Here is the next chapter in the Defiance story for your reading pleasure. I hope you enjoy it and don't forget to comment and rate when you are done. The next chapter should be out in another two days so keep your eyes open for it.
Chapter Eight: An Old Foe Emerges
The Week of Remembrance passed by fairly quickly and before Gabriella knew it school was upon her and she had to get back to the daily grind that really wouldn’t matter later on in her life. Once her mother had come back from ‘seeing’ her father off Gabriella didn’t see Anna again for almost an entire week, which was very odd considering she usually came by the house at least once a day to see Amy or bug Gabriella. She asked her mother about her sister’s absence thinking maybe the immortals were on some kind of a training regime again or just out wandering the stars looking for any signs of the demons, but it turned out that they were doing what they usually did, sparring with each other and enjoying their powers.
With no other explanation Gabriella began to realize Anna wasn’t coming around because of her, because of the kiss they had shared that probably should never have happened. She felt bad about it now, missing the spunky girl that was easily her best friend in the entire world, and it was all because she had to go and do something stupid. To this day she still didn’t know exactly why she did it, not really anyways. Anna had looked so sad and all Gabriella had wanted to do was cheer her up, and since a simple kiss had cheered her up the night before that she figured it might work for her older sister. The kiss started out simple enough but then it quickly morphed into something she had not been prepared for at the time and she had quickly pulled away from it, something she now regretted because it seemed to have ruined the relationship between the two girls.
The first day of school dawned on her with a light drizzle as fall was coming at Northern Canada full tilt and Gabriella pulled herself out of bed and got ready for her final year in high school. With her hair done up, a light amount of makeup on her features, and a nice yet casual set of clothes she headed downstairs to find her mother standing over the stove cooking up a hearty looking breakfast. She quickly sat down at the table and groaned softly when she only found orange juice and milk put out for her, the coffee pot sitting on the counter unused. Sometimes she really wished her parents actually had the need for food and beverage that way she could steal a cup of their coffee in the morning. It really was the only thing that perked her up enough to go through the motions.
‘How’d you sleep sweetie?’ her mother asked as she lifted some scrambled eggs out of the frying pan in front of her and plated them, sprinkling them with a dash of salt and pepper.
‘Like a rock I guess, I don’t even remember falling asleep.’
Her mother walked over to the table and laid the plate of eggs, bacon, sausage, and toast in front of her as she moved back into the kitchen and started to clean up, taking her time so she could enjoy a relaxed morning. ‘You excited to get back to school?’ she asked and the only response Gabriella could give was a snort of disgust. ‘Trust me; you’ll miss these kinds of days when you are older.’
‘That’s the thing mom; I won’t get older after I turn eighteen. I’ll always be that age. Do you realize in eight months I will be the exact same age as you?’
‘That is an odd thought,’ her mother laughed as she scraped the remaining eggs into the garbage, ‘Never in my life would I ever have thought that my daughter would be the same age as I am.’
‘It’s kind of creepy if you think about it. A lot of what happens with you guys is weird. Look at Francis and Lucy for example, they’re legally married and yet they are considered brother and sister. How did they get over that mind numbing hurdle?’
Gabriella hadn’t even been thinking about what was coming out of her mouth and as the words settled around her she knew she was asking the question more for herself than anything else. The moment with Anna still played on her mind and it felt weird knowing that they were sisters and all.
‘They’re not really related by blood Gabby,’ her mother said gently, ‘It’s easier if you think of the family more like a brotherhood of sorts. We’re all immortals but nothing connects us besides that.’
‘Okay,’ she replied absentmindedly before shovelling a fork full of eggs into her mouth. Thinking of it like that was a lot easier, but there was still the fact that she had known Anna her entire life and she was technically her sister legally, her mother had the adoption papers to prove it.
‘Why do you ask? Is one of them hitting on you?’
‘You can tell me, you are seventeen after all baby. Is it Michael? No Michael seems to be interested in Samantha so that can’t be the one. Justin?’
‘Stop it mom!’ Gabriella begged but her plea seemed to fall on deaf ears.
‘It’s not Henry is it? Don’t get me wrong he’s a good guy but his sense of humour rubs me the wrong way.’
‘It’s not one of the guys mom so just give it a rest!’
Her mother slowly stopped cleaning up after cooking and turned to face her daughter as the realization of what she had just said settled on her shoulders, ‘Oh,’ she said softly but quickly composed herself again, ‘There’s nothing wrong with that sweetie. It’s not like I haven’t ventured down that road once myself.’
‘Okay! That’s enough of that! I’m going to school now,’ Gabriella yelled while throwing her hands over her ears and running into the living room to grab her coat. Before she could even grab an umbrella her mother appeared by the door holding the car keys out.
‘Why don’t you take your car?’
‘It’s your car mom,’ she sighed but still grabbed the keys none the less.
‘If you can’t tell I don’t really need a car. Besides, this is the last year you will need to use one so you can have it.’
To any other teenage girl getting your very own car was a huge deal but to Gabriella it really didn’t mean anything. As she got closer and closer to her final birthday she began to realize the mortal things she had wanted so badly once no longer held the same thrall over her because she really wouldn’t need them after that. Sure some things she would still want and have a need for, but for transportation it really didn’t matter.
With the keys to the car clutched tightly in her hand she left the house and headed towards school feeling a little more depressed then she had when she had gotten up. As the day wore on the rain outside started to come down in sheets and she started to realize that she was actually a little glad she had the car today, she wouldn’t have to get drenched going home later.
She muddled her way through her first two classes, half paying attention to what the teacher was saying they would encounter during the semester and soon found herself sitting down with her friends for lunch in the small cafeteria, Brian noticeably absent from the table as he ate his lunch across the room from them. Gabriella couldn’t help but laugh every time she caught him looking at her and immediately averted his gaze as a ripple of pain crossed his face; Anna had really done a number on him. It was nothing less than he deserved though.
One of her closer friends, Janice, noticed the odd occurrence and moved over to sit right next to Gabriella as she loaded her mouth with a nice big helping of freshly made poutine. ‘So did you really tell Brian off last week?’ she asked excitedly. Rumours spread faster than a forest fire in this town so it wasn’t that big a shock that this one had already made the rounds and been distorted somehow.
‘No Anna did,’ Gabriella replied between mouthfuls.
‘It’s about time someone put him in his place.’
‘What do you mean?’ she asked quickly, putting her loaded fork back onto her paper plate with her interest fully piqued.
‘You know he was only friends with you to get closer to your sister right?’
