Everlasting Truth

One day, Alice finds herself transported not only from her life, but from her world. She finds that those who die can be resurrected and have special abilities. The M.A.C.E.S., a group of ascended beings, both from Earth and other planets, have chosen Alice to help defend her world from the evils that lurk. With the help of her mentor, Frank, and her friends, James and Emma, Alice finds that her second life is more interesting and challenging than her first.


5. Abilities

The sensation of traveling to another world was like nothing I had ever experienced. We arrived at our destination in seconds, but it felt more like minutes as I floated, staring at the stars and the great dark abyss that was space.
        My hand never let go of the pen, even when it vibrated and flashed brilliant blues and reds. I held on tight for fear of being lost forever, forced to float through space and the endless time it inhabited.
We landed on a cold floor and I let go of the pen as the lights slowly faded, leaving us immersed in darkness.
"That was amazing," I whispered into the dark, "That was so utterly beautiful. I would love to do that again."
"And you will soon," Frank said distantly, his voice calm and serene. I smiled at the thought of traveling through space as I sat up and crossed my legs.
"Where are we?" I asked, reaching my hand out, feeling the floor around me. I heard a shuffle of feet as a light switched on overhead.
         "Lord Shalens' house," a soft voice replied from behind me.
Frank looked up and wrinkled his eyebrows. "Didn't I tell you to leave the light on, Chay?" he asked as I turned my head around to look at the mysterious person.
"Of course, my Lord," the woman said as she bobbed her head, her cropped red hair bouncing, "I know what you asked, my Lord, except..." she trailed off.
"I told her not to," another voice finished. I swiveled back around to look at the man standing behind Frank.
"Why was that, Derrek?" Frank demanded, his head arching as the man walked into his view, "I left specific instructions."
"We know, my Lord," the man said through his thick beard, "But you leave specific instructions for your arrival one day and you end up coming back a week later. We believed you to be delayed as usual."
Frank sighed and ran his fingers through his wavy hair. "Alright, I suppose you have your reasons and I have mine. Just don't do it again, okay?"
Derrek bowed, "Yes my Lord," he glanced at the blood on Frank's head and the odd bend of his legs, "Shall we get you to the infirmary?"
Frank nodded. "And tell James to come and see me once he's done with whatever project that kept him from meeting us here." Derrek nodded and quickly left the room, returning within seconds with another servant and a wheel chair.
"My Lord, this might hurt," Derrek said as he gripped Frank's arms and the other man prepared to lift his legs, "For a few seconds, of course."
"Just get it over with you two," Frank grumbled. They nodded in unison, and lifted Frank up onto the wheelchair.
"Can you walk, dear?" Chay asked, bending down until we were eye level.
I blinked, "Huh? Oh yeah, I'm fine." She held out her hand and helped me up.
"I'm Chay, by the way," the woman said, clearly amused with herself.
"Alice," I replied, looking up at the large glass chandelier that hung from the ceiling, "My name is Alice."
"Well, come along," she said, shoving me in the direction that Derrek and the other servant had left with Frank, "We need to have you looked at. Can't parade around the universe looking half-dead, can you?" She laughed at her remark and followed my gaze to the chandelier, "Lord Shalen has an extensive house, the Lustre D'amor is just one of the beauties he carries."
I smiled weakly and followed her out of the room, "I'm sure it is."

Portraits of medieval-looking men and women sat stiffly on the walls as we wound through the massive maze-like halls of Frank's house, Chay babbling on about clothes and the state of my hair.
All the while she kept saying, "Can't parade around the universe looking half-dead, can you?"
What is she talking about? I wondered when she said it for the twentieth time. I thought that I would escape from those things and stay safe and hidden, not parade around the universe. I thought of traveling through space again. That was beautiful, though.
"So your room will be just down the hall," Chay said, interrupting me from my thoughts as she waved a chubby finger down a dark hall, "I've prepared it especially to the liking of human design. But, of course you'll be in the infirmary for a while," she glanced at my poorly bandaged arm and the dark red blood soaking through, "you can use it when Phillis says you're okay."
"Phillis?" I asked politely as I slowed my pace and followed behind her, taking in the mysterious doors that were boarded over with plywood, and the occasional glimpse of people hurrying down the hallways.
"The doctor," she said as she stopped and waited for me, "Now come on, Alice. You need to get looked at." She ushered me through a broad door.
The smell of soap hit me almost immediately as the crisp white color pattern that came into view as I stepped into the room. Evenly spaced beds lined the outside walls, some occupied, but most empty.
A tall, black woman wearing an ivory lab coat and red pumps hurried over to me. "Welcome Alice!" she said enthusiastically, as she showed me to an empty bed, "I had hoped you would come in one piece, and," she gestured to all of me with her bony hands, "you did!"
Chay laughed, "Lord Shalen wouldn't bring her back otherwise. She can't parade around the universe looking half-dead, can she?"
The woman waved her arms at Chay as I kicked my shoes off and climbed under the blankets, "Alright, enough of that. Let the poor girl rest."
Chay hesitated and glanced at Frank who was laying on the bed next to mine. "It's okay," he said, sensing her discomfort, "We'll be fine. Why don't you make some gablin stew? Your's is always the best."
Chay brightened, "Very well my Lord. I'll make some right away," she curtsied and dashed out of the room.
"Gablin stew?" the black woman asked suspiciously as she turned and looked at Frank, "You can't keep it down."
"I feel bad for her, really, Phillis," Frank insisted, "Poor woman, she lost everything."
They both looked down sadly. "How?" I found myself asking. "Her family was killed during the Great Purges, she was nearly blind and starving when she stumbled upon this place. Pleaded for us to help her." Phillis shook her head, "It's a shame. Her family was one of the Great Lords. And now she works for one."
The feeling of pity washed over me as quickly as guilt did. I hope I didn't seem that annoyed, I thought, remembering how she kept saying, "Can't parade around the universe looking half-dead, can you?"
"That's sad," I said, looking away, "But what were the Great Purges?"
"You're a little too inquisitive for someone who should be resting," Phillis said as she walked towards me, her heels smacking loudly against the linoleum floor,"You need to sleep Alice," she placed her peach-colored palm gently on my forehead, "Sleep, Alice." My eyes suddenly grew heavy and my body relaxed.
I'm so tired all of a sudden, I thought. But I still have a million questions to ask. I looked at Frank who already appeared to be sleeping. I guess I'll have to wait until he wakes up. I blinked slowly.
"Sleep, Alice," she murmured, her voice growing distant as my eyes closed and I felt the pressure of her hand leave my face.


