The first room they set foot into was a living room of sorts. All the furniture was covered with white sheets and it was cold, the wind whistling in through the broken window. Omi shone the flashlight around the room, setting light to the faded, peeling wall paper and grimy paintings.
"Nope, nothing in here," Yohji quickly evaluated. "Let's head on to the next room."
"Yohji-kun!" Omi glared at him. "We have to search all the rooms carefully! Do want Persia to send us back here a second time?"
A second time? Fuck no! Nervously, he glanced around. There didn't seem to be anything that looked suspicious. Of course, that was assuming that he was taking everything at face value, which he most assuredly was not.
He took a step back and staggered over the edge of the rug. He fell backwards onto the sofa, great hoards of dust billowing up all over the place.
"Aaahhhh!! It's an evil swarm of mad bees!!!! Heeeellllllpppp-ACHOOOO!" Yohji sneezed violently.
Omi quickly yanked the older boy into a standing position. "It's just dust, Yohji-kun," he explained, stifling his giggles. "Here." He handed Yohji some tissues.
After six consecutive sneezes, Yohji was more than ready to go. They trekked to the next room, another living room. It was pretty much the same as the first room. Covered furniture, moldy smell, dust galore.
Yohji carefully avoided all furniture and stayed very close to Omi, much to the younger boy's delight.
"Nothing in this room either," Omi declared after a few minutes of searching. "I suppose we can-" he broke off, seeing Yohji staring at something. "Yohji kun? What is it?"
He yanked the flashlight from Omi's hand. "Over there." He shone the beam upon the fireplace that dominated the right side of the room. On the stone tiles before the hearth lay a metal poker. Impaled upon the poker was...something.
With a sudden desire to protect the younger boy, Yohji wrapped one lanky arm around the boy's slim waist and drew him close. Cautiously, they approached the fireplace.
Now that they were closer, they could see that the object was human shaped. It was about the size of a hand and made from cream-colored cloth. The crude doll had black X's made of yarn for eyes and a twisted piece of red yarn for a mouth. Fine blond hair was stitched to its head. The left side of the doll was ripped open and what appeared to be a bone was pushing out. The poker stabbed the doll straight through the middle and the surrounding cloth was tinted a dull red, almost as if the doll had actually bled.
"A voodoo doll," Yohji whispered, chills streaking up his spine. "With real human hair and human bone. I'll bet that's even real human blood."
Omi reached for the doll. "Here let me - "
Yohji jerked him back violently. "Are you crazy?" he hissed. "Who knows what the fuck that thing can do! Don't you dare touch it! I don't want anything to happen to you!"
The younger boy blushed in the dark, pleased that even though Yohji was scared, he was still looking out for him. "Wakatta."
They hurriedly left the room and made it to the next room. It was a dining room and everything was uncovered. Lavish mahogany china cabinets were stocked full of elegant china dishes. A dusty chandelier hung above the enormous dining table. It easily could have seated about twenty people. The whole table was set, once gleaming silver and china now caked with dirt and time.
"There's wine in the glasses," Omi pointed out quietly. "It's like everyone vanished before they could eat."
"Let's move on," Yohji responded hastily. "This room is really giving me the creeps."
Omi nodded. He felt the chilly vibes also. Both of them rushed out of the room, failing to notice the soggy mass of rotting flesh that was drooling out from behind the maroon brocade curtains.
The music room proved to be nothing more than a pile of dusty instruments, books and sheet music laying carelessly about. No strange instances of sin were asserting themselves so Yohji and Omi took that to mean this room was safe. There was a bit of a scare when Yohji accidentally bumped into the piano, sharp keys screeching suddenly.
Omi chuckled nervously as Yohji swore and hauled him off.
The kitchen proved to be another story.
The next few bedrooms were relatively normal. Aya was protecting me thoroughly now. He held me close to him and he'd scan the room for any abnormalities holding the candle away from me so that I couldn't see. It was no secret that I loved children and seeing those bloody dresses...I shuddered again.
Aya's hand tightened around me. I guess that was his way of trying to reassure me. But at this point, I don't think I could be reassured. I mean, that fucking merry-go-round had played all by itself!
