This blog is all about me and how my different beliefs and perspectives make me weird. At first, I had no intention of posting my stories to my blog, but now that seems to be the biggest reason people visit my blog, lol! So come read about me, and let me know what you think!
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Saturday, April 11, 2015
Unexpected - Part 4 - Surprise!
My facebook friends might remember me mentioning recently that I came across a short story that I had written a while ago, that I had basically left hanging and didn't know where I was going with it. Well, I got inspired to finish it, and while I am doing that, I am going to post what I had already written but didn't post back then (hence part 4). THAT said, if you don't know or remember the story, you can read it here: Unexpected - Part 1
HINT: You do actually need to read the story from the beginning to know what is going on here in part 4. Happy Reading!
Justina called out angrily. “I'm telling on you unless you come out
of hiding right
you're no fun!” James pouted as he came out of hiding. Branches
rustled noisily as he climbed down the tree. When he was able to drop
to the ground, he poked his sister lightly on the nose. “What are
you bugging me for? I thought you were practicing magic.”
said that I could take a break,” Justina informed him with a shrug.
“More importantly, what are you
doing out here? I thought you were supposed to be practicing your
skills with a sword.”
James growled in frustration,
flopping to the ground to tear at the grass. “I hate it! I'm just
not as good as you are with a sword! I'd rather do magic!”
Justina shrugged again, sitting at
the foot of the tree so that she could pluck some flowers to make a
crown. “So do magic,” she stated as if this was the simplest and
easiest solution in the world.
James roared, obviously upset. “Don't you think I tried that! Dad
said that because I was his only son, he needed
to be a good swordsman. He doesn't think that magic is important to
practice when I'm already so good at it! He wants me to fight or
hunt, so I told him that I was hunting.”
and papa both have magic,” Justina murmured, biting her lip in
thought. “I wonder why they don't just tell dad to let you do magic
if that's what you want?”
wish I knew...” James said with a sigh.
Justina continued to look up at
the sky for a few more moments before she abruptly erupted in
giggles. “It's funny, isn't it?”
James asked, his brow furrowed in confusion.
you're a boy who's not so good at fighting with a sword, and I'm a
girl who's not so good at using magic! By rights, shouldn't it be the
other way around?” Justina asked, still giggling.
There you are!” Cedric stated with a warm smile. “I've been
looking for you everywhere.”
James had been softly chuckling,
but now he growled in frustration again. “I'm not done hunting yet!
I refuse to go back and practice with a sword some more until I've
Cedric continued to smile as he
slowly shook his head. “I wasn't here to ask you to go back. I
thought it might be a good time to practice your magic.”
James sat up as straight as
possible. “You mean that?!”
Cedric laughed, nodding in
confirmation. He sat on the ground with them. “Of course I do.
You're only ten after all; you have plenty of time to grow up and get
better with a sword.”
must I learn to use a sword at all?” James cried out, dearly
wanting to understand.
Gavin is the son of a well respected Lord, and as such, it's a point
of pride for him to teach his only son how to use a sword. Besides,
you never know, it may come in handy some day,” Cedric explained
the best he could.
sighed. “But I'm better at magic. You
don't use a sword because you can use magic, so why can't I?”
Cedric didn't have the heart to
tell his son that it was because he loved Gavin so much that he
simply couldn't deny him anything. Especially not when Gavin wasn't
hurting their son, he was simply frustrating him and challenging him
to learn what could potentially be an important skill.
Instead, he simply shrugged. “You
are both positively brimming with magic, so I can understand why you
would prefer to do something that comes easily to you, but that
doesn't mean that swords are unimportant.”
bounced excitedly, especially now that she had her crown finished and
atop her head. “Of course they aren't! I love
swords! I could pretend to fight off a horde of bandits all
if mother would let me!” She proved this by jumping to her feet and
unsheathing the sword that she had on her at all times. With a nearly
expert flick of her wrist, she invited an invisible opponent to
boomed with laughter. “You are the only 8 year old girl I have ever
known that probably could
fight off a bandit horde!”
