The Cambion Chronicles Ch. 09

tagIncest/TabooThe Cambion Chronicles Ch. 09

Father Falon paced around the church garden, anxiously waiting. When the old car pulled up he let out a sigh of relief, they were here. But this time it was just the blond man, the silver-haired woman wasn't in the car. Gabriel locked the car's door and looked around, entering the church garden with his hands in his jacket pockets. He approached father Falon with a nod, "Good evening, Father".
Gabriel's expression and voice tone weren't exactly reassuring. He didn't seem like someone who had just been successful in his mission, "Good evening, son. What news do you bring? Did you manage to dispose of the… demonic threat?"
Gabriel shook his head, "I wounded her badly but she escaped. I'm tracking her down, trying to find out where she could have gone and pick up the trail. Has she made any contact in the past forty-eight hours?"
Father Falon's heart was racing. He couldn't help but imagine Kristanna wandering around wounded, in pain. He thought the hunters would be quick, this is not what he had in mind. Despite having discovered her demonic nature, Father Falon couldn't deny that somewhere deep inside he wished things were back to normal, with the nun helping him on his daily routine, "No, there has been no contact from her so far. I… I thought it was done until you contacted me earlier."
Gabriel nodded, he kept looking around, it was clear he was on alert. Or maybe he just missed Octavia watching his back, "You said she was referred to you by another nun who manages a school nearby?"
Father Falon nodded in response, "Yes, Mother Grace is the headmaster of this reforming school for girls who have strayed away from God. It's about an hour's drive from here. Her work has always been stellar, she provides routine and meaning to these lost girls. Do you think something bad could have happened to them?"
Anyone with common sense could see how scared Father Falon was, Gabriel was no exception. He was fishing for an answer that would give him hope, but the hunter had none. If Mother Grace had referred Kristanna to work with Father Falon chances were that she was under the influence of the demon. And if the headmaster of the school has been reached, then it stood to reason that everyone would probably be compromised.
"I don't want to jump to conclusions just yet, Father. I'll have to run this up the chain of command. Cases of demons deeply infiltrated in church organizations like this are always complicated to handle. We will have to find out how deep she has affected the nuns and students at the school before we make any decisions. It will be handled very discreetly and as humanely as possible. You have done your part exposing her, and for that I am grateful. I've seen too many men of faith fall to the charms of these demons. You restored some of my faith in the clergy, Father. I'm gonna need the address to this school and all information you have."
Father Falon nodded, he seemed disappointed but clung to the hopes that it would all sort itself out, "Vincent Jones, the man who recorded the video I sent you. He said he is at your disposal for anything you need. He is a powerful man with many resources so just let me know if you need anything. And what about Margaret and her daughter? Are they safe?"
The hunter took a deep breath, letting out a frustrated sigh as he was reminded of how badly his mission had failed, "They defended the demon when we came for her. It pains me to say that they were too far gone, completely corrupted by her influence. I didn't want to believe it, but now they are missing, very likely aiding the demon. If you hear from them or learn anything from your flock I'll need you to contact me at once. I'm also gonna need a contact for Mr. Jones, if he knew Margaret and her daughter for years he may be of great help in finding their whereabouts."
The priest was almost in tears, he began pacing around once more, disturbed by the news, "The Lord will provide and protect, I am sure of it!" He attempted to comfort himself more than anyone else. Gabriel gave him a few seconds to regain composure before he spoke again, "Now, can I look at her bedroom? I want to go through her things, any clues may help me track her down or find out where she went."
Father Falon nodded and guided Gabriel back into the church, taking him to Kristanna's room. As he watched Gabriel turn every drawer loose and look at every possible hidden spot in her chambers, a tear slid down the Father's left cheek.
Gabriel approached the father with a pamphlet of the local dinner, "Did she go to this place often?" He inquired.
"Oh, yes. She had breakfast or lunch there quite often, almost daily when I think about it. I think I saw her talking to one of the waitresses there a couple of times, a pregnant girl, but I don't know her name… Oh Lord, she is pregnant! Do you think that her and Kristanna…".
