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       Canton Chronicles:Rising Power, p.1
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           Faidra-Foteini Petaniti
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Canton Chronicles:Rising Power


  Canton Chronicles: Rising Power

  Author: Faidra-Foteini Petaniti

  Copyright 2017 Faidra-Foteini Petaniti

  Thank you for downloading this e-book. This book remains the copyrighted property of the author, and may not be redistributed to others for commercial or non-commercial purposes. If you enjoyed this book, please encourage your friends to download their own copy from their favourite authorized retailer. Thank you for your support.

  This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either a product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual events or locales or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.

  Table of Contents

  Prologue

  1. The Chosen Few

  2. The First Night

  3. A Test of Fears

  4. The Ties That Bind

  5. The Bully and the Hero

  6. The Broken Man

  7. Awakening

  8. The Party

  9. An Unexpected Revelation

  10. Ambush

  11. A Most Fateful Meeting

  12. A Second Chance

  13. The Girl and Her Teacher

  14. Plan and Execution

  15. Revenge

  Epilogue

  Prologue

  20.10.1816 –North Atlantic Ocean

  The ship was sailing in the unknown seas. Its front was dividing the water in two equal sides, forming a path of foam on its way. The sea was motionless and black as coal. And silent, oh so very silent. The ship itself was silent, dead. It looked haunted as it went on, without a living soul on its deck. That impression was far from true. Almost two hundred people were sleeping on the ship’s belly, trying to warm themselves by staying close to each other, hardly escaping death. It was the end of October and the ocean breeze was freezing cold. Only a single man dared to sit on the deck, exposed, all by himself.

  His name was Edward Canton. He was a really smart man, a scientist and a visionary. He was born in a small English fish-village, which overlooked the Atlantic Ocean, 30 years ago. Since his early childhood, curiosity was his overwhelming quality, reading and experimenting his two favourite activities.

  His fellow villagers admired him, but, at the same time, feared him. His village was deeply God-fearing, and Edward was a man of thought, which often caused him great trouble.

  In his early teens, he caught the attention of the wealthy lord of the area, a wise man and a traveller. Edward was allowed to study in the man’s library, sometimes to even stay for the night, exchanging thoughts and opinions with the noble-man, which came to be sort of a mentor to him. As an additional result Edward grew close to the lord’s daughter, and later wife to be, Elisabeth, a bright and intuitive mind who matched his own perfectly. Their happiness was completed with their marriage and the birth of their only son, Jeremiah.

  Everything was smooth on his life’s surface, but secretly, the village was boiling with rage and fear. Edward was a man who believed in education, and not so much in God or his word. He also dreamt of travelling, Europe or Africa or the mystical Asia. His biggest dream however, was to see the great America, the new continent of hope and equality.

  His life became more and more dull and colourless as the years went on, sometimes even uneasy, with the closed-minded people giving him sideway looks, judging him. You don’t belong here, their eyes said. Just go and leave us alone. Slowly, a risky plan started forming in his head.

  He would leave this village with its idiotic habitants, and start a new life in a brand new continent. The plan was devised by him, his wife, and the lord’s oldest nephew and Elisabeth’s cousin, Johnathan Lucas, a widower who despised the villagers for their small, closed minds.

  Edward gave up all his money to build an amazing ship, a cruiser and fill it with food rations and equipment, enough to maintain a hundred people for two months - the time he had calculated was needed to reach the cost of North America. And sure enough there were people ready to travel, brave ones who wanted to change their lives, most of them poor farmers and fishermen, some of them wealthy adventurers.

  The ship set sail at 15th of August, filled with joy and hope. But there was no joy, nor hope in this ship anymore. More than two months had passed and the only thing they kept encountering was the eternal calmness of the sea. Edward tried to be calm for the most part of the trip, absolutely convinced of their future findings. They couldn’t be wrong, they had thought this plan through and through, their calculations made to perfection. Inside his head, the dream was close.

  The last week on the ship had taken away every last hope he had for this journey. His people were hungry, thirsty, looking like living skeletons. The food rations and the water supply was slowly coming to an end, and their moral had hit rock bottom. Three nights ago, the worst imaginable scenario came true.

  Edward was sleeping with his wife, when she started coughing. Blood. Now, she was being next to comatose almost all of the time, barely eating or talking, and he stayed at the deck of the ship, torturing himself with the cold wind of the sea. That was his punishment, and he deserved it. He took those people from their homes, their more or less happy and simple lives and led them straight in a watery grave. He was indeed cursed. He started crying silently. Oh my God, he thought. Have mercy on our poor souls. We are all going to perish in that ship, and there is nothing I can do.

  ***

  Edward… Edward… Wake up. The voice made him realise he was sleeping. He never thought it would be possible for him to fall asleep again, before the woman woke him up. Or at least he thought it was a woman. He looked left and right, underneath and beneath him. No one to be found. For some weird reason he didn’t feel scared. He was alone, in a boat with direction to nowhere. What was the worst thing that could happen? Maybe he was losing his mind. Maybe it was really the voice of God, and God was a woman after all.

  You are awake at last… Edward Canton, you’ve wondered long enough. Your travels come to an end now, right at this moment. Do you wish for that to happen?

