Dream Walker

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Chapter 32 Steak

I stepped inside of the caste the entire room was alight with torches along the stone walls and a grand chandler hanging high in the room near the grand staircase. It looked like all those grand entryways you see in movies of large homes or castles. Across from the main door, and thirty feet of the beautifully marbled floor was the stairs that went up then curled up and around into a tower. Paimon was lounging on the steps a book in hand and a teacup in the other as he was laid back looking rather comfy on the carpeted stone steps. The door shut behind me gently without a soul there to do it. Most would think that a king of hell would have a scary looking house or just a circle of hell. This however actually looked a bit like a comfy and well lived in the home. Near the walls were a few tables all decorated with nicknacks, photos, flowers, books that looked to have been set down in passing. The smell of food cooking drifted through the grand room.

“You are late.” My wandering gaze jerked to the King.

“What do you mean? It’s only been a few hours.” Panic laced in my tone so heavy even I noticed.

He chuckled closing the book with a snap before it was set aside and he sat up. “It has been nearly three months in physical time.”

I paled, I could feel the blood draining from my face as I looked at him, shock taking over. “That’s not…”

He continued to chuckle taking a sip of his drink. “ Ah but I speak only truth. It’s far more fun.”

He set the cup aside and stood as I was speechless. “You summoned a God. You do know they tend to alter time and reality when in their presence correct?”

I had been so terrified of Phobetor, in so much pain I hadn’t even considered the time alteration of asking for the Goddesses aid. “I...”

Paimon tisked lightly. “ You let panic and fear rule you, but then again you aren’t exactly a well trained Dream Walker. “

I licked my dry lips. It had been weeks, my body would have likely died by now and I was stuck in the dream world. “ Such pain a fear.”

I looked at the King and the look was not happy. “ And there she is.”

He stood, highly pleased if you could tell by the tone of his voice and face. “The fighter one of my most prized Demons took a liking too.”

I blinked.”Leo?”

Paimon nodded. “But of course. Leo is a very powerful Demon who’s yet to even reach a full percent of his abilities. When another war comes and my legions must fight he will be at the forefront leading my men along my side”

I had known Leo was a demon, hell I’d seen it. I’d accepted it, but I realized he was some sort of high ranking demon in this kings army it made me wonder more about what I didn’t know about Leo. Paimon was watching me intently, pleased when I showed hesitation now. “Ahh, you don’t like that. Such a shame because of your bond you’d be standing with him of course.”

I paled and he laughed the sound was filled with a joy that creeped me out. “Did you not read the fine print in the book dear David gave you? Once you form a bond with a demon even after your passing or end of time in the physical realm your soul belongs to the demon you bonded with. In fact, your father’s entire line is part of my armies, perhaps when you depart from the mortal realm I’ll be sure you meet them all. They are quite the rambunctious bunch.”

I felt anger stirring to cover the hurt and the fear that was building. Had Leo only done this for Paimon? “Is that why he’s been following my family for years?! To collect us all this is all a game to bring you more warriors? It’s just a game?”

The king’s smile was wicked.”Ah. Have you figured it out so soon? “ He chuckled and shook his head. “Perhaps it is storytime yet again hmm?”

He walked through a doorway on his left, my right. “ Come and sit while dinner is being finished.”

If he didn’t have my body stashed somewhere and my only hope of getting out of this realm I’d have left. “No you wouldn’t Sarah, you can’t leave until I allow it. Remember you willingly walked into the home of a King of Hell.”

I cursed aloud only to hear him chuckle. “Come now I hate waiting and I’ve already spent longer than intended on this matter.”

I followed him stopping at the door in shock. The room was the largest Library I’d ever seen, bookshelves so high I could not clearly see the top, stairs leading to level and level of more books, tables, plush chairs, and couches scattered around the base of the room that did not seem to have an end. Here unlike the main room lights floated in the air, not as flames but orbs of white pure light and a grand fireplace to the right side of the room with a small sitting area is where Paimon took a seat. “ Come now Sarah, sit, we still have much to talk about. “

A book fand teacup floated past me and landed on the table beside Paimon. I realized they were the same he’d left on the stairs and I finally gaze in moving to sit in a chair across from him. “Wonderful. Now then. I told you Leo was tasked with looking after your family. The order, of course, came from me.”

I swallowed licking my lips. “Why?”

He smiled. “ Good question. Your bloodline through your father was the only Dream Walker blood the Covens were not aware of. You see a great, great, great, great, and a few more greats, grandmother of yours had a secret affair with a dream walker when her rather unfaithful husband was out one night. She, of course, the next day slept with her own husband and when the child was born thankfully the woman had been left home alone. She summoned aid from her cousin, a witch who had taken to demonology instead of her original gifts, and when the child showed the physical signs of a Dream Walker at birth the cousin sought help from a rather skilled demon. It could not be found out that the child was a Walker for both the witch and the child would be killed.”

I nodded a little. “Now this demon.” He smirked brushing lint that wasn’t even there on his shoulder away.” Sealed the Dream Walker blood under a few conditions, of course, were met and it would be time for the blood to awaken. This being you Sarah.”

I licked my lips. “The prophecy.”

Paimon nodded. “Yes. It had already been known to the demons that it would come to pass one day, so the Dream Walkers had always been watched, but when the child was shown to us well it was a chance we could not pass up. Not long after attempts were made on the young adult the child had grown to become so Leo was tasked with looking after your family line from then on.”

I sat back taking in the information. “The coven was trying to kill my ancestor?”

Paimon nodded. “It was whispered that the woman’s husband could not father children. Thus they feared what the child’s father was. Now, of course, we tied up loose ends the unfaithful husband upset that his wife had a child he feared was not his own ended up with several bastard children.”

