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Until The End

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When the earth was new there were several gods who walked the earth and they gave gifts to the children of the earth. Each of the gods was one of the zodiacs, and each zodiac had six chosen children, which they bestowed a gift upon. These children would rule over the four dominions, Earth, Water, Air, and Fire. Each dominion had three zodiacs and only the strongest of the zodiac would be the ruler.

Over the years whoever was ruling would change between the three zodiacs. Slipping from one to another, never staying the same for long. The most prominent are usually Scorpio, Capricorn, Gemini, and Leo. But every now and then one of the others would take over the domain. When this would happen there would be an uproar, a child of the other Zodiac would be born more powerful; almost seen as having ultimate power. From there the others would seek out that child so that they could kill it, destroying the one chance for another Zodiac to take over the domain.

In the beginning, each of the children was born in their zodiacs star alignment but that didn’t last for long. To keep the powers of the children alive they would pass their powers along to another once they die. The moment that the child takes their last breath it moves to a child taking their first breath. The power transfer as such no matter where in the world this new child is. And so, as time went on children from any of the zodiacs are born in all the star’s alignments.

Each of the zodiac’s children is born with unique powers and build up a group of six called a circle. There is one child who can shift their being. To become anything in the world that they need to be. To take the shape and voice of any living creature. They can take any human shape and any shape of an animal within their domain. For example, Air can become any bird, but water can become any creature of water, but not a creature of the air. Fire can become any creature that lives in fire or comes from the ashes of fire like a phoenix but can’t become a mermaid as it is a water creature, and so on and so forth.

The next child is gifted with the ability to become a ghost, to make it so that they can disappear when needed. Not only that they are able to also make other things disappear as well. With each element gives them an advantage a way to make themselves like a chameleon in their own element: to be able to take on the look and texture of their element in the world around them. They are also able to make it so that others and things can pass through them and the items that they pose. Giving them the abilities to look like a ghost.

The third child can track, to find a scent of anything and everything. To see the tracks that no one else can see. Children born of the Air zodiacs are the strongest when endowed with this, as their abilities allow them to track anyone in the wind. The others must use their elements, making it a little harder. Water Element has an easier time when it rains and the earth element able to track as far as there is dirt for them to feel. Fire is the weakest of the four, having so little to track with.

The fourth child has gifted the ability to use the element that they are born to. Take in the magical essence around them and from it into an element. Their only weakness is each other. Fire is vulnerable towards Water but can overpower Air. Air can overpower Earth which in turn can overpower Water. And so, in a circle, it goes.

The fifth child is like the fourth, hey can use their element, but, unlike the fourth, they have to be close to the source. This however does not indicate weakness. These children are nimble-fingered and able to think on their feet. They move with grace like a ninja and an assassin mixed together, usually lean and thin, making them harder to catch. They can use their gift better around the fourth child, and in most cases they pair together in battle because of this.

The last of the children is the most important and deemed the circles’ most powerful member. This child can merge with the world around them. They see things differently; their brain power is far more potent than any that have come before them and every child before them memories are stored within them. They remember every past life that has ever had their gift. Every death, every love, every heartbreak. These children sometimes can’t cope with all the memories in their heads and begin to go crazy. Some even take their own lives to make the pain stop. Their bodies flow with life and creation. Being able to pick up something and see it’s makeup and how it works or was created in a matter of seconds. Because of this, their lives are often shorter, and they need something or someone to ground them or face the consequences of insanity.

 Each of the six children is bound to each other through life and through death; nothing seems to be able to separate them and they will be drawn to the others no matter the distance. Each child is born into a broken family, someone that can be left behind, someone that won’t be needed. This is since their circle is their family and they long and yearn to find them no matter what. When a powerful child is born, one with more power than a circle has ever seen in centuries the sky explodes with colors of vivid proportion. This is to signify the dawn of a new age when a new circle will take control over their domain.

This doesn’t always happen though if the other two circles find the new child before they can come into their power that’s circle’s domain will be put out before it can even begin to light. This doesn’t happen very often, but every now and then it does, and it is a heartbreaking day for all. When a child of such a young age is taken and a new life is born again.

The children of the Zodiacs look like everyone else except for one exception, a birthmark or stars and a moon printed on their skin. The mark of their constellation imprinted on them since the day that they are born, that glows silver in the moonlight. Some are easy to hide while others have a hard time hiding them. They can be printed anywhere from the inside of a wrist to the peck of one’s chest. Or even on one’s foot or leg. It doesn’t matter if they have the mark they are one of the zodiacs children.

These children are family, they are the ruler and protectors of those that need them, and when the lights of the sky shine brightly the race is on. For it has been several thousand centuries since Cancer has had a power born to them. The last time that it happened the child was snuffed out before he could come into his power. From that day forth, all began their search for the young Alec Hardison. A boy born into a fatherless life and a mother dead as he breathes. A tragic start to a life sets to be full of wonder and magic.


 

Alec had always had a special bond with computers, it felt like he was able to meld with them kinda like how Spock mind-melded with people on Star Trek. It was an amazing and inaugurating process, being able to feel the computer in his blood. And yet he knew that something, some part of his was missing. He had this feeling in his gut that there was more to life than school and his computers, but Alec couldn’t, no wouldn’t go out looking for that adventure. Something, some part of him told him that he had to stay put that it was safer where he was.

He had a strong instinct that allowed him to hide or run from danger no matter what it might be. And that in of itself had kept him alive for longer than he wanted to admit. Alec didn’t like admitting that his life seemed to attract danger and so to avoid it he didn’t do things that would bring that to him.

A car almost hitting him, something almost falling on him. If Alec didn’t know better, he would have to say that the universe was out to get him. That he was Hexed, and in a way, you could say Alec was, he just didn’t know if quite yet. He needed his circle, and they needed him. Alec had moved around a lot, from one place to another. He didn’t quite fit in, so he moved to another place.

