speculative visionscience fiction and fantasy

Thaia/ Queen of the Ljosalfars--REVISED

Share your genre short stories with our readers and get feedback on your work.

Moderators: Bmat, Qray

    Bookmark and Share

Thaia/ Queen of the Ljosalfars--REVISED

Postby Stephanie » Mon Dec 11, 2006 11:48 am

Part One

Long, long ago before even the race of man Ymir, the first great Frost Giant had been imprisoned. Deep in the Northern ice capes of Almalgla Ymir laid, frozen in time. Incased in ice and magic by a powerful Ljosalfar Sorceress by the name of Thaia. Exhausted from the centuries of bloodshed the mighty Queen fell to the cold ground. The giant watched from his tomb as she took her last breath. Ymir, closed his eyes as the last of the Queens’ magic sent him into a deep sleep. The battle came to a stand still, peace ran throughout all lands as life began to breathe once more. For one hundred years the giant slept, and peace ran throughout the Universe.
Until destiny stepped in as a fire breathing dragon. The name of the evil tempered dragon had been none other than Muspel. She had perched herself on an icy shelf just above the giant imprisoned body. Muspel, too tired to continue on her journey settled down and slept. The glacier below the dragon began to melt slowly. So sound of a sleep, the dragon Muspel unknowingly unleashed an immense amount of heat. With each hot exhale of her breath the dragon brought the sleeping giant closer to life, once more. The ice melted away and reveled Ymir, the great Frost Giant. He slept peacefully in his melted tomb, surrounded by other frost giants. From his sleep Ymir had fathered his children and started the rebirth of giants. From his leg’s Ymir sprang identical twin sons’ Abbal and Caenxe. Under his arm pit Ymir fathered yet another set of twins. The second set, defiantly were not identical. One, a six headed son named Thrudgelmír and the other child whom would be his only daughter Helga.
Slowly the race of giants would recover with the help and support of Domhnull Dubh, known to all as belonging to the devils race. Domhnull had heard of the giants release, as had the rest. Ymirs destruction rapidly increased, a terrible shadow once again covered the lands of magic. Domhnull bestrode his power onto the giant and helped Ymir enter the Ljosalfars world. The evil little devil Domhnull loved the thought of excitement in the boring worlds again. Domhnull eagerly aided Ymir in the giants’ quest for a single Ljosalfar, Thaia. Blood once more stained the lush moors of the world, stained red by fallen Ljosalfars.
After twenty years of fighting, both sides had lost many. Both sides equally at risk of failing to meet their goal. Ymir heard on the wind, one bloody night, a secret about himself. It was a warning of what was to come. Ymir, unable to sleep on one windy night traveled to the end of the thousand universes. He needed to find the source of the whispers . . . the source of the warnings. He found it high on a frozen icy cliff. It was an ice dragon by the name of Insa, the dragon of Prophets. The dragons’ size matched his own, Ymir noted as he scanned the icy blue hardness of the skin. Ymir searched for a weak point, he took special note of the dragons menacing looking tail. The thick tail was covered with massive icy spears, sharpened by Insa. The dragon told Ymir she knew of his demise. Insa asked if he cared to know what she knew would come to be.
"No one ever has changed their preordained destiny!" Insa hissed at Ymir. The giant insisted she tell him his future. The dragon smiled, she had another warning for him first.
"You must withstand the cold harshness of my breath as I tell to you of the prophecy. No one has ever lasted long enough to hear the end of my tales. Let alone the ability to change the course of their future. So careful your destiny has already been laid out by the Gods! Who are you to change it? Most likely your life will end here . . . is it worth the risk giant? Could it be that I know I am your demise? Have I lured you here to your death? I could be sending you back into your prison of ice. Do you have so much faith in your strength?" The dragon waited for an answer. Ymir sat and thought about his chances of survival, he shook his head up and down slowly.
The dragon opened her mouth and took a deep, deep breath. Words mixed with a lethal attack of daggers, ice, snow, and freezing rain hit the giant head on. Ymir braced himself against the abuse. He shook the ice off his body every so often before it in cased him.
"The Queen of the Ljosalfars she is about to return. The great Queen will come seek you where you dig . . . and drag you through the flames of hell! The Great Kiama will hunt you down! She will bleed you dry, and watch as your body melts into the sea. The Great Frost Giant Ymir will fall, never again to rise. Be mindful of your obsessions! They will keep you blind. Thaia will come, and soon you will see! She will burn with the fire of an ancient flame, a very powerful essence-- hot and out of your control. This little Queen is descended to become the most powerful of you all, and it will be by the very breath in your cold chest. Deeper you will watch the blade of life as it plunges into you. She will drive the cold magic into your core and steal your soul. Helpless to stop the pain, your life will slip away. Look away giant for a vision of your flower, and your greatest traitor will only haunt your descent down below. They will smile as you struggle to take your last dying breath. She will turn on you this time it will be greatly different. She will find love and not in just a male . . . but in a child . . . a very special . . . a powerful child!" Insa said at an unbearably slow speed. Finally the dragon closed her mouth and Ymir feel to the ground, almost a solid chunk of ice. Looking up he saw the dragon had disappeared leaving him there to die.
"If I plan this correctly, Thaia could be mine!" Ymir said to himself as he realized the queen had not as of yet been reborn, he still had time to plan!

Chapter One
Thaia the Prophecy

Thirty-one years later, tuck hidden away with the humans:

