v Spatial Tower
“She took the Rider’s pen?!” exclaimed Genesis.
“I don’t even know how she got it!” yelled Cypher angrily.
“I do,” Murtaugh stepped forward.
So do I, said Rio.
“Care to explain?” asked Ceres.
“Seniphos put a curse on—”
The Seer so that she—
“Would be tempted to take the pen!” finished Murtaugh.
They talked and discussed how they would get to Spatial Tower and find the pen. Ceres decided that Phoebe was more important than the pen, and they agreed.
“Again, I’m really sorry about sending her there I just, can’t do the spell to bring her back. It isn’t working because of the stupid boundaries,” clarified Murtaugh. “I… I—”
“We understand bro! Don’t worry about it. We’ll figure out a way, we always will,” encouraged Jason optimistically.
It was pushing ten o’ clock and everyone was ready. Cypher was reading the spell book, Murtaugh was sword practicing and Jason was channeling lightning charges into his spear. Ceres was holding the stone tablet. “Hey guys, come look at this!”
Jason, Cypher and Murtaugh walked over to Ceres and read the stone tablet. It read:
The powerful being of Thunder waits,
In the Lightning Field for you to ace,
Its difficult test without a sever,
If not the pen is lost forever.
But you mustn’t leave dear Phoebe, my friend,
Or she’ll be cursed to endure till the end,
When the torture is finished she will then leap,
Off of Spatial Tower without a peep.
“Guys! How are we going to do this?! We don’t even have a map to get anywhere!” exclaimed Jason.
“I… I have a map for you,” said Genesis. She handed Cypher a sheet of paper.
“We should cut through Discord Desert. We could also rest in Gale if we have to!” yelled Cypher excitedly.
“Why not just use Magick to poof her over here?” asked Ceres.
“Because the Ail Wall in front of Spatial Tower prevents the use of teleportation or communicating telepathically,” explained Murtaugh.
“Then, we could go around to Lightning Field and face this ‘Being of Thunder’! It’ll be a piece of cake!” said Jason while making lightning sparks with his fingertips. He blew them out and smiled enthusiastically.
“No we have to get Phoebe first. That’s what the… prophecy said,” explained Murtaugh.
After packing everything for the long trip ahead of them, Rio, Delphin, Ceres, Murtaugh, Jason and Cypher turned to face the west. Genesis said that she couldn’t come but stuck her hands out.
“Animos proias iet!” chanted Genesis.
Blue glimmers swirled around everyone—even the dragons. Bouncing and spinning, the sparks jumped into each and every one of them.
“What did you do?” asked Ceres.
“The animals will now protect you—only the animals, not Seniphos’s creatures,” said Genesis.
And with that final note, they were off. Cool wind brushed against them in the damp night as they headed on, further and further away from Daron Spring, closer and closer to their challenge. They walked for an hour, always on the ready for a sudden attack, but it never came. They might hear a twig snap, but it would only be a squirrel. Nobody spoke at all; they all just soaked in the deep silence to gather their thoughts and to get things straight. Then, it appeared. A 38` foot tall wall. Inscribed in that, it said Ail Wall. The wall stretched on for miles and miles to both the south, and the north. It was the biggest thing they’d ever seen. But how to get over the wall stayed an enigmatic speck, cloaked in several shadows of narrow-mindedness, an impossible code to crack. A shower of rage poured down over Murtaugh as he attempted to slip by the inscrutable guard of the wall with his consciousness. There was no promising method that would lead to the triumph of them getting to the other side of Ail Wall. The problem stayed an awkward silence over the group until it was broken.
“I got it!” exclaimed Ceres. “Let the dragons fly us over it!”
We aren’t able to carry any of you here, said Delphin.
“Why not?” asked Cypher.
The Ail Wall puts a field of strengthened gravity around us. It makes us unable to fly, said Rio.
“Well, I could put a no-gravity spell on us!” shouted Cypher.
Gravity spells are prevented as well, said Delphin.
