Shorter Chapter this time through, but what is accomplished here is important to the future of our tale. I call it our tale because if no one were to read it, it would just be a collection of words in cyberspace. I hope you enjoy. There may be a slightly longer time between this posting and the next, we'll see how the story flows from my head into type. Thanks for the Feedback and PMs letting me know what you think of the story.
Being shot sucks, I know that sounds obvious but it isn’t any less true because of that. This was the third time I’ve been shot in five years. You know of two of them and I’m not willing to discuss the third incident right now. I felt the pain in my chest when the bullet entered, smashing and burning its way through my sternum into my heart. I realized when Sindee started explaining to Marcus what had happened that my chest didn’t hurt at all. I knew healing from a wound like that was extremely difficult to accomplish even for a trained Mage. The bullet had to be removed from the body first. You can’t leave it floating around in there to cause even more damage. The next thing was starting the natural process of closing the wounds and replacing the blood loss. Repairing a major organ of any kind, the heart more so than any others, is a difficult spell in and of itself. This is when my brain caught up with everything that was wrong about our current situation.
Marcus didn’t arrive until after I was healed and opened my eyes so he couldn’t have been the source of the spell that healed me. I had no effects hanging on contingencies in the event of a mortal wound. Hanging a spell is easy to explain, the Mage must be fairly good with Time or Entropy spheres and when they form the spell in their mind place a trigger for when it is to take effect based on a time or possible event. The Avatar is a source of power and knowledge to a Mage, incapable of casting a spell of any kind. Everything clicked as Sindee explained to Marcus that she refused to lose me, reached out and pulled me back to her. I thought of her engagement ring being clear of any blood and the diamond glowing when I first came back.
Marcus and I looked at her slack jawed as we came to the same conclusion about what happened. As we stared at her, she turned her left hand palm upward showing the slug that could only have come from my chest. Sindee had truly Awakened with the powers of a Mage. She was new and needed training, but she was a powerful Life Mage right from the start otherwise I wouldn’t be her any longer. I can’t tell you if she awakened to save my life or if she had been awakened that day out in the desert, all I know is this was the first time she showed any ability with Magick. From my perspective it was a spectacular display of talent and power.
Marcus and I both continued to stare at Sindee; struck silent by the magnitude of this entire situation. She started to fidget under the stares and spoke up, “Will you both stop staring at me at speak.” She squeezed my hand tightly as she said this, doing what she could to keep her tension from showing. “I don’t understand what happened; I’m relieved you’re alive but…..” She stopped speaking as words seemed to fail her.
I quickly moved, turning my body and sliding next to her from my position facing towards her. I slipped my hand out of hers, placing my hand over her shoulders pulling her to me. Having been shot and the other things I’ve experienced have allowed me to handle even life threatening situations calmly. My pulse was racing, and I had a cold sweat on my neck, but controlling these reactions and working my way through this situation with a calm head was important. Marcus remained silent, however he did manage to close his mouth and start pacing instead of staring at her. I realized that it was up to me to confirm what we suspected and then explain it to Sindee. I reached for my Magick, focused on Prime and Spirit to detect the presence of an Avatar and her own Magick. I confirmed my suspicions and didn’t know if I was scared or elated about this turn of events but I had to tell her what was going on either way.
“I’m sure you’re already thinking about this and telling yourself it isn’t possible, but you’re now a Mage Sindee.” I said it straight out like that because there was no way to approach that statement from any other direction. Her eyes widened in surprise and I said this, before she could voice a denial I used the mind Sphere to bring our thoughts in line to show her what I saw with the Magick.
“But how is this possible Andr….” Sindee was in mid-sentence when the doorbell rang and all three of us turned to stare at the door. While we sat and stared, Marcus stopped his pacing, there was another knock. About thirty seconds later, Sindee’s phone rang and we all jumped out of our skins. She and I both recognized the ring tone which made things that much worse, it was her parents. She answered the phone, “Hello mom, are you guys in town already?” I was only getting half the conversation as she spoke with her mom. “You finally got a GPS and you’re at the house now?” My racing heart practically stopped. Here we were, both of us covered in my blood, a ragged tear in my shirt where the bullet ripped through. There was blood spatter all over the entryway wall and a pool of it staining into the hardwood of the entry floor and her parents were right outside. What else could go wrong today? “We’re in the back, we’ll be right there to let you in. Okay, bye.” And she hung up the phone as I now had the answer to my question; we had at most 30 seconds before they decided to come around the house.
