Simply never simple

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"What?" Alice said at almost the exact same time as Lucas. Why was something like that a secret when there were so many familiars dying in every family all the time? Either all the wizards and witches knew about it but didn't care to save their familiars or they didn't know and that's why they accepted that they couldn't save their familiars. But why was something like that a secret? If she knew more about the wizard society then she would probably have dared to ask why no one knew about it, but since she didn't know that much and didn't know if that statement was true she put that question aside.

"How is that possible? I thought the only way for a familiar to stay was for the wizard to not get full control. How come Alecander didn't know about that?" Alice hadn't meant to get Alecander into the conversation, but some part of her brain threw out the question before she could stop it.

Alecander had known those two, why hadn't they told him about that there was a way for him to survive? If he knew, why hadn't he told her? She had been devastated once she found out that her control would kill Alecander and still he hadn't told her. Why hadn't he known?
"Alecander knew about it," Otaria said, frowning a bit before giving a shrug. "He must have thought the cost was too high. The possible cost I suppose. Do you know why the wizards and witches of old wanted to get rid of their familiar?"

"They were tired of being outcasts." Lucas responded instantly.

"Right and wrong," the young woman said as she pulled down the shoulder of her shirt. Underneath lay a glowing tattoo. "It is because they felt the cost of keeping their familiars around were too high. At the age of adulthood a familiar and witch must complete a rite together that could destroy one or both of them, leaving the other mourning them. If they do not, then the bond becomes sprained and witch and familiar are left to the fate that is common today. The rite requires that both to give up a bit of ones self to the other. Take me for example."

The male familiar pulled off his own shirt revealing a matching tattoo that trailed from the top of his pants, over his shoulder and wrapped around. "She gave her back while I gave my loyalty," he finished gently. "The witch must survive the rite that is placed before her or him by the elements or die trying."
Alice felt her knees give in beneath her and she had to lean her back towards the wall to stand up. She could barely hear Otaria's or Lucas words at first. How much did he keep from her? He could have told her the alternatives instead of making her believe that there was no other choice. First he didn't tell her about familiars dying and then he also refused to tell her how she could save him.

Her mind woke up just in time to hear the end of Otaria's explanation. Of course Alecander wouldn't have told her if she could die because of the rite. "That stupid idiot." She mumbled. Couldn't he at least have told her after he had joined the element? He knew about Raziah and Lucas and still he didn't tell. But she couldn't feel angry at him.

She already knew that Lucas would do it, he did anything for Raziah. But would Raziah let him? Would she be ready to risk Lucas life? The thought made Alice's heart skip a beat. He could die if he tried to do it. But Raziah could die if he didn't. And he could hurt himself if he didn't. Alice felt her heart being torn apart as she thought on all the ways she could loose the two of them. But she knew it wasn't up to her.

"What are you going to do?" She asked Lucas, even though she was certain what his answer would be.
Lucas was staring at the passed out Raziah, a hand gripping hers. He bowed his head and pressed his forehead to the knuckles of Raziah's hand to his forehead. "What do I need to do?" he finally said, looking over at Otaria. He knew the risks. He didn't care. He wanted to stop hurting people with his storms but didn't want to lose Raziah either.

Otaria looked at Ryuji who stepped forward. "First you must wait for Raziah to wake up. When she does I will instruct you both as your guide through the process. You will need all your strength to survive Lucas," he said before he turned and shifted there, nuzzling Otaria who hugged his head to her chest and looked over at Lucas. "Only those that love their familiar and are strong can pass the tests I've been told. Contemplate that while you rest this evening.

Off down a hall stood a girl staring at the things happening before her. She hadn't gotten out of the school before the storm had struck, having been working on a movie project of hers in the computer lab with her earphones in.Now she stared as the transfer student changed from a human to a-a creature she couldn't even describe. She wasn't one of the popular girls that Alice might have hung out with when she was dating that jerk jock, but Kaeli had said hi to her a few times--enough to know it was indeed Alice. Perhaps it was some kind of left over video but she remembered Alec simply because she'd had photos of him that suddenly went blank one day while she had been looking through them. Something had always bothered her about it and now she was staring as things changed shape. "Alice?" she breathed, earning the attention of Otaria and Ryuji almost immediately. She took a step back as angry, worried eyes hit her. Before she could move her legs were encased in stone and she was being moved forward without her consent. She let out a squeak and tried to pull her feet away, trying to turn and run from the strangeness. "Let me go! I didn't-Please don't hurt me!"

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It didn't surprise Alice at all that he accepted it, even though he might die. That was what scared Alice the most, he might die. What was she supposed to do if that happened? One part of her hoped that Raziah would get him out of it, but another part didn't want to loose Raziah. And she knew that Lucas wouldn't be able to take it if he lost his familiar and sister. Alecander and Alice had only been together for a few month and they still had a special bond, and she hated it when he had disappeared. Lucas and Raziah had been together their whole life, loosing someone like that must be a hundred times worse than what she had felt for Alecander.

