As soon as Daecon said this the violet glow returned brighter than ever, and now the blue-white streaks of energy that surrounded Daecon's hand resembled lightning. This energy began emanating from Daecon’s eyes, nose, mouth, and ears, and suddenly both he and Evander were completely enveloped in a ball of lightning and lifted off the ground. The hair on Lucinda head was standing up and being pulled toward the energy.
“Get back!”, Lucinda screamed to Leander as the energy became
more intense. It was as though a thousand arc welders were operating at once,
with a loud crackling buzz and blinding light. “Do not let it touch you!”
"What's happening?!?" Leander asked.
"I do not know", Lucinda answered. "This magic is new to me, something more powerful than I've ever experienced. By all rights, as soon as your son's spirit left his body this should have been over. Bringing one back from the world of the dead is impossible, I don't know what Daecon is doing now."
This was the last thing Daecon heard before the world went dark and silent. The glowing and energy were both gone, as was the whole world around him. He was suspended in some kind of Astral Plane. There was no light yet there was also no darkness; no sky above and no ground below. He simply existed, floating in nothingness. He looked around and wondered where he was.
Without even realizing how, he became aware of a small bright light moving off in the distance, and somehow he knew what it was.
“Evander”, he called out. The light stopped moving.
“Evander, I’ve come for you”, he said. The light slowly started moving toward him. As it got closer to him he could see that the light was a bundle of frantic bright yellow and orange sparks about the size of a soccer ball. It hovered before him as if it was regarding him.
“You need to come back with me”, Daecon said to the ball of sparks. “Your father needs you.”
For what seemed to be an eternity the ball of sparks did not move. It appeared that it did not understand him. Daecon stared at it with a deep sadness. Eventually it started moving away again.
“Evander, please!”, Daecon pleaded. “I need you to come back! I have taken care of the wolf and repaired your body. Your fathers need you. I…. I need you! Please come back with me, Evander!”
The ball stopped again, then returned to its position in front of Daecon.
The word was not spoken out loud and yet Daecon clearly heard it. It was as though it came from within his head.
“I don’t know. I… it’s just that… I know we only just met, but from the moment I laid eyes on you I felt that we were fated to be together. I had never felt attraction to anyone before like I felt when I first saw you. I know you didn’t care for me at first, but I knew that given the chance I could overcome that. And I think I sort of did, didn’t I? I know there was something significant between us when we were flying and playing games earlier. I could feel it, and I’m pretty sure that I could see it in your eyes.”
The ball continued to hover in front of him, the sparks within it looking a little less frantic and starting to shift to a warmer orange colour.
Again, the words sounded like they were originating in his
“I don’t understand. What do you mean, you cared?”
From the moment I first saw you flying across that lake I
cared. I could feel that something great was going to happen, but when you
landed I sensed that you were several stations above me. I did not want to give
you the opportunity to reject and disappoint me, so I acted badly toward you in
an attempt to make you think that I was not interested in you.
Daecon couldn’t help but laugh. “You’re really saying that
you were being a dick just to play hard to get?”
No. I was merely trying to fend off rejection. I am not popular among my kind and have seen much rejection in my past. I wanted to be the one doing the rejecting for once.
“I find it hard to believe that you wouldn’t be popular.
You’re the sexiest guy that I’ve ever seen! And I've seen a lot of guys!”
"I did not always look as I did when you met me. I was a very awkward child. I was scrawny, covered in freckles, and wore braces on my teeth. Shapeshifter children are not too different from human children in that they look for weaknesses in others and bully when they find it. In fact it may even be worse, because we are animal at heart and as animals we punish weakness. Add my looks to the political activities of my fathers and I was picked on continuously. Owen and Leander purchased that cottage to get me away from those other children, but I still had to go to school, so I still suffered. It took a lot of work to overcome my childhood looks, but I've never been able to shed the ostracization that I suffered and continue to do so."
"Political activities?" Daecon asked. "I thought your fathers were well respected among Shapeshifters."
Originally they were, but as time passed and their efforts to pin the crime of Darion's murder on the council turned up no evidence they began to be looked upon as troublemakers. The others started looking down on them as a fringe group of dissidents, and the children of those others were merciless. I heard things that my fathers are not aware of, things regarding their reputations in the colonies. Worst of all, I just discovered that the others were right; my fathers were chasing ghosts that didn't exist. My suffering was for nothing. I am now old enough that...
"Wait!", Daecon interrupted. "What do you mean, 'The others were right'?"
That is a story for Dion to tell you, not me. Right now it does not matter anyway. Even with none of that, we could never be together.
“What? Why the hell not? I thought you were interested?”
I am interested. That is to say that I was. But it is moot. You are royalty. You heard my fathers talking. It is forbidden for royalty to be with common folk.
“Forbidden by who? Who makes the laws of your land? If I am royalty, can I not change the laws? And does it even matter? If your fathers are correct, I am the last of my kind. I have no desire, nor do I have the intention to spend my life alone. Laws be damned, I want to be with you, Evander. And besides, how are they going to punish me? Would they take the right to rule from me? Let them take it! I don't want to be a king!”
They might not punish you, but they could punish me for being with you.
Daecon scoffed. "Just let them try to touch you. If I understand what Leander, Owen, and Lucinda have told me, I will be more powerful than any of them. They will soon learn not to mess with you. With us."
Lucinda? Who is Lucinda?
"She is a Hecate. A Witch. She says she knows me. Anyway, she is the one who helped me perform the magic to heal you. I don't think even she knew that I could do this though. She looked and sounded surprised."
Ahh yes, the Hecate. Dion had told us about her, She is a big part of your past, though you do not know it.
"Are you kidding me? Does everybody on Earth know more about my past than I do?"
Daecon felt his temper rising but decided that this was not the time for it.
"Never mind. I'll talk to Dion about that when I see him again. Right now I am only interested in you. Please, Evander, come back to the land of the living with me. If I must rule I want you by my side."
The glowing ball hovered in front of Daecon as it considered this.
“What, here? Now? How could I even…”
Take me home. To my body. I wish to live again.
“Oh. OH!!”, Daecon said, blushing with embarrassment at his misunderstanding. “But how? How do I get you back?”
I do not know. This is your magic.
“Shit. Um, well, let’s see then. Maybe if I just…”
Daecon reached out with both hands and cupped them around the ball. He had expected it to be extremely hot, but it was simply warm. He felt the warmth spread into his hands and into his arms, then into his chest. He opened his hands again and the ball was gone.
In an instant he was back in the clearing, floating several metres above the ground, encapsulated in the ball of energy and still holding onto Evander’s body. He felt the warmth leave his chest, travel down his arms, through his fingertips, and into Evander. The lightning that had created the shield around them faded away, and they slowly sunk back toward the earth, Evander gently landing laying down and Daecon kneeling next to him. The violet glow was now fading rapidly.
Daecon had barely enough time to notice that Evander looked different before he released his grip and fell backward onto the grass. He was exhausted.