An ancient prophecy, handed down through the centuries told of a young Goddess who would one day return to earth, born in earthly form, yet bearing the power of the ancient Gods. Her return would herald the end of times, and she would come into full power in her 33rd year. But first, she must defeat and vanquish the evil Lucero, who was Satan himself. Luna had fourteen days to find the three ancient Emerald Tablets that reveal the Divine secrets of ascension and powerful knowledge to increase each earthly being’s vibrations to evolve into the next level of Earth’s evolving dimensions, and quickly relay it to the world.
Time was running out, for Lucero had already interwoven himself tightly into Society and world affairs and held a strong hold on the Church and governments across the globe. The day of the Spring Equinox and a full moon eclipse was fast approaching, and on this fated day, Lucero was his most powerful. Earth itself had begun to vibrate at a higher rate, bringing those who spiritually evolved from the present third dimension and moving through the fourth into the fifth dimension. Very few humans vibrated at the love vibration; one of total unconditional love for all creatures, big and small.
Lucero must act, and quickly before the inhabitants of earth began to transform into etherical forms. He intended to bring Earth into his own hellish dimension. Ancient legend told of an agreement between Lucero and The Divine Source. That after a Thousand years, if half of the world’s population of humans, vampires, werewolves, and other mythical creatures who kept themselves hidden from humans had not mentally evolved and ascended according to the teachings of the Divine principals, then he would take Earth and all her inhabitants into his own dimensional world. And they had not, remaining barbaric and childish in their thinking, desiring blood lust and violence.
The world, and Lucero had forgotten the Emerald Tablets scattered roughly across the frozen Alaskan tundra, hidden from Lucero for nearly a thousand years. Lucero would stop at nothing to retain his power, seeing Luna as an easy foe. Luna SilverWolf and her younger sister Sybil were raised by faithful followers of the Divine, taught in the ways of the ancient spirituality and connecting to the powerful energy flow of the Divine Creator. The Goddess Diana guided the teaching through the dreams of Luna’s mother, Chantel.
Chantel was a dutiful wife and mother, often distracted by her very human obsessions in the magical arts. She gathered knowledge of herbs and sacred healing medicines, empowering, and teaching her daughters everything she knew. Sybil had rapidly developed a powerful magic that she enjoyed, even though her mother felt the faint tinge of evil upon it. Despite the motherly love she felt for both her daughters, she had favored Luna, for the Goddess had told her that she would bear the one who would free the Earth of Lucero’s oppression. Chantel found no wrong in Luna’s behavior, constantly frowning in frustration upon Sybil’s youthful mischief. And from this favoritism was born a hatred of burning jealousy and resentment between the sisters that tears their family part and threatens to destroy the world.
A face appeared in the heavy mists that swirled and dipped through Luna SilverWolf ’s dream. Immense power flowed though incredibly intense blue eyes that looked deep into Luna's very soul. She stirred fitfully, yet she felt no fear. It was a strangely warm, welcoming feeling that enveloped her. A powerful unconditional love cocooning Luna like a babe in its mother's arms. Luna felt the familiar expanding buoyancy, the direct connection to the Divine Source. A lithe figure in glowing silver rapidly formed from the mists itself. Long golden hair flowed silkily down her shoulders, her flawless skin glimmered moon-white in the shadows that crowded around her.
The Goddess Diana stepped forward and spoke with a firm authoritive voice that was accustomed to being instantly obeyed.
Luna took the hands the Goddess held out to her and stood within her dream.
"You must listen carefully, my child. We had thought your memories would have completely returned to you by now. As they have not, I have no choice but to speed up their full return. It is imperative that you remember fully, time is of the essence now."
Luna looked at her, confusion clouding her thoughts.
"Over two thousand years ago, the time of the Son began and with his death, a new religion arose that sought to control and dominate, but this was not his int nor was it the Divine Force's. There were many who followed the Apostles who followed with pure heart and continued to spread his word throughout the world. But many were falling into the darkness of the evil controlling powers of Lucero, Satan himself."
