Chapter 1

Of all the challenges I had faced in my life, taking over the Dominion had to be the biggest one.  I had grown in the Empire, I had been raised as a warrior of the Imperial Clan and my world had consisted first of a cavern and then the Palace and surrounding grounds.  When I grew up, I had expanded my world to the Rebel Clan’s territories and then the Shadow Kingdom, and even if I had never been there, I knew that the Light Kingdom existed.  But nothing compared to knowing about the Dominion and being there, the size of it was beyond what I could imagine and the territories that formed it were bigger than everything I already know.  Taking control of such a big place had been an incredible challenge, and even if I had managed to do it without much complications, after years of planning, I was still waiting for the other shoe to fall.

Everything had been fine so far, but it was mostly because most people were still afraid after I had taken over, and I was in contact and had agreements with most of the rebel groups.  I knew that I had to act and start to make changes if I wanted to keep my advantages and to keep my allies loyal to me, and I needed to be very careful.  I knew that there were many people interested in retaining their power no matter what, and some people that even wanted to increase the power they already had.  I had already had to stop some attacks that I had been able to stop thanks in part to my visions that were slowly returning, but I still needed to be careful and keep watch so I could be prepared in case someone else tried to attack.

I was in my office, going over reports and making plans for my day, when I was interrupted by the Representative Jeong, that had entered my offices without announcing his presence first.

“I’m sorry,” my receptionists said from the door, “I couldn’t stop him.”

“Don’t worry, it’s ok,” I told her, trying to assure her everything was fine, as I turned my attention to the Representative.  “To what do I owe this visit?”  I wasn’t worried about him arriving like that, I was more than capable of taking care of him, that was without taking into account the two bodyguards standing inside the room, one that was practically invisible, thanks to his power, and another capable of disabling any opponent without trouble.

“I received an invitation for a reunion for the Committee, and I wanted to ask you what did you need from us, just so we could be prepared.  I don’t think it would be in the Dominion’s best interest to keep hiding and controlling all the technology that we have developed, it’s time to set it free and go to the next step.”

“That’s something to discuss during he reunion, now it’s not the time.” I said.

“If you want everything to go smoothly, then you should follow my advice,” Jeong warned.

“I don’t think you are in a position to tell me what to do, remember your place.  Have you already forgotten what I’m capable of?”

“How could I forget how you murdered my son in cold blood?  It’s only that things won’t go well if we keep stopping progress, it would be better to allow people to move forward and do what’s best for the Dominio.  It would be in everyone’s best interest.”  I agreed with him, and I knew he was speaking the truth, but I had a role to play and an image to maintain, at least for a little bit longer.

“The reunion will stay as planned, and I expect you and the other Representatives to be ready to hear me out and follow my wishes, or you will be in trouble.”

I was still talking to Jeong when I was hit by the vision, it was a weird one, it came to me with a weird clarity, and that was even more odd after weeks of hard to understand visions, and confusing images.

I knew exactly what was about to happen and who it would affect, for what I could see in my vision, it was something that was going to happen soon, because the clothes I could see Ethan wearing were the same ones he had been wearing that same morning.  I knew that I had time, but I wasn’t sure how much, I needed to move, fast, because there was no way I could let my vision come true.  I knew that I would be haunted by the sight of Ethan in a pool of his own blood for days, but that wasn’t something for me to worry about at the time, what I needed to do was to move fast, so I could keep the vision from becoming reality.  I needed to act.

When the vision ended, the Representative was staring at me, I was sure he knew what had happened to me.  I used my powers to call my guards and get them moving, I had to act fast, there was no time to waste.

“I’m sorry, Representative, but this meeting is over, anything else you need will have to be discussed during out reunion.”

“What’s going on?  Was that a vision?”  I couldn’t stop and answer him, so I signaled one of my guards to take him out of the room.  I knew he didn’t want to leave, he still had questions and things to discuss, but I had work to do and people to save and couldn’t deal with him.

I tried to contact Kimball using my mind, but that was a difficult task, his mind was naturally armored against mental intrusions.  I tried his technology next, but he didn’t answer my call, and I had to send him a text message, with just a few key words to tell him something was going on at Ethan’s school, I would have one of my people go to him and fill the rest.

“What’s going on?” Ivan asked, appearing in the middle of the room, answering my call.

“Ethan is in danger, there is going to be an attack at his school and I think he will be harmed, he could even…”  I couldn’t even finish the thought, that would make it real and the idea of losing my son was too much for me.

“What do you need?”  Ivan asked.  I knew I could trust in him, he was one of my oldest allies in the Dominion and someone I could trust.

