Monday, September 23, 2013

Happy Birthday, Sky!

She ran down the beach, casting occasional glances behind her. She couldn't believe this was happening. And so early in the morning.
This had to be some kind of record.
She changed direction slightly, running for the cover of the trees, hoping to lose her pursuer. She paused briefly to catch her breath, looking behind her. She saw slight movements heading for the trees and she bolted again, deeper into the cover of the trees.
Her lungs were burning and her legs were screaming. She saw a small opening in one of the trees, just large enough for her to get through, and she ran for it, diving in.
She righted herself and found that the opening was larger than the actual crevice. She reached out and found some branches that she used to semi-hide the opening, leaving just enough room for her to see out.
She rested her head against the wood and took deep breaths, trying to get her breathing back to normal.
She looked out the small window she'd left herself to see out of, she saw nothing. No rabbits, no deer. Nothing one would expect in a forest.
She couldn't hear anything either, she realized. No birds sang.
It was incredibly creepy.
There was no sign of her pursuer, for which she was grateful, it gave her time to rest. Not that she could stretch out her legs in her hiding place, but it was a small price to pay, she reasoned.
She wiggled about until she was at least semi-comfortable, and she set to watching the forest outside, as she thought back to what had led her to being here in the first place.
                                                                       *  *  *
She sat down at the table, munching on a bagel, thinking back to a weird dream she'd had that night. She shook herself as her twin brother came in and went straight to the fridge, as he usually did, and grabbed the milk, which, again, he usually did, and drank from the carton.
Which was why she refused to drink the milk. At all.
He finally noticed her, sitting there, staring at him. He gave me a look that said "What?"
And I pointed at his face. "You have a milk mustache, and milk running down your chin."
He wiped his face with his sleeve. "Thanks." He said. She shrugged and took another bite of her bagel.
He sat down next to her and also grabbed a bagel from where their mother had lain them out earlier that morning.
"Sylvia is coming over today." He told her through a mouthful of bagel. "So could you do me a favor and make yourself scarce later?"
Sylvia was his girlfriend and she was a stuck up snob, in Sally's opinion.
"Sal?" He asked. She looked at him.
"Yeah, ok, whatever." She said.
"Sal, you ok? You seem distracted?" He asked.
"Well," She began, then hesitated.
"Well what?" He asked.
He was her brother, older by just two minutes and twenty-four seconds, but he might make fun of her if he knew of the weird dreams she'd been having.
She finally sighed and told him about the dream. She watched his expression change dramatically, from concerned brother, to about to burst out laughing, to a serious, weirded out one that she had never seen on his face before.
"That was..." He began, then paused, searching for the right word. "Odd."
She nodded.
"Sally! Harry!" Their mother called as she walked in the front door. "I'm home!"
They had been named after their mothers' favorite movie: When Harry met Sally. They both hated their names.
"Hi mom!" Harry said as their mom walked in the kitchen.
"Hi sweetie," She said. "Sorry I had to run out on you two today, but there was a mess at the office which, naturally, I'm the only one who knows how to fix, which is strangely convenient considering I'm still the newbie."
Their mother worked at a law firm, Brighten & Carl, and she would often get frustrated that they would throw most of the workload on her because, as she would say "They're lazy."
"It's no problem, mom." She said. "Did you get it fixed?"
"Finally," Her mother answered, getting the milk out of the fridge. "It only took about half a million years."
Sally smiled at her mothers' joke, but the smile vanished when her mother began pouring the milk in her coffee.
"Uh, mom," Sally said. "I wouldn't drink that."
"Why not?" Her mother asked. "Is it expired? I just bought it, it should still be good."
"It's not that it's expired," Sally explained. "It's just that Harry.."
"You drank from the carton again, didn't you?" She asked, looking pointedly at Harry, who was trying to slump down on the stool and hide behind his bagel.
"Maybe," He said, dragging the word out a bit.
Their mother put the carton on the counter. "What have I told you about drinking from the carton?" She said.
"Uh," He said, trying to remember. "That it's bad manners?"
"That, and?" She said.
"Uh." He said, looking desperately around the kitchen, as if an item might jog his memory. "It's, uh.."
