Hidden Souls

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Overheated

The sweat from my brow drips down the bottom of my chin and drops onto my pillowcase. My insides are overheating but my hands shake from the chills rippling through my body. A spider moves out of the corner of my eye, attracting my blurry vision to its small form on my nightstand. For a split second I can almost see its many eyes staring into me, luckily it fades quickly to a black smudge. I reach out my hand in a daze to touch it but the fever stops me in my tracks making my body convulse.

Asher had left to get something from the infirmary not too long ago, maybe a few minutes… or has it been hours. I can’t tell. Whatever Cala did to me, my body is not reacting well and neither is my mind. Thinking straight left me long ago and every few seconds I blackout. If there was anything coherent going on in my head right now it would be just one thing; cold. I’m so cold.

My shaky legs carry me out of my bed to find the closest bathroom. I’m not sure how I made it. One second I was in my room and the next I was sitting under a hot shower head, fully clothed.

I used to take baths similar to this when I was in gymnastics. The long day would hit me like a meteor. My body would ache so bad I wouldn’t waste anytime falling in the shower and turning the water to ice. I suppose this isn’t quite the same, since the water is basically burning my skin off.

For the first few seconds the water feels like heaven and I take a deep breath of relief. This allows for a moment of clarity and instantly I know that I’ve made a large mistake. The steam only leads me to feel worse, overheating me more then I already was. I try with all my might to reach up and change the water temperature but I slip and find myself unable to move.

I’m not sure how long I sat there, becoming hotter and hotter by the second. Asher came in yelling to deaf ears and immediately turned off the water. I don’t him carrying me to my room, but somehow I ended up back in my bed.

“What the hell were you thinking?” Ash scolds me as he puts something cold on my head, which helps a lot more then I would’ve thought.

“I was cold.” I mutter back, my throat scratchy and dry.

“Huh, and here I was thinking you were one of the smart ones.” He jokes and gives me a playful annoyed look… at least I’m going to tell myself it was playful. “Your clothes are soaked. Do you have a shirt on under this hoody?”

I nod my head yes and swiftly he lifts the hoody over my head. The cold hits my bare arms and I shiver.

Ash pulls my sheets up over my chest. “Cala sure did a number on you didn’t she? I’m gonna look at the burns she left on your shoulders, hopefully they aren’t too bad.”

He lifts up my arm slightly to get a better look. His eyes widen and his mouth gapes open and closed like a fish.

“What? What is it? Is it bad?” I stutter, trying get a look but my head is too heavy for me to lift.

“No- I mean yes- I mean it isn’t bad but well… it is bad, you know?” he rubs the back of his neck and winces. I don’t even know how to respond so I just stare at him in confusion. “It’s already started to heal but the thing is, well, the thing is-“

“For god’s sake Ash, just spit it out already!”

“Alright, alright. Don’t get your beany in a twist. It’s just that… Cala she didn’t just burn you… she” he bites his lip and coughs into his hand as he says the last part. “marked you.”

“She what?!”

“It’s okay, I’m sure it doesn’t mean anything. Think of it more like a cool tattoo or branding.”

“Branding?!”

“Ooh bad choice of words. Ignore that last part, I’m sure it will heal and disappear in no time. Besides if it’s permanent it’s pretty damn coo-.”

“I think I’m gonna throw up.” I blurt out and swallow harshly. My sore body and overloaded mind are not mixing well in this moment.

“Bathroom it is.” He helps me to sit up. Just before he can lift me, I lean over the bed and vomit up everything in my stomach. “or my shoes.”

“I feel much better.” I say and lay down, feeling the heat in my head slowly subside.

“Great.” He drawls out sarcastically.

I’m able to lift my head up more and take a look at the marks on my arms. The left one looks like a circle -from what I can see- with other swirls on the inside of it. My right is about the same. I can’t really make out any good details since my vision is still a little blurry. I’ll have to look in the mirror later.

That bitch really did brand me.

“How’s she doing?” Candace says from the door before coming in. Her brother is at her side, holding her up slightly.

“Ask my shoes.” Ash mutters and briskly walks out of the room, not looking back.

“God, I didn’t think he could be any more of an ass.” Carter says as he helps his sister sit on the edge of my bed.

She smacks his arm slightly and gives a firm look. “Ash has a lot he has to worry about right now, give him a break. Besides you haven’t been the greatest to be around either lately.”

He shoves his hands in his pockets. “Sorry Candy you know, just with the New Moon coming up and everything-.”

“That isn’t your concern, I’ll figure something out.” She says in a worried tone, then brings her gaze back to me. “We’re still all trying to figure out how to handle everything, same as you. Are you in any pain?”

I want to ask her to explain more, but now doesn’t seem like a good time. “No not really, I’m just cold.”

She lifts her hand to feel my forehead. “Hmm, you’ve got a fever.” Without hesitation she lifts up a small satchel like bag from her side.

It’s decorated in beautiful colors and has different types of crystals hanging off the side. She reaches in and brings out a small vile of liquid with herbs and flower buds on the bottom. A little bit is put on her finger and she rubs it across my head, leaving a cool feeling behind it.

“Your fever should be gone in about an hour or so. Just keep the blankets on and a cool rag on your head. As for your arms… I can’t reverse angel magic.”

“So, these marks…?”

She only bites her lip in response.

“Great.”

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