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Chronicles of the Dragon Nations
#1: Young Guardian and the Dominionites
Part One: Dream Realm Crusaders
Prologue: Dream Memory
The Young Guardian of Dreams
Dream Realm Crusaders
I was stuck in a dream, paralyzed by a magical spell, yet I could hear every word. The magic that wrapped itself around me was warm and tingly, a gentle touch of freesia mixed in. I could not move, speak or open my eyes, so I listened.
“Well?” A woman asked. It sounded like my Countess Sita – sister – Dracora Dratianos. “Who was at the door, O’Dell?”
“Chase Moondancer with my successor,” that voice was the one of a fellow ruler, Lord Guardian O’Dell of the Mystic Realms. “Enchantra took Chase to rest in another room. He may need to Feed, Dracora.”
The Dragon Nations have always had warm relations with those of the Mystic Realms, as those Realms signed a peace treaty with us a century ago. Brakkon, the former Emperor of the Dragon Nations and my mate’s father, was like a brother to O’Dell.
“Aye; thank you.” Dracora sighed.
They left the room, closing the door behind them.
I continued to listen as conversations intrigued me. Perhaps I would gain a clue as to why I was there, paralyzed with magic?
O’Dell lowered his voice. “Does Dixie know what must be done?”
Dixie? Does he mean his eldest daughter, Dixilynne? Last I knew, she was a mere child when she and her two sisters were exiled to the Mortal Realm for their own safety. What did she have to do with anything?
“Aye, she knows and will follow your lead, as always.” The eldest Mystic Sister Enchantra announced. She was Dixilynne’s mother as O’Dell was Dixilynne’s father.
“The Empress is resting and under deep enchantments to stay that way.” O’Dell supplied.
A third voice cleared their throat. “So, what do we do next, my Lord? Just sit and wait?”
I knew that voice, and did not like it. That was Challandra, Enchantra’s twin who was haughty, thinking she was better than anyone else.
O’Dell sighed. “There is naught much we can do, Challandra. Destiny will take care of its own when it is good and ready.”
“Destiny is such a strong word.” Dracora announced as if bored when she walked in. I could sense as my Sita’s emotions turn to fear as she mumbled. “Uh oh.”
“Countess?” Enchantra asked.
The room was quiet until I heard a thump and the sound of a male voice moan desperately. “Don’t die on me now, Adarramena. I need you.”
That was Drakkar Dratianos, my mate’s twin brother and my own twin’s mate. I tried sensing my twin. She was currently knocked out with the same type of spell I was under, magic worn to the near-ends and mind exhausted. My heart raced to get to my twin, and I was at a loss of what to do. I tried telepathy.
Adarra? Her mind was fuzzy; I could barely feel the twin link between us. Now I was concerned. Please, awaken your mind. Break through the bindings and speak to me!
I received no answer, so I tuned my ears again to the conversation outside my door.
“What can we do for you, Prince?” Enchantra asked the question.
“It’s my mate, Lord Guardian.” Drakkar supplied.
“She overexerted both herself and her duo.” Enchantra surmised.
That explained the fuzzy mind-path. Not to mention why I felt magically drained when I had not used magic since terrifying visions forced me to leave my mate.
“Now you know why I took some of our people to the Mortal Realm.” Dracora explained. “Your duo has gone chaotic, and there is no end to his destruction.”
“There has to be a way to save Adarra from him.” Drakkar agreed.
“I believe we can help with that.” Enchantra looked to O’Dell. “My love?”
O’Dell took a moment before responding. “Challandra, please bring her in and set her beside her sister.”
They continued to talk as if I could not hear them. I heard the door open and felt myself rising from my position. I was floating in air, my DragonWolf wings useless.
Dracora gasped. “Adellandra is your successor?”
I must have been in the main room now, because I felt myself gently landing on a soft surface. I sensed my sister Adarra, my very twin, lying beside me in a binding quite like my own.
“I told you of my vision, Countess.” O’Dell supplied.
Dracora huffed. “Very well; carry on.”
I could tell my Sita was exhausted of O’Dell already. She and the Lord of the Mystic Realms never got along.
“There is something about those girls, O’Dell.” I could feel Enchantra staring at me. “Something that screams magic.”
“They are Draconian.” Drakkar said, hoping that would explain it. “They have great power.”
“Nay, it is something else.” Enchantra supplied. “They are worth saving. They must live, but not here. Not now. Not while many wars are being fought.”
I agreed; too many wars, between the Demon Realms and those of the Fire Nations south of the Dragon Nations. I fled to my childhood home to get away from them.
“For once, I agree.” Dracora’s voice broke my thoughts. “But what are you going to do with them?”
Enchantra smiled. “Give them another destiny.” She looked up to O’Dell. “Find Susan and bring her here.”
Susan. Why did that name seem familiar?
“Who is Susan?” Dracora asked for me.
“My Grankana, as you would call her.”
“Your Earthbound Granddaughter?”
“Aye,” Enchantra was proud of herself for remembering the Draconian word for Granddaughter. “She has five children already and more than enough room in her home and heart for three more.”
“Three?” Dracora asked.
That could only mean one thing.
Anton! I thought to myself, my mind trying to seek his. My satil – brother — was near; I could sense him.
“Do you mean Anton as well?” Drakkar inquired. It seemed even he read into my thoughts.
“We found him unconscious in a trench and decided to bring him here as well.” Enchantra nodded. “He is resting in the other room. I had to put him under a spell in order for him to stay that way.”
What was with these Mystics and their spells?
“He is a fighter.” Dracora told her. “I mean, neither of the Dranna siblings are dead; just weakened and under your wretched spells. How are you going to give them another destiny?”
“They will be reborn as Earthbound Ancient Mystics.” Enchantra said simply. Footsteps were followed by a touch to my cheek. “This one is different; even from her twin and brother. I cannot place it.”
If she only knew, I thought to myself.
“Adellandra has always been different.” Dracora remarked. She knew my secret. “She has always been kind, loving, gentle and good; yet a fierce fighter and an honorable Empress.”
