Jake was still holding Akeesha each of his Jinns gathered around them both. Nothing but the sound of great weeping and sobbing could be heard within the room. There was another huge rush of energy as Nyrae and Inger both appeared. Inger flew to Akeesha tears starting to fall from her eyes.
"Why? Why is she dying? If she dies Master Jake I promise you that I will make you suffer!" Inger was growling out at Jake.
"I am going to die soon one way or another Inger. The bond I have with my Jinns will kill me when she dies. I am afraid it will kill them also. I just wish that Sheeka wasn't hurt so badly." Jake stated fresh tears falling from his eyes.
All 3 of his Jinns were suddenly looking at the doorway with shocked looks. "Master Jake?" Gen started.
"I know; I am sorry Gen and the rest of you. I have been such an unworthy master to all of you. I more than deserve the slow death I know that is coming." Jake said unable to see, the thought of them dying because of him, made him wish that when he died they would remain alive.
There was a gong sound then a titanic sounding fanfare. The Jinn council appeared; shock apparent on all their faces. The wish that Master Jake had made was unheard of. Then Rasmir smiled another part of the legend was coming to pass. This show of unconditional love for all four of his Jinns, plus the fact that he was willing to die so they could live was.
Jake heard the council gasp and stood walking to them. "Great council of the Jinns." Jake started. "I humble myself before you that you please help my Jinns to live when I die. I love them all and the death of one is too much."
Jake fell to the floor awaiting the death blow he knew was coming. Suddenly the room got quiet, well Jake thought this is it.
Suddenly a low and quiet voice wafted over his ears, "My dear, dear loving Master. I am not dead my love."
Looking up, Jake saw Sheeka bathed in a golden light, his mouth hanging open he could only stare. Finally finding his voice Jake could hardly get the words out. "I... I saw you fall, I held you, felt your heart stop as did your breathing. I am confused, happy yes, but very confused."
"Perhaps I can help you father." Came a voice from the air. "The wisdom and courage that you have shown along with the unconditional love. These things that you have for mother and the others. I now know as do the others love, YOUR love is a magic far more powerful than anything those evil ones could produce. Mother will be fine soon but you and they have much to do before all of us are born."
Jake watched as Sheeka smiled and lovingly touched her stomach. Just as suddenly as it started Sheeka was asleep laying down on the couch near her sister.
Jake was still in shock he couldn't say a word even if he wanted to, a crooked smile on his lips. ‘Wisdom and courage? Him? Hell and here I thought I was a coward,’ Jake thought drawing a gasp from Gen.
"Master Jake! You dear Master are no coward! You went to Sheeka even when the deadly trio was about to destroy you. You care more for us than you do for yourself. You are the kindest and gentlest master the world has ever seen. I am sorry Master but you are far from a coward!" Gen said with her arms crossed, a look of anger in her eyes.
Jake was shocked for a moment, he was just now starting to get used to praise. The words that Gen had spoken were taking quite a bit to sink in. He didn't feel like any type of hero, he had just done what he thought was right. Besides he still was to blame for Sheeka getting hurt.
"I will acknowledge that I am no coward but I am still to blame for her getting hurt. I promised all of you that I would protect you as much as possible. That means not putting you in the position of being able to get hurt I..." Jake was saying when he was interrupted again.
"All this as you say is true father, though we both know that any of these four would also lay down their lives for you. Father, just accept the fact that your love for each other is far more powerful than anything they can send at you. I must go father, be well I will see you soon." With that the voice was gone Jake sitting there staring at all four of his Jinns.
‘Damn,’ Jake thought, ‘I wish Akeesha had heard all of that, that way she might not want to kill me when she awoke.’ There was a groaning from the couch then Akeesha's eyes opened. Shakily she got to her feet and walked to Jake.
"I did hear all that was said. I still warn you Master Jake protect her or I will die ending your life!" Again she drew back to slap him only to fall forward into Jake's arms.
