Category Archives: Ancient Mystic Sagas Info
Ancient Mystic Sagas:
|(A1) Wars for Power Saga
#1: The Ancients Have Chosen
#2: Brother Against Brother
#3: Warrior Rebellion
#4: Renegades and Revolutionaries
#5: Lord Guardian’s Vision
|(A2) Ancient Mystic Mirror Saga:
#1: The Visionary
#2: Beyond Wildest Dreams
#3: Terror in Paradise
#4: The Wars for Power
#5: The Ancient Mystic’s Charm
|(B) Young Guardian Trilogy:
1 Young Guardian and the Dominionite
2 Legacy of the Dawn
3 Diary of the Young Guardian
|(B2) Shadow and the Grand Magus Saga
#1 A Thing Called Destiny
#2 The Deepest Secrets
#3 Darkest Fears
#4 Back in Time
#5 For All Eternity
|(C)Ancient Ancient Mystic Circle Saga:
#1: The Ancient Mystic’s Challenge
#2: Demon Fire
#3: The War of the Realms
#4: Hope for Tomorrow
#5: Sabrina’s Legacy
|(D) Ancient Mystic Crusaders Saga:
#1: Enemy Territory
#2: A Wish For Death
#3: The Journey
#4: Dominick’s Quest
#5: Final Requisition
|(E) Curse of the Wishing Stone Saga:
#1: Power of the Curse
#2: The Stone’s Return
#3: Legacy of the Wishing Stone
#4: Inherit the Darkness
#5: Within the Wisher’s Soul
|(F)The Chosen One Saga
#1: Charge of the Unicorn
#2: Ancient Mystic Over-Seer
#3: Samantha’s Quest
#4: The Crystal Rose
#5: A Future Ahead
|(G) Dominionite Crystal Saga:
|(G2) Elemental Crusaders Saga
#1: Call of the Akasha
#2: Demons of the Elements
#3: Fight Fire With Fire
#4: Ancient Mystic Magic Gifts
#5: The Chosen One’s Legacy
|(G3) Ancient Mystic Elements Saga:
#1: Enchanted Elements
#2: Fire and Ice
#3: Winds of the Earth
#4: The Spirit of Time
#5: Ancient Mystic Kin-Ties
|(H) The Ancient Mystics Kingdom Saga:
#1: The Ancient Mystic Kingdom
#2: Warring Lands
#3: Peace Treaties
#4: Through Time and War
#5: The New Generation
|(J) Ancient Mystic Wizards Saga:
#1 Ancient Mystic Sons
#2 Depths of the Dark Area
#3 Magic Unleashed
#5 Ancient Mystic Wizards
|(K) Ancient Mystic Knights Saga
#1 Hail, Ancient Mystic Knights
#2 Knights For Power
#3 Rite of Passage
#4 Quest For Knighthood
#5 Brakkon’s War
|(L) Ancient Mystic Creatures Force Saga:
#1 Unicorn Magic
#2 Dragon Magic
#3 Gargoyle Magic
#4 An Ancient Mystic Force
#5 Ancient Mystic Jewels of the Province
|(M) Lady Knights Saga:
#1: Lady Knights of the Kingdom
#2: Lord Bane’s Revival
#3: Powers of the Ancient Mystics
#4: Beginning of the End
#5: Sam’s Secret Life
|(N) Lady Guardian’s Reign Saga
#1: Death Begins Life
#2: Fight for Freedom
#3: Secrets of Ancient Mystic Magic
#4: Evil Beyond Doubt
#5: O’Dell’s Forgotten Legacy
|(N2)Demon Fighters Saga
#1: Demon Song
#2: Demon Dance
#3: Demon Chant
#4: Demon’s Curse
#5: Demon Fighters Forever
|(N3) United Ancient Mystic Forces Saga
#1: Trouble in the Dream Realm
#2: In the Name of Evil
#3: Mirror, Mirror
#4: The Bestiary
#5: A Force to Be Reckoned With
|(O) Ancient Mystic Waters Saga
#1: Love Betrothed
#2: Enchanted Magic
#3: Against All Odds
#4: Family Legacy
#5: Generations Ahead
(P) Universal Magic Saga
#1: Young Lovers
#2: Fight of the Centuries
#3: Between Life and Honor
#4: Generation Gap
#5: Pride of the Ancient Mystic Line
|(Q) The Ancient Mystic’s Melody Saga
#1: The Twin Oath
#2: An Ancient Mystic Song
#3: Secret Melody
#4: Bitter Notes
|(R) The Dwellers Saga
#1: The Dwellers
#2: The Stalkers
#3: The Ancient Mystics
#4 The Children
#5: The Legacy
|(R2) The Ancient Mystic-Dweller Prophecy Saga
#1: Immortal Ancient Mystic-Dwellers
#2: Children of the Prophecy
#3: Forbidden Ties
#4: Family Torn
#5: Prophecy Fulfilled
|(S) Next Guardian Saga
#1:Lady Guardian’s Successor
#2: The Power of Three
#3: Family Advisory
#4: Lady Guardian’s Diary
#5: Tests for Guardianship
|Companion Chronicles Saga:
#1: Warrior Companions
#2: Companion Magic
#3: Companion Search
#4: Companion Legend
#5: Companion Society
Character idea: Where would she go: Lavender Rose, helper, healer and witch…ancient or recent? More about her as she comes up. Sweet once you get to know her, can change from an old woman to a young one at will, so she’s a Shifter (not dweller). Lives in the old Witches Grove….never met Lady Guardian or the others and controls the Grove…like a lady of it..She will meet her once Lady Guardian’s Reign forces our heroine to seek guidance….
Note: In Lady Guardian’s Reign Saga, the “Sparrows’ Paw” mentioned is a flower, hidden in the Grey Area, deep within the Forest of Never-Yesteryear, where all the hidden days that never happened live, along with faded memories. This is where Lady Guardian is haunted by her past, to conquer old enemies, and get on with the mission: Saving Elder Lord Guardian himself, O’Dell, who’s on his deathbed. The disease that haunts his life, threatening it is Lady Guardian’s faith in the Dream Realm’s special gifts of Ancient Mystic Magic.
Ancient Mystic Mirror Saga:
This is where all the Ancient Mystic Magic begins.
Sibylline is a powerful Ancient Mystic while her mistress Originators, Enchantra and Challandra, are intent on keeping their own magic from fading. O’Dell sees each of the women separately, impregnating them.
After her son Braken Joel is born, Sibylline must live with the fact of her affair on her conscious. Her husband, who is loving and caring, doesn’t know his son isn’t his own until Sibylline sees a vision in her Fate Crystal.
When Sibylline sees the vision, her world starts to spin. She still hasn’t perfected her Spell-book, and needs Enchantra’s and Challandra’s help in completing it. Working from her mind, and her soul, Sibylline comes closer and closer to death and an ultimate weapon – A mirror that’ll keep her from actually dying in the Dream Realm. It will keep her magic alive along with keeping an eye on the Earthbound Dreamers of the world.
This is her story, her saga, and the start of her Ancient Mystic Magic – the most powerful force against Earthbound Demons as well as the Dominionites at Dark Tower.
There will be Ancient Mystic Magic, and it will be well preserved, used by a few against evil.
Young Guardian Saga:
A Destiny begins as the Young Guardian is chosen. Ariana Moon, an orphan at the Shore Point Home for Children, is introduced to the fascinating era of the Dream Realm. Soon, she is visited by a Companion, who is banished to Ariana as a part of the Dream Master’s scheme to rule the Dream Realm. Meanwhile, Derrick Reading is dreaming of the perfect girl – only she needs his help. He doesn’t know what to do, and is soon visited by the Elder Guardian of the Dream Realm. Aaron Theodore is the father of the Enchantress, to which is Ariana’s daughter, given up. He’s also the best friend who protects her from the harm of Helen Gertrude. Luna Woods, Ariana’s twin, knows something is going on, and she tells her cousin Shannon Ryan about her very disturbing dreams. Mark Grey is a troubled young man with an evil, younger, adopted sister Caroline.
Together, these are the ones to destroy a determined beast with a little help of four special Companions – Katherine Hawk, the young Balinese banished to Young Guardian, Kitty-Hawk, Katherine’s twin banished to Sister Luna, Wolf Stargazer, the love of Katherine’s who was banished to Mark for being in love, and his good friend Toby Snow, lover of Kitty-Hawk who seeks revenge.
They are the Dream Realm Crusaders, and this is only the beginning.
The Shadow and the Grand Magus Saga:
The Young Guardian’s twin and her Earthly Protector tell their stories. From adoption, to the Wars, to the Crusades, Luna Woods and Shane “the Shadow” Morehouse tell their sides of the Young Guardian Saga. Each has secrets from one another, that only in the telling do they become close.
Shadow’s parents died in a car accident when he was a little boy. Luna’s Ancient Mystic powers are keeping her from her twin. When Luna’s grandmother Dixilynne Ryan opens her doors for them, even she doesn’t expect the results of a bonding friendship. Luna holds secrets of her family, keeping them from her cousin Shannon until the Crusades begin. Shadow knows a lot about detective work. When he joins the Crusade for the Wars for Power, he learns a lot more about himself than he’d ever wanted to know. Luna’s growing Magic leads her and Shadow into a spiral of pain, love, lust, magic, and friendship.
Join two of the System’s best recruits as they learn to live, love, fight, and be Ancient Mystic.
Ancient Mystic Circle Saga:
The Woods’ sisters have been given an ultimatum – give their power to Sabrina the Dream Maiden or die a long, painful death in the Dark Side of the Grey Area. Sabrina’s back and more prepared with a new set of Warriors. These Warriors have power to drain Ancient Mystic Magic – and killing a living Earthbound is in their programming.
Anna’s the first victim to fall under Sabrina’s spell. She feels weary and has to rest and recharge. Thing is – she hasn’t used her powers in years! Mary Ellen is afraid of the future – and premonition isn’t even her power! She and her sisters are going to die – soon. What can she do to stop it from happening? Claudia, the youngest, has a flashing vision haunting her mind. If she and her four sisters don’t do something – the forces of death will take hold, killing them off – one by one.
Ariana Woods, along with her twin Aluna, know exactly who their dealing with. Why does Sabrina keep up the fight? She knows the Woods’ are more powerful than she is – and they’ve proven it, too. Why doesn’t she just give up? Unfortunately, Sabrina’s one determined demon.
They’re in for quite a ride.
Ancient Mystic Crusaders Saga:
Sabrina, Orthos’ seductive daughter had my mother in the bad part of the Dominion: Dark Tower. She had made a pact with her brother, the equally seductive Damian, that Ariana (my mother) would be brought to him and be his bride. Only, it didn’t happen that way. My mother was smart, but not smart enough to use her new powers to escape a horrid cage. Damian made the bars of her cell so painful, she tried to use her powers to escape, but was badly hurt.
I felt her then. I didn’t know how, but I did. I was only 5-years-old, but I was wise despite my youth. I wanted to join in the search and help rescue her, but Great-aunt Sharon, whom I was living with at the time, told me to stay away, and the Sisters would help. Skipping ahead, they rescued her, and two years later, my Momma and I met for the first time in person since my birth. It was such a joyous occasion, and Derrick, who I started to call Daddy then, sat me down and explained to me what was going on.
I am sixteen now, no longer a child. I want to tell someone of my gifts, but I’m not allowed. I had more power now than I’d had when I was younger, and am able to do more things in the Dream Realm than I originally could.
This is to be a story of pain, pleasure, hatred, deceit, lust, ambiance of horror, terror, and surprise. A story of laughter, love, past and present, a mother’s wish to her child, and much more. This is the story of when I met Dominick face-to-face, and defeated him.
Curse of the Wishing Stone Saga
The Circle of hate has stopped for Aaron Theodore and his twin sister Amethyst Theresa. They’ve been adopted back into their own family! Not soon after, Aimee finds a peculiar gem in their backyard, granting them two very curious wishes. Years later, Aaron’s son Zander and his own twin sister Sable have found it again. With a simple wish, they’re changed into each other. It’s up to Aimee and Aaron to help them. Once that little adventure is over, the two sets of twins want to get rid of the Wishing Stone. Aaron has his own best friend, the Lady Guardian, to place a chant over it, only for her to plummet them into the past – eighteen years! In order to get home – to their own time – they must find Jezebel, and have her call out the reversing spell to the four of them. Not soon after they return, the Wishing Stone is handed down from their grandfather.
With Zander away during a Crusade in California, it’s up to Aimee, Aaron, and the Dweller twins’ older stepbrother Theodore to help look after Sable, who insists on keeping the Stone. Unfortunate for her, Jezebel is back, and will stop at nothing to consume her body. When Zander finally comes back, they get into a fight, and make a deadly wish…The wish that would turn their whole lives around – I wish I never had a brother!
Now, Sable is left and their stepsister, the Lady Guardian’s daughter the Enchantress, Kelina Erin, has her help with the Dream Realm. When she meets Lord Guardian O’Dell, he tells her one thing. Just because a wish is made, doesn’t mean it cannot be unmade. Sable must make the final wish that will bring back Zander, rid herself of the Wishing Stone, and return their lives back to normal – all before the next full moon! Will Sable make it in time, or is she already doomed for a remorseful life?
The Chosen One Saga:
Amethyst Theresa Schmidt has always had a knack for animals. It’s as if she knows exactly what they’re saying, and they seem to understand her! Years out of the Orphanage has Aimee thinking about that gift. Could she be like her best friend Ariana Moon, who’s an Ancient Mystic? Lord Guardian of the Dream Realm comes to her, and so do the Elemental Mistresses, Dana, Aura, Brianna, and Hestia. Lord Guardian tells her she has a special kind of Magic in the bracelets Ariana gave she and her brother Aaron. She has Unicorn Magic, and must learn it in order to save her brother and new friends from certain death.
Years later, a new team of Crusaders is in need of an Over-seer. Her niece Kelly‘s friends are in danger from something no one can figure out. An old nemesis, Shenara, is haunting a school friend of theirs, Peter Valentine, and taking him to the Unknown each night. The only girl to know what’s going on is a very smart, sophisticated, well-read Samantha West. Samantha comes to Aimee describing her many dreams and visions that begin to scare her. That’s when Aimee knows: Samantha West is the new Crusader team’s Over-Seer, and Aimee herself must train her in the power of Unicorn Magic. It’s Samantha’s turn to help her best friends defeat Dream Realm enemies, and return the Outer-World and Dream Realm to peace once again. Can she handle it without losing herself in the Unicorn Magic?
Dominionite Crystal Saga:
Lady Guardian’s daughter, Kelly, is the Enchantress. With her friends and cousins, she is a part of the 3rd Generation Dream Realm Crusaders. They once defeated a demented, lowly creature named Dominick with quite a fight. Kelly, along with Cara Richardson, Josh Stevenson, Krysti Farthay, Steve Edwards, Bradley Allen, cousin Amanda Jo and Amanda’s boyfriend Brock Cavanaugh, have found something terribly wrong with the Dream Realm.
Lady Guardian herself is ill and Derrick is away, unable to help. A once destroyed enemy, Shenara, is back to haunt the Crusaders’ enemies – Cara Daniels, Richie Carmichael, Lillian Straus, and Johnny Kincaid. Kelly runs into Cara Daniels in the bathroom one day and notices something vaguely familiar around her neck — a segment of the Dominionite Crystal. Cara Richardson notices right away something is strange with her boyfriend and fellow Crusader Josh Stevenson. The girls find out all five segments have been found — and are being used to totally ruin the Dream Realm Crusaders – literally. Kelly knows what’s going on – and it’s going to be a hard time getting the facts. Thing is – how will she be able to get all five segments together in order to save her enemies, her mother, and the Dream Realm itself? Katherine Stargazer is doing her part – along with learning a lot about Ladyhood. The Crusaders must get together – all of them – and find a way to help a world stay together. Kelly’s got a lot on her hands, and only the best will do.
Ancient Mystic Wizards Saga:
Antony Gregory Woods, Susan’s youngest son, is jealous. He has five sisters with a great force of power. Why can’t he have it, too? Antony has a special wizard’s power, down deep. It’s about time Antony’s able to unleash his special magic. Martin Joel McNathaniels, Shannon’s son, was always kept from all harm. What he didn’t know is that harm was soon to be his middle name. His mother tells him to keep his magic practice to a minimum, not wanting to risk the family secret – even to his father, Nick. Shannon’s afraid of Nick going insane over it, as he almost did years ago during the Crusade. There’s got to be something Martin McNathaniels can do! Jonas Howard Crawford, Matthew Crawford’s younger twin son, has always been the twin with all the control, but none of the courage to use his great power. Now, he must help in a very special way.
Andrew James Reading, Lady Guardian’s son and the Enchantress’s brother, has always been a little envious of the family magic. Being the serious Reading twin, his nose in books always forced him to be singled out from the rest of his class. Uncle Antony comes to him with a message: Ancient Mystic Magic is the key, to set your spirited heart free. Caleb Ryan Morehouse knew his mother was special, not to mention his aunt Ariana and cousin Kelly. Not understanding the danger, Caleb tries to cast some spells. His younger brother Logan Matthew Morehouse copycats him, only to find he’s just as powerful. It’s invigorating! Soon, Luna worries for her sons. What’s going on with Caleb and Logan? The answer is in her brother Antony, Nephew Andrew, and Cousins Martin and Jonas.
O’Dell hears from his brother, Maximaniac that he’s being over-ruled – by his own people and magic! Enter the Ancient Mystic Wizards… The Dream Realm will never be the same.
Antony – 27, Jonas — 14, Andrew/Caleb – 13, Marty – 10, Logan – 8
Ancient Mystic Knights Saga:
When a wizard’s adventurous twin brother begins to take things seriously, he gets to thinking: What more is there for me? Mark-Antony, named after a special male in his mother’s life, is all grown up, thinking just that. That’s when he begins to snoop around the one part of the Dream Realm his mother always warned him away from: the Dark Side of the Grey Area. It’s there he meets an Elder Dream Realm Companion, Brakkon Hawk, finds Mark in trouble, face to face with an enemy of the Crusaders: Dominick. Saving him from the menace, Brakkon then offers him a deal. He’ll train Mark to be a knight if he agrees to help fight in the Dark Side War.
Mark has no idea what he’s up against – with his own twin fighting with magic, and his step-sister fighting with her special power – but he knows one thing: It’ll all be worth it! He’ll do anything for an adventure!
The Knights soon bring in Joey Farthay, Krysti the Crusader’s younger brother, Kurt Stevenson, Josh the Crusader’s younger brother, and a special surprise in Sam Smith – Steve’s younger cousin: Sam’s a girl! Not only does the Dark Side have something to worry about, so does Mark – who has a crush on her! When Jason Crawford, another Wizards’ twin brother, gets involved, he learns just what it is that makes his Water Magic tick.
They’re in for the ride of their lives – and boy are they gonna have fun!
Ancient Mystic Creatures Force Saga:
Three Companion Dreamers – who are actually animals when they dream, are chosen.
Three very different jewels are given out, as their destiny is soon revealed. With the help of the Ancient Mystic Jewels, these three teenagers are given the strength, courage, and magic they need to help them fight against the Grey Arean Demons. Unicorn Magic, held by Corrine Black Hawk, gives her the magic of flight and the special power of animal connection. Dragon Magic gives Davis Michaels power over the earth. He can dominate the Earth’s forces of soil, wind, water, fire, and air. Gargoyle Magic gives a troubled young know-it-all Erick Stoddard the power of invisibility, flight, and travel.
Later, from the Dream Realm, they’re joined by two Young Companions and a Young Dreamer. With Bear Magic is a Young Dreamer named Danielle, who was the subject of an early Crusade to find her family and is now the second Page of Snow Castle. (Tell how she died) With Cheetah Magic is an adventurous Young Companion named Diedre King (King and Lexi’s daughter), who can’t seem to keep her nose out of trouble. With Wolf Magic is the Page of Stargazer Castle, Red-Wolf Moondancer, a Young Companion with a knack for danger. When they team together, they find some Dominionites – once powerful, now a pain – have come back to be Earthbound. They must fight them in a region where no one knows what’s going on. Only Lady Guardian and the Sisters can help them now.
Lady Guardian’s Reign Saga:
There’s trouble in the Dream Realm that only Lady Guardian herself must face – O’Dell is on his deathbed, and tells Ariana the time has come. Trouble is – she’s not ready, knowledge-wise or age-wise. She does all that she can, but still needs assistance from the Sisters. In her heart, she knows she can do it, but taking over for O’Dell will be hard. She tries a few tests, just to make sure. Finally, after a long, hard battle – her body Earthbound still – she’s able to finally take over for O’Dell while he’s ill. The Sisters – Enchantra, Challandra, and even Sibylline – try to postpone O’Dell’s death by chanting and Ancient Mystic Magic. Soon, all Companions with at least a little power try to keep O’Dell alive.
Meanwhile, Derrick is Ariana’s Earthly Protector. Derrick, along with her whole family, are forced to stand aside and wait while Ariana is in the Dream Realm being her Lady Guardian self. Kelly, the The Enchantress, is worried for her mother. Her brothers Mark-Antony, an Ancient Mystic Knight, and his twin Andrew, an Ancient Mystic Wizard, bring all their forces together in the Dream Realm to help – to no avail.
This is something the Lady Guardian must do alone. No Crusaders, No Knights, No Wizards, No Companions, No Creatures, and No Sisters. It’s going to be hard keeping the Dream Realm up alone, without guidance from any one of her friends or family. Her own Magic is tested to it’s utmost limits, and then some. Will Ariana survive the battles in order to reign the Dream Realm? She’d better – a whole world is at stake – and it’s in her hands.
Welcome to Lady Guardian’s Reign of the Dream Realm. Enjoy.
Ancient Mystic Waters Saga:
The The Enchantress, Kelina Erin, is getting married to her Earthly Protector, Bradley Allen. As is Cara Richardson to Josh Stevenson, and Kirsten Farthay to Steven Edwards. With Bradley’s new surname, Waters, Kelly is destined for something more than she ever dreamed. Just as her mother before her, the day they marry in a triple wedding, Enchantra warns her of being Earthbound. It’s not easy with friends like the Companions asking for her to visit.
Her mother, Lady Guardian, knows what her daughter’s finally going through. Glad that she and Bradley are happy, both Ariana and Aaron, Kelly’s father and Bradley’s adopted father, can’t help feeling secretly sad. Their little girl has grown up, and faced with new challenges in life. For a full year, Kelly has to go through life without using the Ancient Mystic Magic for anything. She can’t even Crusade to the Dream Realm.
The good news comes in form of a baby – whom Kelly names after Lady Katherine Stargazer. Nick-named Katie, the little girl brings new hope for an Earthbound The Enchantress and her band of Crusaders. What kind of disaster lurks within the walls of the Waters?
Universal Magic Saga:
The Waters’ daughter Katie is growing up. She’s pretty, popular, a top scholar at school, and by far one of the most powerful Ancient Mystics in Enchantra’s line, besides her mother Kelly and grandmother Bonnie. All that power and prestige won’t take away the loneliness Katherine Waters has inside. Neither will it take away the confusion she feels over her life. Katie is about to turn sixteen, and is soon learning that life as an Ancient Mystic only gets more interesting.
On her sixteenth birthday, at the party her parents hold for her, she meets friends of theirs. Once one of the lesser-popular pairs of Wiccan lovers, the Austins are back in town. When she meets their son, Matthew “Jared” Austin, she’s intrigued by him. He tells her of all sorts of Magic he’s studying as a Solitary Wiccan, and she talks a lot about herself. The only thing Katie is keeping secret is her being an Ancient Mystic. Eventually, she tells him, which gets him seriously talking about it, and how she lights up his life. They fall in love, and soon after her high-school graduation, they get engaged.