“A small group of warriors, prepared to face anything, the group we will face won’t be easy to subdue, not if they were able to take care of the guards posted at the school.”

“Your best men?  I will be there guiding them, I won’t let anything happen to Ethan.

“I will go with you.  I won’t stay here while my son is in danger.”

“I thought your plan was to act as if you didn’t care about him.”

“And that is still the plan, but there are different ways of handling the situation and still accomplishing my goals.  I can’t allow Ethan become a target for my enemies, but I can’t allow him to be harmed either.”  I still remembered my first encounter with Faakhir and how I had been forced to harm Ethan in order to protect him.  I was afraid I was going to face a similar situation, but I had to believe everything was going to work out, I couldn’t let my fears to cloud my mind or affect my decisions.  “I trust you to find the right people for this, five guards is all we need for now, a bigger group will follow us and take care of the enemy while we distract them.”

“With all due respect, I think I should be part of your group,” Yoweri said, speaking for the first time, and I could see that Ivan agreed that he would be an asset to us.

“I agree, and I think I have the right people to fill the other spots for this mission,” Ivan said before vanishing from the room, just as Thalia was walking in.

“Did you call?” She asked.

“I need your help,” with Thalia I didn’t even need to talk, I just opened my mind and let her take a look at my vision and allowed her to see my plans, trusting that she would do whatever necessary to help me with them.

Trusting Thalia to do what she needed, and to find Kimball and fill him in on what was happening, I left the room, with Yoweri and Zhou following me without a sound, ready to face any danger.  I went straight to my room, the ones that I had taken after killing the former King and Queen of the Dominion, and started selecting the weapons I would need.  I was used to wearing the cape Kimball had made for me every day, but there were other weapons he had given me that I would need and that I usually left in the room, so I went there to retrieve them, there were a lot to choose from, and I found exactly what I needed in no time.

In less than an hour everything was ready, and I followed Ivan to a limousine that he had prepared for us, to take us to our destination.  Faakhir had built the school close to the building that had the Palace and the government offices, and near the Towers where the Representatives and Embassadors from the different corners of the Dominion lived.  It was all part of his need for control, the school was mandatory for the children of the people living in the Towers, it was a place where they could be controlled and watched.  The trip was a short one, and as soon as we arrived, we could see something was going on, there were more soldiers than usual, and the uniforms they were using were different from the uniforms of my army.  As soon as we stopped at the gate, a small group of soldiers surrounded us and started yelling for us to get out of the vehicle.  Ivan complied, teleporting outside and demanding to talk to the person in charge, while my other four guards waited for my orders.

I got out of the vehicle and started moving towards the school without a word, the soldiers around us lifted their weapons and pointed them at me, one of them made the mistake of pointing his gun at my face.  I was able to confirm that I was familiar with his weapon, and I expanded my senses, with a thought I connected to their weapons and disabled them.  At the same time I pushed the soldier out of my way and resumed my walk.  I kept moving, confident in my guards’ ability to protect me.  I heard yelling and threats around us, but I ignored them as I crossed the gardens and the parking lot and headed for the main administrative building.  Before reaching it the doors opened and a woman that looked familiar got out, followed by another group of soldiers.

“Greeting Kaiserin,” the woman said, “it’s so kind of you to come visit us.  Before you try anything else, let me tell you that we have taken the students hostage and we have them in two different locations inside, if you try anything against us, we will start killing them, starting with your son.”

I looked over my shoulder and saw my guards approaching me, and I knew that at least Ivan had heard the threat.

“What do you pretend with this?”  I asked, waving my hand around, “What’s your plan?”

“It’s not me who you need to talk to, I will take you to my boss, and your son, he will explain to you how things are going to be, but your guards have to stay here, we need to make sure neither one of you will cause trouble for us.”

I watched as she retrieved a powers suppressor and I tried to convince myself that everything was going to be ok, I had the necklace that Kimball had given me, and I was sure it would disable the suppressor and I would be free in just a few minutes.

“Do you want me to wear that?”  I said, trying to keep my tone neutral, I could feel that my lack of reaction was making her unease.

“You will, unless you want us to kill your son,” the image of Ethan in a pool of his own blood came to me, but I did my best to keep my fears from showing on my face.

“I think you are over estimating my love for my son, but I’m willing to play your game, for now.  Don’t do anything that could put the students at risk,” I ordered my men out loud, but I gave Ivan some further instructions directly to his mind.  ‘Wait for us to be gone, and out of sight and fight back, neutralize as many soldiers as you can, as long as you don’t put yourself or the students at risk.  Kimball is on his way with reinforcements, if you need to wait for them, that’s ok, if not, start working on securing the place.’