My body was suddenly cold, icy shivers dancing along my spine. I knew that there was going to be something horrible in the next room, I could feel it.
Aya must have sensed it also because he turned to me. "Stay close to me, alright?"
I nodded, letting go of his hand to cling to his arm. He handed me the candle and drew his katana. Seeing the buttery light shine off the metal comforted me somehow.
Aya kicked open the door and the stale stench of vomity blood clotting washed over us.
I gagged and Aya held his breath. We entered and I held the candle high, my heartbeat crashing vehemently against my chest.
It was a lady's chamber, decorated in hues of pink and lavender and white, flowers printed on the thick carpet and upon the walls. The dresser was laden with jars and bottle of various cosmetics, as well as hairbrushes and ribbons and hand mirrors. In front of the dresser was a white chair and upon it was draped an old-fashioned petticoat. It must have been white at one time but now it was yellow with age. The hem was ripped off, leaving the garment jaggedly torn.
With a drowning sense of terror, I reluctantly raised the candle to glow upon the bed.
It was awful. Beyond awful. I cried out, dropping the candle as horror puddled deep in my gut. The flame was extinguished and we were plunged into blessed darkness. But the image still burned brightly in my mind.
On the bed, vulgarly sprawled out upon the flowered coverlet was a rotting corpse. It had once been a women, for she was clad in a white petticoat similar to the torn one draped over the chair near the dresser. She'd been decapitated, blood splattered thickly over the pillow where her head would have rested. Her decomposing arms hung limply over the sides of the bed, her legs nothing more than sticks of bone, coated with drying tissue. And near the bottom of her stomach gaped a large, bloody hole. Spewing out from it was a long, thin rope of flesh, a curved blob attached to it.
An umbilical cord with the fetus still joined to it.
I barely made it out of the room before I fell to my knees and vomited all over the mucky carpet. Everything that I'd ever eaten was coming out and tears stung at my eyes. What kind of place was this? Who would desecrate a pregnant woman like that?
Aya knelt down beside me, the relit candle burning dimly in his hand. He set it down and tenderly brushed my bangs away from my sweaty forehead. He said nothing as he stroked my back, showing more kindness in that one instant than he'd ever shown me before.
Finally I finished, coughing weakly. Dizzily, I managed to stand, with Aya's help.
"Are you okay?" he asked me softly, his arm wrapped firmly around my waist.
I laughed woodenly. "You must think I'm so weak. I really am - "
"Don't," he interrupted, his hand coming up to brush against my lips. "You and Yohji were right. This place is evil. But I won't let anything happen to you, Ken. I promise."
I nodded, wishing I had some water to get rid of the sour taste in my mouth. "I just hope Omi and Yohji are okay."
"They'll be fine and so will we. You understand that, right Ken?" His gloved hand cupped my chin, forcing me to meet dark plum eyes. "We have to finish searching this house. We don't want any innocent people to come here and get hurt."
His mouth curved slightly. "I knew you would."
The silence was thick and foreboding, shattered only by the soft thumping of our feet against the carpet.
I felt a hundred pairs of eyes watching us as we entered the library.
Omi marched towards the room after the music room, still smiling over Yohji banging into the piano and scaring himself silly. Both he and Ken were acting so scared and it really was funny! He hadn't realized that Yohji and Ken were so superstitious. Ken, he could understand but Yohji? That seemed weird. He hadn't thought that anything could scare the older boy.
But he wasn't complaining. If it kept Yohji close to him, then he was happy! He'd had a crush on the playboy for ages now and even though he was only protecting him, Omi still liked it. So for now, voodoo dolls or not, he was going to savor the moment.
"Keep close to me," Yohji ordered, scouring the hall.
Omi's smile grew just a little bit bigger. "Hai."
They crossed into the kitchen as Yohji shone the flashlight around. Omi gasped loudly and Yohji nearly dropped the flashlight.
The kitchen was nothing like a modern kitchen. There were no modern luxuries like a fridge or microwave or even a stove. There was a brick fireplace tucked on one end, a huge black pot hanging above piles of coals and ashes. The counters and cupboards were made of rotting wood and rats were scurrying here and there. A long table stood in the middle of the room, masses of molding food clinging to the wooden surface. On the far edge of the table were four chopping boards neatly lying side by side.
