Davina, p.24
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       Davina, p.24

         Part #3 of Immortal Prophecy series by Tijan
 
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  knew that wasn’t right. She was beneath them. She had been created and stuffed inside a human to keep her powers controlled. She was a murderer.

  The Immortal laughed softly. She shook her head. “You are wrong, Tracey, sister to Talia. I’m fighting for my existence. That is all. You would do the same.”

  “I wouldn’t,” she growled back.

  “You would.” The Immortal’s voice dipped to a low warning. “You would kill anything that stood in your way of living. It is the very essence of who you are.”

  “What are you talking about?”

  “You are a vampire. You take blood from those living to live yourself.”

  “I do not kill them.”

  “You would if you were starving. You wouldn’t be able to control yourself and you would justify it later when you were of sound mind. You had to live. They were the weaker species. It is the hierarchy of life.”

  She was right. Tracey hated it, but she had killed. When she first turned, before she could control herself, and though she felt guilt, it hadn’t stayed with her long. She was fighting to live. “Shut up.”

  The Immortal laughed again. The sound was eerie. “You’re angry because you know I am right. I am only trying to live.”

  “You are life itself. You will live even if you are inside another human.”

  “That is not life. That is surviving. That is entrapment.” Her eyes flashed in anger. She drew closer, and as she did, the winds picked up. They slammed behind her, rushing past and assaulting Tracey. The Immortal added, “I am only trying to exist. That is all.”

  “It won’t be enough.”

  Others were gathering. The longer they spoke, Tracey saw more and more Mori standing around them to watch. All had fear in their eyes. All had a sense of helplessness. Tracey couldn’t stomach it. They weren’t even going to fight. It came down to her and her alone. Her gut twisted into a knot and the ends were yanked savagely, tightening. For a moment, she felt tears swimming in her eyes. This was the end. She couldn’t do anything except try, but she had to. Suhnah had taken her niece away. Tracey only hoped they were hiding the child as she stalled The Immortal.

  “But you are not.”

  She heard The Immortal, and her heart sank. “What do you mean?”

  The Immortal tapped her head. “I can hear your thoughts, if you didn’t realize it already. They are not hiding the child.” She bobbed her head down, indicating behind Tracey’s shoulder.

  Tracey turned and that knot withered and died.

  Suhnah was bringing Lily to them.

  “No!” She held her hand out. “Don’t. Run. Hide. Try something to save Lily.”

  Suhnah stopped, still holding onto the child tightly, but The Immortal crooked a finger. She made a motioning signal to her. “Come, Suhnah. Bring me the child.” She said to Tracey as Suhnah did as she commanded, “There is no more fight. They can all sense it. They are offering a sacrifice instead for their livelihood.”

  “How do you know?” Tracey couldn’t speak. Her throat was raw. “You can’t know . . .” But it was. She saw the resignation and defeat in Suhnah. The Mori vampiress was crying. Tears streamed down her face in a steady line, but she never faltered. She closed the distance until she was right in front of her child’s would-be murderer.

  “No,” Tracey whimpered. She had to try and she shot forward. She reached for Lily. She was going to rip her from Suhnah’s arms and run as fast as possible. It wouldn’t be enough, but at least she had tried. At least someone had fought back, but her hand only grazed over Lily’s leg before she was yanked backwards.

  “NO!” The Immortal lifted her in the air. She didn’t touch her. She merely held a hand up. The higher the hand went, the higher Tracey was in the air and she turned her hand. She released Tracey from her hold and the warrior vampire was flung to the ground, yards away. Her body broke through the crowd of Mori. They jumped aside so she wouldn’t crash into any of them and once she fell to the ground, she tasted blood in her mouth. She rolled over, coughing it out. The Mori closed the gap behind her. She was aware of this in the back of her mind, and she wasn’t paying attention to it. The need to try again, to save her niece, was the only thing forefront on her mind, but when she raised herself back up, she realized the Mori wouldn’t let her pass. They remained strong, keeping their backs to her. She tried to move past another one, but it was the same. They moved to block her. She couldn’t penetrate the circle anymore.

  “Stay back.”

  A hand came to her shoulder and she was lifted once again and moved backwards. A growl ripped from her throat, and she turned, ready to fight, but it wasn’t who held her in place. It was the person beside who told her to stay back.

  Lucan held her in place, but her eyes fell to the human beside him and she fell back in surprise. “The witch?”

  Brown waved, smiling self-consciously. She tucked her hair behind her ears and grabbed her other hand in front of her, pulling and twisting at her sleeves. “Heya. You’re Tracey. I remember you.”

  It was the human witch that Davy was friends with. Tracey said, “You were left behind. Lucas—”

  “Lucas put her with Mavic to train her magic.”

  “Your magic was locked to you.”

  Brown nodded, dropping her voice to a whisper, “It was. Mavic helped unlock it, and he’s been helping me hone it more.”