  Now Edward was completely awake, and his logic started asking the real questions, like who the woman was and why would she want to save them.

  I am a kindred spirit Edward. Sort of an ether, if you will. I don’t want to trick you or hurt you. I want to save your people, because I sense extraordinary strength and will coming from them. You are all special, Edward. And that is the first time I say that. The woman made a cute sound, sort like a chuckle.

  Edward felt his heart warming up. He wanted to believe the woman’s words so bad. He felt so lonely, so desperate. It couldn’t get any worse than that. It was as if the ethereal being had read his thoughts. Immediately her warm, sweet voice, turned ice cold.

  Besides, what is the worst thing that can happen to you? You are in a journey to the middle of nowhere, with no means of turning back. So you have to choose now. If you say yes, I will save you. If you say no, then you can continue your journey. To oblivion.

  Edward had no strength anymore. The voice of the woman was hypnotising, taking him to happy places with tall trees, soft sand and a secure future for everyone. He didn’t want to be in this ship any longer. Every little bit of his mental strength and sanity, every bit of his common sense, was gone in this black, motionless sea. He just wanted to go with the woman. The woman who promised him a paradise.

  “Yes” he said joyless, defeated. “I will join you, whoever you might be.”

  Very well. You made the right choice, Edward.

  The woman stopped talking and although Edward could not see her, he somehow knew that she was smiling.

  For a while, nothing happened. The voice wa
s gone and the sea was as silent as ever. As Edward began thinking that the voice was a fictional fragment of his broken mind, the ship shook. Lightly, at first, and then the wind started picking up speed and the ship shook even harder. Edward had to grasp the wooden bench, as to not lose himself in the dark sea. He could hear motion sounds from below the deck, people who felt the trembling and were already shouting, terrified. And then, the most amazing thing Edward had ever witnessed, happened.

  The sea, which was in a complete standstill just seconds ago, was divided into two different sides, one where the ship was standing and the other one a few meters away from it. These two were the “reality” sides. Because, between the two stood a miracle.

  If Edward had to describe it, he would have said “a curtain made of light”, because it was indeed that very thing. An energy wave was extended to his left and right, dividing the two parts of the sea, covering Edward’s view. It felt like a swarm of faceless bodies turned into liquid and melted together, ever-moving for eternity. It was light and warm and Edward wanted to touch it, to feel it with all his existence, his fears disappearing.

  His wish quickly came true when the light curtain started pulling the ship towards it, picking up speed as it went. As they were ready to be engulfed by the blue wonder, Edward Canton closed his eyes and let go of his doubts. He was going in a better place. He knew that now. Whoever that may be. The last thing he heard was his wife screaming his name.

  Don’t worry, darling. We have reached the dream.

  ***

  You are here, Edward… Wake up… A woman’s voice again, a different one this time, sweeter, milder, with a playful, teasing undertone. Edward realised he had fallen asleep and felt like an idiot. Not only was he sleeping in the most wondrous moment of his life, he was lying face down in the sand, completely dirty and wet, his back being beaten by the powerless waves.

  Somehow, he found the strength to get back up on his feet. He looked around, mesmerized by the scenery. He was standing in a small creek, with the ship behind him. Before his eyes laid an amazing shore with golden sand, tall green trees growing at its edge, exactly the place he’d imagined just before he was engulfed in the blue light. He turned his eyes and, on his left, was an enormous, majestic mountain, with brown soil and black, edgy peaks. On his right, sporadic bushes and small-trees were shaping a fully-fledged forest, with many little paths towards, what he thought to be, the main-land’s centre.

  Edward’s train of thoughts was interrupted by the sounds behind his back. The ship, he thought, feeling guilty, and turned around, watching as the people slowly came out of its belly.

  Johnathan was one of the first to exit, Jeremy following closed on his trail. They both saw him and came near him, running to meet them, a cry of joy coming out of their mouths.

  We are saved, thought Edward, brought into paradise. Everyone was coming out of the boat now, screaming with pleasure, cheering, applauding.

  And at last, the most important person in his life, his wife, looking as beautiful as the day he first met her, as though this place gave her instantly back, what the long sea journey had stolen. She smiled sweetly at him, tiny tears in her eyes. Edward Canton was, at this moment, the happiest man on the planet.

  ***

  Canton City Centre- 17th July 50 A.D (After Discovery)

  An old, frail man was lying in a beige couch in the middle of a round, polished room. The room’s walls were painted in an equally neutral beige colour as the couch, its floor covered with sparkling white tiles.

  The eastern part of the room however, was entirely different from the rest. It was a huge one-piece of glass display, thin and polished, its sole purpose the expose of the great City of Canton, which unravelled before the very wise and very tired eyes of its leader.

  Edward Canton was a happy, old man. Happy with the way his new life had treated him from its beginning until its very end, an end that was now closing in, inevitably.

  Two days ago, he had celebrated his 81th birthday, and now, with his bones weak, his muscles atrophied and his body unable to carry him anywhere anymore, Edward felt ready to leave this earth, more than ever before.

