Previously, Elektra’s father,Kratos, consents to join the quest to find Elektra’s son, Rory. It is decided that Rory has been taken to Mt. Orion to the west, where Rurik’s mother, a member of a witches clan, lives. They will visit Rubeus, Elektra’s youngest brother, who served in the Hagen Army in that region, fighting witches and demons.
Rubeus and his wife lived about halfway between Mother and Father’s homestead and the Orionus peninsula. Mother had stayed behind to take care of the farm and the animals, but she sent along her books of spells and summonings for angels. She also gave us a large pouch of ingredients we might need. Father had packed weapons to fight demons. Over the years he had collected and traded for rare weapons and talismans to kill and ward off supernatural creatures. I still had trouble processing the fact that our parents had become demon hunters! Our family had always hunted for food, but demons? It was hard to take it all in.
When we arrived, Rubeus’ wife, Enya, greeted us with a chilly smile. She knew if we were all here we needed help from Rubeus. She didn’t like to share her husband, and she didn’t much care for our family. I didn’t blame her, really. I couldn’t fault her for wanting to keep my brother away from us. Their two small children, Ithan and Rosa, hid behind Enya’s legs sneaking peeks at us. Tilliam grabbed Ithan and swung him up high in the air above his head looking straight into his face, and said, “Hi Ithan, what have you been up to?” Ithan let out a scream, and Tilliam swung him back down and ruffled his hair.
“Don’t do that, Uncle Tilliam, you know how it scares me,” said Ithan.
“And how are you today, Miss Rosa? Beautiful as ever, I see.”
“Hi, Uncle Tilliam. Would you like to see my new dolly?” Rosa pushed the doll out in front of her to show Tilliam.
Enya showed us into the house, and we sat at the kitchen table to wait for Rubeus.
“Rubeus will be in shortly, he’s finishing chores.”
She set two pitchers of ale onto the table, then took the children outside to play.
“Friendly old goat, isn’t she?” I said.
“She’s got her reasons. Pass me a pint of ale, will you, Elke?” said Uzziah.
Rubeus walked in the door wiping his face with a towel, and a big smile on his face. He was lean and rugged, his brown hair cut short, and his upper lip sported a thick mustache. His chin was clean-shaven and his hazel-green eyes were warm and inviting. Out of all of my brothers, he looked the most like Kratos. It had been ten years since I had seen him, he had been sixteen and I was eighteen. My little brother had grown up.
He sat down and poured a glass of ale, taking a long draw that left bubbles of foam on his mustache.
“It must be serious, you brought along the warrior princess,” he said with a grin, flashing me a teasing smile. “Hello, Elektra, it has been some time since I’ve seen your charming face. What’s with the bruises on your neck and cheek?”
“I got in a tussle with the prince of darkness a few days ago. Charming wife you have, brother, and beautiful children, too.”
“I’d like to keep it that way,” he said a bit too seriously, “Now bring me up to speed on why all of you are here.”
After telling him the story, he sat back in his chair, dumbfounded.
“You will risk your lives traveling those mountains. Your best bet is Mt. Orion to find Rurik’s family. The mountain is steep and treacherous, and is surrounded by ancient magic and supernatural powers. I have friends that can help you; soldiers of the Hagen Army who are still guarding the mountain. The biggest hurdle to finding the caves where they live is a deep chasm with only a long swinging footbridge to get you across. They will send out demons and spells to stop you, but if you can cross that bridge they will be defenseless against hand-to-hand combat with warriors of your skill level. With demons, you have to cut off their heads, or trap them and recite an exorcism to expel the demon from the body. I trust Mother has equipped you with this kind of knowledge?”
“Yes, she has given us many things to help us combat witchery and demons,” said Tilliam.
“You can stay the night, but must leave by morning. Enya doesn’t want me involved in your quest. I can’t go with you, but can help you in other ways. If anyone can bring Rory home, it will be you. I would like to have the chance to meet my nephew.”
We shared supper and played with the children. When everyone had gone to bed and blown out their candles, I took out the books and journals Mother had sent with me. There were exorcisms and pictures of the weapons Father had brought with us, outlining their uses and the demons they could harm or kill. My eyes gave out while reading through hundreds of incantations and spells for everything you could imagine. I fell asleep dreaming of angels flying down from heaven to save us as we slashed our way through witches and demons to save my precious Rory.
© 2016, Rebecca Braun. All rights reserved.
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