Chapter 57: Reconnaissance
Marko was still arguing with the spell weaver, when a bang sounded in their midst. The group ducked, looking around for a shooter. They were bewildered until Janet drew their attention to a red dot of light which suddenly materialized, right in front of her. They watched it grow steadily into a small pulsating orb, that momentarily hovered in place, before weaving and darting among them. Marko protectively pushed Janet and Andrea behind him.
The pudgy spell weaver snickered derisively at Marko’s wariness and the orb flitted into his face. Pointedly ignoring it he said,” as you can see. Ted and I have things under control down here.” He swatted the orb away and it zipped back into his face. Marko smiled despite himself. The spell weaver sighed irritably and brought his hands up on either side of the orb, murmuring a quick binding incantation to encase it. Marko shook his head.
“I don’t think that’s a good idea.”
“Is that so? Well, I don’t really care what you think. You’re not a Doorkeeper. So, your opinion doesn’t matter.”
“I’m pretty sure that’s a fairy.”
“That makes no difference to me. Only a low level fairy would manifest this insignificantly small. Besides, it’s invading the Doorkeeper compound and making a nuisance of itself. It needs to be taught some manners.”
The spell weaver laughed again, watching the orb frantically flitting around inside the invisible trap. It began to emit a frustrated high pitched shriek, which was initially muffled then steadily grew in intensity, until the others reflexively covered their ears. The spell weaver held out for as long as he could, sneering at them. Eventually, he gave in to the ratcheting pain in his eardrums and released the orb from its prison.
He was caught off guard and ducked awkardly, when the orb charged at him. It was their turn to laugh at the orb’s small measure of justice. Then it began singeing him. They laughed uneasily at the tatto of burn marks appearing on his face and hands. His irritated shouts became startled barks of pain. The others instinctively backed away watching with wide eyes as the orb suddenly shrank and flew inside his ear. The spell weaver was momentarily dumbstruck, his eyes growing wide.
The group looked on helplessly, as he began clawing at his ear and screaming in agony. They looked to Ted, expecting him to spring into action, dismayed to see that he appeared to be immobilized by fear. Marko tried to get his attention. The spell weaver was transfixed by his partner’s suffering. Marko stalked over to Ted and grabbed him by the arms, shaking him roughly.
“Come on man, do something!”
“I…I don’t know what to do,” blurted Ted.
“Isn’t there some sort of spell you could cast to get rid of the damn thing?”
“Not without hurting Andrew. It’s inside of his head!”
The agonized screams abruptly stopped and Andrew dropped to the floor with blood dripping from his ears. They were alarmed by his stillness. His eyes were open and staring sightlessly at the ceiling. He had stopped breathing. They were cautiously approaching his body, when the orb suddenly reappeared. Ted dropped into a defensive stance, knees bent and arms raised for spell weaving. The others held their breath, bracing for an attack. Instead, the orb shot straight up above their heads and disappeared. Ted heaved a sigh of relief.
“Oh, thank the Lord. I’m so glad that thing is gone.”
“It isn’t gone. It went upstairs. I think it’s conducting reconnaissance of the compound. You better get on the radio and warn the others,” Marko snapped.
“What are you saying?”
“Let me ask you something. Are there enchanted artifacts from the Unseelie Court in the Doorkeeper vault?”
“Maybe…I really don’t know. Sage is the one who inventories the antiquities vault and he’s in no condition to even answer that question right now. Why?”
“I think that little fairy is a scout for the Unseelie Court and it’s going to report back to them. It’s only a matter of time, before they come for us.”
“What’s the Unseelie Court,” asked Andrea.
“A troop of traveling fairies.”
“That doesn’t sound so bad. You mean like Tinkerbell?”
“Not even close. The Unseelie Court fairies are the damned who dwell in cursed places. They’re basically marauding demon’s with wings. I think Mukesh has enlisted them with promises of powerful enchanted weapons and jewels from the antiquities vault. Ted, tell the other spell weavers to hurry up and get their asses down here!”