Silent Rose Library, PaxOku, Homare-jima, Tokuno, Chesapeake (PaxLair Times) – July 25, 2011– by Tatania Karthina –
Kelin was on the adventure of his life although it wasn’t much fun. Should he fail his Father and his Aunt’s fiancé would both die. This is the thoughts that kept running through Kelin’s mind as he galloped toward home. “I am their only chance” was the mantra he sang in his mind as the dust billowed behind him. So intent was Kelin on his mantra that he did not notice the two girls riding like the wind beside him for a time.
When he finally noticed them he pulled up his reigns and stared at them both with amazement. The girls did not seem to be solid though were almost solid. Both were pretty and seemed to be near his age of 9 years. Even more confusing was that Kelin vaguely rememberes seeing them both somewhere before, but he just can’t think of where. “Who are you?” Kelin asked the girls.
“I am Constance and this is Amelia”, said the girl who seemed to be a little older. “We are here to guide and help you. You cannot possibly finish this quest without us.”
“I have to concentrate on the quest. I cannot concentrate on protecting you. If I could I would have brought Tara and Lilly with me.”, Kelin told them.
“We do not need protecting”, said Amelia. “We are your Spirit guides on this quest. We can help you and manipulate things in the world but nobody but you can see or hear us.”
Kelin remembers the words of the old Chief and looks to the girls, “Chief Spirit Walker told me the old woman would guide me, not two girls.”
Constance’s face split into a huge smile before she told him, “I am that old woman. I can choose any age when I am a guide. I prefer to be your own age, little Prince.”
“I am no Prince and I am not little! I am just a boy who must save my Father and Uncle.” Kelin retorted.
“You are many thing which you know nothing of yet Kelin Broadrick Steel. Do not discount that which you do not yet understand. Knowledge and understanding come in time.”, Amelia said as she smiled to him.
“We must go now Kelin. The Steels follow us at a brisk pace. We’re going too far west. We should be going more north. I know the way.” Constance said.
The three of them turn north and hurry through the night, turning north. As the trio nears the hedge maze Kelin speaks to the girls, “I only knew how to get there from home. Thank you. This is shorter.”
“There is a book somewhere within the inner ring of hedges. You must find this book and write down the instructions and ingredients for the cure. Then we will gather the ingredients.” Constance says.
Kelin and the girls ride into the maze, Kelin drawing his bow and notching an arrow in it. He lets the girls lead the way since they seem to know just which way to turn. Once they reach near the center, there are perils beyond anything Kelin has ever faced. It took him all but his last arrow to kill two imps. He at last sees a book on the ground and jumps over the hedge, scratching his arms as they graze the hedges.
Suddenly a daemon comes from nowhere and roars at him. Kelin bellows, “I am just a boy! What am I supposed to do with this?” He takes out his dagger and dodges and swipes at the daemon, barely injuring it.
“Use your strengths Kelin”, said Amelia calmly.
The daemon breathes fire on Kelin and singes his hair and burns his arm. “I’ve barely began training! I have no strengths!”, Kelin says frantically as he dodges a huge swipe from the daemon.
“You have strengths if I say you have strengths young Prince and I do say so.”, says Constance. “You are a natural born leader and often lead the games that you play with your family.”
“Oh right… That’s not going to help! Hey DOG BREATH! wanna play fetch?”, Kelin bellows.
The daemon pauses in trying to kill Kelin and perks his ear toward him then amazingly wags his backside. Kelin almost laughs at the picture that made but refrained, instead taking an explosion potion from his pouch and tying it onto his last arrow with a bit of twine. Notching the arrow, he pulls back and makes the arrow and potion soar through the air a good distance away. “Fetch it boy!” Kelin says in what he hopes in an excited playful voice.
The daemon trots off toward the potion and Kelin runs to the book and writes it all down faster than he ever has written before. He hears an explosion in the distance and a roar of anger. Getting a good running start, Kelin jumps over the hedge and mounts his horse. “Let’s go!” he says to the girls as they zig and zag their way out of the maze.
Once on the outside of the maze and in relative safety, Kelin looks at the notes he had written.
“The Prince Cure”
The Prince Cure is an old family cure that has been passed down from generation to generation. The person brewing the cure must be a Prince and must be on a Dream Quest for the cure to work. It is guaranteed to cure anything if administered by the same Prince. Only 10 bottles of cure can be made at a time. The Prince must go on another Dream Quest to obtain more.
