The official sequel to site award-winning fanfiction The Jackson Legacy. A collection of three short stories centering around characters Christopher Jackson and a boy named Henry. Visit index page for more information regarding the story. Leave your comments in the talk page.
Repeated Words - Amanda Rainwater, a renowned wealthy woman living in Seattle, does not know her past, or at least, she can't remember it. She has always questioned about it, until she meets a man, Christopher Jackson, and joins him to a short adventure around the states where she discovers secrets about the world. And about her self.
The First Promise - Henry's mother is about to pass away, and his father is struggling to keep her well. It doesn't help that more problems have been stacking like piles of books in front of their home. But despite the family hardships, there are moments where each and everyone of them finds happiness for one another. A short bittersweet story about a family.
From One Boy To Another - After hearing that a son of a beloved friend comes to visit, a group of long-time friends decide to meet up and, together, bring to the son the stories, mementos, and remaining memories of his father's former life.
Part One - The Party
Amanda wasn’t completely contented with what she had.
She hardly remembered her past, but that might be because so many things had happened to her for the last ten years and how everything felt like all of this just came out of nowhere. She would wake up every morning to remember that she was a woman who had everything on her hands; caring friends, a loving and understanding fiancé, luxury and respect.
But what was missing?
Sure, money definitely doesn’t satisfy anyone. She traveled around with her friends, learned new things, and experienced the world around her. The wealth and power she had from the start just came out of nowhere; she never really asked for it.
All she wanted was answers.
Answers … to what question?
The lack of satisfaction was the part she wouldn't tell to anyone, not even her fiancé. There was no one who she could confide her feelings to. She dwelled around the thought about her forgotten past, her origins, her whole life and mysteries on how it came to be. But the more she thought on it, the more stressed she became. Just thinking her childhood, it would make her dizzy. Think about her parents, whoever they were, she would fall ill.
Her friends had notice this, so they were able to convince her to come with them to a party, where a big art auction was also being held. They knew better than to tell her to get some rest, when she wanted to do something. Amanda loved collecting pieces of art. It was also a chance for her to take a break from all the work and stress.
She dressed up formally with her friends and went to the party. Originally, Amanda had no intention of meeting anyone new, or at least anyone her friends would introduce to her. It was quite common for them to have connections and join circles. She would be a friend who was also a friend of this guy, who was also a friend of that guy, by which chance Amanda also knew. The chain could go on. But she wanted to meet people of her own accord. One where there are two people, striving to start their own topics to get to know each other, no third person to introduce one to another and leave them both in awkward silence.
She broke away from her group and dwelled on the pieces displayed. Her fiancé, Stephen, and his parents had arranged the whole event, which surprised Amanda, later learning that it was also Stephen’s idea of setting up the idea of the auction sale, with paintings to be the featured items. She would have to see him later.
The guests were all gathered in the hall, with dining tables lined up in the middle, a brass band playing on a stage. Most of the guests were not seated, though, since they prefer to dwell around the pieces of art and canvases surrounding them, which were lined on the walls. There was another hall next door, a much smaller one, which was used as the auction room. All transactions were done there.
With a glass of champagne in hand, Amanda moved towards a dark piece displayed along the line of canvases on one side of a wall. It was a painting of an old dark fortress in the night, with many trees surrounding it. The piece gave a dark and eerie atmosphere, and yet it gave off the feeling full of mysteries, like the smile of the Mona Lisa.
“This is the current item with the highest price tag.” A man around his mid-twenties came besides her, looking at the painting. “It’s now worth over eighty thousand dollars, and there are, more or less, a hundred bidders trying to get that painting.”
“Really?” said Amanda, curious. “That much?”
The man shrugged. “Dream Fort, as the artist calls this piece. Silly title. It’s based off a real fortress located up in Canada. Rumor says that if you go there, you will find out the deepest secrets and mysteries of those who are closest to you.”
“I went there once for a short trip. Decided to see if the rumors are really true or so.”
“And?” Amanda looked away from the painting and glanced towards the man. He was tall and handsome, with sandy blond hair and bright blue eyes. His expression and composure were relaxed, confident.
He thought for a moment. And then shrugged. “I had an interesting experience with the fortress. It was still a great trip. Oh, by the way,” he stretched out his hand to her. “Christopher Jackson.”
“Amanda Rainwater.” She took the hand and shook it. “It is very nice to meet you, Mr. Jackson. You seem to know a lot of things.”
He shrugged again. “Not really, but thank you anyway.”
