She had led him through to the village, her home she had said. It was a simple town, if Nick could even call it that. The area was nothing like what he was used to. Nothing was. The closest he could compare it to would be the Victorian homes back in his times he saw other celebrities restore sometimes just because they could. Here, that was the style the homes were built in, the norm of the area. The walk there had been long, arduous. Through a dark woods where the trees had been of forest green and bright blue similar to the little tree by the tombstone. Bright green speckles had glittered in the air, and Tawny had had to explain to him how the flowers’ pollen was visible when it was released in the air throughout the year. It gave a magical aura to an already mystical place. Here the village was in a clearing, away from the dark forests. The houses were smaller than any Victorian homes he’d seen, but there was the style all the same. Further in you could see their market place. Large stands were there as people tried to sell their wares from their handmade carts and little shopping tables. It was similar to a flea market revitalized on a much larger level. The sight of it all was so hard to take and yet felt so right at the same time. It confused him, made him want to resent it all. Instead he just took a breath and follow, for he had no real idea of what else he could do.
Yet what had really gotten Nick were the residents. There were humans of course, dressed similar to the style Tawny had worn. Loose scarves, clothing that moved with the body as it walked almost in a dance type motion. There were the faeries he had spotted earlier, some shopped, some played around within the air, while others sat upon shoulders of other beings, likely friends, as they strolled about. Then there were the others, the ones he guessed were other intelligent beings, but were beyond what he had ever seen. There were fawns, beings with calf legs, human torso and fawn ears. Oh and of course a tail, which Nick saw swing behind in step with their walk. There were girls with sea blue hair, scales along her arms, and played with water they controlled within their own hair as their violet eyes glowed with power similar to the way Tawny’s had earlier. There were centaurs, men who were half horse with a human torso, and ram styled horns that sprouted from their head. All of them walked along, shopped, conversed, and mingled as all was normal. However to Nick, this was very far from normality. Normality had flown out the window the moment he passed out at the concert.
Tawny chuckled at his amazement. It was interesting seeing her only home through another’s eyes, eyes that never witnessed any of what she took be a normal and daily thing. “You okay?”
“Yeah…” The voice was distracted, distant because of all that was around them in the busy town center.
“Welcome to the town of Tylwyth Teg, my home. This area has been blessed so we are relatively safe for now. As safe as these times will let us be.“ A sigh came, tired and worn. “But not for long cause my gifts aren’t as strong as they once were regretfully. However, my place is a safe hold the Cyhyraeth do not know of, and neither does the Night Walker.”
“A nickname given to the one who has caused all our suffering, the one who created the Cyhyraeth.”
“What’s he really called?” Was Nick truly willing to accept this so quickly? He wasn’t sure. It was all beyond him truly.
“The name has been long forgotten, by the people.”
A lie. A simple one, but it had to be said. Nick wasn’t ready for the story yet. She was able to sense that, it was written all over his beautiful foreign aura that danced around in the pale sunlight. It was bright, it shone, and it was beautiful with life; a strong life that Nick possessed within. For that was really all an aura was, a mirror reflection of the being who owned it. The true nature shone through an aura with an expression of combined, swirling, rainbow resembling lights. His happened to be a mix of dark greens and turquoise blues. It danced though; the way it did, and the brightness with which is shone, was beyond any she’d seen before. Any except for a few old friends. Friends who were gone however, and now Nick’s uniqueness belonged to him alone.
She could not see her own aura, that was the curse and gift. Able to see others but never one’s own, for sometimes an aura could be almost prophetic and one should never know one’s own future. So she could read bits of Nick’s but never her own. The two made their way to a larger building a ways from the town’s center. It was built and styled to what Nick would say an old Christian church, like those he used to see back in Europe during tutor sessions that bored him. Most were from the crusades, he thought anyway. He never paid enough attention to actually remember. They were of stone with tall Greek archetype columns.
The carvings were what stood out, for those were different from anything he’d ever seen before. They were intricate as typical of any ancient religious house of worship. What he didn’t expect was for her to step towards it, up the stairs and into the larger slightly out of place building. What else could he do except shrug and follow?
“This is my home Nick, feel at peace.” Nick raised a brow, taking that to mean ‘make yourself at home’.
As it felt however, he did feel peaceful. A feeling he only knew to really be on the tour bus. Due to his life of fame, fortune, of being a rockstar, most of his time was traveling. As a result he felt more at home on a tour bus than at his actual house. There, at Tawny’s own residence, he had realized that it gave him that same contentment. The interior was more like the rest of the town, simplified with furniture designed for comfort while still holding classic beauty of items from the Victorian era of his own world. Symbols of what he assumed to be protection were upon the floor. The light filtered through the windows, speckles danced within the pale red light.