Not all is hunky-dory, though. Things start to happen Katie’s unable to control. First-off, the Austin’s themselves make it hard for them to get together. Her own parents warn her of the dangers with both kinds of Magic together. Second, Jared’s hiding his past, not being totally truthful with her, but reminding her how much he really loves her. They get into a fight about Magic, and how rumors concerning each put them in a bind they can’t get out of. They make up in the end, declaring to each other, and themselves, to learn more about the other’s magic before cutting it to pieces.
While she’s in college for journalism, he’s there for mythology. Being on their own is hard, but they have enough love in their hearts to make it together. After four years of being together, they finally get married. The trouble starts when they have a baby, a boy they name Jay. As the toddler Jay learns about his Ancient Mystic powers, Jared wonders about his Wiccan powers. When Katie and Jared fight over it, it leaves them wondering about which to teach their child. What will happen when a Magical family like themselves gets into even darker territories?
The Next Guardian Saga:
Katie Waters-Austin and her husband Jared are happy together, at last. After years of battling their magic and destinies, time has come for their son’s own to be leashed. Jay is a powerful Ancient Mystic Wiccan, and so is his sister Minarette, but Jay is in for a big surprise. He has been chosen to succeed the Lady Guardian herself, his great-grandmother. As the legend goes, she succeeds the Lord Guardian, her great-grandfather, as the Guardian of the entire Dream Realm. Now it’s his turn to become a Guardian of their precious world. Will he be able to pass Lady Guardian’s Earthbound tests before she dies?
He’s an Ancient Mystic and a Wiccan – he can handle anything. Or can he? Once he’s led into his own families pasts, he begins to wonder just what kind of trouble he’s getting into. He must learn everything about his Ancient Mystic family, from their rights to their wrongs, their pasts and destinies, and stories from birth to death, all before Lady Guardian Ariana Dratianos dies. Jay learns just how much valor his Ancient Mystic line has against their enemies, but what about against their darkest fears and deepest secrets? Once his great-grandmother dies, it’s time to become the next Earthbound Guardian. Will he be able and willing to fight unknown demons in a never-ending battle between good and evil every night? Or will his own demons get the better of him? Jay Francis Austin must become the next Guardian of the Dream Realm, but will he die trying to outdo his predecessor?
The Ancient Mystic’s Melody Saga:
Finally, the story of all three incarnations of Melody is told. From Melody and Elisabeth, Dorianne’s daughters to Melody Crawford and her twin brother Matthew and finally Melody Reading, the Lady Guardian’s youngest daughter. The truth of their secret insanities is out.
Melody Jacobs and her twin are thirteen when the accidental Magic becomes more dangerous. Their grandmother, Enchantra, secretly teaches the girls to harness their unknown powers while their own mother Dorianne denies the knowledge. When Elisabeth is raped at sixteen, Melody’s health begins to fade. On her deathbed, Melody and Elisabeth make a pact – learn all they can about their secretive Ancient Mystic Magic, no matter the cost. In the end, the twins switch places a final time. Now Elisabeth must become aunt to her own twin daughters Annabelle and Angela.
Melody Crawford knows more about the Magic she and her twin Matthew share. At thirteen, Melody loses herself to Michael Applebee, a sophomore at the local Academy. Matthew isn’t happy, protecting over her day and night, especially when the twins find out she’s pregnant. Melody must shield herself from her twin in order not to feel his betraying pain. At their high-school graduation, Melody makes her brother apologize for nearly five years of hatred toward the only man she’ll love, Michael. After they graduate, Matthew leaves, dying in a horrible accident. Will Melody be able to live with the pain of his death?
Lastly is Lady Guardian’s own young daughter Melody Elizabeth Reading. She’s learning a great deal about her powers from her mother, sister, aunt, cousins, and especially her brothers. Andrew teaches her his arts of controlling the elements. Mark Antony teaches her his own art of dream-healing and bringing the dead back to life. Something constantly bothers her, though. Not even her loving, protective brothers can help her. Melody is constantly plagued by the knowledge of the other Melody’s in the line. Memories, visions, dreams, and even becoming them makes her nearly out of her mind. What could it all mean? She has a feeling her parents know the answer, but will they tell her the truth?
The Dwellers Saga:
1: The Dwellers – meet a different sort of vampire. Ramon Lagosi is one not to be messed with. He is the ruler of the Dwellers, an underground coven of vampires. The Dwellers of Romania fight the constant battle between good and evil in the harsh darkness of night. Only one among them can stand the daylight. A Sun-Dancer they call Ramon, the Dark Son. His mother a witch, his father a vampire, Ramon must struggle to obtain his rule on a kind most likely to revolt against a Halfling like him – the Stalkers. Only the Jewel Siblings know where he came from, and what his destiny is. Now he must find himself to gain order in his own country.
2: The Stalkers – The Stalkers are modern-day vampires, those who kill for the fun of it. Those who were Exiled from the Dwellers once they killed their first prey. Ramon and his princess must hunt in the night to catch and kill before all of their kind are exterminated. Seeking help from the Shifters and Drifters, the Dwellers will hunt the Stalkers down, one by one. Killing a Stalker becomes personal when he finds his own father is one of them. For on the day of Ramon’s birth, his first kill was the mother. The secret of the Dwellers must be kept so, even if it means extinction.
3: The Ancient Mystics – While in the city of Rome, Italy, The Dwellers take on a much-needed rest from the hunt. A different sort of energy dwells beneath the surface when Diamond and Jasper catch a girl just outside their door. Ramon has her locked up in a dungeon room, but cannot stay away. He hears her pleas for help in his mind on a path not used by his kin. The strange beauty, named Bella Jacobi, shows him just how much love he has in his heart. It amazes him – he has feeling again, after a century of nothingness, he can feel. She teaches him how to have faith in himself, and how to love. Bella shows him things he has never seen before, while bringing together bits and pieces of both their pasts. Emerald and Diamond, the very two siblings to call themselves his mother and father, see his fate is in the young Bella’s hands. Will he accept himself before he can accept her?
4: The Children – Ramon and Bella are Lord and Lady of the Dwellers, happy at last in their little world. He refuses to make her a Dweller herself, feeding on blood to survive. They are blessed and afraid once a child is born to them. Simone is different from the rest of their kind, for she is Ancient Mystic and Dweller, Human and Witch, all in one powerful, confused child. The Elders help her learn her Dweller secrets, her mother helps her with her Ancient Mystic magic, and her father teaches some of the Stregan Craft he was taught as a boy. One Dweller would give his life for Ramon and Bella’s daughter: Daniel, Ramon’s brother has claimed Simone his Bonded. When Ramon’s son Stefan is born, there is much more concern for the child’s safety. He shows more Stregan power than his sister, and begins his studies in the Italian Witchcraft with the Elder twins, Garnet and Hematite.
5: The Legacy – Called on by her Great-Grandfather Lord Guardian O’Dell of the Dream Realm, Bella must bring her family to the States for an Ancient Mystic reunion. Something is happening in the Dream Realm, for it’s fading away to nothingness. The Ancient Mystics find the Stalkers made a splice in the Realms and are hurting Dreamers’ minds. That’s when Lady Guardian calls for help from afar, for not even she has seen anything like this before. In order to kill the Stalkers in the Dream Realm, they must unite power, strength, will, mind, and courage. It will take more than just a few Ancient Mystics to get rid of something so dark and hateful. It would take the Dwellers, all of them, to combine forces with the unknown Ancient Mystics. Let the Legacy begin.
Ancient Mystic-Dweller Prophecy Saga:
The Ancient Mystics and the Dwellers have never been close, but now they’ll have to in order to fulfill a prophecy set by the Ancients. Ariana Dratianos and Bella Lagosi have nothing in common besides their Ancient Mystic heritage. When Ariana is called on to Romania as the Lady Guardian, she meets one of the Unknown Ancient Mystics, Annabelle Jacobs. Annabelle, known now as Bella Lagosi, has been exiled in Romania for years, known as an Ancient Mystic Dweller with her husband, the Dark Son himself, Ramon and her children Simone and Stefan. Nothing but a prophecy could get these two women together. First, Ariana is made a Dweller, then Derrick, and finally, Luna. They learn all they can before returning to the states.
Soon after they return, the twins Ariana and Luna bare two children. Ariana’s son Darien would fall for his own cousin, Luna’s daughter Morgan Le Fey. They would be the only Ancient Mystics in history or future to be each other’s Earthly Protectors. When they’re eighteen, they flee to Romania together to become Bonded in the Dweller Ceremony. At first, Ramon forbids it, but he doesn’t see what his wife does. Darien and Morgan care about each other very deeply. The Elders converse and agree to perform the Bonding Ceremony, with a catch. They are forbidden to have any children of their own.
Knowing this, they adopt a little one named Savannah shortly after marrying in the states. Savannah knows nothing of what her parents are to each other or of the Ancient Mystics. All she knows is that her mother’s psychic and they both drink blood. Years go by, with Savannah being cared for by a housekeeper Fran until she’s old enough to take care of herself. That’s when Fran disappears and Savannah finds the truth about everything. In order for her to better understand the Dweller world, Morgan and Darien take Savannah to Romania. This is where she meets Bella, Ramon, Simone and especially Stefan.
Stefan has never met a beauty such as Savannah before in his life. They talk when they are alone, and realize they have been dreaming about each other for a long time. To an Ancient Mystic, it means a match. To a Dweller, it means a Bonding. To Savannah, it means confusion and more. She dreamed specifically of a knight in ring-mail, galloping on his trusted steed to save her from destruction. Stefan knows nothing about the fighting arts, only of his Wizard’s craft. What he does know is that she is the final link in the prophecy. They’re Bonded and married before long and have a child. His name is Lamont, and he would be the one to destroy all Stalkers and return balance to all Dweller-kin.
The Lady Knights Saga:
Sam Smith used to be an Ancient Mystic Knight with Mark Reading, Joey Farthay, Kurt Stevenson and Jason Crawford. She knows something’s brewing in the Dream Realm not even Mark knows about. Her good friends, Mark’s cousins Meredith and Angel are having visions of mass destruction in the Ancient Mystic’s Kingdom. Soon, even Stacy has the visions. Time for evasive action. She gathers the three of them together in secret to find what’s going on.
Turns out, Lord Byron and the Nightmare King himself Bane are at it again. Sam brings the four girls with her to the Kingdom, offering her services. At first, Meredith, Angel and Stacy act as if they don’t know how to lift a sword. “They are your cousins, Lady Samantha.” Challandra smiles. “Teach them what you know and we will be that much better.” Will Sam get her friends’ acts together before Bane destroys Lord Byron? Or will the Nightmare King rule the Ancient Mystic Kingdom, with Challandra as his hostage?
Once the Lady Knights are dubbed so, and Lord Bane is done with them, they continue to learn more about their astonishing powers. Thanks to the Pact she made with her cousins, Angel is an Ancient Mystic and has the Dragon’s Magic. Meredith learns the reason she’s so good at all the Magics, but she also learns a valuable lesson in friendship and love. Stacy is haunted by Bane, reminded of her parents deaths years before. Will she ever stop blaming herself? As for Sam, she must learn how to be a Wizard as well as a Knight. The girls’ control over their Magics and minds are one of the main clues in finally defeating Lord Bane and his Dark Areans. Do they have what it takes?
Ancient Mystic Mirror Saga:
Sibylline sighed, bored to tears. Her Magic was getting too common, even for her.
Imagine – one of the most powerful Ancient Mystic in all the Dream Realm – bored to tears.
She didn’t know what to think about O’Dell’s new-found world. There weren’t many people to meet here, not many that knew of where exactly they were.
Sibylline took flight, trying her new ability on for size. Even flight was too boring.
She descended, once her eyes caught sight of a young Siamese below. The new area was called The Feline Wood, and its Dreamer Companions imagined themselves as felines – different breeds.
“Hello, Young Siamese.” Sibylline called to him.
He turned, his green-eyes were delighted to see her.
“G’Day, M’Lady Sibylline.”
Sibylline laughed. “Please, call me Sibylline. I insist.”
“Aye, Sibylline.” He tried the name on his lips. “The most beautiful name I have ever heard.”
Sibylline blanched. “Why, thank you, sir.”
The Siamese took her hand and kissed it. “The name is Braken Hawk, M’Lady.”
“Tis a pleasure.” Sibylline smiled at Braken Hawk. He was handsome, even if he was a feline, and she a human. “Tell me a little about yourself.”
He took her hand and led her to places she’d never seen before. It was his private little Kingdom, and the couple became involved.
Not soon after, they were to be betrothed in a special ceremony, led by O’Dell and his Ancient Mystic Sisters, Enchantra and Challandra.
“Do not fuss so, Sibylline.” Challandra flustered, fixing Sibylline’s hair.
“Be nice, Challandra.” Enchantra warned. She turned to Sibylline. “You look wonderful, sister.”
“Thank you, Enchantra.” Sibylline beamed. She couldn’t help feeling something was amiss.
Enchantra noticed this. “Is there something bothering you?”
Her hand went to her belly. “Do you swear to secrecy?”
“Depends,” Challandra said dryly.
“What is it?” Enchantra ignored her prissy twin.
Sibylline took a deep breath. “I am to have O’Dell’s child.”
“Does Braken know?” Challandra gasped.
“Nay, and I do not wish him to know.” Sibylline told her. “I was hoping you would offer advice to me of how to handle this.”
“I say, be involved with Braken, as soon as you enter your Castle.” Challandra offered. Even her twin was interested in what she had to say next. “Then, it will seem as if the child is his. Understood?”
“Aye.” Sibylline sighed, fingering her necklace. “It shall be done.”
It would be years before Sibylline would think of it again.
A decade of Outer-World time went by, and her son, Braken Joel, after his father, was growing up beautiful.
It was a nice change to be domestic. Her husband was on the prowl at times, and she had stuck to the form of a Persian. This made her son a Balinese Feline. Beautiful in every respect.
It was as if she’d never had any magic at all. Though, still in private, she would read her Fate Crystal.
Every night, before the Dreamers came, she would go to the Ancient Mystic Sisters in their own Palace, telling them of things she saw. Most of the time, it was news of a new Dreamer Child born to the Dream Realm, or an Outer-World Dreamer Child was sleeping peacefully, coming to play for the first time.
One night, as she peered into her crystal, she saw something she would regret reading.
I must get to O’Dell. He will know what to do.
“Where are you going at this time of day?” Braken asked, as he played with his son in the yard.
“To the Sisters and O’Dell. I must speak to them.” Sibylline’s words were jumbled as she took flight. She changed to a human female as she flew. Ahead of her, she saw her own twin sister Jezebel. She was usually the one to be seducing every creature in the Dream Realm.
At the moment, Jezebel had a smirk on her face as she floated in front of her. “I wonder how my nephew is doing?”
Sibylline stopped in her tracks. “Leave him be. He is not of your kind.”
“You wouldn’t know it by the way his mother acts.” Jezebel laughed, her red eyes glowed.
Sibylline pointed with her hand at Jezebel, rendering her motionless. “Explain, before I am forced to kill.”
“I must say, I am impressed, sister dear.” Jezebel replied, keeping her grin. “Bearing the Guardian’s own son! Bravo!”
“How do you know?”
“My own husband, of course.” Jezebel said, and Sibylline released her. “Orthos has his ways of finding out even the most elaborate of schemes. Yours impressed him.”
“I need not be judged by anybody, especially that evil husband of yours.” Sibylline spat.
“Do tell, how do you do it?” Jezebel wouldn’t let up. She loved teasing her goody-goody sister.
“I need not explain my actions to you.” Sibylline cried. “I must get through.”
“Fine, but I will be back.” Jezebel warned. “One of these days, he will become one of us.”
Sibylline ignored Jezebel as she flew past her.
The Sisters’ Ancient Mystic Palace was nearby, its jewels shone brightly, telling Sibylline the Sisters’ weren’t in trouble of losing their power – or lives – anytime soon.
Sibylline descended to meet Challandra in the garden.
“Have you seen O’Dell or Enchantra?” She asked.
“Enchantra is inside, tending to her daughters.” Challandra replied. “Go ahead.”
“Thank you.” Sibylline walked in and spotted Enchantra with her elder and twin daughters, Dorianne and Dixilynne. “Hello, Enchantra.”
Enchantra smiled when she saw her standing by the door. “Welcome, Sibylline. What visions have you for us today?”
Sibylline looked to the floor. “Not good. I need to speak to O’Dell.”
Enchantra told her daughters to play while she spoke with her fellow wizardress. “Is something wrong? What did you see?”
“Tell us what distresses you so.” O’Dell’s strong voice was heard behind the women. They turned.
“I saw something in my Crystal I did not wish to see.” Sibylline’s voice was low and she was on the verge of tears. As a human male, O’Dell came and hugged her shoulders. Enchantra stood silent, listening.
Sibylline went on. “I saw my own death. Tis drawing nearer, and so are the Wars for power.”
“Wars?” O’Dell asked. “My brother agreed not to provoke any wars.”
“We all know what Orthos has on his mind now,” Enchantra told him. “You know he will do anything to anyone and not feel a thing for them.”
“It would not be by his hand I would die.” Sibylline spoke up before they could go into arguments over the Dominion’s own Dream Master. “It would be by my own sister’s.”
“I would not doubt Jezebel would do such a horrible thing.” Challandra had walked in on Sibylline’s last sentence.
“But she would not know of it herself, I suppose.” Sibylline tried to explain. “Tis hard to explain, and I would rather wait until I see further.” She turned to O’Dell. “My sister has somehow found out about our affair.”
“How would she find out if you did not tell anyone?” Enchantra replied.
“Who else? Orthos.” Sibylline recalled. “I have a feeling he will not be so easy to defeat.”
“We will help you, Sibylline. Whatever it is, we agree to do.” Challandra was serious, and Enchantra and O’Dell stared at each other. “Tell us.”
“Soon, I shall have a pair of twins of my own – Katherine and Kittens’ Claw. Katherine will be an asset to you once I am gone. Only, I do not know how. I want you to keep an eye on them.”
“Nay. As Young One’s, not far from adulthood, these kittens will be an asset to the entire Dream Realm Companionship.” Sibylline explained, then held her head. “I feel weak.”
“Sit, speak a song.” Enchantra told her, leading her to the settee.
“My songs, my chants, no longer work with myself.” Sibylline replied. “My Magic is fading, and I can do nothing to stop it. Tis part of my destiny.”
“Oh dear.” Enchantra sighed. “If only there were a way to save you, Sister Wizardress.”
“There is.” O’Dell’s sharp tone told the women he was serious. He turned to Sibylline. “That Crystal of yours. Is there any way to tell the destiny of others?”
“Only if the Mirror Spell is chanted.” Sibylline replied. She brightened. “Tis it – the solution to all Ancient Mystic Magic problems!”
“What is it?” Challandra was excited.
“A Mirror! I will work on it more – and certainly give you when the time comes.” Sibylline shot up, and was dizzy. She sat again, sighing. “I must hurry, though. Not much time before Orthos revolts against the Province in the Wars that will kill thousands of helpless Companions as well as Dominionites.”
“I agree.” O’Dell supplied. He helped her up. Once carrying her outside, he shifted to a unipeg. “Climb on. I will take you to Braken.”
She obeyed. “Thank you O’Dell.” Her final breath was out, and she slept soundly.
O’Dell smiled. To have Sibylline on his back was pure bliss. To comfort her when she was weak, to strengthen her brittle bones when her power was unable to. It felt good being the Dream Realm’s Guardian.
Unfortunately, O’Dell had his own problems with his brothers he was unable to control.
He just had to wait for destiny to take him to the Lady Guardian. That’s when everything will be perfect.
The Lady Guardian Saga:
Lord Guardian O’Dell could sense something awful upcoming as he stared into his magic sphere. What he saw gave him the creeps, and weighed heavily on his mind. At this moment, he could think of nothing but his brother Orthos, who called himself the Dream Master. Orthos lived in a dark, secluded area of the Dream Realm called the Dominion. No one was aloud to pass the gates to the Dominion without Orthos’ permission. It was this vision of Orthos that made Guardian O’Dell wish to seek revenge for his evil brother’s dirty deeds — before it was too late.
The four Ancient Mystic Sisters, powerful as they were, had been separated during the Wars for Power. Jezebel had gone to Orthos’ side and Sibylline had gone to be a Provincian (one from the Province). The elder twins, Enchantra and Challandra, were the only one’s to stay and help with the fight against his brother over the years. During the Wars for Power, both younger sisters were killed, and O’Dell still felt he were to blame for dear Sibylline. Knowing the true relation between them, he made a pact with Orthos to take in Sibylline’s young kits, Katherine and Kitten’s Claw Hawk.
O’Dell was the Guardian of the Dream Realm’s Provinces. It was his job to watch over the many Young Dreamers of the Outer-World. In front of many Young Dreamers, he was a kind Unicorn-Pegasus, a Unicorn with wings. That was his favorite form to take, and he had so many to choose from.
He shifted form, taking flight as a Unicorn-Pegasus. As he flew high above the Province’s Ancient Mystic Palaces, O’Dell decided it was finally time. Time to rid himself — and the future Dream Realm Crusaders — of Dream Master Orthos, his son Damian, and seductive daughter Sabrina. The only ones exempt from this Dominion revenge would be Orthos’ nieces Katherine and Kitten’s Claw Hawk. With all the evil lurking within the Dominion, Guardian wasn’t surprised that the twin Balinese wanted nothing to do with their uncle.
The Dominionite Warriors, Sabrina’s clan of fighting zombies, were just innocent pawns in her deadly, seductive plan. They had been suckered years ago by the false promises of a seductress, and were more than eager to please. Their minds were too warped to notice what was going on around them, besides Sabrina training them to kill whoever got in their mistress’ way.
Even so, O’Dell thought as soared through the air, they will perish as well.
Not all Dominionite creatures would suffer. Along with the Hawk twins, there would be a select few with kind, loving hearts that would be turned around by O’Dell’s impact.
He thought of his younger brothers, Maximaniac and Lord Byron. Maximaniac’s heart was crushed because of Orthos stealing his bride of Jezebel. Lord Byron, the youngest and most rebellious Wizard brother, was in hiding, wanting nothing to do with the battle between Orthos and O’Dell. Neither younger brothers knew which side to go, either good or evil. He knew Max wanted Jezebel back, which the only way was to be evil. Lord Byron didn’t care much for romance – his heart was on himself. Since the end of the Wars for Power, both brothers had long disappeared. O’Dell believed Max had Banished himself to the Outer-World, using his powerful Spell-book. Lord Byron was still in hiding somewhere, unaware of the fight about to take place.
O’Dell sighed. On with the show.
He surveyed the ground of the dank Dominion until he found Dark Tower, where Orthos lived. Heaving a sigh, he swooped down and appeared in front of Orthos. Guardian could tell Orthos wasn’t very thrilled to acknowledge his bossy brother’s presence.
The thought made Guardian O’Dell smile. “Why, hello, brother.” O’Dell replied, shifting form once more as his hooves touched the Dominion ground. In moments, he was a human-male.
Orthos turned, groaning once he set eyes on his brother. “Oh. It’s only you, O’Dell. Thought it was somebody important.” He muttered sarcastically, not hiding his lack of enthusiasm. He rolled his eyes, groaning. “What have I the pleasure of your royal majesty this time, brother?”
Though the brothers were nothing alike — Orthos a grotesque and evil dragon creature and O’Dell a shape-shifting, multicolored unicorn with a kind, caring heart — O’Dell felt it were his duty to keep a close eye on his younger twin brother’s actions. He knew exactly what was coming next, and decided to stay silent, letting Orthos continue.
“I have no currency, for monies are futile in our world.” Orthos replied, counting off his fingers. “I have no time, for time means nothing here, and I have no personal items, for material possessions hold no value.”
Guardian sighed, looking around. He shook his head at the filth of Dark Tower. “Orthos, I have never known you to be so soft over the most frivolous things.”
The Dream Master scoffed, offended. “Soft!? I certainly am not soft! How dare you say such a thing?”
Guardian laughed. “Calm down. You need not become overexcited!”
