These past couples of days have made him start thinking about what has happened. Thinking if he was really fit to be what he is. This, this great and powerful wizard that everyone loves. What has he really done so far? Run away? Sneak around? That didn’t sound like a great and powerful wizard to him. Also this beast, creature, thing inside of him that keeps trying to take over his body. He didn’t have horns anymore, or the sharp teeth of an animal, but he can feel that beast inside of him growing stronger. To top it all off his best friend in the entire Spiral went to the side of evil to revive his parents, but then gave up his life to save him. He was just so confused. Why did this have to happen to him? Why can’t he just be normal like everybody else? Maybe it might be better for everyone if he just laid here forever until he was finally gone. That was his plan until he received a soft kick to his shoe.
“Y’all better have a pretty darn good reason why you laying down on my property,” he heard a female voice talk to him. He opened his eyes, they were still a little blurry, but he could only see some distinct bright pink hair from the female figure.
“M-Michelle?” he croaked out. He rubbed his eyes while the figure spoke.
“I don’ know who this Michelle character is, but she must be a looker if you think that she looks like little ol’ me,” he looked back up to see a girl that looked about five years older than him, she had purple eyes that somehow matched her bright pink hair. With what she was wearing she could be a cow girl, and she had a lasso attached to her belt. Her cow girl outfit was purple with white trim, but her boots were some sort of strange design that Jeremy has never seen before.
“I-I’m sorry. Thought you were someone else,” Jeremy apologized.
“Is no problem, kid. Name’s Amy. Amy Dragonstaff,” Amy said.
“Um Jeremy, Jeremy Wildred,” he introduced himself.
“Nice ta meet ya, Jeremy. Whatcha doin’ out here in the Mirage desert all on your lonesome?” She extended her hand to help him up. Jeremy took the help and stood up and dusted himself off.
“Well, I kind of ran away,” he answered her.
“Aww shoot. You too? Why do all these kids keep runnin’ away? Geez, I can’t keep taking care of y’all more,” Amy started complaining and Jeremy just stood there confused. He didn’t ask her to take care of him. “M’sorry. Kinda went all crackly-doo on ya. Com’on I need ta show ya somethin’” She just started walking away a few steps before she noticed Jeremy wasn’t moving. “What are ya, yellowbellied?” Jeremy scoffed and walked with Amy until they reached an oasis that popped out of nowhere. There was a huge lake in the middle of a lush jungle. It seemed so vibrant and beautiful. Jeremy rushed towards the water and drank as much as he could. He didn’t realize he was this thirsty before. Amy just watched him until she got bored and whistled a strange sound. Jeremy stood up from drinking and looked at Amy. Amy just gave him a smirk before he heard a roar and giant stomps coming from the brush.
“What’s that?” Jeremy asked her as he was stepping backward slowly.
“Is nothing’ just the sweetest little darn thing to ever walk this earth,” she answered him. Right after she finished her answer a giant dragon-like thing stepped out of the bushes. Its skin was a grey white color, and when the light hit the scales the skin looked like it was made of silver. The creature looked like it was about 15 feet long and could swallow someone whole! Amy walked up to the dragon and was petting it like it was a puppy. This girl is crazy!
“What? Don’tcha ever seen a Cloud Wyvern before?” She rested her head on the side of the wyvern’s face and started cooing and making sounds which the wyvern copied. “Well? Don’t just stand there. Com’say hi to Lunette.” Jeremy stepped forward hesitantly while watching the wyvern just in case it made any attempt to eat him.
“N-Nice wyvern… G-Good wyvern,” he said trying to keep his voice from cracking. He was eventually standing only a few inches from the wyvern and reached his hand out to pet him but jumped slightly when the wyvern snorted. Amy giggled and encouraged him to keep going. Jeremy reached his hand out and started petting the giant wyvern. He had to admit, the wyvern was kind of neat and a cool pet to have. “So, why did you call her?” he said as he continued petting her.
“We’re going to ride her,” she said with a hint of mischief in her eyes. Before Jeremy could say anything Amy grabbed him and jumped on the wyvern and in a second they were up in the air flying over the desert. Jeremy was trying not to look down at the ground since he never flew before in his life. He was grabbing onto the saddle that was conveniently placed there. “Geez kid, stop being so yellowbellied.” Amy laughed.
“Haha, just tell me when we’re there wherever we’re going,” Jeremy said with his eyes still closed.
