Zarin stood in front of the eerie old house where he believed the ancient demon stayed. This ancient being needed to stay away from Heaven. He was dangerous, and he was using and confusing her.
Since he came into her life, she had changed and it wasn’t a change he liked. She had always wanted to be free. He couldn’t understand why she suddenly wanted to become a ruler. Zarin didn’t want that lifestyle for her. He wanted her to be happy and be free from royal duties and obligations.
But Heaven was heading the opposite direction, and it caused her to be busy most of the time. She was working so hard for something that wouldn’t benefit her, something that would bound her to a lot of responsibilities.
It also made her also more distant, and she stayed angry with him longer. It felt like she couldn’t understand him anymore.
Zarin remembered when they were younger, when she would always come to him first, confide in him and ask for his advice. Their friendship was always a priority to her, and she would do anything to uphold it. Even if it meant that she apologized first every time they fought.
Now it felt like their friendship wasn’t important anymore. It felt like he didn’t matter to her, that he had no place or role in her life anymore. He wanted his friend back. He knew she was still there, but this demon was confusing her.
Zarin teleported himself into the old house. It was dark inside, but he could still see. He tried to listen to any sound, but he could hear nothing. Still his hands rested on his daggers, which he had dipped in poison. There was no other way he could defeat an ancient demon.
Suddenly he sensed something behind him. Drawing his daggers, he turned around fast. A few feet away stood the ancient demon. His silver eyes were gleaming in the dark.
He did not look like the last time he saw him. This time he looked dead. He was all bones and his skin was ashy. If it wasn’t for the power that emanated from him, Zarin would have thought he would faint anytime soon.
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But the ancient demons stood steadily. His mare presence was threatening, but Zarin tried to not be intimidated.
“What are you doing here?” Asked the demon, his voice vibrating in the empty hall.
“I came to tell you to stay away from Heaven.”
“Or what?” He asked, taking a few steps forward. Zarin tightened his grip on his daggers.
“Her family and I won’t tolerate you hurting her.”
“If you came all the way here with nothing but small threats, you embarrass yourself.” The demon scoffed.
“What do you want from her?” Zarin asked, ignoring his remark.
“What to you want? What are your intentions for coming here?”
Zarin became annoyed. “I came here to protect my friend.”
“As a true protector you should put your pride aside.” The demon said.
Zarin paused. what did he mean? How was he being prideful?
“More than protecting your friend, you came here to prove something.”
“I came here to prove that I can do anything for her. Even risk my life.”
The demon shook his head. “How romantic. Proving to be her protector at the expense of her safety.”
The demon’s words felt like a slap in the face. Zarin didn’t think he was putting Heaven’s safety at risk. He was going to protect her. He could not just sit by and do nothing.
“I won’t let you by a finger on her.”
Now the demon’s lips curved into a smile. “Don’t worry. I won’t be using my fingers. Only my teeth.”
Fury made the blood in Zarin’s veins boil. He could not control the urge to to fight him despite knowing the danger. Only a stab and the poison would do the rest, he thought.
The demon’s expression turned serious as and Zarin realized his body language exposed him.
“I would think carefully before making that mistake, if I were you.” He warned.
But you are not me, Zarin thought, and decided to attack when Heaven and Gina suddenly materialized in the hall.
“Zarin!” Heaven called, her eyes filled with panic as she looked between him and the ancient demon.
She hurried and placed herself between him and the other demon as if protecting him.
“I am sorry. He won’t bother you again.” She promised the ancient demon.
Why was she apologizing for him?
He moved her out of his way, but Gina blocked him. “Follow me quietly if you want us to leave this place alive.” Her voice was low and lethal. He knew she was furious.
Before he could think, she grabbed his arm and all three of them were back home.
“What were you thinking?” Gina yelled as soon as they were back home.
Heaven crossed her arms over her chest and looked at him, disappointed. He was tired of that look.
“I wanted to make sure that he wouldn’t come to bother you again.” Zarin explained, turning to Heaven.
“And you thought he would just listen? Didn’t you think going to his home with daggers might make him angrier?” His actions appalled Gina, but she didn’t understand him.
“I could not just sit and do nothing.”
“Why do you feel the need to do something?” Now Gina was yelling again.
“Don’t you? After all, he did to her.” He asked.
Heaven just stood there. It was like she didn’t know what to say, and Zarin hoped she would say something.
“Heaven, say something.” He urged.
“What do you want me to say?” She asked. “You never listen to me or respect my wishes and choices. That demon that you just provoked has lost his whole family and was locked inside a coffin for a thousand years. He is grieving and angry and despite a curse who forced him to bite me, he is resisting the urge to renew the mark which put him in the state you just found him in. Now I don’t know what he might decide to do.”
Zarin was confused. Why didn’t she tell him all this earlier?
“Yes. And it was witches who killed his family and locked him inside.” Gina added.
Now he understood why Heaven was afraid.
“I won’t let him hurt you. I promise.” Zarin said.
He didn’t know exactly how he would protect her, but he would find a way to kill this ancient demon, or maybe he would just lock him inside again with the help of a witch. He would need Irene.
“It’s not me I am worried for.” She said looking at him.
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