I tried using telepathy with Dracora. Thank you for the compliment.
You’re welcome, Sita. Dracora said in my mind. I’m just sorry it has to be this way.
“Only she knows why she left our bratton.” Drakkar said, using the Draconian word for ‘brother.’
“It was to save the children from destruction.” Dracora replied simply, and I could feel both my siblings-by-mating staring at me.
Take the Royal Crest for me, please? I asked Dracora; for she was the only one I could trust with such a precious pendant. I will not need it where I am going.
Certainly. Aloud, she cleared her throat and took the Royal Crest of the Dragon Nations from around my neck. It was the only piece of royal jewelry I had left, and it belonged in her hands now. I wish you luck on your new Destiny, until it brings us back together.
That was an odd thing for her to say. Before I could think anymore, she spoke up to the Mystics. “I will keep the Royal Crest until she is ready once more.”
“What about me?” Drakkar demanded. “I’m the next in line, not you.”
“As I recall, Draconis is still Emperor and I’m a Countess.”
“Yeah, of Monarch’s Glenn.” Drakkar sneered.
“Enough!” Challandra cried out. “You can bicker and fight later.”
Before either one could say anymore, a young woman’s voice broke the tension. “Gramere? What’s going on? Why did you send Granpere for me?”
“Fetch the DragonWolf male for me from the other room, Susan. “Enchantra instructed automatically. “Set him down beside his sisters.” Enchantra instructed.
“Yes, Gramere,” Susan was confused, but obeyed, leaving to fetch my brother Anton.
I sensed his condition, besides the spell he was under. He was war-warn, and wounded. There was a hole in his heart and soul that was there since his own mate of Alexia, Dracora’s sister, fled. I felt so bad for him, and wished I could get out of this spell to heal him. Darn the Mystics!
It took a moment for her to stare at us once she placed Anton next to me on the couch. She gasped. “I know who they are now! She is the Lost Empress of Mal’estar, Lady Adellandra, and that’s her twin, Princess Adarramena. The male is their younger brother Sir Anton Dranna.”
This Susan was a very bright Mystic. Now I knew why her name was familiar; she was Enchantra’s grandonan who single-handedly destroyed five demons, saving several dragon pups from death.
Enchantra confirmed. “Do you know what I wish you to do with them?”
“I-I-I don’t know.” Susan whispered.
“Keep them safe.”
I felt Susan staring at us. “I understand.”
“No, I do not think you do.” Enchantra shook her head. “Your Grand-Uncle is at it again. We must keep their existences a secret in order for them to survive long enough to destroy him.”
“How are you going to do that?” Susan asked. “They are already fully-grown and in a form our Realm has never seen.”
“The time rift between Realms is different.” Enchantra began. “We wish to use the Ancient Mystic chants to blood them as our own.”
Blood us! What was she talking about?
“‘Blood’ them?” Drakkar asked, speaking up. “I mean no disrespect Mistress, but, surely there must be another way?”
Enchantra shook her head. “Not if you want them alive to see Mal’estar once again.”
“But blooding them as Ancient Mystics will –” Dracora began but was cut off.
She was about to say, “Blooding them as Ancient Mystics would take the memories away of who they truly are.”
“I know what it will do, Countess.” Enchantra supplied. “I assure you, there is no other way around it. They must be blooded as Ancient Mystics in order to survive your brother’s chaos and Orthos’ reign of destruction.”
Draconis was still chaotic? I was sorry to hear it. My mate had not been himself since before the war he raged with the Demon Lord Archimonde, O’Dell’s duo Orthos, and Brakkon’s own Chaotic form of Thorn. All that pent up negative energy turned him and forced terrifying visions in my mind.
I could feel Drakkar’s anger at being separated from his mate when he growled. “If you hurt her, I will know of it!”
“No, you will not.” O’Dell confirmed. “Once the ritual is done, the three of them will have no memory of who they once were.”
“They will have their powers,” Dracora pointed out, “and their forms. The Mortal Realm is not ready for DragonWolves. Mortals still believe the Nations – the very worlds in which they live — are myth!”
She was right, it was not ready. Neither was I ready to forget her, my beloved Empire, or my once-loving mate.
“She’s right.” Susan pointed out. “Only those with the Magical Eye know the truth.”
“All will be well.” O’Dell said sternly. “They will assume Immortal Ancient Mystic form and be taught of whatever magic their minds believe they are ready for.”
My siblings – Draconis’ twin and his younger sister – could say nothing to the statement. Susan broke the silence.
“Shall we begin?” She said quietly.
Chanting in the Ancient Mystic language, they spun a wild magical spell around the three of us. We were each already in their binding and sleeping spells, so why not add one more?
I felt dizzy just lying there, still unable to speak or move. My head hurt as my Wolfkin ears and Dragon horns were pulled inside my head. My back hurt, wings forcefully returning inside my body. My arms and legs hurt, as my body was changing to a strange Immortal human form. My wolf features diminished, fur retreating and hands instead of paws and nails instead of claws. I felt a multitude of winds wrap around me, one entering my body. That one caused me great pain, but I could not cry out. I felt my external body shrinking. Instead, my form was not my own, but of a young girl.
It was a powerful spell that would change my existence.
Breaking my thoughts was the whimpering sound of an infant.
“Shush, shush. There there.” Susan picked him up and held him. “I know what I must do next, Granpere.”
“Rename them and protect them.” O’Dell responded.
“What will you name them?” Drakkar could not stop staring at my twin. I still knew how hard it was to be parted – magical or otherwise – from your true mate.
Susan sat next to my sister. “You will be Aluna Star Woods.” She placed a hand on my cheek. It felt warm with love. “You will be Ariana Moon Woods, and you, my dearest baby, will be Antony Gregory Woods.”
“Great names, Susan.” Dracora complimented.
“Thank you, Countess.”
“The time will come when they are Called to this Realm once again.” O’Dell responded. “Until then, their true-names and lives must remain a secret.”
“Yes, Granpere,” Susan agreed.