They heard a pair of giggles coming from the den door, and each turned to see who was there. The Hawk twins were stepping into the room. They walked slowly toward the brothers, not sure what to make of the scene. Each sister knew Lord O’Dell and Master Orthos were brothers, with O’Dell visiting often. Each time he did so, trouble was sure to follow.
Orthos frowned upon the sight of the Balinese sisters. He was having a hard time grasping the fact his nieces were slowly growing up like his brother, but decided to keep it to himself.
Guardian walked over to the girls and bid them an affectionate “Good Morrow, dears. It’s quite a pleasure seeing you again.” He turned to the eldest of the twins and took one of Katherine’s hands, kissing it. “Katherine, you look radiant this evening, as usual.”
Katherine blushed, and curtsied, purring sweetly as she bowed. “Why, thank you, my Lord Guardian.”
Kitten’s Claw, commonly known as Kitty-Hawk, rolled her eyes at her sister. She had sheared her jet-black-and-snow-white-peppered hair short to rebel, and considered herself the more beautiful twin. She folded her arms and grunted as she watched, saying nothing aloud in protest.
Guardian acknowledged her with a smile as he reached for her hand. He took it for only a split second before she snatched it away in refuse. “Kitten’s Claw, my darling Balinese, the twinkle in your eye could only mean one thing: Beauty truly is in the eye of the beholder.”
“The name is Kit.” Kit snapped, “What are you doing here anyway, O’Dell?”
Katherine stared angrily at her sister. It was normally rude to address an Elder so informally. She turned to O’Dell, bowing for forgiveness. “My deepest apologies, my Lord, for my twin sister’s behavior.”
Guardian nodded, putting it behind him. “All’s well, Madame Hawk.”
Orthos, on the other hand, returned to the subject. “Yes, Brother,” – he put the emphasis on ‘brother’. “What are you doing here?”
Guardian frowned, getting down to business. “I order you, as I often do, and you had better listen to me this time!”
Orthos shook his head and laughed. Obviously, he wasn’t taking his brother very seriously. “Or?”
“Or else be banished out of Dark Tower — and even out of the Dream Realm — forever!” Guardian O’Dell yelled in Orthos’ face.
Orthos laughed again, this time at the thought as he kept his fiendish smile on his lips. He stood and began to pace. “Putting me where, eh?” He gestured around the room. “I have been here for more than a century of centuries.”
O’Dell didn’t say anything, his arms crossed as he listened in silently. It was another one of his constant rants and raves in order to gain power. Knowing what his brother was about to say, O’Dell let him say it.
“Each time I have a scheme, you seem to ‘sense’ it.” Sure enough, Orthos continued. “Then, to make matters worse, you barge into Dark Tower — my private domain, even — and interrupt my life with pathetic garbage I have no need for! Can you not leave well enough alone?”
O’Dell was beginning to grow irritated and tired of his brother’s constant stalling. “I know you all too well, Orthos.” He paused. “Your whole perspective is backwards. You say hateful things you do not mean, and have absolutely no feelings for anyone but yourself.” Guardian slammed his fist on the table, making his brother jump. “You are a selfish, uncaring being, Orthos, and I only still call you ‘brother’ out of respect.”
Orthos shook his head again. “Get on with it, O’Dell,” he cried in a huff. “I do not have all century, you know.”
“I saw you in a vision,” Guardian replied, getting in his brother’s face. “And the vision did not look good.”
Orthos laughed. “What did you see, prey tell?”
Katherine held her breath, waiting for Guardian to speak. Kit, who didn’t care less what was going on around her, stood silent, listening in.
“If I told you, you would surely wish to change the vision.” Guardian replied, abrupt and to the point. “For now, I command you Orthos. Behave yourself in others’ dream sequences. Also,” he continued, “look after your children and never let them out of your sight.”
“Just who do you think you are, telling me what to do?” Orthos yelled, exasperated.
“Guardian of our Dream Realm, Palaces, Kingdoms, Provinces, and even your Dominion, so dare not cross me further Orthos!”
The Dream Master, who usually had a comment for everything, said nothing. He only huffed, “Well — I never!”
“–And you never will, either, Master Orthos!” A young man’s voice from behind them quipped. When O’Dell and Orthos turned around to face the boy, the boy’s voice grew serious. He bowed to Guardian with respect. “Pardon my insolence, my Lord, but I must have time with the lovely Hawk twins, if I may.”
Guardian sensed the tiger-boy meant no harm. “Certainly, Mr. Snow. Go right ahead.”
Toby Snow, who fancied Kit as his own, stood and faced the girls, nodding for them to follow him. He replied, “Thank you, my Lord.”
The girls left, and the brothers continued the conversation, staring at each other.
Orthos glared at O’Dell, with O’Dell getting more and more irritated by each passing moment. Orthos had a sadistic, yet innocent grin on his face, and O’Dell couldn’t stand it one moment longer.
“Enough is enough!”
“I have no idea what you are talking about!” Orthos yelled. “How dare you make accusations? –”
Guardian O’Dell never let him finish his sentence. “Hear me out.”
Orthos sighed. “Very well, if you must.” He rolled his eyes. “Go ahead.”
“I want you to stop whatever you may be planning for the Lady Guardian and her friends.” Guardian commanded.
Orthos looked confused. “Excuse me? What are you accusing me of this time?”
“Never mind for now. Just be wary of what happens around you, especially in my Provinces.”
Orthos laughed, “Now, why would I even come close to your precious part of the Dream Realm? I would not even think about it.” He paused. “Besides, I do whatever needs to be done at that time. This is all I can promise you.”
Before giving Orthos a chance to say anything else, Guardian O’Dell of the Dream Realm shifted to a Pegasus and disappeared. Orthos was left with an evil smirk on his face.
He appeared again in front of the Palace of the Ancient Mystic Sisters, Enchantra and Challandra. Glad for the pleasant distraction, he rapped on the brass knocker.
“Coming!” Came a distant female voice from the other side. A moment later, the door opened and a gorgeous belle greeted him with a bright, sunny smile. “My Lord! What a nice surprise!”
Was this the face of his love, Enchantra?
No, he thought sadly.
“May I come in, Challandra?” He pleaded, desperate. He changed his figure from a unicorn to a human male.
Challandra could sense the urgency in his voice. “Yes, certainly. Come in.” She watched as his hands shook, with nerves bulging. Challandra took his hand, leading him inside. “Would you like something to calm your nerves?”
O’Dell shook his head, holding it. “No. Thank you anyway, Challandra.” He followed her to the living quarters. “Is Enchantra around by any chance?”
“Right behind you, O’Dell.” Came Enchantra’s voice from behind him.
O’Dell never took offense to the greeting from her. Both Ancient Mystic twins, Enchantra and Challandra, were Elders as well. Every Companion, like Katherine, Kit, and Toby, were raised to respect the Elders.
Enchantra saw the worried look on his face and placed an arm on O’Dell’s
shoulder. “Is there something bothering you, my Lord?”
Sadly, O’Dell nodded. “I am afraid so, my beautiful Ancient Mystic twins. I have reason to believe Orthos is up to his tricks again.”
The sisters exchanged a glance and Challandra gasped.
“What can we do for you?” Enchantra asked, worried herself now.
“The Mirror. I must see the Ancient Mystic Mirror.” O’Dell commanded, beginning to search the Palace. His mind was whirling thoughts for a plan of attack.
“Certainly.” Challandra replied. “Right this way.”
With her sister behind her, Challandra led him to the Ancient Mystic Mirror Room. She opened the door with a short melody and the trio stepped inside.
The sisters watched and waited patiently as their Guardian stared into the Mirror.
“I see . . . I see . . . ” O’Dell muttered under his breath, waving his arms in front of it. “I see its time for Outer-World assistance against my brother.”
“You do not mean–?” Enchantra asked, unsure.
“Aye,” Lord Guardian looked from one twin to the other.
Challandra sighed. “Have you not fought with him before, without our help?”
O’Dell glared at her. “It’s not a joke, dear Challandra. It’s a matter of life and death the plan is unleashed.”
“My apologies, my Lord.” Challandra bowed her head.
“O’Dell, certainly you do not mean your own death?” Enchantra asked gently, worried for him. She put a caring hand on his shoulder. “Do you?”
O’Dell closed his eyes and nodded sadly. “Aye.”
“Not to worry.” Enchantra assured. “We know what to do.”
“We will help.” Her sister said, reluctant to go along. She knew the importance of O’Dell’s visions.
“Thank you, Sisters.” O’Dell replied, giving each of them a kiss; on the cheek for Challandra and the lips for Enchantra. “I knew I could count on the two of you!” He turned to leave. “For now, I must ready my successor. I will be back to look in on you.” O’Dell gave Enchantra another kiss as he exited the Palace. He changed from a human male to a Unicorn-Pegasus and flew away.
Enchantra looked at her sister as they watched him leave. “Do you remember what must be done?”
Challandra nodded, reluctant. “Yes, Sister, I remember. Find Sister Dixilynne and explain ourselves.”
Enchantra could tell her sister wasn’t happy or interested about Guardian’s suggestion. “I will go while you stay here and guard the Palace.”
“Thank you, Enchantra.”
She sighed as she left for the Outer-World.
The Shadow and the Grand Magus Saga:
It was a dream that had no beginning and no ending.
With each night, the dream continued, starring the same people. For him, it would be a lovely girl with locks of goldenrod and eyes like the moon. For her, it would always be the shadow-man, with no face or name, only a feeling of love to keep her warm at night. They came to each other when they had the need, long before this lifetime.
In the dream was great destruction, and a war among brothers’ lands. The Dominion of the Dream Realm was the evil Orthos’ domain. His brother O’Dell, Lord Guardian of the Dream Realm, looked after the rest. Both of the children witnessed the fighting from afar and close up. He even joined in the Wars for Power on O’Dell’s side. She was there, too. In the sidelines, she used various spells her mother taught her to ward off evil. She helped her Great-grandfather O’Dell fight against his brother.
When her almost-sister was thirteen, she was thrown into the Crusades. He was there with her, the youngest and brightest of recruits.
Ancient Mystic Circle Saga:
Annabelle Woods woke from a sound sleep – screaming.
Mary Ellen, her younger sister, ran to her room, stopping at the doorway.
The sisters stared at each other.
“It’s happening, isn’t it?” Mary Ellen asked her.
Annabelle, known as Anna alone, nodded, afraid. “I don’t know how to handle it.”
“This is weird.” Mary Ellen replied softly, walking in and sitting on her sister’s bed. Anna sat up and hugged her knees.
“I know.” Anna said.
“I sensed you in trouble.” Mary Ellen told her. “Premonition isn’t even my own Ancient Mystic Gift!”
“I know.” Anna repeated. “This is worse than the Crusade.”
“Think we need the twins and Claudia?”
“We’d better, just in case.”
Mary Ellen nodded. “I’ll wake Claud.”
“I’ll dress and get the twins.” Anna told her, climbing out of bed. “They know the enemy more than we do.”
Mary Ellen met Claudia half-way. Her youngest sister was rubbing her eyes and stretching. “It’s time.”
Claudia yawned. “For what?”
“We have to unite.” Mary Ellen told her. She waited until Claudia entered the bathroom they shared before saying what was on her mind. “Sabrina is back – this time, haunting our dreams.”
“I thought Bonnie, Luna, and the Crusaders took care of her?” When Claudia began brushing her teeth, telepathy was the only way to talk.
“They did.” Mary Ellen explained. “But she’s still alive – somewhere.”
What do you mean, she’s alive somewhere? Claudia stared at Mary Ellen in wonder.
“Well, it seems not all the Dominionites perished when the Great Crusade ended with a flash of Ancient Mystic Magic.” Mary Ellen told her. “Now, we have to unite in the Circle.”
You realize Ariana and Luna haven’t been in the Circle yet, right? They didn’t grow up with us.
“I know that. Luna’s told me she’s been in a different kind of circle – with the Crusaders.”
Claudia rinsed her mouth. “Yeah, so?”
“We’ll work with it.” Mary Ellen replied, seeing her sister was growing tired of her stalling. “Hurry up, we have to meet Anna and the twins at the house.”
“I hope you’re right, Mary Ellen Woods.” Claudia replied with a sigh. “If not, we’ll all be doomed.”
Silently, Mary Ellen added in her mind, I hope so, too.
* * * * *
Minutes later, the sisters met up with Anna, Luna and Ariana at their old estate, which Ariana owned with her husband Derrick Reading. Ariana Reading put her infant twin sons to bed before meeting with her sisters.
“What’s going on?” Ariana asked Anna, knowing of her sister’s brilliant premonition.
“Don’t ask me – ask Mary Ellen. She’s the one who had the vision.” Anna said quietly.
Ariana and her twin, Luna Morehouse, looked at one another. Ariana was the one to say it. “You had a vision?”
“How?” Luna countered.
“Not how, but what. Or should I say who?” Mary Ellen told them her dream. “Sabrina’s still living – among the surviving Dominionites.”
“Where?” Luna asked. “I mean, we searched everywhere after the Crusade ended, just to make sure Sabrina, Orthos, and Damian hadn’t escaped.”
“We made sure they weren’t in hiding.” Ariana continued. “They were no where to be found around the old Dominion Gate. O’Dell and the Sisters even checked. Nothing.”
“They aren’t there.” Luna and Ariana chorused.
“I’m not saying they were.” Mary Ellen said. “What I’m saying is that we have to find them where no one has ever looked before.”
At that moment, there was a slam of the door. In came Derrick Reading and Ariana’s seven-year-old daughter, Kelina Erin. Kelina ran up to her Momma, baring gifts.
“Look what I drew for you, Momma!” Kelina cried.
Ariana took it, glad for the distraction. The picture was of a unicorn with a jewel under his horn. She recognized the unicorn as being O’Dell, the Elder Guardian of the Dream Realm.
“It’s O’Dell.” Kelina supplied, when her mother didn’t say anything.
“Wonderful picture, Kelly.” Ariana replied. “Have your Daddy Derrick put it up on the ‘fridge.”
A quick kiss on the cheek to Ariana told Derrick something was wrong. “Not that I don’t like your sisters – I love ’em – but why are they here now?”
“It’s a long story, Derrick.” Ariana replied. “I’m still waiting for Mary Ellen to explain herself.”
Derrick smiled. “I’ll leave then. Be careful, darling.”
“I will.” Ariana said simply, watching him go. Kelly followed.
“Why did he say that?” Luna asked. “He knows you’re always careful.”
Ariana shrugged. She looked to her older sister. “Any answers, Mary Ellen?”
“To make a long story short,” Claudia said, before Mary Ellen could go into another long-winded explanation. “We need to form a Circle and go to the Dream Realm. We have to find – and stop – Sabrina. Again.”
“She’s not giving up, is she?” Luna commented sarcastically. “Very well, I just need to run across the street and tell Shane where I’ll be.”
“Why should you have to do that?” Claudia replied.
“For your information, I just had a son of my own, if you remember.” Luna returned her sarcasm. “I don’t want my Earthly Protector of a husband to worry that Caleb Ryan won’t have a mother.”
Claudia held her hands up in surrender. “I give.”
“Meet us upstairs in my room.” Ariana replied. “We’ll unite in front of the Ancient Mystic Mirror.”
The sisters agreed.
The Woods’ were going to be in deep, with almost no hope for survival. Neither knew what kind of evil, disastrous schemes Sabrina the former Dream Maiden of the Dominion had planned.
They just had to wait – in fear.
Adams’ Grove Saga:
Winter has always been cruel to the weak. Sharon Adams thought to herself, placing blankets on her horses in the stable.
They sent her silent thank-you’s, nodding their heads and nudging her cheek as she pat them.
She went to her favorite, Stardust, stopping at him. “Is that better, Star?” She asked, petting the star on his head. The star was the origin for his name, but his demeanor was something of a bother.
Yes, Mistress. Much. Thank you. The horse sent back, eyes gleaming.
“You know, I’ve been noticing some changes in Twinkle, love.” Sharon said aloud. It was her special gift with animals, called Unicorn Magic, that allowed her to listen in and understand her horse’s thoughts. Twinkle, a butter-scotch colored horse, was a mare that usually like to play around.
What kind of changes, Mistress?
“I think she’s lonely.” Sharon whispered, just loud enough for the gelding to hear.
Ever since Mistress Kelina left, she hasn’t been the same. The horse relayed.
“Perhaps you can do something about it?” Sharon asked him, then shook her head, patting his.
This snow has got my coat bothered. I’m just glad it all ends soon.
“Well, old man, I’m tired of snow as much as you are. Too cold for an Ancient Mystic’s blood.”
Spring is on its way, Mistress. Just think of the possibilities!
Sharon laughed. “Yes, the possibilities….romance, maybe?”
Dare tease me, Mistress. Stardust sent with a twinkle in his eye.
“Doesn’t matter, though. Romance will never come my way.”
How can you say that? Stardust asked. Was it not Master Terry that took your heart, turning it around?
No buts, Mistress. He was the one to show you many a things.
Sharon smiled, remembering. “I seem to recall teaching him a thing or two myself.”
That was long before…dare I say it?
“You don’t need to remind me, Star.” Sharon replied. “It was before Rex threw him, killing him.”
I liked both Master Terry and Rex, Mistress.
“So did I. I wonder what possessed Rex to throw his Master?” Sharon mused. She shook her head again. “No time for thoughts. You were right, spring is near, and that means plenty of work is to be done.”
Something else is on your mind, is it Mistress? The gelding asked. Are you lonely as well?
“With you guys to talk to, I could never be lonely.” Sharon tried to convince herself.
Are you not lonely for human companionship? Perhaps one to talk to?
Sharon sighed, not looking at him. “You really know how to read my thoughts, don’t you?”
May I suggest Lady Guardian?
Sharon shook her head. Her niece was too busy with her own life. The Lady Guardian, Ariana Reading, was trying to raise herself, her children, and continue her quest of Crusading to the Dream Realm every night. “Lady Guardian has her own life.”
I only suggest her advice.
She thought more about her niece. “You may be on to something, old man. Do you recall six young girls who visited here some time ago, with the Enchantress?”
What of it?
“The Oracle Children seemed to love you, and feel at home here.” Sharon tried to explain to the gelding. “Even Tart, the tiniest, seemed to enjoy herself more.”
Perhaps if you go to Lord Guardian, he’ll let you bring them here again?
Sharon patted his back. “Maybe Grandfather would let me teach them a little of the Magic?”
You will never give that nonsense up, will you?
“I told you that long ago, Stardust.” Sharon teased him. “I am an Ancient Mystic. Not only that, I’m a teacher of the Magic. There has to be Magic around to keep enemies at bay.”
Are those not what the Crusaders are about? Stardust answered. Let them do their jobs, and let us alone in peace – without the Magic.
“Very well, if you insist.”
I know that tone, Mistress…Whatever you are thinking, keep us animals out of it.
“Will you relax, Star?” Sharon suggested to him. “The Oracles are Lady Guardian’s girls, and have to learn to control the Magic they have somewhere. Why not here, away from the rest of the world’s watchful eyes?”
The horse sighed, and Sharon headed back into the house after feeding him.
One scene: Tara Mae, 16, going for a ride on Midnight, Lady Guardian’s own horse. She goes to the stables and finds her sister Darlene crying, hiding in a corner of Little Star’s stall.
“I wouldn’t get to comfortable if I were you, Tart.”
Tara Mae, knowing who the voice belonged to, an old worker girl named Felicia, stands up. Felicia continues. “Oh, I forgot. Tart’s only your name.”
She sneers with a grin. “Go home, Felicia.” Tara tells her.
“Oh, but I am home. I’m more of a daughter to Sharon Adams then you guys will ever be.”
“I’m warning you.” Tara Mae supplies, standing up for herself and her sister. “Leave.”
“Or what?” Felicia laughs. “You’ll scratch my eyes out?”
The anger in Tara’s system nearly explodes, and she uses the Oracle Magic to place her enemy in a bubble. “Let me go! How?”
“Go away, Felicia, before I have to get nasty.” Tara’s soft voice echoed the stables. Darlene found herself by Tara’s side, holding her hand as she stands up against the enemy.
The girls hear Sharon’s voice in the distance.
“I sense magic.” Sharon replies, coming in and seeing the scene. “Felicia. I fired you. What are you doing on our property?”
“Nothing. Just visiting the horses, Mrs. Adams.” Felicia cowers, looking to the trio.
“Let her go, Tara Mae.” Sharon tells her. Tara obeys, and Felicia runs away, scared.
Now, looking at Sharon, Tara’s frightened. “I’m sorry, Sharon. I didn’t mean to.”
“Don’t feel sorry.” Sharon tells her, hugging both girls. “You stood up for yourself and your sister against an enemy. I’m proud of you.”
Tara Mae looks Sharon in the eye. “Really?” Sharon nodded, kissing both girls’ foreheads. “What about the use of Magic?” Tara asked.
“We’ll worry about that later, Tara Mae. For now, would you like to help me fix dinner?”
Darlene nods, but Tara shakes her head no. She wants to ride Midnight, finding comfort in the activity.
Later that week, Tara Mae meets a boy, who lives down the street. His name is Chris Kennedy. They become friends, and so on….
Ancient Mystic Crusaders Saga:
Hi. My name is Kelina Erin Reading. I am the Dream Realm’s Enchantress…
When I was thirteen and my brother Bradley was fourteen, we were part of a study group at Horizon Woods, Hill View’s own middle-school. My best friends at the time, Cara Richardson, Krysti Farthay, Samantha West, Josh Stevenson and Steve Edwards were a part of it, too. We were using the school library to use research in solving various puzzles. When I came across a newspaper clipping of something that happened years before, my Clairvoyance went nuts.
That something was known as the Hill View Bomber. The Bomber eluded police for nearly fifty years, leaving them baffled. He always left the same symbol behind: a smiling face shaped like a bomb with the word “Gotcha!” written below it in crude ink. According to the article, he’d killed hundreds of people. In my vision, I saw him as if he were standing in front of me. He was going to strike again, and soon. I had to do something. I had to stop him.
I gathered these friends together and did it. We caught him and were awarded by being called the Bomb Squad of Horizon Woods. That case was the first, initiating a new breed of Dream Realm Crusader into our world.
After we did that, it was time for something a little more interesting. We wanted a challenge, so the seven of us fled for the System in California. This is where we met up with Shannon, my much-older cousin. She gave us different jewels once noticing how my friends seemed to accept the fact our kind of Magic was real.
Bradley got a Pendant with the same jewel mix as my own: the onyx-opal. When things were at peace, the jewel would be the opal. When I was in danger, it would send him the signal and he would feel it in the onyx.
Cara, my best friend in the entire world besides Brad, got a heart-shaped red Amber, which we learned gave her the power of fire. Krysti got a heart-shaped yellow topaz, which gave her the power over the very air itself. Steve and Josh’s necklace stones were different. Steve’s was the emerald with the power over earth and Josh’s was the lapis lazuli, with power over water. Theirs not only did that, but Steve was Krysti’s Earthly Protector and Josh was Cara’s.
The only one of us that didn’t have a special element-related stone was Samantha. She was our Over-Seer. She had what the Ancient Mystics called Unicorn Magic, just like my aunt Aimee. Sam was given a Quartz Crystal to help hone her powers of Empathy. Aunt Aimee helped, seeming she was the Over-Seer to the previous Crusader team.
We had a blast learning about our new jewels, and even some old-fashioned fighting skills. The catch was this: once we left, it had to be kept secret. Momma made me place a special spell on four of them, Sam, Josh, Steve, and Krysti. It was called the Forgetfulness Spell and was more of a potion than a spell. I put it in their drinks and used compulsion to make them drink it. I felt bad for using them like that, they were my dearest friends, but Momma was right. No matter how close we were, they weren’t ready for the aspects of being Dream Realm Crusaders. In their minds, I told them we were at a college, seeing how it was like to live on campus. We were only thirteen, myself fresh from taking the Ancient Mystic Oath. When we went back to Hill View, it seemed all was forgotten between them. Cara, Brad and I were the only one’s to know what truly happened.
