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#51 Old 12th Apr 2008 at 11:05 AM
This is a great story! Fantastic updates again, brilliantcat!
Lab Assistant
#52 Old 12th Apr 2008 at 11:16 AM
brilliantcat, you are the best. Seriously. I LOVE the storyline.
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#53 Old 18th Apr 2008 at 10:04 AM
Default Raven's Hollow: A Legacy (Part 8)
Another damn long day, Aleydis thought as she trudged home that evening. She had gotten into a fight with her boss after lunch and quit in a fit of pique. Now there was no money to use for the restoration until she found a new job. She had no idea how she was even going to pay her rent. A feeling of anxiety settled in her gut like an icy knife. It grew sharper as she got closer to home. By the time she reached her block, she was at a near-jog. She tried to fight the rising panic as she struggled to get the key into the lock. Panting, she tumbled through the door, slamming it and locking it. What the hell is wrong with me?

The terrible anxiety worsened. She turned on the outdoor lights, scanning the yard. Nothing out there, she told herself sternly. But something's wrong. I can feel it. Turning and resting her back on the door, she willed her breathing and pounding heart to slow. The phone's abrupt ring made her jump.

“Hello? Yes, this is...” Her hands shaking, Aleydis brushed an errant strand of hair from her face. It was the phone, you idiot. CALM DOWN. “Certainly Mr. Tan, I'll be there at 2 pm, with the book I'd like you to look at. Good evening to you too.” Still jumpy, she quickly made her ablutions and crawled into bed. There was still a lingering uneasiness, but she felt a bit calmer. She caressed the old book before she packed it in her tote for her meeting. Please, she begged mutely, unsure to whom she was appealing. Please let him be able to help me.

Aleydis woke from a restless night and spent the morning tidying up. Geez, I let this place go lately. Guess I've just been so busy. Scrubbing and other domestic chores had the benefit of keeping her mind off the remaining flicker of anxiety from the day before. A little before two, she headed out for her meeting several blocks away. Although it was brisk, the sun shone brightly and the walk was pleasant. As she passed the bus stop, Aleydis felt the skin between her shoulderblades crawl. She tried to surreptitiously glance behind her, but there was a crowd waiting for the bus.

Unnerved, she walked on. Suddenly something hit her with what felt like the force of a charging bull. She landed heavily, the wind knocked out of her. Dimly, Aleydis felt her forehead bounce off the sidewalk, pain racing across her face like a lightning strike. Trying to will air back into her lungs, she lay there stunned. Someone from the bus stop helped her to her feet. She swayed dizzily, her vision blurred. Fighting to stay upright and failing, she slumped to the ground.

“ALY!” Tucker's voice sounded muffled. “Aly, talk to me! Are you ok? Jesus, your head is bleeding! I was on my way to work when I saw you, please be ok, just say something, please!”

Drawing a painful breath, she rasped, “Tucker? My head hurts...” Aleydis started to cry.

“Shhh, it's ok.” He supported her with a hand under her arm. “My truck is close, can you walk a bit?”

“I... I think so.” She wobbled a bit, her stomach heaving. “I think I'm gonna be sick though.”

“S'ok.” Tucker practically carried her the block or so to the parking lot and settled her in the truck.

He drove to his apartment, babbling to her all the while. Once she was ensconced on the couch, he scrubbed her forehead. Aleydis hissed in pain. “Looks like you've got a pretty decent bruise too,” he remarked, as he dabbed ointment on the cut. “This might need stitches... what the hell happened?”

“I was walking past the bus stop when something, someone attacked me... I'm not sure of too much after that.” She looked around for her bag. “Tucker, did you get my bag? I had a blue toile tote... It's not here.”

“I didn't see one.” He headed into the kitchen. “I'm going to make you some hot tea.”

Aleydis was stricken. “It had the book in it! For my appointment with Mr. Tan! Oh god! NO!”