This is where I am thankful that my life has been so interesting, even with things going to hell around me I still think clearly most of the time. “Marcus, please clean up the entryway. Make sure you destroy the blood and tissue entirely, I don’t need someone finding even a drop for sympathetic magic. Please put the weapon and ring in my car trunk as well.” I turned back to Sindee and we both stood up. While Marcus drew on his Magick to take care of what I asked, I quickly linked minds with Sindee again to let her see how I drew upon the Magick to cast my spells. I cleaned out skin, removing all traces of the blood and gore from her and me. I chose to simple destroy the clothing we were wearing and redress us in our swimsuits and like we were out by the pool resting. I changed Marcus into his swimsuit as well while he cast his spells. We were all done what we needed with about ten seconds to spare as we headed for the door to greet he parents. This was shaping up to be the longest day of my life, and Marcus was just looking at me trying to hide his smile now that the stressful part for him was over.
When we opened the door and led them into the living room as Sindee made her introductions. Her father was about 5’7” weighed about 140, dark hair graying at the temples. He had a firm handshake and warm smile, the kind that put’s you at ease with the person. His eyes were pale gray, shade lighter than Sindee’s. Her mother was also petite like Sindee, she also had red hair however it was more like a burgundy wine color instead of the copper shine Sindee had. Her green eyes had the same flecks of silver in them that I saw in Sindee’s. She stepped up and gave me a motherly hug, before stepping back and sizing me up. Sindee introduced Marcus to both of them and they greeted him just as warmly, I decided that I liked them both immediately.
We sat and talked with them for a few hours before anyone realized how long we’d been sitting there. I’m sad to admit that I was the one who broke the conversation with a reminder that we all needed food; my stomach growled loud enough to be heard across the room. Since everyone just started to laugh including myself I wasn’t so embarrassed. We threw together a quick lunch and ate, Sindee and her parents getting caught up with what’s been going on in their lives. I got grilled about my past and what I did for a living. They of course had concerns about how quickly the relationship progressed, but after seeing Sindee and I with each other they had no other issues. Of course they had no idea of the reality that she and I faced in our future, and we managed to not let them see how nervous we both were after the events of the morning. They both took an interest in Marcus, after all as her mother observed he was such an intelligent and well-mannered young man. The conversation was easy and the evening stretched until Sindee’s parents decided it was time to go their hotel. We made plans to meet up again over the next few days. Marcus hitched a ride back to the campus with them.
Sindee and I just sat down on the sofa in the empty house once they were gone. We leaned close, bodies pressed into each other side by side. I held her hand wrapped up in mine so that our wrists were together, sitting there breathing feeling our heart beats starting to match pace. It’s was a peaceful feeling, welcome for now. We just sat there, getting comfort from each other’s presence. I knew what was happened that day put me on a clock. At some point, not too long from now, the people who sent that man to kill we would realize he hadn’t come back and there were no reports of murder or deaths in the area. I had to find them first; or at least find out who I was dealing with. In addition to that, Sindee’s Awakening was a shock and now I had an apprentice. I couldn’t let another Mage train her for several reasons. Her safety and mine were among those reasons and with the exception of Marcus; I didn’t trust her safety and training with any other Mage. The safety issue is one of sympathetic magic. Sympathetic magic is when you have something that enhances a spell or makes the targeting of a spell more accurate and possibly more effective; items that are personal to the target or something that came from the target such as blood, hair, or severed body parts. There are ways to ensure that these items can’t be used against you once you have the training to use them. An example I’ve seen was a Mage who carried a Talisman that altered the genetic profile of anything that left his body. I power Life spell we imbued into the object but there was also a drawback, he had have the talisman on him and invoke its spell each day to make it work. I have ways of protecting myself that shall not be revealed to anyone but those I trust most. We fell asleep sitting on the couch and regretted it when morning came.
Sindee had started her vacation yesterday to coincide with her parents visit, and managing my existing clients was minimal work as I haven’t opened my new office her in town yet. This gave us plenty of time to get ready for the day ahead. After our shower which we took our time in, we dressed and got ready to play tourist with her parents. I had a couple of quick things to look into before we went out for the day. I retrieved the ring and firearm from my car and dug the letter I’d forgotten about out of the bag it was still sitting in. I looked at the seal on the letter, comparing with the signet ring. While they were very similar there were a few differences that told me that the messenger wasn’t the man who sealed the letter. Too bad about that, it would have made my life a whole lot easier if problem had taken care of itself. I still didn’t want to open the letter’s seal until I had more information so I decided to put Marcus to work some. I was going to owe him a lot for all he was doing for me. I took pictures of the seal and the ring and sent them to Marcus with a request that he check the school’s Library and Staff for any information her could find. As soon as that was done Sindee and I went to meet with her Parents. I know better than to tempt fate and chance, but the last thought as we locked up the house as we left was; what’s going to go wrong next.