Hi, um, this is my first attempt at writing a story like this so if it sucks, feel free to comment. Thanks! Anyway, in this story, its two months after Death Bringer and Valkyrie is a few weeks away from turning 18. Warning! Death Bringer spoilers!
Summary: A girl with a striking resemblance to Valkyrie has been spotted in Haggard, and Valkyrie and Skulduggery investigate, only to find a girl with strange powers who has lost all memories of her past from 10 years ago. In the process of trying to decipher her past, a mysterious new villain by the name of Sheila Diablos has targeted anyone close to the doppelganger for some reason, and so the duo must unravel this mystery to protect the girl and also make sense of their feelings for each other.
Pairings: Valduggery, Ghanith, slight OC x OC/Fletcher.
Valkyrie was mad. Very mad. She swept back her long dark hair in irritation as she stared out of the window of the Bentley in her frustration as she recalled her morning. She had been reading a book in her bedroom at Gordon's mansion, which her parents, after weeks of pleading and begging, had finally and reluctantly allowed her to move into. After all, Valkyrie was going to be eighteen in a few weeks' time, so what was the problem in allowing her learn to get used to living by herself, Valkyrie had told her parents.
What she never told them was that it meant less use of the reflection and more time with Skulduggery and gang. She was starting to regret it because a week after she moved in (with the assistance of the rest of course) , Skulduggery had turned up at her window abruptly, told her to get dressed and practically dragged her to the Bentley, and shoved her in with no explanation whatsoever!
"Are you still mad at me, Valkyrie?" That gloriously smooth velvet voice could only belong to Skulduggery Pleasant himself.
"Let's see, you drag me out of my house with no explanation whatsoever, yell at me to get dressed, then with no courtesy whatsoever, shove the car door in my face and drive off at an insane speed before I'm finished buckling myself in. And now, you ask me, am I still mad at you? So, to answer your question, YES, YOU IDIOT!" Valkyrie yelled straight into Skulduggery's skull before turning back to the window with her arms crossed, her face black with rage and seething with anger.
After a minute or two of silence, Skulduggery replied, "Ah that was rather, unexpected."
Valkyrie turned back to him ready to yell again but was stopped by a single gloved bony finger on her lips. Seeing as to how she was being forced to shut up, she glared at him. As the car slowed to a stop at a red light, Skulduggery turned towards her and tilted his head in an amused manner as he looked at her furious expression.
"You look beautiful when you're angry, did you know that?"Skulduggery said. As soon as he said those words, he quickly looked away just like Valkyrie who blushed deeply and looked out of the passenger window.
Valkyrie had not expected those words from Skulduggery. She had always loved him, but she never dared to admit her feelings. After all, she was just seventeen years old, nearing eighteen, but Skulduggery was a four hundred year old skeleton who would never love her. Therefore, she had no intention of letting Skulduggery know for fear that she embarrassed herself when he rejected her.
After a long and awkward silence, Skulduggery finally spoke.
"Anyway, the reason why I, in your own words, dragged you out of your home with no explanations whatsoever was because we have a new case."
"A new case?" Valkyrie said, surprised, her earlier bad mood forgotten. "What is it about this time? I hope it's not some new idiot deciding to try world domination again because honestly, I've grown bored of it."
"Actually, it's not. It's about you." Skulduggery said in an awkward manner.
"Yes, you. Apparently, recently there have been reports of a girl who looks just like you spotted outside town. But, instead of long hair hers is cut short just beneath the ears and she also dresses differently from you. From what I've been able to gather so far, the main reason she can't be you is because you have a perfect alibi; you were always with me or at home whenever your doppelganger was spotted."
"When and where was she first spotted? Also, why do I get the feeling that this is old news to you?"
"She was spotted outside Haggard three weeks ago and, well, I've known about this case for a week."
"I know that you're probably about to yell at me again about why I didn't tell you anything when I've so obviously known about this for quite a while now, but I have a valid reason for this! You were busy moving house so I didn't want to bother you while I was trying to find out more about this girl on my own."
"That is not a valid reason you arrogant fool! That's an excuse! You should have told me sooner so that we can find out who she is! In fact, if I remember correctly, you took one whole month just to find your favorite hat which turned out to be in your car boot the entire time. And to add to your failures, that was only after I pointed you to it. Before that, you didn't even see it even though it was right under your very nose!"
"For your information, Valkyrie, I knew where it was the whole time. I was just… testing you, to see if you were as sharp – eyed as me."
Valkyrie snorted. "Yeah, right. If that was so, then why did you hesitate when I told you where your hat was?"
"Did not, and can we get back to the topic at hand?"
"Sure, as soon as you tell me why you've decided to suddenly ask for my help." Valkyrie narrowed her eyes as soon as she realized what she was saying. "Wait a minute. What are you hiding from me this time?"
Skulduggery put an innocent tone. "Hide what? I have absolutely no reason to hide anything from you."
"Oh really? Then why are you sounding so innocent and guilty at the same time?"
"Yes and there's no reason why you would delay telling me this, unless…"
"Spit it out, Skulduggery. I know you're hiding something from me, and if you're not going to tell me the truth, I swear I'll go ask Erskine and Ghastly what you're hiding. I'm pretty sure they would love to tell me."
"I'm not joking."
"I know that."
"Then spit it out already!"
