“I have the fire. I have the force. I have the power to make my evil take its course.”
“Number of the Beast”
“So, what does this all mean?” asked Jennifer, looking down at her new friend. They had left the chapel in haste, heading back towards the thick stand of trees that concealed the Enchanter's work shed.
Maggie stopped in her tracks, looking anxious. "You're asking me this?" she asked, turning around and looking up into the ghost girl's eyes. "You tell me; you're a spirit. Have you ever seen or heard of anything like what happened back there when we put our hands together?"
“No, not like that.” replied Jennifer as she looked away for bit with a troubled expression. “Not that way in anyway.”
“But, remember the very first time we met back at the estate grounds?” asked Maggie as Jennifer looked back down at her.
“For a brief time, we did make actual physical contact with each other before!” reminded Maggie. “I was able to reach out, grab your leg and yank you down to the ground, even while you were invisible and floating right above me.”
Jennifer looked annoyed. “Of course, I remember that! It was similar of what just happened back there, but different at the same time in respects.” Jennifer shot back. “It freaked me out, especially after you and I were stuck together for a few seconds like glue and you left that…thing in me after I ran away!”
“What “thing”?” asked Maggie with curiously as she then narrowed her eyes at Jennifer.
“Ah man, that’s right.” admitted Jennifer as she smacked her forehead with her left hand.
“With all that’s been going on I never had the chance to tell you about the small weird magical ball of static that Tim found in my lower backside.”
"Your, ah, lower backside?" Maggie asked, trying to suppress a grin while Jennifer shot her a look.
“You couldn’t see this item inside you?” added Maggie as she pointed to Jennifer’s stomach. “I’m mean, come on. I can almost see right through you most of the time.”
“Somehow it was invisible even to me.” replied Jennifer in her defense. “But, Tim was able to sense it and pull it out of me and it was a rather uncomfortable experience too when he did I might add.”
“And Tim still has it, right?” asked Maggie with concern.
“Yup.” replied Jennifer bluntly. “Keeps it in an old oil lantern in his library back at his shop. Tim even said that the type of magic that made up the static ball was strange even to him.
Maggie is quiet for a few seconds as she moves her arms to across over her chest and looks down at herself in irritation as she thinks deeply about what Jennifer has just said to her.
Maggie then turns her head back as she beings to hear the loud sounds in a mix of laugher and cheering coming from the “party” that was going on back at Tim’s place.
Which was not too far off as she now sees a few other ghosts that were flying over the tree tops around the area.
One of them pretending to be driving a car while being drunk while another was dressed in an aviator’s uniform from World War One pretending that he was flying a plane and also intoxicated, until they crashed into each other and then laughed at their actions.
Maggie’s looks back at Jennifer again with an expression of how frustrated she has become not at Jennifer personally, yet at Tim for not just taken a moment to at least explain about the so-called; “magical ball” that she may have unintentionally left behind in the ghost-girl.
Maggie now storms off again and into the stand of trees. Jennifer meanwhile follows close behind her until they both re-emerged on the other side where Maggie is now greeted by something that instantly gave her an uncomfortable feel all over because now everyone she had met earlier this night are now completely staring right back at her as if they are in a kind of lock-on trance and not saying a single word.
In fact, the only sound that was heard was the “popping” noise coming from the large magical bonfire in the right corner while the old troll who was still sitting next to the large kegs of beer let out a soft belch before taking another sip of his ale.
Before Maggie could say a word, from out of nowhere Allen pops right up before her.
“’Villains!’” he yelled as he aggressively pointed to Maggie in an accusing matter who in turn jumped back with alarm as his blue hazel eyes appear to give off an eerie glow while the strange lights of the bonfire suddenly increased in size as the flames rose higher and hotter into the night sky behind him which only added in making him even the more terrifying behold.
“’Dissemble no more! I admit the deed! Tear up the planks! Here, here! It is the beating of his hideous heart’!”
“Whoa," said Jennifer, not bothering to keep the snark out of her tone. "Gnarly."
“Wonderful presentation!” said Tim as he clapped along with the others while he was still sitting in his Adirondack chair and enjoying his ale, while Sara was in one next to him savoring a milkshake that the old troll made for her.
“As an actor among other things you do, you still know how to knock it down. Maggie, I believe you recognized the story Allan was just doing?” asked Tim.
Maggie recognized the words to the story right away from “The Tell-Tale Heart” by Edgar Allan Poe, one of her favorite writers.
Of course, Allan here was not the real Edgar Allan Poe himself, he’s been dead for years, right?
Maggie was going to get to the bottom of this “Allen” before she was going to ask Tim about the other item.
“Alright, Tim.” demanded Maggie as she walked up in frustration to the magical enchanter, yet spoke in a low voice so the others would not hopefully hear her.
“What’s the deal with this guy? I know that he is not the real “Edgar Allan Poe”, I been a fan of his work for years. I do know he died back in the year 1849 in Baltimore. I’ve been to his grave site myself.”
Tim let out a sigh as he glances over to Maggie concern look on his face as he next scratches his thick dark beard.
“Alas, it is true.” explained Tim as both he and Maggie look over to where Allan is now having a happily conversation with Sara about another piece of Poe’s work.
“Of course, he is not the real Edgar. In fact, his real name is “Ogion” and he was once an apprentice of mine up to the late nineteenth century and he knew Edgar very well up to the last years of his death. Surprising, they were good friends.”
“They first met at a pub called; “The Black Swan” in Baltimore one night when Edgar was in a heated argument with some other writer’s work that he was reviewing at the time.” Tim explained.
“Ogion could tell that Edgar had a bit too much to drink and was able to stop the incoming fight by knocking the other ruled writer out cold with a sleeping spell when no one was looking and both made a quick exit.”
