The Power of Twelve

Chapter One: The Beginning

Aries was the first to disappear.

There was no warning, no sign that anything was going to go wrong on that chilly April day. Lucy had been on her way home to her apartment, whistling to herself and walking on the ledge of the canal as Plue wobbled on his little feet beside her. It was nearly dark, the street lamps lighting her way, when Lucy felt a sense of foreboding. Something was wrong...she didn't know what it was, just that something was way off.

Suddenly, Virgo appeared. She gave a short bow and spoke with barely restrained urgency, "Something is terribly wrong, princess," her sea-blue eyes glanced up to meet Lucy's chocolate-brown ones, "One of the gold keys has dissapeared. Lucy-hime, it's Aries. We don't know where she has gone."

Lucy gulped, and sent Plue back to the spirit world. "Virgo, I'm going to try and summon Aries, so I need you to go back now, please." Virgo nodded and vanished. Lucy took a took a deep breath and took a stance.

"Open, gate of the ram, Aries!" She cried, and waited for the familiar puff of pink that would announce the ram's arrival. But nothing happened. So she tried again, "Open, gate of the ram, Aries!" Once again, no success. Yet she tried several more times, her voice growing more and more desperate. Rain began to hammer down from the dark clouds above her head.

"ARIES!" Lucy couldn't understand why the kind, shy spirit wouldn't appear. Silent tears streamed down her cheeks, blending with the raindrops that had had her soaked to the bone in minutes. She started at Aries's beautiful key, the golden carved horns, and the pink symbol against the white. Carefully, Lucy tucked the key into her key ring, shuddered, and quickly strode back to the guild.

With her mind captivated on getting some help, she failed to notice something:

Aries's key had began to change, until the shining gold luster had darkened to a sinister black, and the symbol had completely faded. Now, Aries was truely gone.

A/N: So...yes. I am still writing Dictionary, (GO AND CHECK IT OUT!) But I had a plot bunny bite me in the behind yesterday, so I wrote this down and revised it a bit. I want the tone for this fic to be steadily dark and suspicious, but rest assured, there will be pairings and at least some fluff in this. (But...mostly action, which I hope I rock at writing.) And again, like many first chapters, this can be considered a prologue.

Note: This will not have a regular update time set until Dictionary is finished. (But it will be updated, don't worry!)

Review please, if you would like me to continue!