She hadn’t realized that but it didn’t seem all that farfetched now that she thought about it. Every time Brian talked to her he managed to bring up her sister in the conversation in one way or another, something that always bugged Gabriella. She couldn’t believe she had actually liked him at one point in time, now every time she looked at him she felt more anger than anything else.
‘Your parents give you the big college speech yet? Mine did last week, told me I should start looking at ones I might want to go to now that way when it came down to crunch time I would have a leg up on other applicants.’
‘I’ve looked at a few,’ she lied, ‘But I think I might take a year off or something and travel the world.’
‘And your mom and dad are cool with that?’
‘They’re kind of hoping I go that route,’ she replied trying to stifle the laugh that was building in her throat.
The idle chatter of the table quickly called Janice’s attention back to the group and Gabriella was thankful for that, she wanted to be alone with her thoughts for a bit. Big changes were looming just on the horizon and with each day that passed she started to get a little more scared about it. Sure, she wanted it to happen sooner than later but to be honest she didn’t really know much about what it was like being an immortal. She had seen the things her family could do on a daily basis, but seeing and doing were two totally different things. And there was this whole destiny thing hanging low over them, the knowledge that at some point the demons would come back and it would be their job this time to fight them off. No small task even for someone with amazing powers.
After a few minute Janice finally turned back to Gabriella and tapped her on the shoulder, pulling her from her thoughts as she looked at her good friend with annoyance. ‘What?’
‘Isn’t that your sister?’ she asked and pointed towards the doors that led out into a little courtyard just outside the cafeteria. Sure enough an extremely attractive girl with short hair and dazzling green eyes was looking through the window and motioning for Gabriella to join her.
‘What’s she doing here?’ she asked more to herself as she got up and left the table. She pushed past a couple of new students and exited through the door and out into the heavy rain.
‘Did your lunch period just start?’ Anna asked, her eyes looking at her own feet instead of her sister.
‘About ten minutes ago, why?’
With lightning quick reflexes Anna grabbed onto Gabriella by the hand and she felt the world shift under her feet as they shot through space for a half second and landed softly on the sidewalk of a very busy street in a major city somewhere else in the world. Judging from the signs being written in English and some of the stuff that they were promoting she would guess that they were somewhere in the United States, probably the East Coast considering a clock was three hours ahead compared to what her watch showed.
‘Where are we?’ she asked as Anna led her through the crowded sidewalks towards a soft pretzel vendor and bought her something to eat and drink.
Gabriella looked up into the sky and sure enough she could see the massive skyscrapers that dotted the landscape for miles, some of them still under construction as the people tried to raise them from the dead like a symbol that they wouldn’t be squashed. Of all the places she had ever been New York was not one of them and it was interesting to see how the city was coming along with the rebuild, you could barely even notice the destruction that had once dominated the city.
‘I’m guessing you didn’t bring me here for the street pretzel did you?’ Gabriella said as she took a small bite from the snack in her hand.
‘Follow me,’ was all Anna said and started off down the packed sidewalk and Gabriella followed feeling a little confused to what was going on.
As they walked down the block the sounds of the big city crashed against Gabriella’s ears in a deafening symphony and it was almost too loud that she couldn’t hear her own thoughts. Having lived in a small town her entire life the noise of people talking and yelling, cars honking and revving their engines in frustration as traffic was at a standstill, and the constant chorus of emergency vehicles with their sirens blaring in the background was a little too much for her. Give her the peace and quiet of the little town surrounded by the woods and mountains any day of the week.
As they pushed their way through the thousands of people on the sidewalk Anna quickly walked up the steps of a small apartment building and held the door open for Gabriella as she entered the building. Up two more flights of stairs and down a long hallway Anna finally came to a stop and pulled a key out of her pocket, unlocking apartment three twenty and pointing for her sister to go in.
The apartment was a small two bedroom place with a tiny little kitchen that could barely hold two people at once and a semi-medium living room that was modestly furnished and currently covered in two dozen completely empty liquor bottles that seemed to cover every surface and fill the air with the smell of stale assorted alcohol. Gabriella walked further into the living room and noticed on a shelf on the far wall were pictures of her, Anna, and their parents that had been taken a few years back when she still lived with them.
‘Looks like there was quite the party here,’ Gabriella said trying not to breathe through her nose. In a flash the room was completely transformed as Anna used her incredible speed to clear away the bottles and spray some kind of perfume on the room before coming to a halt on the couch.
‘Sorry about that, Samantha and I had a girl’s night in last night, and the night before, and I think the night before that as well.’
Gabriella started to walk around the living room looking at various pictures of smiling faces while also noticing a small build-up of dust on most surfaces she came across. ‘So this is where you are living now?’
‘Yeah, but honestly I am barely here. When I heard this building was being rebuilt the same way as the old one was I just had to get this apartment.’
‘Why?’ she asked coming to sit down next to Anna.
‘This is where I lived with my real parents before the demons came. It’s really the only thing I remember of them now and I felt I had to get this place to keep them with me. But anyways I didn’t bring you here to talk about the past, well not that far back anyways.’ Anna looked over at Gabriella with a hard look in her eyes and the younger girl knew what was coming next. ‘Gabby I think we need to talk about what happened between us. It didn’t feel right just ignoring it you know?’
‘Look Anna I’m really sorry!’
‘Don’t be,’ her sister said quickly, ‘you have nothing to be sorry for Gabby. I’m the one that should apologize here. I should never have let it go so far and I’m sorry for that.’
‘Why are you doing this?’
Gabriella couldn’t stand to sit down anymore as her emotions were tossing her around like she was a ship on the ocean, so she jumped to her feet and started to pace around the small apartment, crossing her arms over her chest. ‘Why are you blaming yourself for what happened? You didn’t do anything!’ her voice started to get louder as she let it all out, ‘I’m the one who kissed you! I’m the one who ran away from it! None of this is your fault at all!’
Out of the corner of her eye Gabriella could see Anna following her pacing as her head turned back and forth making it look like she was at a tennis match, ‘I’m taking the blame because it was my fault Gabby, I’m the older one that is supposed to know better and yet I let it go on even when my mind was screaming at me to stop it! I’m twenty three for Christ’s sake!’
‘You’re actually only eighteen,’ Gabriella corrected and suddenly the tension was broken as both girls burst out laughing so hard they actually had to fight off tears. Sadly as the laughter started to fade away the good feeling it brought with it couldn’t stay and the awkwardness covered them once more.
‘Okay well technically that is true but you know what I mean Gabby. Even if you’re the one that kissed me I started to take advantage of the situation and that was wrong. It was the first time since I was a mortal that I actually enjoyed a kiss because I knew you weren’t just into me for my new body and looks. There you were, this sweet and innocent girl who was just trying to make me feel better on one of the worst days of the year for me and I just couldn’t keep it in my pants!’
