Chapter 11: Breathless
Sebastian ran frantically through the maze of dark corridors underneath this small inner city home. She had to be here, somewhere in this labyrinth of empty rooms and dead ends. Sebastian would find her. He would not leave without her.
Though the house had seemed normal when Sebastian arrived, a truly ugly brown colour with broken windows. Underneath it, Sebastian had found a hidden corridor. Which led to another, and another.
“Gabrielle!” he shouted desperately as the minutes turned to hours with no sign of the girl he had to protect. Something flickered down a corridor on his right and Sebastian froze hands raised ready to attack.
What the? there was no light in this horrible place that Sebastian had seen, but light was tracing itself along the wall leading in a trail down the corridor. Except it wasn’t light, it was lightning.
It must have been from her; she was trying to help Sebastian to find her like he had done with his Uncle when he was trapped at Sacred Heart. Sebastian followed the light which flickered unsurely and more than once left him in the dark.
It persisted though and so did he until he reached the end of the trail, an extremely battered door that Sebastian hastily opened with a quick burst of ice to break the lock.
The room was filthy and smelt like hell but his eyes sought out the crumpled angel on the floor. His heart broke at the sight of her, dirty and covered in burn marks from her father. Her eyes were wet with tears and she had one white knuckled hand on the wall sending lightning across it.
Sebastian slowly walked forward, afraid that if he startled her she would react with her powers. Carefully he reached out one hand which was encased in water and put the light out by gently touching her hand.
“Light?” he whispered and was unprepared for the choking hug he was suddenly pulled into. Gabrielle’s shoulders shook as she sobbed into his chest. Gabrielle, usually as searing and strong as her element was crying in his arms.
“I didn’t think anyone would come” she confessed quietly as she tried to control herself. Her arms abruptly let go of him and she wiped her eyes. Sebastian was so angry at Fairless for taking her away but he was even angrier that he had crushed her hope.
“Listen to me, Gabrielle” he took her hand gingerly examining the burns that were in the middle of healing and were probably still sore. He’d kill Fairless for what he had done, the man would pay.
“I will always come, no matter what happens, I’ll find you. I’ll fight your father and hundreds of his men if that’s what it takes. I won’t leave you with him” Sebastian’s words came from a part of him that he hadn’t known was capable of feeling anything anymore, it was remarkable that Gabrielle could bring the feeling back.
“I’ll hold you to that then Puppy” the use of Sebastian’s nickname meant that the Gabrielle he knew with a hot temper and an even hotter tongue was still in there somewhere. Not that it would matter if they couldn’t escape this dungeon.
“Come on Light, we have to get out of here” he pulled Gabrielle to her feet where she swayed unsteadily for a moment. She was weak from the torture her father had conducted on her but hopefully she was strong enough for this.
“Stay close to me” he gently gripped her hand “I won’t lose you again” he meant it, he would rather be tortured himself than let Gabrielle endure any more pain. Fairless could hurt him as much as he wanted but it would never compare to the pain of not knowing if Gabrielle was safe.
They would need a lot of luck to get out of here alive, surely Fairless would have some kind of security to stop Gabrielle from escaping. Sebastian had met no resistance coming in and that made him even more suspicious
“No matter what happens I want you to keep going, I came here to get you out and I promise I won’t leave you behind” Sebastian knew that Gabrielle didn’t know that he would keep that promise until his dying breath. He would stay and suffer if it meant getting Gabrielle out.
“Run, Light, and don’t look back” Sebastian let her go as she ran down the corridor and around the corner. Good, she would be able to find the exit if something happened to him. With that slightly comforting thought Sebastian followed after her.
He met no one in the bottom layer of corridors but as he began to enter the level above he found that he was not as alone as he had thought. It started with the air becoming thicker around Sebastian, he found it difficult to draw in air and his pace slowed.
It wasn’t long before he was stumbling and his vision blurred making it impossible for him to see. He knew he had to keep going and make sure Gabrielle got out but as he fell to his knees and gasped desperately for air he knew he was in no condition to escape with her.
Footsteps echoed and with his chest heaving and sweat dripping down his face Sebastian could not grasp any of his power. If he’d had the breath to curse he would have done but with no air to draw on all Sebastian could do was hope they killed him quickly.
Strong arms pulled him to his feet and dragged him into a bare room. He clutched at the white walls for support but ended up crumpling on the floor. The person sighed and touched his shoulder and suddenly Sebastian found it much easier to breathe.
He drew in one deep breath after another and tried to figure out what the hell was going on. The person who had stolen his breath and then returned it to him must be an air Elemental, but if they were here then surely they worked for Fairless?
Sebastian opened his eyes sure that he was about to be captured and was surprised to find himself looking at a pretty girl with gray eyes. She wore a black leather jacket and black skinny jeans with knee high black boots. Her hair was dyed an electric shade of purple and her pale skin was covered in swirling black tattoos.
This wasn’t what he expected of one of The Peacemakers, surely they would want to blend in to avoid being noticed and surely they wouldn’t be Elementals themselves… unless there were some who had betrayed their own for the side they believed would come out on top?
The girl stopped Sebastian’s train of thought by grabbing his shirt and pulling him to his feet where he swayed unsteadily still recovering from her attack.
“W-who are?” he panted and half his question got left out but he was sure she would know what he meant and hopefully help him feel less confused
“I’m Shaft, and yeh I work for the big man, but I want to make something perfectly clear Blue, I’m not a traitor. I’m a spy, the big man has been recruiting the Elementals he don’t kill to join him. Your Uncle wants to know why” Sebastian hadn’t known that. He’d always thought meeting Fairless was a death sentence.
“Why?” Shaft snorted and turned away allowing Sebastian to see that her tattoos continued down her shoulders and disappeared. She twirled a finger as she talked and a tiny tornado followed.
“He’s getting ready Blue; he’s getting ready for war. I don’t know against who but I can guess” cold fear laced its way through Sebastian’s veins. A war against Elementals being fought by Elementals, this was bad, this was very bad.
“What can we do?” Sebastian asked Shaft even though he knew she wouldn’t have the answer. She worked for Fairless but she couldn’t read his mind.
“I don’t know if we can do anything Blue, he left me here to watch the prisoner but I know that you just got her free. I had to attack you so I could tell the big man that I thought you were dead. Go find your Fire girl and get before he comes back” Sebastian had so many questions but now was not the time to ask them.
Sebastian fled after Gabrielle this time knowing he had to get home so he could talk to his Uncle. He knew about this war that was coming but he had never mentioned it to Sebastian and that made him angry. How was he meant to protect Gabrielle and prepare for a war he didn’t know was coming?
If it took every last drop of the strength he had gained since the attack at Sacred Hearts he would get answers from his Uncle. He deserved that much, he and Gabrielle both did.