Saturday, July 19, 2014

Sunday Sampler Sirens Chapter 6 excerpt

Getting closer to finishing Sirens which will be a stand alone novel incorporating a few characters from other novels.  In the meantime, enjoy an excerpt of Chapter Six!

Chapter Six
Two days can go by in a hurry when you don’t want it to.  I wanted to leave at the same time I didn’t.  I held the calling shell in my hand.  It was such a small thing, and very delicate.  It looked like it belonged safely in a curio cabinet rather than in my hand.  Jack told me how to use it to find our fourth siren.  And I already knew what direction to go.  I wished it would have given an exact location as to what town, state or even country.  It only pointed in the direction we needed to go.  I shook my head, and put the shell into the small case Jack had given me.  I hoped that she, our fourth siren, wasn’t too far away, and at least still in the United States.

“Good news my ladies,” Jack sung as he came down the hallway and into the living room.
Sophie, Beannca and I were sitting on the couch finishing our coffee.  Jack looked like a black velvet curtain had attacked him.  He was dressed head to toe in the material.  His pants were fitted, and a long coat swirled around his knees with a peek of a collared shirt underneath.  On his head was a wide brimmed hat, complete with black feathers.
I raised my eyebrows as Sophie smiled at him. 
“You didn’t have to go to so much trouble dressing so elaborately just to see us off,” Sophie said taking the final sip of her coffee.
“I’m going to a fashion show in Avalon, but more importantly, I found a way to get you to your fourth member of your tribe quicker.”  Jack stood in front of us with his twinkling eyes.  “You can use the portal here in the apartment.  I will block it from the guardian’s ever watchful eye by mirroring its activity.” His smile deepened. 
“They won’t even know it’s being used, and will provide you safe passage.”  He shook his head, and let out a victorious sigh.  “I do have to say, I never stop amazing myself.”
“But how do I work the shell in the portal?  I haven’t even been through that many portals.”  I stood up and looked at Jack as he adjusted his ridiculous hat.
“You have two portal connectors, so…”  He looked at himself in the mirror that hung on the wall beside the door.
I stepped behind him, and crossed my arms.  I could see my reflection in the mirror as Jack ignored me. “So,” I prompted him.
“Portal connections,” Jack said and seemed a bit distracted.  “I’m sorry.  I’m just overloaded right now.  Let’s just get to the portal before I forget what I’m doing.”
“Right now?”  I huffed.  “We can’t just hop up and go like we’re going downtown to see a movie.  It’s a portal that could lead us to something disastrous, and not to mention get caught by the guardians.  How would you explain that if we all get caught?”
Jack flicked towards me with his hands.  “Oh, don’t be so negative.  I’ve been around not only this world, but several others that only a select few can have entry to.”  He smiled with his pink tinged lips.  Was he wearing lipstick?  “I’m a professional, and this will be a walk in the park for me.  I should’ve thought about it earlier.  Now let’s go.”

“I don’t like leaving so abruptly like this,” Sophie said as she walked beside me down the dim hallway.
“I know,” I replied.  “We could tell Jack that we changed our minds, and don’t want to go.”
I glanced at Sophie, and could almost see what she was thinking.  We had a taste of our past, and a chance to go to a safe haven.  We could live as we wanted, do as we wanted, and without the librarianship telling us what to do and where we had to live.  And for me, I could live without constantly looking behind my back every second of the day.  We had to make this work.
“Now, it’s simple,” Jack said standing beside the portal panel that was embedded in the wall.  “Hannah, hold the shell in front of you, and you will feel it pull in the direction you want to go.  “Sophie and Beannca, you will place your hands over the shell.”  Jack looked at his wristwatch.  “I’m going to be late for tea and crumpets with the fairies.  They hate tardy guests.  Oh well,”
“We put our hands over the shell, and then what?”  Sophie asked.
Jack looked at us with a smile from under his black velvet feathered hat.  “That’s it, dears.” He shrugged his shoulders.  “Now step in the portal and do as I say.  You are sirens.  Where knowledge fails you, instinct will take over.  Let go of your insecurities, and be who you are.”
I looked at Sophie, and then at Beannca.  Her eyes were slightly red from under all of her makeup, and she hardly said anything to us this morning.  I felt I should say something to her when the portal began to hum.
“Quick, get the shell out,” Sophie motioned towards the leather pouch I carried it in.
I held the crystal shell in my hand in front of me.  It felt magnetic.  Beannca and Sophie placed their hands inches from it as it began to glow. 
“Jack,” Sophie looked at him and smiled as the portal grew in strength with swirling colors.  “Thanks for everything.”
Jack smiled and tipped his obnoxious hat at us before the hallway, Jack, and our old way of life faded.  There was no turning back now.

