Chapter 1: Return to the Kingdom
“You have to meet with Harry Stafford, he's the new leader of the Whitechapel gang, the Clinkers that remains standing against the Blighters” Henry told the twins as they sat across from him in his Curio shop. The twins recently arrived to London with eager hearts to free London from Starrick’s and the Templars clutches.
“Why is he the new leader?” Jacob asked with a sigh of irritation. Jacob had plans on starting his own gang to eliminate the Blighters that are a strong bolt in the Templar control on London, he did not seem the need for the alliance of another gang that couldn't even keep its own territory safe.
“Because his father was killed nearly 2 weeks ago, under the leader of the Blighter’s Roth order. He will wish to see the Blighters fall, they have a number of men that still live in other boroughs that would be willing to join the Rooks. If you gain his trust and alliance you will have connections throughout the city. His family is very well respected in the Underworld of London. The Rooks will surely thrive with some of their connections.” Henry explained to the twins, casually gaining an eye roll from Jacob who clearly still objected the idea even with Henry’s vast knowledge of this gang. Jacob sighed with a sense of defeat as Evie glared at him.
“Well let’s get a meeting then.” Jacob said in a dry tone.
Lenora found herself stepping on to the platform of the Whitechapel train station with a sense of relief being lifted from her shoulders. It was just as she remembered breathing in the dirty air of London. “Oh how I miss this.” She thought to herself. No one could ever truly understand her love for this place. Whitechapel was stricken poverty, crime and dirt but this was where she was born and raised. This was her borough, this was home. The moment her feet hit that platform she knew she was home, this is where she would stay.
“No more running.” She whispered to herself as her feet began to move. The fabric of her black skirt brushed the dirty tiled floor of the train platform. She stepped to the side straightening out the black and purple bodice of her dress that clung to her like a second skin, a few train employees piled her suitcases and trunks to the side of the platform. Her long black curls that were pulled out of her face but still hung down to the middle of her back bounced as she moved looking for an escort. Lenora’s gaze met 3 men on the end of the platform dressed in a red uniform she recognized from a year ago before she left. Bringing back some haunting memories. She closed her eyes quickly and took three deep breaths trying to forget the memories that were haunting her when she heard a man clear his throat. She shot her eyes opened and was met with a men standing in front of her with a black and dark purple uniform on. A uniform she also recognized but one that brought comfort. The man that stood in front of her was a Clinker, a member of the gang her father ran out of Whitechapel.
“Good day Miss Stafford.” He greeted me as he tipped his cap to me.
“Hello.” I smiled back as I nodded to him. He looked familiar to her as she began to examined his face, he surely was a Clinker she knew the name of as she searched her head for it.
“We best be gettin’ on.” He said to the four Clinker accompanying him as he pointed to the trunks and suitcases. My father sent 5 Clinkers to pick me up from the train station was a rarity, usually one would do.
“George!” Lenora cheered when she remembered his name. He had grown up in the last year since the last time she saw him. “How are you?” He was a few years older than Lenora but it seemed like her had grown into his features. She was taken back by how handsome she found him now.
“I’ve been okay, I’m happy to see you back Lenora. But we really must be going.” He stressed as he glance in the Blighters way that were now focus on their direction noticing the large amount of Clinkers. As the other Clinkers gathered her belongings George escorted Lenora to the carriage waiting outside the train station. She found herself confused on the rush and the slight panic in Georges step. She wouldn’t think she’d be aloud back home if it wasn't safe for her to do so. Her father was protective in that sense.
She lived a normal childhood having two loving parents, and two annoying older brothers. They had always lived atop of the pub her father owned and ran, their life seemed perfect for a family in Whitechapel. Growing up Lenora had anything she ever desired and never questioned where anything came from. Her mother always bought her the finest dresses, hats and shoes, dressing her as if she was the Princess. Lenora’s childhood changed when she first felt what losing someone she loved felt like. Her mother, at the tender age of 8 passed away from an illness that was never really explained to her. With time she healed, remembering those 8 loving years she had with her mother but to only meet that same feeling when she was 12 again, when her eldest brother Jesse was killed in an act to show who ran London. This was the same time she found out her fathers true job, he wasn't just the local pub owner but the local gang leader. As she thinks back to the time she could believe she missed all the indications that there was something more going on then just him owning a pub. The constant dealings in the backrooms, hush whispers among the men in the pub. Her father also ran a number of gambling facilities & fight clubs across Whitechapel with some in Lambeth and Southwark as well.
She never wanted to ever admit she was as damaged as she was after experienced her brothers death, she grew thinking that time again would heal the wound on losing another loved one. Time did eventually heal that wound as well but it had help. It was the most recent incident, one that had happened just over a year ago that forced her away from this place she called home. The one wound she never knew if time would ever be able to heal.
Henry and the twins walked in to a decent sized pub called the King’s Corner, Henry approached the barkeep as he pointed to an empty booth that was in the farthest corner of the pub that was tucked away from the view of prying eyes. Henry motioned for the twins to follow him into the booth. They pushed in the booths bench as they awaiting the gang leaders arrival. Jacob tapped his finger on the table as his impatience grew waiting for the leader when the door behind the bar swung open. Two men, large men in matching purple and black uniforms came out followed by another man, who was taller than the men that guard him but had a more slender built. His leather jacket match the colours the other two were wearing. The chatter in the pub stopped as the other looked upon the man, his boots clicked on the floor as he made his way to the booth. The chatter began again as he reached the table taking the side of the booth opposite to the three assassins.
“Good day Mr. Green.” He greeted with a nodded to Henry before continuing. “Now what is this meeting about that you requested, I am a busy man.” His gaze fell upon the other two that were accompanying Henry.
“First I want to send my deepest condolences to you and your sister at this time.” Henry began to explain himself. Jacob perked up at the mention of a sister, Henry did not mention a sister before hand. “Secondly, I come with associates that carry the same wish your father had, free London from the control of the Blighters and the forces behind them.”
“Hello, I am Evie Frye.” Evie spoke first before anyone else could. Introducing herself and her brother. “And this is my twin brother Jacob Frye.” She pointed to Jacob as he gave a smile to the gang leader that sat across from him with a slight raised eyebrow.
“Hello, I am Harry Stafford. Leader of the Clinkers.” He introduced himself with a small sense of arrogance in his tone, like they should already know of him. Harry stood about 6’5”, slender built, his nearly black hair bought out the pale skin tone he had more.
“We would like to help get rid of the Blighters, my brother wants to start his own gang. We have the resources to train the men to fight well.” Evie explained to the leader.
“I’ve heard.” He hummed as he sipped on a pint that was placed in front of him nearly a minute ago. “I’ve heard the whispers on the street of a new gang attempting to start up, with the backing of some Assassins. What are they called again?”
“The Rooks.” Jacob hissed through his teeth, he did not like feeling like her was being talked down to. He stared Harry down in the eyes as he began to speak again.
“Ahh, Yes. That’s it. The Rooks. And what do you need me for then?” He asked with a friendly tone of curiosity in his voice.
“We would like to join forces with you, you have our back, we will have yours. With our training, your resources I believe we could crush the Blighter’s control over the city.” Jacob explained trying to be friendly to the leader. Harry’s attention turned to the entrance to the pub as a black carriage pulled up and a Clinker entered and approached one of the men guarding the booth, he whispered something and turned back out to the street. The man that took the message leant down to Harry and whispered. “She’s here sir.” to him.
“Well, I am in. Whatever it takes to destroy the Blighters I will help with.” Harry accepted our proposal of an alliance. “But if you do excuse me, my sister has just arrived. We shall resume this meeting at a later date as I have to inform my sister of our fathers death.” Harry explained as he got up from the table, shaking Jacob and Henry’s. He headed out the entrance of the pub opening the carriage door, a small hand grasped his as he helped the women out of the carriage. As Jacob got up from the table the women stepped from the carriage and Jacob got the first look of her. She had silky long black hair that were in loose curls that shimmered in the sun, her complexion matched her brothers. He was completed breathless with seeing this beauty women held.
“You never mentioned a sister Greenie!” Jacob laughed at Henry as he stood admiring the women.
“That would be Lenora Stafford, the Clinkers and people of Whitechapel have a nickname for her you might her from time to time.” Henry explained to the twins as Harry took his sister by the arm and lead her along the streets to the back of the pub.
“And what is that?” Evie asked curiously.
“The Princess of Whitechapel.” Henry smiled at Evie. “She carries her fathers attitude towards this borough. She sees the beauty where people see scum.” Jacob took one last glance at her as her figure disappeared behind the building. Jacob had no idea what the feeling was that was building up in his stomach when he looked upon her but he knew he had to get to know her.
Harry lead Lenora up to their flat above the pub, through the back door the used mostly. the Clinkers that met her at the station followed with her trunks and suitcases as Henry had two brute Clinkers follow him as his father always did. Lenora noted that she thought it was odd as it was usually reserved for the leader of the gang. Lenora feet carried her up the stairs as Harry opened the door for her, the two brutes staying posted at the entrance to the home. She sat down her black parasol down next to a bench by the back door, She pressed her way into the house looking around for a sight of her father Harry followed her with a somber expression on his face, knowing the news he was about to deliver to his sister.
“Where is father?” Lenora asked as they made their way into the parlour room.
“Please sit down Lenny.” Harry motion to the chesterfield.
“What’s wrong Harry? I can read you like a book.” She questioned her obviously saddened brother. She sat down next to her now sitting brother when he dropped his eyes to the ground not being able to look his sister in the eyes when he delivered the news, knowing what it was about to do to her. In that moment she realized why she had been called home.
“Nearly two weeks ago, father was killed. This is why I wrote you to come home. I am sorry Len, I couldn’t tell you in a letter.” Harry’s voice shook when he spoke as if he was holding back tears.
“What happened?” Lenora asked in a dry tone, throwing Harry off.
“Roth ordered him dead. It was an ambush on his carriage.” He quietly explained to his sister as her eyes began to fill with tears. Ambushes. A thing that tugged at her heart. “I wasn't there. He was shot and could not recover.”
“You’re the leader now?” She asked as she began to cry as she fell into her brothers arms, sobbing on his shoulder.
“Yes, Len.” He replied, patting her head in a soothing motion. “We may have a sliver lining, a new gang is forming. I have hope.” He attempted to sound reassuring to his now distraught sister as she sobbed into his jacket. “I am scared as hell Lenny, believe me. But I know everything will turn out for the good, but I needed you here and not in some poshy place called Brighton. I miss him everyday Len.” Harry soothed his sister as she began to cease her crying for now. Her sparkling blue eyes were now red and puffy, her pale skin red with her cries. Harry lead his sister up and lead her to her bedroom down the short hallway off the parlour. She began to sniffle again attempting to hold back more cries. Harry opened the bedroom door as she looked around. It was exact as she remembered. Walls plastered in a dark purple wall paper, gold painted finished furniture and the centre of attention, her bed that was painted gold with a black canopy that hungover the four post that stood eight feet from the ground, the black satin linens with grey paisley detailing through the fabric dressed the bed. Lenora sat upon her bed as Harry looked at his sister.
“Why does everyone I love die Harry? Am I cursed?” She said after a moment of reflection. Harry was taken back by her question and rushed to her side as he sat on the bed.
“I am still here. You are not cursed sister, you will find love again. Get some rest, I will have Mary bring in your clothing and get it all put away.” Harry spoke softly to his sister. He understood how over protective their father was of her and he promised him to continuing to look out for her to his father before his father passed. He planned on making sure if anyone would be alright it would be Lenora. He got up from his position, he placed his hand on his sisters shoulder. “Everything will be okay, I promise.” She tried to reassure her again. He turned on his heels and headed out of her bedroom to allow Lenora to be alone for a while in attempt for her to get some rest. She sat there for what felt like eternity starring at the wall across from her, not saying a word, not shedding a single tear as her mind wandered and screamed inside. She got up from her position and started undressing herself, still being silent. She finally found herself in her nightgown as she drew her curtains shut, unfortunately her windows looked out to the street so the carriages and chatter that was a the streets of Whitechapel still made it through the thin glass and fabric of the drapes, but it was okay as once she snuggled herself into her big bed and rested her face to the pillow she realized she would be crying herself to sleep tonight.
