Phoenix Feathers: Curator of the Dragon Gate

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Day in the Sun

Don’t tear down a fence without knowing why it was built.

Derrick couldn’t believe it when I told him the date. The Bondell’s failed to notice that Tyrone wasn’t himself. Derrick had suggested that he needed a walk to help clear his head. I decided to follow him to make sure that he wouldn’t go running off who knows where.

“Why are you following me?”

“I don’t want you to get away.”

“And just where would I run off to!”

“I don’t know and that’s why I’m following you.”

“It’s been half a century since I died. Even if I knew where I was, everything from my time is long gone by now,” Tyrone’s body stopped walking only a few yards away from the house, “Well, almost everything.”

Derrick made Tyrone’s arms spread out as he fell back onto the soft ground.

“Sorry I’m late,” Seraphina practically skipped as she finally made it to the main hall.

“I’m not surprised, Seraphina. You’ve been doing this for months,” Seraphina’s second eldest sister, Fiona, giggled.

“Were you out with those servants again,” Derrick snorted, he didn’t need an answer, “of course, you were.”

“Well, Daddy hasn’t been able to take me anywhere as of late.”

“You know Seraphina, rumors are spreading,” the second eldest whispered, “You’re not helping our good name by ‘hanging out’ with commoners.”

“Well, we can’t possibly fix it by staying cooped up in here like some pudgy pigeons in a cage,” the youngest yelled.

“See, you’re even starting to act like…”

“Like what,” Seraphina glared at her elder brother daring him to finish the sentence. Of which, Derrick did not, “So do you know what daddy wanted to talk to us about?”

“For once, no,” Derrick admitted.

“What about you, Caroline?”

“As if I care…,” the eldest of the siblings huffed.

“Caroline, you’re so mean,” the youngest laughed.

“You can’t blame her,” the second son, Patrick, shrugged, “Father’s been on edge as of late.”

“I’m sure that it will just pass,” Derrick shook it off, “After all, father is nothing like Grandfather was.”

“I don’t know,” Caroline shuttered, “I have a bad feeling about today.”

“Oh, God! I haven’t seen the sun in fifty years,” Derrick sighed, “If only I could die right now.”

“Be careful with Tyrone,” I warned him.

“Can’t you let me bask in the sun in peace,” Derrick groaned, “It’s hard enough with this tail of your friend’s stabbing me in his rear end.”

“Yeah, there’s a perfectly logical explanation for that,” I laughed nervously.

“I assume that you used the Kimon on this body’s owner,” he sighed, tugging at the coat that was tied around his waist, “do you mind if I let it out? Its circulation has been cut off apparently for half an hour.”

“How do you know about the Kimon?”

“I know everything your Uncle knows,” Derrick shivered, “Even if I don’t understand all of it.”


“It’s a side effect of a horrific technique that your Uncle has been using for generations,” Derrick absentmindedly scratched the side of his face again, “Please, don’t make me explain it.”

“Is it the same ‘technique’ that you’re using on Tyrone right now?”

I had to take his silence as his answer.

“Does it hurt him?”

“No, but he’ll want to have a hot bath when I let him go.”

Not far away, a beast loomed in the woods. His eyes looked menacingly at the couple sitting on the hill nearby. He didn’t care to fight either one of them, but he was more than willing.

He sniffed the air and caught wind of their scents.

“(He’s there…),” he growled, “(Now how to separate them and so I can destroy him…?)”

“Why didn’t you expose me?”

“Because then you’d expose me, Kitsune.”

“What’s the worst that could happen?”

“Back when I was alive, we tied possessed people to chairs until a psychic or priest could purify the body,” Derrick sighed, still enjoying the sunlight, “Tyrone would be trapped inside for weeks waiting for someone to come over the mountains. And I wouldn’t be enjoying this sunlight right now.”

“You know mankind’s also advanced in the years you were ‘dormant’.”

“But your mother’s Barrier Seal is still there.”

“My mother’s what now?”

“I’m surprised you don’t know about the Barrier. It prevents powerful minds from coming in or-,” Derrick clasped his mouth, “oh I shouldn’t be telling you about such things.”

“But it doesn’t make any sense… Who would seal my mother away?”

“You misunderstand, Jade,” Derrick laughed, “Your mother is the one who made the Barrier Seal a couple of centuries ago.”

