Chapter 1: Chapter One: The Start of Something New
- The Start of Something New
Valkyrie looked over the list for her dorm room and rechecked her bags. Clothes were packed. Hygiene products in their own bag. Her canvas backpack (decorated in pins from various functions she’d been part of) had her notebooks, pencils, and highlighters all stashed inside.
The poster from her favorite classic movie, Genie’s Wish, was in its case ready to go. A few choice photos in their frames were packed. Some of her favorite books and her laptop and chargers were packed away neatly.
Her potions set was in its box and ready to go. Cat food, the food and water bowl, litter box and litter were set up. Not to mention a few choice cat toys. She was packed… Though something still felt off.
“What do you think, Ches? Am I being paranoid like Mom or do you think I’ve got everything?” She asked. The tuxedo cat looked up from where he was curled on her bed, as if observing the stack of items.
“Mrew.” He looked to her, golden eyes flashing. Valkyrie nodded.
“Right. My bedding… Mom says they provide some, but it’s best to bring your own.” She waved her arms, another bag appearing. It had sheets, cover, pillows, and pillow cases. “Perfect. All that’s left is to survive orientation, get my class schedule, and then get the supplies I need for said classes.”
She sat down on the floor, laying down. “I’m excited, Ches… I am… But I’m a bit worried. Well… Nervous.” The cat hopped down, coming to rub against her sides and lay on her stomach. He purred, letting her pet his fur.
“No need to be nervous, you’ll be fine.” A familiar voice called. Valkyrie raised up, looking to her door. Her mother was in the doorway, peeking in, a smile on her face. “You’re a Sylvane after all.”
Valkyrie smiled. “True. But I’m a Sylvane who’s going to have to pull back on her power because her pseudo cousins are potentially evil like her pseudo grandmothers are.” She reminded. “Though I suppose I don’t have to pull back too much. Just enough to keep the Dragon from showing.”
“That’s right. Just keep the dragon from showing, and you’ll be golden.” Griffin moved to sit in the floor with her, giving a soft groan. Valkyrie smirked.
“Someone’s getting old.” She teased, fake wincing when her mother playfully bumped her shoulder.
“Let’s see how well you move around when you’re my age.” Griffin teased back. Valkyrie gave a sigh.
“Assuming I live that long, you mean.” Valkyrie stood up, stretching. Griffin frowned, standing up herself.
“Don’t talk like that, Val. You’re going to be fine.” She pulled her daughter into a hug, ruffling her short purple hair. “You’ll be fine and you’re going to grow up and become whoever you wish to be.” Griffin asserted.
Valkyrie gave a slight smile, pushing her glasses up. “Thanks, Mom… I, uh… I’ll fight for life.” She looked to the clock. “Guess I should be heading to bed. I have to be up early so I can get there in time to set up my side of the dorm.” Griffin gave a smirk.
“You? Willingly getting up early?” Griffin asked. “That’s something new.” Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“I just have to get there before Crystal does and decorates the room in all of her crystals. Like don’t get me wrong, I know they help her channel her powers, but I can’t live in a room surrounded by them. They give me the creeps… Well… Not me exactly but…” Valkyrie placed a hand to her heart. “My dragon doesn’t like being surrounded by crystals.”
Griffin sighed. “That’s because your dragon remembers… How it used to be controlled.” Griffin looked to her. “But you… You won’t be controlled. Not by Crystal.”
Valkyrie smiled. “I know. She loves me. Even if she’s dating Kota.” She winked. Griffin chuckled.
“Go. Get some sleep. And remember to try and keep the peace, especially since you and Crystal asked to be placed together.” Valkyrie gave a sheepish smile.
“I thought it’d be better to be placed with someone who actually knows me than someone who doesn’t. Especially if a certain trio of hags decide to bring me nightmares.” Griffin nodded.
“You do have a point. I conceded that. Do you remember the rules you wanted set?” Valkyrie smiled.
“Oh, I remember. No ‘my sweet child’ talk. I’d hate for the other witches to think I’m there purely because you’re my mother.” Griffin nodded.
“I understand that too.” She looked to where Cheshire was stretched out on the floor. “And you had better not cause too much trouble at my school, Cheshire, or you’ll be staying with my mother and Sasha.” She threatened. Valkyrie rolled her eyes, going to scoop up her cat.
“Don’t listen to her, Ches… She wouldn’t just abandon her first and only grandkitten.” Valkyrie pet the cat, listening to him purr. Griffin just rolled her eyes and walked out of the room.
“Busses leave at 8! Remember that!” She called to her daughter. Valkyrie smiled.
“I’ve got my alarm set!” She called down. She looked to Cheshire. “This is going to be awesome.”
Chapter 2: Chapter Two: Welcome to Cloud Tower
- Welcome to Cloud Tower
After sending her things into the pocket dimension until she made it to her dorm room, she decided she’d check herself one last time in the mirror, just to be sure she looked okay.
Her purple hair, usually left down because it came just above her shoulders was pulled into a small ponytail. Her black framed glasses still showed her cold blue eyes. No makeup, she was never much for it…
Her skin was pale, much like her mother’s. She wore a navy tank top that had the sigil of the Valkyries on it. (The only bad thing about her tank was that her scarred shoulder showed. But then again, scars were badass…)
She wore a pair of dark blue-jean shorts that came down to her knees and her black combat boots. (Yes. She was aware that shorts weren’t usual for a witch, but she burned hot due to her powers. She couldn’t help it.)
“What do you think, Ches?” She asked, looking to her cat. He raised his head and meowed. She sighed, grabbing her backpack. “Come on… We don’t want to be late. Mom would kill us.” Cheshire stretched and climbed into the backpack, satisfied enough. Valkyrie grabbed her phone, sending a quick text to her mother to let her know she’d left and that she would be in Magix soon.
Normally, they’d have went together… But faculty had to arrive earlier than the students so they could make sure everything was prepared. Which left Valkyrie and Cheshire to go to Magix on their own… Sort of…
“I am so glad we’re going to be rooming together.” Crystal grinned, taking the seat next to Valkyrie on the bus. She looked incredible. Her wavy brown hair was braided back, showing off her dazzling emerald eyes.
She had donned her favorite look for the first day, an off-the-shoulder army green sweater top and her ripped jeans. Her signature crystal necklace was around her neck, the calming power just exuding from it.
“Same… It makes me far less nervous that you’re going to be there too.” She leaned against her friend. “Did you bring Patches?” Valkyrie asked. Crystal grinned.
“Of course I did. She’s sleeping in my bag.” Valkyrie laughed.
“That’s where Cheshire is too. Well… Except in my bag.” Crystal shook her head, giving a snicker.
“Cats. What can you do?” Valkyrie gave a smile.
“So… I take it Kota already left for Red Fountain?” Crystal flushed a bit.
“Yeah. His uniform looks pretty good actually…” Crystal bit her lip. “I mean… His gem is a literal crystal.” Valkyrie laughed.
“Seems the universe is proud of the two of you being together.” Valkyrie gave her a playful shove. “I’m glad your love life is going well.” Crystal frowned.
“I’m still sorry about Anya… I can’t believe she turned out to be such a bitch.” Valkyrie sighed.
“She was fickle. But that’s fine. I’m fine.” Valkyrie gave a smile. “Hey… I wonder if Morgan’s made it to Alfea already.” She changed the subject.
Crystal hummed. “Probably. She gets up at the crack of dawn… Hell, she was probably the first one there… Aside from her pops.” Valkyrie laughed.
“I’m so glad I’m not half-elf. I couldn’t stand having the need to rise with the sun.”
Zarathustra was waiting outside the gates of Cloud Tower castle, admitting students inside. Valkyrie took a breath and stood up straight and tall (as tall as she could, being only 5’0”). Crystal patted her shoulder, trying to ease Valkyrie’s nerves. (She was 5’10’, practically an amazon… But the gentlest of witches…)
“We’ve got this.” Crystal reminded. “We’re strong and powerful witches. We just need some training.” Crystal smiled. “Remember that.”
Valkyrie let out a breath. “You’re right. I am my mother’s daughter after all… I’ve got this.” Valkyrie gave a smile, walking over to Zarathustra with Crystal.
“Name and realm?” Zarathustra asked.
“Valkyrie Sylvane. From Rancor.” As if Zarathustra didn’t know. The woman was practically an aunt.
“Crystal Lane. Also from Rancor.” Crystal said. Zarathustra hummed and looked at her list.
“Room 335. Remember you have until 3 to unpack and get settled. Then you’ll come downstairs and outside to the field where your orientation will take place. That is when you’ll get your class schedules. And then tomorrow you’ll be allowed to head off to Magix and gain any last minute supplies. School starts this Monday.” She handed the girls their room number and their keys.
“And remember, just because you can lock your door does not mean the teachers cannot get in. We have access to all rooms and if we must, we will enter your rooms. Understood?”
“Yes ma’am.” Valkyrie gave a nod.
“Yes professor.” Crystal nodded. Zarathustra smiled.
“Good. Now go get unpacked. It’s a big day.” Zarathustra shooed them off toward the castle.
The castle of Cloud Tower was wonderfully eerie and Valkyrie could feel the history and power around. “Here’s our room!” Crystal grabbed her hand, bringing her over.
The wooden door was easy enough to open, and the inside of the room was just… Homey. The room was fairly large. Two twin beds on either side of the room, two wardrobes on either side, two desks, and a door that opened up to their ensuite bathroom.
“Which side do you want?” Crystal asked. Valkyrie gestured to the right.
“It’s closer to the door… You know… Just in case.” Crystal nodded.
“Understood.” She walked over to the bed on the left, setting her bag down. A small calico cat with a bobbed tail came out of it, stretching. “Hey Patch… ready to help set up shop?” Crystal laughed, opening a small portal to her pocket dimension.
With a simple wave of her hand, Crystal’s side was set up beautifully. Her bed was made with her diamond-styled quilt patterns, her desk set up with her lamp, notebooks and laptop, her clothes neatly put away in her wardrobe. Her mirror was set up, and her crystals were set around her shelf. Pictures and posters decorating her side of the room…
Even Patches’ things were put away nice and neat. Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“Show off.” She teased, setting her bag down so Cheshire could come out. She opened up her own pocket dimension, her room setting itself up.
Her bed was made with her blue, green, and purple bed set, her desk set up with her notebooks and laptop and pencils, her photos and posters decorated around her side. Her clothes were put away into the wardrobe and Cheshire’s things were put away. “Now it’s a little roomier.” She teased. Crystal rolled her eyes.
“Your jokes are bad.” A knock came to their door, Valkyrie frowned to Crystal. The other witch shrugged, going to answer the door.
A short red-haired witch with a pumpkin t-shirt and ripped skirt and a tall green-haired witch in a white halter top and plaid skirt were at the door. “Hi… We’re your neighbors from across the hall. I’m Mirta and this is Lucy.” The red head spoke, giving a grin and a wave.
The green-haired witch, Lucy, gave a shy smile and wave. “Hi.” Crystal grinned.
“Hello. I’m Crystal. And that’s Valkyrie.” She introduced them. Valkyrie gave a smile.
“Hey. So, you guys excited about the start of the school year?” Valkyrie asked. Mirta gave a nervous laugh.
“I’m just hoping to get passed orientation… I heard the older witches get to watch and that’s sort of…. Nerve-wrecking.” Mirta rubbed the back of her neck. “I… I heard there’s three in particular who aren’t… Good…”
Lucy sighed. “Yeah… They call themselves the Trix or something.” Valkyrie froze a bit at the name, a flash of a memory not her own came through. Three witches, yellow eyed and evil.
“Well… The way of dealing with witches like that… Is to not care. I mean… I learned a long time ago that other people’s perceptions don’t matter, it’s what you think of yourself that counts.” Valkyrie managed to say.
Mirta toyed with a strand of hair. “That’s easy for you to say… I mean… I heard those three are… Terrifying.”
Crystal snickered. “Yeah? Well just remember Mirta… They’re just witches like the rest of us. Right Val?” Valkyrie nodded.
“Right.” She looked to the time. “But we should start heading downstairs… It’s about orientation time.” Mirta swallowed.
“Great… Just great....”
Freshmen witches sat on the bottom bleachers while the rest of the students piled around the top. The faculty were on the bottom, near the main part of the field.
Griffin was wrapping up her beginning of the year speech and moving into the tradition of freshmen orientation. “As many of you may be aware, the way Cloud Tower evaluates students at the beginning of the year is to have them battle a shapeshifter. The creature will become what it think you should be able to handle based on your powers.”
“Depending on how well you do with the creature, you will be placed in remedial classes, standard classes, advanced classes, or honors classes. This is just your first evaluation, however, and depending on how midterms and finals go, you may find yourself up a class level or down a class level.” Griffin reminded them.
“Now… To protect the rest of the students, a shield will go up before each battle… It will not go down until you have either defeated the creature or been defeated by the creature.” She gave a smile. “Now ladies, are you going to volunteer or will we have to do this alphabetically?” No one moved.
She sighed. “Alphabetically it is then. First up,” she looked at her class list, “is Rubis Allan.” A witch with shoulder length dark pink hair made her way down to the field.
Rubis touched the creature, letting it sense out her powers before shifting into an ogre with wired club. It lunged at the girl, shrieking at her.
She dodged, pulling together her power. “Digital Blast!” She called, watching as blue numbers attacked the beast.
It shook them off, charging angrily at the witch. Rubis glowered, standing her ground. “Web blast!” She called, blue numbers forming a webbed sphere around the creature, trapping it. The sphere shrunk, finally popping the creature and the illusion it had.
She grinned, taking a bow. The teachers clapped while Griffin stood. “While we believe you did well, it was done by minimum standards. You’ll be in the standard classes.” She looked around. “Next!”
Lucy was doing better than she’d fretted she’d do. Her insect swarms were keeping the creature, this time a rock golem, from attacking her. Valkyrie couldn’t help but smile since the girl had been so nervous.
After Lucy was finished, Mirta was up. She wasn’t the most powerful witch, that became obvious fairly quickly, but she was incredible at her illusions and was able to make it. To the standard classes anyway…
Crystal was up. The creature quickly became a discordian beast. It lunged in attack at the brunette. She glowered, creating a shield out crystals.
The creature tried to break through, but there was light reflecting, nearly blinding it. Crystal gave a grin, creating more crystals and using them to send blasts of reflected lights at the creature.
With a shriek, the discordian beast fell back, the light burning it. Crystal kept up her attack, her crystals becoming more and more aggressive until the beast burst into light. She cheered, feeling so giddy.
The other students and the teachers clapped. Griffin gave a smile. “Welcome to honors, Ms. Lane.” Crystal grinned.
“Thank you, Headmistress.” She gave a bow, heading back to her seat. “Good luck.” She whispered to Valkyrie. “It’s tougher than it looks.” Valkyrie gave a nod, mentally trying to prepare herself.
Valkyrie took her place, touching the creature. It seemed to take a moment to pick a form, but when it did…
There were audible gasps when the creature became an ice snake from Omega, coiled and ready to strike.
Valkyrie managed to dodge its ice blasts, but the attacks kept coming. The ice snake was aggressive and determined. The witch paused, turning to fully face the creature feeling her power swirl inside her.
‘Go for the stomach.’ A voice told her, one she’d heard many times. Her dragon. She gave a smirk, summoning her dark fire and blasting the ice snake full on in the stomach.
It partially melted away, but lunged for her again. Angry. She barely dodged the icy blast, her legs feeling the chill.
“Okay… You asked for it.” She muttered, summoning up her power. Dark flames appeared around her and she threw her hands up. The flames became one and attacked the ice snake, forcing it to melt completely.
There were cheers and claps, and Valkyrie couldn’t help but take a bow. “I suppose it shouldn’t come as a surprise, but you’ve made it to honors.” Her mother’s voice called, giving a smile.
Valkyrie grinned. “Thank you, Headmistress.”
She and Crystal were hanging out in Cloud Tower’s courtyard after the other freshmen had had their orientation, passing the time before dinner when she’ d go and meet up with her cousin, Morgan.
Footsteps approached and Valkyrie felt the hairs on the back of her neck stand up. ‘Be wary.’ Her dragon spoke.
“Hey Valkyrie, that was some impressive witchcraft.” A haughty voice spoke. She and Crystal looked to the other witches who had approached.
One had long white hair in a pony-tail, her clothes lightly colored for a witch. The girl on the left had long brown hair and wore tinted glasses, and the one on the right was in maroon clothes, her hair frizzy and puffed. “Thanks.” Valkyrie spoke. Kept it simple.
“So… We’re sure you know about us, the most popular girls at Cloud Tower. I’m Darcy, that’s Stormy, and that’s Icy.” The brunette spoke, gesturing to each sister.
“And we have a proposition for you…” Stormy chuckled. “If you’re not scared.” Valkyrie looked to Crystal, checking to see if she was hearing it too. Her friend shrugged.
“What sort of proposition? Because I’m not really looking for a girlfriend right now, I’d like to focus on myself.” Valkyrie half-joked. Best to keep it light.
The white-haired witch, Icy, gave a smirk. “Oh no… Nothing like that. You see… We’d like you, as a truly powerful witch, to join our Coven. What do you say?” She asked.
‘Hell no. I’ll never be a slave again.’ Valkyrie’s dragon growled in her ear. Valkyrie gave a slight smile. “That’s a nice offer, but I’m going to have to decline. I mean, you three are seniors and know each other so well… I’d rather not interfere in that. Besides, I’d like to make a Coven with witches closer in age to me. So we can grow together.”
Stormy glowered. “Fine. If that’s what you want.”
“But if you’re not with us, just stay out of our way.” Darcy warned. The three began to walk off.
Once they were out of earshot, Crystal laughed. “I can’t believe they actually thought you’d join with them.”
“I know right?” Valkyrie chuckled. Her phone went off and she swore, looking at the time. “I’m heading off to that café in Magix… White Horse? Morgan wants to do some catching up before we get swamped with classes.” She stood, dusting herself off.
“Want me to bring you back anything?” Valkyrie asked. Crystal shook her head.
“No. I’m going to be meeting with Kota later so…” She gave a wink. “I’ll be fine.” Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“Suit yourself.” She grabbed her bag, walking out of the courtyard…
Chapter 3: Chapter Three: Again with You Three?
- Again With You Three
Valkyrie closed her eyes, relishing her chocolate milkshake. “I think you’ve found a wonderful place here, Morgan.” She cheered to her cousin.
Morgan Sylvane had her blonde-brown hair pulled up in a bun, her pointed ears showing. Her amber eyes seemed to sparkle as she laughed with her cousin. “I’m so glad you think so. Papa found it last year and he swears by it… Of course Dad always teases him about his sweet tooth…”
Valkyrie snorted. “As if he has room to talk.” She paused. There was familiar feeling welling around her, a being close to her. ‘She lives.’ Her dragon spoke. Morgan frowned.
“Val… you okay?” She waved her hand in front of the witch’s face. “You’re starting to space out on me.” Valkyrie stood.
“Yeah. I’m fine… I just… I may be more worn out than I thought.” She gave her cousin a half-hug. “I’ll talk to you later?” Morgan frowned.
“Fine… But you better let me know when you’ve made it back to Cloud Tower in one piece.” She pointed at her cousin. “And no side-tracking.” Valkyrie gave a smile.
“Have I ev-”
“Yes. You have. And you have the scar to prove it.” Morgan challenged. Valkyrie sighed.
“Fine. We’ll chat later.” She gave a wink and started on her way back to Cloud Tower…
That feeling got stronger and stronger and Valkyrie couldn’t fight it anymore. She made her way down an alleyway, stopping when she saw four fairies get forced back by an icy blast.
She glowered and rushed into the fray, getting between the fairies and the… Senior witches. Damn.
“Get out of the way, Freshie, this isn’t your fight.” Icy commanded. Valkyrie frowned, standing her ground. She noticed the fairy on ice, the only one unchanged. ‘She lives.’ Her dragon repeated.
Valkyrie let her flame go and defrost the red head, watching as she fell to her knees. “Bloom!” The blonde fairy in the orange rushed over, helping the red head up.
“What. The. Hell?” Darcy growled. “Who do you think you are Freshman?!” Valkyrie smirked.
“Funny, you seemed to know my name just fine when you tried to recruit me.” Valkyrie retorted, crossing her arms. “Now… How is this going to look on Cloud Tower? Senior witches fighting against freshman fairies? Do you know how pathetic that is? I mean, if you wanna fight, at least fight someone who’s in your own power structure.” She taunted.
Stormy fumed, raising her arms. “You really want to end up like that ice snake I fought earlier?” Valkyrie knew she was pushing her luck, but she needed them to leave.
Icy glowered. “Fine. But this isn’t over.” She teleported herself and her sisters away. Valkyrie sighed, turning to face the fairies.
The red head was better, more conscious, and the other four had powered down. One had dark blue/black hair in short pigtails and wore a red one-shoulder top and jeans. One had short violet hair and was wearing some sort of purple and green suit. The blonde warming the redhead up wore a green halter top and orange skirt.
And the last one… Valkyrie mentally swore. She was beautiful. Tanned skin, long brown hair with blonde bangs. A green off the shoulder top and a pink skirt… And… Valkyrie thought she was beautiful. (Not that the others weren’t pretty… But this one… She hit all of Valkyrie’s buttons.)
“Are… You guys okay?” Valkyrie asked, deciding not to gawk. The brunette gave a smile, an enchanting image.
“We’re fine. Thank you for stepping in…” She extended her hand. “I’m Flora…” Valkyrie smiled, taking her hand and shaking it.
“I’m Valkyrie.” The others gave a wave.
“I’m Princess Stella of Solaria. And this is Bloom.” The blonde froze, noticing how the other three glared at her. “We can talk about that later, girls.” She gave a sheepish smile before turning to Valkyrie. “Hey… You mentioned their Coven… Are you a Cloud Tower witch?” The fairy almost snarled.
Valkyrie gave a forced smile, one she was used to giving. “I am. And for the record, not every witch wants to beat up fairies. Most of us actually understand the concept of balance. I mean, witches and fairies are just two sides of the same magic coin. Whether you want to admit it or not.”
“Oh I believe it. There are many fantastic healers and potion masters from Linphea who are witches.” That sweet voice, Flora, spoke. Valkyrie gave a real smile.
“True…. Witches are key to keeping balance. We can’t have all dark magic or all light magic.” The one named Tecna spoke. The one named Musa shrugged.
“You don’t fight with me, I won’t fight with you. That’s my philosophy.” Valkyrie chuckled.
“That’s a good one to have.” She turned to the redhead. “You sure you’re gonna be fine?” She asked. The redhead, Bloom, gave a shaky thumbs up.
“Yeah… I’m fine… Just chilled.” She stood, extending a hand to Valkyrie. “Thank you for helping out, Valkyrie.” They shook hands and it was like a spark. A familiar feeling. ‘She lives.’ Her dragon spoke again.
They pulled away, glancing at each other’s hands. “That was…”
“Yeah.” Valkyrie gave a weak smile. “Means we may be counterparts.” Bloom frowned.
“Counterparts are people who share a power from a shared source, but like… It’s split into two halves.” Stella explained. Bloom grinned.
“Cool. What’s your power?” She asked Valkyrie. The purple haired witch gave a shrug.
“Nothing special. I’m a witch of dark fire.” Dark Dragon Fire… But Dark Fire all the same. Bloom thought for a moment.
“So I should be a fire fairy?” Valkyrie frowned.
“Don’t you know your powers?” The redhead gave a sheepish smile.
“Up until yesterday I didn’t even know I had magic… I’m… From earth.” Valkyrie paused and looked at the reactions from the fairy’s friends.
“That sounds like a lot to unpack.” She gave a wave. “I wish you all luck.” She looked to Flora and gave a bit of a wink. “Get to Alfea safely… I mean… I’d offer to walk you guys… But it’s getting late and Cloud Tower’s headmistress is strict.” She started off.
“Maybe we’ll see each other again sometime.” Flora’s voice called. Valkyrie grinned, turning back to the fairies.
“If the fates allow it.”
“Mother, we may have a problem.” Valkyrie sat down at the chair opposite her mother’s. She had marched herself to the headmistress’ office, needing to explain what she’d witnessed.
“Is it about your pseudo cousins? Because Crystal already told me they’d made an offer toward you.” Griffin explained. Valkyrie shook her head.
“It’s not that. I mean… Sort of it is…” She sighed. “Look, I stopped them from hurting some freshmen fairies and got them to leave… Well… One of the fairies felt familiar to me… I mean… Familiar to me.” She stressed. Griffin frowned.
“When was the last time there was magic on Earth? Because she claims to be from Earth.” Valkyrie shook her head. “And… She doesn’t know about her magic to its extent… But Mom…. My dragon kept talking… It…. It was just one phrase but it was so clear to me.”
Griffin swallowed. “What. Phrase?”
“She lives.” Valkyrie said. “And when we shook hands, I got this feeling that I know her. That… What if she’s… My counterpart?” Griffin shook her head.
“That’s impossible. The heir to Domino died. Years ago.”
“What if she didn’t? What did you say her name was?”
“Then it could be the same one, Mom.” Valkyrie felt panic rise. “And if she is the heir to Domino… If she is who I feel like she is… What should I do?” Griffin shook her head.
“Don’t worry about it right now, Valkyrie. Go. Get some sleep. You have a busy day tomorrow.” Griffin changed the subject.
Valkyrie sighed. “Fine. But we’re not done talking about this. She deserves to know.” She stood and made her way to the door. “Goodnight, Mother.”
Chapter 4: Chapter Four: Hello Again
- Hello Again
She looked over the shelves of herbs, referring back to her checklist each time. Zarathustra’s potionology class was one of the more difficult classes, and it required as many batches of ingredients as one could afford.
A little bit of lotus blossoms, a few ragwort roots, shrimp eyes, and a few feathers from a hippogriff. (Just a few from the list.) Valkyrie paid out, glad to finally be done with that part of the day.
Now she was free to- “Hey! You’re Valkyrie right…? It’s me, Flora? From yesterday?” A soft voice called. Valkyrie turned, unable to hide her grin as the taller girl came over.
“Hey. Did you ladies make it back to Alfea okay?” Valkyrie asked. The brunette nodded.
“We made it back… though Ms. Faragonda wasn’t thrilled with Bloom and Stella… but it all got sorted out.” They walked out of the herb and witchcraft store and into the main portion of the mall. “Preparing for potionology classes? I could give you some organic herbs if you ever needed…”
Valkyrie smiled. “I might take you up on that later. Let’s see how long this stash lasts.” She gestured to her bag before she teleported it back to her dorm room. “What brings you to the mall? Shouldn’t you have classes today?” Valkyrie asked. “My cousin, she’s a fairy, was telling me about having her transfiguration class today.”
Flora chuckled. “My classes finished early, but the others are still in theirs… And with the beginning of the year dance coming up…”
“You wanted to come dress shopping?” Valkyrie finished. “I can understand that… Morgan gets a kick out of shopping.” Flora flushed.
“Stella does too… Which is why I wished she was able to come here with me…” The fairy brightened up. “Hey… Are you busy today? Besides herb shopping…?” Valkyrie thought for a moment.
Really all she had planned was hanging out with Crystal and maybe getting to know some of the other witches… But this was an opportunity she couldn’t turn down.
“I’m free. Do you want me to come with you?” Valkyrie asked.
“Please. I’d be in your debt.” Flora said. Valkyrie gave a slight laugh, placing a hand on Flora’s shoulder (which wasn’t necessarily easy given the height difference).
“Be careful with that phrase, there are some witches who’d take you up on it.” She teased/warned. “But sure, I’d love to help out. Just be warned… I’m not good at the whole shopping thing…”
Flora smiled. “I have a feeling we’ll do just fine, Valkyrie.” Oh she was so screwed… Hearing that sweet voice practically purr-out her name…
“I’m sure we will too.” She gestured to the rest of the mall. “Lead me on, dear Flora.” The fairy laughed, taking her hand and heading for the nearest dress shop.
Flora had tried on a few different dresses, each one more stunning than the last… Until she found the dress.
It had a dark pink top, a light pink skirt, and vines were used as accent pieces and sleeves. Valkyrie couldn’t stop herself. “Damn… You’re beautiful.” She flushed a bit, covering her mouth. “I mean… I think this is the dress.” Flora grinned.
“I think so too… And it’s by a Linphean designer. Which just… It makes this perfect.” She looked to Valkyrie. “Why don’t we shop for you a dress next?” Valkyrie gave a laugh, pushing back a loose strand of her purple locks.
“No thank you. I mean… Witches aren’t exactly going to the dance between Red Fountain and Alfea. I mean… Not officially. Though there is typically a prank done by a group of senior witches… Don’t get me wrong, all the witches help conspire and the seniors get to pick what they do… But it’s never too gruesome.”
“Usually it’s something like… Hair getting medusa-ed. Maybe some food poisoning. Make-up that turns you into a crone for a few hours.” Valkyrie shrugged. Flora gave a chuckle.
“Sounds like the start to a prank war.” Valkyrie laughed.
“Something like that.” She sighed. Flora placed a hand on her shoulder, and damn did she feel butterflies.
“Well, just because you won’t be at the first dance doesn’t mean you won’t go to any others. I know about the Witches’ Ball, the Solstice Celebrations, and Samhain. Come on, I can help.” Valkyrie mentally swore.
“I don’t pull off dresses well…” Flora gave a look.
“Let me guess, dresses aren’t your thing? That’s perfectly okay… You could wear shorts underneath.” Valkyrie sighed. No way out.
“Okay… I’ll check out a few dresses… But don’t get your hopes up.” Valkyrie pointed a finger. “And remember, you asked for it.” Flora chuckled, leading her off and grabbing a few dresses off the shelf before pushing Valkyrie to one of the changers.
She took a breath and stepped inside, letting the magic change her. The first dress was a simple dress, black except for the dark blue top. Lace around the sides and simple black heels. “I don’t know… I’m short and this feels… Over the top.”
Flora gave a chuckle. “If you say so… But I think the blue really brings out the color of your eyes.” Valkyrie flushed.
“How about it being a maybe…” She stepped back, letting the magic change her again. This time it was a scarlet dress, a slight ruffled top and long flowy skirt. Heels. Again. “Okay… This one reminds me too much of something my mother would wear.”
Flora couldn’t help but laugh at that. “Is that so bad?”
“No… But I get enough people telling me I look just like her when she was my age.” Valkyrie went to try another dress.
It was a dark purple dress that just seemed to flow with mix-matched short sleeves. And flats. She could stand flats. “Okay… I could live with this.” Valkyrie smiled. Flora grinned.
“You look stunning.” Valkyrie grinned, going to change back.
When she came back in her normal clothes, she grabbed the dress. “I suppose one dress on hand wouldn’t hurt.”
Flora grinned. “That’s the spirit.” She led her to the cash register, checking out.
“So after this… Would you want to grab a bite to eat?” Valkyrie asked. She was pressing her luck, but she had to know.
Flora smiled. “I’d love to. How does pizza sound?”
“Like you read my mind.” Valkyrie smiled.
“Here’s an empty booth.” Valkyrie directed them. Flora set her plate and drink down.
“Wonderful. And we’re by the window near the fountain… I love people watching. People are fascinating.” Flora took a sip of her tea.
Valkyrie gave a shrug, taking a bite from her cheese pizza. “They can be. But I’ve known a few who could be tossed.”
Flora chuckled. “I think there are people like that everywhere.” She paused, noticing Valkyrie’s shoulder. “What happened there?” The witch paused, trying to find the words.
“I… My best friend’s boyfriend and I were sparring… He’s my best guy friend and he’s a strong wizard and we were supervised by our parents.” Valkyrie started.
“But we sort of lost ourselves in the fight and he… Made an illusion that really unsettled me… So when I fought back, we both got hurt. Badly. He has a matching scar on his shoulder too…” She gave a sheepish smile.
“It’s just… One of those things.” Flora whistled.
“That’s tough… I mean, my little sister and I fight but…” Valkyrie gave a shrug.
“It’s one of those things that happens.” She relaxed a bit. “Are you excited for your first year at Alfea?”
“I am. I’m hoping I have as great a time as my mother did when she was a student.” Flora took a bite of her veggie pizza. “I mean… She talks about how incredible her time was here.”
“I know what you mean. My mom’s an alumna of Cloud Tower and… She was a top witch. I’ve got so much to live up to.” Valkyrie gave a slight chuckle. “Parents and pressure.”
“That’s the truth.” Flora paused. “Do you know her?” Valkyrie frowned and moved to look. Sure enough, there was Morgan, giving a teasing wave.
“That is my cousin, Morgan. The one I said goes to Alfea…” Valkyrie explained. Flora grinned.
“Right. I think she’s in my class with Professor Palladium.” She waved the blonde-brown haired fairy over.
Morgan waltzed over, scooting in beside her cousin, a certain sort of smile on her face. “Valkyrie, so glad to see you here.” She looked over to Flora. “And… It’s Flora, right? La Rosa? From Linphea?”
Flora nodded. “That’s right. And you’re Morgan Sylvane from Rancor.” The other fairy grinned.
“Guilty. So are you two having a fun time?” Morgan half-teased. Valkyrie fought a flush.
“We’re having a pretty good time. Your cousin was helping me find a dress for the school dance.” Flora said. Morgan leaned against her cousin.
“She’s decent for a witch.” Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“And you’re okay for a fairy.” She teased back. Morgan reached for Valkyrie’s plate and Valkyrie smacked her hand. “Don’t even think about it, Cousin.” Morgan pouted.
“Hey… I was just going to get a bite.” Flora chuckled.
“Here… Have a slice of mine. Or do you like veggie pizza?” Morgan grinned, accepting the slice.
“I like her, Valkyrie… She’s nice.” Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“Of course Flora’s nice. You, on the other hand, are free-loader.” Valkyrie taunted. Morgan snorted.
“Says you.” Flora laughed.
“Are you two always like this?”
“It’s a family thing. We all tease and taunt.” Valkyrie shrugged. “It’s like a tradition at this point. If we didn’t tease each other all the time, we’d swear someone was dying.” Her phone vibrated. A text from Crystal.
“And that’s my cue… Apparently our headmistress is giving an announcement soon and we all have to be there.” She turned to Morgan, who slipped out of the booth so Valkyrie could get out. The witch turned to Flora, handing her a napkin with her name and number. “In case you want someone to talk to… Or just want to talk to me.”
