New Life in Rianate 7
Last part of this series, most likely. Continued from Part 6 so I advise you read that first.
Tao gave my hand a firm grasp and assisted me on getting passed the wood that completely fell down to the concrete below. The rusty, metal door was cracked open just a few inches, so Tao and I crouched down to peek through the jamb. I couldn’t see much, since the door was beyond a normal size and, Tao’s blue hair was in the way.
“Move,” I whispered.
She walked the the other side of the door and I peeked through. The first thing I noticed: an extremely tall person with green hair and a long black dress on. Tao tapped my shoulder which made me jump and gasp, almost falling off of the rickety landing.
“What?!” I roughly whispered.
“I’m going to crack it further,” Tao said hushedly.
I nodded, moving my fingers so I didn’t have to have bad fingers. With her manicured fingertips, Tao bit down on her lip, shut her eyes and rifted the door open by a millimeter, and despite that fact that we were completely silent, the door made the soft rurr sound and Tao gasped. I pulled her away and slammed my hand down on her mouth before both of us were seriously hurt. Footsteps. Light, getting louder, stopping at the door. My eyes and Tao’s were the size of tennis balls and a man with rustic red hair peeked his head out. He caught my eye and tilted his head to the side as if he was thinking something.
“Stay here,” he whispered.
Tao and I both let out sighs, the man closing the door and saying something very loud. We pressed our ear to the cold material to listen.
“What the hell was that noise?” a first voice boomed.
“Two girls. One with really blue hair and the other with teal. Know who they are?” It was the man, his voice was hushed and he was speaking directly to another man with another enrapturing voice.
“Wait…,” this was a woman so speak, “the girl with the teal hair. And blue hair?”
“Yes… Holy shit!”
“Go get them!”
By now, there were six voices: three different women, three men. This time Tao and I didn’t freak out when the door opened, but I do think I pissed my pants.
“Shh, you have to be quiet.” Her pink hair and hazel eyes were the same. I knew it was her I was just confused as to why and how it was her.
She grabbed our hands, bringing us through the door and I had to take a moment to wrap my head around the group of people before me.
My eyes scanned over the room, but locked on a woman with bright red hair. Her pretty orange eyes were glowing and her bottom lip was trapped between her vibrant teeth.
“Eris…” she whispered.
“Mom…” I could barely make out her short figure through the tears forming in my eyes. How and why the fuck was she there? But, I just wanted to wrap my arms around her and cry into her shoulder. I wanted to break down my life into 18 different hours, tell her about all of my birthdays, tell her the first boy I kissed (surprisingly, it was not Dallas), tell her that I loved her a million more times than I had been doing for the past 16 years. I just wanted to tell her anything.
“Ba!” I turned to Tao as she noticed a man with jet black hair, who I knew to be her father. He had the same Chinese features as Tao and his eyes were an unbelievable shade of emerald. Yep, that was her father.
They shared a small smile and just as Aya leaned into me to whisper something, a voice I was far too familiar with flitted my ears and soft footsteps sounded throughout the room, the area dearth of much furniture to keep the soundwaves from bouncing back and echoing.
“How did you two follow me? You should be killed for this,” Lena pathetically said. I could tell by the apprehensive glow in her eyes that she wasn’t expecting two more guests to her party. “What, are you here to play tea party and catch up with your murdered parents? News flash, children, but, you can’t see these fuckers anymore because they’re dead”—Lena scoffed and slammed down a glass jar on the wooden table she was standing behind. “Not like half of these people would want you as their kid anyway.”
My mother, short and frail-looking, threw a glass jar at her feet and Lena jumped back from the bursting shards of glass.
“You dare not say that” she eloquently roared. The black dresses that all of the women had on were so… “fitting” for Lena’s evil personality and the men were dressed in all black. Mom tossed her red hair behind her shoulder and continued: “Lena, you are in no place to chastise anyone when you, you yourself are the biggest piece of shit that I’ve ever met.” Work it, Mom. “I’m not dead by choice or natural causes, no, I’m dead because you wouldn’t put your ego behind you and you wanted more power than—”
“Yes, Layla! It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that I’m a selfish bitch who loathes children and their revolting parents! Would you like to know why you’re dead and not babying your child?! Because, I, Lena, am selfish and a self-concerned asshole who killed you with Black Magick to eliminate the strongest generation of Rian.”
“What…” All eyes were on Lena and she started laughing. Like a crazy woman.
“Oh boy,” she chuckled. “So, did my brother send you here?”
I shook my head before and answered, “No. Brice saw you leave the mansion.”
“Sons of Alke and Sons of Kratos are losing their shit looking for you,” Tao added.
Lena gave us a disgruntled look and rolled her dark eyes.
“Well, he has never been so good defending himself. That’s why Brice always needed someone by his side to baby him and take care of him.”
I gave her a confused face but Lena held up a hand with a knife. She lowered it and said, “When we were children, Brice always had this… ‘fantasy’ about becoming something powerful, something charismatic. Ya know, it doesn’t always end too well for most people. As we got older, he became more and more helpless, as in, he did not want to leave Rianate when he turned 18, he did not want to abandon our Mother and Father for another life. So, being the wildchild that I was, I told him to man up and accustom to a life as an adult. But, yet again, it was always Lena the bad child. And, our powers developed, and I got the hang of being a potent Leader… Brice did not.” She shrugged. “So I told the fucker to grow up, and anyone he saw as a ‘strong leader’ with ‘much potential,’ as in your families and their children, I killed them. Think: a police officer kills an innocent young man, the world doesn’t blame him because the police officer was ‘defending himself’ and he saw the man as a threat. It’s the same as being a High Rian: no one’s blaming me, because I’m here to ‘protect,’ and to keep y’all safe. But all in all, I couldn’t give less of a fuck about you or your stupid little powers. That’s why it is so easy to be manipulative and a self-seeking asshole! Why do you think Brice is so fucked in the head? Because he’s selfless; he cares about other people when really, other people are pieces of shit–especially if they have teal hair–and whatever Brice does, I say ‘fuck it’ and turn around and do the opposite.”
Tao made a “wha?!” sound.
“Lena: crazy kid, a bit of a hybrid—shall I say—and, independent. Brice: foolish, nonviolent and always helping people. Well, maybe it is time to stop being so altruistic and become become the opposite—that’s what I did. Fast Forward to the present, I’m the one to take matters into my own hands and conquer my power, not stand by and watch someone else live it. Brice can die for all I care, but I on the other hand, I wanted the powers so I thieved the powers. Eris, are you really that dumb?! Your best friend dies right after you lose your power, and your other best friend loses her own powers! Plus, you’ve got a crazy bitch chasing you in circles all day, making your life a living hell!”
She cackled so loudly that she put her hands on the tabletop, and burst into more laughter. Tao glanced at me, rolled her eyes and sighed. Lena stood up straight then fixed herself and continued: “It all ties together now, huh?! And Tao. Did you expect your life to go on with that boy, Maz? He’s a Dark Son, and, we all know that Dark Sons get around. All of that lovey-dovey shit was just an act. Oh, and uh, Eris, that little situation with the weed, he put that together. Wasn’t my idea, I was just along for the ride.”
“You’re not the only one,” Tao muttered. I know she was pissed off by Lena’s harsh words so I patted her lower back and cleared my throat.
Lena shook her head, probably clearing her wicked mind for some new thoughts then looked directly into my eyes.
“Just, one question,” I said without looking away from her, “how in the hell did you get them here?” I gestured to our parents and Aya, and the other faces I didn’t recognize.
“Oh, I’ve killed everyone in this room. And, you both know how your best friend died. Since she died in your arms. I mean, honestly, I have already told you that I’m not a people person, so…. can I say that I’m using them as ritual stand-ins? Shit, it’s not all that hard to kill someone. Especially, like I said before, when you can predict that their children are going to be powerful and kind of annoying. I knew what type of children they would have. It just takes a little hypothesis and a bit of your brain to figure it out. Honestly. For example, Layla and Jeff were most likely to have a kid with an affinity for an Element, but instead, they got one that controlled all four. And—”
All of the adults’ exclamations made me jump, since they directed their voices to me. Mom bit down on her lip saying, “That doesn’t exist. I’ve got a special daughter!” She giggled and the rest of the adults laughed and shook their heads at me.
“Don’t get your panties in a bunch; her powers are gone. But, I have them,” Lena said in a singsong voice, completely killing the vibe(would it be appropriate to say she killed everyone and their vibes?). “And, Eris, that little accusation that Maz and I created, it worked perfectly, huh? You called your Father, asking him if he believed it, you cried on your boyfriend’s shoulder, your best friend lost a boyfriend, and it all just went—” Lena blew a raspberry with her thumb pointing downwards. “Ya see, I extinguished them all in the same year because I had an important ritual and spell to perform; I even provided some for a few friends. That year was the perfect year to kill them all, and it may have inflicted another spell on another person, but, I guess I can save that story for later. Of course, I drowned Indiana and Detroit first in Texas, then garroted Ross and PeyTon in Arizona. But, after that, I figured it would be inane of me to kill them all, and leave behind patterns. After all, I had been gone that entire year and, I was really using the ‘vacation’ as a killing spree. So, I switched from both parents to one parent. After that, I went to Florida and brought along a few dragons, then found Caden and did a big number on him. One day, my husband, Axton, pissed me off, so, I cast a spell and, he internally burned and died in our bed. Oh, and after him, I found Kin practicing on campus, so, I shot him up. My beautiful sister-in-law, Ma’at. I cast a spell, that made her do everything until she died of mind control. And of course, little Eris watched her mommy get her throat slit in the backyard. So, any questions?? I guess you’re wondering how long it took me, who accompanied me while I traveled all over the country, or maybe why I used my nephews to help me, or why the ephemeral time with your parents. I dunno, ask them.” She smiled and tossed some salt in a circle in the corner of the room.
Aya rolled her eyes. “Lena, what good is salt gonna do you if you’re the evil one?”
“I think she’s doing the ice and salt challenge,” Tao whispered, jokingly.
I shot her a dirty look. “Really? You’re making jokes, right now? What if she kills us? The last thing you ever said was ‘I’m an asshole and I’m gonna make jokes as we’re screaming our heads off and dying. Har har.’”
We tried to keep a straight face but Aya broke out giggling and holding her stomach. At the worst times, we were making jokes and laughing.
“See,” Lena growled. “That’s the annoying thing about you three: you don’t know how to shut up and be serious.”
“Rude!” Aya pointed a finger at Lena. “Says the crusty old woman who feeds off of children.”
Tao and I both slapped her arms and Aya did a teasing face at Lena. Okay, at the worst, worst times, Aya was still making jokes and putting all of our lives at risk. As Aya settled down, my eyes scanned over the room so I could know what my surroundings were.
The room was probably the size of two of my classrooms put into one, and a bunch of storage stuff and plastic coverings thrown everywhere. On the west wall, there were big plastic covers over the broken ceiling-to-floor wall, and it was a great height to fall down to the cement. The cold night breeze was making everything wild, there were a few loose papers, the plastic was loud and obnoxious, and the four banged-up light fixtures barely had working bulbs, so the sound of electricity crackling and a slight creaking filled the top floor. The dim light was casting creepy shadows over everything, so any which way I turned, there was something to worry about. I even spotted a tiny rat in a corner, scurrying along to get somewhere other than here.
Lena cleared her throat once more.
“So Lena,” I directed towards her, “your point of all of this is to hurt people and have excessive powers?”
Lena nodded. “Yep. And, trust me, if I had not of taken their lives, things around campus would be so much different. Oh! And, Eris, you do remember the one time you were in Dallas’ apartment and I accused him of killing that dragon? Or, the numerous occasions I have had to talk to the Twins about stealing or killing? Yeah, I did all of that stuff myself.”
Wow, and Superman flies.
Lena winked at us and a rusty grandfather clock in the back of the room tolled 1am.
“Ah! It’s time!” she exclaimed. Lena snatched up nine Kilner jars full of dust, lined them up on the table and grabbed a knife. She started speaking a form of ancient Riate that was hard to follow as she slit her wrist, leaving behind a long line of scarlet red blood. I could see something changing over her, like she was Bruce Banner forming into the Incredible Hulk, only she was not turning green and she most definitely was not becoming larger and buffer. Instead, her long blue hair whipped in the wild breeze, I could even spot her racing pulse throbbing under her skin, and her voice was booming through the air. All of the dust shook and vibrated in the jars, making a loud clanking noise on the wood that reminded me of a bunch of girls racing in heels (if that was safe). Lena finished the spell, and all of the dust embedded in her body, and before I knew it, the entire building was rumbling, the lights were flickering on and off, and Lena was shouting another spell. By time everything calmed down, Lena had disappeared from sight.
“Shit,” I muttered.
“Language,” Mom grinned. She gave me a little wink and I remembered her doing that all the time when I was a little girl.
“DON’T YOU GUYS JUST LOVE BEING POWERFUL?! I SURE AS HELL DO!”
We all peered off to the south wall, and I think we all had the same look on. Lena’s spell had given herself all of the power. Every affinity in those jars, and she was more intimidating than I’d expect. Her royal blue hair had turned over all ten colors, with different shades of every color, and she had my powers. A small patch of her hair was teal! And a small patch of her hair was the same blue as Tao’s. The creepiest thing was her eye color. The dark brown pupils had gone completely black, and I couldn’t make anything out. Lena’s evil grin had me shuddering in my head and shoulders.
“Eris, I never got to tell you happy birthday.” She flicked her wrist and an invisible energy sent me flying into a pile of broken glass.
I screamed out when a massive, broken shard embedded itself into my leg. With that lightning-Rian speed, Lena was tossing Tao around, and had her up on the wall, suffocating from unseen hands. I couldn’t turn onto my side, couldn’t move my arm from under my chest, instead, I had to bite my lip to keep in the tears that had formed in my eyes. Reluctantly, I reached down and forced the shard out, which had torn through my jeans and got a few inches into my flesh. I threw the blood-covered glass to the side then limped back over with most of weight on my left leg, but was flung back to the missing window by a strong wind. I knew I wasn’t afraid of heights but uhm, I was afraid of heights if I was dangling off the side of a building. The little broken bullets of glass were digging into my palms, scraping my hands and making it harder to keep a good grip on the freezing cold cement. It was still early March, so all of that snow and wind was destroying my body and my body was starting to sway in the air. The plastic was making it harder to grab on, and there were more shards of glass hanging on the corners of the wall. Okay, I love that they were trying to stop her, but it wasn’t making my pulse slow down. Lena used a breeze to keep me from climbing back up, and I could feel my fingers slipping on the hard floor. I gasped. I fell. I screamed. I stopped.
Her face was overhead, peeking out of the window I had just fallen from. How was I not dead? How was my body not just a spray of blood? I felt light, like I was floating… floating. I tilted my head backwards, seeing the concrete and grass upside down and the ground was a few feet under my body. I kicked my foot up, my black boots coming to view over my head and I was then sure that I was floating. Think of exorcism movies: the body is possesed, and the person is hovering over the bed or table or floor like something is supporting them under their backs. This was honestly what I was in. The light of the crescent moon was glowing down at me, and the small snow was flurrying down and coating my clothes. I squinted past the white particle and saw Lena. She was smiling down at me.
“Are you comfortable? You look like it,” she said.
“You wait. Because I’m going to kick your ass back to birth, bitch,” I growled.
“Those are some very foul–” Lena disappeared from sight and was yanked backwards.
Someone else was in the window. He was very handsome, like I had seen him before, other than tonight. The window was about 20 feet above me, but he just rubbed his chin and said, “You ever been rock climbing?”
“Is this an appropriate question?! My leg hurts and all of the blood is rushing to my brain!” I exclaimed.
“I can’t help you unless you answer the question.”
I sighed and squinted my eyes closed. “Yes, I’ve been rock climbing.
“Good. Grab onto the wall and climb back up.”
“I can’t.” He held his hand out and I reached for him, my body sitting up and reacting.
I was still floating but it was like I was sitting on an invisible bed or platform and it was supporting every move I made. Holding onto my bad leg and depending entirely on my right side, I pushed myself up so I was standing on nothing and my hands were flat against the rough wall of the building. Other than jagged bricks and broken rocks, there was nothing I could grab onto and carry myself up. The man with the green and blue striped hair was still looking down at me. Now, my mother was standing behind him and saying, “Baby, are you okay? Get your ass up here!”
I can always count on my mother to curse at these times.
“How am I supposed to get up there?” I exclaimed back at them.
She shrugged. “You have to climb. Remember as a baby when you’d climb up the couch?”
“Yeah. But, this isn’t the time for reminiscing!” I sighed aloud and the man with the blue and green hair stepped to the side so Mom could peek down.
“Get your ass up here, right now,” she forced.
“Now. I will count to ten and you better be up here.”
I gave her a confused look. “How–what–Mom!” She pointed her finger at me and pulled her lips tight and I put one foot on the brick to make her happy. Shit, I had to make her happy; I hadn’t seen her in over a decade.
I couldn’t use my bad leg, so I was really depending on two arms and one foot to get me up there. As I was climbing the fourth foot or so, the wind redirected, and I was pulled back through the plastic. Mm grabbed my face and started complaining in a high-pitched voice like any mother would do about her child.
“Oh my gosh, my BABY! Are you hurt? Do you have to throw up? Where’s the most pain? Eris, are–”
“Layla, shut up.” Lena was behind us and she raised a hand to hurt her but Mom threw a middle finger, which had her palm lighting up in a burning flame. It kind of surprised me that her hand could still burn, but she wasn’t using any of her powers against Lena. I didn’t get to say anything or move a bit before Lena used Air to fling me the other way and to another window of broken glass. This window was not entirely missing, but it had a gigantic hole in it and I fell forward into another pile of disintegrated glass. I pushed my leg to the floor, looking up and seeing a flying ball of ice directing at my face. I gasped. It took a lot of effort to roll out of the way and safely on my stomach, but at least the ice hit the ground instead of me. I inched back to my feet, feeling the tons of blood gushing in my hand. I had rolled onto another piece of glass, and I balled my fist around the sharp object, so nothing was pouring out just yet. Slowly, I opened my hand and my lip trembled even harder; the gash rapidly leaked my blood, coating my palm in a flushed color. I gasped and cried out as I pulled the glass out, then tossed it onto the ground with my good hand.
I didn’t get to help my best friend from bleeding out in the corner before Lena used my Air power to lurch me into the north wall. She slammed me a few times, then let my limp body land back on the ground, away from the large hole. The sharp feeling of frostbite ran through my body, and I knew that Lena was using Tao’s power to freeze my body like I was to be an icicle. I didn’t get to fully freeze before my body was attacked by little prickling. As if holes were being shot into me. SHOT! Lena was using Kin’s (Tao’s Father) power to assault my body with invisible bullets and rapid tingling. The pain stopped. I rolled onto my stomach, coughing and gasping for air in my lungs. With no hands, Lena had managed to bang my body up like I was a rag doll and make me ache and take this type of abuse. I slowly crawled to my feet, grunting and holding my arm, which I think was now dislocated.
“You have it easy, Eris. Come to a new life, get some cool powers, then have everyone worship you,” Lena boomed, her voice sending a sharp sting through my anatomy.
I got that ringing in my ears, the kind you get when all the blood rushes to the anger center of your brain. And boy, did I have a lot of pent up anger at that moment. Lena had rotated her body to attack Tao again, but I spotted a large, jagged, sharp piece of broken glass the size of a slate board, and big enough to stick into somebody. I picked it up, stalked behind Lena and WHACK! right into her spine. The black and white shirt she had been wearing slashed, and Lena fell to her knees, coughing and spitting up blood. Tao stood up, then looked at me with a praising gaze. The scar under eye seemed to dance as she placed a finger on her lip and gathered a small smudge of blood.
“Where did you get that?” she asked.
“On the floor,” I said as I tossed to glass to the wall, letting it shatter to a million tiny pieces. Lena was starting to lift her head, but Tao stepped on the back of her neck and slammed her face into the ground with a very fashionable boot.
She used her Stealth power to quickly scramble up, and dart to the back of the room and seize a dagger that was large enough to probably kill a tiger. She was at a stance where I could easily run up and shove her to her ass, so I took a step to the side so I would be able to run directly at her body.
“I told you!” Lena boomed. “Your life is a living hell right now! You’ve been beaten so much that you can barely stand straight! And I have all of your powers, so, what are you gonna do?! Call 911?! Ask your Mom to help you?! Nothing! You know why? Because—” Lena threw the knife and got me in the right leg.
I howled in pain, then sank to my butt and arched my leg a bit. Great, both of my legs were fucked up, I had bruises everywhere, and my arm was dislocated! Whoopty-fucking doo for Eris today, huh.There was no time to yank it out before Lena flung me into more glass, and my throat clogged up like someone was grasping my neck in their hand. I gasped over and over again, clawing my nails at the invisible force cutting off my airway.
