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The Sun was setting on the sky when Maya's turn arrived. The stars began to appear in the sky, and the Knights could see some constellations in the increasingly dark sky. Maya and Thalas were sitting a bit away from the other Knights, staring at the stars in quite a romantic mood.

"That one is Southern Cross..." Pointed Maya to Thalas. "...Also known as  Crux..."

The Shaman went closer to the couple with a serene countenance.

"Maya, I need you to come with me." She said. "For your problem, I think now it is the best time to solve it."

Maya nodded affirmatively and gave Thalas a shy kiss. Then, she stood up and followed the Shaman to elsewhere. Her heart was beating faster and louder than it ever bet before.

"Will she be able to give me my powers back?" Maya thought sadly. "I hope she can... Or else..."

"Don't worry..." Said Ixtab with serenity. "We will figure this out, darling..."

Suddenly, Ixtab stopped walking. The elder woman led Maya into an isolated, dark glade in which Melchior and Anael were waiting for her.

"Actually, we will figure it out." The Shaman said.

"We will do everything we can to help you, Mayacita." Said Anael with a smile.

"From a Magician to another, Maya, I won't let Mictlantecuhtli win, that's for sure." Said Melchior determinated.

"Guys... Thank you so much!" Replied Maya, who got emotional.

"Well..." The Shaman sighed when sitting on the grass. "Let's get started; I want to solve your problem and Melchior's, if possible."

"Ok." Replied Maya, anxious.

Melchior conjured a small fireball in his right hand, which acquired the magenta color when Ixtab threw the magical powder in it. Maya's heart bet faster than before, and she got even more anxious and nervous.

"Maya, take your time..." Anael said, putting his hand on her shoulder. "We are here for you."

Maya nodded affirmatively, and so did Melchior, giving her a mischievous smile and looks.

"Well... My name is Maya Altahuela, also known as Black Witch; I was born and raised in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. My parents died due to the Mitch Hurricane and my aunt and uncle took care of me as if I were their daughter. Since I do not look alike them, people always made bad comments, you know?" A tear came out of her eyes. "Sorry, guys... I have never been the brightest star, you know? People have always looked down at me, and that killed me! I... I didn't want to lose my powers, it was the only thing that was completely mine, you know? I... I need your help! I need the Corazon's help, I need your help, Shaman! Please!... Don't let my star fade away!"

She started crying, breaking the boys' hearts.

"I understand exactly how you feel..." Melchior said. "I know... I am also afraid that my star fades as well; we finally brought you back to us, and we do not have the intention of letting you go. You are Maya Altahuela and Black Witch, and one cannot live without the other."

Ixtab listened to them carefully. She became quite reflexive. Then, she looked at Anael, who had a sad countenance.

"I have an idea." She said. "But first, I need you, elite Dragon, to give me the Corazon of Guatemala free-willing. Can you do that?"

"I suppose I can..." Anael replied timidly.

"Do not be afraid - I won't steal it, if that's what's concerning you." Replied the Shaman, seeing Anael's concern in his eyes. "I know how powerful this piece is and I understand Gods entrusted you with the mission of bearing it. What I am going to do is to unleash a new side of its power in order to aid Maya. Black Witch, please continue talking. The Gods need to know what's deep inside you, so the Corazon will find a way to aid."

"Alright..." Maya sighed. "Where was I? Oh, I remember. Well, since I didn't get along with most of the kids at my age, my notebook became my best, silent friend. I wrote down everything I felt, everything that has happened to me... Things for me never sounded to become real unless I wrote it. However, since my power loss... I don't have courage to write. It... It hasn't become real to me, I can't believe this is happening!"

Ixtab stood up and lifted the Heart of Guatemala, activating its powers. The liquid Shaman-Stone began to glow and spread light in the shape of various animals, mixing its power with those emanated by the colored flame, which left Melchior's hand and joined the bright dance, spinning and twisting near them, especially near Maya. Various quetzal were formed, changing from turquoise to magenta at every cycle they performed. Melchior and Anael started smiling, bewildered at such power. The Honduran Maya, however, was looking at one mysterious light shadow, which hasn't changed to turquoise.

"I can see..." The Shaman whispered. "I can see the Gods' will. They want you to be as swift, cautions and venom as the non-legged reptiles we worship..."

