Shadowfall Series: Book 2 Relight

It is five years later after the purification of the Mother. Anisa is back with her army and is more powerful than ever. But so is Kate and her group. The group comes back together in hopes of stopping Anisa. But can they get to her in her new city of Prentice? And how will the village of Ulmitia hold up against the Shadow stragglers?

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2. 1. A Little Visit

Ulmitia was a small quiet little town, but a nice place to live. In the past three months I had been here, I've been treated nothing but nice. The society was loving and caring and their ruler was so sweet it was painful at times. How could someone exist? But it was her looks that made it all the more sweeter. She was a beautiful woman, the Mother. But she was married and had a family. The whole village knew of the two, it was no mystery. And the stories were told over and over. The children loved to hear the sweet love story of Mother Nature and Luneth Shadow.

Luneth had been a warrior of the village, one of the best. He had grown up here all his life, living with his parents and two younger siblings, Zack and Amy. Amy was a prophetess and was able to see the future. She had been killed by the Shadows when the Army took over. Zack and Luneth quickly made their escape. Luneth's name changed; he was unworthy to hold such a name after this whole thing, he became Vaann. Vaann Shadow. He dyed his hair black and ended up blind in one eye. He was, and is, amazing with a bow and arrow. Like I said, the best warrior in the village.

Kate was a different story. I'd heard so many different stories, but this seemed the most accurate. Kate was the daughter of Mother Nature, the original Mother Nature. Her sister Anisa was the ruler of Prentice, was not only her sister, but her other half. The Mother had separated Anisa and Kate at birth; one would be of a greater power. Only one could become the new Mother. So over the path of their sixteen years, they learned all the responsibilities and skills to be the new Mother. It became a competition to the girls. One would have to take over, the other would render herself useless. Kate ran away not wanting to kill the humans the way the Mother did. She eventually met up with her group she called her family who became her best friends. And of course, she slowly began to fall for the young warrior formerly known as Luneth.

Luneth promised he would not fall for the blonde, he wouldnt allow himself to get so attached to the girl. It would hurt later. So instead he began to plan. Ideas ran through his head and finally he came up with an idea. He would pretend to go to the other side and become evil. Get all the inside information before passing it onto the group. Defeat them all from the inside out. Just as Kate knew, she didnt give up on Vaann. She knew he would never actually do something like this, betray the group. She trusted him. Vaann gave her his necklace, a symbol of his love. Whoever held the necklace held a bond. A bond to save the world as well as keep Kate close.

Together, the group defeated the Mother and purified her. She sent the world back into its normal state, which was a sight to see. The day that happened was one of the best. I remember looking out over a ruined lake, taking in the view of the ragged cabin I had once called my home. I imagined my daughter and my wife, playing together in the tall grass. Now it was just dead. I felt the tears sting my eyes. I remember when my daughter went limp in my loves arms. She sobbed for so long before we made our get away. And then the Shadows. As I stared over the sight, I growled. I remember how they tore her apart, how she screamed. How I didnt help. How she slipped away forever.

And suddenly the world shifted in its tracks. The ground began to shake and there was a burst of color. The grass began to turn green, the lake flooding back to its sparkling blue it used to be. I held my breath, amazed at the sight. My heart gave a squeeze. I didnt have my family here to be with me. To take in the sight. To know it would be okay. Hope had returned. But I was alone.

That was when I stumbled upon Ulmitia. When I learned the stories of the Mother and Luneth. And I met them. Kate was so gentle and patient, so young. How had such young children saved us all? Vaann welcomed me to the village asking me to stay and enjoy the perks of Ulmitia during the rebuild. I stayed to help in the rebuild and was excited to see how much had come out of it. Kate had allowed me to stay in the base and become one of her guards. It was a tough job but a good one. It was sometimes difficult to keep up with. My post was always outside the walls, making sure nothing got past the walls and into the village.

