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Mature story contains dark themes involving graphic violence and taboo topics that may contain triggers for sensitive readers. Please do not read further if this bothers you.

Rich Boy: Growing Pains - 30. Chapter 30

Worthington sighed as he looked at his computer monitor and closed his eyes before continuing typing the conclusion of the after-action report. He was back in Clairville, after spending Christmas and the next few days conducting ‘clean-up' operations on the island off the coast of California. Typing this report was one of the most difficult things he'd ever done and put it off as long as he could, trying to deal with the emotions and swirling thoughts that were running through him.

The cleanup operations are complete, and we were able to adjust the memories of 241 civilians that were treatable after their time with the demons. The cover story of an uncontrollable fire appears to have been accepted, although the tremendously high casualty figures are still creating a news sensation. What we have learned from this operation has given us a clearer picture of demon operations and revealed the true scope of their threat.

As we learned from interrogation of the demon-controlled mage Thomas Kink, a group of three abnormally powerful young people, all related, managed to summon a demon lord fifteen years ago even though they did not even know they were mages. As a result of the summoning, all three were taken over by three demon lords, Zaroc, Blasoc, and Noloc. Each of these demons was given orders by the Demon Queen and has been conducting operations for the past fifteen years.

Zaroc was defeated last year in Northern Arizona. His mission was to create a permanent conclave for the demons on this world. Because of internal competitiveness within the demon hierarchy, all three operated independently and did not attempt to share information. As a result, their preparations have taken longer and been easier to disrupt.

Blasoc was tasked with creating a new breed of demon by mixing human and demon DNA. They learned of the concept of genetic information from humans captured by their mages and controlled by lesser demons. Over the past decade, Blasoc has been conducting a two-pronged approach to his task.

First has been straightforward breeding between demon males and human females. Using magic and modern fertility treatment technology, they successfully bred half-human demon children. The mothers died on childbirth, but their offspring maintained demon characteristics while being able to live without restriction in our environment. Most of these children are in the age range of newborn to eight years of age and escaped aboard the unknown submarine that is still being hunted by United States Naval Forces.

Their second approach was corrupting the genetic structure of human children through repeated rapes. Using magic, we have not been able to understand, they used the semen deposited in the rectum or stomachs of their victims to combine with the child's human genes. The result was the children encountered by the force led by Worthington Sinclair.

Four children who were at the beginning of this process have been recovered and are currently being examined by genetic scientists and some of the most experienced mage healers known in the world. Their preliminary reports indicate they were able to stop the progression of the demonic DNA through the children's bodies. All four children will be held and continue to be monitored. It is possible that research may find a way to reverse the effects, and their continued assistance will be valuable in learning how to deal with children in whom the process has been completed.

The mission, and location of the mages controlled by the third demon lord, Noloc, is completely unknown at this time, although it is likely the escapees from Blasoc's controlled forces are attempting to link up with them, even as it is believed the escaped forces from Zaroc have done already. All available resources are being prepared to hunt for Noloc as well as the escaped demon-controlled forces of Blasoc and Zaroc. This task is being given the highest of priorities.

Worthington frowned as he finished typing, saved the document and forwarded it by email to Nick, who would then edit it for grammar, spruce it up a bit, and then send it on to Huntington. From there it would be edited again, and then forwarded on up the chain to the DHS Secretary and the President, who were both reportedly ‘anxious' to read the final report. Worthington had to laugh to himself, even if it was a grim laugh, that the report they were reading had been written by a guy who would be going back to high school in two days.

Their heaviest casualties in that encounter had been those soldiers who were assigned to Worthington's unit. The demon children had killed most of them. Rodriguez and two others had barely survived, and Worthington himself had some fresh scars on his chest that even the best healers were unable to totally heal. They served as fresh reminders that he should never grow complacent in facing demons, that there were always new surprises waiting around every corner.

He stood up, wrinkled his nose at the smell of sweat coming off of his body, and headed out of his office. It was still early in the morning, and he'd waited to type the report until after his morning run. That was why none of the ‘secretaries,' or his assistants were in yet. Worthington was still wearing his sweat pants and sweat shirt after his morning run with the troops and had decided to just hurry up and get the report finished so he could take a few hours later today just for himself.

