A/N: This is the end for now, but I already started working on the sequel. It will be called "Lineage II: Daydreams" and should be posted soon. The story will focus on Jack this time, but will also address the demon issue, the aftermath of Fi receiving her magic, and Molly's new acceptance of the supernatural. Thanks so much to un7derestimated for all of the amazingly awesome reviews! If anyone else has been reading this, I'd love some feedback, both on this story and any suggestions for the sequel. Thanks for reading!
Fear took over her emotions. The confusion, the morbid curiosity...it all faded into the background. Fiona could only feel the terror of where she was, of what may come.
Tears began to fall, and she didn't bother to wipe them away. No one appeared to be around to see them. The rooftop was as empty as when she had been trapped there the first time, the door to the stairs closed behind her. She was even wearing the same clothes. If she was having a nightmare, she honestly wondered why it had taken her so long. Really, she'd think that recurring nightmares of a traumatic event would start the night after it happened, not three weeks later.
"D-daddy?" she called out through her tears. Apparently, receiving her powers had left her an emotional mess, which probably explained her break down the night before. Her grandmother had said not to worry, it was just another side effect of unlocking magic.
There was no response. Fi rubbed her arms, as the rooftop was colder than before, and began to walk around. Maybe if she started moving, something would happen that would eventually lead to this dream's end. She doubted it would if she just stood there.
But before she could take five steps, she heard a voice behind her.
Relief pushed aside the fear as she whirled around. She'd expected to see her father in the transparent form...but was shocked when he appeared to be in a solid body. She ran to him and threw her arms around her father, for the first time she could remember. "Daddy," she whispered. "What's going on? Am...am I dreaming?"
"No, baby," Rick answered, his hug just as tight as hers. "I'm here."
When Fi reluctantly broke away, she stared up at her father in awe. "B-but how? You've never come to me like this before."
"I've never been able to," Rick replied simply.
"You mean...because of the spell we cast," Fi replied. When he nodded, she almost wanted to laugh with gratitude. In that moment, all the unpleasant side effects of restoring her magic were worth it. "I've read about this. Psychics or mediums draw ghosts to them because of their paranormal energy. The boost makes it easier for ghosts to appear."
Rick gave her a proud smile. "That's right. Your impressive knowledge of the supernatural is what has gotten you this far. But in order to defeat this evil, you will need to embrace your magic as well."
"This evil...what is it, Daddy? It is a demon, right? How do I fight it?" Fiona asked, not bothering to hide her need for answers. She wasn't going to make the same mistake as last time, when she had barely asked him one.
Anxiety in his face, Rick hesitated before he replied, "It is a demon, but a special kind called the Ora. It's one of several powerful demons who police the line between this world and the evil one, to make sure it isn't crossed by a being of good. Much like you have done in the past two years, I helped numerous innocent humans fight off evil creatures, and in the process..."
"Crossed that line and got yourself killed by the Ora," Fi finished for him. When he blinked at her in surprise, she realized that maybe she was a little more blunt than was tactful. She hadn't known where the sudden anger had come from...maybe some resentment that he might still be alive had he just stayed away from it all. But she knew that was selfish, as he probably helped dozens of people in the process, much like she had. "Sorry., I'm just...mad for the wrong reason. That spell really messed me up."
Rick nodded. "It is an intense spell." He paused as he stared at her, a thoughtful look on his face. "Although, if I had maybe been more careful, refused some cases, maybe things would have turned out differently. Your mother would probably agree."
Guilty that she had upset him in their short time together, Fi shook her head. "No. She loves you, misses you so much. We all do."
"I know, I love you all too," Rick said, then suddenly became apologetic. "And I'm so sorry. That's why I'm here, Fiona. I know you and your mother must be so angry for keeping this from you. But especially you, for keeping your power hidden. I hope you can understand that my only intention was to protect you."
