Make your own free website on Tripod.com

Mystical Times Round Robin One

Ch. 1 By Keren

Bryn sat boltright in her bunk, hands clutching a blanket, half remembered nightmares dissipating in her mind. Her heart pounded as she sat stiffly, listening for any noise in her cabin. After a moment, she breathed a sigh of relief and allowed some of the tension to ease from her body.

For the last few nights, she had been waking like this. Torn from sleep by memories of some dark terror reaching for her. She could never remember what the nightmare had been. She always awoke only knowing that whatever it was, it was coming closer every night. And it was somehow connected to her past. She quickly got dressed and left her cabin. Sleep would be impossible for the rest of the night. What she needed was some fresh air and open space.

She stepped foot on the deck, and looked around. There was noone in sight. She turned and nodded to Firouz who was at the tillar then went and stood by the rail at starboard, gazing out into the dark sea. It was a calm night.... only a faint hint of a breeze, and the waves were silent, ominously so. And although the heavens were filled with thousands of stars, their brightness was muted by a thin veil of fog. It was dead calm.... almost like an eye of a storm. She shivered as a chill ran through her.

"Bryn... is something the matter?"

She whirled, startled by Sinbad's sudden soft voice behind her. He put a steadying hand on her shoulder as she caught her breath.

"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to startle you," he said, concern tinging his voice.

"It's alright, Sinbad.... I'm sorry. I guess... I'm just jumpy.... I'm fine." she smiled, trying to show she was alright.

He peering closely at her. Despite her words, Sinbad could see the lines of fatigue under her eyes, felt the tension in her shoulders. "Was it another nightmare?" he asked gently.

Bryn hesitated, then sighed heavily. She had never hidden anything from her friend and Captain. He trusted her, was a good friend, even though he didn't know who she had been.

"Yeah, another nightmare. And I still cant remember any of it..." Frustrated, she impatiently blew a stray strand of hair from her eyes.

As usual, especially with her, Sinbad tried to levy the situation with some humour. "Well... are you sure it's not just something you ate? Those sea rations are beginning to get to even me."

Bryn chuckled and shook her head. "No... besides, they're the same sea rations we've eaten before and I've never had nightmares from them. Or your cooking." The look on his face brought another chuckle from her.

He was just going to say something when the look on her face stopped him. "Bryn?... Bryn, what's wrong?"

She just continued to stare intently at something behind him. He turned and he stared in shock.

Roiling towards the Nomad was a huge mass of angry black clouds. Flashes of lightning could be seen - but no thunder. No noise at all.

"Firouz!! Get us away from that thing! Bryn! Go below and warn the others! I need them all on deck, now!" Sinbad bellowed as he ran to unfurl the sails. He headed towards the tillar to help Firouz when he noticed that Bryn hadn't moved.... and that storm or whatever it was was nearly upon them.

"Bryn!" he shouted.

She still didn't move. As he moved towards her, the darkness descended and he was thrown into the middle of a roiling hell. He could barely stand the noise as the wind howled all around him. Tortured voices screamed and wailed in the air. Shades seemed to fly all around. Sinbad struggled to keep his feet beneath him and he clutched the hatch as balance. He peered into the darkness, and gasped. In the middle of all the madness stood Bryn. A small beacon of calm in the eye of the storm. The darkness and shades didn't touch her.

Bryn strained as she felt something familiar in the storm. What.... who... was here?..... She sensed a presence, not of evil. But goodness. Goodness trapped within the evil. And then she heard it. A gentle woman's voice, cutting through the screams and wails. Calm, sorrowful, filled with longing and pain.

"Please, help me.... Bryn..... my daughter....."

Ch. 2 By Mrinda

Sinbad watched in horror as Bryn walked up to the rail and climbed up onto it. Then she jumped into the chaos of the storm and vanished.

"NO!" Sinbad yelled. He was not going to lose another crewmember to the sea. He forced his way across the pitching deck and dove into boiling clouds after her.

Firouz fought with the tiller as it bucked in his grip. Sinbad and Doubar were much better at sailing though these sudden storms. There was4 something about this storm that defied logic. Storms did not just appear out clear star filled sky. He looked down the deck just in time to see Byrn step of the rail in to the storm and Sinbad charge in after her. "Bryn! Sinbad! NO!"

