The Wizard's Descendant Part 2/2 By Mari
The Wizard's Descendant Part 2/2 By Mari *DO NOT READ THIS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ PART 1! LINK IN COMMENTS!*
Juniper tried to shake off the memory of Ambrose. He seemed nice enough, but he asked too many questions, and nearly made her give away her and her mom's secret.
Cass had always told her not to tell anyone about their magic.
"Otherwise, they'll come running with their torches and pitchforks," she had said.
He hadn't figured out anything, so why did Juniper feel like something bad was going to happen?
She shuddered and continued walking back to the cottage.
"Alright, Juniper. I'm going to teach you how to summon an item," Cass said later that day. Juniper was right next to her. They stood just outside the cottage.
"First, pick an item."
"How about my shoe?"
"Which one? That's important."
"The left shoe to that pair of boots you bought me, the leather ones with the metal buckles."
"Ok, now imagine where you left that shoe."
"Don't tell me, just imagine it in your head."
Juniper imagined her closet.
"Now, picture the shoe. Include details. The more specific, the better."
Juniper closed her eyes and conjured an image of her left shoe. She could see the smoothness of the leather to the shine on the buckle to the rounded toe.
"Now say 'veritie' and imagine it zooming towards you."
"Veritie," Juniper said confidently.
She opened her eyes, expecting to see a boot zooming towards her, but nothing was happening. "Is it supposed to take this long?" she asked.
Cass shook her head. "Maybe you didn't actually leave it in the closet? If you imagined the wrong place, that would affect it."
Juniper wasn't convinced. "You try, then."
Cass held out her hand and said "veritie". A boot came crashing through the window, shattering the glass, and landed in Cass's outstretched hand.
Cass opened her mouth to say something, but then stopped. She froze, her eyes darting around.
"Hide," she whispered.
"What? Why?" Juniper asked.
Cass turned towards her. She wore an expression of anger that Juniper had never seen on her before. "Just do it!" she hissed. "Now!"
Juniper gulped and scurried behind a nearby bush. She pushed some of the leaves aside and peered through the gap.
"Miss Cassandra Griffin?"
Several men stepped out from behind the trees. They wore identical uniforms and had large, bulging muscles.
"That's me," Cass said.
The men stepped closer. One of them moved to the front of the group and held up a scroll, reading it aloud.
"By order of Mayor Fenris Goldsberry, Cassandra Griffin is under arrest for the practice of witchcraft and black magic. She will be tried, and if found guilty, burned at the stake."
Juniper tensed her muscles and prepared to jump out to stop them, but she found that she was unable to move. Some strange force was holding her in place.
Meanwhile, the men were getting closer and closer to Cass. Juniper opened her mouth to protest and discovered that she could not speak.
Why isn't she protecting herself? Juniper thought furiously.
Through the gap, she could see Cass making subtle movements with her fingers and mouthing unidentifiable words. Cass was the one holding her in place and preventing her from speaking.
She was trying to protect her by keeping the men from noticing her, but to her own detriment. She was defenseless.
Juniper watched helplessly as the men hit her mother over the head and dragged her away.
The enchantments keeping her in place lifted after Cass passed out, but Juniper still found it difficult to move or speak. A heavy feeling settled into her stomach. There wasn't much time.
She pushed herself to her feet and followed the men.
Fenris paced the deserted town square. He held out his hand and formed a ball of energy, watching as the blue light flickered in his hand.
His men were back within the hour. They were dragging an unconscious woman behind them. Fenris approached them and examined the woman.
"Release her," he told them.
They dropped her at his feet. Her purple dress was ragged and torn from the journey, her flowing chestnut hair entangled with leaves and twigs.
He reached out and pushed her hair aside, exposing the back of her neck. A small birthmark in the shape of a crescent moon was imprinted on her skin. It was her.
Cassandra Griffin, his former apprentice, and the witch he had been hunting for nearly two centuries.
"Is she the one you're looking for, Mr. Mayor?" one of them asked.
Fenris nodded. "Gather some kindling and rope. We must act quickly."
Meanwhile, a crowd of villagers had gathered closeby. Their faces were confused and frightened.
"Civilians!" Fenris announced. "We have discovered a witch among us! Watch as we burn this foul creature at the stake!"
Juniper had lost the men, but she could easily follow their footprints as she made her way through the woods.
The tree trunks got slimmer and the roof of leaves got thinner, allowing more sunlight to poke through.
Juniper was able to see a line of houses in the distance. They had taken Cass to the village?
The woods ended, giving way to a cobblestone street. It felt strange and bumpy under her feet, not at all like the smooth dirt of the forest.
A voice rang out, echoing off the houses. Juniper crept forward and crouched behind one of the houses, peeking her head out.
A man stood out in the center of the town. He was addressing a small crowd.
"Civilians! We have discovered a witch among us! Watch as we burn this foul creature at the stake!"
Resting at his feet was an unconscious body, her wrists and legs bound. Her dark brown hair covered her face, but Juniper was able to recognize her mother.
The man flicked his wrist, and suddenly, Cass's eyes snapped open. It seemed too well-timed to be coincidental.
Juniper peered closer at the man's hand and saw blue sparks flickering between his fingertips. She had seen the same thing happen when Cass was doing magic. There was only one explanation.
The man was a sorcerer as well.
He dragged her by the collar of her dress, stalking towards Juniper. His eyes held a determined satisfaction.
Juniper jerked her head away as he got closer and closer, eventually stopping at a wooden pole that stuck out of the ground. He was barely eight feet away from her.
If he looked down, she would be discovered.
