Yuyan

edited July 2015 in Original Stories
Hey there o/, this is my first fiction I've written and I'd appreciate any feedback on how to improve my writing or the story itself. I've also posted this on RRL under my old name kdragondie.



Anyhow, I hope you enjoy your read. :D



Synopsis: 



The Elder One continues to slumber, deep beneath the ruins of a once mighty kingdom. 



But he won't sleep forever.



TAGS: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, Mature, Tragedy. *Figured id put this up here since the one below is easy to miss.*



Prologue: A New Light. ( Part 1 )

As the morning light fled from heavens grasp, a pair of sand swallows began to stir within their nest. As if willed by the desert itself the pair began to sing. Their song seemed to dance on the very wind itself, as it slowly enveloped the ruins of a once mighty kingdom. As if to flaunt their musical prowess, unaware of the danger that lies below their lovely abode.



South of the ruins, in the midst of the shifting sands stands a village long since forgotten by the whimsical spirit known as time.


However, it is not void of life. It is the last remaining village of a tribe of people known as the Kuh.


In this village forgotten by time itself our story begins.



****


A gentle wind blew over the town bringing momentary relief from the blistering heat. Sandstone structures made up the entirety of the village. The village was split into three parts.


The Inner Ring, Middle Ring, and the Outer Ring.


In the morning hours of the inner ring, a whole assortment of shops could be seen setting up for the day. Food stalls lined the heavily traveled sections of the inner ring, prepping their ingredients, cleaning meat. The blacksmith’s apprentice could be seen shoveling coal into the forge in an attempt to rouse the embers from their slumber.


Tailors could be seen putting new products on display, as leather workers busily skinned hides preparing them to be tanned.


The middle ring, made up the housing and storage area of the village. The size of your home was not determined by your rank, wealth or fame within the village. But by the size of your family, a family of ten or more would live in a large house, five or more would be in a medium sized house, and three or more would be in a small sized house.


This was done to encourage villagers to have more children.


The outer ring, acted as the shield and military section of the village. Warriors would be stationed and trained in the outer ring. A wall no more than 25 feet in height and 5 feet in width could be seen encircling the entire vicinity of the village.


In the middle ring, screaming could be heard as it reverberated out onto the street. Not the screams of war, or the mourning of a loved one, but the birth of a new light.


The squeak of a wooden door could be heard among the screaming as it slowly opened.


The voice that followed seemed nervous and unsure of what to do “Honey are you alright?”. A tall and well build man in his late thirties stood almost hiding behind the door as he stuck out his head to look at the scene transpiring before him.


Charcoal colored hair drooped down in front of his face, barely covering his purple colored eyes tinged with worry.


Hearing the sudden noise suddenly a birth maid glanced over to the doorway. She looked him directly in the eyes before sighing in frustration.


“For the last time will someone keep him out of the room!” She shouted.


Soon a hand appeared on the shoulder of the man.


“Rai, you should know better than to bother them during this time.” A old man with withered white hair said as he fiddled with his beard.


“I-i know but it normally doesn’t take this long!” Rai said in protest, clearly unnerved by the long childbirth.


“Rai, nothing can always be the same.” The old man said as he slowly moved Rai back into the hallway.


“Push harder! I can almost see the head!” One birth maid said as words of encouragement.


As the screaming intensified, the already unnerved Rai began to pace back and forth.


“Is she going to be alright?” Rai asked nervously, he might be the leader of the clan, and the strongest warrior. But before childbirth he is completely unable to help his wife.


“Don’t worry she’ll be fine.” The old man said as he continued to fiddle with his white beard.


“I hope you’re right Rakhi, I really do.” Rai said biting his lip in frustration.


“Your almost there!” All the birth maids said in unison. This has been the longest childbirth any of them had ever experienced.


Soon quiet cry could be heard as it echoed throughout the room.


“WAAH”


“It’s a boy!” One of the birth maids said as she smiled, slowly lifting up the newborn before showing him to his mother. As she began to gently wrap him in a soft white cloth.


“WAAAH”


“And he sounds healthy.” Another one commented.


A weak voice could be heard, as if it was but a mere whisper. “Let me see him.”


Walking carefully to the edge of the bed, the birth maid slowly handed the newborn to his mother’s loving embrace.


The weak voice called out again, though still weak, it was filled with love.


“Hello my little Kou, you have no idea how long I’ve wanted to meet you for.” she said as tears formed near the corner of her eyes.


The weak voice called out again.


“Go get that useless Rai of mine to come see his son.”


“Right away madame Rii.” all of the birth maids replied in unison.


*Edit: Part 2 will be below, apparently it was too long, so each time I edited it I kept getting errors. :3*

Comments

  • Well.. I guess the new forum beat me, can't edit it at all.. lol 
  • Not exactly a writing thing, (and it may be due to some of the current problems of ww's new forum spacing) but you should add more spacing in between some of the lines/conversational parts. It can get really clustered and hard to read when everything is stuck together.
  • I wish I could but every time I tried to edit it I would get an error and there's a time limit to edit it so... yeah  :((
  • Yeah, we'll be fixing that soon, sorry!
  • Okay, you can edit without any time limits now!
  • edited July 2015

    thanks ren.


    Prologue: A New Light ( Part 2 )


    Six long years have passed since Kou’s birth. And with the changes of the seasons much has changed in the continent of Versa’al.


    The Aseriul Empire’s coalition of merchants known as the Aseriul Trading Company. Have been attempting to chart a new trade route from the Aseriul Empire to the Holy Kingdom of Valros. This new trade route would take the empire’s merchants through the vast desert known as the desert of the forgotten one.


    Such a trade route would shave off at least 8 months on the current traveling time to Valros.


    Though every so often, entire trade caravans would suddenly disappear in the desert as if they had never existed.


    To the west of the Wildfire Plains lies the forest of Bluestone. In the middle of the forest a grand city could be seen. Looking as if it had appeared straight out of a fairy tale one would tell to their children. The wall’s seemed to defy nature’s grasp as the rest of the city seemed to radiate its prestige towards the heavens. This was the capital city of the Aseriul Empire, Bluestone City.


    In a bar located north of the commoner district called the ‘Sleeping Fra’. Elders of the Aseriul Trading Company are currently in the midst of a meeting concerning the trade route to Valros.


    The normally voictrous and jolly environment of the Sleeping Fra was dead silent as no one dared to breathe.


    A man with crimson colored hair could be seen sitting at a table with 5 other men. Gripping his wooden goblet so hard that the wood began to squeak underneath the pressure.


    Suddenly the man spoke up, his eyes tinged with anger as his face seemed immovable from its current frown.


    “I think we should disregard the route through the desert and attempt to travel through the elf’s lands in the north at least it’d be safer than this horseshit.”


    Another of the men spoke up, “Mafu’re I understand your worries, however if we do not establish this trade route even after receiving funding from the empire our heads will be on the ground by next winter.


    A man not befitting the image of a merchant spoke up.


    “Trust me Mafu’re any other time and I would be agreeing with you.” A scowl clearly present on the man’s face as he downed his pint of ale, a long scar could be seen over his left eye.


    “Damn those purple eyed demons.”


    All the men at the table bitterly agreed.


    The Aseriul Trading Company had lost 3 elders to their so called ‘route’ through the desert as well as countless caravans.


    ….


    In the embrace of the desert, the town of the Kuh maintained their peace, for the time being.


    ….


    In the middle ring a loud voice could be heard as it seemed to shake the earth itself.


    “Gather around!” The elder shouted, he patiently waited for the youths to gather.


    As his eyes glanced over the crowd in front of him he began to speak. His voice seemed to defy his small stature as if the heavens themselves would bend to his wake.


    “Today, we shall be discussing the history of our tribe!”


    The look of anticipation could be seen across the faces of countless youths before him. the history of the Kuh is one of the things the Kuh take the greatest pride in.


    “Eh boring!” A small boy who looked rather petite and delicate said as his charcoal colored hair flowed in the passing wind, revealing his bright purple eyes.


    “Oh? the history of our tribe is boring to you little master Kou?”


    A look of surprise than shock suddenly appeared on Kou’s face as he stared at the elder in disbelief. A hint of redness slowly crept it’s way onto Kou’s face, as he attempted to hide his face out of embarrassment.


    ‘How could he had heard me! I didn’t even say it that loud!’ Kou thought as his face was dyed another shade of red.


    “Kou, you should know better than to whisper in front of Elder Ru he can hear everything!”


    “Yeah!”, some of the other youths said as they chimed in.


    “Well then, let me enlighten you little master Kou.”


    “The Kuh have existed far longer than any of the so called ‘kingdoms’ on the continent of Versa’al. We act as the guardians of this realm, protecting it from the corruption of the Elder One.”


    “For this very reason, we have stood watch over these ruins for the past seven thousand years.”


    “Why would we the guardians of this realm, stand watch over the ruins of a kingdom long forgotten by the races of the continent and even time itself?”


    “Because deep beneath those ruins, the Elder One slumbers.”


    A look of awe appeared on the faces of the youths, Kou’s face however only changed to a brighter shade of red.


    “Every decade, a portion of his essence will seep out from the ruins. Corrupting all life that happens to be near the ruins, creating creatures we know as ‘Abominations’ and ‘Monsters’.


    Pausing for a short moment to cough, the Elder continued.


    “As you all know, these creatures create havoc throughout the entire realm leaving death and destruction wherever they tread.


    “The first ‘Abominations’ and ‘Monsters’ were created by the corruption of the Elder One! As his essence seeped out from beneath the kingdom of Rafra in the midst of night!”


    Looking at the reaction of the youths, Elder Ru sprouts a wicked smile.


    “The children of the kingdom turned into what we commonly refer to as ‘Goblins’. The knights and pride of the Rafra Kingdom were turned into the monstrosity known as ‘Ogres’. And the lifeblood of any kingdom, the common folk were turned into the plague of the realm, the ‘Orcs’.”


    Looking satisfied by the look of fear on their faces he continues.


    “This is just what happened to the kingdom! Not only did they become corrupted by the Elder One. The vast amounts of wildlife that surrounded the kingdom of Rafra at the time were much more sensitive to his essence, turning into what we refer to as ‘Monsters’.


