For Caleb and Liam, a pair of close-knit brothers who have trouble fitting in at school, the Southwest desert around their home offers a place where their imaginations can run wild.
But as their explorations take them farther from home, a sinister darkness begins to invade their happy adventures -- a darkness that is far more real than what their imaginations can conjure up. And when they collect souvenirs from an abandoned house that turn out to be powerful talismans connected to a mysterious shadow land, strange events and people begin intruding into their lives. Along the way, the brothers acquire some new friends -- including two ghosts and a reclusive neighbor -- who give them valuable insights into the darkness they are fighting.
Will the evil from the shadow land gain control over Liam and Caleb so that the doorway to Earth remains open? Or will they learn to keep the secrets necessary to survive and become free from the evil that is attempting to absorb them into its dimension?
Great book! September 16, 2016
Great book. The author does an excellent job describing living in a valley in the Sonoran Desert. His descriptions of of the storms were especially realistic. Great characters that are easy to connect with. Excited to read the next book as soon as it is available.
Five Stars August 28, 2016
Really enjoyed it all the times I read it.
I can't wait for the next book to come out and continue the fight between good and evil July 23, 2016
Wow!!! This story is so different from anything out there right now. I couldn't put this book down! Just when I thought the story couldn't get my imagination flowing anymore, it did. It is so descriptive, I have a picture in my head of the land where it could have taken place. I can see Caleb and Liam making there weapons for protection. I can see Dusty wandering through the desert and Jasmine giving them insight to the past. It let my mind escape the everyday world and journey into another.I can't wait for the next book to come out and continue the fight between good and evil!!!! Great reading for preteens and up.
Five stars!!! July 6, 2016
Chilling edge of your seat story with comedy thrown in here and there! What an expertly written book this was. It sucks you in with the first few pages and keeps you interested until the very end. The descriptions are so vivid you can picture seeing everything the characters see like you are actually right in the story with them. I highly recommend this book to anyone who may have a fascination with the unknown. Very much looking forward to the next book in the series!
Keeps you on your toes, cant put it down. June 10, 2016
So I finished this book in less than 2 days. Very well written. This book will have you sucked in the first few moments you start reading it. I loved that I knew some of the landmarks because I grew up with the author. Amazing!!! Can't wait for the next book!!!!
Five Stars May 30, 2016
A well though out mix of history and folklore with a modern day twist.
Five Stars May 3, 2016
Excellently written and left me with chills every time I looked at the desert.
Five Stars April 11, 2016
Excellent book. Thrillingly creepy! Already have my kids reading it!
This is a captivating story right from the start, easy connection ...
This is a captivating story right from the start, easy connection with all the characters even the scary ones, never a dull moment. I read it on the train going to work, went an extra Station just to read a couple more pages, worth the walk back. Do yourself a favour, get a copy! How long until the next one?
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Ellie folded her arms over her chest. She watched Charlie grab a long, fat vial from her med kit. Charlie held it up, turning it this way and that. Staring at the clear, slightly viscose liquid inside, she flicked it. Edward padded into the kitchen on bare feet. His shoulder length, blond hair was stringy. He’d simply pulled it back into a messy ponytail at the nape of his neck. Long wisps of bangs fell loose curving over his square jaw. It had been a few days since he saw a shower. He was dressed in the same gray sweatpants he’d been wearing since the day Ellie and her boys got there last week. The stubble on his chin was getting thick. He sat down on the stool in front of the massive kitchen island and batted exotic blue eyes at her.
Science shouldn’t try to play with magic. That didn’t stop them from trying, though. A ring of violet ringed Edward’s irises. It gradated to a softer shade with spikes of a blue so pale it almost looked white ringing his pupils like the rays of the sun. Ellie missed his human eyes. She missed rather a lot from when her brother was human. Ellie tried flashing him a smile. It was weak. She was more than just a little worried about him. It was like he’d just given up. This wasn’t her Edward.