"I've been looking for you ever since you escaped," he hissed to Cass, so only those within close proximity could hear. "You shouldn't have left. Things wouldn't have been as painful for you."
"You took me from my family and kept me as a slave, Fenris," Cass replied, her voice equally quiet.
"I taught you everything you know. You were taught by one of the most powerful wizards of all time, and how do you repay me? You left me to die!" he growled at her. "You tried to kill me!"
"I wish I had succeeded."
"You'll pay now," he said as he tied her to the pole. "You can't do magic with your hands tied."
"I could expose you. I could tell everyone what you are," Cass hissed.
"They won't believe you. All they'll see is a raving lunatic and their trustworthy mayor."
He continued securing her to the pole. "I've waited for this for so long.
I heard rumors that you were in this area, so I moved here and feigned illness, knowing that my wife, Selene, would do anything to try and save me.
She found you, as I knew she would, because you knew she was in need. You let her find you. I bewitched her into trading our first born child for the antidote.
I knew you always wanted a child, but after the... experimentation, you were left unable to bear children, so I knew you would give in.
Selene gave birth to one more before she died, so I wouldn't miss it."
"You don't deserve Juniper!" Cass growled.
Fenris continued as if she hadn't said anything. "My son, Ambrose, encountered her in the woods. She told him exactly where she lived, and he told me."
Juniper brought her hand to her mouth. Ambrose sold her out?
"Unfortunately, she was never able to find your house again. You had once again escaped me."
"A simple charm," Cass muttered. "I knew she would come back. They always do. So I put up a temporary spell so no one who did not already know the location of the house could find it."
"But you took it down," Fenris said gleefully. "And here we are."
Juniper was finding it difficult to process this. She was adopted. She was not truly Cass's daughter. No wonder she wasn't able to do magic. She was the daughter of an average villager.
Was anything she had been told actually true?
The villagers began placing kindling all around Cass, who looked quite worried. There was no way she was getting out of this one.
Juniper racked her brain for a solution. What could she do? She wouldn't be able to untie all of the knots before someone stopped her.
She could step out and plead for Cass's release, but she doubted that the villagers would listen to a random fifteen year old.
Before she knew it, the kindling surrounding Cass had been lit, and the fire was quickly spreading towards her.
Cass was trying to hold it together, but her panic was evident through her rapid breathing and teary eyes.
Cass never cried.
"NO!" someone screamed. Juniper soon realized it was her.
She stood up and stepped out in front of Cass. Her body was teeming with energy. She held out her hand as red sparks flew aross her fingers.
Her feet slowly lifted off the ground, her hair floating outwards.
Maybe she wasn't the daughter of Cassandra Griffin, but that was alright, she realized, because she was the daughter of Fenris Goldsberry, one of the most powerful wizards of all time, and magic flowed within her veins.
Fenris looked up at her, his face etched with terror. "Selene?" he whispered. "But, you're dead. I killed you..."
"Try again," Juniper hissed.
His face hardened. "Juniper."
She spun around and thrust her arm towards the burning pile of kindling. A wave of water appeared out of nowhere and extinguished the fire. With a snap of her fingers, Cass's bonds broke.
She joined Juniper up in the air.
Juniper summoned a huge ball of energy, the magic warm and electric between her fingers. She fired it at Fenris, who blocked it easily with a flick of his hand.
She fired another, and another, and another. All deflected. Panic began to set in.
Then Fenris's attack began. A blue stream of energy flowed from his hands, heading straight for Juniper.
Cass met his attack with her own stream of purple, her face tense with concentration.
Juniper added on, and together, they slowly pushed his attack closer and closer to him. Cass collapsed to the ground, evidently drained for the time being.
Juniper gritted her teeth. She wouldn't let him win.
She added more and more fuel to the attack, until it finally reached Fenris with an explosion of light.
When she was able to open her eyes, she saw that he was reduced to a scorch mark on the cobblestone.
Juniper’s head felt like it was being pounded by a hammer and everything looked fuzzy, but she managed to make it safely to the ground.
“JUNIPER!” She spun around. Ambrose was running up to her. His face was flushed, his hair stuck up in all directions.
“I’m-so-sorry-I-didn’t-know-he-would-do-that-this-is-all-my-fault-please-forgive-me!” he blurted in one breath.
“It’s alright, Ambrose. I forgive you. After all, you are my little brother.” She wrapped an arm around his shoulders. Then she let go and helped Cass up from the ground.
“Juniper, I’m sorry, I didn’t tell you-”
Juniper made a ‘sh’ sound. “I love you, Mom,” she said firmly.
Cass smiled and sighed with relief.
“But I think we need to modify a few memories.” She gestured to the crowd. Half of them were staring at Cass and Juniper with wide-open mouths. The other half had fainted and were collapsed on the ground.
It’s been five years since Juniper learned about her true parentage and saved my life.
We’ve left the cottage, and now we travel the world, helping people whenever we can. We sightsee and meet new people and try new things.
We both agree that it’s a huge improvement from our life at the cottage.
Occasionally we visit Ambrose back at the village. He has not inherited his father’s powers, nor his temperament, thank goodness. He always begs to let him come with us, so we have promised to take him on one of our trips after he finishes school.
Juniper has learned so much. She has already surpassed me in her powers, but I knew that was coming, considering who her father was.
Despite this, she has grown into a beautiful, compassionate, and brilliant young woman, and I could not be prouder of her.
I hope you guys appreciate this because now I only get five and a half hours of sleep tonight T-T Thank you for reading! -Mari <3 Edit: I forgot to mention this before, but @fawkes and I have been posting some things on the Inky and Izzy fan page, so go check it out! (@inky_and_izzy)