In chapter five Relic shows just a hint of his core he keeps hidden with his sarcasm. A glimmer of the curse Meridian is under shows up here.
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Chapter 5 Black Widow Curse & The Coven (#2)
Meanwhile, just about an hour away, two best friends in their first year of college were in their dorm room. Their room was decorated with posters from all their favorite rock bands on one side of the wall - that made the distinction it was Aiden’s side of the room. Chris’s wall was decorated with his favorite country music singers. The best friends could not have been more opposite in music tastes. However, the glue that held them together was their longtime friendship since elementary school.
“Man, would you turn that crap off! I am trying to sleep here, and I can’t do it with you blaring your music!” Chris sat up and smiled as he threw his pillow at Aiden who had his music turned up as he sang and jammed out packing up his bags.
“Okay, yes I know. I am just having a hard time winding down is all. I am a little homesick and can’t wait to get home. Why don’t you come along?” Aiden asked as he laughed and tossed the pillow back at Chris’s head.
“I can’t this trip, I have to work, and there isn’t any way out of it.” Chris paused and lost his smile. “I wish I could go. You and I have some fishing to catch up on. On the other hand, I thought you and Amy might like some alone time together?” Chris was lying in his bed staring at the ceiling.
“I doubt she is coming home this weekend from her school. The drive is further for her, and I got a message from her saying she had to work. So, it looks like I am going to go solo.” Aiden was clearly disappointed at not having his best friend go along. Aiden got in bed and continued to talk to Chris in their dark dorm room. “With the holidays getting closer, we all will get to go back home soon together and have some fun. Get some sleep I will see you in the morning, buddy.” Aiden turned over and fluffed his pillow. He then lay there a moment with a coy smile to himself. He sat up, reached down on the floor where he placed his extra pillow and picked it up. “I am going to hold this against you anyway…you not coming with me.” Aiden laughed as he threw a pillow back at Chris.
Chris’s back was turned to Aiden as he lay facing the wall. “Yeah, I know. I’m always in trouble with someone,” he replied with a hint of humor in his voice.
The pair may have felt as though they were alone laying in their beds as they drifted off to sleep, but not too far away outside the dorm was Aiden’s father and fallen, Talon, alongside Luna.
“I always liked watching him sleep. He always seems so peaceful. That seems to be about the only time I feel it is safe to be close to him. It’s been a little lonely with all of you gone. Meridian does not seem to be able to remember much from what I can tell, except she is still looking for Aiden. Tallulah has tried to do readings on her several times without much success,” Talon explained to Luna as the pair moved away from the dorm.
“How do you always know how to find us or them?” Luna asked.
“I get a feeling and a vision, a lot like it was when I was a guide, knowing something without being able to explain. I guess similar to a human with psychic abilities. Have you ever heard a psychic be able to explain exactly how they know things?” Talon rhetorically asked the inquisitive fairy.
The pair only had to make it across the campus to where Meridian and her new group of friends were. Apparently, the boys she left with, by coincidence, went to the same school as Aiden. There was a party going at one of the dorms. The group was laughing as they made their way inside with Relic close behind.
“Well, it looks like she is getting cozy now, doesn’t she?” Talon wised off to Relic.
“Please, this won’t last long, he isn’t her type,” boasted Relic.
“As though you are?” Talon snickered as he poked at the boisterous guide.
“Ah, yes. I mean look at him. He is just a baby.” Relic’s jealousy was something new to him, and he was not doing a good job of hiding it.
Meridian had not taken long to get cozy with the men that passed through the bar where she worked. She appeared to be happy with this life and was fitting into it seamlessly with Tallulah’s help. Relic watched as she drank and laughed with the guys who had escorted her into the party. It was getting loud with the influx of college students. It didn’t take long for the guy who was smitten with Meridian to take her by the hand and lead her back to one of the vacant rooms at the dorm. As they walked down the hall, Relic followed closely and could not bring himself to walk away. Luna broke away from Talon and followed her husband in sadness as she watched him worry over Meridian.
