The Seer Chapter One
I patted her cheek again. No reaction. She didn’t even stir. Looking around to make sure we were hidden in the shadows, I sat down beside the crazy woman with the fantastically bright red hair, trying to figure out what I should do.
This was a complication. I didn’t do complications. In fact, I did everything possible to avoid them. Go out each night, do what was inevitably necessary. Go home. A perfect complication-free routine.
I looked back down at her. I’d seen her around a few times, sure, but that didn’t make us friends. I didn’t even know her name. Then again, I tried not to get close enough to know them. It never ended well. That was one thing I learned many years ago. While friendships and love may relieve the endless loneliness, it wasn’t worth the heartbreak. Watching friends die was something you could never get used to, and they always did.
Do I sit here until she comes to? I didn’t even know why she sat down and then fell over. I reached over to check her pulse, it seemed strong enough, not that I would know, but I did know alive and she was that. Her skin wasn’t clammy in the way the drug users got when they overdosed. So, what was wrong with her? Did I call for help? Then what? Calling for help lead to questions—that I’d most likely prefer not to answer.
Shit. I couldn’t just leave her lying in an alley. There were too many creeps and sickos in the neighborhood to do that. As a woman, I knew what could happen in the wrong places, never mind when unconscious. I looked around, checking we were in the shadows and no one was lurking close by.
She needed to wake up and explain how she knew I was freaked out by the weirdo in the yellow contact lenses. My skin had been crawling when I’d been near him, then she breezes by and grabs me to rush me out of there. Why had she said I was being followed, and we had to hurry? Hurry to where? Followed by whom?
A chirping sound came from her pocket. Reaching in, I pulled out her phone and looked at the screen. It said Raf with a smiley face beside it. Maybe they could help shed some light. I hit the call button.
“Crissy?” A deep male voice asked.
I looked at the woman again. “Is Crissy petite, bright red hair and a little nuts in the head?”
“Who is this?” A woman asked.
“She grabbed me and said we had to hurry, so we rushed out of the club and ran down the alley. Then she just sat down and,” I looked at her again, “I think she passed out.”
“Where are you?” The male demanded.
“In an alley…”
“What alley?” The woman asked.
I looked around for a moment, seeing which dark ally we’d stupidly run into. “The one across from the perv club…”
“I know where that is. Stay with her, I’m on my way.” The woman said and then the line went quiet.
I hung up the phone, looking at it before tucking it back into her pocket. Well, one question answered. Someone was coming to get Crissy. I studied her, she looked like a Crissy.
The sound of boots on the pavement had me backing deeper into the shadows, reaching up under the back of my jacket, I squatted, ready to spring into action if needed.
“Crissy?” Someone whispered.
They must have been around the corner when they called. I stood slowly, silently, then stepped away from her. “She’s here.” I said as I stared down into the darkness.
A woman stepped into view, gave me the once over, then dropped down beside Crissy. “Was she hurt?” She asked, as she checked her.
I shook my head. “Not that I know of. She grabbed me in the club and said we had to hurry, then we ran out the back exit.” Two very large males moved into sight. I wrapped my hand around the dagger strapped to my back.
One dropped down beside Crissy, worry and concern written on his face. He must be the Raf with the smiley face. The other stood stiffly, assessing me with cold, flat eyes. There was something about him that set off alarms inside me. Not entirely bad, but not good either. There was more about these people than the eye could see. I knew better than most could ever imagine. Things were not always as they appeared.
I couldn’t sense their emotions, other than seeing their concern for Crissy. Something was not right. The sooner I got out of here, the better off I’d be.
“I need to get her back to my place.” The woman said.
“I got her.” The man beside her said as he scooped the little redhead up in his arms.
Standing up, the blonde woman looked at me. “Thank you for staying with her.” She glanced at the stiff one standing behind her, then back to me. “What was Crissy trying to get you away from?”
I shook my head. “I don’t know.” I took a step in the direction of the narrow alley between the two buildings. “I hope she’s alright. I’ll get going now.”
“Wait,” She held up her hand. “You should come back to my place until Crissy wakes up so we can find out. You could be in danger.”
