The Darklight

Sylvia Morrow wakes up one morning to discover that she is living with strange people calling themselves the Darklight. They claim that each of them possesses strange, unique powers. Sylvia can't imagine why they want her, especially since she's so normal. But as the Darklight start being hunted by a dangerous enemy determined to destroy them all, Sylvia must discover that she is a true Darklight and protect herself and her new friends...or die trying. --You may submit your own character--

Chapter 1

The Village

My eyes opened blearily as I heard a bird chirping overhead. Slowly I raised myself, realizing I was no longer in my room at Charleston's local orphanage.

"Hello?" I called, unsure. Why was it so empty around here? And why was I in the middle of the forest?

"She's awake. Ben, you're the one who found her. Go explain."

"Jack, be gentle. The poor thing is probably terrified."

"Quiet, Martha. She can hear us."

I whipped my head in the direction of the voices, but saw no one. "Who's there?" I called uncertainly. "Who are you? Where am I?"

A boy emerged alone from the dense foliage. He had black, mussed hair and dangerous dark eyes. His eyes swept over me carefully. Slowly he knelt until he was sitting on the ground beside me.

"I am Benjamin. You are now in the camp of the Darklight."

I stared at the boy. He was around my age, seventeen, and hauntingly handsome. I felt I would never forget the well-chiseled outline of his face, or how intensely he watched me.

"I'm Sylvia Morrow." It was all I could manage.

"I know." I fancied he was a bit impatient.

"What is the Darklight?" I asked, watching for his reaction. Instead of answering, he rose and offered his hand to me. I took it and he lifted me off the ground. His hand was cold.

"Come." he said, turning and walking off toward the trees. I quickly followed.

We walked for a few minutes until we emerged into a clearing. Standing around talking were more people, about a hundred. Small, well-built huts lined up and down the small town. There was a giant fire pit in the center of the town. We walked through, me being wary of everyone around me.

At the head of the tiny town there was a rather large hut. Ben beckoned for me to follow him through. So I did, although a bit reluctantly.

"Jack? I brought her here. She is a Darklight, I know it. Can't you sense the power from her?" Ben called into the hut. I stood awkwardly, unsure of what to say.

A tall, built man walked from a different room into this one. He nodded at Ben and eyed me. He radiated power and authority.

"I am Jack." His voice was loud and commanding. "I am the leader of the Darklight. We mean you no harm, Sylvia Morrow. Welcome. Please sit."

I'd given up on being surprised or scared anymore, so I sat across from Jack.

"Well, please tell me a bit about yourself." Jack looked at me, a bit curiously.

"I'm Sylvia, but I guess you knew that," I started hesitantly. I noticed Ben leaning against a door-frame nearby and felt better. "My parents died in a plane crash when I was five. I was taken to the local orphanage in my hometown, Charleston. I've lived there ever since. I have no other living family. I am taught at the orphanage and rarely leave. I'm seventeen and I'll be a senior this fall. That's...pretty much it."

Jack leaned back and studied me. "Has anything unusual ever happened to you before, Sylvia?"

I shivered. Countless weird memories circled in my head, but for some reason I hesitated. "No, sir."

"Hmm." He looked thoughtful.

"Please, sir, er--Jack. What is the Darklight? Why am I here?" I pleaded.

Jack studied me. "I--"

"Jack. You need to explain to this poor girl." A portly woman with a motherly, likable face bustled inside. She smiled at me and set a plate of food before me. I slowly began to eat, realizing how hungry I was.

"Sylvia, this is my wife, Martha." Jack told me. He turned to Martha. "It is too soon. She must adapt first. It's--"

"No." Martha was quiet but firm. "She needs to know. She doesn't have a clue what's happening or who she really is, Jack. You need to tell her."

Jack sighed and turned back to me. "Very well."

He glanced at Ben and Martha. Both nodded and left the room.

Jack leaned forward. "You are in the secret, magic home of a group of people called the Darklight. We are superhuman people who have extraordinary abilities. We have powers, I guess you could say. We are different from others. We search and find other people like us. This is difficult because there are a very few in the world."

"I am a Darklight?" I whispered.

"Yes. One of the village boys--Ben--found you while he was visiting Charleston. He immediately recognized your power and told us, We took you in the nighttime and brought you here. For you see, this is the only place you will be safe and develop your powers."