‘Wait, are you saying that you like me?’ Gabriella asked as she quickly stopped her pacing and looked at Anna with a curious look in her eyes.
Avoiding the question Anna quickly stood up and crossed the small distance between them, placing one hand on her shoulder as she prepared to teleport them away, ‘I should get you back to school.’
‘No!’ Gabriella bellowed and planted her feet, not exactly sure what she was doing, ‘Answer my question!’
Anna closed her eyes for a split second then quickly opened them, a concerned look on her face as she gazed at Gabriella curiously. The arm on her shoulder dropped limply by her sisters side and Anna took a step back from her as she tried to figure out what had just happened. Gabriella knew she had just tried to teleport them back to her school but for some reason they were still in her little apartment in New York.
‘What the hell?’
‘My mom told me once you have to really want to go somewhere with all your heart when you teleport, maybe you don’t want to take me back home yet. Will you please just answer my question?’
The answer seemed to make some kind of sense to Anna as the confusion behind her dazzling green eyes faded away only to be replaced by caution. She opened her mouth a few times to say something but the words never came out and she quickly turned her back on Gabriella and walked back towards the couch as she was trying to figure out what she truly wanted to say. Gabriella wouldn’t let her off so easily though, for the first time in her life there was a real possibility that someone liked her and she wanted the truth about it. She wanted it more than anything else in that moment as the dire need to know more consumed her. She slowly walked over to her sister and turned her around so they were facing each other again, Anna’s eyes looking everywhere but her face.
‘You don’t have to say it if you can’t,’ she whispered, wrapping her arms around her small frame, ‘you can show me.’
The girl who was smarter and stronger then Gabby in every way suddenly found herself being pulled in as their lips met once again and it gave Gabriella a small thrill knowing she was actually dictating the progression of something with an immortal. Anna’s arms were still at her sides and her lips were locked in place as the kiss washed over her and Gabriella was afraid it was going to end too soon again. With each new kiss they shared Gabriella felt less and less weird about it and she was starting to enjoy it immensely, not caring about anything else but the feeling that was building in the pit of her stomach and threatening to boil over.
Twenty seconds after the kiss started Anna started to move again and brought her arms up, wrapping them around Gabriella’s slim waist and pulling her closer. There was a very noticeable shift in the temperature of the room as her sister started to kiss her back and the heat she had felt from their first real kiss enveloped her again like a hot hug. As Anna’s lips moved over hers, pushing them aside with crushing force Gabriella’s heart started to beat a mile a minute and she was almost afraid it was going to burst through her chest and she would die right there in her sister’s arms.
Before that could happen though Gabriella was quickly lifted off her feet and in a blink she was laying on the couch as Anna crawled over her sprawled body and planted her lips on hers again, her strong arms wrapping around the back of her head and pulling her deeper into the passionate kiss. All of the blood in her body was rushing to her face and she couldn’t believe how hot she felt, but she never wanted this moment to end. She could stay here like this with Anna for the rest of her life and she wouldn’t regret a single moment of it.
She had heard that the immortals emotions burned hotter than that of their mortal counterparts and that passion was one of the strongest ones they could feel. Her ‘cousin’ Lucy had mentioned to Gabriella at her wedding that the kiss at the end of the ceremony was one of the hardest things she had ever had to do, according to her she had to fight the urge to rip Francis’s clothes off right then and there with all her willpower. It seemed that she hadn’t been exaggerating when the kiss turned from passionate to hungry and she could feel Anna’s hand start to run over her sides over and over again, obviously fighting the urge to take it further than it already was.
When she realized this would probably end up more than she had though initially a small amount of fear crept into her overheated brain and she felt the urge to get up and run again start to take hold. She quickly squashed that fear though and began to move her hands over Anna’s body, copying the same motions from the more experienced girl. She wanted this too much to back out now, she wanted to finally have the ultimate human experience and more than that she wanted it to be with Anna. She didn’t seem to be alone in that thought either and her sisters hands quickly moved under the baby blue shirt she had chosen to wear and touched her heated skin sending chills that danced across all her nerves and caused a small gasp to escape her throat and open her mouth just as Anna’s tongue dove in through the opening.
The sensory overload was having an effect on Gabriella and it felt like she was going to explode any minute as Anna’s hand started to move upwards over her flat belly, inching closer and closer to her breasts. Barely able to breath anymore she had to break the kiss before she passed out, but it didn’t seem to faze Anna as she kissed along her jaw and chin before moving down to her neck and collarbone. Gabriella felt the soft hands on her stomach finally reach her bra covered breasts and Anna squeezed them gently sending another shock of electricity through her body. For someone who had so much strength in her body Anna was amazingly gentle as she touched her and Gabriella knew it must be using all her willpower just to keep it that way. At this point though she was so far gone she didn’t care if her clothes were forcibly ripped from her tender body, she just wanted more of this!
The restraint Anna was showing though was starting to get on her nerves, she was continuing to fondle her soft breasts but was making no move to remove the bra and get to the parts Gabby really wanted to feel touched by another person. If she had been a full immortal then she would have taken control, flung Anna off her and just attacked her with all the passion that was screaming to get out. Oddly enough some of the earliest memories she had were of hearing her parents going at it in their bedroom when she was just a toddler, the sounds of the bed breaking and walls being smashed as their immense power thrust their lust further and further until they couldn’t control themselves anymore; this was also the reason why they never had sex in the house anymore. She was fairly certain that some of the destruction in the nearby forests was directly related to her parent’s nightly activity.
It was extremely annoying that Anna was keeping all of that emotion inside and not showing Gabriella how she really felt, but the sensations she was getting from the petting and kissing was just too much that she couldn’t bring herself to beg for more. Anna seemed to notice her frustration though and took it the wrong way, pushing herself back and pulling her hands out from under her shirt and off her skin.
‘Are you okay?’ she asked softly.
‘What are you doing? Don’t stop!’
She reached out with her hands and tried to pull Anna back on top of her but was met with resistance, all the strength in her body not able to budge the girl that had become more a wall then a person. Her eyes had gone hard again and the lustful smile that had once been on her luscious lips was now a hard line as her emotions started to calm down enough for her to regain her senses.
‘I think we should stop Gabby,’ she said in a flat voice, ‘It is getting a little late in the day.’
‘What are you talking about? It’s only been like ten minutes!’ she exclaimed and checked her watch to make sure, but what she saw shocked her so much she jumped up off the couch and pulled her cellphone out of her pocket finding seven missed calls from both her mother and Erin. ‘Shit! Shit, shit, shit! This isn’t good!’