It had always been the same dream. Always lost as she searched desperately for something that she did not know. Thaia seemed unable to completely open her eyes. Clumsily she clutched onto whatever her shaking hands could find. Thaia touched a cold damp stone wall in what appeared to be an over grown jungle. She struggled greatly, it seemed with some kind of collar around her neck, strangling her. A warm liquid flowed through her veins, distorting her thoughts. Thaia shook her head trying to clear her murky mind. She felt as if the fast-moving void fallowing her, ever so closely, would finally swallow her. With one hand she searched her surrounds, with the other she tried to keep the collar from tightening around her throat. Thaia could hear a young woman, or even perhaps a child in the distance scream for help.
Scared Thaia pressed on, she moved toward the scream. Every nerve in her body told her to run the other way! The dream then would flood with a brilliant white light. She could hear even more screams of pain in its brilliance. Thaia found herself surprised by the hatred that radiated from the light. Overwhelmed she took a couple of steps back and stumbled over something big in her path. The ground seemed to move under the force of her fall. Thaia jumped back on her feet to stand shaking in fear. Slowly she turned to look down at the object in her way. It was . . . nothing . . . a big void of . . . anything. The scream now drew closer, so close Thaia could feel the breath on the back of her neck, giving her goose bumps!
"Run." Thaia heard on the wind, it swirled down cross her face to each side of her ears. "Run." Transfixed Thaia turned to search for the source of the scream. White light flooded every inch of her vision!
"Run Thaia." Again Thaia turned to see "the nothing” the voice seemed to come from it. Thaia drew herself closer to the swirling mass of blackness. Still she couldn't open her eyes, making her fear soar. Just as the fear began to seize her mind, a strange sensation ran up and down her body! She closed her eyes, and found to her surprise that she could see everything as if her eyes had been opened. She gasped as her heart jump into her throat. She could see Parkers torn and bloodied body . . . she could see her husband's death. With a flash Parker was gone, the void had returned. Thaia moved closer, she needed to see! As she did, Thaia could see a different face. Swirling in the black mass stared back an old and familiar face . . . Michael! Her first true love. Michael moved for her, he grabbed her arms. Fear caught in her chest making her labor for each breath she took. Thaia all of the sudden felt as if she had been sucked through a small tube. Arms pulled her through time and space. Trapped by a man she had not seen in years. Michael opened his arms to let her go. Thaia fell uncontrollably toward the earth! Her heart pumped fear throughout her body. Closing her eyes Thaia tried to wake herself from the nightmare, but could not! The dream seemed too real for her. It held to strong of a hold on her! Thaia finally gave up hope of waking and opened her eyes. The closer to earth she fell the slower her speed became until she floated down toward the strange brightly shining blue rivers. The rivers sat nestled in the protection of a thick Forest. She floated further down the wind as she closed her eyes once more. The feel of tranquillity, and peace flooded all of her senses. Thaia felt her feet touch a sold surface she opened her eyes. It took a couple of seconds for them to adjust to the darkness. She now stood in front of her mothers old antique mirror. Ominously it hung in the old families house!
"Mom, wake up. Mom, are you ok?" Thaia felt a hand grab hold of her shoulders and shook her gently. For an instant, Thaia hesitated at the sound of her daughter drawing her back to life. Not sure to trust the safety of her voice, Thaia fought at the call. Slowly she began to open her eyes. Thaia focused on Kaylee and her smiling face. A sense of peace rushed through her as she gazed at her beautiful eight years old baby. Big green eyes stared down at her. Kaylee could not help but to look at her mother with concern. She after all had the look of a crazy woman. Kaylee secretly hoped her mother would at least find a hat or something! Thaia raised her hand to caress Kaylees face with love.
"Bad dream." Was all Thaia could say? Kaylee didn't need Thaia to tell her what her dreams consisted of, she already knew!
"You better get up Mom it is your turn to take everyone to school, car-pole, remember?" Kaylee said as she jumped off the bed. Thaia could see that she had her uniform on and was ready to go.
"Why did you let me sleep so long Kay?" Thaia said as she threw her blankets off.
"Because I could hear you all night, what were you dreaming about?" Kaylee asked even though she could guess what kept her mother up at night. Thaia stopped and turned to Kaylee. How could she talk to her innocent child about this? Kaylee was her best friend, and all Thaia hade left! Kaylee was too young for the truth of life, and hurt of life!
"Nothing. I can't remember . . . will you make sure to finish getting ready please?" Thaia did not want to shut Kaylee out, but did not have a clue how not to.
"Mom, are you going to talk about this? I. . . miss him to you know!" Kaylee said in a little voice and left the room. Thaia still holding her shirt in her hands, slowly she sank to the floor. The sharp pain of her heart threatened to come out as tears filled her eyes. Kaylees words hit her like a brick in the chest. Of course Kaylee missed her father Thaia thought, but she still could not bring her self to talk about it. The accident had only been three months before, not long ago at all! Thaia had buried Parker what seemed like only yesterday! He had been on his way home from work in a late February evening. A drunk driver crossed the median and struck him head on. He felt no pain . . . died instantly. Parker had been ejected from the family car. With a sad laugh Thaia pulled her shirt over her head and made her way down the stairs.
After the kids had been dropped off at school Thaia decided that she would make this a day of rest! She had not had one since the accident. Siting on the couch, Thaia just stared at the blank TV not knowing what to do with . . . well anything. Parker always had control of the remote. Watching TV just didn't seem right without him. What now . . . what now, she thought letting her mind drift back to the dream. Thaia could see Parkers mangled body looking up at her with fear.
"Run Thaia. " Was all she could hear. The scream seemed to be far off in the distance once more. With a slight realization Thaia found herself asleep. In the dream once more, she found it different. This time her eyes were open, she could see. Thaia could see the horrible death of her husband again, his mangled body under their S.U.V..
"Thaia, run." Came from the mangled mess of human and machine.
"Run." With a flash she had been whisked away to some other place. A place she had not been. Trees everywhere, it was dark. Strange voices called her name from beyond the light.
"Thaia, come to me!" Said a horrible raspy voice just in front of her.
"Thaia we have found you, now you must come with me." She saw a truly evil creature emerge through the darkness. He stood about ten feet tall with what seemed to be six heads. The monster had a child in his grasp, he repeated.
"Thaia, come to me." A voice now screamed in her head as the creature moved closer to her.
"Thaia, we have found you! Now come with me my queen, Ymir awaits." The giant stept for ward throwing a small body to the ground. A scream of fear and pain pierced the night. Thaia moved closer to the body her breathing stopped. The scream it came from . . . Kaylee! Kaylee lay on the ground in fear and pain. Panic-stricken Thaia ran for her child.
"NO . . . you can't have her! YOU CAN"T HAVE HER!" Was all Thaia could get out before they disappeared into the night.

Thaias eyes flew open in the middle of the dream she sat up on the couch. Her ears strained at a taping sound on the windows, it was raining outside. In truth she had thought the monsters from her dream had some how fallowed her home, she listened closely. Thaia struggled to come back to her senses. The dream seemed so real to her! Thaia did not move she was too scared. Scared that it had been more than just a dream, again. Thaia feared it had been another warning, this time for Kaylee. For years Thaia had a dream of Parkers death. She never thought too much about the dreams! Over, and over she would push them out of her mind. Until about three months before his death. The dreams returned almost every night, they gave her no peace! How could she have known that they would come true. Maybe, she had always thought, if she had tried to understand them more? Could she have seen more? Maybe that early February morning she would not have kissed Parker good bye, never to see him whole again. Thaias mind raced trying to remember the entire dream, or whatever it was. Trapped in her own mind she didn't hear the door bell, nor did she hear someone walk into her house!
"Excuse me, but I rang and no one answered! I am sorry for walking in . . . Hello Mrs. Kendslee . . . are you ok?" Asked the stranger, she stood just inside the door. Still, lost in her own world Thaia trailed off with.
" Yes." Then as if cold water had been thrown in her face, she realized for the first time someone stood inside the front door.
"I am sorry . . . can I help yo . . . ?"
"I am with the Law offices of Keenly and Martin. I am here ab . . . " Started the woman rudely, and with attitude as she cut Thaia off.
"I told Mr. Keenly I would contact him when I was ready to deal with my late husbands’ Will!" Thaia stated with just as much rudeness, and attitude as the strangely familiar stranger standing awkwardly in her house! Thaia instantly felt an intense animosity toward the woman for unknown reasons. The stranger gave a nervous giggle before continuing.
"Yes of course Mrs.Kendslee. Only, my reason for my being here, concerns your mother."
Confused Thaia stared at the woman trying to figure out where she had seen her from. Something gave Thaia the impression she had not liked her at all! Stunned she stared dumbfounded, not sure what to say as the woman stared back at her.
"Mrs. Kendslee, I understand your confusion, maybe this may clear everything up." The woman handed Thaia a sealed envelope with her mothers writing on it. Thaia confused looked up from the envelope to the woman, she . . . was gone! Thaia ran out of the door into the rain in search. She could see no sign of the rude woman! Confused she ran inside and searched her house only coming up empty. What was going on Thaia thought? She reached for the phone and called the Law Office. No one in the office had any idea what she was talking about! They insisted no one had been sent by his office to deliver a package to her. Mr. Keenly assured Thaia that all information dealing with her mother had been dealt with long ago! Confused Thaia turned her attention back to the letter. Slowly she hung up the phone. Looking at the envelope once more she read.
To my beautiful Thaia open only when your husband dies in a late February car crash!
Her breath caught in her chest. Mother, she had to know of Parkers death before she died Thaia realized? Slowly she opened the envelope, all she could think of was that question! Peeking inside, Thaia saw that there was a map. No, not a map but a blueprint and key. She let the print and key slip out of the envelope into her hands. Thaia received a shock that zapped all through her body as the key feel to her hand. Surprised she jumped up in the air and almost tossed the key out of her hand. She moved in closer to get a better look. She stared at the key in her hand, it was a strange shape for a key! The handle of it was like an old fashion key but the head was, well a head! She bent lower over the unusual thing and gazed even closer. Thaia needed her glasses to get a proper look. The key was made of regular key material nothing special, but the details in the face were incredible, almost life like! Thaia felt that as she stared at the woman's beautiful face, she stared back! She thought that there was something familiar about the face, but the memory was blocked! Thaia had never seen the key growing up. She could see strange symbols etched into the back. She had seen the symbols before, but where she thought? Stumped Thaia put down the key and reached for the print. She allowed her hands to run over the seemingly fragile fabric. Smooth from age, and soft as silk but stronger! The map was old it appeared to be the blue print to her families’ house. Thaia spotted a handwritten date in the corner of the print, all it said was built in the beginning of time. What she thought as she read it again, her grandfather had always said the house was built a long time ago! The house had been empty for years why now thought Thaia? Curious she planned to visit the old house that weekend, after Kaylee started her summer vacation it would be good for both of them to get out of Denver. It had been a hard winter for both of them!

