Ahir, Guardian of Malor, Chapter 17: Returning Home Audio

This is the last chapter of Ahir, Guardian of Malor, and below is the audio for it. If you want to read along with me, the chapter will be written out below this video. If you want me to make more audio books like this based off of my stories in the future, leave a comment down below of which one. Thank you for listening, and have a great week.

Chapter 17

Returning Home

The sword dropped from Milton’s hands with a loud clang upon the ground and he started to wipe his hands off against his shirt. “I killed someone, I can’t believe I actually ended someone’s life.”

Ahir got up off of the ground and patted Milton on the back. “It’s okay, Milton. It had to be done. He would have killed all of us and who knows how many others if you hadn’t.”

Milton glared at Ahir. “Look at the foul creature you turned into when you came through the portal, I’ll bet it’s because of all the Aureus’Aevum that you killed. Now I’m going to look like that on the inside too.” Milton took a step away from Ahir. “I have a lot to make up for, I don’t know if I will ever be able to fully repent for what I’ve done.”

Ahir started glowing, and the light got brighter and brighter until it hurt Milton’s eyes to look at. The light faded away and instead of a black mist creature, another Aureus’Aevum stood before Milton. Milton grunted in disgust. “That’s not fair! How is it that you and Trixie were turned into Aureus’Aevum and I got stuck at a giant cat?”

A smirk appeared on Ahir’s face but his eyes quickly widened in panic. “Trixie! I hope that she’s alright!” Ahir and Milton turned to rush to Trixie’s side, but saw that she was surrounded by the three Aureus’Aevum that had been helping Lang’kahn break the seal on the sword.

One of the Aureus’Aevum held his hand up and snarled out, “You killed Master Lang’kahn! You will pay for this, starting with the girl!” He stared intently at his hand, and confusion filled his face. “Why isn’t it working? Why isn’t there any fire?”

Milton shook his head and shot the Aureus’Aevum with an arrow before firing its partner into the ground at the base of the throne. The Aureus’Aevum was pulled across the ground until it hit the throne and struggled to move away. “I guess getting rid of Lang’kahn got rid of magic, but it doesn’t seem like it helped the Aureus’Aevum to return to their senses. What are we going to do with them?”

Ahir shrugged. “I guess the only thing we can do is to round them up and take them back to the palace for the king to decide what to do. Now that Dar’duo and Lang’kahn are dead, I wonder who is next in line for the throne.”

Bar’bou’s voice answered, “No one. The royal line that has ruled over our people since civilization was founded twenty thousand years ago has been broken, and my people are left without a leader.”

The last of the Aureus’Aevum that had been threatening Trixie was pinned to the throne and Ahir and Milton rushed over to Bar’bou, who was looking better already. Ahir smiled down at Bar’bou. “That’s a problem to figure out later. I’m glad that you are looking better.”

Bar’bou snorted. “You know that Aureus’Aevum can’t die except by the sword, and the damage that can be done to us is superficial and quickly healed. That doesn’t mean that Miss Ameliason shouldn’t be checked on, or that Sil’abo would appreciate being trapped under that door. Ahir, you tend to Trixe while Milton and I free Sil’abo.”

Ahir rushed over to Trixie’s side and grimaced. She had bruises on her arms that looked like invisible hands had grabbed her, and he assumed that her back must be one massive bruise. He gently caressed her cheek and her eyes slowly fluttered open. A smile filled her face and she asked, “Did we win?”

Ahir returned her smile. “Yeah, we were able to defeat Lang’kahn. Milton saved me at the last second with a crazy bank shot off of your shield. How do you feel?”

Trixie tried to move and her face contorted in pain. She chuckled weakly. “I feel like I was hit by a truck, but I’ll survive. Help me up to my feet?”

Ahir grabbed Trixie’s arm and slowly helped her up to her feet. She groaned and grimaced during the whole process, but she smiled at Ahir once she was standing up. She saw the three Aureus’Aevum pinned to the throne and frowned. “Why are they stuck to the throne like that? Killing Lang’kahn didn’t fix them?”

Ahir shook his head. “No, they are still completely devoted to Lang’kahn, but magic seems to be gone. At least they couldn’t summon any earlier before Milton pinned them to the throne. We haven’t figured out what to do with them yet.” Ahir and Trixie made their way over to where Milton and Bar’bou were helping Sil’abo crawl out from under the door.

