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The Prophesy Tower. Chapter 70. Write a Novel Challenge.
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The Prophesy Tower. Chapter 70. Write a Novel Challenge.

by Dalia MustafaSeptember 12, 2020

Isla stood unnaturally still, at a loss for words.

After all Queen Orla had done to ruin her life, could she really inherit her throne? It was never truly Orla’s, so taking it would finally right a decade’s old wrong. But being queen… after all that had happened.…   

Neina placed her hands on Isla’s shoulders, forcing her to meet her eyes. 

‘I support you no matter what you decide to do with the throne, but we’re still not done. No one knows what just went down, we have to go back and tell them all. Janus, Charlotte, Ryder, Frankie….’ 

‘You’re right. They deserve to know.’ Isla finished for her. Taking one last look at Queen Orla’s wrecked corpse and the inscriptions encircling her, Isla took Neina’s hands in her own and opened a portal for them to step into. 

Neina kept her eyes shut, harsh winds whipping against them as they winnowed between worlds. No matter how many times she’d been forced to go between earth and the Mors world, she would never get used to the sickening lurch her stomach always took. 

Finally, they arrived outside Charlotte’s home. Neina shot Isla a questioning look.  

‘I told you Ryder, Frankie, and Charlotte have been safe with me right? We’ve been staying at Charlotte’s for some time.’ 

The last time Neina had been over at Charlotte’s house seemed forever ago, and the last time she had seen Charlotte- 

She gasped, whirling towards Isla. ‘Is Charlotte mad at me? The way I acted at the cottage … I was horrible to her. And Janus! Is he with you too?’ 

Isla put a hand on Neina’s back. ‘Relax. Charlotte is fine. You can ask her about Janus later. What’s important is that we’re here.’ 

Neina’s tense shoulders sagged only a little, but she sighed in agreement. She approached the cream-coloured door and raised her fist to knock, only to have the door open instantly. She was immediately engulfed in a blur of red hair and pale limbs. 

It was Charlotte, her embrace knocking the wind out of Neina. Neina returned her embrace, clinging to Charlotte tightly and wordlessly. Tears she didn’t know she had left welled, pushing at the backs of her eyelids and making her throat tighten. 

‘I’m sorry’ she said, her voice barely above a whisper. 

Charlotte just held her tighter.

After a few moments, Neina stepped back, motioning for both of them to come inside. Neina was used to Charlotte having some sort of animosity towards Isla, but she figured that Isla must’ve explained things since she had been protecting them.

The apartment’s interior was warm and simple, made up of exposed brick walls and mahogany wood floors. Across the room sat Ryder and Frankie, who stood once they saw them. Before either of them could speak, Charlotte ushered them all towards the dinner table. 

‘Come eat first, you both look like death.’  

Chuckling, Neina and Isla immediately made their way to the table. 

As she devoured spoonful after spoonful of hot soup Neina couldn’t help but wonder how long had it been since she had sat down for a proper meal. Since she let herself be taken care of. It was a time that seemed a lifetime ago now, before the Mors World had turned her life upside down.

After a few minutes, and a few more helpings, Neina looked up to see everyone eating with less vigour. She could tell they were having a hard time, waiting patiently to hear what had happened. The last time that they had all been together was in the cottage, before everything … before the Queen …. and Archie… 

Neina’s throat tightened, but she knew that she had to get this over with. No matter how it made the warm feeling in her stomach turn queasy, she elbowed Isla and cleared her throat. 

‘You all probably know that I figured things out with Isla…. and about what happened to Archie because, uh, um…’ her voice came out shakier than she’d wished.  

Isla put her hand over Neina’s. 

‘Queen Orla found Neina and convinced her she was on her side to get her to finish her plan with the Prophesy Tower, but I caught up with them before Orla could do any serious damage.’ 

As Isla explained all that had happened to them in the dungeon with the queen, the stone and her mother, her voice never faltered. Neina knew how much effort that must have been taking, and yet Isla continued with quiet determination and resolve. No matter all Isla had put her through, and been through herself, Neina had to admit that Isla would make a good queen. 

Charlotte and the others interrupted only to ask questions, otherwise listening intently. After Isla concluded with the death of her mother and Queen Orla, they all sat in sombre silence. Questions seemed to hang in the air, the most prominent of them being what now? 

‘You said that you think that Neina might not be the child of the prophecy anymore right? That it might have been your mother?’ Ryder asked quietly.

Isla nodded. 

‘But that doesn’t make sense… If Neina isn’t, then how did she remodel a building from another world, down to the last detail?’ 

‘You’re right -’ Charlotte interjected ‘and what does it mean for you, now that Queen Orla’s gone? She wanted the tower to give her the power to move through time without relying on Isla’s mother. But now both of them are gone, and the tower is still being built.’ 

‘… she mentioned something about a deadline in two days. If she wasn’t lying about there being a wormhole connecting our two worlds, then it needs to be closed,’ Neina offered.