“We’ll have to continue going toward Discord Desert this time,” said Ceres holding the map.
“Great! More walking to do!” exclaimed Jason.
Jason leaned against the wall. Ripples waved outward from where his arm rested. And then, the strangest thing happened… his arm disappeared. He took notice of his ‘invisible’ arm and yelped. He jumped back, startled by the sudden transition. He tapped his finger against the wall and the same thing happened. He exchanged looks with Cypher.
“Sistus ávìus!” yelled Cypher.
Wind brewed up and then stopped. An invisible force emanating from Cypher’s palms flowed toward Jason. The force was so powerful, it knocked Jason backwards…into the wall. He disappeared from sight. His voice rang out from the other side of the barricade. “Ow! Uh… guys, are you coming? Guys!”
“Yes we’re coming! Don’t have a fit!” Cypher howled.
He walked to the Ail Wall and smiled. He touched his hand to the stone wall. It was cold as ice. But that sensation was soon replaced by another. But this one was different. A mixture of excitement and fear was swirling in his body, touching every corner. He retracted his hand from the mirage. This time, he settled on the spot for a while. Finally, he jumped through the wall, heart thumping. He joined Jason on the other side of the wall. To the north: a forest. To the south: a desert. He turned, facing Spatial Tower. It was smaller than Ail Wall, yet bigger than 6 grown elephants. It was a tall, black tower painted with long, oddly shaped, purple lines along the side. It was a finely structured tower, complexly and beautifully built. An aura of power emanated from the tower, overpowering Cypher. Past the tower, a blue sea sparkled in the night, stretching endlessly. Jason stepped beside him, followed by Rio, Delphin, Ceres and Murtaugh. Together, they all slipped through the large entrance. It fit all of them in there at one time. On the floor, there was a complex drawing, a circle with intricate lines and shapes dotting the inside. It had odd words that no one could make out. Complex figures like ¥ and § were engraved in the figure. A triangle was centered in the middle of the circle. Ceres took out a pad of paper.
“I have to draw this,” she said.
“Why?” asked Cypher.
“Because it’s such an intricate design, I—it might come in handy,” answered Ceres.
“What could the mural mean?” asked Cypher.
“I don’t know, but we better go: Phoebe probably doesn’t want to leap off this tower,” said Murtaugh urgently.
They looked to their right, and saw a flight of stairs. As Ceres stepped forward, Cypher pulled her back. He held her back and listened intently. He knew something was done to the room.
“What’s wrong?” asked Ceres.
“Murtaugh,” Cypher said, ignoring Ceres, “do you feel that?”
“Yes, I do. Something is wrong,” he said.
“The work of a Spellweaver is in the air,” explained Cypher.
“A what?!” asked Jason, confused.
“That’s what I thought before. This spell book also has a guide to creatures and magicians in Gaelea,” answered Cypher. “A Spellweaver is different from a Sorcerer or a Wizard. They can be animals as well. They also have the ability to steal other creature’s powers.”
“Oh, well that isn’t good,” said Ceres.
Maybe Cypher and Murtaugh could scan, just to make sure, suggested Rio.
“But I don’t know Gaelean!” said Murtaugh.
“Repeat after me, ‘Revius speïore spex!’” said Cypher. Murtaugh repeated simply.
“Revius speïore spex!” yelled Cypher and Murtaugh in unison.
A wave of energy washed over the room. Faint white swirls appeared and twirled in the air. Whistling moved through the silent room air and revealed a surprise. There was a trap that had been set by a Spellweaver on the stairs. There was a giant hole in one of the stairs.
“Good that we did that isn’t it?” said Murtaugh.
They all went to the stairs and begun their climb. When they reached the broken stair, they all stepped over. When they reached the top of the stairs from after what felt like half an hour, Cypher led everyone into another large room. This one was circular with the same design on the floor.
“I feel another vibe,” said Cypher.
“Want to do the spell again?” asked Murtaugh.
