Reckless Magic (Page 35)

I heard Avalon’s familiar voice and a wave of nausea swept over me. He was speaking to my aunt about accommodations or a spare room or something I couldn’t quite make out. I heard my aunt turn the lamp on, creating a soft glow of light not strong enough to hurt my still sleepy eyes. I peeked one eye out from the pillow I had my face buried in and saw Avalon fidget tentatively in the doorway.

“Well you might as well come in; you have a lot of explaining to do,” I struggled to lecture through a hoarse whisper. In the last twenty four hours I had begun to accept the fact that he was my brother. This was the first time he had tried to speak to me himself since he told me, but I decided it was something I always knew deep within. At least I understood there was something internal that tied us together, although I was unable to put a word to it. Much like when Principal Saint came to explain my Immortality to me, Avalon was now here to explain our connection.

“You’re not mad at me?” he asked quietly and walked to the end of my bed, standing awkwardly and playing idly with the bed frame.

“I wouldn’t say that. But at least I’m not planning on turning you over to the authorities,” my voice grew stronger than a whisper, but maintained its’ hoarseness.

“Would you like some tea, my dear?” Aunt Syl offered from the doorframe.

“Yes, please,” she gave me an encouraging smile and disappeared down the hallway. “We’ll be down in a second.” I called after her, feeling suddenly awkward with my brand new brother alone in my room. Who knew what I had lying around on the floor?

I crawled out of bed stiff and sore. My knee and shin throbbed dully from the bloody gash covering them. My hair was tangled and wild, I had yet to shower; and my skin was filthy. Aunt Syl was kind enough to let me sleep through the day; I supposed sleep was how I emotionally healed.

I staggered out of the bedroom, but not before grabbing a hair tie that I worked my human-kind-of-magic with; pulling my tangled locks into some type of vice grip on the top of my head. I noticed the green dress from last night in a crumpled heap by my door; I glanced down quickly to make sure I was actually clothed. Thankfully I had an oversized sweatshirt and shorts on. I didn’t remember putting them on, but it didn’t really matter at that point, at least I was dressed. I grabbed the dress off of the floor with full intentions of burning it when I got to the bottom of the stairs.

Avalon followed me silently. On the way to the stairs we passed the guest bedroom and I noticed suitcases in the middle of the floor. I was not sure what to think of them, but was completely focused on the warm cup of tea waiting for me in the kitchen.

I tossed the dress into the fireplace casually as we walked by it on our way to the kitchen island. I lit the wood with a flick of a switch positioned on the wall next to the fireplace and glanced back to make sure the dress worked as kindle for the flame.

Once in the kitchen, I pulled out a stool and impatiently waited for the water to boil on the gas stove. Avalon followed my example and sat down on the stool next to me. Aunt Syl brought out a plate of fruit and cheese and crackers; some of my favorite munchies. I gratefully grabbed some grapes and shoved them into my mouth. I was starving.

“Amory is bringing over some Chinese food…. King Fong’s,” Aunt Syl explained tentatively and then smiled sympathetically. Great. Although I was excited for the lo mein en route, I wasn’t especially ready to rehash the rooftop battle for Principal Saint, especially when it indicted Avalon.

“So.… spill it,” I commanded of Avalon, giving him a sideways glance before reaching for some more grapes.

“I don’t even know where to begin,” he replied almost nervously, running his hands through his long locks. I realized now that our hair and skin were the same color; our noses nearly identical and our smiles the exact likeness of each other. Only our eye color was different; mine almost black like our hair, and his green like the color of emeralds.

“Start with why you have tried to kill me…. twice,” I inquired casually, holding up two fingers before grabbing some Wheatables and gruyere cheese.

“I have never tried to kill you!” Avalon nearly stood up defending himself. “I’ve only ever tried to kill him; you just give us good opportunities to attack, I guess,” he calmed down a bit and flashed an amused grin. “You always get him alone, where he is unprotected. Unfortunately you’re still fighting on his side. But I’m hoping that will change.”

“I don’t think it will,” I disagreed. “There will never be a time when I can just sit by and watch you kill Kiran,” I nearly choked on my words; realizing my brother’s true intentions for a person I had strong, but indefinable feelings for. Albeit I was not sure what those feelings were, but without a doubt they were definitely not murderous.

“We’ll see,” he argued back and when I opened my mouth to say something, he continued quickly, “Like I was saying, I have only done everything in my power to protect you; that includes doing my best to keep you away from him,” Avalon refused to use Kiran’s name.

“Everything in your power… does that include throwing me off a building?” I rubbed my sore bones to prove my point.

“Eden, you don’t have to be in pain. It’s called magic. Why don’t you try using it?” he nodded in the direction of my cut up leg and I felt like an idiot. Oh, yeah. I focused my blood, allowing the magic free reign to flow. The electricity pulsed through my veins, heating my blood and healing my body. Instantly I felt restored and rejuvenated. The gash on my shin and knee completely disappeared in seconds; and the bruises that moments ago painted my skin, vanished.