Danger wasn’t anything new to me. I looked at the drooping redhead in the big guy’s arms and debated on it for a brief moment. The entire scenario screamed of attachments, and I knew too well how that always ended. Shaking my head, I glanced from her to the one with the strange vibes. “I’m going to pass. I need to be somewhere.” It wasn’t a complete lie, I needed to be anywhere but here.
Not giving them a chance to stall me any longer with chit-chat, I backed up a few more steps and then gave them an abrupt nod. Turning, I hit a full run in a few short seconds and took off away from the dark alley.
Two things registered—well, three did, but the last one didn’t count because it was only my stomach telling me I hadn’t eaten recently. I was laying on a bed, so that confirmed I’d blacked out, and the bed moving meant I wasn’t alone.
“Crissy, open your eyes for me.”
I didn’t open them. I knew if Daxx was talking to me, I was safe. Her watching over me meant I had a few moments to assess the chatter inside my head. So many still, which was not a surprise… none were demanding I needed to really see them, so I didn’t. A sound from beside the bed told me she wasn’t alone… that was the second thing I noticed.
“Crissy, you gave me a heart attack.” Rafael was with her.
Opening my eyes, I looked up at him. He smiled. I liked him, he always smiled at me. Too bad his teeth were normal right now, I liked his fangs better. It was an odd thing, but that confirmed my whole life wasn’t just me losing my mind, seeing stuff in my head, and knowing there were things out there that everyone didn’t know about. I looked around to see where we were, and recognized Daxx’s apartment.
“Next time you text ‘help’, try to give me a hint about what is going on.”
I had sent him a message. I bolted up and looked around. “Where’s Alona?” I crawled off the bed and went out into the other room. She wasn’t here. A large man with red hair was, but no one else. “No, no, no, no.” I spun around and went to the window to see if it was still night time. My blackouts weren’t always short. “We have to go find her.” I went quickly into the kitchen and turned on the tap. Leaning down I took a quick sip, then shut it off and turned, running into Rafael’s chest. He reached out to steady me, so I wouldn’t fall backward. I looked up into his blue eyes. “We have to go get her. They found her.” I ducked around him and went to go get my pack. I’d been staying here for weeks now, but I went nowhere without it. You never knew when you would have to run and hide, or disappear, so keeping what you’d want to take with you was very important.
“Criss.” Daxx stepped in front of me and put her hands on my shoulders. “Slow down. We found you passed out in an alley with some strange woman.”
I nodded. “That’s Alona.” I went to go by her, but she blocked me. She had that look, the ‘we have to talk’ look. I would have to talk before I was going to be able to do anything else.
“We’ll get to Alona in a second. Are you okay?” Her eyes searched my face.
I frowned at the odd question, but the way she stared at me demanded an answer. She was very determined. “Why wouldn’t I be?”
“You were unconscious when we got there.” Rafael said coming to stand beside me.
I shrugged, “I’m fine. I knew it was coming, I tried to hurry…”
“Wait.” Daxx stopped me with the look that said she wasn’t happy.
I loved her, she had so many looks, the fact I recognized them always made me feel like we could have been family in another life.
“You knew you were going to pass out?”
I nodded again, it was too complicated to explain, we didn’t have time for this. “Yes. It happens when there’s too much filling my head at once.” Glancing to the redheaded man standing on the other side of the room, I wondered who he was. He was as big as Raf, but nowhere near as nice. He hadn’t moved or smiled. Waving my hand, I decided I’d figure out who he was later. Snapping my head around, I looked back to Daxx. “We have to go find Alona. They found her and she isn’t safe now.”
“Is she a friend of yours?” Rafael asked.
“No,” I shook my head, “I’ve never met her, but I saw her before and that didn’t make sense, until it did.” Daxx rubbed a hand across her forehead, the way she always did when she listened to me. I know she didn’t understand me most of the time, but she always listens to me, and that was more important than anything. I needed them to help me find Alona. “We have to find her. She doesn’t know, but she just carries on…” I glanced at Raf, he was nodding, but his expression said he had no idea what I was saying either. “if they know her, that’s bad.”
“Okay.” Daxx put her hand on my shoulder so I would look at her. “First, you passing out is a normal thing?”
I could see the worry in her eyes and it upset me to see that. “Yes. It’s like…” I paused and looked at the floor trying to figure out how to explain it, and be clear with all the things in my mind right now, “a system reboot. When I get over-loaded seeing, I just shut down for a few minutes then I’m good to go.” I nodded.
