moon Marten van de Sanden

This is part of a very ambitious project, in which I'm trying to write a book size story. I have a lot to learn about writing, so it will probably take some iteration before I get it right. This time around I have learned that, although I had a pretty long outline, I still need to think a bit more about how the magical world works in my story, because it accidently began to ressemble the Kim Harrison magical world a bit to much. Also I am not entirely sure about the back story.

It is a fantasy story, written in first-person narrative, about a male witch. I want the story to really focus on the personal growth and experiences of the main character and the people surrounding him. Of course he is in a kind of special situation, but this is just to challenge him ;).

Mostly the story centers about witches, vampires and demons. But I also want to delve into a lot of the magical history and philosophy in this fictional world.. I'm not sure about demons yet though..

In this story both sexes can be witches. This is because as I see it, a witch is just a person who can do magic. It would be strange to have separate names for men and women magic doers.

Why vampires? Because they are so wonderfully tragic! They are the ultimate two sided character. Beautiful yet terrible, immortal yet strangely vulnerable, passionate yet soulless. They are powerfull and seductive.. Attractive and dangerous! I really like to explore this in a story :).

I'm not entirly happy with the first two pages of the story. The backstory sounds a bit lame to me. Also I want to add some more detail to the descriptions of the surroundings and the people in them.

Also, I just came to realize that the name Richard Anthony Le Fay resembles that of Anton LaVey, who was founder of the church of satan. Although I write about demons, I don't know if I want to associate the story with this. So a name change might be in order..

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Chapter One

It was one of those days in which you where wondering if it would ever stop raining. Not that I minded the rain, actually I liked it. I was sitting in a train from London to Edinburgh, enjoying the relaxing sound and refreshing smell of the rain through the slightly open window. It was warm in spite of the rain and this made for a exquisite combination.

I was in a good mood, even the children screaming for ice cream, a few rows back didn't really bother me. I felt at peace. I loved feeling like this, I wished I had the chance to feel like this more often.

Staring out the window, trees and bushes flying by, I thought about the past few months. Just over two months ago it was all completely different. I was finishing my masters in Theoretical Witchcraft and I had a hard time of it.

I did my final project about aura storing techniques and it didn't go to well. I was sure my theory was sound, but apparently I had been wrong. Not that it mattered gradewise, research is research, even if it doesn't really work in the end. But that didn't mean I hadn't worked my ass of trying to find out what the problem was. Staying up complete nights trying different approaches. I even called one of my professors once in the middle of the night, when I thought I had a breakthrough. I had been really stressed out at the time. How my roommate ever managed to coped with those last few weeks is beyond me.

She is a saint! I though, making a mental note to thank her for her understanding and kindness in my lesser days. I should have bought her a gift! I thought feeling guilty. Oh well, it's to late for that now. I had send her a postcard from Amsterdam, that was something at least.

While the train moved on, I thought back to the last two months. I had been traveling through Europe, visiting the magical highlights of the continent. Starting in France and then going through Belgium on to The Netherlands, Germany, Austria and Italy. After that by boat to Greece, where I stayed for the last two weeks. I loved Greece, somehow I felt right at home there, hiking in the sun, visiting all kinds of ancient ruins and meeting the friendly people on the beautiful sunny islands; smelling the ocean air. It was perfect, just what I needed after all the stress.

Just like my time as a student, this vacation had also ended and it was time for me to go back home. Besides, I couldn't have afforded to stay any longer. I had to go home and find a job. Now that I finished college it was time to say goodbye to my days as a student and enter the scary world of nine till five jobs and dominating bosses.


It was nice to clear my head in a foreign country, but I wasn't any closer to figuring out what I was going to do with the rest of my life, which I naively had hoped I would have by now.

My parents, both esteemed college professors, would really like it if I went and found myself a research position. They would like to see me make a career in science, but I wasn't sure the life as a scholar was what I really wanted. Don't get me wrong, I loved being a student and I am really glad that I got my masters, but I felt like it was time to find something new to do. Turn in a new direction. The only problem was that I had no idea what or where to start.

First things first though. I hadn't eaten anything since I left London, I was getting hungry. So I got up and excused myself, passing the witch who sat next to me in the isle seat. It had puzzled me for a while now, that she was reading a vampire fashion magazine. Usually only read by vampires or one of their shadows; for good reason I might add. The strange thing was, I was pretty sure she wasn't a vamp and I couldn't distinguish any bite marks on her neck, so she probably wasn't a vampire's shadow either. Unless of course her vampire master liked to bite in more concealed places. Anyway I didn't think she was a shadow. So the only other reason for her to read such a magazine was if she was a wannabe.

