Beyond the beautiful mountains of Zorpus was an incredible village of Gladeria. A village beyond which, the world of magic began. Unknown to the mortal world, we have been living in this beautiful surreal dimension since our ancestors created it. We were taught that the mortal world was like the flowers of the banished valley, that sparkled as diamonds in the moonlight but a touch of it can curse you to live in agony for life. All the magical creatures, the mortal world believed as non-existent, existed in our world; from the good to the bad and the majestic to the petite. We all lived in harmony abiding to the rules set by our 3 wizard mages who lives for eternity protecting this world from the time known to the time beyond.
My name is Claudia and I am a happy young girl from the village of Gladeria. My parents were ‘Nature whisperers’. They possessed the power to talk to nature. We magical beings inherit basic magical powers from our parents and attend magic academies to develop our other abilities. It is easiest to specialize in our inherited abilities but excelling in other magical powers, is not impossible though difficult. Excelling all the magical abilities was quite an impossible task to be attained in our 200 years of average life span. It is only our 3 wizard mages, who could attain that till date
.I lost my parents in an epidemic that broke out when I was 5. Though I miss them from the bottom of my heart, my village people looked after me with all the love a child can imagine. I too helped them with all my might and loved them back with all my heart. Though I loved everyone, Mrs. Gumble held a special place in my heart. She is always my little “Granny’O”. Oh! The flowers in her garden were darlings too. The ‘Golden Chimes’ flowers always sang enchanting chimes for me and the ‘Lover soul’ flower, he is such a charmer! But I was always enthralled to talk to the ‘Oracle’ flower. She always told me about how my life would change when I meet the love of my life. I feel a tingling from inside my heart every time I hear that. I truly wonder how he would be…..The magical academy of Zorelia is the biggest magic academy in our world. Our 3 wizard mages are directly involved in this academy. Lucky me, I got an admission there as well!
After leaving my Gardenia behind, I travelled to the academy in a flying carriage from my village. On a huge cliff residing in the middle of the enchanted sea of pearls, stood this humongous castle structure that had a mystique air to it. As soon as we landed at the entrance gate, little trolls rolled next to our carriage asking for my admission papers. They were this small, round, grey creatures that were so cute that I couldn’t help a chuckle. Clearing my papers I was allowed to enter the premises. Waving bye to Mrs. Gumble who came to see me off, I took my first step to my future. I was very much tensed but at the same time happy. Through with all the formalities, I was directed to the Girl’s Dorm to settle down. I was assigned a room with a balcony facing the beautiful sea.
The next day, it was a fresh morning and I reached my class. Among all the other fellow students I noticed a boy sitting by the window seat gazing at the waves crashing on to the cliff. The morning sun rays illuminated his elegant features and made him look radiant. His emerald green almond eyes sparkled like the dews in the sun rays and his coal black hair falling on his forehead could just enhance his elegance. I could sense a slight sorrow in the depth of his eyes searching for happiness. Like a spell of magic I was drawn to him and before I realized I was sitting next to him.
“Hello, I am Claudia and you are?” I introduced myself with an intention to strike a friendship. With a short gape at me he just resumed back to his gaze outside. A little disappointed and wondering why, I continued, ‘I am sorry to have disturbed you, I just wanted to be your friend.” But this time he did not ignore me. He replied, “I am Ryo, and you wouldn’t want a friend like me.” Taken aback by his words, I continued, “Why so?”
Ryo just gazed at me and said “What you see may not be” and again looked away. Somewhere within those words, I felt the sorrow I saw in his eyes. I was tempted to know more about him. Many came in trying to talk to him but his cold replies fled everyone away except me. I very badly wanted to be his friend; I wanted to be the one he would share his joy and sorrow with. Though I greeted him every day and tried to start a conversation with him, he always ignored me. But one day as I wished him a good morning, he stared at me for a moment and asked, “Why do u want to be my friend?” With a smile I meekly replied, “Because I believe we are destined to be so.” He just gave me a confused look and walked away. But the next day when I greeted him yet another time, he greeted me back taking my name. I was happy and astonished at the same time. From then on Ryo and me slowly became good friends.
