Richard Malkin immediately released his grip on Lysergic Oldham’s hands, closed his eyes, and leaned back in his wheelchair, exhausted.

“Wow, major weirdorama!” Lysergic said, rubbing her sore hands.

“You okay?!” Teresa asked.

“Yeah, I’m all right,” Lysergic replied.

“I’m so sorry,” Teresa apologized.

“Its okay,” Lysergic replied, “no biggie!”

“I am tired, now” Malkin said, “I’d like to take a nap, please!”

“Okay, Grandpa,” Teresa answered, “I’ll wheel you back.”

Teresa then proceeded to take Richard Malkin back to his room, but just before he left, he suddenly re-opened his eyes and glanced back towards Lysergic.

“I didn’t mean to frighten you, sweetie,” he said, “but I had to warn you! I don’t have the “psychic sight” like I used to, but with you, the aura is strong! Just beware! Beware of old friends who are not what they used to be!”

Teresa then wheeled her Grandfather back to his room.

Lysergic didn’t know what to make of it all. Teresa soon was back.

“He’s resting now,” she said.

“You gonna use your crystal ball now,” Lysergic grinned, “to try and scare the crap out of me, too!”

Teresa laughed, “No, but I will tell you what I think my Grandfather meant.”

“I hope so,” Lysergic smiled, “cause I sure as hell don’t! Oops, maybe I shouldn’t use the word “Hell” right now!”

Teresa sat down at the table across from Lysergic.

“Grandpa mentioned a “Lighthouse near”, Teresa began, “it could mean an old abandoned structure out by the pier. It used to be a lighthouse for the old river routes. Its occupied by a group of Crystallites.”

“Yeah, I remember that place!!“ Lysergic replied, “Slicer and me attended a couple of rages over there! The Crystallites were always kinda cool!”

Crystallites were a scraggily group of young Nomads, who liked to melt down gemstone crystals, then inject the liquid into their bloodstream. They claimed they could get high off the trillions of microwave transmissions that permeated the everyday airwaves, by allowing their consciousness to meld with the liquid crystal.

Lysergic had tried it once, on a dare, but she only managed to hallucinate an image of a spinning turtle, within a wooden box, on the back of a coyote! Then she remembered waking up with a splitting headache.

“But the Crystallites are pretty mellow fellows,” Lysergic noted, “they usually don’t cause trouble and they’re too spaced out to notice reality.”

“Lysergic?” Teresa asked, “Its good to see you, but I don’t need Psychic powers to know you’re back for some reason other than to talk about old times. Now, I can help you interpret what my Grandfather saw, but you tell me why you’re here and what you’re after, then maybe I can be of more help!”

Lysergic nodded. She did trust this young witch, so she filled her in on the search for the book and about some dude called Timothy Edward Friendly.

“You’re after a book?” Teresa asked.

“Yeah,” Lysergic answered, “don’t know what’s in it but it must be pretty freaking important! And what about that dude, Friendly?”

“That book may be what Grandpa referred to about something holding secrets that can be used for good or evil!” Teresa noted, “as for this Friendly, I’ve heard of him. Heard he has his own Groog gang, but he’s quite the recluse!”

“What about the bit about putting the world in danger,” Lysergic continued, “and those I know may not be who they were anymore, or something like that. And that whole ‘Devil is watching and waiting for me!!!’ Well, that definitely freaks my shadow!!!”

“All I can suggest is you start at the lighthouse,” Teresa replied.

Lysergic nodded.

“Then I’d better start tracking” Lysergic said, “thanks Teresa. Tell your grandfather thanks too. I’ll head back up and on over to that lighthouse.”

“I can take you there,” Teresa added, “be your guide!”

“No!” Lysergic sternly replied, “I don’t want to put anyone else in danger! You’ve got this place to run and your grandfather to take care of. Thanks, but no!! I’ve got to do this myself!!”

Teresa nodded, “Then let me fix you some stuff before you go!”

“Okay, awesome!” Lysergic replied, as Teresa left and headed back into her room.

Lysergic figured Teresa was going to pack her some kind of munchies for her to snack on, but she soon found out she was mistaken.

“Lysergic!!” she heard Teresa call from the other room.

Lysergic entered and saw Teresa at a large table with dozens of bowls, vials, and tubes, filled with a variety of colored liquids and powders.

“Come here!” Teresa motioned. Lysergic approached. Teresa took a small clipper and snipped a strand of Lysergic’s hair.

“What was that for?!” Lysergic asked.

“I’m mixing you some potions to take with you!” Teresa replied, as she dropped the strand of Lysergic’s hair into a vial, and mixed in with some greenish colored powdery substance.

“Uh, I always ditched Witchcraft 101!” Lysergic sarcastically replied.

Teresa laughed, “Don’t worry, all the potions I’m going to give you are self-casting. You don’t have to do a thing. Just wear them in the amulet I’m also going to give you. You’ll be under the protection of the spells!”

“No rabbit’s gonna suddenly pop out of my pocket or anything, are they?” Lysergic asked.

“No, I promise,” Teresa replied, “no rabbits! Though there may be a toad or two!!”

“Ewwwww!!!” Lysergic sputtered, at the thought.

“There, all done!!” Teresa pronounced, as she held up three colored vials, each on a silver chain.

Teresa began to explain, “As I give you each vial, I have to speak the incantation for them to be effective. So forgive the lame poetry!”

Lysergic nodded.

Teresa then began to chant, as she placed each vial around Lysergic’s neck.

First the red one.

“The power of red, can utilize the dead!”

Then a green vial.

“The power of green, will protect you in its gleam”

Then finally, the blue.

“The power of blue, will always alert you!”

Lysergic now stood with the three colored vials around her neck. She thought she might be mistaken, but she swore the vials appeared to glow.

“There! It is cast!” Teresa replied.

“Well, you were right about one thing,” Lysergic said.

“And what’s that?” Teresa wondered.

“That was some pretty lame poetry!” Lysergic giggled.

Teresa smiled, “Tell me that after you encounter the Devil!!”

Lysergic immediately stopped giggling!

Next: Chap. Twenty-One “Slipper”

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