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- While Your Ink is Still Fresh -

Guatemala City, Guatemala -- 11:45 a.m.

Maya and the rest of the Knights arrived in Guatemala a few hours after their quick stand at Salcoatitán; as she arrived at her place, her uncle and aunt rushed to receive her back home with arms wide open. They gave her another celebration and all the time they had left on that summer as a way to be part of another year of Maya's life.

The Altahuela household had their humble, yet loving party; Maya's uncle gave her a brand new set of quill pen and inks with some exquisite blends of papers for Maya to write on; Maya's aunt gave her some new clothes and a bracelet with a lot of adornments that were simply Maya in a nutshell: Cancer symbol with Aries, a quill pen, a flower, a Mayan stone engraving meaning 'Moon', another other meaning 'Fire', a third one meaning 'South' and a flag of Honduras to complete the set.

Maya hugged them with tears in her eyes; never in all her years of life had she had such an amazing time at her birthday. Never in a million of years would she have thought that the ones who once were her enemies would be the best of her friends. Maya was always a shy, gloomy person who thought she was too weird to belong anywhere; now, she was part of a marvelous group of young heroes and felt completely part of it.

She went to her room and got her journal. "Maya's Writing Lair" was its name. She opened the brand new set of quill pens and decided to debut it on her oldest and most loyal companion.

"To my Silent Friend, the Notebook,

I am on cloud nine; these past few months had been quite a roller coaster ride. Everything changed for me in a blink of an eye and sometimes I still get myself asking whether this is real or a dream. Everything changed so deeply for me that I cannot even imagine my life without Thalas, Melchior, Anael, Kaiser, Kimi and Altagracia.

I still miss Jasmine, and I miss Iracema even more. Even if we were bind together by a spell, I still believe our friendship was somehow meant to be. We gave hopes and strengths to each other every time and always bounced back stronger and better. I know life drifted us, but all changes and everything that happened as aftermath of our deeds has made me a better person.

I prayed for Iracema and Jasmine today in Salcoatitan; I prayed for Iracema's soul to find eternal rest and for Jasmine to pursue her dreams and always remember me and our friendship of old. Someday we'll all be together again. In the meantime, I'll make the best out of the chances I've been given...

Maya Altahuela."


End of 2015's Summer Summit.



- City of Quetzalcoatl -

Salcoatitán, El Salvador -- 7:15 a.m.

The Knights reached the next city at the dawn of the following day; though Maya's birthday was on the day after, they decided to proceed with the festivities, as they would still have a few free hours before going back to the regular agenda.

Kaiser's vortex led them to the city of Salcoatitán, known as "City of Quetzalcoatl"; as they passed through the city portal, which had a Quetzalcoatl figure carved into stone and painted brightly, their spirits seemed renewed somehow.

[Maya] -- This town reminds me of somewhere my uncle and aunt have told me in the past... A town a few miles away from Tegucigalpa... (Sighs, smiles). So, I know that this city has some of the most beautiful artisan works and some great pupusas to go. They also have some churches to take a loot at, and after yesterday, I... I was thinking on going there.

[Kimi] -- On the church? (Confused) Why?

[Maya] -- Some respects I'd like to pay... And a little prayer I want to make. Could you all join me?

[Altagracia] -- Of course! (Excited) I`ll take some photos! (To Anael, holding a camera) Hermano mayor, can you teach me how to use it? I was taking some photos with Maya, but I didn't understand how to use it... (Mops)

[Anael] -- (Smiles) Of course I can, mi rayo de Sol! Come on, we follow Maya and we'll take some pictures in there! (Holds Altagracia's hand)

[Melchior] -- (Shrugs) Well, it is Maya's birthday after all. I don't think a religious moment will do us harm.

[Thalas] -- Agreed. (Smiles, holds Maya's hand) Lead us the way, milady.

[Maya] -- (Shy) Sure! (Chuckles)

Maya led the group towards one of the churches: the one known as Iglesia Colonial de Salcoatitan, founded in 1824, being the oldest in the city; for it was damaged in the earthquakes that afflicted el Salvador, The Blue Moon Knights had to enter into the yellow replica of the church. It was a simple piece of Christian architecture, where some wooden benches and an altar could be found along the large aisle.

