For k'Chaera
Written by:  Dark Phoenix

Third chapter reborn.  Thanks again for continuing to read.

Comments are always welcome.  Email me at:

This be the legal stuff:  I don't know the lives or preferences of any celebrities mentioned, nor do I frankly care.  This is a fictitious story.  All ideas in this story belong to the author and the author alone.  If you aren't old enough to be on this site, leave.  If you are offended by anything of a homosexual {my miserable attempt to be what americans call PC, politically correct} nature, once again please leave.  Once again I know not the personal lives and preferences of any celebrities mentioned, and I frankly don't care for that is their personal business.


** Last Time **

        "Everybody, into the portal NOW!"  Zak hollered at the guys.  They saw the portal and started to run toward it, fighting every step of the way.  They each made it to the portal and jumped through it, seeing that it was the only way out of the fight.  Zak handed Brian to the KaosTwins and they took him through the portal with them.  Zak turned and faced the Horde by himself now.  Pointing the MagiusStaff above the Horde, Zak sang a pure and crystal clear note, one that would have had opera singers in tears, it was so high, clean and pure.  All of the Agents fell to the ground thrashing when they heard the note.  The waters of the Lake churned and a Lady floated up from the depths of the Lake.  The Lady of the Lake looked at the Agents on her beloved land and frowned.  She raised a hand and a large crystal wand appeared in her hand; made of pure diamond and jewels, the wand was very bright and beautiful.  Zak raised his staff in benediction and he himself flew into the portal, exhausted both physically and mentally.

    The Lady of the Lake looked at the Agents sprawled her precious land and in her Lake.  This enraged her and she floated up to the crest of the dome.  She struck the dome with her wand, causing it to crumble and crash to the ground.  As pieces of the Dome struck the Agents, they simply disappeared and the park returned to its normal shining splendor for the new day.  She looked about in satisfaction and returned to the depths of the lake after restoring the ducks, swans, and goldfish back to normal.

    The guys all were tired and exhausted go through the portal.  They all looked around and saw that they were in what appeared to be a sparkling blue tunnel, all racing towards the other end of the tunnel.  They all saw the Light at the end of the tunnel and gladly flew through the tunnel towards it.

***  Now on with the story ***

   The last thing the Brian remembered was leaping up into the beam of energy that seemed to be aimed at the mysterious man.  At that moment, Brian's world became only the energy that was pouring through him, threatening to burn him from the inside out.  He felt the Flame from the man hit him in the back, providing some relief, but the burning never ceased.  Feeling like he was going to die, Brian heard a voice from deep within his soul.


    Brian's world once again erupted in Flame.  This time the flame came from within and didn't hurt at all, it seemed to heal of his pain.  He felt a new power coursing through his blood, and knowledge from long times past in his mind.  Grasping this new power and knowledge, Brian looked at the Beast that stood before him.  Raising a hand and unleashing the fury within him, he incinerated the Beast.  Turning and trying to fly back to the guys, Brian felt his consciousness slip into darkness.  The last thing that Brian felt was somebody holding him and wings of folding around him, easing him lightly into slumber.


    Exhaustion was on all their minds as they flew through the tunnel;  they barely noticed the patterns of light that easily outshone their concert light shows.  Zak had by then relieved the KaosTwins of their burden and was carrying Brian by himself.  He floated to the head of the group and went through the portal at the end and landed gently in the courtyard of his castle, noticing the dawn that greeted him.  Brian stirred in Zak's arms; Zak laid a finger on Brian's forehead, sending a mental command to sleep, and Brian feel silent again.  Everybody else landed on their feet behind them, leaning on each other for support of their weariness.  Zak looked around and called for his servants.

    "We need help, we've got one injured and six exhausted fighters here.  Midnight!"  Zak hollered into the air.  People came running and helped the Boys into the castle, Midnight standing in the foyer directing them where to take everybody.  Zak was telling everybody to leave him with his burden and to go help the others.  Midnight noticed Zak was carrying somebody and floated up and over to him.

    "Who's . . . " Midnight started and feel silent when she recognized Brian Littrell of the Backstreet Boys hanging limply in Zak's arms, "What happened?"

    Zak looked at her trying to figure out the confused expression on her face, but answered dutifully, "I was walking along Lake Eola Park, when I was surrounded by Agents and this one and his friends came to help.  The Twins showed up before them to help me too."

    "You do realize who that is right?" Midnight asked.  Zak shook his head and Midnight sighed exasperatedly, "Boy, you've got Brian of the Backstreet Boys in your arms."

    Zak stood there in shock and Midnight chuckled as his jaw dropped wide open.  Zak looked down at his charge with a new appreciation for his courage.

    Midnight interrupted his thoughts, "Now what happened to him?"

