Apollo couldn’t move. He wanted to open his mouth, but his dry tongue was immobile against his cracked lips. He felt a weight on his shoulders.
“Apollo…” He could her a weak voice calling out to him, but whose could it be? Apollo struggled to breathe, to move, to talk. Finally, after what felt like an eternity, he felt his eyes drifting open on his own. His head was pounding and his entire body felt pain as he tried to turn to examine his surroundings. “Oh thank the watcher, you’re alright.”
“Frost…” Apollo recognized the voice. It wasn’t as saucy as it normally was. No, it sounded deflated, like it belonged to a defeated person.
“I’m sorry…I can’t really move.” Apollo looked at her laid out figure and struggled to get up to help her.
“Damnit…” He cursed as he saw the rope strung tightly across his body. “Are you alright?”
“Yeah…just a little weak. I can’t use my powers. Your friend…he took most of the blow. He’s been laying like that for awhile but I’m sorry, I can’t move…” She let out a harsh breath.
“Don’t move, rest,” Apollo told her. He let his eyes wander the room. They were no doubt locked up in some sort of cell. Finally, he looked down at Tommy and his breath caught in his lungs.
“What the hell!” Apollo shouted. “What did Damian do?” Tommy was covered in blood from head to toe and he lay motionlessly on the ground. Apollo prayed that his childhood friend was breathing right now.
“The reason that Damian is the headmaster…he’s got pure vampire blood. Everyone else in Moonlight Falls…their ancestry can trace back to some human. Not Damian’s…he’s a vampire through and through…he, he can do things that other vampires can’t…I thought he was on our side..I’m sorry…it’s my fault….” Frost tried to push herself up but fell back down.
“Stop it! Don’t blame yourself for this. I’m the one who wanted to come here. It’s my fault,” Apollo said. “It’s my fault that everything is so screwed up.”
“Finally you’re saying something that makes sense, golden boy,” David said, coming into view.
“David….” Apollo choked out. “How could you…”
“Business is business Apollo, dear,” David smirked.
“Tommy…he meant nothing to you? Look at him!” Apollo exclaimed.
David turned his back to Apollo and leaned up against the metal bars of the cell. “I hate all of you humans. You’re despicable. I could never love one of you. Pitiful, when you guys let your heart decide instead of your brain. We didn’t even think you’d actually take the bait with Tommy, but you did. Otherwise, he’d have died much sooner.”
“What’s your problem!?” Apollo shouted.
“My problem? You damn humans are my problem. I don’t think you guys deserve to share the same world with us supernaturals. You’re all disgusting. You use us and when you’re done sucking us dry, you toss us to the curb. I’m an imaginary friend, and this girl, she was my best friend, until she turned about ten and forgot all about me. It isn’t fun Apollo, but you’ll never get it, because you’re the guy that everyone has their eyes on.” David hit the bars and they shook loudly, causing Apollo’s body to jump. “I can’t wait to see what Damian has in store for you suckers.”
“It’s no wonder she forgot about you, I mean you can’t keep your mouth quiet for a minute. Not very likeable, are you?” Apollo knew that voice. It was the one that was yelling at him just a few hours prior.
“Wow, today must be our lucky day. We’ve been trying to catch you for years, and all it took was this little brat to draw you out? The same little brat that told us all about your precious Ella. Ha!” David seemed like he was having the time of his life. There was no remorse on his features at all. It was sickening.
“Him and I are go to have a little talk later about that, but it doesn’t concern you at all, so mind your own damn business,” Ethan said smugly. “I’m going to give you five seconds to move from the gate or else I’m going to have to kick your ass.”
David’s feet remained firmly planted on the asphalt. “Damian wouldn’t like that one bit.”
“And? What are you going to do, tell on me?” Ethan taunted.
David pushed off the cell. “Yeah, if it makes you shut up.”
“I can’t stand tattletales. I have just the thing to shut you up.” Ethan pulled out his wand and aimed it at David.
“You wouldn’t…” David said.
“This is the last time I’m going to say this,” Ethan warned calmly. “Move away from the cage.”
“Oh yeah? Make me, you don’t have the guts,” David smirked at the man in front of him. “You’re nothing but a fraud.”
Soon David’s voice was replaced with the sounds of croaks. “Holy…did you just turn him into a frog man thing?” Apollo’s eyes widened.
Ethan chuckled. “I keep forgetting that you’re a human. It’s like you’re seeing everything for the first time.”
“Well, this is the first time I’ve been tied up, so I guess it is a day for firsts,” Apollo said.
Ethan made his way into the cage and began to untie Apollo. “How did you know?” Apollo asked meekly.