“Ogion who has already lived well over a century just made his way over to the United States from Wales when they first met. He was looking for a friend in this new country and it appeared that Edgar liked him for his knowledge in classic literary and he was great in acting out Shakespeare’s work. Though I don’t think Edgar ever really knew Ogion was a wizard’s apprentice.”
“Now the best of what I could put together myself.” said Tim as he continued on. “Something very terrifying happen just a few days before Edgar’s death.”
“In fact, whatever happened, it drove poor Ogion enough to erase most of his memories clean in his mind and to give up his role as my apprentice.”
“To this day he still portraying this strange role of Edgar Allan Poe’s personally. He even when so far to shapeshift his true form into looking like Edgar himself. It’s really a troubling mystery to even me.”
“Why is he here tonight?” asked Maggie. “Is this some kind of social call?”
“He comes back here time to time to check on me and I on him.” replied Tim. “But, also when he finds something that would get my interest.”
“Allen?” shouted Tim over to him. “Would you mind coming over here?”
Allen quickly made his way over to the two while tipping his hat again to Maggie.
“Yes?” he asked cheerfully.
“Would you mind showing Miss Llewelyn here the item you and I just discussed about a short time ago?” requested Tim.
“Of course.” Allen replies cheerfully again as he next takes his cane and makes three loud “taps” on a rock next to him which was the size of a bowling ball.
The gray and moss-covered rock moves back and forth a couple of time until it rolls away revealing a large hole that was covered by it.
Allen looks down into the hole and is greeted by a large blood-shot eye looking right at him as it next gives him a friendly <Wink> back.
“Oi!” cried out the voice belonging to Togs. “What can I do for you governor?”
“Would you mind tossing that lantern with the strange ball of lighting up here, lad?” asked Allen.
“But, there goes my light and the spiders, sir.” replied Togs with concern as he pointed behind him. “They are...big down here.”
“Not to worry.” says Allen as he pulls out a long road side flare that was uncommonly too large for his small pocket in his jacket and using some magic strikes it on as a bright red-hot flame quickly appeared at one end. “This should work, yes?”
“Indeed!” Togs cried out in delight as Allen drops the flare down to him through the hole as next an old-style railroad lantern comes flying up and Allen catches it mid-air. “Much oblige!”
Maggie looked over at the lantern with astonishment as she quickly studied the tightly compact spheroid of magical energy that was the size and shape of a golf-ball as it lightly jumps around while making cracked noises as it hits the red color globe of glass of the lantern itself.
Maggie is then drawn back to look down into the hole itself again as Togs spoke up once more.
“Come here, little spider - I've got something for you!” says Togs proudly as he holds up his battle ax in one hand. The flare in his other hand, however, illuminated the shiny black eyeballs of the spider sneaking up behind him - a spider roughly the size of a Volkswagen beetle.
The giant spider's multitude of eyes glowed red with reflected flare-light. A drop of venom rolled down one of its fangs, hovered at the sharp chitin tip, and then dripped to the cavern floor. Togs and the spider stared at one another, its pedipalps chewing at the air, considering a strike. Suddenly, the huge spider scuttled backwards, wheeled around, and went tearing down the tunnel away from Togs, chittering in fright.
“Come back here!” roared Togs, giving chase. “I’ll make spider stew out of you!”
“You do realize those road flares only last about thirty minutes or so, right?” says Maggie as she looks back up at Allen with a concern look. “What’s he going to do once it dies?”
“He’ll manage.” replies Allen with confidence. “He always does.”
“Oi, did you hear that brothers?” yelled out one of the dwarfs who overheard what Togs just said to his biker buddies. “’Spider stew!”
“That’s sounds grand!” called back another one as he starts up his Harley-Davidson’s gold-plated chopper. “I’m hungry!”
“Not only great to make, but hunt!” says another one as he starts his bike up as well with a roar. “Let’s go!”
“Get off your asses you bucket of lards!” orders the leader as he quickly slams down his ale. “Time to Rock and Roll good and hard!”
“Hey wait!” cries out two dwarfs in unison who just happen to be actual twin brothers. “We’re still working on our bike’s engines.”
Regardless of what the brothers just said, the rest of the pack of leather clad biker dwarfs started up their choppers within a loud “rubble!”
The dwarf leader with the gold-plated bike engages a strange burrow-like machine on the front wheel section of the bike itself while he drives over to where the hole was at.
He then next makes the large motorbike leap into the air and plunged into the hole as the “burrow machine” aggressively makes the hole itself just wide and large enough for him and his whole bike to dive right in while the rest of his gang followed behind him.
The last bike that followed was pulling a line which was attached to a large log as one of the dwarf twins who was sitting on it as if he was riding a horse while trying to start up his gas-powered chain saw.
“Hey, wait for us!” shouted the twin dwarf as his gas-powered chain saw sparks to life as he falls into the hole while his voice echoes from within the tunnel. “Spider stew…with dumplings!”
“With dumplings!” added his brother as he too jumps right into the hole behind him with a pair of large Cottage loaf breads that he just happened to grab off one of the nearby picnic tables.
“Right, and we’ll let those lads take care of that piece of nasty business.” said Tim as he waves his hands over large hole making the ground seal up around it until it was completely gone from view. “Whisky anyone?”
“Oh yes, please.” acknowledged Allen happily as he magically made a small shot glass appear in his free hand while Tim poured the bourbon into it.
“Is this whole damn place mad?” asked Maggie with disbelief out loud as she referred at what just happen around her in the last few minutes.
“We’re all mad here, my dear.” replied Jennifer jokingly as she flew right next to her with the biggest grin on her face Maggie has ever seen her do as the ghost-girl next slowly disappears away with only her toothy smile remaining.
