Something New Ch. 01byloumey1©
Just a head's up –all plot for this chapter. I am planning scenes for upcoming chapters, but it will probably be chapter 3 when they first start to appear. Also this is my first story, so constructive feedback is welcome.
This story is copyrighted, please do not use any part of it without permission. Thanks!
The night passed, peaceful and deep and Lisa was getting a good night's sleep for the first time in weeks. Needless to say she was not happy when she suddenly woke to full alert. She sighed as soon as she recognized the reason. He was standing by her bedroom window, slightly glowing and transparent and dressed in his full medicine regalia. He saw that she was now awake and spoke to her.
"A summons is coming. You will need the full kit. Also, put on the pendant, it will be useful." Having delivered his message, he vanished. After all, it was a waste of energy to remain visible for longer than necessary, and both he and Lisa had a pragmatic streak.
Lisa sighed and got out of bed. So much for a good night's rest, she thought as she stumbled towards her bathroom, dragged a brush through her dark hair, and swiped a toothbrush across her teeth. She washed her face to help clear her bleary hazel eyes and grabbed a hair-tie to hide the fact that her hair was frizzy and sticking out in some unusual directions. Throwing on some clothes, she was about to head to the workroom when the phone rang.
"Lisa, it's Shari" Lisa's eyes widened a bit at the tone in her friends voice. Whatever was happening Shari was very worried, and Shari was someone that was always calm under fire.
"Shari, what's the matter?"
"It's Thom, something's wrong and I can't tell what it is. We were walking out to the clearing, he needed to do his monthly thing, and he suddenly got light headed and started going into shock. I got him back to the house, and he fainted. I haven't been able to wake him since. I've left him with my sister and am coming to get you. I'm about 10 minutes away."
"No problem, I'll be ready." Lisa replied.
Shari used to be an ER nurse, so Lisa knew that the fear radiating in her voice was well founded. The problem was that Thom was a channel that had been blasted open through drug use a few years ago. In his case it was not by choice; a former roommate thought it would be funny to 'loosen him up a bit' and dosed him. Unfortunately Thom happened to be highly sensitive to drugs of any kind, and ended up with an overdose. Thom had been lucky to survive. At least the moron had enough sense to call the paramedics, Lisa thought to herself.
Due to the rather violent nature of the way his gift was opened, Thom had some unique problems that the medical world was unable to cope with. Every month, Thom would perform a ritual designed to put limits on his ability to channel so that it didn't flood and overwhelm him. Doing that ritual allowed him to live a normal life and to hold down a job, rather than descending into madness which he had been well on his way to doing when Lisa first met him.
Lisa frowned, she had major warning bells going off over the timing of Thom's collapse. Her instincts were saying that it wasn't a coincidence that this happened before Thom had a chance to perform the ritual.
Lisa went to her workroom and grabbed the largest of her bags which contained a full working kit with everything she might need. She double checked the contents and added a few other items, and then grabbed the pendant her guide had shown her earlier and put it on. It was a piece her mother had given her, an equal armed cross made of silver, with a center disk that rotated. On one side of the disk the artist had inlaid a pyramid inside a square, inside a circle, and on the other side he had inlaid a spiral. It was a potent piece, particularly good for gathering and concentrating energy, but one that matched her energy so well, she didn't even notice it when she was wearing it.
Just as she finished her preparations she heard her dog bark to alert her that someone was approaching. Lisa acknowledged her large Rottweiler mix, and Sasha immediately quieted down. A moment later there was an urgent knock, and Lisa opened the door.
Standing on her doorstep in the chilly night air was Shari looking rather frantic. Lisa grabbed her coat and her bag, gave Sasha a quick pat on the head, locked up, and got into Shari's old model Jeep Cherokee.
Shari and Thom lived up in the mountains, and required four-wheel drive. Lisa drove a Jeep as well, but the road to Shari's place at night was difficult for those that were not very familiar with it, hence Shari driving down to get her. Shari took off as soon as they were in the car, and Lisa settled in for the drive, turning the situation over in her head.
"Shari, how close are we to the dirt turnoff?"
"About ten minutes. You gonna journey?" Shari replied, being familiar with Lisa and how she worked by now.
"Yes, I want to try and get some more information."
Shari nodded and Lisa settled herself into the seat, reclining it slightly. Lisa slowed her breathing and shifted her awareness into the spirit world. Finding herself immediately accompanied by Horse, she requested information and assistance on Thom's condition, and was taken to one of her guides. This was not the same guide that had woken her earlier. Instead, an Egyptian priest appeared before her, and she nodded her head in respect to him. He smiled and gestured for her to approach a large scroll resting on a stone altar.
