Memories Of A Time Not Yet Happened
Disclaimer I do not own Tin Man
DG felt her heart pounding in her chest, she needed to get to Az, she needed her sister, together nothing and no one could get to them. Screams echoed in the city, and DG knew not only was the courtyard filled with long coats so was the city. She had lost Cain after he pushed her off the stage to save her from getting shot, she had lost Glitch and Raw too, her Father and Mother were safe with Jeb pushing them back towards the castle, though she could see someone had shot her dad in the shoulder, likely when he pushed mom out of the way.
"AZ!" she screamed.
Then she heard her sister calling her, and she turned, Glitch was fighting off six men, two in long-coat uniforms and the others seemed to be normal men off the street, then one caught him in the chin and he fell, she could see he had been fighting while covering Az. Az reached for her blasting the men aside, DG pushed forward, dodging two fighters, she wasn't sure if they were on her side or not, but it didn't matter she had to get to her sister to stop this madness. She pushed forward now only ten feet away she heard a shot, and it seemed to stand out above all others, and almost against her own will she turned and saw Cain falling on his back, blood poring from his eye, blue eye replaced by a black bloody hole in his face, and she saw the one who shot him was Zero, standing there a smug look on his face.
DG felt all the blood run from her face, her heart rate dropping to barely beating, another gun shot reached her, and she turned back to her sister, who was falling to the ground hand to her breast, almost as if she could stop the blood from leaving her body. DG felt her magic bubbling up in her, it wasn't flowing, it was building, a lot like the movement of a reseeding tide before a tsunami.
It exploded forward when she saw Glitch fall behind Az's kneeling body, a bloody slash in his throat.
She watched as if in slow motion as the men nearest her seemed to vanish vaporized, the ones further out just exploded, bones gone just bloody smears on the cobblestone, then a third gun shot reached her and she looked down to see blood start pouring from her own chest, just like Az's.
She fell even more slowly then Cain and Glitch, her knees didn't catch her like her sister's did, she just watched the cobblestone rise to met her face, blackness racing to her just as fast, and she just wondered which would hit her first. In the end it was a tie, she didn't see the cobblestone but she felt it, and she exhaled one last time...
DG sat bolt up right, hand flying to her chest. She felt light headed, and the ache in her chest was dying down. She pried her eyes open and found cheerful sunlight pouring in the windows of her attic room.
She stared about her room, she felt confused, logic was telling her it was just a dream, but... it felt so real, the parents downstairs had been robots, she had fallen in love with Cain... He had died... She realized she was crying... Over a dream man... she smiled, laughing a little, how silly of her, crying over the dream man. He wasn't real and by extension he couldn't have died.
She climbed out of bed, before feeling the deja vu, she looked to the clock, it read eleven a.m. She frowned in the dream she had dreamed her mother was calling to her from the other side and hadn't woken till eleven thirty. She shrugged, just proof it was a dream. She got dressed and set off to work making sure to drive slow even at the risk of being late, she didn't want that last ticket that Elmer was sure to have ready and waiting for her. She even waved down the blind alley that he was waiting down, she knew he had to wonder how she knew he was there because you couldn't see down it till you were almost past it, but the funny thing was that he was down it. Normally he had two other spots he used, that was one he didn't like to use because he always worried about pulling out after a speeder and hitting someone else that was coming down the road.
"You know maybe it isn't a good thing I know his reasons for using some spots over others." She just shrugged it off, giggling, at least today she wasn't going to get a ticket.
She changed and was amused that Carter was so surprised she was on time, his muttered he guessed he was wrong about Murphy today was a touch odd, but the more the day went on the odder it got, she knew what everyone, even people who she had never seen outside the dream she had had were going to order. And when she mention she felt odd to Grace she just nodded, "I know I've felt the same since I got here, I've known what everyone was going to order even when some of the regulars ordered something other then their regular."
She headed home at three thirty, Ellie coming in early to make up for her skipping the lunch rush, DG felt her skin crawl just a little when she drew the picture of her mother from her dream, and she then walked up behind her dad and he was swearing the exact same way at the exact same thing he had in her dream. Today had just been creepy. That was all there was to it.
So when he asked her if she had had her creepy cave dream again she lied, "Yeah popsicle," Feeling if she had had deja vu so much today she might as well chose to reenact part of it, the thing about Milltown had her skin crawling again, he couldn't be a robot... Could he?
"But there was a woman, with beautiful lavender eyes."
DG could have swore her hair was on end again, for only the dozenth time that day. "No, here I drew a picture of her." She passed it off to him and now that she was watching she thought she saw a tiny flicker of... something in his face, and she promptly felt afraid, her dream couldn't have been right... But. He had reacted to the picture... "You know her."
Her voice startled her but not as much as it did him, he fell over and then looked at her shocked, "How did you know?"
"I was watching your face. Who is she?"
"Deeg... Me and your... We'll tell you tomorrow."
She nodded, slowly, if they knew her, and she had had a dream of what was coming next they wouldn't be here tomorrow, but if that was the case she knew where the emerald was, and if it was just a dream at least she wouldn't be thought of as crazy. She got the wind mill going, and then wandered back to the porch and started to draw Cain, she didn't plan to but remembering his bravery in her dream, and remembering her feelings for him she couldn't stop her hands. Once finished she knew if the Long-Coats didn't come that night she was going to paint him.
"Well he is one handsome man."
She jumped realizing she had been staring at his face far longer then she should have, "You think?"
"Where did you meet him?"
DG smiled, feeling like she had when ever she got caught with her hand in the cookie jar, "In a dream, he probably isn't real."
"Oh now thats a shame." Her mother swept off, and DG found herself glad about one more thing she had avoided, the lecture about the ticket. She stood and slipped off to her room, her hands itched, she needed to do something, paint or... She grabbed her biggest sketch book, she sat down and grabbed her watercolor pencils, and let her hand go. She only stopped when popsicle slipped up to check on her, she noticed it was almost dinner time. He smiled and she remembered the talk he had tried to have with her after the fight. She stopped and put her pencils down, she felt funny because even if he and her mother were keeping things from her, even if they were robots they had done their best for her, maybe her dream had given her a greater appreciation for the simple life. No long coats, no assassins, no princess lessons, no bodyguards, no getting shot... She kept coming back to that.
Popsicle stood over her, and then his eyes drifted to her newest water color and his eyes went wide, he met her gaze, "Where did you see that?"
She looked down and frowned, oops, she had drawn Azkadellia's tower smoke rising, army gathering under it, in other words much darker then her drawings of times she almost remembered. "In a dream."
He nodded, eyes still wide, he walked away, and DG found herself unable to call after him, unable to bring herself to ask if her life till now was a lie. She stayed in her room voices drifting up to her from below, she went down to dinner and found it awkward and silent, she ate quickly almost scarfing it, if she was right and this was going down to night she wanted to be a bit more prepared.
Besides tonight might be the last night she got to eat like a pig, princesses after all wore dresses, and ate at long tables, with table manners and courses. She went around her room, it was almost eight and she had her pocket knife, she was wearing boots this time, not sneakers with no tread, she had a small bag with a change of clothes, and a better jacket. Feeling as ready as she could she stood watching out the window, waiting for the travel storm she feared was coming.
She paced back and forth in front of her window, should she go tell her parents or should she stand guard? After all the worst that she could be was crazy right? Then it came, the sky had been getting darker but the storm formed a funnel and it touched down not three hundred feet from the house, she blinked torn between panic and surprise, she was right, she had done this before. Then the thought of shouldn't it be louder? Came to mind. Then in a spilt bolt of lighting six Long-coats appeared and all thoughts of silly things stopped she raced down the stairs almost seeming to fly, she reached the bottom and screamed, "LONGCOATS!"
She heard a crash from the family room and her mother and father or robo-parents peered around the corner. She waved "Lets go!" she then took off up the stairs, hearing them follow.
Once they were all upstairs and behind the door that lead to the attic, she heard the door down stairs slam open, she put her fingers to her lips and waved them up the stairs, they walked up the stairs hearing them turn the downstairs upside down, she then grabbed a chair and put it under the doorknob, figuring that would slow them down longer. She met their curious eyes and said, "Not now, out on the roof we've got to get into the traveling storm."
They nodded and headed to the window, DG could hear footsteps coming up the stairs, she climbed out the window and looked for the storm, it was still a ways away. "Crap."
She couldn't jump off the roof, and the storm was too far, she looked back and saw Em and Hank behind her still confused, she stood on the edge of the roof, "Closer just a bit closer." She coaxed the storm, she thought she heard the Long-coats banging on the door, trying to break the chair, because even though the knob turned, the door was jammed closed. The storm crept close still and her parents watched confused by how she knew what she knew, DG felt like that moment after she had been shot, which was going to get her first the storm or the Long-coats? "Darkness or light?" she muttered under her breath.
The storm was ten feet away, and then she heard the her robo-mother yell 'their through!' DG looked back at them for a moment, and then charged off the roof into the storm, knowing they'd follow. The storm swirled her around, and she shut her eyes as tight as possible, but despite having left the house sooner then the last time something hit her in the head and she knew no more.
She woke up and realize she was in a different clearing then last time, she shoved the curtain off her, and scowled, once again Em and Hank were no where near her, and once again, it was the middle of the day, of course it seemed so much brighter then Kanas with the two suns. She stood and brushed herself off, she needed to get the seal thing from the Tic'toks, and she wanted to find Cain. Just thinking he was real made her heart flutter, and she scowled, he hadn't even met her yet, and here she was thinking about jumping him. It was going to be hard, she wasn't going to follow the same path or even be surprised by anything, and yet she was the only one who knew anything or everyone or... she rubbed her temples pacing in a small circle, this was a pain in the ass.
Then she got the feeling of being watched, she spun in a slow circle, and looked up, she didn't see anything but she hadn't last time either. "Red Hatt?" She turned again and found herself facing six munchkins, she sighed they had spears pointed at her, Red Hatt stared at her curiously. DG twitched, almost wishing she had her stick from last time.
"That is my name but how do you know it?"