I never could figure out why someone wanted to be a vampire. Okay, the immortality bit had its perks but everything else was pretty gruesome. First of all there was the blood lust, the need to drink blood or effectively go insane. Then there was the fact that your body eventually would reject your soul, at which point you would turned undead. I shuddered to think, who I was without my soul. It was the only thing I could point at and say; “See this? That's who I am!”. In my point of view, if you lose your soul, you loose yourself and you would be better of being completely dead.

It is a dangerous road, being curious about vampires. I hope you're careful. I thought, when she got up to let me out. As I walked by I nodded to her.

It was a bit of a rough part of tracks the train was running on, so I started stumbling my way towards the diner car. Still, one of my closest friends was a vampire. Somehow, she had sworn off blood though, without going insane. Still the predator instinct probably survived somewhere inside her. That was a scary thought, though they probably wouldn't have let her into college if they weren't convinced she was harmless. It was quite an achievement, she was probably one of the highest educated vampires her age.

Although most caught up when they got older, as far as I know, no other pure blood vampire ever enjoyed a university education, within their first century at least. It's


much easier to be educated if you where 300 years old and who could blame them, why bother with it when you were still young? Fran was only about thirty, really young in vampire years. One couldn't help wonder what she could achieve in a few centuries more.

Three seats from mine I crossed the annoying ice cream crazed children. Their mother was promising them they would get some if they could just stop screaming for one more hour. Children.. I gave the girl behind them a wry smile. She shrugged and showed me her ipod. Good for her.

At the end of the compartment, with his back to the wall, sat a middle aged upper class witch. A real English gentleman, wearing a tweed jacket and a bowler hat. In his jacket pocket actually was a golden chained watch. Is he for real? He probably would have fitted better in one of the old Victorian style rooms at trinity college London, teaching magical history classes or something. Who knew, maybe he was a colleague of my parents. He seemed to be absorbed in an old leather bound book. I couldn't see a title, but it looked very ancient.

Two cars down I reached the diner car. It was full of people and there was a long line waiting in front of the counter. Navigating my way between the eating and drinking people to the back of the line, I stood behind an awfully musky smelling man. He had a strong build, hairy arms and could definitely use a shave in the facial area two. Probably a were.

I looked around, werewolfs usually traveled in packs. Yeah, that looked like a pack of weres over near the door. They were talking to a rather harassed looking witch. Taking a better look I noticed, that it was the girl with the ipod. Probably changed her mind and wanted to escaped the torment of the screaming kids after all. Only to find herself being tormented by weres. She must have followed me. Maybe I should try to talk to her later, she was very attractive. Leather boots, long legs and a short skirt, green v-neck t-shirt, in which I remembered seeing some cleavage earlier. Deep dark brown hair that fell down to her shoulders. Her legs looked muscled and her ass looked amazing. Nice! I really should have a chat with her.

Someone opened the door of the compartment. Ah Sir Tweed has decided to join us too. It is a regular party out here. He moved over and joined the back of the line, that had considerable grown behind me already. I turned around and quickly bridged the gap between me and the rest of the line that had moved when I was looking around.

The were in front of me was already ordering. Two beef and two chicken sandwiches, one plate of sate and four beers. Definitely a were, they really liked their meat. He payed for it and headed to join his friends in the corner. A quick look told me that the girl had managed to extract herself from them and join the line behind the


English 'chap'.

“A cheese and lettuce sandwich and a black coffee please.”, I told the overweight middle aged women behind the counter. She was wearing a green apron and matching hat and she looked like she really needed a break. We should be in Leeds in forty five minutes, then she'd probably have a break.

“That all?”, she asked. I nodded and reached for my wallet.

“That'll be six fifty please.”. I gave her the money, which constituted a large part of my fortune. I really need to find a job soon!

I could probably loan some money from Liz, my roommate, she usually kept some emergency money tucked away, just in case. I wondered how she was doing, I hadn't seen or heard from her in two months, a lot of things could happen in two months. Maybe she split up from her boyfriend, never really liked him, a bit too self centered for my taste. What was his name? Joe or Sam or some other three letter name. Wouldn't be surprised if she already had another one, she was a good friend, but she tended to use up boy friends like they were toothpaste. Still, I hoped I was enough of an emergency.

“Thanks.”, I said to the woman when she handed me my change and I took my sandwich and coffee. Walking over to stand next to a window, I noticed Mr. Tweed and Ipod-girl were talking to each other. She was way to young for him, pervert.

The weres seemed to be getting a bit restless, like something ticked them off. They were probably fighting over who should eat the last of the sate or drink the last beer or who was the alpha male or some or territorial thing.