From one foster family to another, it wasn’t that big of a deal. Starting all over, repeatedly. Part of him told him that he needed to do this. That this was protecting him, if he isn’t in one place for too long then no one can find him. When he was able to start faking things like birth certificates and records Alec started changing his name leaving behind who he uses to be and where he was from. All to try and disappear into the night. Into the dark, so that he would be safe. Alec didn’t know why he did this, he just did.

Dreams of people would come to him at night, others that would move around from place to place. Leaving little to no trail in their wake. A young woman with long black hair and a soft smile a mark just like his in the same place brushing her fingers through a child’s hair. Her leaving in the middle of the night tears in her eyes as she leaves. He awakes screaming one night when he feels her die. She is stabbed through the heart. An evil looking man does the stabbing. He doesn’t care for her and he laughs as he does it. Alec remembers her words, ‘One day I will be the one to kill you.’

Alec doesn’t like those words, but he knows deep down in his soul that this is the person that he is running from. This is the person that he must hide from or he will kill him again like he has done so many times before. Alec doesn’t know why he knows this, but he does, and it scares him more than he would like to admit. Thankfully there isn’t anyone there for him to admit it too. That night Alec packs his bags and leaves again, he is only sixteen. Too young to be leaving home but that doesn’t stop him. The first time Alec left he was four, the sense of urgency thumping through his blood as the young boy pitter-pattered away from a home that he had lived in for, so long. The danger was far too close.

That sense of danger had returned, and Alec knew that he needed to leave. Grabbing only a bit of clothing, the cash he had stolen and his laptop he took off into the night. He wouldn’t be the next victim, he would do as the woman said he would kill this man. He had to if only to protect himself and all others. From that day on Alec began to train, to get stronger. He would go to gyms and learn how to fight. He wasn’t all that good at it but tried. He tried his best and in doing so he began to come into his powers. They had awoken long ago as a child, but they began to develop as he interacted with more and more things. He began to grow and become the powerful ruler of the Water domain, he yet didn’t know it.

Nothing would stop him and his circle, as they all began to feel the rise in their powers as Alec became stronger and stronger. Each began to feel drawn to him more and more as the years passed. Alliances were born and soon they would find each other, and the battle for the crown would begin.


 

Eliot has always been strong, the bigger kid on the playground. The child that no one wants to mess with, built to take a beating and yet get back up again and fight some more. He is a protector, always trying to protect those that can’t protect themselves. His mother left his father and him when he was very young, so young that he doesn’t even remember what she looks like. Eliot wishes that he could remember her, that he knows what her smile looked like. But his father had removed all the pictures of her one night and set them a light.

Eliot sometimes dreams of a better life, a family, someplace to belong. Deep down he knows that he doesn’t belong where he is, but he can’t seem to just get up and leave. Something keeps him drawn to the place where he was born. Eliot hates it, he knows that there is someone out there that will love him and never abandon him, he just doesn’t know who.

Because Eliot has always been so strong, be able to take a beating he learns to fight, to kill. He learns to destroy anyone that gets in his way. There are nothing and no one that can stop him. On this path of death and carnage Eliot meets Damien Monroe, the man is evil. So Evil and Eliot know it, but he can’t stop himself from following the man. This man makes him feel loved and as he belongs.

The first time that they have sex Damien takes him from behind with little to no prep. It burns, and the slide is dry. His own blood makes the glide smoother, Damien tells him that is how sex is. How sex is supposed to be. It isn’t until years later after he has fallen away from Damien that he finds out that, what he had been told was wrong. That wasn’t how sex was, that wasn’t how sex is supposed to feel.

Some people tell him that he was Raped, Eliot questions it. Was that really what happened if he agreed to it. He allowed it to happen, so did Damien really rape him? He doesn’t know. What he does know is that one night while he was with Damien after he had turned eighteen he feels something. A surge in power and a sense of hope. But he also feels someone else calling out to him, someone in need. Someone in danger. Someone that needed his protection. So, Eliot leaves, he leaves in the middle of the night with no note. Nothing. He just packs up and walks away, his soul longing to be connected to the one that is calling out to him. Longing to protect the weak that can’t protect themselves.

He pushes himself hard, finds other along the way but doesn’t seem to be able to find the one that he was looking for. Eliot learns many things about himself as well along the journey. Things that he could have never learned from Damien, if only because the man was keeping him in the dark. Learns that Damien wanted him under his control. If only to hold a member of another’s circle in his palm. TO make Eliot chose between several strangers and a man that gave him purpose. Eliot is glad that he leaves, knowing now that Damien would have made him kill the ones that he is supposed to love, to kill his family.


 

Sophie came from a big family, lots of sister and brother. So, what if there is another one to add to the mix. It isn’t that big of a deal. It is for Sophie, she didn’t have any time for herself. She was always trying to be someone else. To make her mother proud, or to even notice her. After all, how does one notice the last child of twelve? You don’t, after all, they are just one of the twelve.

That didn’t mean she wasn’t taken care of, no she was given everything that she would have ever needed. Spoiled beyond belief, a life of luxury and money. Sophie had so much money that some days she didn’t know what to do with it. But still it wasn’t enough, she wanted to be loved to be noticed. She wanted someone to see her for who she is. Was that too much to ask for? Apparently, it was, too much work to notice and love her. One day Sophie vowed they would all know her name. She wouldn’t be wrong of course it would just take more time than she realized.

Sophie met Tara when she was fifteen, and they became the best of friends. Both coming from a huge family and trying to be seen. Each so much like the other it was crazy. Tara was a lovely girl with dirty blond hair that loved to get dirty, while Sophie still believed in having class. They were each other’s opposites and yet they seemed to complete each other so well.

Years later Tara would move away and leave Sophie alone, but for the longest of time, Sophie thought she had found her family. Tara wasn’t her family, no there were others out there that were her family and they were waiting for her.

