Chapter 32-The Devil Makes Three
“What happened to him?” I ask while looking at Mr. Silvet’s slightly new appearance.
He appears mostly like I remember, with his face and build nearly the same as his son. His hair is black now for some strange reason. The only other thing that I can tell different about him is his outspoken attitude. Before he died, I only met him twice and both encounters were brief. He seemed more reserved then. I guess hell changes people, but in his case, not for the better.
Will stands next to me dressed in a casual plaid green shirt and jeans. Beth wears a long black dress with her cloak wrapped tightly around her probably to keep warm in this cold church. She looks like she’s going to be sick. I suppose she pretty much has to go wherever Will goes since she’s his personal assistant.
The headmistress removes her hand from Mr. Silvet’s forehead. He growls up at her with his fangs extended quite viciously. Oddly, they didn’t feel the ward tremor around the cemetery when he was awakened. The police were the ones who found him stumbling around the streets after someone called into the station when he tried to bite a pedestrian out in public. That’s what Heinrich told me during the phone call early this morning.
“Damn you all to hell!” Nick’s father yells at all of us.
He pulls against his handcuffs and collapses back against the church pew he sits on with grief.
“The only one going to hell is the necromancer. Who, unfortunately, he knows nothing about. His memories have been wiped. Why are the police not here watching over him? These few officers are the only ones they sent?” The headmistress asks us with a grimace while putting the empty truth serum bottle in her cloak pocket.
“There were more here earlier. Most of them left once we arrived to test him. They’re down the block investigating the area he was found at. Some of our people are already there trying to pick up a trace of the necromancer’s magic. We should get going soon to meet up with them.” Will tells her while rubbing his chin.
He hands me a cup of warm tea Beth picked up this morning.
“Oh, thank you.” I say while gulping down the warm drink.
Beth sips her own tea and places it down on the pew near Mr. Silvet. He swats it away and the contents in the cup spill over the floor. Beth hops back and the headmistress turns to the police standing behind his pew.
“Alright, please take him to the police department. I already have warded your cars. If he tries anything we will know immediately and be on our way. We will arrive at the station tomorrow with further instructions after we discuss Mr. Silvet’s awakening tonight at Slate Mountain. Thank you for helping.” Marcella tells the group of officers surrounding Mr. Silvet.
Swiftly, the police force Mr. Silvet up and start walking him out of the church toward their police vehicles. Marcella looks satisfied, but Will keeps watching the vamps like he’s expecting them to turn around and attack us or something.
Once the cops drive off, Marcella turns to Will and I. Her long black hair is tied back in two braids falling down her back. She wears a purple blouse with black slacks. A shiny yellow clasp below her neck holds her cloak together and it matches her hoop earrings.
“Whoever awakened him is an expert in craft. If their lingering magic is found absent, the street cameras should have recorded something of use to us. The police unit will be marking off the cemetery. We must be careful to thoroughly search all areas the necromancer could have been.” Marcela announces to us.
Beth is waiting by the church door for Will with his car keys.
“They should be. I haven’t heard anything else from the police chief since you arrived, headmistress.” Will tells her.
“The hybrid vampire? He is a magic user, correct?” Marcella asks me with a knowing look.
“Yes...” I answer her slowly.
“Please, be a dear and give him this. I have composed a list of questions and would be more comfortable having a witch like you question him. Will has given me the impression the two of you are quite close. The police chief will be more willing to take it this way and not take as much offense.” The headmistress tells me.
A witch like me? What did Will tell her about Nick and I?! I gape at the small bottle she hands me. A tiny yellow sticky note is attached to it. There’s three questions scribbled in ink on it that I am supposed to ask Nick after giving him the truth serum.
“Alright.” I sigh, but I can’t help giving Will a cold glare.
He shouldn’t tell her things about me like that. He knows my situation with Nick isn’t ‘close’. He may be my familiar, but I don’t even know much about him on a personal level. I kind of agree with the headmistress that it probably is best I give it to him though. If someone directly from the coven did, the police would feel their integrity being called into question. Besides, I read the questions and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to know the answers myself.