For three years we were the Bomb Squad of Hill View’s Horizon Woods and soon Hill View High itself. By then, our little group sort of grew. By the time my Junior-year came around, we had not more than twenty-two members, most of them our closest friends.
Since the Bomb Squad does play a small part in this story, I’ll keep the explanations short.
First off, Samantha moved when we were in our eighth-grade year. We split in our own separate groups. Brad, Cara, Josh, Steve and I hung around each other a lot, because we were so close and all (though only Cara, Brad and I knew why). Krysti felt left out without her best friend Sam there, so she befriended some bullies, Richie Carmichael, Johnny Kincaid, Peter Valentine and Devin Jones. Sam was part of their group, too until she moved. They were playfully known as the Rebels. Two years ago, someone moved into Sam’s old house, hence Krysti had a new best friend. Kendra “KC” Clark. KC split up the Rebels, as did Steve’s cousin Adam Smith when he moved in the same year Sam left. Richie, Johnny, and Devin started a gang called the Deadly Dragons. Peter made friends with the shy Adam and Krysti made friends with KC.
My family brought a pair of twins into the group. Kymm and Carrie Parker were officially my adopted cousins, since Momma and their adopted Mother Caroline Parker were adopted sisters. Kymm was the intellectual twin while Carrie was the troublemaker. Of course, being who she is, Kymm was nosy and decided to get into our little investigation team in Horizon Woods. She was a member of the school paper, the Hawk’s Eye View. She brought Carrie with her when Carrie discovered there were cute guys involved. (She didn’t know Josh and Cara were more than best friends at the time.)
Lesal DeRose, daughter of my mother’s good friend Delilah, wanted in on it, too. She and I became good friends when we met and stayed throughout. Lesal’s best friend Miranda English was shy and didn’t really like a lot of people around her. Lesal managed to drag Mandy into it, too. Once Mandy met Adam Smith, there were sparks flying. A match made in heaven!
The same year KC moved in, a rock-star wild-child named Allie Watson moved in the house across the street from the Parkers. After our first case in Hill View High, she gladly joined in, just for the adventure. Soon, a member of our homegrown band, European Harmony, came to finish his high school education and Allie had her heart into Zach Keiths.
Along the way, we gained many new members. Liz Edwards, Steve’s twin sister, was plagued by her instincts and added her two-cents in. As was my colleague on the Gazette, Ericka Blumeburg. Soon, Peter Valentine, Devin Jones, Amanda Jo Applebee (my twin cousin), her boyfriend Brock Cavanaugh, Miranda’s other best friend Sandra Kendricks, Lesal’s boyfriend Quincey Payne and even Samantha when she returned last year had all joined in the group. We were known around school as the Bomb Squad of Hill View High, and around the city as the Junior Detectives of Ray County.
By this time, the special necklaces we wore had become nearly dormant. When the first case in three years was over, something happened to wake their magic up. First was Cara, who found out first-hand how hers worked. Next was Sam, then Steve. After our second case came Josh, and our eighth came Krysti. Brad already knew his kind of Magic since we grew up together. By then, all the Crusaders were honing their powers, worried about another Crusade once Momma explained everything to them.
They were worried for good reason. Then again, so was I.
Something was happening in the Dream Realm and only the new Crusaders could do anything about it. It was our turn to fight the demons of the Unknown and Dark Area, but at what cost?
Let me start at the beginning.
Our official Crusade began the summer before my senior year. The moment I pulled my car into the driveway, I knew something was wrong. My mother’s coupe, Derrick’s jeep and even Daddy’s Cherokee were there, but I couldn’t sense them anywhere around. Nor could I sense my brothers or sister, or even my two cousins, Amanda Jo and Stacy.
Something was definitely wrong.
I grabbed by book-bag from the trunk and headed inside. The door was wide open, which made my detective’s instincts wake up. Before walking in the door, I looked across the street and next door. Daddy’s house was silent, which was unusual. Aunt Luna’s was, too, how strange? As for Cousin Julie’s, nothing abnormal there. What about Matthew’s? Hmm, nothing there, either. The only houses that teased my sensors were Daddy’s, Luna’s and my own.
I walked inside, thinking nothing of it. No TV’s, radios, or even video games going. By this time in the afternoon, everything would be going at once.
I checked the house for my family. I headed to Amanda’s and my bedroom, wondering what was going on. Amanda wasn’t home, that’s for sure. I went to the twins’ rooms, along with Stacy’s. They were gone, too. My parents were gone, and the Mirror in their room didn’t give me any clue as to where they went.
No one was around. It was as if they had disappeared in thin air. I sat down on my bed and picked up the book I was reading at the time. I couldn’t concentrate on that. Instead, I had this eerie feeling something was really, seriously wrong.
Sure enough, Bradley barged into my room with a frantic look on his face. He was my boyfriend, and didn’t need an invitation to come over, nor did he need to knock anymore. We originally grew up like brother and sister, but it was soon told to us that he was adopted, and it would be okay for us to see each other romantically.
“Kelly, she’s calling for you.” Bradley replied, out of breath. “You’ve got to come with me.”
“Slow down, Brad.” I said. “What’s going on? Who’s calling for me?”
He stared at me and cried. “I thought you could sense things like this? Look at your Locket.”
I wandered over to the mirror and glanced into it. The Dream Locket around my neck was glowing a hot-red, telling me there was something terribly wrong in our precious Dream Realm.
I looked at his Earthly Protector’s Pendant, seeing it was glowing the same color.
“It’s Dad and Mrs. Reading.” Bradley breathed. “They’re out cold. Mr. Reading, Aimee, and the Morehouses are already there. Shadow’s taking control and sent me for you.”
“Slow down. I don’t understand.” I looked at him. He was rushing so fast I didn’t really know what to think. “What’s wrong with Momma and Daddy?”
“They’ve fallen ill. So has your aunt Luna.”
“Where are they now?” I asked. I was terrified then.
“Across the street at your aunt and uncle’s place. Come on!”
I permitted him to grab my hand and nearly drag me along for the short journey.
We walked in on my uncle Shane, cousins Caleb, Logan and Meredith, and Daddy Derrick holding hands with their eyes closed. Melody was beside them, and glanced up when we walked in, an emotionless expression on her face. She was only six, but she was smart. Bradley sat beside Caleb, placing a reassuring hand on my cousin’s shoulder. Meredith, only eight, had a tear in her eyes. I saw them, my Momma, Daddy, and aunt Luna lying on the couch-bed side by side. “Daddy Derrick? What’s going on?”
Derrick, who was her Earthly Protector, looked up. He stood and hugged me tight. “Oh, Kelina. Your mother has fallen ill, and we don’t know what’s going on. She’s been calling to you, telling us that you would know what to do once you were told.”
This was serious. I never let anyone but Momma to call me by my full name. “What happened? How did they become this way?” He didn’t answer, continuing to close his eyes and think of nothing but my mother’s health. I looked at their three silent bodies. “I can’t sense them. Their minds aren’t here. Their souls aren’t here. Its as if…” My voice trailed.
Somehow, I knew exactly what to do.
I kneeled beside my mother’s body and placed my hand over her Jewels Amulet. Closing my eyes, I chanted softly. “I am the Enchantress, She is the Lady Guardian. Where is she now?”
As if to respond, I saw a male demonic face. The male had bright red eyes and fangs like a vampire. He reached out to me with his long, lanky arms, and I saw his beastly claws. “Come and get me, Child! I dare you!” He cackled a long and vicious laugh, not even caring for the usual peace of the Dream Realm.
Who was he? I asked myself. He was in a different part of the Dream Realm. I didn’t know where, but it was a shadow of what the Dream Realm’s many Palaces, Kingdoms, and Provinces would be.
“I dare you!” The demon chanted over and over again. “I have Lady Guardian and her friends. Come and get ’em!”
I snapped my eyes open and pulled my hand back quickly. “She’s in the Dream Realm, but no where I have ever been.” I whispered, staring at my Momma’s silent body. I stood and backed away.
The room was filled with silence.
“Do you know what to do, Kelina Erin?” Daddy Derrick asked.
I stared, but didn’t have a clue.
Bradley seemed to sense the tension, because he came behind me and embraced me. “Are you all right?”
I turned. “No, and neither are they.”
“Be strong. You’ve been in situations worse than this, right Kelly?” Bradley asked.
I responded by clinging closer to him. I need his strength, too. “Will you go with me to find Momma?”
“Anything for family.” He replied softly.
I released him and went to Daddy Derrick, but he was in more pain now than ever. I couldn’t get him to help me. I saw that grief came over my uncle Shane as well, and Caleb could feel it. I didn’t know what to do.
“I’m going in.” Derrick announced.
“Me, too.” Shadow said.
“What if he gets you, too?” I asked them. “Don’t go. Please.”
“She’s right. They need you here.”
“You kids don’t understand.” Derrick replied, scowling. “I’m going in.”
It was starting. The pain and revenge was beginning to grow. I could feel it.
I panicked and raced out of there in tears. Bradley didn’t follow at first, but I guess my thoughts were out in the open for him, and he came to me.
I never noticed he was there.
I raced to my room and pressed my palm against the vanity mirror. It was a special mirror, part of the Ancient Mystic Mirror the Ancient Mystic Sisters gave us themselves. “Take me to the Dream Realm. I need to find my mother, Lady Guardian.”
My eyes first glanced at my reflection, my teary eyes and my reddish-brown hair in a ponytail. They caught the glow of my ring and my necklace growing hot. I stared at the ring until the world started to spin around me. I closed my eyes, and wished for wherever it was my mother was being kept.
I turned around and opened my eyes. I didn’t recognize this place. It wasn’t like the fun and exciting place I knew and always loved to visit.
I was scared here. I didn’t sense anything but emptiness here, and everything was gloomy and melancholy. I didn’t know what to think of this place.
“Welcome to my parlor said the spider to the fly.” I heard someone cackle behind me.
I turned to see the demon-being in the vision. “Where are my parents and aunt Luna?”
He shook his head. “Ah, ah, ah.” He pointed at me. “Not yet, dear Child. You have a far better thing to look for than your dreary Momma.” He came closer to me, changing from the wolverine-man creature I saw to a respectable young man being.
“Who are you?” I asked again, this time aloud. I stared at him, unable to help myself. His face scared me, and I didn’t like that feeling. Usually, I was able to control my Dream Realm, but now, I couldn’t. I didn’t know how.
I’d forgotten how.
“I am called Dominick.” He introduced with a grin. “You are in what is called the Dark Area. No one really ventures this way, but the Earthbound insane.”
He grabbed onto my arm and I stood unmoving, unable to for some reason. He had me in a spell, mesmerized. “I was here before you, even Child.”
“How do you know of me?” I whispered. “I don’t know you, and I know for a fact neither do my parents or aunt.”
“Ah, but I do know of you.” Dominick told me. “The Companions talk of you and your precious mother as if you were somebody special. Disgusting.” He released me and turned his back. I still couldn’t move, so I stood there, silent, listening.
“You really think I like hearing about two Earthbounds I have yet to meet?” Dominick replied nastily.
“How is it I’ve never heard of this Dark Area until now?” I asked him, suspicious. I placed my hands on my hips and stared at him. I had no idea where my courage came from, but I had it none the less. “Momma never spoke of it.”
“Well, Child. You’ve heard of the Dominion, yes?” I nodded silently, and Dominick continued. “After the Wars, all that was left was a grey mist, and not a soul would wish to venture past the old Dominion Gate. A few of us had the courage, and decided to start a new place to live, away from the dreadful goody-goodys of the Dream Realm’s Provinces.”
“In other words, the dark side to the Grey Area.”
“The very shadows of the Grey Area.” Dominick said. “Lord Maximaniac is a coward compared to Lord Bane. For it is Lord Bane I serve, not some pesky Wizard Originator.”
I nodded, accepting his explanation. He managed to avoid the tender subject until now.
“Where are they?”
My confidence was coming back slowly, and I found out a little about him by his demeanor. I could sense the evil in him, growing with each passing moment. He reminded me of a younger Orthos.
He stood silent, as if slapped. The table had been turned, and he didn’t like it one bit!
He opened his mouth to say something, but changed his mind. Dominick stared me down, as if trying to drain any power or confidence from me.
“Answer the question, Dominick.” I demanded, angry now. “Where are they?”
“Not so fast, Child.”
“Stop calling me that. My name is Kelly Reading, and I am no longer a child.”
“I knew that, but that is what I was told to call you.” Dominick replied. “By your mother, of course.”
“Than where is she?” My anger was boiling over, but I hid it inside of me. I didn’t want the Dark Magic deep inside to take over me. My angry thoughts had let it peek out. I could feel the bubble rising in my soul.
Dominick smiled. “Dead men tell no tales.”
With that, he disappeared. In his place, was a small piece of fabric. I sighed as I picked it up. I stood up, but the world began to spin again, and I returned to my bedroom, practically strewn by the power of the Mirror.
I clutched to fabric in my hands, at first not knowing what happened. I cursed to myself until I saw Bradley and the twins beside my bed. I glanced at the clock. It was already night time. I realized I had been in the Dark Area for over four hours.
“Where’s Mommy?” Mark asked me.
“It’s a long story, boys. Right now, find yourselves to your bedrooms for some sleep for the night.” I told them.
Bradley stayed, looking concerned. “Are you okay? Do you want me to stay here with you?”
I looked at him and nodded. “Please, Bradley. Stay.”
He nodded back, kissing me. “I’ll be right back. I need to go home for a few minutes.” He stared at me. “I love you, Kelly Reading.”
I nodded. “I love you, too, Bradley Allen.”
With that, he left, and I headed across the street to check up on my parents and aunt Luna.
I found my step-father and uncle on the floor, unconscious. I looked to Caleb. “They went looking for them, didn’t they”
“They felt your pain, and decided to go to the Dream Realm.” Caleb replied.
“We told them not to, but they didn’t listen.” Meredith supplied.
“Now, they’re in Dominick’s hands as well.” I whispered, feeling defeated. I stopped. “Caleb, do you want to spend the night with us?” He nodded, and I told him to gather his things.
“I wanna come, too.” Meredith whined, hugging me.
“I’m scared, Kelly.” Logan whined.
“Shh,” I whispered in his ear. “It’ll be okay soon, I promise. Go ahead and get your overnight bag. Follow your brother and sister.”
“What about you?”
“I’ll be there soon, okay?”
My cousin nodded, racing off.
Sweet, innocent Meredith. This was going to be tougher than I thought.
Dominick found out about Daddy Derrick and Uncle Shane, and now he had them.
I heard a low, soft cackle, recognizing immediately it was Dominick. I didn’t know what to do.
Once Caleb came back to the room with his siblings, we headed across the street. But not before I whispered a Sisterhood chant for my parents, Ariana and Aaron, along with aunt Luna, uncle Shane, and Daddy Derrick especially. I sighed, hoping for the best outcome.
I headed in my house in a daze, with Meredith beside me. I saw Bradley had brought his casebook with him.
“What are you going to do with that?” I asked as I shooed her to find Caleb and the twins.
“I was hoping we would be able to figure things out on paper.” Bradley explained. You know, play CASE?” CASE was Crime, Alibis, Suspects, Evidence. It often helped us with our cases. It was a shorter version of the old detective game, “What do we know?”.
“We don’t have a crime, we only have the suspect: Dominick.” I said. “Besides, if we write it down, Dominick will be able to see exactly what we’re doing. Maybe even come after me.”
“Oh.” Bradley said softly.
I sensed he was disappointed about it, so I took another approach.
We sat in the living room, talking. “I really appreciate the help, I do, but what can you help with?” I asked.
“Anything for you, Kelly. Name it, and it’s yours.” He looked into my eyes and kissed me. “That’s because I love you.”
I held his hand and thought for a moment. “Dominick has my family, and I want them back.”
“He doesn’t have me, dear.” I heard a voice from behind me. It was my Daddy’s twin sister, Aimee. “I don’t expect he’ll really want me, either.”
“Why do you say that, aunt Aimee?” I asked.
“I was never in the Crusade, remember?” Aimee asked me.
I nodded. “I remember. You were just the Over-Seer.”
She was quiet. “If you wish, I could take the kids off your hands until this all blows over?”
I smiled. “I’d like that. I wouldn’t want to scare them, aunt Aimee.” That’s when I thought of something. Melody had been beside us when I traveled, but was gone now. Stacy was still nowhere to be found. “Where are the girls?”
“Melody was scared, so Stacy brought her over to my house to be safe.” Aimee replied.
I sighed. “How did you know what was happening?”
“Your father told me. Your mother had fallen ill earlier today, and Aaron immediately sensed it. He rushed over there after your step-father told him. I didn’t know what to think when my own brother didn’t come back.”
Aimee took a tissue out of her pocket and blew her nose. I stood up and hugged her. “It’ll be all right, Aimee. I promise.”
“Thank you, sweetheart.” Aimee supplied. “Scott and Tricia are terribly understanding, considering they’ve never had to do this kind of thing before.”
“I know. What about the young ones?” I asked. “How are they handling it?”
“Angel is helping with Grace, Zander and April.”
“She’s a good kid.” I told her. “You’ve raised her well.”
“Thank you, Kelly.” Aimee said. “Go and get the boys and Meredith.”
She wiped the tears from her eyes while I rushed upstairs to get them.
“Where are we going?” Mark asked.
“Are you going, too, Kelly?” Caleb asked.
Andrew was silent, holding Meredith’s hand. I could tell he knew what was going on.
“The five of you are going to see Aunt Aimee.” I replied.
Mark, Logan and Caleb cheered, rushing off.
Andrew stood silent. Meredith stared at me.
“Andy, didn’t you want to see aunt Aimee?” I asked him.
“I know what’s going on, Kelly. I know Mom, Dad, uncle Aaron, aunt Luna, and uncle Shane are in the Dream Realm.” He said sadly, nodding in the direction his brother and cousin had gone, “But I won’t tell them if you don’t want me to.”
I hugged my little brother. “We’re only seven years apart, but it feels like only minutes. How wise, my Andrew James.”
His eyes looked sad, almost ready to cry. “Momma used to call me that.”
“She still will, even after I tell her how brave her elder twin son has been during this disaster.” I told him.
He looked at me. “I love you, Kelly.”
“I love you, too, Andrew James Reading.” I smiled. “Go on, get out of here.”
He didn’t rush off, but he did go, with her following. Andrew was always the smart level-headed twin, so serious and true.
Before they left with aunt Aimee, she made me promise to keep her in touch with all that was happening. I agreed and the six of them were on their way.
“I was just thinking.” I heard Bradley say as I closed the door. “What do they have in common, besides you?”
I slumped next to him on the love-seat. I shrugged. “I don’t know.”
“What did your mother and Derrick used to be?”
“They were Crusaders. So what?” I asked, then it came to me. “That’s it!” I cried. “Who else?” Bradley fed to me, eager.
“Katherine and Kitten’s Claw, and Toby Snow. Not to mention one of the heros, Wolf Stargazer.” Brilliant, I thought. “We have to Crusade to the Dark Area of the Dream Realm.” I told him, determined. I grabbed his arm this time, and rushed him to the Ancient Mystic Mirror.
“Hold my hand and close your eyes.” I instructed, and he did so.
“What?” He didn’t finish his question.
“We’re going to visit a few friends.” I told him.
I then turned to the mirror, placed my palm against it and called out, staring at my ring.
“From the bottom of the deepest oceans
to the top of the tallest tree,
take us to the Dream Realm,
where we really wish to be!”
In moments, the world was spinning again, this time landing us in the middle of the Canine Woods. I let his hand go. “Are you okay?”
“Undamaged.” He laughed. “What about you?”
“Fine, as usual.” I told him. “I often visit my friends in the Dream Realm, so I’m used to it. Are you sure you’re okay?”
He nodded. “Just a slight headache, that’s all.”
“Normal reaction to the Ancient Mystic Mirror.” I told him.
“Where are we?”
“Look around you, Bradley.” I told him.
“Looks like the Canine Woods.” He supplied. “It’s been too long to tell.”
I kissed him. “Welcome back to the Valley of the Dogs.” I smiled. “I feel like a tour guide.”
“What did we come here for?” He asked, getting me back to our mission.
I found my way to Stargazer Castle, where I found the Page, Red Wolf Moondancer teaching the children how to use a crossbow. I called to them. “Red Wolf! Celine! Shelly!”
Celine saw me and waved. “Hi, Kelly! Hi Bradley!”
Her English was distorted at times, for she was half-Balinese Cat, half-Timber Wolf, a mixture of both her parents’ breeds.
“Hey Celine, Shelly.” Bradley had to smile at the girl’s enthusiasm. “Keeping them busy, are you, Page?”
“That I am, Crusader.” Red Wolf grinned back. He and Bradley got off to a bad start when they first met, but we made them get along. Now they have a playful competition for fighting arts. “Young Shelly here is by far the best archer I have seen in years.”
“Yeah!” Shelly laughed. “I am getting stronger by the day!”
“Great.” I said.
“How are you today, Enchantress?” Red Wolf asked me.
“Not so good, Red Wolf.” I turned to Celine. “Where are your parents?”
She pointed to the castle. “In there.”
“Thanks, Celine. See you later.” I called as we entered the castle. “Follow me, Brad.”
“You got it.”
It wasn’t a castle, really, it was just a house big enough for the four of them. Wolf had inherited it from his parents, who were killed in the first Wars. When he wed Katherine Hawk, he decided to move in and start his own loving family.
“Kat? Wolf?” I called into the air. “It’s Kelly and Brad. Where are you?”
“Out here, dear.” I heard Katherine’s voice reply from the den. “Come in.”
I found her in the den, talking to Wolf.
“If it isn’t the Enchantress of the Dream Realm, Kelina Erin and her Earthly Protector Bradley Allen?” Wolf teased with a smile. “What brings you here?”
I told them what happened to Momma and the others. “We were hoping you’d have an idea of where the Dark Area is, or what it is.” I told them.
“If any Companion knows about the Dream Realm, it would be you, Lady Katherine.” Bradley replied softly with a grin.
Katherine smiled at him.
“He does have a point, darling.” Wolf teased, nudging her cheek with his muzzle.
“Well?” I asked, wanting to get this over with as fast as I could.
“I have heard of it, but have never been there, as many Companions like myself.” Katherine said softly. “How about you, Wolf, darling?”
Wolf shook his head. “Sorry. I know nothing of the Dark Area.”
“Do you know of a fellow that goes by the name of Dominick?” Bradley asked them.
“Dominick. I remember him well.” Katherine went into another trance and began to explain. “After the second Wars, which we began to call the Crusade, all that was left of the Dominion was a cloud of grey dust. This is when we noticed a place no one had ever ventured before. No one, not even uncle Orthos, knew of this place. Soon, because of Lord Maximaniac, all Companions began calling it the Grey Area. I remember there was a lad with a very evil, challenged mind. He was different from the rest of the Grey Areans, for he was much darker.”
“One day, he came to the Palace of the Ancient Mystic Sisters, where I was staying with Kit at the time, and introduced himself, claiming to be even more powerful than our uncle. I did not know what to think. He disguised himself as a black panther and tried to seduce me.”
By this time, Wolf was staring at his wife. “When did this happen?” He growled softly.
“Now, Wolf, don’t be angry with her. I’m sure it wasn’t her fault.” Bradley said out-loud, not really meaning to.
“Who are you to say anything?” Wolf stood and faced Bradley.
I was afraid for Bradley’s safety. “Wolf! Brad! Stop, please!” I cried, getting in between them. I stared seriously at Wolf. “He didn’t do anything wrong, and you shouldn’t take whatever anger you’re feeling toward Dominick against him.”
“After all, darling, he is a Crusader as well.” Katherine supplied, standing up with me. “We are all on the same side.”
Wolf backed off.
“If anything, we should use our built up anger to get rid of Dominick.” I replied.
He nodded. “Aye, and I believe Young Bradley should not have even come with you here. He does not know what the Dream Realm is really all about, and he could get both of you in a lot of danger.”