“YOU’RE HURTING HER! LET GOOO!” My mother had a set of lungs.
There was a ring of fire around my body, and I still couldn’t breathe. Hot hot hot. Air air air. Roots of trees wrapped around my arms and legs, pinning be down in the tortuous glass shards. Move move move. There was a loud shatter, then an ultrasonic screeching that made my ears ring even harder, and it made my head feel like a bass drum. Screaming. Screeching. Aching. The torment was akin to Satan whipping his tail across my bare skin—excruciating and I could feel my body heating up from the powerful burning sensation. The roots locked around my bad leg—though both of them had taken a kicking—and I tried to sit up and hold it, but the roots were squeezing my arms and neck. My arm throbbed under the pressure, I was attempting to suck in air, my legs were pinned and I was just having a bad day. I was choking, I couldn’t hear anything, and I was trying my hardest to break my restraints. The pain was so wicked and tortuous that I felt myself blackout for a second. There was a loud crash…I felt the numbness in my arm… I smelt the metallic blood… I know it had no taste, but the sting of my own blood on my tongue… I could see the swirling colors everytime I opened my eyes, and nothing but nothing when I closed my eyes.
Air traveled to my lungs. The burning went away. I could move my body freely. It all went away. Thank god. The roots disappeared, the flames burned out, and I could barely breathe, but it was something.
When I glanced up, Tao was running at me full speed, with two boxes in her hands. It was the box Dad gave me when he first took me through the portal with my initials carved into the top.
“Open it,” she rasped. There was a big cut on her lip, and I could feel the gash on my neck leaking into my collarbone.
I smashed open the strong clasp, and I had to toss the box to the side because it was too much. Like an F5 tornado was approaching , everything in sight started blowing, getting tossed around, and even the omnipotent Lena had to cover her eyes. I opened one eye, and saw a glowing light coming from her dark body.
Honestly, she sounded like the Wicked Witch of the West from the Wizard of Oz, all she had to do was scream “I’m melting, I’m melting!” and have a pointy hat. Her screeching made my ears hurt again, but there was a loud bursting that had my body shaking and I had to cover my ears. The booming and shaking was over, and there were colorful little dust particles flying everywhere. I squinted my eyes open, then gasped. Lena had exploded. Seriously. All of that colorful dust had been in her hair, and those were the powers. It wasn’t long before the dust separated by color, then directed toward me and Tao at full speed.
An exciting jolt of energy shot down my spine, and I was left laying on the ground with my dislocated arm being crushed under my weight. My powers were back, but I wasn’t sure if that was it. There was a hand on my shoulder and a soft voice. I glanced up, seeing it was Aya’s mother, PeyTon. Her blue and green hair draped behind her black satin dress, and she smiled at me saying, “Hello, beautiful. Let’s get you up.” She turned her head and nodded, then Cade picked me off of the ground.I couldn’t walk on my right leg, so he balanced me on his broad body. Across the room, Tao had Indiana gently carrying her arm while she weakly walked toward me.
“You all have to release us with a Riate spell. Since Lena is gone, we need someone with strong powers to do it,” Kin announced.
“Wait, why can’t you all just come back—”
“It’s not an option,” Cade frowned.
“But, before we go, we should probably introduce ourselves like normal people—or dead people,” Aya giggled, coming over and looping her arms through mine.
“For you old adults who don’t know who this is, this is Eris: Layla and Jeff’s daughter who controls the four—sorry. She now controls the Five Elements, and she is the abestestest friend ever.” I kissed her cheek before she smiled at Tao.
“This is Tao: Kin and Sumiko’s daughter with an affinity for Ice. Now, she has control over Ice, Snow and Water. I’ve known her ever since I came to Rianate.” They shared a teeny kiss before Aya ran over to her mother.
“Momma Rinah, aka PeyTon. Her green and blue hair shows her affinity for World. I’ve used her so many times to cheat on tests.” Her mother thumped her on her head.
Aya grabbed her Father and smiled.
“Daddy Rinah, aka Ross. Ask him any Math question, and he’ll get you an A+ in no time. And, we have similar hair color.” His bright lavender hair was as gentle as Aya’s pastel pink.
Indiana was next. “His affinity is Stealth. Never try to race him, because you will end up losing your pride and any thoughts you had about being fast.” He ruffled her hair and Aya giggled.
“You’ve already met Cade, but he is the Twins’ father. His affinity is Autumn, and he’s a softy.” Cade smiled and Aya ruffled his dirty red hair.
Detroit and Aya seized each other’s hands, then started a giggly dance of the Salsa.
“This is Detroit, and she is super-mom. She loves Water and anything the shade of blue. When she lived in Michigan, she spent all of her time at the Great Lakes, and Detroit loves anything that has to do with kids.”
Aya gave Detroit a small kiss on the cheek, then went over to Axton and Ma’at.
“Ma’at was Brice’s wife; Axton was married to Lena. Ma’at is the name of an Egyptian Goddess, and Ma’at has the same power for Truth. Axton can speak any language in two seconds; his vocabulary tops anyone’s.”
Aya didn’t go over to my Mom, or to Tao’s Dad. They came over to us and gave us another hug that I had been needing since I was 2. Not seeing your mother for years was something weird, especially if you’d watched her get murdered. I always needed her. I needed her when I got braces. I needed her when I found out I had two cavities. I needed her when I realized my eyesight was terrible. I needed her when I “became a woman” in gym class and had to tell Dad by myself. I needed her at homecoming. I needed her when my dog, Lurie, died when I was 10.
I NEEDED HER.
“I missed you, baby,” Mom whispered. “You’re more beautiful than I could imagine. Who let you get all of this metal in your ear?” She traced her finger over the hoop helix, and smiled and wiped the blood off of my cheek.
“Daddy, when I was 15,” I smiled. “He also let me get contacts when I was 12. He let me get a four-wheeler on my 10th birthday. And, he exposed me to comic books when I was 4.”
“Oh, Jeff. He was always the wild parent. But, uhm, what’s this about a boyfriend?”
My eyes got wide and I felt Mom laughing.
“I’m just kidding, Fairy”—Mom gave me the nickname Fairy because I used to watch this Fairy movie all of the time—”let’s go talk with Indiana, I hear it’s one of his boys.”
Mom and I crossed over to Indiana, who had been laughing and talking with his wife. Mom said something to him in an old form of Riate, then he glanced at me with bright hazel eyes.
“You got the wildcard, huh? Come here,” he said.
I followed he and his wife to another window, and Indiana held my shoulders.
“Just know that I don’t think it is appropriate for a dead man to give you a lecture about his son. Anyway, has he given you the chance to meet his sisters? You’ll really like them,” he smiled.
I stammered. “Dayton and Dakota… they lost their powers a few years ago because they were killing humans.”
Detroit shook her long blue hair.
“Figures. I knew they were too good to be true,” she scoffed.
“Detroit. Let’s not forget the older boy,” Indiana gently said to her. Wait, older boy? Dallas was younger than both his siblings. Must be a senile mistake.
“You love that boy as hard as you can,” Detroit interjected. “He needs a type of care that no other person except for four people in this world have shown him.” She got close to my ear and whispered, “Don’t judge him because of his ADHD. Please don’t; he doesn’t need any more hurting in his life.”
I hugged her then smiled at Papa Bear. I gave him a long hug, stood up on my tippy toes and kissed his cheek.
“Trust me, Dallas will have a lot to deal with after I show him these powers,” I said.
“Is that a code for sex?”
I gasped and dropped my face into my hands.
“I’m kidding,” Indiana laughed. He had a beautiful laugh. Like Dallas’ would, his hazel eyes changed to a dark blue when he blinked.
“Oh, it is almost 3am. You two have to release us,” Cade announced.
Tao and I nodded, then limped behind them to a big wall with Kilner jars on the floor. They told us a few words, slowly and obviously trying to stay longer. Tao and I gave them all hugs, hugging our parents longer and whispering our last words to them.
“Mom, I have to tell you something…” I sighed.
She tilted her fiery red hair. “What? Please tell me you are not pregnant…”
I giggled. “No. I just want to tell you that Dad misses you. Every day. More and more. And, I miss you more than anything, and, I got your messages when I cast my circle.”
She grinned. “I just wanted to be connected with my daughter once more before I became a full Goddess. Lena had been planning this for a while, ya know.” We shared one last hug and kiss before I stepped back to Tao.
When we got to Aya, we broke into tears and whispered “I love you” a million times.
I pulled back, Tao kissed her father one more time then held my hand.
“Huwpl quent saszsd loyero fanxa!”
They bowed to us, and their bodies dispersed into dark orange dust, which all floated into jars with their symbols and colors. Tao sniffled a few more times before I said, “We’ll take them back.”
“Right. Wait… this ritual stuff… we can’t leave it.” Tao gestured around to the tons of Black Magick materials and I groaned as I sat my four jars down on the floor.
I hadn’t had my powers in what seemed like forever, so I used Air to crash all of the jars of blood, a big skull, a few knives and some other sage through the missing wall, and I made sure I heard a loud-ass shattering and crashing on the hard cement down below. Tao froze a few of the items and they exploded from the pressure and she gave me a big grin.
“Well, I guess it’s all over,” she said.
“Yeah. And I have to call them to let them know.”
Tao opened the large door and I put my foot on the rattled wood, but I didn’t have time to react as my body was lifted over the hellbenders, and my feet were planted on the concrete down below. I glanced up, seeing Tao’s surprised look and her body shaking with laughter.
“How did you do that?!!” she exclaimed, laughing harder.
“I don’t know. Come on,” I giggled.
“What if I fall through the floor and end up dying?”
I rolled my eyes, but Tao disappeared from my sight. Where in the hell…
Rapid footsteps sounded above my head, and I glanced heavenward, to see Tao running at me full speed and she lunged forward and jumped down the steps. I tried not to step to the side, but I couldn’t resist. She landed on her feet and shook her wild hair behind her shoulders.
“How in the fuck did you do that?!” I yelled. Actually yelled.
“I had a vision and I knew it’d work,” she sighed. “But… Now my leg feels even shittier.”
“Come on, we gotta hurry up and get back.”
Tao hadn’t had a knife thrown into her leg, so I was hurriedly limping after her while we exited the crumpling warehouse and to the air-car. I revealed the vehicle, and it took me a while to get myself together as I leaned on the wheel and took deep breaths. Tao rested her cold palm on my thigh.
“Are you okay?”
“I’m fine, my throat and leg hurts… Well, my entire body does, including my brain,” I weakly chuckled.
“Sorry. Do you want me to drive?” she asked.
I shook my head and tucked a strand of hair behind my ear and clutched my fingers around the wheel to get back to the portal.
After returning the car back to the garage at 5am, Tao and I made our way to Ria. 84 and knocked on Brice’s door. He had already been talking to someone, that someone being Dad, Sumiko, Chryseis, the Twins and Dallas.
We ran over to him and hugged Brice as strong as we could.
“Where is she?” he gently asked.
“Dead,” we answered.
“Girls, sit. Christopher, heal them,” Chryseis said.
As Tao and I sat in the newly-changed velvet chairs, Bull kneeled in front of my chair and whispered, “Are you okay?” He raised his hand to my lip and healed the small cut.
“I’m okay.” He glided his hand down my arm, and the doves soothed my insides while the scrapes and bruises on my skin disappeared.
“Girls,” Brice said, pushing us to tell him more.
“I saw Dad,” Tao said.
“I saw Mom,” I added.
“We saw Cade and Axton.”
“We saw Ross and PeyTon.”
“Ma’at and Detroit.”
“Indiana and Aya.”
They gave us looks like we were crazy, but they knew what we were getting at.
“Lena explained how she killed them, she said it like she was asking for a newspaper: she was crazy and obviously not in a good place,” I explained.
“She said this spell that gave her all of the powers: Autumn, Language, Guns, Elements, Ice, World, Stealth, Truth and her own powers. Lena obviously banged us up, then I summoned our ephinitares and we broke them open,” Tao added.
“Tao, you’re not suppo—”
“She wouldn’t have done it if we stood a chance against Lena. She had a of those powers, and we had none.” I gave Dad a look that made him back down.
“And, we have something.”
Tao and I reached into our bag, receiving the jars and giving them to Brice and the guys.
“Wow. I’ll make sure to keep these safe,” Brice lightly said. He put them on the desk. “So, what else?”
“That was it. And we—” I was cut off by a rushing in my head. I shook it off then tried to continue, “We got the car—” I groaned.
The headache moved further down, and the pains made my pulse race. I rested my elbows on my thighs, using my hands to massage my temples, even though it did no better. It was like someone was driving invisible knives into my spine, neck and an uncomfortable throbbing moved from my temples to my throat. I was sure I was gonna be sick, and I clutched Tao’s hand, but she didn’t grab back because the same excruciating pain was shooting into her body. Her pulse was pounding, her normally cold skin felt like it was bursting into flames, and she was trying to keep a grip on me. The pain made our new powers react, and before I knew it, I had a colorful barrier of energy surrounding my body. Yellow, blue, red, green, purple, orange, white, royal blue, a rusty red, and all of those colors were making the world a distorted blur. A white pain made my entire body shudder—not a comfortable shudder; the one that makes your body feel like a big puzzle and you have to put it together—and I let out a groan that sounded like a dying bear. Looking over, I could barely make out the swirling patterns of colors surrounding Tao’s body. She noticed my gaze then squeezed my and a bit tighter. Pain speared from my spine to my abdomen to my heart… It was like I had been thrust into someone else’s dream and I was being tortured by invisible knives and unseen lethal fists. I screwed my eyes shut, he’d my breath, and concentrated on trying not to cry from the ongoing pain. It felt like someone drove one more knife into my throat, then everything stopped. Seriously. I had my head resting on my knees when someone asked, “Girls, are you alright?”
We took a second to clear our heads. “I’m perfect!” Tao and I said at once.
When we both looked up, their jaws fell off the face of the Earth.
“What did I do?” I asked.
“Is my hair messy?” Tao asked.
Brice waved his hand before our faces, and instantly, a big, floating mirror appeared.
I trailed my fingers down the side of my neck; my filigreed Maxi had expanded!! I lifted my shirt just a little and peered at my stomach: the ink that marked my navel, and wrapped around my hips has made its way up my sides, in an ornate rope of teal ink, the marking had twisted around my shoulder blades, and my neck had the complex lines of knots and complicated swirls that looked like paisleys… oh gosh… Framing my eyebrows was another snake of tangled designs that would have me admiring them forever. It reminded me of two snakes, twirled together and creating a difficult pattern to follow with a Mendhi-looking flower directly in the middle of my skin. The curving and convoluted ink made my teal eyes seem brighter, it all made me. I loved tattoos—or markings in general—and this was absolutely perfect.
When I glanced at Tao, we just stared at each other, observing the ink that covered each other’s skin. We glared back at them and Brice sighed.
“Well, then, you had not said anything about the power extension,” he said.
“Oh! That!” I gasped.
“Ne yazık ki, biz çığlık ve invisible cehenneme tarafından işkence meşgul.”
Tao said. We all glanced at Tao, who was trying to figure out what she had just said.
“So, do you all know what powers you received?” Dallas asked.
When no one was looking, I shot him a wink and I got his dimple to show. He was so perfect, and I had gotten to meet his parents, and what they thought of him. The thing that was still confusing me was when Indiana said “older boy”. He probably just meant that Dallas was changed, and he was no longer the wildcard son, but a strong (not to mention, sexy) Archer who had really matured.
“I have control over Ice, Water, Snow, Language, World, Visions, Guns, Truth and Leadership,” Tao announced.
“I have Spirit, Air, Fire, Earth, Water, Autumn, Stealth, Math and Leadership,” I announced.
“Hmm,” Brice hummed. He grinned at us. “I love the new Maxis; you young women are beautiful.”
“We’ll talk about power control tomorrow morning,” Dad said.
Brice nodded. “You two have been up way too long, and your powers are way too out of control. No school tomorrow, get some rest.”
“Thanks,” Tao and I sighed. We gave weak waves before going off to our dorm and getting some needed sleep.
The next morning, I woke up and took a long shower, then trotted downstairs for some breakfast. None of the girls were home, none of them had seen our Maxis. I opened the fridge, grabbed some cereal and made myself an amazing bowl of Captain Crunch. I was watching Catfish: The Tv Show on the couch when my phone buzzed on my hip. I fished it out of my black joggers and swiped my thumb across the screen, reading Dallas’ text.
Dallas: Hey Avatar. U ok?
Me: I’m fine. Can I come over?
Dallas: No. u should stay home and figure out ur powers. I want u over, but u need to sleep.
Me: Thanks. I’ll call u later, I know ur @ work.
Dallas: Alright. Bye baby.
Me: I love u.
I sat my phone down, and just then, Tao joined me on the couch with an even bigger bowl of cereal.
“Jeesh,” I said as I scooched over.
“I’m hungry. I haven’t eaten since last night,” she huffed, chewing a big bite of Apple Jacks.
When we both finished, I took our bowls to the kitchen then Tao led the way back to our room. I wanted to show her something, and she had something to show me.
“Is it your Maxi?” I asked.
“Yes,” Tao smiled. She slipped off her shirt, and I saw the light blue icicles.
The ones that had started on her shoulder blades had crawled onto her arms, but there weren’t just icicles; there were snowflakes and a swirling pattern like wind and rain. The elaborate curls and pointed lines made its way onto her hands, covering her fingers and wrists like the henna I had designed for her last week. Lastly, the sides of her neck had blue and white and grey snowflakes that floated up to frame her eyebrows, in a winding pattern like a visible breeze.
“Would it be weird to show you my boobs?” Tao giggled.
“Wait, you have them…”
She gradually unhooked her bra, and the small bristles of rain and water lines the top of her mounds, giving her pale skin a glowing blue tint.
“Damn,” I chuckled.
“Your turn,” Tao smiled as she pulled her clothes back on.
I stood from my bed, then pulled off my tank top to show her my torso. I turned around a few times to give Tao an entire few of all of the knotted teal ink. I even lifted my hair so she could see the bit that marked the sides of my neck.
“That’s awesome,” she laughed. “I wonder how much fun Dallas will make of it.”
“Shut up”—I pulled my shirt on and gave her a look as I pulled my hair out of the collar—”I have to show him. And, yours covers your tits!”
“Whatever. So, are you going to see him tonight?”
It was getting kind of chilly in the room, and I had my powers back, so I waved my finger in a circle and the air instantly heated up.
“Nah, he’s at work. And, I need to fix my powers,” I sighed.
“Right. Would it be considered cheating in class? Ya know, I have the Language and Visions, and you have Math.”
“I dunno. But I just need to go to school tomorrow. Hey, I never knew you looked so much like your Dad.”
She snickered. “Me? You’re the spitting image of your Mom. Indiana and Detroit seemed kind of happy that you have their son.”
“Yeah… They told me to love him as hard as I could; he needs it. And I love that I have the job, because it’s an easy job,” I grinned.
“Yeah. You should be happy they didn’t interrogate you about it—” Tao was mid sentence when the bedroom door flew open.
“OH MY GOSH!”
I had never heard Giovanni scream so loud, and she ran over to me and squeezed me in a hug that smushed my boobs into my chest. Her long purple hair was making my nose tingle; it had a faint scent of lavender in it. Ophelia gave Tao a hug, and I couldn’t even comprehend the gazillions of questions they shot at us.
“Guys,” I blurted. “We can tell you all later, but, please, we can’t be overwhelmed with all of that.”
Tao nodded. “It’s okay, we promise to fill you in tomorrow at lunch.”
Ophelia and Giovanni nodded, then waltzed out of the room with big grins on. For the rest of the evening, I only went downstairs twice, and both times was I tersely interrogated by all of my friends, and I even saw a few Dark Daughters discussing my new powers. I went to bed with Boing on my neck, only this time she was nestled into my skin and caressing on my Maxi. I loved her and everything.
On Tuesday, I slept through my first alarm, and it took Tao shaking me awake to get my feet on the floor. She snagged a shower first, so I quickly turned on the water and cleaned myself. When I stepped out, Boing lurched into my wet arms and I had to keep my balance.
“You’re gonna make me late!”
She squealed as I wrapped a towel around my body. I came back to my closet, tossed on my Looney Tunes shirt and a pair of tight skinny jeans. Tao tossed me a pair of Uggs that were sparklier than Kate Middleton’s navy blue ring. I made a confused face, but Tao made a gesture to her watch and hustled out of the doorway.
“Hurry,” she giggled.