#54 Old 18th Apr 2008 at 10:57 AM
Tucker always seems to pop up, hmmm.... that in itself is suspicious!
Lab Assistant
#55 Old 18th Apr 2008 at 2:59 PM
I wonder what knocked her down! It feels a bit supernatural. :O
#56 Old 18th Apr 2008 at 6:07 PM
"Mrs. Crumplebottom, look where you throw that purse!!" :laugh:
Great. Just great. I wanted to see what was in that darn book! I think Tucker knows something, and he's a big evil meanie! We need a knight in shining armor for poor Aleydis!
Lab Assistant
#57 Old 18th Apr 2008 at 6:53 PM
I agree, Tucker seems to show up at the most convenient times.....great update!
#58 Old 18th Apr 2008 at 6:59 PM
Just caught up on the last few chapters, I really love your writing style :D
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#59 Old 18th Apr 2008 at 7:09 PM
Originally Posted by annachibi
"Mrs. Crumplebottom, look where you throw that purse!!" :laugh:

I wish I'd thought to have Crumplebutt attack her :handbag: You'll learn more in the next update though Some things about Tucker's weirdness will be revealed. Not all, I have to keep some surprises y'know!
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#60 Old 23rd Apr 2008 at 6:50 AM
Default Raven's Hollow: A Legacy (Part 9)
Aleydis' stomach clenched and she barely made it to the bathroom in time. Tucker found her, soaked with sweat and shaking, huddled on the floor.

"Aly, you're staying here tonight. No buts, no arguments, nothing. I'm sure I have something that should fit you and I'll be on the couch. You can lock the bedroom door if you want." He picked her up as though she were weightless and deposited her in his bedroom. Too ill to talk, she nodded mutely in agreement. "I'm going to go check on that tea. You need it even more now. Just one sec and I'll bring it to you." He had concern written on his face; Aleydis was grateful for his presence.

Tucker returned with the steaming mug of tea, wrapping her hands around the mug to warm them. Aleydis sipped delicately. Her stomach seemed to have calmed for the time being but she wasn't going to risk tossing her cookies a second time by guzzling it. Tucker sat beside her on the bed, neither of them talking.

Finally he broke the silence. "I said I'd take care of you the day I met you. I still mean it, even if you don't want to be with me."

"Thank you. It's more than I deserve. I'm so glad you were there for me today, I hope you know how much I appreciate this. Most guys would have tossed me out on my ass."

"I'm not most guys. And for the love of all that's holy, you were bleeding! You probably have a goddamn concussion, I couldn't just leave you there!"

"You could have, but you didn't." Aleydis felt her eyelids drooping. She tried to hide a yawn.

Tucker made a face at her. "You're completely done in, no more talking tonight." He rummaged in the dresser and handed her a pile of clothes. "Get in bed and get some rest. You need it." Allowing her privacy to change, he returned long enough to settle her into bed then closed the door with a faint click.

A bladder near to bursting woke Aleydis some time later. She could see the pink and purple tendrils of dawn snaking their way across the sky. She went to the door and could hear Tucker's voice. Unable to make out what he was saying, she cracked the door.

"I didn't know you were going to HURT her!" Tucker was pacing with the phone to his ear, making no effort to control his voice. "I know, I know. I was working on it! Things weren't going exactly as planned..." He looked stricken. "Yes. I understand. I know. I KNOW." The agitation in his voice was apparent. "She's asleep. I doubt she'll wake till morning, I slipped some Valium in her tea." Aleydis covered her mouth to keep a gasp from escaping. What the hell is going on? "No, she's staying here. I know. Goddammit don't you think I know that! I couldn't forget if I tried. Just... don't worry, I'll take care of it." He laid the phone down and sighed.

Her insides turned to ice, Aleydis tiptoed back to bed. A moment later, she heard the creak of the door. She could feel his eyes on her and forced herself to repress a shudder.

Lab Assistant
#61 Old 23rd Apr 2008 at 8:14 AM
Oh WOW, a brilliant update! I sure didn't expect THAT from Tucker.
#62 Old 23rd Apr 2008 at 1:05 PM
He always did give me the creeps! I hope she's not pregnant with his baby, yuck!
#63 Old 23rd Apr 2008 at 2:24 PM
Yeah, she seems to be exhibiting signs, hm?
That ass! *smacks Tucker* >:(
Lab Assistant
#64 Old 23rd Apr 2008 at 6:37 PM
Originally Posted by romyhorse
He always did give me the creeps! I hope she's not pregnant with his baby, yuck!

no freakin kidding! great update :D
Lab Assistant
#65 Old 23rd Apr 2008 at 7:16 PM
Ooohhh. I knew she should have trusted her cat's intuition! Now, I wonder what he "couldn't forget if [he] tried". Is someone blackmailing him? Threatening to murder his elderly mother? It has better be good, else we will feed him to the man eating flies!
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#66 Old 7th May 2008 at 1:50 AM
Default Raven's Hollow: A Legacy (Part 10)
After a sleepless night filled with waking nightmares, Aleydis wanted nothing more than to go home. However, she knew she had to confront Tucker about what she had overheard. Aly girl, you're great at blinding yourself to things you don't want to see but you can't possibly ignore what you heard. Get a grip and just do it and get it over with. Her sweater had speckles of blood on it, but she couldn't stand to have Tucker's clothing touching her skin any longer. She changed hurriedly and went to face him.