Paimon’s voice took on a prideful tone.”It was rather ingenious you see. DNA was taken from the unfaithful husband directly and as the women slept that DNA was injected into the eggs of the women. He did not father those children in the traditional way at all, only thought he did for back then they knew nothing of genetics unlike we Demons did.”

I blinked, shocked at it all. “You went to great lengths.”

Paimon laughed and waved a hand. “It is a game child! Outsmarting humans, to reach a goal, and we have won. You are born and the Coven still have no clue you are the child or they would have killed you when you were born.”

I sighed looking away from him to the shelves of books. “Now it won’t matter.”

He laughed. “ Oh, but it does! You did something no one has done in thousands of years. At your third trial, the Fey, Demons, Vampires, Shifters, and Witches stood together against the odds. You brought fear to the Coven, with the help of your friends and family.”

I snapped my gaze back to him and frowned. “So that’s it? Prophecy over? I brought the races together for one moment and it’s done? I’m done?”

I still had things to do, I still had a quest from a Goddess herself to finish and I placed my hand on the marks she left on my arm. Paimon looked to the marks and grinned widely. I had forgotten he could read my mind. “You gained a quest from the oldest Goddess herself….”

He laughed, a burst of loud rumbling laughter that shook not only him but the room around us. I ended up grabbing the chair I sat on. “Perfect!”

He stood then. “Come, Sarah, dinner will be ready by now and after we eat I will send you on your way back to the mortal realm in your own body to do as the dark mother has bid you.”

I blinked as he showed me back towards the front hall, a happy whistle passing from his lips. I got up and followed quickly but as we stepped into where the front hall should have been we stood instead in a kitchen that looked very similar to Leo’s. “ Darling it smells wonderful!”

A woman with long waterfall midnight waves of hair turned a smile on her lips. Her hair was held back from her face by a simple ice blue ribbon that matched her eyes. When she spoke the sweet Irish lit of her voice was nearly a song. “Took you long enough you two! Sit, Sit!”

She motioned to a cozy table for four in the corner where steaks, potatoes, green beans, and rolls all still steaming sat waiting. Paimon pulled out two chairs and took the third for himself. I sat down as the woman joined us. After sitting she held her hand out to me. I waited a few moments then took it which she gave me a kind smile for. “So lovely to meet you, Sarah! Finally. I’m Richelle.”

I shook her hand. “Nice to meet you.”

I felt totally out of place but she let go of my hand and leaned over to steal a kiss form Paimon who happily gave it to her. I blinked and Paimon chuckled tossing an arm over Richelle’s shoulders. “My Wife.”

My jaw went slack and Richelle laughed, the sound was nearly as musical as her voice. “Oh, she’s such a sweet thing! Don’t be to mean to her Pai dear. Now let’s eat up. I know you have so much still yet you need to do Sarah, we won’t keep you much longer. Poor Leo must be worried sick!”

Richelle shook her head and started to eat. I blinked and glanced to Paimon who started to eat as well. I had a million questions running through my mind but started to eat. I took a bite of my meat and my mouth exploded with fantastic flavors of the steak. It was so much richer and fuller than anything in the mortal realm. I must have made a sound for both of them were looking at me clearly pleased as they continued to eat. I blushed a bit and tried to not make any more.

A light conversation started up between the two about their day. Pai was telling Richelle about the book he was reading, and she told him about catching the cow she’d made into dinner. I was shocked at the light banter and teasing they worked into the conversation. I was more at peace sitting here with a king of hell and his wife than I had been with my own parents.

When we finished Richelle took away the dishes and set them in the sink. “Right then! Let’s get you back in your body hmm?”

Paimon stood and then the three of us went out of the kitchen door. Once again the main hall was missing and instead it was a bedroom we stepped into. My body was laying on a king-sized bed, neatly tucked into the middle breathing softly my hair was braided to the side, slightly longer than before and I was hooked up to medical machines, a woman was sleeping in the corner in a chair. “You kept my body alive...all this time.”

Paimon chuckled lightly. “Well of course. I have plans for you.”

The woman in the corner stirred. “Oh, I’m so sorry sir I must have dozed off!”

She shot up out of the chair nearly stumbling. “M’Lady! The young lady has shown no signs of waking yet. No new brain activity.”

I walked closer and looked at the tubes going in and out of my body, I had an IV hooked up to my arm, a tube down the throat, a heart monitor was beeping and little wires stuck to my head to watch my brain waves apparently, which was next to no activity. “Don’t fret Doctor. She will wake soon, which is why we are here. Please remove the breathing tube. I don’t want her waking and chocking on it.”

The doctor looked at my sleeping form. “O-Of course sir.”

None of us missed her hesitation, Pai narrowed his eyes slightly. But when the tube was finished being removed my body stopped breathing, apparently it had been forcing me to keep breathing. “Time to wake up now Sarah.”

I crawled onto the bed as the machine listed that my heart stopped beating and rolled into my body.

Waking this time was disorienting. I had to fight my way into my body until finally, I jerked up, awake gasping for air through my burning lungs and a racing heart pounding in my chest. I felt small hands on my arms. “Calm down ma’am! Please, you are alright, you’ve been in a coma. Just take slow deep breaths.”

Wonder filled the voice of the doctor, and as I looked around, my eyes were tired worn out and I slumped back down on the bed at the urging of the doctor. Turning my head I saw Richelle standing next to Paimon, but Pai was human looking now. His hair was and curly reddish black, His eyes were a golden hazel that looked far to human, and his skin a warm tan compared to the pale Richelle next to him. “ Welcome back Sarah. You need to rest, sleep a bit. We can talk tomorrow.”

I looked at them both standing there, Richelle curling her arm around Pai’s and found myself drifting off to sleep.

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