There are many kinds of Power in the Worlds: fire and signs, water and tides, breath and song, earth and stone. But nothing in all the Worlds is more powerful than Creation, and her sister Destruction.

Helena did not realize at two, finger-painting with charcoal, that she was invoking a Power which would one day shape her dreams. She did not understand, at seven, that every drawing she made had a life of its own. So when, at fifteen, her Creations led her to another World...she remained blissfully ignorant for a time. But no ignorance lasts forever.

Soon it became clear that this World of Light and Shadow was her world, Created from her drawings. Every scribble had hidden meanings, and Helena could sense a connection with every crack in the strange-yet-familiar pavement, every uncloudlike wisp in the sky. She knew, somehow, how to trick a sphinx, how to charm the giants. And no matter where she went in the World of Light and Shadow, she could sense the existence of the MirrorMask, though she searched fruitlessly for its exact location.

Nothing in this World could completely surprise her. It did not shock Helena that the Light Queen was her mother who required waking. Nor that the Dark Queen was also her mother, although seeing all the worst things her mother could become was by far more disturbing. But when Helena realized that the Dark Princess was really in her world, yelling at her dad and tearing up her drawings one by one...that horror never completely left.

Even after she found the MirrorMask, and sent the Dark Princess back to her rightful place in the World of Light and Shadow, Helena remained acutely aware of what the Dark Princess would have done to her life. And she hated it. It was not unreasonable for her to hate that possibility...after all, it was only through luck and magic that she was not stuck as the Dark Queen's pet. On that count, Helena was sorry. As much as the possibility of the Dark Princess ruining her life was hateful, Helena did not hate the Dark Princess, after all. No more than she hated the Dark Queen, or the sphinxes, or the Shadow itself. In the same way Helena could feel the pavement cracks and unknown paths of the World of Light and Shadow, she knew that they were each playing their Roles, doing what was natural. The World of Light and Shadow was partly her Creation, but Helena knew that there were levels of Creation active which were far beyond her own.

As time wore on, and adventure receded into memory, one thing troubled her. At night she lay awake, wondering about the fate of Valentine and the Dark Princess. Did they escape together, in his tower? Did the Dark Queen recapture the Princess? Did she hurt Valentine? The last was most worrisome, because although Valentine had partly betrayed her, she knew somehow that he would not forget her name like he did the others. He came back for her, which he doubtless had never done before. He apologized to his tower. And Helena had a strong suspicion that he even managed to change the future he saw when he bit the Future Fruit. There were only waiters in her world, after all.

So when, one normal night at the Big Top, she was tipped and caught by a boy with a face, Helena was very happy indeed. He might not know anything about the other World, and his other Self, but she did. She could not control what happened to Valentine in the World of Light and Shadow, but this this world, things would turn out just fine.