7: Jack

So she thought I was making this up? The girl was dumber than I thought. She’d soon see once she went outside though. The town would be in absolute chaos by now, kids crying, probably a few people praying too.

 I looked into the box and made a face at the can, which had worked its way free of the jumper and was now sitting on top.

“You’re going down,” I told it, “We’ve been ready for this for years. You’re going for good this time. We’re going to kill you, not just contain you.”

I flipped the jumper over so it was underneath it. It would jump again if it got the opportunity and I couldn’t have it hit me; that meant certain death.

 The girl was worrying me though, stupid though she was, she would make a good vessel for the Darkness that was presently contained in the can. Weak, obviously, if the amount of complaining was anything to go by. Easily scared, if the can jumping was enough to make her follow me around for a few minutes. New to the place and therefore pretty much ignorant to what that thing could do. She should be too old to be so easily influenced but her aura must not be aging at the right rate. That does happen sometimes, although it is rare, a result of a strange upbringing.

 The Darkness prefers children for vessels if it wants to escape. They’re easier to shape and bend to its will. Anyone under the age of ten is in the high-risk category. The canteen of a secondary school should be a safe enough place for containment. But if someone with an under-developed aura is wandering around the place…

 We’re all born with an aura, an indescribable thing, something like a soul. It contains your entire consciousness, personality, thoughts, opinions, memories, growing constantly as you get older. The Darkness feeds on it, changes it so you barely recognise those you are closest to, let alone trust them. Once it has a hold of your aura, you’re just a puppet for it to do what it wants with. Adult auras are more complex, more difficult for it, the product of years of memories and such a large number of opinions that it regularly contradicts itself. It prefers the smaller, simpler ones of children. Or of strange teenagers, if you want to be picky about it.

 The last time the Darkness got hold of someone was before I was born. Long before. My parents would only have been toddlers. Only fifty died, a relatively small number compared to other incidents in other places. My grandfather was the one who eventually contained it. He trained me in the methods from I was barely able to walk. Never told me the actually procedure for containment though. That’s one reason I need to talk to him. The other is that I don’t really trust myself to deal with this alone. He has proper experience, after all. Can’t beat that.

The End

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