As we neared the house, from within the darkness of night I saw it. Like a beacon in a storm, the building was aflame. The blaze reached high into the sky. Like a demon looming above its fallen prey.
The world around me blurred as I dashed through the open field and towards the roaring flame. The faces of my brothers and sisters flashed in my mind and with them came a wave of electricity. My entire body tingled and moved with a singular goal.
Beside me, Colt ran a desperate sprint. Neither of us had to say it but we both knew. Screw the money, the only thing that mattered was saving our family.
"Iris!" Colt shouted, his voice instantly drowned out by the crackle of the blaze.
The moment we stepped within earshot I stopped in my tracks. Before, everything had been blocked out by the smoke. But now we were finally close enough. Close enough to smell the bite of the flames. Close enough to hear the screams of the other kids. And close enough to see the scum who caused it.
Even amidst the growing mass of flames and smoke I could see him. The same boy from the farm, standing across from Iris. The bodies of eight kids strung out along the ground around them.
"It hurts auntie, it hurts!" Cried Amy, blood pouring from a slash to her back.
I'll kill him.
That one thought filled my head as I listened to my little brothers and sisters cry in pain. Lightning arced off my body and thunder echoed through the smoke-filled sky as if their cries were dragging out the magic from within me.
"Where is the abnormal," the boy said, not a hint of care in his voice or on his face.
"I don't know what you're talking about!" Yelled Iris. "And even if I did there's no way in hell I'd tell you," she spat through grit teeth.
"Where are they, you wench! I know that thick blooded scum is here!" The boy yelled, the earth around us shaking as if in fear.
"Aun-" My cry cut off as soon as it escapes my lips, Colt keeping one hand clasped over my mouth.
"They're here for you. We need to go," He whispered before picking me up and running back towards the farm.
Lightning jolted through his body every second he touched me yet even amidst my violent thrashing, his grip held strong. Then I heard a sniffle. He was crying. Tears poured down his face and he looked so angry it sent a chill down my spine.
"Please," He muttered.
"Not so fast!" The boy roared, slamming his fists down into the ground. "You must be the abnormal that's been reported!"
tremor after tremor pulsed through the ground around us as we ran. Soon enough, the tremors grew into massive quakes, throwing Colt and me to the ground.
"Die like the vermin you are!" The boy shouted, tearing his fists up from the dirt. With his fists came a torrent of sand, rushing across the field towards us.
"Let's go!" Colt said, grabbing my hand and tugging me back to my feet. "Iris can't fight if she is having to protect us."
He was right. Neither of us knew how to use our magic past the scope of hunting. And if I tried to use my magic it would probably just go out of my control.
"It's catching up!" I shouted.
The flood of sand seemed endless. In less than a minute it had crossed the field and gotten just feet behind us. Then, right as the sand was about to reach us, the night sky grew bright as day. In a flash of light, a massive golden cross shot through the sand, halting its advance in an instant.
"You're late Vi!" yelled Iris. Flames lighting on her left hand as she grabbed Amy with the other and threw the child at the new man. "Get going I can't protect them while I fight."
"Yeah Yeah, whatever you old witch," Vi said, scooping the three of us into his arms.
"You can't just leave her!" I cried, pushing against his grasp, lightning once again sparking from my body.
"She can take care of herself," He said. "Good luck Iris," calling back to her one last time.
"Get out of here!" She roared back. Flames now dancing all around her.
Beneath her now torched clothes she bore a strange crest. The crest of the black knights.
The last thing I saw was Auntie slashing her hands forward like claws and the flames all along the terrain spiraling around the hunter. Yet from within this twister from hell came a flash of bronze, and from beneath Iris came a volley of earthen spikes. Ash pilling along her feet as the ground burns away, her own skin begins to boil as she holds the hunter back so the children can escape.
"I believe in you," she smiled as her own flames consumed her.
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