Part 2: A Witch’s Quarry
As Mira laid unconscious in the nurse’s office, Volt brewed tea and Psyche played a song on a violin. She was very good, but her song was unusually somber considering her personality.
“What kind of tea are you brewing?” Flora asked Volt. “It smells wonderful, but I've never smelled any tea like it.”
“It’s Minervan Goldtrunk Tea. One cup is enough to restore someone back to full power. Since Mira always wipes out when she uses her paladin form I end up making it a lot.” He said. “Not that I mind; I make some really good tea.”
“I bet,” Flora agreed. “But isn’t this a little too much tea for Mira to drink?” She handed the third tray of cups to Helia.
“Well, luckily, it’s not just for Mira. That fight wiped everyone out, though your guys’ exhaustion is more spiritual than physical--luckily, the tea helps with that too.” He poured the last cup and grabbed the tray. “Thank you for helping, by the way.”
“No problem!” Flora said, “I’m enjoying talking to you! My father would tell me stories about Minervan wildlife, are the flowers really that big?”
“Bigger,” Volt said. “But only in Selenus Forest. And the Minervan Rocs are tameable...if you smell like crystal worms.” He snorted. “You would just die at the story of how Mira figured that one out.”
“Oh my,” Flora gasped. “I’ve always wanted to visit, but my parents always said that Minerva is really hard to visit. Though, I’d love to show my planet, Lynphea. Maybe you could show the other Minervans that the rest of the magic dimension isn’t so scary.”
Volt sighed, “I don’t know, Miss Flora. It was only the appearance of the Wraiths that convinced our parents to let us come to Alfea, Cloud Tower, and Red Fountain. And if they find out that the Wraiths attacked us here, they might pull use right back to Minerva.” He shook his head. “Sorry, Miss Flora. My parents are protective, even by Minervan standards. This is actually the first time my sisters and I have left the planet.”
Flora put her hand on Volt’s shoulder. “It’s fine sweetie; and you don’t have to call me Miss Flora. Just calling me Flora is perfectly fine. Is it alright if I call you Volt?”
“Yeah, and thank you,” Volt told her. They walked into the nurse’s office. Psyche was still playing the violin. By now it was like a spiritual experience; her hair was blowing like in the wind and she was looking surprisingly witchy. “Psyche…” Volt mumbled. “PSYCHE!” He bellowed when she didn’t stop.
Psyche flinched and her violin screeched. However, everything went back to normal. “Heh, sorry,” she chuckled. “I always get carried away on the violin.” she began playing again, but this time she played a more upbeat tune.
Mira stirred, then sat up and rubbed her head. “Ugh...my head is killing me. Did we win?”
Volt handed her the tea cup. “Well, we made the Wraiths flee,” he told Mira, “But even the Winx can’t fight them.” he winced and turned to the Winx girls. “Ah, sorry. Everyone else who has fought the raiths has collapsed because of their energy.”
Mira sipped her cup. “Everyone except us, that is. We’re the only ones immune, it seems like.” She sat up and turned to Volt. “Thanks for the tea; it really hit the spot.” She didn’t smile, but her voice was a lot softer and kinder.
“Let’s move to the simulation room,” Faragonda suggested, “and don’t worry, you can bring your tea with you. It’s too delicious to let go to waist.” She smiled kindly and they walked from the nurse’s office.
“You know, with the magic-restoring properties of this tea,” Tecna commented, “We could use it to restore our power after battles, and also restore our students after classes. Volt, is there any way you could tell me the recipe?” She pulled out her phone and walked closely next to Volt.
“Um...maybe?” Volt mumbled. He accidently bumped Tecna’s phone and it completely shorted out. “Ah! Sorry! That tends to happen when I touch electronics.” He apologized. He created a spark with his finger and touched it again, turning it back on.
“That’s no issue,” Tecna assured him. “It’s kind of expected, considering your powers. I never got a chance to ask, are you weather fairy? Your powers seem to indicate so.”
“Eh, kind of. I’m a fairy of lightning. Any other weather powers I might have come directly from controlling the lightning and static in the air. Mira has some wind powers, but those are even more limited than mine. On Minerva, it’s common--even expected--to learn to tame one of the wild forces of nature. I got lightning.” He made a peace sign and tiny bolts of electricity ran up between his fingers. “Not that I mind it.”