That was the last I heard of the very interesting conversation. When the spell and ritual was done, I felt….different. My mind was the same as it was, but the memory of my life before that moment faded into near-nothingness. I only remember it now as a dream memory, with a little help from one of my closest Draconian friends: The Countess Dracora of Monarch’s Glenn.
Ten Years Later
My name is Ariana Moon. I am fifteen today, almost sweet-sixteen. I reside at the Shore Point Juvenile Detention Center, a ward of the State of California. I grew up in an orphanage not far from here. No one wanted to adopt me. It was probably because of the things I could do, or the way I spoke, or the color of my eyes. Any number of reasons was points against my being adopted into a loving home. Instead, I was “loaned” out to couples who needed a compliant servant.
My first “family” was the Sheridans, whom I met when I was in the hospital two years ago. They wanted me to be their daughter’s keeper; keeping an eye on her and obeying her every whim. Michelle Lambert-Sheridan was a Class A spoiled brat. She would throw fits if she did not get what she wanted, when she wanted it. Of course, her mother and father would comply, encouraging her behavior. I just kept my comments to myself; hoping that one day, Michelle would see the error of her ways and straighten up, before something bad happened to her. So far, there was no such luck.
The second “family” was the one I just ran from: the Dolls. Richard and Rhonda Doll were rich, even more so than the Sheridans. They had no other children to fill their home or help spend their money. Only me, and I was used as a servant even though they lavished me with everything under the sun. Of course, that was a ruse for Child Services. On a normal day, I overheard Mrs. Doll talking on the phone to an elder woman I once knew as Mrs. Gertrude. Turned out, Mrs. Doll was Mrs. Gertrude’s niece, and she was going to sell me back to my old orphanage master. Thinking of the abusive past I left behind, I packed my bag. Once the moon shone bright enough to see by, I ran as fast as I could away from the Doll mansion.
Only to be caught and brought back here: The Shore Point Juvenile Detention Center.
I have been here a week and suffered bruises and scrapes at the hands of bullies. On my first night, they thought it was funny to put ice in a sock and hit me with it. To their surprise and my delight, all bruises and scrapes were healed by morning.
That is one thing the other teenagers hated about me. Another would be the way I spoke. One girl told me I sounded funny, as if I did not know how to speak. I have always spoken like this, as those friendly adults I speak to would call “without using contractions,” such as “can’t,” “won’t,” or “I’m.” Another girl said my eyes looked weird. At a brilliant silver-blue, I would have said the same thing myself had I not been the owner.
There were a few more things I could do that alienated me from the other girls there. One of which was feeling their emotions with something I learned was called Empathy. I sensed one of the girls was in trouble with the warden. I confronted her about it, trying to cheer her up, but she denied it, calling me “freak” and pushing me away. The Center found I could read minds when I was in a group therapy session. The four of us were given a test where the counselor would ask the questions and we would answer them. Somehow, I took the questions out of her mind and answered them, even before she asked them aloud! Even the counselor eyed me as if I were a freak of nature.
Was I a freak of nature?
Nay; you are an Ancient Mystic. A female voice purred in my mind. It was the voice of my good friend Katherine Hawk.
Katherine was a Companion from the Mystic’s Realm of Dreams. According to her, I was a powerful Ancient Mystic that could do anything I wanted in the Realm of Dreams. Guardian O’Dell, Lord of the Mystic Realms, named me his successor when I was seven. He gave me a special necklace that represented my Mystic status and helped me learn to control my abilities.
I know, my friend. I told her sadly. I just want to get out of here and find my family.
Before she could respond, a knock on the door brought me out of my reverie.
“You got a visitor, Moon.” It was Greg, one of the nicer guards.
I stood. “Thank you, Mr. Greg.”
I quietly followed behind him.
My Companion friend peeped up with I have a good feeling about this one, Ariana. You will be fine.
I hope you are right. I teased her. I would be lost without your feline instincts.
No you would not. Katherine purred a giggle. Do you sense the visitor’s compassion as well?
Aye. I answered, agreeing. I have also felt the Goddess’s Hand on me.
He stopped at one of the counseling rooms, turning the knob and opening the door.
I stood facing an attractive teenage girl wearing a stylish blouse with a tweed skirt. She was about five inches taller than my sixty, wore sunglasses on her head and snapped her chewing gum when she saw me. Her legs were crossed as she sat at the table; designer high-heel boots half-way up her calves. I sensed she was no more than six years older than I, yet looked as if she were older. I could tell it was meant to be very deceptive and smart. Her hair was pulled up into a thick ponytail with dark-brown strands hanging down.
Mr. Greg stayed by the door, listening in.
The teenager stood, holding her hand out for me to shake. “Hello, Ariana Moon. My name is Bridget Guy. I’ve come to take you home.”
I politely smiled, hesitating before taking her hand. I was not convinced and stared at her eyes before reading her. “Really.”
“Yes, really.” Bridget supplied, pulling her hand back and shoving it in her pocket. “Read me. Am I legit?”
I used my empathy, sensing nothing but kindness and sincerity. There was no deception in her dark brown eyes. That was a relief. “Yes, and it is nice to meet you, Miss Guy.” I told her simply. “What can I do for you?”
She quickly glanced at Mr. Greg before responding. “Will you please excuse us, sir?”
Mr. Greg shook his head. “Sorry Miss Guy,” he told her. “She is my charge and must be watched over.”
Now I looked at him. “Have I ever caused any undue stress or trouble around here, Mr. Greg?”
He had to think for a moment. “No, Ariana.”
“Then you can trust I will be okay in her capable hands.” I continued my argument. It took him only a moment to nod. “If it makes you feel any better, you may stay at your post outside the door. That way, there is no way I can escape without your knowledge. Agreed?”
His glance went to a smiling Bridget to me before he finally said. “Make it quick.”
I nodded, smiling. “Thank you.”
Almost as soon as the metal door closed behind him, I heard Bridget shriek into her hands. “That was awesome! How did you learn how to do that? I can’t even talk my way out of a paper bag, but you! You basically controlled that guard.”
“Not control.” I told her. “For some reason, I always know what to say.”