"Sigh… Fine. I give up. I made a bet with Ghastly and Erskine."
"What kind of bet?"
"They bet that I would give up working solo on this case after a week of no results."
"And if you lost the bet, what would they get?"
Skulduggery muttered darkly under his breath. "I have to treat them and their friends to their meals for a week."
"And if you refuse?"
"They'll share some embarrassing stories about me to the whole Sanctuary."
Valkyrie couldn't help it. She laughed. She laughed so hard that tears flowed down her cheeks and she had to wrap her arms around her side as the cramps from laughing so hard and long started.
Skulduggery glared at her. "This isn't funny at all!"
"Yes it is!"
"No it isn't!"
"Yes it is! It's the best thing I've ever heard of! And you know what; I just had a great idea!"
"Why do I suddenly feel so scared of this big idea of yours…?"
Valkyrie smiled evilly. "Because I'm planning to ask Ghastly and Erskine what these embarrassing stories of yours are. I'll also ask them how to use them against you too."
"Yes I would, and I'll even help them out by spreading some of these stories to the Sanctuary."
"If you do, I won't tell you about the case. "
"But that isn't fair! You shouldn't tempt a girl like that and then take it away without a reason!"
"Speak for yourself. You're hardly a girl at all."
"Shut up Skulduggery."
"So you don't want to know more about your doppelganger?" At this Valkyrie whipped her head around and glared at Skulduggery.
"Of course I want to know! Now tell me more." Valkyrie ordered with a huff.
Skulduggery sighed before continuing. "No one has gotten an actual look at her yet. All we know so far is that she has a striking resemblance to you, has short hair, dresses differently, and also seems to possess a strange power."
"The power to turn people into stone." At this, Valkyrie stared at Skulduggery in shock and surprise, half expecting him to say that he was pulling her leg. He didn't, and continued instead.
"It's true, because a week ago, two Sanctuary agents named Simon Blake and Spider Castro confronted her, thinking that she was you. According to Blake, they approached the doppelganger and she refused to speak to them, saying that they got the wrong person when they called out to her with your name. Castro was rather impatient, and kept insisting that 'you drop the act and stop acting so high and mighty'. This made her rather mad, and before they could react, she turned around and punched Castro in the jaw, yelling at him to just leave her alone."
"Castro didn't like the punch and was about to fight her when he started turning into stone from where he was punched. Blake was confused and both tried to slow the process down, but it failed, since Castro eventually turned into a statue. Blake reported being horrified at the sight of his partner turning into a statue, and the girl became upset too, and said, 'I'm so sorry. I swear I didn't mean it! I just can't control myself!.' Then with those words said, she fled the scene."
Valkyrie was silent for a while after hearing this, and then spoke softly, repeating the girl's words out loud. "'I'm so sorry. I swear I didn't mean it! I just can't control myself!' Can it be she's just a new sorcerer unaware of how to control her powers?" At this Skulduggery shook his head.
"I interviewed Blake, and he told me that the girl seemed to be an Elemental since they spotted her manipulating the air around her before the confrontation. He also managed to look at her face, and recalls that her eyes are grey, and seems to be blind in her right eye too. Other than that, he didn't spot any other distinctive features."
Once again, Valkyrie lapsed into a thoughtful silence once more as she contemplated those words. The rest of the journey was spent in silence as Skulduggery drove them to the Sanctuary, where they got out and were greeted with the pleasant sight of Ghastly. "Hey Ghastly," Valkyrie said, plastering a smile on her face as she tried to keep her worries from showing. After all, Ghastly had enough burdens of his own trying to find Tanith and purge the Remnant in her.
Ghastly smiled at the sight of the duo, and was just about to greet them back when a sorcerer came dashing around the corner, nearly colliding into Ghastly himself.
"Sorry sir! I'm so sorry Elder Bespoke!" The unfortunate red headed sorcerer exclaimed in apology, while Valkyrie and Skulduggery tried their best not to laugh at Ghastly's strained expression as the young mage fussed over him in an attempt to make up for the near collision. It took numerous tries from Ghastly to stop the sorcerer from going on with his futile attempts, and when the young mage finally realized that Ghastly wasn't hurt, he looked relieved. He was about to walk off before he dashed back suddenly to the amusement of Valkyrie and Skulduggery who were trying their best to stifle their laughter.
"Elder Bespoke, Detectives Pleasant and Cain, I forgot to inform you that the doppelganger of Detective Cain has been spotted fighting with Tanith Low and Billy Ray – Sanguine." At this, all three exchanged looks of shock and surprise since they had not expected the doppelganger, not to mention Tanith and Sanguine in Haggard.
"Ghastly, we'll go get Tanith now. And in the meantime, we'll try to get the doppelganger too." Skulduggery called over his shoulder, reassuring Ghastly even as he dashed back to the Bentley with Valkyrie hot on his heels.
"Good luck! And I'll send a pair of Cleaver along too!" Ghastly called out, watching anxiously as the Bentley screeched out of the street, on its way to get Tanith and Valkyrie's doppelganger.
"Bring her back for me guys. Bring my Tanith back," Ghastly whispered, hurrying back into the Sanctuary with the intent to get the Cleavers.
And it's done! Would you believe me if I said this story took me one year to write, cos I was rather scared to write it out, and also unsure of response. Just hope you guys loved this! Review please!