“I know the Dream Realm, Wolf.” Bradley began, but Wolf snuffed at him, making Bradley stop.
I looked to Katherine.
“Maybe it would be best if you sent him home, Kelly.” Katherine suggested lightly. “He does not belong here now. It is not safe.”
I sighed. “You’re right.”
“They’re right?” Bradley spat at me. “What about me? I’m your boyfriend and will do anything to make sure you’re safe and happy. Even if it means fighting with the enemy.”
“I know, but it’s not safe for you right now.” I explained.
“I suppose it is for you?” Bradley replied nastily.
I tried again. “You’ll do anything for me?” He nodded. I took his hand and look deeply into his eyes. “I want you to return home and go to aunt Luna’s. I need someone to be there for them, looking after them. Will you do that for me?”
“Yes, but what about your safety?” He asked, kissing me. “I want to ensure that you’ll be okay against Dominick without me. I love you too much to lose you.”
I looked down. “I’ll be fine. I’m with friends here, and they will make sure I’m okay.” I told him. I squeezed his hand. “Whenever you want to know what’s going on, just close your eyes and think of me.”
“I’d do that even with my eyes open.” Bradley replied with a smile. We kissed. “How will I get home without you?”
I looked at Katherine and Wolf. Kat pointed to her lips.
“Kiss me, Bradley.” I replied. He did, and I placed my hand on his heart. My ring glowed, and a moment later, he was gone. He was safe where I sent him; straight to aunt Luna’s house.
“Now what, Katherine?” I asked, suddenly feeling depressed. “I can feel them slipping away, but I also feel their strength.” I ventured to the window and glanced outside.
“Everything will be all right, Kelly. I promise.”
“I hope you’re right, Katherine.” I sighed, closing my eyes. I felt her tender touch, hugging my shoulders, trying to comfort me.
I opened my eyes, and stared out the window of the Stargazer Castle.
I sensed him suddenly.
“He’s here, Katherine. I’m scared.” I said simply, not taking my eye off the woods outside. I started to walk outside, to be able to sense him easier.
“Who is here?” Wolf exclaimed.
I turned to look at him. “Dominick. He’s watching us from somewhere, listening to our every word. He senses my pain, and wishes to harm me.”
I embraced myself, shuddering.
“Wherever you are, Dominick, come out and face us like the scoundrel you are!” Wolf was angry now, and I didn’t want to cross his path now. He was on the prowl.
Dominick appeared in front of us then with a big smile on his face. He was disguised as a Timber Wolf, like Wolf himself. “Who calls upon the great Dominick?”
“I do.” Wolf challenged, facing him. “Stop this charade and tell us where you have Lady Guardian and her friends.”
With a simple nod from Dominick, the proud Wolf was practically thrown against the castle.
Katherine fled to his side. She knelt down and felt her husband’s head. “How can you do this to us? We have done nothing to you, yet you treat us as the enemy.”
I felt for her, unable to move.
Dominick laughed at Katherine’s teary statement. “What about you, Child? What do you think of me?”
I was afraid. Where did all my courage go? I closed my eyes and thought of my mother, and immediately, my courage came back. “I think nothing of something that takes pride in harming others.”
“I am sorry to hear that, Child. Because I have harmed no one.”
“Stop the innocent act, Dominick.” Katherine came to my side once helping Wolf inside the house. “We are not amused.”
“‘We are not amused.'” Dominick echoed with disgust. “What a pathetic statement, dear Katherine. I’m going to have to deal with you too then, am I?” He stared at her, his eyes glowing hot-red. She cowered away like a scared pussy cat. Katherine raced inside the house in tears.
“How can you do things like that?” I asked. I didn’t cower away when he tried his stare-down on me. “I’m not scared of you. I want to know where my mother is. Now.” I demanded, crossing my arms.
Dominick tried something else. He changed into Bradley Allen!
“You can’t fool me, either Dominick.” I replied seriously. “Do you really think I’m that stupid?”
He continued to try his tricks on me, from trying to seduce me to acting like he was an innocent pawn in a cruel game of chess.
I pushed away. Crossing my arms over my chest and closing my eyes, I summoned the most powerful device I knew of . It was to be used in emergencies, and in the Dream Realm only.
“From the eastern winds” I pointed to the east,
“to the western stars,” I faced the west, then my gaze went straight ahead.
“I summon the powers of the Ancient Mystics to be my own. I am the Enchantress, daughter of the Lady Guardian.”
I raised my arms to the sky and cried with my all, “Come unto me!”
He stepped away, frightened. Dominick didn’t know what to expect, and truthfully, neither did I. He tried to cover up his own gutless reaction. “You cannot scare me with that Ancient Mystic Sisters mumbo-jumbo. I know better.”
“So you think?” I challenged lightly. The spell was working already. I could tell. I looked deep into his dark-red eyes and made him turn back to the repulsive being he was meant to be. He was really a mere cat, so small and unnoticed. That didn’t change my tune much.
“You think you’re so special, just because Guardian has named you the Enchantress.” He replied nastily. “You’re nothing to me. Nothing.” He growled.
“You know what, Dominick? You’re a bigger nothing than I am, because you have no confidence.” I spat, on a roll. “I’ll expose you for what you really are – conniving, cold-hearted, lonely, misguided, and even a little soft.” With each word, his face took on a gentler expression. I stared deeper into his eyes. “You want everything for yourself, even to be a part of this glorified, wonderful Dream Realm, and it’s tearing you to shreds.”
Dominick stared at me, amazed. He didn’t say anything at first, and only the smirk on his face told me I was right.
“Being Earthbound, you were a lonely, desolate man, ending your life with only yourself to blame.” I summed up his Earthbound experience. “Once you did, however, you ended up here, in the Dream Realm’s Dominion, giving yourself the name Dominick when the Dominion was destroyed by the Crusaders: My parents, Step-dad, aunt, and two uncles. One of which is now living here permanently, dying of a broken heart.”
Dominick smiled, as if he knew something I didn’t. Then his smile turned to a frown. “What is your point, Child?”
“Where are they, Dominick?” I asked, staring into his red eyes. I saw his soul was empty, and dark like the Dominion used to be. “Where are the Dream Realm Crusaders? Tell me now.” I demanded.
Dominick cowered away, defeated. “Come. Follow me.”
He led me to the Canine Woods again. He stopped and produced a ball from his hands, sending it to the air to produce a doorway. “Ladies first.” He replied.
“Oh, no. I don’t trust you, Dominick. Go.” I commanded.
“Very well. As you wish Enchantress.” Dominick replied, stepping through.
I made sure it was safe before stepping through it myself. Sure enough, it was. The doorway disappeared and reformed into the bright blue ball of glowing light. I was amazed.
“Follow me.” He said simply. He led me through many tunnels, with only the glowing light to see by. The light served as a lantern that stayed slightly ahead of us.
We halted when we got to a big door. It looked like the dungeon doors I had seen in many of my past nightmares. I placed my hand on it. It felt like rotted wood, and had a golden brass X across it. The keyhole looked like it had gone through hell and back.
Momma and her friends were in there all right. I could feel them.
“In here.” He told me, then commanded the ball of light to go through the keyhole and open it.
The door creaked open slowly, revealing the many secrets it held.
I gasped when I saw them in a cage, dirty, dingy, and defeated.
“Momma!” I ran to her. She reached her hands out of the cage to try and embrace me.
“Kelina Erin! Help us get out of here!” Momma whispered softly so Dominick wouldn’t hear.
I nodded, and turned back to the demonic beast himself.
He was smiling at me. “You’ve seen them, Child. Now join them.”
To my surprise, a cage was lowered onto me. I wasn’t able to move an inch. “Let me go!” I cried. “Let us all go! We’ve done nothing to you!”
“Ah, but you have.” He replied, facing me with a grin. “You see, you Crusaders got in my way, and now you will pay.” He turned around, on his way out. “Tah-tah, everybody.”
Dominick left then, slamming the door behind him.
“You tried, honey. That’s all that counts.” Daddy told me when he was sure Dominick had left completely.
“That’s just it. I tried, and failed.” I replied, then thought of something. “How did you get in his way? I don’t understand, Momma.” I slumped in my private prison, feeling sorry.
“It’s a long story, Kelly.” Momma told me. “I took away his hopes for reigning the Dream Realm after Orthos was destroyed. As you know, Elder Guardian named me the Lady Guardian, to take his place when the time came.”
We were silent until Aunt Luna opened her mouth.
“The time has come, the walrus said, to talk of many things.” Aunt Luna recited, starting into space. It was some code I knew little about.
Momma joined, smiling. “Of shoes and ships, and ceiling wax, of cabbages and kings.”
“What does it mean, Momma? Luna?” I asked them. “What does all that have to do with this?”
Aunt Luna explained. “When your mother and I met in the System, Shannon told us that.”
Momma interrupted. “Shannon told me ‘the time has come, the walrus said, to talk of many things.’ Little did I know then how that little sentence would change my life forever.”
“What do you mean?” Uncle Shane asked. “I was there, too, and to this day, I thought it was just a saying.”
“It is, Shadow.” Daddy Derrick replied, using uncle Shane’s old code-name. “Only, it means something.”
“What, though?” I asked them. “I’m confused.”
“The day of reckoning for all has arrived.” Daddy replied with a tight grin. We stared at him and he continued, “How our actions spoke louder than words for us, we would soon find out.” He looked at me. “Did he say any tired, old sayings to you?”
I thought about it. “‘Dead men tell no tales,’ and “‘Welcome to my parlor,” said the spider to the fly.’ I shrugged. “Basically, that’s it.”
“He remembers them from being Earthbound, I am sure.” We heard a voice reply from behind us.
I turned to see Katherine, Wolf, Shelly, and Celine in their own cage. With them was Kitten’s Claw and Toby Snow.
“Kat! How – what – what happened to you?” Momma gasped.
“It’s a sad story, my Lady Guardian.” Katherine replied, telling Momma the story of my visit. She turned to me. “After I ran to the house, I was frantic for the safety of my kits.” Katherine hugged her daughter, kissing her son’s head. “I searched the Wood for them, and even called their names, but they were nowhere to be found. I rushed back into the house to get Wolf, but he was gone as well. I stood in one place, frightened. I felt alone then, just like I was when I was banished so long ago. I covered my face, hot tears finding their way through the rims of my eyes. Standing in one place, I felt my legs give out and I started crying in vain. I felt the world spinning in front of me, and the next thing I knew, I was here, with Wolf, my children and sister by my side.”
“Where did Red Wolf go?”
“He left us, all alone.” Celine said.
“Poof! Disappeared.” Shelly replied.
“Coward.” Wolf growled.
No one knew what to say. I didn’t move, and I knew neither could they.
I felt so depressed. I had so much energy, so much courage one moment, and the next moment, it was all gone. We, the Dream Realm Crusaders and I, sat in silence. We had the power, but not the strength or the determination to use it. Why?
I closed my eyes and sent a special message to Bradley Allen, recalling when Momma told me she did the same thing when she was caught by Damian. It was for the love of a certain woman, my mother, that brought them to rescue her. Daddy Derrick got the message and raced to her rescue. I hoped Bradley Allen would know to do the same.
I could sense someone in the shadows of the cave. Either my Momma couldn’t, or it didn’t matter.
“Hello?” I called into the air. “Who’s there?”
The shadow drew closer to me, and I recognized right away who it was.
It was Panther Grey, also known as Uncle Mark!
How he had come to the Dream Realm as a Companion after dying of a broken heart in our world.
“Panther! What are you doing here?” I asked. “How did you find us?”
He smiled, not saying a word. He disguised himself as a cunning black cat, then back to a human before our eyes.
Panther produced a ball from his own hands, and looking at me mischievously, he formed the ball into a key, unlocking our cages. Momma, Daddy, Daddy Derrick, Aunt Luna, uncle Shane, and the Companions hugged one another. I clung to Momma, then thought of Panther.
I had missed him again. He disappeared into the blackness. I smiled at Momma, who smiled back. “That’s the way he’s been since becoming a Companion. He’ll remain mysterious until he decides to come out of his shell.” Momma explained, hugging me. She looked into the air and mouthed a silent “Thank you.”
We needed to go home.
I hadn’t defeated Dominick yet, I would come to find out. That horror was only the beginning.
— at the end.
“You know, Momma, I wish I could’ve met Sabrina. Maybe I would’ve been able to help out in the Crusade?” I asked her.
She, along with Derrick, Daddy, Uncle Shane, and Aunt Luna, glared at me.
I shrugged my shoulders. “What did I do?” I looked at Bradley, who looked at his hands.
“You used Wish-craft.” He told me.
I just realized my mistake, and gasped. I had wished for Sabrina’s return.
Suddenly, Momma held her head, and I heard a female cackling in the air.
I began to feel sick.
What had I done?
Curse of the Wishing Stone Saga:
A Silent Celebration
I guess I should begin this story with a little background, just to set the pace.
For one, I am called Amethyst Theresa by my orphanage siblings. I have long brown hair, even though it’s constantly in knots (through no fault of my own, of course). I’m thirteen-years-old, and live in a rat-infested dump called Shore Point Home For Children, ran by this really mean witch-woman named Mrs. Gertrude.
Everyone hates Mrs. Gertrude, and I don’t blame them.
Anyway, I have a twin brother, Aaron Theodore, and used to have a really special, close friend named Ariana Moon, but she ran away a few months ago after finding out she was pregnant with Aaron’s child.
I don’t know the details, but I’m guessing they did it to feel safe.
We were the Three Musketeers – all for one, and one for all. When Mrs. Gertrude was on a rampage, or one of her slaves were in the right mood, we’d be chased. My ‘big’ brother, Aaron would shield us. There was a time Ariana herself, with her special wish-craft, would save us.
Mrs. Gertrude was in a bad mood, and decided to make our day a living hell. (Sorry if I swear a little, I don’t mean any harm, really.) We were playing, like any eight-year-old’s would play, having fun and screeching. Well, she is the old school type that lives the saying “Children should be seen and not heard.” That day, she’d caught us.
Ariana held onto both my and Aaron’s hands, closed her eyes and made a wish. Before we knew it, Mrs. Gertrude was in a sneezing hysteric! It was so funny, I couldn’t help laughing.
That was then, this is now.
Now, Mrs. Gertrude doesn’t mess with Aaron and myself, but instead stays away.
Since Ariana ran away, I’ve noticed she has been more tolerant, but not much more, of her children.
Also since then, I’ve noticed my brother in a constant depression, not wanting to do anything, not being himself.
Let me explain.
Aaron and Ariana were best of friends, with myself of course, which was rare. We had a kind of link that no other sibling could have. In a way, the three of us were more mature than our siblings.
Anyway, before she ran away, Aaron would stick to her like glue. She was so vulnerable when she first came. So afraid, so alone, so insecure. Everyone of our orphanage siblings would stay away from her because of her exotic eye color – silver-blue. She was very sensitive when she first came here when she was only five. Aaron was the first one to take her hand and lead her to a secret spot only he and I knew about – the attic. I swear, Ariana Moon didn’t talk aloud until she was nearly eight! Three years without a peep.
Somehow, Ariana would speak to us only in her mind. It was really cool, and we had fun with it at times. There are a lot of things I loved about Bonnie, but that’s not what this story’s about. She’s just the cause of my brother’s depression.
It all begins when Aaron and I were sitting, making up our own language together. I was trying to cheer him up, but it didn’t work. I didn’t think anything would cheer him up but seeing her again. I would be proven wrong.
“Amethyst Theresa.” I heard the witch call my name. “Aaron Theodore. Come with me.”
We looked at each other and held hands.
We followed her to the office across the hall, where we found a couple waiting.
I gasped. Could these folks want to adopt us, at such a mature age? I thought to myself. By the look on Aaron’s face, I could tell he was thinking the same thing.
“I’d like you to meet your birth parents, the Schmidt’s.” Mrs. Gertrude replied.
Even with my ragged dress, I curtseyed. I nudged Aaron, and he bowed.
“Nice to meet you.” I replied.
The woman, with her Sunday-best dress and white pearls around her neck, held out her hand. I took it. “It’s so nice to finally find you, my precious children.”
Aaron wasn’t impressed. He scowled. “How do we know you’re telling the truth?”
“One shouldn’t ask such profane questions, son.” The man, with his peppered brown and white hair, glared at him over his glasses. His muscular frame boomed over us. He reached into a portfolio and took out two birth certificates.
Sure enough, I read the names. “Aaron Theodore Schmidt” and my own “Amethyst Theresa Schmidt,” born on the same day, five minutes apart. Like I said, Aaron was older.
My astute brother was silenced, and I smiled, catching the grin of our ‘mother.’
“Sorry, Father.” Aaron cowered, testing the words on his tongue. “Why did you abandoned us?”
“We’ll talk about it over dinner at the house.” Mother replied. She turned to Mrs. Gertrude, who had been listening. “I hope all the paperwork has been signed?”
“Yes, of course Mrs. Schmidt. Definitely.” Mrs. Gertrude buttered. “Will you be needing their things?”
Mother looked at us. “Well?”
I shook my head. The only thing I wanted to keep as a reminder was the bracelet Ariana gave Aaron and I some time ago. “No ma’am.”
Aaron repeated it. I could tell he was thinking the same thing. “No ma’am.”
In no time, we’d left Shore Point Home For Children, forever. Never to return again.
I couldn’t have been happier.
A Very Strange Find
That was two months ago.
I was still adjusting to the fact I had parents. Actual, real life parents.
Such a thought had been rare for every orphan at the hell-hole. It was our dreams to be adopted, if only to stop the abuse from Mrs. Gertrude.
Now, it was Aimee’s and my reality.
If only I could tell Bonnie. She’d be ecstatic.
Ariana was my best friend. I loved her as well, but could never get it out of my mind that she’s still out there, somewhere, waiting to be found.
I missed her when she left the orphanage, and still do now. I don’t know where she is, but at least I know she’ll be okay. The bracelet that binds us will keep us together in thoughts.
The Three Musketeers, we called ourselves. Being the male of the trio, I shielded my twin Aimee and best friend Ariana from any abuse Mrs. Gertrude had to offer.
I write these words, thinking of her now, and how I wish I could see her again.
Aaron, where are you? Are you okay?
I hear her thoughts in my mind now, and smile. She’s still thinking about me.
Yes, I sent back to her. I’m fine, and so is Aimee. The circle of hate has been broken.
She left then, and my eyes caught Aimee searching the backyard tree for something.
No doubt she’s looking for another animal pal to befriend. Aimee’s always been the sentimental fool. I love her though. Not like I love Bonnie, but being my twin.
You know what I mean.
“Aaron! Come quick!” Aimee’s high-pitched voice interrupted my thoughts.
Taking the notebook with me, I run to my twin’s side.
“What’s up, Aim?” I ask her.
She points to a single jewel in the ground, buried.
“Help me get it out.” Aimee replied. I obeyed.
The jewel was at least six inches either way, with a bright red center. Around a red circle lay a message.
This be the Stone to which wishes are grown,
Be careful what you wish, it may become your own.
Only two wishes granted, to thou who set free
The magic and wonder inside of thee.
Aimee saw it, too. “That’s peculiar.”
“We get any wish we want?”
“Two in fact, it says.” Aimee replied with a grin.
“Do you know what you want?” I asked her.
“I already have what I’ve always wanted.” She said. “A loving family and my twin brother to share it with.”
I blushed. “How sweet, Aim.”
“Thanks.” She said. “Know what you want?”
I shook my head. She knew of Bonnie, of course, but I couldn’t wish for her return. Not now, anyway. “Let’s take it inside and put it in our bedroom. We’ll think about it later.”
Right. It only seemed that easy.
If only it were…
The Chosen One Saga:
Amethyst’s New Power
Amethyst Theresa worried for her childhood sometimes. She, along with her twin brother Aaron Theodore and best friend-almost sister Ariana Moon were only three of Mrs. Gertrude’s orphaned slaves. The three of them called themselves the Three Musketeers, with their motto being the same as the fictional Musketeers of the same name. If one of them were sad or in trouble, the other two would be there to help them, end of story.
That’s what Amethyst always thought until the day Ariana Moon announced she was pregnant with Aaron’s child. She was playing in the tree-house with Aaron when Ariana Moon barged in.
“Aaron, I have to tell you something.” Ariana Moon announced, a panicked expression on her face.
Amethyst watched as the two of them silently conversed in their minds.
Aaron looked from side to side, making sure no one else was around. He turns to Amethyst and replies. “Promise not to say anything to anyone?”
She nodded, agreeing. Ariana told them what made her so panicked.
“How far along?” He and Aimee ask at the same time.
“A month. Now I have to run away, Aaron. I have no choice.”
Amethyst watched her twin’s face turn from concerned to sad.
“Oh, no!” Amethyst gasped. “What’re we gonna do?”
“Help me escape, Aimee. I need help.” Ariana told her. Aimee was Amethyst’s nickname. “Your kind of help.”
Amethyst stared at her almost-sister, than her brother. She couldn’t refuse to help Bonnie. She was a Musketeer. “Okay, I’ll help you.”
They discussed a plan until curfew, with the girls continuing long into the night hours. After three days, it was announced Ariana Moon was to run away as soon as she started to show.
It took six months of preparations between the three of them. Aaron became sad and sullen as the months passed but still cared for Ariana when he could. Amethyst could feel the tension between them, but kept her mood upbeat so Mrs. Gertrude wouldn’t suspect anything. Ariana and Amethyst worked on old-fashioned healing techniques when Ariana was ill. For those six months, all Three Musketeers had to act calm and cool, covering their tracks if some of the other kids were suspicious.
One night as they lay in bed, with Amethyst on the top bunk and Ariana on the bottom, Ariana had a surprising thought.
“I wish there were some way we could stay together when we’re far apart.”
Amethyst had been thinking of that one, too. For eight months now, she’d thought about it each night. She had been reading a lot in the library about ways, contemplating in her mind what to do. She thought of Ariana’s special gifts of Magic, and the bond they’d had.
It was at that moment she came up with the perfect thing. Amethyst was quiet as she climbed down the ladder to Ariana’s bunk. “There may be.”
Ariana was aware in moments, holding her breath excitedly. “How?”
“A pact of some kind.” Amethyst whispered. “We could make a pact using your Magic to link us together.”
Ariana took her hands. “You really think that will work?”
“It’s worth a shot, isn’t it?”
Amethyst was surprised when Ariana hugged her. “Of course it’s worth it.” Ariana pulled back. “You and Aaron mean the world to me.”
“You don’t know how it feels to hear that, Ariana Moon.” Amethyst whispered, hugging her almost-sister once again. “We’ll tell him in the morning at breakfast, okay?”
Ariana nodded, laying back on her pillow.
Dominionite Crystal Saga:
Kelina Reading, Kelly, stared into space, while her teacher droned on and on about the principal of dangling participles. Her fingers fiddled with the Dream Locket around her neck, and she closed her eyes.
“Child, you must return home.” Came the careful voice of a Dream Realm Companion friend of hers, Katherine Stargazer. “Your studies are much more important if you pay attention.”
“I’m sorry, Katherine, really, I am, but I’m bored.” Kelly complained, playing with a ball of magic she’d produced. “I wish…”
“None of that talk now, Child.” Katherine interrupted her, knowing of her special brand of ‘wish-craft.’ “Go home, Kelly. Or else I tell Lady Guardian you have been daydreaming in class again.”
Kelly gasped and the ball disappeared. “Oh, please don’t tell Momma. She’ll be furious with me.”
“Will you go?”
Kelly sighed, knowing she’d gone too far with Katherine. “I’ll go back.”
In moments, she’d returned to class, only to find her classmates leaving.
She found her best friend Cara Richardson talking to her boyfriend Josh Stevenson and his best friend, Bradley Allen just outside the classroom.
“What’s up, guys?” She asked with a yawn.
“You sound tired.” Cara noted. “Did you go without us?”
“Doesn’t she always?” Remarked Kelly’s best friend Steve Edwards, coming up to the group.
