On the Evil Scale: Keeper of La Tecla (The Key) Book Two

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๐’ž๐’ฝ๐’ถ๐“…๐“‰๐‘’๐“‡ ๐Ÿฃ

๐’œ lot can happen in a yearโ€™s time. The situation in the Great City has grown more hostile; Lord Drakuul spread his horrendous corruption like poison does a wound and ordered the deaths of all who opposed him impaling their heads on spikes outside the House of Parliament. To survive, people out of fear volunteered to become spies but the Lord worked in tricky ways, making them Enforcers of his Generalโ€™s army, replenishing their numbers and becoming something they themselves wouldnโ€™t recognize. Every night, the Enforcers would roam the streets, searching for those who posed a threat or who hadnโ€™t made the curfew deadline. It didnโ€™t matter to the Enforcers if they were to be arrested or killedโ€ฆthey just acted on impulse for their hunger was insatiable. While his army performed the tasks given, Lord Drakuul and his brother Matrx, (General of a legion of men, Wraiths and hellish beasts and flying menaces) gathered in the Throne room, engaging in a heated discussion.

โ€œHave you found anything, yet!?โ€ Drakuul ordered.

โ€œNothing yet, no.โ€ Matrx answered in disappointment.

โ€œNothing yet? Itโ€™s been over a goddamn year and youโ€™ve found nothing? How is that possible!?โ€

โ€œBecause thereโ€™s isnโ€™t much to find, thatโ€™s why!โ€ Matrx argued loudly, โ€œYou have my men and I running here and there when we donโ€™t know what weโ€™re f*cking looking for!โ€

โ€œMarxus, damn you...Marxus, you incompetent fool!โ€ Drakuul slammed his hands loudly on the table between him and his brother.

โ€œMarxus...right.โ€ Matrx nodded mockingly, โ€œA man we havenโ€™t seen for over one hundred years whoโ€™s probably long dead for all we know. Your pursuit is relentless, hopeless and youโ€™re just wasting valuable time!โ€

Drakuul straightened his posture as he threw his hands toward his brother, pulling him toward him with an invisible tether; Matrx could feel the pull and one he couldnโ€™t break. Once he stood inches from Drakuul, he was grabbed by the neckline of his armor and pulled closer; his face inches from Drakuulโ€™s who stared into Matrxโ€™s brown eyes.

โ€œI want you to listen to me, brotherโ€ฆโ€ Drakuulโ€™s voice was low and menacing, โ€œI have two reasons to be searching for that ONE man, ones of which youโ€™re aware of!โ€ he squinted his eyes, โ€œOne, for what he did to us unless youโ€™ve forgotten?โ€

โ€œOf course, I havenโ€™t forgotten!โ€ Matrx argued trying to pull away.

โ€œAnd second, he has the Book of Solomon which belongs to me! After all weโ€™ve been through and the ass kissing weโ€™ve had to endure, I think itโ€™s time I have something thatโ€™s rightfully mine so what makes you think Marxus is entitled to all that power?โ€ Drakuul moaned, โ€œHmm?โ€

โ€œFirst off, brotherโ€ฆlet me go!โ€ Matrx warned as he began squeezing Drakuulโ€™s hands.

Drakuul wasnโ€™t a physical warrior, never taking interest in that defense for he, like all magically capable individuals, thought he could use his magic for just about everything. If someone came at him with a sword, magic would be his defense but for Matrx who practiced for years during their travels martial arts, became a member of a Samurai clan located within the Japanese hills; skills unmatched. He straightened his armor then laid his hands on the hilts of his two Katanas hanging from his belts.

โ€œI never knew the world was supposed to bow down to you.โ€ Matrx mocked, โ€œEspecially a book that youโ€™ve never seen or held in your f*cking magical hands! Tell me, Drakuul...do you even know what it looks like, this...Book of Solomon?โ€ he waved his hands before him expressively.

โ€œIt doesnโ€™t matter if Iโ€™ve seen it or not. It still belongs to me.โ€ Drakuul raged.

โ€œThatโ€™s a no.โ€ Matrx nodded, โ€œGood. Well, hereโ€™s what Iโ€™m going to do since you insist on keeping yourself locked away up in thisโ€ฆโ€ he glanced around, โ€œThrone room. I am going to find Marxus and give him what he deserves by my hand, not for you, but for me because the day he locked us away, he took my life and although that means very little to you, it means something to me. Now, youโ€™ll be informed when information comes in. That could be hours from now, days or maybe weeks so in the meantime, Iโ€™m sure youโ€™ll find ways to keep yourself busy.โ€ then he turned, storming out of the room, leaving Drakuul standing there filled with distaste.