Chapter 2: Fight Club Adventures
She sat in front of her vanity mirror placing a bit of rogue to her full plump lips, attempting to forget the death that surrounds and that consumes her mind. Its been a week now since she has been home, barely leaving her bedroom. Slipping into her beige and navy blue bustle dress with a neckline that cut just above her breast, her skirt accented with navy blue satin ribbons. Pulling up her black leather gloves up to her elbows that met with the long lace sleeves that hung from her elbows. Before heading out she placed a black hat accented with black feathers and a white bow on her pinned up black hair. It was late into the afternoon already as she stepped out of the flats backdoor, carefully moving down the wooden staircase that lead to the courtyard behind the pub. She made her way to the front of the pub as the rare London sun shined down on her face, making her sparkling blue eyes sparkle a bit more that usual. She entered her fathers pub, a place she hasn't entered in just over a year. A place that was filled with happy memories with her all her family that has passed, especially the memories that included him. The few Clinkers that also occupied the pub glanced upon Lenora when she entered, all nodding with a greeting for her. Knowing what she would of just learnt the week before, they all felt a sense of sadness for her. Lenora’s gaze darted around the room, looking for her brother noticing him in the far corner booth that her father once used to conduct business in with three people that she assumed were some of his contacts. She sauntered over to a bar stool at the bar as her eyes met upon one of the occupants of the booth her brother was at. She noticed his strikingly handsome features even with the distance between them. His gaze fell upon her when a small smirk form at the corner of his mouth, she adjusted her head to hide her cheeks that were turning red.
“Miss. Stafford.” A Clinker that guarded my brother interrupted her admiring. “Your brother requests your presence at his table.” She nodded and followed him to the table, Harry pushed into the booth as she joined them in the booths bench.
“Sister!” Harry said with conviction. “I would like you to meet our new allies to the Clinkers; this you know is Henry Green.” He pointed to the Indian man that she recognized from the few time her father introduced them. She nodded to him as Harry continued “This is Evie Frye and her brother Jacob Frye, the leader of the Rooks.” He introduced them to her. “This is Lenora, my sister.”
“It’s very nice to meet you Miss. Stafford.” Evie smiled to her as her twin was smiling as well; scanning over her face, admiring Lenora’s beauty.
“Please call me Lenora. So is it your gang that i’ve seen around wearing the green and yellow uniforms?” She asked the boy twin with a smile on her face making eye contact with his hazel orbs.
“Yes, Green happens to be my favourite colour!” He said with a defensive tone, his sister was laughing as blush formed on his face.
“I happen to love the colour green as well.” She said with an assuring smile.
“Well then hopefully you will be seeing a lot more green around than red.” Jacob said with a cocky smile upon his face. “I plan on getting rid of every Blighter in this city.”
“That reminds me Lenny, you are not to leave the grounds of the house or pub with out a chaperone.” Harry addressed his sister in a demanding tone she did not take kindly too.
“Is that really necessary?” She looked at him with a glare in her eyes. Being treated like a helpless child was not something she cared for.
“Yes, it is necessary. I am sure the Blighters are well aware you are back.” Harry empathized. He wasn't going to budge on this rule.
“Ridiculous.” She muttered under her breath, earning a smirk from Jacob for her defiance.
“Lenora, enough with the sassy attitude. Do not even think of disobeying me on this one.” He shouted to his sister gaining an eye roll from her. “Do you forget the whole reason why you were sent away!” Harry snapped with such a harsh tone and words that Lenora could feel the tears well up in her eyes. "Shit!" He muttered realizing what he said.
“It was very lovely meeting the two of you, but please excuse me.” She said to the guests at the table before getting up and running behind the bar to the door that lead up to her home.
“My apologies that you had witness that out burst” Harry apologized to Henry and the twins.
“It’s fine” Evie reassured. “Henry had witnessed enough siblings spats between Jacob and I”
“She can be quite difficult, she’s never been one for rules.” Harry explained with a deep sigh, taking a drink of his ale like he was worried about something. “She barely listened to my father for rules and I am scared she will no obey me.”
“Sounds like someone I know.” Evie jabbed while giving Jacob a glaring stare.
“If its not to forward of me asking, why did your father send her away?” Jacob asked without trying to sound like he was intruding. Evie kicked him in the leg for this question under the table.
“Oh Mr. Frye, I am sure you will hear the story one day, but it is not my story to tell.” Harry stated with a sadness in his eyes.
“If either one of us is able to help you please let us know.” Jacob stated. “We can spare Rooks if needed.”
“Yes, I should go talk to my sister, I said somethings I shouldn't have. It was a pleasure having drinks with you, feel free to stop by any time. Drink will be on the house.” Harry got up from the booth. “Oh and Frye.” He said turning to Jacob. “If you are a gambling man, we run a few fight clubs.” Harry finished as he arched his eyebrow to Jacob as he formed a smirk on his own face. His guards followed him up the stairs that Lenora ran retreated too. The twins and Henry proceeded out of the pub to the streets of Whitechapel. Full of begging starving children and streets lined with brothels and pubs. Jacob came to a realization on why Harry cared so greatly for the freedom of his borough. This was his home, this was his sisters home and he couldn't even let his sister leave the house without armed guards. The hurt in Lenora’s eyes as Harry spoke to her hurt Jacobs heart in a way he never felt before. Jacob wandered with his sister and Henry through the streets back to the shop as his mind wandered on Lenora. She had such a different look to her, her black hair that complimented her snowy skin tone. Her blue eyes sparkled in the sunlight like diamonds, the way her small nose came to a point at the end, her high cheek bones and heart shaped face.
“Jacob!” Evie screamed as she hit him.
“What?” Jacob snapped back at her, breaking his day dreaming.
“Did you not hear a word I said?” She asked looking at him with a dumfounded look on her face as if she was talking to him for a while now, him completely ignoring her.
“No, guess not.” He laughed as he smiled to her.
“What were you doing? Daydreaming?” She asked him rolling her eyes in the processes.
“No, simply thinking.” He snapped at her in a defensive tone.
“Right.” Evie said as Jacob went back into his daydreaming as they reached Henry’s shop. He went to a chair and slumped in down into the seat, placing his flat cap over his eyes for a short nap.
Hours have passed since Lenora and Harry’s very public argument that followed with a silent dinner, but not without him attempting to explain his words and actions. Lenora completely ignoring it. After dinner she retreated back into her bedroom, organizing her clothes until she heard him leave for the night. She quickly slipped out of her night gown she was wearing and slipped on a beige button up blouse. Pulling on a pair of black form fitting trousers she had, finishing it with a black leather under bust corset. She let her long black curly hair hang down her back. Finishing with a pair of knee high laced leather boots and a leather jacket that hung to her mid thighs. She opened the bedroom door and slipped out of the back door to the below courtyard, a few Clinkers hung around the corner leading to the pub so she ran the opposite way, making her way to the street. As she made her way down the cobblestone street her heels clicking against the moist stones, finally reaching for the alleyway she was looking for. As she was behind a row of house she found the heavy wooden door, knocking on door with a heavy knock, the peep hole immediately opened.
“Name?” The voice behind the door asked.
“Lenora Stafford, hurry up and open the door.” She demanded, but before she could say anymore the door swung open and she was ushered in.
“I am very sorry to keep you waiting Miss. Stafford.” The door man that she recognized as the long time door keeper Bart apologized to her.
“That’s fine Bart. Nice to see you.” She greeted as she gave him a smile before making her way to the top of the staircase that lead to the area she was looking to join. Lenora stood at the top admiring the view of a place she missed. The Fight Club was one of her father’s gangs oldest establishments in the underworld part of London. She started making her way down the stairs as she eyed the ring she watched both her brother beat men to a bloody pulp in, more especially she watched him beat many men to a pulp here. Watching the fights was one of her favourite pass times. She pushed her way through the roaring crowd to the betting area, seeing an old friend standing in front of the large chalkboard with the bets. Before the man could turn around to see who was behind him she spoke to him.
“Well look who it is. Robert Topping.” She said forming a smirk on her face as he turned around to see who was speaking to him.
“Only the best bookie in all of London.” He joked to her. “Are my eyes playing tricks on me? Is that you Lenny?”
“The one and only.” She curtsied to him in a joking manner.
“The Princess of Whitechapel herself returns!” He said reaching in for a hug, rolling her eyes at the nickname he called her. “Its good to see you Len, I am sorry about your father.” He whispered to her.
“Thank you, so anything interesting going on tonight?” Lenora asked arching an eyebrow at Robert while she was holding her large pouch of money.
“A new guy is fighting tonight, he recently started his own gang. The Rooks?” Robert said pointing to the chalkboard, revealing his name.
“Jacob Frye, yes he’s working with my brother. Many bet on him?” She asked him looking at the names of his opponents.
“Not much at all.” He replied to her, she started fishing coins in her purse when she just passed the pouch to him.
“300 Pounds on him then.” She spoke much to Roberts surprise, as he noted it on his paper. Robert finished taking other bets as Lenora went over to the bar area and grabbed herself a pint. The dressing room doors swung open as she took her seat near the front of a view area from the bar that was a bit elevated for better viewing of the fight. Jacob exited through the door, stripped of his clothes on his top half of his body. Lenora took notice of his shilling he wore around his neck, the Rook tattoo that was on his chest leading to his shoulder. He was built with his broad shoulders and strong back muscles. As he stepped into the ring making the hair he had on his chest the trailed down below his trousers. As she admired the few she bit her bottom lip, instantly shaking her head of all the thoughts she had going on in her head.
The fight began with two men twice his size charging at Jacob, she watched him intensely seeing every hit he landed on his opponents, avoiding every single one thrown his way. He grabbed one of his opponents arms bring it behind him with such force she could hear the bones breaking from where she sat. He grabbed the second opponent by the shoulder ramming his own head into his opponents, knocking him out instantly. The match was called in Jacob’s favour as the crowd cheered at the new champion. She was quite intrigued by this mysterious new gang leader and his intense fighting skills. She enjoyed watch him fight. Lenora then got up from her spot and wandered over to Robert again to collect her winnings.
“Did you know something that no one else did?” Robert asked her as he handed her an even large pouch of money that she won.
“If I tell you my gambling secret, then I will have to kill you.” She winked to Robert as they both broke out into a laughter. Soon she felt a presence behind her as Robert looked over her shoulder.
“Ah, Mr. Frye. Your winnings.” Robert said passing Jacob another pouch of coins. Lenora turned her face to the gang leader standing now next to her as he glance down to see who Robert was talking to.
“Oh, Miss. Stafford. Hello, did not expect to see you here.” He stated with a surprised look on his face as the corner of his lip turned to a smile.
“Good Evening Mr. Frye. Why wouldn't I be here? It is my fight club.” She giggled at him, reminding him that her father’s gang ran it.
“Never took you as the fight club type, that’s all love.” He commented as he looked around the room.
“Oh but on the contrary, I use to spend almost every night here before I left. Didn’t I Robert?” She looked at Robert with her dazzling blue eyes Jacob was now admiring. Robert nodded as more people came to place bets on the next fight. “And you good sir, won me quite a bit of money tonight.”
“Oh did I?” He smiled to her as she patted her pouch on her hip. He noticed she wasn’t dressed in a fancy dress but was wearing trousers with high leather boots with a black corset over her blouse instead. “If I may ask, where are your guards?” She instantly remember Jacob was there when her brother informed her she would be needing guards to escort her places. Her smile turned to a frown as she realized he might rat on her.
“Looks like I lost them.” She attempted to act stupid, looking around her. Jacob started to laugh as she realized he wasn’t buying it. “Okay, okay. I snuck out. His rules are stupid anyways. Are you going to tell on me?”
“Only if you don’t join me for a drink?” He proposed as she smiled.
“You got yourself a deal.” She cheered as Jacob offered his arm and lead her to the bar area she once occupied, she sat at the empty table she watched Jacob fight from so they had a good view of the next fight while the drank their drinks. Jacob came back to the table with two pints of ale. Lenora grabbed hers taking a sip from it. “Thank you Mr. Frye.”
“Please call me Jacob.” He insisted.
“Well only if you call me Lenora.” She agreed to his request.
“As you wish.” He smiled to her as he took in her face and how her loose black curls laid down passed her shoulders. “Are you happy to be back home?”
“Yes, and no. It would of been better if it was not on these circumstances. Nor the position the Clinkers are in.” She complained. “Or all these damn rules. I’ve never been one for rules.”
“I’ve never been a fan of them myself either love.” He confessed as she felt a blush on her cheeks form when he used “love” for the second time. She passed it off that he was friendly. “And I plan on taking care of that Blighter issue so don't you worry your pretty head, you will soon be able to go out on your own again.” He said taking a swig of his drink.