"Kaylee, come on we have to get on the road it is about eight hours to Montana then another five hours to the house. Bring plenty of warm cloths we are close to the Canadian boarder there!" Yelled Thaia as she began to get just a little impatient with her daughter.
"Ok mom . . . ok I am coming! I forgot to grab stuff for the car ride." Kaylee yelled back to her mother. The car ride to just twenty miles away from Canada went fast. In no time they were pulling up into the snow-covered driveway. Thaia could see the dark out line of the house surrounded by a thick forest of trees. A large natural frozen lake with many rivers that fed off it sat off to the side. Thaia thought it always seemed too dark of a spot for a house. The trees stopped most of the sun in the front of the house, making the front almost scary! The back was a different story, it was designed to allow the sun shine to flood through. Thaia felt hesitant and stopped the car in the driveway. She needed to put the s.u.v. into four wheel drive to get up the drive way. She just stared up into the closed up windows as they neared the impressive mansion. Thaia felt fear, something was wrong here she thought. Slowly she drove up to the garage coming to a stop. Thaia turned the car off.
"Mom can we get out?" Kaylee asked from behind, kicking the back of Thaias set impatiently!
"No, not yet! I want you to stay here while I check this place out. Make sure no one else moved in. Lock the doors’ baby."
"But mom I have to go to the bathroom!" Kaylee yelled at her mother. Thaia ignored Kaylee as she grabbed her twenty-two pistol. Looking from side to side for any early rising bears. Not seeing animal tracks in the snow, she started to walk toward the house. Thaia walked all around the house looking for signs of break in. When finding that everything was nice and locked up she went back to the car to get Kaylee.
"Ok lets go inside. We have a lot of cleaning to do." Thaia paused before remembering "OH and don’t forget that we have big bears here so be careful when walking around! You probably should not be outside by yourself . . . ok?" Thaia said fast before a protest from Kaylee could erupt. None came though, Kaylee just gave a look of total disgust and grabbed her stuff. She reluctantly made her way for the house, looking nervously into the trees for bears. Thaia caught up with her at the front door as she waited patiently to get inside the house. Kaylee did not know about the bears before her mother made her come up into the middle of no where. Taking out her keys Thaia unlocked the door, she grabbed for the handle and turned it. Some kind of force or strong gust of wind pulled the handle out of her hand, the door swung open. The pair just stood in the door way as the wind stirred up all of the layers of dust. Swirling dust particles danced in the fresh breath of air. Slowly they settled, too once again cover the world inside. Thaia entered first, fear crept into her body again or was it anticipation? Whatever it was she felt very uncomfortable! Further she walked into the threshold looking around at everything. Thaia took in the old familiar smells, it seemed ages since the last visit. Kaylee followed her (very closely), something about the house had her nervous also. They walked all through the house together Kaylee started to feel more relaxed the more rooms they searched.
"Mom what room is mine?" Kaylee asked.
"Well you can have my old room and I can stay in my parents old room, it's across from yours. Why don't you take your stuff in there and start to wipe stuff down so you have a clean place to sleep." Thaia said as she made her way back to the car and unloaded the rest of their supplies.

It took a week to clean part of the house, it had not been cleaned for so many years! Thick piles of dust lay everywhere on the wood floors as Thaia swept. Kaylee followed behind her scooping the dust with her dust pan throwing them away. The house was too big for the two of them with four wings. Thaia concentrated her energy cleaning the rooms on the first two floors! They would not need more room than that. Kaylee seemed to have as much fun as she had running around the big house exploring! Kaylee had inherited her mother’s love for adventure! Thaia on the other hand still could not shake the feeling that something was off. Her mind had not shut off since her arrival. She could not shake off the feeling that she had forgotten something from her childhood. Her dreams had change since her arrival also! The dreams were of her childhood running through the house pretending to be an explorer, looking for hidden treasures. Thaia could see herself as a child running up to the fourth floor. She entered the hallway when something terrifying would happen. At the end of the hall Thaia noticed a massive mirror hanging on the wall. She moved closer to the mirror. The hallway started to narrow behind her. She could not move forward or back. With a flash, a brilliant white light floods Thaias vision. Thaia looked into the mirror, she noticed that she was looking at the same hallway. Only it was a mirrored image void of her or the walls blocking her path . . . it was normal. Little Thaia was now being pulled fast backwards towards the walls blocking her. The childs small back slammed the walls hard, she hit the floor. Thaias eyes would fly open and that was where the dream would end! Something frightened her on the fourth floor. A fear from her childhood, Thaia decided it was time to see why. Getting dressed she started for the fourth floor before Kaylee woke up. She cleared the stairs and was almost to the fourth floor when the fear returned! Slowly Thaia walked around the corner she stared down the hall and saw the massive mirror from her dreams. Stunned she could not move, her eyes they were fixed on the mirror, fear had her stomach in her throat. The thought now crossed her mind that her dreams could be memories she had bared years ago and not dreams at all!
"Thaia, what are you eight?" She scolded herself. Trying to get her fear under control she takes her first step into the hall, Thaia stopped. Nothing happened, so another step then another. She stopped once more and turned to make sure everything was ok. Thaia turned towards the mirror, she caught something moving out of the corner of her eye. She turned to see bright white light, the force of it knocked her back. Thaia could hear in the wind a voice whisper.
"Thaia so good to see you!" Fear over took any courage Thaia had left. She ran like a child from the hall down the stairs. Thaia did not stop until she had entered the nearly defrosted gardens. Folding in half Thaia tried to control her breathing.
" What the hell was that?" Thaia screamed to the deserted snow-covered land. Did she just really experience that she thought unbelieving? Tring to clear her mind Thaia straightened herself up and walked further into the abyss. The gardens had been left alone to grow wild over the years. Thaia could not wait for spring to finally take hold! She missed the sweet smell of the rose bushes growing out of control, making most paths too thorny to take! Not to forget about the cosmos, they no doubt had taken over what space the roses left behind just as the lavender had! Thaia realized a little stunned that she loved the gardens especially the closer to the river she moved. Thaia took notice of her surroundings as she floated down the icy path trying not to slip. Further down the path Thaia knew was a little stream, where a family of song filled doves lived. Every spring she could hear the love songs of two doves. Not long after there first songs were sung had the forest filled with hundreds! Thaia loved to spend most of her summers by the river listening to the birds’ sing to her. She had always imagined that they had been a very happy family! Thaia walked to the stream it drew her closer to the peaceful noise of the mostly frozen water. She sat on a rock and drifted off as the song of two doves sang to her, as they had when she was a child! Thaia smiled happy to hear them still here. She could not help it, something about the spot calmed her soul! Thaia stared off in the distance, she appeared to be in a trance. Dazed she peered into the swirling water allowing it to pull her in, she lifted her gaze to a wall. A strange place for a wall, she thought distantly off in her mind. Nothing else was there, just a wall. Thaia started to come out of her trance. Unknowingly she walked over to the mysterious wall. Lifting her hand, she scraped some of the ice off. Thaia realized that she had reveled a strange circular pattern of symbols. She knew that she had seen the designs before, somewhere. The wall flooded back to her, it was the same wall from her dreams! The dream...the dream. . . Parker and Kaylee . . . the scream! Thaia snapped too, she turned on her heels and ran towards the house. Suddenly she remembered the void in her dream. Thaia stopped and slowly turned to look at the ground behind her. The void had never left her in her dream . . . would it also be here she thought? To her relief all she could see was a squirrel racing away up the path. Thaia started to run for the house again. Running into the kitchen Thaia saw Kaylee climbing onto the counter to reach a bowl for her breakfast. Relieved to see her Thaia sat at the kitchen table and watch Kaylee make herself breakfast singing the song to Its so Raven. Kaylee did not hear here mother run into the kitchen and was about to go sit in the living room and watch TV when she saw her.
"How long have you been there? I couldn't find you." Kaylee said as she walked to the couch to eat.
"I went for a walk in the gardens." Thaia, at a lost for words could not come up with a different answer. She was not sure the strange things really happened, everything was still jumbled up. Her mind could not grasp truly the situation! To her none of it made any sense. But still she should tell Kaylee to stay away from the fourth floor.
"Kaylee I was up on the fourth floor early this morning and noticed we have a big bat problem up there and some of the floor boards look rotten so stay away, ok. . . don't go any where near even the stairs, stay on the first three floors in all wings. . . ok?"
Kaylee scrunched up her noise in disgust and said "no problem mom." Then turned her attention to Raven.
"I'm going to change, ok."
"Ok mom." Kaylee answered her eyes never once leaving the TV!
Thaia ran up to her mothers old room. Slowly she closed the door behind her. Thaia turned nervously on her toes, her parents’ large bed came into view. Feeling exhausted all of the sudden she leaned against the door for support. With her mind racing, she disappeared in thought. What was going on in this house? What happened to her here Thaia thought desperately? The unknown came to Thaia. A sudden awareness coursed under her skin. The awareness of a darkness deep inside of her. Pushing herself off the door Thaia went to the night stand next to the bed and opened the small drawer. Inside laid the map and strange key. The symbols on the key were the same as the symbols on the wall in the garden. Thaia picked both items up and sat on the bed to examine them closer. She started with the print, it was the original layout of the house. Well not a house, more of a mansion. In either case it had been in her family sense "the beginning of time" according to her father Terrence Gregory Kendslee. Thaia did not have too much information about her history or the history of this very old house!
Most of her life the adults spoke in hushed voices around her. In many cases they spoke in different languages that she did not know! A great part of the time they sent her away "to play" so the adults could talk. More than once Thaia over heard her parents talk about a boy named Michael. More than once she had asked her parents if she had a brother she did not know about. Irritated with their young child for listening to the adults conversation sent her up to bed without dinner. Thaia bent over to get a closer look at the details. Looking over the blue print she realized that the house started out as a four-story house with two large rooms on each floor. All but the fourth floor had grown over the years. For some strange reason the fourth floor still had never been added onto. It just stayed as a long dark hall. Stretched through a solid wooden corridor, rooms had never been added. At the end of the long corridor sat a large old mirror. Why she thought for the first time, had they skipped over the fourth floor? Thaia moved her eyes to the wall where the mirror hung and noticed that the blue print showed a doorway and not a wall. Confused she shook her head as she said out loud.
‟But there was nothing beyond it on the print just open space.” The blue print appeared unfinished, was there something behind the mirror. No chance Thaia thought was she going to find out, no one was going up there! Thaia studied each room and for the most part remembered all of them. She explored the house up and down being the only child in the house it gave her something to do. But there was one room she did not remember ever seeing! The mysterious room was down in the basement. The room sat past the point where she had ever gone. Thaia only remembered a wall there, no door. Her curiosity started to get the best of her. Thaia saw a mystery that needed to be solved! She got up with the map and key in hand. A flash caught her attention before she could leave. It was her father’s collection of hunting knives. Thaia ran for them grabbing the largest one, she turned and ran for the door. Thaia opened the door and ran down the stairs to yell for Kaylee to get dressed.

