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Master of BalanceTHE LINK Book Three.

The story continues - two children are missing and Talif is assigned to the search-team to find them. Frydon is ‘caged’ due to her being completely deranged and violent and when Talif comes across a purplish stone that emits unbalanced energy, she suspects a connection.

A total of four children are now missing - and Talif follows her instinct and enters a cavern and finds an underground world where the children are imprisoned by the wicked sorcerer, Regix, who controls them with the energy-essence of the stones, the stia, that they picked up.

He intones his domain through the power of Telesma, a purple petra, and Talif feels its insidious influence by experiencing a purple mental haze which inhibits her thinking clearly. However, by hiding in the many passageways, she makes secret contact with the children who are alive and safe, and manages to send a mental thought message to Master Vaek of the situation but unfortunately, Regix, also tunes into the energy and sends his brutes to find the intruder. Just in time, Master Vaek comes to the rescue and confronts Regix in his Audience Chamber just as he is in the midst of an incantation, and completely surprises him; those ghastly purple ovoids followed Talif for an instant, until Vaek spoke.

Talif had never heard Vaek speak like that. It was absolutely without doubt power personified. A fierce battle underground in the passages ensued whilst Vaek and Talif are rescuing the children but they continue to escape even though Talif is savaged on her arm by one of the brutes who strikes her with his barbed knout. Vaek releases the water reservoir and most of the attacking praetorians are drowned but not before Vaek and Talif, with the children, reach the outside entrance safely.

Vaek seals the entrance to the cavern with a huge boulder and balances the energy field around the area and after the children are safely back with their parents, he heals them too from the insidious controlling energies of Regix. He also heals the arm of Talif so that the wound shows no scar. Then clears Frydon of the influences affecting her and buries the stone she was holding, much to the relief of all concerned.

Vaek addresses the Assembly and explains the cause of the imbalances and the story ends with Kareth, the guardian of Talif, explaining to her that she must go with Master Vaek, the Master of Balance, to continue her learning from him, by saying, ‘It is time for the fledging to leave the nest. Fly straight and sure, little bird. You could not follow stronger wings’.

That was ‘The Link’!