I worked with local artist, Lauren Jenkins (Twitter: @AlwaysOctopid) to create an image of what I imagine Elara would look like in person.
Her skin is based on a person I encountered at the grocery store a few years back. I thought she looked beautiful with the patches on her skin. I later found out that it is a condition called Vitiligo which causes a loss of pigment in the skin.
In the book I want the opportunity to show persons who do not usually appear in most of our popular stories.
Let me know what you think. If you like what you read, please like, share and
The main desk located in the center of the library was always supervised by Hadrine, the librarian. When Vera and Elara arrived, they discovered she was missing. They looked at each other with wrinkled brows.
“You check the stacks,” Elara said. “Maybe she is looking for a book or something. I’ll head to the Herea room. I know that is where Rigel would have gone to find The Book of Azriel.”
The Herea room was enchanted and would only allow Evren to gain access. It contained all of the secrets to the multiverse and, therefore, was restricted. When Elara arrived, the room’s enormous doors were wide open. She stepped inside. The familiar labyrinth of ornately carved black stone bookshelves was in disarray and books lay scattered on the floor. Elara glanced around as if the answers were somewhere in the mess. An echo of quick footsteps closed in behind her, and she spun around to find Vera standing behind her inside the doors of the Herea room.
“Something is not right. Only Evren should be allowed to pass through those doors.”
“Oh, I’m sorry. I’ll leave,” Vera quickly replied, backing up to leave the room.
“No, don’t go. We need to locate Hadrine and find out what is going on.”
A mass of bright red curly hair popped out from behind a giant telescope in the back. It was Hadrine, who had been hiding in the back corner.
“Why are you hiding? Come out, please. What happened, and why is the door to this room open and accessible to anyone?” Elara asked, her voice firm.
Hadrine slowly stepped out from behind the desk in the back and let out a big sigh of relief to find Elara standing there. “I thought he had come back,” she said, pressing her palms to her flushed cheeks.
“I suspect you mean Rigel?” Elara folded her arms across her chest.
“Yes, he has been coming here for a while now. He has always been friendly. We would talk about the books he was reading. I don’t get too many visitors, so it was nice to have someone to talk to,” Hadrine admitted as she looked down at her feet. “I’m afraid I let him into the Herea room. I did not think he was a bad guy, and he kept asking. He was so nice, so I thought, why not?”
Elara looked over at The Book of Azriel—it was still in place. “Is this what he was reading?” she asked rhetorically. “At least he didn’t remove it.”
“Oh, he can’t take that book. That one can never be moved from that spot. He sure did try,” Hadrine said with a little chuckle. “That’s when he started yelling and demanding I let him take the book. When you came in, I thought he was back to try again.”
“Why didn’t you lock the room?” she asked, looking Hadrine directly in the eye.
“I couldn’t lock it back. He used some sort of enchantment that he found in the book on it. I stayed here to make sure he did not try to take anything else.” Hadrine tried to avoid eye contact with Elara.
“What do you mean by take anything else?” she asked, narrowing her eyes.
“I’m afraid he did take one book: Lucifer’s Obscure Enchantments and Concoctions. I thought it was harmless. I let him take it to get him to leave. I’m so very sorry.”
Elara walked over to Azriel’s book. She looked down at the massive object and flipped the cover open with a heavy thud. “Show me what the Almajara saw.”
Hadrine and Vera watched as the pages turned rapidly from one side to the other and Elara’s eyes glowed bright blue. It looked like she was having a conversation with the book. When she nodded her head, the action seemed to trigger the page turns. The book appeared to be feeding the information directly to Elara. Suddenly the book slammed shut and she looked up.
“I must join the others.”
Hadrine and Vera could tell she knew exactly what was going on, but neither dared ask.
Elara waved them on as she walked past them at a swift pace. “Let’s go.”
When they were outside of the room, she pointed to the massive doors made of black stone with ornamental metal edges and commanded “Tala.” The door creaked under its own heavy weight and slammed shut.
“Don’t let anyone in,” she said to Hadrine, making direct eye contact to let her know she meant business.
Elara then turned and walked with purpose down the hall, leading Vera away from the room and leaving Hadrine alone.
“Do you have your Reizen stone?” Elara asked Vera
“Right here.” Vera opened her hand to reveal the orange stone used for travel.
Elara touched her on the shoulder and, eyes glowing blue, gave her a meaningful look. Vera knew what she needed to do. Elara went to meet with the other Evren in the Versamel and Vera went to Qalea.