  “But why . . .” She wasn’t enough. Tracey knew it would take more than one Bright witch. She turned to Lucan. “Tell me there is more. Tell me you have a plan.”

  Lucas’s twin brother glared at her, his forehead wrinkling and he narrowed his eyes at her. “I would ask you to stop being insulting to me. Right now, you can stop.”

  Tracey didn’t dare hope. “There’s more than her?” There had to be, or all was lost. Davy was gone. Her niece was gone. “Lucan, tell me—” She grasped onto him with desperate hands.

  “Tracey, stop.” Wren ran up to them and pulled her lover’s hands away. She held them in her own and said to her, “It’s not. There’s more. I promise.” She twisted back to Lucan. “Do it. Now. We can’t wait.”

  But Lucan wasn’t paying attention. Brown and a man in a robe stood beside him. Tracey guessed this was Mavic. She had never heard of the sorcerer, but he was rumored to be the second most powerful, second to Jacith. Some of her dread lifted as she recognized him and hope flickered inside of her. It was small, so small, but it was there. Tears streamed freely from her eyes now. She must’ve looked as Suhnah had, but she would never relinquish to The Immortal. Never.

  She held onto Wren’s hands now. “Wren,” she gasped.

  “I know.” Wren pulled her close so their bodies touched. She rested her forehead against Tracey’s. “Just hold on. Hold on.”

  “It’s not done.” More tears. She gave her lover a watery smile.

  “It’s not done,” Wren soothed her. One of her hands released her and wrapped around Tracey’s shoulders. She held the blonde warrior to her chest and ran her hand down her hair. “It’s not done. I promise. There’s more to come, much, much more.”

  And then, a new sudden burst of wind ripped across the lands.

  Lucan let out a breath. “It’s time.”

  Tracey watched from the crowd. The Mori allowed her to see now, knowing she wouldn’t rush in anymore. The Immortal reached for Lily. Both mother and daughter’s faces were wet. They were crying steadily, but Lily didn’t fight. It broke Tracey’s heart. She couldn’t imagine the fear her niece was experiencing, but the little girl wore a brave front. Despite the tears, her eyes gleamed with a fierce determination and her hands were balled into tight little fists. When The Immortal pulled her into her arms, Lily didn’t wrap her legs or arms around the other. She held limp, making her body dead weight for The Immortal. A twinge of pride tunneled deep into Tracey’s chest.

  She brushed her own tears away and held onto Wren’s hand tighter.

  Their roles switched in that moment. Tracey was the solid one. She had
been their foundation and Wren was the feisty, more emotional one. Wren was her rock that day. She held her hand and as Tracey couldn’t look away from her niece, she continued to smooth a hand down Tracey’s hair and back. She was reassuring her, or trying, but the truth was that no one knew what was going to happen.

  Even Lucan, who glanced to Mavic and Brown. Both nodded. Both were ready, but they still waited. Mavic felt the thread-holders arriving. He knew the entire line of sisters was going to show, and he felt another power traveling with them. He didn’t know who or what that was, and he refrained from telling Lucan. There’d be questions he could not answer, but when they were on the outskirts of the Mori, he lifted a hand to Lucan’s shoulder.

  Lucan touched Wren’s shoulder, who was already touching Tracey. The Mori nearest Tracey touched her shoulder and one by one, a Mori would touch the shoulder of the next one and so forth. Tracey stopped crying. She stopped feeling so helpless, and her tears dried up. Her hope flared brighter. They were all going to fight. She realized that as all the Mori became connected to each other. When they were done, the only Mori who wasn’t touching another was Suhnah. It came full circle, rounding back until it was Brown’s turn. The last Mori placed his hand on her shoulder, and then they all began to chant.

  We are.

  We will be.

  As one.

  Together.

  We will

  cast out

  the imposter.

  They repeated those words softly under their breath.

  Tracey couldn’t help herself. She called in her mind, “Lily, look at me.”

  “I am.”

  Tracey’s eyes snapped open. Her niece was staring right at her and there was no fear. There was only happiness. Her tears dried up too and she added to her aunt, “I’m going to see my momma. I am so excited, Tracey.”

  Tracey gasped silently. Her mother. Talia. Lily was going to die. That was what she meant and she started to say, “No, Lily. Not that way—”

  “Yes!” Lily cried out. She thrust her hand over The Immortal’s shoulder. “Look!”

  DAVY

  Davy felt them.

  She could feel her sisters there. They were with Lucas, who was connected to all the Hunters before him. The Mori were as one being, along with Brown and Mavic. There were so many, but they were all needed. All against one. It was what was needed and as The Immortal turned, distracted, Davy stood up inside of her. She was pushed to the farthest regions of The Immortal’s mind, but she was still there. It wasn’t over. Not yet.

  Saren stood beside him, and they strode forward.

  They had remained hidden, cloaked from The Immortal until the last second. Everything was set in place. They continued walking forward and he knew the instant the invisible spell fell away. They appeared, a foot, a leg, both legs, the torso, then the arms, shoulders and finally their heads. The full bodies were now visible and The Immortal turned at the child’s cry of ‘look!’ Her eyes first gleamed in amusement. Her top lip curved up in a mocking grin, but her eyes trailed past Saren and soon filled with horror.