I stepped into the boots, then followed her out of the room while I tied my damp hair into a ponytail. I grabbed two sides, pulling the hair down to the middle and pushing my glasses back on my nose (I’m such a nerd). I hated being late because I could never get back on track. As we walked to class, word spread about Lena, so chatter was above average, and when we stepped into History, Nanaya gave me a knowing smile. I’ll admit, it was kind of weird to have so many people staring at my Maxi, and these advanced powers were letting me soar through class.
In Body Science, Sahmi gave Tao a look of praise and I knew he was adoring her blue Maxi.
In Riate, Tao was going crazy because she kept translating to different languages and she couldn’t really focus.
Lunch consisted of Tao and I explaining the whole Lena fiasco to our friends while they relished in all of our words while they alternated between eating pasta.
Art was amazing because Verc had given us a lesson on a Rian artist, and how he used his powers to meet a famous human artist.
I was freaking in Math because I knew all of the answers, but I was getting too fujumbled with all of the numbers. Is my brain like Einstein’s?
That was the first time in a long time that I got to visit my Yard and practice. I was so happy because I had gotten Stealth from Dallas’ Father, and it made my other powers twice as effective. I converted all of the trees to Autumn; the green leaves went to red, orange, yellow and shades of brown. The leaves fell around my body, and I used Fire to create an atmosphere of Autumn day. Air was important to whip all of the leaves into big piles; I used Water to make myself some coffee (Air + Water + Earth + Fire=Espresso); Spirit to calm myself and I was solving Math problems in my head while I stared at what I had created. Nice. The only power I wasn’t using was Leadership, but I could care less about using an evil person’s affinity.
After last hour was over, I had to visit Dallas, so I went back to the dorms for my bag, then headed off to the apartments. I did the Ana from Frozen knock on the door and when Dallas opened, I pulled something out of my bag and sang, “Do you wanna talk over some ice cream?”
He grinned. “Get in here.”
I walked past him, plopped down on the couch and Dallas went to get our bowls. He sat on the floor with his legs tucked under his body and I sat on the couch with the bowl in between my folded legs.
“So, spill. I wanna know everything about the last few nights,” Dallas sighed.
I took a big scoop then shoved it into my face and used my finger to straighten my nerdy glasses. I just wanted good eyesight.
“Well,” I said as I swallowed the last of it, “I dislocated my arm, but, don’t worry, Bull healed me! Anywho, Lena was just crazy; she had our parents and Aya ‘alive’ and she explained that she was using them as stand-ins for rituals. Her husband, Axton, was there, and Brice’s late wife, Ma’at was, too. She said this crazy spell that gave her all of the powers, and her hair went like, twelve colors and her eyes completely darkened over. She slammed me into this pile of broken glass, and she ripped my favorite pair of jeans! I almost dropped eighty feet out of a window, and she garroted me until I felt like I was dying. But, Tao summoned those cool boxes, then this strong air like a tornado was coming blew through the entire building, and Lena just—” I threw my hands up and make a “poof!” sound.
Dallas blinked his eyes to a deep indigo color.
“Well that sucks,” he muttered.
I hugged him around his neck and kissed the tattoo behind his ear.
“I saw your Dad,” I whispered. “And your Mom.”
He was silent for a second.
“It’s better you than me,” Dallas grumbled.
“And no, it is not better me than you. They told me to love you as hard as I possibly could. .”
I nuzzled his neck and Dallas kissed my Maxi.
“You’ve already proven that you can do that,” he whispered to me, completely ignoring the first part of what I said.
“I’m gonna love you harder,” I whispered back, softly planting my lips atop his.
He broke the kiss for a second, brought me into his lap, moved our ice cream then continued kissing me. Dallas trailed his fingers over the ink on my neck, touching and caressing me in the way only he knew how to. I dug my fingers deeper into his scalp, and whispered on his lips, “I want you.”
Dallas kisses me longer. “I want you, too.” He pushed himself to his feet, keeping my legs wrapped around his waist.
We made it to the bedroom, and by time I had my hands in his pants, Dallas was wrestling my shirt off. I tugged on his canvas belt but Dallas pulled away.
“Baby,” I pouted.
“I want to see it,” he replied. “Please.”
I nodded and Dallas unhooked my bra. He slipped my jeans and panties off, then gently laid me down on the mattress. Dallas started from my hips, tracing the ink he had always seen, then moved around my midriff, to the mark he had never seen before. He reached my neck, but I said, “I want to show all of it.”
He let me stand up, and I pushed my hair over my shoulder so he could see my filigreed backside. While I was in the shower, I realized that some of the ink crawled onto the curve of my ass, and I could feel Dallas softly touching my skin there. He caressed my shoulder blades then traced the ink of my neck and up to my temples. He held me around my waist, his body pressed into me from behind while he whispered, “You’re beautiful.”
“You like it?” I inanely asked.
“Of course I do. I just wish that it was in more places.” I knew where he meant because Dallas moved one hand to cup my pussy. I turned my body, so my widespread palm was flat on his chest and my face was to his. Dallas gave me a soft kiss that had me begging for more, and I pushed him back into the bed.
I straddled his body, with his hands on my ass and mine in his hair. Dallas gave me another tongue-filled kiss, exploring my warm recess while our hips grinded away and his hard-on forced against the fabric of his jeans. I reached between us, lifting his black tee shirt off of his torso. Something was different about him… I couldn’t really pick it out… but it was there.
“Here.” Dallas grabbed my wrist and rested my hand on his hip.
His Maxi had started to crawl around his vee line and almost reached the dip of his abs. The dark blue ink was forming into a pattern similar to celtic knots, just hundreds and hundreds of links and chains that were becoming a beautiful piece of artwork on his skin.
I bit my lip. “What did you do?” I breathed.
“I have no idea. It started last night when I was sleeping. I woke up with this shitty feel running through my stomach,” he whispered. His hand slid into my hair and I kissed his wrist.
I kissed his chest, making sure to flick my tongue over his nipple and move my way further down. Dallas helped me slide his jeans down, and he sat up a bit to watch me. I loved that he usually went commando. As more of his skin was visible to me, I kissed the ink and Dallas snickered a bit. I crouched between his legs, looking into those blazing blue eyes while I ran my finger over the clit of his hard cock.
“Ya know,” I whispered, “it may be because you let go.”
“What?” Dallas huffed. He was getting distracted by my fingers wrapping around his taut skin.
“You let go. We all did. Maybe now you can breathe again because you know your parents are safe, and nothing bad is happening to them anymore. Even though, none of us had any idea that was possible. And there is one less evil person walking around campus.” I massaged his balls in one hand, making Dallas sigh but answer me:
“Yeah, that’s probably it. Or maybe I feel safer because you’re doing…” He sighed when I wrapped my lips around the head. “Because you’re doing that.”
My hand slowly followed my mouth, and I made sure to swirl my tongue around the thick tip when I came back up. I licked the entire base to make Dallas groan, and he gently cupped my neck and said, “Stop.” He forced his cock out of my mouth, and I made a fake pout as he put me on my back.
“Dallas, you know I”—he spread my legs and licked at my soaking cleft. “Ohhhhhhh godddd.”
His soft laugh on my aching flesh made me louder, and I spread a little bit wider to watch him play. Dallas met my eyes as he trapped my clit between his teeth and sucked—hard. I moaned his name, and Dallas flicked his tongue at my pink labia. He kissed me again then breathed on my skin, “Sometimes I need you to take care of me, but I always have to take care of you.”
“Why?” I stupidly asked, but I was in LaLaLand as he ate my soaking folds.
Dallas licked the crease of my thigh and pussy.
“Because. I’ve never been with someone for so long,” he whispered in me.
“And… You were my first.”
“Exactly. I don’t want to hurt you, but I don’t want to baby you. I just, need to take care of you.”
He kissed my thigh once more before crawling on top of me and slowly pushing his cock into my tight hole. I gasped and Dallas held my hand back in the sheets.
I softly kissed his lips. “I’ve got you, Rebel. I want you to take care of me, and I want to take care of you twice as much.”
“I know you do, but, God, Eris, the first time I ever touched you, the first gasp I heard from that perfect mouth, the way it felt, I just knew I wanted more of you and that perfect skin. I knew I wanted all of you, I knew you’d make me feel like something I sure as hell wasn’t.”
I was stunned. That skilled mouth of his just poured his sweet heart out, and I was about ready to give myself to him, though I had already done that. Dallas nestled himself deeper inside of me, and I tossed my head back and moaned his name. He claimed my lips and at the same time, it felt as if he claimed my body and soul. Dallas bent his head down to my chest, taking my right nipple into his mouth and suckling me as our bodies rocked together. He freed my wrists but I just held his hair and said, “Dallas, you’re gonna make me fucking cry…” He laughed a bit as he dragged wet kisses across my chest and treated my other breast to the same treatment he had lavished on the first one. I flipped him onto his back and kissed his neck. Dallas kissed higher to my throat, making me throw my head back and let him tease my skin. His cock was wildly pummeling inside of me, all while he gave me soft, loving kisses, even though it was the complete opposite of what we both wanted, but it was what we needed.
“And Dallas?” He kissed my lips and I looked into his bright hazel eyes. They blinked dark green. “I don’t want this any different.”
“What do you mean?” Dallas trailed the flat of his thumb over the blue studs in my ear.
“You, this, us, everything. I love everything about you, and whatever you said you felt like, it wasn’t different. Maybe you’re better when you’re bad. Maybe you had never seen yourself for your true self. Maybe, I don’t know.”
Dallas gently nodded and whispered, “Maybe. But, can you show me if I can feel it again?”
We shared a naughty smile and I wrapped my arms around his shoulders. As I slowly rocked my hips and moaned something dirty, Dallas ran his fingers down my sides, and circled his thumb on my leg. He placed his palms on my stomach then moved higher up until he was cupping my neck and I closed my eyes. I loved him more than anything and if it meant I had to tame a wild horse, I would do it in a heartbeat. After all, Dallas was sort of my wild horse (not the fact that I was riding him like one). Dallas supported me more than anyone, and he may be a bit of a wildcard, but he was my wildcard that was crazy and loved every inch of my body. It didn’t matter if he said he felt like something he wasn’t because, Dallas was everything ranging from sweet, asshole, wild, intelligent, to mine. All those things he says about me, I care because I know Dallas, and he was anything but a liar. He had the biggest heart, full of crazy and love, and it was mine. He claimed my heart, so, I claimed his. If only he got to see his Mom… Detroit was so vivacious, and even for a nonliving woman, she obviously loved her son like he was one in a million—which he was.
Dallas stroked his cock deeper into my hole, and I gasped when he pushed a good measure into my cervix. I closed my eyes and glided our skin together in a soft, wild, and loving way until I could feel my orgasm creeping into my body, and I clawed at his chest and neck while Dallas thrust harder. I bit down on his neck and dug my fingers into his lower back, and Dallas locked his fingers into the skin of my hips. He locked his hand in my hair, pulling me down in to a kiss that had me on the verge of screaming.
I gasped his name and pulled back when I felt the juices and cum leaking out of my body.
“Ohhhhhhh! Dallas!” I cried.
To keep me from screaming my face off, Dallas placed his lips atop mine, then slammed his hips into mine so hard that I felt my second orgasm rolling around. I came for the second time and, I could feel heat between us—not that I wasn’t already feeling it—but it was like the type of heat that made you hungry for more. I sat straight up, and I wanted Dallas to cum, so I reached between our bodies and wildy rubbed my clit in circles while his cock sawed my soaking wet sex apart. So, my plan didn’t make Dallas come again, it made me cum again.
Dallas let out a curse, then sat up and took my nipple into his mouth. I gasped when he smacked my ass, and I let out a low growl when he used his teeth to gently tug on my breast. Dallas came back to my mouth, using his wicked tongue to devour my lips. He was getting closer and closer, and he must’ve needed more encouragement, so, I broke the kiss and snaked my arms around his neck.
“Baby, cum. I want you to cum,” I moaned.
Dallas dropped his head to the crook of my neck and murmured something I couldn’t quite get. I gasped a little bit when he lifted me into the air and slammed me into the wall across the room. God, there was nothing better than “I missed you” sex. Dallas tucked my legs back, so I had no choice but to scream his name and take his fucking. He slammed into my tightness, making my body shake and our hollering get louder. Dallas barked my name, and I felt that skin break. I came for the fourth time, and Dallas finally had his orgasm. We were still going as he spewed his seed into me, and I dug my nails into his spine while Dallas panted my name and released the last of his climax. The last of his warm seed oozed into me and I met his deep blue eyes with a weary smile. Dallas gave my lips a gentle kiss.
“I told you, he panted.
“Told me what?” I asked but I was about to fall asleep.
“That I’d take care of you.”
He carried me off to the bed, and I sank into the warm mattress while I caught my breath and came back to reality. The bed dipped behind me, and Dallas draped the covers back on our sweaty bodies. I turned around, draped my right leg over his left, rested my head on his chest and wrapped one arm on the other side of his neck. We laid in bed, just panting and thinking of our amazing accomplishment. I was drifting in and out when I felt him kiss the crown of my head and whisper, “I’ve got you.”
I rubbed his pec and slightly nodded, I was out in two seconds, cuddled up to my big Dallas who knew how to take care of me.
I twisted a little to the side so whatever would get off of me. Something wet was on my thighs… Something was blowing on my sex and making me heat up. I slowly opened my eyes to see Dallas between my legs, his tongue slashing away at my skin and his lustful eyes locked on mine, and a sandy eyebrow winged up at me. I saw his ears rise a bit so I knew he was smiling as I woke up and starting moaning. I arched my hips upward, and the small laugh Dallas made had my aching flesh convulsing and begging for more. He already had on his jeans, and his hair was a bit damp, so I knew Dallas had been up long enough to get ready for work, but he wanted some breakfast in bed.
“Dallas… We’re gonna be late… “
He sucked my clit even harder; he was making me shut up. In addition to the fun, Dallas inched his middle finger into my hole and his name was on my lips like a song. He began kissing his way toward my navel; his eyes were the kind of green that mint ice cream gets jealous of. The kind of green that distracts you from everything around. And when the right iris flashed a shade of deep magenta, I sucked in a sharp breath and arched my back off of the soft sheets and forced his wicked touch on my loose and wet skin closer. I ran a few fingertips in the silvery strands of his thick hair and Dallas used his tongue to wildly circle inside of my hot hole, which made that skin break. Dallas made me cum so hard that I was grasping at the sheets and yelling his name like a mad woman. He kissed my pussy once more then patted my thigh and stood up.
“Get ready for school,” Dallas said as he turned around to his closet.
I checked the time: 5:38am, so Dallas had to be on a mission to get me off. I usually had my alarm set for 6am, since school started at 7:15.
I took a warm shower and pulled on a pair of dark shorts, the ones with the big sailor buttons and I tucked a white button-up into the waistband. I dried my hair then threw it behind my shoulders in its regular waves, put in my contacts and went back out to find Dallas. He was in the kitchen, taking medicine and reaching into the fridge for some water. I swatted his perfect butt.
“Eris,” he growled as he closed the door. “It is mine, so leave it to me.”
I snapped my teeth at him and Dallas rolled his brownish-orange eyes. I turned around to reach into the cabinet for a plate, and I felt large hands on my ass.
“This is mine, too,” Dallas laughed. He grabbed the dish for me while saying, “Can you make me breakfast?”
“You already ate,” I grumbled.
He laughed. “Touché.”
I flashed him a sweet smile then started our breakfast. Dallas ended up stealing me from eating my food and making out with me on the dining room table, and I was scared I’d be late.
Dallas made it clear that he was on a mission because he effortlessly unsnapped every one of my shirt buttons then unclasped my bra and let my breasts spill out. I opened my mouth to protest but Dallas locked his soft lips with mine and shoved his tongue into my warm recess. His blue eyes shot open when I reached down, clutched his hard-on and said, “I have a test in Math!”
“That’s your last hour. C’mon, quickie” he laughed.
“No! We have no time.” I pushed him off then fixed myself, making sure to flip Dallas off as we exited the door. Trust me, if it was any other day, I’d have him naked and fucking his brains out, but, I did actually have a test.
School flew by, and the entire day consisted of Professors and students telling me what they thought of my Maxi and asking about what happened with Lena. Campus was still buzzing and more rumors had spread about Lena.
They’d say: I heard Lena was pregnant so she converted to being evil.
They’d say: She killed all of the Professors she didn’t like over ten years ago.
They’d say: I knew she had a vendetta against Tao and Eris’ families.
They’d say: At least the Crazy Bitch Monster is off of our tails.
I agreed with most of the rational rumors, but then again, it was bad to believe shit like that because… it’s high school: rumors spread like fire in a gas station. I was walking back from Affinity Hour when I got a text on my phone.
Tao: Hey! SN10.
SN10 meant Studying in 10 minutes.
So, I redirected toward Ria. 57 and met Tao in the little annulus of bookshelves in the back of the library. I hadn’t been back there in forever so I guess it was good to be back to my old ways as my life was turned on its side. She probably had hundreds of papers around her, with ten gigantic books in front of her and spread around the floor. She glanced up then perkily smiled.
“Hey! Don’t think I’m crazy or anything, but I’m doing affinity studies! Ours to be specific!”
“Cool. Which one is which?” I asked as I crouched down and picked up a dusty tome.
“That one is Math. I’m reading about Language and World colliding, and it doesn’t sound all that bad.”
I scanned through the pages and gasped.
“I can answer Math questions in different languages and technology!”
“And I could help you translate the language,” Tao giggled. “Here: it reads that I could tell you the exact location of any place in the world.”
“Where’s South Korea?” I asked.
Tao thought for a second. “37.5500 degrees North, 126.9667 degrees East. Would you like to know how warm or cold it is in North Korea?”
“No, but if you find the square root of both those numbers, you get 6.12780547994 degrees North, and 11.2679501241 degrees East.”
She gave me a look. “If only I had Math,” Tao sneered.
“You have Guns… That is not one bit safe,” I giggled.
“Trust me, when Ba (I’m pretty sure it was Chinese for Dad) had the power for Guns, he used to take me shooting. Mom kind of hated it, ya know, since she’s all about Kids and keeping them safe.” Tao rolled her eyes and opened her World book again.
I grabbed the Truth book, and it took me a while to comprehend the fact that Tao could tell nothing but the truth. What if she was in a really bad position and needed an excuse to leave? What if it was a trick question and technically, she would be lying if she said the wrong answer, right? Eh. We had been reading and talking about our strengths for about an hour when we were interrupted by a very ignorant person.
“Tao. We have to talk.”
Her glassy blue eyes lifted and her perky expression had gone disgruntled when she noticed who it was.
“No, Maz-hole. You are supposed to be with your ‘new piece of ass’ and I’m supposed to be studying with my best friend. Leave,” she smiled.
He grunted then looked over his shoulder before glancing back at us. “Look, everyone knows about the Lena shit, so, won’t you guys want to talk with someone? And, hell, I’d be the only person there for you. Plus, that chick, Farrah, she was just a one-night, and, Tao, I know you’re a freak in the sheets.”
In the blink of an eye, Tao was on her feet, rushing over to Maz and had her hand wrapped around his throat. Though her hand was pretty small and Maz was damn sizeable, she had a good grip on his punk-ass, and I was leaning on the bookshelf watching.
“Wrong,” I interjected. “Tao has plenty of friends, and, speaking for the both of us, I’m pretty sure you are not worth her time anymore. Since you want to go on and sleep with a Sio instead of take care of your girlfriend and make her happy, you Maz Leo, can kiss every piece of ass you see. You wanna know why? Because Tao is much more important than a crappy bitch who has zero power compared to her. And, if you haven’t realized, Tao’s the one with her hand around your neck, and, I’m sure it’s taking all of her willpower not to kill you. So, scamper along so the big kids can play.”
She released his skin, and Maz raced out of the library.
Tao grinned, and we both broke out into a fit of laughter. By time we were calm, Zara was peeking her head into the the circle of bookshelves, obviously about to chew our asses out for being too loud.
“What did you do to that boy?” Zara solemnly asked.
“I… gave him a hug,” Tao chuckled. “Don’t worry, Zara, if I wanted to kill him, which I do want to, I’d save it for a more private time.”
“I never really liked Maz, ya know. He always had the pseudo-boyfriend vibe, and, he’s kind of a bitch. He must not know who he’s dealing with, because he may’ve pissed himself.” Zara shook her head and walked off, and we broke out laughing again.
Tao calmed down then said, “Let’s ask Zara if we can take these back to the dorms.”
I nodded and scooped up the gigantic texts. Since I already had my Element books on my bookshelf at the dorms, Tao and I grabbed the remaining affinities and marched off to the front desk. Fingers clacking and clicking on the keyboard, Zara directed her gaze on us and said, “You two look stunning with those Maxis. And, these powers suit you perfectly. Tao, Eris, you two have just been given 13 Raxquers to study and research while you’re developing these new powers. Have fun, ladies.”