‘What’s wrong?’ Anna said with emotion now, her eyes darting around the room as she held her arms out defensively thinking they were going to be attacked.
‘I’ve been here for over an hour!’ she yelled, ‘And my parents made sure that if I was missing from a class they would immediately be-’
‘Notified!’ her sister finished loudly, the reality dawning on her. ‘We need to get you home now! We are in so much crap!’
Anna reached out and grabbed hold of her by the shoulder roughly as the earth fell away from them and in the blink of an eye they were standing just inside the doorway of her house back in Canada. The second they appeared a gorgeous woman with long ginger hair and soft brown eyes rushed out of the living room and grabbed Gabriella into a bear hug that crushed her fragile ribs.
‘Lucy! You’re hurting me!’ she yelped and the woman quickly let her go and stepped back and her face suddenly turned hard.
‘Where were you? Here’s a better question though, why weren’t you listening Anna? We tried calling out to you at least two dozen times! Your mother is worried sick and has every immortal on Earth out there looking for both of you right now!’ Lucy bellowed, catching Gabriella off guard.
‘There was no danger Lucy,’ Anna answered gently, ‘We were just hanging out and lost track of time.’
Lucy’s beautiful face relaxed a little hearing that nothing was wrong and she walked back into the living room while the others followed. Gabriella had always liked Lucy, she was funny and smart and always treated her like a real sister, where as some of the others always seemed to treat her with kid gloves because she was, as everyone called her, the miracle baby.
‘Well I wouldn’t want to be you two right now, your mother is going to tear you a new one. I’ll go let her know you are back home, so I’ll see you in the next century probably. If you get off easy that is.’
With a soft pop Lucy disappeared and less than ten seconds later their mother teleported into the room, her hands on her hips in a motherly way that in no way suited her young looks. Her face was twisted in anger and her eyes were narrowed, nostrils flared as she got ready to tear into them. Gabriella always hated getting in trouble, but she could already tell this was going to be the worst one yet.
‘WHERE THE HELL WERE YOU? BOTH OF YOU!’ she roared and shook every window in the house with a rattle, ‘Do you have any idea how long we have been looking for you? You better have one damn good explanation why you weren’t in class for your first day of school!’
‘Calm down Amy,’ Anna said gently but it did nothing to alleviate the rage in her mother, ‘I hadn’t seen her in a while; we just wanted to hang out over her lunch break at school. I guess we lost track of time.’
Her mother blurred over to Anna, their noses less than an inch apart as she seethed and pointed a finger directly to her chest, ‘You think that makes it all better? I don’t care that you two just wanted to spend some time together! That is my baby girl right there! How do you think I felt when the school called me and said she wasn’t in class? What if something had happened to her?’
‘Mom!’ Gabriella called out and her mother’s narrowed eyes quickly locked on to her, ‘It’s not like we were out in the wilds in Africa fighting lions with our bare hands! We were just hanging out at her place!’
‘There are a lot more dangerous things out there than just lions Gabby!’
‘When was the last time a demon was even seen? Before I was born! You guys have been patrolling the outer reaches of the universe looking for any sign of them and have come up with nothing so far. Do you really think one is just going to suddenly appear at my school and try to kill me? They have all of you to worry about; I’m just a teenager with no powers! You need to stop treating me like I will shatter into a million pieces at the slightest touch!’
A little shocked by the sudden outburst from Gabriella, her mother took a step away from Anna and lowered her finger as her eyes lost the hard edge they had held a moment ago. ‘Gabby they are coming back, that much we know for sure. I’m just looking out for you, you mean everything to me and your father and we never want to lose you. I know we come off a little overbearing sometimes but trust me when I tell you it’s for your own good sweetie. You’re only mortal for less than a year, and then you can do whatever you want okay? But until then I am just asking you to do what we ask.’
‘I don’t want to hear any more about it Gabriella. Now do either of you want to tell me what was so damn important that it couldn’t wait until you got out of school?’
Neither of them could come up with a single excuse so they kept their mouths shut knowing that the truth would probably only get them into more trouble. Gabriella tried desperately to wrack her brain for something to say that would explain it but after a few minutes of silence her mother just sighed heavily and glanced at both of them with a meaningful look on her face.
‘Look I don’t need to or want to know what is going on between the two of you, but whatever it is just follow the rules please. No more leaving in the middle of school, no more going to bars in England in the middle of the night,’ Gabby opened her mouth to say something about the last point but her mother held her hand up to silence her, ‘Yes I know about that. If you two want to ‘hang out’ you do it by the rules of this house. Let someone know where you are and how long you will be gone for, and make sure you are back in this house by curfew.’
Gabriella and Anna nodded gently, not sure what to make of what they were hearing. Gabriella turned to back up to her room when her mother gently laid a hand on her shoulder and stopped her. ‘What?’ she asked trying to make her voice sound normal.
‘You’re grounded for the next week,’ her mother replied sternly, ‘You can only leave the house to go to school and you aren’t allowed to have any visitors unless Erin or myself approve it first. Is that understood?’
‘Does Anna have to leave right now?’ she asked turning back to her mother.
‘I think that would be best, just for tonight though. She can come back over tomorrow if she wants.’
Gabriella rushed over to her sister and pulled her into a hug before running up the stairs and slamming her door behind her, a million different thoughts running through her mind. Her mother seemed to know a lot more then she was letting on and a lump was forming in the back of her throat at that thought, did she know what was actually going on between them? Earlier in the day she had mentioned something about it not being a bad thing if she was seeing another girl, but did that also extend to her sister? She guessed time would tell, if she ever got another chance like that again anyways.
True to her word her mother did let Anna come back over the next day, but only after school and once Gabriella had completed her homework and done a few chores as part of the punishment. However the visit was short and chaperoned as her mother hovered around as the two girls watched a comedy on the movie channels, not allowing them a chance to talk about the events of the day before. Before Gabriella knew it the time for her to go to bed was upon her and she had to give a quick goodbye hug to Anna. Usually her parents didn’t really care how late she stayed up now that she was older, but with the crackdown going on in the house she had been given a bed time at ten at night to hammer home the point that what they had done was wrong.
Her school life wasn’t any better as word of her first day absence spread among the teachers and she was watched closely. She was fairly certain that if she was even a minute late for class they would come down on her hard as well but thankfully she didn’t have to worry about that. Besides that one day she had never been late for or missed a single class since she was in preschool and she didn’t want it to happen again. The less questions people asked about her the better it would be. She had once heard a story about how her father, in one of his pervious lives had accidentally showed a little too much strength when he was trying out for the local football team and people began to dig deeper into his past forcing him to leave the town for good. As much as she hated to admit it, she liked this town and her friends and didn’t want to do anything that would force her family to pack up and move on. She had so little time with them as it was right now.