The hunter pondered, putting the pamphlet in his inner pocket, "Maybe I should go by and have a talk with this waitress".
Octavia landed on her feet after jumping through a narrow window. She fell right into the evidence room. One day watching the shift changes and overall security of the precinct was all it took for the hunter to spot its major flaws. Guards who abandoned their posts to chat, or to get snacks. Easily climbable outer walls, faulty windows with partially unscrewed protection fences, like the one she had just removed and jumped through. "Sadly, these are the people in charge of North Jefferson's security," she thought as she walked around the corridors between metallic, tall shelves.
It took her a few minutes to understand the logic used in evidence keeping, but she managed to find what she looked for. She climbed the ladder to the top of one of the shelves and grabbed the box with the case number she wanted. Climbing back down, she carefully picked the lock on the padlock that kept the box sealed. As Octavia opened the box she frowned with disappointment.
Five minutes later she was at a nearby alley standing next to her motorcycle. She removed the white mask that covered her mouth and the hoodie as she paced around in frustration, punching the wall. The Divinum wasn't there, somehow the evidence from her assault at Margaret's house had been moved. Why would the police move evidence from an open case? The first thing that came to Octavia's mind was corruption. Someone inside had an agenda. But she had no idea who was responsible or where her Divinium arrows could be now.
With her plan to recover the Divinum arrows put to a halt, Octavia needed time to think. She put on a white helmet and hopped on her bike. It was a fully customized chopper, the gas tank at the front was bright white. At the back, brown leather bags on the sides resembled the color of Octavia's jacket, the metal parts of the motorcycle were flawlessly chromed, like mirrors they reflected the light with bright silver.
Octavia wasn't riding towards anywhere in particular, she just wanted to see the city, feel the wind on her face, and think. But without realizing, the huntress started to head towards a familiar area. A place that represented an earlier life from many years ago when she first passed by North Jefferson. She had promised never to come back but lost and without the next step to her plan, her mind naturally wandered to the only familiar thing in the area.
There was more going on in Octavia's head than just her failed plan. Even more than she was perhaps aware of. For years now, the huntress felt numb and without purpose. Gabriel was the only one close. She fought for him and alongside him, an old friend, a mentor. She effectively didn't care about the upper hierarchy of the Celestial Rise. She knew they were there, layers of leaders, better hunters, undoubtedly more powerful and older. But they were distant, detached. Too high in their ivory towers to even see the world they fought for. Octavia lived in that world every day and, despite all their efforts, it felt like she made no difference.
When she hopped off her bike and removed her helmet, she looked at the blinking sign of the pub in front of her. A few of the lights were not working, but she could still make out the letters: Gwyneth's Pub, Moto-Rock Bar. The parking area next to the pub had five other customized choppers parked. A small number when compared to what Octavia remembered of the early days when every biker gang used to hang out here. It was strange to look around, the place hadn't changed much, it was just worn out by time. She still remembered how bright that sign had once been. Now covered in dust, mold, and with broken lights, it was like a shadow of its former self.
She walked in, the door squeaked as it opened. Octavia sat on one of the stools by the counter. She saw the bartender at a faraway table with five particularly loud men. The woman was placing their beers on the table and trying not to get her ass slapped as she walked back behind the counter. She spotted Octavia by the stool and approached, disbelief in her eyes. Her lips parted in surprise as she slowly moved toward the silvered-hair huntress, "I can't believe it…"
Octavia simply looked down, she could barely stand to look at the woman, almost hiding inside the collars of her jacket with her elbows placed on the counter. Gwyneth was a middle-aged woman, already well into her fifties. She was in shape, with short black hair, bright green eyes, make-up on point, and a nose ring. She wore a ragged rock-band top and some jeans shorts. It seemed like her wardrobe hadn't been updated since the nineties.
Despite her age, the bartender still looked good. She must have been stunning in her prime, "Twenty three fucking years and six months since you last walked through that door. I thought you were dead! But look at you, it's like time didn't even pass. You look exactly the same as the day you left. How's that even possible?"
