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Eltiqua :The story of an Elf girl
Chapter one: Beginning of Discovery
Still at Home
Mother received a letter in the mail about a school called Parleen just for elves. She said it would be a good place for me to go, and besides, I was of elf origin.
She gave me a diary so I could remember all what happened when I was there. It is very pretty, I think, with its leather bindings and colorful pictures of the Enchanter's Wood, the sea, and my home.
I think I should start describing our home, in case it changes. There is a huge waterfall just outside the door. It is for protection, because there are Humans coming to visit every once in a while. Inside the waterfall there are five homes carved into the wall face. We have gardens inside, with thousands of different plants and flowers and herbs we need. My room is large. It has a mural of the Sea Kingdom on the North Wall, the Jungle Kingdom on the South Wall, and the Two Woods on the Eastern and Western walls. My bed is at the center of a Protection Circle, as are my Fathers' and Mothers' and siblings'.
I don't know if I want to go. I like it here, right where I am. Mom said that school starts next month. No, in less than a month. It sounds fun, but I'm not so sure that I am ready to go there by myself.
I am going to the city!!
I didn't know we would be this quick to look for stuff for the new school. Anyway, as I was saying, we went to Elf Hollow, the center of all shopping places. And I saw Kitsura and Tal-Tal there. Of all places, there they were. Kitsura ran up to me and was like, 'Hi! I didn't know you were here! Did you get a letter from Parleen too?'
'Yes, I did. I didn't know you were here!'
'Mom's dragging us all over the Hollow,' Said Tal-Tal, 'Saying things like 'did you get all of your' oh no, we still have got drotches to look for, and scales'am I the only one who cares?!' (Drotches are small, fast Transporters that look like skate boards but they hover on the ground and blast forward if you want it to.)
Then we all saw Kim coming toward us and shouting, 'I have been looking for you! The Carols are here! They brought the whole state of Trabor!'
Kitsura gasped. 'Did you say the whole state of Trabor? Wow, I heard they were really good! And the came all the way from the Isle of Dreams?'
Kim nodded. 'And they are giving a concert. For free! Can you believe that? Lets ask our parents if we can go.'
Tal-Tal laughed. 'I don't think mom would let us go. She'd say, 'Oh, but we still have so much to do! Can't that wait?' Honestly.'
'I could probably change her mind! Can I please try? Please?' asked Kim, clapping her hands together and putting on a sad face.
'Oh, all right. But if she says no, don't try again.' Said Tal-Tal.
I decided to ask Mother, so I pranced up to her and said, 'Mom, could I please, please, please, please go to The Carols free concert? You know, the ones from the Isle of Dreams?'
Mother was looking at guarding 'bots, so she was startled when I came up from nowhere and said that.
'Err' what did you say? Oh! O' course you can, I mean!' She said as she dropped the 'bot. It muttered darkly at her and folded its arms.
'Alright! See ya' later!' I raced off to meet Kim, Tal-Tal, and Kitsura.
'What took ya' so long, Amber Thatchstorm? They are starting, ya' know!' said Kim.
'I see you talked her into it. And I prefer to be called just Amber, ' I said. No one usually called me Amber Thatchstorm unless they were really annoyed.
'Sorry, I forgot.'
'Yep, she sure did.'
'You better believe it!'
'Oi, where are the Carols?'
I turned around and saw Pine, K.K. (Kari Kamling), and Iris behind' was that Terror?!
'Hi, Shorty.' Shorty was his nickname for me, even though I wasn't short at all.
'You going to the concert, huh? And I am reallyreallyreallyreallyreally hyper! Can I hit a punching bag? Or my sister?' Said Terror, literally bouncing up and down.
'Yeah, uh'did you have like, pine bark for breakfast or something?' I asked.
'Nope, I had Pettorie Butter Spice for breakfast.' Said Terror.
'That explains it,' said Kim, eyeing him. Kim had never really liked him, but oh well. Terror had a muscular build, short black hair, and the darkest eyes you could ever imagine. He grinned happily at them and then turned to Iris and said, 'What was it that the Corders want to know again, about the Games next week? Woohoo can't wait until the Games are over!! Who are you rooting for?' he was walking backwards and stumbled over Kim, who muttered at him darkly and eyed him with open dislike.