Tao grabbed 6 books, I grabbed 7 and we saluted Zara as we left the glass doors and headed back to the dorms. When we reached the courtyard in front of both the Girls’ and Boys’ dorms, some of our friends waved, and a Dark Daughter held the door open for us (surprising since the Daughters are egocentric bitches). Tao slammed her books down on the desk, and I had the job of shoving them all into the cherry wood bookcase on the eastern wall of our room. As I was putting the books into alphabetical order and making sure the dusty spines were facing outward , Boing hopped into my arms and I almost dropped her because she was completely muddy. Not but a second later, Mikey and Mumble trudged in, twice as muddy and looking all bubbly and proud of the mess they were creating.
“How in the hell did you guys get out there?” I laughed.
“Oh, gross,” Tao grimaced as Mumble shook his body and sent mud flying everywhere.
“Well… Looks like it’s bath time…”
“You have your powers, DooDoo.” Tao rolled her eyes and I flipped her off then called Water to clean them up.
Tao ran to the bathroom and grabbed a bottle of shampoo, then carefully spewed a generous amount of the liquid onto their bodies and made them foam up. It was actually hilarious to watch the water clean them, and to see Mikey’s disgruntled face while the automatic water to wash their bodies like real people were doing it. Mumble started honking and dancing (literally like Mumble from Happy Feet) when Tao froze his water and let little snow flurries fall around his body. Mikey started chasing his tail in circles when I cued some breeze; Boing was hopping around after the falling leaves that appeared from nowhere. They were so cute that I had to snap a few pictures on my cellphone. It was already 9:52, so I told Tao that I was gonna hop in the shower before I got to bed.
Midway through my shower, the bathroom door opened and Tao froze my water, making me scream and jump out to the cold air and search for my towel.
“Tao! Don’t do that!”
She broke out into laughter as she slipped off her top and I exited the bathroom. So much for a nice shower and relaxation. I got dressed in a pair of track shorts and snapped on a plain purple bra then seized the fluffy Boing who was scurrying around my bedspread. Tao came back into the room, her long blue hair cold and frosty from the freezing shower she just took.
“How’d the shower go?” she smiled.
“Bullshit,” I growled.
“Mine was amazing.”
Tao whipped around the other direction and went to her closet, getting dressed in a big tee shirt and pulling her hair back with a sparkly clip. We both laid down, sharing a smile before shutting out the lamps and getting some shut eye before Friday.
Four weeks after the whole showdown with Lena and our power extensions, Tao had woken me up on a Saturday morning at 6am. She jumped on the bed, but I yanked the covers over my head and hit her with a pillow.
“It’s not Monday,” I sleepily whined.
“Dude! Tessa is making breakfast!” Tao cheered.
I sprang out of bed, ran to the bathroom and brushed my teeth, then came back out to Tao. She was casually sitting on the bed with her nose deep in her phone screen.
“What are you doing?! Tessa made breakfast!” I exclaimed.
Tao looked up with a blank stare.
“Tessa didn’t cook. I just want you to get up,” she sighed.
My mouth dropped open and my eyebrows shot up to my hairline.
“You asshole! I was dreaming about food, what the fuck! Plus, you can’t even lie because you can’t tell anything but the truth! Buttmucher. I’M GOING TO SLEEP. Goodnight or good morning, whatever!”
I ran back to the bed, but Tao tackled me and we ended up rolling onto the floor. She shoved a pillow on my face.
“No! I’m going to bed!” My voice was muffled but I wouldn’t go down without putting up a fight.
“I’ll make you breakfast, just don’t go to sleep!” Tao growled.
I got her with another pillow, then darted out of the bedroom and downstairs to the kitchen. No one but five other girls were up, so I ran to the kitchen and poured myself a bowl of cereal since Tessa hadn’t cooked breakfast. Tao came down right after me, smacked my butt then poured herself some cereal.
“You’re an ass,” I said through a mouthful of Count Chocula.
“I know,” she responded with a mouth of Cheerios.
I had been super hungry lately (I swear it was the new powers because I started eating my food super hot, I loved anything whole grain and I was just eating like the fucking Cookie Monster), so I managed to eat two full bowls, and I even stole down of Tao’s on my way to the bonus room. Tao followed me down the hall, and we grabbed a soccer ball, then dribbled back and forth for a while until the other girls woke up and poured downstairs. Giovanni and Ophelia joined our game of 20 seconds, and I ended up getting out in the first round.
“Hey! Eris, do you have some pink nail polish?” Ophelia asked as she twirled around Tao’s Iceball.
“Nah. I only keep four colors: red, black, white and teal. Sucks to suck, honey,” I giggled. “18… 19… 20! Gi, you’re out.”
She started murmuring and signing curse words to Tao since she hit her with a Waterball as I joined the game. I was preparing to throw a ball of leaves when a strong hand caught my wrist. I turned around, seeing Xi and Karder towering over me like mountains.
“Hi,” I emitted to Karder.
He grinned a bright smile. “Hey. Tao”—his dark red eyes drew to her—“we’re going somewhere.”
Karder loosened his steel-like grip, and I gave he and his brother a weird glare before Tao looped her arm through mine from behind. Tao and I ran upstairs to get dressed, since they said we were going somewhere. I pulled on a pair of red jeans and my Germany soccer jersey, then stepped into my laced boots. Tao hopped down the stairs, and I followed pursue by skipping every three steps. Xi and Karder let us walk first then led us down toward the other end of campus.
“May we ask where we are going?” Tao asked.
“The mansion,” Karder answered.
I whipped around, looked into his dark red eyes and asked, “What did you say? The mansion?!”
He nodded. “Why? Is that a problem for Ms. Eris?”
“I mean, no! But, the mansion?! Since when do we go to the mansion?”
The mansion (Ria. 151) was like the Castle or the Heart of Rianate. The High Rian or High Priestess or High Priest stayed there during their “time in office”. Campus was probably 20-40 miles at the most (not including Ria. 200) and from the Dorms to the mansion, it was probably a good 10 miles. The mansion was within 6 miles from any other building, so it would be a fair walk to get there. Well, not anymore. Xi used the power Tao had used on me the first day we met: it was called obvuert, and it was the power that felt like I jumped in pool then I ended up in any destination.That destination today was the yard of the mansion. Only the yard was a good 20 acres and counting. Xi and Karder opened the large steel gates that reminded me of a Castle would have, and that was when it all hit me. Through the tons and tons of oaks and pines, I could make out an expansive building with enough land to make Barack Obama jealous. (Maybe, maybe not. We never know if he’s a jealous type of person.) There was probably a mile of a dirt road, covered in gravel and stones and a bit tricky to walk on in narrow shoes. I was right: that road was probably a mile long before I actually saw it. The uneven gravel started to straighten out until it was complete flat stone drive. It was actually beautiful, with the kind of “hey, royalty lives here” vibe. But that was the least important thing. Yeah, the ground was nice, but… The mansion!
It was the type of structure that took a while to comprehend and understand before you actually got the gist of the architecture and design. The cobblestone facade gave the structure that Castle-Royalty look, but the amount of wildlife and nature surrounding it was amazing. I’m thinking somewhere along the line of Oprah Winfrey’s mansion, the big steps and staircase, the awesome colors that were so neutral that they were so beautiful. There was the faint sound of drippling water, so there had to be a pool in the backyard, but there was also a grand water fountain in the front yard, encircled by trimmed hedges and colorful flowers and it was placed directly into a small patch of grass that was in the center of a circled driveway. The dark grey roofing reached into the peach-colored sky for days, and I was pretty sure I spotted a wild deer grazing the astonishing landscaping. There was a few hundred yards before we were standing in front of another Royal gate, and Xi said a few Riate words to make the doors swing open, welcoming us to the grounds of a High Priest. Damn. My eyes scanned over the front yard, the wildlife, the landscaping and the high-end edifice, that had an amazing amount of windows, doors and ancient stone, plus, there were a few balconies that curled out from the top floor. This place was amazing. Xi and Karder traipsed up the the semicircle steps, leading Tao and I to a landing with great glass doors. Double doors that were covered in a beautiful translucent pattern that didn’t give me a clear look until now. The person to answer the door was a woman, probably no older than 30 with a very pretty smile. Her long blonde hair faded into a peach color, than a hot pink and all the way to a boysenberry purple. Nice.
“Hello, Capri. How are you?” Karder asked.
“I’m fine, honey,” she grinned back. That was Karder’s girlfriend or wife. “Hi, ladies! Welcome to the mansion where Brice doesn’t wake up until noon. Come in.”
We stepped into the front foyer, and all I could do was slowly twirl in circles, with my head tilted back so I could take in the three crystal chandeliers hanging over our heads. The front foyer had two grand staircases on the wall across from the door, with other doorways on every which way, leading to more luxury and greatness. The flooring was an elaborate terrazzo that had me crouching down and staring at the blue, yellow and scattered colors of stone. Brice had been descending the left staircase, holding onto the intricate iron baluster as he smiled and said, “Hello, girls. How are you?”
“Great,” Tao grinned back.
“Thank you, sons. I think I have them from here.” Brice smiled at Xi and Karder, sending them on their way to wherever they stayed in the fabulous home. Karder darted back to the front foyer, seized Capri’s arm and they ran off down another hall; I guess that was his wife because she had a gigantic rock on her left hand.
Brice smiled again. “Well, I am glad you two did not refuse the offer to come and visit,” he warmly said.
“And, may we ask why we’re here?” I questioned with a winged eyebrow.
“Proceed after me.” Brice led us down another hall, to what was a quiet room then gestured for us to have a seat. I scoochied into a vintage Victorian armchair, remembering to stroke the fabric and mouth to Tao, “Silk.” She nodded then stroked her own sofa, getting the same result and we shared a rueful grin. We turned our attention back to Brice, who was communicating in Riate with a woman over his shoulder. She exited the room, leaving back into the millions of hallways. He gave us a comforting smile that had my cheeks hurting because I just had to return it.
“So,” Brice sighed as he sat back and crossed one leg over the other and draped one arm along the ends of the sofa, “you both have been alerted about the Full Moon Ritual, tonight, correct?”
I bobbed my head and Tao smiled her acknowledgement.
“Good. Every Rian on campus shall attend, even the Warriors who have been available for this occasion. But, it has been brought to my attention by your parents that you two have learned Power Control in the last few weeks.”
As Tao and I answered, the woman came back, with a tray of an antique coffee set, coffee and tea steaming and sugar and cream available. She gently placed the glass tray on the coffee table between the four sofas and two chairs while saying, “uživati,” with a toothy smile. Her hair was cut just at her shoulders, in a dark pink shade and her eyes a flamingo pink that made her bright smile more comforting. I smiled back and the woman went off to do her job—she must’ve been a worker at the mansion because Brice never made people do things for him.
“That was Croatian for enjoy,” Tao translated for us.
“Thank you, Goddess. Oh, excuse me, why don’t I introduce the yrfuds(maids or housekeeper) that keep the mansion in tip-top shape.” Brice did a mental calling, and before I could even blink again, five women were standing in the room, with bright smiles and very amazing hair colors.
“Hello, girls, I am Venus, but, most people call me Planet.” The woman who had just served our tea was standing before us.
“I am Capri, also Karder’s wife.” The woman with the pink/purple/peach hair waved before running back to her husband.
“I am Ammyanna, the woman around here who cleans up after the haphazard Brice.” A woman with red, orange, black, and yellow hair, light brown eyes, an eyebrow piercing and a nose hoop winked at us. I could tell she was no older than 20, and she was quite beautiful.
“I am Adrianna, the second Triplet and the woman of Mechanical Repair.” Her identical twin sister had dark mulberry hair and the same light brown eyes had a lip ring, and a nose ring running between her nostrils.
“I am Alysanna, the woman who does laundry all day.” The youngest sister had turquoise hair (NOTE: teal and turquoise are very similar, not the same) and dimple piercings waved, her light brown eyes sparkling at us.
The last woman had a basket of apples tucked to her hip. With sky blue hair, there was a single streak of red running through the front bang and her eyes were dark blue, with two rings of red. “Hello, I’m Lezley but everyone calls me Spice because I’m always planting and I like food really spicy. Nice to meet you ladies.”
The women all dispersed, leaving a chuckling Brice to glare at us.
“Over the span of one month, I have not had enough time to sit down with you young women and explain my sister. I advise you not to sip your coffee as I say this: Lena converted to evil because she had a miscarriage over 15 years ago. She and her husband, Axton, had been trying to have a baby for months, and when she found out she was with child, Lena became something she wasn’t, and that resulted in the child never to be born. Now, there have been lots of… prophecies and rumors spreading around campus, but, so far, none of them have been one bit close to the truth. I never knew that she was the one to extinguish those innocent Rians in one year, but there had been an outbreak of an ancient potion that year… So, I was just thinking that those people drank something at the wrong time. There is a form of Black Magick Lena previously used as an adolescent, but it was something harmless and immature. When my sister met the love of her life, she supposed that she could just leave campus, but… it just so happened that my parents and Axton’s parents had set a strict rule to keep us here. I met Ma’at in preschool, I shared my crayons with her, and we became the best of friends until our relationship strengthened in our Rio year. We got married at the age of 22, had a baby girl named Blysse, and she ended up leaving campus by time she turned 23. Xi and Karder came along when Blysse was 5, so, she loved having younger brothers to baby and take care of. I should have listened to her when she was 13, Blysse had told me that she caught Lena in the middle of a Dark Circle, but, it was my own sister, so I went with my gut and told my daughter she may have just made an erroneous assumption. When Xi and Karder reached the age of 15, they became handsome young men, with young girls throwing themselves at them for numerous reasons. Then… they turned 16… and that was the first time I noticed Xi being a bit abnormal. He had a Dark Potion, which was not prohibited in the mansion. He said he was breaking the vial because he found it on the yard, but the next day, I saw Karder hiding the same vial in his coat pocket. Lena had cast a spell over my own sons, just to perform all of these cruel actions that helped no one, not even herself!”
His hand glided over the fuzzy crisps of his beard, this was Brice’s method when he was trapped in deep thought.
“Brice,” I sighed. His dark eyes held mine. “Lena told us about your childhood, and how she was kind of the wildchild, while you were the smarty-goody-goody—not that you’re a goody-goody or anything—and, it sounded insane. Like desperation.”
“When Axton was there, he had this dark shadow in his eyes… It would be clear to anyone that he was hurting from the actions of his wife. And it wasn’t fair how she just… used everyone to upraise herself,” Tao added.
“A power is for a distinct person, and the fact that Lena has used numerous powers for just evil, it makes all of those good memories of her float away. When I first came to Rianate, I saw Lena as a mother, as the type of female protector that I needed in my life. But, as she got to grow on me, and as I began to see her darker side, I did not want this to be the case. I would never expect for Lena to choose darkness over light, and I would never expect you to be so calm about this.”
Brice snickered a little. “Girls, darkness does not always balance to light; as one can never find complete light in light, it is impossible to see all dark in dark. Lena was more dark than anything, but, I knew that a bit of her soul wanted it, wanted to be good. It’s one of those things we all have to accept, something that will blow over for others and I will spend the rest of my days pondering over my sister. Flesh and blood, soul and body, mind and thoughts.” His dark expression lightened when Tao raised her mug and made an air-toast. We finished our drinks in relative silence, just Tao and I spitting out questions about the mansion.
It was already nearing 6pm, so Brice raised to his feet and gave us the biggest grin I had ever seen on his handsome face.
“Ladies,” he announced. “It is time to meet them.”
During the few hours we had been over, Brice had been explaining to us that there were a few people we had to meet, and we were eating dinner together in the West Dining Hall. I pushed my seat out a little bit when two gorgeous creatures entered the Hall. The woman with ivory skin had shoulder-length hair, the color of a bright red apple, and the small spots of a leopard in a dark orange. Her hair was awesome. She had high cheekbones, with a pretty busty chest, a bright smile that lit up the room and a sweet voice.
“Hi, girls, I’m Ixchel,” she grinned.
“Hi.” Tao and I shook her hand then moved on to the next woman.
She was fairly tall, mocha-colored skin and dark brown hair with tips of red and black. She had a tiny blue Monroe piercing in her lip, and those lips were the lips of a Goddess. She had bright blue eyes that contrasted her skin tone beautifully and a cute button nose.
“Merry meet, I am Ksenia.” She shook our hands and we grinned.
“Alright, Brice. Well, it was nice hanging out today, but, we have to go and dress for the Full Moon Ritual,” Tao beamed.
“We’ll see you tonight,” I added.
Tao and I had already stepped through the doorway and back into the hall, but Brice’s grey and royal blue facial hair was in our direction. He stroked his chin, which he loved doing a lot, then said, “Ixchel and Ksenia are dressing you tonight.”
“Brice, we have black dresses at home,” I snickered. On a Full Moon Ritual, everyone had to be dressed in black—it was a Greek thing for the nighttime Rituals.
He made a “tsk! tsk!” sound as he shook his head and gave us an amused look.
“You’re being Crowned tonight,” Brice abruptly answered.
I couldn’t move, think, or hear. Crowned?! That meant he was retiring as High Priest/ High Rian and passing the role onto us! I’m only 18! Tao just turned 18! How in the fuck are two teenagers gonna pull that off?! Tao took a step closer to Brice, putting her hand on his forehead and saying, “Are you doing okay?”
He laughed. “I’m serious. You two have so many things others don’t have: one, nine powers and advanced Maxis. Two, maturity and prosperity, which is an important part of being a High Priestess. Three, faith. You never doubt yourself or anything, no matter how bad things might be. So, I want you two to have the privilege of being High Rian.”
That was some reasoning. But, I was in no place to be High Rian, let alone gain control over an entire campus! Most of my adult powers developed when I turned 19 to 20, and I had a little while before that was scheduled to come my way.
“Girls, I have won this meeting.” Brice grinned. “Ixchel has an affinity for True Sight and she can turn anything or anyone into Goddess material. Ksenia is Cosmetics, so, I’m pretty sure she’ll have you two ready for the Crowning. Be on time.”
Brice departed down a different hall, and Ksenia & Ixchel marched us to a bedroom, large and vintage, with Victorian furniture and antiques that I figured not to touch. Ixchel stole me to the bedroom, asked me to strip off my clothes and call Water. Okay, I dunno about being naked in front of other people, but, she was a girl: same parts, same thing. I called Water, and my hair became soaked, my body was dripping wet, I was kind of chilly and Ixchel smiled.
I dried my body. She stole me in front of the mirror, staring my hair and taking small moments to trace the ink on my neck.
“So,” Ixchel smiled in the mirror, “how do you feel? I know, I know, Brice is terse with these types of events, but, you’re gonna be a High Priestess! And a High Rian!”
“Don’t mention it,” I grumbled as she flat ironed my long teal tresses.
“Oh, you should be happy! You two will be the youngest High Rian ever documented, ya know. And you’re the first Rio with a power extension like this. The first Rians to have more than one main power, and the firsts to have to take down an evil Priestess. Hell, you were the first with FIVE.”
“That’s a lot of firsts.” Ixchel giggled while she slid a thin strand of hair through the “Heated Tongs”, as I liked to call them. One she finished straightening I was amazed. I’d never had my hair so straight and perfect, and it even made my eyes look much brighter.
“Go off to Ksenia; that girl has major makeup skills,” Ixchel chuckled.
Tao spun around to the mirror and we both exclaimed, “Daaaamn!” She had on sparkly eyeshadow (not the one that looked tacky, the professional shit), a soft pink lip stick with a gloss over her lips that made her even more beautiful and her skin was completely cleared (she barely had anything other than a few freckles spotting her neck and cheeks). Her eyelashes had been curled again, she had on soft wing eyeliner and her blue eyes seemed to be more enhanced.
I plopped down in the seat for Ksenia, and she tipped my head back to scan my face.
“Hey,” I awkwardly waved.
“Hi,” she giggled. She sat me up straight, then got to work on my eyes. The only makeup I ever wore was eyeliner on occasion, but it depended if my glasses would go nice with the ink. I didn’t get to take a quick glimpse, so I just knew that Ksenia was attacking my eyelids with an eyeshadow before she moved onto my full lips and dolled me up.
After about another hour of getting pampered and dressed, Tao called my name from the bathroom, so I called out, “I wanna see!” Ixchel and Ksenia said the dresses were surprises to both of us, Tao hadn’t been able to see hers until she actually got it on, and I didn’t have mine and I had no clue what it would look like. I just hope that it is nothing too girly. I’d be fine with a pair of jeans, sneakers and a tee shirt.