"Rorek?" A soft bell like voice, calling my attention from the two tiny children I had been watching. I glanced up to the emotionless face that was standing over me. I stood and wiped off my pants and observed her. Her pale blonde hair fell around her face, making her bright blue eyes pop. "The Mother dismisses you to your post. She gives her thanks for watching the kids."

I nodded, "Yes, Lyllina." I said fisting my hand over my heart. She looked to where Nilah was looking at her and smiled just a bit. Nilah's eyes flashed to me, waving a tiny bye-bye. "Bye, Nilah." I said patting her head. I smiled to her brother. "Be good, Cain."

Cain smirked at me from where he was shaping a small stick into a sharpened fine point. The teachings of Vaann no doubt. "I will, Mister Rorek!"

And with that I stood and parted from the tiny group. I walked away from the garden and toward the main part of the village where the great fountain stood. It's sparkling water gave me its usual greeting. I stopped to stare at my reflection, at the pale stranger staring back. Since those many years ago, I hardly recognized myself. My once neat black hair was now a wild disarray, becoming rather shaggy. My eyes used to be so calm in their forest green state. Now they were wild like that of a rabid animal. I pushed my hair out of my face as I began walked past the fountain and toward the tree line that seperated us from the shadows. As usual, I began my rounds.

I started at the farthest wall and walked parallel. Nothing ever seemed to be here, I didnt see any problem. And the Mother never gave me any news of someone-or something-breaking into the village. She kept her secrets under a lock and key. It made no sense. Why be a ruler and keep everything from your people? It would just create more panic later.

A deep snarling froze me in my tracks. "Hello...?" I called glancing around carefully. I heard no answer. Maybe I was hearing things? I gripped the handle of my sword, just in case. But I was only drowned in silence. I pulled my hand away and began walking in my circles again. I was lost in thought again when the snarling started again. I spun around to scan the trees. The slightest movement caught my eye. I ripped my sword from its sheath, growling between my teeth, "Come out! I know you're there!"

There was no answer.

"I-I mean it!" When there was yet again no answer, I sighed and began my patrol again, not bothering to put the sword away. I had to be imagining things.

A great roaring sounded in my ear then. I didnt have time to spin around before I felt claws dig into my back, scratching me from my right shoulder to my left. Whatever it was had to be huge. I could feel the warm liquid running down my back. When I spun around I almost collapsed. The thing was as big as a bear! It's legs were bent backwards like an ostrich, but short like a monkeys with bird like feet, talons and all. Its arms were like a gorilla, making its chest and shoulders huge. Its face was that of a lizard. Razor sharp teeth stained blood red with eyes as white as paper. It slashed at me again, but this time I had a chance to jump away.

It sped at me again, slamming into me with its large shoulders. I fell to the ground and managed to roll back onto my feet. When it charged me again, I slashed my sword at it, managing to leave a deep gash down its arm, producing a black ichor to run out of the creature.

This is what the Mother called a Shadow.

The Shadow Army.

I spun on my heel to run toward one of the trees, yanking myself up into the branches. It stared at me in anger. Of course it couldnt come up. It was too large. It paced around the bottom of the tree watching me with its dead eyes, snarling all the while. In my head I was trying to devise a plan. Maybe if I hopped from tree to tree and made my escape. No, then it would follow me to the village. Maybe if I could get it back outside the wall and disappear. No, I didnt know the weak points of the wall, how could I get in or out? The only way seemed to kill it. But how? It was twice my size.

I stared down at the thing as it snarled again. I smirked and let myself fall from the tree, holding the sword straight down. It screeched when the blade landed straight in its back, causing a strange tearing sound. It began to thrash like a wild bull, attempting to throw me-and my sword-off. It bucked one last time and I fell to the ground, tearing my sword with me. It shook its head before its eyes landed back on me. I gasped and jumped up as it began to charge me roaring, leaving a line of red blood. I felt its teeth sink into my arm and I screamed out in agony. In a panic I began to hit it in the head, shoulder, chest, eyes, anywhere that was within reach. It was latched on tight and wouldnt let go. I shuddered against the pain and grabbed my sword with my other hand before shoving it down harshly into the creatures forehead. It released with a screech and dropped to the ground, twitching before it poofed into dust.

