Chapter Twenty: Gilly’s Trap

    “Brenden?” I breathed, trying to fight the sleep that was beckoning to take me. I could feel him jostling me as he scampered back to our protection. Tucking a piece of his hair behind his ear, I stared at his beautiful magenta eyes and dark gray skin in a complete daze.

    “Shush, Athena,” he whispered.“You’ll be fine once we get back to Pigeon.”

     He was right. As soon as we entered the purple smoke, my head cleared and my stomach settled. I breathed in the clean air. But when I looked up, I saw Brenden, the fairy in shadow, holding me with his light gray skin, black hair and dark eyes. Had I been dreaming? “W-What happened?” I asked.

    Brenden scowled. “You could have been killed, Athena! What were you thinking?”

     “Yeah,” Francisco said,hands on hips, “for once, I agree with sour pants. I can’t believe you did that! I’m so pissed right now.”

    “But she’s fine, guys,” Holly interjected. Yay for my bff sticking up for me! “Aren’t you?” she asked.

    Brenden set me down as I took another breath and grinned. “I feel great! In fact, I haven’t felt this good since before I changed into a drakkan. I think I don’t need the shield.”

     Brenden shook his head. “You need it. Your witch side longs for the crimerife and will do anything to seize it all the while hurting your human self. Too much crimerife is deadly, even for witches. That’s why they don’t mine it.”

    By this time Ferbish came barreling toward us. He pulled Brenden away from our protection and then hurled a powerful punch to his jaw, sending him sprawling.

Brenden stayed where he was, only slightly moving from his fall.

    “Come on, whoever ye are. Punch me back, if ye dares.” Ferbish bent over with his arms out, ready for an attack.

     “Ferbish, stop!” I yelled.

“Yeah,” Holly agreed. “No fighting, guys.”

     Pointing at Brenden, who was cowering in the mud, Ferbish yelled, “That ain’t no fairy, Miss. Look at him. He should be dead right now, but he ain’t.” Ferbish’s chest moved in and out furiously.

“He’s even stronger ‘an me, but I can takes him.”

     Ratskin intercepted Ferbish. “Go no further with this madness, gargoyle. We are less than an hour away from the witching hour, and I promised me missus I’d be home in time fer supper. We have a wee bit to go. Once I open the gate, you have me blessing to hang this Under-realmer by his ankles and let the Balor bats eat him. Until then, we must be on our way. Understand?”

     “Aye that,” Ferbish spat. He yanked Brenden by his wings and hollered, “Grigor, gets the rope.”

Brenden winced in pain.

     “You can’t be serious, Ferbish,” I yelled, so worried they were going to hang poor Brenden. “He didn’t do anything wrong!”

     Ferbish’s eyes almost popped out of his face. “He lied, Miss. He ain’t no fairy and until we know what he is, he will be shackled.”

    I let out a sigh when I realized they were only going to bind Brenden’s hands. “Will you untie him if he proves he’s our friend?”

    “When we gets you to the Middle Realm,” Ferbish offered, “then I’ll let him go. But he stays here. He ain’t going wif you until he confesses who he is.”

   I thought about what I’d seen earlier—how different Brenden looked. No one else seemed to notice the change or they would have said something. But I didn’t want to confess it. Not yet. Otherwise, who knew what Ferbish might do to him?

“Who are you?” I asked, crossing my arms.

    Brenden made no motion to answer. He only hung his head and didn’t look at anyone.

    I knew in my heart that I wasn’t dreaming when I saw Brenden as a totally different person. He definitely didn’t look like a fairy. But what type of race was he? And why wouldn’t he answer? I thought about what I’d read on his body—that he was hated and that people were to show him no mercy. I wondered if he was a criminal. A murderer!

     Letting out my breath, I said, “Fine. Tie him up. Maybe he’ll tell us after his wrists hurt.”

I was upset he wouldn’t confess. But one thing I knew–he had saved me, and when I looked into his eyes, I saw a person who wouldn’t do anything to harm us.

     Finally, after what seemed like several silent hours, we arrived at the edge of a forest. No one said anything but I knew what was in everyone’s mind. Did we have a traitor among us? I didn’t want to believe it.

    An icy wind whipped through my clothing, sending shivers down my body as I spied the gate. By that time, I’d put on my hood, not wanting anyone to see my un-shrouded self. The gate actually looked like a fence in one of those haunted house movies. No one would be able to climb over it.

    Thankfully, we were free from the mist and Pigeon went back to her shy ways at the back of our pack.

    With a jingle and a rusty clang, Ratskin clicked open the gate.

    I glanced at Francisco and he shook his head like we shouldn’t go in there. I agreed, but what could we do? It was Brenden’s plan, and I didn’t have another way out of this never-ending dark world.

