This is part two of Slave of the Phantoms. If you haven't read that yet, please do. Anyway, before I start to story I want to mention a few things.
The story will contain a bit of blood. I'm going to try to add less gore than the first story, but if you aren't comfortable with blood than don't read this story.
In case you get confused by all the characters, here is a list of the characters and what they look like:
Star: White and yellow arctic wolf with yellow star pattern (F)
Arim: Dark purple phantom with iron helmet and spiked wristbands (M)
Mari: White and light blue eagle with light purple blocky pattern (F)
Infinity: Blue snow leopard with lighter blue underbelly and dark blue spots (M)
Miaklianne (Mia): Dark green lemur with silver rings around his tail and eyes, one green eye and one red eye (M)
Arillophorum (Aril): Light and dark blue arctic wolf with green eyes, black leather necklace and purple swirls (M)
Iekika: Gray and red snow leopard with green horns, light blue eyes, wind armor and vine anklet (F)
Daymoni: Gray and white deer with blue eyes and bandage around his ear (M)
KrysisKrypt: Black creature with white eyes from a lab experiment and known as a 'Shade'. (F)
Carrot: Yellow bunny with tan splotches, green eyes, pink ears, yellow flower crown and yellow worn. (F)
Carrot (Insane): Black bunny with red fox hat, red worn, red ears, red splotches and red evil eyes. (F)
Chapter 1: A New Beginning
Star padded through Jamaa Township, fallen leaves crunching under her paws. Star sniffed the cool October air, thinking about all that had happened over the past months.
Ever since Star, Mari, and Infinity had escaped to Jamaa, things had gotten so much better. Despite the Jammers who laughed at them, tons of kind-hearted Jammers had helped them. An honorable lemur named Miaklianne (Mia for short) had helped with their injuries and let them stay at his house.
Thankfully, Mari's wing was not broken, and she had healed up quite nicely thanks to Miaklianne. Star's wound on her shoulder had healed as well. Now that she wasn't in the mucky phantom prisons, the wound had fully healed, all that was left is a thin scar.
Unfortunately, there were no signs of the other elemental Jammers yet. Mari says that they just need time, but Infinity thinks they aren't in the main eight lands of Jamaa (Not counting the ocean lands). They don't have Miaklianne's opinion, because they haven't told him about the elemental powers. Yet.
Star soon came across a grocery store and walked inside. She took a bag of carrots and walked up to the register. She put the bag on the shelf, along with the last of her gems. She sure hoped that Mia would continue to share his food with them, or else she wouldn't know what to do. Infinity had been earning the three of them gems for a while now, but everything was so expensive and Infinity wasn't earning enough gems.
Star woke up from her thoughts when the deer at the register tapped her shoulder and handed her the bag of carrots. She smiled at him as she walked out of the store. The brown leaves scattered all over the ground crunched loudly under her paws as she headed back to Miaklianne's place. October had come so quickly, and Night of the Phantoms was in a few weeks. Jammers were already decorating their yards with pumpkins, plastic spiders and fake phantoms.
As Star was walking, she saw a stray bunny lying next to a tree. She was yellow with tan splotches and green eyes, and she wore a yellow flower crown and yellow worn. Star hesitated before walking up to the bunny and asking "Are you okay?". The bunny didn't move at first, but then jumped up and grabbed her bag of carrots. The bunny started biting franticly at Star and digging her claws into her fur. Star yelped and dropped the bag of carrots on the ground. The bunny jumped off Star and started eating the carrots out of the bag.
"What did you do that for!" Star yelped, rubbing her cuts. The yellow bunny stopped eating the carrots and looked up at her. "Oh... I'm, um... Sorry." The little bunny stammered, looking fearfully at the wolf. "I... I can't help it." She gave the bag back to Star, which now only had three carrots left. Star snatched it back and was about to walk away, but turned back to the bunny.
"Well... are you okay? You could stay at my friends house for a few days if you wanted..." Star asked. She was pretty sure Infinity, Mari, and Miaklianne would be okay with it. The bunny hesitated before nervously answering. "I have to, um.... nah, I'm fine." The bunny looked at the carrots for a moment before hopping away.
Star watched the bunny wander off until she was out of sight. The wolf shrugged and padded off to Mia's house.