“I’m sorry, but that is how it works sometimes,” Maggie said on the other end of the phone line.  “Nothing is certain, and all I can do is keep trying, that is, if you still want to.”
I twirled the phone cord around my finger.  Nolan and I weren’t going to be parents anytime soon. “Yes, we do want to keep trying.  How long until we find something out?” I asked in a hopeful voice.
“That’s another thing—we won’t.  Everything will be by the seat-of-our-pants.  I will let you know when something comes up.”
“Thanks Maggie, for everything.”  I hung up the phone, and looked over at Nolan.
“She shouldn’t have been so positive about everything.  Maggie said that we’d be parents, and she could make it happen for us.  She really basically lied to us, and led us on.”  Nolan sat at the kitchen table with his shaking hands around his coffee mug.
I went over to him and wrapped my arms around him and placed my cheek to his as I stood behind him.  “Maggie didn’t lie or lead us on.  How did you expect this to work?  It isn’t even legal.  Things aren’t going to happen with a snap of our fingers.”  I sat down in the chair next to Nolan and ran my finger over his.  “It didn’t happen today, and probably won’t happen tomorrow, but it will happen for us one day.”
Nolan gazed at me with his blue eyes.  His hands quit trembling, and I felt the air around us calm as we sat in silence.  Suddenly, the sunlight that streamed into our tiny kitchen faded.  Thunder rumbled so strong that it rattled our windows, and even inside my chest.  Nolan went to the window, and then grabbed his raincoat.
“Looks like a storm, Mae,” he said and put on his boots.  “I’m going to go and put the tractor away.”
“I just put a load of laundry on the line.”  I got up as well, and grabbed my basket.
Nolan went to go get the tractor as I scrabbled to remove the clothespins from my towels and sheets, and shove them into my basket.  I silently cursed at the storm.  I wanted to get my laundry dried, I wanted it to be a nice day, and…I wanted to have someone call me mom.
I had one more clothes line to go of several towels when the wind violently picked up.  The sky swirled, and clouds churned in grey masses as I looked up at them.  I felt their turmoil, their erratic emotions, and desire to destroy.  It was like something was materializing in it.  It was forming into something solid, something that could process thoughts, feelings, and wants.  Was it human, entity or something conjured by some distraught member of the enchanted community? I had never felt this way with the weather before. I had felt a connection to the storm, but did storms have feelings?  They consisted of wind, rain, and lightning, not emotions.  This was a different kind of storm, one I was drawn to.
Lightning flashed, and the wind blew harder.  I let my clothes basket slip from my hands to the ground as I kept my eyes on the encroaching storm.   It didn’t belong here in Deadwood, Illinois.
I glared at the boiling clouds as the thunder groaned at me, and lightning warned me with each flash.  The trees bent in the wind, and my towels blew through the yard and garden.  The angry shades of grey clouds began to coordinate themselves into a rotating movement.  I’ve seen it many times living here, and I wasn’t the least bit frightened to run into the cellar.  It was a tornado, and it was headed towards our little white farm house.
I raised my arms, leaves rushed around me like snow, the howl of the wind challenged me, and I was ready for it.  
“Mae, get in the house!”  Nolan ran towards me, but I pushed him away.
“No, it can’t have our home!”  I screamed over the rush of the wind.
I could clearly see the twister in the distance.  It plucked trees from the ground, leveled the old barn in the pasture ground, and like a spoiled child, it turned towards us.  Nolan tried to get me to go inside, but I stayed ignoring his pleading voice.  He knew what I was, and that I was powerful when I wanted to be.  I had no intentions of challenging a storm, but I felt threatened.  And I wasn’t going to let it take what we had worked hard for.
My feet were solidly planted on the ground, and my hands held high with fingers spread.  It was a massive thing, and I was merely a speck of dirt in its way.  I kept my eyes on it, and like a scolding parent to a tantrum-throwing toddler, I didn’t budge, and prepared to show it who was in control.
Trees that could bend no more broke off, and were hurled through the air along with other debris that churned around Nolan and me.  It was like we were in a black soup being stirred with dashes of lightning and thunder.  Nolan stood behind me, and wrapped his arms around my waist.  I could barely hear him yell as the grey twister took Nolan’s truck and threw it through the air like a toy.
I felt hot anger rush through me, and I wanted to fight with even hotter anger towards it, but suddenly an idea shot through my head.  Nolan and I were surrounded by flying debris, and I knew much damage would be done if I didn’t do something fast. 
Anger only fed anger, hate only fed hate, and there was only one thing I could do to stop this destructive monster.  I closed my eyes, relaxed my arms, and held them out towards the twister.  I didn’t feel fear, hate or anger.  Instead, I released a very opposite emotion—love.
Just as the twister raged havoc on our barn, it suddenly let out a groan, and slowed releasing the remaining debris from its angry grip.
Nolan and I stood among the bits of wood, metal, and tree limbs.  We gazed up at the parting sky as the sun burned through the grey clouds.  I smiled with relief.
“Mae,” Nolan said my name timidly.  “Are you alright?”
I turned and wrapped my arms around him.  “Yes, but our barn isn’t.”  
“What was that?  What did you do?  Tornadoes don’t just stop like that.”  Nolan asked.
I didn’t know how to explain what I had just done, and I really didn’t even know I had that much power.  “It must be a siren thing.”  I shrugged my shoulders and smiled.
The sun’s rays cut through the grey clouds like slender daggers that brushed against the countryside.  I wasn’t scared of anything at that moment.  I new wave of confidence filled me. 
I looked at our partially destroyed barn as Nolan went over and started the cleanup.  Like church bells announcing the beginning of mass, a sudden realization washed over me.  I had a purpose to me being here, a desire to find something, and to not only help it, but also myself.  Something distant and forgotten was calling me, and I wasn’t sure what it was.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Midweek Mayhem Free downloads

