Castle Roland

From Trick to Treat

by Jeikor

In Progress

Chapter 28

Posted: 5 Sep 16

From Trick To Treat
Copyright © 2015, 2016 by Jeikor

"What are you doing?" yelled Zander watching in horror as Zane appeared to be draining the witch who had been attacked by the Rogue.

"He's killing her," snapped one of the other women witches that was trying to get at Zane. She then rushed at Zander.

He took a step back and raised the only weapon he had to defend himself; his knife turned sword. He prepared to disable the woman with the sword when she came to an abrupt stop and could get no closer.

Zander glanced over to Zane and noticed sweat running down the sides of his face. Sweat! Why would he be sweating? True, he was holding two shield spells but that shouldn't make him sweat especially if he was feeding.

Trying mind to mind contact Zander came up against a wall due to the intense concentration Zane was using. It wasn't a conscious block. Just his mind was too occupied to allow anyone or anything in. Zander quit trying when he heard a gasp from one of the two male witches.

In an awe-filled voice the witch proclaimed, "He's doing a blood cleansing!"

"A What!?!" The shout came from, well, everybody in the room except for the male witch, Zane and the witch he was working on.

"A blood cleansing. Apparently that other vampire, a Rogue you call it?" He asked looking at Zander who nodded. "Infected Abigail with his venom. She would have turned into a vampire."

"Or died," added Zander somberly.

When Roger, the male witch, heard this he looked over where Zane was busy working on Abigail. He too saw the rivulets of sweat trickling down the young vampire's face.

"Everyone needs to relax and move away from these boys. Now!" commanded Roger forcefully. "The small blonde is using too much energy protecting the two of them and performing a cleansing."

All the witches obeyed and moved back to watch. One of them asked, "What exactly is he doing and why does it take so much power?"

Roger answered in quiet yet carrying voice, "Blood cleansing is a very advanced, deep magic. I am surprised the boy knows it much less is willing to attempt it. Basically it is a lot like dialysis. He is taking Abigail's blood into his mouth, extracting the spreading venom with magic then giving it back to her. He has to keep going until he gets all the venom which is made harder by the fact that the venom continues to try to spread."

"Her color's starting to come back," Magda, the witch that tried to attack Zander, said excitedly. "It's working! He's done it!"

She rushed over to aid her friend with Zander right behind her. As Abigail began to sit up, Zane slumped over in exhaustion. With motivation and vampire speed Zander got there first barely catching his boyfriend before Zane's head hit the floor.

Cradling Zane's head in his lap Zander slid his backpack off, pulled it around and dug out a bag of blood. Before he got it open the other male witch, Henry, stopped him with a hand on his arm.

"That won't help him much at this point," Henry spoke gently. Then he retrieved a small silver knife from behind his back, made a small cut on his forearm and held it over Zane's mouth.

"I freely offer my blood to you. Drink and be refreshed." The witch then squeezed the cut causing blood to ooze out and run down his arm into Zane's mouth that was being held open by Zander. After three minutes Zane finally began to stir and Henry withdrew his arm.

"May I?" asked Zander indicating the cut on the witch's arm. Henry nodded and placed his arm in front of the dark haired teen. Zander swiped across the wound once with his tongue and Henry watched in amazement as it slowly closed leaving no sign of a scar.

"Now that everyone is recovered, can I ask why you're here?" Roger all but demanded.

"Not to mention, what's going on?" asked Magda still holding Abigail. "Why are vampires fighting each other?"

"We came to see the book on Romani magic," Zane started weakly getting stronger as he spoke. "The one by Rinaldo."

"The Rogues, vampires trained in magic to wreak havoc, are trying to get to the books first. Or at least prevent us from getting to them," added Zander pulling Zane to his feet.

During this exchange Henry had quietly observed the boys, Zane in particular. When he had searched Zane's eyes his mind was made up.

"Come this way, " Henry motioned toward the door on the left side of the room. "I will show you the book."