"This has happened before. Look." He said to her, and moved aside so she could see the scroll. It was almost like watching a movie. She saw a woman who was obviously a channel. Next she saw the woman walking through halls. A shadowy figure was waiting, he darted her with a blowgun and then disappeared. The woman collapsed. Next she saw the woman in a near catatonic state with people taking care of her and trying to heal her. After a period of time, the woman finally awoke and seemed to be back to normal. As she continued to watch, though, things changed. The woman no longer was physically ill, but it was obvious that she was no longer herself. There was something using her, and not for good ends. She caused quite a bit of damage before she was stopped. Unfortunately stopping her had also involved killing her.
Lisa looked up from the scroll at her guide, raised an eyebrow and waited for him to speak to give her an option other than death.
He gave her a small smile of amusement at her expression. "This is what will happen if you do not succeed in stopping this now. Know also that the one responsible prefers the shadows. You cannot stop this on your own and you will need assistance. I suggest you use the clearing, it may as well be a Circle."
With that advice, Lisa felt herself being pulled back. She settled back into her body and opened her eyes. Just in time, she thought, there's the turnoff now. Shari slowed and made a hard right, and the jeep immediately started to vibrate with the dirt road. Shari was going a bit faster than normal, and it was making Lisa's teeth rattle. Lisa understood completely, though, and knew that the ride wouldn't be much longer at this point.
Lisa thought about what her guide had just told her. She was grateful for the warning of the true nature of what she faced with Thom. She also found it interesting that he had deemed the clearing to be a Circle. He was basically telling her that she needed help from the Fae, and that they could be contacted there.
"Shari, did you happen to see if Thom had a puncture wound anywhere?"
Shari looked a bit startled, "What, you mean like a snake or spider bite? We're much too high an elevation for rattle snakes, and there aren't any other poisonous snakes in the area. Besides he was wearing his hiking boots, it takes a lot to get through those things. I thought about spider bite but the symptoms don't match. Widows and Recluses both cause significant pain and markings on the skin around the bite. Except for the fact that he's unconscious, he's perfectly normal. I gave him a quick check for bite marks of any kind once I got back to the house, but I didn't go over every inch. Whatever is going on is not normal, Lisa. You know I worked ER, I've seen just about everything and this doesn't match anything. That and my gut are what made me call you instead of an ambulance."
Lisa nodded. "It's possible he may have had the skin punctured, but probably not with anything standard or traditional. If that's the case, and the item is still in or on him, it would be much better if nobody touched it. Also, when we get to your place, I am going to need to go to the clearing first."
Shari nodded, keeping her attention on the road. "Do you need anything that you haven't already brought?"
Lisa mentally reviewed the contents of her bag. "Umm... Do you have any whiskey?"
Shari seemed a bit startled by the request, but after long association with Lisa she didn't question it. She knew that Lisa didn't make frivolous requests. "Umm, we actually have some Jameson a friend of ours gave us last week."
Lisa smiled, Jameson was Irish whiskey, and the Fae seemed to prefer either Scotch or Irish. "Perfect, I'll need to take that with some glasses up to the clearing with me."
They lapsed into silence for the rest of the ride up, Lisa getting herself prepared, Shari concentrating on the road. Finally they reached the sharply inclined driveway that lead up to Shari and Thom's place. Shari gunned the engine to get a bit of a running start, and they bounced up to the top of the hill, where Shari and Thom's house sat nestled in the trees. Both women got out of the car, and went into the house. Shari checked on Thom, who was in their bedroom with her sister, Marianne, and then came back out and went to grab the Jameson and some glasses from the kitchen and handed them to Lisa.
"It would be best for you to stay here for the time being," Lisa said to Shari.
Shari nodded, "Do you need a flashlight to find the trail?"
"No thanks, I'll be ok, there's enough moonlight out there for me to see by." Lisa didn't want to have her vision limited by the flashlight. Between the possibility of a person or persons with ill intent out there, and the mischievous nature of the Fae, it would be asking for trouble to use a flashlight.
Lisa stepped outside, extended her senses and called on some of her spirit allies to keep watch in case anyone was lurking out there. After a short walk, she came to a natural clearing that was almost perfectly circular. She stopped at the edge put down the whiskey and glasses, and placed her hands together in front of her, bowed, and requested permission to enter.
She felt the energy of the clearing shift and grant her permission. She stepped in, and began to set things up. The clearing itself already had its own boundaries and protections, so she just requested that they be active. Lisa then opened the whiskey, and put it and the glasses center. During the entire process she felt eyes on her, but she knew they belonged to the Fae rather than anyone lingering that should not be there. She also felt some agitation from them, and assumed that it probably had to do with the attack on Thom earlier.
Lisa stepped away from the center of the circle and said, "Welcome friends, I come bearing gifts if you wish to partake. I ask your assistance undoing that which was done to Thom earlier this evening."
Lisa heard light muttering from the edges, they were definitely agitated by the events earlier. She felt the attention shift and focus, and there was suddenly a tall, slender, elfin looking man with long, white blond hair and vibrant green eyes. A Sidhe, Lisa thought to herself not particularly surprised since she half expected they would be the ones to respond. She assessed his simple appearance, and realized he was extremely powerful. The more powerful the Sidhe, the less they tended to broadcast it.