Everybody loves freebies and right now at the Smashwords website, you can download all of my novels for free!  They will also be free on Barnes & Noble, kobo, and other retailers soon!  Take advantage of the free downloads that will go through the end of July!

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Midweek Mayhem Free Download for People of Fae

Free download for People of Fae on Smashwords and soon on Barns & Noble, kobo, and other retailers.  Enjoy!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Sunday Sampler Chapter 5 excerpt of Sirens

Still hope to have this one out soon. I'm really enjoying these characters, and find that their personalities flow easily into the story.  I hope you enjoy reading it and until I have it done, here's a sample of chapter five.

Chapter Five

“Jack, you said you only took a small portion of our powers.”  I watched him flip through a book that sat on the counter laden with various potion bottles.  “But,” I sat down on the bar stool across from him, “I…”  I looked away, and he lifted his eyes to me.
“But you what?”
I looked at the two books he held in each of his hands.  “You’re busy, and I’m bothering you.”
“No, I’m not that busy that I can’t listen to you.”  He sat the books down.  “If you are concerned about your abilities, they will return to you.  Though a portion is gone, you should start to feel them getting stronger, even as we speak.  I promise that I would never hurt any of you, and I even took an oath on the matter.  So Beannca dear, don’t worry.”  He smiled.
I let out a sigh.  “It isn’t that.”  He gave me a curious look.  “I can’t feel my abilities getting stronger because I’ve never used them.  When the librarianship told me I was a siren, I had no idea what they meant.  Only through, and by chance, I read a few things and heard a few things.  I knew we were to have abilities, but I didn’t know what they were or how to summon them.  I never felt anything magical, and wasn’t even sure if I had any.”  I shrugged my shoulders.  “But I guess I do since you took a portion of them.”
Jack smiled, and waved his hand over the counter strewn with bottles, books, and dried herbs.  “See this?”  He asked, and I nodded.  “I’ve been around for a long time, made many magical implements, but that doesn’t mean I know everything.  It’s trial and error.  And,” he placed his hand on a small intricately carved wooden box, “if I don’t keep trying, I won’t get anywhere.”
I looked between the box and Jack.  “So, what you mean is that I should try to find my siren virtues?” 
“It’s already in you.  You just have to learn how to summon them.”  He continued with his reading, and then opened another bottle as he read.
“But how do I do that?”
Jack lifted his eyes to me.  “That is something only you will know how to do.  Every siren or actually, every magical creature is different.  When the time comes, you will know.”

Jack was helpful, at the same time, he wasn’t.  Why couldn’t there just be a switch to turn on or a magic word to say?  Of course I never tried my abilities and growing up in an orphanage, I was never taught anything about who I was.  I never knew what it meant to be a siren—it was just a word the librarianship labeled me.  I was a member of the enchanted community with a pass to enter the librarian and guardianship world.  I didn’t belong, and would never be considered one of them. 
I went to the freezer to put ice in my glass of water.  The cubes weren’t frozen yet, but I put the slivers of ice in the glass anyway.  And as I filled the ice tray up again, I felt I was like the ice shards in my glass.  I wasn’t quite liquid and I wasn’t solid—I was caught in the middle not sure where I belonged.