The tiller gave a sudden lurch and wrenched out of his hands. It whipped around like a thing alive and whacked Firouz in the stomach. The blow knocked the breath out the inventer's lungs and he dropped to his knees clutching his stomach. He did not see the next blow coming. The tiller came crashing down on his head sending him into darkness.

Bryn felt herself floating in the chaos of the storm. In all the darkness swirling about her, she did not feel afraid. She knew she should be afraid, but the presence she had felt before was closer now. It was holding back the darkness from her, protecting her.

"Come, my child."

"I'm coming, Grandmother....I'm coming."

Ch. 3 By Keren

Doubar and Rongar came running up on deck, awakened by the cries of Firouz and Sinbad. They looked around in shock at the scene around them. The deck was strewn with debris - smashed cargo boxes, torn bits of sail, and broken masts. But there was no storm - the deck was completely dry.

Doubar looked around, trying to find Sinbad. His eyes grew big as he caught sight of an unconscious Firouz near the tiller. As he made to run towards him, Rongar suddenly grabbed his arm and pointed frantically towards something. Doubar turned to look. His mouth dropped open as he saw the roiling clouds of the evil storm hanging alongside the Nomad, off starboard.

"What in the name of Allah...." he whispered in shock. He had never in all his years of sailing seen such a storm. It looked..... almost alive. He tore his eyes away from the storm as Rongar once again gestured something. "Hm?... Firouz? Firouz!" Doubar whipped around and ran to the tiller. Both he and Rongar got to him as he opened his eyes and sat up.

"Doubar.... Rongar?..." Firouz asked, in a bit of confusion. What had happened to him? Why was he sprawled on the deck?

Doubar huffed impatiently. "Yes, Firouz. Doubar and Rongar. Now that we've established who we are, can you please explain what in blazes happened here? And where are Sinbad and Bryn?"

Firouz got to his feet with their help and then noticed the storm again. Staring at it in fascination, he quickly explained what had happened.

"They did WHAT?!" he bellowed.

Firouz winced as his head protested against Doubar's yell.

"Rongar, you stay with Firouz. Make sure he's alright and take care of the Nomad." Doubar turned on his heels and began to walk away from them.

Rongar and Doubar looked at each other, then Firouz yelled out, "Doubar! Where are you going?"

"After Bryn and Sinbad." Doubar's reply floated through the still night.

Back inside the storm, Sinbad was floating in the calm a few feet away from Bryn. He breathed a sigh of relief that she was alright.... for now. He wouldn't have been able to bear losing her as well to a storm.... magic or non. He maneuvered his way over to her side, just in time to hear her murmur, "I'm coming... grandmother.... I'm coming mother...."

Sinbad reached out and gently took her arm, turning her towards him. Her eyes were unreadable, focused on something and Sinbad realized she was in one of her magical trances.

A bright light appeared within the calm that protected them from the roiling blackness. Bryn began to move towards it and Sinbad gripped her arm tightly, holding her back. He tried to peer into it but couldn't see anything. He didn't know what it was, if it held hidden danger or evil. Or a trap. And he wasn't about to let Bryn go in it.

"Bryn..." Sinbad tried to break through to her. She just looked at the light and he could feel her straining to move towards it.

Suddenly, Sinbad heard a roar and looked up to see a dark form howling and streaking towards them. He held Bryn close to him and shielded her from whatever was going to happen.

And nothing happened. He risked a glance up and saw that he and Bryn were enclosed in a bubble of light -- light coming from their bracelets and the light that Bryn still strained to get to.

"Come to the light, Sinbad....." he heard a gentle, sad voice echo within the bubble. "Bring my dear child.... my Bryn to me...."

Ch. 4 By Keren

The sadness and yearning in that voice touched a chord in Sinbad's heart. It was a voice of a mother, wanting her child.... a voice he always wished he could hear. He wrapped a protective arm around Bryn and slowly walked into the light.

They appeared on the other side. Wisps of white clouds and smoke floated by as Sinbad peered through them. He could make out two female figures gliding towards them. Bryn suddenly moaned and would have slipped to the ground if he had not had an arm around her. He supported her as she shook her head.

"Bryn?.... you alright?" he asked gently.

She looked up at him in bewilderment. "Sinbad?..." she asked then looked to take in their surroundings. "What... where are we? What happened?"

