Circles in the Stream

Circles in the Stream

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Overview

Circles in the Stream by Rachel Roberts, Allison Strom

Emily, Adriane, and Kara are all drawn to a secret place deep in the woods. It is much harder than it would be because Kara will not cooperate with the other two mages. There they discover a portal to another world through which strange and wondrous animals have emerged, searching desperately for the magic that will keep them alive. The animals are peaceful and good, but what follows them through the portal is pure evil. The girls have been chosen by magical beings called Fairimentals to protect the magical animals, though they do not know why. To save them and their world, the three girls must begin a quest to find the lost home of legendary magic,
Avalon, or to perish trying.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781535122344
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 07/06/2016
Pages: 196
Sales rank: 1,182,770
Product dimensions: 5.25(w) x 8.00(h) x 0.42(d)
Age Range: 8 - 12 Years

About the Author

Rachel Roberts loves magic, music, adventure, and animals. She lives in sunny southern California with two cats, Attila and Raider.

Rachel's been reading since she could first hold a book and loves getting lost in a great story. She has been a writer and editor her entire professional life. Rachel also loves music, and plays the piano, flute, and is learning to play guitar.

Avalon: Web of Magic is Rachel's first series of novels.

Read an Excerpt

Circles in the Stream


By Rachel Roberts, Allison Strom

OPEN ROAD INTEGRATED MEDIA

Copyright © 2012 Red Sky Entertainment, Inc.
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-4976-6075-5


CHAPTER 1

The big cat crouched in the grass. Dazed, she looked around the meadow and knew instantly she was no longer in the Shadowlands.

Sadness welled inside, threatening to devour any strength she had left. Her world in flames. Her family gone. She had escaped—and for what? To end it all here in a strange world, alone?

The wind picked up, hot and humid across the open field. If she could just reach the trees ... she willed her legs to run, to keep going ... but it was too late.

The creature shot from the sky, sweeping over her in a mass of wings, claws and teeth. Desperate, the cat lunged into the forest of giant oaks and stopped, breathing hard. The clean air cooled her seared lungs, but even that slight movement was agony. She had to move—find a safe place to hide.

A low growl rumbled into a twisted laugh. The creature towered over her. With a roar like thunder, it struck.


Thunder rocked across the skies, sending the three dogs into fits of howling.

Thirteen-year-old Emily Fletcher tried to calm them. "It's just a storm." But no matter what she did, they slunk low to the ground, growling and whimpering. Usually they were happy to play in the backyard with her, a daily break from their kennels at the Pet Palace. But this afternoon they ignored the ball Emily rolled out to them, pointing their noses instead toward the forested slopes in the distance.

Emily followed their gaze. Her eyes fell over the expanse of trees that met the playing fields and parkland that bordered her house. She had been in Stonehill, Pennsylvania, for eight weeks, and although she'd been an avid hiker back home in Colorado, she'd not yet begun to explore these woods. For one thing, she had no friends—for another, she'd been way too busy. Helping her mom set up Stonehill Animal Hospital and the Pet Palace animal hotel had pretty much taken up all her time. Not that Emily really minded. She loved animals, had a magic touch with them, her mom always said, and being busy kept her from being lonely. Sometimes she barely remembered that her parents were now officially divorced and she was thousands of miles from everything and everyone she knew. Sometimes she remembered all too well.

She ran a hand through her long, curly hair. Animals can sense drops in air pressure before people can, she reminded herself. That must be why the dogs are acting so strange.

Lightning flashed, splitting the sky with jagged forks. Jellybean, the Harrison family's dalmatian, began to leap up and down, barking. Pumpkin, Mrs. Stalling's little white poodle, cowered, and Emily tensed in spite of herself.

"Okay," she said, giving up. "Let's get inside."

The dogs barreled through the side door of the small barn that Emily and her mother had converted into the animal hotel. Emily herded the dogs into their kennels. Biscuit, Mr. Franklin's golden retriever, walked forward, turned backward to growl, then circled, moving forward a few more steps before turning to growl again. Jellybean threw himself at Emily and yelped loudly.

"What's wrong, guys?" Emily asked, gently pushing Jellybean back into his kennel. "What's got into you?"

Biscuit pointed her nose up to the ceiling and howled. In the back room, a cockatiel screamed.

Something else screamed.

Emily froze, stock still. What was that? She waited, her ears straining. Behind her, the dogs were near panic.

