Kallista stood just inside the door looking at Bridget. She was lying there in the hospital bed with her eyes closed. Her wounds stood out sharply against her pale skin. If it had been anyone else who had been caught in the trap, they would have been dead. But Bridget was a vampire, and a tough one at that.
It had been several days since the incident at the town and Bridget still had a ways to go before healing properly.
Kenspeckle hustled through the hall behind her. He slowed as he neared her.
"Please don't be long, my dear." He said kindly to her. "My patient still needs to recover."
He looked with slight disapproval at Bridget. "Even if she is a vampire."
Bridget opened her eyes then and looked at him with a wicked glint. She snapped at him as he checked her over.
"Oh, do behave!" He responded with slight exasperation. "Really! I feel like I'm dealing with a kid."
He was back out the door quickly, clutching the vile that hung around his neck. Her mocking laughter followed him down the hall. Kallista turned back to see Bridget's eyes on her, not blinking.
"I'm hungry." She spoke with a hard edge to her voice. "I need to leave now!"
"I know." Kallista nodded mildly. She moved carefully around the bed, careful to keep her distance from Bridget. "You will have your chance........please........just give yourself a few more days to recover."
Bridget turned her head the other way."The trap.........did they find any more?"
"Three more. It has been taken care of." Kallista answered. "And I took care of the townspeople, removing the illusion I put on them. All is back to normal there."
For a moment neither one of them spoke. But Kallista could feel the tension build. Finally the bubble broke and Bridget asked the question that the rest of the gang had been thinking.
"Why are you not using your full abilities! You could have been killed!"
Kallista stood still. If Bridget hadn't seen the slight tightening of Kallista's fist, she would have thought the girl unaffected by this.
"But I wasn't killed and I did my part." She kept that tiny smile that played upon her lips, her voice even. "The townspeople are safe, no one was killed and you are getting better! I would call that a success."
"You used your full power when your sister died!" Bridget snapped. "When you blew up that building...that school! What has changed?"
The smile froze, then fell off Kallista's face, replaced with a rare snarl.
"Nothing and everything!" She shot back. Bridget looked on bemused as the girl struggled with emotions to heavy to bare. "What good can I do? For all my training I'm still not able to beat Skylara or Mary in a fight! How can I be of any good to anyone?"
"Skylara and Mary?" Bridget repeated in disbelief, recognizing a change in topic. "Don't be so stupid, girl! Did you forget how much older they are then you? How much more training they have?"
"It doesn't matter!" Kallista said with an intensity that belied her age. "It doesn't matter if I........"
"I smelled you in the woods back at that town!" Bridget cut her off suddenly, looking at her strangely. "But it couldn't have been you! You didn't arrive until after I got caught in the trap!"
Momentarily caught off guard, Kallista's eye's widened.
Momentarily caught off guard, Kallista's eye's widened.
"So," Bridget confirmed. "You know of what I speak of. Spit it out girl! Do you have family that you have not told us about?"
"My family is dead as you well know!" Kallista spat out, her eyes wild with rage and.....grief. "I have nothing more to say to you. I only came to wish you well. I'm sorry I came at all!"
Kallista twirled around and glided elegantly out of the room.
Bridget sighed and closed her eyes. "You can come out, now."
Mary appeared and moved to Bridget's side.
"You were a little harsh, don't you think." Mary spoke smoothly.
"Nonsense! That girl has great talent." Bridget grumbled. "If she doesn't use it soon I will drink her blood and make good use out of her!"
"Right......." Mary smiled knowingly.
"Oh! Wipe that smile from your face!" Bridget said without force. "How long were you here anyhow, listening to our conversation?"
"Long enough." Mary answered simply, looking towards the direction Kallista had left.
Kallista walked down the hall not making a sound despite her anger. Lost in her anger she walked by Clarabelle, did a double take and walked back towards the woman. Kenspeckle's assistant was sitting in front of a long table, apples and bits of paper lying around. It looked as is she was trying to drill a hole in the fruit. The results were messy.
".......um, excuse me, Clarabelle...I don't mean to pry.....but what are you doing?"
Clarabelle looked up, her eyes appearing larger through the goggles.
"Oh! I'm making Fortune apples!"
"Oh, yes!" Clarabelle nodded happily and removed her goggles. "I need to make some extra income and came up with this idea! Don't you see? Apples are healthy and good for you. You eat one and then when you are done you get a fortune inside!"
Kallista didn't know what to say . She just stood there stunned. But Clarabelle didn't notice and continued to prattle.
"I just know it will be a big seller! All the parents will want to give their children some."
Clarabelle went right back to work with drilling holes and stuffing the little bits of paper in them.
"Well.....good luck with that." Kallista managed to say before fleeing back down the hall.
