A/N- Last chapter was a bit surprising, even for me…
NO. WAY. Andrew was SO going to get it. Lying and sending my little sister to jail like that…
Crossing my arms, I got some satisfaction from the fact that I was taller than him, and I hoped that I looked intimidating.
“So? What’s your lame excuse?” I asked.
To his credit, his eyes didn’t leave mine. “She would’ve died if I didn’t do that.”
“Oh yeah? And how would you know that? A little birdie told you?” I asked sarcastically.
“I’m serious! You know how I can like, sense when things will come right? Well, I umm…kinda saw the future, and there were two paths. I could send Lani to jail and have her live, or she could’ve stayed and died within the next twelve hours!”
Wow. He was a seriously accomplished liar. Of course I didn’t believe him!
“Liar. Get out of my sight before I kill you.” I snarled.
He turned and disappeared, probably leaving for Tian. Good riddance.
“Come on Rina, we still have to investigate and close the hole in Zhong.”
With a sigh, she followed me. And so we continued our journey in Zhong.
Rina wasn’t very talkative, so, sadly, that left me with plenty of time to think. Since I was still boiling with rage, I decided to review everything I knew about Tian, Zhong, and – gulp – Di.
So, apparently we’re all born with a power. I can manipulate the elements, like, changing the wind direction, controlling water, raising stones, etc. Rina can heal. Lani can sense emotions. Andrew…I preferred not to think about him then. My mom could talk to animals. Dad was able to make anything out of anything.
Anyway…from a young age we were able to use our powers, but over the course of the years we had to hone them to near perfection, so that we could pass the test that came when you were 14. Anytime during your 14th year, you could have to take the test. Of course, there was also school, which consisted of learning our history, math, controlling our powers, and other stuff.
I’ve always wanted wings. I know it’s not necessarily considered a ‘power’ but having wings would be awesome. Some people are even lucky enough to have wings. Like, it’s their ‘power.’ Okay, maybe I shouldn’t put it that way and just say that we’re all special, in a certain way.
We’re run by a government, but the King and Queen are at the top. King Alexander and Queen Elizandra are usually nice and fair, although every once in a while they can be quite harsh. They became bitter after their only daughter – A.M.Y. – was cast into Zhong.
My train of thought was interrupted when Rina accidentally tripped over a hole in Zhong.
Without thinking, my hand shot out and grabbed her arm, steadying her. She smiled at me and said, “Thanks.”
Dang. That was the first time I’d seen her smile. I decided that I liked it, and I started trying to make her smile.
After about another hour, Rina was cracking up and I was smiling triumphantly.
This. Place. Had. Just. Become. A. Freaking. DESERT!! I was sweating like crazy, Rina had slowed down, and we were both extrememly hungry and thirsty.
How could I have forgotten to bring food with us? HOW? Well, I guess I was in a rush to get into Zhong…
“Uh, Derek? Do you have any water with you?” Rina asked hesitantly.
“No, but we could try looking around…” I replied.
She nodded, and we split up to look for some water. After a few minutes, I heard a low growling noise from behind me, but it sounded really far away, so I ignored it.
I searched for a long time without finding any water, and I started to get bored. So, when I found a nice cool rock to sit on, I sat on it and took a break.
I thought about some stuff, jumped from one thought train to another, and I got lost in my thoughts until I heard a scream. Jumping up, I saw, way off in the distance, a huge demon that looked somewhat like a dog/wolf/bear thing fighting a tiny figure. Since I couldn’t see who it was exactly, I ran closer to investigate, using the wind to help me. And then the thought struck me. WHY COULDN’T I JUST SUMMON SOME WATER FROM THE GROUND?! WHY DIDN’T I THINK OF THIS BEFORE?!
Oh well, no time to think about how stupid I’ve been. By now I was about 100 feet away, and the figures were starting to become clearer. The demon, called Canezzlote, was about the size of three bears stacked on top of each other, and about two bears wide. And the tiny figure was becoming more distinct, and, to my horror, I realized that it was Rina. She was doing pretty well for fighting such a huge creature, but I knew that she couldn’t hold out much longer.
At this time I was nearly close enough to attack it, but my aim wasn’t at its best, and I was afraid that I might hit Rina. Running even closer, I watched as the thing took a huge swipe at Rina, and she was too slow to dodge it. It hit her, and she went flying back for a second, then slammed into the ground hard enough to break a few bones. The Canezzlote lumbered toward her, and I knew instinctively that I wouldn’t be able to make it.
“Rina, get up!” I shouted at her, but she still lay motionless.
Before the Canezzlote reached her, he stopped in surprise and twisted around, attempting to look at its back. An arrow and a knife handle were protruding out of its back, and it thrashed around as its essence was sucked back into Di. However, I chose to ignore whoever it was that killed the beast, by now I was at Rina’s side.
Her eyes were still open, and I could see the pain in them.
“Rina. Heal yourself.” I told her.
“What – cough, cough – do you think I’m trying to do?” she snapped. And I could see that she was healing, but it would take another five minutes or so for her to heal completely.
A girl’s voice came from behind me. “Is she okay?”
I turned to see one of my friends and her twin sister, Maya and Kadence Walker. The one who asked was Maya, the other one Kadence.
“Yeah, she’s fine. Thanks for killing the Canezzlote. But why are you here, and how’d you get here?”
And Maya explained everything. They followed us into Zhong, saw the whole thing with A.M.Y., watched as Andrew chucked the knife away while we weren’t looking, seeing Lani get arrested, blah blah blah.
Finally she finished, and I got a chance to get a good look at them. Kadence was the one with the arrows, Maya the one with the knives. They were decked out in demon hunting gear, basically combat boots, leggings, and leather jackets. They both had brown hair and blue eyes, but Maya had forest green streaks in her hair, and Kadence had purple highlights.
While they were talking, Rina had completely healed, and she looked ready to go on. However, we still had the problem of food and water with us, and the water bottles Maya and Kadence had brought were nearly empty. And then I remembered that I needed to try pulling water from the ground. Turns out, it worked, and I filled Maya’s and Kadence’s water bottles, then had Rina and I drink as much as we could. It was refreshingly cold, and even though we didn’t have any food, we were still energized and ready to go on. So we did.