I was floating. I think. My eyes were closed and I couldn't open them, I couldn't move any part of my body. I just listened. I heard only air.
Am I dead? Death by fatigue...You've gotta be kidding me. I won't die from a little energy overuse.
"No need to worry, you are simply asleep for now, little Night."
I tensed, or at least tried to, when I heard the Voice. This time it wasn't in my head. She was out there. Somewhere.
I tried to open my mouth to speak, but my body was unresponsive, I was completely paralyzed. I strained my ears, trying to locate where I was. I couldn't sense anything. My mind was totally disconnected from the rest of me. It was highly disorientating even though all I could see was blackness.
"Rest, you spent quite a lot of energy to teleport," I heard her soft, maternal tone again. She was closer this time but I still couldn't place her. I wanted to speak out, but I couldn't.
Where am I? I tried thought projections, hoping it would work.
The Voice answered, "Sleeping. This is simply a dream world where your spirit can enter on certain occasions. Your physical body is safe with Lucifer." Her voice sounded almost wistful when she said Lucifer's name, but my worry overshadowed my curiosity.
What about Matt? Is he all right?
She laughed softly and the sound instantly eased my anxiety. Her voice drew closer until it sounded like she was directly above me and I felt a presence on what should have been my forehead. She spoke softly and I could imagine a smile on her blurred face, "The Seer is fine. He is unharmed and watching over you worriedly. You have such loyal and trustworthy friends, little Night."
The presence on my forehead began to move, like a hand brushing the hair away from a sleeping child's eyes. It was incredibly soothing and I could sense my consciousness drifting. I had no desire to fight it even though I had so many questions to ask. It was hypnotic.
I faintly heard her last melodious words, barely a hushed whisper, "...you've become such a beautiful girl. If..." Her words faded away as I drifted.
I was floating again, mind bordering between oblivion and semi-consciousness. I drifted mindlessly for an undetermined length of time before I slowly regained feeling in my limbs. Warmth spread through my fingers and toes, traveling through my nerves, up my arms and legs, to my stomach, chest, jaw, lips, cheeks, ears, my entire body. A swirling sense of heat that I would imagine was gold, or dulled orange.
My ear began to work again, along with my nose. A bitter fragrance filled my nostrils, the smell so strong I could taste whatever horrid concoction it wafted from. I gagged, trying to rid the vile taste of the scented air.
"She's waking up!" a high-pitched voice cheered. It was followed by a stampeded of three pairs of feet huddling around me.
"W-w-water," I croaked, my voice rough and harsh, grating on my own ears. I sounded like a fifty-eight year old, jobless, male chain-smoker.
Instantly, a cool sweet liquid met my lips, I had no idea what it was but chugged it down without complaint. It was a tad bit too sweet, tasting faintly of Dwarf honey and some Fay flora, but it eased my dire thirst. Once I finished drinking the sweet syrup, I coughed to clear my throat and finally opened my eyes.
"Urrg," I groaned, holding my thumping head and tried to sit up. A pair of large, thin hands supported me as I shifted into a seating position on the bed I had been lying in. I realized I was in Lucifer's room, on his bed and there were four other people in the room with me. Four.
"Thank Liseira you're alright, Nyx!" Tigerlily sighed, her voice filled with relief. She fluttered towards my shoulder then flew around my face, circling my body doing her own quick inspection.
"T-Tigerlily?" I stuttered. I then caught sight of a certain Council member's arrogant son. "Daniel?"
The bed sank next to me as Lucifer added his weight. He combed my hair back with his hand and shushed me, "Don't strain yourself, you need to rest. Teleporting four people including yourself is no easy feat. Good job, Nixie."
I didn't bother correcting him and frowned, "But I...I was...how? I couldn't have."
The only person I was touching was Matt. I actually forgot Daniel and Tigerlily were in the room. They were on the opposite side, by the door. No way could I have teleported them.
As soon as the thought finished, Lucifer frowned, "What? That shouldn't be possible."
My eyes widened, "Wait. You heard my thoughts?" I checked my mind and gasped, "My blocks are gone. I can't put them back up." I felt panic bubble up, coming close to overflowing and tried summoning up Slayer. Not even hair color change. I desperately tried to open my 'drawer' but only snatched air. I focused on my core, but nothing. Not even a tiny flicker.
"It's gone," I whispered, dismayed. "My magic...my powers...they're gone."
Lucifer pulled my hands away from my head and placed his palms on each temple, closing his eyes and muttering. I felt nothing. Lucifer's frown deepened and his eyes flickered as he pulled his hands away.
I felt empty. Now that I searched, I felt completely broken and hollow. A huge void was just sitting inside me. I had nothing.
