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Phantom Wars Chapter 15

Chapter Fifteen: Marry Cromwell

“Sabrina Cromwell, you stand accused of practicing witchcraft in broad daylight and in front of the general public, how do you plead?”

Sabrina stood in front of the court with her head held high. She knew all of the jury; they were her neighbors, her friends. She had lived in Salem all her life and was a respected member of the community, and one of its only herbalists. But none of that mattered now, when she used her magic to save that dying man in front of everyone she was executing herself, but it didn’t matter she knew what would happen and to her it was worth it to save him.

“Your honor,” Sabrina said. “I plead guilty of all chargers accused henceforth and shall accept my punishment.

“Very well,” The judge said. “In light of all the good you have done this community and all of the people you have helped we shall have mercy on you. This court shall acquisition you a hanging, to be sparred the torment of fire. At dawn you shall hang from your neck until dead; court adjourned.”

The judge banged his gable once and Sabrina was escorted to the jail by the guard. There she sat trying desperately to fight back the tears only just barley succeeding.

A couple hours after the trial Sabrina got a visitor, she recognized the young woman right away. “Marry what are you doing here!?” Sabrina demanded.

Marry waited until the guard left them alone to speak, “I bribed the guard with the last of our cake but that only bought me half a minute so listen closely. At dawn when they pull you out of here I’m going to handle the guards and you and I will make a break for it into the woods. I shall have the hounds drugged so they sleep for a coupe days but we don’t stop running for anything got it!”

“Marry please, I can’t allow you to get involved in this so just gather some herbs while my execution is undergoing so you don’t have to witness it.”

Marry grabbed Sabrina’s hand through the bars and squeezed it tightly. “I have always done my best to follow your orders because I knew you were looking out for my well being but not this time. You cannot tell me to stand around and do nothing while my only sister is hanged for saving a man’s life!

Dad made us promise to look after each other before he passed and that’s what I am doing, looking after you. First thing at dawn be prepared.” Then Marry let go of her sister’s hand and left as the guard returned.

Sabrina fell back onto the wall and slowly slunk down it on her knees sobbing quietly to herself.

When dawn came the guard put wrist shackles around Sabrina’s hands in front of her and escorted her out of the jail. Sabrina made it five steps outside of the jail when the guard cried out in pain then collapsed on the ground dead. His back was scorched and Sabrina could smell his burning flesh.

Marry quickly came out from her hiding spot behind a bail of hay and started dragging her sister with her towards the woods. They didn’t get far when they heard the sound of everyone shouting for them and heard the sounds of several fast paced heavy footsteps not too far behind them. Marry slowed down her pace then stopped altogether and turned around to face the people coming after her.

Gathering up as much power and concentration as she could, Marry conjured a wall of fire 5 feet high in front of the rushing mob. The spell caused her to break out into a sweat and she felt dizzy for a moment but she ignored it and turned back around and chased after her sister.

The two girls got deep into the woods and came out to a small open trail when a cloaked rider showed up and stopped in front of them. The rider pulled out his sword and swung it downwards at Sabrina.

*

Marry stood in front of the door with the number ‘54’ engraved in a bluish tint on it. She was a little anxious and nervous at the same time as she raised her fist and pounded on the door. She waited, and waited, and waited some more but nothing happened.

She raised her fist and pounded on the door again harder this time. Still there was no response. Marry didn’t know if they couldn’t hear her or if they just weren’t home at this time but she decided to wait for a little while longer.

Ethan and Picario bounced around the zero gravity room, ricocheting off the walls and diamond structures that floated stationary throughout the room. The football they had been tossing around was flying throughout the room with even greater speed and random trajectory then them. They spent the last hour trying to catch the damn thing only to have it frustratingly bounce off a nearby wall and go in a complete other direction away from them.

At first they were having fun trying to catch the football but when it kept managing to pelt them and rebound away; it became very annoying to them. “Can’t you use your magic to slow it down?” Ethan asked as he made another failed attempt to capture the football.

“If I could get a decent fix on it yes but the stupid thing is possessed!” Picario said.

Before Picario could say anything more the sound of pounding lightly echoed through the room into his and Ethan’s ears. Ethan who was still floating helplessly through the room asked, “Picario what is that sound?”

“Someone’s knocking on the door, I think…”

“What do you mean ‘You think’?”

“Well I put an enchantment on my door so that if anyone knocked on it I would be able to hear it but I have never had anyone knocking on my door before so I didn’t know if it was working or how it would sound.”

“Alright you should go check it out then, and as soon as I can get some sense of direction I will join you.”

