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

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Chapter Fourteen

The following morning they were all up early, ate their breakfast and were on their way to the border of their own territory which was only about an hour's ride away from where they had camped overnight. Once they cross that borderline they all knew they would be on their own without the protection of the Iron Sisters. Elizabeth's mind was on last night. Their loving making had reached new heights. She loved Nicholas so and was glad to have had the time with him before they faced the horrible danger again. Hopefully with their new weapons from the Iron Sisters that were effective against the demons they would succeed in their mission and seal the portal to the underworld. She had to keep her mind on their ultimate goal and not keep allowing herself to think of the more tender moments with Nicholas. All of their lives depended on being alert at all times. She just hoped she was up to the challenge.

Nicholas could tell by the look on Elizabeth's face what was going through her mind. His mind was also thinking along the same lines as hers. This was going to be the hardest next few days of their lives. He hoped that they were prepared enough for it and none of them would be killed or worse. They had to rid the earth of these horrible creatures. They must save the world as they all knew it, if they didn't it wouldn't be worth living in anymore.

They finally reached the edge of the border. Sister Abigail appeared out of the foggy mist to speak with them one last time. "This is where I leave you. I hope you will remember all that we have taught you." And then she was gone. The four of them looked at each other without saying a word. They all pulled out their weapons so they would have them in hand because they knew the moment they cross that border, the demons were going to be on them, instantly.

"If we're all ready, then let's do this!" Nicholas said, in a very commanding voice. The four of them spurred their horses on crossing the border at a full gallop, weapons in hand hoping the demons would have a harder time catching them at this speed. But that thought was very short lived though, for the demons had no problem what-so-ever flying down on them from the sky. They were capable of much more speed than the group gave them credit for. Damien knew but he did not want to dampen their courage so he remained quiet.

They could hear the sound of the demon wings as they swooped down on them. Nicholas was attacked first, the demon tried to dig its claws into Nicholas's back to pull him right off his horse but he was ready for them. He raised his sword, cutting and slashing the first demon almost in half, killing it instantly. Another one came almost immediately, trying the same thing but now Nicholas was beside himself. Stabbing and piercing the beasts as they swooped down on him, one after another.

Elizabeth was suffering the same fate. She used her dagger in the same manner as Nicholas did his sword to defend herself. It was more efficient then she could have ever imagined. The horses now were running at full speed out of control, frightened by the winged beasts attacking them from the sky.

Nadia had her bow in hand and shot a constant flow of arrows at the beasts, hitting their mark every time but there were just so many of them.

Damien was riding behind her, he would grab every demon by the throat or wings or any other part of its body he could get a hold of and take it out and then would throw them down to the ground with such force the demons would scream out in shear agony.

They all knew that their horses couldn't keep up this speed or they would run themselves until they were completely exhausted and would drop to the ground, dead. Leaving their riders on foot. At this point they all pulled their horses to a sudden stop and dove off of them. They formed a circle with their backs to each other to give them some kind of protection. Each swinging their weapons at the continuous attack of the demons, stinging them with each blow. They were all covered in blood now but they didn't care. They just kept fighting. They didn't have a choice. Nicholas's razor sharp blade would slice into the demons that approached him sending them screeching back into the air to nurse their wounds. Nadia continued a steady stream of arrows, not realizing that she had an endless supply of them. Each one would hit its mark, sending the creature back into the sky. Elizabeth handled her dagger with perfection, killing as many demons as she came into contact with. The dead bodies of the beasts were starting to pile up so high it was making it harder for the group to try and defend themselves.

Damien knew at this point the others would not be able to continue at this level of energy even though they were running on their own adrenaline. They would soon tire and when that happens, they were all going to be doomed and the battle would be lost. There was only one way out of this and that was for the meeting of the rings. As dangerous as it was for the ring bearers it was the only solution they had left to them. There were just too many demons for them to handle, even with their new specialty weapons from the Iron Sisters.

Elizabeth had the same thought as Damien as they both looked at each other briefly and knew what had to be done. They brought their hands close enough, allowing the two crystal rings to meet. Instantly the bright, shining light came again as it began to swirl around and around the two of them gathering speed with each rotation. At once its power had its effect on the demons who stopped their attack at once. They remembered from before that they were no match for this power and reluctantly retreated for now. They would have to come up with a different plan of attack. It was imperative that they find a way to eliminate this threat of the meeting of the rings and only Bael would know how to do that.