“London needs another gang against the Blighters since they have slaughtered them all except the Clinkers.” Lenora stressed as she took a sip. “Up until a year ago there was the Clinkers and another gang out of the Strands called The Cavalier that were against the Blighters. But the Blighters killed them all.” She held back from tears as her mind came to who she lost.
“It will take 100 men to kill me.” He laughed as he finished his drink. She smiled into hers as she found his cocky attitude endearing.
“Shit!” She cursed as she looked up to the staircase noticing her brother coming down the stairs. “I have to get out of here.” She pointed to her brother as Jacob noticed.
“Here, I can get you out.” He stood up offering his arm to her again as she finished her drink. As she stood up he wrapped on of his arms around her waist, which made her whole body shiver. With his other free hand he held her close to his chest and pressed her against the wall in the crowd of people as her brother walked pass them not noticing her with his two guards. Once his back was to them Jacob lead her up the staircase quickly. The doorman opened the door for them and they made it to the alleyway.
“Oh my God, thank you Jacob. I would of never gotten out of there if it hadn't been for you.” She thanked him as she could feel her heart pounding. She couldn’t figure out if it was from the trill of almost getting caught or how close she got to Jacob in those short moments. She could smell his scent as he pressed his body into hers. Gunpowder, dirt and ale. Some how she found it intoxicating.
“Not a problem at all love.” He assured with a smile tipping his flat cap to her.
“I must be heading home now, thank you for the drink and the escape Jacob.” She thanked him again, as she went to turn down the alley.
“Allow me to walk you home, to make sure you arrive safe. Its late.” He insisted as he offered his arm to her again.
“That would be lovely.” She said as she took his arm again. “So Jacob, where are you and your sister from?”
“Crawley, a small town just south of here.” He explained. “Bloody boring compared to London.”
“I am familiar with Crawley, had to pass through there to get to Brighton.” She interjected.
“I heard Brighton is nice.” Jacob assumed.
“It is, I was not able to enjoy much, My aunt insisted I had a chaperone everywhere I went. Which in turn was my cousin who is a bloody bore.” She complained remembering the frustration she felt while being there. “I am sorry that was rude for me to go on like that.”
“Oh thats quite okay, I understand completely.” He smiled to her.
“Your parents still in Crawley?” She asked wanting to know more about him.
“No, my father died recently as well. My mother died in child birth so I never met her.” He confessed to her, she felt sad for him as she remembered the pain of losing her parents.
“So we are both in the dead parents club then?” She joked easing the tension in her.
“That we are.” He laughed as he looked down to see her eyes sparkling in the moon light. They came up on the courtyard she snuck out of sometime ago. “Looks like we have reached our destination.”
“Looks like it.” She sighed as she looked at the stair case. “Thank you again for your help tonight Jacob.”
“It was my pleasure. I do hope to see you again soon.” He tipped his hat to her one more time. “Goodnight Lenora.” He grabbed her hand and brought it to his lips placing a small kiss on her knuckles.
“Goodnight Jacob.” She smiled at him as she turned to walk up the stairs to her flat to hide her blush. As she made her way to the top she looked back down to the courtyard to see Jacob still standing there as she placed her hand on the door handle. He tipped his cap once again as she opened the door. As she closed the door she looked one more time, Jacob now no wheres to be in sight as she slipped down to her bedroom. She closed her door as she started dressing into her nightgown again. A feeling formed in her stomach like butterflies, no realizing what they were from.
Chapter 3: Invitations
She stood in front of her closet door staring into an array of clothing. She spotted one of her favourite black skirts; the skirt was slimming and only held a small bustle in the back and form fitting to the rest of her lower body. The waist down the front to of her knees the fabric was a dark grey almost black with white pin strips vertically down. The skirt finished off with the knee down and back of the dress a black silk flow, finalized with a black bow on the butt of the skirt. She paired it with a lighter grey ruffled blouse, her corset clenching in her already small waist. Mary their housekeeper, helped her into her lace and leather black heeled boots that came to her calf. She had her hair pulled back in to a low pony tail allowing some of her curls to fall beside her face and finished the look with a small ladies top hat, fixed with a slight tilt on her head. She stepped out of her bedroom and grabbed her trusted parasol and heading down to the pub where she knew her brother would be waiting for her to have breakfast, or lunch for this matter as he was already up for hours by now. She had become quite accustomed to the way her Aunt had her socializing in Brighton, her aunt hoping for her to meet a husband but she had no such luck. Rise at 11am, get dressed, eat. Then leave for a tea some where's with her Aunt, then dinner at 7pm followed by 2 different parties she would be dragged too. Other than those outings she was not allowed out without someone. She had to have the appeal she came from actual money and not some slum in London that lived off crime money.
She entered the bar seeing Harry sitting at the usual table as he waved her over, seeing her enter the pub. Lenora sauntered over sliding into the circular booth so that her back was towards the wall. "Good Morning." She said to Harry.
"Oh she speaks! And it's the afternoon now Len." He joked with her waving his hand to the bar maiden to fetch us tea and food. Shortly after she dropped off our tea cup and a fresh pot of tea for them.
"So how are things?" She asked with emphasis.
"Not good, not going lie to ya Lenny. Since fathers death we've lost many people, areas in Whitechapel are being seized by the Blighters and we are simply not that strong to keep them away. The areas we have now are protected but this Rexford Kaylock is giving me a real run for my money." Harry stressed the situation, her realizing the situation for more greater than she thought.
"And what do you intend to do about it?" She smiled at him as the bar maiden came and delivered our food. She just ate eggs and toast with a small serving of bacon.
"That's were the Frye twins come in." He shook his finger in the air in exclamation. He became to talk in a more hush tone. "They are like Henry Green, Assassins." She remember her father telling her about Henry Green years ago. Telling her about the secrecy of his profession but to be aware they are allies instead of foe.
"Interesting." She smiled into her food. She suddenly remember the bracer Jacob was wearing last night when they sat and had a drink.
"And it just happened to be that Jacob wanted to start a gang, and came here once established to make sure we were on his side." He was still almost whispering. "I know most people want us to take over again but it's impossible, they have skills we do not possess. We have connections they happen to need so I see as it as a win for not only just Whitechapel but all of London." Harry seemed more wise beyond his years since the last time she seen him.
"Who would have ever thought such wise words would of came out of that fowled mouth boy of a brother I had a few years ago." She chucked at him, remember his wildest brawling days at the fight club before she left for Brighton. "May I ask a question without being to forward?"
"Len, your not at aunties house any longer. No need for you to be poshy and asking before speaking bull." He rolled his eyes at her. He had no particular fondness of the rich snobby folk. Yes they may have money but they give just as much back into Whitechapel citizens, unlike how the rest of London seems to forget about them.
"Right, anyways then. Why do you not have a wife yet? Are you courting anyone? Engaged? Details please?" She smiled with her sly smile. She read people fairly well and she could tell the topic slightly bothered him.
"No time I suppose." He shrugged his shoulders.
"No one is in the picture at all?" He nodded his head no to her question. "Ou matchmaking." She clapped her hands together after she pushed her plate away.
"Len, no." He looked at her pleading. He narrowed his blue eyes at her.
"Harry, shush. I know many respectable ladies in Whitechapel area. They aren't all whores you know?" She laughed at his surprise by her language. "If I'm not mistaken, the Clinkers beginning of autumn party is approaching?"
"Yes it is Lenny." He stared blankly at her knowing she was planning something then.
"We will find you a nice girl then." She stated.
"Len-" She cut him off before he could finish.
"Please let me plan it, pretty pleaseeee" She begged with a whine in her voice that caused Harry to squint his eyes. "I promise that if I need to leave I will make sure I am accompanied by a Clinker. It will give me something to do!" She continued to whine at him knowing he would give in.
"Alright." He accepted. "2 Clinkers!"
"Whatever you would like dear brother!" She smiled as he looked to the door and seen 3 people arriving in the pub. He then waived them over. The barmaid came over again to clear off all our plates and bring more tea as Lenora requested a peppermint tea for after her breakfast.
"Slide over make room, forgot to inform you of a meeting with the twins and Henry. You can stay." He motioned for her to slide over on the bench when the guards moved so that the three Assassins could get into the booth as well. They greeted each other with Jacob sliding in first sitting next to her in the spot she was just sitting.
"Good day Miss. Stafford, it's lovely seeing you again." He smiled at her giving her a slight nudge.
"You as well Mr. Frye." She giggled back at him.
"I am sorry we were not here sooner, my brother is a late rises." Evie apologized glaring at Jacob from the side.
"No problem at all Miss. Frye, seems like it's an occurrence between younger siblings we have in common." He laughed looking at Lenora. She shot him a dirty look while the twins and Henry laughed. "So shall we get to business?"
"Yes, I informed the twins about Rexford Kaylock." Henry started off with when Jacob cut in.
"Who won't be a problem for much longer for Whitechapel." He said confidently, which seemed to annoy Evie. Lenora still admiring his confidence in his skill.
"Sounds like excellent news." Harry exclaimed. Harry continued to talk to Henry and Evie about his contacts around the city giving a few names and addresses when Jacob spoke to Lenora.
"Peppermint tea?" He whispered to her.
"Yes, it's my favourite." She smiled taking a sip from it.
"Mine too." He smiled back. She quickly interrupted Harry's conversation remember she had a party to plan.
"Harry, I need you to find me two Clinkers so I can go out and start ordering what we will need for our party!" She reminded him. He seemed happy she remember and did not fight with him about needing protection.
"A party?" Jacob asked looking at me. "I happen to like parties."
"Yes, our annual autumn party. For many years my father has always hosted a day at the beginning of September as a day for the Clinkers to celebrate with a warm meal with their families and other Clinkers, we hold it at the fight club down the street here. No fighting takes place for the night, just card games, dancing and drink!” She explained. "You are all welcomed to attend this year."
"Sounds wonderful, we will be there." Jacob gleefully said.
"That is very kind of you." Evie stated.
“It will be quite fun” She shared with excitement. "So Harry? Two Clinkers." She napped her fingers at him as he gave her a glare.
"Looks like the Princess is back. Right." Harry waved his one of his guards and whispered in his ear. "Their going to find someone's who's not on duty or we can spare."
"I'll wait." She said as she tapped her fingers against the table. Harry looked back to the twins.
"I will set up a meeting with Clara O'Dea, an urchin child so you can meet." Harry told them smiling at them. "She's smart as a whip, and her urchins are the best for pickpockets and gathering information."
"Thank you Harry, that would be much appreciated." Evie nodded her head to him. Lenora noticed from the corner of her eye noticing Jacob staring at her intensely.
"I have no missions until later this evening, I would be glad to accompany you on your errands." Jacob suggested pulling a slight smirk from the corner of his lips. "So you don't have to spare any Clinkers of course." Harry shot a suspicious look to Jacob, as Evie raised an eyebrow at him. Harry finally spoke before Lenora could.
"That's a very kind offer, if Len doesn't-" She cut Harry off before he could be finished.
"That would be lovely." Lenora looked at Jacob with a huge grin.
"Do not go out of Whitechapel." Harry stressed to me with an aggressive tone, then looked to Jacob. "Do not take her out of Whitechapel."
"Understood." Jacob slightly hissed through his teeth as if he didn't like to be told what to do.
"Don't worry dear brother, I learnt my lesson the last time." She sassed back to him with an eye roll. "I will let you finish your meeting, grab my things from the house and meet you back down here Mr. Frye." He nodded to her as she turned to her brother. "Now move." She motioned her hands from him to scoot out of the booth so she could exit. As he moved out she did as well making her way to the door to the entrance of their flat.
The moment she mentioned her errands he had the urge to tell her he accompany here. He knew errands seem bloody boring but something about her would make him want to accompany to hell and back but he couldn't put his finger on it, He chalked it up that he just simply enjoyed her company as a friend. When she left the table and sauntered to the door behind the bar his eyes never left her and he hasn't paid attention to a word they have said since she left.
"Jacob?" Evie waved a hand in front of his face interrupting his daydream.
"What?" Jacob asked looking at her as she shook her head at him.
"The night of the party, you can spare some of your Rooks for patrol on the Clinkers territory so they can enjoy the party?" Evie snapped at him with a disapproval glare.
"Oh of course, I'd be happy to." Jacob agreed with her as he looked to Harry.
"Great, I must be off though. I have some other business to attend to." Harry stated as he got up from his seat. They all started to move from the booth as Jacob stayed lingering behind as he had to still meet Lenora down here. As Harry left Evie turned on her heels to him.
"What are you doing?" She hissed at him narrowing her eyes in a glare to him.