Suddenly she heard a voice behind her, calling her name. It felt familiar but she couldn't put a face to the voice. As she turned around with a shocked expression, since she hadn't thought anyone were still in school, she saw Kaeli. They hadn't really spoken to each other, but said hi to each other now and then when passing each other in the corridor.

"Stop." Alice told Otaria and gave her an angry look. "You're scaring her even more by doing that." For someone that just had gotten into all that paranormal, magic stuff, Alice knew exactly how freaked out Kaeli must be. How much had she seen or heard?
Kaeli was released when she was within six feet of the group. She fell to her knees with a yelp not expecting to be released so suddenly. She looked up at the others and then scrambled back, pulling frantically out her video camera and trained it on them. "D-Do that again and the whole world will know!" she squeaked, hoping to keep the others from trying to get rid of her.

Otaria stepped in front of Ryuji's mythical body, glaring at the video camera though she refrained from using any magic to stop the woman. "Alice, is this a friend of yours?"
When they asked her if the girl was a friend of Alice's she almost felt a bit embarrassed for knowing Kaeli even though they weren't really friends. Mostly because of the way Kaeli acted. "I know her." Alice confirmed, but didn't use the term friend since they weren't.

"Do you really think that it would be hard for them to take your camera away from you and destroy the evidence?" Alice asked as she turned to Kaeli, just to remind her that she would need to get out of there first to get the recording up on the net. "Put that away and calm down. Lets go to a classroom, sit down and I'll explain what's going on." Alice said, "Only you and me" she then added both to tell the others that she wouldn't allow them to come and because the others probably would scare the hell out of her since she didn't know them at all.
Kaeli didn't put down the camera, hands fastened to it like a death grip. "I-I'm not going anywhere. What's going on here! I demand to know the truth," she squeaked not all to demanding really.

"And I demand you shut up and go with Alice before you wake up Raziah," Lucas snarled, eyes flashing dangerously. "She needs to rest and your squabbling will not aid in that. "

Kaeli's lips seemed to sew themselves shut and she looked between the people in front of her and swallowed. Slowly she lowered the camera and fought to get to her hands and knees and then her feet.
Alice sighed at Lucas outburst, but was a bit thankful for it too since it seemed like it had made Kaeli be a bit more willing. She couldn't blame her, Lucas could be really scary if he just wanted to. But maybe she thought that because he almost had pierced her once with a piece of ice. She shivered just by thinking at that day, she had to stop running out into snowstorms.

Once Kaeli was up on her feet Alice started to move towards a close by classroom, though not one of those closest to the others since she wanted Kaeli to feel a bit comfortable at least. She opened a classroom door a bit into the corridor around the corner and walked in to sit down at a chair then she waited for Kaeli to sit down or stand up, whatever she preferred, close by.

"I know this seems very freaky, and that you probably are very scared but I beg you not to tell anyone about what you saw today." Alice started. "And I shall explain why, and I just want you to listen without saying anything before I'm done." She then continued. Her heart was beating faster than hummingbird wings, it felt so nervous to explain these weird things when she didn't understand them completely either.

She started to tell Kaeli a bit about how on her 18th birthday Alecander, her familiar, had suddenly appeared in the bedroom. She also explained how he probably had disappeared from Kaeli's memories because he died. She told her about how she just newly got to know that she was a witch and that the others were her friends that helped her. She didn't go in too much on details though and didn't say anything about how she met Lucas since that wasn't such a good first meeting.

"You can't tell anyone about us being here or show anyone the film. There are people that are out after Lucas and me because of our powers and if more people get to know where we are then we could get kidnapped or killed. Alecander died when he protected me, and if that recording gets out then not only we will be in danger, people in town that has nothing to do with this could get involved while we are trying to defend ourselves."

She stopped speaking and took some deep breath's. Then she waited for a response.
Kaeli listened to all this in silence, staring at the woman in front of her. "A-Alice, I remember Alecander... You dated him for a month or so before he disappeared," She stammered out, surprised that the other would try and pull that wool over her eyes. "I seem to be the only one that does remember him but... But he was here. He beat up your old boyfriend."
Alice got surprised that Kaeli knew about Alecander beating up Erik. How had that gotten out? It wasn't like Erik would brag about being beaten up, though he might have tried to make it look like it was Alecander that started it to make him look bad. But it didn't matter how it had gotten out, it just had. And it didn't matter now when people had forgotten about Alecander, or at least they should have. How could she remember him? She just had to talk with Lucas about it later when Raziah was better.

"Yeah, he did." She said, not knowing if she should be happy or sad about it. On one side, he had protected her, on the other side, he had been in a fight. But they had both been in a lot of fights after that even though those fights hadn't involved normal humans.