Charlie drew out thirty lines into the syringe. Edward held his arm out, pumping his fist. Charlie flashed him a small, reassuring smile, and handed him a solid piece of plastic. Edward lifted it to his teeth and bit down on the thing. Charlie slid the needle slowly into the vein at the crux of his arm, pressing the plunger down.
Edward’s jaw tightened. His entire body went rigid with the pain it caused. Like broken glass swimming through his bloodstream, it tore him in half. He shuddered. His screams were wretched. Ellie reached up quickly to wipe at the tear that fell down her cheek. She took in a shuddering breath. Ellie decided in that moment that bitch Bennet's death wasn’t nearly as bloody as it should have been. Charlie pulled the needle free and went about cleaning up the small mess she’d made.
Ellie threw her arms around her big brother from behind. Her hands wrapped around his muscular arms. “I’m sorry, Eddy,” Ellie whispered. “I’m so sorry.”
“For what?” he said through gritted teeth. Edward couldn’t stop the shudders, couldn’t quiet the agony that roared through him. It took an eternity for the fire to begin to die down. Edward forced himself to relax against her. He concentrated hard on her embrace.
“That you have to go through this.” Ellie touched the side of his face, smoothed the hair back from his sweat-drenched forehead. “That I didn’t get there in time to save you.”
“You came, little Lottey.” Edward breathed in slow, just to blow it free. “I’ve had worse.”
Ellie sniffed and laid a kiss on his bristly cheek. “Liar,” she said with a pouting lip. She worked hard to give him a smile. “I love you, Edward.”
Edward sat up, leaning back far enough to put his arm around his kid sister’s back. He pulled her into his lap without any effort and ruffled her silky hair. “You going to stay a while this time, Squirt?” Ellie had a hard time ignoring the lilt of hope in his voice.
Her eyebrows drew together and her mouth dropped open. Ellie had a lead on another one of Bennet’s crazies. But after watching that, she couldn’t bear to tell him no. “A little while.” Ellie nodded and sniffed.
Charlie zipped her small med-kit closed and slipped it into the cupboard on the end. She walked back to the dining room table. Her fussing caught Ellie’s attention. Charlie closed down a program on her laptop. Ellie stared at the small black rectangle Charlie had jacked into one of the USB ports. The external hard-drive had all of Susan Bennet’s research on it.
“How’s the science going?” The moment the words left her lips, Ellie regretted asking in front of Edward.
Charlie turned to them. Her hazel eyes first met Edward’s pleading gaze, and then bashfully, she looked at Ellie. “I’m doing my best to make something of it.” Charlie hated lying. She’d developed a skill for it married to her EX husband. And she needed every ounce of it to get past the searching stare of Ellie. Charlie didn’t get the need for this secret. But it wasn’t exactly hers to tell.
“That’s all I can ask,” Ellie said with a nod. She wiped at her nose and slipped her arms around her brother’s neck. “Can you make a list of some of the stuff you’ll need?”
Charlie’s mouth dropped open to answer but Edward beat her to it. “What for, Squirt? How exactly do you plan on getting any of it?”
“We’ll steal it,” Ellie answered simply.
Edward frowned. He hated the idea that Ellie happily embraced being an outlaw only a tiny bit more than she did being a murderer. Ellie could tell by the look on his face there was a fight on the horizon. She just couldn’t deal with it. She loved Edward more than life itself. But living with him was proving harder every day. Ellie leaned in and kissed him between the eyes. Cupping his face between her tiny hands, she smirked.
“I’m going to make you better, Edward.”
He let the love shining in her pretty green eyes draw a smile across his mouth. “Never had a doubt in my mind, Squirt.” Edward tried hard to keep his face neutral. His vision blurred with stinging tears.
Ellie took in a deep breath and laid her head against the side of his. Her eyes cast to the floor. She was lost here. Ellie was the first to admit this life took some getting used to. But Edward just couldn’t handle it, and it was getting harder to ignore. Ellie spent her whole life thinking nothing could come between them. Now, she worried she was wrong. The only thought in her head for the longest time was of him. Now that he was free, Ellie just couldn’t shake the feeling he was spinning away from her.