“You can thank Ella for that, there’s a reason we don’t want Damian to find her,” Ethan said. Grunting could be heard from Frost as she pulled herself off the ground. “How are you holding up?” Ethan turned to her quickly before untying Apollo.
“Hot…so hot…” She mumbled.
“Uh-oh, that’s not good. She’s an ice person. Her insides could literally melt if she gets to hot. We need to get her out of here and fast. What about him? Is he alright?” Ethan asked.
“I don’t know,” Apollo breathed. “I hope so.”
Frost had pulled herself over to Tommy’s body while Ethan and Apollo were talking. “What the heck are you doing?” Ethan asked. “You’re going to melt.”
“It’s all my fault…I don’t care if I melt. He saved us…this is my fault,” Frost repeated.
“Stop it!” Apollo exclaimed. He moved to grab Tommy, but Ethan pulled him back.
“Do you hear that? Footsteps. He’s coming. We need to leave now. Don’t worry, I’ve got this.” Ethan pulled out his wand once more and pointed it towards the wall. Suddenly Apolo felt himself getting lighter and the room began to sparkle.
“Ethan!” A voice cried out. “Thank goodness you made it on time. Is he safe?” She looked around. “How many did Damian attack?”
“Just the three of them I hope,” Ethan said. “Here, help me get him up on the bed. He doesn’t look so good.”
“Please tell me he’s going to be alright!” Apollo cried out.
“Ella, can you check over him?” The older woman nodded. “You need to rest, why don’t you take a seat.” He told Frost who nodded weakly.
“What’s wrong with her?” Ella asked.
“She’s feeling hot, can you get her something cold. Anything?” Ethan asked.
“Yes, of course!” Ella tended to them as Ethan turned his attention to Apollo.
“Ethan…you’re going to have to pick up some supplies. I can take care of these two, but we’re going to need some food, and Damian is on high alert!” Ella spoke. “We need to do something.”
“Apollo, you’re coming with me to get supplies, are you feeling up to it?” Ethan asked.
Apollo felt like crap, his head was spinning, his arms were heavy and his eyes burned, but he needed to help as best as he could. “Yeah, I’m good.”
The two found themselves at a nearby graveyard.
“We should be good here. Damian would never check at a junkyard. I’m here all the time but Ella hasn’t sensed him yet, so I think we’re fine. Can you tell me what happened with Damian?” Ethan asked.
“After the fight, things were pretty awkward until he came back…” Apollo began.
“Hold on, you were staying with him?” Ethan ran his hand through his hair. “Damn it. I wish I would have known earlier. I could have prevented it…instead of just getting mad at you.”
“You have someone that you want to protect, I get it.” Apollo told him. “I can’t be upset at you. You saved my life.”
“She’s…she’s important to me,” Ethan agreed. “I didn’t mean to blow up like that.”
“Blow up?” Apollo chuckled. “That was nothing. Tommy really laid into me. he even called me an asshole.”
“Tommy is that guy with the orange hair?” Ethan questioned.
“Yep and the girl is Frost Bite,” Apollo said.
“I recognized her, from the guardians. There aren’t very many ice people in the world,” Ethan began to walk ab uit further before stopping to ask another question. “Then what happened?”
“Damian had said that he was watching us the entire time. He said something about getting Frost to hand me over, and he was tired of waiting. Frost said something about him sealing a portal and then Damian tried to attack us and Tommy stood in front of us. Then I woke up and we were in that cell. I’m glad I only consciously had to stay there for a few minutes,” Apollo said.
“Damian wants things his way. I don’t know what he wants with you or what the guardians want with you, but I can tell you that Damian will stop at nothing to get what he wants. But, he’s basically powerless out of Moonlight Falls. he won’t leave the only place he has unquestioned authority. We just have to get you back home to wherever you’re from and you’ll be safe. But…if he sealed the portal, magic can’t help you. I’ve been working on a machine that will get us out of the place undetected, and you’ll be safe.”
“I’m from Sunlit Tides,” Apollo told him.
“Sunlit Tides…i’ve never heard of it, but it sounds nice,” Ethan flashed his signature smile. “Maybe you can show me around one time?”
“Sure, I owe ya one,” Apollo agreed.
“See that pile over there?” Ethan pointed to a tiny pile of junk. “I need you to go through it and see if you can find any scrap metal. Salvage what you can. I need as much as we can get to build this machine.”
Apollo wanted to groan. It was gross, digging through garbage, but the man had just saved his life. “Do you do this often?”
“Mhmm, I’ve always been on the streets. When I found Ella, she made me get a real job, but with Damian on my tail right now, I have no choice but to go back to my street ways.” Ethan was digging through a much larger pile. “If you hadn’t noticed, we aren’t staying in such a big place. We have a bathroom that works when it wants to, a magic study and a living room/bedroom with nothing to do for fun.”