Diana met Luna’s eyes. "The Divine Force believed in his creations, trusted that they understood the teachings that were now becoming widespread. Lucero approached The Source and offered a deal. That if in two thousand years, half of the world truly worshipped the Source with their hearts and not their mouths, then The Source would win the wager and Lucero would bother Earth no more." She hesitated before continuing. If even one less than the fifty percent failed to worship the Source, then Lucero would win and bring the world and its entire inhabitants into his own dimension known as hell. And now it has come to be. The Source had begun to see that he might very well lose, and he wasn’t yet willing to give up on his creations as he saw so much potential in their rough child-like minds. The Divine laid out a plan after much thought and created three Emerald Tablets written with the magical writing that teaches the speeding up of the vibrational frequencies of the earthly form, as well as Earth herself and the secrets to the direct connection to him. Almost as an afterthought, he included a formula of spells to destroy Lucero. Nearly a thousand years ago, these were hidden in what is now known as Alaska. They remain protected from evil detection by The Divine's own powers. You were chosen over three hundred years ago, and you were sent from the very stars to live among the inhabitants of Earth and guide them towards the Divine. And you did well to spread the word; even though the Church pursued you, you prevailed among the people. After your death, your name was not forgotten, millions worship you still. You chose to fulfill this destiny before you at that time and allowed yourself to be reborn into this body now also, into this family who has trained you the best any Mortal could. Now, it is the time for you to fulfil the Prophecy of the return of the Daughter."
Luna shook her head, frowning at the Goddess.
The Goddess swept her arm out wide. "You do not see the evil that consumes the Earth?"
"I mean; why did you wait so long to come to me?'' Luna sat back down on the bed. “There is no time for me to complete these tasks. My magic is poor and very ineffective.”
"I had no choice. The Divine said you were not ready. He...we had hoped your intervention would not be necessary." Diana sighed. "Lucero's day of power lies in the full eclipse on the day of the Spring Equinox. And by the rules of that wager, if you have not found the three emerald tablets, and shared them with the world before then, Lucero will triumph, and the world will be lost."
Luna jumped to her feet. "You give me three months to find these tablets and spread their message around the world?!" Luna glared at the Goddess. "How dare you come waltzing in here and tell me I have to do this. Find someone else."
The Goddess glared back. "You are the chosen one. You were created for this. This is your destiny!"
Luna stood up, ignoring the furious eyes that watched her. "And If I refuse?"
The Goddess sighed deeply. "The world is lost, and you with it. You were born a powerful witch. You are the Goddess Aradia. You are the only one who can face Lucero and win. There is no one else." The Goddess reached out a gentle hand and swept the disheveled hair from Luna's eyes.
"My daughter, it is unfair, but the Divine knows what he is doing. A month ago, if you had presented the world with the sacred tablets no one would have believed you, much less listened... in fact many will refuse to acknowledge them, but There are others...many others who believe, who pray for your promised return. Now, they cry out for you. The Freedom Fighters need you. They must have a powerful force to see and follow."
Luna dropped her head into her hands as she dropped on to the bed.
"How am I supposed to do this alone?" Diana sat down next to her.
"You won't be alone. There are several who will arrive soon who will guide and teach you all that you need to know. There are others who will join you as they are just now finding out that you are no longer a legend, but real. Some are...shall we say...non-human?"
Luna jerked her head up at Diana, eyes round.
"Non-human! What do you mean, non-human?" "You have heard the fairy tales of old times, No? Fairies,
Gnomes..." She hesitated. "Vampires and werewolves..."
"Vampires and Werewolves!" Luna interrupted her; her voice shrill. "You’re not serious! Just how stupid do you think I am?" she jumped to her feet.
The Goddess laughed softly. "My darling girl. Three hundred years ago, you lived among them as friends in the forests of Northern Italy. Truly, your memories are slow in returning."
"Slow or not, I only want a normal life. I want to get married and have babies and grow old...fall in love..." Luna's voice trailed off as it dawned on her that if this was all true, then she would never have any of it, ever. The Goddess nodded at her, reading her thoughts clearly.
"There is no one else?" Luna whispered.
Diana shook her head. "There is no one else."
A heaviness settled suffocatingly inside her chest and her throat tightened with unshed tears. Luna turned her face away from the Goddess and looked out the window at the darkened night sky.