I feel a little anxious under her unfaltering stare. Marcella kind of does come off as a little judgemental, but I haven’t really gotten the chance to know her yet. Maybe I’m just intimidated by her and her position. It would explain her weird appearance in my dream earlier. She is letting me do this so it does show she has some amount of trust in me. It will be good for my reputation with the coven too I suppose.
When I walk into Nick’s office, I find Mr. Silvet sitting in the chair across from him with two officers holding his shoulders back. He struggles against them, cursing at his own son and not sounding at all like the holy priest he pretended to be. I’m not really looking forward to this. I know Nick wanted to see if the mark on his father matches mine too.
“Ms. Parway, I must apologize for my absence at the church. We’ve been swamped writing up paperwork for the events of the last twenty-four hours. You understand how it goes.” Nick explains while leaning forward in his chair.
He gestures for me to sit down in the chair next to Mr. Silvet. I take a seat feeling funny. I guess it’s just different being in here now that I don’t work for him anymore. Without saying anything, I place the bottle of truth serum on the edge of his desk thinking he’ll get the message. I already removed the sticky note and hold it in my hands. He doesn’t say anything though and just smiles with his head cocked to the side.
“The coven just wants to clear your name.” I carefully tell him.
“Of course they do.” He replies lightly, but his voice drips with sarcasm catching me off guard.
“Oh-” I begin to say, but he reaches across the table and picks up the truth serum.
Nick spins the bottle around on his desk, letting it travel dangerously close to the edge. He catches it in his hand just before it slides off the surface.
“Get the demon witch away from me! I will not be tainted by her sinful magic.” Mr. Silvet rebukes while giving me a death glare.
Well, maybe he should just go and join the coven. I’m sure he’d make many friends. For a day that is, they’d probably kill him by around then. I scream when the officer behind his chair bites into his neck violently. Mr. Silvet’s face contorts into pain as the other officer pulls up his white shirt at the same time.
“See the mark? Here it is. Now, can we take him out now?” The officer restraining Nick’s father grits out.
I kind of had a feeling his mark would look like mine and it does. The same black six-pointed star is etched across his stomach. The other officer biting him throws Mr. Silvet’s shirt back down and withdraws his fangs from his neck.
“In a moment, Charles.” Nick tells him while removing his police vest.
Nick starts unbuttoning his black long sleeved shirt while looking at me and I avert my stare wondering what he’s doing.
“There is something you should know Ms. Parway...” He starts to say while revealing a decent portion of his naked chest and my face blushes.
He isn’t giant like officer Heinrich, but still heavy built more like a swimmer with a slimmer body. He by no means has the athletic physique Will does because he does have a little pouch of belly fat, but it looks firm because beneath it there’s probably muscle. I mean, it’s not like he has a potbelly or anything. It kind of makes him look older too and more burly than Will. When he straightens up, I don’t really notice it at all because I’m too busy staring at the demonic sign on his stomach.
How long has he had that hex mark on him? It matches his father’s and mine.
“I’m sure you have many questions and you will not like all my answers. Do you have your questions prepared? By the size of that bottle, it will wear off fairly quickly. I suspect they wish this to be recorded?” He asks me in a serious voice.
Mr. Silvet goes quiet and it kind of is more unnerving than when he was spewing his hatred of witches at me.
“N-no, they didn’t mention that. Maybe I should call them to make sure.” I tell him while starting to call Will, but Nick suddenly grabs the bottle and drinks the liquid before I can even finish dialing Will’s number.
I came here to ask him the coven’s list of questions. It’s like all that gets thrown out the window though after seeing them both having the same mark as me. I know the coven will make him take the serum again. Marcella doesn’t know they won’t take my word on Nick’s behalf. I’m sure someone else will be made to give him truth serum too.
Nick stares back at me with a blank look, the truth serum going in full effect. I turn around hearing his office door shut and see Heinrich standing in front of it watching me. With a shaky breath, I turn back to Nick. I just have to know. I don’t want to be like the coven and just assume he’s exactly like the man sitting beside me. I know he isn’t, but after my nap this morning and the strange things I’ve noticed about him piling up I have to ask.
