|Author: Alruna Zelenia||Original Source: Re:Library|
~Chapter 9: Her Destiny~
When the coast was finally clear, Avery rushed to Evelyn’s side in a blur of motion, “Oh, Eve, I was so worried about you!”
“Me? I should have been more worried about you when you guys couldn’t kill that- that monster!” Eyes widened in fear, the human shuddered just thinking of the monster that had nearly devoured her. She could still remember its stinking breath puffing on her face and its abhorrent jaw closing down on her head.
“I was perfectly fine, Eve. I could have taken that demon child sooner or later. Do you even realize how much danger you had been in? You were in that dream for almost an hour when that man over there finally got you,” the zombie pointed a thumb behind her without even glancing at the Faerie. He rolled his eyes and huffed in exasperation, “Why, you’re welcome, zombie.”
Even though the zombie knew that without the Faerie’s help, the human would have been as good as dead, she ignored him with a wave of her hand. She did not possess the level of magick required to enter one’s dream. She then explained, “That dream was a world completely manipulated by that beast, you could have died a painful death in your sleep without any means of protecting yourself. You don’t even know how lucky you are to still be alive after the amount of time you spent there – it could have slaughtered you within a few minutes of your sleep and you would have never woken up.” The redhead squeezed the blonde’s body firmly into her own as if she could keep the human there forever safely cocooned in her arms. Evelyn did realize how very fortunate she had been to have Avery, and now Haydn, in her life.
“Thank you for saving me again, guys. You didn’t have to do that for me but you did.” The blue-eyed woman smiled gratefully. Both of the supernatural scoffed at the same time, then they glared at each other. With another squeeze of the woman, the zombie promised earnestly, “I would have never let anyone hurt you.”
Another scoff from the man leaning against the window sill, he grumbled sourly, “Save that for yourself. I am required to save this… Human, disregarding my own desire.” The way he pronounced the word ‘human’ as if it was an insult caused the zombie to curl her lips in a snarl at him.
Choosing to ignore the animosity between the two, Evelyn asked the question that had been in her head since last night, “By the way, Avie, what was that thing? And why are there people trying to kill me?”
“That thing was a child of Phobetor, the demon of nightmares. He is a middle-ranking demon of the second circle of Hell – quite powerful and I really shouldn’t be saying his name but he usually sends his children to invoke nightmares in the weak-willed. If he is the one after you, we might be in a bit of trouble.” The redhead replied.
“Phobetor is but a pawn in this game, zombie. There’s someone else more powerful that we should be worried about,” warned the blue-haired man with his eyes pointedly looking out the windows.
“Well then, who is after Evelyn, O’ wise one?” Avery sneered mockingly. Even with the scornful tone, the fear was unmistakable in her eyes – the fear of being unable to protect her dearest friend. Noticing the fear in her eyes, the grey-eyed man looked almost sympathetic for one fleeting moment. He promptly schooled his expression, “You do not want to know, zombie. All you need to know is that the human will live if she can survive long enough for ‘Her’ to come to collect the human.”
“Wait, just hold on one ꜰᴜᴄᴋing moment! Please explain yourselves to this human here.” Evelyn glanced distressfully between the two non-humans; she was certain that she was missing a major puzzle piece of the conversation.
Haydn answered for the tight-lipped zombie who was unwilling to cause further distress to her friend, “You have been claimed by a demoness and a demon who hates ‘Her’ would do anything to usurp ‘Her’, he wants to capture you, alive or dead. It’s really just your typical demon politics. All is fair in love and politics, honey and you are just the collateral damage.”
Trying to make sense of the situation, Evelyn asked for clarification, “Right, so a demon wants me as good as dead and a demoness is supposed to rescue me for god knows what reason? Isn’t there something else to bargain?” The man scoffed derisively, “A human has nothing of worth to bargain with demons. Demons only claim others as slaves, or if you’re lucky – a pet.”
“Slaves or pets?!” Eyes widened in horror, Evelyn shrieked. Finally deciding to break her silent spell, Avery tried to assuage the human’s fear, but bless her innocent zombie heart – she failed. Because try as she might, she just could not comprehend this aspect of human life; for zombies lived a life of servitude with the greatest honour. With a soothing tone, she murmured, “Hey babe, it’s not as bad as it sounds.”
“How can that not be as bad as it sounds?” Evelyn questioned the absurdity of the statement. She then declared loudly, “I would rather die than to live as someone’s slave!”
“Well I mean, I am at least happy that you would be living for about just as long as I would and I don’t have to lose you to old age!” Avery answered with a joyful undertone.
“I am almost afraid to ask, but how long are we talking about?” The blonde asked slowly.
“Most supernatural can live up to a few millennia if they did not die from something else first. It becomes dangerous when one is more than a couple of centuries-old because as we grow older, we also become stronger and would be viewed as a threat to the others.” The oldest among them explained, “However, there are always exceptions to the rule, including demons who can live forever unless the Demon King himself removes them from the brink of existence.”
