In the end, who can differentiate reality from a very realistic dream?

July 15, 1984 Blood Edward Isle

The exploration team has landed upon the lone island in the middle of nowhere. Even though Blood Edward Isle is not far from mainland England, no one as of yet has populated the land. Rumors speak of a "curse" that surrounds the island, tainting its shore line waters with the unique and unnamed red algae. Not that I don't believe in legends. Anyway, onto the research team. My team, actually, since seventeen year old me is put in charge of the six man group searching out the mysteries of this amazing, absolutely amazing place.

A little bit about myself. My full name is Faera Penelope Viscount. People call me Faera for short, or Dr. Faera, which ever they prefer. I am what my country proudly declares as a prodigy chemist and scientist, albeit somewhat of a mentally unstable person. Well, I can tell you it's not my fault I talk to everything around me…dead or alive. But that's all that's wrong with me. I, as all average girls my age, have medium long hair that I leave flying about and average amber eyes. Though if you talk to my mother, she'd probably tell you in a conspirational tone that "my daughter has the most amazing, innocent eyes ever. Just like a little angel." I suppose that's what all mothers do, but bless her heart. I have many hobbies, my top ones are working in my lab and exploring. Life and nature captures my spirit, and so I find myself doing bio-search jobs often than not. Such as this one.

About my job. I am working as a chemist and pharmacist, though I do have some experience regarding biology. Generally, big families and companies try to catch---or in their word hire---me to do exploring jobs in uncharted part of nature or to concoct some mysterious medicine that they suppose only I can make. I tend to stick to the former job than the latter though; sometimes the extent of human psychology and their understanding of medic disgust me. Running around in nature is much more fun, and believe me, after a week in a lab I am quite prepared for excitement. I still run away from my bosses, it's so much more fun to work in my own freedom than to be "hired" to do a job. This month, I've been careless, and got caught in a supermarket by the bodyguards of Edward family. Hey, they were fast, but I gave them quite a chase…until the blond millionaire himself told me that I get to explore his family heirloom for free, if I accept his job. Nothing intrigues me more than natural phenomenon, and the mysterious crimson island is too good too leave. So here I am with a bunch of idiotic men who think they are soooo much better than me, regardless of the fact that I outrank them in everything from I.Q. to E.Q.

About Blood Edward Isle. As I previously mentioned, the plot of land is not too far from England, yet far enough to be undisturbed. It seems that Monsieur Edward wants to develop the island into a vacation spot soon, and wishes to have the place's unique life recorded and analyzed. That is where I come in. I, as a good little scientist should, is suppose to collect the red algae the island is famous for and analyze its nature and origin. The rest of the island life is to be left in the "capable", though I highly doubt that, hands of my colleagues. The water plant is very much strange. Seen from the helicopter, Blood Edward Isle is ringed by crimson water.

My colleagues, though I do not wish to talk about them, are as followed. We have here in our team Sherri, Linton, Harrison, Gaskin, and of course me Viscount. Plainly spoken, I hate them. Never have I seen such obnoxious, loud-mouthed, vain, and disrespectful scientists. They hold no regard for life, as seen by much of their trampling around the beautiful plants on this island, and no obedience. The first time we met, Gaskin proceeded to call me "little girl" and Sherri had the gall to mock me in ways I shall not describe. Either way, I would have preferred knocking them out, if only "boss" didn't step in and tell them to stop. Still, the result is one leaderless team (they are not obeying or listening to a thing I say).

Our explorations officially start tomorrow, though I don' think anyone will mind if I sneak out tonight and do some research of my own.

Serene moonlight glows ethereally onto the white, sandy beaches. Waves calmly brushed upon the shores as the figure of a girl stood out in the lonely scene. Softly, she treads toward the open waters, not pausing when she walked upon the very sea itself. As if in a trance, she looked up at the glowing moon when a breeze blew by, sending her hair and summer dress flowing. Underneath her feet, gentle red light started to glow, emitted from the strange algae that border the island. The girl does not turn back, or else she would have noticed the bewitching picture she makes with her surrounding, and the shadow that is not hers.
July 16, 1984 Blood Edward Isle

The strangest things happened that not even I know where to begin. I left the main group last night to do some beginning research on the red algae. When I arrived on the beach, a queasy feeling that something is staring at me struck me. But I tend to be a bit overly cautious, so I ignored it. For some reason, the island itself is bustling with plants and sounds, but the beach is so deathly quiet…I blame it on the night air. The moon is beautiful though, and when it shines on the waters, a glowing crimson light is emitted from the algae. I must record it down, this strange photosynthetic property. When I tried to collect the sample, the strangest thing happened. It appears that I can stand on top of the water, walking on top of the algae! Does this have to do with some unique density altering property? I do not know. However, I did fall into the deeper waters where no algae appear to exist. It seems my plant life does not survive well beyond a distance from the island shores. It stung though, when I touched the algae infested waters. I suppose they might be poisonous. I got my sample though, and enough data to mull over for a day and treaded back.

The other strange thing happened today morning. I was walking among the miniature forest marveling at the myriad of plant life and wondering where the freshwater ponds came from when the idiot team came and ruined my entire day. Sure, they are supposed to be "collecting" life samples, but do they have to BOMB the lake to do so?! I watched in hopelessness as fish after fish floated up dead, and I guess I cried and lost it for a moment. They were laughing and taunting me again, teasing me about "did they scream out their last words to you?" and how "they are just animals." I could care less; everything has a life and should not be treated so harshly. I remembered running away, far far away, and found myself back on the quiet shores that I was collecting data from last night. I fell asleep while leaning on the side of the cliff that looks out into the sea. When I woke up I felt a presence behind me. Living alone for ten years means that I am intoned to possible dangers, and I jerked myself out of sleep mode with some difficulty. The first thing I noticed is that someone, or something, tied my hair. It's now in a neat braid tied with a loose piece of black cloth. Not only that, a worn out ring lies half buried next to me. I dug it up of course. It's a very neat little piece of silvery metal that bears a strange mark. Perhaps its last owner used it as a seal to letters and so forth. It looked really old, at least some centuries. I pocketed it, and decided to keep it for a souvenir. Looking around, I didn't see anyone and touched my hair. It looks a bit neater now, but I am pretty sure the only thing with the capacity to braid is human, living or dead. A little bit scared, I quickly walked back to my camp, waiting to get off of this island soon and study my samples in the safety of my lab.