    The elder takes a small pause and coughs.


    “We are the protectors of this realm, against the corruption of the Elder One. We have carried out this duty before this land was even a desert!”


    “And this is boring you say?” As he motions to Kou.


    “N-no elder.” Kou stuttered out as he was unable to handle all the attention.


    “You are all dismissed, however remember tomorrow evening, Rai will be taking the eldest among you out for your first hunt!”


    “Yes elder!” The rest of the children said as they stood up and bowed respectfully.


    Just as Kou was about to leave Elder Ru’s voice rang out again.


    “Kou stay behind.”


    “Y-ye elder.”


    “You are the child of the tribe's leader, yet you believe our history to be boring?”


    “N-no elder.”


    Fidgeting back and forth, Kou wasn't sure of what to do in front of the furious elder.


    A bitter sigh escaped from Elder Ru’s mouth, as a cold breeze of wind from the north blew lightly against his hair.


    “If you keep this up, I will inform Rai to not let you go on your hunt next year am I understood?”


    “Y-yes elder!” Kou said almost yelping in response.

  • edited July 2015

    Chapter 1: Problem Child.


    Walking barefoot on the cool sandstone bricks which make up the countless walkways throughout the village. Kou began to head towards the inner ring, after enduring elder ru's endless rant.

    'How is the history of our tribe not boring after the 20th time of telling it?' Kou thought as he skipped over a broken brick in the walkway.

    Within the inner ring a whole assortment of shops could be found.

    Ranging from old man Ruku's Smithy, to Aunt Saai's Spindle, and Refreai's Potion Shop. Although Refreai's sanity.. is questionable her potions are without a doubt top notch.

    As Kou reached the entrance to the inner ring the distinctive sounds of old man Ruku's Smithy could be heard as the sound of his hammer rang out.

    *TING* *TING* *TING*

    As the assault of noise faded, one would instantly be assaulted again, this time by a lovely fragrance the smell of freshly cooked food.

    Countless food stalls could be found in the inner ring always cooking away their products and experimenting with new recipes on unsuspecting... buyers..

    Though the population of the Kuh was rather small compared to the other races of Versa'al.

    They surely didn't lack any expenditure.

    As Kou made his way through the inner ring a voice could be heard as he walked past.

    Glancing sideways Kou saw old smith Ruku with his giant hammer still in hand standing in the doorway of his smithy.

    "Hey little kou I heard you made Ru mad again!" he shouted as if his voice wasn't already loud enough, the man shouting was something you could feel as your bones danced from the vibrations.

    Unwilling to give Ruku a clear response Kou just gave him a wink and continued on his way. Second to Ru if you gave old man Ruku something to nag about it would continue on for hours..

    Halfway through the inner ring another voice resounded out into the street, this time belonging to a... more satisfactory owner. Saai the head tailor of the village was sitting outside of her shop 'Aunt Saai's Spindle' drinking a cup of Raju, a strong type of herbal tea.

    "Good afternoon little Kou." Saai said as her voiced melted like honey in the air and soothed those who heard it.

    "Good afternoon aunt Saai." Kou replied in response with a bright smile plastered on his face. Second only to his mother Rii, Aunt Saai was his favorite person in the village. His father was ..another story entirely.

    "Where are you headed off too today little Kou?" Saai asked as she slowly blew air from her mouth onto the cup of Raju in an attempt to cool it.

    "I'm heading over to Rakhi's place." Kou said in response still showcasing his wonderful smile to his aunt.

    "Mm Rakhi's huh? Be sure to give him my regards." Saai said as she still fiddled with her cup in an attempt to cool it.

    Heading through the inner ring to the southern end of the middle ring where Rakhi's place was. Kou decided to take a small shortcut, the alleys of the village were constructed to act as a way for the villagers to escape during the times of war or the worst case scenario of the elder one's corruption spreading to the vicinity of the village.

    The alleys for the most part would be used as storage for some shopkeepers as theft among the Kuh was virtually unheard of. Everyone was family and had the surname 'Kuh'.

    The difference between a Kuh and an outsider is that all the Kuh have purple colored eyes this is a trait that only the Kuh have.

    Darting through the alleys Kou was stealthily moving through the 'Stock' of the shopkeepers trying his best not to damage anything.

    Finally he emerged at his destination Rakhi's place. Though it might not look like much but Rakhi's home has the biggest cellar in the entire village and is used as the primary storage for books of knowledge and the historical artifacts of the clan.

    As he started to approach the door he heard the one familiar voice which he loathed. Elder Ru was currently sitting inside the house ranting to Rakhi about today's so called 'spectacle', the only people who knew he would visit Rakhi was his mother Rii and his aunt Saai, not even his father knew. Everyone throughout the village thought of Kou as nothing more than a troublemaker who enjoyed to pull pranks on unsuspecting adults.

    Although he did enjoy that greatly.

    Kou decided to hide near a crate by the window at Rakhi's house to listen in on their conversation.

    "Don't you think you're being too hard on the boy Ru?" Rakhi said as he slowly weaved his hand through his white beard.

    "Hard on the future of our tribe? If he doesn't start caring about the clan than what will our ancestors think!" Ru spat out in visible anger.

    Rakhi could only slightly smile in response as he knew the truth, the boy Ru hates more than Rai the current leader of the Kuh is one of the extreme few who have actually gone through more than half of the stored knowledge in his cellar.

    "God damn that worthless Rai brat stole the spot of leader right from under my nose and left me with this worthless leader of the elders title, yet he can't even discipline his own son!"

    Rakhi sighs rather loudly. "You still haven't fixed that tempers of yours even in your old age Ru. One of these times you're going to anger yourself to death." Rakhi said as he continued to play with his beard in his fingertips.

    "You will show up to the next council meeting correct RAKHI?" The way he phrased Rakhi's name was as if he was scolding a child.

    Rakhi just stared at Ru and gave him a beaming smile. "Maybe if i'm not too busy."

    Finally unable to overcome his frustration Ru stood up from the table and left Rakhi's house heading to the western part of the middle ring.

    Kou slowly peaked his head out from his hiding spot to make sure Ru was completely gone before coming out. As he slowly emerged from his hiding spot he proceeded to knock on Rakhi's door.

    'Please don't tell me that old goat came back for something' Rakhi thought as he lightly cursed underneath his breathe.

    Moving from his old wooden chair a rarity within the desert, Rakhi headed towards his door.

    As he opened it his frown was instantly replaced with a genuine smile, not one of those fake ones he used for Elder Ru.

    "My if isn't the little troublemaker himself what can I do for you" Rakhi said jokingly poking at the youth standing in front of him.

    Kou stared at the well built man only that seemed to be in his forties, "It's not my fault Rakhi I thought people lost hearing as they got older but it seems Ru's the opposite."

    Chuckling at his reply Rakhi welcomed Kou inside.

    "What book are you looking for today little kou?" Rakhi asked as he played with his beard.

    "I was hoping there was a book on the kingdom of Rafra before the corruption." Kou said as he eyes sparkled with anticipation. Looking at the youth in front of him filled with such excitement over old knowledge left Rakhi chuckling at how foolish Elder Ru is to not see through a mere child's act of disobedience.

    "I think there's one down there towards the left of on the bookshelf near the desk."

    "Thanks Rakhi!" Kou said as he darted towards the staircase leading to the cellar before stopping suddenly for a breath before saying "Oh and aunt Saai says hi!" without missing a beat he raced down the stairs at lighting speed.

    "Heh that one is so silly." Rakhi said ruefully as he continued to weave his hands through his long beard.

    Upon entering the dimly lit cellar it was as if Kou was whisked away to a different world.

    Heading straight towards his goal Kou headed to the left portion of the cellar. Until he found his mark, right on the bookshelf there it was 'History of the kingdom Rafra'.

    Walking towards the table with the heavy book that was much bigger than most of the books in the cellar Kou struggled to get it on top of the nearby table.

    Lifting himself up into the chair Kou traced his fingers across the ancient cover of the book, slowly he opened it to the first page.

    History of the kingdom Rafra.
    By Heather Voltstruck

    Rafra was founded shortly after the age of chaos by the hero of the age Rael Balefrost, The kingdom is without a doubt the oldest among the kingdoms of humanity, our knowledge on the continent is second only to the elves.

    During the 2nd king's reign he embarked on what we call now the 'Campaign of Disaster'. It was a campaign to explore the northern reaches of Versa'al what they discovered was the Veneifer Mountain Range. Filled to the brim with valuable ore, the reason it is known as the campaign of disaster is because within the Veneifer Mountain Range the king's forces discovered the monstrosity known as 'Monsters'.

    Half of the king's forces were decimated in but a half night. Forcing them to retreat however this would be the greatest folly of the king's forces, as they retreated the monsters began to follow their new found food source until they reached the safety of their holds.

    This folly brought forth the age of monsters, thousands upon thousands of innocent civilians were killed and eaten by the countless swarms. That seemed to occur every 20 years from the Veneifer Mountains.

    The kingdom struggled to get a vantage point over the monsters, finally they erected what would be later known as the 'Adventurer's Guild' to combat these fiends and keep their population under control.

    At first it took groups of highly skilled men and women to fight off a single foe, finally the king decided to rank the monsters depending on their difficulty. This was so he could fully use his forces without receiving too big of a loss.

    The guild would later rank these creatures with a simple yet effective ranking method.

    The ranks were as follows.

    SSS

    SS

    S

    A

    B

    C

    D

    E

    F

    -F

    And as such the guild itself took on an appropriate corresponding ranking method for all it's adventurer's as to not send them to their deaths.

    The guild ranking method were in fact the same but with one difference.

    SS

    S

    A

    B

    C

    D

    E

    F

    -F

    Humanity has yet to give birth to a single being of SSS rank and as such it was deemed impossible. Groups subjegating SSS ranked missions must have a total of 15 SS ranked adventurers to ensure victory, and even then it's a flip of the coin known as fate as to whether they will come out on top.

