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The Storm of a Hundred Years

Chapter 1

“The hardest thing  you will ever do, my dear, is to grieve someone who is not dead. And I should know.” Zinnia glanced up at the older lady again. She was that sort of simple pretty, with caramel-brown hair and startling grey eyes. Gray eyes that looked like Zinnia’s, caramel-brown hair like Zinnia’s.

“Zinnia, you must believe me! Find out about the storm, please. And remember what I told you.”

“Zinnia, older Zinnia, tell me what you mean. Isn’t it better just to prepare me?” She studied Zinnia for a long time before shaking her head.
“No. You musn’t know. It might change the past- future for you- and that’s not good. Goodbye, my time is up.” She hurried back to the slim white pod, zooming away. Time travel, who knew it was possible? Future me thinks- knows– it is. She did say to research the storm. Zinnia  glanced up at the sky. It had been storming for a hundred years now, or longer. No one knew why, only Mysgale would have any idea, and he was wrong in the head. Zinnia knew she would have to take  a trip to the library in order to research the storm. Maybe Arion will come with. Zinnia took off at a run, dodging and ducking through the streets. Finally she arrived at Arion’s door and knocked quite loudly.

“Ari! It’s Zinnia!”

“Coming!” His feet could be heard from the doorway, pounding on the boards as he raced to the door.

“Zin!” The door sprung open and Zinnia stepped inside.

“Hey, Ari can you come to the library today?” She ran her fingers over the carved table and traced the swirls on the wall.
“Sure. I’m free for the rest of the day, but why?” Arion grabbed his boots while Zinnia explained.
“Okay, okay, time travel? But I’m not protesting, Zin!” Laughing, he pulled Zinnia outside with an umbrella. They walked arm in arm, squished under his red umbrella, all the way to the castle library. Once, there a door keeper let them in.

“And what may I do for you, M’lady, sir?”

“Oh, nothing. We’ll do it ourselves.” As soon as the door keeper walked away, Arion turned to the shelves.

“S, or H for hundred?” Arion frowned and Zinnia turned to the sorting wands with a grin.

“Or a sorting wand?” Arion returned her grin and picked up a wand.
“Search, search for the storm of a hundred years.” The familiar blue sparkles shot out and they leaned back to wait. A while back Zinnia and Arion had volunteered frequently at the library, so they knew how to book search efficiently. Eventually the wand’s sparkles zoomed back with books. There was a lot, Arion counted while Zinnia sorted them. Half for Arion, half for Zinnia.

“Twenty. And lots of ones at the downtown library. But those ones aren’t as accurate as  the castle library, correct Zin?”

“Yes, this library’s a million times better. But only because you’re father runs the place… Ari. Now get to work, ten for you!” She shoved a stack at him and selected the book on top of her stack. About six books later, they looked up at each other.

“This isn’t getting us anywhere, is it?”

“No.” Sighing, Zinnia pushed away the books. “Anything else you can think of?” She grabbed the sorting wand and sent all the books back to the correct shelves. Without warning the door keeper springed up next to them.

“My dear sir Arion, have you found what you need?”

“No. We are looking for information on the storm.” Slowly, Arion stood and stretched.

“Well, may I suggest Mysgale?” Frowning, Zinnia turned to Arion. Arion shrugged, as if to say sure, and she smiled. Together, they exited the library under his red umbrella and hurried up to Mysgale’s house. His tower house stood on top of a hill, near the center of the island. When they arrived Arion knocked sharply on the door.

“Open the door and head right in, unless you are the island officials. In that case please exit immediately, as I am preoccupied with important matters.” With a shrug Arion opened the door and they walked in. There was nobody to be seem and Zinnia looked around carefully. There were three doors off to the side, a spiral staircase up to the observation deck, and the room was cluttered with book shelves, old papers, plus small magical items.

“Mysgale sir? The storm, we thought you might know about it. Perhaps you could tell us?” Zinnia folded in the umbrella and peered around the room.

“The storm!” A old man shot up from the purple easy chair in the corner, surprising both Zinnia and Arion. He whirled to face them and his blue robes swirled around him, shedding magical herbs all over the floor.

“Oh dear, oh dear me. What a mess!” Mysgale quickly waved his wand over the herbs and they swooshed back into his pockets. “Now, the storm you say? You want to know about the storm? Well, you have come to the right place. Make yourself comfortable!” They gingerly lowered themselves into the couch that slid out of an alcove, and Mysgale plopped himself into the same purple chair.

“Now, who are you, and what did you want again?” Arion frowned and opened his mouth, but Mysgale interrupted. “Wait, I remember now. The storm. Always the storm. But who are you?”
“I’m Arion Laster, and this is Zinnia.” Mysgale nodded energetically and pointed to the stairs.

