When Darkness Ends(Guardians of Eternity,book 12)(65) by Alexandra Ivy
Dante muttered a curse. “Manipulating the entire Commission takes some serious mojo.”
“No shit,” Cyn muttered.
“What happens if they complete the spell?” Dante asked.
Cyn tossed the spell on his desk. “Demons die.”
Dante looked more resigned than surprised. “Sounds familiar.”
“That’s what I thought.” Cyn glanced toward his vast collection of books. He had thousands that spoke of fey powers, but very few that concentrated on human magic-users. He gave a frustrated shake of his head. “Did any of the witches survive your battle?”
“A few,” Dante admitted. “You suspect they might be involved?”
Cyn gave a restless lift of his shoulder. He didn’t know what the hell he suspected.
Only that he couldn’t shake his sense of déjà vu.
“It’s difficult to know, but I think we should consider the possibility,” he said. “What happened to the spell books?”
“If any were bound to Edra they would have been destroyed when she died.” Dante reminded Cyn of the witches’ habit of magically connecting themselves to their most private papers so they would turn to ash the moment of their death. “But to be honest, they were the last of my concern.”
“Understandable.” Cyn nodded toward the spell on his desk. “But it would be nice to know if they had the same hieroglyphics.”
Sensing Cyn’s rising frustration, Fallon briskly headed toward the desk. Sitting in the large wooden seat she pulled out a piece of paper and pen.
She didn’t have any battle skills, or special magic that could help reveal the identity of the magic-user. But she’d trained her entire life to bring order out of chaos.
Okay, her chaos usually included fairy balls and complicated seating arrangements, but still, the principle was the same.
Watching her with a lift of his brows, Cyn leaned against the edge of the desk.
“What are you doing?”
“Making a list,” she said, trying not to feel foolish.
If she couldn’t scry to track down the human, she had to do something.
His brows inched higher. “A list?”
She held his curious gaze. “I’m a princess. That’s what we do.”
Dante choked back a laugh. “Princess, eh? Aiming high, my friend.”
Cyn ignored the other vampire, his attention remaining fixed on Fallon.
“A list of what?”
“What seems to be similar between the two spells.” She put the pen to paper and began to write. “Both are designed to specifically affect demons, both are performed by human magic-users, and both need a large power source to complete them.” She glanced up at Dante. “Would the Commission have the same power as a goddess?”
“More,” he said without hesitation.
“You sound certain,” Cyn said in surprise.
Dante’s lips twisted into a humorless smile. “The Commission has more or less allowed Abby and I to live in peace. They would have her locked and isolated in some sort of prison if they weren’t certain that they can control her if necessary.”
Cyn nodded. “True.”
Dante tilted his head to the side. The dark-haired vampire was built on smaller lines than Cyn—of course, everyone but the Anasso was built on smaller lines—but there was no missing the lethal power that chilled the air around him.
“What makes you believe that the person responsible is a magic-user?” he demanded.
Cyn touched the spell that was lying next to Fallon’s arm. “This spell is fey in origin, but I suspect that it’s been altered by humans.”
Dante clearly sensed there was more. “And?”
Cyn hesitated, waiting for Fallon to give a small nod before revealing the talent she’d kept carefully hidden.
“Fallon was scrying the Oracle’s caves and caught sight of a shrouded male sneaking through the back tunnels,” he said, unconsciously raising his hand to his chest where he’d been hit by the vicious spell. “We suspect he was performing some sort of magic.”
“A Compulsion spell?” the vampire shrewdly deduced.
Cyn shrugged. “That would be my guess.”
Fallon frowned, abruptly realizing that they were missing an obvious flaw in their reasoning.
“If the magic-user completed his spell and has the Commission under his sway, why is he waiting? Shouldn’t he be forcing the Oracles to close the dimensions?”
“I was trapped by the witches for over three hundred years,” Dante said, his anger toward those who held him captive a tangible pulse in the air. “Controlling more than one person with compulsion is massively difficult. I know less than a dozen witches who are capable of compelling more than two or three humans at a time. To try and leash a dozen Oracles . . .” He shuddered. “It would take more power than I can even imagine.”
Cyn tapped his finger on the smooth surface of the desk, clearly in deep thought.
“Or several layers of lesser magic,” he at last said.
Dante nodded. “Yes. That would make sense.”
“You mean he performed the spell several times?” Fallon asked.
“Aye,” Cyn agreed. “And each one tightens the magic-user’s control over the Oracles.”
Fallon absently chewed her bottom lip. “But when he does—”
“He can command them to cast the spell,” Cyn finished her terrifying thought.
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