    "We were fighting, and I used LodenCrystal to arm them.  Brian here fought by my side and was doing very well until they sent a beast after us,  Brian leapt up into the EnergyClash between us and got injured in it.  Strange part is that his body shows no damage from the clash at all."

    Midnight nodded and placed a hand on Zak's shoulder.  She and Zak started to whisper gently in an arcane language; a swirl of mist surrounded the two and in an instant they were gone.

    The other boys had been led to separate rooms on the same floor of the castle.  They were each led into the rooms and ushered directly to the bathrooms of the suites.  The boys were all too tired to protest as each was stripped and placed into warm bath.  Hands, belonged to faces that they didn't see, bathed them, gave them soothing massages and lay them into bed, such was the level of exhaustion that they suffered.  One by one the servants left as Midnight came and cast sleep spells on them for them all to sleep deeply.  Midnight ordered the servants to watch each one, keeping them in the beds with simple magicks and to heal any wounds that they suffered from the Agents.  After Midnight was done looking after the boys, she went to her office and placed a very discreet phone call.

    "Thank for calling Jive Records.  How may I direct your call?"

    "Extension 7469, please."

    "Please hold."

    *ring, ring* "Thank you for calling Manager Fei's Office; please leave a message after the tone." *beeep*

    "Midnight calling.  The Backstreet Boys are under my protection.  They are to NOT have any appointments or meetings until I give the authorization for them.  I will call back with more details later."  With that she hung up the phone and proceeded to the main healing chambers that she had left Zak and Brian in.  Brian now lay on the marble bier in the middle of the room.  Zak was arranging candles around Brian, who was breathing lightly under a yellow charm, a single strip of paper with runes and characters in red ink, that lay on his face and the simple gown that he was wearing.  Midnight shut the door and laid a ceremonial blade across the threshold.  Surveying the room, Midnight saw the changing curtain in the corner, outside and away from the octagon that was etched into the floor.  She crossed to Zak's side and watched him finish the preparations.

    < What's wrong with him? >  Midnight sent into his mind.

    < I wish I knew; after the energy clash he's only stirred a bit and then fell back under.  I'm worried that the energy clash opened his Gifts prematurely.  How are the others? >

    < They're sleeping and are taken care of, I called their management and all is settled on that end.  We can Heal and watch them from here safely. >

    Zak nodded and finished with the candles.  He walked behind the changing curtain in the room, and with a flash of SpellFlame changed his attire into more ceremonial robes.  He floated out and then Midnight stepped behind the curtain, using Lightning to change her attire.  She too floated out and took a station opposite Zak on the octagon.

    < What do you plan on here? > Midnight asked.

    < I hope to Heal him and get him back to his group. >  Zak sighed.

    < He's cute isn't he? >  Midnight said after a pause.

    Zak looked at her in shock, not really sure what to do, not realizing that his long suppressed feelings were that obvious.  Midnight smiled and shook her head.

    < That's not it, I'm just concerned about the backlash of being caught in an EnergyClash. >

    < Uh huh . . . Anything you say, I won't tell him. >

    Zak shivered lightly and began the incantation to activate the wards of the room.  His lyric tenor was soon joined by Midnight's smooth alto, both voices rising and falling with the incantation and in harmony with each other.  When they finished, the octagon flared up in light and soon they were both surrounded in a faint luminescence.  Brian still lay on the marble bier, breathing lightly, but both now noticed that he was slightly glowing.  They looked at each other in shock, not really understanding what was going on.  Both shook their heads and picked up the harmonic melodies that they were singing.  Brian started to rise above the dish candles and small beams of light were emitted from each candle weaving a cocoon around him.  They both continued to do their part, each weaving their magick together to Heal Brian.  The cocoon around Brian began to pulse, but Zak and Midnight were too wrapped up in the magick to notice.  Midnight was the first to notice the pulsing, looking up she saw cracks starting to line the cocoon.  Frantically looking for a way to get Zak's attention, she realized that she was too late for the coming onslaught.

    Zak noticed something was wrong, the Balance had suddenly shifted.  He looked down at Brian and saw the cracks in the cocoon starting to spread.  He could hear a roar in the back of his mind and he knew that the Magick had completely destabilized.  He looked across and saw the fear in Midnight's eyes.  Both backed away from the bier, not knowing what was going on.  They heard a scream that threatened to deafen them, only then did they realize that Brian was now floating upright above the marble bier and no longer in his cocoon of Light.  Brian's eyes opened and his blue eyes were now even brighter with the MidnightBlue SpellFlame that burned within them, their expression unreadable.  Midnight and Zak had by them backed up to the edge of the Ward and couldn't go any further.  The scream continued to howl, bringing Zak and Midnight to their knees.  Both looked up at Brian as his expression changed from unreadable to pure and intolerable pain, realizing that the scream came from him.