“Does this mean there are fairies of the sun on Minerva?” Stella asked.
“Not many, and none are as powerful as you, Miss Stella,” Volt told her. “When I talk about the forces of nature, I mean like the elements.”
“Light fairies live on the mountains,” Mira commented. “They use the light reflecting off the snow for power. There aren’t a lot of fairies actually on the mountains, however. The mountains are for training warriors and paladins. The cold from the snow steals our nerves and helps us focus.” She gave a small, smug grin and added “When I’m crowned queen, I’m going to rule the mountains.”
“I’m impressed by that supersonic scream you made, Psyche,” Musa said. “Are there sound fairies on your world? I come from a world of music, so there are mostly music fairies.”
“Oh, definitely not. I’m not a sound witch, either, I’m the witch of ghosts,” Psyche explained. “Necromancers, shadowmancers, witches and dark wizards, they all come from the deep--the underground caves and caverns that connect all of Minerva. They are the most secretive group on Minerva, but they are pivotal to the balance of Minerva. When I’m crowned queen, I’m going to rule the deep. The caves are so pretty!”
“Wait, how are both of you going to be crowned queen?” Stella asked. “Can’t there only be one?”
“Not on Minerva,” Volt explained. “Its typical for the royal family to have three heirs: one for the mountains, one for the deep, and one for the surface. Personally, I’m gonna be king of the surface.” The group walked into the simulation room; the Illuminates sat together while the winx and specialists sat around them.
“So what did you mean when you said that ‘you’re the Illuminates’?” Stella asked. “I know about all forms of light, but this ‘Illuminate’ title is unknown to me. Does it have something to do with you being the heirs to Minerva?”
“A good deduction, Stella,” Faragonda told her, “But rather, the title of Illuminate is given to those who were affected by the great cosmic event known as the Illumination.”
An image of when Bloom had witnessed the bright light in the sky flashed in her head. “Miss Faragonda, what exactly is this Illumination? I have the feeling that it’s something that we’ll be hearing a lot about. Also...I can feel something in my Dragon’s Flame.”
“That is very good Bloom, because the Illumination is connected to the Dragon Flame.” Using her magic, Faragonda made an image of the Great Dragon with red light. It flew around above their heads. “When the Great Dragon came into existence, it was a force of light and warmth, the power of good magic. Many sought its power, like the Ancestral Witches, and many forces were created to oppose and contain the power--like the water stars. But the Great Dragon itself had but one opposite.” She created the image of a large, dark purple squid-like monster. “The Dread Kraken, a being of cold and darkness. As natural opposites, the Dragon and the Kraken fought against each other since the dawn of time. Their powers were too strong for the constant battling.” The images of the two great beasts clashed, with light flashing every time they hit each other. “The fabric of space and time rippled with every clash, and it was likely that that everything, even the two of them, would be destroyed. The opposition of their energies created two separate universes, one for each of them.” The images became contained into two separate bubbles, each the color of the beast it contained. “Our universe, the universe of the Dragon, is the opposite to the other universe, the universe of the Kraken. Because they are opposites, the universes are attracted to each other like magnets.” The bubbles floated together. “But since they are opposites, they cannot combine.” the bubbles clashed, and a bright light burst from between them. “The Illumination occurs when the universes collide. It occurs for only a short time and,” the bubbles flew apart to opposite sides of the room, “the universes separate for a hundred years between.”
“A universe that’s opposite to ours?” Tecna asked. “We’ve dealt with multi-dimensional threats before, but multi-universal? That seems a bit beyond our skill level.”
“Also, are you saying that...there’s…” Bloom stammered.
“Yes, Bloom. There is a girl from that universe with the power of the Kraken. And she is the opposite of you.”
Icy glared at the witch. “You can’t trick me you little fairy! I know it’s you, Bloom!” she fired an ice spell at “Doom" who rolled her eyes and created a vortex of dark magic. The ice shards flew in and shot back out, colored inky black. The Trix all shouted in alarm and dodged--the shards embedded themselves in the wall and the Trix realized they were now dark crystals.
“I am Doom,” she told them, as shadowy black tentacles unfurled from inside of her cloak. “I am the Witch of the Kraken’s Ink, Conqueror of Worlds, Supreme Leader of the Cursed Dimension! I am everything that Bloom wishes she could be! My strengths are her weaknesses. And I have myself stronger than she could ever be. So I would think twice about who you’re calling Bloom.” She withdrew her tentacles and floated past the Trix. “Now, as I recall, you three desire to see me defeat Bloom, correct?”
