Henry’s bravery encouraged her and she nodded her head as he jumped. She watched his wings become visible, spreading wide as he sailed through the air.
Climbing onto the ledge Haley jumped after him.
It has been a while since teenage twins Henry and Haley Miles moved to the Bonner homestead in Idaho, stumbled onto a map and key, and discovered a portal into another world filled with fairies, magic, and danger that eventually led them to uncover the mystery behind a long-held legend. Now fairy Princess Sersha is trapped on the wrong side of the portal and her brother, Prince Valian, is injured and unable to leave the city of Roan.
After the twins are visited by Estelle, a witch, who tells them they must protect Princess Sersha at all costs, the four return to Roan through her postern. As soon as they arrive at Hilda’s brick cottage, the twins learn that Prince Valian is healing, but that the land of Wisen has been overrun by strange occurrences. Its creatures are going berserk and fights are abundant. As they begin to investigate, Haley discovers she is competing with Prince Valian’s callous nurse for his attention, even while she is being pursued by a dark, handsome sorcerer. Worse yet, now Queen Lilia has disappeared.
As the famous foursome split up in search of the missing queen, they are forced to embark on a journey into unknown territory as love, jealously, rage, and humor leave their mark upon the fairies.
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Read an Excerpt
A New Kind of BattleA Bonners Fairy Novel
By Elizabeth A. Patterson
iUniverse, Inc.Copyright © 2012 Elizabeth A. Patterson
All right reserved.
Chapter OneA Long Wait
June was normally hot in Bonners Ferry, Idaho, even in the mountains but it was a cool morning around forty degrees. It had just started raining lightly and you could smell the dirt as the drops hit the ground. Autumn birds had arrived extremely early and nestled in the trees, cackling to each other. They were the same birds Haley Miles looked forward to hearing in late September.
Her windows were open to let in the fresh air, making the room chilly, but the crackling fire in the old pot bellied stove always brought a warm feeling of contentment.
She looked over at the figure lying asleep in her bed and pondered the events of the last few hours.
Sersha was a fairy princess that lived in a palace in the city of Roan, in a land called Wisen. It existed in another realm. Fairies could enter the human world through a portal invisible to the human eye. She arrived at Haley's bedroom window, battered and bruised, then collapsed, but as she slept she began to mend as Manwan fairies have the ability to heal themselves whenever they are injured.
Disguised to look human with their fairy wings shrouded by magic, Sersha and Valian first appeared to Haley and her twin brother, Henry, at the annual autumn festival in the small town of Bonners Ferry. Sersha and her blonde haired, blue eyed, very muscular brother, Prince Valian, were desperate for help in rescuing Zeb Bonner. He was their friend and also founder of Haley's home town, a human who disappeared almost two hundred years ago and wound up in the fairy world. An evil presence they called Molock the Merciless held him captive. The twins accepted the challenge and helped rescue not only Zeb but also his wife Sarah and his daughters who had also disappeared from Bonners Ferry, presumed lost in the Kootenai River.
Haley and her family lived on the old Bonner homestead and Haley's resemblance to Zeb's wife, Sarah, was uncanny. They were each petites almost identical with thick, long, dark hair, and very beautiful and both loved adventure.
When Sersha first saw Haley she just knew that Haley would be able to help.
Haley and Henry entered the fairy world and met up with Prince Valian. He gave them an elixir which caused them to grow wings and also produced something called a dwindle drop which looked like a frozen water droplet. After the twins ate their drops, they were able to shrink in size to merely inches in height. Later, Valian's mother, Queen Lilia, bestowed upon each of them a shroud so they could hide their wings when necessary.
Haley sat and watched Sersha as she slept. She was frantic at what could have happened in the short time she and Henry had been home from Wisen.
Sersha finally stirred and rolled over just before sunrise. She turned and looked at Haley as tears began to roll down her cheeks as she sat up.
"What happened to you? How did you get hurt?" Haley asked with concern.