No normal vampire would want anything to do with me knowing the coven’s thoughts on the legend. Yet, he offered me a position to work for him without gaining anything in return. There were always doubts about him floating in my mind since I first turned him into my familiar. He went along with it without getting angry. Then, he offered me a job even, it just doesn’t sit well with me.
What if he really is after the legend and wants to be some vampire supremacist like the vampire, his father, sitting beside me?
“You did this to us, didn’t you? You conjoined our magic.” I say quickly.
“Yes.” Nick answers shortly and I cross my arms unable to look at him as my heart plummets.
“How could you do this to me? You acted like you didn’t know what conjoined magic was days ago. Now, you tell me you caused this. You did this to me...w-why? Why me?” I choke out through tears, feeling deeply disgusted and even more so, disturbed.
I glance over at him and he blinks hard. The serum’s already wearing off. His head lulls forward and under a hooded stare, he raises his head back up slowly looking over at his father beside me. I’ve never seen him look so furious. His new expression sends chills down my spine and I watch his father who remains silent.
“I didn’t want to be part of something like this either. He called onto me and I had to accept because it was him. He told me if I didn’t you would die, so I conjoined your magic to mine like he wanted.” He explains as if everything he says is perfectly rational.
“Who made you do it?” I ask in a hollow voice.
“The devil made me do it.” He says simply, looking forlorn as his gaze moves back to me. I narrow my eyes at the desk sitting between us.
“No, you did this to me yourself.” I argue back with disdain, raising my voice.
He shakes his head slowly not agreeing, but I don’t buy it for one second.
My magic knocks him out of his seat and it’s only because of his vamp speed he manages not to completely fall onto the ground with his chair. A picture frame on the wall behind him falls onto the floor and the filing cabinets start to shake against my magic.
“You know how conjoined magic works. It wasn’t a one-sided effort. Subconsciously, you accepted my magic...perhaps for your own protection. There should be no hard feelings seeing as our relationship is that of a professional one.” He says in a serious voice while clasping his hands behind his back -- the serum’s effects completely gone.
His explanations do nothing to stop me from looking up at him feeling a mix of rage and betrayal.
“Does Will know you did this to me?” I ask in a shaky voice.
“No, Ms. Parway. Just you and I know about this temporary position we find ourselves in. I’m sure Mr. McCaster will be able to help us.” Nick tells me.
“You did this to me!” I repeat, yelling at him through tears.
For once, he looks shocked by my reaction seeing his office belongings sent flying around the room by my magic. His father watches looking pleased as if waiting for us to kill each other off for him.
“I couldn’t help it, the devil made me do it. I’m cursed with you now.” Nick tries to defend while dodging a book that nearly hits him in the head.
“Oh yeah? What did he look like?” I sob, but my voice trembles with rage.
I jump away from him when he appears right in front of me.
“I saw him,” He continues,“...a slimy looking goblin creature with small yellow eyes. His jaw was hanging open, the skin around his mouth torn up between needle-like teeth. He had a black robe and strange bag he held onto.” He tells me in his slow southern drawl while watching my hair float around my face.
What he describes is exactly what I remember and I never told a soul what the devil looked like. I wanted to forget! What does the devil want with Nick and why did he make him do this to us? It must be the legend.
“Please tell me you don’t believe in the legend,” I say slowly, remembering my dream earlier and seeing him sitting at his father’s desk.
“You already know how I feel about the coven Ms. Parway, but I’m compromising with them.” He defends.
“Yes or no.” I demand him to give me a clear answer.
“Yes, but I have been around longer than you. I have seen history repeat itself and I cannot pretend to not see some patterns. The coven persists to push our people aside and test our patience. We cannot be quiet forever about it. This is no new news to you, Ms. Parway. We have spoken about my thoughts on the matter before.” He explains, but I’m still trying to take in the devil making him do this.
He just seems too level headed to be capable of inciting violence on such a grand scheme. Maybe he isn’t an extreme believer in it, but the fact that he believes in it will be enough to keep me up at night.
“What about your father? How do you explain his awakening? The devil too?” I spit back not sure if I can believe him.
“I don’t know. We are working with the coven right now to figure it out.” He sighs deeply.
