ThirtyMature

“Thank you, Mum,” whispered Chelsea.

“I trusted Nathan. I really did. Now I never want to see his face again,” Emma said truthfully.

“You don’t mean that.”

“I do. If he ever sets foot in this house again I’ll call the police,” she promised.

Chelsea nodded and walked past her. Her footsteps on the stairs echoed through the otherwise silent house. She shut her door and sank to the floor. She needed to talk to somebody, but Beth was gone forever, Azrael wasn’t even in this world and she didn’t have Asmodeus’s number, if he even had a phone. There was no one to call for help, for advice.

“Chelsea?” asked a small voice the other side of the door.

“What?”

“Can I come in?” It was her mother, Emma.

Chelsea stood up and opened the door a crack.

“What do you want?” she asked.

“Just to talk. Can I come in?” she asked again.

Chelsea opened the door fully and went to sit on her bed. Emma closed the door and sat beside her.

“Do you love Nathan?” she asked.

“I don’t know.”

“Well I hope you do, seeing as you’re pregnant with his baby– It is his, isn’t it?”

Chelsea nodded. “But it’s not just one, it’s three.”

Triplets?!” Chelsea nodded again. “Okay, sorry, just a shock to hear that my daughter’s first pregnancy – which has arrived far too early – is triplets. But that’s not what I came here to talk about. Nathan... is a lovely boy but he isn’t who he says he is.”

“I know.”

“Oh.”

“He told me.”

“About time,” Emma muttered. “What’s he told you?”

“Everything, I hope. And where he left blanks, Asmodeus filled them in.”

“Asmodeus?” Emma exclaimed. “I want you to stay away from him; he’s very dangerous”

“I know he’s dangerous but he wouldn’t hurt me.”

“Oh my God, he’s in love with you?”

“I don’t know.”

“What about you? Do you love him?”

“I don’t know.”

“You’ve landed yourself in the middle of an argument that’s been going on for millennia.”

“Not anymore, they’re trying to get along.”

“Why?” asked Emma, bewildered.

“There’s a prophecy. They want to protect me.”

“I know the prophecy but how do you know it’s about you?”

Chelsea paused. “Doesn’t matter,” she said quickly.

“Tell me what you did, Chelsea.”

I didn’t do anything.”

“Then what did Azrael do? Or Asmodeus?”

“Asmodeus asked the Devil.”

Emma stood up suddenly and rounded on her youngest daughter. “Where you there?” she demanded.

“Yes?”

“Oh my God, you could have died!”

“I knew!” she lied. “I just had to know whether it was about me.”

“Okay,” said Emma, trying to calm herself down. “Have you met anybody else?”

“No...”

Who?”

“Um, Gabriel, Raphael, Michael,” she said.

“Who else?”

“Well, Satan, a Hellhound, Leviathan, Lucifer and Selene.”

“A Hellhound, right. Who and what is Selene?”

“She’s an elf.”

“A Wood Elf, I hope.” Chelsea didn’t respond. “A Dark Elf? Right, okay. So you’ve met four Princes, the four Archangels, a Hellhound and a Dark Elf.”

“What’s a succubus?” Chelsea asked.

“Oh God, this just gets worse. They’re female incubi. Incubi are Demons that sleep with and kill mortals, created by Asmodeus himself.”

“Oh.”

“You know more than I expected,” said Emma.

“How do you know all this?” Chelsea asked.

“I should have started with that. I’m an Oracle. Or was. Azrael got rid of it for me. He said he was asked to protect you, but by who he wouldn’t say.”

“I think I know.”

“Who?”

“I think it was Dad.”

Emma smiled sadly. “Probably.”

She hugged her daughter and sighed. Emma still missed her husband, Michael; it was only five months ago that he’d died suddenly. Under her arm, she felt a kick.

“They’re really getting on each other’s nerves,” whispered Chelsea, to no one in particular.

Emma laughed quietly. “They probably are. How tight are your clothes getting?”

“Quite.”

“Let’s go shopping. Would you like that?”

Chelsea nodded. “Yeah.”

The End

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