“So what brings you here?”
“Oh, my friend, who’s also Stephen’s friend, invited me here. I’ve got a piece that I want to get rid off and he told me about the big auction event here.”
“Mind if I see that piece?” Amanda asked.
Mr. Jackson lead her to a painting that was located a few canvases away from Dream Fort. In the picture was an old ruin, with an altar at the far middle. The medium was watercolor, and the colors were soft and bright.
“I didn’t do my best on it,” Mr. Jackson admitted. “So it’s not that great. I don’t think anyone would try to get this. They’ll probably get this cheap.”
“It looks amazing.” Amanda was serious. “Do you have any other works, Mr. Jackson?”
“Ah, no, this is my only one. Painting is not my forte, I realized, and I don’t have much time when I’m traveling. This took me two years to do, when it could be done a day. A kid can do better than this.”
The way Mr. Jackson spoke in a casual tone surprised her. She had gotten used to many people speaking to her formally.
“Did you base it from anywhere?” She continued. “This place looks beautiful.”
He thought for a moment. “Nah, it came from my head.”
“You must have quite an imagination, and I meant that as a compliment.” Amanda laughed. She paused. “Is this piece sold?”
“No, not yet. It’ll come up after Dream Fort is sold. They’re still not yet done with the transaction. The auction room’s like a battlefield.”
“Then, I might have to fight for your piece, as well.” “Oh?”
“I don’t know, Mr. Jackson. Just one look at the painting and I’ve already grown fond of it. It’s really beautiful.”
He smiled to her. “I’m glad you like it, Ms. Rainwater.”
“Does the piece have a name?”
“Funnily enough, no. I can’t seem to find the right name for it. It’s an untitled piece, nameless. I didn’t sign my name there, too.”
“Why didn’t you?”
“I like to be anonymous,” he said, “just like the painting. I always wanted to be a mystery to a person’s life. A part of their lives in a way. In a way, I would be like a ghost.” He laughed.
Someone came over the two. “Hey, Christopher!” he said.
Mr. Jackson almost jumped and looked at the direction of the shouter. “Leon,” he smiled rather tiredly.
The man came besides Mr. Jackson and gave him a big pat on the back. “Heard you’re in the country so I decided to invite you here. Long time no see!”
“Same. Oh,” Mr. Jackson gestured to Amanda. “Ms. Rainwater, this is my friend, Leon Hamilton.”
For a moment, Amanda could have sworn Mr. Hamilton had a flicker of recognition when he first looked at her face. It was quickly replaced by a friendly smile. “Ah, Amanda Rainwater?” He took her hand and shook it. “Then you must be Stephen’s fiancée. I’ve heard a lot about you from him, though I haven’t actually met you in person. When do you think is the wedding?”
“We haven’t actually planned for it yet, but soon.” Amanda said.
“That’s great. I hope Stephen doesn’t forget to invite me to your wedding,” he laughed. It seemed a bit pained. Then he turned back to Mr. Jackson. “So what brings you here in the states? I heard you brought a kid.”
“Yeah, I just came to bring Henry with me. I was thinking of dropping him to his dad’s friend’s care. Not that I find it hard to keep a look out for the kid. It’s just that I’m not the parenting type.”
“W-what happened to his parents?”
“Henry’s dad just passed away a week ago.”
“Oh.” Mr. Hamilton’s smile faded. “I-I’m sorry to hear that.”
“No worries. I heard you’re getting married, too.” Mr. Jackson quickly changed the subject. “Claire, I heard?”
“Aha, y-yeah.” Mr. Hamilton placed a hand behind his neck, laughing sheepishly. “In a couple of weeks or so. You really can’t go the wedding?”
“Yeah, I’ll just be here in a few days.”
“Shucks. We can move the date, though.”
“Nah, no need. Don’t rush for me. Advance best wishes, anyway.”
“Oh, I got to go.” Mr. Hamilton glanced at his watch. “Sadly, I’m the one who can’t stay long in the party. See you around, Christopher. And very nice meeting you, Amanda.”
“Same to you, too, Mr. Hamilton,” Amanda said.
And with that, Mr. Hamilton moved back to the crowd, constantly glancing at his watch and Amanda at the same time.
“You’ve brought a kid with you?” she asked.
“Yeah,” Mr. Jackson said, looking around. “There he is.”
A little boy, nine-years-old at least, emerged from the crowd and ran towards Mr. Jackson. He was dressed formally like the latter, but his hair was curly, almost untamed.