Sinbad gave her a half smile and murmured, "I was kinda hoping you could explain it all..." Then he motioned with his head towards the two women. "I think they were calling for you."

Bryn disentangled herself from his arms and turned to look. She frowned in puzzlement. Then as the two women came out of the mist, both Sinbad and Bryn gasped.... for they bore a striking resemblance to each other - and to Bryn.

One was middle-aged with dark silken hair that was just beginning to grey around the edge. Her face was filled with joy at seeing Bryn - but Sinbad could also see hints of fear in the woman's dark eyes.

The other was older, her hair completely grey. She carried a golden cane but had little need for it, as far as Sinbad could see. She also had joy and fear on her face.

Bryn slowly walked up to the women. "Mother......? Grandmother?....." she asked hesitantly.

The two women nodded and the three women hugged each other tightly.

"Oh, my Bryn. My dear, sweet child. Look at you.... you've grown so tall... and so beautiful," her mother whispered as she hugged her child to her.

"Mother...." Bryn whispered as she returned the hug. And for the first time that she could remember, she felt a part of something - a part of a family. Blood relation. She wiped a stray tear that had trickled from her eyes and slowly pulled back. She turned around to face Sinbad and smiled as she held out her hand to him.

Sinbad walked to them and Bryn said, "Sinbad.... I'd like you to meet.... my mother. And grandmother."

Sinbad smiled and nodded at them. Then asked her, "Bryn... do you have your memories back?"

She frowned and shook her head. "No.... I know who they are but.... I don't have any other memories....."

"That is for your protection, my dear. Until your powers are stronger and when the time is right, your memory will not return," her grandmother softly spoke.

"Protection from what? From who?" Bryn asked.

Her mother looked past her daughter, towards the darkness roiling outside the light. "From that.... the darkness and evil.... and...." she hesitated.

"And what? Please, mother. Tell me," Bryn pleaded.

"And your father, dearest Bryn."

Ch. 5 By Joanna

Bryn stood there stunned. "My father? Mother, Grandmother, please tell me who he is," she pleaded, needing to know the answer, but afraid of it as well.

"My child, I'm afraid we cannot tell you, just yet. You have a harsh journey ahead, and the choice you make must be your own, and not made because of your lineage," her grandmother softly says, a sadness in her features, because of the predicaments that are to befall her beautiful granddaughter.

"Sinbad will be there to help you. Follow your heart, and the bracelets will lead you true. And know this daughter, we love you always, Bryn." With that, Bryn's mother and grandmother started to fade out of the soft rainbow light.

"No!" Bryn tried to follow, but Sinbad held her back. Sobbing with grief over losing what she just found, she fell into Sinbad's arms. Sinbad held her to him, allowing her the moment of grief. Something tells him she needs this, and needs him now.

He gently rocks her, stroking her dark silken strands of hair. He finds himself wondering about things he shouldn't be while they are in this realm of flux. Things like how her hair can be so soft, or how good it feels just to hold her. He softly lets out a breath that was somehow caught in his lungs.

Doubar found himself back on the deck of the Nomad. He looked around slightly confused, then saw Rongar and Firouz staring at him. "What's the matter? Why did I come back here?"

"We don't know, but I think that whatever created this storm didn't want you to follow Bryn and Sinbad," Firouz stated the obvious reason. "But I think we have another worry right now. Look out!"

The crew was about to be attacked by dark, shade-like creatures, that were the same color as the clouds they hid in.

"How do we fight those? With Bryn gone, we have no magic," Doubar said as they prepared for the shadows to attack. Rongar shrugged as he readied a dirk.

Bryn finally calmed herself down after a few minutes. She wiped her tears away as she stepped back from Sinbad's arms. "Thank you."

He smiled at her. "Anytime." Sinbad's features became serious very quickly. "Bryn, we have company," as he readied his sword.

Ch. 6 By Ariel

The mysterious creatures swooped down upon the remaining members of the crew. Rongar's dirk's flew left and right, but somehow managed to keep missing each target. Doubar's strength was no match for the agile demons, and Firouz was having more difficulty thinking straight; his head ached something fierce. Who would have guessed he'd been taken out by the tiller.....

One of the gruesome beings parted from the rest, flying higher into the dark clouds, until it swiftly turned, plummeting down towards earth, encased in a smoking ball of unearthly fire.