Flora gave a laugh, slipping the napkin into her bag. “I’ll be sure to text you first so you know who it is. Be careful on your way back to Cloud Tower.”
“And you on your way back to Alfea.” She looked to Morgan, giving her cousin a hug. “Later, Pixie.”
“Bye, Wiatch.” Valkyrie smiled, heading out of the food court and out of the mall. Time to see what the announcement was about…
Chapter 5: Chapter Five: Magic in the Air
- Magic in the Air
Valkyrie grabbed a seat between Crystal and Mirta. “Did I miss anything?” She asked, taking a breath. She’d ran half-way through Gloomy Wood Forest just so she’d be on time.
“Nothing yet. Ms. Griffin hasn’t even started yet.” Mirta whispered.
“Yeah. You made it with time to spare.” Crystal smirked. “Though I do wonder where you were.” Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“I was at the mall grabbing things for our potionology class. I know Zarathustra isn’t keen on witches who aren’t prepared.”
“True. I heard the last witch who didn’t have her ingredients was turned into a snake.” Lucy muttered. Valkyrie shook her head.
“The one thing I can’t stand. A snake.” She heard the familiar clacking of heels. “Show time.”
Ms. Griffin was front and center at the auditorium, looking over her students. “Witches, the time has come to start messing with the fairies. Tomorrow night they’ll be having their dance with the Red Fountain students.” She smirked. “It’ll be oh so romantic for them.” She snarked.
“At least, it will be until one of you brilliant witches come up with a plan to ruin it. Now, it can’t be anything lethal or long term or we’ll have to answer to the Grand Council… With those being the only limitations, be as creative as you can be. Be nasty, be cruel, and be wicked. After all, everyone needs a little mayhem and chaos in their lives.” Griffin gave a smile.
“The witch or coven who can create the most devious plan will be allowed to enact it.” She paused. “And there is a gift card to Aberzombie and Witch on the line.” She stood. “Now girls… Don’t disappoint me.” With that, she disappeared, leaving the girls to talk amongst themselves about ideas.
Valkyrie frowned. “I don’t know… While this could be fun… I have a bad feeling about it.” Crystal raised an eyebrow at her.
“Wanna explain?” Valkyrie gestured to the senior seats.
“Those three, the Trix coven. A competition like this could give them an edge to get whatever it is they want.” Valkyrie explained. Mirta frowned.
“Wait a minute… What makes you say that?” Lucy walked over to be more involved in the circle.
“Yeah… I mean, Icy and her sisters are way too cool to be bothered with being sneaky about wanting things.”
Valkyrie glared. “They picked a fight with that princess from Solaria. And while that’s all well and good, they’ve been targeting her to steal her ring. Which isn’t. I mean, we’ve heard it all before. After the Great Magic War, it was brought to everyone’s attention that witches weren’t all inherently evil. They bring chaos and mayhem to keep balance in the magical world. But thievery? That’s a major step backward.”
Lucy and Mirta swore. “That is heavy…” Lucy admitted. “But what proof do you have?”
“I was there for the fight and I made them leave.” Valkyrie admitted. “I told them to get lost.”
Lucy’s eyes widened. “And that worked? They listened to you? I mean, don’t get me wrong, you were hella scary at orientation, but to get senior witches to bow out of a fight with you?”
Crystal stepped in to that. “Valkyrie is a lot tougher than she looks… Her mom was part of the Great War and sort of trained her since her magic came in to be on guard… Which is sort of great in these situations.”
“Especially since those three only seem to listen to power moves.” Mirta nodded. Lucy whistled.
“Must have been a rough childhood then. Is that how you got the scar?” The green haired witch asked, gesturing to Valkyrie’s exposed shoulder.
“Something like that.” Valkyrie stood. “I’ll talk with you girls later… I’m going to see if I can get a conference with the Headmistress.”
Mirta swallowed. “Are you sure that’s a good idea?” Valkyrie gave a smile.
“I’m not scared of her. And none of you should be either. I mean… She’s a scary witch, but we’re her students and she cares for our well-being…” Lucy snorted.
“Yeah… I’m sure she does.”
Valkyrie knocked on the large wooden doors, stepping back as they opened up to the office. There was a single chair in front of the desk, a crystal ball and several papers were scattered about. Griffin looked up, setting her glasses away. “Can I help you?” She asked.
Valkyrie walked in, making sure the door was shut and the room soundproofed. “You need to keep an eye on Icy, Darcy, and Stormy, Mother. They’re targeting the princess of Solaria and her ring and we can’t let that slide.”
Griffin hummed. “Valkyrie, I’ve been keeping my eyes on them for years now. They’ve never stepped out of line. Why would they risk it now?”
“I don’t know. But I’m telling you, if they win this competition, it could be bad for us if Stella’s ring goes missing.” Griffin tilted her head.
“Stella is it? You’ve become friends with the princess of Solaria?” Valkyrie felt herself flush.
“Not… Exactly. She was there when the senior witches jumped that Earth fairy. And… The point is… Her ring is being targeted. She’s being targeted. And that could be bad for Cloud Tower.” Valkyrie reminded her mother.
“Fine… If you’re going to be so insistent on this… I’m going to give you permission to sneak over to the gala and check on them. You’re not to interfere in the prank, but if they do go after the ring… You have my blessing to out them to Faragonda.” Valkyrie took a breath.
“And Valkyrie… Don’t get caught up with any of the fairies while you’re there… You need to stay clear headed.” Her mother half-teased. Valkyrie flushed again before leaving the room, heading to her dorm.
“How does this sound for the dance: summoning sludge creatures to completely overtake the food and drinks. They’ll be so sickened, it’ll be great.” Crystal handed her paper over to Valkyrie.
The purple-haired witch looked it over before setting it back down. “It sounds fine… But I have a feeling I already know who’ll win.” She laid back on her bed, Cheshire purring beside her.
“Are you still on that?” Crystal asked, crossing her arms. “Look… So what if they win? It’s their right to prank the fairies. Besides, they’re not truly evil. Your dragon is just biased. And you know he’s biased.” Valkyrie groaned.
“Maybe… But can you blame him? The Ancestral Witches murdered his true form and then stole the person his soul was residing in and brainwashed them into being pure evil.”
“And now here you are, sane and non-evil. Morally gray, sure, but not evil.” Crystal sighed, sitting in her chair. Patches climbed into her lap, demanding attention.
“I just can’t shake the feeling they’re up to something though…” She sat up. “Maybe I could do a truth spell on them and have my mom ask them directly what their plans are…?” Crystal snorted.
“After you turned them down, do you really expect them to accept any sort of drink you’d make them?” Crystal shook her head. “Look… if they will, you’ll be there to spy on them. If they do make a play for the ring… You can stop them.”
“I hope you’re right…” She sighed, laying back down. “I just… I hate this feeling… Like I know something bad is going to happen.”
Valkyrie looked herself over in the mirror. She had her short hair down with two strands braided on the sides. She wore the dress she and Flora had picked out, making sure she looked presentable. Crystal shook her head.
“If I didn’t know you, I could swear you looked like a fairy.” She placed a hand on Valkyrie’s shoulder. “You sure about this? Because if you get caught…”
“I know.” She took a breath. “Remember to cover for me when curfew check happens.” Crystal laughed.
“I’ve been covering for you since we were five. I’ve got this.” She gave a wink. “And share a dance with that cute nature fairy for me.” Valkyrie flushed.
“Go to hell.”
Alfea had a beautiful campus… But it wasn’t the most secure one… She was able to slip into the fray with the other fairies, blending in to the crowd and staying near the wall.
“I take it your crashing the party?” A familiar sweet voice asked. Valkyrie turned to face Flora, giving a slight smile.
“Something like that.” She looked around, noticing three familiar figures. “Flora… Want to help bust some Cloud Tower witches?” She asked.
Flora tilted her head. “What do you mean? I thought you were the one…”
“No. I’m just here to make sure that pranking is all that’s being done. But its Icy, Darcy, and Stormy who won the competition… and I suspect that’s not the only reason they’re here.” Flora gave a knowing nod.
“Come on… We need to follow them, then.” She let Valkyrie lead her away from the party. They kept quiet, hiding behind one of the pillars. Close together. ‘She smells like lilies…’ Valkyrie couldn’t help but think.
‘Focus.’ Her dragon all but growled.
Footsteps… “Okay sisters, now that the party favors are fixed… It’s time we start looking for the Solarian ring.” Icy’s voice spoke.
“And then we’ll have all we need.” Darcy cackled.
“I love when a plan comes together.” Stormy laughed. Valkyrie frowned, watching as they left through a portal to the outside.
Flora looked to Valkyrie. “We have to stop them.”
“I know…” Valkyrie gave a smile to Flora. “Tell your friends… Between the five of you, you can stop whatever it is they have planned.” The soft spoken fairy thought it over.
“Okay…” She gave a sheepish smile. “Valkyrie, after we stop the seniors… Do you have to head back immediately?” Valkyrie bit her lip. She should leave after Flora gives the all-clear… But…
“No… Why?” Flora gave a smile.
“I have my reasons.” She gave a wink. “See you later.” She flounced off, calling for her friends.
Valkyrie sighed but stayed put. If Flora wanted to see her after for whatever reason… Who was she to deny a pretty fairy?
“You don’t stick out at all.” A familiar voice teased. Morgan. Valkyrie chuckled, facing her cousin.
“You look interesting.” Valkyrie teased. Her cousin had her long locks in a braided updo, a short white dress with a brown belt tied around.
“And so do you. I thought you hated dresses.” Morgan smirked. “Let me guess… Sweet little Flora?” Valkyrie snorted.
“None of your business.” Morgan chuckled.
“If you say so.” She looked around. “Now, I don’t know what you’re doing here and I don’t necessarily care… But try not to cause a scene.” Valkyrie frowned.
“What? Not going to stay and hang out with me?” Morgan snickered.
“Oh no. I’ve got a few guys I promised a dance to. And it’d be rude of me not to fulfill a promise.” She gave a wink. “Later, Cousin.”
“I’m so glad you haven’t left yet.” Flora came over to her, taking her hand. “We did a counterspell on the eggs and I did a little swapping spell so they couldn’t get Stella’s ring.” Valkyrie gave a sigh of relief.
“Good. I’d hate for something to happen to-” She could sense the power surge, an awakening. ‘She has connected.’ Her dragon purred. “To Stella’s ring…” She looked around. “Did… You feel that?”
“Feel what?” Flora asked. “Are you okay? You look pale… er…” Valkyrie sighed, shaking her head.
“It’s probably nothing.” She looked to Flora. “So… What was it you wanted me to stay for?” Flora grinned.
“I was hoping we could have a dance?” Valkyrie flushed a bit.
“I… Don’t dance.” Flora chuckled.
“I’ll teach you. Come on.” She led Flora to the room near the ballroom. They could still hear the music, but it was less likely Valkyrie would be caught by the Alfea faculty.
She could make out a familiar voice singing the song, but all she was really focused on was Flora. Flora placing a hand on her shoulder and having one in her hand while guiding Valkyrie’s to her waist.
They swayed in time with the music, occasionally twirling one another. Valkyrie couldn’t help but grin, until she noticed the time. “I hate to say it, but I’ve got to get going.” She gave a bow to Flora. “Thank you, for the dance.”
Flora giggled. “You’re welcome.” She took Valkyrie’s hand. “Please… Let me know when you’ve made it back safely.” Valkyrie gave a nod.
“Will do. And watch out for Morgan for me.” She gave a wink before teleporting out. Now all she had to do was get back to Cloud Tower…
“Was your suspicion correct?” Griffin asked, looking Valkyrie over. The younger witch gave a nod.
“It was. But I alerted Princess Stella to the issue and she resolved it. Her ring is safely with her. All the Trix made off with was one of their own party favors.” Valkyrie couldn’t help but smirk at the thought.
Griffin shook her head. “Guess I’ll need to keep a closer eye on them than I thought.” She looked to her daughter, studying her. “And you need to try and keep your distance.”
Valkyrie sighed. “Yes, Mother.”
Chapter 6: Chapter Six: Black Mud Swamp
- Black Mud Swamp
“Why are we here again?” Crystal asked, scrunching her face. The freshman class was in Black Mud Swamp, the grimiest, ickiest place in Magix for some sort of field trip. Professor Ediltrude stepped forward.
“Simple, Ms. Lane. We are here so you can learn to navigate the harshest environment of Magix.” She gave a smirk, looking out among the witches. All were wearing safari based clothing, khakis and thick boots.
“I’m from Inseca… It’s already a harsh environment.” Lucy said, attempting to get out of the assignment. The Linphean triplets sighed.
“Oh don’t worry, Lucy… This shouldn’t be too hard.” Gerbera said, running a hand through her blonde hair.
“Yeah, just stick with us.” Euphorbia grinned. Ediltrude cleared her throat.
“As much as it warms my ice cold heart to see young witches willing to assist one another, that’s not part of the assignment.” The black-haired witch started.
“Then what exactly is the assignment?” Valkyrie asked. The older witch gave a smirk.
“To obtain a Quietus Carnivorous plant. Without the use of your magic and without being digested.” Ediltrude clapped her hands. “You have until 6 to get the plants. Otherwise you’ll not only receive a tardy on your work, but you will be late to dinner. And we all know how Ms. Griffin is about punctuality.”
Valkyrie muttered, “no kidding,” under her breath. Her mother had always been a stickler for time. Always.
“Now ladies… If any of you have a legitimate reason why you cannot participate in this exercise, give it now. And by that, I mean proof of an extreme allergy or broken bones.” No one said anything. “Then it’s time to begin. And remember. No magic. We are watching.” Ediltrude disappeared, leaving the group of freshman.
“Great… No magic. And we get to go up against vicious plants.” Lucy grumbled. Valkyrie shook her head.
“They’re only vicious if you’re loud. So remember to stay as quiet as possible.” Valkyrie reminded her. She closed her eyes, focusing on which way to go.
‘Left.’ Her dragon spoke, clear and precise. She grabbed Crystal’s wrist. “This way.” She led her friend down the left side of the bog, being careful to avoid the bubbles of the swamp.
“What do you think those bubbles are?” Crystal asked.
“Medusa gas if I had to guess… Remember the time we vacationed at the Wildlands… And we almost got turned to stone…?” Valkyrie chuckled. “I mean… It’s funny now… But back then…”
“We were terrified ten year olds.” Crystal shook her head. “I just hope the other witches won’t get stuck…”
“Same here…” Valkyrie admitted. “I thought of waiting on Lucy, but the Linphean triplets called her first. And Mirta went with Polly and Lunilla.”
“The only witches worth talking too these days… Unless you want to deal with the ones who moon over the Trix.” Crystal put her hands behind her head. “I mean… it’s like the whole school wants to worship them.”
“If only the school knew who they were.” Valkyrie glowered. “If only they could see…” Crystal shook her head.
“Can’t wish that… I mean… think about it. If they’re evil purely because of who their ancestors are… What does that make you? I mean… Your dad is in Omega. Your dad was charged with the murders of the Domino royal family… So does that mean you’re going to turn power hungry and homicidal?” Valkyrie groaned.
“No…” She sighed. “I get your point, Crys… But… I can’t shake that feeling…” Crystal placed a hand on her smaller friend’s shoulder.
“Just focus on us surviving today. After all, we do have a date with those plants.”
“Yay.” Valkyrie deadpanned.
It had taken some doing and some coaxing of the plants, but Valkyrie and Crystal couldn’t help but grin as they presented their newly potted Quietus Carnivorous baby plant to Professor Ediltrude. The older witch hummed, looking the sapling over.
“You did well… But because it is just a baby, I’m giving you both Bs.” Ediltrude looked to Valkyrie. “Not bad for a first assignment. And remember to check with the nurse about that cut. Wouldn’t want an infection.”
Valkyrie frowned. “Cut…?” She looked at her arm. Sure enough, there was a decent sized cut and it was bleeding.
Crystal swore softly, rushing to her friend and pulling out a bandage from her bag. “Always come prepared…” She helped Valkyrie wrap it up. “I bet that Momma Quietus managed to get you… You were awfully close.”
“I was trying to block her from hitting you. She had a huge boulder in her vines…” Valkyrie winced. “Easy.”
“Done.” Crystal stood. “Come on… We’re going to make sure Nurse Hydei sees you.” Valkyrie gave a smirk.
“Awww, you do care.”
Chapter 7: Chapter Seven: The Gloomy Wood Blossom
- The Gloomy Wood Blossom
“Now class, during the War for Magic, witches worked on both sides. Many who were angry and ready to revolt joined with the Ancient Coven. The others were just as angry about the treatment of witches, but decided that working to stop the genocide the Ancestral Witches were planning would prove they weren’t all evil.” Professor Eldoran lectured, using magic to show news reels from the Great War.
Valkyrie kept her head down when she noticed a shot of her mother fighting alongside Faragonda, hoping no one would notice the resemblance. (Last names were one thing, they were common… But a resemblance…?)
“The War did manage to bring changes to the magical realm and it made the council see witches for what we really are.” The pink haired witch gave a smile. “We’re neutral beings who tend to lean a little more toward chaos. We keep the balance from tipping too close to the light side of things. And we’re good at it.” She noticed the time.
“Before we dismiss today, I want you all to be thinking of a witch or dark magic wizard who was in the Great War for your mid-term reports. It can be someone from either side, but it needs to be someone considered important.” She leaned against her desk. “Class dismissed.” She said, right as the bell rang.
Valkyrie grabbed her bag, heading toward the door, when Professor Eldoran stopped her. “I can’t wait to see what you write, Ms. Sylvane. I expect an incredible report from you.” The professor gave a wicked smile. Valkyrie shrugged.
“Don’t get your hopes up too high, Professor…” She warned, heading into the hallway. She just had one more class today and she could relax. (Okay, so going ahead and doing her homework before dinner wasn’t exactly relaxing, but it helped keep her weekends free…)
“The Gloomy Wood Blossom only blooms during the month of October. Now, while this flower is exquisitely beautiful to look upon, be wary of its scent and its pollen. If the pollen touches your skin, it will create a rash and if you inhale too much of the scent, it will knock you unconscious.” Professor Bittersmoke showed images of the plant.
It really was a beautiful flower. The flower had large petals, each colored a different shade of blue or purple. The petals seemed to have white lines around them, a feel of power surrounding them. The witches couldn’t help but ooh and ahh.
“Yes… As I said…. It’s beautiful but potentially deadly. Gloomy Wood forest is home to some of the most dangerous magical creatures in Magix and if the Gloomy Wood Blossom knocks you out… You could be werewolf chow… Or worse.” Bittersmoke reminded them.
Crystal leaned back in her chair a bit. “So what sort of potions can we make from the plant…? Or should we talk to Professor Zarathustra about it?” She asked.
“The only potions that can be made from the Gloomy Wood Blossom are considered too dangerous to create and are forbidden from use.” Bittersmoke looked the class over. “And if any of you are caught trying to create a potion using the Gloomy Wood Blossom, you will not only be expelled from Cloud Tower, but the Council will have you sent to Light Rock Lake.”
The girls groaned, some shaking their heads. “Sorry ladies, but that’s how it works.” He changed the image to a different plant. “Now onto something you should be familiar with by now, the Quietus Carnivorous…”
“Hey… So I just realized that it’s the last day of September. So that means tonight the Gloomy Wood Blossom will be blooming, right?” Valkyrie asked. She and Crystal were working on their History of Dark Magic essays in their room.
Crystal turned around from facing her desk to facing Valkyrie’s side of the room. “Yeah… Why? It’s not like we can really do anything with it. Professor Bittersmoke made that quite clear.” Crystal reminded.
“I don’t want to take the blossom… I just want to… See it bloom.” Valkyrie said. Cheshire made a noise, his tail twitching. “That is the truth, Ches.” She chastised the cat.
Crystal shook her head. “You sure about that? You want to see the blossom bloom tonight? You? And not, oh… I don’t know… A certain fairy from Alfea?” Crystal teased, pushing her hair brunette hair back.
Valkyrie flushed a bit. “Okay… So maybe I thought I’d show Flora the plant too… I mean… It’s right up her alley.” Crystal laughed.
“Oh you have it sooo bad, Val.” The gem witch laughed. “I can’t believe how hard you’ve fallen and the two of you aren’t even a thing.”
Valkyrie tossed a pencil at her roommate. “Shut up! Okay? Kota would do the same for you if he had any class.” Crystal sighed.
“I wish I could talk to him more. He’s been so busy with classes, he’s swamped at the end of the day. It’s a miracle when we get to have a Saturday anymore.” Crystal pouted a bit. “Stupid specialist drills.”
Patches gave a meow. “I know. You miss your Daddy too.” Crystal cooed at her cat, picking the little calico up.
Valkyrie chuckled. “Now who’s got it bad?” She teased. Crystal rolled her eyes.
“So… How are you going to view the flower anyway? Sneak out of Cloud Tower and onto Alfea’s campus? Manage to survive Gloomy Wood Forest at night?” Crystal asked. Valkyrie smirked.
“I have some ideas. I just need a little… Help… You did perfect that duplication spell, right?” Valkyrie asked. Crystal swore.
“Of course... Why am I not surprised that I’m part of this?” She asked. Valkyrie walked over, taking her friend’s hand.
“Consider it an early birthday gift for me? After all, by midnight it’ll be my birth month.” She pleaded. Crystal sighed.
“Fine. Fine. But you owe me. You soooo owe me.” Valkyrie chuckled and hugged her friend.
“You know you love me.”
Valkyrie waited until 10, making sure that she’d have plenty of time to leave. She cast a quick spell, creating a near perfect double of herself. (This one had her pajamas on, a long t-shirt with a cat on it and blue pajama bottoms.)
The double went and laid down on the bed, knowing that it was meant to pretend to be sleeping. Valkyrie grabbed her bag and teleported outside of castle grounds, making her way toward Alfea.
She had to admire the night, the moon was full, the stars were out… It wasn’t too warm or too chilly… Just… Perfect.
She managed to slip onto the campus without being caught and made her way around to the side she knew Flora’s dorm was on.
Normally, she’d send a text to let the fairy know she was there, but she couldn’t bring herself to do something so simple. Not for Flora…
Valkyrie concentrated her magic, knocking on the window of the dorm. The light flashed on and the window opened. A familiar redhead leaned out the window, her hair mussed. “Hello? Valkyrie? Do you know what time it is?”
The witch gave a smile. “It’s the witching hour, what can I say?” She teased. “Is Flora still up?” She asked. The redhead seemed to perk up a bit and went back into the room. The next face she saw was Flora’s.
She leaned against the window, and Valkyrie could tell she was smiling. “What brings you here, Valkyrie? I figured you were working on assignments.”
“I came here because I wanted to show you something…” She extended a hand toward the window. “It’s at Gloomy Wood, and I know that sounds scary, but you have to trust me on this one.” Valkyrie tried to assure the fairy. “Please.”
Flora seemed to contemplate the idea. “Okay. Just give me a second.” The fairy leaned over the window and waved her hand. A vine came to life, wrapping around her and bringing her down. Valkyrie rushed over, helping making sure she got to the ground in one piece. Flora giggled.
“So where in Gloomy Wood are we going?” Valkyrie smiled, extending her hand.
“Just follow me.”
Valkyrie led them through the thicket, keeping a small orb of light so they could see. “So what’s out here anyway?” Flora asked.
“Something special… I learned about it today in my herbology class… Professor Bittersmoke said this was something incredible. And…” Valkyrie grinned at the clearing. “We’re here.”
Flora looked around. “I don’t see it…” She crossed her arms. “Are you sure?” Valkyrie grinned.
“You’ll see it soon.” She pulled out her phone. “In just a few minutes…” She gestured to fallen log. “Come on, let’s have a seat.” She went to sit down, waiting as Flora joined her. She opened her bag, handing the fairy a water bottle. “Thirsty? It was a long hike.”
Flora grinned, taking the bottle and taking a sip. “Thank you.” She paused, her eyes lighting up. “Val, look!” She gestured to the field.
Flowers began to spring up, their petals unfurling and seeming to glow in the moonlight. Flora was quick, getting her phone and taking pictures. “This is so incredible! Are these the Gloomy Wood Blossoms?!” She asked.
Valkyrie laughed, a warm feeling swelling around her. “Yeah, it is. And today is the first of October. They’re beginning to bloom.” She stood, walking over to Flora. “Just be careful not to breathe in too deeply… they’re potent.”
“I know… But to see a whole field of them this close?” She took a breath. “It’s beautiful.” She turned and pulled Valkyrie into a hug, making the witch flush. “Thank you so much for bringing me here.”
Valkyrie flushed when they pulled away, running a hand through her hair. “I… I thought you’d like it. And I figured you’d appreciate getting to see them when they first bloom…” Flora grinned.
“It was incredible.” She took Valkyrie’s hand. “You’re incredible for thinking of this.” Flora kissed her cheek. “Thank you.”
Yep… Valkyrie was going to die. Her heart was racing and she was sure her face was bright red by now. And Flora was still holding her hand… Oh this was not well thought out….
“I don’t think I’d go that far.” Valkyrie said when she found her voice. Her phone vibrated and she took her hand from Flora’s (why…) and checked the message. Crystal. “It’s late… Do you want me to walk you back to Alfea?” Valkyrie asked.
“I’d appreciate that.” The fairy seemed to glow, retaking Valkyrie’s hand.
The pair walked back into the thicket of Gloomy Wood Forest, toward the entrance to Alfea…
They made it to the entrance of Alfea, and Valkyrie released Flora’s hand. “So… I guess I’ll see you later?” Valkyrie asked. Flora grinned.
“Of course. Anytime we’re not too busy with school.” She played with a strand of her hair. “Do me a favor, Valkyrie?” The witch tilted her head, confused.
“Sure… What sort of favor?”
“Let me know when you make it back to Cloud Tower safely. Otherwise I wouldn’t be able to sleep.” Flora chuckled. “I mean… After the excitement of tonight, I probably won’t anyway… But I’d rather not have a negative connotation.” Valkyrie gave a smile and pushed her glasses up.
“Don’t worry… I’ll make sure to let you know when I’ve made it back.” She laughed. “And tell Bloom I’m sorry for waking her.”
“I have a feeling she’ll be forgiving.” The fairy started toward her school, giving a wave. “Goodnight, Valkyrie.”
“Goodnight, Flora.” Valkyrie waved back. She stayed put, waiting until she saw the fairy go back into her dorm room by her vine friend before she left. Oh if the fairy only knew how gone she was…
The text was sent, the double was gone, and Valkyrie was able to climb into bed with Cheshire with minimal problems. (Granted, she was glad there wasn’t any problems, but something did feel off…)
(She found out the next day that she had been caught by Zarathustra. One week of service in the detention dimension. But it was worth it to see the way Flora lit up.)
Chapter 8: Chapter Eight: Disasters and Birthdays
- Disasters and Birthdays
Valkyrie managed to dodge the fiery blast, getting behind a pillar. “Crystal, I could use some back up!” She called out.
Crystal jumped down from her tower, channeling her power. A giant crystal chrysalis appeared, shielding the two witches from the blasts. “Okay, what’s your gut telling you?” Crystal asked. She was straining against the monster’s blasts.
Valkyrie closed her eyes, trying to feel out the answer. “Bring down the shield and get out of the way!” She called. The taller witch gave a confused look but shrugged, doing as she was told. As soon as the shield disappeared, Crystal made herself scarce.
Valkyrie stepped up, feeling the negative energy around Cloud Tower and summoning it to her. “You’re fire may be hot, but mine is scorching. Beast of fire you can’t compare to the flames of disaster.” She chanted, dark flames appearing around the monster.
The flames grew brighter and the heat from them could be felt over the field. Valkyrie turned to Crystal, giving a nod.
“Crystals come forth and use the sun, bring the heat and burn this bum.” The other witch cast, a large crystal appearing in the sky. It delegated power from the sunlight to increase the power of Valkyrie’s spell, the monster quickly becoming ash.
Claps and applause could be heard as the two witches made it back to the center. Ms. Griffin pulled down the veil that was protecting the other students from the fight and stepped onto the field. “Brava ladies… Brava. But next time you go up against a beast like this, remember that you can create water. A fire on fire attack may not always work.”
“Yes, Ms. Griffin.” Crystal gave a slight nod.
“Yes, Headmistress.” Valkyrie gave a bow. Griffin gave a smile.
“Now, having said that, the two of you do work impressively together and play off each other’s powers.” She looked to the other witches in the class. “A witch is only as strong as her connection to her coven. I’m not trying to sound… Like a fairy…. But magic is naturally stronger together. It’s why fairies have convergences and we have our covens.”
“Which is why we do these exercises so you can find other witches who are on a similar wavelength power wise, and someone who you can… Trust. I know it’s hard, witches aren’t inherently trusting, but if you have a coven, they need to be able to trust you.” She looked the ladies over.
“If you need an example, I’m in a coven with a few other teachers here at Cloud Tower. We channel through each other. It’s part of why we’re formidable.” Griffin gave a look to a few other freshman. “I think you two should be up next. Euphorbia and Lucrezia.”
Valkyrie and Crystal moved off-field to take their seats while the newly called witches went to the field.
Ms. Griffin put the shield back up and brought in a massive shadow creature. “Begin.” She ordered, watching as the two witches began trying to figure out how to work together.
Crystal leaned against Valkyrie, a smirk on her lips. “So… I was thinking after classes, we ditch Cloud Tower and head to that place you and Morgan went to… The White Horse?”
“I mean… we could… But… Why are you looking at me like that?” Valkyrie asked/whispered.
“Did you forget your birthday? Okay… Technically it’s tomorrow… but since we have that trip… I thought we could celebrate today…” Crystal gave a smile. “Come on… It’d be fun. You, me, Kota, and Morgan…” She gave a wink. “And I bet if you asked a certain fairy…”
Valkyrie playfully hit her. “She doesn’t want to be part of that. I promise.”
“I don’t know… Sounded like your date last week went well… Even if you did get detention. Why not celebrate and let her join us for your birthday?” Valkyrie looked down.
“Because… She’s a fairy. I’m a witch. And… Everything else.” Valkyrie sighed. “Besides… I’m pretty sure one of those Red Fountain guys has his eye on her. They’d be stupid not to.” Crystal smirked.
“Yeah… But none of those guys are the most powerful witch in the known realms.” Valkyrie scoffed.
“My power doesn’t make me the strongest witch. And you know that. It’s-”
“Not the power you have but how you use it? Yeah. I know. I’ve heard your mother give that speech a thousand times to us as kids.” Crystal placed an arm around Valkyrie. “But mark my words, Val, before you graduate from Cloud Tower, you will be the most fearsome and incredible witch these realms have ever seen.”
Valkyrie gave a half-smile. “Fine. I’ll text her after class.”
“You ready?” Crystal asked, grabbing her bag. “Kota said he’d meet us there and Morgan’s probably there already.” Valkyrie grabbed her own bag, petting Cheshire.
“I’m ready… Flora won’t be joining us… Something happened with her friend Stella and…” Valkyrie paused. “Stella… Princess Stella…” She swore. “Were the Trix coven in class today, or do you know?”
Crystal frowned. “They’re seniors, we don’t have the same classes as them.” Valkyrie swore.
“I know… I know… But they’ve been after Princess Stella’s ring… and if something happened with Stella…” Valkyrie sighed. “But it doesn’t matter right now… Right now, I need to spend time with my best friends.” She gave a smile.
Crystal wrapped an arm around her. “That’s the spirit, Vally baby.” Valkyrie shot her a glare.
“Seriously? Vally? You haven’t called me that since third grade.” Crystal laughed.
“Ah… But that was an important year, just like this year will be. I mean… You’re turning the big 15. Granted, I’ve been 15 for a while now… But you… It’s important. Though… You better hope that growth spurt comes in.” Valkyrie glared.
“Hey! I’m a decent height. Five foot tall is totally acceptable.”
“Yeah. For an imp.” Crystal teased. “Don’t worry, I love you anyway.” She kissed her cheek. “Come on, we don’t want to be late.” She looked to the cats. “You two play nice and we’ll bring back some catnip mice.”
Patches and Cheshire rose up from where they were cuddled on top of the wardrobes. They purred, stretching a bit. Valkyrie chuckled, letting Crystal lead her out.
They made it to the White Horse. “Now where…” Crystal grinned. “There they are.” She gestured to a table on the outside. Morgan had her hair done up in braided bun, wearing a flowy pink dress. Kota’s brown/black hair was fluffed up a bit due to his curls. He didn’t have to wear his specialist uniform, so he was in his normal clothes, jeans and a graphic t-shirt (I sit with the witches.).
“Look who decided to show up!” He teased, getting up to hug Crystal close. He’d made it the six foot mark over summer, making him tower over her. Crystal grinned, hugging him tight.
“Sorry, I had to convince birthday girl to come on. She’s been in a mood since her trip to the detention dimension.” Crystal teased, taking the seat by Kota.
Valkyrie rolled her eyes, sitting between Crystal and Morgan. Her cousin chuckled, taking a sip from her drink. “Most of Alfea has heard of ‘the romantic’ night Flora had. Stella cannot keep her mouth shut, and I guess Flora told her. Though I’m certain the version going around is a bit different than what really happened.”
“Some of us at Red Fountain heard too… You’ve really pissed off Prince Kalshan from Altarus… He apparently had his eye on her.” Kota teased. Valkyrie groaned, putting her hand to her forehead.
“All I did was take her to Gloomy Wood to see the blossom. That’s all that happened.” Valkyrie turned to glare at Kota. “Who has his eyes where?” She half growled.
Morgan chuckled. “Temper, temper, Cousin… We wouldn’t want that side of you to show. Not with those three still at Cloud Tower anyway.” Kota tilted his head.
“You talking about those senior girls…?”
“Yeah… Valkyrie has it in for them. And they don’t exactly like her either.” Crystal laughed. Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“They’re the descendants of those hags who murdered my dragon…” Valkyrie glowered. “The grudge is mostly his…”
“Yeah… But it spills out into you.” Kota reminded. “I mean… I know you haven’t forgotten…” He rolled up his sleeve. The matching scar.
“You shouldn’t have used that Illusion…” Valkyrie retorted. Crystal cleared her throat.
“Before we start trying to rehash that… I say we order and try to talk about something less destructive… Like how classes are going…? I mean… Morgan… One of your classes is with your Papa… That’s gotta be weird.”