  His dear wife had left him a long time ago, a fact that still caused him great pain. His best friend, Jonathan, had also left him last winter, after a long and pleasant life. Edward’s grandchildren and great-grandchildren were all alive and well, and they loved him very much. But deep down, he felt alone.

  There was nothing left for Edward to do anymore. He’d found this place. He gave it its name and its workforce. He was never able to find America, but had he’d discovered was a true land of miracles. Sitting in his couch in a high loft apartment, he was able to watch his beloved city and it’s very own central core, the Canton Tower, a gigantic masterpiece build at his honour. Edward felt truly happy that he would die facing it.

  He closed his eyes, letting his thoughts carry him away. People used to say, back at his little village, that death comes together with various memories of your life, passing in front of your eyes, like echoes of your past. But he realized now, that the saying wasn’t true at all. He was able to remember only one single particular moment. The moment he met God’s Deities on Earth.

  ***

  Their meeting came two weeks after their washing up on the island’s shores. Edward and his people had settled in primitive settlements near the forest, scavenging the area around them, trying to survive.

  The horses came in the middle of the night, two white females and one black stallion, and Edward watched mesmerized as Elizabeth caught his palm lightly and whispered in his ear.

  “The rulers of this Land want to see us, honey.”

  He, his wife and Jonathan Lucas rode through forest and desert, letting the proud animals guide them to their final destination, a cave in the middle of an oasis.

  Elizabeth was the first one to enter, sure on her step, somehow already aware of the wonder she was about to witness. Lucas and Edward came completely unprepared. Their eyes opened wide and their mouths fell open, and for several minutes they were unable to speak or move. In that mystical cave, they met them.

  The three beings waited for them standing all upright, three giant figures intertwined with one other. Their bodies, if one could call the energy waves that surrounded them, bodies, were ethereal and colourful, blue, red and black, ever-moving and ever-changing. Their auras reacted to the humans’ presence, swirling around them like liquid fire, growing in size, until it reached every part of the dark cave. God’s daughters.

  Lucas, Elizabeth and Edward had no choice but to look at the mystical wonder in front of their eyes. And then, suddenly, the display of power ended, with the aura of the three beings slowly retreating inside them, until they shrank in size, their bodies resembling now three regular women.

  The three of them walked towards the human company, and welcomed them in their Home. They all sat down on the hard rocky ground, the two men still shaking from shock, their eyes reflecting the magical flowing colours on the women’s bodies. After a long moment of silence, they introduced themselves.

  Elonia, the youngest of the three, was the controller of fire. Her appearance matched her abilities. She was still covered in a fiery fire-wave, not as majestic as with her giant appearance, but still shining bright, packed with a cute, sympathetic face and a fluent, sickly-sweet way of talking.

  Magenta, her older sister, protector of the earth and mountains, was a tall, stiff figure, with a permanent scowl on her face and rocky spikes all over her body. She spoke rarely, and even when she did, she used small, defined sentences, her voice coarse and hard, more like a man’s than a delicate woman’s.

  And the oldest of them, the one who would later on prove to be Edward’s most trusted companion, was Aurelia. She was the island’s main life force, the one manipulating its central power core. In Edward’s eyes, she was the most spectacular of the three, with her whole body made out of a light blue energy force, ever-flowing, lik
e the waves of the sea.

  They talked for a long while. The three of them were created by an all-powerful being they referred to as Father, which, in Edward’s mind sounded a lot like their own God. They were then, abandoned, free to roam this Island since the beginning of their time, too powerful, but also very lonely.

  “This island is a place of wonders” Aurelia said.

  Edward had to agree with her words. There was a mystical, mesmerizing quality in her voice, the one which made a man instantly trust her.

  “You will experience many things that ordinary men will never have a chance to. We have sensed lost people outside of the Island’ barriers before, but you are really the first ones who deserved to enter it.”

  Aurelia was timid and sweet in her words, like a caring mother.

  “You see, we are the essential life forces of this Island. But truth is, we can’t really do much in physical terms. Our spirits are powerful, but we have no bodies.”

  Jonathan laughed in her remark, despite of himself, earning a frightful look from Magenta.

  “My dear, why would you even want a body, when you can move mountains with your will?”

  Aurelia looked at him with compassion and smiled.

  “I understand how it must feel for you. How weird and out of the ordinary. You have to realise something, however. It may seem that we have all the power in the world, but we cannot walk, run, have fun, procreate, live. We cannot even touch each other.”

  To prove her point she extended her hand and moved it towards Elonia. It went right through her sister’s face, like a spirit limb, and Edward felt a clench in his heart. What was the point of being able to swift entire continents, if you were unable to touch the person you love the most? What was the point of even living?

  Aurelia nodded, as if reading his thoughts, and let her hand fall to her side once again.

  “We want to experience that feeling, the feeling of actually being alive. To have a connection with the outside world. There is only one way for us to truly live.”

  Aurelia’s eyes inexplicably turned on his wife and the smile widened, her eyes shining. It made Edward uncomfortable for a reason, but he shook the feeling seconds later. Elizabeth looked at Aurelia, brave and defiant. He felt the hairs on his body rising, even before his wife open her mouth to speak.

 
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