For the first time, Nick wasn't worried about having Fable on his heels as he sprinted down the street. In fact, it was downright comforting to have him along. As he neared the battle, he watched in horror and a dark man, presumably Braedon, dashed up to Ellesun at impossible speed and thrust his hand out at her, his palm inches from her face. He delivered a bolt of bright white light to her face, and she fell from the sky.
She hit the ground hard and Nick dashed up to her and dropped by her side. She looked up at him, slightly dazed.
"Nick? You shouldn't be here you'll get hurt." She climbed to her feet.
"Me? Are you okay?"
Ellesun regained her composure quickly. "I'm fine, now take cover," she ordered.
"Well, well, well, Nick. It's so good to see you," Braedon said as he approached.
Fable stepped between Braedon and Nick.
"Get out of my way!" Braedon snarled.
"No," Fable responded in his usual calm manner.
"I can't beat him Nick," Ellesun whispered. She wobbled and Nick put his arm around her to keep her steady.
"I said get out of the way!"
"Even now he's growing more powerful, and I can barely stand," Ellesun continued.
"What about Fable?" Nick asked.
"He will die here," she responded simply.
Braedon put his fist through Fable's chest, and slowly, Fable began to deteriorate.
Nick's jaw dropped. There was his "invincible" foe. Killed in two seconds flat by Braedon.
"It's over," Ellesun said, her voice barely audible.
"I told you I'd destroy every part of you, Ellesun," Braedon spat. "The first to go will be the only person you care about. The only person you know." Braedon snatched Nick up by his throat and held him there. "Precious Nicholas, now you must die."
Ellesun touched Nick's hand, and he was gone.
Braedon blinked. He looked up. A new portal was opening in the sky. "You didn't just--"
"Yes I did," Ellesun replied. She grabbed Braedon and tossed him in the air above her with what little strength she had left. She focused all of her power, every last ounce into one more, powerful beam of energy. She hit Braedon with it, knocking him into the white gash in the sky. Back into Limbo. It closed behind him.
Ellesun fell to her stomach, unable to move. Moments later, she felt someone touch her. Gently. Slowly, she was rolled onto her back. She gazed up at Nick.
"What happened? Where's Braedon?" Nick asked.
"He's in Limbo."
"I sent you into the future."
"And it made a new portal?"
Nick scooped her up in his arms and began to walk down the road.
"Where are we going?" Ellesun asked.
"Does it matter?"
"No," she replied, burying her head in his chest.
Six months later:
Nick held Elle's hand as they sat in his apartment together, enjoying a lazy breakfast. He had really lucked out the last few months. By rights he should've been in jail and Ellesun (who had opted for the name Elle at Nick's suggestion) should have been the center of tabloid media storm. But they weren't. Without a cadaver, Nick wasn't a murderer, and thankfully, no one got a good look at Elle. She'd lost her powers anyway, she'd spent them all knocking Braedon into the next universe.
So as far as anyone knew, Nick was normal guy, in love with Elle, who was a normal girl. Nick finished his meal and went to the kitchen to rinse out his plate. Ellesun followed him in and did the same.
She smiled at him. "See you tonight." She threw her arms around him and kissed him gently.
"Uh huh," Nick replied. "Love you."
"Love you too," Elle replied, kissing him again.
Nick always hated leaving home. He sighed and headed for the door. He opened it, greeted with the barrel of a gun. Mac stood in the doorway, and his eyes were dark and bleak.
"Mac," Nick started, but he could think of nothing else to say.
Elle walked over. "What did you say hon--" She froze, not quite sure what to do.
"Elle, get out of here. Go to the kitchen." But Nick knew she wouldn't listen.
"I'm sorry Nick. I have no choice," Mac said, but his eyes betrayed him.
"It was you all along. What did He promise you? Riches? Fame? Power?"
Mac grinned. "Braedon will give me all three."
Nick was pissed. And his anger gave him bravado. He grabbed the gun and pointed it away from himself. It went off twice before Nick wrestled it from Mac.
Nick turned and saw his beautiful lover laying on the floor in a pull of blood. He slowly turned back to Mac who stared with horrified eyes at Elle. Nick screamed. He clubbed Mac across the face with the pistol and proceeded to jump on top of him. He wrapped his hands around Mac's throat and there, in the doorframe of his apartment, he strangled Mac to death.
He stood slowly, unsure of what to do now. He could feel his tears streaming. The anguish in his heart became a physical pain. Nick dropped to his knees and vomited on the carpet.
Nick recognized that voice.
"I need your help."
Nick turned and saw Fable standing at the door. "You're alive?"
Fable nodded. "Braedon is still alive. And Limbo is not going to hold him. Not now that Ellesun is dead."
Nick was shaking. "I don't understand."
"You will." Fable extended his hand toward Nick.
To be continued . . .