It took some time for me to become stable enough to handle the truth but, once I was, Meiva shared with me a premonition that she had been having off and over for the past few years.
These premonitions were of a girl so powerful that she would destroy the world unless stopped. Of a girl who was bound to her son in ways that ran deeper than affection and love.
This girl, as you have probably guessed by now, is me.
According to Meiva, I am not only the first non-Romani psychic empath born in centuries but by far the strongest.
Unlike the members of other tribes, the ones who can only wield simple magic, there are no limits to my powers or what I can do. There is no strength of magic I cannot do and nothing I cannot have if I am determined to obtain it. Unlike the others, I don’t use my connection to the Earth to harness my powers, my magic drawing from somewhere old and dark.
This also means that I am plagued by constant visions of the past, present, and future.
Lucky me, right?
Now, had it not been for the fact that I had just recently died and been brought back to life, I might have struggled to process a word she said. It would have been even harder for me when she informed me that, until I was no longer a threat to literally everyone, I would not be allowed to return home. Without proper training and self-control, I would be easily influenced and easily manipulated by someone with better training. They would be able to control me, use me as the ultimate weapon.
Not only that but, without the proper skill set and training, I could and might bring the world crumbling to its knees simply from experiencing too much of one emotion at once.
It was at that moment, hearing about the immense chaos that I was capable of with using only my mind, that I pushed away any hopes I might have had about resuming my former life. I resigned myself to a life of solidarity, refusing to put those I cared about in danger ever again.
Instead of working on how to handle and control my own feelings, I cut them off completely. I hollowed myself out.
It was the easiest of all my options.
Meiva believes that this is why I lack control over my visions. She believes this is why they come whenever they want to and rarely when I call on them.
She says this is why, despite hours of training and meditation, she still sees me as a ticking time bomb of doom.
Some things never change, I guess.
According to her, a ‘true seer’ can look into whatever point of time she wishes. A ‘true seer’ can use her visions to show her all possible outcomes of a situation so that she will make the best decision.
The fact that I can’t do the things I should be able to do hasn’t stopped me from trying on a semi-daily basis.
I close the door to my bedroom, lighting candles and placing them around the rug that Abraham wove for me. I shut my eyes and try to clear my mind. I focus on the sound of my own breathing and the rise and fall of my own chest, demanding my visions lead me to the thing that has been hunting me.
Bright lights flash behind my eyes.
I find myself in a dark room, the smell of death hanging heavily in the air. The ground is wet and I slip, my hands coming back to me covered in a thick, sticky substance. I bring them to my face to find them slick with blood. I bite back a gasp, not wanting to risk alerting whatever is here that I managed to will myself here as well.
Quietly, I follow the trail of blood to its source, a body lying limp on the ground.
His face is ashen, lips a sickening shade of blue. His mouth moves but no words come out, the sounds muffled by the constant flow of blood.
I catch the glimmer of the knife as it rushes past my face and into his stomach.
My eyes shoot back open and I jump to my feet, my heart pounding wildly in my ears. It has been less than five minutes since I went under but it feels like I was trapped in there for hours.
I should have known better than to practice without Meiva or Abraham around to guard me. I could have gotten trapped in my vision, stuck forever in a trance-like state.
I feel for the shield that I placed around my mind before I went under, breathing easier when I find it still securely in place.
One of the first things Abraham taught me was how to shield my mind from being intruded upon. I almost fainted the first time I saw my own eyes illuminated, the sight bringing back painful memories; the feel of those memories so strong that I shook the entire camp.
From there on I caught onto his training quite easily. Without the constant pulling and nagging of all those unwanted thoughts, my powers were simpler to handle.
“You are nowhere near ready,” Meiva warns, scowling as I shove a few more items of clothing into my travel bag. “There is still much for you to learn. There is still more you need to know.”
I shake my head. “I can’t let this happen. You don’t understand, I saw him. He will die unless I do something to stop it.”
“I know what you say because I saw it too, but there is something you need to know. There is something I need to tell you, something I have been holding onto for a few weeks now.”
I stop packing, recognizing the tone of guilt and urgency in her voice.
“A few weeks ago I started searching for whatever has been hunting you but I have had no luck locating it. My visions start out the same way every time, with my searching for this creature, but they quickly twist and turn dark. They warp to a vision of you, of your future. You are there, in that place, covered with blood. There is so much blood and you are crying, losing control. Everything goes dark and I lose sight of you. I cannot see you or a future in that place, I fear it ends there. I fear that is where things end.”