    The Rafra Magicians guild also copied the ranking system of the Adventurer's Guild and formed an alliance with them to work on missions on behalf of the kingdom together.This has continued until the current age, the age of knowledge.

    Throughout the continent of Versa'al the other kingdoms have slowly started to establish their very own 'Adventurer's Guild' and 'Mages Guild'.

    Kou stared at the flickering of the flame lit candle as it slowly went out.

    'Ah I got too caught up in reading I should head back before dad gets home.' Kou thought as he slowly lifted the massive book back into it's resting place.

    Heading back towards the staircase of the cellar, Kou emerged from the cellar to find Rakhi asleep in his chair. Kou grinned as he pulled out a piece of charcoal that he used to draw pictures with.

    The sound of a door shutting could be heard as it echoed out into the street.

    Kou was full of smiles as he made his way home.

  • Are you rewriting the series? I was wondering where you went, the story had high potential but you kinda just left. :P
  • edited July 2015

    Yeah, sorry bout that I just kinda.. lost the motivation to post on RRL.

    I'm working on rewriting some parts of it to fix a few issues. Also I did a lot more world building as of late so mwuahaha more chapters incoming :P  

    Side Story: Prankster

    The village of the Kuh could be described as a small city by some, based on how it was constructed. Throughout the village are countless alleyways that weave in between the inner, middle and outer ring.

    Their original purpose was for the worst case scenario of having the to flee the village as quickly as possible due to the corruption spreading. However they are mainly used as a... exterior storage area by most of the townsfolk.

    The scorching heat of the midday sun continued to beat down on the sandstone structures throughout the village with a fever pitched pace.

    One small silhouette however could be seen running through the alleyways.

    As a bigger silhouette followed dangerously close from behind shouting at the small silhouette.

    "GOD DAMN IT KOU!" old smith Ruku hollered as he chased the kid, earlier Kou decided to see what would happen if he put eruk paste type of glue on Ruku's favorite hammer that he always used when smithing.

    A smile could be seen as Kou dashed between the alleyways.

    Although Ruku might be considered old, he was one of the best warriors of his time only retiring to being a smith as a form of relaxment.

    As he was gaining on Kou the kid suddenly disappeared from his vision.

    "Huff. huff. How the heck did he escape me? I might be old but i'm still a C ranked warrior." Ruku said as he breathed out heavily he was fed up with this child's antics.

    He would often come into forge to only be greeted by a bucket of sand falling on his head. Or like today when Kou decided to put eruk paste  on his favorite hammer...

    As Ruku stood bewildered by Kou's sudden disappearance he eventually stormed off in a rage to the northern middle ring to find Rai and make him stop his child from running amok.

    Shortly after he left Kou emerged from his hiding spot he had set up earlier.  A simple hole in the ground big enough for him to hide underneath and a sand color cloth to cover the hole with.
    His disappearing act had actually fooled Ruku.

    A smile widely spread across Kou's face as he made his way to Rakhi's house.

    As he approached Rakhi's place a childlike glee appeared on his face as he saw aunt Saai and Rakhi sitting outside the house drinking a cup of Raju.

    "Oh good morning little Kou." Saai's voice sounded rather tired as she normally liked to sleep in on most of her days off from the tailoring shop.

    "Morning!" Kou said with a smile still on his face from his mischievous conducts earlier.

    As Rakhi blew air on to the steaming cup of Raju he asked. "So Kou what did you do to poor old man Ruku today? I could hear him shouting from here."
    Kou looked at the pair and smiled.

    "Me? I would never do anything to Mr Ruku."

    Both of them looking at this chuckled softly as the northern winds blew across the village giving momentary relief from the scorching heat.

  • edited July 2015
    Chapter 2: Father.

    As the sun loomed proudly in the sky, a human silhouette could be seen roaming the desert. Suddenly the silhouette stopped and raised it's hand in a hushing motion.

    Behind the silhouette were many smaller silhouette's that abruptly stopped.

    Droplet after droplet of sweat formed near the man's head as a soft gust of wind stirred up the sands, revealing the silhouette's masked by the blur of heat.

    A tall man in his late thirties stood before the group of much younger individuals with his hand in a shh position.

    In front of the group was an emerald lizard.

    A type of monster created from the corruption of the elder one. It's skin was an emerald green as if living to live up to it's namesake, it's skin was tough as a harden sandstone brick and was the size of a small horse.

    As such the emerald lizard was favored by the Kuh for the lightweight leather that was as hard as stone. It would be used for a variety of necessities, the main one being the leather armor worn by the warriors of the village. 

    Wearing plate mail and or any type of heavy metal armor within the desert is amount to committing suicide.

    Clearing his throat silently.

    The man started to whisper to the group behind him.

    "This lizard will be your first hunt." He said as his charcoal colored hair flowed in the wind revealing his fierce purple eyes.

    "Remember, the only dishonor is to die before your foe."

    "None of you are allowed to be stupid am I understood?"

    "Yes, chief Rai." The countless youths whispered as if afraid to breathe.

    The youths split into groups of two, each group had a total of 8. The first group was to try and gouge the beast into their trap.

    The shifting of the sand could be heard as the emerald lizard suddenly sent a glare to the distance, as if it was aware something was hunting it.

    Suddenly the first group emerged from the right side of the lizard with their bone spears in hand.

    Suddenly a low pitched hiss could be heard.

    'Shit this isn't good' Rai said to himself as he began to curse under his breath and ran towards the first group.

    "GO BACK NOW!" Rai screamed in a panic, not caring that he had given away his position. This was because the hiss belonged to a creature that was a much more terrifying existence than a mere emerald lizard.

    A void serpent, the only snake type monster within the desert of the forgotten one. And one of the most dangerous, as if sensing the incoming dread the emerald lizard attempted to flee as it darted across the sand dunes. Once it reached half way the sand swallowed the lizard whole seeming as if it was alive, before revealing the pitch black head.

    The reason the void serpent was one of the most feared monsters in the desert wasn't because of it's venom. But it's sheer size, it could be comparable to a long semi truck with it's load still attached.

    "Kal hurry and take the children back to the village!" Rai screamed as the void serpent emerged from its hiding place.

    Two giant almond colored eyes stared fiercely at the fleeing silhouette's. Suddenly bringing its attention to a man with charcoal colored hair and purple eyes, the snake hissed as if it was disappointed with it's opponent.

    Rai had already long gotten in a battle stance with his black steel spear as he intently watched the serpent for any sudden movements.

    The serpent looked almost intrigued by this human's laughable attempt of trying to fight him.

    Suddenly the void serpent began to release a strong bloodlust, as it swept over Rai as he stared at the creature, sweat began to appear at his brow.

    Still with a amused look in it's eyes the void serpent opened it's large mouth and charged at him. Despite it's large body it was shockingly fast, faster than a normal B ranked warrior.

    Barely dodging to the side in time, Rai brought down his black steel spear on the side of the serpent only to be greeted with a loud *Ting* as he spear did virtually no damage at all.

    He cursed in his mind as he quickly retreated to give himself more room, suddenly the tail of the serpent came down in a fury of strikes.

    As if the situation couldn't get any worse, normally it would take a group of experienced warriors to bring down a void serpent let alone a single warrior by himself. 

    Even if he was the strongest warrior of the village, this still amounted to suicide.

    As he grimaced at the fury of strikes with a flick of his wrist his spear began to blur as he released a fury of strikes with his full power, if he held back he would die.

    The clash of the two powers created waves in the air as the realm energy fluctuated wildly.

    Each spear strike seemed to multiply and became a dozen images of spears would emerge from a single strike. When in fact it was Rai's sheer speed that made this illusion.

    Though you could achieve the same effect by using Realm Energy (Mana) it was normally to a weaker extent than achieving the same through your own physical abilities.

    The void serpent suddenly released an ear piercing cry as it charged to the human able to block its attack. A strong bloodlust could be seen in it's eyes as they seemed to be filled to the brim with a unrelenting fury.

    Suddenly a spear pierced through the air creating multiple ripples in the air, this was an effect caused by fusing the Realm Energy into your weapon it would allow you to pierce and or cut through things that once seemed impossible.

    One of the other supervisors of the hunt Ruka had come back after ensuring the safety of the children.

    The enraged serpent charged blindly at Rai not noticing the incoming spear until it pierced the side of it's throat.

    It stumbled slightly as the sand struggled to support its weight. Releasing a even thicker bloodlust than before the serpents almond eyes almost turned red as it looked at Ruka.

    Though planar energy easily pierced the skin that Rai was struggling to even dent, the reason Rai hadn't used planar energy was simply because he was one of the few unable to do so.

    Relying on his physical prowess Rai's feet dug into the sand as he propelled himself into the air towards the snake.

    Thanks to Ruka's spear wound on the snake Rai now had a way to injure the serpent, once airborne he came crashing down on the same wound Ruka made. Though the *Ting* sound still reverberated this time he was able to bypass the scales effectively impaling the serpent to the sand right before it's mouth managed to reach the defenceless Ruka.

    In the blistering desert, a group of silhouette's hurried to the hunting ground. There was a total of 5 silhouette's as the heat blurred their image. The silhouette's where none other than Kal, Tase, Rase, Nii, and Rufu these five were considered the best warriors and planar energy users in the tribe second only to Ruka and Rai.

    The serpent released a ground shaking hiss as it's enraged body struck violently against the sand. Using it's tail the serpent managed to catch Rai off guard, sending him flying into a distant sand dune a hundred metres away.

    "Rai!" Ruka screamed as he pulled out his black steel short dagger. Glaring at the enraged serpent in it's eyes.

    Hate, pain, hunger, rage, fury.

    These were but a few of the emotions flowing through the void serpents mind as he was lost in his anger.

    How dare these miserable creatures harm it's magnificence self?

    Ruka suddenly began to chant, unlike Rai he was able to use Realm Energy and was able to cast some medium level fire spells.

    [ Light can only shine the brightest before the abyss. ]

    The serpent was currently trying to free himself from the spear that lodged him to a heavy sandstone brick underneath the dunes. As it slowly began to lose blood through the wound on its neck.

    As the chant finished a blinding white light filled the entire vicinity of 300 feet.