Tao opened the bathroom door, and my heart got lodged in my throat. There were absolutely no words to describe the gown on her body. She did a little rotation, which had the chiffon layer of the white skirt flaring up like a thunderous snowstorm. Tao stopped at 180 degrees and my mouth dropped down to hell as I noticed the back had five silver strings to keep the fabric covering her body. I couldn’t even explain the front as Tao turned again. It was a shirt akin to something a belly dancer would wear; a white cup for her 32C breasts, and the satin-like fabric curled around the curve of her breasts, showing off her perfectly cold skin. The cups for her breasts had jewels and crystals embedded into the silk, and from the corner of the haltered-straps, endless threads of blue and white and gray tulle flowed down her sides, connecting to elegant wristlets of glitter, jewels and sparkles. The white skirt flowed down her long legs like water, pooling around her feet in a blue gradient. Ixchel told Tao to bend her knees a bit, and she reached up, smoothed the long, frosty locks of hair back and perched a beautiful Ice crown atop her head. The silver crown with sparkling, expensive blue, silver, and deep purple gems made her curled, pastel blue hair even more luminous. I hadn’t even noticed that the jewels of the top-piece of the outfit crawled higher and higher, until the crystals formed a winsome necklace that was twice as shiny, and had just enough blue lining the big, silver pendant. The necklace looked like it was apart of her skin—so did everything else because that was kind of a exposing outfit—but it was just as elegant as the rest of the shimmering diamonds and exquisite silk and chiffon.
“Wanna see something?” she asked.
Her crooked grin topped everything off… Tao gripped the middle of the skirt, hoisting the light fabric up so I could see up her bare legs. OH GOSH! On her feet were the BRIGHTEST pair of platform high heels I had ever seen. Covered in blue and silver and purple Swarovski crystals, peep-toed to show off her bright pink toenails, raising her a good six inches higher, and practically blinding me. I knew Tao was in love with that outfit because she tried her hardest to do a little fist pump.
“Those are amazing,” I chuckled.
“I wonder what yours will look like. And, I think it’s gonna be good because Ixchel and Ksenia have been in the bathroom for a while, now,” Tao scoffed.
“Or they’re making out.”
Ixchel and Ksenia were partners, and they loved each other more than anything.
“Right. Well, it is almost 10, so, I’m gonna wait out here while they dress you.”
Tao gave me a small smile as I tightened my robe around my shoulders and marched off to the bathroom. When Ksenia did my makeup, she gave me black eyeliner, soft red lipstick, smoky grey eyeshadow and the softest hint of blush that I was restraining myself from touching. Ksenia backed away from Ixchel, who had been previously invading her personal space with a tongue and gluttonous hands.
“Hi,” I snickered.
“Sorry,” Ixchel smiled sheepishly. “We were…”
“I feel you. Now, please tell me that my outfit is a pair of cool jeans, and really nice boots. Maybe an A&F tee shirt.”
Ksenia stole me to the center of the bathroom, which was considerably large, then let Ixchel circle my body with a flowery-scented perfume. She accidentally sprayed the corner of my mouth, and I fell into a fit of coughs that made my powers react; the air started ripping through our hair and sending the loose containers of makeup flying. I stopped coughing then grinned.
“I’m sorry,” Ixchel frowned.
“It’s okay. At least my breath won’t stink,” I giggled.
She gave my arm one last spritz before Ksenia crossed over to my body, ruffled my hair back straight, then they started muttering a Riate spell. I felt like Cinderella as my green robe was replaced with a light dress, and I felt my body become their little canvas for a creative piece of artwork.
When I opened my eyes and the last of the outfit latched onto my body, I gasped and attempted to run over to the body-size mirror hanging on the wall. It was one of those large mirrors that had my entire body in the reflection, even when I had just become a Princess. Now as proven, I am definitely not one for dresses. At all. But… this dress stepped over any line of beautiful and royalty! Long, embellished, sweetheart dress with a breath-taking design and “element” on my body. The silky chiffon fabric was an off-white, but it sure as hell popped. All down the skin-tight bodice, red, silver, blue, green, and purple crystals shined and glimmered like they were trying to blind me—and they weren’t failing. What made me laugh was the effect the sweetheart neckline had on my boobs: big. They were pushed up way much more than normal, and it was making my chest appear like Kim Kardashian’s—except my boobs weren’t man-made. On my arm, hundreds of jewels crawled to my shoulder and to my chest to make a beautiful skin-sleeve, but that sleeve was more than colorful crystals. Those gems wrapped around to my spine, and made a spray of a beautiful rainbow cover my skin like an expensive protector. And the neckline and bodice that had its own crystals and gems exploded onto the skirt, spread out in no order, but the blue, red, purple, silver and green spots of beaded-beauty made the white skirt become much more than just fabric, but a source of power, which reminded me of fireworks bursting in the sky.
Since I was much taller than my usual 5’11, I tucked some of the skirt up, and took a sharp breath as I glared at the shoes on my feet. Ankle strap platform heels, something I had never expected to find myself in. With the colorful jewels covering every inch, not to mention they were peep-toe, so I glanced at my red toenails. This was an amazing dress that I would wear before I went back to chucks and jeans. I dropped the bottom hem, but gasped when I saw the accessories, which would’ve sent me into cardiac arrest: a ravishing, glistening, BRIGHT and elegant necklace that looked fit for a Queen, or at the least, a Princess. The jewel danced and dazzled with thirteen glistening diamond pendants, all colors of the Five Elements. Surrounding those pendants were graceful diamond-set scrolls, and blinding (also much more colorful) diamond clusters. Inside of all of the colored diamonds were the Elements. I’m saying the red ones seemed to have a blazing fire trapped in the shining gem; the purple had slow-moving swirls; the green had never-ending meadows, with wildflowers and trees; waves crashed on a beachshore inside of the blue; and the clear rippled with the strong wave of winter breeze. I think I stopped breathing when I saw the extravagant headpiece. Like an Ancient Goddess would wear, shining and brightening my dark teal hair, the chain headpiece was lined with clear, purple, green, red and blue rhinestones.
I turned around to Ixchel and Ksenia, smiling and feeling the warm energy generating from their bodies.
“This surpassed any of my ideas, and I completely love it.” We squeezed in a hug, but they quickly pulled away to make sure my outfit stayed in place.
“Oh! We have one last item for you and Tao. Follow us,” Ksenia remembered.
I followed her and Ixchel out of the bathroom, and when Tao saw me, we fell into a series of girlish giggles and squeals. There was a tap on my shoulder, so we turned around and saw Ixchel standing with two boxes in either hand.
“Enjoy these. Merry part, High Priestesses.”
Ksenia cloaked all of the makeup and sparkly stuff before she and her partner clutched hands, and left the room to attend the Ritual in less than an hour. I turned around, but my jaw dropped when I saw Tao smiling at me. Dangling from her ears and peeking out of her hair were silver hoop earrings. The perfect size to make everything complete and royal. From the big silver rings, six crystals in five shades of blue and one silver added more cold to her Ice Queen outfit.
“Put yours on,” she blurted.
I opened the box, gasping when I saw the elegant earrings. I snapped in the stunning pair of chandelier earrings and grinned at Tao. Gold and lacking the effect to bore, the earrings felt so light, yet they possessed more real diamond than most people ever got to see—let alone wear as an accessory to be Crowned. I liked the fact that there wasn’t anymore color; just brilliant pearls that dropped down from diamond chains. I was seriously dressed like royalty. I was trapped in adoring the jewelry when Tao poked my left boob.
“What in the fuck?” I scoffed.
“That’s enough ta-tas to make any guy drop,” she smiled.
I poked her navel. “You’re one to talk, Miss Belly Dancer.”
Tao gyrated her hips like an exotic dancer and we were in the middle of laughing when the door opened. My eyes locked on his body, and I kinda just stared for a minute.
“Hello, High Rian,” he grinned.
“Hi…” My voice was kind of crackly because I had never seen him look so nice. He had on a black henley shirt, dark jeans and his platinum blonde hair was in its normal state of messy but cute.
Behind Dallas, I noticed the Twins and Magnus, waving and grinning at our revealing outfits. Bear and Bull had on black button-up shirts, with their own black jeans and messy hair. Bull’s hair seemed so out of place contrasting the dark clothing he had on, and his bright grey eyes roamed over my body. Magnus was in a plain black knitted sweater, dark jeans and his minty hair was pulled back into a low ponytail. Awh, they were so cute.
“Well,” Bear announced, “we wanted to visit you two before you became too cool for school—literally.”
“Wait, we won’t finish this year?” Tao and I asked inanely.
“You will, but, it’s complicated,” Dallas reassured.
“And, you’ll be out of the dorms and living here,” Magnus added. He had even changed his lip ring to a dark blue.
“You won’t have Mio years.” Bull gave us a bright smile.
I grunted. “That’s like skipping college.”
“And just getting a really good job even though you have no idea what to do,” Tao chuckled. The soft sound made her chest move a bit, and I had to stifle a giggle when Bear got all wide-eyed at me.
“Oh, it’s almost 11:50, and we have to hurry up to Ria. 65 (rec hall),” Dallas said.
The Twins and Magnus left the room first, and Tao had gone to the bathroom to leave us a few private minutes. I locked my arms around his neck, hearing Dallas groan a bit as my boobs smashed into his much flatter chest. I murmured looking up at him and getting trapped all over again in his incredible eyes. I relaxed in his arms, and temporarily basked in his yummy smell and the sense of security I always felt when I was with him. He poked my nose like he always did.
“Now I’ll have a really awesome girlfriend,” Dallas whispered on my lips.
“You saying I was never an awesome girlfriend?” I growled, but Dallas cupped my face and gave me a kiss. In the heels, we were face-to-face, and I brushed my nose with his as our tongues came to play.
Dallas kept his hands out of my hair, but he couldn’t really touch my back because of the crystals, so he gently held my ass and kissed harder until I pulled away for some air. He checked his watch then gave me a little peck while saying, “Trust me, I’ll see you in like five minutes.”
“I love you…” I gently said after him as Dallas walked out of the door. I was so gonna take this dress off and fuck him silly later on.
Xi and Karder walked us down to the Rec Hall, dressed in all black, again, and their dull hair looking even brighter in the blue light of the full moon. The walk was relatively silent except for the soft jingling of Tao’s crystallized top, and the clicking of our heels. Trust me, wearing these made me remember how much I despised the feel of not being flat on the ground. When we reached the Rec Hall, Xi and Karder led us up the staircase, and to the grand auditorium where Full Moon Rituals were held for the entire campus to be present inside of the large room. Brice was giving his regular Ritual casting, with candles, a blessing and a call from the audience of colorful heads and a dragon by the back door. It seemed as if everyone knew what was happening next, and as I scanned my eyes over the entirely too large crowd, I spotted one head of blonde. A damn sexy blonde head of hair. I mentally asked him a question, knowing that Dallas would answer me.
Is this a bad time to have to pee?
A very bad time… Dallas answered. Good, at least we were on the same page.
Brice and Professor Nolan gave a big announcement about Brice “leaving the throne” and handing it down to two teenagers. Great. That meant it was time for the Ritual. The entire auditorium reminded me of the arena from Gladiator, just a bit smaller and much more modern. Overhead, the blue glow of the moon made me sigh, but it was not helping my nerves at all. Brice and Nolan were in the middle of the “arena”, like Russell Crowe had been standing in the movie—except, they didn’t have weapons and they weren’t shouting Are you not entertained?! with a bunch of armor and sweat covering their bodies. Ya know what, I’m gonna stop talking for the best.
“As I resign my time as a High Rian, I want—no. I think we all need for there to be another High Rian worthy of fulfilling your needs, and being the best that they can be. So, why don’t we get on with the Crowning?”
I barely breathed as the Rian Warriors broke into a series of shouting, praise and welcoming us. Nolan crossed over to us, grabbed our hands and said, “Just relax. It’ll be over in no time,” as quiet as he could to comfort us. Before he let us saunter over to the middle of the auditorium with Brice, I glanced around one more time as a regular teenager; there were probably 100,000 Rian throughout the world, and there was a good 3,000 anticipating our arrival at the very moment. Nolan gave our hands a soft tug, and we got to Brice, who was smiling at us with hands open.
“Let the Crowning begin,” he gently emitted.
I hooked my arm through my Father’s and he bent down to my ear and whispered, “I don’t think it is all that fair that my own daughter has more authority over me.”
I grinned and kissed his cheek.
“Daddy”—I only called him Daddy when I was trying to be innocent and cute—“you’ll just have to accept the fact that I can tell you when to make me a sandwich.” I gave his green hair a little pat, but Dad kissed the ink on my forehead.
“I’d be honored to prepare my High Priestess a sandwich. Go, there is one more part to becoming High Rian, and you need to retreat to the Mansion.”
I hugged him once more then walked off, getting a few greets from the people I now had control over. Well, not really, but, I was still omnipotent to them, and it was kind of weird.
My life was a bit easy: I was a smart human, then I came to Rianate and got a power never heard of, then, I fall out with the High Priestess, but, I found out she was evil and killed her, and I got five new powers—which was not supposed to happen—and become High Rian with my best friend at the age of 18! Not to mention the sexy boyfriend I got, and the way I lost my virginity, and how I was just a people-person who made friends easily (that was when I wasn’t an awkward creep who didn’t speak). So, what’s the point of trying to be good girl? I had advanced powers, I had a prematurely extended Maxi, I just got Crowned High Priestess/ High Rian, and now I was gonna graduate my Rio year, then become an entire incumbent, and still have an amazing boyfriend. That was one of the things Lena had been right about: my life. It was easy, but I didn’t want the easy way out. Agh.
I reached the Mansion, and the door opened to the yrfud named Venus. She was no older than 30, with a vibrant smile that was warming and welcoming. She had obviously been at the ritual because she had on a black minidress with black dress boots.
“Hello, beautiful. Come on in, Brice is expecting you, and Tao got here a few minutes prior.”
She invited me in and I stepped into the foyer, getting trapped in the astounding artwork hanging over the double staircases. It was a large painting of Rianate 300 years ago, and all I could say was, “Wow…”
“I stare at it everyday,” Venus sighed. “Now history is being made with High Priestesses named Tao Keyton and Eris Faye.” She gave me a sweet smile and I knew I would love her.
Venus led me to a dark hallway, then sashayed to a large arched doorway, that had a sizeable landing before a gazillion steps down to the basement. The steps were covered in a light beige berber carpet, winding and twirling with a beautifully designed iron baluster that disappeared after the third wall I spotted from the top of the steps.
“Brice and Tao are down there, so, have fun!” she grinned. She left me alone on the staircase, and even though the doorway was expendable and I could easily see with the five gaslights on the wall, it still felt weird going down this staircase. Suck it up, Eris. There’s nothing to be scared of.
“Hello, your majesty.”
I glanced to the direction of the voice, and Brice was smiling up at me with a hand outstretched. I seized his hand and he brought me down the last two steps and to the marble floor. Damn, it looked like another house in the basement! Everything was modern, with only marble and berber and persian carpeted floors, and there was an entire new foyer that had four hallways bending out of it. The foyer was amazing, but when Brice opened the door to the third hallway—the only hall with a door—I let out a little curse and followed him further into the concrete room. There were immense bookcases on every wall, there was an antique table with an open book sitting on it, and the room itself was just stunning.
“Brice?” I blurted.
“Where are you gonna go? I kind of like it when you’re head of campus.”
He broke into a big grin and I glanced at his bright white teeth.
“Quebec. My sons have decided to gather their families and join me,” he sighed.
“Quebec? You’re Canadian? And the Twins have families, other than wives?”
“Yes and yes. I was born in Rianate, but my daughter lives in Quebec at our family’s mansion. Xi has a four year-old named Astaire with his wife, Luci. Karder has Capri and they are with child.”
My eyebrows shot up to my hairline.
“I did not know that. Well… I’m really gonna miss you.”
We stopped in front of a glass case. One big enough for a man to rest inside of.
“What is this?” I asked.
“The second half of becoming a High Priestess. Close your eyes and I will recite the spell,” Brice gently answered.
I slowly closed my eyes and he rested his heavy hands on my shoulders then said the spell. I’m not sure if I fell asleep or died.
My eyes shot open and I tried to move. Everything was blue, distorted and I had no idea where I was. It was as if my body was stuck in glue: I couldn’t move any of my limbs or turn my head. My eyes weren’t even open, I just knew that I was conscious and not dead on the floor. The echoed sound of footsteps got louder… and louder until they stopped. The airy feeling of being alone and free rushed through my body, and I figured out where I was. I was in the glass case. It was full of water. I was floating. My body was still. The dress was still on me and, I couldn’t open my eyes. Just imagine the scene in Avatar when the scientists put Jake in that big water encasing, and he was floating while he appeared sleeping. That’s probably what I looked like.
An uncomfortable shudder jolted my body awake.
I sprang awake, sat up straight and was completely fine. I glanced to my right, seeing Tao in the other case with the same thing going on.
“How was the nap?”
We looked straight and saw Sumiko, Dad, and Brice standing there, smiles and all.
“What was the point of that?” I asked as Dad came over and helped me out of the case.
“It is called a zizlyaie—a form of setting your body free of evil,” Brice explained.
Despite the fact that I had just been in a pool of water, my body was completely dry and I didn’t have that I-just-stepped-out-of-the-shower-chill blazing over my body, so Dad straightened my headpiece as we followed Brice upstairs.
“So it’s like purification?” Tao asked.
“Exactly. Let’s say that you two are High Rian for five years, so of the new year of 2021, you would have another zizlyaie,” Brice answered.
“Oh. Okay. So… That means you and Lena have not had one in…”
“Three years, that is why she could easily perform the Black Magick Rituals. It is much easier to understand when you two are older, don’t worry.”
I gave a silent nod to no one in particular and we continued walking up the gazillions of steps.
“Shit, as long as it doesn’t mess up my hair,” Tao whispered to me.
“As long as we can bring food in the case,” I replied.
She giggled and we looped our arms together. Brice gave us goodbyes, then Dad and Sumiko stayed at the mansion a bit longer to discuss the whole High Priestesses stuff and rules until our last year of high school was up. It would be a lot different to move in the mansion just after my Rio year was us, and it would be even more weird to have control over campus when I barely had control over myself. I mean, I could easily summon my powers in an orderly manner, but a High Rian gets more powers, and I already had nine to keep up with. Agh.
“So,” Tao said in the dark night, “what are we doing when we get back to the dorms?”
“Sleeping. It’s Sunday, and we still have to wake up for school tomorrow,” I groaned.
“What are we doing with the outfits?”
Tao rolled her eyes.
“I’m pretty sure they’re our dresses, and if we wanna keep them, then we can. But I have no clue how to get this stuff off of my arm and back.”
“Hehe, you have to pick them all off,” Tao snickered.
“SERIOUSLY?!” I couldn’t pick all eight thousand of those off of my skin!
“I’m kidding, I’m kidding. No, Ixchel explained the spell, it’s just a few Riate words, and we have our normal clothes back. I guess these will hang themselves up.”
I nodded and she opened the glass doors to the dorms. The hallways were swarmed with girls in pajamas and all of the lights were on. So much for a silent enter. I didn’t do so good when eyes were on me; it was sort of awkward and I was used to blending in and going with the flow.
Proceeding a steaming shower and getting dressed in an oversized sweater, I tromped down the staircase and to the kitchen for a late night snack before bed. Most of the girls were sleeping, considering it being Sunday and 4am, so, I turned on the kitchen light and went over to the third fridge and searched for some Greek yogurt. As I sat on the counter, swinging my legs and scooping out the delicious treat, my phone buzzed on the tabletop. I couldn’t help but smile when I saw who it was.
Dallas: Hey. R u up?
Me: I’m not supposed to be, but, yea.
Dallas: Call me.
I tapped on the little cellphone icon and Dallas instantly answered.
“Don’t you have work in the morning?” I asked.
“No. But, the good thing is, soon enough, you’ll be making my work schedule,” Dallas chuckled. I could just see him laying down in the bed, in the dark, talking on the phone and grinning.
“Well, yeah, but, you will still have to work. Anyway, what do you have planned for tomorrow?”
“I don’t think I have anything planned, why? Are you gonna accuse me of killing a dragon and sleeping with a Rio? Nooo.”
I giggled while I climbed the stairs and turned down the third hallway.
“Does it really count anymore?” he asked. “I mean, you are the youngest High Priestess in history, and, it’s not fair to have blue balls if your girlfriend is busy with work.”
“Dallas, I am so not gonna be busy with work. Because I have no idea what to do. And I don’t want to bullshit it,” I groaned. I sank into the bed and curled up under the warm bedspreads.
“Still, it is your job and role. Oh, I forgot, you get some sleep, and, I‘ll be miserable.”
“You poor baby. I love you and I’ll make sure to see you after work.”
