Nestled deep in the French countryside was a converted barn where Elijah Kane and his daughter Persephone have been hiding for nearly a year. They managed to live a quiet, rural life on the small farm outside of Brantome. Most of the locals assumed that Kane was a dirty old man and Persephone was his trophy wife; they dismissed the pair as American tourists that decided to buy into the country life until they got bored of it.
Persephone used her faerie gifts to swindle the house out of the hands of a wealthy British couple that never realized that they actually sold the farm until they received a letter in the mail from the bank wondering why they were still sending mortgage payments when they no longer owned the property. Persephone was confident that the paperwork was tidy; she was pretty happy with herself and felt that she deserved a rest.
She busied herself in the kitchen, stirring a vegetable stew on the range of a blue enameled stove. As she paced the tiled floor, she paused to admire the beauty of her home. She had gotten used to living like a hobo; having a place to call home was still novel to her.
Kane stepped into the room and Persephone wondered how she could actually be related to the man. He was old, graying, and hard. She was young, vibrant, and willowy. He was the mountains in winter, and she was the fields in spring. Persephone figured most of the difference was that she was half-faerie. Her mother had been the Autumn Princess; she fell in love with Kane, seeing something in him that Persephone didn’t care to dwell on. Her mother left Persephone with Kane without reason. While faeries were notoriously capricious, Persephone had a hard time believing that her mother would simply abandon her, but she knew that it was the truth. It hurt Persephone and it hurt Kane more than he would ever say.
“Where did you get that shirt?” asked Kane brusquely. He objected to how easily things fell into Persephone’s little hands. Persephone grabbed at the hem of the over-sized, lace trimmed chemise and thought about the shop keep she charmed. She just had to smile and anything in the store was hers.
“I made it,” she lied with a gentle smile.
“Oh,” said Kane, smelling the pot of simmering vegetables. He stalked around the kitchen like a panther and sat restlessly at the table for five minutes before he left the sit in the living room where he stared at his flint-lock pistols that hung over the mantle.
Persephone knew that her father wasn’t happy, but there was precious little she could do. She couldn’t conjure werewolves for him to fight. Even if she could, it would draw unwanted attention. She considered using her magic to send him home, but she didn’t want to. While it was a little hollow, she wanted this time with her father. There was so much she wanted to ask and say, but she had no idea of how to say any of it. Instead, they went about their days in near silence.
Evan sat in the lunch room, separate from the crowd, a pariah. He watched the cliques and gangs as they plotted their melodramas and shook his head. A new werewolf was in custody and the packs were all trying to get the measure of the new blood. Shane, an elderly mage joked with a semi-circle of Neo-Nazis, waving his bound hands excitedly. None of it mattered. Evan knew what was really going on. Simeon was in charge, and nothing happened that Simeon didn’t will.
“Hey! Fish!” yelled a voice that sounded like it was dragged a thousand miles along a desert road. Evan looked up and acknowledged Pete Black, a self-styled prison Evangelist that never actually bothered to read the Bible. He was wearing the yellow coveralls which meant he was a biter and would have to be hooded if he was to be handled by guards.
“Yeah?” responded Evan, leaning his head on his hand.
Pete sat across from Evan and furrowed his bushy brow at the Deep One.
“You still believe in those gods of yours? After seeing all of this?” asked Pete.
“Do you still believe in your one God?” asked Evan.
The pleasantries were over. Evan knew Pete wanted something, and it wasn’t a convert.
“I’ve been thinking about what you said about Simeon. I’m with you.” said Pete. “I heard you when they took you away, and I think you’re right.”
Weeks ago, Evan had been dragged to solitary. He had tried to start a fight with the red-headed guy that always got to work in the kitchen; since his talk with Simeon, none of the prisoners would acknowledge Evan. Even bashing someone’s head with a tray was enough to get noticed. The red-headed guy just kept working as the guards pulled Evan away. Evan screamed about how Simeon was controlling everyone, but no one seemed to care.
“That’s great, but what does it matter?” asked Evan.
“I know what Simeon is. I know how to beat him. That’s what you want, right? To teach him a lesson?”
Evan wanted that and more. He wanted to get control of the prison and lead an army against humanity. He wanted to bring Dagon back so he could avenge Mother Hyrda. Evan wanted to sink humanity below the waves, but he couldn’t do it alone.
“What do you want in return?” asked Evan. He glanced around, just to make sure no one was watching.
“I want his heart.’ said Pete, licking his lips.
Evan was very interested.