The truth was that he hated the way he was feeling split into two or was it three? There were so many things pulling on him at the moment that he had a hard time keeping everything straight in his head. It would be so easy to simplify his life a bit by giving some things up, but a long talk the day before with Barrett de Long had convinced him that giving up the things he had been considering would be worse for him in the long run.

"The fact remains, Worthington, you really are just seventeen." Barrett had advised him in that calming voice of his. When he said the things he said, it was not insulting or derogatory, just a statement that Worthington could accept or reject, and what he said made sense. "Yes, you can accomplish so much more than most seventeen-year-olds because you have been graced with natural talent, and a life full of preparation for the path you are walking, but you are not yet truly an adult. Right now they may seem like a waste of your time, but in the long run, things like school, having real friends, and being able to take some simple pleasures in life will help you. Putting them aside to focus on the problems of the day won't really help."

Worthington had heard those words and listened to them, so he was planning on returning to school, despite the worries of the people in the government. It was bad enough that they were depending on him as if he was a full adult, but to remind them of his youth was like a slap in the face. Fortunately, Randall Smythe had been able to step in and help with some things. Ever since he'd come to Clairville, his father's friend and soul-bound Channel had been proving to be extremely helpful as he took a more active role in working with the government and was even being considered to permanently take the ‘Director of Mage Operations' position that Worthington was holding on a temporary basis.

It was hard to imagine the friendly, helpful man as having been close to his father, but when Worthington looked at Brandon, he could see many similarities in their personalities. Brandon had even admitted that maintaining a personality that was always dominated by their soul-bonded was part of their training. The soul-bound channel reacted to the personality of their dominant partner, and while Worthington and Randall were not soul-bound, old habit was making the man respond to Worthington's own personality.

"Good morning," Worthington said politely to the two soldiers who were on guard duty at the top of the stairs to the fourth floor. Both men nodded at him without speaking, and Worthington crossed the floor to the staircase that led up to the fifth floor where his ‘household' was located.

"Good morning, sir." These two guards at the top of the staircase did speak to him, and he stood chatting with them for a few moments before heading into his own room. Security was far tighter in the Keep now than it had ever been before, and would continue to stay that way for the foreseeable future. With four children in the Keep who had been partway through the conversion process of the demons, everyone was slightly nervous about security, even if the children had been nothing but helpful, and should be well on the way to recovery.

Certain facts about those children he had not put into the report, but he thought about them as he made his way into his own room and turned on the water for his shower. Standing under the spray from multiple showerheads, he thought about those children and shivered ever so slightly. All four of them were beautiful, with pale skin that wouldn't tan no matter how much time they spent in the sun, two with pitch black hair and two with blond hair, and sweet, innocent faces. Their eyes were still tinged with red, and the healers expected that would never change, while their nails were sharp, but no longer the beginnings of demon talons.

Magically, they were powerful as well, already bordering on Adept status and all four of them were likely to grow strong enough to be considered low-level Adepts by the time they were full-grown. All of them were physically strong as well, and could easily overpower even the strongest of the soldiers in the area. Surprisingly they were still blessedly innocent, despite having been repeatedly raped by green-skinned Oska demons.

That was part of the conversion process, where the demons worked to keep their innocence intact as much as possible. They chose only the nicest, kindest, most innocent of children for their conversion process, and waited until the changes in the children were far enough long for their new demon natures to take over, turning them into evil killers. For some reason, that increased their power and made the conversion more permanent. In the case of these four though, their demon natures had not reached that point, even though they had absorbed the power of several human mages that were slowly killed in front of them.

All four children had begged to be killed by Worthington, and anyone who came into contact with them. They knew what was planned for them, and were terrified of being turned into cold-blooded killers like the other demon children they had been quartered with on that island. None of them wanted to become like that, and so they begged for death, afraid that the changes inside them were permanent and irreversible.

The healers that had been working with them had told Worthington that some of the changes truly were irreversible, but that their personalities were largely intact, and that the demon nature inside of them would never be able to grow strong enough to take over unless they were recaptured. Trying to convince the boys of that hadn't resulted in much progress, yet. Still, Worthington was determined to do right by them. They would never enjoy a normal life, would always be watched, but there was no reason why they could not have a good, happy life as much as possible within certain constraints. He would use every bit of his influence and power to give them that. That's what he promised himself once again as he turned off his shower and began to dry off before wrapping a towel around his waist and going back into his room.