Looking for a good, clean fiction romance book with a fantasy twist? Well you have come to the right place! Call Her Forth is about Trent Mason, a man who went to bed one night and had a dream he couldn't shake -- a dream that changed his life. Join Trent on the cusp of his 28th birthday as he struggles to figure out what he really wants in life. As he searches for direction, Trent meets the girl of his dreams in his dreams, though she comes with some baggage of her own. Can Trent help this dream girl, or will the distractions of real life keep him from dreaming?
Mount Olympus. Long Ago.
The enormous white columns gleamed in the blinding sunlight as the two magnificent women stood face to face. “I cast you out,” Hecate, Goddess of the Witches screamed, her voice bouncing off the grand chamber walls. “Now, and forever more. Be gone from my sight.” “No, Mother, I beg of you.” Her beautiful blonde hair caught in the gentle breeze as she grabbed for her mother’s hand. Hecate moved her hand and looked down in disgust as Empusa dropped to her knees, tears staining her cheeks, and pulled at her white flowing diaphanous dress. “You are no daughter of mine. I curse you until the end of time.” Empusa sobbed, but it fell on deaf ears. Her mother was wicked and cruel and not even the mighty Zeus could sway her decision once made. Hecate raised her hand slowly. “Your form will match your true nature.”
Empusa rose into the air, screaming in agony, her hair aflame. The once beautiful blonde locks fell onto the ground, dissolving into a pile of ash. In its place, a mane of red flaming hair grew. She cried out, the flames burning her scalp.
A feud, which has been unsettled for centuries…
A vampire leader, determined to sacrifice his army…
A werewolf clan, ready to invade its greatest enemy…
A town on the verge of destruction, its secrets buried in a Native American legend…
This is Apollo’s story
In a hurry to leave the forest of Stockwood, Washington, and the feud between his vampire family and his werewolf bloodline, Apollo and Sophie flee to a neighboring town in order to seek a “normal” life together.
Protecting Sophie is the only thing on Apollo’s mind—until he finds himself in the middle of a town with a deadly secret—a secret which includes everyone he loves.
Now caught between his duties to protect the vampire family that raised him, share his life with the woman he loves and unravel the town’s secrets, which could destroy everyone, Apollo makes a choice. Determined to do the right thing, Apollo’s world is torn apart, causing him to unleash his rage on everything in his path.
Aria Vanir, psychic tween girl from Virginia Beach, trusts only her mother with the knowledge of her predictions and remote viewings. When Aria connects with technically and spiritually advanced aliens—the Gallions—she instead confides in her best friend, Tommy Manger. His unexpected anger and betrayal threatens to end their friendship.
Nashata, Queen Supreme of the Gallions, leads a diplomatic mission with her royal family to Earth so she can test Aria for potential first contact. The queen trusts only this “youngirl” with the secrets of her people.
When the Gallions beam Aria, Tommy, and Aria’s tomboyish teen sister, Jackie, aboard their spaceship, Aria’s typically passive mother makes a daring move to save her daughters. None of them realize that the military has sent Aria’s Navy SEAL father, William, on a mission to capture the good aliens or destroy their spaceship. Worse, William has no idea that he’s putting his daughters and their friend in harm’s way.
Can Aria succeed in her quest to meet the alien queen in person, despite the fears and disbeliefs of those closest to her?
Charlotte brushed her shoulder-length, golden blonde hair away from her face, tucking it behind her ear while the sea breeze tried to blow it back. Her heart leapt at the sight of a ship out at sea as it rolled in the swell of the rising tide. Could it be a pirate ship? Why hadn’t she been more vigilant? If they came ashore there would be little chance of escape.
She spotted a smaller boat rowing towards her, heading straight for the beach. Her breath caught in her throat. What should I do? Is there enough time to save my little sister? Beth looked oblivious to the danger, chasing after a feather that blew away in the wind. By the time she reached her sister, they would be in clear view. Maybe I should save myself. At least one of us might survive. No. She couldn’t possibly leave Beth to the mercy of those murderous pirates.