“I’m Mysgale and these are the stairs to my observation deck. Care to take a look? No? Oh well, another day. Anyway, the storm. Yes, yes. You probably don’t know this, because you are from the sixth generation. But the storm was made to keep the Isra out. Isra are bad bad people, Arion, Zinnia.”

“Wait,” Arion tapped the old wizard gently “who are the Isra?”
“You don’t know? Wait, who are you? Oh yes, Arion and Zinnia, Arion and Zinnia. The Isra are a group of non-humans who wander and command the uninhabitable south. The rules clearly state that the Isra control the southern lands, the humans the northern islands. But once, long ago, the Isra broke the rules and took over a border island. They took over island after island.” Mysgale paused and shuttered, covering his eyes. “Ah, that was a bad time.”

“Mysgale sir, why did they attack?”

“Why did who attack? Oh, the Isra? No one knows. But a group of wizards swore to protect every human, and transplanted a whole lot of us to this island- Chehia.” Arion gasped and hurriedly interrupted.

“Sorry to interupt, but are you part of the wizard group?”

“Yes, how did you guess, er, what is your name?” Zinnia let out a small sigh and caught Arion’s eye roll.

“Arion Laster and Zinnia.”

“Ah, Arion. And what are we talking about? Oh, the transplant to Chehia. Well, after all the remaining survivors got to Chehia, the wizards decided to create a very special guard so that the Isra could never attack. A storm. The storm was built to last forever, and the only way to stop it is to- well it’s complicated and involves a wizard from the original group, plus a human sacrifice.”

“Wait wait wait. This sounds like a fairy tale! Where are the Isra now?”

“Now? Ruling over all the northern islands except for two: Chehia and that island they can’t get to because only humans can. It’s called Llyn. They say that it is filled with magic and secrets long forgotten. But that’s not what we are worried about. No, what we need is this one thing: to stop the storm.”
“Mysgale! That requires a ‘human sacrifice’ does it not? Yes? I thought so. Where are we going to get that one? Put up an ad?” Zinnia was raging mad, and she was quick to show it. Arion took one look at the wizard’s frown and tugged Zinnia’s arm.

“Zin!” In a quieter tone he added “Don’t make the wizard mad.” She gave Arion a small nod and settled back into her seat.

“My, my, who are you young lady? What are you yelling about?” Mysgale waved away Arion’s explanation and continued on. “Never mind, Arion. I remember who Zinnia is now. I understand your complaints, Zinnia. But the time has come to stop the storm. You see, the Isra are weak and believe that all humans are dead or trapped. They think that Chehia is a trap and we are stuck here. So, if we leave now we are sure to be granted safe passage and we can easily overcome the Isra! So easily, that we simply must do it now.” The old wizard smiled in satisfaction and poured a cup of tea into a teacup.
“But who would be our human sacrifice?” Zinnia cocked her head defiantly and refused the cup of tea he offered. Arion accepted and the room was quiet as he and Mysgale took their first sips.

“I would.” Arion’s voice was so soft and low, Zinnia nearly missed it. However, she didn’t miss it, however much she wished she had. She responded with a shocked look and a dropped jaw that Arion put a finger on and raised.

“Oh. Do you, Arion, a Lord’s son, fully understand?”

“Yes. I will be dead. For the good of my island- my people- the last remaining humans.” Arion took a deep breath and set his tea down. “No one else will do it, especially not a court person. Am I right in assuming that the person has to agree in order for it to work?”
“Yes. But you must see, Arion, that you could do great things. You have potential as a military commander, which would be useful against the Isra.” Zinnia’s eyes widened and suddenly she threw herself into the conversation.

“No, Ari. You can’t do it.”

“Why not?” Arion and the wizard both turned to Zinnia, confusion on their faces.

“Because you are all I have left! Remember? I’m an orphan, Ari. You, a lord’s son, are my only friend and no one else even likes me. You can’t leave me, Ari!” Arion’s face briefly darkened and he was quiet for a minute.

“Zin. Let’s take this conversation outside.” Arion took Zinnia by the elbow and led her out onto the porch, leaving the wizard sitting at his chair. “I need to do this, Zinnia. And it is my choice, not yours.”

“Ari, no! I can’t just live without my only friend!” Horror lept over Zinnia’s face, sadness danced within Arion’s eyes.
“Zin…. Oh Zin. I don’t want to do this to you!”

“Then don’t. And that- right there- that ‘Zin’. You are the only one who ever calls me that. You’re the only one who bothered giving me a nickname. See how much that proves?”