She smiled ignoring the glares from the one with blue paint, "You told me it."
"No I didn't."
"Yes you did."
"No I didn't I have never seen you before."
"That is true but you told me it."
She decided to lie, "Because I am the lost princess Dorthy Gale."
The blue one jumped in, "You lying Spy!"
She scowled, "I am not lying! Or a spy!"
"You are too, everyone know the princess isn't lost but dead!"
She scowled, ignoring them trying to back her into the net she was sure was behind her, "I am not dead. It was a lie to protect me from Azkadellia."
Red Hatt stayed quiet but the blue one puffed up, "You lying spy from the sky!"
DG growled, "I am not!"
"You are so!"
DG stomped frustrated, and suddenly the blue guy plus Red Hatt were shrunk to about about four inches tall. The other four suddenly looked a lot more hostile, she giggled nervously. "oops. I'm not really good at controlling it."
The one with yellow paint that she had called Jack last time stepped forward looking her over, Blue guy was yelling something from the ground but he was so squeaky she couldn't tell what he had said, Red Hatt just seemed to be staring up at her in awe.
"You have magic, and I have seen the Sorceress. You are not her." Yellow guy spoke.
DG nodded slowly, "You are correct on both counts."
He nodded, seeming proud of his logic, "Then you must be the Princess Dorthy Gale."
She nodded not pointing out there could be others with magic, "I normally go by DG."
He nodded before bowing, "Princess DG."
She nodded back, then remembering where Glitch was she coughed, "You have an old advisor of the queen in your.. cells"
He frowned, "I know of no such man."
"He has a zipper in his head because of Azkadellia."
His eyes sharpened, "We do have a head case."
She nodded, "Would you bring him to me?"
Yellow guy nodded, "As you wish princess. But could you turn them back first?"
DG flinched, "I can try, but I am really not good with the magic bit yet, haven't really had lessons."
He nodded slowly, "You... um can fix them?"
DG nodded, "Eventually. If nothing else my spell will likely wear off."
He blinked and turn to the munchkin next to him, muttering something she didn't catch, she then remembered, "Oh Azkadellia's Longcoats are coming on horse back and they'll come ready to cut your trees down."
He looked at her with eyes like saucers, "How do you know this?"
She smiled nervously, "Um, magic?" Time travel didn't seem like something she should tell anyone... maybe she could break that rule for Cain and maybe Glitch because he likely would forget till he needed it but...
He nodded accepting it, she turn back to her two little midgets, or should she say digits? They were only four-ish inches tall, she closed her eyes, and pictured them growing. She tried to bring her light to the surface, she felt a little spark and opened her eyes to find they had grown but only two inches. "oops."
Red Hatt was looking at the blue one who was almost purple with his rage, and snickered. DG bit her lip, oops, "So um... Maybe if you two come with me I'll get it right."
"Where do you need to go?"
She looked back to the yellow guy, "Um... I have a mission... and I don't think I should tell you."
He looked at her, "It is to stop Azkadellia right?"
He nodded back in a sharp movement, "Then you are right not to tell me."
Then she heard a familiar complaint, "You little ankle biters! Let me go!"
She smiled a mix of affection and amusement, plus the tiniest tinge of relief, she wasn't crazy, she had friends and family worth fighting for. Glitch came into view a scowl on his face, zipper still undone, his klutzy self. She smiled as the two munchkins threw him towards her, he stumbled and almost fell at her feet, she reached out and steadied him, while he turned around to complain. "You don't need to be so rough!"
He turned to her cheery smile on his face, "Hello who are you?"
She smiled fondly, "I'm DG. And um..." she touched the top of her head and whispered, "Your zip's undone."
He blushed and mumbled an apology, she ignored him turning to the mini munchkins and his yellow self, "Can I get your name?"
"Yellow Face, your highness."
She smiled ignoring the look on Glitch's face, she gave a little bow, "Thank you for your help Yellow Face, I hope you get away."
He nodded, and bowed deeper before walking away, leaving her with the shrunken two. She looked down and realized there was no way they would keep up with her stride much less Cain's punishing pace. "Um do you two want to ride on my shoulder or hang on my bag?"
Glitch gave a little jump when he figured out who she was talking to.
Red Hatt answered, "Your shoulder your highness."
The blue guy huffed, and she frowned down at him while bending down, "Can you give me your name or shall I keep calling you blue guy?"
He scowled up at her, "MY NAME IS INDIGO!"
She snorted, "I should have guessed. She offered her hand to them and they scrambled on. She stood up and then let them off on her shoulder, "You two hold on to my hair but try not to pull, and Red Hatt don't call me highness I shrunk you, no need to be formal. DG is fine."
She turn to Glitch and his look of intense curiosity met her look and she winced, now was not the time for him to start asking things she want to find Cain and get a move on... Speaking of which how was she going to save Toto? She couldn't leave him with Azkadellia, and honestly she couldn't let the Mystic man die... "Grr," no easy answers came to mind but she needed to get moving. "So what is your name?" she asked even as her own mind answered with Ambrose and Glitch simultaneously.
His eyes went wide and he lost whatever train of thought he had been following, "Oh I'm Glitch, and I'm called that because some times my synapses don't fire right. Some times my synapses don't fire right."
She grinned and he broke off stopping himself from saying it a third time, "What?"
"You said that twice."
"Oh, see that's me glitching again."
"And you want this idiot because?" Indigo asked sounding disgusted.
She shot Indigo a look, "You really need to stop judging by appearances, you'll get further. Glitch can you help me get to central city?" She ignored the choking sounds from her shoulder.
He smiled, "Yeah I can get you there Doll."
She smiled, her heart warming at the familiar nickname, "Lead the way."
He grinned and took off, they had been walking for a couple of hours when Red Hatt grabbed the edge of her ear and whispered, "You know he's going in a circle?"
She smirked, and hissed back, "I know but he's taking me somewhere more important."
"Then why didn't you go straight there?"
"I don't know how to get there, so I figure I get lost and I'll find it."
She heard the little man sigh before sitting back down, she heard the Indigo huff, "She's crazy and a liar I told you."
She scowled, "I can set you down and leave you for the birds or to be stepped on if you want."
Red Hatt laughed and Indigo growled, but shut up. Glitch turned around, "Did you say something?"
DG shook her head, "Nope."
They walked for another half an hour when Glitch tripped in the middle of talking about how he was sure he was important before he lost his brain. DG felt her heart leap to her throat, because she knew what him tripping over that log meant, she, no they were near Cain. Irrational thoughts like 'what if he didn't like her?' Leapt to the forefront of her mind but she pushed them away. She, if nothing else, could free him.
She stopped and listened for the faint screams she knew she would be able to hear, Glitch got to his feet, and then realized she had stopped, "Something wrong Doll?"
"Did you hear that?" She asked, hearing the echo of Cain's screams from two hills over.
Glitch frowned walking back, "Not really..."
She waited and then jumped at the even louder yell, the video was at a different part of it's cycle, she was here earlier.
"That I heard."
"Hold on." And she took off running, smirking at the little yelps coming from her shoulder, a little revenge was nice, even if Red Hatt was decent.
She quickly crested the hill over looking Cain's farmstead, she was surprised, it clearly had just restarted, Zero stood by while Cain held his knee pressing down on what looked like a stab wound, no wonder he couldn't get up to help Jeb or Adora, his leg couldn't hold him, his hammer lay on the anvil, and something faintly red lay on the ground, they had grabbed him while he was working.
DG felt a surge of hate for Zero, if it was him standing there she would be wishing for a gun. She gritted her teeth watching two flunkies grab Cain's arms while a third started beating him, never mind he couldn't even stand. Cowards. Though from what she remembered they had some very good reasons to be cheating.
"Doll you can't just run off." Glitch said, panting, having finally caught up to her. He then saw what she watching, Cain's face was now bleeding and it was about to the point where she had first seen it, just as a very young Jeb came running out trying to help his Mother and Father, always a fighter.
She didn't wait for Zero to knock him to the ground she took off run stick in hand, she noted it was the exact same stick she had used last time. She swung straight for Zero's mocking face, she dropped her stick as the image faded away, she went to the camera and looked at. Last time she had been too confused by why it was there to really look at it, it looked like an old camera mixed with some bad syfy-steampunk type movie. She smiled, that did sum up her life rather well.
Especially with Az's evil witch clothes.
"Wow thats a A.T.D.E.S.P.H.T.L." Glitch looked to her before going on, "Uh... A Tri-Dimensional Energy-Stored Projected Holographic Time Loop. Nifty little thing."
She looked up at Glitch before asking the obvious, "Why have it playing if no one's watching?"
She turned and saw Cain's tin suit, she felt her heart break just a little knowing how he'd come out, mixed up and furious. And bitter. She couldn't forget that. She went over and grabbed the little hammer, walking over she peaked in and saw his crazed blue eyes, startling with his rust covered skin. "Theres someone in there."
Glitch peered in only to jump back frightened, "Um are you sure it's not something?"
DG dropped her bag on the ground and set Indigo and Red Hatt down with it, then she leaned over and loosened the two tiny nails holding... no trapping Cain in the tin suit, tiny things for such a great evil. Once free it swung open and DG cringed back just a little, Cain was no spring flower at the moment, sweat and a metallic rusty smell emerged with her knight in tin. Glitch pulled her with him as he took a few steps back as Cain fell out muscles stiff with disuse.
Two hours later Cain was back to looking how she remembered if a touch more unhappy, then he had more time in her memories of right before she died, he had been very relaxed compared to this wound up tight as a spring Cain. But only comparatively.
DG figured she best comment on the obvious or they might start to wonder why she stayed quiet then but got louder as things changed, or at least as she hoped things changed. "So he just had to stand there and watch them while his family got tortured over and over again?"
Even as she half listened to Glitch's answer she felt her admiration for Cain soar, it or at least she didn't remember it hitting her so hard that Cain had been in the suit for twelve or more years and he had come out so sane. By all rights he should have been foaming at the mouth not cold, hard with hatred. She watched him walk to the side of his cabin, smiling at his cool "Much obliged for the help."
