One of the last two natural-born Demon Hunters left in the world, Chase is part of a team that includes her father Caleb and her boyfriend Alex.

They are intent on capturing an enemy who escaped the trap they'd set for several members of his kind.

They want one of them alive to see if they have any information about who killed two of their allies and the whereabouts of Jak the other Demon Hunter.

However tensions between Chase, Caleb and Alex might just threaten the mission and endanger themselves and everyone on the planet.

As the threat they face could prove bigger than anything they've ever confronted before.


14. Undeserving

Mal saw Chase walking down the stairs, he saw how angry and sad she looked he had never seen her look that down and sensing she wasn't in any mood to talk, and as now didn't seem like the time to discuss their problems he let her go.


He went up the stairs to where Caleb stood by himself just looking at the body of the cult woman.


Can you believe my daughter weeping over the body of this piece of trash.


Mal was still surprised how often Caleb could tell when someone was approaching him.


"Why was Chase crying over her, I don't understand, I haven't seen her cry over the loss of people she clearly cared for, so why was she weeping over her."


"She was going on about how I crossed a line, how she had as well, but not to the extent I have, that neither Baine nor Isobel would've wanted this much revenge carried out in their names."


"She might have had a point,"


"Might have a point," Malikhi interrupted him to say, not even trying to hide the disdain in his voice for Caleb suggesting that he only might have a problem with what he had done.


Caleb ignored that as he carried on explaining.


"Like I said she might be right, but she explained it in such a whiny, self-indulgent way, she annoyed me too much to agree with her."


"Going on about what it will do to her having that in her memory for the rest of her life."


"I still don't understand why that would make her cry, I get that Chase's emotional state is all over the place at the moment, but that woman wasn't just another one of the enemy."


"Chase was right there she had to have heard the venom she was spewing at us about her master destroying us all." She has to know that woman was probably a lot worse than the rest of the ones whose bodies and body parts are scattered all over this place."


"Believe it or not I agree with you, that woman was a terrible Human being thoroughly undeserving of the compassion my daughter showed her."


"Explain it to me then, what was it about her that got to Chase."


"It seems out she was the mother of the boy we were pursuing."


"Oh, yeah, I guess that might hit her hard," Mal said, then added. Meeting the mother of the boy she is party to killing."


"That you made her a party to."


Caleb reacted angrily to that.


"That boy, was nothing he has been just a worthless Demon worshipper his whole life."


Mal couldn't help himself finally getting back to the topic he'd come to confront Caleb about and he simply said it.


"That worthless Demon worshipping boy, you mean the one you murdered in cold blood."


Caleb looked at him a flash of anger on his face at what Malikhi had just said to him.


"Yeah, Alex told me what you did."


"I don't need to explain myself to you, you're a subordinate."


"Yes, you do, you arrogant bastard, you don't just get to kill a child and then do a run through on your own daughter's mind to block her attempts to stop you because you knew that she was the only one who would even try to stand up to you."


"The only one aware of what you were up to with the backbone to stand up to you, because sadly we both know that Alex still admires you too much to face you, not just about this, but about how out of control you've been since your friends' deaths."


"I don't care whether you listen to me, I don't care whether you accept what you did was despicable."


"I just know I'm done with you, after this horrible mess of a mission. I'm off the team, for good this time and I will do my best to get Alex and Chase to do the same."


"Mal..." was all Caleb got out before the floor shook and his words would've been drowned out by the deafening sound of the explosion as the first rocket hit the outside of the building and the shock waves knocked them both off their feet.


Caleb and Malikhi had both barely gotten back up on their feet when the second rocket struck this time it exploded inside the already damaged and unstable structure.


A fireball originating from the impact point on the first floor shot up through all the levels catching everyone unaware.


Particularly Alex, who had stood by himself listening to Mal and Caleb talk was almost hit by a large chunk of the ceiling above him collapsing after the first strike, but was then caught by the tail edge of the fireball and caught on fire.