"What ever do you mean sister?" Jacob sassed back giving her a small shrug.
"Volunteering to take out Miss. Stafford?" Evie rose her eyebrow at him.
"I'm just trying to help." He told her as he gave her his signature smirk.
"Keep it in your pants!" She scorned him as she walk away throwing her hands up in defeat. He let out a chuckle as Lenora appeared in the door she went into.
She entered the pub, Jacob was smirking to Evie as she headed out the door, he was causally leaning against the table as his eyes turned to Lenora. Once his eyes laid upon her he straightened up his posture as she started towards him. She met him at the table when he offered her his arm.
"Shall we?" He grinned as she took his arm, she was impressed with how he was acting like a perfect gentleman.
"Let's." She giggled as he led her out of the pub. The first few moments of what her freedom felt like was wonderful. She took in her surroundings of the children running around the streets. "Be careful of the children. They are great pickpockets." She looked up to Jacob who's smile disappeared slightly.
"I learnt that on my first day here." He shook his head as she giggled. "Lifted almost all my money."
"A big bad gang leader was robbed by a tiny child?" She asked in an amused tone.
"Yes, They are quick, children where I'm from don't pickpocket." He said in a defensive tone, he furrowed his brow.
"It's what some need to do to survive." She confessed. "I would be lying if I said I didn't help a certain few on their skills."
"You a pickpocket?" He asked looking at her suspiciously. "How dangerous of you Lenora." He chuckled to himself.
"I am a women of many mysteries." She winked to him as they strolled to the market. "I crave the adventure."
"Fight clubs and pickpocketing. I'm curious to see what else it is you like." Jacob snorted as they turned the corner to the street her first stop was on. His comment made her heart jump a beat.
"In due time Mr. Frye." She peered up to him looking in his eyes from the Brim of her hat. She noticed Jacob fidgeting with a pocket watch. He was adjusting the dial when he noticed her observing his actions.
"Doesn't keep time." He stated as he slipped it back into his pocket.
"Will you be fighting again soon?" She asked to make conversation as they continued to stroll down the street through the other commuters.
"Soon enough. The money is good." He laughed, She didn't believe him that he did it for the money. He looked like he was enjoying himself in that ring last night.
"I should have bet more on you, now that you will be a hot commodity I won't win nearly as much as I did last night betting on you." She sighed thinking of the money she could have made if she bet more.
"How much did you bet?" He asked as if he came upon a realization on how much she could have won remembering his own payout.
"300 Pounds." As she made her statement Jacob seem to chock on his air. "So I made 900 pounds last night. That was nice." She said in a casual tone. Gambling wasn't foreign to her. Her father taught her all the card games, horse racing, fight club matches and how to place proper bets and when to take risks. Jacob was staring down at her with a stunned look on his face.
"Didn't realize you were that much of a gambler." He said as he seemed taken back. "Women of many mysteries is right."
"Don't tell me you're not a gambling man Jacob." She asked with a tone of curiosity.
"Oh I am. I am just surprised on you making such a big bet." He laughed as he shook his head.
"But now that you're the prized fighter I won't have those odds again." She sighed again. "But plus for you, bigger pay outs and all the women from Whitechapel to Westminster will be flocking all over you." She laughed as they approached the first shop. This first shop happened to be one of her favourite types. A Confectionary Store. She always had a massive sweet tooth. "Here." She said stopping in her tracks tugging Jacob'a arm. They entered the small shop as she gazed over the glass jars of candy. Jacob's eyes widened at the sights of the candy. The shop keeper seen her and started to fill a box with goodies when he finished he handed her the box and she passed him some money. "Ready." She said to Jacob holding her small box, placing it in her basket. He offered his arm again as she took it they headed out the shop back into the streets.
"Did not realize your party required sweets." He chuckled eyeing the box in her basket.
"Oh it doesn't. Since we were walking by I needed to get some brandy balls." She smiled to him.
"They are my favourite." We said in unison, She followed with a giggle. She picked up the small box and opened it slightly.
"Would you like one?" She offered to him as he took one and popped it into his mouth. "I'll let you know one of my secrets. The best ones are in The Strands at a shop at the train station."
"I'll note that." He smiled to her. They continued to stroll to all the shops she had planned and ordered the things she needed for the party. As they were leaving the market they strolled past a flower stall, Lenora stopped to admire the pretty flowers. The only time she enjoyed bright colours was in flowers.
"Aren't they beautiful?" She asked Jacob as she admired them.
"Very beautiful." Jacob said as he stared at Lenora. "Did you know flowers apparently have their own language?"
"Hm, I did not. I'd love to learn it." She beamed as she looked at Jacob. He moved his hand over to the yellow roses, picking up a single rose while tossing the man selling them a coin. He passed the flower to her and gave her a smile that almost looked sinister.
"Yellow roses: Friendship." He told her as she took the flower. A blush formed at her cheeks, and she immediately dropped her gaze to the flower attempting to hide her blush.
"Thank you Jacob." She said still staring at the flower. He took her arm into his again as she clutched the flower.
"So this party, its an annual thing?" He asked breaking the silence.
"Yes, my father would have wanted it to continue. Also it gives me a reason to introduce my brother to some single women." She laughed at her real intentions of the party.
"Oh, and for you to meet any single men?" He asked raising an eyebrow at her causing her to blush.
"No no, focusing on Harry. So he can get married to carry on the Stafford name." She attempted deterred the topic.
"There is no harm in looking for yourself either." He joked to break up some of the tension that was building.
"My brother never told you about why I left did he?" She asked in a curious tone with a hint of sadness in her voice.
"No, he did not." He answered her looking at her curiously watching her smile fade away.
"I have a question for you, and I know you will probably say no." She stated as she stopped in her tracks causing Jacob to stop and turn to her. "Will you take me to a cemetery just south of the Lambeth Asylum?"
"Lambeth is pretty far love." He searched for an answer in his head. He told her brother he wouldn't take her out of Whitechapel, but since when did Jacob listen to what anyone?
"I realize that. Please Jacob." She begged at him, Jacob could see the sadness that occupied her usually sparkling eyes.
"If I do, will you tell me why you left London?" He asked curiously purposing a deal. "And never speak that I took you there to anyone."
"Agreed." She replied nodding her head. Jacob then whistled for a Rooks carriage that was down the street. He decided it was a better idea to have a Rook drive while they sat in the closed carriage, just incase the carriage came along any Blighters or her brother. He helped Lenora into the carriage and he followed. They sat in the carriage in silence as she looked out the window; she wasn't use to being in a closed carriage with anyone except a family member or him. Jacob was still admiring her from across the carriage, he found himself quite taking back by how beautiful she was. After a long carriage ride the Rook announced their arrival. Jacob stepped out of the carriage, tapping into his eagle vision making sure the cemetery was clear of Blighters. He helped Lenora out of the carriage, he allowed her to lead the way into the cemetery. After a short walk in the middle of the cemetery she stopped at a large tombstone. As she observed it she felt her body tense up immediately. Feeling like all the air had escape her body and she forgot how to breathe.
"This is my first time actually seeing it." She chocked as she started to speak. Jacob observed the tombstone and seen the name. "Matthew Walsh" Jacob recognized that the name was not of her family name, he began to wonder who it was.
"Who is it?" Jacob asked cautiously as he continued to observe the stone. He noticed the dates next. "1846-1867" A year older than him he noted; and that the date of death was just a year ago.
"Matthew was the son of the leader of the Cavaliers another gang, we grew up together." She explained to him as tears started to stream down her face. "And I was madly in love with him." Jacobs heart ached for her when she spoke the last statement.
"What happened?" He asked without trying to seem like he was pushing, he felt her hand glide over his and hold on to it with a slight squeeze.
"Just over a year ago, I snuck out after my father told me not to leave Whitechapel's boundaries. He would always meet me at when Whitechapel ends and the City began. That night I persuaded him to take me into the Strands for a stroll needing a bit for scenery then the walls of Whitechapel. We've been courting for a few months at this point with an engagement in the works." Her tears slowly turned to a small sob between her words. "While he was walking me back to the boarder, with a few of his guards, we were attacked. He shoved me behind a pile of barrels before any of the Blighters seen me, they were extremely out numbered. I sat quietly crying behind those barrels but I had to look to make sure Matthew was okay. As I looked I seen a Blighter put a knife through his stomach. I was able muffle my screams with my hands until I heard the Blighters leave." Jacobs heart ached even more for her, he let go of her hand and wrapped his arm around her shoulder and pulled her close into his chest. It hurt him that all she knew was death; she was innocent in it all. She continued to speak as he held her to his chest. "Once they left I came out, he wasn't dead yet. I screamed and screamed for help but no one came on time. He died as he laid in my lap on the cobblestone streets of the Strands."
"I am so sorry love." Jacob attempted to soothe a now sobbing Lenora. He placed his index finger on her chin to bring her eyes to his. "I will kill every single Blighter in this city for you." With his thumb Jacob wiped her tears her cheek, watching a blush form on them as he inched closer to her face with his. He felt like he needed to make her happy; and as he inched closer, he took notice that she did not move away but move closer as well. They both closed their eyes with their lips now less than an inch apart awaiting for them to collide as Jacob heard the Rook call out to him.
"Boss." The Rook interrupted as they pulled away from each other. "Blighter were spotted in the area."
"We must go." He stressed to Lenora. She glanced at the tombstone one more time as she placed a hand on the top. "Goodbye." She whisper for only her to hear as she walked with Jacob back to the carriage. Jacob led her to the carriage helping her into it with the Rook speeding off immediately. The carriage ride back was again silent but this time for a different reason. Jacob couldn't help to have his mind on their almost kiss. He had no idea what brought the urge to kiss her over him; she was sad about a man she was in love with but his first idea was to kiss her? Was the best move? Probably not, but he didn't care. He felt very disappointed as he pondered the idea that they were interrupted. Her mind wandered on it too, she felt a strange feeling come over to her when Jacob pulled her close to him. She had only felt this feeling once before when she was with Matthew. She couldn't explain her attraction to the assassin she just met, but she knew the chemistry she felt between the two of them as they look into each other's eyes before their almost kiss was intense, but she couldn't help but have the thought if getting attached to another gang leader was a smart idea. They finally made their was back into Whitechapel and Jacob felt a sense of relief that he made it back with them unharmed, especially after her story she told him. The carriage dropped her off in front of the pub, Jacob helped her out of the carriage.
"Thank you Jacob, for today." She said as she stared to the ground.
"My pleasure little dove." He smiled at her as she looked up to him. "I look forward to seeing you again."
"I look forward to the day." She said to him as he took her hand and placed a small peck again on her knuckles not wanting to push it too far. As he let go of her hand she turned and headed into the pub, Jacob watching her as she walked her way to the booth her brother occupied, her still holding on to her yellow rose. Once he seen her sit down he took of running towards Henry's curio shop.
Jacob entered the curio shop with a grin from ear to ear. Evie observed her beaming brother, feeling a happy radiance coming from him that she normally never felt from him.
“How was your date brother?” Evie blurted out as her brother glared at her.
“It was not a date.” He insisted rolling his eyes.
“Sure, whatever you say.” Evie sighed at her brother.
“She’s a very interesting girl if you got to know her.” Jacob maintained. “She’s a wonderful friend and ally.”
“And how well did you get to know her Jacob?” Evie raised her eyebrow at Jacob. He turned on his heels to face her.
“Evie, we are friends.” He hissed towards her.
“Oh Jacob, you have been fawning over since the moment you seen her.” Evie pointed out to her brother. His face turned a bright red as he glared at his sister.
“We. Are. Just. Friends.” He maintained.
“Okay then.” Evie retreated in their argument, still believing he liked her. Evie passed him a note with a sketch of a person attached. “This is your target.” Jacob opened the paper and seen the name “Harold Drake” scratched below the portrait. The location he would be was also listed as the market that he had just happened to be with Lenora that day.
“I will see you later then.” Jacob said as he folded the paper and put it in his pocket. He got up from his position in a chair and headed out to the location of his target.
I have up until chapter 9 written with the rest till chapter 20 planned. I am going to do weekly updates for now, I am thinking Sunday's as I like to have a buffer instead of writing then posting a chapter that is half-assed.
Hope you enjoy this chapter for now :).