Time ran out. It was now or never. The boat reached the shore, and its dubious occupants began to clamber out.
The loud cry made her jump. She snapped back to reality and spun around.
“Are you daydreaming again?” Her mum let out a frustrated sigh. She placed a gentle hand on her shoulder and steered her in the direction of the car park at the edge of the beach. “Can you help take some of this stuff back to the car, please?” She handed her an armful of bags stuffed with damp, sandy towels. “We’ve still got a lot of things to do before we go home tomorrow, and you haven’t even bought anything for your friends yet. If you get your skates on, you’ll have enough time to pop into the shops across the road.”
Charlotte wrinkled her nose at the thought of their holiday coming to an end, and cringed at the prospect of going back to school the following week. She scooped up her own towel and trudged through the sand, mumbling how unfair it was making her do all the work even though she was only ten. “I notice Beth’s not helping.”
Her dad grinned as she struggled to the car. “We’re going to grab some food. Take-away, nothing but the best for the last day,” he said as she reached him.
“Not McDonald’s again, Dad,” she remarked with a hint of sarcasm, dumping her load on the floor.
“No way! Fish and chips tonight.” He wore his silly grin that never failed to make her smile.
“Whatever!” She smirked. “Mum said I could have a quick look at the gift shops just across the road.”
He put the discarded bags into the car and slammed the boot. He slid his sunglasses up to his receding hairline, slipping his hand into his jeans pocket. “Do you need any money?”
“Nah, it’s okay. Mum gave me some yesterday.”
“Are you going to take Beth with you?”
She folded her arms and shifted her weight to one leg. “Do I have to?” She loved her six-year-old sister to bits, but she was the most annoying person in the whole world. “I’m not going to get much shopping done with Beth tagging along.”
His face brightened with a grin. “I’m only pulling your leg.” He nudged her playfully. “We’ll take Beth with us and meet you back here in ...” He paused to gaze at his watch. “Let’s say, in about fifteen minutes, okay? Don’t go far!”
She sighed with relief. “Okay. See ya later.” She left, fumbling through her pockets to check she still had her money.
Crossing the road, Charlotte admired the pretty seaside town lined with buildings all the way to the top of a hill, overlooking the sea. Interesting old houses displayed colourful shop fronts, and a local market filled any spaces in between. She ambled along the well-worn paving stones, not really paying attention to the task of buying gifts for her friends. With her hands in her pockets, she wandered past stalls that spilled out across the path, packed with beach balls and buckets and spades.
She paused for a moment outside an arcade, drawn by the sounds and flashing lights that filled the air around the neon-lit building. Fighting the urge to spend the last of her money on a teddy-grabbing machine, she continued to trudge up the hill, losing interest in her mission with every step.
Halfway along the road she stopped, stepping into an alley to shelter from the glare of the sun. She leaned her back against the bright-red tiles that decorated the archway. Each one contained a small figure. They reminded her of characters from a fairy tale. She turned to examine them closely, running her fingers over the textured surface. Something about them held a strange attraction.
She gazed into the alley. It led a fair way back, but in the gloom she could see the front of a grubby-looking shop with a large ‘Sale’ sign in the window. She strained her eyes for a better view, and wondered if she should have a look just in case she could pick up something unusual for Mum. After a moment’s thought, she decided she had nothing to lose and wandered a little closer, checking over her shoulder as she went.
Reaching the glazed shop front, Charlotte stood on tiptoes to see over the half-frosted glass that obscured her view of the inside. Despite being taller than most kids her age, the contents of the store remained a mystery. She paused at the door before giving it a shove and peering through the gap. Inside, it looked much smaller than expected, with tall shelves standing against the outer walls, each laden with an assortment of objects that appeared better placed in a junk shop.
The hairs on the back of her neck stood on end, but curiosity urged her forward. She stepped inside. An old-fashioned till perched in the centre of a small counter at the far end of the shop. Behind it hung a set of drab curtains with tiny pinholes, allowing slivers of light to seep through. The whole place had an air of gloom and smelt musty and damp.