    Taking his chance as the blinded serpent hissed in raged, Ruka charged towards the head of the monstrosity. Jumping into the air to reach it's eye level before stabbing down with his dagger on the unsuspecting serpent's eye.

    As the blade sunk into the serpent's eye socket he instantly began to chant another spell.

    [ Fires of the eternal flame, turn my foe into ash so he may dance upon the wind. ]

    As the last word left his mouth a tiny flame appeared on the tip of his dagger still within the eye socket of the serpent.

    Soon a earth shattering hiss of the void serpent's death throes rang out before it's body completely burst into flames.

    As it hissed in defiance, it wasn't ready to die yet. It hadn't even found a mate yet, the look of fear could be seen in the once amused eyes as it turned into ash, a gentle breeze soon followed as it scattered his ashes upon the winds.

    Ruka fell his knees completely covered in sweat, using two medium level spells was actually over his limit but at least he was still alive.

    As the minutes passed the sounds of footsteps came into earshot the five people who arrived feared the worse.

    As they quickly approached they noticed Ruka hunched over. Kal quickly called out to his friend, "Ruka! are you alright!?" a small smile appeared on Ruka's face as he weakly replied "I'll live, go check on the chief he was thrown over there." he said as he pointed the location Rai was sent flying too.

    Rase, Nii, and Tase all hurried over to the mound, upon approaching they found a bloodied Rai lying limp on the ground.

    "Hurry and check if he is alive!" Rase barked out as panic could be seen on his face.

    "He's still breathing brother." Nii replied as the look of panic lessened for a split second.

    "Hurry and gather the clothes in our packs we have to be careful in how we move him." Rase said as he stared at Nii and Tase, both simply nodded and began to work on making a makeshift stretcher to carry Rai back to the village.

    As the sun was beginning to descend from the sky, news of what had happened during the hunt spread across the village like wildfire.

    Inside the inner ring a group could be seen gossiping about the news.

    "Apparently they ran into a void serpent on the younglings first hunt. What horrible luck." Old Smith Ruku sighed as he ran his hand through his hair to move it out of his face.

    "How is Rai doing" A petite woman in her mid twenties asked.

    "At least the brat is alive, as to how well he feels i doubt he's in a very good mood." Old Smith Ruku said as the frown plastered across his face increased. 

    A bitter sigh escaped from his mouth as he stared toward the northern middle ring where Rai and Rii and that troublemaker son of theirs lived.

    "Oh come on honey i'm fine, I only broke a couple ribs and my leg I'll be fine!" Rai said as he tried to calm down his fuming wife.

    "Fine? You call this fine?" The glare he received from the void serpent is nothing compared to the glare of his wife.

    Beads of sweat could be seen trickling down his head as he tried to think of a way to calm her.

    "Mom is father okay?" A soft voice called out in the hallway.

    "Yes your fool of a father will live to be a fool yet again." Rii said as she stared at the man before her. Before standing up and leaving the room with a look of disgust clearly present on her face.

    Sighing to himself Rai slightly smiled 'She's always been so very.. scary when she gets mad.'

    "Kou." Rii called out as she reached the inner hallway of their small home.

    "Yes mom?" Kou replied as he tilted his head in confusion.

    "Don't ever grow up to be an idiot like your father am I understood?"

    Beads of sweat appeared on Kou's face instead this time.

    ".. of course I won't mom."

  • edited July 2015

    Chapter 3: Mother...

    Waking up early in the morning before the sun made it's way into the sky. Rii, wife of Rai and mother of Kou would often wake up at this time and begin to work on several things.

    Rai might be the villager leader in title but in fact most of the policies of the village come from Rii.

    Such as the tribal laws, calculating the remaining water supply before having to move their operations to a different underground well.

    Also she handled subjugation missions and the ordering of patrols of the desert. And cataloging the items they received from caravans that would breach the unspoken barrier of the ruins that they guarded.

    Most of the new cloths and metals came from these caravans as they passed through the desert with a fever pitched pace. Not caring about their losses in the slightest.

    After her morning of calculations were over, she would often head over to Kou's room to wake him up for morning training that was required for all the youths in the village. If she left it to Kou to wake up by himself he would never make a single one of the training sessions.

    As she sighed inwardly.

    Kou wasn't the most gifted psychically. But he outshined the other youths with his intelligence and ingenuity.

    Something he obviously inherited from her thankfully.

    His father on the other hand could be deem the biggest fool of the century.

    But she still loved him... in a way.

    As she approached Kou's bed she could see him squirming underneath the covers. A slight smile appeared on her lips as she grabbed a handful of the covers, ripping them off the sleeping Kou with a single tug.

    Jolted awake Kou stared aimlessly in his room until he noticed his mother looming over him.

    She just smiled and said. "Time to go to morning training Kou."

    Kou could only inwardly curse as he hated the morning training more than he hated Elder Ru.

    As Kou was getting ready, Rii headed towards her room to check on that idiot of a husband of hers.

    Fighting a void serpent solo? really? how much do you devalue your life she thought as she sighed.

    As the old wooden door squeaked open.

    A man charming enough as if he was ripped straight out of a fairy tale could be seen on the bed covered in bandages as he stared out the window before glancing towards the doorway.

    "Morning honey." the man said with a childlike smile on his face.

    All Rii did in response was let out another sigh.

    No matter what she did to reprehend him he still would continue to make her worry if he would one day show up as nothing more than a corpse. Noticing his wife's sigh. "Oh come on i'll be fine in a few weeks!  you know how quickly I heal it's one of my strong points." he said as he winked at her standing in the doorway.

    "Since you seem so spiffy I guess I'll leave the water calculations to you for the next couple weeks."

    As she walked out of the room the sound of a grown man sobbing could be heard...

    Next on her list was heading to the inner ring to visit her sister, Saai and to check up on the gossip in the village as well to see what mischief her son has gotten into. A voice called out. "Bye mom i'm heading to training." Kou said as he grudgingly left the cool sanction of his home.

    Heading into the kitchen Rii decided to bring some dried meat with her and a flask of raju.

    Her sister loved raju more than anything, probably even more than her..

    Walking out of the house with the above mentioned goods in hand, Rii made her way to the inner ring towards 'Aunt Saai's Spindle'. She always found the name of her sisters shop to be slightly amusing.

    The early morning beating of metal could be heard as she approached the inner ring as she muttered "Ruku always such a hard worker."

    Making her way towards her sisters shop a familiar silhouette could be seen sitting outside her shop as if she predicted her forthcoming.

    "Morning sis." Saai called out in a weak voice, she was never a morning person.

    "Morning Saai." Rii returned the gesture, "I come bearing gifts." A slight smile appeared on Saai's face as she looked at Rii's hands.

    "Ohh. is that Raju I see in your hand?" Rii almost began to laugh out loud her sister's obsession with raju..

    "And some dried meat." Rii said teasingly as she dangled the goods in front of her sister.

    She could picture a tail behind Saai wagging back and forth excitedly from the look she had on her face. Finally letting out a slight chuckle as a smile formed on her face.

    "So little Saai has that Kou of mine been up to no good lately?"

    Chuckling Saai replied. "Just like always, that little one loves to tease adults.", "Just the other day he drew cat whiskers on Rakhi's face after he fell asleep. pfft."

    A slight sigh escaped Rii's beautiful lips as she thought of the image of Rakhi with cat whiskers as she began to laugh herself.

    "So I take it you heard about Rai already?" Rii said as she let out a audibly long sigh.

    "Oh you mean how Rai got tossed around like a child in front of a void serpent and Ruka barely saved the day by medium level fire spells and is now bedridden with a fiver?"

    Looking ruefully at the approaching sun as it reached the highest point within the sky, the blistering heat of the desert rained down on the village.

    "Sigh. that husband of mine literally enjoys making me worry." Rii said as she sipped a cup of raju.

    An amusing expression appeared on Rii's face the taste of the raju registered on her tastebuds. The bitter taste was rather strong, she wasn't able to understand how her sister could put down as many of these drinks as she does.

    "I will never know how you manage to drink so much of this stuff." Rii said looking disappointed at the cup.

    Saai just looked at her and cheerfully said. "You're just missing out." as she stuck out her tongue in protest.

    Although Rai was technically the leader of the tribe many throughout the tribe knew the true leader was in fact Rii. Most of the Elders however disliked this as the thought of a woman being in control of their village unnerved their ancient attitudes on the world.

    As Rii left her sister's shop she proceeded to head towards the outer ring to inspect the village walls and determine if they needed to increase the amount of guards around the village.

    The act of a void serpent coming so close to the village as to be just within the Kuh's hunting grounds unnerved a lot of the villagers throughout the village.

    And it was her job to make sure they remained safe.

    As she was walking along the wall she would often stop and greet the patrols of guards as they made their way through on their morning shift.

    After the sun was midway on it's decedent from the sky she started to head back towards home, dropping by the elder's building within the inner ring to drop off her reports, and the water calculations.

    As she walked towards her house the baked sand taste assaulted her tongue as she spat out in disgust.

    She would soon remedy that awful taste with a nice meal for her and little Kou.

    And maybe some mush for that husband of hers.

  • edited July 2015

    Chapter 4: Morning Training.

    Law of the village states, all youths from the ages 5-17 must attend morning training.

    This was one of the things Kou completely loathed, as he was just like his Aunt Saai... not a morning person at all.

    Not to brag or anything but his physical capabilities are complete and utter trash.

    Kou could even be mistaken as a girl.

    His only strong point was his intelligence and ingenuity at tricking his dueling partners at morning training.

    Feigning injury so he could achieve a sneak attack.

    Throwing sand into their face.

    Nothing was off limits to Kou as he fought he would use any trick or underhanded method he could think of. The phrase his father likes to say to all the youths on their first hunt. "the only dishonor you can bring is dying before your enemy does." was drilled into him since he was small.

    Most of the fellow youths in the village hated fighting against Kou in morning training for that very reason. Even if it was a training match he would treat it as a life or death brawl..

    That was a part of Kou's tactic to make his opponents clumsy when facing him giving him some much needed breathing room.