Picario used his magic to straighten himself out easily and then float effortlessly to the exit. He walked at a fast pace until he got to the waterfall. There he used a spell to part the waterfall wide enough for him and possibly another person to fit through. He learned the spell recently when Ethan got tired of getting soaked every time he wanted to leave the room. He also made a stone path that goes around the side of the water so neither of them had to swim across anymore.

Near the door Nessie sat wagging her tail playfully; she knew there was someone at the door. Picario laughed a little as it reminded him of a dog happily sitting at the door wagging its tail when their owner returns. Picario rubbed Nessie’s forehead a little then opened the door.

Behind it was a woman in a cloak, her skin was fair and her face was rather pretty. Picario did not recognize her in anyway. “Can I help you?” He asked.

“I am hoping you can.” Marry said as politely as she could. I was hoping I might talk to you and Ethan Alaster about the events that conspired in the caverns of last Saturday’s Grand tournament; involving the battle with the twins.”

Picario thought back to the battle and tried to connect this strange girl at his door with it. After a long moment of silence Picario finally said, “Ah you’re that girl we helped battle the twins. Now I remember you… sort of.”

Marry frowned then said, “Yes I uh, may we talk?”

“Oh right of course where are my manors? Please come in. Ethan shall be here any minute.” Then Picario stepped aside and let Marry in.

Once Marry was inside Picario shut the door behind her. The two said nothing more to each other until Ethan arrived a minute later.

Ethan took one look at Marry and said, “Ah, we meet again witch of OZ.”

Marry frowned again and said sternly, “I am not familiar with that title whatsoever and further more my name is Marry!”

Ethan said nothing and just shrugged his shoulders.

Marry sighed then said, “Anyways I am here to talk to both of you about the events that conspired in the caverns of last Saturday’s Grand tournament; involving the battle with the twins. Rather to say, I’m here to ask what compelled either of you to help me back then. Were you hired by someone? Or is there something you wanted from me in return?”

Ethan and Picario looked at each other than back to her. And Ethan said, “We actually just happen to be at the wrong place at the wrong time when the twins ruthlessly mass murdered a bunch of other phantoms. I knew that’s what the point of the tournament was but the way they went about it and from what I was told about them, I didn’t want to miss my opportunity to take them out before they could do more harm to others or worse, torture them for fun.

We tracked them into the caves saw you two battling it out and realized you were our best chance of defeating them so we simply came to your aid assuming that both of our goals were aligned. And that’s all there is really.”

Ethan’s answer caught Marry completely off guard. That was the last thing she was expecting to hear and now she didn’t know if he was being sincere or was lying to her, but then again why would he lie? These two seemed like nothing more than two young boys that really were trying to do the right thing, maybe they haven’t been at the mansion long enough to become corrupted by it.

“I just have a couple more questions for you now Ethan, if you do not mind?”

Ethan shrugged then said, “Not really, go for it.”

“Very well, how much do you know about your family legacy?”

“What do you mean by that?” Ethan asked, his tone turning hostile.

“I mean are you involved with your family affairs here at the mansion at all?”

Ethan glared at Marry and clenched his fist unknowingly. The air suddenly became more hostile and Nessie was able to pick up on it because she quickly flew over to Ethan’s side and started growling at Marry.

Marry ignored the dragon and waited patiently for Ethan’s response. It was a long strained moment of high tension before Ethan spoke again, “What exactly are you asking me?”

“Please don’t take this the wrong way but its little known fact that your family is infamous at the mansion here. I doubt that there is even a phantom that’s been here no more than five years that doesn’t know about the Alaster family in some way or another. I simply wanted to know if you were like the others or like your fath-”

“Like my father when it comes to being a damn psychopath?” Ethan interrupted Marry.

“I wasn’t going to put it so blunt but, precisely yes.”

“Well I’m not like that bastard in anyway so you don’t have to worry about that for whatever reason. So now that we answered your questions good bye.” Ethan then turned around and started walking away. He called back “And you’re welcome for saving you from the twins.”

Marry was going to chase after him but the dragon stood in her way, even the young boy Picario was moving on. Marry cursed to her silently, she still had so many more questions needed answering.

“Let me ask you one last question before I leave then.” Marry shouted. “Do either of you know about the contract that binds your soul here to the mansion?”

Ethan and Picario stopped after hearing that. They looked at each other then reluctantly turned back around and walked back to Marry.

“Alright you have our attention once more but this better not be some sort of trick.” Ethan said.

“Unfortunately it is not.” Marry said. “When you willingly enter any of the tournaments or battle games here, you unknowingly sign a contract that binds your soul here until you earn your freedom.”

This story is protected by International Copyright Law, by the author, all rights reserved. If found posted anywhere other than storiesspace.com with this note attached, it has been posted without my permission.

Copyright © © Jake Pendragon all rights reserved 2015

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