Ring of the Past - Chapter 1

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Ring of the Past

by dark-vampire111

Libraries: Action, Drama, Fantasy, Humor, Original Fiction, Romance

Published on / 1 Chapter(s) / 0 Review(s)

Updated on

Alice Cullen is given a ring that has passed down her family line for hundreds of years. All seems normal until she places the ring on her finger to discover in horror that the ring is a little more than a decoration. Alice now has to deal with the Spirit of a boy that was trapped in the ring long ago. She must figure out if he was trapped in it for the reasons he says or not. How much can she trust this Spirit? (cover art soon)

         Alice Cullen pushed the door open, listening to it protest all the way.  She needed to go buy some oil for it since the owner of this place never would, but she did not have the money to do it right now.  She would have to endure the noise and having the entire building knowing when she came in and out.  Long locks of auburn hair swirled into her face as the wind accosted her before she slammed the door shut.  Tossing the mail onto the table as she passed, two bills and an advertisement, she continued to her bedroom.  Nothing interesting in the mail to read, as always.  Yesterdays mail was the first interesting bit in a while.  It was odd how long that lawyer had taken to get to her – Not that it mattered very much now, she already lost the old house and was living in a cramped, rundown apartment building.  If she had the money she would at least get a nicer place, but she did not have the money. 
    The pitiful job she had paid precious little, especially since she could only work part time, so there was practically no extra.  On the rare occasions she had a little extra she stashed it in a box she wedged behind the headboard of the bed.  She saved every chance she got, even when she should not have, she had to.  As a result most of her cloths were a bit threadbare and faded.  The only reason she had furniture was because she kept a lot of things from the old house.  She would not have been able to have furniture otherwise.  Still, she kept herself, cloths, and house clean.  The house was a little cluttered since she had a hard time letting go of things from the old home, but she was planning to sell a few more things, so it would be fine. 
    She dropped onto her bed, letting it jostle her in protest to the force she sat down with.  What a day: going to school, to work, then to the lawyers office.  The letter only came yesterday but the appointment was for today.  It was fortunate she got the letter when she did or she would have missed the appointment.  She reached into her bag and drew out the paper sack then dumped the contents onto the bed. Two small rolls of cash and an old box with a strange looking ring in it.  That was all the lawyer had gotten, at least for now, but he promised there would be more eventually.  She eased down all the way, nestling into the comfort of being off her feet.  What was it with lawyers, probate, and all those other things they babbled about.  It seemed like it should all have been simple.  Her parents money, possessions, bonds, stocks, and whatever else they had was hers now that they were gone.  Why was it so hard to get?  It was crazy.
    Alice fingered the money.  It was a lot, actually, but not enough.  There was a lot more she needed.  She sighed and pulled a pillow under her head.  The pay from today would be cut in half because she had to leave early because of the lawyer.  This weeks check would be lower, and like she could afford that.  She scooped up the money, rolled off the bed and put the cash in the box.  Her elbows rested on the bed as she picked up the box.  She could sell the ring but she knew she would never do that.
    Her stomach growled and she moaned with it.  She was so hungry today, she wanted a real meal.  A whole turkey with stuffing and a big dish of salad would be nice.  She was getting thinner by the day as it was. She closed her eyes and shook her head.  No, she needed to stop that.  Tossing the ring box onto her dresser she went to the kitchen.  She slid onto the floor and chased away the last thoughts to turkey as she opened the cupboard door.  She pulled out the box of saltine crackers she had been nursing the past few days.
    “Just two!”  She instructed herself sternly, “Well, maybe. . . four.”  She already wavered, swayed by hunger.  She ate the crackers slowly, taking small bites.  She opened the fridge and took out the open can of tuna, only using just a little to put on the crackers.  Food had to last as long as possible, she had to draw out every bit of it.  Since she allowed herself four crackers today she could only have two tomorrow, for sure.  All the food she had was things like this, cheap things.  There was not enough money to be used much on food.  A few weeks ago they had a big bargain on soup, but she ate it all too fast.  Last week she had a lot of Ramen noodles, but those were gone.  She had not purchased any food this week. All she had left were the crackers and a few cans of tuna, but she would make herself save to tuna more.  She had a small fridge but it was empty.