    His current opponent was much the same, Rufra one of the tallest of their age group at a shocking 5'8 he was often mistaken as adult but he was one of the biggest cry babies in the village.

    Him and Kou have fought a few times all resulting in Kou using cheap tactics to overcome his strength and sheer size advantage.

    Kou looked at Rufra and snickered. "Come on cry baby Rufra let's get this over with." As he taunted him with his index finger.

    Rufra just stared back at Kou and said. "You are not tricking me this time Kou!" as he kept his guard up.

    The smile on Kou's face only got wider the heat of the sand could be felt as he inched his foot one step closer at a time.

    The fear was apparent of Rufra's face he knew Kou doesn't play fair and was trying to look out for his countless sneak attacks.

    Grabbing his wooden dagger on his waist Kou acted as if he was going to charge at Rufra causing him to flinch.

    Instead Kou threw his dagger at Rufra and quickly grabbed a handful of sand and rushed over towards Rufra gripping his other dagger with his left hand.

    As Rufra dodged the wooden dagger flying at his face, he was greeted by a faceful of sand.

    Courtesy of Kou, blinded momentarily Kou took advantage of his opponent's weakness subduing him in the time it took to breathe a single breath.

    "Enough! Winner of the duel is Kou" Kal's voice sounded through the training grounds their duels would be in full view of all the other youths, some of the adults would also come to watch these amusing bouts.

    Kou extended his hand towards Rufra to help him up only to have it slapped away as Rufra gave him a glare as tears appeared near the corner of his eyes.

    "You wouldn't win if you didn't always cheat." Rufra mumbled under his breath, his losing streak to Kou was extremely embarrassing for him.

    Kou just looked at him and gave him a wide smile before going to sit with the rest of the spectators.

    "Next up is Rik and Mae." Kal's could be heard throughout the crowd this was a by product of using the wind planar energy on your voice to increase its volume. Something Kou's father was unable to do so whenever he had to give speeches he would always have to shout as loud as he possibly could.

    Rik was a well built adolescent a nice slender face and cold calculating eyes. He preferred using a saber as his weapon as opposed to the sword or daggers like Kou uses.

    Mae on the other hand used an odd weapon she made up herself, it was the combination of a blade on a spear pole with the spear tip itself on the bottom of the weapon. As odd as it seemed she was quite good at using it.

    Rik much like Kou enjoyed taunting the others youths before the fight began trying to make them slip up to present an easier way to win.

    Mae however was not one to be taunted lightly, she simply ignored everything that came out of Rik's mouth she has seen him used this tactic on other youths before.

    "Shut up and fight." Mae said as she dug her hills into the sand and launched herself forward in a downward slash. Catching Rik off guard he suddenly leapt to his right trying to avoid the oncoming blow, as he released a fury of strikes of his own only to be met with a sideways swipe of Maes weapon.

    The sound of wood meeting could be heard as Rik's saber blocked Mae's weapon.

    She looked rather dissatisfied that he was able to block that.

    Quickly twisting her weapon over her head in a whirlwind like fashion Mae continuously released downward strike aimed at Rik as he struggled to parry them. In a desperate attempt to switch the pace of the fight Rik charge forward as his saber seemed to form into 3 strikes mid air only to be met with countless strikes coming from above.

    The sound of wood meeting could be heard again however this time a victor was certain. Rik lied on the sand with a fierce look of defiance on his face as Kal announced the winner of the match.

    "Mae wins!" Kal said as his voiced propelled itself throughout the crowd.

    Mae and Rik both moved sit among the rest of the crowd, one happy, another furious.

    "That will conclude our mock duels for today!" Kal said as he used the realms energy to make his voice annoyingly loud. "Continue to train on the dummies until it's time for the run."

    As he walked away the youths all begrudgingly got up and moved towards the field of training dummies.

    The training dummies were created in different shapes, some for monsters, others for abominations and the rest where for human shaped opponents.

    Kou slowly made his way to a human shaped dummy as he gripped his twin wooden daggers.  He began to rapidly strike the dummies vitale spots, neck, armpits, between the thighs, every strike was with the purpose to kill not to maim.

    After the morning warm up was complete they would be forced to go on a run on the inside of the wall around the village. They were required to do 10 laps, afterwords they could practice on their own until mid afternoon where they would be free to go play and the like.

    As Kou repeated his strikes time seemed to slow down to him everyone else would move slower. However this occurrence was something that happened randomly he was unable to control when it would happen.

    The voice of Kal could be heard as it reverberated throughout the training area. "Time for the laps get to it!" Everyone began to sigh as they put their equipment away and began to run in the blistering heat.

    This was Kou's least favorite part of the day, although one could zone out when running ... the demon known as 'Kal' would randomly send a strike your way with one of the wooden training swords.

    Unless you fancied eating wood it was best to keep aware during the run.

    by the time everyone else had finished their 10th lap Kou was barely on his 8th and looking as if he was going to pass out any second. But the demonic Kal cared not and continued to prod the boy along for the last 2 laps.

    Kou fell to the ground dead.




    Tired.

  • edited July 2015
    Chapter 5: Realm Energy

    Within the realm of Ul-fra lies a mysterious energy that is inside every living creature and even some inanimate objects.
    Even corpses contain a hint of the energy before they are fully decomposed.

    We refer to this energy as the 'Realm Energy' other tribes have often called it by another name known as 'Mana'. It is unknown if the goddess of life Freya intended for this energy to be within this realm or not.

    Being able to manipulate this energy is determined at birth. 

    Some people will simply be unable to use it. No matter how many years of effort they put it in. A perfect example of this would be the current leader of the Kuh. Rai Kuh, in his early childhood dreamed of being a 'Realm User' (Mage) as we call them however fate can be a very fickle being.

    The energy within the realm of Ul-fra can be attributed to the elemental planes. The energy acts as a medium between its user and the elemental planes allowing the user to draw on the power of the elements.

    The elemental planes are as follows.

    Air
    Water
    Earth
    Fire
    Light
    Darkness

    However calling upon the power of a elemental plane might be impossible if you have a strong affinity with another.
    For example a Water Realm User wouldn't be able to use the power of the elemental plane of Fire.

    Unless you were born with a extremely rare high affinity for two elements you would be unable to use the power of any other elemental plane.

    However the rarity of being born with two affinities is an enigma of itself. There has only been one human in the history of mankind to accomplish this feat. And among the other races of the continent of Versa'al the elves have only produced 3 themselves, however they are more in tuned with the elemental planes than we could ever hope to be.

    The beastmen and the dwarfs.. however have not produced a single Realm User with a dual affinity.

    ...

    Within the cellar of Rakhi's house a flame flickered as the movement of a page caused it to dance.

    Kou was in the midst of reading a book on Realm User's and also day dreaming about being one himself. As the saying goes like father like son.

    Some affinities are more common than others.

    Fire, Earth, Air, Water are the most common affinities, while Light and Darkness affinities are extremely rare and are highly sought after by various powers in the realm.

    The affinity of Light allows the user to call upon the plane of light to heal the wounds of their allies, or to blind and exorcise their foes. The affinity of water has a similar healing method but it's much weaker than the one possessed by the a Realm User of the Light element.

    The affinity of Darkness is one of the most sought after, due to it's capabilities of stealth and assassination. Most link the darkness element to evil however that is untrue. Though several spells of the darkness element could make a person reconsider..

    The best age to test for Realm Energy affinity is between the age of 10-12, it allows the body to grow to a suitable host as to not .. explode themselves.

    Let's just say it's unwise to have a young child with the destruction capabilities of a mythical creature running amok.

    ....

    As the flickering of the flame illuminated the shadow of young Kou as he continued to read countless books varying from ancient lore, to history of various kingdoms.

    The thrill of adventure contained within the words struck the musical cords of his heart as it was slowly ingrained into his very being.

    Reaching for a book he once stumbled on before called 'The great flame dragon Uzoma.' he thought the title was a little odd the first time he saw it sitting on the wooden shelf covered in dust.

    As he grabbed the book the feel of the rough leather immediately elated him, tracing his fingers back forth between the letters on the front of the book as he slowly opened it to the first page.

    .....

    The once prosperous Elder Fra Alliance was situated on the southernmost end of the Versa'al continent. It was a land filled with countless marvels, as the land was rich in resources, the races that occupied the land truly flourished in it's peace filled borders. It was a literal paradise on the chaotic continent of Versa'al.

    That was until the great flame dragon Uzoma descended from the Greyfrosts, looking for a place to make his lair. Reports from the refugee's say the first to fall was the Borge Garrison near the Shallowsky Mountains. The Garrison was the home of the elites of the Elder Fra Alliance used to act as a deterrence to the dwarfs who lived in the Shallowsky Mountains.

    Borge Garrison, fell in but a single fortnight under the onslaught of Uzoma and his flamespawn.

    As Uzoma continued to soar deeper into the Elder Fra Alliance, millions died from his wanton slaughter. His flamespawn minion's making up the majority of his ground forces.

    Flamespawn minion's are a spell used by dragons in order to create servants that won't die from their flames, that are constantly released while sleeping. Though they might be a form of realm energy they are truly fearsome. The only way to kill a flamespawn is to destroy it's realm crystal in the depths of it's head.

    Within but a mere week.

    The armies of the Elder Fra alliance who were some of the strongest knights within the entire realm of Ul-fra were slaughtered like sheep by their shepherd. In the capital of the once prosperous country the great flame dragon Uzoma made his lair.

    Countless parties under the sanction of the Adventurer's Guild have attempted to root out the evil known as Uzoma from the southern lands, however to no avail leaving the guild no choice as to rank Uzoma as a undefiable existence. Effectively abandoning the southernmost lands of the Versa'al continent.

    As Kou glanced up to see how much of a candle wick yet remained he sighed upon seeing most of it completely gone.

    How he wished he could continue to read these stories nonstop.

    Slowly he closed the leather bound book and got off the chair before putting the book back on the shelf.

    'One of these days Rakhi is really going to have to dust down here like hes suppose too..' Kou thought bitterly as he coughed from the dust lingering in the air.

    Making his way up the stairs that lead out of the cellar a familiar face could be standing on top of the stairway.