Morgan shrugged. “Only if you let it be… I just remind myself I’m no better than any other student and he’s just another teacher.”
“Same with how I’m doing with Mom.” Valkyrie sighed. “Not that it helps when her covenmates are also your teachers.”
“I’m actually taking a class with Professor Salvador at Red Fountain… It’s really helping me channel my magic into my weapon.” Kota jumped in.
“Weapon? What did they trust you with?” Valkyrie snarked.
“A broadsword, thank you very much. And in my signature color. Red.” He gave a wink to Crystal. Morgan chuckled.
“Awww… So sickeningly sweet.” She teased. Valkyrie smirked.
“I could only imagine how much sicker it’d be if a certain someone was still here…” Morgan glowered.
“And just who are you referring to, Cousin Dearest?” Morgan asked. Kota chuckled, catching on.
“I think she’s talking about Helia.” He answered. Morgan scoffed.
“I don’t know why. Helia was just a friend. Our friend. Collectively. Until he decided to live with his dad and go to that art school.” She looked away. “Not that it matters anymore…”
Crystal shook her head. “Sylvane’s man… You guys really fall hard, huh?”
Both Morgan and Valkyrie glared. “Shut it!” They both called.
They were all laughing about the antics they’d been up to at their respective schools. The trouble and mischief caused. “Um… Excuse me…” A soft voice called.
Valkyrie immediately turned around, along with Morgan. “Oh I didn’t mean to intrude.” Flora shrunk back a bit. “I was just…”
“Hey… It’s okay.” Valkyrie couldn’t help but smile. “Did you want to join us?” She asked.
“Yeah… There’s plenty of room.” Crystal grinned. “All we’re doing is talking about assignments and our plans for the Day of the Rose. I mean… It’s coming up…”
“And we’re teasing Valkyrie a bit.” Kota snickered.
“And trying to keep everyone from killing each other.” Morgan smirked, turning to Flora. “What do you say?”
Flora sighed. “I wish I could… But Stella’s run off and we don’t know what’s happened… I mean… We think she got majorly spelled last night… And… And she and Bloom had a fight where she threw a chair!” Flora shook her head, worry emanating from her. Valkyrie took her hand.
“Relax… I’m sure she’s fine. Your friend is probably working off some sort of increased anger potion someone slipped her. But she’ll be okay.” Valkyrie tried to reassure the fairy.
Flora shrugged. “I hope so…” She paused. “Hey… Have any of you heard of something called the Blue Lagoon? It’s supposed to be some sort of club or something…”
Valkyrie frowned and turned to her friends. “I haven’t…”
“No… Sounds fishy though.” Crystal hummed. “Like… The place sounds familiar…”
“Isn’t that the name of where the mermaids hung out in that one Earth-based story….? Peter Pan or something?” Morgan asked.
“No… It’s from the Hyde movie series.” Kota argued. Valkyrie shook her head.
“I hate those movies… How you guys watch them is beyond me.” She complained. Morgan snickered.
“Imagine that, a witch who hates horror films.”
“Not all horror films… Just ones that deal with children… I’ve met some creepy kids before and those movies just make those encounters worse.” Valkyrie defended. Flora couldn’t help but laugh at the two.
“It’s fine. I’m not a fan of them either.” She looked at the time. “I’ve got to go… I need to meet with the others and see if they’ve found out anything…” She looked to Valkyrie. “And I hope you have a great birthday, Valkyrie… Maybe we can find time to hang out over the weekend?”
Valkyrie fought back the flush. “Sure. Maybe we can catch a movie or something.” Flora grinned, waving.
“See you. Oh and Kota… Please tell Kalshan that I’m not interested. I’m tired of deleting the emails.” Flora said, walking off.
When she was out of earshot, Kota couldn’t help but chuckle. “Aww… I think she likes you too, Valkyrie…” Valkyrie flushed.
Walking back into their dorm, Valkyrie couldn’t help but smile. A small present was laid on Valkyrie’s bed, a small note attached. “Who’s that from?” Crystal asked.
Valkyrie looked over the note. “From Mom and my uncles…” She opened the gift and grinned. “Just what I wanted. It’s the book of myths and legends.”
Crystal chuckled. “Another long list of things you and your mom have in common. A love for knowledge.” Valkyrie shot a glare.
“Seriously?” She rolled her eyes. “Oh whatever.” She reached for her new book before she fell to the ground. There was a power surge and she could feel it surrounding her, overloading her.
She let out a growl, a trickle of her power began messing with the lights and broke one of the windows. She winced, trying to get back up after it ended. Crystal had shielded herself, letting her barrier down.
“I… I think so…” Valkyrie sat up on the floor. “Someone is playing with things they shouldn’t though… And the energy just…”
“Made you snap? Or made him snap?” Crystal asked, crossing her arms. Valkyrie looked to her hands.
“I… I don’t know…” She looked to the window and waved her hand, fixing it. “I’m not going to worry about it now though… It won’t do me any good to be worried.” She took a breath. “I just… I need to refocus. That’s all.”
Crystal eyed her suspiciously. “If you say so… But if you freak out on me again… I’m getting your mother.”
“Fine by me…” Valkyrie got to her feet. “Maybe I should work on our project for Ediltrude?”
Chapter 9: Chapter Nine: Mission to Cloud Tower
- Mission to Cloud Tower
Valkyrie made her way into her mother’s office, making sure to appear as if she was just another student going for advice. Walking in, she cast the soundproof spell before sitting down.
“I take it this must be important?” Griffin suggested, raising an eyebrow. Valkyrie took a breath.
“Bloom and her friends at Alfea are researching the Great Dragons. Apparently a book from their restricted vault came to her and… Well now they’re asking questions.” Valkyrie swallowed. “I want to try and answer what I can. But I wanted to let you know first.” Griffin frowned.
“Please tell me you haven’t lost your mind over that fairy, Flora…? Is she the one asking?” She asked. Valkyrie glowered.
“She made the request, but it’s Bloom who bothers me. I can’t help but shake the feeling I know her, that he knows her. And… I want her to know. I mean… I feel like it’s the right move.” She took a breath. “Besides. They only want to know the relation of the dragons to Stella’s ring. Apparently it was stolen. And I’ll give you three guesses as to who they say took it.”
Griffin scowled. “Those three wouldn’t dare.”
“But what if they did, Mother? I’m telling you, something isn’t right with those three. And it’s not just because of who their grandmothers are.” She stood, heading for the door. “I believe the fairies… There was a massive power surge last night… I broke a window. I mean… I fixed it… But…”
“But the balance was tipping…” Griffin took a breath. “Go. Tell what you want… But do not engage Icy, Darcy, and Stormy.”
“I won’t.” Valkyrie promised, heading out. She sent a text to Flora, letting her know where to meet.
Flora arrived with the other four in tow. Valkyrie looked the fairies over. “You may wanna take a seat for this… It’s a long story…”
“Ms. Faragonda explained a little bit… How the Great Dragon created the fairy realms… and… How the realm it rested on died.” Bloom said.
“Yeah… And how my ring is somehow linked to the Dragon’s power.” Stella sat down on a grassy area. “So… Do you have anything new to add?”
“Hey, watch the ‘tude. She’s trying to help.” Musa reminded her friend, taking a seat. “Go on, Valkyrie, what’s the 411?”
Valkyrie took a breath. “Okay… So Faragonda’s version is right… But it’s not complete… In fact it left off an important part… When the universe was created, one dragon wasn’t all that was made… It was two. The dark and the light dragons… Or… As some people refer… The Great Dragon and the Dark Dragon.” Valkyrie began.
“Neither were exactly good or evil. Just dark and light. The light dragon created the light realms, giving fresh life and beauty to them before she passed away in her sleep on a realm called Domino. But before she passed away, she cast a spell. Her soul would merge with the ruler of Domino and the heirs thereafter, to help them rule in a benevolent and kind way.” Valkyrie looked down at the next part.
“The Dark Dragon… He created the dark realms, to counteract the light realms. Where there is darkness, there has to be light. And he knew that. There had to be a balance. He breathed life into the dark realms, giving them a haunting beauty all their own.” She bit her lip.
“But he didn’t get to pass away in his sleep like his counterpart did. Instead… He was murdered by a coven of extremely powerful witches. They used these crystals, the Whisperian Crystals, to trap him and drain his power. Rather than be used as a pawn, he allowed himself to die.”
“He merged his soul with the ruler of Obsidian. The witches were too exhausted to try again, so they bided their time. It wasn’t long before they attacked the monarchy though, and killed everyone to try and get to the power… And when they failed… The decided to raise the young prince as their own… They used him, trained him up, and set him loose on the Magical Dimension, along with their ever-growing Coven.”
“They attacked Domino to make the magical dimension bow to them and their superiority, but they didn’t make it. The rulers of Domino beat them… At the cost of their realm… Now both Domino and Obsidian are considered dead. Balanced.” Valkyrie sighed. “That’s the version I learned about.”
Tecna frowned. “But it doesn’t explain how it ties in with Stella’s ring, now does it?” Valkyrie turned to face the violet-haired fairy.
“You wanted to hear about the Great Dragons… So I told you.” She looked to Stella. “My guess about the ring? Solaria is close to Domino… The Great Dragon most likely created the ring to help the rulers of Solaria harness their powers. If Icy, Darcy, and Stormy have your ring, they may be wanting it to draw out the powers of the dragon.”
“But wouldn’t it make more sense for them to try and get the Dark Dragon’s powers instead?” Flora asked. Valkyrie paused.
“That’s the thing though… No one really knows about the Dark Dragon… Not even most witches. The only reason I know about it is because my mom was part of the Great Magic War.” Valkyrie admitted.
Stella swore. “My parents were too… They don’t talk about it much though…” She looked down. “Maybe something bad happened there…? I mean… Majorly bad.”
Valkyrie shrugged. “Probably.” Her phone went off. “I’ve got to go… Professor Zarathustra is wanting to do a field trip into Lagoona Swamp.” She looked to the fairies. “If you’re going after those three… Be careful… They’re stronger than you realize.”
And with that, she teleported off, hoping she did something that helped.
“Want to help me out, Discorda, or are you just going to fly there and look pretty?” Valkyrie hissed at the pixie. The little woman scoffed.
“I don’t even know why you’re in here so late… You should be in bed. Or at the least in your room.” Discorda argued. Valkyrie frowned.
“I’m working on a project… This is the best place to work so I don’t disturb Crystal… Now are you going to help me find that book or not?” She asked. The pixie sighed.
“What book are you even looking for?” Valkyrie took a breath.
“The History of Dark Magic… And not that abridged crap from our textbooks. I need the truth.” Discorda grumbled, but complied, bringing a few books down.
“Here. But don’t say I didn’t warn you.” Valkyrie was about to retort when she felt something inside her.
‘She’s here.’ Her dragon whispered. “I’ve got to go… Thanks, Discorda…” She grabbed the books and walked out of the book chamber, watching as a group of fairies flew by.
They were being chased by Red Catapoes, the little creatures running as fast as they could. Valkyrie glared and cast a spell, making each catapoe crumble. “Thanks for the help!” Stella grinned, flying down.
“Yeah, we thought we were a goner.” Musa laughed. Flora, Tecna, and Bloom flew down by Valkyrie.
The purple-haired witch frowned. “What are you girls even doing here?” She asked. “I mean… Do you know how bad it’ll be if you’re caught here?”
“We had to get my ring back from those witches.” Stella defended.
“And… We may have tripped an alarm of some sort… which is why those Red Catapoes were after us.” Flora swallowed. “We didn’t mean to.”
“That defense never holds up, believe me.” A voice called from behind. Griffin had materialized behind the fairies, arms crossed. Valkyrie glared and got between the fairies and the headmistress.
“We just wanted to get Stella’s ring back, Headmistress… We didn’t want to cause any trouble.” Bloom tried. Griffin shook her head.
“You should have went through Faragonda… Now how best to punish you…?” The older witch started.
“No. You can’t punish them for fighting back.” Valkyrie spoke. The fairies gasped a bit, worried about how this would go over.
“Excuse me?” Griffin asked, glowering.
“It’s not their fault that Icy, Darcy, and Stormy stole that ring. And I’m betting they wanted it because of its link to the Great Dragons. I mean, we both know who they are, Mother, we can’t let them slide for this.”
“Mother?!” The girls asked. Valkyrie huffed.
“What? Don’t see the family resemblance? Granted, I’m the small sheep in the family, but whatever.” Valkyrie spelled her hair, letting it create her mother’s spiral bun.
“I didn’t see that coming…” Valkyrie shook her head, her hair falling back down.
Griffin looked the girls over. “Fine. Get out. But I’m still alerting Faragonda to the five of you sneaking in.” She looked over to Valkyrie. “And this is strike two for you, young lady.”
“Another week in the detention dimension?” She asked, sighing.
“Worse. You’ll be assisting the dungeon monsters with cleaning.” She looked to the fairies. “Are you still here?” The fairies looked to Valkyrie before flying off, Stella opening a portal.
“So… The dungeon monsters?” Valkyrie asked.
“Yes. Starting tomorrow. Go to bed.” Griffin growled out, making her way up the stairs. Valkyrie gave a sigh… Could have been worse…
She could have had her powers taken…
Chapter 10: Chapter Ten: Grounded
Valkyrie kept her focus as she helped Hiale and Sai with the dungeons. Simple work. Keep the castle clean, and keep patrol. “Hey… The two of you know all that goes on in this castle, right?” Valkyrie asked.
The two creatures shared a look. “We do, young witch, but we don’t think we can help you with what you seek.” The spoke in unison. Valkyrie frowned.
“All I need is to know what those three Ancestral Wannabes are planning.” She glowered. “I have to know…”
“Is it you who wishes to know, or the creature that lies beneath your skin?” They asked. She growled.
“Fine. Talk in riddles. But if those three bring about the destruction of the Magical Dimension, I want you to remember this moment.” She seethed, taking a breath. ‘Calm down… You need to calm down.’ She thought to herself.
“What do I need to do next? I finished the cells.” She stated. The creatures shook their heads.
“Go to bed and rest, Witchling. We will see you tomorrow evening.” Valkyrie sighed.
“Alright. Goodnight boys…” She grabbed her bag, making her way up to her dorm room. She didn’t even make it in good when she collapsed on her bed, exhaustion taking her.
Valkyrie kept her mouth shut. It was breakfast and time for the morning announcements. She didn’t need to get into any more trouble… But the taunting was getting hard to ignore.
“What’s the matter, Mirta? Your little friendship spells not wanting to work?” Darcy teased.
“I think we have ourselves a pixie wannabe.” Icy cackled.
“Think she’ll sprout wings?” Stormy taunted. Mirta kept her head down, trying to make herself smaller.
“Don’t do it.” Crystal whispered to her. “You’re already in trouble.”
‘They don’t deserve the title of witch.’ A familiar voice spoke, full of anger and rage. Her dragon had never led her astray before…
“I have to do something.” She whispered, standing up. “Hey Trix, why not pick on someone your own power level?” She smirked. “I mean, come on… How pathetic do you have to be to be a senior messing with a freshman? That’s just sad.” Valkyrie shrugged. “Though, I guess i shouldn’t be surprised. You’re not exactly the brightest witches in the realms.”
The three seniors surrounded her quickly. “You wanna say that again, Shrimp?” Darcy glowered.
“Or can you even say it to our faces?” Icy quipped.
“You should be scared.” Stormy said. Valkyrie snorted.
“Scared of what? The three of you are just second-rate witches.” She stood on one of the chairs, making herself eye level. “The three of you are pathetic. You don’t even deserve the title of witch.” She crossed her arms. “No… You really don’t.”
The cafeteria was silent as the other witches listened in, murmurs and whispers starting to spread. Icy grabbed her arm, not wanting to look weak.
“Keep talking, Wiatch, we’ll see how well you do on ice.” She snarled. Valkyrie glared.
The ice was cold, freezing cold. But it wouldn’t do any good. Valkyrie felt her body heat up, her aura changing. Icy swore, pulling her hand away, steam coming from her hand. “What’s the matter Icy? Am I too hot to handle?” She tilted her head.
“You insolent little-” Stormy started, electricity cackling around her. She didn’t get to finish her sentence before Zarathustra teleported between them.
“Ladies, you know the rules. There is no fighting outside of the field. If you wish to settle this properly, a challenge must be issued.” Zarathustra turned to the Trix. “And if you want a proper challenge, one of you needs to decide who fights in it.”
Stormy stepped up. “I’ll take her on. We’ll see how tough you really are.” Stormy glowered. Valkyrie gave a smile.
“Guess we will.” She turned to Zarathustra. “When?”
Zarathustra obviously hadn’t thought this far ahead. Probably assumed that neither side would go through with it. But rules were rules. “After classes at 4. The main field. I’ll let the Headmistress know.” She teleported off.
Stormy grinned. “See you then, Freshmeat.” Her and her sisters stalked off and Valkyrie retook her seat.
Mirta walked over, worry on her face. “You didn’t have to do that, Valkyrie… Now you’re…”
“What? In over my head?” She shrugged. “Wouldn’t be the first time. Won’t be the last.” She gave a smile. “Don’t worry about me, Mirta… I’ve got this.” Crystal groaned.
“You know… Ever since I’ve known you, I’ve noticed that when you use that phrase, you don’t really have it.” Crystal reminded her. Valkyrie gave a shrug.
“Someone has to show them that being bad is more than just picking on someone smaller and weaker.” She leaned back. “Don’t worry, I can handle Stormy.”
“I shouldn’t let this happen. I know I shouldn’t… But you’re so dead set on this…” Griffin shook her head. “And I can’t stop it after the challenge has been issued…” She looked to Valkyrie. “Do you know how bad this could go?”
“I do. And I’m willing to go through with the risk. Someone has to show those three that power isn’t everything.” She took a breath. “Besides… You did something similar when you were my age.”
“I challenged a sophomore… Not a senior.” Valkyrie gave a bit of a smile.
“I always was an overachiever.”
It was four o’clock and the entire campus was sitting on the field’s bleachers. The teachers had their seats above the field.
Valkyrie was on her end, Stormy on hers. Ms. Griffin teleported into the center. “Alright ladies, it’s time to go over the rules. No monster summoning. No weapons aside from your magic. And no outside help, not even from your coven if you belong to one.” She looked between the two girls.
“Do you understand?”
“Yes, Ms. Griffin.” Stormy chimed.
“Yes, Ma’am.” Valkyrie nodded. Griffin took a breath.
“Fine. You’ll start after I get the barrier up.” She teleported to her seat and combined her power with the other teachers. A barrier spread over the field.
The two witches waited until the dome cut off. Stormy wasted no time summoning tornadoes into the field.
Valkyrie stood her ground, focusing on the negative energy around her. A strong blast of dark energy escaped her and hit Stormy.
The frizzy-haired witch hit the barrier, making the tornadoes disappear. Stormy growled, standing up. “You’re so out of your league!” She threw her hands up, lightning striking the field.
Valkyrie growled when a bolt managed to hit her. Electricity flowed around her, a paralyzing feeling. Something snapped. Her aura changed.
The purple-haired witch stood, eyes reddened behind her glasses. “Was that supposed to hurt?” Valkyrie asked, her voice more sure of itself than it had been. Slightly deeper. More confident. “Because if so, that was pathetic.”
Stormy glowered, powering up for another assault with her lightning, creating whips. Valkyrie smirked, teleporting right behind the older witch. “Try this on for size.” She conjured a strong dark orb of energy, getting Stormy directly in the back.
Stormy growled, turning around and conjuring another twister. Valkyrie gave a dark chuckle, letting herself be sucked into the vortex.
The other witch let her guard down, sending lightning into the storm. The young witch fought back a wince, letting the power absorb into her. True, the lightning stung and the air was getting sucked out of her, but it would be worth it for what was planned.
She teleported out of it, right behind Stormy who had been cheering for her victory. Valkyrie summoned her power, creating a fiery ring of darkness. The heat was intense, burning hot and getting hotter as it hit Stormy.
The older witch let out a howl, falling to the ground. Valkyrie walked over, kicking at the other witch. She never moved. “Seems my work here is done.” She looked up to where Icy and Darcy were seething. “You two want a piece too?” She asked.
Before they could respond, the barrier came down and Ms. Griffin took the stage. “Get Stormy to the infirmary please.” She directed to the other two Trix members. Icy and Darcy rushed to their sister, helping her up and taking her off.
“This isn’t over, Valkyrie.” Icy snarled, walking away with her sisters. Valkyrie shook her head.
“Sure seems like it.” She paused, the anger and rage she’d felt dissipated. She felt someone hug her close, Crystal by the smell of the perfume.
“You were so awesome!” Crystal grinned, cheering. Valkyrie swallowed.
“Yeah… Awesome…” She looked to Ms. Griffin.
“I think you may need to head down to the infirmary too, Ms. Sylvane. You’re arms are bleeding from the lightning burns.” Griffin spoke. Valkyrie frowned, but looked at her arms.
Sure enough… They were bleeding.
“Come on… I’ll take you.” Crystal whispered, wrapping an arm around her. They started off the field when Ms. Griffin stopped them again.
“Before I forget, your punishment is lifted. Get some rest.” Griffin told Valkyrie, walking off. The purple-haired witch gave a weak smile.
“So… How did you do it?” Mirta asked. She and Lucy were hanging out in Crystal and Valkyrie’s dorm, eating snacks and watching The Witch of Sandha.
Valkyrie shrugged, being careful of her wrapped arms. “I don’t know… I just… Something snapped when Stormy electrocuted me… And… I don’t really remember much of the fight except that I was beyond pissed off.”
Crystal took a candy bar. “Well, I’m just glad you didn’t end up dead.”
“Yeah… I mean… Taking on one of the Trix sisters? That’s either really stupid or really brave.” Lucy agreed.
Valkyrie laid down on the floor, Cheshire coming to lay on her stomach. “Look, I just wanted to put them in their place for once… Just because they’re seniors, doesn’t mean they have the right to bully the rest of us.”
Crystal pet Patches, scratching under the cat’s chin. “Maybe not… But now you’ve thrown the entire power structure of Cloud Tower out of order… There’s literally a whole group of witches who want to bind you into their coven.”
“Yeah… I overheard Liss and Tabitha talking about that earlier.” Mirta pulled her knees to her chest. “But… I guess that’s your choice.”
Valkyrie rose up, holding Cheshire. “I don’t even know if I want a coven. I mean… There’s so much involved in making one… And…” She shook her head. “I don’t even know right now.”
“Well, I’d be honored to coven with you.” Lucy gave one of her rare smiles. “It’d be nice knowing someone like you had my back.” Valkyrie gave a smile.
“I’ll think about it…” Her phone went off. “Oh… this is interesting…” Crystal smirked.
“Is it from sweet, tanned, and flowery?” Crystal teased. Valkyrie gave her a look.
“Yeah. It’s inviting me to hang out with her and her friends and their… Guy friends.” She paused for a moment. “I want to go. But I feel so drained after today… And how would I explain my bandages?”
“Just tell the girl you were in a badass fight.” Lucy shrugged. “I mean, it’s the truth.”
“Who have you been seeing anyway?” Mirta asked, giving a teasing smile. “Someone we know?”
“No… Not exactly.” Valkyrie gave a sigh. “I’m not even sure if she and I are a thing…”
“Oh you are. You stood up to Ms. Griffin for her and you snuck out to show her that Gloomy Wood Blossom.” Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“You stood up to Ms. Griffin? Do you have a death wish?” Lucy asked. Valkyrie chuckled a bit.
“Everyone has to fight with their mother at some point.” She explained. She couldn’t help but laugh at the looks on Mirta and Lucy’s face. “What? Didn’t see the family resemblance? Or notice our last names were the same?” Valkyrie teased.
“Just… Not what anyone would expect…” Mirta admitted.
“Yeah…” Lucy paused. “Wait… Why is she so hard on you then?”
“Because I’m her child and I’m supposed to know better.” Valkyrie shrugged. Crystal paused the movie.
“Hey, focus…. You haven’t messaged her back yet.” Crystal reminded her.
“Yeah… But… I don’t even…”
“You should go. We can even help you out.” Mirta smiled. “I mean… You were in that fight because of me… Only fair I help you out.” She turned to Lucy. “Right?”
Lucy sighed. “Fine… We’ll help you out.” Valkyrie smiled.
“That’s great… But I’m not feeling up to it… I was serious when I said fighting with Stormy drained me…” Valkyrie grabbed her phone, sending a quick message of apology. “Come on… Start the movie back up!” Valkyrie laughed.
Chapter 11: Chapter Eleven: Catching Up
- Catching Up
She paced outside the gates of Alfea, waiting for Flora to come out. “Is there a problem, Ms. Sylvane?” A familiar voice called. Griselda. Valkyrie gave a smile.
“Hey, Aunt Griselda… I promise I’m here on good faith. All I’m doing is waiting on a friend.” Valkyrie promised. Griselda frowned, looking at her arms. They were still bandaged, her powers were slowly healing her, but the scars would stay and needed to keep from being irritated at the moment.
“What happened to you? Some sort of beast training?” Griselda asked. Valkyrie gave a sheepish smile.
“Let’s just say Mom and I aren’t so different… We both took on stronger opponents than we should have our freshmen years.” Griselda sighed.
“So who exactly are you waiting o-” Footsteps rushed over.
“Sorry I’m late, Valkyrie… I had to turn in a last minute paper to Professor Palladium.” Flora apologized, looking to Ms. Griselda. “Oh… Is she in trouble?” She asked.
Griselda sighed. “No. I guess not… You ladies have fun and be careful.” Griselda warned, walking off to stop a few sophomores from fighting on the quad. Flora gave a smile to Valkyrie.
“So tell me, how did you get out of dungeon monster duty?” Flora asked. Valkyrie showed her bandages.
“I may have stood up to a senior witch…” Flora paused.
“That… Wouldn’t have been Stormy would it? Because she had some major burns when she was caught here.” Valkyrie frowned.
“They came here?”
“Yeah… And they summoned a Minotaur. We were lucky the Red Fountain boys were here… And that Ms. Faragonda came in when she did.” Flora carefully took Valkyrie’s arms, looking at the bandages. “Did she hurt you?”
Valkyrie flushed a bit. “Not too bad… I mean… It wasn’t anything I couldn’t handle.” Valkyrie took her arms back gently. “Besides… Someone needed to take those witches down a peg.”
“I agree.” She took Valkyrie’s hand. “Come on… Let’s go before the movie starts or we won’t get good seats.” Valkyrie chuckled.
“Lead the way, Flora.”
Valkyrie and Flora had an agreement, Flora would get the tickets, and Valkyrie would get the snacks.
“You said cotton candy and popcorn? Right?” Valkyrie asked, holding the bag and bowl. Flora smiled.
“I did, thank you sweetie.” Flora took her snacks so Valkyrie would have an easier time with her own. Valkyrie tried not to flush at the name and led Flora toward their theatre. A new movie that was supposedly going to depict the ‘true story’ of the War on Magic.
“Are you sure about this movie, Flora? I mean… I get the feeling it’s going to be completely bogus.” Valkyrie popped a few pieces of popcorn into her mouth. Flora took a sip of her tea.
“Maybe so… But Tecna said the reviews were great… And even Ms. Faragonda was mentioning it to Professor Palladium…” Flora said. Valkyrie shrugged.
“If you say so.” She leaned back, waiting as the movie started.
It wasn’t bad. Sure the plotlines were falling through… And the focus was on some sort of romance between a prince from a dark realm and princess from a light realm. But it was decently made.
Of course, it helped that she was watching it with Flora, another child of parents who fought in the actual war and heard (a few) stories. It also helped that Flora kept holding her hand and whispering little jokes about the falling plots.
All in all, it wasn’t too bad…
“This place is incredible… I see why you and your cousin love it so much.” Flora hummed as she ate the sandwich she ordered. Valkyrie grinned, sipping on her chocolate milkshake.
“It was actually my uncles who found this place. But I gotta say, it does have some damn good food.” Valkyrie stretched a bit. “So what are you doing for the Day of the Rose?”
Flora smiled. “I’m going home. My parents miss me and I miss them. Not to mention my little sister will be there and I need to hear how middle school is treating her.” Flora chuckled.
“Aww. What’s her name? You two get along?” Valkyrie asked. Then she paused. “Sorry… That may be invasive… I just… I’m an only child so…”
“Oh don’t worry about it.” Flora chuckled. “Miele and I get along well. I mean, we have our moments… But I think that’s anyone who has a sibling.” She took a sip of her drink. “Aren’t you and Morgan sort of sibling like?” Valkyrie snickered.
“Sort of… I guess. But we never had to be together twenty-four/seven. You know?” Valkyrie shrugged. “But it’s for the best I’m an only child… Mom’s a single parent and I have my doubts she could handle two of me.” Valkyrie looked at her arms. “I mean… I’m already enough of a trouble-maker.”
Flora placed a hand on hers. “Hey… You’re not a trouble-maker, Valkyrie. You’re just not afraid to stand up to bullies. I mean… You said they were being mean to another freshman witch… It sounds like they deserved it.”
Valkyrie felt herself smile, carefully squeezing Flora’s hand. “I guess. Thanks.”
Flora grinned, taking another bite. She paused, looking to Valkyrie. “Wait, single mother? What about your father? Is… He not in the picture?” Flora asked. Valkyrie felt a surge hit her.
‘Traitorous bastard let us be abused.’ Her dragon snarled.
“My dad has never been in the picture. And as far as I’m concerned, he can drop dead.” Valkyrie looked to Flora, noting the shock on her face. “Hey, it’s not like I want to feel that way toward him… But he was not a good person. He was… Well to be blunt, he was a lackey for the Ancestral Witches and their coven.” Flora made a gasp.
“Oh my… Valkyrie I didn’t know.” Valkyrie shrugged.
“It’s fine. I’ve made my peace with it. He’s in Omega last Mom checked. Which is fine by me. I don’t need that sort of influence in my life.” Valkyrie sighed. “Look… If this is something that makes you wary of me…”
She felt the other’s hand back on hers. “Valkyrie, I don’t care about who your parents are or were… I trust you. I trust you.” Flora smiled. Valkyrie felt herself grin.
“Come on… Let’s get you home before Griselda wigs out.” Valkyrie stood. “I’ll walk you back, if you want.”
“I’d love that.” Flora grinned.
Valkyrie packed her bag, just enough for a weekend away. “So Crystal, you going home too?”
“Yeah… Someone has to go and make sure my brothers haven’t drove my parents crazy yet.” Crystal chuckled. “I know you’re going home.”
Valkyrie smiled, sitting down to pet Cheshire. “I kind of have to. It’s a family tradition. Spend the day with Mom and head off for dinner with Nana.”
“Ah, traditions.” Crystal gestured to Valkyrie’s arms. “Think you’ll be healed by then?”
“I highly doubt it. But hey… Nana’s lectures aren’t nearly as long-winded as Uncle Salvador’s or Mom’s.” Valkyrie laughed. Crystal shook her head.
“If you were more careful… you wouldn’t need all those lectures.”
Chapter 12: Chapter Twelve: Day of the Rose
- Day of the Rose
Valkyrie waited in the Cloud Tower lobby for Ms. Griffin to come down, her bag packed and ready for the weekend home.
She couldn’t help but smile as Zarathustra and Ediltrude walked by. “Tell Griselda I said hello, Professor Zarathustra.” She half-teased. The green haired witch gave a smile.
“I will. Behave while you’re home.”
“She’s Griffin’s daughter, you really think she’ll behave?” Ediltrude teased. Valkyrie chuckled.
“I think I do pretty well, thank you.” Valkyrie reminded them. Footsteps came up behind them.
“Ready to head for home?” Griffin asked. Valkyrie grabbed her bag, Cheshire sticking his head out.
“We’re ready.” She waved to Zarathustra and Ediltrude. “See you two after the weekend.”
Griffin waved. “Make sure Cloud Tower is locked down… We don’t need Professor Bittersmoke sleepwalking into trouble.” She turned to Valkyrie. “Let’s go.”
Valkyrie breathed in the Rancor air, enjoying the feel of home. “I think I was actually a little home sick.” Valkyrie said, leaning into her mother. Griffin chuckled, placing a hand on her daughter’s shoulder.
“Freshman year is always the hardest…” She looked down her daughter’s arms. “How are your lightning burns?”
“It’s getting better. I should be fully healed by Monday.” Valkyrie said. “So what do you want to do first, Mom? Our favorite bookstore? Lunch at Jinxes? Movie marathon?” Griffin couldn’t help but smile.
“How about we just start with unpacking at home? And then we’ll hit up our favorite haunts.” Griffin planned. Valkyrie grinned.
“It’s your day, your pick.”
Jinxes was the best place for specialty burgers and shakes. The atmosphere was incredibly dark and depressing and the place looked like a ghost town saloon. Perfect.
“Okay… So I picked my figure for my History of Dark Magic essay… I just hope you don’t get a big head about it.” Valkyrie teased, sipping her soda. Griffin shook her head.
“I thought the idea was to keep ourselves separate? Because we didn’t want anyone to think you got where you were because of your relationship to me?” Griffin asked. Valkyrie shrugged.
“I have a feeling most students know anyway… And after my fight with Stormy, no one should doubt my skills as a witch.” Griffin sighed.
“I know. You’ve become a strong young witch, and I’m proud of you.” Griffin smiled. “I just wish you wouldn’t pick fights with the older witches.”
“You mean, you wish I wouldn’t pick fights with my pseudo cousins? The ones who could attempt to kill me if they knew who I was?” Valkyrie smiled. “I get it. But I couldn’t let them keep picking on Mirta… She can’t help that she’s from a realm where fairies and witches are best friends… And… My cousin is a fairy… I don’t see anything wrong with fairies.”
“I’m well aware… Just like I’m aware of you spending time with your little… Fairy friend… The one who was in the pink dress when she helped break into Cloud Tower.” Griffin teased. Valkyrie flushed.
“Look, Flora is… She’s a friend.”
“And according to Morgan, you want more than just friendship with her…” Griffin smiled, placing a hand on her daughters. “I want you to be happy, Valkyrie. And if that little fairy from Alfea makes you happy… So be it.” Valkyrie groaned.
“Mom… She’s taller than I am.”
“She is from Linphea. They have Amazon blood.” Griffin recalled. Valkyrie gave a look.
