A Return to Faith. A Return to Avalon.

Chapter 1

Tuesday March 14th, 2006
Boston, Massachusetts
Logan International Airport
Terminal B
10:30 p.m.

“Slán go fóill,” Elizabeth Luciano replied before disconnecting the call on her cell. Shifting her bag further up on her shoulder, she quickly made her way towards Terminal C and Boston Landing, where she knew Jasmine and Juli would be waiting, and Rebecca would join them once she debarked, she was due to land any minute.

“Betsy!” Jasmine called when she spotted her, and Elizabeth changed directions, heading towards Starbucks.

“You are a princess,” Elizabeth smiled when Jasmine handed her a venti hot chocolate, after they shared a hug. Slipping into a free chair at the table outside the store, she let her bag drop to the floor by her feet.

“You look like hell Betsy,” Juli spoke up softly before leaning over to give Elizabeth a one-armed hug.

“Look who’s talking,” Elizabeth shot back, tucking her hair, which was now a few inches longer than it had been in college, behind an ear. She had been at work when the call came just after lunch, and then she had proceeded to try and call Sara back only to get voicemail. From there she had called Rebecca, Jasmine, and Juli, eventually everyone getting in on a conference call, and discussing what they were going to do, both Elizabeth and Rebecca already at their local airports. In the end it had been decided they would all be going, if one of them needed help, they all went. In a way it worked out rather well that she and Rebecca lived on the opposite side of the country, Juli and Jasmine hadn’t been able to get away as fast as them, so they had only arrived forty minutes earlier.

The decision then had been that Jasmine and Juli would wait for Rebecca and herself to arrive then all four would get a rental and head towards home. They also decided not to tell Billy, because they didn't know if Sara might just get a hotel for the night, or go there...and they didn't want to worry Billy; he had enough on his mind with his illness...

“Did you talk to Elaine?” Juli asked after a few moments of silence and Elizabeth looked up at her before nodding. Each of them led unique lives now; she had become a lawyer living in Seattle...Juli was in Atlanta, a neurologist working on a specialized team of doctors dealing with cases that included a good deal of unexplained symptoms. Juli was the one who didn't care much about dating, though she wasn't lacking in the offers department, her once long hair was shorter, a bob that brushed her chin, but that only made her eyes stand out more. She had also gained an inch since they first met twenty years before, but was still tall and slim. And she still rode, one of the few things she kept from her Texas roots, her love of horses.

Jasmine as well had become a doctor, Infectious Disease Specialist, with a gift for Diagnosing conditions. She was actually the one in charge of the team that Juli was involved with. All in all, she hadn't changed much; her hair was longer, halfway down her back when she had it in her natural curls, even longer straightened. Jasmine had been the first in their group to learn you couldn't really tell anyone the truth of your past, she had made that mistake years before, telling her now ex-girlfriend. Elizabeth could still remember that trip vividly, everyone dropped everything and was headed to Baltimore to be with her, well Juli was already there but the rest of them dropped everything.

That had actually been the last time they were all together because one of them was hurt...save when Billy got the news. And that had been just two years earlier...fortunately at the time Sara had been on mandatory leave so she never had to explain where she was going and all of that to her co-workers...the rest of them weren't as much of a work-a-holic as the youngest in their circle...they never had to explain.

“Not for nuttin' but could you guys have actually met me at my gate or something?” Rebecca's voice drew their attention before Elizabeth had a chance to answer Juli's question.

“It's called Starbucks girlfriend, and don't start having conniptions on us,” Juli shot back before everyone rose to exchange hugs.

While Rebecca got her own Caramel Macchiato, the three waited outside the restaurant, glancing over at Juli, Elizabeth nodded finally. “Left a message before I boarded, and it got to her so that she was waiting to call me when I debarked. She's flying out in the morning, when she heard that Sar was pregnant...”

“Good, we all know Sara's going to need us, but she's going to need Elaine too...she is like a mother to both of you,” Jasmine agreed softly before nodding to the door as Rebecca came out. The subject was dropped; Rebecca never liked to hear about Sara and Elizabeth's religion...That was her biggest pet peeve, other than Jasmine’s lifestyle choices, which led to her always trying to convert Jasmine back to the opposite sex. True she accepted them, but she still didn't like some of the choices they made, they all knew that, so they just tended to avoid certain subjects if possible.

“Meant to axeya,” Rebecca began as they all headed towards baggage claim. “We going to call and warn Billy boy now? Or just surprise him?”