“That would be pretty epic,” Stormy commented. “If you can actually do it.”
Doom turned and gave her a wicked grin. “I know I can.” She floated from the cave, with the Trix following closely behind.
“Due to the nature of the of the Illumination, magic can be scrambled, even reversed, during its occurence,” Faragonda said. “Volt, Mira, and Psyche, I’m guessing that the Illumination occurred at an important time in your lives?”
“Yes,” Volt said. “It happened the night we were born. There’s an ancient Minervan spell that tells parents what kind of magic their children will have when they are born. It’s extremely accurate--in fact, it’s never been wrong.”
“That is, until we came along,” Mira grumbled. “But even then, the spell wasn’t wrong--we were. Volt was supposed to be born a paladin, Psyche was supposed to be a fairy, and I was supposed to be a witch. The Illumination scrambled our magic and made us wrong.”
Psyche added, “But it made us so much more powerful, too. The Light of the Illumination makes us so much more powerful than we’d be normally. I know you feel wrong, but I still think being an Illuminate is a gift.”
“It’s a gift that keeps putting everyone around is danger,” Mira retorted. “The witch that attacked us at home, she was talking about us opening the ‘jewels’, which might be the only reason mom and dad sent us here in the first place.”
“What gateway?” Bloom asked.
“The Luminous Jewels,” Volt sighed. “The portal between the two Universes. It’s our destiny find them and open the Universal Gateway. I don’t know what the witch plans with such a portal, but it can’t be anything good. However, we can’t fight against her ourselves. We can barely fight against the Wraiths!”
“Right,” Tecna commented. She created a holographic image of the three Wraiths they’d fought earlier. “They’re individually powerful, but seem to work as a hive mind. They don’t seem to have conscious thought, and move like dolls. Our attacks have no great effect, but they can send waves of negative energy that can drop us to our knees. Where do these creatures come from?”
“They come from the Wraithix,” the Illuminates replied simultaneously.
“I...have never heard of that magic before,” Tecna commented. “And it doesn’t appear in any of my databases.”
“It’s unfamiliar to me as well,” Griffin agreed, “And I am well versed in most dark magic.”
“There’s no way for any of you to know about the Wraithix,” Volt explained. “It doesn’t exist in this universe. Our knowledge of it is limited, but my sisters and I can sense when things come from the opposite universe. The witch wears the Wraithix as a bracelet. The negative energy contained in the jewels boost her dark magic and form into Wraiths that obey her every command. Because of our powers, my sisters and I aren’t affected by their negative energy, but summoning the Light of the Illumination takes a lot out of us. And you all saw what it does to Mira!”
“I will summon the entire Illumination if I have to,” Mira fiercely stated, “if it means finally defeating those Wraiths for good!” She stood up and pulled out her phantoblade. “I swear on the Minerva Blades!”
“We know, Mira,” Volt and Psyche said.
Volt added, “But if you do so, we’ll all probably die. The best thing we can probably do is try to stay safe and learn as much as we can. Especially you, Mira. You need to control your paladin form.”
Mira shrugged. “Yeah, you’re right. Shouldn’t we be heading to our schools then? Everyone will be safer when the three of us our separated. At least then we’d only have to deal one Wraith at a time.” She turned to the specialists and asked, “Shouldn’t we head to Red Fountain?”
“What do you think, Faragonda?” Saladin asked.
“I do think that the Illuminates would know the best way to keep themselves,” Faragonda said. “If Mira believes that if separating is the best option currently, then I say listen to her. Besides, the students will be arriving before too long.”
“Very well. Specialists! Let us escort the princess to Red Fountain.” Saladin announced. The specialists made their goodbyes to their girlfriends as the Illuminates hugged each other tight. Mira let go of her siblings and walked out the door.
As she walked in the middle of the specialists, she stated, “You guys don’t need to refer to me as ‘princess’. You can just call me ‘Mira.’”
“Oh?” Sky asked. “Are you really okay with that?”
“More than okay. Most of the people who call me ‘Princess’ or ‘Miranda’ try to get me to do stuff I don’t want to do, or the other way around. So, needless to say, I prefer just being called ‘Mira.’” Mira explained as they walked, before looking towards the door and sighing.