“Sounds exciting,” Apollo mumbled.
“Eh..it’s not too bad. I have Ella, we talk to each other to keep our minds busy.”
Apollo paused for a minute. “Are you guys…you know…dating?”
“Heck no!” Ethan shook his head. “Are you referring to the thing I said about friendzones when you were watching me? I mean, I didn’t know that you were watching me, but I need to keep her cover safe when I’m in public. She’s at least 20 years older than me. Besides, I don’t really swing that way.”
“Neither do I. I’m sure you can tell that David isn’t my boyfriend.”
“You were trying to impress that red head?” Ethan asked.
Apollo nodded. “Yeah, but I don’t know how I feel about him anymore. I want to help him clean this mess up, but…i don’t know man, it’s complicated. I’ve never had a relationship before, let alone one with another man. i don’t know how things work.”
“I could teach you. You know, tell you all the things you need to know, in as much detail as you want.”
“What the hell!?” Apollo stuttered.
“I’m kidding,” Ethan laughed. “You’ll find out on your own when you’re ready.”
“Not to change the subject or anything, but why is Ella so important?” Apollo asked.
“I can’t tell you here. They know I’m harboring her, and they know she’s special but they don’t know the capacity of her powers and I can’t put her in danger like that.” Ethan was serious. He looked around to make sure no one was watching. “Go as fast as you can, we need to go and get some food.”
After searching through junk, the boys ended up at the bistro.
“How exactly are we going to get food?” Apollo asked.
“Easy. I’m going to go inside and you’re going to keep watch and yell if you see anything,” Ethan shrugged.
“So you mean…breaking and entering?” Apollo asked.
“No, I’m not breaking anything. There’s a loose window ack there. I just pop the glass open and climb in. It’s not like I steal everything. I just take what we need and they never know that it’s been missing.” Ethan tried to convince Apollo but he still felt a bit awkward.
“Ok, whatever, just hurry up.”
“Jeez, lighten up. Nothing is going to happen,” Ethan tried to reassure him.
“My dad went to prison,” Apollo blurted out without thinking.
“For breaking and entering?” Ethan asked softly.
“Nope,” Apollo shook his head. “For something that he didn’t do. He was trying to protect us and give us a better life. Of course, it backfired and messed us all up…” He mumbled the last part. “Anyway, what I’m trying to say is don’t get your ass caught. I kind of can’t deal with that again.”
Ethan threw his arm over Apollo’s shoulder. “Aww, does that mean you actually like me? You’re not mad?”
“Frost, you look great!” Apollo let out a sigh of relief.
“Mhmm, just needed some ice. I’m all better now…except I still don’t have any powers. I’m just like you now, but with blue skin.” She held her hands up to her face. “Humans are so boring!” She whined.
“Gee thanks,” Apollo rolled his eyes. “How is Tommy?”
“I have bad news and good news,” Ella bit her lip. “Good news, he’ll survive. The bad news is that he may not be able to walk again, and if he does, it won’t be as easy for him. The magic numbed his entire body. I could only thaw one part and I thought he might like to use his hands instead of his legs.”
“Thanks for helping him,” Apollo said quietly.
“What’s on your mind?” Ethan asked. “Being paralyzed is nothing compared to what Damian did to him. With a blow from him, your friend should be dead right now.”
“Tommy’s an athlete. I don’t think he’ll be too thrilled about not being able to play ball anymore,” Apollo spoke.
“Listen, when he jumped in front of that blow, he was expecting to die. Apollo, he was willing to die for you, and he’s here. You should both be happy.”
“I guess you’re right,” Apollo nodded. “I should be a bit more positive.” Apollo felt a lump in his throat. Tommy was willing to give up his life for Apollo and Frost. That meant that the Tommy he knew was in there all along. Apollo only wished he had found that out much sooner, then maybe Tommy would be able to walk.
“Why doesn’t everyone head to bed and get some rest?” Ella suggested.
“Yes, momma Ella,” Ethan teased.
“Frost dear, you can sleep in the sleeping bag. I’m sorry that we don’t have more,” Ella apologized.
“Oh no, you saved my life. I couldn’t do that.” Frost shook her head humbly. “Besides, I’m made of Ice, so I don’t get cold.”
“Then you should, Apollo,” Ella said.
“No way, I’ll take the floor. I’m the guest, and Frost is right. You saved my friends, and me. The floor isn’t going to hurt me for one night,” Apollo said.
“Stop worrying and get some sleep. We need to discuss a game plan in the morning so I need all of your heads in it,” Ethan said before flipping the switch off and plopping on the suede arm chair. “Night y’all!”
A chorus of “goodnights” could be heard from the three people trying to get comfortable on the wooden floor.