Micaela Rozmarenoski is a freshman pursuing a major in English with a creative writing emphasis and a minor in Theatre. After college, she wants to go into screenwriting or creative writing of some kind. Especially interested in faeries, she combines her fascination of astronomy into her magical world of Galexia, playing with fantasy themes. Already compelled by the writing bug, Rozmarenoski has written four other stories connected to Galexia. In this fairy tale of sorts, she delves into two royal sisters infatuated by a prince while mixing in demonic and angelic forces. - Natasha Igl
Look to the sky, just past the North Star. Beyond it, there is a nearby galaxy that holds a very special star. A surface like glass covers this turquoise burning sphere, making it safe to walk on. The land is covered in tall, glass structures and forests of dark, foreign plants. Life and magic is abundant here. This special star is a magical world known as Galexia.
In a large castle in northern Galexia lived a faerie Lord and Lady with their two beautiful daughters. The youngest one was named Merci. She had a kind heart, but something evil resided in her soul. The oldest daughter was named Seraphim. She was pure of heart and soul and was born mute. Throughout Seraphim’s life, she was told that she had a very difficult chance of finding happiness. Because of this, she wouldn’t expect happiness to come to her, leaving her very depressed. Merci felt sorry for her sister, but she was secretly pleased with all the attention she received.
One day, the prince of northern Galexia, Polaris, came to Seraphim and Merci’s castle. Polaris was searching the land for a young lady to be his queen. He met many girls, but none of them were kind-hearted. Upon entering the castle’s parlor, Polaris was met by Merci and Seraphim. Polaris bowed to the girls. “Hello, misses. How are you?” he asked charmingly.
“I am doing fine, your highness. I am Merci,” Merci responded sweetly. Polaris looked to Seraphim expectantly. She blushed, and flustered, she lifted her hands to try to sign something.
“—That’s Seraphim. She’s mute, so she can’t talk,” Merci interrupted suddenly. Seraphim began to bow her head, defeated.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Seraphim,” Polaris said as he kissed her hand tenderly. Seraphim blushed again. Merci held her hand to be kissed also, and after he did, he asked, “I would love to get to know you two more. How about I spend the afternoon with one of you, and the evening with the other?”
“I will go first,” Merci proclaimed. She grabbed Polaris’s hand, and they walked out to the gardens. They had a lovely time together and talked for hours. Merci fell in love with Polaris right away. He was charming, sweet, and handsome. She was very confident that she would become his queen. Polaris liked Merci, but she seemed to be too self-centered. It may have just been that she was trying to impress him, but he was not sure. After he and Merci bid farewell, he went to find Seraphim. A servant suggested that she would be in the east tower, and if he called for her, she should come down. Polaris found his way to the east tower and called for Seraphim at the bottom of the stairwell. After a moment, she appeared, softly coming down the stairs.
“Good evening, Seraphim,” he said as he bowed. He held out his hand, and Seraphim put her hand in his, and they walked to the courtyard. “Show me where you would like to go,” Polaris told her. Seraphim was surprised, because people never asked for her opinion. They would usually tell her what she was supposed to do, not the other way around. She started to walk towards the gardens, but then she changed her mind. Past the gardens, there was a beautiful fountain in a secluded area, near the forest behind the castle. “Wow, this is magnificent! I’m surprised Merci didn’t show me this,” Polaris exclaimed. Seraphim brought up her hands to sign something, but then she paused. What if he doesn’t know sign language? she thought. Instead, she gestured to the fountain and put her hand to her chest. “Oh, this is your fountain?” Polaris asked. Seraphim nodded excitedly. He understands me! she thought. Maybe this will go better than I planned.
The two sat down on a bench in front of the fountain. “I don’t know sign language, but I’d love to learn,” Polaris said. Seraphim never met a guest who was willing to learn sign language. Her family hardly even used it. The two spent hours together, and Seraphim taught him plenty of basic phrases. Soon, they were able to have a normal conversation together. They got along very well. Seraphim had never met someone as caring and compassionate as Polaris. He accepted her for who she was from the beginning and was willing to learn how to communicate with her. Seraphim fell in love with him as well. Polaris thought that both girls were beautiful, but Seraphim was different. It wasn’t because she was mute, but because she was so good hearted. Once he took the time to get to know her, she blossomed into something miraculous. The more time he spent with Seraphim, the more he fell in love with her. He decided that he would propose to her the next day.