Justina nodded as if this was a
common fact, then she stopped short to look at her father. “But you
are wrong about one thing, papa; I don't have much magic.”
you do,” Cedric assured her with a loving smile. “You just don't
resumed her pretend fight. “Dad says that I should focus on being a
healer like mama, but memorizing herbs is so
be so hard on him,” Cedric ordered softly. “Gavin simply believes
that a man should protect a woman. He still has a hard time with the
concept that a woman might be able to protect a man.”
James had heard this before, so he
simply ignored it and continued to practice his magic by making all
the grass and flowers grow bigger. Justina, on the other hand,
frowned at her father. She was offended by this, but didn't really
papa... why does it matter who is protecting who? There's really
nothing to protect anyone from, just wolves and the occasional
bandit. Only when we go to visit either of our grandparents do we run
into trouble, but...” She frowned even deeper, unsure of the point
she was trying to make. She tried anyway. “But even when we run
into a large group of bandits, they usually just leave us alone. I
understand the desire to protect, but protect from what?”
chuckled, a strange smile crossing his face. “Those bandits all
leave us alone because they well remember what we've done to them in
the past. They know it's not worth their trouble to attack us... But
who's to say that won't change in the future? If it happens, you'd
better be prepared to defend yourselves!”
snorted in amusement. “You must
be joking! Why would bandits be afraid of you, dad, and mama?” He
simply couldn't imagine why his parents were considered too much
trouble to attack.
Cedric tilted his head to the side
as he thought about how to answer this. “Hmm... I think that's
because you have lived with us your whole lives; you are simply too
close too see how strong we are. Your father is one of the best
swordsmen in the world, and I am fairly good at magic...” He paused
and a small secretive smile stole across his lips as he looked at the
ground. “And then there's your mother...”
James rolled his eyes. “Mama
never does anything! I mean I know she has magic because she tries to
teach it to me and Justina, but it's mostly little things like herbs
and cooking. Sometimes she uses her magic to grow plants... Certainly
nothing to fear!”
Cedric laughed. “You know what?
Your mother has a very deep and hidden well inside her. If you ever
saw her truly angry, you'd wet yourself before you ran to hide!”
James stared at his father with an
incredulous look. Even Justina paused her epic battle in order to
snort in disbelief as she stared at him. He saw their looks and
only hope I get to see the looks on your faces if it ever happens!”
A branch on the forest floor
snapped not too far away from them, alerting them that their mother
was coming towards them. She muttered a silly expletive as she fell
the ground, then picked herself up and continued on as if nothing had
happened. Her face lit up with joy when she saw them.
my love! I thought you were in the house making dinner!” She
informed him as she straddled his lap and then gave him a thorough
kiss. Both her son and daughter looked away in annoyance. They saw
their parents kiss all
and it was starting to gross them out.
Once he was able, Cedric smiled at
Failina and explained what was going on. “I decided that my time
would be better spent reassuring our children that the world is not
as unfair as they think it is.”
course not!” Failina drawled happily. “We rarely get snow here,
much less an eternal blizzard!”
Cedric hummed in thought a moment.
“You know, perhaps we should take them to visit my parents during
the winter this year. They might like to see the snow and learn to go
sledding or skating.”
Failina nearly whispered, obviously not liking the idea. Then she
smiled. “Actually, that might be fun after all! We should see what
Gavin thinks about it.”
Cedric laughed huskily, nibbling
on Failina's ear. “If the two of us are in agreement when we ask
him, you know he'll do anything.”
Failina agreed, her voice also husky from the desire that Cedric was
We right here!” James reminded them.
know,” Failina stated with a smirk at her son.
son and daughter just reminded me a few moments ago that they've
never seen the scary Fai,” Cedric told her, changing the subject.
haven't?!” Failina asked in surprise. “I was sure they had...”