"It's rude and it's inconsiderate." Their mother said. "There are other people in this house besides you, Harry; once you move out and get your own house then you can drink from the carton all you want, clear?"
"Crystal." He said. "Sorry, mom."
She sighed. "It's ok; what am I going to do with you?"
"I say hug him and squeeze him and call him George." Sally suggested, earning a jab in the rib by her brother.
Her mother glanced at the clock. "You'd better get going if you don't want to be late."
Sally got up and grabbed her backpack and headed for the door.
"Bye mom! See you later!" She called as her brother followed her out the door.
"So, what do you want to do tomorrow? First day of summer vacation and all." Harry said, walking backwards up the sidewalk.
"You know I hate it when you do that." She commented. "I don't know; go to the pool, I guess."
"But we go there every year!" He whined. "I wanna go to the amusement park."
"Why don't you take Sylvia?" She asked. He snorted.
"And mess up her makeup? She'd never get past the gate."
Sally stopped. "Why do you stay with her? You know she's a snob, so why are you still dating her?"
He paused and thought a moment.
"Don't hurt yourself." Sally said absently as a new memory of her dream drifted to the surface.
She saw a horrifying face, and an arm reaching out towards her, screaming her name.
A car honked as it past and made Sally practically jump out of her skin.
"Hey hey hey." Sylvia said as she pulled up alongside the sidewalk and parked.
She got out and ran over to Harry and hugged him.
"Oh, hi Mary, I didn't see you there." She said.
"It's Sally," Sally corrected. "And that's ok, didn't notice you either, despite that outfit."
Sylvia glared at her and turned her back on her and focused on Harry.
"Want a lift to school?" She asked.
"Sure, can Sally come?" he asked.
She shook her head. "Sorry, car only seats two."
"It's a convertible that seats five." Sally pointed out, looking pointedly at the car. "If you want to make an excuse not to have me along, fine; just make sure that I can't see the car."
Sylvia was speechless.
"You know, syl, I think I'll walk today," Harry said. "It's a nice day, and I want to spend some time with my little sis. You understand, right?"
Sylvia's lower lip began to tremble. "You hate me don't you?" She said, her voice sounding on the verge of tears. "Fine, I can take a hint."
She spun and walked over to her car, started it up, and drove off.
"Quite the charmer you've got there." Sally commented as she started down the sidewalk again, leaving her brother and his girlfriend to take the car.
The day went by as usual, boring History assignments, and obnoxious math ones. Eventually, the horrendous day came to an end, and she was allowed to go home.
She passed the park on her way home and paused. It had been a long time since she'd last been here.
She walked up to the slides and walked up them like she used to all the time when she was a kid. She slid back down and laughed when her momentum took her forward too much and she flew off of the slide and onto the plastic grass that covered the play-area.
She dumped her backpack on one of the picnic tables and continued to run up the slides and then sliding back down; and then she ran over to the swings and swung as high as she could before leaping off to see how far she could get.
It was good to be a kid again.
By the time she got back to her backpack again, she had been laughing so much she was practically bent double and her sides hurt like crazy. She sat down and let the laughter die a bit before she attempted to walk home.
When she finally got her laughter under control, she picked up her backpack and began walking towards the trees which led to her house when she an odd sound made her freeze. She stood there for a moment, listening.
It sounded like a cross between a lawnmower and a cow having a who-can-make-the-most-obnoxious-sound contest.
"What in the world..." She muttered as she started walking towards the sound. She was about to pass a large oak tree when someone grabbed her from behind, placing their hand over her mouth to keep her from screaming.
She squirmed, trying to shake whoever it was off.
"Be still." The person whispered in her ear. She stopped struggling, but she was still shaking in fear. Was she being abducted?
Something passed the oak tree caught her eye and she tried to turn her head to look at it, but the hands wouldn't let her. "Don't move." the voice said.
She looked out of the corner of her eye to try and see what it was and her blood went cold at the sight of it.
It had the face of an otter, the antlers of a moose, the torso looked like that of a bodybuilder, and the legs were that of a horse.
She whimpered, the sound muffled by the stranger's hand.