    Midnight and Zak hurriedly sat down and crossed their legs.  They both began make precise and familiar motions and weavings of magick with their hands.  As they began to glow with their respective powers, SpellFlame for Zak and Lightning for Midnight, they individually brought their hands together and clasped their thumb, ring, and pinkie fingers together leaving their first two fingers upraised, their tips alight with their respective energies.  Midnight pointed above Brian and Zak pointed below him, both tracing circles of energy around Brian.  When they finished with the circles, they brought their hands before them again.  Upon doing so, both began to circle around the bier, the energy from their hands building a sphere around Brian.  They were now working to keep the energy in Balance so that Brian wouldn't come to any harm.  They got everything stabilized again and Brian's scream silenced.  They extended the sphere to include the Wards as well and saw Brian just floating there, the charm now being held in his right hand.  Midnight flicked her wrist and the charm flew straight into her hand, causing Brian to look up at them.  Midnight flew right at him and tapped the pressure point on his shoulder, causing Brian to freeze there and gently float down to the bier.


   Brian stirred and felt that he was being carried; it felt like the mysterious man was carrying him.  He heard some faint words and someone touch his forehead and slumber claimed him again.

    FIRE . . . PAIN . . . POWER . . . were the thoughts that ran through Brian's tired mind.  Opening his eyes, he could see that he was covered under some kind of net.  Not knowing what he was doing, he grasped the power the he felt inside and lashed out at the net.  Seeing that he was cracking, Brian struck again and again, trying to break free.  He couldn't feel his body but he could see that there was something stuck to his forehead that felt like it was inhibiting his movement.  Striking the net until he was free, the pain of using that energy came upon him.  He screamed, but he felt that it was all in his head and that his mouth wasn't moving at all.  Using the same energy he brought himself up to figure out what was going on.

    Looking around he saw the mysterious stranger and some other woman nearby, but nothing else save for a glowing wall that surrounded all of them.  The pain set in again and Brian screamed even louder, or so it felt.  He saw both of them driven to their knees from his scream, but he didn't know how to stop.  He felt a new net being woven around him and was about to strike it with his power, when he felt that it was actually helping him and calming him down.  Once he could think clearly from the pain, it only took a small bit of power to detach the charm, not quite knowing how he knew it was a charm, from his forehead and reach out and grab it with his hand.

    Brian saw the new net expand until it encompassed all three of them.  Noticing the shocked expressions on their faces, he was about to speak, when he felt the charm fly out of his hands and the woman moving impossibly fast at him.  He felt her tap his shoulder and all control of his body ceased.  Brian felt frozen in place, unable to move a muscle, yet his breathing and heartbeat seemed unaffected.  Feeling that he was sinking back to the table he was just laying on, Brian heard the lady saying something to him.


    "Brian, I know this is weird but you need to trust us and we'll be able to help you."  Midnight said gently.  Zak float over to Brian's side and helped Midnight settle Brian into the Lotus Position on the bier.

    "I'll release you if you just sit still okay?"  Zak asked Brian.  The Flame in Brian's eyes died down, and Zak placed the charm on Brian's forehead again before releasing him with a tap on the opposite shoulder.

    "The charm will help you heal and let you rest while in the position that you are in.  One of us will be here to monitor your progress.  Now, please sleep,"  Midnight said gently as Zak tapped another pressure point on Brian's neck, causing Brian to fall instantly asleep.


   Brian's last thought before he feel asleep was:  "Who were these people and how did they know who I am."


    Zak floated around next to Midnight and looked at Brian.

    "He's handsome, isn't he?"  Midnight whispered gently.

    Zak kept silent and floated behind Brian to settle down on the bier.  Zak took to the Lotus Position as well and started to collect his energies together.  He nodded to Midnight over Brian's shoulder, and she turned to face the Ward surrounding them.   She pulled a simple blade from her robe and proceeded to etch a small symbol into the Ward.  She finish and laid her hand against it and teleported from the inside of the Ward to the outside of it.  Using a bit of Lightning, she erased the marks and put her blade away.

    < How long to you think you'll be? >  Midnight sent to Zak.

    < Honestly, I don't know, he's taken a lot of damage, internally and mentally.  I'm probably gonna be a while, check up on the others and get some sleep, I'll be fine. >

    Midnight nodded and stepped back from the Ward.  Zak, by then glowing with his ForestGreen SpellFlame, started to strike different pressure points on Brian's back, leaving trailing bits of SpellFlame with each hit.   After about a dozen or so of these hit, Zak struck Brian's back with the palms of both hands.  Upon contact, they both became enveloped in SpellFlame, Brian in MidnightBlue and Zak in ForestGreen.  Midnight looked at the two in shock, she didn't suspect Brian of having SpellFlame.  She hoped that Zak could cope with the Healing.  Shaking her head and mentally asked for the favour of the spirits, she walked to the door and lifted the blade from threshold and left the room.  Turning as she walked out, Midnight placed the blade across the threshold and closed the stone door.  Upon looking up at the sky, she realized that they had been in there the better part of the day already.  Floating down the hall, she whispered another benediction to the Spirits for their Favour.  She reached what appeared to be a dead end in the hall, and pushed gently.  The entire wall gave way and opened into the courtyard.  Closing the wall behind her, Midnight placed another charm on the wall.  Stepping back, she leveled a LightningBolt at it, charging it to the fullest, locking the wall in place.

