Darkness Gathering: Part Two
He carefully folded the letter and put it aside.
He would get some stamps and mail it tomorrow. He got up, thinking about going
outside to see if one of his friends was home. He walked down the corridor and
into the hall. He saw the front door, but he also saw something peculiar…another
letter had fallen through the letter slot and slid to the floor.
He picked it up, and read his name on the front.
He opened it and read it three times in quick succession.
I noticed you have answered my question. Good. Very good, indeed. You are
trying to find something. Its location is hidden from me, but this address might
provide some answers for you.
There followed a small address, somewhere in
The letter ended with Good Luck. Shine
was torn between shock at the letter writer already knowing his answer without
him mailing it, and amusement that he had wasted his stationary writing two
words that he wasn't even going to mail. Shine sighed, and headed for the door.
He walked outside, still staring in wonderment
at the letter. It was a beautiful summers day, but even gorgeous weather couldn't
distract him at the moment. What should he do now? Well, that was obvious. He
needed to visit this address and see if there was anything there that he might
But there was something the disturbed him. The
letter said that he was looking for something. He wasn't looking for anything
at the moment. Maybe they wanted him to think deeply. What did he really want
to find, above all other things?
The answer was so clear he was surprised that
it had taken him this long to guess. The dreams he had been having came to the
surface of his mind. He remembered the door, the pound, and the darkness. What
did he want to find?
"My brother," Shine said, aloud, "My brother."
And with that he began to walk, first this way,
then the other. He was trying to find the street sign that matched the street
on the address. Two streets down, then three. Shine still hadn't found it. When
he did, he realized it was five streets down and two over. He walked along it,
wearily. It was a strange part of the neighborhood.
He looked for a house marked with the numbers
22475. He found the house, at last, to discover that this house was small and
well-kept looking. He walked slowly up the steps and knocked on the front door.
While he waited, he double checked the address and looked around. It took the
house owner a long time to answer, until Shine was sure they weren't home. But
A young neopet owner, looking about fourteen,
said, "Umm…who are you exactly?" Shine gave her his name, and she welcomed him
into the house. It was tidy, but small. Despite its size, it had the most wonderful
blue furniture with yellow stars on it. Just like me, Shine thought.
"I don't keep Neopets myself," She said, "That's
why I let you in. I hardly ever get to talk to one." Shine had thought she was
I neopet owner, but now he supposed he was wrong. "What do you need, Shine?
Are you lost or something?" She pulled of her jacket, and Shine gasped, softly
and in awe.
She was plainly a faerie. Small, yellow wings
that she had tucked carefully under her jacket were revealed. So that was why
she didn't keep Neopets. Faeries never did. She was young, though, to be a faerie.
Shine guessed she was in training. She also looked like a light faerie because
her wings and clothes were yellow.
"You caught me at a bad time. I was crystal gazing,"
she said, and then smiled. Then repeated her question.
Shine replied, "I came for answers. I was told
to come to this address." He showed her the letter. She stopped and stared at
the letter when she saw it.
"And what question did she ask?" she said.
"She asked me if Ghosts could still cry," Shine
said. The girl sat down at her table and motioned for Shine to do the same opposite
her. Shine obeyed. "My name is Aurora, and I am a light faerie in training."
Shine had guessed right. "And I know Sirens Desire, too. She wrote this, didn't
she?" Shine nodded.
"It's a warning. She does this. It means that
whatever your looking for is gone, but all hope is not lost." Shine blinked.
It was then he noticed a tear roll down his cheek. "What were you looking for?"
Shine said, shakily, tears still streaming, "My
She smiled and said in an almost business-like
way, "Well, that's good then. Now I know exactly what she means." Shine stared.
How could this be good? "It means that your brother has died, but you could
probably still find him somewhere. She wouldn't have told you to come to me
if there was no hope."
Shine smiled. This made sense. Still, his happiness
did not last long. Four of her words were just now starting to sink in.
"Your brother has died."
Aurora seemed to realize what she said and what
it meant to Shine. She almost instantly changed her buisness-like look to a
horror-struck, devastated one. "…I'm sorry," she mumbled.
Shine stood up trying to keep himself under control.
He pretended to be straightening his collar to give him an excuse to look down,
so Aurora didn't see him crying. All his efforts were in vain, however, because
shortly after he sobbed loudly. Then, feeling it was useless to hide his despair
any longer, sniffed.
"Oh, don't!" sighed Aurora. "The last thing you
need is to cry!" She had plainly no idea how to handle the situation. She stood
uneasily on the spot as Shine wept, now silently, tears dripping onto her floor.
"Er…Shall I make a cup of tea?" she asked. Shine looked up, startled. She ran
into the kitchen to begin brewing.
After the kettle was on the stove she said, "Umm…I
need to do some quick crystal gazing. I've had a thought. Will you wait right
here? Call me when the tea is ready." She got up and left Shine alone in the
He picked up the letter from the table and looked
down at it. Now that he read it again, he thought to himself that the letter
sounded hopeful, not sympathetic. He sat on the couch, re-reading the letter
as intently as his favorite books. He let his mind wander until the silence
was desperately broken. By the kettle whistling and Aurora bursting into the
room yelling. "Aha, I knew it! I just knew it!"
"You knew what?" Shine inquired, "Calm down,
you're not making any sense!" The kettle whistled shrilly. "And will you get
that kettle off the stove. Please," he added, when she didn't heed him. She
went to get the tea off the stove, but she was not in the mood for tea anymore.
"When I went Crystal gazing, I just couldn't
take my thoughts off you. Naturally, my orb showed me something that related
to you…I peered and I saw…a ghostly figure." She ended this pronouncement dreamily
and, to Shine, rather creepily, too.
"Great, but what's this got to do with me?"
"I don't know, Shine. I have yet to figure it
out. Though I have my suspicions. I believe that you should look for your brother
"But," sputtered Shine, "you said he died."
"Maybe he didn't. What I saw in my crystal ball
made we think he was still alive…in some form or another. Who knows? Now, I
suggest you go home, get some sleep and leave first thing in the morning." And
with that, she lead him to her door, shoved a cup of tea in his hands and turned
to go do other things.
Shine's head was swimming. He had many things
he'd like to ask Aurora. His long list included things like 'How about a good-bye'
and 'Why give me tea now?' But there were two questions he wanted answered above
all others. Where was Blase and was he alive?
Slowly, he made his way home. He couldn't believe
what was happening. He drank his tea as he walked, but had no way to return
the cup once he had finished. He just took it home and set it on the counter
to be washed. When he walked in Harmony just said, "Hello Shine. Off to your
"Yes," was Shine's dull response.
"Well, clean it!" said Harmony. "It looks like
"That's because it is a mess!" Shine yelled back
as he shut his door.
When he entered, the first thing he did was trip
over a baseball bat. "Maybe, she's right," he said to himself, "It does need
to be straightened up a little, doesn't it." This was not the time. First, he
set the letter down on his dresser. Then, he worked around his almost ankle-deep
mess and packed as best he could. A few collars, some food that he stole from
the fridge, his petpet (who angrily protested to being shoved into the bag)
and a few other things. He hung the bag on the edge of his bed and met Harmony
To be continued...