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Rated: E · Fiction · Fantasy · #2317882
A young woman fallen on hard times is taken in by a seemingly harmless old lady
The Source of all Magic

Chapter One

Sophena pleaded with the owner, but he wouldn’t change his mind. She would have to leave her home. The home she had grown up in and spent many happy days with her parents and younger brother. After her parents died, it had been a struggle to get by. Then her brother died; he had always been frail, and it took all she had to look after him, but she hadn’t minded. She would do the same all over again if she could bring him back. Sophena sighed, gathering up her few belongings. She left her home behind. Now, she had no one and nowhere to go. Life seemed so futile that she wandered the streets, begging for work and food. She even resorted to stealing food. After a couple of weeks on the street, she thought her luck had changed when she met an old woman who took her in. For a while, things were good. She helped the old maid with chores about the house and running errands. In return, she had a comfortable place to stay and plenty of food.

Then, one day, returning from an errand, she found the old maid dead. The next of kin came and took over, casting suspicion on Sophena, and once again, she found herself on the streets. Rumours spread about Sophena and the old maid. They said she had killed her for the inheritance. Sophena didn’t even believe the old maid had any inheritance worth stealing. It was just a malicious rumour the next of kin spread. Sophena suspected that they had killed the old lady and, to avoid being caught, cast suspicion on herself. It was too much to bear. She had to leave this town to get away from all the looks of suspicion from the townspeople. Once again, Sophena gathered her few possessions. This time, she left the town behind her. What little food she managed to take with her soon ran out. She wandered aimlessly in the woods for days. She wanted to live more than anything. It was hard, especially at first, but Sophena learned to adapt and survive in the woods.

One day, while scavaging for something to eat, she suddenly felt dizzy. At first, she ignored it, but the sensation grew stronger; everything started spinning. The next thing she knew, she was lying on the ground looking into the night sky. It was daylight only moments ago. The stars seemed very bright and close as if she could almost touch them. Sophena lifted her head to look around. Her head still spun, and she thought she was seeing things as the ground, and the trees seemed to shine from within. She rubbed her eyes closed and opened again, but the eerie light remained,

“Tis the source of all magic you are experiencing, girl.” Said a voice that sounded familiar, “Aye, it is I, Sophy.”

Sophena shook her head. “What, no, it can’t be. I must be dreaming you are dead.”

“Ha, indeed I am, but in this place, we can see and talk with each other.”

Sophena finally sat up, turning around to see the glowing figure of the old lady. “Are you a ghost then? Have you come to haunt me because you think I had something to do with your death?”

The ghost sighed solemnly regarding Sophena. “No, Sophy, I don’t blame you. I know who is to blame for my death.”

Sophena had been holding her breath, trembling. She thought the ghost was blaming her and wanted to punish her in some way. She let out a gushing breath, relieved the ghost didn’t blame her. “Oh, then was it...” She didn’t want to accuse the old lady’s own kin, although she thought it was suspicious.

“They will pay for their sins in due time. No, girl, I have brought you to this place to give you a gift. You have always been a kind and thoughtful soul, never complaining.”

Sophena shook her, tears rolling down her face. “No, you took me and helped me. I was only trying to repay your kindness.”

“You did that and more despite the hardships you endured before I took you in. Enough now...What you or no one else knew about me, not even my wretched kin. In my youth, I was a powerful sorceress.” Sophena gaped at the ghost in disbelief, wondering if her death had sent her mad. The ghost smiled. “You may disbelieve me now, but there is one thing I must do before leaving this realm.”

Sophena, despite all that had just happened, was curious about what the ghost meant. “What is it?”

“Pass my power to another. Someone worthy.”

Sophena frowned, still not understanding, “Who?”

The ghost of the old sorceress smiled. “Pointing a bony finger at Sophena, “You. It is my gift to you, Sophena.”

Sophena was blinded by a flash of light, and her body shook erratically. She felt a prickling sensation through her whole body. Then, darkness, she woke lying on her back where she had fallen. “Was it all a dream?”

“Return here when you want answers and learn more.” She heard the ghost’s voice echo in her head

“No, not a dream then.” But Sophena still found it all too unbelievable. What really left an impression on her was that place. “What did the ghost call it... The source of all magic.” It was so beautiful there that she wanted to return to see it again. Return she did and was surprised to see the ghost remained. For two years, Sophena kept returning, and the ghost of the old sorceress answered many questions and taught her how to use and control the gift she had given Sophena. One day, Sophena returned, but the ghost was no longer there. Sophena knew now how get to the source on her own. The first few times, the ghost had teleported her to the source, but now she could do it by herself. Sophena always felt at peace in this beautiful place. It felt empty now, and that filled her with sadness. Without the ghost of the sorceress, she felt alone again. Now, however, things were different. She realised she had the power. Never would people be able to take advantage of her again. She finally had control of her own destiny.
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