“Tucker?” She cracked the bedroom door. He was sleepily arising from the couch. And no wonder, he didn't even lie down until dawn. She felt a grim satisfaction in his red eyes and clear exhaustion. I hope he's suffering.

“Aly, you're awake... I didn't expect you to be up this early, you had a trying day.” I'll just bet you didn't, you slimy little toad. What kind of person drugs someone they profess to care about? Tucker scrubbed a fist over his eyes like a child and rumpled his hair.

Aleydis straightened, mustering all the dignity she could. “I know what you did.”

Those simple words had as much effect as if she had stabbed him. He fidgeted guiltily. “How did you know?” My god, he's not even trying to deny it...

Fuming at his utter lack of remorse, she could barely rein her temper. “I heard your phone call. You spent all day yesterday telling me how you cared for me, you were so kind and sweet... but all along you were responsible for my pain! You... are.. a... monster!” She punctuated each word with a sharp jab to his chest.

Tucker blanched at the word 'monster'. “Aly, I can't excuse what I did, but it's not what you think... I DO care for you. I didn't expect to, I didn't plan to... that's part of what's created this mess.” He sank heavily into the cushioned couch. “I had to do it, I had no choice!”

“I don't want to hear it! What could possibly drive someone to drug another human being and arrange for them to be beaten and mugged?”

“I can't tell you! If I do, we're both in danger!”

Aleydis stared blankly at him for a moment then laughed mirthlessly. “You're crazy. Certifiable. I am not listening to a second more of this. I don't know what's so important about an old, unreadable book that you had to have me attacked for it. I don't know why you lied to my face and pretended to care about me. I don't know, and I really don't care. All I know is you got me drunk the day you met me, drugged me last night, forced yourself on me when I was incoherent, and had me beaten. The only danger I'm in is from YOU. You're a liar. You are a sick, sick bastard. I'm leaving.”

“Aly please! You don't understand!”

Without a backward glance, she slammed the door so hard the windows rattled and stalked off, leaving Tucker sobbing brokenly.

#67 Old 7th May 2008 at 2:01 AM
*high-fives Aleydis* w00t! You go, girl! :D
I don't care what his excuse is, it could be that he's trying to save the whole friggin' world, he could have gone about it differently. But then, if he had, you wouldn't have much of a story, would ya, Cat?
Lab Assistant
#68 Old 7th May 2008 at 3:48 AM
Ick. I still feel a trifle bad for him. He's pathetic! Either way, he shouldn't have involved her in whatever nonsense he got himself into. He could have just crept into the house and stolen the book! Sheesh.
Love the update though!
Test Subject
#69 Old 11th May 2008 at 5:34 AM
oooh great story Brilliantcat! I've been meaning to read it for awhile

Im glad Aleydis told Tucker off... I never liked that guy from the start!

Field Researcher
#70 Old 11th May 2008 at 3:38 PM
Oh, dear I wonder what he's really into... Can't wait for an update! I have a feeling the plot is about to thicken! Great job!
Lab Assistant
#71 Old 11th May 2008 at 9:53 PM
I don't like Tucker!!!!!!!!
Great story, love it:D
Test Subject
#72 Old 12th May 2008 at 1:41 AM
Wow, what an interesting turn of events! You sure know how to keep a reader engaged brilliantcat, :D. Tucker is such an ass, I really want to find out his reason for do it now and Aleydis to get her book back! =]
Test Subject
#73 Old 12th May 2008 at 5:41 AM
Ohhh I love your story! Good job!
Lab Assistant
Original Poster
#74 Old 12th May 2008 at 5:44 AM
Thank you guys so much! I've written up to Part 12 or 13 so I just need the time to get the pictures for the next update. Early this week I hope.

A lot is going to be happening in Raven's Hollow very soon...
Lab Assistant
#75 Old 15th May 2008 at 2:08 AM
i just found this legacy and it's SO COOL!
keep updating! this is probably one of the best Legacy's ever
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