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The creature's eyes narrowed, disgust pulling across unseen features at the explanation he was handed. His head turned slightly, regarding the arrogance in the creature on the floor below him. His fingers tightened on the banister as his shoulders hunched up behind himself. She came to [i gawk]. And he had foolishly let her into his chambers thinking- what, exactly? What was he expecting?
Frustration and hatred welled up molten and tight in his chest, a hiss of disdain seething through his teeth. He was not here to be looked at like some tamed beast, tested with her human customs and assumptions of civility and morality; [i examined]. With that an arm came up in a blur of black, and the static crackle of magic leapt into the air.
A rush of black, smoky energy rushed towards the human from the space the creature had occupied. It pushed into her and surrounded her vision. Seizing Audrey, wrenching otherworldly control of her body from her just briefly, it pulled her from her feet as if with wind itself as if it could culminate in an arresting, but barely there grip. The human woman was whisked out of the entryway with the roar of eldritch magic in her ears and hair. It hissed to her in the creature's seething, inhuman voice, "[B Begone with you, then, wastrel and scoundrel.]"
The front door swung closed as she was shoved out to the drive again and left. But the creature's voice stayed with her, pushing her towards the edge of the pond with a steady, immaterial strength. "[B Your kind disgust me.]"
And all at once it was gone. The energy released her and swept back to the house, disappearing under and in between the doors as they closed.
With that, all of the lingering lights in the manse went out, and the building was silent again. Shuttered. She was left with the sound of frogs and creatures just as she had been upon arrival.
[center [b "You are getting wax on my carpets,"]]
As she heard the voice again, the voice getting more human like, she straightened herself up, along with the candle, keeping the wax from dripping on the carpet below her once again. The wax was warm as it trickled down the candle stick, it falling a bit onto her head. She wouldn't lie but she was startled, and frightened. [i "s...sorry.."] she mumbled under her breath, apologizing to nothing.
But that soon changed as a dark shadow, with eyes appeared in front of her as she heard the voice one more time, clearly sounding angry towards her. Her eyes were wide as she stared at it, swallowing hard. Audrey opened her mouth to speak but as soon as she tried to push any words out, they caught in her throat, almost choking. Her eyes couldn't help but follow his movements, watching as a hand went to the banister, gripping onto it, the sound of names tapping, making her shiver.
[center [b "Speak."]]
Those words pierced through the trance she was in, finally able to find her voice. She wasn't scared. She wasn't scared! She rounded her shoulders, as she placed the candle back on the table and turned to face...whatever he was. It sounded like a man, so she was assuming it was one.
[i "I'm sorry. I wasn't trying to threaten you, you just started me..."] She started to explain. Still...it didn't give her a reason to trespass if he really lived there. [i "I came all this way from the small town..because there are rumors...of a monster that lives here, and I wan't to know if it was true..I know it doesn't justify trespassing but I do apologize, my curiosity has been burning to see who lived up here.."] She finished looking down, avoiding the shadows burning eyes.
[center [pic https://i.pinimg.com/564x/56/b6/c4/56b6c4a6e1151073132b29b8f8ab3261.jpg]]
The candle wax itself was still warmed from the flame in it just before. And when it was wielded, whipped around like that, the warmed wax from the pit the wick had been eating in the top flew out as it was pointed towards the unknown.
"[B You are getting wax on my carpets,]" came the voice again, sounding disdainful. And very human, if it was wrought with disuse.
A shape moved from the upper level of the foyer. Something large, and vaguely human shaped, but shrouded, the ember flecks of eyes underneath the shroud that was made of what seemed to be long hair were aimed at her.
"[B Trespassing and threatening me,]" it continued. "[B Who exactly do you think you are?]" there was a thread of cold anger in the voice. The eyes narrowed as another seemed to open somewhere around the creature's throat.
He kept himself shrouded for the time being, but did not move. If a candlestick was all she would threaten him with, fine, but the fact that the threat was present pushed irritation through him. He was in his own home. A slender hand went to the banister, tapping nails on it as he took hold of it lightly.
[center Audrey couldn't help but shiver from, not understanding why, she begun to look frantically around. Since she saw nothing, she continued to look around the room, her hand still lightly against the table with the single candle. She brought her slender finger up the sides of the candle, as she stared at it and then back around the room. [i "It's dark...but everything is so pretty.."] She mumbled to herself. Audrey normally wouldn't ever go into a place she wasn't sure about, but something drew her to this mansion. Was it really just curiosity? Ever since she could remember, she knew of the story of the [b 'Monster In the Manor.'] but she honestly believed it was a tall tale, to scare children at night. However...She wanted to see it for herself. Audrey was a beautiful maiden, with long brown hair that went down her back, with wide hazel brown eyes. Audrey was known among her town as head strong and caring. She was a fierce soul, but even a fierce soul could be terrified by the unknown.]
[center[b And what tiny creature has opened my door this night?]]
[center Audrey visibly flinched as she grabbed the candlestick and spun around holding her [i weapon] as if to fight the unknown voice. But she saw nothing. Which made her eyes widen, her pupils getting smaller as she felt herself to clamp up. [i "W..whos there? I have um..."] She stated and looked down at the candlestick, that she grasped tightly in her fist. [i "a weapon.."] she slowly trailed off, feeling completely idiotic from her statement.]
