• Chapter Seven:
    My eyes fluttered open, and a women that looked a lot like Haven, but about twenty years older, was by my side. I gasped, almost calling her Haven. She was wearing a sleeveless dark red dress that covered her feet, and her hair was pulled back in a sleek ponytail.
    “It’s ok, child,” The woman put a cold cloth on my forehead, “You just had a fever, and fainted. Your fever was probably caused by stress.”
    “W-who are y-you?” I asked, “W-where am I?”
    The woman smiled, “My name Mimiki, I’m Haven’s mother. One of the heads of this forest. You are Shay, right?”
    I tried sitting up, but Mimiki stopped me, “Yeah, I’m Shay, I looked at my marking, it was black. I gasped again, “My mark! It’s black!”
    Mimiki grabbed my hand, “That’s what happens when you get sick, your mark turns black. That’s how it works.”
    “What happens if it turns white?” I asked out of curiosity.
    “It means you’re dying.” Mimiki said, “Are you hungry? I made everyone sandwiches. I think you should eat.”
    I sat up on my own, “Sure, but you still haven’t answered my second question, where am I?”
    “In Haven’s room,” Mimiki said, then squinted, as if she was thinking, “Peanut butter and blackberry jam, got it.” She walked away.
    How’d she know that my favorite sandwich was peanut butter and blackberry jam? Did she read my mind? And if she did, why am I not surprised? Why am I asking questions? I shook my head, then there was a knock. I looked up, Haven, Toby, Marlo, Sami, and Tahlia were at the door. They all rushed in.
    Tahlia, Marlo, and Sami crushed me in a hug, “Oh, Shay!” Marlo squealed, “When you passed out, everyone freaked. Well, expect for Haven, she immediately knew what to do.” She shot a smile at Haven.
    “Your mark’s black,” Tahlia examined my hand.
    I shook my hand away, “Mimiki told me that when you get sick, your mark turns black.” I looked at Tahlia’s puzzled look, “Mimiki is Haven’s mom.”
    Haven joined the conversation, “Yeah, my mom’s cool. Guess you found out she reads minds. She’ll be back any minute with your lunch. And you guys are staying here.”
    As Haven finished, Mimiki walked back in, a sandwich on a plate in her hands, she gave it to me, “Eat up,” she commanded. I did as she said, I was starving. It took about twenty minutes to eat my sandwich, I savored each bite.
    Toby was quiet; he stood away from the rest of us. I began to think that he was still mad at me for shooting water at him, or he doesn’t like being the only guy. Lately I can’t understand that boy. Some of his hair fell over his eyes like bangs, and he didn’t wipe it back, he usually would, letting it stick up making him another inch taller.
    I glanced over at him, “Toby?” I called his name; I walked over to him, “What’s wrong? You seem, well, quiet.”
    Toby shrugged, “I freaked when you fainted. I thought you were sicker than you actually were. I don’t think I know what I’d do if you left, ya know, permanently.”
    I stared at him; it was if he cared about me, more than just a friend, almost like, he loved me or something. I shook that thought out of my head, me and Toby? Not possible. We’re like brother and sister since we’re both only children. I sighed and turned back to Mimiki.
    “What do we do now?” I asked, “Do we call our parents and tell them we found out about being the chosen ones?”
    Mimiki smiled, a small wrinkle formed at each side of her mouth, “I already called them, they seemed shocked.”
    I smiled, relived that I didn’t have to tell Mom, “Well, we’re only thirteen.”
    Tahlia looked at Mimiki, “You called my mom? That’s impossible.”
    “Oh, but it is,” Mimiki winked at her, “she wasn’t very reasonable, though.”
    Tahlia scowled, “That’s Mom for ya.” Then, crossed armed, she walked away, scowling to herself.
    “Ok, that was kind of awkward,” I said, trying to lighten up the mood, but Mimiki didn’t seem upset, “Now what do we do, Mimiki?”
    Mimiki smiled again, “We move you all in and get ready to start training your new powers.” She took me out of the room, since everyone else had left, “Now, are you ok? Are you feeling better?”