Sophie was twenty-one when she felt the pull of a power that had her leaving for America, a place that she had only read about but had never visited. It was time, time for her to start a new life. To find the family that she knew she had. A family that would love her without fail no matter what would happen, that wasn’t too big to notice her at all.

Sophie came into her powers at a young age, and she used those abilities to help her get into America. It turns out being able to change the look of one’s face can be very useful, especially for stealing things. The ability to take on the look of whomever she needed or wanted to be helped her get into a lot of places. It also helped her with her ability to sweet talk and manipulate others something that she hadn’t been the best at as a child. Before long Sophie became a world-renowned grifter, and yet deep down she was still looking for that place where she belonged. A place where her family waited for her and she didn’t have to lie to belong.


 

Nate had to have the happiest family so far, a mother and father that loved him. Nothing could go wrong… or well that is what he would always tell him. Nothing would separate him from the people that loved him the most. Nothing ever goes the way that it is planned When Nate is fourteen his mother and father get into a car crash and leave the world presently. Nate curses every god known to mankind. How could someone with so much love and compassion be taken from this world?

He closes off and starts drinking, why should be taken care of himself when there isn’t anything or anyone other there for him now. He was, is alone with nobody to love and care for him. Nate spent almost ten years like that, thinking that he wasn’t worth anything. That there were nothing and nobody out there for him. He was wrong, and people would come into his life to prove him as such.

In those ten years, he met Maggie and James, two people that became his closest friends. He loved them dearly, wanted to be with them so much, but at last couldn’t be. Maggie and James were meant to be. Not only were they part of the same circle, but they had also come into their powers at a young age and could use them so well. Maggie being able to control her element when it is around her, she is also quick on her feet and James a tracker of extraordinaire. They were the perfect couple and Nate envied them so much.

That never got in the way of their friendship though, James and Maggie loved him no matter what and even pushed Nate to be a better person, to find his own circle and when Nate felt a strong surge of power push through him he knew that it was time. That there wasn’t any more time to waste. It was now or never, it was time to do his job.


 

Parker had been left on the door of an orphanage, she didn’t know what love was and she didn’t know how to cope with anything. She started stealing just to get by and one day she met a man named Archie. This man became her father in a sense, he raised her, but he raised her to be a weapon and nothing more. She wasn’t given the love that she needed and so she grew devoid of it all. She had no feeling, she was just a robot that did as she was told.

Archie was like her and he believed that he was making it so that no one could ever hurt her, but the truth was far from that and he knew it. Like Damien with Eliot he believed that if he raised a child from another circle as his own he would be able to control them and for a while, it worked, it worked up until Parker met a young girl named Peggy. She would smile at Parker and no matter how much Parker tried not to feel Peggy wouldn’t allow it. She gave Parker something that she never knew that she needed.

A friend, and before she even knew it a piece of her missing family. A part to her soul, Peggy was one of her family, someone she would die for before betraying. This angered Archie so much that he forbids Parker from ever seeing Peggy, but Parker could stop herself. She was drawn to the life like a moth to a flame. She couldn’t keep herself away, and so one-night Peggy and Parker left. They packed their bags and left town.

They hopped around from place to place, Archie always on their tail, but it did little to dissuade them. They had found each other before the need became too great and now they were never going to let go. Peggy would hold on no matter what. When they were both seventeen they felt the surge in power and their marks burned in pain and Parker and Peggy knew that it was time, time for them to find the last pieces to the puzzle. It was time to rule the world, take their place at the head of their domain. But first they would have to find their family, and then no one, not even Archie would be able to stop them.


 

It took James, Maggie, and Nate four years after the jump in power to find the first of Nate’s circle. As it would be they found her by accident. They were sitting in a dinner getting lunch when two young women came in looking like they had just stepped out of a fashion magazine.

“Sophie why are we even here?”

The girl named Sophie turned to her friend, “Good burgers? Besides you are the one that wanted to come in here Tara.”

Tara laughed, “Yeah but why this one? I wanted a burger yes but, what were you drawn here?”

Sophie nodded her head before turning to her friend, “Tara, we have been looking for my circle for four years… I just I don’t know felt like we needed to come into this place… Ya know.”

Tara nodded her head in agreement, “Yeah I know… We haven’t heard one lip from mine either… but I felt it too… the need to come here. Maybe we will both find what we are looking for.”

Maggie had been the first to get up, on Tara’s left shoulder blade was a star and moon design that matched her own. She had noticed it immediately, and though she was worried she knew that this girl had to be part of her circle. She made her way over carefully. 

Tara paid her no attention as she answered her phone smiling at it while talking, “Yes Molly we are getting burgers. Girl calms down, we’ll get you two.”

Tara hung up her phone and turned to Sophie, “Why do teenage girls eat so much?”

Sophie laughed, “She is only fifteen Tara, it can’t be helped. What did she want to eat?”

“Two burgers and a shake. Chocolate. The girl is going to be the death of me.”

Sophie smiled with a soft smile, “She is the only member of your circle that we have found. Who else is going to take care of her.”

Maggie takes that opening to insert herself into the conversation, she smiles and makes a soft noise causing Sophie and Tara to look over at her, “Sorry to butt in. I just couldn’t help but overhear you talking about circles? Ah and your mark it matches mine. My name is Maggie I am here with my partner James, and our friend Nate,” she gestures to the two-guy sitting at a table in the back.

James waves at them and Nate rolls his eyes but does a slight wave with his fingers. Tara and Sophie both nod their heads and then look back at Maggie. Maggie smiled and shifts her shirt to the left revealing a group of stars in the shape of a diamond with a moon in the center of it. She is right it matches the one on Tara’s shoulder.

“Libra,” she says softly and Tara blinks. To anyone else, she looks like she is annoyed but Sophie can tell that she is very, very happy. This is the first kind of lead that they have come across in a while.