"Maybe you just overused your powers and they're rechargin' or something'," Matt proposed, trying to make me feel better. I smiled at his effort, but it didn't help much. Even if I did overuse them and they were "recharging", I wouldn't feel this empty. Even after creating Scythe, I didn't feel so...desolate or lost.
"Scythe!" I exclaimed, remembering. "What about Scythe?" If I couldn't open my 'drawer' what would happen? Scythe was my baby, I created him and no way was I losing him. Normal people have a blanket or a teddy bear; I have a double bladed scythe.
I wrapped my arms around myself and noticed I was shaking. I was so vulnerable. So weak. So...so helpless.
I could tell I was worrying the others, but at the moment I couldn't care. I was still panicking. I was scaredshitless.
Lucifer wrapped his arms around me protectively, murmuring words of comfort that I couldn't comprehend. I shook in his arms for a bit until my shudders simmered down and I was only breathing short, clipped breaths. "I'm scared, Lucifer," I whispered hoarsely into his chest.
I felt his arms tighten around me and I felt a soft pressure against my forehead as he answered, "Don't worry. We'll figure it out. You're still my little Nyx, okay?"
My little Nyx. My little Night.
"Y-yeah. S-sorry," I shakily replied. I pushed away from Lucifer and took a deep calming breathe and tried a smile, "I just...overreacted a bit. I'm fine. There's more important things to discuss first. I'm okay. Really. I'm fine. I'll be okay."
Lucifer clearly didn't believe me, but he didn't push. Tigerlily just looked at me worriedly while Daniel and Matt seemed too afraid to try and come any closer. I didn't blame them though. Even I have no idea what to do when someone as a mental breakdown. If the situation were reversed, I'd probably be doing what they were doing or I'd make the situation worse by saying something insensitive.
I shoved my personal problems to the back of my mind and focused on the more immediate problem. "Bertham is Draheim, he said so himself. He's also behind Lunaria," I stated.
Lucifer cast one more worried glance at me before putting on his usual façade and tonelessly answered, "I know. While you were out, your friends described what had happened. Do you have the notebook and paper?"
My previous pain and depression flashed across my face for a split second before I answered dutifully, "Yes, but it's in my 'drawer'."
Lucifer tapped his fingers in thought, thinking about how to proceed. He warily looked at me, "Draheim has taken over the school. As soon as you left, he put his plan into action. He's got an army of brainwashed supernaturals, some humans as well. They are all Lunaria users, he must have had an activation spell to control those with Lunaria in their systems. He's grown stronger over the centuries, so much that he's been able to remove the school from its own dimension into the middle of the human realm. The Council has sent their own forces to stop Draheim, but no one has been able to reach him. They are calling for Slayer."
I inhaled deeply and stood up, swaying slightly until I regained my bearings. I flexed my fingers, rolled my shoulders and cracked my neck, "I better get going then. I'll need your help to send me to wherever the bastard is though, Luke."
"What? You can't go! You can barely stand, Nyx!" Matt exclaimed, waving his hands in my direction as I stumbled trying to take a step.
"What use would you be anyway?" Daniel asked skeptically.
Tigerlily flew to his shoulder and kicked his cheek with a huff, "You idiot! Can you be anymore thoughtless?"
I focused on taking another step, this time with minimal faltering that was almost acceptable to my standards, and ignored their bantering. "I'll need some throwing knives, three daggers, two short and one long, and a semi-automatic," I listed to Lucifer. He frowned but said nothing knowing I would get to Draheim with or without his help no matter how impossible it seemed.
"You are not going, Nyx," Matt declared, his voice showing signs of authority and confidence that I hadn't known he possessed.
Lucifer materialized the weapons I asked for and I tucked them in easily accessible places as I answered back, "I am and that's final, boy. I can take care of myself and this is my mission. Stay here and don't get in trouble, I'll be back."
Matt charged towards me and grasped my arm, halting me from tucking the specialized semi-automatic into the waistband of my modified school skirt. I had attached shorts underneath and sliced a line up the skirt to the waistband for easier and more fluid mobility.
I gave him a stony glare and snarled, "Let me go, boy."
I saw a trickle of fear invade his eyes but he puffed his chest out resolutely, "No. Not unless you say you ain't goin'."
"Why the hell do you even care?" I asked, frustrated by his unreasonable persistence. The world was in danger and he was preventing me from doing my job to do something about it.
"Because you're my best friend! N' I don't wanna see you get killed!" he yelled, some of his spit spraying my face.
I kept my expression impassive, almost robotic, and released my arm to wipe his emotion driven spit from my face. When finished, I double-checked that my weapons were in place and quietly, monotonously, without looking at him said, "Then good thing you're staying here."
