Chapter 2 :
Passing through the portal with Margali, Kurt and Jimaine, I looked around to see that we were not in Bavaria anymore but it wasn't Katmandu, the city where Kamar-Taj is. I turned around to ask my foster mother why she didn't teleport us directly there.
She took a while to answer, still hurt by her son's death. I couldn't really her blame for this. As horrible a person she is, she tuly loves her children.
Kurt and Jimaine were in various state of grief too with Kurt sitting motionless on the ground and Jimaine staring staight ahead at nothing in particular.
"You know very well why I didn't teleport you straight to Kamar-Taj." She finally said and I raised an eyebrow in askance. "I am not allowed to step foot in any of the sanctums. It is part of my punishment." She said bitterly.
"Why am I not surprised that you were banished ?" Jimaine interrupted with a glare. "Let me guess you sacrificied an innocent baby for more power and the Ancient One exiled you after kicking your ass." She sneered, most likely blaming her mother for what Stephan became. Her mother looked really hurt by her accusations and tried to talk back but I butted in the conversation while looking at Jimaine pointedly.
"What do you mean when you say that you are not allowed to step in the sanctums ?" I asked still looking at Jimaine. She huffed and went to sit by Kurt and tried to recomfort him.
"She put wards around Nepal, China and India to stop any of the exiled to step foot in her territory. I could breach them if I really wanted but I would need the help of a patron and I cannot do this as it would have attracted her attention and make her send her students after me." Margali explained.
I understood then. Because of Margali's exiled status, she is not allowed in any of the sanctums of magic under the juridiction of the Ancient One. In our studies, she told us that the majority of the practionners of the Mystic Arts came from Asia especially in places like China, India and all of their neighboring countries. If she teleported us in those countries then the Ancient One would have sent her subordianates to chase us away and we would have lost the opportunity to meet the Ancient One to explain our situation. However it leaves the question of how we are going to bypass all her wards and reach our destination. I voiced my question aloud and she answered.
"We are going to go on foot while using subtle cloaking magic to mask our signatures but we need to be as far away as possible from the Ancient One sight first. This is why I teleported us to Russia. It is the closest to Kamar-Taj without teleporting to the places where she'll detect us immediately like China and India." She explained and I nodded but there was a question that I needed an answer before we could leave.
"Why did you decide to take us to Kamar-Taj when you were so reluctant before ?"
She looked at me and seemed reluctant to answer but she did nonetheless. "I was foolish to think that I could teach you all myself. I'm not blind I've see that you all reached a wall in your development." She was right. I thought at first that we made good progress in five years but I realised that it wasn't enough compared to someone who studied for five years in Kamar Taj hence the reason of my and my siblings stagnation in our progression. If we studied there from the beginning we would have been much farther in our studies and maybe Stephan wouldn't have sought the darker arts.
"Every single practionner of the Mystic Arts needs to go through Kamar-Taj to become accomplished sorcerer. Those who don't, usually end up seeking power and magical knowledge from Evil beings like Dormammu and Mephisto through sacrifices." She explained and suddenly looked distraught. "If I took you there at the beginning of your training then maybe…maybe my son wouldn't have done what he did and died for nothing."
As I thought she knew about Stephan's …tendencies but she still did nothing to stop him. I sighed and decided that it was pointless to blame her for this. From her point of view Stephan's actions must have been just a phase he was going through even if that phase led to the death of innocent children. After all she is the woman who didn't hesitate to kill our acrobat mentor Sabu, a man who helped her raise her children, just to convince her daughter to follow the Winding Way.
"It's no use to talk about what if. The only thing we can do now is to move forward and live for Stephan. That's what he would have wanted." I said looking at every members of my family.
They still seemed distraught which was to be expected considering what happened but they all nodded resolutely especially my brother Kurt who seemed determined.
"Let's go, we have long road ahead." I said and we all moved forward.
We have been walking for a few days now, none of us talking much, still grieving for the death of a member of our family.
Margali casted on us a spell that will allow us to stay hidden from the sight of the Ancient One and also put an illusion on both Kurt and I to hide our "exotic " apearance.
According to Margali, we were in Russia. It was the farthest we could start our journey without alerting the Sorceress Supreme. However it wasn't the Ancient One that preoccupied my mind.
It was my brother Kurt who seemed to become more and more recluse these last few days and despite Jimaine best efforts to confort him, it didn't seem to work. So I waited for a few days for when we will finally be alone to talk.
