The Dark Bloom (The Faery Meadow Book 2)

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Chapter 4-Back to Hell

Elaine saw Colt step out in front of her. No longer was his hair a deep blackish-blue. It was a pearl white like she remembered it being when they went to the seer before. His black wings were now on display behind his shoulders as he quirked a brow searching their surroundings for the missing faery man.

“Welcome to hell,” Colt murmured warily to her still not seeing Lorcan anywhere.

Elaine brushed the dirt from her dress. “Thanks.”

“Where did flame hair run off to?” Colt asked curiously. Elaine shrugged her shoulders while looking around their dark surroundings too.

She didn’t know how they would be able to find him when it was so dark out. She wondered if he just landed a little further away from them, and if that was the case, he would be able to hear them and find his way.

Elaine cupped her hands around her mouth calling loudly, “Lorcan?”

Suddenly, she saw a red set of glowing eyes hiding in the shadows in front of her.

“Um, I think that’s him,” she told Colt uneasily.

She started to walk over toward the red glowing eyes. However, Colt put his arm out blocking her path.

“There are many things with red eyes out here. Believe me, that is not Lorcan,” Colt said with reproach.

He knew Elaine had yet to glamour herself to appear a demon and he guessed the same case would be for Lorcan.

It was important they find him as soon as possible, but also equally important he get rid of the creature growling now in front of them.

Elaine thought Colt’s comment made sense since they were in hell and she kept her eyes trained on the demonic thing as it stepped closer. She could tell it was some kind of animal. Colt sent a shadow in the direction of the creature.

When the shadow left Elaine’s line of sight, they both remained silent. Then the creature made a terrible shrieking noise as if it was in pain. A sharp snapping sound followed, but a moment later she saw the shadow retreat toward Colt.

She knew he killed whatever it was, but the fact he so easily did it was just a little unsettling to her. “W-well...I guess we won’t have to worry about being attacked.”

“I’m glad that wasn’t me,” a heavy voice breathed in her ear causing her to screech in surprise.

She turned around looking up at Lorcan who patted her arm before shifting his gaze to Colt. The two glared at eachother, but Colt was the one to break the tension.

“Well now that you’re back. We can get a move on.”

“So how far are we from wherever it is we’re going?” Elaine asked while following Colt blindly.

She assumed his vision was used to the darkness of the domain and was not too keen on being left behind. Lorcan walked by her side with his cold stare glued on Colt’s back.

“There are several towns in hell. We’re just going to stay at the first one we pass. Also, you both should glamour yourselves. Demons don’t take kindly to outsiders here,” Colt explained.

“Glamour? Lorcan, how do we glamour ourselves?”

Lorcan scoffed. “So we will be killed for what we are, is that you’re saying? Why didn’t you tell us to glamour ourselves before we got here?” Lorcan asked skeptically, “You know, seeing as I could have died that moment I got separated and was completely out in the open!”

Colt stopped in his tracks ready to throttle the faery’s throat and leave him behind, but instead, he rubbed his face clenching his jaw with disdain. When he finally turned around and met Lorcan’s expectant stare he had construed a calm facade.

He reframed from lashing out and spoke in a monotone instead, “This is my first time taking anyone other than myself here. I cannot appear in my true form in the human realm. You are right though, I should have discussed this with you beforehand. Just make yourselves appear to have white hair, black wings, and pale eyes like mine. It will be good enough for now. We won’t be here very long to raise suspicion. Although, it is uncommon for demons to travel in groups,” the demon admitted.

“Easy enough,” Lorcan remarked sounding blunt. He turned to Elaine, “Imagine yourself as he just told us to be.”

Elaine did as he suggested, but she yelled in protest when he blew faery dust onto her face. Some of it got in her eyes and she blinked several times. When she rubbed the rest off of her face she looked down at herself.

To her amazement, her clothes had changed into black pants and a black shirt. Her hair had indeed turned white too and her skin seemed paler like she imagined it to look in her mind. She peered over her shoulder noticing her wings look as black as Colt’s.

She was stunned at the success of her glamoured appearance, but all the same, was she worried about Lorcan’s red faery dust that got blown all over her.

“What have you done to me?”

“Helped you,” Lorcan replied.

“You’re trying to m-make me your mate again!” Elaine stuttered and then continued, “You know I’m not supposed to breathe in your faery dust.”

Her cheeks blushed when she heard him make a strange purring noise as his glamoured black wings flickered out of sight to be replaced by his real red ones. They glowed brightly and Colt looked at him with rage.

“You can’t force her to be your mate. She doesn’t want you!” he yelled.

Elaine rushed away from Lorcan and went to Colt’s side hearing Lorcan make the weird noise again. It made her stomach feel all fluttery and just...wrong. She didn’t want to admit something was forming between them, but by now she knew the truth would be hard to ignore.

Colt’s attempt to unmate her from him had failed.

Lorcan’s eyes looked glazed over and he seemed completely out of it as he stood still staring at her. Colt walked up to him and clapped his hands in front of Lorcan’s face. The faery made a low guttural noise and darted away from him over to Elaine. Elaine’s glamour completely dropped as he grabbed her face and leaned in taking her by surprise.

“Stop!” Elaine whisper-yelled.

Lorcan snapped out of his daze and stumbled away from her looking shocked. Elaine shivered and hugged herself as Colt watched Lorcan with a calculative stare.

“I’m sorry...” Lorcan said in a quiet voice while glamouring his wings.

He hated the way Elaine looked at him now with zero trust, but more than anything, hurt. He wanted to hug her, but she knew she would turn him away. Elaine spit up some of her own faery dust into her hand and tossed it at herself. She was excited to see her glamour herself all on her own successfully.