    As if on cue, the sky began to redden like the opening of a deep wound.

Ratskin gave us a really creepy look. What the hell was going on?

    
A man came out and greeted Ratskin, giving him a pouch and a friendly pat on the arm. The shifty eyed man cackled and said, “The witching hour is upon us. Farewell, Ratskin, and do send me compliments to ye lovely wife.”

     Ratskin nodded and ran off without a good bye or even a nod to us. Nothing.

     “Good bye to you,too,” Holly yelled after him, waving.

     Francisco said to Brenden, “Dude, you’re not seriously asking us to go in there with that strange guy, are you?”

    As the sky grew darker, bathing us in the Under Realm eerie red light of dusk, Brenden swallowed, not saying anything. My hair stood on end. I didn’t like the frightened look on Brenden’s face.

Happy New Year! May 2019 be the best ever!

I’m out of town so the next update won’t happen until next week,

Monday, January 7th. 

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18 thoughts on “Chapter Twenty: Gilly’s Trap”

  1. See now that’s the best thing to do before a vacation: put an eerie red filter over the last image. 😉 Hope you get all the weed/hookers/french fries with peanut sauce in Amsterdam that this crew wishes they had.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Gah! I get so frustrated at the end of these chapters. This story is like reading a really, really good book you never want to end. I’m enjoying all the twists, turns and surprises you’re weaving into this. I don’t know what to think of Brendan anymore. But my gut tells me he’s a good guy no matter what he did or didn’t do… I think… lol See? 🙂 Anyway, Happy New Year’s Eve! You’re going on vacation to Amsterdam? Lucky Lady! How did I miss that? Oh well, have fun!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Sorry for the cliffhanger! I’m so glad you’re liking the story! 😊 Brenden…you’ll find out what’s really going on with him in a few chapters. ☺️ And omg…Amsterdam on New Years Eve is the place to be! The whole city erupts in fireworks. Crazy and fun!

      Like

  3. All these cliffhangers, damn it 😭

    I wonder if part of Brenden’s curse is why doesn’t allow him to tell the truth 🤔 I understand Athena’s reaction though. Brenden has kept a lot of secrets so far… Still dying to know if my elf theory is correct! 😂

    Have a blast in Amsterdam! ❤️ And Happy New Year too! 2019 is already destined to be epic for me hehe hopefully yours is too! ❤️❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I like how you’re thinking about the effects of Brenden’s curse…but you’ll understand what’s going on with him and why he needs to hide things soon. Elf? Lol! 🦹‍♂️

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! Am having a blast! We want to come to Amsterdam every New Year’s Eve! It beats New York or anywhere in the US. We have too many restrictions on fireworks. The Dutch know how to ring in the new year!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I got chill bumps at the end. I suspect some of Athenaks thoughts about Benden are right. He may be a criminal, but I bet he actually did whatever for good reasons. Like a Robin Hood maybe. He is scared though because he may have a bounty on his head. So many ideas about what might happen. But I did get chill bumps at the end. Can’t wait for more! ❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ohhhh, I’m so glad the ending had that effect (I had to split this chapter and hoped it wasn’t too awkward.) Poor Brenden…lots of possibilities on what he did to receive that curse. And love where you’re headed on why he might be scared…❤️❤️❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Another great chapter; glad I get to keep reading to see what happens next. I had some issues seeing the pictures about halfway through the chapter. Not sure if it’s my internet or the site. 😦 I tried reloading a few times but was unsuccessful. Could you please take a quick peek to see if all the pictures load properly when you view the chapter? I’d like to come back and have another look to see what I’ve missed. Thanks!

    A belated Happy New Year to you! Sounds like you enjoyed it!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey, Lily–

      Sorry about that. If you look at it on your computer or not in the app, the pictures come out fine. I tried to repost but I suspect the app is the problem. I hate the apple WP app. It doesn’t load pictures well at all and I try not to use it when I’m on my phone or ipad. Unfortunately, since my stories are pic heavy, most iphones and ipads have trouble downloading.

      Hopefully, you can re-view it because the pics will help it make sense.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks for trying. Unfortunately, I’ve tried everything at my disposal, with no luck. I’m viewing the post directly on your site (https://wish-caster.com/2018/12/30/chapter-twenty-gillys-trap/) using Chrome on my laptop PC, tried using MS Edge, the WP reader on my laptop and WP app on my iPhone. It’s all the same. I even rebooted my PC to see if that would help. Perhaps I’ll try again another day to see if my issue resolves itself. If you have any other ideas, just let me know.

        Like

        1. I’ve fixed it, so please go back and look at it to make sure. What happened was I had some pics that had the same name and it confused WP. So I went back and renamed them. Thank you so much for telling me!

          Liked by 1 person

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