Threefold

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Chapter 2

The Labyrinth bar wasn’t that busy but it was only a Tuesday night so Laurie wasn’t too bothered. She’d only run the bar for less than a year, having inherited it from her uncle when he and her cousin died.
As she turned to serve the latest customer Laurie stared in amazement at the man standing on the other side of the bar.
“Logan?”
Laurie stared at her friend who she knew was meant to be in a wheelchair, “Logan, how?”
Logan shrugged, “The doctor says the swelling has gone and I can walk.”
Laurie moved out from behind the bar and hugged him tightly, she then moved him to one of the booths in the back. Waving over to Sam the barman to get them the usual drinks Laurie turned to her friend. She was in shock at seeing him stroll into the bar as though nothing had happened to him, she’d spent weeks listening to him and comforting him when they realised it was possible he would never walk again.
Laurie and Logan had known each other since University. Laurie had been dating his room-mate Max and they’d become friends at the same time. When Laurie and Max broke up Logan remained friends with her rather than him.
She’d been with him through his many girlfriends, sometimes Laurie was the reason that the girlfriend would be dumped as most of the women Logan dated didn’t like how close they were.
Laurie always found this extremely funny as she saw Logan more as a little brother, who was three months older than she was, than anything else.
“It’s strange, Laurie,” Logan sighed bringing her attention back to the present, “I don’t remember anything about yesterday. I seem to have lost a day and all of a sudden I can walk again. It doesn’t make sense.”
“Honestly, I’m taking this as a blessing,” Laurie told him, “I thought I was dreaming when I watched you walk over here.”
Logan sighed and leaned back against the seat, “I just want to know what’s going on.”
Laurie reached out and squeezed his hand, “We’ll work it out.”

Arianna looked around the bar as they entered it. She didn’t drink much, apprentices had to study almost every night to be elevated and as an apprentice longer than most she’d spent far too many nights at her house going over spell-book after spell-book until she could recite them. Davin moved her to a table in the corner, which she liked; she wanted to study the people here as she hadn’t had much time to interact with the people of this world.
As she looked around the room Arianna frowned as she recognised the man sitting at the table in the corner of the room with a woman, she seemed to be comforting him and Arianna suddenly saw the lack of wheelchair anywhere in the room.
“It could be hidden away,” she murmured hopefully.
“What?” Davin asked as he returned with their drinks.
“I think we might have a problem,” Arianna told him softly, “Do you see the man in the booth over there? He’s with the woman with dark brown hair I would love to have.”
Davin slowly turned as though moving his seat and saw the people she was pointing out, “Laurie?”
“You know her?”
“She owns this place,” Davin explained, “What about the guy she’s talking to?”
Arianna frowned, “I had to blank his memory yesterday.”
Davin turned to look at the man again, “You said he was paralysed?”
“He was,” Arianna replied, “I think the stone healed him.”
Davin dropped into his seat, “Then that’s a major problem.”
“I blanked his memory, Davin,” Arianna rubbed the bridge of her nose, “But if he sees me and with his new-found ability to walk again, it will break the spell.”
“Then I think you need to leave,” Davin told her, “Get back to the flat and I’ll go have a chat to my friend Laurie. I’ll see if I can pick anything up.”
Arianna nodded and started out of the room, but as she turned to check on Davin her eyes locked with the man she was trying to avoid.