It came again, the sound ripping through her like broken glass. Emily cried out. An animal was in trouble!

Instinctively she zoomed into crisis mode. She'd been around animals ever since she turned five, the year her mom, Dr. Carolyn Fletcher, first went into veterinary practice. Emily had assisted in several emergencies: a dog that'd been shot by a hunter, a cat hit by a car. She'd seen the blood and the bones and the suffering in the animals' eyes, and it never got any easier.

Emily ran out of the barn and into the main building that housed the clinic. Her mother would need her help! She raced into the foyer and slipped on the wet floor. She looked down and gasped. Blood. Lightning flashed, suddenly illuminating her reflection in the hallway mirror as if she were a ghost. She stood there, holding her breath.

Shouting from the emergency room made her turn.

She heard her mother yell, "Put it down here!" There were sounds of scuffling; men were shouting, and an animal roared in defiance. Each scream tore through Emily, making her cringe. Still, she pushed her way inside—into pandemonium.

"Hold it still!" Carolyn ordered. Two policemen struggled to hold a wriggling tarp down on the operating table. A razor-clawed paw swept out from under the tarp, raking down a uniformed sleeve and breaking one man's grasp.

"Emily, get the hypodermic!" Carolyn shouted over the animal's yowls.

Emily remained frozen and watched as her mother drew back the tarp. Carolyn's gasp stuck in her throat.

It was a cat. An enormous cat. And it was burned—badly. Only small patches of its leopard-spotted fur remained; everywhere else, the skin was oozing blood. One of the cat's eyes was swollen shut.

"Oh, no, oh, no," Emily thought she heard herself saying over and over.

"Emily! Move it!" The animal twisted in Carolyn's arms and took a mad swipe, ripping the sleeve of her tunic. Instinctively, she jerked back, grabbing her arm.

The cat struggled to stand, but its paws slipped in the pools of its own blood. Emily stared at the awful wounds. Burns everywhere, and, on one flank, a set of deep claw marks. But what mesmerized her was the green glow that seemed to emanate— shimmering, almost bubbling—from the burned flesh.

Didn't anyone else notice? Emily wondered.

"Emily!" her mom shouted. "I need your help, do you hear me?"

Emily looked up. Shaking, she fumbled around the supply cabinet for a hypodermic, trying to get it out of its wrapping. Somehow she managed to measure out the dose of tranquilizer her mother called out to her. The cat twisted hard, letting out an awful cry. The pain lanced into Emily's chest, making her scream. The needle fell to the floor.

The cat was up on its feet, snarling. It turned to face Emily. Glaring through its one good eye, it bared razor teeth and crouched to strike.

Sadness overwhelmed Emily, deep and empty like nothing she'd ever known.

As if in a dream, she slowly moved forward.

"Keep away from it!" one of the cops shouted.

The cat looked straight at her. A hard glint of steel flashed from its gold-green eyes and Emily felt a rush of feelings wash over her: rage, hate, pain, fear and ... something else ... something Emily recognized instantly. Loss.

She stared at the cat. It's all right, you're with friends. We want to help you ... Had she spoken out loud?

The cat's expression calmed, the feral glow fading from its eyes as its muscles relaxed. Emily looked up to see her mother pulling a needle from the cat's side. The animal slid to the table, fighting to keep eye contact with Emily.

Leaning her head in close, Emily heard a whisper, a single word ... "Home."

A hand was on her shoulder, pulling her back. It was her mom, her grip firm but gentle.

"Thank you, officers. We've got everything under control now."

"You're sure you'll be okay, Doctor?" one of them asked.

"This is what we do," she replied, pulling on surgical gloves. "Where did you find this animal?"

The older of the two policemen shook his head. "We didn't find it. She did." He jerked his thumb toward the far corner of the room. "Out at the Ravenswood Preserve."

For the first time Emily noticed the dark-haired girl who stood watching, black eyes wide against tanned skin. Where had she come from?

Carolyn turned to the girl. "Any sign of what might have done this to her?"

"No." The girl's long dark hair fell over her face as she edged toward the door.

"You did the right thing, calling for help," Carolyn assured her.

"Yeah ..." The girl was out the door in a flash.

"Emily, get scrubbed. Andrea's gone for the day, so you're assisting. You know the burn drill: soak, clean, and cover." The officers had left, and her mom was all business now.