I looked out the window, it was dark, the sun had gone down while I was standing in line. I noticed that outside it actually appeared to have stopped raining. Miracles do happen, apparently. I stared out of the window for a while, just zoning out. It had been a long day and I was starting to get sleepy, maybe I'd take a nap after we passed Leeds.

All of a sudden there was some kind of commotion near the counter. Wondering what was going on, I turn in its direction and I was shocked to see that half the counter line had fallen to the floor and was lying there, motionless. Fearing for the worst, I quickly started over.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw that the girl with the ipod now lay in the hands of the english gentleman, who was easing her to the ground.

I found the closest and reached out to see if he was still alive. It was one of the weres and I was relieved to see he was still breathing. Deep heavy breaths, as if he was sleeping. Taking a better look around, it looked like all the fallen people were


sleeping. I was startled to see that now almost tree quarter of the people in the compartment had fallen asleep and since it felt like the train was slowing down, it probably was a good guess to think that this wasn't localized to only this compartment of the train. What the hell is going on?

Just a few feet from me the english gentleman was also falling asleep and suddenly my thoughts also began to cloud, like something very heavy was pressing down on them. Everything was getting sort of fuzzy and darkness masked my peripheral sight, my legs felt like they were turning into wax. What ever was making everybody else sleep was obviously starting to affect me too.

Panicking I jumped up from my crouch beside the were. As my higher brain functions started to shut down, instinct was taking over. All I knew was, that it was bad for a train full of people to all fall asleep in the middle of the day without an apparent reason. I started to run towards the door, what ever was going on, I needed to leave this room, fast. Maybe fresh air will help, I thought incoherently.

My degrading coordination caused me to stumble over someone and fall. Confused, I found myself lying on the floor, not really remembering why. Flashes of dreamlike imagery already beginning to present themselves.

It took some time to remember what I was trying to do, but after what seemed like an eternity I remembered that I was trying to reach the door. Slowly my body started to obey my commands. Slowly I managed to get to my feet again. Carefully moving across the compartment, stepping over sleeping bodies, towards the door, it looked like everybody was sleeping now.

Every body except for someone in the corner. “Richard Anthony Le Fay, “, he said, “don't make this hard on yourself, stop fighting my curse.”.

It's demon! I somehow knew. Where did he come from? How does he know my name?

I was leaning against the compartment door. Somehow the need to escape had fled me. Not knowing why, I slowly turned my head towards the demon. My brain seemed to slowly wakeup again, as if it was morning and I had just finished sipping a large cup of coffee over the morning paper. Had the demon failed to make me sleep? Had I somehow broken the curse?

I looked at the demon, scared out of my mind. Demons were bad news, if you encountered a demon, you would be dead soon. Or worse! What the hell was I doing here together with a demon!

The demon hesitated,“Why won't you fall asleep?”, he asked softly,looking worried but sounding more curious than anything else. Which had the effect of making him


twice as scary.

Huh?.. I don't know! “What do you want from us?”, I asked back, trying to hide my fear, “And how do you know my name?”, I added softer.

“I am here for you, Richard Anthony Le Fay.”, he said, slowly moving towards me.

Oh oh, I was demon fodder. “Me?”, I stammered, “what do you want with me?”. Why in Merlin's name me?

“I am not the one who wants something from you, Richard Anthony Le Fay, but I am here to take you to the ones that do.”.

Someone wants me? For the life of me, I couldn't figure out why someone would send a demon to get me. “What if I don't want to go?”, I asked having had enough of this and trying to think of a way out.

“If I can not get you to them, I am allowed to kill you.”, he simple stated.

Gulp! I had to think of something fast. If these people rather wanted me dead than fail to get me, my chances with them where probably not much better than with this demon. And those chances are not good at all! What the hell is going on, why do people want me dead? There must be some kind of mistake!

“What the hell do they want with me?”, I nearly screamed. How did you get rid of a demon anyway? You don't! Something inside me answered.

“I have had enough of this, I am not here to answer your pathetic questions, come here witch!”, he shouted and made a throwing motion with his right hand. All of a sudden some kind of invisible net like thing fell over me. Panicking I felt my energy levels rising. It was some kind of instinctive behavior. I was pulling energy from a nearby ley-line, but what could I do with it. If I didn't do something with it soon. It was going to burn me fast!

Ley-lines are lines of power. They flow over the surface of the earth. No one knows where they come from or why they are there, but they are. They are the most potent source of magical power in the world and at the moment my mind was connected to one of them. A particularly strong one by the feel of it. The problem was, a mind could only hold so much power, before it started to overflow. The excess energy needed to go somewhere and without my will directing it to some use soon, it would start to overflow and fry my nervous system like a telephone switchboard in a lightning storm!