"Why mom?" Kaylee asked thinking hopefully maybe they were going into town, she was bored!
"You will see, come on lets go!" Thaia said as she pushed her daughter up the stairs. Not five minutes had past when Kaylee stood next to her mother waiting with anticipation.
"Ok, what are we doing?" Kaylee asked with a bright smile on her beautiful face. Kaylee did not bother to brush her hair. Her thinking of course was that it would take too long to get all the knots out of her long blond hair! She had the look of a homeless person about her Thaia thought as she shook her head.
"We are going down to the basement!" Thaia said as she noticed Kaylee face shrink into a frown.
"Mom, I am not cleaning down there! Have you seen the size of the spiders down there? They are unnatural!" Kaylee said as she hugged her arms around her tiny body, shivering at the thought.
"No, we are not cleaning I found this print of the house. It shows a room that I don't remember ever seeing before." Thaia answered pulling Kaylee further down.
"And why do I have to come?" Kaylee asked in hope her mother would change her mind.
"I have my reasons, now come on it won't take long." With that Thaia started for the basement armed with a flash light and an old hunting knife tucked in her pants. Kaylee followed dragging her feet the hole way. The basement was gigantic with its cave like walls. High vaulted, gothic style ceilings stretched up so far that it threatened to poke out of the upstairs floor. A very large fire place dominated the far wall. In the past her family always had that fire place roaring. The heat from the fire would warm the floors throughout the house. But today the fires were out, making the basement feel cold and damp. Thaia walked further into the big room, she began to remember her childhood. There were lots of nooks and crannies for hiding places down in the dark. Thaia had always pretended that she was the queen to the fairies painted on the ceilings in most rooms down in her dungeon. Most, Thaia realized the darkness was not disturbing to her.
Not Thaia, she spent a lot of time down here roller skating in the warmth of the fire place. It was the only place mom would allow her to skate. Natalia worried Thaia would scratch the beautiful wood floors upstairs! Thaia moved on, crossing the massive empty space. In her mind she saw her younger self listening to music skating around from room to room. Escaping into her own world, it was the only way she could find to deal with her mother! Back then the basement had been full of boxes and junk that her mother and her mothers mother had collected. The boxes provided her with her own little town. The boxes had all been long gone since her mother died. In fact, all of her aunts and uncles claimed their share throughout the years. All were dead now, she and Kaylee were the last of her blood left. Thaia had never seen any of her families things returned to her. All she had left of her past was the house. Slowly Thaia moved on, walking through the ghosts of her past. At the end of the emptiness stood a row of hallways. Some rooms were small, others as big as the main room. Kaylee now stood so close to Thaia that she pushed her over. Thaia looked down to see Kaylee hugging her arms to her chest again. Kaylee had never been down into the dark basement before.
"It's ok Kaylee I played down here when I was your age. It is big and dark but that is all, no monsters live down here! Look this is the way we need to go." Thaia said as she pointed down the darkest corridor yet! Drawing Kaylee behind her they began their search. Thaia stared up into the high ceilings, amazed to see the paintings still in perfect condition. Some famous artist had painted muralis on the ceiling. A fantasy world of queens, elves, devils, and giants fought each other in a dramatic scene of life and death. Thaia moved further into the middle of the basement, to the room she had never seen before! The same mysterious room that had been on the print, but where did it come from, she thought? The wall, she was sure of it, had been here before! The smoothest of all the walls it was easy to draw on. It had been made of concrete and not rock like the rest! Thaia could see all her childhood colorings, they still played across the smooth wall. Thaia, sad when she could not be outside, would bring the outside to the inside. The pictures of mountains and lakes seemed to brighten the cold dark emptiness of the basement. The door however seemed to have been placed smack in the middle of one of her beautiful impression of Mirror Lake!
The door had defiantly been placed after she had left . . . but for what reason? Thaia walked over to the mysterious door she turned the knob. The door seemed to open the rest of the way without her help . . . similar to the front doors behavior! Hesitant to move any further, she stood and searched the room but it was to dark! Thaias flashlight didn't seem to shine more than a couple inches in front of them. The room must have been massive Thaia thought as she pushed further ahead. She took a step into the room when Kaylee pulled her to a stop and pointed over to a far corner. There in the darkness a small sliver of light. Slowly they crossed the empty space. Thaia shined her flash light up, down then all around they could not ever see past a few inches in front of them. The darkness felt thick and heavy. A force of some kind seemed to weigh them down as it slowed their progress. It pulled their feet heavily to the ground, almost trying to keep them from advancing! They had to push their selves through the ever thickening air, exhausted with the great effort.
Coming closer Thaia could see the out line of a massive oak door. The closer they got the more detail she could see. Someone had taken great pride in making such an unusual piece of art she thought as she admired the craftsmanship. Hand chiseled symbols decorated almost every inch of the beautiful wood. The designs reminded Thaia of the Celtic symbols that her great, great, great, great, great-grandmother sowed onto a tapestry. Which to this day laid protected in a climate control glass case in her families library. The tapestry was the only recorded history of her family. Thaia thought the door must have been made about the same time. Moving closer she ran her hand down the door feeling every chiseled mark that had lovingly been sanded so not to leave splinters. The door made her feel at peace, somehow she knew home was held behind. Closing her eyes Thaias vison passed through the door to a small . . . tunnel? She opened her eyes, what had she just done? Thaia thought she had lost her mind, she could see images in her head as if she stood in front of the tunnel now! Her fear had disappeared despite her confusion.
Thaia placed her hand on the door handle and turned. Not to her surprise the knob slipped from her hands once again. Thaia could feel now that the house had a mind of its own! Or perhaps it was the ghost of her dead mother fallowing her around in the old house, helping her to find her way! The hall was brightly lite by large stain glass windows running high close to the ceiling on both sides of the narrow hall. A scene of animals playing a game, hiding from what she assumed was mother nature, decorated the stain glass skillfully. They fallowed the narrow hall to a set of marble spiral stairs that plummeted straight down and straight up. Thaia noticed a very small door about half way down surrounded by lights and a bench! The door seemed to go somewhere into the wall. Beyond, the stairs continued down were she could not imagine. The darkness seemed to be thick and heavy the further down the stairs they traveled. So dark was it below that Thaia could not see the bottom and questioned wether there was in fact a bottom at all! Something about the strange little door had gotten her attention at the present time! She knew the door and knew that it would lead them to something fantastic! But how would she know that? Thaia thought that she had never seen this place before! She had to see what actually lay beyond, if she did not her mind would never rest again she thought. No longer able to control her curiosity, Thaia and Kaylee went down the marble stair case.