“Does it happen often?” Rafael leaned down and looked at me. He was so sweet and good inside.
“No. Lately though, with so much going on here, it’s been more frequent.” Hundreds of visions a day would be taxing on anyone, if there was another person that went through it. I doubted what I had was common at all.
“You feel okay now though?” Daxx asked with her eyes searching mine again.
“Yes.” I hoped that explanation would clear it up so we could go. “Can we go find her now?”
“I don’t think she wants to be found.” The redhead said.
I rolled my eyes at him, “I know she doesn’t want to be found, but she has to be.” I looked back to Daxx, she would understand. “The man with the yellow eyes found her, so she’s not safe, but doesn’t know she’s not. We have to help her.”
“You had a vision of a man with yellow eyes?” Daxx asked.
“What? No. I saw him at the club talking to Alona.” I sighed, why were they making this so complicated? “Alona doesn’t know. When I saw her, before I actually seen her…” I looked back to the redhead man, “her own eyes were red.” I spun to Rafael, “like yours.”
He frowned, “She’s from my side?” Raf looked at the redheaded man, an odd look on his face.
Now they were getting it. “Yes, but she doesn’t know because she’s never been there.” I frowned, “I don’t think.” I was almost sure, but sometimes I missed things with so much to sort through. I stepped around his large body and went to grab my pack, digging in it for my notebook as I explained. “When I was looking for your lost brother,” I stopped and thought for a second, “no, maybe before that, then I saw her and she’s quite old…” I pulled out the notebook and dropped the bag. “I mean the cars were old when I saw her…” I flipped through the notebook, I know I’d written it down when it happened.
“That woman with you tonight was not old, nor did she have red eyes. I would have sensed it if she were from our side.” The stiff man informed me.
I stopped and examined him. There was something hard about him, not bad, but he was definitely not a soft-hearted person. “Maybe your radar is broken.” I tilted my head and studied him some more, or the space around him, more than his actual body. “And sometimes people are much older than they appear.” As he was.
“Okay.” Daxx came over and lightly grasped my hands before I could open the book again. “Just give me a second.” She looked over to the man. “Victor, is it possible that someone got lost or trapped over here years ago?”
He rubbed the back of his neck and stared at the floor for a moment. “I suppose it could happen.”
“Before cellphones communicating was hard.” Rafael added. “It’s not like we could use landlines or telegraph.”
Victor took a deep breath and then nodded slowly. “I can check the records and see…”
I was happy they were listening and seemed to believe me, a rare thing in my life, but they still weren’t getting it. Did I tell them she’d never been anywhere but here? That she didn’t know she was like them? Or did I let them look for her their way? I hated decisions like this. A rainbow. Why is there a rainbow in my head? It didn’t last, so it couldn’t be important.
“Can you tell us more?” Victor asked me, making me focus on him and not my own thoughts.
I shook my head and then tapped the side of it with my finger. “This doesn’t come with instructions. Its more like movie clips, you know short YouTube videos.” I shrugged, “sometimes they are longer with sound, but that’s rare…” I stopped because his serious, but pretty green eyes locked on me, and made me feel like I’d just said something wrong. I thought back to what I’d just said, there couldn’t be anything wrong with it.
He raised his hand slowly, it was a big hand, as far as hands go. “You actually see inside your head?” He glanced to Raf, then Daxx, “I thought, when we were talking, she was seeing,” he pointed to one of his eyes. Stiffening, he placed his hands on his hips and looked at me again.
I felt like he was examining me under a microscope now. Not a good feeling at all. I’d never seen him, I didn’t like not knowing what was inside a stranger. I shook my head and tried to stay focused on what he was saying.
“When she could see Marcus and his followers I thought that was her seeing, but it’s not, is it?” He snapped his head to look back to Rafael.
“Right.” Raf replied, looking as confused as I felt.
The space around him changed, it was murky, flashing between hot and cold so fast I couldn’t possibly understand what it meant.
“I will search the records.” He strode across the room and out Daxx’s door before any of us could blink.
“That was…” Daxx looked from me to Raf.
He nodded. “Yeah, just a little on the strange side, but Victor can be abrupt like that.” He shrugged and then looked at me.