July 19, 1984 London, England

I came back home today, to my nice little lab and nice little house. Just now, I have completed my analysis on the quality of the blood algae. It appears that I am correct in stating the poisonous nature of this plant. The poison is released from the surface of the algae and causes a slow death. Thankfully, that means I only lost maybe twenty years of my life with that little stung back there. Good enough for me. However, it's impossible for the island to be turned into a vacation home unless the algae is gotten rid off, an impossible feat as of yet. I tried everything from burning to chemical treatment. Nothing works. The plant insists on living. Even worse, I've felt uneasy upon returning to my home. Maybe the poison? Anyway, I must report this important discovery to Monsieur Edward before it's too late.

I always felt a sense of uncomfort, almost as though something is following me. As I told you before, I do believe in some extent the possibility of the supernatural. I've kept the ring I found along with the black cloth inside my treasure cabinet. I've yet had time to check them out more carefully. Their mysteriousness calms me yet scares me. It's getting on my nerves a bit. I couldn't even enjoy a nice tiramisu.

I suppose it's partly due to tiredness from my trip. I shall retire early today.

July 20, 1984 My House

I've a strange dream last night, if I decided to call it that. In my dream, I woke up in my nightgown in an unfamiliar room. The walls are built of stones, and no windows are present. There are however, two huge bookcases that caught my interest greatly. There in my dream, is a boy perhaps three years younger than me. I found out that his name is Lucian Radyon. He told me to call him Lucian for short. Lucian is a rather interesting person, I found. He told me that he studies alchemy and is an alchemist/hex of sort. I didn't balk at that, after all, I am dreaming, and in my deepest heart I do believe in alchemy. He and I got along nicely, after the brief and somewhat embarrassing explanation of why a strange girl in a white nightgown is currently standing in a male alchemist-to-be's room at nighttime. I learned that this is 1600 in England, and that though alchemy is not commonly accepted, it does exist and the place I am at is one of the leading academy for the art. My new found friend is supposed to be a third year disciple, and quite the genius of his age. While we were discussing him, the boy asked me a few questions about myself, all of which I tried to answer as less complicated as possible. Hahah, I don't think he'd take it too well if I tell him that I live in 1984, in an age where alchemy is equivalent to idiotic thinking.

A bit of description on my dream friend. He looks quite dashing for a fourteen year old (I found out that my calculation is correct). He has what I call the deep and mysterious kind of eyes that lets me read little of his personality. That constant and confident smile of his is also quite different from my usual self. Lucian got strange red hair and eyes, though when I told him I thought they were pretty, he gave me that unreadable stare and small smile again. I honestly don't think I get the guy much. But I won't mind, since it's my dream only.

Quite the little gentleman, he lent me one of his thicker robes when he noticed my shivering. I had to thank him for it; the robe is nice and warm, albeit somewhat of a dark color. I didn't quite notice that I fell asleep while asking questions and genially chatting with him. Quite another embarrassment, not to mention, can one fall asleep in one's own dream? I certainly did.

I "woke" up from my dream world when Lucian kindly tapped me on my shoulder, informing me with his amused smile that its morning and he needs to leave for his class. I decided to follow him, and as I have predicted, no one else other than Lucian can see me. He has kindly let me borrow his robe, which for some reasons, his classmates fail to see either. Maybe just because it's on me. Anything is possible in a dream, right? And so, I had my first lesson in alchemy advanced, though I found out that it is very similar to chemistry, and that even in the past, alchemy is very much advanced in it's analysis of chemical compounds and relations to life. I told Lucian during the break, and he smiled again, asking me if I would like to talk to him about my life as a chemist, to which I accepted happily.

Around his lunchtime, the dear asked me awkwardly if I would like some food, to which I declined. Silly him, I am dreaming, of course I can't eat. He laughs at his own logic fallacy, and then proceeds to lunch as I talk to him about my life. His eyes unnerve me a bit when he is looking at me so intently even while eating his food. I told him after a while that he'd get bad digestion if he focuses on something else other than food at lunchtime. Lucian just gives me that special mischievous smile of his, something that I found out through out the day that I tend to bring up out of him. I told him so, and he laughs, telling me that I am really direct, but he did not contradict my statement. I was going to ask him why he would want to eat his lunch outside by himself… (Well, I guess I could count as a person)But a tingling sensation told me that my time is probably up. I didn't get time to say goodbye before I was swept out of my dream and woke up in my nice bed with my nice penguin plushie. That's one weird dream, but I have to say, it felt nice.

I noted dully, that somehow, I could "feel" in my dream, the cold, Lucian's robe, everything…

It was the first night of Full Moon. Lucian sat on his bed without a sound, eyes unfocused as he continued his daily meditation. The room that is assigned to him, same as all other young apprentices is windowless and tight as a prison. Many of the less experienced students often tried to escape due to the harsh regime of the school. Not that he would escape; he lived here for all his life and to him, the regime is just way too easy. It's not his fault those people around him are mostly idiots and he is considered a genius is everyway. Lucian's calm night ended abruptly when he focused his eyes and noticed a girl on his bed, sitting across from him and looking around with a dazed but calm demeanor. For the first time in his life, Lucian felt something akin to shock.

They sat there for a while, just looking at each other. He had on his usual unreadable face and knowing smile, while his heart did a number of flips with the sudden and unnoticeable appearance of the girl. First, it's a wonder he didn't notice anything at all. Second, a girl is in his room, and it's forbidden for opposite sexed acolytes to be in the same wing of the tower rooms. Lucian did a quick superficial analysis, and couldn't help but note with some embarrassment that he thought the girl to be pretty. Not that he'd tell her, but in her white night gown and with her innocent face, she looked very much vulnerable and angelic. He's especially captivated by her eyes, shining with curiosity and intelligence that few people he met had. He had spoken first and asked with much patience who she is.

"Pardon me, but how did you get here?"

"Hm, I think I am in my dream world."

