Editor’s Note: Get caught up on Demon by checking out Part One.
She walks pass the hunters. Her worn wingtip boots echo along the cement floor as she approaches the casters. The isolated location of the abandoned building was a strategic place to corner the demon. But luck is not kind. The avarice demon is able to cast one last spell. Luck can be so fickle.
She kneels and opens the apothecary case that one of the casters brought. Inside is a multitude of little drawers and glass bottles filled with different concoctions, with the vials of oil stored on the right side of the case. She begins to methodically open each one and sniffs its contents. She is quite sure, she can find what she needs. The castor’s case is rather elaborated.
“What are you doing?”
The caster nearest to her asks though it seems more of an exclamation. She could understand, kits can be personal and someone looking through it might glean information about the strengths and weaknesses of the owner. Etiquette states that her nosing around someone else’s kit is improper.
Well, etiquette needs step aside. Because right now there is an avarice demon’s carcass barely fifteen feet away from them. Its body needs to be dealt with quickly. Since luck is cold with their affections tonight.
“Looking for the right blessed oil. I don’t know about you but I’m not fancying for another fight.”
She says with an ease, as she keeps on picking and sniffing vials. The next one she opens is sweet grass. Sweetgrass would have been a lot more helpful at the beginning of this whole ordeal. Maybe then luck would have been kinder with their affections. But it is of little use thinking about it now. At least the vials seem to be organized alphabetically. Which is good. Only a few more letters left to go.
“The demon is dead. It can not come back from what you did.”
The caster on her right says in a matter of fact way.
“That is true.”
She responds. Vanilla, she scented, the vial is another bust. She puts it back and takes another one.
“So, why must you burn it with blessed oil. Wildfire will do, its only a carcass now.”
One of the surviving hunters says behind her. That is good. It meant their magic is healing their bodies and the casters should also be feeling their magic replenishing. She takes a quick glance at the casters. Not so much like ashen death now as the color is coming back to their faces.
“You see, there’s a problem. You know that I know that. But if some ghost or spirit who just so happens to be in a mood of possession… we get lucky, with a frisky ghost or spirit that has just enough juice to re-animate an avarice demons body. Well? Let’s just say it’s better to be safe than sorry.”
She picks up the next vial. Violet. She wants to curse so badly. Violets, while usually very lovely are of little help at this moment. Tarnation, why are there so many vials!
“I didn’t take you to be frightened so easily.”
Someone says but she isn’t sure who. She is too concentrated on finding the right vial. If the oil isn’t here, a powder could work. Still oil would be better especially for this demon. But after a beat she did answer, it was only polite.
“Yup! It’s why I’m alive. The need to live is strong within me. Now where is that oil? Yes! Jackpot!”
She finds the Wisteria oil. Taking it, she runs towards her coat and old leather bag. She takes out her leather pouch and flips it open and takes the vial of powder she needs. Putting the pouch back into the bag, she pops up and runs towards the dead demon. She pours the oil on its head and in its heart cavity. Then, she scatters the powder all over the body and she whispers, “Shao.”
The scent of wisteria is in the air but there is a hint of sandalwood in the background. The body blazes in a white-blue flame, it feels hot and cold at the same time. Wildfire burns through everything, nothing left can be of use. The body burns away quickly leaving only the cement floor.
She walks over to the caster’s case and puts back the vial of oil and shuts it. She then languidly walks over to her own coat and bag. She tucks the vial back in the pouch and puts the pouch into her bag and shuts it.
“How did you find us?”
The lead caster asks in a demanding tone. Not at all happy that she is here.
“I didn’t, the council sent me.”
She puts on her gray overcoat. Buttoning it up as much as possible to hide her bloody shirt. She will definitely need to do laundry today or the blood will set in for sure.
“The council sent you? How did the council even know?”
She slings her leather bag over her shoulder. She faces him and answers.
“Don’t know, didn’t ask. They point, I go.”
It is a lackluster response but it is the truth. She didn’t bother to really ask. Help was needed so she went, it is as easy as that.
“I expect nothing less from the council’s dog.”
She has heard it before. But it was amusing to hear it coming from him.
“Well, it is part of the job. You should know.”
He bristles at the comment. The others can feel the magic charge and shift between them. Both subtlety fighting for dominance.
“I don’t know how you manipulated the council into accepting you but you are not one of us.”
He says heatedly. His magic is nearly restored and it feels itchy under his skin. He wants to fight, so she looks at him and grins.
“Look, friend. I let the dog thing slide, I even let that little demon comment slide. But, I only did it because we are technically on the same side, so let’s leave it at that.”
She answers in a friendly knife-like tone. It is frightening and the others begin to retreat, sensing a fallout. The magic is getting intense, as it gives off a soft hum like a swarm of bees.
“Do you honestly think the council will protect you? Being what you are.”
His temper is starting to color his voice
“You mean human.”
She quips quickly back.
“I will bring you before the council!”
“That’s fine. I’m not gonna stop you.”
She answers with a grin of amusement.
“I challenge you!”
As the words leave his lips the magic stalls. A challenge issued is a serious matter. It can’t be taken back if answered to. It is binding. At its lightest, a duel would mean injury. At its gravest, it would mean death.
The grin is gone, as she fell into solemnity.
“If the council agrees to it then I will duel you, Soren.”
She takes a step closer to him, austere in her gait. They are now meant to grasp hands and shake in agreement. Instead, she gives a greatly flourished bow, snatches his hand, and holds it to her heart.
“Until the appointed time.”
She says in a farce lovers tone as she kisses the back of his hand.
Soren, dumbstruck for a moment, quickly snatches back his hand and glares at her. She begins to step backward, while having one hand over her heart and the other reaching towards him; mimicking the actions of a bad actor leaving their beloved. She gives a final flourished bow. Then, with a dramatic turn that billows out the back of her buttoned up coat, she leaves, leaving them in a stunned silence. Except for Soren who appears to be in the throes of an aneurysm.