On the first board was a scattered pile of shredded papers and an ink jar. The second board was a bloody mess and resting in the middle of the vicious liquid was a human brain. Numerous needles were protruding from the fleshy, pink mass. Upon the third board was a wooden cross wrapped in thorns. Scores of little, black bugs were weaving their way through the thorns and feasting upon the fleshy wood. And finally, the bones of what appeared to have been a cat graced the last board.
Omi turned away in absolute revulsion. "Yohji-kun..."
Yohji didn't waste a second. He hauled himself and his little teammate the high holy hell outta there.
The younger boy was shaking violently, his body a mass of tremors. Blue eyes were opened wide, his body numb with shock. "I didn't see...that couldn't have..."
"This is something evil here," Yohji stated grimly. "And I've got the feeling that this is only the beginning." He laced his fingers through Omi's. "We'll tough it out together, ‘kay kid?"
Omi had to swallow a number of times before he could reply. And even then, his voice was still raspy.
A faint scratching sound came from the tiny area beside the kitchen. It was a pantry, the wooden shelves crammed full with jars and bottles of food.
"Looks normal in here," Yohji muttered quickly, turning to go.
Omi seized Yohji's wrist, forcing the flashlight to beam towards the top shelf on the right. A row of large jars sat alongside each other. Each contained a watery-yellow liquid and a various type of organ or an animal. In the first was a mushy human heart, blue veins protruding, aorta and superior vena cave still intact. The next was a pair of sullen green eyes, staring brokenly eternally. A bat with its wings spread out was in the third, a blue snake in the forth. So on and so on, each jar holding a more repulsive object than the last.
In the last jar came the scratching sound. A pair of slender, wan female hands were suspended in the thin liquid, a diamond ring still on one finger. Long nails were painted crimson and slowly the hands were scratching the glass.
"Oh God..." Omi whispered, staring in fascinated terror.
And then, all at once, things came to life. The eyes blinked, the heart pumped. Bat wings spread, the snake hissed. Lips quivered, lungs expanded, bones bent.
"They're still alive," Yohji muttered in disbelief.
Outside the wind screamed like the dead and both blonds jumped. It didn't take them too long to flee.
The library was absolutely freezing. The huge window on the left side of the room was broken and the cold night wind was rushing in, the tattered curtains flapping violently. Shelves lined all the walls, stuffed fully with leather bound, dusty books. There were a couple of armchairs in the room, blanketed with white sheets. An oval shaped table stood before us, littered with papers and books and candles.
We warily crept forward and approached the table. "I don't think we should touch anything," I whispered apprehensively, glancing around.
Aya nodded, letting go of my hand. He moved around to the other side of the table to examine the many books that lay open to various pages.
I took a closer glance at the papers that were strewn all over the surface. The writing was something that I was unfamiliar with. I guessed it was Latin because, well don't devils always write in Latin? Most papers were covered with writing, a few even looked like they'd been written in blood. Then there were also a few papers that had strange symbols and drawings on them. Some were comprehensive sketches of various parts of the human anatomy, others were maps..
I didn't see the four colored sketches at first because I'd been studying a drawing that looked remarkably like the two, blond girls in the painting I'd seen earlier. They wore the same haunted expressions, the same shadowing ready to enfold them from behind.
I looked away, unable to bear looking at such a ghastly drawing. My eyes fell on the next few papers that were carelessly scattered about. The four colored drawings. The only drawings on the table that were in color.
My body was frozen as I stared at them. Ice dripped into my veins, my breath hitched. I must have made some small, startled noise because Aya was at my side in an instant.
Wordlessly, I pointed to the pictures.
He inhaled sharply, violet eyes opened wide.
The four pictures were detailed sketches of us.
"That's impossible," Omi was chanting over and over again. Living body parts and animals in jars of fluid was impossible!
Yohji said nothing but simply walked in grim silence. "I'll protect Omi no matter what," he promised himself. Nothing bad had happened so far, there was just a lot of really creepy shit going on, but still. Omi would remain safe as long as he was with him. He had to put his fears aside for Omi, which was a lot easier thought than done. This place was freaking him out.
"Do you think Aya-kun and Ken-kun are alright?" Omi wondered then, his voice quiet and worried.