The only problem was, I didn't know how to direct the energy towards such a goal. I had never drawn this much energy in before and I had never used it for anything so directly. There were charms and cursed that could be powered directly from line


energy, but I didn't know any of them. I had to figure out something soon though, because it was my only chance in hell to get away from this demon.

All I knew to do with it was to set a protection circle, but I couldn't do this without something to focus on and I had nothing to draw a circle with.

The demon made an even bigger yanking motion and I was pulled of my feet and fell to the floor. I tried to get up again, but I couldn't get my feet under me fast enough. The demon pulled again and I was sliding over the floor towards him. O shit! I don't want to die!

Panicking even more, I tried to find something to hold onto, anything that I could use to keep from getting closer to the demon. But it was no use, there was nothing to hold on to. Just empty floor between me and the freaking demon.

The demon just picked me up from the floor. I tried to kick it or hit it, but he was to strong, there was nothing I could do. He had me.

There was only one thing I could think of to do and that was to grab the demon with my one free hand and just shove out all the line energy I could channel through the demon. I had no idea what, if any, effect it would have, but the magical energy would want to ground itself back to the earth, so either he somehow had to retain it or he had to channel it to earth or get fried. What every he choose to do, it probably would at least distract him. But this was all theory, I never had done anything like this. Maybe I'd just annoy it and it would kill me, or maybe I would kill it instead, anything or nothing could happen, who knew, but at least I tried something.

Okay, it's now or never. I felt the energy flowing from the line to myself and as fast as I could, I directed it right into the demon in front of me. It was excruciatingly painful like it burned straight through me leaving smoldering energy channels behind. All my hair was standing on end and I had a strange awareness of someone speaking to me.

I screamed out in pain, but it was working. I had taken the demon of guard, he couldn't handle all that raw energy so fast. I barely noticed, but he let me go and I fell with a bump on the floor.

The demon stumbled backwards, shaking his head, but seemingly regaining control really fast. Oh no, he was going to come back, I needed to get out of here. I tried to stand up, but I couldn't I was to exhausted from the enormous amount of energy I pull through myself. I hoped I didn't do any permanent damage.

As the demon started to near again, I was wrecking my brain, but I just couldn't think of anything that would save me. I guess that Liz could keep enjoying the apartment by herself, I wasn't getting back anymore, so much for thanking her for her



Helplessly laying in a puddle on the floor, the demon almost upon me again, fear racing through me, in the corner of my eye I saw the ipod girl waking up.

Disoriented she looked first at me and then the demon. Shock on her face, she turned to look at the english gentleman laying besides her. That's when the demon got between me and them and I lost visual contact. Al of a sudden I felt really guilty for getting them involved, when I realized the demon was after me, which made it my fault that he was here. He wouldn't kill them, would he? He would have already done so, he was obviously under a contract not to kill anyone but me, wasn't he? I really hoped he was!

The demon somehow had gotten hold of my ankle and was picking me up, upside down. Everything hurt as I straighted out, swinging by my left leg. The world was moving so badly that I was losing my orientation and everything was starting to get blurry. But I didn't want to die, so with all my strength I kicked out with my free leg. But it was no use, I couldn't reach him. I hoped at least, that I was distracting him long enough to let the girl escape.

Then something unexpected happened. The demon started to slowdown and act all weakly. He dropped me on the floor... Again! As soon as I hit the floor, I started to scramble to get away from him. But it didn't matter, the demon had fallen over and lay panting on the floor.

Then I saw the ipod girl again, round eyes looking between me and the demon. Behind her stood the english gentleman. They saved me! I loved them, they saved my life!

The english gentleman suddenly seemed to wake up out of his contemplation and quickly got something out of his pocket and started to circle the demon, bend, drawing a circle on the floor with a piece of chalk.

The girl was walking over to me, “Are you alright?”, she asked.

Good question. I moved my arm, to test if it still worked. So far so good. I moved a leg. Still okay. I tried to sit up. That went well too. “I guess I am.”, I answered surprised.

“That was quite a performance you gave there. Not many people can say they went up against a demon and walked away unscathed.”, she said looking impressed, ”That's assuming you can still walk of course.”.

I looked around and a question hit me, “How come we three are the only ones awake and the rest is still sleeping?”.


The english gentleman had also walked over, after invoking a protection circle around the demon. “What you really need to ask yourself is, how come you didn't fall asleep at all?”, he said.

I was to tired and confused to take it all in, so I just asked, “Are the other people, the sleeping ones, are they alright?”

“They look fine, the demon probably was told not to harm anyone else.”, the english man answered, extending me his hand, he added, “By the way, my name is Timothy Wright.”.

“Richard Le Fay.”, I said, shaking his hand.

“And this lovely girl is my assistant, Ellis Green.”, he added.

