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The Pendant of Light

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Long ago, back in ancient times, in the vast lands of Asia, stood a kingdom. It was called the Starian Kingdom. It was named this, because the King who ruled over it was the Prince of the Moon, who left the Moon Kingdom to create his own empire. He was a mighty and powerful King, ruling his kingdom with a firm and iron grip. Though his Kingdom was small, he was going to change all that, so the Starian Kingdom would be known throughout the Earth as the greatest Kingdom.

By his rightful side, was his loyal Queen. His Queen was a beautiful woman, with gentleness and kindness embedded in her loving soul. She would open her doors to anyone giving shelter and food to those who asked and needed it. She would give warmth and comfort to those who were down on their luck, always helping her people. Though beautiful and kind, she was also wise beyond her years and believed in Justice despising wrong doings and crimes of any kind. She was loved by all her people, but mostly by her King who she dearly loved too.

As his kingdom grew, so did the King’s greed and lust for ultimate power. He soon began planning battle strategies to conquer other kingdoms and far off lands unknown to the world, but just waiting to be discovered and claimed. He had the best warriors recruited in his army, making it the most powerful army throughout the country. Kingdoms would bow down in fear, praying the Starian King would not come to take away their land and their homes. The King’s dream was so close to coming true. He wanted to prove his worth and show the world, he was the mightiest ruler known to man.  He could have anything he wanted.

If he only knew what was to happen next.

One day a stranger wandered into the kingdom. He wore shredded ragged clothes underneath an old musty cloak, with the hood covering his entire head, so you could not see his face. He treaded through the green plentiful country side of the kingdom, to its crowded and busiest streets till he finally reached the palace gates.

“What do you want?” asked one of the guards.

“I want to see the King.” replied the stranger. So they bid him in leading him into the royal court, at the far end of the room, stood two giant thrones. Sitting on them were the Starian King and Starian Queen.

“What is your purpose for coming here?” asked the King.

The stranger bowed his head. “My purpose, great King, is to help you what you eagerly seek.”

“And what is it I seek so eagerly?” questioned the King, eying the stranger with suspicion.

The stranger just had to say one word that would end the King’s suspicion. “Power.”

The King gasped, but the stranger continued on: “Oh great King, you seek ultimate power. You seek greatness and wealth beyond your dreams. You want all those who are under your rule to bow down at your very feet. To show fear and greatness to the most powerful of Emperors and Kings known to us! ”

With every word and praise coming from the stranger’s mouth, the King’s excitement and anticipation grew, but not the Queen’s. She felt dread and uneasiness coming from within her heart, by the stranger and his promises.

“Yes!” cried the King. “That is exactly what I want! That is what I desire so!”

“To have all the power that you seek, I will help you…” said the strange man, the atmosphere becoming darker and more sinister, “…for a price. Will you do anything to achieve this great power?”

“Yes! Anything!”

“Even…sacrifice everything? The one thing you hold most dear, the closet to your heart?” questioned the stranger, with an evil twinkle in his eyes which made the Queen shiver in fear.

“I would.” said the King.

“That is all I needed to know!” yelled the stranger, throwing his hands into the air, calling on the forces of Darkness that surrounded them and the entire kingdom. The evil one removed his cloak to reveal himself in his true form

“You!’ cried out the King, as his wife clung to him in fear of the situation that lay before them.

“Yes, it is I! The greatest Sorcerer of them all!” laughed the evil one. His red eyes, filled with wickedness, staring at the King. “Now I will grant your wish! You and your kingdom will have great power…as my slaves for all eternity!” The Sorcerer laughed evilly as he casted his dark magic on the entire kingdom. “Monsters that will serve under my rule! I will be the greatest ruler of all of China!”