“That’s so cool.”
“Thank you.” I said. “Now then, why are you here? You said you were going to take me home?”
“Ah, yes, right.” Bridget cleared her throat. “I’m from a teen detecting agency called the System.”
I knew it! Katherine cried inside my mind.
Katherine! I playfully scolded her, staring at Bridget, who was patiently waiting as I carried on the conversation in my mind. Am I allowed to handle it?
I cleared my throat and sat down. “How do I know you speak the truth?”
Bridget leaned in and looked into my eyes. “What does your empathy tell you about me?”
She knew that about me? But, how? I blinked, studying her. Sure enough, she was telling the truth. “You are sincere and honest, although a bit flighty at times.”
Bridget laughed. “Thought so. Come on, kid. Let’s get out of here.” She paused as her hand hit the knob. Not looking at me, she supplied seriously, “By the way, call me Big Guy. That’s my codename.”
“Codename?” I was puzzled.
Big Guy sighed. “You’ll see soon enough. Trust me.”
“If you insist,” I shrugged. “Anything to stop the circle of hate.”
It was her turn to be confused. “Huh?”
I smiled, echoing. “Trust me.”
Big Guy rolled her eyes and led us out the door. Sure enough, Mr. Greg was still waiting at his post.
“Hurry and get your things.” Big Guy instructed me. “I’ll take care of the legalities.”
I nodded. “Sure thing.”
Going back to the room I stayed was going to be hard. If anyone was there waiting, they were certain to bully me, just like always. If not, and I somehow got away with my belongings without anyone seeing me, I would be grateful.
Turned out, the Goddess was smiling on me today. No one was in the room, so I was able to grab my backpack and hurry back to Big Guy’s side.
I came upon the end of a conversation, with Big Guy saying. “I am an adult, and I have signed the proper papers for her immediate release from this institution and into the care of Shannon Ryan at Shore Point Academy.”
She pulled a manila folder out of her shoulder bag, handing it to him. Mr. Greg glanced through the pages with wide eyes. After closing the folder, he looked back at her. “Miss Guy, I apologize. Had I known –”
Bridget winked at him. “You didn’t know, and it’s okay.”
“I thought the Academy closed down years ago because the owner died during renovations?”
“Oh, it was, for a while.” Bridget shrugged, “The owner’s niece opened it back up on her eighteenth birthday and we’ve been prosperous since.”
They spoke as if I were not there. Usually that is a good thing; I could learn more that way, but this was idle chatter. I cleared my throat and crossed my arms.
They turned to my scowl. “As interesting as it is to hear all about this Academy I will be attending; would it be too impatient of me to suggest we leave?”
“Oh! Oh, right,” Bridget laughed nervously. “I almost forgot.” She turned back to Mr. Greg. “Now that the papers are in order, we’ll be on our way.” She wrapped her arm through one of mine and smiled at him one last time before shoving past him.
Once we were in the hallway, she broke into a run toward the door that led outside.
“Wait!” I cried, yanking away and rubbing my arm so it no longer hurt. “What is the rush? Why are we in such a hurry?
“I’ll explain later,” Big Guy harried. “We need to go, like now.”
I took a deep breath and ran behind her. I did my best to keep up with her, but she was fast. She stopped at a long black limo and opened the door for us.
Once we were both in and the limo was racing away, I had to know. “What is going on? Why were we running?”
“It’s hard to explain,” Bridget said, nearly out of breath.
“Please try, because I am terribly confused.” I told her. “Is there someone after you?”
“Not me.” She shook her head. “You.”
I blinked. “Me? Who would want to chase me?”
“Does the name Helen Gertrude ring a bell?” Bridget asked.
She would have to say that name.
“I should have known,” I groaned. “She used me as a compliant slave to any family that would pay handsomely for my services.”
“Right,” Bridget agreed. “Unfortunately, Mrs. Gertrude isn’t done with your so-called “services.” Now that they somehow found out where you were, we had to butt in. Fortunately for you, we got here first.”
“For which, I am grateful.” I supplied. “I am to understand they are right behind us?”
“Not yet, but they will be if we don’t high-tail it out of here.” Bridget turned and knocked on the tinted window that separated the cab from the driver. “Book it, Landry.”
I felt the limousine lurch forward and speed on the freeway. Appalled by his driving skills – he would be cited for more than three violations should he get pulled over – I closed my eyes and hung on tight.
“Crud! They’re gaining on us!” I heard Bridget yelp. “Take the secret route. It’s the only way.”
I heard Landry chuckle from the driver’s seat. What was he laughing about? We were being chased and he was laughing!
“I would appreciate arriving safely at our destination.” I forced out, opening my eyes. I was being tossed from one side of the seat to another. “Preferably with my lunch intact and body in one piece, sir.”
“Relax, Ariana Moon.” Landry said. “Trust me.”
“He knows what he’s doing; just let him do it, okay?” Bridget asked.
I huffed, keeping my mouth shut. The winding roads buzzed by me, making me dizzy.
“We’re almost there anyway, so you can relax.” Bridget tried.
“Please stop telling me to relax when it is my life on the line.” I ordered.
Soon, the limousine slowed to the speed limit and I looked out the window. There was nothing to look at but farms with cattle, horses, sheep and pigs. I opened the window to close my eyes and take a whiff. It smelled of peace, harmony and very earthy. For some reason, it smelled right; like home, but better. It was like I owned the land, and I was home. Was this Academy in the country?
More importantly, was there a country gal hiding in me somewhere?
I let the sights fly by, soon falling into a daydream.
I pictured myself and a young man overlooking the ocean, holding hands and walking along the shore. My heart skipped just thinking about him.
He snaked his arm around my waist so we stopped in our tracks and I was able to look into his eyes.
Mahogany-brown eyes, black-rimmed frames covering them and the feelings of infatuation for me growing with each moment we were together. He was taller by a couple of inches; perfect in every way. I had searched for him – or someone like him – all my life, and found him in a dream. The more time we spent together in the Dream Realm, the more I was pulled to him as the Young Guardian to heal his inner demons. At the same time, he was somehow pulled to me to do the same.
