“I always keep an eye on what Xantaria is doing,” Darlyryan said. “Because she’s a danger to everyone and regardless of what people will tell you, I do care about that.” He cocked his head and gave a sad smile. “Well, I care when I’m not in descent and that’s only happened a handful of times.”
“If you always keep an eye on her, do you know what she’s up to with Mitakrian?” Sonia asked.
“No. I know they are up to something together and have been for a long time now â€“ possibly for longer than he’s been a dragon. I’ve always suspected he broke his bounds deliberately. But I’ve never been sure what. He wants to merge Earth and its shadow for the void knows what reason. She wants to come back to Ear– Oh.” He hit his forehead with the heel of his hand. “Oh dear, of course. Talonyka is hospitable to Kithreia.” He scowled at the ceiling, eyes alight with speculation. “That’s really stupid and incredibly dangerous but it might just work, though it could be just as likely to have the opposite effect. You’d need an enormous amount of energy to do it as well and I doubt the result would be recognisable as either world.”
“Huh, we were thinking she wanted to pull Earth into a bubble,” Sonia said.
“That’s what I thought as well,” he said. “But Xantaria’s tricky. I wouldn’t put it past her to be working multiple ideas â€“ and I still don’t see what this has to do with Caredale.”
“There’s something very odd about that town,” Claire said. “And I don’t think it’s just those creatures. All the time I was there it scratched at my skin. Something that wanted us to leave. And it’s very odd – no deaths, no flare-ups…” She narrowed her eyes. “Sal, have we ever found a Wild around there?”
Sarah frowned then shook her head. “No, I didn’t even know that town existed until tonight.”
“I nearly missed the news about it as well, even though I was searching for aberrations like that.” She shook her head. “Someone really doesn’t want us to notice Caredale.” She turned to Darlyryan. “And I don’t think it’s you.”
“Assuredly not,” he said. “Nor Alsia. And there are certainly Wilds in Caredale. Quite a few actually.”
â€œSo it must be Xantaria?â€ Sarah said.
â€œPossibly,â€ he said. â€œBut I have no idea what. You want me to carry on with my story?â€
â€œIf you don’t mi-â€ Matthias began but broke off as Lucas burst into the room. â€œLucas, what’s wrong?â€
â€œWe have a major problem!â€ he said.
â€œWith Kay?â€ Adrian asked before anyone else could.
â€œYes, no one’s messed with her mind without her permission.â€
Adrian stared at him. â€œWithout? Meaning something was done, but with her permission?â€
â€œYes, exactly. She’s got a box in her head where she’s been keeping her real personality when she’s with you or most of your family.â€ He shook his head. â€œOnly right now her real personality is out and she’s gone somewhere. We need to find her; I did not like the vibes she was giving off.â€