    I nodded, “I think I got sick since I was under a bunch of stress. But now that our parents know where we’re are, I feel less stressed. But, we still have to find Johnny.”
    Mimiki looked puzzled, “Who is this Johnny boy?”
    I sighed, “Johnny’s our best friends, he’s also Marlo and Sami’s twin brother. He went missing and his backpack was near the woods. So, we immediately knew he was taken here.”
    Mimiki’s smiled went away, “Does this boy have a birthmark? In the shape of a crown?” Her gaze was toward Marlo and Sami.
    Marlo looked at her, “Um, yeah. On his forehead, that’s why he wears his head long. So no one sees it and make fun of him about it.”
    Mimiki’s face went dark, “This isn’t good,” she muttered. She sighed, looking at us, “This Johnny boy isn’t your brother. He’s the long lost evil prince Mototo.”
    Everyone stared at Mimiki, who began rubbing her hands.
    “That’s not true,” Marlo muttered, and then began shouting, “You’re lying! That can’t be true! He looks just like us! He’s our brother!” She dropped to her knees, panting, “That…can’t be true. It…can’t be.”
    Mimiki sighed, “But it is. When an evil prince is born, they give him away until the chosen ones have been discovered. It’s been like that since the beginning of these woods. The woods are bigger than you realize. There are five sections, the western area, the eastern area, the southern area, the northern area, and finally, the home of the royal family.”
    Haven added, “The royal family hasn’t been always evil, hundreds of years ago, there was a good and pure king. He treated his people with such kindness, so did his queen. But, one day, she gave birth to a baby boy. This boy was very wicked and evil, but the king and queen were so kind that they couldn’t give their child away. Finally, when the prince got the kingdom, he locked away his parents and ruled the kingdom with a cruel force.”
    “And when the prince died, every hundred years, a new prince is reincarnated,” Mimiki cut in, “and that means a new group of chosen ones are needed. They control the elements of nature and protect everyone, and bring down the evil prince.”
    “If each time the ‘evil prince’ is taken down, why hasn’t the peace come back to the kingdom?” Sami asked.
    “They say it won’t come back until the king and queen are freed.” Haven said.
    Tahlia said, “But they were locked up hundreds of years ago, they should be skeletons by now.”
    Mimiki laughed, “It’s rumored that the queen charmed them to have eternity. But, yet, I wonder why they didn’t just use their magic to free themselves.”
    It grew silent, we were more than just a group of kids with powers called chosen ones; we were protectors of a magical kingdom. It was actually scary.
    Mimiki smiled, “Yes, it is scary, but I believe that you can do it. You won’t be alone. There is another group of chosen ones. They don’t have powers like you, but they have great strength. And I think they are about your age.”
    Marlo looked puzzled, “Why are kids doing this?”
    Mimiki shrugged, “Who knows.” Then, she blinked, “We have to go, now.” She rushed out of the room, we trailed after her.
    “Mom, what’s wrong?” Haven asked as we followed, “Did you see a vision?”
    “We need to get to the hut,” Mimiki said, “something terrible happened. But I couldn’t see what. That’s why we need to hurry.”
    Everyone began running, and Mimiki held up her dress so she wouldn’t trip. I didn’t know what was happening, but I guess it was serious.
    We ran outside, and there was a stone hut near Haven and Mimiki’s house. It looked like it was made out of the same stuff my kitchen’s counters. Mimiki ran into the opening of the hut, the rest of us stayed outside.
    “Mom,” Haven muttered.
    Then, there was an explosion from inside of the hut, and purple lights shot out of the windows and the opening that was the door. Glass littered the ground that was near the windows.
    “Mom!” Haven ran inside, we followed her.
    Wooden furniture lay broken on the floor. Dust was everywhere, and pieces of ceramic were everywhere. But Mimiki was gone.
    “Mom! Mom! She’s gone!” Haven fell to knees, tears fell off her face.
    Mimiki was gone, but where did she go?