Prologue

Time is a strange thing. Then again so is reality, you convince yourself I think therefore I am. But are you? It's an interesting concept to think about. There are tiny cracks in the universe, wherever you go. It's nothing to worry about and is perfectly natural as far these things go but all the same they are worth noting because things can slip through cracks and out onto the other side. The cracks are small holes if not gateways between worlds. They used to be a lot bigger many years ago allowing what is known as the stone henge to slip through realities. But the smallest of items can slip through too. This "story" is about them all. Either way that is of no matter to you now. If you have one of the pens then let it guide you, if not, know this is fiction.

Once upon a time there lived a beautiful princess. Her name was Parai Noya. She was only 8 but was to be the third in line for the throne of peninsula and on the day of her coronation her father, the mighty king with a sword always by his side and the wisdom of a seer, gave her a present. He called it the fountain of youth as he bestowed on her what is now known as an ordinary fountain pen. However this was many years before we were believed to have such instruments. Despite Parai's great love for her father she could not help but be disappointed at his small gift. They were a well-known wealthy family, did he not want to give his daughter an expensive present, was she not worth it? On seeing her distraught expression he knelt down.

"What is wrong my dear?" he asked.

"Father, I do not wish to be rude but this is just...just..." she trailed off.

" - a valuable item many would long for if they knew its powers." The king finished.

"Father don't you understand!?" she cried in frustration. "It's not a fountain of youth, it's not even a sword and it's hardly a new loyal servant! How much did this pathetic instrument cost?"

Parai was in mid-strop when her father cut in.

"I nearly had to sell my crown for that fountain. Calm my dear. This pen is one of many scattered throughout the universe, each very special."

But he could say no more as a servant entered the room. He stood and turned to leave but paused to look upon his daughter one last time.

"Take it to your coronation." He said sadly but in the firm tone of a command.

That afternoon everybody in the country assembled in the huge halls of the palace. Parai smiled as she walked towards her new throne through the long aisle that had been custom made for such an occasion. Her parents stood by her side and watched as the crown was slowly lowered –

BANG!

Her eyes widened in panic. The golden headdress had only been an inch away from her but now it clattered from the servant's hands. A man with a gun stood at the other end of the aisle. They'd been afraid that Cairo would strike soon but not this soon...they'd made a pact! But that was the problem with the two countries at war being practically next door neighbours, one could rebel and the other wouldn't have any time to react. She glanced down at the crown which lay by her ruby red shoes. Her shoes had been silver. Her gaze passed over the man who had been about to crown her. A pool of blood was leaking from his chest. His face was pale and his eyes were closed. She gasped and felt like vomiting yet she knew now was not the time.

The whole ceremony was slaughter. Parai was lucky not to be taken prisoner. She no longer knew whether her family was alive as she ran. Tears streamed down her face. She clutched the pen close to her heart knowing that it might be all she would ever have to remember her father by. It was not long until she could run no further, the crowds of terrified subjects were screaming and struggling to escape. It was a wonder she'd even got that far .Then the man who'd committed the foul play in the first place rounded the corner. Even worse he saw her. He held up his gun. She heard another earsplitting bang but it barely seemed to register as her mind went into shock. Time seemed to move in slow motion as the bullet sped towards her. She felt her life flash before her eyes. Then a transparent blue dome formed around her. It reflected the bullet. Back into the source. The man stumbled back clutching his arm. She finally understood. It was called the fountain of youth because it kept you safe from harm, it tried to keep you innocent, unscathed in any possible way. It wasn't helping her mental state though. At that very thought the dome expanded, soon it was covering everyone apart from the man with the gun. Yet from the bewildered looks on the civilian's faces as more bullets were reflected it was clear that they couldn't see the force field like Parai could. The killer crumpled to the floor. It was later to be known as the magic of the princess.

Many years later when order had been restored to both countries Parai was finally crowned queen of Peninsula, by now she was a young lady but she was not happy. All the fighting had traumatised her and she was so afraid. She even began to fear her closest servants thinking that they weren't trying to help, that they just wanted the fountain of youth. These excessive suspicions of others' motives kept her inside the palace nervous of what could happen if she left. Eventually she confined herself to her room, refused to eat anything made by her cooks and put the fountain of youth on a chain around her neck. Many of her servants claimed this was the beginning of her descent into madness. But today it is known as a quality called Paranoia. Parai Noya, it's not hard to see how the name developed.

It's a commonly mistaken fact that there are 10, as that's a nice round number, but in fact there are 9 pens. For centuries the secret of the pen has stayed secret. That myth was just a taster of what they can do. Of course every now and then it's been mentioned in literature when people say the pen is mightier than the sword but only as an expression or phrase. Nobody ever understood its true meaning.

Apart from us that is - we are the Wielders. It is our job to protect the secret. My family has passed it down for generations but only through the young men. The scrolls travel with it too in case any of our beliefs ever needed justifying. After all, it's hard to believe in a collection of measly pens forever, generally I have better things to do like going out, getting a girlfriend for once; instead of staying home and babysitting, it's not like they're under threat anyways they're freaking pens! Back to the scrolls. They contain all the folklore and myths about the pens. Everything they've done anything they've lead to be is recorded in there. I shouldn't say any more though. I can't say any more. I'm late.