When Lenora awoke the next morning she was still dreaming from her day with Jacob, she felt like she was floating on air. She shared her dark memory of why she left and he didn't run away. He surprised her by getting closer to her. The spark she felt when he pulled her to his chest was a spark she did not even feel with Matthew. She did not even know how she truly felt about him nor she knew how he felt about her. Her mind wandered on the what ifs as she got ready, was it even smart for her to get close to another person that leads such a dangerous life. Soon she finished getting ready and set foot to the pub below to join her brother in his regular booth. Harry noticed the almost illuminating smile come from her face.
"What has you so happy?" Harry asked her when she sat down in the booth across from him, arching his eyebrow as he spoke.
"Nothing at all; It's a lovely day that is all." She defended as she lied to her brother. She attempted to deter his attention to something else, when she realized she didn’t even look at the weather today.
"Bloody hell Lenora, its piss down raining. I'm assuming your date went well with Frye then?" Harry pried for information as he caught her in the lie.
"It was not a date. He's a friend." She maintained as her glared at him. She did not want Harry to make anything bigger than it was at this moment. She didn’t even know how she truly felt from him. Or was she just denying her feelings for him in fear of losing him to a curse she swore she bared.
“Fine, whatever you say.” He rolled his eyes seeing that she was having an inner battle in her head, she may of been able to read him like a book but it was likewise. “Oh right, these came for you." Harry informed her as he waved over the barmaid. She held a small vase of flowers. She set them down while placing a small note with the vase. Lenora picked up the card and read the small note scribbled on.
"Freesia - Trust" the note read. She observed the yellow bell shaped bulbs with their long stems. She leant down to put her nose to the bulbs, the smelt of a sweet citrus scent. They were lovely and beautiful.
"Who left them?" She asked her brother. He shrugged his shoulders as he did not know, he followed with a small chuckle.
"Looks like you have a secret admirer." He teased her, earning a glare that made it seem like she was throwing daggers with her eyes. They went back to eating their breakfast before Harry departed for the day on business. Lenora spent the day busy party planning in the pub. She made a mess of her brothers booth, papers scattered on the table. She hoped Jacob would pop in for a pint but she was out of luck for the night as the evening grew later and the pub started to fill with rowdy Clinkers. Lenora cleaned up her papers filled with notes and headed up stairs for the night, she had the thought of asking her brother if it would be okay for her to join him to the fight club but she decided against it turning in for the night instead.
The next day she started her day off like any other, still having thought of Jacob she attempted to keep herself busy. She joined her brother for breakfast like every day, but it started out just like yesterday, as she sat with her brother the barmaid brought of another vase of flowers.
"Someone really likes you Len." Harry laughed as she open the card.
“Red Camellia - You're a flame in my heart.” the note red this time, she observed the beautiful blossom. The meaning made her heart skip a beat, who were they from and what did the messages mean.
"One minute." She said to her brother as she got up from the table and walk to the bar to speak to the barmaid. "Lottie?" She asked the barmaid.
"Yes Lenora." She answered to her as she rushed to face her.
"Who dropped the flowers off yesterday and today?" Lenora asked as she looked suspiciously at her.
"Um, same person as yesterday. Didn't catch a name, she had blonde hair, about my height." She explained.
"A girl?" Lenora pressed forming a confused look on her face.
"Yes, she was wearing a green jacket and yellow sash. She was one of them Rooks." She remember when the connection clicked in Lenora's brain. They were from Jacob, she remember he mentioned the language of flowers when they were together. But was he sending them because he meant the meanings or was he just teaching her?
"Thank you." She nodded to Lottie as she joined her brother back at the table.
"Figure out who your secret admirer is?" He asked with a suspicious tone with a small laugh.
"Nope." She lied attempting to conceal it better than she did yesterday.
They next day it continued, she arrived in the pub like always and Lottie had a new vase of flowers. Delivered by the same Rook, with just the meaning on the card.
“Coral Rose - Desire” Again they were beautiful, and the meaning became deeper. Why was Jacob sending these to her, she needed to know.
Again day four came with same routine she was getting accustomed to now. Opening the card this time with a small hope that there would be more of a message.
“Yellow Iris - Passion” Her heart swirled in thoughts of the passion she felt with Jacob as he pulled her into his chest, as they almost kissed. She wanted to see him again, but again he was not by the pub.
Finally Day five came with more hope. Opening the card today observing the wonder vase as she thought she was running out of room in her bedroom for the flowers.
“Striped Carnations - I wish I could be with you.” She read, but before she put the card down she noticed another small note in the bottom corner. “Soon I will see you again.” She hoped that meant she would see him again soon, her heart started to yearn to see his face. There was no denying anymore how she cared for him. Still Jacob was not by the pub again, but she still heard of his efforts around Whitechapel in passing words throughout the Clinkers and urchin children in the pass five days he had free children from a local factory, assassinated a Templar that terrorized Whitechapel, turn in a member of the Blighters to the police and took over a Blighter stronghold. It warmed her heart hearing of his victories. But now she was hearing the rumours that Kaylock had challenged the Rooks to a gang war.
"What of this gang war?" Lenora asked Harry as she sat for dinner.
"Kaylock has challenged the Rooks, for the territory of Whitechapel. We will help." Harry explained as he took a sip of his ale.
"Have you formed a plan with Jacob?" She asked as the barmaid brought them their food.
"Jacob isn't one for plans apparently, which is good because you cannot really plan this out." Harry continued. "I will need you to be ready with aid back here for anyone who gets hurt."
"I will get supplies tomorrow morning then." She assured him. Lenora had been studying before she left in the field of nursing, a friend of her fathers had taught her the basics. It was time to use her skills once again, she spent many nights patching up her brother or Matthew whether it was from a fight with the Blighters or a match at the fight club her stitching skills were impeccable.
Meanwhile, on the other side of Whitechapel in Henry’s shop, Evie had been noticing Jacob acting strange in the last few days. He threw himself into his work, every day getting rid of a target and today was the first day he had nothing to do except wait for the Gang War. He was fidgeting in his seat as Evie sat with her book across the room from him. Jacob with every move letting out a depressing sigh.
“What is the matter with you?” Evie asked sternly as she slammed her book shut.
“I am bored.” Jacob complained as he shifted in his seat again earning another sigh. A small knock came at the door and Jacob shot up from his seat and rushed to the door, Evie noticed a small blonde behind the door in a Rook uniform. Jacob spoke quietly enough that even Evie’s eavesdropping skills were not able to pick up what he was saying. He passed her a small paper with a few shillings and shut the door as she walked away.
“What was that about?” She asked observing her brother acting skittish coming back to his seat.
“Rook business.” He snapped as he slumped back in his chair.
“Right.” She rolled her eyes. She went to open her book back up when she remembered something she's been meaning to ask. “Jacob, can you tell me why my Language of Flowers book that Henry gave me keep ending up not where I left it?”
“I have no idea Evie.” Jacob said with a strong defensive tone. “Why on earth would I know? Ask Greenie.”
“It has nothing to do with the fact you may be sending someone flowers?” She laughed as Jacob’s eyes searched for an answer. Evie thought “bingo” in her head as she knew Jacob was the culprit.
“Evie, enough. I am going out.” He snapped at her as he flung up from his chair and left the shop slamming the door behind him. She decided she wouldn't press her brother on the situation anymore tonight but let him be. She couldn't help worry about him though as he told her the story a few days after his outing with Lenora on why she left. Her heart broke for Lenora as she couldn't imagine what it would be like to lose a lover the way she did. On the other hand she had to look out for her younger brother, if she didn’t and his feelings that he refuses to admit at this moment are not return. He could probably burn London to the ground in his heartbreak and destroying a whole city was not something she could just clean up behind him.
Another Sunday update; for the next while they will still only be on Sunday's. I have had a few bumps in the road with my health. I have epilepsy and had two seizures during this week so I haven't be able to look much at a computer screen. Hopefully I will get back to writing this week :)
Chapter 6: Interrupted Love
Jacob spent most of his night resisting going to the pub to see Lenora. It has been five days since he seen her. Since he almost kissed her. He knew what he desired in her, that was no question in his mind but would she feel the same. He was never good at showing his feelings, ever. He showed emotion in his work with how brutal he could and can be with a target, how if he's upset he has no problem going 8 rounds in a prize fighting ring. Hell he'd walk down the street screaming who he was in Blighter territory for some release of his emotions. But last night he couldn't bring himself to do that, so instead he climbed the small chapel that was adjacent to the pub sat on the roof top with a bottle of bourbon and drank while observing her to make sure she was safe. Yet he still felt weird like he was stalking her, because technically this is what stalking is. He could of just went in the pub and talked to her but what if she rejected him? Would it ruin the business relationship with Harry? Would he be able to resist ripping another mans throat out if they dare to touch her? He didn't know the answer to the first two questions but the last he surely knew he couldn't resist. It was something about her, the way she lit up the room even without the bright coloured clothing he has seen on these other girls. Whenever her gorgeous eyes laid upon him he wanted her even more than before. He had to shake his thoughts from his head as he approached the pub with his sister and Henry.
Today was the Gang war and they need the Clinkers help still, and Evie was insistent on forming a plan. Jacob had actually got up at a decent time for being out all night looming over the Clinkers pub, Which surprised Evie.
"Up already? I thought I would have to drag you out of bed for this meeting." Evie joked to her younger brother.
"Just merely excited for the Gang War." Jacob quipped back.
"Or excited to see your girlfriend?" Evie dug some more.
"She's not my girlfriend." Jacob snapped at her with a growl coming from him.
"Well good. Father always had said-" Jacob cut her off before she could finish.
"Never let personal feelings come between the mission. I know. But maybe you should be telling yourself that." Jacob reminded his sister who immediately went on the defence.
"I have no idea what you are talking about." Evie brushed off his comment.
"Oh? You sure about that and how you fawn over Henry?" Jacob form his devilish smirk as Evie searched for an answer.
"Oh shut up. He is our mentor and cares more about finding the Piece of Eden than you do." Evie defended herself as Henry entered the room.
"If you two are done bickering we should go." Henry noted as Jacob went to look at his pocket watch which was missing. He never mentioned it to Evie because it was their fathers and she would never let him live it down. He started to think back and he hasn't seen it since his outing with Lenora. The ride to the pub was quite among the occupants of the carriage. They arrived and entered the pub just as the barmaid was clearing the plates of Harry and Lenora's breakfast and setting some tea down. Harry seen the three entered and waved them over. As Jacob came to the table he noted the vase of flowers in the middle of the table he had the Rook deliver today. His expression changed from serious to a smile when he observed them and Lenora's infections smile. "Hibiscus - Delicate Beauty" he thought to himself remember what he wrote on the card. Jacob jumped ahead of his sister and slid himself into the booth positioning himself next to Lenora. He noticed she was dress quite simple today in a white blouse with a black vest over it. Similar to the outfit she was wearing when he seen her at the fight club. Lenora smiled to Jacob as he sat next to her their gaze lingering for a moment before she advert it to acknowledge Evie and Henry.
"Lovely flowers." Evie commented as she noticed them. "Hibiscus are one of my favourite. Aren't they lovely Henry?" Evie a corner of her mouth turned to a sly smile as she looked to Henry noticing her brothers glare.
"Yes they are, they are native to Malaysia. If I remember correctly from the book I gave you Evie, they mean 'Delicate Beauty'." Henry informed oblivious to the fact Evie was attempting to torment her brother.
"Yes, seems like Lenora has an admirer. This is the sixth vase this week. Her bedroom looks like a botanical garden." Harry explained with laughter, earning a glare from Lenora.
"I think they are all rather beautiful and I completely adorable." She mused as she tucked the card into a pocket. She glance at Jacob who's stone cold embarrassed face turned to a small smile when she said how she felt about them.
"Well I just hope who ever this bloke is realize what he's getting himself into." Harry declared as Lenora turned her face to Harry's ready to give him a snarky comment but Jacob interrupted her instead.
"Whoever this 'bloke' is lucky to have you care so much about his simple gifts." Jacob got Lenora's glare diverted back to him.
"Now, this Gang war we need a plan." Evie proposed to change the focus of their conversation before Jacob got too angry.
"You cannot go into a Gang war with a plan." Lenora laughed as Evie gave her a questionable look.
"Lenora!" Harry snapped as he looked at Lenora with wide eyes as she rolled hers earning a chuckle from Jacob. "That was rude." He scolded her and turned his attention back to the twins. "But she is right. You cannot go in with a plan and expect it to work along with your plan. It's a rumble anything can happen." He explained Evie nodded knowing Harry had more experience with Gangs then she did.
"Told you." Jacob taunted as Lenora elbowed him. He turned to her as she shook her head no. Knowing she just got scolded for her tongue she did not want Jacob to get a scolding from his own sister.
