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Rolfin's Orb
Book 6 - Ruby
Chapter 5

“Fiona! Callum! Elspet! You’re back!” Julian was the first to see them.

“You’re back! How exciting. Did you have a grand time?” Mairi ran to hug her daughter. She noticed their dirty clothes. “What happened to you?”

“We ate a pomegranate,” Elspet said. “It was good, but messy.”

“Your mother isn’t going to be too pleased,” Mairi said.

“Where did you go this time?” Angus had the book open to see who would be the next man to arrive through the time portal.

“We went to Jordan,” Callum said.

“Jordan? That means Buntabi will be arriving soon,” Johnny said.

Angus scanned the book. “You’re right, Johnny. It will be Buntabi. What name do you have picked out for your um, brother?”

“Jason. Buntabi will be called Jason.” Johnny picked Callum up and swung him about. “Did you have a great time, Callum?”

“You’re making me dizzy. Stop,” Callum said. Johnny put him down. He held onto the wall for a few moments. “It was fun. Wait until we tell you who we met.”

When Callum finished telling them of their experiences in Jordan, Elspet opened Fiona’s pack and took out her sketchpad. “Look. Here’s a picture I drew of Hakim.” She showed it to them.

“Hakim looks like an interesting character,” Jeffrey said.

“He gave us presents too,” Callum said. “He gave me this gold coin and let me keep the lamp. It’s not magic anymore.” He pulled the lamp out of his pocket.

“It’s got Arabic writing around the bottom. May I look at this for a while,” Jimmy said. Callum handed it to him. “Thanks.”

“I’d like to look at the coin, if you don’t mind,” Jesse said. Callum put it in his hand and sat down.

“Hakim gave me a statue of a mouse. It’s cute,” Elspet said, showing Angus.

“It is at that. And what did he give you, Fiona?” Angus looked at his niece.

“This necklace,” she said, pulling it out from inside her shirt. “He told me not to open it until I got home.”

“You’re home now. Open it up,” Mairi said. Fiona opened the star-shaped locket. “That must be Hakim.”

The smiling face seemed alive. Hakim winked at Fiona. She put her hand to her mouth and giggled, winking back, and then she closed it.

“I think Fiona needs to give us the ruby so we can put it in the orb now,” Johnny said.

“Oops, I forgot,” Fiona said. She dug into her pocket and pulled it out. “It’s got sand on it, from the sandstorm.”

Johnny took it from her hand. “Magnificent. There’s the dragon inside.”

Angus put the orb down and took the ruby from Johnny. He put it in its spot. It lit up, as did the other gems. The room filled with colorful lights. Dragons danced on the croft walls. “It seems that the more gems we put in, the more powerful and bright the colors are.” Silence filled the room as they stood silent and in awe, watching the display of luminescence around them.

                                                 *  *  *

Drayton peered in the window. When the ruby was placed in the orb, the red light on his star necklace lit up. “These things are getting brighter.” He crept into the woods. “That’s six of them now. We’re half way there. I can only imagine the power behind that orb after seeing the way it lights up. I’d better go and tell Phelan.” Fearful and hesitant, he headed for the castle.

                                    *  *  *

“Johnny, why are there dragons in the stones? What’s the story behind that?” Callum’s curiosity was contagious.

“Tell us, Johnny. I want to know too,” Fiona said.

Johnny looked at the others. “All right. I’ll tell you about the dragons. Gather around my chair.” Mairi joined the group. Even though the six men knew the story, they sat and listened as Johnny told the story. “Zerahemna told me this story a long time ago. In Xilia, where the wizards live, there are dragons too. They all live together. They even have Dragon School where wizard children can go to learn about the dragons first hand. When a wizard child turns ten years old, about your age,” Johnny said, looking at Callum, Elspet and Fiona, “they are given their very own dragon egg.”

“That would be so cool!” Callum changed from sitting position to kneeling.

“Lehimna, King Rolfin’s wizard, had his own dragon. Its name was Cloudwaltzer.”

“What color was it?” Elspet thought about having her own dragon and giggled.

“She was black.”

Callum remembered, “We saw a black dragon, in Hydra, Greece.”