Meridian and her new love interest disappeared into the dorm room, and just as Relic was about to let himself in, he was surprisingly stopped. “Relic, please. Do not go in there. I know we have an agreement, but it is still hard for me and will be harder on you to know what is happening. Just walk away and come back with me. We can go back, sit outside, and wait for Meridian to leave and then go back to Tallulah’s.” Luna touched Relic’s shoulder in a light but serious manner as she slowly squeezed his shoulder with her fingertips. He stopped, looked down, and with a sigh, turned and faced the fairy. Without a word, he walked away with Luna as she tried to comfort him. Meanwhile, Talon was standing outside the dorm to get away from all the craziness that was going on.
“Let’s just get back to Tallulah’s. We know Meridian will be back soon, so there is no need for us to be here.” Relic pouted as he walked away in front of Luna and Talon. As he walked, the sun was rising over the horizon, and the birds could be heard chirping away at those last but noticeable sounds as they prepared to head south for the winter.
“I always loved that sound; it gave me peace. Life and all the wonderful things I remember as a human.” Talon shared his feelings with his sidekick. “I am sure if Meridian were here she would ask all kinds of questions about what it was like. Now it feels strange to not have her around but know that the things that she was the most curious about she is getting to see for herself.” Talon trailed off in his own thoughts.
The group had made it back, and Tallulah was up with her usual routine of coffee and her quiet time at the table as she pondered the day. Relic and Luna sat and watched the people of the town walk and get their Saturday morning off to a start.
“Talon, last time we were here, Tallulah told us to get out and was no help at all. We cannot be sure that this won’t happen again.” Relic was walking around Tallulah’s reading room feeling nostalgic the first time they made a connection with Tallulah.
Tallulah kept looking at her watch and the morning was getting late. “She is worried,” Luna stated as she watched Tallulah.
“It is taking her a while to get here; I think maybe we should go back. Besides, Tallulah is leaving for her trip. It is that time of year again - Halloween. Luna, come with me, and we will get back over to the dorm.” Relic made Luna happy with the request. The trio were back at the campus in moments. Police and ambulance vehicles were near the campus, and a crowd of students were standing around in a street around the campus.
“What is going on?” Relic rushed through humans crowding around a horrific scene of what appeared to be a car accident.
Luna walked over, and they walked right through the crowd that was around a hurt college kid. Right next to him crying and in shock was Meridian. “What is happening?” Luna shouted.
“I knew the curse would begin soon after; I had no idea it would happen so quickly.” Relic hung his head down. As Meridian remained close to the hurt boy lying in the middle of the street, she was frozen with shock and fear.
Relic, the Fairy and the Fallen witnessed the boy’s soul leave his body. The bright, golden, translucent ball of light emerged up from the dead boy and ascended into the sky. As they looked up and around, the appearance of ghosts stood in silence watching as his soul ascended into the air and disappeared.
“Where do you think he went?” questioned Talon.
“I can’t say,” replied Relic. “He could have gone to Etheria or on to live another life. It seems one way or the other he did one of the two. If he were to have been lost, another apparition would have emerged. You of all of us should know that.” Relic added to the fallen with doubt in his voice. “The ghosts gather around sometimes in curiosity that’s all.” Relic turned and walked to get away from the madness.
Talon stood and watched a few moments longer before he followed along. “Yeah, I should know, but I have not ever actually witnessed the dark one’s taking a bad soul to the dark realm. I still try to avoid it all. I see more of the ghosts with the places I go. I feel that I can relate to the ones who are trapped and unable to make the choice to move on. I did not get a choice. However, I am a lost soul.” Talon’s voice shifted to a whisper as though he didn’t want to hear the sounds of his own reality that Warrick had cast upon him when he learned of Talon and Farrah’s involvement with one another.
As the guides and Talon walked away from the scene of the accident, Meridian was approached by the authorities and was being questioned. Whatever happened to him was quick and unexpected. “What do you think did it?” Talon’s curiosity was taking over.
“I don’t know. Maybe a car hit him or something. This is a strong curse, and Meridian does not have a clue what she is in for. If there is anything in her that is left, she will take this hard. If we don’t get her out of here, the dark ones will be attracted to whatever negative energy ensues her. Let’s go. We can try with Tallulah.” They were gone in a flash.
Tallulah had packed up her bags and written Meridian a letter telling her to get to Salem as soon as she could, so they could enjoy their trip.
“We should just follow her up there, so we can keep up. Meridian will be there at some point.” Relic was leading the way, and the three followed Tallulah out as she headed for the airport.
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