I woke up to a text from Lainie. What it said hurt me to my very core;
Amy, I think we need to take a break. We rushed into this really fast. I’m sorry I had to do this over text. I still love you.
My eyes watered until I heard the kitchen sink come on. I walked out into the kitchen/living room and saw my mother getting some water.
“How do humans live like this? This food is repulsive.” She scrunched up her perfect face, bent her perfect frame. With that pearly white hair, those blue eyes, and forever young body, she was envied by our entire kingdom. Was.
She had put bread in the toaster and it was blackened. I ignored her question and filled up the tea pot.
“How are your powers coming in?”
“Well, I have this power that no one’s heard of. It’s called energy sourcing.” When her eyes went wide, I snorted. “What? You didn’t think you and the devil’s daughter would have abnormal abilities?”
“Energy sourcing . . .”
“Yep, it’s a real ðüå.”
“Amelia, it was never my intention to sacrifice to the demons. I was praying to the gods. I never wanted to hurt you, love.”
“Don’t call me love. You don’t know what love is.”
Vela leaned back, appalled. “Don’t talk to me about love. You think that petty human could ever love the real you? She left you, didn’t she? Humans can’t handle us. They take what they want and leave you in the dust. They can’t deal with the knowledge of other planets and intelligent life.”
“How would you know?” I spat.
Vela swallowed perceptibly. “In 1699, I came to Earth. It was a mission to gather information about Earth. I came with our chancellor and a few guards. We blended into society. We wanted to see what humans were like.” She paused and grimaced, as if in pain. “I was married to Orion and we had just become king and queen. I was forced into the marriage, we both were, so it was easy to fall in love with a human. He was strong, beautiful and kind. I wanted to take him back to Enceladus but I knew that was reckless thinking. Those seventeenth century humans weren’t ready for space. Look what they did to their witches in the 1600s. But I still became infatuated with the man. We found stolen moments. He thought I was a nurse. The day after we slept together, I told him I was from another planet. He told me I was crazy, nearly accused me of being a witch, and left. That was the last time I saw him.”
I sat down in front of my mother, at the kitchen table. I had always thought she was a monster, incapable of love. But if that story was true, I was wrong. Halfway wrong. Something struck me. “In 1699 you said?” She nodded. 1699 was 321 years ago. “Del?” Vela nodded again. I gasped.
“Delphinus is half human.”
I leaned back in my chair, processing. I wasn’t the only freak in the family. “Does she know?”
My mother shook her head sadly. “It would destroy her.”
She was right. Delphinus was extremely proud to be an Enceladian. I wasn’t sure what she’d do if she found out that she was as much an Enceladian as I was. “Did Orion know?”
“Of course not. I’m not sure I would’ve been alive to have you and Lynx if he had found out.”
I sighed. It was Saturday, no classes. But also no job. Lainie and I usually stayed in bed on Saturday’s, watching movies. But now that my mother was here, I didn’t know what to do.
“Are you going back to Enceladus?”
My mother was silent, watching me. “I cannot. I’m dead, remember? I’m going to have to live among the humans.”
“It’s not so bad,” I offered.
“But you must go back to Enceladus.”
“Your powers will come in handy when Tethys attacks.”
“’When’? You don’t know they’ll come for sure.”
“You’ve studied Tethys, as well as the rest of Saturn’s moons. You know what Queen Amara is like,” she said.
I didn’t know personally but I assumed the history books told the truth. “My powers are the same as all of Enceladus,” I said before I realized that wasn’t true. “I don’t even know how to use my energy sourcing on command. I can’t summon it. It just happens. And it’s incredibly dangerous.”
“You can learn to control it, Amelia.”
The tea pot whistled and I took it off the stove.
“Before you think about going, you need to go to your love. I know what it’s like to feel so deeply. Even though she may never want to see you again, you have to try.”
My mother was right. Curse her and her barely there motherly instincts.
I put my tea in a to-go cup and left my mother in my apartment, hoping she didn’t get into any trouble. I drove to OSU, to Lainie.
