Gods And Monsters

All Rights Reserved ©

Chapter Eleven

It's ten thirty at night. I have worked a long shift, been threatened by my abusive, drug lord ex-boyfriend on Facebook, and now I'm pressing my foot on the gas and trying to outdrive a Dragon that's chasing me. And no, he's not even in his human form anymore. He's all scales and wings, claws and teeth; he looks like something from a fairytale like he's kidnapped many princesses and taken the lives of many men who tried to take what he stole.

None of this feels like it's real life. Not my hands gripping the steering wheel, not the Dragon's roars behind me, not my heart beating frantically in my chest. It all just feels like I'm going to wake up in my old apartment in Virginia and Damien will still be in jail and my car will still be in the parking lot, not blown up at all. I'll never have gone to Lacome Cove, I'll never have known that my mother killed herself or that I'm a "Daughter of Eve" or whatever. It just feels like I'm going to wake up at any second and this will be over.

Except that the rational part of my brain tells me that these thoughts are wishful thinking. This is real life, I'm being pursued by a Dragon, Damien knows I'm somewhere in Maine and the noose around my neck feels as if it's grown incredibly tight.

With shaking hands, I grab my phone and dial Ophelia's number, putting it on speakerphone as I sharply turn a corner. The streets are completely barren. It's like a ghost town. I mean, typically you'd see a police officer at the very least, but it was like everyone was staying inside with their doors locked tightly behind them. There was no one on the streets, all of the shops had been closed and even the police weren't hanging around, making sure no other girls got kidnapped. I thought the whole thing to be kind of strange until I remembered the two old ladies I'd overheard talking in The Mean Bean earlier today. The way they spoke of the possibility that the things that happened years ago seemed to be starting up again. Maybe the older residents understood that something was wrong with this town and were smart enough to keep themselves and their families out of it. It made me wonder if Mindy had gotten home okay.

Ophelia answered on the third ring. "Hello?" Her voice was still full of energy; she hadn't started to go to sleep yet.

"Ophelia, I'm being chased by a Dragon." Behind me, as if proving I'm not lying, it gives this loud, Drogon from Game of Thrones roar.

"Where are you?"

"I'm not far from The Mean Bean. He came out of nowhere. I was able to get into my car and drive away but he started chasing me almost immediately." I see the Dragon swoop down and he grabs my car with his hind legs. His strength causes the glass to shatter and the metal to dent as he carries me up and away.

I open the door, ready to jump out but the Dragon has already taken me so high up that jumping would be suicide.

Ophelia is calling my name repeatedly on the other end of the phone, asking me what's going on in a panicked voice.

"We're flying," I say to her in a shaky, breathy tone. "We're in the air and we're fucking flying, Ophelia."

Ophelia takes a deep breath and when she speaks, her voice is so steady, calm and cold that it forces me to pay attention to her and not the fact that I'm hundreds of feet in the air.

"Hold out as long as you can, Natasha. I know just the person who can help."

The Dragon finally drops my car. There's the sound of popping and my body slams to the side, making me fall into the passenger's seat. For a moment, I'm disoriented and can't make out where I am. My body still feels the effects of my car crashing from the Dragon's clawed hind legs to the ground.

I eventually force myself to pay attention and I let my eyes adjust to the darkness. The sound of running water fills my ears first. When I look over to where the sound is coming from, I realize that there's a river. I can't see anything in the dark, just the water splashing and heading toward something I can't see. Then, I look to my right, away from the river, and what I see makes my blood run cold.

A grotto. It's large and ordinarily, I would have said I'd never seen anything like it. It didn't look anything like any pictures of grottos I'd ever seen. It was made to keep people there for long periods of time and not for a vacation spot to take a cute Instagram picture. It was exactly like the grotto I'd seen earlier this morning on my coffee cup from The Mean Bean. I looked back at the river and surely enough, it seemed to match up. The river, the grotto. All that was missing was the fairy sprinkling dust over the river.