Several jaws dropped at that statement in disbelief. One of the other female witches by the name of Elzbeth voiced their concern.

"What! Without any discussion or . . or . . anything?"

Henry stopped, turned back to the room and said, "Look at him! Look at his heart, his aura or into his eyes. The eyes of Rinaldo!"

Zane paused and waited as the others looked at him using the different means mentioned by Henry. All of them nodded their agreement to allow the two young looking vampires to see the Rinaldo book of magic. Magda continued to study Zane's face closely; when she was satisfied she spoke.

"You're a descendant of Rinaldo?" It was half question and half statement.

"Yes," was Zane's simple, emotionless answer.

"Show them everything," directed Magda. "This concerns the prophecy."

Henry inclined his head in acknowledgement and ushered the Z's out of the room. When the teens looked around the room the only things they saw were two large desks with rolltop covers and one empty bookshelf.

Before Zander could voice his confusion over being led to an empty room or Henry could begin the revealing incantation, Zane cocked his head to the right then to the left and finally walked straight to the left side of the bookshelf. Standing in front of the apparently empty set of shelves, the blonde vampire briefly studied each of the four shelves.

Zane then reached onto the third shelf with his right hand, appeared to grasp something and pull it off the shelf. As soon as it cleared the shelf the book Zane held onto came into view.

With a shake of his head and a wry smile Henry commented, "There is no doubt you are a Rinaldo. No one else could have found that book through the wards and guards that have been placed on it."

Zander walked up to his partner and checked the book he had. It was the volume they had come to study. He wrapped Zane in a huge hug and sent a silent message letting him know how proud of him Zander was.

"Pick a desk to study at. Spend as much time as you need." Henry gestured at the two desks then added as he exited, "If you have questions find one of us. We'll be around the museum."

"Thank you." "Thanks."

Unlike with the other books where they only looked for usable spells and information, Zane felt an urge to read this one from front to back. He relayed this to Zander so they sat down at the nearest desk and started reading. This volume was the largest one they had yet seen and it took them somewhere between two and three hours to read through it.

Henry or one of the other witches would stick their head inside the room from time to time while the teens read. They always walked away smiling at the sight of the two boys with heads almost touching as they hunched over the book reading.

Roger was the one who happened to pop in just as the boys looked up from the last page.

"Do you have any questions?" he asked when he caught the Z's eyes.

"Yes," answered Zane hesitantly. "But could everybody meet together? I would like to get all the information I can at one time."

"Certainly," agreed Roger. "I'll let everyone know. The museum will close in a couple of hours or so and we can meet then. In the meantime feel free to read any of our other books."

When the boys turned toward the bookshelf it was suddenly full of books on every shelf. Zane and Zander flipped through nearly every book there but didn't find one that struck their fancy to sit down with. Zander wasn't much for reading except to gather specific information and Zane couldn't concentrate on anything other than the prophecy and the mission.

After closing the museum, Roger brought the whole coven to the room the Z's were in then led them to another, larger room with a round table and lots of chairs. Everyone got as comfortable as possible in the hard, high-backed chairs available and the witches turned their attention to Zane.

His mouth suddenly dry Zane hemmed and hawed trying to get started. He would rather face fifty Rogues than have to talk in front of a group. Zander, seeing the discomfort of his boyfriend, simply laid his hand on Zane's arm and left it there. Zane smiled his appreciation of the gesture, took a deep breath, cleared his throat and began.

"We are searching through Rinaldo's writings for information on or about or relating to a prophecy often just called, The Prophecy. The small bit we have come across mentions three people: Rinaldo's Bane, Rinaldo's Child and Samhain's Son. What we really hope to find is a book that contains the entire prophecy and an explanation would be nice, too. Anything you know will help. The book here mentioned Europe so do any of you know where the book we need might be?"

The witches were deathly silent; Magda, Henry and Roger exchanged glances before giving slight nods. Henry spoke for them.

