I don't think you should be going anywhere in the shape your in. How about you rest a while and I'll go get it for you."

"You really don't hav-"Hope started but was cut of by Vanille's slight glare.

Her mind was made up and Hope got the feeling it was best just to agree with her.

"Sure, that sounds nice," He said quickly before leaning against the door again.

His tired, battered body already feeling the strain.

"Great, I'll be back soon," Vanille waved as she hoped back down the walkway and set out.

Hope waved her off before hobbling back to the couch. Making a noise when his sides flared as he hit the cushions again. With a tired yawn he stretched his aching limbs out as best he could before snuggling into the softness.

Then, with a few lazy blinks Hope was out again.

Hope could only watch as a shadowed figure prowled around him. Slowly but surely pushing in as bright blue eyes glimmered with hatred. And though he couldn't see the figure he knew it was her. He could feel it; recognize it from her aggressive posture and cutting gaze. And once again he found the instinct to bolt like a frightened animal creep up. But like last time his rational mind knew he couldn't win.

The beast snarled and lurched forward, trying to get him to step back or run. However Hope knew better this time and kept himself in check. Though he visibly paled his feet remained bolted to the ground and unwilling to budge. The beast's blue eyes narrowed in rage when they saw the silent determination. Hope couldn't help but slightly flinch when she let out a deafening roar of fury. And then she was coming at him. Flying through the air in one massive pounce like a giant jungle cat. Her clawed fingers spread wide so they could pull him in then slice his flesh to the bone. Her fangs gleaming like white ivory in the black and angled for his neck.

"Hope!"

Hope awake with a gasp. His sides burning as cold, salty sweat slid into his wounds.

'"It was just a dream," He mumbled as his reasonable thoughts tried to comfort his panicking impulse. "It was just a nightmare."

"Hope!"

The boy jumped in surprise as his name was called again but relaxed a few moments later when he identified the voice.

'Fang.'

"Damnit Hope get your scraggly ass out here!"

The teen couldn't help but chuckle. For he couldn't tell if he should feel happy hearing a friendly voice after what just happened; or frightened by the promise of pain that was rising in the aggravated woman's tone. With a soft cry the boy forced himself up off the couch and grabbed the iron pole that had been dropped on the ground next to the arm rest. However as Fang bellowed his name again he felt a chill run up his spine.

Her heated yelling wasn't coming from the front, but rather the back door. And to get there he would have to go through the hallway- past the basement door. The urge to panic tried to raise its ugly head yet again but Hope quickly squashed it. He took a deep breath and held it as he half tiptoed-half ran down the hall before his courage could give in. Though he tried his best to be quite the old floor still screeched under his weight as he walked by causing him to glance worriedly at the doorknob. But nothing seemed disturbed by the sudden noise and Hope swiftly darted to the other side.

Fang's yell rang out once again as Hope let out a sigh of relief. He smirked in triumph as he hobbled his way out side to greet her.

"Hi Fang I-"

"You like to take your good ol' time don't cha," Fang grumbled at him.

Her body leaning over the fence and shoulders hitched up in clear irritation. Black kinked hair framing her glowering amber eyes.

Hope almost laughed at the striking resemblance between her and a disgruntled alley cat. But he sensed it wouldn't be very wise to joke with her at the moment so he bit his tongue as he limped over to meet her at the fence.

Seeing his gimp the fire in Fang's eyes died down a bit as she pushed a white plastic bag into his arms.

"So I heard you got beat up last night by the," She looked him before smirking slightly, "…stairs."

Hope let out a fake, uneasy laugh, "Yeah, beat up on my first day, I guess its never easy being the new guy."

Fang let out a soft snort, "Corny, you need some new material kid. Still, seems like an awful lot of damage done just by falling down a few steps."

"Aww, common Fang you're still not going on about ghosts," He teased.

He knew it would be best to tell her what happened. She could help him. Still, something told him that he should keep his late night encounter to himself. At least for the time being.

Fang eyed him suspiciously, clearly showing that she knew he was not telling her the whole truth.

"At least tell me you've sprinkled salt around your house."

