Maefyl crashed into the wall of the apartment; breaking through the shelves of a bookcase and sending clutter to the floor around him. He protected Sanguine from the falling shelves and books as Gabriel rushed to his side.
“You okay, Sany?” Maefyl opened his hands and she climbed up his fingers.
“What a mess.” Sanguine nodded. “I’m fine, but whatever crawled up Lucifer’s ass must be about as friendly as a harpy in heat.”
“Should I have stayed?” Gabriel pulled Maefyl to his feet and set things back in order with a quick wave of his hand.
“It wouldn’t have helped.” Maefyl picked up Sanguine’s computer and tossed it onto the couch. “He has decided to disown Shiroi and ordered Kage to kill Nexus. I have no chance of talking any sense into him before it is too late for Kage. This is going to crush Kaneko. It will drive Kage and Eidolon apart again.”
“You can’t be sure of any of that.” Gabriel wanted to believe that, but it was nearly inevitable. Nexus may never have been well liked, but the few that loved her were pillars of a fragile structure and while her death may only dampen a few faces, the tears that would follow might drown them all.
“What I am sure of is your fight with Lucy is going to be a problem for more than just us.” Maefyl rubbed Gabriel’s back a moment before he headed past him. “I am not about to ask you to forgive his bullshit, but if you plan on being stubborn about this things are just going to get worse for all of us. You should have heard him, Gabriel.”
“Let someone else deal with it.” Gabriel sat on the floor and tucked his violin under his chin as he called it into his hand. He pulled the bow across the strings and made it clear he had nothing else to offer on the subject. He continued to play as Maefyl answered the door to greet Asura and the Circle of Golod.
“Are you in trouble with Uncle Lucifer again?” Asura had insisted on the unannounced visit after the abrupt end to the meeting. It had strangely been one of the less hostile discussions for the Council. Decisions were made quickly with little debate and there had been little of the bickering and name calling that usually took place, but the tension in the air was almost crippling and the final moments that ended the meeting left Asura worried for Maefyl.
“Hello, sweetheart.” Maefyl messed up her hair and invited the others inside. “No. I’m not in trouble.”
“Lord Lucifer was scary today.” Bezer flopped on the couch. “What happened?”
“I doubt it concerns us, my pet.” Nikolai sighed. “If it did, he would not hesitate to let us know. I would prefer to stay out of Lucifer’s affairs.”
“A wise decision.” Gabriel offered his opinion quietly as he played. “Just focus on the work that needs to be done.”
“I need a work out.” Asura grabbed Maefyl by his hands. “You feel like fighting a bit?”
“We’ll be in the hall.” Maefyl spun her into his arms and took her to the Circle building. “I could use a stretch myself.”
“Good.” Asura laughed as he kissed her cheek and waved to Dove. Asura smiled up to the balcony where Dove sat on the railing poking at the screen of her tablet. “Hi Dove, is it going to bother you if we play down here?”
“Not in the least.” Dove smiled and stood on the railing. She walked along it and slid down it as it followed the stairs to the floor. “It will be a welcome distraction and I have finished for the day.”
“Eidolon tells me you have been learning new tricks.” Maefyl drew his blades as he walked a few paces away. “Let’s see what you’ve got.”
“You asked for it.” Asura giggled as she pulled chaos into her hands and clutched her daggers confidently. She grinned as she raised one in front of her and decided to show off a few of her growing talents and continued to pull on the chaos. “You don’t mind if we amp this up a bit do you?”
“This is new.” Dove smiled as she watched the priceless expression on Maefyl’s face. An odd smile that conveyed a fatherly pride slightly twisted as his skin went pale from the shock of what he was seeing.
“Not bad.” Maefyl smirked as he looked at Asura. She was radiant with confidence and pride as she manipulated chaos in a way that should be entirely impossible for her. Gathered around her wrist and ankles, thin ribbons twisted and spun around her limbs in brilliant greens licked with deep orange flames. Her skill with magic was growing rapidly and her control over it was astounding, but as proud as Maefyl was of his daughter he knew this power was a gift from Lucifer and it made him wonder why she was being so favored. Lucifer did not give gifts without reason, and this was not a small gift. “At least it’s pretty.”
“Pretty impressive.” Asura laughed as she lunged forward and slashed at him with her daggers, as he deflected them with his blades she twisted the ribbons around them and attacked again.
“Very nice.” Maefyl laughed as long cords of his own restrained her and she pouted. “Don’t assume an advantage. You aren’t the only one with new tricks.”
“In battle if you are going to bind someone so close, you should attempt to disarm them first.” Dove suggested. “You left him his hands. Even without the aid of magic he could have abandoned the blades and pulled another.”
“Or this.” Maefyl reclaimed his swords and lifted her with soft cords of magic and tickled her sides as she laughed and struggled. As Dove shook her head and laughed Maefyl hugged Asura and reclaimed his magic. “You’re doing great with all of this. I’m proud of you.”
“Really?” Asura hugged him tight and smiled until her face started to ache. “I’ve been trying really hard, but I’ve been busy with other work and Uncle Eidolon has been so busy, too.”
“You are super awesome!” Sanguine pulled on her hair.
“You did start out learning with me and your Dad.” Maefyl kissed her head. “You could just call one of us when Eidolon is busy. What else have you been getting up to?”
“All kinds of stuff.” Asura hugged him. “I still suck at most of it though and I want to show you and Dad together. So I’ll keep practicing.”
“That’s enough mushy stuff! And no more magic you cheaters!” Sanguine insisted. “Round two! Fight!”