dark faerie 04.5 - without armor

BOOK: dark faerie 04.5 - without armor
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Table of Contents

 

By

 

Alexia Purdy

 

 

Without Armor

 

The Unseelie are up to no good…

My name is Benton, and I hunt the darkest of creatures in existence.

Especially when they get unruly and try to invade my home, the human realm.

Betrayal, broken hearts and uncharted magic…I never saw it coming.

 

 

Without Armor

Elemental Fire ~ A Dark Faerie Tale Series

Copyright © May & July 2015 Alexia Purdy

All rights reserved

www.alexiapurdybooks.com

 

 

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Table of Contents

 

Chapter One

Chapter Two

Chapter Three

Chapter Four

Chapter Five

Chapter Six

Chapter Seven

Chapter Eight

Chapter Nine

Chapter Ten

Chapter Eleven

About the Author

 

 

Chapter One

 

 

 

 

No one ever stands in a cemetery at midnight, puffing out a breath in mid-winter while the snowflakes gathered at the tips of their eyelashes. I could feel the cold, like a dusting of frost on my nose and breathe, but it didn’t truly bother me unless I let it. The fire within kept the chill at bay, melting the crystallizing coat of ice off my skin within milliseconds. It clung to my coat, where my heat did not reach and sorely attempted to gather enough to bury me in its frozen embrace. Yet, here I was…standing in the middle of Yeat’s Cemetery, hoping to find what I was looking for.

If I knew what exactly I was looking for, that is.

You see, somehow I got wind of a small gathering of Unseelie Faeries here, at the edge of the city of Newark where the houses were sparse and the slums grew as the months rolled by. Near a failed school project, houses stood empty; boarded up and overgrown in their left to the wild yards along with the spray of graffiti decorating their ragged edges. I could hear the echoes of the past inhabitants roaming the now empty halls of this graveyard of homes. Each one glared down at me through the darkened windows like I was intruding,  like holes into the building's consciousness. Stepping on hallowed ground where only the ghosts of the past could wander.

I was not welcomed, that I could tell right away. But it wasn’t the empty souls of houses and ghosts of the pasts filled with families, joys, celebrations and laughter that had my senses perked to the extreme alertness. No…it was the other creatures who roamed this empty scar of a town and who were far from being human.

The banished Unseelie were everywhere. I’d already spent months tracking thousands of them down, one by one returning them to the boundaries of the Land of Faerie for judgment by the land itself, entrapping them within its reach, never to step foot into the human world again.

Or…I would cut them down where they stood if they dared try to resist. Nothing lost actually. If they had the unfortunate luck to cross my path, most didn’t survive the trip back to Faerie anyway.

I wasn’t a faery, but I wasn’t just a human either. I was trapped between both worlds; the mundane, or what humans thought of as normal, and the fantastical, magic filled one. I wasn’t truly part of either. My human heritage marked me as such, but my magic was elemental: not faery, not normal. Of earth, yes, but not so ordinary. You see, I could wield my element with enhanced strength, speed and agility. More so than any human could ever hope to achieve. It was what made me more than just one kind of being.

What connected me to the Land of Faerie was having the Queen of the Seelie Court as my sister. That opened up a whole other bag of trouble for me and it was never going to end. The tie bound us forever. It was in the blood.

Every family had its issues…right?

 

 

 

Chapter Two

 

 

 

 

“Did you get the kid?”

“Yeah, the scrawny one with the wet nose.”

“You forgot to put on those jackets they use.”

“Is that why she’s shaking?”

“Moron, she’ll die before we get him to the village and put ‘er to work!”

“How am I supposed to know that? She’s faery right? Can’t she warm herself up with some sort of trick?”

“No, idiot. That’s why they want ‘em. They’re weak. Pathetic really. As much magic as me little toe, she’s got, right yah. They want ‘em inferior.”

The echoes of voices shook me from my thoughts, and I craned my neck to listen. There was something odd about them like they were muffled, shielded. The ability to wield magic also gave me the necessary senses to hear and see all things related to magic. Even through faery glamour.

“Well don’t just stand ‘ere, give her yer jacket! She’ll rightfully freeze and won’t be any good to sell in da village. Move on!”

The other grumbled their protests but complied. Nothing like a snotty little child brat to keep warm when the cold weather didn’t really bother the Unseelie captors. It made them aware of how little they knew about humans. Still, I could see he was mad to have to help a kid in the below freezing temperatures.

I wanted to crack my knuckles, grab a hold of that scum’s neck and crack it like a walnut shell. Wouldn’t that get the night all nice and exciting for me?

These creatures made me violent, even though I thrived and lived for a fight. Maybe it was their inherent cruel nature and disregard for human life that left me wondering how they could affect me so much, even after all this time out here, alone, fighting, killing…I lived to take them down, one by one, incarnation by incineration.