Sil’abo dusted himself off and smiled. “I’m glad to see that you all made it out of that fight alive. I thought I heard the king’s voice, is he still here?”

Bar’bou looked down at the ground and shuffled his feet. “No, I’m afraid he isn’t. Lang’kahn was able to kill him.”

Sil’abo’s eyes got a faraway look to them and he dropped down to his knees. “No, it can’t be! Who will lead us if the royal family is gone?”

Ahir sighed. “I am sorry for the loss of your ruler, but I’m sure that you will be able to find a leader to replace him later. We still have all of the Aureus’Aevum that are loyal to Lang’kahn to deal with first. Does anyone have any ideas on what to do with them?”

Milton held his bow up. “They shouldn’t be able to break free of the pull of my Powaga Joursi if magic is truly gone. I could just bundle them up with this.”

Trixie tilted her head. “If magic is gone, why is your bow still working?”

Bar’bou shrugged. “Most of Laz’krit’s artifacts had amazing abilities before Lang’kahn discovered magic, it is something about the way that he makes them that made them special. Your bow should be able to round them all up, but what do we do with them after that?”

A wall hanging was pulled aside and revealed the three other Aureus’Aevum that had been fighting alongside Sil’abo and Milton outside of the throne room, and one of them held a chain up. “We could bind them all with this! They shouldn’t give us any trouble while we transport them then.”

Milton glared at the Aureus’Aevum. “Have you been hiding behind that tapestry this entire time? We could have used your help when we were fighting against Lang’kahn!”

One of the other Aureus’Aevum shuddered and looked away. “Lang’kahn was too powerful! If we’d fought against him he would have turned us or killed us!”

Milton made a disgusted sound and Ahir put an arm on his shoulder. “You have to remember that they aren’t fighters, Milton. We should be grateful they provided you with as much aid as they did.”

Milton pulled his shoulder away. “Whatever, just give me your chain, I’ll go and round the Aureus’Aevum up.” Milton snatched the chain away from the cowering Aureus’Aevum and jumped out of the window of the tower.

The Aureus’Aveum looked after Milton with discomfort. “I think he scares me more than Lang’kahn did.”

Ahir chuckled, “He should, when he gets serious he scares me too. Fortunately we don’t have to worry about him, he’s on our side. Let’s get out of this palace and go give him a hand.” Ahir and the others made their way out of the palace and found many of the Aureus’Aevum stuck together in a large ball, and the rest were sitting on the ground excitedly whispering.

One of the Aureus’Aevum pointed at the group as they exited the castle and excitedly said, “Look! They all came back out! That must mean that Lang’kahn has been defeated! I’m certain that the king will throw a huge feast to celebrate the passing of the biggest threat that our world has ever known!”

The Aureus’Aevum started cheering and dancing, and Bar’bou had to shout for a long time before he managed to get their attention. Once they quieted down, Bar’bou said, “I regret to inform you that the life of our king was claimed by his son, Lang’kahn, before he fell. I call for a moment of silence to mourn the passing of our king, and his son.”

The joy quickly disappeared from the faces of the the Aureus’Aevum, and many started to weep. Ahir whispered to Bar’bou, “The king seems to have been very well loved. I wish I had gotten a chance to meet him.”

Bar’bou sniffled and wiped a tear from his eye. “Yes, the king was loved by all of his subjects because he always put them first. He dedicated his life to making theirs better. He was the greatest of us, and he was my best friend.”

Sorrow filled Ahir’s face and he patted Bar’bou on the back. “He must have been a great man to warrant such praise from you; I’m sorry about your loss, Bar’bou.”

Bar’bou nodded his head. “He was, and he would be strong for our people right now and keep them united. I have to try and do the same now in honor of his memory.” Bar’bou cleared his throat and said, “Thank you. We will have a ceremony to celebrate the life that he lived and to mourn his passing at a later time, but for now we need to get these prisoners back to the palace. Someone call for an ani’voh, and the rest of you spread out and look for any in the city that may need aid.”

Trixie smiled. “I saw some other humans that had been captured by Lang’kahn in the city earlier, I’m going to go and help them get to the place where the others are waiting for an ani’voh.”