“Beccs, it's nearly eleven, I'm not waking that man up when he needs his sleep,” Elizabeth rolled her eyes. “Besides, we're still a bit away from home, I don't want him panicking if she's not there...we all know how protective he is of her.”

“We're all protective girlfriend,” Juli countered softly. “Jas and I'll go get the rental, you two go ahead and get your stuff and meet us out front.”

“Deal,” Rebecca smirked. “Doze two better get a halfway decent car,” she continued once they were gone.

“Stop being a prat,” Elizabeth countered before heading towards the carousel where her luggage was, leaving Rebecca to get her own. Once Rebecca did manage to rescue hers from the sea of other baggage not claimed yet, they headed towards the doors, where Jasmine and Juli were waiting.

“Yooze two got a cute car,” Rebecca grinned when she saw the blue sports car.

“All they had,” Juli offered while Rebecca circled the vehicle, nearly drooling.

“Can I drive?”

“NO!” all three yelled, sharing looks of pure terror.

“What! I'm a good driver!”

“A good race car driver,” Jasmine muttered before walking around and hip bumping Rebecca towards the back seat. “I'm driving; I didn't have a five hour flight.”

“Scootch,” Rebecca grumbled, sending a grin along with her words though to show she didn't mean it in a bad way. Once everyone was in the car she gave a melancholy sigh as Jasmine left the airport behind them.

“I'm afraid to ask,” Elizabeth sighed from in front. “What's got you in a bit of a nark?”

“Robert,” Rebecca sighed once more.

“What about him? I thought you were doing good this time?” Juli frowned.

“He's a putz, that's what,” Rebecca countered. “A scumbag and a half dat one...”

“Oh bother,” Elizabeth muttered, glancing over at Jasmine who was just shaking her head slightly.

“Alright, fess up,” Juli ordered. “What happened this time?”

“He claimed I was just leading him on,” Rebecca huffed. “Me? Lead him on? Dat's the stupidest thing I've ever heard. Den he accused me of having an affair...Me? A skive? Come on...I'm not a Hoowah, not anymore at least...”

“You never were a prostitute by choice Beccs,” Jasmine countered softly.

“And we all know you're not a cheat girl, he's a bloody arsehole, don't let him get to you,” Elizabeth added, turning to look at Rebecca. “In a fortnight he'll be regretting it and realize what a blooming idiot he really is.”

“Really?” Rebecca asked softly.

“Sure'nuff,” Juli agreed. “And remember girlfriend, the Lord never closes one door without opening another one.”

Rebecca chuckled, before taking the tissue Elizabeth had dug out of her purse so she could wipe her eyes. “Okay, we need some music in dis here thing...”

“Yes ma'am,” Jasmine smiled before Elizabeth turned to find a station, they yells of 'no way!' and 'oh God' echoed as she past country stations, hip hop and rap. Finally having enough, she told Rebecca if she wanted something, then go climb in the trunk and find her CDs.

“I can't believe she actually took you up on that,” Jasmine shook her head, keeping an eye out for cops while Juli held on to Rebecca's feet to keep her from disappearing into the trunk entirely, she had dropped the back of her seat down giving her access...

“Bloody woman's out of her mind,” Elizabeth sighed.

“Aha!” Rebecca cried before wiggling her way back into the car. “I have CDs, and you better have a good one for all dat.”

“Sure,” Elizabeth smiled taking the case. “By the way you're hair is all in shambles.”

“What!” Rebecca shrieked and the other three reached up to rub at their temples.

“You just had to mention her hair was all catty whompus,” Juli groaned while Rebecca started digging through her purse for her brush and mirror.

“Oops,” Elizabeth smiled before slipping the soundtrack to RENT into the CD player and turning it up.

“Put it on 23!” Rebecca ordered with a grin before La Vie Boheme began to play and she poked Juli in the side until Juli threw her hands up in the air, meaning she'd sing.

“That's a lie - that's a lie! I had tea the other day!”

“You couldn't pay,” Juli countered with a smirk before Rebecca frowned.

“Oh yeah...”

In the front seat, Elizabeth glanced over at Jasmine once more, both trying to hold back their laughter. Rebecca was the crazy one in their group, the math genius who taught at Cal Tech while working with the state government to research earthquakes. Her goals in life since they were teenagers had been to A) make the next big mathematical discovery, and B) get married. Sadly though, where she was a genius with math, and many other things, she was a complete idiot when it came to men...and so far in 20 years she had managed to have 15 ‘the one’ guys who had left her before it ever got to the point of engagement, and somewhere in the forties...or was it fifties...of guys that never made it to the point she declared him 'the one'. Robert had been the latest one to be deemed 'the one'.

