The Keepers of the Portals: Marikos Tale

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Namespaces Article Talk. Views Read Edit View history. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Official website. Patrick Somerville. Owen Milgrim is a man suffering from schizophrenia , but hiding his symptoms from his family, including seeing an imaginary brother named Grimsson who looks like his brother Jed with a moustache who keeps reminding him that he is on a mission of some kind. His family runs a successful industrial business and are protecting Jed from accusations of sexual misconduct, something Owen plans on defending him from by providing a false alibi.

Eventually, Owen is laid off from his job and refuses his father's offer of working with his company and accepting his money. He hears about Neberdine, a pharmaceutical company, and signs on to test their new drug which can supposedly cure all disorders. While there, he meets the anti-social Annie Landsberg, who Grimsson explains is the agent he needs to see.

When he speaks to her, Annie keeps him from getting them both in trouble by "confirming" her association to him, but tells him not to "blow [their] cover". Owen complies as he prepares for the tests. In a flashback, Annie smokes in her apartment by herself, crushing up one of NPB's "A" pills while cursing "This is it, this is the last one. Suffering from drug withdrawal and unable to get more from her contact, Annie visits a "DOX STOP", which is an agency that advertises to scrub personal records for a fee and blackmails these "scrubbed" personal records for a fee.

Annie decides to pay for Patricia Lugo's an NPB employee personal information and intercept her latest appointment as her Friend Proxy.

As Annie's facade crumbles at Patricia's inquest, Patricia insists that Annie tell her "why" she wants to be in her pharmaceutical trials. Annie hints at a rift between her and her sister. At the drug trial, after taking the "A" pill, Annie relives the traumatic death of her sister in a car accident. Annie, Owen, and test subject 5 are removed from the group for questioning after the "A" pill test. Annie's results showed prior experience with the pills, and Owen's indicated he did not take the pill at all. Outside head tester Dr.

Muramoto's office, Owen confides to Annie that he refrained in case she needed to activate him.

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Muramoto has Owen recount his core trauma during the session. Insisting he ingested a pill, Owen describes a family gathering that led to his attempted suicide. Muramoto disbelieves Owen and forces him to take an "A" pill. Later while questioning Annie, Dr. Muramoto falls forward and dies abruptly. Fearing dismissal, Annie and Owen remove negative indicators from their files and leave Dr. Muramoto at his desk. Owen tells Annie his actual trauma experience: a psychotic break referred to as a BLIP and meeting Grimsson for the first time.

Azumi Fujita reenlists Dr. James Mantleray, who created the drug but was removed due to personal issues, to lead the project after Dr. Muramoto is found dead. Muramoto has died, and GRTA's reaction causes a hardware malfunction that links Annie and Owen during the next phase of "B" pill testing. Annie and Owen have a shared fantasy that they are a married couple, Lin and Bruce.

Lin works at a hospice and enlists Bruce's aid in tracking down Wendy, a lemur belonging to one of her patients, Nan.

Wendy was stolen by furriers to make into a hat. Lin and Bruce are caught by the furrier and his sons who plan to make them watch them skin Wendy. The Fish and Wildlife Service arrive and get into a shootout with the furrier and his sons while Bruce and Lin escape with Wendy. Lin delivers Wendy to Nan's estranged daughter, Paula Nazlund, as instructed. Lin realizes that she gave Paula the lemur out of hate rather than love as Nan loved Wendy more than Paula.

Paula informs Lin she is pregnant with a son she will call "Greg 'Fuck U Nan' Nazlund", the name of the man driving the truck that hit Annie and her sister, killing the latter and causing the former to blame herself. Returning home, Lin recounts a memory of her and her sister that is actually from Annie's life. At home Bruce is arrested by Fish and Wildlife, claiming he is solely responsible for stealing Wendy. He sees Grimsson watching from the street.

They have an ulterior motive: to find the long lost 53rd chapter of Cervantes ' Don Quixote , believed to possess the power to hold people in their fantasies for an eternity.

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All the while, Arlie's character has been randomly "zapping" out of the fantasy and into the NPB lab, where she sees visions of the real Annie's past. Back at the NPB lab, Azumi begins to notice the inconsistencies between subjects 1 and 9, realizing their unusual connection under the influence of the drugs.

Annie is subsequently taken into questioning by James about her experiences with the "B" pill to see if she should continue her participation in the trial, while Owen and the rest of the subjects wake up from their tests. Annie realizes that her experiences with Owen on the "B" pill are unique, causing her to feel close to him.

Owen, however, worries that being connected to Annie in his dreams is a symptom of his schizophrenia, causing him to doubt the study. Muramoto and is now in grief over his death. Greta Mantleray, with whom he has a contentious and difficult relationship, so that she can treat GRTA, whose intelligence and virtual appearance is modeled after Greta.

The subjects are given the "C" pill and begin the final phase of the trial.


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Annie dreams she is in a fantasy epic with her sister where she is a drunken elf ranger called Annia and her sister is an elf princess named Ellia. Annia is being paid by a dying Ellia to take her to the Lake of the Clouds where the waters are rumored to cure her. Along the way they are taken to a mysterious queen who allows Annia to look in a mirror, where she sees an image of her and Ellie when they are children and remembers who she is in the real world.

Meanwhile, Owen dreams that he and his family are mobsters and that he must wear a wire and inform on them. He meets Olivia, a fellow student who also works as a waitress and a virtual version of the girl he suffered the BLIP towards, and agrees to study with her later. Annie is still trapped in the fantasy sequence, though now she realizes the world is a dream.

She and Ellia continue their quest to find the Lake of Clouds.

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Ellia begins to remember things from Annie and Ellie's past as well. Owen the mobster accidentally discovers that his brother, Jed, has been working undercover for the police, but Jed is killed, leading Owen to go into witness protection. He asks Olivia to come with him, but seven children later he leaves her by jumping out a window.

Remembering who he is and remembering Annie, he transforms into a hawk and travels into the fantasy realm of Annia and Ellia.

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Can Ricco finally confide in his family to take care of it and at the same time keep him safe? He finds Mariko Majo in his search for a rope model. Mariko had her own secrets. She belonged to a family that had disowned her as she had dishonored them.

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But what was that she had done to dishonor them? And she most definitely was running from someone trying to find a safe refuge. Mariko's mother - Maria Hammond - was a rope model to a rope master - Eiichi Hayashi - in Japan who wanted to marry her against his families wishes and dishonor. But she had her reserves on the truth. And becoming a rope mode for Ricco was the only way she could get to the bottom of everything that happened to her in past.

Lying to the world of riders was unheard of. And Ricco was bringing things from his past that could mean a difference between life and death from him and the Ferraro family. Now Mariko brought more war to their front.


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  • How will the Ferraros fight this time? In the midst of all of this will Mariko accept Ricco the way he accepts her and wants her? Another strong plot in the series by Christine Feehan but definitely has a few low points. A little off-putting when the author keeps using the term "giving her the gift" or "giving him the gift" when relating to the sexual scenes between characters. Seems very false. And she uses it in almost every book. I wish she finds some other line for it. There is an elaborate foreplay shown between Ricco and Mariko that could have been shortened a bit.

    As always she has a lot of repetitive statements and descriptions. The readers could still love the book without that.