Johnny nodded. “Cloudwaltzer and Lehimna bonded quickly. They did everything together. While Lehimna practiced his spells and magic, Cloudwaltzer practiced flying, making fire, and other dragon things.”

“Did they love each other?” Fiona took a deep breath and sighed.

“Yes, as much as a wizard and dragon can. That’s what made Lehimna’s decision so difficult.”

“What decision?” Fiona’s eyes grew big and wide.

“As Lehimna grew older and wiser, he realized that he didn’t want to stay in Xilia. He wanted to live with humans and serve them. He wanted to be King Rolfin’s wizard. It nearly broke his wizard heart to leave Cloudwaltzer behind.”

“What happened to the dragon then?” Callum shifted from knee to knee. “Did it die?”

“No, Callum. Cloudwaltzer loved Lehimna enough to let him go. You see, when you really love someone, you want them to be happy and will sacrifice your own happiness for them. Cloudwaltzer knew that Lehimna wanted to live with the humans and that he couldn’t go with him.”

“That’s sad,” Elspet said.

“It’s not sad. It’s wonderful. Lehimna became King Rolfin’s wizard and together they ruled Burill in righteousness and love. King Rolfin was badly injured in battle and  Lehimna left to gather the jewels for the orb. That was going to be his gift to the king. He traveled our earth and with each jewel, he thought of Cloudwaltzer back in Xilia, so he etched her picture into the jewels.”

“What happened to Cloudwaltzer? You never told us yet,” Elspet said.

“Cloudwaltzer went to live with Lehimna’s son, Zerahemna,” Johnny said.

“The wizard, Zerahemna was Lehimna’s son? I didn’t know that,” Elspet said.

“That isn’t possible. You said that there was 45 generations between King Rolfin and King Kegan. That’s probably about 700 years,” Callum said, feeling confused.

“Wizards don’t age the same as humans. They live for a thousand years, wizard time,” Johnny explained.

“Oh. That makes sense then.” Callum relaxed and sat back down.

Fiona looked at the dragon pictures shining on the walls. “Wow! So that’s Cloudwaltzer! Is Cloudwaltzer the dragon that saved us from the Hydra monster in Greece?”

“I would have to say yes, it probably was,” Johnny said. “The wizards have powers we don’t yet understand. Zerahemna, or his son, Lephimah, must have sent it.”

            “How do you know Zerahemna had a son?” Callum stood up and walked over to the orb.

            “You’re forgetting, Callum, that I lived in the days of Zerahemna. I knew him well. We all knew him well,” Johnny said, waving his hand across the room in front of the other men.

            “So Cloudwaltzer is alive and living with Lephimah now. It must have been hard for Zerahemna to leave the dragon too,” Fiona said.

            “It was. He also left his son, as did Lehimna, but that is the way wizards do things in Xilia.”

            “That’s a cool story. Lephimah will probably leave Xilia and live with humans too, since his father and grandfather did. The jewels mean more to me now, Johnny, now that I know the story of the dragons and the wizards. Thanks for telling us,” Fiona said.

            “You’re welcome. I think it’s time to get Elspet and Callum home. Their mum’s will be holding supper,” Johnny said.

            “Why don’t you come to our house for supper? Dad’s been wanting to have you over and Mum’s anxious to meet all your brothers,” Callum said.

            Johnny looked at the others. “That would be grand. We can’t all come though. Someone’s got to stay with the books and the orb.”

            “I’ll stay this time,” Julian said.

            “I’ll stay with Julian,” Jack offered. “You go with them, Angus. It’s time you got away for a while. We’ll be fine here. Besides that, Buntabi should be coming along soon.”

            “Fiona, you and your mum can come too. Elspet, if your mum says you can, you can come too,” Callum said.

            “I’d better go home. I’ve not been much help to Mum lately. I’m sure she needs me, but thanks for asking,” Elspet said.

            “It’s settled. I’ll take Elspet home and then we’ll meet at Callum’s. I hope your mum doesn’t mind this big crowd showing up out of the blue,” Johnny said.

            “She won’t. She loves cooking for others.” Callum opened the door. “Come on then.”

            Angus put the orb in the closet near the front door. He picked up the two books and put them on top of it. “Guard these with your lives,” he cautioned Jack and Julian and followed the others out.

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