His dark magic was working, as he could hear the screams coming from the people. They were slowly and painfully turned into monsters. Death defying warriors of Darkness. Bound to their monstrous forms till the end of time. The Sorcerer was about to cast another spell…till he noticed something. Something was off. He watched as some of the people were not turning into monsters of Darkness. They were not bound by Darkness but by…

“Light?!’ he yelled out. “How can this be? How can they have turned into creatures of the purest light? This I cannot allow! I will destroy all of those who are not bound into darkness.” He hissed.

“Stop!”

Silence was cast out through the entire palace, to all parts of the kingdom. The Dark one growled. “Who dares to try and stop me?!”

“I do!’

The Evil Sorcerer looked to see the Starian Queen walk up to him. Determination and bravery written all over her face, as she looked at the all mighty dark one. The King and his Kingdom were in shock: Their Queen was glowing!

“Oh Great Sorcerer,” began the Queen, “you will spare my Kingdom, my people, and my husband from this horrible fate.”

The evil one smirked. “Is that so? Your husband is son to the Moon, the rulers of Night. He is bound by Darkness as should be his people.” He looked all around him,” However…only half of them are while the other half is Light. I didn’t understand why that was happening…until now. Their other ruler is daughter to the Sun Emperor. You are a problem in my way, little Queen of Starian, Princess of the Sun.” He threatened to the Queen.

But the Queen would not back down. “What if there can be an exchange?”

This got the Sorcerer’s attention. “What kind of exchange?” he asked, his curiosity now peaked.

“In exchange for sparing my husband, my people, and my Kingdom from eternal slavery I… sacrifice myself.” said the Queen.

The Kingdom was in an uproar. They cried and protested to their Queen, to stop her from doing this to herself. They did not want to lose their beloved Queen. The Sorcerer silence them with one roar.

“Silence!” he cried out, growling at the people. He turned his attention back to the Queen. “Such a brave little Queen, that you are. Very well, the Dark creatures will not be bound to slavery…but those of Light and yourself will be!”

Suddenly, gusts of wind broke all the windows of the castle, reaching for all those who were not bounded by Darkness.  This dark magic swirled around them, howling and chanting their master’s horrible curse, as those that were bounded by Light screamed in pain, becoming small little bright spheres of glowing light. Then all the spheres headed towards the Queen, being tattooed all over her body. She screamed in agony. The King couldn’t bear to see his love in so much pain.

The King and the rest of his people could only watch in horror as the Queen became a sphere of glowing light herself. She rose into the air, when the evil one clapped his hands together, capturing the light sphere with in his hands, and the whole Kingdom especially their King wept. When the Sorcerer took his hands apart, he was holding a small pendant.

“Such a pretty little trinket.” commented the Sorcerer, as he gazed at the pendant that was now in his hands. Striding away from his musings, he turned evilly to the King. “Oh, great and powerful King, do you see what you have done? You have turned yourself and half of your Kingdom into monsters, while the other half is trapped inside this Pendant along with your Queen.” The Dark one began to chuckle as he twirled the pendant in front of the King, so he could see it.

“Release them at once!” cried out the King.

“Foolish King! There is only one way to break the curse of the Starian Kingdom and I’m the only one who knows!” laughed the Sorcerer as he flew away from the Kingdom, leaving its people and their King crying out in anguish and in anger.

Centuries have passed, the people forgetting about their history, forgetting about the monsters and creatures that had existed during those times, not believing them anymore. Not believing in magic anymore, forgetting about the ancient ways, that their ancestors had lived by. Forgetting about a Kingdom, its power hungry King, his tormented people, and the worthy Queen…lost in the sands of time. No one to know of their eternal suffering, or their pleas to Heaven, crying for freedom. Forever to be forgotten…

…until now.

Chapter Text

“Are we there yet?” Jade complained.

“For the last time, no.” Jackie stated from his seat. The young girl groaned and turned to look out the window of their plane craft. Sarah sighed, brushing the few strands of her orange hair out of her face. They had been on the plane for almost twenty hours straight, heading off to another expedition. The find of the century as the museum had said in the news.

“Patience Jade. We will get there once we do.” Uncle said, looking up from his magic books. Being a Chi Wizard, the old man needed to prepare and be on his guard so he could fight off the forces of Darkness.

