I awoke to find Stephen leaning over me worriedly. "Rina, what's wrong?"

I stretched lazily and smiled up at him. "Nothing. I just slept."

He pulled me up to sit up, but I curled up on the grass and pulled him down to lay beside me. He let me, but asked, "WHat are we doing?"

"Lucid dreaming. Somehow, your dreams are connected to mine, so I guess it makes sense that link in our minds, means that put together, we have enough consciousness for one of us to lucid dream and the other one to piggyback on that.."

He sat up. "Lucid dreams?"

I nodded. "Mmm. That's when you're asleep but you're aware of it."

Out of the blue, Fen wrapped his arms around me and squeezed me tightly to his chest. I didn't mind. At least, I didn't until my mother caught us.

"Katherina!"

I shoved Stephen away and whirled to meet her gaze. "Yes?"

Fen shifted uncomfortably. "Is this where you met Mrs. Reid's son?" my mother demanded.

I exchanged a glance with Fen. No use lying to a dream. "Yes."

She nodded. "Okay. My time is limited here, so listen to what I say. You and Stephen are linked telepathetically. You are the first pair of opposite gender to be connected like this. And I know that you won't believe me, but it was one of those pesky gifts that fairies run around giving to people. You two will meet in your dreams every night until one or both of you die. You will be alone and perfectly conscious that you're asleep unless you purposely force yourselves to forget or unless you both consent to bring someone who doesn't belong in. You can communicate while you're awake, but it takes some practice. Essentially, you must become best friends or else be driven out of your mind from constant contact. In case you haven't guessed, Sally and I are bound together, and the first child of the first child of each family will be one of the bound ones. Usually, if the two oldest are of different genders, there will be two pairs; the two oldest daughters and the two oldest sons. Sally and I can only enter your link once apiece, and last night didn't count because you two were both fully asleep then."

"Can we block each other out?" I interrupted. Fen squeezed my hand hard.

Mom hesitated. "Yes. It hurts, more than you know, but it is possible."

I nodded. "I'm going to confirm this with you two when we--"