There is some violence and gore in this story.
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The crowd roared as they had been doing every night for the past two weeks. Opening night had been a smash and after the reviews they couldn't seem to sell tickets fast enough.
Sandra took her bow giving a smile, but trying to hide the pride welling up inside her. After all, it was a team effort to put on a production of this caliber, but she knew it was her they had come to see. As the curtain flowed down in front of her like a velvet waterfall, she let her pride slip. Now hidden from the crowds, she threw her hands over her head and did a little dance of victory. If she had been able to reach her back in the grand gown that adorned her body, she might have even patted herself.
Back in her dressing room, staring in the mirror, Sandra shot herself a wink.
"You've still got it kid," she said, smiling.
"Sandra, you've got some fans out here that would love your autograph," Brad said leaning into her dressing room.
"Tell them I'll be out in a minute, but I can only do a few, I've got plans tonight...big plans," Sandra said.
Sandra approached her car in the dimly lit parking lot below the theatre. It had been a struggle to tear herself away from the adoring fans, but she loved every minute of it. She checked her watch, nine thirty, she would have to hurry if she was going to make it. She pressed the alarm on her car and it gave its familiar chirp and the locks popped up. Moving to the door she heard a noise behind her and she whirled about. Nothing.
She pulled open the door and slid inside, placing the key in the ignition she looked forward and froze. There placed neatly under her windshield wiper blade was a single business card with four letters on it.
In an instant everything had changed. It was over. She was finished. They had found her...
The shadow moved too quickly for her to react when suddenly the glass of the drivers side window was smashed in. Screaming she felt a strong hand grasp her arm and pull her through the shattered glass and onto the pavement. Sharp shards of the crystalline glass dug into her arms and palms as she struggled to her feet, a black foot shot into her view knocking her to the ground again. Gasping at the pain she crawled backwards from the shadow as it crouched to the ground, her breath caught in her throat as she saw what she had hoped to never see again in her entire life.
The deep gold glowing eyes seared into her soul. With an evil grin the shadow spoke in a quiet sharp voice.
“It has been a long time Sandra.” His voice was mocking, malicious. “Is that what they call you now?” Moving forward the grin disappeared, in its place was a deep scowl of hate. “You should never have left us. The oath that you took long ago, locked you into this life forever.”
Sandra scurried backwards, hearing his voice brought back memories she had thought that she had forgotten. Images of blood, screams of young children dying because they couldn’t take the oath. The image of her brother, only six, lying next to her with a deep gash across his neck, blood oozing from the wound. She frowned.
“They made me take it. I had no choice.” The shadow lunged upon her with a snarl, the smell of incense and blood raked at her senses. His grip was tight and suffocating as she felt him draw a claw across her stomach. His voice was distant but forceful.
“Don’t lie to me I remember what you did, you loved every minute of it all. The blood, the death you loved it. But now, you have chosen to die along with all those that you killed.” The claws found the soft skin below her sternum, scraping across the area. “Now watch as I carve your heart out from your own chest.”
The shadow raised his arm ready to strike when suddenly Sandra twisted jamming her elbow into his jaw, a solid hit that knocked the beast off of her. Gathering her strength she leaped to her feet and with as much power as she could muster she connected again on his jaw with a roundhouse. Stumbling backwards, the shadow fell to the pavement with a loud roar. Taking her chance, Sandra dove into the car, started it and cranked it into reverse. Glass flew around inside the car as she spun it around in a tight turn and felt the front tires run over the shadow still on the ground.
Gunning the engine she popped it into gear and squealed away from the parking lot. Looking back she saw the shadow stand up unfazed by being run over and calm. His smile chilled her to the depths of her soul, she felt the darkness and chaos flow from his being. There was only one man who could stop him, she just hoped she could still find him.
Lee, twisted into the stance of the tiger focusing on the wing-chun dummy ahead of him. With a quick breath he lunged with a stopping fist then smashed his right fist into the face target on the top, dust flew from the overly used wooden dummy and it wobbled in the wake of the blow. Smiling, Lee stepped back into the tiger stance and was about to repeat the move when someone knocked loudly on the door. Grabbing a towel he wiped sweat from his face as he opened the door. He stared in surprise.