Black Witch saw there was a priest arranging the candles in the small altar to her left; she came near him and asked if she could light a candle. The priest allowed her to do so and she lit one of the candles in the center of the piece, knelt down on the floor, joined hands, closed her eyes and began her silent prayer for a friend which came to be a guarding angel...


To Be Continued...



- A Friend from the Other Side -

Anael and Maya found themselves in utter state of shock; the other Knights looked at the ghost without believing in their own eyes; was that Iracema in front of them? Was it real or just a trick played by their minds, still wounded by that terrible loss?

[Anael] -- I... I can't believe this... (Sad, shocked)

[Maya] -- (Lifts hand towards ghost) Is that you, Iracema? Is that you, mi amiga?

[Iracema] -- (Serene, eerie voice) Yes, it is... It is me. I missed you and Jasmine... Missed all of you, to be precise. (Smiles)

[Maya] -- How's that even possible? (Rubs hand in her face, drying the tears)

[Iracema] -- (Points at Anael) The Corazón. It still keeps my soul here... Maybe it is because of my dearest memories of my life, I don`t know. But I like it nevertheless... I came by to say "happy birthday", dear Maya. May your days be long and full of joy and adventures yet to come.

[Maya] -- Yours too, Iracema... I believe your soul will join us back in this realm one day.

[Iracema] -- I don`t know... (Chuckles) I like being a ghost and all. Being an observer has made me much more mature than I ever was. I have seen the mistakes of people I liked and learnt with them; perhaps, if it is for my soul to join this world again I might come back as someone much wiser for my age. (Laughs)

Iracema's spectral image came closer to the Knights; Maya left the water and joined the crowd, who gave Iracema a warm hug; for a few moments, she was able to materialize and assume a magical human form, allowing her to receive that hug. Then, they all made a circle with Maya in the middle.

[Everyone but Maya] -- Cumpleaños felices, deseamos a ti! Cumpleaños felices, deseamos a ti! Que lo pases muy bien, cumpleaños felices!

The chanted the verse about four or five times; as they did it, Iracema's spirit began to dissolve in the wind, leaving them with her blessing and best wishes. The moon shone brighter in the sky as Iracema's spirit finally disappeared. The Knights sat near the waters and watched as it reflected the moon light, creating a beautiful, transcendent scenario for them to admire and even dream about.


To be Continued...




- Laguna de Las Ninfas -

Apaneca, El Salvador -- 7:15 p.m

As the hours passed by, Kaiser suggested getting into a safer place and use the vortexes once more; Maya's birthday was passing faster than they wanted and there was plenty of things she hadn't seen yet.

[Thalas] -- Where to now? (Holds Maya's hand)

[Maya] -- (Holds Thalas' hand) My guess would be Apaneca*, but... (shrugs) It's getting late and we have classes soon, so... (Sighs)

[Kaiser] -- Not a big deal! (Smiles) See... I have a better idea: I`ll conjure us there! It was nice driving and all, but... Vortexes are infinite times superior. So... Where to?

[Maya] -- (Smiles) Laguna de Las Ninfas**. There`s a reason why, I can assure all of you...

[Melchior] -- (Mischievous, puts a hand on one of Maya`s shoulders) No need to assure us of anything, Mayacita. It`s your day! (Smiles)

[Maya] -- If you say so... (Smiles) Please, Kaiser... Open the vortex!

[Kaiser] -- (Smiles) Your wish is my command! (Reverence to Maya, creates a vortex in front of him) All aboard!

All seven Blue Moon Knights entered on the vortex; Maya went on first and found herself in a large glade which protected an enormous, round lagoon. The moon was already shining on a open, cloudless night sky. She came close to the waters and saw the nymph-like flowers floating in it.

She snapped her fingers and changed into her bathsuit -- a dark beige swimsuit with baby yellow flower pattern -- and entered on the cold, still waters.

[Maya] -- Look at this! (Amazed) Don't know if we should enter, but... It is so beautiful!

