After asking directions three times they had descended over three hundred stairs. Passing the dungeon where the potion lab was ignoring the bright blue smoke that roiled and billowed out beneath the door, they finally reached the library. Gabriel paused inside the huge double doors that led into the library and looked up. A curved stone ceiling soared above him, the rock was almost black. Dark wood book shelves stretched over twenty feet above him making the room seem like a strange maze. Gabriel could almost see the library in Paradise in this room.
“Alright?” Dawn asked touching his friends shoulder after realizing that the vampyre hadn’t moved for a few minutes. Then Dawn jumped as Gabriel sneezed violently, four times in quick succession
“Fine” Gabriel said wiping his watering eyes. “There’s magick down here.”
“Magick?” Dawn asked not feeling any more than a low vibration and only if he concentrated.
“Old magick.” Gabriel’s voice was vague as he moved to one of the bookshelves running a careful claw first down the spine of one book then over the wood of the shelf. “its in the books, like in Paradise.” Dawn reached out to grip the vacant vampyres hand.
“Gentlemen.” A clipped voice said quietly, Gabriel flinched and spun to face the woman. Then he froze as he saw familiar robes and a leather tool belt at the woman’s waist. Five shining copper rings hung from her right ear.
“Hi” Dawn smiled.
“Something wrong?” the woman frowned as she noticed Gabriel staring.
“You have the same marking system as Paradise.” the vampyre unconsciously touched the silver rings in his own ear, his claws not feeling the metal.
“We did utilize the idea after the previous Queen visited Paradise.” the woman almost smiled “you have more than me, where did you work? The magick quarters perhaps?”
“Not quite.” Gabriel said feeling very awkward.
“This is Gabriel Black-Lightning.” Dawn said “he was a general in the army.”
“The Prince?” The woman whispered her eyes widening. “I am sorry, I didn’t realize.”
“It’s fine.” Gabriel glared at Dawn “I’m no Prince now.”
“Can I help with anything?” the woman stuttered her composure just coming back.
“Maps.” Gabriel said
“Of?” the woman smiled.
“Paradise, Barain all the lands surrounding the main cities.”
“Yes, Sire.” she said, not noticing as Gabriel flinched at the title she pulled a small stack of folded papers from her tool belt. Unfolding one she tucked the others away and handed Gabriel a small map of the library. He held it out and she pointed to the furthest side.
“Here are maps and charts, beside elemental magick.” she looked up at him “there is a young man over there who is the spitting image of you.”
“Sylver?” Dawn asked.
“Yes, he’s in the elementals restricted section, I believe.”
“Why is elemental magick restricted?” Dawn frowned.
“It’s not,” the woman smiled “but binding of said magick most certainly is. There are a few junior librarians around if you need help.”
Lou felt Dorian’s thumbs dig into the knotted muscles of his shoulders.
“You must take better care of yourself.” the witch said quietly feeling tension knots dotted across the daemons back and shoulders.
“My son needed me.” Lou growled defensively, despite knowing that he witch was right.
“He needs you alive and well not exhausted and ill.” Dorian slid one hand over Lou’s shoulder as the daemon sighed and hung his head.
“I know.” Lou said.
“Then as King, I am ordering you to take it easy, go into town get a proper massage, have a drink, a dance whatever. Just relax.”
“I’ll try.” Lou said laying his hand over Dorian’s.
“And take that ridiculous thing off of Raph.” Dorian moved from the bed to stand beside Lou. “It’s just draining magic you don’t have.”
“I can find something suitable for him.” the witch said firmly.