“Hello. Are you open?” Charlotte called out.
When no one responded, she browsed the shelves, discovering some odd, hand-carved figures, similar to the characters on the decorated tiles around the archway outside. She picked up one that resembled a garden gnome and turned the carving around, searching for a price label. Nothing. That’s not much help. She placed the grotesque figure back down.
A bright flash caught her eye when she turned to leave. She stared at a small bookcase resting against the back wall beside the counter. A gentle glow of green light illuminated the shelves, tempting her to venture further and take a closer look. She crept through the aisle and bent down to examine a small, glass snow dome nestled amongst a variety of clay pots. It looked out of place with the other articles displayed in the shop.
She reached out and touched the surface with the tips of her fingers. The cool surface tingled, a strange yet alluring sensation. With a quick check over her shoulder, she picked it up and tipped it upside down. She cupped the delicate item in the palm of her hand and held it close to her face. No snow.
Inside the crystal orb, a tiny globe like a miniature planet revolved in slow motion, casting eerie shadows against the dreary walls. “It’s beautiful,” she whispered.
“Yes, it is beautiful,” a gruff voice sounded.
She spun around and stumbled back a step. Behind the counter stood a large figure wrapped in a gray cloak, similar to the drab curtains that hung behind him. From what she could see of him in the gloom, his scruffy, charcoal hair hung down to his shoulders. Dark eyes peered out below bushy eyebrows, making his thin face look gaunt and pasty. She shuddered. He gave her the creeps, popping up from out of nowhere and staring at her as though he had never seen a customer before.
“I am sorry if I surprised you. I did not mean to make you feel uncomfortable,” he said, as if reading her mind. “You are very welcome here.”
She put down the small ornament and walked along scanning the contents of the shelves, picking through the strange collection of knickknacks. The entire time, she sensed the old man’s stare following her. She considered leaving, yet the eerie glow from the snow dome kept drawing her gaze back to the bookcase. The temptation from its hypnotic light got the better of her, and she walked back to pick it up again. “How much is this?”
A broad smile lit up the man’s face. “Take it, child. I have no use for it in my shop.”
Her eyes widened. “What, for nothing? I must give you something for it. I’ve got money, you know.”
The old man shrugged. “Well, if you are that keen on striking a deal with me.” He raised one of his bushy eyebrows. “All I will ask is for you to take great care of such a beautiful item. Promise me you will be good and always tell the truth.”
“I always tell the truth anyway. I hate liars!” she declared, a little puzzled by such a strange request. “Is that it? Is that all you want?”
He bellowed with laughter.
She placed one hand on her hip. “What’s so funny, then?”
“I am sorry.” He leaned closer across the counter. His weather-beaten face creased with concern. “Telling the truth is not always an easy thing to do, especially when you find yourself in trouble.” His expression lightened. “I am Goffer, the shop keeper, and if I am not mistaken, you will find yourself in trouble if you do not hurry. Time is getting on.”
Charlotte glanced at her watch. “You’re right!” She rushed to the door in a fluster, but stopped before leaving. “Thank you! Thanks a lot. That was really nice of you.”
Goffer stood motionless, barely visible in the shadows. “I would not be so quick to thank me just yet.”
A faithful Knight feels trapped by his duties to his king when his world is turned upside down by the meeting of a strange woman in the woods. This woman turns out to be a vampire who they are swore to kill on sight. When she tells him a secret that is unknown even to him. Find out if he is able to protect his king or if the secret he has learned will change the way he feels about his kingdom.
If you could describe Uri’s home with a few words, it’d be sterile, bare and spartan. Almost militant. It reminded Del of the early days, back when he’d steal glass from the barracks and keeps of human kingdoms before the Glass Wars diminished their numbers and put the faen into power.
Nothing was out of place here. His clothes were organized into two sections: patrol Uri and magistrate Uri. Light armour and leather on the left and garish robes and ceremonial trinkets on the right. No Glass Crown.