"How do I tell my father?"
"We have already spoken. He knows. He has always known, Luna."
The Goddess caught her hand, holding up a thick gold ring, its large ruby stone glowed an eerie fire.
"This is the fabled Aradia Stone, your ring of power. It shall bind you to the Scorpion Lord in this life as it has through every lifetime. You will know him for he wears the mate to this one. Both were forged in the stars of heaven from the same golden talisman of the Divine Source."
The Goddess slid the ring on to Luna's right index finger and kissed it. "This is to be worn always. It is your divine protection. You will come into power on your 35th year and you will rule this new world as it was meant to be."
Diana rose to her feet with a swift gracefulness. "I must be going, but I will visit very soon. Your memories will quickly return, Luna. I will explain more in time to come.''
"I fear you expect too much of me, Goddess Diana."
"No. I know what you are capable of. You will not fail."
Diana turned sharp eyes on her daughter. "You are the Goddess Aradia. The Age of the Daughter is now at hand. You must slay the enemy with the sword of truth, the Covent of the Gods. And by your hand alone." The Goddess tilted her head for a moment and smiled warmly. Luna touched her forehead with light fingertips.
"I am dreaming." She assured herself. At the sound of delicate laughter, Luna realized she spoken aloud.
"No, my darling, this is no dream. This is a visitation; I am truly here. And I will come again until you are able to see me with your eyes wide open." Diana tapped the space between Luna’s eyes causing the flesh to hum and tingle wildly beneath her fingers.
The Goddess stepped back into the moonlight flooding in from the window and melted into the swirling mist that instantly arose, leaving behind the trailing scent of wild mountain rose.
Luna awoke early the next morning, unsettled by the dream she had the night before. She met her younger sister in the hall on the way to the kitchen.
"You look like hell."
Sybil told her snidely, bull dozing into Luna's shoulder as they passed each other. Luna rolled her eyes and continued into the kitchen where her father sat drinking his morning coffee.
Ben looked up as she reached for the coffee pot. He noticed the pale lavender shadows beneath her eyes, her normally golden ivory skin was pale and stricken. The full curve of her mouth was drawn tight, and Luna's long golden red hair was bunched up in an uncharacteristic knot on top of her head. Luna looked as if she had rolled right out of bed and headed straight for the kitchen, which is what she did when she was upset over something. Ben eyed her for a moment before remarking casually.
"You look like hell."
Luna stopped the cup halfway to her lips and looked over the rim at her father.
"So, I've been told." She muttered before swallowing a mouthful of scalding hot coffee.
"Cream will cool that down a little." Ben told her, sliding the creamer towards her. She looked at it, then down at the black liquid in her cup, and shook her head. "Might as well slap it on my thighs, that’s where it will end up anyways."
Her father laughed, turning his head quickly to hide his grin. Luna plopped down in the hard-wooden chair and pressed her forehead to the cool tabletop.
"She came to you last night, too?" Ben asked, setting his cup down. Luna lifted her head and met his faded blue eyes.
"She told you?"
He nodded, running a hand through thick white hair, eyes bright blue and lively, despite the deeply etched tired lines in his weathered face. "Your mother and I always knew, even years before you were born. She came to us and told us what you were meant to become. We did our best fulfill her requests in our raising you. It was an honor beyond anything I could have ever asked for, my love."
She poured more coffee in to her cup and leaned back. "So, you think this waiting to the last minute, then expecting me to rush out and save the world is okay?''
He shook his head. "It is my understanding that they had to wait until the time was right or no one would have listened to the message you will bring them."
"Papa, no one person can save the world, least of all, me."
Ben smiled lovingly at his daughter. "It is your destiny."
"I am no Goddess! I don't want this!" Luna wailed. Sybil walked in and tossed her glass into the sink.
Ben sighed. "You are our only hope, Luna. Please try to understand that. You are the only thing standing between us and this evil. Perhaps it is easier to think of yourself as a warrior; one who fights for the justice we are so desperately lacking in this world."
"The Goddess Luna is finally going to save the world?!" Sybil snorted in mock laughter. She turned from the sink and slowly raked her grey eyes up and down Luna's body, her glossed lips curling into a sneer. "The scarecrow is a Goddess now. I thought Goddesses were beautiful and had brains. What happened Luny tune? Aradia reborn as a deformed ugly bitch with no brain?"