Octavia looked at Gwyneth with sad eyes. She could see the tiredness in her friend's face, the toll that the years had taken on her. Her green eyes were starting to get red, she was at the brink of tears, likely holding them back with sheer anger.
"Do you remember all those stories I shared with you?" Octavia asked, almost stumbling on her words.
Gwyneth rolled her eyes, "Yeah, all of the demon bullshit you made up so you wouldn't reveal anything about yourself. I enjoyed those metaphors, you were weird and interesting. Until they got old, that is."
"They may not all have been metaphors… " Octavia spoke hesitantly. She knew it was ridiculous to say that to a regular person.
Gwyneth chuckled and shook her head in disbelief, "You left! Not even a goodbye, you just walked out and never came back! You had to know I'd wait for you, right? That I wouldn't just "move on with life" after what we had".
As the bartender raised her voice, she picked the attention of the men sitting by the table. They looked over and saw Octavia sitting there, "Uuhh guys, check that out. What a babe!"
Octavia briefly looked at the men, noticing they were talking about her, but her focus was on Gwyneth, "I know, I know. I had my reasons to leave. What we had, it wasn't right, it would never be accepted by the people I work for. My life is dangerous, I deal with people you wouldn't want to get involved with, I couldn't bring you into that. It tore me apart to leave you behind but… You have to believe me when I say I had no choice."
"Then why are you here now? What changed?" Gwyneth asked angrily, breathing heavily as the effort to hold back her tears became harder.
"I changed!"Octavia almost screamed back, everything she spoke occurred to her just now, a flood of backed-up thoughts she had been avoiding for years. But that granted a certain weight and credibility to her words that could not be faked, and Gwyneth picked up on that honesty. An openness that Octavia hadn't displayed in ages, "Since I left you behind, it's like my life has been frozen. I wake up every day with this… this anger in my chest. I do what I have to do, telling myself the world will be better for it. But I look around and it's getting worse! I guess… I guess I don't want to do this anymore… But I couldn't admit it. Until I saw you, looked at your face. You always made me think, see things I didn't, understand myself better. That will never change."
Gwyneth stared at her friend, "Don't do this! Don't come back and talk to me as if you never left! You expect me to believe that all of the demon shit you talked about before was real? That you're a demon hunter, and that's why you left? What kind of weed are you smoking, honey? You should have thought of a better reason before you put your leather boots back onto this bar."
Octavia opened her mouth to respond, but their conversation was interrupted as a man sat on the stool next to her confidently. He was wearing a vest from the local biker gang, jeans, and leather boots. The typical middle-aged biker with a long mustache that went down the sides of his mouth like Lemmy from Motorhead. He seemed oblivious to the importance of the conversation being carried, "Hey babe, haven't seen you around here before. You wanna hang out with me and the boys? Plenty of room at our table, we can pay for the booze".
The huntress turned to the man and looked at him from head to toe, she took a deep breath to center herself before she answered, "Look, I'm flattered but I'm talking to my long-time friend here so, maybe some other day."
The man persisted, "Come on, babe. I can see you're all worked up, it's not like you're enjoying talking to this old hag! If you come with us I can show you a good time, promise." The man's hand wrapped around Octavia's arm.
She looked at his hand, then back at him with a much less friendly face than before, she spoke in a disturbingly calm tone for the contents of her message, "If you don't take that hand off of my arm, I'll tear yours from your shoulder and beat you with it."
Immediately the man pulled back, raising his hands in a surrendering gesture as he stood up, "Wow! Damn girl, no need to go biblical and all! I just wanted to show you a good time!" He looked over his shoulder to the table with his buddies and screamed, "Look at this bitch, boys? We got a violent one here! I think she is a lesbian. Is Gwyneth your girlfriend? I'm guessing you're the man of the relationship with that attitude. I'm sorry I crashed your relationship discussion, sweet cheeks".
The other four men stood up and slowly moved towards Octavia. His words proved he was well aware of the importance of their talk, he simply didn't care. Gwyneth had seen enough bar fights to know what was coming. This was the time she would normally intervene, ask them to take it outside, maybe even pull the shotgun from under the counter to calm everyone down. But she wasn't feeling like saving Octavia from an ass-kicking right now, she felt like she probably deserved it. She didn't care about the men either, one of them called her an old hag after all. So she stood back, watching the events unfold.
