I felt so happy to be at my "parents" home. Herman and Lily hugged me, ushering in Amar. Lily made my favorite dinner with lots of nuts and berries. Herman broke out a bottle of old wine. I smiled ,as they professionally grilled Amar, they both knew the Fae had done so but they needed to for themselves. Amar answered their questions patiently with no defensiveness.
He squeezed her hand. Herman thoroughly enjoyed hearing how Amar had gone to 5 different villages ,teaching them how to be sustainable leaving a well-qualified assistant at each who would take over after he left. He talked of the joy, almost reverence that the people found in their self-sufficiency.
"I know Belinda taught communication but it is hard for me to believe it could be more bonding than what I have been working on" he said, as he finished.
I rose early the next morning, dawn and dusk being the times of day that were still my favorites. I watched the sun rise as I saw the park waking up. I'd forgotten how beautiful my home with Lily and Herman was. They lived on a lovely park with a lake. So much wildlife always helped me feel more at home. I saw my favorite tree Aurora waving her lovely branches. I laughed at the squirrels, it was so serene and safe. I never would understand how and why humans didn't see there was friendship and love and wisdom all around. Some did, of course.tears trailed my face as longing for my fae home overcame me.
I stared at the lake which was covered in a grey mist as it dissipated with the warmth of the sun. On the far side stood 25 white heron, together, in sync, they flew up and swooped down, skimming the lake as if they were gracefully performing a synchronized ballet. I was mesmerized by the effortlessness of their movement. When I came out of my trance, the tears on my face had dried.
My parents took Amar to some of their favorite places. I explained to them that both their experiments were shaping up to be huge successes. She and Amar excitedly told them what had just been revealed to them at their Paris dinner.
The next phase of their assignments was for each of them to travel separately to different parts of the world to teach others their methods.
"Lily and I would like to be involved" Herman announced. I had not realized that Lily and Herman had been so lonely and had felt without purpose since I had left for college. These past few years had been hard. "I could teach childcare" said Lily, "it would add another component to your programs." Belinda and Amar looked at each other and smiled. This was exactly what the High King had foreseen.
Thus the next phase began. Herman and Lily brought trusted friends into their home and organized classes. It was a time of excitement and joy.
Amar and I worked with Lily and Herman sharing our knowledge and methods which had led to our desired results. We both could tell that our enthusiasm was contagious, the smell of victory was in the air.
One afternoon as I was walking by the stream I saw a shadow. A sense of foreboding overcame me as I felt a cool sensation run up my spine. Ahead of me was an old woman, bent and haggard looking. She gazed up at me and I saw startling sadness in brilliant green eyes.
"Gammy!" I rushed to hug her. She felt frail in my arms. "What has happened?" With tears streaming down her wrinkled face she said "It's bad little one, it's bad. There is a rumor that earth has been invaded by aliens and everyone needs to take a blood test to prove they are human. Those who aren't will be taken to an island in the Pacific so they can't hurt anyone. Who knows what will really become of them… of us?"
I held her close. "Be smart my girl, you must use what you have learned. How can we outwit the humans?" I heard my Father's voice in my head.
I was nonplussed. "Gammy, we will have to work harder and faster. I know you are terrified, but this one is easy. We will get blood from all the humans we can trust and hide it, the spell of distraction is easy and everyone can use it when their blood is taken."
Gammy looked at her, "Your father was right to choose you," recovering surprisingly quickly. "Got a doughnut?" I laughed. Same old Gammy, but sighed deeply, knowing what Gammy had just told her meant the opposition was getting stronger. Gammy was so relieved she almost kissed her. Then she sniffed and gruffly said she needed to tell Mr. Bleinkins, her Romeo, the fat, ugly Gnome whom she adored.
My phone rang and I motioned to Gammy to wait. Gammy's heart quickened as she listened to my side of the conversation. Who was she talking to? Who had gotten hurt? Amar? Herman? Mr. Bleinkins?
"What? How? Is he alright? Is he safe? Just shaken? He was shoved? He stopped them with the spell of freezing forgetfulness and then escaped? Thank you, she'll be there directly."
"Gammy, sit down." I looked at the old woman in her green eyes and said "Mr. Bleinkins is ok but because of his appearance a group of people started calling him an Alien. They started to shove him around but he froze them temporarily, they won't even remember they did it."
Gammy looked shaken for a moment, then strangely calm. "We will do this, don't worry little one, we've got this." What, I thought. She was comforting me? Gammy stood up. "I must leave you now. Do not worry. I know just what to do." I called after her but she was gone.
I returned to the house. Amar and I went to our favorite spot overlooking the ocean. I could watch the tide pools endlessly. He held me closely as I told him what Gammy had just said and what had happened to Mr. Bleinkins.
Amar listened intently. To lighten the moment, he teased her that his approach to teaching sustainability and planting crops was going to get faster results than her approach to consciousness raising.
I rose to the bait, laughing and making their own arguments for which approach was best. As the two looked at the horizon of an uncertain future Amar nudged her and pointed. Off in the distance, they saw an elderly couple, she with cropped grey hair and he, all dressed in green. They held hands as they walked down the beach.
Belinda gaped as the pair transformed their appearance into young lovers. Over the sound of tumultuous waves, came a living message: "We have love, we will use love as our nourishment and strength, it is a gift given by the most blessed, to be savored. Now we can do what needs to be done."
I wept at the dignity of those two beings who gave courage new meaning. Later I had found out that Mr. Bleinkins would never be alone on the streets. Somehow he was always surrounded by several of his former students. He was cherished and for now, safe. So it was true what I'd been taught, thought Belinda. Love is powerful, love is the gift of the light. It goes deeper than fear.