“Sensei is right. We only have another hour to go.” Tohru replied with his kind face. Sarah smiled looking up at her sumo husband. The giant man could bring her comfort wherever they went, if she was scared or sad.

“OHHHHHHH!” moaned Jade.

“Don’t worry Jade, we’ll get plenty of excitement when we get to explore the Temple.” said Sarah, as she saw a bright sparkle in the brown eyes of the ten year old girl light up.

“That’s why I want to get there right now!” Jade exclaimed. Sarah laughed.

“Girls, this is not only a find of a lifetime, since no one has entered the Tomb of Emperor Shu Lo since his death close to three hundred years ago, but a mission as well.” stated Jackie, the more logical man of the group. “We have to keep our guard up at all times. So no playtime.”

“Why is it so important? It’s just another ordinary Tomb.” Jade scoffed.

“Shu Lo was no ordinary man. He was great Chi Wizard who ruled Asia peacefully during his time, obtaining many magical objects during his life, making him all powerful and knowing.” Uncle explained fixing his glasses. “Who knows what powerful items lay in those walls?”

“Or what valuable artifacts that can be stolen.” Jackie added. “The Temple has been big news since the Monks of the Ben-Shui monastery are finally allowing us to open it up after all this time. It has caught a lot of attention.”

“Including unwanted attention as well.” said Tohru getting to the point. Jackie nodded. “I’m assuming that why all of us are here.”

“Not only did the museum send me here to help with the dig, but Section 13 as well. Especially since the Dark Hand has risen again.”

Everyone gasped. The Dark Hand was a dangerous criminal organization, run by one crime lord by the name of Valmont. The organization had stolen everything known to man: ranging from valuable jewels to priceless artifacts. Valmont would do anything to get what he wanted. Sarah knew this all too well.

“What?!” Sarah exclaimed.

“I thought the Dark Hand became bankrupt, because of Shendu, talismans, and the Demon Portals.” said Jade. “I mean they are literally broke. Homeless beggars. They have zippo! Nothing! Nada!”

“That’s what we all thought.” Jackie sighed.

“What is it?”

“It seems the Dark Hand has gathered some generous amount of funds, allowing them to restart their old business before Shendu ever came along.”

“Where did they get the money?” Sarah asked.

“Probably stolen.”

“Not even by a long shot.” said Jackie. “According to Section 13 informants, the Dark Hand have been receiving this money from one Christopher DeMon.”

“Who?” questioned Jade.

“Nobody really knows a whole lot about him. All Section 13 could gather, was that DeMon is one powerful man, has many influences over high positions everywhere in society, and has more money than the eye can see.” explained Jackie.

“Sound no good if you ask me.” huffed Uncle in his seat.

“I have only met DeMon a few times in my life.” Tohru said. Everyone looked at him. “This was way before you came to join us Sarah. DeMon and Valmont met at a conference in Tokyo a few years ago. They have done a few business deals in the past, but that is far as I know. They help gather information for one another from time to time. As a matter of fact, DeMon even gave Valmont a few of his men to help with some of the operations.”

“Sounds like a generous man.” said Sarah.

“Far from it. The man was cold as ice, but his temper was that of a raging fire. He is a man you don’t want to mess with.” said Tohru.

“Sounds like you were afraid of him Big T.” Jade stated.

Tohru shook his head. “Not really, there was just something…not right about him. Something that made you feel unsafe and in grave danger.”

“You know all this from meeting him a few times?” questioned Uncle.

“He’s someone you never want to forget, though you wish you did.”

“Well we can’t afford to forget him. Since he is the one who is sponsoring for this expedition.” stated Jackie.

“What?”

“Why would he be interested?” asked Jade.

“I’m not sure, but that is why we must keep our eyes out for anything unusual. They will not open the temple till we arrive, but already DeMon is there watching over the dig, supervising what is going on.”

“We’ll do our best Jackie.” said Sarah.