She spoke quickly wanting his help, they couldn't do this without him, "You're welcome mister Cain. I'm DG and this is..."
"I know, a headcase."
Glitch spoke Cain ruffling his feathers as always, "I do have a proper name you know."
She watched seeing the cold determination in Cain's movements, she looked back at Glitch guilt bubbling under her skin at his half muttered continuation of his complaint; "And when I remember it, I will tell you."
"What's a headcase?"
"It's what the state does to re-educate criminals. They rip out their brains, making them prisoners of their own minds."
DG shivered, death seemed kinder some how, she looked to Glitch and he looked upset, and angry and she knew he had good reason, but she also knew Cain had a point. Then Cain rubbed it in a little too deep and she winced, as Glitch strode forward and demanded Cain stop calling him that. Then Cain said the magic words, "I'll see you down the road."
She half skipped forward, "Actually a road is what we're looking for. We're looking for the brick route..."
Glitch echoed her falsely unsure words.
"Leading to Central City..."
"Do you know of it?"
Cain scowled down at the ground, and she now could see the indecision on his face, and with her old memories she knew his sense of honor was telling him he should take them. "Yeah. It's where Zero was headed after..."
His face already cold almost seemed to turn to stone, DG kept her mouth shut she couldn't tell him now that Jeb was still alive, he would freak and likely leave her behind.
"That's where I'm headed now.
She grinned not faking her feelings this time, "Great we'll go with you!"
"I got business. Besides I don't travel with kids, or convicts."
DG couldn't deny the sting of the hated nickname, but she brushed it off. "I am not a kid and the same people who came to your home came to mine, I'm just looking for my parents." and sister she silently added.
"And I'm looking for my brain."
DG went on knowing she would be pushing Cain in to a painful place, but she needed him. "And maybe we can help you find..."
He spun to face her, eyes flashing and face hard as stone, pain written into his face and body, "And what? Find what? Maybe you can help me find my wife? my boy? Not happening, he and my wife are gone and I am never getting them back."
He took two more steps away before looking back and adding, "Just like your forks most likely are."
DG stopped and huffed, "Fine. You want the world to have ended, fine it's over." She stomped back to her backpack hosting it over her shoulder and then giving Indigo and Red Hatt a hand up, she then stomped past him and Glitch ignoring the looks of amazement. Screw doing things the same way as last time, she wanted to change things, change them she would. Besides she was sure to run into him again if he didn't give in travel with her, he after all was after Zero... If she didn't kill him first, she wanted to put a magic lighting bolt through his chest for killing past Cain, and leading the riot that killed her, Glitch and Az.
She got maybe six feet past Cain when she heard Glitch start following her, and then ten feet from where they left Cain he spoke up, "The way goes through the fields of the Pa-pay."
DG bit back a grin at Glitch's shaky voice, he had a good reason to be afraid even if she hadn't felt more then respect for the creature's since she and Az fixed the fields. She waved an arm wildly, make sure to keep her other level, didn't want to drop the two after all, "What are Pa-pay? They can't be any worse then Longcoats or tornados."
Cain spoke still not looking at her, "I've seen them gnaw a man in half in side thirty seconds."
She made sure her face stayed skeptical, he glanced at her and could clearly see she wasn't gong to listen to him, she almost grinned when he gave a low groan.
"Fine, kid stay close to me, Zipperhead keep your mouth shut." Cain set off, and this time she didn't question his motives. She grinned at Glitch and they set off for the brick route, it had been quiet for a minute or two when Red Hatt whispered in her ear, "You know this man. And you knew he'd react like that. How do you know him and where did you meet him if you've been in hiding for the last twenty-five years?"
She winced, she forgot the munchkin's knew she was looking for Cain when she let Glitch lead her around, she glanced at Glitch he was humming to himself seeming to have forgotten about the Pa-pay for now, Cain was leading them by ten feet or so, she whispered "Magic I think, this morning or yesterday morning I woke and I had done this before. I knew what was going to happen before it happened." Then she realized he said Twenty-five years... Oh right the time difference, she had forgotten.
"That's how you knew my name."
"Yep and I lied about why you told me it, when you met me, you and I didn't know I was princess, my memories are sealed."
She heard the confusion in the munchkin's voice, "Then how do you know?"
"My memories are sealed, but that means nothing if I remember a time where I remembered then."
Indigo spoke, "See she is a liar."
DG grabbed him by his feathered... thing and held him in front of her face shaking him a little, "You will stop that! I am not a liar! And I am not a Spy! You will be nicer to me or so help me you'll be this way forever!"
Indigo looked sufficiently cowed but she noticed Cain and Glitch had stopped and were staring, and from the look on Cain's face it was clear he hadn't seen them before, she felt a nervous laugh rising in her throat, she looked to Glitch. It was clear he had forgotten about them, but now was remembering...
She just hoped he didn't remember the highness bit.
"They said you shrunk them..." Glitch stated sounding confused.
She flushed, still embarrassed she had lost her temper, "Yeah, surprise! I can do magic... I'm just not very good at it."
Cain stared, eyes hard, she flushed harder, she didn't like not telling him, but she didn't want to drive him off. "You're a witch."
She jumped a little, and then shuffled her feet, "I guess I am, I'm just am not used to this, they didn't have magic on the other side."
He nodded, and slowly turned around and started walking, Glitch however walked over and started talking about the little he knew about magic. She put Indigo back on her shoulder, and followed behind Cain, only half listening to Glitch.
"We found the wreckage from the house that the Other siders lived in, and we caught an east guild member who told us there was a girl, a little more then twenty annuals who warned them we were coming."
Azkadellia nodded walking slowly over to the low table, "Why a little girl?" her voice was low enough that she seemed to be thinking aloud, "Any sign of where she was headed?"
"She and the man she had them hand over seemed to be headed towards the Old Brick Route."
Azkadellia nodded, "Find her."
She walked quickly from the room leaving him to send out the orders.
DG leaned over Cain's shoulder just a little, he was looking at a scuff mark she was going to take his word as her robo-dad's foot prints. "That's my Dad he might have been shot by a long-coat."
She walked a little ways ahead wishing just a little they had looked for her rather then running off ahead.
"Hey, kiddo. A little heads up before you lose yours runners hate water. Probably why they smell so bad. So keep your noses peeled. When it's time to run you'll know."
DG ignored Glitch's paranoid comment she focused on Cain, "Stop calling me Kid, I'm Twenty-Four."
He looked at her and raised an eyebrow, mocking her without saying a word, he walked past her and she huffed, he was so frustrating calling her kid, she liked princess only a little better. Why couldn't he just call her by DG?
Half an hour later she heard the hissing she knew was the meat tenderizer the runners used on their prey, so she knew Raw was near. "What's that?" she acted like she was going to touch even as she was careful not to lean too far over for fear of dislodging her riders.
Cain was on his toes, having already noticed her tendency to touch first. "ah don't touch that. That's a pre-digestive enzyme the Pa-pay runners use to tenderize their meat."
DG looked for the net-nest thing Raw would be in, of course this time she wasn't going to let Cain get bit she had her own knife.
"Come on, lets go."
She saw the net thing and walked over seeing Raw squirm inside, "There's someone in there." Raw's moans punctuating her statement, she started digging in her pocket. Thank god this time she had some warning and was ready.
"An advance hunter party must have snared it. We had better get out of here before their friends come back."
She looked up at him already crouching down knife out, "I can't just leave him here."
"You snatch a dinner from a Runner, you'd best be prepared to replace it."
She grinned a touch mischievously, he hadn't noticed the knife, super Tin Man her ass. She drew the blade up opening a slit for Raw to crawl out of, she stepped back ready for Cain's over reaction, plus she knew Raw be upset.
Raw didn't disappoint, his scream almost as loud as the one he had given in the prison after Lylo died, Cain got fed up and told him to lose the attitude. DG heard slash felt the Runner coming, she turned noticing the others had seen her reacting, but she wasn't fast enough to get out of the way. The runner bit down on her leg holding her, she couldn't hold back the scream as she fell, Indigo fell grabbing her hair to stop from falling off and Red Hatt was swearing in her ear as he tied her hair around him like a belt.
Cain was fast though, he shot it, and she kicked it off, and with Glitch's help she was on her feet in a second, Glitch and Cain both grabbed an arm and practically tried to carry her between the two but feeling her magic flaring she yelled "Stop!"
All of them, even frightened Raw stopped, and DG felt something like a bubble expand around them, she grinned, as the first Pa-pay bounced off, she shoved Cain's arm down, she didn't want to test if her shield would hold the bullet in, besides if her magic was so available she should use it for good. "I'm sorry," she said to the Pa-pay, "But you can't eat me or my friends."
Pushing off Cain she staggered to the nearest tree the moment her hand touched it, it came to life, shoving off it she went to the next tree, and then the next and the next, she staggered to the last tree she thought she could heal and grinned up into the leaves as the lunch pail tree came to life. She turned and found Raw, Cain and Glitch staring at her stunned, Cain's mouth was even hanging open.
She smiled, he never looked that stunned last time, "They'll let us go now."
Cain nodded dumbly, she grinned weaker this time, "A little help, I'm really tired."
"That was one hell of a defense, kid," Cain muttered as he took her arm and lifted her helping her walk, she looked back and saw the two dozen Pa-pay's bowing to their backs, and she grinned letting her head fall against Cain's shoulder, glad the Munchkin's were on her other shoulder.
The moment they were out of the woods Cain and Glitch lowered her down on a log. Raw stayed far away while the two men built a fire for the coming night, Raw crept closer and closer the moment he thought she wasn't looking. Finally he was but a foot away and she looked at him straight in the face, his face was creased with curiosity, and a little fear. She couldn't blame him, no magic had brought him good before. She smiled, "I'm DG what's your name?"
"R..Ra..Raw." He reached out his hand trembling, and touched her knee, she was surprised, viewers didn't like to touch anyone, and they almost never touched a stranger willingly. Then he looked up at her, "But you knew Raw..."