While most of her friends simply shrugged off the sudden disappearance, Janice seemed to take a keen interest in it and would constantly pester Gabriella about it, not buying the story she had come up with that involved them losing track of time. It had gotten to the point that every time Janice would mention the event Gabriella would forcibly tell her to drop it and try to change the topic to something else, but as they sat at the table during their lunch hour it was becoming apparent that she wasn’t just going to let it go this time.
‘Look Janice, I don’t know how many times I have to tell you this, but we just went off school grounds to get a bite to eat and we got lost in conversation!’ she practically cried out only to find her friend just shaking her head.
‘You and I both know that’s bullshit,’ the girl hissed so no one else at the table could hear it, ‘I watched you go out and talk to your sister and next thing I know you both disappeared into thin air!’
Gabriella shot up from her seat and grabbed her friend roughly by the hand and dragged her out of the cafeteria as their friends looked on in curiosity. Not letting go of her grip she pulled Janice down the crowded hall until she found the girls restroom and shoved her in there and checked every stall to make sure it was empty before closing the door and locking it behind them.
‘What the hell are you going on about Janice?’ she growled startling the poor girl.
‘I’m sorry! Look I won’t tell anyone, I just want to know the truth!’
‘I don’t know what you think you saw but you’re wrong. We just walked to my car and drove to the mall!’
Janice looked hard into Gabriella’s eyes and took a step closer, ‘I saw it with my own eyes Gabby, I saw both of you just teleport away! You can’t just explain it away!’
Gabriella grabbed her friend by the shoulders and shook her roughly, ‘Janice just stop this now, I’m begging you! Don’t ask me questions I can’t answer ever okay? If you consider me your friend you will just ignore whatever you think you saw and go on with your life!’
‘Oh my god!’ the girl screeched, ‘You’re one of the angels they showed at the remembrance ceremony aren’t you? The ones that fought those aliens?’
‘No I’m not one of them,’ she answered telling the truth. She wasn’t technically one of them yet at least and she hadn’t been there in Tokyo eighteen years ago. Well she had been there in a way sort of, but she was barely even alive at the time. ‘Let’s just leave it at that okay?’
Janice looked like she wanted to press the point but seemed to think better of it and she nodded quickly. Gabriella visibly relaxed and pulled her friend into a soft hug before going back to the door and unlocking it. Before she opened it she slowly turned back to Janice and said quietly, ‘Maybe one day I can tell you everything, but until then I just need you to trust me okay? You can’t tell anyone.’
‘I promise Gabby. You know I’d never do anything to hurt you.’
They left the bathroom together but Gabriella still felt a little uneasy about the whole situation and she was debating on whether or not she should tell her mother about it. That thought quickly left her mind when she realized doing so would just make her worst fears come true and she would be forced to leave everyone behind, her parents were just way too overprotective to trust the promise of a teenage girl about keeping her mouth shut. She would have to keep an eye on things herself if she wanted to keep living there for the short time she had left.
The rest of the day passed without incident and as soon as the final bell rang Gabriella hoped into her car and drove home quickly knowing her mother would be watching the clock waiting for her to get in. She did her homework quickly and tidied up the kitchen as best she could before finding her mother in the living room reading a rather large looking book while having a glass of red wine. She asked if Anna could come back over now that she had finished what she had been told to do but got a little sad when her mother told her that Anna was currently with the other immortals training and wouldn’t be able to come back for a few days at the very least.
She thought about asking if Janice could come over for a bit but decided against it, she was already making too many connections and if she saw her mother right now she might finally figure out what was going on. She had obviously seen the footage of the immortals taking on the demons last week and even though it was very shaky and a little grainy she knew Janice might be able to place her mother there considering she hadn’t aged a single day since then.
So instead she just retreated to her room and turned on her own television set and tried to lose herself in her shows, which proved pretty difficult with everything that was on her mind at the time. She ate her dinner quickly and then went back up to her room for the rest of the night in the hopes that the next day would be better than the last. She awoke the next morning feeling even more tired than when she had gone to sleep and quickly showered and dressed for yet another day of school.
During the lunch period Janice took her usual spot right next to Gabriella at the table but said nothing to her the entire time, in fact she was sure that her friend didn’t even look at her once the whole time. Gabriella took that as a good sign, for the most part, as it meant her friend was keeping true to her word so far and not pestering with questions about the incident anymore. It would probably take some time for Janice to warm up to her again considering she probably felt a little hurt that Gabriella had out right refused to tell her anything at all, but it was really the only thing she could do. The world knew the immortals were out there but had no actual information on them and her parents and Erin wanted to keep it that way, it allowed them to do what they needed to do without someone looking over their shoulders all the time.
When she had told Janice that she might be able to tell her the truth one day she had meant it, and if that time ever came she would be completely honest about everything. She wasn’t sure if that day would ever actually come though considering she had all the time in the world where as Janice didn’t. Fifty years from now Janice would be old and frail but Gabriella would still be the same as she was now, young and strong. Well at least she hoped anyways. If the demons came back anytime in the near future then it changed everything and there was no guarantee she would live through it. The only thing that could kill an immortal was a demon or another immortal or their weapon. By all technicalities a mortal could kill one of them if they somehow managed to get their hands on one of their weapons and take them by surprise. It would have to be a perfect storm of mishaps though for someone to pull that off.
She hated thinking like that, it scared her to death but there was almost no avoiding it. At some point in her life she would fight alongside her family and decide the fate of humanity once and for all and they all knew some of them wouldn’t make it to the end of the war that was coming. The twelve original immortals had one by one fallen either to the demons or to The Betrayer and there were only two of them left alive now, her father and Erin. That had only been the tip of the iceberg though and from what little information she had been able to glean from her parents conversations with the others what faced them the next time would be a whole lot worse. The demons wouldn’t make the same mistake twice and this time around they would come with all they had in order to win.
The weekend came and passed and Gabriella still hadn’t heard from Anna when the last day of her grounding finally came around. When she had woken up that morning her mother informed her that she and Erin were going to check in on the others and make sure everything was going okay so when she got home she wouldn’t be there. She let Gabriella know that she trusted her to spend the last night of her punishment at the house and if she found out she had broken the rules the next grounding would be for a full month.