Star walked into Mia's house and into the living room. Miaklianne was sitting on the couch with Infinity, and Mari was preening her feathers on the oppisite side of the room. Infinity looked up at her and noticed the bag of carrots.
"Woah. I didn't know you were that hungry." Infinity said with a laugh. Mari saw the bag and frowned.
"Um, I didn't eat them all. A homeless bunny ate the rest." Star decided to leave out the part where the bunny grabbed the bag out of her paws and ate the carrots without even asking.
"Oh. And what about all those cuts?" Mari said sternly.
"Oh... I... tripped?" Star said nervously. She really didn't want to tell them that the bunny had attacked her, of all things.
"I can help." Miaklianne said. Star had totally forgotten that he was there. He rarely spoke and mostly stayed quiet. It wasn't that he was shy, he just hated small talk and meaningless conversations.
The lemur stood up and looked at Star's injuries. He had dark green fur with silver rings, he wore a red sword, brown gloves and old boots that he refused to throw away. Star already knew that he was a skilled doctor, though she was not sure why he decided to leave his home.
Star suddenly fet a strange tingling sensation where her cuts were. When she looked down, the cuts had already scabbed over. But strange enough, Mia had healed them without any medical equipment.
"Woah... how did you do that? I swear it couldn't have healed that quickly..." Star gasped, pulling her arm away. The green and silver lemur looked up at Star with his eyes wide.
Infinity and Mari looked concerned. "What's wrong, Star?" Mari asked.
"I... don't know..." Star answered nervously. Suddenly, it struck her. "Oh my... you have healing powers!" Star exclaimed.
"Great Mira! What did you say?!" Mari gasped.
Infinity shook his head. "Can someone explain what's going on, because I have no clue what is making you all gasp so much." Infinity said, scratching his head.
Miaklianne looked up at the three animals, then sighed and stood up.
"Okay, I do have healing powers." He started. "I discovered them during a test to earn a doctor's title, and my father told me nothing in my home village would satisfy me and I could use my powers for good. So I headed to Jamaa township... but I kept my powers a secret so no one could use these powers against my will." Miaklianne explained. He looked up at the three animals, hoping they'd understand. Instead, their surprised expressions turned to smiles.
"Well... I guess we have to tell him now." Infinity muttered. With that, the trio told Mia their big secret.
Chapter 2: The Vision
"Do you think he's an elemental?" Infinity asked. The sun had set not too long ago, and the trio sat in the room Miaklianne had given them to sleep in. There were three matresses spread out along the floor.
Mia had been greatly surprised when they told him that they had elemental powers and that they were trying to find the other elementals. But he wasn't as surprised as they were when he revealed his power of healing. It was obvious that he wasn't an elemental, but then why would he have magic powers?
"I'm not sure. Healing isn't really an element of nature, and the only elements were fire, ice, wind, sun, shadow, nature, rock, water and thunder. None of those are healing." Mari said, tapping her wing against her chin thoughtfully.
"But then why does he have magic powers? HOW does he have powers?" Star asked, shaking her head in confusion.
"Maybe it's a sign." Mari murmured.
"A sign of what?" Both Infinity and Star said in unison.
"A sign to show us where the other chosen ones are, or where to find them." Mari explained. Her voice was stern and commanding, which made it seem as if she was absolutely sure that that was the case.
Star slowly nodded her head, even though she was pretty sure Miaklianne hadn't been given powers just so they knew they would find an elemental soon.
"I understand what you mean, but I don't think that's the case. Maybe he can help us on our journey to find the elementals. It would be kinda silly if he had been given these incredible powers just to show us we might find a chosen one." Star thought aloud. Infinity nodded his head in agreement
"True." Mari muttered. She fluffed up her feathers and looked at the ceiling thoughtfully.
Infinity spoke up. "I think we should get to bed now. If we keep thinking so hard like this, our brains are going to explode." Infinity joked. He gave his chest a quick lick and curled up in one of the mattresses. Mari flew up to a perch on the wall and Star plopped down in her mattress.
Star woke up in a dark metal room. The horrible stench of phantoms filled her nostrils. She jerked awake and looked around. She was standing beside another phantom with full armor, and in front of her was a huge metal throne covered with spikes and engravings of phantoms. Sitting upon the throne was none other than Arim, holding a large spear crackling with electricity.