“Well then, it’s not that big of deal. Jus’ goin’ to that Mirage market down there,” Amy said and Jeremy opened his eyes slightly to see where she was pointing. From above it looked like a bustling town and the buildings were made of either stone or clay, but they had a tannish color with stands that were selling fruit and other goods. Amy made another sound that instructed the wyvern to descend at an amazing speed that had Jeremy worried that they were going to crash. Just before they were about to crash the wyvern pulled out its giant wings and flapped them once and they were on the ground without even a thump. Jeremy looked around and saw that instead of seeing the bustling market that he saw from the air the market was deserted and no one in sight.
“What happened to the people?” He turned around the ask Amy as he got off. Amy didn’t answer yet she looked around and gave a smirk. She tipped her hat a little down and stuck a purple tooth pick in her mouth.
“I’ll catch ya later, Jeremy. Gotta round up my girls,” she winked at Jeremy and the wyvern took off and if you were unlucky to have blinked you would have missed it. Jeremy looked around, the town looked more like a ghost town and to add to it a tumble weed rolled across the streets. He took a few steps before he heard whispering behind him. He quickly spun around trying to find where the whispers were coming from, but no luck. He scratched the back of his neck and called out.
“Hello? Is anybody here?” He didn’t get a response. He walked forward to a fountain in the middle of an intersection. Maybe he could find someone there. He arrived at the fountain with still no one in sight. “I swear this town was full of people before we landed,” he mumbled to himself. “Maybe it was just a mirage?” He sat at one of the ledges of the fountain, sighed, and started to think. What was he supposed to do now? Wait until the weird cow girl came back with the rest of her friends?
He was actually thinking of waiting until he felt something poke him in the leg. He opened his eyes and saw a stick and followed the stick until he saw an armadillo wearing a white turban and looked pretty young.
“Yes?” Jeremy asked the armadillo.
“W-who are you?” the armadillo stepped back and held the stick like it was ready to attack.
“My name is Jeremy. I come from Central city,” he said in a monotone voice.
“Why did she not kill you?” the armadillo asked, fear evident in his voice.
She? Jeremy thought until he realized he was talking about the cow girl that dropped him off. “I don’t know, really. Who is she?” Jeremy asked him.
“They say her wrath is worse than the Dragon titan. She decimated many villages from all across the worlds of the Spiral. We call her,” the armadillo gulped, “Cotton Candy.” Jeremy did everything he could to hold in the laugh that was building up. Cotton Candy? Is he serious?
“W-why?” was all Jeremy could say trying to stifle his laugh.
“Just before she arrives to destroy you, the clouds up above turn different shades and colors. My grandpa says she does it so people have something nice to look at before they’re gone,” the armadillo gulped again and looked around obviously anxious.
“I think we’re talking about two completely different people. The girl I met was nice and even gave me some water,” Jeremy told the armadillo. Just as the armadillo was going to say something a booming sound came from the sky. Just as the armadillo said the sky turned different shades of blue and red. It was extremely beautiful, mesmerizing even. There was a flash of light and a crashing sound came from behind them. They turned quickly but saw only a dust cloud of some sort and a silhouette of 3 figures standing in front of something big. Once the cloud was cleared away you could see the cowgirl from before standing in between two new girls. The one on the left was dressed in a white cowgirl outfit with a green tint in the trim, had blond hair, and looked like the youngest of the three. The one on the right was wearing all black with a bright red whip to her side and had black hair with one strand of it dyed red and she seemed like the oldest of the trio. Amy looked directly at Jeremy and smirked which sent a shiver down his spine. She stepped forward towards them and the others to the side followed right behind her. She stopped just a couple steps in front of Jeremy and looked down towards the armadillo.
“Who’s the short kid?” she signaled towards the armadillo with her chin.
“Please don’t hurt me!” The armadillo fell to his knees and begged.
“I ain’t gonna hurt you fool. Just gonna introduce lil’ Jeremy here to my sisters is all.” She looked back at Jeremy with a creepy smile. Jeremy took a deep breath and looked at her with a stoic face.
“I know who you are.” Jeremy said.
“Oh do you now?” Amy started circling around him while the others smirked.
“Yes, I do,” He glared at her.
“Then tell me. Who am I?”
“You’re the one they call ‘Cotton Candy’,” Amy’s eyes widened for just a split second but then she had a smug look on her face.
“Do you really believe these people? Their made up nonsense is nothing but lies,” She lied through her teeth.
“I won’t let you hurt these people.”
