"I've been reading Kvornan's grimoire," Aouregan says.
"So, what's in there? The secret of immortality? A recipe for transmuting base metals into gold?" Farrell asks.
"What it appears to be is a book of fables. I even recognize some of the stories, the tales my mother used to tell me."
"And you think there's some hidden message in all that?" Farrell asks.
"I don't really know. But Kvornan did say it contained the key to great power."
"Maybe he just really likes fairy tales," Farrell says, pulling her close to him.
"I think it's more than that," Aouregan chucks softly, "But whatever knowledge is in there is hidden well, and I may never discover it. Perhaps I'm too familiar with the stories to see any deeper into them. But maybe our children will figure it out. At the very least, it makes for a fine family heirloom."
Adolescence brings many changes, and for young witches, it brings on new surges of power.
Shadow embraces his gift, and goes to his mother for instruction on controlling and increasing his magical abilities.
Aurora has inherited her mother's talent as well, but she has her father's mind, and even his skepticism. Though she possesses magic, she does not trust it, and prefers the more logical pursuit of science and mathematics.
"Tell me a story," Shadow requests. Iola came home from school with him so they could do their homework together, but an afternoon of memorizing dull facts is not as interesting to him as hearing the tales she can weave, seemingly out of nowhere.
"Once upon a time," she begins, as she always does, because there is a formula that must be followed, "A very long time ago, there was a dragon. He was out alone, not hunting. Just exploring. This particular dragon was not as happy in his nest as his brothers were, and often went out on his own, just to be by himself. While he was out he saw, from a distance, a pair of men, hunting. Now, this was the first time the dragon had ever seen humans; until very recently, none of their kind had ever been to the part of the world where these dragons lived. So of course, the dragon was very curious about these new creatures. But, as curious as he was, he was even more interested in their prey. The men were hunting a horse, but it was no ordinary horse."
"A unicorn?" Shadow guesses.
"No, not a unicorn," Iola says, with an indulgent smile, "The men shot their arrows at the horse, and wounded, she transformed back to her true shape. You see, she was a fairy who had taken the form of a horse. The dragon was smitten by her beauty, and fell on the hunters, exacting terrible revenge for what they done to the fairy."
"No, but she was gravely injured. The dragon lifted her up into his arms and carried her to the other fairies to be healed."
"His arms? If he was a dragon, wouldn't he have claws, and wings?"
"Only when he chooses to. Dragons have two forms, you see, the great lizard form we associate them with, and their secret form, which is actually very similar to a human's."
"Are you just making this up as you go along?" Shadow laughs, "Or did you you read this somewhere?"
"I'm not making it up," Iola answers, "It is written in our records. But I haven't read that history; I've seen it, Shadow. Because it's your history,"
"My history? How?"
"That dragon and that fairy are your ancestors."
"And you know this how?"
"You inherited your mother's talent, her magic. Well, I inherited something from my father, too. I see the past. All the stories I've ever told you have been the histories I've seen in other people."
"Why haven't you ever told me this before?" Shadow asks.
"Because I'm not supposed to talk about it," she says, "And it's the kind of thing most people will just think you are making up, or worse, think you are crazy for saying. I'm glad you believe me, Shadow," she finishes with a slight blush, "I don't like keeping secrets from you."
"What else have you been keeping from me?" Shadow asks with a laugh, pouncing on her and pulling her down onto the floor with him, "Confess, or I'll have to torture you," he says, tickling her until she doubles over in laughter.
"I do have one more secret to confess," she whispers as they lay on the rug together, panting to catch their breath.
"Let me go first," Shadow says, smiling affectionately, "My secret is that I love you. Now, it's your turn."
"That's not a secret, Shadow," Iola says, "You told me you loved me when we were children."
"I guess I did," Shadow says, "But we were just kids...I'm serious, now. I love you. I want you to be my girlfriend."
"I already am your girlfriend, Shadow. You just hadn't asked yet," she answers him, "I don't see the future as often or as clearly as I can see the past, but every vision I've ever had of us, every possible future I've glimpsed, we've been together."