Star tried to back away, but her legs betrayed her and brought her forward instead. The phantom beside her moved forward as well, then gestured her to stop. Arim towered above them, scowling. One of his top tentacles had been ripped off and hadn't grown back, which Star had done herself.
Arim stepped off the throne and hovered just above the ground. "Bring me to the prisoner." He growled.
Star swung around and walked toward a huge metal door at the other end of the room. She tried to turn back and face Arim, but her body wouldn't obey. The phantom beside her opened the door and hovered down a long corridor. The ceiling was lined with pipes of all sizes, and a transparent tube filled with glowing green phantom tar lined each wall, filling the hallway with a green glow. Star turned around to see Arim following close behind her. His gaze was fixed on the end of the hallway.
Star turned her head back. The hallway opened up to a huge circular room. A few small pipes rain along the ground and all connected to an enormous pipe In the center of the room that stretched up from the ground to the ceiling. A section of the tube was made of glass, revealing tons of phantoms traveling up through the tube. Along the walls were many smaller pipes going up to the ceiling and disappearing into the walls. Several parts of the floor were made of glass, revealing more glowing green tar that lit up the room. And throughout the whole room, there were openings to other corridors and hallways.
The largest hallway had a big metal gate covering it. Star was able to slow down so she could peer into it, but she couldn't see what was on the other side before Arim prodded her with his spear to make her speed up.
"What are you staring at? Hurry up, guard." Arim hissed in her ear. Star lost control of her body again and moved forward against her will.
Guard? Star wondered. She hesitated before looking down at her paws. But instead, she saw tentacles. At that moment, Star realized she was dreaming, and in her dream, she was one of Arim's phantom guards.
Star turned to look at the gate again, but then she entered one of the tunnels and lost sight of it. She walked -or hovered- down the hallway for a long time before entering another room. The pipes on the walls disappeared, along with the green glow of the phantom tar. She was now in a dark room, not much bigger than the hallway, that smelled faintly of rot. It was awfully dark, and it took a while for Star to realize she was in a long, twisting cave lined with stalactites reaching up to the ceiling.
Star moved into the dark cave, and once her eyes had adjusted to the dark, she saw that some of the stalactites were made of dark purple phantom goop. She turned to see a fairly large hole in the wall of the cave, with metal bars covering it. A red panda was cowering inside, with a small dish of rotting food beside it. There was no bed in the small cell, and only a small dish of brown water. The red panda was very skinny, with every one of its ribs showing.
Star looked around and saw even more cells lining the twisting, dark cave. This prison was even worse than the one Star had been in. All the cells were dirty, dark, and unkempt. One of the imprisoned animals glanced fearfully at Star and then curled up on the rocky ground.
The other phantom guard led them to a dark cell near the back of the long cave. This part of the cave was so dark it was almost impossible to see anything more than a few feet in front of her. Unlike the other cells, this one had an extra wall of metal over the bars, with a tiny window at the top. Arim turned to Star and gestured to a key hanging on one of the stalactites. His folded his tentacles and glared at Star while she picked up the key and nervously fit it into the lock on the metal door. She heard a click and opened the door, then stepped back to let Arim pass.
The cell was so dark inside, Star could only see a faint silhouette of the animal inside. Arim hovered in front of the cell and glared at the animal inside.
"Well? Have you thought about my deal?" Arim growled. Star heard a hiss from inside the cell before the animal started talking.
"Yes. And why do you think I would accept? Half the stuff you were telling me made no sense, so why should I even think twice of it?" The prisoner's voice was hoarse and raspy. It was hard to tell whether it was a girl or a boy talking.
Arim chuckled. "First, everything I have told you, no matter how crazy it sounds, it's true. As to why you should accept, the answer is simple. You can either stand by my side, with everything you could possible want, or die in this dark, cold prison. After all, you won't last much longer without any food."
Star looked closer at the cell and realized there was no food, only a small cup of water. Whatever Arim wanted from this prisoner was very important to him.
The animal growled. "Well, I don't care! What can you give me? Your just a phantom, and there is nothing I could possible want worth joining you!" Suddenly the animal broke out into a fit of coughing.
