Out of the Darkness

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Chapter 18

Raven was the first back at the office, as everyone else was filing in she pinned a map up on a board of what I presumed was the area in which Genna lived. I watched as she marked a house with an X. She took a seat at the front of the room so she was facing us. Raven seemed to be trying to figure out where to start.

“Why don’t you begin with why you were observing them?” I offered and she nodded.

“They were becoming too careless with magic and humans were beginning to notice. I sought them out to see what was going on and to figure out if they needed to be stopped.” Raven began.

“And by stop am I right to presume you mean kill?” Jonathan asked. She nodded.

“They were starting to be a danger to the secret of magic; I observed them to find out the way they worked.” She continued.

“Which is how you knew about the device?” I asked to confirm.

“Yes that’s right-“ She began before James interrupted her.

“But then how did you know about the symbol? I wouldn’t have thought they’d be that obvious.”

“I was just getting to that. I soon realised that even though they were being ridiculously careless with magic a lot of their discussions about tactics were in private. They had a lot of spells to protect them from being heard and I couldn’t disengage any of them without revealing myself.” She told us.

“So you infiltrated them.” I said realising where this was headed. She smiled.

“Exactly. It was the only way I would be able to find out more about them and, if it had to come to it, the only way that I would be able to gain the information that I would need in order to kill them. But first I had to gain their trust, by that point I was already quite well known in the supernatural community and that made them wary. To start with I revealed a few listening bugs that I had planted myself, but it wasn’t enough.” She explained.

“I’m surprised they didn’t ask you to take down one of their enemies.” I mentioned. She raised her eyebrow with an amused look on her face.

“They did. At the time quite a few demons were causing more than a few problems for them. Considering they were on my kill list anyway I didn’t really see a problem with taking them out sooner than I had originally planned to.” She said.

“You have a kill list?” Alexander asked.

“Yes, and it’s forever changing. I have to keep my eye out for anything new as sometimes others take out someone that I was planning to or they start to become a problem themselves.” Alexander was about to say something in response to this but Jonathan spoke first.

“Perhaps we should get back to the witches?” He suggested and Raven nodded. “So by infiltrating them you managed to find out the symbol that represented them?” He asked.

“That’s right, but it has changed slightly since then. I think that might’ve been because of me though.” Raven replied and I wondered in what way it had changed. It couldn’t have been by much; otherwise she wouldn’t have been able to recognise it. Before I could Alice spoke up for the first time.

“The sword through the back of the bird.” She stated, answering the question in everyone’s minds. “You gained their trust, found out the information that you needed and then killed them. But apparently not all of them. The sword represents betrayal.” She summed up. Raven looked surprised but nodded.

“I killed all the ones I knew of and no others were ever mentioned in front of me. I stayed with them until they became too dangerous to be allowed to continue living. Even with all the information that I had gathered it was still extremely difficult to kill them off. They were very powerful and I hadn’t even witnessed the extent of their powers before I attacked them.” She paused for a moment for everything to sink in. “When I found out that Damon had erased my memory I knew he wouldn’t have been able to do it by himself. The witches from that coven were the most powerful ones I had ever encountered; they would’ve easily been able to do something as simple as erase someone’s memory.” She had a thoughtful expression on her face. “The only thing that doesn’t make sense is why they would help Damon.”

“Maybe he warned them about you.” Jonathan guessed. Raven thought for a moment.

“Well that would certainly explain why they didn’t introduce me to the others.” She paused for a moment, thinking. “Actually when I did attack them they had this look in their eyes…I think they had arranged with the others for them to show up and help. I thought in the end when they even looked defeated that they had just realised that there was no hope. But maybe……” She trailed off, leaving us to put the last pieces together.

They knew they were going to be attacked, they had arranged for, presumably the more powerful witches in the coven to show up and kill Raven. But as they didn’t show up to save their own kind that must mean……

“It’s as if they let me kill the weaker ones in their own coven. I knew they were becoming a problem, allowing humans to witness magic.” Raven said.

“The leaders of their coven were going to kill them off anyway. So getting you to do it saved them a job.” I added and she nodded.

“I cleaned up their mess and that led me to believe that they were no longer a problem. So they could just fly under the radar, under my radar, continue practising magic…” Raven trailed off again.

“And overall becoming stronger and more powerful without you knowing.” Alexander concluded.

“So them acting through Genna is them what, sending you a message?” Jonathan asked.

“Yes, the message is as clear as day to me. Their message is that even though I’ve managed to kill Damon, they’re still here. Ready to fight.” Raven explained.