I closed my eyes, pressing my thumbs into my eye sockets. I’d been up for days and there was no rest in sight. Not when tracking a nice group of banished.

I sighed, inhaling sharply as I stretched the vertebrae of my back, enjoying each solitary pop of bone shifting into place. At least I knew where they were going. I’d stalked them long enough to know everything about their operation now. It took meticulous planning to take down a group of Unseelie, especially when some of them were Sluagh fey—the most dangerous of the dark creatures of Faerie.

This part about stealing kids? Well…that was a new thing. It had spiked my curiosity and I kept several feet behind this illicit group I happened to discover by the cover of night during a hunt. There was no one who could rival my silent prowl. I was a hunter by now, focused on my prey and unfathomable. Even the magical ones, the faeries from the Land of Faerie, could not detect me. I was human, but my elemental powers cloaked me as effectively as one of them. Once, I even snuck into the Unseelie palace to save my sister, Shade.

This was a cakewalk now.

I froze in my steps as they paused to enter an abandoned church. It appeared to have seen much better days decades ago. The steeple was barely being held up by its supports, the bell long gone. Sideboards were missing and the foundation had cracks the size of Jupiter in them, running all through it like a mass of veins. Stained glass windows were all ruined, shattered by rocks and left in desolation. Even the front door, a once rich mahogany was now stripped, weathered and cracking from lack of attention.

It was a forgotten place, and the faeries were making their way in like they owned the damn city.

Once, not too long ago, I would run at them and holler into the night to grab their attention. I’d pull them out of their positions and lure then into the streets to off them one by one. I’d once been careless enough to engage in such tactics, but the scars crisscrossing my body were a constant reminder of lessons learned. Each one, a bitter memory.

The faeries were all inside the church and rustling about, not caring how loud or rambunctious they sounded. Perhaps it was the empty streets that gave them confidence to be obnoxious. There was no one left to hear the ruckus.

I made my way to the side of the church, keeping to shadows and cover of darkness. Reaching the first window, I carefully peeked inside, hoping I would see something of use. The faeries were not those of light. Their affinity to darkness made it impossible for me to hope they would light up the space around them and allow me to see the interior of the church. Not finding anything, I scanned my brain for something in my armory of spells which could help me see past the curtains of darkness prohibiting a clear view. If I couldn’t see what they were doing, it’d be like walking into a deathtrap once I set foot inside.

One spell tickled against the fibers of my memory, and I stepped away from the window sill to dig through my pack. It was a small sack tied to my waist, much like a fanny pack, but less uncool. I was all about the cool factor so I wouldn’t be caught dead wearing such a relic.

Cursing under my breath as I sifted through ingredients, I finally found what I was looking for, yanking out a knot of bilberry. It was a common root for enhancing vision for regular folks. If mixed with a faery root called evesgullen and mixed with emulsion made of a variety of natural oils, the mash would allow my retinas to reflect light even more, much like a cat’s eyes. It tasted horrid but once ingested, it worked almost immediately.

Mixing the herbs together, it was a messy concoction. Bits of it stuck to everything. Stuffing the finished mixture into my mouth, I chewed on the mash, grimacing at the rancid taste. After letting the ball of herbs slide down my throat, all I had to do was wait for it to work. Wiping my hands on a small hand towel, I hoped the oily mixture wouldn’t stick too much to my skin. I already smelled like a dentist office. Satisfied they were wiped clean, I stuffed the towel away and peered up into the street.

A ripple in the atmosphere appeared, morphing the world into clean cut lines which increased in brightness the longer I stared. It made me repeatedly blink, feeling my eyes tingle as I adapted to the new vision. Not a moment too soon, the annoying tingle stopped while I crouched by the window once more, ready to test out my new super vision. 

Movement inside confirmed that the faeries were still there. The kid was whimpering softly in a corner, hiding their face. I couldn’t tell how old they were. The light wasn’t strong enough for me to tell. Even straining my eyes as I squinted to get a better look at the perpetrators inside, the kid is the only one out of my line of vision.

“When he’d say he was coming, Spiff?” one of the Unseelie asked.

“Past midnight, when the moon is highest in the sky. Don’t you listen?” the other Unseelie muttered, his mood far from joyous. “Argh! Make it shut up! Its constant whining is giving me here an ache in the skull the size of behemoths!”

“Shh!” His partner shushed the kid. It quieted down momentarily but resumed their constant, whimper-cries moments later.

I shook my head. Unseelie like this had no patience and would probably start whipping the kid soon enough. The thought made my blood boil. No one deserved to be tortured, let alone kidnapped from their bed in the middle of the night. I wanted to run on in there and sever the faerys’ heads with one fell swoop of my Empyrean blade.

BOOK: dark faerie 04.5 - without armor
12.35Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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