He was right, on some level. Of course Fi couldn't help but feel some anger that she never knew she'd had magical abilities. She might have been better prepared against all of the evil she'd encountered the last two years. While she persevered, she also would have had an easier time of it, probably. She also missed what could have been, had she known of her heritage and how to effectively use her power.
But then, like she had when she first learned of the spell, she thought of her mostly happy, normal childhood. That wouldn't have been possible with demons coming after her all the time. Given her natural curiosity, combined with magical powers, who knew what trouble she might have gotten herself into at a young age? She might not have survived her childhood.
"It's okay, Daddy, really," Fi assured him. "Yeah, a part of me wishes that I did have my power all those years, but...for the most part I'm just grateful that you kept me safe. Thank you."
Overwhelmed with relief, he hugged her again. "Thank you, baby, for being such an amazing daughter. I love you so much."
"I love you too," Fi replied.
When they broke apart, Rick said, "Please also tell your mother how sorry I am that I kept this from her. That I'm sorry for all the times I made her worry, for...everything. And that I love her. Hopefully now that she has opened her eyes, I will be able to tell her on my own...but until then..."
"I'll tell her," Fi assured him. When she sensed that their time together was almost up, she quickly asked, "Daddy...am I going to be able to beat this thing?"
Confident, Rick nodded. "Knowing you, I'm sure you will."
Her mother's disembodied voice floated over them, and Fi knew that Molly must have been trying to wake her up. "I don't want to go," she pleaded.
"Don't worry, baby. We'll see each other again like this, I promise."
And then suddenly, he was moving away from her, the whole scene was. It was fading, faster and faster, until it all blurred together. "Daddy!" she called in panic. "Daddy!"
"Fiona, baby, wake up!"
The shock of coming back from her dream caused Fi to twist and turn in her bed, until her mother finally grabbed her shoulders and shook her. "Fiona!"
She was finally awake, her eyes open, her heart pounding. "Daddy..." Fiona whimpered, her hand over her heart in yearning.
"Oh, Fi, were you dreaming about your father again?" Molly asked, sympathy in her voice as she sat on the side of the bed, her arm around her daughter's shoulders. "When you first looked scared, I was afraid that maybe you might be having your first vision, then you started smiling in your sleep..."
After she'd caught her breath, Fi shook her head. "It was a vision, Mom. But I didn't see the future...I saw Daddy. I talked to him. He told me it wasn't a dream, that he could visit me because the spell was lifted. I really talked to him."
This is the part where her mother would usually insist it was a dream. But instead, she seemed genuinely surprised by the information, happy even. "I believe you, baby," she assured her. "I'm just...what did he say?"
"That he's sorry. For making you worry, and for the secrets he kept from you. And that he loves you," Fi informed her. She then studied her mother's reaction carefully, curious what it would be.
There was a soft, quick gasp, but then Molly seemed to freeze, her eyes wide. "No..." she whispered. "No. Next time you see him, if you do...please tell him that I'm so sorry I pushed him away...that I didn't even compromise after a while...that I was so stubborn."
Her mother had a faraway look on her face, and Fi wasn't sure if Molly was even talking to her anymore. It was just as well, because Fi's jaw had dropped in surprise. She'd always known that her parents had fought over the supernatural, but she hadn't realized it had been so bad. Fi was tempted to reassure her and say that her father was going to try and make contact, but she didn't want to get her mother's hopes up. Finally, she just nodded. "I will."
Before they started the long car ride home, Fi and her mother had their last meeting with Kathleen in the kitchen, while Jack and Colin squeezed in just one more game of pool. Fi and Molly were finishing up the story of what happened that morning over homemade Irish soda bread and tea. "...he told me about the Ora, how they attack good beings who fight against evil, basically," Fi was saying after they'd gotten past the more emotional aspects of the "dream." She then gave her grandmother a hopeful look. "Do you know anything about them?"
Her mouth still full of bread, Kathleen considered the question while she chewed. "The Ora...I've heard the name before. I think my mother mentioned them to me a few times during my training." She then frowned as the memory came to her. "As in, if she ever caught me fighting evil, she'd get me before the Ora could. Going after evil is very dangerous, and only the most powerful witches should attempt it."