  “No,” she shook her head, saying quietly.

  “Yes!” Saren growled.

  Lucas glanced behind him and started. All of the thread-holders were there. They weren’t in their bodies, but they stood as if ghosts. They were there, though. That was all that mattered, and they were standing behind Saren. He realized now what it meant that she was their vessel. He had the Hunters’ power in him and she had all of their power inside of her.

  The crowd moved to the left of Saren. The Mori were all still connected, but they were able to maneuver so two that were forgotten came forward.

  Brown and Mavic. Lucan followed behind them. Lucas’s eyes went flat at seeing his brother, but that was a battle for another time.

  Lucan caught his gaze and wore a mirrored mocking grin that The Immortal had moments before. It was as if to say, “Later, brother. Later.”

  Lucas stifled the growl and swung his head to focus on The Immortal again.

  She congregated to them. “What is this?” Her eyes trailed over everyone, seeing the touching hands of the Mori before landing on Lucas. She jerked forward, a growl coming from her. “What is this?”

  “It’s over.” Saren drew her sword. “That’s what this is.”

  “No.”

  “Yes.” And Saren attacked, but as she did, all the thread-holders launched with her. They rained down on The Immortal. It was a whirlwind after that. The Immortal was covered in ghost forms and the wind picked up, swirling around them like a tornado. Lucas stood back. He wasn’t sure if he should wade in or hold back, but when he heard the first cry, he knew that wasn’t The Immortal. No matter how much he hated it, she still had Davy’s voice. He would’ve recognized her cry no matter how far away.

  He started forward.

  “Wait.” A hand touched him. It was soft and warm. It was gentle, too.

  Brown was there, her eyes were open, but he only saw the whites. Her eyes had rolled into the back of her mind. He said, “Tell me that’s magic.”

  “It is.” Her hand clasped tighter onto him. “I am connecting you to everyone to fight her.”

  “I can’t fight if I’m being held back.”

  “I know. I’m connecting to you mentally.” A shift happened inside of him, like a room appeared and the door swung open to let thousands inside. He gasped, but he heard her say, “And I’m done. Go. Fight. Get Davy.”

  That was all he needed to hear. Gripping his sword, he waded in through the winds.

  The Immortal and Saren were trading blows. One would hit, the other retaliated. It would repeat, over and over again. He had to push through more winds and more of the thread-holder sisters. They were there right alongside their sister. They were urging her on, chanting words of magic to her. The Immortal was growing frustrated. She couldn’t strike Saren down, but when Saren swung the sword to her head, she grabbed it and yanked it out of her hands.

  Saren cried out, losing her weapon.

  “Finally,” The Immortal growled and swung it herself.

  It would’ve come down on Saren, who was dazed, but Lucas blocked it with his own sword.

  “No!” Furious dark eyes snapped to his. They widened at his arrival. “I was going to let you live.”

  He kicked her sword away and grunted, “You were going to let Jacith kill me.”

  “Well.” She shrugged, rounding back and steadying on her feet. “I was, but then I liked your company after all.”

  “Bitch,” he snarled.

  “Vampire,” she shot back.

  His eyes jumped to hers. Shock spread quickly through him. It was the same insult, said with the same venom that Davy first held for him. He looked into The Immortal’s eyes. Davy? The Immortal’s eyes lit up. A literal light filled them and he heard back in his mind, “It’s me. She can’t concentrate on me, but I’m slowing her down. Each time she swings or tries to send magic out, I block her. She hasn’t figured out what’s going on, but she can’t stop me anyway. She’s losing her hold. Keep going!”

  He swung his own sword, and The Immortal blocked him, rounding to hit him across his face. It was a slap, but with her strength, it was a launch backwards.

  “Vampire!”

  He thought it was The Immortal, but it was Saren instead. She jumped in the air, grabbing a dagger that was tucked against his back and she thrust out, slicing The Immortal. It was going to slash her throat, but The Immortal evaded. It cut her arm instead and another unearthly growl came from The Immortal, who retaliated. She swung the sword out. It was quick enough to graze Saren’s cheeks.

  Blood had been spilled on both ends.

  Lucas rebounded and both Saren and he were swinging at The Immortal. They struck at the same time. The Immortal was cut by both, but her efforts doubled. They fought like that, trading blows, until Lucas had lost track of time. He felt like he had been fighting for hours. His body was growing weaker so he closed his eyes and pulled forth mor
e of his power. The Hunters were there. He felt them rallying inside and when he opened his eyes again, he felt all of them with him. He swung, but they were all swinging with him.

  His sword hit hers. It held and he leaned forward, pushing on it. He was going to overpower her. He had to.

  Sensing the renewed strength, she dropped her sword and hit at him with magic. “Enough!” she roared.

 
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