Kelly stuck her tongue out at him. “Not on purpose, mind you. Let’s meet after school and I’ll talk about it at my house – okay?”
They agreed, and the bell bonged its five-minute warning.
Bradley walked with her to her next class. “What’s going on?”
“I can’t tell you here.”
“Not even in your mind?”
Kelly smiled at her boyfriend, stopping in their tracks. “You won’t give up, will you?”
“Not a chance.” Bradley teased. “Besides, I have a right to know.”
He had a point – he did have a right to know. He was her Earthly Protector, sworn to protect her from harm of the Dream Realm and her own world.
She sighed. “Promise not to tell the others?”
“By the ‘others,’ you mean the Bomb Squad, right?” Bradley asked. She nodded. “Just making sure.”
“Okay, take my hand and listen closely.” She playfully demanded.
Sabrina’s back in town, and it’s up to us to catch her. She relayed to him.
Earthbound, or in her own world?
Somehow, she’s in both. Only, I don’t know how to locate her, since she’s not totally Earthbound.
Sounds intense. We’ll talk more later, okay?
Kelly nodded, and kissed him. “See you later, Bradley.”
There, he left her in front of the girls’ bathroom doors.
She entered to find her sworn enemy, Cara Daniels and her club’s rivaling clique, The Unicorns, gossiping. Lillian Straus, Hill View’s own snob queen, was smoking a cigarette.
“You’d better put that thing out, Lillian.” Kelly demanded, trying to get to one of the stalls. The Unicorns blocked her path. Kelly wanted so much to use her Magic, but knew it was wrong to. “Please move.”
Shelly Clark grinned, her braced teeth gleaming. Her blond hair bobbed as she shook her head in laughter.
“Who do you think you are, barking orders?” Lillian scoffed.
“Knock it off, Lillian, before I give you something to scoff about.” Kelly demanded, frowning.
“Ooh, I’m so scared.” Lillian and Cara Daniels laughed together.
That’s when Kelly noticed the necklace around both their necks. It looked vaguely familiar, but she couldn’t place it, until…
That’s it! Kelly thought to herself, remembering her Momma’s story of the Dream Realm Crusade against the Dominionites.
Kelly kept the thought to herself and asked them. “Where did you get those necklaces, you two?”
“From a really cool friend of yours.” Lillian told her, turning to Cara. “What was her name?”
“Sabrina. Why should you care?” Cara answered.
“Jealous because she didn’t give you one?” Lillian taunted.
By that time, the other Unicorns had left, leaving Cara, Lillian and Kelly alone in the bathroom.
“No, I’m not jealous.” Kelly stared at the dark crystal around Cara’s neck. She made the grave mistake of touching the crystal, just to make sure it was the right one.
Sure enough, as her hand touched it, Kelly’s Dream Locket glowed, and her eyes closed. Knees buckling, Kelly Reading had a horrible vision. She tried to cover her ears, as to not hear the evil screeches coming from the necklace’s power.
“What’s wrong with her?” Cara Daniels asked, staring at her strangely, not bothering to do anything to help.
“She’s just being a loser. Come on, let’s go.” Lillian replied.
The two of them left then.
Kelly was all alone with the vision of the demon both she and her mother had fought and defeated time and time again.
The Dominion’s own princess, Sabrina, was back indefinitely.
To her rescue came Cara Richardson.
Cara took her shoulders and whispered a soft chant in her ear in order for her to come back to reality. She led Kelly to the sink and stood aside as she washed her face.
“What happened just now, Kelly?” Cara whispered, comforting her.
“Sabrina’s back.” Kelly replied. “Only, not in the way we thought.”
“I thought –” Cara started, but Kelly shook her head.
“I don’t know the details, yet, but I do know this. The Crusaders have to go to the Dream Realm together and talk to Katherine. She herself has told me a little of what’s going on. It’s time for us to Crusade again.”
“If we don’t?” Cara asked the question, just in case.
“If we don’t, we’ll be dead before Spring Break.” Kelly warned. “Somehow, Sabrina gave pieces of the Dominionite Crystal to Cara Daniels and Lillian Straus. That could only mean one thing: there are three others out there, somewhere, and we have to find them.”
“If we fail to get all five segments of the Dominionite Crystal before they’re put together, we’ll die.” Cara continued, as if reading her best friend’s mind.
“Exactly.” Kelly replied. “Not only that, but the Dream Realm will suffer as well, and you know what that means.”
“Your mother will become the Dream Realm’s Guardian before her time.” Cara whispered.
Kelly nodded. “We wouldn’t want that to happen, now would we?”
Cara shook her head and gulped.
Changing the subject, Kelly replied. “I’m okay now. Let’s get to class before they miss us.”
Ancient Mystic Wizards Saga:
Antony Woods, the youngest of Susan and David Woods’ children, stared deep into his self-made spell-book. He’d been collecting his own secret spells, keeping them, just in case. He dared to practice such delicate and complex magic around his live-in girlfriend, Kendra Reading. Even though her brothers Derrick and Jake knew the Ancient Mystic secrets, Kendra did not.
His voice was a whisper as he hid behind the garage with his caldron late at night.
“Tora Tia Mora Day
“Tutsi Fruitsi, Come What May
“The garden of my darkest fears
“Lay deep with my soul
“Let me ride my forgiven tears
“So as I may take control.”
His caldron lay before him. Reaching for a vile filled with hounds’ tooth, he took one out and dropped it in. A vile of special dust was in his other hand.
“Hounds’ tooth for my wild side
“With a breath of Unicorns’ dust”
He dropped it in as well.
“May it save me, help me, surround me,
“With the ultimate Ancient Mystic trust.
His final words were said as he closed his eyes and opened his arms.
“Come unto me!”
A flash of light blinded him for a moment, as a cloud of smoke filled the air. As his eyes readjusted, a vision of a unipeg stood before him.
He recognized the unipeg and bowed. “My Lord Guardian. What do you wish of thee?”
It was Guardian O’Dell, Lord of all the Dream Realm’s Provinces and Kingdoms. “You called upon me, young Ancient Mystic.”
Antony stood in awe. He’d done that? “How?”
Guardian smiled. “You are a born Wizard.”
“I don’t understand, my Lord Guardian.”
“By the Ancient Mystics, you are a Wizard.” Guardian tried to explain. “For years, you have been curious about your magic, correct?” Antony nodded. “Just now, you summoned me, with it. I must say, you have learned well from Lady Guardian.”
Lady Guardian was Bonnie, Antony’s older sister who would ultimately take Lord Guardian’s place in the Dream Realm. Right now, she was Earthbound, helping the Dreamers of the night when she patrolled.
“I – I – did?” He asked, staring at Guardian’s jewel. What he saw gave him the creeps, yet intrigued him. “Your jewel, My Lord. It shows –”
“Yourself and other Wizards fighting with magic in the Grey Area.” O’Dell answered. He then explained. “In order for the wizards to fight, they must first be brought together.”
“What may I do to help you, my Lord Guardian?” Antony knew he was important to his Guardian. “I will do it, gladly.”
O’Dell smiled. “Tis just what I wanted to hear.” He explained what needed to be done, and he listened with attentive ears.
Caleb Ryan Morehouse peeked in on his mother. He watched as she waved her arms and chanted to herself. In moments, the room was aglow with a brilliant yellow color.
Caleb was intrigued. I wonder if I can do that? He thought to himself.
“What are you doing, Caleb?” Whispered his younger brother Logan.
“Watching Mom, now be quiet.” Caleb answered softly.
His brother was not only quiet, he disappeared to another room, leaving Caleb watching in amazement and wonder.
A hand touched his shoulder, making him jump. He turned to see his father frowning at him. “Caleb, you know better than to spy on your mother when she’s performing magic.”
Logan hung behind his father, scared of what Caleb might do now he found out who tattled.
Caleb stood, frowning at Logan. “I’m sorry, Dad. I didn’t mean to.” He turned to his mother’s image, but continued to speak to his father. “I’m just interested. That’s all.”
“Come with me.” Shane Morehouse, known as the Shadow to all his friends, led his sons to the livingroom.
“Can I do stuff like that, Dad?” Caleb asked as he sat on the couch.
For once, Shane was speechless. “I don’t know what to tell you.”
There was a knock at the open door. They looked up to see Antony. “I do.”
“Uncle Antony!” Caleb and Logan cried happily. The boys both hugged their uncle.
“What are you getting at, Antony?” Shane asked his brother-in-law.
“The Ancient Mystic Magic.” Those three words answered it all.
Shane knew all about Ancient Mystic Magic, but couldn’t perform it. Only those born of the Ancient Mystics – Enchantra, Challandra, and Sibylline – could. His wife Luna was a daughter of an Ancient Mystic Sister, Antony’s mother Susan. Susan was the Daughter of an Earthbound Ancient Mystic Sister, Dixilynne. Dixilynne was one of Enchantra’s daughters.
“What about it?” Shane asked.
Antony didn’t answer his question. Instead, he answered Caleb’s. “To answer your question, yes, you can do that. I just don’t know how.”
Shane smiled, shaking his head. “Well, that’s assuring.”
“Let me explain.” Antony started. “Lord Guardian came when I called him, only I didn’t know I called him at the time. I saw five Ancient Mystic Wizards fighting in the Grey Area against some demon I don’t know. Both of your sons were a part of that fighting team. If it’s okay, Shadow, I’d like to take them with me.”
“What is it about?” Shadow asked.
“The Magic. I don’t know what’s going on yet, but by the sound of his voice, I could tell it was important.” Antony explained.
“If Lord Guardian himself says it important, than I agree.” He turned to his sons, who were looking at him eagerly. “Go ahead. I’ll tell your mother where you went.”
“Thanks, Dad!” They chorused and disappeared out the door with their Uncle Antony.
In moments, they were gone, and Shadow sighed to himself.
“I hope they’ll be okay.” He whispered. Turning, he met Luna down the hall. “Oh, Luna. The funniest thing just happened.”
“I was afraid of this.” Luna said as soon as Shane was finished.
Across the street, as Antony was talking with the Morehouses, Andrew James was meditating in his room.
In his mind, Andrew saw himself using magic to fight against an ugly toad creature.
He smiled. If it could really happen, he’d be happy.
As he finished the beast off, he heard a door slam from outside his mind.
Snapping his eyes open, Andrew replaced his glasses to his face to find his twin brother, Mark-Antony, standing over him.
“What’s up, little brother?” Andrew sighed. Mark was always interrupting his quiet time.
“Mother wants you.” Mark said. “I think you’re in trouble for a change.”
Andrew followed his brother down the stairs.
Without saying a word, Mark and Andrew were greeted by their mother, the Lady Guardian Ariana Reading. Mark left them.
“Yes, Mother?” Andrew asked.
“I know you’ve been practicing magic lately.” Her voice was tight and tense, which surprised him. She was usually pretty fun, and had a pretty cool sense of humor. She was usually easygoing.
Andrew gulped. “I’m sorry, Mother.”
“No need to apologize.” Ariana said. “You just need to tell me when you do.”
Andrew watched as his mother’s thin mouth turned to a smile.
“Welcome to the Ancient Mystic Magic family, Andrew James.” She hugged her son. “I want you to listen to something.”
“Anything, Mother.” Andrew said quickly.
“My brother, your uncle Antony, is on his way over. In fact, he’s right across the street with your cousins Caleb and Logan. Watch over Logan, Sweetie. I have a feeling he’s going to need you to help him with it.”
“What’s going to happen today, Mother?” Andrew had to ask.
“That I can’t tell you.” Ariana teased. “I want you to behave yourself, understand?”
Andrew gave his mother a kiss on the cheek. “Don’t I always?”
Ariana had to laugh at her son. “Yes, my Andrew James. It’s just a mother’s precaution.”
The doorbell rang.
“Go on, answer it.” Ariana replied. She stood as he opened the door to face Antony and Caleb. “He’s ready to be a Wizard.”
“I knew I didn’t have to say anything to you, Bonnie.” Antony smiled at his older sister. “You always know what’s going on, and that bugs me to bits.”
“Why do you think I do it?” Ariana teased back. She turned to her son. “Listen, my Andrew James. I want you to be careful out there. Understand?”
“Yes, Mother.” Andrew obeyed, hugging goodbye.
Once Antony and his nephews were someplace private, he said. “Take each other’s hands.”
“Why?” Logan asked.
“Are we gonna do what I think we’re gonna do?” Andrew and Caleb asked at the same time.
“The Ancient Mystic Powers of Travel.” Antony Woods smiled.
“Where are we going?” Andrew asked.
“The System. We have to talk with Martin, Shannon’s son.”
“Cool!” Answered Caleb. He took Andrew’s hand.
Before either of them could move, a voice called out. “I’m coming with you.”
They turned to see Jonas Crawford, another young Ancient Mystic cousin.
Antony opened his mouth to say something but was interrupted.
“The visions, the dreams.” Jonas replied softly, coming up to the group. “Dad won’t explain them so I want to find out for myself.”
The group looked at each other. Andrew nodded.
“It’s true. His father is Melody Crawford’s twin Matthew.” He supplied. “They moved to Hill View not too long ago. Since then, it would seem their powers are growing.”
Antony nodded. “Very well. Get ready to travel by Magic.”
Jonas gulped. He took Andrew’s hand, who took Antony’s. Once Antony took Logan’s, Caleb joined in. Jonas took Caleb’s other hand and Antony led the chant.
“We are of the Ancient Mystic Hood,
“Our minds and souls and hearts are good.
“Take us now to the Sister Shannon,
“At the System, openhanded.”
The boys closed their eyes, and in no time, were in front of the office of Shannon Ryan-McNathaniels.
Antony knocked only once when Shannon herself answered.
“Antony! A wonderful surprise!” Shannon cried, hugging him. She noticed the other boys and hugged them as well. “What brings you here?”
“Ancient Mystic Magic.” Antony replied.
Shannon shushed him. “Please, don’t talk about it here. Nick is still recovering from the Crusade – and that was years ago.” She started to walk. “Follow me.”
“I don’t mean to be rude, Shannon, but we need to see Martin.” Antony said.
Shannon stared at her cousins’ pleading eyes. “What do you need Marty for?”
“The Dream Realm’s in trouble, and only Ancient Mystic Magic can help.” Andrew explained in a whisper.
“Why not have the Crusaders fight?” Shannon asked, knowing of each generations’ special group of Dream Realm fighters.
“Too risky.” Antony said, shaking his head. “O’Dell tells me the Grey Areans are ready to attack – this time, more fierce, and with their own brand of magic.”
“Maximaniac can’t control his own people?” Shannon asked. “Or is it Dominick again?”
“We don’t know.” Antony replied with a shrug. “O’Dell just told me to gather them together and he’ll explain how we can use our special Magics.”
“What of Maximaniac? Where is he in all this?” Shannon asked.
Andrew held his breath, remembering back when his sister Kelly had to get the Dominionite Crystal segments back to him in order for the Dream Realm to be back to order. The demon wasn’t as bad as he claims. In fact, Maximaniac was quite fun – taking from his old Companion persona, a playful clown.
“He’s in shock from the magic backfiring on him.” Andrew replied.
All eyes were on him. “What do you know?” Shannon asked her cousin.
“I had a dream last night. It quickly turned to a nightmare.” Andrew said. “Mother was able to shield me a bit from Maximaniac’s own magic. Only, he didn’t attack me. He reached out for me to help him. It turns out, his own people came together to revolt against him. How they got their magic back is still a mystery, even to Mother.”
“Interesting.” Shannon replied. “Something Lady Guardian herself can’t figure out.”
“Must be a pretty big mystery if she can’t solve it.” Logan replied.
“Your mom is so smart.” Jonas said. “She’s so powerful, too.”
“Only because she has to be.” Andrew replied.
“Mom tells me the Dream Realm is going to collide under the pressure.” Caleb said. “I don’t know about you, but I have a feeling O’Dell wants us – Andrew, Martin, Antony, Jonas, Logan, and myself – for something big.”
“All I know is that it has to do with our Ancient Mystic Magic.” Antony said truthfully.
“You guys have it?” Shannon asked, incredulous.
“O’Dell called us Wizards.” Antony nodded. “Where’s Martin?”
“He’s in the Common’s Room with Stacie, working on his studies.” Shannon replied. She turned to Antony. “Do you guys remember how to get there?”
They each nodded and left her.
The door to the Common’s Room had a sign – Do Not Disturb.
“How are we going to talk to him if he’s in there?” Logan asked his brother.
Caleb took the knob and turned it. “Like this.”
A young woman with long brown hair and glasses looked up. “Hey! Can’t you read?”
“Sure we can read, but we’re family.” Andrew quipped.
Martin turned and greeted his cousins. “What are you guys doing here?”
“We have something to tell you.” Antony replied.
“What is it?” Martin asked, excited.
“Can we talk to him alone?” Andrew asked Stacie.
“Sure, I guess so.” She rolled her eyes. “Well, this lesson’s blown. See you tomorrow, Marty.”
She left and Martin laughed. “She’s such a snob, but she’s cute.”
Caleb groaned at him. Jonas rolled his eyes and shook his head.
“Keep your hormones in sync, Martin.” Antony laughed with him. “We’ve got business to discuss.”
The five boys sat down after Martin locked door. He sat next to Andrew. “What’s on your minds?”
They explained about O’Dell’s troubles with the Grey Areans.
“What does he want with us?” Martin asked.
“We have to use our magic – once we learn to grasp it – to defeat them in their own territory, returning the Dream Realm to peace.” Antony said.
“Magic? You mean, what I do isn’t accidental?” Martin asked, amazed.
“Depends. What do you do?” Andrew asked him.
“Well, last night I didn’t realize when I was watching my partner, Serenade – her real name’s Sarah. Anyway, I was watching her dance class practice. I felt sorry for her when she couldn’t get the steps just right. She was so depressed, and was about to quit altogether. I closed my eyes and wished for her to dance perfectly.”
“That’s illegal use of the Magic.” Andrew told him. “It may have been nice, but it was wrong. If Kelly had done that in high school, she would have been grounded for life.”
“He did something nice for somebody else. Charity isn’t illegal.” Antony replied.
“It didn’t turn out nice.” Martin continued. “At the end of class, she couldn’t stop dancing. I ran to Momma and told her what I’d done. She was able to reverse my wish and return everything back to normal.”
“Did you tell Serenade what you’d done?” Caleb spoke up.
“I never got the chance. She was being trained by Papa.” Martin said regretfully. “You guys know what would happen if I mentioned it around him.”
“Yeah, he’d go into hysterics.” Antony relayed.
“What’s wrong with the Magic around Nick?” Logan asked.
The others stared at him.
Andrew told the story. “Long ago was the Crusade, just before you, Martin, Caleb and I were born. Cousin Shannon was one of the first Dream Realm Crusaders, and Nick was with her. He constantly had terrible nightmares haunting him after fighting, so he begged Shannon to stop Crusading. She did, just to save the sanity of her then best friend. She cared a lot about him then. Anyway, when the second-generation Crusaders were formed, they had a battle with an old nemesis. Sabrina, the then Dominionite Maiden of Dreams. Toward the end of the Second Crusade, Shannon and Nick told the younger Crusaders their story. Mother was one of them, with my Father as her Earthly Protector. Your father was part of the first and second Crusader Teams, and he was – and still is – your mother’s Earthly Protector.
“When all the Crusaders and their Companion friends met with Sabrina and her Dream Warriors at Hill View Cemetery, Nick and Shannon went with them. Sabrina first reminded him of his father’s death, claiming it were his fault. It wasn’t his fault he died – it was hers. She was the one to kill him on the plane.” Andrew explained in a trance. He tried to relay every word he’d heard from his mother long ago. “Stories of the Crusades were still going around like wildfire, and the Magics lived on. With every chant and spell Shannon casts against the terrors of the night, Nick gets scared. He doesn’t want to lose Shannon the same way he lost his father. Shannon’s all he has, along with you, Martin, and your sister Michele. That’s why they’re cautious with the Magic around him.”
Caleb looked down. “Looks like we’ve got a lot on our hands.”
“I’m sure together, we’ll be able to handle it.” Antony said confidently. He placed his hand in the middle of the table. The other boys did as well. He repeated the chant he’d said to bring O’Dell to the Outer-World.
“Welcome young Ancient Mystics.” O’Dell replied. His vision was that of a human male. “I assume Antony has explained the purpose of bringing the six of you together?”
“We want to help you with the Grey Areans.” Caleb said.
“I want to beat those bad guys.” Jonas replied.
“Have you called your Forces?” O’Dell asked them, to which strange looks were shared all around.
“You hadn’t said anything about Forces.” Antony pointed out
“What are Forces?” Andrew asked. “Are they that little ball of magic in us?”
“You are correct, Andrew.” O’Dell complimented. “The Forces is the Magic. In the Sisterhood, they have certain powers they use everyday. Only few of them have more special abilities than her sisters, such as your mother, Andrew. Within the six of you, there is a way to grasp and keep control of The Magic. That is where the Forces comes in.”
“In reality, the Forces are your inner voice which guide you in life. In your cases, the Forces is also Ancient Mystic Magic deep within. You each are the sons of a Sister. Tis through them, you have the Forces of Ancient Mystic Magic.”
“Antony, you are the youngest son of Susan. Now, neither of your brothers Christopher nor Kevin know about their Magic until tis time.” O’Dell turned to Jonas. “Your father was tormented by his Magic, a thing not even your Grandmother Angela could explain or understand. It turned against him when he ran from it.” He smiled at Andrew. “Andrew, you are one of the sons of the Lady Guardian, my successor. It would be natural for you to be surrounded and able to use the Ancient Mystic Magic at will. Your brother will soon be introduced to his Magic, as will yours, Jonas, but not for my purpose. Martin, your mother a first-generation Crusader. She helped me with her Magic to defeat my own brother, Orthos, with the other Crusaders younger than herself. Luna, your mother Caleb and Logan, helped the Second-Generation Crusaders finally defeat my brother and his children, Sabrina and Damian. She was able to tell Sister Shannon of the danger upcoming, from the dreams she had.”
“Knowing this, I name you the Ancient Mystic Wizards.” O’Dell christened them. “With your Ancient Mystic Magic power, you will be able to help fight the old Dominionites who have rebelled against the youngest of the Originators, Maximaniac. Stand and take the oaths.”
They stood, side by side according to age. Antony, Jonas, Andrew, Caleb, Martin and Logan. They knew what they were getting into with O’Dell’s wishes.
Ancient Mystic Knights Saga:
It hurt to talk about it, but Brakkon Hawk knew he had do something about the attacking Dominionites. They were quiet now, but who knew when they’d attack next? He sat at his throne, eyes squinted in thought. Lord Brakkon, he was now called, was frustrated, unable to lead his Epsilonians properly.
Sibylline noticed this right away. “If it would please My Lord, I could send for the jesters.” She suggested, bowing to her husband.
Brakkon sighed. “My Queen, my love, what can I do to fight without a force?”
She rose, suggesting. “May I suggest Lady Guardian’s successors?”
“Nay.” Brakkon looked into his wife’s eyes. “They know not of the Epsilon. The Crusaders know of the Grey Area and their own Dream Realm, just as their predecessors do.”
“What of the Ancient Mystic Wizards? Surely they can help?” Sibylline was almost about to give up. She sat at her own throne beside Brakkon.
At this, Brakkon shook his head. “The Wizards are of Lord Guardian O’Dell’s domain, not thy own. This you should know.”
Sibylline sighed. “Do you have an idea, My Lord? If so, please tell me. I have run out of them already.”
He continued to stare into space.
Suddenly, the jewel on Sibylline’s staff glowed. She took it, pointing the staff to the air. “Tell me, Great Staff of Ancient Mystic Magic, what do you see?”
In front of the royal couple came a cloud of pink and violet light – the colors of the Outer-World. Usually, if Sibylline’s Staff saw something to do with the Outer-World, it had to do with her sisters, Enchantra and Challandra. This time, however, there came a vision of two young men with silver-blue eyes, dark brown hair and one had a disturbed look on his face.