“You can count on us!” exclaimed Jade.


 “Welcome! Welcome! We have been waiting for you!”

Jackie, Uncle, Jade, Tohru, and Sarah were unloading their things off from the old wagon cart that had delivered them to the camp site. They plane had landed hours ago, and to find a ride that would take them to the Temple had taken even longer. Jade was just glad that they didn’t have to walk again, which everyone was grateful, remembering that long trek to the Monastery oh so long ago.

“It is good to see you again Oh Holy men.” Uncle said bowing to the monks, as they did the same as well.

“The honor is ours! Especially since you are greatly needed here!” exclaimed the smallest of the monks. “Horrible men have been most disrespectful to our Holy Emperor Shu Lo’s tomb! They are being chaotic, stomping on sacred ground, digging and breaking stones, and not to mention Mr. DeMon.”

“What has he done?” asks Sarah. The monk looks at her.

“He has been ordering everyone around, like a slave driver! He dishonors our land and our ways. He hurts the workers, and yells at anyone who dares touches anything from the Tomb. He has to look over everything. Our head ruler is most displeased with him.”

“He’s certainly not going to be picked for most popular.” Jade said.

“Please, you must hurry and quickly! You must do something!”

“I promise you, we will do everything in our power to honor the Temple of Shu Lo, and deal with DeMon. I promise that.” Jackie stated to the monks. They smiled and bowed before them.

“Oh thank you!  Thank you!” said the monk, bowing again. “Come we will show you to your tent. A Professor Hawkins has been expecting you."

“Who?” asked Jade.

“A colleague of mine from the museum.  He’s also a good friend as well. If you want to know something about anything he is the man you go to.” explained Jackie, as they followed the monks to a very large tent. They looked around to see workers and other archeologist relaxing or going over artifacts that had been found at the Temple. Soon an old man appeared waving at them when they reached their tent.

“Jackie it is so good to see you again.” He said, shaking Jackie’s hand.

“It is good to see you as well, Professor Hawkins.”

“And tell me who are your friends that you have brought with you?”

“This is my uncle, my niece Jade, and our friends Tohru Kurosai and his wife Sarah.”

“How do you do? I hope the plane ride wasn’t that bad.”

“Oh it wasn’t that bad.” said Sarah.

“We had turbulence!” cried Uncle.

“And Uncle’s antics.” mumbled Jade.

Tohru glance over to see workers busying themselves with crates. “There seems to be a lot of people here.”

“Yes, the best archeologists in the world have come to see this dig.”

“Since the best are finally here, then why hasn’t the Temple been opened yet?”

They all jumped, turning to see the one who spoke so harshly to them. What they saw made Sarah gasp. There stood before them with a strong intimidating pose was a pale man wearing the most expensive black suit that they had ever seen. He was tall towering everyone (except for Tohru that is), and from close up, he was bulky. Blond hair was ruffled up, though it looked like someone had been trying to flatten it down. Cold silverish blue eyes stared right at them, menacing and annoyed.  He was a menacing figure to look upon.

No, what scared Sarah the most was the dreadful scar on the man’s left cheek; such awful disfigurement on a handsome face. It was curved in weird c-shaped crescent form, as though someone had used a knife to cut the man’s face up.

Professor Hawkins sighs, “Mr. DeMon I have told you many times that we have to wait until the others get here before opening up the Temple.”

“It has been three days, since I have arrived and not a single bit of progress has been done while I’ve been here.  Now if those doors aren’t pried open by today, there are going to be consequences that you’re not going to like Professor Hawkins.” hissed DeMon.

Professor Hawkins sighed once more. “We will have those doors opened in one hour. Let the last members of our party get settled and we’ll start right away.”

“You better.” DeMon glared at Professor Hawkins then moved his eyes towards Jackie. “Mr. Chan, I presume?”

“Yes, I am.” Jackie offered his hand, which DeMon took with a firm grip making Jackie flinch in pain, and ending the handshake quickly.