"Hope you don't mind." Kyle's voice surprised him as he entered his room. There was Kyle, sitting at the small table in a corner of the room. There was a fresh tray on it, with what looked like breakfast for two, as well as a pot of tea.

"No, it's just fine," Worthington said as he tried not to blush and hurried over to the screened changing area next to his closet. Kyle was wearing tight-fitting jean shorts and a very tight green t-shirt from his old high school's baseball team. His brown hair was neatly trimmed, and he looked altogether too handsome for so early in the morning.

At least Worthington didn't have to worry about his hair since he'd freshened up his crew cut just the day before. He dressed in a typical pair of black leather pants and one of the tight-fitting woven metal shirts. This was a new one, dark stormy gray with black and white dwarven runes flowing down the left side. Sapha had said the runes were merely a representation of his name, but Worthington was wondering how he could fit lessons in the dwarven language into his schedule just so he'd know for sure.

"Did you enjoy this morning's run?" Worthington asked as he finished getting dressed and came around the corner. Kyle had been joining them every morning on the runs since Worthington had come back.

"Yes," Kyle said with a smile. "After I showered, I went down and asked Sapha for some breakfast. I figured when you came up, we could eat together. You've been so busy we haven't spent a lot of time together, just the two of us."

"Oh." Worthington frowned. "I'm sorry, it's just that I've…"

"Don't apologize." Kyle laughed as he poured what proved to be coffee from the tea pot, not tea. Worthington sighed with pleasure as he took a sip after pouring in cream and sugar. "You're a busy guy, and it's hard for you to find time for everyone who wants something from ya, so I thought I'd take the initiative."

"How have you been doing?" Worthington said as he tried not to blush. To say that he was still confused about his ‘relationship' with Kyle was an understatement.

"Not too bad," Kyle said after swallowing a bite of bacon. Worthington began to pick at his own food, knowing he should be eating more, but his appetite had not been all that strong the last few days. "Ah broke up with Dianne."

"Why?" Worthington asked as his stomach did a flip-flop. Suddenly the orange slices on his plate looked far more appetizing than they had a minute ago. He picked one up with his left hand and savored the juicy fruit.

"Ah realized Ah was just usin' her," Kyle said with his west Texas drawl that grew thicker whenever he was nervous, and now he was the one moving food around his plate with his fork. His tanned cheeks held the slightest of blushes. "It wasna' fair to her, so after Christmas I told her."

"What did you tell her exactly?" Worthington asked with a bit of nervousness, and Kyle blushed deeper, looking at his plate.

"Ah told her that it just wasna' workin' out." He shrugged. "Ah didna' think she'd like the full truth too much, and Lord knows we both have enough problems at school without her spreadin' around we're queer for each other."

"We are?" Worthington asked with a raised eyebrow and a half-smile. He was feeling good about Kyle's words. They were one of the few bright spots he'd had recently, although even they brought their own complications.

"Well, Ah'm queer for you at least." Kyle shrugged, and those words were barely above a whisper.

"I guess I am too," Worthington said gently and felt his own cheeks heating up just a bit.

"You're queer for yerself?" Kyle asked with a hint of a smile, and Worthington laughed.

"God that sounds bad." Worthington chortled and began to eat more. Kyle just smiled and also took a few bites as they shyly looked at each other while eating.

"What now?" Kyle asked quietly after they'd both all but finished the food on their plates.

"With what?" Worthington asked, not really trying to be mean, but for some reason, he was feeling a bit shy. Sure, he'd had sex with dozens and dozens of guys, in all types of situations since he was a little kid, but this felt different. What was going on between him and Kyle was a far different thing than he'd ever experienced before, even with Jamie or Jeremy.

"With us," Kyle said a lot more confident than he'd been a few minutes ago. "You and me."

"I do like you, Kyle," Worthington said slowly after thinking things through for a few minutes. "In fact, I like you a heck of a lot. You know I've been in a relationship before, but this is different with you. To be honest, I've barely even looked at any other guys since I met you. Part of me thinks I could go all my life without sleeping with another guy, if I have you, even if we've never done more than kiss."

"Jamie and Ah have been talkin'," Kyle said, slowly. "He explained about some of the things you do and how they need sex to work right. Ah can live with that, you know. There may be times Ah have to do it maself, and it'd be hypocritical of me to be upset with you for that."