Re-united with Zooey, who after weeks of punishing me for being gone now purred incessantly on my lap, I found myself deep in thought about the power of Love that we had just witnessed. Amar's face swam before me and the scent of sandalwood clung in my memory as well.
Once I had been assured by my mentors it was safe, I had told Amar of my lineage. Now they were free to talk about everything. He would tease me that I would always be young and he would look like an old man someday. My eyes misted because what he didn't know was although faeries may be playful and loving with many, if we happen to fall in love, it is for a lifetime, as is with the swans. I was distracted from my thoughts when I noticed that Zooeys purring had ceased. Someone had entered the room
A creeping numbness came over her as she looked up and saw a strange man standing in the doorway. "I hope I am not intruding. I knocked and the door opened. You appeared lost in thought."
I felt my heart in my throat. What I saw before me was a finely chiseled face surrounded by wild grey hair and eyes that seem to hold the light of a carefully controlled fanatic.
I couldn't speak, I was trying to catch and regain control over my own breath. It was the Priest who had taken her fae parents away. She had seen his sneer when he scooped up the cage. how can I do this, as her hand touched her Mothers lock of hair?
With great effort and a studied evenness, I slowly rose and spoke "I didn't hear you come in. How can I help you?" Are you looking for someone?" Silently I called all the forces for help, the time was here. He smiled brilliantly "Aren't you the Belinda who is teaching so many to know themselves and raise their consciousness? "Perhaps " I smiled, " but what can I help you with?" "I am offering my services to help you," he said," "I am a businessman and believe have resources to make your work available to others much more quickly than you can imagine."
I continued to hide my discomfort and terror. "That is wonderful Mr. - I'm sorry I didn't get your name.
"John Bowan," the man said extending his hand in friendship. "Well John Bowan," I replied, "I am fascinated by your interest, please tell me more."
The man softened and began to tell her how influential he was and how impressed by her reputation he was, he thought perhaps he could help her. He proposed the two of them could do business together.
This caught me off guard. Oh how do I handle this? "Sir I am part of a graduate study program and wouldn't be able to do this independently".
"Are you saying your Professor couldn't be persuaded to receive a grant for his program? Perhaps I could meet him and the three of us could discuss it?"
"How generous of you" I stated. " However, I am leaving tomorrow for several weeks, maybe we could meet when I get back?'
"Of course." John Bowan said smoothly, "You seem a bit agitated, is everything alright?"
"Everything is fine. It's just that I have an appointment I will be late for if I don't get going soon. I'm sorry if I appeared to be rude."
"I can't imagine you being rude Miss Belinda, I look forward to our next meeting." And then he was gone.
My heart beating, my hands sweating, my tears spilled over until I was sobbing. Then my rage caught hold. I threw pillows and cleaned the kitchen with a fury. When Amar walked in I was sitting on the floor, holding my stone and lock of hair, the small remaining vestiges of my beloved parents. Intuitively he backed out, made a quiet phone call, then some tea.
When the knock came he let Delilah in. She opened her arms wide and said: "Sugar, come here." I started sobbing again. "Get it out, my dear, you've been very brave." After a few minutes my sobs began to subside.
When I finally looked at Delilah I saw that she was smiling. I trusted Delilah but found it odd that she would be smiling at such a dangerous time as this. So I asked "What is it Delilah? What's going on? How on earth can you be smiling?"
Almost giddy, Delilah replied."I have some exciting news for you but you must be fully present before we talk about it. Ready?" I nodded in anticipation. "My sweet and talented fae - you are going to be an actress!" Delilah announced with great enthusiasm. She signaled to Amar to sit next to me and began to explain.
Hours later, Belinda looked at Delilah "Call in The Council, let's figure this out." A kitten jumped onto the windowsill, green eyes flashing. I let a great sigh of relief. "Oh Gammy, I was afraid you wouldn't be back, that Mr. Ble…" "Nonsense" Gammy interrupted. "Mr. Bleinkins is a warrior, he is more than capable of handling himself, it was just a shock. Now let's get on with the plans."
There was a hard knock at the door. As she opened the door, a tiny creature no bigger than a gecko scurried into the room, leaped onto the serving platter that held the silver teapot and began sipping from her teacup. I was startled and was about to swat the creature away when I realized it was my old protector and friend Dakeh.
Gammy, Dakeh, Delilah, Amar and she sat in a circle on the beautiful antique rug that covered her room. I put the stone, my baby ring and the lock of hair in the middle of the circle. With Amar looking on, we chanted ancient words of grace and healing. The chants rose and the room was illuminated with the beauty that comes from the soul. Amar sat in wonder with his eyes closed as eventually, our four voices grew in volume until he could swear there were many many others in the room.
Amar opened his eyes and looked around. There were only the four of them chanting. It began to dawn on him that the music chanted by Blienkins, Gammy, Dakeh, and Delilah had been joined by bands that were from other realms. They were signaling that they, the angels and elementals, were in unison and would join in the battle to defeat the Dark Ones. They would fight with determination and weapons that humans forget to use.
They sat for a long time filling the universe with grace, as images of the woodlands and memories of the streams, rivers; beauty started to permeate the room like an exotic perfume. The music and aromas stretched their memories, forming a tapestry of images that would surround each one of them and those they touch. As the music died down and they were filled with spirit and strength, each knew what he or she had to do; each had his or her mission. They were united.
Amar was overwhelmed with what he had been privy to. "I am here and I want to help but I don't have the kind of power you do."
"But of course you do Amar" I assured him. "In fact, your power is greater than mine for you have blind trust. I so grateful you are with me, I don't know if I could do this without you." A tingling sensation went up his spine. "Of course you could" he reassured her, aware of but not understanding his reaction.