Unlike most of the people in my life so far, his intentions were sincere.
I smiled at the image.
“What are you smiling about?” Big Guy teased, watching me.
I shrugged out of my daydream, blushing as I opened my eyes. “A little fantasy.”
Big Guy was interested, if not confused. “What’s that, if you don’t mind my asking?”
“I call him my Imaginary Romeo.” I supplied. “I see him only in my dreams, but the thoughts of him keep me warm at night.”
My gaze went back to the window and I fell asleep as soon as my eyes closed. My mind and magic was exhausted.
I awoke from my nap nearly an hour later when I was tapped on the shoulder. Blinking back to life, I found the limo stopped. “Where are we?”
“We’re here!” Big Guy announced as I followed her out of the limo.
I shivered when the wind tickled my hair and the smell of warm magic welcomed me from inside. “Where is here?”
My question would be answered as we drove up an elongated driveway that led to a huge mansion-like building. Sure enough, as we reached the building, I could see echoes of letters spelling out “Shore Point Academy.”
Echoes of letters on a building usually meant it was no longer what it said. This, of course, meant Bridget lied to me.
I watched as my escort turned to the driver. “Thanks again, Landry. That’ll be all.”
The driver lit a cigarette, his eyes wide as he asked. “See you later Big Guy?”
“You bet.” Big Guy nodded with a playful wink. “I’ll win my twenty bucks back tonight.”
I stood by her when we watched him drive away. After a moment, I spoke up, crossing my arms. “You lied to me.”
Bridget sighed. “Only about the Academy part and I’m sorry.”
“There’s someone else here who will be able to explain it to you better.” Bridget walked, tapping a number into a security keypad and sliding a card through the slot. “Her name is Shannon Ryan, and she’s the owner slash boss of this place. Follow me; I’ll take you to her office.”
Tugging the backpack tighter on my back, I could do nothing but obey. There was something special about this place.
Perhaps this Shannon Ryan woman will be able to tell me why.
The Imaginary Romeo
Bridget was quiet as she walked me down the many confusing halls of this academy-like building. It was set up like an old college dorm, so she told me the truth about that. We stopped at a set of double-doors.
“Go through those doors and past the rows of computers to another door with her name on it.” Bridget instructed me, pointing.
“You are not going in with me?” I queried.
“Sorry Ariana,” She shook her head. “I have work to do, but I’ll see you later. Okay?”
I nodded. “Aye.”
Slowly, I opened the double-doors and could sense the amount of power in the room ahead of me. There was a spell here – a protection spell; I could smell it. Someone wanted to remain secretive. I closed my eyes and opened my empathy.
Somehow, I already know this Shannon Ryan. I thought both to myself and Katherine, if she was still around. I touched the door, immediately feeling the same tingle of magic behind it as I had when I sensed a man with the same surname two years ago. He had silver-blue eyes and dark-as-night hair and called himself a Mystic Wizard. Could they be related?
Before I could say or think anything, I heard a woman say, “Come right in, Ariana. My name is Shannon Ryan and I’m the Chief here at the System.”
I opened my eyes to meet the silver-blue – no wait – brown – no, they were definitely silver-blue eyes of a college-aged woman with long, wavy black hair and a bright smile.
I had to ask, since it was on my mind. “Are you related to Stephen Ryan?”
She smiled, nodding. “Yep. He’s my cousin. I heard he helped you in the hospital.”
I smiled. “He was very nice to me, but he disappeared before I could thank him.”
“You’ll get your chance.” Shannon explained, gesturing to a chair. “Take a seat. Your partner will be here any minute.”
“Wait – partner?” I asked, confused. The questions were going a mile a minute; such as, “What is this place, anyway?”
“Thought you’d never ask.” Shannon sat at a large oak desk and explained what the System was all about.
Originally, it was an Academy, owned by the county, but it closed down due to the Great Depression. Her uncle Theodore Ryan, aunt Dixilynne and uncle’s best friend Mikhail McNathaniels thought of the perfect idea: renovate the worn-down place and disguise it as an Academy and Home for the children no one wanted. (This made me wonder why I was not sent there) Anyway, Theodore Ryan died during renovations and Dixilynne was left to mourn, with Mikhail to comfort her. After a while, mourning was over and it was time to restart fresh. By that time, Mikhail – Mick, as he was known – and Dixilynne had totally different ideas for the buildings, so they went their separate ways. Along the way, her younger sister Sarabeth dying shortly after giving birth to Shannon, and a new arrival in Susan’s daughter had Dixilynne pretty busy. More children came along as she made calls and set everything up for her vision: still disguised as an Academy, yet funded by the county and private money (mostly Theodore’s). She turned the Academy into a place called The System Agency – a teen detecting agency, where teenagers and older children would be trained detectives first, and in specialties second.
“That all sounds good, but what am I doing here?” I asked her. “How did Big Guy know I could Read her?”
Shannon shrugged. “I told her so, as I sent her on the assignment myself.”
“How did you know about me?”
She smiled, blinking. “Come on, Ariana Moon.” She teased. “You can figure that out for yourself.”
The eyes. She could change her eye color. That could only mean one thing.
“You are an Ancient Mystic as well.” I surmised. “Does anyone else here know that about me?”
Shannon shook her head. “Not if you don’t want them to.”
Wow…it’s been WAY too long for me. A year without internet while being pregnant, and now raising a 7 month old son! Where has the time gone?
That’s the main reason I’ve not been online for so long. Being a full-time mom and housewife is tough when one is trying to get her writing career back on track. *cough*cough*(yeah, right). I have, however, been working hard on rewriting my first novel — again — for the ten thousandth time.
Eshon Draconis Dratianos-DeRose (that’s his legal name) is now 7 months and “almost” crawling. He’s on a set tentative schedule, so I know when to do what and how. He actually sleeps through the night, listening to music to fall asleep. He’s eating baby food three times a day, bottles 3-4 times a day, and is pretty normal with everything else. We call him “Monkey” because he likes to climb, use his arms to hang onto Daddy’s arm as well as using his legs as hands to grasp. It’s cute, but annoying when I’m trying to feed him.
