Note to all readers: This book is not filled with as much torture/ rape/ abuse as its predecessor, but it does carry quite a bit more magic, murder, ghost/otherworldly things, and even a bit of war. Hope you aren't too disappointed. (

-Lilyiia

From the Darkness Sequel to "When You Set a Heart on Fire"

Rebecca Jones

Chapter One

Kiela closed her eyes, picturing the land before her, smiling as she felt the power seeping into her veins. She turned to Reita, her cloudy brown eyes alight with joy. "It will be soon, Reita. Very soon."

Reita nodded, breathing in the air, her golden curls running across her eyes. "We have been waiting for this day so long. it hardly seems real that it is here."

Kiela smiled. "It is like a dream. My whole life has been working up to this day, this moment. I hardly know what I'm going to do when it's over."

Through the darkness they could hear a shuffling. "Loren?" Reita asked, peering into the shadows.

"Yes, it's just us. Proceed."

Reita held out her hand, waiting patiently as Kiela whispered, "Goodbye Mom. Wait for me in the next life." Then Kiela took Reita's hand and began whispering the incantation, her heart thumping in time with her good friend.

*****

Alys was sitting in her room, waiting for Alex to return when she felt it. It was like the earth was shaking, and she looked around curiously, meeting Cassandra's eyes. "Did you feel that?"

Cassandra nodded, looking up from her work. "Kiela's probably just up to some mischief again."

"You think she has the power to shake the earth?"

Cassandra shook her head. "I don't really know. She's been lifting things without ever laying a hand on them for so long that it doesn't surprise me anymore. She spends her time with a small band of Shaman people near the stream. Who knows what she's learned. Oh, there it is again."

Alex entered the room, his face white. "Alys, Cassandra, we need to leave this place as soon as we can. Kenneth and Leyla have come, as well as a band of their people. The West has fallen. There is some force destroying this land piece by piece. We need to get out of here before it reaches this place."

Alys and Cassandra looked at each other, running down the stairs. "This better not be Kiela's mischief." Alys shouted, as small bits of the walls began to fall down around them.

Cassandra nodded. "You're right. This had better not be her doing."

Alex looked around, frowning deeply. "Have you seen Goldferth? And where is Kiola?"

*****

Reita and Kiela let go of each other, watching the ground above them come to a slow stop. "What the Hell do you think you're doing?"

Kiela and Reita turned, confused. Kiela's lip curled up in disgust as she recognized the speaker. "What is this?"

Goldferth and Loren came running from the shadows, grabbing the newcomer. Goldferth smiled apologetically. "I couldn't let her die."

Kiela raised her eyebrows. "Oh? You could let both your parents die, as well as everyone else in the land, but you felt the need to save her?" She pointed at the girl, incredulous.

"She's the heir to the East, Kiela. The only living, legitimate heir on the Isle."

"Legitimate?" Kiela scowled. "That's exactly why she was supposed to die, Goldferth."

"It wasn't really my idea, Kiela. It was Kiola's."

Kiela looked at him, shock overwhelming her features. "Kiola? Kiola knew?"

Goldferth looked uncomfortable under her stare. "Yes. She was a bastard child too, Kiela. I never understood why she wasn't included."

"Because we were the four, Goldferth. Between us, we carried the illegitimate blood from all four realms. There was no need for a fifth."

"Yes, the blood of the realms we have now destroyed. So why does it matter?"

"Honestly Goldferth." Kiela shook her head. "We destroyed them so that we could rebuild them to be the glorious things they were meant to be. Where have you been all this time?"

Goldferth looked at the ground. "Those Shaman people were crazy, Kiela. I honesty can't believe we went through with this whole thing."

Kiela walked over and slapped him across the face. "Perhaps we should have let you die with the rest. Or maybe I should kill you now. Is that what you want, Goldferth?"

Reita put a hand on Kiela's shoulder. "Calm down Kiela. Having Gueneth will not kill us. She could be quite useful. You never know." Reita stood still for a moment, squinting into the gloom, sharing a look with Kiela. "I feel another presence here, Kiela. There are six people in this room."

Loren nodded. "Kiola is in the shadows still. You can come out now."

Wide eyed, a girl of fourteen stepped from the shadows, looking up at Kiela whom she had always admired, hoping not to be yelled at or threatened. Kiela couldn't help but smile slightly. It never ceased to amaze her how alike she and Goldferth's sister were in looks. Though Kiela's hair was darker, her figure more muscular, and her face harder, she could almost have been twins with the younger girl. "This is just wonderful." She said in a mocking voice, then she began walking out of the cavern, and everyone followed.