Whoever did this has made some powerful enemies, Lisa thought to herself. Sidhe, out of all the Fae, were the ones you least wanted to offend. They tended to be light hearted and approachable, but if provoked, their anger and punishments tended to be quite ... harsh, not to mention creative.
"Healer, We have heard your need and offer Our assistance. The shadow that entered Our lands is not permitted. We will demand no payment from you. Your service in this matter is sufficient payment."
Lisa kept her face serene and bowed to him. Obviously he was royalty; the fact that he was not demanding payment of some sort also meant that they felt they had responsibility to rectify the situation. She was happy about that since she already owed them, and she didn't want to increase her debt. "Your aid is accepted with gratitude. By what title would one such as yourself prefer to be addressed by one such as myself?"
His eye flickered in slight amusement. She had neatly sidestepped any status related problems between them. "Our full titles would be cumbersome for work that needs to be streamlined. While Our full title honors Our past, We must also consider the needs of the future. You may address me as Tiernan.'"
Lisa heard a bit of startled muttering from the edges of the clearing when he gave her that name. Typically the more powerful the Sidhe, the longer their title. For one such as this to allow her to use such a short title was more than a little startling. Lisa deliberately bowed again. She knew it was not necessary, but she wished to show further respect. "I am honored to be graced with the presence of one so wise." Lisa gestured to the whiskey. "Please join me in acknowledging our accord."
"Before we seal the bond, there is one other I wish to join us in this endeavor." Tiernan stated, dropping the royal 'We.' "This one is unique, and may be somewhat startling to you."
Interesting choice of words, thought Lisa, and made a mental note of his phrasing. "If you vouch for this one, I am willing to meet them." Lisa had no doubt that Tiernan wanted this to succeed, but she also knew that the Sidhe never did anything for just one reason, and that was triply true of royalty. By making him vouch for this third person, he was personally responsible if they did anything problematic for her personally.
Tiernan's eyes again flashed in mild amusement. "I so vouch for Max Tau."
"Then Max Tau is welcome to this circle." Lisa replied formally. As soon as she uttered those words, someone stepped out from the shadows of the forest, and into the circle. As he came forward, Lisa noticed how fluidly he moved. Interestingly, it was not the boneless grace of a cat; rather it was the gliding smoothness of a snake. He was not slender like the Sidhe, but he wasn't overbuilt either. He seemed to be a happy medium of toned muscle on a normal size frame. Something about him, though, conveyed a sense of immense power and strength. His hair was reddish brown, and cropped very short, but his eyes were what really captured her. They seemed to keep changing through different shades of gray, sometimes looking more silver, sometimes more charcoal, and through every color in between. They seemed to hold a quiet strength and a depth that piqued her interest. She felt drawn in by those eyes, and found herself surprised at her reaction. However she had work to do, so she put it aside to deal with later.
Calmly Lisa nodded her head to Max, and said "Welcome, Max Tau, vouched for by Tiernan. Before we sit together, I would know what you are."
He smiled, "That is reasonable." he replied in a soft voice that seemed to have over and undertones that echoed through the land around them. "I am Dragon Touched, there are not many of us." He replied. Then, taking note of Lisa's blank expression he added, "It is easier to show than to explain, if you would permit me?" he said to her, tapping a finger to his temple to indicate he meant to show her directly, mind to mind. "I give my word that I will do nothing beyond that."
Lisa got the deep sense that Max's word was his bond, absolutely and irrevocably. She nodded her head in acceptance, and felt a soft touch on her mind. She allowed him in and he showed her enough to gain a basic understanding. He was quite literally touched by dragons in that they had chosen, with his consent, to alter him so that he gained certain abilities. It seemed that what he gained was designed to enhance and support the skills he already had. He had been a great warrior before accepting the offer of the dragons, and the gifts they gave him enhanced his ability. She caught the gifts of longevity, strength, agility, endurance, heightened senses, and something else that she couldn't quite see yet. Max must not have intended her to see quite so much, though, because she caught a startled feeling, and he immediately withdrew.
Lisa smiled a little at his surprise. "Max Tau, I greet you and thank you for your presence and your explanation. You are welcome here. Will you join us in our endeavor?"
"My aid is granted freely." He replied again, in that curiously soft voice which still echoed through everything around them.
"Then please join us to seal our agreement." Lisa replied as she knelt on the ground, opened the whiskey, and poured a glass for each of them. Tiernan sank down to the ground on her left in the inhumanly elegant and graceful fashion of all Sidhe. Max dropped down to her right, and almost seemed to be coiled and relaxed at the same time.
Lisa handed each a glass, and proceeded to sip hers first. Tiernan and Max then followed, sipping their drinks as well. Once each had finished their whiskey, and set their glass back down in the center, they rose as one and began to walk back down to the clearing. The remainder of the whiskey was left in the circle as a gift. Lisa knew it would be gone by morning, and Shari could go and retrieve her glasses tomorrow.