"But you can go in prepared. We have had no luck in the past fighting Kaylock. He some how always knows how to disappear out of thin air, if he has you in a vulnerable position he will toy with you instead of finishing you off so you can use that to your advantage." Harry explained his knowledge of Kaylock. Harry and Jacob then talked back and fourth on how many men they will need from each side and how territory will be split up, Harry still desired the small territory that we still had. Not wanting really anymore. After they talked Harry insisted everyone had a "good luck" shot of bourbon, of course Jacob agreed instantly. Lottie the barmaid set five shot glasses in front of them and poured them their shot.
"Didn't know you were a hard liquor girl Lenora?" Jacob raising his scarred eyebrow at Lenora.
"Again Jacob, many mysteries." She winked at him as they all cheers and took their shot. Lenora slammed the glass down after swallowing the liquor with ease. "Plus I need this to get me prepared to stitch all you back up." She laughed.
"Oh yes, forgot to add. Lenora has quite a bit of training in the medical field training under our fathers friend. She will be here to administer any medical aid to an extant." Harry informed them all.
"That's extremely helpful." Evie added taking note of that tidbit of information.
"So much to learn about you." Jacob was staring at her with such a gaze her face turned bright red. Harry noticed this interaction but ignored it.
”I'm going to rally my men, I will meet you their at 2." Harry informed as he got up from the booth.
“See you then.” Jacob nodded as he then returned his gaze to Lenora. He didn’t notice Evie and Henry get up from the table.
“Jacob?” Evie looked at her brother.
“What?” Jacob asked her as she looked at him with a questionable look.
“Coming?” She rolled her eyes.
“I will catch up later.” He turned his attention to a still blushing Lenora. Evie and Henry headed out of the pub as Evie gave Jacob a look of concern for what he was doing. “So Hello.”
“Hello.” Lenora giggled attempting to hid her blushing face.
“I’m sorry I haven't been able to stop by.” Jacob apologized to Lenora as he reached for her hand that was resting on the table.
“You are a busy man, its understandable.” She replied with a smile. “I heard of all your travels though. That was kind of you to rescue those children.”
“Just doing my part.” He stared into her eyes deeply.
“Oh I forgot, I have something for you.” She announced as she got up from the booth and rush to a back room of the pub, Jacob remained at the table. Lenora came back holding a little black box with a purple ribbon around it.
“Whats this?” Jacob asked looking at the box she placed in front of him.
“Just open it.” She pushed him to open the box. He removed the ribbon and opened the top of the box. He removed a piece of paper that was blocking the contents in the box, his eyes widened as he realized what it was.
“I thought I lost this.” Jacob blurted as he took out his fathers pocket watch of the box. “How did you get this?”
“Pickpocket it off you.” She laughed as he shook his head. “I got it fixed for you, it keeps time now.”
“Thank you dove.” His eyes lit up knowing she did this for him. “This was my fathers.”
“You should get going to the fight.” She stressed as he looked at the time.
“See you after?” He asked raising his eyebrow.
“I’ll be here.” She gave him a wink, Jacob leaned quickly in and gave Lenora a peck on the cheek which surprised her. He gave her a quick wink before he got up from the table and headed out of the pub to meet his sister and allies to complete this Gang War.
Jacob arrived to the Whitechapel station where the fight was about to go down, he was informed that Kaylock had bet his train on the fight but he was no wheres to be seen. After accepting the terms Jacob step out of the carriage, his Rook quickly formed behind him when Harry showed up with his Clinkers. They were conversing when they heard some cheering behind them when a herd of Blighters came crawling from a train. Jacob turned and leaded into the fight. A Blighter was first to charge at Jacob which he used his own momentum against him ramming his hidden blade into the Blighters stomach. Thats when all hell broke loose, Blighters clashing with the men dressed in green and black. Blood being spilled on both sides but majority of the Blighters being slaughtered. Jacob dashed around slicing and stabbing his opponents when finally Kaylock showed himself. He was standing on top of his train, Jacob took of running after it as it took off down the track. He caught up with the back of the train as he took a hold of the last train cart, climbing abroad to the top of the train. Jacob fought all the Blighters that came towards him, slaying them as they came to him. Finally he came face to face with Kaylock. Jacob drew his kukri as Kaylock attempted to swipe his knife at him. Jacob countered with a slash, they started to battle along the train returning blow for blow when Jacob had him on the edge of the train. Jacob launched his kukri into Kaylock’s stomach with all his force withdrawing it from his stomach blood covered, he picked up his leg and kicked Kaylock off the top of the train cart with such force Kaylock’s landing killed him instantly.
Meanwhile, Lenora was back at the pub attending to the first wave of injured Clinkers and Rooks that came through the door. Soon the pub filled up with cheers of a victory. As she cleaned herself up after patching up the last man she went out to the pub, noticing her brother drinking with his Clinkers, not seeing Jacob anywheres. She came to where he brother was standing when he turned to her.
“The twins will be here soon. Jacob killed Kaylock!” He cheered to his sister, she formed a wide grin on her face.
“Are you hurt at all?” She asked him giving him a once over.
“I am fine.” He assured her as a loud cheer came from the entrance of the pub. Jacob walked in with his sister and more Rooks. Jacob walked straight to Lenora and reached for a hug. Their embrace was short as they pulled away from each other Lenora peered up at him.
“Congratulations!” She cheered as Jacob looked down to her with the biggest grin she has ever seen on him. The barmaid brought over a pint of ale for him as he took it and took a swig. As he pulled up his arm Lenora noticed the large cut that began to bleed on his chin. “Jacob are you hurt?” He grabbed to his face to get a better look at his injury.
“Its fine.” He attempted to assure her.
“No this needs to be cleaned up.” She stressed as she lead him to the back room where she kept all her medical supplies. He instructed Jacob to sit on the chair as she went over and got a clean cloth and some alcohol, she return to the front of him as she lifted his head up so she could get a better look at the cut. She poured a bit of alcohol to the cloth and applied it to the cut. Jacob winced as the alcohol assaulted his open wound. He stared at her as she concentrated on cleaning the wound. “Looks like you won’t need stitches, might have a tiny scar.”
“I will add it to the collection.” He laughed. She sat the cloth down on the table next to them. Lenora headed over the to the wash pail again and cleaned her hands. She heard Jacob rise behind her and within seconds he was behind her, she felt his hands caress her hips and flipped her around towards him, her hands now resting on his chest. Their gaze intense as ever. They were alone, completely alone. Jacob lifted his hand to her face as his traced his index finger down her cheek to her jawline. Lenora shuttered under his tender touch, the man that stood before her was a dangerous killing machine but with her he seemed to be the most gentle person she had known. Thoughts in her head rushed that she couldn't even form a word, she barely knew Jacob but the fire she felt with Jacob could burn down all of London. “Did you enjoy your flowers?” He whispered to her.
“Very much so.” She breathed as Jacob kept inching closer to her.
“Freesia because I trust you.” He purred as he brought his mouth to her ear. “Red Camellia because the flame I feel for you is burning out of control.” His index finger trailed down her arm as he ended as her hand, entangling their fingers together. “Coral Roses because I desire to be with you. Yellow Iris because I feel passion for you. Striped Carnations because I missed you. And last but not least the Hibiscus because you are a delicate beauty flower.” Jacob finished as Lenora could feel the butterflies building up in her stomach, Jacob lifted his head from her ear as he stared into her eyes. He inched closer to her lip with his lips as they were just hovering over each other, waiting to engulf each other when the door to the back room swung open causing Jacob and Lenora both to jump causing them to rip apart from each other.
“Oh I am sorry am I interrupting something?” Harry laughed noticing both Lenora’s and Jacob red faces.
“No.” Lenora rushed out of the room, slipping into the door behind the bar and ran to her room. She was embarrassed her brother caught her like that but so scared because Jacob just confessed feelings and she said nothing. At all. Jacob attempted to follow Lenora before she went up to her house, Harry gave Jacob a pat on the shoulder.
“My sister eh?” He laughed raising his eyebrow as he walked out of the back room. Jacob felt a growing frustration in his stomach as he clenched his fist. This was the second time he attempted to kiss her and they were interrupted. He stormed out of the back room and out of the pub grabbing a bottle of bourbon as he slipped out, ignoring his sisters calls for him as he exited. He climbed a top of the chapel across from the pub. He noticed Lenora’s bedroom go from a dim light to nothing. He figured she went to bed as he began to drink. He had no idea how she felt towards him, he confessed his feelings, confirmed to her that he was the one sending her flowers and after they were interrupted she ran. Did she not feel the same?
It was the night of the party the Clinkers were hosting and Lenora spent the whole morning working and putting Clinkers to work on finishing decorating the hall. The beams from the ceiling had black and purple drapes that cascaded down to meet the floor, the white candles that littered the chandlers were replaced with fresh black and purple candles. The normal fighting ring was replaced with a dance floor and table were lined with food and drinks. It was only a few more hours before people would start arriving and Lenora needed to run home and get ready.
“Lenora, Are you ready yet?” Harry knocked on her door a few hours later after she got home. It was now 7 o’clock. Clinkers should be arriving now and as hosts they did not want to arrive too late.
“Yes.” Lenora replied as she swung open the door. Harry was stunned when he seen his sister standing there. She was wearing a beautiful black silk ball gown over her layers of petticoats, the bodice formed around her small waist perfectly showing off her curves and the neckline that had black lace detailing just came above her breasts. Her hair was only pulled out of her face as her long curls fell down her back.
“You look like mother!” Harry spoke as he looked at his sister that looked like a mirror image of their mother. “Now let’s go, we're going to be late.” Harry rushed his sister down to the awaiting carriage that she noticed was more heavily guarded then normal; about 10 Rooks in total. The carriage ride was short and sweet. The guards ushered the two Staffords into the club. As Harry and Lenora reached the top of the staircase all the Clinkers stopped dancing and conversing with each other to give their Gang Leader a cheer while entering. Lenora’s eyes darted around the room to see who was there when her eyes met upon Jacob who was staring back at her standing with his sister and Henry. She was taken back by how handsome he looked tonight; his clothes changed; rather than a tattered old outfit he was wearing a green waist coat over his white shirt, keeping both untucked with a red tie hanging loosely around his neck. Over that he was wearing a new leather coat that looked quite extravagant with its quilted detailing along the collar. His flat cap was replaced with a black top hat finished with a red sash. Lenora gave him a small smile as she walked down the stairs. Harry led his sister to the bar area when he got on top of the bar and whistled for everyone’s attention.
“Good Evening Clinkers and more importantly our new allies the Rooks who some are joining us tonight. You have to thank my lovely sister for putting on this event, not breaking my father’s tradition. We may have had our fair share of tragedies that have stuck us in the past while but we are still strong and we are still here. So drink up and party the night away!” Harry announced to everyone in attendance which was met with a loud cheer. Lenora stood next to the banister that looks out to the crowded dance floor.
“Excuse me miss.” Lenora turned around to see the voice that spoke to her when she seen none other than George the Clinker that met with her when she arrived.
“Hello George.” She replied to him.
“Would you agree to have a dance with me?” He asked offering his hand, she nodded and accepted as he led her to the dance floor. Jacob across the room, who’s eyes haven’t left Lenora since she had entered, noticed this interaction. Jacob felt a wave of jealously move through his body, he clenched his fist while gritting his teeth as he watched them enter the dance floor. Why did this Clinker have the balls to ask her to dance but he couldn’t even move from his spot to go talk to her. He was still nervous on how they left each other the last time.
“Jacob?” Evie asked as she could see the frustration taking over in his mind.
“What?” He snapped back at her with a growl.
“Jealous are we?” She laughed as she watched her brother’s eyes not daring to let Lenora out of his sight.
“Shut up.” He glared at his sister as he started to walk away. He brought himself to where Harry was sitting with a few Clinkers, he waved Jacob over as the Clinkers dispersed.
“Enjoying yourself?” Harry asked him as Jacob sat down at the table. Harry poured Jacob a drink from his bottle of bourbon he had dropped off at the table. "You look like you could use this."
“Yes, very nice party you have put together.” Jacob complimented, he picked up his drink and swung it back in one motion, swallowing it all.
“Ah, I had nothing to do with it. This was all my sister.” Harry laughed as he pointed to his sister who was being whirled around by a Clinker.
“Who is she dancing with?” Jacob asked with a jealous tone in his voice that Harry picked up.
