Forty-two – 04

[This post is from Phelan’s point of view.]


Marin’s voice was low but urgent. His gaze slid toward her for the space of a heartbeat, long enough to see her widened eyes and the blood draining from her face.

“Look,” she whispered, jerking her chin toward the field.

There was a glow deep in the mists, an eerie, otherworldly light. The sight set his heart to hammering and he gulped in a breath, no longer daring to hold it for a second more.

“Is it Matt?” Marin asked. “Is he doing that?”

“I don’t know,” Phelan said, the words tasting like ash. “Probably.”

What the hell are you up to, Matt?

Another pop, then another. The skies twisted and the mists began to glow.

Far away, someone screamed. It wasn’t pain, it was terror.

“Shit,” Phelan breathed, rocking closer to the edge of the parapet, straining to see through the impenetrable, now-glowing mists. “Shit, Matt, what are you doing?”

Another series of pops rippled out, echoing and distant. Every hair on his body stood on end, the world seeming to crackle around him—around all of them.

Earth geysered sky-high at the far end of the field, the screams of terror beginning to mingle with cries of pain. On the other side of Marin, Phelan saw Seamus stiffen from the corner of his eye.

Déithe agus arrachtaigh,” Seamus breathed, his eyes widening. “It’s been an age since I saw something like that.”

“He’s protecting her the only way he can see,” Phelan whispered, his throat suddenly tight, raw. I pushed him too hard. Gods and monsters, what have I done?

“He’s protecting all of us,” Marin said, rocking to her feet, squinting through the wind and rain. “The mist is rolling back and I don’t see anything except bodies.”

Phelan swallowed bile, following her gaze. She was right, the mists—still glowing that odd shade—were retreating, recoiling, twisting back on themselves like the clouds above. His breath caught. There were bodies, some camazotzi, some human, and others things he didn’t want to identify—things he didn’t want to get close enough to identify. He looked at Matt again, evergreen and silver light twisting faintly around him and Hecate.

He swallowed hard.

None of us know what we’ve done here and that scares the shit out of me.

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