    "Mistress!" one of the house servants ran up to her, "All of the new boys are thrashing and trying to get free."

    "Damn!" Midnight swore, "Return to your chores, thank you."


    Nick remembered landing in what appeared to be the courtyard of a castle.  He remembered being pampered like he was a crown prince, being bathed and clothed by servants, and being put into a nice bed that invited sleep.  That's when the nightmare started.

    Nick looked around him and saw the park again, with his swords in hand.  He saw Kevin being over taken by the Hordes and ran at the Horde.  Yelling at the top of his lungs for them to let go of Kevin, he started to fight them, sending body parts flying left and right.  The last thing he remembered was a soothing voice in his head beckoning him to sleep deeply and peacefully, and what looked like a prince walking towards him, but it was clearly a monkey's features on the face.  At that point, blissful sleep over took him.


    AJ remembered being put to bed and falling asleep.  He then woke right back up and looked around seeing the park again.

    "This can't be, I'm in bed asleep.  This has got to be a dream,"  AJ said to himself as he heard a scream cut through the air.

    Taking off at a dead run, AJ felt the familiar presence of the SpikedGauntlets on his hands again.  When he saw that it was a lady being tortured by the Horde, he went into a rage and started to take on the entire Horde by himself.  Just as he was about to be overwhelmed, AJ heard a voice speak to him, promising just sleep and peace, no more nightmares.  AJ nodded and fell asleep again, it what he recognized last second, in the crook of a sleeping tiger.


    Kevin knew that he was asleep and dreaming, but this dream felt so real.  He and Nick were still fighting all of those things at the park, yet he knew that he was in a strange, yet very comfortable bed.  He saw Nick get buried underneath the Horde and screamed, racing to get to Nick.  Holding his LodenBow at the ready, he prepared to take the Horde on by himself, when a voice interrupted his dream and dispelled all the images.

    Kevin felt a soothing wave over take his mind and ease it from the dream.  Smiling as he feel back into deep sleep, he could have sworn that he saw a majestic Unicorn, pure white with a horn, galloping toward him.


    Howie had just fallen asleep when he heard someone or many someones rushing at him.  Turning around he saw that he was in the park again, and about to be overrun by the Horde.  Grasping the MorningStar that was in his hands, Howie jumped and flipped over the Horde and started to run on them towards the back of the group.  Landing on his feet, Howie turned and started to attack the Horde.  After a few minutes of this he was beginning to get overwhelmed by them.  Just as they were about to  crowd out his vision, Howie felt a hand upon his forehead.  A voice filled his mind with peace and tranquilly, leading him toward deeper, dreamless sleep.  Just as Howie felt sleep taking him, he saw a man striding confidently towards him with what appeared to be a bearskin draped over him as an armour of sorts.


    With a 180* turn, she disappeared from the courtyard and appeared in Nick's room.  Nick was still thrashing on the bed from what looked like a bad nightmare.  Laying a hand on his forehead, she pushed with her mind and put him back to sleep.

    "Change these sheets and get him into more cooler clothing."  Midnight told the lad watching the bed.  He nodded and Midnight repeated the same thing for the rest of the Backstreet Boys.  After getting the rest of the boys settled and asleep again, Midnight floated down to the Library to look up something that's been nagging her mind for sometime now.  She just floated up and down the isles, getting familiar with the Library, its smells and sense of ease relaxing her mind.  Reaching the back shelves, Midnight selected a scroll written on reeds.  Taking this scroll and settle down into her favourite chair, Midnight began to peruse the scroll, mumbling to herself.  After several hours of reading, Midnight found the verse that was nagging her:

From the Past shall the Dragon come
In the Future will the Phoenix be reborn
Flame will they share ......

    Midnight cursed at the blasted scroll, since the rest of that paragraph was gibberish.  She remembered that Zak's beloved before had been chosen by Phoenix and Zak was still the Chosen of Dragon.

    "Could Brian be Phoenix's next Chosen?"  Midnight thought to herself, "If that were the case, then it's good that they ran into each other.  It's bad because that means the DarkClans are on the rise again.  I'll have to get the details of their encounter when Zak is through with the lad."


    Kevin lay there in bed and opened his eyes.  Looking around, he saw that he now lay in a grassy meadow somewhere in the middle of nowhere.  The sky was clear and blue with clouds, but there was no visible sun for light to come from.  A feeling of peace and tranquility came over him.

