I expected something much worse! Yes, Samaya recently indicated that she wanted to commit to non-violence, but the survival instinct can make people do drastic things! Not her though; I theorized that she led the Fallens to believe that she was going to do us in so that they wouldn’t attack us in the process, but apparently, she had no intention to do Violet and me any harm! Instead of obliterating us, she floated us up to the treetops! The Fallens could still see us though, and all three of them aimed a hex in our direction… It bounced right off of the tree! They managed to avoid the reflected magic unfortunately, so Violet and I couldn’t leave this protected area. Her spell was effective, but there was just one problem- Samaya was left down there with no allies to help defend her!
She did surprisingly well blocking jinxes from three different directions, but it was obvious that this wouldn’t last long! She was outnumbered, and while she made a couple of feeble attempts to shoot some offensive strikes at them, it was evident that she didn’t have the will to take them down! Violet fretfully expressed, “We can’t leave her there to fight on her on!”
Before I could delve into how we could give her some much needed assistance, Violet leaned against the tree trunk and pushed all of her weight into the bough we stood on. When I discovered that this branch hovered right over two of the Fallens, I completely understood why she chose to do this move! I braced myself against the trunk as well and pushed with all of my might…
SNAP! Not only did we successfully break it, but it landed exactly where we hoped it would! Luckily, the two Fallens weren’t able to get out of the way in time, and the impact knocked them both out! The third Fallen watched the scene unfold in total shock, and during his slight pause, Samaya gasped, “You removed my protective measures!”
We didn’t have a chance to respond to her. The third Fallen recovered from witnessing this stunt and aimed his projectiles at us! Violet and I jumped behind the branch and ducked low enough to shield ourselves using the unconscious Fallens’ armor, and Samaya used her powers to create a protective orb over herself. I expected that Fallen to try to find a way around this barricade, but he flabbergasted us by cackling, “You wanna use up the rest of your life force hiding, go ahead! I can wait!”
I had no idea how long it would take for her magic to drain, but I couldn’t let someone so young tap out so early in life! Violet and I needed to do something to provide her aid, but if we left our cover, we would be done for! We had no method of combating him, and I feared that Violet was contemplating using a spell of her own to remedy the situation! I couldn’t allow her to use the last of her life force either! I could only come up with one solution for this conundrum, “Samaya! You have to fight back!”
“I can’t!” Samaya objected. “I can’t hurt anyone, not even bad people!”
“If you don’t find something to knock him out, you’ll cause us all harm!” Violet reasoned. “What’s worse, hurting him or letting us get killed?”
Samaya mulled it over for a moment, and then a stroke of inspiration seemed to hit her! She released her jinx and aimed another towards the woods on her right. I couldn’t fathom why she had done that, but I wished she hadn’t because that Fallen used this opportunity to pummel her! She dropped straight to the floor, and while she was still breathing, her breath was very labored! We watched helplessly as he knelt next to her… He gazed at us and leered, “What? You’re not gonna back your friend up at all?” I could tell he was trying to bait us into leaving our safeguard, so I resolutely stayed put! “Really? Still nothing? How much are you gonna let me do to her…?” He caressed her side, and that was too much for me! I nearly bolted out of my seat, and I would have too if Violet hadn’t pinned me down! I struggled against her grip until…
A large black bear came stampeding out of the forest and lunged towards the Fallen! He held his arm up to throw a hex at it, but the bear smacked his arm and tackled him to the ground! Violet and I dragged Samaya out of the creature’s reach, but it didn’t seem interested in anyone else! Despite all of the screaming the Fallen did, the bear grabbed him and dragged him into the wooded area!
“Is she gonna be okay?” I asked Violet as she examined Samaya.
“She will be if she can get treated quickly,” Violet answered me. She then grabbed Samaya’s wrist, and her contact list hovered over her watch. She called Lama Malva, and her image appeared above us! We didn’t even have to explain to her what occurred- she surveyed the scenery and asserted, “I’ll be right there!”
In an instant, she dropped into the vicinity! She pointed her palms at Samaya and started working her magic immediately. She instructed us, “You two need to get out of here before these Fallens wake up!”
Violet protested, “But if they wake up without us here, then you’ll be outnumbered!”
“I can handle them!” Lama Malva assured us. “I appreciate your willingness to be of service, but I won’t accept you availing yourselves in this instance! The police are searching my temple as we speak, so it’s only a matter of minutes before they come looking for you here! You can’t let the Fallens or the authorities catch you! Please go! Get far away from here!”
We were alarmed to learn of this development, and I was certainly glad that we left the temple when we did! I waved and gratefully told her, “Thank you!”
“Wait!” She stopped us in our tracks and then suggested,” Take their armor!”
We hastily stripped them of their helmets and mail, and instinctively, I took my Fallen’s watch too. Violet questioned me, “What are you doing? Do you want Birsha to follow us?”
“Yes! Well, not us,” I justified my actions with logic to that eventually came to me. “If she sees them staying still in one spot for too long, she’ll call to see if they’re okay. When they don’t answer, she’ll have people check on them! We can’t let Samaya and Lama Malva get into that kind of danger!”
Violet got persuaded by my argument, and she took the female Fallen’s watch as well. We ran down the path, and Lama Malva shouted, “Good luck! “ as we exited that locale.