BTW — I no longer have a Twitter or Facebook, nor do I have a MySpace account anymore. It got too tough to handle. Oh, and I don’t play AE Games anymore, so don’t ask. This, and MSN Messenger are the only places to find me anymore. Sorry.
The Update for the Day: Besides what I wrote above, I’m working on my first novel — again. Young Guardian Saga #1: Young Guardian and the Dominionites. YGS1 is now in Young Guardian’s perspective, with add-ins from the Draconian-side of the story. You’ll be surprised when I finally get it posted, just how much has changed from the original (still available from iUniverse.com: Young Guardian Saga #1: Welcome to Your Destiny! by Adella DragonStar). Some of the beginning of YGS1 is already in YGS1 Experimental ReWrite.
Gotta go; Eshon needs his dinner!
LadyAdellandra, mom of Eshon and wife of Draconis.
Just poppin’ in for a bit to give everyone a heads-up to where I’ve been. For the past 6 months, life has kept me pretty busy and unable to cruise the net. I haven’t forgotten the site, or my friends and fans.
The most that has kept me busy is my pregnancy. I’m now 7 months pregnant and still don’t know if it’s a boy or girl. Whenever we have an ultrasound/sonogram, the babe won’t let us see! I’m preparing for the day our miracle babe is born by keeping busy.
I’ve been updating the most popular of stories, and apologize for any hurt feelings. I’ve changed names to protect the innocent, but the stories are basically the same. I’ll try to keep working on them as much as possible as to not disappoint.
For now, I bid you a fond adieu and a prosperous new year!
If we know the perfect location, but don’t know how to describe it since we’ve never been there, we must research. Once we get the characters and places we want, we must develop more than just the characters or storyline.
My type of research comes online or in the form of ebooks I’ve collected on various subjects, including those I never thought I’d need. It also comes from the various Chronicles I’ve already written. When writing, I ask myself numerous questions, such as: “Who is Ruby’s mate, and how does she tie in with the Mystics?” “What Clan is Sapphire from?” “Does Claudia have Photographic Memory or is she strictly a healer?”
So, I go back to the Chronicles for answers; mainly, from three different documents I keep updated and plenty busy developing.
90% of my information is in those files alone, little notes I’ve written myself. I keep them in the top list on MSWord, and back them up often.
Yes, I know it wastes precious time writing the story I may be working on, but I have to get the information right and have it make sense both in my mind and on the page as I write it.
Development of Characters and Storyline may not be that hard for some, but sometimes it can be. Sometimes, it makes me wish I had chosen another occupation instead of writing.
Looking back now, I’m pondering the “Why did I write that?” “I Wrote that?!” and “When did I write that?” questions as I organize my many megabites worth of writing an documents.
Take “Young Guardian Trilogy”, for example.
It began as a Saga that started as a dream. Really! At first, it was supposed to be Dream World Leapers, then Dream World Crusaders, and finally Dream Realm Crusaders. A Single book became a Trilogy, then Saga, and putting them all together again, another Trilogy. Dream World Leapers Trilogy soon became Young Guardian Saga, and finally the Trilogy it’s known for today. Even the main character’s name has changed: Bonnie Louise (and her twin Jennifer Lynne) to Ariana Moon (and her twin Aluna Star). The Chronicles are constantly changing, facts rearranging and family lines discovered and rediscovered. Names and places have changed, people learned, loved and grew, and not even I knew what would happen next until flashes of scenes and ideas went through my mind. After several years, and several drafts later, Young Guardian Trilogy has been perfected.
Just when I think all is perfect and characters are at their best, the Fates throw me a wild card.
Enter Draconis Vilinos Dratianos, Lord Emperor of the Dragon Nations and Dracora’s oldest brother. Not the character, Lord Draconis; that’s only the characterization of the real man. The Real Draconis told me things I dreamed and wrote were real. He also let me read his story “Dragon Mystere” to help open the floodgates to a very distinct part of my memory that told me I wasn’t from around here and neither was he.
Memories washed in my mind, and a new storyline opened up. Things happened way back when, and I remembered it all. So, I wrote it down. All of it.
When I was finished, I had a lot of thinking to do. The storyline of my main characters had changed, as did the relationship I had to them. Those who read my writing know my favorite character is the better version of myself: Lady Adellandra Mout’ella Dranna Dratianos; whether she goes by the name Ariana Moon Woods as an Ancient Mystic, Silver Moon Cobrianos as an Illunian, A’isha as the Goddess and Pillar of Light, MoonWolf as the SheWolf of the Mountain Wolf Forest Packs, Akasha as the Ancient Mystic’s Goddess of Spirit, the list of titles and names goes on.
SO – I must go through and change a lot of information, names, places, abilities, people involved; add in the Draconian storyline, as I’m now calling it, and rewrite, reedit and rethink the entire process.
That is why I keep all three of those previously-listed documents handy, and take notes as I go along. Good thing, too; otherwise, I wouldn’t know what was what and who was who.
Why do I do it if it’s such an arduous process? Because that is what I do. I write. If not for my own enjoyment, or escape to other worlds, but because it’s what I DO. That is why I write stories, Chronicles of the Inner Realms if you will, and carry on with my Path.
I Am A Writer.
*has it been a month already?!*
Time Flies When You’re Havin’ Fun!
Greetings from the Inner Realms. Thought I’d get you a Current Events post to let you know what I’ve been up to, in case you haven’t watched my Twitter. (@Lady_Adella).
I’ve worked on organizing, writing, and making most of my longer works better-readable, thanks to Scribd. I’ve written somewhat of a Suggested Reading Order page, telling where to start in the Inner Realm Chronicles. All those on that list, I’ve uploaded to Scribd and linked here, on their pages in the Category: All Inner Realms ReWrites.
As for new writing projects:
- “Across the Realm Portal” has been revamped with the new Scribd format, including working links within the text. I’m now on Chapter 26, stopping there until I can think of what to do with Le Corneille next. (It’s a Doozy!)
