Book One: Chapter Eighteen

Escape Plan part III: Sudden Execution

Mandolin awoke feeling refreshed. The sun still shone through the window of the prison cell and Mandolin had to remind herself of how long a single day was in Ourantith. She thought about the silly commotion early in the day and chuckled. She understood Freya quite well as she herself had problems dealing with people passing make believe tales for reality.

After putting on the smallest set of clothing Lucinda and Pomeroy had obtained along with a pair of boots, she sat down and began practicing using her power. She practiced by throwing pellets out of the window and speeding them up until they punctured a nearby tree. Half of an hour passed and sweat covered her brow when Davina interrupted. “you know if you exhaust yourself our escape plan is useless?”

Mandolin smiled. “I will rest. We just can’t make Freya do everything on her own.” Davina’s eyebrows raised.

“You wouldnt understand right now. Freya is the only reason we are currently alive and whole. I need more strength.” Mandolin resumed her practice only, she decided to try working with gravity. With one of her left over pellets, she began attempting to levitate it. Their successful escape from the testing facility was largely due to Freya power. Mandolin did not fail to notice that Freya had yet to use her powers since they arrived on Ourantith. While she appeared energetic, the fact that the prison was still standing after all the time they spent there concerned Mandolin. Freya could have escaped easily if she wanted to.

Some time after Mandolin rose, Yoko awoke and started doing Yoga stretches. Mandolin had managed to levitate a pellet a foot off of the ground. “Good work!” said Yoko. “if you ask Freya she might be able to help you increase your ability.”

Mandolin looked at Yoko and grimaced, “about that… Freya always did mediocre on all tests. Aside from you, and maybe Clyde, I don’t think anyone knew what she was capable of.”

“I didn’t know what she was capable of, but I trusted her. I know she is not foolish though she sometimes seems a bit spacey. I’m sure you noticed she has been taking it really easy.” Yoko looked at her remaining family and smiled. “I already told her to get lots of sleep.” She undressed and put on a set of clothing the old couple brought back. As she finished, Davina stood up.

“I hear you two talk about how powerful Freya is… but what exactly is it that she can do? Is it magic?” she looked puzzled. “I saw you Mandolin and you were making things move but you have no jewelry or wand, you said no incantation, but you made that tree look like Ang Higala cheese.”

Eh? I guess that’s the Ourantith version of our saying something looks like Swiss cheese. Mandolin thought.

“you’re exactly right Mandolin.”

“don’t indiscriminately read people’s minds!”

Yoko smiled. “as you can see Davina, I can hear peoples thoughts. I will leave Freya to explain her own abilities when she wakes up, though I’m not really sure if it’s possible.” Yoko picked up her cloak and swept it around her her shoulders, and fastened it. After sitting on her duffel bag she continued. “I am not sure whether what we use is magic or not. None of us learned how to do what we do. We are just able to use these powers naturally. When I was a young child my parents hated me because I knew everything they were thinking. I didn’t even know how to stop it until I started living with Freya and her family. Her parents taught me how to control my ability on my own.”

Davina eyes widened as she smiled. “I think I get it now. Maybe it’s all because the people of your world are different from us. At the same time its like the power I was born with being part elf. For a few years I couldn’t look any men in the eye because of my elf blood. I can mesmerize them. Mr. DeSarto was the first man who could look me in the eye properly and he taught me how to control this ability. I had to learn water magic later though.” A stream of water formed in the air and swirled around as Davina directed it with a ring adorned hand.

Yoko sighed “we need to figure out the difference between what we use and the magic here, if there is one.” She closed her eyes and leaned against the wall.

Davina and Mandolin had spent the next half hour talking about magic. Davina showed her some of her water magic skills, pulling more and more water out of the air as the daily mist slowly began to set in. After explaining to Mandolin the idea of water magic, she tried to teach Mandolin how to pull water out of the air. Mandolin chanted the spell “aquacondense” and she was able to pull a few drops of water out of the air. Until she tasted the droplets-that were not salty-she thought it was just sweat. “maybe you have a talent for water magic too. It takes a few days normally for the first incantation to start working for you…” Mandolin began to practice more eagerly. She continued practicing and learned a new spell for a water spear- that spell did not require an incantation, but it required large amounts of imagination and focus. It was simpler for Mandolin than the spell that required incantation as she was used to making thoughts manifest. The only difference was she was using magic rather than influencing the basic material of existance. Suddenly she dropped her spear and Davina suddenly looked in the direction where Mandolins eyes were suddenly focused. Yoko suddenly stood up and shuddered. Mandolin and Davina saw her shocked expression.

“what’s wrong?” Davina asked.

Yokos eyes closed and she gulped. “I didn’t hear it…I was sleeping earlier…they killed him at the mines. I was listening in at the Palace… and it’s my fault.”

The security team at the mines took it upon their selves to kill Mr. DeSarto earlier than planned. Yoko’s visit earlier created more of an impression on the guards there than she expected. Her action and questions made them very suspicious about her motives. The head of the guards, who was also a wizard, did not meet Yoko. He noticed that something strange had come over his men as well and after using a strange power that partially cleared their heads—he couldn’t completely dispel Yoko’s power—he questioned his staff and discovered that Yoko had asked questions that could assist anyone seeking to free Mr. DeSarto. She had just listened in at the Palace as the head of security informed the King of the earlier events and of Mr. DeSarto execution.

Yoko was not able to tell them any more because a sudden outcry of desperate voices penetrated her mind and shook her to her core. “It’s an attack!”