Milton nodded his head. “I’ll go with you. I’m sure more of Lang’kahn’s followers are guarding them.” Trixie and Milton disappeared into the city and the other Aureus’Aevum spread out as well.

Ahir smiled at Bar’bou. “Looks like you would do a good job in the role of king. Perhaps you are the new leader your people are looking for?”

Bar’bou shook his head. “Don’t be silly, Ahir. I’m simply a royal advisor, I have no business trying to lead this people. Come and help me make sure that Milton didn’t accidently pull any Aureus’Aevum from our side into this pile of Lang’kahn’s followers.”

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Two large fires burned on a grassy hill not far from the palace, and they were surrounded by weeping Aureus’Aevum dressed in all black. Bar’bou stood next to Val’tina and stared at the fires sorrowfully. Bar’bou turned and took her  hand to try and comfort her, and he said, “I believe the country will look to you now for guidance, my queen.”

Val’tina wiped at her eyes with the sleeve of her black robe, and she shook her head. “Our world has ever been led by a king, just as the Father leads all. I would not presume to break tradition.”

Bar’bou frowned at Val’tina, “But if not you, your majesty, then whom could it possibly be?”

Val’tina sniffled and said, “I know you are concerned about our people, but can this not wait until Dar’duo and Lang’duo’s memorial ceremony is finished?”

Bar’bou bowed his head. “Of course, your majesty. How inconsiderate of me.” He backed away to where his wife was standing with their son, Ahir, Trixie, and Milton.

Bec’kha, Bar’bou’s wife smacked him. “I can’t believe you would bother the queen with such matters now of all times! She just lost her family! I know I wouldn’t want anyone bothering me with anything, no matter how important, if I’d lost you and Kahl.”

Bar’bou rubbed at the spot where his wife had hit him and sighed. “You are right of course, my dear. I can’t imagine what she’s feeling right now, but you must admit that choosing who will lead us is very important!”

Bec’kha glared at Bar’bou and Ahir put an arm on his shoulder. “Settle down, Bar’bou. From what you’ve told me every province has its own governors to manage them, they should be able to take care of things until a new king is chosen.”

Bar’bou nodded his head hesitantly. He was about to say something else when a deep Aureus’Aevum voice started to sing.

“As fires purify the land as a whole,

so may these fires purify your soul.

Enter into the Father’s rest,

passing from this life, your test.

Worry not for those who love you,

It is our duty to see them through.

Glory crowns the life of our Kings,

It is of them who we sing.”

The Aureus’Aevum bowed to Val’tina and made his way back into the crowd weeping. That song was the sign that the service was over, and weeping Aureus’Aevum started to whisper to one another asking about who would lead them.

Bar’bou made his way to the top of the hill and turned to face the crowd. The crowd grew silent and looked to Bar’bou. Bar’bou cleared his throat and said, “I have spoken with Val’tina, and she has decided that she will step aside and let another take the place of leadership for our people. There is no protocol for how to proceed with this, so I will make a suggestion; I believe that our leader should be chosen by a council of the governors. I would like to make a few recommendations of individuals for the council to consider. By no means must they choose one of these, they are simply suggestions. I would recommend Mour’thon, he has done an excellent job of ruling over his province, or perhaps Behn’thon. He has more experience with caring for the day to day needs of an agricultural society than any other governor gathered here today.”

Behn’thon called out, “Thank you for the nomination, but to be honest, I can’t think of anyone better suited to take on the role of our leader than you, Bar’bou. I have heard reports of how you organized our people after Lang’duo’s defeat, may he find the Father’s rest, and it has long been suspected that it was your wisdom that made Dar’duo such a good king.”

Shouts of agreement echoed from the crowd, and Bar’bou stared at them in wonder. “Me? You can’t be serious! I am but a simple advisor! If you value my wisdom that much, I will stay on in my role for whichever of you should take on the role.”

Mour’thon smiled and said, “You said that the council of governors should vote on it, so let’s have a vote; all in favor of Bar’bou becoming the next king say aye.”

Every governor and even many of the Aureus’Aevum gathered in the crowd shouted, “Aye!”

