Blood of Passage: Part Eleven
She ducked low, stabbing the male in his side; a torrent of blood spilled over her fingers, so thick it was near black. The male dropped and she struck high as the next male came at her, right in his throat. He collapsed, clawing at his throat, gasping for breath that would not come.
She spun, kicking the next male square in the chest, hard enough she could hear ribs crack beneath her foot. Male after male went down and she refused to feel guilt over it, not when they could have just left them alone.
Fists connected to throats, vertebrae crunching under her knuckles. They collapsed to their knees, choking for air and were conscious until her knee connected with their faces.
Male after male froze in their places and she stared each one down, “Leave us alone and we’ll leave you alone. If not, you’ll end up just like the others.” Conflicting emotions rose in their faces, battling their instincts to take her out as a threat. Do it, she thought. And you die.
They walked away and the bloodlust began to fade in her body. “Bring him over here.” She knelt down, cleaning the blood from her hands and ripped strip after strip of fabric from fallen males’ shirts.
Cyrian and Zev stood over them, guarding them as she moved the hair from in front of his eyes, the hazel was filled with such agony and bone deep fear, her heart clenched. His pupils were wide in response to the pain and his breathing shallow but he was stable; his Illyrian healing knitting over his wounds. She dipped the straps into the water before wiping the blood from his skin. She tried to block out the feel of his blood, the feeling that her hands would be stained forever.
He hissed at the contact of the cold water. “Maze-”
“Shush, don’t speak.” She cleaned wound after wound. They were closing too fast; the debris were getting healed over and- “Adrien, I have to open some of these to clean them.”
“Just do it,” he groaned.
A numbness rolled through his veins, the rush of feeling Nate gave him started to ebb away; His need to find and protect Adrien from threats, and Nate, were the only things that fought his instinct to isolate himself; a feeling he had grown accustomed to his entire life.
Males surrounded them; at least twenty of them. Unsurprising, considering they were near a water source. Adrenaline rushed through him, burning away his Depression. Beside him, Nate grinned.“I told you I’d need you to protect me, Baylor.”
He rolled his eyes, fixing a look on the largest male; he stood several inches taller and wider than him; almost dwarfing him and Nate both. “No one has to die, Karis. Leave us alone and we’ll let you live.”
“Big words,” Karis crossed his arms, grinning. “Considering you are outnumbered and weaponless.”
“We both know I could beat you without one.” Bay crossed his arms, “The Commander has trained me since I was eight. Personally.”
“Special treatment,” Karis snarled. “Everyone knows that you’d be ranked at the bottom without Cassian there to give you an advantage. You don’t deserve your rank.”.
Bay hesitated, his words sinking in deeply, rattling his confidence. Nate glanced at him before turning his dark eyes on Karis. “You’re just pissed that Baylor can kick your ass.”
The male smirked, “Sticking up for your boyfriend, Nate? I’m shocked.”
Bay ignored the taunt; his burning ears betraying him; Karis’s grin grew. ‘What do you say, Karis? One on one? If you kill me, you can finally prove that you are, in fact, better than me. After all, Cassian isn’t here to give me the advantage.”
Nate frowned. He ignored it, his eyes on Karis. The male laughed, “I’ll enjoy killing you, Baylor.”
“You go after Adrien and I’ll meet up with you,” Bay said.
Nate glared at Karis, “I’m not leaving you with this ugly-ass waste of space.”
Bay forced Nate to look at him; His eyes were black; the brown engulfed by his pupils. “Yes you are. Adrien is your brother. He needs you.”
Karis crooned, “Trouble in paradise?”.
“Go,” he ordered Nate. “I will force you.”
Nate rose a brow. he could almost see the challenge in them but instead he said, “I don’t want to leave you. He doesn’t fight fairly.”
He almost kissed him, his hesitancy noticed by every male; snickers filled the cavernous space. Fuck this; they already knew and he was planning on coming out anyways. He summoned his courage and brought Nate’s lips to his, a sound of surprise escaped Nate; Whistles sounded. He parted from him. “Please.”
“I fucking knew it,” Karis said. “You are a faggot.”
On instinct, he held Nate back from attacking the male. He was used to name calling. He was also used to ignoring it; Nate just broke the person’s face. This was his fight; Karis was his kill.
“I’ll meet up with you after I shatter every bone in his body,” Bay promised.
Nate’s eyebrows were almost to his hairline; he was fighting a grin despite his eyes filled with a burning hatred for the male. “You better.”
Bay turned to Karis, Nate’s steps disappearing behind him. He loosed his shoulders. “You’re going to die, you homophobic piece of shit.”
His fist connected with a throat; the male doubled over coughing blood. “Need help, Tarus?” He ducked, a fist cut in the air, narrowly missing his jaw. His elbow connected to the male’s throat.
