Abby and the Magic Key is a middle-grade magical romp through time and space with thirteen year old Abigail Stewart and her royal ancestor, Princess Elizabeth of Scotland. To mend their broken lives, these princesses, one lost to fear and privilege, the other lost to fear and neglect, find each other across time and space by way of a magic key and learn to believe in themselves, and face their fears.magical Thirteen year old Abigail Constance Elizabeth Stewart, kwn as Abby, is consumed by the burdens of her existence. She is just surviving day to day, living with her mom and her mom's boyfriends. When Abby's father died three years earlier her mother's changed in her grief. Abby is practically raising herself while avoiding the sexual advances of the her mother's latest boyfriend, Jerry. Even as her mom continues to slip deeper into alcohol and drugs with Jerry, Abby is too afraid of loosing anything more in her life to stand up for herself and demand change. She buries all her pain and loneliness deep inside where it is slowly poisoning the rest of her life. To feel safe from Jerry, she creates a hiding place in her attic. One night she is awakened by her mom and Jerry arguing loudly. Jerry crosses the line into physical violence with Abby's mom and threatens Abby with abuse. He charges upstairs to find Abby but she hides from him in her attic sanctuary, paralyzed with terror and quilt over her inability to help her mother or herself. All she had with her in the darkness was her nightclothes and an heirloom key given to her by her Great-Aunt and namesake, Abigail Stewart, her father's aunt. As she hides, she tices a faint golden glow coming from key. She cleans it of old paint and discovers that it is very ornate and jeweled. Exhaustion overcomes her fears and she drifts into a troubled sleep, clutching the key thinking that it is fit for a princess. She wishes with all her heart that if only she could be a princess, then she would have the power to fix all the things that were wrong in her life. The heirloom key that Abby holds is the Key-of-Lineage, the jeweled, golden key created and ensorceled in Scotland in 1152AD by the master wizard Cyril to protect the Stewart line of princesses. The magic functions by acting on the wishes of the princess in such a way that both the princess and the blood line is protected. It has been passed down through history from one princess to ather until it had reached an eight year old Abigail Stewart in the US who is unaware of her Stewart ancestry or the key's true function. But she especially treasured the key after her father died and always wore it on a braided leather necklace. The Key acts on Abby's wish and she is transported to the year 1392 where she awakens and is mistaken for the missing princess. There, in the past, while assuming the role of the lost princess, she learns courage and conviction and how to stand up for herself and face her fears. While posing as the missing Princess Elizabeth, she learns about parental grief, about taking a stand about the important things, and believing in oneself. She finds the lost princess, Elizabeth, and together they foil a kidnapping on Abby as she poses as Elizabeth and re-unites Elizabeth with her parents by demonstrating her new found strengths. The key returns her to her own time and Abby applies these strengths, without magic intervention, to her life in the present, handling Jerry and helping her mother. Finally, she starts a new chapter in her life back in Scotland, this time in the present, with relatives while her mom recovers and Jerry heads for jail. Back in Scotland, she discovers that the part of the keys function is decide on its own when and to whom it is to be transferred. Each princess must use their courage and skills to help ather princess in the Stewart line. Now Abby must save a child from being kidnapped, and possibly worse; the next princess to whom she is to pass the key.
Hampton Carmine has been writing stories since high school in the early sixties when he completed three sci/fi novels that still exist in red ink on pulp pencil tablets as instruments of humility. He was born in the small college town of Oakland City, Indiana where his dad was in music school. His youth was spent in the midwest but he went to college in North Carolina at East Carolina University achieving a degree in Psychology and advanced degrees in Speech and Language Pathology and Special Education. This was followed later by a degree in Computer Science, a career in state service and retirement to help raise a first grandchild. He continues to write Fantasy and Sci/Fi as well as compose music for band and orchestra while living in Raleigh, NC.