“Pleased to meet you, how is your leg?”, she said with a worried expression, “He was swinging you around pretty hard.”, she added, nodding towards the demon.

Slowly getting up I answered, “My leg is fine, I think. Thanks for the help, both of you! Now I just wished I knew what the hell was going on?”.

“We might be able to help you with that, but first we need to banish this demon and then we need to get out of here. The rest of the people will probably not wake up for another hour, but someone will probably come to investigate a halted train at some point.”, he said, walking back towards the demon.

Walking with him, I said, “Shouldn't we call the police or something? I mean shouldn't the demon be arrested or something?”. The demon looked strangely vulnerable, lying on his back on the floor, inside the yellow translucent bubble of the english gentleman's protection circle, panting like a wounded dog. He was wearing a dark blue suite with a white shirt. No tie, but in its place he was wearing a silver necklace with a black symbol hanging from it.

“Arrest a demon?”, Timothy laughed bitterly, “No the police can't deal with a demon. First of all, the demon would be much to strong for them to handle and second if they did manage to get him in a cell he would be gone when the sun comes up. Demons can't stay in this reality during the day.”.

“The demon didn't waste much time coming here then.”, I said, remembering the sun only just went down.

“No.”, Timothy said, looking as if this had some kind of significance.

“Lets please just banish the freaking demon and get the hell out of here, okay!”, ipod girl.. Ellis, said.

“We first have to wake him up though.”, Timothy asnwered, staring thoughtfully in front of him, the middle finger of his left hand on his lips. “You will have to wake


him up Richard.”.

“What! Wake him up? Why?”, I said, frightened.

“We can only banish him by telling him to leave.. we can't do that while he is unconscious.”.

Crap! “Why me, I don't know how to wake him up.”.

“Because you made him sleep in the first place. You will have to lift the curse.”

I made him sleep? I don't even know.. wait.. what, “Curse?! I used black magic to make him sleep? I don't even know how to do that!”. If I wasn't confused a minute ago, I was definitely confused now. I didn't make him sleep, not consciously anyway.

“I thought as much.”, Timothy said softly, “Fortunately this particular curse is not hard to reverse, because it's a temporary curse anyway and because it is imprinted on the one who performed the curse, you only need to do a generic release spell.”.

It was imprinted on me? Taking a few deep breaths, I slowly focusing my conscious inside. If it was, I should be able to feel the mark that it left on my aura. Expecting to find a soft humming sensation, I found that in this case it was much scarier, it was more or less like an ominous tang sound in the back of my mind. I was a bit surprised I didn't feel it before, it was quite annoying actually.

A little confused as to why it felt differently than the thousand other times I had an imprint on me, I took the mental token as a focusing object, concentrating on it hard and then willed it to be free of me.

Imprints were used all the time in every day magic, at least in every day university level magic. So I knew how to release one. Most people use a spell for this, but I always found it easier just to mentally convey my intentions to the imprint. The spell would have done exactly the same thing, because it was actually just a word bound to the same intention, by a form of magical conditioning, but I always was pretty good at projecting mental feelings and found that this was just as easy as concentrating on the words of the spell.

It worked, the demon began to wake up, first grunting and then, when he saw the circle, swearing. “You filthy witch, first you cursed me and now you trapped me!”, he said, pointing at me.

“He didn't do it on purpose.”, responded Timothy.

“And you tried to curse him first, you evil bastard!”, Ellis yelled at him, suddenly looking very angry.

The demon didn't even spare so much as one of his glowing red eyes on the two of them and only looked at me. He suddenly looked much more scary now he was awake


again. “You are the first witch to successfully curse me in 500 years. Oh, others have tried of course and all of them are dead now and so will you be when I'm finished with you!”.

Crap, I have a demon after me! And he is swearing to kill me... not that it makes any difference, he might as well have sworn to kiss me, for all it matters, and it would have been just as scary... come to think about it, maybe even scarier...

Timothy stepped between me and the demon, trying to get his attention. “Alanis...”, he said and then paused as if to collect his thoughts.

The demons name was Alanis?!

“I hereby banish you back to where you come from and I bid you not to return tonight.”, Timothy finished and the demon looked surprised at him and with a crack of decompressing air vanished.

“The freaking demon's called Alanis? What kind of name is that for a demon?”, I asked looking bewildered at Timothy.

He shrugged and touched his protection circle to dissipate it, “Never asked him about that.”.

He never asked him about that? What did he ask him then? “But apparently you do know him?”, I asked a little worried. So here was someone who seemingly dealt with demons on a regular basis. Did I say earlier that you could better stay away from vampires? Scratch that, if your choices where between demons or vampires, you should definitely pick the latter. Okay, you would probably become his daily tea time snack, but at least you would be alive.

