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CHAPTER 35: THE UNKNOWING ENEMY


    The unknowing man who caused the unbalance steps out of his helicopter in Boston. This man has
the air of an archaeologist. His pants and shirt are slightly muddy at the edges. The pilot of the helicopter
gets out on the other side, and carries a small wood crate with him. He follows the muddy man into the elevator.

    "John, go to my room and grab a change of clothes. I'll be down in the lab if anyone calls."

    "Right Prof. Arek."

    He unpacked the Control-Stone and set it length-wise on the table in front of him. Dragging a chair from his
desk over to the table, he sat down and began inspecting the stone. He ran his fingers over the edges, turned it
over and did the same to the other side. He felt a depression and pressed in with his fingers. The stone-like
appearance faded away, and its true form became apparent.

    "John, call Eo. Tell him to get in here now! I've got a new development on the origins of Stonehenge."

    "Eo is coming in with your things."

    "Arek, what've you got?"

    "Eo, the most amazing tablet. It looked like stone, then it turned into this."

    He showed Eo the tablet. Arek picked up the tablet and headed toward the meeting room.

    "I need to know all about this tablet Eo. Here are pictures of it, and I'll need the information tomorrow for
my meeting in Salisbury."

    "Why Salisbury? Why not somewhere closer to civilization, like London?"

    "Eo, because it's the closest town to Stonehenge. London is way too crowded during May Week. I'm also
going to discover what this tablet was used for, and what it does."

    "I'll get what I can. John says your ride will leave tomorrow at one. I'll have what info I can find by this evening."


MEANWHILE IN ENGLAND:

    Micah and Xavius are lodged in a small inn near the town of Salisbury. The afternoon is gray and overcast; rain
threatens to dampen the landscape. Micah speaks to the innkeeper and wants to know when the man will return.
Micah senses that the explorer would return, it was his nature. Micah finds a coffee pot and several mugs on a
nearby counter. He removes a mug from the stack, and pours the coffee slowly into it. He walks carefully over to
an armchair facing the entryway and sits down. Drinking his black coffee, time wavers and jumps. He watches on
as the innkeeper walks across the floor to him, tell him of the man's arrival, fade out of existence and appear again
at the other side of the room to perform the same act again. Micah examines the scenario carefully for several
minutes. After finishing his coffee, he leaves the empty cup behind and rushes up to his room.

    "Xavius, did you notice the time ripple?"

    "You mean the man in the hall who keeps tripping over the carpet?"

    "Well... let's just find that stone. Things are getting strange."

    "That time ripple is strange enough, I hate to see what other things are happening."

    Unbeknownst to both Micah and Xavius, Arek has checked into the room right next to theirs. Meanwhile at
Stonehenge, the Tardais flickers in and out of reality. The barrier between the two worlds crack, and reality begins
to distort. Trees appear and fade. Rivers move locations or disappear.

    "Micah, the man you were looking for is next door."

    "Thanks innkeeper."

    "Well Xavius?"

    "Micah, lets get that stone and go home."

    The two leave their room and knock on the man's door. He answers the door questioning who they are.

    "Who are you?"

    "We represent the owners of the Control-Stone that is in your current possession. If you wish your planet to
remain as it is, you will return the stone to us immediately."

    "Are you aliens?"

    "Yes."

    "I... I... The stone is dissolving."

    "We shall bother you no further."

    With the stone gone, Micah and Xavius return to Stonehenge. Upon arrival, they notice the Tardais standing
fully erect on the Center-Stone.

    "Micah, say the spell."

    An image of Ted appears, and joins with Micah's image. The mouth of the combined image opens and a deep
echo of a spell floats forth. Ted's image fades away, and Micah slumps to the ground. Xavius drags Micah into the
Tardais and closes the door. Inside, Xavius turns on the viewer and looks aghast. Tedland floats in the sky above
Earth like a moon. Micah wakes up, and stares at the viewer for a moment before uttering, "Well... I guess we've
screwed up this mission." Tedland shimmers for a moment, and disappears. During this same moment, the Tardais
flickers and reappears at the Walls of Spartaeen.