    "This is nice, quiet and secluded.  I wonder where I am though?"  Kevin thought to himself.

    < This is known as TimeHeart, > a gentle voice came into his head, < To scientists, this is the center of the Multiverse.  Some cultures call this Heaven or Nirvana, but it is all the same once you get here. >

    "I'm not dead right?"  Kevin asked the air around him, looking around for the source of the voice.  All he saw was the meadow and a ring of trees just at the edge of his vision.  Looking down he saw the LodenBow at his feet.  Bending over to pick it up, he continued to look around for the source of the voice.

    < No, you are not, Kevin Scott Richardson.  You are far from dead.  Please follow the sound of my voice and all will be explained to you, >  the voice now was coming from just to his left.

    Turning that way, he held the LodenBow and headed toward the sound of the voice.  Strolling over hill and dale, he saw many field creatures scurrying by and heard the songs of birds singing.  Feeling at peace, Kevin began to sing along with the birds.

    < A musician, eh? >  the voice chuckled softly, < Don't worry, that's a good thing here, listening to the birds sing constantly gets boring after a while. >

    Kevin shook his head thinking that this has to be the strangest dream that he's had yet.

    < No, not really, because this isn't exactly a dream.  We've called you here, >  the voice came from just over the next hill.

    Cresting the top of the hill, Kevin was completely shocked by what he saw.  In the meadow below him, was a very large herd of what appeared to be Unicorns.  Standing in the middle of the herd stood an old man, with a tall shepherd's staff.  The Shepherd looked right at Kevin and waved, beckoning Kevin down into the field with him.  Kevin nodded and started the trek down to the Shepherd.


    Bookmarking the scroll, she carried it with her out to the hall, where she promptly teleported herself into her bedchambers for some quiet time of her own.  Settling the scroll down on her desk, Midnight noticed that her desk had a blinking light on it.  Looking over at it, she nodded and touched it, causing it to go out.  Making another turn with a flourish, she disappeared from there and ended up in her office.  Picking up the phone, she dialed her voice mail.

    "Manager Fei here, I got your message and I'm awaiting more details.  Please call my cell at your earliest convenience."

    Midnight erased the message and hung up.  Dialing the familiar number took only seconds.

    "Fei here."

    "Fei, darlin.  How are ye?  It's Midnight."

    "Lady Midnight!  Good to hear from you.  I hope that I didn't sound too rude on my message, I called from work."

    "Oh I understand, professionalism and all.  Anyway, how are the kids?"

    "Oh, they are wonderful.  I even think the youngest and the middle child are Gifted.  The middle child never seems to drop anything and the youngest has that sparkle in his eyes."

    "Well that's good to hear.  I'll look into it for you when I visit next.  How's Liu?  He's doing good I hope?"

    "Oh, he has been such the sweetest.  Thank you for setting us up this time around.  God's the old boar from last century was just that, a real boar.  But that's old news, what about the boys?  Upper management wasn't too thrilled when I delivered your message, but I managed to pacify them for now,"  Fei sighed.

    "I'm sorry about that, but Zak had a run-in with Agents and the boy's must have been nearby.  Remember the Phoenix Prophesy?"  Midnight asked as she unrolled the scroll to her bookmark.

    "Yeah, I'm familiar with it, but you know that the Mirn and Kadeck are my specialties."

    "I know, but the Phoenix has this interesting line:  From the Past shall the Dragon come/In the future shall Phoenix be reborn/Flame will they share, and the rest of that verse is currently unreadable.  Ring a bell?"

    "It sounds familiar, and I think that the Kadeck has a similar phrase.  Give me a second to look.  *rustle of papers*  Here we go I got it:  Wings of Leather/Wings of Flight/Wings of Magick/Wings of Might/Graced by Fire/Graced by Light/Power of the Past/Promise of the Future/Will Flame Unite.  Now if that isn't cryptic, I don't know what is,"  Fei put down her manuscript.

    "Hmm ... that sounds really promising.  Now my question for you now is: what is your impression of the Backstreet Boys?"

    "They are nice and know their music.  As a group, they seem to have been predestined to have met.   You have to see them work together to really grasp what I'm saying.  They always support each other, in any and everything."

    "That's good to hear.  But I really want to know about their prowess at other things.  How are they as a group?"

    "Honestly, I didn't get a chance to scan them yet.  I've only come in contact with them a few times since being here.  Other groups and performers here don't carry that much potential but some of their friends do.  I've got scouts out looking for the signs of the Prophesies, but nothing has come up yet,"  Fei admitted.

    "Well, then this will surprise you.  Brian appears to have SpellFlame and the LodenCrystal seems to favour the rest of the group as well.  They came here with Loden equipment and armour."

    "Loden?  Really?  I would have never guessed.  Where's Zak by the way?"