Her answer surprised him, but he believed it partly because his occupation demands a flexible mind, and partly because he didn't think this soul would ever lie. He had asked for her name after she asked for his. Faera, she had said, just call me Faera. He almost, almost informed her that Faera has a deeper meaning pertaining to fairy folk. So here Lucian finds himself doing the impossible; he chatted amiably with this stranger about his life as an alchemist/hex apprentice.

Two turns of the sandglass, he had probably informed Faera of more than what others had taken a life time to know. He tried to ask her about her world, and listened as she put on her thoughtful face and answered him his questions of her life. He had to admit she has an adorable thoughtful face. That thought almost surprised him. Being the genius of the school, he is very much popular, but he had always distanced himself from the general populace, especially the females, deeming them to be on a different level. He noticed her shivering, and didn't even wonder about his actions when he took out one of his favorite robes and draped it gently across her form. Faera had commented on him having pretty eyes and hair. He felt a bit surprised that she would think them pretty when others thought it bad luck. He wondered if he should tell her that red hair signifies high relation to curses, but decided against it. Instead, he found himself laughing a little, another emotion he rarely used. She drifted to sleep eventually, and he faintly remembered wondering how a person dreaming can fall asleep. His heart couldn't take it though, if he is to sleep on the bed that she is on. Dragging a chair over to the side of the bed, Lucian spent the rest of the night watching his newfound first friend.

He woke her up reluctantly in the morning, and was even more reluctant to inform her that he needs to leave for class soon. To his relief and elation, she volunteered to go with him, telling him that no one else probably can see her anyway. He used to be always alone while other people attended classes with their friends. He is suppose to be different, a genius of his generation and rising alchemist. People either feared him or worshipped him; no one tried to befriend him or talk to him. It's a godsend that Faera (he refuses to believe she is a figment of his imagination) is so casual with him.

The hypothesis was proven true and indeed, not even some of the most powerful sages could see Faera. She had listened to the lecture with him, so focused that she didn't even feel his concentration on her the entire time. They had lunch together later, and for the first time again, he didn't spend his free time in solitude and he appreciated her company. Faera informed him of how her chemistry is very similar to his alchemy, and he asked her to talk about it more. He figured he likes both the subject and her voice. Faera has a penchant for being very direct with her thoughts, and Lucian found that he likes that aspect her quite well. He was properly surprised when she told him that his stares unnerve her a little. He has no doubt that his thoughts would unnerve her more, but refrained from telling her so.

Lucian is quite content at the moment, to just let time pass as he spend some quality time with an entity that only he can see and hear. As with all good things, it must end sometimes. Just as he turned around a bit, he realized that Faera is nowhere to be seen. His robe is on the bench, and left him with an empty feeling. Lucian went back to eating calmly. Faera is real, and she would come back; the proof? His nearly discarded robe is still warm.

July 21, 1984 London, England

I went to my wonderful (sarcasm there) employer today. And of course, along with me I brought the report on the biological analysis of the crimson algae. The nerve of that man! He told me, with his so arrogant air, that it's my job to take care of it. Not only that, he told me to find a way to destroy the plants in three weeks! There is simply no way to accomplish such a feat in such a small amount of time. Not only that, it's a sin to destroy life so ruthlessly. Who knew what other life forms survive along with the algae? Monsieur Edward is asking the impossible and I told him so. He then proceeds to question my intellect in understanding his words. What were they again…oh, "Have you not enough ears to hear me clearly? It's either you take care of it, or I build the vacation spot regardless of whether or not the algae is there." He doesn't care at all about the lives of others! He even had the gall to dismiss me so carelessly when his even more arrogant secretary came in to chase me out so he can have his daily "meeting" with all his "business partners." Seriously, everyone knew his business partners are either perverted or otherwise no good rich people of the supposedly upper class. Huff. Well, either way, I am now out here with all my reports torn or stepped on while some people sneered or stared me with pity.

He is either very wise or very stupid, but all in all, Monsieur Edward is very cruel. He knows as a scientist and simply a Viscount, I can't possibly rest until I find a solution to this problem. But how can I nullify the plant's effects in a merely three weeks! Not to mention the samples and tests….Ahh, a migraine coming. I need to rest soon. When I get home, I am going to have a nice bath, lie down on my big soft comfy bed with my penguin plushie. Say good night to all.

It was seven moons later when Lucian had the luck of encountering his soul friend again. He had grown slightly impatient at not seeing her, and started to question his own sanity. Perhaps as the rumors are spreading around, the poisons he so loves to work with is finally getting to his brain. But there she is again, sitting in her white gown on top of his bed, looking around as though she belonged here. And in a way, Lucian did wish she belonged here.

He said his greetings as though nothing has happened, while again his heart is clamoring with his excitement and happiness. Faera looked, he noted delightfully, happy to see him as well. He found out that time works differently in her world than his, and that eight of her hours may equivalent one day in his, while another twenty may add up to seven days. It was all together too confusing to make sense of. He talked to her about his days, and she listened attentively. She's the only person he trusts with his secrets and feelings. It's as though a week's worth of stress is finally let out. Unlike last time, Faera looked tired, and somewhat stressed. Lucian is worried about her health, and among a few other things.

"How long will you be able to stay this time?" He asked hesitantly.

"I am not sure. I hope longer, I do need the vacation." She answered with a sigh.

"…I hope you stay much longer."

He still stared intently at her, ignoring the feeling that the last statement probably sounded a bit desperate and embarrassing. Faera did the blushing for him though, and laughed at his words. She told him that she hoped so too, and that he needs to consider the things he speaks.

"Honestly, Lucian, you'll never get friends if you talk like that."

"I don't have friends. You are the only friend I have." And need…

"…well, you are probably the only friend I have as well."

He is surprised. How could such a charming, cheerful angel have no friend other than him? In a way, he is most pleased as well. So he is probably as important to her as she is to him. He like the thought of her spending her time with him only, then promptly shook his head at his naivety and childish possessiveness.

"Why do you look so tired? Did something bad happen?" He noted with concern.

"Ahhh….what shall I do? You read me so well now!" She joked tiredly, and then let her smile slip.

Faera told him of the problem she had in her world. Something about a plant or another, that is really amazing, but is poisonous. She is to find a cure for it. Upon hearing the word "poison," Lucian's interests perked up tenfold. Maybe he can help. He is a specialist in poison, after all, and collects the stuff for hobbies.