Arim waiting until the prisoner had stopped coughing before talking again. "Well, here is what I can give you. I can give you something you never had before... a purpose. You were never loved in Jamaa, without a single purpose to serve. Jammers were nice to you just to spare your feelings. But did you ever feel truly loved? Did you every feel like you were really wanted? Did you every feel truly special, that you ever had a real purpose? I think you know the answer to that. It is a simple NO. By joining me, I can give you a purpose. I can give you what you never had before. Something no one in Jamaa can give you. By coming to stand by my side, you can have what you have always wanted. A purpose. And once I get rid of them.. you can have anything you could ever want." Arim seemed to smile as he waited for an answer from the prisoner.
There was a long time of silence before and answer came from the dark prison. "How do you know that? Your a phantom, you can't come anywhere near Jamaa."
Arim snorted. "I know what happens in Jamaa. You'd be wrong to think I don't have at least a few spies in Jamaa. Now give me an answer. This is your last chance." Arim hissed.
"You know what.. I don't care. Go ahead and do what you want.. I don't want any part in it." The animal growled.
Arim sighed, as if he knew this was going to happen. "Fine. Have it your way. Guards, take away her water and chain her down. If she escapes or harms anyone, you have permission to kill her." Arim ordered. He turned to hover away as the other guard grabbed the prisoners water dish through the bars.
Just before Arim disappeared from sight, the prisoner called out. "Wait! I accept your deal... and agree to do anything you tell me to."
Arim stopped, then slowly turned around, a triumphant look in his eye. He hovered over to the cell and held out his tentacle. "Welcome to the phantoms side." A scarred paw reached out to shake his tentacle.
Then suddenly, the whole cavern began to fade to darkness, and Star woke up with a jolt. Panting, she looked around her room, but Infinity and Mari hadn't moved from their spots. She had her real body back, but she knew she had to tell Infinity and Mari about this.
It may have just been a dream.. but she felt as if it meant something. And if it did, then it was important.
Chapter 3: Training
Star yawned and padded outside. The sun was shining, and a cool breeze drifted through the air. She was going into the backyard to practice her powers with Mari, Infinity and maybe even Mia, now that he knew about their powers. But they could only practice minor abilities because, although there was a slim chance Arim was alive, they could alert Arim of their presence.
Infinity and Mari were sitting in the shade of one of the many maple trees that lined Miaklianne's yard. Miaklianne was standing beside the fence, quietly watching them with interest. The ground was littered with fallen leaves. The maples lining Mia's yard had only a few clumps of golden brown leaves left in their branches. The leaves crunched under Star's paws as she walked through the gate and rushed into the yard.
"Sorry I'm late!" She said, sitting beside Infinity.
"It's fine." Mari muttered. She flew into the sunlight and turned to face Infinity and Star. She noted that Mari's wing was completely healed now. Since Miaklianne had revealed his magical healing powers, he had probably fully healed Mari's wing.
"So" Mari started "As I've probably told you before, in order to trigger your powers you need to do a certain thing, which can be different for the kind of magic you're using. Every Elemental has three types of powers; attack, defense, and vision. Attack powers are triggered by putting all your focus on your target, then thrusting out your paw or talons toward them, or an action similar to that. Defense magic is hardest to do, it requires being somewhat calm, and you have to be very alert and put all your focus on what you are trying to defend. Defensive powers can be very different from each other, but all have the same purpose. And lastly, visions. Visions normally aren't triggered when you want them to, but it is possible to give yourself a vision. It requires a lot of focus, and you need to be relaxed. While doing what is needed to get a vision isn't as hard to do as defensive magic, most times you don't actually get a vision. Visions most commonly occur in dreams, against your will. Now, lets try some attacks."
Visions occur in dreams? If that was true, then what could Star's dream have meant?
"Wait! Hold on, can I say something?" Star blurted out. Mari turned around to face her, folding her wings over her chest. "What do you want?"
Star hesitated. "Erm... what exactly happens.. in visions? Do they mean anything?"
Mari nodded. "While I don't know as much about visions, I do know that they always mean something, important or not. Sometimes they show things that will happen in the future, the past, and maybe the present. Some visions show things that don't actually happen, but they show something that means something else. But that is all I know." Mari explained.
Suddenly Star wasn't so sure about telling Mari her dream in front of everyone else. What if the dream was showing something, but meant something even worse? Or perhaps she didn't need to worry about it, and it had happened a long time ago. But it could also be something that was going to happen in the future.. and that would mean Arim had survived the explosion. But Mari had also said visions could mean something that wasn't very important. She could be worrying everyone about something that wasn't to worry about. I should tell this to Mari alone. Star decided.