Maggie gave Jennifer a look of mock suffering. “Stop that.”
“Sorry.” Jennifer said, still grinning like the Cheshire Cat.
“Tim.” requested Maggie as she pointed to the static ball within the lantern that Allen was still holding as he took a slip of his drink. “What is that thing?”
“I was hoping you could tell us.” replied Tim as he took the lantern from Allen. “This came from you after all and it was found in Jennifer’s ghostly essence.”
“She told me about that already.” explained Maggie as she pointed to the lantern. “And I never seen anything like that before, I didn’t even know I could do that.”
“Well my dear, I indeed have seen something like this before in my travels. Quite a few years ago in a small town in western Texas, in fact.” said Allen referring to the energy ball as his voice now became a serious tone.
“I found one just like this one not too far away from a house where a young woman died mysteriously where I was investigating something else at the time at another ranch house nearby.”
“Her body clearly showed the marks that she was strangled. Alas, the town’s Sheriff never found who did it. Actually, thinking back at that day, the one odd thing that was found scratched on the ceiling in the living room in the house….”
“There is no need for that next bit of information, Allen.” explained Tim as he quickly spoke-up. “It’s quite irrelevant at this time. Tell them about what you saw on the body itself.”
Both Maggie and Jennifer now lock their eyes on Allen with earnest as he spoke.
“No finger prints or any kind of hard or soft evidence for that matter was found at the murder site, it’s as if the poor child was suffocated by…a ghost itself. explained Allen as he then quickly glanced over to the ghost-girl. “No offense, young Jennifer.”
“None taken.” she quickly replied with a smile at the end.
“However, shortly after finding the strange item beating with the power of nonnative magic it dispersed into the air before I could exam it further.” added Allen.
“Allan told me about his discovery at one of our get together’ some time ago before we met the first time, Jennifer.” said Tim glancing over to the ghost-girl then to Maggie.
“In all my years in studying many kinds magical energies I never heard or saw anything this with this kind of frequency before as I did my own research on the one that you put into Jennifer here.”
“Tim summoned me here after he found yours, Maggie.” added Allen as he took the lantern back and point to the ball of energy. “And after studying this one, I’m quite confident they are both the same things.”
“So, what does it do exactly?” asked Maggie as she walked up and looked closer and the “ball” now as it now stops jumping around and starts to press against the glass where Maggie was looking at.
“I believe it does a few things.” explained Tim as he looked at the lantern. “For one, it seeks out and records certain other energy forces as if its programmed to do so and…this is the real oddy here. Every once in a while, it sends out a pulse, like it was trying to call somebody. Maybe even you.”
“Maybe not.” replied Maggie. “Are you sure this is…”
Without any warning, the energy sphere smashes through the magically enforced glass and before anyone could react, the ball of energy slams right into Maggie’s body with such force that she is knocked off her feet. She can feel herself falling backwards as everything round her goes dark and silence.
As suddenly as it had happened, the blackness that enveloped Maggie was replaced with a blinding white light. She raised a hand to shield her eyes and -
- and the arm before her face wasn't from her normal, slender form. Veins and muscle rippled as, confused, the goth girl clenched and unclenched her fist. She looked down and the rest of her was similar - tall, powerful, rippling with muscle under her pale skin and completely naked.
“When did this happen?” she said out loud as she looked over herself then all around. “I definitely don’t remember changing and where is everyone?”
Maggie looks around again and all she could see was that she was in some kind…of space, a strange void of some kind. There was not anyone or thing around, everything was the same color which was a grayish tone and she has no idea where the surrounding light was coming from.
Then without any warning right next to her, a kind of strange looking door appeared which looked like to be made of light itself as it opened up. Maggie’s eyes became wide as she jumped back a few feet and she got herself into a defense stance as a strange kind of humanoid-like creature which also appeared to be made of the same light comes out and steps right up to Maggie. It had no facial features as it looked right at Maggie as it gave the impression like it was studying her closely.
As best Maggie could tell, this being of light was the same height as she was, yet there was no way of telling if that was true because there was nothing around her to make scale of.
“Well, aren’t you something to behold at?” the creature of light said as it took one of its arms and reached for Maggie’s face where she leaned back away from its hand.
“Who or what are you?” she asked with concern and a face to match.
“You do not know of the one who created you.” it asked as looked over Maggie again. “Or should I say, the one who created you what you are today. I have to be honest here, I’m really getting good at this.”
“You?!” exclaimed Maggie in disbelief as she pointed to herself. “You…”
“You can call me “Mistress”.” said the creature of light. “I know my voice sounds different than you heard in the past, I know you do have questions. But, this I not the time nor place. I want to meet you as well.”
“Where?” asked Maggie as she narrowed her eyes.
“You’ll know where to go.” added the Mistress. “The instincts in getting there are already planted in the back of your mind. Just follow and trust them. Fly and migrate, Maggie. Fly, and migrate...”
Maggie does not say a word as she watches the creature of light turn back around to go into the door. As the door begins to close, the creature then calls back out to her.
“Oh, by the way.” it says. “Bring the spirit Jennifer and your friend Sara as well. They amuse me.”
"Wait, what th-"
The next thing Maggie realized is that whole space she is currently in becomes flooded over within a bright white light. In reaction she closed her eyes tightly.
The next time Maggie opened them back up, she was looking up at the large wooden ceiling inside Tim’s shield.
“What happened?” Maggie asked as she closed her eyes for again second while putting her hand on her forehead from the pounding headache she now had. Her hand was once more gracile, her body slender and short.
When she opened her eyes again, she now had the ghastly-looking spirit known as; “Keeper of the Graves” looking right down at her just a few inches from her face as he hovered right above her.