"Then...how did Rick do it? He doesn't have any power..." Molly then paused, her mouth slightly open in shock. "Oh my God, he..."
But Kathleen shook her head. "I don't think so, love. While learning about the Ora, my mother also told me that occasionally, there would be gifted humans who could fight as well. Not gifted in the magical sense, but as in with intelligence, curiosity, and compassion for others, which would lead to their many triumphs against evil. Over the years, my mother and I concluded that Rick was one of these humans." She then gave them a sad frown. "And the Ora hates them with a passion. If Rick had not died in that car accident, I imagine an Ora demon would have gotten him."
Guilty, Fi kept quiet for a minute while she ate some soda bread. She was tempted to tell them the truth about the car accident, but...she just couldn't. Her mother was doing surprisingly well with her new acceptance. Fi just knew that this information would break Molly's heart, to the point of driving her back into her previous state of denial. So once again, Fi kept quiet about it and ate some of her bread while the other two talked.
Eager to get the subject off her husband's death, Molly replied, "So, now that we know what's after Fi...how do we fight it?"
"I...I'm not sure," Kathleen confessed, though her tone revealed she wished she could be more helpful. "They're not just any little demon you could vanquish with a spell. I'd imagine it would take both of you, maybe even me, and a powerful potion-spell combination. Or maybe there's an enchanted object it requires, I really wouldn't know. I'll talk to Nora about it though."
Anxious as she was reminded that a demon was out there who wanted her dead, Fi gulped down the last of her tea, its warmth something of a comfort. "Grandma...do you think it will attack again, soon? I mean, should I be keeping potions handy at all times?"
"I think you have time to prepare while he plots his next attack, if that's what you mean," Kathleen replied. When Fi became more nervous, Kathleen squeezed her hand. "You'll be fine, love. You have us behind you. And the rest of the O'Sianhan women. You can be assured, your father is not the only soul watching over you."
Their talk was ended when Jack and Colin entered from the hallway. "Victory is mine!" Colin exclaimed as he patted his grandson's shoulder. "I finally beat this boy!"
"Yeah, yeah. Look, it was our last game, you hadn't won all week, so I let you win," Jack insisted, but his argument sounded weak.
And Colin wasn't buying it. "Don't listen to him, the sore loser." He then glanced through the window at the car outside. "Do you need help getting your bags to the car?"
"Nope, all done, Da," Molly said as she got up from the table. "All that's left to do is say good-bye."
After Fi and Molly helped clear the table, and the group grabbed their jackets and made their way to the car. "Now, you all have a good trip." Kathleen handed Molly something wrapped in tin foil. "Here's the rest of the Irish soda bread in case you or the kids get hungry, and don't you dare make this drive all in one go. There are plenty of rest stops along the way."
"Love you too, Ma," Molly joked as she took the soda bread and kissed her mother's cheek. "I'll call you when we get home."
After she'd hugged her grandfather good-bye, she turned to her grandmother. "Bye, Grandma," she said as the two hugged. "I'll make sure to keep in touch."
"You better. I want to hear every detail, about everything," Kathleen replied, then hugged Fiona again. "And love, please be careful."
"I'll try," Fi assured her. They weren't empty words. While she may have been a little reckless in her past investigations, she knew that unlocking her magic, and having a powerful demon as an enemy, changed everything.
As her family got into the car, Fi reflected on how true that was. Up until then, any encounter with the paranormal was random and solved in the moment. But...but she couldn't treat it as a side interest anymore. The paranormal had become her life. She was part of it. And she needed to learn all she could so she would be able to protect herself and her family.
But she had also gained some information from this trip as well. Her grandmother had once been a powerful witch, and had passed that power on to her daughter and granddaughter. Amazingly enough, her mother was finally accepting magic.
And Fi would be able to see her father in her dreams.