Damien knew they needed to break the bond of these magical rings as did Elizabeth but neither of them wanted to. They were being over-whelmed and drawn in by the power of the rings. The sensations that were flowing through their bodies and minds were indescribable. Both of them became so engrossed with this power that they remained locked by the crystal rings themselves, it was like the rings now had a mind of their own. Both of them totally refused to unlock the bond and had no intention of what-so-ever returning back to their own world. This was what it was meant to be. It was their destiny!

Nicholas and Nadia stared at the other two. On one hand they were relieved that the demons had retreated but now, they both were extremely worried about what the meeting of the rings had on Elizabeth and Damien. They all knew the dangers but that was the only way to stop the demon attack or they all would have been killed.

"What can we do, Nicholas? They're not separating as they did before. I do not understand why?" She said, now terrified of what was happening to the two other members of their group.

"I don't know either, Nadia." On one hand I know they didn't have a choice, it was the only way to stop the demons from attacking and completely destroying us. Even with our new weapons from the Iron Sisters it still wasn't going to be enough."

Nadia began to cry. "Have we lost them... forever Nicholas?" She sobbed, leaning against his shoulder as he cradled her like one would a child.

He just held her and tried to comfort her, not really knowing what to do at this point or how to separate them from the rings without causing them all more harm or even death. "Is there any way you can contact your grandmother?" He asked, hoping she would say yes and maybe the old gypsy woman would have an answer for them.

"No. I cannot do that. Only Elizabeth had the power to connect with her."

Nicholas just shook his head not knowing who else to turn to. The only two people in this world that knew what to do in this situation were connected to each other in such a way that they were beyond reaching.

***

Bael was furious! He started throwing any and all gargoyles or demons for that matter aside if they just happen to be in his way. The demon in front of him who brought the news of Damien and Elizabeth's connecting their magical rings together infuriated him to no end! All the beasts scattered now, not wanting to suffer his wrath. "I want those rings and I want them now! I do not care how you do it but do it! Go back now and do not return here again until you have them!" He screamed at such a high pitch it made all the demons and lower creatures cower by his mere voice.

The demon who had brought the news scurried out of the throne room as quickly as possible. He had to return to the other demons who were waiting for him to return from reporting the news to Bael. Many of them really didn't expect this demon to return at all. They knew Bael and he was not going to take their defeat by the rings very well. When the demon finally did return, they were all very surprised at seeing him still alive. "Well, how did Bael take the news of our most recent defeat?" The leader of the demons asked.

"Not well!" He reported. "How do you think he was going to take it?" He replied back, sarcastically.

"Did he tell you how we are supposed to defeat the bearers of the rings that are holding us at bay here?"

"No! Are you kidding me! He said to bring him the rings any way we can and not to return until we do. That is all I have to report at this time."

The leader waved him away and sat down. He instructed all the other demons to come up with a plan to dispose of the ring bearers and retrieve the rings as their master had demanded of them. None of them were very happy, they all shot fire out of their mouths at each other while they all tried to come up with a new plan of attack.

***

Nicholas and Nadia decided that they had better set up camp here for the night. There was absolutely nothing they could do to help Elizabeth and Damien now. Maybe one of them or even both of them would realize what danger they were in the longer they stayed connected by the rings. But as long as they were still connected then at least he and Nadia would stay safe from the demon attacks. Nicholas gathered some wood and started a fire as Nadia prepared something easy to fix for their dinner. They moved around almost in a daze because they both had concluded to themselves but hadn't voiced it aloud yet that Elizabeth and Damien most likely wouldn't be able to return to them, ever. It had been just way too long now. They all knew the risks the two of them were taking but it was their only hope at that time. There had been just too many demons. They had killed so many but more kept coming, the dead were piling up so high it was making it almost impossible for them to keep defending themselves any longer.

Nadia finished cooking as they both sat down and ate in total silence. Each one of them were now feeling the loss of their loved ones.

"Have you thought about what we are supposed to do next?" She asked Nicholas after she finished eating.

"No. Not yet. But I think we had better talk about it or at least come up with a contingence plan before tomorrow morning."

"Yes, I totally agree. I don't think it's a really hard decision to make." She said.

"What do you mean by that?"

"Well we have two choices as far as I can see. One, if a miracle happens and Elizabeth and Damien separate from the rings then we will have them back with us."

"And the other choice you have in mind?"

"The second option if the miracle doesn't happen then we should pack up our camp and high-tail it out of here while we still can. We still have a mission to complete. Hopefully we will be able to make good time since the demons will still be focused here, on Elizabeth and Damien. We can't let their sacrifice go to waste." After her last sentence she broke down and cried as Nicholas once again cradled her like one would a child until she fell asleep in his arms.


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