Logan watched Laurie as she quickly sorted out a problem with the bar wondering what to do now. She took her seat again and they continued to talk, interrupted suddenly by a man who greeted Laurie as an old friend.
“Logan,” Laurie turned to him, “This is Davin. He owns the rare bookstore just down the road.”
“Nice to meet you,” Logan nodded politely, as he shook the other man’s hand he saw her again. He didn’t know why he was thinking again because he knew he didn’t know her but there was something about her that just sparked a familiarity.
“Laurie, I’ll be back,” he told his friend ignoring the other man who tried to stop him.
Without thinking Logan headed out the bar and looked around, he spotted a woman along the road with similar hair style to the woman he was looking for so chose that direction. Jogging along Logan became aware of several men coming towards him.
“It worked on him,” one of them said as the men advanced towards Logan.
“Sorry, guys but I think you have the wrong person,” Logan held his hands up trying to work out how to get out of this.
The one who looked like the leader held up a strange golden baton with a blue jewel on the end of it that was glowing.
“The boss will want him since we can’t find the woman,” the leader said before turning to Logan, “Move or we move you.”
As Logan was about to try and run he was grabbed from behind.
“Oh come on,” a woman’s voice came, “You guys again? Don’t you have something else to do?”
Logan turned and saw her standing, “Arianna?” her name along with the events of the previous day flooded back.
The woman smiled at him, “Looks like you remember yesterday. That can’t be helped,” she turned to the man holding the strange baton thing, “So, who do you work for?”
“I’m not telling you,” the leader of the gang growled.
“Never mind,” Arianna replied her smile never wavering, she waved her hand and Logan gaped as he watched a plank appear from nowhere and smack the man across the head. Arianna ducked the others who started after her before Logan would swear he saw light explode from her hands and throw them back.
“Come on,” Arianna grabbed his arm; she stopped briefly to pick up the baton thing that the men had been using before pulling him.

Arianna pulled her new friend into the shop and after slamming the door closed placed a barrier across the opening before she sighed in relief. Turning she saw him staring at her looking confused and angry.
“What’s going on?” he demanded.
“That might take a good bit of explaining,” Arianna said, “Let’s start with your name, you know mine so I think I should at least know yours.”
“Logan,” he ground out, “Logan Matthews.”
“Arianna Skylar,” she introduced herself properly before pulling out a seat and sitting down, “I’m guessing that the walking is something you didn’t expect.”
“Enough clever comments,” Logan snapped, “I want to know who the hell you are and what the hell has been happening.”
“Alright,” Arianna said, “Magic.”
“If you’re not going to give me a serious answer...”
“You’ll what?” she challenged, “You’ll go out and go with the guys I just rescued you from? Be serious, Logan.”
“I’m not the one spouting off that magic is involved.”
Arianna shook her head; opening her hand she gently levitated a book from the corner to her hand. Logan stared in amazement before he stood and checked for wires or any tricks.
“How did you do that?”
“I already told you,” Arianna chuckled, “Magic.”
“There is no such thing as magic,” Logan replied.
“How do you explain what I just did? How do you explain the fact I threw those guys away without touching any of them?” she stared into his eyes, her green ones glinting, “How do you explain your sudden ability to walk again?”
“The doctor said the swelling went down,” Logan retorted, “I healed naturally.”
Arianna laughed, “You wish. The blue stone that your friend put on your back yesterday, which I’m sure you remember now, that is what healed you. It took time to take effect as it wasn’t wielded by someone who knew what they were doing. To be honest I didn’t think it would actually do anything.”
Logan shook his head, “That’s impossible, it’s impossible and I...”
“Are you finished?”
“Magic isn’t real,” Logan told her firmly.
Arianna laughed again she leaned forward so they were eye to eye, “Do you really believe that?”



Davin felt the protection spell the moment he entered the shop, it was a good thing Arianna was smart enough to remember to give him a pass through it – he didn’t want to think how much that would have hurt otherwise.
“Arianna?” he called to warn her in case she was doing something that could be dangerous.
“We’re in here,” she called back.
Davin frowned; the ‘we’ did not bode well. As he moved further in he grimaced as he saw Logan sitting across from Arianna, they were both looking ready to fight and Davin hated that he was going to have to referee.
“Does one of you want to explain what’s going on?” Davin asked pulling a chair over to the table.
“Logan doesn’t believe in magic,” Arianna gave him one of those annoying grins she always used when she was trying to get her way.
Davin turned on her, “And he knows about this why?”
“He was in a wheelchair when I met him yesterday,” Arianna cut Logan off before he could say anything, “He’s witnessed me do several spells already and he was traced by this.”
Davin caught the baton with the blue jewel on the end that she tossed at him.
“This is not good,” Davin grimaced, “If these items are able to be used again then the magic leaking into the world is more powerful than we thought.”
“What are you two talking about?” Logan demanded, “Magic isn’t real.”
“How many times are you going to say that despite the evidence?” Arianna demanded of him, “Logan, you’ve seen it several times already.”
Logan dropped his head into his hands and Davin wondered what was going through the younger man’s mind.
“Logan, I wish we could erase this from you again,” Davin told him making him look up at them, “But the spell Arianna used can only be done once.”
“Why don’t you do it?”
Davin sighed, “Because I can’t. I don’t have the abilities Arianna does. Especially not here.”
Logan stood and paced for a few seconds as Davin shared a worried look with Arianna. Finally he sat down again, “I want you to actually explain properly. Stop giving me cryptic remarks and explain.”

