Summary: He searched frantically around his neck for something that wasn't there. And I couldn't help but stare at him with pity, before I finally decided to go ahead and save him.
This is a Zahi x Serena Oneshot. I just felt like it, 'kay? R&R, please. Story in Serena's POV. I do, however, love Zahi. But, I think his 'newer' side -the human side of him- is a bit to innocent and... 'babyish'(lol) for my taste. I just thought they had an interesting relationship- or, at least during his using her and manipulating her. Lol. Anyway, I'll stop rambling now. :) - Takes place after book 8 and before book 9.
- I love this oneshot, a lot. Not sure why, though.
Disclaimer: I don't own Daughters of the Moon or any of its characters. If I did own DOTM, I would force book 13 to be published early. And when I mean force, I actually mean threaten, beat, attack and stalk anyone who would try and stop me. Lol. WHO'S WITH ME?!
I stalked down the dreary street, hearing the 'gracefully' steps of my heavy boots as they splashed on the puddles- filthy, muddy water splattering over my thin legs. It was then, in the near dark day, I heard the weak whimper and the cruel laughter that I halted, turning my head slightly toward an alley. So much for a day without Followers. And I knew these were Followers; from the ominous aura to the horror struck praying of one of their victims.
However, I was not going to allow that person to become a victim.
" Quit praying, it's not going to help." This voice was husky and mocking, as I approached the end of the alleyway, clamping a hand over my moon amulet to shield the piercing light that emenated from it.
" Yeah. We're just gonna bring you back. Don't you want that?" It caught me by suprise. They were bringing someone back to the Atrox? But who? I gingerly stepped closer, keeping my movements quiet. The victim simply prayed in an unfamiliar language - Arabic. The voice... It belonged to someone I knew. Without further hesitation, I unclasped the amulet, allowing the shimmering light to form around the entire dark area. It was then that I saw him.
He searched frantically around his neck for something that wasn't there. And I couldn't help but stare at him with pity, before I finally decided to go ahead and save him.
Before the two grotesque looking Followers could prepare for my attack, I sent a wave of energy in their direction- the larger of the two staggered back, and whipped around, staring at the moon. It was completely covered by darkness- its shadow form. Confused, he stepped back along with the lanky one, and without a second thought, shoved past me, running out of the alley and vanishing behind the corner of the brick building. They had been puzzled by unknown power and attack- a Daughter wasn't supposed to attack first. But then again, rules were meant to be broken.
" Thank you", Zahi whispered, his eyes full of intense fear.
I gave him one nod, then cocked my head. " What were you looking for?"
He shook his head and gazed at his neck, scowling. " My charm. It protects me against evil..." His voice trailed off as he lifted his head, his eyes boring into mine. I looked away, eyes narrowed. It was as if he were examining me.
" I'm sorry", he whispered, and I knew what his apology was for.
My head snapped back in his direction. " I know. But that's in the past. Forget about it."
He gritted his teeth and his hands curled into tight fists at his sides. " I try. But it's hard to forget what you did for me. You can't imagine the gratitude I felt for... releasing me from the Atrox. I can't forget- can't forget... you."
I fully understood what he was inplying, and I cast my eyes down, slightly appaled.
" So", he continued. " You're with-"
" Yes- yes I am", I interrupted, glaring at him.
His jaw unclenched. " I'm sorry. I didn't mean to upse-"
" I know", I sighed, the glanced behind my shoulder out into the street, ignoring the uneasy feelings swimming around in my stomach. " Well, it's been nice catching up"-Stupid, he tried to, no wait, forced you into the Cold Fire- " But, I'll just go now..."
Before I could turn, he clasped my arm, stopping me.
" What?" I demanded, my eyebrows pulling.
He bit his lower lip and stared down at me, apparently contemplating something. " I am sorry..."
I sighed in aggrivation. " I know. Just forget about it, okay?"
He nodded once, and released his hold on my leather sleeve. Before he could start another conversation, I walked rapidly out of the alley, trying hard to steady the level of my breathing. I could feel him staring after my form bfore I turned the corner, and knew that he was smiling wryly. What had I been so anxious about- to get away from him at least? He had been freed from his eternal damnation, and that side of him(the one belonging to the Atrox) no longer exsisted. So, why had I been so... afraid? Then, I giggled lightly. He had attempted to convert me to the lowest if all evils, after all. I shouldn't have been so frightened, though. He was Zahi. That creature -that monster- that had ripped the talisman from my neck was not Zahi.
I shot one more glance behind my shoulder, but I only caught sight of the dark moon, my savior. He was not there. I sighed, knowing he hadn't been watching me walk away.
I sat on the pine chair, slightly scooted away from the table as I ran the bow gently and gracefully across the cello's strings, lost in the pure, beautiful bliss of the music as it flooded the kitchen. I was drowning in my own melody, loving everything about this moment. To bad it was shattered, as a cold, yet gentle hand reached out and tapped me. My hand immediately stopped and I twirled around sharply, expecting Collin or maybe Jimena. I couldn't conceal the gasp that escaped my lips in a low whisper.
