Taurus

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Chapter 26

A/N: Happy New Year, guys!

I have not forgotten about Taurus. This is to say that I will be updating the book, just slow.

Ever since my college reopened, I have been loaded with exams, assignments, exams and practical work. I barely have time to write. Hence, the late update. I really did want to update for Christmas, but I had an exam the very next day.

I am trying my best and I would really love to thank all who are sticking with me through this time. I do wish to update fast and finished Taurus... but my college life would not allow me to do it.

Anyways, have an amazing year ahead of you and may all your wishes come true!

Enjoy!

***********

The sun barely showed its face by the time we walked out. This was the only hospital in this vicinity and many came here, be it an accident or any disease.

Niran slurped on the apple smoothie he bought in the hospital canteen while Rune spoke with his mom behind us. Lawan and Wirat stayed back with Aiko and Kessa and Erica promised she would call me is Zeke ever woke up.

“What did Nox say?” I asked.

Taurus sighed. “He said the nurses had to sedate Allen to put on a couple of stitches.”

I frowned. “Sedate him for a couple of stitches? Was it on his head?”

Taurus cleared his throat. “It was on his flanks.” Looking at my confused expression, he said, “He was being very uncooperative that Nox ordered the nurse to sedate him.”

That star knew how to use his overbearing presence to get things done. The creatures of earth had an inherent fear of the celestial creatures, and once we made them known what we were, we could get things done the way we want.

“So…” I drawled. “Allen is sleeping now?”

Taurus nodded. “Yes. That is one way to put it.”

I took my phone out. “I will inform Aiko. Just in case.”

Niran took a long gulp. “Draco! Why not do that weird voodoo thing?”

My fingers hovered above Aiko’s name in my messenger. “What voodoo thing?”

“The one Taurus does!” Niran said. “Enter that person’s mind, leave your message and come out or talk to them via the mind. You don’t need to take your phone out, open it, search the contacts and type your message.” he shuddered. “What a long process.”

I blinked at the poor boy. “How long has Taurus been doing this to you?”

“Forever?” he replied.

I glanced at the male by my side. Though he was relaxed, I could see that mischievousness dancing across his eyes, like he did something worthy of high praise.

“Don’t you feel ashamed to trick a poor boy?” I asked.

His face was innocent. “What trick?”

“You know what I am talking about!”

The corner of his lips curled. “I had to find a way to keep him in line.”

I shook my head. “I pity you, Niran.”

Niran frowned. “What is going on?”

“We don’t do that,” I said. “We don’t do it usually. We respect the privacy of others and try our best to stay away from invading other’s mind. We do it only in case of emergency. Among us, we do it frequently, cause we know how to shield our thoughts and just project what we want the other person to know.”

The straw was stuck in his mouth as he stared at me. “Really?”

I nodded. “You were fooled big time.”

He spat the straw. “I never thought Taurus would have such a side to him.”

I walked away, not replying to him. He did not know, but I knew. There had been so many instances in the past where Taurus behaved this way. While people admired him to be so collected and refined, I knew the tiny pranks he played on people and got a small joy from it.

He once came to Kelp Confusion and gave Elta a cake, telling it was made from the fruits grown in the Origin. Only after did she finish it, did he reveal it as made of Soul Berries, something that grew along the River of Souls and it was the fruit Elta hated. But how he managed to conceal the scent and the taste of that fruit would be a mystery to me.

He played harmless pranks now and then and watched other’s face darken in anger. He did not even spare his own siblings. But if anyone asked them, none would ever connect the incidents to Taurus.

“Why did you say to him?” Taurus asked.

“Why not?” I said. “You know what you did was wrong.”

“It was harmless,” he defended. “I never pried any information from him.”

I stared at him. “No information?”

He was silent for a while. “Perhaps about a few shipping details he forgot to tell me?”

I shook my head. “It does not matter.”

He shrugged. “Now he will forever be in paranoia every time I try to talk to him.”

“Whose fault is that?”

He just grinned like a schoolboy.

**********

We stood before the house they had given to Taurus. One of his hand held my hand, and the other held a card. He fiddled with it, not saying anything.

“You don’t want to go in and rest?” I asked.

He stared at the card. “Do I look like I need a rest?”