Looking over at Inger Jake said, "Inger help me get her to the couch, I am afraid she is weak and needs to rest. Are you allowed to stay and watch over her?"
Inger's eyes flew wide as she helped Jake get her to the couch. Just who was this human male who cared more for Jinns than his own life?
"Yes I am Master Jake. I always listen for my mistress's voice. Master Jake, may I ask a question?" Inger tentatively asked of Jake. When he only nodded she continued. "I noticed that you didn't defend yourself against Akeesha. May I ask why?"
Jake took a deep sigh then opened his mouth, "What she said was true, I did promise to protect them all. I feel I failed in that respect. It was well within her right to punish me. Besides I told her to take her anger out on me. I felt I more than deserved it."
Inger eyes were even wider at his words. A male who actually accepted responsibility for his actions? Shaking her head she thought she needed to study this man more. If all he said was true than he truly was a rare male in the world.
Jake walked over to Trully who was again examining Sheeka, a wide smile on her face. "Will she be alright Trully? I was so scared when I saw her start to fall. I thought I had lost her and the baby, all I could think was why? Her child is far more important than I am, as is she." This last part Jake said almost in a whisper.
"Yes Master Jake she is fine, as is the child she carries. Master Jake I have a question for you, please answer truthfully." Jake nodded at Trully. "You say that you love all your Jinns as you have proven time and again."
Again Jake nodded staring at Trully a little confused. "Of course I love all of them how could I not? They are the kindest sweetest women I have ever met."
"Ok, then answer me this. Isn't it quite possible that they could also love you to the point that you are everything to them?" Trully said her smile growing when she saw a sudden light appear in Jake's eyes.
"I thought they felt compelled... to act as they do... but they never... how could I?" Jake stuttered out feeling even more confused than before.
Trully just shook her head, "Master Jake for one as wise and courageous as you are, you really know nothing of love do you?"
Jake hung his head his face red as he blushed, how sweet Trully thought he really is blushing! Looking over at the still present Jinn council Trully nodded at all of them. Suddenly they all were also smiling widely.
Patting his arm softly Trully whispered to him, "It's alright Master Jake, we all have to learn at one time or another. The same is also true for Jinns; we are a lot like humans as we also have to learn love. Don't worry; you learn more as you go." With that Trully walked to the council leaving a red faced and almost completely confused Jake in her wake.
Jake watched as Trully talked to the council a few minutes then turned bowed to him and was gone. The entire council all had startled looks on their faces. Jake shook his head to clear it and walked over to Rasmir.
"Rasmir I am afraid that we may need a different strategy. I can't risk their lives like this anymore. I am not as concerned for me as much as I am about them. Sheeka is going to be a mother soon, I cannot, WILL NOT put her in danger like that anymore." Jake told the older man.
"Master Jake as I am sure my sister told you, they love you far too much to NOT get involved." Smiling widely Rasmir added, "I am also sure that you have noticed that you and they are almost untouchable. From what I saw it took an extremely powerful amount of magic to try and hurt Sheeka. That type of magic is almost unknown to all but a few." Rasmir placed an arm around Jake to steady the still confused man. "You are a very lucky man Master Jake, to know the equal love of four Jinns and to return that love as fiercely as you do."
Jake could only nod his head this was a little much for him even with all he'd seen already.
Thousands of miles away, Nuha was struggling to survive, barely clinging to life. The pain was far beyond anything she'd ever felt. Fatin and Abla were doing their best to keep Nuha alive but they felt they were losing the fight. Suddenly Fatin became angry, how dare that asshole of a human male hurt her treasured sister! Abla had to back away as the increasing power of her sister was actually starting to push her back.
Abla's eyes grew wide as she watched Fatin's power increase and as Nuha was finally starting to breathe better. Screaming Fatin said, "I'll kill him! I'll kill him! No one hurts my sister, my family! NO ONE!"