Bar’bou shook his head and said, “Very well. According to the will of the council and the people, I will take on the name, Bar’duo. Our first order of business must be deciding what to do with those who are still loyal to Lang’duo. I fear that they cannot be released for the harm they may cause to our society. The only two options we have would be to imprison them for life for something they can’t control, or to use the Gladio Protegat one last time to send them to their final rest.”

Shocked cries erupted from the crowd. “You want to spread even more death to our people? Haven’t we suffered enough?”

The governors talked amongst themselves for several minutes, with angry shouts, and finally Behn’thon turned and said, “The council has discussed this and we feel that the Gladio Protegat should be used as a mercy to those still under Lang’duo’s influence. But we feel that Tor’jahd should not be afforded this mercy, since he was not under Lang’duo’s control and is directly responsible for everything that has befallen our people. He shall live out the rest of his days in the dungeons!”

Bar’duo bowed his head. “I find the council’s ruling to be wise and it will be done as they say. Once this matter is settled, my first command will be for Laz’krit to melt down the Gladio Protegat and for its metal to be formed into medals for the heroes that rescued us in our hour of need. I would like to extend an invitation for our human allies to stay and live amongst us. They have more than earned the right to stay if they should wish it.” Bar’duo’s decree was met with cheers and Bar’duo turned to look at Ahir, Trixie, and Milton. “Would you like to stay with us, my friends? Perhaps Ahir could even be my advisor?”

Ahir and Trixie put their heads together and started to whisper, but Milton shook his head. “I am afraid that I must decline your invitation. I would always be an outsider because of my appearance, no matter how good your intentions.”

Bar’duo nodded his head understandingly. “If that is what you choose, then I wish you the best of luck. I hope that you would stay long enough for the feast we are planning for you.”

Milton nodded his head. “Yes, I will stay for your feast, but I will depart as soon as it is finished. I’m sure much has happened since we left.”

Trixie nodded her head and Ahir gave her a peck on the cheek. He turned to look at Bar’duo and said, “Trixie and I would like to stay, but I’m afraid that I will have to pass on your offer to be your advisor. I’m just a simple street performer and I don’t think that I would do a very good job as an advisor. Besides, this new world is amazing and Trixie and I intend to see all of it.”

Bar’duo smiled back at Ahir, “A very wise decision, I would like to be the first to greet you to your new home. Behn’thon, please select someone to deal with those loyal to Lang’kahn and we will begin our feast!”

Behn’thon looked at Bar’duo uneasily, and Ahir stepped forward. “I will do it.”

Bar’duo shook his head. “No, Ahir. You have already done more than enough for our people. I couldn’t ask you to do this as well.”

Ahir said more confidently, “Your race is a peaceful one, Bar’duo. They shouldn’t be forced to endure such a thing, and I already have the blood of Lang’duo’s followers on my hands, a little more won’t hurt. Besides, the sword chose me.”

Bar’duo nodded his head. “Very well, a servant will escort you to the dining hall once you are finished. As for the rest of us, let us go and eat!” The people cheered and all followed Bar’duo back to the palace.”

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A servant led Ahir into the dining hall, and Ahir scanned the crowd for Trixie and Milton. Ahir’s eyes scanned tables full of vegetables and fruits of every color and shape imaginable piled onto tables next to tarts, pies, cakes and stacks of fresh bread. Finally he found Milton stuffing a tart into his mouth and made his way over to his side. Trixie looked up at Ahir and smiled at him. “Is it finished?”

Ahir sighed and nodded his head. “Yes, I just handed the sword over to Laz’krit for him to melt down. Now, what here is tasty?”

Trixie moved over to make room for Ahir and he sat down between her and Milton. “Milton is enjoying those fruit and nut tarts, and this red piece of fruit tastes like a kiwi. You have to try the bread though. I’ve never tasted such good bread before.”

Ahir reached for a loaf of bread when he felt a delicate touch on his arm. He turned and saw a female Aureus’Aevum with two goblets in her hand smiling suggestively at him. “I thought that perhaps the hero would be thirsty. Perhaps I could offer him a goblet of tri’lezzit and you could tell me about some of your adventures?”

Ahir swallowed hard and stammered, “Um, I, that is, um…”

Trixie interrupted him and took the goblet from from the female Aureus’Aevum and glared at her. “The hero has only just sat down to eat. Perhaps you can hear about his adventures another time?”