It paused a moment, sniffing the air, and then it held out its hand, and, with the claws of a grizzly, carved a symbol in the air.
It started glowing and the creature stepped inside, vanishing in a flash of light.
The stranger released her and stepped back and she spun to face them.
Behind her was a man with golden hair and bright blue eyes glued on the spot where the creature had just been.
"Who are you?" She managed to croak.
The man ignored her and walked over to the place where the symbol had hovered just above the ground.
"Albertron." He muttered. "What the hell is it doing awake?"
"What are you talking about?" Sally asked. "What was that thing?"
He looked up at her, his eyes searing into hers. "You will forget what you saw."
"No I won't who can forget a mutant bodybuilder?" She said. "Answer my questions! Who are you? What was that?"
He paused, his eyes studying her.
"Albertron." He said.
"What is that?" She asked. "What's an Albertron?"
"It's a creature that is supposed to be asleep." He said, his eyes once more studying the ground.
"Are all of them asleep? Are you its babysitter? Did it not want to take a nap anymore?"
He looked up at her again. "There is only one Albertron and that was it; it is supposed to be asleep, and no I am not a, as you said, 'babysitter,'" He said.
"What's your name?" she asked.
"Why do you ask me that?" He asked, his eyes narrowing slightly.
"Did I strike a nerve or something?" She asked. "What's wrong with wanting to know someone's name?"
"You are only human after all, I should not expect you to know my culture." he said and brushed passed her.
"Hey!" she said, running after him, dumping her backpack on the way. His eyes were on the ground, following some trail only he could see. "What are you doing?"
"You ask a lot of questions for a human." He said, not taking his eyes off of the ground.
"You don't give a lot of answers." She retorted. "This whole mysterious thing is getting old real quick."
He stopped and looked up at her. "You are a pest."
"Well thanks," she said sardonically. "I try; are you going to answer my questions?"
"No." he said and continued walking.
She stopped and just stared after him as he walked and turned and stalked back to her backpack, glanced back at him and saw he'd knelt on the ground again.
She rolled her eyes at the human bloodhound and started walking home, putting the entire event behind her.
When she got home, she saw Sylvia's car outside and groaned. She didn't see her mom's car so she just continued walking past her house, pulling out her cellphone and dialing the home phone.
"Hello?" Her brother asked.
"It's me." She answered. "I thought I'd let you know I'm heading to Jordan's house."
"Oh, uh, alright." He said. There was a pause. "You saw Syl's car, didn't you?"
"I see; I'll call you when she's gone."
"Thanks; talk to you later."
And they hung up.
It took her twenty minutes to get to Jordan's house. And when she rang the doorbell, Jordan's mom answered the door.
"Hi Sally." Mrs. Garde. "How are you?"
"I'm good, you?" Sally said.
"I'm alright."  Mrs. Garde answered with a smile. "Does Jordan know you're here?"
"No, it was kind of a spur of the moment thing." Sally said, and then elaborated when she saw Jordan's moms expression. "Harry's girlfriend is at the house."
"I see." Mrs. Garde said with a laugh. "You still don't like her, huh?"
"Not even a little bit." She answered. Mrs. Garde laughed and stepped aside to let Sally in, closing the door behind her.
An hour later, she got a call from her brother, saying that his girlfriend had left.
She began the walk home, thinking about all the homework she would have to do, as she could never study at Jordan's house and she found herself thinking about the mysterious man in the park and the horrible creature she had seen.
That thought brought an image of the creature into her mind and she shuddered away from it.
Then she heard the growl.
                                                                 * * *
Bram walked around the bare patch of trees in the park, waiting for the creature to show its face again.
He's pictured it in his mind a hundred times, yet it still didn't show. He cursed, looking up at the setting sun.
Just as he was about to call it a night, he felt it.
He felt the creature re-enter this reality and spun, ready to attack it, but it wasn't there. He stood there, puzzled, when the breeze brought a blood curdling scream to his ears and he cursed, taking off in the direction of the scream.
How had he forgotten the girl?
                                                                 * * *
Sally ducked a swipe of those grizzly claws as it advanced on her, and all she could do was run, trying not to cry in terror.
