|“Mom, what are we going to do today?” I asked as I brushed my long blonde hair. As usual, I left a lock of hair swinging in front of my face, the way I liked it. I put on shorts and a T-shirt and flip-flops.
“Hon, I need you to come down here. I got to talk to you about something.” Mom sounded urgent, like when she really needs me to come down. I put down my brush and ran out of the bathroom and into my brother’s chest.
“Move it, Helen Keller,” he snarled. “I’m late for my club meeting.”
“You mean the club where you sit around and talk about comics for five hours? That club? And Helen Keller was blind,” I smartly replied.
My 17-year-old brother that went to a gym punched me in the stomach.
“Oooow! Mommy! Tristan hit me!”
“Tristan, quit picking on your sister!”
“Yes, Mother.” Tristan shot me his you’re-dead-meat look before stalking to the bathroom to tidy up for his girlfriend.
I headed downstairs and grabbed myself an apple from the fruit basket, washing it in the sink before sinking my teeth into the crisp white flesh hidden under the ruby red skin. “So whaddya wanna talk to me about?” I mumbled through my food.
“I want to take you to the park your dad and I first met. He’s coming with us.” My mom said this like it was hard for her to say it.
“What’s the big deal about the park?”
She glared at me. “One, it was where your dad and I met. Two, it was where you played as a child. Three, go pack your suitcase with all your clothes and a couple backpacks with things you want to take. No electronics.”
“What? Why am I packing a suitcase? What’s going on?”
Mom sighed and looked me square in the eye. “Your last name isn’t Rentinash like you think. Neither is mine or your father’s or your brother’s. It’s DawnRiver. And your real name is not Sarah as you think. It’s Destiny. You are Destiny DawnRiver, and you are going to Ravenwood School of Magical Arts.”
“WHAT?” I nearly choked on my apple.
“The Spiral Chamber to get to Wizard City is in the park, and we are going so you can start your classes on time, and—“
BOOM!! A shockwave that came from our kitchen rippled through the neighborhood. I screamed and dove behind the couch in the living room.
And evil looking face sneered out from the cloud of deep blue dust. It was a long, thin white face that had the stupid goatee that old Egyptian pharaohs had. His black hair was tied back too. His eyes flashed red, showing his black eyeball with a white ring as an iris and a white dot as a pupil often. He wore black robes and carried a black-jeweled staff.
“Oh, Professor Mailistare! It is I, Keira DawnRiver!” My mother bowed to this strange man. I jumped up and pushed her away. “Back off, Mom. The guy’s bad news.”
“I see your evil sense is developing, girl,” Malistare cackled. “Too little, too late! Say bye bye to your mum… forever!”
“Like I’d do that,” I retorted.
“Mom, I’m leaving for my— WHO THE **** IS THAT!?” Tristan’s voice came clear up the stairs.
“Stay there, Tristan! And watch your language!” Mom shouted.
“Tristan? You mean Forest DawnRiver? What a joke,” Malistare laughed.
A sudden puff of sparkling smoke startled all of us. An old man with a white beard, spectacles and a cone hat and robe decorated with star and moon designs stepped out.
“Ambrose,” snarled Malistare.
“Headmaster Ambrose!” My mother cried out.
“I can sense evil two thousand miles away- which is the exact distance between my home and yours.”
The old man seemed to know my mother. “Destiny, get to the park and go through the woods until you see two trees with faces! Tell them your name and they will let you pass!” Ambrose yelled. With a wave of his golden staff, he shot a bolt of lightning at Malistare.
“Urrrrngraaaaaagghh!” Malistare lunged back with a bold of Black Magic. Then he turned and sneered. “That child is not going anywhere.”
The floor opened up beneath me. I screamed as I plunged into the thick darkness, and the floor closed, swallowing me up as I heard the agonizing scream of my mother.
Suddenly I heard, “Des, are you okay?”