“Would you like to join up,” Asks Maggie.

Tara frowns, “We can’t we have to get back to our room, Molly is waiting for us… but maybe you could come with us?”

Maggie nodded her head, “Yeah let me get the guys. James is going to be so happy.”

As Maggie walks back over to the table Sophie lets out a small wine, “Oh come on, why do you get to be the lucky one. Finding yourself another member, maybe two or three… This is sucky.”

Tara rolled her eyes, “Yeah well you said you had a feeling too. Maybe we will find a member of your circle too.”

It didn’t take long for them to get their food, and the whole group set off to the room. Maggie, James, and Nate took their car while Tara and Sophie tool Tara’s car. When they arrived at the room the first thing to happen was Molly, a tall skinny girl with long brown hair jump Tara. She is smiling and holding on with a grip that could kill.

“DID you bring me my food. Tara, I am starving.”

Sophie laughed, “Yes Molly we brought you food and a few friends.”

Molly jumped down and beamed at the others taking them in, “Who are they?”

Tara sighed softly, “This is Maggie, she is part of our circle. The other two are James and Nate. James is Maggie’s partner.”

Molly gave them a quizzically look before turning to Sophie, “You find anyone from your Circle Safe?”

Sophie tilted her head at the alertness that Nate gave off at the mention of Sophie’s Circle, “No love. Not a single clue. Though I did feel something during the dinner, nothing came up. No religious sighting or anything like that. Nothing like you and Tara’s meeting love.”

Molly makes a soft noise and makes grabby hands for the food. Tara hands it to her and she moves off. Tara sighs then invite them all to sit down and come in.

“Sorry, she can be a little much. She’s been with me since she was nine. I found her on the side of the road. I and Sophie are the only family she knows. She is really caring.”

Maggie doesn’t seem to mind she just smiles, “It’s okay. James, Nate and I have been together for years as well. The only family we have. James is part of my circle too. Nate has his own Circle, he is Cancer? What are you, Sophie?”

Sophie’s head turns sharply towards Nate and her eyes narrow dangerously, “I am a Cancer as well. Prove it?”

Nate is quick to hold up his hands in surrender. The whole room suddenly became quiet and cold. Nate Slowly unbuttons his shirt and slips it off turning around. His mark is much like Tara’s on the back of his shoulder. Four stars in a ‘Y’ with a moon in the center of the ‘v’. Tara breaks the silence.

“You can put your shirt back on… Sorry about that… it’s just we ran into someone else looking for Cancer. They tried to take Sophie’s head off. We are a little wary of anyone.”

Maggie nods her head, “I understand that. What… what are your powers.”

Sophie does a little elegant spin as her features change, “We are both shifters. And the three of you?”

Maggie smiles and twists the air around them making it warmer and dryer at the same time, “I can shift the air around me. Not very far or in a big amount but enough.”

James huffs, “Tracker, one of the best. Can find just about anything, I’d say I’m better than Nate.”

Nate rolls his eyes, “We can also out think just about anyone. Have huge brains…”

Sophie hums, “Well Now all you all need are two more and we need four more.”

Tara nods her head, “Molly can turn invisible, I suppose that is what saved her all that time ago. Saved her from the evil men.”

It is quiet after that, a bit of mummering about each other, trying to get to know their new family. They learn that Sophie and Nate are being hunted, if they are part of the circle belonging to Cancer there is a man out there looking for them. He is willing to kill anyone that gets in his way.

Tara and Sophie haven’t run into him yet, but they have run into a couple of his circle, a woman named Anne and a man named Victor. Both looking to capture Cancer circle member and bring them back to their boss. Sophie had tried to escape and that was what had almost gotten her killed. They knew to be wary of these people.

Tara explained that they were Scorpio, the head of the Water Circles and that their leader was a legend.

“It’s said that he has lived for thousands of years.”

James scoffed, “That isn’t possible.”

Tara shook her head. Even if it wasn’t possible he was the reason that Cancer Circle member was being hunted and they had to be wary of anyone that said they were looking for them. After all, you never know who might be on this guys side.

They weren’t wrong though, how many more times would there be another close call? How many more times would they just barely make it out in time? They didn’t know and so they had to be careful.

It was good to have found more like them and Tara and Sophie felt a little safer knowing that they wouldn’t be alone anymore. Still, there was a long way to go before they would have everyone and be two complete circles if that was even possible. The threat of demise was still hanging over their heads and now at the back of everyone’s minds.


 

Parker and Peggy traveled light and alone, they didn’t need anyone else slowing them down. Since leaving home they had gotten better at being thieves. After all, you must steal what you need, how on earth were they to survive if they didn’t.

Along the way they ran into many different people, the most memorable one of them all was a man named Reed Rockwell, he was interesting, and scary. Able to become one with the technology around him allowed him to get into just about anything. He had this way of seeming so kind, and yet there was something dark about him that made Peggy nervous when he was around.

They had a couple of run-ins with him before they were able to lose him. He would talk of devouring souls, not that he could do it, but his master would teach him how if he found the one. Whatever or whoever that was. Said that all he had to do was bring them to him. Parker wasn’t going to let that happen. Nothing about getting their soul devoured sounded fun or worth their time.

That didn’t mean losing the man was easy, far from it in fact, as he seemed to always be able to find them for a while. It took ditching their phones and any kind of electronics of a kind just to get away from him. This is when they meet a young girl named Amy, she is soft and kind, wants to be an artist and had been separated from her circle.

She is scared and alone and Parker doesn’t want to help her, but Peggy can’t leave her behind. This causes an argument, with Peggy winning with the lasting comment, ‘Would you leave me behind?’

The answer is obviously no, Parker would never, ever leave Peggy behind. How could she, Peggy is her other half, her better half. Peggy just smiles and says, her family left her behind, we can’t allow that to happen. We must help her.

