Skyward: Gabriel's Return

After Hailee and Zander find themselves in Gabriel's grasp. They know he is much stronger than they imagined. Forgetting themselves, who they are and what they ever knew, how will Trevor and the others get them back? And how can they fight Gabriel? Find out in the second book of Skyward. Copyright © 2013 Hailee Reynolds.

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22. Are You Scared Of Me?

When Hailee woke up it was early. Her alarm hadn't gone off yet but she didn't want to go back to sleep. She turned off her alarm and slid out off bed. She went over to her closet where she decided to wear a loose black shirt and dark jeans with a brown belt. She wore her signature boots and she brushed through her hair before leaving her room.

She could smell breakfast out in the mess hall or kitchen as they called it. When she got out there only a few people had woken up. She grabbed some toast and milk before heading over to her own table alone to eat. She wasn't alone for long as a girl hopped up next to her. Tyler was there too. Shirtless and lounging out on a couch 

"Why are you up so early, sister?" She asked her with a grin.

"I have to go to train the fire clan today." Hailee answered the girl. There was laughter from across the room from a man.

"They are a lost cause. Too full of themselves and their pride to be taught anything useful." He commented. The girl next to Hailee snorted and laughed.

"Exactly." 

"Well, that's why I'm going to train them. To show them how to be real fighters." Hailee told them. 

"Good luck with that by the way, sister." The man told her as she nodded and left her plate, walking out to the door and leaving.

The air was cool and it made her skin get the goose bumps. She knew fall was in full effect now as the leaves started to change. Their was the smell of fires burning not only from her own clan but from the fire clan too. She took off and it wasn't long before she was at the door to the fire temple. She decided it was time to get it over with as she entered the door and people turned to look at her.

She had changed she knew and the power she was radiating was new to all of them here. Hailee gave off a new sense of authority and some whispered the words "monster" or "she was turned". "One of them now" was also whispered. She ignored them and continued walking up the stairs to Gabriel's room. Once she got there she knocked. There was no response.

Hailee decided that he was sleeping so she pushed open the door and walked in. His bed was empty though.

"Gabriel?" She called out to him.

"Rawr!!" He yelled and appeared from behind the door and wrapped himself around her. She was totally caught off guard though as she hissed and threw him off her towards the ground. She was on him now, kneeing him in the chest and a knife pulled to his throat. "Hailee!" He yelled and she came back, putting the knife away and getting off him.

"Sorry. You should know better then to scare me like that!" She yelled. He was laughing now as he got up and brushed himself off. Wrapping her tightly in a hug.

"Sorry, I missed you." He said into her ear. In the past it might have made her shudder but she stood still. "Do you not like me anymore?" Gabriel asked her.

"N-no it's not that." Hailee said. A knock came to the door and Victoria entered.

"Oh, uh, sorry if I interrupted anything." Victoria said nervously. Hailee shook her head.

"No, are you ready for training?" Hailee asked her and Victoria nodded.

"Hailee-" Gabriel started. Hailee gave him a hug and a quick kiss. He smiled at her and winked.

"Later." She said to him and left with Victoria. 

"The group is already out at the field so we just have to walk out there." Victoria said.

"Alright." Hailee responded and didn't say anything more. She didn't think she should have to, Victoria was just there to watch over her and her training. When they got down there the kids turned to look at them. Some gasped but others laughed and talked in their groups. They looked bored and untrained. Tyler would have disciplined her fiercely for this sort of slacking.

"Pathetic." Hailee muttered. 

"They haven't been trained yet so my apologies if they aren't at your liking." Victoria said.

"They should learn to be respectful when their leader is present." She whistled loudly and they all looked up at her. 

"We start training today, act like you're prepared." Hailee told them. One of the teenagers spoke up.

'Why should we take orders from you?" They sassed. Hailee was almost hoping to hear that, to have resistance. She smiled and walked over to them. The one who said it was a blonde tall girl who turned her nose at the sight of Hailee. 

