Tasha opened her eyes slowly, careful not to make any movement and alert her captors. Taking inventory of her injury’s she didn’t think anything was broken, just bruised. Closing her eyes again she remembered the events that had just passed, barely. All she could recall was having something land on her before she could even get into attack mode and hearing Asher cry out. She could sense him behind her and figured they might be in the same boat, keeping quiet and planning their next move. Taking a risk she opened her eyes and lifted her head. They were in a cage in a large room with no windows, which there wouldn’t be if their captors were indeed vampires as she suspected. Asher stirred when she moved, and she brought herself to a sitting position. Looking around she saw that there were no vampires in the room and the only other occupant was a girl who was passed out in a cage next to them.
“ Are you okay?” she whispered to Asher, as he too sat up. Rubbing his shoulder he nodded. She placed her hands on his and sent her magic to his wounds, feeling a torn muscle. It wasn’t too bad and didn’t require too much effort to heal. The cage was large enough that they could each stand, which they did, and walked over to the girl who lay against hers. She seemed human to Asher, but Tasha could sense something about her that was far from it. She moaned in her sleep as Tasha knelt by her and reached out to place her hand on her arm. Tasha pulled back with a jerk and fell on her back side with surprise.
“What is it?” Asher asked helping her to her feet.
Tasha looked at the girl, fear and confusion on her face, “i’m not sure”. The girl had long silver hair that was slightly tangled but not totaly unkempt, giving away the fact that her masters cared enough to make sure she was clean. It could also mean that the vampires that fed on her didn’t want her stench to impede on their feeding as vampires senses were much stronger than that of any ordinary human. Marks scared the girls arms and neck from countless feedings, as well as engravings with black ink; a claim by a very powerful master.
Asher stepped up to the bars and tested them for any weakness. They weren’t electrical and he couldn’t find any flaw in their design.
“Let me try,” Tasha said coming up behind Asher. She placed her hands on the bars and closed her eyes. The bars began to glow brighter and brighter as she used her magic to bring an intense heat to her hands. Asher took a few steps back, sweat on his brow.
“Don’t blow us up please, I have a thing against cremation.” Asher looked at the girl again as she stirred once more, but this time he heard a growl from her direction. Suddenly he heard a snap and his attention was brought back to Tasha. She stood with the two bars in her hands and a smirk on her face.
“And you thought I was useless,” she said as she threw the bars aside. Squeezing through the gap both Asher and Tasha surveyed the land from the outside, noting the only exit as being a large door. The room was about the size of a small gymnasium and more than likely underground. Tasha had already put her hands on the bars of the girls cage when Asher heard voices echoing from the other side of the door.
“Hurry,” he instructed as he stalked towards the door with the two bars from their cage to wait for any intruders. Tasha snapped the bars as the large door creaked open to reveal a very pale individual. He took in the sight of Tasha holding the metal bars in her hands. She saw in his eyes the moment he registered that the other captive was not with her, the same moment that Asher brought one of his weapons down on the vampires head.
“That won’t kill him you know,” Tasha said setting the bars aside and moving over to the unconscious girl.
“ No, but I don’t have a stake, a bible or a torch. He’ll be out long enough for you to get over here and do your job.” Asher pushed the door closed and dragged the vampire closer to the cage and kept watch while Tasha lifted the girls head. Something unknown oozed from the girl and met Tasha’s healing ability. She had no time now to explore it and for now just sent healing to the girls injury’s. An old break in her wrist from a violent feeding perhaps, and various bruising. She was also strongly bonded to a vampire, and it was an old one. The girl only looked about twenty but the bond she shared with her master felt quite old. The only way to completely sever the bond would be to kill the vampire, but as a temporary fix Tasha built a sort of barrier so that the girl would wake up from the command she was given to sleep. She moaned and her eyes fluttered. It was hard to tell how long it had been since she was allowed to regain consciousness.
“ Can you take her? I don’t think we can wait for her to wake up, and I can better deal with anyone we run into,” Tasha said stepping out of the cage and over to the vampire. Asher ignored the jab at his ability as a lowly human and went to the girl. Severely malnourished she didn’t weigh very much so she wasn’t much of a burden. He turned his back to Tasha once he had the girl out of the cage to shield them both from the vampire’s ashes. Tasha dusted off her hands and smiled.