“Mom… It’s okay. I know I’m short. I take after Great-Aunt Hetty.” She chuckled. “And… She thinks it’s cute.” Valkyrie flushed. “I just wish I wasn’t a coward when it came to feelings.”
Griffin chuckled. “You’re a lot like me… Feelings are like pulling teeth… But I could fight all day and be brave in a battle.” She looked at her daughter. “Just remember that if you’re brave enough to handle one of the descendants from the Ancestral Coven, you’re brave enough to handle asking a girl to be your girlfriend.”
Valkyrie smiled. “Yeah… You’re right… I can do this.” She looked at her mom. “Any chance we can stop by that one nursery? I was thinking… If she’s from a light realm, she doesn’t know much about dark realm plants… I could get her a sapling and maybe a book on the plants here…”
Griffin smiled. “That’s my girl… We’ll check before we leave for Magix.”
Theodora Sylvane’s home hadn’t changed much in the years after the war. There were changes to the photos on the wall, photos of her granddaughters and her children. Of Cheshire and Sasha. But that was about it.
“I do love the holidays. We’re all so busy now… I feel like I never get to see any of you.” Theodora smiled, ruffling Valkyrie’s short purple hair and mussing up Morgan’s longer blonde-brown locks.
“Sorry, Nana… Classes have been hectic.” Morgan explained.
“Yeah… And I’ve been in and out of trouble…” Valkyrie confessed. Salvador laughed.
“Yep… You’re my sister’s daughter all-right. Let me guess, you’re rebel rousing?” He chuckled. He’d grown out his purple hair, keeping it in a ponytail, his goatee now a beard. But he still wore that golden suit…
Palladium shook his head. “Now be kind, Salvador. Valkyrie tends to get into trouble for helping others.”
“So she’s a bleeding heart…? Griffie was too. Just on a grander scale. I mean, revolutions were started by her, Pall.” Salvador teased. Griffin rolled her eyes.
“She was trying to help the Princess of Solaria get back her ring that some of my senior students stole.” Griffin explained. Theodora narrowed her eyes.
“Let me guess, those same students we keep telling you are no good and should be sent away?” Theodora asked.
Griffin sighed. “Mother, if I don’t show Icy, Darcy, and Stormy that there could be a different way than their grandmothers’ way, then what does that say about how people will treat Valkyrie?”
“Don’t bring me in this! Those three don’t have a conscience, Mom. They tormented poor Mirta until she cried and they keep trying to go after the Dragon Fire.” Valkyrie explained. Her hands had come up to push back her short locks.
Theodora gasped, a familiar feeling of dread inside her. “What happened to your arms?”
Valkyrie bit her lip. “I fought with Stormy.” Salvador swore and looked at Griffin.
“That could have been bad, Griffin… She could have shown her true powers.” Salvador argued. Valkyrie and Morgan shook their heads, heading upstairs to the room they used to sleep over in.
“I hate when they talk like I’m not there…” Valkyrie growled. Morgan took her hand.
“I know, Cousin… But they’re just scared… They don’t want another war to break out.” Morgan squeezed her hand. “I mean… My dads still ward our home every time we’re there.”
“Mom still uses protection sigils…” Valkyrie groaned. “I just… I hate knowing who they are and not being able to fight back. I mean… Sure, there may be some good inside of them… But I’ve yet to sense it.”
Morgan shrugged. “Some people are just pure evil, Valkyrie… I mean, Aunt Griffin says the Ancestral Witches had tainted blood… That everyone who was part of the Inner Circle became mad with their power… Maybe it’s the same principle for the Trix?”
“Maybe…” Valkyrie sighed. “Maybe.”
Chapter 13: Chapter Thirteen: Spelled
“Come on dear, you can’t fight it forever.” A familiar voice droned on.
“That’s right. You’re ours. We killed you fair and square, we own you.” A different voice cackled.
“You’ll do right by us… Won’t you dear?” Valkyrie glowered.
“You three can go straight to hell!” She growled, running off in the direction the voices didn’t come from.
Hitting a wall, she groaned, falling to her feet. The voices began to laugh louder and louder, closer and closer.
She was soon surrounded by them, glowing yellow eyes and the smell of death piercing through her. “You will obey us, child.”
“You’ll join us, sooner or later. It’s your destiny.”
“You will destroy all in the magical dimension. You will release us from Oblivion.” They brought forth their crystals, creating the triangular trap.
Anger surged through her, her aura changing, eyes flashing red as the dragon coiled around her. “If I’m going to destroy anything or anyone, it’s going to be the three of you!” She yelled out. “Now get the hell away from me!” The dragon uncoiled, snapping and attacking the witches.
Valkyrie shot straight up, her lamp and the overhead lightbulbs busting. Crystal swore. “Easy there…” She rose from her bed, walking over to Valkyrie. “Another nightmare?” Valkyrie groaned, wiping the sweat from head.
“I… Yeah… Nightmare…” She swallowed, laying back down. “Something bad’s going to happen today… I can feel it.” Crystal frowned.
“Let’s just hope this ‘something bad’ waits until after our exam today… I can’t afford to fail this test…” Crystal made light of the situation. Valkyrie glowered.
“This is serious, Crys… When I say bad… I mean… Bad. Omega-level bad.” The purple-haired witch sighed. “Not that it matters… It’s not like it’ll come to pass…” Crystal waved her hands, fixing the bulbs.
“That’s right… Visions don’t always come true. Especially not when nightmares are the source.” She went back to her side of the room. “Now try and go back to sleep. It’s three in the morning and I refuse to get up until my alarm sounds.”
“Are you okay? You’ve been a mess all day… Even the teachers are worried.” Crystal asked. They were at the Hex Café, trying to relax. Exams and tests were getting more intense and the witches needed an outlet…
Even if that outlet was close to the Trix coven and some of their groupies. “I’m fine. Just… I guess I’m still shaken from that dream.”
Crystal was about to respond when the café doors swung open. “Icy and Stormy have one of those Alfea girls on the run! Come on!” Liss yelled. Valkyrie glowered, her anger surging.
“Valkyrie… Please tell me you’re not planning on getting involved…” Crystal warned. Valkyrie flashed her crooked half-smile.
“Fine… I won’t tell you. But if you want to help, let’s get going.” She grabbed her bag, rushing off after the Trix.
It took some doing, but they had caught up to Icy and Stormy. Valkyrie glared, recognizing the fairy they were harassing was Flora’s friend Musa. “We’re going to make you pay, Pixie.” Icy cackled.
“No you won’t.” Valkyrie walked in between the two, crossing her arms and glaring at Icy. “You’ll leave her alone, or I’ll burn you like I did your little sister there.” She threatened.
Icy growled. “Are you seriously threatening me right now, Freshman?” Valkyrie smirked.
“I am. And I’m not the only one. Am I?” She looked at the other witches gathered there. “Are you really going to let these two dictate what you do for the rest of your lives? So they’re cool in high school, but what prospects do they really have? Have you ever heard them speak of the future?”
“Or about anyone else other than themselves? Do you really want to be lackeys to a group of witches who don’t even do their own assignments?” She asked. “Do you want to follow the fate of the Ancestral Coven?” That hit a mark.
The Linphean triplets: Gerbera, Euphorbia, and Ververine stood beside Valkyrie in front of Musa. Yakobetta, Shilly, Tabitha, Vera, and Lunilla also came to her side. Crystal walked over to Valkyrie, sighing a bit. “You’re batshit, you know that?” She hissed at her friend. Valkyrie winked.
Icy glowered, glancing to the few remaining witches on hers and Stormy’s side. “Guess not everyone is a traitor.” Valkyrie snickered.
“More like, not everyone is very bright.” Valkyrie taunted. A loud banging noise made all the witches look.
A Red Fountain ship landed behind them, three specialists and a few familiar fairy faces coming out. “Musa, are you okay?!” Bloom asked.
Musa grinned. “Yeah, Valkyrie and her crew came by just in time.” She rushed to her friends.
Of course, the moment didn’t last. “This. Is. So. Infuriating.” Icy fumed, snow beginning to fall heavily. Stormy glowered.
“It really is.” Storm clouds gathered. Valkyrie swore as Icy’s more loyal followers began to power up.
“Ladies and gents, I do believe we have a fight on our hands.” Valkyrie called. Her witch friends nodded, and the fairies began to transform as the heroes grabbed their weapons.
Blasts were thrown. Witch on witch. Fairy on witch. And hero on witch. (Though once Riven came into the fray with Darcy, he and Brandon started having their own spat.)
Exhaustion was starting to set in after the fight and Valkyrie could feel her anger rising when she saw how Darcy was doing Musa and how Icy was doing Tecna and her little specialist friend. The last straw, however, was when she heard Bloom yell out for Flora.
Valkyrie looked up, noticing the storm witch knocking Flora into a building. She didn’t think about it, rushing to the air and toward the balcony where Flora went down. “You okay?” She asked. Flora gave a weak smile.
“I’m fine… Help the others.” Valkyrie stayed put. “Valkyrie… Go… I promise, I’ll be okay.” Valkyrie growled.
“Fine… But you better be okay.” She stood, glowering at Stormy. “I take it this means you want round two?” She growled, pulling from the negative energy in the atmosphere.
A true force of dark magic blast Stormy back, making her hit the building nearby. Valkyrie smirked, heading back for the ground to help Crystal keep Liss and Lucrezia back. But that wasn’t the end of it.
She could hear Icy taunting Bloom… And then she felt it. ‘Join with her.’ Her dragon thought. She couldn’t stop herself, her power consuming her and attacking the witches on the ground force while a bright light attacked and took on the Trix coven.
The opposing witches turned and ran once they got on their feet, and Valkyrie… Valkyrie fell to hers. “That was incredible!” Ververine called out.
“Yeah, where did you find that much negativity?” Tabitha cheered. Crystal helped her up.
“Look, she said at the beginning of the year that she was more powerful than she looked.” Crystal covered for her while she got to her feet.
“Look, I just got really angry okay? I have a thing about picking on fairies for no reason.” Valkyrie shrugged. “My cousin is a fairy and if I found out that someone other than me was messing with her, I’d have to get mean.” She covered.
“Understandable.” Gerbera nodded. “My sisters and I are like that with each other.” She grinned. Footsteps approached and Valkyrie turned.
Musa gave a shy smile. “Hey, Val… I just wanted to say you’re pretty cool for a witch. Thanks for sticking up for me back there.” Valkyrie shrugged.
“Don’t mention it. Who knows, maybe I’ll need you for a concert someday.” She played it off.
“That could always be arranged.” Stella chimed in. “But what I want to know is when you and Bloom became synchronized.”
“Yeah… How are you two so powerful?” Brandon asked. (Or was he Sky? Valkyrie could never be sure… Kota tried to help her learn, just in case.)
The redhead in question just gave a nervous laugh. “I have no idea. Does it have something to do with us being counterparts?” Valkyrie paused.
“It could…. But… I mean… There’s no proof we’re counterparts. Not definitively.” She tried to cover.
Tecna hummed. “I’m sure there are some tests we could run…” Flora placed a hand on her friend’s shoulder.
“What my friends are getting at is, it was great to see you Valkyrie. And we’re thankful to you and the rest of you.” She lit up at the Linphean triplets. “I’m glad to see you three are doing well.”
“Yeah… But we should be getting back to CT… I mean… Ms. Griffin’s gonna flip when she hears about this.” Euphorbia sighed. “And it’s not going to be pretty.” Valkyrie groaned.
“Here I come Dungeon monsters…”
“Great… We started a coup and now we’re going to be expelled.” Crystal sighed. “Come on, girls… It’s going to be a rough night.”
“She wouldn’t really expel you for this… Would she?” Bloom asked. “I mean, you’re her own daughter.” Valkyrie swore.
“Bloom…” She growled. The other witches, aside from Crystal, gave shocked looks to Valkyrie. (And so did the three remaining specialists.)
“You’re Ms. Griffin’s daughter? Like… I heard the rumor, but it’s true?” Vera asked. Valkyrie sighed, defeated. Bloom flushed.
“I’m sorry.” Valkyrie shook her head.
“Don’t.” She turned to the other witches. “Come on… It’s a long story and I’ll tell you on the way to Cloud Tower…”
The group of witches from Magix were all piled into Ms. Griffin’s office, divided by which side they had picked. (Aside from Lucy, who stayed near the middle. The poor girl wasn’t sure who to follow.)
“You caused a major disruption in Magix, turned against each other, and even involved specialists and fairies?” Griffin asked. “What happened?”
Icy glowered and turned to Valkyrie, pointing an accusing finger at her. “That little freshman punk tried to get in our way. We were within our rights to punish that little pixie from Melody for entering our turf, and she tried to deny us.”
“Yeah, she even got the rest of these losers to follow her.” Darcy pointed out. Valkyrie snorted.
“Losers, huh? Then what does that make you three and your band, considering you’re the ones who ran away after you got beat.” Valkyrie recounted.
Stormy glowered. “How were we supposed to know that the earth fairy had such power?!” Stormy yelled.
“Simple, you should have stayed away from her.” Crystal snarled. Valkyrie looked to her best friend, impressed with her bite. Griffin glared between the groups.
“I don’t even know what to do in this moment. I’m angry and disappointed in both groups. Though there is a bit of pride. It’s good to know when to retreat.” She told Icy and her group. “And you did fine by running the fairies away from Cloud Tower turf. But after you got her away, you should have stayed back. Fairies travel in packs.” She then turned to Valkyrie’s group.
“And you bunch… I’m proud that you didn’t join in just for the sake of following the flock. I’m proud you stood your ground. However, challenging your fellow witches in the public eye isn’t a great move. It shows division in our ranks, and we should not show division.” She took a breath.
“That being said… I’m going to allow this to slide. This once. But if I catch any of you starting up again in Magix, I’ll remove your links to your powers and watch you fail midterms.” She snarled at them. “Dismissed.”
The witches began to file out when Valkyrie was pulled back. Icy. “Don’t think you got away with anything, Freshman. We know what you are.”
“And who you are.” Darcy added.
“Mess with us again, and we’ll take you out.” Stormy growled. The three of them stalked off, leaving Valkyrie alone. The purple-haired witch scowled.
“What do you think they meant by that?” Crystal asked, placing a hand on her friend’s shoulder.
“I don’t know… But I’ll find out if they keep up their Minotaur shit.” Valkyrie growled. “I won’t let them get away with trying to mess with others. Not again.” Crystal frowned.
“Again? That you talking or the dragon?”
Chapter 14: Chapter Fourteen: How To Cause A Scene
- How To Cause a Scene
Valkyrie couldn’t help but laugh. “You’re actually worried, Morgan? Come on, you know this midterm forward and backward. You’ve seen your Papa work it a thousand times.” Morgan glared.
“Maybe so, but being inside is a totally different experience than just watching it.” The half-elf scoffed, taking a sip of her strawberry shake.
Valkyrie shrugged. “Maybe so… But I believe in you… You’re half-elf. You’re a fairy. And you’re a Sylvane. You’ve got this.” Valkyrie encouraged. Morgan snorted.
“What about you and your midterms? Aren’t you worried?” She asked. Valkyrie sighed.
“Not exactly… I mean… I am, but it’s not like I’m doing Magical Reality or anything… I’m just… facing off against a shapeshifter and whatever monster it decides to be.” Valkyrie swallowed.
“Valkyrie! You’re okay!” Valkyrie immediately smiled, turning to face the owner of the voice. Flora. Morgan tilted her head.
“Of course she’s okay… Why wouldn’t she be?” Morgan asked. Flora put her hand to mouth.
“You… Haven’t told her… About the other day?” Flora asked. Morgan glared.
“Cousin… What did you do?” Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“I put those three seniors in their place and the Headmistress was a little upset with me.” She looked to Flora. “But we all managed to get off without a punishment.” She smiled. “I’m fine.” Morgan groaned.
“Seriously, Val? Are you trying to make Aunt Griffin expel you?” She asked. “I mean… Why did you even challenge seniors? Was it intentional or were you being impulsive?” Her amber eyes flashed.
Valkyrie crossed her arms. “I was doing what had to be done.” She looked to Flora. “Join us, please. You can complain about midterms with us.” Valkyrie tried to change the subject. “I’ll even treat.”
Morgan sighed. “You’ll be dining alone then… I’ve got to go and prepare for mine.” She managed to shoot Flora a smile. “Good luck, Flora. And don’t let my cousin worry you.” She winked, heading out.
Flora took a chair, sitting with Valkyrie. “I hate that she left. I enjoy seeing you two act up.” She teased. Valkyrie chuckled.
“Yeah… We’re something.” She waved at one of the waitresses so Flora could order. “My offer still stands by the way, it’s on me.”
“That’s generous… But you don’t have to.” Flora smiled, looking to the waitress. “I’ll just have a cherry shake, please.” The waitress nodded, heading inside. “So what sort of midterm are you looking at? I don’t know how they do things at Cloud Tower…”
“Shapeshifter turning into some monster… The monster is based on your power level… During orientation, it turned into one of the ice snakes from the Omega Dimension.” Valkyrie sighed. “I think it was taunting me…”
“Because of your dad…?” Flora asked, soft and near quiet. Valkyrie leaned back.
“Yeah… Because of him…” She shook her head. “What about you? I mean… Aren’t you in Palladium’s class too?” Flora groaned.
“Don’t remind me… I’m so nervous about the magical reality chamber… I know it’s safe… in theory… but… It’s going to pick a dead planet and we have to figure out how survive… But we don’t know which planet so we don’t know how to best prepare.” Flora rambled. “I’m so worried…”
Valkyrie took her hand. “Hey, relax. You’re a fairy from Linphea, and from what I know about Linphea, your people are survivors. You can conjure plants from any realm and are so intuitive as to which plants are poisonous or edible. If anyone can pass this test, it’s you.” Valkyrie smiled. “I have faith.”
Flora grinned. “Thanks… I hope you’re right.” Valkyrie gave a wink.
“I’m seldom wrong, Flora… Ask anyone. Except maybe my cousin.” Valkyrie laughed. Flora giggled, but then got serious.
“I didn’t know you didn’t tell Morgan… Or I wouldn’t have said anything.” She looked down. “I’m sorry.” Valkyrie shook her head.
“Don’t worry about it. She’ll be pissed and then she’ll prank me and be over it.” She shrugged. “And tell Bloom I’m not upset that she blurted out to Cloud Tower that I’m the headmistress’ daughter. They’ve seen how I fight and know I didn’t need my mother’s help getting in, so it’s no big deal.” Flora smiled.
“I’ll tell her… When she gets back from her date with Brandon.” Flora faked swoon. Valkyrie laughed.
“He’s the blonde one… Right?”
“Mmmhmmm. And they’re sooo in love.” Flora teased. Valkyrie smirked.
“You know, with sarcasm like that, you could be a witch.”
“My paternal grandmother is one… So I guess it could’ve happened.” Flora winked. “But the wings sort of stopped that.” Valkyrie smiled.
“Hey, I like the wings. They suit you.”
“We should be studying… Not watching some lame movie.” Lucy grumbled. Valkyrie shot her a look.
“Fine, you can go back to your room then.” She was still sore about what happened in Magix… but she was trying to give Lucy a chance, for Mirta’s sake.
Lucy crossed her arms. “I think I will.” She stood, storming out. Mirta sighed, leaning back on the floor. Cheshire seemed to sense the discord and began to rub around the redhead, purring as she pet him.
“I’m sorry she’s being so rude… I don’t know what’s gotten into her lately.” Mirta looked down. “I mean… It’s like she’s trying to be just like Icy, Darcy, and Stormy.”
“Some role models to have.” Crystal snarked, running her fingers through Patches’ fur. “Those three keep losing to fairies, freshmen fairies at that.”
“Hey… It’s her choice to make.” Valkyrie looked at Mirta. “And I hate to say this, but if she ever gets between me and those three, I will hurt her.” Mirta bit her lip.
“I get that… She’s… She’s changing… And not in a good way.”
“Just hope she sees them for what they really are. Otherwise, she may end up a coven lackey.” Crystal stretched. “Now… Someone pass the popcorn and let’s get back into the movie. This topic is more depressing than I need right now.”
Valkyrie handed her the half-empty bowl. “Seriously, Val? Where do you even put it all?” Crystal swore. The purple-haired witch chuckled.
“I stress eat, okay…?”
It was supposed to be a simple midterm. Fight the monster, go back to your seat on the bleachers for evaluation.
But the creature Valkyrie was facing wasn’t having it. It was a storm harpy (probably a joke the universe was playing considering her last fights with Stormy).
The harpy was lightning fast and creating enough twisters that Valkyrie could barely catch her breath, let alone get her inner fire to start.
Frustration kicked in, power spilling from her a creating little sparks of fire that attacked the heels of the harpy, making it cry out.
Valkyrie summoned her power, feeling the darkness swell inside her, felt the fires igniting around her. She couldn’t stop herself, frustration becoming anger and… ‘She lives. She’s so, so angry… She’s finding herself.’ Her dragon kept saying on repeat.
Valkyrie growled out, her powers surging against the harpy. There was an explosion of feathers and lightning, the kickback making the witch hit the barrier, hard. She groaned, steam and blood coming from her. “Excellent work… But you may wish to see the nurse after that explosion of power.” Professor Gilda instructed.
The younger witch got to her feet, giving a bit of a smile. “Sure… But first… Did I pass?” She asked. (She couldn’t help it, she had to know.)
“You passed with flying colors, my dear. But I’m deadly serious about the nurse… You look like you’re going to pass out.” Gilda looked to Crystal, summoning her up. “You’ve already had your exam, make sure she gets to the nurse.”
Crystal gave a nod, taking Valkyrie by the arm, being careful of where the storm harpy had cut her. “Come on… We can’t have you bleeding on the hardwood.” She teased.
Valkyrie gave a weak smile, letting Crystal lead her on. “Right… Hey… Is it normal to feel this light headed after the exam?”
“No… But it is for blood loss… And power loss… You really need to tone yourself down before you attract unwanted attention.” Crystal warned. Valkyrie hummed.
“I know… But it’s so hard… And he’s sooo mad.” Valkyrie pouted. “I can’t stop him.” Crystal sighed.
“Don’t worry about it now… Let’s get you fixed up first…”
Griffin had the soundproof spell cast before Valkyrie was even in the room good. “I heard about your exam… You need to-”
“Keep a low profile. I know. But I wasn’t the one driving that power, Mom.” Valkyrie swallowed. “It happened in Magix too…. But only after Bloom started up… I’m telling you, she’s the heir to Domino. There’s no way she couldn’t be.” Valkyrie began to ramble.
“I mean… It makes sense. She’s about the same age the Bloom from Domino would have been. She’s redheaded, just like you say Marion was. She has the blue eyes of the royals of Domino. And… Every time my dragon acts up, she’s right there!” Valkyrie all but yelled.
“And it can’t be a coincidence. Coincidences don’t just happen to me.” She shook her head. “I mean… Come on, even my nightmares are starting back up.” Griffin paused.
“You may… Be right.” Griffin admitted. Valkyrie looked at her mother.
“You believe me?”
“I’ve always believed you, Valkyrie… but I needed evidence… And as it’s turning out… There’s more than enough… Even Faragonda has been contacting me about the strange happenings around Bloom that occur on campus.” Griffin put her fingertips together.
“In fact, today Bloom overloaded their magical reality simulator with her impressive power. And the simulator’s choice of planet? Domino.” Valkyrie slumped down in the chair in front of her mother’s desk.
“What should I do?”
“Nothing… I know it seems cruel to leave her in the dark… But a woman, fairy, witch, or otherwise, needs to figure certain things out on her own… Otherwise she won’t believe it.” Valkyrie looked down.
“You’re talking from experience, aren’t you? About how people warned you about my father?” Valkyrie didn’t even know his name… Just what they shared: a power, a birthmark, and blue eyes.
Griffin sighed. “I was warned, but I had to face it myself before I truly believed… And didn’t your girlfriend even admit that Bloom didn’t believe she was a fairy until recently?” Valkyrie flushed.
“Flora’s not my girlfriend.” She defended. “But yeah… She did say that.” Valkyrie groaned. “So… if she does figure it out, then what should I do?”
“Try to work with her… Your powers come from similar sources, you’re each other’s counterpart. You can teach her what you know about your powers and it’ll help her with her own. And vice versa.” Valkyrie gave a nod, standing up.
“Okay. If you say so.” She took a breath. “I’m going to head to bed… I’m still feeling dizzy.”
“Sleep well, Val… And try not to worry about this Bloom matter…” Griffin gave a smirk. “Worry more about your would-be girlfriend.” Valkyrie shot her mother a look before walking out of her office.
Chapter 15: Chapter Fifteen: Saving the Undines
- Saving the Undines
Valkyrie was relaxing in hers and Crystal’s room, giving Cheshire a good brushing. She’d finished her exams for the day and was trying to calm herself down. Tests always seemed to frazzle her, even if she was usually prepared.
Her phone began to ring, a certain special tone. She grinned, answering. “Hello, Flora… How are classes?” She asked.
“Um… They’re good… I…” She sounded like she’d been crying. “I… Just had a fight with Stella and Tecna and I’m trying to work on this potion but I’m going to have to finish it in Black Mud Swamp… Would… You help me out?”
Valkyrie felt her anger surge a bit against Stella and Tecna. How dare they make her Flora cry? But it dissipated quickly enough. “Sure thing. I’m done with exams for the day… Just keep your location on and I’ll be there soon.”
“Thank you, so much.” Flora hung up. Valkyrie grabbed her bag, giving Cheshire a little pet.
“Sorry buddy…. But I’ve never been one to turn down a fairy…” She gave a wink. “See you soon.”
Flora had already set up her tent and had a place for a small campfire. Valkyrie gave a smile. “Nice place you’ve got set up.”
Flora grinned, rushing over to hug Valkyrie. “Thanks. And thank you for being here… I’m going to need all the help I can get.”
“Then I suppose it’s a good thing we turned up…?” A formal voice spoke. Flora and Valkyrie turned, seeing a sheepish looking Tecna and Stella, and a smug looking Bloom and Musa.
“Oh you came… You’re really the best friends a girl could have.” Flora grinned. Bloom smiled.
“Hey, we’re the Winx Club… We don’t just leave our friends in trouble.” Bloom looked over to the blonde and violet haired fairies. “Right, girls?”
“That’s right. We’d never abandon you.” Stella gave a nervous laugh.
“Even if your plants did eat our homework.” Tecna gave a smile. Musa waved at Valkyrie.
“I see you’re here to help too. That’s pretty cool. For a witch.” Musa chuckled. Valkyrie gave a little shrug.
“What can I say? I never pass up an opportunity to…” She realized where she’d have to go with this. “I always help my friends.” Valkyrie gave a smile. ‘Nice save.’
Bloom gave her a knowing look. “Right. Friends.” She looked to Flora. “So what is it you need for your potion anyway?”
Flora grabbed her bag from the tent, pulling out a large book. “I need the Cheerful Gladiolus… Unfortunately, there’s only one left and it’s in the care of the Undines…”
“Are you saying we’re going to be stealing from nymphs? I mean… I’m down for mischief and a little mayhem… But I don’t think it’s a good look for you fairies.” Valkyrie said, sitting down on a fallen long.
Flora chuckled. “Oh no… We’re not going to just take the flower… That’d be beyond wrong.”
“Well you can’t just ask for it… Can you?” Stella asked. Flora stood, pulling out a jar.
“This is a cloning potion… If the nymphs will allow me, I can create more Cheerful Gladiolus, so they won’t be endangered anymore.” Flora grinned. “We just need to find them.”
“And that could take a while because they’re so small, right?” Musa asked. She turned to Valkyrie. “Hey, I bet if we shrunk you a few inches, they’d accept you right in.” Musa teased, chuckling. Valkyrie snorted.
“Keep talking, Pigtails. Black Mud Swamp is prime with monstrous beings, and most require a witch’s touch to tame.” Valkyrie half-threatened.
Tecna pulled out her data base. “There’s… Merit to that… Interesting… Is that a course at Cloud Tower? Monster Taming?” Valkyrie gave a slight smile.
“Sophomores and up take the classes… But I’m on good terms with the Dungeon Monsters, so how difficult could swamp creatures be?” She pushed her glasses up. “I mean, there shouldn’t be much difference in them.”
“Can we stop just standing around and talking? The sooner we find those nymphs, the sooner we can go back to civilization.” Stella looked to Valkyrie. “And I guess Cloud Tower for you.” Valkyrie gave a glare.
“Watch it, Princess…” She warned. ‘Solarians are always so prideful…’ Her dragon growled.
Stella and Musa were arguing about the mud and swamp water. Valkyrie was about to say something, but Flora beat her to it. “Girls! Behave. We don’t want to frighten the nymphs.” Flora reminded them, gesturing to an oasis like area.
All six girls got to their knees, peering over the cat-o-nines. Small mermaid-like creatures swam around the water. “Oh they’re so cute.” Bloom cooed.
“They remind me of little mermaids.” Stella grinned.
“Oh they’re so much more than that, Stella. The undines help keep Black Mud Swamp in top condition.” Flora explained.
“Thank you saying that, Alfea fairy.” One of the nymphs finally spoke, coming up to the top. “Are you girls here to help with the butterfly jamboree? Or perhaps you wish to volunteer to help with the poliwag playground?”
“Actually, we’re here about the Cheerful Gladiolus…. If you don’t mind…” Flora asked. “I mean, I have a potion that will keep it from becoming endangered.”
The nymph paused to think. “You’ll need to speak with Queen Algae… She makes the final decisions regarding such… Matters. Just follow me.” She ducked to the water, gesturing for them to follow her up stream.
The girls walked up until they came up to a small looking throne. A goldenish nymph sat at the throne. “Young fairies, and young witch, what brings you here?” Queen Algae asked.
Valkyrie took a breath. “We wanted to see if you would let our friend borrow your Cheerful Gladiolus plant… She has a potion that’ll copy it and-”
Queen Algae put her hand up. “I would love to allow you to use the flower… But only if you do something for us in return…” She looked down. “Don’t find me callous, please, but we’re having a bit of a problem…”
“There’s a creature here in the swamp that has been preventing us from getting to our food source. If we can’t get our food, we’ll wither away.” One of the other nymphs whimpered.
“Don’t worry, we’ll help you out. Right girls?” Bloom asked.
“Yeah, we will! No one is running you guys out of your home.” Musa grinned. Valkyrie took a breath.
“I’m in. Might as well get a head start on my monster-taming.” Valkyrie grinned.
“And we’re in too!” Tecna and Stella grinned. Valkyrie kept her distance as the fairies shifted into their winx forms.
Stella’s hair split into two long ponytails and her outfit became a bright and glistening orange color. Blue tipped wings sprouting from her back.
Tecna was in a purple and blue jumper suit, her wings more like a hang-glider. Musa was in a red shirt and skirt, a little pink midriff covering her stomach. Little blue wings sprouting from her back.
Bloom had a crown, her red hair still long and flowing. A blue halter top and skirt covered her body. Her wings looking similar a dragonfly’s.
And Flora… Her hair was long, her bodice and skirt pink. Her wings looked like green petals. Beautiful.
“So you divas ready to go?” Valkyrie couldn’t help but tease. Bloom chuckled.
“Just try and keep up with us.” Bloom laughed, taking to the sky. The other fairies flew after her but Flora wanted to wait up for her.
Valkyrie levitated herself, flying after the fairies. “So where are we going again?” She asked, keeping up with Flora and Tecna.
“Their food source is the Xilith leaf, and they’re supposed to be on that island.” Tecna gestured to an island ahead of them. “I suggest we go there.”
“After you, Tecna.” Bloom let her friend lead. Stella flew to the front.
“Wait… The Undines said this thing was huge… Right…? What if they meant huge for them and to us it’ll be really tiny…?” The blonde gave a nervous laugh. “Right…? It’s possible… Right?”
“I mean… Anything’s possible…” Musa shrugged. Valkyrie froze, noticing the shadow coming toward the water’s surface.
“Musa watch out!” Valkyrie called out.
Flora and Stella rushed to Musa, grabbing her arms and flying her away before the creature lunged out of the water. “What is that?!” Stella screamed.
“I don’t know… But we’re going to have to be careful!” Tecna flew higher. “Everyone, it can only get so high up…”
“To the air!” Bloom called. Valkyrie and the others flew up higher, getting closer to Tecna. The creature seemed to growl and hiss, but made no lunges for them.
“So how are we supposed to get to the island?” Musa asked. Valkyrie closed her eyes, trying to think.
“Just go above it and land… its neck wasn’t that long…” Valkyrie decided to lead by example, starting her descent.
“Now what should do…? I mean… The monster was huge… How… Do we beat that…?” Stella asked, starting to yawn.
Tecna frowned, looking over the island. “Something’s not right here…”
“No birds…. It’s so quiet…. Kind of peaceful.” Musa yawned, getting to the ground.
“Yeah… I… I’ve never been so tired….” Flora murmured, laying on a patch of grass. Valkyrie felt a wave of exhaustion hit.
“I feel like I’ve went three rounds with an ice snake…” She yawned, lying beside Flora. “This grass is so comfy…”
Tecna started to shout, some sort of warning… But Valkyrie couldn’t be bothered to move or care. Sleep was what was important… Only sleep….
She felt groggy as a gentle hand took hers, pulling a bit. “Come on, Sleepyhead, the gas is wearing off.” Flora spoke, way to cheery for someone who had just woke up.
Valkyrie groaned, raising up. “What happened?”
“That willow is a parasite and was giving off narcolepsy gas. It’s a wonder we weren’t eaten.” Tecna crossed her arms.
“How do we beat a tree?” Stella asked.
“On my realm, we burn them. But that’s just my realm.” Musa shrugged.
“It won’t work on a Red Willow… They’re fire proof…” Flora gave a smile. “But… We could burn it from the inside out. Bloom, Valkyrie, I’m going to need your help.”
Valkyrie and Bloom gave a nod, walking after Flora and following her instructions. They sent a small burst of fire toward the roots and Flora cast her spell, making the creature burn from the inside out.
It burst, and the rest of the island began to wake up. A little nymph flew up, having awoken. “Thank you, girls… You stopped the Red Willow.”
“So was that the scary monster your friends told us about?” Musa asked. The undine chuckled.