    A smile broke out on Kou's face. "Well if it isn't cry baby Rufra, what brings you down here to my lovely adobe?"

    Rufra silently stared at Kou as he openly mocked him. He wasn't aware that Kou would ever be caught in a place like this let alone reading books.

    "What are you staring at?" Kou said mockingly as he stared at Rufra as he suddenly turned bright red and began to stutter his words.

    "W-why are you always so m-mean?" Rufra managed to stutter out as tears formed near his eyes.

    "M-mean?" Kou copied the way Rufra stuttered.

    And without batting Rufra another glance continued his way up the stairs passing the tearing up Rufra.

    After coming out of the cellar, Rakhi glanced over towards Kou as he was sitting in front of the table reading a paper of some sort.

    "Little Kou, you should really stop bullying Rufra one of these days you might just regret it." Rakhi said as he stared at the youth in front of him.

    Kou looked over at Rakhi and poked out his tongue and made a "Bleh!" sound before leaving the house.

    Rakhi sighed, though Kou could be extremely kind to people, he often had a mean streak a mile wide and more often than not Rufra would be on the receiving end.

  • edited July 2015
    Chapter 6: First Hunt

    A year has passed since we last saw Kou. 

    And the time has finally come for him to go on his first hunt.

    However, the continent of Versa'al has never been one to remain silent. The Aseriul Trading Company have begun hiring mercenaries in mass, to the point that even several officials of the Aseriul Empire have been ordered to keep their eyes on this suspicious activity.

    Four months earlier, during the summer festival in the Wildfire Plains, the Aseriul Trading Company sent an endless stream of caravans through the desert. Hoping to overwhelm the purple eyes with sheer numbers.

    The Kuh however used their vast knowledge of the desert to aid them in their desperate struggle to keep the outsiders away from the ruins. The last thing they needed was to have a outsider catch even a mere glimpse of the ruins. That would truly lead to disaster.

    As one could imagine, it was a very tense time in the village. A crowd was formed in the inner ring as Elder Ru talked to the crowd.

    "These outsiders have no idea what their folly is capable of causing! We cannot let them get near the ruins!"

    Many of the crowd in the inner ring agreed with the Elder.

    ....

    For most of the year Kou did morning training, read countless books, and bullied Rufra simply because he liked to look at his crying face...

    In order to become an adult within the Kuh, you must go on a total of 3 hunts during different times of your life. The first hunt is usually conducted at the ages of 7-10, and is more of a group type of activity than a real solo hunt. Dipping their feet in the water so to speak.

    The second hunt is conducted at the age of 13-14, the participants this time however are split into a buddy system. For the next few years you will be stuck training, fighting, and eating with your partner. This is done to help give the young a motivation to advancing their strength in this perilous time.

    The third hunt is the last and final test of adulthood in the village, It is the most dangerous of the hunts, a complete solo hunt, no one will be supervising you or will have your back. In order to pass the third hunt, you must at least bring back 2 E ranked monsters, or 1 D ranked.

    Normally the first hunt is supervised by a team of 3 adults, normally the village chief will always accompany the youths on their first hunt.

    However dragging around a wounded man with a group of youths would be like ringing a dinner bell for all the creatures that roam the area.

    ....

    A lone caravan entered the outer reaches of the desert of the forgotten one, not full of common goods, but that of armed men.

    Distinctive sounds of a group of Kyr (A type of tamed giant lizard often used as mounts within the desert. ) could be heard as they shouldered the extra weight of the armored men as it added to the already heavy sand wagon.

    The stench of sweat could be smelt as it lingered in the air, the soldiers hiding within the caravan had all chosen to wear a type of plate mail armor that still allowed fluid movement of the joints, although it wasn't very heavy the desert is a very unforgiving place to the unprepared. And they had been given a contract that if they succeeded they would have enough coin to join the ranks of nobility how could they back out now?

    "Kagr."

    "Krga."

    Sounds of the Kyr could be heard as their webbed feet dug inches into the sand with with lifeless eyes as every step brought the caravan closer towards the uncharted territory of the purple eyes.

    The Elders of the Aseriul Trading Company have had enough, this time they would strike back against those damnable purple eyes even if it cost them a arm or a leg.

    ....

    The supervisors for this hunt would be increased from the original 3 to 5 for added safety measures. The last thing they wanted was to repeat last years failure of a hunt.

    On this hunt a couple familiar faces will be joining us.

    Mae, Rik, and cry baby Rufra.

    Once the sun was midway within the sky, the familiar voice of Kal the demon resounded throughout the meeting area near the west section of the outer ring.

    "Today we shall be taking you all on your first hunt." He said as he indicated  with a hand gesture to his surrounding companions who would be also supervising this hunt.

    "In honor our our leader who is unable to come here due to injuries.. I shall say his piece for him."

    "The greatest dishonor is dying before your enemy does."

    "No one is allowed to act stupid understood?" Kal said it almost too perfectly as if he had imitated Rai many times before.

    The small group of youths nodded their heads, this years batch was one of the smallest, compared to last years this one would only have 4 youths in total. Mae, Rik, Rufra, and Kou where the only ones who would be going on this hunt. The small group and their 5 supervisors headed out of the western gate of the village.

    Kou ran little bit ahead of the group, as he left through the gate upon exiting the village he could feel the burning sensation of the sand between his feet, finally he would be able to go on a adventure!

    ... Even if it was a supervised hunt..

    "KOU! GET BACK IN LINE NOW." Kal called he was visibly angry by Kou's recklessness.

    Kou sheepishly turned around and let out a sigh as he returned to his spot, still enjoying the sensation of sand between his toes.

    The first hunt would normally be taken in the safest hunting ground of the Kuh, however due to the appearance of last years void serpent, Kal and the others decided against going there for this hunt.

    Today they would be going to the western hunting grounds, E through D ranked monsters could be found within these grounds as well as some of the original species of the desert.

    ....

    The western hunting grounds were 7 hours away from the village and naturally this would be an overnight ordeal. The other reason of choosing the western hunting grounds was the fact that none of the outsiders have ever been spotted entering it. As they continued to walk among the countless sand dunes which made up the entirety of the desert of the forgotten. Kal had decided to 'impart' some knowledge about the hunting grounds to the youths.

    "Within the western hunting grounds, there are some creatures you should watch out for if you ever enter the area without us guarding you," Kal said as he paused for a brief moment to rub some sand from his eyes before the expression of relief showed on his face.

    Continuing.

    "The lowest grade monsters in the western hunting grounds are mostly E ranked, the highest ever seen here is D ranked. Some of the E ranked monsters include, emerald lizards, Sand Spiders,  and Sand Eaters."

    "The D ranked monsters are; Rock Salamanders, and Ivory Sand Locus."

    "For your first hunt we will be aiming for E ranked monsters only, if we do encounter any D ranked monsters I or one of the other supervisors will deal with them accordingly." As Kal said this he was currently staring directly at Kou, who was happily kicking the sand with his feet at Rik who was steadily starting to grow annoyed.

    "What?" Kou said as he noticed Kal staring at him.

    Sighing, Kal continued to move on as he continued with the dangers of the desert 'speech'.

    "Emerald lizard's skin are as hard as sandstone bricks, giving their hide the toughness of stone but the weight and flexibility of common leather. This is why most of the warriors in our tribe use Emerald lizard hides for our armor."

    "One single emerald lizard is able to be made into 2 sets of emerald lizard armor if handled by a skilled leatherworker and tailor." Mae, looked excited as Kal explained this. She has always liked the green colored armor most of the people within village would wear. Hoping one day to have her own.

    "Sand Spiders, are one if not the most annoying monster to deal with as they often burrow themselves within the sand much like the Void Serpents method of hunting, waiting for the prey to come to them. The one thing you must watch out for are their extremely long fangs, while the venom isn't deadly, it isn't something you will enjoy."

    "KOU KNOCK IT OFF!" Rik yelled as his patience had finally broke.

    Kal turned and gave Kou a glare as he instantly stopped kicking sand at Rik while pretending to whistle as if he had done nothing at all.

    "Kou, knock off your crap or I will send you back to the village with Ruka. Am I understood?" Kal said as he continued to glare.

    "AM I UNDERSTOOD?" Kal said in a loud voice as he waited for an answer.

    "Y-yes." Kou said as he reluctantly gave in.

    The sounds of Mae giggling could be heard, as Kou instantly gave her a glare.

    All she did in response was stick out her tongue and go "Bleh!".

    The soft mumble of Rufra could be heard as he whispered the words to himself, "Bout time he got in trouble." A hint of a smile could be seen on his face.

    "As I was saying. Ah where was I." Kal stood there thinking for before having an ahah! moment.

    "Sand Eaters, are one of the easiest monsters within the western hunting grounds to handle, As their name implies they eat sand and usually mope around during the day only moving at night. they can be anywhere from the size of a small dog to that of a Kyr in size."

    "Although their size is usually used to deter predators, they are actually rather defenseless."

    "We will be reaching the hunting grounds soon, no more whispering among yourselves." Kal said as he made a signal to hush with his finger.

    As they entered the western hunting grounds Kou's heartbeat began to skyrocket as the boring journey here was worth it, this would be a real adventure!
    Minutes of silence soon turned into hours.

    Not a single monster in sight.

    Kal turned towards the group and whispered.

    "This is very strange, we would have normally at least  encountered a Sand Eater or a Emerald Lizard by now."

    To his right Ruka also spoke up. "I've never seen it so silent here before, what happened to cause this?"

    "I am unsure but be sure to remain by the supervisors you four." Kal said as hint of worry appeared on his normally stoic face.
    Signaling Ruka and the others to follow, Kal continued his way onward deeper into the reaches of the western hunting grounds.

    ....

    As the Kyr struggled to pull the sand wagons that made up the caravan, the soldiers inside have almost reached a baking temperature. Finally removing their armor before dying from heat stroke although this was a dangerous move as it left them defenceless in the act of an ambush.

    Relief, sweet relief.

    The caravan halted, setting up camp for the night. Traveling through the desert wasn't a quick process, It was through much trial and error that the Aseriul Trading Company found this route which decreased half the traveling time between the Aseriul Empire and the Holy Kingdom of Valros.

