Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Mines of the Minotaur

Mines of the Minotaur (Companions Quartet)

*WARNING! CONTAINS MAJOR PLOT SPOILERS!* It's been a year since the last fight with Kullervo. Connie is now thirteen.
She leaves her house, like in a trance and stops at the beach. She raises her hands and wind lashes the sea, causing monstrous waves to crash together. She roars as she raises the storm. She laughs as the wind and rain crash, making everything fly around. She points her index finger in the air and lightning hits it, making a golden light around her. Horses made of water dash around her, spraying her with water. She's jolted from her tempest-dream by the water, she gasps and crumples to the ground. Col who took shelter from the storm walks down the road after going to a party his father had. He sees a small form in a white nightgown on the street. He runs over and finds it to be Connie. He shakes her shoulder and she awakens, asking where she is. He told her that she should get home because she was soaked. She nods and they go back to her house. She grabbed a blanket and sank into the couch. Col told her he would get her some tea. He asked her what happened and she tells him she thinks she summoned the storm. And she asks him to not tell anyone. He agrees reluctantly.
A few days later at her aunts wedding-in Mr. Masterson's barn-to Mr. Clamsworthy-Col's dad-Col decides to tell Dr. Brock. Connie doesn't want him to but he does anyway. She feels terrible, she doesn't want people to think of her as a monster. Her hands crackled with power and she ran from the barn. Dr. Brock, Col, and Rat(one of Col's friends who is a companion to the frost wolf) chase after her. Dr. Brock shouts above the wind that nasty weather is brewing, and Rat asks Col what companion Connie is bonding with. Col doesn't know and he runs up to try to stop her. Dr. Brock stops him, telling Col that he'll just get killed. Col shouted Connie's name and she turned to him. She shot lightning at him, Dr. Brock, and Rat. Rat shouts, wondering what Connie's playing at. Dr. Brock says that Connie isn't playing, and if they stay they'll get fried. Argand, Connie's companion, the golden dragon, dives into the lightning and touches Connie's feet. She falls over, all power gone, as well as the lightning, and Col runs over. He shouts at her, asking her what she thinks she's doing. Dr. Brock silences Col and asks Connie what was wrong. She sobs, and tells them she's sorry over and over.
A few days later the new trustee(a trustee are the leaders of the society. I forgot to mention them in the secret of the sirens review. :p) Ivor Coddrington, announced that Connie should be put on trial for what she's done.
Dr. Brock tells Connie that Coddrington wants to see her for she did the last weekend. There's a meeting at the Masterson's farm, and Mr. Coddrington announces that he is going to question Connie. He asks her what she's been doing and she replies that she doesn't know. Mr. Coddrington says he's going to suspend her for being a danger. Dr. Brock says that Connie is just a kid, but Mr. Coddrington says that she is a Universal. Connie tells them that that's what Kullervo said, and Mr. Coddrington accuses her for communicating with him. Connie gets angry and says that he's like Kullervo because she has the gift and he hates it. Dr. Brock tells her to calm down but she doesn't. She says that Coddrington is doing Kullervo's work for him, since he's trying to get rid of her. Coddrington demands that she hand in her badges and have no more communication with the society, and that she should stay away from the society people, and the people should stay away from her. She slams her chair backwards and throws the badges at him, then she told them that Kullervo was right-she was better of without them. With that Connie ran away from the Masterson's farm. She ran to a cliff near the water and cursed the society and Mr. Coddrington. She was about to make another storm, but stopped when she heard seagulls. She dropped her hands in disgusted and went to Hugh's cottage by the shore.
