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Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Watcher's Guild: Sweet Nephilim Ch. 15 Pt. 1

Hey all,

I hope things are going well for you in your neck of the woods.  We've got less than two more weeks here in Argentina.  I'll miss this beautiful country, but I've got so many ideas for stories I don't know which to choose for my latest series.  One thing about being on tour is I never run out of inspiration.

And speaking of inspiration, I wonder what Amaris and Eran will be inspired to do in today's installment.  Let's see, shall we?  Enjoy!!!

The Watcher's Guild: Sweet Nephilim


Chapter Fifteen

“No, no little angel.  Slash, parry and then block.”
Amaris muttered under her breath as she followed her guardian’s instructions.  Narrowing her eyes, she hefted her sword and twisted her body away before slashing downwards with all her strength.  Eran easily blocked it and shook his head again.
“You are still telegraphing your movements.  I know what you are doing before you do it.  Try it again.”
Pushing back her long hair, she remembered when she had looked forward to learning how to fight.  But her benevolent teacher had become a dictator, pushing her harder and harder each day.  She was ready to run him through just to have some time to rest.
If she could get past his guard.
“I am not,” she objected, flexing her sore hand.  The constant clash of weapons had her muscles cramping.  “I’m doing just what you told me.  I don’t look at you.  I don’t look at my weapon.  I just feel the moves and then do them.”
Eran sighed.  “That may be so, but when you twist or turn, you’re still leading with your elbow.  Every time.  And every time I know which way you are going.  You must never do the same thing.  It will lead to disaster when you fight for real.”
“I’ll give you a real fight,” Amaris grumbled as she stepped backwards and took up the now familiar fighting stance.  She’d been practicing these same moves for almost a month now and no matter what she tried, she couldn’t get it right.  Or maybe her instructor was just too damn picky.  Whatever the case, all she wanted to do was toss her sword on the ground and go get a beer.  Training was hard work.
But instead she took a deep breath and then leaped at Eran.  Their swords sang as they met.  Metal to metal, the shock of it raced down her arms, but she didn’t falter.  Instead she let her fury flow through her as she parried his blows, waiting for the right moment to make her own move.  Sweat dotted her forehead and burned her eyes, but she didn’t take the time to wipe it away.  She was determined to do it right this time.  To show her teacher she did know what she was doing.
Then there is was…a slight opening.  Without hesitating, Amaris dipped and twisted, pulling her sword down and then up to the right.  But instead of finding its place against Eran’s breastbone, it came up against cold steel and was torn from her hand, spinning away as if it was a feather.  A second later, her feet were swept out from under her and she went down hard on her back. 
The fall knocked the breath out of her so she just lay there…fuming, her mouth opening and closing like a stranded fish.  Eran stormed over and glared down at her.
“Do you not listen?” he shouted.  “I told you not to show me what you were going to do!  A demon all the way in Hell could see that move coming.  You must not let your anger lead you.  Do as I say, Amaris.  You know the consequences.”
His reprimand was the last straw.  If she’d been holding her sword she would have thrown it at him.  “That’s it,” she gasped out, struggling to sit up.  She matched his glare with one of her own.  “I’m done.  Obviously there has been a mistake, and I don’t belong here!  You go find another Nephilim to use and abuse.  I’m so finished with this!  And with you!”
Eran saw immediately he’d finally pushed her too hard.  Her blue eyes were filled with tears, and there was such despair on her face he knew yelling at her would do no more good.  He throttled back his temper and tried to calm himself. 
He knew he’d been pressing faster and training her more intensely than he would be another Nephilim.  But the fact was she was different.  And he had to make sure she was ready for whatever came at her.  Asmodeous hadn’t been heard from since he’d lost the second temptation on the rooftop, but the Watcher knew it was just a matter of time.  The demon would be back and Amaris had to be ready for him.
But for some reason, his little angel couldn’t seem to grasp the basics of fighting.  Oh, she understood what was required—she was an intelligent woman after all.  She just wasn’t able to transfer the things he’d taught her into actual fighting.  It was frustrating…for both of them.  And that frustration was driving a wedge between them. 
At first it hadn’t mattered.  What went on during the training period didn’t leak over into their aerie home.  Once the swords were put down, they lived and loved and enjoyed each other.  He learned she liked really hot showers, and she discovered he was ticklish.  He loved spicy foods, while her eyes lit up when he brought home a plate of chocolate covered brownies.  They talked long into the night about their pasts, and Amaris was enthralled over the many places he’d seen and battles he’d fought.  He was just as curious about her life growing up as an only child of two very loving parents.
After only a few weeks, Eran knew the question her mother had asked during the good-bye tea could now be answered.
He did love Amaris.
Not just as a student or a fellow angel, but as a man loves the one woman who completes him.  He wasn’t sure it was normal—but then nothing about his little angel was like any other Nephilim, so he’d given up worrying about what was customary.  All he knew was she was the most important thing in his life, and he prayed daily Jehovah would not separate them.
But it looked as if the Lord wasn’t going to be the one responsible for that.  Eran was doing a great job of alienating Amaris all by himself.  And even though he knew it was for her own good, he couldn’t seem to stop.  Yet it destroyed him to see anger and distrust growing between them. For the last week it was as though they were enemies not lovers.
“I mean it, Eran,” she snarled, breaking into his thoughts.  “I don’t care any more.  Nothing I do is good enough for you.  I can’t do this.  You’ve made a mistake.”  Her eyes darkened.  “I’ve made a mistake.”
His gut twisted at her meaning.  “You don’t mean that, Amaris.  You are angry and tired and frustrated.  It will get better.  This I swear.”  But even as he said it, he wondered.  By this time most Nephilim were well on their way to learning the warrior craft.
She must have seen the doubt in his eyes.  “That’s bull and you know it.”  Clambering to her feet, she stalked across their training arena at the top of one of the Blue Mountains and picked up her sword.  She sighed as she wiped dirt off the glistening blade.  “I was so proud when you gave this to me.  It fit my hand perfectly.  I knew I’d do great things with it.  But I can’t.”
Eran remembered that day, too.  He’d left her sleeping and flown up into Heaven to get her sword from the angelic armorer.  The burly angel was full of questions about the female Nephilim, but Eran had been too much in a hurry to answer any of them.  He couldn’t wait to get back to Amaris and see the look on her face when he gave her this most important gift.  And the awe and pride in her eyes when he handed it to her hadn’t disappointed him.  Neither had her kiss of thanks that wound up putting them a full hour behind on their training.
Where had it all gone so wrong?


Oh no!  I never thought Amaris would have this kind of trouble.  I wonder what's going on?  Check back next Sunday to find out!

Until then!!!

CJ England

Follow Your Dreams

1 comment:

Phylis said...

Thanks CJ! Looking forward to next Sunday!