I don't own Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel. The plot is mine. Set after Enchantress in the 21st century. SPOILER ALERT. It will give things away if you haven't read Enchantress.
Scathach the Shadow wandered. She wandered over the Earth, through countless Shadowrealms, going on the occasional adventure with her good friends, Joan of Arc and Sophie Newman. But, by the start of the twenty-first century, things had slowed down.
Joan and Saint Germain had settled down in Paris once more, and Saint Germain was working on his newest album. They'd just returned from a trip to Australia, where he was promoting his music.
Sophie had moved back in with the Elder Tsagaglalal, who was taking the place as her "parental figure", though Sophie was almost ten thousand years old. Sophie had decided to finish her education in this century, though she had studied throughout the years.
Scathach hadn't seen either woman in almost a decade.
Now, the Warrior Maid found herself looking out onto the Isle of Skye in Scotland. Home. She'd never thought she'd return, but she needed to see her old home. See what had happened to it over the millennia.
"Scathach the Shadow. A surprise," a male voice said from behind her. She froze, but didn't draw her weapons. Slowly, she turned to see a man in a long black cloak, a hood hiding his face.
"Who are you?" she asked carefully.
"I think you know," the man said, and he pulled the hood off with his right hand. Scathach took in a quick breath. Blue eyes looked back at her, and unruly blonde hair fell into them. A hook took the place of his left hand.
"Marethyu," she whispered. Then, even more quietly; "Josh."
He smiled. "Scatty." She smiled too, for a fleeting moment. "The years have been treating you well?" he asked.
"Yes, and you?" she replied. It had been so long since she'd seen him, centuries, millennia, even, and yet, she was being very curt and polite. It was the same Josh Newman she'd met in San Francisco that night Nicholas had brought the twins to her dojo, but, he looked older. More mature, she decided.
"I've been fine." There was a pregnant pause. "Scatty, honestly, come give an old friend a hug." Her mask broke, and she smiled for real this time. She walked towards him and gave him a short hug. She noted that he kept the hook well away from her.
"What, what should I be calling you?" she asked. To call him 'Josh' was comfortable, but it didn't seem proper, considering his newest title.
"Josh is fine, if you want," he replied. "Care to take a walk with me?" he asked. Scathach nodded, and they walked to the shore. "After all these years, you've finally returned here," he noted.
"You knew I would," she said. Josh laughed.
"It was always a possibility. You could've decided not to, though, but then, we wouldn't have met up. I'm glad you chose to return," Josh said, smiling.
"So am I." There was a pause as the two immortals stood on the shoreline. "I really missed this place. It was my home, more than anywhere else ever has, or will," the Warrior said, glancing sideways at Josh. He nodded.
There was another pause, and Scathach spoke up again. "Just listen to us. We haven't seen each other for, who knows how long, and we barely speak. I haven't seen you for years, Josh."
"I saw you at Aiofe and Niten's wedding."
Scatty turned to look at him. "You were there?" He nodded. "I didn't see you."
"I didn't want you to see me. Only Niten and Aiofe knew I was there." He paused, thinking. Then, a grin, in resemblance to when he had first met her, spread across his face. "You looked gorgeous, by the way. All of you did."
Slightly dumbstruck, she took a moment to respond. "Thank you," was all she managed. She had been Aiofe's maid of honour, and Sophie and Joan her bridesmaids. She was still mulling over the fact that Josh had been a part of their lives, and they hadn't known it. "What other occasions did you attend that we didn't know about?"
"Funerals, Sophie's graduation, birthdays," he said simply. "I went to things I should have gone to, as a brother and as a friend." Scatty nodded. "How is Sophie?"
Scatty looked at him, confused. "She's your sister," she said. "I haven't seen her in a while, to be honest."
Josh thought carefully about what he was going to say next. "I was thinking of going to visit her at Tsagaglalal's house in San Francisco. Do you want to come?"
For the second time that day, Scathach was caught off guard. "You want me to come to your family reunion?" She started shaking her head. "I'll make my own time to go see Sophie, Josh, I don't want to intrude-"
"You're pretty much a part of our family, Scatty," Josh cut her off. "I mean, it's pretty messed up as it is. Sophie and I aren't even twins, but-"
"Don't say that," Scatty muttered. "Please don't say that. You're as close as twins, you were raised as twins, you are twins. You are sun and moon, silver and gold. Josh, don't say you're not twins."
Josh looked down at the hook attached to his left arm. "You're right. We are twins. I shouldn't have said that." He looked back at her. "So, are you coming or not?"
Scatty thought. "I'd love to see her."
Josh smiled. "Come with me, then." He held his right hand out to her. "You don't have anything that you need?" Scatty shook her head and took his hand.
Immediately, their clothes changed, she into black skinny jeans, black combat boots and a black tee, much like her usual clothing, but more modern. Josh was now wearing blue jeans, a faded red T-shirt and a thin black leather jacket. The hook on his left hand had been replaced by a black glove.
Josh studied the black glove, flexing the fingers. "What do you think?" he asked, looking at it. Scathach also studied it, then sighed.
"Makes you look slightly like a biker," she said, laughing. Josh sighed, but shrugged.
Together, they walked back to the road, where a black Jeep was waiting for them. Scatty had arrived here through a leygate, but knew that it would be closed. Besides, it would just take them back into the Shadowrealm she had been in, and not San Francisco.