“I don’t think we’re going to be able to find your Alona tonight, Crissy. She took off running and will be nowhere to be found by now.”
I gnawed on my bottom lip. “You’re probably right, she hides very well.” I sighed, “It took me weeks to find her this time.” I hugged my notebook. “If I see her again, will you help me?”
He nodded. “Yes. If she belongs with us, then we have to find her.”
Belongs with us… Brother. “Oh.” I turned and went into Daxx’s room, dropping down, I pulled my other bag from under her bed. When I looked up, they stood there looking at me. “I am getting closer to finding your brother, Raf, he keeps changing his name…” I tried to remember how many times he had, but couldn’t. “So, I lose him and have to start tracking the new name… after I narrow down which one is his.” I got up and lifted the heavy bag onto the bed and opened it. “It’s not easy. The years he spent in another country… that was tricky to follow.” I pulled out the thick stack of papers and held them to my chest. “But at least I’m in this century now, so if I can just figure out who he was next, I might be closer to who he is now.”
Rafael looked at the papers I was hugging and grinned. “That’s amazing. I don’t know how you do it.”
I shrugged, “I’m used to processing a lot at once…” I nodded and went back into the other room, “I mean, some days I get hundreds of flashes.” I thought about that for a second. I’d tried to count a few times, but kept losing track. Sometimes I wished my brain had a remote that I could just hit pause and take a closer look…
“You get hundreds of visions a day?” He asked, following me out. Huffing out a loud breath, he shook his head. “I can barely handle one or two a week.”
I froze and stared at him. “You see things too?”
With that smile I liked, he nodded. “I started seeing Daxx about five years ago, that’s how I knew she really existed.”
I looked at her, of course she existed. What a strange thing to see. “Are they little clips or long movies? Do yours come with sound? Mine rarely do…”
Rubbing her temples, Daxx walked in carrying my bag, she looked at Rafael. “My king wants me to get back ASAP.”
Raf chuckled, “I’ve been ignoring his requests.”
She gave him a stern look. “I don’t think that’s an option with the mating bond.”
Her King? She had a king. That was a kind of cool.
Daxx stopped and looked at me, her eyes locked with mine and I knew what that meant, she was going to make a request that I stay put or laid low, like she always did.
“I want Crissy to come back with us.” She turned and looked at Raf. “Do you think she’ll need a device? A legal one.”
I frowned and looked from one to the other.
Rafael rubbed his jaw as he thought, “With the way she can see through magic and spells, I don’t think she will, but to be on the safe side, I’ll get Quint to meet us when we land and bring one.” He pulled out his phone and walked over by the window.
Daxx nodded, then turned those blue eyes of hers back to me. I hugged the papers tighter, going to new places never worked out well for me. My mind would explode with the new onslaught of visions popping in.
“Crissy, we’d like you to come home with us for a few days.” She smiled and motioned to the papers I held. “You can work on finding the brother, and not have to worry about being caught, chased or…” she smirked, “everything else.”
I looked at Rafael as he talked quietly into his phone, then back to her. “I don’t know. Its cool that there’s a place from inside my head that really exists, but I don’t know if my head can handle it.” I glanced to the window. Maybe the rainbow means its going to rain. “It’s used to here, sometimes the hundreds can turn into so much more if I go to a new place.” I wouldn’t mind seeing where Quinton and Rafael lived though. I chewed on my bottom lip, trying to decide if I should chance it. “What is this device? Is it like the ones you’re trying to track down here?”
“Sort of, only it would be a legal version of it.” She shrugged, “I don’t need one, and I don’t think you would to stay there, but we’d like to be sure.”
“What happens if I do need one and I don’t have it?” Losing things was something I did a little too well.
Daxx glanced at Raf, then gave her a nervous look. “We don’t want to find out.”
Wide-eyed I looked at her. “If it’s too much for my head to cope with, can I come back?” It would be nice to not have to look over my shoulder for a few days, something I hadn’t had in… well, ever.
“Yes.” She smiled. “Just say the word and one of us will bring you right back here.”
My heart started beating so fast in my chest, I felt like my whole body was pulsing with it. “Okay.” Taking back the bag she held, I stuffed the papers in it and turned to get my other things.