“I have dealt with him before, but now is not the time for questions. I promise to try to answer your questions later, the first thing we need to do is to get out of here.”. He turned to Ellis, “Can you get him home? I really need to deal with something else right now.”.

“Of course, no problem boss!”, she answered, now sounding cheerful again.

Chapter Two

Mister boss man had vanished in an impressive show of teleportation skills and Ellis and I were climbing out of one of the trains doors. It was really dark outside, the only light coming through the windows of the train, barely lighting the ground besides the tracks.

“Where are we going?”, I asked Ellis, when I reached the ground.

“Home,”, she answered, landing beside me, jumping the last meters, “your home to be more precise.”.

I turned around and looked at her, she was very attractive, “Okay, fine. How are we going to get there? It's like 200 miles from here!”.

“Well, we could steal a car and drive there, or we could walk, or, I don't know, I could teleport us there, that might be quicker?”.

“You can teleport too?”, I asked curiously. I was kind of surprised that Timothy could do it, it's not very easy, I've never known anyone who could do it, and now she could do it too. Of course I've heard rumors about people who could do it, advanced professors, spies, heroes of old. Who the hell are these people?, I asked myself, but Timothy said that he would answer my questions later and for some reason I trusted him, so I didn't ask any further.

“Yes and so can you, after I teach you.”.

“You can teach me how to teleport?”, I ask incredulous, “You are going to teach me to teleport tonight?”.

“Keep your shirt on, no not tonight, tonight I'm going to assist you with it.”, she said a bit defensively, “Who knows, I might get to teach you later on though.”, she smiled at me, “First, lets find a quiet place and we'll be on our way.”.

Where we were standing, the rails ran through a thick forest, but a few hundred yards up we could see a small dirt road crossing leading into the trees. So we headed that way. It was really dark, but luckily Ellis had a small flashlight with her, which gave of enough light, that we didn't fall over the rather badly maintained road. We walked probably half a mile on the dirt road until we found a small sandy clearing with a small pond.

All the way we were quiet. I was just to tired and confused to think of anything to say and she didn't say anything either. But that was fine by me, I was just glad that it didn't start raining again and that no more demons showed up.

“This will do.”, she finally said, when we reached the clearing. Looking around she


found a small stick, which she used to draw a circle in the sand. “Okay I'm going to teleport us to your home.”, she said, “It takes an awful lot of energy to do this, so please, don't interrupt or distract me, because if I lose my concentration, it could be bad. Do you understand?”.

I nodded.

“Okay, then come over and stand next to me.”.

“should I hold your hand?”, I volunteer.

“No, please hold your hands to your self!”.

Okay.. I walked to her and positioned myself half a meter to her left in the circle.

Ellis gathered herself and murmured, “Here we go.”. Slowly I could feel energy starting to flow around us. She was collecting it, like a capacitor, to be used all at once, when the transportation spell was invoked.

For a long time we just stood there. After a while her hair started to move, as if an unfelt wind was washing through it. Then the air started to become static, I could almost visualize sparks coming out of her. All of a sudden, when some unseen threshold was reached, she invoked the circle and within a split second a dark blue sphere of energy was flowing around us.

I had never been inside someones else's magic circle before. It felt kind of suffocating, trapped, disconnected from the world, I didn't really like it.

She turned and looked at me and said, “This is not going to be easy for me, it needs an enormous amount of power and I need all my concentration to channel it, so once again, just in case, please stand still and don't do anything distracting.”.

“You won't get a peep from me.”, I answered, I didn't know what was going to happen, but I really didn't want something to go wrong and end up somewhere halfway hanging upside down in a tree with my left leg, where my right was supposed to be, or something, so I was going to be a really good boy.

“If you want to learn teleportation, you might want to pay attention to what you feel during transportation.”.

She took a few deep breaths and stood there for a minute or so, really still, then I felt the power starting flowing around me again. In what felt like ages, she absorbed huge amounts of energy, about a minute in, it began to get a bit scary. Deep unworldly shadows began to form on her face, her hair began to flow again. Her clothes were affected too, flapping in that strange wind. She even seemed to grow taller, her cheekbones seemed to get more pronounced. Slowly her protection circle began to give of light. It became brighter and brighter, until I couldn't keep my eyes open,


because the light hurt them to much. Still she was drawing more energy. How much is this going to take! I heard her panting, she seemed to be in pain. I wished I could help her somehow.