"Where'd you get this?" Scatty asked. "And what driving instructor would give a license to someone with a hook for their left hand?" Josh laughed.
"It's a friend's, here in Scotland. They said I could borrow it for the day." They drove into town, where he dropped the Jeep off around the back of a store. He put the keys behind the license plate.
Josh looked at Scatty. "Shall we?" he asked, offering her his arm. She raised her eyebrows.
"Scatty, if you don't take my arm, your clothes will change back, and suddenly you'll be walking around downtown with weapons strapped to your back. I suggest you take my arm," Josh said. Scatty rolled her eyes, but did as he asked. "This form of magic is only sustained by touch, when transferred to another person. If not, it will wear off in a matter of minutes."
"You just want to hold my hand," Scatty said, joking with him. Sophie had once told her that, when they had first met, Josh had developed at crush on her.
Josh grinned. "That too."
"So, Marethyu, where are we headed?" Scatty asked in an undertone.
Josh raised his eyebrows at his other title, but didn't comment. "An abandoned farm, two minutes walk from here. There's a leygate there that will take us to San Francisco."
"You really do know everything," Scatty joked. Josh didn't reply.
As they walked, a couple of teenage boys watched them with interest. One of the bigger ones nodded at Scatty, and the three others with him grinned wickedly. She watched them out of the corner of her eye, and laughed on the inside. They thought they could take her, because she was so small. They'd regret that.
They started walking towards the couple.
"You see them?" Josh asked in rapid Gaelic, his mouth barely moving.
"You take one, I'll take the other three," she replied in the same language.
Josh laughed quietly. "You insult me, Scatty. I could take them all, if I wanted to. Two and two, then?" Scatty realized she had forgotten how much Josh had learned. He was tall and lanky, but not without muscle.
The four boys had caught up with them. Scatty felt Josh's grip on her hand tighten. Wait.
"Mornin'," the biggest one said in an American accent. Oh joy. The couple ignored them. "Hey! I said morning," he repeated.
Josh stopped and pulled Scatty to his side. "I heard you," he replied.
"We just came to take a look at your little friend here," the leader continued. That was when the truth hit her, they weren't looking to fight her, they were looking to fight Josh for her.
She felt Josh press his hand to the small of her back. Wait.
"Is that so?" Josh replied smoothly. "Well, we really have to get going."
"You don't have to go anywhere, not at this moment," another sneered, and the other two laughed. "We aren't done with you." They were looking at Scatty like she was a piece of meat.
Josh allowed the magic to waver, and they caught a glimpse of his left hand, which he had resting on Scatty's left shoulder. Or rather, the hook that replaced it. The magic was restored in seconds, but the group had seen enough. Seen Scatty's weapons, seen Josh, Marethyu, Death, in his usual state. Seen magic.
They each took a step backward, but regained their composure quickly. The leader motioned for two of his burly cronies to grab Scatty. Josh let her go without a fight, and only when they had grabbed her did she react.
Both feet shot out at either thug, and she kicked them both in the groin. The one holding her left arm let go and fell to the ground. She spun and punched the other one in the face, breaking his nose with an audible crack!, and then kicking him in the stomach. He dropped her, and she landed lightly beside Josh.
The leader ambled towards Josh, while the other went for Scatty. She made short work of him, and he dropped to the ground just as Josh pressed on the leader's pressure point. He fell at Josh's feet.
Josh held his hand out to Scatty, and they continued on their way, leaving three groaning, and one unconscious, thugs behind. If anyone had been looking on, they were gone now.
"Three for me, one for you," Scatty said in a sing-song voice.
"I could've taken the last two, had you not decided to fight him."
Scathach laughed. "Sure," she said. "Nice touch with the hook, though. It really threw them."
Josh gasped in a mocking way. "Scathach, The Warrior Maid, the Shadow, King Maker and Daemon Slayer, complimenting me? I don't believe it."
"Same old Josh, I see."
They reached the farm, and Josh pointed to the barn. "Just outside the doors," he said, leading her over to a tree. A golden pillar emanated from the ground, which went all the way to the sky. Saint Germain had taught her to see leygates.
"Good, it's gold. It'll be easier for me to activate." Josh's aura flared, and then he stepped into the pillar. He vanished. Seconds later, his hand appeared, waving her in. She followed him...
...and found herself in a alley, sitting next to Josh. He was looking around thoughtfully.
"Know where we are?" she asked. Josh nodded slowly, then stood up.
"This way," he said. Scatty grabbed his arm, and he turned. "What?" She smirked and gestured to his cloak and hook.
"Loose the cape, Marethyu. Sophie wants to see Josh." He muttered something incoherent, probably oh, and then restored the magic. They strolled down the road, and Josh led the way to Tsagaglalal's house.
They turned onto the street, and then the driveway. Josh stopped there. "Ready?" Scathach asked. He nodded, and strode up the driveway. The Warrior Maid trailed a few steps behind.
Josh knocked on the door. Suddenly, someone screamed.
A/N: So, how'd you like it? My first SINF multi-chap fic. Dun dun dun. I have to say, I didn't love the ending of Enchantress, but I didn't hate it.
Please let me know what you think. Lovely review button just below.