Maggie slightly recoiled herself deeper into the pillow that her head was resting on as his flame-like eyes within the sockets of his skull stared down at her while he placed his large scythe next to the bed she was currently laying now as it exposed a boney arm from under his dark raggedy cowl.
Maggie stared back, one part fearful and three parts confused. "Um. Hello?"
“It appears you are among the living once again.” said Keeper within chilly tone as Maggie could actually feel the icy and pungent smell of death in his breath.
“Such a pity it is to see that. I was looking forward of you joining our community. Of course, once your own spirit does appear where we lay your body down for its final rest. I do know of a nice freshly dug grave plot near-by to show you.”
The creature smiled ghoulishly, and moved a bony finger to gently stroke her cheek. "Do you wish to do so still?”
“Shit!” cried the girl, instinctively scrambling out of the large bed and dashing to the other side of the room. Pressed against the wall, she stared wide-eyed as a scared cat.
“That’s enough, Keeper.” ordered Tim firmly who was sitting in his Lazy Boy chair at the other side of the room as it put down his book which was titled; “Magic Potions and Dark Beers. How they can work together.” He then next took another sip of his pint of bitter. “You have your patrols to do on these grounds still, yes?
Keeper does not say another word as he stared coldly at Tim for a few seconds as he then grabs his scythe and then swiftly flies out the shield up through the old gray stone fireplace.
“He’s still not happy with you after you stole Jennifer from here under his watch.” explained Tim. “Are you alright? You gave us all quite the scare back there, which is really something in a place like this. I’m sure you can understand.”
Maggie was doing her best to calm her breathing. Her heart was pounding in her throat. "W-what happened?"
“That little sphere of energy leaped right back into you, hard. You passed out after it knocked you off your feet and then slammed right on to your back.” explained Tim.
“At first, I thought you were knocked out cold, but after I saw your eyes roll to the back of your head and your heart stopped, I had to work fast.”
“Fast at what?” asked Maggie as she rubbed her chest which felt tight and sore for some reason.
Tim held up both of his hands and a couple of small bolts of lightning jumped between them.
“Works just as well if not better than a defibrillator.” said Tim with a smirk. “Plus, I used a healing spell afterwards."
To Maggie's confused expression, he added, "Do you know how difficult it is to circumvent your body's natural impulse to simply absorb magical energy? It's like trying to coat a hot coal in lighter fluid and NOT have it go up." He flexed his old fingers, provoking another spark to jump.
"The magic wants so badly to just zip right in and light the furnace." he shrugged. "I assume that would accomplish the same thing as a healing spell, but I noticed you forgot a change of clothes."
“You zapped me?!” Maggie asked incredulously, patting down her black T-shirt. She looked up and raised an eyebrow in accusation. “Did you take off my shirt?”
Tim held up his hands in the universal "whoa there" sign. “Relax, I’m a professional here," he explained. “Well. I may be a dirty old man, but not that kind of dirty old man.”
“Son of bitch!” snarled the goth girl, pouting and tightly wrapping her arms around her chest.
“Been called that too.” added Tim. “So, what happened to you?”
Agitated, Maggie placed a couple of fingers on each temple, rubbing at her pounding skull. “I…I can’t explain it.”
"Can't?" Tim asked. "Or won't?"
Maggie glared at him. “Both!” she shot back. “Where’s Jennifer and Sara?”
“Outside.” replied Tim. “They are of course concerned for you, but, I told them that you needed rest.”
A memory stirred within the girl's mind, half-remembered and amorphous as a dream. She blinked in confusion. "I...I have to...get somewhere?" she said, finishing the sentence as if asking a question. "Something's telling me I can't rest..."
Tim watched her, unwilling to interrupt.
"Fly and migrate," Maggie repeated, rubbing at her skull with the heel of her hand. "To where?"
"Hey," came a soft voice. Maggie looked up, squinting her eyes against the migraine. In the doorway, her soft-spoken friend Sara waited for her, looking anxious. Behind her floated the ghostly Jennifer Porterfield, dwarfing the blonde by comparison.
Maggie took a few deep breaths, trying to remember what the creature told her.
"...Tijuana?" she asked. It had just come to her.
Sara blinked. "Mexico?" she asked. “Why go there all of a sudden?”
Maggie slowly shook her head. "I don't know. When that thing jumped into me...I saw something, it told me to..."
Maggie trailed off, and let her shoulders slump. “I'm sorry. I'm trying but...I really can’t explain right now.” she tried to explain while still looking sheepish.
"I do know you two are supposed to come as well." Maggie added, looking from Sara to Jennifer.
“What?” protested Jennifer, and floated right through Sara, who reacted by getting a chill all over her. The tall specter came right up to Maggie and folded her arms. “Are you for real, girl? I just can’t leave my area. Most of us ghosts can’t wander too far away from where we perished."
Maggie looked tired and her head was pounding. "One of those rules you ghost must go by?” she asked, flatly.
“Yes!” both Jennifer and Sara say in unison. The volume made Maggie wince.
“I might be able to help out with that situation.” Tim spoke up as he walked into one of the other rooms then came out with another old fashion style railroad lantern, only this one had a clear globe lens. “This must be “Lantern day” because the way they are being used tonight.”
“What’s that one for?” asked Maggie.
“With this lantern, I can put a spell on it that will allow Jennifer’s spirit to travel in it without violating her ghostly rules.”
Sara's eyes widened. “Oh, you’re going to make it into a “ghost-lamp”?” she asked, coming up to the lantern and running her fingers over the old metal. “That’s so cool, I’ve heard of them, but never in action!”
“Whoa, whoa, whoa!” protested Jennifer as she moved up next to Sara and pointed to the lantern’s glass globe. “One: I don’t like the idea of being bottled up like some kind of freaken’ genie. Two: How do you expect me to squeeze in there without getting all deformed up and the like? I hate that.”
