Charmed: The New Power Of Three
By Julien Gregg
Chapter Eleven:
To Hell And Back

The house was quiet as Dean and Damon sat down to have coffee at the breakfast bar in the kitchen. David and Drake were both still sleeping, and Dax had left earlier for what he said was a job hunt. Dean couldn't think of why Dax would need a job, but he supposed that he didn't want to be "taken care of" by the charmed ones.

Drake had been moody since Aaron had left, and Dean was trying to give him all of the space he needed while at the same time being there for him when he needed to talk. It was a difficult balance, and it was taking its toll on Dean. He understood that his youngest cousin was heartbroken, and it hurt to see him in so much pain.

Now he and Damon were discussing Adam's move to Storyville. Damon wasn't completely happy to have his father living down the street, and Dean couldn't really blame him. He'd been not so subtle in his attempt to talk Damon into moving in with him and leaving the manor.

"He never actually comes out and says that he doesn't want me to be a witch now, but I know that's what's on his mind," said Damon. "Asking me to move in with him is just one step in his plan to convince me to give up my powers."

"Well you know we'll never kick you out," reassured Dean. "After all you own a third of the house."

"I know you guys wouldn't kick me out," sighed Damon. "I just wish my father wouldn't try so hard to undermine my destiny."

"That can't be the only reason he wanted to move to Storyville," said Dean. "He did say that he wanted to live near you, Damon."

"Yeah," sighed Damon, thinking that it had been nice to hear his father tell him that he loved him even if he didn't say it in those words exactly. "I found a box of pictures of my mother in his stuff when I helped him move in to the apartment."

"I thought you said he threw out all of the pictures of your mother," replied Dean.

"I thought he had," admitted Damon. "I guess I was wrong."

"Look," said Dean. "The way I see it if he married your mother, knowing that she was a witch, that means he accepted her for who and what she was. He'll come around."

* * *

David sat up slowly and looked around the room he was in. For a moment it was as if twenty years hadn't passed and he was laying on the sofa in Jase's room. Then it came back to him. He and Dean were up late talking, and Dean had invited him to sleep on the sofa in his room. Jase's room now belonged to his only son. Twenty years had gone by and now David was actually contemplating a relationship with Jase Halliwell's son, Dean. He scrubbed his fingers through his brown hair as he thought about it. When he looked up, a white lighter was orbing into the room. The blue glittery light intensified until it formed the shape of a man that turned out to be Steven.

Steve was one David's white lighter. He still looked exactly as he had the day that David had last seen him twenty years ago. His long blond hair was just as full as before, and his piercing blue eyes still captivated David. Not like before, though. Now it was a pair of brown eyes that held his attention and made his heart beat faster.

"Steven," he said after the two had looked at each other for a few moments in silence. "I didn't expect to ever see you again."

"I am your white lighter," replied Steven, sitting down next to David on the sofa. "The Elders just reassigned me to you. It took them a while to actually believe that you were alive."

"I suppose being cursed into Eliza's Book of Shadows made it impossible for them to sense that I was alive," David said without even the slightest sting in his voice.

"I tried everything I could think of to free you from the book, David," Steven said quickly. "I even came back when the Elders assigned me to other charges. I just couldn't break the curse."

"Relax, Steven," sighed David. "I'm not blaming anyone. What was done to me made it possible for me to find the love of my life."

He looked down at his folded hands in his lap as he said those words. He'd finally said it out loud. He was in love with Dean Halliwell. He smiled as the realization dawned on him that he was actually in love and not just thinking he was because of what Sebastian had told him about the future. He really was in love with Dean.

"The Elders said this would happen," breathed Steven. "They said that you would fall in love with Dean, and that the two of you would get married eventually."

"I am in love with Dean," said David. "I didn't realize it until this morning, but I really am in love with him."

Steven thought about what David was telling him, and it broke his heart to hear him say that he loved Dean. In the twenty years that David had been cursed into that book, Steven had never given up hope that he would be freed and that they would once again be together. They had been happy before he'd been cursed. Now he was telling him that it was over between them when, for David, their love couldn't have seemed to have been more than months ago.

"David, I never stopped loving you," Steven said finally. "I want you to know that."

* * *

"Aaron," Drake said softly, looking up at his ceiling. "I know you can hear me. Please come back. We'll find a way to be together. I don't know about you, but I believe that you are a part of my destiny, Aaron."

He closed his eyes and rolled onto his side as he wept. He didn't understand why the guardians wanted to punish them like this. Drake had done everything he was supposed to do. He'd vanquished demons with his cousins, he'd tried to help save Sebastian they'd even broken a curse that had lasted twenty years. Why then were they denying him love?

