Guardian of Atlantis (The Children of Atlantis)

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Authors: Annie Rachel Cole
“I’m just excited she’s really here and I’m right.”
    “Raven, we’re here to help you.” Leslie held out her hand to Raven.
    “ I’ve experienced what kind of help you get around here. No thanks.” Raven shifted her weight off of her injured leg.
    “Raven, we know you have the key codes to Atlantis. There was a lot of speculation yesterday. But we are here to help you. We don’t want the key codes to fall into the hands of anyone who would use Atlantis to destroy the world. And Zeus is the wrong hands.” Leslie crossed her right arm over her heart. Her hand curled into a fist. She dropped to her left knee. “I pledge my loyalty to you, Raven Weir, daughter and guardian of Atlantis.”
    “What are you doing?” Raven asked in disbelief. The next second, Ari and Bree crossed their hearts, dropped to their knees before Raven and recited the oath. Raven shook her head. “Get up! This is ridiculous. Especially right now.”
    Marley roared. The doors rattled harder.
    “Uh, guys? I think we’ve got a really big problem.” Raven stared at the monster on the other side of the door. “Yuck! What’s that smell?” Raven covered her nose and mouth to keep out the stench of rotten eggs.
    Leslie stood up and moved to stand next to Raven. “Hellhound. We have to go before he fully shifts. There will be no stopping him when he does.” She grabbed Raven’s arm and pulled her away from the doors. “Bree. Ari. Create an obstacle to keep it busy when it breaks through the doorway.”
    The girls jumped to their feet. Ari put her hands on Bree’s shoulders. Bree closed her eyes and she whispered. “Ancient forest who once ruled the land, I call to thee to awaken and open your hand. Your daughters are in danger. Hear our cries. Awaken from your slumber. Protect your children. Arise.”
    The floor trembled.
    The tiles rattled.
    Grass, trees, vines erupted from under the tiles and grew at accelerated rates. In minutes the front doors were comple tely blocked by a dense forest, a forest growing inside the school building. The growth crept toward the girls. Raven found herself standing on a thick carpet of grass instead of tiles.
    “Good job, Bree.” Ari patted the top of her head.
    “We make a good team,” said Bree. Her face turned pink.
    “How did you do that?” Raven touched one of the vines growing on the wall next to her. The thick, sweet scent of lavender and rose filled the air.
    “I’m a wood nymph,” said Bree.
    “And I’m a water nymph,” said Ari.
    “You’re nymphs. All of you? As in the nymphs in Greek mythology?” Raven looked over at Leslie, who didn’t say any thing, just nodded her head. “W a i t a minute! Isn’t your last name Waters?” she asked Bree.
    “Kind of funny when you think about it. Me being the wood nymph , and Ari being the water nymph.” Bree grinned .
    Raven shook her head. “And that oath thing?”
    “We are loyal only to you. We’ll help you anyway we can. And right now, we’ve got to get you to Professor Snyder’s classroom. You’ll be safe there, until we can figure out what to do,” said Leslie.
    “What about Meritus?” asked Raven.
    “I don’t know where she is, but I’m sure the witch is around here somewhere.” Leslie shrugged her shoulders. “Come on. We have to go.”
    Leslie took off running down the hall. Raven followed behind her as fast as her injured leg would let her go. Bree and Ari were right behind her. As soon as they passed Meritus’s classroom, they rounded a left corner, then turned right and went through an old-looking door.
    “Where are we going?” asked Raven. She paused at the top of a staircase leading down into a dimly lit hallway. Her leg ached, and she was beginning to question her decision to follow Leslie.
    “Professor Snyder. His room is one of the old classrooms in the basement. He refuses to move upstairs to one of the new ones. He probably just doesn’t want to pack everything he’s got down there.” Leslie

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