Iris looked at him with admiration (she had a crush on him since they first met) and said in her flowery voice, 'The Fledgling of Iron, of course! Why would I root for the Charcoal Tumblings? Honestly.' Iris had long silver hair that was braided in the middle with midnight blue eyes that could turn to an icy mist in a second. She was slender and tall, as was the charastics of her family. 'Do you have any tickets?' she asked me.
'Yes, but only because Dad got them before the Tinkers closed out. What seats did you get? We got the common seats.'
Iris was about to answer but Kim cut in and said, ' Hello? We are missing a concert here!! And it's all your fault, Terror!' and looked at him with glowering eyes.
'It was my fault, don't get mad at him!' exclaimed Iris, alarmed at the look in Kim's eye. Kim grumbled at her but turned around and walked with Tal- Tal and Kitra to the front entrance.
Inside the large tent-it had been made to look like a solid building- was two smaller entrances, each teeming with elves trying to get a seat. A beautiful chandelier made out of tree limbs and leaves hung over them. There were many colorful hangings that depicted many famous battles, though not one of them I knew.
'Wow! Can you wait to learn about those battles or what? Can't wait 'till we can go to Parleen!' Iris said happily, her eyes alight with wonder. She was right; I wanted to learn about them to, since we weren't allowed to in the Starter schools. Starter schools only taught the basics; cooking, beginners fighting classes, beginners tracking, and some history. But the rest of the schooling was normal, like the 'English' speaking classes and the Elvish speaking classes, writing, science, and spelling. Then you could get accepted into other schools after you finished the six years in the Starter schools, based on how well you did with the six years. Apparently Parleen was an advanced one, and I should be happy about going to it.
'Come on, let's get in line!' Kim yipped excitedly. Tal-Tal rolled his eyes and mouthed, 'so bossy!' Which got me to giggling. And Kim asking me what was so funny. So I just said, 'I'm so excited!' She believed me.
It took us twenty to thirty minutes to get through the doors! I thought they were going to start when we weren't in there! But we finally got in there and found our seats when the candles flickered and went dim. The stage, which was made of wood carved with intricate symbols, lit up.
A woman walked gracefully onto the stage. She was wearing a midnight blue cloak that swirled around her when she walked, and had black glossy hair that fell to her waist. She had clear blue eyes and a small face. She smiled at the crowd seated in front of her, and began in her silky voice, 'We welcome you to the Carols. We are so delighted that you have taken your own precious time to come, and we hope you will not be disappointed. My name is Aralis, and I will be your host for the show.' She smiled at them and then began to sing in a beautiful voice that sounded like water running over rocks, and like honey dripping off a comb.
' Like the rain on a rose''
Two hours later we were out, with our ears ringing with the mysterious yet beautiful voices of the Carols. I, however beautiful the voices were, was glad to be outside in the brilliant shining sun and the wind blowing ever so slightly on my face. Sometimes being in an enclosed space made me feel' nervous.
K.K. looked around happily, then voiced my opinion of enclosed spaces: 'I am sure glad to be out in the sunshine! Closed spaces give me the creeps!' Pine snorted at her, and then ducked his head when K.K glowered at him.
'Well, I guess we should get back to where our parents are. We're staying at the inn here, you know, the really nice one! It's so lovely!' Kitsura said happily. Then she looked 'round at me, and cocking her head slightly, asked, 'Where are you staying, Amber?'
I grinned happily at her and said, 'In the same inn were you are!' Tal-Tal rolled his eyes.
'Here goes my quiet, peaceful night!' he joked.
'We won't be that loud!' Kitsura said, looking sheepishly at him. He sighed, then grinned to let her know it was a joke.
'Anyway, I gotta go, Mother's expecting me,' I said, waving to them as I raced away. I passed different stores on the way, each claiming to have better school supplies than the other, and various food places with the smells wafting out the windows. I couldn't remember where Mother said she was going to be, so I decided to guess where she was. First I went down Latter Street, but it was just a dead end.
'She might be at the inn already,' I said out loud to myself.