“No need, it’s already happening! Hide behind that!” Cypher exclaimed. He pointed to a wall that divided the room into two parts. They all scurried over, Delphin and Rio flying low to follow them. At the other side of the wall, they could see through to where they were before. They observed a large wolfhound saunter into the room. The wolf looked around the room, sniffing the air. But this was no ordinary wolf. It seemed softer than other wolves. It had fiery red eyes and dark black fur. Its ruby coloured ears twitched and shook. Its paws and part of its tail were crimson. It had odd shapes on its body: on its forehead; ◊, and on each of its paws; three Ω was making a triangle with dots in the center. It isn’t soft, no it it’s dangerous, thought Cypher. But the minute it walked into the room, Cypher had an immediate bond with it. He began to walk away from his friends.
“What are you doing!” murmured Jason.
“Shhhh!” whispered Cypher. He flicked his finger out at Jason. Just as he opened his mouth, a crescent shaped luminosity sprung from Cypher outstretched finger, silencing Jason, rendering him incapable of speech. Cypher moved into the open, where the wolf could see him. The wolf’s scarlet eyes flickered as it watched Cypher. It took a step forward, as did Cypher. Cypher was advancing when the wolf growled. Cypher stepped back.
“You’re gonna get yourself killed!” whispered Murtaugh.
Cypher twirled his staff in his right hand, his palms sweating. The wolf growled again. Cypher placed the staff on the ground and raised his hands. The creature ambled toward him. It began sniffing him immediately. Cypher finally took into mind its height. It was about half his height, more or less.
“Hi, I’m Cypher,” he said. “What are you?”
A Bloodwolf, a voice said in his head. It was a deep, rumbling voice. Cypher realized it was the creature below him that had said that.
“You sound hungry,” answered Cypher. (At this point the others assumed he was crazy)
That I am! Wait…I can sense others here, the Bloodwolf said. It stepped back.
The Bloodwolf strolled over to the wall. He touched his nose to the it and muttered something. The wall shook. Wrinkles formed in the wall as the Bloodwolf backed away. The wrinkles undulated on the wall surface and it began to crumble. When the wall was crushed, revealing Ceres, Murtaugh, Jason, Delphin and Rio, the Bloodwolf asked Cypher, Do you know these people?
“Yes, they’re my friends. Did you just do a charm?” asked Cypher.
Yes, I am a Spellweaver, the Bloodwolf answered.
After discussing with his friends what to do with the Bloodwolf, Cypher went with his own choice. He walked over to the Bloodwolf and asked, “Do you like it here?”
Not really. I’m lonesome here and I get the occasional visit from someone who tries to hurt me. That includes the atrocious Lord Seniphos, the Bloodwolf said to everyone.
“How would you like to be my second companion?” asked Cypher while exchanging smiles with Delphin.
Thank you very much. I accept your offer, the Bloodwolf answered.
“Your name is…Aelus!” exclaimed Cypher happily. “Aelus the Bloodwolf!”
After an hour of following Aelus and telling him about themselves and Phoebe and the prophecy, Aelus told them he’d help them
“Can you really steel another being’s power?” asked Jason.
Yes, I can do that, said Aelus.
An awkward silence spread infectiously, causing the group to grow somnolent. The silence had expanded in a rapid pace; the only sound was the jingling of the chains bound to Aelus’s chest. The more steps they took; all the more wariness was broadened. They walked carefully, checking for any loose obstacles that could wreak havoc upon those who stepped on them. Deep breaths and footsteps pounded quietly at the air, like a scarf hitting the ground several times. Ceres outstretched her minds invisible tendrils attempting to touch any mind or life form: a new skill she’d learned. She felt nothing… until finally, a strong life energy was revealed to her. It was being weakened every second, as if every breath would steal another. She touched the creature’s mind. Ceres didn’t quite yet have the ability to see memories, but she could speak. But the mind she touched was far away. She spoke to the human, yes human she figured out.