“Something wrong, Mira?” Helia asked. “Are you worried about your siblings?”
“No...I know Psyche and Mira will be more than fine. I’m just worried about what I’m going to do without them. No matter what, the three of us have never been...separated. I don’t know how I’ll cope,” Mira explained. Giving Helia an embarrassed wince, she added, “Volt and Psyche make up 80% of my self-confidence.”
“Oh? And what’s the other 20%?”
“Spite,” Mira answered.
Helia blinked in surprise and commented, “Not what I was expecting, but I suppose it works. And, if it helps any, I’ll happily help you with your confidence.”
“Thanks, Mr. Helia,” Mira told him.
With a laugh, Helia told her, “If I can call you Mira, then you can just call me ‘Helia’.”
“Okay,” Mira agreed.
“Why don’t you tell me about Minerva on the way to Red Fountain? It might help calm you down. I’ve always been curious about your homeworld.”
“Okay, sounds good,” Mira agreed. “Well, for starters, Minerva is a very wild planet, almost as much so as Linfea…” The two of them talked as they walked to the specialists’ ship.
Back in the simulation room, Psyche slowly let go of Volt’s hand and walked over to stand with Griffin. “I’m ready, Miss Griffin,” she said. Griffin nodded, and with a wave of her hand, the two of them vanished.
Volt stared at the spot where his sister had been, then looked at the door his other sister had walked through. He let out a long, dejected sigh and sat right back down.
“Is something wrong?” Bloom asked.
“It’s just...they haven’t been gone longer than a minute but I miss Mira and Psyche so much already. The three of us have never been separated before. Even if we were in different parts of the palace we were still close. This the first place outside Minerva I’ve been my whole life, and already my sisters are gone,” Volt explained. “Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled to be enrolled in Alfea. I guess I wasn’t expecting them not being around.”
“Wait,” Stella gasped. “You’ve never Minerva? What kind of childhood did you have?”
“A sheltered one, especially by Minervan standards,” Volt replied. “Being royalty and an Illuminate gave my parents more than enough reason to be overprotective. It kind of messed us up in different ways; I became a nervous wreck, Mira became a hyper-focused fighting machine, and Psyche became hyperactive with an extremely short attention span. But, at the same time, we’ve become highly dependant of each other.”
“That’s...a lot to process…” Stella commented.
“It sounds a lot like my childhood back on Andros, but it definitely sounds much, much worse,” Aisha commented. “But I’m sure your confidence will grow as you learn to harness your power.”
“I certainly hope so,” Volt said, standing up. Taking a deep breath, he said, “I need to get some fresh air, so I’m going to head outside.” He started to head outside, and the Winx started to follow him. “Um, if you don’t mind, I’d like to be alone this time.”
“Volt, I don’t believe it wise for you to be on your own. Bloom will accompany you and keep you safe.”
Volt nodded silently and walked out the door. “Bloom, keep Volt safe, and please make sure he gets back before classes start. I’m worried for the poor boy, but his safety is our main priority.”
“Of course, Miss Faragonda,” Bloom said, before jogging to catch up with the young fairy. “Volt! Wait up!” she called.
Volt stopped and let her catch up before sighing, “Miss Faragonda put you up to this, didn't she, Bloom?” Bloom had never seen such sad blue eyes--or eyes as blue as Volt’s. The two of them walked together and Volt said, “I didn't expect it to be so hard…”
“Being away from your family? It might sound strange, but I can understand the feeling. My parents were frozen in the Obsidian Circle and my sister Daphne was nothing more than a ghost for the longest time. It was agonizing not being able to save them,” Bloom said. “And if this is the first time you've been separated from them, then I can only imagine how nervous you must be right now.”
They stepped into the courtyard and Volt gave Bloom a small, sad smile. “Thanks, Bloom. That makes me feel a little better.”
The two of them headed outside the gate, as Volt told Bloom stories about his and his sisters’ childhood. Bloom laughed at the story of Mira and the worms, and Volt visibly calmed down.
“I'm glad Mom and Dad let me come to Alfea,” he told Bloom. “For the first time in my life, I really feel safe.”
Suddenly, from the shadows of the forest and dark tentacle shot out and wrapped itself are Volt. “Aw, that's so sweet,” a hooded woman said. The tentacle was coming from inside her cape, and Bloom realized it was made from dark magic.