Tim held up an index finger to Jennifer. “One,” he replied. “You’re going to have to put up with the genie part. Sorry."
He held up a second finger. "Two. You know as a ghost you can change your size very easily. How many times have I caught you making yourself at least twice your size for some reason or other. Like the time, you scared those two kids who were hanging around your grave site?" he asked, with a knowing look
Jennifer blushed, her ghostly cheeks turning more opaque. “They were not just “hanging around” my grave,” she defended, glaring at Tim. “They were making out right above my freaking coffin! I was simply furious, I still am when I just think about that every time!”
“You could be the size of a small doll?” said Sara as a smile came along her face. “Oh, you would be so cute.”
Maggie gave Jennifer a tired-looking smirk, happy to have the attention off her for a bit. "Hey, just like in the chapel, only, who'd be the little girl this time?"
“Shove it.” Jennifer groused, looking embarrassed and disdainful.
“It’s the only quick way at this time we can do this, Jennifer.” explained Tim. “Other complex spells take more time and work.”
“Tijuana is pretty far away from here.” said Sara as she took a sniff of the oil lantern. “Plane is the quickest, but how do we get around the TSA with the lantern that still has the smell of fuel on it? You know they will never allow something like on board a plane in this post September 11th world today.”
“What did happen on “September 11th, by the way?” asked Jennifer with a puzzled look on her face. “That date strangely keeps coming up from time from time as of late while I’ve been hanging out in the city of Necropolis.”
“Uh, I’ll explain later.” replied Sara, uncertainly.
“Plane?” spoke up Tim as he grabbed his magical staff which was hanging on the wall and spun it around as the magical crystals began to glow. “We don’t need no stinking plane! I’ll simply transport you there, but I don’t give flyer miles you understand.”
Sara brightened up. "That sounds fun!"
“Yeah.” added Maggie with apprehension as she felt a bit of a “magical buzz” course through her from Tim's latent magic. At such low levels, all it did was highlight her headache. "Lovely."
“It will take some time to create the spells for not just for the travel, but for the lantern as well, best you all get some rest and prepare yourselves.” He looked at Jennifer. "Well. At least two of you can get some rest."
Jennifer groaned like a daughter whose dad just cracked the worst joke ever. "See you guys later." The click of her Walkman preceded Pat Benatar's "Shadows of the Night" as she faded away. Just before her face vanished entirely, she gave the room a quick wink - and was gone.
“Where did she go?” asked Maggie as she looked around as she and the others could no longer feel her presence. “Will she be back?”
“Who knows?” replied Tim. “She has her own ways after all.”
“So, when do we leave?” asked Sara eagerly.
“At least three days from now.” explained Tim. “It should be safer at that point.”
“Three days?!” exclaimed Maggie frustration. “I’ll take my chances taking the plane myself, I’ve got a Passport already!”
“Please understand young lady the grand size of the situation here.” explained Allen with caution.
“Halloween is tomorrow. A great deal of many, many strong magical events are going to be happening all around the planet during that time. Both good and evil magic, with all this “magical static” in the air, spells can accidently intertwine with each other. There can be a great risk in the act of creating “Travel-Tunnel Spell” for such a long distance.”
“It can become corrupted somehow and if something does go wrong to even where the location algorithm is disturbed by the slightest. All of you could end up in a totally different location on the planet or worst you could end up being lost in within the magical realm forever. Trust me, it’s a fate worse than death.”
“Maggie, please understand.” requested Sara as she grabbed her hands and points to a few of the bruise marks on her body still from the last fight. “It may be best to wait. Besides you’re are still healing up both inside and outside.” Where ever we are going, you may want to be a peak condition to face anything that comes our way.”
Maggie looked chastened. "Let’s go, I do need the sleep. I can wait a bit longer, even if I don't want to.”
“Mmmm.” replied Tim as he stroked this thick beard. “This power that beats within Maggie is amazing, yet troublesome alright.”
“You will wait your turn, young lady.” politely ordered the military-ghost to Maggie and Sara who was dressed in an army uniform from the World War Two area. “Colors is about to commence.”
Maggie at this point was just tired of waiting to get going to her destination in order to have many questions answered about her powers and about the one who is called; “Mistress”. Even though at the same time she was not comfortable at just simply plunging into the unknown like this, she knew better.
However, these new feelings other than the ones about Jennifer have started to stir inside her with robust at times. Especially, in these last few days after she contacted that “person” that calls herself; “Mistress”. Some anew deep within her was now beginning to respond back and maybe its reaching out to touch her.
“Colors!” shouts out another military ghost who was a Marine Sargent standing right by the cemetery’s main flagpole.
The two oldest military ghosts who were in uniforms from the Civil War area escort one of Tim’s assistant groundskeepers as he walks up to the pole and attaches the American flag to the line then raises brisk fully while many of the ghosts who showed up were either once active Military or Veteran saluted the flag while one ghost played on a bugle.
“Carry on!” shouted the Marine again as they finished the ceremony.
Maggie and Sara then watched as many of the ghosts went back to their graves for the day as the sun began to rise.
As they walked on, it wasn’t long until they spotted both Tim and Allen waiting for them outside the shied itself.
As the Goth-girl looked around the area, she just happens to catch Jennifer materializing right by the shed’s doorway.
She then bent over with most of her ethereal hair flung over her head covering her face as she ran her hands through at combing it. Jennifer then flings her head back and all of her hair then flows smoothly then evenly to her backside as if the ghost herself was underwater.
“By the way, Maggie?” asked Tim as he was starting to charge up his staff. “Did you happen to enjoy yourself some way the other night here?”