The Aureus’Aevum returned Trixie’s glare. “Very well, I will have to seek him out later to hear of his stories. Perhaps sometime when he’s alone.” She moved off walking with a very suggestive sway.

Ahir gave off a sigh of relief. “Thanks for the rescue, Trixie. I think we should start our tour of the world very soon. I don’t think I want to spend anymore time around the palace than need be if there are many other female Aureus’Aevum like her around.”

Trixie sighed and leaned into Ahir’s shoulder. “I can’t wait to get started! I’m sure there is so much to see.”

Milton sighed in disgust. “I don’t understand why you are getting all the attention, I was the one that saved the day! I bet if I didn’t look like this that she would have been here to talk to me. This is exactly why I’m not staying.”

Ahir took a bite from the bread in his hand and looked at Milton. “What are you going to do when you get back home?”

Milton’s scowl turned into a grin. “I have already talked it over with Laz’krit, but he is going to let me keep some of the artifacts that we used. I want to go back and use them to make a difference in our world, to keep fighting the bad guys.”

Ahir nodded his head. “That sounds like a good idea. After everything we’ve fought against stopping normal humans should be a breeze for you.” Ahir, Trixie and Milton talked for hours while they enjoyed good food and drink, but finally the time for Milton to go arrived.

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Laz’krit made his way through the dining hall with a box tucked under one of his arms and a bag with bulges sticking out of it over his shoulder. He dodged servers with trays of empty plates and bowls until he reached Bar’duo’s side. He held the box out to Bar’duo and bowed, “The medals you requested, sire.”

“Ah, very good.” Bar’duo accepted the box from Laz’krit and eyed the bag suspiciously. “And what is in there?”

Laz’krit touched the bag over his shoulder and smiled. “Milton asked if he could take some of my artifacts back with him, and I selected a few that he may find useful.”

Bar’duo raised an eyebrow. “Useful? Whatever for?”

Laz’krit shrugged. “He said something about being able to use them to make a difference in his world. I’m just happy that someone will finally be using my masterpieces.”

Bar’duo nodded his head. “Yes, I have greatly come to regret that Dar’duo didn’t find more of a use for your artifacts, after my time with the humans I certainly have come to appreciate them more.” Bar’duo looked down at his half filled plate of food and pushed it aside. “Milton must be getting anxious to return to his world. I suppose I shouldn’t put this off any longer.” Bar’duo rose to his feet and said in a loud voice, “I believe it is time to say farewell to Milton, any who wish to come and say their thanks and goodbyes may join us, otherwise continue your feasting.”

Bar’duo’s family and Laz’krit followed Bar’duo through the dining hall toward the throne room. Ahir, Trixie, and Milton joined them once they had made it halfway across the hall, and before they had made it to the doors a handful of others joined them. Bar’duo made his way to the raised section of the floor that his throne rested upon and he turned to look out at those gathered before him.

He smiled at his family, Bec’tina and Kahl’kahn, and he cleared his throat. “I want to thank you all for coming here to say thank you to these three humans who have sacrificed so much to save us. Their world is so different from ours, filled with violence and poverty, corruption and despair, and at a glance they appear to be little more than savages. I have lived among them, and I have learned first hand that there is so much more to humans that what meets the eye. They are a courageous race, and there is much kindness in those that I encountered.”

Sil’abo interrupted Bar’duo, “I thought we were here to say thank you for their service! At the rate you’re going they’ll be dead of old age before you get to it!”

Bar’duo glared at Sil’abo and shook his head. “Yes, very well.” He pulled the lid off of the box containing the medals and pulled them out. “These medals were formed from the Gladio Protegat, the only weapon ever created that could harm our people. May they serve as a reminder of the courageous acts of selflessness performed by these heroes. Friends, please step forward and receive your medals.”

Milton approached Bar’duo and Ahir and Trixie formed a line behind him. Bar’duo put a medal around Milton’s neck and smiled at him. “Thank you for your service to our people, you and your deeds shall ever be remembered. I only regret that Tor’jahd kept you from working with us.”

Milton smiled and moved over to make room for Ahir. Bar’dou looped the medal around Ahir’s neck. “Thank you for your service, you and your deeds shall ever be remembered. You taught me much about honor and sacrifice during my time with you, ever will you be welcome in my palace.”