Ryo was a wonderful guy with a heart as pure as love. Words weren’t his best companion but he always conveyed his true feelings in the bluntest manner possible. His earnestness in his words had started to sink in me, wavering my heart deep within. Every second I spend with him were memories I cherished in a special chamber in my heart.
One morning, as I stood in my balcony to watch the first ray of the sun touch the sea, I noticed someone walking from the waters to the shore. In the soft morning light, I could easily make out the persona of the person walking out of the waters. “Ryo?” I wondered in confusion. He looked tired as he dragged himself to the shore. “What is Ryo doing in the waters this early in the morning?” I wondered as I dazed at him dragging himself to walk towards the Boy’s Dorm. That day throughout the class, I watched Ryo who looked tired and distracted. After our academic sessions were over, I went up to Ryo to enquire.
“Hi Ryo, what’s up with you, you were all distracted in the class today and besides, you look tired.” In a sudden confusion, he averted his eyes and replied, “I couldn’t sleep well yesterday.” I and Ryo hadn’t become very close friends yet, but I was the only one he interacted with. May be I was just a friend to him but to me he was dear and so I was concerned about him. “You know Ryo, wouldn’t it be obvious that you couldn’t sleep yesterday.” I spoke staring into his deep green eyes. With an astonished look on his face Ryo asked me what I exactly meant. To have grabbed his attention, I decided to confront him. “What were you doing in the sea early in the morning today? You know we are not supposed to go there after the sun set, don’t you? Ryo’s face fell pale. All his colours had drained off. He furrowed his brows instantly, brushing me off in a rude tone. “It none of you business, keep yourself out of my life!” and he ran off towards the Boy’s Dorm. Honestly, I expected him to reply as that to be a boys daring challenge or something of that sort, but Ryo’s reaction was clearly indicating something serious. I wanted to get to the bottom of it. It must be my intuitions working but I sensed that this act had a connection to the ever living sorrow I sense in his eyes.
I decided to take a stroll in the slight stretch of woods, lining the shore. Using my powers as a ‘Nature whisperer’ I spoke to every little flower and trees in the area and was shocked to know that Ryo went to the waters almost every night talking to a mystique lady figure emerging from the waters. They even told me that they saw a mysterious beast lurking in the waters a certain times. I was concerned; worried about Ryo and what disturbed me the most was the mystique lady figure.
That night I decided to spy on him and hid in the woods, lining the shore. After a while I saw Ryo walking by, to the shore. As he approached the rocks, I saw a beautiful lady emerging from the waters, her red wavy free flowing hair sparkled the stars above. Her beautiful eyes were so deep that the entire ocean would fill in them. She was as beautiful as a sea siren. I felt a rage in me rising. Who is she? How does she know Ryo? Why does he go to see her every night? I wanted to know. Without a thought I ran up to him. Sensing someone coming, Ryo turned around to see me. The woman’s gaze though shifted to me, her expression was unchanged and was pleasant as earlier.
Without saying a word I stood there staring at Ryo while he went pale and stunned. The mystique lady broke the silence saying, “She might be your answer Ryo.” I didn’t understand what was going on but all I knew was that I was hurt, bad enough for the tears to run down my eyes. Ryo seemed hesitant; he looked here and there with his gaze down to the ground. Finally, my emotions reached its limit; I couldn’t take it any long.
“Ryo, I know I don’t mean anything to you, but I care. I care about you, allot!’ I was surprised at my own words. I had this sudden urge to protect him from some unknown bad he was undergoing. I couldn’t hold back the tears that gushed out. With teary eyes, I feel on my knees. “I want to protect you Ryo! I don’t know if I can but let me at least try!” I couldn’t take it any longer; I covered my face and let my emotions bleed from my heart until something warm touched me. When I raised my head I saw Ryo kneeling down in front of me, holding my arms. His eyes were teary and he had a pained expression on.