“What are you doing!? Put him down!!” Bloom shouted. “Magic Winx! Butterflix!” she transformed into her Butterflix and fired magic at the strange witch.
The witch laughed and created a small vortex that absorbed Bloom's power. “This little prince has something that I need. Tell me where the Luminous Jewels are hidden!” The witch clenched her hand and the tentacle started tightening around Volt.
“I don't know!!” Volt gasped. “They've been gone for centuries! I'm only seventeen!” The tentacle tightened and he screamed in pain.
“Volt!” Bloom shouted again.
Through pain and clenched teeth, Volt shouted, “Voltatious Magic Winx!” and transformed into his Winx. He closed his eyes and focused. An electric aura surrounded him, shocking the tentacle. It dropped him, and he fluttered in the air.
“Volt, are you okay?” Bloom asked.
Volt rubbed his head and gave her a thumbs up
Glaring at the witch, Bloom asked, “Who are you!?”
“I'm Doom,” the witch said, pulling down her hood and revealing that she looked almost exactly like Bloom. “Your worst nightmare.”
Bloom and Volt gasped in shock as Doom floated in the air. Her Wraithix gleamed and she shouted, “Inky Black Shadow Ball!” she summoned a sphere of pure darkness and fired it at Bloom, knocking her to the ground. Turning to Volt, she growled. “I'm not playing, Princey. Tell me where the Jewels are!”
“I told you! I. Don't. Know!” he summoned a ball of electricity and blasted it at Doom. Doom created another vortex, but the electricity sparked against it, as if refusing to be absorbed. Doom gasped in shock before it exploded.
Bloom sat up and watched Volt ad he fired all kinds of electric spells at Doom. She didn't seem too concerned, and looked like she was actually enjoying the fight. “Enough!” Bloom bellowed. She flew up in between them created a flaming shield to protect Volt.
“Oh, such an honest effort,” Doom cooed tauntingly. “Too bad it's all a waste. Inky Vortex!” She launched a spell into the air that fell into Bloom from above. When she was hit, Bloom felt all of her power diminish. She fell to the ground with a groan as her Butterflix disappeared once again.
“I am Doom, Witch of the Kraken's Ink, and this has been my warning to you. I will receive the Luminous Jewels and open a portal between our worlds! Oh, and Bloom, tell your friends that the Jinx are coming.” With a maniacal cackle, Doom disappeared in the swirl of her cloak.
“Bloom!” Volt shouted, flying down to her. He helped her stand and supported her on his shoulder. “It'll be okay, Bloom. Let's get you inside.”
The sight of Bloom and Volt hobbling back to the school brought everyone outside. Faragonda called a magical gurney and it floated Bloom to the nurses office. Bruised and battered himself, Volt sat down instead of brewing tea.
“Miss Faragonda...I saw her...I met her...I...i fought her…” Bloom mumbled in disbelief. “It was...horrible.”
“Who, Bloom?” Faragonda asked.
“My opposite--Doom.” Bloom explained. “She says that she is going to find the Luminous Jewels...and that the Jinx are coming.” With an exhausted sigh, Bloom fainted.
“She's the one that's been pursuing my sisters and me,” Volt explained. “I saw the Wraithix. What do you think this means, Miss Faragonda?”
“I believe that this means something terrible is coming to the Magic Dimension…” Miss Faragonda sighed.
Doom returned to the cave, where the Trix were waiting for her. “I defeated Bloom,” she told them calmly. “That means you'll accept the Wraithix, yes?” The trio of light spheres reappeared and floated around her.
“Sure you might have defeated Bloom, but you didn't destroy her when you could have! Aren't you her opposite?” Icy contradicted.
“I need her for later. So, for the time being, I can't destroy her. Accept the Wraithix and you'll have all the power you need to fight those pesky fairies.” Doom explained. “Besides, we have an agreement.”
Icy looked at her sisters. Darcy shrugged while Stormy nodded vigorously. Turning back to Doom, she said, “Fine. We accept.” The Trix held out their wrists, and Doom snapped her fingers. The lights shaped into bracelet-sized rings and floated to the Trix. In a flash of light, each of the Trix had a Wraithix. Stormy's jewel was shaped like a storm cloud, Darcy's was a swirl of darkness, and Icy's was an ice crystal.
“Now you three are ready to cause some trouble,” Doom said. The four witches began cackling in the echoic cave.