[center [pic https://i.pinimg.com/564x/ed/09/0c/ed090cc48a198a0fdfaaedec255bd924.jpg]]
The candle went out almost as soon as the woman's knuckles made contact with the door. The silence was heavier now, [i heard] as she entered. The house awaited her with bated breath- whether shocked at the entrance or knowing as well as she was that this was trespassing.
But the thing that resided inside of the house, too, heard the tremulous knock. It was the only sound in the manse other than his own breath and the snap of a fire in the hearth. His fingers arose in a lazy motion and as she had knocked- after a moment- the heavy lock bolt on the door snapped open. Ready for her to dare enter.
And she did.
The door groaned on heavy, ill-used hinges as it pushed pendulously away from her, in no rush to open fully. And then the dark interior and the smell of a snuffed wick was presented to her, lit with moonlight that paled the shined or gilt lacquered wood of the grand banisters and woodwork inside.
Directly in front of the stranger was the empty, vacuous portal that led into nothing. Cresting that was two grand staircases that swept up to end at a diadem-like clock face that sat still and silent. The decorative pendulum was lifeless and the face of the glass dusty.
The table she approached housed the single candle on the otherwise unused candelabra stood on the long, decoratively carved table under the window. A single curl of smoke was drifting softly up from the center wick.
All of the candles had long, trailing fingers of wax coming off of them. There was the slant of light coming from the right. The only light that illuminated dimly across the carpeting of the floor and guided the eye to a partially ajar secondary chamber off the foyer.
The creature closed his book, sighing quietly through his nose and allowed his body to dematerialize. But a wisp of mist himself now, he moved to abscond and see for himself what this little creature was, and perhaps glean what she wanted. The house on the surface held many wonders and if she were to loot, he would employ himself to ensure he lost nothing. The movement of his form through the door into the foyer where she stood was silent, other than his passing residue quietly making the door open with a breath, creaking as the front door had just so. A little wider.
But once she entered, those candles too went out, as if an unfelt breeze had done so. Leaving only the fireplace as the single source of light, and the moon slanting through the conservatory at the other end, glancing off of the piano.
"[B And what tiny creature has opened my door this night?]" came a low voice from somewhere behind her in between rooms.
[center [pic https://i.pinimg.com/564x/42/48/a4/4248a4717fab326b6b02c608e7d0b3db.jpg]]
[center [i [size20 "We don't go there. It's said a beast lives up there, hiding away.."]]]
She couldn't just accept that. Audrey stood tall at the end of the gravel drive, her feet frozen in place. Her curiosity was obviously getting the best of her, even as she knew the stories they told of the monster living in the mansion. Audrey gulped, beginning to bite at her bottom lip, causing it to turn red. [b 'There are no such things as [i monsters']] she thought to herself. Without a second thought, her legs started to move by themselves, walking down the drive. She started to feel uneasy, as she crept alongside the pond, reacting to every sound and movement around her. With each jump, and squeak, more and more fear started to creep in.
As she crept up closer, she soon made it to these wide steps, that lead to the door. Audrey couldn't help but stare at the outside of the mansion, a bit longer, barely noticing a dim light from the inside. This made her heart begin to pound deep in her chest, feeling all the blood move to her head. Her legs began to shake as she started to climb up the steps, her heart throbbing with each step she could take. As she reached the top of the steps, it was then, only arms length away from the door, did she realize how scared she truly was. With a shaky hand, she reached for the door and knocked slightly on the door, wondering what she would do if she received no answer from inside. She threw her hands down to her side and took a step back, preparing for the door to open.
[center[i[size20 'But of course it wouldn't be that easy..']]]
Audrey gulped as she waited for a response, and she felt burning disappointment in her chest. With all the buildup, she hadn't realized she been clenching her fist.She took a deep breath, shoving back her long brown hair over her shoulder, and straightened herself up. She didn't come all this was to see nothing! [size10 But what did she come here to find?] That small thought burned in the back of her mind, but it was easily blown out as her hand reached for the door knob, giving it a quick turn, and [b push]. She could hear her heart in her eardrums now, as she pushed the door open, stepping inside the darkened mansion. The only light that was in the mansion, was the moonlight that shown through the open door. It made everything shimmer from the light that was touched, but the silence hung in the air as she took another step inside, her hand traveling over a table that was in the room. She licked her lips as she let out a shaky breath to speak.
[left [pic https://i.pinimg.com/564x/d0/1d/c9/d01dc95bb8542994bd732bf4110a1741.jpg]] The manse was settled deep in the wet dregs of the moor, deep in its wooded marshes the manse was set. It's long gravel drive, curving along the pond now still and silent and covered in plants and algae and the thin stride of preying birds, unseen leaps of startled frogs, unused to being disturbed as they splashed into the water. The spreading building sat, obscured by hanging, moss dripping trees that reached up from the water towards the cloud streaked sky.
The air was quiet and warm, singing with the sounds of insects and frogs creatures in the water. It held barely a chill in it. Highlighting the sound of human breath as a stranger approached the estate. Or what she could recognize as the estate, facing the house as she was.
The building was a stonework and slate roof masterpiece of decorative architecture. From the tall, stylized arches that overhung the entrance, to the domed tower at the top of the roof. It had a large conservatory off to the side, and there was some light from it. Dim, but present. And the rest of the house silent, stretching into the darkness.
The drive led to the wide steps up to the covered front of the mansion, and the large, dark wooded doors. Tall windows on either side gave no indication of the interior, shrouded from the inside. And yet there was a suggestion of light peeking from behind one of them. Barely there. A candle, perhaps.
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