"Anything else you need to ask?" Mari asked.
"Actually... yes." Star began, picking her words carefully. "What if Arim is out for us... the chances he survived that explosion are slim, but then why else are we being so careful about not using too much of our magic? Do you think he is alive?" Star was suddenly worried she could have angered Mari.
"Do I? No. And why would he be out for us? Did you have a vision?" Mari narrowed her eyes, looking suspicious.
Star hesitated, taken back by her reaction. "Not... really. But... I think he would be coming after us because of something he said to me. He said I would be very useful to him, and I know that meant more than just being his slave." Star remembered Arim had said something getting rid of them in her dream, but she decided not to mention that. "Arim was also pleased when I almost turned into a Phantimal, AKA the Unknown. And after the explosion, the phantoms started chasing us. Arim could have been alive and sent them after us to he could capture us again. The phantoms chased us all the way to the border of Jamaa, and they never would have done that unless Arim ordered them to." Star hoped Mari would understand.
There was a long moment of deadly silence as Mari glared at Star. Finally, she spoke. "That is true, but Arim never could have survived that explosion after we beat him up. It was bad luck that the phantoms chased us to Jamaa. Arim is dead, Star, and there is no denying it."
Star quietly growled and glared at Mari. "But your not listening, the evidence says-"
"NO! You're not listening! Arim is dead, Star! DEAD!" Mari screeched, ruffling her feathers angrily. Before Star could respond, Mari turned away and flew into the center of the yard. "Now, as I was saying before.." she glared at Star "..we are going to practice our attacks. So get over here and practice your attacks on the trees." She gestured with her wing to three trees in front of her. Miaklianne didn't look very pleased to have the trees in his yard getting destroyed, but no one dared bother Mari right then.
Infinity padded over to stand beside Mari and shot Star a sympathetic glance, too quick for Mari to see. Star stood next to Infinity, opposite of Mari. She faced the large maple in front of her and closed her eyes briefly to let her anger drain away. She concentrated on the tree in front of her, putting all her focus on her target. Then she thrust out her paw and a thin beam of light exploded from it. The beam of light soared right past the tree, but left a burn mark along the trunk.
Star turned to see Mari staring at her angrily. "Work on your aim. A blow like that couldn't harm a snail." She let out an angry sigh and glanced at Infinity, who slammed his paws to the ground, and the leaves in the tree shriveled as the water was drained out of them.
Star growled quietly and turned toward the tree in front of her. She concentrated on the center of its trunk, but her focus was clouded by anger. Star threw her paw toward the tree with as much force as she dared. For a split second, nothing happened. Then pain flared up from her paw and spread through her whole body. Star cried out, and suddenly her world turned black.
It seemed like forever once the darkness faded. Star was in Kimbara Outback, looking down across the desert from atop a cliff. As usual, there were almost no Jammers there, but something seemed off. Nothing moved, except the waterfall, and there wasn't a single animal, wild or tame, which was unusual. Suddenly the whole land shuddered.
Then there was another shudder, even stronger then the last, that seemed to shake everything for miles. The ground split open, revealing a never-ending pit of darkness. Cracks appeared all over the ground, splitting into huge crevices and ravines. The waterfall poured into one of the pits, until a rock covered the water. The earthquake got even stronger until the hospital collapsed and the debris fell into the dark cracks in the ground. Huge chunks of rock jutted out of the ground, creating even more cracks along the ground.
But the terrifying earthquake didn't seem very terrifying. There was something powerful and magical about it, as if an ancient power was rising from one the endless pits in the ground.
Then, without warning, a giant black tentacle covered Kimbara, crushing it. Star's vision faded to darkness again, and she could feel a dull throbbing pain in her head. She could hear faint voices somewhere near her, talking in urgent voices. Then her eyes snapped open to see Mari, Infinity and Miaklianne standing over her. She was still outside, laying on the ground.
"Oh my word! Star, are you okay?" Mari asked.
"Of course she's not okay! She just randomly blacked out, do you think that means she's okay?" Infinity yowled.
"I... I feel okay..." Star muttered. She sat up and rubbed her head, wondering what in Jamaa just happened. Her head still hurt, but other than that she felt fine.
"What happened?" Mia asked quietly, looking concerned. "You aren't hurt."
