Story In The Round – Part 7

Hi everyone, I’m so thrilled to be part of Spellbound Scribes. Hope you like my inaugural post!

—-

That was an understatement.

With a jerk of my head, I motioned for Yuko to follow me into the woods, far enough so we didn’t attract attention, but near enough to draw on the power of the ritual and the white stones at its heart.

Ten years. I’d done nothing but practice for this day since my mother died. When my magic went with her, I turned to physical training, but the point was still the same. My destiny was to seek revenge for her untimely death – and all the others like her – and put an end to the madness that had caused it. But to do that, I would have to cross over into Neráida to kill the faerie King. I swallowed hard. No one had ever attempted that, not even in the shadowy times before recorded history.

But when they took Danny, I knew. Alek and Aria were here for our magic, just as my mother always feared. “Watch out for faeries and wraiths,” she’d say anytime we ventured out after dark, especially on the high holy days. We always thought it was a joke or her way of being overprotective. But obviously, the threat was very real. Sure, faeries appeared beautiful in this world, but I’d glimpsed their true, dark nature in Aria’s eyes. Once she was in her own plane, she’d drop the glamour and reveal herself as a monster.

All this because of something in our DNA, some strand of magic that had become entwined with our bloodline. The faerie King thought it would break the spell that held them in a barren land, giving them free reign into our world just has they had before our ancestors built the stone circles to keep them at bay.

But the joke was on him. By some fluke, they’d picked the wrong cousin to enchant. Danny didn’t have any magic in his blood. That’s why he’d spent his whole life with cauldrons, wands and spell books, trying to develop any latent talent he might have, while I could flood the whole house on a whim. He would do them no good. Strike one against the fairies.

I sighed. That was the least of my problems. Now that Danny was under their spell, he would blindly follow them to the other side, becoming a wrath – an undead faerie solider – without even realizing what had happened. That’s what happened to all spellbound humans who passed through the veil.

Beside me, Yuko hummed a tune that twined with the rhythm of the drums. I glanced over at my new ally. I hated to admit it, but I needed him. He was the only hunter in this part of the States. If I was going to get to the King, I’d probably have to go through the two faeries and their new zombie lapdog, Danny. My heart squeezed painfully at the thought. There was one way to bring Danny back unharmed, and my newly-restored powers made it possible, but I wasn’t sure I could pull it off. Better to have backup in case I needed it. Strike two.

“There. Stop.” I led Yuko to a small pond that cast back a glimmering reflection of the bonfire. The stones were obscured from sight by the ring of smoke and flames, but I felt them pulsing as surely as the blood in my own veins. “The faeries are probably still guarding their gateway, but I can create a mirror portal just long enough for us to get through. Chances are good Alek and Aria will sense my magic and chase us back to other side. I’ll need you to stop their spells while I kill them. Leave Danny for last – we’ll save him if we can.”

Yuko, a man of few words, simply nodded.

I took a deep breath, closed my eyes, and began to chant.

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