At this point Gabriella just wanted it to end so she assured her mother there was no problem with it and she wouldn’t let her down. It would just be nice to have the place to herself for a little while tonight, for the last week it always felt like someone was watching her every moment of the day. So feeling a little happier today then she had in a while she ate the breakfast her mother cooked for her and even helped herself to seconds of everything before grabbing her bag and heading to school.
The second week of a new school year was her least favourite time of the year because it meant that things were going to get more difficult very quickly. The teachers here tended to ease the kids back into their school work in the first week only giving them light homework and keeping the lessons pretty simple, mostly a recap of what they should have learned the year before. But once they had gotten through all that stuff they flung them right into the new material, the workload doubling seemingly overnight and it was pretty hard for her to adjust as quickly as she needed to. She wasn’t the only who seemed to hate this time of year either and when she pulled into the parking lot at the school and walked in the side entrance most of the students she passed had grim looks on their faces as they headed to their first classes of the day.
With a bit of bad luck her first class of the day proved to be math, a subject she had always struggled with. Having to do it only an hour after she had woken up with equations she had never even heard of before was a nightmare and she mostly just muddled her way through the work like a blind man trying to find a light switch. It was redundant with the sophisticated calculators and computing programs that were out now a day, she didn’t understand why you needed to learn how to solve the problems the long way.
Her second class was an elective, theater, so it was a hundred times easier to deal with a nice little break before lunch started. It’s not that she liked acting or anything, she just saw it as an easy A that would only cause her a little bit of embarrassment when the class did an end of semester play, probably something written by Shakespeare. She would probably just pick up a minor roll and go through the motions when it came time so she wasn’t too concerned with it, but she did hope her parents didn’t decide to bring out the whole family to see it again like they had a few years back. Having them cheer and holler every time she was on stage was pretty annoying especially considering she didn’t have a single line the entire play.
When lunch finally came Gabriella sighed in relief and made her way to the now busy cafeteria to get something to eat. There didn’t appear to be anything new on the menu that she wanted to try so she fell on her trusty standby, the poutine and joined her friends as they chatted about random things in loud tones. When she had eaten nearly half of the large serving she had been given Janice turned towards her for the first time since their little talk and smiled.
‘So you hear the rumour going around?’ she asked.
With her mouth full of fries, gravy and cheese curds she shook her head, not really caring what the new gossip of the day was. One thing she had come to hate about high school was the rumour mill that seemed to constantly churn out bogus information that was then tossed around the school with little regard to the person or persons they concerned. On more than one occasion she had found herself the subject of some pretty dumb comments but she merely brushed them off and moved on with her life.
‘Sounds like Brian tried asking out Beth the other day and she shot him down saying the same thing Anna did! Must have hurt like hell because he didn’t even show up to school today.’
‘I don’t really care about him anymore,’ she replied and didn’t let herself scan the room for his face, ‘He’s not worth it.’
‘You got that right,’ her friend laughed and with all the speed she could muster tried to steal a couple of fries from her plate. Gabriella quickly grabbed her wrist, her fingers just inches from the steaming fries. Janice shot her a surprised look but found it mirrored back in Gabriella’s face as she had just surprised herself. She was nowhere near as fast as the others but that had been pretty damn fast by human standards. Quickly composing herself she threw her friend a look that said ‘forget what you just saw’ and was happy when Janice just nodded her head and then grabbed the fries anyways before turning back to the rest of the group.
‘What’s this about a party?’ Janice asked trying to catch up on the conversation. One of their friends filled her in with the details and she then turned back to Gabriella with an impish grin, ‘Sounds like fun eh? Are you going?’
‘No way,’ Gabriella answered, ‘I’m just getting off a grounding I don’t need to give my mom a reason to do it again.’
‘Oh come on Gabby! It’s one little party, how much trouble can you get into?’
‘You’d be surprised,’ she admitted and they both giggled for a minute. It felt great to have her friend back again and she hadn’t realized she missed their conversations. As the lunch hour progressed Gabriella found herself more engaged in the conversations at the table and even made plans to go see a movie with Janice in a few days, a girl’s night out that they both probably needed.
Since they were in the same class in the next block Janice and Gabriella got up from the table at the same time to hit the lockers before the bell rang and pandemonium ensued as every one scrambled to get to where they needed to be. They walked over to the large garbage cans near the doors and tossed their trash away and it was at that exact same moment that Gabriella realized something was wrong when a soft pop sounded behind her. There was no way in hell her family would be so stupid to teleport into the middle of her school with so many people looking so it had to be someone who wasn’t supposed to be there.
Using the small amount of training her parents had actually given her for such an occasion she pushed Janice away as the gasp of the students seeing the person appear rippled through the cafeteria. Reaching under her shirt to the middle of her back she wrapped her fingers around the demon bone hilt of the dagger Anna had made for her when she had become an immortal, pulling it from the concealed sheath and spinning around with it raised above her head. The dagger was made from a splinter of Anna’s first immortal weapon that had been shattered in a training match against one of the others and she had used the sharpest piece to craft Gabriella a weapon she could use to protect herself if she needed to.
Standing before her in gleaming golden armour was a gorgeous woman with long golden blonde hair and holding a large golden sword in her right hand. The woman was covered from head to toe in both golden and black blood and Gabriella quickly realized she had recently been fighting. The images of her family flashed in her head and she wondered whose blood was on this woman’s skin. Even though she knew she couldn’t take this woman in an actual fight the rage that was building up inside her took control and she rushed at the woman, bringing the dagger down with all the strength she had hoping for a lucky hit. The intruder seemed to expect the weak attack though and easily blocked it with the edge of her sword before leaping slowly through the air and landing on her feet softly a few feet away.
‘So it’s true then,’ the woman said calmly, her voice a little thick as if her throat was sore, ‘a child of immortal parents is real!’
The crowd of students that had swelled with the arrival of the strange woman began to quietly murmur between themselves and Gabriella knew they were making the connection between what this woman was wearing and wielding and the footage they had seen not long ago of the immortals fighting the demons on the streets of Tokyo. Even a few faculty members that had been present in the lunch room when she appeared seemed to be stunned beyond words with what they were seeing. Over the course of seven seconds Gabriella’s normal life had come crashing down around her.
‘I am Andromeda, wife to Ares and fourth born!’ she announced, ‘And I surrender myself to you, child of Gabrielle and Amy!’
Andromeda fell to one knee and looked at the ground as she held her sword out towards Gabriella with both hands in a non-threatening manner. Gabriella was stunned with this turn of event and found she couldn’t move a muscle in any direction as her mind was racing to find an explanation. This was the wife of The Betrayer! Why the hell was she surrendering to her of all people? She was nothing but a mortal right now!