He managed a smile and affectionately ruffled the boy's soft hair. "I'm sure they're both fine. If anything happened we'd have heard Ken yelling all the way down here."
Omi grinned back. "Can you picture Aya-kun waving his katana around, yelling 'Shi-ne ghost'?"
Yohji had to laugh at the mental image Omi's words provided. "Poor ghost. He'd experience death all over again."
"Ne, Yohji-kun?" Blue eyes looked up at him as the boy nervously chewed on his lower lip. "What do you think happened here?"
Sighing, he shrugged. "I have no clue. But something tells me that I don't wanna know."
Omi nodded. "Me either."
There had been another hallway leading from the kitchen that stretched out towards the back of the house. The first few doors were locked and for that both of them were infinitely glad. The next door that did open lead to a gentleman's sitting room.
And both of them were shocked.
The room was alive and filled with warmth. There was a fire gently burning in the fireplace, the clock on the mantle was tick tock-ing. The plants on the window sill were alive and healthy and a goldfish swam placidly in a bowl upon a table beside the armchair that stood in front of the fireplace. A lamp in the corner dimly cast a cozy glow upon the room.
"I don't believe it," Yohji murmured. "There is someone living here!"
Omi emphatically shook his head. "No, Yohji-kun." He gestured to the carpet which was encrusted with a dense sheet of dust. "If anybody had been in here then there would be footprints."
Frowning, he pushed down his sunglasses to study the floor. "What are you saying then? That a ghost did this?"
"I don...Yohji-kun look over there."
He followed the boy's finger. On the mantle, propped up against a china figurine of a milkmaid was a pale blue envelope. Written upon the face, in stark black ink were their names.
"A fucking envelope for us. Just fucking great." He rubbed at his temples, feeling a headache coming on.
Omi looked up at him. "Should we take it?"
"Oh Lord," he grumbled annoyed. "I hate these kinds of damned if you do, damned if you don't decisions. I mean it could be a trick. We could die. Or it might be a clue to help us get out of this mess alive."
"But how could...whoever...possibly know our names? I mean, it could just as easily have been Aya-kun and Ken-kun who came in here instead of us." Omi scratched at his head. "This doesn't make any sense."
"It never makes any sense," Yohji told him. "Evil forces always know your name."
Up until an hour ago, Omi would have scoffed at the idea of there being evil forces. Now he wasn't so sure. He merely nodded. "Let's open it. I wanna to know what's in it."
"Curiosity, the natural downfall of man," Yohji quipped.
Omi rolled his eyes. "Come on, we're wasting time. You probably want to know what's in it as much as I do."
Well, that he did. Yohji took Omi's hand and they slowly inched towards the mantle, continuously scanning their surroundings for any menacing creatures that might suddenly pop up. Nothing did but it never hurt to be prepared, especially when you were in a goddamn haunted house.
Yohji hesitated for a few seconds and then swiftly snatched the envelope. It didn't burn through his hands or burst into flames, so he supposed it was safe. For the time being anyways. He ripped the letter open, the envelope falling into the fire. The paper was cream colored and folded in half.
He unfolded it and held it out so they both could read. There was only one verse, written neatly in the middle of the page.
Twice fear instilling
Justice dimly burning Dragon's door creaking Leading to answers yearning.
Yohji read the lone verse three times. "What the fuck?!!!"
Omi took the paper from him and slowly read the verse out loud.
"How anticlimactic," Yohji muttered, raking a hand through his hair. "At the very least I'd expected a death threat."
"Well the first two lines are pretty self-explanatory," Omi decided, his brows coming together in a frown. "Twice fear would be you and Ken-kun. Justice is all of us since that's the purpose of Weiss. We're dim because this house is making us scared and uncertain. As for the last couple lines..." he trailed off, shrugging.
"I guess we're supposed to go through some door to find the answers," Yohji speculated. "But the thing is, do we do what it says or not?"
"Well we chose to take the envelope so we may as well follow this out. But I doubt we'll like what we're gonna find our."
Yohji couldn't have agreed more. A flick of the wrist sent the letter into the fire. "Let's go find this friggin' dragon door."
They both set off.
Part 3 | Fanfiction