The doctors did want me to stay in overnight. It was weird sleeping in the hospital. You could tell the doctors and patients were trying to be quiet, but they couldn’t help it. Their shoes kept squeaking on the polished floor. That’s all heard for most of the night. Squeak, squeak, squeak. Then it would stop and I’d hear the hushed whispers of doctors, nurses and cleaners outside.
They seemed loud even though I had the door shut. And I had to have the curtains closed. I don’t like the thought of people pressing their noses up against the window gazing at me nosily. I’d asked Lucifer to shut them shortly after he’d told me the doctors might want to keep me in. I didn’t usually get homesick. Mainly because I haven’t had a home to go back to in years. But, I don’t know. There’s just something about hospitals. Maybe it’s just because I’m alone. Leon took Zen back to the hotel they were staying at. Less chance of the doctors finding out that we had a wolf in the suitcase. And not a normal one at that.
They kept sending me texts though. Kept telling me I was ok. That I’d be out in the morning. That Lucifer had sorted everything out.
And then, at half eleven (I was still unable to sleep) my phone flashed for the fourth time. It wasn’t a number that I recognised. I risked flipping the screen open and looking, I flicked to the end of the text and saw Kane’s name at the bottom. I relaxed a little and scrolled back up to the top of the text. It read: Lucifer thought it’d be best if I sent you this myself. Not that I really care. He could have said it himself, but he said that I better say it to get all the details. I frowned as I read further. Although I am taking you to where the Lord of the Dead is surely going to be resurrected, I need one of my colleagues with me. He knows the area better than me and he may be a valuable asset while we’re fighting him. You probably already know it won’t be easy. And that the place will be crawling with, as you call them Lost Soul s.
P.S. be carefully wouldn’t want you getting hurt all on your own. Princess.
UGH, why was he such an Idiot? What was I? Five? This was because I’d thought that Lost Soul s sneak tactic had been nothing more than a bug bite. I bet the almighty Kane would never make a mistake like that though would he? Ah, what did I care?
I looked back at my phone that I’d thrown roughly on the cabinet next to my bed. I wondered why Kane hadn’t borrowed Lucifer’s phone. Maybe he’d had his own. Maybe he did it just to try and make me worried. Well that failed didn’t it?
I don’t have caller I’D or anything like that. None of us Guardians do. I memorised my contacts, and that wasn’t too hard to do. I don’t have a lot of contacts. And I was good at memorising numbers since we get a new phone every few months. It makes it harder for people to track the phones. We delete all the messages we receive and the call logs. And once we’d finished with them we ditched the mobiles.
Come to think of it, I don’t know exactly how many Guardians there are. Or who recruits them. I’d have to ask Lucifer about that someday.
I chuckled to myself. God, the things you think of when alone, unable to sleep in a busy hospital.
I rolled onto my side to look out the window. The stars comforted me. Leon likes to call me a vampire since I like to sleep till noon during the day and love looking up at the sky and admiring the stars and the moon. I drifted off the sleep though, the starlight flooding my room and bathing me in a beautiful, silvery light…
The next morning though, they asked me lot more questions. How was I feeling? How was the mark the ‘snake’ had given me? Stuff like that. I passed through it all feeling surreal. Out of place.
An hour later, Lucifer and Kane and Leon came to pick me up. Kane still bore the same scornful look. It must be his default state. But they were alone. No sign of Kane’s ‘colleague’ he’d mentioned in his text from lat night.
I leaned up against the receptionist’s desk while Lucifer was talking to the doctors. I turned my attention away from Leon. I was getting bored of talking about how I slept last night. I looked at Kane instead. He was leaning up against the opposite wall with his head down. A serious expression on his face. I frowned back at him, and contemplated whether or not to ask him about his friend.
So, I simply came straight out with it. “So - where’s your buddy you mentioned last night?” I asked in a mocking tone.
“He said he’d meet us on the train. We need to go further north. Then we can finally get on our way to destroy the Lord of the Dead.” He spat.
I felt Zen stir in my shoulder bag. Somehow Lucifer had smuggled him in my white bag. Can’t imagine that would have looked normal. I would have loved to have seen him. Bet he collared some funny looks off passersby.
“You seem to have a real hate for this guy.” Said Leon in a hushed tone. There were no patient or medical staff near, but better to be safe than sorry.
“Yeah, well, I don’t like to talk about it to people like you.” Kane replied looking towards the floor as he picked the ends of his leather wristbands that stretched from his wrists, halfway to his elbows.
Leon stepped forward to shoot another insult but I put my hand on his broad chest to stop him. I could tell Kane didn’t want to go near that subject. I turned my back on Kane and whispered in Leon’s ear, “Look, I don’t exactly like Kane either, but we have things we want to keep private too don’t we? So shouldn’t we respect that? Anyway, who is that’s showing us the way and going to help us fight you know who.”
