We enter the darkened back room and I gasp at the coldness. Grams looks at me smiling "It needs to be cold dear, how do you expect to have clear thoughts in a warm and stuffy room?" I nod solemnly and take a seat around the circular table straightening the royal purple cloth that's covered in silver and black stars and moons.
I've only ever been in this room three times, once when I was little but I barely remember it now, I get flashes of my Grams sat in her high backed chair and another woman holding my hand tightly as I tried to run around. I suppose I hoped it was an old memory of my mother though Grams has always told me that my mother had to leave before I could even walk.
My second time was when I was 10, I was running around with Woodsy when we noticed the door had been left open by a client, now don't get me wrong I'm into the mischief and pranks but this room scared me. Woodsy insisted and said that no matter what her 'super vampire powers' would protect us. With a sigh we stalked forward into the room, I was so scared of the power and immense darkness at that moment that I screamed the house down, Woodsy laughed as she pranced around the room with a skull in one hand and a candle in the other. Morbid much? At this point half the house was surrounding me screaming and Cynthia laughing, Grams came and my did we get punished. Hell yeah.
This is my third time, hopefully my last. Rafe sits to my left and Rao goes to sit in the corner at the back of the darkened room his eyes glowing in the dim candle lit room. Grams plods over to her high backed chair that is now so worn it resembles her weather beaten face and the age is shown with each notch and bump in the wood representing another decade and there has been a lot of them.
Grams otherwise known as the Oracle or just as famously know as Delphine Arcana is known as one of the most powerful seers of all time however many lesser seers in the family have just as much clientele as the next, she has the most. Otherkin races from all over Wintrem and possibly further from the unknown come to her for anything and everything knowledgeable.
She raises her wispy haired head and looked from me to Rafe with those clouded eyes that were very intimidating. "Dahlia, I suppose we better get down to business. What is it you seek answers for?" Even though she looks at me knowingly I cringe slightly away from her strong voice that reverberates around the dark room.
I glance over to Rafe and he smiles a weak smile, looks like he doesn't like this either then. I sigh and force myself to sit up straight and tall. "Great Oracle, I seek knowledge on my parents and what has become of them." I state formally and I see Rafe smirk out of the corner of my eye, attempting to control himself in the seriousness of the situation, I kick him under the table and he jumps, I notice he has to bend down and hold his leg. Serves him right.
Grams shoots a quick glare at Rafe and he tries to compose himself, his golden eyes bowing in respect. She clears her throat and closes her eyes, the room seems to get colder and I shiver as I feel Rafe's hand snake into mine. I'm instantly warmed as we hold hands under the table, electric flying between us.
I hear Rao growl slightly in the corner and I start to feel why, power was building in the room to an immense pressure, it almost felt like something else was in the room. I squeezed Rafe's hand as I noticed the Oracle, she wasn't my Grams anymore, stand up looking younger and more radiant, bags and wrinkles practically washed away her eyes were still closed as the power seemed to be sucked into her as if it was giving her life once more.
Silence filled the room and everything began to settle as the Oracle had changed. She sat back down and opened her eyes, the same startling pale blue that she flashed at Rafe met mine. "Dahlia Pythia Arcana. Daughter of Pythia and descendant of the Oracle. You come seeking questions on your blood? No other daughter of the Oracle questions a father's whereabouts, if it is not needed to be known." I felt like I was being scolded as dual voices emanated from her lips, one a young version of my Grams' the other more powerful and deep, Rafe squeezed my hand and I squeezed back even tighter.
"As you have been told before, you are destined for change and if you deem this as your chosen path, you cannot leave. Not even to help others that you may love." She, it, looks pointedly at Rafe and I blush as the gaze drops to me. I drop Rafe's hand like it was on fire and take a deep shaking breath, he looks at me with a frown on his face and the pressing shadows seem to draw closer than they have been able to all afternoon. "She'll do anything to know about her family, those are who she truly loves." He says quickly and quietly, I look at him shocked but he appears more withdrawn, I turn and look into the eyes of the Oracle nodding my head once before speaking shaky words "I would like to know."
Candles blow out in a big gust of wind and I shrink into my chair, no longer having support from Rafe, his body warmth just a memory of only a couple of minutes before. "It is done." Candles all over the room burst into flame highlighting shadows that are curled in gnarled, twisted shapes.
Raoul growls and snaps at ones that stretch towards him yet they seem to bounce away. Cold shivers run up and down my spine as I look over to Rafe with fear in my eyes, shadows almost consume him and pain strikes across his face, his fists are clenched tightly on each knee, the black tourmaline jutting out.
I want to scream but can't as my eyes travel over to the Oracle, her eyes white now as though she is possessed and words pour from her mouth fast and vicious "RAPHAEL! My dearest I told you, you wouldn't evade me for long!" She laughs a menacing and cold-blooded laugh.
"See you on the other side sweetie!" the voice fades away as do the shadows, Rafe is stark white and I notice blood dripping from the hand holding the tourmaline.
As if it never happened my Grams returns to us, hair ruffled and voice slightly more croaky than before. "It seems as if the Powers are interested in you my dear." She smiles sweetly at me. I look at her incredulous, does she not know what has just happened?
Trying to calm down my deep panicked breathing and looking worriedly at Rafe, it looks as if his colour is slowly returning though the cut on his hand is pooling blood in a small puddle and it looks as if he is holding his breath.
I move my hand slowly towards his not wanting to startle him, resting it on his knee, he looks at me and I gasp. His eyes are a cold and dead gold, no life in them. I hear Rao quickly mutter to me "He won't be respondent for a while." He sounds sad but stays where he is, the reading isn't over yet.
Grams' clouded over eyes look from him to me in great concern and I return to my formal state. "What have they told you?" My voice seems loud in the now deadened room. She sighs and starts to write down on a piece of worn paper before reading it out.
"Dahlia Pythia Arcana. Your search to find out more about your bloodline will lead you to the Great Ice Plains which is where your father was last known to be seen." I lift my head up sharply as she almost spits out the word father.
"In order to find more on your mother," her voice saddens "You will need to visit the Swamp Lands to see the Old Mother Witch. She will lead you from there." She sighs handing over the paper with the details and I can’t help but relaxing slightly. Now is my time. She stands and walks out of the room, Rao looks pointedly at me but follows at her heel. I sit back in the chair, avoiding looking at Rafe from the corner of my eye, scared of that cold, deadened look. I fold up the paper to put in my pocket when I see a note that my Grams never read out.
He will need saving. She is coming.