 Col and Rat went to visit Connie. She was near the mines and when they walked over to her, she called for them to stand back. They said they didn't care what Coddrington said, they were going to talk to her. She told them she was dangerous. Rat just said she was and that the Society could shove their ban. She yelled at them to get back. Pounding footsteps came behind her and a minotaur grabbed her. She screamed. Col ran forward, but Connie's screams faded away as she disappeared into the mines. She shrieked and told the Minotaur to put her down, but he said he wouldn't till she was safe. She asked him what he meant. He told her that she called and he came. She says he shouldn't be talking to her, because she was banned from the society. He tells her that the mines have the shamed, the sick, and the outcasts, and that the society doesn't reach them, because they have been forgotten. She says that she's in the right place if that's the case. She asks him why he's here and he says he was wounded in battle and now is blind in one eye. She bonds with him and they talk in their minds. She asks him who else is down in the mines. He says that other people like him were down in there waiting for him. They go and she sees all the companions sick and hurting. Connie feels terrible. The minotaur says that she can heal them. She says that she can't because she's not allowed to be a Universal. He tells her that she will be a Universal, Society or no society. There is a pause, and she asks why the society has abandoned them and he says the society has lost it's way and that it needs a leader-a Universal. She tells him the society doesn't want her, let alone be the leader. Then they hear calls. The minotaur asks if she wants him to drive them off but she says that she should be getting back because they are probably worried. He tells her that he'll be there if she needs him. She asks his name and he says he doesn't have a name anymore. She leaves.
On Christmas, Gard a rock dwarf-the companion to the previous trustee Fredrick-contacts Connie through the ground and tells her that the other trustees don't approve of the expulsion and that they will have a meeting to decide the matter. Her aunt comes back from her trip with Mack(Col's father), Evelyn asks what's up and Connie says that nothing much has happened, she only got expelled from the society. Evelyn demands the whole story and Connie tells it.
Later Connie takes Gard, Col, Evelyn, Rat, Dr. Brock, Skylark, and Argand down to see the minotaur, whom she gave the name Sentinel, to guard her mind from intruders. They decide to go into Connie's mind and see if there is any problem inside her.
Everyone bonds with her and they enter her mind. Sentinel tells them to be careful, anything could happen in her mind, she could trap them, throw them out,at anytime she wishes. And that this is her labyrinth, she governs it. They walk through the door and up some stairs. The group arrives in a hall, cave painting cover the walls, and in the center of the room was a mural. It was dark, whispers came from it, as well as a chilly wind. Col asked the sentinel what it was and he told him he didn't know. Gard reached forward to touch it but Col stopped him. He told them he knew what it was. It was Kullervo's mark. He says that he had it when Kullervo had captured him. Kullervo had never broken is link with Connie. A wind blasted them and they were cast out of her mind.
A few days later Connie awoke to rain. She got up and looked outside. The water horses were going to damage the cliff if she didn't do something. She put on her slippers and shouts that the horses were there. She ran outside and yelled at them to stop. They came crashing towards her, and she got hit over and over again by the water. She struggled to pull away as the dragged her into the sea. She gasped at them to stop. Then two people hauled her away as the horses hit the three again and again. It was Mack and Eagle-Child(a trustee). Mack told her to stop them but she told him she couldn't. He told her to learn fast and she tried. She imagined a bridle. She stopped them all and made them turn back into plain water. A blanket was thrown on her. She looked around. All the trustees were there. Eagle-Child and his companion Storm-Bird(an electric bird), Kira and her companion Windfoal(a unicorn), Kinga and her companion Morjik(a dragon) and Coddrington, with his companion Hoo(a weather giant). He said for the other trustees to see it with their own eyes, she was a danger to everyone and to herself. And that she must be stopped. Connie looked at Eagle-Child. He looked very disappointed.
The next day they were going to hold a trial. Evelyn, Mack and Connie arrived on time to the Masterson's farm. They went to the barn and saw a single chair in the middle. Evelyn said that this was too much. Mack suggested they hide the chair and put hey bails for Connie's seat as well as the seats that they were going to sit in around her. Everyone arrived. Col, Dr. Brock, his companion(a dragon), Rat, Mrs. Clamsworthy, and Gard sat with her.