“Actually… The monster is giant turtle we’re all standing on…” The girls all felt panic. “But don’t worry… She’s usually a gentle creature. It was the Red Willow that was fouling up her mood.” She looked down. “And it took all but one of the Xilith leaves…”
Flora gave a small smile. “Don’t worry, little one, I have a wonderful idea… But we’ll need to take the leaf back to your queen.” The undine tilted her head.
“If… You say so…”
Flora was dancing around her makeshift campsite, and Valkyrie couldn’t help but grin at her giddiness. “I can’t believe that worked. Now I can create that… Witch repellent spell.” Flora looked to Valkyrie. “Though it only works on certain witches. We can modify the spell to lock onto Icy, Darcy, and Stormy.”
“I’m just glad you got what you wanted. And that your friends are still your friends.” Valkyrie looked to Stella and Tecna. “After all, Flora, most of us would be lost without you.”
“She’s right… You did help me study for potionology…” Stella gave a slight smile. “And you really helped me with my texts to Sky…”
“And I’ve never learned so much about the natural world before…” Tecna agreed. “And it’s all thanks to Flora.” Flora smiled, hugging the two fairies.
“I’m glad we made it through that adventure.” She paused. “Though that does mean we’re another day closer to having to restart our exams…” She sighed.
“Can’t win them all.” Musa laughed. Valkyrie grinned.
“No you can’t.” Valkyrie walked over to Flora. “Let me know when you girls have made it back to Alfea in one piece… I’ve got to get back to CT before the headmistress realizes I’m not in my room…”
Valkyrie collapsed on her bed, freshly showered to remove the smell of swamp. She still felt exhausted from the Red Willow, and her bed felt absolutely amazing. Her phone dinged, a text.
She glared at the device, but rose up to answer. Flora. She smiled at the message. A thank you for being there for Flora and a little picture of the Cheerful Gladiolus in Flora’s room to let her know they’d made it safely.
She set her phone and glasses down, wincing a bit as Cheshire jumped right on her stomach. “Easy there, Ches…” She hissed, reaching down to pet his fur. “I’ve been through the swamp today and I’m sore.”
“Yes it was worth it.” Valkyrie huffed. “It’s always worth it to…” She sighed. “To help Flora…” She groaned. “One of these days… I’m going to just tell her… One day.” The cat made a chuffing noise. “I will so.” She glared at the black and white blob of fur. “Brat.” She rolled over. “Just for that, I’m not petting you anymore tonight.”
Chapter 16: Chapter Sixteen: Losing Lucy
- Losing Lucy
Valkyrie chewed on her pen, looking her study guide over. Professor Tanae’s creaturology exam was coming up and she needed to know about the different monsters she could encounter. Cheshire rubbed against her legs, giving a soft purr.
“Fine. Fine. I’ll take a fifteen minute break and give you attention.” She sighed, setting her things down and pulling out a feather string. The tuxedo cat had a wonderful time chasing after it as Valkyrie twirled it around and around.
Bang, bang, bang. Valkyrie frowned, snapping her fingers to open her dorm room door. “Enter.” Mirta rushed in, taking Valkyrie’s hand.
“You’ve got to help Lucy! She… She’s made a deal with the Trix and something isn’t right… I can just feel it. It’s like… She’s a whole other person.” Mirta spoke so fast.
“Mirta, calm down and tell me that again, slowly.” Valkyrie stood. “What’s going on with Lucy?”
Mirta took a breath, trying to calm herself down. “She’s entering herself into the Miss Magix beauty pageant. Which I mean, is all well and good, but we all know how biased Magix can be when it comes to witches.” Valkyrie groaned.
“Oh, I’m aware of the bias… But if Lucy wants to compete… We can’t stop her.” Valkyrie crossed her arms. “But that’s not why you’re here, is it?”
Mirta shook her head, falling to the floor. Cheshire went over to her, rubbing against her. The redhead carefully stroked the cat, looking away. “She went to Icy and her sisters for help… And I just know that something like that will back fire…” She looked up to Valkyrie. “She won’t listen to me, but she might listen to someone who stood up to those witches.”
Valkyrie sighed, suddenly wished Crystal hadn’t had a date with Kota. She could’ve used the advice. “I’ll talk to Lucy, but I can’t promise anything… She’s her own witch.” Valkyrie stretched. “She in your room?”
“No…” Mirta shook her head. “She stormed out when I confronted her… She may have went to the library…” She stood. “Do you want me to come with you?”
“No way. She’s already mad at you. If I bring you along, she’ll be even less likely to listen to me.” Valkyrie grabbed her bag. “I’ll go see if I can find her on campus.” She took Mirta’s hand. “Go back to your room and get back to packing for Yule. Worrying will get you nowhere.”
Mirta gave a slow nod. “Okay…” She started for the door. “Thank you, Valkyrie… This means a lot to me.”
Valkyrie sighed. “Don’t thank me yet… Lucy may not even listen to me…” She gave one last chin scratch to Cheshire before she walked out of her room. “And Mirta… Stay the hell away from those witches… They’re nothing but trouble.” Mirta nodded.
Lucy was in the library, studying up on the different realms of the universe. “Do we have a magical geography test I didn’t know about?” Valkyrie asked, trying to stay casual as she sat beside the taller witch.
“I’m just being prepared… You never know when these teachers will want to give a pop quiz.” Lucy answered, a lie if her mouth twitch was anything to go by. “What are you studying for?” She gestured to Valkyrie’s bag.
The purple-haired witch pulled out her notebook and creaturology textbook. “My last exam before we leave for Yule. Exciting huh?” She gave a grin. “Or… Do your folks celebrate? I keep forgetting who’s religious and who just enjoys the holiday.”
Lucy shrugged. “Some of my family is religious… But honestly, my dad and I are just in it for the holiday. Food, family, the music. It’s what we’re in to.” Valkyrie gave a smile.
“Same here… Though my grandmother is religious, the rest of us just enjoy each other’s company.” She opened her notes back up. “I may even have a few friends over… Crystal and I have been practically inseparable since elementary school.” Good segway… Now for the dive.
“Hey… Haven’t you and Mirta been friends for a while…? I ask because you guys haven’t exactly been on good terms lately… Or it seems that way.” Valkyrie started. Lucy snorted.
“She’s just upset because I’m going to become popular by being friends with Icy, Darcy, and Stormy.” The green-haired witch grinned. “They’re even gonna help me out tonight.” Valkyrie paused, looking away. “What, you don’t approve? Well that’s not your call, is it Mini Mistress?” Valkyrie gave Lucy a look.
“Mini Mistress?” Lucy flushed a bit.
“What? Your mom’s the headmistress… And… I don’t have to explain myself to you.” Lucy glared. Valkyrie held her hands up.
“No. You don’t… But I’d like for you to hear me out. That’s all I’m asking. Will you do that?” Valkyrie asked. Lucy paused.
“Fine. Talk.” She relaxed a bit. “But you can’t make me do anything.”
“I know. I’m not trying to. I just want you to understand more about who you’re dealing with.” Valkyrie stood up. “Mirta and you have been close since you were kids, right?”
“My point is, Mirta’s been there for you when you probably didn’t even want to be there for yourself. At least, that’s how it’s been for me and Crystal. Mirta is a true friend. Icy and her sisters? They’ll dump you as soon as you’re not useful to them anymore…” She grabbed her bag. “Think about it, Lucy. What’s it costing you for them to help with your contest?” Lucy looked away.
“I…. Have to do their homework…” Valkyrie shook her head.
“Tell me, does that sound like a true friend to you? Because I sure wouldn’t ask Crystal to do mine… And I know Mirta would never ask you to do hers.” She started to leave. “Think about it, Lucy… Just think about it.”
Valkyrie waited at the bus stop, bags packed and Cheshire in her lap. She couldn’t help but feel a bit down, despite the holiday season. She’d found out from Mirta that Lucy had went through with Icy, Darcy, and Stormy’s idea, and it sickened her.
Witches taking advantage of each other was never a good thing. It wasn’t right, a poor remnant from the time the Ancestral Witches were around. And it took all Valkyrie had not to march back to Cloud Tower and take on those three herself.
“Mind if I wait with you?” A familiar voice asked. Valkyrie couldn’t help but smile, looking away from the window.
“Wait away, Flora.” She sat up a bit more. “Going home for the holidays?” She asked. Flora nodded.
“Yeah… I actually got lucky and managed to get my family something.” The fairy grinned. “I just hope they like it.” Valkyrie placed a hand on hers.
“If it’s from you, Flora, they’ll love it.” She frowned a bit, noticing a bruise on Flora’s arm. “What happened?”
Flora checked where Valkyrie had gestured and let out a chuckle. “Oh that? That’s from my exam in the magical reality chamber…” She shook her head. “The funniest thing happened, my ‘dead’ planet was Obsidian.” Valkyrie felt herself pale, flashes of a dark and foreboding castle and three full moons ran through her mind.
“Obsidian… That…. That’s a dead dark realm… Why would it choose you to send you there?” Valkyrie asked, trying to keep up her façade.
Flora shrugged. “I guess I had some residual dark energy from when we hung out at the swamp.” Valkyrie gave a weak smile.
“I guess so…” The intercom began to buzz.
“All passengers heading to Linphea, please report to bus five.” It spoke. Valkyrie gave a bit of a wave.
“Guess I’ll see you later?” Flora grinned, leaning to kiss Valkyrie’s cheek. The witch flushed, pushing her glasses up.
“Have a great Yule, Valkyrie. I’ll see you when we get back.” The fairy giggled, grabbing her bags and walking off. Cheshire made a little mewl sound.
“I know, Ches… I know… I’m so screwed.”
Chapter 17: Chapter Seventeen: Family Ties
- Family Ties
Morgan fell into the snow, laughing as she made snow angels. “Come on, Valkyrie, have a little fun.” The fairy laughed.
Valkyrie rolled her eyes, but gave a smirk. “You want me to have fun, Cousin, I’ll show you fun.” She half-taunted, rolling up a snow ball. She tossed it, hitting her cousin in the stomach.
“HEY!” Morgan squealed, quickly jumping to her feet and creating a snow ball herself. “You asked for it!” She yelled out, tossing the snow toward the witch. Valkyrie laughed, trying to duck for cover behind one of the fallen logs.
The Rancor snow always did something to them, made them feel more like children again. Innocent and without cares.
Of course, the freezing was never fun. An hour of tossing snow balls back and forth had the two cousins quickly scrambling for warmth inside their grandmother’s home.
Sasha and Cheshire seemed to laugh at them from their warm perches on the back of the couch. They shared a look as the girls huddled for warmth by the fireplace, arguing about the winner of the snow ball fight.
“How about we just agree you came to a stalemate?” Theodora asked, bringing warm mugs of hot chocolate from the kitchen. “After all, I witnessed the battle and it seems you were both doing well.”
Morgan shook, taking a gulp from her mug. “If… I had been allowed to use…. My winx…. I could have… Won.” She stuttered out. Valkyrie snorted.
“In… Your… Dreams… Pixie… I would’ve taken… you… down.” Valkyrie stuttered out, taking a drink from her own mug. Theodora shook her head, sitting on the couch.
“You two sound like your mother and father. I swear those two fought about everything and anything.” The older witch sighed, pulling a lock of gray hair from her eyes. “Though I should thank my lucky stars that they were never interested in the same boys… Now that would’ve been trouble.”
Morgan chuckled. “I can see that, Nana.” She shed her coat and gloves, finally warm enough with just her sweater and jeans. The half-elf sat beside her grandmother, not ashamed to cuddle up a bit. Valkyrie sat down in front of the fire place, removing her own coat and gloves.
“I think we should just be lucky they’re not as bad as they used to be… I’ve heard Uncle Palladium tell horror stories about some of the fights they had.” Valkyrie laughed.
Theodora shook her head. “It’s because Salvador was always reckless and Griffin was so careful… Or if wasn’t about that, it was about some plan Griffin came up with that Salvador didn’t follow through on.”
“I heard Aunt Griffin had her own reckless adventures though… I mean, I know Dad has his… Illusions of invincibility, but Aunt Griffin has her self-destructive tendencies.” Morgan reminded them. She looked to Valkyrie. “And I think you have them too, Ms. I Can Fight A Senior Witch.” Morgan taunted.
Valkyrie rolled her eyes. “My mom, just like Uncle Sal, only did what she thought she had to do. Neither of them are perfect.”
The front door came open. Three figures walked in, Griffin, Salvador, and Palladium. Each had something they were carrying. Food if the containers were to be believed. “Who isn’t perfect?” Palladium asked, shaking off his jacket and scarf.
“Nothing, Uncle Palladium… You three need help?” Valkyrie asked, getting to her feet. Morgan followed suit.
“Yeah, we’d love to help out.” She walked over.
“Thank you, girls, but I believe we have it.” Griffin told them, taking off a red knit cap and scarf.
“Mother, do you have any idea how cold it is out there…? I think we nearly froze.” Salvador playfully pouted. Theodora snorted.
“I don’t want to hear it, Sal. I watched your girls have a snowball war and they never complained.” Theodora stood. “Now what have we got…?”
Dinner was finished, and they had migrated back to the living room. Palladium and Salvador were leaned against each other on the couch, Griffin and Valkyrie shared the large arm chair. Daughter was dramatically draped over her mother. Morgan and Theodora were on the other end of the couch.
“No, you don’t understand, the magical reality chamber sent me to Quiera. Do you have any idea what that place used to do to elves?” Morgan shook her head. “And I was expected to survive there.” Palladium sighed.
“Morgan, you did splendidly on your exam. The only thing I can think of that I would have done differently is I wouldn’t have used a sun spell. Rain would have benefitted you much better.” Palladium tried to assure her. Morgan groaned.
“Still…” Salvador chuckled.
“Baby Girl, you did fine. You were in the top three, were you not?” Salvador asked. Morgan flushed.
“Yes, Dad… I just… I don’t know…” She leaned against Theodora. “I just felt like there was something going on with the machine.”
“I understand that… That student from Earth, Bloom, she was sent to Domino.” Palladium swallowed. “And her exam had certain Cloud Tower witches in it.” The elf looked to Griffin. “You don’t think…?”
Salvador swore softly. “I wouldn’t doubt it… I mean… Bloom. That’s not a common name, is it?” Griffin groaned.
“I’m not the one who should be talking about this… I barely know the fairy other than what I’ve heard from others… Hell, I’ve only met her once, and that was when she broke into my school.” Griffin told them.
Valkyrie looked to her mother. “They were just trying to get the Solarian ring back from Icy, Darcy, and Stormy… Besides, didn’t you once break into a castle to steal back something already stolen?”
Theodora gave a glare at that. “She did. And she almost died because of it. If your father hadn-”
“Mother! Do not start.” Griffin had her warning tone. Valkyrie and Morgan both perked up at that. No one ever seemed to mention Valkyrie’s father. Ever.
(She’d heard stories, here and there… She knew his powers. She knew his connection to the Ancestral Witches. She even knew he was blue-eyed, like her… But she didn’t know his name or even if he and her mother had actually cared for one another.)
“I want to hear this!” Valkyrie spoke, raising up and getting to the floor, away from her mother. “What happened?”
Theodora looked at the solemn looks on Griffin and Salvador’s faces. “That’s not a story for me to tell…” She looked at her granddaughter. “Maybe one day.”
Valkyrie glared. “Why does no one talk about him? I get that he’s evil and that he was sentenced to eternity in the Omega Dimension. And it’s not like I ever want to meet him… I just… Shouldn’t I at least know his name?” She felt her face drop as she asked. “Just his name.”
Griffin took a breath, looking over to Salvador. “I can’t, Valkyrie… He may be in the Omega Dimension… But names have power and I can’t just…” She swallowed. “I can’t just tell you without potentially starting something.”
Tension filled the room. “Hey… Here’s another interesting magical reality chamber story… Flora, one of the girls in my class, was sent to Obsidian… Doesn’t that sound like a match, Valkyrie?” Morgan tried to diffuse the situation.
Salvador hummed. “Flora huh? That name sounds familiar… Isn’t she Alyssa and Rhodos’ eldest daughter?” He asked, taking the bait.
Valkyrie sighed, realizing she wouldn’t get any further. “Yeah… It’s her and her little sister Miele. She actually told me about Obsidian. She said she passed.”
“She did. And with flying colors. I guess spending time around you prepared her for the negative energy of that world.” Palladium grinned.
“Maybe.” Valkyrie gave a slight smile. Theodora chuckled.
“So Flora… That’s the name of your girlfriend?” Valkyrie shook her head.
“We’re just friends, Nana…” Morgan laughed.
“Yeah… For now.” Morgan grinned. “I don’t know why you won’t just ask her out already. The girl is practically half in love with you. She’s always talking to her friends about you and wanting to bring you into their schemes… I even know that she squealed when she saw that Rancorian Viscious and the dark realm floral guide book.”
Salvador and Palladium gave a laugh. “Sounds like you should go for it, Valkyrie.”
“I agree. And Flora is one of my best students, very attentive. I’m sure she and you would make a lovely pair.” Palladium agreed. Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“That all sounds wonderful in theory… But what will she say when she finds out what I really am?” Valkyrie asked. Griffin and Salvador paused.
“What do you mean by that? She knows you’re a witch.” Salvador asked. “I mean… It’s not like you can hide that.”
“But she doesn’t know my true powers. I want to tell her, and I’m certain I could trust her… But with Icy, Darcy, and Stormy…”
“You’re worried about saying anything to anyone.” Theodora hummed. “That wouldn’t be too much of a problem… You just need to go with your gut. Tell her.”
Griffin placed a hand on her daughter’s shoulder. “I already told you what I think…. She seems like a lovely young lady. Even if she is a fairy.” Morgan whistled.
“Hello? Fairy right here.” She reminded everyone, teasing at herself. She got down from the couch and held her cousin. “But seriously, Val, you should tell her. Otherwise, you’ll be like me and a certain dark-haired artist… Pining over what could have been.” Valkyrie couldn’t help but chuckle.
“At least you admit you’re pining over him.” She teased, trying to change the subject. Morgan playfully hit her.
“Don’t make me start another war!” The fairy teased. Valkyrie smirked and grabbed her coat and gloves.
Chapter 18: Chapter Eighteen: Telling Flora
- Telling Flora
Valkyrie sat down on the throne room steps, giving a groan. “DA-ad. That is the lamest joke I’ve ever heard. You and Uncle Salvador need to stop hanging out.” She teased, raising up. The shadow on the throne just chuckled.
She turned to her mother, to get her input, but the older witch wasn’t there. A chill began to set in, the throne becoming covered in ice and snow.
“What’s… What’s going on here?! Who are you?” Valkyrie growled out, getting to her feet.
“You’re going to help us, witchling.” A haughty voice called.
“That’s right, Shrimp. Get to summoning.” Another voice snarled.
“Before we get nasty.” The third spoke. The shadows pulled away, revealing the Trix coven. “What are you waiting for, Valkyrie? Get to summoning! Our grandmothers won’t wait forever.”
Valkyrie glowered. “I don’t answer to you!” The three witches laughed.
“Oh, but you do, Valkyrie.” Darcy chuckled.
“Didn’t anyone tell you? You belong to us!” Icy brought out three crystals, placing them in a triangle. “Whisperian triangle, take her down!”
The crystals swirled faster and faster, encasing themselves around the younger witch. She screamed out, the crystals and their power stinging her skin.
“I… Won’t…. Do…. It.” She growled, trying to stand her ground. “I’m not your servant anymore!” Her power surged, forcing them back into the pillars.
She screamed herself awake, sitting straight up in bed. Her window and mirror were shattered, glass all around her floor.
Her door opened up, the light flashing on. “Valkyrie?!” Her mother’s voice was laden in concern. Valkyrie groaned, rubbing her eyes and grabbing for her glasses.
“Sorry… I just… I had a nightmare. Though it was… Vision-esque… Or it felt like it at least…” Valkyrie rubbed her head. “Sorry if I woke you.” Griffin shook her head, waving her hands to fix the damage.
She walked over and sat down beside her daughter, wrapping an arm around her. “It’s okay, Valkyrie. I was waking up anyway when I heard you scream…” She ruffled Valkyrie’s hair. “Lay back down and we’ll discuss it later if you wish, okay?”
Valkyrie gave a slow nod. “Okay…” She hugged her mother close. “I know I’m a bit too old to ask… but will you stay with me?” Griffin gave a slight smile.
“I will. Now lay down, Valkyrie… It’s only 6.” Griffin kissed her cheek. The younger witch gave a nod, laying back down and got close to her mother, stopping short of snuggling.
Her mother and uncle were talking in hushed voices in the other room. Valkyrie wanted to hear them, but knew better than to cast a spell or draw attention to herself. ‘I just had to tell her about my nightmare…’ She groaned internally, waiting.
Soon enough, Griffin came out of her bedroom and sat down in front of her daughter in the kitchen. “Valkyrie… I… There is something I need to tell you and… It’s not easy for me to say, nor is it easy for me to admit.” Valkyrie frowned.
“Mom… What are you talking about?” She asked. “Does this have to do with yesterday? Or was it my dream that brought this on?” Griffin ran a hand through her long purple hair, twirling a strand.
“Both…” Griffin paused. “I was a member of the Coven. You knew that. You also knew that I was high up in the Coven, due to my strategist skills and my relationship to your father.”
Valkyrie raised an eyebrow. “Yeah… What… Was there more to it?”
“We were bound by blood magic, Valkyrie… And…. I swore an oath in blood to them….” Griffin bit her lip. “It’s why Darcy’s ancestor could trace me even after I had left and dissolved my blood bond. It’s why she was able to know about you.”
Valkyrie felt the heat rising. “What else? Mother… What else happened?” Valkyrie asked.
“They told your father, though I didn’t realize that until we had stopped him from completely destroying Domino… When he threatened to hurt me to get to you.” Griffin shook a bit. Valkyrie shook her head.
“Okay… So he knows about me… That’s… Not too bad.” Valkyrie tried to shake the feeling that something was off. “But there’s more…. What aren’t you telling me?” Valkyrie asked.
Griffin got teary-eyed and Valkyrie mentally braced herself. She knew this wasn’t going to end well and she tried… She tried to reign in her anger and fear before it settled. “Mom. Tell me.”
“The reason… Lysslis and the others would even taunt me with you… Is if they had a plan for you… And they do… I… I discovered it when the Company of Light stormed Obsidian castle.” Griffin paused. “I found their prophecy… One that… Involves you and their grandchildren….” Valkyrie felt something snap inside her.
“What. Sort. Of. Prophecy?” Valkyrie asked, her power surging enough to break their lightbulbs. “Mother. What prophecy?!” Valkyrie nearly yelled.
Griffin swallowed. “A prophecy that you would break them out of Oblivion and bring them back into the world. But that’s not a sign it will-”
Valkyrie didn’t hear the rest of what her mother had said. She’d grabbed her bag and ran as fast as she could through the snowy Rancor streets.
Laying on the warm grass of Linphea and petting Cheshire wasn’t part of her plans. But considering how quickly everything had sort of turned for her on Rancor, she wasn’t sure where else to go.
Crystal would have turned her over to her mother, and so would Morgan. (Because they’d be ‘worried’ and thought that Griffin would be able to help her in such a trying time.)
Helia was over a three realms away at his art school. Her numerous ‘aunts’ and ‘uncles’ were busy with their other plans.
So Linphea was her choice. It was warm, inviting, and far enough away from it all. (And if fate would allow, she’d get to visit Flora…)
“I didn’t think I’d see you here.” Speak of the fairy… Valkyrie rose up, giving a weak smile.
“Hey… Long time, no see.” She tried to stay cool. Flora frowned, looking the witch over.
“Have you been crying? Your face is so red… And you look so upset… Did something happen? Did someone hurt you?” That last line came out a bit venomous for Flora’s voice and demeanor. Valkyrie would have remarked about it, if the fairy wasn’t so spot on.
She sighed, pulling her legs up to her chest. “I… I don’t want to bother you with it.” Valkyrie spoke, rubbing at her eyes. “It just… It’s not been the best day for me.”
Flora sat down in front of her in the grass. “I want to be bothered.” Flora smiled, taking Valkyrie’s hand. “Come on, Sweetie… What happened?”
Valkyrie thought for a moment. Should she risk it? ‘Trust her. Trust yourself.’ Her dragon spoke, soft and tender. “It’s… A long story and… You may hate me after you hear it.” Flora gave a slight chuckle.
“Oh Valkyrie, there’s very few things you could do to make me hate you.” She made herself a bit more comfortable, stroking Cheshire’s fur when he got closer to her. “Go on… I have all the time in the world.” Valkyrie bit her lip. ‘Here goes nothing.’
“So… I haven’t been completely honest about my powers or my dad… I mean… He is in the Omega Dimension, and yes he’s basically evil… And yes… My powers are inherited from him…” Valkyrie tried to think of the words. “But it wasn’t just a fire power…”
“It’s the Dark Dragon Fire… Isn’t it?” Flora asked. Valkyrie gaped a bit, shock overcoming her.
“How did… You know?” Flora gave a slight chuckle.
“Valkyrie… I knew after that fight in Magix… When you and Bloom kicked Icy and her troop to the curb. You had told us how powerful both dragons were, and seeing how you two synched up and basically messed up those other witches… I just… Had a feeling.” Flora smiled. “And I figured if I was right, you’d tell me when you were ready.”
Valkyrie pushed her hair back behind her ear, biting on her lip. “Yeah… I mean… And that… Doesn’t bother you?” Flora giggled.
“Why would it? You’re not your father and you’re not the Ancestral Witches. You’re good, Valkyrie. What will make you see that?” Flora took her hand. Valkyrie pulled her hand away, looking down.
“Flora… My mom just told me about a prophecy she’d seen in Obsidian… I’m supposed to bring the Ancestral Witches back from the dead… I….” Valkyrie felt the tears returning. “I’m supposed to help Icy, Darcy, and Stormy bring them back and summon the Army of Darkness. I am evil… I… I can’t stop a prophecy.” Flora crawled over and pulled Valkyrie close, running her hands through the short purple locks.
“Valkyrie… You’re not going to be evil. Only three out of five prophecies come true, and if I’ve learned anything about you, it’s that you’re your own witch. You don’t follow the crowd, you lead. So why would you think you’d be led by some prophecy created who knows how long ago by a bunch of power hungry hags?” Flora gave a smile.
“Besides, if you even began acting like you’d turn evil, my friends and I would stop you. We’d undo the spell or take out whoever was controlling you.” She tilted Valkyrie’s head up, making the stunned witch look her in the eyes.
“You, Valkyrie Sylvane, will never be like them. I can make sure of that. And so would your family.” She smiled. “Now… I need you to dry your eyes, Sweetie… You’re not going back to Rancor until you’ve met my family.” Valkyrie gave a laugh.
She couldn’t help it. The whole situation had felt so absurd… “Okay… You’ve got me.” She wiped her eyes again, fixing her glasses. “I’ll meet your folks, and then I’m going to have to head back to Rancor and apologize to my mother.”
Flora kissed her cheek. “That’s the spirit.” Valkyrie couldn’t help but flush as Flora stood and helped her to her feet.
Valkyrie leaned into her mother as the movie began to end. “Mom…. I know we don’t normally talk about things… But…. I am sorry about earlier.”
Griffin sighed, wrapping an arm around her daughter. “I am too. I should’ve told you sooner…” She gave a look. “Though if you had let me finish….”
“I would have found out that it could’ve been just wishful thinking on the Ancestral Witches’ side?” Valkyrie finished. “I… sort of realized that when I…. Talked it over with a friend.” Griffin chuckled, a knowing smile gracing her lips.
“Your friend wouldn’t happen to be a certain fairy would she?” Griffin teased. Valkyrie groaned.
Chapter 19: Chapter Nineteen: There's Witchery Afoot
- There’s Witchery Afoot
Griffin glared at Mirta. “That’s your favorite spell? A friendship spell? Mirta this is supposed to be a class on revenge and attack. Not friendship.” Griffin took a breath. “I’m going to have to fail you. Next witch.”
Mirta looked away, clearly hurt. She made her way back to her seat beside Valkyrie. “Hey… Don’t worry about it. She’s always harsh.” Valkyrie whispered to the redhead. Mirta sighed.
“If you… Say so.” The other witches were still cackling about Mirta’s answer and Valkyrie stood up.
“Anyone want to keep talking or do they want to be challenged?” Valkyrie challenged. The other freshmen froze, keeping their heads down. “That’s exactly what I thought. Now shut up and let’s continue our test. Shall we?” She plopped back down, giving a wink to Mirta.
The other witch gave a slight giggle, feeling a little bit better. “I’m so glad you’re so defensive over your friends. How about we hear about your favorite spell?” Griffin challenged Valkyrie.
Valkyrie stood up, feeling more confident than she had the first part of the semester. “My favorite spell involves the inner workings of my magic. I delve as far into the negativity as I can go, preferably during a new moon. The spell summons a flame that burns the victim from within, making them susceptible to telling me whatever it is I need to know. Once they’ve answered my questions, the flame will extinguish, though they may be horribly burned anyway. I call it the Flame of Truth.”
Griffin hummed. “Truth isn’t exactly something a witch uses, however forcing it out of others does come in handy. And for a spell that doubles as a form of torture…” Griffin gave a nod. “I pass you on this. But remember, the next time you try to issue a challenge in my class, you may be challenged by me.” Griffin warned.
Valkyrie gave a sheepish smile, her hand behind her head. “Yes Headmistress…” She went back to her seat, sighing a bit. “Why does she have to be so hard on me?” She whispered to Mirta. Mirta shrugged.
“You are her daughter. Guess that comes with it.”
Valkyrie groaned in frustration, tossing her potions textbook. Crystal gave a low whistle, looking up from the essay she’d been working on. “Problems, Val?”
“Potions… I’ve never been good at them.” She growled. “Morgan was always the potions expert… Her and her dads…” She leaned back in her chair. “Do you think I could pull off being ‘sick’ tomorrow? Or no?”
Crystal laughed. “We both know you don’t get sick.” The taller witch walked over to Valkyrie’s side of the dorm, leaning against her desk. “Look, I don’t know why you’re so worried. You’ve always done well in school. You practically have the best grades in the freshmen class.”
“I know… But potions has always been my weakest link…” She groaned. “Maybe I should call Morgan and see if she’d help me study.”
Crystal scoffed. “Oh, so we’re going to ignore the fact that I’m here and great with potions?” She teased. Valkyrie gave a look.
“I figured you’d be too busy working on that-” Both girls quickly turned to the door as Mirta burst through, breathing hard as if she’d been running. “What happened?” Valkyrie asked, jumping up.
“It’s… It’s Lucy… She still wants to be friends with Icy and the others… So I cast a spell to see what they were up to, so I could prove to Lucy that they don’t care about her…” Mirta gasped. “But I found something worse out… They’re wanting to hurt that fairy…. The one called Bloom. They kept saying something about taking her powers by using her book.”
Valkyrie felt her anger spike and turned to Crystal. “We’re going to have to find Bloom and keep Icy, Darcy, and Stormy away from her.”
Crystal sighed, setting their homework away. “Should’ve known something would come up.” She looked to the cats who were laying on her wardrobe. “You two be good. We’re going fairy hunting.” She looked to Mirta. “Lead the way, Red.”
Mirta gave a nod, walking the other two witches out of the freshman halls. “We’ll have to cut through Gloomy Wood…. It’s the fastest way.”
“All I know is those three witches will need to watch out. I’m done playing around.” Valkyrie growled. Crystal shook her head.
“We’re going to end up expelled… I just know it…”
“She should be right over here…” Mirta gestured to the clearing. Valkyrie closed her eyes, sensing out the fairy.
“You’re right, she’s here… Somewhere…” Valkyrie looked around. Crystal groaned.
“We’ve wandered around all night. We’ve missed our classes… And I’m pretty sure we’re going to get an earful from the Headmistress… Why don’t we just turn back now and-” a fire blast went right by her. “The Hell?”
“The next one won’t miss! You witch!” A familiar voice called. Defiant, though shaky. Valkyrie shook her head.
“Bloom! It’s me, Valkyrie!” The purple-haired witch got to where the redheaded fairy could see her. Bloom gave a sigh of relief.
“Oh good. It’s you… And… Friends?” Bloom tilted her head. Valkyrie gestured to Mirta and Crystal.
“This is Crystal and that’s Mirta… Look, we have to tell you something, and it’s really important.” Valkyrie started off.
“Icy, Darcy, and Stormy messed with your life book. They wanted to make you doubt yourself so they could steal your powers.” Mirta blurted out. Bloom took a step back.
“Wait… My powers…? Why? Why would they want mine?” Bloom asked.
“Does it matter? The point is, those three are beyond bad news and you should be careful.” Crystal told her. “Now… Let’s get your fairy butt back to Alfea so you can be safe and we can go back and plead our cases to make up todays assignments.”
Bloom gave a nervous chuckle. “You guys came out here just to look for me? That’s awfully sweet.” She looked to Valkyrie, slightly teasing. “Though I have a feeling you did it to earn brownie points with Flora… Right?”
Valkyrie flushed. “No. I came out here to help you because I despise the Trix coven, so I want to mess with them every chance I get. Mirta came to help because she’s legitimately a nice witch… And Crystal came because…”
“Valkyrie is impulsive as hell and someone has to be rational.” Crystal shrugged. “It’s a tough job, but someone has to do it. And that’s me until she finds a girl willing to put up with her.” Bloom gave a chuckle.
“Awww… That’s still nice.” A blast of ice went by, chilling the atmosphere.
“Sorry, we don’t like nice.” Icy cackled. “Check it out ladies, not only do we have a fairy, but we have three little traitors too.”
Darcy glowered at Valkyrie. “Didn’t we tell you to stay out of our way, or we’d mess you up?”
“Yeah, I think we did.” Stormy sent a blast of lightning toward them. The girls ducked away, getting behind trees.
Mirta glared, closing her eyes. “Illusion delusion!” She cast.
Valkyrie could hear the voices of Stella and the others, a part of Mirta’s illusion. She gave a thumbs up to the other witch, looking to Crystal.
“Crystalize!” Crystal called. Stormy had been distracted by the illusions and ended up with crystalized legs, forcing her down to the ground.
“Stormy why are you so stupid?” Icy glowered. “Guess I’m doing this myself.” She sent a wave of ice throughout the grove. Valkyrie swore, unable to move as the ice chilled her down to the bone.
Crystal and Mirta were iced together, and Bloom was stuck to a tree. Ice completely caking them.