“Christopher DeMon, of Darken Industries.  I hear you’re one of the best.”

“Well…” said Jackie sheepishly his cheeks becoming red, “…I wouldn’t say that…”

“Never the less, I want to see mass results. I didn’t waste my money or my time on this expedition to see shabby workmanship."

“There is nothing shabby here. I know, I own Antique shop.” Uncle stated. DeMon glared at him.

“Uncle, maybe its best that you don’t say anything right now.” whispered Jade.

“I would listen to the child if I were you, old man. That wiry mouth of yours might get you into some serious trouble… one that you can’t get out of.”

“Hmmmph!” scoffed Uncle, raising one of his fists in the air, “Let old man show off his wiry fist!”

Tohru grabbed on to the Chi Wizard, before he could cause some serious harm to himself. “Sensei, please! Now is not the time for fighting.” Uncle huffed and crossed his arms in front of his chest, looking incredibly annoyed. Tohru turned back to face the glaring businessman. “Mr. DeMon”

“Tohru Kurosai. When Valmont told me you left his employment, I was quite shocked to hear, but here you are right in front of me. You seem to be changed man from the last time I saw you.”

“For the better, actually” replied Tohru. DeMon nodded his head and was about walk away, when he spotted Sarah.  He walked closely to her, with some strange countenance in his eyes that Sarah could not tell what it meant.

“And who might you be?”

“I’m Sarah Janise Kurosai, Mr. DeMon.”

The gentleman raised an eyebrow but took her hand and kissed it, such a gentle action that quite shocked Sarah and the others. “It is an honor to meet you Mrs. Kurosai. I think I’m beginning to understand what the others meant about you two.”  Tenderly letting go of her hand, his gaze went back to Tohru. “I suggest you keep your eyes on that beautiful wife of yours Tohru. I hear she is quite special.” With those words, he crossed his hands back and walked away from them, leaving startled expression on their faces.

“Was that a compliment…or a threat?” Jade questioned.

“With him you never know…"

Professor Hawkins cleared his throat trying to break away the slight tension in the air. “Well, let’s get you settled quickly before the hour is up. I will be with the workers so I shall see you soon!” And with those words, he departed to head back to the site. With vigorous amounts of energy they quickly unpacked their belongings in the tent and headed straight for the Temple doors.

Jade’s eyes widen in amazement as she looked at the Doors to the Temple of Shu Lo. The doors were carved into the mountain side, making them over twenty feet tall and thirty feet wide in diameter. Markings were etched into the doors, giving it a decorative and magnificent appearance to its smooth hard surface. Yet she knew those symbols meant more than just for show. Uncle came closer to inspect some of the designs. He tilted his glasses.

“Interesting…very interesting…”

“Out of the way old man!”

“We’re working here!”

English along with Chinese shouting and cursing intertwined as workers came to the entrance with ropes, pulleys, and machinery as they tied several lines to the old rusted rings of knockers on the stoned walls. Several men in rows of four lined up the ropes in straight lines and held on to it waiting for orders. Jackie and the others watched as a few of the archeologists came to the sides of the workers giving out the command. Soon the workers were pulling at the stone doors with all the strength they could muster. While doing so, Uncle skedaddled over to his family. They observed DeMon on the other side, with his arms crossed and a strong emotion shining in his eyes while keeping his face neutral as he looked intensely at the stoned doors of the temple. He had several bodyguards all around the area, wearing dark clothes and sunglasses while on high alert. Jade and Sarah wondered if the men and the women had guns strapped on to them as well.

“Isn’t this a little bit unnecessary to have all these bodyguards?” Sarah asked, nervously watching the stoic guards at their posts.

“Yeah, you would think that jerk was waiting for something bad to happen to him? Kind of extreme paranoia don’t you think?” Jade scoffed crossing her arms.

“Not to men like DeMon. They always have to be prepared for everything if things do not go according to plan.”

“What can go wrong?”

“Everything.”

No one said anything to that.