The Return of the Beast Sequel to The Haunting of Hillcrest Manor

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Chapter Eleven

The morning sun came up as the three of them for the first time since their journey began got a really good nights' sleep. They all could tell the difference the moment they woke up. Damien of course didn't need to sleep at all so when the others finally woke up, he already had a fire going and breakfast already cooking.

"Oh my god, Damien!" I didn't know you even knew how to cook." Elizabeth said as she stood up and stretched from where she had slept all night.

Damien didn't know what to say with this compliment. Demons don't complement each other, ever. They each just did what is expected of them and that was all there was to it. Now that he was with these humans he was going to have to get use to their ways and he really was trying hard to fit in with them.

"I can't believe you cooked meat." Nicholas said, in a teasing voice which was completely lost on Damien. Getting some disgruntled remark back from Damien that no one understood a word he had said. But definitely got his meaning.

"Now Nicholas, let's not be so harsh, shall we. He's really trying to respect our wishes and our ways. Let's give credit where credit is due now." Elizabeth said, knowing the remarks that he had said didn't sit very well with Damien. He really was trying hard to fit in with them and she didn't want Nicholas's weird sense of humor to dissuade in what progress that he had made up till now.

Nadia walked over to the fire pit and tore a small piece of meat off the spit that was cooking there and placed it into her mouth. "That's absolutely delicious! Damien. Whatever is that, I've never tasted anything like that before in my life?" She asked, smiling up at the demon who stood probably two feet over her.

"It is a rat." He replied simply.

That caused Nadia to spit the piece she still had in her mouth out onto the ground. "I'm so sorry, I didn't mean any disrespect but I've just never tasted a rat before." She said trying to recover her composure. The other two just turned around so Damien and Nadia couldn't see them covering their mouths to keep from laughing. It was such a comical site but they knew it wasn't right for Damien to see them holding their mouths closed so their laughter wouldn’t come out and upset him even more. He was trying his best to please them but oh my god, a rat! She thought to herself.

Once they pulled themselves together, Nicholas and Elizabeth walked over to the fire pit. The rat actually did smell really good to them and they both decided they might as well try something new.

"I also have found some quail eggs this morning but I had no idea what to do with them. Normally I would bite off the end of the shell and eat it like that. But I know you humans have a real dislike for eating anything raw."

"Oh Damien, I'm very proud of you." Nadia said, then lowered her head down for a moment in embarrassment. She wasn't use to speaking to men or in this case a demon. But every time she looked at him she had this really funny feeling inside her.

Damien wasn't sure how to take this compliment from her so he just mumbled back something to her and then remained dead quiet.

Nicholas and Elizabeth just looked at each other. Both knowing what these other two were feeling. Nicholas just winked at Elizabeth as they sat down quietly around the fire.

Nadia had already pulled out a skillet, cracked open the eggs and placed it on the fire. As she did this she asked Damien to watch how she did it. "They'll be ready in a couple of minutes," she said.

He was fascinated by the color and texture change of the eggs as they cooked. Nadia scooped them out onto plates for each of them. Then she took the rat off the spit and sliced it apart and placed that as well on each plate. This pleased Damien so much but he really didn't understand why it pleased him so much. He started wondering if these new feelings he was having had anything to do with the company he was keeping. Or was it something else.

Once they all finished their breakfast they packed up their camp and were ready to leave. They were now just waiting on the Iron Sisters. As if the sisters knew this, the fog re-appeared and started slowly moving in an easterly direction. They all mounted their horses and followed as they did the day before. "When do you think we'll actually get to see the Iron Sisters?" Elizabeth asked. But no one had an answer for her.

"They will appear to us when it is time for us to see them." Damien responded.

"Have you ever seen them before, Damien?" Nadia asked as she rode next to him.

"No. I have not. I just know about what they are capable of doing. No demon would ever cross into their domain."

"I don't understand. You're a demon and you're crossing into their domain? Why aren't you afraid? “Nadia asked.

"Because Nadia, I was invited," was all he would say in response.

Again they all rode in silence following this misty fog for what seemed like hours. Finally as before the fog stopped, letting the small party rest. They all dismounted and stretched out their achy muscles. Elizabeth never thought that riding a horse would make you feel so sore. Not far from where they had stopped was the most beautiful waterfalls any of them had ever seen. As they all approached it they could feel the misty droplets of water coming from it. "That is absolutely beautiful!" Elizabeth said as she dipped her hand into the water. They were all mesmerized by it, even Damien taken by it to the surprise of the others.