    Her stomach growled again as she went back to her room, it was not satisfied.  Maybe a little later she would break down and take a few more crackers, but not right now.  If she told herself she would do it later she could normally put herself off until she went to sleep.  Tomorrow was her day off so she planned to sleep all day.  She asked to work tomorrow to work off the time she missed today but they denied her request.
    Alice sighed.  Skipping one day of school was not that bad.  She would say she was sick.  Anyway, she was sick, sick of a lot of things.  Really sick of the way life worked, but more sick of people.  People could be so low, so cruel.  People at school who harassed her every day, people at work who hassled her, people who treated her poorly, and people like her parents who left her alone.  Her throat tightened.  She should not think that way but it was hard not to.  Why did they leave her alone?  Especially father!  He did not have to leave her.  She did not blame her mother so much, it was understandable how she left.  Cancer was a cruel equalized the preyed on everyone the same.  Money, fame, wealth, poor, none of that mattered.  She understood mother's leaving, but not her father's.  Her father did not have to leave her the way he did.  He never once considered her, how she would do, or how she felt.  All he cared or thought about was that mother left.  He was a coward and nothing more, not even brave enough to get out of bed every morning.
    She still loved them both though, very much.  If only they could come back!  Now all she had of them were the things in this house.  Now today, the money and the ring.  Apparently the ring was really special too.  The lawyer read off a huge thing about it, instructions on it.  Things like: never sell it, pass it to your child as it has been passed for hundreds of years, treat it like a symbol of family status, a bunch of things.  She did not know what all of that was about but her parents wanted her to understand it.  The truth was though, she had not listened that well while he read her all those things.
    The box stared at her from a cockeyed angle on the dresser.  She decided to take another look at it.  It looked unusual the first time she looked at it.  The band was silver with designs etched into it.  It seemed ornate, even a little gaudy.  The stone had seemed strange as well, red with darker red specs inside it.  Could it have been a ruby of some kind?  She undid the metal clasp and opened the wooden box.  The ring sat inside waiting for her so she picked it up.  She held it into the sunlight.  The stone glistened and glittered and the silver shined like it was just polished.  The band was etched with some kind of Celtic dragon, Celtic knot, maybe Florentine design. It was a halo style ring, a little like a cocktail ring but it could be worn by a man or woman, transitional, unisex. Rather than silver it might have been tungsten. She did not notice before but there were four small green gems around the red one.    It was stunning now that she really looked at it.  It must have been crafted with a great deal of care.
She slipped in onto her finger to see how it looked on.  The moment she slipped it on she felt a tiny shock wave, not painful, just unusual.  Her eyes moved to a few of the plugings, curious if there had been a power surge but she saw nothing odd. She adjusted the ring on her finger, it was a bit too big.  Her heart beat quivered radically in her chest as she eyed it.  What the. . .
      Suddenly, she felt a presence in the room, like something drifted in.  Ghost! That was her first thought, irrational as it was. Alice whirled to look at the door but stopped, eyes drawn instead to the corner next to her bed.  She blinked, eyes unavoidably drawn to the long, brilliant red hair.  Her eyes darted over the figure of the man who had inexplicably appeared in her room.  The fight or flight reaction threatened to kick in and she coiled her fingers around the lip of the dresser to keep herself from racing out of the room.  It was all she could do to keep from screaming at first, but as her eyes took in the full picture, she had to be careful not to let her mouth hang open.  The first words that came into her mind were things like: beautiful, stunning, exquisite, and amazing.  A red haired angel, or maybe with that color hair, a demon instead.  If he was a demon, with that creamy skin, gentle features, and silky hair, she would need to revise her ideas about them.