“Sandra, what are you doing here?” Her hair was disheveled and she looked as though she had been crying all night. “What’s wrong?”
Sandra collapsed to her knees as she let out a gasping sigh of relief. “I knew you would be here.” Lee looked at her arms and saw the blood dry and caked on her shirt.
“They have found you again?” All she could do was nod. Reaching down Lee picked her up off the floor and carried her into the living room. Concern creased his brow as he examined her cuts, shrugging him off she pushed herself into a seated position.
“I’m fine, just exhausted.” Glancing around, she whispered “He’ll be here soon.” Lee looked up, a stern look upon his face.
“They sent him?” She shivered in a small reply. Standing, Lee looked out of the living room window, speaking. “So we can finally end this here and now!”
“It will never end.” She was shocked at the sound of her voice, it was so tired and worn out. “But at least we can try.” Squinting she tried to stand, but exhaustion won out and she collapsed to the couch again. Lee moved to the wall and pulled a Tai Chi sword from it’s placement.
“I WILL end this here and now, no more running from him. We can worry about the rest later, right now we face our fears.” Standing softly Lee reached out and brushed some of the hair from Sandra’s eyes. “I promised your father that I would protect you always. Even if I hadn’t promised, I still would have.” She leaned her face against his palm smiling, feeling the comfort and peace that he wielded so well.
“I know.” She looked at his deep brown eyes. “I know.”
Lee looked about to speak when the living room window exploded inwards, scattering glass across the entire room. Grabbing Sandra he leaped to the other side, protecting her from the spraying glass. Setting her down he spun, the gleaming Tai Chi sword ringing in his hands as he drew it from his sheath in one swift motion.
There he was, the beast that he had seen so long ago, every bit as evil and menacing as before. The evil and twisted form of Chung, a once young and strong man, who in his greed for power and control was used by the secret society called M.A.R.S. A society that brainwashed and developed young children to become killers, assassins. But they did an experiment on some of the children, genetically altering them to make them stronger, more powerful. Chung was one such man.
The beast was crouched low to the ground, a long spear held in one of his dark fists. With a smooth leap, Chung arced through the air at Lee. Twisting, Lee kicked out his legs giving him momentum enough to flip sideways, away from the spear. Landing in a low crane stance Lee lunged out, thrusting the straight Tai Chi sword towards the shadow.
The sword never found its mark, and as he stumbled foreword he felt a hard object smashed into the back of hi head, sending him sprawling to the floor. Flipping to his feet, Lee spun and lashed out with a vicious spin kick. He felt his heel connect with Chung’s Jaw, the loud crack echoed in the small living room. With a roar, Chung leaped at the small Chinese man, his claws tearing across Lee’s chest, spraying blood along the rooms walls.
“No!!” Cried Sandra as she watched the wound widen with every strike from the dark beast.
Gasping in shock, Lee stumbled backwards towards Sandra, struggling to her feet she caught him as he fell.
He tried to breathe as the blood drained from him. It had all happened so quickly, he thought that he would have been able to last longer, but this was it. Trying to speak he looked into her eyes and with a final shudder he relaxed in her arms.
Quivering in anger Sandra gasped the handle from the stiff fingers of her dead hero and stood. The beast, angered by her challenge and lack of fear tore a gash across her throat, deep and long. Her eyes bulged open as she collapsed from the shock. He crouched above her, raising his claws above her chest.
“Now I will take your heart.” His claws started to descend, she closed her eyes, she felt the long claws tear into her chest, grasping her heart. But they froze even as she died. Looking one last time she saw the dark beast collapse backwards, his long spear sticking out from the back of his head and protruding out of his left eye socket. Behind him, Lee fell backwards his strength finally gone. The beast twitching in death was the last thing she saw, until peace took over and she closed her eyes.
Dreams that disturbe you when you sleep,
and haunt you when you are awake.
Make up a mirror of who and what you are,