"We know of two places in Europe where the book of the prophecy might be."

At these words Zander dove into Zane's backpack to get his notes of places to visit.

"We found two places in a reference book that are in Europe that we had planned to visit. Look and see if they are the same places that you know of," Zane implored of the group as Zander handed over the page of notes.

The coven passed the notes around the table for all to see but it was the main three: Henry, Magda and Roger, that did the speaking.

Roger spoke up first, "I'm sorry boys but they don't match."

Next was Henry, "The places we know of are small villages; what you have are universities in larger towns."

Magda went last after a thoughtful look, "Let me see that page again." She studied the last two entries on the page rubbing her chin. "Yes. That works out about right." She quickly jotted a few words next to each of the European universities and handed the page back to Zane. She added, "They actually do match. The small villages we are aware of are not far outside the towns where the two schools you have on your list are located. I'm guessing it's the same for them as for us. The book is listed as being in the school's library while it is actually hidden and protected by a small group of magic users. I wrote it down for you."

"Thank you very much," said Zane with real emotion. "This really helps."

"Is there anything else we can do for you?" asked Elzbeth kindly.

Zane and Zander looked at each other before Zander answered, "Well, . . we need to get to Europe somehow."

"We do have a couple of flying spells but haven't tried them yet," interrupted Zane. "Even if they work well I'm not sure we have the strength to make it across the ocean."

"We would need ID's, passports and help buying plane tickets," continued Zander after Zane's contribution to the conversation.

"We can take care of all that," said another of the witches named Penelope. "Let me get pictures of you with my phone and we'll have it done in next to no time."

In just over an hour Zane and Zander were headed for the Boston airport with new ID's, matching passports and two tickets for the next flight to Barcelona, Spain. They were told it was the first flight available that went close to one of the places they needed to visit.

They made it to Boston about an hour before their flight was due to leave which was just enough time to check in and go through security. The Z's were both nervous and excited since neither of them had ridden in a plane before. Zander had come to America on a ship before planes had been invented.

After getting over the initial excitement of takeoff and watching out the window, Zane and Zander settled under a blanket holding hands and cuddling until the signal for landing came on.

Once disembarked the teens couldn't help but rubberneck at the sights and sounds of a new country and culture. They walked around the city randomly, up one street and down another. At one point they found themselves on the La Rambla, Barcelona's most famous boulevard. The teens watched the multitude of street performers with fascination as they wandered through the street finally turning into the Placa Reial with a beautiful fountain in its center.

During their ramblings the Z's kept catching glimpses of tall, Gothic-like spires and were curious to see the rest. They steadily drew nearer to it as they travel through the city until they at last stood below it. The Sagrada Familia, as they learned it was called, was a Giant Basilica that was started in 1882 and still had a ways to go before it would be finished.

The teen vampires considered taking a tour of the inside but after learning the wait would be a couple of hours decided against it. By dark they were lucky enough to be passing the Magic Fountain of Montjuic in the midst of its wonderful display of water, lights and music. They stood entranced for several minutes before Zane shook himself then Zander and they hurried out of the city to the north.

Their first stop in Europe was in the small country of Andorra on the other side of the Pyrenees Mountains. The village lay a few miles outside the capital city of Andorra la Vella.

Zane and Zander traveled throughout most of the night, halting just as dawn arrived and found a hidden spot in some woods to spend the day. After their period of meditation the teens downed the blood packed for them by Master Kwon then resumed their traveling. They were in the foothills of the Pyrenees by dusk and searched for a place to rest for the day.

When they were ready to set out again that night Zander shocked Zane to his core. "I think we should split up and check both villages at the same time."

"What!?! But . . but . . . ," sputtered Zane not believing his ears. "Why?!"

"We're running out of time and you know it," returned Zander urgently.

"But . . . what . . what about the prophecy?" Zane asked hesitantly. "We're supposed to be as one."

"I don't think we can do that until we've been apart and we haven't separated for over eighteen years!"

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