We were outside the church that was not a church doors. This time Vincent didn’t have a problem walking on to sacred ground. I looked at him and he blushed. “Demonic churches don’t count?” I asked.
Vincent laughed. “It’s not a church just looks like one. It’s a Venatori school and not on sacred ground.”
I nodded. “What if I told you it was on sacred ground. That Venatori have it blessed by our religion?”
“I’d say you were lying.” Vincent said.
“I’m not. All Venatori are ceremonially blessed with the blood of a Venatori leader. I don’t think Mark Green has allowed any new facilities built because he doesn’t want to bleed for the cause. I don’t expect it takes more than a sprinkling of blood mixed with whatever concoction they believe is mystical.”
Ant nodded. “The Dragons do a similar thing with their lairs. It’s marking their territory. Venatori know when they are on Venatori lands. Other supernatural creatures do too. Which is why you are on it. It’s supposed to be a sanctuary, but now most avoid it.”
I smiled. “I bet the Venatori are thankful for that.”
I pulled the double doors of the fake church open and inside looked nothing like a church. It was a lobby much like you would get at the Infirmary at home. A strange looking man looked up at me. He wore spectacles on the tip of his nose and had tufts of white hair sticking out around his ears. He wasn’t very old, but his appearance made him look so. “I’m Nox Sétanta and Ms Eloise Dean has requested an audience.” I grinned at my overly eloquent words and really hoped it pissed people off.
The man in front of us looked at my companions and I felt all sorts of power flair around me when his eyes landed on each on. Even Ryan puffed out his chest and made a display. I couldn’t help the small chuckled that left my throat at the act everyone was following because of what I had said. The strange little man’s eyes went wide and he scurried away in a rat like manner into the bellows of the faux church. We couldn’t move past the entry way. There was magic keeping supernatural and human out alike . I could destroy it if I wanted to. It was easy enough to do. A little fire, a little water and let the magical elements do their thing and burn out the magic barrier. I walked up to in and ran my fingers over the patterns in front of me.
Ryan asked, “What are you doing?”
“Checking out their barrier. We have a similar one but it’s not the same. This one was made by four Magnus’ I don’t think they have had a Cesari here in centuries. I could build this wall with ease and I can tear it down just as easy.”
A woman with red hair walked out from the direction that the squirrelly man had gone. “If you do that Master Nox, I’m afraid much more will fail.”
“Your defenses are failing?” I asked.
“Not failing but weakening. They will be depleted if any of the rumblings in the city come our way. You are correct we’ve not seen a Cesari in centuries.”
“I can strengthen it if you like.”
“What will it cost the Venatori to hire your services?” The woman asked.
“This is a school for Venatori children?”
“It is. We educate the children of Europe until they are required to go to the Academy of New York for their final training.”
“So it’s all little kids, like from 3 to 12?” I asked.
She nodded. “Yes, and we have a small library connected to the Archives where hunters sometimes come to access information. The headquarters here is not as high tech as they’d like after having been in New York for their training.”
“Then the only thing I ask is for the safe houses that I requested. You are Ms. Dean are you not?”
She smiled. “I am. I’m not exactly sure I can grant you that. But I will relay the offer to the council here. We don’t usually hire Exuli for anything, but then there has never been a Cesari Exuli before either.”
I sighed as I closed my eyes and touched the shield in front of me. I sent my power through it. I felt it grow and encompass the school and go several levels down to protected each level of the school up and down. I was almost positive I could feel the presence of the children here.
When I was done I opened my eyes to find Eloise Dean standing in front of me slack jawed and wide eyed. There were several children behind her peaking around corners. I gave them a little wave – more a wiggle of my fingers and the kids all giggled then rushed away from their hiding spots to go back to what they were doing.
The red head in front of me pressed her hand to the shield and it opened. “I have never seen anything quite like that before.”
Ant laughed. “He’s such a sap for kids.” I let everyone go through the entry way before I followed. The shield fell behind me.
“It’s not usual for vampires and therians to work together, but a wicca too?”
I smiled. “I’m talented. What did you need for me?”
“Follow me.” Eloise said. And we really didn’t have much of a choice anyway. We were inside the shields and unless I broke them we weren’t getting out unless she opened it.” I could open it, but it would be like picking a lock, I could do it, but it was illegal. I think I’d prefer not to have an entire race of supernatural beings gunning for me. Because that is what would happen if I ever stood on the other side of them. I was dangerous. I was the strongest living Cesari and I was no longer aligned with the Venatori. So saying I was dangerous was an understatement.