The creatures' otter face was fixed in a snarl, showing fangs that looked like they belonged on a saber-tooth tiger.
It swiped again and this time she couldn't dodge all of it, and the force knocked her to the ground, winded.
It was on her in nothing flat, its claws ready to disembowel her or take her head, she wasn't sure which, but she found herself wishing for the decapitation, at least then she'd be dead faster.
Suddenly, something silver thudded into its chest, sending the creature reeling away, batting at it with its claws, scratching itself in the process.
The man from the park walked up firing what looking like an old fashioned pistol at the creature.
She tried desperately, not for the first time, to remember what he had called it but to no avail.
The man knelt next to her, not taking his eyes off of the creature, and pulled her to her feet and shoved her behind him and started backing up, firing another shot as the creature began walking forward.
It snarled, showing its fangs again.
"Don't think about it." The man whispered to her. "It gets stronger the more you think about it, so just clear your head, try and think of puppies or kittens."
She closed her eyes and pictured her favorite book, Skulduggery Pleasant being autographed by the author, Derek Landy, and she kept that image in her head.
"Good, just keep doing that." The man whispered.
She heard the creature snarl and then the gun again and she put her hands on her ears to try and block out the sound.
"Okay, you can open your eyes now." The man said and she did.
"Where is it?" She asked, scanning the ground for the body.
"It left, decided you weren't worth the effort if it had to go through me and my gun." He explained.
"Right.." She said. "Are you going to tell me who you are this time?"
He paused and she could of sworn she saw the wheels turning in his head as he thought it over. "You can call me Bram."
"Bram? As in Bram Stoker?" She asked.
"I do not know who that is." He answered.
"Okay then, Bram, what's going on? What's with the whole mysterious act?" She asked.
"It is my job to protect the humans, and you are one of them," He said. "The less you know, the safer you are."
"Yeah, a lot of good that did me." She muttered.
"You summoned the creature because you thought about it," Bram said. "But how did it know to go through your thoughts?"
"What do you mean?" Sally asked.
"It usually ignores human thoughts, but for you it seemed to go out of its way to attack you."
"Well, don't I feel special." she said sardonically.
"There's something different about you," He said. "I don't know what it is, but it's there, and it appears to have attracted things from my world."
"Well, that's not scary at all." she said with a nervous laugh. "What do I do?"
"Go home." He said simply. "There's nothing you can do, just keep thoughts of that creature OUT of your mind, I don't like making house calls."
"What am I supposed to do if it comes back?" She asked as he started walking away.
"Hide until I get there," He said. "I'll be able to sense if it comes through again."
she opened her mouth to say something but he was already out of earshot, she glanced around her before breaking into a run towards her house.
                                                                  * * *
The next few days went by without incident, and she managed to keep pictures and thoughts of the creature from her mind, though thoughts of the mysterious Bram were stubborn and refused to leave, and at one point she briefly wondered if thinking about him would summon him, before shocking herself out of it.
She did NOT have a crush on him.
But some part of her wondered how much of that was the truth.
Three days after the incident, she had almost gotten back to her normal routine, though she still had weird dreams every night.
That afternoon, as she was walking home from school through the park, some instinct told her to hide, and she listened to it, darting behind a tree.
There was a strange sort of buzzing sound, similar to the sound the crea-
She stopped herself before she could fully form the thought, and she amended it. Similar to the sound she heard at the incident, and disappearing just as quickly as it had arrived.
After a moment, she heard voices speaking in a language she didn't recognize before they conveniently switched to English.
"What language are we speaking now?" One of the voices asked.
"I believe it to be English, how remarkable." The second voice sounded full of almost awe.
"I have never spoken English before, how does it sound?" The first asked.
"Glorious, how does mine sound?"
"Gentleman if you could stop talking for a moment." A familiar voice interrupted the men's' chatter.
"Why have you brought us here, Bram?" The first asked, sounding all business now.
"I have found an interesting case." Bram answered. "A human who can summon monsters."
"That's not so unusual." The second said. "We've had cases where humans think up something that they believe is completely original and then we have to capture their 'pretend' creatures and lock them up."