As Black Witch made her seventh step on the lagoon, it started to shine brightly, as if it was under some kind of spell; the others started looking at the waters with a hint of concern. As Anael was preparing himself to use the powers of Corazón de Guatemala, the water's surface began to twist and levitate. Then, it took the shape of a female. The waters came down once more, and it revealed to be a female spirit.

She was medium-heighted, slightly chubby, white-skinned with straight, short, dark-brown hair with an edgy bang which covered her left eye. The exposed eye showed to be dark-brown with wide eyelashes. Maya muffled a scream as tears appeared on her eyes.

[Maya] -- (Shocked, at the verge of crying) Dios mio! Iracema!? How...?!


To Be Continued...

-----

Glossary:

(*): One of the towns featured in Ruta de Las Flores; it is one of the smallest and features two large lagoons near it: Laguna Verde and Laguna de Las Ninfas.

(**): One of the most beautiful lagoons of El Salvador, is a large water mass 1.5 miles away from Apaneca/ it receives its name due to the amount of aquatic flowers in it.



- A City for Artists, Coffee and Flowers -


Ruta de Las Flores, El Salvador -- 3:15 p.m.

The Knights rode away in the amidst of the most beautiful flowers ever seen. Maya and Altagracia grabbed their cameras and starting taking pictures of everything, from landscape to road signs and even mischievous plays and interactions within the van.

It took them a few hours by car to reach the first destination of the route: the small city of Juayua, the village known for its coffee, exquisite food and flower-themed signs and frameworks.As soon as they passed through the humble entrance of the small town, the car was filled with the most pleasant smell of fresh tamales* filled with black beans, scrambled eggs and roasted vegetables with a hint of Izote** flower, giving the Knights the most intriguing experience.

[Melchior] -- Hmmm... (Licks lips) I missed the food around here!

[Maya] -- Let's stop! I want to take some pictures and get some of the food for the rest of the journey! (Smiling)

[Kaiser] -- Alright then, folks! (Stops the van. Turns the engine of and pulls the hand brake) Let's get some thing to go... The city looks great for a small village.

[Kimi] -- Indeed! (Gets off the van) I'll check the landscape out.

[Anael] -- Let's go, Gracia. I'll help you out. (Smiles)

[Altagracia] -- No need to! (chuckles) I'm a big lady already!

The seven heroes got out of the van and decided to check the city out. The small, humble and historic houses were all ornamented with flowers and all things talking about spring. They started visiting all shacks and shops, looking for anything interesting to eat and get as souvenir; each one of them chose their set of food: pupusas*** of various flavors, tomato sauces and sour creams to join them, tortas de yema**** with coconut shavings, cinnamon and ice cream .

They sat at a round wooden table in the largest avenue of the city, shielded by a large sun umbrella. They talked, laughed and ate as they watched the crowd moving from one site with the other.

[Maya] -- (Excited) Hey, guys! Look over there! (Points to her front) It seems there'll be a live performance there.

[Anael] -- Oh! A marimba group! This is going to be good!

The group composed of ten musicians climbed on top of a wooden stage; three large marimbas were brought into it and the performers started playing their songs. The heroes looked at the scene and listened very carefully to the music that was being played, which seemed more than perfect for such sunny, bright day of July.


To be Continued...

-----

Glossary:

(*): Fresh Mesoamerican corncakes, usually filled with black beans, tomatoes, chicken, potatoes or even other exquisite fillings.

(**): Common type of flower largely used in Salvadoran cuisine. It grows all over Central America, and its roots (Yuca) are also up for consume. The flowers have a bitter, yet pleasing taste which makes them highly sought for culinary purposes. Izote is also cultivated alongside coffee plantations to avoid soil erosion on steep slopes.

(***): Traditional dish of Mayan origin, they consist on large, thick tortillas made out of corn or rice flour, stuffed with cheese, chicharrón, refried beans or loroco.

(****): Yolk-made Salvadoran pies.



- Where the Flowers Shine Brighter - 


[Maya] - The first place I want to visit is in Melchior's former land! La Ruta de las Flores*!

[Melchior] - That place? (Mischievous) Well, that doesn't surprise me, considering your likes and dislikes...

[Maya] - I always wanted to know more about the wilderness of El Salvador. So, you guys care to join me?

[Thalas] - Of course! Kaiser, can you give us the fastest way of reaching the place?

