stared at the Ring in his hand. Adena had rejected him again. He had given her
the Ring as a promise--a promise of undying love. It had been an engagement
Ring, only she had never realized that fact. Even now, she still loved Blue,
and no other man would ever measure up to Adena's high standards. Iffley's
heart had known this, causing him to leave before he had gotten too
opened the door and returned into the study. The desert still stretched out
into the horizon, but no fierce winds stirred the sand. Immediately, he
noticed the absence of Sterling's body. Iffley was certain that Adena had
killed him. But where was his body?
turned his mind to the task ahead. He transformed the nearest dune into his
desk. Obviously, Sterling's power was not in effect now. A large dune became
the davenport. The long process of restoration had only begun, but Iffley felt
that he needed the time alone.
by Iffley, a small, black cricket crawled out from the study and into the
hall. It leapt several times and hid in a dark closet. Assured of its safety,
it began to sing softly. Soon, it would have its revenge.
* * Out of the Blue * *
arrived in Furanose via danae. She had several things that she had to
accomplish during her short visit, and she decided to begin with the
entered the vast chambers and approached the seated members of the Council.
"I have come to resign my position as ruling figure of
you cannot, the laws will not permit this."
don't care about the laws anymore. I just want to get away from
if we permit this, who shall replace you as ruler?"
really don't care. The chief advisor is next in succession, isn't
don't make this more difficult than it already is. I love Furanose, but I have
to leave." She nodded to the Council and quickly left the chamber. She
walked briskly down the hallway toward Eve's room. She knocked on the door and
there is something that I have to tell you."
Adena?" Eve, dressed in a pink sundress, waited patiently for Adena to
begin. She wondered what was on her mind. Knowing that Adena usually did not
beat around the bush eased her mind; she would not have long to wait until
Adena told her tale of woe.
was right, for Adena immediately spoke, "Eve, you are my best friend, and
I know that I can trust you. Something has come up, and I have to leave. I
have resigned the throne. You, as well as anyone else, has an extraordinarily
good chance to become the ruler of Furanose. I suggest that you try."
do you mean you resigned the throne? I thought that you loved
know that I love Furanose."
if you leave, what will happen to Furanose? You have been the best ruler
Furanose has ever seen."
sure that she will survive without me." She smiled warmly at Eve. "I
have a present for you." She touched the Amulet and removed it from her
I can't take your Key."
you must. Where I'm going, I won't need it."
are you going?" Eve asked, her eyes not moving from the Amulet.
is not important. Please, Eve, take it. I want you to have it." She held
the Amulet out to Eve, who gingerly took it. They embraced, and both women
I really must go."
Adena, keep in touch."
will, if I can." Adena brushed a tear from her cheek and smiled warmly at
her friend. She started to exit the room and turned around. "Good-bye,
dear friend," she said.
hope you find your happiness."
waved and left the castle. This time, she realized, she would never
* * In a Deep Blue Funk * *
arrived at Iffley's castle in record time. She patted Terra on the nose and
gave her a cube of sugar. She crossed the drawbridge and entered the castle.
She found Iffley still cleaning up the study. It almost looked normal, except
for the extra layer of sand on everything. She hated to interrupt him, but she
knew that if she did not leave now, she never would.
take me back to T'mir."
Adena, I have a lot of work that--"
Iffley twirled the Sceptre, he was getting more imaginative, and teleported
them to the Casablanca. The couple boarded the satillite ship and took
off. Iffley again admired the power of the new mini-ship. The pair rode in
silence, and within minutes, they approached the mother ship.
hanger bay of the Xanadu loomed above them. The communications officer
contacted the mothership. On the viewer, a bright beam of green light rapidly
approached the satillite ship. "Tractor in eight seconds." Eight
seconds passed and the tractor contacted. It swiftly drew the ship inside the
hangar. Iffley nodded approvingly at the other two satillite ships in the
hangar. The Maltese Falcon, painted in gold, complemented the silver of
the African Queen and the red of the Casablanca. They exited the
hangar bay and trekked to the bridge.
sat in his commmand chair, feeling one with his ship. The ship lurched with
the extra speed of the Starlight Drive, and she sped on her way homeward.
* * Twice in a Blue Moon *
hours later, the Xanadu established a routine orbit around T'mir. The
Casablanca returned Iffley and Adena to Yorkshire. Not wanting to
disturb Jonathon and Asiel, Iffley did not announce his return.
raced up the stairs--Iffley following a close second--and entered her bedroom.
The crest that Iffley wore around his neck still bothered her; she wondered
how he could have gotten it. She dug through her Christmas presents, which she
had carelessly not put away, and emerged with a red box. She took off the lid
revealing some rings and coronets, the gift that Iffley had taken from the
picked up a coronet, "Yes, Iffley, this is how we intended the twins to
contact us." She put the crown on the head and placed one of the rings on
her fingers. She touched the latter item with the former. A delicate melody
sounded and three wispy shapes appeared. "Blue, dearest, I am
ready." The largest shape nodded.
Iffley, and Kyan and Kirstie. They are my family without their corporeal
forms. Bluemind. Bluespirit. Bluemotion. Blue is all that he ever was. And
now, I must join him." She leaned over and picked up a silver ring with a
clover-shaped jade on it. "Take this, it will bring you good luck."
She hugged him and kissed him on the cheek. "It is time. Suralio, I hope
that you will find your happiness as I have found mine. Good-bye,
Suralio." She stretched out her hand and touched Bluespirit. Her body
seemed to dim, as if all of her life was being drained out of it, and she
slumped to the floor. A fourth shape appeared and waved to Iffley. The entire
family then vanished.
gently gathered up Adena's corpse and carried her downstairs. He entered the
laboratory and placed her body in the super-cooled freezer. Should Adena ever
want to return--if it was possible--her body would be waiting for her. He
kissed her delicately on the cheek and closed the door, sealing her body in
the frigid environment. He stared at her cooling body through the frosted
window, "Well, Adena, I hope that you are truly happy now."
| ||© 1985, ||K. Blaire, L. Charles, D. Conrad, Enad the Great, A. Mann, J. Pierce, B. C. Randolf, and T. G. Taft|