The door to the elevator opened and a man with blue eyes and tanned skin looked out pointing a gun. He looked sad and reserved and my heart sank. I reached forward and took the gun from Emilio Vega’s hand. He didn’t resist. “I won’t hurt you.”
He frowned. “They know that.” His body reacted and his hand was on my wrist and he wrestled my arm behind my back at an awkward angle and the pain was there but it was mostly so the others didn’t hurt him because I was incapacitated. “You two stay here.” He said.
“We won’t.” Alex argued. “You know that.”
“Stay here or he’ll die.” Emilio pulled a blade from his sleeve and pressed it to my stomach point pressing into my skin and aimed at my kidney and heart.
“Where are you taking him?” Ant asked through barred teeth.
Emilio sighed, “To the council. I can’t kill him, but they can.”
“Why are you doing this?” Alex plead.
I laughed. “He’s a good little boy – always has been.”
Emilio shook his head, “Your father was once a good little boy too. Until he met you. You destroy everything, Nox. My son, your father, you will destroy the Venatori if you win this.”
“I’m not going to destroy it.” I said.
“Taking the kill orders from the hunt will destroy us.”
“Then maybe you need to be destroyed. Like the Aeternus before you. So stuck in your ways you can’t see there are better ways.” I said. “It’s why they died. It’s why you’ll die. Why don’t you just kill me now? No one will stop you.”
The knife dug in father and Alex frowned, “Don’t.”
He was talking more to me than to Emilio. “I won’t watch you die.”
I smiled. “So turn around Alex.”
His frown grew deep and he turned around. I felt him in my head. You better know what you are doing.
Trust me I thought over and over again inside my head. Ant growled and lunged at us. Emilio pressed the knife up into my body, lancing my kidney and I felt it peirce my heart. There was so much pain, and yet even as I collapsed to the ground, Alex and Ant were pulling me inside the elevator and Alex tossed the evil Venatory violently out the door with his hands.
He looked at the man stumbling backwards. “I didn’t know I could do that.” He said as he pulled the knife from my gut. “You have until we get to the top to heal up.”
I nodded and Alex helped me stand up. “He’s radioing to the top about your death and us two accompanying your body.”
“Good. They won’t expect me alive.”
“Are you okay?”
I lifted my blood soaked t-shirt and showed Alex there was nothing there. “It only hurts a little.”
“I think w are even know.” Alex said. “I’m not sure I’m going to get over seeing you fall like that.”
I was too preoccupied with healing myself that I didn’t notice our upwards movement until just before the doors opened. There were no guns waiting, just a mass of Venatori who thought to subdue a vampire and a telepath with ease. I flung a mass of air in front of me and they all flew backwards. Ant and Alex followed me out of the elevator. I yelled “Mark Green. Leader of the Venatori. The Imperordo. I challenge you.”
I stopped yelling knowing they could all hear me perfectly fine. “You will stop sending assassins after me. You will stop killing the innocent because you feel they are dangerous. Yield now, or die.”
Alex and Ant followed and as we passed everyone else followed. Alex asked, “Why did they stop?”
Ant chuckled to himself, “Such a new born babe at times.”
Alex growled but Ant kept talking, “Once a challenge issued, no one can interfer. That means us or them or anyone else. ”
“So we could all walk away?”
“It doesn’t work like that.” Ant said. “Dishonorable and they’d probably shoot us before we got out of the elevator.”
“But no one can interfer.”
Ant laughed, “It doesn’t work that way. As much as we’d like it to. A fight to the death is the only way this ends.”
Alex growled. I knew he didn’t like that thought. The fact that i was putting myself in danger wilingly. But it was the only way they were going to stop sending assassins after me. I didn’t want my kids to live in fear. I didn’t want to live in fear and I really didn’t want to lose Alex in all of it. He was Chevalier, but even immortal Chevalier can die.
I kept walking down the hall to the Council chamber. I’d never been inside before. The large double doors looked heavy and I pushed them opened. This could go horribly worng or it could go horribly right – either way it was going to happen.