"Thank you," Worthington said with a blush.

"What do you expect from me, if we, if we pursue this, whatever it is between us?" Kyle asked with a frown as he took a sip of his own black coffee.

"I–I want you to be happy," Worthington said slowly as he sipped his own coffee and gave thought to something he'd not really thought over before. "You know what I've got on my plate, and it's not going to get any easier as the years go by. I don't expect you to wait around for me to finish things up and then take time for you, but, it'd be nice to find time for each other, you know? We should take things slowly too, not rush into anything. Don't get me wrong, every night I'm thinking about you when… you know, but I don't want to rush it just yet."

"Neither do I," Kyle said as his cheeks heated up yet again. "I mean, I think about you a lot, but I want to do it right, take it slow and get to know you better while you get to know me too. Things like this, having breakfast together, or just finding time to do things every so often would be nice."

"It would," Worthington said.

"So, are we dating, then?" Kyle asked as he stretched out, and Worthington felt Kyle's foot touch his tentatively under the table.

"Yeah, uh, I think we are," Worthington said as Kyle's foot moved up and rubbed against his lower leg.

"Good," Kyle said, and his foot was gone as he leaned forward over the table. Worthington leaned forward, and their lips met in a tentative kiss that quickly deepened into something more, with their tongues reaching out. Kyle was a damn good kisser, and Worthington was hard as a rock as the kiss progressed.

"Damn." Worthington moaned as they broke the kiss when there was a knock at the door. Kyle was grinning foolishly and sighed as he sat back in his chair.

"Well, we'll probably have to get used to that too." Kyle murmured as whoever was at the door, knocked again.

"Come in!" Worthington called out while smiling at Kyle. He'd kissed people dozens of times, but that was by far one of the nicest kisses he'd ever had.

"Sorry to interrupt your breakfast, but the healers want to talk to you this morning," Brandon said with a knowing smile on his face as he walked into the room with a fairly large file in his hands. "Randall also has these reports that he'd like you to look over before your lunch with him."

"Let's get started." Worthington sighed and looked over at Kyle, who was just smiling at him. "Thanks for the breakfast, Kyle."

"See you later, Worthie," Kyle said with a grin as he began to clean up the table. That caused a blush to form on Worthington's face, and he smiled before turning back to Brandon whose grin had grown wider.

"Shut up." Worthington snapped at Brandon, who only smiled more.

"It's about damn time." Brandon snorted as he handed over several sheets of paper while following Worthington out of the room.

"Mind your own business." Worthington mock-snarled at Brandon who just laughed harder.

"You forget, you are my business." Brandon countered, and Worthington growled in mock anger.

"Okay, so what am I going to face with the healers?" Worthington asked, getting down to business even as he was looking at the report from Randall Smythe. His father's attorney was worried about some possible shady dealings of his uncle with the board seat that he'd gotten as part of the ‘settlement' over the estate. Smythe wanted to spend a substantial sum of money on private investigators to look into those dealings.

"They want to go over some Dark path magic with you," Brandon answered the question on the other hot issue of the moment. "From what they told me, they believe that there might be some Dark magic that can be used on the kids to help make sure they don't fall under the sway of demons again. That's their biggest concern at this point."

"I'm not sure." Worthington frowned as one answer, came immediately to mind, but he pushed it away immediately. These kids were far too innocent, far too young, and did not deserve that kind of treatment by anyone.

"Mr. Sinclair, it's good to meet with you again." Doctor Parmal Kuhn said as they entered the second-floor conference room that had been reserved for this meeting. Dr. Kuhn was an elderly man, just below Adept-level in mage power, and one of the most skilled geneticists in the world. The other three doctors, all women, also stood. None of them were weak when it came to mage power, all of them were in their fifties, and all were Light path mages. "I believe you know doctors Hamalpai, Northham, and Pomona?"

"Yes, it's good to see all of you again." Worthington nodded to them as he sat down. Hamalpai was a Neurologist from Australia, Northham was a general practitioner from New Hampshire, and Pomona was a psychiatrist referred to him by de Long.

"We asked for this meeting in the hopes that you might know, or be able to direct us to someone who does, any Dark path magic that can help the boys." Dr. Kuhn began without much preamble. Worthington appreciated that about the man. He preferred to go direct to the point instead of beating around the bush.

