Again she trudged across a blasted landscape drenched in an eerie violet glow, with the horizon lost in shimmering mist. This time, though, she glimpsed a structure ahead, a ghostly outline in the fog.
The chapel she hadn't seen in five years, where the Windwalker had used Nathan's body to ravish hers. Lightning flashed around it. Wind roared in her ears and reverberated inside her skull. It bore the sounds of a tongue not spoken in the human world, the language of creatures from beyond the material universe. The gale swept her across the rocky plain. Instantly she found herself at the door to the chapel.
But it wasn't the same building she remembered. It transmuted into a cyclopean temple of stone blocks each taller than her house, its distant roof veiled by lightning-laced clouds. Arcane symbols that made her vision blur adorned the portal.
A silent voice spoke inside her brain, or perhaps she mentally translated its message into words she could understand: "My servant comes for the child. Surrender him."
The wind whipped around her, penetrating her vitals with a sword of ice. "Yield my son to me, and you will not be harmed."
"Get out of my head! And stay out!" She slammed, locked, chained, and bolted the gates of her mind.
The next moment, she woke in her bedroom. Thunder crashed, followed seconds later by lightning. Rain drummed on the roof. Her heart hammering in time with it, she flung off the covers and rushed into Daniel's room.
The curtains flapped in the wind from his open window. I know I closed that at bedtime. As she shut the window, he stirred and murmured, "Mommy?"
"It's okay, go back to sleep."
He said in a voice slurred with drowsiness, "My wind dragon daddy was here."
She straightened his tangled sheets. "No, you were just dreaming."
So was I. She couldn't accept the alternative, that the Windwalker had invaded her sleeping mind.