"Safe? Why would I need to be protected?" I whispered hoarsely.

"The Darklight have an ancient enemy. They call themselves the Hunters. They are a family lineage from a man who lived thousands of years ago. His name was Derrick Hunt. He discovered the Darklight during his lifetime. He was convinced we were witches who must die. His family--his descendants--have never stopped hunting for us. They won't until we all are dead."

"Who are these--Hunters?" I asked fearfully.

"They are everywhere, all over the world. All are related somehow. There was one searching in Charleston. That is why we took you so quickly." Jack sighed.

"I see," I managed.

"I have incredible strength," Jack continued. "I am also indestructible. That is my ability. Martha can read minds."

"What about Ben?" I asked.

"He is special. He has the ability to control darkness. He can make it flow from one place to the other. He can make it haunt someone's mind until they go mad. He can bend it into weapons or shields." Jack told me.

"Wow," I whispered.

"There is a legend," Jack said, "of a special member of the Darklight who will have the opposite ability. They will have the ability to control light. And this person will save us all from a terrible fate someday. But the person who controls darkness will find the person who controls light. That is why we are called the Darklight."

"Wow," I whispered. "That's amazing." Then it dawned on me. "Ben found me. That's why you got me so fast."

"You are the first person Ben has found," Jack admitted. "So we had to be careful. You could be the person of legend. But then again, Ben may find others. So perhaps not."

"I can't be a Darklight, much less save them," I stuttered. "I'm just a normal girl!"

"No. You radiate power that only a Darklight can," Jack said confidently. "I can feel it myself. Now why don't you run along with Ben. He'll show you where your hut is. We're having a town campfire tonight in the middle of the square. You should go. Now run along."

I left the hut, finding Ben waiting outside. We walked in silence for a while.

"So I heard about your powers," I said tentatively.

"Yeah." He spoke shortly. We lapsed into silence.

"Ben! Hey, Ben!" Three teens our age waved us over. Ben beckoned to me and I followed him.

"Hi! Are you the new Darklight? I'm Emily, Ben's twin sister," a dark-haired girl told me with a bubbly, happy demeanor. She had the same dark hair and eyes. "My ability is to turn invisible." She beamed.

"Hello there, cutie," a boy beside Emily said. He had glossy blonde hair and light, blue, playful eyes. "How're you? I'm Andrew. I can fly." He took my hand and kissed it. He looked at me and grinned. "So do you like the village?"

"Yeah, it's nice," I told him, smiling. These two were much friendlier than Ben, who just stood silently, glaring slightly at Andrew.

"Hey, Benny," a girl with gold hair cooed. She latched onto him. "I love you, Benny. Wanna sit with me at the campfire tonight?"

"No. Get off." Ben shook the girl off. She huffed. She then turned and looked me over critically. I fidgeted. I had long, wavy brown hair and blue-green eyes. I was thin and tall. Surely I passed whatever test this whiny girl was giving me. She glared at me and poked me. "You stay away from my Benny, new girl,"she hissed, stomping off.

Emily laughed. "That was Sally. She's in love with Ben and gets jealous easily. She can make people fall for each other."

My eyebrows lifted, "Then why doesn't she use it?"

"Darklights can't use their powers on other Darklights. It doesn't work for some reason." Emily shrugged. "No one knows why."

"Well, I'm Sylvia," I told them. "Nice to meet you."

"What's your power?" Andrew asked.

"I don't know," I mumbled.

"That's okay. You'll find it. Now want me to walk you home?" Andrew winked.

"No. I'm taking her to her hut." Ben spoke shortly. He nudged my arm and jerked his head. "Come on."

"Um, see you," I told Emily and Andrew, hurrying to follow Ben.

He took me to a hut near the middle of the village. "Here. You can get any food you want at the market. I'm sure you'll manage."

"Uh, thanks. I guess I'll see you at the campfire tonight?" I ventured.

"Yeah. I'll come get you at seven."

"Oh. Okay."

We stood there for a moment.

"See you, I guess," I said.

"See you." He studied me for a long moment. He seemed to be about to say something else, then changed his mind. "Goodbye."

I watched him walk away with a warm feeling inside. I had a feeling I was going to like living with the Darklight...Hunters or not.

But one thing was for certain.

I was going to have to be careful.

Very, very careful.

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