- Inner Realm Legacies Category: I’ve written and posted 2 blurb-type entries: Strength of Shadows and Demon Pantheros. While the first is about Derrick “Karrath” Reading’s search for his true-mate, the second was inspired by “Across the Realm Portal”. Sure, I’ve had somewhat of a story planned for each, but no real details until now. There will be more blurb-type entries in the new Category, so stay tuned!
- “DragonWolves of Da’esigil” — Name inspired by @Veluchan, @Eonaleth, @Trydeth and @Ely_AQW (four of my good friends from the games and Twitter), I’ve decided to revive a vague idea I had long ago. Veluchan named the place, while I used the four of them in the story. I’m trying to write and post at least a page-worth of an entry, a little at a time, every day.
- DEVELOPING STORY IDEAS: NOT here yet are the ones I came up with today. Their blurbs are still in the works and they will be added to the new “Legacies” Category soon.
- Sneak peek #1: Tanian Dratianos is the Prince of Mek’anar; he’s also the Central DragonWolf Kingdom’s ruler, with his beloved Eonaleth of the East. What is his story? “Free Spirit DragonWolf.”
- Sneak peek #2: Anton Dranna was supposed to be Leader of the Fire Dragon Warrior Clans, but he was taken away and Blooded an Ancient Mystic. “Anton’s Dream” is the story of what happened before being blooded, upon returning to the Dragon Nations, and choosing between two women he’d come to love. (excerpt already here.)
I could write up everything I have a ‘blurb’ for. I could upload and put it in the new Category. I could…
…but you would be bored to tears and probably confused to bits, so I will refrain from repeating myself and just close this short update of my writings here.
Kateea and Pleasant Journeys!
Head Chronicler of the Inner Realms
Read all about it!
The poem was “The Ballad of Spirit and Shadows,” which is also in my Poetry Section on here.
Please Vote for me and Wish me Luck!
Update: 1Apr2010: After all the votes and support, I came in a very close 2nd. I didn’t make it to the next round, however. Thanks for everything!
Better late than never, I always say.
*No, you don’t*
Welcome to another installment of my personal “Week in Review”. Consider it a Design Notes for my blog. 😉
This week hasn’t been a very productive one but in a couple of places. I’ve worked continuously on “Across the Realm Portal.” I’ve been learning Japanese phrases in Romaji (Japanese using Roman letters), trying to learn Kanji and Hirigana/Katakana (you know, the characters making up the Japanese language), and catching up on my sleep, for the most part.
I don’t know why, but I’ve been a little ill lately. For the past week, I was sleeping a few hours, awake for a few, and down again. Thanks to all those little naps, I got very little writing done.
In the wee-hours when I wanted a break from writing “Across the Realm Portal,” I would try to learn Japanese. Now, the Japanese language can be very intimidating. I’m learning from YesJapan and the FREE flash card program BYKI (which stands for Before You Know It). The newest video on YesJapan is my favorite “Your Self Worth,” which really opened my eyes to my PoV on learning Japanese. It could apply to anything you learn or do! I also search some of the sites I visit for interesting and useful phrases I can easily learn and retain, putting them in MSWord in a collection so I can refer to it later.
As for “Across the Realm Portal,” I have a few people to thank for keeping me motivated in it. @AlanzaDemonica , @Vampiric_AQW , and @Veluchan , my three main readers. Without you, there would literally BE no story. Arigato!
Speaking of, I’ve changed it a little bit. Nothing major, just the Subtitle and size. Alanza and Vampiric, those AQW Player/Friends I have come to adore, have kept me on my toes by noting anything out of place. “There’re guards at the door. How’d she get out so easily?” — that kind of thing. The little bits I don’t catch as I’m writing it. I just go with the flow, ya know?
Hopefully sometime in the near-future, I’ll put up a page on here with words and meanings of the three main languages of all my Inner Realm Chronicles. I’ve started with Draconian (Imperial, the Language of the Dragon Nations), Illunian (Realm of the Illunae), and Ancient Wolf-Speak (The Mountain Wolf Forest Packs in the Realm of Dreams). I’ll try to include words I usually capitalize, like “Earthbound,” “Realmbound,” “Ancient Mystic,” etc, as well as words from the Dweller-Kin dialects and the Ancient Mystics themselves.
For now, I leave you with the Northern (English) version of the Official Motto of Mal’estar:
“Live Strong, Live Free, Live in Peace”
Yeah, sorry ’bout that! *rubs back of her neck, embarrassed*
Welcome to the 2nd Installment of my Weekly Current Events. All the news that’s fit to print, and even some that’s not! On with the show!
This week was a very interesting one.
I managed to finish “The Lost Dragon Empress“, worked on “Across the Realm Portal” until I was (and still am) blue in the face, put up a couple pages of “Lady Adella’s Poetry” and a list of “Dream Realm Sphere Correspondences“, in case anyone was lost in AtRP. Since I haven’t looked at it for awhile, even I noticed I was wrong and quickly corrected it. Other Posts I put up were “The War of the Realms Saga: #1 The Mystic’s Challenge” and “The Crusader Mysteries!: #1: Kelly and the Bomb Squad.”
Wow, that’s enough to make anyone choke on their helping of confusion! So, I’ll sum it up the best I can, just click on the links to read!
- “The Lost Dragon Empress“ The last chapter told a side of who the Empress was before she reunites with her lost love. It takes place shortly after the War of the Realms** and before “Earthbound Monarchs” begins. Ariana Moon is having second thoughts about her relationship with her Earthly Protector, Derrick Reading. She’s also dealing with a strange, yet intriguing black dragon in her thoughts and mind. Who is this black dragon who claims he is “Shadows” to her “Spirit”?** Why is her love for Derrick fading? What about their children? Find out for yourself in “The Lost Dragon Empress”!
- “Across the Realm Portal,” as anyone will tell you, has had a bit of a change lately. Not only did I add symbols (♦) for separating the scenes, but a new plot twist has erupted! I even tried my hand at linking references in it (Only one worked so far, and that’s the Japanese translation to “Please Help Me” in the beginning of a scene. Tell me if you’d like more references like this, and I’ll do my best to do it!)