At times though, Elizabeth found it rather ridiculous that Rebecca couldn't get a guy, she was still rather much like a pixie, still barely over five-feet. Her hair she once died with darker highlights, she left to be her natural baby blonde, though she kept it permed nowadays...she really did look like a pixie more often than not, and of the five of them... she was the real beauty... she just couldn't keep a man if her life depended on it...

“Why did old Muffy --” Rebecca began in the back seat.

“Alison,” Jasmine countered.

“Miss the show?” Rebecca added ignoring her.

“There was a death in the family if you must know,” Jasmine sighed.

“Who died?” Elizabeth asked getting into the theme.

“Our akita,” Jasmine explained.

“Evita!” Rebecca, Juli, and Elizabeth snickered before Jasmine reached over to smack Elizabeth's knee.

“What?” Elizabeth asked with a laugh, looking at Jasmine as the two in back continued to sing.

“I can't believe it's the middle of the night and we’re driving down the road singing La Vie Boheme...” Jasmine chuckled. “Oh! My part!” she grinned “Hey Mister - she's my sister,” she spoke in perfect time with the song before Rebecca reached forward to smack her head.

“So thats' five miso soup, four seaweed salad, three soy burger dinner, two tofu platter, and one pasta with meatless balls,” Juli spoke up, stopping Rebecca from hitting Jasmine any more.

“Ugh,” Elizabeth shuddered.

“It tastes the same,” Jasmine countered with a smirk.

“If you close your eyes,” Rebecca agreed.

“And thirteen orders of fries... Is that it here?” Juli asked before all four of them continued, “Wine and beer!”

“Bloody hell, we're all nuts,” Elizabeth laughed while Jasmine turned the car down the street a few blocks from their house.

“You're telling me,” Jasmine chuckled before reaching over to flip off the music.

“Hey!” Rebecca cried. “What'cha do dat for?”

“Cause we're home of course,” Jasmine countered before turning the engine off, while Elizabeth returned her CD to its place.

“Thank God, I gotta pee,” Rebecca sighed.

“So didn't need to know that,” Juli groaned.

“What? Yooze don't got to go with me.”

“Thank the Goddess,” Elizabeth chuckled while opening the door. “Alright, grab your stuff, I'll get mine then go and deactivate the alarm.”

“Dealio,” Rebecca grinned before Juli lightly slapped the back of her head. “What is dis? Pick on Beccs day or something?”

“Something,” Juli smirked before climbing out of the car.

“Save us all,” Jasmine whispered to Elizabeth as she got her stuff from the trunk.

“Save Billy and Sara,” Elizabeth countered with a smile before heading up to the door. Unlocking it she slipped inside long enough to put the code in, then opened the door so everyone could enter.

“Billy boy must be out cold,” Rebecca mused, “Yeah, I'd say he is,” she smirked when they all heard the snoring from upstairs. “Man snores like a freight train.”

“He's got a deviated septum,” Jasmine countered. “Didn't help you beating him up when we were in school...”

“I was asleep,” Rebecca defended herself.

“Only person I know who can be sound asleep, yet still get up, go upstairs, open a door, walk into a room and manage to hit someone just because they're snoring,” Juli chuckled. “Thank God I don't snore...”

“Heck yeah, you'd have hit me back.”

“You know it.”

“Hush,” Elizabeth hissed towards them.

“Hey, don't tell me to hush!” Rebecca countered.

“Don't make me box your ears,” she glared, “Go spend a penny already, before you wake her up.”

“Good point, be right back,” Rebecca spoke before taking off for the bathroom.

“I see you found our missing member,” Juli whispered as she and Jasmine joined Elizabeth. “God, that looks uncomfortable.

“Really,” Jasmine agreed, all three were standing in the doorway to the living room, where Sara was curled up on the loveseat, a few toss pillows under her head, her legs crossed Indian style almost so she fit the length of the seat.

“Probably didn't want to risk waking Billy making the bed and such...” Elizabeth sighed.

“Did she have to flush?” Juli groaned when the sound echoed throughout the house. Even with all the repairs they had done on the house over the twenty years they had it, it was still a house built a hundred years before...it echoed entirely too well.

“Hiya,” Rebecca greeted when she joined them. “Ouch! Hey what was dat for?” she asked rubbing the back of her head.

“For waking me up,” Billy's voice drew their attention to the stairs behind them. “Did I miss some anniversary or something?” he asked with a yawn.

“Not dat I know of...” Rebecca shrugged. “Good morning though Billy boy.”