"All four boys are remarkably sound, psychologically speaking." Dr. Pomona added as she pushed her dark brown hair out of her eyes. "They are all making great progress in dealing with the emotional and psychological trauma they have experienced, but they all retain a great deal of fear about the future. It is a real possibility that the moment we relax our watching of them, they will attempt to commit suicide out of fear that the demons will get them again, or that they will ‘give in' to the demon nature that remains inside them, becoming monsters."

"We know the Dark path contains many spells of control that the Light path doesn't." Dr. Northham said in her deep voice. "Normally, I wouldn't even consider allowing a patient to be put through them, but in this case, it might be necessary for the boys' peace of mind. Medically, there's not a lot more we can do for them."

"Unless we discover something new, we will never be able to unwind the demon DNA they have already absorbed from their human DNA," Kuhn added. "We've already done more than I dreamed possible, so there might be something we can do in the future, but for the present, we've reached the limit of what is currently possible."

"It's only been slightly more than a dozen days." Worthington frowned. "How can you say for certain…"

"Young man, you will have to take our word for this," Hamalpai said sternly. "I shudder at the thought of turning to Dark magic, but Light magic is at its end-point here, and science is of little help right now."

"I am familiar with most Dark spells that could be used in this situation," Worthington said slowly. "There's only one that the demons would not be able to break without knowing the exact procedure used and repeating that procedure themselves. As far as I know, only three people in the world know the procedure."

"What is it?" Dr. Kuhn asked with fascination as he leaned forward.

"I won't go into specifics." Worthington frowned. "Also, I'm going to say upfront I don't want to do it on these boys. Frankly, if I never have to do it again, I'll be happy. The procedure involves a great deal of physical torture using whips, knives, and other similar instruments while the subject is tied into excruciating positions. Magic is worked with each application of pain or bloodletting, and in the final step of the process, sexual domination is used to seal the spell. Afterwards, it's almost impossible to tell what was done to the person, and the subject can conceivably go their entire life without knowing anything was done to them at all."

"It sounds…gruesome." Pomona shivered. "But you say it's all but impossible to break?"

"It can't be broken, only re-done with new…instructions laid over the previous ones given." Worthington said with a shiver. "There is a physical seal made that can be seen on careful examination, but you have to know what you're looking for to find it, and you have to be able to perform the procedure to overwrite those instructions, whatever they are."

"You can make the instructions such that the kids won't be subverted by the demons?" Northham asked.

"Not necessarily." Worthington frowned. "More likely, it'd be best to instruct them to die, and they will do that without any means necessary such as slitting their own wrists. They could just will their heart to stop, and it will. The action would even be totally subconscious, so the demons wouldn't be aware of it until it was too late."

"I wouldn't like it, but it would reassure the boys," Pomona said with a frown. "I think it would be exactly what they need to proceed with their lives without fear, especially if they don't remember the procedure that was inflicted on them."

"I won't do it." Worthington snapped angrily and ignored their looks of surprise. "I am sorry, but I won't do it again. It's a violation of a person's free will, and, and I am not going to rape a twelve-year-old."

"If they consent…" Dr. Kuhn started to say, but Worthington glared at him as he slapped the table with his hand.

"No!" Worthington nearly shouted. "I don't care if it's consensual or not. They are twelve years old. They do not need me torturing them and fucking them with only their own blood for lubrication! I will not ever do it again if I can help it, and I won't consent to do it on these kids, or any other person again!"

"You've done this before?" Kuhn asked with a raised eyebrow.

"I couldn't learn the procedure without doing it, could I?" Worthington snapped at the man and shuddered. "Look, the fact of the matter is that these kids are going to have to learn how to live with the possibility of falling prey to demon control again. I have to live with it because when I fought Zaroc, there were a few moments where he'd won, where he'd gained control of me, and I know that can happen again. Just like me, they're going to have to learn to face that fear, and to work despite the fear."

"I think you should tell them that yourself." Dr. Pomona said with a smile. "Your story; it might do them a lot of good. All of them have a great deal of respect for you. According to Alec, once the procedure was begun, they were forced to sit and listen to the lessons being given to the other demon children. Their ‘teacher' was one of the green-skin demons, and their favorite topic seemed to be the perfidy of the Sinclair family, and how you were the most dangerous enemy of demon-kind. Apparently the demon that manages to kill you will be greatly rewarded."

