Chapter 3

Chapter 3

A Chapter by Marmar
"

More troubles arise for Ish when she enters the inner-city.

"

Ishtar

"Dumbass. Stupid. Fool." 

I retorted, "Are you done yet?" The silver wolf the size of a horse at my side replied, "Not quite...Idiot. Suicidal. Masochist...Alright now I'm done." I exasperated, "Finally." Gael said, "Child, you cannot blame me. Only someone missing a brain would go back to a place where they were nearly butchered."

I said, "That was different. That guy had some weird ability where he was manipulating the shadows themselves. I've never seen anything like it before." Gael said, "Like you're one to talk. You manipulate the very earth you walk upon and the wind itself." I said, "True, but not like that." Gael interjected, "Right, he actually knew what he was doing." I ignored his input and continued, "He was able to mold the shadows into weapons to strike at me with only a flick of his hand. The closest I've done is fly or get through barriers and seals. For everything else, I've always needed to come up with a rhyme to make my magic work." Gael said, "Yes, if  your magic works, but not that I blame you. After all that was the Shadow clan for you. Spartan-like and with the ability to mold anything they wish out of shadows."

Something that he said bugged me so I said, "Gael, that Katya girl also mentioned something about the Shadow clan. At the time, I thought they had the same names, but this wouldn't be the same Shadow clan used to scare us as children." Gael said, "I have no idea as to what you're speaking of." I said, "You know that old children's rhyme among the Outlanders that goes:

Beware Beware

Children be good

Children listen well

The Darkness rules now

And if you be wicked

Then the Shadow clan shall come

And steal thee away."

Gael said, "That's just an old wives tale used to scare children into behaving." I stopped and said, "But you said that all tales hold truth. Gael, what aren't you telling me?"

Before he could reply, I heard some yelling and took off for the sound. Gael said, "You shouldn't get involved." I retorted, "Then would you care to answer my question?" Gael said, "I mean would you care to get on my back. It will be faster that way." I thought, If you think I'll forget about this because of a fight then you have obviously forgotten just who you're dealing with. Out loud I said, "Right" and jumped on his back.

When we arrived to the source, we saw a group of boys about my age surrounding a short boy and girl about my age. I got down and asked, "Gentlemen, what seems to be the problem here?" They looked to me then to Gael. After, one of them said, "This isn't your problem so turn around and forget what you saw." I said, "Is that so?" Another said, "Yeah, get lost." I said, "As much as I would like to, I am afraid I cannot oblige." I then held up my hand and ticked off my fingers as I said, "You see the first reason is that I was raised to always do what was right no matter how difficult the path. The second is that this is by no means a fair fight. A large group of young men against a single young man and woman. Finally, the third is that I'm afraid that you have caught me on a bad day." The one who had first spoke said, "Deal with the hero and then we'll take care of these brats."

When they started to move, the thing that surprised me the most were their movements. They were too slow and I only had to side step each of my would-be attackers to avoid getting hit. After last night, I had assumed that the people here were at least at my level, but as I dodged, I realized that these weren't young men at all, but boys who had never seen a real fight in their lives.

It was my policy to never fight those weaker than me, but these were bullies and there were too many to be able to grab the two and run so I thought, I'll just give these guys a light beating and have Gael protect those two. I back stepped and twisted against an oncoming kick then said, "Take care of those two and I'll deal with these children." He sighed and said, "This is a bad idea," but still jumped in front of the two being surrounded.

The one barking orders said, "Damn" as I felt the bones of someone's jaw break beneath my round kick. There was something about a fistfight that was just more personal. In a swordfight, the weapon serves as a sort of barrier between you and your opponent, but in a fistfight everything that happens is felt and done by you. It isn't a weapon that gets stained with blood, but your own hands and it isn't a weapon that pushes through the flesh, but your own hands that are crushing the flesh and bones of your opponent.

Raiju told me that the more you fight and the more you kill, the easier it gets to feel the cracking of bone and the tearing of flesh at your hands, but no matter how many times I fought, it's never gotten easier. Sister Maria would tell me that this just meant that I was human, but I've never understood what she meant. After all, is it not my own race that is capable of cruelties far greater than any Supernatural?

These were my thoughts as I continued this dance. A step there. A twist here. A punch and a kick when necessary. After the first few ones had been knocked down, the lead one said, "Damn. For now, retreat and no powers. The last thing we want is some Nobles getting here. And grab the fallen on your way out." After that some ran and others grabbed the ones who were knocked out and the crowd had dispersed into the alleyway.

I said, "What just happened?" Gael said, "I believe you have been as they say, ditched. Now let's go before we get into any more trouble. We've been here since dawn and there's no sign of him so let's go." I said, "One, it's only been a few hours and two we have to see to these guys." Gael said, "Fine, but child don't say I did not warn you" before glowing and returning into a wolf tattoo that wrapped up my neck.

As I then turned to them I was surprised that they were taller than me. There was also something vaguely familiar about them, but I quickly disregarded it as I looked at their surprised faces. After, I gave my best business smile to those two while saying, "Are you both alright?" Of course it got ruined when my blasted stomach decided to growl.

This made the two laugh and the boy say, "As thanks would you like us to treat you out?" I said, "Oh no, I don't want to be a bother." The girl giggled and said, "It would be no bother. None at all, after all you did save us. You were just like an angel." I felt my face heat as I said, "I just did what anyone would do." Before I could think of an excuse to leave since it looked like they were okay, my stomach growled again and I thought, What harm is one meal and besides just because these guys are descendants of fey doesn't mean that they're as devious as them. After all, they  do belong to the same race as Gabriel. With that thought, I decided to accept their offer.