But Emily was frozen again. Home. She was sure she'd heard it. But who had said it?

"Emily!" Carolyn set down the steel trays. "What's the matter with you? Let's go! Now!"

Emily willed her legs to move. Her hip hit the side of the exam table, making it spin on its wheels. "I ... can't ... I ..." she faltered.

"If you can't help, then get out!"

Carolyn was already dousing sterile bandages with ice-cold alcohol and laying them over the worst of the burns. Emily looked from her mom to the cat, then stumbled out of the room in a daze.

Tears streamed down her cheeks as she walked out onto the hospital's covered back porch. What had happened to her in there? She had wanted to help—she really had! How could she have frozen up like that, at a critical moment, with an animal's life on the line? Never before had she acted like that—so clumsy and powerless. She hated it!

She walked into the backyard, trying to calm her breathing. She caught a glimpse of the black- haired girl running across the fields toward the forest. Something ran alongside her. It looked like a big gray dog. Emily shook her head, thinking about those awful burns. What could have hurt an animal like that? And what kind of animal was it, anyway? It looked like a leopard—but leopards didn't live in the Pennsylvania woods ... out at the Ravenswood Preserve ... Is that where it came from? Suddenly Emily shivered as a strange feeling swept over her. It felt like something horrible was approaching ... something evil ...

"Boo!"

With a shriek, Emily wheeled around—and found herself staring into the laughing face of Kevin Deacon, the fifteen-year-old who worked part-time at the hospital, cleaning out cages and caring for the animals. "Kevin, you idiot! Don't ever do that again!"

Kevin just laughed some more.

"I'm not joking!" Emily turned away so he wouldn't see how upset she really was.

Kevin's mischievous smile faded. "I heard some awful noises a minute ago." He brushed a lock of sandy hair from his forehead. "Some animal hurt pretty bad, huh?"

He could be such a jerk sometimes, but Emily had to admit that he did care about animals. "Yeah."

"Your mom's a great vet."

"I should have—I mean, yeah." Just go away and leave me alone!

"I saw that girl running away as I rode up. What was she doing here?"

"She found the animal, a cat." Emily sniffed, calming down a little.

"That girl's really weird."

"What do you mean?" Emily asked.

"She lives in the woods! At the Ravenswood Preserve."

"She lives there?" Emily eyes widened.

"Yeah, well, if the town council has anything to say about it, Ravenswood is going to be shut down."

"Why?" Emily asked.

His blue eyes sparkled as he edged closer to her. "It's haunted."

Emily laughed. "Haunted? That is so juvenile."

He shrugged. "Hey, the place used to be amazing. Old man Gardener collected all kinds of animals. We used to go there as kids, feed deer, peacocks, even monkeys. Now no one goes there. They say a monster roams the woods ..."

Emily snorted. "C'mon, Kevin, get a grip."

Kevin glanced back at the clinic. "Look, I don't know what happened to the cat in there, but from the screams and the look on your face, it's bad, right? It doesn't take a genius to figure out that it was probably attacked by the same ... thing ... that's already killed a couple of dogs."

In spite of herself, Emily shivered. "Why don't they just talk to that Gardener guy who owns the place?" she asked.

"He disappeared," Kevin whispered. "Just upped and went one day, vanished. Spooky, huh?"

"So who takes care of all the animals?"

"His caretaker, I guess. Some old woman. People say she's a witch."

"Kevin, stop it," Emily shook her head. "There are no such thing as witches." She was getting goose bumps.

"My friend Tyler saw a ghost about three weeks ago, right near the Rocking Stone."

"The what?"

"The Rocking Stone, it's been here forever. It's an Indian monument, like a lighthouse for ghosts."

Emily was trying not to let his ridiculous stories get to her.

"Something's in those woods," Kevin said slowly. "That place should be condemned."

"What would happen to the animals?" Emily asked. But Kevin was already on his way into the clinic to begin his chores.

Emily looked out to the west, where the dark clouds had broken. The sun was setting behind the forest, sending up a fiery glow.

"I don't believe in witches, monsters, or ghosts! I'm not afraid." But somehow she was.

CHAPTER 2

Emily found her mother in the lab, examining something under a microscope. At the sound of Emily's footsteps, Carolyn looked up, concerned.

Emily paused. "How is—?" She stared at her sneakers. She couldn't complete the question, afraid she'd already seen the answer on her mother's drawn face.