"Salt?" Hope questioned curiously.

"Yeah, it kills off all the nasties and cleanses the house," She replied with a shrug, as if it were common knowledge.

"Interesting," Hope admitted, "Does the salt have to be purified?"

"Nope, any salt should do. Any spirit hates the stuff. It burns their skin and-"

"Fang! Can you come here, I could use some help!" Vanille called from somewhere inside the other home.

Fang sighed, "Well I'll cya later then Hope."

He nodded in agreement as she made her way back to the house.

"And watch out for those stairs; they can be a real killer," She added snippily before disappearing through the door with a wide grin.

As soon as Fang was out of sight Hope raced for the shed; moving as fast as his beaten body would let him. Its doors swung open with a heavy creak as he made his way inside.

"Salt, salt," He whispered to himself as he searched around, "Where could it … ahh,"

Hope shifted the plastic pharmacy bag into the other hand along with the pole and groaned as he hoisted up a large sack of road salt that was sitting in the far corner. His breath came out hard and short as he lugged the heavy load back into his home. With a grunt he heaved everything onto the table before practically collapsing into a chair.

Hope's head fell back and swayed for a bit. His beaten body was feeling exhaustion quickly setting in yet again. He lazily tugged his shirt from over his head and tossed it to the ground before straightening up and pulling the medical supplies out of the bag.

Though the wound weren't as deep as he had first thought they hadn't closed properly and where definitely dirty. He hissed as he swiped an anti-biotic swab over his wounds. However the healing cream he rubbed over them next was soothing and cool. And he nearly groaned with relief as he wrapped the gauze thickly around his waist- a little too tight. After relaxing for a second he examined his work. Though it wasn't the best patch up with any luck that would keep it from getting infected; though it would defiantly scar.

Hope wanted to sleep off the pain but his work wasn't done. He wasn't safe yet. His eyes drooped as he stood up on shaky legs and ripped the bag of salt open. Then proceeded to dump its contents all over the kitchen floor. As he went into the hall he poured a mountain of salt all around the door and the stairwell. Soon he had everything in the living room covered as well and was gusting the steps. When he finished the upstairs he ran back down to grab the pole and medical supplies he had left on the table before rushing back to his room, leaving the ruined shirt where it lay.

Hope's body felt like lead as he dropped on the bed. He could barely keep his eyes open but the nightmare and the woman were still fresh on his mind, keeping him from dozing too far off. And all too soon the little sunlight left dulled into twilight.

As the orange faded black the basement door swung open. And not a second later a pained shriek filled the air along with a strange crackling noise. At the sound Hope leapt off of the bed and stood ready, with pole in hand, in case something managed to get up stairs. However when the shriek became an enraged scream Hope felt his blood run cold. She was pissed.

With a soft yelp Hope scrambled under the bed and pressed himself against the wall. Abandoning the iron pole on the ground. All thoughts of chivalry that he may have had where instantly tossed out the window. He trembled when the yowling beast flung open his door with such force it sounded like it would break off the hinges. And then the horrid snuffling began again as she searched the room. Clearly smelling him but not being able to pin point his location.

The pink haired beast let out another displeased noise and toppled the dresser used to keep her out the night before. Then she was up on the bed. And Hope had to ball up even tighter as the mattress slumped down to accommodate her weight. Finally she climbed off and slunk back out into the hall; undoubtedly livid at the fact that her prey slipped away.

A minute ticked by; and then another before Hope slowly began to slide himself from under his haven. His breathing came shallow and light and he tried to force his thrumming heart to slow. But as he slowly moved to stand Hope felt it skip a few beats as a surprised gasp echoed through the air like thunder to him.

The teen gulped as he turned to see the pink haired ghost from last night. Though she hadn't tried to rip him apart yet Hope still felt his blood run cold, and for good reason. After a second the shock of seeing him again was replaced with fear and the girl opened her mouth to scream. To summon the other one.

"Please!" Hope begged pitifully. His hand slightly reaching out in a desperate attempt to stop her from wailing.

Luckily it seemed to work this time and the girl hesitantly closed her mouth. Her deep blue eyes watching him suspiciously.

