Are You Worthy To Join My Party

Opening the Board (Part 1)

Long ago when the world was young a gardener planted the seed for a tree. The tree struggled to grow because the ground lacked the proper nutrients to nourish it. The gardener looked to their 6 children and stated three rules about the tree.

*System Notification*

Rules of the Garden
1.You and your children must never pick the fruit from the tree.
2.You must never cut down this tree.
3.You must never plant another seed from this tree in the garden.

With the three rules stated, the gardener plunged a branch through their heart and used themself to nourish the tree. This sacrifice brought power into this world and the tree began to grow. The 6 children peacefully watched over the gardener's garden for a time. This changed when the eldest child found one of the fruits of the Tree of the Garden. This was the first time since the gardener nourished the tree that it bared fruit. The eldest child bit the fruit and something in him changed and from him sprouted new life. This child, now turned lord became the father of the Elves. He took dominion over the southernmost land of the Garden. Longing to be like the eldest child the rest of the children waited patiently for thousands of years for their chance to each get a fruit. Before everyone could eat a fruit the youngest of the children broke the first rule by plucking a fruit from the tree in secret. He however did not eat the fruit but instead attempted to grow another tree. This event almost plunged the Garden into darkness. The other siblings banded together to stop their young brother and seal away both him and the wicked tree. They understood the power that the Garden had to offer and realized that it must never happen like this again. They sealed off the gardener's Garden from the world outside and left behind the children of the 6th sibling. The children of the sixth would later be known as humans.

The legends of the Garden were recorded in a book by the children of the sixth. They were no longer of the Garden and as such their power faded. With the fading of the power and the death of their elders, the world moved on as you know it. There was however one village secluded on a coast that held onto the secrets of the Garden. They created a book and kept artifacts to hold their power and retain their knowledge. The title of the book is the Garden of the 5 Lords. They maintained this tradition of keeping the wisdom of the Garden until they were struck by tragedy. When a monsoon struck it left only one survivor, he recognized that he had one mission. The world was not allowed to forget about the Garden. The last disciple of the book Went on a journey to find someone worthy to pass the legend onto. He met the first in a long line of Sniders. This fateful meeting of this family led to them taking up the mantle after the disciple passed. The effects of time ensured that the book itself was lost, and only knowledge of the book remained.

Ever since the book was lost the Snider Family was searching for it. After many generations failing to find the book, a clue finally presented itself. This clue brought the family to North America. Here they gave birth to a new Snider family member. The family spent the next 16 years trying to figure out more details from the clue. It is said that the father went mad and murdered his wife, and afterward fled before he could be apprehended. This left the young Snider alone searching for what has plagued his family for many years.

This point brings us to the opening move in this little game of chess. Five months after his parents were gone from his life X Snider had finally tracked down another clue about the whereabouts of this book. The clue leads him to the library of a university in the southern part of America.

"This can't be it.." the young man said as he scratched his head. His dark brown hair bouncing from his aggressive scratches. "They spent their entire lives looking for this damn book only for it to be in a library of some random college."

He reaches forward to pull the book off the bookcase. The spine read 'The Garden of the Five Lords'. He pulls it from the shelf and bounds towards one of the nearby tables in intense focus.

Without looking up from the book X almost walks directly into a couple.

"Hey dude, watch where you're going. You almost walked into my girlfriend." A tawny brown-skinned man with short twisted hair just pulled a young lady out of the way.

"Sorry about that," X said as he continued to run off to find a quiet place to read his book.

"Kids these days," the young lady expressed as her eyes followed X towards the table he was going to.

As he was walking off the couple walked up to an athletic-looking man with short blond hair.

"Zack I am glad you finally stopped being a lovebird and came to study for this anatomy exam we have on Friday. Oh and I love your new hairstyle Elana. The red really suits you." The athletic man pulled out a book titled The Joys of Anatomy.

"Darius, are you hitting on my girlfriend right in front of me?" Zack asked while he was taking off his backpack. The look on his face was serious and aggressive.

Darius lets out a solid laugh before Zack and Elana joined him. "Now we all know that I am not a cheater. Bae would kill me if I ever seriously look at someone else. Besides, I have seen how you treat that princess over there, I can't even compete."