Star didn't know the answer to that. What exactly had happened? She had been trying to use her powers on the tree, when pain shot up her arm and she blacked out. She could have twisted her arm, but that wouldn't have been enough to knock her unconscious. Besides, Miaklianne said she wasn't injured, and wouldn't explain why her head hurt. But then the weird dream she had? Or had that been a vision?
"So? What happened?" Mari snapped. The anger had returned to her voice, and it sounded like she was still furious with Star for whatever reason.
"I don't know. I was trying to use my powers, and then my arm hurt...."
"Then you misused your powers. Be careful next time." Mari grumbled.
"Hey, she never finished." Infinity snapped, nudging Mari's wing with his paw.
Star sighed gratefully and continued. "As I was saying, pain spread up through my arm and then I blacked out, and... something happened." Star expected someone to interrupt, but they were all staring intently at her. "I had a dream... that I was in Kimbara Outback. Nothing was there, and everything was still and silent. Then I felt a shudder, and an earthquake struck. Huge chunks of rock shot up from out of the ground. Everything was torn to pieces, rocks were flying everywhere, and before it could get any worse, a huge phantom tentacle grabbed Kimbara and crushed everything. Then it all went black." Star took a deep breath and looked up at the surprised faces of her friends.
"Star, that wasn't a dream." Mari said quietly. "That was a vision."
Chapter 4: A Sign
"A... vision?" Star muttered. Two visions in one day? Mari had to be kidding!
"What else do you think I said? Yes, a vision." Mari answered, looking deadly serious.
"Sounds more like a sign to me. A sign to show us something." Infinity remarked, staring up at the sky. "Something important, that's for sure."
Mari shook her head in frustration. "Whatever it means, Star must have been using her powers wrong in order to trigger it. You need to try better next time, Star." She gave Star a quick glare, who responded with a quiet growl. Why was Mari so cranky?
Miaklianne looked eager to break the tension between Mari and Star. Quickly, he added "You should rest, Star. You look like you're in pain." Star nodded, remembering how much her head hurt.
Mari nodded as well. "Mia is right. Why don't you go rest in your room. Infinity, go with her. And while your at it, try to decipher the vision." She gave them a quick nod and lifted off into the air. Star watched her fly past the tops of the trees and wondered where she was going.
Infinity nudged Star to her paws and walked inside the house. Star followed him, with Miaklianne beside her. Star couldn't help but wondering why she had had two visions in one day. Maybe there was some sort of mistake, or was one just a normal dream? And what had Star said that had angered Mari so much? Star entered her room with Mia just a few paces behind her.
"Do you need anything for the pain? I can only heal wounds and broken bones because of the way my powers work, so you would need to take a medication for it." Miaklianne asked, sitting down beside Star.
"It's okay, I'm fine." Star answered. It was true, her headache was beginning to fade. Mia nodded and left the room.
"So." Infinity mewed after a while of silence. "What in Jamaa did you say that ticked Mari off like that? I've never seen her so angry before. I mean, she can be pretty stern, but not like that."
Star shrugged. "I don't know. It might have been something about Arim. She seemed determined to make me believe Arim is dead, but I don't understand why. Arim is her brother, why would she try to convince me, and herself, that he is gone forever? I know he is evil, but she still has to care about him a little bit." Star sighed and looked out the window, expecting to see Mari flying around out there.
"What do you think it means?" Infinity suddenly blurted out.
"The vision you had. What do you think it means?"
Star shrugged. "I really have no idea. But the whole thing unnerves me.. the earthquake, how silent Kimbara was, and the giant tentacle crushing it all. The only thing it seems to be showing is the end of the world."
"If it were the end of the world, I'd think we would all have visions of that." Infinity suddenly looked guilty, but only for a split second. He continued "And didn't you say something else happened? Something about rocks?" Infinity asked.
Star nodded. "Yeah. Big, sharp pieces of rock were coming out of the ground. Why do you ask?"
"Just wondering. Was there anything else that happened? Any little details that could mean something?" He looked up at Star expectantly, curling his tail around his paws.
"Well..." Star muttered, "There was something odd about the earthquake. It felt... magical. It didn't feel very natural. There was definitely something magical about it."
Infinity perked up and snapped his fingers. "Thats it! The earthquake wasn't a natural cause, something else caused it. Something with magic. Perhaps... an Elemental?"