The same shadow converted itself into a large, triangle headed, green and brown snake, which also had white eyes and triangle scales.

"The Guatemalan Palm-pit viper!" Anael shouted. "This must be the one! This is your sacred animal, Maya!"

"Yes..." Maya whispered. "I can see this as well..."

Ixtab let the Shaman-Stone fluctuate gently in the middle of the circle formed by her, Maya, Melchior, Anael and the light creatures. Maya closed her eyes and opened her hands. Her hair was bouncing on the gentle wind, and the snake involved her body in a powerful embrace, involving the Honduran girl in a magenta light mantle, causing the others to cover their eyes.

"Is this... The power of the Heart?" Anael asked.

On the meantime this was happening, the other Knights saw the magenta light pillar with curiosity and surprise. They haven't hesitated to come after the source of all this power.

"Corazon de Guatemala!" Maya shouted from the pillar.

All the memories regarding the last events came into her mind as the power emanating from the Heart of Guatemala changed her clothes. She could remember seeing her friends bending at the fierce, cruel power of Chalchiuhtlicue, a wicked version of her. She was the incarnation of her fears and hatred, her inner demons in only one person.

"Not anymore..." She thought. "I won't be mastered by the worst of me. No... I am my own Master!"

The light disappeared, and a revamped Black Witch was there; her Shaman Marking had a witch hat with a Quetzal behind it, and it was located on the center of her back, being one of the largest Shaman Markings so far.

She was wearing a long, black skirt with purple details in its ending; a golden belt with a turquoise half-moon as its buckle; a silky lilac pair of gloves with turquoises and light purple jewels in its ending, in the shape of a flower; a topless, shell-shaped purple bra with the Honduran flag in its ending, hanging exactly of the middle of the bra, a pair of purple and violet high heels with turquoise beads. Also, the Heart made a unique Shaman-Stone to her: it was a single piece in the shape of all five stars of the Honduran flag.

"Ay, DiĆ³s mio..." Said Maya, bewildered and happy. I can't believe this is happening..."

The, the palm-pit viper appeared once again, and it assumed the shape of the Fallen Mayan Master's Scepter, the one Chalchiuhtlicue used to cause the amount of destruction she once did.

It rapidly changed into another kind of staff. In front of Maya's eyes, the Honduran watched carefully the metamorphosis. The bones were whiter and had a light blue shade; the main circle became golden and featured the dark-blue five stars, in which the central one was darker, and the other got brighter as they got away from the middle, similar to those of Maya's Shaman-Stone.

"She is gone..." Whispered Maya with a smile. "She is gone..."

At that moment, Anael and Melchior were already able to see Maya's extreme makeover, and the other Knights arrived at the place. When she looked at all of them, especially Thalas, her smile became wider, and tears of joy came out of her golden eyes.

"Chalchiuhtlicue is no more!" Maya shouted happily. "Black Witch is back to the game, bitches!"

Ixtab discretely laughed at this statement; she then gave the Heart back to Anael and converted the other light figures into one Tarot Card, which she gave Maya.

"Today, the Gods blessed you twice." She said to Maya. "The Old Goddess Ixchel, patron of Weavers and once patron of birth, is the one who is looking after you closer than the others. I hope her powers help you find your path as a Shaman and Magician, so that your powers will never fade away."

"Thank you so much!" Said Maya, hugging the elder Shaman. "Thank you one thousand times!"

"It is getting late..." Commented Kimi, quite sleepy. "I think we should go to bed. Melchior, you are the one missing, right?"

"Well, I believe I am." Replied the red-haired Salvadorian. "However, if it is too late, I believe we can do this tomorrow, I won't mind."

"Actually, I think all of them should go to bed." Ixtab declared. She then came closer to Melchior and whispered in his ear. "For your reading, I believe it will be better if we have no witnesses. Don't interpret me wrong, but your aura needs to be evaluated with no interruptions, if possible."

"Well... Ok, if that's you need..." Melchior replied.

The Shaman guided all the other Knights back to the Shaman Camp. On the meantime, Melchior sat on the ground, looking at the starry sky; a bat flew near him, arriving just a few centimeters away from him.

"Oh, a baby bat." Melchior said after a sigh.

He then put the animal in his hands, looking at the creature.

"So small... Yet quite dangerous..." He said sadly. "I feel that we are quite similar. Am I like you?"

To Be Continued...


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