"Mom what is this, a doggy door in the middle of a stair case?" Kaylee asked sarcastically as she started to tap her foot on the marble step. Thaia knew her child was scared. Kaylee was like her mother and used sarcasm to mask uncomfortableness.
"I don't know, I have never been here before! That I can remember at least, but still I feel we should check it out. . . ya?" Thaia said almost in a whisper as she opened the small door. It opened into a very small crawl space that went on and on as far as she could tell.
"Well Kaylee I think I will go first. You can stay here or come with me, your choice!" Said Thaia as she bent down onto her stomach to crawl down the shaft. Soon she could hear Kaylee behind her talking to herself, something about spiders. They crawled down and down, into the dark with only her dying flashlight to gild there way. Thaia could hear Kaylee moaning about the spiders from behind each time she thought one had landed on her! Thaia turned to point the flash light at her.
"Are you going to complain the hole way there?" She then turned back around and jumped as she swore she had just caught a glimpse of herself, a faded reflection. A second long flash had them feeling as if they had been sucked through a small straw and now crouched on the fare end of it. Not sure exactly what had just happened--if anything at all, they sat frozen! Thaia listened for any familiar sound that would settle her nerves. She searched for something to give her some kind of clue to their location. There was something very faint ahead of them. It sounded like wind beating on a loose window Thaia thought as she moved on slowly. Without a sound they moved closer to a faint chattering. The closer they moved the more light they could see until finally they could see the end. The crawl space started to open into a six-foot cylinder opening that ended at an old wooden platform. Thaia walked over to the edge of the old wooden railing and saw only a single ladder that lead down to the first floor. In awe of the massive size of the room Thaia and Kaylee stood with their mouths wide open. They stared at the floors and floors of what appeared to be beautiful party dresses, hats, cloaks made of silk, strange fashioned furniture, and jewelry. Thaia could see Kaylee eyes sparkle as she eyed mysterious treasures from the unknown.
"Oh my god Kaylee, look at all this stuff!" Thaia said in total surprise as she raised her hands to cover her mouth just incase she let other choice words fall out! Never had she seen anything like the scene glittering at her!
"You did not know about this room?" Kaylee forced out, still stunned.
"No!" Thaia turned to start down the ladder no longer able to control her excitement! Finding a hidden treasure that had always been right under her noise was too much. Thaia roamed this great house morning and night how did she miss all of this she thought? Reaching the bottom Thaia turned in a full circle to take in all the wonder. Curious to how all of the treasures had gotten inside she tried to find a door. Not finding one Thaia spotted a half moon window that had a balcony leading to it. Taking a different ladder up to the balcony Thaia climbed until she stood on the balcony. She peered out of the old dirty window to her surroundings. It was her.... backyard but then again it wasn't. All the buildings were formed with marble and not stone. No snow, Thaia pressed her face into the glass to make sure she saw a land in full summer! Confused Thaia tried to open the window in order to get a better look. No good she thought as the window fought against her, it would not budge. Thaia turned to search for another way out. She found no other way, but how did all of this stuff get in here she thought? Walking around the walls, Thaia searched high and low for a different way. The room was gigantic, it reminded her of their barn. Instead of being used as an animal shelter it was a costume shop. Just as Thaia was about to give up and head back the same way they came, light caught her eye. Kaylee was busy going through all of the beautiful gowns and boxes of jewelry, so Thaia walked over to the light. She pushed the tapestry aside to reveal a door. She tested the handle it opened easily allowing a cool breeze to sweep over her as she stepped out into the warm sunshine. Looking around, she recognized everything about the landscape! It was indeed her backyard only weeks ahead in the season! It was not the weather that had her so spooked! She turned around to look at what should be the barn but instead found an ivory tower. Beautiful carvings curving around the entirety of the white tower. Thaia stopped and calmly took a moment to take in all her surroundings, it was the same, but very different. The hair on the back of her neck stood up, she knew she was not alone! Frozen Thaia could feel someone staring at her from behind. Turning very slowly she caught a glimpse of a strangely dressed man. A crossbow strapped to his back, the stranger ran into the trees. Finding it difficult to swallow with her heart in her throat Thaia bolted into the tower. She ran straight for Kaylee as she searched through a wooden chest. Thaia grabbed her child and with a sprint had both of them entering the crawl space in no time. Kaylee did not say a word as they crawled at a much faster pace to the end. She waited until they reached the small door and were safely in the stairway.
"Mom, WHAT happened?" Asked Kaylee scared, something had spooked her mother very much! Shaking Kaylee grabbed for her mothers hands. Thaia moved both of them away from the small door.
"I saw a strange man out side the barn or . . . tower? I don't now what is going on here! I found a door, you were busy! I . . ." Thaia slowed herself down trying to get her breath, "wanted to see where we were at. So I went outside, it was the backyard but when I turned to the barn it was an ivory tower. The house looked more like a castle and not my house. Come one, we need to get out of here." Thaia lead the way back upstairs locking every door on the way. Entering the living room she told Kaylee to sit down for a while.
"Kaylee I want you to go and stay with your Uncle and Auntie" Kaylee started to give a protest
" No, don't give me that look Kaylee! I don't feel that you are safe here! I don't want you here until I make some since of this." Getting up Thaia continued to convince Kaylee it was the best idea.
"Anyway you have been on me for a week now to take you there, so what do you think?" Kaylee thought for a minute.
"I think you need to come with me. I don't think you should stay here by yourself." Kaylee said with concern.
"I will be fine love. I'm curious I always had a strange feeling about this place! Being back, I think there's something here. Go get your stuff ready, I will call Shore and Bill to set plans with them." Kaylee ran up the stairs to pack her bags. Mean while Thaia called her in-laws to set Kaylees escape up.
After only fifteen minutes of packing she entered the living room with her bags ready to go.
"I called and they want you for two weeks if that is ok with you? You are going to a summer camp with your cousins! They go to the same place every year and say it is a lot of fun!" Kaylee eyes lite up, her cousins had always bragged about their wonderful summers. Now she thought she would get to see what the big deal was.
" Are you going to be ok without me for so long?" Asked Kaylee genuinely concerned about her mother knowing how much she missed her when she was gone.
"Don't worry Kaylee, your Auntie will have her cell phone! Ok they are here, come on."
"What? They are already here? I thought you would take me mom." Said Kaylee caught off guard. Kaylee had thought she could get her Auntie to talk her mom into going with them.
"Well, when I called, they were out and offered to come and get you. Come on love." Thaia helped Kaylee into the car smothering her with kisses. She said her goodbys and waived as they pulled onto the main road and out of sight. Thaia stood alone in the drive and thought what her next step should be? Where would be the best place to start? The family study she thought would be the safest place to start! She felt somewhat hesitant about going back down the tunnel!