Are you going to be ok?‘  I could see the question on his mind before I broke the connection.

Don’t worry about me, worry about them if they dared to hurt my son.‘  I left Ivan’s mind and moved closer to the woman, she was happy, thinking that I was at her mercy and that once I had the suppressor on me they would be safe.

As soon as the suppressor was activated I felt the void inside me that indicated my powers were no longer working.  I tried to act normal as I touched the suppressor and then moved my hand to my necklace and discretely activated it.  I knew that it was programmed to look for any signal of suppression every few minutes, but by activating it, I was buying myself some time, and I knew by experience that in some situations every second counted.

“Satisfied?” I asked the woman.

“Very, what does it feel to be powerless?  How does it feel to know you are at your enemies’ mercy?”

“I think you are seriously underestimating me if you think something like this troubles me.  Now, take me to your boss, I don’t want to waste my time with you, I need to talk to the person in charge,” I was actually feeling rather vulnerable and a little afraid, but I had to be confident that everything would be fine.

I could see that the woman wanted to do something, but neither she, nor her soldiers dared to get near me, they were keeping their distance make sure I would be able to hurt them.  I was glad to see that they were still afraid of me, even when they thought they had me in their hands.

I had been to Ethan’s school a couple of times, and I had a vague idea of how it was laid out.  The school was actually a campus that included a few buildings and other installations.  It had an elementary, middle and high school.  Ethan was still in elementary school, but we weren’t moving in that direction, it was obvious they had the kids in another place.  It didn’t take me long to guess we were heading towards the auditorium, which made sense, it was a place big enough to house most students, but not all.  The woman had already told me that they had the kids in two different locations, and I knew that the other two likely spots were the cafeteria or the stadium.

It had been barely five minutes when I felt the rush of my powers coming back at me, and it had been just in time, as we were already reaching the auditorium.  The woman and the soldiers guided me through a side door and we walked through a series of back hallways.  When we finally reached our destination, I realized we were at the stage, we were behind thick curtains, and I knew that Ethan and the others had to be on the other side.  Trying to act natural, I put my hand on the curtains, connecting with them, keeping the sensation of the fabric locked so I could recall it later if I needed it.

The woman guided me to the center of the stage and only then the curtains started moving, opening.  Strong lights were turned on, all of them focused on me, blinding me momentarily and keeping the scene on the other side from me.  I wanted to break the lights or at least turn them away, but I couldn’t, that would have let them know that I had my powers back.  Eventually the lights moved, allowing me to see the other side.

In the area in front of me, between the stage and the first line of seats, where a group of guards, tied up and gagged, and I guessed they were part of the school’s guard.  In front of them, resting against the stage’s base, was a machine that I recognized as an area suppressor, the kind that they used on sport events to keep the viewers from affecting the results of the game.  I tried to push my powers beyond the stage and I realized that I couldn’t, the invisible wall at the edge of the stage was keeping me from using my powers, which made things more difficult for me.  Behind the guards, on the first few rows of seats were some older people that could only be teachers, there were not all the teachers, and I could only guess they were important, since they were with that particular group of hostages. At the back, in the other section of seats were some students, from different age groups, and whom I could identify as the children of the most influential persons on the Dominion.  In the access hallway, between the two seating areas, just in the middle, directly in front of me, was a man that I recognized as Draco, one of Faakhir’s followers, one that had fallen from grace a couple of years before, because he was too greedy for Faakhir’s tastes.  He had a gun in one of his hands, and the other hand was resting on Ethan’s shoulder.

“Welcome Kaiserin, you saved me a lot of trouble by coming here, it would be easier to talk in person,” he greeted me.

“What do you want?” I asked.

“I want you to give me the control of the Dominion, or I will kill your son,” he threatened me, moving the gun until the gun’s barrel was resting on Ethan’s temple.

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Hello

I know I haven’t posted in a while, and I’m sorry for that, I promise I will finish Kaiserin’s story, it’s just that a lot is going on right now.  In about a month I will be publishing Kaiserin’s first book, the Spanish version.  I’m working on the English version as well, but it will probably take longer, I hope I will have it ready before the end of the year.

Right now the idea is having it on Kindle, I’m not sure if I’m going to have a paperback version.  If you would be interested in buying a paperback tell me and I will try to make it possible.

About Book 4, the idea is restarting the weekly posts in September, most likely mid-September, but I will let you know.