A mouse would be hard-pressed to find a crumb of food in the kitchen. The floors were scrubbed, the table clean and polished, and the scent of citrus lingered in the air. No Glass Crown.
Upstairs was, as expected, equally tidy. Saria’s bedroom would seem chaotic compared to the order of Uri’s, and all she had was a bed and a book of poems. The sheets were pressed and fitted tight around a bed that’d hold no more than a single person. If Uri had anything going on with Renny, it sure as hell wasn’t going on here. Perhaps they rolled around on the floured floor of her bakery. An image both amusing and disturbing. No Glass Crown.
Del returned to the kitchen and grabbed a glass along with the bottle of wine beside it. He pulled the cork out with his teeth, spit it onto the floor and filled the glass, putting his feet up on the table. A small consolation for a fruitless search, but a deserved one nonetheless. He had after all saved Uri’s life.
I screeched at him furiously. Had I been sober, I may have chosen discretion. However, rage mixed with ethanol coursed through my young veins. “You! I have a bone to pick with you!” I shouted at him. He looked up in shock and surprise. He said “As clearly stipulated in terms and conditions of sale, there are no refunds.” I stalked up to him, as he turned at a slight angle towards me. I could see his hand dipping down into his pocket. I felt sure he had a magic wand but my rash, young, alcohol-addled mind didn’t care. I said “You ruined my life!” He pouted at me curiously. I had already drawn quite a crowd with my story and they largely stayed to watch it out to its end.
He asked “Do I know you?” I stamped my foot and shouted “Yes, we met in the Betwixt where you told me to abandon my friend and chase after a boy.” A look of recognition came across Mythrysia’s face and he said “Ah, yes, the little girl who likes to leave her backpack lying around between dimensions as a tripping hazard. Jane, I believe was your name.” I growled back “My name is Julie!” Vilga spoke up saying “of Ohio.” Mythrysia nodded and said “Yes, quite, the girl who wanted to dance with JTT yet had to face a blonde-haired buxom dragon in order to get him. Are you angry at me that the Stacey-dragon struck you? I scarcely imagine that came as a surprise.”
My face flushed and I said “After one, terrible, dance, Stacey got Jeremy and now the whole school says I’m a climber, using other girls to get boys out of my league. My life is ruined!” Mythrysia’s eyes narrowed and he replied “Is it now? How is your breath? Are your lungs still working?” I squinted at him angrily not wanting to answer. He continued “And about your heart, I trust it is still beating? With all that anger I feel confident in assessing that your mind is quite a flutter with electrical impulses.” I snorted angrily and replied “So?” He said “Then your life is not over and therefore cannot be ruined. For anyone whose heart is still beating and whose mind is still pulsing may still have hope. No matter how terrible their fate may seem, as long as these functions work there is always some hope. So, in this manner, I can safely assume that your life is not yet completely ruined.”
It’s strange how powerful that phrase feels to me now, after all I have been through. But such was not the case back then. I was a teenager and I thought I knew everything. Also, I was drunk.
To my brash young mind, I felt I needed more than some cheap words. I said “But my reputation is ruined, my best girlfriend hates me, and I’ve lost the boy of my dreams!” Mythrysia’s eyes twinkled and a smile played upon his lips. He replied, loudly for all to hear, “Reputation, a so-called friend, and some teenage boy? You are angry at the loss of these things? I dare say you lost nothing for what you received in return.” He pulled out his hand from his pocket. I braced myself for whatever hell he could conjure from his wand. Instead he withdrew his empty hand and pointed at me saying “I can see it in your eyes, Julie of Ohio, that you have fought with a dragon.” The man with the pet dragon riding on his shoulder shot Mythrysia an insulted look as his dragon whimpered piteously. Mythrysia replied to the man and his pet saying “Oh, Horace, it’s just an expression and you know it.”