Cedric confirmed. “Apparently they only ever see you use your magic
for little things. Lighting candles is what comes to my mind.”
A mischievous look crossed
Failina's face that plainly told her lover that she was about to do
something shocking. She looked around until she saw a fox that would
make an excellent dinner, then she pointed at it and shouted:
“Lightning!” A long line of lightning shot out from her fingertip
to strike the fox, who shook for a moment before falling to the
Both her children exhaled in awe. They had no idea that anyone could
do such a thing!
guess I'd better go skin that,” Failina stated, pushing on Cedric's
shoulders to help herself stand up. She kissed him one last time.
“I'll make dinner too.”
while you're at it, talk to Gav,” Cedric suggested with a smile.
“He's probably still upset.”
do!” Failina assured him with a grin. She waved and blew kisses to
her children as she walked over to the fox and picked him up.
Carrying him carefully in both arms, she walked home.
my love, where are you?” Failina called. A steady thudding noise
told her that he was probably near the barn, which was exactly where
she needed to go. She waited until she got close enough to see him
whacking a tree with one of his dull practice swords. “Gav?”
He looked up to see her walking
towards him. She tried her hardest not to trip on anything, but
almost inevitably, she did anyway. Gavin rushed to catch her just in
time. He shook his head with a wry smile.
let me carry that for you,” he offered, taking the fox from her.
bringing it to the slaughter room to skin and hang up,” Failina
told him needlessly.
might help me take my mind off things,” Gavin murmured.
Failina purred in sympathy and
threw her arms around his neck so that she could kiss him. “Why are
you so upset?”
practically refuses to touch a sword, and you know how important this
is to me!” Gavin roared in frustration.
Failina sighed, shook her head,
and then smiled at him lovingly. “I do know... but maybe it might
be time to consider letting him take a break for a couple of months
or a year or two. Then – when he's ready – you can teach him
everything you know.”
Gavin pursed his lips in
disapproval and lightly shook her off. “No! What if...” He looked
to the ground and then decided to resume walking towards the barn.
“What if something terrible happens to all three of us and James
and Justina have to make their way to my family lands? Who would
protect them? No one! They'd have to protect themselves! How can they
do that if James knows nothing about a sword?!”
magic, I would guess,” Failina murmured cheerfully. She clapped her
hands happily. “I saw Cedric teach James how to cast a shield the
other day, and he did an excellent job!”
Gavin sighed in defeat. “Maybe
you're right, but...” he shrugged as he set the fox on a counter so
he could gather up a few knives and other supplies. “The more he
knows, the better!”
Failina nodded as she shrugged.
Then she pulled him close and kissed him again. “I love you!”
Gavin rolled his eyes, still rather gruff and stingy when it came to
expressing his feelings.
love you too,” he admitted.
Now, since you're going to take care of my fox, I'll go in and
concentrate on making dinner.”
Gavin nodded in agreement,
smacking her on the rear as she walked away. “Can you make those
biscuits I love?”
for you, my love!” Failina promised with a flirty smile over her
About an hour later – just as
Failina was setting dinner on the table – Cedric returned with
their children and bid them to wash up. They rushed to the water pump
to do so, which allowed Cedric a few minutes alone with his beloved.
He wrapped his arms around Gavin and simply held him tight for a long
you feeling better now?” Cedric asked.
Gavin shrugged and then nodded. “I
guess I am.”
children is hard!” Cedric said with a laugh. “My parents say that
the trick is to try to give them enough love to motivate them to be
good, and enough encouragement to do the things that make them
you've said,” Gavin remarked dryly, then shook his head. “I was
raised to honor tradition. My family may have disinherited me, but I
am still the son of a Lord, and my children have the potential to use
that fact to their advantage someday – If they want to. All I ask
in return is that they learn about my heritage and family
nodded, still holding his lover tight. “I understand. The problem
is that they
Gavin sighed in frustration, then
kissed his beloved as deeply as possible considering that Gavin was
covered in blood and bits of flesh. He didn't want to dirty Cedric,
but Cedric didn't care.
