Amon stepped back across the street, heading for the opposite corner. He was disdainful of the ultra-modern, overpriced, supposedly Asian eatery, but it made more sense than if he had headed into the Orpheum Children's Museum. After all, the club next door to it wouldn't open for several more hours. He entertained himself with thoughts of the literary and Latin influences that might have gone into naming the bar 'Soma' for the sole purpose of keeping his mind off of the event he had just witnessed.

Yes, he had told Robin good-bye. He remembered vividly the way she had hinted that he was betraying her by leaving, 'abandoning her' as it were. He bit the inside of his lip, face as impassive as ever, as he walked away from the crowd of norms staring at the young fire-witch. He knew that it was too much to ask for her to understand why he had done it.

Amon slipped through the door and waited patiently to be seated. He followed the mini-skirted waitress to a table, leaning his back against the wall and watching the door, as was his wont. He reached back and readjusted the tie on his thick, black ponytail, surprised at his own reflection. After all he had gone through in the past several months, he expected himself to look much older. Yes, he was thinner, his musculature more pronounced, but with his hair tied back, he looked more like the eighteen-year-old eager kid who had joined the STN only to have his wife hunted within the first few months of his beginning his job.

Witch. And the organization that stole my innocence.

He ordered a 'sushi sampler' and a gin, not paying any more attention to the waitress than was absolutely necessary to put in his order. She obviously admired the figure he cut in his black slacks, midnight blue shirt, and polished boots, but he really did not have a roving eye at the moment.

He had lied to her.

Amon knew that he had his reasons. He knew that he really had no choice than to turn his back on her and leave. The STN had, in fact, no idea that he was still alive, other than a few suspicions. His father, for instance, knew Amon's potential, knew that his son would not die in some explosion in Japan.

Damn you, Solomon.

Despite that, he had found it distinctly hard to make himself leave. He had not been able to watch as her eyes had filled with tears when he had told her that he was going. He had started to reach for her, had heard the pause in her voice before saying the word 'friendship'. There had been so much more he had wanted to say.

To protect himself, he had grown cold with her. He had accused her of being weak, being dependant, and then he had left. Those had been the hardest thirteen steps he had ever taken.

It had stormed that night.

Amon swore softly, surprising the waitress as she brought him her drink. He despised Craft-users; he hated witches. And yet, he was finding it harder and harder to control the winds. He had been called Stormwalker at STN headquarters, and he had hated the nickname as much as he hated the craft it represented. For a moment, he wondered if Robin had felt this helpless as her fire craft had grown and she had been on the run in Japan last year.

Get her out of your mind. The creepiness postulate states that to determine the youngest age you should date, take your age, divide it by two, and add seven. Your answer: 20. She's four years too young for you.

He didn't remember where he had heard that particular little 'mathematical formula', but it made an odd sort of sense. Not that he would ever admit to knowing it, let alone having used it in his thoughts in regard to Robin.

Although, with that rule in mind, when I'm 33, she'll be old enough for me.

He chided himself for his frivolity, but it was true that for the moment, the ridiculousness of his reasoning had lightened his mood just a little. He leaned back in the booth, sipping at the alcohol and staring at the fountain-wall. He had to give Ko-Fusion that; the place definitely had atmosphere.

Amon found himself contemplating the coincidence. He had left Robin in a sleepy little town a ways to the north, coming into the small college city to get away from the monotonous little burg. The odds that he should be at that intersection when Robin was using her Craft for the first time in months were phenomenal at best.

Witches are drawn together, hence covens. And the Adam will be drawn to protect Eve. A voice from his distant past spoke into his ear. When Amon had been a young, enthusiastic hunter, he had researched every aspect of craft as much as he could, to better understand it, to better be able to destroy it, going so far as to seek out the strongest witches he could find and make them tell him their secrets.

He now had the feeling that the Methuselah had searched out the most powerful young craft users she could find, knowing of their curiosity. She liked leading them astray. Why she had chosen Robin to destroy her, Amon could not guess.

A rite of passage? Why Robin? After all, there were six of us. Well, even if only five could get to her.

That was the secret that Amon was now protecting. There was not just Adam and Eve, there were Abraham and Sarah, as well as Isaac and Rebekah. There were six Arcana. All of them would find themselves in the fullness of their power. The prophecy of the witches did not tell how many of them would be able to control it, how many would be hunted.

How many would survive.

That was why he had left. He was a danger to her. His power was going to go out of control. It was already starting to. Amon ate his sushi, barely noting the difference in type and taste. At last he finished and sat, staring into his gin for a long time, before rising, paying his bill, and leaving.

As he stepped out the door, the wind picked up and storm clouds began to gather on the horizon.