'Who might be at the inn?' asked a voice, and I turned around just in time to see something flash toward my head. Then I felt a sharp sting and everything went black.
Where am I?
I awoke suddenly, and finding myself in an unfamiliar place, sat up very quickly and immediately wished I hadn't. Bright lights erupted in front of my eyes, and my head started pounding something terrible. I cried out, in fear and pain.
'See now, look what you did to 'er. Why do you insist on bringing in our guest like this all the time? Honestly' a voice said somewhere near me.
'Because they might struggle, and I find that most unsettling. Besides, she'll get over it soon enough.' A cold voice answered.
'Well, you could at least see if they were going to struggle before you hit them over the head with it,' said the other one, which I decided had a foreign accent.
I opened my eyes again, this time slowly, and the flickering light of a torch was the first thing I noticed. Then I saw the wood of the structure, and the table beside the bed.
'Ahh, she is awake!' I heard the voice with the accent say.
'Of course she is awake, she just wouldn't open her eyes if she were sleeping, would she now? I don't think so.' The other voice said.
I groaned and turned over. I just wanted to be at the inn again, maybe talking with Kitsura and Tal-Tal.
'Young one, are you alright? I am sorry that my good friend Brian hit you, but you must understand, we work in a dangerous business and well' we can't be too careful,' the voice said kindly.
'Well, go ahead and flit away all our secrets, see if I care,' said the other' 'Brian', I thought. 'His name is Brian.' He had such a cold voice.
'Now, now, Brian, she is just a gal, so young. Why did you chose her, anyway?' inquired the other voice.
'Now, now,' mocked Brian, 'I'll tell you why, Larkin. It's because she's the one with the magic. Vampire, I'd say. It would be good to have her as an ally, even though she probably doesn't know the full extent of her powers.
My eyes opened wide at that. I sat up suddenly and glared at the one that I thought was Brian.
'Please, my dear, don't glare at me so,' said, to my surprise, Larkin. He was young, only in his mid twenties or so, with short brown hair and brown eyes. He had some freckles across his nose and had that mischievous look in his eye, the one that Tal-Tal usually gets when he has an idea. He was slim, but built at the same time.
'What, haven't you ever noticed that you were different than everyone else? Except maybe with those friends you hang out with, which reminds me, the others are in the rooms next to us. I think I'll go ahead and gather them all to talk to them about' their futures.' And then he left.
What I saw of him was' well, chilling. He had long, silky black hair and pale skin. His eyes were dark, and he was very, very thin. He was wearing all black; his shirt was an open v-neck that showed his chest.
'Oh, my he is an odd one. Doesn't always have to wear all that black, it's not like we're in the olden times.' said Larkin. My eyes widened.
'What? You mean you're all' vampires? How did you find me?' I asked, my voice sounded surprised. 'I'm not a vampire! I'm an elf! I'm going to Parleen, the finest school for elves.'
He looked quite surprised too. His face started to look lively, and before I knew it, loud peals of laughter emitted from his mouth. His eyes were bright and merry. 'That's a good one! We used Parleen to get your Mother to come here to Elf Hollow. You also have a very different shopping list. You're going to Eltiqua, a school just for immortal and magical beings, like yourself. There'll be elves, werewolves and vampires, shape shifters, and so on.' Larkin's eyes sparkled happily.
'What about' witches? They're not there, I hope?' Witches were evil. They would kill you in a second. You couldn't trust any of them.
'What, them? No, of course not! We would not invite those vile creatures to one of the finest schools for our kind!' He again sounded surprised. 'Don't you know anything?' He grinned to soften the insult. I frowned. Then in came Brian with' my friends?
'Let's see,' I thought, ' Kitsura, Tal-Tal, Kim, Pine, K.K., Iris, and Terror? Are they all vampires too?'
'Well, have a happy reunion while you can,' drawled Brian. 'We're about to start this so-called meeting.' He glared around at us all. We didn't say anything, we were that surprised. 'All right, then. Let's just get started. Sit down, in a circle and absolutely no talking!'
'You don't have to be that mean, you know, it's just a semi-meeting. We'll meet the others in April,' said Larkin, in a slightly reproving tone.