The trail led out to the busy expressway, but the side of the street we were on had plenty of grass to walk on. The small field wasn’t the only discovery we made either! A compact car with a security logo on the side parked right outside of the pathway we just traveled! Violet inquired, “Does this belong to the Fallens who ambushed us, or is this a huge coincidence?”
“There’s only one way to find out!” I replied after peering into the vehicle and seeing no one there. I took the watch I garnered from that Fallen and combed through his apps in order to locate something with manufacturer’s logo on it, and with so much junk on there, I worried for a second that I may have been proven wrong! We didn’t need a ride necessarily, but I had gotten my expectations high pretty fast of us avoiding another long trek! Finally, following me sifting through quite a bit, I came across it at last! “Oh, thank god! Why would they keep it buried like that?”
“Probably as a deterrent for thieves,” Violet conjectured right as I clicked the link to unlock the car. The vehicle’s lights flashed and the clicking sound of the locks unlatching resonated! I wanted to jump straight in, but Violet seemed reluctant to do that. “Hold on! Are we sure we wanna steal something that belongs to Birsha’s Army?”
I reassured her, “No one even realizes they’re missing yet! It’ll be fine!”
Violet posed to me, “What if they do figure it out and try to shoot us down?”
“We don’t have that long of a trip to take,” I argued. “It’s unlikely that they would work that out before we get there! Plus, if we put this armor on, any of their peers who happened to pas by will assume we’re one of them!” I paused and wittingly added, “Personally, I really like the concept of those Fallens hoofing it back to their headquarters when they wake up!”
“Alright, let’s go for it!” Violet agreed with a slight giggle from my quip. We speedily put on the mail and helmets, and it surprised me how much this guise hid our faces! It was difficult to look at Violet’s beautiful visage when it resembled our foes so closely! I had to keep reminding myself who she really was! It felt strange to show kindness to someone dressed like that, but despite my awkwardness about it, I offered, “Would you like to steer, or should-?”
Violet promptly regarded me, “No, you do it!” I could sense she had a deep discomfort about our outfits, and while a part of me yearned to comfort her, we needed to vacate this vicinity as soon as possible, so I simply strolled over to the driver’s seat and resolved to make it up to her later.
We buckled our seatbelts, and then I used the watch to turn the engine on. As I pulled the lever to make it levitate, my mine tried to recall the last time held a steering wheel. I guessed that it had been at least a decade, but thankfully, my reflexes didn’t have any issues remembering how to pull off these maneuvers! As we wedged ourselves into traffic, I was concentrating so much on navigating that I almost forgot what destination we were heading to! I requested to Violet, “If you see the school, let me know:”
“Yeah, sure!” she curtly addressed me.
“After all we’ve done, why does this make you nervous?” Out of the corner of my eye, I could tell she was staring out of the window rather forlornly. From a practical standpoint, I deemed that it was better to get any ill feelings out of grasp prior to the onset of our next mission, but instinctually, I seriously hated to see her in turmoil!
Violet probed, “Did you ever wonder why I decided to investigate Birsha even though the whole world was in love with Nancy Nox?”
I hadn’t envisaged her to say that, and now my head was buzzing as to why she had brought that up! “I assumed it was your intuition guiding you in the right direction.”
“I learned about some shady stuff occurring at her headquarters from my servants, but I didn’t hire those servants. I was once allies with Nancy Nox, and she recommended this business…” Violet revealed.
“Your servants were from Birsha’s Army?” I surmised.
Violet defended herself, “I had no clue who they were ‘til I got to know Edward! You know, the one who got…”
I finished her sentence, “Murdered. Murdered by Birsha, something that wasn’t your fault!” I didn’t want her to start blaming herself for that tragedy again! She didn’t deserve that!
“Yeah, well…” She grew severely uneasy at this reference, and I anticipated her to vent about something related to her unwarranted guilt, but instead, she admitted, “He was more than just my bodyguard. We were… an item…”
“Oh!” My heart practically stopped when I heard this! I mean, obviously she had developed relationships before she met me, but it distressed me to comprehend the notion of her losing her last lover in such an abrupt way! I imagined that she still harbored some romantic emotions for him, and it made me ponder whether or not she had the capacity to form a connection like that with me in the future! I shelved that matter aside temporarily though because something else troubled me about this revelation. “Your ex-boyfriend was a Fallen?”
Violet swiftly explained, “When we first got together, neither of us were being honest with each other. When it seemed like we were getting serious, I told him the truth, and he told me his secret too. But he also said I inspired him to be a Guardian! I wasn’t fully positive I could believe him ‘til he started giving me secrets to further my mission. Then his sacrifice proved that he… Oh, there’s the school!”
I pulled over and parked in front of Monico Elementary, but I didn’t want to get out until we resolved the topic at play. I would never have confessed this to her, but a little jealousy surfaced over the impact that Edward had over her! In spite of those sentiments brewing within me as well as the anxiety of having a romantic pull to somebody grieving over a past flame, I cared about her too much to allow her to agonize over this! I put a comforting hand on her shoulder and encouragingly stated, “If these uniforms stir up some awful memories for you, that’s fine! But don’t let that fool you into thinking that our situation will have a similar fate! We’re gonna be alright, I swear!” I could see her smiling in appreciation, and it was so hard to resist the urge to kiss her…
Without being able to move another inch closer to her, Nathair’s image surfaced over the car’s control panel! He growled, “What are you two doing here?”