“Chris!” he called. “There’s someone who’s looking for you.” There was a trace of Australian accent in the way he spoke. Then he saw Amanda standing near Mr. Jackson. “Oh, umm, hi ma’am.”
“Hello there,” she greeted with a smile. The boy smiled a wide smile, revealing that one of his front teeth missing.
“Right. Henry, this is Amanda Rainwater. Ms. Rainwater, my godson, Henry.”
“Nice to meet you, ma’am.” The boy shook her hand.
“So, who’s looking for me, Henry?” Mr. Jackson asked.
“Mr. Davidson. He wanted to talk to you about your meeting with Mr. Carter Kane two months ago and your newest essay on Egyptian Myths.”
“Ah, I see,” Mr. Jackson grumbled, slightly annoyed. “Tell Mr. Davidson that I’ll meet him outside. In the meantime, Henry, get our bags from the table.”
“Yeah, okay. Excuse me, ma’am.” The boy nodded to Amanda and moved away.
“Are you leaving, Mr. Jackson?” Amanda said, surprised.
“Yeah, I’ve just realized that we couldn’t stay for long because we’re in a rush for another meeting.” He didn’t sound completely honest. “Sorry. We’ve also just arrived in the country today and we haven’t found a place to stay, so there are a lot of things to do before settling down.”
There was silence between the two before Mr. Jackson cleared his throat. “Well, if you’re able to win this piece in the auction room,” he gestured at his painting, “then it might be delivered tomorrow to your house.”
“It’s very nice meeting you, Ms. Rainwater.”
Henry came back with two bags slung in each shoulder. Mr. Jackson took one of the larger bags.
“Have a good evening, Ms. Rainwater.” Mr. Jackson nodded, Henry followed his example. He started to walk, ushering Henry to the crowd again. Henry looked reluctant to leave, glancing at Amanda one more time, the same way Mr. Hamilton did, but followed him anyway. Mr. Jackson looked back behind to Amanda for a moment. Amanda, without thinking, waved reassuringly at him. He smiled again and nodded. Then he and the boy disappeared.
She watched him and then sighed. She finished her champagne, look at the painting once more and moved to the crowd. It took her a moment to notice that her four friends were watching her in a distance, smiling mischievously.
“Already planning to switch fiancés, eh, Mandy?” one teased when Amanda came to them.
She shook her head playfully. “What are you talking about?”
“He’s actually pretty cute,” another one said. “You know, the man who just talked to you with a boy? Is he married?”
“No,” Amanda said. She felt a little bit awkward talking about Mr. Jackson. “That’s his godson.”
“Oh. Then he’s single?” Her three friends almost squealed.
Amanda sighed. Her friends, as caring and watchful as they are to her, like they were all family, she sometimes wished that they would try to stop acting like kids.
“Oh, I’ve seen his type,” one of her friends, Elly, said coolly, with a trace of disappointment in her voice. “A bachelor type. You know the ones who look pretty and all to the ladies and then they’ll suddenly turn you down when you make a move. Such a waste.”
Her three other friends moaned in disappointment.
“But I think he’s kind of interested in you.” Elly added, looking at Amanda’s direction, sounding like it wasn’t a big deal.
Amanda laughed. “What do you mean?”
“I mean, I noticed this guy kept smiling to you, and he wouldn’t look away,” Elly said. “N-not like a creep, but more of an admiring way? Yeah, like that.”
She noticed that, too. “I’m sure he knows I’m engaged,” Amanda said. But his presence, for some reason, felt like Stephen’s, so it was rather kindly, instead of awkward, and for some reason, she felt nostalgic.
A familiar feeling.
For a fleeting, hopeful moment she thought she could possibly know Mr. Jackson in the past, or the thought of him would trigger something in her memory.
But instead, her head suddenly felt heavy, and she swayed for a moment.
“Hey, hey, take it easy there, Mandy.” Her friend, Isa, caught her. “You okay?”
“Yeah,” Amanda managed.
“But you’re burning.” Isa placed a hand on Amanda’s forehead. “Yep, you are. Let’s bring you home. I’m sure Stephen dear won’t mind. Besides, he’ll do the same as well.”
Amanda couldn’t find words to protest. She did feel ill, and they were right; she needed some rest.
“Alright. I’m going home,” she finally said. “But can you give me some time?”
Isa lets her go and passed her a worried look. Amanda smiled and waddled away from the group, heading straight to the auction room. She was opening the door when the painting of Dream Fort was finally sold for an amount of ninety-six thousand dollars.