Jimaine and Margali were sleeping and Kurt was on a guard duty. Why do we need someone to guard us ? Well, we never know what kind of danger we could find in the middle of Russia. Better safe than sorry.
Anyway I waited for Kurt's guard duty so that I could talk to him about what's bothering him even if I have a pretty good idea to what it is.
"Kurt." I called out while walking in his direction.
He looked at me. "Big bro, why are you still awake ?"
"I wanted to talk to you because I'm worried about you, brother. You have been distant these past few. You know that you can tell me anything, right ?" I asked.
He didn't talk to me for a few seconds but he then looked at me with a pleading look on his face. "Stephan…Stephan wasn't the one who commited these atrocities, right ? He would never do suct a thing." As I thought, he was in denial and couldn't accept that his best friend did such a thing.
I prepared myself to tell him the truth but someone else interrupted me before I could.
"He did." Jimaine interrupted and looked at Kurt with a sad look on her face.
Kurt got up with an angry look on his face. "How could you accuse him of commiting such atrocities ? He was your brother. He…he would have never killed innocents children." He snarled at Jimaine.
But Jimaine replied calmly despite Kurt outburst. "And that's exactly because he is my brother that I know that it was him. You know that he has been acting strangely. Always angry and that mad look in his eyes. I'm sure that you have seen it too Kurt."
Kurt couldn't accept it and still tried to defend his best friend. "Steph-" "She's right." I interrupted suddenly and Kurt looked at me with a betrayed look but I didn't let it affect me.
"Stephan was jealous of Jimaine. He resented her because Margali chose her over him to follow the path of the Winding Way. He wanted to grow more powerful to show his mother that she was wrong to chose her and because he had no other way to grow more powerful but using sacrifices. He decided to kill the children of Wizendolf to open the path of the Winding Way. However commiting these atrocities tainted his soul and made him fall even deeper into the abyss. For all sorcerer, the line between good and evil is really thin and it is really easy to fall even deeper into the darker aspects of magic when you have already commited unforgivable sins. As a result, Stephan continued to kill the children for more power but it made him mad in the process." I explained to Kurt with a grim look while Jimaine looked down most likely blaming herself for Stephan going mad.
Kurt looked at his hands in anguish. "All of this is my fault. We made a promise…a promise that I will stop him if he ever were to took the wrong path and kill innocents but I was too self-absorbed to see it." He said , blaming himself and Jimaine took him in her arms.
"It's not your fault Kurt. If the fault lies in someone it would be my mother and I." She said with tears in her eyes and looking a me with guilt most likely thinking of our roles in Stephan's murder.
I gripped down their shoulders. "It's pointless to blame yourselves for Stephan's death. The only thing we can do is to remember him as the kind young man he was rather than the monster he became. I'm sure that it is what he would have wanted." I said while subtly reminding Jimaine that what we did was necessary. .
They both nodded but Kurt seemed to still be troubled by something.
"These villagers. Why did they try to kill us for something we didn't do ? They called us children of the devil even though they were always the first people to come to our spectacles. Some of them knew us since we were children and yet they still had so much hatred toward us. Why ?" He asked with a look of deep confusion on his face.
I looked at him and knew that it was finally time to tell him the truth. Since we were children I always tried to keep him away from people who would hate us for our appearance and powers like Herr Getmann. However I was too overprotective and it made him somewhat naive of the real world. It was time to rectify this.
"It's because we are mutants." I said simply and he looked at me in confusion.
"That's it ? Because we are mutants but you told me that these powers were gifts and our appearance nothing more than a side-effect so why would they hate us for this?"
"Look at us Kurt." I said pointing at our bodies." These people, when they look at us, they do not see fellow human beings. No they see freaks, unnatural monster, rabid dog to be put down. Our people, the mutants, are hated wherever they go even if they do not have obvious mutations like we do. Humanity fear what they cannot understand and what they fear, they hate and destroy."
"But the people of circus never treated us like monsters." Kurt said.
"We were lucky to have grown up in a circus where people with differences gather together. If someone other than Margali found us that day then we would have been most likely killed before our fist birthday and I'm sure you have seen the way Getmann and his men would look at us sometimes." He nodded reminiscing about Getmann disdain toward us. "Getmann's reactions is what we will most likely face in the outside world. Fear, disdain and mistrust. The villagers thought that we were wearing costumes but look at what the've done the moment they realised that it was our real appearance, they tried to kill us immediately. This irrationnal fear and hatred, it won't be the last time that we are going to face this. We will gain a plethora of enemies out for our lives the moment people will hear about us. We will have to fight with people who wish to kill us simply for our differences but also with people who would want to experiment on us for our powers. "
Kurt was clenching his fists tightly while Jimaine was looking at us worriedly but I wasn't finished.