They led me to a restaurant a few blocks from where the fight was. After two years of going through different cities, I was still surprised at the menu. I had thought that after two years I would have been used to it, but in all honesty Cay and I had only eaten in hotels and bars. The types of places that were used to wanderers and had normal stuff like stew, eggs, grilled meat, rice, fruit, bread, and cheese.

As I looked at the menu, I could not hide the confusion from my face. I thought, What on God's great Earth is a "Hamburger" or a "Chicken Salad?" Hell, what are any if these things? Not even King Solomon, with all his wisdom, would know what these are! They both have names of meat on them so they should be safe. After all, meat has never failed me before.

The boy interrupted my inner monologue when he said, "You have a strong mind." I said, "Huh? What do you mean?" He said, "Sorry, we never introduced ourselves." The girl said, "I'm Sarah and this is my brother Brendan." Brendan continued, "As you may have guessed from our coloring we're warlocks." Sarah said, "One of my brother's abilities is being able to read minds." Brendan continued, "But you have a strong mind and I couldn't read it." I said, "A mind reader, huh?" Sarah said, "You don't seem too disturbed by it."

At this I thought of when I was a child. Cay would fly me on his thundercloud then drop me so that I was forced to learn how to fly even though I could barely control my powers. Then I thought about how when I would try to wake up Gabriel in the morning, he would create a ring of fire and try to burn me alive so I was forced into mastering the art of barrier making. Then there was Raiju's spartan training with the sword, the sisters' lessons so they could pass on, and the forced lesson's from Tlapixqui. Out loud I said, "My family is...unusual and compared to them, a mind-reader is nothing." The girl said, "Have you decided on anything?"

I looked back at the menu and finally recognized something. Coffee. I knew what that was. Traders sold it all the time. Words were important to me because of how my powers worked and unlike my two traitors of brothers I had to learn ten languages from the sisters while they only had to speak two. I still remember how the sisters would continue to speak to me in one of the ten languages they taught me as we walked.

The only good thing that came out of that was coffee. When I was eight, we had run into some traders while wandering. Outlanders weren't like city-dwellers. We were a prideful people and rarely spoke the lingua franca put in place by the city-dwellers. These traders had even went so far as to refuse to learn the standard language. Luckily for us, the language they spoke was one I understood. I was able to translate between Raiju and my brothers and the traders. They were so impressed that they gave me a sack of coffee beans and a small pot they called a raqwa and proceeded to show me how to make it. I fell in love ever since.

I must have been staring at the menu for too long because they asked me again if I had decided on anything. I thought, What's the worst that can happen? Out loud, I said, "A coffee and a hamburger," but the "hamburger" came out slow and awkward. Brendan said, "Good choice, we'll get the same" before he waved his hand for the server to come and placed our orders.

While we waited for the food they asked me where I was from and why I was here. Isabella used to say that the best lies were the ones that held some truth to them so I said, "I am a wanderer, but I am here to visit my brother." The boy said, "A wanderer?" I said, "Yes. I was told that my people have always been such. Strong like the earth, but free as the wind is the saying of my people." The girl said, "How fascinating. And where have you been?" At this I smiled and said, "Where have I not been is the true question. I have seen the beauty of the deserts, wherein lies ruins ancient to even the ancients. I have seen the forests of old and the marvels of the east. All these and many more wonders have my eyes laid upon." The boy said, "You're speech is almost lyrical. Why is that?" I said, "I am a performer and a hazard is that often my work will bleed into my personal life."

At this last sentence, the "food" arrived. At the sight of it, I thought, I take back what I said. Meat, you have failed me. Staring me in the face was this sandwich-like thing in a circular shape with some dark brownish lump in the middle that looked more like beef than ham. On top of that were vegetables that I thankfully recognized as onions, tomatoes, pickles, and lettuce. I had seen a lot of strange things in my travels, but this had to top the list. Even more than that time that my brothers and I had fallen into a sand pit and ended up being taken prisoner by some half-jinn and half-human tribal peoples until Raiju rescued us. Yup, this was definitely worse.

I thought, Remember Ish, be diplomatic. With that thought, I took the fork and flipped open the top bread then poked the meat part with the fork to see if it was edible. Seeing, that it acted like how meat should act, I ripped off some of the meat, grabbed some of the vegetables and rolled them in the bread I had removed. As I was about to take a bite, I saw the looks of confusion on the faces of Sarah and Brendan. That was when I noticed how they were eating their hamburgers. They were eating it as it was handed to them. I thought, What a strange way of eating. Aren't they worried that their food will fall out if they eat it like that? before going on to bite this hamburger thing.

I had never regretted anything more. After that bite, I felt like vomiting so tried to wash the feeling down with the coffee I had ordered only to feel even more sick because whatever that was, it was not coffee. If anything, it was coffee flavored water! It was as I was trying to concentrate on not vomiting that I heard Brendan ask, "Are you alright?" This forced me to look at what was in his hands and before I knew it, the contents of my stomach was laid out on the table.

Brendan and Sarah jumped up and a waiter rushed over to cleanup the mess. I had never been so humiliated, but all I could do was wrap my arms around my stomach and say, "I think I'm gonna be sick" before vomiting again. After that, I felt my head get heavy and the ground get closer before shutting my eyes.  



© 2015 Marmar


Author's Note

Marmar
So that's chapter 3. I am thinking of keeping my update day on Tuesday, but if you guys want it to be a different day then just comment with the day.

Also please vote, comment, critique, and/or question this chapter

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Added on September 8, 2015
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Author

Marmar
Marmar

Los Angeles, CA



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