Aaron had contacted Jack and told him that he’d be over this afternoon to visit.  I haven’t heard anything from Aaron since he brought me here.  I wondered how Bridget’s investigation into her death was going.  I still mourned her, and wished the only person, who truly cared for me, was still here. 
It was one in the afternoon, and if I still worked at The Glass Guardian, we would still be serving lunch.  I’d be seating guests and then later, I’d help with the clean up and get ready for the evening guests.  I loved working, and making Bridget proud.  A tear welled in my eyes as a knock came to the door.
Jack came out his study, and motioned for me to go down the hallway.  We were expecting Aaron, but Jack wanted to make sure it was him and only him.
I heard Jack open the door.  “Welcome Aaron Gorick, please come in.  And good, you’re alone.”  He closed the door behind him.
I came out of the hallway, and Aaron rushed towards me.  He lifted me in his strong arms, and we kissed.
“I’ve missed you,” I said gazing into his eyes that now reminded me of a comforting cup of coffee loaded with cream.
He smiled as tiny lines formed around his warm eyes.  I’ve never seen them before, and suddenly could feel a wave of uncertainty run through me.  Though I have looked into his eyes many times, and knew how many colors existed there, something new was in them.  It ran through me like a sudden wave, and it was so strong, I thought it could’ve pushed me to the floor.
“I missed you too, Beannca,” he said.  Even his voice had a tinge of something strange.
“Well if you don’t mind I have work to do.  And I don’t think you are in need of any of my entertaining services.”
Aaron nodded, and Jack slipped quietly into his study down the hall and shut his door.  Aaron motioned for us to sit on the couch.  I sat next to him still holding onto both of his hands.  They were strong and gentle at the same time.  I ran my thumb across the top feeling the slender bones underneath.
“This is the last time I’ll get to hold your hands like this.”  I looked up at Aaron.  Jack told us that no one knew of his ‘little project’ with siren magic, and told us to not tell anyone about us going to Murk Island. 
I wanted more than anything to tell Aaron.  He’d understand, he was a different kind of guardian, and he’d brought me here to protect me.  I knew he loved me more than anything.
“Why do you say that?”  He asked with amusement in his voice.  “How do you know?”
His eyes were filled with curiosity.  I opened my mouth, but no words came out at first.  “I—I don’t know.  It just feels like it, and really,” I laced my fingers through his, “how long can we be like this?  I can’t stay in hiding forever, and you can’t come and secretly visit me.”
He drew in a deep breath and removed his fingers from mine.  “You’re right,” he said regretfully.  “The investigation into Bridget’s death isn’t going well.  Actually, there isn’t really an investigation.”  Aaron’s voice filled with disgust as he looked away.  “They are charging you with murder, Beannca,” he said bluntly and even though I knew they would, his words shot through me like a knife.  “It isn’t right, and time is running out.  I can’t keep you here with Jack.  It’s too dangerous for him and for you.”
I pulled closer to Aaron wondering if he knew about the calling shell, Atlantis, and the whole plan Jack had devised.  Of course he had to know.  Aaron cared for me, and would even help us get to Atlantis.  He could probably work the portal, and we wouldn’t have to find another siren.
“You mean you know—” I started to say.
“I’ve got an apartment in Avalon located in Sidhe Hills historic district that you can stay at.  I don’t use it much, but it will be a safe place for you.”
I shook my head.  “Avalon?”
“Bea,” he said and placed his hands on my shoulders, and smiled.  “You’ll be safe, and no one will know you’re there.”
