As I listen to Ash explain his family, the image I’d been building of the Van Helsings shatters. Not of Ash though. It’s his actions that I built the image around. Apparently when I’d been babbling on the Bus about breaking family traditions, I had been so far from the truth, I’m surprised Ash hadn’t laughed. Or perhaps all of this is why he’d said nothing. My own family troubles pale in comparison to his.
Dad stands up, breaking my thoughts. He begins to pace, obviously thinking. “Well we can’t fight here.” He stops and studies all of us.
“Look it’s my fight. I’ll leave and you’ll be fine.”
“No, it’s not your fight anymore. It’s our fight?”
“How is it our fight?”
I cringe, Dad and Ash look like they’re about to spar again.
“Because what happens to you affects Morgan and what affects Morgan affects me,”
“And me!” Gloria inserted herself, gaining quick glares from the two of them.
“Have you not figured out you’re linked yet?” Dad turns to me, not giving Ash a chance to answer. “Morgan, why'd you go onto Devil’s Flat that night?” He’s still tense, but he’s calmed his voice for me.
“Because,” I swallow. “I, I, knew the demon,” everyone is staring at me with wide eyes. I look at the ground, my voice stumbling forward as I try to form the right words. “I, I’d seen it before.” Ash and Dad move back to sit with me. “It, it killed Mom.” I feel them all lay a hand on me; comfort and strength. “I, I made myself, remember that night. I, I had to be sure it was the same demon. And, and I remembered something else. A, a name written in blood. Van Helsing.” I look up at Ash, my eyes watery. “That’s, how I knew Ash was up there, and, and I couldn’t let it kill anyone else.”
“Morgan?” I turn to my Dad. “You had no idea what you were up against.”
“It killed Mom, it killed the woman giving birth and the child like as not too!” I can feel my anger rising. “And then, then I saw what it’d done to Ash.” The emotions of that night flooded me. “It had to burn in hell!” No sooner were the words out of my mouth than sparks jumped form my hands to the grass. We all jump back. Dad puts it out quickly with a word and foot stomp.
“What was that?” He asks me glaring.
“I don’t know,” I’m staring at the spot; my hands drawn into my sleeves. The grass doesn’t seem to have been burnt.
Dad shakes his head. “I think you need to forgo that job Mrs. B insisted on. We need to step up your training.” I don’t have time to ask why before he turns to Ash. “How soon you think before your family come back?”
“They won’t if I leave.” I can’t believe Ash is talking about leaving. I want to tell him, no stay, we’ll all fight together. But I can’t say anything. “Look, as long as I’m here you’re all in danger. They’d think nothing of torturing or killing any of you, just to get me.” While Ash glances at Dad and Gloria, his eyes rest on me. “I have to leave.” He turns and walks away.
I start after him, but Dad restrains me. “You can’t go with him.”
I turn on him. “Why Not?” I demand.
“Morgan,” his voice is firm. “Do you remember what I told you.”
“What? About ditching the job for training?” I just want to go after Ash and he’s getting further and further away.
“No Morgan about the test?”
“What test?” I shake my head in confusion.
”Morgan, you need to finish training so you can take the test that will allow you gain your wings and attain the full potential of your powers.”
“So,” Dad tilts my chin up, forcing me to look into his eyes. “You keep using your power untrained and you could kill yourself or someone else. You’ll be nothing but a liability until you’ve past that test and learned your limits.”
Dad’s right. How many times have I drained myself until I collapse, or start a fire. I sigh in defeat. “So how much more training do I have, and when is this test?”
“A lot, and on your 20th birthday.”
“That’s,” I look up wide eyed. “That’s not far away.”
“Can I, just go talk to him now, please?”
Dad sighs and nods. I hope I can catch up to Ash. “Don’t you dare try sneaking off young lady, or I will hunt you down and bring you back!”
As if. I know when logic must overrule the heart, no matter how painful it is. Still, after I take that test, I’m going to rejoin Ash. If I’m lucky, I can get Dad to help.