She had been riding without food or water for two days. Maia knew that the boys from a few days ago were following her, and she knew why. She also knew that they thought she would be weak when they met again from her lack of proper nutrition. Ah, silly, silly boys.

She could hear their thoughts, and she almost laughed out loud when she heard Merek trying to block her out by thinking repeatedly: brick wall, brick wall, brick wall…

The ball was in her court, she was holding all the cards. They thought that since they knew her name, they had an advantage. Stupid. She herself had started the rumor that she could only read your mind if she knew your name, and that if you knew hers, you were safe.

Maia was no ordinary girl, and hers was no ordinary world. Distantly descended from the Greek God Eris, Lady of Discord, her diluted blood did not grant her immortality, but certain unique gifts. Many people of her time believed that she was a servant of the devil. The thought made her laugh. Little did they know that there was no devil but that which people make for themselves.

She was on a mission: get home. Such a simple task it seemed, but she had no idea where she was going, the last time she had been home, she had still been unable to talk.

The gods kept sending things down, stopping her from getting to where she wanted to go. But they had given her a gift by making her run into that boy back there, for, lo and behold, he was in possession of the map to take her home.

Oh, she knew what they thought, they thought that they had given the devil a map to a paradise beyond belief that had yet to be tainted by his wickedness. Oh, no! Don't let the poor little greek looking girl get the big bad map! The horrors of what an eighteen-year-old girl could do were unimaginable!

She knew that Merek and his little friends would catch up soon, she had been riding quite slowing for a while, actually.

"Get her!" All of a sudden, Maia allowed herself to be pulled from her horse and into a pair of very strong arms that held her tightly so that she couldn't escape. She watched as the blond guy looked through her bags for the map. Nope, they wouldn't find it there. She stopped focusing on what the others were doing and looked up to see the short-haired brother was the one holding her. She flipped herself around in his arms and pressed herself against him sexually. She heard his sharp intake of breath and smirked inwardly, looking up at him through her dark lashes. She licked her lips slowly, watching his eyes as they followed the path of her tongue. This boy was too easy. She reached up as though to put her arms around his neck and whispered into his ear huskily.

"Consider yourself taken under by the devil." Then she grabbed him by the ear and pulled him down, putting her dagger to his neck.

"Alright, pretty boy!" She yelled at the blond guy. "Stop feeling up my horse and listen or Will here feel the sharp edge of my blade!" They gasped as she used his name and she rolled her eyes. "Yes, yes, I know his name, in fact, I know everybody's names. Isn't that funny? You're under my influence now."

She looked around at them. Merek took a small step forward. "Ah, ah, ah! I wouldn't do that if I were you."

"You think I care more about him than saving the holy land from the devil? Go ahead, kill him, I don't care."

She knew he was bluffing, but she didn't really want to kill anybody else in this lifetime, so she just projected the image of her killing Will into their minds.

She examined each of their reactions thoughtfully. Nick broke down and started to cry uncontrollably. Liam stared at her, his face blank, tears building up in his eyes. She turned to Merek, who had been holding Brandon this whole time, last. He shook with uncontrollable rage. Will looked up at her.

"Why are they all so upset, you haven't done anything." She looked down at him, her face emotionless.

"They don't know that."

"You're a monster. You're a crime against god!" Merek said calmly, still shaking.

Maia let go of Will, but put him into a state of shock so he couldn't move. She walked up and whispered into Merek's ear. "I'm worse, aren't I?" She asked him seriously.

Laughing a bitter laugh, she yelled out, "I'm not his servant, am I? I am the Devil! I was born in the pits of Hell and thrown out into this world by my demon father to make your lives miserable, wasn't I!" In truth, her father was a farmer down two countries over who didn't like to hurt people, he liked to tend to his chickens, but they didn't need to know that.

He punched her.

She punched him.

He slapped her.

She laughed.

He blushed.

She laughed harder. Come on, how often do you see a six-foot something guy who looks like he just came out of a thug tavern blush?

"Did you just slap me?" She managed to ask between boughts of laughter.

Damn demon.

She immediately sobered up, hearing this thought from him.

"I'm surprised, Merek. I thought I was more than a mere demon. I thought we had agreed that I was the devil himself." She scowled at him.

"You just killed a man. You just killed my friend."

"I thought you said that you didn't care?" Maia asked, smiling up at him.

"Monster!" She frowned, that didn't come from Merek. Nope, that had most definitely been Liam's voice.

"Oh, shut up. Like you've never killed anyone before." She turned to face him.

"Not in cold blood!" He snarled back.

"Merek dearest told me to, almost dared me to. I didn't see either of you make a brave attempt to stop me, either." I walked back to the still much alive Will. It was almost funny, they were getting all mad at me for killing someone who was still alive and sitting only a few feet away from them, looking very puzzled indeed.

"Why do they keep talking like I'm dead?" He asked.

I projected an image into their minds. They think I killed you. It was funny at first, but it's getting rather dull.

"Oh." Will looked rather upset at the prospect of being thought to be dead.

"Look you bumbling baffoons!" Maia yelled out to the three mourning men. They looked up at her, pure hate in their eyes. "Aw, don't look at me like that. He's not dead, you morons." This happened to confuse them. Yes, they looked very confused indeed.

"What do you mean?" That was Nick. He looked so hopeful all of a sudden.

"I mean I didn't kill him." She sighed, getting rid of the image in their minds. "Now, I got to go, as much as it pains me, I'm sure I'll be seeing you later."



"Guys! Calm down! I'm fine. She's gone… Damn it! She still has the map!" Will rubbed a tired hand over his eyes.

"Calm down? Calm down! I thought you were dead, for Christ's sake!" Nick yelled, going into hysterics.

"I'm not dead, Nick! We need to forget this incident happened and focus on getting the map back from Maia." Will turned to Merek. "Speaking of Maia, how could she still get into our minds if we knew her name? Shouldn't we be immune?"

"One would think…" Merek turned in the direction that Maia had rode off in. "We won't know unless we ask her and we won't be able to ask her until we find her. Mount up, guys, it's going to be a long ride."

"Hey, Merek?" Liam spoke up for the first time since bitching out at Maia.


"Where's Brandon?"

Merek looked around, swore, and galloped off after Maia.