FOREVER KNIGHTS: #20 Watchers Gathering

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SEBASTIAN - The Waking

Rosewynn Manor, Outside Meadowbrook, Grier

SEBASTIAN

Sebastian stood on the ridge above and behind Rosewynn Manor. Just above the Rosefall.

The waterfall surge past him. Dumping down the slope and into the drizzling lake below. Spanning the back of the Rosewynn Property. Though the crystal clear water was gorgeous, even this late at night, it was treacherous with so many brambles from the neverending rosebushes that framed both sides of the waterfall.

Sebastian remembered that once, The Fallen had drowned in the Rosefall Lake. They never knew for sure if that one was purely accidental or another death orchestrated by the Master of Demons.

Likely by Radix.

Sebastian was crouched on the ridge. The trees hunkered over him, shielding him from the moonlight that would give him a way up there. He was lowered to one knee. His elbow resting thoughtfully on it as he watched the dancing lights in a display of brilliance as they traversed the countryside.

Angel light.

But looking for what? He could feel others like Nora out there. Their breaths coming quicker, heartbeats thrumming as they came from their human stupor and woke into something ethereal.

She's waking them. He realized. Surprised that Nora had such power. Something he hadn't known.


How many others are there? Bast worried. Shifting to put a hand on the ground.

"What is it?" His twin approached from behind. "What's wrong?"

"Those are other Watchers being forced into a state of ascension by Nora's magic."

"That's fantastic. We need them, from what I've seen of Radix's numbers...Especially with the loss of Elsabet..."

Bast cast a sharp look over his shoulder. "We haven't lost her."

Alazar put a hand on his shoulder. "Perhaps you should consider the possibility."

"I won't. I know her."

"Do you? Or did you only know your captive." Bast winced and rose smoothly to his feet to round on his brother. "That was unnecessarily unkind."

Bast's jaw ticked with the desire to strike his brother.

Alazar's eyes narrowed. "I speak the truth and you know it. She could be a different animal then the one you got to know."

"Best stop whilst you're ahead, Brother." Bast said dangerously.

"He's right." A woman's voice rose from behind Alazareth. "I know you've a penchant for saying what you think, Lover. But some sensitivity in doing so would be wise."

She just saved him from a sound thrashing. Bast was nearly quaking with rage.

Riaura Nightway had her cream skirts lifted as she climbed the bank carefully.

Alazar sighed and turned to offer her his hand. "Perhaps you're right."

"He's only worried for you." Riaura told Bast. "He just articulates it poorly."

An understatement. But Bast was vaguely surprised. He does convey that weakly.

Alazar frowned at her.

"He's been up every night for a fortnight worrying that if you had to choose between she or yourself, you'd pick her." Riaura explained. "He's trying to tell you so. But he only knows how to speak roughly."

"Riaura." Alazar tried to stop her.

"What?" She gave him a look. "You know full well that I'm right."

"Yes, but perhaps my brother needn't know all that."

Riaura was watching Bast sympathetically.

He stared back at her steadily. Refusing to look at his brother.

"See?" Alazar told her a bit harshly. Gesturing to him. "He'll die before he harms her!"

"Sebastian..." Riaura's voice was chiding as she stepped to him. Rubbing a hand down his arm. "I mean no insensitivity, nor does he." She gestured to her husband. "But please take in consideration, that you mean more to all of us then to just throw yourself away in blind trust."

"It's not blind." He said flatly.

I know her. I've loved her for decades.


"He'll not listen to any of you." Calisto's voice called from a rocky embankment above them.

How long had she been there.

"I know my friend well." She slid down the side and hopped over a few rocks.

How'd everyone get up here? I came up here to be alone. Bast scowled as he watched her approach.

"And he is nothing if not loyal. Something you," She nodded toward Alazar. "should know better then any of us."

Look duly chastised, Alazar's mouth snapped shut.

"He won't turn on her." Calisto looked up at Bast. Great fondness written in her face. "Don't ask him to, you'll be wasting your breath."

Thank you, Calisto.

Sighing Alazar shook his head and headed down the bank.

Calisto rounded on Bast. "With that said. Have a care for yourself, you fool."

He reared back. "I thought you were on my side."

"I'm rooting for you both, more than you know. But you and I both know that Elsabet has a streak of darkness that none of us could ever tame coursing through her. And the death of Sebet destroyed her."

"She's not dead." He admitted. Looking shamefaced.

"What?" Calisto stared at him astounded. "Does she know?"

"No. Nora was able to bring her back to us. I've not told Elsabet because she'd only believe it was a trap and if she did know the truth she'd think she was returning as my captive. I never want to do that again. I'll find a way to bring her home without forcing her to."

"Sebastian..." Calisto shook her head. "Sometimes your man-logic is broken..."

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