Mr. Coddrington accused Connie of saying that he was in league with Kullervo. Dr. Brock cut in saying that Connie was just pointing out that he was doing Kullervo's work for him. By cutting Connie away from the Society, it made her more vulnerable. Mr. Coddrington waved it away and said for them to get down to business, and that she say if she summoned the storms in November and December. Connie admitted to it but said it wasn't willfully. Coddrington interrupted her by saying he heard it all before, and that she was going to say that it wasn't like that and that she couldn't explain why. Kinga stood up and declared that he might have heard it before, but the rest of them hadn't. Coddrington agreed saying that they would find the Universal's excuses wear thin very quickly. Kinga said that they would judge that for themselves and for Connie to continue. Connie didn't answer, she was looking at the door. Kinga asked if she was listening. Connie told them that there are hundreds of creatures waiting outside, trying to bond with her, and wanting to come in. Kinga seemed astonished and said that they could come in. They opened the doors and the creatures from the mines poured in like a flood. They all took a seat behind Connie. Kinga asked who they were and Sentinel said that they were friends of the Universal and that he was the Universal's Sentinel. Eagle-Child turned to Connie and gave a her tiny smile and a small nod. Kinga told Connie to continue and she did. She said it would be hard for people to believe but that she had Kullervo's mark inside of her, and that he had access to her when she is asleep. She paused, then said. Or very angry. Coddrington jumped to his feet and said she had no proof. Gard said that they had seen it. Kira and Windfoal went over to Connie's side and asked if she couldn't be held responsible for what Kullervo was doing. Gard said that Kullervo was just waiting to break through. Coddrington spluttered. He said that she conjured the storm last night. Gard shook his head and said she wasn't outside, and her feet hadn't hit the ground, until the storm had already begun. Coddrington stubbornly said that she could have summoned it from inside the house, and they didn't know what else Universals could do. Connie looked around at everyone. She said that that no one knows, not even her. But that she knew she didn't summon the storm. Connie said she was just trying to stop the white water horses from crashing down on the cliff. And it was her word against what Coddrington thought he saw. Storm-Bird and Eagle-Child went over to Connie's side. He said he was sorry for ever doubting her. Kinga turned to everyone and said that she spoke for the trustees. She said that Connie's expulsion was no longer firm. But that they would need to see the mark for themselves. Kinga stepped forward to Connie and held out the badges. She told Connie welcome home.
The next day, Connie met with the trustees. She was fine with everyone but when Coddrington walked up she remembered he was a trustee also. She turned to Kinga and asked why Coddrington was coming. Kinga told her that all trustees should be present.
Everyone got ready. Kinga asked if Connie was and she nodded. They all followed Sentinel into Connie's labyrinth. Suddenly a wind struck. Everyone held onto their companions. Connie realized her mind was trying to get rid of them, so she tried with all her might to stop the current of wind. With a great effort, she mentally slammed a door against it. Coddrington got up and dusted himself off.  He stalked over to Sentinel. He told him to tell Connie to behave. Sentinel growled that Connie had warned them, and he was lucky it wasn't worse. Coddrington said she was doing it on purpose and it was all part of her plan. There was a loud crack and a fissure appeared under him. Eagle-Child told him he wouldn't say anything if he were him. Coddrington agreed and said he wanted to get it over with. They next stopped at a underground lake. Kira wondered if they could cross and Sentinel said it depended in the Universal. The water turned out to be ankle deep only. Coddrington asked if it was safe and Sentinel said he didn't know. Coddrington stepped in and sank. He came up spluttering, saying he couldn't touch the bottom. He almost said something when he pulled himself out on the other side, but Eagle-Child's look made him keep his mouth shut. Coddrington asked how much farther and Sentinel said they could be there in minutes or it could be hours. Eagle-Child said that Connie doesn't want them to reach their destination. Kinga muttered "come on Connie" under her breath "let us in". A wind swept through, putting out the torches and plunging them into darkness. The trustees waited in the dark. Then there was a creak and a door opened. Sentinel announced that they were there. There was a shadow of Connie sitting near the mark. Sentinel held up his hand saying the universal was there and they should not disturb her. Connie thought she could end the encounter. They had seen the mark, hadn't they? The shadow Connie got up and said "You should leave now, she wants you to leave now." Kinga asked since they had just got here, if they could look around a bit more. The shadow Connie didn't say anything. Kinga said that they should make it swift because they had outstayed their welcome.  Hoo the weather giant stepped forward. Sentinel shouted at it to not touch but the giant put his hand into the mark. Dark water poured into the cavern Everyone held onto their companions. The shadow Connie laughed and fell into the water. Sentinel shouted for everyone to end their encounters and they did abruptly. When they came to their consciousness in front of them mine they saw Evelyn, Col, and Mack lying on the ground. Connie was gone.
And on that mysterious note I'm ending the review. You MUST read this BOOK! :)