[Kaiser] - (Smiling) Sure thing! Let's just move somewhere more discrete and we'll be good to go.


That said, the Knights moved elsewhere; they found an empty back alley a few blocks away from Maya's and got inside as the shadows guaranteed they'd be covered. Then, Kaiser focused on the wall near him and the shadows responded swirling near his hand and opening a purple-glowing vortex.


[Kaiser] - The door is open, guys. (Shows the vortex) Before we go, I need you, Maya, to guide us; is that okay?

[Maya] - Of course! (Steps near the vortex) Follow me, folks!


The Honduran magician stepped into the glowing vortex followed by the rest of the Blue Moon Knights. In a matter of seconds, they left Guatemala City and ended up in the western part of El Salvador only a few kilometers away from Guatemala in a town called Ahuachapán**.

That town was bustling with colors, sounds and voices coming from all directions; the shops and smaller, antique buildings featured beautiful, dazzling handmade fabric patterns inspired on the flowers found in the region.


[Maya] - (Stunned) Wow...Looks so much better than I thought I'd be!

[Melchior] - (Mischievous) Well, it is much better... Seems that people took an effort to rebuild some of the historical things here...And it still smells like coffee!

[Anael] - (Smiling, looking around) Well... Where to, Maya?

[Maya] - Let's see... (Gets a map from backpack and opens it) The first city of the route is Juayua, a small town following the road ahead.

[Melchior] - We still got time and... (Looks around) None seems to be staring at us.

[Thalas] - Melchior... What are you up to?

[Melchior] - A bit of magic! (Conjures up a Kombi)

[Kimi] - (Startled) What the hell?!

[Melchior] - He, he, he...

[Kaiser] - (Sighs) Alright, we better hop in... Kimi and I are the eldest, so... We'll drive.

[Thalas] - (Facepalm) Oh god... Here we go.

[Maya] - (Excited) This keeps getting better and better!

The Knights entered in the brand new Kombi; Kaiser and Kimi went on front, and the rest stayed on the passenger's area. Then, Kaiser turned the vehicle on, hit the gas and followed the spring road into the following town, leaving the smell of coffee behind...


To Be Continued...

-----

Glossary:

(*): La Ruta de las Flores (Flower Route) is a touristical destination in El Salvador; a road surrounded by tropical flowers, which extend to twenty miles and features five small towns of El Salvador, each of them unique in their way.

(**): Ahuachapán is a city and municipality and the capital of the Ahuachapán Department in western El Salvador. The municipality including the city covers an area of 244.84 km² and as of 2007 has a population of 110,511 people. Situated near the Guatemalan border, it is the westernmost city in the country and is the center of an agricultural region producing primarily coffee.

Ahuachapán is the site of a geothermal power plant and a hydroelectric station. The local geothermal activity produces many steam vents, visible throughout the surrounding mountains.

Among other things, Ahuachapan is also the birthplace of notable Salvadoran poet Alfredo Espino and is about an hour's drive from the national wildlife park El Imposible.




- Natural Born Magician -



Guatemala City, Guatemala — 11:15 a. m.


It was a bright 4th July in the capital of the Eternal Spring country, where our well-known heroes dwelled. Finally, their vacation time had come and they would be able to rest as much as they always wanted and so desperately needed. This time, however, they had different plans in mind.

The boys, and the boys only, arranged to meet at Anael’s house — they all had special plans in mind for the recess, and that plan involved someone else. Specifically, another magician which was already part of the group. The group sat on the available space on Anael’s room, assuring to close the door and let nobody else inside.


[Anael] — So, does ever agree we should do it?

[Kaiser] — (Excited) Of course! I think it is going to be more than awesome!

[Kimi] — Hate to sound pessimist, but isn’t there a possibility that we may upset her?

[Melchior](Mischievous) You don’t hate sounding pessimist, Kimi. You are pessimist! (Laughs) Seriously now, I don’t think she’ll hate it. Considering the person who helped us in the first place, I think it is very likely that we hit perfect score on this.

[Kimi] (Ironic laughter) Funny you, Melchior! (Gives him a joking slap on his head)

[Anael] (Serious) Thalas, what do you think? Is she going to like it?

