"Krel!! Are you freaking kidding me? I need my computer for homework!" Aja stormed into my room, demanding, "You better be able to put it back together by tomorrow morning. I have to take it to school to work on an essay, and I can't have it in pieces!"
Rolling my eyes, I turned around to reassure her. "I just needed to test one of its components on another thing I built for the tech club. When it's done, I'll put it back where it was and you'll have your computer back."
"You took apart my entire laptop for one piece," Aja muttered, crossing her arms. Shaking her head worriedly, she said, "I trust that you know how to put the whole thing back together without losing any memory or functionality, little brother. Don't let me down."
"You worry too much, sister," I patted her shoulder, "You're talking to an expert. Speaking of which, I have to get going if I want to meet the tech club on time, so I'll be back later." I placed the piece in my backpack, then waved at Aja.
Pushing a smile and rolling her eyes, she waved back. "Stay safe, Krel! Let me know when you're leaving to come home."
"Okay Mother," I teased my sister.
Making a face, she narrowed her eyes. "I just want to make sure you're still able to get my computer together again."
"That's cold," I shot back jokingly.
At the meeting of our tech club, the piece I borrowed from Aja's computer worked perfectly. It was just as I expected, so of course I was proud of it.
"Dude, you're so cool for bringing it to us! We definitely needed it and we can use it at the fair tomorrow," Seamus pounded my shoulder appreciatively.
Wait a minute, we were using this specific piece? That was not a good sign.
She'd probably kill me.
"I thought we were just testing this piece and we were bringing it in from somewhere else," I reluctantly admitted, "This is from Aja's laptop she needs tomorrow."
"Oh no, we need this if we want any chance at beating Pasadena High tomorrow. Is there any chance we can return it to her after the fair?" Seamus asked, gaining the attention from the rest of the club.
As I saw everyone's head turn at me, silently begging me with their eyes, I bit down on my lip nervously. I couldn't do this to Aja. She needed it for an essay.
"I'm sorry, I promised to reassemble her computer again tonight. She's counting on using it at school tomorrow, so I wouldn't be able to give it to her afterwards," I half-way mumbled, not looking up at anyone to see their faces.
"Oh man, what are we supposed to do tomorrow then? We're screwed."
"Where else can we get it by tomorrow?"
"Delivery takes like two days minimum."
"Crap. We're losin' the contest."
Shaking his head, Seamus offered a fist bump as he handed the piece back to me with the other hand. "It's fine, man. Thanks for letting us try it though."
"Club dismissed, dudes."
Leaving quickly before anyone could try and persuade me to change my mind, I made my way out to the streets in defeat.
Looking out, I realized the sun was already gone. It was just the stars and moon lighting the streets dimly.
At least Aja wouldn't be disappointed in me.
Oh right, I remembered, I had to text her that I was on my way back.
As I reached for my phone while walking across the bridge, I heard my name being whispered.
I would've been lying to myself if I didn't say that I jumped at the deep voiced whisper. Lowering my phone from my gaze slowly, I peered down from the bridge to see a pile of broken stone.
A small blue glow from the stone pile caught my eye, and I leaned a little further past the bridge to try and see what it was. Maybe a cell phone? I didn't recognize the voice at all.
When the voice echoed out my name again, I jumped back in surprise. It was creepy, but it piqued my interest a little. The sound quality from its speaker was very good, considering the small object it must've been from. The voice didn't sound like it was from a phone or recorder, but it echoed a whisper strongly enough for me to hear from the distance. Quickly walking around the bridge, I used the sloped walls to slide into the dry canal.
Wait, what if this was a trick to try and kidnap me? Now I'd have a difficult time getting out from the canal, and—
I noticed the blue light glowing a little more strongly from under the stones. Looking around to ensure I wasn't being tricked, there was not a single person in sight. I reached to rescue the object and pull it out from under the heavy rocks.
It was a metal compass-looking thing with a blue glow that had faded when I picked it up.
Accompanying my lifting of the compass object was a harsh sound of metal being hit. A vent cover smack onto the floor of the canal, and what proceeded were heavy, nearly stomping footsteps from behind me. Spinning around, I shoved the object in my pocket. I could feel my heart sinking to my throat as two people approached.