- Total refresh potion
- Samuel’s Secret Sauce
- Jar of Honey
- Fresh Ginger
- Green Tea
- Pitcher of Wine
- Orange petal
- Petal from a Rose of Trinsic
- A Red Leaf
Any Prince may brew the cure, but only a Prince that understands their quest will be able to administer the cure successfully.
Princes beware! When you administer the cure you are entering into a magical contract and your services will be needed at a future date. Is the reason for administering the brew worth the risk?
Kelin finishes reading the information and looks to the girls, “The ingredients are easy but the understanding is not. Let’s start with the ingredients. I can get them all from home.”
The girls look to one another with what seems to be worry but then nod to Kelin and trot off with him toward Nidaros. Something was wrong. It was noticeable from a mile away from the Steel Manor. Smoke curled in the air which causes Kelin to speed toward his home frantically. The sight twisted his heart and the burning in his eyes could have been from the thick smoke or the tears streaking his now sooty face. Steel Manor was burned to the ground and still smoldering.
Kelin looks to the girls, “What do we do now?” he asks them.
“The ingredients are still easy.” says Amelia
“But the understanding and brewing you’ll still need help with. Are you willing to go to your Mother’s family to ask for help?” asks Constance.
“I would but I do not know anything about my mother or her family. I only know that she died in a fire to save me. The fire was meant to kill my father.” Kelin answered. “I would like to know my Mother’s family.” the lad says wistfully.
“We can take you to your family Kelin. Just know that while you’re there we’ll only be able to visit you in your dreams. When you are ready to return to the village, we will be able to guide you.” Amelia says.
The three ride to Skara Brae Docks and board Kelin’s ship, setting a course to the Serpent’s Pillar and after saying the magic word, they travel on to Papau docks. After docking the ship, they ride through the Lost Lands as hard as they can, avoiding fights when they can. The way is perious but the three make it to the outskirts of Delucia by dusk. Twenty-Four of the Seventy-Two hours had already passed.
Kelin knocks on the door of his Mother’s family home, grimy, covered in soot and scratched from head to toe. Surprisingly, the old woman from his dreams answers the door. “You’re Constance, aren’t you? You’re my family?”
The old woman smiles brightly to him, “I am Constance and it’s good to see you again Kelin. Please come in. We do not have a moment to waste. I have all the ingredients assembled for you.”
Kelin walks with her to the still and even though he is exhausted, mixes and brews the cure exactly as she instructs him. Before he knows it, the cure is finished.
“I must get back to the village now. Thank you for your help.” Kelin tells her.
“The potion must age for the required amount of time Kelin and there is still the understanding to have. For now, rest and then eat. We’ll still have time to talk before you leave. It’s imperative that you understand or the cure will not work. Now go rest.” Constance tells him in a voice that says louder than words that she will not tolerate being argued with.
Kelin doesn’t think he’ll be able to rest but is instantly asleep the moment his head hits the pillow.
The dream began immediately. Kelin was sitting in a beautiful garden with the Constance and Amelia, but both were older. Amelia was a beautiful young woman and Constance was a still beautiful middle aged woman. The women sat side by side and smiled to Kelin. “We can’t tell you what you need to understand Kelin, but we can give you hints.” said Amelia.
“Our appearance now is a hint Kelin.” said Constance.
Kelin looked to them closer and tried to puzzle what they meant, “What am I supposed to understand?”
“You’re supposed to know how you’re a Prince. Of course this is difficult for you because you know so little of your past.”
“I can’t be royalty! I’m just Kelin.” Kelin replied.
“Think Kelin Broadrick Steel. You are just. True and Just and faithful to those you love”, Amelia added. “Tell me this Kelin. Who do you think of as your mother?”
“My Aunt Milla is the only mother I know and I love her with all my heart.” Kelin answered.
“Who do you consider to be your Father?” Constance asked.
“Uncle Chase is the only Father I have ever known.” replied Kelin without pause.
“Yet you travel all over the world and put yourself in danger to save who Kelin?” Amelia asks.
“My Father, of course.” Kelin pauses and little wrinkles form between his eyes as he thinks hard. “But I consider Chase my father, yet I consider Gnieus my Father as well. A boy can’t have two fathers.” Kelin looks devastated by this realization.
“You are wrong Kelin.” Amelia says kindly. “Chase has been your Father for most of your life and never let anything or anyone take that love from your heart. Yet still, you barely know Gnieus yet he is your Father. You are risking your life for that chance to know him. Do you not think your heart can hold enough love for both men?”