Three men came slinking out of the caves and I pressed myself further in my seat, staring at them in defiant fear through my car's shattered windows. They were buff with what looked like tribal tattoos running down the thick bands of muscle on their arms. They looked at something beyond me right as my passenger's door was snatched off—I mean, clean off—and I was being pulled out. I held on to the car seats and kicked at my attacker. He was the same man who had tried to kidnap me in The Mean Bean parking lot, that I was sure of.

He looks at the other guys for help and one of them comes around and drags me straight out of the car. He's a lot stronger than the other guy and fighting him seems like a bad idea. Still, I struggle. Ophelia said I just had to buy time while she got the help we needed. She said she knew how to stop the Dragons and save the girls who were inside.

All I had to do was buy some time.

The stronger one—a man with ginger hair—dragged me forward, toward the entrance of the grotto. When I struggled, he squeezed my arm so tightly that it makes me see stars; I stopped struggling after that.

"Don't damage her," the one who had taken me—the one with the curly hair—said. "She's more special than the others."

"She's the one you said has the Medallion?" one of the others asked.

Curly didn't respond but I assume he must have nodded because the one dragging me along said, "You did well. The king will be pleased." He turns to look at me and I flinch away from his gaze, the way he leers at me makes me feel sick. "Imagine, finding such a rare jewel here. I hope the king will give me a turn with her."

"I found her," Curly said. "If anyone gets to have her after the king, it should be me."

The fact that they were talking about me like I was some kind of thing to be toyed with pissed me off. I felt the Medallion grow hotter and hotter, vibrating on my chest like it was responding to me; like it was trying to tell me something. Elijah had told Ophelia that I was no longer human that day I overheard them in the library, but it certainly felt like I was. I didn't feel like some powerful badass. I didn't feel like much of a badass at all.

As we walk deeper into the grotto, I don't actually see much. Just a lot of wide open space and a few girls curled up into the corners, seemingly holding their breaths as the four Dragons walk by with me in tow. I recognize the couple of girls I see as the ones from the news or from the many posters plastered all over the street, begging for any information to be turned over to the police to bring these girls home.

Finally, we come to a more open area where a chair—that looks like it's supposed to be a throne—sits. In the chair, sits a man and he's looking straight at us as soon as we walk in like he's been waiting for us. His eyes are fixed on me in particular and he's still studying me when the guy dragging me along shoves me forward hard enough for me to stumble but not fall. He definitely pushed me hard enough for the Medallion to fall out from being tucked beneath my shirt, though.

His eyes fall on it and he smiles. The smile isn't a particularly nice one, just one that looks like he's enjoying himself.

"They said you were the keeper of the Medallion, but I didn't believe it." As he speaks, he slides out of his chair and comes to stand in front of me. In his eyes, there is a wild kind of excitement and he reaches out to touch the Medallion. As soon as his fingers come into contact with it, there is a sizzle and he snatches his hand away. "The stories are true, then," he continues, nursing his burnt fingers. "You are a Daughter of Eve." And then he tilts his head back and laughs. "Imagine," he said between laughs, "that we would find a Daughter of Eve. How rare! Rare things are so much more valuable that beautiful things." He stops laughing quickly, like something from a horror movie and just looks at me. "Although, you are beautiful, too."

He steps away from me and I allow myself to breathe. He's crazy. More than crazy, he's erratic. It's one thing to be kidnapped by a crazy person—I mean, that's bad all on its own—but it's another thing to be kidnapped by an erratic Dragon.

"Take her to my bedchamber," he told the one who dragged me in. "Tonight I'll take her." He looks at me and gives me a smile that does nothing but makes me feel sick and raise goosebumps on my arms. "A child between a Daughter of Eve and the King of Dragons. How rare that child would be."

And the crazed look in his eyes almost scares me more than the fact that he's going to try to make me have sex with him.

In my mind, I give a prayer that Ophelia and whatever she has planned will hurry the hell up.

Continue Reading

About Us

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered publisher, providing a platform to discover hidden talents and turn them into globally successful authors. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books our readers love most on our sister app, GALATEA and other formats.