"She's alive," Carolyn told her. "Heavily sedated, but stable."

Emily burst into tears. "I'm so sorry!"

"Shh, okay, it's okay, sweetheart," Carolyn said, wrapping her arms around her daughter.

"I didn't help you ... You needed me and I froze!" Fresh tears ran down her face.

"Honey, it was pretty intense," Carolyn reassured her.

Emily pushed away from her mother and squared her shoulders. "I need to see her."

"Okay."

Emily walked to the door of the recovery room and, after a moment's hesitation, opened it. Inside, the room was quiet, the shades drawn, the walls lit softly by a small lamp. The cat lay in a spacious cage. An intravenous needle was taped to its shoulder, connected by a tube to a bag that contained fluids and antibiotics. The cat was almost entirely wrapped in bandages. Its breathing was labored and shallow.

Emily knelt beside the cage. "You're hurt so bad," she said. "I'm sorry I didn't help. Please don't die ... please."

As Emily spoke, the cat's breathing slowed and became more even. Its one good eye was halfway open and looking at her.

"I'm right here. I won't leave you," Emily promised.

The cat closed its eye and fell back asleep.

Carolyn walked into the room and knelt next to Emily. "She's sleeping. Breathing's regular. That's good."

Emily gave Carolyn a quick smile. She pointed to a patch of spotted fur on one of its rear paws. "What is she, a leopard?"

"I'm thinking maybe a margay, or some unusual kind of ocelot," Carolyn answered.

Emily stared at it. "What kind of animal could have made these marks?" she asked, flashing on Kevin's "monsters."

"I might have guessed a bear," Carolyn mused, "but only black bears live around here—largely vegetarian and almost never aggressive. Of course, we don't know what other kinds of bears might live on that preserve." She shook her head. "But that still doesn't explain the burns ..."

Faintly visible under the bandages, Emily noticed that green glow was still there.

"I've never seen anything like it," Carolyn continued. "The burns seem to spread out from the claw wounds ... but the only way that could be is if ..." She shook her head again. "If the claws were toxic somehow. Or—"

"What?" Emily asked.

Carolyn sighed. "The burns may not be accidental. They could have been inflicted by someone."

Emily gasped in horror. "What kind of a person would do that?"

"It may not be that. There may have been some toxic dumping in that preserve."

Emily's eyes widened. "What if other animals out there are in trouble? We have to help them!"

"Oh, no, you don't," her mom said sternly. "Don't even think about going into those woods until we find out what—or who—caused those wounds." She stood and straightened her lab coat. "I was preparing some skin samples to send to the University for analysis."

"I want to stay down here tonight, with her."

Carolyn frowned. Emily pressed on. "Burn victims benefit if they're surrounded by people who care about them."

Her mother smiled. "All right, I suppose it wouldn't hurt."

Emily smiled back.


That night, Emily dragged her sleeping bag, a careful selection of stuffed animals, and two pillows into the clinic's recovery room and set herself up as close to the cage as she could.

"I brought you Mr. Snuffles," she said softly, holding up the orange lion. "See, he's a cat, too."


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Circles in the Stream by Rachel Roberts, Allison Strom. Copyright © 2012 Red Sky Entertainment, Inc.. Excerpted by permission of OPEN ROAD INTEGRATED MEDIA.
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.