Parker seemed to understand that, and so Amy joins their little crew of miss fit runaway thieves. They take care of her and promise to find her a place to belong. Amy continues to draw and now they have something that isn’t wrong to bring them some money, not much but still some. Amy’s art is amazing after all, Parker tells her so herself and the money they bring in from it is proof enough.

As they travel Parker and Peggy always keep an eye over their backs; one can never be too worried. They don’t want to run into Rockwell ever again. And for a while, they stay in the clear. They don’t have any more runs with anyone bad. Of course, everything can’t stay that way forever.


 

When Eliot runs away from Monroe, he lives on his own for a while. Moving around from place to place trying to stay one step ahead of the man. He is also drawn to another force in the universe; someone that Eliot knows is his one, his other half. Yet every time he gets to this place they are long gone, and Eliot begins to think that this person doesn’t want him to find them. That they want to be alone. That they don’t want him, and that hurts.

Three years after the bout of power that fills him he finds Quinn and with Quinn comes Colin. They are a strange group. Quinn is a badass much like Eliot, in fact, he is kinda like Eliot’s Yang, though not completely because Eliot knows that Damien is his Yang to his Yin and that is a scary thought.

Quinn is like him but from a different circle and Colin is from the same circle that Quinn is from, he is his better half. They work well together, but they are always arguing and Eliot wonders how on earth they could get together, how they can stand each other. Colin says it’s because the sex is so good. Eliot isn’t sure if he believes him.

Along the way, Eliot becomes stronger and stronger his power blooms without Damien’s control over him, but he also seems to become more closed off. He doesn’t think that he will ever find his mate, the one that he is meant for. Little does he know he keeps missing the boy, walking past. Brushing shoulders as one or the other hurries along to another place. But it wouldn’t be for not. Soon everything would come into perspective.


 

Eliot and Quinn met Nate at a dive bar. There had been a fight and he had gone out to get drunk. He wanted to wash away his worries his fears, but it wasn’t working everything was leading him to think about Sophie, how amazing she was and how much she didn’t seem to feel the same about him as he did her. That hurt, and he was a little heartbroken over the fact. Sophie was in love with Tara and it wasn’t all that hard to see that Tara felt the same way, they were like a little family. They even had a child, Molly. Not that she was their child Nate reminded himself.

Eliot and Quinn had watched the man in some odd fascination as he got drunker and drunker. By the end of the night he was so drunk that he couldn’t even stand and Eliot, poor Eliot felt the need to help the guy out. It was one of the most important decisions that he made in his life. It led him to his family, well most of his family.

Nate stumbled along telling Eliot all about Sophie and how she was so amazing, and he wants her so much, but he can’t have her. She has already found her fated one, and he wasn’t it. Eliot listened halfheartedly, knowing that his mate his one wasn’t around either and that they would always disappear before he could find them. All he wanted to do was hold them and tell them how much he loves them, even though he doesn’t know them at all. Yet he knows, he knows that he loves them.

When they finally make it to the hotel room a young woman with brown hair opens the door and Eliot stares at her blankly. She is wearing a nice silk top that is slightly see-through. Eliot can almost make out a mark that looks just like his.

“I… ah, your friends here, is really drunk and I thought I would help him home.”

Sophie huffs in annoyance, “Of course he is, why would he be anything but drunk.”

She sounds so very angry and Eliot winces and Nate turns his head away in pain. He thinks he sees the start of tears well up in his eyes but doesn’t say anything. Nate huffs and pushes his way into the room. “Thank you, Eliot. This here is Sophie.”

Eliot nods his head, he understands now. Sophie seems like a strict person and Nate just wants the attention, the good kind he is sure. Sophie huffs, “I pray he wasn’t too much trouble.”

Eliot frowns, “No he wasn’t, are you part of a circle?”

Sophie’s eyes darken in suspicion, “A what?”

Eliot isn’t stupid he knows that she knows what he is talking about. Quinn joins him at his side looking at Eliot and Sophie, “She looks like one. I can see her mark.”

Sophie is quick to draw back and try to shut the door in their faces. Eliot allows her to do so. He knows that they won’t be able to leave until morning due to Nate, so he will wait. He just must make sure that they are part of his family.

They wait all night, Quinn leaves to get Colin, Eliot stays put. In the morning when the group is trying to sneak out Eliot ambushes them. He is waiting, he watches the fear and terror go through all of them. Eliot doesn’t say anything.

Quinn is the first to speak up, “We just want to talk, nothing more. Hell, you never know we could be part of your circle.”

Sophie hisses, “I doubt that.”

Tara shifts and holds Molly closer to her. Nate just frowns, “What do you want to talk about?”

Colin tired of everything huffs, “Eliot is a Cancer and Quinn and I are Libra’s. There done, what are all of you?”

Sophie is still on guard, Eliot notices that she is looking around, trying to see if she can find a way out. Tara doesn’t seem to be at ease either. Nate keeps his face neutral and so do the others. Eliot sighs and begins to walk away.

“They aren’t part of our circle's guys… let’s just go.”

Eliot turns and begins to walk away Quinn and Colin sigh and follow behind them. Once they are out of sight Nate frowns. Sophie looks happy, she and Tara are moving away heading to their care. Maggie and James frown slightly.

“They are part of our circle,” James said softly but sharply.

Sophie turns and growls, “No they aren’t. They saw my mark and just made it up. They aren’t part of the family and they never will be.”

Nate turns on her, “What if they are. Sophie what if they are?”

“They aren’t,” Sophie pretty much screams.

The air becomes frigid and Nate turns away, “You…” he whispers, “Why can’t you see that not everyone is going to hurt you. They didn’t try. Fuck they even walked me home.”

Sophie glared at him and turns and walks away, “I think you should leave,” she says.