Kelin nods slowly and looks to the women, “I understand this part now but it gets me no closer to being a Prince.”, Kelin says.
Constance smiles to Kelin, “Understanding will come. For now, your Grandmother is ready to speak with you and has your dinner prepared. We’ll be there for you when it is time to leave this place, young Prince.”
With that pronouncement, a mist covers his dream and Kelin awakens, completely refreshed.
Kelin opens his eyes and sees Constance, as the old woman again, “Grandmother? You’re my Grandmother?”
“I am Kelin and I have waited so very long to tell you how much I love you.” she says and opens her arms to him.
Kelin hugs his Grandmother then settles at the table to eat his dinner. She asks him if he and his cousins will all come for a nice visit as soon as possible. She tells him of his Grandfather, a man of the name of Bart Firebolt. She tells him of their life together and that he had passed away when Kelin was about 3 years old. Before Kelin knew it, it was time for him to go and he was no closer to understanding than he had been. It turns out that Grandmother was an Elder mage and was able to open a magical gate close to the village. Kelin still had twenty-four hours to spare and the potion would be aged enough to use in twelve hours. Not much time to understand, he thought.
Kelin’s Grandmother Constance kisses him on the cheek with promises to see him soon then send him through the magical gate. Kelin comes out just outside of the camp, where he left from to begin with. Kelin’s arrival in camp certainly causes an uproar. At least he had cleaned up and his Mama didn’t cause too big of a scene from all the cuts and scratches. After many hugs from his family, Kelin goes straight to the bed where his Father is still unconscious and burning with fever.
“I brought you a cure Father but it has not finished aging yet and I still don’t understand what I need to know to make it work.” Kelin tells him softly. He takes his father’s hand and just sits with him as the minutes and then hours pass by. His family all try to distract him but he flat out refuses to leave his Father’s side. Constance and Amelia sit quietly with him, although nobody else can see nor hear them. Both girls are the women of his dream rather than the girls who guided him through his quest. Both of the women have concerned expressions and Amelia holds his Father’s other hand the entire time.
Kelin’s mind works furiously for three hours then four and before he knows it, twelve hours have passed and the potion is ready. Kelin looks frantically to his Father then to Amelia and Constance and something clicks in his mind. Kelin Broadrick Steel… He looks to Amelia and in that unguarded moment sees love shining in her damp eyes as she looks to his Father… “Amelia Firebolt Broadrick!” Kelin exclaims!
Startled, Amelia looks up to him and smiles. Kelin looks to Constance. That means…
Kelin uncorks the bottle of cure and carefully pours it into his Father’s mouth, understanding at last what had been kept from him during the quest. “Drink Up Father. I am a Prince and this will make you well again.” Kelin says with confidence.
After his father had drank the entire bottle, Kelin moves to Sunshine’s bed and uncorks another bottle, carefully making sure Sunshine got every drop. He looks up to Spirit Walker who smiles and winks to him before settling beside his son again and taking his hand.
Kelin moves back to his father and takes his hand as well. “Come on Father. Please wake up. I need you.”
Chase and Milla stand quietly in the room, his arm around her, a slight frown on his face. He leans to Milla and whispers softly, “Why do I feel like I just lost a son?
Milla squeezes her husband where her arm is about his waist and whispers back, “It will be alright Chase. You’ll see. Kelin after all is the one who taught us both how to love. Do you honestly think, knowing that young man as you do that his love will fade for you when he opens his heart to another?”
Chase nods hearing her words and looks to Kelin, his chest swelling with pride watching him and his heart overflowing with love for him and because of him. Chase walks over and claps a hand to Gnieus’ shoulder and speaks softly but clearly, “Come on brother. Please wake up. We all need you.”
Kelin smiles and holds Chase’s hand, suddenly looking down at his own hands. He is holding hands with both of his fathers and has never felt safer or more love in his life, “Thanks Papa”, Kelin simply says as he looks up to Chase.
The entire family joins the vigil around both beds, all linking hands and murmuring their prayers in their hearts. Broadricks, Steels, Savages and somehow, unnoticed by anyone except Spirit Walker and Kelin, Constance Firebolt. Kelin knew in the moment he saw his Grandmother that he had been correct. The middle aged Constance was gone, but still wrapped within the family’s love was Amelia.
The Saga of Kelin and his adventures will continue in “The Adventures of Kelin 14 – Prince Secrets, coming soon to the bookstore at The PaxOku Silent Rose Library!
Peace and Knowledge be with you!
July 25, 2011