    "That's part of the reason that it took me so long to call you.  Zak is right now Healing Brian in the ceremony chamber.  Brian apparently survived a direct EnergyClash between an Agent's Beast and Zak.  Zak didn't give me the details of the encounter yet, but I'll get those when he's ready."

    "I knew that the boys were out last night, but I didn't know that Zak was out.  It's the anniversary of the Battle isn't it?  He's normally mopey and such.  How did you convince him to go out?"

    "I got his Guard shift covered for like the next week or two. *giggle* But he only thinks he got last night off,"  Midnight continued to giggle as Fei joined in.

    Fei was laughing as well, "Now that's a good plan, but I still think that he needs to find someone.  He's a great guy, heavily burdened at times, but he's so lonely.  I'm surprised that he survived the aftermath of the Battle, he was very much attached to his Beloved."

    "Well I kept him busy with his training, but that's besides the point.  You know how he feels about betraying his Beloved.  Even though we all knew that it was coming,  I just kept that part of the Prophesy away from his prying eyes."

    "That was a good idea, now back to the subject at hand.  How are the Boys doing?  Are they okay, I'm worried because we know what happens when Innocents enter the picture when there is a Confrontation."

    "Surprisingly enough, they all seem to have made it through okay.  All but Brian made it through just very sore and bruised.  Brian, well, I told you about the EnergyClash already."

    "That doesn't sound to good,"  Fei said worriedly.

    "No don't get me wrong, Brian is fine on the outside.  But inside, I'm not sure.  If his Gift opened prematurely, then it could have very bad side affects.  Zak is Healing him and should be done soon."

    "Well, Brian's got the best in the Business.  Zak's Healing Gift is still unparalleled even after all these years."

    "That's for sure.  My real reason for calling is that with the verse I read to you and several others, I think that Brian might be the next Chosen of Phoenix.  If so, then that would make the other boys the Chosen of other Clans too.  Do a thorough search of their backgrounds and genealogy.  The DarkClans have been on the rise again.  We may have need of the Chosen soon, but I want to be sure of who they are."

    "Like we had prior notice any other time of who the Chosen are?"

    "Hey, you can't blame me for trying,"  Midnight pouted at the phone.

    "Good point Midnight.  Maybe we can get the upper hand this time.  Oh that brings up a good point, aren't you still Chosen of the Crane?"

    "Yes, I am of the Seu, but you know that the those of the Seu don't fight unless we have to.  I haven't heard anything from the Clan lately, so I might just pay a visit back soon.  Zak is of the Rong still."

    "Okay, if you are Crane, Zak is Dragon, and let's assume that Brian is Phoenix.  What does that leave us?"

    "Well that leaves Teigre, Ursa, KyLan, and Khei for major Clans.  All of the Lower Clans have already Chosen.  Those I've been in contact with, and they are handling their respective sees just fine."

    "That does leave the exact number for the Boys.  I too have heard from the Lower Clans, and I've heard basically the same things."

    "Good news at least.  Just also be aware that the DarkClans are on the rise, so be careful."

    "I will.  I've got to go now, Midnight, take care okay?"

    "You too, Fei,"  Midnight said as Fei hung up the phone.


    Nick awoke in what appeared to be a resplendent palace.  Looking around, he could see beautiful art decorating the room.  The room looked to him bigger than any concert hall that he'd ever been too.  Easily a hundred feet across and long, the room seemed to be just an entrance hall.  Easily seeing his house in just this room alone, Nick was awed by the vast emptiness of the room.  Getting up off of the couch that he was on, he looked at it oddly.

   "Gee, I could've sworn I fell asleep in a bed, not on this couch," Nick thought to himself.

    Shaking his head, he noticed some faint noise coming from the closed doors at one end of the hall.  That was the only door out of the room that he could detect.  He saw his KatanaBlades hanging from a nearby post, so passing them, he grabbed them as he headed toward the door.  Reaching the door, he placed his hand on it and heard a noise from behind him.

    Turning he saw someone or something float down from the ceiling on the far side of the room.  Holding both swords at the ready, he advanced on his adversary.  Looking at the person floating down, he saw the most haunting sight of his life:  HIMSELF IN BLOOD RED CLOTHING WITH BLOOD DRIPPING FROM THE CREATURES KATANABLADES AND MOUTH, EYES BRIGHT RED AND FLAMING.

    < NICKOLAS GENE CARTER, I HAVE COME TO DESTROY YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!! TIMEHEART WILL NEVER BE YOURS!! > echoed a dark and menacing voice, roaring through his mind and leaving it scathed.


