Disclaimer: I don't own Daughters of the Moon, obviously.


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.cutting thorns.

Maggie, her slender fingers gingerly stirring the milk into the tea, stared at both girls. Jimena Castillo, her sleek black hair in a high ponytail, had her arms folded across her chest, while pure hell burned in her eyes as she glared at her fellow comrade: an equally beautiful, jade-eyed Daughter by the name of Serena Killingsworth. The telepath was shrinking back in her seat, truly terrified and perplexed by the hellish glare being sent her way.

"Why the hell am I here?" Jimena demanded, seething.

Serena piped up, "Yeah, um, lady—"

"Shut the hell up," she hissed, making Maggie sigh, all the while wondering how such a beautiful girl could be so corrupted by such savage, raging emotions. But Serena snapped her mouth shut and opted to stare at the old woman, trying to ignore the heated gaze she was still receiving, before the fortune-teller continued, "I don't know what kind of bruja"—she motioned to Maggie—"you are, but I want answers. Now."

"Oh, I can assure you, I'm no where near a witch," Maggie laughed softly, the sound oddly soothing to both girls. She slid the teacups to them, and ordered silkily, "Drink. It's good for you."

"Thanks," Serena murmured, casting a cautious glance at the dark-haired teenager across from her, who was currently having an inward struggle as to whether or not drink the tea that might be poison or mixed with drugs. After reassuring herself that an old woman wouldn't try to murder her, she leaned forward, strands of hair spilling over her broad shoulders, and delicate picked up the porcelain cup.

"This is good," Serena commented, breathing in the sweet aroma.

Jimena nodded, astonished. "Yeah… I usually hate tea."

"Thank you," Maggie said in a papery thin voice, before her explanation came, "I know of your inhuman powers"—they both stiffened—"and I'm going to explain how and why you have these powers. At first, you may not believe me. In fact, not many do… But it's fate, and you'll soon realize what exactly you were meant to do with these powers. Serena," she stared at the young girl, "You have the power of telepathy, and Jimena"—her eyes found the dark-eyed girl—"I know of your ability to see the future through your visions—"

"How could you know this?" Jimena interjected, her entire frame shaking, "You are a witch."

Maggie remained patient. "It would be better to know the truth rather than hiding in the dark for the remainder of your life. May I continue?" She folded her hands on her lap and waited. The fortune-teller leaned back in her seat and with a vulnerable look, nodded once.

"Yes, so… You two girls are Daughters of the Moon. You were meant to fight an ancient evil known as the Atrox. I know none of this may not make any sense at the moment, but believe me, you two were meant for a great destiny… You were meant to save the world and protect humanity from the Atrox and its Followers. Your powers are meant to defeat the Atrox. You two were meant to work together as one, as comrades… Jimena? Is something the matter…?"

Serena watched as the now furious girl's face turned purple, while disbelief. She spoke venomously, spitting her words as though they were poison on her tongue. "Okay, all this crap is fucking stupid, but if it was true… You expect me to fight along that wimp?"

The telepath frowned.

"And I don't want some little girl squirming around my mind like some little worm, 'cause I have privacy and secrets that I don't trust this punta with." Her eyes then traveled along Serena's attire. "We definitely are no where near alike, and I don't and won't trust her with my life."

Yes, they were indeed no where near alike. Jimena with her tough, badass persona, dark and dangerous eyes, baggy clothes, and morbid, constantly adventurous past—she stole cars, for God's sake, which scared Serena immensely! But then there was Serena, her slender, non-muscular body, fishnets and pierced tongue, her calm attitude, and especially her simple life that paralleled Jimena's chaotic one.

"I won't go into your personal life," Serena bit out through gritted teeth, "I won't go into your mind for that kind of stuff."

"Your damn right you won't," Jimena snapped.

Maggie held up her hand, silencing them, before saying, "Please, it's nothing to do with your appearance or your life. Girls, this is about who you are inside—your selflessness, your courage, and your intelligence and wisdom, but especially… your purity of heart. These are what make you Goddesses…"

"Goddesses?" Jimena's eyebrows shot up. "What drugs are you on, lady? I steal cars and shoot guns!" Her voice was gradually rising, evident frustration slicing through her patience and snapping her veins, "How can I have a pure heart? And fight this Atrox thing… with her?" She glared at the girl again, this time, her eyes flaming, "No way, man. I can beat this thing on my own. Just give me a nice working gun and I'll—"

"Violence can not defeat the Atrox," Maggie interrupted, shaking her head, "Guns, knives, fists… these are all elements of violence. Things such as those will actually increase the Atrox's power. You must use your powers and your intelligence and your goodness to defeat it… If you fail, then the Atrox will destroy the world and hope. Hope is your guiding light."