“I’m so sorry. But I have to do it! No one else is going to, and it needs to be done. Besides, who came and visited you, Zin?” Zinnia was quiet for a moment, then answered in a soft voice.

“Future me.”

“And not future me.” Arion’s expression softened and he smiled weakly. “We are always together, Zin. If I was in the future, then I definitely would go with you and warn you. But… there was no Arion.”

“That doesn’t prove anything. We could change the future!” Arion shook his head at Zinnia and she sighed. “Well, you still can’t do it!”

“I will. Zin, nothing you say will stop me.” Zinnia’s eyes darkened and she turned on her heel, facing the road.

“Fine then.” Arion allowed hope to flare up for a minute, but quickly pushed it back down again. Zinnia was not one to give up so easily. “You, Ari. Go along, talk to Mysgale the mysterious wizard. Sacrifice yourself. Do it- and no longer be my friend.” Arion gasped and Zinnia popped open the little red umbrella, then fled down the long road.

“Wait! Zin- come back!” Arion ran into the rain and quickly backtracked, after he realised Zinnia had his umbrella still. His shoulders sagged and he turned to the tower again.

“Give her time.” Arion jumped up and faced the wizard, who had joined him on the porch.

“I will. But I don’t have much time.” Mysgale smiled encouragingly and handed Arion a roomy blue umbrella.

“I will see you tomorrow- Arion.”

Posted in Posts

My Dream Blog

If I had my way and my blog was exactly how I wanted it, this is what would happen:

  1. The blog would have 50 followers (an achievable goal- Hint Hint!)
  2. I would post every day except Sundays and vacations

My dream blog may never become a reality, but I think my goals are set on the low side, because you can always increase goals, but decreasing is never good. (you can. But I wouldn’t)

My dream blog would also be on a premium plan. That will never happen, possibly personal, but never premium. (unless I strike it rich 😉 Personal plan will probably happen because my birthday is around the corner. (more later)

So my goals look like this:

  • Upgrade plan
  • Increase follower count
  • Post nearly every day

Don’t forget to follow/comment/like! Thanks for reading!

Haven’t Been Posting

Okay first off: this is an email post. (First one!!) we are going to see a how this works! (:

Second: sorry I haven’t been posting. I have my cousins here, ages 6, 4, and 2. It’s very busy and we have been doing things all day! Monday we went to the park, Tuesday we went hiking by a waterfall, Wednesday (today) Dad and Uncle went on a road trip (they are brothers) while the kids and moms went to the Nature Center. Thursday we plan to have a water slide, water guns, and go splash in the river. Friday we may do a little hiking, and then they leave Saturday.

SO, Saturday I can post, and possibly a different day. I will be really active this next week because I have no school/visitors. Thank you for being so patient with me! Please comment/like!

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VBS- As a preschool crew leader

So this week our church has VBS. I am a preschool crew leader, which means I lead a group of kids around to different classes. Now, with preschoolers you have to have a different way of working than with the elementary kids. I have a group of five kids (two girls): Chloe*, Avery, (three boys) John, Henry,  and Owen.

Now, Renée was there too (actually a lot of my friends where- but she was the only preschool crew leader friend). Renée had a couple (4?) kids and Lucy had 4ish kids. Luke had 4 too, and he was in my group. See, the preschoolers had four crews, Mine, Lucy’s, Renée’s, and Luke’s. Each crew paired up with another crew for classes. It was group 1: Mine and Luke’s crews. Group 2: Lucy, and Renée’s crews.

Chloe, oh Chloe. Her younger brother (Bob) is in Lucy’s crew. Lucy’s crew sat next to my crew for the opening and closing (because she was crew 3 and I was crew 2) Somehow Chloe and Bob always ended up sitting next to each other and bothering each other. At one point Mrs. Clara B. was talking and all of the sudden Lucy and I spot Chloe and Bob rolling on the floor! Chloe was tickling Bob, and when I asked her if she was torturing her brother, she nodded.

John gives me the most trouble. The funny thing is, he’s best friends with Avery, who gives me no trouble at all. John mostly doesn’t pay attention, or listen well. At one point we where doing games with Luke’s crew and Luke had to simply pick him up because he was throwing gravel and wouldn’t listen!

Avery is a sweet little girl, and really dosn’t give me any trouble. She sits still when Mrs. Clara B is talking and listens to the teachers. Same with Owen and Henry, they don’t really give me any trouble. In fact, Owen cleans up his food mess from snack all by himself! (without me pestering him a million times)

One of my favorite stories is really sweet. Now, John gives me trouble, but he’s a sweet little boy and loves his brother to death. Every time we see his brother he is bound to run over and hug and hug his brother.