He closed his eyes, taking in deep breaths. Turning his head, he opened his eyes, glancing toward a black crystal ball sitting on its stand alongside the chair. Reaching out his left hand, he stroked his palm and fingers over its smooth, highly polished surface. At his touch, the ball took on a smokey appearance within its center, but revealed nothing useful.

โ€œShow me what I seek...โ€ Drakuul ordered, โ€œshow me!โ€ but nothing manifested, โ€œWorthless!โ€ he cursed then stood walking out leaving the orb behind strolling through the halls of Parliament, watching as men and creatures moved aside rubble and broken glass.

He arrived at another room out of sight, designated for his use only; PRIVATE ACCESS ONLY was stamped on the door, as he quickly stepped inside without anyone taking notice. He approached an altar where Lexasโ€™ book sat open and other magical tools lying alongside the text. Flipping through the pages he found the spell he needed and preparing the ingredients, he cracked his knuckles. Throwing pinches of herbs into a bowl mixing it with oils and other liquids, he pricked the index finger of his left hand with a ritual athame, dropping a few dabs of his blood into the mixture. Once the reaction he expected occurred, he began reciting the words written in ancient Latin tongue.

Men working in the halls or passing by, listened as Drakuulโ€™s voice recited words that conjured God only knows what; loud screeches, moans, thumping and hissing followed. The men grew fearful as to what their Lord had conjured or created yet again. They scampered down the hall far from the location, not knowing what could emerge at that very moment.

Winter; December 2027, my mom and I have been in Ireland for almost two years. In the beginning, I didnโ€™t understand why we needed to venture here, but in the end the purpose revealed itself. My mom studied in depth further techniques of spell-craft, potions and Herbology; learning their properties, taste and appearance for future use, all of which were listed in the book Marxus had left her. Observing the monthly Sabbaths, we learned of private rituals conducted behind the castle. The High Priest Lord Ian Boyland and Priestess Lady Agatha; who barely made their presence known, informed everyone their upcoming grand Harvest was about to take place; wanting all to be present.

I, on the other hand, advanced in my combat training from a caretaker and level five pureblood Demon named Shung-Lee. He was an older Asian man (although I sensed it was a glamour, allowing me to see what he wanted me to but every now and then, Iโ€™d see a blurred image of a tall 6 foot-something figure before it vanished) that lived on the castleโ€™s grounds in a cottage located in the surrounding forest not too far from the castle. I ran into him by accident one day on my many walks along with my black hellhound Zanz and dragon Abraxas. I observed as he practiced movements using a wooden sword on an old tree trunk; mesmerizing me and use of his arcane magic of just about every skill. After speaking with him, he offered me further training. I let go of all distractions, focusing on his teachings of Martial Arts that were of an ancient technique; something Iโ€™ve never seen before, leaving my muscles sore for days. Being small at 5โ€™3 in height, he told me I had the upper hand, giving more of an advantage. Among everything taking place, Shung-Lee had discovered my halfbreed origins during one of our sessions. After grueling questions that I carefully answered, he helped me to utilize that power instead of containing it. He proclaimed that it should be used and properly referred to it as my AURA. After learning to truly accept that part of myself, I began practicing to use it; eventually controlling it instead of it controlling me! He also taught me arcane magics that half-breeds were capable of performing, ones of which were mild but effective such as stronger use of Telekinesis, Telepathy, Pyrokinesis and my fiery energy that he referred to as my Chi.

I trained every morning and throughout the afternoon, learning something new. Afterwards, Shung-Lee and I would sit outside his cottage drinking tea, as he told stories of how he was a former warrior in his younger days, which after a while, he seemed quite vain about himself but then I brushed it off, thinking that he was just proud of his past. Although, there was one thing that caught my attention pertaining to Shung-Lee; the term MY LOVELY was vaguely familiar taking me back to my first day of training in Ravenstone. Memories of the time I spent with Marxus and others flashed through my mind, making me realize just how much I missed my friends.

Shung-Lee noticed my thoughts distracted me, and helped me focus on his teachings.

โ€œYou came here asking for training and I take the time to do so but yet, you find yourself distracted by thoughts. If your mind is on other thoughts, I suggest you come back at another time.โ€ Shung-Lee stated firmly.

โ€œNo, Iโ€™m fine. It was just a momentary memory. Thatโ€™s all.โ€ I answered, โ€œIโ€™m sorry.โ€

โ€œWhy are you here?โ€ Shung-Lee folded his arms.

โ€œIt was something someone suggested. Even my mom doesnโ€™t particularly like it but Iโ€™m here. Unfortunately. Now, please...letโ€™s continue. I want to learn all I can. Please...โ€ I urged.

โ€œAre you sure?โ€


โ€œHow do you know?โ€

โ€œBecause I justโ€ฆโ€ then I questioned curiously, โ€œwait a minute. Speaking in riddles. Vague personality. Marxusโ€ฆis that you?โ€

โ€œWho? Iโ€™m sorry, but I donโ€™t know anyone by the name of Marcus Castoni.โ€

โ€œItโ€™s Marxus Castillion.โ€ I argued, โ€œAnd I never said that mansโ€™ last name.โ€ I folded my arms.