Ahir bowed his head and made room for Trixie to step forward. Bar’dou placed the medal around her neck and smiled at her. “Thank you for your service, you and your deeds shall ever be remembered. You taught me great lessons in kindness and selflessness when you allowed Ahir and I to stay with you when our home burned down. My home shall ever be open to you should you find need for it.”

Laz’krit stepped forward and handed Milton the sack of artifacts he had brought with him. “I picked out four for you that you should find useful in your quest. I hope that they help to keep you safe for many years to come.”

Milton bowed his head. “Thank you, I will make sure that they are put to good use.” Milton turned to face Ahir and Trixie. “I guess this is it. Are you sure you want to stay? I could use some help protecting the city, and I’m sure Laz’krit could find more artifacts for you.”

Ahir shook his head. “This world has too many wonders to see to leave it behind so easily. Besides, I was only ever a homeless street performer in that world, there really isn’t anything for me to go back to.”

Trixie nodded her head. “Ahir’s right, I didn’t have anyone back home that will miss me too much. Besides, wherever Ahir goes, that’s where I’ll be too.”

Milton looked down at the floor and blinked back tears from his good eye. “This is goodbye then, I guess. I’ll never see either of you again once I close that portal.”

Bar’duo interrupted, “That’s not necessarily true. Our scholars are going to be looking into Lang’kahn’s journals from when he was first discovering magic. We hope that we have only temporarily lost access to magic, and it can be found once more.”

Milton shook his head. “By the time they figure it out I’ll probably be dead. Time moves a lot faster on my side of the portal.” Milton looked at Ahir and Trixie. “I wish you both lots of happiness, and I regret allowing Tor’jahd to turn me against you.” Milton put the sack over his shoulder and moved toward the portal.

Ahir put a hand on Milton’s shoulder and Milton turned around. Ahir gave Milton a hug and said, “You were there to save me when I needed you to, that is all that matters.”

Milton returned the hug. “Just returning the favor. I seem to remember you saving my life a few times as well.” Milton broke away and stepped through the portal, and a short time later the portal closed in a shimmer of blue.

Bar’duo looked away from the portal and wiped tears away from his eyes. “What of you two, when will you be leaving to do your exploring?”

Ahir shrugged. “Seems to me that there is plenty to explore in this city…” Trixie crossed her arms and stepped on Ahir’s foot. Ahir cleared his throat and continued, “Which is why we’ll return to see it soon! I’m afraid that we’re going to start our journey soon, perhaps as soon as tomorrow.” A satisfied smile filled Trixie’s face.

Trixie’s eye’s lit up in surprise. “Oh, that reminds me!” She reached into one of the pouches on her silver robe and pulled out a packet of seeds. “I know how much you enjoy apples, and that there weren’t any in your world, so I brought you some seeds so you can grow your own trees. I hope that they’ll grow here.”

Bar’duo’s eyes lit up with excitement. “Oh, what a marvelous gift! I’m certain that the royal gardeners will be able to make them grow, and I’ll be able to share the joy of apples with everyone! Thank you.” Bar’duo cleared his throat. “I”m afraid I can’t allow the two of you to leave without making sure you have a proper name. No, Ahir and Trixie certainly won’t do. What is it that the two of you wish to do here, other than explore?”

Ahir smiled and pulled out some juggling balls. “I’m an entertainer, that’s what I do best. I’m hoping to bring joy to everyone I meet with my skills. I’m going to teach Trixie how to as well.”

Bar’bou frowned. “You will be the first entertainers of your kind in our world; there isn’t a word for what you do. Perhaps we could turn your name into the word for it. Yes, from this day forward, you shall be known as Ahir’bohater and Trixie’bohater! How does that sound.”

Trixie got a dreamy look in her eyes, “That sound perfect, don’t you think so, Ahir?”

Ahir returned her smile. “Yes it does. Ahir’bohater and Trixie’bohater, together, exploring the world and bringing smiles to all.”

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Milton stepped into the hospital and saw Daniel sitting in a chair in front of the door flipping through a magazine full of books. Milton cleared his throat and Daniel jumped and fell out of his chair. A smile crossed his face when he saw Milton. “Milton! You’re back! Where are the others?”