"Well, isn't that nice?" Worthington said sarcastically as a shiver of fear made its way up and down his spine.

"Bart says he spent an entire week going to sleep and dreaming that you would one day come and kill them before they had to kill a human." Dr. Kuhn said in a quiet voice that haunted Worthington. "They dreamed of death as their only hope of escape. As they saw the features they were born with overwritten by what the demons conceived as being their ‘ideal' image, they felt their humanity and old life being forever ripped away from them. For a few days there, when they thought they might get their old faces back, their old hair color, their old eyes, they dreamed of possibly living a real life, but since we figured it will be impossible to do that, they have gone back to dreaming of death as their only release."

"I will… talk to them." Worthington said with a sigh. "Maybe I can convince them to try and live."

"Good, that will help," Pomona said. "One thing though, Worthington. Don't dismiss your… procedure out of hand. You might want to consider holding it out to them as a promise."

"I told you I wasn't going to…" Worthington snapped until she held out a hand.

"Not now, not for a few years at least." She continued. "Tell them if they still want the procedure when they're… say sixteen? Yes, if they still want it at sixteen, then you'll do it for them."

"I…" Worthington wanted to dismiss it out of hand, but he couldn't. "Fine, I'll do that, but I'm going to share more details of it with them so that they know just how bad it can be."

"That's your decision to make." Dr. Kuhn said in a gentle voice. "Thank you for meeting with us."

"You're welcome," Worthington said with a frown. "Tell Brandon when would be a good time, and he'll work it into my schedule."

"Thank you again, young man." Dr. Kuhn said as he stood. They shook hands before Worthington left the room and headed down the hallway to his office. Nick was waiting there, with two secretaries who were working even though it wasn't a normal workday.

"I've edited your report and sent it back you." Nick said as he entered, and Brandon left his side to go sit at a desk that was ‘his.' "Assistant Director Huntington called and wanted me to remind you that they will be expecting your recommendations on a training program for adult recruits with mage-power by the end of next week. Ms. Simons also called and wants some of your time tomorrow to discuss curriculum reviews with the state auditors, as well as her latest two staff acquisitions. She says it will take about two hours to review everything with you."

"C'mon in and let's get things over with," Worthington said with a frown. Both Nick and Brandon followed him since they worked as a team now to manage his schedule. Worthington sat behind his desk, frowning at the now-full inbox that he'd emptied out last night and began to discuss his schedule with the two of them. They talked for a half-hour, juggling several things around, including a private dinner that evening with Kyle, and when they were done, Worthington leaned back in his chair and sighed. "Okay, let Josh and the MR riders assigned for this weekend know that I'll be leaving early tomorrow."

"Will do." Nick smiled as he and Brandon stood up to leave. Worthington didn't complain anymore that he could rarely go anywhere anymore without an escort of some kind. Most of the MR gang had enthusiastically taken to weapons training being offered by some of the mercenary soldiers, and he was frightened to think how accurate many of them were getting with shooting left-handed while riding a motorcycle.

"Mr. Smythe is here." Nick buzzed over the intercom after he'd been gone for all of two minutes.

"Send him in." Worthington sighed. "Oh, and get me a cup of coffee please."

"On its way." Nick's voice sounded far too cheerful for a Saturday morning.

Meetings mostly took up the rest of his morning and afternoon. He even had a ‘working lunch' with Weatherby, Smolenz (the government mage in charge of recruiting efforts), and Dietz (who was now in charge of training new government mages). By late afternoon he was tired of meetings but made his way into the basement, where nearly a quarter of it was now blocked off by walls and armed guards.

It had taken the dwarves all of three days to build this section where they were now holding the four boys ‘recovered' in their operation. The quarter of the basement was now extremely secure and had several rooms for the boys, a large ‘play' room, as well as observation rooms, a small clinic, and conference rooms for the scientists and doctors that were working with them. Eight soldiers were on guard duty at all times, inside and out, as well as one of the more powerful government mages available.

All four boys seemed to prefer physical or mental type activities to video games or television, and so when Worthington entered their playroom a few minutes later, he found them in the middle of a game of twister. They didn't notice his entrance for a few minutes, and he watched them play until they collapsed in a heap, giggling at each other. When they did notice him, he had to brace himself as they all ran towards him.