โ€œGazuntite.โ€ Shung-Lee added, โ€œPleaseโ€ฆlet us indeed continue. Time is being wasted!โ€

โ€œMm.โ€ I mumbled; eyes squinted studying the man before me, โ€œRightโ€ฆuh-huh.โ€

After training, I returned to my room where Zanz and Abraxas anxiously greeted me.

My evenings were left free for all the ridiculous ritual meetings I had no part in. I then began to truly understand my momโ€™s point of view pertaining to the magic practice, and found it pretty interesting. There were however, among the witches that had traveled here, Shayds that practiced the darker magics and both my mom and I avoided them for they attempted to convert us into their practices. We declined their offers but I however, attended one of their gatherings learning the difference between the Arcane magics that Demons and half-breeds like myself practiced and their scene just wasnโ€™t for me; they performed spells that conjured demons and entities from other worlds and sensing the overwhelming allure that sent a negative tingle up my spine, I quickly left the gathering. They didnโ€™t force me to stay and allowed me to leave without consequence or danger.

After feeding my babies and before I could shower and rest, my phone resting on the table beside the bed, rang. I scampered over, seeing Erikโ€™s face anxiously waiting for me to answer. Looking in the mirror, I quickly combed my hair back from my face with my fingers, sat on the bed, breathed deeply then answered with a smile,

โ€œHey, you...โ€

โ€œHey, back.โ€ Erik answered, โ€œEverything alright?โ€ he observed my red face.

โ€œYes. I just got back from a long dayโ€™s training.โ€

โ€œAgain?โ€ he raised his eyebrows, โ€œWow.โ€

โ€œYes, training.โ€ I answered, โ€œYou know that.โ€

โ€œI know...I know.โ€ he nodded, โ€œItโ€™s just...I was hoping to be the one to train you, thatโ€™s all.โ€

โ€œYeah, well...when I get back, we can continue that training.โ€

โ€œPerhaps.โ€ he glanced away, โ€œI still think itโ€™s unfair that I canโ€™t come over there.โ€

โ€œYeah, well...outsiders without an invitation arenโ€™t welcome. You know that.โ€ I referred to his first attempt to portal his way onto the property but upon stepping through, the portal only returned him to his room.

โ€œCanโ€™t you give me one?โ€ Erik teased.

โ€œNo, Erik...itโ€™s not my place.โ€ I shrugged.

โ€œWorth a try.โ€ he smiled.

โ€œSo...whatโ€™s been happening today?โ€ I inquired hoping he wouldnโ€™t reveal more issues that had been taking place during my absence.

โ€œOh, you know...the same old bloody sh*t.โ€ he complained; we talked for hours until the battery died.

I was disappointed to hear about how Leonus continued pulling his weight around; taking over, bossing people around and changing things more to his liking.

โ€œAnd what are Thomas, Anthony, Nick and Caleb doing about this?โ€ I grew angry.

โ€œThere have been so many squabbles and heated skirmishes that Iโ€™m surprised there hasnโ€™t been a full blown-out war between Wraiths, Demons and Lycynians.โ€ Erik muttered bluntly.

Hearing this filled me with anger as I engulfed in my Aura, jumping off my bed; I paced my room. Sensing I was upset, Erik changed the subject trying to calm me down over the phone, as he could see my image.

โ€œHeyโ€ฆhey, Keepsโ€ฆyouโ€™re steaming again. Calm down before you burn your roomsโ€™ decor?โ€

I breathed deeply, concentrating on controlling that part of myself. Once the aura vanished, I took my seat back on my bed and it was then Erik took notice for the first time in almost two years that I had worn the pendant he had given me.

โ€œYouโ€™re wearing the pendant.โ€ he observed.

โ€œOf course.โ€ I glanced down at it, โ€œIt was a gift.โ€ I raised my gaze staring into his gray eyes, โ€œSo, what have you been up to? You always seem to change the subject when that question comes up.โ€

โ€œBusy...doing stuff...with people.โ€ he answered vaguely.

โ€œBusy doing stuff with people?โ€ I questioned, โ€œCare to share?โ€

โ€œNot really.โ€

Attempting to say something more, the phones died creating that all familiar static of the battery once again draining its energy leaving our voices muffling.

โ€œKeeps...can you hear me?โ€ Erik called out.

โ€œErik?โ€ I replied, โ€œHello?โ€ then my screen completely went blank and our voices faded, โ€œPiece of sh*t.โ€ I gently tossed the radio-phone onto the table.