Tarus spun, his weapon sinking into a male’s eye. “Nope.” He retracted his weapon, jamming it in the throat of another male. “You sure you don’t need mine?”
Blake snorted, his knee connecting with a male’s groin. A pang of guilt hit him; he ignored it. As the male doubled over his knee hit the male square in the nose; a satisfying crush of the cartilage filled his ears.
He looked around, that was the last of them. “They weren’t even trying.”
Tarus snorted, “You are not a very humble person.”
“What gave it away?” Blake retied his hair back, catching the loose strands from in front of his face. “When you got the best of the best teaching you, you can afford to be a little arrogant. Especially when you can back it up.”
“You ever consider cutting your hair? It would be easier to fight.”
Blake rose his brows, “I think the fuck not.” His shadows picked up Adrien again, his brother was alive and stable, for now. “Let’s go, I pinpointed Adrien.”
It was his own fault. He should never had let Ezekiel near them. He was blinded by his own guilt and gave the male a benefit of the doubt despite sensing the betrayal from a mile off; But now his fear of losing his wings near paralyzed him all because he didn’t kill the male the first chance he got. He will never make that mistake again.
The cool water was keeping him conscious despite his mind wanting to shut down from the pain. His healing blood working against him, forcing Maze to reopen the wounds just so she could clean them properly.
Her dark eyes were vivid with worry and barely restrained anger. It was his own stupidity that put those emotions there. “I’m sorry,” He groaned, trying to not wince at the cut she was making.
She snapped her head up at him, “What could you possibly have to be sorry for?”
Cyrian. Ezekiel. Her hands covered with his blood. “Everything.”
Cyrian snorted behind him. He ignored him, his eyes focused on Maze, her outline fuzzy from trying to stay conscious. He held back a wince as she cut open the wound on his abdomen; it cut from his sternum, down his chest and around his side. It was deep enough he knew it would scar. A reminder of what happened when you gave someone the benefit of the doubt; From being kind.
A torrent of blood spilled over her fingers, so thick it was almost black. A dizziness filled his head, trying to pull him into the darkness.
“Count her freckles.”
He made himself look at Zevakyn; the male’s dark eyes were soft and kind, not something he usually saw in an Illyrian. The war camps, especially the brutal ones, take away a male’s softness and kindness and turn it into a blade ready to kill. Kindness got you killed, just like he almost did.
“Count her freckles,” Zevakyn said, motioning to Maze. “It’ll keep you awake.”
He turned back to her, wincing at the pain slicing through his neck. Her eyes were trained on his wound, her lashes so dark and thick they casted shadows over her cheekbones. Her freckles splayed across her cheeks and over her nose. They were what drew him to her in the first place.
Despite it being nearly ten minutes later, Nate could still feel Baylor’s lips on his. When he kissed him in front of all those males it surprised the starlight out of him. He knew nearly everything about Baylor; Where he went when he was depressed and isolated himself; what he did when he was manic and nearly got himself killed. Why he climbed trees when he could just fly up the branches still puzzled him.
But Baylor, Baylor, kissed him in front of nearly thirty people. He who wasn’t outwardly affectionate with anyone in public, who was so serious about his training and everything he did… When he wanted to make a statement he surely knew how to make one that everyone would remember. He didn’t just come out he barrelled his way out.
The cheering from the males still echoed off the walls. Anxiety jumped through him and he wanted to go back to help or at least cheer; but Baylor was right. He needed to get to Adrien.
He wasn’t worried about Baylor dying…well maybe a little bit. Baylor was second ranked for a reason and it wasn’t because Cassian raised him. He knew that Baylor wanted to be a high ranking officer, just as Cassian was. His ear twitched; picking up crunching and cheering followed by pure silence.
He forced himself to continue forward towards the ravine, an eye on each male he crossed paths with. He was ninety percent sure that Adrien was at the other water source but they needed to be sure. His shadows picked up the fighting as he kept moving. He was fighting a grin; Baylor was kicking Karis’ ass. He was going to kill him too. Baylor gave him a chance to walk away and the stupid fuck didn’t take it.
He pulled his hair back, getting his hair out of his face before he drank from the ravine. The water was cold enough he could feel it shock its way down his throat. He drunk deeply before continuing forward.
Thank the Cauldron the males were leaving him alone. There faces were gaunt, some of their eyes haunted or hardened by their brutal fighting. He kept loose, just incase someone got an idea to attack.
A few of the males started shifting glances between each other and him. He stiffened, his instincts already preparing to fight his way out. “If we’re going to fight, I suggest we get it over with.”
His shadows picked up someone behind him. He turned, wringing his hands. A male barreled at him and he sidestepped, pulling the male by his collar into the ravine. Two other males reached for him and he used their weight against them, pushing one male into the other, the impact had them into the ravine right along with the first one.“Anyone else?!”
Sorry this took so long. School’s been a bitch and I’ve had serious writer’s block. Please, please leave a comment XO