The Second Coming

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Once the tremors stopped, Rastlin, Olbane and Spicer picked themselves up from the ground, and each man marvelled that he was in one piece. Olbane immediately sprinted down the foyer, and was closely followed by Spicer. Rastlin remained outside, with a neutral expression on his face.

Whatever had happened upstairs had caused quite a commotion: there was a lot of noise, followed by what felt like an earthquake and extremely high winds. Olbane ran up the stairs, ignored the small study and sprinted down the corridor, through the dining room to a scene of chaos. Within the small room four old men were crumpled against the wall. Another was lying under the table. Sat at the table was a young woman in white, with shoulder length brown hair. She was apparently in a trance. Lying on the floor was another young woman, who was blonde.

Instinctively Olbane ran to Carly, and ignored Spicer’s cry of grief as he ran to the other side of the room. “Carly?” The Priestess did not respond, so he put an arm around her, and gently shook her. “Carly?”

Carly turned her head and looked at him; she had tears running down her cheeks. “It is over, Olbane. The Church as we know it is no more.”

Olbane bowed his head. “Then Lia and her friend succeeded.”

Carly smiled softly. “Yes, but not in the way they thought. They have shown there is more to Him than we thought.”

“I do not understand. What do you mean?”

He is not Revan, but The One. Revan is an ancient name, chosen by the Circle when they found the connection to Him. The One is everything, and I mean everything.” Her voice almost sang.

Olbane looked at her, mouth agape. “That is blasphemy!”

Carly raised a hand and touched his cheek. “Not any more, Olbane. What we believed was a well constructed faith based on what The Circle wanted. Lia destroyed The Circle and now we are free to find a new faith with no barriers between us and The One.”

At mention of Lia’s name Olbane turned around. Spicer was cradling Lia’s still form against him, and was rocking her slowly. He had tears running down his weathered face. Olbane stepped forward. “Is she...?”

Carly was by Spicer’s side before he could respond. She placed her hands on each side of Lia’s face, closed her eyes and muttered a prayer: it was the first prayer in The One’s name. Moments later Lia’s chest started to rise.

Spicer looked at Carly with an incredulous expression on his face. “Did you bring her back from the dead?”

Carly shook her head. “Even The One could not have done that, Warnock. Lia was very close to death, but now she is stable. We should take her somewhere more comfortable.”


Lia awoke feeling weak but surprisingly alive. She opened her eyes gently, looked around the sparsely furnished room, and focused on the woman in white who was sat at her bedside. Lia smiled. “Hello.”

The woman smiled, bent down and embraced her friend. “I wondered when you would finally wake. You have exceeded even your reputation for sleeping.”

Lia grimaced and tried to sit up, but needed Carly’s help to do so. She grinned. “I think I earned it, don’t you?”

Carly beamed a smile back at her friend. “That you did, my dear Lia.”

Lia took a closer look at the room. “Where am I? How long have I been asleep?”

The Boar’s Head, Frodsby. We brought you here once it was all over. You slept for three days.”

Lia raised an eyebrow, and recalled the last moments of the conflict. “What happened? Why did you let me through to The Circle?”

“I saw what The One wanted me to see. Once I had seen that, I realised The Circle had run its course and needed to end. A moment later it was over.”

Lia looked confused. “The One?”

Carly nodded. “Revan is not the true name of our God. The One needs no such title.”

Lia’s eyes filled with sadness. “I am sorry, Carly. I have destroyed the Church of Revan.”

Carly held her friend’s hand. “On the contrary, Lia. What you have done is change the focus of the church. Priestesses can still connect with The One, but now it is un-moderated, uncontrolled. Those who rode out here immediately afterwards have already told me of the joy surrounding the Priesthood. The One is talking to us all personally, and it is a joyous feeling.”

Lia smiled. “Rastlin was right then, to a degree.”

“Only slightly. Your friend is an interesting person and I have talked long with him in the last days. He meant to free the church of Revan’s stranglehold on freedom and other religions, but he didn’t expect this to happen. There is only One God, Lia, and Rastlin didn’t bargain for that. While he is pleased the church of Revan has changed, he is not delighted he was a mere pawn to creating something even more powerful.”

Was he a pawn? Am I a pawn?”

“We are all pawns, Lia. I mentioned the prophecies I read in Surian to him, and he told me what you found in Areza. The prophecy appears to have had some bearing on what happened.”

Lia looked at Carly intently. “The prophecy spoke of restoring balance.”

“Now that The Circle cannot control the church, the world is more balanced. Other nations will now be explored, and the word will be spread. The Priesthood will grow, and The One’s love will propagate.”

Lia couldn’t help but grin. “That doesn’t sound balanced to me. It sounds more like world domination.”

Carly chuckled. “Well, we won’t force anyone to follow, but I find it hard to believe they won’t. Being with The One is an unbelievable experience.” Her whole face seemed to glow.

Lia pushed herself up. “What of my power? How does that fit into the great new plan?”

“To be honest I do not know. I have also discussed this with Rastlin, and it appears your power comes from the natural elements of the world, rather than any divine being. Part of me suspects you are actually connecting with Him when you draw on power, but that doesn’t explain what happened around the triangle three days ago.”

Lia looked confused again. “What do you mean?”

“The prophecy spoke of the resources you would need to complete your task.”

Lia nodded. “The power from the forest and water was unbelievable.”

“A significant portion of the Great Forest burned to the ground; Lake Moor has lost nearly half of the water within. I believe you drew on so much power to defend yourself and then destroy The Circle that even those great forces of nature couldn’t cope.”

Lia’s eyes grew wide and she started shaking. Carly moved closer and put her arms around her friend. “We can re-populate the forest, and the lake will be back to its former glory in time.” Carly squeezed Lia’s shoulders. “As will you.”

Lia looked up. “Will I? I am a red-eyed freak who destroyed a forest and lake, not to mention an entire religion! My parents are dead, as is the man who loved me. I have also killed numerous people along the way.”

Carly shuffled back to ensure she had sufficient eye contact. “Without you, The One would still be hidden; to me nothing else matters. Rejoice that those you killed are with The One, as are your parents and Michael. You were meant to put an end to The Circle; you are The Second Coming, whatever that means.”

Lia opened her mouth but Carly held up a hand.

“Life will not be the same again for you, but you must look forward. I give you my word you will have whatever the resources the church has to discover more about your power, but it is important you focus on the future. The prophecy appears to be complete, and you are free of whatever was guiding you.” Carly smiled warmly. “I for one see the future for you as being very bright. You were always a free spirit, Lia. Go out there and do whatever you need to do and follow your own path.”

Lia smiled. “I believe I will, my dear friend. I might go to The Great Forest and see what I can do to help.” Lia hugged her friend. “Will you return to Crossmoor?”

Carly shook her head. “When I was in The Circle, The One showed me what I must do. The rest of the world needs The One, and it is my mission to make sure the message spreads.”

Lia smiled. “Well, good luck with that. It won’t be easy.”

Carly grinned. “Well, it wouldn’t be any fun if it was, would it?”

-- The End --

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