He was lucky that it was mainly his combat uniform that caught the most of the flame ignoring the pain from the searing heat he felt on his skin through his gear he was able to drop and roll on the floor to put it out before, the only exposed part of his skin, his face got burnt.


Alex got back to his feet and began to check on the other team members. Three of them weren't responding to his calls via radio or psychic frequency, Chase among them.


Caleb and Malikhi got to their feet, but were both knocked over again, both had to roll out-of-the-way to avoid getting caught by the flames and avoid debris falling from the collapsing ceiling above them.


Once they were both back on their feet Caleb and Malikhi heard Alex call and responded to let him know they were alright.


Alex felt a huge sense of relief to hear his brother and Caleb were ok, even in spite of the issues between them, he couldn't bare the thought of either of them being seriously hurt or killed.


Alex relayed to Caleb and Malikhi about not being able to contact with three team members that include Chase.


Caleb reached out to each of them psychically, he couldn't get to Terris realizing it was because he was dead, something that he should have been able to sense when it happened.


He had underestimated these people again and now another person had paid for it with their life, and more could die if as he suspected some of Acafra's worshipers might be  coming in.


Inside the crumbling building that for so long had been their hiding place while they regrouped after the defeat he and Baine and Isobel had inflicted on them.


defeat, he had been careless enough to assume had permanently ended the threat they posed, a mistake he could never afford to make again.


Knowing that an attack was imminent Caleb began to search for Andrade, Salla and of course Chase. He was able to focus and he found Chase he was relieved to find that not only was she was still alive, she was in the middle of a fight with 1, 2, no there were 3 of these beasts, he recognized but couldn't remember what they were.


He spent more time than he should in her head just viewing things from her perspective, and he had mixed feelings about how she was handling herself. It disappointed him to see she wasn't putting any planning into what she was doing it was coming from her anger, her need to inflict pain and violence on something that wasn't Human.


Caleb was at least glad to see Chase was dispatching them with relative ease. Still, it struck him that he was sensing from her, he didn't get a sense of the discipline he had worked hard to instill in her all her life. What he was picking up now was a mess of emotions, the obvious feelings of grief over losing Isobel and Baine and a deep sense of anger and the need to get revenge for their deaths.


Then there was her anger and disappointment in him, that shocked him, he knew she'd obviously been unhappy with what he'd done to the boy, he saw that if he'd been paying attention to how she had felt the last time he had been in her mind. He wouldn't have been as shocked and saddened by it, he could have seen she wasn't herself or heard it from Chase personally every time she tried to talk to him. Then he would've known and been able to react differently, maybe even react better.


Still, he wasn't surprised to find that her biggest sense of anger was with herself  that she had at least taken some of his instruction to heart he had worked hard to make sure that she was never complacent and never stopped training and trying to do better.


It angered him to feel that part of her disappointment was over how she had handled the mess she'd made with Alex and Malikhi, she was angry with Mal for leaving, but conflicted about whether she still loved him and now she was angry with Alex over his inaction, but felt guilty that she had never loved him.


He should never have given into Isobel's nonsense about letting her be a young woman he should have clamped down right away when she and Mal started showing romantic feelings towards each other. Maybe he had to let her go experience sex, but he should've just let her use a civilian for that, someone she'd never likely meet again. Who she wouldn't pine for or develop any feelings other than lust for then screw them and move on.


That's what had started her taking her mind off the mission and making her sloppy that had led to him having to do the unthinkable. That thought about what he had done to the boy shook him out of this latest psychic trawl through Chases' mind.


No, that was all down to him and no one else he couldn't blame his daughter, whatever else he was, he knew he wasn't weak and never tried to taint others with the blame if he made a mistake. Which he still wasn't sure that he had done.


He had to finish going through Chase's memories and thoughts, examining all her feelings and her fears Caleb realised he had done it for too long and he had to return to searching for the other two team members.


Their signals were weak, but he found them only to feel them being snuffed out and he realised that he had guessed right, some of Acafra's worshipers were now inside.

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