She flinched, he could tell that much hun? His eyes went wider, and he leaned forward till his face was only inches away, she blinked he had never done this before. Cain and Glitch came back Cain drew his gun, but she waved him off, not looking away from Raw, even though she wanted to look at him to see the concern on his face. Then just when they seemed like saucers, Raw pulled his hand away, then he sat at her feet and pushed her over so he could get to the back of her leg, Cain and Glitch both started forward but she knew what Raw was doing and glared at the two men stopping them in their tracks.
She clenched her jaw feeling the hot hurt that came with Viewer healings.
Both the men peered at her leg when Raw pulled away, Raw smiled at her, and she smiled back, "Will you come with us Raw?"
He nodded, and she smiled, the other two only sighed.
"She's in the east looking for... She's looking for Family. Her friends around her, she is content, but she wants her family."
"Who is she Lylo?"
"Lylo can't see..."
Pictures came up, flashes before settling on a girl, limping, clearly hurt going about in the Pa-pay fields touching trees, and the trees came to life under her hands. The people stood near her but Lylo wasn't focused on them.
The viewer whimpered, "Lylo can't see more, can't not know not yet."
"Soon. Soon she show more."
DG stretched, glad Raw was coming, and even more glad she had healed the trees and saved Cain from getting bit, that hurt. She ate her granola bar, watching Glitch twitch in his sleep, Raw was awake and nibbling on the bar she had given him, she hoped he wasn't allergic to anything, but she wasn't sure where Cain was, he wasn't there but his coat was here so he clearly meant to come back. Indigo was sleeping but Red Hatt seemed to be having a staring contest with Raw, or at least neither of them were blinking.
Cain came back through some underbrush and seemed surprised to see so many up, he came over and sat next to her, "I found your parent's trail running towards the west."
She nodded the knowledge she hadn't changed that bringing a smile to her face, "Good."
He looked at her, "That was some fancy Magic, are you sure you have no training?"
She smirked practice yes but training no, being told let the light flow wasn't good training, "Yeah I'm sure, I can't control it or those two wouldn't be here. She pointed at Indigo and Red Hatt, Red Hatt didn't look away from Raw but Indigo sat up like she had hit him. He glared up at her, "You were thinking mean thoughts weren't you?"
"Only how sad it was I hadn't fixed you yet."
He glared harder before stretching and standing and hopping off the log going in a patch of grass, she could guess what he was doing and so looked back at Cain, he seemed oddly disturbed by them being even smaller then normal.
"Why would you bring them along?" he blurted.
"Because I felt bad."
He raised an eyebrow.
"Okay I felt bad I shrunk Red Hatt, Indigo had it coming."
He snorted before standing and grabbing his Jacket off his log, he nudged Glitch with his foot, "Get moving Zipperhead."
Glitch practically jumped he was so startled, DG giggled he hadn't done that before... while she hadn't been awake before him so maybe he had. She let Glitch get his jacket on before she threw him a granola bar, she then tossed one at Cain he caught it and so did Glitch, Glitch just almost dropped it first. They looked at her, identical looks of confusion. "Tear the wrapper open, it's pretty good if I say so myself."
Indigo climbed up next to her and cleared his throat, she pretended to just see him, "Oh would you like some?"
He stared before nodded his scowl fading away, she broke the corner off her second bar of the morning and then gave it to him, before passing another piece to Red Hatt, he ate still staring at Raw. She was starting to wonder if Red Hatt wasn't trying to get Raw to tell him what he had seen in her. But it didn't matter they need to get a move on, she stood "Indigo, Red Hatt ready to go?"
Raw answered for them, "Raw carry mini munchkins."
She didn't know what to make of it so left it alone, bag over her shoulder, she waved indicating for Cain to lead them to the road, "Lead the way Mister Cain."
He gave a short nodded and set off, two hours later they were to the point where Glitch was complaining about not getting a break. She felt fine, a touch thirsty but that was what she got for not bringing a water bottle, she was just lucky Cain had found a spot with a small spring to camp at, or eating her breakfast of granola bars would have been miserable.
She gave in, she just wanted Glitch to stop whining, "Cain we could all use a break."
He gave her a look that was almost a glare, but gave in, then she saw the mile marker thing up ahead, she took off running glad the munchkin's were with Raw, Cain ran after her and the others caught up quickly, she stopped and bent down running her fingers over the mark for Central City. If she trusted her acting skills a little more she would have tried the same thing about how she knew it, but she didn't. "Wow..."
"What?" Cain asked sounding annoyed.
"This is the mile marker I saw in my dream... Which means..." She took off running for Milltown which was but half a mile up the road, she could get a drink! She didn't stopped to read the sign she went straight into town, "Mom! Popsicle! I'm here!"
Robots came pouring out of the houses looking hostile, and angry, Cain and the others were a ways back and then walked slowly up behind her trying to make themselves less threatening, "This is all a little misunderstanding." Cain said.
She shot him a glance startled, he had never tried to peacefully approach before. But since he was trying she might as well try too, it wasn't like Em and Hank weren't going to step out and save them soon. "Yeah, my parents are from here, and they should be here now, I just need to talk to them."
Before she got any further Father Vue can out staring at her oddly, "You girl, what is your name?"
"Your voice patterns are familiar."
"Hey baby girl don't worry about him he's just a crazy old cyborg."
She grinned and run forward hugging him and Em, "I was so worried."
They hugged her back but seemed to notice she wasn't asking questions, so they rather tactfully said, "We need to have talk that we promised you."
She nodded seriously, she didn't know if Zero would show up or not. "Your right, and we don't have much time. But first some water would be really nice."
She got her cup of water and with Father Vue's okay Cain, Raw, Indigo, Red Hatt, and Glitch all got to come inside too. Then she and her robo-parents slipped off, she met their worried gazes and her dad started, "Deeg what's going on? You knew about the Longcoats and the travel storm and your not surprised we're here."
She winced, "I know you're robots, or Tic'toks. But how I know I'm not sure I can explain... The dreams I've been having... You know how they were supposed to be Lavender calling to me? Well that last dream, I dreamed of this. Everything, even the Eclipse. I know all about the Emerald and my sister and who I am here. I was so freaked out I couldn't ask, so I waited to see if the travel storm would happen and when it did I knew it was all true. Everything. I know what I have to do."
But of them nodded slowly freaked by the thought of she had seen the future, the her mom broke it, "So I noticed you have mister dreamy with you..."
DG blushed and laughed, and then blushed harder, there wasn't much she could say to that without digging herself a hole. To save herself some teasing she stood from the ground she had been sitting on, "I'm going to go get my present from Father Vue. You guys after I'm gone, need to hide, I don't want Azkadellia to find out what I've just told you."
"But we wouldn't tell her anything..."
She shot her dad a look, "Not willingly no, but you are Robots and there are ways."
They both nodded trusting her knowledge of the future.
She went back inside and listened to Father Vue tell her about what her Mother had done so many years ago, then she held her hand out so he could give her the mark, she may already be able to use some magic but it was very wild and she couldn't trust it. When Father Vue finished telling her about the man with the answers, she gave her robo-parents one last hug, and slipped back into the other room. She quickly found Cain, Glitch, Raw, Indigo and Red Hatt. Red Hatt and Indigo seemed to be entertaining Glitch and Raw by wrestling while Cain kept watch, out the windows, she grinned feeling the ache of leaving her childhood family behind, "Lets go."
They all looked to her, DG grinned, "Come on Zero and the man with all the answers wait for us in Central City."
Zero was all Cain needed to hear he was walking to the door before Glitch and Raw had even stood up. Glitch however wanted to know more before they set off, "Man with all the answers?"
She grinned, "Yeah he's called the Mystic Man."
Cain stopped and turned towards her, "The Mystic man?"
She nodded, "Yep, do you know him?"
"Yeah used to work his protection detail."
Now Glitch was confused by him, "Why were you a body guard or something?"
Cain almost seemed to roll his eyes before hiding beneath his hat, "I was a Tin Man zipperhead."
Glitch reacted just as strongly as last time, "A Tin Man? I should have known. Your bad attitude..."
She almost grinned but remembered what she needed to ask, "What's a Tin Man?"
"A cop in Central City."
She nodded and stepped out the door after Cain.
Oddly enough not seeing Zero meant, Cain gave in when they asked for breaks or went slower, he didn't push them so hard, knowing that made her feel silly, she had grumbled at him once or twice in her head last time, but he had just been worried about their safety. They stopped for the night in the woods over looking Central City, in the dusk it had looked like the shining city on the hill but she knew it wouldn't be so impressive when they got up close, tarnished, and filthy, and swarming with Long-coats.
She sighed and lay down, she would need to be rested because in all likely hood, tomorrow would start the running, if she didn't get captured tomorrow, she would go straight for her Father in the Realm of the Unwanted, she didn't want Cain and the others to be the ones to take her to the tomb in case Azkadellia was waiting, she didn't want to know what Azkadellia would do to them just to hurt her.
She curled up her extra jacket her pillow, but tonight was nipper then she remembered, she sure she was going to start shivering when Raw curled up next to her, his back to hers, and she remembered why it hadn't been cold. "Thank you Raw."
"Focus Lylo." Azkadellia paced, worried by how little they knew of this girl, she had magic and was light, but more then that they had no clue. She and her little friends had slipped passed Zero when he went to catch them before they got close to the city, if only she had a name.
"Lylo trying..." the viewer gasped his head tilting back his mouth falling open and he started to show them what he was seeing.
The girl lay on the ground and looked cold, then one of her friends lay down next to her, trying to share warmth, the girl thanked him and she was going to say it was useless when the viewer answered her with her name. "DG."
"Get a shovel," she snapped.
Three hours later in the dead of night, the casket was revealed and when opened, empty.
DG woke and had her granola bar, Cain was gone again, and Glitch was awake this time, Raw was still asleep, as were Red Hatt and Indigo. She hoped Demilo would still show up this morning and not have gotten there last night, and just as she hoped that she hadn't changed when he showed up, she hoped there wasn't any posters of her up yet.