‘She made it seem like she wanted to close the wormholes. But she also wanted power. The wormhole would have had to stay open for her to keep that power, so she must have been lying about something,’ Frankie said. 

‘So do we close them or not?’ Isla asked, exasperated. 

Neina rubbed her temples, trying to make sense of everything. 

The Prophesy Tower was her life’s work; it was one of many things that had gotten her into this mess. But was it also the way out? Or, if it was already built in Mors, was building it here just strengthening the connection between the two worlds? Did it mean she had to destroy the project she had given everything to? Or was there another way? 

She stared blankly at the candles flickering in the middle of the table and zoned out as she mulled over the possibilities. No matter how focused she was on the problem at hand, she couldn’t help but be diverted by a nagging feeling at the back of her mind. 

The candlelight flickering in the warm room …. It reminded her of one of the very first places that she had stumbled upon in the Mors world. That room that was unnervingly familiar, lit with eerie candlelight atop a dining table. It was where she had last seen Freya. 

Neina remembered asking the Mors-distorted version of Freya if she was real, and her replying: ‘Do you want me to be?’

Neina remembered the moment when Neina begged Freya for forgiveness and how she had then returned to her normal state of beauty before disappearing. It was as if, in disappearing, Freya was telling her that they could finally cut ties now that everything was resolved…. 

Come to think of it, so had the apparition of pride when she solved the riddle. And the form of Envy after she met her challenge. Even Janus had left her in the Tutumni Desert after she figured out his questions! What did it mean? Was there really a way to cut ties with the Mors world, as all of them had? Just through resolve? But what exactly did she have to resolve to do?  

‘Guys I – I think I might know what to do,’ Neina stammered.

They all whirled towards her, eager to hear what answer she could possibly have come up with. 

‘I promise I’ll explain, but there’s someone we all need to talk to first. Janus.’

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The Prophesy Tower – A Novel.

To read Chapter 1, click here.

To read Chapter 2, click here.

To read Chapter 3, click here.

To read Chapter 4, click here.

To read Chapter 5, click here.

To read Chapter 6, click here.

To read Chapter 7, click here.

To read Chapter 8, click here.

To read Chapter 9, click here.

To read Chapter 10, click here.

To read Chapter 11, click here.

To read Chapter 12, click here.

To read Chapter 13, click here.

To read Chapter 14, click here.

To read Chapter 15, Click here.

To read Chapter 16, click here.

To read Chapter 17, click here.

To read Chapter 18, click here.

To read Chapter 19, click here.

To read Chapter 20, click here.

To read Chapter 21, click here.

To read Chapter 22, click here.

To read Chapter 23, click here.

To read Chapter 24, click here.

To read Chapter 26. click here.

To read Chapter 27, click here.

To read Chapter 28, click here.

To read Chapter 29, click here.

To read Chapter 30, click here.

To read Chapter 31, click here.

To read Chapter 32, click here.

To read Chapter 33, click here.

To read Chapter 34, click here.

To read Chapter 35, click here

To read Chapter 36, click here.

To read Chapter 37, click here.

To read Chapter 38, click here.

To read Chapter 39, click here.

To read Chapter 40, click here.

To read Chapter 41, click here.

To read Chapter 42, click here.

To read Chapter 43, click here.

To read Chapter 44, click here.

To read Chapter 45, click here.

To read Chapter 46, click here

To read Chapter 47, click here.

To read Chapter 48, click here.

To read Chapter 49, click here.

To read Chapter 50, click here.

To read Chapter 51, click here.

To read Chapter 52, click here.

To read Chapter 53, click here.

To read Chapter 54, click here.

To read Chapter 55, click here.

To read Chapter 56, click here.

To read Chapter 57, click here.

To read Chapter 58, click here.

To read Chapter 59, click here.

To read Chapter 60, click here.

To read Chapter 61, click here.

To read Chapter 62, click here.

To read Chapter 63, click here.

To read Chapter 64, click here.

To read Chapter 65, click here.

To read Chapter 66, click here.

To read Chapter 67, click here.

To read Chapter 68, click here.

To read Chapter 69, click here.

To read Chapter 70, click here.

About The Author
Dalia Mustafa
Dalia Mustafa is fifteen years old, Sudanese American and a Grade 10 student at the Universal American School. Ms. Mustafa writes: "I am incredibly glad I was chosen for one of the final chapters, and even more so that my wonderful English teachers pushed me to participate in this challenge. Seeing Neina and Isla grow - and following the endless twists and turns of the plot, has been hard and required lots of patience, but worth it! I wanted to bring everyone back together to reconvene and create a starting point for the resolution. I also wanted to remind readers of Neina's main goal and what happened the first time she was sent to the Mors world. That's why I decided to return to some of the earlier challenges (those exploring the sins) and the plot point of Freya disappearing. They were interesting parts of the original plot and, I hope, tying them back in will provide the next authors something solid to build off - and so work towards the conclusion of Neina's story!"

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