The Unseen Devil

Dealing with Death. Many people believe it's impossible, but Xanthe knows it isn't. But there's a catch. She is bound to serve the Devil and his helpers for all eternity. She is defeated. Stuck like to glue to a life she hates. At least, this is what she thinks...

Book 2 in the Chalson Chronicles. All rights reserved. Cover designed by TheFuzz

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4. Moonlight Goose

It was quite easy getting in to Floek. Easier than I remember, easier than it should be. I was permanently on edge, having to take to the alleys to cover it. Alessio followed on sullenly, refusing to even look at me. I was kind of glad for the silence. This place brings back too many painful memories to make conversation easy. Memories of happier times, times now long gone. The town was alive today, horses pulling carts of exotic fruits filling up the streets. There was no shortage of soldiers as well, mingling with the hordes of traders & townsfolk, looking out for people like me. Magic and anyone with magical powers are outlawed. The penalty for being one of them or associating with one is severe. Death, in fact. The cold sunlight covered Floek with its icy yet warm glare, colouring the tightly packed buildings grey underneath the masses of ivy. Whispering of the Eden river floated to me as we neared our destination.

"What are we doing here?" Alessio questioned as I turned to enter a dark and dingy pub, only one of many in the slums of the town.

"You'll see," I said shortly, pushing open the door to the Moonlight Goose. Warmth rushed out and the smell of beer engulfed us as we entered. The place was packed, jolly, drunken laughter not failing to lift my spirits. Roughly pushing my way through the crowd I reached the bar and sat myself down on the only free barstool.


"Hey darling, what can I... Well, well Xanthe. What are you doing in me pub love? On a school night as well!" Raven, the barmaid behind the bar, slurred. She was one of my oldest friends. If she wouldn't help me, no one would.

"Why do you ask questions you already know the answer to?" I replied, fending off the prying hands of drunk sailors. Raising her eyebrows, the bar door was opened to allow us through. Raven's voluminous skirts, that did not hid the fact that she had grown to be quite plump after too many years of cheap food and beer, swished noisily as she unlocked the beer cellar and ushered us down. The whole place sunk like stale beer and the damp, the only coming from a small window half covered by river water. I could of sworn I saw a rat.

"Lovely," Alessio murmured, low enough for only me to hear. I could of murdered him.

"What have you done now Xanthe?" Raven sighed, sinking on to a old barrel of beer. Before I could stop myself, the whole story came pouring out. Minus the bits that Alessio wanted to know of course.

"Love, you're in a heap of trouble. Bringing in a Mortal as well? This is worse than the time you set fire to the Witch's house, love," She tutted once I'd finished. I smiled despite myself and Alessio's look of alarm nearly made me burst in to laughter. It's true though. I'm up to my neck in trouble.

"Can you help me?" I asked, wishing like mad that she could.

"What about me?" Spoke up Alessio, throwing me a questioning look.

"Once we're done here, you're going straight home and forgetting all this," I said decisively. There's no way he's coming with me. No on this planet.

"Remember what I said earlier?" He challenged. I nodded in response, "Well, that means I'm coming with you. So I think you mean us." I started to protest, but Raven silenced me with a simple click of her fingers.

"I can help you both. There's a boat outside that's heading to Benlat tonight. I believe you know the captain Xanthe. That's the best I can do for you," Her voice echoed around the cellar, masking the pounding of my stupid heart. Neither of us were exactly happy about the idea, but it was the only one we had right now.

"Take us there," I said.

*****************

Mould. That's what it smelt like. Nothing but mould

"You've got to be kidding me," I spluttered. A mouldy fishing boat no bigger than my old tree home. That's our saviour. All of the black clad men on deck turned to stare at me. It's bad luck luck to have a woman on board a ship. Even a mini women on a mini ship.

"Quit yer staring men. Get back to yer work," boomed a voice. It's owner was no less impressive. His black coat billowed out in the wind like a sail, putting me to shame yet again with his crisp look. A ruby eye reflected my ash covered face as he regarded me, the cat perched on his shoulder so red that I thought he was bleeding to death. The infamous Captain Riah. One of my few allies in this world of lies and hate.

"I hope you don't mind a couple of extra people, Captain," I remarked. Seeing his cat was only making me want my own familiar, she could of scared the blood cat to death.

"Of course I do," Riah immediately replied,"Yet that was more of a telling than a questioning I believe Xanthe." The man knows me far too well.

"I see you still have your bloody cat. He's extremely lucky Midnight isn't here."

"Don't be so sure."

 As if on cue, a loud growl erupted through the air. One all to familiar to me. Everyone on the boat whipped round, only to come face to face with my familiar. She buried her coal black head in to my stomach, causing me to giggle despite it all. My jaguar could always make me smile. Out of the corner of my eye, I could just see Alessio backing away slightly. Wimp.

Go over to that boy moving away Midnight. Have some fun with him.

Can I scare him?

Yes, yes you can.

Hehehe.

She padded gently over to him, head lowered in a snarl. I could of sworn I heard the boy whimper. Alessio was rooted to the spot as my pet reached him, eyes wide with fear. A small growl emerged from her throat, everyone's eyes trained on her. Midnight stretched over her paw, claws slowly dragging across his arm; Blood leaked out of the three cuts, staining his skin red. Gripping his wound, he glanced at me with a look spitting mistrust & confusion.

"Let me make this very clear to you. If you dare even think about turning us over to Opeh, that mark will betray you. You're now down as one of us. So if we go, you go," I smirked at him. Who said I had to play fair? No one. Midnight returned to me, her black eyes asking me questions.

How did I do?

Perfectly. Well done.

Thank you.

"Welcome to the Magic World Mr Alessio. I'll show you two to your cabins," Riah butted in. My eyes were still locked against Alessio's as we walked in to our cabins.

Like I said, magic has its uses.

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