Luna dropped her head, attempting to ignore Sybil's blatant pushing. She was looking fora fight as she was every day.
Luna just wasn't in the mood to deal with her today of all days.
"That’s enough!" Ben's voice was sharp with warning.
Sybil glanced at him, shrugging her shoulders. "That’s right! Take her side like you always do! The little Goddess is always right." Sybil burst out, jealousy thick in her voice.
"That’s not true! We loved you both the same!" Ben protested, hurt that he might have failed to be a good parent.
Sybil threw her head back with a sharp bark of laughter, her dark streaked blonde hair falling loose from its combs.
"Bull-crap! You’re a selfish old man, you never cared about anybody but that skinny bitch over there! You never cared about Mamma. It was always Luna this, Luna that...."
Luna interrupted Sybil's tirade "You don't speak to Papa like that! You can talk to me anyway you want, but he doesn’t deserve this." Sybil turned cold grey eyes on her older sister, hatred twisted the pretty face as she spoke scornfully.
"You don't tell me how to talk to my own father!" She slammed her juice glass down hard on the stone counter and it shattered in her hands, blood began running down her fingers on to the floor. "All my life you were the perfect one, well, I'm tired of it!"
Luna jumped to her feet and rushed to her sister with a dish towel. Sybil jerked back from her. "Don't you touch me! This is your fault! You made me cut myself!"
Luna stood back, a bewildered expression on her face as Sybil hit her hard in the face with her bloodied fist. Luna fell back against the counter in shock. Ben jumped to his feet and Sybil shoved him out of her way as she ran around th table to the door, knocking the old man to the floor. For a moment, she looked as if she wanted to run to him, then she threw the towel at Luna.
"I hate you! I hate you both! I never want to see either of you ever again. I pray you both die in a fiery car crash!" Sybil screamed and ran outside.
Luna rushed to her father and helped him to his feet. They both sat in stunned silence, unable to wrap their minds around what had just happened. While it was true that Sybil had always harbored an intense jealousy and resentment against her, Luna couldn't help but feel that somehow, she had done something horrific to her as a child to make Sybil hate her so much.
It seemed to her that the harder she tried to make things right with Sybil, the worse it got, as if her very attempts were fueling the fires of jealous hatred. Luna felt like a dog chasing its tail, running breathlessly in circles, no closer to making Sybil love her than she was in the beginning. Helpless fury welled up inside Luna, flooding her senses until she raged in angry bitterness at her sister, and she stalked into Sybil's bedroom and spent the entire day packing up everything Sybil owned, even the clothing strung out across the floor in different piles. Luna had intended to burn everything in the burn barrel out back but couldn't bring herself to go through with it and instead carried the boxes out to the old shed.
As she carried the last box, the bottom fell out and the contents landed at Luna's feet. Their mother's old photo album caught her eye, half buried in the rick rack Sybil liked to collect. Luna sat down on the edge of Sybil's bed and opened the warped, worn cover. A hard knot rose in Luna's chest as she poured over old photos of her and Sybil as children, Pictures of their mother holding Sybil, staring lovingly into her daughter's eyes so much like her own.
Luna's throat constricted with hot tears and the knot in her chest grew larger. She held her breath as a sharp exquisite pain lanced through her soul, twisting with the finesse of a dull blade. Enormous pressure built and radiated through her veins, pulsing in painful rhyme with every heartbeat, swarming her senses with remorse and guilt. The emotional turmoil roiled within Luna as she began shaking violently, unable to attempt any control. She wanted her mother more than anything at that moment, desperate for the comfort of her arms, her soft voice.
Luna stared at the fading photograph of her mother, taken when she was still healthy and vibrant. Tears blurred the gentle beauty of her face and warm love light that glowed from her grey eyes as she gazed at the camera. Luna was startled by the shrill raw cry of pain from a wounded animal and half rose from the bed. When it came again, she realized it was coming from her. Luna dropped the photo as she gasped for breath, her hands pushing against the pressure in her chest. She couldn't breathe.