"This is why I have been trying to make us stronger since we were young. Why I have been teaching you how to use your powers and learn magic. I have done all this so that we could survive and protect our family. After all If we become strong enough to crush anyone who dare to come after us then they will most likely stop altogether and we will finally be free." I said with conviction at both Kurt and Jimaine.
I know that it was a flawed logic but it was better than hiding like a coward for the rest of our life.
"Strong… I have been complacent all these years. Not taking my training with my powers and magical lessons seriously. Always playing around like an idiot, too weak and blind to see what his best friend was becoming." Kurt whispered and looked back at me resolutely. "I have decided. I will become strong. Strong enough to never let what happened to Stephan happen again and protect our family from all people who want us harm." He said with conviction and I couldn't help but to look at him with pride.
Little brothers grow us so fast.
It was also exactly what I wanted. I was too protective and he grow up to be weak and naive. It needed to change. Now that he finally found his motivation to become stronger, he'll thrown himself in his studies. Moreover by telling him about the outside world treatment of mutants, it will make him less likely to follow Charles Xavier and his foolish dream .
I have nothing against the man and his dream of coexistence but his dream was doomed from the beginning. Mostly because his methods left a lot to be desired. Seriously did he really think that by showing the good exemple and putting out fire here and there will make humanity sees us in a good light. We do not need to prove them anything and we are not animals to be paraded around. Further more I more than anyone know the results of his dream.
Misery after misery will befall the X-men and the mutants because Xavier and his students are too passive-reactive. Genosha, the Sentinels, the Purifiers and Magneto are proof my statement.
Not like Magneto, Mr. the jewish mutant supremacist who do not even see his ressemblance with his nazi oppressors, is any better. He will make the situations of the mutants go from worse to worser especially in his role in Scarlet Witch breakdown and subsequently M-Day.
No, my brother needed to be as far away as possible from the X-men and their enemies or they will drag us down to the same level of misery and despair.
Of course it doesn't mean that I will not deal permanently with some of their enemies. After all their death will be benificial to my and my family continual survival.
Waking up from my thoughts, I looked at my brother and told him how proud I was of him.
"Let's become strong together. To protect our family." I told him while offering him my hand.
"To protect our family." He repeated with a resolute voice while taking my hand.
"To protect our family." Jimaine butted in while placing both her hands in ours.
We looked at her in surprise and she huffed.
"What ?! You thought that I will not want to help now that I know all the people who will come after you I am not a damsel in distress, you know? I will become strong and protect you two. We are a family after all."She scolded with a mischievous smile and we all ended up laughing.
I looked at my siblings finally chatting happilly after days of being in a state of misery and thought that everything was gonna be alright
Two days later
I shouldn't have invoked Murphy's law like an idiot.
We were all looking at a burning village with all the inhabitants of the village running around in panic. However what shocked me was not the burning village but the two young people at the center of this disaster.
I was looking at a young man near my age with white hair running at impossible speed in the direction of a teenage girl. The teenage girl had brown hair and was wearing red clothes and she was creating a barrier with a touch of chaos that I could feel with my magical senses. She seemed to be in anguish and clearly didn't know what she was doing while the young man tried to save her but couldn't pass through the barrier.
I immediately deduced who these two people were. After all I know of only one pair of white-haired speedster and brown-haired witch. And well, the villagers screaming of a 'Witch' also helped me a little.
Now, What the fuck are Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver, both of them with powers by the way, doing in the middle of Russia?
Seriously, fuck my luck.
Author's notes :
Thank you for reading!
Not much happened in this chapter as I wanted to flesh Kurt and Jimaine's character. I felt like I didn't show enough of their siblings bond in the previous chapter so I rectified this in this one.
I also decided to write shorter chapter for this story with at least 2500 words a chapter. At first I wanted to write the encounter with the Maximoff twins and The Ancient One in one go but it would have been too much and I felt like that I would have needed to write 10K words for all of these scenes.
Anyway I hope that you enjoyed it and don't forget to leave tons of reviews.
Until Next Time!