" Sorry", he apologized, a crooked smile on his face. " I did not mean to frighten you."
I blinked, still shocked. " Zahi", I breathed out. That night -a few days ago- was probably the only time I expected to encounter him, again.
He nodded and gazed at the cello, his eyes tortured by the 'other' memory, I guessed. His old self, of when he had entered the kitchen and had watched me play. I wondered if he had actually enjoyed my comapny and the music or if that had also been a charade of his in order to gain my trust and faith.
" It's still beautiful", he complimented.
" Do you need something?" I then paused and arched an eyebrow. " How did you get in here? Do you normally walk into a person's house without permission and surprise them?"
He chuckled, musical and husky to my ears. " No. I guess I should have knocked, first."
" You think?" I murmmured, sarcastic.
He pulled out a chair and stared at me, expectant.
" You may sit down", I sighed, shaking my head, not believing this was happpening. He smiled and sat down, folding his hands on his laps as he stared at me. Shifting uneasily and crossing my legs, I bit my lower lip and cleared my throat.
" Do you want something?" I asked.
My eyebrows rose as I waited. When he did not respond, I spoke once more. " What do you want?"
" I want..." He turned away, staring at the walls, his mind deep in thought. Finally, after a good long ten seconds, he turned his attention back to me and continued, his voice softer. " For you to read the tarot cards for me. I have twenty dollars."
I studied him, and judging by the hesitation and amount of thinking that he had done, that was definitely not what he wanted. Instead of pressing on, I simply shook my head, but not about the tarot cards- that I could do.
" You don't need to pay", I spoke, standing up.
" But, that would be unfair to the other people who have paid", he replied, trying to block a smile.
" It would, wouldn't it?" I smirked and headed toward the living room where my tarot cards lay stacked on the coffee table. When I returned, he was still sitting, his from still, as if he were a statue.
I sat down and spread the cards on the table. " Think of your question- you know the drill."
His gaze converted back to me, but he had slowly closed his eyes. He knew my powers, so I did not need to be conspicuous about the reading. However, his eyes opened and he suddenly placed his hand on mine, stopping me as I was shuffling them.
" Don't read my mind." He then leaned back, his hand going with him, and waited patiently.
I had faith in the tarot cards. I didn't need to read his mind. But, I didn't know why he didn't want me to read his mind. Actually, it was probably private or maybe... I didn't want to think that. I hoped this was not about me.
" Okay", I started to explain. " Here." I handed him the shuffled deck. " Now, while thinking of your question, divide the deck into three sperate stacks."
He simply nodded, and swiftly and gracefully, he had divided them. After pulling his hands away, I reached out and grabbed a deck. Flipping the first card over, it was The Lovers. I bit my lower lip once more, careful not to cause it to bleed, and glanced up at Zahi. He payed no real attention to it, and waited for me to continue.
" Do you want me to tell you what it means?" I asked, hoping he would say no.
He shrugged. " Flip the other two over, then you can tell me."
I nodded and grasped the other. Slowly, I turned it over, praying for something a bit more 'innocent'. The Temperance, is what the card showed; a person with with large white, feathery wings, pouring a liquid from one cup to another. Not as bad as before, at least. I grabbed the last one, and closing my eyes, turned it over. It showed The Star- a naked woman kneeling by water, one foot on the ground and the other in the water, and she was pouring a liquid into the water and another cup of of liquid on the ground. I sighed, thankful that it was nothing that would trouble him or me.
" Now you may explain to me", he spoke, startling me.
Nodding, I gestured to The Star. " This- The Star- means you still have hope for something or someone, even though it seems as if tje darkest hour has past over you. You still have faith in you future, and this card will inspire a happy ending, I guess you could say."
He smiled, and motioned for the next.
" The Temperance", I continued, wondering what his question had been. " This is basically a questioning of you and who you are. You are still judging, not quite sure, yet on something, usually yourself or an outcome."
Last one. I didn't understand why it was bothering me so much.
" The Lovers. This one is simple. You either or desire something or... someone. It also describes us being steered in the direction of something or someone. Fate, I guess you could say..." My voice trailed off as I finished.
A smile stretched across his face as he sat there, staring at me.
" Yes, I know." He stood up, still smiling, and bowed his head as a show of gratitude. " Thank you, Serena, for the reading and that short show of your cello playing. And for... saving me the other night. I wish you a wonderful life, now, I must be on my way."
I scoffed. " You're acting like you're leaving forever..."
He laughed, genuine and pure. " I am! Well, I am going back to France, maybe visit Morocco. So, this is goodbye."
Without another word, he left, going to the back door. Quickly, I entered his mind, searching for the question. Will my life lead me to someone like Serena, flashed through my own mind. I felt heat rise to my cheeks, as a blush creeped across my cheeks.
" That's so sweet", I mused. I guess I'm more fascinating than I thought...
I stared at the table. Then, I grabbed a red apple from the wooden bowl in the center, and gazed at it- the red reflected by the hanging light. The Forbidden Fruit. Biting into it, juice running down the side of my mouth, I noted that it was sour.