    "Micah maybe we didn't goof the mission. We're here, and Tedland is where it should be. All is right in the world."

(     Micah... Hurry...)

    "Not quite."

    "Why?"

    "I had another message from Ted. He sounded urgent..."

    "Tedland..."

    Xavius configures the Tardais coordinates to immediately depart for Tedland. Working at the controls for a moment
without success, he stares back up at the viewer in surprise.

    "Well Xavius, are we going to Tedland or not?"

    "We're already there."

    "Oh... What I must do next, I alone must do."

    "I guess its goodbye then."

    "Not goodbye, I'll see you later. Maybe in another time."

(    A Black Hole... Eating time...)

    Ted had saved Micah's life many times before, and now it was his turn to save Ted's. After landing, Micah journeyed
onward to battle the unknown. There was only one way to save them all, and Micah had to risk capturing the black hole
within the IRIS before it could capture him. The Tardais plunges into the depths of the black hole and vanishes. Within
the Tardais, Micah lunges toward the IRIS controls as time slows down. Micah presses the button, and for a brief
moment time stops. The black hole slowly turns on end and collapses in on itself. Somewhere in another time, the
Tardais reappears and zooms toward Earth.

(    Thank you Micah...)

(    Goodbye Ted...)



CHAPTER 36: MAGIC FROM EARTH

    I decided that since I was near Earth, a visit with my friend, Professor Bellos Hampson was in order. He was the only
other person who could play the spoons like I could. I had taught myself when I had been aboard the Zychron for ten years.
This was a seriously needed vacation. Hampson was now headmaster of a magic school on Earth called Habdens. I had
come at the right time unknowingly. He needed a teacher for the Defense Against Dark Magic class. I happened to be an
expert in this field, seeing that I had battled an evil persona of myself several times.

    "Micah I need someone to take this job, and you're the only one who has experience in this field."

    "I'll take it on one condition."

    "Name it"

    "Boarding and meals?"

    "Sure. You'll also be house leader in charge of Jhans. The Mists, Hafjavens, Darmaks, and the Andronomes are the
other houses. Here are your rosters, the merit scales, and the location of your room. Classrooms you'll teach in are
highlighted on the map with their corresponding times. Class begins first thing tomorrow, so I'll let you get acquainted
with the layout. Dinner's at six, and we'll be initiating new students. Your box has already been taken to your room."

    He left me to wander and explore the halls that I'd be spending many years in. I found my room and entered in.
I seemed to have a feeling that I was in TedCastle again. I found a couch and sat for a while. After a short while I
dozed off, and was awoken by a boy named Doc Danson shouting for me.

    "Professor Jhan, dinner!"



CHAPTER 37: NEW STUDENTS DINNER

    The great hall was festooned with the brightly colored house banners. The torches were lit and the celebration
began. Hampson entered the hall, and stood silently for several moments before beginning his speech.

    "Welcome to Habdens. Esvads is still the top ranking school, but we're the second best out of seven. Welcome
first years. Your first year will probably be a bit scary, but don't let that get you down. We also have a new House
Head for the Jhans. He is a Jhan himself, Professor Micah Jhan. He has come to us all the way from Tedland, and
we welcome him warmly with open arms. Let us all stay safe in this coming year, and would all first years step
forward. Sylvester Greenleaf, Jhans. Mandy Mintrassi, Mists. David Morgan, Darmaks. Jonas Martin, Darmaks.
James Edwards, Hafjaven. Marge Evans, Andronomes. Emit Emos, Jhans. May we all enjoy the first meal of the
new year."

    Dinner went smoothly and after we left the great hall, I had a few questions to ask Hampson about the school.
We walked slowly to my room as the conversation continued.

    "Hampson, did Ted help construct this school?"

    "Yes and no. He left equipment behind with a group of survivors he had picked up from another planet. Legend
has it, Ted Jhan came from a far distant galaxy to aid survivors from a war-ridden planet. There were thirty-three
survivors. Ted Jhan kept one survivor with him, and named him after the ship that the survivors were found in.
No one has seen either of them since. Four of the house names are from the original builders, the other was in
tribute to Ted Jhan."