He knew that loving Aaron wouldn't distract him from fighting evil. Worrying about Dax hadn't distracted him. He'd managed to strip the demon from his brother with the help of his cousins, nephew and mother. Didn't that count for something? Why couldn't he and Aaron be allowed to have their relationship? It was agony to think of life without Aaron, knowing that he wasn't dead.

"They never should have allowed me to show myself to you when Sebastian was cursed," said Aaron's voice, startling Drake. He rolled onto his back, and hope filled him. Aaron was sitting on the edge of the bed next to him. "I didn't remember anything until I saw your eyes, Drake. I know this is hard for you. Believe me, its hard for me, too. I wish there was a way for us to be together, but there isn't."

"Aaron, we have to find a way," he moaned, sitting up and launching himself into Aaron's arms. "There has to be something we can do to convince the guardians to let us be together."

"I've tried," replied Aaron, holding him tight. "I told them that I would even give up being a guardian to be with you, but that only made them angry. Drake, they are set against us being together. I don't understand why exactly. I've already been reassigned. I'm not your guardian anymore."

"This isn't fair," sobbed Drake. "How do they expect us to do anything for them if they make us hate them?"

"Don't say that," warned Aaron. "They're probably listening right now."

"I don't care," he cried, pushing himself away from Aaron. "What could they possibly do to me that's worse than what they've already done? How can anything they do be worse than taking the man I love with my entire soul away from me? I don't care one tiny bit if they're listening to me, Aaron. I hate them for doing this, and I won't do one single thing if I know it was directly inspired by the Guardians of Destiny."

"Drake . . ."

"No," he said, cutting Aaron off. "Do they get some kind of thrill out of playing with people's emotions like this? Do they think that this will endear me to them or something? Aaron, they have to know that tearing my heart apart like this will only make me hate them. It will distract me every time I try to fight against anything evil. I'll always be thinking about what they did to me. Always."

"Drake, I . . ." Aaron stopped and gasped as a blinding white light enveloped him. He twisted his body, trying to hold on to Drake, but he was orbed out of the manor.

Drake screamed in horror as he watched his lover be forcefully orbed away from him. Shock and anger battled within him as he stared at the spot where Aaron had been sitting. They'd gone too far.

* * *

"Was that Drake?" Dean asked, getting off the stool in the kitchen and looking at the ceiling.

Before Damon could answer, two demons appeared behind Dean. He tries to warn Dean, but before he can even raise his hands to freeze the demons, two more grab him from behind. The bright red demon that had attacked them before, Ronan, threw an energy ball at Dean just before the other two shimmered Damon out of the manor.

"Jason!" cried Dean as the other two demons shimmered out. He barely had breath in him to call for his white lighter. They'd taken Damon, and Dean was scared.

"What happened?" Jason gasped as he orbed into the kitchen. He took one look at Dean and was on his knees beside him. He healed the wound in his neck and back. "Where are your cousins?"

"Demons took Damon," replied Dean. "Drake is upstairs. We didn't see them in time, Jason. They attacked us so quickly."

"Oh my God, Dean what happened?" David cried, coming into the kitchen with Steven right behind him. He was instantly on his knees with his arms wrapped around Dean, almost shoving Jason out of his way.

"They took Damon," repeated Dean. "We have to go save Damon."

"They just took . . ." Drake stopped as he started to come into the kitchen. Dean was on the floor in David's arms, Jason was looking at them worriedly, and Steven was back again. He wondered why Steven was there, but the sight of Jason kneeling next to David and Dean worried him. Where was Damon?

"Drake," said Jason as soon as he looked up. "Demons attacked. I healed Dean, but they took Damon."

"Took him?" Drake asked, shaking his head. "Where?"

"We have to go save him, Drake," said Dean. "We have to."

"We will," Drake said automatically. He was so shocked with everything that had happened. He didn't know what to do next.

"You'll help us, won't you, David?" Dean asked.

"Of course I will," replied David, holding him tighter.

"I don't think its a good idea for you to go rushing off to the underworld, David," said Steven. "You've only been out of the book . . ."

"Damon Halliwell helped to lift the damned curse, Steven," David said coldly. "He's in danger now, and I will do everything in my power to bring him back to the manor safely."

But just as he said those words, Ronan and a warlock they all knew shimmered into the kitchen, throwing energy balls and fireballs as they appeared. Lothos threw fire balls at Drake while Ronan threw energy balls at Dean. Drake caught one of the fire balls that Lothos threw and pitched it back at him. The scene was surreal as David watched. He was so shocked by what was happening that he couldn't move.