He didn’t know about Jack’s plan.  I wanted to tell him, but knew I couldn’t.  Instead, I smiled back.
“And you can transfer to Avalon?”  I asked hopefully as the smile faded from his lips.
“No,” he said regretfully.  “I can’t leave Chicago.” 
I felt my heart sink into my chest.
“Bea, I can’t simply run off.  I’ve obligations to uphold, and tradition to follow.  And there’s something else.”  He pulled out a silver ring, and held it between us.
It was unmistakable.  Tiny designs, called marks, curled around the ring that would turn gold when Aaron was married.
“You’re getting married?”  I could barely get the words out of my throat.
“It’s an arranged marriage.  And one that I didn’t approve of.”  I stood up, and went over to the window.
The city below moved this way and that.  They were oblivious to what was on the thirteenth floor of the Fisher Building, and I was oblivious to the reality that would always be there.  I had been living in a true fantasyland, where everyone I thought, lived happily ever after.
Aaron stepped behind me, and ran his hand down my arm.  I jerked away, and then turned to face him.
“I didn’t have intentions of this, and if I had a choice, I’d choose you.  Bea, you have to understand,” he said softly, “I have traditions to stick to, and this is part of those traditions.”
I gazed into his eyes studying them.  “You said if you could, you’d choose me.”  He nodded his head hesitantly.  “What if there was a chance, a way, an opportunity for us to be together.”
Aaron shook his head.  “Bea, what do you mean?”
“Would you come with me if I knew another way?”  I asked feeling the anger, hurt, and pain swirl inside of me.  Was it mine or his?
Aaron looked at me with confusion.  “I don’t think there is, darling.”  He said with a small smile.  “Look, I enjoy the times we had and the things we did, but I can’t just leave.  We can’t run away together.  It simply can’t work that way.”
My loving gaze had turned into a glare.  “Is that all I was to you—a time and a thing you did?”
“No!”  I yelled. “I’m not going to be put into some jewelry box of a home somewhere so you can come and open it up to play with me when you want.”
Aaron’s face crinkled with hurt at first, but then like the wave that crashed into me before, I could feel his disgust towards me.
“I’m trying to help you, Beannca, but if you don’t want that help, I can’t vouch for your safety.”
In the matter of seconds, I felt I had opened a small crack that had always existed in Aaron.  He liked me, yes, but he only liked me for one reason.
“Leave me,” I said.  I could feel his true emotions cast over me like an ocean spray. 
“You’re being stupid about this.”  He warned.  “The guardianship is after you, and they don’t take lightly to a murder of one of their members.”
I held my eyes on him.  “I said go,” I said in a calm voice.
He straightened, and then slipped the ring on his finger.  “You sirens are just like they say in the text books.  You are difficult and unable to reason with everything.”
I let a smirk escape my lips.  “No, Aaron Gorick, you just assume something that you read was true.  You never got to know me for who I am.”
He pursed his lips together, and stormed towards the door.  It was as simple as that.  The only man I had ever been with, and thought loved me back, was gone.  I was nothing more than a play thing to him.  I should be crying my eyes out, but I wasn’t.  Suddenly, I felt a new purpose in my life.  I wanted to be a siren, but I still didn’t know what that was.
“Beannca, are you alright dear?”  Jack asked timidly from the edge of the hallway.
I unclenched my fists as a crackling sound, like someone stepping on thin ice, erupted behind me.  I turned to see the large picture window fractured with tiny cracks.  I looked up at it in awe, and then turned to Jack.