Even if there wasn't any posters of her up, Cain couldn't get in and Glitch and Raw would get a lot of looks, Demilo was their best bet. She was startled when Cain's hand landed on her shoulder she knew it was him because of the shadow over her, but she still jumped, feeling the blush stain her cheeks she looked up at him, "Good morning. Shall we be off?"
He frowned but she couldn't tell why, then he nodded, "Yep I don't know where the Mystic Man might be in the city though."
She nodded and stood brushing her jeans off, Cain went and nudged Raw, Raw shot up and then blinked about confused, the two mini munchkin's were startled awake when Raw bumped the log; Red Hatt was on his feet before his eyes were open and Indigo fell off the log.
She giggled and the sideways view she had of Cain's face showed he might be smirking, Glitch just laughed, both Munchkin's shot them glares, though Indigo's was bit delayed he had to climb back on the log before they could see him. They quickly climbed on Raw, and the six of them set off, they quickly came down that last hill to the city entrance and found it as guarded as they had the first time, she sighed in relief when there wasn't a poster of her waiting for them on the board. Cain set off to see if there was a another way to sneak in, he came back an hour later and said they might be able to sneak in by dark, but even then it might be risky. He was about to say more when a familiar strain of music reached her ears, and his. He turned disbelief on his face, she let her tiny smirk out, the Munchkin's who had been watching her closely saw it and seemed to ready themselves, but she just sat back and let Cain have his fun.
Cain stopped Demilo's trunk and fingered some of the more ridiculous hood decorations, she bit back a wider smirk at Demilo's mother's honk on the horn.
"Hey, you with the stupid hat! Move it will you I've got commerce to commence here!"
Cain let Demilo dig his grave before showing him his face, the surprise on Demilo's face had to be funny to Cain or he wouldn't have made it so dramatic, it made her wonder just a little about the relationship between the two, Demilo hadn't seemed to mind Cain roughing him up. He almost seemed amused by it in the last time.
"Wyatt Freakin' Cain. Heh. I thought they were pissin' on your grave."
Not to mention while there was a touch of fearful respect in his tone, there was some relief in it to, like Demilo was glad he was wrong.
"I see you're moving up in the world. How's the sleaze business Demilo?"
The fearful curious looks he was giving the rest of them as they followed Cain around were interesting, was he afraid because he didn't know them? Or because he knew Cain was going to get him into trouble?
"Well since you've been gone, buz is booming. So, you know. If you don't mind, I'm working here a'ight?"
Cain then grabbed Demilo's shirt front and hulled him out slamming the door and then Demilo into the closed door. Part of her disapproved but, hey what worked worked right? Besides Demilo looked more resigned and pained then upset.
"So am I."
"Hey you're not sportin tin no more, so leave go me before I call the nice Longcoats over there and request they bloody your personage!"
Cain pushed Demilo back hand around his throat, Demilo let out an unmanly squeak, and Cain leaned closer and added his own little threat, "Who needs tin when you have a picture of a certain little man playing bed sheet bingo with Zero's first wife?"
She bit back a smirk as Demilo's two women rolled up the side and leaned out looking very interested in what was being said.
That part was actually fearful, but the you're going to kill me aren't you sort?
"Come on Cain. Me and Mrs. Z we... we was just joking around."
Cain pushed him back getting another squeak, "Oh really? Why don't I go ask Zero if he thinks it's funny?"
That time Demilo grabbed his hand put it back around his throat a little yelp escaping, "Whoa! Please have a heart. That guy'll flay me like a munchkin!"
Cain finally got to the point, "He won't have to if you get us inside, and tell me where I can find Zero."
"What are you gunning for Zero for? That's a short hop to a deep grave."
"You don't know the half of it." Cain's ghosts echoed in that statement. "Are you going to help us?"
That time Demilo sounded like he didn't really mean it at all, that was just him trying to get something out of it.
"Okay," Demilo looked startled till Cain grabbed his ears, then he just started screaming, "OOH! OKAY! Tonight's his weekly shack-up. AHH! OHH! AH! OHH!"
Demilo's screams turned to sighs of relief the moment Cain let go, "That was easy, wasn't it?"
"Oh, God, I hate Tin Men, especially ex-Tin Men."
DG frowned, she hadn't caught that before, or at least she didn't remember having caught that, but now she wondered, did the Ex-Tin Men turned Resistance use Demilo? She wanted to ask but she wasn't suppose to know about the Resistance yet.
"Get your mutts in the wagon." Cain shoved Demilo out of the way before opening the door for her, Glitch held out his arm indicating she should go first, something of a hold over from being in court, she'd guess.
Even as they drove through the gates she had to wonder what Demilo was to get a straight wave through. Once clear Demilo said, "Okay we're in."
She sat up amused a little by Raw and Glitch gasping for breath from where they had been hidden under Demilo's girls, the munchkins peered about from behind the stove where Raw had hidden them. "Okay, where can we find the Mystic Man?"
"Excuse me, is there a sign on my back 'Central City Taxi and Tourist Information'?"
Before she could smirk at the sarcastic reply Cain had grabbed his shirt and and stood him up threat clear.
"Oh, ow. All right. All right."
He looked at them a touch of nasty amusement gleaming in his eyes, "So the Mystic Man that's who you come here for?"
"Is he still here in Central City?"
The gleam got brighter, "Oh he's here all right. He's just not holding court where he used to."
Apparently Cain saw the gleam too, he lifted Demilo up banging his head on the ceiling of the van.
"Ahh! Ohh! Okay!" He fell on the pillows lining the bottom of the car, he pulled the tickets out and waved them like a flag, "These'll get you front row seats. All right?"
Even if he was facing her his eyes were looking back at Cain.
She reached out to take them but he pulled them away, "You can't go dressed like that, Cupcake." she barely stopped her eyes from rolling, if she hadn't heard worse on the other side she might have been temped to hit him, as it was he was such a womanizer it was a miracle someone hadn't shot him yet.
"Maybe my girls can find you something." he winked.
That time she did roll her eyes, but Cain saved her as usual, he grabbed the back of Demilo's coat and pulled him away, "Then find her something."
He dropped Demilo back and then started checking his gun, and her heart started pounding, if she was going to get the Mystic man to leave she would need Cain, meaning he couldn't go chasing places Zero wouldn't be, "Now look, The Mystic Man will have your answers. You don't need me anymore."
She took a deep breath, "Cain Zero won't be there."
He looked up at her, eyes narrow with suspicion, "And how would you know kid?"
She smiled mysteriously, "Cain Zero is going to be hunting me down, he won't have time for his romp tonight."
He leaned forward, eyes cool, "I ask again Kid how do you know?"
"By now Azkadellia likely about knows me, meaning I am first priority..." She remembered the Emerald, "Well maybe second. But Zero will be after me, and as far for how I know? I can't say here." She let her eyes flick to the avidly listening Demilo.
He scowled, but his eyes searched hers, what he was looking for she didn't know, but she knew she just had to be right or Cain was going to drop her like a hot potato. And then she likely was going to die.
"Kid if your wrong..."
"I won't be."
"Lylo all I need is what she wants, what is she looking for?"
The viewer jerked with the jab of the electric prod, he cried out but found what he was looking for, "She wants answers. She wants the man with answers!"
"My gods. The little bitch has gone to see the Wizard. Send Zero to lay in wait, catch them when they get there."
DG grinned, it had been a close call but she had Cain with them this time, no wild goose chase for him this time. She had gone a little dressy for him, and skipped the red, she hadn't known why she hadn't liked red before, but now she did and she had to say it was a very good reason. So she had worn the slutty dress she had turned down last time, blue almost navy, and a plunging neckline with a flapper type skirt, oddly enough very easy to run in, she had to check that first before she agreed to wear it, no good getting caught because she tried to impress Cain. She twisted her hair up and went a touch heavy on the makeup hoping to buy herself some time, because if Az knew who she was, she was sure to have some sort of picture of her. And some people in poor lighting wouldn't identify her.
Sadly she wasn't sure the dress idea had worked, Cain had just looked and then nodded, and they walked to the nightclub the Mystic Man was in, but when they got to the front door she had a feeling, the someone just walked over your grave type feeling. She stopped not taking a step further, the only reason she could think of to be feeling this way was Zero was already here. Waiting.
She chewed her lip while the others noticed she wasn't with them. They hurried back, "What is it DG?" Glitch and Cain asked at the same time.
Raw shivered leaning away from her almost dislodging the munchkin's inside his hood, but he answered for her, "DG feel badness. DG knows we can't go in."
Glitch looked at Raw confused while Cain looked at her, "What does he mean Kid?"
She sighed, again with the nickname, "Zero is inside, I thought he'd be here later, but he's waiting for us. I would say we leave but I can't let Azkadellia get her hands on the Mystic Man."
"Kid she's been able to get her hands on him for years."
She glared at Cain, "But she didn't know he knew anything but now that I'm here... And looking for him... she does."
His eyes were hiding in the shadow of his hat but she knew he was giving her suspicious eyes again. "You keep saying things like that, and one might start to think you're important."
She smiled, "I'll tell you after we've snuck the Mystic Man out after his show, there will likely only be two to four men guarding him back there, Zero's waiting for us to come in the front door."
Glitch and Cain looked to her and then others before nodding, they went around the side, sneaking in the back door to the rooms. They took out the two long-coats dropping them in the alley. The desk man didn't ask any questions when Cain flashed his gun, he just let them go down the hall to the Mystic Man's room, he wasn't there he was already out on stage, but Cain looked puzzled by the some what cluttered and messy room, "Cain is something wrong?"
"Yeah the Mystic Man was never so messy when I knew him, he always wanted things neat."
She nodded, knowing about the state the Mystic Man had been in for god knows how long, the vapors were cruel, and maybe that was part of why the riots had happened, her mother had just cut the people off, no weaning them off, just straight cold turkey... no wonder there had been so many in plainclothes, she could have likely killed over that too, many druggies do. Something to avoid after I've saved my sister. She said to herself.
Then the Mystic Man opened the door. He stopped and looked at them, his hands twitched, and his clothes weren't as nice as they looked under the stage lights, his eyes were blood shot too. He slid in shutting the door behind him, he was clearly having one of his more lucid moments. "You're who Zero is here for."