Nuha was finally starting to be recognizable as the massive amount of power flowed from Fatin to her. Finally an hour later Fatin collapsed on the floor at the feet of Nuha who arose and caressed her sister's face. "Don't worry my dear sister." Nuha told Fatin's still form. "We will exact a most horrific revenge upon this man and his... pets!"
Abla gasp as Nuha stood naked in front of her. "Sister the mark upon your back!"
Nuha rushed to a mirror and stared at the lightening shaped mark all the way down her back. "Ha! A small price to pay for all that I have gained!" Nuha laughed evilly as sparks erupted from her fingertips. "Yes a small price indeed. That idiot has provided me the power to finally extinguish his pitiful existence!" With that Nuha released a bolt of lightning at the nearest wall effectively blowing a hole in it.
Abla smiled this was it seemed, a melding of the ancient power and the natural power of a storm. The Ever Last Master didn't stand a chance!
Jake awoke that night having fallen asleep on the floor near both Akeesha and Sheeka. Though his mind was filled with terrible dreams, Jake still managed to get a little sleep. Looking over at the couch he could see that Akeesha was awake drinking from a cup that Inger was holding for her. Trying to not make a sound Jake turned his eyes toward Sheeka. A moment later her eyes also opened, Jake arose and hurriedly got her something to drink.
Sheeka awoke confused, where in the world was she? This was Master Jake's abode but... then she saw her sister and Inger. A moment later Jake appeared with a cup for her, oh by the great Jinn that water was so good! In a very horse voice she told Jake, "Thank you master but you do not have to do this I am..."
"No, this is nothing to repay you, though I do have an idea that I hope you don't find too much?" Jake told a now very confused Sheeka, an idea? What was master talking about? Drinking her fill she thanked Jake then laid back down falling asleep almost immediately.
Jake smiled he hoped that she was strong enough to take what he had in mind. Then again Jake thought as his face twisted up in a moment of concentration, he hoped that he could also.
The next morning Jake called all his Jinns into the as he called it common room. Also calling the council and Juno, Jake thought he had enough to witness this. He'd already contacted Trully to find out if Sheeka was strong enough to withstand what he had in mind. Trully assured him that she was far stronger than she appeared.
"Thank you all for coming here today, what has happened over the last week or so has me thinking. Sheeka has done many brave and honorable things for me; at first I thought it was just her trying to trick me. I then found that she, as well as I, have developed feelings for each other." Jake walked to a small alcove set in the wall in it were two bottles, Sheeka's and Rosalinda's.
Gen, Rosalinda and finally Rashala all smiled hugely. They could see what their master was about to do, they wholeheartedly agreed with his decision. Sheeka could only stare had she done something wrong? Akeesha was also glaring at Jake though as she had discovered the man was full of surprises.
"I have decided that you have done far more for me than I can for you." Jake said as Sheeka bowed her head, she loved her master enough to endure the pain that being in her bottle would produce. Once there she would think of all that she had done wrong and correct them when he let her out again. With tears in her eyes she awaited his words of imprisonment.
"I find that I cannot live with the constant fear of your bottle hanging over you. I cannot live with that same fear hanging over our first child. I therefore before all those present, I wish for you to no longer be a slave to that bottle and be free to love and live!" Jake told her.
Like Rashala before her, Sheeka almost didn't hear Jake, then with a shock she FELT the words. "I will... you... release me?" A wide, happy smile lit up her face, "I hear and obey my Master, it is as you wish!"
There was a deafening boom then another gong sound, Sheeka's bottle started to shake and vibrate then exploded and was gone. Sheeka arose and threw herself into Jake's arms kissing him passionately. "Thank you dear Master," she whispered in his ear. On the other side of the room Rosalinda sighed one day she too would be free. She knew she had to prove still that she was no longer evil, though just having the chance to be near Jake was almost reward enough.
A shadowy figure had watched much of what had gone on, so they thought, Dreama was still a slave to her bottle. Bah! This new name of hers was garbage! Soon the figure thought, Dreama would be free of that selfish human. They would make sure of it that was for sure!