Okay, it’s Day 3 and I’m still feeling this Star Wars vibe. I know that I’m leaving some gaps in the story, but I’ll go back and fill them in later. The “heralds” need to bring a message to the “Obi-Wan” in my story. So, here goes:
A man wearing a hooded cloak exited the cave. He swung a bag off from his shoulder and placed it on the ground. I could see him pulling something out of the bag and putting it down on a rock in front of him. “Look,” I pointed. “That must be him. The Great Ghost Warrior.” I sprinted up the hill towards him. I could hear the others in our group follow me.
“Excuse me, sir,” I called out, as I maneuvered around the rocky terrain. I could feel the sand slide under my boots, so I kept an eye on the ground in front of me. “Are you the Great Ghost Warrior?”
The man in the hooded cloak stopped what he was doing to stare at me. He reached into his pocket and pulled out something. It was a sword.
“Charlie,” Shivani shrieked behind me, as the man lifted his sword. “Get down.”
I felt her shove me from behind. I landed behind a rock, just as the man brought down his sword. A few moments passed before I heard it. Laughter. The man in the cloak was laughing hysterically.
Shivani marched up to him and snarled. “What’s so funny?”
“You guys,” the man said, laughing. “You’re all like, oh, my God, duck. Here comes a dude with a sword.” He collapsed on the ground, convulsing in mirth. “And I was just cutting my sandwich.”
I sat up and looked at the rock. Sure enough, there was a whole sandwich resting on a napkin. I stood up and dusted the dirt from my pants.
Shivani stood over the man, arms on her hip. I recognized the flash in her gold eyes. She was about to punch him. Since we needed his help, I scrambled between them. “I’m okay, Shivani,” I said, before turning to extend my hand to the laughing guy. “Hi, I’m Charlie Weaver. You must be the Great Ghost Warrior.”
“I am?” The man stood up and looked around. I felt a pang when I realized that he was as tall as I was. My gaze narrowed. He looked like someone who could be a hero. Like me. “Okay.”
Aryana stepped forward, visibly trembling with excitement. Her cheeks were flushed a pretty pink. “I’ve been looking for you for a long time.”
The man’s eyes widened. He smiled and pulled back the hood on his cloak. I blinked. The Great Ghost Warrior was a lot younger than I was expecting. Like not much older than I was. “You have? Well, sweetheart, here I am.” He took her small hand in his and touched his lips to it. She flushed a deeper red. “How can I help you?” His gaze lingered on her face.
Shivani snorted and stepped between Aryana and the man, breaking their grip. “Oh, please. This isn’t the Great Ghost Warrior.”
“No, it is not,” Professor Serenity said. I glanced behind me. The rest of the Elders had caught up with us. Professor Serenity raised an eyebrow. “Hello, Ryan.”
The young man grinned at her. With perfect white teeth. I should have allowed Shivani to punch him. “Hi, Mom.”
“Mom?” Shivani sputtered. All of us stared at the two of them in shock. The resemblance between them was more apparent when they stood next to each other. Despite his dark blond hair, Ryan’s face was very similar in to Professor Serenity’s. They shared the same green eyes.
“You have a son?” I asked, feeling slightly injured. I understood Shivani’s outrage. Ever since I arrived in Bharat, Professor Serenity had been like a parent to me. But it was all an act. She already had a son. This guy who was eyeing Aryana like she was a piece of meat. My irritation grew when I saw Aryana smile back at him.
“Yes. This is Ryan,” Serenity nodded. “Ryan, this is Charlie Weaver.”
When I extended my hand again, Ryan slapped it. I pulled it back, unsure of what to make of him. “Hey, Charlie, nice to meet you,” he said easily.
Professor Serenity, who was the most cordial person I’ve ever met in my life, actually rolled her eyes. I felt a tinge of satisfaction. “You’ll have to excuse Ryan. He’s spent a lot of time in your realm.” She gestured towards Shivani. “And this is….”
“Oh, you don’t have to tell me who this is, Mom,” Ryan said, winking at Shivani. “I know all about the Warrior girl. What’s up, fist fighter?” He smirked at her. “Has it been a punch-free day? Is that what’s making you cranky? No chance to work out all of that aggression.”
Ryan grinned, when Shivani scowled at him. He walked around her, looking her up and down. “You know, you’d be hot if you’d smile once in awhile.” He pointed to her all-black attire. “And maybe wear something pretty for a change. With color.”
“That’s it,” Shivani took at step towards him, raising a fist. I wrapped my arms around her waist and held her back.
Director Fussybottom frowned at Shivani, before turning his attention to Ryan. His face actually lit up. “Ryan, my boy, it’s good to see you.”
Ryan’s entire expression changed. His smile was sincere. “Robert, it’s good to see you too.” The two of them actually embraced.
“I should have known,” Shivani muttered.
There was genuine concern on Ryan’s face when he asked, “What brings you to my territory?”
“We’re looking for,” Director Fussybottom hesitated. He glanced at Professor Serenity. “Your father.”