“You think they might let me off for murder based on temporary insanity as a result of the various holistic treatments I've had?” he asked, leaning up against the wall.

“Hey! You can't kill me, I'm the cute one...”

“The cute and annoying one,” Sara's voice drew their attention back the other way, she was looking over at them from the loveseat, before she reached up to flip the light on.

“Oh! Bright light! Make it stop, make it stop!” Rebecca groaned, covering her eyes.

“Suck it up,” Billy smirked before moving past her and heading into the living room, while the others followed him, he helped Sara up from her awkward position before sitting where her head had been, only for her to lay back down with her head on a pillow in his lap, her legs dangling over the side of the love seat. “So, to what do I owe this unexpected visit?”

“That's a question for her,” Jasmine shrugged, nodding towards Sara.

“Sar?” Billy asked concerned, looking down at her.

“It's nothing,” she began looking back at him, “Alright, alright,” she continued when he had raised an eyebrow skeptically, and various sounds of disbelief echoed from the other four. “You guys know that I've been seeing Gil...”

“Yeah, took the man long enough to realize dat you had a thing for him,” Rebecca agreed. “Wait, what did he do? Can I kill him?”

“Beccs,” Sara groaned.

“What? No one would know it was me...”

“You do realize you just asked a CSI if you can kill someone for her, in front of a lawyer, don't you?” Elizabeth countered.

“Like you would ever turn me in, we're Goombah.”

“She would use the fact we're family against us, wouldn't she?” Elizabeth sighed.

“She would,” Sara agreed with a chuckle, “And no, no killing anyone, Beccs...”

“Alright,” she agreed with a pout. “So, what did he do?”

“I know I'm probably overreacting, let me make that clear...” Sara began with another sigh. “A few months ago we had that case with Heather Kessler, you know...”

“Yeah, the Lady Heather chick who lets men do some of the stuff we all went true as kids,” Rebecca agreed.

“Yeah, but it's entirely legal and there's no sex going on there and everything...” she pointed out, smiling when Rebecca snorted. “I so agree...”

“We all do,” Billy smiled softly. “There was that rumor about her and Grissom, wasn't there?”

“Yeah... and he told me the truth about it as you guys know...”

“And you didn't judge him 'cause you are quite happy keeping your secrets too,” Jasmine nodded.

“Exactly, well the last few weeks he's been hanging up the phone when I come in, and been secretive about some stuff you know...I thought he might be planning something, I can't imagine what but hey...optimistic right...”

“Right,” Juli agreed. “But he wasn't?”

“No, last night I was going to ask him a question and overheard him talking to someone about tomorrow night, which tomorrow night is his night off...and I was suppose to be working...”

“Wait dis call took place before or after midnight?”

“After Beccs...”

“Okay, keep going den.”

“I left, figured I'd come back later, then Greg and I finished the report on our case so I went down to give it to him. Cath was already in there and they were talking, I was going to come back later when I heard him say that Heather was his soul mate...”


“Sorry assed man...”

“Smarmy git...”



Sara chuckled hearing all the different descriptions of Grissom from around the room. “I so needed that...”

“That’s' what we're here for,” Jasmine smiled.

“That's what sent you here though? Why didn't you just confront him?” Billy asked softly.

“Cause I'm pregnant,” she whispered. “I just found out, two months...He doesn't want kids; he's made that very clear in the past and...”

“Straw that broke the camel's back?” Elizabeth offered.

“Exactly...” Sara agreed. “I just don't know what to do anymore...”

“Shh, it's going to be okay girlfriend. We're all here; we're together. You're not going through this alone...”

“Exactly, and as for dat dude...He don't know from nothin. You're gonna have some gorgeous kids and we all get to spoil dem rotten.”

“Elaine's on her way too,” Elizabeth spoke up softly.

“Thanks,” Sara smiled as Billy entwined his fingers with hers, and she slowly dozed off.

Monday September 15th, 1986
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Harvard Campus
10:15 a.m.

“Welcome Freshman!” Sara read from the banner over the main entrance. Looking around she took in the sight of the hundreds of new students making their way across the grounds.

“Does dat really even apply to us?” Rebecca mused.

“Considering half of us are younger than them…” Juli agreed.

“And they’re more carefree than us,” Jasmine softly spoke up.

“In other words, we’re nothing like them. And that isn’t simply because we went to summer semester,” Elizabeth chuckled.

“We’re better than them,” Billy countered, wrapping his arms around Sara’s waist.