I took a moment to answer him. “No, but it won’t hurt to sleep for a while.”

“Then you go ahead.” He gave me the card. “I will see Aries off.”

“He’s leaving?” I asked.

Taurus nodded. “Apparently Summer Tribe is in a mess and Lyra’s sister and her mate are there. Lyra wants to see what’s going on there. Not to mention, Gemini is causing a lot of trouble there. And… Leo asked for help a while ago. So, they would go to Leo’s and then to Summer Tribe.”

“Summer Tribe can withstand that much time?” I asked.

Taurus shrugged. “I don’t know if Leo is just being dramatic, or he really needs help. Whatever, they can travel really fast and Leo just called them for a day.”

I took the card but did not leave. “Then let’s go.”

“Want to meet Lyra?”

“To see her off.”

“Would Gaelan leave with her?” he asked.

I shrugged as we walked to where Aries was staying. “I don’t know. He might, he might not.”

Lyra was playing with Tristan when we reached their residence. Leigh was smiling at them while Gaelan was getting reprimanded by Aries. Antlia frowned at Lyra and then turned away, pouting.

“Draco,” Lyra said, shifting the baby in her arm. “I have to tell you something.”

“Here?” I asked.

She gave Tristan back to his mother. “Let’s go back for a while.”

Aries glanced at us, but he went back with whatever conversation he was having with Taurus.

Lyra led us a few feet away and waved her hands. “Leigh and Gaelan can’t hear what I am about to say.”

“Why not?” I asked.

She sighed. “The few people know, the better.”

“What is it about?”

But she did not go to the topic right away. “Taurus?”

I looked at him. “Yes.”

“By the way,” Lyra said with a smile. “Riga got her memories back yesterday.”

“That’s sweet,” I whistled.

We had been far apart for so many years. It was time to group again. As much as Taurus was someone I considered to be my family, these twelve pulsars had been with me from Abyss to Origin. They knew parts of me that no one knew. We all know how vicious we all were and how we tried to tone the rage down every day.

“What’s the deal with Leo?” I asked.

She smirked. “Someone else is getting her memories back and that is causing Leo a lot of headaches.”

I narrowed my eyes and thought for a while. After a minute, only one person made sense. “A-Ara?”

Letting out a peal of laughter, she nodded. “That girl sure knows how to give others trouble.”

This was one of the best news I received today. She had always been that impulsive friend who gave headaches each day, but she was also the one who could make anyone laugh because of her outrageous actions. She was kind at heart, but not many understood her enough to know that.

My smile had answered Lyra.

“If you are free, you can come with me to meet Riga,” Lyra suggested.

I shook my head. “I am in a mess now, Lyra. I have to finish this.”

She nodded. “I understand. My memories returned early, but only after I did what I had to did I get my complete memory back. You are still on the process.”

I sighed. “I have a long way to go.”

“Do you know your way?”

I nodded. “Summer Coven. I have bad blood with the Omicron there.”

“Dave?” Lyra asked. “I should have killed that scum earlier.”

Though she meant for my good, it was my kill. And I was very protective over my preys. “That’s my kill, Lyra,” I snarled lowly. “Stay out of it.”

Lyra gave me a long look and then whistled lowly. “I thought yours was Lana.”

I clenched my fists. Though I got my memories back, I was still the same Draco Lana had tormented. I could even face Chaos head-on with a zero percent chance of winning, but I could never face Lana, not without remembering that humiliating night.

Therapy helped me. It got me back on society and gave me the confidence to date again, to even sleep with someone. It even took away that freezing numbness that gripped me whenever I heard her name or saw her. But it never took away the fear I had for her.

“I-I don’t know,” I croaked out. “I want to kill her, but I have to get over my fear for her.”

Lyra inhaled deeply. “When you contacted me first, I saw a few instances in your life. I saw the fear you hold towards her. I wanted to go to Summer Coven and kill her, but Aries told me it should be you to do that. You can’t live in fear of her, Draco. Not forever.”

“I know,” I whispered. “I really want to get over it. Taurus does not deserve it. I can’t be in fear when I am with him.”

“Are you really that generous, Draco?” Lyra asked, cocking her head. “The Draco I know is never this kind. He is ruthless in his own way.”