“I won’t hurt them. Now that I found what I’m looking for…” She whispered in his ear that made the hair on the back of his neck stand up.
“What?” He asked. The two other girls started chuckling and Amy looked back towards them.
“How rude of me, I forgot the introductions,” Amy walked back to her sisters and signaled to the one on the right. “This is my sister, Briana Ashtail, otherwise known as Licorice.” The last name emanated gasps from the on lookers in their houses. “You know why they call her Licorice, Jeremy?” Amy nodded towards Brianna and she pulled out her red whip. She whipped it towards Jeremy and just barely hit him on the arm. It stung a little bit to him, but luckily he moved so he didn’t get the full impact. “…When someone gets hit by her whip that only she can control, even a little scratch they are incapable of moving. Sort of like they’re paralyzed.” Just as the sentence ended Jeremy felt his legs begin to weaken and he fell on his knees to the sand. The cut started throbbing and he could barely move his arms.
“Pretty cool isn’t it?” Brianna smirked. Jeremy lifted his head which at the moment felt like it weighed a ton.
“Y-you work for the Death Hatake, don’t you?” He questioned the trio. Amy’s eyes became enraged and thunder could be heard coming from the clouds. She grabbed Jeremy’s collar and pulled him up to her face
“How dare you think I work with that horrible, disgusting, sorry excuse of a wizard!” She yelled at him. “I would never in my life associate myself with that low-life!”
“And yet you go around destroying poor villages…” Jeremy countered.
“I was on a mission to find something.”
“You,” Amy answered. Jeremy reached up and grabbed her wrist.
“Get. Off.” He jumped away, but still felt a little off because of the whip.
“He definitely is the one. No one has ever recovered from the poison that quickly,” Amy said to herself. “How rude! You didn’t even wait until I introduced you to Veronica. Also known as, Mint.” Whispers were heard throughout the town. It seems that the blond one was even more well-known than Brianna. Veronica smirked and disappeared in a cloud of dust and reappeared behind Jeremy.
“It’s nice to finally meet you, Jeremy,” Veronica whispered into Jeremy’s ear. Her breath felt like a chilling breeze that made the hair on the back of Jeremy’s neck stand up. “Now, why don’t you just sit and stay a little.” Jeremy’s body automatically obeyed and Jeremy struggled to get back up but couldn’t. “That’s a good boy,” Veronica smirked and petted his head like a dog. His glare to her could set her on fire if it was possible. “Aww, don’t be mad honey bunch,” Jeremy’s glare turned into a smile, “Much better… I think it’s time for you to have a nice little nap.” His eyes felt heavy as he fell down on his side completely asleep.
Jeremy’s eyes fluttered open. He felt a strong gust of wind hit his face and tried to move his arm but he was wrapped in Brianna’s whip. He tried to get out of it when he felt a patting on his shoulder. He looked up to see Brianna looking down at him.
“It’s best not to move when we’re this high up,” he looked down and sure enough they were flying high above a forest of trees of different colors and shapes, mostly trees that were cut in a cube shape.
“Where are we? Where are you taking me?” He questioned the three sisters.
“We’re in Avalon. We’re taking you to someone who can help,” Amy answered.
“Help me? Who can help me in Avalon?” Just as he finished they landed in a forest in the middle of the Weirwood. The whip slithered off of Jeremy like a snake and wrapped itself around the holster on Brianna’s belt. He saw that the three started walking to a bunch of trees and wondering why they would be so stupid to leave him alone.
“Follow,” Veronica ordered and Jeremy’s feet started moving on their own. Well that answers that. They came up into a clearing that looked astonishing and had a little pond to the side that was barely 6 feet in diameter. In the middle of the pond was a very small island that could maybe fit one person. What surprised Jeremy was that there actually was a person sitting or meditating on that small island. It was a very old bald man that had a white beard. He wore a brown clock that only had one sleeve. Jeremy looked at the sisters and they pushed him towards the old man. He was very confused on what to do so he just sat in front of the old man across the small pond. He sat and waited for about five minutes before he released a very deep sigh.
“I’ve been expecting you, young wizard,” this scared Jeremy a little but he recovered before anyone saw.
“Who are you?” Jeremy asked.
“A better question would be who I was.”
“Ok...? Who were you?”
“I’m not following,” he said confused.
“Of course, you are meant to be a leader.”
“That’s not what I meant.”
“Then what did you mean?”
“I meant, I’m confused on what you said. How.. how can you used to be me when I’m right here.”
