The Inferno's Claim
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[Warning: Mature Content] ------ The world is aware of creatures that lurk in the dark—at least quite a number of them are. After the most brutal battle the planet has ever experienced took place centuries ago, rules were set in order to maintain peace between the supernatural and the general public. It is one that compels all mythical beings to keep their existence hidden - a solution to prevent the masses from getting terrorized by the knowledge of the magical world. But as we all know, secrets don't stay hidden forever. What happens when a girl who has always been obsessed with the idea of paranormal creatures discovers they aren't legends? Just as she is yet to digest this unforeseen reality, the unexpected happens. Her life takes a short spin and all she once knew is toppled over.
In a dimly lit room in which the only source of light was the gentle rays of sunlight reflecting through the tiny space that the thick and vintage curtains hung on the double door window missed covering, a small figure could be seen curled up in a queen-sized wooden bed. Her mid-waist fiery hair was sprawled over the soft pillows - a stark contrast to the grey cotton linens.
She let out a low groan as she slowly drifted awake from her deep slumber. Her head was pounding as though she carried the weight of the entire world alone.
Genova's groggy, sapphire blue eyes took a moment of adjustment to her surroundings and noticed she was back in her bedroom. A slight frown graced her smooth and youthful forehead as she wondered if yesterday's event was only her imagination?!
Could she have merely dreamt of all that happened on her sixteenth birthday?
She shook her head to arrange her thoughts, but the pounding in her head was impossible to ignore. It was making her reasoning and focus unstable.
Though she often had migraines, it however, was never to this extent. And for a fact, she knew it had something to do with last night. Her mind couldn't have possibly made all of that up!
'But how did I get home?' She wondered.
'Probably made it back before I fully blacked out!'
Or perhaps, the dreadful experience on her sixteenth birthday was indeed just her imagination. Otherwise, how else could she explain how she had managed to get out unscathed from a situation that almost ruined her life?
Genova hoped her parents went to bed early because the last thing she wanted was them worrying about her even more than they already had.
A sad sigh left her throat as she slowly yet gingerly crawled out of bed. So much for her much-anticipated 16th birthday celebration which of course, ended up in a disaster.
Thank God not much damage was done! But why was her recollection so disorganized? Why can't she remember anything after she had blacked out?
Genova made a mental note to avoid pubs at all costs. She didn't want the same event to retake place in the future. For now, she will push back all the negativity her dream/last night's deed had stirred within her and focus on the life ahead of her.
It was Sunday and she couldn't be happier. That being the case, perhaps she should strive for a little more sleep since her body was desperately crying for it.
She glanced at the nightstand and saw it was still pretty early. The antic golden alarm clock she had received from her dad on her fifteenth birthday and had kept beside her bed since that day showed it was only 6: 58 am.
There was no need for an early rise today because she wasn't required to be at work or school. The good thing about weekends!
With that, she laid back down and soon drifted back to sleep.
It was 11:25 am when her eyes fluttered open again.
And with the burning sensation in her stomach, she knew she had to get something to eat soon before it worsened. She was famished!
And to her relief, the throbbing headache from before had also eased significantly. Thus, Genova got up, showered then headed down for brunch.
Her mom Mary was sitting on the kitchen couch alone with a cup of tea placed in front of her when Genova came in.
"Good morning, honey," Mary smiled warmly at her daughter.
"Good morning, mom." Genova returned the pleasantry and leaned in to kiss her mother on the cheek. "I hope your sleep was sound?!" She added after pulling away from the older woman.
Mary chuckled. "My night was well rested, honey. I could say the same about yours; I came to inform you of breakfast earlier but found you deep asleep."
Genova's mind took a quick spin to the night before and unknowingly pursed her lips. She was still unsure exactly what had happened or if her parents were aware of anything. But looking at her mother right now, the woman seemed so relaxed, a reaction that contradicted how it would be should her mom have found out about her unanswered questions.
She was snapped out of her reverie when she heard, "Come, sit while I fix you something to eat." Mary patted the space beside her, signaling her daughter to come closer.
"Hmm." She hummed and sat down beside her mom.
Mary took a new teacup from the tray and filled it with a pinkish-reddish liquid. "Here, have some tea while I prepare you brunch."
"Have I told you how wonderful you are, mom?"
"I am not so sure... but always happy to hear," Mary said with a wink.
Genova chuckled while bringing the cup to her lips and took a sip from the hot liquid. Her eyes shut close as she hummed in satisfaction.
"I could never get bored with your cooking and tea skills, mom. No one can beat you in these, I tell you," she commented while grinning from ear to ear.
Mary let out a low laugh and shook her head. "You and your father are the people that matter the most to me. And as the saying goes, 'the best way to a man's heart is through his stomach'. And that extends to you, my dear!"
Images of her dad's face and how he always made such delightful sounds which always came off annoying to her mom whenever he ate, flashed through Genova's mind. Her head couldn't help but tilt back as she reverberated in a burst of laughter.
Mary's smile broadened. "I know what must be running through that head of yours. The fact that you immediately started laughing after my remark about your father... It can only be about him."
"You know me too well, mama."
"Indeed I do. You are my child, after all!" Mary stated while walking back to the dining table with a bowl of lentil soup and three slices of flat bread.
"Thanks, mom," Genova said with the utmost gratitude. Then she picked up a soup spoon and started digging into her food. But as she did, her mind suddenly registered that she had not seen her dad anywhere.
"Where is dad?" She inquired.
"Oh, he's out! Should be back soon, honey."
"Ok!" Genova said nothing more as her attention returned to her food.
Mary refilled her teacup and kept tapping the table with her fingers while watching her daughter eat.
Genova noticed the older woman's unusual behavior. "Is something bothering you, mom?" She asked, narrowing her eyes.
Mary paused as it registered on her that she had been tapping the table while her mind wandered away. She forced a smile with, "Nothing to worry about, dear. I will tell you after you finish your food."Genova felt even more on edge. She took the bowl of soup and gulped the liquid down her throat in one goal.
"There, I'm done!" She said, showing her mom the empty soup bowl and urging the woman to begin.
"Indeed!" Mary sighed. "Well, your father and I decided to have you move in with your aunt in Wooddale." She continued, "You know your chance of finding a decent job is higher in big cities. A small town like Roseville has too little to offer a girl like you."
The News (2)
"Well, your father and I both decided to have you move in with your aunt in Wooddale." She continued, "You know your chances of finding a better job are higher in big cities. A small town like Roseville has too little to offer a girl like you, my child."
Genova went stiff upon hearing that.
Her eyes shut up at her mom, looking so taken aback.
Mary let out a deep sigh seeing the look of shock on her daughter's face. Admittedly, the older woman had expected this exact reaction because anyone close to them would have deduced how inseparable their family of three was.
Genova was a child who had never been away from her family since the day she came into their lives. So this sudden news would surely be hard for her to digest.
Leaning over the table to take her daughter's hands, "Child, as parents, you have to believe that we will always do what's best for you. Your betterment will always come before ours. And this d
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