the shadows of white chapel

"tell me" the pure darkness in her eyes flickered for a moment "what is hope? what is such pity, that you speak of"

Joanna knew that there was no point in trying to run away from the Lanes family. It was like trying to run away from herself, but when the human boy and pianist, Elliot, found his way to the home of her 'keepers' she began to realise the nature of the shadows of white chapel, and the true darkness that lies within them


1. prologue

"Miss Colrez?”

Light streamed though dark laced windows onto the tiled floor, making the shadowed drawing room appear surreal and beautiful. A grandfather clock ticked on the left wall in the corner quietly, and the amber light of the dimming fire outlined the darkened profile of a woman, sat on one of the fine cushioned seats facing the hearth. She did not look at Joanna but instead gazed at the moon from a slant in the curtains, as a lady, her long brown hair tumbled in lose curls down her back that shimmered in the firelight. She was obscenely beautiful, maddeningly so, yet there was coldness to her like the reflection of a mirror, empty, without feeling.

Joanna took a step forward, uncertain of why she came to this place. Every fibre of her being told her she should not be here, yet there was a tone to the letter that Mr Lanes had sent, a matter of urgency. He was standing behind the Mahoney desk across the room from her, a cup of tea in his hand; his lose blond curls drifted across his fixated eyes, steady and cold. “I’m so glad you could come” he continued.

“Good evening” Joanna mumbled, unable to dissuade her gaze from room around her. She had never been inside the Lanes drawing room. It was, as the rest of what she seen of Lane’s manor of expensive taste and quite elegant, shadowed, and disarming in grandeur. Much like the Lanes themselves.

“I am really, so very sorry my dear to call you here on such an hour” Mr Lanes put his cup of tea down. A fraction of moonlight caught the liquids surface. Joanna at least presumed it was tea. The nature of the beverage seemed…thicker. Indeed almost syrup like. He walked round the desk and approached her, smiling kindly. “We simply could not risk this procedure during the daylight hours, and besides, we must sleep”

“What…are you talking about?” Joanna asked quietly, gripping the strap of her leather satchel. Mr Lanes stepped forward and in an instant, suddenly had her pale smooth hand at his mouth. There was a moment where she caught a glance of two, razor white needles, and then the searing, burning pain that spread up her arm from the wrist. She screamed aloud, and dropped the bag which fell with a heavy thud to the floor as the pain spread closer to her heart. Her blood began to boil, cold, piercing agony seeping into her brain as she watched the bloodstain on her sleeve grow. As her screaming continued, the young woman by the fireside continued to gaze unfazed at the pale new moon from the window, taking a sip from the delicate teacup in her ivory hands.

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