“Why would my mother…?”

“I just want to enjoy my time out here,” Derrick brought Tyrone’s legs to his chest, “Please let me have some peace while I have control: no worries, no stinking cigarettes, and no cold.”

“Tyrone, Jade,” Sarah called from the back porch, “Would you two like some homemade ice cream?”

“On second thought,” Tyrone’s ears perked up, “I could go for some ice cream.”

“Me too,” I smiled as Derrick stood Tyrone up, “Aren’t you forgetting something?”

“And I was just getting comfortable too…," he whined, tying the tail under the jacket.

The beast decided to just charge at them and grab what he wanted. The humans stood when that woman inside called them. It didn’t matter what she said, he was going to-


The creature stopped at the edge of the trees and stayed in the shadows. He couldn’t believe his eyes. He must be seeing things. But no… The human had a tail. Humans aren’t supposed to have tails.

“Um… aren’t you forgetting something?”

“Awe, and I was just getting comfortable," the male whined like an Inukami as he bound the tail under his clothing.

The voice was familiar. And this scent, it was unmistakably an Inukami’s scent. Not just any Inukami either. It was that Inukami from before. The beast had thought before that the human had the Inukami on him, but now he knew instead the Inukami and this human were one and the same.

This explained so much to the beast, but only served to amplify his rage. He just continued to watch the two of them.

“So, if you know everything my Uncle does, do you know why I can’t get rid of that tail?”

“All I know is that the Phoenix Gate is able to create life,” Derrick explained, “and it’s able to alter what has already been created.”

“But not that stupid tail?”

“The Phoenix Gate can’t destroy,” Derrick shrugged, “It’s only power is to create.”

“I still don’t get it. I’ve tried a hundred times to-”

Derrick opened the door for me, “Ladies first.”

“You just opened the door so that our conversation can stop didn’t you?”

“No, but it’s a nice bonus,” Derrick smiled, “Either way, I want ice cream, so can we go inside now?”

The Beast watched the pair of humans entered the dwelling again. He had lost his chance to get them… for now. He decided to wait until nightfall. Then he’d get that human or Inukami or whatever he was. But until then he’d have to search the house for a way inside without being noticed.

“Slow down Tyrone,” I jabbed Derrick in the side, “You’re going to give yourself brain freeze.”

“More please,” Derrick and Lou shouted together.

“Oh Inari…,” I sighed and snuck in a question, “How old are you?"

“Thirty-t, um thirteen,” Derrick nearly gave himself away, “Seriously this Ice cream is almost as good as… as…”

Derrick paused for a short moment, then he just stared at Sarah, “Hey, Grandma, what was your first name again?”

“I’m just your Granma, honey.”

“I know, I just can’t remember what your name is.”

“Her name’s Miss Sarah,” Lou pointed out.

“No Louie, I’m not ‘Miss’ anything. I’m just Sarah. Say-Rah.”

We were running… I had no idea what was going on.

I remember Father ordered Nidhogg to kill us all. He couldn’t have been serious. Even Nidhogg knew that, but Father did something. Nidhogg then leaped down the stairs, crashing just in front of us.

It glowed with a deep green color, fully prepared to attack. Great vines crashed out of the floor and overtook Fiona first. Everyone only watched and stared as the vines took her into itself. And then Patrick tried to dig into the root to save our sister, but was taken in as well.

Time warped. I can’t remember… what was I doing?

“Seraphina, look out,” I pushed my sister out of the way as another vine broke from under her feet, “Gah!”

“Derrick,” Bonny caught her.

“George, take my sister and run!”

“Derrick! No,” Seraphina yelled.

“Just run! That’s an order,” I yelled as my body was being absorbed into the vines, “Do your duty!”

“Derrick, I promise, I’ll protect her.”

“You better! Just Go!”

“Sera…,” Derrick smiled, “cute…”

“Why are you smiling?”

“No reason,” Derrick sighed.

“Tyrone, can I speak with you for a minute,” Bonny rolled his way into the dining room, “Alone…”

“Sure Grandad,” Derrick stood up and followed Bonny to the other room.

“Hold it,” Bonny stopped, “Do you have Leo on you?”

“Leo? Um, I uh,” Derrick looked at me, “Do I…?”

“Don’t tell me you’re still confused,” I laughed getting up to tap Leo’s bell, “Leo’s is on your belt.”

