Laurel is laying in bed still in her nightgown even though it is nearing the afternoon. The nightgown is just her damaged underskirt, but right now they couldn't be picky. Melissa gently scrubs the blood from Laurel's face while sniffling. Laurel matted black hair stuck to her face causing Melissa to scowl. "I told you to be careful. Why must you push yourself like this?" the mother complains.
"Mom I told you I'm fine," Laurel retorts as she tries to grab the cloth.
Mellisa grabs Laurel's nightgown and shoves her face into her daughter's chest and yells a muffled, "You're not fine! please."
Laurel hand hesitantly stretches out towards the top of her mother's head as a door knock interrupts them. Mellisa grip tightens on her daughter for a moment before letting go. She stands and wipes her face with a clean cloth before answering the door. As she opens the door, she sees a smiling Elanor.
Elanor observes a depressing site as the broken mother comes into view. With the sharp ears of a cultivator, she'd heard them easily through the rickety shack. Melissa has dark rings under her eyes, her shoulders droop and shudder at even the smallest of stimuli.
"Oh, um what brings you here Elanor?" she asks with surprise.
Elanor waves at Mellisa with a smile. "I just came over to play a bit!" Elanor says happily.
Melissa doesn't quite know how to respond to this cultivator. She's an adult and is strong enough to wipe them out with a finger, but she acts just like a kid. "Sorry, Laurel isn't feeling so well today," the beleaguered mother informs Elanor as she rubs her forehead.
Laurel lay just around the corner and decides to call out that it's alright for Laurel to visit when she is cut off by an aggressive Elanor bursting in.
Elanor briskly grabs the mother by her shoulder giving her a half hug and sweeps her into the room as if she is a feather being blown away by a light breeze. "No worries I understand! We'll play inside then," She replies as she sweeps Mellisa into the house.
As Elanor enters the small shack her eyes fall on the pale Laurel. Traces of blood are still visible on her nose and lips. Ignoring the attempts to protest of the aggrieved mother Elanor sits next to Laurel and smiles brightly. "The energy is good here, and the food is nutritious. How did you manage to get in such a state?" she asks with interest.
"I had another bad dream," Laurel explains. She then goes onto to describe her strange dream she to Elanor.
As Elanor listens to the story, her eyes go dull, and soon she is yawning as her eyes droop. Near the end, though her sleepiness disapears when the green eyes show up. "Hmm," she sounds as she examines her fingernails.
"It's weird, right? What do you think?" Laurel asks hopefully. Elanor is the only person she knows that might have any knowledge of her situation. She hadn't noticed how uninterested the Elanor got during her recounting.
"I don't think its that strange. Your eyes are special. But I don't know anything about them myself. But if what you say is true you consciousness must have shifted out of this dimension!" Elanor tells Laurel with excitement.
"Out of this dimension?!" Mellisa squeaks with her hand over her mouth.
"Yeah, good thing you had some ancient karma with the Emerald family. How else could you return from such a place?" Elanor nods while looking smug.
"I almost lost my daughter over a stupid dream?" Mellisa shouts in anger before questioning, "is there truly no way to stop them for good?"
Elanor looks over and shrugs. "They are called diviner's eyes so perhaps if we removed them... But there isn't much guarantee."
"Isn't that too much?" Mellisa cries.
"Mom I'm fine. I don't want my eyes cut out!" Laurel protests. She then looks back at Elanor and asks, "What were you saying about the Emerald family?"
"That's who you met right? The give away is the eyes that look like actual Emerald stones. Though I think the line is wholly diluted so you won't find such beautiful eyes nowadays. The only person that could save you like that would be the Emerald king or Raul Emerald. But since the Emerald king is sealed..." She explains with envy.
"Raul Emerald?" the girl asks.
Elanor grabs Laurel's hands and with stars in her eyes exclaims, "Indeed he reached godhood with my ancestor. You're so lucky! I've heard so much about their adventures. But you even get told a secret that the dimension wants to crush?"
"Yeah for you its fun but me it's scary. I don't even know what's so special about making a promise to myself," Laurel pouts while squeezing Elanor's hand.
"Beats me. I've never been into riddles or the like. But if you come to my home sometime, then you could learn a lot for sure. Even if you can't find someone who has diviner's eyes, I'm sure there is something written in the old library," Elanor brags.
"Is it close by?" Mellisa asks hopefully.
"Then it's impossible. We barely made it to this clearing." Mellisa says with drooping shoulders.
"Yup, you guys are too weak right now. But in the future..." Elanor starts to say before pausing. Her eyes open wide as she remembers something. "That's right! In like 20 years the women's holy land opens up. You have to come by then, or you'll regret it."
"Women's holy land?" Laurel asks while tilting her head.
"That's right it's a sealed land that opens every hundred years. It was created by Evelyn and a few other famous women. She's our ancestor who became a god with Raul. It has tests, and you can gain some excellent equipment and techniques," Elanor tells Laurel with enthusiasm. She then leans in, and whispers, "There are even a few techniques I've heard about that are fun for adults. But you're too young to hear about those now." She then winks at the clueless girl.
The girl talk is cut short by another knock on the door.
In a seedy bar, a few men in hoods look over a recruitment notice.
"Those bastards!" A grizzly man shouts.
"They can't even let the people who escaped into that forgotten place go?" A masked man sneers.
A muscled man with a scar stabs the notice with a dagger and orders, "Call the lads together. It's time for us to make a last stand!"
The sound of drum: *bum*
Thanks for reading!
Those who jumped on it with in the first few minutes would have saw the next chapter title on accident.
Also I'd love to hear any thoughts on the new cover or novel name.
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