[Thalas] (Thinks for a moment in silence)

[Melchior] (Impatient) Come on, spit it out, man! Will we have all this trouble just for her to be sad and rampage on us again?

[Thalas](Confident, smiling) Of course not! This is going to be flawless. She will love that! Trust me; it is going to be perfect!

[Kimi] (Sighs, smiles) I hope so… We kind of worked hard on this…


On the meantime, someone else was hearing the conversation through the closed door; someone short, copper-skinned and dark brown-haired. She rapidly ran into her room and snapped her fingers, conjuring a pink sort of Communicator. Then, she pressed the only button attached to it and began speaking.


[Altagracia] — Hey there, how you doing? Listen, I think the boys are up to something and you should come here and check things– 


Suddenly, she heard some knocks on her door.


[Anael] (Baffled voice) Rayo de Sol, we are heading over Maya’s now. Want to join us?

[Altagracia](Faking annoyance) No! You guys are hiding something and I am not going unless you tell me, hermano mayor! (Hangs Communicator off)

[Anael](Chuckles) Fine… Listen, I’ll tell you on the way but you have to promise not to tell anyone, okay?

[Altagracia](Thinks for a moment)(Excited and childish) Fine! I am coming! (Jumps off bed and races to the door, opening it)


The little Blue Moon Knight joined the rest of the party in their sort of quest, getting out of Anael's place and heading to their target's home, which was on the other side of the town. On the meantime, they began to explain to Altagracia what they were up to and how important it was for them for her to be part of it. As they enlightened her, Altagracia got more and more interested in the boy's plot.

After some minutes of walking and talking, they arrived at their target's home. Thalas knocked on the door and all of them waited; a few minutes later, the last Blue Moon Knight appeared in front of them; the Honduran which all of them liked.

[Everyone] — (Shout, excited) ¡Cumpleaños feliz, Maya!

[Maya](Surprised, thrilled) Oh my god! You guys remembered!¡Muchas gracias! (Hugs all of them, starting with Anael, then Melchior, Kimi, Kaiser, Altagracia and Thalas)

[Anael] — You're welcome, sis! (Mischievous smile) Any plans for your day?

[Maya] — Not really... (Sighs) I don't usually celebrate my birthdays...

[Melchior] — Very well! (Mischievous) Let us celebrate with you then!

[Thalas](Shy) I've talked to the guys and... We were thinking on getting you an entire week of celebrations! It's your birthday, and we want to celebrate with you!

[Maya](Surprised) Guys... (Watery eyes) That's the most awesome thing anyone has ever done for me!

[Thalas] — (Thrilled) So, what will it be? Where are we headed first?

[Maya] — (Thoughtfull, mischievous) Well, let's see...


Maya took her time to think about it; there were so many great locations not only in Guatemala but in Central America as a whole that she wanted to pay a visit. Minutes after Thalas' question, she came up with the perfect place to start her birthday week...


To Be Continued...

Hello Everyone!

Well, the Blog has been revived and the month of Jun had been finished properly with the Knights' last Season of adventures. Now, for the upcoming month, here we have a new to-do list:

1. The Summer Summit of 2015 happens this Month! - Considering that this Blog wasn't' so alive in January, 2015's Summer Summit has been postponed for this Month and will begin on the first week of this month, with a new topic this year.

2. The Previous Summer Summits Will Get Covers! - Alas, it is a collection of short stories and they deserve their own Covers. Starting this Month, I'll begin preparing some special covers for the Summits.

3. The Missing Covers from Seasons 6th and 7th will Be On! - It's been more than a year since these Chapters debuted in this Blog. Therefore, they deserve Covers on their on. I'll be working on them as soon as possible.

4. HD Covers for the First Seasons - Those will be available soon for downloadable version only along with other special illustrations made by me.

5. The Journals Will be Back Soon! - Though they'll be posted nearly in the end of this month or in August, I'll still notify their comeback here. Also a collection of short stories which might get their own set of illustrations as well

So far, these are the main topics to be explored by me in this vacation time. I hope I can deliver as much as I can. Wish me luck and stay tuned for more!

Sincerely,
Iridium Blade

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