Sersha took a deep breath, trying to get her bearings, and began to recount everything she could remember.
"After you and Henry left Roan, Valian and I went out with several other guardians into the Spicewood realm. Word came that moss trolls had been spotted heading toward the palace so we went to check it out. We were only about twenty miles in when it happened," she sobbed.
"What?" Haley asked alarmed.
"We were ambushed, completely taken by surprise! We didn't even see them until they were right on top of us. Boar trolls! Nearly everyone was injured and we barely escaped. I was hit across my wing and could hardly fly. The other guardians had to help me; otherwise I would not have gotten away."
She paused for a moment, trying to recall every bit of information she could.
"Something happened ... Valian was ... stabbed ... he ... he ..."
"Stabbed?" Haley whispered.
"He's alive ..." Sersha began, "he's alive but ..."
"But what?" Haley asked, her voice trembling.
"He's not healing! He's not healing, and we don't know why!"
"I need to go to him," Haley said, unveiling her wings.
They jumped from Haley's west tower bedroom window and flew to the portal next to the old oak tree in the courtyard.
They waited for the glittering tower to appear, marking the entrance. Nothing happened. Haley had lost the ruby necklace she found, which Sersha told her was the key for a human to see a portal. Sersha didn't need a key, she could see them on her own, but she was having no luck either.
"I don't understand," said Sersha. "I know portals move around, but I should be able to see it."
They gave each other worried looks.
When the twins first moved onto the Bonner homestead, they found what they thought was a treasure map. Later Sersha told them the map marked the portals to what Estelle, their housekeeper, referred to as "the other side." They were also able to see more portals on the map that were invisible to humans except for Haley. They were revealed to her when she put the necklace on.
"Let's try another portal," Haley suggested.
They flew off to the old swimming hole, but could not find that entrance or any other. They arrived back at the Miles family estate, worried and confused.
So here she was once again, standing at one of the windows of her room, looking out at the valley below. She found herself there often, daydreaming, wishing she was back in Roan.
She glanced over at Sersha asleep in her bed. She was such a beautiful fairy. Her long auburn hair was as soft as the breast of a dove. She gave off an aurora of gentle kindness and harmony, yet she was vulnerable being out of her element. She slept almost the entire time since she arrived and Haley was worried about her being gone from home for too long.
Her thoughts dwelt on Valian. Was he still hurt? Was he in danger? Did he know that Sersha was trapped on this side? Was he trying to find a way to open the portals? She had deep feelings for him and felt that she was falling in love with him. She saw his rugged face in her dreams and could see affection in his pale blue eyes when he looked at her. It gave her a warm feeling in her belly and she wondered if that was what it felt like to be in love.
She stoked the fire in the stove and stared out at the low lying clouds, lost in recent memories.
She heard a shuffling outside her door and quickly drew the curtains around her four poster bed.
"Who's there?" she whispered.
"It's me," Henry answered.
With a sigh of relief she opened the door. Henry walked in followed closely by Estelle. Haley looked at Henry, questioningly.
"It's alright," Estelle said, quietly walking over to the bed and drawing back the curtains.
Haley held her breath, wondering how she was going to explain the stranger lying asleep.
"Sweet princess," Estelle whispered, as she sat on the edge of the bed.
Haley gave Henry a surprised look.
"You know her?" she asked.
"We met years ago," Estelle answered. "I became the housekeeper of this estate ten years after Zeb Bonner and his family disappeared. I have been here since. Time for my species does not run the same as humans, even while in your world."
Haley's mouth dropped open.
"I have been here for many, many years," Estelle continued. "I have watched new owners come and go, from the time the rift tore our worlds apart."
"You're a fairy?" Henry stammered.
"No, I'm a witch."
"A witch?" the twins responded together.
"Yes, I chose to stay behind after the rift while my family went to the other side."
Haley was stunned. "I had a feeling about you. Why didn't you say anything? Why didn't you tell us?" she asked.