She nodded stepping forward, "We need to get you out of here."
He blinked confused, "But I have to stay."
She shook her head, "No you don't, I'm who you've been waiting for."
He blinked, and his hands started moving uncontrollably, fisting in his clothes, "Who have I been waiting for?"
"Me." She said even though she knew it would do no good.
He blinked, "Who is me?"
He blinked and she could see the war of the vapors and his brilliant mind, but the vapors were winning. She remembered what had pushed him over the edge last time, she held out her hand, the marked hand. He gasped and grabbed her hand, "You're, you're..." She nodded, not needing him to say it. "Yes now come with us."
He blinked back to being confused, she sighed, "Cain step forward he should know you."
And the Mystic Man did, he was blinking and fighting again, "Cain? You were one of mine."
This time he grabbed Cain's shoulders, dropping her hand, "You must keep her safe."
Cain shot her a confused look, she jerked her head towards the window, he nodded, "Mystic Man, we need to go, Zero will be here soon."
She grabbed the Mystic man's arm and lead him to the window, when he started to get confused she held out her hand the mark lighting up, he stopped fighting knowing she was to be trusted, she climbed out first, Glitch after her then the two of them got him on the ground. Raw and the Munchkin's next, and last Cain. They quickly started walking, and when they were four blocks away, she let herself giggle, "I can't believe that worked!" she spun in circle, fate and this adventure really were what she made of it.
"She took the Mystic Man with her?"
Zero bowed his head, "Yes sorceress."
"How? She's just a little girl!"
He bowed deeper, "The Ex-Tin Man Wyatt Cain was helping her."
She smirked, clearly seeing his rage at his betrayers escape from his punishment, "Do I need to tell you what to do next?"
He gritted his teeth before saying, "I will get the viewer ready."
DG was glad she didn't have to tell Cain they needed to get out of the city, he once again stole Demilo's wagon. It was as funny as last time how Demilo helped him by telling him how to start it and then going back to ranting about how Cain was a thief. The Mystic Man had fallen asleep almost the moment they climbed in, the vapors wearing off was hurting him, so he was trying to sleep it off.
They were out of the city by half an hour when Cain pulled over and parked, he turned around and waved her to the back where the others were, she crawled in back and Cain followed her, once both of them were seated, or in Cain's case standing he started the inquisition. "Okay kiddo you have some explaining to do."
She sighed and started playing with her hands, she didn't want to tell him but if she lied or left anything out he would never trust her again. "Three days ago on the other side I was asleep, and I had a dream, a terrible horrifying dream. I dreamed my parents were robots, I really wasn't from earth, and the worst of all, I was a princess, and my sister, a witch or better known as Sorceress."
She took a breath and didn't look up, "I woke and thought it silly, but as the day went on things happened just like they had in my dream, I knew things like what people were going to say, when someone was going to trip, and on, so I started to wonder. Then as evening came I decided I would be ready in case my dream came true and Long-coats did come in a travel storm. When they did I knew everything I had dreamed of was true. You Glitch really were the queen's advisor, Cain I know what happened to Adora and Jeb, Raw Kalm will be okay. And I am Princess DG."
She looked up, the Munchkin's were nodding, Glitch looked flabbergasted, Cain looked... she wasn't sure, and Raw was nodding.
She waited for someone to say something, and when someone did it wasn't what she was expecting.
"But the princess died."
It was Cain, oddly enough.
She nodded, "I did, the Witch killed me, my mother brought me back but the effort weakened her so she couldn't face the Witch."
He nodded once and he said, "Where to next?"
She smiled even if she was worried by his non response to the mention of Adora and Jeb, or even a freak out about her knowing stuff about the future that was changing as she thought about it. "I think our next stop should be to the Realm of the Unwanted."
Glitch frowned, "Why would we go there?"
She smiled, "To find Ahomo, but first we need to find the Seeker."
Everyone nodded and Cain climbed back up front, she went to climb back up front but he stopped her, "Get some rest, you're the one I want to take over driving for me when I need a rest."
She nodded, glad he wasn't calling her princess yet, but worried because he was so cold, she knew he had every right to be mad, she hadn't let him go find Zero while she was busy with the Mystic Man, and she could have seemed to have manipulated him, but she had good intentions...
She curled up near Raw, he reached out touching her arm, and he whispered, "Cain okay, just confused."
She nodded, and fell asleep faster after that.
She was asleep and thats when she felt hands around her throat. She woke, eyes flying open and she could see Az standing over her hands out stretch glowing with blackness, she choked trying to breath, she didn't even have enough air to cry, then blackness closed in.
She awoke to yells and whimpers, her eyes flew open and she realized her hands were lit with magic, and it seemed to holding everyone on the far side of the van. She let the light fade, Cain and Glitch looked at her. "What was that?" Cain asked at the same time as Glitch's "You okay Doll?"
Raw's whimpers died away, and his breathing faded to a rasping sound, she didn't answer the two men she reached out to Raw, "I'm sorry Raw that must have hurt you."
He uncurled and looked to her, eyes wet with tears, "Not as much as it hurt DG."
She smiled weakly, "That was a long time ago."
"New to you."
She nodded, "True enough."
Silence filled the wagon. Then was broken by a dry old voice, "What was that dream about girl?"
She smiled "You're awake!"
"As much as I think I'd rather not be."
She smiled ruthfully, "Yes, well, we all know that feeling. I was dreaming about why I don't need to go to the northern palace as a start."
His eyes went wide, "I don't remember getting my message to you I was too lost in the vapors, of course that might be why I don't remember."
She laughed, "If I had forced it from you, taken more time you would've gotten it to me, but I didn't need it, I needed to make sure you weren't taken by Azkadellia."
He frowned, sharp mind working, "What do you mean?"
She smiled, "I know everything. I know all about the Gray Gale, Ahomo, everything. Including what could have been, but I've changed too much already for my knowledge to be much use now."
His eyes wide with interest he leaned forward, and she for once saw how he could have been an excellent scholar. "You mean to say you saw an alternate universe."
She shrugged, "You could say that, I look it as I came back. It doesn't matter which it is, things won't go that way again."
He leaned back a smile on his face, "So you don't need to go to Finaqua?"
She grinned and then sighed, "More then vague hints would have been helpful last time." Her mood turned dark, "Yes I know what happened, and I know what I'm facing when I have the Emerald."
He nodded, matching her mood, "Good."
"Or not so good."
He nodded, "That too."
Glitch jumped in, "DO you have to be so cryptic? Seriously some of us would like to know what's going on!"
She grinned, "I don't know about Mystic Man here but I was just waiting to see how long it would take for someone to snap. We were talking about the fact my sister, Azkadellia is possessed by a Witch from times long passed. Az really would never do any of this, but she is merely a tool for the witch to use, so Cain don't shoot my sister if you can help it."
He nodded sharply, before relaxing from his stiff stance, "Glad you're okay, the way you were screaming..."
She blinked, her throat didn't feel raw so she couldn't have been screaming that long, "I was screaming? How odd."
Cain raised an eyebrow, and she went on, "It's just I don't think you can scream while being strangled."
Glitch went pale, and Cain looked serious, and he stated the thing everyone else was thinking, "You did say you had died."
She nodded, "Yeah it's one thing to know and then one to remember it yourself."
So feeling awkward she said, "How close are we to the Realm of the Unwanted?"
Cain shrugged, "Half a day or so."
"Good," she waved her hands, "Lets get going."
Cain nodded, "Sure, it's just we have to go on foot from here."
She looked up at him, "Why?"
He raised an eyebrow and she remembered why her question was stupid, and she groaned as he answered, "No road wide enough for the van."
She waved her hand "I know I should have remembered." Then she remembered what she was wearing, "And I need to change."
She waved her hands, "Okay princess orders everyone out, shoo."
Cain lead the way from the van, everyone else even the Munchkin's with help from Raw, climbed out. She quickly lost the dress, and then frowned, she could put her old clothes on and risk being recognized with her hair down. Because with their rescue of the Mystic Man she was betting those posters were out, and where they were going... New clothes it is. She dug through the closet Demilo had, she was amazed that he had so many clothes, but once she had gone through once she realized there was nothing she could wear that was practical for walking. So her jeans, shirt and shoes were back on and then she set about making a disguise for herself, she twisted her hair up and hid it under a hat. Then using some make up she gave herself a twisting scar running from the underside of her chin up her cheek if she kept her head down all people would see was the scar.
She was glad she had helped with the school play, other wise she wouldn't know how do this, though she had to wonder why Demilo had it.
She hopped out and struck pose, "Think anyone would know it was me with a look?"
All of the men stared at her, Cain gave her a 'you look stupid' look, "Princess why are you playing dress up?"
She scowled, that was it. "For your information there is a very good chance there will be wanted posters of us waiting for us, and last time we went in and you guys were grabbed by Zero, and I got kidnapped. So I think some disguises will help, if only to buy us the bit of time we need to find the Seeker and get out."
Cain continued to try to stare her down, and she glared right back, she didn't think his Tin Man ass was scary at all. He after all got it bit trying to help her last time. The Mystic Man broke the stare off, he laughed, and she and Cain stopped staring to look at him. He grinned at the two of them, "Lets get started, nothing like a bit of dress up to elude Azkadellia."
She smiled, "That's the spirit!"
And half an hour later Cain was dressed up a bit different, he got to keep his pants, but his coat and hat were gone, hidden in her bag, his darkened skin and wig of medium brown hair make it almost impossible to tell it was him, Glitch was dressed up in a slovenly untucked shirt of a indescribable blue, with some new black pants, along with some heavy boots, remembering his kick she decided to arm him without telling him or Cain about it. Raw was back in his cloak the two munchkin's hidden there too, the Mystic Man was harder; They, both him and her managed to use magic to give him long white hair, and put him in a ridiculous green suit, that looked very worn.
And they were disguised.