“The only thing missing was a bunch of skeletons dancing around and singing the song; “Time Warp” as if they were extras in the; ““Rocky Horror Picture Show”.” grumbled Maggie.
“Oh, that’s next weekend.” Tim quickly added.
““It’s a jump to your right.”” sang out Jennifer as she floated to the right.
““With your hands on your hips”.” added Sara as if on cue.
“Okay, okay, cut it out, you two.” Maggie waved a hand at Sara. “What the crap has gotten into you lately?”
“Me!” shouted Jennifer happily.
“As for you.” said Allen as he held up the lantern to the ghost-girl. “Jennifer, if you please?”
“Aww, alright.” grumbled Jennifer as she makes herself smaller, down to the size of just over seven inches and floats into the lantern itself as Allen taps the glass-globe in order to engage the spell. “This still sucks.”
Allen then hands the now spell-powered lantern to Sara who then looks at the tiny ghost and smiles. Jennifer on the other hand brings both of her arms across her chest and looks away with a frustrated expression on her face.
“Maggie.” said Tim as he pulled out a small black leather pouch with strange runes written on it from his coverall pocket and holds it out to Maggie. She takes it and sees that was similar to the one she already had attached to her belt. “I know we’ve had our displeasures between us. But, just like the magical items you carry in your pouch, inside this one is a very powerful item that I came across back when I was in Egypt many years ago. It might come in handy when you need it.”
“Aww, I didn’t know you cared.” replied Maggie while sounding sarcastic.
“I don’t really about you.” admitted Tim as he pointed to Jennifer. “I just want you to get her home safely.”
Maggie gives back a look in disappointment at Tim’s words, who gives a smile instead back.
“I’m kidding, I’m kidding.” he said with reassurance. “I want you all to be safe and get home. Are you ready? Now, I forgot to say this earlier, but sometimes time itself might be displaced due to the distance of the spell. Now are you ready?”
“Let’s do it!” replied Sara anxiously.
“Um, what’s that about time again?” asked Maggie with concern. She felt her cheeks flush with heat, the rush of magic swirling through the air.
Reflexively, she mentally clamped down on the furnace within her. There was a lot of energy collecting here, enough to make her grit her teeth as she focused on not absorbing it.
With that both Tim and Allen together start making several hand gestures as Tim takes his staff and swings it through the air as it appears to make a slice straight in the air itself. It then as it peals away and a swirling tube of light if formed.
“Go now!” order Tim.
Maggie runs right in with Sara right behind her still holding on to the lantern, as soon as they were in, the magical tunnel closes right behind them.
“You know this is a trap, do you not?” questioned Allen with concern.
“Of course, I know that! But, truly what choice do we have really in all this?” asked Tim. “If they don’t confront this force now, the girls may not be powerful enough later. There is simply no better time, but now.”
“It’s still has its dangers.” added Allen.
The next thing Maggie realized is the wild sensation of falling through the air while tumbling at the same time for a about a second until landing into a pile of dark soil in the back on a stake truck that also had large bed of flowers as well that were called; “Cempasuchil” which were a type of Mexican marigolds.
As she now struggles to stand up right she falls again into the bright orange flowers, which did manage to break her fall this time.
She then jumps out of the truck and on to the dirt ground, she still felt somewhat lightheaded after that trip, it was not only hard to think straight, yet her ears rang slightly.
The Goth girl then looks around to scan the area hoping to get her bearings at where she now is at which turned out to be a dimly lit alleyway as the sound of loud festival music playing and people cheering could be hear everywhere as it reflected off the tall building’s walls as the smell of spicy cooked food filled her nose.
Maggie then looked down the alleyway to the source of the music to see that it opened out to a street, she was about to take a step until she now realizes that someone was not here.
“Aww, shit.” she said with concern as she looked around again. “Where’s Sara and Jennifer? Did they make it?”
As if on cue, the emergency door at a hotel behind her suddenly swing opens, she turns to see Sara running out of the door with the lantern still in her hand as an angry man yelling in Spanish shuts the door behind her.
“Lo siento. Yo lo siento!” cries Sara in Spanish back at the man. “Shit, my Spanish still sucks!”
“What happened?” asked Maggie as she ran up to her. “Did you end up someplace else?”
“Yeah.” admitted Sara as she held up the lantern with Jennifer still in it, who did not look happy.
“We both landed in that dude’s bedroom.” explained Jennifer. Sara landed on the bed right next to his drunk, naked and very ugly girlfriend…while I landed on a coffee table.”
“Be lucky that the globe glass didn’t break.” said Maggie as she noticed that a strange whitish powder lightly now coated parts of the lantern, almost looked like sugar powder. She leaned closer to inspect it until Jennifer spoke up again.
“The real reason he was pissed off was because the lantern landed right of a pile of cocaine that looked like he was in the middle of “cutting” on a mirror in the middle of the table. Guess he was getting ready for a big party.”
Maggie quickly backs away and looks right at the tiny Jennifer in the lantern with a raised eyebrow.
“You know about cutting cocaine?” she asked.
“I grew-up in the 1980’s, Mags.” Jennifer replied with sarcasm. “Not the 1880’s. You learn a lot while watching “Miami Vice” on Friday nights. You weren’t cool at school on Monday if you didn’t watch “Miami Vice” and talked about it.”
“Let’s just go you two.” requested Sara as she pointed to the same opening in the alleyway.
As the three of them walked into the busy street, they soon realized that this whole place was a busy market area. Everywhere you looked people where ether selling or buying goods for the Day of the Dead festival in the city of Tijuana, Mexico.
Items like flowers, food, candles, sugar skulls and of course Tequila. There was even a rock band playing music as a few couples where dancing to the lively tunes. Some were even wearing the traditional costumes that where part of the event, right down to the colorful face painted skulls.