    Looking out the window, Midnight noticed that it was dusk and night was soon to come.  Tapping the communication panel on this desk, she checked in on all the boys.  Finding that they were sleeping soundly, Midnight thanked the crew watching them and told them to take the rest of the night off.  Midnight shut down the communication panel and snapped her fingers, disappearing in a small spark of light.  She reappeared in the courtyard, right in front of the Charmed wall.  She reached up and pulled the charm down, igniting it with a bit of Lightning to reduce it to ashes.  Casting the ashes to the wind, she opened the wall and walked down the hallway, shutting the wall behind her.  Coming up to the inner door, she removed that charm as well.  Midnight picked up the blade from the floor and stepped into the chamber.  Zak and Brian were still inside the Ward, but the Flame was no longer covering them.

    < Everything okay? > Midnight sent to Zak.

    < He's fine, just sleeping now.  I'm replenishing his energy as we speak. >  Zak replied, < I'll be done in a few minutes and we can take down the Ward and get him into a bed.  And you've got some questions to answer young lady. >

    < That's good, and what questions?  Anyway, I talked to Fei and she's got the boys covered for the next couple of days. >  Midnight returned.

    Zak gave one last surge of energy to Brian and removed his hands.  Zak stepped down from the bier and laid Brian down.  Turning to Midnight, he nodded and held his hands over Brian.  Zak wove a net of SpellFlame covering Brian, drawing in light from the surrounding candles.  Once that was settled, Zak removed his hands and leaned on the bier for support.  After catching his breath, Zak looked up and saw Midnight etching the symbols onto the Ward already.  Zak looked and brought his energy to bear, sending it out to empower each of the symbols.  Midnight started the chant this time and Zak joined in.  With the end of this chant, the Ward gave a barely audible pop as it released it energies back into the etching in the floor.  Zak moved his hands back over Brian and released him from the covering.  Midnight stepped up to bier and, after removing the charm from Brian's forehead and pocketing it, laid a hand on Brian's shoulder.  Zak laid his hand on the other shoulder, as Midnight whispered a quick couple of words.  They both disappeared from the chamber into an empty bedroom that Midnight had asked to have ready for Brian.  She and Zak released Brian onto the bed and stepped back as the waiting servants took Brian and bathed him, giving him the same treatment that the others received.  Once Brian was properly settled, Zak and Midnight, stepping out into the hall, disappeared in a flash of light to reappear in the Library.  Zak settled into his favourite chair as Midnight did the same.  Several minutes of companionable silence was shared between the two.


    Howie looked up and saw that he was in a church.  Not really understanding how he got here, Howie stood up and looked around.  Reaching his hand out, he felt the MorningStar nearby and was comforted by its presence.  Holding it at his side, he knelt before the altar and crossed himself, whispering a quiet benediction to the Almighty.

    "Howard Dwaine Dorough, greetings and welcome to this humble place of worship,"  came a deep rumbling voice from behind him.

    Howie turned and saw the man cloaked in bearskin, walking up the isle toward him.  Strapped across the man's back was a large maul, similar in design to the MorningStar that he bore.  Standing there, Howie held his MorningStar and drew a breath to ask a question, which caused the stranger to hold up his hand.

    "Kind sir, come with me.  We have much to discuss before your night is through.  Our time is limited and our energy is weak.  Come with me and all will be explained,"  the stranger said and turned on his heel, heading out the back of the church.  Howie shrugged and followed the man, holding his MorningStar at the ready, just in case.


    "Well, what was your impression of the lad?"  Midnight asked Zak.

    "He's got a beautiful mind and soul.  He seems to not have suffered any backlash from the EnergyClash, but his gifts did completely open up.  That means that he needs to be trained in them.  He's got SpellFlame in it's fullest potential, as well as a slew of other Gifts that are equally as powerful."

    "And how does that affect you?"

    "Honestly, I'm too tired to even ponder the possibilities right now.  What I really want is a hot bath and some sleep."

    "You can sleep after you tell me what happened that you had to Gate here directly."

    "Well, I had spent the night out as you requested.  After my night out, I decided to take a walk at Lake Eola and visit the Lady of the Lake.  I noticed that it was real quiet, and didn't think anything of it.  All of a sudden a wall came up around the lake and Agents started to pour into the park at the lake.  I took on those few Agent by hand first and once I got overwhelmed, I summoned the MagiusStaff and the KaosTwins.  We kept our own for a while, but the Agents kept coming and coming.  I used a Wall of Flame to keep them at bay to catch my breath, and looking around, I saw that they were coming to me presumably to help.  I teleported them inside the Wall of Flame, realizing that by then they had seen too much as it was.  They wanted to help out and offered the Loden to arm them.  The Loden apparently has a liking to them and outfitted them very well, as you saw when we came through the Gate.  We fought them around and over the lake, ending up at the portal.  They summoned a Beast and Brian got caught in the EnergyClash, with that I opened the gate, sent everybody through it, called the Lady of the Lake and went through myself."

    "That's quite a feat . . ." Midnight started to say, at which point they heard a loud roar of energy and leapt up ready to do battle.


