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Ghost: The Birth of a Ghost (Birthday Vignette)

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The Arena was turning out to be the place where Sammy could simply relax and enjoy himself. On his free days, he enjoyed heading over to the abondoned oil rig and simply have a drink or two without having to worry about who might be out to get him. Today, however, had more meaning for the young man.

"Give me bourbon straight up. And leave the bottle, Dan," Sammy said as he sat down at the bar.

Dan, the bartender at the Arena came over with the bottle and placed it on the counter before Sammy. "Not like you to drink like this so early, Sammy. Something on your mind?"

Sammy looked up at Dan and smiled. "Yeah. Today's my birthday."

Sammy ran down the corridor with the small box in craddled in his hands. Alarms and the sound of pursit followed the young man as he tried to find a safe way out of the building. Sammy took a moment to look over his shoulder and caught a glimpse of the guards following quickly behind.

'Oh man! I'm not going to make it. If those guys catch me, I'll get locked up for sure. I'm going to need a miricale to get out here!'

Sammy turned the corner and saw an open doorway. With no other options, he quickly darted inside and shut the door. The thief paused as he scanned the office he was in for any other exits. The room was fairly empty, only a desk and a large bookcase was present in the unadorn room.

'There's got to be something in here!'

Sammy moved over to the bookcase, contemplating whether he could move it to block the door when he felt a slight tingle run down his spine. Without understanding why, he reached for one of the books on the shelf and pulled down on it. An audible click rang in the room right before the bookcase slid open to reveal another door.

'Woah! It's my lucky day!'

Sammy opened the door and quickly entered the new room. Just as he entered the room, the bookcase returned to its normal position. Sammy put his ear against the wall and listened as the guards entered the room he had just left. After a few moments, the guards left leaving Sammy safely hidden in the secret room.

The new room was much smaller than the previous one and Sammy could see that it had not been in use for some time. A quick examination of the area produced another secret door that lead to a corridor. Without having any other options, Sammy followed it.

It must have been an hour or so before he emerged from a drainage pipe a good two blocks away from the building. Sammy smiled and gave a short prayer for his good luck before heading to the rendezvous point he had set up with his employer.

"Oh, your Birthday? Well happy birthday to you, Sammy. How old are you now," asked Dan.

Sammy took a sip of the bourbon before answering, "About six years old now."

The warehouse where he was supposed to meet his employer was well out of the city. It was not a place that Sammy had really wanted to visit, but if he wanted to get paid, he had to abide by his employer's wishes to remain outside of the city.

Sammy entered the warehouse and saw that candles placed in various places was the only lighting in the place. A group of candles were located on the floor in the shape of a star of some kind but Sammy didn't pay any attention to it. He was here to get paid, not admire his employer's taste in decorations. Standing at the tip of the star was the man that had hired him.

Sammy knew little about the guy, not even his name, but his down payment for the job was very nice. The second half of the payment was enough to make Sammy forget about his usual practice of knowing something about the people that employed him.

"Were you successful? Do you have the package?" asked the man in a very nasal voice.

Sammy cringed at the strange sound of the man but again ignored teh feeling. He wasn't being paid to like the guy.

"Yeah, I got it," Sammy said while holding it up to be seen. "Where's my money?"

The man smiled and rubbed his hands together. "All in good time, Mr. Cosentino. If you would indulge me and step inside the star, I'll verify that the item is what I paid you to retrieve."

Sammy shrugged his shoulders and entered the area. "Whatever you like. As long as I get paid."

As soon as Sammy had entered teh area, the man began speaking in a strange language. Sammy tried to follow the words but they were meaningless to him. The package Sammy held in his hands began to radiate warmth in rhythm to the words floating in the air. Invisible mystical energy began to wrap around Sammy tying him to the forces that were being called.

The whole process was fairly short and the man smiled as he looked at Sammy. "Yes, it is exactly what I asked to get. You can take out the amulet and hand it to me know, Mr. Cosentino."

Sammy opened the package to reveal a beautiful amulet with strange runes written all about it. As he looked at the amulet, the runes seemed to move about as if they were alive. Sammy gave another slight shudder of revulsion before taking hold of the small item. As soon as his flesh touched the amulet, he felt a jolt of energy flow from it to him. Sammy pulled back his hand and noticed that the runes were no longer moving about.

'Not my problem.' Sammy tossed the amulet over to the man who caught it quickly and placed it into a pocket.

"The rest of your payment is over there by the table, Mr. Cosentino. Enjoy it. You've earned it." The man moved back and watched as Sammy collected his payment. As Sammy began to leave the warehouse, the man spoke one last itme. "Lady Fortune will watch over you, Mr. Cosentino. I'd advise you to remember that from now on."

Sammy looked back at the man and tilted his head. "Sure. I'll make sure to do that."


"Six? What, twenty six?"

Sammy laughed at the thought and shook his head. "No Dan. This is the day my professional life changed. Its the day The Ghost was born."

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