I stared at the stone floor feeling troubled by what Erik revealed. Leonus practically declared himself Keeper, creating nothing but turmoil and in that moment I needed to return as soon as possible.

โ€œYza...honey?โ€ my mom called out as she entered my room, โ€œArenโ€™t you coming? And why arenโ€™t you dressed yet? We have to get ready for the ritual tonight.โ€ she walked over sitting next to me noticing my uneasiness, โ€œWhatโ€™s the matter?โ€

โ€œSorry. I, just uhโ€ฆjust got back from training and talked to Erik.โ€ I replied as I looked at her dressed in a beautiful black witches dress and velvet cloak-coat hybrid, โ€œYou look beautiful as always.โ€ I smiled then complained, โ€œBut do I have to go? I mean, is it really mandatory I come? I donโ€™t see the importanceโ€ฆat all.โ€

โ€œNo, but itโ€™s a good gesture for us to make our presence known, donโ€™t you think? Besides, itโ€™s mandatory that everyone attends. Now, whatโ€™s wrong?โ€

โ€œTwo words. Leonus Lancaster.โ€ I groaned with a frown, โ€œHeโ€™s more or less, declared himself Keeper. Erik told me heโ€™s having more issues with those I left in charge.โ€ then I shook my head, โ€œF*cking a**hole!โ€

โ€œLanguage.โ€ my mom affirmed then leaned in teasing, โ€œHe is an a**hole.โ€ she winked, nudging me slightly.

I chuckled.

โ€œGive me a bit to clean up and change, then Iโ€™ll meet you downstairs, okay?โ€ I proposed.

โ€œOkay, sweetheart.โ€ my mom stood giving a quick kiss on the top of my head, โ€œBut donโ€™t be too long. It starts in an hour. I love you. And rememberโ€ฆthese two need to stay here.โ€ she gestured toward Zanz and Abraxas.

โ€œAn hour. Got it. Love you too.โ€

She smiled as she left the room; her velvet cloak flowing behind. My mom is still a beautiful woman in her early 60s; dark brown hair and medium brown eyes that are kind and warm. Petite in height at 5โ€™3 with a full figure. Sheโ€™s a wonderful mother and has raised me well and was never ashamed or frightened of my demonic nature. Except when I burned things.

Retrieving a pair of fresh clean black clothing and cloat my mom had lent me, I showered and changed. Afterwards, I looked around my room before leaving. Walking toward the door, I had the strangest feeling. I know it sounds weird but I quickly turned, scampering toward my bed. Kneeling down, I reached under my bed retrieving the sword. Before placing the sheathโ€™s strap over and across my chest, I had to examine its beauty once again. Removing the Medieval Masonic short sword from its intricately decorated sheath displaying a red Templar cross and elaborate silver Medieval etchings, it created that hypnotic ZHING sound, as it slid from the sheath. Laying the bladeโ€™s tip across my left palm, I examined the rest of its beauty. The swordโ€™s hilt was black, with a red Templar cross and a silver knightโ€™s helmet pommel. A silver hand guard displayed small crosses on each end; red Templar cross gracing both sides. Its sleek blade glistened; polished enough to see my eyesโ€™ reflection. I could feel the power and magic in this sword and whoever crafted it, I could see why Marxus favored it. Although, I think itโ€™s never been used for the bladeโ€™s edge displayed no chips.

I re-sheathed the sword, placing the strap across my chest hiding it beneath my cloak. I stood walking toward my door, instructing Zanz and Abraxas to stay put as I petted and kissed them, then left closing the door behind me. Standing outside looking down the halls, I could hear Zanzโ€™s whines followed by a few scratches. I walked the halls with many others dressed in black and hooded cloaks. Downstairs, I joined my mom who sat in the lounge with other Wiccans. From someoneโ€™s point-of-view the scene; a sea of black, would be quite menacing. All practitioners strolled through the rear doors, gathering behind the castle in the cold Winterโ€™s night air; a place forbidden to others, used for rituals arranged for their standards. As everyone continued gathering around, my mom and I heard two familiar voices speak from behind.

โ€œHello, there.โ€ a friendly male voice said in a familiar English accent.

โ€œYes, hello again.โ€ a female voice said immediately after.

My mom and I turned and there stood Billy the Realtor whom we met in White-haven and Mary, the red haired woman who read our fortunes on the train. They too were dressed in black attire. Billy walked over giving hugs as did Mary. When we pulled away, Billy commented as he examined us,

โ€œI knew there was more to the two of you. You ARE witches!โ€ he looked at me then whispered, โ€œAnd a halfbreed.โ€

โ€œIndeed.โ€ Mary added, โ€œI can say the same.โ€

Billy and Mary gave quick explanations of how theyโ€™ve been members of this coven for a very long time and that they had arrived an hour before everyone gathered. We spoke for a while when a loud bell rang three times.

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