Faera laughs mirthfully and told him he probably has one unhealthy hobby. He pretends to sniff indignantly and tells her that at least he cares about his life to not touch samples without protective gear, unlike a certain someone he knew. In truth, Lucian is very much concerned her health, and the way she disregards it so carelessly. Still, she looks at him with hope in her eyes, and he couldn't help but smile again. Such an innocent person she is. How happy he is that he can be of some help to her. Chiding her gently, he told her to go to sleep, and she replies with a teasing "I am older than you." Watching her fall into sleep, and the gentle rise and fall of her breathing, Lucian wondered just why he felt so very complete at the moment.

"And then you step this way…" Faera laughed as she danced away in the large empty land inside the courtyard of the "castle." An amused alchemist looked at her with twinkling eyes. It had been almost a month now, and he is surprised at how the existence of one Faera Penelope Viscount flowed so smoothly into his life. She is always there for him, be it lectures, experiments, lunches, socials that he hates, readings that he loves. He no longer has an alone time, as she is always with him, or if she is not, he finds her and demands that she does not give him a heart attack by disappearing so suddenly. After the first time she runs off to investigate a simple beeline flower, he panicked and ran around looking for her. People had stared at his frantic behaviors in confusion. Faera promised and kept her promise since then to not run out on him. Never in his life had Lucian felt so content in simply living.

His colleagues and the masters noted the small changes. More light in his eyes, a more real smile occasionally, and his tendency to stare intensely at nothingness (or so they thought). A few students even swore they heard him laugh and talk in a friendly way to nothing. They had a talk with him, of course, but he is not a genius for nothing. All he had to do is deny the charges and reassure them of his yet stable mentality. Afterwards, he just needs to be more careful with his actions. The old fool bags believed him; they couldn't risk loosing one who is so competent with the arts of alchemy.

A dance is coming up soon, and Lucian has been asked to attend as usual. Out of the ordinary, he actually accepted the offer, and rumors instantly started to fly about just who he is going to take to the dance. Lucian frowned at the comical, and somewhat annoying, behaviors of his fellow female classmates after that, batting their eyelashes or giggling uncontrollably at him when he passes by. Faera laughs at his expense and tells him that he is such a lady killer, even at his relative young age, and he smirks slightly, asking if he has captured her heart as well. She answers, of course he did, and he is forced to a sudden stop. Looking closely at her for any signs of a joke, he is surprised by another tinkling chuckle from the girl.

"You are my best soul friend, so of course you did."

"…you are missing the point."



He gives her his traditional smile, and she huffs about his secret keeping ways. Deep inside of him, Lucian felt a bit of frustration at her innocence and how she refuses to look at him other than a friend and little brother.

The day of the dance was on a Half Moon night. Most of the rumors had it out for Lucian, saying that perhaps he's bringing someone from a different place or that he actually invited another boy to the dance. All of them were surprised when the dark alchemist appeared in the courtyard with…no one. The rumors died down then, and the students went back to socializing, all too aware that if they were caught staring at him, they'd probably end up dieing "mysteriously." Meanwhile, Lucian is having too much fun chatting with Faera in a secluded part of the ground, where the music of the dance just barely reaches. Mustering up his courage, he asked for a dance, and is rewarded when Faera stood up and gave him a pretty curtsey. They danced gracefully among the leaves of autumn, blessed by the moonlight of the crescent.

The peaceful moment was ruined, when without notice, Faera disappeared into nothingness. Lucian stood still by himself, hands raised as if still holding her. It was a full five minutes later when he let his arms drop to his side, a sad and disappointed frown on his face as he looked into the moon. Something in him is breaking painfully, and the darkness is returning. He is alone, once again.

July 24, 1984 Lab, My House

I've been so busy in the past two days that I didn't even get to write in this journal. I feel so much better now, thanks to my little vacation in dream world. Lucian was there! It's as though I've known him all my life, and we had so much fun together. I even attended a dance with him. Hah, I am a much better dancer than he is though, but that's not the point. I talked to him about my little project with the crimson algae, and the dear told me he'd help out. Apparently, he has extensive knowledge on different types of poisons, and who knows; maybe things impossible today will be possible in the past. Unfortunately, I did not bring a sample with me on the last trip; I shall remember to do so this time. Probably holding it in my sleep would help, since my night cloth gets transferred over along with me. I'll make sure to wear a makeshift sample necklace this time. At least, working out a solution with him guarantees me more time on the subject. Time works differently here and there somehow. Hm, now to think about it, I never questioned why I am able to travel around in dreams like this, but it's so wonderful. I feel so warm and happy now, even happier than when I am with my experiments and explorations. Due to this adventure, I've found my very first and very best friend. I hope I shall be able to see him soon. Oh well, tonight then, if my experiments do not take up the whole night again, like yesterday..

July 25, 1984 My House, England

The wonders of it all. I am at a complete loss of words. I went back, that's all I can say. But things were so different this time. It appears quite a few number of years have passed since my last return. Lucian is actually older than me now! He changed so much; I don't even know what to say. When I feel asleep last night, I woke up in a strange room, definitely not my friend's old room. This one is more comfy, with even more bookshelves and a door opens to what I think is a small lab. I was so shocked when an older male voice amiably told me hello. And there he is. No longer the small, short boy but a twenty year old young man. (I think my heart skipped a beat at how calm and handsome he looks now). It was a bit awkward, and I had no clue what had happened, so Lucian filled me up a bit on the past events and how many years had gone past since that fateful evening. He looked so much mature now, but his emotions…I don't know, something just really felt wrong. He hugged me though, quite out of the ordinary, and told me that he is glad I came back. I think my over cautious mind is overreacting again, but did he hold me just a bit longer than necessary? But then again, if I were to not see my best friend for some five six years, I'd probably feel really insecure and unsafe as well. Hm, insecure is not what I would describe Lucian though; he is positively radiating confidence and knowledge. I must say, I never realized that I would be so very, very happy to see him again. Even if to me it had been no more than a few days.