Serena leaned forward, eyes wide. "I-I can't use my powers to defeat the Atrox… I can barely use them as it is!"

Maggie smiled. "That is why I'm here: to teach you, to mentor you, to guide you. You two have much to learn, along with your fellow other sisters—"

"There are more of us?" Jimena gaped.

"A couple of more, yes," Maggie nodded. "But as of right now, you are the only two to have been discovered. As of right now, your primary duty is to protect people from Followers, the one who serve the Atrox. They steal hope and use their mind powers to do so."

"How do we fight them then?" Jimena sighed.

Maggie smiled. "I will teach you."

"Without guns, too!" The dark-haired girl groaned.

------------------------

Jimena and Serena walked quietly together down the foggy street, an uncomfortable silence forming between the two. It has been weeks since their meeting, and as time passed, they had been training—using their mind and learning the mind battles that would occur if they were to ever face a Follower, who had been described as dark, violent, and greedy. Their eyes, glowing yellow in the moonlight, would show it all.

"I still can't believe it," Jimena muttered, her breath turning to mist in the air.

"Me neither," Serena agreed.

Jimena smirked. "I'm not talking about being Goddess… I'm talking about working with you, of all people." She shook her head, still annoyed and bewildered by the fact that she must work with this punk. "I mean, honestly…?" She stared at the unresponsive girl, and quickly added, for a reason she couldn't comprehend, "Well, you're good at poetry, though."

"When have you seen my poems?" Serena prompted, stunned.

"I took a peek while you were writing," Jimena said innocently, staring away from her. "Something about a rose with thorns, but the thorns eventually are torn away or something because it discovers that it isn't a simple rose—something about a rose isn't a rose without thorns. I actually really didn't get it," she finally admitted, "Did that mean that the rose was different, I guess?"

"Yeah…," Serena mumbled, red painting her cheeks.

Jimena's eyebrows furrowed, "Was that inspired by your own life?"

"… Yours…"

"Mine?" She gawked. "How can—"

"It's just your nature—thorns which prevent anyone from getting in. But it also means that sooner or later you'll realize something and your thorns will fall, making you not a rose. Just like me, you'll always being one rose in an entire bush without thorns… We're different…" Serena, biting her lower lip to keep from blurting out anything else, stopped suddenly. Jimena did also, noticing the bright light illuminating from the amulet around her neck. For the first time in so long, she felt anxious, her eyes distressed.

Serena whirled around, her eyes weary. "Does that mean—?"

"Yeah," Jimena whispered, "Followers…"

They were tense, their skin crawling, all the while building their power for their first battle. And then, from somewhere ahead, three shady figures emerging—their demented laughter sending shivers up Jimena and Serena's spines. The moonlight was half bright, but the moment one of three stepped into the beam of silver, his eyes burned yellow.

"Our first batch of Daughters in so long," the tallest one rejoiced, "I'm going to have fun."

"Let's get this over with," Serena muttered confidently to Jimena. The three Followers circled, as though they were ravenous hyenas stumbling upon a bundle of helpless sheep. Both girls entwined their fingers together, their power melding, and both saw as a crackling wave of energy screamed toward them. Quickly, Serena deflected it, her energy faltering from that simple task, and Jimena used this as a way to strike the snickering Follower. He staggered back, confused, and his foot caught on a crack in the cement; he fell on his back.

"Moron," the apparent leader sneered, before striking Jimena in the chest with his own energy. She was forced to stumble away from the sheer force, and Serena, furious, slammed her own sparks of energy into the Follower's head. He swiveled around, eyes narrowed, and attempted to use his power o her too, but the two both combined their power and lashed out on him.

"The hell—?" He fell back and right onto the other one, who hissed in pain on the impact. Jimena cracked a smile, while the remaining third Follower cursed in irritation at his comrades.

"Get 'em," Serena snickered.

"Right."

Their power, full force, fused together—becoming a flash of colors that struck him—shattering his mind. Squealing, he toppled over, falling right on top of his fallen comrades, both shouting in pain. "Man, that's got to be the most girly scream I ever heard!" Jimena joked, smirking, and after hooking her arm around Serena's, both girls strolled the other way, grinning.

"I guess I don't have thorns," Jimena teased.

Serena laughed loudly. "I guess not, then!"

"And you aren't a wimp," she continued, smiling gratefully, "I mean… I guess I was too judgmental." Serena cocked an eyebrow. "Okay, maybe a lot! But if you knew me… I have a lot of pride and other crap… Seriously, I always have to be right… And you proved me wrong."

"Have I earned your respect?"

Jimena's eyes sparked with glee. "Yep." She stopped and stood in front of Serena, holding out her hand. "Friends?"

"Friends."

They shook hands.