Sibylline and Brakkon watched as two identical faces conversed.
They recognized one boy as one of O’Dell’s Ancient Mystic Wizards, Andrew Reading. The other, his twin brother, Mark-Antony.
“What could be bothering you, Mark?” Andrew asked of him as the couple listened.
“I’m disappointed. That’s all.” Mark didn’t look at his twin’s eyes.
Andrew sat himself on Mark’s bed. “Care to talk about it?”
Mark sighed. “Our mother is the Dream Realm’s Lady Guardian, right?” Andrew nodded, and he went on. “Our stepsister Kelly is part of the new Dream Realm Crusaders, being its Enchantress, right?”
“You’re looming off the subject.” Andrew replied.
Mark ignored the reply from his brother. “Even you, Andy, are an Ancient Mystic Wizard – one of six Wizard fighters in the family.”
“Go on.” Andrew said patiently, though Mark knew he was losing it.
“Why is it, you get to have some kind of Ancient Mystic power, and I don’t?” Mark stared deep into his twin’s eyes. “For years, I’ve been the more rambunctious twin, playing commandos and getting dirty while whom I thought was my loser twin brother had his nose in textbooks. We’re going to college in the fall, and what do I have to show for it – nothing.”
Andrew smiled. “Believe it or not, you do have some Ancient Mystic Magic. We get it from Mother, remember?”
Mark was genuinely confused. “What do you mean?”
“We each have a small bubble of Ancient Mystic Magic inside us, being the offspring – children – of the Lady Guardian.” Andrew tried to explain. “Just because I’m a Wizard doesn’t mean you don’t have the same kind of magic inside you. Call the Forces.”
“Your inner voice. The Forces are what guide you in life, as Lord Guardian has told me long ago.” His brother looked confused still, so he explained in less jargon, and more to his brother’s slang. “Think back to karate class in middle school.”
“What about it?”
“We were made to meditate, right? To clear our minds of every possible distraction in order to pay attention to the Master.” Mark stared at Andrew, who just smiled back. “Meditate and search deep within your soul for something that will invigorate you so much, it literally becomes you.”
“Explore it in your mind.” Andrew tried to explain what O’Dell had told him. “In time, if you keep meditating and playing with it, your own Ancient Mystic Magic will become you.”
“I warn you, though, dear brother.” Andy replied.
Mark knew he was in trouble. Whenever Andrew called him ‘dear brother,’ there was bad news to follow. “Give it to me straight.”
“Be careful, be respectful of Ancient Mystic Magic, and most importantly, learn to control it.”
The vision in front of Sibylline and Brakkon faded, returning to her staff.
The royal couple were mesmerized in thought.
A soft voice interrupted them. “My Lord? My Lady? What is on your minds?”
Sibylline shook out of her trance and turned to her princess. “Princess Sarabeth, I did not sense you coming. Proceed.”
Sarabeth bowed to them. “Your Lordships, I was wondering what had your attention so intently, you could not hear me calling your names.”
“Did you see the vision, child?” Lord Brakkon asked.
“Aye. The Earthbound twin brothers of the Enchantress.” Sarabeth replied, rising. “What are your thoughts of the vision?”
Sibylline spoke up to her adopted daughter. Sarabeth was really Enchantra’s youngest daughter, but when the Dominionite Master killed her, he sent her to the Epsilon to live eternally. Sibylline and Brakkon took her in as their own, who they knew were still living in the Dream Realm as Companions.
“My Lord has been trying to think of a way to fight the Dominionites. I have been trying to liven My Lord’s mood with suggestions, to all of which he declined.” Sibylline smiled. “I believe we have found the perfect way. Have you heard of the Ancient Mystic Wizards?”
“Aye, My Lady.” Sarabeth didn’t look into Sibylline’s mesmerizing eyes. “The Wizards were an answer to Lord Guardian O’Dell’s wishes. They helped with the Grey Areans.”
“What are you suggesting, My Queen?” Brakkon spoke up with a grin of his own.
Sibylline continued. “The Wizard Andrew is correct. His twin brother does have a little Ancient Mystic Magic within himself, he just has to look. Why not do as the Earthbounds say?” She thought hard before replying, “‘Kill two birds with one stone’ by helping Young Mark-Antony as well as ourselves?”
Sarabeth laughed, clapping. “Brilliant, My Queen.”
“Yes, darling. Tis a wondrous plan.” Brakkon was satisfied by his wife’s suggestion. “Explain in more detail, so I may better understand.”
That she did.
It would be that night young Mark-Antony would roam where his mother had warned him not to go.
“What harm could it do?” He asked himself, entering the Ancient Mystic Mirror to the Epsilon. “Kelly does it all the time and she never gets hurt.”
Be careful… Came his brother’s voice echoing in his mind.
“I will, Andy. You can trust old Mark. Don’t worry so much.” He said aloud, though he was alone. Realizing this, he laughed. “Listen to me – I sound loony. Talking to myself when there’s an adventure waiting all around me.”
Be Aware… His brother’s voice continued.
“Stop that already!” He cried into the air. Shaking his head, Mark continued on, watching his step. He made sure he didn’t step in any muddy goo that was on the ground.
“Gross.” He muttered. His hand lazily touched a nearby tree to catch himself if he should fall, but all he got was more goo on his hands. “I can tell this path isn’t taken often.”
Of course not, Young One. Came another, more feminine voice to his mind.
Mark turned sharply, only to come face to face with a maiden. Her hair was black as night, as were her eyes. She looked like she jumped out of the Renaissance Period.
“Hello.” He managed. “Who are you?”
“The name is Sarabeth. Come with me.” She started to walk.
“Wait – Why should I?” He called after her. She walked even faster. “What’s the hurry?”
“Lord Brakkon and Queen Sibylline are expecting you.” She called behind her back.
“How did you project your thoughts into my head?” He asked, though he already knew the answer. She never answered him. He caught up with Sarabeth, who he could see was just smiling. He placed a hand on her shoulder, hoping to slow her down.
She stopped abruptly, pulling away from him. Her smile was gone. “One must never touch a princess.”
“Princess, please.” Mark scoffed, but she turned on her heal and stomped off.
“I’m sorry, Sarabeth.” He apologized. “I shouldn’t have said that.”
Without stopping, Sarabeth called. “I accept, now hurry Young One. We must not be late, or Lord Brakkon himself will lynch us.”
“You’ve got to be kidding. Lynching? That went out in the days of King Arthur!”
“I hate to ‘burst your bubble,’ Young One, but in the Epsilon, what you call the Days of King Arthur and Merlin, is actually where you are.” Sarabeth stopped in front of a castle.
Mark was awed, but confused. He didn’t know what she meant, but it sure sounded good.
Sarabeth smiled. “Come along, Young One.”
“If you don’t mind, Princess, please call me Mark-Antony, or Mark.” He said.
“As you wish, but to us, you will still be Young One.” Sarabeth replied.
She led him to a chamber, to which he saw a pair of monarchs.
He recognized the woman – she was Sibylline, a very powerful Ancient Mystic Sister who started a revolution with her brilliant Magic. It was her Magic that was in his blood, pulsing through his veins. It was also her magic that intrigued him.
He bowed, not thinking. “Sibylline, I come to you, through Princess Sarabeth.”
“Rise, Young Mark.” Sibylline said. “My Lord Brakkon and I have a proposition for you.”
Mark looked into her black eyes and saw a vision of himself with armor and three other Earthbounds, fighting with Magic and might put together.
He didn’t know what to think as she explained what was on her mind.
Whatever it was, he was quick to volunteer for upcoming adventure.
Ancient Mystic Creatures Force Saga:
“Corrine! Corrine!” Her mistress called her from another room. “Where are my slippers? My feet are getting cold!”
“I’ll fetch them, Mistress. Right away, Mistress.” Corrine Blackhawk called back. I wish you would rot and die, Mistress. She thought in her mind with a pleasant smile.
Quickly, Corrine fled to her Mistress’ room and fetched her slippers, placing them at her Mistress’ feet. “Your slippers, Mistress.”
“Don’t just stand there, bow down and put them on me!” Her Mistress commanded sharply.
Corrine did just that, then stood.
“I didn’t tell you to stand. Kneel before your Mistress, Maid.” Her Mistress quipped rudely.
Corrine obeyed, not wanting to lose this job as well. She may have been orphaned from birth, but she wasn’t stupid. She knew she had it made as only the help to a stubborn middle-aged woman. The roof over her head kept her from the pain of the streets years ago. The food in her stomach, though the sometimes burnt leftovers from a week ago, was still that – food. The clothes on her back were cleaned regularly, as was her body – when she got time off from her Mistress to bathe.
“What else do you wish of me, Mistress?” Corrine never met her eyes.
“Nothing, Corrine. You may be excused.” The Mistress was fierce, though kind in some resorts – not many, Corrine often noted.
Corrine bowed, “Thank you, Mistress,” then left.
The chores were a hassle, being the only one besides the Mistress in the huge Mansion of Bella Donna. She was finished soon, and hid herself in her room with her pets.
“Hello, Archie.” She called to the sable ferret in the cage. His real name was Archibald DeFerret, but Corrine had nicknamed him Archie. “How are you doing today? Hungry? Playful? Or just plain bored?”
Corrine took the ferret from his cage and set him on her shoulder. “Wanna ride?”
As if to answer, Archie nibbled at her ear. “Stop, that tickles.” She giggled.
He obeyed his playful master, following her as she fed the fish – Tom and Jerry – put food in the cat, Jinx’s bowl, and refilled the water bowl in her ferrets’ cage.
“Where are your friends today?” She asked Archie, who jumped from her shoulder and answered by waking the others.
Picasso, a three-pound Chocolate Sable Ferret was the first to come up from the cage’s dark sleeping area. He greeted Archie with a playful tug of the ear. In return, Archie jumped and hissed.
“Archie!” Corrine scolded. “Picasso was just saying hello. No need to be rude.”
She watched as Archie backed away, ashamed.
Its as if they really know what I’m saying! Corrine remarked to herself.
That’s because they do. Answered a voice in her mind.
She gasped, standing.
In the doorway stood a reddish-blond-haired woman with silver-blue eyes and a strange, but interesting, locket on. It had a unicorn’s head surrounded by the a globe incased in a Dream Catcher web.
“I don’t mean to scare you,” the woman replied with a grin. “I was just watching you.”
“Who are you?” Corrine asked as she shut the cage.
“I’m sorry. My name is Ariana Reading.” She introduced, holding her hand out.
Corrine stood and stared at the ring she wore – an opalescent pink jewel. She watched as the ring changed colors – from pink to green. She gasped.
“You like my ring?” Mrs. Reading asked sweetly. “It’s a family charm.”
“Yes, ma’am. It’s beautiful.” Corrine couldn’t keep her eye off it.
Mrs. Reading laughed. “Nice to know good manners aren’t to waste nowadays.”
Corrine blushed. “Thank you, I guess.”
Mrs. Reading touched her shoulder, but Corrine jumped back. “Don’t be afraid of me, Corrine. I’m here to take you away from all this.”
Corrine looked her in the eye, only for a moment. “How did you know my name?”
“I dreamt about you.” Mrs. Reading replied softly with a smile. “For that, you should be honored.”
“What do you mean, dreamt about me?” Corrine asked.
“It’s hard to explain, so I’ll make it as easy as I can.” Ariana thought for a moment. “When you go to sleep at night, you dream, correct?”
“Do you remember those dreams?”
“Notice anything coincidental about them?”
Corrine was silent, then said. “Yes, ma’am, I do. They’re all in the –”
Ariana helped her finish her sentence with, “same world.”
“How do you know?” Corrine asked her.
“That world is called the Dream Realm.” Ariana explained. “It’s full of Companions – or, animals – creatures, both fantasy and reality, and different places. As with any place, there are good Companions and creatures, and there are bad ones.”
She stopped and sat on Corrine’s bed. Corrine sat next to her.
“I don’t understand.” Corrine replied.
“Let me explain, and you’ll understand.” Ariana continued. “I am called the Lady Guardian – an over-seer to all these different species of creatures and Companions. I also help keep young Dreamers, such as yourself, from being hurt by their nightmares. Unfortunately, I’m not actually living in the Dream Realm yet, so I’m called an Earthbound. That’s someone who’s bound to earth until its time for them to return to the Dream Realm to live eternally.”
“The Dream Realm sounds so complicated.” Corrine was in awe. “Tell me more. Such as, how you dreamt of me.”
“That’s easy. Being the Dream Realm’s Lady Guardian, each night I patrol my domain as I sleep. I happened to come upon a young unicorn, lost but adventurous, in the Ancient Mystic Palace Woods.” Ariana replied. “That young unicorn was you.”
Corrine gasped. “That was you I saw in my dreams the other night!”
Mrs. Reading, the Lady Guardian of the Dream Realm, smiled. “That’s right. I had a premonition of you the next day. I can see in your eyes now, you have a type of magic inside you only a very few have. It’s called Unicorn Magic.”
“I still don’t understand,” Corrine replied.
“You will soon, I promise.” Ariana said. “For now, come along. You can bring one of your animal friends with you, if you wish.”
“What about my Mistress? Won’t she miss me?” Corrine asked, secretly happy to be leaving.
Ariana shook her head. “Nope. I read her mind, and she was planning on firing you anyway. I just thought it would be the perfect time to come in and save you.”
Corrine stood silent for a moment, contemplating whether or not to go with this strange woman. She was gentle, kind, caring, and had a wonderful sense of humor. She had to admit, Mrs. Reading was pure fun.
Corrine stood and headed to the ferret cage, picking up Archie, who was waiting. “How did you know what I wanted, Archie?” She whispered to the ferret.
“Its part of your Unicorn Magic.” Ariana replied behind her. “Don’t worry about the essentials, I’ll take care of you and Archibald there.”
“How did you know what his real name was?” Corrine was astonished.
Ariana just smiled, handing Corrine a coat while she put a leash on her ferret friend.
“He told me.” There was a twinkle in her eyes Corrine couldn’t resist. “Come on, we don’t want to be late.”
Placing Archie on her shoulder, Corrine Blackhawk took hold of the leash and left the house. She never looked back to say goodbye.
Across town, Davis Michaels diligently sketched a playful dragon in his art book.
For some reason, he’d always been attracted to dragons. Whether it were real ones or ones from fantasy books. He was even a majestic dragon in his dreams, which always fascinated him.
Yet, with all his knowledge of dragons, his parents never knew.
That’s because he had no parents. He was still waiting to be adopted. Who’s going to want a fifteen-year-old child? No one, that’s who.
Davis sighed as he finished and signed the drawing. “There. Finished.”
He sat up to admire it when the art book was snatched from in front of him.
Davis turned to see a known orphanage bully. “Give that back, Jacob!”
“In your dreams, shrimp.” Jacob taunted.
“I said, give that back.” Davis was getting madder by the moment. That art book was the only thing he had that he really loved.
“Whatcha gonna do, Davey?” Jacob continued to tease him.
Davis stood his ground. His eyes turned a rustic color of brown and burgundy. He snarled and his eyes glowed a little, spooking Jacob out. Davis’ hands were clenched and he was ready to pound Jacob if he had to. “I hate being called ‘Davey.'” He growled, fists up.
“Come on, man. I was only teasing.” Jacob threw the book down and held his hands up in the air in surrender. “You can have it back – here.”
Davis’ eyes returned to a slate-grey, and he calmed down. Giving Jacob one final stare, Davis smiled. “Have a nice day,” and walked away.
What just happened back there? He asked himself, rubbing his eyelids. That was creepy!
He started to walk back to his room when he spotted a young woman looking back at him with a smile. “May I help you?”
“Sure can, tough guy.” The woman’s silver-blue eyes sparkled as she smiled. “I want to adopt you.”
“Yeah, right. What would you want with a fifteen-year-old?” Davis asked.
“That’s funny, I would’ve pegged you for seventeen.” The woman smiled. “Can we talk – alone?”
“Sure, but don’t be askin’ me to do anything dumb, ’cause I ain’t gonna do it.”
“Relax, Davis.” The woman replied. “I’m clean. Trust me.”
Davis stopped. “How did you know my name?”
“It’s a long story.” The woman said. “My name is Ariana Reading.”
“So, I noticed what you did back there – and I can explain it.” Mrs. Reading replied with a grin. “Can we talk?” She asked again.
He didn’t know what to think of her, but since he did want his questions answered, he’d better follow. “Sure.”
He noticed a girl with long black hair and light brown skin following her, with an animal perched on her shoulder. “Who’s that?”
“That is Corrine Blackhawk, your…partner.” Ariana tried to explain.
She led him to a secret place where no one would be able to hear their conversation. “Officially, I’m called the Lady Guardian of the Dream Realm.”
“Isn’t that the place where you dream and you remember it?” Davis asked.
“In a way, yes, it is, but that’s not why I’m here, or why those special abilities of yours have brought me here.” Ariana said. “You have what’s called Dragon Magic. You have an uncanny ability to take control over the earth’s forces – soil, water, wind, fire, and air, that sort of thing. What you did with your enemy back there is part of the beginning of that Magic.”
“What about Corine?”
“Its Corrine. C-o-r-r-i-n-e.” Corrine corrected. “If you’ll listen to her, she’ll explain everything.” She played with the ferret in her lap as she listened in.
“Corrine has a kind of magic all her own, called Unicorn Magic.” Ariana then told him the story she’d told Corrine earlier.
Both Ariana and Corrine stood when she was finished. Davis followed.
“What does that have to do with me?” He asked her.
“I need you to use that Dragon Magic of yours to help me.” Ariana said simply. “We have one more to gather, and we’ll be ready. Let’s go.”
“What about – you know, paperwork?” Davis asked.
“Don’t worry. I’ve taken care of everything beforehand.” Ariana assured him. “Come along, Davis. We don’t have much time left.”
Reluctantly, he followed them, taking his art book along for the ride.
Twenty minutes later, they pulled up to a run-down house.
“What is this place?” Corrine asked. Archie cowered in her jacket, scared.
“Our last stop before home.” Ariana replied. “Follow me.”
Davis and Corrine got out of the car and obeyed.
They followed Mrs. Reading inside, only to find a young man – his hair greasy, clothes tattered, and glasses on the floor beside him. He was studying, talking to himself.
“The trajectory of the space shuttle was at four point two nots.” He cursed. “What am I talking about? I can’t concentrate in this mess!”
The three of them stood aside and watched as he brought his hands to his temples.
He started to scream in pain. Standing up from the table, he knocked the chair down. “Stop it! Stop doing this to me! Leave me alone!”
His eyes opened for a slight moment, and he spotted the Lady Guardian.
“Why do you keep haunting me?” He demanded, still holding his head.
“I’m not haunting you. I’ve come to help you with your magic.” Ariana explained.
“You want to hurt me! Leave me alone!” He demanded.
Lady Guardian held her arm to the air and called a silent chant. In moments, the boy was silenced, his pain subsided, and he stared at her in wonder.
“I’m so confused.” He said. “For the first time in my life, I don’t have the answers. I’m a dummy. What’s going on with me? Why am I this way? Why do I constantly dream of being a statue in some palace, waiting to be freed?”
“I can’t answer all your questions,” Ariana started. “But I can help you understand.”
She stepped up to him and explained herself once again. Like clockwork, the boy was first confused, then interested, and finally intrigued. “You have what’s called Gargoyle Magic. It gives you the power of flight, wizardry, and others. The reason you dream of yourself being a statue – gargoyle – is because of your magic. It’s waiting to be unleashed, but only if you want it to.”
“I don’t understand.”
“That’s what we said.” Corrine replied. Archie climbed down from her shoulder and scampered over to the boy. “What’s your name?”
“Erick. Erick Stoddard.” He was entranced by the ferret. “Hey, why aren’t I afraid of him?”
“That’s because he likes you.” Corrine said with a smile. “His name is Archie. That’s short for Archibald.”
“What’s your stories?” Erick asked, eyeing Davis.
Davis stared back blankly. “My name is Davis Michaels. I came from Mrs. Petty’s Orphanage downtown.”
“I’m Corrine Blackhawk. I was a maid for a mean Mistress in the Rich District.” Corrine replied. “Mrs. Reading here says we all have some kind of magic, and she needs our help with something.”
“She won’t tell us, will she?” Erick supplied.
Corrine and Davis shook their heads. “Nope.”
“I needed the three of you together first.” Mrs. Reading supplied. “Now that I have, I’ll explain in more detail what I need you to do with your Magics.”
She turned to each of them. “Deep in the Valley of Lost Souls there were ten different Dominionites. One day, they gained enough power to travel here – to the Outer-World. Where no one knows or sees, they live to destroy all humanity. A peculiar bunch, really. Harmless to us, as Ancient Mystic Magics are concerned, but a pain to the rest of the planet. My daughter is the Enchantress. My sons, though identical in looks, are on two different forces: Andrew a Wizard while his twin brother Mark-Antony is a Knight. They and their forces, with my daughter a third-generation Crusader, help in the Dream Realm as often as they can. The rest of the Ancient Mystics have their hands full in the Dream Realm. This is the fun part – where you come in. I need you to help me round up these rascals and deport them back to the Dark Side of the Dominion.
“I’m not saying it’ll be easy, but I’m also not saying it won’t be an adventure.” Ariana concluded. “The power of your three Magics: Corrine’s Unicorn Magic, Davis’ Dragon Magic, and Erick’s Gargoyle Magic, is enough to capture them. Thing is, no Ancient Mystic knows where they are. That’s why it’s up to you to find them.”
Erick interrupted, as Ariana had expected. “If no one knows where they are, how will we know?”
“Through your dreams.” Ariana explained. “When the three of you dream, you are Companions – creatures of myth and magic. I’ll give you a special necklace that will help the journey a little better.”
“Will you be there to help us?” Corrine asked, Archie settling in her lap once again.
Lady Guardian shook her head. “Once I take you to the Elemental Mistresses, I’ll have to leave, to help Lord Guardian O’Dell fight his battles. That’s what I do.”
“Wait a minute –.” Davis replied, standing. “You bring us here, taking us from our homes, telling us we have some kind of magic powers within us, then you leave us? That’s not right. Whatever you’re selling, I’m not buying.”
Corrine gasped. “She’s giving us a chance of a lifetime, Davis.” She scolded. Archie hissed his disappointment. “We’re taken from places we called hell. I don’t know about you, tough guy, but I’m interested in taking on creatures with my magic.”
Erick stood as well. Davis was out-numbered. “Anything is better than this, I’ll tell you that.” He replied.
Davis thought for a moment.
“If you’re worried about losing control over yourself, don’t be.” Ariana replied, hugging his shoulders. “I know all your stories because I’ve lived them.”
“What does that have to do with it?” Davis asked her, defiant.
She could tell he was going to be hard to convince. “I’ve learned to master my own Ancient Mystic Magics, as well as be an Earthbound haunted by my memories and darkest fears. If I were to steer either of you wrong, may my magic be void and my life worth nothing.” The three were silent, glancing at each other. “The Dream Realm needs your help, which is why I’m here.” Ariana replied. “I have faith in you, shouldn’t you have faith in yourselves?”
Corrine nodded slowly. Erick grasped his old Gargoyle necklace and nodded. They looked to Davis. Who smiled. A high-five sent cheers.
“I’m ready for action.” Davis replied. “We have some Dominionite butts to kick!”
Lady Guardian’s Reign Saga:
O’Dell suddenly felt sick. It was worse than when Dominick threatened his existence many a time-span ago. His image faded from the majestic unicorn-Pegasus to a human male.
From the air of the Dream Realm, he fell.
He tried to re-transform to something with wings, but it didn’t work.
His magic was weak, and he continued to fall.
O’Dell screamed as he plummeted to the ground far below him.
He tried one last resort, in order not to hurt himself –
“Wishing on the brightest star
“The Dream Realm has ever seen,
“Change the ground to a pillowed cloud,
“As to not bruise the tender green.”
Quickly, luckily for O’Dell, the ground changed to a cloud, and he landed on it, unharmed.