I frowned. “Where are you going with this?”

A smile spread across her face. “You want to live in a world where Lana lives?”

What a kind of question was that? “No.”

“You have your answer there, Draco,” she said. “You can break away from her. But if you still can’t, you can always ask Taurus to help you.”

I closed my eyes. “That guy…”

Lyra said, “This is actually unexpected you, know?”

“How so?”

“We have never seen Taurus with a guy and you are pretty good,” she said. “The others are going to have a hard time believing this.”

“They better,” I said, raising my head up. “He is mine.”

“Well,” she drawled. “No one’s that foolish to take him away from you.”

I snorted. “There will be one or two idiots.”

Lyra laughed. “You being jealous is so cute.”

“Shut it,” I snapped. “Why did you call me?”

Her laugh died. Even her laugh lines faded. “You have to do something, Draco.”

“What?”

Her tone was not right. It was on edge, like there was a fear of something, or rather fear of consequence of something.

“Omicron of Summer Coven,” Lyra said. “She holds one link.”

My eyes widened. “S-She?”

Lyra nodded. “Narah somehow gathered the links, and she gave each link to one great coven, pack and tribe. I got one link. You have to get this.”

“You were from West pack,” I said. “How-?”

“Alpha Violet was from Autumn Pack,” she said lightly. “She had one link.”

“So, besides killing Dave, I have to get the link from Boonsri? B-but if you know, why can’t you take it yourself? Why should I get it?”

“If you want your last part of your memory to be unlocked,” Lyra whispered. “You have to get this.”

“How is this related?”

She licked her lips. “If I say I don’t know, will you believe me?”

“That time when we were injured?” I asked.

Lyra nodded. “Yes. My primary memory is hazy of that day. I bet all of ours are. If one of ours were good, it would be Cassie’s. She was aware of what was happening. But, I don’t know where she is. I can locate where the other nine are, Draco, but it’s like she is behind smoke. I can’t find her. What if… what if she was born on another planet? Or… what if Cosmos never gave her a chance to heal?”

I shook my head. “No. Cosmos would have given her another chance to heal. I am sure of it. If she could give Rionach another chance. She could give Cassie another chance too. Plus, we never broke a rule.”

“I hope so too,” she whispered. “I can’t take another death.”

“Another?”

“Volans,” she said. “You don’t remember? About Ursa and…”

“And?” I pressed.

She just stared at me. “Your memory is more damaged than I thought it to be. But it does explain things. You still had the poison in you and you were still detoxifying it from your body. It explains why your memory is worse than what I had.”

“What are you trying to tell?”

She gave me a wry smile. “You helped Cosmos hide her heir. We all did, but you and Pyxis even more so.”

“C-Cosmos has an heir?”

She nodded. “She does. She even faked her death to deceive others. To deceive Polaris.”

I frowned. “Polaris… he is not what he seems to be, right?”

“Cosmos killed his race,” she said. “Cosmos and Chaos did that. How could he ever sit still?”

“But I thought-”

“Ara investigated this,” Lyra said. “We found his private line to Scylla.”

“We did?” I asked.

“You were there too,” she said. “But since you don’t remember, I will say it to you again. He has his own connections to others as well.”

“Others as in-”

“As in,” she said. “His people he protected from Cosmos and Chaos. He sacrificed half of his powers to create a space free from the poison outside the bind and allowed his people to live there. Scylla helped him do it. She lost more than him. That’s why she is always withdrawn.”

Sweat drenched my back. “Why does he appear to help us? But I never felt any of his intentions to be bad. My energy was purer than his and I could know if he was lying or not.”

“I have the same doubt,” she said, looking faraway. “Ever since we came down… should I say ever since the Bind wars, something is amiss. The balance is off. From what I know, someone is playing a game of chess and we all are just pieces who are moving according to their will.”

************

Lyra left with Aries soon after, warning Gaelan to take care of me. As if that was not the biggest insult I had ever faced. How could this kid protect me? It would be the other way round. If it was before I got my memories, I could accept her words, but now… even if I am in a weak state, I was not useless.

The only one who I would trust my back with is the star I was sent to neutralise. The star whom I was taking a video of now.

