Deidre's Death (Day Two - Chapter Four, page 2 of 7)

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A knock at her door drew her attention from her thoughts. She waited. If it was Gabriel, he'd made it clear he'd walk in. When no one did, she crossed to the door and opened it, startled by who stood before.

"Andre!" she exclaimed.

The Immortal offered a polite smile. Deidre recalled dealing with him many times before without remembering exactly what they'd discussed. The only calm, civilized Immortal on the Council That Was Seven, she had sought him out rather than try to reason with the irrational leaders of the Council.

"I brought you breakfast," he said. His French accent rolled off his deep voice in a way that made her smile.

She realized he was holding a tray of food. Deidre opened her door to him and closed it behind him.

"Gabriel raised you?" she asked curiously.

"He did a few days ago."

"My Gabriel. Breaking all the rules." She was proud of him. He used to frown at her when she acted outside the Immortal Laws, unable to appreciate that a deity charged with managing a domain often had to take steps outside the rules to protect one's underworld.

He had no idea how many rules she broke in her time as Death. That he understood now how he needed to break rules from time-to-time to preserve his domain was gratifying after years of him judging her for it.

"Becoming a deity makes one different, I am certain," Andre said. He set down the tray on the small table near the blazing hearth and sat. "Come. Sit with me." He poured them both tea.

Until that moment, she thought him there to visit. Deidre crossed her arms as she went to the other chair before the hearth. The air around her felt heavier as she sat. She shook her head, her body relaxing involuntarily. In the distance, an alarm sounded.

Andre was a mind reader.

The warning instinct faded, leaving her pleased to see him again. Deidre accepted her tea.

"He's learning what it means to be a deity," she said. "Why did he bring you back?"

"To help him track demons."

"Ah, of course." She reached forward for a croissant and bit into it, almost groaning at the buttery, flaky, airy bread. "This is heavenly!" she exclaimed when she'd swallowed her first bite. "I can't get over how incredible the human world is. The colors, the food. Why did no one tell me there was so much pleasure?"

"Deities view the world differently?"

"Very," she said emphatically. "It's … grey. The colors are faded, the flavors nonexistent. When you touch someone, you feel nothing, not the warmth of their skin or the smoothness." She dwelled on Gabriel's touch, lost momentarily.

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