Elements by Nia Markos – Chapter Ten
That would make Aidan a prince, I almost laughed out loud. No wonder he was so arrogant, so full of himself. He had a lifetime of being a royal. People must fall all over themselves to please him. I wished I was anywhere but here. I did not belong with these people. The last thing I wanted was to be involved in any of this. I wanted out. With every last bit of strength I possessed, I avoided looking at him. It did little to calm my growing panic. I could still feel him staring at me. This must be a dream, a nightmare. I would wake up soon.
She is going to lose it. The thought stopped me cold. Who said that? My eyes darted across the faces of the people around me, landing finally on Aidan’s. Shock showed on his face, mirroring mine. It was him. How was that possible? I don’t know. I heard in my head. Get out. I screamed back at him in my head.
“Alexa, I need to explain some things to you.” My mother’s voice cut into my fraught emotions. My heart was racing. The urge to flee, to escape was building. Just a little longer. I heard his voice in my head again. I glared at him for ignoring me and continuing to communicate with me in my head. Turning my attention to my mother, she reached across the space that separated us, taking my hand in hers.
“I know this is a lot to take in. We need to speak privately.” She spoke softly, trying to reassure me. Continuing this conversation was not what I wanted to do at the moment. I needed some time to myself. I was not ready for more.
“Let’s take a break. I’m sure Alexa needs some time to absorb what she has learned so far.” Aidan offered me a small respite. Grateful he spoke out loud this time, I rose from my seat. Bet stood up to follow me. I put my hand on her arm, stopping her. I needed time alone.
The garden, you can be alone there. My feet froze as the thought intruded into my brain. My back was to him, but I accepted the offer without comment. He knew I had no idea where I could go. I continued to the patio doors, pulling them open, stepping out into the fading light of the sun. It was early evening. The cool breeze was welcome as it brushed my face. The path led out into a small garden lined with different colored rose bushes. In the middle, I found a bench and sat down to think.
I was lost where to begin. Eliana’s tale was astonishing, but I did not trust her. Her attitude towards me left me baffled. Why did I feel resentment from her? An overwhelming certitude flooded me that she was hiding something. If I were to believe her, I was to be some catalyst to fixing their world. How was I supposed to do that? I did not remember half of what she said; my mind could not absorb her words fully.
I breathed in slowly, the roses infusing me with their rich scent. Should I go along with this? I must pay attention, see what else they have to say and then decide what to do. Would it be possible to escape this? Aidan’s mother was what was worrying me most. She had an agenda. I was sure of it. There was coldness in her, leaving me to wonder about her reaction to me.
“Alexa.” My mother cut into my thoughts. I turned to look at her. I had no clue what to say to her.
“I know this is a lot to take in. This isn’t how I wanted you to find out. I wish you never had to know, but it’s too late now.” She took a seat beside me.
“You were always the best part of me and your father. I wanted to protect you from all of this. Maybe I should have spoken sooner. I can’t undo any of it.” I knew she felt pain from her decisions. Her words were laced with it. What I needed now was the truth, all of it.
“Mom, I think it’s time I knew about us.” Her response to my statement was a long sigh.
“Yes, it is. What Eliana said about Meredith is true. She is our ancestor. Not much is known about her, other than she was a powerful seer. A witch, sorceress. Those are the names others use for what we are. Her history is strange in that we don’t know where she came from. There are no records of where she was born or where she grew up. She appeared in Alba, what is now Scotland, in the year 823. There was a man claiming her as his daughter, but no other relatives. It is doubtful this man was really her father. She was taken in as an apprentice by another witch who was named Sara. Sara and Eliana were friends for many years. It was Sara who warned her of Meredith’s captivity by Elsam. He tortured and forced Meredith to do his bidding. What we are living through today is because Meredith set us on this course. I want to caution you. I don’t know exactly what Meredith did. Eliana knows, but she has altered the spell somehow. Alexa, I need you to be careful. I feel there is more going on that I don’t know about.”
“I don’t trust her, Mom.” I voiced my opinion.
“I know. There is more she will not share. Tread carefully. You have within you more power than I thought possible. I think you already started to feel some of it. Somehow it has awakened early.” Her statement was the perfect opportunity to tell her about Aidan. How we were able to speak telepathically. How I could feel what he was feeling.
Not yet. Wait until we have spoken. Unbidden, his words filled my head. I swore inside at his intrusion. Leave me alone! I was incensed at his listening in.
“Mom, what is going to happen on my birthday?” I asked her instead, wondering if he was listening in on our whole conversation.
“At the moment of your birth, all the powers you hold within you will come alive. I can’t say for certain what they will be. It’s different for all of us. My talents are manifestation, reading the near future and protection spells. I also have the ability to heal. You, I believe, will have many more, and need help learning to control them.”
My birthday was less than two months away. I realized my senses were heightened recently. This strange link to Aidan was somehow part of it.
“What will happen now?” The unknown had me worried.
“Let’s go see what they have been discussing.” My mom pulled me up.