"I know, but this girl doesn't have that kind of... imagination." Bram said. "She was walking home and summoned the Albertron."
"The Albertron?!" The second man exclaimed.
How did she summon THAT?" the first demanded.
"I have no idea, but she must be pretty powerful if she can summon one of the most dangerous creatures in existence."
Sally's mind was full of questions. Powerful?
"What do we do?" the first asked. "Someone that powerful won't allow their memory to be altered."
"I know, that's why I didn't." Bram said.
"What do we do?" the second asked.
"We keep an eye on her, but do not talk to her unless she's in danger." Bram said. There was silence, and Sally guessed that the other two men were nodding.
She heard footsteps and she walked quickly away, making sure to keep the tree between her and their line of sight.
The entire walk home, she kept thinking about what they said.
How were they even creating those portal-things? She thought. closing her eyes and picturing the symbol the incident had created, making the same movements in the air as it had.
When she opened her eyes, she wasn't on the sidewalk anymore: she was in a forest.
She froze.
What happened?
She spun in a full 360 and took in her surroundings.
Everywhere she looked there were trees. She lived in the city, there shouldn't be this many trees except in the park, which only had a couple of trees.
She heard a rustle in the trees behind her and she turned. And then she heard it.
The familiar growl.
She gasped and dropped her backpack and ran, not knowing where she was heading, just that she had to get away from that thing, eventually ending up at a beach, she looked behind her and saw the bushes moving as the thing, the Albertron, followed her.
She picked a direction and began running.
                                                                     * * *
She peeked out of the hole, holding her breath, but never seeing anything. Her breath came heavily as panic spread through her.
She closed her eyes and concentrated on Bram's face, hoping to somehow contact him the same way one could summon the creature.
She shook her head, a smile spreading across her lips. She still couldn't bring herself to say the things name, just in case she summoned it, even though she wasn't sure if the summoning worked if you were in the same place as it was.
She caught her breath as she heard footsteps echoing through the trees, she waited for the creature to step into her line of sight, but it never did, the footsteps instead walking off.
She released her breath and tried to adjust so that her foot, which she was sitting on, didn't go to sleep.
She closed her eyes again and concentrated once more on Bram, hoping against hope that he would show up and scare the monster off with that gun again and take her home.
Please, please, please. She said, almost projecting the thought towards him. Help me.
And then she felt something she wasn't expecting. She felt a sort of pull at her mind and she could picture Bram, his face puzzled before it vanished.
Before she knew what was happening, she was drifting off to sleep.
She awoke suddenly to the sound of heavy breathing right outside her hiding space. She held her breath, though her heart was pounding so hard she thought the creature outside could hear it.
She saw the creatures torso and knew it was the Albertron. She clamped a hand over her mouth to stop from whimpering.
It paused just outside her hiding place and she waited for it to turn, see the unusual leaves that were covering her hiding place and discover her.
It turned to face the tree, and her heart started pounding in her chest even harder than it had been.
She closed her eyes, waiting for the inevitable.
Then, she heard the gunshot.
She opened her eyes and saw the Albertron, now facing away from her, with a familiar silver bullet sticking out of its chest.
Bram was here.
Sally almost sobbed with relief as more gunshots rang out, echoing loudly through the forest, sending the Albertron reeling with each bullet.
It snarled and lunged, but Bram shot it in the eye. A perfect shot.
The Albertron stood there for a moment, like it couldn't believe that just happened.
It snarled before turning and running through the trees, its footsteps echoing until the sound faded.
Soon after, Bram came into her view.
"Are you here?" He asked, looking around at the top of the tree.
She moved the leaves and stared at him.
"How did you know I was here?" She asked.
He looked amused. "You told me."
"I did?" She asked.
"Yes." He said.
He smiled. "First things first, let's get you out of that tree, and then you have to tell me your name."
"It's Sally." She said as she took his hand and crawled out of the tree, her legs giving out when she tried to put her weight on them. How long had she been in that tree?
"How did I get here?" She asked. "One minute I'm walking home, the next I'm standing in a forest."
"Your abilities are very strong." He explained as he began leading her through the trees. "You were able to teleport yourself to this reality, with the Albertron."
