Angels: Moon and Sun
Hekate had taken a life. Whether or not she had pulled the trigger, she had just taken a life. The bile was beginning to rise into her throat when the policeman grabbed her shoulders. She couldn’t hear anything. Not the screams, not the policeman, not even Marcia. Her eyes couldn’t leave the body that was on the ground in front of her.
“Ma’am! Are you all right?” The policeman began to shake her shoulders. When she didn’t respond, he jerked her around, so she couldn’t see the body anymore. Her eyes didn’t move. He tried again to call out to her.
Hekate…you have to leave this place. You have to move.
Slowly, Hekate’s eyes began to blink as Moro’s voice brought life back to her. They met those of the policeman as she began to nod, “I’m fine.”
His eyes narrowed, not believing her. “Come on, we have to take your statement and the paramedics are going to need to check you out.” He noticed the two teenagers who were trying to get through the barrier of people, “Are those your friends?”
She nodded, “Yes.”
He waved to his colleagues, allowing Marcia and Erik through the crowd. Hekate’s knees nearly buckled when Marcia collided into her. Her arms gripped her neck so tightly, Hekate thought she would choke. Marcia was shaking as she whispered into her ear. “You scared me half to death. I’m not letting you do this alone. No way.”
Hekate slowly lifted one arm to wrap around Marcia’s waist as she glanced at Erik. His eyes were still wide in shock as if the man were still holding a gun to her head. “Are you sure you’re okay?”
“I need to get out of here,” she whispered.
Erik’s face suddenly hardened, “Okay. Follow my lead.”
He walked over to the policeman who had stepped away to give us a moment. Unable to hear them, Hekate merely stepped out of Marcia’s arms. Although unwilling to release her arms at first, Marcia finally took a step back but kept a firm grip on her arm.
Erik returned a moment later. “You can go to the bathroom over there. They’ll be waiting here for your statements.”
She bit hard into her tongue, hearing the hint in his voice. Hekate nodded, before walking towards the bathroom. In the corner of her eye, Erik began walking in the opposite direction.
When they were safely alone in the bathroom, Hekate scanned the room for an opening. Marcia caught on quickly, “Erik is probably going to head for his car and just leave. We need to do the same.”
“I agree,” she said before pointing towards the window in the back, “Think we can squeeze through that?”
Hoisting Marcia up, she pried the window open and began to crawl out. Before she jumped, she called out to Hekate in a whisper. “Long drop. Be careful.”
You both are sturdier than most. You’ll be fine.
Hekate nodded to Moro’s voice before beginning to climb out herself. It was a struggle with no one to boost her. Using the sink and stall for leverage, she climbed up to the window before pulling herself up and through. When she landed, her legs shook from the shock that ran through them. Had she done that only a few days ago, she was sure she would have broken an ankle.
“Where did we park again?” Marcia asked.
Hidden behind the dumpsters, Hekate peered around the corner. The police cars were converged at the entrance to the food court. A few rows of cars to the right was their car. Hekate pointed, “Over there. Come on.”
Keeping their backs to the police cars, the two of them walked slowly to their car. The last thing they wanted was to draw attention to themselves. Marcia gripped her arm again, clinging to her as if it would help the situation. Hekate noticed she was still shaking, but said nothing. She didn’t want to think about anything until they were safely at home.
Without hesitation, Hekate broke into a sprint.
Marcia ran next to her, trying to keep pace. “What’s wrong?”
They wouldn’t get far before finding out. A force suddenly hit the back of Hekate’s legs, causing her to tumble forward into the car. She slammed her head into the side mirror before hitting the ground, nearly knocking Marcia down with her.
Through the fog in her head, she looked to see the thief’s arms wrapped around her legs. He began to crawl towards her face. “I’m sorry. He said I can’t let you get away.”
As he reached for Hekate’s throat, Marcia kicked him clean in the face, knocking him into the side of the car next to them. “Hijo de puta!” she exclaimed.
Marcia quickly jerked her arms under Hekate’s to pull her up before turning to face the thief again. “You had better leave. Or you’ll regret it.”
He began to pick himself up off of the ground. He reached to wipe the blood dripping from his nose. “You don’t understand. I don’t have a choice.”
Hekate spit her own blood towards the thief’s feet. “There is always a choice.”
“Sometimes, there isn’t,” he said, his voice suddenly deeper than it had been a moment ago. His entire body shook, causing him to lean forward.
Hekate and Marcia could only watch in horror as his body began to twist in an unnatural fashion. His arms jerked to the side before he fell to his knees. When his neck jerked backwards, Hekate could see his face. It was screaming. He was screaming but there was no sound. They could only hear the cracks as his body was contorted.
Before either of them had a chance to react, he lunged towards them. He didn’t have to go far. His hand hit Hekate’s chest and it felt like she was being lit on fire. Marcia continued to punch and push him away, but he wouldn’t budge. The hand was glued to her.
His eyes were locked on Hekate’s. She felt the fire as it intensified. And she heard the screams in her head. She felt something beginning to brand her skin underneath his hand. To keep herself from screaming she bit her tongue, tasting the blood. Her hands reached to cover the ears, attempting to block out the wails and cries of the voices that had entered her mind.
