Lone Oak

Lone Oak, a northeastern town in New England USA with a lot of stories to tell. Nobody could have imagined any truth was behind them.

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1. Prologue- An Ending for the Best

Agatha arose from her much needed sleep to the sound of someone running up the stairs. Her head was pounding, her eyes still adjusting to the darkened room left stuffy and cold after the fire died out sometime in the early morning hours. Agatha’s head snapped towards the door as it burst open with a loud bang. “Edith don’t you know how to knock” Agatha yelled. She then massaged her head as the pounding morning headache only grew worse with the yelling and loud noises. “We have to go” Edith said sternly, a curly lock of black hair falling in front of her face as she stood bent over the bed.

              Agatha, awake now said “I don’t think I quite understand this level of madness, barging into ones room like that.” Edith’s eyes narrowing now said aggressively “get up and get dressed or you are going to die.” Agatha, sitting up now said “Edith are you threatening me?” Edith leaned in close and said “we have lost control.” Before Agatha could say another word Edith ran out of the room and back down the stairway.

              Agatha found herself staring into a beam of light that made its way through an opening in the closed curtains. She was watching the dust and ash swirl, mesmerized by the movements. She then started to picture hundreds of angry townsfolk with weapons charging at her home which snapped her out of her daydream with a gasp. Throwing the covers off of her body she jumped out of bed. In a state of frantic rush she began sliding out of her cream colored night gown letting it gently fall to the floor.

              Agatha was a very pretty woman, twenty three years old with long golden red hair that seemed to sparkle in the light as she opened the curtains. She opened her closet door already having a dress in mind, a black dress to match her black overcoat. A multitude of moths dispersed from her closet as she snatched the dress. She stumbled back and threw the dress on the floor trying to evade the oncoming swarm of dusty insects. The moths, taking no interest in her proceded to the window and ceiling while she reached for the dress once again. Holding it up to the light revealed holes in the dress created by the invasive; closet dwelling insects that had given her so much trouble in the past. She smirked and said “well, I guess being what these drones call a witch and wearing a black dress is all too appropriate anyways.”

              Once again browsing the closet she found a green dress with gold trim that the moths had not yet touched. She put it on and stood in front of the mirror smiling with confidence. It was at this point that Edith barged in and shouted “Agatha! Some sense of urgency please we don’t have much time!” Agatha, rushing for her the few items she held dear to her was slightly embarrassed that she could allow such an event to slip her mind. Putting on her pendant and ring she ran downstairs.

              Edith, scrambling around the well stocked kitchen stuffing herbs into a bag looked at Agatha and as she caught her breath and asked “now darling, are you ready?” Agatha, keeping eye contact asked “what about the others”. Edith said “they are meeting us in the valley of the pines.” This reassured Agatha a little because leaving her home behind was one thing, but those she cared about was another.

              Outside the house was a horse and buggy, the buggy was black with gold trim, inside it was a sea of burgundy cloth. Agatha and Edith scrambled into the buggy as the driver grabbed the reins. As the buggy pulled away Agatha took one last look at her home whilst it disappeared between the trees. Little did they know that running away would save their own lives but doom many others. The year was sixteen eighty-nine, the location- Salem Massachusetts.

              One would think that a valley of pine trees in the north eastern region of America would not be given much thought, they are about as common as ants in an ant farm. However this one got its name from its very tall pines so dense no room was left for much else. Edith always loved to come out here whenever she wanted to conduct an experiment or even just to be alone. This wasn’t exactly a stupid idea, the valley was so far out that the townsfolk seldom came here. As the buggy left the main gravel road and onto the pine needle covered dirt trail Edith began to smile. Being late fall the temperature had dropped but this didn’t seem to bother her. She still reached for the leather strap holding the window up and loosened it a bit, allowing the polished wood frame of the glass window to slide down just a few inches. Edith, closing her eyes and inhaling deeply said “you smell that? That is the best smell on earth, I’m going to miss this most of all.”

              After an hour of slowly lumbering along the dirt path through the pines they had finally reached their destination, a clearing. Agatha and Edith, both cold and poorly dressed stepped out of the buggy. Edith was immediately approached and greeted by a man named Malik. His father was a troll in Scandinavia and his mother a human. This meant Malik was a hybrid, but one of the few creatures that appeared normal enough to coexist with humans without them knowing he was anything more than an unattractive man. He was tall, bald and had a rough lumpy face. Malik was also very strong, he could lift a four hundred pound stone without a problem. Despite his strength Malik wouldn’t so much as hurt a fly. He was also very crafty and had a great respect for nature and all living things. He made use of every last part of any animal he killed. His jacket was made of fur from a brown bear, on his thick brown leather belt sat a knife with a bone handle sheathed in a leather holster. He wore black baggy pants tucked into brown boots almost reaching his knees. Despite living mostly off the land his green wool shirt was still an unstained green.

              Malik hugged both Edith and Agatha in one massive scoop of his arms, lifting them off the ground a little as he did. Edith, squinting her face after all the air in her lungs had been successfully squeezed out of her said somewhat strained “Malik! We really have to work on your hugging skills.” Malik let go and said “sorry mam, I’m so terribly sorry. It is just such a relief to see you.” Agatha gazed upon the crowd of creatures and hybrids. She counted about thirty in total, and it may have been less because the crowd was moving a little. She looked at Malik and asked “Malik, am I wrong or are we missing at least a third of our people.” Malik hung his head and said “Killed off on the northern trail, we all took different paths but they left too late and the towns folk; they are just too strong for some of us.” Agatha now with eyes beginning to water hugged Malik with a firm grip and buried her head in his fur jacket. Malik gently hugged her and said “you are cold young one, let me get you a fur jacket. I have made plenty, it will be alright now.”

              While Agatha and Malik walked to his old wagon to find warmer clothing Edith climbed up on top of the black buggy that she had arrived in. Hands on her hips and thumbs tucked into her thick leather belt she proclaimed “today has been an unfortunate day. We have lost many we have loved and worked with for a very long time. But do not let our loved ones passing’s be for nothing. We are still two thirds in numbers. I know you are all afraid of the angry burning mob of townsfolk that are heading our way as we speak. I am to, more so because we cannot defend ourselves with magic of any kind or we will gain the attention of more than Salem. But now is not the time to give up, its time to form a new home. You Melanie, just because you are a wraith does that make you evil?” Melanie’s head could be seen shaking left to right under her purple hood. “And you Sesquin, an elf. Does this mean that you use your skills in magic for evil and deserve to die?” Sesquin shaking his head said “no mam, I could never imagine doing such a thing!” Edith continued “Exactly, you see everyone? We are not evil; but these humans- they don’t understand that. They are a young race of beings and lock their doors at night fearing of what lurks in the night. And who can blame them for such an act as to hunt us down and take our lives! How many of our brothers and sisters, both pure and impure have slaughtered, cursed and tortured these young and unknowing beings. The things so many beings outside of our group are doing is exactly why we have no place here anymore. It is time everyone, it is time for us to build our own home. Go north, seek a place far from civilization and build! We must keep doing exactly what we always have; using our powers for good and taking in anyone that shows potential along the way. I don’t want to stop doing what we are doing, I want to make it better. Who’s with me!” The entirety of the crowd chanted in approval. Edith, looking at the crowd with piercing eyes said “Then we head north! And we make a life for our family that we could never have even dreamed of!”

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