Chapter 21: Robed Stranger
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"What the hell does that mean?!" Jackson asked, his face turning a deep shade of scarlet as he looked between Cecilia and Eric in confusion; Cecilia simply smiled back, although he knew she probably had no idea what they were talking about her smile only caused him to blush more as he glared daggers at Eric.

Eric rolled his eyes, "She wants to form a hunting party with you! What else did you think I meant?" He asked with a sly grin as he tried to stifle a chuckle looking at Jacksons' embarrassment. Jackson had to resist the sudden urge to wipe that look off of his face with a well placed punch but only because it was more likely for him to hurt himself instead.

"Oh..." He said, biting his lip and trying to calm himself down, 'He's right, what the hell were you thinking.' He said to himself as he sneaked a glance at Cecilia. "Disappointed about something?" Eric asked teasingly.

"Just.. okay?" Jackson said with a sigh, Eric promptly shut his mouth but the teasing expression on his face remained as he sat sipping his beer in silence for the remainder of their time eating together. 

...

"So how was it?" Eric asked after Jackson had finished demolishing his final dish. "It was alright." Jackson replied as plainly as he could while he tried to hide his disappointment at having finished everything. Although it couldn't be compared to his foster mums dishes after not having ate something for almost two whole days everything tasted incredible to him.

It was clear Eric didn't buy his attempt at nonchalance however, "Well kid, I've got work to do; I'll come back in the morning and take you to get a tag and get you kitted out for the field, "Also, you'd better have made up your mind by tomorrow - I'm gonna tell her you're going to get some rest, you've got a beautiful woman like this asking you to team-up with her I wouldn't disappoint her if I was you." He winked before saying a few words to Cecilia.

She looked at Jackson then back to Eric, they began to speak too fast for Jackson to pick up on the words but it seemed that Eric had won as she looked downtrodden as she reluctantly said what he assumed was a goodbye. "Quite a tough one we've got here, I'll see you tomorrow kid." 

Jackson waved weakly after the two as he watched them walk out the front door of the Inn, "A Hunting Team huh?" He muttered, "Doesn't sound too bad..." Unknowingly a small grin had appeared on his face as Cecilia came to mind, "Not bad at all..." 

He didn't notice that he'd already arrived in front of his room, it was one of three rooms on the same floor, there was a small '9' engraved on a metal plate nailed to the front of the wooden door. Just as he went to open the door he heard one of the doors for the rooms next to him open and out of it a person shrouded in completely black robes.

The outfit was different to anything he'd seen so far in the city; he couldn't tell whether the person was a Hunter or not, from Eric's words before this Inn was a place only Hunters were allowed to rest in but the attire didn't suit any sort of Hunter he'd ever seen before. "Problem?" A cold voice came from beneath the robe as Jackson realised that he was staring, "No, sorry, just zoned out for a second hahaha." Jackson chuckled in embarrassment. 

He had an eerie feeling that this wasn't a person he wanted to mess with, there was no imposing pressure like he felt with Eric but he felt a chill down his spine just after the person had spoke. "Good." He couldn't tell whether the voice belonged to a man or woman from it alone, instead of waiting around he sheepishly opened the door to his room and walked inside, leaving the robed figure standing outside their room alone in the hallway.

"Another interesting Hunter..." Their voice was muffled as they turned their whole body to face the direction of Jackson's door, "How exciting."

...

'Oh I forgot to ask him if he was a Hunter or not, never mind.' He rejected any thought of going back out to see if he was still there, as much as he was interested in the answer to that question whoever the robed person was they gave off some seriously creep vibes that Jackson didn't want to mess with.

'So this is my room?'

It was rather spacious, much more so than anywhere he'd ever stayed before - there was a double king sized bed in the centre of the room surrounded by furniture ranging from tables and chairs to a sofa that even had a TV. The room even had a computer set-up on the desk in the corner for him to use.

He could see the bathroom from where he was standing, the bathroom had both a shower and a bath which surprised him - he hadn't seen a bath since before the cataclysm. They were told in Mayson that it was a waste of water and time for people to have baths, they'd even gone as far as claiming that the upper-level members of the government didn't have access to them.

But knowing what he knew now? 'Definitely lies, all of it. I swear if I ever get back to that city I'm gonna-' Jackson stopped himself at the last moment, what was he gonna do? If he revealed everything that the government of Mayson had been doing all these years then he'd be speeding up the inevitable but he'd also be practically inviting discord into the city. 

'Why is everything so complicated.' He complained as he collapsed onto the bed, the softness of the sheets let him drift off to sleep before he knew it, a soft snoring of a peaceful sleep.

Fortunately, Jackson had no way of knowing the amount of trouble Eric had brought down on him...

 

Hope you enjoyed!

Any mistakes/errors comment below and I'll fix them ASAP <3 Cya next update!

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