James and Justina groaned in unison. James continued their complaint.
“Everywhere we look, some combination of the three of you are
Gavin and Cedric chuckled but
time to wash up!” Justina commanded. “Mama said that if you don't
come in to eat, she'll come out here and stab you with something
sharp and pointy!”
wonder if her lightning counts?” James asked no one in particular,
still amazed that his mother had such a deadly magic.
on,” Gavin ordered his children with a smile and a tilt of his
head. “We'll be in shortly.”
James nodded, his silvery-blond
hair falling into his sapphire eyes. He tugged on his sister's arm,
knowing that she was still picturing herself in an epic battle with
who knew how many opponents. He was just grateful that she didn't
have her sword out at the moment.
Justina followed him, her black
hair blowing in the wind. She squinted her golden amber eyes in
annoyance as she wished yet again that her parents would let her cut
it as short as possible. She gathered all her hair into one hand, and
then softened into a smile as she looked at it. “It's too pretty to
cut...” she muttered.
It took a good ten minutes, but
finally, everyone was ready to sit to to eat. Relative silence
reigned for a few minutes as everyone dug in, but eventually, the
moans of pleasure stopped and light conversation started.
Gav,” Failina murmured, staring at him adoringly. “Cedric and I
were wondering what you thought about going to his parents for winter
Gavin asked in astonishment. One of the things they had agreed on
when they first settled down was that they would try to avoid
excessive cold and snow in the winter by staying home, and then do
their traveling and visiting in the spring or fall.
Cedric nodded with a grin. “Yeah,
I think that James and Justina might like learning to play in the
snow. Especially since they have magic!”
aren't too sick to get out of bed,” Failina added with a grin.
A shadow passed over Cedric's face
as memories of his childhood leapt to mind. Gavin squeezed his hand
comfortingly. With a grateful smile, Cedric returned the squeeze.
“That's true,” he agreed with a slight smile.
suppose that it could be interesting,” Gavin murmured.
Justina protested. “What if we don't like the snow?”
James agreed. “I don't really like the cold.”
Cedric took a breath to prepare
for a heated argument, but was preempted when someone knocked at the
door. Failina got to her feet.
probably a neighbor in need of some healing,” she murmured, rushing
to help out. She tripped once, but managed to catch herself before
falling to the ground.
Gavin shook his head, still amused
by her clumsiness. “I know you can be graceful, so why are you
always tripping over things?”
Failina paused before opening the
door. She cast him a beautiful grin. “Because grace is actually one
of my magic powers. It's not my natural state!”
Gavin murmured with a nod of understanding. “Makes sense.”
wondered about that,” Cedric added. They had long ago accepted that
their beloved was strange, but never once thought that she might know
Failina opened the door, and then
smiled at the strangers standing there. “May I help you?”
The three men looked her up and
down with a puzzled frown. “We're looking for someone,” the most
richly dressed of the three explained. “Would you happen to be
Failina No Alahar Y Ukale Dun Falhalla?”
Gavin and Cedric exchanged puzzled
glances. After all this time, they thought they'd known everything
about their lover, but apparently not. Their eyes returned to her so
that they wouldn't miss her response.
giggled, stepping back to invite them into her home. “Why yes, but
ever calls me that! Around here, I'm simply known as Failina of
Foreston. I take it you are from my father's world.”
The three men entered her home,
the best dressed in front of the other two – who seemed to be his
guards. As one, they all dropped to one knee and bowed to her.
Everyone was astonished by this, even Failina, who had been raised on
the world they probably came from.