He continued, loudly for all to hear, “When I met Julie of Ohio she was nothing more than a whimpering little girl crying to herself in the dark. Now look at her. I bet if we fed her coal diamonds would plop out from the fire which broils through her veins. I’ve seen men of less ferocity on the field of battle than this young Julie.” I replied bitterly “But, I lost everything.” Mythrysia spoke to me softly saying “Julie, in ten years-time this boy of yours will have met his wife-to-be in the cubicle next to his at a job in another country. Your so-called friend will be attending college in another state and you won’t ever speak to her again. No one from your school will even remember your name, much less the gossip that fluttered about you in junior high.” He stepped in close and put his finger square on my chest saying “But you, you will remember that you stood up to your dragon and you fought it. It doesn’t matter how the fight ended. What matters is that you had the courage to fight at all. That, Julie of Ohio, is why I advised you to say ‘yes’ to the boy. Not because your dance with him would mean anything. But, because the courage you found to do so will serve you well for the rest of your life.”
I pushed his finger away and said “But…”
My mind could conjure no retort.
A small tear started to come down my cheek. In my mind, I knew he was right. Really, none of it mattered. Nothing that happens in junior high matters. But my heart couldn’t accept it. I said “Tonight was supposed to be magical and romantic. Not the worst night of my life.” Mythrysia took a step back and spoke up “Ahhh, yes, there you have me.” He raised his hands to the crowd and said “Indeed, I have not ruined her life. However, my brash advice, has ruined something for which I intend to make amends.” He gestured towards me and said “For I have ruined her dance. I have ruined her evening. For this, I shall make amends. For we shall host, this very night, a do-over dance for young Julie of Ohio.”
He shuffled in his pocket and started to draw forth some coins. He spoke first to Jessica Thoroughgoblin “Madame Jessica, perchance you know any songs which would be popular for a Junior High dance in Ohio?” Jessica shrugged and said “I don’t know. I’ve never been to Ohio.” Mythrysia replied “ah, yes, and you should never go there for obvious reasons. Earth’s much too dangerous, what with the landmines and such though I can’t quite recall if they are more common in Ohio or the Congo... Hold on, for I might have something for you.” Mythrysia shuffled around in his backpack and pulled up some sheet music “Here’s a bit I picked up on my last trip. A few pieces from this quaint little group named Boyz II Men. Quite popular on Earth these days.”
Jessica scoffed and replied “Dumb name, but I guess we can make this work.” Mythrysia gave her some coins and she reviewed the sheet music with her magician-musician. Beth piped up “What do they drink at a junior-high dance in Ohio?” Mythrysia nodded and said “Punch, indeed. Make up a bowl full and scoop some out for our dancers with a ladle into small, clear glasses. On earth they use glasses constructed of polyethylene.” Beth asked “Of polyethylene? But that is so expensive,” Mythrysia waved a hand and said “You can just use the cheap quartz crystal-wear for it instead.” Beth asked me “How many bottles of tequila do they normally put in the punch in Ohio?” I blanched, and she looked at me queerly for a second. She corrected herself saying “Oh, yes, Earth’s too dangerous of a place to get drunk.” She patted me gently on the shoulder and said “Don’t worry, Julie of Ohio, I’ll only put in three bottles of Tequila for the punch-bowl.”
A few coins from Mythrysia later and Beth set about this task. Mythrysia announced loudly “Let’s make a dance.” The other bar denizens, of their own accord, began shoo-ing the tables away from the dance floor to make more room. As they flapped and clapped at the tables, the tables walked away on their tentacles. Mythrysia directed them “For a proper junior high dance, we must have all the men on one side and all the women on the other.” Vilga asked “What do we do then?” Mythrysia responded “The separate genders eye each other awkwardly for two hours while you drink punch and nervously talk with your same gender.” Vilga continued “But, when do we dance with the women?” Mythrysia responded “You don’t, or if you do it is rarely and only the brave…” He paused and looked at me. He smiled and said “Only the brave cross to the middle and dance.”
Mythrysia pulled out his magic wand and pointed it at the ceiling. With the speaking of a magical incantation, the house-lights went down, and a disco-ball descended and begun twirling casting sprinkling lights about the room. Either out of good-sportsmanship, or just for the fun of it, the bar denizens followed Mythrysia’s advice and soon the room looked slightly nothing at all like a conventional Junior high dance.
