Halcyon Days: Chapter 7

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Calm Before The Storm

Ramadan started the following week. Mat gifted me on the first day home-made pickles of cucumbers and pineapple, and an invitation to join them during iftar. Already I could smell the delicious chicken briyani from Mat's kitchen. The aroma was a mainstay of my childhood. When Father was away on his frequent business trips, Mat took me and Sharon in. We grew up literally at his table.

The year was moving too quickly. Soon it would be Seventh Month. Mother called it 'Gui Jie', Hungry Ghost Festival. I was finally getting somewhere with the Dark Claws, with Cedric now working on my side with the threat of expulsion from our clan and a painful death hanging over his head. Leaders of the clans were surfacing names now, and carrying out their own purges. Some, I heard, were just entire sub-clans gone overnight, no questions asked. Drake law. Humanity normally dared not interfere with us. At least we did not continue the tradition of duelling in drake form.

There was still the matter of the Dökkálfar. What promises had Father made with them? With me as the blood price? How powerful was the Maleficent?

Back in the office, I turned off my cell phone. Too much bad news with bombings and people being absolute dicks with one another. My own species had the same kind of people too and I had to get rid of them as soon as possible.

Shu Yin had contacted me. I was not surprised to see her text. "We are in Tower Time," her message went. She was a close relation of Jan Xu, a niece or the child of a second cousin. She had the energy of her aunt, the bravado I saw in Jan. The last I saw her she was also reckless as hell.

"What is Tower Time?" I asked, confused with the terms people were constantly throwing at me.

"Sorry, a tarot short-hand," she explained, with a smiley emoticon to add as buffer. "It just means that false structures and institutions are falling down as we speak. Revelations will shake us. The things we hold true are revealed as false."

"Apt," I texted back, feeling something cold crawl up my back. "Then what can we do?"

"Then we rebuild."

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