In The Spirit World - Chapter 8
The Three Swords
Agawe was astonished at what happened next. There appeared on the table three magnificent swords stuck deep into the smooth stone. It formed a triangle. One sword had a blue handle, the other red, and the third was purple.
Sayling explained, “These swords are the queen’s gifts to you. Choose the color that you think is you. Red is courage, action, and vitality. Blue is youth, truth, and loyalty. Purple is mystery, magic, royalty, and wisdom. Remember… blue and red combined makes purple… choosing the wrong color means you are unworthy of the sword... you cannot pull it up.
When they hesitated, Sayling continued, “You are free to refuse this task…”
Gayon took hold of the red sword and Ayong put his hand on the blue sword. Agawe was last to wrap his fingers around the purple handle. They looked at each other and pulled at the same time. They burst into a cheer as they raised the swords above their heads in triumph.
Sayling handed each one a jeweled scabbard hanging from a sword belt. The sheath studded with red rubies was for Gayon, the blue sapphire for Ayong, and purple amethyst for Agawe.
“I am very proud of you … but the Queen will not let you face this battle alone…” Sayling said as Laidan appeared. He quietly sat next to the diwata.
Sayling slightly nodded to Laidan and he started, “The Buso King attacked the Land of Dilikan. The Dilikans are peaceful spirits and it took them by surprise when Buso King sent buso-animals to capture their princess. This princess was born with a power that the Buso King wants to use… but when she refused to cooperate… the monsters took their king and queen.”
“This princess… she is Encanta?” Agawe asked.
When Laidan nodded, Agawe said, “She can control the weather and talk to animals… what power does Buso King want from her?”
“The power to influence the moon…” Laidan replied.
“She can?” Ayong asked, “and Buso King wants her to make the moon turn red sooner…?”
“Longer…” Laidan corrected. “The lunar eclipse will happen in a very short time… the Buso King wants Encanta to make it last longer so he can accomplish his evil plans.”
“She can do that?” Gayon asked.
“No one knows. Not even Encanta herself… she has powers that she does not even know she has and most of them she can’t control. In Dilikan, she is called the “moon spirit” because she was born during the full moon and she looks different. That’s why she’s named Encanta because her parents believed she is enchanted. Perhaps the Buso King believes she is really the moon spirit and she can control the moon…”
“So Encanta has to stay in DiwataLand for her protection,” Agawe concluded.
“But Encanta wants to save her parents. She knows where they are. She can hear their voices in her mind…” Laidan said.
“We can’t let her do that alone!” Ayong exclaimed. “That is like delivering her to the hands of the Buso King!”
“Then we have to save her parents…” Agawe declared.
“I believe that is the best thing to do,” Sayling agreed. “Without help, Encanta will fall into the hands of the Buso King. She may or may not influence the moon but we cannot take that risk. We need to ensure she does not fall into evil hands. We need her on our side… that is why… the queen sent Ayong to save Encanta…”
Ayong turned to Sayling.
In answer to his silent question, Sayling continued, “Encanta was trying to reach for anyone who can help her. The queen let her mind get to you, Ayong, because as I said… the queen has chosen you to be part of this task.”
“You mean I was not in danger after all? The queen was looking after me…?”
Sayling nodded and smiled.
Agawe sighed with relief, “I’m so glad to hear that. I still shudder at the thought of Ayong against three monsters.” He looked at Sayling and Laidan, “So let’s ask Encanta where we can find her parents.”
“I will go with you…” Encanta appeared and settled herself on an empty stool next to Laidan.
“But…” Ayong started to protest.
Sayling interrupted, “You will need all the help you can get. Laidan and Encanta will go with you.”
“We cannot waste any more time,” Laidan said, “Encanta will lead us to her parents…”
“They are being held at the Tagamaling lair on top of BaracatanMountain. The Tagamalings are now in their “god-nature” so Amma and Inna are well. When the moon turns red, they are going to become buso … and my parents are in danger if I can’t save them.”
“Then we have to leave…” Gayon said.
“Manama be with you,” the Diwata blessed them.
To The Mountain Lair
They galloped away on chestnut horses. Agawe loved to watch the horses’ golden manes and golden tails dance as they raced toward their destination. Encanta rode with Laidan. Agawe swore that Laidan’s horse floated on air as he blazed ahead of them.
The imposing BaracatanMountain stood before them and Agawe couldn’t help thinking that the spirit world was just another dimension of the world upground. He remembered the many times he had been to BaracatanMountain up in his own world but he had never reached its summit.
They started their ascent with ease until they were half-way up. They followed a narrow trail plowed into the ground with the mountain wall on one side and ravine on the other. They rode in single file as the trail did not allow them to go through side by side.
The air was getting thinner as they went up. Agawe was more worried about Gayon and Ayong.
Laidan, who must have read his mind, assured him that Gayon and Ayong were amply protected. “The chosen ones are stronger than you think.”
After the lung-bursting climb, they reached the peak of the mountain. In spite of everything, Agawe could not help but admire the beauty in front of him. He stood on an embankment staring at a lake with green water. A small green island rested peacefully in the middle of the lake.
“This is the Tagamaling Lair?” Ayong asked from behind.
“It’s beautiful… the busos are wasting this place by living here,” Gayon shook his head regretfully.
“The Tagamaling are half-gods, Gayon… they loved it here.” Laidan swept his hand, “This is their lair when they are buso…”
The whole scenery changed before their eyes. The lake dried up and dead trees sprouted from the cracked up rocks. On top of a large withered tree was a spooky black wooden house with a long thin staircase anchored to the ground.
“Should we go now that the water is gone?” Gayon asked.
“We cannot all go… no one ever came out of a Tagamaling Lair. We will all get lost inside,” Laidan warned.
“Then I will go alone…” Encanta said as she ran down the embankment.
Agawe ran after Encanta. He caught up with her on top of the stairs. As they stepped into the house, everything changed. The spooky black house became a bright golden bamboo house with thick golden draperies.
Exactly as Ayong described, Agawe thought.
Encanta ran from room to room calling out, “Inna! Amma! Where are you?”
Agawe felt he was in a maze as one room led to another. You could really get lost in here, Agawe told himself. In fact, he already lost Encanta. All he could hear was her frantic voice calling her parents.
Agawe followed her voice with his heart racing as the golden bamboo partitions slowly turned into depressing rocky walls. At last he found Encanta in front of a dozen spirits who sat calmly not on the rocky floor but on air. They did not mind that Encanta was screaming at them. They just squatted on air with folded arms and closed eyes.
“Where are my parents?” Encanta roared.
Agawe was beyond shock as he watched Encanta engulfed by a blinding light and her yellow hair stood on end like the rays of the sun framing her head.
Her round eyes flashed and shot lightning at the now fear-stricken Tagamalings. They fled as Encanta shot bolts at them, sending dust and stones into the air as the firebolts hit the wall which began to crack and fall.
She turned to Agawe as her eyes flashed lightning. Agawe blocked the bolt with his sword and it bounced back to Encanta but the force threw Agawe off, his head hitting the rocky wall. As he fought with unconsciousness, he saw Encanta fall and hit the hard floor.
Read Chapter 9
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