"Astonishing!"

Rongar looked questioningly towards the scientist, whose face was turned upwards, eyes following the death trail of the monster. Firouz noticed the look out of the corner of his eye, and rose to the challenge.

"oh. My guess?? The level of precipitation in the air combined with the oxygen levels and the rising temperatures in the creatures must have-"

"Firouz! No offense, but your scientific babbling isn't getting us anywhere!"

"Oh course....that was just a guess...."

Sinbad's sword placed in front of the two in a protective manner did not strike fear into the hearts of those travelling towards him. Bryn, still slightly overcome by the previous encounter, was staring blindly at the faces descending to the two lost warriors.

Their features became more and more distinguished, their eyes filled with emptiness. They came from behind, in front, forming a circle until Sinbad and Bryn were surrounded. The faces leaned in, laughing, jeering. Bryn and Sinbad were fine, until they could recognize the faces. Tetsu... Mutaro... Dim-Dim... a man who would later be known as Dermott... Nell.... even Doubar, Rongar and Firouz.

The ground between the two friends split, dividing them.

"Bryn!" Sinbad bellowed, as she went down under the attack of the demonic figures.

Ch. 7 By Seeker

Firouz kept staring at the mysterious creature plummeting himself towards the Nomad encased in a smoking ball of unearthly fire. "I wonder", he thought to himself,

"Yes, I think it will work!" "Doubar!" Firouz shouted loudly, "Do you remember that large shield we got from the Sultan last month? The shiny one?"

Doubar spun around and faced Firouz, "Yes, it's up on the forecastle, tied down. But why"

"Don't ask!" Firouz responded briskly, "Just get it. Quickly, there's no time to lose!"

Doubar leaped to the forecastle like a man possessed and with a single stroke of his sword freed the shield of the ropes. He quickly picked up the shield and brought it to Firouz, in spite of it's size and weight.

"Doubar, see that fireball coming at us? Help me to set the shield so that the fireball will hit it square on!" cried Firouz above the din of the battle. "Careful, now lower your end a bit, I want to deflect it into the sea."

Doubar grunted as they quickly set the shield in position. The fireball kept hurtling towards them at a terrifying rate. Moments from impact! Another of the mysterious strangers lunged out at Doubar, catching him off guard and causing him to release the shield. Doubar fiercely backhanded the stranger, setting the mysterious one flying over the edge of the deck and into the sea with a familiar hiss of steam.

"What, in Allah's name?" Doubar uttered.

The ball of fire, for that was what it was by now, was still coming and burning whiter and whiter! Faster it came, picking up more speed as it punctured through the remaining layer of clouds.

"DOUBAR!" shrieked Firouz, "Help! Quickly!"

Doubar immediately recovered and grabbed the shield, positioning it and steeling himself just before the fireball hit the shield. Down like an arrow shot from a crossbow, streaked the ball of white fire. It hit the shield just slightly to the side of the center of the shield closest to the deck railing and shot out over the sea. All at once it hit the ocean. The sound of the impact like a tremendous clap of thunder. Water shot up in a spray that covered the boat from stem to stern even though the Nomad was more that a 1,000 yards away from the impact.

The spray, as it pelted the Nomad and all onboard, had a strange effect on the Mysterious creatures. With each drop they let out unearthly howls and began to weaken so that soon the crew of the Nomad felt like they were finally on equal footing.

Rongar, pike in one hand and sword in the other, had been in close combat with three of the creatures when the spray hit. He spun around dodging a blow from one of the creatures. At the same time, he managed to hit the middle one with the broad side of his sword, sending it into the sea where it, too, landed and disappeared with a hiss. Rongar took advantage of the moment as the two remaining creatures seemed fixed to the deck, looking at the demise of their comrade. Rongar spun low and caught the one on the left with his pike just below the knees, sending it to the deck. Without seeming to recover, Rongar swung his sword making an "S" in the air. The creature feinted to the left to avoid the sword only to be caught in it's midsection as the mighty sword carved the bottom portion of the "S". Down it went on the deck where it landed in a puddle and vaporized in a hiss of steam.

Sinbad looked on, helpless, as across the chasm the dark demonic figures began to descend on Bryn. Even before they came close Bryn began to feel the downward force, the pressure of the evil descending on her.

"SINBAD!" she called out.