"But how?" She asked.
He stopped and began tracing a symbol in the air, which began glowing. He grabbed her hand and led her through, and they were in the gym at her school.
She laughed. "I never thought I'd be so happy to see this place."
"Go home, get some rest." He said. "You'll have to wait for answers, I'm afraid, as I don't have all of them right now."
"Just, promise me you wont hide anything, or be elusive anymore, that's really annoying." She said. "And what exactly do you mean by 'my abilities'?"
"I mean your abilities," He said. "You summoned the Albertron, which is no easy task, and you did it without realizing; you transported yourself to the Albertrons prison, which again, is not something for beginners, yet you did it with any seeming effort. I do not know what kind of abilities you may possess, but I will find out."
"How?" she asked, images of UFO probes coming to mind.
"Don't worry, it won't hurt." He said, turning on his heel and walking towards the gym doors leading outside, he opened them, pausing just before he passed through and turned back to her. "And another thing: you were able to contact me from that dimension, which I'm not sure how you managed that, as it gives even the most advanced psychics trouble."
"You're saying I'm psychic now?" She asked.
He nodded. "Indeed you are; but not the kind you see on your television. I'll be in touch."
And he left, leaving Sally alone in the gym with her curiosities.
After a moment of thinking over all that had happened, and when she was sure she wouldn't faint, she walked out the doors he'd left through and headed home, preparing herself for a long wait until she could get the information she needed.
She only hoped she wouldn't have to wait long.

Happy Birthday, Sky!! I hope you like this birthday story I wrote for you, sorry it's kind of long, but I heard a rumor you like long stories lol
Hope you have an awesome birthday and get everything you wanted and lots of cake. Oh yes, we can't forget the cake :D
*hugs and hands birthday cupcake*


Friday, September 20, 2013

Chapter 25

The maid, Alissa, showed her the armory and the scullery, the kitchen and the stables, which made her miss Krennan all the more. She was curious where the visitors' horses were kept, since Alissa told her that all guest horses, and horses seized, were kept in a separate stable, but they weren't allowed to see it, and Deanna didn't really want to get Alissa in trouble, so she let it slide and they continued on the tour.
As Alissa showed her the gardens, she thought about how best to bring up the dungeons.
                                                                          * * *
"So, nice weather we're having, huh?" Cayle said after what seemed like hours of silence.
His friends just glanced in his direction. He sighed.
"Any idea how we're gonna get out of here?" Finn asked in a small voice.
"Working on it." Cadman said from where he sat by the bars.
"Finn, why are you shaking?" Alroy asked, noting Finn's shaking hands. Finn shrugged.
"No reason." He said; Alroy gave him a look and he sighed. "Fine; I don't like tight spaces."
"You're claustrophobic?" Alroy asked, and Finn nodded.
"And all of us crammed into this cell isn't exactly helping." He said.
"Understandable." Alroy said, nodding. "We'll get out of here soon, I'm sure Cadman has some idea running through that thick skull of his."
"That's it!" Cadman roared as he lunged at where Alroy reclined on one of the bunks. "What the hell do you have against me?"
Alroy simply looked at him without moving. "I could ask you the same thing."
"I don't trust you," Cadman said, glaring daggers.
"Oh?" Alroy said, not sounding surprised.
"You show up randomly, won't talk about your past, you evade every question we ask about your past and where you come from; not exactly the kind of attitude that inspires trust." Cadman said.
Alroy began to respond, but was interrupted by laughter.
"You all make so much noise, a deaf man would complain." A voice said from the next cell.
"Who are you?" Cayle asked, getting to his feet.
"Me? I'm a nobody." The voice said. "But you seem to be more than that considering the company you keep."
"What?" Cadman asked.
A chuckle. "You'll find out."
"Where are you?" Cayle asked, trying to see through the dark corridor.
"I'm down a spell," The voice said. There was a sound of rustling, and then curses.
"Curse these chains," The voice said.
"We can free you, if you'd like." Cayle offered.
More laughter. "How can you free me if you can't even free yourselves?"
"We'll find a way." Cayle answered.