I couldn't see very well in the darkness of the night, but I was pretty sure the people standing in front of me were quite unusual in shape. This definitely was a trick, I thought in a panic. The unusually large, hairy one growled, and I almost felt myself freeze in place.
I realized I should've texted Aja that I was on my way so she would've known to start figuring out I was taking way too long to get home and tell our parents and call the police so they could arrest the kidnappers.
Six eyes glowed yellow on one figure, and the larger figure had two incredibly circular eyes, way bigger than I've ever seen on a living being. They towered over me, and I slowly began backing away as fearful tears began glazing over my eyes.
"Greetings Master Krel. You have been chosen. The amulet of daylight challenges you to ascend to the most sacred of—“
Terror caught in my throat as soon as the adrenaline hit me, and in result I bolted off at the highest speed I'm sure I've ever done. My shoulders burned from the heavy backpack, and my legs, inexperienced with such athletic activity, were beginning to seethe with pain. My chest tightened from the heaving of my breath as I continued to push myself to run as hard as I could until I was able to reach the upper ridge of the canal. My sneakers skidded up at the side as I reached and pulled at the concrete desperately, then able to hoist myself over the edge and out onto the street.
Jumping back up to continue running, I heard my name being called from behind me.
"Krel! Come back!!" I heard from behind me as I ran to my house as fast as I could.
I turned back a couple times in fear, only hearing the voices, but not seeing the figures anymore. I got to my house, screaming and banging on the door for someone to open up.
Aja quickly opened the door, looking bewildered from my screams probably and yanked me inside. "Little brother, what's wrong? Are you hurt?!" She asked, checking me over for injuries. I didn't even realize I had tears running down my face until she wiped them away with her sleeve.
"T-There were two guys! Things? I don't know! In the canal they called my name and I think they tried to kidnap me and they had weird shapes and I don't even know if they're human! There were six eyes on one of them, and they glowed, Aja! Yellow glowing eyes, like a monster!" I rambled to her, watching my grandfather rush into the hall with urgency.
"Varvatos will crush these kidnappers and they will die a slow and painful death!" Varvatos Vex, my grandfather, yelled with intensity.
Aja's worried expression turned to perplexed. "Krel, six eyes?"
"Six glowing yellow eyes, Aja!" I reminded her, and as I was yelling with my heaving breath, it came to my mind that I might've sounded a little delusional.
"Varvatos, I think the suspects were wearing weird masks to hide their faces! We should call the police," Aja told him, looking back at me.
"The police are weaklings in comparison to the blustering storm of Varvatos Vex!" He claimed, "I shall handle a matter of such with my own bare hands!"
Shaking her head at our grandfather's violent-minded intensity, Aja pulled me along by the arm as she went to find her cell phone. "Are you okay, Krel? Did they hurt you?" She asked.
"No, they didn't luckily, but they knew my name somehow. They knew my full name, and were growling like animals! Or I think that was just the larger one?"
"Well, that's creepy. You definitely aren't going anywhere by yourself anymore," Aja shuddered, turning around to pick up her phone and call the police.
I wanted to argue against that, being that she was only a year older than I was, but I didn't want to be caught by myself again with those creeps. At least if I had Aja around, they might be less likely to come across me again. She was the best at martial arts, so even if they tried to hurt either of us, I know they’d both be out cold.
After Detective Scott came over to take my information and statement, I was practically exhausted by everything. Still, I had one more thing to do, and even in the most crazy of times, I wouldn’t forget.
“So, is everything okay, Krel? I know that was crazy, so if you’re afraid of being alone in your room like when you were younger, I can grab my sleeping bag and stay for the night,” Aja offered, softening her tone.
Laughing a bit, I reassured her I was okay (and mature enough) to be alone. I still wanted to reassemble her laptop for her. If I couldn’t use the part for the tech club’s competition, I had to at least put it to use for my sister.
Dragging my backpack into my room, I intended to begin working on it right away. That was until a big blue stone hand slapped over my mouth and the door locked behind me.