The three girls start to make their way through the heavy crowds as Maggie led on. She still has no real idea where she was going. Yet, at the same time she feels that somehow someone was guided her deep within her own subconscious as if holding her own hand. Until she quickly comes to a dead stop which make Sara do so as well as they both spot something together at the same time.
It took a moment for Jennifer to see through the crowds of people and as well understand why the two stopped the way they did and it became clear.
Two men, or at least that’s what they appeared to be suddenly materialized and stood right before them blocking their path at going down the street any further.
Both stood well over six feet tall and largely built in the muscle department, even though their custom-made business suits hid their bulk well. However, the colors of the suits themselves was strange at that.
One had a suit that appeared to be made of a fabric that gave it a deep blue to it, while the other was a deep red, almost crimson like. Both of their hair was a smooth black that was combed back and was worn in the style called; “Chonmage”, much like the same way Sumo Wrestlers wear theirs. However, the one thing that did stand out the most of the two was they both wore masks. However, not like the painted skull ones worn for “Dia de los Muertos”, instead they were both wearing the tradition masks that are used in the Japanese theater known as “Noh” that resemble of the Yokai demon known as; “Oni”. The masks not only covered their faces, yet a slight portion of their heads a well.
“I think we should go.” said Sara. “I’m getting a bad vibe here.”
“Yeah.” added Jennifer. “Me too.”
Maggie on the other hand stood fast, even as the one dressed in red started to walk up right to her. The girls started to cautiously take a couple of steps back until they “bumped” into the one dressed in blue which somehow is now behind them.
“Yameru!” ordered the one in red to the girls as he held up his right arm out to them.
“He means; “Stop!”” replied the blue man to the girls as he looked down at them. “English, brother.”
“Bah!” grumbled the red one in protest as walked up and he loomed over the three. “I will only speak that backwards tongue of yours just so we can leave this place, being around all these puny humans sickens me. You, girl! You are Maggie, are you not?”
“I am.” Maggie spoke up with uncertainty as she tried to look right into the eyes of the large man which could not be seen behind the mask. “And two you are?”
“Who we are as of now is not important.” replied the red one as he now held up his right index finger which appeared to have a sharp claw at the end instead of a human finger nail. “But, you can call me, Mr. Red.”
“And I, Mr. Blue.” added the other one as he took a light bow before them. “You will come with us. We will take you to her.”
““Her” as in who?” asked Maggie. “The Mistresses?”
“Yes.” replied Mr. Blue bluntly. “She wants to see all of you.”
“Who?” asked both Sara and Jennifer in unison.
“And, where is she?” asked Maggie again. “And how are you going to take us?”
“Same way you all got here.” said Mr. Red as he snaps his fingers. “Of course.”
“Ah, Maggie?” requested Sara as she could feel inside her that something was not right.
Before she could realize what was going on, the ground under their feet opens up and all three of them fall down into another “Travel Tunnel” as Sara lets out a small cry.
“Aww, shit!” cries out Jennifer as the lantern she is still in starts to spin like top. “Not again!”
“Well, hot demon damn.” admitted Mr. Blue. “That was much easier unlike in the past with the other ones. Are we good or what?”
“Only shows that this “Maggie” is truly a neophyte to her powers.” acknowledged Mr. Red abruptly. “She is nowhere close to our own master. Should be easy pickings. As for this Maggie decision in coming here, it was foolish.”
“Not as if she really had a choice in the matter.” added Mr. Blue. “It is her destiny, just like the others, no?”
Before Mr. Red could answer the question, the two strange men finally take notice that it has now become unsettlingly quiet as all of the involuntary spectators are staring awkwardly at the two after seeing what just happened to the girls.
Mr. Red turns slowly to face the crowd then speaks in English very calmly at first to them; “Oh, how rude of us. Thank you all for your wonderful cooperation here. NOW SCRAM, YOU HAIRLESS APES!!”
Both of the men’s eyes began to glow in a fiery red behind their masks as they let out together very powerful and terrifying ferocious roars which shakes the very ground and surrounding buildings making all the people flee for their lives.
“Diablo!” some of the people yell as they ran away in fright while others yelled “Monstruo!”
Mr. Blue enjoys low chuckle as he watches the people run away like mad as Mr. Red begins to opens up another Travel Tunnel spell, then turns back to his brother.
“Let’s blow.” says Mr. Red within a grunt as they both walk into the tunnel before it closes right behind them.
Maggie slowly opens her eyes, let’s out a moan as her puts her hands on her head as it feels worst now as she briskly sits up from lying on her back. She then takes notice that she was on a dirty cement floor in what appeared to be a large heavy machine shop style building with just a few small windows that showed that it was night time already.
“How long was I out?” she asked out loud as she looked around for a door. “It was late afternoon last time I checked.”
“At least four hours.” said another voice that came behind her. “You passed out soon after you emerged from the travel tunnel and landed on the floor, quite hard too. That’s understandable for one who’s new to using such a magical travel device, but then again Maggie. You are new to a lot of things, aren’t you?”
Maggie turned around to the source of the voice.
A woman sitting in an old wooden folding chair with her arms folded crossed her chest and one leg resting over the other. It was difficult at first to make much out of her because of the way the only light on shown down above her gave a silhouette-look in appearance. The woman then stands up, throws her shoulder length hair behind her back and starts to walk up to Maggie on bare feet.
As she steps closer to Maggie, more of her facial features are revealed from the shadows that that were once covered in darkness. She was a young woman, maybe as old as Maggie was, had almost the same petite figure as Maggie’s own body, yet she could tell that this girl was slightly taller than her. The girl’s hair was a dark auburn color, her skin was fair in complexion, brown eyes and natural lips. She wore a pair of tight acid jeans and a dark blue T-shirt.