“Hopefully the rest of them will be that easy,” she said as she stuffed two of the metal bars in her sash like swords.
“ Don’t get your hopes up,” Asher looked towards the door. “ We should get moving, that vampire wasn’t alone. His buddy must be getting worried.” Tahsa nodded and they both went to the door. Taking a deep breath she lit her hand with fire and opened the door, enough to squeeze through. No vampire rushed at her so she moved a bit further past the safety of the door. Signalling that all was safe, she waited for Asher to be at her back before she looked around the corner. Lights were strung along like in an old mine and the walls looked as though they were carved out of the earth, confirming her suspicions that they were indeed underground. Tahsa closed her eyes and stretched out her senses, feeling for other vampires. They didn’t have a heartbeat, or a soul but she would still be able to sense another entity. Tasha frowned.
“Anything?” Asher asked quietly. She shook her head. This was strange. To have two hunters left unguarded was very unusual. She was wondering if there was more to this than it seemed. Tasha jerked her head and they were off again, slowly down the passage way. She listened, as did Asher for any signs of the enemy. They had walked for only a few minutes down the twisty tunnel when the girl stirred. Her eyes opened fully this time, her eyes a golden honey with a hint of green. She cried out and flailed a bit before Tahsa placed her hands on the girls forehead. She immediately quieted. That was the last fuss she put up for a while. They continued walking cautiously, stopping every few paces to listen.
“It shouldn’t be this easy,” Asher whispered under his breath, knowing Tasha would hear him. She nodded.
“ I think we’re near the surface,” she raised her hand and he saw that her flame danced as a draft blew it around. They stopped suddenly when they heard footsteps coming their way. Tasha pushed Asher and his charge behind a crook in the wall and stood at the ready. A vampire came into view, and much like his comrade was shocked to find their prisoners escaping. He yelled something in Spanish but Tasha quieted him quickly with a burst of flame that had him in ashes within moments.
“He yelled for help, we’d better move,” Asher said rearranging the girl in his arms. She wasn’t heavy, but awkward, and he was itching to kill some vampires. They moved further down the tunnel and spotted a large door. Symbols were etched around the border, Tasha assumed to keep things out, and in.
“ Amatuers,” she muttered going to place her hand on the magic. It hummed under her fingers as if to protest her touch, but she quickly silenced it with a bit of flame that disintegrated the tight webbing of the spell, rendering it harmless.
“ They’ve got a green witch in their group. I wonder how much she over charged them,” she laughed despite the circumstances they were in. Tasha pushed on the door and it swung open to reveal a rising sun, and the reason for the spells.
“ How clever to have a blocking spell to keep out the sunlight,” Tasha chuckled. They moved quickly to the outside where no vampire would follow as the sun was just peeking up on the horizon. Looking around they found themselves in an abandoned field without a vehicle, or knowledge of where they were.
“ Let me try and contact Fay,” Tasha said plunking herself down and closing her eyes. Asher too sat, placing the girl beside him, her head in his lap. Again he heard a growl rumbling in her chest and looked to Tasha who was in a deep trance.
“Hey, you’re safe,” he whispered in her ear. Looking her over he found even more scars, bite marks and from beatings. He winced at a burn mark on her shoulder. What she wore wouldn’t be considered decent in any public gathering. She wore what basically looked like a sheet of silk wrapped to cover her breasts and privates, but left plenty of flesh exposed for optimal access for her master to feed. The tattoos that laced her arms and legs looked like stripes from far away, but after a closer look were found to be intricate designs and symbols that almost bled together.
The girls eyes snapped open. Asher scrambled away when all his senses suddenly went crazy, telling him to get away.
“ I’m not going to hurt you,” he managed to say as she rolled over to her side. She was panting as if that tiny movement caused her enormous effort. The girl eyed him, her look pleading, “ Help me,” she whispered hoarsely, her English tainted slightly by an accent he couldn’t place.
“ You’re safe,” he repeated, and crawled slowly over to her. He peeked in Tasha’s direction and saw that she was watching the girl as well. “ We are going to get you some help. Our friends are coming to get us, and you will be safe.” Tasha nodded to confirm this and Asher sighed in relief to himself that she was able to reach her sister. The girl closed her eyes and a look of relief passed over her face as well, as if calmed by his words. She was safe.