Thanks to all of you for reading Kaiserin

Bonus 6

News about Faakhir’s death and the public execution of Emily traveled across the Dominion in a short time.  A few of those knew about Kaiserin’s plans, but even among those who had alliances with her, her true goals and long term plans weren’t known.

For most of the people in the Dominion, that first night was one of fear and trepidation.  Most people went to bed not knowing what they would find the next day.  The majority of the citizens of the Dominion were afraid things would only get worse under the control of Mzansi’s Demoness, the woman responsible for countless of death in all parts of the Dominion.  While most were afraid, a few ended the day resigned, and thinking that, since they had nothing more to lose, it didn’t really matter what happened next.

Things were different in the fringes of Capital City, a few hours after news of the deaths of their rulers, trucks loaded with warriors arrived, and started to gather the people and take them out of their homes.  Most thought their time had finally come, and that they were being led to their execution.  Most of them were too weak to fight back, hungry and hopeless, they resigned to their fate and moved to what they thought were their deaths, thinking that death was a better choice to the lives they had been living, but they were pleasantly surprised to find not a firing squad, but a feast waiting for them.

Once they made sure the food was for them, and that they could eat as much as they wanted, they were informed that they were participating in the celebrations for their new Queen.  Most of them didn’t trust the gift, and weren’t sure about the circumstances, but their empty stomachs did the thinking for them, and they decided to eat and drink as much as they could.  They didn’t care if it was a trap or a bribe, all they could think of at the moment was that they were hungry and there was food, they didn’t know when they would get their hands on food again, and they had to make the best of the situation.

While the people on the fringes of Capital City enjoyed their first true meal in months, the people from the Towers were oblivious to the act.  They were worried about their future and the decisions they had to make, they were thinking the pros and cons of recognizing the new government, and accepting a woman like Kaiserin as their new Queen.  Most of them quickly understood that they really had no choice, if they wanted to survive, they needed to accept their new tyrant.  They thought they were jumping from the frying pan into the fire, and wanted a way out, but they all arrived at the same conclusions, if they wanted to stay alive, they needed to accept Kaiserin and just do whatever she wanted, at least for the moment.

Bonus 5

Ethan knew something bad had happened from the moment the soldiers started to arrive to school and they were called for a student assembly.  It was normal for students to stay late for extracurricular activities, but as the day progressed and they weren’t allowed to get out, most people started to get worried.  He wasn’t worried like the others, he could recognize that some of the soldiers were loyal to his mother, and that made him feel safe, unlike his friends or the rest of the students.

The announcement that they would have to stay there the night was received with surprise, but mostly with fear, so much that Ethan had to block his empathy because he was starting to feel sick by all that fear.  It only got worse when the rumor that both Faakhir and Emily were dead and that his mother was to blame for that.  Like it usually happened, most people started to get mad at him, blaming him for his mother’s actions.  Luckily for him, his friends stayed with him, acting as human shields against the rest of the school.

“What’s going to happen now?” Oliver asked.  “What do you think your mother is going to do?”

“Probably take over, which I guess she is already doing, after that, I’m really not sure,” Ethan said.  He wanted to say more, to explain that they were going to be safe, but he couldn’t do that and betray his mother’s secrets.  “I wouldn’t worry so much, I’m sure things are going to be better with her in charge, she is not a fan of killing indiscriminately like Emily, she is tough, but just.  Most of the horrible things she did, were because she was following orders, not because she enjoyed doing them.”

“I don’t think she will change that much now that she is in charge, I think she will get even worse now that there is no one to control her,” Dymtro said.

“Don’t be so pessimists, you may be surprised by her, besides, my father will be there to keep her in line,” Ethan said, thinking that a reminder of his father would help ease their minds, after all, they all liked and respected him after he had rescued them.

“Do you really think your father will be able to help?  He doesn’t seem to be able to control her that much,” Hye Ki said.

“I get why you would think that, but believe me, everything is going to be ok now that my mother is in charge.”

Bonus 4

“Sensei, we have received a call, Faakhir is dead and Kaiserin’s people are requesting our support to keep the people in our country calm after this notice.”

Since Kaiserin had defeated their father, Katsuo and Kazue had taken over his work as protectors of their people, and had worked hard to keep the rebellion alive.  They had a network that covered the whole country, and they even had contact with the people who was hidding their Emperor, protecting him from Emily’s wrath.  It was important for them to keep him alive long enough for him to reclaim his throne and help rebuild their country, and that day was getting closer and closer.

“We will keep a low profile for now, I trust Kimball to call and explain the situation better, after that we will determine the next steps to take.  Until we are able to talk to our father, we need to be cautious and follow Kaiserin’s orders,” Katsuo said to his people.