I sat there staring in shock. Where had that thing come from?

"What do we have here?" A bell like voice asked making me jump up in shock.

Before me stood a woman who stood a few inches taller than myself. Her skin was so pale, unnatural pale, whiter than the color of paper. You could see her veins through her skin, almost like it was translucent. Her dark hair fell down around her face like a black veil, making her blood red eyes stand out. I would have said she was albino if she didnt look like a twisted creature from a child's nightmare. Or maybe a nightmare of my own. Her face resembled a devilish version of our Mother Nature.

"Who are you? You arent the Mother..."
"No, I am her Sister. Anisa Thorne." She smiled to me making me more cautious. Her teeth looked like they had been sharpened with a knife.

"Her last name is Shadow."

"Only because she married that worthless man-" She cut off pinching the bridge of her nose. "I am well aware my sister has now been married off to a warrior named Luneth Shadow. But she used to be my dear sister, Katelynn Thorne."

I nodded at her. I guess that made sense. "Why are you here?" I asked her.

Her smile stretched from ear to ear, something strange. "I am here to speak to you, young Rorek. What else?" She held out a hand to me.

"H-How do you know my name?" I said taking a step back.

"Please, darling. I am Kate's sister. What she knows, I know. I will explain. Walk with me?" She asked beckoning me closer. I took a hesitant step toward her. She turned on her heels quickly and so gracefully that it seemed almost alien. The way she moved was just...of. I followed behind her, feeling oddly pulled toward this woman. "Why are you here?"

I stopped short. "Why am I here? What?" She just nodded to me staring straight ahead as she walked us around the perimeter of the walls of the village. "Well, ma'am.... it's my job."

"Don't call me ma'am!" She suddenly screeched turning her feiry eyes on me, looking rather crazy. Her hair flung out around her and she bared her sharp teeth on me. "Do I look old to you?!"

I held my hands up backing away. "No! No, its just to show respect! I would never be so rude as to call you old!"

"Good," she growled, turning back. "Excuse me, I apologize." She said with a sweet smile. "I lost my head for a second there."

"Does that happen a lot lately?" I asked quietly, letting my muscles relax. I felt my fingers twitch toward my knife.

"Yes, yes it does." She said giving me a blank look. Her eyes followed my hand and she moved with such speed that I gasped. She was holding my knife in her hand, examining the blade between her fingers. "You dont need this, child. I wasnt planning on killing you. If I wanted you dead, you wouldnt even have had the chance to blink. In fact, I am doing just the opposite of killing you. I am saving you."

"What do you mean?" I asked warily.

"The Mother is plotting against the humans. Why do you think she made such a large village filled with mutants? The Rebelion is beginning." She said bringing her eyes down to me. Her tone was so serious. I was suspcious. Why should I believe her? The Mother has done nothing but help me.

"You're wrong. The Mother is a fine woman with only good in her heart."

"She is tainted!" She said bringing her hands to my chest. She was only inches away now. "Dont you see? She is creating a barrior between the humans and mutants. She wants to kill of humans, make a superior race of beings. She wants all the humans dead!"

As I stared into her eyes, something seemed to click. The wheels in my head turned and I knew exactly what she meant. The Mother was evil. Anisa was my savior.

"Come back to Prentice with me," she begged breathlessly. "Let me save you. Become one with me."

I felt light headed and my brain was so fogged. She grasped my shoulders, staring into my face as I blinked trying to rid my head of her words. But it was no use. She was winning. I was being consumed. "I-I.... Prentice. Yes. My home is Prentice. You are my Queen," I felt my muscles bend me into a bow without my command. I had lost.

Prentice is your home. Your Queen is your life. You live by her rules now....

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