Then, all of a sudden, the energy flow stopped and two things happened simultaneously. I felt a floating sensation and all my sensations of the world seemed to merge to only one, and all of a sudden I was somehow aware of every molecule, chaotically moving in the magical circle. I could distinguish between the ones that belonged to my body and the ones that belonged to Ellis. They sort of hummed to me, mine just slightly higher in pitch than hers. Slowly I became aware of even more detail. I could feel the individual atoms inside all the molecules, small packs of protons and neutrons, so much space was between the atoms of the molecules they seemed like stars in the sky.

Time seemed to have slowed down, I could feel even finer things, but somehow place started to lose meaning at this level. Every thing seemed to be everywhere and nowhere at the same time. Somehow my perspective changed and although time had stopped things where moving again small strands of energy seemed to resonate to the song of life, an infinite number of them, interacting with each other as if they were dancing.

Somehow I knew that what I saw had nothing at all to do with space or time anymore. Everything seemed connected, only two kinds of strands remained, these, I knew somehow, encompassed everything, they were the base of all existence, its foundation and all it's building blocks at once, but I went even deeper, now the two strands seemed to form a circle and the concept of numbers was lost, now there was only unity. A complete state of simplicity, everything was the one and the one was everything and the one even seemed to be and not to be.

Somewhere I though, to be or not to be, that might be the question, but to be and not to be, that is the answer.

Together they formed all the great dualities, true and false, yin and yang, male and female, life and death, light and dark, love and hate, alpha and omega, matter and mind, the god and the goddess. These things where the foundation of everything above them, like a great upside down pyramid. Somewhere on its broad base was the world as we see, know, feel and hear it (with the four elements on the four corners of the pyramid?) and at its top there was the one and all (together forming the five points of the pentagram?). At the top, there was the I, everything was one, everything was me and I was everything.

Now we were back at the place where time had slowed down, somewhere halfway down the pyramid, the cross section, just before time and space started to matter


again, but they had no meaning here yet and somewhere I knew that a conscious choice was needed to be able to cross this divide.

It needed to be decided which possible time and place would be the one to be made real. Time is also a choice? We where going to the roof of my apartment, so I chose that location, I left the decision of time kind of blank, hoping that this meant now.

All of a sudden everything just stopped and the world turned dark. Then I opened my eyes and to my astonishment, I saw the familiar view of Edinburgh's castle. Exactly the way you would see it if you were standing on my rooftop. I stared at it for a long time before I realized my mouth was open. Next to me stood Ellis with an expression that seemed to be torn between exhaustion and pure astonishment. The latter undoubtedly was mirrored in my expression, even now I had closed my mouth.

This was the most profound thing that had ever happened to me. I couldn't even muster the feelings that were appropriate to feel, there just weren't any feelings or thoughts strong enough to describe what I should be feeling. As a substitution I was feeling completely numb.

“Are you completely crazy!”, Ellis yelled all of a sudden, “You could have killed us. Are you completely, utterly, out of your mind!”.

Huh, I didn't do anything! “What did I do? Oh wait, the decision thing?! I'm sorry, the moment was there and I knew that a decision needed to be made and I just sort of made it, we where planning to come here weren't we?”.

“You took control of the whole bloody act! How the hell did you do that?”, Ellis screamed almost hysterical now. She looked around her and noticed the circle was still there, “You freaking even transported the damn circle!”. She reached out to touch the circle and it vanished in an enormous flash, that seemed to light up the whole neighborhood. Apparently this shouldn't have happened, because it gave her such a scare, that she just stood there staring at the sky, with her mouth open.

That Timothy bloke better have really good answers, because I now was so utterly confused, that if at this very moment an ufo had landed on my roof, three green aliens had come out with a giant straw and had used that straw to suck the sun from the sky, I wouldn't have been surprised at all and have asked them if they wanted a cup of tea before they left to eat more stars.

Seeing as Ellis didn't seem to snap out of it any time soon and no aliens seemed to be landing on my roof anytime soon, I guided her to our roof door, that we had, not so much for teleporting visitors, as for flying visitors.

With a pang I realized that my backpack was probably still on the train, wherever that might be. I had lost all concept of time, as far as I knew everybody on the train


was still fast asleep. Lucky I had already dug up my keys and put them in one of the pockets of my coat... which was also neatly hanging next to my seat in the train, together with my passport and all of my money.. damn!

Ellis, apparently having shaken part of her shock, softly said, “Here, let me help you with that..”, and with a wave of her hand unlocked the door.

“Thanks.”, I said, not really surprised. Remember the aliens?

“The least I could do.”, she answered.

“If you have some time later on, I wouldn't mind if you'd teach me that trick.”.

“Only if you promise to use it only to break into your own house.”, she retorted absentmindedly.

Walking down the rickety stairs to my apartment, I wondered if my roommate would be home. It was the middle of the night, so she was probably sleeping, lets be quiet.

“Wrrrooowe?”, came from somewhere down the stairs.