Nate doesn’t even give her a backward glance before walking away. He doesn’t care if the others follow him. Why should he, he is pretty sure that they just turned away someone that is their family because Sophie doesn’t want to get hurt. Because someone has tried to hurt them before. She’ll be forever alone at this point he thinks.

Maggie and James don’t follow him, and he doesn’t care, why should he. After all, he isn’t the one abandoning his family. Nate uses his abilities to track Eliot and his friends, he doesn’t interact with them until much later. He keeps an eye on them. Knowing that if they are his family then he might need to protect them. Little does he know that they aren’t the ones needing protecting. As there are always eyes watching, waiting for a weak link.


 

Alec doesn’t spend a lot of time on the outside, he knows how to shoot a gun to some extent, but he doesn’t like to do it. He keeps himself safe the only way that he knows how but staying away from anything that could be considered dangerous. So that pretty much includes the whole world, if they can’t get to him then he will be safe. But even Alec knows that this is always going to be true, he needs to find someone, someone to take care of him. There must be someone out there that will be able to take care of him, to make sure that he stays safe. That person doesn’t come through.

He knows that he should know how to take care of himself, the dreams still haunt him. The man that kills him repeatedly taking his soul and feeding on it. Well, His dreams don’t show him that, but he doesn’t need them to. Alec learns, reads books about the Zodiacs and their powers and what they could do, what they are capable of. None of them can take a soul, but there are ways. Things that can be done that will allow someone to take a soul of another and feast off it. He wonders if that is why he can’t remember some of his lives, that only a few of them are fresh in his mind and those are the ones that are so old that he is sure they are one of the first lives that he ever lived.

Alec tried to find out more about his lives, find out what kind of lives they lived. The people that they knew, anything to get him a leg up. There wasn’t anything. Only a few of them had deaths that had been recorded, and very few of them lived in America. In fact, from what he could tell most of them didn’t even know that America was a thing, it made finding out about his life so much harder. What he did learn though was the name of the man or beast that wanted him dead, Damien Monroe. A man with so much power it didn’t even make sense, that was unless you factored in the fact that he has been alive since before the birth of Christ.             

Somehow, he had found a way to extend his natural life. To make it so that he wouldn’t die of natural causes. That and his ability to kill almost anything that came after him also helped, Alec had to take a deep breath and close his eyes several times from the harsh reality that he was forced to look at. There was a madman out there killing people and taking their souls.


 

Life took several hectic turns from there one out, things just began to change and change and change. The hunt was on, more so than normal. And it kept building and building until it reached an exploding point. That point being a mall when single groups all became one. It started out like a normal day, nothing bad happening, but it didn’t stay that way. Parker, Peggy, and Amy were all there to lift some new clothing so that they could settle in. Nate had followed Eliot, Colin, and Quinn to a small restaurant in the mall for a quick bite to eat. James hadn’t quit looking for Nate when he realized what his friend had done and so their merry little group where one his trail.

Alec had been the only anomaly, sitting by himself eating. He was keeping his head down and trying to blend in. Become a chameleon, of course, things never work out like that for him. One second, he is eating the next there is a sharp shrill scream coming from his left and then all hell breaks loose, and Alec is running for his life. Because the people that are there aren’t after the civilians they are there for him.

It takes about two seconds for all of those in the Cancer circle to feel it. The pain and fear of one of their own fighting for their life. Eliot is the first to move, he is the one with the strongest connection. He is out of his seat in a matter of seconds rushing to the source.

A loud cry and the slice of a knife is all the information that Alec gets before he finds himself on his back a nasty looking man bending down in front of him. A knife pressed to his skin drawing blood, allowing it to leak down him. He can hear that sharp laugh and a horrid voice call out, ‘He wants him alive.’

Alec knows, knows who it is that wants him alive, has been running from the man his whole entire life. Now it would seem that he has finally caught up to him. As he embraces from the pain to come something else happens. The man that is straddling him is forced off him and another human comes into sight.

He has long brown hair and mysterious eyes. The man reaches for Alec and grasps his hand pulling him up. There is this strange sort of electricity that goes through the two of them as they touch that has Alec pulling his hand back so fast and pushing them into fists.

“What do you want?”

It isn’t hard for Eliot to see the marks on Alec’s wrist, the symbols that show that he is part of the Cancer Circle. They would normally be well hidden by the boy’s shirt, or that is what Eliot thinks, but in the tussle, they were revealed. There isn’t an easy way to tell him what is going on.

“I felt you calling for me?”

It sounds stupid but Alec knows it’s the truth, he can see it in his eyes. He lowers his hands and shoves them into his pockets as others come running. This isn’t what he was expecting. Alec suddenly feels very, very out of it. Like this isn’t something that he should be apart of. His want to run is so strong, and yet he still wants to stay with the man that he is with right now.

“My name is Alec,” he whispers out softly, trying very hard to fall into the background.

Sophie is the first of the new group to speak up, she also can see his marks, “A Cancer member.”

Alec flinches and yanks down his sleeve trying to hide the evidence. Sophie is quick to grab his wrist or to go for it, but Eliot intercepts her, “Don’t,” it’s a command but it’s said softly.

Sophie lets out an annoyed little growl, “Why not?”

Alec is trying to find an exit now, he doesn’t know what is going on but he doesn’t like it. Something is off, something is very, very wrong. He wants to get out. It’s only a heavy hand on his shoulder that stops him. Only then does he notice that he is starting to have a panic attack.

“Take a breath, try to calm down. We don’t want to hurt you; I’m a Cancer member as well. I think,” Eliot takes a deep breath before looking around and then back to Alec, “That you called all of us.”

Alec doesn’t move at first, he is still freaking out, there are too many people, too much going on. He is trying to take deep breaths, but it’s working that entire well. He closes his eyes and tries to calm down. Alec can’t help the tears that start to fall down his cheeks; he has been running for so long that he doesn’t quite know how to accept help or how to take the care from others. Beyond that, Alec doesn’t like big groups they give him to much worry. He is far more exposed this way.