Lyra and Aries left Antlia behind who became a whiny kid, pouting and stomping. And Taurus was left placating her.

“You’re not helping!” Taurus snapped at me. “She is-” he wildly gestured his hand towards a princess who was trying her hard to contain a smirk, “-being impossible!”

I shook the phone in my hand. “I am being helpful. I am recording it.”

He stared at me with exasperation. “Are you serious?”

“If you stop panicking for a moment, you will see that she is simply playing with you,” I said. “Good job, Ant!”

“You ruined it, Draco,” her facade finally crumpled. “I wanted to see how long he would do it.”

“You would not have held it in for that long,” I snorted, saving the video in my cloud files. What if Niran wanted to see it and broke the phone? I learnt from mistakes.

“You traitor,” Taurus whispered to me.

I sniggered. “Did you not traumatise Niran for all these years?”

He narrowed his eyes. “What is he to you?”

When his voice changed, Antlia cleared her throat. “I… have things to do. Birds to watch, dogs to feed and,” her voice grew sombre. “There is a bar of chocolate in the fridge I have to protect from Ryan. See ya!”

She fled the patio of the house where Aries and Lyra were staying. Gaelan and Leigh had left earlier when Tristan became fussy.

When did she develop interest in birds and what dog did she grow to feed it? As for chocolate, I would believe if you said she would prioritise that over her life.

“What is he to you?” he asked again.

I blinked. “Who?”

He took forceful short steps towards me. “Don’t play innocent. Does not suit you.”

I pointed to myself. “I? I am playing innocent?”

“Draco,” he warned, standing just a foot away from me. “Who is Niran to you?”

“Mate of my best friend,” I answered. I pretended to think. “Someone who works for my boyfriend.”

His eyes narrowed. “Then why would you do this?”

I pinched his cheek. “You are adorable when you get jealous for no reason.”

“Jealous for no reason?” he laughed darkly and pulled me in for a kiss.

*************

He drew lazy circles on my exposed back. He had pulled me into the house where Aries and Lyra were staying when we had kissed. Though he ripped my shirt off while making out, that was all we took it.

Though he was fine with me, I could feel his confusion and hesitance whenever we became intimate. I would wait until he was sure of this. I did not want and half-assessed things.

“I heard your conversation with Lyra.” Taurus broke my thought process. “Aries and I heard.”

“She put on a shield for Gaelan and Leigh,” I mumbled. “Not for you both.”

“We… I heard some pretty interesting stuff,” he said.

I raised my head from his chest. We were currently cuddling on the sofa and though this male protested that he hated cuddling; he was the best cuddler. Not to mention, there was that scent of satisfaction rolling off in waves from him. Did he think he could lie to me?

“Like?” I asked.

Unless it was a life or death issue, I would never hide it from Taurus. Even if he was not my boyfriend, he had been one of my best friends back then. Apart from my family, the one person I used to trust was him and it would be him. And now that we were dating, I did not want any barriers between us.

“The issue regarding the heirs,” he said. “I never knew about it.”

“I don’t remember,” I said. “If I do, I will tell you.”

His wandering hand crawled up my spine. “I know. I was just wondering how much Cosmos hid from us.”

“The politics are deeper than we thought,” I said. “I once thought we were the ones who are aware of everything. But now it looks like it was a huge joke.”

“The higher you are,” he sighed. “The deeper you fall.”

I buried my head in his neck inhaled that wonderful scent. “Once I regain my memories, I have to re-evaluate myself.”

“Re-evaluate?” he asked. “Why so?”

“Cause.” I raised my head and looked into his eyes. “As much as this life was just for me to heal, I experienced a life that is completely different from what I led above. I can’t ignore the part of me who lived here. Can’t forget the relations I had here. Can’t forget my mother who did everything to raise me up. Can’t forget Lawan, Wirat and Rune for being there for me. Can’t forget what Mali did. Can’t forget… anything here.

“We once scoffed about the life that was on Earth when I was in Origins,’ I said. “We thought how fragile life was, how complicated the relationships were, how people held on to hope naively. Now that I experienced all these myself, I admire them.”

“Living among them,” Taurus said. “Taught me many things.”

I hummed.