‘What’s going on Gabby?’ Janice asked from her side having picked herself up from the ground where her friend had just tossed her a second ago. The sound of her voice pushed Gabriella into action and she reached into her pocket and pulled out her cellphone, hitting the quick dial for her mom’s phone.
There was only reason her mother had a cellphone and it was just in case Gabriella needed to contact her in an emergency, so it only took half a ring before her mother answered. ‘What’s going on baby?’ she asked with concern.
‘Andromeda just appeared at my school,’ she breathed and before the words had even fully left her mouth there was another soft pop as her mother, Erin, and Anna all appeared from thin air in their gleaming golden armour and weapons held at the ready.
‘Are you okay Gabriella?’ Erin asked never taking her eyes off the woman still kneeling at her feet.
‘She surrendered,’ she replied numbly and in an instant her mother and Erin grabbed hold of Andromeda by the shoulders and teleported away just as Anna grabbed her by the hand, their fingers interlacing as she brought her back home.
The minute they appeared in her living room Lucy appeared in front of them encased in her own armour and holding a golden sword with a grim look on her face. ‘The rest have gathered in James’s realm with the traitor now, you and I are supposed to stay with Gabriella and make sure she remains safe,’ she said to Anna who just nodded her head.
Feeling a little overwhelmed Gabriella dropped her dagger on the floor and walked into the kitchen to sit down at the table as her legs threatened to give out on her. Both Lucy and Anna followed her into the kitchen, flanking her on either side no matter what she was doing, an action that would normally annoy Gabriella but at this moment she just didn’t care about it. Her mother had been right; it seemed she did need to be protected at all times for some reason. If Andromeda could just drop in on her at school like that then other things that wouldn’t surrender could as well.
‘Is it true she really surrendered to you?’ Anna asked softly after a few minute and all Gabriella could do was nod with her eyes closed. ‘That can’t be a good sign.’
‘What do you mean?’ Lucy asked her sister.
‘Think about it, why would one of our enemies just surrender like that out of the blue? She’s definitely up to something!’
Before they could talk anymore about it there was suddenly a loud knock on the front door and Gabriella could hear Lucy and Anna run out of the room at high speeds and open the door, dragging someone forcibly into the house. A terrified girlish scream shot through the ground floor and Gabriella rushed into the living room to find both of her sisters holding Janice against the wall, the tip of their swords pointing directly at her throat.
‘It’s just Janice! Let her go!’ she yelled but they didn’t budge, ‘Anna! You know who she is; she’s your friend too!’
‘She’s right Lucy, let her down,’ Anna sighed and together they both let go of her friend and lowered their weapons. Gabriella quickly rushed over to her friend and pulled her into a tight hug as tears ran down her face from the harrowing ordeal.
‘What are you doing here Janice?’ she asked softly.
‘I wanted to make sure you were okay,’ she replied wiping away some of her tears as they broke the hug. Gabriella helped her friend into the kitchen and pulled a glass out of the cupboard and filled it with some juice before handing it to her, both of the immortals standing close beside her the whole way.
‘I’m safe, as you can see,’ she said pointing to her two body guards.
‘Are they angels?’ Janice asked meekly as she clutched onto the glass in her shaking hands.
‘No, not angels.’
‘Gabby I don’t think it’s wise to talk about this,’ Anna warned her but she brushed it off.
‘The harms already been done Anna, the whole school and in a few seconds the whole town is going to know what happened there. So no Janice, they are not angels but they are the same type of people you saw in that video.’
‘You guys fought the demons?’ she asked excitedly but neither of them answered.
‘No they weren’t there for that, but my mom and dad were. Look I really shouldn’t say more than that okay, the more you know the more danger you will be in.’
‘From that woman in the cafeteria?’
‘There’s another one like her, the one that jumped through the gate at the end of that video is her husband.’
‘Gabby enough please,’ Lucy said and placed her hand on her shoulder squeezing gently. Gabriella figured she had probably said too much about it already so she nodded and tried to change the subject to something that wouldn’t get her into so much trouble.
‘What was happening at the school?’ she asked.
‘When you disappeared I ran out to my car to hoping to find you here so I don’t really know too much. But people were talking and a few of the teachers were yelling for someone to call the police so I think you will have a more visitors in a few minutes.’
Sure enough they could already hear the police sirens blare up and start to get closer, but thankfully her mother appeared again and she would hopefully know what to do. As soon as she appeared though her mother pulled Gabriella out of her chair and hugged her tightly, kissing her on the cheek a couple dozen times as she repeatedly told her she loved her more than life.
‘What’s happening Amy?’ Lucy asked impatiently.
‘Andromeda won’t talk unless it’s to Gabby so I came to get her.’
‘You can’t be serious!’ Anna burst out and moved closer to Gabriella in a defensive stance, ‘She just wants to kill her!’
‘I don’t really think so,’ her mother answered firmly, ‘She could have done that at the school but chose instead to surrender herself. Gabby will have all of us up there to protect her so I believe it is safe.’
‘What about this one?’ Lucy asked pointing to Janice who was staring wide eyed at Gabriella’s mother with her mouth hanging open.
‘Janice? What the hell are you doing here?’
‘She came to see if Gabby was safe,’ Anna answered sourly, still not okay with what her mother was suggesting. There was a loud bang on the door and someone yelled out police at the top of their lungs and before she knew what was happening she was standing in the middle of an underground cove with a small but beautiful lake in the middle of the cavern that surrounded them.
Gabriella saw her entire family standing in a circle around Andromeda who had been relieved of her weapon and was watching every move the young girl made with wide eyes. Among the crowd of beautiful people one man stood out from the rest and Gabriella felt herself running towards him with open arms, jumping up and planting a big kiss on his hard cheek with a giggle.
‘When did you get back daddy?’ she asked happily hugging him with everything she had.
‘Just now, there was no way I was going to stay out there on the fringes with what happened at your school,’ he smiled and kissed her on the forehead before adding, ‘I missed you sweetie.’
‘I missed you too!’ she squealed like a total daddy’s girl, which wasn’t far from the truth.
There was another soft pop and Anna appeared at her spot in the circle and quickly said, ‘Janice is safe and sound in my apartment right now.’
‘Isn’t that kidnapping?’ Richard, a tall and very buff young man with sandy brown hair and an infectious smile and dimples asked. He was known as the prankster of the group and Gabriella had fell prey to some of his more memorable jokes on a few occasions.
‘I couldn’t very well leave her at the house for the cops to find now could I?’ Anna asked, ‘The government is desperate for any information about us and who knows what they would do with her.’