When I awoke a few hours later, my arm stung fiercely. I sat up and pushed the pillows behind my back to give me more support.
I inspected my arm. A thick, black thread woven through my skin itched and a yellow-brown paste slathered over my bruises smelled of vinegar.
I sighed and looked over at Frank who was sleeping peacefully with his leg in a sling that hung from the ceiling and his head wrapped in pearly-white gauze. A man with black streaked hair and stubble poking out around his chin sat in a leather cushioned chair next to him.
He looked up as he noticed my movement. I smiled weakly at him. "I'm Alice," I said as his blue eyes surveyed me, "What's your name?" He blinked.
"Is he going to be alright?" I asked, gesturing at Frank. The man nodded. "Oh good, he was pretty worse for wear at the hospital." The man sat, silent as I looked across the room.
"You look pretty worse for wear," he finally said after a long pause.
"So you can speak," I said and laughed, "No, I'm alright. Stings a little, but I'm alright."
"Good," he said as he stood, "I wouldn't want anything happening to the destroyer." He turned to leave.
"Wait," I blurted, "What does everyone mean when they call me the destroyer? I don't understand. I haven't, or won't, destroy anything."
"Frank should be the one to answer that," he said over his shoulder, "I can't."
"Can't or won't?" I asked, following him intently with my eyes as he walked towards the door.
He stopped and glanced back at me. "A little of both, actually," he replied seriously, then left.
I sighed and stared at the door he had left through. Why does no one seem to be answering my questions? I wondered. They say Frank will, but then when I ask him, he tells me to wait. I looked over at Frank sleeping soundlessly in his bed. Well, no more waiting.
I pushed the blankets back with my good arm and slipped my feet out.
"Where do you think you're going?" Phillis demanded from behind me. I gulped. "You weren't thinking of going and waking that poor man up from his sleep were you?"
I shook my head as Phillis walked into my sight. "Good. After all he's done to get you here and you try to wake him from the only descent sleep he's had in weeks." She spotted my guilty expression and sighed. "You want answers don't you?"
My eyes darted over to her. "Yes, actually. That's exactly what I want."
She walked towards me and lifted the blankets.
"Come on, back in." I grumbled and shoved my legs back under.
"Now, what were you going to ask him?" she asked as she sat down at the end of my bed, "And, please, one question at a time."
I nodded. "Okay. What does it mean when someone calls me the destroyer?"
Her shoulders sagged. "I thought you might start off with an easy one. Like, who are you, and where am I, not go straight into the thick of things." She shook her head. "Oh, well. You ask what the destroyer is? It's you. Your essence, your very being. You are the destroyer."
I threw up my hands, frustrated. "I know that! But what does it mean?"
"It means the difference between life and death," she said, raising her voice, "The Maces prophesied that a human girl, you, would die and be waken. She would be the undoing of the evil in this universe. The end of Lord Killith's reign of terror. You are supposed to destroy him. That is what it means."
But I don't even know who Lord Killith is, much less if I'm even capable of killing him. I glanced at Phillis.
"Why me? Why not someone else? A soldier or an assassin?"
"I do not know," she said, "That is something only The Maces can answer. Not even Frank knows." She looked away.
"Can I ask another question?" She nodded. "Are you human? Your body seems human, but I can't tell."
She laughed. "No, I'm not. You are the only human in this house. No matter how we look or speak, we're not human. We're called Shoens. It means beginning in the ancient language."
"But you resemble us so well," I bit my lip, "What makes you different?"
She picked at the threads on her dress. "We have special abilities. Certain things our bodies, our minds, and our souls can do. When you mix a Shoen woman with a Shoen man, their child is human. It would lack our special abilities, but nothing else."
"What kind of abilities?"

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