Chapter 2
The return of the Queen

Michael stunned, did not want to trust his eyes. He stopped and turned in time to see the woman fly into the tower. Was that really . . . Thaia or were his eyes deceiving him?
"My, my, my Michael, she will not be happy to see you again, will she? Thaia looks great though for being human and mortal!" Talous said with an evil smirk as he stepped from behind the trees. He had been hiding behind then in the shadows. Talous was a larger than average half breed.
"No, she will not be happy Talous! What, checking on me?!" Michael asked with sarcasm. Michael knew that his Grandfather no longer trusted him after he returned years ago.
"Don't kill the spy, I'm only doing what he asks. So, are you going to report this back to him or . . . am I?" Asked Talous not convinced of Michaels loyalties. Michael was not a full-blooded giant he had Ljosalfar blood in him also. Talous was not full-blooded either, but had readily been accepted. His mother came from a well-known dark wizard's family and Talous father was a Svartalfar!
"It has been thirteen years, I think I have proven myself!" Michael paused.
" Yes, of course I would have told him even if his nasty little spies were not sniffing around." Said Michael but before he could vanish, Talous threw out at him.
"What of Janet are you going to tell my sister-- she" Talous indicated the spot Thaia had just run from " will soon be back in this world?" Michael did not answer and vanished into thin air.
Furious Talous followed, with a poof he was gone traveling through the wind. Talous channeled to the underground world, he wanted to beet Michael back to Ymir. According to his Master, Michael had proven himself to be a very powerful half breed. Therefore, Michael would be too formidable to most not to allow a little leniency. It was Ymir's wish to allow Michael to remain as a free agent as long as he was followed and watched! Ymir, the very powerful Frost Giant just happened to be Michaels grandfather.
Complicated was Michaels life, his mother was a Ljosalfar "a white elf" and his father, Thrudgelmír was a Frost Giant! Michaels home for the time being was Svartalfheim, which lied deep under the ground. They're in the cold damp ground the Svartalfars (Ymirs slaves) stayed during daylight. The maggots feared the pain of being turned to stone if light ever touched their dark skin! Throughout time darkness had taken over more than their small dark hearts! Michael did not have the same restrictions his "light side" saved him from their sun afflictions. Michaels skin was white as light-- like his mothers. He also had just one head like his mother, but everything else was of Thrudgelmír. Michaels six headed Frost Giant father was one of Ymirs sons . . . a dark terrible evil! Thrudgelmír had seen Korenia (Michaels mother) as she walked through the woods with her prized Sleipnir named Slavai. The magnificent horse had eight legs giving the beast its majestic look. Slavai was able to travel through the sea and air always sitting on top was Korenia. The many heads of the giants all agreed she was just as magnificent as her horse, as they soared through the air! Thrudgelmír fell in love as his gaze fell transfixed to the beauty. He had been bewitched was all Thrudgelmír could say when Ymir found out about their union and Michael, a child of light and dark. Michael was raised by his mother in the country. In an invisible house next to a rock formation similar to the human’s Stonehenge they lived their lives. He had free rein of the Ljosalfars lands as a youngster. Michael even attended the Ljosalfars school, an honor hardly ever granted! Ymir would never trust Michael because of the Ljosalfars loyalty to him! After all his mother had sacrificed her life to fight against the mighty giant! Ymir felt Michael had chosen sides long ago when his mother died! Michael never told Ymir why he walked away from his old life to start one with them. Michael would have to face up to many of his demons in the up coming months, he knew that. He was a perfect example of what a torn soul was, and with Thaia soon to enter his life again he knew she would only test him further!
Michael arrived outside of Ymir's bed chambers, he thumped on the over sized Oak door and waited for a reply.
"Enter." Answered a deep thundering growl. Slowly Michael pushed open the massive door and entered an equally massive room. Everything was over sized and with a thick coat of ice. Ymirs chambers resembled more of an ice cave than an underground fortress. Michael searched the room for Talous. No sign of him, Michael felt relieved not to see the spy. Michael knew he could channel faster!
"Yes Michael." Ymir said without looking up from his desk, he appeared to be going through important paper work.
"Master, she has entered our world!" Was all Michael had to say. Ymir stopped what he was doing, and for a second had a look of fear in his cold giant eyes. Blinking Ymir came too and jumped into action.
"I want the guards to double! It won't take long now before she receives all the knowledge of her people, along with her powers. We need to strike her before she finds out who and what she is, or we loose our only chance to control her! Her husband must have died!" Ymir turned to Michael giving him a suspicious look.
" Why have you not said a thing Michael?" Ymir searched his face for a lie.
"The Ljosalfars allow me to pass through their lands, but do not trust me enough to divulge that kind of information. They are aware of my loyalties." Michael said with a point before he continued.
" I cannot sense Thaia anymore . . . not since our connection was broken by her marriage to that mortal! I was five feet from her and could not sense her presence." Michael admitted with great difficulty and frustration as he stared off into a dark corner trying to avoid the giants questioning stare.
"I want you to stay way from her Michael! I will send someone else to distract Thaia." Ymir said with malice in his voice, he was going to have Thaia turn to his side or she would be murdered before she could destroy him!
"Yes, I think I will send Talous this will require his special gifts." Talous special gifts meaning that he could move freely as Michael, but he could be trusted too in the end take care of business!
" I want you Michael to spy on your relatives and alert me to any preparation for their precious long lost Kiama." Ymir said as he rubbed his cold hands together in anticipation for her return. The giant had difficulties slowing his breathing down!
"At once Master." Michael turned and left Ymir. Walking down the corridor to his chambers Michael could not shake the feel of dread. Talous was Ymir's personal assassin he was good at his job, almost as good as he was! There was another emotion Michael thought never to feel again . . . hope! Thaia had been his assignment when she was in high school. It had been his job to infiltrate her life to become her lover! Michael was the only human form so it had been his assignment to become the father of her pre-ordained child!
It however did not work, Ymirs jealousy had gotten the best of him as Michaels love grew for the giants queen! It was Ymirs hope that Thaias powers would be his to control! Turning a powerful Kiama evil would have tipped the scales, to Ymir favor of course! Michael smiled to himself as a memory forced its way to the surface. Thaia started as an order, she ended up as his light! Ymir had feared that Michael could be pulling from him and his duty! His grandsons love for Thaia would allow her to control Michael more effectively than he could! Ymir ordered Michael back home to the underworld. Michael broke Thaias heart in order to prove to Ymir it was the evil him returning, not a spy. A year later Michael lost his connection with Thaia! She had married Parker, another old friend from high school. Michael never truly forgot about her, after all Thaia was his first true love. Michael could not help the feel of his heart skipping at the thought of her here in his world! Surrounded by the magic of the universe as the Queen of the Ljosalfars and not just a human! He knew, secretly Thaias dreams and prayers would be answered in the next couple of days! Her one burning question would have an answer-- yes there was more to life than just surviving, there was a purpose to life and death!

Chapter 3
The search for truth

Thaia entered the families very large library surveying the filth. They had decided not to clean some of the rooms, until they wanted to use them. Thaia walked over to the windows and opened the heavy window coverings to admit the blinding rays of sunshine. Long graceful fingers of light streaked across the dust filed room. The light revealed millions of little partials of dust dancing in her wake. Struggling to open the window, Thaia jiggled and pushed. Finally she managed to push them wide open. A soft sweet-smelling breeze flood the stale smelling room with a sent of springs reluctant arrival. Thaia leaned into the sun and sweet breeze as she listened to the sounds of birds singing high up in the trees.
She turned to the room her spirits seem to warm as memories of her mother and father settled in her mind. As a child her father loved to read books of fairies and princesses. Her mother would sit near the fire place listening to his stories! Opening the room up lifted the spirits that seemed to linger, it didn't seem so forgotten and dead! Thaia could not help but to dwell on her parents as she stood in the middle of the library. Surrounded she felt, by Natalia her mother and Terrence her beloved father with all of their beloved books. Natalia had been a very beautiful and graceful woman with her blond hair and shining blue eyes. Her mother didn't stand more that five foot one inches, but had a powerful presence about her. In truth Natalia had confessed to Thaia that only females had been born in her family, all were about the same size. . . .short! Thaia was not surprised to only hit five-foot herself. Thaias mother tried to help her daughter with her issues by telling her that" there would not be a more powerful being anywhere in the worlds". Thaia had always thought of her mother as a hippy, or even maybe a witch. Natalia denied of course her allegations. Then would continue to teach her about herbs, sun, moon, stars, and mother earth. Natalia was not weird about her teachings it was all very scientific actually. The knowledge according to her father had to be learnt by all the women in the family and passed on to the next generation. It was important to her father so she tried to make it important to herself also! Natalia made it a point to make Thaia learn a new "recipe" every night after her home work had been finished!
Walking around the room, she saw the altar her mother made to support a glass case that held her family tree. A thick cover of dust clung to the glass protecting the lives of her past. Thaia had no knowledge of the past, her mother always told her "when you are ready" then would say no more. Thaia gazed down trying to decipher the foreign language, as she had done for hours as a child. She turned to the rest of the room and thought where she should start? What was she looking for she thought also? Thaia thought for a second about going through the crawl space again. With Kaylee gone she was free to explore without worry for her safety. But instead decided to wait and see what she found there first! Maybe her mother had left a journal or some kind of record . She stepped over the old creaky wood floors straight for the boxes in the corner of the room, she would start there. She went through every book and paper she came across, not to overlook anything. Thaia slowly let the papers in her hands fall to her lap as a strange creeping noise came from the wall behind her. She could not pin point the location of the groans, the entire room seemed to vibrate and moan. Thaia did not dare move until she had a better idea of what actually was happening. The noise snapped loudly then it happened, with a crash part of the wall directly behind her fell. Scrambling back on her hands in the spider position, Thaia narrowly escaped being hit.
"What in the hell was that?" She said to the empty dust filled room. She did not move until the dust settled. As the room cleared Thaia could see that half of the wall had fallen away, leaving behind a hidden door. Cautiously she moved forewords for a better look. It made no sense to put a door there she thought! It would only go to the back yard, but seven stories off the ground in the north tower. There was no way down but the stairs in the house! The wood was a bleach white, finely crafted door! Beautiful carvings, like the carvings on that strange tower that she had never seen before.
Odd Thaia thought as she brought her hand up to her mouth and covered a cough. She tried to wave the dust away from her face impatiently. More secrets she thought as a frown deepened on her face. When she was a child, school had an ancestor day. In which one would ware the clothing that ones ancestors may have worn back in the day. When she started to ask questions of the Kendslee Family, like where they came from and what would they have worn? Her mother shooed her out of the room and told to go play! She had to stay home with her mother that next day. All her life she had been given bits and pieces of her families past, but never the whole story.
Thaia thought for a moment that no one was here to stop her now, she had full rein of the house and its many secrets! Reaching for the door handle she turned only to find it locked. Bending over to view the lock, she saw it was a very odd! Standing up Thaia opened the window directly next to it and peered outside. Nothing, but over sized river rocks covered the outer portion of the house. Thaia thought that perhaps her grandfather meant to build a balcony here and for some reason decided to seal it up instead. Giving up that she would find anything in the study she made the decision to go back down the crawl space.
Last edited by Stephanie on Tue Aug 07, 2007 6:05 pm, edited 5 times in total.
User avatar
Just Registered
Just Registered
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2006 11:17 am


Postby Bmat » Mon Dec 11, 2006 11:52 am

Hi, Stephanie! Welcome to Speculative Vision. Your thread was moved from Comments to short stories, since this is the correct forum for it.