It appears my friend has had incredible achievements here in his world. Now, he is one of the top masters of the academy, and is very well respected in his arts. After a fairly long reunion chatting, I did most of the talking this time (another major change from before). His stares still unnerve me. They are more guarded (don't know how that is even possible) at others, but still so warm and open when he is looking at me. I suppose it's the friendship that we've managed to build up during the years. I couldn't read him anymore though, and I told him that. He chuckled and told me that it's a habit of his, and don't worry about it. He won't hold too many secrets from me, hmm, emphasizes on "too many," but he just smiles it off. Honestly, that man, just what haven't he told me yet? But yes, he's still the same mysterious and powerful in some degrees genius to the others of the school. I must admit, he is still good looking as ever, hint his fans are ever increasing, though he just looks at me with that small smile of his and never answered back. But really, I am getting used to his staring at me all the time now. For some reason, other people still appear scared of him. I never asked though, if Lucian wished to tell me, then he would. Digging information is so imprudent.

I showed him my sample of the red algae, and he seems very much interested in the subject. We vouched to work on it every night, when he is not too tired. With all that work to do as an alchemy master, I am surprised he is still up that late at night. He refused to let me sleep on his large armchair when I offered to; after all he works so very hard for me to take up his bed. Such a gentleman still, but really, did he have to call me mother-like when I scolded him for not taking care of his health? I lost that argument though, and he ends up sleeping in his armchair and will continue to for I don't know how long. Well, we compromised in the end when he woke up after I tried to drag him up the bed. Seriously, he has a higher caution alarm than I do. I just touched him and he was staring at me again. So we end up sharing the bed. I trust him enough to know he won't do anything silly like the boys in the real world tends to do. Besides, it's so much warmer in Winter to have another source of heat other than the fireplace, which by the way is definitely not enough warmth compared to the central heating system I have at home.

I believe that it has been over a year in his world when I left him again. It's horrible really, to just suddenly disappear and not even being able to say good bye. But life is certainly most harsh. That year had been fun, but I can't write them all down. I feel bad though, about leaving again. On one of the Full Moon nights, Lucian told me that he hates it when I disappear, that something hurts really bad when I leave. But when I looked at him again, he went back to unreadable mode, and I could only wonder at how much loneliness he withstood. I only left for a day, but he went friendless for many years. I feel so guilty. When I tell him so, he just smiled at me and gave me a hug. Hm, his hugs are different from mother's hugs; it's much more intense and sudden. Weird, now I am talking hugs. I left my sample in my hurry to leave. I am going to return tonight when I can. I hope it hasn't been too long. Of to work I go then.

Evening, same date.

People need to reconsider their priorities before they make a decision. It was a normal day for me I suppose; having done my bits and pieces of lab work I went to do a little food shopping. And guess what, I got abducted into the oversized limo of the "you know who" millionaire again. Well, the oh-so-royal Monsieur Edward is apparently too busy to talk to me, but his I-am-your-superior butler told me that he demands me to appear at a certain dance, oh and finish that project as soon as possible. Ha, in their dreams. I jumped off the car when they were careless and told them I need my sleep and lab work done in time, and run off. As if I could be forced into a dance. No way. Well, whatever is left of my day are spent answering threatening phone calls (I pulled the wires out after the twentieth phone, think of the phone bill!) and revisiting the old lab notes I have wrote on the red algae. I am looking forward to bed a little later. Hopefully, my mind will have a bit of a vacation there.

Third Quarter Moon Winter, 1608 Draconian Castle, England

I am aware that diary keeping is a risk to the loss of one's privacy, and here in this cold world, all one has is one's own mind. Sometimes, not even that, considering how proficient mind readers are these days. However, such events as of late steers me toward the action of keeping a journal, so that I shall not forget the important emotions I had the benefit of experiencing, even if for once of a lifetime. I shall record here my innermost thoughts, those that cannot be shared ever with any other, not even and maybe especially not her.

Faera Penelope Viscount. My dear, dear soul friend. You have no idea how your very presence sustain my very existence yet torment me so. How is it that of all that I can obtain, have obtained, you shall never be part of? That fateful encounter eight years ago, a time when solitude overtook my mind and my whole being is but a simple, empty shell. You have set my heart back onto the track of the living, given me hope that I am not alone, and provided for me a confidant that I so desperately needed to stay sane. In this castle, no such thing as friend exists. No companionship, nor trust. We, the dark artists of the secrecy had sworn ourselves since birth to keep our minds to ourselves only. Penalty for being truthful to anyone is death. I have no friends, dear Faera, I have no family. I have only myself, no reason to really live, until you came along. I have met my first and only friend. First that I have ever let myself really talk to. Only one that I can ever trust.

But you should be scared. I am not easily amused by anything or anyone, and those around me knew better than to perk my interest. I am the dark, cursed one. I am the prodigy alchemist. I am the one without real emotions. Yet you don't know any of that, and even when you did throughout your visits, you did not shun me, only to be there to cheer me on. You might not know, but I am very much obsessed with your presence. To see you again each day became one of my main reasons of living, to know that you really exist, that you are not simply my imagination. Though heavens knew that I am deprived and crippled enough to think up something as wonderful as you.

You would not know how throughout the years, even when you are not there, I dreamed and thought of you. But Faera, I would not hurt you, never, and as you see me no more than a best friend, I shall not incite you to think further. The situation is as complicated as it is enough, you from a different world, unable to control the length of time you stay. Remember that time? When you appeared for only two hours, giving me a taste of happiness, before you disappeared into nothingness? Remember the time when you managed to stay a whole year with me? That was the happiest time of my life. But alas, as all good things must end. You too must leave. My heart breaks each time you disappear, for I knew not if you can ever come back again before this life ends. I want to see you now. Maybe hold you, just to know that I am really not alone. I despise solitude, despise these walls, and despise what it is I can do and what I cannot do. Why can we not be in the same time, and you can show me all the delightful memories you have told me about? But it is only a hopeless wish.

I love you Faera Penelope Viscount. You have not captured my heart, for I have none. You have created the heart that you have graciously blessed me with, and it only beats for you, only when you are near. This feeling I know you shall not return, and I, the fool that I am, cannot tell you ever. Perhaps one day this foolish Lucian Radyon shall be able to tell you his one secret.

"So the research is coming along nicely?" Faera asked with interest. "And you are not going to tell me anything until it's for sure correct?"

"Hmhm, that is correct." The older red haired man smiled, his scarlet eyes twinkling with mischief. "You don't get to know until I finish."