She could hear muffled fighting overhead, managing a grin as she recognized the voices of Bloom’s friends.
The ice began to melt after a warm and sunny blast came over them, Valkyrie falling to her knees. “Great timing, Princess!” Valkyrie called.
“Hey, we had to come find Bloom.” Stella flew over. “You girls okay?”
“Peachy.” Crystal glowered, standing up. Mirta glared toward Icy and the others.
“I say we really get them.”
Stormy let out a roar and twisters began to overtake the clearing. Valkyrie felt herself heating up when she saw Flora nearly getting hit. “Darkening Pulse!” She cast, placing her hands on the ground.
A dark wave of power went upward, forcing the Trix coven back and away from the Winx girls. “Now!” Valkyrie called. Icy glowered, blasting the younger witch back.
“Now what?” She growled. Mirta stood between them.
“Just leave her alone!” Mirta growled. Icy looked back at her sisters.
“Are you girls hearing this Freshie?” She glared. “Oh Mirta, you’ve picked the wrong day to piss me off!” Icy cast a spell, and Mirta couldn’t get out of the way in time.
The girl was gone, a pumpkin in her stead. Valkyrie and Crystal gaped as the fairies gasped in horror.
Icy, Darcy, and Stormy began to laugh hard and loud. The term ‘losers’ and weaklings’ kept coming from their mouths and Valkyrie had had enough. She turned to Bloom. “Want to finish this?” She asked, her own voice not quite sounding right.
Bloom gave a nod, her eyes flashing as she shifted, her body glowing a bright red. That triggered Valkyrie into letting her power surround her. Their dragons converged, attacking the other witches and bringing about an explosive blast.
Steam came off of Valkyrie when all was said and done, she couldn’t help but collapse into the grass…
Valkyrie groaned when she came too, raising up in the grass. “Did anyone get the number off the levibike that hit me?” She asked.
“No… But I did see my life flash before my eyes.” Crystal deadpanned, raising up from where she’d been blast too.
“Next time you and Bloom wanna blow us all up, give us a warning.” Musa teased, standing up.
Valkyrie stood, wobbly on her feet. “Sure thing, Musa… Next time.” She looked around, smiling a bit when she saw Flora at the pumpkin. “That’s Mirta… She’s an amazing friend… Can you reverse the spell?”
“I don’t know… That was an advanced spell…” Flora picked up the pumpkin. “But I will try.” She gave a smile to Valkyrie. “I promise.”
“Great.” Valkyrie stretched, popping her shoulder a bit. “Where did they go anyway?”
“I believe you and Bloom may have sent them flying off into another realm.” Tecna spoke. “I mean… It may sound illogical, but the two of you are quite strong.”
“I’ll say. You both nearly singed my hair.” Stella whined. Valkyrie and Bloom gave a chuckle.
Valkyrie collapsed on her bedroom floor, groaning a bit. “I’m glad we got to make up our assignments… But I’m so tired now…”
Crystal huffed. “Do no start that with me. It was your idea to go save the fairy… Now we’re suffering the consequences. Exhaustion.”
Valkyrie whined a bit. “Carry me?”
“Not in this lifetime.” Crystal collapsed beside her. “Holy shit I think the floor may be even more comfortable than the bed.” Valkyrie couldn’t help but chuckle, wincing a bit when it became painful.
“Stop…. I don’t want to laugh. I’m sore…”
Chapter 20: Chapter Twenty: Pressing Your Luck
- Pressing Your Luck
Valkyrie looked the list over. “Are you sure you’ll need all of this Flora? I mean, it seems a bit extensive for a potion.” Flora took the list back from the witch.
“That spell Icy cast on Mirta was extremely powerful… So I’m doing the best I can to turn her back… Which means trying out every transfiguration spell and potion I can find.” Flora gave a slight pout. “Of course… If you don’t want to help me…”
The purple-haired witch shook her head, pushing her glasses back up. “I never said that. I just wanted to be sure of what we were getting before we walked into the herbology shop.” They took to the streets of Magix, following the signs.
“I’m just glad you agreed to come… This particular shop is… Friendlier… Toward witches.” Flora bit her lip. “And the best witch I know is you.” Valkyrie flushed a bit.
“Don’t worry, Flora, I’ll get the items.” They walked up to the herbology shop, protective gargoyles lined the stores rooftop. “Wait out here… I won’t be long.” Valkyrie promised. “And then after, we can grab a bite from the White Horse.”
“Sounds like a wonderful plan.” Flora grinned. She went to sit on the bench, a perfect waiting spot. Valkyrie gave her a once over before walking into the store.
“Are you sure this is all you’ll need, Valkyrie? I could give you a complimentary craven feather… Or perhaps a full brand new spell book?” Jiale, the shop owner tried. He was a friendly enough wizard, but Valkyrie knew the real reason he was always so nice to her.
“I’m good.” She took her bags, making sure she paid. “Now that we’re all squared away, what is you’ve been wanting to ask?”
“I’ve heard the Witches’ Ball is coming up… And you and my son do get along well enough…” Jiale tried to hint. Valkyrie shook her head.
“You and Harlan both know I’m into girls… I’m sorry, but no.” She gave a slight smile. “But there are a few other Cloud Tower witches who could be interested… Want me to help play matchmaker?” Jiale gave a weak smile.
“Sorry my dear… But it’s you that he keeps his eye on… And you know how he is… He won’t change his mind.” Valkyrie shrugged.
“He has good taste… But….” She looked toward the door. “I may be spoken for…” She gave a wave. “I’ll see you later!” She left the store, bags in hand.
“Okay, Flora… I’ve got everything you asked f-” She stopped, looking around the sidewalk. Flora was gone. Even her bag.
Valkyrie felt worry rising within her. “Flora?!” She looked around. “Flora?! Where are you?” She kept hold of the bags, walking around. ‘Maybe she went into another store… That’s it… Another store.’ Valkyrie tried to calm herself.
“Flora? Are you in here?” She called each time she entered a store. None of the other customers had seen her, and Valkyrie felt more and more worried.
“Heya… I heard you’re looking for a certain fairy.” A familiar voice called. Valkyrie felt her anger rise as she turned and faced the owner of the voice.
A tall yellow ogre in overalls. A known lackey for a certain group of witches. “Knut… I like you and I respect how you keep Cloud Tower clean, I do… But if your bosses do anything to Flora,” she grabbed his wrist for emphasis, letting him feel the burn, “then I will make sure you’re nothing but ash.”
The ogre yanked his arm away, whining a bit at the pain. “They’re in Gloomy Wood forest… I… I’m just a messenger.” He cried. Valkyrie glowered.
“I’m past the point of caring right now.” She looked at the bags and closed her eyes. She thought of Bloom and Alfea, sending the bags straight there. She turned to glare back up at the ogre. “Lead the way, or I’ll burn you anyway.” The ogre nodded, walking ahead of the witch.
“Well look who decided to show up. It’s nice to see you, Valkyrie.” Icy cackled. Darcy smirked, walking to the front.
“Aww… You look mad… What’s wrong?” Darcy taunted.
“Right… She’s probably looking around for her pixie girlfriend.” Stormy moved. “Look no further.” Flora was bound using a ringlet spell, the spirals keeping her tied and unable to connect to her magic.
“Valkyrie, it’s… It’s a trap. You need to leave!” Flora yelled out, mustering her energy. Valkyrie shook her head.
“I know it’s a trap… But I’m not going to leave you.” She looked to Icy, Darcy, and Stormy. “What do you three want? I don’t have any gaudy jewelry to give you. Lucy’s already doing your homework for the rest of the year. And I don’t have the power you want.” Valkyrie took a step up. “So what is it?”
“What do we want?” Icy chuckled. “We want you to learn your lesson.”
“You keep mucking up our plans by butting in. That’s so uncool.” Darcy walked over, placing a hand on Valkyrie’s shoulder. “So now you’re going to pay.” She used her psychic waves to blast Valkyrie into a tree.
The purple-haired witch groaned, raising back up. Stormy laughed. “My turn!” She conjured a tornado, the storm sucking Valkyrie in and keeping her from breathing.
She felt dizzy, disconnected. And stupid… So stupid.
Icy could be heard cackling, the tornado suddenly becoming colder as hail started being thrown into the mix. Valkyrie closed her eyes, trying to connect to her dragon, trying feel for his anger, but it wasn’t happening.
“ENOUGH!” Flora all-but-growled out. The tornado stopped when Stormy’s concentration broke, and Valkyrie fell to the ground.
She rose up, feeling a bit of pride swell within her as Flora broke through the spell they’d placed on her. “You three need a time out!” Flora growled, raising her arms.
As if she were their leader, all of the Gloomy Wood trees seemed to come to life, their vines and branches attacking the witches.
“How are you doing this?!” Darcy called out, disbelief and shock in her voice. Flora gave a laugh.
“We’re in Gloomy Wood Forest, ladies. This is nature. This is my domain.” She created some sort of sigil and the plants upped their assault on the senior witches.
Valkyrie rose up, ready to take her part. “This isn’t a fight you’re going to win.” Valkyrie taunted them, bringing forth her flames to burn at Icy and Stormy.
The three witches couldn’t face it much longer and teleported away. Valkyrie grinned. “We did it!”
She winced a bit when she felt arms wrap around her tightly. “I’m so glad you’re okay.” Flora whispered. “I was so worried when I saw you in that twister.” Valkyrie flushed, her eyes widening.
“Flora… I was worried about you. When I heard they’d taken you….” Flora shook her head.
“You shouldn’t worry about me. As soon as I knew where they were taking me, I knew I’d have an advantage.” Flora giggled. “Everyone forgets about how strong nature truly is.” She looked to trees and plants of Gloomy Wood. “Okay sweeties, you can all relax now… The bad witches are gone.” She coaxed them down, moving away from Valkyrie to pet them.
Valkyrie smiled. “I sent your items to Alfea by the way… I wasn’t sure what else to do with them…” Flora gave her a smile.
“That’s just perfect.” She walked back over, taking Valkyrie’s hand. “I know it’s getting late… But I do believe we had a dinner date.” Flora reminded. Valkyrie gave a sheepish smile.
“That’s only if you still feel up to it…” Flora kissed her cheek.
“I’ve been craving a cherry milkshake too long to forget about it now.” Flora teased, gently pulling Valkyrie back onto the path for Magix. “This way.”
Chapter 21: Chapter Twenty-One: The Nightmare Monster
- The Nightmare Monster
“Um… Valkyrie… There’s a pixi-I mean a fairy outside to see you… She seems kinda angry.” Vera came into the student lounge, hand on her hips. “Did you stand her up or something?”
Valkyrie frowned, getting to her feet and grabbing her bag. “No… What fairy is it?”
“Said her name was Flora.” Vera shrugged. “I could get-” Valkyrie rushed out of the room and into the lobby.
Many of her classmates were sneering a bit at Flora’s presence, but the fairy showed no fear. Her head was held high, defiant. “Valkyrie, I’m so glad you could see me…” She walked over, taking Valkyrie’s hand.
“Of course… Wish you would have called though, I could’ve been waiting for you.” Valkyrie told her. Flora gave a slight smile.
“I would have… But… It was sort of a last minute decision.” Flora admitted sheepishly. “But it’s really important.”
“You cured Mirta?” Valkyrie asked. Flora sighed, looking down.
“No… That’s the one thing I haven’t done yet… But I’ve been trying…” She bit her lip. “Is… There somewhere we can go…?”
Valkyrie looped an arm through Flora’s. “Come on… My room is safe.” She looked to the other witches who were staring. “What? Wanna picture? Or are you jealous that I can get a girl?” Valkyrie teased, giving a wink and leading Flora up to the freshman hall.
Flora giggled a bit. “So does this mean you consider me your girl?” Flora teased a bit as they walked the hall. Valkyrie flushed, opening the door to hers and Crystal’s room.
The other witch was working as a teacher’s aide for Professor Pandora, which meant she and Patches were gone for the evening. “So… What’s on your mind?” Valkyrie asked, ignoring the previous subject.
Flora seemed to sober up, sitting on Valkyrie’s bed. Cheshire sashayed over, plopping himself down in her lap. She chuckled a bit, petting his fur. “He’s sweet…”
“He’s a player… Don’t let him fool you.” Valkyrie teased. “But seriously… What’s going on?”
Flora glared, something that didn’t happen often. “I don’t have proof… but those witches sent some sort of creature after us last night… It really drained Stella, Tecna, and Musa after giving them nightmares.” Valkyrie frowned.
“Sounds like a nightmare gargoyle. But we’re not supposed to mess with creatures like that… Those things are way too lethal.” Valkyrie sat down in her seat. “But I feel like you know that much.”
“I do… Mirta… I was able to project her a bit… And she told us about the creature… But she didn’t know how to stop it.” Flora gave a slight smile. “I was hoping you would…?”
Valkyrie hummed. “I know they’re weaker if you attack in a group… It’s why they pick you off one by one, they can’t handle an ambush.” She thought for a moment. “And sunlight… It’s why they only attack at night.”
Flora grinned. “That’s great…. That means it can be stopped.” Valkyrie nodded.
“Most creatures can be.” She handed Flora her beastology book. “This should tell you what you need to know…” She gave a smile. “The five of you can take on a simple nightmare gargoyle. I believe in you.”
Flora stood, hugging Valkyrie close. “You’re so incredible. Thank you for helping us out.” She pulled away just a bit, pushing Valkyrie’s glasses back for her. Valkyrie flushed a bit, giving a sheepish smile.
“I never turn down a friend.” She said. Flora gave a knowing smile.
“Friends? Friends are great… But you know… You never did answer my earlier question...” Flora all-but purred. Valkyrie opened her mouth to retort when the door opened.
“You won’t believe what Professor Pandora had me-” Crystal paused, a knowing smirk crossing her face. “Oh… Am I interrupting?” She teased. Valkyrie’s flush deepened and Flora gave a slight laugh.
“Oh… We’re fine.” She looked to Valkyrie. “Would you walk me back downstairs, please? I… I don’t think the other witches like me being here as much as you do.” Flora extended her hand.
Valkyrie took it. “Come on… Back downstairs.” She looked to Crystal. “I’ll be back…” Crystal smirked, draping herself in her chair.
“Oh… I’ll be waiting.”
“Thank you again, for the information.” Flora smiled, starting to turn to leave. Valkyrie swore, grabbing her wrist. “Yes?” Flora turned back to her. “You okay?”
“I’m fine… I just…” Valkyrie let go of Flora. “You asked me twice if I considered you mine… And… I know it was said in jest…. But…” Valkyrie flushed, trying to find the words to say. ‘Don’t chicken out.’ Her dragon warned.
“Flora… I do like you… A lot. And… I just… I never wanted to make assumptions becau-” She was cut off by Flora pulling her closer and bending a bit, kissing her. Valkyrie felt herself melt into the fairy, her arms going to wrap around her.
They pulled away, foreheads touching and breathless. “That was…. I….” Valkyrie couldn’t find the words. Flora giggled a bit, tilting Valkyrie’s chin up.
“I take it that was okay?” Valkyrie swallowed.
“That was more than okay, Flora… I…” She smiled a bit, giddy. “How did…. When did you start…?”
“I’ve liked you for a while now, Valkyrie… I tried to make it obvious, but I guess we’re both a bit shy and oblivious.” Flora laughed. Valkyrie grinned, still blushing.
“Yeah… I guess.” She leaned up, kissing Flora’s cheek. “Be safe tonight, okay? I’d hate to lose the girlfriend I just got.” Flora giggled.
“Don’t worry, Honey. We’ll be fine.” She gave a wink. “And we can talk about us a little later… If you want.”
“I think as long as we’re on the same page… Which is that we’re together… I don’t have to know the rest right now… Though it would be nice to know when you actually started thinking of me that way…” Valkyrie grinned. Flora smiled.
“We’ll talk soon. Bye, Valkyrie.” The fairy winked, shifting and flying off. Valkyrie couldn’t help but feel like she was swooning a bit, lightheaded and giddy feeling…
Flora liked her back. Flora kissed her. Flora…. Flora was hers.
Crystal was still teasing her after lights out, making jokes about Valkyrie being clueless and scared when it came to feelings.
But it didn’t bother her… She was far too happy with how her day had turned out…
(And at breakfast the next day, when the announcement about the Trix coven’s expulsion would come, Valkyrie would declare this the best week of her life.)
Chapter 22: Chapter Twenty-Two: The Day of the Royals
- Day of the Royals
Valkyrie waited outside of Red Fountain for Flora and Morgan to arrive. Her mother and Uncle Palladium were already at their seats and Crystal was most likely getting some last minute alone time with Kota before the events…
“Hey! Sorry we’re late!” Morgan called, running up and hugging her cousin. Valkyrie held her tight, trying to keep from wincing at trying to hold her cousin up.
“I was sort of nervous about to wear…” Flora admitted, kicking at the ground. Valkyrie smiled, moving away from her cousin to take her girlfriend’s hand.
“You look amazing.” Valkyrie assured her, glancing at the pink sundress. “Absolutely stunning.” Morgan chuckled.
“Aren’t you two just soooo cute.” Morgan teased. Valkyrie rolled her eyes, pulling out the invitations.
“Come on… Let’s grab our seats before they get taken. Crystal’s already inside.” Valkyrie smiled as Flora looped her arm through hers, walking in through the main gates.
Morgan took the invitations from Valkyrie, flashing them toward the security guard. “We’re here for our seats, please.” She gave a sweet smile. The man nodded.
“Of course, Ms. Sylvane… And Ms. Sylvane… And guest. Um… Just follow the arrows.” He gave a nervous chuckle. Flora giggled a bit.
“I take it you girls get to come every year?” She asked, walking through the bleachers.
“Oh yeah… My dad always makes sure his family gets to see his pride and joy: the Wizard’s Brigade.” Morgan bragged a bit. “He’s incredible at teaching the next generation of wizards how to use their power. And Kota is part of it.”
“Crystal’s boyfriend… Right?” Flora asked.
“That’s the one. He also claims his sword fighting skills have gotten better, but I’d have to test that out myself.” Valkyrie chuckled.
“Speak of the devil.” Morgan chimed in, gesturing to their seats. “Long time, no see Kota!” Morgan rushed over, hugging the tall wizard. He laughed, spinning her a bit.
“If it isn’t my favorite fairy.” He teased, looking up to see Valkyrie and Flora walking over. “Do my eyes deceive me? Valkyrie Sylvane you’ve got yourself a girl.” He taunted. Valkyrie scoffed, taking her seat by Crystal.
“Just be thankful I’m not interested in Crystal… Or you’d be history.” She teased back. Crystal rolled her eyes.
“Come on… Let’s not start that old shit today. We’re here to watch Kota do his first Wizard’s Brigade…” Crystal reminded them.
Flora took her seat by Valkyrie, holding her hand. “What exactly does that entail anyway?” Kota grinned, pulling Crystal up and holding her to him, drawing out his sword.
“It means balancing our natural powers with our weapons, proving just how strong we are at both weaponry and magic.” He gave a grin and bow, kissing Crystal’s hand. “Of course, it’s just a way to show off.”
“That’s the whole point of today, isn’t it? Showing off in front of the royal families?” Crystal asked, sitting back down.
“Sort of… The Day of the Royals is mostly for the royals who… Sponsor… Red Fountain. Which is mostly the King and Queen of Eraklyon.” Kota gave a sheepish smile. “But it’s still going to be exciting. And there’s a dance after.” He waggled his eyebrows at Crystal. “Feeling like magic?”
Crystal laughed, shaking her head. “When did your jokes get so corny?”
“Hanging out with my dad, probably.” Morgan teased, leaning back in her seat. “Are they bringing out the dragons this year?”
“Yeah… But only the ones the sophomores have been raising.” Kota sighed. “But I can’t blame them on that… I just hope Riven and Brandon don’t get into it.”
Flora tilted her head. “Are they still fighting?”
“Yeah… Ever since Riven started hanging out with those witches.” Kota shrugged. “But what can you do? Some guys are just jerks.”
Crystal gestured out to the crowd of specialists, singling one with brown hair and blue tips to Valkyrie. “And some are stalkers… That’s Harlan isn’t it?”
Valkyrie groaned, leaning into Flora. “I do not want to deal with him today… I don’t get why he doesn’t understand that I’m not into guys. Never have been, and unless a spell is cast, never will be.”
Flora ran her fingers through Valkyrie’s hair, humming a bit. “Who is he anyway?”
“A guy that Valkyrie helped out when we were kids. And since then, he’s sort of worshiped her and keeps trying to get her to go on a date with him.” Morgan shook her head. “He’s the perfect example of ‘girls can’t be nice without guys thinking they like them’.”
A bell sounded and Kota gave Crystal a quick peck on the lips. “As much as I’d love to stay and talk, that sound means it’s almost time to start.”
“Be careful out there, Lover Boy.” Crystal teased. He gave a wink.
“Come on, we all know I’m more careful than Val.” He teased, walking toward the field. Morgan laughed.
“He has a point. You do have a thing for putting yourself into mortal danger.” Morgan told her cousin.
Valkyrie huffed, laying her head on Flora’s shoulder. “Do you see how they treat me, Flora? Now do you see why I am the way I am?” She pouted. Flora giggled.
“It’s okay, Sweetie. They mean well, I’m sure.” Crystal snickered.
“Oh yeah. We totally mean well.”
Valkyrie and Morgan swore when they saw the levibike crash into the barrier. “That’s going to leave a mark.” Valkyrie winced.
“Oh he’ll be feeling that tomorrow.” Morgan shook her head. “No doubt about it.”
“Who crashed? Sky or Brandon? I can’t tell with the helmets.” Flora asked.
“Whoever it was, they’ll be so sore.” Crystal grimaced.
Valkyrie could feel uneasiness in the crowd when Riven and Brandon began acting like they were going to start a fight with their dragons. And the relief when Codatorta broke them up. “Ten bucks says they’ll be cleaning stables for a month for that stunt.” Crystal placed her bet.
“I’ll get in on that, though I’ll say it’ll be more like two months.” Morgan placed hers. “Flora, Valkyrie?”
“I’m not going to bet on the boys’ misfortune. That wouldn’t be right.” Flora spoke. Valkyrie was going to give her answer, when the ground opened up and smoke shot out. “Oh no…”
“Isn’t that… Bloom?” Crystal asked. Morgan swore.
“Ms. Faragonda is going to kill her.” Morgan groaned.
“What is she thinking?” Valkyrie asked. The fight seemed to end quickly when Brandon rushed over to the girls… And then answered to Sky.
“Oh… Identity swap… That’s going to be fun to explain.” Crystal shook her head.
Flora sighed, kissing Valkyrie’s cheek. “I’m going to go check on her… I’ll call you when I find out how things are going to end up…” Valkyrie gave her hand a squeeze.
“Just be careful…” She handed Flora her invitation. “And that’s so you can prove you weren’t part of whatever just happened. I know you’re all a group… But you shouldn’t have to go down for them.”
Flora gave a slight smile. “Thank you. And I promise to get you an update.” She made her way off the bleachers and to where Faragonda was rounding up the other Winx Club members.
The sound of heels clacking behind them had Morgan, Valkyrie, and Crystal turning around. Griffin was waiting, a bit of a smirk on her face. “I don’t know how Faragonda will explain this to the Grand Council… But I bet it’ll be entertaining.”
Valkyrie gave a look. “Oh come on, Mom. You two are friends and you’d hate if she got fired over this.” Griffin scoffed.
“She’s not going to be fired over this. Faragonda’s too good at what she does… I can’t say the same for those fairies of hers though…” She looked to Valkyrie. “Was Flora part of it?”
“No way. She was up here with us until the fight broke out.” Morgan stood, holding her hand up. “I’ll swear to that.”
“Same here. Honestly, I think all of the girls were innocent but Bloom.” Crystal stood, stretching. “So… Is the rest of the show canceled? Is there still going to be a dance?”
Griffin shook her head. “The damage the fight caused is a bit extensive for the show… And because of the boys’ actions earlier, Saladin has called off the dance. I’m afraid we’ll be heading back to Cloud Tower.”
Morgan looked down at the arena where her dads were talking and trying to magically fix some of the arena. “I’m going to help my dads… I don’t think Ms. Faragonda would mind.”
Crystal looked at her phone, smiling a bit. “Kota and I are heading to White Horse.” She looked to Valkyrie. “Let me know when Flora updates you.” Crystal gave a wink, walking down with Morgan.
Griffin shook her head. “Are you coming with me or sticking around?”
“I’m heading back with you… I’m sure Cheshire misses me.” Valkyrie gave a smile. “You know… Bloom blew her power today, and I didn’t react… That’s a good sign, right?”
“It’s something… Perhaps it only happens if you’re angry yourself…?” Griffin wondered. “I mean… Your father and Marion never…” She shook her head. “Come on… Let’s make sure the witches who stayed behind didn’t burn the castle down.”
Valkyrie frowned a bit at the text Flora sent her. Four of the five girls were in trouble because they snuck onto school grounds… But Bloom was the main one in trouble for fighting with Princess Diaspro.
And that name… It really stuck out. “Kota and I had the best time at the White Horse… They were having a couples’ night and we danced a bit… It was… dare I say… Romantic?” Crystal came into the room, sighing a bit. Noticing Valkyrie’s mood, she frowned. “Okay… What’s up…?”
“Most of the girls are in trouble because of today…” She paused. “Isn’t the Princess of Isis named Diaspro?” Crystal grimaced a bit.
“Oh yeah, that bitch… Her family is partially the reason mine left Isis…” She laid back on her bed. “They were supporters of the Ancestral Coven… I mean… It was covert support, but support nonetheless. My dad worked as their librarian and found out about their treachery and he grabbed my mom and me and bolted.”
Valkyrie hummed. “Think they’re still supporters?” Crystal rose up, shrugging.
“Who knows…? Why? Did you get a weird vibe from her?” Crystal asked. Valkyrie shook her head.
“No… It’s… More like I just have a feeling whenever I hear her name… Diaspro… There’s just something… There. And it’s not good.” Valkyrie sighed. “Or maybe it’s a bias…”
“Could be.” Crystal looked out her window. “Hey… Have you noticed how much… Deader… Things have gotten? I mean, the atmosphere around here has always been dark but this… This feels all kinds of wrong.”
Valkyrie frowned. “I have… But I’ve been trying not to think about it…” She pulled her legs up to her chest. “Do you think those three are planning something?” Crystal groaned.
“Aren’t they always?”
Chapter 23: Chapter Twenty-Three: A Shift in the Air
- A Shift in the Air
“Ms. Sylvane, am I boring you?” Professor Zarathustra asked, getting in front of Valkyrie’s desk. Valkyrie gave a slight smile.
“Of course not… I was just taking very diligent notes.” Valkyrie picked up her notebook. “See? Just notes.” Zarathustra gave her a look.
“Just try not to look like you’re falling asleep. That’d be a travesty for you at this point.” The older witch warned. The bell rang, and Valkyrie sighed in relief, grabbing her bags.
“Yes ma’am.” She gave another smile, making her way out of the classroom. Lucrezia walked up to her, placing a hand on her shoulder.
“What’s up with you, Valkyrie? You’ve been like a zombie for days now…” She played with her long blue strands. “It’s upsetting the rest of us… I mean… we’re worried that it means… Something’s wrong in the world… I mean… You’re so in tune with everything…”
Valkyrie swallowed, trying to show a brave face. “Everything’s fine… I’ve just been hitting the books too late at night. That’s all.” She gave a forced smile. “In fact… I think I’m going to try for a power nap before dinner.”
The other witch bit her lip. “If you say so…” She paused. “Hey… Is it true… About you and that one fairy?” Valkyrie shot her a look.
“If you’ve got something to say, say it to my face.” The purple-haired witch challenged. Lucrezia shook her head, no doubt remembering what happened the last time Valkyrie challenged anyone.
“I was just wondering… You two are a lovely couple. A true Hades and Persephone.” The witch gave a smile. “Honest.” Valkyrie took a breath.
“Right…” She yawned, stretching. “I’m heading to my dorm… If you see Crystal, let her know that’s where I am.”
She checked her messages before laying down, feeling unsettled by one of them in particular. Flora claimed that Bloom had left for Earth in the middle of the night. No letter, no explanation. And even though the others had tried talking her out of it earlier that day, it didn’t seem to work.
Valkyrie rubbed Cheshire, hoping his presence would calm her down some. “I have a bad feeling about this… Something bad is going to happen… Bloom shouldn’t be alone….” She grabbed her phone, messaging Flora back that someone should go after Bloom.
Not even a few minutes later, she responded with ‘Stella just left’. Good… Stella was strong, even if she only had half her strength. And it meant Flora wasn’t directly in danger… And that Bloom was going to be okay.
She yawned again, stretching out on her bed, curling up with Cheshire for her much needed nap….
Darkness befell the realm, a cold chill filled the air, and lightning storms lit up the sky. Panic rose within her, fear surrounding her.
“Come out and play with us, Valkyrie… Don’t you want to rule too?” A voice cackled and laughed, the cold air quickly turning into snow…?
No… Not snow. Freezing rain. Snow was gentle and fell softly. This… This felt like little knives were cutting into her skin. ‘Run. Don’t let them catch you.’ A familiar and much loved voice called to her.
Valkyrie took his advice and ran as fast as she could, never slowing down. “Oh please… You know you can’t walk away from us. We own you.” A voice chuckled. “Now be a dear and sit down.” The voice commanded.
A psychic attack forced Valkyrie onto her back, keeping her down on the ground. She struggled, forcing herself up to her feet, even when it felt like her bones would break from the strain.
‘Quick. They can’t catch us if we take to the sky.’ That voice called again. Before Valkyrie could question it, she was in the air, on the back of a black and red dragon. Her dragon.
They flew swiftly through the air, managing to dodge icicles and psychic blasts. “You can’t escape us that easily!” A voice growled out.
Lightning struck the dragon, forcing him to fall to the ground. Valkyrie rolled off, feeling weakened and dizzy. She opened her eyes, gasping as she saw the Whisperian Triangle form over her dragon, his screams of death piercing inside of her.
“No! You can’t do that!” She yelled out, feeling her power overwhelm her. The dragon rose again, lunging at the triangle holders. “I’m not going to be your lackey!” She growled.
“Time and again we were forced to run from you. Well I’m done running!” Valkyrie stood, the dragon swirling around her, ready to lunge again. “Come and get me.”
She woke up in the floor of her room, her legs still sort of on her bed. Cheshire was licking the sweat off her face, an attempt to clean her up. Crystal was walking into the room, letting out a low whistle.
“You look like you’ve been having one of those dreams again.” Crystal walked over, helping Valkyrie back to her feet. “You okay?”
Valkyrie groaned, grabbing her glasses from her desk. “I guess… I….” She shook her head. “I have this feeling that something bad is going to happen tonight… And I guess it’s woven itself into my dreams.” She let out a breathless laugh. “I mean, I dreamed of Icy, Darcy, and Stormy… How dumb is that? They’re a non-issue.”
“I don’t know….” Crystal frowned. “I hate to admit it… But sometimes your little friend is right when he gives you those dreams… Remember how you saved us from taking that death trip to the Ice Kingdoms? You basically stopped us all from going because you faked being sick? Pissed the rest of us off… And then the next day on the news, there was that unexplained hailstorm that nearly demolished the realm?”
Crystal took her hands. “You saved us that day because of your dragon’s feelings… And… I mean… It was right to be worried about Musa that day. And then when you tried to save Bloom from their little trick…” Crystal sighed. “I know I don’t encourage you to listen to it enough, but he’s usually right on these things.” Valkyrie leaned into her friend.
“Yeah? Well I don’t want to be right about this… Because in my nightmare… They had a portion of the Dragon Fire. Not mine… The power wasn’t… Right… Like… It had a dark shadow over it, but I could feel the light still pouring from it.”
“Which means… They took Bloom’s?” Crystal asked. “Maybe we should warn her…. Call Flora and-” Valkyrie swore.
“We can’t… She went home… Which… I mean… Maybe she’s safer on Earth than she is here in Magix. Right? I mean… Those three wouldn’t look for her there… Would they?” Valkyrie asked.
Crystal swallowed. “Look… It’s almost dinner time… So why don’t we head down to the cafeteria and then we can formulate a plan after we’ve ate?” Valkyrie nodded.
“Right… That… That’s a good plan.” She grabbed her bag, frowning. “My bag’s heavier than….” She opened it up, shaking her head. Cheshire was snug inside, sleeping. “Fine… Guess he gets to come.” She shook her head, fighting a smile.
Crystal chuckled. “You were always a softie for him.”
“The only man I need.” Valkyrie laughed. She felt lighter, a little better about the situation.
Chapter 24: Chapter Twenty-Four: Rise of the Army of Darkness
(See the end of the chapter for notes.)
- Rise of the Army of Darkness
Valkyrie tried to relax enough to eat, but it didn’t help. Something was off and… At least Cheshire was getting to eat his weight in turkey.
“Hey… Is that?”
“Oh. My. Darkness. The expelled students.”
“Icy, Darcy, and Stormy? They have a lot of nerve.”
Her ears perked up at the gossip around her table, peering down. Sure enough, Icy and her sisters were standing there, like they owned the place. And something was… Different about them.
Stronger. Dangerous. ‘They have it. They have her.’ Her dragon snarled. “I thought I made it perfectly clear you three were no longer welcome in this school.” Her mother stood up from the teacher’s table, firing blasts of energy at them.
Icy laughed and froze the energy, shattering and sending it back to her mother, making Griffin fall back. Zarathustra, Ediltrude, Pandora, and Gilda took a stand. “You’ll pay for that you little brats!” Zarathustra growled and fired her own power blasts, Ediltrude letting hers mingle.
Darcy cackled and sent them flying. “Go on Stormy, show these witches what’s up.” Darcy laughed.
“With pleasure.” Stormy conjured up a powerful storm, one powerful enough to suck in most of the witches.
Crystal glowered, holding tight to the railing and to Valkyrie. “We have to do something.” Crystal groaned out. “Maybe a relocation spell?”
“Let’s do it.” Valkyrie closed her eyes, picturing her fellow students safely on the ground. Crystal cast her own spell, chrysalis’ encasing the other students and placing them safely to the ground.
Icy laughed. “Aw that’s cute. Still standing up for your fellow witches, Valkyrie?” Icy purred. Valkyrie glowered, about to attack when an energy blast smacked Darcy and Stormy down.