“Yeah,” replied Leon “I guess you’re right. And stop it,” he continued with a grin “You’re starting to sound like Harry Potter with all ‘you know who’ business. And you’ve got your own scar.” Although we’d been training and learning with Lucifer, Lucifer still liked us to read popular novels. Including J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings series. When we started to move a lot he usually picked them up from one charity shop and then dropped them off in another. Or simply leave them somewhere.
“Ha, ha, ha, oh be still my aching sides.” I said turning back to face the health posters on the walls while trying sound as sarcastic as I could.
“I’m being serious!” Leon said trying to stop himself laughing. That failed. He was soon giggling unaccountably to himself. I just chuckled at him.
“Right,” Called Lucifer clapping his hands together “are we good to go?”
“Sure.” Replied Kane, he actually sounded like he was willing to go.
We walked out of the hospital without so much as a second glance from anybody. There was a black taxi waiting for us outside.
I looked at Lucifer. “You? A cab?” I asked with a frown. “This isn’t like you.”
“What? He’s a friend. And he’s a good driver, keeps his taxi’s clean.” replied Lucifer.
Kane stood there chuckling to himself.
I glared back at him, “What’s so funny?” I demanded.
“You,” replied Kane, crossing him arms, “its funny watching you pout.”
“Whatever.” I grumbled as I climbed into the car after Leon and banging my head on the way in. “Ouch.” I muttered under my breath and patted the sore spot on my skull.
“Mind your head,” said Kane as he clambered in behind me is grin widened “princess.” He collapsed into the seat across from me.
Lucifer was last to enter the car, just as I was about to lunge at Kane, Lucifer held me in my place. “I’m not a princess” I mumbled
Kane sat in his seat looking very pleased with himself. The engine roared into life and we took off down the long, winding road.
“So what’s your friend’s name?” Leon asked Kane awkwardly, trying to ease the tension as I sat in-between Leon and Lucifer grinding my teeth.
“Kyle. And he’s not my friend.” Replied Kane with a smirk.
“How come? I thought colleagues were friends.” Asked Leon, eyebrows raised.
“They may be, not us though. We have a, you could say, a love hate relationship. Or even, I scratch my back you scratch mine.” Replied Kane. His expression stayed the same.
“So, were meeting him because…” I asked.
“Were meeting him ‘cause,” replied Kane, mimicking my voice, “he knows better than anyone how to get rid of the Lord of the Dead if we don’t get there in time, where he’s most likely to be resurrected and how to stop him before he is resurrected if we do get there in time. Like I explained this all in the text. Remember?”
“I thought you’d be the one who knew about all this stuff!” said Leon raising his voice. It was then that I remembered where we were. I looked across at Lucifer.
I muttered in a hushed voice and leaned over “You’re sure were alright to talk about this in here?” I asked nodding towards the driver.
Lucifer grinned, “Sure he’s cool with all with stuff, aren’t you Steve?”
“Yeah,” Steve grunted in reply, “those ba- I mean those… things killed my little sister, ‘bout a year ago now.” Steve corrected himself after earning a stern look of Lucifer. He didn’t, as he said, ‘appreciate unnecessary use of inappropriate language’. Well he said that but that didn’t seem to stop him when he stubbed his toe on the corner of a hard object. In that case I just repeat what he’d taught me and Leon, in which case we get an evil glance as he clutches his sore foot.
Steve receded back into silence after that and went back to the road.
I felt Zen scrabbling from the inside of bag. I unzipped the top and he stuck his head out. He then started intently licking my hand and nipped me gently. I glanced up at Leon, “Has he eaten?” I asked scratching behind Zen’s left ear.
“One of his biscuits.” Replied Leon looking at the floor.
“And that was?”
“Last night-” replied Leon as he flinched away from me. I flicked him on his ear. “Ow, that hurt.” He cried rubbing his ear.
“Baby, it was supposed to. I’m sure Zen’s stomach feels the same.” I replied frowning at him as he gave me a dirty look.
“What? He feels like you flicked his stomach?”
I ignored him as I reached into my pocket. I’d stashed some roast beef in there from last night’s meal at the hospital, it wasn’t the best but it would do for now. I picked the fluff of it and handed it down to him. He pulled it out of my fingers with his teeth and paws. Then sat tearing it apart with his needle like teeth.
I muttered under my breath “No wonder you’re hungry-” we all jerked forward as the car came to a sudden stop.
“Steve, what’s up?” asked Lucifer. We were driving down a quite country road, so there shouldn’t have been any obstacles. But when we looked out through the window, the front of the car had been crushed. Steve was leaning forward, being held where he sat by his seat belt. The airbag lying limp against the steering wheel.