"So tell me," The voice said, curious. "How did you get yourselves thrown in here?"
"Apparently we trespassed." Cadman said.
"Apparently?" The voice asked.
"We have no idea how we got here," Cayle explained. "We were passing through, following the trail of a girl, and then the next thing we know, we were arrested and then told we had trespassed and needed to await trial."
"What girl?" the voice asked.
"What?" Cayle asked.
"You mentioned a girl." The voice said. "Who?"
"Uh, her name is Deanna." Cadman said, confused at the change in topic.
The voice didn't respond.
"Do you know her?" Cayle asked.
"I did not get her name, but there was a young woman thrown in here not two days ago." The voice said.
Cadman and Cayle shared a glance. "Could we have caught up to her already?" Cadman asked.
"It's possible." Cayle said.
"Caught up to her?" The voice asked.
"Yes we're, uh, searching for her." Cadman said.
"Not to hurt her, though?" The voice asked, a strange edge to his voice.
"Course not." Cayle said before he knew he'd spoken.
"Good," The voice said. "I like her."
"Who are you?" Cayle asked again.
"I told you," The voice said. "I'm nobody."
"What's your name?" Cadman asked.
"Haven't got one."
"Can you give us a name?" Cadman asked.
"Hmm," The voice said. "Call me... Bart."
"Bart?" Cadman and Cayle said together.
"Yes, I rather like that name." Bart said.
Cadman and Cayle shared a look.
The door to the dungeon creaked open and footsteps could be heard, but they were lighter than the guards'.
They approached quickly, stopping at some of the cells, coming closer and closer with every second.
The footsteps grew ever so close and then they paused outside a nearby cell.
"What are you doing here?" Bart demanded. "If you got away you should stay away!"
There was the sound of metal on metal and then the sound of a door swinging open, and then whispers.
"Thank you," Bart said, relief obvious in his voice. "Now get the others?"
"Others?" A female voice asked and Cayle caught his breath as the footsteps came closer and a man's face appeared at the cell door and then turned to face someone behind him.
The other person approached and everyone's, except Alroys, jaws dropped. The woman who appeared at the cell door was the person they had spent months searching for.
The woman was Deanna.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Chapter 24

Deanna was still frozen to the spot, and the conversation became a blur. How had he found her?
That was the question that her mind kept repeating, over and over again.
The conversation continued in the other room, and, once she had her wits about her again, she assumed he had passed sentence and put them in the dungeon.
She turned and went back to her room, the reason she had come was completely forgotten. She walked with determination she had to find a way to get to the dungeon.
                                                                      * * *
Cadman was letting loose a string of curses as he tried to break the bars of their cell.
"Cadman, just let it lie." Alroy said calmly from where he sat on the tattered bed, his head resting on the wall; his eyes were closed.
"How can I let it lie?" Cadman demanded. "We're stuck here until that ass upstairs decides 'what punishment is most suitable for trespassing,'" He mocked the kings voice. It was a very poor impersonation.
"You're not going to help anything if you get us killed by the guards." Alroy responded. He seemed almost abnormally calm.
"Why are you so calm, Alroy?" Finn asked from where he was sitting in the corner, watching the room warily.
"This so called 'king' is no such thing, he's a Baron that got dishonored and so he went to an out of the way forest, built himself a castle and called himself a king. He's a worthless little brat who threw a temper-tantrum simply because his daddy wouldn't die."
They all looked at him, surprised at the hate in his voice. He opened his eyes to look at them.
                                                                       * * *
Deanna was sitting on the bed again, trying to come up with a plan to get to the dungeon, since she figured they wouldn't let her just walk in, would they?
There was a knock at the door and Deanna stood to open it.
"The king requests your presence." The guard said, his face stern and he looked like he didn't have any laugh lines at all.
"Lead the way." Deanna said as she closed the door behind her.
The guard lead her back to the throne room, where the king still sat upon the throne.
He smiled when he saw her.
"Hello," He greeted. "I hope you found your rooms comfortable."
"Indeed," She said, wondering when he'd get to the point; she didn't think he'd called her out here to discuss her sleeping arrangements.