Hidden from Polaris’s and Seraphim’s view, Merci sat and watched them from the garden. She saw how well they got along and how they made each other smile. The longer she watched, the angrier she felt. She knew she should be happy for her sister, but something inside her wouldn’t let her. A voice inside her taunted her thoughts. “You love him, and you deserve him! Seraphim would be fine living a quiet and lonely life, but you need him!” Merci gave in to the taunts in her head and formalized a plan. She knew that if Seraphim wasn’t in the picture, Polaris would have no choice but to marry her. She didn’t want to kill Seraphim, but just make her disappear until after the wedding. Merci liked to travel in the forests, and she knew of a secluded place with a cabin where no one would find her, and the trees were too thick for Seraphim to fly her way back. Polaris would certainly announce the engagement early next day, so Seraphim would have to disappear during the night.
At the end of the night, Polaris and Seraphim bid each other good night. Polaris went into a guest bedroom on the other side of the castle, and Seraphim was about to go into her own bedroom. Just as she was about to enter her room, Merci grabbed her arm.
“Remember when we were younger, and we would go on those late-night adventures in the forest?” Merci asked. Seraphim nodded. “Well, it’s been so long, and I recently found a cool place we never explored together yet. I was wondering if you wanted to go on one last adventure, for old times’ sake?” It’s been a really long time since Merci has wanted to hang out with me, Seraphim thought. She hasn’t been as nice to me recently, but she’s my sister. She loves me, and I love her. Then she nodded. “Sounds like fun!” she signed.
The lights went out in the castle, and the sisters snuck out into the night. Once they reached the cabin, they went inside. It was completely empty, and vines grew in between the wood. “Wait here for a minute. I hid some food around here,” Merci said and left the cabin. She went back to the castle and went to bed, satisfied with how easy her plan worked out. Just before she fell asleep, she felt something glowing. She opened her eyes and saw the birthmark on her forearm emitting a soft blue light. It had never happened before. She heard it somewhere before that Galexians with birthmarks have a special meaning, but she had never heard that they can glow. Although she was confused, she put her concerns aside and fell fast asleep.
Seraphim waited for Merci to come back, but she never did. Seraphim grew afraid that her sister had gotten lost in the dark. She would have gone out and looked for Merci herself, but she didn’t want to get lost either. She laid down on the cold ground of the cabin and went to sleep.
The next morning, Polaris came to breakfast late. He flung the door open, out of breath. “Have you seen Seraphim?” he asked.
“Actually, I haven’t seen her at all this morning,” Merci responded. Her parents ordered their knights to search the entire area, but after hours of searching, she was nowhere to be found.
“I don’t understand,” Polaris told Merci, “why should she run away? I thought she liked me as much as I like her.”
“She likes to take long walks deep into the forest,” Merci responded. “She may have gotten lost, or some creature got to her.”
Polaris looked to the ground, forlorn. His father said that he needed to find a bride by sunrise today. If not, he would be stuck in an arranged marriage. He looked to Merci and sighed. She did seem kind-hearted, but it wasn’t the same as Seraphim. He didn’t have much time to wait. He walked up to the Lord and Lady. “I will take your daughter Merci as my queen.” He didn’t want it to be this way, but he had no choice. Wedding preparations began right away. She would be married that night. Merci was ecstatic. Polaris was all hers! She felt a chill creep down at her spine, and she looked down at her forearm. Her birthmark was glowing again. She calmed down a little, and the glowing went away. She didn’t understand what was going on, but she continued to ignore it.
Seraphim woke up, still alone in the cabin. She walked outside, and she couldn’t recognize where she was at all. She ventured out a bit, seeing if Merci was anywhere. I wish I could call for her, she thought. She couldn’t fly because the trees were too thick, and she traveled deeper and deeper into the forest. Suddenly, her heart dropped, and she stopped suddenly. I bet this is all a trap! Merci must have been jealous and hid me out here, and now she will marry Polaris! she thought. She fell to her knees, and she started to cry. She had never felt so betrayed. All of a sudden, she heard rustling in the foliage. She looked up and saw what looked like a ball of colorful, sparkly magic with a face. Seraphim recognized the creature as a flutterby, an ancient and sentient ball of stardust. Flutterbies are found deep in the Galexian forests, and they are great companions. “Hello there!” the first flutterby said in a high and soft voice. “I’m Vega. What is the matter?” Seraphim crossed her hand across her neck. “Oh, you can’t speak? That’s okay, I can understand any language,” Vega reassured. Seraphim explained how her sister had hid her out in the forest so she could marry Polaris.