Unknown to any of them but the fog was becoming much denser now until it was so dense none of them could see anything in it. They couldn't even see their horses that were tired up a few feet away from them. Damien saw it first and got the attention of the others who all turned and were totally shocked by what they saw.

Behind them, stepping out of the misty fog were four of the Iron Sisters. Their gowns blended in so much with the misty fog that when they chose to speak to someone it was like they appeared out of nowhere. They all were wearing pale, white gowns that were bound tightly at the wrists and waist by demon-wire to protect their clothing from the holy fires of the citadel volcano. This was the only place on the earth that had the adamas rocks needed so the sisters could extract the witchlight stones from them and add them to their powerful weapons. This gave the weapon the ability to glow brightly if they were ever touched by any of the Shadowhunters.

They were a group of human born creatures that had angelic blood flowing through their veins. They had long pointed ear, long black hair, purple color skin and bright green eyes. At birth each Shadowhunter was brought to the Iron Sisters who placed a protective spell on them so they could preside over the Shadow World. Their main purpose was to keep the peace in the Shadow World and to keep it completely hidden from all other creatures on the earth or in the world below. They had to protect both worlds from coming together or die trying. That was their whole purpose and mission in life. Their primary weapon was an enormous silver sword that was shaped like any other typical sword with a straight double edge blade. On the hilt of the blade was made of the purest adamas rock and hand-carved elaborate designs of outspread angel wings emerging from the point where the blade met the handle. They were so heavily made that it caused a great deal of agony for the Shadowhunter just to lift it, let alone wield it. But having all of these qualities gave the swords such power it was possible if it came into the hands of evil than the swords themselves would turn instantly from being used for the purpose of good to being used instead for evil. It could summon demons and control them, to rule them from the dark side. Every demons ultimate desire was to kill a Shadowhunter just to get these powerful weapons so they would be so elevated above all other demons in the hierarchy of the underworld. Therefore every Shadowhunter vowed to destroy their own blade before they would ever let it fall into the hands of a demon.

The foursome could do nothing but stare wide-eyed at these strange mystical creatures standing before them. None of them up till now had ever seen anything like them before and didn't really know what they were supposed to do.

Finally one of the Iron Sisters who appeared to be in charge stepped a little closer to them. "We do not ever allow visitors to our land. We desire to live in complete isolation from the rest of the world. But we have made an exception for you."

"Thank you for allowing us onto your land." Nicholas said, not knowing what else to say.

The Iron Sister who was speaking to them nodded her head when he had said that. She now put both her arms in front of her with the palms of her hands facing up. "Welcome to our land. I am Sister Magdalena. I am the head mistress of the order of the Iron Sisters. We have been expecting all of you and we know why you have come."

Nicholas had no idea how they possibly could have known about them coming here. But in this world they now live in, anything or everything was possible.

The Iron Sisters all appeared ageless, both ancient yet unwrinkled and their eyes were a bright, glowing orange the color of flames, giving them a very ominous appearance. "If you would follow me the other sisters will tend to your horses and gear." With that she turned around expecting them to follow her into the misty fog that surrounded her.

The foursome looked at each other briefly. They all knew that they could do nothing else but to obey her commands and follow her. One by one they each turned over their horse to one of the other sisters and headed into the thick dense fog. None of them had any idea of where they were going from here but they had to put all of their trust in the Iron Sisters for it was destined for them to come here.

Sister Magdalena stopped near the base of the citadel volcano and turned back to look at the small group following her. Her hands were folded tightly in front of her as she spoke. "You will stay here until you are fully trained on the use of all our weapons. You will be provided with food throughout the day since you are human." Then she glanced over at Damien, "since you are a demon you will also be provided with nourishment as well that you require. Use this time wisely, you need to rest for your training begins tomorrow morning at dawn." The next moment she was gone.

The group looked around the area where they would call home until such time that they were fully trained on the new weapons that the Iron Sisters would provide before they could possibly be allowed to leave their domain. They saw all of their supplies had already been taken off their horses and neatly placed on the ground around a fire pit that had a large supply of wood neatly stacked next to it. Along with a fire already going in the pit.

"How did they do that so quickly? We left the waterfall before the other sisters took our horses and supplies. And now our camp is completely set up in the same manner that we set it up every night?" Nicholas asked, but got no reply at first from any of his companions. "I'm not complaining or anything...."

"Nicholas when are you ever going to learn to expect the unexpected. That this world we live in now is so very different than the world you remember." Elizabeth said, trying to remind him of the circumstances of the changes going on around them now.

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