Lineage

A sister and brother are thrown into a world of monsters and supernatural beings, while discovering that they themselves may or may not be who they have always believed.

This novel is under construction and I would greatly appreciate any feedback.

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1. Intro

Somewhere deep off in the distance, a steady dripping sound began to register inside her head. Slowly building, the incessant drip, drip, drip began to grow from a small annoyance into an anvil smashing hammer straight into her skull.  It grew louder and louder until she couldn’t take it anymore and she shot up off the floor.

Forcing open her eyes, she was greeted by nothing but dark murky shadows and slight hazy slivers of light. She tried to bring her hands up to slide the hair out of her face but found both of them bound behind her back.

“Aneli?” asked a voice from nearby. It was rough and a bit hoarse but she recognized it.

“Aiden!” replied Aneli. “What happened? Where are we?”

In the shadows her brother was sitting up cross legged, only a few feet from her in the small room. His hair which was normally an auburn brown, was now matted down in places and crusted with the dark crimson of dried blood.

“I don’t know, but we need to get out of here.” He groaned as he got to his feet and shuffled towards her.

Surveying the room, Aneli took in a small workshop of some kind. Old rusty tools lined the walls and a dusty work table sat along one side of the room. An ancient sink in a corner proved to be the source of the maddening drip.

Aneli gingerly limped up to the work bench. Her right leg was covered in bruises she had no memory of getting. As she hunted the table top for something that might help free her hands, her brother came up beside her. He gripped the zip tie that had been binding his wrists in one hand. She stared at him astonished.

"How did you..." she began, but just then, outside the room's door a shout went up.

"Stop right there!" a voice barked out.

There was a loud bang and the thick metal door bent inwards. The hinges squealing in protest.

Aneli's hands flopped down to her sides. She turned and saw her brother holding a rusty pair of pruning shears and the zip tie that held her wrists prisoner.

Aiden picked up a hammer and handed it to her. She accepted it with shaky hands and wide eyes. He then grabbed himself an old crowbar and they faced the wounded door.

They heard a low growling noise on the other side. A primal animal sound that chilled the blood in their veins. There was another heavy thud and the door warped a little more. They could see light and shadows between the gaps in the frame where the edges of the door used to sit. Glimpses of something big showed through those gaps.

They stared in horror as what looked like a hand made its way through one of the holes. It was covered in black fur and each finger ended in long razor sharp claws. Each finger was elongated and appeared to contain an extra knuckle. Another hand gripped the door on the other side and accompanied by an animalistic howl, the door was ripped from its hinges.

Aneli and Aiden had turned away to shield their eyes from any flying debris. When they turned back, the doorway was empty.

They looked at each other then back at the door.

"Get behind me." whispered Aiden

They inched their way towards the exit and carefully negotiated their way around the scrap metal heap that used to be the door.

Cautiously peering around the door jam they found that they were at the end of a long hallway. Industrial  business doors lined the walls on both sides and long incandescent lights flickered overhead.  A set of lockers faced them from across the doorway they peered through. From the end of the row of lockers a human leg peeked out. They quietly made their way towards it and discovered the rest of the man that was attached to it. He lay on his side and the dark grey uniform he was wearing was covered in blood. Most disconcerting was the machine gun he wore from a strap around his neck.

Aiden crouched down and peered closer at the man. He was breathing, just barely. The sleeves of his shirt were shredded and from what he could tell, the arms underneath weren't in much better shape. His legs were bent in unnatural angles and across his scalp was a grisly gash that would need at least a few hundred stitches to even begin to remedy.

Aiden stripped the man of his gun and began to rise. He stopped short as he caught a glimpse of a tattoo on the inside of the man's wrist. It was etched in black ink and appeared to be a symbol of some kind. It appeared to illustrate five stars with a single drop of liquid coalescing beneath them.

There was a loud bang as one of the doors a little ways down the hallway was thrown open. A man rushed in sporting an identical gray uniform to the man on the ground. He also gripped a matching gun.

"Hold it!" shouted the man.

Aneli was in the process of raising her hands in surrender when a loud roar erupted. The ceiling above the guard collapsed upon him, followed by an immense beast. It rose from the rubble in a cloud of dust. Although crouching, the creature had to be well over eight feet tall. It was covered in black fur from its feet up to its pointy ears.

 Grabbing the leg of the man it just descended upon, it raised him up and tossed him down a side hallway with no more effort than a child would expend throwing a doll.