“Thank you,” Derrick laughed nervously, taking the orb off his belt.

“Good, follow me,” Bonny said as he wheeled away, Derrick behind him.

“What’s that about,” I asked Sarah as she came back with Louis 3rd helping of ice cream.

“It’s a family matter,” Sarah explained as she put another bowl down for Louis, “It’s best if we keep our noses out of it.”

“You mean you don’t know either?”

“I mean, I’ll respect his privacy. And I expect you to do the same.”

Bonny shut the door behind them as they entered the library. Although the selection of books in the room was not as massive as most Libraries, the room was built and designed specifically to keep noise out. Therefore, could also keep the noise in. Bonny led who he thought was Tyrone to a relatively small chest that sat on one of the bookshelves.

“Do you remember what I told you about the Crazy Plant Mansion, Tyrone?”

“Crazy Plant… I think so Grandad,” Derrick rubbed Tyrone’s head, “But my memory seems to be in a haze.”

“Do you remember what I told you outside of the official report?”

“No, I don’t remember, Grandad,” Derrick pretended to not remember what he didn’t already know, “Can we talk about this after my head is cleared up?”

“It can’t wait, Tyrone. Not now that I know that John is dead,” Bonny almost growled himself as he used the ring on his finger as a key for the lock, “Not now that the Lawrence bloodline has ended.”

“Maybe I shouldn’t be here,” Derrick could feel Tyrone’s tail slip between his legs. Derrick himself continued to scratch at his cheek.

“Fifty years ago, we lied to the police to keep your grandmother safe,” Bonny laughed for a moment, “Of course, they might not have believed the real story. Even Gary thought that I was going senile when I finally told him the truth.”

“The truth?”

The beast outside thought wildly. There was no way inside. Or at least without being detected. He had to break in himself through one of the windows to get what he wanted. If he did it at night then everyone would know that he was there. But if he did it now then he’d catch them by surprise. His sense of revenge was overpowering his basic instincts for survival. He made a running start and leaped high.

He crashed through one of the windows in the kitchen area.

The women inside screamed, but their calls couldn’t be heard.

“Your Grandmother, Sarah’s real name is Seraphina Esmerelda Fabulist. She was the last of the great Fabulist family,” Bonny said as he just rubbed the lid on the box he held, “Whereas we are part of a different kind of family.”

“What are you talking about,” Derrick asked… pretending he didn’t know already as much as he already did.

“We are the last of the Bondells, a servant family bound by blood to serve others,” Bonny sighed, “I was sent to the Fabulist residence, but not to serve them, but rather to protect my Aniki. I didn’t mean to fall in love with Sera, I just… did.”

“How could you,” Derrick found himself glaring at the cripple.
He had just realized just who this ‘Tyrone’ was.
His sister and Bondell were Tyrone’s direct grandparents.

“Charlotte gave me this,” Bonny took out a bracelet, “With it, I was able to save Sera, but I couldn’t save my Aniki. God, I should have saved him.”

“How dare you even think that?”

“I knew that Roger Lawrence’s life was more important than hers, but I didn’t know why until it was too late.”

“Lawrence,” Derrick suddenly felt something attack his spirit. Tyrone’s eyes rolled into the back of his head.

Inside Tyrone’s mind, Tyrone’s real conscience was breaking free. The frozen statue was beginning to crack. Chips of ice were falling off with little pops and clicks. Derrick tried to use the same sealing technic that he had used before. But it was a futile effort.

Tyrone’s conscience was burning Derrick.

‘Stay down. Please,’ Derrick begged him.

Tyrone screamed only one word as his conscience shattered his frozen barrier.

Derrick was flung into the backseat of Tyrone’s brain. Then deeper within the back of his mind. Unable to do anything, but watch as Tyrone took back control.

“Jade,” Tyrone panted, almost exhausted by the mental strain of freeing himself.

“Sera,” Bonny could feel the same sensation as Tyrone did, but it wasn’t as strong, nor as compelling as Tyrone’s was, “Tyrone get back here!”

Tyrone didn’t listen to his grandfather as he raced his way out of the small library and to where the disturbance in the house was occurring. When he arrived he found the monster jumping up to attack Jade. Someone he never thought he’d smell again. Tyrone didn’t have time to think rationally. His instincts kicked in as he pounced on the wild Tesso.

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