*Names changed

Please contact me and send me post ideas! I really need them! They can be prompts, things you enjoy reading about, whatever comes to mind. (I will be thanking readers, so if you want free advertising…. please include a link to your website) So again, contact and send post ideas!

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Rena Brooks

This is an interview with Rena Brooks, a writer.
1. What inspires you to write?
I am a Christian. Therefore, my inspiration to write comes from God, but the ideas for my post comes from life -dreams, conversations, nature, books articles, and the blog posts of others.  Sometimes ideas just come to me.  I truly believe that I have a call to write,  but I only realized this within the past few years. I knew that I desired to do something to make a difference in the world.
2. How often do you write?
I write something at least once a week. I do not post all of my writing online because I am working on a young adult novel. Also, I am working on a book proposal for a devotional book.  I post on WordPress,  but I am involved with an online training program,  Compel, which is offered through Proverbs 31 Ministries. I’m very busy learning from some of the best Christian writers.
3. Who affects your writing?
I read a lot. I am impacted by so many authors.  Not all of them are Christians, but I enjoy reading book and devotionals by Lysa Terkeurst, Yvonne Capehart, Liz Curtis-Higgs, Sharon Draper, and Julian Fellowes.
4. Is writing your full-time job?
Writing is a hobby, but I hope it will become a ministry. I am a former middle school math and science teacher.
5. How long have you been writing /blogging?
 I have been writing for over 20 years. At first I wrote children’s stories. I have been blogging for over a year now.
6. What are your goals for writing?
Eventually I hope to write Christian nonfiction and fiction for young people. I hope to get a book deal in the futrue.
7. Do you have a special place where you like to sit and write?
Mostly,  I write in my living room.  I like to have some background noise, so the TV is on, but I am focused on my writing.
8. How does writing affect your view on life?
Writing is cathartic.  It helps me make sense of my world.
9. How do your religious beliefs affect your writing?
I believe that I have a calling to encourage others.  Writing is my platform.  My blog posts are usually encouraging and inspiring because I am a Christian.
10. Any tips to an inspiring writer-blogger?
Write what you know.  Be authentic.  Love what you write.  Write invest in your craft.  Show.  Don’t tell.
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Harry Potter

I recently finished reading Harry Potter. JK Rowling has an absolutely wonderful way of expressing the thoughts of the Harry Potter world, and the whole system works quite wonderfully.

Now, I did not read Harry Potter and instantly become a die-hard fan. Although Harry Potter was a well written series, something in me does not want to be a potterhead. (Don’t ask why they are called that. I don’t know!)

I loved how well JK Rowling writes, and it’s the kind of book I read. (You know, fantasy/magical stuff.) I didn’t like some parts, but I don’t want to spoil it for other readers who haven’t read it yet, so I won’t say much.

Overall I think it’s a great read, even if you aren’t looking to be transformed into potterheads overnight!

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If I Had a Time Machine

If I had a time machine I would take all the time I gained from it to do one thing: Finish My Book. I would write all the books/short stories that I don’t have time for. You know why I don’t have time? Because I’m 13 years old. I go to school, and I don’t have complete control over my schedule, my parents do. So, I have an hour-two hours a day, and sometimes that’s not enough. (Mostly because of research/blogging) So, what would you do with a time machine?

Don’t forget to contact me and tell me what I should post about! (you don’t have many days left)

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You May Have Noticed (plus a poem)

That I have been changing the way this site looks. I think I’m done now, but I may change it in the future, so let’s just hope I manage to leave it this way for a long while!
And now for a poem

The Other Me

There is another me
She lives in a mirror
Who are you,
Other me?
What is your thoughts,
Other me?

You mirror what I do,
You look like me
But you are not me

I know this because,
You talk to me,
In my head

Everyone else,
Just sees me
But I know better,
I see you

Other me,
Why do you stare at me so?
Why do you live in the mirror?
Please tell me,
Other me,
Tell me please

You live in the mirror,
You look like me,
But you are not me

I know this because,
You talk to me,
Other me,
You live in a mirror

I was going to publish this yesterday, but my computer crashed (ugg) and freaked out when I tried to upload a picture 😦 So expect another post today.
So, please contact me and tell me what I should post about! (I really need this!)

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Dear Readers,

Dear Reader,
Hi, I have to tell you, that I just really thought this should be in letter format. I don’t know why, but it just seems right. How are you guys? You know, sometimes I wonder what people think about my posts. Does it make a difference to you what I post? Do you prefer my poems, short stories, life about me? Please tell me what you prefer and I will make more of that kind of post. Sorry this post is coming out so late, but I was making cookies, painting/cleaning jars, making super, reading and a lot of other stuff. I’ve been busy today.
-Loretta MZ

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