"Worthington!" They all shouted with Alec Bryce, the most gregarious of them, and the blond that had spoken to him when he'd rescued them, jumping into his arms. The twelve-year-old was too big and heavy to hold up for long, but he did hug him, and the others, who half-dragged him into a sitting position on the floor, with all of them curled up in one position or another against him. It had been like this every time he'd visited them, and Dr. Kuhn had theorized that it was some type of leftover habit from their demon genetics.

They had learned much about demons already, and some of it had been surprising. For instance, demons were very sociable creatures with each other, and in their natural environment, enjoyed touching each other quite a bit. They didn't inter-mingle though, only reserving their ‘touching' for demons of equal caste, or authority figures.

Another thing they had learned was that demons, and these boys, didn't talk as much as even normal mages talked. With strangers, they would talk aloud, but with those they considered ‘close,' they preferred mental conversations, and as the four boys crowded around him, touching him gently, almost lovingly, they all opened their minds to him without hesitation. He was more guarded in his approach, shielding much of his mind, but letting them into the surface areas where they shared their fears with him.

This time he learned something else. They viewed him as a protector figure, not quite a parent, but more like an older brother who would watch out for them and keep them safe. It honored him, and worried him a bit, especially as he shared what he'd promised, giving them clear images of what he could do to them that would assuage their fears of being possessed by demons again, and to his dismay, they tried to demand he do it to them immediately.

It was nearly an hour later, an hour of silence except for their mental communications, and the little grunts they sometimes made, when the conversation ended. They had agreed to wait until they were sixteen, but only with the promise that Worthington would do everything in his power to keep them away from demons until then. Alec had even extracted another promise from him that he hoped he could keep.

"When can we meet Kyle?" The dark-haired Bart said aloud after Worthington had stood up and they were all standing around him with smiles on their faces.

"Yeah, we have to know if he's good enough for you," Alec added mischievously.

"I'm not sure." Worthington hesitated, wondering how they'd picked that out of his mind when he'd tried to block it from them. What else had they gotten?

"I'm sure he's good enough," Corky said with a grin.

"Yeah, if he's willing to put up with a slut like you," Johnny added, and Worthington play slapped him, only to find himself being tickled by Alec. That led to a four-against-one wrestling match that he barely won, and that was with him making a very real effort. All of them were quite strong and not afraid to use their strength to their advantage.

They were still laughing, and had gone back to their game of twister when he left, exhausted, bruised, but smiling. Dr. Kuhn was smiling as well and led him to the conference room where he recited their mental conversations for the doctors and their recorder that would make notes of everything. Then he was free to go and get ready for dinner, and he found that he was really looking forward to a real, quiet dinner alone with Kyle, and discussing nothing serious.

Yes, there were important things in life other than work.

Copyright © 2018 dkstories; All Rights Reserved.

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Chapter Comments

Brilliant chapter. If it is the end of the books then it certainly ended on a really good note. Although I certainly hope that there is another book in store. Thanks for posting it, it was interesting and intense at times but very, very good. Thanks again

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Thank you for this story.  I'd love to hear from these characters again or any new ones you might develop.

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I hope this isn't the end as it's just getting started with the battle with the demons. I hope that Worthington is able to keep the boys safe and away from the demons. I understand his reluctance to do the ritual on these boys because of their age of 12, also he's trying to get away from the dark side of being a mage. 

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Another great chapter, the author was truly talented. 

Myr, thank you so much for reposting this story.   I know that the author never finished the third book in the series, but I do hope you post what he did complete. 

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Excellent chapter! Worthington was able to come up with a plan to rescue the boys. His reluctance to put the boys through the torture and sexual abuse necessary to create the controls needed to protect them from the Demons shows how far he’s come from who he was when he arrived in Arizona. He has matured into a better, wiser and more caring person. I’m very sad to see the comments about the story ending. There’s so much more that could be written about this group of characters and the war they’re fighting! 😢❤️

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On 6/2/2019 at 1:12 AM, centexhairysub said:

I know that the author never finished the third book in the series, but I do hope you post what he did complete. 

I will be... with lots and lots and lots of warnings that it won't be completed.

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