“Anubis!”, I said, “You made your way home, I see.”. Anubis was my cat. He was a rather large black cat with white feet, he was thin but very strong and had remarkably long paws, which gave him the impression of a general, always in charge. Somehow the name Anubis seemed to suite him.

I've had him for a few years now. Just sort of started to show up at a certain point. Not just outside in the garden, but in my bedroom. Every morning I would wake up, with him snoozing at my feet. I always wanted to have a cat, so I just let him do what he liked. If I left the door open, he would usually eventually go outside, but the following morning he would always be back. At a certain point I gave him a name and started feeding him.

Interestingly enough he shows up, where ever I am. Even when I'm on holiday in Europe. I left him in Greece before I left for home, knowing he would somehow find his own way back and here he was. Nice kitty!

“Prrrr!”, he sad.

Having reached the bottom of the stairs I ask, “Is Charly home, Anubis?”.

“Rrrooww..”, that means no.

“She isn't? That's strange. Maybe she's visiting her parents or something..”. It's dark, so I make some light and walk into the small hallway.

“Mmoow?”, Anubis says while he rubs his back against her legs.

“Oh yes, of course, Anubis this is Ellis, Ellis this is Anubis, my cat.”.


“Uhm.. please to meet you Anubis.”, she says, apparently not used to talking to a cat.


“That's a really smart cat!”, she says seemingly coming back to her senses a little bit.

“Yeah, he is. Want a cup of tea?”, I ask, bending down to pat Anubis.

“Oh god yes please, I would love to!”, Ellis says gratefully.

Walking into the kitchen, pointing in the direction of the living room, I say, “Make yourself at home, while I'll put on the cattle.”.

We only have a small apartment. It's on the second story and has two bedrooms, a small kitchen and a reasonable spacious living room, all connected to a small hallway, with stairs going up to the roof and down to the front door. Oh, and there was the shower of course. The only cool thing about the apartment was the shower, because it was in a glass tower above the living room. It was only reachable by a ladder going through the ceiling, which was the reason why me and my roommate regularly tended to accidentally flash each other with private body parts. It took some time to get used to when I move in, but now its an inside joke that we keep score of on an old blackboard, which we hung on the wall next to the ladder just for that purpose. I'm in the lead by two points.

The kitchen has no windows and only has room for a fridge, a sink and a gas stove. I take the cattle out of one of the cupboards above the sink, fill it with water and put in on the fire. Then I look into the fridge. It's freshly stocked, so Charly can't be of for to long.

Anubis comes in and starts circling my legs, “So we're hungry are we? Had a good trip home?”, I ask.


I find some cat food in one of the lower cupboards and put it in a tray next to the fridge. Then I walk to the living room, where Ellis is sitting on the couch and go sit in the comfy chair opposite to her. We sit there for a moment in silence. I try to take stock of what has happened in the past few hours. Was it only a few hours, is seems much longer. I was attacked by a demon, then I was saved by a girl with an ipod and a gentleman in a tweed. If that wasn't enough I was teleported for 200 miles to the roof of my apartment, which gave me a hell of a spiritual experience. O yeah, and all my luggage and what is left of my money is still somewhere on a train, which might be anywhere now. Who knows how the hell I'm going to get that back..


Ellis doesn't look all that well, “Are you ok?”, I ask her.

She looks up, seemingly torn between what she is aloud to say and what she isn't. “It's Timothy, I'm worried he's in over his head.”, she finally says.

I consider it for a moment, “You know, I would love to know what is going on here.”, I say, trying to keep calm about it, I tend to pride myself on staying calm in weird situations, “A few hours ago I was attacked by a demon and for the life of me I can't figure out why. You and Timothy save my life and get me home. Somehow I don't think it's an accident that you were there. Now I have the feeling that we are waiting for Timothy, who promised to explain it all to me, but is there anything you can tell me about this in the mean time? Because I'm so confused about this, I can't even think were to start thinking about this!”.

She looks even worse now, as if she could start crying at any time, so I immediately start feeling guilty, I hold my head in my hands and say, “I'm sorry, I know you are scared for him, it's just... This is all so strange. I don't even know what he's doing and why you are scared for him. I don't even know if I should feel guilty about it or not. It obviously has something to do with me.”.

Anubis shows up, his paws ticking on the floor, satisfied licking around his face, he heads for Ellis and jumps onto the couch. It's a good sign, Anubis is usually a pretty good judge of character. Ellis reaches out gratefully and pets him. “I can tell you a few things, I guess, but for the most part it is not my place to tell you.”.

© Mart van de Sanden

goddess-symbolgod-symbol (C) Mart van de Sanden (mart.vd.sanden (at)