Chapter 22 - Day 6: Coping Mechanism

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Chapter 22

Day 6:

Coping Mechanism

My fingers tightened around the neck of the flute containing a rich vintage wine poured during dinner. Helena's fingers smoothed against my wrist, her eyes never wavering from Zircah and Gabriel. Fey's thoughts behind me were as shocked as everyone else's. My skin heated from the anger and her hand gripped around my wrist harder.

What did she expect me to do, not get angry?

Everyone at the table had grown quiet, watching my reaction and waiting for Gabriel's answer. The Archaic angels joined us tonight as well as Ezikiel and Aira, Brooke and oddly enough even Joseph with his dark striking hair.

"Um," Gabriel shifted in his seat. The creak of the chair echoed through the silent dining hall. "I'm sorry, I don't quite-"

 "Well, boy, I asked you-"

"I'm very aware of what you've asked," Gabriel interrupted and I squeezed harder. "I just don't understand why you have asked it."

Zircah leaned toward him. If somebody dropped a pin, I'm sure the fifteen people at this table would hear it bounce. "I'm sure I'm not the only one in this realm intrigued by yours and the Goddess of Power's relationship."

The glass broke.

"Zircah," I interjected trying and failing to keep the sharpness out of my voice. . "Must you-"

"Nonsense it's fine. Its like a huge family dinner. Fey would you clean that..."

Out of the corner of my eye I could see Fey make a move toward me but I held up my hand to stop her. "What are you doing?"

"I'm intrigued." He repeated, keeping his mischievous eyes on Gabriel. "So?"

Gabriel looked at me before and then back at Zircah. "It's not really anyone's business."

For the longest time no one said a word, not even Zircah. The feeling of apprehension faded slowly as everyone returned to their meals. I wanted nothing more than to leave but what would that be doing? Giving in. And I wouldn't. I'm sure I'd given in enough just by breaking the damn glass.

From the corner of my eye, I could see Axel smile.

They spoke of the upcoming ball in four days and the impending guests. Cassiel was meant to be there. I wasn't aware of much that was meant to happen but I knew I was playing that stupid song.

I want to show you something,

My gaze landed on Perses but he wasn't paying me any mind. 

We'll go now. Dinner is over.

And before I could even say anything, Perses announced our and I mean, our departure. Helena pressed a kiss to my head and nudged me out of my seat to follow him. Of course, Zircah glared a giant hole in my back as well as the other Elders - excluding Helena of course. 

Perses smiled at me. "How have you been this past week?"

"I've been coping." And truly I had been.

This past week had been the longest six days of my entire life. Two earth months. I hadn't gotten over this worldlag as a few had called it. It's been... weird. Filling my days wasn't as easy as I thought. Ten days in one, I ended up reading a whole section in the library one my fourth day, sitting under the Forbidden Tree. I've never slept this much before. And to be honest by yesterday I realised that this wasn't really a punishment. It was more freedom. Aside from the bands on my arm, I could roam where I wished. I hadn't been back to the beach, I didn't want to push it just yet. But last night I'd released my wings inside The Elder's Keep. It was the only place to go without gaining too much attention. 

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