Avery then continued excitedly for him, “And, if you’re claimed as a slave or pet by a demon, you would live for as long as your claimer lives.”
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The Fae sensed the displeasure of the human, he smirked in self-satisfaction and jeered in a sing-song voice, “Forever is a long time.”
The human sighed in her own hopelessness, she mumbled, “Is there any way, any at all, that I can avoid all these?”
“One thing you should know about demons is that they always get what they want, only the most foolish of fools would think otherwise. So, you really only have two options: die by an old senile demon, or live as a demoness’ new favourite pet. If you knew better, you’d just accept that fate.” The man laughed as if he had just heard the funniest thing in life. Evelyn began wondering whether all Faeries were just like him or he was just especially loathsome. She could hardly believe that she used to think he looked dreamy. This man obviously wanted nothing to do with her and would be glad to see her dead if only he wasn’t forced upon the role of her guardian. The blonde now understood some of her best friend’s contempt towards his species.
Evelyn gritted through her teeth, “And I suppose I can’t just die right now either.”
He quickly calmed down and sighed dramatically, “Unluckily for both you and I, I am tasked with keeping you alive.” He glared at her, “So don’t even think about it.”
As a strong independent woman, Evelyn found this predicament to be a hard pill to swallow. Her life plans did not include the supernatural and they sure did not include her death by one or her forever being dedicated as a slave to another. However, she supposed that life always had ways to derail one’s plans.
The zombie who had been glaring daggers into the Faerie’s skull with laser-like focus finally relinquished her task to console her despairing friend. She pulled her friend to lay down on the bed with her. She then cuddled the human and hummed a soft unfamiliar tune that soothed her friend’s terrified mind. This time when Evelyn fell asleep, it was into a blissfully dreamless slumber.
When Evelyn woke up next, the sky was darkening already and she was still safely cocooned in Avery’s arms. She looked at the window that she had begun to associate with a certain despicable Fae, only to find he had finally abandoned his post. She desperately hoped that he had finally left them alone even though she knew that would not be possible until she was safely collected as a slave.
The blonde’s stirring caused the redhead’s breathing to change, waking her up. Her speech was slurred in her drowsiness, “G’ evenin’, babe. Feelin’ any better after a good sleep?”
The human lied and nodded, “I do feel better now.” She did feel better when she had first woken up and the situation was a mere buzz in the back of her mind. However, once her friend asked her that question, it all came crashing back down on her.
With a heavy heart, she asked the question that had been plaguing her ever since she learned of her fate. “What does it mean to be a demon’s slave, Avery?” She burrowed further into the zombie’s warmth for protection against the cruel world, her friend cradled her lovingly.
“It could mean a lot of things, Eve – it really depends on the demon. There are many rumours about the demoness who claimed you but I wouldn’t trust anything from a rumour mill.” The vibration of her throat when the zombie spoke was comforting in a way her words had not been for the human.
“Slaves are generally just servants without wages – you could be a housekeeper, a cleaner, a cook, or you could also be the favourite of your master and serve them by their side. Technically, you could be anything they want you to be. But if you’re lucky, some of them allow you to spend as much money as you want, doing whatever you want for a few days each year as holidays. One common thing about demons who decided to reside in the human realm is that they are all bloody rich.” Even as Avery explained everything regarding a slave to her, all she could think about was that she could be a sex slave for all she knew. She had spent all her life studying and working hard so that she could live comfortably and provide for her parents, only to be reduced to a slave. How fitting was that? Life was just not fair.
“Isn’t there any kind of police for the supernatural at all? Someone that could help people like me?” The blue-eyed woman asked, even knowing the negative answer that was coming.
“Well, there is an organization where supernatural, mages and Enlightened humans work together as a sort of policing agent to keep the unlawful supernatural in check. They have helped a lot of forcefully claimed humans out of their claims and a lot of other things but their main objective is to try to keep the supernatural hidden from humans, to avoid disasters.” Avery answered, causing hope to bloom in the human’s heart. If they could save Evelyn from this fate, why didn’t she mention it earlier? Evelyn was about to ask her that when she continued, “But no, Eve, I’m sorry to say this but this organization would not be able to help you. You have been claimed by a demoness who could destroy their entire organization with a snap of her fingers.” She snapped her own fingers for emphasis, “Just like that.”
“Oh…” The blonde mumbled dejectedly and nuzzled her head deeper into the crook of her friend’s neck. They stayed like that for a moment longer before the redhead pulled back, the blonde almost whimpered at the loss of comfort.
The zombie looked into her eyes sincerely, “Eve, I promise you that being a slave is not as bad as it sounds. If it truly is, I’ll sacrifice myself to bust you out, deal? For now though, we should get cleaned up and eat, a’right? I don’t know about you, but for me to recover from all the injuries I suffered, I need to replenish the energy I expended. I am simply famished right now!”