"Look, I was very clear the first time you asked. I don't want to start a fight here, but if there is a fight, I'm gonna finish it. And I promise that you and your buddies back there are not gonna enjoy it."
The man laughed, "Damn! Look at this attitude! You talk a lot of shit, girl! But we are five bigger guys against you. What do you think you can accomplish here? Making us feel bad for hitting a woman?"
That was it, Octavia's already short fuse had been lit and then burned to a crisp. She slowly removed her jacket, hung it on a hook under the counter, and popped the joints on her neck. The men whistled at her as she revealed her tight, white tank top, perky breasts, and toned arms. She ignored them, standing up and taking a step forward, she moved like lightning, her punch was so fast Gwyneth had trouble seeing it. With no warning, one jab hit the center of the man's face causing him to stumble back, held by his buddies. His nose bleeding. They pushed him back up as he held his nose, "Fucking bitch! You broke my goddamn nose!" He said in anger.
Octavia kept her fighting stance as all five men charged her. She did her best to dodge them and do the most damage, it was clear she was way faster and knew what she was doing. But still, they were five. One of them charged and grabbed her waist, shoving her into the counter. She grabbed his neck and began hitting his back with her elbow. She took a few swings to the face from the other man before she broke off.
The fight moved through the bar, Octavia always managed to break free from their grappling attempts, walking back and trying to keep them all in front of her before connecting again and trading more blows. The men were starting to look worse than her as the seconds passed. She was wearing them down
But eventually, they managed to get the jump on Octavia and she fell with her back on a table. The men began to restrain her arms and legs as she kicked them away and struggled to escape, "Hold this bitch down! She's fucking strong!"
Gwyneth had the phone in hand behind the counter, this was enough. She was typing "911" before grabbing her shotgun when she saw a light flashing across the walls of the pub. She lifted her face from the phone and looked at the table.
All five men were on the ground, stunned by some kind of flashbang. Octavia stood up, her eyes were nothing but white light, and floating behind her were two angelic wings. They were translucent, made of pure light, matching the glow in her eyes. Above Octavia's head floated some sort of crown or halo made of the same light. It wasn't a perfect ring as halos are often depicted. This was more elaborate, like a horizontal tiara that didn't connect at the back, with an additional circle of light flowing higher at the front. It reminded Gwyneth of the Omega Greek letter.
Octavia saw one of the men getting up, she punched him down to the floor with a vicious right hook. He didn't move. Another one stood up and ran, limping out of the bar. Two others protected their eyes from the light and begged for mercy. Octavia ignored them and moved to the one that had approached her at the counter and started all of this. She stepped on his back on the floor and knelt over him, grabbing his arm and pulling it up, "I told you what I was gonna do, didn't I? Now let me see that arm!"
The man screamed in pain as his shoulder popped loudly, the joint strained by Octavia's pull. "AHHH! PLEASE NO! I'll go! We'll leave you alone!" The man begged among his cries of pain as Octavia twisted his arm further and further towards an angle it wasn't supposed to bend. She eventually let go, stepping off of his back and containing herself. The halo and wings disappeared, her eyes came back to normal. The man's arm was probably dislocated as it fell limp to the ground. He grabbed his shoulder in pain and got up, stumbling out of the bar, "Fucking psycho bitch!"
The other two men quickly grabbed their unconscious friend and dragged him out, fear in their faces. Gwyneth let the phone fall from her hand, staring at Octavia, "You weren't fucking around with those demons stories, were you?"
Octavia shook her head, "We need to talk."
The past few days had been hard on Kristanna. But unlike being stabbed by a Divinium blade or almost devoured by an ancient pit lord, this was self-imposed. With Helen's assistance, Kristanna had been training hard to harness and control her powers. She knew that it was a matter of time until she had to confront the Celestial Rise again. And if not them, maybe Samantha would discover Helen's betrayal and find out that Kristanna had survived the encounter with the pit lord in the basement.

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