In that moment, everything broke and crystals rained on them, pelting a symphony as the glass shattered on the floor. Arianna had lost control of her emotions, the drive for the unleashing of her inherent, but hidden, powers. Damian reached out for her and pulled her hard against his chest, and as swift as breathing, he carried her away from the disintegrating chandelier.
Damian's acute hearing heard the sudden scraping of chairs and the dashing of feet into the foyer. He knelt on the floor, cradling Arianna’s body in his arms, turning his back to the direction of the deck. He didn’t want James or Isabella to see Arianna in this fragile state.
Arianna was breathing hard and shaking; something strong and uncontrollable was coursing through her veins and it scared her. Her hand was clutching a handful of Damian’s shirt, trying to steadied herself. Her green eyes were gone, replaced by the color of pearl.
“Arianna, I need you to concentrate and relax,” his face was pressed against the side of her head, whispering in a kind and urgent manner.
“What’s happening?” she whispered in a constricted voice. “I can’t, something is inside me…”
“I promise everything will be okay, just concentrate, please.” Damian’s voice was more urgent and pleading. The footsteps were nearing the foyer and the glass in the room still rattled and shook animatedly.
Arianna did as she was told and breathed in and out in a methodical way. Her grip on Damian’s shirt had loosened and the rattling was starting to settle. Her eyes were back to normal, and the usual green were looking up at Damian in fear and bewilderment. Damian only smiled at her, fearing that this, her first contact with magic, would arouse many questions from her, for him; to which many he didn’t have answers.
“Oh my goodness!” Isabella exclaimed in horror when she walked into the foyer with the beautiful and expensive chandelier spread out on the floor, destroyed, with only the silver skeleton as a remnant of its former beauty.
“What happened here?” James’s voice was worried. He took Isabella’s hand and guided her through the glittery mess to where Damian and Arianna were standing.
Damian had just helped the dazed Arianna up, holding her weight against him. “I think a screw from the chandelier went loose. We walked away from the crashing range just in time. She’s just a bit overwhelmed by what just happened.”
“I will call the real estate agent tomorrow,” James declared. “I’m so sorry for what happened; this is no way to introduce you into your new home…” He sounded apologetic.
Damian looked down on Arianna, she looked confused and guilty. “It’s not your fault; it was the damn screw’s.”
“It would feel wrong to let you sleep in that house after what happened with the chandelier,” Isabella insisted, hauling James travel bag into her two-story house with James trailing behind her, opposing the idea. James quickly took the bag from her and obliged to her kindness.
Damian threw his bag over his shoulder and started walking into the house, but he noticed something was missing. He knew immediately what it was: he didn’t feel hatred-filled eyes on his back. He turned and watched Arianna staring blankly at the sky through the window of the van. He sighed and walked back. He startled Arianna by opening the door for her.
“What are you doing, trying to scare the hell out of me after all that I’ve been through today?” She half-shouted.
“It’s called being a gentleman. I thought every girl liked that.” Damian grinned.
Arianna rolled her eyes and pushed past him, storming into the house.
Something told Damian that she didn’t want him here, or in her life. However, the latter couldn’t be prevented, she didn’t belong here, and she was bound to go back to their world with him. It was all a matter of time. Damian strolled inside the house, carefully scanning the area for any of the Seer’s dark servants, or the Seer himself.
“Damian should start school tomorrow, the faster the better for adaptation,” Isabella was saying as Damian stepped into the kitchen. “Oh, Damian, glad you’re here. I hope you like it although it’s nothing compared to what you’re used to.”
Believe, I’m not used to luxuries at all. Damian was tempted to say, but instead said, “It’s fine Mrs. Lee.” As the warrior he was, he had endured severe and ruthless training.
“Good, I will call the principal, a friend of mine and have everything arranged. By the way, your room is in the second floor, the second door to the right.”
“Thank you.” Damian said and pulled his most disarming smile, then climbed the stairs. He found the door easily, there weren’t that many anyway. He glanced at the door just across his own and read ARIANNA on a post-it note. How delightful, I have her just in front of me. I can protect her better that way.
Arianna had talked little over dinner, and after it, she had retired to her room. Damian had done the same, shortly after her. He reached his room and got in, when he was closing the door behind him; he felt a slight shove on the door. Perplexed, he peered around it. “What are you doing here?” He asked, amused.
Arianna was standing on the doorway, trying hard not to glare at him. “I need to talk to you.”
Damian opened the door and spread out his arms. “It was a matter of time, sis, before you to come running to me and confess your secret, forbidden love toward your stepbrother. I don’t blame you, it happens all the time.”
“Oh please, don’t laud yourself” she scoffed, “maybe you can win my mother with that stupid grin you have plastered on your face, but not me.” She walked inside the room and closed the door silently, then turned to him and stared in a solemn way. “I want to talk about today.”
“I promise I won’t tell you whine like a little girl.” Damian winked.
“What happened to me today?”
Damian was caught off-guard with the question, and then shrugged. “How would I know?”
“How did you know what to do with whatever was going on with me?”
He shrugged again. “Basic tranquilizing stuff, I had an anger management session with this fabulous shrink. I recommend her highly.”
“Who are you?” These words were sharper and more dangerous.
“I beg your pardon?” Damian tried to sound jocose. “I am your soon-to-be older stepbrother, so, I would appreciate you keeping your voice cool when you talk to me.”
“No you’re not,” Arianna pressed on. “You are hiding something from us, I can tell. Besides, you called your father by his name. What son does that?”
Damian faltered. Did I really do that? “You’re not the only one with a troublesome burden, sister. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m dead tired and I’m expected to start school tomorrow.” He ushered her outside abruptly, without letting her say any word. “Good night.”
He closed the door and ignored when Arianna started pounding on it. Minutes later, she went to her room and slammed her door shut. Damian sighed; he had to be more careful next time.