“Alright. I love you too, go to sleep, Avatar.”
I reluctantly hung up, then tossed my phone to the nightstand and laid back on the pillows. Nothing felt any different, I just felt… whole. Like someone had been asking me the same question that I didn’t have the answer to, but now that I was Crowned, I knew the answer and was willing to explain it. I was also feeling kind of tired. And just to think, I was the second youngest High Priestess ever, the second person ever with nine powers, and the only Rian ever to start off with a gift for all Four Elements. But, the question was: did I deserve it? I mean, yeah, I extinguished the evil High Rian, but, I haven’t always had to work for something. As a human, Dad bought me a car when I was 16, we were privileged—no, we did not spit Benjamins and crap gold—and, I was just quiet. Smart. Pretty-ish. And never asked for too much. As a Rian on the other hand, I got a power that was never heard of, lost my virginity to a sexy Dallas, made amazing friends and learned quickly, but it’s not like I had anything bad come my way.
Me: Eris, you’re being stupid; not everything came to you easy-peasy.
Me: But what if those things did? I’m not even legal, and, I’m still power-short. I have no idea what new powers come with being Rian. And it’s like halloween: walk around, ask for candy or a treat, and they just drop it in there.
Me: Shut up! You’re gonna be fine.
Me: What if I’m not fine? What if this turns into something controversial and I am not a strong Priestess??
Me: What would Dallas say? Dad? Mom? Nana and Papa?
Me: Okay, yeah, you’re right. But! I practically have control over them!
Me: Eris. You. Are. Being. Irrational. Shut up and go to bed.
Me: I’m telling you, it’s all downhill from here.
As my consciousness ebbed, my mind went into free fall, swirling with chaos of a new dream.
The crazy month of March was up, and it was already April by time I settled my mind and nerves. Especially with help from Dallas and Tao. Campus was abuzz again, mostly toward Tao and I while we sat in class; being High Rian and having to do schoolwork was fairly humorous. I dunno if it was an intimidation thing, or students were just scared that Tao would freeze their heads and I would burn their bodies and give them detention with Professor Bep—the bitchiest Ritual and Spells instructor you’d ever meet.
As Tao babbled on about some really cute guy she was talking to at lunch, I daydreamed about Dallas and when he’d get off of work. He had been gone all week, and sex was just calling my name! I was so bored last night that I started…
“… get out of LaLaLand and listen!” Tao scoffed.
I made a fake pout and stared at my fingers.
“I can’t. I’m bored and horny,” I grumbled. I flicked a french fry onto her plate and Tao shook her head.
“You need some help. But anyway, did I tell you about my new accomplishment?”
I winged an eyebrow at her glassy eyes. The scar on her face twitched as a muscle in her cheek pulsed and Tao broke into a bright smile.
“Crispin. Him and his sexy eyes,” she purred.
Tao’s “accomplishments” were the guys she had sex with or flirted with, and, the only guy so far had been one—Crispin. They had been texting and hanging out in class, but they hadn’t gone any further than the regular laughing and smiling stuff. Crispin did have some sexy eyes: bright and silver like a White Tiger, and an affinity for Desert. He was a very gentle person and Tao had been his friend for a long while.
“Go for it. But, I’m telling you: he is one of Maz’s friends, and he ever hurts you, call me. I will personally make Crispin crisp,” I grinned.
Tao smiled and laughed. She was happy.
“I will. And you should go and see Dallas,” she said as she slurped on some pasta.
“Manners”—I tossed a napkin at her face—“he’s not done with work. And, I think I’m gonna surprise him.”
“Is that a code for sex?”
I sighed and shook my head, taking a gigantic bite of my burger. I didn’t eat a lot of red meat but there was nothing in the world that would ever stop me from smashing on a delicious burger. Tao had taken me to the cafe after last Hour so we could have a girls’ night and have fun for the weekend. Being it was Friday, the cafe was a bit busier, so, we were sitting in a booth and talking while she scoped around for Crispin.
“Is he supposed to be coming tonight?” I asked.
“I dunno, but, he did say that his friends were probably stopping at the cafe. So,” Tao absent-mindedly answered while she glanced over my head.
“No. I’m gonna seem thirsty.”
I arched my left eyebrow but Tao waved me off dismissively and continued eating her pasta.
“Say,” she muttered, “why don’t you and Dallas do something this weekend? Maybe go through the portal and have fun in L.A.?”
I shook my head. “Dallas has tried to talk me into it, but, I don’t want to see any snow. Hell, L.A. will mean strip clubs, and I’m pretty sure Dallas would want to go.”
She barked out a laugh but cleared her throat. “Nahh, I don’t see Dallas sitting around with a bunch of middle-aged men and watching some cheap whore dance, when he could have you in doing it.”
Tao gave me a naughty smile and started a small gyration of her hips, but I banged my head back on the soft leather of the head of the booth. I opened my mouth to say something to her and was interrupted by my phone going crazy in my pocket. Tao’s went off, too.
“Hey, mom,” she answered hers.
Mine was my father, so I knew they had to be at the same place and wanted to tell us something.
I scooted closer to her ear and listened: “Girls, come down to the mansion.”
“Okay,” Tao and I replied.
Sumiko hung up, leaving Tao and I to pay the bill and get to the mansion. She dropped a fifty on the table, then we left the cafe and to the mansion. I hadn’t learned the obvuert yet, so Tao gave me a little nod before we “jumped in the pool” and appeared on the front staircase of the mansion. Well, that was fast. I knocked, the short woman named Venus answered and gasped.
“Hi, you two! How are you? Come in, come in.”
She gave us big hugs and kisses, then called Brice’s name toward the southern hallway. Brice peeked his head out and waved to us.
“Hello, ladies. Come, come, your parents are here,” he smiled.
We shared one last grin with Venus before darting after him and arriving in the living room. All I could say was damn. Damn times fifty. There was a window wall on the northern half of the room, the other walls being a textured pattern that reminded me of wood. There were two vintage sectional couches, with one matching armchair that had a beige pillow resting on the arm and the soft color contrasting with the dark blue,velvet cushions. An oval coffee table sat in the center, a big vase of elegant callas and two tealight candles that had a vanilla smell wafting from the burning wicks. In the back of the room, there was a massive ash wood bookshelf—but it was empty except for a naked picture frame. On the west wall, there was an antique piano and a tall, red velvet houseplant in the corner. The wall that I had my back to had a wood-burning fireplace, with a small Persian rug, but as my eyes travelled higher up the wall, my mouth dropped open.
“Please tell me how big that is,” I gasped toward Brice.
“300,” he chuckled. “You’d be surprised how loud it gets.”
The flat screen tv that was hanging on the wall over the fireplace was like a jumbotron. 300 inches was amazing, and I knew I would watch some awesome basketball games with that HD. Anyway, surrounding the screen were the plain paintings every household had. Ya know, the flowers, the abstract, the nature and the random boat. The floor was entirely seamless oak wood, and there was a monstrous, area shag rug between all of the couches and under the table. Brice invited us to sit down with our parents, who I hadn’t even noticed until then. Tao sat on the left side of the sectional, I sat with our arms together and faced the adults.
“This is my last day here as High Rian, hence the nakedness of the residence, and I know that you two will love it here,” Brice sighed, then a bright smile.
“We have made some rules about this whole Priestess thing,” Sumiko announced. “You two will not make huge decisions until the age of twenty or until you both have learned all of your powers, but until then, Jeff and I will be helping you power-wise and campus-wise. All decisions have to fly by you, though, and any meetings or calling of Sons or any all-campus Rituals. Since Jeff and I have lives outside of Rianate, you two will hold the mansion down, but there will be no partying unless you ask. And of course, you only have two more months of school, so, before you know it, you’ll be making work schedules, giving detentions, making new rules and holding the entire fort down.”
As she smiled, her honey brown eyes seemed to glow at us. Sumiko reminded me of Li Bingbing (the name was stunning), because she had a sharp nose, plump lips that always had a nice shade of lipstick on, her skin was a pale olive, and she had the brightest smile that could cheer up the saddest man in the world. And with the hair, she was just a bright, vivacious woman.
“Also, you guys are young, so, I advise you two to act right, and continue school like normally. No skipping class because you felt ‘sick’, no being irresponsible and acting out, nothing different. Become more mature. With the power extensions and the new roles, you two have to step up your game and take control, because it is not easy to run an entire campus of students, adults, Magick, creatures and Sons and Daughters. Of course, it is our job to make sure you two are doing well with everything, and to make sure that all jobs of a High Rian are being met,” Dad added.
Brice nodded and stuck his arms out for a hug. He was the first person I ever met on campus; he cared for anything and everyone; he was powerful; he was a true leader. Brice still had his affinity, but he shared some of his power with Tao and I when Lena was killed and donated her powers to us, so it borrowed a little from Brice. As he squeezed us in a warm, fatherly-like hug, Xi, his wife and his son, Karder and his wife appeared in the open doorway. Tao let go first, and I made sure to sneak in a little “thank you” into his ear.
Astaire was adorable. He had bright green hair, with dull grey eyes and a toy car in his hand. Xi and Luci were perfect together: Luci was on the shorter side, her hair short and spiked up, blazing blue eyes and a hand wrapped around her husband’s waist.
“Hi, I’m Luci,” she smiled at us. Her black hair was so dark that not even a midnight sky had anything on her.
Xi smiled when Astaire ran up to us and gave us a big hug. He hugged me around my neck and said, “You gunna live here ‘stead of grandpa,” in the cutest voice ever.
“Yes, I am,” I giggled.
Xi gave me a dismissive look to set him down. “He’s Sympathy, so, he hugs everyone he sees and asks them personal questions,” he informed me.
I nodded as Astaire gave Tao and hug and a big kiss on the cheek. She blushed a little bit to make him feel better. Little Astaire ran back to his Dad’s arms, and rested on his large shoulder. Karder and Capri both gave us hugs, then Brice said his final goodbyes.
“All of your things are here from the dorms, feel free to adjust and explore whatever you like. Merry part, and merry meet again,” Brice announced to us. We waved and they walked to the front door, leaving two clueless girls standing in the living room with their parents.
Dad cleared his throat then rose to his feet; he grabbed Sumiko’s hand and she stood also.
“We have to get back home. Can you handle the first night alone?” Dad asked.
“Yeah,” I shrugged. “Is there a map for this place?”
“Ask Venus to help you navigate; she has been here since she was born,” Sumiko smiled. “We will see you sooner than later, but get cozy, and make sure you follow normal schedule. We’ve asked Professor Nolan and Professor Nanaya to check up on you when you need help; merry part.”
They left the mansion, and Tao gave me a shocked look. We started jumping up and down, talking over one another, squealing and giggling and being very immature. This place was gigantic, so we would really need Venus to help us around and show us what was what. She came downstairs, ten pieces of paper in either hand.
“Here you go, ladies. These are lists of the rooms in the house, and what hallways lead to what, where your bedrooms are, schedules for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and other important things that you’ll need for your stay here. Would anyone like a snack before I leave for home?” she smiled.
I shook my head in the negative; Tao bobbed her head in the positive. Venus led her down hall and toward the kitchen and I used the list to locate different things. I think it took me about two hours to finish the bottom and basement floors, then I had to pick a staircase to lead to the top floor. I picked the left staircase, then trotted up to the large landing behind the banister. Oh boy. There were six hallways: three on this side of the staircase, three on the other. I picked the left first and explored down those doors and found the rooms of washing, three studies, gazillions of guest rooms and two individual bathrooms. Damn. If that was just one side, what was on the other?? I went down the first hall of the right side, and I found a storage closet, two extra guest rooms, a plain room that was used for Power Control, and another bathroom. The second hallway had Tao’s bedroom and bathroom and I think I had a heart attack.
It was designed like a modern-ish Princess Room, with the royal furniture and the vintage-looking designs and the stuff fit for a Queen like Tao. The color theme was pastel blue—the shade matching Tao’s hair—and white, which had the walls blue and white: two walls white with those doors blue, the other walls blue with the other doors white. The floor was a soft, light wood, and the colors against the hard floor looked stunning. Walking through the door, I could already tell that the room was 8x bigger than our dorm and there was enough expensive furniture to make my face explode. On the southern wall, there was a floor-to-ceiling window with sheer drapes limiting the amount of sunlight bursting through the room; placed diagonally in the corner was a King size bed, a metal canopy that had white and blue drapes, creating some privacy, but hidden inside of the thin material were icicle lights that shone crystal blue. The nightstands on either side of the large bed were white, with Ice crystal lamps sitting atop the smooth marble. The bedsheets were blue and white, a million pillows with flowered patterns making the whole thing look like a comfortable Heaven and there was a few boxes sitting directly in the middle of the puffy bedspread. Must be a gift. Damn, for one wall, that had a lot of shit. On the western wall, there were double closets that had Snow and Ice garlands covering the soft white wood. A few feet on the left of the doors, there was a dresser that had another crystal lamp and a vase of white roses and blue magnolias that fit the theme perfectly. Next to the dresser was a massive pile of snow, most likely for Mumble to play and sleep in. On the eastern wall, there was a vintage vanity with a teensy bench of blue leather and a small safavieh shag rug under the legs. There was a vintage set of combs, brushes, makeup tools and other stuff, including the enormous box of makeup Tao had always kept. The mirror of the vanity had a silver frame that had baroque artwork of twists, curls and hidden flowers. On the left was the door to the bathroom and to the right was a short, in-wall bookshelf that was no taller than 3 feet and the bright white shelves held all of Tao’s schoolbooks and personal novels. I hadn’t even noticed the 16×20 picture frame on the wall of a picture of Tao as a baby, with her father holding her in his arms and smiling. It was beyond adorable and I just remembered how his face lit up when he spotted Tao at the warehouse. Doing a 180 do i was facing the entire room and my back facing the vanity, I saw the white chaise lounger placed in the center of the wooden floor, and a second safavieh rug under the clawed feet, only this rug was much larger. To the side of the elegant furniture was a small glass table that held five, blue tealight candles. Doing another quick turn so I was facing the northern wall, I saw the entrance door was blue, but had a white ‘T’ painted in a bright white and a little snowflake on the curve of the top line. The rest of Tao’s posters had been scatteredly hung up on all of the walls; there was another dresser with a 50” flat screen hanging above the wide furniture; the remainder of her personal items had been put into dressers or neatly against the wall; there was a white hamper basket to the left of the door and my eyes drifted higher to the ceiling. Damn. A crystal chandelier with fancy lighting and a million shining icicles was directly over my head. At the moment, the only source of light in the room had been the widow, but I just wondered how appealing the room would be with the ornate illumination. The icicles also were crystallized snowflakes and water droplets. That would look amazing. Tao’s room was extraordinary and awesome, so I moved onto the other rooms of the top floor.
I finished that hallway with pretty much the same stuff, then went to the last hallway and explored the rooms. Guest rooms. Closet. Study. Rec room. Staircase to the basement. A bathroom. Closet. My room.
My room was designed like a Princess’, too! Exactly the same as Tao’s but my theme was teal and black. The lounger was black, my bedspreads were teal and black, my window had black drapes, the vanity was black, the rugs were teal, the walls and doors alternated between teal and black, my lamps were plain crystals, the curtains over my bed were plain black, my dressers were black, all of the picture on the wall was of my mother with me as a baby, you get the gist.
My personal stuff had been put into places like I prefered, Boing had her own bed and Chinchilla gym, and in the middle of my gigantic bed, there was another set of boxes like Tao had gotten. The biggest one had a pair of red pumps with rhinestones and gems decorating the toe, which I am pretty sure I wouldn’t wear. The medium box had a pair of swarovski earrings and a little notebook decorated with a very bedazzled ‘EF’, then the smallest box had a cute pen worthy of a million dollars. This place was gonna be beyond perfect. Since I had finished exploring and I was ready to sit down for a bit, I sat at the vanity and wrote a list in my notebook:
Quiet rooms: 13
Bedrooms/ Guest rooms: 31
Power-Control rooms: 18
Rec rooms: 4 (including theater, game room, crafts room, gym)
Dining rooms: 6
Storage closets/ rooms: 19
Total: 178 ROOMS. *not including hallways and outside*
Jeesh. I was gonna have a lot of fun here. I was feeling a bit hungry, so I kicked off my boots and walked downstairs to the kitchen. The refrigerator was bigger than two of me put together, and I reached into the back for an apple. As I bit further down to the core and scanned my eyes over the expansive room, I saw Tao running into the door and she used her socks to slide over to me on the marble floor.
“HAVE YOU SEEN OUR ROOMS?!”
“Yes, I have. That ‘E’ on my door is quite luxurious,” I chuckled.
“Shit, this place is amazing. Oh, I think we should hop in the pool later,” Tao smiled as she took a bite of my apple. “Anyway, that whole thing about throwing parties, we should definitely throw an end-of-the-year one.”
I shook my head. “Nah. It’s all fun and games until someone has to clean up.”
Tao laughed but we agreed on no parties. Hell, if we did throw a party, we might get in trouble or have a big sex-fest in the house. Ugh. Anyway, Tao decided to watch tv in the living room and I couldn’t miss out on the beautiful 300”, so I followed her down the hall and I think I cried as we watched some dumb reality show. The show was terrible, but the HD and volume was beyond my soulmate. After watching twelve episodes of the show and by time it reached 10pm, I was bordering dead, so I changed to just some panties and laid down, shutting out my lights and getting some sleep for the next few days of school.
It had been a few weeks since we moved into the mansion and it was already spring break. Three weeks of doing nothing but sleep, eat, watch tv, sex. Tao and I had really gotten the hang of waking up, eating breakfast, walking to school and soaring through the day to get back home or to see our friends. It was great to have so much more space and we had really made it ours by adding our own pictures, personal things and stuff around the house. Venus, Lezley, Adrianna, Ammyanna, and Alysanna were surpassingly nice: they were always asking us if we wanted something, picking up after our messes, and taking care of us. I liked them. Plus, the Triplets were just 19, and it was fun to have them as our best friends/ maids. The outside of the house had a pool, basketball court, spa, greenhouse, two gardens, an eight-car garage with my favorites and the rest of the yard was covered in wildlife. I loved it out there, especially the four expensive cars in the garage.
I had been laying on my bed, watching a movie on my laptop and minding my own buisness when there was a knock on the door.
“Can I come in?” Tao yelled back.
“Fine,” I sighed. I paused the movie and sat up on the rumpled sheets.
She opened the door, took a few steps in and I think I choked on my own spit.
“Daaaaamn!” I felt my eyes popping out of my skull and Tao was laughing.
She had on a sexy mini dress, in crushed black velvet. It wasn’t the type of velvet that you’d see women wearing on nice suits: this was the type that obviously let me know she had a date: small, tight and exposing. Her hair had been curled in nice, fluffy waves, a pair of feather earrings peeking out from the long strands of blue. Tao lined her lips with the slightest hint of pink lipstick, and as my eyes trailed further down her legs to her feet, I laughed and shook my head. The girl had on a pair of red, strappy, satin heels that made her way taller than her normal 5’11.
“I’m guessing you have a date with Crispin,” I snickered.
“Oh, just maybe.” She winked as she did a little twirl to show me everything.
“Dear lord. Are you guys going to dinner?”
“Hell no. What restaurant would let me in like this? Nah, we’re going to this club in New York.”
I arched a dark eyebrow at her.
“Fake I.D.,” she giggled. “Crispin is downstairs, so, I just wanted to tell you I won’t be back tonight.”
“Have fun.” I waggled my eyebrows and Tao waggled back before changing her hair to its normal dark brown. Her eyes were the same unbelievable shade of blue, and she shut the door and went to her date.
I unpaused the movie and continued watching, but I kind of freaked out when my bedroom door swung open.
“Dallas! What the fuck is wrong with you?!”
“I have ADHD, why?” he replied as a joke. He entered the room and plopped down on the lounger.
I gave him a flat glare. “That’s not funny.” The dimple in his right cheek flexed as he obviously ignored me. I paused the movie again and blew a stray strand of hair out of my eye. “Uhm, who let you in?” I asked him.
“Tao, why?” His eyes flashed the deepest shade of indigo before glimmering an endless shade of sea green.
I shook my head to stop fantasizing about his eyes. “Never mind. Anyway, can’t I get a proper hello?”
Dallas craned his neck and smiled at me. “Hello, Eris.” I gave him a dirty look and Dallas laughed.
“Where are Hannah and Harley? They’d be flying after you by now.”
“Well, you know how they’re from Alaska, and right now in Alaska, it’s mating season. So, let’s just say that I’m very annoyed with the never-ending porno going on at my apartment.”
I laughed and Dallas stood up to turn on the TV.
“So they’re just having eagle sex? Egh.”