“All this time, I kept giving you the benefit of the doubt. I wanted to believe that you weren’t like your father, but Will was right. You’re just a manipulative liar. You’re glad the devil did this, aren’t you?” I retort.
He’s quiet for a minute as if trying to find some way to make me better understand his case. I know enough though, I met the devil once and had hoped it would be my last.
“What if the devil brought us together for a purpose? I was made in his image and so were you. It is the only thing Will and the coven will ever agree about. This our fate now. I won’t let you struggle alone and I will not hesitate to eliminate the guilty.” He answers sounding so assured in what he says.
It’s like he believes he’s speaking facts. Not crazy talk about fate and the devil’s involvement in ours.
He basically just admitted to me he’s a follower of the devil. How can he believe he was made in the devil’s image? That should prove enough he’s capable of believing in all of this madness. He rarely seems to hold any regret or emotion, ever. Not even now. He can’t stop me from reading between the lines.
He’s a corrupt and confused vampire supremacist just looking out for himself. He wants war and the hate to never end. He thrives off it just like the people who killed my ancestors. The flag hanging in his father’s office will get him killed and whoever else believes I’ll willingly aid the devil to destroy the coven.
“Don’t think I don’t know what you’re after. Why else would you have waited so long to tell me you conjoined our magic? You just want the coven to burn and to hell with peace!” I yell at him and he clicks his tongue.
He walks back around his desk and picks up his fallen over chair, but his gaze doesn’t leave me.
“I envision peace, but there will always be a price to pay for those unwilling to cooperate. Now, since we are both uncomfortable with the curse, I recommend we tell William. I would hate to see you suffer through this spell any longer with me.” He says slowly while catching a wisp of my hair between his fingertips.
“Don’t,” I tell him sharply.
He let’s go of my hair, withdrawing his hand back to his side.
“I am nothing like my father. That is what you are thinking. Isn’t it, Ms. Parway?” He asks with a scowl, but his voice is desperate and shaky.
His eyes plead for my understanding, but I don’t know why he wants it so bad. He chose this long to wait to tell me this and it does make him look guilty. He wants me to become agreeable to his predicament, but I don’t think the devil would just select a random soul to fulfill such a dirty deed. The devil had to of chosen him to do this because Nick wants the legend to be fulfilled. He would be a willing follower.
I don’t know what he wants me to say, but he has to know I can’t completely agree with him after everything he just told me.
“I am nothing like him.” He repeats in a whisper as if unable to endure my silence.
He looks at his father with hatred and Mr. Silvet shrugs his shoulders with an amused grin.
“It doesn’t matter if you are or aren’t. The coven isn’t going to care the moment they find out what you’ve done. We’ll both be executed. You won’t get a trial being a vampire and I may get one, but I’d probably be murdered before they’d sentence me.” I tell him bitterly.
“Ms. Parway-” Nick begins to say.
“My name is Valerie. I’m sorry the devil did this to you, but I think you seem a little too content by it all. I’ve been burned by fate too many times to try and play any more games with the devil. So don’t touch me, don’t talk to me and d-don’t come near me ever again.” I say with a waver while refusing to look at him.
I stand up stiffly and am expecting to be forced to sit back down, but none of the officers stop me on my way to the door. Heinrich moves out of my way and I leave the room myself taking my magic with me. It trails behind me making the other office doors I pass slam open and closed repetitively. A light bulb above my head explodes against the pressure of my magic, but I keep walking.
“How will you make it? Who else will let you work for them? Where else can you rid the demons without worry of getting caught? You need my help.” Nick tries to sway me.
He stands right in front of me blocking my escape through the sliding glass doors of the lobby.
“I already found a great job. Now, please move out of the way.” I huff.
I glance back over my shoulder and see a massive crowd of police officers right behind me crowding the police department lobby. Where did they all come from? Shouldn’t they be working? They couldn’t have all heard Nick and I arguing in his office. They all look at me like I’m carrying the plague or something. Well, I am carrying something, but it’s not a disease. It’s my magic and I suppose they are right to be afraid because it’s still whirring around the lobby quite dangerously where they stand.
Nick steps to the side and I walk by him.
“Be careful.” He mutters softly from behind me as I walk out of the police station for what I hope to be the last time.