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Circles in the Stream 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 113 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Avalon, Circles in the Stream is about three girls, Emily, Adriane, and Kara, although most of the book is about the first two, because Kara isn't that important till the end of the book. Emily is the healer. She moved to Pensylvania because her parents got divorced, and she lives with her vetrenarian mother who calls her "Doc" She found her special magic stone in a pool by a magical clearing. A magical being named Phel enriched her powers, though. Adriane is the warrior. She lives with her indian Gran on an animal preserve. Her special stone is in the shape of a wolf's paw, and she is very tough. Adriane is my favorite out of the three "mages" We don't know that much about Kara, but she is the blazing star and her father is the mayor. She has not recived her special stone yet, but she hopes it will be a diamond. She can be a little bit bossy, and she does not get along well with Adriane. The book is about three earth teenagers who discover they have magical powers with the help of Ozzie, an elf from another dimension that has taken on the form of a ferret who has been chosen by magical beings called Fairymentals (I'm sorry I can't spell that right.) to find three "mages" that will help save the magical creatures that have evacuated their dimension because of the black fire, a substance that falls from the sky and burns everything that it touches. To do so, they must locate the home of all magic, the dimension of Avalon. But first they have to save the magical animals from a chimera-then the animal preserve from being destroyed. This was a magical book that was very gripping. I cannot wait to read the whole series! I reccomend this book to ages eight to eleven. I hope this review was helpful to those wondering whether to get the book or not.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this series! Avalon is exciting and thrilling. The illustrations are pretty good too. I like sharing it with my friends and reading them for fun. My favorite characters are Emily, Adriane, and Stormbringer. Whenever I read this book, I can't put it down because I am obsessed with fantasy. So far, I'm on the third book, Cry of the Wolf. They are easy to read and are good for learning about yourself.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
All avalon books are10,000,000,000 stars just don't skip it won't make any sense Totally recomend;)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am 9,and I only read up to book five,and its awsome so farIt.I'm only waiting for my sister to finish the book so I can start and finish it as well.This action pacted book will thrill your brain.BOOKS ROCK!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this book when I was a child, and I still definitely recommend it to young girls every where.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this seires!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I could not put the book down i cant wait to read the 2 one!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LONG LIVE AVALON: WEB OF MAGIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Her is some stuff on the three main girls in the series. Emily the healer-. Emily's mom is a vet. Emily's parents are divorced. It is told in The Song Of The Uincorn that Emily's dad has a ranch. Emily has red curly hair. It is told that Emily has a thing with alot of anmals. Adriane the warrior- Adriane lives with her grandma she calls gran. Adriane's parents are traveling the world do to their job. Adriane's Gran calls her Little Bird. Adriane is told to have a friendship with StormBringer a mistwolf. Adriane's was the first one to find her gem. Adriane's gem is told to be wolf paw shaped. Adriane has jet black hair and dark eyes. Kara the blazeing star- Kara is told to have long blonde hair. Kara does not have a gem yet. Kara and Adriane do not get along as well as Emily and Kara do. Kara is the last to found out about Avalon. Kara is told to be always dressing in all pink. Kara is told to be a little rude at some times. Kara's dad is the mayor of Ravenswood. Kara is given a gift by phel ( not going to say who phel is sorry read story to find out) to use magic with out a gem by useing the magic out of Adriane and Emilys gems. Thank you for reading READ AVALON: WEB OF MAGIC SERIES!!!!!!! Godsgirl and fan of avalon web of magic series
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Really a good book for kids
Isabella Spagnuolo More than 1 year ago
I bought the book in paper and I fell in love with it. I gave the book to mmy friend who needed a book and she loves it too. I'm like Adriane, she is like kara, and ouur other friend, who holds us together, is like emily. So we think its apropreate and really good.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book sooooooo much
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
THIS SERIES IS AWESOME! FIRST BOOK AMAZING! GO PHEL AND OZZIE! ADRIANE MY FAV! GO STORM TO!!!!!!! READ IT! YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It was very good magic is amazin as Adrein Emily and Krar see it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The author is not absured!!!!! This series is amazing!!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book it is the boom u should read it!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book- the characters are awesome. First there is Emily the healer- she has a bond with all animals. Her stone is blue and green, even though throughout the book, all of their stones kind of change colors. She is kind- the peacemaker of the group. Then there is Adriane the warrior. Her stone is shaped like a wolf's paw, and it is gold. She is strong and independent, and she is my favorite. Then there is Kara the blazing star- the power shopper. She doesn't have a stone for a while, and then she gets a unicorn horn for her stone. They stay in an animal preserve that doesnt onlyhave animals, but has magical animals too. I would tell you more, cause I have the book, like, memorized but I dont want to spoil it for the people who havent read it- this is a review after all- sorry all you awesome people who have read it- and for those of you who havent read it, read it so that you can one those awesome people who have actually read the best book in the world.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is the best series I have every read. I love Phel. And I love Ozzie. This is a must read book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tabetha Florencio More than 1 year ago
its been 5 years since i read this bookand its still one of my favorite books. Keep it up. <<3
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I have read up to book 3 it is awsome so far.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very good and kepp it up
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book because it has magic animals and adventure. I would recamend this book to 11 and older unless you are a great reader. And this book is a great deal
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved this book . If u like action and animals this book is purrfect for you . It is a little sad but really good. I think it is too much for kids who are sensetive . I LOVED IT..