Ch. 8 By Callisto

*There must be something I can do*Sinbad thought to himself. He tried to move but something held him back.

"SINBAD!" Bryn called again.

The dark figures were swirling around her getting closer and closer. They were screeching and laughing and making hideous sounds and Bryn couldn't take it anymore. She put her hands to her ears and screamed painfully. The figures circled faster and they seemed to get bigger.

Sinbad used all his strength, but he still couldn't move. He could barley see Bryn now, the darkness had almost completely covered her.

"SINBAD! DO SOMETHING!" Bryn screamed terrified, unable to move.

"I CAN'T MOVE, BRYN!" Sinbad yelled back. He heard more screams from Bryn, but the demon's screeches were louder and they blocked her out. He shut his eyes tightly and suddenly, the noise stopped. All he could hear was the sound of the ocean and his own breathing. He opened his eyes and saw that he was still inside the bubble. He looked for Bryn.

"Bryn?"

No answer. Bryn was gone. Whoever or whatever was here before, took her with them. He knelt and pushed against the bubble, it didn't move. He took out his sword and held it above his head and plunged it into the bottom of the round floating object. It started to shake, light poured from the tear that Sinbad had made. It started to grow larger. Sinbad looked through the hole and saw rough blue water below him. There was no land in sight. He moved towards the back of the small bubble. The tear slowly grew bigger, and Sinbad wished he would have waited.

Doubar, Firouz and Rongar watched as the darkness vanished and a single bubble of light and magic floated above the water further and further away.

"We should follow that... thing." Doubar pointed. Rongar shook his head. Doubar look puzzled.

"Those creatures could be in there," Firouz added.

"And what if Sinbad and Bryn are in there?" Doubar asked and Firouz shrugged. "And what if they are being carried to their doom?"

Bryn awoke and found herself in pitch darkness. She could only hear the sound of her own breathing. She tried to move but found herself chained down.

*I have to use my magic somehow* She thought. She concentrated all her energy on freeing herself. One chain snapped. She heard movement in the room, but couldn't see anything.

The hole in the bubble was very big now and Sinbad was half on the bubble and half not. The hole widened some more and the whole bubble shook. He started to fall, but grabbed on to the edge of the object. It gave way and he plunged downwards towards the sea a hundred feet below him.

Ch. 9 By Keren/Joanna


"No!" he screamed in his mind as he hurtled towards the sea. If he hit the waters at this speed, he'd be knocked unconscious. And with no Nomad in sight, there would be no one around to help him. Or Bryn. Bryn.... he had to help her. Had to save her.... Suddenly, his bracelet began to glow. The light grew brighter until it totally enveloped him. And Sinbad disappeared.

Bryn tried to peer into the darkness, searching for the source of the movement. She heard it again.... closer. Shivers of dread and evil went up her spine. She concentrated again on breaking the second chain that held her. As the chains rattled with her movement, she tried to determine what she was laying on. An alter? The floor?.... no... it felt more like.... she was floating. Laying on air.

The second chain wasn't cooperating as nicely as the first chain had. Beads of sweat began to gather on her brow as she once again gathered her strength.

Suddenly, she heard a low voice hissing in the darkness. It's tone was pure evil and she involuntarily shuddered.

"You're not sstrong enough... give up and join ussss.... join the darkness. Embrace the darkness within you...."

Bryn shook her head. "No... I AM strong enough. And I will NEVER join you...." she whispered, even as she felt her strength begin to disappear.

The voice chuckled. "You're growing weaker. And no one is here to help you. Where are your "friends" now? Where is your Sinbad? Not here.... you are alone.... give in to the darkness, Bryn.... give in...."

"No.... no.!" she cried out. Her fear of the evil in the darkness gave her renewed strength and she broke the last chain. Suddenly free of her bonds, she drifted in the darkness.

"Join... join with us, Bryn...." The single voice was joined by another. And another. Soon, their voices and their chant were all she could hear. Over and over - never pausing, never giving her a moment to think clearly, crashing down on her in waves. She put her hands over her ears, trying to find some reprieve.

"We can show you what you are missing... from your memories..." the voices purred seductively, soothingly.