It has taken us a long
time to find you! I am Lord Oren and I have come to beg for your
help!” The leader of the three insisted urgently. “Our world
desperately needs you if we are ever to –”
cut him short, showing an emotion other than cheerfulness for the
first time in a very
long time. “Our world is dead! I don't know how you survived or how
you found me, but I will not go back there!” She stamped her foot
and turned her back on them. She saw her children gaping at her
You are the rightful Queen, and we need you...” Lord Oren murmured,
sounding hurt by her words. “Only you can bring life back to our
stamped her foot again. “Our world blew itself up! Why
would I want to bring life back to it?!?!”
you misunderstand...” Lord Oren nearly whispered so that he
wouldn't offend her. “There is still life there, and always has
been, it's simply in storage. We need your help to wake everyone up.”
Failina asked in a near whisper herself, this was too confusing to
wrap her head around. “What life? I saw everything destroyed!”
true, you did,” Lord Oren agreed. “But those of us who saw the
destruction coming prepared. Your father – our most beloved King
James No Alahar Y Ukale Dun Falhalla, bless his immortal soul – he
knew that there was a large possibility that things would turn out
like they did, so he instituted a program in which volunteers such as
scientists and their families went into a state of cryogenic
suspension. In the event that nuclear missiles destroyed all life on
the planet, those volunteers would be safely hidden underground until
sensors indicated that the conditions were right for life to begin
again. I myself am one of those volunteers – the guardian of the
program. Sensors detected that conditions were right and woke me up
to verify the information, but I literally cannot
wake everyone else up without you!”
had tears in her eyes, but she adamantly stood her ground. “You
still haven't given me any reason to help you. I watched everyone and
everything die, and I have no
wish to go through that ever again! As far as I am concerned, that
world is far better off with everyone asleep. If – as you say –
the world is suitable for life again, then let life live without our
kind to mess it up!”
You're Majesty! My daughter
is in one of those cryogenic containers!” Lord Oren protested, his
eyes full of tears that refused to fall.
Failina couldn't prevent a small
sob from escaping her. Both of her children leapt up to get between
her and the strangers so they could glare at them. James created a
small barrier as Justina withdrew her sword.
made our mother cry!” Justina growled threateningly.
Gavin and Cedric both wrapped
their arms around Failina to comfort her, honestly impressed with
their children's actions. They had once been told that Failina came
from a world that had destroyed itself, but they had never truly
believed her until now. Only this truth could ever make Failina cling
to them and cry like this.
Gavin stroked her hair as Cedric
let her forehead rest on his shoulder.
everything will be fine,” Cedric promised.
Gavin nodded in agreement. “We'll
be right with you every step of the way.”
sniffed and abruptly stopped crying. She turned around in Cedric's
arms to glare at Gavin. “What is that
supposed to mean?!”
that you should help your people, and we'll help you,” Gavin
explained, holding onto her arms so that she would know he was
don't understand!” Failina burst out angrily. “There's nothing
that could ever
make me go back there! Our
life is here!”
cradled her lovingly in his arms. “Failina... Gavin is right, and
you know it. What if it was our
daughter stuck in some sort of magical sleep? Wouldn't you want
someone to help her?”
our son,” Gavin added softly. “We would do anything for them,
men have come a long way to ask for your help,” Cedric pointed out.
“How could you just say no to them?”
once said that your father raised you to protect your people,”
Gavin reminded her. “Don't you owe it to them to do whatever it
takes to give them back their lives?”
Failina rested her head on Gavin's
chest for a moment, and then sighed in defeat. Taking a deep breath
in, she wiped away her tears. Squaring her shoulders, a big and
friendly grin settled onto her face.
guess you're right,” she admitted. “James, Justina, don't
threaten our poor guests. We should make them feel welcome.”
Her children looked at her in
confusion. Seeing that she was cheerful once more, they slowly nodded
in understanding. Keeping a wary eye on their guests, they let go of
their defensive stances and Justina sheathed her sword. James let his
shield evaporate, secretly relieved that the drain on his magic was
Failina addressed her guests with a smile. “Come in and sit down.
We're just now eating dinner and there's plenty left to share.”