   His lips parted and curved into a smirk that instantly sent cold chills up her spine.  A set of dark emerald eyes scanned her up and down, orbs sparkling with mischievous intent, and was it malice?  She hopped not, but apprehension was already hitting her like ice water.  Okay, never mind, her ideas about demons were correct.  That was no angel, it was a demon.  Smooth, gentle, alluring appearance, all to lure an unsuspecting victim into false security - She should have suspected it instantly.  Alice pressed back against her dresser too afraid to make a run for the door.  Even if she got out that door, who was to say she could make it outside, and then what?  No one would be around at this time of day.
  He locked eyes with her as he took a soundless step forward, then another, and another.  If only this room were a bit larger, if only she had a room like her parents big room.  He was already getting so close, though there was not far to go in this room.  Panic hit her but she could not look away from his eyes - They swallowed her and held her in place.  As he drifted closer she caught the faint sent of flowers and fresh air, something similar to a meadow after rain.  There was also a metallic sent lingering around him.  What might he do to her?  Too bad she did not have any garlic, or did that only work for vampires?  Maybe a silver cross would be handy about now.
   With a cock of his eyebrow his smirk deepened.  "Hello, my lady," He purred, the thick accent, rugged but smooth, while still rolling easily off the tongue.
  That accent, she knew it - What was it?  It was a very nice voice, clear, calming baritone voice making his words roll of the tip of his tongue like honey.  She edged off the dresser and plastered herself against the wall, it gave her a little more space between them.  "Who are you?  What do you want?  How did you get in here?"
   He frowned in a sincerity she could tell was forced.  "Want?  Why nothing more than to serve you in any way I can."
   "What?  What nonsense are you trying to sell?"  She hissed, desperate to sound intimidating.
   "No nonsense, my lady."  He closed the gap between them and leaned in so close she could see the blue flecks in his eyes.  "Alice."
   She closed her eyes and lunged forward, arms extended to shove him away, but as her body flew forward she connected with nothing.  Alice staggered forward trying to stay on her feet but only managed to stay upright long enough to fall onto her bed face first.  Not trusting him not to stab her in the back while she was down, she moved fast, sitting up quickly and turned to face him.  She screamed and fell back again as her face nearly collided with his.  He really was quick. 
   His eyes twinkled with amusement as he leaned over even farther, a breath away from her.  "Sorry I did not catch you, but-"  He reached for her arm and she stared it terror as his fingers went through her, "I couldn't, you see."
   She screamed and lashed at him wildly with her hands and kicking with her feet but nothing made contact - That reality only made her scream a few more times out of fear as well as frustration.  How did one get a guy away when you could not touch him?  The old springs of the bed creaked as she scooted away from him, toward the wall.  Alice grabbed her pillow and swung it at him, but that went through him too.  "What are you?"  She shrieked.
   "Please stop screaming!  There is no reason for you to be so upset."
   "W-w-w-wha?  H-how. . . What?"  She stammered, mind working hard to process the current situation rationally.
   "Oh, and to answer your question, my name is Conchobhar Chulainn,"  He grinned, "In your translation, Connor Chulainn."
   Alice stared at him, so stunned she was frozen in place.
   "Your name would be AilÍs, I believe, if you were back in my time."
   "How do you even know my name?"  She demanded, stubborn streak finally kicking its way into her mind.
   "I know because I am here to serve you."
Though his words dripped with edicate and the height of politeness in nature there was something distinctly arrogant an deceptive about him.  He spoke words that paid service to someone over him but the way he looked at her, his expression, and the tone of his voice said something totally different.  He placed a hand gracefully over his heart and bowed.  She backed nearly far enough to fall off the bed head first. Her heart was pounding hard enough to be heard down stairs by now.  Here to serve her, what was that even supposed to mean?
   "You are my master now, in place of your parents."  He cooed.
   Her stomach flip-flopped, mention of her parents causing a visible twitch, "Say what?"
   "You heard what I said."
   "You're crazy, " she paused as rationality began kicking at the intruder of fear, "No, I guess that would be me, not you.  I'm the one who's hearing voices and seeing things that aren't there, you're just the hallucination. "