The creature turned to look at Aneli and Aiden. They stared back in utter shock.  They were face to face with a real life werewolf. Saliva dripped from its teeth and blood trailed down its nails, taining the floor red with droplets of crimson.

There was the sound of boots running from the hallway the man had been tossed down.  A deafening rattle of gunfire went off and the beast flinched as it took a number of hits.

It turned, bellowed out a roar and loped down the hallway towards the source of the gunfire.

Aiden grabbed Aneli's arm and pulled her past the debris on the floor. They raced along, hearing gun fire and roars every now and then from far off places. Other times they sounded way too close.

They hobbled and moved as fast as they could push themselves, passing numerous corridors that all looked the same. They attempted to open door after door but all were either locked tight or opened to empty rooms.

They were abruptly plunged into darkness. Aneli barely kept a scream from escaping her mouth while Aiden spewed forth a strain of profanity muttered under his breath. After a few seconds the security lights switched on, bathing everything in an eerie shade of red. Shadows sprung forth giving  previously inanimate objects a supernatural cast of living creepiness.

They pushed on, slowly making their way down the hallway. They came to a dead end with only a single door left to try. Once again they found the door locked. Aiden let out an exasperated groan. Aneli put a hand on his shoulder and pushed him aside. Channeling all the fear and adrenaline that pumped through her, she let out a fierce snarl. Raising the hammer she carried over her head, she brought it down upon the door handle and it gave in with a squeal of protest, dropping to the ground.

Using the barrel of his gun, Aiden began pushing open the door. He encountered a bit of resistance and pushed harder. A hand crept around the edge of the door and pulled it open. What was left of a man stood in the doorway, dressed in a tattered blood smeared guards uniform. The right half of his face was shredded and the glaring white of exposed bone peeked out in various spots. He stared at them through milky, cataract spotted eyes and began to moan. A chorus of similar hungry, blood craving moans went up in the dark behind him. A horde of undead began moving towards them, some walking, others shuffling slowly. One legless corpse even dragged herself along the floor leaving a trail of blood and gore behind her.

Before he had a chance to react, the lead zombie grabbed the barrel of Aiden's gun. More out of panicked reaction than actual thought, Aiden pulled the trigger. He fired every shot the magazine contained. Bullets flew through the zombie but still it stood. The undead crowd behind it were sprayed with blood and bullets. The zombie's steel grip on the gun never waivered. Walking forward, it impaled itself on the gun, inch by inch pulling itself closer. Its putrid stink all but suffocated Aiden. He couldn't take his eyes from those of the walking corpse. Hands grabbed his shoulders and pushed him aside. He released the gun just as his sister's hammer buried itself in the zombie's head. Instantly the zombie hit the ground and the siblings wasted no time turning and fleeing as quickly as they could.

They again found themselves lost in a maze of halls and doors. They made it down two more hallways before they found luck on their side and discovered an exit.  A heavy security door had been ripped open and left in a heap. Beyond the door was a stairwell. They started to limp up the stairs when they heard shouts and footsteps behind them. A look over their shoulders showed a gun toting guard coming after them.

He stopped and took aim, following them up the stairs with the barrel of his gun.  A blur of fur, snarls and teeth came out of nowhere knocking him out of sight.

They climbed as quickly as they could up four flights of stairs. Forcing open a door at the top of the stairs they spilled out into a darkened room.

Loud, shrill horns sounded and ear piercing screams all around them drilled straight into their heads.

They both ducked, bringing their arms up to shield themselves. They awaited whatever form of destruction surrounded them. Endless moments passed and the overwhelming noises began to dwindle. The passing seconds  ticked by and the surety of their imminent deaths began to fade.

The lights flicked on. Slowly lowering their hands, they found that they had burst into a children's birthday party. Shocked faces stared at them, party horns drooped from little mouths and birthday candles flickered in front of a small girl wearing a tiara.

Aneli stared past the shocked faces and saw that they were in the back of a store. From the racks of stuffed animals, cute accessories and bins full of stuffing, she deduced it was one of those "build your own pet" mall boutiques.  They had just inadvertently crashed the rear party room.

They slowly collected themselves, murmured apologies to wide eyed children and shocked parents and began to make their way to the exit.

They had just about made it when the door they had come through burst open. The werewolf filled the door frame. Chest heaving and jaws gaping, it look around until it locked eyes on them.

In unison, they both turned and bolted out of the store fleeing into a crowded mall. As they ran Aiden yelled to Aneli, "This is certainly one messed up way to spend our 14th birthday!"

Two months earlier...
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