Majesty...” Lord Oren murmured hesitantly. “We'd prefer to simply
return to your Palace, or rather, what's left of it.”
we will, as soon as I am ready. First, I'd like to hear about how you
found me. Why don't you tell your tale while I finish eating?”
Failina suggested, not really giving them any other choice. She and
her family returned to their seats.
Lord Oren and his guards stood up
and came closer to the table, but did not sit and join them. The
three of them studied James and Justina very carefully before
curiously glancing at Gavin and Cedric. None of them could figure out
which man was the father of the Prince and Princess.
Lord Oren shrugged. “There's not
much to tell. After we were woken up to verify that our world was
indeed habitable again, we obtained a device that your father had
created a long time ago. It tracks your blood. So long as you were
alive anywhere in the universe, we could eventually find you. It took
us almost three years, but finally...” He pulled a large pendant
out of his pocket and held it up for everyone to see.
remember that,” Failina whispered, holding out a hand. Lord Oren
gave it to her so that she could examine it more closely. “Father
once stabbed me with this...” It took her a long moment to finish
studying the pendant, but then she looked up at Oren.
how is it that you speak this language so fluently?”
Oren smiled at her. “That's part
of my magic. I was one of King James' most trusted diplomats... not
that I helped much in the end...”
Failina tilted her head side to
side as she squinted her eyes at Lord Oren. “I think I vaguely
pleased to hear that, my Queen. I was only ever in your presence two
or three times. Even so, I was always impressed by your strength and
dedication to winning the war. A fair Princess of only 10, the last I
saw you... and yet already a powerful warrior.”
Failina scoffed softly. “You knew my father; of
I was a powerful warrior! He would accept nothing less!”
Lord Oren bowed his head sadly.
“Do not be so hard on your father. He had five children fight and
die in the war before you were born. I don't think his heart could
bear the thought that you would die too. He did everything he could
to insure that you would know how to protect yourself.”
know,” Failina murmured. She formed a fist with her right hand and
cupped it in her left as if she was praying, but then rested her head
on her hands, which were supported by her elbows resting on the
table. “I honestly thought that I would never have to think about
my world ever again...”
don't cry!” Justina urged her.
never cry!” James added. “You never get mad or upset or sad or
when the ones I love are in danger,” Failina informed them with a
smile. Looking around at the faces of her family gave her the
strength to do what she had to. With a purposeful nod, she stood up.
Lord Oren heaved a great sigh of
relief. “Thank the Gods! There's just one small problem.” He
pulled a device out of his pocket and held it up. “This isn't
powerful enough to bring us all. It honestly has trouble transporting
the three of us across the worlds. I think even just bringing you
with us might cause it to overload and possibly explode. But I can
leave one of my guards here to prevent that from happening!”
Failina chuckled softly. “Don't
worry. I'm certain that I can get us all there. Just give me a
moment... Everyone hold hands,” she ordered, her arms outstretched
even though she closed her eyes to concentrate. She continued to
focus until she felt everyone join the circle, and then focused some
more until she could see the palace she grew up in clearly in her
Cedric stared at the massive
golden magic circle that formed on the floor under them. It was
bigger and more intricate than anything he had ever seen! Even
knowing that Failina had an ocean of power hidden inside her, he
hadn't been prepared to see it with his own eyes.
He looked to Gavin, who was also
gaping incredulously. Gavin had seen Cedric cast magic circles
thousands of times over the years, but this one made them seem like
child's play! Failina never ceased to amaze him.
and Justina were utterly agog in astonishment. Never in their whole
lives had they suspected that their mother possessed this kind of
magic! They exchanged nervous glances that plainly said: If
she's so powerful, no wonder papa thinks we are too...
As soon as Failina felt confident
that it would work out perfectly, she chanted the magic words to
complete the spell and transport them to another world. One of their
neighbors stopped by for a visit just in time to witness them all
vanish. With a shudder of disbelief, the neighbor left to spread the