As Xia writhed and hissed on the ground, she was unaware of being watched. She knew that the child watched. She even saw the women arrive with their blue brow ink glowing and pulsating under their skin. She felt the small animals, the bugs, the birds and the wind. She did not, however, notice The Other.
But the child did. Their eyes locked across the distance, and the child smiled triumphantly.
After giving the command to the women to chant and ease Xia’s transformation, the child set down the burden of the sleeping Rei and vanished from sight. The Other stiffened with alarm and experienced a nasty feeling of panic when the child appeared again, chuckling, at the space that should have been a face.
“She’s mine now,” the child taunted in a sing-song voice. “She’s mine. You’ve lost; I’ve won.”
The Other growled in frustration and stomped a foot, sending shock waves through the ground. Trees and vines sprang up, fully formed, from the previously dead earth. Two of the women near Xia stumbled and fell, but never ceased their haunting song. The thick scent of jasmine and vanilla permeated the air. White and purple flowers raised their heads, seeking the warmth of the sun. The Other gasped in horror at the scene.
The child laughed at the look of pain and disgust on The Other’s face. “She’s mine now!” the child declared again, and flashed away from The Other, rejoining Xia and the tattooed females.
The Other melted away into the newly created darkness, annoyed.
The Council would not be pleased.