"But don't talk about that with anyone, they won't believe you since they don't even remember his existence. Its some weird magic thing." She said casually, that pretty much showed how she had gotten so used to it so even though she didn't understand it she still could go along with it as if it was normal.

"Just don't tell anyone what you saw today, and try to forget about it. Even if people wouldn't take it seriously, if someone from some wizard family would hear about it it could be bad for us. Lucas is on the run from his family and Otaria seems to be in the exact same situation or maybe worse." She told Kaeli, but didn't tell her about her own family. She knew from what Daniel had said that her family wanted her back but didn't seem to know where she was, and Daniel wanted to kill her before his family got to her.
The young woman stared at her for a few moments before she swallowed and looked towards the door. "S-So there are really mythical creatures out there? Forces that can't be controlled except by those like-like you and those out there?" she asked for a moment, processing the information she'd been given slowly. "That's... pretty weird but...awesome as well I suppose. They-They won't kill me will they? It's not a 'I can tell you but then I got to kill ya' kinda thing is it? Because I didn't sign up for that!"
Alice rolled her eyes at the comment, she made them sound like they were in the mafia or something like that. "They won't kill you." She reassured Kaeli, even though she couldn't be a hundred percent certain of how Otaria would take it she at least knew that she wouldn't let them kill a person from her school, or any other person.

"What I understand they went into hiding some hundred years ago because of witch burning and people that wanted to use their powers. Of course it wouldn't become the same thing if they came out today, but people would get scared, and others would want to use that power. It would not end well if people got to know about magic." Alice told Kaeli as she remembered the time when she had asked Alec about why no one knew about witches.

"But even if it came out because of a video clip I don't think that people would believe it. Most people can fake such a video with a movie editing program." Alice then pointed out.
"Of course they wouldn't," Kaeli replied before staring at the woman for a few more moments. "The storm, was that caused by you?" there was a part of this young girl that was a natural journalist, wanting to get all the facts as quickly as possible, as many as possible. "Can you do magic Alice or is it just them? Can I see?" There was a fierce burning in her eyes that showed that she just wanted to learn as much as she could about everything she could.
"No, the storm wasn't cause by me." She said but didn't want to point out that it was done by Lucas. "And yes, I can do magic, but I won't show you." She then continued. Even if she had control over her powers she wouldn't show it just because someone felt like seeing it.

"Go home and forget that this happened. Trust me when I say that you don't want to get involved. Its too dangerous." Alice then finished and rose from her chair so that she could walk out to the others. If someone got involved and hurt because of her and the others then she would never be able to forgive herself.
The young woman shook her head and rose with the other, reaching out to grab her hand. "No! I don't want to not get involved, I am involved already!" she said a bit too eagerly for most. Blushing she looked away and released her hand. "It's just--I don't want to be left out of this. I won't publish anything I swear but don't make me just go home and forget. Alec was nice to me a few times we ran into each other in class. I don't want to forget him and from what you said it makes me think that if I do go now I will."
Alice looked down into the ground. Couldn't kaeri just forget it? Alice would have done anything to just get rid of her powers and forget everything that had happened to her. Why couldn't this normal girl do the same? Because she was curious, she wanted an adventure, she wanted to know the unknown. But once you knew and got involved, if you regretted it then you would never be able to go back again.

"If you haven't forgotten so far then its a very small chance that you will in the future." She started, she couldn't really be certain of that fact but even if it was false Kaeri would forget about her not wanting to forget it, so in the end it wouldn't really hurt her. "We are in a war at the moment, if you get more involved than this then we might not be able to protect you. Alecander died, and there's nothing that says that you wouldn't be next if you happened to be too close to us." She then continued, maybe the term 'war' wasn't completely correct, but if the families came then that was probably what it would become.
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Kaeri straightened a bit, intrigued by the simple use of the word 'war'. "I'd like to know more Alice. I-You lot scared me with that rock thing earlier but I do want to know more. It is how I am. I swear I won't run of and tell anyone if that is what you are afraid of. I may be a reporter and photographer but I don't say stuff that others don't want me to say. Please Alice, let me stay and learn," She said looking over at the girl with what could only be described as puppy dog eyes.
Alice looked at Kaeri with a painful and sad expression. How could she involve Kaeri when she herself didn't know completely what was going on and what Jillian was capable of doing to reach her goal. What if Jillian and Daniel decided to use Kaeri if they somehow got to know about her involvement.

"I don't know. I have to talk to the others first. And right now is not the time to do that." She said after a long moment of thinking. This wasn't her secret alone, and she herself could teach Kaeri next to nothing since she was new to that kind of life herself. If she wanted to watch them and learn about them that would mean learning mostly from Lucas and the others who were teaching Alice. With other words for her to give a promise of Kaeri being able to stay and learn would be to assume that everone else was okay with that. It wasn't her place to decide.
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