"I don't want to hurt you. Just please, don't yell, don't call 'Her' back," Hope gasped out as he tried to reason with the specter.

The ghost glared at him with distrust for a few moments more as she looked him over. But her eyes softened with sympathy and understanding when they examined his exposed, bandaged sides.

Hope's shoulders slumped in relief when she nodded and gave him a small smile. The teen gladly returned the smile as he slightly swayed to one side. The small period of peace, however, was violently interrupted as the other woman came thundering into the room once more and launched herself at Hope as he jerked back only to slip and fall.

Yet as soon as she moved to come after him the other girl stepped within the attack line and blocked her way. This shocked the taller woman for a second before she growled threateningly and tried to make her way around the other. But the smaller girl was just as stubborn and she blocked the creatures way again. Their eyes locked in a stand off, blue on blue.

"Leave him alone Lightning, this boy doesn't deserve this," The younger spoke up suddenly, her voice soft and feminine but full of determination.

The other- Lighting- snorted in disgust, "He is an outsider. I have warned him that he is not welcome here and he did not listen."

Lightning glared at Hope and he coward under her gaze. A sick feeling twisting his stomach at the thought that he was prey.

"He means us no harm," the younger replied.

'Tch, then he has an awful funny way of showing it; taking a swing at you yesterday and covering the whole house with Salt," Lightning snapped, her eyes darting between intimidating Hope and glaring at her sister.

"He was scared and was only trying to defend himself," The girl quipped back as she moved herself over to block Lightning's view of Hope. "Besides you have to except we are not of this realm any more. Someone was going to move into this house eventually. And I, for one, am just grateful that is seems to be somebody reasonable."

"This house is taken, whether the humans realize it or not," Lightning snarled, "No one is to live here but us. US, Serah, does not include him… or anyone else."

"Lightning be reasonable," Serah pleaded, "If you continue doing this there won't be a house to protect. Sooner or later they are just going to tear it down and where would that leave us? If this boy stays we could stop that. There must be some way we can find some common ground and make a deal."

Lightning scowled as she weighed her options, clearly not liking her sister's idea but she having no other choice at the moment. And Serah was not going to cave.

"You, boy," She sneered at Hope as her sister moved to the side.

The said teen shakily looked up as she toward over him from his position on the floor.

"I will allow you to live here under my protection as long as you promise to keep our being a secret and handle our worldly affairs," she told him, curt and to the point

Hope nodded, it was the only thing he could do as Lightning peered down at him with icy blue eyes.

"Give me your hand and we shall seal the deal," She said briskly and held out her own.

Hesitantly he held up his hand, only to yelp when she grabbed his arm in a vice grip and sliced his palm with her claws. Then shed ripped open her own with her fangs and pressing them to together.

A strange shock ran through his body when their blood mingled. And then it was over as fast as it had happened. The wound on his hand instantly sealed, leaving only a small dot of light in its wake.

The girl pulled away and straightened up before briskly making her way to the door.

"Are you happy," she gripped at her sister, who just smiled brightly back.

Then she turned back to Hope and barked, "The first thing you can do is clean up all that salt you threw everywhere. I don't want to see your face until every piece is off of MY floor."

And just like that she was gone.

Hope could only stare blankly as Serah held out her hand to help him up, or at least he hoped.

"Don't worry, my sister's bark is worse than her bite- most of the time," She said, then laughed as he moved to grab her hand, only to have his slide right through, "She'll warm up to you though it may take a bit."

Hope frowned as he pushed himself up off the floor. His body screaming at the simple effort.

"But until then I suggest we both stay on her good side. Common, we can talk while you clean," Serah chirped merrily as she half walked-half floated through the wall and out into the hallway.

After a second Hope moved to follow her. His mind strangely blank as he tried to decipher what just happened.


And this chapter is done. If your see any mistakes let me know, I havent found an editor yet.

Thank you and remember to review and tell me what you think.

They really help me to spur on.

(Edit: Yes lightning and serah's conversation is a bit short but there is a reason why light didnt put up much of a fight. The reason will be in the next chapter.)