Cain had found the money Demilo had stashed so they were not only disguised but rich, of course only compared to their previous amount of no money. So with that they set off not ten minutes in she recognized some of the trees, she looked to Cain, "When did we cross the crack?"
He looked at her, "We didn't cross the crack we went over where the crack ends."
She nodded, "Changes of plans, we going that way." She set off, for Jeb and Adora's old Cabin.
Cain and the others didn't ask they just followed, she wished Cain would ask but she had something of an idea of what he had done to keep himself sane, Jeb and Adora were gone to him and Zero was his goal, till her. She wasn't sure how that happened, by rights it made sense he would have dropped her and gone for Zero trying to reach his goal from the years in the suit. But she supposed the scariness of completing the goal might have let him help her. Besides she was close to Zero, he probably told himself he could take care of him when ever he wanted.
Two hours later she saw the the white beech tree, she sighed, this wouldn't give Cain any good memories but he deserved to know. "Why did you stop?"
She looked to Glitch, he looked confused, Cain just seemed to waiting for her to explain and the Mystic man seemed to be contemplating her, Raw however was looking at the trees on the far side like he knew what awaited Cain. And she couldn't see the Munchkin's. "Cain go past the white tree and look for a Cabin."
He frowned at her but went ahead.
Glitch started after him but she grabbed his arm, and Glitch looked to her surprised, "Wait, Cain should get there first."
Glitch looked down at her eyes oddly serious, "What is on the other side of the trees doll?"
"Adora and Jeb's cabin, Jeb isn't there and Adora died, it's her grave site, Cain deserves a moment alone with her."
Glitch nodded and she ignored the Mystic Man's heavy gaze on her back, Raw touched her arm, "DG do the right thing."
She nodded, glad he thought so, but the moment they couldn't see Cain she lead the way, she wanted to give him a moment but they couldn't wait too long, even with out the extra stops of Finaqua and hopefully not Az's tower, the Eclipse was only four days away. They found Cain kneeling next to her grave just like last time, and like last time she touched his shoulder, but she had to explain. "We were so close I had to let you know, but Jeb is out there..."
Cain yanked his shoulder from her grasp not ready to hear about Jeb yet.
She bit back the ache him pulling away caused, but let him, he was grieving, and if the worst came to worst Jeb would be the one to rescue him.
When he stood she noted he had left his Tin Man badge with Adora, she followed Cain back towards the trail where they had been going to take to T.R.O.T.U. But she only said that in her head, if she told Glitch he would start chirp on about that, him and his thing for acronyms. She smiled shaking her head a little, she really did love his goof ball self she was so glad that he hadn't changed much once he got Ambrose back. A hand touched her shoulder, she looked over to her side to find the Mystic Man looking at her with knowing eyes, she smiled trying to hide her unease at his expression. But he had already seen though her, "You love Cain."
DG felt her eyes grow wide and she looked ahead, afraid the others would over hear, but they were a good fifteen feet ahead. She looked back at the Mystic Man feeling a touch resigned, "What gave it away?"
He gave her a smile, "Oh only a combination of my long life experience and the tiny flinch you had when Cain pulled away from you."
She laughed, not noticing the others glancing back her, "Oh! Just that?"
His smile grew wise, "And all the little things, the way you watch him, the way you always step to his side when we stop, the fact your smile grows a touch brighter when he does something you find endearing, even if it's kinda annoying to the rest of us."
She felt her cheeks flush and looked down at the ground hiding her face under her hat, she looked up and decided to trust him, "Last time he came for me every time, even when he said he wouldn't, even when I thought it impossible. He came for me. What's girl going to do? He broke into Azkadellia's tower for me."
The Mystic Man smiled, a wistful smile, but he stayed silent.
DG took it as a sign he understood, but couldn't give her any advice, she sighed letting her shoulders and sunny smile drop, "I never knew how to pick my timing."
That got a snort out of him, "That much is obvious."
She glared, "Hey, at least I'm not the one who looks like a leprechaun reject."
He raised an eyebrow, "I have no clue what that is, but I get the feeling that was supposed to be insulting."
Then they stepped out into the wide open field, that was over the T.R.O.T.U. She grinned and ran forward, "We're here!"
Glitch and Raw looked at her sceptically, "Where is here? It's a field."
Cain defended her, "Hey It's here... Some where."
She stepped forward, now where was the trap door? "What I wouldn't give to have Toto here right now."
She walked straight till the point where she remembered Toto taking the turn, and then she walked straightish that way, and low and behold she found it. She was surprised to see everyone had kept up with her, she grinned, "Straight down, and don't for any reason say Ahomo, we're here for the Seeker. And Glitch don't stop by Airofday, seriously."
Glitch nodded, and she opened the door with help from Cain, he went down first and she followed, excitement humming in her veins.
"She goes to find Ahomo."
Those words rang in Zero's ears, if the little princess was going so was Cain, he pushed his horse harder towards the Realm of the Unwanted, his spies said there was one man who could find Ahomo so he knew to start there first.
DG was gratified to see the wanted posters up, she had been right to play dress up, she tilted her head down enough she wouldn't meet anyone's eyes, and then she set off for the bar the trap meeting had been set up in. Just before going in she snagged a poster. This was the best place to stop, it was after all was a meeting place, she glanced around and didn't see Ahomo right off, so she waved everyone to a table and slipped up the bar, relishing the fact Cain was shadowing her.
She ordered a drink and asked, "The seeker in?"
The bartender met her eyes, suspicion clear but he pointed her to the darkest corner, she took a sip careful to peek over her shoulder, the dim lights caught on familiar blonde, even if she couldn't see his face, that hair she knew.
"Thanks." She left a tip with her drink, and started over, Cain whispered, "Where did you learn that kid?"
She grinned glad he couldn't see her face under the shadow of her hat, "You think seedy bars are limited to this side? Bartenders know almost everything."
She then sat at her dad's table, she could see how tense his form was in the shadow, Cain stood behind her, the ever present shadow. She spoke low trying to disguise her voice, if she was going to play cloak and dagger why not go all out? "I hear your the man to talk to about finding someone."
His shoulders relaxed a fraction, "Depends on who your looking for."
She looked at the table letting the floppy brim hide her grin, how had her father survived all this years if she could read him so easily? "Just looking for a man many are."
His shoulders tensed again, "Who?"
She spoke keeping her voice rough, "I suppose it's better to say I'm looking for several men," she lay the poster on the table feeling Cain jump behind her, "And a woman."
Her Father's body was tense, drawn like a bow string, but his voice was light. "Why come to me when so many are hunting them down?"
She shrugged, she had him he was interested if only to get rid of some bounty hunters, "As I said I heard you're the man to see."
Ahomo stood, "Maybe we could make an agreement else where?"
She stood, "I think that is best."
She saw Cain relax a touch behind her finally understanding her game, but she knew he shouldn't have relaxed yet, her Father had to have survived some how, and it wasn't because of his acting. She probably got her skills from him, her Mother was a much better lier.
He lead the way to a privet room where he pinned her to the door slamming it in Cain's face, she went limp, amused by the knife to her throat, "Who the hell are you? And how did you know to find me here? I only have one contact who knows to look for me here at this time."
She grinned knowing in this light he would be able to see her smile, "Oh guess I got lucky about the time then. But is that any way to say hello?"
He froze hearing her normal voice, he knocked the hat off, she grinned up at him, "I knew you had to have some skills or Az would have caught you ages ago."
"DG?" he made the knife disappear as fast it came and he hugged her tightly squeezing the air out of her.
"Air." she gasped.
He let her go, frowning, "You weren't suppose to remember me..."
She heard Cain grunt as he tried to open the door, she quirked an eyebrow, "You might want to let my friend in before he starts shooting."
Her dad nodded and opened the door to find a gun in his face, he put his hands up and she laughed, "It's okay Cain."
Cain looked to her before putting the gun away, he growled, "I some how can guess how you got kidnapped last time."
She laughed again, unable to deny it, "Lets go get the others, I bet Zero's on his way." She bent down and put her hat back on her head, Cain nodded, and lead the way back to the table. Her dad stopped her, "What did he mean last time?"
She winced, he had caught that, maybe he was smarter then he looked, but the muttonchops could make anyone look stupid, "I'll fill you in on the way back to get... whatever that thing is."
They were out on the street level when she saw that face, she stopped, frozen, she watched Glitch, Cain, Raw, her father, and the Mystic Man walk into a trap.
She pressed back letting the crowd swallow her, her heart thrummed, her breath came in gasps, Zero was here. Then came the struggle, Cain went down under Zero's bash to the head, knocking the wig off, Glitch kicked out catching the man, Zero went flying but the next Longcoat froze Glitch by putting a gun in his face, her father was forced to stop moving when one put a gun to his head, the Mystic Man was caught similarly. Raw had frozen even before the action started, probably because he sensed her fear, he didn't resist when a Longcoat used his gun to push his hood off. She saw the Munchkin's sliding down his shirt hiding themselves, probably to pick the locks later or something.
Zero stood blond hair mussed from his fall, he looked at the seven and realized she was missing the same time the rest of them did, while Cain was still knocked out cold, so it was six. "Where's the girl?"
The crowd backed up more and she pressed herself to the wall letting the shadow hide her. Besides she didn't look anything like herself with the hat on, Zero's eye skipped over her and he swore, and she smirked even as she feared for her friends and father, Az would not be happy, maybe she'd even kill him off for them.
She watched them get some water and throw it on Cain waking him, though he looked confused, she winced he probably had a concussion, she stayed the whole hour it took for Zero to chain them to a log and get orders from Azkadellia to bring them back even without her. Then she slipped off ahead, running through the crowd she was going to beat them up to the road and maybe find Jeb first or at the very least beat them to the tower.
She ran for as long as her legs and energy held out, then she walked, quickly almost running in spurts, down the road she rushed hoping for some help, and help she found. She came to an over turned wagon, she took in the two men and the one women and then the cloaked figure, they look at her and she had a feeling they weren't ordinary folk, the tense way they handled themselves said they knew what was behind her. She slowed and took them in, she looked side to side, she couldn't see any one but she felt stares, she walk up to the cloaked figure, he seemed to be straightening things long straightened.