“Thanks,” I mumbled.

“I didn’t throw you off any building. Jer- my companion got a little overzealous. He was just pissed that he was getting beat by a girl. He fully expected you to recover, but you, I think, forgot to use your magic again,” I blushed, realizing that my fall from the top of the gymnasium didn’t have to be fatal. I had had the power to be just fine. “We all were shocked when you just kept falling. I don’t know what would have happened to you if that half and half hadn’t Time-Slowed to catch you; but then again Jericho got a little too excited. And if it weren’t for you, he could have finished the job, but you absorbed the majority of the blow, protecting him,” Avalon just used so many words that I didn’t understand and I had so many questions now I didn’t even know where to begin.

“Half and half? Time-Slow? What do you mean absorbed the blow? Speak English; and for goodness sakes, who is Jericho?” I squinted at Avalon confused, but he only laughed at me.

“I forget that you were raised human,” Avalon laughed again. Aunt Syl gave him a side glance, disapprovingly. It’s not like I was raised by wolves, give me a break.

“Explain,” I demanded simply.

“Ok, let’s see. Half and half is like a slang word we use to describe someone like Kiran. Someone who is half Witch and half Medium; his family specifically breeds this way in order to ensure their bloodline and their power. They think if they use the two dominant Immortalities they will stay more powerful than the rest of us minions,” his voice dripped with sarcasm and irritability. “Time-Slow; that’s like something only Mediums can do. It’s one of the things that separate Witches and Psychics. Kiran has the ability to slow time down without slowing himself down. He caught up with you in air because he slowed you down. They can only do it for a limited amount of time, but you can see why it would be useful.”

“And Jericho?” I asked, mentally ticking off my list of questions.

“I shouldn’t have used his name. But anyways, he is part of the Resistance,” Avalon grabbed a handful of crackers and shoved them into his mouth like he was suddenly hungry.

“The Resistance?” I asked; a looming feeling of foreboding washed over me. If a Resistance was involved, there was no such thing as an easy solution.

“Yes, the Resistance. The only people left brave enough to stand up to this tyranny,” Avalon exclaimed patriotically, cracker crumbs flying out of his mouth. He smiled apologetically, and swallowed quickly. After washing it down with a long drink of tea, he continued, “A lot of Immortals are unhappy with the King and have been since they instituted the Monarchy. Lucan has done nothing but divide us up and kill us off. And your boyfriend is the next executioner in line for the throne. We plan to change that.”

“Ok, slow down again. So who is in this Resistance? Are you only trying to kill Kiran? Or the whole royal family? What exactly is the purpose of this… Resistance?” my list of questions just grew longer and longer the more Avalon tried to explain.

“I can’t tell you who is in the Resistance until you join it,” he paused to wink at me and give a suggestive raise of the eyebrows. “It has to be kept completely secret otherwise they would hunt us down and execute every last one of us. I’m serious Eden, me telling you this is a gigantic risk; even saying the word ‘Resistance’ is enough to get us thrown into a Romanian prison. You can’t just run off and let your boyfriend in on all of our secrets. I mean it: mental lock-down,” he looked at me with such distrust that I felt ashamed.

“I’m not an idiot Avalon; I understand that,” I rebuffed, defensively.

“I know you’re not an idiot; I am just not sure whose side you’re on,” when I gave him a dirty look he answered more of my questions. “And yes we are going after Kiran. But it is mainly to send a message to his father, who would, of course, be our next target. The kid can’t do much damage yet, especially when he is so distracted with you; but one day he’ll hold the keys to this Kingdom and I refuse to leave the fate of all Immortals in the hands of a Kendrick,” I blushed at his reference to me; completely in denial that I could be that much of a distraction to anybody.

“Avalon you haven’t answered her last question. What exactly is the purpose of our Resistance?” Principal Saint entered the kitchen arms full of brown paper bags. The smell of Chinese food filled the room and as soon as he set the bags down on the counter I snatched one and pulled out a paper parchment filled with Crab Rangoon. I tore the legs off of the crab shaped pastry and devoured the fried goodness.

“Why don’t you do the honors Amory?” Avalon addressed Principal Saint with a strong familiarity, and slid a box of fried rice over to himself, digging in with a set of wooden chopsticks.

Chapter Thirty-One

“So you know about the Resistance?” I asked Principal Saint tentatively, not sure where he stood on the issue. He entered the kitchen uninvited, and made himself at home to no one's objections, his arms laden with paper bags of hot Chinese food.

“I believe I was the founder,” Principal Saint smiled at me widely when my mouth dropped open from disbelief. As the principal of my high school, I found it hard to imagine him plotting the death of one of its most prominent students. “That was a long, long time ago however. I’ve been able to take somewhat of a backseat position for quite some time,” Avalon rolled his eyes and I could tell that Principal Saint was not being entirely truthful with me.