“Well, my dear, it seems you’ve found your siren magic.” 

Summer Reading Special!

For your summer reading enjoyment, you can download The Librarian's Daughter The Story of Sage Greene will only be $0.99!  It is available right now at Smashwords for this special price and soon it will be available on Barnes & Noble, kobo, and other sites.  Happy summer reading!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Midweek Mayhem Bookmarks

Here are a couple of bookmarks for my current project I'm working on.  Gotta love bookmarks!

Sunday Sampler Sirens Chapter Four excerpt

Things are moving along for my novel Sirens-still hope to have it done by the end of the month or first part of July.  In the meantime, here's an excerpt of chapter four.  Enjoy!

Chapter Four
I stood outside the Fisher Building and looked up at it.  People passed by unaware that I would soon be rubbing elbows with the enchanted community elite.  Humans had so many magical things right under their feet or existing with them, and never knew it.
It was a quarter to nine when I entered the building and arrived on the thirteenth floor.  It didn’t take a genius to find the large portal just off the elevator.  The only strange thing—there were no other people.  There were also no attendants or anyone greeting people.  I wondered if I heard the two messengers right.
“Ah, right on time,” said a lanky looking man dressed in a bright blue, silk suit that sparkled in the light like newly fallen snow.  His eyes twinkled at me, and his hair went in every direction in short tuffs.  “Welcome.”
“You’re the Green Man?”  I asked. 
“At your service, Hannah.”
“I did get the right night, didn’t I?” I asked as I looked around the barren room.
“Yes, you did, and we will be leaving shortly.  Please,” he said motioning down the hallway with his opened hand.
Maybe everyone was meeting in his apartment for a pre-party of mingling before we would go to Shangri-La.  At least I hoped that’s how it would be. 
As we walked down the hallway, I heard no music or voices.  Everything was quiet.  Surely there would be commotion of the party that was supposed to be taking place.  Something was askew, and I felt it ping through me. What if this was an ambush set up by the guardianship, and they were using the Green Man to lure me here. That was possible, and he could have enough power to neutralize my persuasion abilities.  Why did he come and greet me in person?  Why not have one of his hired help to do that?
We stood outside his door as he pulled his keys from his pocket.  This didn’t feel right to me.  No other guests, no music, no laughter…
“What are you doing?  Trying to trick me?”  I grabbed his wrist.
He looked back at me shocked at first, then smiled.  “Cautious,” he said.  “I should’ve known that you would’ve been a little untrusting of me.  But I can assure you that my invitation is legit, and we will be going to Shangri-La.  Only there will be two other guests to socialize with.  They are sirens, and I’ll be frank with you,” he bent down to pick up the keys he’d dropped.  “I’ve a business opportunity for all three of you that will greatly interest you.”
We studied each other for a moment.  I then took a step away from him.
“Please listen, Hannah,” he said folding his arms across his chest.  “If I was going to rat you out to the guardians, I would have told them where your apartment was or have you captured as you got off the elevator.  I’m selective as to who I let the guardians know about.  Usually they are an enemy that I wish to get rid of, and why not have them do the leg work and messy job of containing them?”  He smiled.  “Like I said, I’ve got a proposition for you, and two other sirens.  And it’s one that isn’t offered to many.”
He opened the door, and it swung open.  I peeked in as soft music filtered through the sweet smelling air that brushed past me.  It was inviting, and suddenly, I found myself inside with the door closed behind me. 
“You see, no guardians,” he said waving his arm through the air with a smile.  “Please Hannah join us.”