“You three need to get out of my school.” Ms. Griffin growled, powering up for another attack.
Icy snickered, sending Ms. Griffin into the wall, ice encasing her. “Here’s the thing, ladies. We have the Dragon Fire now. So unless you want to end up like Ms. Griffin and the rest of our teachers, you’re going to do exactly as we say.”
Valkyrie’s fist had been clenched so tightly, she could feel blood. Nothing felt right anymore, and seeing her mother like that. “I think she told you to get the hell out of here.” Valkyrie, no, her dragon, spoke. Voice dangerously calm despite the clear signs of anger.
Icy shook her head. “You really don’t know when to give up, do you?” She powered up her ice and Valkyrie tilted her head, watching as Icy’s eyes widened and her hands begin steaming. “What the…”
“You’re not the most powerful witch here, Icy… I am.” Valkyrie stood straight up, hands summoning her dragon and lashing out at Icy and her sisters, forcing them into the walls.
Darcy collapsed on top of Stormy groaning. “What the hell was that?”
“Icy… What’s going on here?” Stormy growled. Icy glared, getting back to her feet.
“I have the Dragon Fire, little girl. Those cheap tricks won’t work on me.” Icy dusted herself off. “Or is that all you’ve got?”
“What I’ve ‘got’ is thousands of years’ worth of anger and rage built up toward you and your coven. What I’ve got is the Dark Dragon Fire. And what you’re going to get is a one way trip to Oblivion with your grandmothers.” Valkyrie felt the power consume her, darkness holding tight to her, a dragon coiling and forming from it.
“You are not going to survive this day.” Valkyrie vowed, her hands moving to cast. “Dark Dragon’s Wrath!” She growled out, the dragon coiling around her lunging out and ripping at Icy, Darcy, and Stormy. The smell of smoke was coming from them, their screams of disbelief and pain becoming music to her ears.
Valkyrie kept up the assault, taking steps toward them. “What’s the matter? Scared of a little revenge, Belladonna?” Valkyrie taunted Icy. “Or perhaps, you’re just angry because you didn’t realize you had the dragon underneath your nose this whole time.”
A flash of light surrounded Valkyrie, breaking her concentration for the spell. She could barely hear the faint sound of a spell being cast by Crystal, and then nothing.
Everything went dark, and she felt drained… More drained than she had ever been…
Everything ached as she came too, a slightly metallic feel surrounded her. “Easy there, dear… You really drained yourself.” A soft voice spoke. Valkyrie’s eyes opened quickly and she rose up, gasping for air.
Everything was blurry, but… Pink? “Where am I? Where are they?” She all but sneered. “I had them in my grasp. I was going to end it.”
“Here sweetie… These may help…” A soft voice spoke. She saw one of the blurs move and then… Flora… Her glasses were back… and she was… at Alfea?
Had to have been Alfea. Their nurse, Ophelia, was checking her over. Faragonda was looking worried in the corner. Flora by one side, Morgan on the other, holding Cheshire. And Musa, Tecna, Bloom, and Stella were sitting on a bench in the room. “How did I get here?” She asked, voice hoarse.
“Professor Palladium found you outside our barrier… Unconscious… What happened?” Faragonda asked. “And what were you going to finish?”
Valkyrie glowered, everything rushing back to her. “Icy, Darcy, and Stormy came into Cloud Tower and tried to take over. And I snapped.” Valkyrie felt her hands tremble, still shaking with anger.
“Icy said something about having the Dragon Fire… and so I decided to show her what the real Dragon Fire looks like. And I had them on the run and terrified. He was finally going to have peace and be rid of them… But… Someone… Someone was casting and I lost concentration…”
“And you blacked out… You know your temper was always something you needed to keep reigned in.” Faragonda chastised.
“We tried to tell her, but she obviously doesn’t listen.” Morgan shook her head. “You could have been killed. Again.”
“Again…? Hello…? Someone want to explain this to us? I thought Bloom had the Dragon Fire? And what’s this about dying again?” Stella asked. Valkyrie pushed her hair back, trying to relax enough to tell them.
“There’s a reason my dad isn’t in the picture. He was a lackey for the Ancestral Coven and… He was the keeper of the Dark Dragon Fire. The counterpart to your Dragon Fire, Bloom… And… Well he was sent to Omega for his crimes… And I inherited the Dark Dragon’s Fire… Which means I have the soul of the original dragon merged to mine…”
“And going by that story… That means he’s still salty about his death… And was using you to get revenge on the Trix?” Stella asked. “Clever…” Bloom glared.
“You knew about my powers? Didn’t you? Is that why I could always sense you out?” Bloom asked. Valkyrie groaned.
“Look, I wanted to tell you. But my mother and Ms. Faragonda forbade it.” Valkyrie stretched. “Besides, I have a feeling you wouldn’t have believed me anyway.”
“Yeah, well thanks… Now Icy, Darcy, and Stormy have my powers and are going to do horrible things with it.” Bloom wiped at her eyes.
“Don’t worry, Bloom… We can fix this…” Tecna assured her.
“Yeah. We are the Winx Club.” Musa tried to cheer her up.
Flora kissed Valkyrie’s cheek. “And you’ll both be ready to kick those Cloud Tower dropouts to the curb.” Valkyrie looked to the nurse.
“Am I free to go?”
“That depends, are you going to be self-destructive again?” The nurse asked. Valkyrie gave a sheepish smile and was about to answer when Palladium rushed in.
“Girls, we need you. All of you. There’s a massive army outside…” Palladium looked to Faragonda. “It’s the Army of Darkness…” Faragonda shook her head, fists clenching.
“Girls… Go do what you can. You too, Valkyrie… If you’re up for another round.” Faragonda asked. The girls nodded, shifting into their winx forms. All but Bloom.
Morgan helped Valkyrie out of the infirmary bed after her wings came out, looking to Cheshire. “Be good, Cat.”
“Cheshire, guard the nurse.” Valkyrie commanded, giving a wink. She turned to Bloom. “Come on, I’m sure you can still kick some butt.” She extended a hand. “I believe in you.”
Bloom gave a slight nod, taking Valkyrie’s hand. “Let’s do this.”
‘Army of Darkness. More like Army of Decay. They smell of death.’ Valkyrie thought, blasting as many of the little thugs as she could.
Some of smaller bugs tried to combine on her legs, but were easily deterred when she heated up. “Venus Fly Trap!” She heard Flora command. Valkyrie smiled, watching as two large plants came from the ground, swallowing several bug monsters.
The Alfea fairies were giving no leeway to the monsters, firing with everything they had. Even the enchantix fairies seemed to be doing some good.
Valkyrie gasped, seeing one of the larger golem like creatures going after Musa. “Dark Dragon Blast!” She growled out, making the thing pop.
“Thanks for the assist!” Musa gave a thumbs up, taking to the air. “Watch it, Stella! Boogie Blaster!” She conjured up a disco ball that blasted sound waves toward the monsters, popping them all.
Morgan flew from the east wing, getting beside her cousin. “I’m thinking we should do the Sylvane Tango move, Cousin.” She extended her hand. Valkyrie grinned.
“With pleasure, Cousin.” She took her cousin’s hand, heading into the air with Morgan. They ‘danced’ in the sky, each time they came to a sharp move or twist, a blast of dark energy and natural power would radiate off of them and blast down a group of monsters.
They kept it up the best they could, but eventually had to land. “I don’t know if I can keep this up…” Morgan groaned. “I feel so drained.”
“Tell me about it… This army is endless.” Valkyrie sneered. “There’s got to be something I can do though…”
“Valkyrie… Unless you want to try and storm Cloud Tower and beat Icy and her sisters out of their concentration… There’s nothing we can do but fight here.” Morgan swore when she saw the look on Valkyrie’s face. “We’re not storming Cloud Tower.”
“Come on… It’s a short flight…”
“Sorry… but you’ve already had enough near death experiences for one day.” Morgan remarked, blasting back one of the smaller bug groups. “Now help me keep this sector clear, or keep your mouth shut.”
Valkyrie rolled her eyes, placing her hands on the ground. “Darkness Pulse!” The ground began to pulsate, bucking the creatures and forcing them to hit themselves.
Flora landed by Valkyrie, still shifted, but showing the signs of exhaustion. “There’s no end to this…” She leaned against Valkyrie, shooting little blasts at the creatures.
Valkyrie conjured up a barrier, a small one, but still a barrier. “Try to rest here, I’ll hold them back.”
Flora shook her head. “We can’t rest… We can’t give in….” She took a breath. “But we can’t stop them either…”
Valkyrie couldn’t lie to her… She couldn’t just say there was a way to stop them… Because in truth… There wasn’t. Not without breaking the witches’ concentration. Her mother had told her that once… Long ago.
“Fine… But if we’re going out, we’re going out fighting.” Valkyrie stood her ground. “Maybe I can summon a little help…” She closed her eyes, feeling out her powers. She was weakened and drained, but this was important…
“Creatures for which I was named, I beseech thee.” She started the invocation. “Battle maids, steel sitters, fate weavers, I call to thee. Alone, inside myself, and for my battle mates, I ask for your power. To regain, to renew, to release.” She felt the power flowing, an aura coming from her and emanating to the rest of the fairies and the Alfea staff.
“Destruction visits me, and the whirlwind awaits. But your hair is soft, wafting gently in the turmoil. Curling slightly at the ends. And as the rains come, slick and fast, hard and swift, washing away the blood. Washing away the tears. My soul is cleansed.”
“My spirit is renewed. I honor thee, Valkyries, your glimmering lights fill me with hope. Gifting my heart with the knowledge of freedom!” She ended the invocation, placing her hands on the ground. “We won’t be brought down!” She felt a surge of power come over her, and each of the fairies who had been grounded in exhaustion rose back up.
They were ready to fight again, the spirit of the true Valkyries filled them. Valkyrie gave a sigh of relief, sending a wave of dragon energy to blast through the creatures around the east hall.
Flora grinned, taking back to the skies. “How did you know that would work?” Valkyrie gave a laugh.
“I didn’t… But desperate times… Am I right?” Valkyrie gave a thumbs up. “Go find your friends. You’re stronger together… I’m going to fight with Morgan and Uncle Palladium.” Flora gave a nod, flying off with new found energy.
Valkyrie smirked at the creatures that headed for her. “Come on ugly, let’s dance.” She let her fire surge around her, creating a protective burning layer.
Cheers erupted from the students and faculty as the monsters finally stopped coming. Valkyrie fell to her hands and knees, trying to suck in air. She could barely breathe she’d been fighting so hard.
She wasn’t the only one… Several students had passed out from exhaustion and were teleported to the infirmary. Faragonda walked over to her, extending a hand. “You did well, my dear… Where did you learn such an invocation?” Valkyrie took her hand, helping herself back up.
“Mom…” She looked down. “I’m scared for her, Aunt Faragonda… I know she’s alive… I can feel that… But…”
“But she’s with them… I know.” Faragonda placed a hand on her shoulder. “Go and grab something to eat with the others… We’ll figure out where to place you after.”
“Yes, ma’am.” Valkyrie winced. “I think one of those golems got a lucky shot at me. She heard the familiar fluttering of wings.
“Valkyrie, are you okay?” Flora asked, taking Valkyrie’s hand. Valkyrie gave a smile.
“I’m tired… But I’m fine. Just a little sore. And maybe a bit bruised…” Valkyrie downplayed it. Faragonda made a noise.
“And a few cuts…?” Faragonda gestured to where one of the tentacle faced things had grabbed onto her.
“Just a few. I’m fine.” Valkyrie promised. “How’s Bloom?” Valkyrie turned to Flora. The nature fairy looked down.
“She’s safe… But she’s still feeling down about everything…” Valkyrie groaned.
“You know what…? It’s fine. Yes, she walked into a trap… But to be honest, it could have been me if they’d known about my powers. Bottom line though, moping around isn’t going to anyone any favors. She’s going to have to power through it.” Valkyrie held tight to Flora’s hand. “She has to.”
“And she will… She just needs a confidence booster.” Flora gave a smile. “Let’s go fine the others.” She turned to Ms. Faragonda. “Unless you need her?”
Faragonda gave a laugh. “Go and have some enjoyment girls. I have a feeling our reprieve won’t last long.”
If I offended anyone with the invocation that Valkyrie used, I apologize. The one I used is one that popped up in my search engine and I reworded it just a bit...
Chapter 25: Chapter Twenty-Five: Reprieve
She took a seat, listening as Saladin, Faragonda, and her Uncle Salvador tried to come up with a plan before the witches started their assault again. “If I may…?” She started. All three looked to her.
“Having insights, Val?” Salvador asked. “Because it’d be nice to know how we could beat your murderous cousins.” Valkyrie looked at Faragonda.
“When the girls were punished, you drained them of half their power, right?” Valkyrie asked. Faragonda hummed.
“I did… But what does that matter?”
“It means when Bloom went to Earth and they jumped her, she only had half her power. Which means they only took half her power. If we could figure out how to reignite her flames, she and I could use some sort of convergence spell and put this all to rest.” Valkyrie leaned back in the chair. “Unless any of you have a better idea…?”
“We could… Send Bloom back to Domino…? Let her come face to face with the source…” Saladin started.
“It’d be dangerous, but it’s not like you’d send her alone, right Faragonda?” Salvador asked. Faragonda shook her head.
“Her friends would accompany her.”
“And so would I.” Valkyrie stood. “I can help sense out the dragon with her.”
Salvador shook his head. “Absolutely not. Your mother would kill me if I let you go to Domino. Do you know how dangerous that place is? Especially for you?” Salvador asked. Valkyrie frowned.
“I have to do something.” Faragonda placed a hand on her shoulder.
“You can help my girls with their dark magic training. I have a feeling there’ll be another wave of attack, and we’ll need all the help we can get.” Valkyrie groaned.
“Fine. Fine. I won’t go to Domino.” She slumped back in the chair. “I could recruit a few fairies and storm Cloud Tower… I mean, the Company of Light had witches and I have a feeling we’ll need to start the next generation of the Company to beat those witches.”
“We’re not going to storm Cloud Tower. Not yet anyway. None of you are rested well enough for that sort of trip.” Faragonda reminded her. Valkyrie groaned.
The crystal ball on the table opened up, Icy’s figure appearing. “Good… The teachers are together and little Valkyrie is in her place.” Icy snickered. “Now here’s the thing, Profs… We have a list of demands, and unless you meet them, we’ll destroy Alfea and Red Fountain.”
“So here are our demands. We want you to lay down your arms in complete and utter surrender. Then you’re going to pledge your allegiance to us in front of your students. And then you’ll have Valkyrie surrender her portion of the Dragon Fire to us. After all, the realms aren’t big enough for four figureheads.” She cackled.
“You have five hours to decide.” She hung up the ball and Valkyrie glowered.
“I’m not surrendering to them.”
“And neither are we.” Faragonda stood and looked to Saladin. “Can your boys keep their attention long enough for Bloom and the others to get back?”
“We can try… but there are no guarantees. The Army of Darkness is so much stronger now than it was when…” Saladin stopped and looked at Valkyrie. “Than when he was the one in control of them.”
“But we’ll do our best, don’t worry about us.” Salvador gave his signature smile. “Just try to have an infirmary ready for us… And some rooms…”
Faragonda gave a nod. “I’ll see what my girls can do.” She took a breath. “Be careful, both of you.”
“Do you feel up to the task, Bloom?” Faragonda asked. Bloom gave a nod.
“We can handle Domino… Right girls?” Bloom looked to her friends. “I mean… There’s got to be a way for me to get my powers back… And if there is, I’m betting it’s on Domino.”
“We have your back, Bloom. Never doubt that.” Stella grinned. Musa turned to Valkyrie.
“Aren’t you coming too?” Musa asked. Valkyrie sighed.
“No. Domino is my opposite planet. If I go there, even while it’s in the state that it’s in, my powers will be drained much quicker, and I could potentially get really sick. Besides, someone has to stay and help watch out for Alfea.” Valkyrie gave a smile. “Just be careful, okay girls?”
Flora walked over and kissed Valkyrie softly. “You be safe too, Valkyrie. And remember to try and keep your cool.” She carefully brushed one of Valkyrie’s locks out of her face.
“Yeah, I’d hate to be the only one with a dragon anymore.” Bloom teased. Valkyrie smiled.
“Keep your humor, Bloom, you’ll need it.” She placed a hand on Bloom’s shoulder. “And remember, you’re the Princess of Domino. You’ve got this.” She gave a wink and walked out of the room, heading to find Ms. Griselda.
She was keeping watch over Alfea, a spell projecting the forest around them. “Want some company?” She asked, taking a seat.
“Nothing exciting going on here… I’m just keeping tabs on those creatures…” She sighed. “Bloom and the others need to be quick with their mission. Otherwise….”
“It’s not going to come to that, Griselda.” Valkyrie pulled her legs up to her chest. “It’s not. The witches will come as reinforcements. If I know my Mom, and I do, she and the other Cloud Tower teachers are formulating an escape plan right now.”
“Was Zarathustra okay when you left? I… I need to know.” Valkyrie gave a smile.
“She was hurling curses around, if that’s what you mean.” She teased, watching as Griselda relaxed a bit.
Faragonda had them laying out cots and blankets in the ballroom, preparing for the boys from Red Fountain to come. They’d been fighting hard, but Red Fountain had still fallen.
Valkyrie was just thrilled no one had died in that battle… “Aww… You’re making my bed for me. Though I always thought it’d be Crystal…” She heard a familiar voice joke. She grinned, turning and hugging Kota, being careful not to hurt him. His uniform had been ripped and he had bandages around his arms and legs.
“What happened to you?” She asked. He groaned, plopping down on a cot.
“One of those tentacle faced freaks grabbed me and tried to pull me in two… Totally uncool if you ask me.” He looked around. “Is… Crystal here…?” Valkyrie sighed, guilt eating at her.
“No… She’s not… She’s still trapped at Cloud Tower… But I can’t just leave because I’m needed here…” She noticed three specialists heading over to Faragonda.
“Go… I can tell you’re interested in them.” Kota teased. “Besides, I’m probably just going to lay here and try to recover. I nearly died you know.” Valkyrie chuckled a bit.
“You seem fine to me if you can make those lame ass jokes.” She teased. Cheshire walked over, rubbing against Kota. “Keep him safe me, will ya?” She asked.
“Are you talking to me or the cat?” Kota teased, stroking the cat’s fur.
“To Cheshire. He can keep you safe. You’re impulse control is about as bad as mine.” Valkyrie winked, walking over to where she saw the familiar specialists walk off with Faragonda. Whatever they were planning, she was going to be part of it.
Chapter 26: Chapter Twenty-Six: Fairy Rescue
- Fairy Rescue
Valkyrie could hear the blonde, Prince Sky, arguing about going to Domino. His friends were behind him on it, trying to convince Faragonda and Saladin to let them help out. She walked over, crossing her arms. “If they get to go, I’m going.”
Faragonda looked to Valkyrie shaking her head. “We’ve been through this, Valkyrie, it’s much too dangerous for you.”
“But we have to get the girls back… And I wouldn’t be alone.” Valkyrie looked to the boys. “Isn’t that right, Timmy?” He was the only one Flora wasn’t upset with, which means he was the only one Valkyrie wasn’t upset with.
He pushed his glasses up, trying not to stutter. “That’s right… And our ship is more than equipped enough to manage the flight to Domino…”
“We need them here in case the Trix coven attack again.” The brunette, Brandon, not Sky, argued.
Saladin sighed. “Very well…” He looked the boys and the witch over. “But Valkyrie, before you go, see about your uncle… He may know a potion or charm that will allow you to safely be on Domino.”
“Yes, Sir.” Valkyrie walked off, heading straight for the potions lab.
Morgan, Palladium, and Salvador were working on different potions for the large group of students. Some for stamina, some for strength, and some for extra energy. “Anything you guys can cook up for me to go to Domino?”
Palladium groaned. “I thought you knew the dangerous of going there…”
“She knows, but she doesn’t care… She’s a lot like my sister that way.” Salvador sighed. Morgan rolled her eyes.
“We can’t help you without permission. You know that.” Morgan reminded her. Valkyrie smirked, handing out her note from Saladin and Faragonda.
“I got permission. I just need something that’ll help me not be affected by Domino’s magic aura.” Valkyrie looked to her uncles. “Or is there anything you can do?”
Salvador sighed, pulling out a vial. “This stuff only lasts for about an hour, so don’t take it until you get there.” He handed it Valkyrie. “And be careful… Otherwise I’ll hear about it for the rest of my life from your mother.” He half teased. Valkyrie smiled, giving him a hug.
“I’ll be fine, Uncle Sal… I promise.” She hugged Palladium and Morgan too. “I don’t think we should be gone long… It’s just an extraction mission.”
“Good luck.” Morgan shook her head. “Those things never go according to plan.” Valkyrie shrugged.
“That’s why I’m going. I can be a tactician…” She winked, walking back toward the ship. The boys were starting to load up and Valkyrie rushed to grab her seat, the vial secured in her pocket.
“So Valkyrie, I heard you and Flora are pretty close…” Timmy spoke, not taking his eyes off the sky. “And Flora is close to Tecna…” Valkyrie chuckled.
“Timmy, if you really like her, just say something. Trust me on this.” She looked to Sky and Brandon. “And don’t lie to her either.”
Sky rolled his eyes. “Are you always going to harp on that? I just wanted… To be normal for once. Surely you can understand that, you’re mother is the headmistress of Cloud Tower.”
“Not to mention you’re the keeper of that Dark Dragon Fire. And it’s not like you said anything about it to the rest of us.” Brandon reminded. Valkyrie leaned back in her seat.
“My life is public record. Anyone who was part of the Company or the Council, including your daddy dearest, Prince Sky, could learn about me and who I am. I mean, it’s public knowledge that mom was in the Coven for a while. And it’s public knowledge that she and my dad, the former Dark Dragon Fire Keeper, were a thing. And when she was with the Company and found out she was pregnant, it’s not that hard to put two and two together.”
Brandon and Sky looked down. “We know we shouldn’t have lied… But still.... How were we supposed to know it’d go down like this?” Brandon asked.
“Hello, every story that involves secret identities never really end well.” Valkyrie pointed out. Timmy swallowed.
“I don’t want to panic anyone… But we have company!” He showed the rear cameras. One of the flying darkness monsters was beginning to attack, and it had buddies on top of it, trying to break into the craft.
Valkyrie got to her feet along with Brandon and Sky. “Just keep us in the air and we can handle the rest!” Sky commanded, bringing out his sword. Brandon got his own out, looking to Valkyrie.
“Think you can create a force field around the craft while Sky and I cut through them?” He asked. Valkyrie gave a smile.
“I can do more than that.” She placed her hands on the ground of the ship, concentrating as her power surrounded it, creating a shield around the craft, little sparks of fire coming off and burning the beasts when they got too close.
Brandon smiled. “You’re so my favorite witch.” He gave a look to Sky and they took off toward the rear, busting up the few monsters that had managed to get on board.
Valkyrie and Timmy kept them steady, not wanting to crash and burn. The boys came back, the crisis averted. “So… How’s that for team bonding?” Sky half-joked. Valkyrie put her shield down, laying on the floor.
“It was something… But let’s never do that again. Okay?” She groaned. “Where are we at Timmy?”
“Shouldn’t be long now… I’ll let you know when we’re about to land so you can take your potion.” Timmy assured her.
“Yeah, we don’t need to lose you in this fight… You and Bloom are our biggest threats against the witches.” Sky admitted. Valkyrie groaned, raising up.
“I don’t feel very threatening right now.” She got back to her seat. “All of this mess has me feeling sick and angry… And until I can get a chance to storm Cloud Tower… There’s nothing I can do…”
“How about this, if we get the girls back in one piece, we’ll help you break in and save the rest of the witches?” Brandon offered. “I mean… It’d be good having more power in our back up… Right?”
“Right.” Sky nodded.
“We’ll be arriving soon… Get the potion ready, Valkyrie.” Timmy reminded. Valkyrie pulled out the vial, whispering the incantation to activate the potion’s power.
She hated to drink it though, the whole thing was so bitter. She grabbed the parka Faragonda had given her and pulled it on… Domino was supposedly freezing these days.
“Get those ice crabs!” Sky commanded, slashing through a few of them. Brandon took on a small group his self, with Timmy shooting as back up.
Valkyrie placed her hands on the ground, letting a heat wave roll off of her and burn them down. They managed to stop the siege against them, taking a breath.
“So… Where should start looking?” Brandon asked, looking around. “It’s nothing but snow and ice here…” Valkyrie gave a smile, stepping in front of the boys.
“That’s where you’re wrong, Lover Boy…” She closed her eyes, feeling her flame out. “Bloom and the others are close by…” She gestured to a strange mound, one that was dull, but more colorful than the rest of the landscape. “That is the Castle of Domino… And that’s where we’ll find the girls.”
“Are you sure?” Sky asked. Valkyrie turned to face him.
“I’d stake my life on it.” Valkyrie started the walk. “Come on boys, my potion won’t last forever, and I’m not dying out here.”
They’d found the girls, all forced back by the attacking snow crabs. Valkyrie glowered when one tried to get too close to Flora and sensed out her power. “Dark Dragon’s Blast!” She called, sending an orb of dark energy to the crabs, making them explode.
Sky had saved Bloom at that time, and Timmy and Brandon made their grand entrance. “It’s so good to see you guys!” Stella called.
“It is, we thought we were c-” Tecna stopped, shrieking a bit at the window. “That yeti is still here!”
Musa glared. “I’m done with his ‘tude! Girls let’s get him!” She flew to the air, Tecna, Flora, and Stella right behind her.
Valkyrie followed, taking Flora’s hand. “We’re stronger together.” She reminded them. Tecna nodded.
“Girls, I say we try convergence.” Tecna threw her hands up. “Digital Web!” She called, trapping the monster in an orb.
Flora and Valkyrie shared a look and grasped tightly to each other’s hands, their powers surging between them. “Blasting Blossoms!”
“Flames from Within!” The two spells collided, making the blossoms detonate around the monster and the flames crawl up to burn him from within. Stella and Musa took their chance.
“Sun Power!” They called. The sun blinded the monster as the music and sound waves completely surrounded him. He burst into light, disappearing for good.
The girls cheered, making their way back to the ground. The fairies shifted, stretching a bit. “So what brings you here? I mean, I thought we were on our own?” Stella asked.
“Well… We figured you’d need assistance getting back to Magix… and… We wanted to help.” Sky flushed a bit. “And Valkyrie managed to get a potion from her uncles that would allow her to be here.”
Valkyrie leaned a bit into Flora. “Yeah, and we should head out before it starts to wear off… I’m already starting to feel drained.” She looked to Bloom. “Did you have any luck?”
“Sort of… The fire wasn’t here… But Daphne… My aunt and the nymph of the Dragon Fire… She was here and she told me to keep looking, that I’d find it soon enough.” Bloom smiled. “I just hope it’s really soon.”
“I know that’s right… Her ‘earth’ powers are great, but I don’t think they’ll be enough to take on the witches.” Musa teased. Tecna looked toward the boys.
“I still don’t understand why you’re here… I mean… I get the extraction, but shouldn’t you be defending Red Fountain?” Tecna asked. The boys looked down and away.
“Red Fountain fell… We’re all at Alfea right now…” Brandon admitted.
“Which is another reason we came to get you girls… We need all hands on deck for this.” Sky told them.
Bloom looked to the girls. “Then we can’t wait any longer. Let’s get to the ship and get back to Alfea.”
Valkyrie couldn’t help but feel a bit giddy with Flora rest on her shoulder. She loved any contact she could have with the fairy, and considering everything that was happening, this could be her last chance to enjoy it.
She ran her hand through Flora’s hair, trying to keep the fairy soothed. She was exhausted herself, the potion having worn off before they left Domino’s atmosphere. Not to mention the fights…
She could hear Brandon and Sky talking to Bloom and Stella, doing their best to apologize and smooth things over. Valkyrie couldn’t help but smile at that, hoping they’d forgive each other. After all, time was short, and getting shorter every second those witches had the Dragon Fire.
“I can feel you thinking. You should try to rest too, while you can.” Flora’s soft voice whispered. Valkyrie sighed, leaning into Flora.
“I want too… But… I can’t help but shake the feeling that something bad’s going to happen…” She kissed the top of Flora’s head, the first time she’s been able to do. “I… I’m going to have to break into Cloud Tower soon… I can’t stand not knowing how my mom and friends are… And we need their help.”
“We can worry about that when we get to Alfea…. Right now, Honey… I need you to hold me and rest.” Flora placed a hand on hers. “For me?” Valkyrie closed her eyes.
“For you.” She started to drift off, a familiar voice chuckled a bit. ‘You’re so weak.’ His voice teased. Valkyrie wanted to roll her eyes, but she knew he was just joking with her… Trying to keep her relaxed enough to rebuild on her energy…
Chapter 27: Chapter Twenty-Seven: The Siege of Alfea
- The Siege of Alfea
The Red Fountain craft landed at Alfea, with Saladin and Faragonda as the welcoming committee. “Glad to see you all made it back safely.” Faragonda gave a smile.
“Were the boys any help?” Saladin asked.
Sky rubbed the back of his head. “Actually, they sort of had it handled without us.” He gave a weak smile. “But… I guess that’s just how Alfea girls are.”
“Yeah… They were taking on snow crabs and a yeti when we arrived.” Valkyrie gave a smile to Flora and the other girls. “They should get major extra credit.”
“Valkyrie and Sky and exaggerating. They were a big help in getting us off Domino.” Stella swooned.
“Without them, we’d been toast.” Musa chuckled. Faragonda gave a nod.
“But were you successful?” She asked. Bloom looked down.
“I discovered that my aunt is the nymph of the Dragon Fire… And that she is the one who saved me from the destruction of Domino… She… left the safety of something called the Nether so she could send me to Earth…” Bloom sighed. “But I didn’t find the spark I was looking for.”
Valkyrie moved away from Flora to put an arm around Bloom. “Don’t worry, you’ll be burning bright again in no time… You’re the heir. Not them.”
A noise caused everyone to turn around. A small duck and a rabbit were being chased by a familiar looking black and white cat. Valkyrie groaned. “Cheshire! Leave them alone!” She chastised her cat, moving to scoop him up. Bloom laughed, getting her rabbit.
“Poor Kiko…” She looked to the duck. “Isn’t that Icy’s duck…?”
“It is. I brought him with me.” A familiar voice called. Stella glared.
“Girls back up! He’s dangerous!” Valkyrie let her power swirl.
“Relax girls… Everyone is here is friendly.” Saladin stood between them and Knut. “He really helped us out against the witches’ siege on Red Fountain.” Tecna hummed, looking at her scanner.
“He does raise our probability of survival.” Tecna voiced her approval.
“Fine by me.” Valkyrie grabbed Knut’s wrist. “But if you betray us to them…. It will be your greatest mistake.” She seethed. Flora took her hand.
“Sweetie… Relax. He’s only here to help.” Flora soothed her, moving her away from the ogre. Knut swallowed.
“I just want to help… I promise…” He kicked the ground a bit. “Besides… You’re the one that’s the true heir to the monsters, Valkyrie…” Valkyrie gave him a look.
“Maybe in another lifetime, Knut…” She turned to Faragonda and Saladin. “Can we talk later…? It’s important…”
Saladin nodded. “First go and rest up. And check on your uncles… I heard explosions coming from the potion’s lab.” Valkyrie gave a slight smile.
“Will do.” She and the others made their way into Alfea, hoping to find something quick to eat and maybe a place for a power nap…
“It’s a suicide mission, Valkyrie… I don’t think even you could pull it off.” Faragonda crossed her arms. “Storming Cloud Tower…? How would you even do it?”
Valkyrie kept her head high, crossing her own arms. “I know every nook and cranny of Cloud Tower and I’ve made friends with the monsters there. Breaking in would be a cinch for me and maybe a few others.” She took a breath.
“Look… We’re in a war here, and I know you’re the veterans from the Great War for Magic… But this… This will get to that level if we don’t act now. We have to recreate the Company of Light. And to do that, we need witches. My friends and my mother are trapped at Cloud Tower with those sociopaths.” Valkyrie argued.
“We have to break them out and bring them here. We’re all stronger together.” Valkyrie took a breath. “So please… Let me do this.” She bit her lip. “And if it helps… Being at Cloud Tower where Icy and her sisters are could trigger Bloom’s power to resurface…”
Saladin gave a smile. “You really are your mother’s daughter… Sounds like a plan she once came up with.”
“And one she nearly died because of.” Faragonda reminded him. Salvador frowned, stepping up.
“I think it’s a good plan, Valkyrie… But it’s not one you need to partake in. If you go to Cloud Tower, you’ll be handing those witches what they want. You and your dragon.” Salvador placed a hand on her shoulder. “I know you want to go… I want to go too… But this is something we’re too close to.”
“Agreed…. Though perhaps… Bloom could go. We do need her to refind her fire.” Wizgiz hummed. “Right?”
“Morgan could go in Valkyrie’s place… She’s somewhat familiar with the terrain.” Palladium offered.
Valkyrie glared. “I’m not afraid to go… Please. Let me help my mom.” She looked to the teachers. “Let me help my teachers. My friends.”
“It’s not about fear, Valkyrie… It’s about being placed where yer needed. And yer needed here. If those witches attack us while they’re gone… We’re gonna need ye here to fight the Army.” Codatorta spoke.
“That’s right… You’re strategies and power are needed here to help fight them off.” Griselda added. Valkyrie sighed.
“Fine…” She turned to take her leave. “But whoever goes, remind them that the dungeon monsters can be reasoned with, they just need to say my name.”
Faragonda nodded. “We will deliver that message.” Valkyrie walked out of the room, heading for where the library of Alfea stood.
She needed a quiet place… Just for a moment…
Valkyrie was sitting down behind one of the bookcases, Cheshire in her lap getting his ‘needed’ affection. She heard the door open and froze, listening to see who it was.
“I thought I’d find you here…” Flora walked over, sitting beside Valkyrie near the end bookshelf. “Morgan and Knut are leading Bloom, Stella, Brandon, and Sky to Cloud Tower… We all thought you’d be going.” Valkyrie sighed, laying her head against Flora.