The pain was overwhelming her completely, and it felt as though her very heart was being ripped out of her. Ben heard her wounded cry from across the old house and rushed to Sybil's room. He stood transfixed in the doorway, taking in the tormented sobbing of his daughter and saw his wife's photo lying between her bare feet. Ben moved with a swiftness that belied his old age and swooped Luna into his embrace. He knelt on his old, battered knees as he gathered her shaking body close to his chest. Luna was all he had left now. It broke his heart to see her falling into the abyss of pain that had taken him years to escape.
SYBIL SILVERWOLF SHOVED open the wide glass door to the small-town bar several blocks away from her father's house and stalked inside. Waving the bartender over, as she sat down, ordering a Jack Daniels and looked around the darkened room. Horrible classical music played on a loop. There were barely a dozen people in the small bar. Sybil noticed that several men were staring at her from a table across the room, and she rolled her eyes. The bartender, Luke placed her drink in front of her, his eyes glued to her breasts. Sybil followed his watery blue eyes and yanked her scoop neck cotton blouse down to reveal the swells of her large breasts.
She smiled coyly at the blonde, ruddy faced man and pretended to ignore him. She felt suddenly elated, as she always did when men stared at her, panting like dogs. Busy sneaking glances at the bartender to see her effect on him, Sybil failed to notice the four men approaching her at the bar until they took seats on each side of her. There was an ominous presence of chilling depravity that she failed to notice.
"Buy you a drink?" The dark haired handsome young man on her right asked, his brown eyes on her breasts. She laughed, turning towards him, sending a flickering glance at Luke before answering. "Of course, just let me finish this one." She tossed the entire drink back with a flick of her wrist. He raised his heavy eyebrows and pointed to her empty glass.
"You from around here?"
She giggled. "Just down the street. How about you?"
"Just passing through with my buddies here." He spoke to her breasts. Sybil arched her back, pushing her breasts out. Luke filled the glasses and began washing glasses as Sybil flirted with the strangers, moving to the far end of the bar, watching her with concern. The young man told her his name was Borgin. She stared intently into his brown eyes and felt herself swooning.
After three Jack Daniel shots, she got up to go to the restroom, wobbling unsteady on her feet. Halfway across the room, the alcohol hit her hard and she staggered slightly. The four men looked at each other and shared a knowing smile. Returning, she plopped herself down on the bar stool and picked up her new drink. Sybil held it up to the dim light, squinting her eyes at it. A Vodka Martini. She hated Martinis.
But it was free, she shrugged her shoulder and took a big swallow. Her thoughts turned to Luna and her father, a momentary flash of guilt and remorse flitted through her inebriated brain before it was gone, replaced by sudden fury. It was all their fault. She looked down at her clumsily bandaged hand.
They made her the way she was. Before she knew what she was doing, she was deep in conversation with Borgin, complaining about her horrid sister and insipid father. The four companions perked up out of their boredom of her whining complaints when she complained of Luna being Aradia.
"Seriously? Your sister believes she is the Goddess Aradia?" Borgin laughed loudly, shaking his head in disbelief. "Is she a nut case or something?"
Sybil laughed too. "I think so. We were taught all our lives since childhood to be ready from the coming of the evil one and his dominion. My sister is so into this, she thinks she’s going to save the world!" Borgin slid a hand lightly across Sybil's knee.
"You really believe that crap?"
She giggled. The martini was making her woozy. "It's supposed to be true. The Goddess Diana visited her last night, she said and told her she had get ready to save the world. Can you imagine Luna of all people saving the world?!" Sybil cackled, amusing herself.
"And when is Luna supposed to save the world, Sybil?'' Borgin's voice was teasing, but his eyes were deadly serious.
Sybil couldn't keep her thoughts together and struggled to remember, speaking slowly as she became distracted by his hand that now moved slowly to caress her inner thigh beneath her short skirt. "I think she said she had a few months or something like that. Why? It doesn't matter anyway..." He cut off her words as his mouth took hers.
Sybil froze momentarily then responded with heated passion, just as he had known she would. Sybil felt her brain was melting, thoughts were sliding together and disappearing rapidly. She felt his mouth on her breast, sharp pain as he bit her.