"But, but I thought we were in this together!" Faera tried to pout angrily, but failed miserably as a chuckle came out of her companion. "Fine, Mister Perfect, I'll leave you to finish it. But I must be the first one to know!"

"Of course my lady, who else would I rather share a discovery with?" Lucian glided across the room elegantly. She has such a cute pout. "Come, Faera, why not accompany me to the gardens? It is spring now."

August 4, My House as always

Oh that silly man! He found something out and absolutely refuses to tell me. But I can't get angry at him, he's so stubborn sometimes. It's nearing the deadline set by Monsieur Edward, and I am thinking of setting camp on Blood Edward Isle for a few days until the end of the project. Least I can do is make sure the people are informed and safe from the plant, even if I failed to find a cure in time. When I asked Lucian about it, he just smiles that mysterious smile, and tells me to stop searching since I won't find a cure for it. I don't know, he must have found something out, yet he refuses to tell me. Sigh, maybe I can wrestle the idea out of him some other day (night). He looks tired, Lucian, I am really worried. He's always so strong looking, but on my last visit, he brought me out to the garden. We sat there, enjoying the peace and quiet, when he told me that nothing good lasts long, just like the flowers. There was so much sadness (and anger?) in that voice. I told him though, that even should flowers wilt, they always grow back the following season. He looks at me and asks if he can hold my hand, then proceeded to do so. He looks so unhappy, but when I ask him, he just tells me that some business is getting annoying. I hope, he will be all right. I can't wait to get to Blood Edward Isle today, so I can sleep early and get to see Lucian again. Maybe I can cheer him up a bit more than I did.

Quarters Fall 1610, Draconian Castle

It is a most silly business I have found out today, regarding the strange flora Faera brought to me for analysis. I have found out, throughout the many years of research, the bases and origin of the plant. However, it is most bizarre, the result I have found…nevertheless, it's impossible for anyone in to…"cure" it now. I know the way, but I shall not tell her yet. What if she doesn't visit again once she knows the truth? While my heart knew Faera is not such a person, the realistic side of me wants me to act selfish once more, and keep the information a bit longer. There is another reason though, why she should not knew of the red algae just yet…patience, a virtue that we all need but few have.

I have lately some problems with the Church of England. It appears that problems involving alchemists are increasing. While some of the people related to alchemist attacks are fake, there are indeed several of our people who joined the heretics against the church. I've a most horrible time convincing the diplomats from the King that we are not rebelling and certainly are most loyal subjects to his highness. However, there is still that distrust in their eyes, the arrogant fools, and I shall not lower myself to do anything other than that. Pride is such a dangerous thing.

Faera comforts me, and tells me cheerful things. Her presence is warming enough, and I am unhappy that she is to leave again. Her hand is warm and soft, and she tells me that I have the hands of an artists. Ah, innocent Faera, I am an artist. While your artist plays around with paints and canvas, I toy around with matter and lives. But I am glad, that you like my hands, that you like me. Perhaps, should things degrade further, you shall get your answer sooner than I am ready to give it. Please forgive me, Faera…

A dark robed young man sat silently in front of his marble desk, his face as unreadable and blank as the very statues outside the gate. Resting his elbows on the desk, he frowned as thoughts of unpleasant and dangerous matters flitted through his memories once again. Light knocks could be heard outside his large oaken doors.

".E…excuse me? M..Master Radyon…may I co…come in?" A timid voice called out in hushed whispers. Insecurity radiated from him toward the said Master Radyon. His answer came when a sudden wind opened the door, pulling the poor man into the room with one of the most infamous pillars of Draconian.

Lucian had been a judge of characters since a young age. There's nothing more amusing than to sit in the shadows and observe all the gestures and personality quirks of other human. That doesn't mean he always liked what he saw. The cowering man in front of him, trying but failing miserably to be brave and state his business, is certainly something he disliked.

"Ah…th..a.t…" Really, if he fidgets anymore, Lucian would have no problem killing him of here and now. As if matters are not bad enough without an idiot wasting his time like this.

"Tell the others that I shall attend the meeting shortly." With a curt dismissal, Lucian went back to staring blankly at the wall. The messenger runs out of the room as if chased by a demon. He let out a sadistic smirk. Demon, perhaps many would choose to describe him as such.

His expression suddenly shifted when a gentle glow ebbed in the center of his room. Rushing forward quickly, he caught the newly emerged girl into a tight hug, almost as though hanging onto a lifeline.

"Lucian? What's wrong?" Soft voice spoke to him as Faera gently patted his back. Still, he refused to loosen his hold or let go.

"Stay with me. Don't leave." He whispered urgently, seriously. He needs her here, with him, or else he might never see her again. Even thinking about such a possibility is painful.

"….Lucian." She doesn't have to say anymore. Sighing ever so slightly, she shifted only to have the alchemist master clung to her more tightly. She would tolerate it though; he is rarely so emotional about anything. Something drastic must have happened.

The couple stayed there for what seems almost like eternity. He let himself be lost in her essence, the sweet scent she carries, the warmth she radiates, her gentle pats of encouragement, the rhythmic beating of her heart. Closing his eyes for a minute, almost as though a decision is made, he began speaking.

"The King is going to attempt to destroy us. It seems we, the followers of the forgotten arts, are too powerful to be left alone." He stated monotonously.

Faera gasped in shock, unable to find a response to comfort him. As if reading her thoughts, Lucian continued with a small, sad smile.

"Don't worry about it, there's nothing you can do. I just feel…threatened at the moment."

"What are the possible outcomes?" She asked, choking back her worries. "Please tell me the truth."

"…It is unlikely that we can fight and win against the strength of the royal army." He buried his face into her hair, hiding away the frown marring his face. "This may be the end to us all."

"What?! No! There must be a way out of this! Isn't it possible to hide away, until the king no longer thinks alchemy is a threat?"

Lucian raised his head, loosening his hold on her a bit but never letting go. Tears threatened to fall from his angel's eyes, yet he cannot bring himself to comfort her. "I would never lie to you." He whispered softly, soul lost in her golden eyes. Never. His gaze hardened once again and a particular fiery spirit seems to overcome his being. "I won't go down without a fight."

