~~Aniraina​~~ A long time ago, there was peace in a land of castles, and animals. This magical land was everything you could ever dream of! There was no bad heart in the kingdom and everyone was very nice to one another. This place was called Aniraina​! ~~Present Day 2016​~~ In a Starbucks coffee shop in New York City, there was a girl named Jackie. She had been working there for a few months because she wanted to get some extra cash. It was almost time to go home and she had to lock up for the day. At that moment a person wearing a long cloak covering the face came into the shop. “Hello, welcome to Starbucks. We are closing up now but we open tomorrow at 6 AM.” Jackie was shocked to see a weird person in a cloak. The person smiled and said “I have something that you might be interested in.” Jackie was terrified! The man laughed, “Don’t be frightened child, I’m only here as a messenger. What I have here is a special card that you will enjoy.” The man in black handed over a card that had Jackie’s name on it. He said “Go to the place listed above and there you will find your answers.” Jackie took the card and looked at it. It had animals on it and had an address that was near her home. Jackie was confused, as it was in an abandoned building. Jackie was scared that this was a trick, but before she could say anything, the man was gone. She looked around the building and found nothing. So she locked up for the night and headed for home. ~~The next day​~~ Jackie woke up feeling really strange. She remembered that a man in a long black cloak came and gave her a card with an address on it. She was curious as to why she was given the card. So as she was getting ready for her day (as she was not working today) her cell phone notified her that she received an unknown text message. The text said “Come to the abandoned building at 10 am. I will tell you everything when you come.” Jackie was really curious and scared now. Should she risk her life and go to the building or should she call the police and report him? Well, she was curious to see what the man in black wanted to talk about even though he was a creeper. So she decided to go to the building. She brought along some pepper spray just in case. She walked to the building and stared at it. She nervously twisted her short brown hair. The building was old and falling apart at the seams. Jackie went inside to find the man from the night before waiting there for her. The room was big and had broken stuff everywhere. Jackie went to the man and asked the question that had plagued her dreams all night. “Who are you?” The man, who was facing the wall, turned around and saw Jackie looking scared and curious at the same time. He smiled and said in a calming voice, “Ahh you made it. Good. Now to answer your question…” He dropped the cloak he was wearing and stepped into the light. Jackie was stunned! There was an animal standing there! Jackie blinked and blinked her bright blue eyes again. She could not believe what she was seeing and took off her glasses to clean them. There, standing in front of her was an animal with human-like features. The animal that was standing on two legs was a lion!! Jackie felt her legs buckle and she fell to her knees. She looked up at the lion and fainted, but before she hit the ground, the lion caught her and picked her up. The lion then took Jackie into his arms and disappeared from the building. ~~Aniraina​~~ The lion and Jackie appeared in front of a huge castle! The lion gently placed Jackie on the ground and walked to the nearby river to fill a cup of water. He then walked back to her and saw that Jackie had woken up and was looking around. Jackie heard footsteps and looked towards the sound, and saw the lion holding a glass of water for her. Jackie took the offered cup and drank it, feeling the cool water go down her throat. She put the cup down and while she looked around asked, “Where are we? Weren’t we in the abandoned warehouse just a few seconds ago?” The lion helped Jackie up and said “Welcome Jackie to Aniraina​!” As the lion said this Jackie was speechless. Somehow she was in a entirely different world! Jackie knew she wasn’t in New York anymore. Jackie was scared! She thought that this must be a dream or that she might have bumped her head too hard when she fainted. The lion then told Jackie to follow him. Jackie had a lot of questions that needed to be answered. As they were walking to the castle, Jackie asked the first question that came to her mind. “Um, not to be rude or anything but who are you and what are we doing here?” The lion chuckled and said “My name is Shiku Corryn but you can call me Shiki.” Jackie laughed and said, “Shiku means lion’s roar right?” Shiki laughed and said, “That’s right my friend.” As they were talking, they ended up in a large castle. The castle gave a sense of warm welcoming as they entered the building. Shiki showed Jackie to a large table where the other animals were waiting for them. The animals stood up as they came closer to the table. The fox, who looked like the leader, came over to where Shiki and Jackie were, bowed and said in a sweet voice like honey, “Welcome to Aniraina. My name is Nixeum but you may call me Nix for short. It’s a pleasure to make your acquaintance.” Nix took Jackie’s hand and kissed it before letting go. Next the wolf came and introduced himself in a calm manner. “Hello I’m Frosty, it’s very nice to meet you as well. I hope that you will like being here.” The cheetah came over next feeling really happy and excited to meet a real live human. “Hiya I’m Max but friends call me Maxie! I’m so very pleased to meet you!” Max shook Jackie’s hand feeling exhilarated. The owl came in last landing nearby on a chair, looking at Jackie suspiciously said, “… I’m Sage.” Jackie was surprised at how Sage sounded. Jackie took note to not bother Sage anymore than necessary because of his tone of voice. Jackie then looked around the castle. It was roomy with a huge fireplace at the end of the wall. Shiki got everyone’s attention and with a serious expression said, “The reason why I have brought Jackie is so that she can help us”. Jackie was confused as was everyone else besides Shiki and Nix, who seemed to know what was going on. Shiki then told everyone what was wrong with the world. He said that someone from the animal kingdom was in the human world where Jackie was and needed to be stopped. Jackie listened intently as this was really confusing to say the least. It was too much for her to handle and she promptly fainted. Shiki caught her before she fell then turned to the others. Nix looked at Shiki and shook his head, “We should put Jackie in one of the spare bedrooms until morning. She still needs to rest.” Shiki nodded and told everyone that the meeting was done. Everyone left except Nix and Shiki. When Jackie was safe in the bedroom and they were assured that she was asleep, Shiki and Nix went to the Great Room to talk. Nix turned to Shiki and said, “Do you think that Jackie is the right person to be helping us with the mission?” Shiki reassured Nix and said,” She’s unpredictable and she has a creative mind that will be useful in the mission. We can help her with her weaknesses and make them into her strengths.” Nix nodded and went to prepare the room where Jackie would be training in. END OF CHAPTER 1! Next time we explore more of the mission,Jackie’s training and the villain’s purpose.