- “Lady Adella’s Poetry“: Ah yes, I’ve revisited my past, reclaimed the ballads, sonnets, poems, rhymes, etc from deep within the crevice of my computer files and alphabetically organized them. One set is from that of my past, and another is from a six-month span during Drake courting me. I wrote so much magical poetry it’s not funny, and I couldn’t keep up. I finally did it and put it in one place; here for you to read. ***
- “Dream Realm Sphere Correspondences” — a reference that came in handy for “Across the Realm Portal.” Neatly puts in table form, making it easier to understand the different magics, crystals, etc. At the bottom, it even outlines when it was briefly seen in the “Inner Realm Chronicles” throughout time. The Sphere itself is a very powerful…item? (too simple)…artifact? (nah, it’s not forgotten from history)…Sphere. Yeah. That’s the only way to explain it. It’s a Sphere.
- “The War of the Realms Saga: #1: The Mystic’s Challenge” — Set six months after “The Young Guardian Trilogy,” this story (novel, really) tells the tale of what happens when a certain Crystal is brought back from the Depths of the Abyss and used by our not-so-nice Dominionite Maiden, Sabrina. Old fiends return, old friends become new, new friends enter and the Dream Realm Crusaders are faced with a challenge unlike any other…
- “The Crusader Mysteries!: #1: Kelly and the Bomb Squad” — In Kelly Reading’s own words, the Mystic Realms’ Enchantress is faced with a mystery she just can’t ignore. Her friends: Cara Daniels, Bradley Allen Schmidt, Josh Stevenson, Krysti Farthay, and Steve Edwards form the 3rd-Generation team of Dream Realm Crusaders. Will they find out what’s making noises in the Catz Mansion without Kelly resorting to using her Ancient Mystic Magic?
There you have it, folks! I’ve been a busy little Lady, now haven’t I?
Stay tuned in the future for more great stories from Lady Adellandra Mout’ella Dranna Dratianos — the Lady Guardian, Empress, and all-around nice gal.****
Until next time —WriteON!
_________________*also a Saga, which means the story is here, too! **”The Ballad of Spirit and Shadows” — Now, in the Poetry pages! ***Some are NOT suited for younger readers, so Reader Beware. ****Otherwise known as “ME!”
Ancient Mystics and Draconians On-Hold
This week has been a hectic one, kind of. I’ve worked on at least three different projects, neither of them were remotely-related to the Ancient Mystics or Draconians.
Let me explain.
Being this is my first Week in Review entry, I guess I’d better tell you what I’ve been up to so far.
I’ve started to organize the site a bit by putting different stories in different categories. I’ve a lot to go, but I’m still hard at work writing, and have hardly any ‘free’ time to do so.
- “Across the Realm Portal” — Constantly being updated, constantly being deleted before replaced, always written directly from Microsoft Word 2007, which has a neat little feature called “Publish” in the main menu bubble thingy. Tweeted at least once every couple of days for the updates, and always interestingly entertaining. At least, I think so; but then, I’m the writer, what do I know?
This story centers around a couple from two different Realms; one from Lore (As all Players of AE Games knows this world) and one from a place called The Illunian Realm. Hikari is from this Realm, and seeks the assistance of her sister in Lore, the Lady Adellandra. That’s not where the story begins, however. It begins when the Lady Adellandra wishes to take her two friends, Alanza DeMonica and Le Corneille Foster, on a ride through the Realm Portal to the Illunian Realm. Before the day is out, Le Corneille is madly in love with Hikari, called her “Chosen One” and is part of a weird mystery through a strange warp in the Realms’ timeline.
- “Demonica” — Okay, I admit it; I may be a little obsessed with my AQW friend, Alanza, but I couldn’t resist placing her in the Inner Realm Chronicles. It was just too strong of a feeling! I mean, this story is about Alanza Dranna, the newest “Princess” of an Inner Realm’s Dragon Clan. She’s supposedly an Heir to the Fire Dragon Warrior Clan, but she’s not of-age to claim it, nor is she fit to do so yet. Enter, from the mighty Empire of Mal’estar, Sir Airemus Dranna, her ‘unknown’ brother and his son Sir Anton Dranna.
Once hearing the names of his parents, the King and Queen of the Fire Dragon Warrior Clan, Sir Airemus Dranna, a proud Fire Dragon Knight in service to the previous Lord Emperor, Brakkon Dratianos, is reminded of a certain promise he made to them on the night of his Birthing Day and Crowning ceremony. To make up for his leaving the Clan to be with the Lady Empress Peacemaker’s Draconian Army, he promised his parents that his first-born son would return to succeed him. At this point in the story, Airemus, Anton, and the sentry the King and Queen of the Clan sent, are on their way to the Clans to discuss the matter.
- “The Unnamed Collab” — yeah, sorry folks, eventhough I’ve worked on this with two friends of mine, it’s nowhere near its completion. No real storyline is set, it’s just 3 of us writing parts and passing it on to the other. It’s just something fun for us to do together, and basically learn from each other how to ‘write’. Once it’s nearing completion, I’ll edit, ask for permission, and post it up, giving credit where due. Until then, we’re all out of luck.
However, there are a couple more that I’ve worked on, but not much. Even though they were part of the Mystics and Draconians, and only a few pages were written in them this past week, they still count as work.
- “The Lost Dragon Empress“, for one, has had about a page worth done past the original stopping point. This story is about my many incarnations. With each incarnation, I meet and lose my beloved Draconis Dratianos, my mate and Emperor.
- “The Inner Realms Chronicle Diaries: The Crusaders” I was bored one night and decided to put the previous Young Guardian Trilogy into my own words in the form of diary entries. So far, I’ve written to the point I reunite with Katherine Hawk, my first Feline Companion friend in the Realm of Dreams. It’s going to take a while, I know, but there’s time. It’s for fun, and writing has always been fun.
Well, that’s it for now, folks! Until next time,