O’Dell’s head hurt, and he wondered why his powers of magic weren’t working. He looked around, and was unable to tell where in the Dream Realm he had landed.
O’Dell stood and brushed himself off. “Where am I?”
The trees were grey, the ground was brown, and O’Dell was surrounded by Areans, though dull in their appearance. Neither of them spoke, but bowed to him silently.
“My Lord Guardian.” He heard a voice from behind him call. He turned to see Maximaniac, his brother who ruled the Grey Area. “What are you doing here?”
O’Dell held his head. “I – fell.” His words stumbled, and the jewel on his headband suddenly hurt him.
Maximaniac was about to laugh when he saw the jewel’s dull colors. “What is happening to you, my brother?”
“I – do not – know.” O’Dell stammered. He began to get dizzy, and knew he must get to the Ancient Mystic Sisters. “Can you – direct me – back – to the Sisters?”
Max held onto his brother as they walked to the Grey Area-Province gate. He saw the Companion Sire Wolf Stargazer nearby, playing with his daughter, Princess Celine, and called to him. “Sire Wolf!”
Wolf looked up and saw his Lord Guardian almost doubled over, and Maximaniac held him up. Wolf could see his Lord needed help, so he ran to him.
“Do you know what needs to be done?” Max asked him.
Wolf nodded, taking a side of O’Dell. “Aye. He needs the Ancient Mystic’s Cure.”
“Will you take him to the Palace?”
“Aye.” Was all Wolf said.
Celine held on to one side of O’Dell while Wolf held to the other.
“The – magic – fading – from me.” O’Dell whispered. He could hardly talk now.
“Do you know who is doing this to you, Lord Guardian?” Wolf asked him.
O’Dell shook his head. “Not – of this world.”
“If it strains you to speak, Lord Guardian, please do not.” Celine advised him.
“Princess Celine, I – agree.”
In silence, the trio walked to the Ancient Mystic Sisters Palace and Celine rang the bell.
Enchantra opened the door. Noticing her lover, O’Dell, she gasped. “O’Dell, what has happened to you?”
He moaned his response.
“Please, Mistress Enchantra, do not make him speak.” Wolf replied.
“It hurts him, and its hurting me trying to sense him.” Celine said after her father. She purr-whined.
“Lay him in the corner.” Enchantra commanded lightly. “Stand aside and we shall soon see what is bothering our Lord Guardian.”
“If I may, Mistress, he needs The Cure.” Wolf told her.
“The Cure, you say?” Enchantra stood and fetched her spell-book. She came back, flipping its pages with her fingers. “Hmm. Ah – here it is. The Ancient Mystic Magic Cure. It tells here the successor must reign, find a Sparrow’s Paw, and return it to the Lord Guardian before seven Earthbound nights behold are lost.” She looked up to her visitors. “Trouble is, it’s a hard task finding a Sparrow with a Paw around here. There has not been one in nearly two-thousand centuries.”
Wolf sighed in sorrow. “What are we to do?”
“If there are no sparrows around, how can we retrieve it’s paw?” Celine asked. “The Crusaders, Mistress?”
Enchantra shook her head. “Nay. No Crusaders.”
“The Wizards –” Wolf began, but she interrupted him.
“Surely the Knights, or the Sisters?” Wolf spoke up.
“What of the Oracles or the Creatures Force?” Celine cried after him.
Again, Enchantra shook her head sadly. “Nay. Neither will be able to. This is something Lady Guardian herself must do alone.”
“Who will fetch her?” Wolf asked. He looked at the Mistress and she smiled back. “Certainly, you do not mean me?”
“Why not, Sire Wolf? Have you not helped Lady Guardian before?” Enchantra relayed.
Wolf sniffed and shook his head. “Aye, that I have.” He gave up. “Tell me when and where, and I shall be there with bells on.”
Enchantra told him, and the Stargazers left O’Dell in her capable, caring hands.
“I hope I am correct in this assumption, My Lord.” She whispered to him, planting a kiss on his head below the jewel.
“Trust – in – your – followers.” He choked with a small grin. “They – will – prosper.”
Meanwhile in the Outer-World, Ariana Reading was brushing her hair in front of the Ancient Mystic Mirror when its image glowed. Her ring grew warm, and her necklace’s reflection had her mesmerized with fear. She dared to close her eyes and press her palms to the Mirror’s surface.
In moments, her world was spinning, and she met up with Sire Wolf of the Dream Realm’s Stargazer Palace and Canine Valley.
“Wolf,” She called to her Companion friend. “It’s been forever since I was here last. How have you been?”
“Not well, My Lady Guardian.” He replied sadly, not bothering to meet her eyes.
Ariana knew something was wrong right away. Since the Crusade years ago, Wolf had called her by her real name – for when he was Earthbound. She had to ask the question bugging her mind. “Is there something wrong, Wolf?”
Wolf then told her of the Elder Lord Guardian’s demise, and how O’Dell looked when Wolf first came upon him.
“Enchantra needs to see you.” Wolf told her last.
Ariana tried to keep her grin up as Enchantra told her what had to be done to save O’Dell. “What am I to do? How do I do it if there aren’t any sparrows with paws to be found here?”
Three words Ariana dreaded since she first was called the Lady Guardian rang in her ear from Enchantra’s mouth now.
“You must reign.”
“But, I’m not ready! My Magic’s rusty, I need practice, and I’m still an Earthbound!”
“Whether or not you are ready is not the question here.” The Mistress told her. “Lord Guardian’s magic is fading from him – worse than when Dominick tried to take over. He needs you to take over for him while he cannot. The entire Dream Realm needs you to find that Sparrow’s Paw in order to complete the Cure.”
“Only then, will you be able to return to the Outer-World as an Earthbound until it is truly time.”
Ariana nodded, bowing to Enchantra. “I will try my best.”
Ancient Mystic Waters Saga:
Kelina Erin Reading, age twenty-one, paced the floor, waiting for her fiancee, Bradley Allen Waters, to come home. She looked out the window of the Reading’s house, and sighed.
Her mother stepped behind her and placed a hand on her shoulder. “Honey, will you relax? You’re making me nervous.”
“You, nervous, Momma?” Kelly turned to face her with a teasing grin. “What do you have to be nervous about?”
Ariana Reading smiled back at her daughter. “Just sit down, Kid. He’ll be here, just wait.”
Kelly took a seat at the kitchen table. “What could be taking the guys so long?”
Kelly’s best friends, Cara Richardson and Kirsten Farthay were there as well.
“I wouldn’t worry about them if I were you, Kel.” Cara teased. “They’re probably in traffic or something.”
Kelly looked at her strangely. “It’s the something I’m worried about.”
“Oh Kelly,” Her mother smiled, hugging her from behind before taking a seat beside her.
Melody, Kelly’s eleven-year-old step-sister, laughed as she watched them. She was sitting across the table from Kirsten and Cara, listening in and keeping silent.
“What was it like when you got married, Mrs. Reading?” Kirsten asked out of the blue.
“Well, Luna and I had a double wedding, at the System.” Ariana began. “With Dad in the middle of us to give us away, we waltzed to our awaiting Romeos. I was on the left and Luna on the right.” She sighed romantically, linking her fingers together and resting her chin on her hands. “It was so romantic.”
“We’re sure to top that.” Cara replied with a grin. “A triple wedding, right here in Hill View! Then, off to Aruba, honeymoon paradise for Josh and I.” She turned to Kirsten, nicknamed Krysti. “What about you, Krysti? Where are you and Steve going?”
“Honolulu.” Krysti’s eyes supported the romantic implications of the sunny state.
“Bradley and I are going to Paris, thanks to his real dad, Mr. Waters.” Kelly bragged.
“Good thing you speak French fluently.” Mrs. Reading teased. “Otherwise, you’ll be sunk!”
The girls laughed, and Kelly blushed.
“Oh La La!” Melody cried, giggling.
Kelly gave her a playful smile as she tousled Melody’s hair. “Very funny, midget.”
Melody stuck her tongue out at her.
“Be nice, Melody Elisabeth.” Ariana warned her younger daughter.
With that, she was silenced.
“I wonder if the twins will be there?” Krysti asked. “Your brothers have a habit of missing special events, Kelly.”
It was true. Kelly’s fourteen-year-old step-brothers, Andrew and Mark-Antony, loved being late. Andrew wasn’t as bad as his adventurous younger brother, being an Ancient Mystic Wizard and all. Mark-Antony was an Ancient Mystic Knight. Even Melody, little as she was, played a part in the Dream Realm battle, as a Junior-Crusader and a powerful Ancient Mystic Sister. The whole Reading family were involved with the Dream Realm in some way, thanks to their mother the Lady Guardian.
“That’s because they’re still in high school.” Mrs. Reading pointed out. “Just like you were when you became Dream Realm Crusaders. Derrick and I will make sure they’re there to see their step-sister get married. Leave it up to me.”
At that moment, in burst two noisy young men. Andrew was the one with glasses and an armload of books. His brother carried a pair of in-line skates. Setting them down, Mark-Antony ran upstairs.
“I told you Kelly was here!” Andrew, the elder cried to his brother, heading to the kitchen to greet her. Putting his books on the table, he hugged his older step-sister.
“Good to see you, too, Andrew.” Kelly said. It was good to see them again. Funny enough, she’d missed them both dearly. “Don’t you have a club to go to or something?”
“Canceled.” Andrew replied, pushing his glasses up on his nose. “Trying to get rid of us?”
Kelly laughed, rustling his dark brown hair. “No, little brother. Certainly not. I come home after four grueling years of college – with no visits from my brothers – and get this kind of welcome from you?”
Mark-Antony came up behind her and hugged her.
“You can’t say they don’t love you, Kelly.” Mr. Reading came in and saw the scene. He kissed his step-daughter on the cheek, then said. “Where are your husbands-to-be?”
“Magic or guessing?” Kelly asked her step-father.
“Take a guess.” Cara replied. She didn’t really like when her best friend-sister in law used her Ancient Mystic Magic. Whenever Kelly did Magic around her, there was bound to be trouble.
“They might be stuck in traffic.” Kelly said with a shrug. “Now, I could find them by Magic.”
Mrs. Reading gave her daughter a look. “You know better.”
“Come on, Momma. When you’re worried about me, I can sense you use Magic to find me.” She said. “Not as much as you used to, but I know you do it.”
Mark-Antony laughed. “She sure told you, Mother!”
Melody and Andrew laughed.
“That’s enough, you guys.” Mrs. Reading said sternly with a grin. “Mark, go upstairs and start your homework. Andrew, go with him, and take your sister.”
“Okay.” Mark replied, realizing he’d gone too far with his sarcasm. He turned to Kelly. “See you later, Sis.”
Andrew took Melody’s hand and led her upstairs, away from the adults.
“Speaking of brothers, I’d better call mine. I want to make sure he and Claudia are going to make it to the wedding in time.” Cara replied. She turned to Mrs. Reading. “Mind if I use the phone?”
“Go ahead, Cara. Make it quick, though. Just in case.” Mrs. Reading told her. She knew her younger sister, Claudia was married to Cara’s older brother Craig. Andrea, Cara’s older sister, was married to her older brother, Kevin. She stood and gathered the plates from the cupboard. “Meanwhile, you ladies better go wash up for dinner.”
Kelly and Krysti each kissed Mrs. Reading on the cheek before heading upstairs.
Ariana Reading laughed softly. Her husband, Derrick wrapped an arm around her waist and kissed her lips.
“What’s on your mind, Love?” He asked.
“The kids are growing up so fast. It feels like yesterday Kelly and I were reunited, and now she’s getting married.” A reminiscent tear dropped from her cheek.
“I have a feeling your mother felt the same way.” Derrick replied. He thought of his boys. “Remember when the twins were born?”
Ariana smiled. “Yeah. Now, they’re in high school.” She said. “But what about Melody? She’s grown up, but still doesn’t know the truth about herself.” Ariana paused, enjoying his embrace. “Remember when Amanda Jo and Stacy came to live here with us?”
“I could have sworn it were Kelly and one of the neighborhood girls playing a prank on us when I first saw Amanda Jo.” Derrick said. “Ah, those were the days.”
Ariana closed her eyes and perked her ears to listen.
“What’s up?” Derrick whispered.
“The boys are back.” She said with a grin. “The girls will be so relieved. They were so worried about them.”
“True women.” Derrick teased her, then stepped back when she turned to playfully slap him.
“You’re gonna regret that remark, Derrick Reading!” Ariana started after him when the three gentlemen came in.
“Wait a minute, what’s going on here?” Bradley Allen Waters teased them. Josh Stevenson and Steven Edwards laughed with their best friend.
“None of your business, Mr. Waters.” Ariana said, going to hug him. “Go upstairs. The girls are waiting for you.”
Bradley shook his head and laughed. “I’m still not used to knowing my real surname.”
“Don’t worry, you’ll get used to it – in time.” Ariana teased him, thinking of back when she found her own surname of Woods. “Dinner’s almost ready, guys.”
“Yum,” Steve rubbed his stomach and licked his lips. “I can’t wait to see what you’ve got cooking.”
“Yeah,” Josh put in. “You’re almost better than my own mother!”
“Oh, stop.” Ariana Reading laughed. “Go ahead, boys.”
They left and the Readings continued to fix dinner.
“Just think, those boys will be your sons-in-law.” Derrick told her. “Josh will be your brother-in-law. At least, I think he will, with Cara’s siblings married to yours.”
“Josh and Steve already feel like sons to me.” She told him. “Since they were young, those kids have felt like my own.”
Derrick stopped slicing mushrooms to kiss her. “You’re such a kind, loving woman Bonnie.”
“I know,” She smiled. The perfect family was her own, no matter what puss and strife she’d had to endure to get there. “I just wish I weren’t so kind and loving.”
“If you’re saying you aren’t tough enough on those kids, I’d say you were nuts.” Derrick replied. “As far as I can tell, you’re the best.”
“I have to be. I’m the Lady Guardian.” She replied. “O’Dell and the Sisters count on me to help them whenever needed, which means keeping track of the Wizards, Knights, Creatures Force, Oracles, Companions and the Crusaders. I have to say something, though.”
Ariana smiled. “I’m lucky. I have my Earthly Protector by my side, my family to guide, and nothing left to hide.”
Derrick laughed. “That’s what I love about you, Bonnie.” He kissed her, then heard giggles and whistles from behind him.
“How romantic!” Cried Cara as she and Josh popped their heads in the kitchen door.
“Glad you like it, Cara.” Derrick said with a grin as they left them. He turned to his wife. “Did you want to finish up?”
“Sure. I’ll be right out.” Ariana replied. “Oh, Derrick. Could you send Kelly in here? I need to talk to her.”
“Sure, no problem.” Derrick said, then saw the serious look on her face. “Nothing’s wrong, is there?”
“Huh? Oh, no.” Ariana said. “Nothing’s wrong.”
He left and a minute later, in walked Kelly.
“What’s up, Momma? Need help?” She asked, then saw the look on her face. “What’s wrong?”
“Kelly, you’ve used Magic all your life, from the day you were born, correct?”
“Yeah, I guess.” She replied. “Why?”
“After the day you marry Bradley, I want you to keep this in mind.” Ariana replied. “Being Earthbound is harder than it sounds. You aren’t allowed, under any circumstances, to use any magic, whether it be Unicorn or Ancient Mystic, for a year.”
Kelly was open-mouthed. “A full year? That’s not too bad.”
“It’s also the reason I don’t allow you to use your Ancient Mystic Magic around other people.” Ariana said, placing a hand on her daughter’s arm. “I’ve been preparing you for this, Kelly. Promise you’ll listen to Nana Enchantra?”
Kelly nodded, knowing Enchantra was one of the Ancient Mystic Sisters in the Dream Realm responsible for their Ancient Mystic Magic. “Yes, Momma.” Now she was depressed.
Ariana smiled, and wrapped an arm around Kelly’s shoulders. “Come on, you can help me take all this out.”
Grabbing a tray of food, Kelly and her mother were out of the kitchen.
A couple days later, both mother and daughter had weird feelings about the triple wedding.
“What’s with you two?” Asked Krysti as the girls were getting ready for the wedding rehearsal.
Kelly’s mind was on something else. She finally noticed her best friend there. “Oh, sorry Krys. Did you say something?”
“Yeah, she did.” Cara said, sitting next to Kelly on the bed. She grabbed a hairbrush and began braiding Kelly’s hair. “You and your Mom have been acting strange for days.”
“Even before the banquet.” Krysti pointed out. “What’s up with that?”
Kelly sighed, and shrugged her shoulders. They had a point. Even she found herself acting stranger than usual. “I don’t really know how to tell you, to make you guys understand.”
“Come on, Kel.” Cara hugged her. “We’ve been best friends since we were seven and Krysti was six. Whatever you need to tell us, just say it.”
“Yeah, we’ll understand.” Krysti added, nodding.
“Tonight, when I go to the Dream Realm, Enchantra is going to visit me.” Kelly replied slowly.
“What’s so bad about that?” Krysti asked.
Kelly took a breath and let it out. “I’ll be Earthbound for a full year.”
Krysti and Cara exchanged confused looks.
“Earthbound means not being able to use any magic whatsoever.” Kelly said simply.
“Oh, why didn’t you just say so?” Krysti asked with a grin.
This made Kelly grin. “I just did.”
The girls giggled. It seemed to ease the tensions Kelly had been feeling. That’s what best friends did to you, she thought happily.
Cara looked at the clock. “Wow, you guys. We’ve gotta fly. We’re gonna be late.”
Kelly laughed, standing and following her friends – soon to be sisters! – downstairs to their awaiting beaus.
Any strange feelings she may have had before seemed to disappear into thin air.
Universal Magick Saga:
Katherine “Katie” Waters rushed around her room, trying to find the perfect outfit. She didn’t want to be late for her own Sweet-sixteen birthday party! She had to hurry!
In front of her full-length mirror, she smiled. Closing her eyes, she used the Ancient Mystic’s Changing task to change to the perfect dress.
“Katie! Your friends are here!” She heard her father’s voice yelling up the stairs.
Perfect timing. Making sure everything was in place, Katie raced to greet her family and friends.
“Happy birthday, Sweetheart.” Bradley Waters kissed and hugged his daughter.
“Daddy!” Katie usually loved the attention she got from her father, but with all her friends watching, she blushed, embarrassed.
Bradley just laughed, following her to the livingroom, where her friends were waiting.
“Happy Birthday, Katie!” They cried, all racing to hug her, kiss her cheek and bombard her with gifts and attention.
Her twelve-year-old brother James grabbed her hand, nearly dragging her to the couch. “This is your day, sis.” He reached behind his back and produced a small box, handing it to her. He hugged her when he gave it to her. “A little something I picked out for you.” He whispered in her ear.
When she opened it, she found a silver charm bracelet. The charm that hung from it was a silver number 16. James sat beside her, watching her put it on.
“So, how do you like it?” He asked.
She hugged his shoulders, making him blush. “I love it, James. Thank you.”
The party continued with gifts, food, and dancing. Just as she thought she’d danced with everyone in the room, a stranger came up to her. She was sitting on the couch with her best friend Carla Roberts, resting from the last dance when she sensed someone beside her. When she turned, she saw him. He had bright red hair and the most gorgeous aqua eyes she’d ever seen. Around his neck was a symbol of the Wiccan lifestyle, a pentacle.
“Hello.” She said shyly, unable to speak.
“May I have this dance?” The young man with the gentle aqua eyes held out a hand for her to take.
Katie took it, standing. She could hear Carla giggling behind her, but ignored it. She turned to the stranger and noticed he was a foot taller than she was.
He took her to the dance floor. “You may not know me. My name is Matthew Austin, only I want to be called Jared.”
“Jared.” She whispered, unable to take her eyes off his. “Is that your middle name?”
He nodded. “Your parents invited mine. I didn’t want to come, but now I’m glad I did.”
Katie wasn’t listening. “Mmm.” She nodded. “Me, too.”
He smiled, wrapping his arms around her waist as a slow song came in the air. Katie could feel his heart skip a beat at the act. So did hers.
“You know who I am, don’t you?” She asked him.
“Of course. You are Katherine Waters, daughter to Kelly Reading and Bradley Allen Waters.” Jared announced with a grin. “Sister to James Waters, et cetera, et cetera.”
Katie giggled. “Call me Katie. How did you know all that?”
Jared shrugged. “Years of Mother’s jealousy for your family.”
“Why is she jealous?” She asked.
“You know the stories involving your parents.” Jared said. “They helped solve crimes in Hill View for years.”
“I get it. Attention.”
“Right. Well, my mother is from the elusive Fox family.” Jared went on.
Katie finally knew who he was. “Your mother is Paulette Fox, one of the Witches of Hill View?”
He backed away, whispering. “How did you know?”
“That’s easy. Back in high school and even college, my parents were close friends of the Witches of Hill View.” Katie supplied. “My Gramma Ariana is Darlene Bennington’s personal friend.”
He dared to step closer to her. “You don’t hate them?”
Katie had to laugh. “Of course not. I’ve learned not to hate anybody. Why would I hate those who helped raise me?” He was stunned, so she made the next move. She wrapped her arms around his neck, making him blush. “Besides, aren’t we taught not to hate the children for the parents’ life choices?”
Their eyes held for a moment. Jared wrapped his arms around her waist again, pulling her close for a simple, solitary kiss. It sent a chill up Katie’s spine and right away she knew.
Jared would be her Earthly Protector.
It didn’t matter whether she was an Ancient Mystic and he a Wiccan. The rivalry between magicians didn’t matter, either. All that mattered was that she found him.
When they parted, Katie and Jared stared at each other. After a moment, Katie smiled, whispering into his chest. “I’ve found you, my Earthly Protector. At last.”
Jared didn’t know what an Earthly Protector was, but he did know one thing. He was desperately in love. His parents spoke about the Waters and Reading families, and how their spell-casting rivaled the Wiccans own. They had Magic in those silver-blue eyes, his father Dylan told him many times. His mother Paulette had warned him to stay away from those with the silver-blue eyes. She told her son the Ancient Mystics were dabblers in the Dark Magic.
Right at this moment, he disbelieved everything he’d been taught about the Ancient Mystics. He wanted to learn on his own what made Katherine “Katie” Waters tick. He wanted to protect her, hell, he wanted to love her. He needed her. His heart yearned for her all his eighteen years. He had to know, so he spoke up.
“Katherine,” his mouth uttered the words in a whisper. She looked up to meet his eyes. Her silver-blue eyes were mysterious, and he couldn’t resist.
She placed a finger on his lips to stop his words, searching his eyes before saying. “Yes.”
Katie and Jared kissed again to seal the deal.
Chronology of the Ancient Mystics Sagas:
(A1) Wars for Power Saga – WPS
(A2) Ancient Mystic Mirror Saga: – MMS
(B) Young Guardian Saga – YGS
(B2) The Shadow and the Grand Magus Saga — SGMS
(C) Ancient Mystic Circle Saga: – MCS
(D) Adams’ Grove Saga: – AGS
(E) Ancient Mystic Crusaders Saga: – TMCS
(F) Curse of the Wishing Stone Saga: – CWSS
(G) The Chosen One Saga – COS
(G2) Elemental Crusaders Saga – ECS
(G3) Ancient Mystic Elements Saga – MES
(H) Dominionite Crystal Saga: – DCS
(J) Ancient Mystic Wizards Saga: – MWS
(K) Ancient Mystic Knights Saga: – MKS
(K2) Lady Knights Saga: – LKS
Companion Chronicles Saga: – CCS
(L) Ancient Mystic Creatures Force Saga: – CFS
(L2) Demon Fighters Saga – DFS
(L3) United Ancient Mystic Forces Saga: – UMFS
(M) Lady Guardian’s Reign Saga: – YGRS
(N) Ancient Mystic Waters Saga – TMWS
(O) Universal Magic Saga – UMS
(P) The Dwellers Saga – TDS
(Q) The Ancient Mystic-Dweller Prophecy Saga – MDPS
(R) The Next Guardian Saga – NGS