Chapter Twenty-five

"Where am I again, and why is everyone's eyes glowing?" asked the girl.

"You are in Foltor, hasn't anyone told you this?  And our eyes are glowing because we are the Those of Light," said Hardwin.

"No, no one has told me because i was walking to school when suddenly one of you people beckoned me into an alley, where he pushed me into a portal and now I'm here, but no one's hurt me or anything, so I think its okay," the girl replied.

"Why would you follow someone into an alley?" asked Korbin.

"I don't know actually," said the girl looking as if she had confused herself, "I just remember thinking he looked like someone to follow."

"We can be very intriguing, its one of our powers," said Hardwin.  "Luring people in would be easy."

"Well whats your name?" asked Steven. 

"I'm Ariel," she said.

"Well hello Ariel," said Hardwin, shaking her hand.  Steven and Korbin did the same.  "Has anyone explained to you why you are here, or what is going on?" Hardwin asked.

"No, I'm terribly confused actually, but I'm just sort of going with it," Ariel replied.

"Well, we were just about to go have lunch, so why don't you join us and we'll tell you everything while we eat."  The four of them went to the dining hall of the Army Center.

"What are we supposed to eat?" asked Korbin, looking suspiciously at the thick  soup that seemed to be liquid gold Hardwin was putting generous amounts of into a bowl.

"Whats wrong with this food?" asked Hardwin, placing a few pieces of some sort of glowing fruit that looked rather similar to cut up watermelon, except this was yellow and glowing, with small silver seeds.

"We don't generally eat liquefied minerals," said Steven, pointing to the golden soup.

"That's not gold," said Hardwin, "Its liquid light, everything here is light in some form, its all we really eat, we are Those of Light after all."  After the continuing encouragement, Steven, Korbin, and Ariel agreed to try some of the soup.  It proved to be sweet, and caused the stomach to become pleasantly warm.  They tried the other foods, each with different flavors, but each causing the same warm feeling.

"They will give you lots of energy as well," explained Hardwin as they were eating, "Light is very healthy and very energizing!  Well Ariel, we better explain to you what is going on."  Hardwin explained the history of Foltor, and about the Protectors, and the recent events.  

"So when will I find out my Strength?" asked Ariel, "But first, how did you know I was a Protector?" 

"Oh we have Those of Light everywhere looking to find the Protectors, for example, Steven, your receptionist, Christabelle, she's a Those of Light."

"But her eyes don't glow!" said Ste?ven.

"We've developed special contacts to make the glow invisible," said Hardwin.  Steven looked as much shocked as annoyed that a Those of Light had been at his office for the past two years and he hadn't even known.

"But how can you tell that we're a Protector?" asked Korbin.

"There's a number of things that can give it away, one of the most obvious is found in your blood, that's why we have tried to place a Those of Light in most hospitals in order to examine the blood samples to find the Protectors.  We know we have found at five, you three and two more, and the other two should be arriving shortly," explained Hardwin

"What about the last two of them?" Steven asked.

"The search has been put into much faster action, and one of them may be a small child, because when a Protector dies, another one is born."

"Well, when am I going to find my Strength?" asked Ariel.

"Hopefully right now!" said Hardwin, "We should get back to the training center, we've been here much to long."  

They made their way back to the training center, and Ariel tried all of the skills, except for knife and spear throwing.  She was pretty much awful at all of them except for sword fighting.

"Congratulations Ariel," said Hardwin, "You are Protector Number One, the foretold leader of the Protectors."

The End

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