"So that's your other secret, you have the sight? Like my mother?"
"Are we going to be happy?" he asks.
"It's just glimpses into futures that might be. I don't see everything that's going to happen," she says quietly. "What I've seen of us, though, is very happy."
Shadow smiles and squeezes her hand. "Here's to our future, then."
"So, what's he deal with your brother and my sister?" Kyle asks Jesse, no looking up from his homework. He'd never been close friends with Jesse Horner before, but now that Delaney has gone head over heels for his delinquent brother, Kyle made a point of inviting home with him after school to question him.
"I stay out of Jack's business," Jesse says, a little harshly. It's enough of a struggle coming out from under his father's reputation as the town loser, and having Jack as a brother just makes it harder. He had hoped when Kyle invited him over he was finally going to get a chance at making a friend who wasn't going to hold his family history against him, but once again it's all about Jack.
"Hey, Kyle," Cassidy calls, barging into her brother's room, "Oh, where's Kyle?" she asks his guest who she finds alone in Kyle's room.
"He went down to kitchen, he'll be back up in a minute, he said," Jesse tells her.
"You're Jesse Horner," Cassidy says, "Your brother..."
"Is dating your sister, I know," Jesse sighs, "And you'd rather he weren't. I'd rather he wasn't related to me, but I can't do anything about that, either."
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean--"
"No, it's all right," Jesse says, trying to recover from his bad first impression on the pretty teen, "It's just, no one ever sees me, they just see Jack's brother, you know?"
"Actually I do know. I'm Delaney's sister, after all. Sure, she's no Jack Horner, but she's the one that gets all the attention."
"I'd be happy to pay attention to you," Jesse says smiling flirtatiously.
"Aren't you going steady with Wren Woods?" Cassidy rebuffs his advances.
Unaware that her siblings are busy grilling Jesse for information, Delaney is downstairs writing a love letter to Jack, who couldn't come home with her this afternoon because he's in detention.
New wrinkles have sparked a midlife crisis for Elliot. "My career is over and I'm getting old," he says to Claire, "I must not be as attractive to you know I was when me met."
"Elliot, you just get more handsome as you mature," Claire gushes, "And I'm the luckiest woman in Drake's Hollow to be with you."
Late that evening, Jack Horner pays a visit to the Brannon house, tossing pebbles up at Delaney's window to get her attention.
Delaney gets up to investigate the noise, and seeing Jack waiting for her, she dresses quickly and runs downstairs to meet him.
They sneak off together to hang out outside the sports club by the driving range that no one visits at night.
"So, I've heard a rumor that you're the one who stole all the chalk from the teacher's supply closet," Jack says as they sit close together, watching the stars.
"Huh, I didn't think anyone saw me," Delaney answers.
"You know what people are going say, Laney. That I'm a bad influence on you..."
"I don't care what people say, Jack, about you, or me," Delaney says, sitting up to lean in close to him, "We're our own world, we don't need any of them telling us who to be or what to do."
Having 5 teens in the house at once makes it very hard to pay attention to all of them. I didn't realize until after I was going through my screenshots for this chapter that I only had one pic of Aurora as a teen. And not a very good pic, either, lol.
So, Jesse Horner comes home with the kids after school. He is going stedy with another teen in town, but he has the flirty trait, and he kept flirting with Cassidy. Then she'd flirt back and he'd reject her flirts because he's in a relationship. I managed to get a pic of the one time Cassidy spurned his flirt attempt. Later that night I got an SP pop up saying he and his girlfriend broke up. haven't decided if Cassidy will pursue him or not.
Shadow's favorite color is pink. Making a pink bedroom for a teenage boy is a challenge in itself.
Other favorite colors in this family: Kyle and Delaney like Spiceberry, Cassidy likes Hot Pink, Aurora likes White, Farrel like Spice Brown, Aouregan likes one of the dark green shades, and Elliot likes White. Shelly was into Hot Pink.