“Still, we need to be prepared and be sure that our people is ready to act, just in case something happens,” Kazue added.

“They also told me that they are opening communication to Aquarium and that you will be able to talk to Sensei Ueshiba directly,” the soldier said.

“Those are excellent news,” Kazue said.  In the years since her father had gone away, she had learned to accept Kaiserin, but she didn’t trust her, not completely, but her father was someone in whom she trusted blindly, and being able to talk to him and get his advice was truly important to her.

“The moment we have been waiting for is about to arrive.  Our people is tired of being abused by the Dominion, they want freedom and the chance to rebuild their lives.  Right now I don’t care how, all I care is that we get our freedom back.”

Bonus 3

“It’s finally happening,” Pierre told his wife.  Madeleine didn’t look like she used to look.  When she had been kidnapped by Faakhir, when he tried to make her one of his lovers, Pierre had thought he would never be able to see her again.  For a long time he mourned her death, he had been depressed for a time, and then he had gotten together with some people that loved her almost as much as he did, and worked towards making her killers pay.  It had been a miracle that she had returned to him.  She wasn’t the same physically, now she looked like a mzansier warrior, with beautiful dark skin and dark hair.  Most people thought she was a killer sent to punish him for trying to get Kaiserin killed, but that she had fallen in love with him and decided to stay by his side and protect him from the evil Kaiserin.

“We knew this time was coming,” Madeleine said, “but I thought they would let us know about it before i happened.”  Madeleine had been one of Aquarium refugees for a time, but then she realized her brother and husband were trying to kill Kaiserin and she had asked her to let her go back, she needed to make them understand that she was ok, because if she didn’t, she was afraid they would either succeed in their efforts to kill her savior, or Kaiserin would get tired and kill them.  It was a good thing that she could change her image and look completely different, that allowed her to hide in plain sight.  Many resented her husband for taking another woman, and especially a mzansier, but they didn’t care.  Just a few people knew the truth, but all of them were working with the resistance, and knew who Kaiserin really was, and what she was trying to do.  They were loyal both to Kaiserin and the cause, and they were committed to their people freedom.

“I’ll talk to your brother,” Pierre said, “I’m sure he will be able to convince the people in our government to support Kaiserin’s claim to the throne.  No matter what happens, the change is already starting, and it would be better if we can be part of it.  This will be our first step to take back our lives.”

“Things are definitely changing, and I’m sure it would be for the better.  The people in Aquarium love Kaiserin, they are few and live secluded, but they have everything they need and they are happy.  If Kaiserin can make the same happen in the Dominion,  it would be wonderful.”

“Things are already better now that Faakhir is dead.”

Bonus 2

“Can you believe it?  That woman is about to become the new Queen and head of the Dominion,” Representative Jeong said, incredulity and anger lacing his words.

“We should have seen it coming,” Representative Burgos said, “we should have expected her to want even more power.  I don’t know what it took her so long to kill them, but even they should have known that someone like her wouldn’t be second to anyone for long.”

“The problem is that there is nothing we can do against her now,” Representative Kozak said.  “She has control of the army, and she is extremely powerful on her own, not to mention the fact that she is a Seer and have other like her under her command.  Our best chance is to accept her and recognize her as our new leader.  We should also talk to our governments and push them to do the same.  She already did a lot of damage as Faakhir’s right hand and personal assassin, just imagine what she will be able to do now if we try to oppose her.”

“I know exactly what she is capable of, I still remember the day she killer my kid in cold blood, he just let him fall to his dead, didn’t even blink, we were never able to even recover his body.  She is a monster, and she should pay for her crimes, but not now, we have to wait for the right moment.  For the moment, we need to do what she says, and buy more time, we will have our justice, just now right now.”

“So, are we all in agreement?  Is this Commitee going to recognize Kaiserin as new Queen?”  Kozak asked.

“We will,” they all agreed.

They all agreed that they needed to follow her lead in order to survive, they would have to obey Kaiserin and hide their true feelings and intentions from her.  To go against her would be suicide, and they all had experimented her power in one way or another, they knew not to antagonize her.  Some of them have even tried to have her killed, but that had failed as well.  They haven’t been able to touch her while she was Faakhir’s protege, and now that she was the one in control it would be even more difficult to make her pay for her crimes, but they were willing to try.  None of them was willing to let her crimes go unpunished, they all knew it would be difficult, but they were willing to work harder in order to get rid of her.  It didn’t matter how long it took them, sooner or later Kaiserin would pay for killing their loved ones.