"Hello, may I help?"
The cloak figure answered, "You'd best be moving along now."
The tone, the phrasing, "Jeb Cain just the person I was hoping to find."
The whole group stiffened and suddenly people stepped free of the underbrush threatening her with weapons, the figure with the hood tossed it back, "How did you know it was me? And who are you?"
She pulled her hat off, showing her face, she smiled earnestly, "Zero is less then an hour behind me, the Mystic man and some other important men were captured, I needed them freed."
Jeb looked her over, eyes hard like his father's even if the brown color was different, "Who are you?"
She sighed, "The water please?"
He passed her the bucket, she took it and washed away her fake scar, then staring into the bucket, she answered, "I... I am the key to ridding us of Azkadellia, I dare not say more then that but before the Eclipse is over the Sorceress will be dead."
He looked her over and she met his eyes, he searched her face long and hard before he waved her up the hill and sent his people back into place for the trap, she nodded, "Thank you Jeb Cain you won't regret this."
He nodded, and muttering in a whisper she didn't think she was supposed to over hear, "I get that feeling."
"NO! The little bitch is ready for them! Ready my horse I meet them."
Her underlings scurried from the room and she opened her top, no harm in trying to get some extra help in catching the slippery brat. She let the Mobats escape her tattoos, and she basked in the magic under her skin, "Catch her," she ordered.
All her Mobats sent she re-buckled her outer dress, and strode down the stairs in a hurry to finally get some answers.
DG leaned on the tree from her vantage point she was able to see at least half a dozen men, Jeb really wanted to catch Zero, he had gone all out. She couldn't blame him, Zero was the cause of so much evil. Hell if she got a chance she'd have to say sorry to the Cains because she'd kill him.
Then she heard the clink of chains, the thud of feet, and horses.
She started to breath heavy, her adrenaline flowing, Cain, her Father and the others around the corner, just that close to being saved. They had given her a club and she had her knife, but she knew she was mostly useless against guns, and as tired as she was from running ahead to beat them... she would wait till she was sure she could do some good. Heart pounding she took a moment to appreciate what Jeb had done, nerves of steal could apply, she knew how deep his hatred for Zero burned but at the same time he was calm, kneeling there acting busy.
His troops were equally calm, seeming to grovel when Zero and his troops rode up, But Zero seemed to sense something was wrong, hand on Cain's gun, he eyed them. Her eyes flicked to Cain, he too seemed to know something was up, if he knew... Her eyes went back to Zero and her mind screamed Jeb needed to back up, but he went forward offering water. The moment he was close enough to touch Zero. Zero kicked out spilling the water, but her heart breathed a sigh of relief when that was all. She clenched her hand as around her club better, deep breaths, she coached herself. Her breath slowing she peeked back out waiting for the signal.
Jeb waved his hand and it started; The horsemen down to her left fell dart in his throat, Jeb reached up for Zero intending to pull him down but Zero half ready for this, he kicked out again catching him in the chin, Jeb fell, and Zero charged clearly wanting to run the men coming out from the far side of the wagon down, she heard the first gun shot and saw the man to her right tumble down the hill dead, she glanced back to the main group the other four horsemen down, Zero was the only one still mounted, he had shot one of the men charging him, and had his horse kicked the other, Jeb was scrambling to his feet still going after Zero.
Three groundmen down she rushed out and conked the one shooting the men on the other side in the head, he fell and she found herself facing Cain and her Father's surprised eyes, she grinned and went forward. Dropping her club she pulled out her pocket knife and started picking the locks, Glitch twisted around so he could watch her, "Doll!"
Her father free she picked Cain's, then she started on Glitch's, then hearing a yelp she looked away and found Zero baring down on them, her eyes went wide she could see Jeb on the ground, trying to get back up, two more of Jeb's men lay dead at Zero's hands, then she was staring down the barrel of Cain's gun in Zero's hands.
Frozen she could only twist the lock pick hoping to free Glitch before she was shot, then Zero's aim shifted, the gun went off and someone behind her fell, she turned, leaving pocket knife in the lock, Cain lay on the ground eyes shut.
Her world stopped for a heart beat nothing more, then she got angry, Zero always took him away from her, hands aglow she didn't have a plan she didn't even know what she was doing, she just threw. And amazingly enough a lighting bolt took Zero in the back, he fell silently, up and over his horse's head where the horse then ran him over in it's dash to get away.
She scrambled over to Cain, Jeb reaching her faster then she could reach Cain, Jeb turned her around, "You have magic?"
His face a mix of angry and amazed she wasn't sure what she meant to say when she saw the Mobats coming. "Jeb not now, get your men out of here." He frowned confused and then he realized she was looking up, he spun and then his face turned to a mix of angry horrified. "Azkadellia is coming!"
His men went from searching the men on the ground to grabbing their wounded and running for it, Her father had freed Glitch and was working on the Mystic Man, she shoved him off and said, "Dad you have to get the compass thing, that is what you need to do I'll catch up soon, Mystic Man go with Jeb if you can. Glitch, wait for me outside Azkadellia's tower by the woods." Mystic Man free she turned to Raw, "Run for it Raw, can't let you get caught too."
She handed the knife to her dad and took off running not even giving him enough time to understand she was leading Azkadellia away. The Mobats followed her, she wove in between the trees, the first time a Mobat got it's paws on her, her Magic reacted to her unstable emotions, her fear Cain was dead, and it smashed into a tree twenty feet up and then fell to the forest floor.
She continued to run, leading the Mobats away. All too soon one got a hold of her and others swarmed her, grabbing her arms, meaning three were now carrying her, she slumped, going limp, Cain was shot, Azkadellia was coming for her... Actually she was going to Az, but close enough, she hoped she could talk fast enough to stop Az from killing her.
They carried her over tops of the trees, and then not twenty feet from where Jeb had stopped Zero stood her sister, she noticed while the Mobat's brought her in to land, that Cain wasn't there nor was anyone other then the dead, Longcoats and Resistance. So Cain was alive. She hoped, it was that or Jeb recognized him and brought him along anyway, she hoped it wasn't that.
She fell the last five feet, and once on the ground she stood meeting Az's cold eyes. "Hello, it's been a while hasn't it?"
"Yes it has my darling baby sister. Any last words?"
She smiled, anticipating Az's frustration, "Only if you want the emerald I wouldn't if I were you."
Azkadellia's face twitched, "How do I know you aren't just saying that?"
She smiled, and started to swing her hands, "You don't, but the sunseeder wouldn't work without it."
That pissed her off, she could see it in the snap of her lavender eyes so like their mothers, but Azkadellia could see she wasn't bluffing, or at least if she was she was a better lier then she knew. Az snapped her fingers and Zero was lying at her feet, and now that she was closer she could see he was breathing, she scowled, she had hoped she had killed him.
"Zero." The body near her feet twitched, she scowled harder, she then looked up at Az, and she shivered. The witch was never more clear on her sister's face, smirking with amusement, she snapped her fingers again. He now lay face up, burn buried in the dirt, Zero blinked bleary up at Az, he tried to stand but couldn't even lift himself as weak he as was. DG found herself wondering if he was closer to death then she thought.
"Zero would you like get that Tin Man you hate so much? Because if so I need you to stand." The childish voice she used seemed cruel, and the fact Zero did seem to want exactly that, watching him struggle she found herself wondering what really brought on this feud between the Cains and Zero. Being a Resister was enough to get thrown in an Iron suit she knew that, but this undying hatred was something else. Zero fell back again, eyes hazed with hate and pain, he gasped for air, the pained sound breaking though to her, it was pitiful the witch was doing this to Zero.
"Azkadellia stop it."
Az turned to her and she could see this was a mind game to her, she sighed, "Fine witch do what you will, he after all is yours." And she shut her eyes, as much as she wished Zero dead this was just pathetic, and as evil as he was he shouldn't be taunted like this.
"Why would you care sister? You did this to him after all."
DG opened her eyes and glared, "I want him dead, gone from my life forever but this is just cruel."
Azkadellia stared in her eyes and what she or the witch was looking for she wasn't sure, but Az abruptly turned away, crooking a finger Zero was on his feet, Az lifted his chin and exhaled, giving life like her Mother for her.
DG understood what the witch had been looking for, how serious was she about wanting Zero dead. She scowled, wishing she knew what she was doing when it came to magic, as it was she was left flexing her hands wishing she could wrap them around Zero's throat, he had shot Cain again.
Zero staggered away from Az, then he straighten, and bowed, "Thank you Sorceress."
She smiled, "It wasn't for you Zero."
He nodded bowing, "But just the same I'm grateful."
DG frowned, something was wrong with Zero, seriously wrong with him.
"Grab her Zero and someone give him a horse, we're bringing my little sister over for a visit."
Four and half hours later Zero had an iron grip on her arm and she was being lead to the viewer room, she found herself praying she was right and it mostly didn't count because she had just seen it. Not lived it. Fighting panic she turned her thoughts to everyone else, she hoped Az would tried to get her to lead her to the Emerald using Toto, and she hoped Glitch remembered and understood what she had said to him, and she really, really hoped Cain was okay. As in miracle type okay. Of course she could just hoped her Father had listened too.
She stayed limp, not fighting just watching, plunked in the chair Az paced before her. Ignoring Zero tightening the straps she spoke to her sister, "You know Az you could give up the evil witch business, shut down the sunseeder, and forget about the emerald, it could be just you and me."
Az looked at her, and laughed, "Naive as ever DG."
She smiled back a bit sadly, "No, just hopeful, I remember when we friends, and did simple child things together, skipping rocks, picking apples, chasing off bears."
Az looked at her a spark in her eye, DG smiled she could feel Az in that look, "And most importantly, your prediction of 'your adventures have a way of getting me in to trouble'."
Az shut down and DG felt a little bit of her hope die, "Bring in Lylo!"
She winced and unable to help herself, she yanked testing her restraints, "Az you don't need to kill Lylo over this! My memories were cloaked by mother he won't be able to get through!"
Cliffy... Feed my muse and you'll get an update.