"Who are you? Why are you here?"
Zelgadis opened his eyes to find himself sitting in a pleasant garden, on a white bench under the shade of a large oak tree. The sun was bright yellow, blinding somewhat. He could hear the sound of the ocean somewhere. He looked down, seeing Canthrea sitting on the ground in a flowing white dress, her silver hair framing her face beautifully.
"Who are you? Why are you here?" she repeated, her eyes wide, "You keep showing up in my dreams."
"I- its not a dream, Canthrea... at least, not the part about us in the tower. We're really there," Zelgadis tried to explain to her.
"You're real?" Canthrea asked, slowly moving closer to him, lifting the front of her skirts into her arms and walking on her knees.
"Yes, I'm real. I-" he blushed, "I kissed you to try to wake you up."
Canthrea blushed as well, but shyly smiled, "Now that's not something that happens every day. A handsome guy like you coming to wake me up." She picked herself up and sat on the bench next to him.
"H-handsome?" Zelgadis asked, looking down at his hand, realizing it was flesh. "If only this were real," he said sadly.
Canthrea reached over, taking his hand with hers, "It could be," she said softly, leaning close to him. He could smell the scent of ocean and roses on her, it made his heart flutter. He turned his face toward hers. His eyes fell closed, he could feel her breath against his lips, then they met in a tender kiss, unlike anything Zelgadis had ever imagined.
He opened his eyes to look at her beautiful face.
And found himself sitting back from her prone form on the bed, Lina crowing over the books still and Gourry breaking things on the desk, Amelia trying to fix them into neat piles. Zelgadis looked down at Canthrea as she slowly stretched, her eyes fluttering open.
Slowly the powerful sorceress woman turned her head, looking over the scene. "HEY! LEAVE MY THINGS ALONE!" she screamed at the top of her lungs, sitting up, clutching the sheet to her chest. The sudden movement sent up clouds of dust, choking Zelgadis and herself for quite a while. "GET OUT OF MY ROOM!" she gasped and screamed again, small bolts of electricity making sure they all left.
The door slid closed behind Gourry as he ran out, the last to leave. The trio looked at Zelgadis. "What just happened in there?" Gourry asked.
"I- I-" Zelgadis blushed, "I- woke her up..."
Lina sniggered, "No wonder she was in such a bad mood! You're usual wakeup-call is a Digger Volt." Zelgadis glowered at Lina, about to protest, but he closed his mouth, letting her think that.
Amelia slipped closer to his other side, "How did you really wake her up?" she asked.
Zelgadis found himself blushing once again, but before he could answer, the door had opened again and Canthrea stepped out in the flesh, dressed as she was as a ghost. She looked at them all for a long moment then threw herself on Zelgadis. "Oh by L-sama.. Its true! You weren't lying!" she sobbed, "You really were here!" she trembled against him. "I- I never want to sleep again!" she cried.
Nervously, Zelgadis patted Canthrea's shoulder, knowing that Amelia was staring at him with wide watery eyes even if she was behind him now. He suddenly felt like a heel, she was only a little girl and he'd just broken her heart. He supposed it had to have happened some day, he just couldn't see himself living with her the rest of his life. Even if he was human again. She was simply too young.
Canthrea pulled herself together finally and stepped back, wiping her face on her sleeve. Once that was finished, she grabbed hold of Gourry's arm and clung to him. "Please.. just... let me... I- I about went bonkers... do you know how upsetting it is to walk through people?" she looked at Lina and Amelia with wide green eyes.
Amelia smiled some, or tried to. "It probably is hard. I'm glad you're awake now though."
Lina smiled sweetly, trying to look her cutest. "You know, it was my whole agenda to wake you up-" she started to say.
Canthrea laughed softly, "No it wasn't, you little witch. You forget I was there the whole time. But... you do have quite a bit of power about you, so, perhaps.... I'll give you the book."
Canthrea dragged Gourry over to another door and pressed the stone in with her hand. "This way!" she called and they hurried after the Silver Lady. They entered a room that was completely empty, following Canthrea to the middle of the star. She let go of the blonde swordsman and put her hands together, whispering softly, then did a quick spin, throwing gold dust on them all.
Zelgadis rubbed his eyes as the light changed once again. It was mid morning and they were standing outside the tower. "Say- where's Xelloss?" Amelia asked suddenly.
"Why- right here!" said the Trickster Priest as he appeared near Amelia, making her jump.
"Where've you been?" Lina asked, jumping at him and getting him in a choke hold, bashing his head with her fist.
"Gak- w-aiti-ng -f-or- you- t-o ge-t out!" the Mazoku gasped.
"My tower is fortified against even Generals and Priests, such as him," Canthrea said softly, making her way up to the double doors of her tower. Zelgadis noticed for the first time that in each door was carved a book. He watched as Canthrea murmured a word, picking the book off the right leaf of the door and turning, presenting it to Lina.
Lina gaped. "Right- THERE?! IT was THERE the WHOLE TIME?!" she shrieked, if there was anything Lina hated, it was having her time wasted.
Canthrea smiled cutely, "Well of course," she replied. "No one would expect it! Its all yours!"
Lina's mood brightened and she clutched the book to her chest then screamed in pain as it burst into fire. All eyes turned toward Xelloss who shrugged and disappeared. "DAMN YOU XELLOSS!!!!"
Canthrea smirked somewhat, "I suppose that's what you get for fooling with a Mazoku." She clapped her hands, disappearing and a puff of gold dust.
"Canthrea!" Zelgadis cried, running up to the door and banging on it. "Canthrea! What about ME!"
There was a rumble, then suddenly the entire tower disappeared, leaving Zelgadis to stumble forward into the empty space. A piece of paper fluttered down from the air and Zelgadis caught it.
Dear Zelgadis Graywords,
That's the thing about fate. Sometimes, you've just got to deal with it.
Author Note: No, Lina didn't get the spells in the book, and to tell the truth, that wasn't the real book anyway! It was just a clever copy that Canthrea made. The real one- is her tower itself. She'd never intended to give Lina the book anyway. As for poor Zelgadis, Canthrea's 3,000 years of solitude made her just a little bit nutty. Perhaps she'll come back to him someday. Meanwhile, he's going to just have to deal with being heartbroken and swooned on by Amelia.
From the suggestions of my parents, I was going to have Canthrea simply disappear when the book was destroyed by Xelloss because that was what was left of her power and she would just fade away because it was gone. But- I just couldn't do that to her because I like her!
Xelloss's ulterior motive for sending them to find the book was because Beast Master had told him to destroy it, but he couldn't get into the tower because of its fortification against Mazoku and Ryzoku, meaning that even Filia wouldn't have been able to get in either. Zelgadis was also effected by the aura around the building because of his third demon, but he could get in because of the other two parts that made him up. Lina felt strange because she used black magic, which calls upon the powers of the Mazoku, so she had that taint around her. Amelia and Gourry didn't notice it.
Thank you for reading this!!
aLOrIa thE MIgHtY!