I pulled into the parking lot near her dorm building and rushed inside.
“Lainie?” I knocked on her door.
She opened the door. Her face was puffy and her eyes were red. She had been crying. “Hi.”
“Lainie . . . can I come in?”
She nodded and stepped back.
“Lainie, I am so sorry. I didn’t mean what I said to my mother. I would never kill her. They were just harsh words that came out. It’s just that, that wasn’t the first time she raised her hand to me. And back then, I didn’t have telekinesis to stop it. I never meant to upset you.”
She cringed. “I’m so sorry.” She sat on the bed. She didn’t have a roommate. “I just—I feel out of my league. With you and your family. And your entire planet. There’s just things I need to process. It’s a lot to handle.”
“I completely understand. I just needed to apologize to you.” I cautiously sat next to her. “You know, you’re not out of your league. You’re just as special and valuable as us. If not better.”
She smiled and my heart melted. “I’ll give you as much time as you need. Call me anytime. I love you.” I kissed her cheek and left.
My phone buzzed as an email came in. I drove back home and my mother was gone. I cursed under my breath. Only the burnt toast showed that she had been there. I had no way to get a hold of her. Then I noticed a note on the refrigerator. All it said was, “I’m sorry, Amelia. I’ll see you again soon”.
Thanks mom, I thought sarcastically.
I opened my laptop and pulled up the email. It was from Lynx. Oh no . . .
Amelia, things are bad. Tethys has declared war. I know, it’s worse than bad. Tethys has learned that we cancelled the treaty. But Cass didn’t cancel it. We didn’t even know it was terminated. Orion or Vela must have done it. No one seems to know anything about it. (Though, most of mothers and Orion’s staff are dead). Our people are nowhere near ready for war. That’s why we need you. We need your energy sourcing. Come to Enceladus. I had a feeling you’d say no. So Delphinus is already on her way to get you. See you soon!
Oh and it will take Del one week to get there. Instead of a month. Our scientists found a shorter way. Through worm holes.
Dammit Lynx. Del was coming to get me? Because her and I got along so well when we were younger. Not. Sure Caelum had been the biggest bully of my childhood but I still wasn’t excited to spend a month drifting in space with Delphinus. Or one week, as Lynx had written. Space travel through worm holes? It hurt my brain.
I only had one week to get ready for Del’s arrival. The people of my planet were probably still afraid of me from last year.
I had to tell Lainie I was leaving. I should also withdraw from my classes even though I would be losing money I didn’t have. Last year when Lainie and I left with Lynx and Cassiopeia, we had no notice so we left in the middle of the quarter.
I decided to take care of school first. Talking to the admissions office would probably be easier than talking to Lainie. She’d worry and beg me not to go. Not after she witnessed me using my powers on Enceladus.
Two days after I withdrew from classes, I drove to OSU to see Lainie.
“There’s something I have to tell you.” I sat next to her on the bed. “Lynx emailed me and said that Tethys, another one of Saturn’s moons, like Enceladus, has declared war. They are going to attack Enceladus. I need to be there. Delphinus is on her way to get me.”
Lainie’s face had gone pale. “Amy, that’s dangerous. You said yourself you don’t know how to use that ‘unique’ power. You could hurt you siblings or yourself.” She used finger air quotes on the word unique.
I took her hand. “I know. But I’m hoping to find someone who can train me.”
“I have to go with you,” she blurted.
“Lainie, I can’t risk you again. You’re too important to me.”
“I’m going with you.” She yanked her hand away and crossed her arms. I wasn’t going to win this argument.
“Fine. But you will be nowhere near the attack.”
“Fine by me. When will you sister be here?”
“In four days,” I said. “So what does this mean for us?” I asked tentatively.
“Well we can’t exactly be on a break when we’ll be together 24/7.”
I stared into her brown eyes. “Lainie, you know I love you.”
“I do. And I love you too. I don’t think I’ll ever stop.” Then she kissed me. I had only gone a few days without tasting her lips but I hadn’t realized how much I missed them. She pulled away and grinned, fiddling with her blue strands.