“So tell me your story.”
He stared at her. “My story?”
“All beings have a story, you are obviously not of here, that I knew even before setting my eyes upon you. I am curious to hear your own tale.” A small faerie flittered upon her shoulder and Tawny expressed a genuine smile to Nick for the first time since he saw her, and it was simple yet beautiful. The faye was a pale blue, with golden locks and lavender eyes, the clothing was a simple dress of spring green. She smirked at Nick as Tawny chuckled.
“Alright, alright…I see you.”
“Who’s the Tinkerbelle wannabe?”
An angry expression crossed the faye’s face as she flew around Nick’s head and spread dust all around his face. He coughed with annoyance about to ask what was that when all that escaped his throat was a frog’s croak. Tawny covered her mouth, a laugh tried to escape for the first time…in well far longer than most could imagine. She didn’t want to think of exactly how long it had been. As he tried to ask what was going on, all that would be vocalized were very loud, very angry, croaks and ribbits of what sounded to Nick like a frog on steroids. “She doesn’t like being compared to Tinkerbelle. Now Gwyllion undo that!”
The fae pouted but did as she was told. Nick sneezed at the abundant power before growling angrily. “What the hell was that shit?!”
“Gwyn does have a short temper, most faeries do, their small bodies can’t handle too much emotion at once. Gwyn, this is Nick, now be nice.”
He glanced at the faerie. “Whatever.” That was when Nick realized yet again what he was doing. He was twenty years old, he was trapped in some other world, and he was having a spat with a faerie. Faeries were always make believe, or so he thought. He was either in some really crazy place, or Nick knew he had to be in some delusion which definitely qualified him as certifiably crazy. He didn’t want to admit how afraid he was of the second one.
Tawny turned her gaze upon her as her finger twirled around it an auburn curl. “So, you were about to tell us your story?” The small creature once again got comfy upon the young woman’s shoulder. She went into her kitchen, grabbing a pair of cups that were made of a light blue diamond glass. She used a small pump within the kitchen to give them fresh well water and sat at the table across from them. He took a sip and glanced at it with surprise, never had water felt so refreshing and vitalizing. “I would love to hear it.”
“Shit…where the hell do I start?”
She just gave an impish grin. “How about at the beginning?”
The walls were stark white, sterile, and cold. Footsteps could be heard within the hallways. Not much more noise was audible by their ears. The only other noise were the steady beeps of the machines around them. Their eyes were focused upon one destination, one area. No words were said, no one really moved much as four men gazed upon the fifth of their group. His blonde hair was matted to his forehead, the ocean eyes that danced with so much light weren’t visible beyond the eyelids that seemed to be sealed shut. His breathing was steady and shallow. Other than the gentle rise and lowering of his chest he didn’t move. There Nick lay, within Orlando General, as Brian, AJ, Howie, and Kevin sat in the room beside him.
The doctors hadn’t known what to make of the fallen popstar. By all physical evidence there should have been no reason as to why he never awoke after passing out at the concert days before. When they had to end the concert, they did everything to wake him up, and nothing had worked. They took him immediately to the hospital and have been there since. They knew they had to call his parents, his family but all had the instinct not to do so just yet. Because there seemed to be no cause, they were running tests to check for any drugs in his system for lack or another answer. Once the doctors and nurses finished their usual rounds, the four finally began to discuss what happened.
“What now?” Brian asked, with a nervous pace around the room.
“I think it’s time.”
“Time? Shit it can’t be Kev, it’s too damn early.” To the rare random people who happened to walk by, it sounded like they were still debating to call Nick’s parents. Another decision they had been fighting over.
“It had said it would be him that decided when.”
AJ smirked as he rubbed his eyes. “And I always called that a crock of shit D.”
“I’ll check his shoulder.” Unknowingly to Nick, when he had gotten that tattoo of the sun with Chinese marks within, he was actually recreating a modernized version of an ancient mark. It was then all the dreams began for him, even if he didn’t realize it. Now, Kevin, Howie, Brian, and AJ, who had all been guarding him so carefully within this world, living on as regular powerless humans, they had to take on their former roles once more. And as he thought, the tattoo glowed brightly but only to trained eyes not of that realm, confirming the inevitable. This world may have made the known by all but not for the true self, they could not forget the duty they had bound themselves to twenty years before.
“We’ll have to break the barrier and go to him.”
Brian glanced at Kevin, who in actuality was his brother not his cousin back in Fylgiar. It had been weird creating the life of a performer in the Daoine realm, upon Earth, but it had suited them and provided their needs and a way to guard over Nick well. “Can we do so? Our powers aren’t as unlimited as they once were, and it took five of us to do it last time.”
“Nick is our connector, making the break easier. Besides, we have no choice.”