    They had the option of going around the desert of the forgotten one, however doing so would take them almost a year. Which was an unsatisfactory amount of time for the merchants of the Aseriul Empire.

    ****

    Tick, tock, the sigil operated clock sprung it's valves as the gears began to twist and turn before suddenly releasing a small amount of steam into a small copper pipe that made a whistling noise as the steam exited, signaling the arrival of the mid day.

    A figure stirred within the slightly dim room. Almost hidden behind a pile of papers on the desk. Lavish crimson red hair flowed behind the stack of papers, as a small gust of wind came in through a  crack in the window. As the figure was feverishly scribbling away, the quill broke. Ink slowly covered the hand in a dark colored liquid, as it ruined the document the figure had spent an unknown amount of time on.

    This was Kyr the greatest scholar of the Holy Kingdom of Valros, beast tamer, alchemist and Grandmaster of sigil mana contraptions. Kyr had worked on an important document requiring a disgusting amount of time. It was to prove the existence of a new type of energy. It had the same power as mana or perhaps more but the color was vastly different.

    Mana could be normally seen as a blue type of energy. As all the elemental planes Mages drew their powers from all used this type of blue energy. However what Kyr was researching was the existence of a purple type of energy. She had spent over a decade on this research. Her hobbies seemed to attract the nobles of Valros, her clock contraption using a mana sigil to generate heat and water creating steam within the device to twist gears silently and releasing the hot steam as a whistle during key points of the day. This and her taming of the so called 'Kyr Lizards..' had earned her the title of a marquis within the kingdom.

    Time and time again this mysterious energy had eluded her, however this did not damper her hopes.

    ....

    Silence.

    Dreadful silence assaulted the group as they carefully made their ways towards the village, though the short cut would take them through the area of the western hunting grounds that D grade monsters where more often to roam was worth the risk.

    This unnatural silence carried the scent of foreboding in it.

    Suddenly a hand gesture stopped the silhouette's advancement.

    One of the bigger silhouette's moved forward carefully he watched the movement of the sand, looking for any indication. Even noticing the lightest shuffling of the sand could determine the difference of life in death.

    Most of the monsters within the desert are Ambush types, however a few do roam it's great expanses openly.

    What is there to fear when you are the greatest danger in the desert?

    A hand gesture signaled the silhouette's to move forward. This was the one area they needed to pass through quickly. Even though they could deal with D ranked monsters, the Ivory Sand Locus was known to swarm together with it's kind. Sometimes the swarms would even form to ungodly proportions and ravage the kingdoms on the borders of the desert of the forgotten.

    As they hurried through this dangerous area, something noticed their movement.

    "We must pick up the pace we will be able to reach the village before the sun sleeps beneath the earth." Kal said as he glanced towards the western sky, soon they would be in the embrace of night.

    As if to fulfill their fears. A shadow passed through the wind as speeds impossible for humans to consider plausible.

    Targeting Refrei who was currently in charge of keeping Kou out of trouble.

    As the shadow darted towards the group, suddenly Kal and Ruka noticed the approaching danger however the speed was simply too fast, unable to react in time, the shadow tore it's way through Refrei's chest. Blood began to spill from her mouth as the crimson droplets rained down on Kou who had just glanced upwards to see why she stopped moving.

    Drip.

    Drip.

    Drip.

    The taste of iron filled Kou's mouth as he stood there blanky unable to register the transpiring events.

    The shadow then darted towards the other silhouette, known as Rekia just before it reached her, the tip of her spear began to radiate in light as a elemental light spell known as [ Blind ] quickly assaulted the shadow's vision.

    The blur of her spear could only be seen by herself as the light had blinded everyone in the vicinity.

    The tip would suddenly turn into 7, then merge back into a single tip.

    The shadow had been stabbed a total of 7 times. As it's black blood oozed out from it's wounds, dispelling the darkness spell [ Shadow ] as it revealed a Bone Eater Rat a A ranked monster. Known for it's speed and it's ability to bite through flesh and bones as if it was soft mud.

    Kou stood there in a chanted like state. A adventure was the thing he dreamed about, standing before an unknown land or lost city as he fought to obtain the riches within.

    Refrei's corpse had fallen onto Kou, blood slowly trickled from her mouth as the lifeless eyes stared in his. The sounds of Ruka, Kal and Rekia resounded through the air as their words turned into a white noise before the ears of Kou. As the events transpired Kou just laid their blankly as the blood dripped onto his face.

    "Ruka! check to see if Kou's ok." Kal shouted, he had known that Refrei was dead the moment she had been struck.

    She had been his training partner in his 2nd hunt, and the two had grown close to each other. However Kal had no time for mourning yet. The danger would only increase as the light dwindles from the sky.

    "Kou! hey kou!" Ruka called out to the boy, nothing seemed to wake him though he hadn't been wounded physically, mentally he had been unprepared to face the cruelty of life. Death.

    As the group of children stared in bewilderment as to the scene transpiring before their very eyes. The voice of Kal resounded the area. "Ruka carry Kou, I and Rekia will drag Refrei's body with us. We are almost to the village we cannot leave her to become food for these damn monsters."

    As the group made it's way to the village, the mercenaries of the Aseriul Trading Company had a more lively time within their encampment finally free from the confines of their plate mail.

    "Captain. What should we buy with all the coin once we get back?" A burly man with silver hair said as the flames of the fire gleamed off the greataxe bound to his back. Though they had removed their armor for the sake of not baking to death, weapons were another story.

    "Heh, I know what I will buy when we get back. The best prostitute in Bluestone." The man said, blue, fierce eyes could be seen within his black hair.

    Strapped to his side was a sword which handle had a golden inscribing that read. 'Red Gorge Mercenaries.'

  • edited July 2015
    *Note: Though this is really.. short, it's more info/lore based than a real side chapter. It's main purpose is to help build up the universe Yuyan is taking place in. Also i'd greatly appreciate any input on my story. Be it grammar or just story side or.. my bad naming sense.*

    Side Chapter: The Elder One

    Time has no corridor through it's vastness. One must simply join the flow or be left behind.

    In the plane of creation where time itself first began to pass, a elder goddess slowly made her way into a castle made out of crystallized light energy. Each of her steps caused the light element to reveal a visible tremble. Materials that would leave countless mortals drooling from their sheer rarity furnished the interior of the light crystal castle. A head of a tri-element dragon god could be seen hanging over an archway that led deeper into the castle, as the rays of light intersected with the castle a beautiful light show began. 

    Finally reaching the deepest part of the castle, the goddess stopped and glanced towards a throne situated near the center of the large conclave room.

    This goddess was none other than the ruler of the plane of creation and the bringer of life, Freya.

    Though she had not always been the ruler of the plane of creation, no before her a being corrupted by power ruled the heavens.

    The Elder One.

    Though he had not always been corrupt. He was once the father of all life including Freya herself, however the eons of time slowly ate away at his once brilliant soul.

    As her golden eyes fixated upon the throne a memory within her soul stirred.

    *Flashback*

    "Freya my child." A man who could be said to be the embodiment of perfection with long golden hair sat in his golden throne in the midst of a castle made of a crystallized light energy.

    "Yes father?"  Her own gold colored hair reached her hips.

    "Soon I will be no more." He said this as he stared he directly in her eyes.

    "I have made a prison for myself to be put into once my soul finally succumbs."

    "But father how can you not fight against it?" She said as she had a worried expression on her face.

    "I do not know how but my soul itself is slowly becoming undone by this corruption it isn't something i'm able to stop." He said with a sigh.

    "I have spent a massive portion of my power to create the plane of exile, I want you to put me into this planar prison once I can go on no longer."

    *End of Flashback*

    Though Freya had been able to vanquish the Elder One to the plane of exile. The sheer act of doing so nearly drained her of her power. She would be unable to take action in the mortal realm of Ul-fra for the foreseeable future. Even though she could still hear their prayers, she was left unable to answer them.

    In a decree since the absence of the Elder One left a bitter taste in the mouths of the inhabitants of the plane of creation, Freya put forth an order that would put the mortal plane of Ul-fra under the guidance of the younger gods.

    Each of the younger generation had a plane they themselves ruled over.

    Olfra God of Earth.

    Makeia Goddess of Water.

    Mer God of Wind.

    Ragi Goddess of Fire.

    Zajo God of Darkness.

    Lighe Goddess of Light.

    And the younger generation of gods began their observation of the Ul-fra plane. Though in the plane of exile, the Elder One had finally given into the corruption and in an attempt to escape the prison shattered his very soul. Causing a tear in the planar walls between the material planes, allowing a portion of his soul to escape to the plane of Ul-fra. Where his soul is slowly healing itself, in time he will awake from his slumber.

  • Chapter 7: The Village.

    The feeling of the shifting sand underfoot, each step contained thoughts of caution, anxiety and fear.

    Finally as the sun was about to retreat to beneath the land, the village came into view. But, what greeted the weary group was not the warmth or safety of it's walls nor the loving faces of their family. Instead heart wrenching screams filled the air as they danced upon the wind. As if the tune of death was being played by the man himself.

    A Horde.

    The size of nothing ever seen before had besieged the village of the Kuh, not in their seven thousand years of existence in the realm of Ul-fra had they ever witnessed a horde on this scale. The sand for countless miles in front of the village was obscured by the sheer mass of the horde.

    Soon, the agonizing screams filled with terror were replaced by the low pitched sounds of growls. The growling could be heard quite clearly as they fought over the corpses to feast on.

    It was as if the coming of night had signaled the end of the Kuh.

    Or was it just the beginning?

    *****

    The white oak seemed perfect, as a distinct metal sound was heard below the clock's face. Slowly the clunking of the gears become more distinct as the sigil operated clock began to move into motion. A small fire based sigil began to release a small portion of heat. After coming into contact with a water infused sigil the heat created a minute amount of steam that steadily began to build up.

    As the pressure continued to build within the inner chamber of the sigil based clock, a small copper pipe protruding from the top portion of the white oak body suddenly began to release a high pitched whistle as steam rapidly left through the small pipe. The sound could be heard throughout the mansion of the most renowned scholar of Valros, Kyr.