Elana's flushed enough to see her cheeks turn red even through her dark umber skin. She brushed one of her long strands of curly hair out of the way. "Thank you, Darius, now you two get to studying. I have to go and meet up with Adriana downstairs so she can fix my tablet." She kisses Zack on the lips. "Good luck babe." With that, she walks to the stairs.

"So much PDA." Darius chuckled while opening his textbook to the chapter they were studying.

"You jealous?" Zack taunts Darius with a kissy face.

"How about we just try and ace this test, maybe we can double date afterwards as a reward for passing this class. This teacher has been a pain in our asses." Darius says this as he scribbles things in a binder.

"I like that idea you and Em can pick the place," Zack says as he finally opens his book.


"There you are Adriana, sorry if I was holding you up. Thanks for answering my repair request on HeadSpace." Elana sat down next to the young lady.

"No problemo amiga. I love to flex my skills and make money at the same time." Adriana pulls out a bag of tools.

Elana pulls out her tablet and places it on the table. As she does this she sees the kid from earlier sitting at a table by himself. "I will be right back, I want to check something out," Elana says as she gets up and goes over to where he was sitting.


  • Opening the Board (Part 2)

    "This book better be worth all of the effort they put into finding it," he swallows hard and hesitates a moment before opening it. "I really really hope it was worth all of their effort." He exhales slowly to contain his anxiety and starts to peel back the hardcover.

    "Hey, I saw you hanging out by yourself. Aren't you a bit young to be in college?" Elana asked walking up to the table.

    "This library was the only place I could find this book. My family has been looking for it for as long as I can remember." X responded almost automatically without looking up.

    "Really, oh I am Elana btw. What's your name?" She asked as she sat down opposite him.

    "You can call me X," He said as he looked up. "Oh, you are that woman I almost ran into earlier. I really am sorry about that. I was so excited about finding the book that I forgot where I was for a second."

    "What an interesting name, is that a nickname or-" She was suddenly cut off by someone talking over on the next row.

    "Keep it down over there," a man says. "Some of us actually study in the library."

    She lowers her voice a bit before responding again. "What's the book about? It must be pretty important since you said your family was looking for it."

    "It's a really big deal in my family, my father told me stories about how he has been looking for it most of his life." He goes back to studying the cover.

    "That's pretty cool, it is almost like a life's mission. Does that mean you've succeeded in your father's place? Is he gonna be excited that you found it?" Elana's excitement was rising again. This reminded her of some of the anime she would watch with Zack and Darius.

    "I honestly don't know. I'll be sure to ask him when I finally find him again." X was still lost in the book.

    This caused Elana to realize that something wasn't quite right. Growing up in a neighborhood as rough as her's allowed her to see some things. An often occurring one was kids without parents trying to make it on their own. She wondered if this book was what was driving him in life. For the first time, she took a detailed look at it.

    An intricate painting of a red-leafed forest surrounds one tree. That tree is bearing a large mangled crystalline purple fruit with a crow on the edge of the branch pecking at it. The trim of this image was golden and the white gilded text once again pointed out the title, The Garden of the 5 Lords. Oddly enough there was no author on any part of the outer cover.

    X finally opens the book and turns to the very first page. He notices some small text and reads it aloud "The pathways have become connected, the gateway is open? What does that mean?"

    "That sounds ominous. What kind of book is this again?" Elana moves a bit closer to the book. She can see the stain of the page moving. "Are you seeing this?!"

    "I said keep it down!" The man that yelled earlier came from around the bookshelf that was separating their tables. "I have almost no time to study between football and working with my frat brothers. I need peace and quiet." He gets closer to Elana and X. "Of course your loud mouth wouldn't know peace and quiet with where you come from. Do me a favor and drop out so I can study."

    "Who the hell do you think you are? Just because you are some jockstrap wearing bigshot, you think you can boss us around? What are you a cop?" Elana sizes him up.

    "What's going on? Is this loud guy bothering you, Elana?" Adriana said walking over to the incident.

    "Who asked you to butt in? Go back to working landscape and stay out of my conversation." He replied with vitriol. "What is all this trash even doing at this college?"

    *Back upstairs*

    "Do you hear something Zack?" Darius looks over his shoulder towards the sounds of commotion coming from downstairs. "Is that Norman from the football team?"

    Zack stands up and adjusts his glasses so he can see better. "Why does he look like he is arguing with .... Oh shit, it's Elana."

    Zack and Darius quickly pack their stuff and rush downstairs. Upon making it to the confrontation they see Adriana and the boy from earlier trying to calm things down a step.

    X butts into the conversation. "Don't you think this is a bit much? Can't we just go our separate ways and not argue in public?"

    "You need to back up Norman", Zack exclaims with Darius backing him.

    "Oh look another piece of trash steps up to be cleaned out."

    "Okay idiot this isn't 1930," Adriana says matter of factly, "you are always causing issues for people that don't look like you. Parading around all high and mighty. How can you question why she is here when you are only here because you can chase a ball!"

    "Who asked you, Adriana? Just because you aren't the same type of trash as the rest of them doesn't mean you aren't bad too." His tanned face turning visibly red from the growing altercation.

    Suddenly a loud snapping sound could be heard coming from the direction of the book.

    X turned towards the snapping sound and raised an eyebrow. "What the hell was that?"

    Everyone turned and looked at the book. It was snapped closed, and it was floating.

    Elana took a step behind him. "¡Qué chingados!"

    From the book came a deep humming noise, and the area surrounding the book began to ripple like the surface of water when something drops into it.

    Darius turned to Zack "I am not a fan of this, anyone have a clue whats happen"

    Before he could finish his statement there was a thundering snap followed by a flash, then there was darkness.

  • Opening the Board (Part 3)

    Within the darkness X floated unconscious. There was nothing there. If space itself was without the stars it would equal the void found here.

    "Oh Child of the Sixth!" the thought reverberated through the empty space for what felt like an eternity. This caused X to open his eyes. All at once, the noise was gone, but in its place was a ripple across the void that could only be felt.

    Suddenly, many voices converged in one. "The pathways have become connected, the gateway is open. The way forward will only be determined by you. The lineage of the sixth child has found its opportunity for redemption. When you awaken, the mantle will be yours and yours alone should you become a Lord."

    "Huh?" But before X could fully express the thought his eyes grew heavy once more.


    'Why is it so dark,' X thought to himself. As his thoughts collected he could hear something.

    "Where the hell are we?" Darius asked.

    "Definitely not in the library," Zack responded simply.

    "Real helpful bro, you think we couldn't tell that?" Darius says as he gives Zack a playful shove.

    "Can't you two be just a bit more serious right now? We have no clue where we are, and the only person who knows anything about the book that did all of this still hasn't woken up yet!" Elana normally wasn't a stickler, but this was all she could do to keep from panicking right now.

    Blotches of color slowly fade back into the world as X opens his eyes. "What happened?" The grogginess in his voice was apparent.

    "I was hoping you would know," She responded with worry in her eyes. "It seemed like that book did something strange. There was a flash, then things got really dark, and then we woke up here."

    "There seems to be a lot of people that got dragged away with us. Is this the start of one of those Isekai anime or something? Did we all ket killed and transported to a different world?" Darius asked.

    "Bro she is gonna punch you, I don't think this is the time to make jokes like that," Zack responded.

    Their back and forth received a glare from Elana.

    "Oh look, it seems like everyone is gathering at the top of the hill we are on." Darius points to the gathering of people near the top of the hill where it flattens out.

    From the slope of a hill, the treeline of a healthy forest could be seen. Thick trees and shrubs exist for what one could only guess would be miles. In the far off distance appears to be a singular tree towering above all the rest. The orange and red mesh of leaves makes it stand out against its forest and sky backdrop even more.

    "I feel like it would be a good idea to go and check out what is going on in the main group." Zack motions for them to ascend the hill.

    "Not a bad idea, I wonder if anyone else knows what's going on or where we are," Elana responds.

    After reaching the top of the hill the group sees Adriana and Norman on the outside of the crowd. She motions for them to come over.

    "I will give you guys a quick rundown of what we have discussed so far." Adriana pulls her long hair into a ponytail. "First the professor decided it would be good to get the layout of the land. He is going to split us up into teams. One team to map the surrounding area, and another to gather supplies." She sighs. "Muscles over here is leading the scouting team."

    The group shot a quick glance behind her at Norman.

    "Gross, who would make him a leader?" X asked somewhat loudly.

    Elana shoots a hand out to cover his mouth.

    "I personally want nothing to do with him, but I feel like keeping your enemy close is a good idea in times like these. I recommend you guys come with us. I know it would be good to have some people I know aren't going to try and push me off a cliff the first chance they get. I also admire that spunk you have there Chíca. Even though we have only interacted on Headspace I think it would be a good idea to stick together." She raises her knee to stretch. "Decide quickly tho. We will be heading out soon."

    "I don't see a reason why not. You seem like you are really handy based on the work I see you post. I guess we better all get a good stretch in before this hike." She joins in on the stretching.

    Darius leans over and whispers to Zack. "I think Elana is making far too many friends today. First mystery boy and now this spicy lady."

    "She has definitely come out of her shell since orientation. I guess college really is for her. I do have to say though, I'm not stoked to be working with that asshole." Zack stares at Norman who is talking to a group of people around him.

    Then a glare from the sun caught his eye.

    "Hey, mystery guy let's have a little chat," Zack says.

    "Who me?" X points to himself.

    "No the invisible elephant next to you. Of course you, ya imbecile." Zack palms his face.

    X walks over to chat with Zach and Darius. As introductions are happening X looks up to see a crow flying above them in the sky.

    "And for some reason, it was in your school's library. It really makes no sense." X explains.

    "None at all!" Zack exclaimed in return. "Librarians don't typically catalog books without authors. I was trying to find a book on the history of surgery once and."

    "Scouting team fall in, we are heading to the tree line!" Norman barked out the command to his team. "We are going to scout out a mile around the hill in every direction. After that, we will return and help the resource teams."

    It was easy to feel the group's nervous energy.

    "Move it, move it, move it!!!" His football experience could be seen in how he chose to command the group.

  • Opening the Board (Part 4)

    The scouting expedition is off to a smooth start. With the weather being fair, and the sky being clear the scouting group had high morale. This was boosted by their current achievements. So far they have found a river with clean water and many different types of edible plants thanks to Darius's nature skills.

    The entire time they have been scouting X has been focused on the large crow that has been following them at a distance.

    "Hey, Darius..." X was nervous about talking with them after getting them involved in this situation.

    Darius looked up from the flower he was examining, "What's up dude?"

    "Do you know anything about animals? There is this pretty big crow that has been following us for a while now." X turns and points to the bird circling back around watching the party.

    "I don't think that is normal for birds like that, but I am definitely no expert. Maybe it thinks we can lead it to food. Hunters are pretty good about losing prey when they hit it sometimes." He scratched his head looking to find more to say about the situation.

    "Alright everyone, let's move on. We still have a bit more ground to cover before we can go back to the hill." Norman walked on towards the next direction listed on the makeshift map.

    "What a slave driver..." Elana whispered to the two of them. "Better not make him any harder to deal with."

    The group marched on towards the next location with only a few minor scrapes and bruises from traversing the more dense areas. With no major problems confronting them, they made good time to the next location. They were collectively glad for there being plenty of sunlight left as they scouted the last area surrounding the big hill.

    After scouting for a few minutes X returned to looking at the giant bird. It was still following them, however now it was much closer than before. From this distance X Could make out the size of the massive bird. It was at least as large as a man. It flew closer until it was about 200 meters away. (Roughly 2 American football fields. This note is because not everyone can visualize meters.) Once it was there it began to land in a small clearing in the forest. X's curiosity got the best of him. Looking around to ensure nobody was directly paying attention to him, he sneaks off to check out the really large bird.

    "Where does he think he's off too?" Adriana motions towards X who was trying to sneak away.

    "Not sure, but we should follow him and make sure he isn't causing us any more trouble." Elana grabs Adriana's hand and takes off after X.

    "Wait for us, you shouldn't go off by yourselves. What if there is a wild animal or something?" Zack said as the girls walked away.

    "What do you think you would do if there really was one? Fight it?" Darius says before he goes after them.

    "That's a really good point, what can I do against something like that with no weapon?" He adjusts his glasses and joins the 3 of them.

    Norman looks up at the group of people walking away. 'I should just let them go and just mind my business.' He goes to turn around and walk off but then thinks again. ' If I allow them to leave then, other people on this team will question my leadership. Even if they are all trash I can't have people questioning me.' With that, his mind was made up. He would bring them back, even if force was necessary.


    X was almost to the clearing when he heard a branch snap behind him. The entire group of people he has been seemingly intertwined with by fate all followed him. The look of surprise on his porcelain face was apparent.

