February 28th, 2012 | Published in Haventon Chronicles
Chapter Nine Part Two
“He…” Tanya trailed off.
David looked over at her and saw that her eyes were narrowed.
“Yes, I found that interesting as well,” Meredith said. “I told him it was ridiculous but he was having none of it.”
“Is that even possible?” he asked.
“Well, not unless werewolves have some way to immunise themselves to silver. We all regularly get stabbed with pins to check we’re still human, and there’s never been a single case of anyone dying that I know to and I am pretty well read in the archives.” She gave a wry smile. “But we can’t disregard the possibility. It would rather mess up our entire hunting methodology if they did though. If he had said he had proof that there were werewolves in the vampire and spectral branches I’d have given it more credence. There is no double testing after all for werewolf and vampire hunters – that’s how Ian and Marcus slipped through I guess. And the Spectral branch is totally lackadaisical about security.” She stretched like a cat and looked over at Tanya. “If we tell the Council about this they’ll be turning people into pin cushions, you know. Double testing has never been used because it’s just not practical. And Rhiane will probably crack more than she already is. I think Liam’s right, we do need to start considering our member’s mental health more. We take in traumatised kids, train them to hunt and kill supernatural menaces and then expect them to turn out to be rational and reasonable people.”
“Yeah and I don’t think Liam would tolerate people sticking pins in his ragtag mob of ghost, fairy and demon hunters anyway,” Tanya agreed. “And you’re right about that. I said as much earlier.” She put an arm around David’s shoulder. “Dave here made me realise that the reason most of us never question out calling is that if what we are hunting and killing isn’t evil then what does killing it make us.”
“Gravely misguided,” Meredith said with a totally straight face. “Though I doubt that’s what you mean. It’s fortunate that for the most part what sticks its head above the parapet and gets noticed needs killing. Usually. I sometimes feel like there’s a malevolent intelligence out there that uses us to remove obstacles. I know I sometimes found myself pursuing leads based on nothing but a hunch and when I did I was always right about them being a target – but it was them that got the doubts going in my head. And it was one of them that saved me from the crazed werewolf.” Her eyes narrowed. “And I sometimes think the werewolf came after me because I’d figured out what was going on and thrown up my shields, though that makes no real sense.”
“You’re a psychic?” David asked.
“Hmm.” She nodded. “I am indeed. The best one that the Order has currently. That’s the other reason Tanya invited me around. She wants me to train you.”
“Oh,” David looked down at his hands. “I think that you may be right about this malevolent intelligence by the way. This is going to sound strange but I woke up this morning with a breadcrumb trail in my head leading me to where someone was nudging me towards certain targets. Maybe I should have mentioned it earlier, but with Anna’s problem the last thing we needed was me starting up about someone being in my head.”
“Probably wise, it sounds like Anna’s problem was more pressing,” Tanya said.
“Really? That’s interesting.” Meredith sounded curious. She reached down and put her fingertips on his temples. “Close your eyes, relax and let me in. I want to see.”
“Er…” David said. “I’ll try.” He took a deep breath, closed his eyes and willed his mind to open to her.
“Very good, you’re quick,” she said and he felt a warm presence flow into his head and poke around. You should tell Tanya about the problems you’re having with that target, she said as she withdrew. She might have some insight which will help clear up your confusion and I am sure she won’t yell at you for it. She looked up at Tanya. “He is right, the same person has been in his head as was in mine.” She looked back at David. “I’ll teach you to make a proper mental shield before I leave, at the very least. It’ll not only keep him out of your mind but also stop you picking up so much random noise, which is very important. You’ll crack under the stress of it if I don’t.”
“Thank you,” he said.
“You’re welcome. Now, what about Anna,” she said after a moment. “I quite agree that the others would kill her out of hand if we told them about this, and really it isn’t her fault.”
“Oh, I’ll go one better. The guy she hit by mistake, Dave suggested he was serial killer, but i’ll go one better. I think he is almost certainly a procurer.”
Meredith gave a low whistle. “That makes a crazy kind of sense, Tan. I nearly hit a procurer by mistake once.”
“I’ve nearly done it a couple of times,” Tanya agreed. “It’s something else to consider adding to the training regime.”
“What’s a procurer?” David asked.
“See what I mean? We don’t even tell them about them and then wonder why something like this happens,” Tanya said. “It’s a miracle it hasn’t happened before.” She looked at David. “Some vampires use humans to obtain their prey for them,” Tanya explained. “The poor sods don’t usually have much say in the matter. That’s a procurer.”
“Yes, that would be kind of useful to know. But you think this in this case because?” he asked.
“Well I had a long talk with her this afternoon. Her problems started almost immediately after she attacked that guy, so it’s the most likely place for her to have attracted unwelcome attention. And she says she could feel the vampire was quite pleased that you thought that guy was a serial killer. The guy is certainly human so there’s only one logical explanation, he must be a procurer. It fits the evidence as well.”
“If we can find a way to prove that, it’ll shut up her critics,” Meredith said. “But proving it without having to explain how we know it will be difficult.”
“I know,” Tanya said. “It’s going to be hard.” She looked over at the clock and frowned. “Can you show David how to shield himself now? I’ll see what I can dig up on the guy and we’ll discuss this again in a few days. I have to be somewhere in a couple of hours.”
“Yeah, I know,” Meredith said casually and then cocked her head and gave a warm smile when Tanya looked at her sharply. “Don’t worry about it. And of course I can.” She returned her fingertips to David’s temples. “Let me in again.”
I couldn’t keep you out if I wanted to, could I? he asked as he relaxed again.
Not really, no, she admitted. Not at the moment anyway, but it’s a lot easier if you cooperate – when you’re awake anyway. You’d be amazed what you can do when someone is sleeping. And I can’t force you to learn things if you don’t want to. So I need your help to teach you to shield.
I do want to, he said.
Good, she said, because I wasn’t kidding about how dangerous it would be for you to not learn how to do it. You’re growing more sensitive as your ability emerges and eventually the constant mental noise you’d start picking up would drive you nuts, or to drugs or similar to block it out. Now you the way to build a shield in your mind is…
A/N: Hey Peeps!Â The cover for the book version of theÂ first arc of The Dragon Wars Saga is done. 😀