Two other girls—sirens—gazed at me.  One had shoulder length blonde hair, blue eyes, and cleavage that looked like it could explode out of her red dress at any time.  She slightly smiled as she pressed her wine glass to her rosy lips.  The other girl had dark hair and doe eyes that looked at me curiously.  She sat on the chair with perfect posture as if someone had shoved a board down the back of her dress preventing her from ever slouching.  They were both pretty, but the blonde one was the typical stereotype for a bombshell of a siren.  The other girl had an innocence to her that made her look like she should be in a cookie commercial. 
“Hannah, this is Beannca,” he said motioning towards the blonde one.  “And this is Sophie.”
I nodded my head as Sophie got up with a smile on her face.
“Hannah, it’s a pleasure to meet you,” Sophie extended her hand and I gently shook it.
A sudden wave pushed through me upon her touch.  I seldom socialized with other sirens, and when I did, it was like meeting with any other person.  This was different.  It was like I had accidently touched bare electrical wires, and had received a momentary shock.  Her smile dropped from her face as she jerked her hand back.  Our eyes met.  She felt something too.
“So when do we get to go to Shangri-La, Jack?”  Beannca asked as she sat her glass down on the table.
“Soon, but first I have to ask all of you something.”  The Green Man motioned for me to sit on the couch next to Beannca.
“First of all, I’d like to thank all of you for agreeing to come to my party.”
“Is this it?”  I asked pointing between us three sirens.
He smiled.  “Yes, it isn’t about the quantity of guests, but the quality of them. And I wanted to have an intimate party this year.”  He let his gaze wander between us, and then rested his eyes on me.  “You and most of the enchanted community know me as the Green Man, which is my title, but I want you to call me by my real name—Jack.”
Beannca let out a giggle.  She must have started her drinking early, or couldn’t hold her liquor.  Sophie gently nudged me on the shoulder and smiled down at me.  She had sat next to me on the couch, and handed me a glass of wine.  I hated wine, but didn’t want to be rude, so I took it with a thank you, and sampled a tiny sip.  It was surprisingly sweet, and before I knew it, I had drunk the whole glass as Jack gave us a short version of siren history.
Most everything he said, I knew.  Sirens had come from Atlantis, and were once used as moderators during negotiations, meetings, speeches or anything involving opposing sides or races that were at war.  Sirens used their persuasion to calm and open the minds of those involved, never control their thoughts or sway their decisions.  That was a long time ago, and very much forgotten.
At one time sirens held powerful positions and held a great responsibility, but that all changed when one siren used their ability for a price.  Two Mer tribes were at war, and when offered a big enough bribe, anyone would give in.  And after that misuse of power, high-ranking sirens were killed, others escaped and went into hiding, and others, mostly children, sought refuge with the librarianship.
“Do you have any memories of the evacuation, Hannah?”  Jack’s voice broke through my drifting mind.
I sat up as Beannca and Sophie looked intently at me.  I looked down at my wine glass that had been filled up again.  How much have I had to drink?
“If it bothers you too much, you don’t have to tell us.”  Sophie gently brushed her hand across mine.  “We were too young,” she said pointing between her and Beannca, “and our memories had been erased to recall anything at all.”
“No, that’s alright.  I don’t mind.”  I drew in a deep breath.  I’ve never told this to anyone before.  “I don’t remember much, just bits and pieces, but I remember my father the most.  He had red hair like mine, and liked to go swimming.  I was afraid of the water and he showed me to not be scared of it.  He wasn’t frightened of anything, and I never saw fear in his eyes, ever.”  I felt I was just telling a story, and it wasn’t my past, just a story that I knew.  “One day my father took me to the portal house.  There were lots of sirens, and people that I didn’t know at the time were librarians.  They took me along with several other children through the portal.  I left my father with tears as he told me to be good and I’d see him soon.  I never did see him again.”  Some memories should never be dug up.  “That’s it, that’s all I remember.”

Sophie handed me a tissue from her rhinestone covered purse.  I didn’t even realize I was crying.