I caught a quick glimpse of his face, confusion, hurt and disbelief painted it clearly. I ignored it and coldly turned my back to him facing Lucifer. "Send me there, please."
Lucifer let no emotion show on his face, but I caught concern and understanding flash briefly in his opaque eyes as he replied, "Be careful. Try not to kill many of them, they are brainwashed by the drug and Draheim's spell. There are vamps and weres and a few skilled witches and warlocks that are from the Council. Do you want me to recreate the shade?"
I shook my head, "No, there's no time for me to change. When this is over, I don't think it'll matter that my cover's been blown. Everyone will just have to deal with the fact that their Grim Reaper is a little hybrid freak."
I heard two gasps from behind me and turned to see the reason why. Daniel was pointing at me and Tigerlily had her hands covering her mouth.
"You're the Slayer?" Daniel questioned, his voice a pitch higher in disbelief.
My eyebrow rose of its own accord in slightly amused sarcasm, "You just figured that out? You're almost as oblivious as your father, warlock."
Lucifer chuckled, "I don't think anyone can be as ignorant as old Gordy. Except for dear old Eggy. Those two would make a wonderful, miserable couple if they didn't have mates already."
Daniel's face flamed red at the insult but it wasn't like he could do anything. He just fumed silently while Tigerlily teased him and I smiled. Matt was still glaring at me though his forest green eyes held a considerable amount of worry and concern. I had to leave as soon as possible.
"Lucifer," I called, my tone low. He nodded solemnly, the good mood evaporating quickly as he placed his hand on my shoulder.
"I'd go in your place, but you know the rules. I am not allowed to interfere directly with affairs of the mortal world," he sighed. He squeezed my shoulder and I felt the tingles of teleportation. "Don't get yourself killed. I won't have an annoying little brat to look after then."
I smiled crookedly, "You won't get rid of me that easily, Luke."
In mere seconds, the blood red and black room disappeared to be replaced by the front gate of Supernatural School. I took in my surroundings and noted it was slightly chilly, and there was snow from a previous snowfall. There were cop cars surrounding the school and a number of them were stunned to see a schoolgirl materialize right in front of the gates.
"She's one of them!" one of the cops called out fearfully. Instantly, I had a couple dozen standard .40 cal police guns aimed at me in shaky grips. Even though my magic was gone, my sharp eyes zeroed out the supernaturals in the squad. They were the ones who looked at me with either recognition as Lucifer's servant or as one of them since I had the School's uniform on.
I raised my hands over my heads to look harmless and shouted over the blaring sirens, directing my message to the supernaturals in the area, "My Master sent me. Let me through the gates."
The human police were confused, but the supernaturals who recognized me understood. One of them, a burly blond who I would peg as a were of some sort, lowered his gun and ordered the others to do so as well. They complied uneasily and he walked up to me as I slowly lowered my arms.
"We asked for Slayer, not his hybrid servant," the might-be-were stated disdainfully, a British accent slightly audible. I must be in somewhere in Great Britain. At least it's not as cliché and Hollywood-esque as New York.
I held back a glare and answered tonelessly, "My Master ordered me. Let me through the gates."
He narrowed his eyes at me, "That bastard sends his slave instead of his killer. I bet he's teamed up with Draheim just to see the destruction of everything."
I growled and pulled out the long dagger I had tucked into a hole I made in my shorts. With my free hand I clutched the officer's collar and pulled him down with the dagger's blade lightly touching he hollow of his throat. I had guns aimed at me once again but I ignored them and hissed, "Never, insult Lucifer in my presence. Now let me through the damn gate without a couple dozen bullets making Swiss cheese out of me, Blondie. We're losing time."
The man was frozen for a few dragged out seconds and I almost thought I would have to spill a little blood to get my threat across. Luckily he backed off and reordered the weapons to be pointed elsewhere. He rubbed his throat, no doubt still feeling the ghost of my dagger and grudgingly stated, "Alright. Don't expect anyone to save you inside though, hybrid."
I tucked the dagger away and turned my back to the police. With a deep breath, I opened the school gates and took a step inside. I felt my body pass a liquid-y, plasma kind of wall and instead of entering the front courtyard of the school, I ended up in the cafeteria.
He's messed with the spaces in the school. Completely distorting the dimension and bringing it to the human world...No. Stop thinking negatively, Nyx. You are going to go back. No way am I dying here, not yet.
I took out the two short daggers, holding them cautiously and keeping alert. The cafeteria was completely empty. No signs of any sort of being, living or not. The air had a strange tint that smelt strangely familiar. I knew it from somewhere. It was some sort of herb or plant mixed with smoke.
"No time, I gotta find Draheim," I muttered to myself. Warily and stealthily, I slinked across the cafeteria to the door. I put my ear against it, listening for movement but heard nothing. Carefully, I nudged the door open and peeked through the crack I made. It was just the regular hallway.