"Stay with me, Faera, don't leave me. I am…scared….frightened that I shall not be able to talk to you again. At least stay with me to the end…"

"Don't talk like that! There won't be an end…not like that! Please! Say you'll be all right!"

Even as he hangs onto her, the twinkling glow appeared again. He cursed the fate that would torment him so, not allowing him to even enjoy a longer rest. Faera struggled futilely against the glow that will once again separate her from her best friend, maybe forever. He seems to be content just holding her.

"NO! I don't want to leave! Lucian!" She frantically tries to control the magic flow, even as Lucian stood still, holding onto her for as long as possible.

"Faera…the formula…." His voice is lost to the world as she woke up in her bed.

Deep Winters 1611, Draconian Castle Gate

There is deep unrest within these walls today. I would know why. The King, that foolish man, has decreed a royal summons to all those who reside in these walls. There is not much I can do as one by one, I send away the lesser acolytes away into the safety of the outside world. Those who knew the more advanced arts are not allowed to leave. It is expected. We are to protect the secrecy of the dark arts…and we, at least I, cannot let the King and his armies trample upon us like sheep. We are anything but. We are the alchemists of Draconian, those who knew the lost arts of darkness and follows its ways. I feel no regret doing what I shall do soon…Faera.

I wish I could have held you in a longer embrace that last meeting fourteen moons ago, be it eternity or judgment day. But alas, I have tried before (without your knowledge), and knew that nothing can stop fate's fickleness and that you must return home whether this selfish man wishes it or not. My only pain in leaving life is not to be able to pass on my thoughts to you…In the end, I really don't want you to leave.

If I wish it, this journal may be my will and what is left of my memories. Should I, angel? Should I once again leave something for the future generations to find? For you to find? I wish…I dare not say it. A hex's wish is always so dangerous. It can come true in the most random ways.

I hear the bells. With what is left of this castle, less than fifty advanced alchemists and masters alike, we go off to war…and to certain death. I want to see you again…my heart is cold, not from fear or resolution of the end of my life. I want to see you again. I want to see you again…

Faera woke up in a frantic heap on her camp bed, worry creasing her brows. She has to go back! To make sure nothing happens to Lucian, have to make sure he is safe! Almost desperately, she tried to go back to sleep, but to no avail. She is too troubled and active to return to rest. With a strangled cry, Faera jumped up and rushed to the closest medicine cabinet, grabbing a bottle of her famous sleep draught and instantly gulped the whole thing down in one go. She is dead asleep before she even crashed onto the warmness of her bed.
Faera "woke up" in a daze and instantly wished she hadn't. Is this a nightmare? So much red, so much red everywhere. Is this…blood? It is. And the whole sandy beach is covered with it. Mangled bodies lay everywhere, both the familiar black robbed bodies and the strange armored remains of soldiers. Faera panicked. She runs.
Lucian Radyon lay at the edge of the shore, blood dripping into the waters. Around him lay the dead bodies of all ten masters of Draconian, and in the waters countless other bloodied cadavers float. Scarlet life liquid dyes the whole ocean red. He laughs, then instantly regrets it as coughs seized him. The alchemists didn't go down without a fight. The king's army is totally annihilated. Fifty men and women against twenty hundred skilled knights, and all have perished within a single day. With a satisfied smirk, the red haired man steadied his breathing, waiting for his end to come. His curse is complete and his job is done. A small regret still hangs about his mind.

Pitter patter footsteps can be barely heard on the sandy beach. Weakly, Lucian raised his head and stared at the distance in a daze. Faera? Almost as though hallucinating, a girl runs along the battlefield, looking frightened and in a panic, calling out his name. White stands out from the color of red…He tried to call out to her, but his voice no longer strong enough to carry over the wind. The small movement caught the girl's eyes and she instantly froze in her tracks, heading in a dash straight for him.

"Lucian!" She crashed into the sand near him, cradling his broken and bleeding body. Tears fell freely from her eyes, falling onto his cold, cold face.

She's crying for me. A small and peaceful smile crept back to his face. The hardened eyes gentled at the sight of the crying girl. She came back. He had spoken without notice.

"Stupid! Of course I came back! How could you do this to me?" Faera cried with grief. If only she could…why couldn't she do anything?

"Don't blame yourself…" Lucian raised a hand with effort to caress away her tears, hands lingering on her cheeks. "I would have died someday…"

"But not like this! You can't leave me like this…please….don't leave me…" Faera tried desperately to hold onto him. His hands are so cold, there's blood everywhere. Why does he look so peaceful? How can he just leave her here alone after all they had gone through?

"Faera…cough….the past eleven years had been the happiest years of my life. And that is only because you were there with me." He paused with effort and tried to continue. "I…I never told you that formula for breaking the red algae…"

"And you are worried about that?" Faera hugged him closer as more tears fell from her eyes. They landed with a tinkle onto Lucian's hands. Crystal beads that washed away the red of the blood. He almost smiled. His angel is so pure even still.

"Come here, Faera." He whispered weakly. "I want to tell you something."

She bended down carefully, still holding onto him and lowered her ear to listen to him. Her eyes widened in surprise and pain after he finished speaking. Lucian leaned close to her embrace, and closed his eyes for the final time. He had done all he can do in this life. He wishes her happiness.

Shocked beyond crying, Faera looked at the body of the peaceful man, now eight years her senior. She had known him since he was a young boy, and now she holds him in death. She had let this happen. If she could only have done something to stop it, then he would still be alive. She can't cry anymore, her eyes had lost their luster. She sobbed a bit, and looked at the pale hand that is still clutching hers. Artist hands, she had once called them, and he had smiled for her.

On her palm rests a single platinum ring, strangely designed with what she now recognize as the symbol of High Master of Draconian. Looking around her, she realized where she is. The silent beaches of Blood Edward Isle had never looked more ghastly and haunted. Before she could let out another pained cry, Faera disappeared in a flurry. The bleeding moon shines its red light down upon the sandy beach, where everything is stained scarlet by the blood of the followers of dark arts. The ocean waters glimmered with crimson. Lucian Radyon had left his mark upon the death ground of his fellow colleagues. He had cursed the royal families' line forever, and set blaze upon the very waters of the island.

