It took Doctor Halloway two hours to heal every cut on my body. When I had tried to escape from my kidnappers I had fractured my wrists. After my powers released, I had so much darkness on my soul, she said that I had a cloak of it around me. She was only able to relieve what Nergal had influenced on me, she was unable to do anything about my father or my darkness.
We finally told her that I was a demigod after all of my wounds had healed. She gave us the look that she had already known. The drugs in my system had been another matter altogether. Even with Ethan, Holly and Noelle, Dr. Holloway did not know what exactly the drug had been. Dr. Holloway tried her best to negate the symptoms with her Tama. While the other three came out of it’s effects pretty quickly, I had been dosed much more frequently and it was still running rampant throughout my system. I was told to take it easy for the next couple of days and to get as much sleep as possible. She even told me that I didn’t need to go back to any of my classes until the beginning of the next week.
Juni, on the other hand, even though the wound on her head had been healed, her eyes were permanently changed to that silverish hue. She didn’t remember the words she said to Nergal, only that he had thrown her. She continued to say she was fine the entire time Doctor Holloway healed her. The doctor said nothing, focusing on the wound opening the back of her skull.
Sam and Jax stood against the far way, their arms crossed over their chests the entire time both Juni and I got checked up on by Doctor Holloway. Last to get healed was Jax, all the cuts on his arms and the darkness that I had given him. He had sat through the entire thing with a content look on his face. Holloway tsked and tutted over the four of us until she was happy.
Sam had a far away look on his face as he stared out the window. His arms crossed over his chest, lost in his thoughts. Jax glared at everything that moved. His black shirt and jeans ripped in various places. His signature black band hid in his pocket, forgotten in the chaos. Jax’s eyes still gleamed green from his other form as they focused on me. His black tail swished back and forth like a pendulum.
Once the doctor gave the four of us the okay, I walked over to Jax and Sam. Juni stood by my side, her hand grasping mine tightly. I squeezed back in response. her soft girly fingers comforting me.
“Thank you for finding me.” I mumbled, looking at my feet. Jax swept me up in his arms in a warm tight hug. Juni let go of my hand as she moved over to Sam’s side. Her silver eyes gave her a dreamy quality. I sank into Jax’s hug, almost missing Sam’s words.
“Stupid family.” Sam murmured as he tugged Juni’s lock. “You look different. Did you do something to your hair?”
“Family?” I stuttered, pulling away from Jax. I gaped at the two. Juni smirked at my reaction. Freaking precogs…
“Did you really think you only had those twins call you family?” Sam asked as he took a step towards me, tilting his head with a small grin. There was no one else I could call family. There was no way Sam and I could be related. Sam held me at arm’s length with his hands on my shoulders. “Though, I did get the better end of the deal in the looks’ department.”
“Then you’re a demigod as well?” I asked, relieved to have someone else to talk to about gods and everything. Sam snorted and shook his head.
“God no.” Sam laughed as he released me. He leaned against the wall behind him. “That’s yours and Jax’s problem. I’m related through your mother’s side.”
“My mother?” Sam nodded his head, relaxing his features. Now, looking closely, there are signs. His nose had the same sharpness as mine. His eyes, though deep hazel, had the same shape as mine. I shook my head. “This is ridiculous.”
“I know. My dad is her older brother. We’re sadly related.” I punched Sam as he laughed. “The family line comes from the ancient city of Atlantis. That’s why water comes easily to me. You and your mother inherited the power of priests and priestesses. Your mother has the ability to resurrect any barrier. It allows her to cloak everything under her spell to hide.” The only thing I could process was my mother was alive. She’s alive.
“Where is she?” I asked. Sam avoided my gaze. I grabbed his arm. “Sam, you do know where she is.”
“Yeah,” Sam replied, pursing his lips. “I do but it’s best if she reveals herself. Echo, wouldn’t you rather hear it from her?” I would but I also want to know who she is, where she is, if she’s healthy… Probably reading something from my expression, Sam patted my head. “She’s good. Now if you excuse me, Mr. Parker’s been texting up a storm. I have a report to give.” He nodded to the three of us before walking out of the office. I spun around and glared at Juni.
“Someone has some splainin’ to do…” I singsonged, a smile threatening my lips. I was standing in front of Jax and he reached out a hand, running his fingertips down my spin. I shivered, but continued my half glare at Juni. She shrugged, blinked those new silver eyes and smiled. I was so glad she was back to her normal self.
“She told me to stay quiet.” Juni confessed, putting a finger over her lips showing me that it was a secret.
“But why not tell me she was at least alive?” She removed her finger from her lips and looked down at her feet.
“She thought that it would be worse for you to know unless she told you.”
“Then I’d be left in the dark.” The words I uttered seemed oddly familiar, as if I heard them spoken a long time ago.
“I saw a vision, the night before you first arrived, it was about you and your mother. Had she told you who she was, there was a chance that in the fight against Nergal, you would have died.” Her confession sent shivers down my spine. Her face was full of sorrow, those silver eyes showing more than anything.
“You saw me die?” It was a frightening thought, I would never want to see my friends die, even if there was only a slim chance that it would be true.