“So, you’re telling me that my future completely drops off the radar and you are just now sharing this with me? What the actual hell, Meiva?”
“There time was not right, not until now.”
I roll my eyes. “Of course it wasn’t, but only because you never thought I would go against your wishes and go back there. I mean, why say something when you first saw it when you could just hold it over my head at the right moment, right? I mean, it’s not like it’s my future or anything.”
“You cannot risk going back there,” she urges, her words filled with something she hasn’t told me. “You know the dangers you pose to them if left unsupervised. There is something evil waiting there for you, I can feel. I fear that, should you face it, you make take us all down with you. You are not yet ready to face something of that caliber.”
The door to the small cottage I was gifted flies open, Abraham, standing at its entrance. From the look on his face, it is clear to me that Meiva called and warned him about what I was doing before she came here.
She must have been watching me again.
Damn fortune teller and her damn visions. Of course she would have him on standby, just in case her reasonings didn’t work and I was certain to leave. She knows that our bond makes it harder for me to tell him ‘no’.
I watch as she gives his shoulder a quick squeeze before departing the house, leaving the two of us alone.
He steps into the house, fingers sweeping through his rain-soaked hair as he brushes the strands away from his face. I smile, noticing just how much he resembles his mother when he looks at me with the same concerned look on his face.
They both share the same perfectly bronzed skin, tanned from long hours spent working outside in the sun. However, instead of sharing his mother’s raven locks, Abraham was blessed with wispy chocolate waves that fall lazily over their similar golden eyes, complete with green flecks.
He closes the door behind him. “You don’t have to do this.”
I can feel every inch of his worry.
“Look, I am one hundred percent certain that your mother filled you in on what I saw, so you know that I have no choice but to go. You know why I have to do this.”
“She told me enough that I know you are about to make a huge mistake. Nothing good can come from you going back to that place and you know this too. She told me enough to know that you might never come back. How can you even be considering leaving when you know it could mean your death? Do you know what that would do to me? Damnit, this is exactly what I was talking about earlier. You get these ideas in your head and no one can talk you down from them. The second that you found out those Mystran were coming for you, god, you made it your own personal mission to take them out. You did everything you could to lure them out of hiding and it almost got you killed a half a dozen times. But would you let it go? No, you just went right on putting yourself in danger, just like you are now.”
“I can just let him die!” The walls of the cottage tremble at my every word, warning me that I am now walking a very dangerous line. “What am I supposed to do, Abe? Am I just supposed to ignore what I saw? Am I supposed to let it happen? Or is this about something else? Maybe you’re not as okay with this version of me as you say. Would you prefer I go back to being that pathetic girl who was scared of her own shadow? I can’t do that, that girl died. I was given these visions for a reason and I can’t keep ignoring them simply because it would put me at risk. It’s not right!”
“And what if that vision is of your own death? Then what? I won’t be in your head this time fighting to keep you safe, not that you listened to a damn word I said back then anyway. Bringing you back the first time was a bonafide miracle and it isn’t something I am sure I can do again. The risk is too high and it’s not worth it. I know you feel how bad of an idea this is because I can feel it too. You can’t even think about them without causing an earthquake but now you’re suddenly ready to go back there? Just because you’ve shut yourself down doesn’t mean you aren’t still a threat. Or have you forgotten that I can feel everything you feel? I can feel those emotions, feel them trying to get out of you. I can feel the way you struggle to keep yourself together, even around me. It is not your job to save the whole damn world!”
“Not the whole world.” I shove past him, tossing my bag over my shoulder. “Just him.”
The bus stop is only four miles from camp and, while it isn’t the longest distance I have ever walked, the idea of making the trip at night makes my stomach turn.
My hand slides into my jacket pocket, my fingers slipping around the small cellphone I have not touched in years. Abraham purchased a new one for me during our first trip into town but I was never able to bring myself to get rid of this one, now I am thankful for that.
I turn it on, selecting the contact number for a person I hoped to never have to call again.
“Hello?” the exhausted voice on the end of the line answers.
“Where is he?”
“Son of a bitch.”
“Where. Is. He?”
“Makenna, he’s been missing for two days now.”
“I’m coming home.”