Despite herself, she found herself listening to them. Being swayed by their words. It was so tempting.... to discover everything she was missing.... to learn about her past.... herself.... She shook her head and groaned. "No...." she whispered, trying to gather her strength again. But without a voice speaking on behalf of the good, she was having a hard time finding her way back to the light.

"Just give us your hand.." The voices were so soothing, promising to give her everything she has wanted since she awoke on the island.

Shakily, Bryn slowly extended her hand out towards the voices. A claw reached out from the darkness, moving towards her hand. Just as they were about to touch, Bryn's wrist was suddenly captured in a hand. A strong, calloused hand. One that had a rainbow bracelet like hers.

"No, Bryn.... you have the strength to resist. Don't give in to them," Sinbad's gentle voice drifted in the darkness.

"Sinbad!" she cried out in relief as she turned in the direction of his voice. But her eyes were still confused. In the darkness, she couldn't tell if it was really him or the demons, playing tricks with her. "No...." she murmured in confusion. "You can't be here.... you weren't here before! Stop toying with me!" she cried out, struggling to free her hand from his grip.

He held on tighter, pulling her to him. "Bryn, it's me, Sinbad. I'm sorry I wasn't here earlier, I came back as soon as I could."

But Bryn was still being pulled by the demons. Their voices had gotten louder, even more seductive. She sagged from the onslaught.

"Listen to me, Bryn. To my voice. Trust your instincts. Trust in me.... in what we share," Sinbad's voice broke through the other voices.

Her eyes were suddenly focused on her bracelet that started to glow. And another glow joined it.

"Sinbad..." she whispered in relief, gripping his hand tightly. She looked up to his face, that was illuminated by the glow of the bracelets.

He grinned. "Yes. It's me...."

She raised an eyebrow at him. "What took you so long?"

The voices suddenly howled in anger. Sinbad looked around the darkness. "It's a long story... you really want me to take the time to explain now?"

"No, not at all..." Bryn got a far away look to her, as of she was listening to the voices again.

"Bryn.... Bryn!" Sinbad's grip tightened on her hand as he felt her slipping away again.

"Sin...bad...." she softly called as she went limp in his arms.

The Nomad sailed towards the bubble. Firouz was looking at it through his magnascope when Doubar and Rongar heard him gasp.

"What? What happened, Firouz?" Doubar asked as he ran over to the inventor.

Firouz slowly lowered the magnascope and looked at his friend. "It.... it popped. And I saw someone... falling. Then the person vanished....."

"Was it... Sinbad?" Doubar asked with concern.

Firouz shook his head. "I don't know, Doubar... it was too far away to see clearly. But with the bubble gone, what do we do now?"

Rongar caught their attention by pointing to the black storm cloud that was still within sight but moving quickly away.

Doubar pointed at it and bellowed, "Follow that cloud!"

Ch. 10 By Joanna/Keren


he Nomad made a slight course correction, and she picked up wind. The same wind that was pushing the storm.

Firouz pulls the magnascope from his eye "Doubar, it looks like we are gaining."

Doubar nodded. He was worried about his little brother and Bryn. If either of them were harmed...

They watched as the storm seemed to darken more and intensify. Something was happening in there...

The Nomad finds itself back among the clouds. They are deep and heavy with black magic. Even Firouz can sense the malignancy of the storm.

Then, just as quickly as they appeared before, the shades came out of the clouds, ready to attack the Nomad crew...

Sinbad carefully lays Bryn down as she collapses into his arms. "Bryn?" He checked to make sure she was still alive. He then cradles her in his arms, and sets about to wait for her to finish the inner battle that must be raging. Remembering Bryn's Grandmother's words about her having to make her own choice. He could see her struggling against something - something only she could see - as her emotions flitted across her face. He gently moves a wisp of hair away from her face. "Fight it, Bryn. Fight and come back to me..." he whispered in the darkness as he held her tighter.

Bryn does her best fighting the demons taunting her soul. Slowly, one by one, they pull back, almost as if respectful.

"Cowards, why do you not fight me?" Bryn cried in battlelust.

"Bryn.....my daughter. So beautiful you have become. So like your mother."

Bryn narrowed her eyes and tried to peer into the darkness. That voice...it gave her shudders to hear it. And yet.... so familiar. Soothing in its own twisted way.

"Show yourself, whoever you are," Bryn commanded.