Your post is very long. Shorter posts seem to get more responses. You may want to break the post up into multiple posts, maybe even separate threads.
User avatar
Super Moderator
Super Moderator
Posts: 5823
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2005 5:31 pm
Location: East coast US
Blog: View Blog (10)


Postby Bmat » Mon Dec 11, 2006 12:19 pm

Long, long ago before even the race of man, Ymir the first great Frost Giant had been imprisoned in the Northern ice capes of Almalgla by a powerful Ljosalfar Sorceress. A bloody war broke out over control of the beautiful Ljosalfar world! For one hundred years the giant slept and peace ran throughout the Universe. One day by destines chance a fire breathing dragon by the name of Muspel had perched herself on an icy shelf just above the giants imprisoned body, too tired to continue on her journey she settled down and slept. The ice began to melt, so sound was her sleep that the dragon Muspel unknowingly unleashed a tremendous amount of heat with each hot exhale of her breath! Muspel melted away the ice and reveled Ymir the Great Frost Giant, sleeping peacefully in his melted tomb surrounded by other frost giants. From his sleep Ymir had fathered his children and started the rebirth of the race of Frost Giants. From his leg’s Ymir sprung identical twin sons’ Eldmanel and Caenxe, while under his arm pit Ymir fathered yet another set of twins, but the second set, defiantly were not identical. One, a six headed son named Thrudgelmír and the other child whom would be his only daughter Helga (born with only one head). Slowly the race of giants would recover with the help and support from Domhnull Dubh, he was known to all to be part of the devil race! Domhnull had heard of the giants release, he bestrode his power onto the giants, helping them rise once again to great power, the evil sorcerer had made a very powerful slave! Ymir in gratitude pledged his loyalty to Domhnull Dubh and reeked havoc on the universes! Domhnull, in exchange taught Ymir how to enter the Ljosalfars world . . . the only pure world left from his poison! After twenty years of fighting the powerful beings, Ymir heard on the wind, one bloody night a secret about him! Every time from that night on when the wind would blow he could hear the threat breath down his neck! Ymir unable to sleep on one windy night traveled to the end of the thousand universes to find the source of the whispers. The source of the warnings . . . he found it high on a frozen icy cliff, the ice dragon by the name of Insa the dragon of Prophets. The dragons’ size matched his own, he noted as he scanned the icy blue hardness of the skin. Ymir searched for a weak point, taking special note of the dragons tail, it was covered with massive ice spears protruding out acting as sharp spikes on the end of a club! The dragon told Ymir she knew of his demise and asked if he cared to know what she knew would come to be . . . "no one ever has changed their preordained destiny!" Insa hissed at Ymir, he insisted the dragon tell him his future, but she had another warning for him first (knowing fully well the giant would not listen, they never did)!

The excerpt reads like an outline; events are listed. You need to use spellcheck. There are a number of punctuation and word use errors. Groups of different thoughts should be broken up into paragraphs.

I'd recommend reading through the story carefully, one of your big paragraphs at a time. After running it through spellcheck, make sure that the words that you are using are what you want. Break it up into shorter paragraphs. Then you can add action.

I'll get you started with some problems that I found in the quoted portion.

This is personal preference, but when I read a story where I have to stop and figure out how to pronounce the names, and sometimes just skip over them when they are too obscure to pronounce, it makes the story less of a pleasure for me.

A bloody war- this should possibly be the start of a new paragraph. It is not clear whether the war broke out after the imprisonment- I think this is what is meant.

The flow from talking about the giant, to mentioning the war, back to the giant, is not smooth. It seems as if there are facts that are being tossed in.

destines - should be destiny's , and why was it a matter of destiny?


I think the imprisoned giant would be better than the imprisoned giant's body. This makes the reader wonder if the giant is dead, or separated from his body somehow.

"just above the giants imprisoned body, too tired to continue on her journey she settled down and slept. " Recommend dividing this into two sentences.

"The ice began to melt, so sound was her sleep that the dragon Muspel unknowingly unleashed a tremendous amount of heat with each hot exhale of her breath! " Break this up after melt. I'd even put about the ice melting after speaking of the amount of heat. And the exclamation point is not correct here, in my opinion. Exhalation. or even, with each hot breath.

reveled- you mean revealed- spellcheck would help you with such errors.

I am going to stop here. The excerpt needs to be divided into several new paragraphs.

Please don't be bothered by the number of my suggestions. The basic idea of your story looks promising. Some polishing up to make it more readable will make a big difference. Good luck with it!
Last edited by Bmat on Sat May 26, 2007 11:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Super Moderator
Super Moderator
Posts: 5823
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2005 5:31 pm
Location: East coast US
Blog: View Blog (10)


Postby Chaeronia » Mon Dec 11, 2006 1:49 pm

Hello Stephanie, welcome to the boards.

This really is too long a post to warrant a detailed critique. It would take one of Tolkien's ages for me to do one here. As Bmat suggests, perhaps you could break it down and offer it to us in digestible pieces (1,000 words or so) to facilitate worthwhile responses.

Because of the daunting length and its info-dump beginning (as Bmat mentioned), which is a real put-off for me, I haven't read through the majority of your work. From what I have read, though, your general use of grammar is somewhat wayward and it adversely affects your writing. Two immediate examples: your aggressive use of both the '...' technique and also of the exclamation mark. Small matters, maybe, but I really did find their preponderance distracting.

Don't be swayed by those who might tell you that a good grasp of grammar isn't essential.

Also, on a purely aesthetic point, I see your first chapter is markedly larger than the subsequent ones. You don't always have to be consistent with this, of course, but there is a clear discrepancy as it stands.

I'd certainly take the time to read and comment on a more manageable section of your story, Stephanie, but as it is at present it's simply too big an ask!


'There's a vampire, dad. It's trying to get me.'
'I know, son,' he said softly. 'I saw it.'
'You saw it?'
'Yeah. I broke its bloody neck. I won't have no vampires in my house.'
User avatar
New User
New User
Posts: 89
Joined: Tue Apr 19, 2005 6:11 am
Location: England


Postby codlaim » Mon Dec 11, 2006 7:15 pm

I've read the prologue. It feels like the rest of the piece is different from what I read of it (the first few lines of the first chapter), so I'll address that separately.

I think that the others are right about the lack of polish. There are a number of mistakes in spelling. I do think that this first bit shows promise though. The problem is in the delivery. The prologue ought to read like myth, which is why I think you didn't concentrate on description. It does read a little like an outline, but a little work could shape it into a solid myth. The elements are all there. It is reminiscent of Norse mythology, the little I know of it, and a little from others, but there is some imagination there in the use of those elements and in those that you added. The problem is that it doesn't read like myth yet. The most important thing you need to do is get rid of the exclamation marks. It hurts if myth is the style you want here. It will hurt no matter what style you choose. I think there's a reason you don't see it much in narrative. Also, you need to keep an even tone. There are times throughout, and at the end, where the piece no longer reads like myth. You really ought to pick one and stick with it. It can be difficult, but I feel that it's important.

Another couple notes. I would consider changing the way you approach the song. It doesn't really read like one. Either work on it to make it more lyrical or tell us what's in it in the narrative. I would also work on the little inner dialogue that the giant has with himself at the end. It doesn't really fit and it might be good to do without. If you incorporated the elements throughout the myth, such as the real nature of the relationship between the queen and Ymir, which is still unclear, I think the piece would work better.