"Would you have believed me? No, you had to find out for yourselves the truth of it," Estelle answered.
"So you've known about Roan, the palace, and everything?" Haley asked, annoyed.
"Yes. I have been there from time to time throughout the years, visiting, keeping in touch. I've known the prince and princess of Roan, and Queen Lilia for a very long time. My family lives in Roan."
Haley was astounded. A million thoughts ran through her mind. "You know Valian?" she asked.
"Quite well," Estelle answered, cheerfully.
"Your family lives in Roan?" Henry asked.
"The outskirts actually, my sister Hilda took you in for the night when you first arrived in the outskirts."
"Hilda is your sister?" the twins echoed.
"Yes," Estelle chuckled. "I love my sister and love being a witch, but I chose to stay behind because I love the humans. I am delighted by the way you all act, so free, so ready to accept the challenges of life. Somehow you are equipped with the tools and knowledge to overcome boundaries and face things head on. I am always impressed and fascinated, but not surprised. Witches have the same abilities, but do not often use them. We rely too much on magic."
Haley sat drinking in every word as Estelle continued.
"When you and your family moved onto the estate, I knew immediately that you ..." she said, looking at Haley, "would be the key to everything. That is when I knew I made the right choice in staying behind."
"How long have you known Sersha was here?" Haley asked.
"Since she arrived, however I did not wish for her to know I was here. I knew she not only needed to rest, but also to experience human behavior on this side."
They sat quietly for several minutes.
"Do you know why the portals are closed?" Haley asked.
"No, but my postern is working just fine," Estelle answered.
"What? You knew that Sersha was stuck here? Valian has been injured; no telling how badly and you haven't said a word about having a postern?" Haley demanded. She remembered learning that witches had posterns instead of portals to get from place to place without having to fly.
"Calm down," Estelle said, quietly. "I'm sorry I didn't say anything, but you have to understand, Sersha needed a little time."
"Time for what?" Haley demanded.
Henry looked at his sister in shock at the sarcasm in her voice.
"As I already said, time to heal and time with you, without any influences from the other side."
"I'm not following you," Haley responded impatiently tapping her foot.
"Sersha needed time to think things out and listen to others' opinions and ideas, mainly yours. To help her see things differently than what she is used to. By doing that, hopefully she is learning how humans think. It may help her to face what lies ahead and to make the right choices."
Haley sat thinking quietly for a few minutes. "Yes, perhaps you're right," she said softly. "You said your postern is working. Can we get through?"
"Yes. Fairies and witches can get through without assistance but humans can only get through if they are physically touching us. We just need to hold hands as we pass."
"Well let's go!" Haley exclaimed, suddenly charged, startling them.
"I think we should wait until Sersha wakes up, don't you?" Estelle asked smiling.
Haley rolled her eyes and smiled back, feeling a little guilty for her previous anger toward such a kind woman.
They reminisced about what happened after the twins went to Roan while they waited, they shared about their scary neighbor across the valley, Ike Sr., who they were sure wanted to steal their map. They spoke of their efforts in Roan to save Sarah, Zeb, and their two little daughters, Susan and Rosie. Haley told about when they met Valian at the old pub in the outskirts.
It began to grow darker outside. Thunder rumbled in the distance.
Shivering, Haley walked over and closed the window.
The clouds hung low and the rain spatter against the glass made it hard to see through.
As she started to turn around, something caught her eye. Opening the window back up, she gazed out at the valley below.
"There's something out there," she whispered.
Henry and Estelle walked over to the window.
"I thought I saw something," she said, squinting.
She scanned the valley floor. Out of the corner of her eye she saw movement. Her eyes fixed on the spot; she stared and then saw it. One of the willow trees seemed to have moved closer toward the estate.
"There, can you see it?" she pointed.
"No," Henry answered.
"It's from the other side," said Estelle quietly, taking a step back. "We have to protect the princess."
"What is it?" Henry asked. "I still can't see it."