Suddenly, the white wolf leaped from Hekate’s chest, onto the man. The moment his hand left her chest and slammed into the truck behind him, the voices were gone. Moro’s sharp teeth glistened before she bit into the man’s throat. Blood squirted out as she bit harder, staining her beautiful white coat of fur red.
Hekate didn’t move. She was frozen, staring at the thief’s face. His cheeks had sunken in as he attempted to scream again, but instead a gurgling sound came out. Her eyes never left his. They were wide, shocked. If someone stumbled upon them, it would look like an animal attacked an innocent bystander. Nothing about his appearance screamed demon or possession. He was nothing more than a puppet.
Snapping out of her trance, Hekate pushed Marcia out of the way, “Get in!”
Marcia ran to jump into the car, as Hekate slid into her seat, twisting the keys as fast as she could. The engine had barely roared to life before Hekate quickly shifted gears and pulled out of the parking lot. She drove in silence, attempting to calm her nerves as best she could by breathing. Marcia sat beside her, constantly looking behind them for the police or something worse.
Her chest burned the entire drive to Marcia’s house. When they finally arrived, Hekate turned the engine off, letting her hand fall to her lap. Eyes glazed over, she sat in silence.
“Are you okay?” Marcia asked in only a whisper.
Hekate could only shake her head. Before she could stop them, her eyes began to tear. The shock of the day’s events finally subsiding. Marcia reached over and wiped a drop of blood that had made it to Hekate’s cheek. “Why didn’t you fight back? You just stood there.”
Feeling the bile beginning to build, Hekate jerked the door open and rushed outside. She leaned against the side of the car as she became sick. Marcia jumped out of the car and ran around to hold her hair. She began to rub her back. “Take your time.”
After dry heaving a couple more times, Hekate finally leaned her back onto the car and met Marcia’s worried stare. “I killed today. That wasn’t a demon. Neither was that thief. They were humans, Marcia. Don’t you understand?”
She nodded. “I do. But here’s what keeps me going. I remember they were trying to kill you. Both of them. I’d rather see them dead, than you.”
Although she knew Marcia was right, it still ate at her. The thought that she had caused the death of those two men bit into her stomach, threatening to come back up again. Marcia grabbed her cheeks, forcing their eyes to meet again. “Listen to me. It isn’t your fault. That was them. It was not your fault.”
“She’s right,” a voice from behind said.
Hekate shifted out of Marcia’s grip to see Moro walking towards them with a small brown bag hanging from her mouth. Her fur coat was stained red, still dripping with blood. “Death decided to pay you a visit sooner than I anticipated. Both of those men were already dead the moment they met Death.”
A limp in Moro’s walk caused Hekate to narrow her eyes. “That’s not all his blood.”
The wolf tilted her head towards her hind leg. “The police took a shot at me, for killing the young man. It’s no matter. As soon as I am dormant again, it will be healed.”
Marcia moved to bend down to Moro’s level. “What’s in the bag?”
Moro tilted her head forward, allowing Marcia to take the bag. “It is the book they were trying to steal. I believe it might have some value.”
Hekate bent down to look Moro in the eyes. “Are you sure you’re all right?”
“I’m fine.” Moro leaned forward to lick the tears away from Hekate’s cheeks. When she stepped back, she glanced at the girl’s chest. “You’ve been marked.”
Hekate looked down towards the burning sensation that hadn’t subsided. Her chest was red from the heat, and on the top of her left breast was a brand. It was an odd shape. The mark looked as though it was supposed to be a small scythe, but there were four distinct claw marks over the handle. The blade itself was chipped in the middle and burned deeper than the claw marks.
As she reached to touch it, Moro bumped her hand with her nose. “Leave it. Nothing can be done if you’ve been marked.”
Marcia leaned in to take a closer look, “What do you mean? Can’t you heal it or something?”
“This isn’t a normal burn,” Moro began to explain, “This is the mark of a horseman. It cannot be healed. Once you’ve been marked, your fate is usually sealed.”
“Meaning I’ll die?” Hekate asked.
“No,” Moro said, shaking her head. “It means you can’t die.”
Marcia leaned back, pointing at the mark, “That’s a good thing, though. Right?”
“No,” Moro stated, hesitating to say more.
“Tell me,” Hekate said, her voice suddenly firm.
She sighed, flinching at the wound on her hindquarters before starting again. “After a human has been marked, then your soul has been claimed. So, on the day Hekate dies, her soul will be claimed by Death, itself. Forced to serve for eternity. Joining his army. Behind the sealed doors or not. It matters not. One way or another, you will be claimed. Most do not survive a month after they’ve been marked.”
Hekate leaned back until she hit the ground. She sat in a daze, not even hearing Marcia as she protested the thought. In one day, she had witnessed the death of two men and her soul had been claimed. Death wasn’t lying to her when he said some things were worse than death.
A ripping sensation caused Hekate to shake as her wings tore through her shirt and emerged. Marcia froze mid-sentence to stare at her best friend before looking around for the threat. Hekate began to stand, her eyes reflecting the burning on her chest, “He’s not taking me that easily.”
Moro, feeling the intense energy coming from Hekate, began to disappear and return to her dormant state. Hekate could feel her words as they echoed through her mind.
Angels Moon and Sun: Chapter Six Coming Soon…