• Sheldon tucked the book under his arm as he headed out into the stormy night. He was to meet them at the Cathedral of Wizardry. This time was different, the mage had begun making his preparations for war at the bidding of his master. Now that evil had once again entered the land, the Cathedral drew on ancient power from the Wizards of old. It was going to be a long night. With everything else going on he knew that to use magic could be fatal for himself if not for everyone else as well. He pulled his cloak close about him as the wind and the rain whipped at him from all sides, several times he nearly lost his footing only to find it again before he could tumble. At long last, with the moon high above him, he reached the bridge. Due to ancient magics created to prevent the Cathedral from falling into enemy hands, the bridge was not stable. Knowing this, Sheldon took a deep breath at the edge of the bridge just before stepping onto it, muttering under his breath a brief prayer to the gods, he ran with all his strength as quickly as he could. With every step, the bridge disappeared behind him so there was no means of retreat, if he was too slow he would fall to his death. He shut his eyes and quickened his pace and at last stood on solid ground. He looked around him, then back at the bridge, “HA! Beat you for now you sorry old thing!” he exclaimed with a triumphant cry, then hastily turned back to the Cathedral and walked resolutely inside. He waved his hand and lit the torches on all sides of the entry way, they were already waiting for him.
    “Dad! I was so worried about you, we were afraid that we’d have to deliver the child despite your instructions.”
    Sheldon shook his head, “That would not have been good.” He walked over to where Nestrah was sitting in the middle of the grand hall, and took her hand in his, “Are you alright dear?”
    She nodded weakly, “Yes, I’m ready to do whatever needs to be done.”
    Sheldon nodded and opened his book, then placed his hand on her forehead, mumbled a few words and she was gone. Her world had shifted into oblivion. Orinsar stood behind his wife, his hands resting gently on her shoulders, her head against his belt. Sheldon read the spell from the book and as Orinsar watched in awe and wonder a bubble formed of silvery blue light, slowly the form of a baby could be made out inside the bubble, as he read the last words of the spell there was a blinding flash of silver light and then it was gone. The spell book hung in midair for several seconds and then dropped with a loud thud causing Orinsar to jump. He quickly and quietly picked his wife up and cradled her in his arms. He carried her outside to the edge of the now nonexistent bridge, spread his massive brown wings, and flew off into the night.
    Upon arriving at their home, he laid his wife on the bed and sat down at his desk. He took out a quill, some ink, and his journal and began to write as tears made large splotches on the parchment.
    “ Nox Noctis Despero
    Dear Journal,
    Having shouldered the burden of Nestrah bearing a child, Father informed us that we will not be permitted to raise her as our daughter. She will be raised by another just as Nestrah was. What this means, I can only guess. She will be the child talked about in prophecy who will destroy the works of the mage, or we will find that once again we have been fooled. In either case I have lost both my father and my daughter. My father to save my daughter and my daughter to save us all. May the gods be with my daughter!”
    Permissum Spes Non Profero”