“Claudia, I know I have been cold to you, but trust me, it’s only because I care. Don’t involve with me Claudia. You deserve better”
“NO!” I shouted aloud. I never knew I could sound so too. “I don’t want anyone else. Why don’t you understand! I will do all I can. I swear upon the magic I inherit.” May be it’s the determination I had in my eyes; Ryo suddenly embraced me with all his strength. Sighing in resignation he released me and said, “I will tell you everything” Ryo told me his story, the reason behind the sorrow he posses. Ryo was an adopted child. His parents found him abandoned in the world of mortals. Having no children, they decided to adopt the child. Without anyone knowing they smuggled him to our world of magic. They named him Ryo and loved him dearly. They had the power to control elements of nature like fire, water, air and such. They were called “Rudiments” as they could touch the basic elements of the nature. Suspicion fell on Ryo as a child because he did not inherit the powers of his parents. Soon this news reached our 3 wizard mages who gave Ryo’s parents two options. One is to abandon Ryo back into the world of mortals erasing his memory of our world or Do a sacrifice and let him posses magic like one among us. Our world has an option of inheriting magic through a contract made with a magical creature. It is like a give and take option. Where we give away something dear to us and gain magical powers and boons instead. Abandoning him was intolerable for Ryo’s parents so they opted to make a deal with a sea serpent who agreed to abide. The contract was marked in Ryo’s heart and the deal was that he would turn into a sea serpent on every blue moon night that occurred in a fortnight, when he turned 20.Now, he was 20 and the contract period was meant to start. The beautiful lady from water was none other than Queen Pearleen who ruled the seas and resides in this enchanted sea of pearls. Also to her position, she was one among the 3 wizard mages who ruled upon our world. Ryo meets her every night as he believed there was a way to void his contract.
I froze in my place. It all sounded like a story and my senses were too shocked to accept this as a reality. Ryo continued, “When I met you and saw how much you cared about me, I was pleased. I did notice the affection in your eyes every time you looked at me. I too wanted to love you with all my heart and live a happy life with you. But Claudia, it is impossible. You deserve some one better, someone who can make you happy and not a beast like me.” He closed his eyes and looked away in sorrow. When I saw him look away in pain, I decided no matter what happens we will face it together. Holding his hand I vowed to him, “I can’t promise if I can void this contract but I promise to be by your side my entire life, as your love, as you soul.” Ryo looked at me with eyes filled with tears of affection.
“What if there was something you can do”, Queen Pearleen’s voice interrupted us. “NO!” Ryo roared. “I don’t want her to be involved!” But I ran to Queen Pearleen leaving Ryo’s hands holding mine. “Your highness, If there is anything I can do to help Ryo please tell me. I wouldn’t mind doing anything at all if it promises him his life back.”
“A contract made is for life Claudia, but you can make another contract and alter his.” smiled the queen as she told me so. “I wouldn’t mind at all if it can make him happy” I replied almost instantly. “NO! Claudia please don’t do this!” Ryo demanded. Gazing at him pleadingly, all I said was “…. Please Ryo, please let me do it”. Hesitantly, Ryo withdrew himself in resignation.
Suddenly from the waters came sounds of splashing, when I glanced I saw a beautiful mermaid settling down on a rock nearby. “She is the one you have to make a contract with” spoke Queen Pearleen pointing at the beautiful mermaid. “As you wish, your highness” replied the mermaid bowing her head. “I am aquamarine, a mermaid of the seas. I will grant you the power to turn him back to his human form as and when he turns into a sea serpent with your kiss, if you promise me to offer flowers ever full moon day. But the contract would be written in the iris of your eyes and your iris would turn into aquamarine crystals as a sign of the contract.” It was something I can do with any least effort. And if I did this deal I could save Ryo and at the same time be with him for life as it was only my kiss that could turn him back to his human form. With no other thought, I agreed.
In no time my iris turned into aquamarine crystals and a contract was made. Ryo who was watching everything in silence, broke down in tears. “I am sorry! I am very sorry to have put you through all this.” I went close to him, lifted his chin till our gaze met. Instantly, Ryo’s expression turned into a daze as he looked into my eyes as I spoke to him “I love you Ryo, if we can be together forever that is the best I can wish for.” Ryo smiled back and said “Your eyes, it reflects the entire sea in them. I can see the depth of your love in them. I can feel your soul in them.” We both smiled and embraced each other as the stars shone upon us.