Pay attention to the spelling and grammar mistakes and do a little to make the piece read more like the myth it could be and less like an outline and you will have a good opening.

Hope this helps.
"We need men who can dream of things that never were."
User avatar
New User
New User
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Jun 30, 2006 3:25 pm
Location: Philadelphia


Postby codlaim » Mon Dec 11, 2006 8:11 pm

I don't have it in me to read all of this tonight. I'll do my best to get through it soon. You really ought to break long stories like this up. I know it's been mentioned, but it's true.

Anyway, the reason I'm writing now is because something occurred to me. It feels like there is all this enthusiasm in the writing, but that it hasn't been channeled or anything. You seem to have sat down to write, had some good ideas, gotten carried away, and not gone through it again to clean it up and revise. I understand if that is the case. It's actually kind of sweet. It hurts the product, though. There are too many mistakes to list. It needs a good proof reading. I was right about the rest of the story as different from the prologue. There is more description and the info isn't as dumped, although there is still some of that. The exclamation points are a problem for me. It's up to you what to do about that.

Like I said, I'll try to get through all of it, but it may take me a couple days. I like the energy in the writing, but it needs another look from you, maybe a couple, to make the piece a better read.

Hope this helps.
"We need men who can dream of things that never were."
User avatar
New User
New User
Posts: 34
Joined: Fri Jun 30, 2006 3:25 pm
Location: Philadelphia


Postby Grand Evander » Thu Dec 28, 2006 2:27 pm

I greatly appreciate the incorporation of Norse mythology and think, from what I've read of the prologue, that the story promises to be both interesting and exciting. I'll try to read it in full soon, when I have the time.
User avatar
Grand Evander
True Visionary
True Visionary
Posts: 1221
Joined: Wed Jun 28, 2006 5:52 pm
Location: New York, New York


Postby Bmat » Sat May 26, 2007 11:09 am

The edited title says "revised."

Here are my comments on the first paragraph:

Long, long ago before even the race of man Ymir, the first great Frost Giant had been imprisoned. Deep in the Northern ice capes of Almalgla Ymir laid, frozen in time. Incased in ice and magic by a powerful Ljosalfar Sorceress by the name of Thaia. Exhausted from the centuries of bloodshed the mighty Queen fell to the cold ground. The giant watched from his tomb as she took her last breath. Ymir, closed his eyes as the last of the Queens’ magic sent him into a deep sleep. The battle came to a stand still, peace ran throughout all lands as life began to breathe once more. For one hundred years the giant slept, and peace ran throughout the Universe.

Comma after "man." This sentence might be better in active instead of passive voice.

Second sentence: "laid" is the incorrect word, you want "lay."

The next is not a complete sentence. It needs to be made into a sentence or joined to another sentence.

The reader must stop and think whether the Queen that is spoken of in the next sentence is the same as the sorceress that was mentioned before.

The next two sentences beginning with The giant watched should probably be joined into one sentence.

"and" peace. or, ";" peace.

I am not sure what is meant. Is it that as long as the giant slept there was peace? It is not clear.
User avatar
Super Moderator
Super Moderator
Posts: 5823
Joined: Tue Apr 05, 2005 5:31 pm
Location: East coast US
Blog: View Blog (10)


Part one of two.

Postby LightBrigade » Sat May 26, 2007 7:11 pm

Context (Non-literary) evaluation.
There is powerful capacity for plot, capability to describe so that the reader is bound to the scene, and remarkable influence on the emotion - the reader is driven to be emotionally involved, moreover without realising truly why and not knowing whose side the reader really is! Which may be unintentional, springing from true talent.

In view of the fact that talent is evident, a critical (literary) analysis is useful.

Critical analysis.
Such analysis of the whole work will fail to give fruit to the writer at this stage the work is. The work has to be revised at least once more after the last revision of 16th March, and follow the suggestions below.

A direct question to Stephanie, is English your mother tongue, a second language or a foreign language? The answer is of fundamental importance to the next evaluation.

In my next post, there are remarks on points which I have grouped according to their literary nature.

They concern a part of the posted work. After this part, the same remarks would have to be repeated, for similar points observed throughout. That rest part will become open to further analysis only if it is free of points for correction which appear in my post below.

Generally, in view of the genuine worth of the story as writing work, I urge the writer to proceed to a review of the story.
Last edited by LightBrigade on Sat May 26, 2007 8:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
User avatar
Site Regular
Site Regular
Posts: 446
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2005 4:17 pm
Location: Athens, Hellas, where myths live.


Postby LightBrigade » Sat May 26, 2007 8:08 pm

Normally, the programme we use to write anything on our computer, includes a spelling checking tool. Any such tool will turn “incased” to “encased”, “a six headed” to “ a six-headed”, and Line 18 “reveled” is “revealed”, for example. When we do not know if there is one, and if there is, how to energise it, we can always ask about it. It is unfair for one to ask for critique and expect the person who will do critique to do the odd writing work on behalf of the writer. Why should the person doing the critique do the writer’s work anyway?

Eliminating the use of Perfect tenses restricts the use of English by almost one third. No author needs a poor tool of expression. Line 18 : “He slept…” is “he had been sleeping…”.

Sequence of tenses is absolutely necessary. Line 25 “would recover” is Future In The Past. It promises to the reader what the reader is to meet _next_. But then Line 31 “stained” : if “stained” is the result of the recovery, you have to display these two statements in two paragraphs. Each paragraph is about ONE meaning ONLY. If it is not the result of the recovery, use another combination (sequence) of Past tenses. As it is, the reader is confused about the happenings in the story.

The position of Adverbs is after the Verb Object, normally. Emphatic usage will put adverbs of Manner in the Pre-Verb Position, which for the verb “to be” and all modal verbs is after the verb. Line 22: “were defiantly”.

A phrase is a total of words without a verb present. A sentence is a total of words with a verb present. A phrase before a sentence, is followed by a comma; so that the Verb Subject begins the message of the writer to the reader. Line 19 : “From his sleep, Ymir had fathered his children and started the rebirth of giants.” But it has to be of some deliberate significance to come before the Subject. What purpose is served here for the phrase “from his sleep” to be at the beginning?

Lines 19,20 and 21 : “From his sleep”, “from …” from…” : This is poetic climax. If you mean to make a climax, there has to be a peak, a summit, an epic culminating or an emotional outburst, for example. Or a purpose revealed, here, perhaps? If it is instinctive talent showing in the style of writing, it may be harnessed to serve you in making your writing powerfully penetrating. It can be harnessed by first realising what talent springs out, and then directing your pen to cast it over the reader – where your pen will be mightier than any sword.

As a writer dives deeper and deeper into the evolution of a story, the writer exposes the story omitting parts of it which already happened in the mind of the writer, only out of zeal to communicate and fever to create. The reader feels as he or she missed an episode then. And tends to feel lost. To watch out for such points, the writer observes they appear close together in the writing. Line 27 : “as had the rest”, Line 29 “enter the L world”, Line 31 : “for a single L” (is a single L important? WHY? : wonders the reader.)

I asked about English, and I would really like to know, if I may, because a devil is always perceived to be evil (Line 29), people are sound asleep not sound of a sleep (Line 15), something comes to a standstill, not to a stand still (Line eight), and further points down to the end of the posted work. A very apparent reason which leads one to ask about the matter, is also the use of the Apostrophe in the whole story. The information asked for is necessary for proper advice (critique).

What you mean by Line 21 “sons’…” (I think you meant “sons”), Line 27 : “Ymirs…” (I think you meant Ymir’s), is unclear. There are such points throughout the story. Particularly confusing is the use of the Apostrophe, the adjectival use of nouns as you use it (Line 26 “giants release”) and the genitive case as you use it (just very close by Line 30 “giants’…”).

I mentioned the usual phenomenon where we write in fever and miss to tell our readers _all_ we have thought about a matter we write about. Then the reader feels confused. If one can father children, one must have also at least “used” a mother, otherwise, we have to do with unique creatures of non-human powers. A giant may be one of such creatures. If a myth has it so in some tradition, perhaps we must _first_ mention the tradition and the myth, and then insert the element of that myth into our story. Otherwise, we talk to a reader about what we know but the reader is left without knowing about it. We do _not_ communicate with a reader then.
When people agree with me, I always feel that I must be wrong. -- Oscar Wilde --
User avatar
Site Regular
Site Regular
Posts: 446
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2005 4:17 pm
Location: Athens, Hellas, where myths live.

Return to SF/F Short Stories and Novel Excerpts

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest