© 1999 Eric Case, all rights reserved..
especially the right to bear arms since I had a sleeveless shirt on when
I started writing this story!
There are some things in the story that may not be explained all that
well and may leave the audience with questions. If you have the patience
to wait till I release the first three episodes, I think most or all of
your questions would be answered by it then, but if it's something that
can't wait, feel free to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and
I will respond ASAP wth answers to questions, or just to explain things
that aren't too clear.
Tor Eingreth = tohr Ine greth
City fortress on the plains of Eingreth, protects plains from invasion from the Anendin mountains. Large walls and extremely well protected.. militarilly powerful city
Borundine = bohr unn deen
The kingdom with the largest forest in the realm, Borundine is home primarily to wood-elves, and men
Oramune = Or ahh moon
Peaceful land north of Borundine and east of the Anendin. Major city is Tor Isen on the
Kordum = Kohr doom
The uncle of Arden, stole thrown of Ardun from him and "banished" him from the land.
"Sleeping," Jarin replied yawning with a smile on his face that melted the elf's heart no matter how hard he tried to stay mad. He giggled as the elf's frown turned upside down. Arden sat up and looked at the elf who then noticed Arden's slight shimmer.
The elf's jaw then dropped open and he stared at Arden. "You're.... you're... you're the Wigami!" he said awestruck.
"No sir.. not the Wigami, a descendant.."
"You ARE the Wigami!" The elf said more under control. "I see it in you. You are the one who will lead us against Mordak!" Then the elf looked at the boys more closely and noticed they also had a very faint shimmer. The elf gasped, "You're of the Kaya too?" He asked watching the two boys nod happily. "Happy faith!" the elf shouted. "Go we to Cragen?"
"Who's we?" Asked Arden slowly.
"Why yourselves, me, and my.. my partner!" The elf answered.
"Who are you and who is your partner?" Jarin piped up speaking Arden's words.
The elf looked at his feet feeling foolish for his excitement. "I forget myself.. I am Darien of the wood elves. My partner is Darius. He is a human not elf and lives to the north of the forest. And you sir," he said looking at Arden, "are Arden of Ardun correct?" Arden nodded and the elf continued. "Yes I met you when you were a child. You were traveling with Rafiar through Borundine Forest."
"Darien.. Darien," Arden repeated. "Yes I remember you! We were fleeing from the Oramun mountains and were being chased by orcs. You saved us and hid us from them!" Arden said recalling the events.
"Yes that is right!" Darien said. "At that time you were but a cute little boy! I see now you have grown to become a man!" Jarin and Joshia smiled picturing Arden when he was young. "I must go to get my partner.. another of the Kaya like yourselves. Remember Rafiar said they would gather around you when the time came?" Darien asked
"Yes I remember. I do not wish to stay in these woods another night though. Do you know where Tor Eingreth is?" Arden asked. Darien nodded so Arden continued. "We shall make our way across the plains of Eingreth to the fortress, there the three of us will stay in waiting for you and your partner. You must make haste for within the next fortnight I hope to be past the Anendin Mountains."
"My name's Jarin, and this is Joshia," Jarin said holding his hand out to the elf who took it happily.
The three gave an account of the fate that had befallen Islan and Darien sat with wide eyes listening. He was a young elf by elvin standards. Most likely in his 20s with dark hair and blue eyes as well as the characteristically pointed elvin ears. When they tale was done Darien stood. "I must go to get Darius. You should depart at once! You don't want to be caught out in the open of the Plains of Eingreth at night! It was a fair land at one time, full of farmers and small towns. Now little remain. Most live in Tor Eingreth where it is safe."
"Why did the people leave the plains?" asked Joshia softly looking at the elf out of his deep blue eyes that sparkled in the morning light coming through the leafy roof.
"Thieves!" answered the elf. "Bands of thieves maraud through the plains capturing unsuspecting travelers and robbing them. They usually even MURDER them! You must not be out on the open plains at night, or if you are you must keep watch." The elf said quickly.
"We should all depart now then," Arden said rising. "I have not been in these parts in many years since I have been away to the south and across the river Ardaria. Gather your things boys." He said as the boys began to get up and pack the blankets into their packs once again. A few minutes later they were saying good-bye to Darien and were headed south and east out of the forest. "We must keep a speedy pace boys, we have a long distance to travel if we wish to make it to Tor Eingreth by tonight! I do not even know if we can make it walking as fast as we can the entire distance." Arden said. They walked speedily through the forest and nearly an hour later they came out of the forests' edge and looked out on the vast open plains of Eingreth.
"Arden.. what is Tor Eingreth?" Jarin asked looking up at Arden as they came to a stop looking out at the plains.
"It is a city fortress. The walls are greater than that of Islan's. It was built long ago to protect the people of the plains from the trolls and orcs of the Anendin mountains. It sits near the only bridge across from the mountains. There are people there who will give us shelter." Arden said. Joshia asked him how far it was and Arden looked out to the plains and pointed off to the far distance. "Do you see those mountains?" Arden asked. The boys nodded so he continued. "It is nearly at their base.. there is a wide river in between and then the Tor is there. Can you see it?" Arden asked. The boys looked at him puzzled. Arden's sight was superior to that of the best elvin marksmen and he could make out the city next to the shimmering river but the boys obviously could not. "Well it's there," he smiled. "Now let's get a move on!"
They walked quickly down the hill at the forest's edge and into the fertile plain. They walked on for hours while Arden spoke to them about their magic. "You see.. all descendants of the Kaya who are strong with their bloodline have a slight shimmer to them.. the catch is that only other descendants of the Kaya can see it. It's like an id card. When one Kaya comes into contact with another, their sheen increases in strength and often the shimmer grows to a more noticeable level. When you are with me, your sheen grows slightly, but I am stronger with it than the two of you so I see the shimmer in you both always." Arden explained.
"Well you practically glow in the dark Arden!" Jarin giggled.
"Only when you two are around," Arden said. "The same as my sheen gives you strength, yours gives me strength and increases mine. Together we make each other stronger. Understand?" Arden asked. The boys nodded smiling and he continued on for awhile longer.
Joshia then asked, "Arden... you said earlier that our magic was good but also dangerous. What do you mean?"
Arden looked at the two boys. "There will be times when sadness and sorrow tempt you to grow angry. Anger, sadness, hate... they are all lead to evil."
"How?" Jarin asked.
"Hmm..." Arden said wondering how to explain it. "Okay.. when you hate someone, are you likely to think clearly and act in a way that is good?" Arden questioned. The boys shook their heads. "Exactly.. when you fight someone, you must remain calm.. it's strange but you must almost be happy. When you fight out of rage or revenge, it leads to more rage.. anger breeds on itself.. feeds on itself. Especially as Kaya you must both learn to control your anger. When you feel angry or upset, look to something that makes you happy!"
"Like what?" Joshia asked.
"Well think of one another for example. When I fought on the plains I thought of the two of you. How we met.. that type of thing." Arden answered. The boys said they understood and the three walked on in silence for awhile. They had been walking for hours and had only gone about two thirds of the distance when the sun was hanging low in the western sky behind them casting long shadows before them. The boys could now make out the city in the distance but it still looked so far away. They focused on it watching it get closer with every step that was becoming harder to take. The boys had lived in the city as long as they could remember and had never traveled this far on foot before.
Arden on the other hand was watching the rolling hills to the north. He thought he had seen someone moving along the hills watching the three as they proceeded but he wasn't sure. He did feel or sense that they were in danger. His senses were heightened and the boys noticed he started to glimmer. "Arden what is it?" Jarin asked alarmed.
Arden quickened his pace looking at the hills. "Towards the city..." he said as he broke into a trotting speed. "Now towards the city boys.. RUN!" he said as five dark horsemen rode over the hills to the left and behind them. Jarin and Joshia didn't have to be told twice and they started running full speed. "Concentrate on your sheen boys and you won't be tired. Think about your energy and stay calm just like I said. Don't stop running no matter what just KEEP RUNNING!" Arden said. The horsemen were gaining on them. Arden dropped out of stride and stood to face their assailants thinking they were thieves and that he could easily take the five of them down. He was wrong and realized it once he saw the blazing red symbols on their chests. He realized immediately he was dealing with the servants of Mordak and he drew his sword and composed himself. Jarin looked over his shoulder to see Arden was gleaming a bright blue as he built up his energy. Joshia had noticed Arden had stopped too but they both followed Arden's directions to keep running.
When the first horseman reached Arden, he swung at Arden's head but Arden easily blocked and countered knocking him from his horse. He stepped back as the other four riders dismounted and walked towards him together as they joined their comrade. "Well this certainly looks unfair! Are you five sure you don't want to call some friends to help you out?" Arden joked. "I've never fought five dark warriors before so this should be interesting." He said while continuing to back up slowly while the enemies advanced towards him. Then he stopped. "Okay.. I tried to be nice and give you a chance to get back on your horses and get the hell out of Dodge, (lol sorry guys couldn't resist) but you didn't take the opportunity so I'm gonna have to defend myself." Arden said.
The first dark rider lunged forward at Arden who easily side-stepped his slashing sword. Arden countered at the five riders with a wide swing with his sword gripped in his right hand. He then switched it easily to his left to ward off a blow aimed by the rider to his left then he swung the sword in a circle passing it to his right hand to bring it down on the as yet unsuspecting rider to his far right. The blow he delivered was punishing and cleaved the dark man half way down his middle. The rider collapsed making a gargling sound. The remaining four, furious that their friend had fallen now came fast at Arden who continued meeting their slashes and swings deflecting them easily. There were two many incoming for him to take and offensive swings so he needed to even the odds a little, but how? Then seemingly for no reason the dark rider in the middle let out a shriek of pain and fell forwards. Once the rider fell, Arden could see what had caused the rider to fall was Jarin and Joshia who had both returned to his side to help him. "I told you guys to run!" Arden said with less anger than happiness at their brave act.
"We did run Arden! We never stopped just like you said, we just kinda changed directions!" Jarin said.
"AAhh!!" Joshia squealed like a girl as one of the riders turned and took a swing at him. The other two riders continued their advance on Arden, but he was more worried about the third who was chasing after Jarin and Joshia. Arden swung his sword with all his force down on the one riders' sword breaking it at the hilt and then thrust forward impaling the rider to his right on his blade. This left only the first rider and the rider advancing on Jarin and Joshia. The first rider smiled from behind his grotesque mask knowing Arden could not turn his back to help the boys. Arden held his sword up in front of him focusing all his strength and energy to cast his Light Blast spell, and to any Kaya who could see it he became like a pillar of light. The dark riders could both see this since they were the minions of evil and both closed their eyes shielding their faces and dropping their swords. The plains were bathed in the bright light of Arden and both he and his two companions seized this moment to take their enemies off guard, Arden with a brilliant slash of his sword through the midsection splitting him in half at his waist with a blinding flash of light as the energy in Arden's sword killed and vaporized him. The rider seemed to be eaten away in the blink of an eye from his midsection to his head and feet. He then turned to see the two boys stabbing at the disoriented enemy. Arden swung his sword in the last rider's direction sending a beaming blast of white light through him and he too vanished before the boys.
Arden then ran over and lifted both boys from the ground placing one on each shoulder and began running for the city. They seemed to traverse the distance as if they were flying and Arden's feet were merely moving over the ground as a formality. There was no bumping or bouncing of the boys as they leaned over Arden's broad shoulders as Arden ran smoothly and easily over the rough terrain. Within ten minutes they were at Tor Eingreth's gates which were about to close as the sun was sinking below the forest they had left far behind. As they entered the city they began feeling the effects of their long day and the distance they had traveled. The boys feet hurt and their backs ached from carrying their packs so far. Arden too was tired but having learned long ago how to focus his energy on his task, he rarely felt the effects of such a travel. As a child he had fled across the Oran wastelands from his home of Ardun while being chased by horsemen and hunting dogs. He had run three days and three nights without rest, then had swam across the Anendin River to the Kingdom of Oramune that they would pass through once they were through Borundine Forest. He had no sleep over those days since he never broke from his running and he could do it again if necessary, but now he could stand to most any foe and the next time he crossed the Oran wastelands to return home and reclaim his kingdom from his uncle Kordum but first Islan must be freed.
Arden led the way through the city to house of his "friend" who would give them refuge. The boys who had been figuring on another night on the floor of a hut were stunned (to say the least) when they walked up to the entrance to the king's palace! The guard at the gate stepped forward to stop Arden but realized quickly who would be bold enough to walk up to the king's gate and stepped back opening the gate to the large man and his two young friends. Arden was met in a large court-yard by the king's servant Algin. "The king has been expecting you sir," Algin said politely. "This way if you please."
Arden and the boys followed Algin through the palace to the throne room where the king and queen of Tor Eingreth sat in waiting. As Arden walked in the king rose from his chair. "Arden!" he boomed smiling. "How great it is to see you once again! All my house is at your service friend."
"And I at yours," Arden answered. Arden had done the king a great service long ago and Arden knew the king's resources was at his disposal. "Your majesty.." Arden began. "My friends Jarin and Joshia have traveled a great distance today from within the Forest of Elirin to the city today and we are nearly exhausted." Arden said politely. "Under more usual circumstances I would of course choose to speak to you recounting to you the events and details of our journey from the fallen city of Islan, but as you can see.." Arden said smiling at Jarin and Joshia, who both by now could barely keep their eyes open and were yawning uncontrollably, "we could use a good night's sleep in safe accommodation before we get into telling our tale."
king smiled at the two boys he smiled back sleepily through half closed
eyes. "Very well Arden.. Algin, take these three to a chamber and bestow
on them anything they request. Nothing is too good for them and refuse
them nothing. All the services of the palace are theirs before any
others. Jarin and Joshia both marveled slightly at Arden's renown and that
he would be spoken to with such respect by even a king, but such
seemed to be the way with Arden. They sleepily followed Algin treading
along beside their older companion and seemingly one moment they were walking
down a corridor and the next, they were in a large room with a large fireplace
lying next to Arden on a large bed covered in large warm blankets. They
smiled to one another and shared a gentle kiss then each in turn kissed
Arden who was already asleep and laid their heads down as sleep came for
them as well.