“I also heard about Lana,” he said after a few minutes. “Aries held me back from going there to kill her.”

My eyes met his. “She… is still the source of my fear.”

Taurus’s fingers threaded through my hair. “I will eliminate that source for you.”

My heart knocked hard against my chest. There was something that was happening that made me tether to this male in front of me. Something that was connecting us through time and space. Something that was old enough to question the existence of the universe.

“D-do…” I began. “I-Is it…”

He waited patiently for me to gather myself. He was steady as the mountain, tall and sturdy. I could be a quivering mess but he would hold all of me together.

“Does it bother you?” I finally whispered. “What Lana did?”

Earth was usually steady. That would be the mistake many would make underestimating it. For once the earth was furious, civilisations could disappear.

“It does,” he said. “It bothers me so much so that I want to kill her, go to the River of Souls, revive her and kill her again. I want to break the rules we have on the dead, just so that I could torture her. I want to break her, Draco. I want her to experience true fear. I want you to be free from her. What she did… it was against your consent. That was something you had no control off. How could I blame you?”

“Does it not?” I asked again.

He caressed my face. “As long as you are comfortable.”

My vision blurred and that was when I realised tears were brimming in my eyes. Of all these years I had been alive, never had I felt emotions this strong. Even when I head Ursa died, I had gone into a few days of silence. But that was all.

As if he knew, his lips stretched to a thin smile and he brought my face closer towards his. My fingers clutched his shirt hard as he kissed me. Full of tenderness and reassurance. Like it was something sacred. Like it was a promise that was not meant to be broken.

He released me and his lips were still shiny from our kiss. But it was not that that took my breath away. It was the way he looked at me. Like he would protect me with everything he had. Like I was a treasure that was meant to be cherished.

I licked my lips and I could still taste him. “That did answer.”

He rubbed the tip of his nose with mine. “Good.”

Just as I was about to ask him about what else he wanted to know, my phone rang.

I had the urge to throw my phone away. Why was my stupid phone alway interrupting? Especially when we were becoming closer.

I would have thrown the phone away had it not been for the name that flashed. Aiko would not be calling me if something had not happened.

Sighing, I attended the call.

“Draco?” I could hear panic dripping from her voice.

Even when she was thrown in the dungeon, she was not afraid. She could see death to its face and still smile. Not many things were there in this world that would make her have such a reaction.

“What happened?” I asked.

“Draco,” she sobbed. “Allen-”

When she said the name, I sat upright. There were not many people I felt indebted to, hence Allen’s existence was special.

“What happened to him?” I asked.

Something shuffled and Nox answered my question. “I was watching over Allen. But then something came over and knocked my out cold and by the time I opened my eyes, Allen was no longer there. In his place was a message.”

Taurus’ eyes flashed. “Someone who can knock Nox down? Did Rionach herself come down to kidnap a kid?”

I sprung away from my boyfriend and looked at my shredded shirt. I waved my hand over it and the shirt reverted back to its state. “What was the message?”

“‘Taking him to his rightful place’,” Nox said. “It was not signed.”

“No scent?” I asked.

“None,” he replied.

I pulled the shirt over my head and nodded at Taurus who ran his fingers through his hair.

“It is Dave,” “I said.

“How can you be sure?” he asked.

“No one else hates Allen’s existence as much as he does,” I said.

Holding hands, we left for the hospital. Though we rarely used our unfair advantage of speed on earth, it came handy at times like this.

Aiko was shaking badly in Kessa’s arms and Rune and Niran were questioning the doctors and nurses. Nox nodded at us as if he expected us to arrive soon.

I took the letter from Nox’s hand and then threw it away. I could recognise her handwriting from anywhere. When I heard that Nox was knocked down, there weren’t many people who could do that. He was Rigel’s son!

Had Rionach been here, it would be possible, but Nox would have woken and would have fought at least for a minute.

But if it was someone stronger than Rionach, it could be possible.

“Who is it?” Nox asked.

I saw Taurus and he sucked in sharply. “I never realised how powerful she can be.”

“I just did not expect for her to come out and do this deed by herself,” I murmured.

Seeing me, Rune came over. “Who is this?”

“Who else?” I sneered. “It is Harper.”

A/N: Until next time,

~Quill

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