Evelyn chuckled despite herself, she nodded her head in agreement before they took separate showers. While she was in the shower, Avery had called up the nearest takeaway Chinese shop and ordered everything on the menu. That which the human only found out when the doorbell rang and she nearly choked on the surprise – her heart literally jumped out of her chest due to the sudden noise, she was getting rather jumpy from all the surprises she had in the last 24 hours. She noticed that Haydn was napping on the couch in the living room and decided not to wake the possibly exhausted man, no matter how rude he had been. She took a deep breath and peeked into the peephole to find an Asian man standing in front of the door, looking tortured with the huge load in his arms. She arched a brow before unlocking the door and the young man grinned at her, “Delivery for you, miss. One of everything on the menu.”
She was reaching out to take the heavy burden from the man when Haydn’s arms came into view at the corner of her eyes and took them instead. Once he was free of the burden, the Asian man quoted the price of the expensive meal. She asked him to wait while she retrieved her wallet. A scandalous thought popped into her mind that she would have loved it if Haydn was to be rude to the stranger and slammed the door in his face instead.
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She returned to the disappointment of the wide-open front door where the delivery man was still waiting patiently. All Haydn had done was laying out the containers of food on the kitchen table and counters. She counted out the notes for him with a heavy heart, watching the blackhole appear in her wallet. However, she still asked him to keep the change as tips since it couldn’t have been easy for him to carry all those boxes up the thirteen floors with his skinny human arms.
In the kitchen, she found the two supernatural beings stuffing their face with food. She blinked blankly a few times, watching the food vanish at an astonishing rate. When they finally noticed her presence, they both smiled – Avery with her mouth full and teeth showing and Haydn with a closed-lip smile, silently thanking her for the food. Avery took one moment to point out the plate and chopsticks they had laid out for her before she hastily dug back into the food. The blonde shook her head at them in amusement because they looked like they were in a competition to see who could eat more. Those two despised each other so much yet they were so similar.
“Just to be sure, the food is not poisoned, right?” They both stopped chewing, their chopsticks full of food raised halfway to their mouths and stared dumbly at the human. Avery lowered her chopsticks, carefully chewed and swallowed the food in her mouth before speaking, “I don’t think so, the food tastes pretty good.” She then proceeded to poke and prod at the pile of delicious food on her plate.
Haydn quickly swallowed his mouthful, nearly choking himself. He cleared his throat and then moved his glowing hands above the containers. While he was doing that, the entire apartment was silent and they waited with bated breath until her stomach growled loudly. Hearing the noise, his hand paused and Avery started giggling which caused the human to follow suit. Soon their giggles turned into full belly laughs. The Fae shook his head and continued checking the food for poison, they couldn’t see the amused smile on his lips since he was facing away from them.
The glow of his hand dimmed and then vanished above the last container of food, he then confirmed that the food was not poisoned. Only after that did all of them dig into their food earnestly. Evelyn could not believe how ravenous she was feeling until that moment – she hadn’t eaten anything since last night. Once she was full, she sat back and observed the pair eating, both of them were behaving as if they hadn’t eaten in days – Avery kept pushing mouthfuls of food into her mouth and Haydn looked slightly more disciplined but not that much better. The human silently speculated whether all supernatural beings had larger appetites than humans and ate like this, or these two were just really hungry.
She asked her unexpected guests to enjoy their meal when she decided to check over the damage done to her apartment. They acknowledged her with nods of their heads without even looking at her. She shook her head again, at how similar they were and strode out of the kitchen bar – her apartment had a kitchen separated from the living room by a bar.
It was only when she walked around inspecting the place, did she notice that most of the damage left from the attacks had been cleaned up and all of the windows, save for the bedroom window, were broken. She suspected that the Faerie must have been the one who did it – maybe he wasn’t such a bad person after all. Other than the broken windows and the blonde’s missing phone, everything was in place – no bloodstains, no ashes, or any other signs of the attack.
The human gazed out of the guest bedroom window – or what was left of it – into the city. She dived deep into her own head, pondering over her future and the danger that was awaiting her until the demoness would come to collect her. She smiled in self-depreciation, at the idea that she had already accepted the fact that she was destined to be a slave forever. However, after those discussions with her two unlikely guardians, she knew there wasn’t anything she could do to change it unless she was murdered by the demon. There was also no guarantee when the demoness would arrive to retrieve her, so maybe, just maybe, she still had enough time to live for herself. She could still make the most of what she had left and maybe Avery was right in that being a slave wouldn’t be the worst thing to happen to her.
Those were a lot of maybe’s but it was all she could count on to keep her spirits up and let her look forward to her inevitable future. Maybe she would even be allowed to keep Perse as her lover – only time would tell.