Yes, I know they were trying their best, but I have never been to a junior high dance where some of the attendees had three-inch canines jutting out from their lower jaws, others had purple skin and still others had four hooves instead of legs. I looked down and another detail stuck out at me sadly.
I still wore a nightgown.
Regardless how concealing it may have been, it scarcely passed for fancy clothing.
Mythrysia chuckled at me as I looked up at him piteously “My dear, it seems you have nothing to wear to the ball.” He said. I replied “It’s not funny and this isn’t a real junior high dance. I don’t care how much you…” Before I could finish the sentence, he pointed his magic wand at me and spoke an incantation. I gasped and held out my hands defensively, but it was too late. A magic bolt struck me square in the chest and a flash of heat passed around my body followed by a deathly chill. I couldn’t imagine that after all of this, he decided to kill me in the end.
My heart beat on, though.
I looked down and my nightgown had transformed into a ballgown.
He chuckled and said “Bippity-boppity-boo.” I reviewed the dress, half expecting it to be fifteen layers of satin petticoats each one more delicate than the last, but such was not the case.
Mythrysia was well versed in the fashion of the 90’s.
I wore a neon-blue polyester affair with sewn-on sequins decorating the abdominal section. The sweet-heart cut bust-line ended on the sides with high shoulder-pads that stuck out in slight angles. The dress itself was sleeveless, but my left arm was partially covered by an over-sized polyester flower stitched across my chest. The dress terminated below the sequin paneling and boasted an over-stuffed mermaid’s tale that cut off just below my knees.
“And what is a girl without good hair?” Mythrysia asked. He raised his wand again and I said “Whoa, whoa, don’t….”
My hair felt briefly hot and then cold again. Mythrysia gestured for me to follow him to a side corner next to the bar where a full-length mirror stood. Here, I saw my hair for the first time
My banes exploded straight up into a teased-out bouffant that rose several inches over my actual scalp. The rest of my hair sprung into tight curls which scattered in all directions away from my head as if they had a mind of their own. Whatever magic Mythrysia used on my hair clearly had dialed the volume up to eleven.
Looking back on it now, it makes laugh. That hideous dress and my hair couldn’t have been more garishly dated if Mythrysia had tried. It looked like the culmination of every cheap prom-gown and bridesmaid’s-enforced-wardrobe crammed together into one unruly pile of fabric. If it had not been magical I would have half-expected to see a ‘Made in China’ tag in the back next to a resume for the designer since he would be looking for a new job upon creating such a monstrosity. My hair appeared as though it had been teased to the brink of death. At the time, however, I loved it. It was cool. It was hip. It was…
…everything that I wasn’t.
The Last Flight of the Phoenix is the sequel to the Novel - The Warrior's Stone. In the first book the T.S.S. Phoenix is lost behind enemy lines. In this new novel we discover what became ofthe Phoenix and its crew, while Roy and Katreena face a new evil that threatens their world.
The war was over except for the crew of the T.S.S. Phoenix. Lost deep in enemy space, crippled, but not dead. The odds of survival were stacked against them, but they were still determined to fight their way back towards allied space.
On New Terra, Roy O’Hara had discovered peace for his spirit and joy in a simple life. Yet he had only fulfilled a portion of the Commander’s Prophecy. It told of a darkness that would fall on his new home from the stars and he would be called upon once again to save them all.
The Alliance turned a blind eye to the sudden growth of the Sa’larie Empire just beyond their borders, but some in the intelligent community could see the clues of a new threat. A covert team is sent to discover the truth of the alien’s goals and they discover much more than they could have ever imagined.
Different paths of unlikely allies and new foes will intersect in the skies and on the ground of New Terra once again, where everything will change and destinies will collide.
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Château de Josselin In Part One we followed Jasper and Henry Tudor’s escape from West Wales to Brittany. Now we follow events up to their