Dawnfire

The year is 1885, and New York is about to get a serious shock in the form of Magnus Bane. Coming straight from London, he makes a dramatic first impression - but as he settles in, he discovers a secret about the High Warlock of Brooklyn - a secret haunting him from his past. One of my entries for the Battle of the Fandoms.
Cover by ATarnishedSoul

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3. A Spectacular Moving Party

In the twenty four hours Magnus had been in the apartment, he had managed to turn it from the dusty, barren rooms, to a bright, airy space filled with jazz. And then there was Church. He still hadn't forgiven Magnus for getting him wet, and was in a foul mood. Whenever anyone approached him, he would hiss and spit, be they werewolf, warlock, fae or vampire.

 

"This is a beautiful view," commented one of the guests. "It's odd, but it reminds me of my view of Central park."

"Yes," replied Magnus. "That would be because I took it." The guest was extremely confused.

"You took my view?"

"No, no, no!" exclaimed Magnus, "That would be ridiculous. I took your window, and the view came with it."

 

Leaving the befuddled guest to mourn his forever lost window, Magnus glided gracefully around, making sure that everyone was having a good time. And managing to drink copius amounts of alcohol whilst doing so. Halfway through the night, when several people had left, one guest approached Magnus.

"Magnus? There appears to be moaning coming from your bathroom."

"Ah yes, I was wondering where he was. There appears to be an ex-resident who inhabits my bathroom. Only once every twenty four hours, you understand."

"An ex-resident?"

"Yes. Called David. Probably. Don't worry, there's a pentacle in the other room, and if you just go straight into that it'll dispense it into seven different dimensions. Just don't fall in."

 

 

Tyre stood from his stool, his sharp, three piece suit cutting an impressive figure.

"Impressive, Magnus," He boomed, "Only two days in New York and already throwing parties."

“Ah, Magnus.” This was Adair, a warlock who had decided to show him around the ins and outs of New York’s downworlder politics. So far it had been a hilarious, if futile attempt. “This Edward Tyre, a respected Downworlder and High Warlock of Brooklyn. Suddenly Magnus gained interest.

“High Warlock? Please explain, I’m afraid I am uneducated in the politics of downworlders.”

“It’s an honourary title, mainly, but it means I have something to wave in the face of any Nephilim who walk in my direction.”

“Since we’re on the subject,” Magnus hesitated here for a moment, not because he was unsure, but because if you sounded unsure people were more likely to talk to you. “Whereabouts would they be, the Nephilim? Where is the New York Institute?”

“It’s based on York Avenue, I believe,” butted in Adair, conscious that he was being cut out of the conversation, and not particularly happy about it. “It’s right opposite…” Magnus zoned out. He had no real interest in the Institute, but he wanted a chance to inspect Tyre.

 

He wore clean, expensive clothes that exuded confidence, his black hair was slicked back and a something about the way he stood told Magnus he held more than an honourary title. He had some serious power, and he was prepared to use it. On the other hand, he held a cane in his right hand, and though it was obviously meant to be decorational, he gripped it too tightly for that. He pressed down on it too hard, with a slight limp in his left leg. He needed the cane. But a man of his confidence would surely use a real cane, and dare anyone to confront him about it. Unless it had happened recently. Unless it was only temporary. But what could have happened so recently that he couldn’t have gotten a real cane? That wasn’t it. It must have been something else. Something he didn’t want people to know about.

 

Or, Magnus tried to persuade himself, he had simply walked into something. He had sworn that he wouldn’t get involved with these things any more. He excused himself politely from the conversation, leaving Tyre to listen to Adair’s explanation of exactly why the bagels from the patisserie across from the Institute were terrible, and why it was the Nephilim’s fault. He continued as he had, making sure each and every guest felt welcome, until each and every one had left. The last guest left at about one in the morning, and as soon as they did so Magnus passed out on a sofa, sleeping to the sound of David’s moans.

 

Seven hours later, Magnus awoke. Head spinning, he looked around; he was in a stone room, with four blank walls. He was chained to a chair in the middle of the room, the padlock was digging into his back. He tried to look down, but a fine chain of fire held his neck. Behind him a steel door slid open, and footsteps echoed into the room.

“So, Magnus Bane.” The voice sounded familiar, but Magnus couldn’t place it. His hangover was making his head buzz, which meant it was very hard to concentrate. “Someone wants to see you, Magnus.” Whoever had entered the room was keeping out of sight, staying on the very edge of Magnus’ peripheral vision. It was a technique used by interrogators, and it was driving Magnus crazy.

 

Suddenly the chain holding his neck in place was removed, and Edward Tyre stepped into view.

“How can you do that?” asked Magnus. “Those chains are of the Nephilim.”

“Oh Magnus. You should know by now that there’s nothing they can do we can’t do better.”

“What on earth are you doing Tyre? If I die, people will come looking. You ever heard of Tessa Gray? Camille Belcourt? The Herondales? If I die, none of them will be happy.” Tyre laughed, a horrible, mocking laugh.

“Oh, you aren’t going to die. Magnus, look down.”  Dread filled Magnus, and slowly he looked at the steel floor. A pentacle was drawn on the floor, with Magnus in the very centre; it was missing one line. Tyre drew out a stick of chalk, and started drawing the last line, speaking as he did so.

“You know, it’s almost a shame that I have to do this. I actually started to like you at the party last night. Then again, the almost limitless power and personal army more than makes up for it. Goodbye Magnus, your father would like a word.” He flicked the chalk once more, and Magnus fell through into another dimension, still chained to the chair.

 

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