The thought sent a shiver down Gabriella’s spine as it just hit her for the first time. She never saw the government as an evil entity before but the demon attack all those years ago had rattled them and they found they couldn’t even fight back against them. Then suddenly a couple of people show up and in a half an hour shut down the gates and sent the demons back to where they came from before vanishing back into thin air, so of course they would want to know who they were and if it meant saving billions of lives they would do whatever it took to find out.
‘How did you do it?’ Andromeda suddenly asked softly and every eye in the realm snapped to her as a few of the immortals brandished their weapons.
Her father dropped the hug and walked back into the circle, coming closer to the woman who looked a little scared by the group that surrounded her. ‘How did I do what?’ he asked coldly.
‘Father a child Gabrielle! How did you, an immortal father a child? It’s supposed to be impossible.’
‘Don’t worry about how it happened sister,’ Erin said suddenly and moved next to James with a hard look in her eyes, ‘You have seen the child again so now tell us what you are doing here!’
Andromeda’s golden brown eyes passed over the crowd of immortals until finally stopping on Gabriella who was half hiding behind her mother. As soon as she realized she was being stared at she curled up inside herself and became a shy child again, hiding her entire body behind that of her mother’s hoping for protection while silently peering over her shoulder at the person who made her nervous.
‘You are wise to hide behind your mother child,’ she spoke gently, ‘if there is anyone that can protect you it would be her. Did she ever tell you that she saved my life once? Well she did many years ago and I am forever in her debt for that, so I would never hurt her child. Come closer.’
Gabriella looked over at Anna who was shaking her head from side to side warning her not to do it but her mother gently stepped aside and whispered that she was safe and she couldn’t hurt her. With shaky steps she moved past her mother until she was next to her father, using all the confidence she had in her to stand apart from him and not behind him.
‘What do you want with me?’ she asked.
‘I bring a warning to you in return for what your mother did for me,’ she answered, ‘Ares is on the move, destroying planets on the very edge of the universe. He is now the champion of the Dark God and plots his attack on earth in revenge for what happened last time.’
‘We’ve been all around the edge of the universe and have seen no signs of the demons or Ares!’ her father said loudly.
‘I know, over the past eighteen years I have watched you from afar and avoided confronting you at all costs. When Ares fled like the coward he really is I went off in search of him, but for the longest time all I could find was the destruction he left in his wake. That is until three days ago when I ran into him on the latest planet that fell before his armies. I barely made it out of there with my life and I tracked you down to warn you of what he is planning.’
‘If this happened three days ago then why did it take you so long to come to us?’ Francis asked, a strong but book wormy kind of guy that was the husband of Lucy.
Again Andromeda answered the question but directed it at Gabriella instead of the others as a whole, ‘There is only one thing Ares fears child, do you know what that is?’
‘No he is far too arrogant of a man to fear someone he believes he had beaten in battle, even though it was he who was bested by Gabrielle. He fears only you child.’
‘The Betrayer knows of Gabriella’s existence?’ Amy roared and most of the others yelled out similar things and suddenly Gabriella was pulled back out of the circle as half the members of the group stood between her and the traitor.
‘Yes but I don’t know how he learned of her. We didn’t really talk much when I saw him and I was just trying to flee for my life to be honest. He wants her dead though, that much I am certain of! When he makes his move he will hit you with everything he has under his command so you must be prepared. The child’s life is too precious and she must be kept alive at all costs. If she is truly the child of two immortals, which anyone can easily see, then she will be the most important person to ever live.’
‘Anna get her out of here!’ her father growled.
Her sister reached out her hand towards Gabriella but Andromeda spoke before she could make contact, ‘Wait,’ she said and slowly, with her hands high in the air walked towards the wall of immortals protecting the girl. Gabriella didn’t know exactly why she did it but she pushed herself between Anna and Lucy until she was standing shoulder to shoulder with them and in plain view of the woman. ‘It has been my honour to meet you Gabriella, daughter of Gabrielle and Amy. I pledge my life to your protection.’ Andromeda got down onto both knees and pressed her forehead to the smooth ground in a sign of reverence.
Before Gabriella could do or say anything Anna touched her shoulder and they left the sanctuary together, landing softly in the living room of her small apartment in New York a moment later. Janice was suddenly hugging her, taking the girl by surprise as she had to take a step back with her left leg to make sure she didn’t fall over.
‘I’m so glad you’re safe!’ she gushed, ‘I was afraid I would never see you again!’
‘I’m okay Janice,’ she said prying the girl off her.
A half a second later her mother and father appeared in the now crowded room and gently hugged their daughter, kissing her on the cheek. Janice, who was not used to people just popping in like that, jumped back a good three feet until her back hit the wall and knocked a picture off. Before the swear word was even off her lips Anna quickly jumped in and caught it before it had fallen more than a foot, putting it back in its spot and making sure it was just perfectly placed.
‘What’s going to happen now?’ she asked her father.
‘We’re going to have to see if what Andromeda is telling us is the truth,’ he answered, ‘We’re going to head out to the planets she was talking about.’
‘That’s too dangerous!’ she yelled louder than she had meant to.
‘All but a few of us are going to go, safety in numbers after all,’ her mother answered, ‘It’s been decided that Anna and Samantha are going to stay on earth and make sure you are safe. You can’t go back home so you will stay here with your sister while Samantha patrols the world looking for any sign of the demons returning.’
‘Why can’t you two stay?’ she asked as tears started to form in the corners of her eyes.
‘Gabby your mom and dad are two of the three most experienced fighters we have right now so they need to go with the others,’ Anna told her gently, coming up and hugging her from behind, ‘They won’t be gone for long sweetie, we just need to know what we are up against.’
‘What about me? Am I going back home?’ Janice asked from the wall that she was leaning up against.
Gabriella’s mother turned towards the mortal girl and walked over to her, ‘I know this must be really hard for you right now Janice, but it isn’t safe for you at home anymore either. You know too much and if the government finds out they will question you relentlessly.’
‘I won’t tell them anything! I swear!’
‘I know you won’t, but that’s not why you can’t go home. The reason we were created was to save every human life we can and we don’t want to see you get hurt because of us. You will stay with Anna and Gabriella for now until we can think of something better for you.’
Both her mother and father moved back over to Gabriella and pulled her into a tight family hug as they quickly said their goodbyes, making sure she knew it wouldn’t be for very long. Gabriella was in full on break down mode now and could barely see through her tears as she struggled to hold onto her parents with all her strength, but it wasn’t enough and they gently pulled themselves free and said one last ‘I love you’ before teleporting away leaving her, Anna, and her friend Janice behind.