“That would be George; he’s been a Clinker for a few years now. I think he has always had a thing for my sister.” Harry informed as Jacob looked at Harry. Harry could tell that notion bother Jacob. “But do not fret; she doesn’t have a thing for him. She barely remembers his name from time to time. Leaders are more her type.” He gave Jacob a wink. Jacob’s searched for words on how to defend himself, knowing Harry now can clearly tell Jacob had feelings for his sister. “Now, I am going to give you some words of advice. She is a good girl, too good. She will be very loyal to you but if you do her wrong she has no problem with shutting a person out. She loves with all her heart and the poor thing thinks she’s cursed so if you are met with some caution on her part, it’s only because every person she seems to love is now dead. Be patient with her she will come around.”
“Thank you.” Jacob listened to Harry advise but he could no longer watch her dance with this Clinker, he wanted to be dancing with her. He got up from his seat and pushed his way through the crowd of people to where Lenora was dancing with the Clinker. Jacob tapped him on the shoulder as he turned around, George instantly recognizing him as the Leader of the Rooks. “May I cut in?”
“If the lady is okay with it.” George looks to Lenora. She nodded her head in acceptance as Jacob took her hand. He shoved himself in between George and Lenora as he stared down at her growing smile.
“Hello Love.” Jacob gushed as he started to dance with Lenora. Jacob twirled Lenora around in circles making her ball gown flow with her movement as they laughed and giggled with each other. Jacob wasn’t the best dancer but he made the best of it. After twirling her around he held her closer to him, they swayed back and fourth as they stared into each others eyes. This was the exact moment Jacob needed, where he wanted to be in this exact moment. Lenora buried her head into Jacob’s neck as they continued to dance, both nearly out of breathe from the dancing. She breathed in his scent of leather and peppermint with a small hint of the bourbon he had been drinking, she did not want to let go of this moment. The only thing to break them out of their bubble was the sound of gunshots that was heard from above them. Lenora rose her head from Jacob shoulder in time for him to protective throw her behind him as he spotted where the shots have come from. There was a crowd of Blighters standing at the top of the stairs that started to open fire on those standing near as the whole party turn into chaos, women running for cover as then men started to draw their weapons. A Blighter pushed his way through the crowd straight to Jacob as he drew his kukri that was strapped to his hip. He focused on slaughtering the man before him, as he finished him off he turned around to find Lenora was no longer behind him. He searched the dance floor in a panic killing any Blighter in sight. He spotted his sister who was also fighting.
“Where is Lenora?” He panted as his back met his sisters.
“I don’t know!” She replied as she started fighting another hoard of Blighters that flooded the floor. Jacob continued his search, his panic growing more and more. He spotted Harry who just opened fire on 3 Blighter killing all three of them with a head shot each.
“Where is your sister?” Jacob pleaded, as Harry searched the floor of chaos, Black and Red colliding together as Rooks started to flood in the door to help take on the Blighters.
“Check the dressing rooms!” Harry screamed as he pointed to the doors on the other side of the room that a Blighter was entering. Jacob dashed across the room, taking out a few more Blighters in the process as he busted through the door which was met with a blood curdling scream. A Blighter had Lenora pinned to the table as he was attempting to lift her skirt above her head. Lenora began to kick and scream, Jacob lunged forward and ripped the Blighter away from her by his collar which caused the Blighter to rip the top of her dress nearly exposing her breasts. He fell to the ground as Jacob landed on top of him, clutching his throat with his gloved hand, squeezing tighter and tighter with an almost inhuman growl admitting from his throat. He flicked his wrist while still clutching his throat causing his hidden blade to discharge in the man throat, killing him instantly. He stood up looking over his kill, cleaning his blade of the blood. He turned to Lenora as she was now on the floor covering her head, rocking back and fourth covering whispering to herself.
“Love, it’s okay. I got you.” Jacob attempted to console her, he bent down to where she was when Lenora reached out and buried herself in Jacob’s chest. He held her there for a few moments, rubbing his hand along her back as she wept in his arms. Jacob could hear everything calm down outside when he encouraged Lenora to stand up, noticing her ripped top he took off his coat and placed it on her so that she was not exposed in anyway. He lead her out of the room as Jacob observed the damage that had been done. The floor was littered with blood and bodies. Only Clinkers and Rook remaining standing, but they lost a few. Jacob kept his arm tightly around Lenora as her brother rushed over.
“Are you okay Len?” Harry stressed looking over his sister.
“I am fine.” She assured her brother as she looked over the scene. “I just want to go home.” Harry looked to Jacob.
“I will take her.” Jacob pledged, he guided Lenora out of the fight club to the outside, on the way out Lenora noticed the door keeper Bart laying dead on the floor.
“He worked for my father for since I can remember.” She said pointing to his dead body.
“I am sorry love.” Jacob apologized, how did they get passed all his Rooks he had set up.
“I am cursed.” She muttered looking down to the cobblestone, Jacob still had his arm tightly wrapped around her.
“You are not cursed.” Jacob argued back furrowing his brow as he looked at her tear stained face.
“Every where I go death follows.” She snapped back at him, Jacob halted her in her tracks turning her to face him as she glanced up at his face.
“Death does not follow you, Understand? We attacked and killed Kaylock just yesterday this was retaliation. Nothing that to do with you.” Jacob vouched as he looked at her. He did not want her to feel like any of this was her fault.
“Okay.” She muttered as they finished their walk. Jacob lead her up the back stairs to her flat. He entered her house for the first time, she rushed to her bedroom and her housemaid help her get into her nightwear. Jacob knocked on the door after her housemaid left her room, Lenora was getting into her bed. Jacob looked around the bedroom the captive of his heart slept in; her bed looked fluffy with the plush purple linens. He sat down on the edge of the bed as Lenora pulled her blanket up over her.
“Sleep love.” He said as he took her traced his finger down her face. “I will check on you tomorrow.” He kissed her a top of her forehead as she laid down; not wanting their first kiss to be after such a tragedy. He shut the door and headed back to the fight club to help clean up the mess. Whoever set up this attack was going to pay.
I have slacked in my writing for the last few week. My personal life has been a mess. I had to put my service dog down a week and half ago. I am hoping to get back in to my writing this week to help me escape so that I might be able to update more frequently than on a weekly bases.
A grey cloud hung over London like the weather knew what happened the night before, the Clinkers lost a lot of great men in a time they were celebrating. Lenora woke up and hid in her flat for the day, only to be disturbed by her brother.
“Sister, these came for you.” Harry spoke to Lenora who was sitting in the drawing room reading a book. She took the package and vase of flowers. She placed the flowers on the table in front of her. She opened the box which contained a smaller box for her favourite chocolates. She seen a note that was next to the box.
“Apple Blossoms - Good Fortune & White Heathers - Protection” the note read. She opened the box of candies and began eating one when a small knock was heard on the back door. Mary the housekeeper answered it as Lenora peered in from the drawing room to see Evie standing at the door. She smiled at Lenora as Mary let her in the flat.
“Good Afternoon Lenora.” Evie greeted to the girl sitting on the sofa.
“Hello Evie.” She replied as she motioned for Evie to sit down.
“My brother just wanted me to check in on you today as he has some business to attend to.” Evie mentioned as she was offered a cup of tea by Mary.
“Oh that’s very kind but unnecessary really.” Lenora said as a small blush formed on her cheeks, Did Jacob really care about her enough to send his sister to make sure she was doing find she thought.
“Last night was a rough night.” Evie reminded. “My brother really likes you.” Evie giggled as she took a sip of her tea.
“Really?” Lenora said in a shocked excited tone.
“You must already know?” Evie asked amused to Lenora’s excitement in her voice.
“I suppose I thought of some sort of interest.” Lenora admitted looking down at the new flowers that were dropped off for her from Jacob.
“I am assuming the feelings are reciprocated?” Evie asked raising a brow.
“Very much so.” Lenora admitted finally, this was the first time admitting that she cared for Jacob. Even to herself she had never really admitted her feelings towards him.
“Good because I think you could be good for my brother. Settle down his reckless ways. Last night he was so jealous when he seen you dancing with that other man. I thought he’d rip his throat out.” Evie laughed as she grabbed one of the small sandwiches Mary had just put out on the table.
“Who George? George is harmless, I never had much interest in him.” Lenora laughed as she picked one up as well. For the next few hours Lenora and Evie spent time chatting with each other and getting to know each other. Evie told Lenora of their childhood in Crawley, Lenora telling her about hers in Whitechapel. The two women who were constantly surrounded by men for most of their life finally found a friend they could just talk about things they couldn't share with their brothers.
“I must say Evie, I am slightly jealous of your life.” Lenora laughed as she looked to Evie.
“How so?” Evie asked curiously.
“Your life serves purpose; especially as a women. I am expected to marry and have children that is basically my purpose. You lead the life of adventure.” Lenora confessed to her new founded friend.
“You have great medical skills, focus on those. God knows we will need it with the amount of time Jacob injures himself.” Evie joked earning a laugh from Lenora. “But in all seriousness Lenora, your life has purpose.”
“I hope so Evie.” Lenora smiled softly. “Lucky me, I am being forced to a ball tomorrow night by my aunt in hopes for me to find a husband.”
“Jacob won’t like that.” Evie laughed as she looked at her new friend.
“If only he would ask to escort me.” Lenora pondered on the idea for a moment.
Jacob ran from the scene of his crime after breaking through a small window in the top of the factory doing a leap of faith into a the bin of hay beneath him. As he ran the factory began to explode as he sabotaged all the mechanisms. At the end of the road he met with a man that introduced himself as Charles Darwin. A new ally in the fight against the Soothing Syrup. He was more than willing to share information with the new Gang Leader. Jacob found himself heading back to the train to share his findings with his sister when his mind wandered on the thought of Lenora as he waited for the train at the Southwark station. He hoped she was doing okay after what they endured last night. He was lucky he arrived to her when he did; he didn't even want to think what could have happened if he did not make it on time. He had never felt like this for another before, sure he had his fair share of women but no one he cared for as much as he did for her. The train finally arrived and slowed as Jacob jumped abroad, heading straight for his sisters carriage but he did not find her there. He headed to his own carriage, It was still only the middle of the day so he decided to have a quick nap as he barely slept the night before. He slumped down in the sofa he made a bed out of and drifted off into a sleep.
Jacob awoke from his short nap quickly when an idea came to his mind while he was attempting to sleep. He shot up from his position and fixed his ruffled hair placing his top hat back upon his head. Straightening out his green waist coat then pulling his long leather jacket on. He released the train was approaching Whitechapel, he climbed to the top train waiting for the perfect moment to shoot his grappling hook at one the of passing buildings. Taking his chance the grappling hook shot from his arm and attached itself to the top of the building Jacob shot up to the rooftop as the hook pulled him in. He ran along the rooftops until he was in front of his destination. He entered the pub looking around for a particular person, he found Harry in the back booth Jacob hope he would be in. Jacob approached the table as the guards parted so Jacob could talk to Harry.
“Good day Jacob, I was not expecting you today.” Harry looked at Jacob motioning for him to take a seat.
“I have a question.” Jacob stated as he took the bench across from the man he seemed permission from.
“Go on.” Harry amused the idea.
“I would like to take your sister on a date, a proper date. And I would like to ask your permission first.” Jacob admitted to the gang leader that sat across from him. A small smirk form along Harry’s thin lips.
“I do not oppose the idea. As long as her safety is a priority.” Harry said as he gave Jacob a stern look.
“Absolutely.” Jacob agreed as he reached out his hand. The leaders shook each others hand.
“Actually, she is suppose to be attending some fancy ball my aunt had arranged, I am obligated to make her attend. Maybe you should be the one to take her then. I think this is the type of ball you might want to attend with her.” Harry suggested the idea. Jacob instantly knew that if her aunt had set it up it was a ball for Lenora to meet a man.
“Yes, I would escort her. Is she home?” Harry nodded his head and motioned to the door that lead to the house up stairs. Jacob got up and proceed through the door then up the stairs. He knocked gently on the door as he swallowed his nerves. The door swung open as Lenora stood there looking at him.
“Hello Jacob.” She smiled to him as he stared at her, she ushered him into the small hallway at the entrance.
“Hello Love, are you busy?” Jacob asked as he noticed the tea cups on the table just passed where they were standing in the drawing room.
“I am just having tea with your sister.” Lenora informed him as Evie came to the doorway of the drawing room.
“Hello brother.” Evie smirked at her brother, knowing exactly what he was up to on why he was here.
“Oh, Evie. I did not realize you were here.” Jacob shuffled awkwardly in his spot. “I will leave you two be.” He went to turn to leave when he felt something grab his hand. He stopped in his movement as he looked down to his hand, seeing a small porcelain hand holding his.