I watched Raven in the silence that followed. She rested her head back against the wall and closed her eyes for a moment.

“Well at least you have more power as well now. You have the Exitium and the sword that practically makes you unbeatable.” I tried to cheer her up a bit. I couldn’t handle her looking so… so…defeated.

“It’s the ‘practically’ part that I worry about. They probably already know that I have them, everyone else seems to.” She countered. “Which means if they’re ready to come out of hiding after all this time and confront me then they are confident they can win, even against the odds.” She added.

We spent the next three days going over everything Raven had learnt about the coven. Even though it was only a portion of the members they had, it would give us a place to start. We ordered more weapons and trained harder, Raven sharing any extra knowledge and skills that she thought might help us take down this coven, using the map to try and pin point any possible location of the coven.

We had brought in any extra agents we could and Tom was working hard with the recruits, to ensure they would be ready to take on the witches. Everyone pulled in anyone they could to help and even Maya, Jonathan’s wife and their son Michael helped as much as they could.

As the days went by I noticed a slight shift in Raven’s behaviour, she appeared, to me at least, slightly worried, which doesn’t seem like a good sign.

“What’s got you so worried? You’re the only one here that can’t die.” Alexander pointed out. Apparently, I wasn’t the only one who had noticed. Raven sighed before she began speaking.

“Has it ever occurred to you, that perhaps the reason for me being so worried could be that fact alone?” She asked.

“That doesn’t make any sense.” Alexander replied. She turned to him annoyed.

“Then I’ll try and make it simple for you Alexander. I don’t like people dying because of me. Do you think that I haven’t noticed the increase in demons that have been after Melanie? Or the fact that Adrian’s daughter is also being targeted?” She was right in his face at this point.

“I didn’t realise you cared so much.” Alexander said, rather taken aback by Raven’s ferocity.

“Naturally.” Was her only response.

Alexander had taken it upon himself to try not to annoy Raven after that, especially as she seemed stressed as it was at this point. We had all ended up sleeping at the agency recently to save time getting there so we could put more time in to trying to figure out how to take down the witches. As we were settling down to sleep one night Clara transported herself in to the office.

“Please tell me you have good news.” I said to her and she looked around at the sleeping agents.

“It certainly seems like you need it. But I’m afraid it’s not going well. I managed to find a spell that I’m almost 100% sure would work but…..” She didn’t finish.

“But what?” I asked impatiently.

“I’m struggling to find enough powerful witches willing to cast the spell. They aren’t exactly….fond of Raven. I’ve been trying to convince them to help but it doesn’t seem to be working.” I sighed. “And there’s another thing. The spell is in several different ancient languages and its proving to be impossible to translate.” She explained. “I’ve tried everything I could think of but nothing works.” She added.

“I believe that you’ve tried everything you can.” Raven said from behind us and we turned to face her. “Thank you for putting so much effort in.” She added and Clara nodded.

Raven left the room and I filled Clara in on everything that she had missed. When I had finished I wondered around the agency, checking that everything was ok. I reached one room that held Adrian, his daughter and Raven. The young girl stirred and sat up, but couldn’t see me in the darkness.

“Raven, are you awake?” She whispered in to the darkness.

“Yes, what’s wrong?” She asked.

“I can’t sleep, will you sing to me?” The young girl replied.

“Sing?” I haven’t seen much that has ever caught Raven off guard but that definitely did. “Uh sure.” She went over to where the young girl was and she instantly curled up in Raven’s arms as if it was normal. I could see Raven thinking for a moment before she started singing softly. I couldn’t figure out what the words were, it was in a language that I didn’t recognise but it seemed to soothe the little girl. I can’t blame her really, Raven’s voice was incredible, you’d never think that someone who could kill within a blink of an eye could sing so beautifully. By the time the song came to its end the young girl was asleep and Raven was watching her. Adrian stirred beside them and I got the feeling that he wasn’t asleep, merely just listening.

“How do you know that song?” Maya asked, shocked and suspicious from beside me in the doorway, I hadn’t noticed she was there before she spoke, too entranced by Raven’s singing.

Raven turned, noticing the two of us and shrugged, not understanding why Maya was so curious. “I wrote that song, the only person I ever sung it to was Sierra when she was little.” She said with tears in her eyes. Raven didn’t know what to say, she didn’t want to upset the grieving woman any more than she already had.

“It just popped in to my head.” Was her only response until she added, “I’m sorry.” Maya nodded and walked away before more tears fell.

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