¨Very good question. Why should you take orders from a girl you don't know. Well lets make a deal." Hailee smiled slyly.

¨Whatever." The girl rolled her eyes. 

¨We can see who leads like wolves do. The omega, that's you, challenges me, the alpha." Hailee proposed. The girl looked conflicted. The crowed started to form a circle and cheer.

"I-I" She started, "I will challenge you and I will. You talk a big game just because you're a goddess." The girl seemed to sneer. Hailee only smirked and grabbed the girl, dragging her to the middle of the circle.

"Alright no rules. If you win I will stop training and bossing you around." Hailee told her. Victoria gave her an uneasy look. "But if I win you have to listen to me and respect me. You won't try to get out of being trained." Hailee finished. The girl nodded.

"Now, do you have a weapon?" Hailee asked.

"No." The girl replied. Someone from the crowd tossed her a sword.

"Now you do, I will be polite and give you the first move." Hailee drew her sword from its hilt and it seemed to vibrate to life as her hand fit perfectly around the hilt. The sword was all too familiar to her. It glowed a faint blue as the girl charged at her. Hailee blocked her with ease, moving to the side and hitting her sword. The girl was fast but Hailee was faster. 

Hailee took a swing now, knowing that the girl was completely exposed. She didn't want to end the fight just yet though. Hailee lashed out, cutting the girl's side just slightly. She shrieked and her eyes glowed red. Hailee say that she was one of the dragon-kin. 

"I was expecting a better fight then this." Hailee teased. The girl roared in a rage and swung at her. Their swords met and a loud clang sounded through the field. They went back and forth, swords meeting each other and then breaking apart. The girl was getting tired as Hailee swung and the girl was too tired to put muscle behind her swing. The sword was tossed from her hands, tumbling to the ground. Hailee put her sword away quickly.

The girl wasn't done though, claws grew from her fingers and mangled dragon teeth poked out of her mouth. She threw herself at Hailee and started slashing at her. This is what Hailee had trained for though, as she grabbed the girls arm and twisted. There was a sickening pop and the girl howled.  Hailee grabbed her neck and got out from under the girl. Hailee pushed the girl down to her knees and Hailee's veins coursed black. Her fire combined with the darkness in her and engulfed the girl. 

Hailee knew what she was doing and she knew it wouldn't kill her. Shadows appeared from the flame and took shape as the girls fears. The girl began to weep and beg for Hailee to let her go. Hailee seemed deaf to her cries though. 

"Hailee that's enough." Victoria told her, Hailee ignored her.

"Hailee, stop!" Victoria shouted. Hailee growled and snapped her fingers. The fire ceased and the girl laid there huddled.

"The fight is over, the lack of skill you have is pitiful. A dragon-kin like yourself should at least give me a better fight without any training at all. Instead I got a dragon-kin acting like they were a drunken human looking to pick a fight." Hailee spat, circling the girl. 

"Tomorrows training will be the hardest you've ever seen it. You will wish you were dead once I'm done with you." Hailee told all of them.

'Now, grab someone to work with. Practice basic sparring, I will help you if I see that you are doing it wrong." Hailee commanded. Everyone was quiet as they silently found partners and began sparring. 

"What was that?" Victoria practically fumed with rage.

"What?" Hailee asked confused.

"You assaulted that girl to get your point across!" Victoria was close to shouting.

"She needed to learn her place. You asked me to train and this is how I do it." Hailee growled at Victoria. 

"Well next time 'prove your point' with a less violence." Victoria stormed off into the group and began to show them how to train. Hailee rolled her eyes. Of course she didn't understand. She wasn’t trained right either. She watched the group train and sighed at how little any of them know. She walked over to a few and showed them the proper way to hit their opponent. They seemed to correct themselves instantly.

The girl that had previously challenged Hailee had also found a partner and was training hard. She could see the girl was tearing up a little. Hailee didn't comfort her, she knew the girl knew better now. Hailee was going to move to the next drill when she saw a familiar face. The girl that had followed her in the dark woods was sitting alone. Not practicing with anyone. Hailee decided to walk over to her. 