A lone dark cloaked figure appears in a wash of evil light. She feels wave after wave of pure evil emanate from him, growing stronger as he glides closer to her. She takes a step back when the cloaked figure approaches. It holds out a gloved hand to her.

"Take my hand, and you will know all your heart's desires."

"No," Bryn spoke with an assurance she didn't really feel.

"All your memories will return. You'll remember who you are... what your past was like... you'll know your family...." Bryn couldn't help but begin to be swayed by his words. "your hopes and dreams.... you'll remember all of it. Just join me, my daughter.... join me in the darkness. Embrace the darkness within you."

Bryn looks shaken, torn, by her desire to know what she was like, and not joining the darkness. 'No, I can't. Even if you are my father, I can't embrace the darkness,' she thinks to herself.

"Wouldn't you like to know.... what you were like as a child.... what made you happy.... sad.... were you ever in love...."

Bryn hesitates, looking like the lost child that she once was. "Father, I want to know, I want to remember, I want to remember you..."she trails off, tears starting to form in her eyes. She is so torn. Her mind is telling her one thing. Her heart another. Which to follow? Which would lead her to her true life?

Just then, she feels a shadow hand brush back a lock of hair. Gentle. Soft.... familiar. A smile grows across her face, while she remembers the few and precious times they shared.

"Daughter, you are occupied by something else?"

The cloaked one's dark voice jolted her from her memories back into the present. She shuddered. She didn't want to be here.... in this darkness, surrounded by evil.

"Fight it, Bryn. Fight and come back to me..."

She heard Sinbad's gentle voice in her mind.

'Sinbad?' she whispers to herself. And she was torn once again from Sinbad as the air around her roiled.

"I grow weary of this, daughter...." the voice became sinister, more true to it's nature. "You WILL join with me. Now."

"I don't belong with you father. I'm sorry, but I cannot shed the light for the dark." She drew on her inner strength and continued. "I choose my own path. With the help of my new family. With those that truly care for me."

With a roar of anger, the cloaked figure swooped down towards her. She raised her arm to protect herself. As she did so, her rainbow bracelet began to glow.

With a gasp, Bryn wakes up, the bracelets glowing. Both hers and Sinbad's.

Then Sinbad softly called, "Bryn...."

She looks up into his blue eyes and smiles. He smiles back in relief. "You alright?" he asks gently.

She nods, not able to find her voice just now.

He's smoothing back her hair, the few tendrils that escaped. "Welcome back" he smiles to her.

"Thank you." A dark look crosses her face momentarily, and she looks away, looking at the pocket realm.

He helps her to her feet. Still weak from her internal battle with the darkness, she leans against him. She can still feel her father's voice calling out to her. She closes her eyes. She's so tired. She doesn't want to listen anymore.

Sinbad gently places a hand on her cheek, turning her head towards him."Bryn.... let's go. You won't find what you're looking for here. Let's go home.... back to the Nomad. Back to our friends.... our family...." While holding her face, he gently wipes away a tear, then brings his face to hers, for a soft, tender kiss.

The darkness around them howls in rage, but they don't hear anything. Oblivious to everything but each other. A tender bubble of white envelops them and they disappear from the storm.

On the Nomad, the shades are starting their attack. Then just as suddenly, with a deafening howl, the shades disperse. Doubar exclaims, "What the devil?" when the cloud that they had been following suddenly disappears... He looks over at Firouz who shrugs. "Magical often works in non-logical ways...."

Rongar just shrugs it off, and sheathes his throwing dirk.

A bright light suddenly appears on the deck. As the light fades, they can see Bryn and Sinbad. The two are still entwined in a kiss.

They slowly break apart, and they turn to see that they are back on the Nomad, and the entire crew is standing around looking at them, grinning like idiots.

Sinbad shook his head and, taking Bryn's hand, walked over to the others. "What are you staring at...let's continue on our way."

"Aye, Captain," Doubar calls out on his way back to the tiller.

The rest of the crew starts to busy themselves making way again.

The Nomad sails along while Sinbad and Bryn stand at the rail entwined like new lovers, looking out at the waters. Watching over them from the scrying pool, Bryn's mother and grandmother watch silently as Sinbad gently nuzzles Bryn's neck. They share a look, and turn back to the pool, in time to see the couple share a sweet kiss. Bryn's mother and grandmother smile, sharing in their daughter's happiness, and the choice she made.

The End