“What?!?” said Davina and Mandolin.

“The walls to Trolipolitus! Someone is attacking the city! Wake Freya! We can’t just sit here and wait to be killed!” Yoko practically screamed.

“eh? No worries.” Said one of the prisoners who had been asleep the whole time—or maybe not. “if anything the people attacking want to take this Astrid girl with them… wait no Freya. Astrid reborn.” She chuckled.

oh? NOW they decide to act like they are awake. Yoko thought to Freya.

Yeah. They were doing such a good job pretending! Freya rolled her eyes and sat up.

“wait… who the hell are you?” Freya’s voice cut across the cell. Looking at Yoko, “Yoko I think you could have been a bit louder. If you kept speaking so quietly I may have gone halfway back to sleep.” In fact Yoko’s scream had roused several prisoners in her vicinity.

“I’m an ally.” The girl replied. “Pallas-Athena Robespierre. Call me Pal. My… employer wants to meet you.”

“Who the hell is your employer, and how do you know he wants to meet me. And… Doesn’t he think I’m Astrid?” Her temper flared “You guys are despicable feigning sleep.” Does it seem like I’m really surprised? Freya transmitted to Mandolin and Yoko.

Mandolin nodded.

You look like you just got the shock of your life. Yoko responded while smiling.

Pal smiled. “We’ve been keeping in touch with our employer since the young mistress arrived… Well even if I had told him exactly what happened, who you are and where you came from, he wouldn’t believe me. My Abalone hawk can only relay verbal messages she can’t show images.” Suddenly a hawk with a long tail appeared with feathers of blue, green, and purple.

“A Peacock! But not a peacock.” Yoko said.

“so this is what you call a peacock in your world?” Davina replied.

“No. That’s actually not a peacock but an abalone hawk. Peacocks cannot fly.” Yoko smiled.

Davina rolled her eyes. “It’s not a peacock” she sighed, while shaking her head.

Freya raised her voice. “I don’t care who is looking for me. I’m leaving here though.” Grabbing the remaining pants shoes and shirt she got dressed, donned her cape, and packed her bag. “Yoko.”

Yoko packed her bag and placed the strap across her body so that the bag was at her right hip. She placed her quiver of arrows across her body so that her right arm could easily grab arrows.

Freya attached her Katana in its sheath to her belt and gave Mandolin her set of throwing knives. “I’m sure you didn’t take these before because you’re not the best with them but I’m sure that with your powers you can do some damage.” Mandolin nodded.

Freya put her arms through the short straps of her duffel bag, wearing it like a back pack. She was surprised because it did not feel as heavy as she thought it would be. Her body felt light and moving was easier. That was some revitalizing sleep.

Pal laughed aloud. “well Ms. Freya. It looks like you’re all talk. These two say you’re strong but I have yet to see you do anything that can get you out of here on your own. You may as well cut the crap and…”

The doors of all the prison cells on their side of the long passageway opened. Freya stepped out of the cell and opened the doors of the cells on the other side. “Let’s go.”

Pal gasped in surprise. She was still not sure of how or who, as no incantation or gesture had been performed. Freya did not verify either.

Davina, Mandolin and Yoko exited the cell. “Davina, I hope you can fend for yourself. Well, right now I’m kinda glad we’re in this archaic world with no guns.”

“what?” Yoko asked.

“What she means is that she doesn’t have to use up a lot of power trying to stop thousands of high speed bullets from several armed military officers and special forces.” Mandolin grinned.

“… ah… right. Sorry guys.” Yoko cut in. “I have trouble focusing intensely on whats in front of me when I use my power, but we need to get out of here and make our way to the western gate… wherever that is… Davina?”

Davina took the lead. The other girls half serious banter confused her as she didn’t know what they were talking about. Nevertheless she figured they were trying to say that Freya wouldn’t have much trouble using her powers on Ourantith, like she did on Earth. The prisoners in the other cells had started racing away from the prison. The guards had already left. Two of the guards headed to the Palace while Fikes made his way to the Western Gate.

The four girls exited the cell followed by Pal. The other two girls had awoken and stood up before Freya had noticed them. What happened next, happened in the blink of an eye. The two girls stood next to Yoko one aimed a dagger at her midsection. As Freya wrested the dagger from her hand, the other girl raised her left hand towards Yoko and said “estrangulo!”

Yoko began gasping for air. Suddenly Freya heard a scream from behind as Pal held a blade at Davina’s throat. Mandolin moved close to Freya and grabbed her hand.

“you have two options Freya. The first is to come with me, and these two will survive. The other option is you can go freely… but these two will either die or I will take them to my boss as consolation prizes. In addition to utilizing their abilities I’m sure my boss will have many other uses for them…” she said, then chuckled to herself.

FREYA! Yoko transmitted her thoughts to Frey. Just play along for now. They seem to think we just rely on powers and cant fight. We need to gather information. Davina also seems to be unskilled in hand to hand combat. We can figure out what to do later.

Freya gave her a questioning look then rolled her eyes. Whatever. She replied.

“Fine. Have it your way. I will go with you.” She tightened her grip on Mandolins hand. The girl who had threatened Yoko released her spell.

Yoko could have released herself as soon as the girl released the spell and Freya would have tossed the girl out of a window. She agreed that they did need information though. While continuing their farce they would act like captives until they had a better grip on their situation. No one but Yoko and Mandolin noticed that Freya’s eyes became slightly wet with tears.