Alec stands up on wobbly legs before pushing past the group, “too exposed he mumbles wiping the tears from his cheeks.”

Eliot agrees this place with all of them here in one place will be bad. There is just something that isn’t’ sitting right with him. It’s as if they are being watched, waiting for something, or someone to mess up and allow them all to be captured. He tries to stick to Alec the best that he can but he can tell that the other is having issues. And with some realization, he notes that it isn’t really him but the amount of attention that is focused on Alec.

A boy that so use to living in the dark, to not be seen, has to blend in this had to be a huge culture shock to him.

“We can go to my place…” Alec mumbles, “But if I tell you to leave you will and you won’t find me again.”

It’s clear that he means it; the way that the last part is said, he will disappear and he won’t be found again. Eliot wonders if that is how he has always lived his life. Running from one place to another. Little did they all know that was exactly was Alec did, he blended but also moved on. If one place became too hot he moved on. Training his body to leave everything behind including accents and languages.


 

The journey to Alec’s place was long and tedious, though he lived in an area that was well known he lead them around quite a bit before leading them to his home. It was just as well as Eliot was sure for a while they were being tracked. But once there it was obvious that they were all safe now.

The place felt like home, and it felt safe. Eliot could say that he hadn’t ever felt that way about a place before even with Colin’s security put into place. This place just felt so safe and he wasn’t all that sure why. The answer was obvious to him once he saw the way that Alec interacts with his home.

“You’re like Colin.” Eliot couldn’t help say in such wonder.

Alec couldn’t help but wrinkling his nose in annoyance as he huffed, “no one is like me and I sure as hell aren’t like anyone else.”

The laugh that left Quinn’s mouth was well worth it, “Eliot doesn’t underestimate the boy's powers. He’s obviously very unique.”

A soft kiss is pressed to Colin’s head and Alec watches with curiosity as the boy relaxes and stairs at Alec’s show of power. Colin is sure that Alec doesn’t even realize that he is showing off. Showing all of his lovely power but he is. The way that he is connected with every electric thing in the room is a terrifying show of power and a terrifying show of reality.

It’s Parker’s bright and sharp voice that drops them out of everything, “It’s you. You’re the one we’ve been feeling.”

The way that the room jolts isn’t a surprise at all; they had all been thinking it. But no one was willing to say anything.

“Me… What do you mean?”

It isn’t fear that is laced in his voice; no it’s something else. A surprise or wonder, after all, why would the whole world be feeling him?

“I think,” Peggy, says softly, “there is some explaining that needs to be done.” She says it softly like a mother as she looks around at the others, because even they can’t seem to get what is going on.


 

It wasn’t common knowledge how Circle members came to be; the only ones that knew the whole stories were on the member from each circle. The member that could remember everything from their past lives. They would be the ones that could pass on the information down the line to the other members of their circle. This wasn’t always the case, as some things would be lost to time.

Peggy took her time explaining all of this and while Parker already knew this she didn’t interrupt. While Alec watched in strange fascination that Peggy would even know some of this information. Quinn was the first to speak up asking about how she could know these things. Peggy then explained that Parker had been raised by another circle member and Peggy would often sneak into this man’s home. She found a lot of information.

Some of the information that she found was a map with red pins all over it and a name Alec with a couple of question marks. The dates and times, but what the most important was the date of Alec’s birth when a surge of power reached across the world.

“A day that we were all alive, or most of us and we all felt it. Something powerful had been born. Brought into this world. It doesn’t happen that often and most of the time Circle members will look for this powerhouse and try to kill it.”

That left them with more questions than answers, why would they want to do that. Eliot took over there. Peggy couldn’t really explain that one.

His name is Damien Monroe and he feeds off the power and souls of other circle members. The man had raised Eliot and for the longest time that he lived with him, he had never once aged a day. He remembered bringing other circle members to this man, to his father. Of course, Damien wasn’t Eliot’s father, but the man had found him and turned him into the person that he is today.

Some other things had happened but Eliot didn’t go into detail about that; what he did say was that there was a lot of experimenting that happened and he was raised to hunt down other Circle members and bring them to Damien. When asked why he stopped, left he really couldn’t say why. What had made him stop, he knew the answer but it wasn’t something that he was ready to share with them yet.

He tells them how Damien would take the souls and power of other circle members, increasing his powers and his lifespan, but he needs more. He needs Alec’s soul; he seems to be connected to it somehow.

“We were lovers.”

The shock of the words leaving Alec’s lips surprises everyone. Alec looks down at his feet, “When I was first born I was a female. A lady of the court I think, I don’t have a lot of memories from that time.”

He goes on to explain that the one thing that he remembers the most is his death. The love that he felt as Damien killed him and then the anger. The want for revenge the need to kill before Damien killed again. Of course, Damien always got to him first, killed many, many reincarnations of him. He has been running his entire life. Whenever he felt Damien getting close he would have dream memories of his death and he would move on.

Alec explained that it was the soul connections of his first soul connect. Eliot understood that better than anyone. Before Alec and he could complete their soul, connection Damien would have to die. There wasn’t anything else too it.

It was a strange and quiet revelation at this whole, process, and everyone could see that Alec himself believed that it was his job to kill Damien Monroe. The question was could he do it? Would they even allow him to do it?


 

That night they all piled into Alec’s house. No one went back to his or her own places the feeling of safety sat strongly within the compounds of Alec’s home. Yet something didn’t set right with Alec and he found himself sitting out on his balcony at two in the morning.

His mind kept wandering, kept going back to the thoughts of Damien. How he was connected to this man, a man that would keep chasing him all over the world. It was so quiet that Alec didn’t even realize that another joined him outside until a hand landed softly on his shoulder.

