Aurora Meets Kendall
Aurora sighed. She had done it again. She had sworn to Chloe that she was home to stay, that she was always going to be there this time, and that nothing was ever going to take her away. She had made a similar promise many years ago, when she had first left for Zandar. Chloe had been too young at the time to understand what was happening, but Aurora had promised Chase that she would come home every Christmas. She had kept the secret for four years, and had broken it when she became aware that she was needed in Zandar in case Jenni needed her.
Now, after returning home from Zandar after six years of being away, Aurora had promised her younger sister that, no matter what happened, she would always be there when she woke up, when she came home from school, and when she went to sleep at night. But something had changed, and it was Aurora's own stupid fault.
Aurora had been approached by an American woman by the name of Kendall Morgan. Kendall had explained that she worked for a Dinosaur museum in Amber Beach, California. But that wasn't all she did. She was also a part of a small mission, searching the earth for crystals known as Energems. The Energems gave out a signal of when bonded to a human host, and Kendall had managed to pick up two signals in New Zealand. At first she had thought it had been a glitch, there was no way that two energems could've been in such close proximity to one another, but the glitch and proven to be true and she had managed to somehow find both the crimson and black energems.
So the crystal she had bought whilst shopping in Zandar with Alexis was called an energem. It was a crystal from an alien planet somewhere deep in space, and it held unknown powers.
No wonder it was affecting my seizures, Aurora thought, staring at the crimson rock in her hand. Kendall had explained in great depth what the crystal did, and that it was connected to that of the Giganotosaurus dinosaur from sixty-five-million-years-ago. But even thought she had found the story strange, Aurora couldn't find it within herself to doubt Kendall's knowledge. The woman may have sounded crazy, and if Aurora hadn't have been affected more since purchasing the crystal, she may not have believed her, but her seizures had gotten worse since coming into possession of the energem.
"The power must be interrupting the neurological signals in your brain," Kendall explained. "When the energems bond with a human host, it sends a spark of power to the brain. Keeper isn't completely understanding of the human brain, and therefore we didn't take into consideration anyone with a disability finding the gems."
"I'm not disabled," Aurora said hotly.
Kendall floundered for a way to cover her mistake, but Aurora shook her head and looked back at her gem. She and Kendall were sitting in a small cafe overlooking a play park where Chloe and Jenni were playing. Aurora had chosen it as a place where she and Kendall could talk about the situation at hand.
"This is the second time you mentioned a 'Keeper'," Aurora said. "Who is he?"
"Keeper is the guardian of the energems," Kendall said. "He crashed to Earth sixty-five-million-years-ago after being hunted by the intergalactic bounty hunter named Sledge."
"You do realise how all this sounds, right?"
Kendall nodded and looked down at her coffee. "Yes, I am, but it's true," she said. "I was recruited to help Keeper after he found me many years ago. We've been searching for energems ever since, with the gems bonded to an array of dinosaurs, it is impossible to find them unless they are bonded to a human host. We got lucky with you."
"You say there is another signal here in New Zealand?" Aurora asked.
"Yes, the black energem has also bonded to someone," Kendall said. She checked her laptop computer, using it to search the surrounding area for any energy signatures. "According to this, it's not far from here. It's stationary for now."
Aurora frowned and shuffled around the table to see the screen. She leaned forward and pointed at the black blimp. "Can you zoom in?" she asked. "Maybe I'll recognise the street name or something?"
"OK," Kendall said, doing as Aurora asked. She zoomed in several times before the street name was readable on Google Maps. "Rae - rere -"
"Rerewai Place," Aurora said. "It's a side street that leads to a New Zealand Maori seller named Wanda. She's a little freaky, but harmless nonetheless."
"Can you show me?" Kendall asked.
Aurora looked out at Jenni and Chloe. She didn't really want to take the two girls' to Rerewai Place, but she could always wait in the car while Kendall went to retrieve the black energem.
"Uh - Sure," Aurora agreed, figuring it would also give her a chance to explain things to Chloe. Even though she knew, and understood that Chloe was not going to be particularly happy with the sudden turn of events.
Kendall smiled and started to pack away her belongings. The sooner she found and retrieved the black energem, the sooner she could return to Amber Beach. She hated being away from the museum for longer than she at too, especially since it was her museum, and closing it for trips around to world was bad for business. But the energems were important. If they were to fall into the wrong hands then closing the museum for a few days wouldn't matter, as there would be no museum to close.
"Ready?" Kendall asked after stowing her laptop back into its bag.
Aurora nodded, set a few notes on the table under her empty cup, and then stood up.