    "Where are you sneaking off to, kid?" Elana stood in front of him with her hands on her hips. She almost looked like a teacher giving a scolding to a young student. Her curly red hair bouncing on her shoulders with each hand motion in time with her words.

    X raises a finger to his lips to attempt to quiet the group. He then points behind him towards the clearing and makes wing flapping motions with his arms.

    "Ohh the big crow." Darius quietly makes his way over to X so that he could get a better look.

    "The big what?" Adriana cast a confused look over to Zack.

    "Don't look at me, I was just joking about the wild animals." He sneaks over next to the trees lining the clearing next to Elana and X.

    "What exactly do you pieces of trash are doing down there?!" Norman comes lumbering over to the party that is collectively squatting behind trees.

    "Norman you need to keep your voice do.." Adriana goes to quiet Norman and to explain the situation to him.

    "You don't tell me what the hell to do. I don't listen to trash." He grabbed her wrist and started pulling her towards the opposite direction. " Now the rest of you get to skipping back to the group. I can't have something happening and people lose faith in my command."

    Elana holds a hand up to her lips aggressively to try and get the point across.

    "Didn't I just tell you that you don't tell me what the fu...."

    Before Norman could finish his statement rustling of a large creature could be heard coming from just beyond the treeline. This caused the entire group to go silent.

    Suddenly a somewhat deep squawky voice projects from the clearing "There is no point in hiding children. I have been following you all day and you have the subtlety of a drunk deer. You can come out, I am not here to harm you."

    X made eye contact with Elana. "I am going to see what it wants. Since it is my fault that we are in this mess you should take the others and run if it eats me." He took off into the clearing before Elana had a chance to protest.

    Breaking through the shade from the trees X was met by the full strength of the sunlight. The vibrant rays of light delayed his ability to take in the entire scene so he braced for the worst to happen. After a few seconds, he was able to fully open his eyes. The first thing that occupied his vision was the crow. It was at least half a person taller than X. With its oil-slick black feathers and full-busted chest, this bird was a sight to behold.

    "I see you are a brave one." The squawk was slightly ear ringing. "I have noticed that you humans are stuck where you do not belong. These gardens were not meant for mortals to dwell in."

    "How do we get back home?" X's anxiety started to build.

    "You can't." The bird shot back matter of factly.

    "What?! Why no...."

    The bird cut X off mid statement. "Is what I would normally say. However, there is actually a task that I need help with myself that will allow you to do just that." The bird hopped closer to X.

    "What task is it, and how does it help us get home?" X took a slight step back fearful of what the bird could do with its large body.

    "I need you to retrieve a fruit." The bird stretched its wings, eyes still focused on X.

    X scratched their head. "Just retrieve a fruit? That doesn't make much sense. How does retrieving a fruit help us get home?"

    "No my small friend, this is not just any fruit. This is a fruit from the Tree of the 5 Lords. See we of the Garden physically are not allowed to pick the fruit of the Tree. However, you are not of the Garden so, therefore, you are not bound by that same rule. If I eat the fruit from that tree I will have all of the power I need to cast the incantation to send you back to your world." The bird got closer to X once again. "So what say you? Will you handle this task for me so that I can send you and your kind back to your home?"

    X hesitated for a second. He didn't know anything about this world. If he were to just blindly trust this bird and act on its behalf he could wind up in a very bad predicament. However, there were not currently any other options. 'I got us into this mess, then I will take the consequences and get us out of this mess.' "I accept your task."

    "Perfect!" The bird's squawk of excitement caused everyone present to cover their ears in pain. "Then we must bring you to the Seer, they will grant you aid in this mission." The bird lumbered encroaching aggressively towards X.

    X braced his arms quickly around his face and torso. 'Is this where I die?'

    When X finally opened his eyes the bird grabbed him and they were flying. He could see everything from this height. The amber-colored sky brought a thought to mind. The sun will set soon. What will happen then? Will the others be okay?

    Almost as if the bird was reading his mind it responded. "I have a messenger bring your friends back to the hill they started on. They will be awaiting your return from the Seer."

    The sun was behind a very large tree. The tree was large enough to block the sun from the height they were flying at. " Is that really big tree off in the distance, the Tree of the Garden?"

    "Very observant, why yes it is." The bird banked really hard to the left and started to lower its altitude. "We are here, I am sure the seer will be eager to meet you."

  • that is great
  • how about a story related to keysborough restaurant
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