    "Well that's amazing."

    "I'll introduce you to the staff tomorrow over lunch."

    "Sounds like a plan, good night."

    "Can I ask a somewhat odd question?"

    "Yes?"

    "What's in that large ragged box of yours?"

    "You wouldn't believe me."

    "Oh... Sleep well then."

    My room turned out to be very much like home. Too much like home in fact... centuries old memories. A memory
of first seeing the castle. The distant memory of learning magic, and the late night hours of practice. The original use
of the secret room in the library. A memory of seeing the room for the first time. Seeing future gravestones of loved
ones. The first time I saw a future echo. The first of many that came after it. The thoughts were swept away by the
entrance of the present.

    "Professor, you have a letter."

    Written in a plain, quickly scribbled text.

To Professor Jhan.

I'm sure you're aware this castle is exactly like your home.
I wish to discuss this with you in person. Meet me in the
secret garden tomorrow night at ten.

Hafjaven Edwards III



CHAPTER 38: FAREWELLS UNITED

    Sleep had been dreamless, and the following morning started early. I went down to my first classroom and
prepared for the day by constructing a quiz for each class. The students promptly filed in at half past eight,
and class began.

    "Welcome. I'm afraid I don't know what you've learned previously, so I'll give a quiz to see what you know.
You will each singularly defeat ten opponents using your current skills. Begin."

    The room grows dark, and the students reappear on a large battlefield. Micah stands on a cliff that rises
slightly above the students below. The battles rage on below, while Micah fights his own battle above.

(    I'll kill both of you. Ted, a being who is only shadow, and you... Micah, the physical entity of both.)

    Suddenly a blue swirling disk forms, and dives toward Micah. He mutters a spell and discharges it from the
glow that has appeared around his hands. The disk comes to a stop, then slowly dissipates. The spell rebounds
and hits Micah with a renewed force. Micah is split in two. One self stays behind in this timeline, while the other
is thrown back toward Tedland. Along the way, he intersects paths with a future abandoned Tardais.



CHAPTER 39: THE LAKE OF DREAMS

    Millions of years have gone by since Micah left Tedland and several years since he left Earth. Bigbunny,
Hampron, and Xavius have gone on to open an herbal remedy shop. Ricky has gone back to being an art
historian for an art gallery in France. The other Micah became headmaster shortly after Hampson died. Earth
has increased and progressed its technology, but all is not well on Tedland. All of Tedland is ravaged by war
and pestilence. The old king died many years before, leaving no heirs. TedCastle remains standing, but as
bones of a long-dead beast. A young boy walks through the main archway, and runs across the worn writing
engraved in the stone floor. He kneels before it, and sits in prayer.

    "Gods of the ancient time hear me. Send a man who can tame this wild land once more. Send a man who can
deliver us from the plague that ravages our land."

    He smashes the tile with a stone, and pushes the button underneath. The castle glows brightly and a
computerized voice booms through the old walls.

    "You have called forth the mighty and all-powerful wizard, Micah."

    The Tardais lands near the ruins of TedCastle. Micah dazedly steps out of the Tardais and walks toward the
lake. He looks out over the lake and sees a burning city in the distance. An ashen faced boy walks toward
Micah and stands beside him.

    "Have you come to save us?"

    "My home... My memories... My life... This is the place I have always come back to. How long has it been
this way?"

    "TedCastle has been in ruin for ten years. Civil war and chaos broke out in the city shortly after the old king
disappeared. The lake is the only pure thing that remains of the city. It remains in perpetual peace."

    "I'm afraid I can't do anything to save the world from the chaos that has overrun it. Magic has no place in war.
Only the power of words can calm the troubled seas. Call a meeting of the clans, get them to calmly negotiate a
truce. They will see the truth in your eyes and they will listen..."

    A beam of light shoots down from the sky enveloping Micah and the Tardais. The boy is thrown clear, and Micah
vanishes along with the Tardais. A deep scorch mark is left behind where Micah, and the Tardais once stood. The
clans were gathered by the boy and a truce was agreed upon. Two years after the first truce, peace was finally
reached. A new king was put into office shortly after.