Milton hung his head. “I have some sad news, but I don’t want to share it until I have a chance to tell Detective Miguel. Can you take me to him?”

Daniel’s smile faded away and he looked at the floor. “Yeah, that won’t be a problem. You should probably close that portal before we leave though.”

Milton stared at the portal and hesitated. If he did this, then it was over. He would never see Ahir and Trixie again. He sighed and reached into the bag that was slung over his shoulder and pulled out his bow. He thrust it into the portal and the portal winked shut around it. He tucked the bow back into the bag and started for the door. “Let’s go.”

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Milton followed Daniel into Detective Miguel’s office, and he saw three chairs set up across from Detective Miguel, one of them filled by Alicia. Detective Miguel gestured toward one of the chairs. “Milton, it is good to see you again. Officer Daniel said that there was something you wanted to speak with me about? Something to do with Ahir and Trixie? Did something happen to them?”

Milton sat down and rested his bag on his lap. “I wanted to talk with you for a few reasons. First, I wanted to let you know that you won’t have to worry about anymore Aureus’Aevum attacks. Lang’kahn and his followers have been taken care of, and in the process of doing so, magic has been lost.”

Alicia glared at Milton. “You’re stalling, where are Ahir and Trixie?”

Milton took in a deep breath. “Ahir and Trixie decided to stay in the Aureus’Aevum world instead of returning. We won’t ever see them again.”

Daniel let out a sigh of relief. “Oh, is that all? I was afraid that something terrible had happened to them.”

Milton smirked, “No, they’re fine. There was one other thing that I wanted to talk with you about. The Aureus’Aevum allowed me to bring some of their artifacts back with me, and I wanted to get your permission to continue using them to help you fight crime.”

Detective Miguel leaned forward. “That would depend on what these artifacts of yours can do.”

Milton pulled the bag on his lap open and pulled his bow out. “I believe you are familiar with what my bow is capable of.” He set the bow down on the top of the desk and pulled out a pair of gauntlets. “These will enable anyone wearing them to fly.”

Daniel whistled and looked at the gauntlets appreciatively. “I sure wouldn’t mind trying those out.”

Milton shrugged. “Maybe I’ll let you wear them sometime then. Now this,” Milton pulled a helmet out of the bag. “This will let anyone wearing it to run super fast. I haven’t had a chance to try it out yet, but Trixie seemed to enjoy using it.”

Detective Miguel nodded his head. “Those all seem safe enough, as long as they don’t end up in the wrong person’s hands. Is that all that you brought?”

Milton shook his head. “No, there’s one more.” He pulled a chain out of the bag and set it on the desk. “Anyone I touch with this chain will be bound in invisible restraints until I free them.”

Detective Miguel stared at the artifacts for a moment and finally nodded his head. “I will allow you to aid us with these artifacts under one condition. You will be working with us, so you will keep us informed of any and all cases that you are working on.”

Milton held out his hand. “That seems fair, I agree to your terms.”

Detective Miguel shook Milton’s hand and Daniel piped up. “One more condition, I get to try flying with the gauntlets.”

Milton chuckled, “Sure, that won’t be a problem.”

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Laz’krit dragged Kahl’kahn into the throne room, Kahl’kahn shouting out protests and trying to wiggle out of Laz’krit’s grasp, but it was no use; Laz’krit had a grip like a vice after his long hours at the anvil. Bar’duo sat up and stared at the scene with curiosity. “What is the meaning of this disturbance?”

Laz’krit glared at Kalh’kahn. “I found this little troublemaker playing inside of my vault!”

Bar’duo sighed and shook his head. “Is that all? Thank you for bringing this to my attention, Bec’tina and I will have a word with the boy.”

Laz’krit shook his head. “It isn’t as simple as that, I’m afraid. He was playing with the picture frame.”

Bar’duo gasped. “Not the one that opens portals between dimensions.”

Laz’krit sighed and nodded his head. “The very one. The little scamp sent all of my artifacts through the portal. Who knows how much trouble he may have caused.”

Bar’duo’s eyes went wide in shock. “It can’t be, after all the aid that the humans gave us, my son goes and returns the favor by filling their world with chaos.”

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