"It has occurred to me, though I fear I have addressed the matter too late, that you have not yet had a tour of my palace."
She blinked in surprise. Well, she thought, this is lucky.
The king had called over a young maid, who kept her eyes averted. "Alissa, could you give Miss..." He paused. "Oh dear, we've spent a few days together and I don't even know your name."
He had an apologetic light in his eyes.
"It's alright, I'm afraid we're even in that respect," Deanna said. "My name is Deanna."
He smiled. "My name is King Devron." He turned back to the maid. "Please show Lady Deanna around the palace."
The maid bowed and walked towards the door, Deanna followed her.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Chapter 23

The riders were approaching quickly, and, now that they were closer, the group could see that they were soldiers.
"Probably a patrol," Alroy said, sitting in his wagon, arms resting on his legs as he watched them approach.
"You think?" Cadman said, his voice having the slight hint of sarcasm. "I can spot a patrol a mile away without your help."
"Be nice." Cayle said.
"Announce yourselves!" The man leading the riders said, once he was within shouting range.
"We are but a group of travelers, sir, passing through." Cayle shouted back.
There was a sharp bark of laughter. "You take me for a fool? You are no mere travelers!"
"Sir?" Cayle asked.
"Drop any weapons you may have on the road." The man ordered. "And then dismount."
Cayle sighed.
"Now!" The man screamed.
They all unsheathed their weapons and dropped them on the road before dismounting, hands in the air.
"Was that so hard?" The man smirked.
                                                                          * * *
Deanna sat on the cushioned bed, staring in amazement at her surroundings. She was sitting in an elaborately decorated room, with ornate ceramics sitting on oak dressers and tables.
Paintings of landscapes hung on the walls; and the canopied bed was draped with burgundy silk, with matching bed-sheets, and a large quilt lay on the bed, adding more color to the intense room.
She couldn't believe it was hers. It was quite the jump from the prison cell she'd woken up in. She stood and began wandering the room, looking more closely at the furniture and the ceramics. They were all quite valuable.
She paused when she passed a painting of an open landscape with wild horses running free and it made her think of Krennan and how much she missed him. She found herself wondering what had happened.
A sudden thought occurred to her and she ran out of the room, trying to find her way back to the throne room.
She passed a maid with short brown hair that she had pulled back off her face with a bandana and asked for directions. The maid, after a short pause, pointed her in the right direction and soon she was running through the halls once more, trying desperately not to fall flat on her face.
She came to the door from which she had been lead through after it was revealed she wasn't this Marianna everyone kept talking about.
She was about to burst through the door when something made her pause. She could hear voices through the door and her curiosity got the better of her and she put her ear against the door.
"-care!" A man shouted; she recognized it as the voice of the lord of the castle.
"But, my lord," Another man whimpered, the terror clear in his voice. "The girl!"
Deanna wondered what girl they were talking about.
"I don't care what you have to do!" The castle lord said again. "Convince him that she is his daughter!"
"My lord," Another man spoke up, his voice cautious, but not filled with fear, like the others. "If he does not believe we have his daughter, perhaps we should send him proof?"
"But what?!" The lord demanded. "We don't have anything of his daughters' to send him; he wouldn't believe some ribbon or a lock of hair, it would have to be something personal that only she would have or a note with something that only she would know written on it! He's too smart for that!"
There was a pause.
"Perhaps we could ki-" The man began, but was interrupted by a loud banging sound that made Deanna jump.
"My lord! We caught intruders in the land," A new voice said, his voice dripping with glee at his capture. "They claim to be travelers, but how lucky can we get? First the girl, and now them? They're obviously working together!"
More silence.
"Thank you, Captain," The lord said tightly, obviously annoyed at the interruption. "But why don't you leave the allegations to us?"
"What girl?" A voice that sounded familiar asked.
"You dare address the King of the Shore?!" One of the original voices said indignantly.
"King of the what?" The familiar voice asked, slightly amused. "That's the best name you could come up with?"
Then it finally dawned on Deanna who the owner of that voice was. And she stepped away from the door in shock. How had he found her?
The voice belonged to the boy she had encountered in the woods, the one who she's heard singing.