THE UNCONFINED CHILDREN AND THE LITTLE GLASS RING

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Chapter 1

After Leven, Iknow, Nissa, and Chacha returned from their adventure on the dusty world of the Smudge and just barely survived it, there was not much interest from any of the siblings to go exploring new planets. Even though they had successfully defeated the Smudge from the dust planet with the aid of the magical powers that they had gotten from the silver “remote” they had found in the attic, none of them wanted to ever repeat the terror they had gone through fighting for their survival.

Then there was the matter of the little glass ring. Leven had never revealed to the others the tiny, glass ring that he had found in the satin sack that contained the silver ‘remote’. This was odd because the siblings had always shared things that cool, but he just couldn’t let the others know and he didn’t know why. But he never forgot about it either. In fact, he would wait until none of his siblings were around to take it out to look at it. Sometimes it didn’t seem that special. It was just a little glass ring that appeared to be hollow inside. However, it wasn’t empty. When Leven first looked at it, he was astonished to see what looked like a bright blue sky with tiny cirrus-shaped clouds floating through it. At first, he was captivated by the sight and almost couldn’t put it down. But then the four children had gotten themselves into a mess after unwittingly bringing the Smudge from the dust planet into their own world. Escaping the Smudge from the dust planet seemed to be a tad more important than looking at a little glass ring. He also rationalized what he had seen as some kind of trick, like a snow globe or something equally mundane.

Then, after the Smudge was defeated by Chacha, life again became rather normal and quotidian. Aside from their normal day to day lives with chores and ‘school’, the kids enjoyed their new powers. Nissa continued to work on the fine points of flying so that she could make sharp turns and even fly upside down. She also worked to strengthen the power-web she could leave behind her while flying, although it was only marginally important in the fight against the Smudge. Now, she wanted to grow it into an actual barrier against harmful forces. Iknow explored how having certain knowledge of the near future made him feel. He was a little skeptical of this power, but was more easily able to accept it when he saw his sister flying through the air and remembered how Chacha had defeated the Smudge by yelling at it. Leven seemed to have increased his power over the hole through space that he grew on his back. He was able to grow it faster and even began to be able to preview exactly where stepping through it would take the four siblings without going to the destination first. In addition, he had begun to wonder if he could grow the Spot in a different location than on his back. He didn’t like the fact that he was vulnerable while he was growing the Spot until he was able to detach it from his back.

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