“Who knew faeries throw up on each other,” Colt mumbled while continuing to walk ahead of them.

Colt’s words made Elaine feel self-conscious and she wished she could make a joke out of Lorcan’s strange behavior, but she just couldn’t bring herself to. The best she could do was smile and forget about the weird incident.

She saw the shame on Lorcan’s face as he refused to look at her and she pitied him feeling he didn’t mean to do what he did. She didn’t want to think they were mates, but...

“You couldn’t help it. You won’t do it again, right?”

Lorcan’s heart sped up hearing her soft tone directed at him. He wanted to laugh at her contradictory words though because the truth was he really couldn’t control what he did and it very well could happen again. Still, he offered her a small grin and nodded his head in agreement.

After about an hour of walking around dead trees and pits in the ground in the dark, they finally arrived at a town.

Colt grunted while passing under the rusting archway. “No talking from either of you until I say so.”

Most of the buildings in the town were either made of scorched looking black brick or dilapidated sheets of metal and charred wood. The streets were made of crushed bones that looked long worn down into the dirty gravel sidewalk they walked over. Soon enough, they spotted demons similar looking to themselves. Elaine still followed closely behind Colt watching as they passed demon after demon. Some of them openly gaped as they watched them.

So much for blending in, Elaine thought nervously. She hoped the demons couldn’t see through her glamour. If it was faltering though she thought Lorcan or Colt would at least let her know.

From out of nowhere, a demon girl who looked around her age walked up next to Lorcan. Lorcan pretended to ignore her presence by looking forward with a blank face. However, the girl locked arms with him and tried to pull him away with more strength than him. Colt stopped and turned around.

“May I take him?” the demon girl asked Elaine with a mischievous look in her eyes.

Without another word, the demon girl took a dagger out of her pant leg and teasingly dangled it in front of Lorcan’s face. She was very tall and matched Colt in height. Elaine thought she looked just as muscular too.

Colt rushed by her and over to Lorcan, or more accurately, the demon girl threatening him.

The demon girl backed away from Lorcan with confusion written all over her face. Just like that, her demeanor totally changed. She hissed at Colt as if to ward him away. Then Colt did something Elaine never saw him do before as he shifted into his shadow form. The shadows parted from him and a demonic laugh escaped him. She never heard him laugh like he did now.

He sounded like a completely different person.

She watched bewildered as Colt revealed himself. Instead of his normal demonic appearance, he appeared now to be covered in some kind of black sticky goo. His eyes were still just as pale as they usually were. However, his wings hung menacingly toward the demon girl. A crowd formed around them and Elaine subconsciously took a step back closer to Lorcan.

“I-I-I didn’t know you were such of high rank,” the demon girl gulped while backing away from Colt.

“And I don’t care,” Colt chided. Suddenly, he vanished, only to reappear in front of the demon girl a breath away.

The demon girl began to cry and pleaded for her life. Elaine thought he was doing a good job intimidating her and hoped the rest of the demons would get the hint and back away from them.

Abruptly, Colt grabbed the demon girl’s head with one hand. He squeezed her head like a lemon with an emotionless look. Then the girl’s head burst. An awful amount of dark blood squirted over Colt and along the floor. Elaine’s heart landed in her throat as she watched the demon girl’s body being eaten by the other demons. Colt turned to look back at her. Then he faced the other demons again who were feasting on the dead demon girl’s flesh.

“Enough!” he roared at the starved-looking demons.

The demons’ heads perked up at the sound of Colt’s demand. Then they looked around bored with their blood-covered faces. They scurried back into the crowd like cockroaches and disappeared departing from the remains of the demon girl’s carcass strewn about the street.

Colt’s form slowly shifted back into his white-haired self.

“Good going. Now, I assume you have a place in mind for us to stay?” Lorcan asked loudly.

Elaine was baffled Lorcan wasn’t affected by the horrific scene as her. She just washed Colt squeeze someone’s head so hard it exploded after all.

Colt sighed. “What did I say about talking?”

He didn’t wait for the faery to respond. He continued walking down the street expecting them to follow. Lorcan nudged Elaine along with him seeing her still frozen in shock.

“He won’t wait for you, but I always will.” he told her. Elaine gripped his offered hand weakly. Her gaze didn’t leave the skeleton of the demon girl until they rounded a bend in the street.

She knew she had to keep it together. Colt wasn’t a blood-thristy demon like the monsters who ate the demon girl, but it still surprised Elaine how quickly and easily he killed the demon.

To keep her sanity, she reminded herself this behavior was to be expected since they were in hell. A small part of her was glad for Lorcan waiting on her though. There was some amount of comfort in knowing he was a faery like her and not used to seeing such gruesome things.

Eventually, they arrived at a tall brick building. Elaine gathered from the chicken scratch handwriting etched on the sign out front hanging overhead of them it was a hotel. She thought it was strange how hell of all places would have a hotel and it made her wonder what other places they had too.

“We’ll stay here,” Colt announced.

Lorcan nodded his head looking somewhat pleased because to him the building appeared in better condition than most they had passed by.

Elaine wondered why so many of the buildings looked like they had been through fires and the hotel was no different. Now that she was standing closer, she could see the brick of the hotel used to be more red in color, but now it was all black and crumbling somewhat too. The building appeared at least fifty stories high and despite their location it seemed to be modern.

There was a big glass window near the front double-door entrance. Through the big window she could see inside the lobby. A short pale white-haired demon creature that looked more like a goblin was sitting on a stool behind what she guessed was the front desk.

Colt opened the door for her and Lorcan and the three of them went inside.

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