Echoes of Power
“How exactly did you find me?” Alexandre asked, curious to know if him being saved had just been a coincidence.
“Exactly like the geigers did…”, said Damian, “I’ve been following you for a few days now. It’s not hard, with your aura leaking like that you’d be easily spotted from a few miles away. You’re gonna have to learn to hide it.”
“Wait…”, Alexandre frowned. “A few days?”
“Yes,” replied the older man with a nod.
“So… it was you at the park that time! I recognize your scarf!”, exclaimed the teenager as it clicked in his mind.
“Yes, that was me. I’d been following your mana trail since the previous day and I wanted to see who it belonged to. One has to be completely stupid or ignorant to reveal their presence that much, or pretty confident. I believe you belong to the first category…”
“Hey! I’d almost died the day before!” Alexandre exclaimed defensively. “That’s when I was attacked by those creatures the first time, I barely survived…”
“Oh. That explains everything then…”, said his interlocutor in a mocking tone.
Alexandre felt anger rise in his chest. How could that guy mock him like this? He had almost died because of something he didn’t understand and had almost no control over. This was something he had not wanted at all and that had almost cost him his life. The teenager felt like punching him in the face, though he had a feeling the man wouldn’t even let him touch him.
“Yes, let your anger flow,” suddenly said Damian in a low voice, getting closer, “but don’t mistake its target boy.”
The older man’s eyes darkened and Alexandre felt a cold shiver run all along his spine. Even if he had saved him, it didn’t mean he was necessarily friendly. The realization made him freeze and he felt a drop of sweat roll along his temple, even though he had been completely calm a few instants before. That guy was bad news… He couldn’t explain why but Alexandre’s body was feeling the intense pressure and, to his surprise, even something that he thought he recognized as blood lust. Who is that guy? he caught himself thinking. The question died in his throat though as the moment passed and Damian’s eyes seemed to revert to their normal color.
“I am not you enemy.” Don’t make me become so.
The words hadn’t been spoken but Alexandre hear them as clear as day nonetheless.
“Direct your anger and your resentment at the geigers, these creatures are the ones that tried to kill you. You were lucky that I was there to save you this time. You might not be so the next one.” Damian added, keeping his gaze fixed on Alexandre’s and not looking away once.
“Yeah…”, was all the teenager managed to mutter as an answer.
He swallowed with difficulty. He had been saved and cured from that strange thing the creature had tried to do to him but now it felt like his life had passed from the hands of monsters to ones of a demon. Damian didn’t seem to have any ill intention –for the moment at least, he thought- but he had no assurance it wouldn’t change. He had to be careful. A thought, brief and raw, flashed through Alexandre’s mind at that moment. He almost let it slip away, instantly deeming it too crazy and stupid to be of any use, but something inside him made him grab onto it. His mind latched onto the small but nagging idea. It was stupid, that much was obvious, and dangerous –undeniably– but it might just work in his favour…
“So, how do you feel?”, the man in front of him asked as he readjusted his scarf.
Alexandre remained silent, pondering the odds. It’s crazy. Yeah, it’s crazy dangerous. But it might just work… It might also end up with you dead, you idiot! Yeah, but if it worked… Alexandre didn’t give any more weight to his internal voice and simply voiced the insane thought that had just passed through his mind, looking straight into the deep blue abyss that were Damian’s eyes. It felt like staring into a bottomless pool and, strangely, it made him want to do reckless things… Exactly the type of thing he did next.
“Then teach me.” Alexandre simply replied.