“The quick version,” Arianna started as Davin set a coffee in front of her and Logan before taking his own seat, “A long time ago magic existed freely in this world. However a time came when those who practiced magic were hunted and killed - persecuted as new religions came to the world. At that time the most powerful sorcerer that has ever existed decided that the only way to protect the ways and the history of those who were magical was to create a place where magical practitioners as well as magical creatures could exist in peace.”
Logan frowned but said nothing letting Arianna continue.
“Using the most incredible magic that has ever been done he moved everything magical through a rift to an alternate version of the world,” Arianna continued passionately, she loved this story so much, “Within that world magic blossomed but there are always people who broke laws and many of these were banished here where this is very little magic. They were sent through via a small rift between the two worlds which is located beneath this shop.”
“This shop?” Logan repeated a little dumbly.
Arianna nodded, “Now, the reason I’m here. About a month ago three special stones were stolen and brought to Earth somehow. I’ve been sent to retrieve all three and discover who is responsible for the theft.”
“That blue stone Clara used on me,” Logan guessed.
Arianna nodded, “Exactly. The fact that the stone healed you shows that there is magic leaking in through a second rift, the one that was used to bring the stones here which is why more and more magic is able to be used.”
“Okay,” Logan said slowly, “That makes some sense. So you’re kind of like a cop?”
“I’m a Peacekeeper,” Arianna smiled, “Davin used to be one as well; he’s a Sentry now looking after the rift.”
“Why can’t he do the same things you can?”
“I’m not the same kind of sorcerer as Arianna,” Davin told him, not too happy that they were telling this man everything but it was Arianna’s decision.
Logan shook his head, “This is too much.”
“I can understand that,” Arianna said, “But you need to know this. Logan because the blue stone was used on you they can trace you. If these people find you there’s no knowing what they’ll do because we don’t know what they want.”
The fear Logan felt flashed in his eyes and reminded Davin and Arianna that they had to remember that it wasn’t just them involved now.
“Okay,” Logan said taking a deep breath to centre himself, “If I’m in danger what’s your plan?”
Arianna glanced at Davin, “Plan isn’t exactly the word I’d use.”
Logan raised an eyebrow at her.
“Arianna,” Davin scolded.
She rolled her eyes at him before turning to the man sitting across from her, “Logan, you have to understand that this is something I’ve never had to deal with before. I’m usually part of a larger team and not the one making the decisions.”
“That makes me feel so much safer,” Logan murmured under his breath.
Arianna glared at him, “However,” she continued, “I’m going to create a spell that will hide you from detection. I can only actually do it to your house and you’ll have to stay there.”
“For how long?”
Arianna shrugged, “Until this is over.”
“Well that’s helpful,” Logan retorted, “So, I just have to hide in my apartment until this is over? How long will that be?”
Arianna shrugged again.
“Fantastic.”

Logan opened the door to his apartment allowing Arianna inside.
“This is nice,” she noted as she walked in, “Beautiful view of the river.”
Logan nodded, “Yeah, I love it. One of the reasons I refuse to leave and go home.”
“Where’s home?” Arianna turned to him.
“Los Angeles,” Logan replied, “My parents still live there, though not together. I moved to Glasgow to study and stayed.”
“I don’t think I could leave my home for good,” she murmured before smacking her hands together, “Let’s do this.”
Logan nodded, “What do I do?”
“Sit down and keep quiet,” she told him, ignoring the hard glare thrown at her, “That’s all I need. This is a pretty easy spell.”
“Spells,” Logan murmured, shaking his head, “This is just too weird.”
Arianna closed her eyes and murmured a few words that Logan couldn’t hear before a soft glow began to form around her. Suddenly the light exploded out and enveloped the room before fading to nothing.
“You’re safe,” Arianna told him before adding with a slight smirk, “As long as you do as you’ve been told and stay here.”


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