“Imagine trying to go to sleep and all you hear is this disgusting squawking coming from the living room. And Harley has been twice as bitchy.”
“That’s sad. Well, you’ll just have to suck it up and let them have sex.”
Dallas shook his head then watched ESPN while I finished my movie. Once I logged out of my Mac, I crawled off of the bed and went to put it back under my vanity. I sat down on the bench and noticed that Dallas had been walking towards me, so now, his arms were on either side of me and I was trapped against the desk.
“Hi,” I said.
“Still want that proper hello?” Dallas didn’t give me a choice before he bent my head back and locked his lips on mine and shoved his tongue past my lips. I teased my tongue against his lips and Dallas used his tongue to explore my warm recess. He pulled away and I saw his lip was moist with our “love”.
“Hi,” Dallas smiled, winking one green eye at me, which resulted in the green to go a perfect cobalt.
“You’re an idiot.”
“Fuck you, back.” He threw a dirty look at me then tromped over to my bed and dropped down on the foot of the bed, stretching his long legs out on front of him, while reclining himself back on his forearms, getting comfy and right at home.
“How don’t you know I was gonna sit there?” I scoffed.
He cocked a sandy eyebrow at me. “How don’t you know that I didn’t give a damn?”
“You’re an asshole, Dallas. It enhances your bitchy personality.”
“Thanks, I really needed those words of encouragement.” He gave me a sarcastic grin but I just sneered. “Hey, I have a question.”
I turned around on the vanity bench and glanced at him in the mirror. “What do you want?”
“What does your dad do? You know, as a human.”
“I dunno, what do you think?”
He gave me an annoyed look. “I wouldn’t have asked the question if I had the answer.”
“Touchè. He’s a Civil Engineer. Why do you ask?”
Dallas sat up and shrugged. “I just always found him to be the bodyguard. Or a bouncer.”
“Why?” I laughed. “He’s too scared to kill flies because the little bitches deserve to live.”
We started laughing and I turned around so I was actually facing him. I hopped off of the bench, ran over to the bed and jumped in Dallas’ lap. He caught me then gave me a big kiss.
“You look like you’d be a bouncer,” I said, running my fingers in his blonde hair.
“Oh, hell no. I’d end up beating someone’s face in and go to jail.” He kissed my wrist. “That person would be you.”
He laughed and poked my nose but I rolled my eyes. “I’m kidding, Avatar. That’s not my thing.”
I snorted. “I think anything with a vagina and a heartbeat is your thing.”
“True story.” Dallas laughed and I moaned when he kissed my lips. “And especially teal hair.”
The way his body was smashing into mine and how Dallas was sending all those kinds of tingling things running under my skin made my lips react to his forceful kiss with a small bite. I lifted up from his lap and crouched between his legs, receiving a small laugh from Dallas and I grinned.
“Well, anything that looks like Dallas, I think I’m all over it,” I purred as I rubbed the growing cock beneath his jeans.
“So, what if I had a Twin? You’d have sex with both of us,” he said.
“You are thinking too hard.” I cocked an eyebrow at him as I bent my head down to get his jeans off. I tersely paused when I placed my hand on the crotch and the heat and hardness of his skin behind it burned instantly through the fabric onto my fingers. I shoved both of my hands between us, got his zipper down without wounding his rigid cock, and starting pulling the denim down his hips.
“Hey,” Dallas said as we pulled off his shirt, “you can’t be censored. Come here, cutie.”
I giggled as he rose to his feet, twirled me around to press my clothed body to his bare anatomy and used greedy hands to yank off my shirt. I grasped his much larger hands and latched them onto my boobs, making Dallas sigh into my hair and his hard cock twitch against me. I released my hands so Dallas could explore other parts of me. He cupped my ass with two hands, then kissed up my spine. Once he reached the ink on my shoulder blades, Dallas used his tongue to trail towards my neck. He spun me around again so my naked chest was smushed against his and he was sucking on my neck. His slick and hot tongue flicked over the raging tendon of my skin; Dallas shoved his fingers into my hair to jerk me closer. Lifting my left leg around his waist, I twisted and pulled at his platinum tresses while Dallas sipped at my heated skin and as his hands roamed to the more intimate parts of my body.
“God, just get me naked,” I panted.
Dallas shook his head and sucked harder, even adding a bit of teeth. By time he pulled away, there was a hickey the size of Texas crawling on my skin and he was grinning like a devious little kid. “Prick,” I grumbled.
He took a few steps toward me so I backed up and Dallas used one hand to shove me onto the mattress. My much smaller tongue darted between his lips and stroked across his own. My fingers curled into his temple, rubbing further down to the ink behind his ear, and everything about Dallas that was hard and rough was pressed into everything about me that was soft and wet. He nipped the inside of my bottom lip with his teeth and leaned closer so I was completely trapped on the sheets of my bed. When Dallas pulled away, my already-full lips felt puffy and devoured by his delicious mouth, and Dallas was on another quest to get my shorts off. I only had on a pair of skin-tight cotton shorts, and once Dallas yanked those off, he tossed it over his shoulder and kissed my nude navel. He wiggled his tongue inside of belly button and I laughed.
“Stop, you ass!”
“I like your ass better,” Dallas chuckled. God, I hated his smart mouth.
He hooked his finger under the leg of my red and black lacies and pulled the last garment keeping him from me out of the way. The trip down my long, smooth legs was enough to have the rest of his blood rushing below his waist and rising his cock to its full 7 inches. I felt like I was gonna combust under his wild, yet so gentle touch. As Dallas kissed and licked and maneuvered around all my damp folds and aching flesh I went a little crazy and arched my back off of the sheets, grabbing his hair and moaning,” I swear with the teasing…”
“Say please,” Dallas laughed. He used the lightest touch to spread my pussy apart.
His tongue explored the damp creases and skin of the places most sensitive, and once he felt me get to the crest of what he was building in me, Dallas teased with a mini kiss. He laughed a little against my grasping folds as I let out a chain of curse words, but once he buried his tongue inside of me, I was alternating between cursing and telling Dallas that he better not stop. A burning sensation ran from my stomach to my sex, and the way Dallas was handling my greedy pussy was killing my body. He trapped my bud of pleasure between his lips and sucked hard enough to have me twisting his fluffy hair with rapacious hands and moaning his name like a song. He kissed all over, sucked on it, bit down hard enough to show me that he meant business, and by the time he slid a finger into my core, I was about ready to kill him for making me seem this easy. He had one hand caressing my breasts, and the hand that was touching my intimate parts twisted and wandered over other sensitive skin and moist creases. I whimpered a little because it felt so good and because I wanted to move but Dallas had me under his control like a little sex-minion. I squirmed on the bed, the pleasure almost too much to handle as he used the edge of his teeth on my clit. The hand that had been touching me was now holding my midriff and the other hand was rubbing down my bare stomach to reach the same places. Dallas kissed the inside of my thigh and further down, then put my legs over his shoulders and licked the entire length of my opening. His hot hands gripped my ass as he flicked that tortuous tongue over my bud of desire. I groaned aloud from the sensation burning inside my tummy and the way Dallas was handling me was getting me close. I got a handful of his hair to keep me tethered in the moment and Dallas lifted his crazy blue eyes to meet mine as he trapped my tiny knob of flesh between his teeth and sucked—hard. That sneaky hand drifted under my leg and he maneuvered his very talented digits in to replace his stroking and seeking tongue. Dallas sucked harder and I let out a mix between a sob of relief and a frustrated cry. The double stimulation was way too much, and I felt a rush of passion wave through my body and aim directly at my throbbing hole. He licked his tongue up and down my clit a few times, teasing the hood and sucking down while stretching my lips apart to expose my entire cleft and his fingers curled forwards to my G-spot. Using his teeth with the most gentle pull, Dallas stretched on my clit and I giggled under my moan. He let go, sadly. Dallas dripped some spit between my lips and sucked my labia around his fingers and that was it for me. “FUCK! DALLAS!” There was not much more than a sharp spark before my orgasm barreled at me in a blinding rush that swept me away on a wave of overwhelming pleasure and release. I screamed his name over and over again, while Dallas was twirling and twisting his fingers inside of me and sipping all of the undiluted juices flowing from deep inside of me. The orgasm was beyond what I expected, mostly because Dallas was still slashing his tongue at my flesh and still wiggling his hot fingers through my hole. Every heavy breath I took, I still had that fluttering feeling in my stomach that was effecting me like nothing I’d ever felt except for with him.
Dallas kissed my navel then the cleft of my breasts and finally my lips. I could taste myself on his hot tongue.
“Jesus, Dallas,” I sighed.
He grinned and stroked his thumb over my neck, and I noticed that his two fingers were still wet. I grabbed his hand, sucking the flat of his middle finger into my mouth. Dallas groaned as I twirled my tongue around his index finger and made sure to get my juices off. We shared another kiss but, that wasn’t enough for Dallas, so he grabbed my jaw and drew his tongue over mine. I sighed because he had never done that before, and good God, was it hot! He wiggled his tongue inside of my mouth, exploring the places he knew best while I wrapped my fingers around his rigid skin and took a slow pump. The raging vein on the underside was burning my skin and Dallas was hard and ready in all the right places. He gave me one more hard kiss before meeting my eyes with a sexy gleam in those blazing emerald irises.
I was on my back, Dallas hovering over me and whisking his tongue at my collarbone. He grabbed the hand I was using to stroke his temple and sucked the edge of my thumb into his mouth. Jesus, that was the worst type of tease and now I knew how it felt when I did it to him. He dropped my hand and came back to my lips so I didn’t die of the teasing shit. His tongue rubbed along mine, his teeth nibbled at the delicate skin on the inside of my bottom lip, and I realized he had gotten my legs open to his leisure, once again. He slipped two fingers over my soaking wet clit and we shared a little grin as I took hold of his cock and guided him to his destination. The first glide of our heated skin was enough to have both of us groaning and moaning as Dallas stroked my body. God, every time he touched me like this, the FIRST TIME he ever made me feel this way, I felt like I was gonna explode from his controlling touch. Where Dallas was all perfectly cut muscle and rough skin, I was gentle and vulnerable to just the smallest contact between our bodies—especially in a situation of nudity. We kissed, we sucked, we bit, and somewhere along the line it went from some kind of spontaneous combustion to a slow burn that had me wrapping my legs around his lean waist and not protesting when impatient hands tangled in my hair. His tempo changed with every wild thrust, and I got louder and dug my fingers into the bunched cords of his neck and held on as Dallas thrust and pounded into me like he was going to imprint me forever into his body. He took the hand he had been holding and pinned it back above my head, with scintillating violet eyes blazing into mine with a mixture of desire and compassion. He caught the other hand that was digging into his spine and pinned it above my head with the other one so I was prone and exposed beneath him. Hell, I couldn’t even be mad, not with his pulsating cock practically filling me up to the maximum and his questing fingers holding me down with the gentle and rough touch. I could feel my inner walls begin to ripple around the thick size of his cock and I gasped and moaned, finally calling his name out in a shaky voice as we raced towards the end together. Dallas let my hands go, but reached down and held my outer thigh against his side to keep me closer. If it was possible, his thrusts became more frantic, his hands greedier, our mouths hotter, and I thought I was going to have to hold him through the storm, when all of a sudden that hand that had been holding my thigh wrapped around my clit and I screamed—literally. I heard him groan and felt some of the tension work its way out of his body, and I cumming just as hard.
I came back from LaLaLand and those unreal eyes flickered open and I thought I was gonna drown in the vibrant blue of them. Dallas gave me a sleepy kiss and pulled out of me, making me sigh from the soft pop it made. He pulled the sheets back, gently lying me under the warm confines of the bed and taking the time to close the drapes on the canopy. Once Dallas shut off the lamps and cuddled up with me, I was about ready to pass out for a year. I looked up and saw him soundly sleeping, his chest slowly getting back to a regular pace and that glow taking over his body. I planted a soft kiss on his lips and bright green eyes shot open.
“Sorry,” I smiled.
“It’s okay.” Dallas pulled me closer and I just stared at the vibrant color of his irises. The right eye was fading into a deep grey, it reminded me of what food coloring does to water once the first drop hits the surface, and the other was swirling between blue and sea green. I was brought back to reality when Dallas abruptly said, “You’re practically having sex with my eyes.”
“And I so would,” I giggled as I slid back a few inches and laid my head back on his forearm.
“I love you. Get to sleep.” Dallas brushed his finger over my nose and gave me a lip-smoldering kiss.
“Goodnight, Rebel.” I kissed him back and turned onto my right side, facing the covered windows. I didn’t know if it was real, or something I imagined, but I could’ve sworn I heard Dallas whisper something else to me, something about a gift. I sighed, I was probably imagining it, and drifted off in my man’s arms.
The next morning, I woke up with the sun bitch-slapping me across the face, because the drapes were wide open and I could see it was a sunny Spring day. I felt a little tap on my leg and looked down, squinting through the light to see Dallas standing at the foot of the bed.
“Finally decided to join the rest of the world, sugar plum?” He grinned and I wanted to smile at his dimple, but I was way too tired.
“Tell the sun to go away,” I groaned, pulling the bedspread over my head and hiding from the sudden rays of light.
“It doesn’t listen. Come on, get up. Venus made breakfast.” He got in the bed with me and laid on my back, obviously trying to get me up. His heavy body wasn’t all that uncomfortable, but as I was not a morning person, I wasn’t in the mood.
“I don’t wanna… Dallas get off…”
“Get up or I’m stealing your blankets,” he threatened. Dallas crawled off to the side of the bed and I peeked one eye out.
“DON’T.” I didn’t get up so he ended up yanking them up and leaving me with the morning chills running over my naked body. “Dallas! You asshole!”
We started arguing back and forth and by time I managed to get up, there was a knock on the door.
“What?!” We yelled as I stepped into some new shorts.
“Shut up! I HAVE A HANGOVER AND YOU GUYS ARE TOO LOUD!” That was Tao.
I giggled and slipped a shirt on, then we went downstairs to get some breakfast. Tao had made it back down before we did, and she was sitting at the dining table with her head down and a steaming mug of coffee next to her inked wrist. Dallas pulled the chair out for me and I sat down, then he sat down on the other side of the table. The table sat 16 but we were cramped together at the far end.
“Did you at least have fun?” Dallas asked Tao.
“Shut up.” She put up the angry finger and he stopped talking. Tao sat up and looked at me. “I had fun but got too drunk.”
“Where’s Crispin? He’s usually coming out of your room all hungover and grinning,” I said.
Venus came into the room with plates of bacon, waffles, eggs, fruit and other foods and condiments, and we thanked her as she weighed the table down.
“You guys want drinks?” she asked.
“No, but thanks, Venus.”
Venus went back to the kitchen and all eyes were Tao.
“Crispin got drunk and went home with some human,” she sighed. My mouth dropped open, Dallas stuffed his face with more pancakes but made a muffled “damn” sound.
“What the fuck is wrong with him?!” I practically yelled and Tao shrugged.
“I’ll break all of his fingers and make him eat them,” Dallas offered.
Tao nodded. “Or shoot him, please. I just have really bad luck with boys.” She tucked her knees under her body in the chair and I laughed at her polka-dotted shorts.
“Or,” I added, “maybe you can shove him into a pond of beer and make him drown in his own bullshit.” I took a big bite of bacon and Dallas gave me a look.
“Pass the syrup,” Tao said. Dallas slid it over to her and she continued: “We can kill him. But as of this moment, I am done with boys.”
I laughed. “What, are you gonna go lesbo?”
“I have a friend who converted to being gay because he didn’t get any good girlfriends,” Dallas muttered.
“Oh.” I scooped up some fruit to be quiet.
“No, I’m not gonna be a lesbian. BUT, if it ever comes to that, maybe. As of now, I am gonna be a single loser and talk to my friends about their shitty boyfriends”—she paused to give Dallas a sneer—“and maybe even date a human.”
“That is a terrible idea and you should never do it,” Dallas quickly interjected.
“Why not?” Tao and I asked, directing our attention to him.
“One, it’s a long-distance relationship. What if they ask you what you do? What if it doesn’t work all that hot? What if you accidentally say something about being a Rian? What if? There are so many things that could go wrong and you don’t want to suffer consequences. Plus, as a High Priestess, you’re not even supposed to prohibit that type of stuff. I know because I got in trouble for that.”
I narrowed my eyes at him but Dallas just blew me a kiss. I couldn’t help but grin at his cuteness and Dallas gave me a sexy wink before focusing on his food.
“Oh, right,” Tao groaned. “Then what am I gonna do?”
“Sit in your bed and watch Netflix all day,” I ruefully said.
“Or go terrorize Crispin,” Dallas added.
“I like your idea, Dallas. And somewhere along the line torture Maz.”
“Great idea!” I laughed but a piece of bacon fell onto the floor. Mikey came out from under the table, stole it, then ran out of the dining hall. “HEY!”
Venus passed the fugitive Great Dane then smiled with our drinks and apologized for being late. She gave Dallas his orange juice and he did a little “yes!” and she gave me my water. Tao continued drinking her coffee and stole some of my fruit.
“Ladies,” Venus announced. She glanced at Dallas and laughed. “Ladies and one gentleman, I’m afraid I have to leave early to go check on my son. He’s a bit troubled with a cold.”
I was about to say okay but lifted an eyebrow. “He has a cold?”
“Oh, yes. Don’t worry, he’s a human. He’s only 2 and has no idea what a Rian is,” Venus explained. Her pink eyes scanned over the room and she burst out laughing.
We all sat back in our chairs and said, “Ohhh!”
She laughed and left the mansion.
“Why do you guys make her work? She is a sweetheart,” Dallas chuckled.
“We try to tell her to go home early, but the woman likes cleaning,” I said, taking another five pancakes from the center plate. “You might know her daughter, she’s a Nio(22 year-old Mio).”
“And we all know how Eris doesn’t pick up shit around her bedroom.” When I shot Tao a dirty look, she innocently sipped her coffee.
“Roasted.” Dallas broke out laughing but I threw a blueberry in his lap.
“Roasted,” I mocked. He threw it back and Tao told us to stop. We both threw blueberries at her and it turned into a blueberry fight.
Dallas threw a strawberry at me and it landed on my pancake.
“Thank you,” I laughed.
We put down our weapons then actually got to eating. Dallas offered to clean up the plates and took our stuff to the kitchen while Tao and I worked on getting the table back to its regular state. Ammyanna, the young girl who had the affinity for Cleaning, told us to just go and do the dishes so she could clean the dining room. Her eyebrow piercing had been changed to a bright green barbell. Dallas, Tao and I finished the last of the dishes then Tao went upstairs to change her clothes and Dallas brought me to the living room. We were watching some random show when he slid his hand up my thigh.
“I have to get home,” he gently said.
“Why?” I asked.
“Practice, and the I have to get something. Not to mention that I have a few other friends to meet up with.”
Dallas gave me a little kiss then went upstairs to change his clothes. Once he came downstairs in a pair of jeans and a red tee shirt, I walked him to the foyer and opened the gigantic glass doors. Dallas turned around and planted his soft lips atop mine.
“I’ll be back later tonight, okay?”
I nodded. “I love you.”
Dallas squeezed my hip before going down the millions of steps and getting to his place. I shut the door, then went upstairs to my bedroom. I decided I needed a shower since I still had bits of Dallas rubbed on my body, so I hopped in and once I got out, I saw Tao sitting in my bed with her book open.
She glanced up and smiled. “Hey. Were you serious about that Crispin stuff?”
I pulled my robe off and dressed in some undergarments and grabbed a tee shirt. After I stepped into my yoga pants, I sat on the bed with her and shoved my glasses on my face.
“What do you mean? Why wouldn’t I be serious?” I gave her a look as I tied my hair into a braid.
“Eris,” her voice was no louder than a whisper, “I lost my virginity to Maz. I had been with him since Hio(8th grade)year. How in the shit am I supposed to just let go after he and his friend had sex with me and threw me to the curb? It just proves that the more that I try to let him go, and as much as I tell myself that I loathe him and his guts, there is something or someone that comes my way who is in some kind of relation to him. I told Maz I loved him, I gave him all of my trust, and he just used my ignorance to mess me up. What good will another relationship do me? If Crispin wasted all of that time with me, then used his charm to get drunk and go to bed with a human, why do I even try? It’s not like some tall, dark and handsome guy is gonna ride in on his Friesian and say, ‘Tao, I hear you’re in need of a great guy. Hop on and we can ride into Neverland.’ I’m pretty sure pigs will fly before that happens.”
“Tao. Please don’t think like that. There’s a perfect dude who rides horses and says stuff about Neverland who’s waiting for you. Shit, it could be that Lane kid, but we don’t know yet. But, it’s not like Maz was perfect. But he was most definitely wrong for breaking your heart like that. And you can’t be biased toward something if you know there’s a chance a really good guy could come along. What if—”
“I don’t want to play ‘what if this, what if that.’ Eris, give me one good reason why I should get back with someone.”