“I’m the one who thought of the plan… And I did want to lead it… But I’m needed here more.” She explained, using Codatorta’s explanation. Flora played with her hair, humming a bit.
“Unhuh… Something tells me it was more like they didn’t want you to risk getting caught by Icy, Darcy, and Stormy…?” Flora speculated. Valkyrie groaned, her hands falling to her sides and away from Cheshire.
“They don’t want to risk both sets of the Dragon Fire being in the grasp of those maniacs… And I get that… But… I know Cloud Tower like the back of my hand. And I know how to use the castle to my advantage. Not even those three Ancestral wannabes know those secrets.” Valkyrie lashed out a bit.
“But I also know that fighting here will be better for the others… My Dark Dragon Fire can burn through the Army of Darkness…” She paused. “I have an idea… Can you try and summon everyone to the quad?” Flora gave a grin.
“I think I can do just that…”
Valkyrie stayed in the center, watching as specialists and fairies began to gather. One of the fairies, a girl with short brown hair shook her head. “Is there a reason you called us here, Witch?” She asked.
“I’d like to know this myself…” Faragonda asked from behind Valkyrie. She and Saladin had knowing looks on their faces as Valkyrie tried to keep her stance.
“I have an idea on how to fight back against the Army of Darkness…” She looked at the Wizards, the Fairies, and the Specialists. “We may not have witches to even things out, but we’ll work with what we have.”
“We’re listening.” Salvador gestured for her to continue. Valkyrie looked to the rest of the crowd, Musa and Kota giving her a thumbs up.
“We’ll need four main squadrons for each direction. East, North, South, and West. We’ll also need specialty forces. Your teachers know your strengths and weaknesses and you should be placed in complementary battalions to keep our success rate up.” Valkyrie started. “Most of the specialists and perhaps some of the fairies who aren’t as quick in the air should be our ground forces. Wizards and faster flying fairies, should take to the air.”
Valkyrie looked directly at what was left of the Winx Club. “And the four of us will rotate around as needed. This way, no one gets too exhausted.” She looked to the enchantix fairies and the older specialists. “We’ll be looking to you for strength if we can’t find our teachers, so try to keep up a brave face, even if it’s just for show.”
Saladin and Faragonda stepped forward. “She’s presented a great battle strategy. But as she also explained, we know who’s best equipped for what… We’ll break you up into your teams. And remember, we do not give in nor do we give up.” Faragonda told them.
“And if we go down, we’re going down fighting.” Saladin directed toward his boys. With that, the teachers began to divvy up the students and the teachers, preparing for the upcoming battle.
Flora hugged Valkyrie close, kissing her cheek. “You did wonderfully.”
“I think you may have even inspired a few of the teachers.” Tecna chuckled. Musa gave her a thumbs up.
“Maybe you should take a few heroics classes at Red Fountain.” Musa teased. Valkyrie shook her head, flushing.
“Look… I’m just trying to be helpful… I mean… I’m the only witch here and I can just feel the looks I’m getting…” She shrugged. “And I can’t blame them… Witches are making this mess… So it’s easy to blame the witch you can get access to… Me.”
She felt a familiar hand on her shoulder. “While that may be so, just remember, some of us do prefer witches being in charge.” Kota laughed. “I mean, it was that way on Rancor… Why not here too?” He half teased. Valkyrie grinned.
“I’m just glad you’re feeling better.” She playfully hit him. “And don’t worry, I have a feeling Crystal and the others will be here soon…” She bit her lip. “Assuming the others know what they’re doing.”
Kota shook his head. “I wouldn’t worry… Brand- I mean Prince Sky knows what he’s doing.”
“He’s a good leader, he just needs a push sometimes.” Timmy jumped in, walking over to the group. “I’m part of the Honor’s Brigade at the North Gate.” He looked to Kota. “And you may want to get with your group.”
Kota nodded. “See you guys later…”
Valkyrie growled, unleashing a dark aura over the school, destroying clusters of the smaller bugs in her way.
Musa and Tecna were giving air support to a brigade of specialists, combining their magic to take down the larger creatures.
Flora and several of the other nature fairies were fighting with Palladium, sending pollen based attacks toward the ground troops.
Valkyrie took a deep breath, fighting her way through until she found her Uncle Salvador. “Want a hand?” She asked, firing a few blasts of dark magic. Salvador gave a smile.
“Hit them with your best shot!” He called, preparing his own dark magic blast. An orb of purple and green energy swirled at his finger tips and Valkyrie closed her eyes, adding a touch of her own magic to it.
They sent it flying into the air, knocking the flying creatures out of the air and sending them crashing and burning into the ground. “See… This is family bonding!” Salvador chuckled, starting up another orb.
“Mom always did want us to hang out more.” Valkyrie teased, feeding more of her power toward the orb he’d created. Another shot, another wave hit and burned.
But the creatures kept coming. A full frontal assault this time. “We need some help up here!” Musa called, flying over Valkyrie’s head. A larger flying creature was chasing her and spitting some sort of acid.
Valkyrie took to the sky and grabbed Musa’s hand. “Wanna try some death metal?” She winked. Musa gave a grin.
“Never dabbled in it before, but I think now’s a great time to start.” She closed her eyes, focusing on her magic.
Valkyrie did the same, their powers mingling and connecting. “Death Metal Wave!” They yelled out in unison. Two large stereos appeared around the monster, creating a deafening song and sound waves, setting the creature and any surrounding ones on fire.
Musa cheered, flying about. “That was awesome! Wanna try it again on that ugly thing?” She gestured to another monster and its posse. Valkyrie grinned.
“Let’s give them a concert they’ll never forget!”
The monsters were gone and the sun was breaking through the dark clouds. The air support had grounded themselves, fairies and wizards all exhausted.
And the ground support were laying down on the ground, giving soft cheers at the success. Teachers were congratulating students on their survival skills and handing out water bottles and snack packets.
Valkyrie laid on the ground, steam coming off of her as she tried to cool off. Cheshire laid near her, a bit of gunk on his paws from his attempt at attacking on the monsters. Flora, Musa, and Tecna had flown down beside her, shifting back.
“So… That was intense.” Musa tried for humor.
“At least we beat that wave… Your strategy was good, though I’ve overheard Saladin and Faragonda talk about improving upon it.” Tecna spoke, deciding to lay on the ground too.
“I just hope the others are okay.” Flora whispered, taking Valkyrie’s hand.
“Just keep the hope alive… We lose that, we lose Magix.” Valkyrie reminded them, squeezing Flora’s hand. “Now… I suggest we rest while we can… I’m drained.”
“Same here…” Musa groaned, a slight thud sounding from her collapsing to the ground.
Chapter 28: Chapter Twenty-Eight: Busy Work
- Busy Work
Valkyrie paced around the halls of Alfea, Cheshire in her arms. “We could always sneak over there… Check on Morgan, Stella, and Bloom… Maybe even trash Icy and her sisters…” Valkyrie muttered to herself.
Faragonda faked a cough, bringing Valkyrie to the present. “Oh… Hey, Aunt Faragonda… How long were standing there…?” She asked, giving a nervous chuckle.
“Long enough.” The older woman sighed, placing a hand on Valkyrie’s shoulder. “I know you’re worried about your mother… To be honest, I am too.” She gave a slight chuckle.
“You know… She was one of the strongest fighters in the Company of Light? She had at least thirteen different battle strategies for one battle based on weather and location. And don’t get me started on her contingency plans.” Faragonda laughed. “Even when she didn’t have a plan she was formidable.”
Valkyrie gave a smile, a little relief settling within her. “I know. She’s taught me so much… Even about my powers…” She took a breath. “And the other teachers of Cloud Tower are way strong… Mom would never submit herself to being part of a coven she wasn’t sure of.” Faragonda grinned.
“That’s right. Zarathustra, Ediltrude, and Gilda are all formidable witches. I’ve even heard impressive things about Pandora, Eldoran, and Tanae. And I do recall Bittersmoke being quite the adversary…” Faragonda reminded Valkyrie.
“Thanks… I… I needed to remember…” She bit her lip. “I’m still worried though… About Morgan and the others…..” She set Cheshire down, the cat laying down near her feet. “I mean, she knows the passages… but she’s not as familiar with them… And the dungeon monsters are very particular about outsiders…”
Faragonda chuckled. “Morgan and Stella are strong and powerful fairies, and I’m not just saying that to bolster Alfea’s reputation… I mean it. And Bloom… When she gets her powers back, she’ll be a formidable force… Even for you.” Valkyrie grinned.
“It’d be nice having a sparring partner that I’m not afraid of burning.” Valkyrie admitted. “What about the boys…? Do you think Sky and Brandon can handle Cloud Tower? I mean, they couldn’t even handle talking to a couple of fairies.” Faragonda gave a wink.
“You’ve always been excellent at fighting and combat, Valkyrie… but how long did it take you to admit your own feelings for Flora?” Valkyrie flushed. “I saw you two at the dance… I didn’t say anything then because you weren’t hurting anyone, and I heard about your escapade to Gloomy Wood…”
“I… To be fair… I was trying not to impose my own feelings on Flora… I… I didn’t think she’d go for me… I’m a witch and… Not exactly the easiest witch to get along with.” Valkyrie looked to Faragonda.
“I hate all of this waiting… I’m getting antsy and so is he.” Valkyrie admitted. Faragonda looked to the skies, monitoring the situation.
“I can understand that… But we must be thankful for the reprieve… It gives us all a chance to rest.” She gave a smile. “And think about it… If they’re not attacking, that must mean their concentration is on something else…”
“Like the others?” Valkyrie gave a smile. Her smile faded soon, when she felt something in the air. “Do you feel that?”
“Someone’s using a teleportation spell…” Faragonda hummed. “Let’s go see if we’re receiving friends or foes.” She made her way outside, Valkyrie right behind her.
Chapter 29: Chapter Twenty-Nine: The Beginning of the End
- The Beginning of the End
Saladin, Codatorta, and several other teachers and students were around the campus quad, preparing for whatever attack was coming. Faragonda and Valkyrie watched as the sky opened up and a portal opened.
“Get ready to attack.” Codatatorta commanded his group. Valkyrie shook her head, getting in front of them.
“Don’t! It’s not what you think!” She told them. Confusion showed on their faces until Stella, Brandon, and Morgan materialized. Soon the Cloud Tower witches and teachers were on the ground, including Griffin.
Valkyrie grinned, rushing over to the group. “You’re all okay!” She couldn’t stop herself from hugging her mother, that feeling of relief hitting hard when her mother hugged back.
“You can’t keep a witch in a dungeon forever… We tend to make friends with the monsters.” Griffin reminded her, a gentle smile on her face. She turned to the other witches. “Begin to settle in, girls… And keep on your best behavior. The only feuds going on right now are between us and those Dropouts with their Army. Do I make myself clear?”
A chorus of ‘yes headmistress’ filled the air. “Good. The teachers will tell you where you need to go…” She looked to Valkyrie. “Make sure they settle in?”
Valkyrie nodded. “Of course.” She walked over to the group, giving a smile when she saw Kota and Crystal had already found each other. They were hugged close and finding comfort. A wonderful thing.
She observed as the Cloud Tower teachers helped the other witches find groups to be part of for when the next attack hit. Though one did stand out… Lucy was kicking at the ground, somewhat alone. Valkyrie walked over, extending a hand. “Feeling lost?” She asked. Lucy sighed.
“I wish… I wish I had listened to you and Mirta… About Icy and the others… I… I’m sorry.” Valkyrie gave a smile.
“Don’t worry about it. Right now, rest up and find a group… They’ll be your battalion when the next wave hits.” Lucy gave a nod, finding Euphorbia and her sisters to join with.
Valkyrie paused, feeling someone hug her. “I’m so glad my spell worked. I had no idea if I actually managed to send you here or not…” Crystal held tight. Valkyrie gave a smile.
“You managed to get me to the gate… My uncle is the one who found me. And it seems you found Riven.” She gestured to the magenta haired boy with Brandon.” She turned around. “Where’s Bloom and Sky? They were part of the group that saved you, right?”
“Red and her boyfriend kept the monsters from gaining on us… But they should’ve been able to meet us here…” Crystal crossed her arms. “Do you think they’re okay?”
Valkyrie closed her eyes. She could still feel Bloom, though it was a weak feeling. “They’re fine…” She looked to Crystal and Kota. “Come on… My squad has an opening for another witch.” She grinned.
Crystal gave a smile. “That’s great… But Kota sort of beat you to it…” Kota gave a laugh.
“She’s gonna help the Wizard’s Brigade at the south gate. We have a real ball of sunshine who could really benefit from her crystal powers.” Kota grinned. Valkyrie rolled her eyes.
“Fine. But when you tire of the boys, just look for me and the fairies.” Valkyrie winked, walking back over to where Stella and Morgan were recounting the events to Flora, Tecna, and Musa.
“They’re so mega powerful too… I’m kind of worried about our success here.” Stella was at the tail-end. Valkyrie wrapped an arm around Flora.
“Don’t worry, Princess… If we’re breathing, we can fight them.” She gestured to where the Heads of the Schools were talking. “And those three are some of the most powerful people in Magix. With the three of them together, not to mention all of us working together, it’s like a new and improved Company of Light.”
“Val’s right… We can’t worry about losing when there’s too much on the line.” Musa gave a smile. “Besides, we’re stronger together.”
“That’s right. No evil witches, no matter how overpowered, are going to stop us.” Morgan grinned. “We’re stronger willed than that.”
“And much smarter.” Tecna grinned.
“They don’t stand a chance.” Flora leaned into Valkyrie. “Not a single chance.”
Valkyrie was allowed into the meeting room as the teachers were trying to hash out attacks. “If they’re truly descendants from those hags, how did they miss Valkyrie?” Codatorta asked. Valkyrie shook her head.
“They didn’t… Miss me… Exactly. I was just better at masking my power than Bloom. I’ve been able to train with my powers and knew how to… Mostly keep them controlled… Bloom just discovered hers and her dragon was still raw from its reawakening.” Valkyrie explained. “Besides, I was more of a thorn in their side than anything.”
“I tried to keep them separated… Until Stormy just out and challenged Valkyrie.” Griffin sighed. “And witches can’t turn down a challenge without looking weak.”
Saladin groaned. “I just wish we could contact the other realms for backup.”
“I do too… If we had even just a few dozen reinforcements…” Faragonda started to say, when a screech came to their attention. Valkyrie growled.
“Show time!” She teleported out onto the quad, blasting a few monsters that were coming up from behind Morgan and Flora.
“You’ve got excellent timing!” Morgan laughed. Valkyrie gave a wink.
“Just hurry up and shift. I’ll cover you.” Valkyrie spread her arms, forming a protective barrier.
The monsters banged at her shield, but were no match for Stella and Musa’s double team. “Those things are seriously gross!” Stella shrieked.
Flora and Morgan took the skies with them, wings fluttering fast. “Now’s not the time to worry about that Stella.” Musa reminded, blasting a few of the flying creatures to the ground.
Valkyrie glared, feeling and pulling her negative energy together to blast back the creatures within a ten foot radius. “These things are beginning to piss me off.” She growled, watching as they began forming a larger monster.
Morgan and Flora clasped hands, casting a spell to bring a large plant to the surface, one able to swallow the creature whole. “Maybe that’ll be the end of it.” Morgan swore. “Spoke too soon…” The creatures came back up from the ground, angrier and multiplied.
Green energy blasts sent them packing and Musa grinned. “Gettem’ Tecna!” The violet haired fairy gave a wink and sent another blast.
“That’s for messing with my friends.” Tecna managed to yell out.
The monsters kept coming… Witches, wizards, specialists, and fairies… All three schools were together and fighting as hard as they could… But the monsters kept coming.
They were exhausted, the monsters kept coming and were refusing to let up. “Girls! Listen up! Combine your powers!” Faragonda and Griffin both yelled out.
“Wizards, join in the attack!” Saladin chimed in.
Valkyrie closed her eyes, feeling her inner fire and her negativity leave into the force they were creating. She felt her hands being grabbed. Flora and Morgan. She felt their energy surround hers and then more… More and more power was brought into the fold.
A flash of blinding light and it was over. Fairies were exhausted and forced into their human forms, witches were on their knees trying to catch their breaths. Valkyrie gave a tired smile. “We did it!”
Cheers erupted from the crowd, the specialists holding their weapons high. “We won!” “Those witches thought they had us!” “Alfea still stands!”
Flora leaned and Morgan were laying half on Valkyrie, trying to catch their breaths. “Do you think really it’s over?” Morgan asked, voice cracking.
Valkyrie closed her eyes… ‘Don’t even entertain that thought. They’re just as blood thirsty as their ancestors.’ A voice called to her. Valkyrie groaned, raising up and leaning into Flora.
“I don’t think it’s the end of it…. But it is a reprieve.” Valkyrie told them. Flora sighed.
“I just hope Bloom makes it back soon… We could really use her help.” She took Valkyrie’s hand. “You’re strong on your own, Valkyrie… But…”
“Two is better than one. I know.” Valkyrie stretched a bit. “I know.”
Chapter 30: Chapter Thirty: Waiting and Wondering
- Waiting and Wondering
Valkyrie tried to relax with Cheshire, waiting at the steps of Alfea’s grand entrance. “This is starting to drive me crazy… Like so much crazier than being in the dungeons…” Crystal complained, coming to sit by Valkyrie, Patches at her side.
“Tell me about it… But there’s nothing we can do. Unless I tried to storm Cloud Tower, but I have my doubts of them even being there at this point.” Valkyrie frowned. “The Ancestral Witches got their hands dirty when they fought on Domino, actually making an appearance and wrecking the grand palace… So why wouldn’t their descendants do something similar?”
“Maybe they’re smarter than their grandmothers? I mean, going to Domino is what got them killed, right? So maybe Icy and her sisters wouldn’t risk the same thing happening to them?” Crystal tried, scratching her cat’s head. Valkyrie pulled her legs to her chest.
“Maybe…” She gave a slight smile. “Where’s Kota? With his brigade?” Crystal groaned.
“He and some of the other wizards are doing patrol around the main gates… Your uncle, Salvador, is leading them.” Crystal sighed. “But I guess they haven’t discovered anything yet…” She looked to Valkyrie. “Where’s Flora and her friends? Don’t they normally hang around you?” Crystal teased.
“Flora and Morgan are trying another tactic to bring Mirta back from the brink…” Valkyrie sighed. “I don’t know how it’ll work… But we do need more hands on deck. As for the other Winx girls? I have no idea…”
She felt a familiar fire well up inside of her, a warmth that had once been gone. ‘She lives again.’ Her dragon chuckled. Valkyrie stood, placing a hand on Crystal’s shoulder. “Where are the Heads?”
“I think inside trying to contact Magix again… Why?” Valkyrie shook her head.
“I don’t know what’s going on… But I have this feeling about Bloom and I need to tell them…” Crystal gave a nod.
“Go. I’ll hang with the cats.” She paused. “What should I say if your girlfriend or cousin come looking for you?”
“That I’m with my mom.” Valkyrie made her way into Alfea, searching the halls for the schools’ headmasters. This was far too important not to tell.
They were hashing out some sort of plan, with her mother at the head. “I’m telling you, if we can get the nature based wizards, witches, and fairies together, they can summon rot eaters and get rid of the ground soldiers.” Griffin argued.
“That may be so, but we need to keep complementary powers together in all sectors to keep any one side from being overwhelmed.” Saladin countered.
“Or we could add fast flying fairies as air support for the naturals…” Faragonda tried to offer a compromise.
“Or we could hold out hope for Bloom.” Valkyrie voiced. Three heads turned to face her. Griffin gave a sigh.
“Valkyrie… I know it’s hard to face facts… But the likelihood that Bloom and Prince Sky survived is becoming more and more abysmal. Don’t get me wrong, Bloom is just as feisty as her mother once was, and perhaps even as bull-headed as her father, but strong-wills can break.” Griffin reasoned.
Valkyrie shook her head. “I hate saying it, but you’re wrong.” She looked to Saladin and Faragonda. “If Bloom were completely gone, the only other Dragon Fire I’d feel is that coated up version the Trix coven has. But it’s not.” Valkyrie gave a smile. “Don’t ask me how I know, but I just know that Bloom is alive and has her power back.”
“Are you sure?” Faragonda asked.
“There’s no doubt. My Flame is the Dark Flame. The Flame of Death and Mourning. But’s Bloom’s? It’s the Flame of Life and Warmth. And I can feel that warmth still in Magix. We just have to keep the witches busy enough for Bloom to get her pixie ass back here.”
“Language.” Griffin warned, though it was half in jest. Saladin took a breath.
“If Bloom is alive… Then Sky is too.” He looked to Valkyrie. “How good is your astral projection?” Saladin asked. Valkyrie pushed her glasses back up.
“I’m… Not sure if that’s the best idea… Not with Icy and her sisters still having a portion of the Dragon Fire. And not when they could attack at any moment.” Valkyrie swallowed. “But I don’t need to astral project to know my feelings are right. I have thousands of years’ worth of memories of that specific type of warmth… There’s no mistaking Bloom and her dragon for anyone.”
Griffin gave a slight smile. “Your father was always sure of where Marion was too… It was one of the more… Useful qualities… And annoying when trying to plan out an attack because it worked both ways…”
Valkyrie was about to say something when Kota rushed in. “Professors… There are two undines outside… They’ve got some news about the witches.”
Griffin, Faragonda, and Saladin rose up, heading outside. Valkyrie followed, not wanting to miss anything.
The Undines seemed nervous, floating around, fidgeting. “Ms. Faragonda… We have some troubling news… The Army of Darkness is taking the Invisible Road.” One of them spoke. Faragonda glared.
“So they’re going to try a sneak attack…? That’ll never do…” She looked to Griffin and Saladin. “Get the students ready.”
“But Ms. Faragonda… That’s not all… The witches are leading the charge.” Valkyrie glowered.
“Icy, Darcy, and Stormy are coming here?” She gave a smirk. “Great.” She looked to the teachers. “I’ll wipe them out just like they did the people of Obsidian.”
“Valkyrie… You’ll go where you’re needed. We can’t afford to lose you too.” Griffin chided.
Faragonda looked to the Undines. “Go inside and rest. We’ll make sure you get home safely.” She assured the small nymphs as they flew inside. She stepped up and clapped her hands loudly.
“Fairies, witches, wizards, and heroes… This is not a drill. The final battle is upon us and we will not be taken down.” Faragonda called. “To your stations!”
Valkyrie walked over to where Flora, Tecna, Musa, Morgan,and Stella were, grinning at a familiar face. “Mirta! Long time, no see!” She grinned, giving a quick hug. “You up for the fight?”
“I’m more than ready!” Mirta grinned. “After all, I’m surrounded by friends.”
“That’s right, Dear. You are.” Flora grinned, going to take Valkyrie’s hand.
“I just wish Bloom were here… You know?” Stella swallowed. “I’m worried.” Valkyrie gave a smile.
“Don’t be… I have this feeling, and by me, I mean my dragon, that Bloom is fine and just as powerful as ever.” Valkyrie kissed Flora’s cheek. “And that means she won’t be gone much longer.”
“Those witches won’t know what hit them.” Musa grinned. Morgan had already shifted and was taking to the air.
“I’m going to find my dads… Our magic is stronger in a group.” She looked at Valkyrie. “Try not to do anything stupid and impulsive, Cousin, I’d hate to lose you.” Valkyrie gave a wink.
“I’m not going anywhere.” She looked to the Winx girls and Mirta. “This fight will end with us on top. I can feel it.”
“So can I.” Tecna agreed. Stella grinned.
“We’re never going to give in to those hags.”
“And we’ll go down swinging.” Musa nodded. “I bet I’ll make a new fight song out of this encounter.”
Flora chuckled. “That’s the spirit, Musa.”
Chapter 31: Chapter Thirty-One: Drastic Times
- Drastic Times
The storms began to pick up, the ground quaking. “They’re here!” One of the Red Fountain scouts shouted.
Monsters from the sky swooped down and attacked as the Trix sisters cackled. “Welcome your new Headmistress, pixies, Stormy!” Icy cackled. Valkyrie glared, but kept her place.
She was going to fight the monsters… Just the monsters. She’d promised her family she wouldn’t impulsively attack them. “Bow down! You can’t win, we have the Dragon Fire!” Darcy crowed.
Valkyrie’s anger rose, but waned quickly when she felt a familiar warmth. “That’s not the Dragon Fire! This is the Dragon Fire!” A familiar voice called. A bright red and orange dragon attacked the witches, sending them flying back.
Their monsters began to attack and Valkyrie fired into the fray. “Do you want some help?” Flora asked. Valkyrie flashed her a smile.
“Flora, go fight with your friends… Bloom’s got Icy and you four have Darcy and Stormy… I have no doubts you’ll be fine.” Flora kissed her softly.
“Be safe.” She spoke, taking to the air and firing a blast at Stormy. “Still think this is a cheap trick!?”
Valkyrie gave a smirk before heading back into the fray, using her powers to keep the monsters back from the ground force.
It wasn’t making any sense. Stormy and Darcy were beaten, trapped within a dungeon spell and Icy was getting tossed around by Bloom…
But the monsters were still coming, unable to let up. Valkyrie groaned, getting tossed to the ground near her mother. “Valkyrie!” She felt her mother helping her up. “Are you okay?”
Valkyrie glowered, getting to her feet. “I’m tired. That’s all.” She felt her body heating up. ‘We are the true heirs of Obsidian. These are our soldiers. Reclaim them.’ A voice spoke.
Everything seemed to fade away from her as she took to the sky, dodging blasts from both sides as she got to the highest point of Alfea.
There was so much dark magic in the air, and it was perfect. Almost like home. ‘Like Obsidian.’. She brought the negative energy to her, stoking the fire within. Her aura shifted, a dragon of darkness coiling around her.
“Army of Darkness, here my roar!” She growled out, the dragon becoming larger and larger the more power she drew. “I am the true heir to Obsidian. I have the Dark Dragon Fire! Those three are imposters hiding behind the powers of their worthless ancestors!” She called out, the words just flowing from her.
“I am your heir! I am your commander! I’m the one you have sworn to obey! I am the one who commanded you centuries ago and who will continue to command you!” She felt the flames closing in, her dragon’s wings beginning to unfurl.
The army seemed to stop, listening to her words. “You’ve served your purpose! Now you’ll go back to Oblivion!” She raised her hands up, the dragon unfurling and surrounding the army, the body of the dragon burning them back into rot.
Her energy was drained as the army dissipated, the sun coming out from the storm clouds for the first time in days. She couldn’t stand, her legs giving out… And she was falling, falling fast…
“Now that was some major dark magic.” She heard a familiar voice swoon. Crystal. Valkyrie gave a weak smile as she opened her eyes. She was safely on the ground, Flora and Morgan at her sides, the Winx girls, including Bloom, around her.
“Yeah… You and Bloom totally kicked butt out there.” Stella cheered.
“Are you feeling alright?” Flora asked. Valkyrie gave a smile.
“I’m fine…” She rose to her feet, noticing the Heads had been watching, waiting, Faragonda seeming to be holding her mother back. She turned her gaze to where Icy and her sisters were tied with anti-magic cuffs and walked over to them. “I’m going to make sure you three can never do that again.” She growled.
Her magic was weakened, but she could pull off one or two more spells. She waved her hands, forcing their Whisperian Crystals to come out of the Nether, and then she shattered them.
“How dare you?!” Icy growled.
“Who do you think you are?” Darcy sneered. Valkyrie crouched to be eye level with them.
“I am the true heir to Obsidian, just as Bloom is the heir to Domino. And the three of you will never use those damned crystals to hurt anyone again.” She glowered. “And you’re lucky that the Heads have plans for you, otherwise, I’d end you here and now, just as your ancestors were once ended.” Valkyrie stood, walking back over to Flora.
Flora hugged her tight, still fawning over her from the fall. The authorities didn’t take long to arrive, taking the witches off to Light Rock Lake.
“I can’t believe it’s over…” Musa grinned.
“I know… It’s amazing.” Stella grinned. “And feel that wonderful sunshine.”
“I think it’s something we’ve all missed.” Tecna leaned against Timmy. “Though now I believe we’re going to need to begin clean-up.”
Bloom groaned. “Great… Clean-up.” Valkyrie gave a slight smile.
“Least it’s not the whole castle, right Crystal?” The taller witch shook her head.
“That’s going to be a pain in the ass to clean…”
Chapter 32: Chapter Thirty-Two: Victory in the Air
- Victory in the Air
It was fun being allowed to go to the dance at Alfea. Several witches seemed to have made friends with some of the fairies and heroes and were having a great time.
Crystal had already found Kota and they were dancing away, closer to each other than ever before. Morgan and one of the specialists were having a dance of their own, a sweet little fast number. Even Griselda and Zarathustra were sharing a dance, causing some of the other teachers to tease them
Valkyrie noted Stella and Brandon dancing in the crowd, and Musa trying to convince Riven to sing with her. Tecna and Timmy were playing some sort of game on their device… But Flora… was nowhere to be seen.
“There you are… I’ve been looking all over for you.” She felt a hand on her shoulder and turned, grinning when she saw Flora. The fairy was in a green two piece decorated in pink flowers, her hair flowing about. A sort of a lace skirt was around her waist. “I was worried you were still… Tired from earlier.”
Valkyrie smiled, taking Flora’s hand in hers. “I’m never too tired to visit.” She leaned up to kiss the fairy, keeping her hands in Flora’s. “You look amazing, by the way.”
“And so do you… I think the suit does you justice.” Valkyrie flushed a bit, thrilled that Flora liked what she was wearing.
It was a simple suit… A short-sleeved navy dress shirt with grey and white stripped vest. Her dress pants were the same color of her vest, and dark dress shoes. Her hair had grown out a bit during the ordeal and came to just below her shoulders, but she had some of it pulled back in a pony-tail.
“Thank you.” She smiled at the song. “Would you care to dance?” She bowed to Flora.
“I’d love to.” They went to the dance floor of the quad, hand in hand….
Flora had brought her over to where the other Winx girls and their boyfriends were hanging out, a table just on the outskirts of the quad, near the teachers’ table.
“I think we should toast to next year, I heard it’s going to be so much better than this year.” Bloom grinned, holding up her glass of punch. Valkyrie smiled.
“Here, here.” She held hers up. A chorus of “to next year” rang out.
“And I think we should shout out to Bloom and Valkyrie! Your dragons totally saved us.” Musa raised her glass. Bloom and Valkyrie flushed.
“We were just doing what we had to do…” Bloom tried to divert the attention.
“Yeah… Our dragons are just good at synchronizing.” Valkyrie smiled. Brandon looked to Valkyrie.
“What you said earlier, to those witches… Would you really have… Killed them… If the Heads hadn’t already gotten the authorities?” Brandon asked. Valkyrie shrugged.
“Who knows…? Sometimes when I say things, it’s not me saying them…” Valkyrie took a sip of her punch. Bloom paled a little.
“Will… That happen to me? I mean… Will she take control?” Bloom asked.
Valkyrie thought for a moment, tapping her fingers. “It’s a possibility… We’re the keepers of the Dragon Fires, Bloom… It’s not just a power… It’s… Another soul merged into your own. So yeah… You may have memories flash through you that came from another Dragon Fire keeper. Or a memory from the Dragon herself.” Valkyrie explained.
“I mean… When I first fought them at Cloud Tower, before Crystal teleported me here… I kept having memory flashes from when their ancestors murdered my dragon and how they attacked and destroyed Obsidian before they took it over.” Bloom swallowed.
“Then those dreams I’ve had all year, could have been my dragon trying to communicate with me…?” Valkyrie nodded.
Musa hummed. “That’s heavy… But at least you know some of what you’re capable of Bloom.” Musa tried to cheer her up.
“If you want, I could try to help you out over summer? Teach you more about what you can do…?” Valkyrie offered.
“I think it’s something I should explore myself… But I will definitely call you if have questions.” Bloom grinned.
The songs changed again, and the boys grabbed their girls. “Come on… Let’s start back to dancing!”
Valkyrie laughed, taking Flora’s hand. “Would you like to?”
“I’d love to.” Flora grinned, leading Valkyrie to where the others were slow dancing. Even Tecna and Timmy were twirling around one another.
Valkyrie smiled, laying out in the clearing of Gloomy Wood Forest, Flora resting with her head on her chest. “I never really noticed the constellations before…” Flora admitted. Valkyrie kissed the top of her head, pointing her fingers up.
“That cluster over there is the Dryad… That’s your sign… Right?” Valkyrie asked. Flora giggled.
“It is… And… Aren’t those over there the Elemental?” Flora gestured to a group of stars to the left.
“That’s them… My sign.” Valkyrie grinned. “You’re getting better.” Flora hummed, nuzzling close.
“I’m just curious of how you learned astronomy…” Flora admitted. Valkyrie placed an arm around Flora, holding her close.
“My mother won’t admit it to anyone, but she loves stargazing… She taught me everything about it… And she says her dad taught her.” Valkyrie sighed, a bit dreamily. “No one realizes the beauty of the night sky in Magix… They’re too involved with the twin suns.”
“I always found stars romantic…” Flora rose up, kissing Valkyrie softly. “Come on, we should head back to the party before everyone starts looking for us.” She stood, helping Valkyrie up.
“I guess… But I mean, we already have a reputation.” She teased. Flora chuckled, pushing Valkyrie’s hair back.
“Are you going to keep it this length? It’s not too long and it does seem to suit you.” Flora played with her hair. Valkyrie leaned into the touch.
“I guess I could.” She winked. “But if it starts becoming a hassle, I’m going back to my neck length.” She teased. Flora laced their hands together.
“You are going to come over some during the summer? Right?” Flora asked as they walked. Valkyrie smiled.
“If you come over to Rancor some too… I have some amazing places to show you. Like Jinxes and the Dread Forest. Don’t worry about the titles, they’re not as bad as they sound.” Valkyrie babbled. Flora giggled.
“And I can show you the giant ladybugs and how to leaf surf.” Flora squeezed her hand. “And then next year… Maybe we’ll get to see each other more?”
“Yeah… And hopefully next year, we won’t be in danger of dying.” Valkyrie groaned. “I don’t think I have it in me for another war.” Flora giggled, kissing her cheek.
“I don’t think that’s something we’ll have to worry about, Honey… Icy, Darcy, and Stormy are long gone.” Valkyrie shrugged.
“True… Let’s just hope they stay gone.”