“Alec,” the voice soft, “Why aren’t you sleeping?”

Alec turns and looks at Sophie giving her a forced smile, “Just thinking. I don’t sleep much.”

It isn’t a lie he really doesn’t sleep that much. He is often plagued with dreams of his past life and he doesn’t know if they are going to be happy or of him dying. Of course, he always knows to move when he sees the dreams of his first life’s death, but here lately he hasn’t had any of those just all the other deaths. Alec doesn’t like dreaming of dying. So instead he stays awake as long as he can. If only so that he can live in the now and suffer less.

Sophie hums as she sits down, “I miss judged you, actually I’ve to miss judged a lot of people in my life. I don’t trust easily. And I can tell that you don’t either.”

Alec doesn’t say anything as she speaks, “I guess I should be more trusting but we’ve all been hunted. I just never guessed there was someone out there that was hunted even more than me and my family.”

Alec closes his eyes, “I’m sorry. I’ll kill him… you won’t be hunted anymore.”

He says it so softly but Sophie can hear the tremble in his voice and the fear. He isn’t a killer and she knows this, “NO,” her voice sharp, “you can’t kill him. We’ll find another way.”

Alec stands abruptly, “Do you know how many times he has killed me? No, you don’t! If I don’t kill him then he will keep doing it. He will keep killing others. I can’t let that happen. I have to kill him.”

Sophie’s eyes widen in a strange sort of fear but slowly they close and she leans back watching Alec in his defensive pose. He is shaking and there are tears in his eyes. He isn’t a killer, but he will become one if it stops the toll of death. If it stops the meaningless dreams, and the pain that he can’t seem to escape.

Before Alec can say something else strong arms wrap around him, a strange sort of calm comes over him and his breath hitches, “You aren’t a killer Alec, but I am…”

Eliot buries his face into the back of Alec’s neck, “I am the protector, and I will do everything to protect you, even if that means killing someone. Taking another life so that you don’t ever have to do that. You should never have to do that. It isn’t your job. Alec that isn’t your job.”

Sophie nods her head, “you aren’t alone anymore Alec. You… you have a family now.”

Alec couldn’t help the tears that fell faster from his eyes, his body slipping into the comfort that Eliot was providing. With some gentle maneuvering, Sophie and Eliot lead the worn-out boy back into the house and to bed.

With a soft good night and a promise to be there in the morning, Alec finally feels into a peaceful sleep.


 

Hours later Eliot finds himself still awake watching Alec sleep, he can’t seem to leave the boys side. But he knows that he has something that must be done. With a soft sigh, he gets up and kisses the top of Alec’s head before making his way towards the door.

Of course, Eliot doesn’t make it very far. Quinn sits by the door ready to stop him, “What do you think you are doing?”

Eliot lets out an annoyed sigh, “I have to do this Quinn. I have to end this.”

Quinn sighs, “Then I’m coming with you, and you’ll need backup.”

Eliot doesn’t stop him he just moves forward further only to be stopped by another voice, “I am coming with you as well.”

Both Eliot and Quinn turn to see Nate looking at them with a stern look, “look you might be able to find this man yourself. But you won’t be able to find us again. I promise you this the moment they awake and notice you are gone they will leave. I can track my own family. How do you think I kept tabs on you this whole time? Jim will be able to find us if needed. You need me to come to get you back. You do want to come back to Alec don’t you?”

It isn’t something that Eliot wants to answer at first, but after a second he grumbles, “yes. I want to be able to come back to him. He is my other half.”

Nate nods his head, “then we better get going. No time to waste.”


 

Nate was right of course the moment everyone awoke and found the three of them gone they packed up and moved on. It wouldn’t be good to stay there any longer. But instead of going their own spate ways they stayed together as a group a family.  While Nate, Eliot, and Quinn set off on their own journey to find Damien Monroe and end his reign.

It was a long couple of months, grueling for both companies. The lives that they were living, moving from one place to another but finally, the day came. It was mid-February, everything is muggy and wet. The battle itself wasn’t even that notable. Damien was like Eliot, a protector and his ability to use the elements was waning. He needed more souls to keep him alive and give him his power. He needed Alec and without him, he grew weak.

The battle took place in a plain with water in the air it was a strange sight to see. The feel of water being pushed and pulled against each other, but in the end, it was Eliot who prevailed. He held the most power and, in the end, the final blow was water being ripped from Damien’s body. They all watched flabbergasted as his body crumbled and turned to dust.

Their journey home was slow and long and all the while Eliot filled with a nervous dread that he had done the wrong thing. That this wasn’t something that he should have done. It had to be done yes but should he have left his family to do it. Was it worth it?


 

They found them in the park, out in the middle of the world. Everything had changed the world seemed safer now. There wasn’t a need to hide anymore. All of Damiens’ family and Circle had scattered after his death, as it was felt throughout the world. He would never again hurt another soul.

They were all eating lunch, having picnics when Alec noticed Eliot. His eyes shined with unshed tears as he rushed up to the man yanking him into a hug. Tears buried into his shoulder as whispered words of anger and pain left his mouth, “Don’t ever do that again… I didn’t think… you could have died.”

All Eliot could do was hold on to him as he watched Quinn be embraced by Colin getting similar treatment. He supposed he should be happy he didn’t get slapped as Quinn did. Not only Sophie but also Tara embraced Nate as well. It was a tearful reunion that left Eliot gasping for air realizing that this was his family and he would do it all again if it meant he could protect these people.

He finally pulled Alec back and brushed his nose against the others, “Never again, I’ll never leave you again. Always together,” he whispered, “Until the end.”

Alec smiled a watery smile, “Until the end,” and then pressed his lips to Eliot’s in the softest yet most emotional kiss. Trying to convey all of the emotions that he felt.

Finally, together, a family that nothing could tear apart.

-Fin