“Don’t leave.” Lenora pleaded softly.
“I really must be going anyways, Jacob stay.” Evie instructed knowing her brother was afraid of this moment and already looking to run. Evie said her good-byes as she left out the door.
“How are you?” Jacob asked Lenora to speak the growing silence between them.
“I am fine.” She smiled. “Especially now.” She realized how forward she was in the moment, her eyes grew in fear Jacob would notice. His signature smirk grew on his face as he heard her words.
“I came here to ask you something.” Jacob admitted as he looked down to the floor, shuffling in his spot again.
“Oh?” Lenora looked to Jacob’s gorgeous hazel eyes.
“Harry told me you were to attend a ball tomorrow night?” He asked as he still awkwardly shuffled.
“Yes, we kept the party incident quiet from my aunt so I am still obligated to go.” Lenora explained to Jacob, she deep down did not want to go to this ball at all but she knew her aunt would probably force her back to Brighton if she missed it.
“You brother suggested for me to escort you, would that be okay with you?” Jacob asked her as he finally stood still looking into her sparkling blue eyes. Her smile grew on her face as she shook her head.
“Yes, that would be lovely.” She agreed. “But you will need a suit and no visible weapons.”
“That will not be a problem love.” Jacob laughed.
“So then pick me up at 9 tomorrow night?” Lenora spoke with a tone of excitement in her voice knowing he would be escorting her.
“It’s a date love.” Jacob leaned over and place a small peck on her cheek as he turn and left her house with the biggest grin on his face. He had many things to do, getting a suit was one of them. He could not wait to escort Lenora to a ball, just them two.
Thank you for anyone who has left a kudos or a comment so far.
Lenora gazed at the clock while Mary was still pinning her long hair up into an elegant up-do, she preferred to wear her hair down but it was frowned upon at these such events. The clock read 8:45 and Jacob should be arriving soon. As Mary placed the last pin the nerves started to set in for Lenora. She stared at her reflection in the mirror as Mary started to clean up behind her. Her corset began to feel tighter around her small waist when her breathing started to get shorter. She felt panicked as she continued to stare at herself. Jacob seemed more simpler than this type of life minus the assassin life he lead. He did not seem like he was into all the fancy high society events. In truth Lenora was not either, she kept up with the balls just so her aunt would not send her back to Brighton.
“Child, do not fret you look beautiful.” The older women spoke behind her sensing the unease behaviour coming from the young women.
“Do you not think it’s too much?” She looked down to her dark teal gown. The fabric glowed in the light of the gas lamps that illuminated the room. The shine of the teal fabric made the black lace detailing stand up even more. The neckline hung just above her breasts, which made her question if it was appropriate for the ball given the larger size of her breasts on her small frame. “Do you think this dress is inappropriate?”
“Not at all. I am sure you’ll catch the attention of Mr. Frye.” Mary said as Lenora expression changed. She was shocked that Mary noticed her attraction to Jacob. “That is who has caught your eye now isn't dear?”
“Nothing goes unnoticed by you.” Lenora nervously giggled as she fidgeted with her dress. Mary was employed by the family for years. She was only a few years older than her parents, Mary was like family to Lenora. “Do you really think he will like it?” She peered threw the mirror to the women that was now standing behind her, flatting a crease in the shoulder of the dress.
“Of course, you are beautiful. Just like your mother. The man would be a fool to look past you.” She winked as she ushered Lenora up. “Now go downstairs. He’s been waiting here for nearly 20 minutes.”
“What?” Lenora glanced to the clock again, 8:55. Her heart fluttered knowing that he was downstairs awaiting her.
Meanwhile, Jacob had nervously been waiting for Lenora to come down to the pub to meet him. Jacob felt out of place in the pub filled with people adorning their gang attire, while he was dressed in a perfectly fitted suit. His red tie hung loosely around his neck, his cane that concealed a sword match his jacket in unison and without his signature hat. Evie convinced him to leave his hat at the train. He had been situated at the bar for so long now he train of thought wandered off with him that he was nearly startled when he heard a small voice behind him.
“Hello.” The female voice spoke behind him. Jacob turned around quickly to see the women behind him. His face immediately lit up when he seen the owner, his gazed quickly followed downwards admiring all of her beauty.
“Hello Love.” Jacob smiled to the young women he had become infatuated with. “Shall we proceed to the ball?” Jacob stood and extended his arm for Lenora to hold on to.
“Lead the way Mr. Frye.” Lenora smirked to Jacob. He ushered her outside the pub to a green Rook carriage, on the driver seat two men sat there in their Rooks uniform. One man jumped down and opened the door as they approached. Jacob helped Lenora into the carriage then followed. The Rook shut the carriage door and within minutes the carriage was moving. Jacob noticed a few onlookers watching them as they pulled away.
“How scandalous, us in a carriage alone together. Your neighbours will be truly gossiping for weeks about it.” Jacob sassed out rolling his eyes at the looks of disapproval from the onlookers.
“They already think of me as a whore so this won’t weigh their opinion anymore.” Lenora giggled as Jacob looked to her.
“The people of Whitechapel love you.” Jacob attempted to validate.
“Not all of them but thats okay with me.” She winked to him.
“Well they are just jealous.” He stated.
“Of what?” She questioned as she rolled her eyes at him.
“Of your beauty.” A smile formed across his face as he noticed Lenora’s cheeks turn to pink. The rest of the carriage ride was short and sweet, arriving at a large mansion within the Strands that was clearly decorated for a party. Evie discovered that the party was being held by a local Templar target, but first there was documents inside the mansion that would be beneficial in the hands of the Assassins. Jacob was reluctant on turning his date into a mission but Evie insisted. He was sure it would only take him away from her for a few minutes. “What exactly is this ball for?” He asked as they walked up to the entrance.
“For women to find husbands.” She giggled. Jacob looked over to her as she stared back up to him.
“Well, I don’t like competition.” Jacob said as he puffed out his chest unintentionally.
“Who said their was any competition.” Lenora slyly said as they entered the ball. Jacob lead her to the dance floor as they watched the people dance Jacob grabbed two flute of champagne off a passing tray. He passed one to Lenora which she gladly accepted, lining the glass with her lips she eagerly took a gulp of the drink, swallowing all the contents of the glass in the one gulp. “Besides these things can be fun for people like us.” Jacob looked to her and raise one brow at her remark.
“What do you mean?” He questioned.
“All these fancy rich blokes and dumb girls, it’s easy to rob them blind.” She said as she stared straight into the crowd like she was picking out her target. A server walked by as she scoped up another glass of wine. She pointed to an blonde girl that was wearing a pale blue dress. Her dress was overly fancy, dripping in beads that looked like pearls, her neck was lined with a diamond and sapphire necklace and her gloved hands were accompanied with multiple diamond and gold bracelets. “That girl would be so easy, I could pick off a few of those and she wouldn't even notice.”
“Lenora, you cannot simply just rob people while they are here.” Jacob almost scolded her for her thoughts. Jacob knew what it was like to get pick pocketed and he was pissed when it happened. But then again, he had the urchins steal for him. Lenora was looking at him with a pout on her face as he shot down the idea. He rolled his eyes at her pouting lip debating his course of action. “Fine. What do I need to do?”
She nearly screamed when he agreed to help her out in acquiring some new jewelry. “Keep her occupied with your charm.” She winked at him as she took his arm and pulled him forward. She was like a lioness on a hunt and Jacob found it oddly arousing. He knew if Evie found out he was condoning this with her she would be furious. The urchins were one thing but he was to protect her. This could possibly get them in trouble. But in typical Jacob fashion he really didn’t care. They were finally next to the girl, Lenora situated herself next to the arm that hand the most bracelets on it.
“Hello there.” Jacob greeted the girl.
“Hi.” She stared at Jacob, he took her hand the one that Lenora was not standing next to in his hand. Bringing it to his lips he kissed it softly still staring into her eyes. A blush formed across her face.
“Jacob, I am ready to go dance now.” Lenora spoke looking at their interaction as Jacob let go of the girls hand.
“Excuse me, I must get back to my date.” He said as he took Lenora’s arm and lead her to the dance floor. Lenora started to giggle as the began to dance. Jacob noticing the new jewelry on her arm as he spun her around. Jacob and her danced for what seemed like hours as the night continued to get later. Lenora could see all the young women glaring in her direction as they danced. Jacob was easily the best looking man in the party.
“We should go soon.” Lenora giggled as he twirled her around the dance floor.
“I have to get something first.” Jacob whispered into her ear as he pulled her close to his chest. “Wait in the main entrance for me.” Lenora nodded as she released herself from Jacob grasp. She waited on a small sofa as some party goers exited the party. There was a man across the hall that was staring at her as she sat and waited for Jacob. Something about him gave off a dark energy and she could feel it. Maybe it was his dark hair or the dark eyes that she felt burning into her skin. She felt unease attempting to avoid any eye contact with the looming stranger. Out of the corner of her eye she could see him leaning against the wall, drumming his fingers on his crystal glass he held in his hands, staring at her.
“Hurry up Jacob.” She muttered under her breath as someone spoke behind her.
“What’s that love?” Jacob asked as she nearly jumped out of his skin. “Sorry love, did I scare you?”
“Yes!” Lenora stated as she got up from her spot and clutched on to his arm with a grip he never felt before from her.
“Something wrong?” He looked to her raising an eyebrow at her with a concerned expression on his face.
“No, just really want to leave.” She said as she turned around to see the stranger still staring at her. As Jacob led her to the door the strange raised his glass to her as if he was about to clink glasses with someone else with a sinister smile across his face. Lenora looked to Jacob quickly noticing he didn't see the motion from him, she looked back to see him stand up straight from his previous position; eyes still locked on her, as it seemed he let out a small laugh he turned away and walked towards the party.
Jacob led her to the awaiting carriage at the front of the mansion, he helped her into the carriage and followed. He sat next to her as she snuggled into his side as a Rook shut the carriage door. Jacob put his left arm over her shoulder to push her further into him.
“I had fun with you tonight.” She spoke softly looking into his hazel orbs which seemed to twinkle as a smile came upon his face.
“I had fun as well.” He laughed as he placed a small peck on top of her head. Lenora placed her hand on his thigh, which caught him by surprise. She gazed up at Jacob as he then took his right hand and wrapped it around her waist bringing them closer. Their gaze intensifying as their hunger for each other was about to explode. Jacob lips hovered over hers, still staring into each others eyes as Lenora’s hand came up to Jacob’s face, she stroke his cheek with her thumb.
“Jacob-” Lenora began to speak but before she could continued Jacob’s lips collided with hers. Her heart skipped a beat in that moment, everything stood still for those first few seconds. Their passion flowing through their lips, begging for more. Jacob pulled her closer to his body, he wanted to feel her. Their tongues fought for dominance as Jacob began to guide her head backwards towards the seat. They broke from their kiss as she laid on the seat of the carriage with her legs still dangling on the floor. Jacob looked down to her with his signature smirk.
“You’re beautiful.” He breathed as he dove down and began peppering her neck with kisses. She stretched her neck out so he had easier access, his lips met with the tender spot on her neck as she let out a moan. Jacob knew he had found her sweet spot so he began to light suck and bite as that spot, causing her to let out a few more moans. Hearing her cry out like that from his actions he began to get excited and he could feel the tightness growing in his pants as he felt Lenora’s hand graze his growing erection, it twitched under her touch which caused him to moan against her size. She began to fumble with his belt buckle when the carriage came to a sudden stop, Jacob who had steadied himself over Lenora fell to the carriage floor. “Oi! What in the bloody hell?” Jacob screamed knowing the Rooks knew what was going on in the carriage. As he grabbed the door handle to the carriage to see why they stopped he heard a ring of gunshots from outside the carriage. Jacob lunged himself over Lenora as he heard over 12 gunshot go off outside. The suddenly stop, Jacob looked around and grabbed a gun that he had stashed in the carriage behind the seat before leaving. He checked the rounds and grabbed a few extra. He slipped the gun in his pocket, grabbing his cane sword quickly. He looked to Lenora who looked terrified. “Stay here, I will protect you my love.” He said as he turned to leave the carriage. Lenora grabbed his arm before he opened the door, she pulled him in and kiss him quickly.
“Please come back to me.” She whispered as he got out of the carriage.
Oh god! I am sorry for the lack for updating. I am hoping I can get back into the swing of things and update this more.
Oh a good note with out spoiling much, next chapter = smut ;)