“I am your previous life.” Jeremy thought about this for a minute before he finally figured it out.
“You’re the Life Hatake.”
“I was, yes.”
“But you’re still alive, so that means-“
“No, I’m not.”
“I can see you right in front of me.”
“You can only see me because you’re a Hatake.”
“Then how come they can see you,” Jeremy pointed to the girls sitting on the side.
“Only Amy can see me,” the old man corrected him.
“Then that means..?”
“Yes, she is a Hatake as well,” Jeremy looked at Amy and she smirked back.
“Storm,” Jeremy blurted out.
“Yes, she is a very powerful Diviner,” the old man commented, “and an ego to match.”
“Hey!” Amy yelled.
“Now, the reason I called you here is to train you,” the old man explained.
“Train me for what?”
“I had a vision. A great battle is upon us, Jeremy. One that decides the fate of
the Spiral. Unfortunately, you are not ready to fight in it. This is why you are here. I will teach you everything I know.”
“Everything you know? That could take months, maybe years! There’s no time.”
“On the contrary, there is always time for those who know how to seize it,” the old man waved his hand and a flower grew and blossomed in front of Jeremy.
“The Fortuniana rose,” he remembered that flower.
“So you’ve heard of this flower?”
“The time flower. This is what we’re using?” the old man nodded and smiled.
“Before we tamper with time however, we must open the gates inside of you so your power can flow through your body.”
“What do you mean?” Jeremy asked confused.
“Your powers have been locked. I can sense a great seal has been placed on it, but the Hatake cannot be suppressed,” Jeremy remembered Angel doing something to keep him from going out of control. Could that be it? “As you have noticed your Hatake power leaks through the gate time and again to help you in certain situations.”
“-But what if when we release the Hatake power we also release Lord Raidon?”
“We will worry about Raidon after we release your Hatake power. You cannot hope to control something if you do not control yourself first. Therefore we’ll need you at your full strength to be able to deal with Raidon,” Jeremy sighed but understood what the old man was saying. “Now, are you ready young Hatake?” Jeremy nodded and took a deep breath. “Relax, breathe in and out slowly, meditate and concentrate on the power. Venture into your inner self. Focus on the power that lies deep inside you,” the old man instructed.
Jeremy kept breathing deeply until he felt relaxed and a few minutes later he felt himself become weightless and there was no sound at all. Not of the pond, not from the birds that were chirping before, just endless silence. He snapped his eyes open and he was in a different endless forest. There was no sound in the forest, nothing.
“Where am I?” Jeremy asked.
“You are inside yourself, young Hatake,” came the voice of the old man that echoed throughout the forest.
“There is a forest inside me?”
“This is your inner self. You are a life wizard of the highest order. Your inner self represents who and what you are.”
“What is that exactly?” Jeremy questioned the old man.
“Life… Endless, beautiful, peaceful. Growing all around us. That is life,” the old man explained. Jeremy thought this over for a moment. Is this really what I am? “Now, you must find the power of the Hatake sealed within.”
“And how am I supposed to do that?” He asked the old man.
“Don’t ask me that question. This is your inner self, not mine.” Jeremy grumbled a few words before he started walking through the quiet forest. After a few minutes of walking aimlessly he was getting very annoyed.
“How the heck do I find this stupid thing?” As he uttered those words he heard a very high pitch noise which he found odd because the forest was silent the whole time. He followed the noise for about five minutes before he came to clearing that has a giant glowing golden cage that looked like a dome. The inside of the dome was filled with a green mist that swirled around inside. He stepped closer to it and he heard whispers coming from the inside. He touched the dome and had a warm, comforting feeling fill him up from the inside. “Is.. is this.. it?” he asked unsure if the old man would respond.
“Yes, this is the power of the Life Hatake. The voices you hear is the voices of all of nature speaking to you.”
“Is that why the forest is empty and quiet? Because everything is locked up in here?” Jeremy asked. He got no answer back. He walked around the dome trying to find a door or opening of some sort. He found a door with a wand for a handle. He inspected the wand for a second before he decided it was safe to use. He grabbed the wand and tried to pull the door open. The high pitch noise got louder and the dome started vibrating before the wand shot out a force that knocked Jeremy backwards into the trees. He sat up quickly until he realized he was back sitting in front of the old man and the three sisters with a worried look on their face. “What just happened?”
“It seems her magic was stronger than I thought…” the old man muttered to himself.
“Who are you talking about?” Jeremy asked.
“Dorothy Mystaga… Your mother.”find wha