    Brian floated in what appeared to be pure Light.  Not sure where he was, Brian held his hand out and found the LodenBlade in his hand.  Finding what appeared to be the source of the Light, Brian started to walk towards it.  Finding solid ground was rather difficult, Brian ended up floundering around.  Concentrating on moving towards the Light, Brian found that he could fly like he could at the park.  Brian was enjoying this sensation very much, doing flips and aerial stunts that he never could do in concerts.


    Brian come to sharp halt, hearing the voice all around and inside of him at the same time.  Looking around he could discern any source for the voice to have come from.  The oddest sensation came over him, he felt the Flame within flicker into life.  Holding out his hand, he saw traces of Flame run up and down his arm.  Feeling safer now then just before, Brian continued to look around for the source of the Voice.  Brian noticed that he was in the armour that was protecting him at the park.

    "This is really strange," Brian though to himself, "I could have sworn I didn't drink all that much last night."

    Shadows passed before the source of the Light.  They appeared to be human, but with leathery wings attached.  When they began to fly at him, he saw what they really were:  Daemons.


    Brian held his sword at the ready and engulfed his off hand in Flame, preparing for battle.


    Looking around they saw that they weren't in their Library anymore.  They were now in their formal regalia, even though they didn't remember putting it on.  They noticed that they were on a pathway and decided to follow it, both at the ready with SpellFlame and Lightning.  Zak and Midnight floated down the pathway.  They came upon a building that they instantly recognized as the Celestial Chambers.  Discharging the walked up to the door and each placed a hand on the doors.

    < ENTER, > came a chorus of voices within their minds.

    The doors swung inward silently and they walked into the Celestial Chambers.  Coming to the main hall of the Celestial Council, they dropped to one knee with their left hands covering their right fists outstretched before them.

    "Greetings from Guardians of Earth.  We humbly present ourselves before the Council.  May the Balance prevail above all,"  Zak and Midnight chanted in proper benediction before the Council, "We place ourselves at your mercy."


    Zak and Midnight rose to their feet and faced the Council.


    Zak and Midnight looked at each other and then looked at the Council questioning with their eyes.


    Zak and Midnight heard a large bell being struck and where knocked back into the library when the sound hit them.  Falling to their knees, they just sat there catching their breath.


    AJ woke up in a den of tigers.  Looking around in shock, AJ clamped a hand over his mouth so as to not wake any of the sleeping tigers.  He notice that he was in the fighting clothes that he wore in the park, but his SpikedGauntlets were nowhere to be seen.  Reaching back with his other hand, AJ encountered them.  Patting them, mostly to reassure himself that they were there, AJ held his hands out for balance as he started to walk around the sleeping predators, looking for a way out of the den.  He was in a large cave of sorts, and there were plenty of sleeping cats around him.  He noticed that the cave slightly glowed, enough to see by, but not enough to wake anybody up.

    Upon a pedestal at one end of the cave was a white marble throne.  The throne had a simple tiger skin draped over it, and sitting on the skin was what appeared to be a lady, lounging lazily in the chair.  She didn't seem to notice him, so AJ turned and tried to head out to find an exit to the cave.

    < Alexander James McLean, greetings and welcome to our humble abode, > came a soft voice inside of his head.

    AJ turned and saw that the lady in the chair, now sitting upright and looking like a queen, gazing intently right at him.  She arched her finger, indicating that he should come to her.  AJ reached one hand back to rest on his SpikedGauntlets and proceeded cautiously towards her.


    A tinkling noise caught Zak and Midnight's attention, as gems fell from out of nowhere to the ground before them.  Upon inspection they appeared to be simple rune stones, but these glowed faintly.  Etched onto each of the gems was the character for each of the remaining clans, five in all.  Midnight waved and brought them up to float before her.

    "Now lets go to the LodenCrystal and see what information we can get."

    Zak nodded and got up, lending Midnight a hand to get her to her feet.  Looking at each other, they floated the Crystals between them and disappeared after a few quick phrases.  Reappearing in what would be the throne room, they advanced onto the main chair, that once belonged to Zak's Beloved.  Settling the gems onto the seat cushion, Zak reached up and pulled the LodenCrystal from it's customary position at the head of the chair.  Carrying the LodenCrystal to the Scrying Pool in the center of the room, Zak set the LodenCrystal to float above it.  Once the Loden was set to it's position above the pool, Midnight set the gems to float surrounding the LodenCrystal above the pool.  Suddenly in the pool appeared 5 familiar portraits.  Under each of the gems, a portrait of each Backstreet Boys was present.  Zak and Midnight looked at each other in shock and didn't know what to do with this new knowledge.

Comments are always welcome.  Email me at:

Hope ya like them still.  The re-writes aren't all that much, but it's getting me back to writing more frequently again.  The rest on on the way.