“And who are these?” Grandma Lily asked, finally looking past Steve to Chris and Jean.
“Friends of mine,” Steve replied, “from an organization dad founded for benders. They’re the ones who found me. This is Chris McGregor, and this is Jean.”
Jean nodded respectfully, but Chris stepped forward and shook Grandma’s Lily hand. “It’s a remarkable honor to meet you, ma’am,” he said, smiling winningly.
“A remarkable honour? My, my! Dial down on the charm, young man –I’m already taken.”
“Come on in then, and I’ll fix you a glass of lemonade,” Gran said, ushering them in. “I daresay you haven’t had the fresh homemade kind in years,” she peered at Chris' clothes and hair, “or ever.”
Chris chuckled again and they followed her in, shutting the door behind them. The house looked exactly like it belonged to an old lady –speck clean, bright and flowery. Steve noticed to his amusement that Jean looked quite out of ease with the normalcy of the house, its surroundings and its sole occupant. She moved uncertainly, unsure of what to do or where to go, and no longer looked even the slightest bit fierce, though every glance she threw at him was still full of dislike.
Gran led them to the sitting room and sat with them on the couches. She and Steve sat in the middle two, while Chris and Jean took the ones at the ends. Jean looked positively alarmed when the couch sank beneath her. Steve almost laughed.
“I assume you’re here for the totem,” Gran said, glancing from Jean to Chris and finally settling on Steve.
Steve and Chris nodded. Jean said “Yes, ma’am,” then cleared her throat loudly and tried to assume a hard expression. Unsuccessfully.
Gran nodded. “And do you have any idea what to do with it?”
“No,” Steve replied. “Not yet.”
Gran nodded. “I thought so. That’s the big question, isn’t it?” She mused.
Chris leaned forward. “We were hoping something would be revealed to the Incarnate when he sees or touches it. It’s a powerful mystical object, right? And Steve’s already had visions.”
“Oh, are you now?” Gran said, peering at them discerningly.
Steve shrugged. “It’s a shot. Right now, we don’t even know what it does.”
Gran nodded again. “It is a powerful mystical object all right, but the knowledge of what it does, how it works and where it comes from has been lost for countless generations. Our family legend has it that it was brought down to America by Vikings sailing across the oceans to the new world, and that the last person who wielded its power was a woman. Beyond that, we knew nothing.”
“Yet you kept it,” Chris noted, frowning.
“I believe that’s part of the magic of the totem, preserving it and ensuring it’s always where it needs to be,” Gran replied gravely. “I didn’t think much of it when I was younger myself, but once it was passed to me, it began to feel like a part of me – I could decide to get rid of it about as easily as I could decide to get rid of my own heart. Still, when the time came to pass it on to Laurel, I did so pretty easily. It wanted to go, almost as though it has a will of its own...”
Steve, Chris and Jean listened in enraptured silence, eyes slightly wide.
“Sometimes,” Gran continued, “I feel a distinct aura from the totem, portending things to come.” Her eyes flashed to Steve. “I knew it the moment you were conceived in Laurel, even before she knew it herself. The totem was no longer in my care, but the strength of its aura at that moment was such that I felt it once more. Your mother must have felt it too, but seeing as she was quite preoccupied with your father at the time, she probably thought it was something else.”
Her eyes twinkled with humour. Steve blushed.
“And now?” Jean asked quietly.
The humour vanished from Grandma Lily’s face. “And now it belongs in the Avatar's keeping,” she said solemnly. “But it is troubled. Very troubled.”
There was a beat of silence. Steve’s heart was hammering, as though he could feel the totem’s fear himself.
“Where is it?” Chris asked. His voice was heavy with awe and barely suppressed longing. It was clear he was dying to see the object for himself.
“In a moment,” Gran said. “First, there’s something I’m sure Steve will like to see. But I’m sorry, kids. This is for family only.”
Steve jerked straight, surprised. He glanced at Chris and Jean. Both looked taken utterly unawares. No one had expected anything like this.
He turned back. “What’s this about, Gran?” He asked, a bit wary.
“You’ll see,” she replied simply, rising unsteadily from the couch. “Follow me.”
Watch Here for the Next Chapter: 'Family Secrets'!
The Lost Legend series is fan fiction based off Nickelodeon's Avatar franchise.
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