I shrugged. “That’s my best guess. Although nothing is certain. If I can find a way to stop it, then he could be back to normal in no time.” That was a long shot, but I had hope. I cleared my throat. “Thank you. I’m sorry I used you, but—”
She sliced her hand through the air to cut me off. “Don’t even. God. Whatever you did boosted my power to like the umpteenth degree. I never felt so strong or so fast before.”
I nodded. It had cost me a good dose of energy that I didn’t have to give, but if it had stopped Daniel from killing my brother, then it was worth it. At least now I had a shot at figuring out how to save him. Undoing some nasty magic was far better than trying to fix a ripped out throat. That was impossible to fix.
Thank goodness Teresa wasn’t angry. “Well, I’m sorry I didn’t ask your permission.”
“It’s fine. But now I know why Luciana wants you back so badly.”
I sighed. “Yeah.” Would I go back? If she promised to save Raphael, I wouldn’t have a choice.
“I know what those girls said, but take it from me. Trusting Luciana isn’t a good idea. No matter what she promises.”
“But if she can save Raphael…” I reached out, cradling his hand in both of mine. “I don’t know that I could risk his life.”
A cell phone rang, and I recognized Raphael’s ringtone. That was his phone.
“That’s why I came down here. Not just to check on you, but Raphael dropped his phone in the quad and it keeps ringing.” She pulled his small flip phone from her pocket and handed it over. “It says Matt.”
I groaned. He was probably the last person I wanted to deal with right now.
“Is that the douchebag?”
I laughed. “Yeah. That’s the douchebag.”
“Why is he calling your brother?”
“Probably because I don’t have a cell phone.”
“You don’t have a cell phone?”
I took the phone from her and it stopped ringing. Saved by the bell. “You remember the amazing cell reception at the compound.”
“Right. I wasn’t thinking. Of course. Why would you have a cell if you couldn’t use it?”
“Exactly.” I held up the phone. “But this is Raphael’s. He left the compound every day for work so it made sense for him to get one. Clients needed to get in contact with him. But Luciana never let me out of her sight.”
The phone started ringing again. I didn’t bother reading the caller I.D.
“You going to answer that?”
I didn’t want to. Not eve a little. “If he calls again, I’ll pick it up.”
She grinned. “Makes sense.” She motioned back to my brother’s sleeping form. “So how do we help him?”
I leaned back in the chair. “I have no idea. That kind of black magic is so far out of my knowledge base. I’m hoping that the demon didn’t fully infect him, but I won’t know until he wakes up, and I’m not waking him up. Not yet.” I chewed on my lip. “Is Muraco back by any chance?”
She shook her head. “He’s not expected back until the afternoon. Why? What are you thinking?”
“Honestly, I don’t know what I’m thinking. But if Raphael needs white magic to fix him—and I have a feeling that’s what he might need—then I’m going to have to go to Peru.”
“All signs are pointing that way. You can break your oath there. You can fix Raphael there. And you can find magic to help us there.”
I nodded. “I noticed that, too. Powerful signs happen in threes. I got told three times in twelve hours that I should be in Peru. I don’t like to ignore the spirits when they shout at me.” I didn’t want to pry, but had to ask her… “Have you seen anything about this?”
She cringed and looked away from me. “Not really anything helpful. I’m sorry. Ever since…you know…it’s been hard. I feel like I’m blocked. It’s probably just psychological, but I’m worried that—”
The phone started ringing and I wanted to chuck it across the room.
“You don’t have to answer it,” Teresa said.
“He’ll just keep calling.” But boy did I not want to answer it. “Hello.” I held my breath as I waited for his response.
“Claudia? Finally. What the hell is going on over there?”
I didn’t know what to say. Or where to start. “A lot is going on.”