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The Shard

                             by Jonathon Pierce

Jonathon Pierce surveyed the destruction of the Pool of Remembrance. Each member of the Devon Household used their special talents to search its remains.

Iffley wandered slowly around the Pool's banks. The Pool had dried up long ago, yet the ground was still mysteriously damp. The once beautiful site was now a giant hole, muddy and ugly. He sighed over the loss of the Pool and thought of Enad's terrible use of his Key.

"The Keys were meant for goodness and Justice," he told the Quische, who was rolling along, "not for death and destruction!"

The group stopped at the edge of the bank. Obliging1y, the Quische changed into an escalator, transporting them into the center.

Suddenly, Fitch entered a trance and said, "I feel a power nearby." Ambercrombie, then, too, entered the trance. He led the group to the exact spot Fitch had seen.

"The power is beneath us." He said slowly. With these words the Twins returned to normal.

Upon Jonathon's command, the Quische turned into a bulldozer. It quickly dug into the damp earth. After a few feet, the hole filled with a clear liquid.

"It's the Artesian of Remembrance," Jonathon exclaimed, "the source to the Pool itself!"

"I must find a fitting gift to repay Adena." Iffley proclaimed as he waved the Sceptre over the Waters. The Artesian clouded and wisps of fog appeared around the well. The Waters cleared and an image appeared within:

A beautiful Crystal, purple and multi-faceted, began to gather power. Over the centuries, the Crystal grew so powerful that it could not contain its strength. The Crystal shattered, throwing its many pieces throughout the world.

"I thought that the Plague had destroyed all of the Crystal's Shards." Campuria said.

"Apparently not," came Ambercrombie response. The Artesian clouded once more:

The Shard lay nestled deep in a cave. It gilstened in an unseen light.

"Why will it not reveal the Shard's location?" Campuria inquired.

"The Artesian has neither the strength nor the power the Pool had." Ambercrombie replied, "Fitch and I can, however, lead you to the Shard."

The Quische then changed into a rather fat-looking Danae and carried them in search of their Quest.

The hypnotic trance led Ambercrombie and Fitch to a small island in the East Sea of Discord. After landing on the island, Ambercrombie led the way to the Shard. Oblivious of all dangers around him, he proceeded until they reached the Shard's location.

The entrance to the cave was covered with small vines and thorns. The vines did not hinder the Twins' movements into the cave, yet they would not permit any other member of the group to enter. . .

The walls of the cave were made of polished marble. The Shard sparkled as an unseen light reflected off of its many facets. The Shard was purple and faultless. Below the Shard were pictures depicting a strange man with three arms removing the Shard from its resting place.

The Twins touched the Shard and its power flowed through them. The facet closest to them began to glow and showed:

Prom Night. The hustle and bustle of preparations for the dance. The Twins looked dashing in their specially made tie and tails.

"Hey, guys!" Mij Slocin said, "I thought you were going stag!"

"Not tonight Mij. . . Not tonight! " Fitch pleaded.

"Why don't you go and dance with yourselves!" He retorted.

The rage within the Twins had finally reached the boiling point. They raised their middle hand and pointed at Mij. He flew onto the table and into the plate of cookies. For a Grande Finale, the Twins poured the punch on his head. . .

The Shard grew dark and the Twins carried it outside.

"That's the last thing I wanted to think about." Fitch said.

"It's the Shard's protection. Upon first contact, it recalls the intruder's worst experience. After that, the Shard is obliged to the holders use."

They gave the Shard to Iffley. The moment he touched it, it began to glow brightly:

Iffley held the Sceptre and admired its beauty. Suddenly, it vanished!

Iffley's worst fears were suddenly realized and he shrank back in terror.

"We must get to Furanose. . .before it is too late!" He cried.

The Quische flew off toward Furanose. The sky seemed ominously dark; the stars shone in a bitter light. The moon seemed to mock him, as if it knew something he didn't. . .

 © 1984, 

L. Charles, D. Conrad, A. Duncan, Enad the Great, J. Pierce, B. C. Randolf, and T. G. Taft

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