I scoffed and shook my head. “One isn’t enough, there are millions of reasons for you to get another guy and there are TRILLIONS of reasons why guys should be fighting over you! Shit, I would. Please, just, consider it. Don’t act on it yet, but consider the possibilities of finding a person fit for you. Look, maybe you moved too fast with the whole Crispin thing, ya know? It’s a lot of tension on one girl’s brain.”
Tao had an inscrutable look on. She sighed and nodded, the firm line of her pink lips turning into a beautiful smile.
“Thanks. I think I should start listening to you more. I’m gonna go meet up with my friend, Ishella.”
She gave me a big hug and crawled off of my bed. As the door shut, I groaned and flopped back on the pillows. Honestly, if I could, I would find her the perfect guy, and I SHOULD! Hell, when Maz broke her like that, Tao just… was different. Not sad, not angry, not anything except for different. Yeah, she was more off-the-leash and open, but, it’s not happy-sunshine-and-flowers Tao. I’d get her a perfect guy that was fit for her. Maybe even use some of my “male eyes” to figure it out. Great idea, Eris. Anyway, I laid there for a full hour before glancing at the clock and noticing it was nearing 6pm on a Saturday night. And I was doing nothing. My eyes drifted off to the piles of dirty clothes and haphazard of a room I was living in. I swung my legs over the edge of the bed, clicked on my iHome and got to cleaning. Cleaning was not my expertise, but I was damn good at it and knew how to do a pretty decent job. Both of my closets looked like hell on earth—times 45—and I groaned aloud. This would take a while.
I closed the last drawer then stood up and glanced around my room. Eris, 1, Room, 0. Not a speck of dirt was on the floor; all of the clothes were either in the closets or a dresser; my vanity didn’t look like a toddler had gone through my barely-used makeup; my bed was made up and I changed the sheets to another teal and black pattern; everything was perfect. The silver starburst clock on the left of the tv read 10pm, so I went downstairs to grab a quick bite to eat. Being alone in the mansion was the creepiest thing ever because all that I could hear in through the first floor was the running of the aquarium from the other dining hall, and if it was on, the crackling of the fire from the fireplace. I went downstairs to the basement to go grab my affinity book, but I froze when I noticed the jars on the wall.
As in the jars containing our parents and friends’ parents. I bent at the waist, staring into the glass shelf casing with the 9 jars of power. The one on the far right was Indiana; the dust was orange, and Stealth was represented by orange candles, and, it had the Rian symbol for Stealth on the jar in orange paint. The symbol was like two back-to-back crescent moons, but 4 lines running through it: north, east, south, west. The second jar was Cade; the dust was rusty red and the Rian symbol—which was a bay leaf crown in red—marked the glass. The symbols were all colorful and so illustrative, kind of describing the person as a whole. I unlocked the little clasp and grabbed Autumn, Math, Fire, Water, and Stealth. Tonight was the perfect day to cast a good ol’ circle because it was a Full Moon and, the weather was perfectly balanced. The basement of the mansion had its own room of candles, so I sat the jars on a little table and went to grab a rustic red candle, a yellow, and an orange. (Water and Fire were already in my room.) I went to the basement’s kitchen, reaching into an upper cabinet and grabbing five ceramic bowls to pour the colored powders into. All five had engravings like nude tree branches, strictly designed with four leaves on the dark blue bowls. I saw a batch of dry lavender and some surplus eucalyptus and sage, so I snatched up the plants and looked at my pile of Circle Stuff. I gathered all of my supplies, climbing the dozens of stairs and getting upstairs to the hallway. I circled the entire first floor to the front door and sat the items by the front door before running upstairs and searching for the last of my candles. (Now a lighter wouldn’t be necessary.) I changed my stretchy pants to a pair of ass-tight shorts and stepped into my favorite pair of tie-dye VANS.
I clutched all of the materials in my arms, opened the heavy front doors then ran down the steps. I didn’t have any room to move, so I kicked my foot up and the door swung close with some Air. I laughed at myself as I circled around the side of the mansion and toward the back forest. Passing through the gardens and gazing at the acres of clear grass, I entered the clutter of various oaks, pines, ashes, and wildlife growing around a clear trail of rich soil leading deeper beyond. My favorite part about the entire yard was the pond a few miles out: it had a beautiful waterfall and hill behind the scented air of water and the entire land was lined with cherry blossom trees that were beautiful and symbolic. Tao and I had been back here to explore once, but now that it was night time and I was depending on my intensified nightvision and the blue light of the moon, it was clearer to me that this place was pure beauty and a place I would adapt to love.
I found a secluded area of thicketed pines and placed the candles and jars and bowls on the dirt ground. I heard a bush rustling around and glanced to the side, seeing Boing climb out and squeaking like a mad woman.
“What in the heck is wrong with you? What if some bear ate you?”
I picked her up and brushed the leaves off of her thick coat, all like I had done before. Boing lurched out of my arms, going off to her own little world and finding something to snack on. I shook my hair back then stared at the candles and bowls. One rule of my circles: I was not going to call Leadership. I dunno, it just seemed… strange to call an affinity that was 50/50 Light and Dark. Oh well. Since there were 8 candles: perfect cardinal directions, with intermediate directions. I bent down, placing Earth North, Water East, Fire South, and firmly setting Air West. Spirit was usually in the middle, but, I would have to alter and make it Southeast. I made Autumn Northwest since it was so closely related to Earth; Math Northeast; Stealth Southwest. The jars of dust would go depending on affinity, so I emptied Indiana into a bowl and placed the dish in front of the candle. I poured Cade and put his dish in front of Autumn. I got the last of Ross out of the glass and sat him behind the yellow Math candle. Lastly, I placed my mother in front of Fire. (Was it weird that I was calling the dust people? After all, it kind of was.) I laughed aloud at myself then stood up and brushed the dirt off of my legs. Now, I had to call the affinities according to a compass rose—counter clockwise.
I cleared my head, focused on my circle and mentally prepared myself for what might happen with a little poofball of power(we never know). My original powers had had a poem in the book, so, before I even touched a candle, I took five deep breaths and stood in the middle with the burning purifier resting at my feet.
“Air blow away that which is tainted,
Fire burn through the blackness of hatred,
Water wash clean evil intentions unstated,
Earth nourish my soul with Darkness abated,
Spirit fill me so that death I am emancipated.”
I waltzed over to the grey candle and sighed.
“It fills us and breathes life into us. I call Air to this circle.”
I touched my fingertip to the candle’s wick and instantly the soft breeze turned riotous, whipping my hair loose from the braid and sending leaves aloft in the dark night. The air was crisp and cool. A refreshing bath of tangible nothing that snapped my skin and surged through my head. I grasped my fingers at nothing, but caught a blissful breeze that flowed through my fingers.
As the wind kept up and the breeze was coursing through my body, I took three steps to Stealth and sighed. I had no idea what this would feel like, so, it was all a matter of guessing. “It keeps us quiet and discreet. I call Stealth to this circle.”
I touched the tall orange candle and in an instant, I was light on my feet, and all that was audible was the thumping of my racing heartbeat. Not even that, it was like everything went still and that pounding was imaginary and no one could hear it. I glanced at the orange dust that was Indiana… seeing the powder slowly dance like a agile lion stalking its prey.
I stepped over to the bright red candle and beamed at the dust. “It warms and succors us. I call Fire to this circle.”
With no assistance, the red candle burst into flame so more luminous than any other. I lurched back a step when the glowing embers leaped and twirled in a fiery dance, twinkling like stars in hot swirling air and spurting into a blazing shower of sparks like a fountain. The nascent fire played like a kid with a new toy, its flames leaped in excitement, its quiet crackling like so much laughter in the woods. The dust, which was my Mother, started swirling inside of the bowl like she was excited as the flames glistened and danced for her own amusement.
I whispered a “hey mom!” then went off to the purple candle and bit my lip as the lavender wafted its conciliating scents. “It is our essence. I call Spirit to this circle.”
Before I even lit the candle I could feel my soul lift with the tickle-tummy feeling a roller coaster gives me. Everything was calm… steady… light. My mind wasn’t doubled-over with millions of thoughts—I was almost lost in a non-existent mind that sure as hell was not my own. It was a mind of complete peace… Sometimes I wished I could share the “daydream” with other people, then they could join me in the flight of fanciful and cooling.
I stepped over to the light blue candle. “It soothes and washes over us. I call Water to join this circle.”
As the candle lit I could smell salt, and I heard the waves crashing on a beach shore. I hadn’t even noticed the little sprinkle of water dousing over me, soothing and washing me as the beautiful sounds of Varadero flitted my ears. But… that dust was dancing… that dust was blissed. I imagined Detroit’s smooth, wavy voice curling around my body and I just wondered what it was like for Dallas to miss her like this. Her eyes were reflective water that produces the clouds in a sapphire sky… so powerful to make my insides jolt and my lip kick up into a grin. The beaches of Varadero filled my mind, the resorts, the blue water with the power to hypnotize someone into its perfection.
I stepped over the pooling water then I went to the red candle and nodded a little. I always wanted to be an autumn-born baby, but, I got March and was an Aries-baby. “It is the time of year everyone deserves and is the epitome of relaxation. I invite Autumn to this circle.”
As I flicked my finger at the wick there was a benign whoosh wrapping around my body and mind. The oaks and pines converted from dark and bright greens to shades of orange, yellow, red and browns. The pines got that brownish-orange tint on the needles, the large oaks surrounding me were just as beautiful with the warm colors. The air seemed to be bursting with Autumn chill and even the grass seemed to have the “Autumn color” with the light, airy feeling rushing through. A saccharine tingle of pumpkin spice flitted my nose, plus the weird, yet fuzzy, feeling of those premature snow bristles that fell in late November. The rustic dust of Cade wafted and danced and jumped as the fallen leaves drifted around the bowl and decorated the plain dirt trail.
I crossed over to the tall green votive candle and smiled as I prepared for the natural sounds and feelings of Earth to double up. “It sustains us. From when we enter this world to when we shall return. I call Earth to join this circle.”
I lit the green candle, and it burned brightly as the scents of green meadows and wild flowers tingled my nose. I ended up shutting my eyes, a sight of a lovely valley filling my head. The land was a riot of color. The burnt orange Butterfly Weed stood tall amongst the grasses and the prairie Black-eyed Susans appeared to reflect the brilliant sun herself.The Prairie Blazingstar stood like tall, purple, bushy cat-tails. Near the edges of a lazy river grew the blue-violet Wild Irises, reaching for the sun’s nourishment and flaunting their bright petals. It was a place that made me feel like I was twirling around in circles, a pretty red dress on and giggling my head off until the light drained from the sky.
I kind of stared at the yellow candle. I mean, I was grateful for the power, but, Math? I was terrible at Math to begin with. (I guess it’s just a bonus.) “It is the main struggle in school and I have no idea when I’ll be using a slope in everyday life. I call Math to this circle.”
Honestly, this was a power that I needed. A rush shot through my head, almost like a headache, almost like the feeling you get when you know the answer to a really tough formula. I don’t know why I started laughing, but, the power was making the wheels in my head and tummy turn. It was like a big chalk board, and Albert Einstein is trying to explain every form of mathematical induction, and the thing was, I understood it all! The lavender dust that was Ross swirled and I swore I saw little numbers being formed. My head cleared a little bit of the complex, number graphs, and planes, and I felt a little pleasure running through my body. The type of feeling you get when you’re taking a test and you know you have the right answer, that type of pleasure.
All eight of these powers wrapped up into a little connection of energy was amazing: color by color did the candles connect around my body, and that Air was still breezing, the Water was snapping my skin, I was light and airy with Spirit, my feet were quick and easy with Stealth, the Autumn scenery was alluring, the sounds of nature and Earth, the difficult set of Mathematical equations floating around my brain, and of course, the thoughts of heat and my Mother as the Fire burned deep within me. When I settled myself, I lit the braided rope of white sage, eucalyptus and lavender, then blew them out, breathing deeply of the herbs and concentrating on the properties my Papa’s people (Cherokee) cherished them for—eucalyptus for healing, protection and purification; white sage for its ability to drive out negative spirits, energies and influences, and lavender for its beauty and sign of well-living. I did a quick sweep around myself, seeing the candles connected by the spray of energy and humming like a soft melody.
“Airly light of the moon
Mystery of the deep Earth
Power of the flowing Water
Warmth of the burning flame
Lifting of the Spirit,
I call unto thee.”
I seized the four bowls of dust and brought them to the middle of the circle. My powers were still going nuts, so the powders were jumping, swirling, swishing, everything a happy bowl of dust does.
“Healing of ills
Righting of wrongs
Cleansing of impurity
Desiring of truths
Marking of journeys
Uprising of new order
Saving of lost souls,
I call unto thee.”
I poured the contents back into the jars and the lids sealed themselves. As I circulated to dismiss the candles, I thought of something a bit clever:
“Sign of the cat…” I dismissed Math.
“Hearing of the dolphin…” I dismissed Earth.
“Speed of the snake…” I dismissed Autumn.
“Mystery of the phoenix…” I dismissed Water.
“Grace of the swan…” I dismissed Spirit.
“Fierceness of the wolf…” I dismissed Fire.
“Agility of the lion…” I dismissed Stealth.
“Charisma of the dragon…” I dismissed Air.
All I could smell was the mixed scents of the candles and the natural outdoors; all I could hear was Boing shuffling around the leaves and the night shifts and the breeze; all I could see was the empty circle of candles, me, a chinchilla and a sage; all I could feel was the airiness inside of myself; all I could taste was the inside of my cheek that I was biting down on. Boing had taken the time to bite down on the candle and start nibbling it so I had to run over and snatch it from her.
“Does this look like food?” I laughed.
She squeaked then went to another candle. We ran around in circles, Boing trying to snack on ritual candles while I picked them up out of her reach. She tried to bite me but I put the blue candle up as a shield from her razor-sharp teeth.
“Stop. It’s not funny.”
She tested me by lurching at my arms. I sidestepped and started running from her while Boing hopped after me and ended up chasing me around a tree. I picked her up, planted a big kiss on her head and hoisted her fluffy body against my hip. All of the candles and sage and dust were still out in the open, so I gathered them all into a little pile and shoved them behind a tree. Boing nestled herself into my shoulder and I cooed, “Let’s go to the pond.”
She let out a Chinchilla purr as I started walking. Her fluffy tail was continuously brushing over my arm and it was tickling me so I was kinda laughing. I made a few left turns, a sharp right then heard the drippling of the pond fountain. There was a pond, a small creek and the pool in the backyard, plus the waterfall part of the pond. The waterfall was beautiful and amazing, not Niagra Falls but it suited the mansion. Anyway, we got to the pond and the water splashed as the waterfall rippled the surface. The cherry blossoms looked so artistic in the glowing light of the moon, and the way that some pedals were floating around was just relaxing. I knew Boing was scared of water and wouldn’t try anything, so I let her free then took off my shoes and sat down in the grass. The water was soothing, especially this late—well, early since it was 1am—at night. Water flushed up from the surface, creating a constant mist that eventually got my hair wet. I watched Boing on the other side as she chased a rabbit by the trees.
There was a hand that landed on my shoulder and I lurched up prepared to scream my lungs out. I smacked his chest when I realized it was Dallas. He laughed but I slapped him again.
“That’s not fucking funny! How did you find me?!”
“Avatar”—Dallas and I both sat down—”I’ve known where you’ve been for the last hour or two.”
“What?” I asked, brushing some of my moist hair behind my shoulders.
“I watched you.”
I had opened my eyes to say something else but my eyes burst out of my face when he said that.
“Wait, what? Why? When did you find me?!”
“Well, I came over around the time you started leaving back here, and I saw your hair so I followed you to try and catch up, but when I noticed you were casting a circle, I hid behind a tree and watched.”
I gave my head a hard shake. “Damn it, Dallas. Now you make me feel all awkward.”
He winged a sandy eyebrow at me and kicked his mouth into a half grin, that dimple sticking out like a sexy dent of beauty.
“Sorry. But, was that dust stuff what they turned in to?” he asked.
“As in they, you mean our parents. Well, yes. They turned into dust.”
He nodded and wrapped his arm over my head and around my waist. I leaned closer and Dallas dropped a kiss on my head.
“You look happy as you do that,” he said to the water.
I bit down on my lip. “What do you mean? I’m usually a very spirited person.”
“Yeah, but… it’s like you turn into a different person. I didn’t want to interrupt you so I shut up and just watched, and, it was QUITE RIVETING.”
“Quite riveting? Since when does that fall into your vocabulary?” I laughed and he mumbled something under his breath.
“Since when did my fist stop falling at your face?” Dallas gently punched my shoulder and I punched him back harder. “Ow.”
“It’s okay if you watched me. I mean, afterall, being able to cast a circle in front of a large number of people does come with the job… I guess we gotta start somewhere,” I sighed and clasped my hands together in my lap.
“Speaking of job and starting somewhere,” Dallas slowly said with a bit of lilt in his sexy voice, “I have been waiting for a while to do it, ya know, with the Crowning last month and all of that, but, I figured it would only be right to give you something.”
I tilted my head to the side and considered him thoughtfully. “Not so sure I follow…”
He outstretched his right hand, and slowly, his fingers revealed a velvet box, big enough for a piece of jewelry.
“So… I guess it’s kinda a tradition from my family. Whenever someone accomplishes something extraordinary, you get this.” His emotional eyes met mine and I was mesmerized by the deep honey and green swirls that colored the left, I was blown away by the pale blue sparks in the right. “Will you take it?”
With a nervous and trembling hand, I tenderly took the warm box from his palm and just as I lifted two fingers to snap it open, Dallas slid his hand to my bare thigh and watched me. The contents of the box made my heart lunge in my throat and my voice crack a bit. A white gold, ring with five stones of rich, aquamarine and blue zircon gems that were bright as his eyes put together. The two colors together, they were our birthstones: March and December. “Dallas—you’ve—what in the world.”
“It’s an eternity ring”—he seized it from the box and gently slid it onto my left ring finger—“and it’s yours. I kinda realized something when you were Crowned. And, your birthday had just passed, but I wanted to give you something else. Eris, I’m not sure if you understand what type of relationship I’ve put you into: before you came to be you, I would’ve never thought of this ring, but of course, you are you and I am me and us together is something I would’ve never imagined, but I now know that you’re going to be mine forever. I don’t care if you try to give it back, because if I have to, I will superglue it to your finger and you’ll have no choice. And if you can’t comprehend what I’m trying to tell you, I love you. More than I ever expected to.”
The single tear that fell from my eye made Dallas raise his thumb to my cheek and wipe it away, then kiss me with the softest lips. This is what he whispered to me last night: a gift. He was more my gift than I was to him, and the fact that he gave me something so… prepossessing and something to seal our love, it was way much more than I would’ve ever needed from him.
I paused and thought of what I was going to say. “Why? Why do you love me so much?”
He lifted one shoulder and let it fall. “I could show you better than I could explain.”
Dallas flashed his eyes to a deep shades of blue and i swore that the right iris matched my birthstone and the left matched his own. The next thing I knew, he had slammed his lips to mine and nearly knocked all of the wind from my lungs. I hardly had a moment to react before he pressed his tongue to the seam of my lips and, at the grant of my access, delved inside of my mouth. In an instant I had pulled away and arched up into his broad chest, moaning in the contact of his body heat against my own, before I drew back into his lips. Dallas released me reluctantly, resting his forehead with mine and gently brushing his lips over mine. His crisp and cool breath hit me, sending my mind and soul into LaLaLand all over again.
“Was that enough? Or do I have to shout at the top of my lungs that I love you?”
“That was enough,” I whispered. Dallas brushed his golden eyelashes with mine before standing up and stretching his hand out to me. I stood up with him and he cleared his throat.
“I LOVE ERIS FAYE LIKE A CRAZY MAN!”
I laughed and cleared my own throat. “I LOVE DALLAS OLLIER LIKE A CRAZY WOMAN!”
“Now, I have one more example,” Dallas laughed.
He seized my hand, we bolted back to the mansion, and he definitely proved his last reasoning for loving me.
END OF PART 7.
For now, that is the conclusion of the fictitious couple of Dallas and Eris. Of course, if there are more suggestions and people that would like to read more of the two, I did have a small idea for a “volume 2” of the story that would be a bit shorter. And if I was to do the second story, it wouldn’t be started until early summer because it is a bit different. All of your ideas and creative minds will make up the second half, so it’s really up to you all. If there are any parts of the entire series that need to be clarified or deepened, PM or comment and I will make sure to fill you in. Merry part, and merry meet again:)