"What is the name of your sister?” Vega asked.
“Have you by chance ever heard of the Mercian Prophesy?” Vega asked, concerned. Seraphim shook her head. Vega sighed. “I suppose this is such an ancient prophesy that maybe your people have never heard of it. The Mercian Prophesy is that a faerie born during the Syvan star while the planet Lacuna is in the northern Galexian sky will be cursed by a very dangerous demon. This is very rare; in fact, your sister is the only faerie to be born under these circumstances. The situation is, if Merci, while having this demon inside of her, becomes a queen, the demon will take full control of her body and destroy the entire world. It was probably this demon’s doing that made Merci act the way that she did.” Seraphim couldn’t believe her ears. “There is something that can stop this demon, however,” Vega added. “Follow me.”
Seraphim followed Vega to a clearing where a giant clear crystal stuck out of the ground. It was a type of crystal that Seraphim had never seen before. Overhead was a roof made of foliage, with a hole in the middle of the ceiling. “Use your magic to activate this crystal,” Vega said.
“I don’t have any magic,” Seraphim signed. Magic usually required chanting some sort of spell, and since she couldn’t speak, she assumed she didn’t have any magic.
“You do have magic. I can tell by your birthmark,” Vega said. Seraphim looked to her upper arm. Most Galexians are born with special birthmarks, but Seraphim didn’t know that had to do with magic. “You can actually use very powerful magic. The spells you can use require absolute silence. If you put your hands on that crystal and say a certain prayer, you will summon another crystal that you can use to summon a Stardust Angel. This Angel will be able to banish Merci’s demon back to their realm.”
Seraphim’s eyes grew wide. Stardust Angels were like Galexian gods. She took a deep breath and walked up to the crystal.
Vega whispered the prayer into her ear, and Seraphim recited it in her mind. Suddenly, she felt a tingling crawl through her hands and into the crystal. A light came from the hole in the ceiling and smaller crystal fell to her knees. She picked up the crystal and smiled.
“Follow me. I will take you to Polaris’s castle,” Vega said.
They reached Polaris’s castle just as the wedding was about to begin. Seraphim noticed that Merci’s arm was glowing through the sleeve of her dress. “I will create a distraction,” Vega called down to Seraphim as it floated high into the sky. Vega set off a flash of light above the ceremony. While everyone looked to see what it was, Seraphim flew to the middle of the isle, right in front of Merci. Everyone gasped at the sight of her, since they all thought she was dead.
Merci’s demon began to take control of her body. Merci’s eyes turned completely black, and she screamed at Seraphim in a distorted voice, “It’s too late! Polaris is marrying me!” Merci looked to Polaris, who looked frightened for his life.
Seraphim took the crystal and placed it in her hands. “What is this? Some kind of a joke?” Merci screamed again. Seraphim closed her eyes and said the prayer. A giant beam of light came down from the sky and from it came a beautiful angel with two magical swords on her back.
“I am the Stardust Angel Holly,” the angel stated. “Why have you called me here, Seraphim?” Seraphim pointed behind Holly to her sister, who no longer had control of her body. Dark magic surrounded her, and she levitated off the ground. Merci lunged for Seraphim. Swiftly, Holly grabbed her swords and cut the air in front of her. A huge ball of glowing white magic formed, and Holly shot it at Merci. She fell to the ground, paralyzed, and another form came from her body, seething with magic and anger. “Ama, your time in this realm is done,” Holly proclaimed and cut Ama with her swords. Ama couldn’t even say a word, and she disappeared.
Holly was gone as fast as Ama was. Seraphim rushed to her sister. Merci opened her eyes slowly, and when she saw Seraphim, they filled with tears.
“I’m so sorry. I didn’t know that Ama was controlling me. She took advantage of my jealousy and ruined everything,” Merci cried.
“It’s okay. I understand,” Seraphim signed. “I forgive you.” Merci and Seraphim hugged tightly. The wedding was cancelled, and Polaris proposed to Seraphim. Merci was no longer jealous and was very happy for her sister. She decided to wait to find her own soul mate.
Seraphim and Polaris married a month later, after Merci was better, and they lived happily ever after.