Then before he even knew it was happening, Dax shimmered into the kitchen. He roared in anger as he witnessed Lothos trying to kill his brother. He opened his hands and spread his arms. Fire shot from his hands at Lothos, but he shimmered out just before it reached him. The fire scorched the wall behind where he'd been standing.

"The demon, Dax," taunted Ronan, throwing an energy ball at Dax. "You dare to stand in the way of The Kin?"

"Something you never knew about me, Ronan," said Dax as he held twin balls of fire in his hands. "I'm a firestarter." He threw the balls of fire at Ronan.

As the others watched, Ronan shimmered out. Dax shimmered out seconds later. They each looked at each other in confusion. Drake knew that Dax could shimmer, but Dean and David had only just witnessed it. Ronan had called him a demon. Could he not know that they'd vanquished his demonic half?

* * *

"Come to play in the demon pit?" taunted Ronan as he and Dax shimmered into the center of the cavern of The Kin. "Come on then. Let's play."

He balled an energy ball in his hand and tossed it at Dax. Dax caught it and threw it back, morphing into his demonic self as he did so and loosing an energy ball of his own. Ronan hissed at him as he dodged the energy balls. He was not so prepared when Dax let loose a wall of fire between them.

"You will give me back my brother's cousin, Ronan," said Dax. "I won't ask again."

"Asking was it?" Ronan scoffed. "Sounded much like an order to me. Dax, you can't fight demons when you are a demon. Drop this charade and join us again. We can kill the charmed ones now that Ash is back."

"I wouldn't join you again if my soul depended on it, Ronan," spat Dax. "I want Damon. Now."

* * *

Drake, Dean, David and the white lighters were in the attic. Dean held a crystal suspended by a length of black cord over a map of Storyville and the surrounding area. The crystal swayed from side to side as he moved it over the map. So far, scrying for Damon wasn't yielding any results.

"This isn't working," sighed Dean. "There has to be another way to find him."

"I can't sense him," said Jason. "That can only mean one thing."

"He's in the underworld," said Drake. "I can take us there to get him."

Dean looked at his younger cousin for a moment as he thought about it. It was a trap. He felt it in his bones. If they shimmered into the underworld, they'd be ambushed, and Damon would likely die. There had to be something that they could do to even the odds once they were there, though. There had to be something.

"It's a trap," said David as if he head read Dean's thoughts. "It would be suicide to walk into a trap unprepared."

"Well I'll be ready with lightning," said Drake. "We need Damon."

"I have a trick of my own," said David, and the cousins gasped as he disappeared. He reappeared right next to Dean. "It comes in handy."

"Why didn't you tell us you could do that?" gasped Drake, smiling from ear to ear. "That's perfect!"

"Well I don't know about perfect," said David. "I can only make myself invisible. It doesn't work on others."

"But you'll be able to surprise them," said Dean. He was smiling, too.

"Well then I guess we're going after Damon," said David as Drake walked over and took both his hand and Dean's. Before either of the white lighters could protest, he shimmered them all to the cavern of The Kin.

Energy balls flew at them from every direction, but Dean was ready. He waved his hand and all of them flew in every other direction. Drake held up his hands and let lightning pulse through them at every demon he saw. He was determined not to use any demonic powers. He didn't want Dean to be confused as to who was throwing what.

David took his change and became invisible. He walked around the edge of the cavern, being careful not to walk into any of the demons. Damon was tied to the wall on the other side of all of the demons. They hadn't seen him when they shimmered in, because they were blocking him. They were standing between the witches and Damon to keep him bound.

David untied Damon's hands as he let go of his invisibility. Raken was waiting for him to reappear near Damon, however. He threw an energy ball at David's back. Luckily, Damon's hands were free already. He froze the energy ball as two more demons shimmered into the center of the cavern. Damon gasped as he realized that one of them was Dax. He was even more terrified to see that one of the demons entering the cavern was Ash.

Drake and Dean stared at Dax as Ash threw energy balls at them. If it hadn't been for Damon freezing them, they'd have been killed. They couldn't believe what they were seeing. Dax was a demon again. Anger and confusion warred within Drake as he stared at his demon brother.

"Go!" cried Dax as he let loose a wall of fire between the demons and the others. David and Damon had just made it where Drake and Dean were standing when the wall of fire was erected. "Now!"

Drake took hold of Dean and Damon's hands while Dean held David's. He shimmered them back to the manor.

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