She waved to Kenspeckle and hurried out the door desperate to get that image out of her mind. She looked up to see it was still decent out. That was good. It meant she could ride her Ninja motorcycle home.
An Autumn breeze pulled at her hair gently as she moved back to the meeting building. She walked up the steps deep in thought. As soon as this afternoon's meeting was over, she would head for home. At this point she wanted nothing to do with anyone else right now. She opened the heavy door and was faintly surprised when Darkane and Florence pulled her in quickly and hastened her to a corner. Leo looked up briefly from his laptop and eyed them suspiciously. Kallista couldn't really blame him the way those two where giggling. Nicolette watched amused as she sat texting on her phone.
"Where is Israel, Sarthacus and Dragona?" Kallista asked the two other girls. She didn't have to ask where Lillivae and Necros were. The building shook as the two made their presents know ans the fought one another.
"They are coming!" Darkane said urgently. "We have to hurry!"
Kallista caught on then seeing their eyes light up mischievously.
"You are going to try and sabotage them again?" She asked incredulous. "What makes you think you will succeed this time?"
"Because we keep on improving!" Florence answered indignant. "Are you going to help us or not?"
Kallista didn't know whether to groan or laugh. She did both. It seemed to help with her mood so she agreed even though she suspected what the end result would be.
"Alright. Count me in. What do you want me to do?"
A few minute later she stood where Florence wanted her, in front of the main door. Florence and Darkane hid on either side behind the tall potted plants that decorated the entry way.
"Here they come." Kallista warned as she saw Dragona's gorgeous car roll up.
Out came Sarthacus, Israel, and Dragona deep in discussion, walking up the sidewalk to the steps.
Behind her she could sense the others shifting their attention from their activities to watch what the girls where doing.
Kallista whispered something not heard and cast a light illusion over Darkane and Florence. It now looked as if no one was there. She backed out of the way smiling slightly and gave a small formal bow to the three men who came in. Florence and Darkane jumped up and went to use their magic on the trio when suddenly a great wind blew around all three girls and whipped them together.
"See!" Kallista screamed with laughter as they where flung outside. They landed with a slight bump on the ground then found they were suddenly drenched with water.
Israel never broke off his conversation during the whole thing and acted like nothing had happened. Dragona and Sarthacus however turned and looked on with grins at the sight of Kallista sitting in the mud and the other two girls looking up in outrage as they lay tangled together indignantly.
"I told you it wouldn't work." Kallista wheezed. Her black hair now lay in clumps around her face having escaped the confines of her Japanese hair pins.
"We are not through yet!" Florenec seethed quietly, her pretty eyes staring hard at the two men still grinning by the front door. "Just you wait!"
"When you ladies have finished playing in the mud and get cleaned up, you can come on in!" Sarthacus said pleasantly in his Scottish accent.
Dragona gave then all one more smile and closed the door firmly on them.
"WHAT!" Darkane jumped up a soggy muddy mess. "They can't do that! We are part of the team to!"
Both Florence and Darkane ran squishing all the way to the front door. Kallista followed more slowly, not in much better condition. When they tried the handle to the door, they found it locked.
"HEY! Let us in!" Florenced yelled.
Laughter could be heard from inside. "Not until you are clean from the mud and dried off!" Came the reply from Dragona.
Kallista leaned against the ornate railing as her two co-conspirators debated through thr doors for a couple more minutes. When it became obvious no one would let them in, the three started to prowl around the building looking for another ways in.
"I can help you dry off, you know...." A voice came from above.
It was Leo. he was standing at a second story window with it open so they could hear him. He calmly sipped a hot cocoa and held out his other hand. Sparks danced around in his palm growing brighter and brighter.
"This would work well." He spoke calmly and smiled wickedly.
Florence and Darkane's eyes widened. They backed away nervously.
Someone appeared beside Leo. It was Skylara.
"Leo. Don't tease the girls." She laughed and then called out to them before closing the window. "Come in when you are clean and dry!"
"Well, how do you like that!" Dakane sputtered.
"Yeah. I was sure she would help." Florence remaked, puzzle.
Kallista squeezed out her soggy kimono as much as she could.
"Girls." She began. "I think we are just going to have to do as they said."
They went around the back to keep hidden from the street in front. While the meeting went on in the inside, the soggy girls used magic to make a large fire and warm up with.
Kallista didn't really mind. She felt relieved not to be in there. She could only guess what would be discussed after her conversation with Bridget earlier.
But she didn't tell the other two who were busy comforting themselves with tales of promised vengeance.
And so, even though she was still slightly damp, she slipped away from the fire nodding her goodbyes to the two and retrieved her motorcycle.
She was halfway home when the dreaded call came. It was Israel.
"Don't think you are off the hook." Was all he said.
Her heart sank.