[This post is from Hecate’s point of view.]
“Please, Hecate,” Pluton said, staring her in the face without a hint of panic to his voice, though she could see it starting to take root in his eyes. He knew full well the reasons to fear what she could do.
But he’s not giving in.
Dammit, why hasn’t he backed off yet?
“All we want you to do is come home,” he said.
Her eyes narrowed, cold rage and hate bubbling up inside. She didn’t bother to tamp it back down, not yet.
I might need it.
“Come home,” she echoed. “And where would that be? Really, where would it be? I know where I think home is and I’m pretty sure it’s not where you think it is.”
“It doesn’t have to be this way.” He held out his and to her, palm up. Her hands tightened around her weapons and lightning struck close enough to set her hair on end, to leave the smell of ozone thick in the air around them. Pluton barely flinched, though his hand shook for a moment. “Come with me.”
“So I can be a good little puppet all over again?” Her eyes narrowed and she shook her head slowly. “No. No, I don’t think so.”
“It won’t be that way.”
Damn, but he actually sounded like he might really mean it. She wasn’t about to trust him, though, not after everything that had gone before, everything that he had stood by and watched, maybe even had ordered.
“How am I supposed to believe that?” she asked in a whisper. “After everything that you and yours did to me, how am I supposed to believe a word you say? How do I know you’re telling me the truth?”
“You just have to have faith,” Pluton said. He said it straight-faced and that told her everything she needed to know.
Luckily, I’m not a child anymore, not like I was then. I know what that look means and what those words mean.
She felt the rage drain away along with her fear, leaving only cold behind. She took one breath, then another, willing her expression to blankness, forcing back the tears that threatened.
No fear. This is how it ends, one way or another.
“Matt, forgive me,” she whispered, then lunged forward. She dropped one of her blades, fingers hooked into claws, reaching, grasping for Pluton’s neck.
Horns sounded in the distance and a roar began to build, though Hecate couldn’t tell if it was her imagination or something else as she cleared the space between them.
“You can’t kill me,” he roared as her fingers closed around his throat. “I hold power over death!”
“And I am the one who guards the way,” she countered, her voice soft and razor-edged, carrying twin promises of suffering and pain—and release from the same. “Remember who I was before you stole it from me.”
She called the lightning as his brother had once taught her and all around them, the storm erupted in all its fury.