"Look at that willow tree. It's getting closer," said Haley, becoming uneasy.
"You have to do something!" said Estelle with urgency in her voice as she walked back to the bed. "We have to protect the princess," she repeated. "No one can know she is here. You will have to go down there."
The twins exchanged worried looks.
"Come on," Henry said, stepping up onto the window ledge. "Estelle is right. We can't let anything happen to Sersha."
Henry's bravery encouraged her and she nodded her head as he jumped. She watched his wings become visible, spreading wide as he sailed through the air.
Climbing onto the ledge Haley jumped after him.
At the bottom of the bluff they moved slowly on foot, their eyes fixed on the willow which was only about twenty-five yards away.
Suddenly, a mournful wail broke the silence, making the hair on Haley's arms stand on end. The twins stood rooted to the spot as the willow slowly moved forward. It stopped ten yards away and let out another long mournful wail.
"Stop it!" Haley shouted. "Who are you and what do you want?"
The willow bent forward as if bowing.
"I am sorry," said a mournful, ghostly voice. "I did not wish to scare you. I am here seeking Haley and Henry Miles."
"What do you want with them?" Henry asked.
"They are needed back in Roan. I have come to find them."
It let out another wail, giving the twins goose bumps.
"How did you get through?" Haley asked. "The portals are sealed."
The willow gave a shudder.
"Some are working intermittently. They have not been able to fix the problem entirely yet but the portal in Heime's swamp is still working. I don't know how, but hers never sealed."
"Did you say Heime's swamp?" Haley asked suspiciously.
The willow nodded.
"Heime wouldn't by chance be a swamp hag, would she?" Haley asked, remembering the horrible creature she, Valian, Henry and Sersha had to fight after they used Roan's sacred sphere to travel back in time to save Zeb's wife and girls from being devoured by a swamp hag after they disappeared in the Kootenai River.
"Yes, she is my sister. Do you know her?"
"No I don't know her and I don't wish to. What is your name?" Haley demanded.
"I am Ruena and I don't blame you for not wanting to know her. She and I once lived in the palace but Heime wasn't satisfied with her position and wanted more power. She tried to deceive the queen but got caught. Since I was with her at the time, the queen thought I was in on it and banished the both of us. We lost our home, position, and beauty. Our wings were clipped and we were exiled. I was cursed to live out my life as a willow while Heime was sent to the swamp."
The twins exchanged glances.
"So you are here to help?" Haley asked.
"Yes. I can get them back through the portal in Heime's swamp and help them find Princess Sersha who has disappeared."
"Where is this portal?" Henry asked.
"Down at the river. It's just a short distance from here, but it's under water, I'm afraid."
A sudden realization dawned on Haley's face. She looked at Henry and saw that he had figured it out as well.
"That's where Sarah and the girls went through," Henry exclaimed. "I don't know why I didn't think of it before!"
Haley turned to Ruena.
"I am Haley, and this is my brother, Henry."
Ruena let out another wail and shook her long willow branches.
"Do you have to do that?" Haley asked. "It's unnerving."
"So you are the one who has been wailing in this valley all these years," said Henry. "Do you know the people who live here think you are the ghost of Zeb Bonner who disappeared long ago?"
Henry quickly turned toward her.
Excerpted from A New Kind of Battle by Elizabeth A. Patterson Copyright © 2012 by Elizabeth A. Patterson. Excerpted by permission of iUniverse, Inc.. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
ContentsChapter 1 A Long Wait....................1
Chapter 2 Return to Roan....................12
Chapter 3 The Secret Meeting....................23
Chapter 4 A Dream Come True....................38
Chapter 5 Creature Madness....................48
Chapter 6 The Betrayal of Roan....................66
Chapter 7 Violet's Horror....................82
Chapter 8 Journey into the Unknown....................93
Chapter 9 Dueling Princes....................108
Chapter 10 An Awakening....................127
Chapter 11 A Summon for Help....................140