"Why are you sitting alone?" Hailee asked the girl.

"Because I have no partner." Kristal responded simply. 

"Well I can see that, but I asked you to practice." Hailee told her. The girl shrugged. 

'When no one picks you and there are an odd number of people then someone gets left out." Kristal told her. Hailee felt a little bad for the girl.

"Stand up, I will be your partner." Hailee said as Kristal got up.

"You won't beat me like you did to Cleo, right?" Kristal asked. That hurt Hailee a little she admitted to herself. 

"No, I won't hurt you." Hailee promised. And she wouldn't. Kristal nodded and Hailee noted that she was a bit taller then the rest of the members. Hailee figured if she wasn't a goddess she would have been shorter then the girl. Kristal began to practice and tried to get around Hailee's blocks.

"What happened to you? You disappeared for a month and everyone thought you ran off." Kristal told Hailee.

"I was training with the darkness clan." Hailee responded. 

"That's why then." Kristal noted. 

"Why what?" Hailee questioned. 

"You seemed different the moment I saw you walk out onto the field. You radiate more raw power too." She noted again.

"It's not raw power it's my element." Hailee corrected her.

"Is it though? Elements are something the god or goddess have control of. Right now it seems that the darkness is more in control of you then you are of it.." Kristal raised an eyebrow at her. Anger grew inside of Hailee and she wanted to jump on the girl. She stopped herself though. "See? even now the darkness inside you wants to shut me up." Kristal told her.

"I apologize Kristal." Hailee frowned. It was true that Tyler had yet to show Hailee how to control her powers better. That was next though on her training with him. Darkness was a had power to control and that's why they had such aggressive training. Tyler wouldn't let his people get turned into crazed murderers because of their power. 

'It's not your fault, it's whats inside you. You need to learn to control it or if you can banish it." Kristal finished. Hailee growled as the darkness inside her was growing uneasy. 

"I don't want to banish it." Hailee growled. Kristal nodded at her.

"Then learn to control it, I know you can."  Kristal said. "Come with me after practice, I won't have you going back to that wicked place as soon as training is over." 

"I have to report back to Tyler at night." Hailee recited. 

"Well then stay till 12. It's not technically night until then." Kristal winked. Hailee knew this was wrong but at the same time she wanted to see what Kristal was planning on showing her. She forced herself to nod, she would have to deal with Tyler later.

"Fine, but I will leave before twelve." Hailee told her. Kristal smiled.

The rest of practice went as scheduled. She had wooden swords and poles that they used to help with weapons training. They ran the entire field which was 4 miles and then she dismissed them for lunch. When they came back she finished training with survival tactics and different means to stay alive. That took them to almost sun down.

The group was no doubt out of shape, but not hopeless. She dismissed the group when it was time for dinner. Kristal approached her now, but a group of people followed her.

"Ready to go?" Kristal asked Hailee. Someone spoke up behind her.

"We aren't actually bringing her with us are we? I son't want to get shanked." Kristal laughed.

"No Jeremy she won't stab you. She's my friend." Kristal said.

"Quite a big friend if you ask me." A girl said stepping in front of Kristal. She looked like she was almost nineteen and she was far shorter then Hailee or Kristal. "What did your mother feed you growing up? I want some." The girl laughed. 

"Mother?" Hailee questioned, confused. 

"Yeah, a mother, the person that raised you and brought you into this world." The girl smirked. All that came to mind was the volcano that she was created from. Which, didn't sound right.

"I don't think I have a, what you call mother. Unless you mean the volcano I was created from." She told them. The girl laughed.
"I guess the volcano can be your mother then. Most of us don't have mothers either so it's cool." The girl said. Hailee was bewildered, they weren't gods or goddesses.

"Were you also born from the planet then?" Hailee questioned. The girl snorted.

"Something like that." 

 

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