I frowned and closed the door again, searching for a small object. Seeing none, I picked up one of the plastic chairs and dragged it to the doors. With a quick shove, I opened the door and threw the chair inside. Like I expected, the chair vanished, leaving only a faint rippling as the only sign of a magically adjusted border.
Looks like I'm going to have to blindly jump around and hope I get lucky. There's gotta be some sort of pattern.
Realizing I was losing precious minutes, I tightened my hold on the daggers and ran through the door only to narrowly avoid crashing into a tiled wall and the chair I had thrown in beforehand. After seeing the urinals I realized the cafeteria was connected to one of the boys' bathroom. I let out a frustrated grunt and marched to the exit, pulling the door open only to be tackled to the floor.
"DIE!" my attacker screeched. "If I kill you, I get more! Hehehe...die!"
I dropped my daggers to restrain my attacker's wrists and prevent her clawed hands from ripping the skin off my face. She was a semi-shifted were-hawk, her gold eyes wild with a frenzied craze.
We rolled on the cold floor until I found an opening and kicked her stomach, effectively tossing her off of me. Quickly, I snatched up the closest of my fallen daggers and just barely managed to parry her talons with the blade.
"C'mon hawk, you can fight it," I grunted out through clenched teeth. The girl was just brainwashed. There was still a were-hawk with a conscience in there somewhere. Hopefully.
She either couldn't understand me or chose to ignore my words. She just continued to push her claws against the dagger and tried to land a blow on me. She kept chanting to herself, "More. He will give me more. I just need to kill you. Kill. More. I need more."
She was slowly pushing me back against the wall I had almost crashed into upon entering the bathroom and what I wouldn't have done to have Scythe in my hands. My eyes caught a urinal we were slowly passing and I took a chance to duck, her talons falling down over my shoulders as I grabbed her waist and smashed her into the porcelain.
She shrieked in pain but it didn't stop her from pushing off and attacking me again. I managed to block off one of her clawed hands but the result was the dagger being knocked out of my grip and clattering to the floor. She nicked my cheek, drawing three lines of scarlet.
I ignored the sharp sting and wrestled her to the ground, trying to pin her hands above her head and pinning her legs with my lower body. "Stop...fucking...dammit..." I gritted my teeth, forcing her down. I needed to knock her out somehow. Bashing her head against the floor was a bit too barbaric for me and I might end up killing her.
My problem was resolved though when I sensed the air shift and the were-hawk stilled under me. Momentarily confused, I quickly became alert and jumped off of her, aiming a kick at the newcomers.
I froze right before my foot made contact and lowered my stance in disbelief. "What are you three doing here?" I asked, my voice a little breathless from the scuffle.
Daniel smirked and dusted off invisible flakes from his shoulder, "Even if you are the Slayer, you'll be needing some help. Even Lord Lucifer agreed and sent us after you."
I groaned, but didn't respond. They were stuck with me now since they couldn't go back out the way they came. I turned my back to them and crouched down to check the were-hawk. Her pulse was beating very faintly, but beating nonetheless. The air change... Daniel must have altered the air around her to make her breathe in a lower amount of oxygen causing her to pass out. Hate to admit it but that's pretty smart.
I picked up my daggers once again and turned back to my new teammates. Sternly, I ordered, "Okay, I'm stuck with you now so listen up. When I say run, you fucking run. When I say stay, you sit your ass down. Don't try to be a hero and go off on your own. Your main priority is to stay alive. They are drugged and under some sort of magic mind control and will not hesitate to kill you. Knock them out or hinder them but your life comes before anything else. Do you have some sort of weapon or method to protect yourselves?"
"Fire and air magic. I can do what I did to the were-creature to three at a time," Daniel responded promptly with a touch of smugness.
"I can create minor illusions to a small group or a stronger one on an individual. I'm also really fast and small so it'll be harder for me to be spotted or attacked," Tigerlily supplied.
When I faced Matt, he squirmed, not being able to come up with an answer. I sighed and rolled my eyes but smiled slightly. I flicked one of my short daggers so the handle faced Matt and I waited for him to cautiously take it.
"Matt, stay close to either me or Daniel. Only use the blade when absolutely necessary. Trust your instincts and you'll be fine," I smiled encouragingly. Matt looked at the blade and swallowed but nodded resolutely. His fear was still evident, but I had to admire his persistence and courage. Such a strange human. There really should be more like him, supernaturals too.
I took out the long dagger and twirled it in my right hand, getting used to the feel and weight before marching to the exit of the bathroom.
"Now follow me and don't get yourself killed."
I heard them follow and we stepped through the door into the next area of the distorted school.
Draheim, I'm coming for you.