“Idiot,” Sara rolled her eyes, simultaneously smacking the wrist against her waist. “Come on guys, let’s leave the newbies to their time with the Dean. We need to get to class; Professor Phillips will kill us if we arrive late and interrupt…”

“Oh shite,” Rebecca’s eyes grew. “Move people…dat woman is scary!”

“This from the girl who grew up in Brooklyn…” Juli teased as they made their way towards the C.L.S. room.

“Stuff it.”

“Cutting it close, weren't ya?” Elaine asked when the door opened to reveal the group they had deemed the six musketeers.

“Sorry Professor,” Sara smiled.

“It's alright,” Elaine waved off their apologies before they made their way to the seats in the front row. They had sat in the same area since that first day, though a bit of rearranging had taken place. Sara was still on the end, Billy behind her. Beside her was Elizabeth, then Jasmine, Juli and Rebecca. They were her best students, her youngest, and her favorites.

It also hadn't taken her long to notice the necklaces that two of them wore...though she had, as of yet, not asked about them. Around Sara's neck was a silver chain, with a pendant that contained a single moonstone, a blue topaz above and an amethyst below. Elizabeth meanwhile had a black cord around her neck, a single amber pendant resting against her collarbone.

Turning her attention from those in the front row, Elaine proceeded to teach the lesson for the day. She listened as each student explained the roots of their parents, a way of making them realize that each culture was important, no matter how...extinct it may seem. Though she was a bit surprised to hear that Sara's mother was English and Scottish, the source of the name Sidle, and her father was Irish, his last name being O'Sianhan. She nearly fell off her desk when she heard Elizabeth's family background, her father being Italian, her mother Irish...her maiden name was Ruane...

After dismissing the class, she watched as everyone quickly made their way from the room, including the 'six'. Reaching up she ran her fingers over her own Agate pendant. She needed to contact her High Priestess...

“I meant ta tell ya, your necklaces are lovely,” Elaine commented when everyone had left after class a few days later, save Elizabeth and Sara who had been packing up their belongings a bit slower.

“Thank you,” Elizabeth smiled, reaching up to touch her pendant.

“They remind me of necklaces I’ve seen before. Come, see.”

Sara and Elizabeth exchanged confused looks before following Elaine to her desk. Elaine opened a large, very old, book; carefully flipping to where one of two ribbon bookmarks rested. On the page, when Elaine turned the book around so the two could see, was a drawing…

“That’s my necklace…” Elizabeth whispered. “Ruane,” she read from the top of the page, a crest below the name. “But how?”

Elaine smiled before flipping to the second ribbon, this one with the name Sidle, below it the family crest, below that, a drawing of Sara’s necklace.

“What is this?” Sara asked softly, reaching down to trace the drawing of her family crest.

“This book is a recording of all the women who are daughters of the Goddess.”

“The Goddess?” Elizabeth and Sara breathed. “You know the Goddess?” Sara continued.

“Aye, and it appears you two are not as ignorant of her as I feared…”

“My mother trained me until I was twelve.”

“When Laura went to prison,” Elaine countered gently.

“How?” Sara backed away, looking between Elaine, Elizabeth and the exit.

“Sara, please… don’t panic,” Elaine began quickly. “I knew your mother as a child, so ta speak. I also knew your mother Elizabeth…”

“How did you know our mothers?” Elizabeth asked softly, stepping back to gently grasp Sara’s hand.

“They were at the Isle when I went to see the High Chieftainess Alexandra be blessed by the Lady. Both of your mothers were there, the last women in their family line. Only a few years later it traveled through the grapevine that first Helen, then Laura had given birth to daughters…then a few years later it also became known, with very few details, that Helen had died, then years later Laura was incarcerated for protecting her family.”

“Everyone knows that…” Sara frowned. “What happened to privacy? To gag orders and such…”

“They exist in the rest of the world little one, but in our world…not all details are known, but when something happens ta one of our own…it tends ta travel ta even the newest of Priestesses, especially when the two Priestesses who are lost ta us, are exceptionally important.”

“What do you mean important?” Elizabeth asked softly.

“Oh little one,” Elaine shook her head. “Your mothers, both of yours…they were foreseen to become Chief Priestesses. Both of your fathers were children of Avalon as well, Marcello was named a Druid when he was nineteen, Seamus never made it past the age of sixteen…he wasn’t blessed. Both of ya, are children of the Yuletide Fires, Elizabeth, ye were born a few weeks early as ye know. When Helen and Laura discovered they were pregnant, they both felt it was the Goddess’ will that they remain with the father’s of their children. But Seamus as you know never did take well to his wife having the gift when he did not…nor his child…” Elaine trailed off.

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