"Let those who dared touch these sacred waters face penalty, for this is resting grounds of the lost souls who never leave, may the line of that foolish man meet a most torturous death. Here we of the darkness fall into eternal sleep. They shall never find peace."
Back in her camp bed, Faera woke up with tears staining her face. It's as if she just woke up from a very bad reality. Or was it a dream? The pain is still there, her heart is deeply wounded. Never had she faced a lost so tremendous that her whole being shook with just the thought of him. Trying to muffle her anguished cry with her hand, she noticed an object of interest. There in her palm sits an old silver ring, the same one she had found on Blood Edward Isle weeks ago. It looks ancient and antiqued now, but she can still remember how more than three hundred years ago, he had handed the same, but much shinier ring into her hand. He had whispered the last words to her, the formula to end the curse of the red algae. It is most ironic how his words pained

her more than they should have….

"The curse ends with…these words. I love you and only you, from Lucian Radyon."
She rushed out of her tent in her flowing night gown, eyes sore from tears and the rushing wind. All along the path she took remained quiet. Neither sounds nor signs of movement other than hers exist. Strange shadows swirled around, but she took no notice of them in her haste. She run onto the beach of the crimson algae and stood where she had last held him. Her knees give out and she kneeled where he had lain dead so many, many years ago. Her tears fell once again as she remembered so clearly what had happened and the blood that covered her hands.

"I love you too, Lucian," she whispered with voice hoarse from tears, "I …love you too." She buried her face into her hands to escape the torrent of tears and pain striking her heart again. The lone shadow on the ground went unnoticed by the distraught girl; neither did she feel its silent whispers and ghostly embrace. The crimson algae glow once again, red and scarlet against the background of the waters.

News Report from England Central

August 30, 1984 Blood Edward Isle, England

We had the honor today of celebrating the opening of Edward family's thirtieth business line, the Edward Island Resort. Bordering the beautiful and peaceful island is the very much famous Meror Algae, founded and named by the one and only Dr. Faera Penelope Viscount. Dr. Viscount is a rising star in the land of science, one which England is proud to present to the rest of the world. The seventeen year old girl is a prodigy chemist and had participated in countless unimaginable experiments and pioneer project. As Mr. Edward says, "I had absolute faith that she would be able to solve any problems. The Edward family only associates itself with the best."

Apparently the gorgeous red algae the island is famous for is poisonous by nature, but had been miraculously cured by Dr. Viscount. Unfortunately the scientist refuses to make her formula world wide known, stating that it is a secret she shall keep forever. Well, one thing we know for sure is that millions shall be attracted to the resort simply to see the amazing plant life. Dr. Viscount herself had been offered a permanent home on the island bordering the beach, a most generous gift from Mr. Edward. She had accepted immediately. We wonder if those two are more than just business partners, there are indeed rumors of romance flying about. Those who had wished to make acquaintance with her will certainly find her there, though as her colleagues say "Viscount is a stubbornly eccentric person. She won't be found unless she wants to be found." Fans and maniacs out there, this is your chance to meet her in person! So grab your luggage and make the reservation to stay at Edward Island Resort. It's an experience that will make a big impression in your life!

"Butler," a blonde male wearing a fancy bathrobe snapped his fingers as he calmly sipped wine from a crystal glass. He sits on an extravagant sofa in front of a large estate.

"Yes, Mr. Edward, sir." An older man wearing neat black suit entered. Edward toyed around with his drink in a careless manner.

"Do you think I am romantically involved with that scientist?" He looked at his servant in an uncaring manner. Butler stuttered and immediately refuted.

"That is outrageous! Her?"

"Hmmm, well, you know what to do about it." So speaking, the blonde man threw him the newspaper article and stood up. As his right hand man walked out to give a few people "the talk" and maybe sue a few news offices into bankruptcy, young master Edward walked out to the balcony with his drink.

Looking thoughtfully at his land, the millionaire spoke to no one in particular as he enjoyed the night view.

"Would it be so very impossible?"

Deathly quiet and cold. And so much red…red…red. It stains everywhere, the sands, the trees. The dead walked around clumsily, robed in tattered black cloaks. And on that beach again…he will be waiting there.
Faera woke up with a jolt. Clutching at her plushie tightly, she breathed slowly in an attempt to quiet down her beating heart. Softly, she stood up and walked up to the balcony not two meters away from her bed. Moonlight shimmered down on her petite form, lighting up the singly platinum ring that adorns her. Small breezes teased at her hair.

It has been a month since she lived here now, in this fancy house that overlooks the beach. The beach where he died… Faera doesn't have to stay here, doesn't have to keep reminiscing about the past. But it doesn't feel right to just leave her best friend's death and walk away as though nothing happened. He was her best friend, and the first person other than her parents to tell her he loved her. He would want her to be here, if he had been alive. So Faera dreamed, even if all her dreams are nightmares now, she would continue dreaming. Even if all her dreams bring her fear and pain, she would continue hoping that he would appear in her dream again. Because she knew now, as well as some others, that dead souls walk these very sands…

A small breeze blew by girl, encircling her as though in an embrace…she sighed and let out a small, tired smile…

"Hmm, don't worry, I won't leave again…"

Ever since the creation of the fancy resort a year ago, Blood Edward Isle is no longer deemed a mystery. Sure, there's still the occasional gossip about "curses" and how "dead souls walk the land," but compared to before, the island is buzzing with people and noises. Only the island's eastern beach has been left undisturbed. Some says that it's an honor to the spirits; others say that it's to protect the Meror Algae. People visit, of course, and the place is said to be one of the most attractive sites for couples to declare their love for each other. Under the pale moonlight and blessings from the crimson rose lighted sea, love will eternally be granted.

Amidst the crowds of tourists also came fans and scientific maniacs, demanding to see the fabled Faera Penelope Viscount. None of them ever found her. It is most mysterious and frightening how everyone knew the approximate location of her home yet none could actually make it to see her. The brave ones who tried stated that all the paths leading to her mansion are rigged with traps and mazes of all sort. Others say dark shadows and restless souls haunt the grounds to her very gates. All by all none had the honor of visiting the elusive scientist in her home yet. It's as if a void had appeared and swallowed the girl whole; her existence is considered one of the mysteries of the island.

As for Faera herself…