Hello, it’s Ceres. Can you hear me? Hello?
Ce…Ceres? It’s, it’s me, Phoebe. Help me! I…ah!
And the connection was lost. Ceres dropped to her knees. Her face drained from colour. The cracked stone floor rumbled intensely.
“Ceres! Are you alright?” asked Cypher.
“I…I—help me up,” she said.
After helping her up, Cypher pulled Delphin close and whispered,"What happened to her Delphin? She looks... drained." Cypher walked over to the spot where Ceres lay. Carefully, he picked up the arm that was hanging over her head and staired into her shiny blue eyes.
"Are you okay Ceres?" asked Jason. He had a tint of sorrow in his voice. It looked like his lip was quivering.
"Um, I'm, erm--I'm okay. Honest!" she said slowly.
"What happened to you?" asked Cypher.
"I, I saw Phoebe. She was in my mind. I talked to her. I heard her scream! Then I just, zoned out," explained Ceres regretfully.
"That's okay. Let's just keep goin--" Cypher stopped.
A snap was heard. A strange rustling sound grew louder and louder by the second. An ominous wind blew through the room, whistling and swirving around objects. The air grew cold, the lights dimmed to a faint glow in the darkened room. An echo of footsteps rang through the room, becoming louder, closer. Closer... closer... closer. An outline of a tall figure could just barely be seen in the doorway in front of the group. Cypher fingered his way aruond the surface of a table and touched a candlestick. "Illuminate and ignite!" he said.
A spark flickered into existence on the candlestick and burned brightly, illuminating the room with a weak glow. Cypher gestured at the fire and flicked a finger into the air. The faint fire twirled and grew brighter and taller. The light cast a warm glow over the room. Then, the figure was revealed. It looked human, but at the same time, Cypher knew it couldn't possibly be. Minions of Seniphos were not able to enter Spatial Tower, so what was it? The creature had blue mane lining its body in full. It had occaisional white circles dotting its body. Its eyes were like Ceres's: shiny blue, like a sparkling ocean under the bright glow of the sun. A black ponytail hung from the back of the creature's head. It held a sword in its right hand. That's when Cypher looked at it's hand. Its hands had fancy swirls and squiggly lines decorating them. From the front it looked human once you got past the blue fur, the solemn expression and the hooves. Wait, hooves?! Cypher thought. He examined the creature careully. It advanced into the room. As it did, the group moved back. It had the torso of a man...and the rest of it was that of a blue horse.
"Cen...Cent...Centaur," mumbled Murtaugh.
Murtaugh backed away from the Centaur. He tripped on the leg of a table and felll back. The Centaur's expression softened. As Murtaugh stood up, the Centaur advanced carefully. The sword vanished from view, and was replaced with a bow and a quiver of arrows, slung over its shoulder.
"I am Sileus, leader of the race of Centaurs," he said. "Why are you journeying through this place. Venturing is mot always safe in an unknown place."
"Sileus," Aelus advanced in between Murtaugh and Sileus, "they are with me."
"Oh really, is that so Aelus? Well, I'm sure that with you they'll be safe. But maybe I should remind you; it would be best not to be left isolated in this place. It is like a foreign country to them. Getting lost is not an option," Sileus answered.
"Sileus--" Aelus started.
"You need not worry about us, we'll be fine. Unless, there is something to be afraid of, seeing as you're being so very cautious, you can leave us--we'll hold our own just fine," Cypher interrupted.
"You would do well to watch your tone; our race is not one wanted to have as an enemy," Sileus said. He then turned and galloped on, retreating to the shadows. When the faint sound of hooves had faded on into the deepest hallways, Aelus said to Cypher, "Good job. He will not bother us again."
And then they began to walk again. They walked, and talked and walked some more. They climbed up another set of stairs and found an old faded sign.
Top of Tower
Cypher smiled, and headed past the refrence sign. He turned around sharply after hearing a sound. A blurry, tall shadow flew past his eyes.