“You are Maggie Llewellyn?” asks the girl as she takes her last steps then stops just short of Maggie. “Right?”
“If I am?” she replies carefully.
With that the girl just smiles and holds up her right arm which had a strange looking arm bracelet at the end of it. She then shakes it back and forth a few times while making a few quick gestures with both hands.
The wooden chair that the girl was sitting on earlier now takes on a life of its own as it folds up, flies into the air, swoops around Maggie. Before she could react, the chair opens back up and scoops her up making sit down as next a good length of wire rope off a large wooden spool in a nearby workstation flies through the air and wraps tightly around the Goth-girl’s body and the chair itself, making it impossible to move.
“Comfy?” asks the young woman as she looks over Maggie with a smile while making sure the wire was secured to the chair so she cannot escape it and that Maggie could not reach her small leather bag that held her magical power sources. Maggie gives back an expression on her face tells that she was not; “Comfy”.
The small woman then does something next that totally surprised Maggie as she takes her hands and puts both of Maggie’s legs together. Next the woman spreads her own legs and sits on top of Maggie’s lap.
The woman then takes both of her hands and runs them through Maggie’s short hair as she sniffs it, then leans in, takes her tongue and licks Maggie’s neck on its right side who in turn makes a cringed face at being so.
“Ahh, you smell and taste so ripe with the power in you.” said the woman within a swoon as she licked Maggie’s cheek passionately once more. “So, delectable.”
“Get off of me!” demanded Maggie as she tries to push her off. “Who the hell are you?”
“Who I am I, you ask?” asked the woman as she now stands back up with her legs still spread between Maggie’s own as she again runs her hands well through Maggie’s own hair as the sound and ionic-like ozone smell of what appear to be static electricity came from it. She then moves her hands down on Maggie’s shoulders and rubs them for a bit.
“Perhaps, this will give you an idea?” she added as she slowly swings her head back as new sounds begin to fill the air. “We are in a way, sisters. Even though we are not related by blood.”
With curiosity Maggie glances down at the woman’s already snug acid wash jeans as she sees and hears them begin to tighten up even more to the point of becoming a second skin on the young woman’s body as the muscles of her own legs are now appearing to be becoming larger in density while at the same time they begin to lengthen.
The very threads to the jeans began to moan under increasing strain, until they easily snap away showing off her soft alabaster skin bulging from underneath them as the jean’s main button is snapped off and its zipper began to fail one spoke at a time at trying in vain to stay closed.
“Yes, yes.” cried the woman out softy as her whole body now begins to speed up in its growth in size and development as it increases in muscle mass and height. “More.”
She then takes both of her hands, moves them over her t-shirt where her small breasts were at. She fondles and squeezing them as her harden nipples were now protruding underneath the cloth itself.
“Is this ringing any bells here?” asked the woman in a sexual way as she glanced down at her.
Maggie is just speechless at what she is seeing as she then witnesses the woman’s own bust grow two sizes larger in just a few seconds while at the same time the muscles underneath them pushed out her already impressive bust even more.
The woman then takes both of her hands and easily makes some small tears at the neck section of the shirt allowing her bust to fill more outward as they make the tear even wider. Her bust still continued to swell larger and firmer as she grows a few inches taller at the same time. Next, she takes her arms and flexes them once as the muscles shift around forming a well-defined softball size bicep in both of them.
She then looked at both of her arms and laughs at them as she flexes once more making them become double-sized biceps destroying her sleeves completely as her skin became tauter as her pumping blood veins were becoming more apparent all over her growing form.
Next she arched her back tearing up most of the front her shirt in the process as one tear shoots straight down the middle of the shirt itself as it exposes her impressive athletic-style six pack of abdomens and frim breasts as they jut out ever so slightly from escaping from their confinement within the shirt itself.
Her jeans then burst open in multiple tears as the muscles under the fabric quickly exploded in power while her glutes harden like rocks and swollen in size.
“Think that’s something?” asks the woman between a lustful moan and pleasurable breaths as she sharply glances down at Maggie. “I’m not done yet.”
The woman next takes a couple of quick deep breaths as she tilt’s her head back while raising her arms over her head as she makes her hands into tight fists. Takes in a deep breath of air as she starts to grow taller and taller until she is over fifteen-feet in height while her muscular bulk increases as well.
What of left of her clothes ripped and shredded away like tissue-paper. Maggie squinted and blinked as the tattered remains of the other girl's undergarments fluttered down and alighted upon her face.
“Oh, I’m sorry.” says the woman sincerely in a now deeper and robust voice as she carefully removes the cloth with her large fingers allowing Maggie to see her as she stood back up to her new full height looking over her large firm breasts while pinching and pulling her erected left nipple. Her now longer fuller hair on of her head just brushes against the metal ceiling as her skin lightly glisten from the overhead workshop light from her freshly exposed sweat.
Maggie was now completely beside herself. It had been like watching a mirror-like reflection of herself when she went through her own transformations into her own amazon-like self. Yet, this strange woman was now so much bigger than Maggie has ever achieved.
“My name is Nora.” said the woman finally as she glared down again at the now much smaller Maggie who was still bonded firmly to her chair.
Nora then slowly moved both of her mighty hands over to her new robust hips while she made a wicked smile down her.
“And I am your Nemesis!” she then added.
Maggie, skeptical, raised an eyebrow. "My nemesis?"
“Don’t recognize my name, do you?” asked Nora with disappointment as she then continued on.
“I was hoping the Mistress would have told you by now. I do have another name. It was given to me by the media years ago. I’ve been called; “Twenty-eight. The serial killer”.
“I’m very sure Jennifer has even heard of me, I would like to see her too. She and I have so much catching up to do. But, first lets you and I have some fun, hmm?”
End Part Eleven.