Side Story 2
For all his brave words to Sonia, this was not going to be easy. Matthias could ward Sonia and the kids from anyone scrying for them and he already had a second identity he’d been buildingÂ which he could easily slide them into. But the Lavernes had more precogs than any other family. Warding wouldn’t block them and if one of them somehow caught a whiff of Sonia being alive, they’d know to look at him to find her. He could block them as well, but that would be far more likely to be noticed than a ward and interfering with another family’s clairvoyants was dangerous. He wasn’t ready for an all out war with the Lavernes yet.
He mulled over the problem as he sipped his whisky, but no immediate answer was forthcoming. He was still worrying at the problem when an alarm ping in the wards informed him that someone outside of his family had torn through the anti-teleport wards andÂ jumped into the attic.Â He didn’t recognise the signature, so it wasn’t one of Sonia’s family either. He knew all of them.
His heart lurched and his mouth went dry as he leapt up to the attic. He snarled in anger as he saw Marian Laverne’s sister, Tara kneeling by his wife. He flung a bolt of darkness at her as she turned towards him wide-eyed.
“Don’t! Matthias, please!” Tara Laverne threw up a shield that buckled under the first bolt. She cowered back. Her big, frightened eyes making her look even younger than her twenty years. It was hard to believe she already had a two year old son. “Please, I’m trying to help her. If you want her to live you need my help.”
“What?” He psychokinetically scooped her away from Sonia and the kids, pinning her to the floor. “Your family kills Resonants. Why would you help?” he growled.
“Because we’re wrong,” she whispered. “I’ve seen how wrong we are, but I know Marian won’t listen. I was going to talk to her about what I’d seen, but my precognition also warned me what would happen if I did.” Her mental screens were down completely and he caught sight of the first vision she’d had. It was unpleasant and rather unclear. It took him a moment to realise who the young man dying in it was. “At least he’ll live to be a teen if I don’t tell her. Longer if I can figure out what it means.”
“That was your son?” he said.
“That was Sean, yes.” She nodded. “As he will be as teenager. If Marian finds out she’ll kill both of us, but damn it my son is not evil! Will not be evil! So- so- we must be wrong. We have to stop this, but Marian will kill me if I try to talk some sense in to her.”
Matthias studied Tara thoughtfully. The open mind was an invitation to see she was honest, but she might be relying on him assuming it meant she was and not taking her up on it. It would be a hell of a bluff but he couldn’t risk it. He swept into her mind and poked around gently. It took him only a few moments to realise she was genuine, and-
“You boosted Sonia’s jump?” he said softly. “Thank you.” He released his psychokinetic hold on her and offered her his hand to help her up.
“Yes, and I was trying to fix what I can of that essence burn before you threw me across the room. You should call her sister. She’s in a right mess – I can only do so much.”
“No.” He shook his head. “The more people in a secret the more likely it is to leak.”
“You’re going to need her sister,” Tara repeated. He shook his head again and she sighed. “She won’t get well without major help, Matthias.” She knelt down by Sonia again and this time he could see she was soothing some of the damage away. “I’ll do what I can and I’ll make sure the family don’t catch onto what happened. If you try blocking them they’ll catch on but I can do it without suspicion. I’m in charge of the filters anyway.” She sighed heavily. “It’s not much, but what else can I do to help?”
“It’s a lot, thank you. But you’ll have to excuse me if I don’t tell you where I’m going to hide them.”
“Not a problem. I would have told you not to if you’d tried.” She gave a stressed smile. “I’ll pass you what information I can as well, but do me one favour – when this cold war finally turns hot, could you warn me? I’d like to get my kids out of the way.”
“Of course,” he agreed. “I’d never leave an ally in the lurch. How long until Marian misses you?”
“A couple of hours, maybe. Long enough for me to fix as much of this mess as I’m capable of anyway,” she said as she turned her attention back to Sonia. “You get on with figuring out how to hide her.”