“Yes, in that vision, Nergal had found a way to drain you of all of your Tama. It left you a husk and he killed you.”
“Oh,” I couldn’t think of anything else to say, I just stared at her. From behind me Jax took my hand, the forest seemed to flow into my being, and I felt as if I was lost in those woods with him. “Thanks, for, well, keeping me alive, I guess.”
Juni laughed, her face brightening and those silver eyes luminous. “That’s what best friends are for, right?” I grinned back at her, let go of Jax and squeezed her with everything I had. It wasn’t much considering that the drugs were still in my system. She squeezed me back and we stood there for a long while, Jax watching over us, content in being near each other and knowing that we were alive. When we let go, Juni looked delighted and laughed.
“The third wheel is leaving now.” She chuckled, and took a step away from me. I looked over at Jax, he was looking at me, dozens of emotions in his eyes. Juni, whistled happily as she skipped out of the room, shutting the door quietly behind her. Jax stood in front of me, his eyes looking over me, checking me. I reached out a hand and he clasped it in his, bringing it to his cheek, closing his eyes.
“I was afraid I was going to lose you.” He whispered, his breath hot on my palm. I breathed in, took a step closer to him.
“I’m okay.” I whispered, then I lied, “I would have been fine.”
Jax opened his eyes, seriousness infused in his words, “This isn’t a story, Echo. It’s reality, and in reality, there are no guarantees.”
“I know,” I amended. Everything came rushing back at that moment. Nergal, almost losing Juni. Tears began to fall. Fat ugly tears. Jax kissed the palm of my hand and pulled me in, resting his chin on the top of my head. “I was so scared,” I hiccupped.
“Shh,” he soothed. “You’re here, that’s all that matters.” I don’t know how long I cried into his chest while he stroked my hair whispering nonsensical words into my ears. That was what I need more than anything, the comfort of someone I loved. It took me a long while before I was able to calm down and pull away. Jax wiped my tears away with his thumb and smiled at me. “You’re even beautiful when you cry.”
I gave a loud sniff and dry chickle, “You liar.” I hiccuped. “I bet I look like crap.” I pulled some of my messy hair away from my face where it stuck to my wet cheeks.
“Not to me,” he whispered. “You’ll always be beautiful.” I snorted then slowly, tentatively titled my head up until our lips touched. Jax groaned beneath his breath, his hands wrapping around my waist bringing my body closer to his until we were touching. Our kiss turned passionate, tongues dancing, panting for breath. Against my stomach I could feel his erection straining the front of his jeans. The warmth seeped through the fabric and made me hard as well.
His hands slid beneath my shirt, caressing my taut stomach slowly, playing with the band of my pants teasingly. He pulled away from the kiss leaving both of us panting and wishing for more. His hands fell away from beneath my shirt.
“I better go,” he growled, his eyes a bright green, “before doctor Holloway gets mad at me for keeping you awake.” He leaned over, smiled a beautiful white smile that shone in the dark, and kissed me on the forehead. “Sweet dreams.”
I wished that Jax had the power to make those words true.
Stuck out of classes, I did the next best thing possible so I wouldn’t get bored, I claimed the library as my own. I read books about Nergal from dawn until dusk. Mr. Parker still had not found the book he remembered reading. I was going to find that book and finally get rid of the nightmare of a god named Nergal. Holly was using the library as her sanctuary too. I saw her there every day in the alcoves, books surrounding her. We exchanged pleasantries daily. I had not seen Ethan or Noelle but I had heard from Holly that they were recovering from the ordeal well.
On one of the days where I arrived before anyone else, I sat at one of the desks, staring at the book by my side. My headaches had begun to dissipate but my powers were becoming stronger and harder to control. I focused on my Tama and brought some of it out to the surface. It was like a dark fog that sparked with midnight. It felt like my father. Omnipotent and expansive.
“Echo,” I jumped and my power sparked until it disappeared. Looking up, I found the headmistress standing by my side. She was wearing a light blue long sleeved sweater and a pair of black slacks. Today her hair was unbraided, falling passed her shoulders in blonde waves. Her one eye focused on me, she smiled at. “Do you mind if I sit?” I nodded and waved a hand at the seat.
She pulled the chair out and gingerly sat down, her legs stretching out beneath the table. I could still feel my Tama in the air, it whispered words I couldn’t understand. Seductive, tantalizing.
“Your powers,” the headmistress began, “they’ve gotten stronger since the incident.” It wasn’t a question but a statement. I felt her eyes on me and her power searching mine. The words became recognizable as they whispered.
“I can feel them telling me that I can erase memories or alter them.” I told the headmistress, the words still whispered, it sounded like my father.
The head mistress sighed, “Yes, that is one of your true abilities. We have known this since you began here.”
“It can do more than change memories?”
“According to our research, you can create, erase, mend or even send someone into a constant repeat of their memories. It is part of the reason you were sucked into one of Juni’s visions.”
“It’s that dangerous?” The thought of taking someone’s memories, of destroying all of their feelings and thoughts, it was terrifying.
“Yes, you can destroy lives with that power.” She paused and trained her one eye on me, “Or you can heal them.”