With Alenia now gone from sight, it seemed the worst was over. But it would soon be discovered that things were far from being finished.
“Damn it,” said Sage, summoning his sword. “It was a trap.”
“What do you mean?” asked Aiko. She then looked in the same direction as Sage and found a horde of black, winged demons hovering at the far end of the building. By the way they were focused on the group, their intentions seemed clear.
“This doesn’t look good,” said Sage.
Before the demons could make a move, an army of angels appeared in the sky behind the group. They wore silken white garments and carried magnificent swords. Jaycee was the first to notice them. “Look,” she said.
“Unbelievable,” said Aiko, getting her first look at the newest arrivals.
“Why aren’t they fighting?” asked Sage.
“It looks like they’re waiting for something,” said Aiko.
It became clear as to what the factions were waiting for when James floated up from behind the side of the building. There was an equal distance between he and the angels and he and the demons.
“James,” said Jaycee, eyes glistening in the light of the cherry moon.
“Sage,” said Aiko, staring wide-eyed at James. “Is it just me, or do you not remember James being able to float in mid-air like that, either?”
“Alenia said something about this not being the James we remember,” said Sage. “What we’re seeing is the product of his two halves becoming one.”
“Please tell me that’s a good thing,” said Aiko.
Alenia appeared in the distance. “Damn it,” she said. “They started without me. Why was I not informed of this?” She then made her way back to the roof. “Well, I wasn’t expecting this,” she announced, eyes on James. “I would have thought you were going to wait a little bit longer before making yourself known.”
“James,” shouted Jaycee, prompting him to look her way.
“Quiet,” exclaimed Alenia. “I’m not through with him yet.” After taking some time to calm down, Alenia addressed James. “So, James, I take it you’ve come here for a reason. Is it because you want to come back with me?”
James gave no reply as he was still staring at Jaycee.
“I’m still waiting for an answer, James,” said Alenia. She was once again given no reply. “Don’t you think it would be in your best interest to say yes?”
“Why have you brought so much attention to this?” asked Aiko. “Now everyone’s going to know about us.”
“You naïve little fool,” said Alenia. “No one can see a thing. For when we stand beneath a cherry moon, we are taken to a place not confined to your world. No one has any idea as to what’s going on up here.”
“We’re in another dimension now,” said Sage.
The demons began growling.
“Better give us an answer now, James,” said Alenia. “There’s no telling what my demons are capable of doing when they’ve been shown such a lack of respect. I would hate to have them take their frustration out on your friends. They are still your friends, right?”
James remained silent as he stared at Jaycee.
“Perhaps a show of their power will help you make up your mind,” said Alenia. She then pointed at the angels. “Kill them all!”
The demons flew toward their foes, prompting the angels to do the same. The factions met near James and began battling around him. Not as much as a flinch was made by James, who was going to let nothing break his eye contact with Jaycee.
The angels had no problem vanquishing the demons. Such a minimal effort did they use that not a single angel sustained damage in the fight. The demons had looked like nothing more than flies being swatted out of the air.
“There’s plenty more where they came from,” said Alenia. After those words were spoken, another horde of demons appeared behind her that was near ten times the number of the previous group. “See what I mean? Maybe this time they need an easier target.”
Before the horde could attack Jaycee, Sage and Aiko, a burst of golden light appeared just feet from the group. Its radiance was unmatched by anything the three had ever before seen. But even so, they were able to look upon it.
So magnificent was the spectacle that even James and Jaycee broke from their eye contact to stare at the light.
“I don’t like the looks of this,” whispered Alenia.
An angel made of the golden light then emerged. Just by spreading her wings, the golden light grew and consumed the army of demons, completely obliterating them. Alenia was wise enough to disappear before the same could be done to her.
Something about the angel was familiar to Jaycee. “I know you,” she said.
Just as the Angel of Golden Light had taken her first step toward Jaycee, a group of angels landed between them, preventing any contact. With what looked like sadness in her eyes, the Angel of Golden Light ascended into the sky. The rest of the angels followed her, and before long, they had all completely vanished from sight.
Alenia re-appeared on the rooftop. “Well, James,” she said. “Are you going to come willingly, or am I going to have to force you?”
James said nothing as he stared at Alenia.
“Damn you,” exclaimed Alenia. “Give me your answer now!”
A cylindrical blue light appeared around Alenia. Before she knew what was happening, Alenia was attacked by countless streaks of electricity. Tormented screams burst from her and she was brought to her knees from the pain.
When James turned away from Alenia, the cylinder disappeared, sparing Alenia from further punishment. “You bastard,” she said before collapsing onto her side.
“James,” said Jaycee.
Immediately after his name had been spoken, James hurled a ball of blue light at Jaycee, Sage and Aiko. It exploded when it landed, taking the three off their feet and sending them crashing to the rooftop with tremendous force.
“James,” whispered Jaycee, who was trying desperately to remain conscious. “Why?” The last thing Jaycee saw before succumbing to her injuries was James spreading a pair of gray wings, then flying off into the empty night.