What was she afraid of? Now that she thought about it, this was not even real.  It had been a long day, too long, it seemed.  Her tired mind was playing tricks on her.  She was having this crazy dilusion because of having practically starved herself this week and working too hard.  Maybe she was lonely too so she conjured this guy up.  He was handsome, so that made sense. Her mind would hardly come up with someone ugly to look at if she wanted someone in her room.  Long days, no food, and lonliness, that's what this was.
   He laughed, genuinely, the first real emotion she had seen him give.  "I promise, I'm real."
   She sat up straight, "You would say that, you believe it.  Your in my head, so you think your real."
   "You're already contradicting yourself, because if I was not real I could not think for myself."  He arched a challenging eyebrow at her.
   She slapped a hand over her eyes, "This is ridiculous!  My imagination is arguing with me.  I heard the saying: 'it's ok to talk to youself, but you need to worry when you start answering yourself.'  Pretty sure this is worse than that, so I really need to worry."
  "No need to worry."  His grin held a wicked hint to it, enjoying her torment, likely.  "I just live in your ring."
  She looked at him lazily, "Oh? 'Just living in your ring.' Just?  Just, you say?"
  He chuckled, "That's right.  I've had many owner pass by since I've been around many centuries."
  It was her turn to cock and eyebrow, looking at him quizzically, "Centuries?"
   "That's right!  I've been passed down all through your family history."
  She smirked, "You look pretty young to be so old!  You don't look any older than me, and I'm just nineteen.  Did you find the fountain of youth or something?"
   "Nothing like that!"  He waved a set of long, slender fingers at her, "My aging has slowed considerably since I've been in here.  I age very, very slowly."
   "Lucky you!"  She mused.
   His eyes darkened with what looked like sadness, "Not really.  Being trapped is hardly worth the exchange."  The phantom shrugged, "But enough of that, what do you want to ask me?"
   "That would be a long list of things. . ."  She rubbed her temples - this was already giving her a headache.  "Okay, you say you've been passed down all this time in my family, right?  So did they all know about you?  Did my parents know about you?"
   "Some knew, some did not.  They all knew enough to know they had to keep the ring in the family, and that it had special qualities."  His gaze lifted to hers, "Actually, you're one of the only people who have ever seen me since I first woke up trapped as an object."  Connor shrugged.
   "Really?" Alice narrowed her eyes a bit.
Connor drifted toward the light from the window and faded slightly.  When put in the light he became ten times more transparent.  While he was in the shadows he was easy to see and he had been staying toward the shadows until now.  Her eyes widened.  What was she thinking, letting herself be sucked into this fiction?  For a moment she forgot he was a figment of her imagination. Alice shook her head wildly, "I mean, no, stop! You're not real! I don't believe any of this!"  She jerked the ring off her finger.
    "Hey, what are you going to do?"  He already sounded alarmed as he swung in closer again.
It was strange but he already seemed more transparent than he had while the ring was on.  Her fingers balled around the ring tightly as she eyed him. He backed away, or rather, drifted away.  Connor seemed worried, too worried to ask a second question.  He gulped and watched her quietly.    Maybe he thought she was going to have the ring melted down or thrown into the ocean. She stared back at him for a minute, unsure what she planned to do, or what she should do.  What would make him go away - other than a lot of psychiatrist meetings and pills, of course - how could she make him vanish?  He was faded now that the ring was off.  Maybe if she let go of it totally she could make him fade all the way. She rushed to the dresser and scooped up the box the ring came in.
    "Hey, wait, Alice! Don't lock me up!  I'll be quiet if you want, really!  I hate being shut in places!"
    "No, I'm getting rid of you!  You're not real!"  She slipped the ring into the box, shut the lid, and shoved it to the back of her top drawer.  Slowly, she turned around and looked over the room.  He was gone!  She did it!  Alice looked back at the dresser.  She could not believe it really worked!  A relived chuckle rose from her throat. That actually worked.  He was gone again.  Maybe she had avoided being crazy just now.

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