    A common saying among the common folk is 'rumours travel upon the wind'. This is a very true statement in the capital city of the Holy Kingdom of Valros, Holyflame City. It was the early morning as shops started to get ready for the approaching day ahead of them.

    In a small tavern on the west side of city, located near the slums. A rumour had spread from the bars of the common folk to even the tabletops of the 8 noble families of Valros in mere hours.

    This rumour had even traveled it's way to Kyr. As she was in the depths of her mansion conducting research. One talking of demons with purple eyes living in the vast expanses of the desert of the forgotten one. Preying on unsuspecting trading caravans.

    The rumour itself was lackluster in its overall appeal to Kyr. however a single word had caught her attention, She began to tap her finger impatiently on the hard oak desk.

    As she slightly pursed her mouth she uttered a single word, "Purple."

    *****

    "Captain, we should have met some resistance from the purple eyes by now. I'm not liking this."

    "It does feel a little fishy, keep your guard up, we have to keep going."

    The caravan of soldiers slowly continued their advancement into the purple eyes territory, expecting to encounter a sudden ambush at any moment.

    They had heard stories from the other caravans of the ferocity and ingenuity of the purple eyes as they used the desert to ambush and destroy unsuspecting caravans that had wandered into their lands.

    Soon minutes turned to hours with no sign of the purple eyes.

    As if the desert itself had decided to pick up the fallen torch left behind from the Kuh. The winds started to pick up, slowly the winds started to pick up slight amounts of sand as it moved in every direction. Before it finally became a raging gust, a sand storm.

    It forced the caravan of soldiers to seek shelters within their sand wagons as the sand storm almost threatened to bury them alive.

    "What sort of magic is this!?" One man shouted as he huddled himself near the exit of the sand wagon.

    "The kind that the gods control." The captain said with a sly smirk.

    Though the sandstorm had nearly buried their sand wagons they were able to dig them out with much effort, in fact they had wasted 2 days in order to dig themselves free from the clawing clutches of the sand.

    The result of the massive sand storm was the concealment of the ruins, as if the gods had some sort of pity for the tribe who continued to guard the ruins until they were forgotten by time itself.

    It wouldn't stop the corruption from leaking out, however it would stop the stupid mortals of this realm from venturing towards its inner levels. Where the corruption would even try to devour your soul.

    On a golden throne in the midst of a grand castle, a feminine silhouette could be seen talking to a man who kneeled in front of her, dressed in a sand colored robe.

    "It is truly unfortunate that the guardians have been dispatched of." the feminine silhouette said, her voice would seem enchanting to any living being male or female.

    "I have made a short term solution for the problem, however a few of the guardians still yet live, though are too small in number to be used." the sand robed man said as his voice seemed to carry an ancient tone within it's youthly nature.

    "Sigh. If only the Elder One didn't try to escape from the plane of exile I wouldn't have to deal with this headache." The feminine voice said as it spoke the 'Elder' with a hint of remorse.

    *****

    In the Wildfire Plains, the headquarter of the Aseriul Trading Company resides in a small city known as Blueleaf City. Their hopes and very heads themselves laid resting on the success of the Red Gorge Mercenaries. 

    "What if they don't succeed?" A man began to pace back and forth.

    "Calm down Mafu're, they are the best money can buy if they can't we will be joining them soon enough."

    The Red Gorge Mercenaries hail from the Red Gorge near the Veneifer Mountain Range, where monster swarms often happen every 20 years. It is said that a mercenary of the Red Gorge is worth 20 normal men.

    And as they are the best money can buy, their services are naturally.. quite expensive.

    The hunting group had seen what could not be unseen, Kou had been in a shocked state for nearly two days, simply unresponsive. Ruka, Rekia, Mae, Rik, Rufra, and Kal had simply seem stupefied by what had transpired before them the 2 days before.

    Their home was now just rubble as it was used a nesting ground for the Horde.

    "T-teacher what should we do now?." Mae finally broke the suffocating silence as the tears dried to her face were quite visible..

    "I truly don't know Mae." Kal said as he stared at the makeshift grave he made for Refrei.

    Ruka suddenly spoke up.

    "We should leave the desert, we cannot protect the ruins just by ourselves and if we are dead how could we honor our ancestors?"

    "But where would we head to Ruka? you know as well as I do we don't know the language of the outsiders." Rekia said with a look of disdain present of her face.

    It was Ruka who ruled out trying anything to help the village and to simply hide and hope the horde didn't notice the stench of fear.

    "What would you have us do instead Rekia? sit here and wait for our already decreasing supplies to run out?"

    "I think we should head to the forest of the ancients." Kal said as he stared at the group in front of him.

    "The elves are probably the only ones who would remember our language."

    "How is Kou's condition Rekia?" Ruka said with a hint of worry on his face, Kou had been simply unresponsive since the death of Refrei, and hasn't been informed of the destruction of the village and the deaths of his parents.

    "He still isn't responding to anything, I had to force water down his throat so the spoilt brat wouldn't die from dehydration."

    As the adults of the group continued their discussion of where to head towards the remaining youths, Mae, Rik, and Rufra started talking amongst themselves.

    "Is Kou going to be okay?" Rufra asked as he stared at Mae.

    "I thought you hated Kou bullying you why are you worrying about that brat?" Mae said with a frown across her face.

    "But."

    "Rufra, I know you closed your eyes when the fight happened but what happened to Kou isn't something that just goes away on its own." Rik said as he stared at the lifeless Kou resting on the ground near them.

    "It's almost too creepy to see him not up and causing trouble." Rik said with a sigh.

    *****

    The Red Gorge group after finally freeing themselves from the clutches of the desert began again on their approachment into the Kuh's lands.

    Soon the scout signaled the group to stop.

    "What did you see." The Captain barked as his patience in this desert had grown to almost nothing.

    "There's the remains of a village uphead, but we shouldn't go near it captain, a swarm has made it into their nest."

  • edited July 2015
    Chapter 8: Damn Desert.


    Each step, digging deeper into the sand as the leather boots filled with sand yet again.

    "How in Freya's name do these damn purple eyes live out here!"

    One of the younger of the men shouted out in disgust, he had loathed the entire journey here let alone spending another month or two in this desert to hunt down the purple eyes.
    As he untied his shoe to get the sand out he noticed he was getting silent glares from the rest.

    "W-what?" he stuttered out in surprise.

    "You little goat, you know as well as we do the purple eyes are masters of ambushing do not give our position away for mere sand being in your boots!" the vice captain barked as he glared at the younger lad.

    Then a sudden hand come up which stopped all the buffoonery.

    "See captain what did I tell you, there is the village with the swarm still using it as their nest."

    "So it is Josha so it is." The captain said as he held his chin in deep thought.

    'Poor purple eye bastards, no one deserves a fate like this.' He thought as he let out a sigh before issuing a command.

    "Don't just stand there wetting yourself over a mere swarm!"

    "Krist take a group of men with you and scout the outer edges of the village there might be some survivors."

    "Captain don't tell me where going to help them?"

    "No you bloody idiot. We still need a head or two to say that we dealt with them."

    Though fate can be whimsical, they had come here for money and would be leaving with it. Even if they had to resort to digging up a fresh corpse for their head.

    As this same exact time, the group of Rekia, Kal, Ruka, Mae, Rik, Rufra, and Kou were beginning to pack up their camp and start heading towards the forest of the ancients. which is north east of the kingdom of Valros, though it's north of the Valros the ones in control of the forest is not Valros, but the Elves.

    Just as they began to move towards the north east, Ruka suddenly stopped the group with a hushing motion.

    "What is it?" Mae whispered as she was afraid to talk.

    "Shut up, enemies." Ruka barked back, hiding his body near the sand.

    In front of Ruka was a group of 15 men in plate mail armor, and one of them had a giant axe strapped to his back.

    "Well, what do we have here?" Krist said as he noticed the raise in the ground.

    "Seems like a fresh grave."

    "Well what are you waiting for? dig it up." Krist said with an impatient tone.

    After a few moments the contents of the grave came into view.

    "Poor lass, wonder what did that to her."

    "Stop wasting time and cut the head off so we can get out of this bloody desert."

    As the conversation was happening another one was happening amongst Kal and Rekia.

    "What are they doing?"

    "That's Refrei's..." Rekia stuttered, alarming Kal to what was happening.

    "There digging her up?!" Kal said with a hint of worry.

    Suddenly a man drew a short sword made of steel. It glistened in the sun's brilliant light. Before chopping down in a violent motion.

    Soon the very same man who swung his blade, leaned down to grab something. It was none other than Refrei's head.

    "Now that we have this we can leave this fucking desert!" The man holding the head said with a hint of excitement.

    Suddenly the man with the great axe glanced at the sand hill where Kal and crew were currently hiding.

    Grabbing his axe with one hand, he held his finger towards his lips and said, "Boys looks like we have some more 'survivors' we should go pay them a visit." A disgusting smile could be seen on Krist's face.

    He became a Red Gorge Mercarnie not for the fame or wealth, but for the slaughter.

    All while.

    "Ruka they've spotted us we need to go!" Rekia shouted in a low voice.

    Soon the group had made a decent amount of distance from the hill, before realizing something.

    "Kal I thought you had Kou with you!?" Ruka said as he began to glance at everyone around him before realizing no one had grabbed Kou.

    "Forget him or we will all be dead once they catch up to us!" Rekia said as she didn't even stop for a split second. As the group slowly approached the hill, they fanned out in order to trap what ever was lurking behind it.

    But what came into their vision was quiet what they expected. A small petite girl with purple eyes and charcoal colored hair.

    "Oh what do we have here?" Krist said as he glanced at his most unfavorite prey.

    "Vice-captain, look theres other footprints leading away from here, they just left her here."

    Pausing for a moment Krist put his great axe back into it's strap.

    Walking up to the child he reached he acted like he was going to punch the girl, but even when he stopped one inch from the child's face nothing happened, no reaction at all.

    "No wonder they left this one, it's damaged." Krist said in a sigh.

    "But we can at least make a bit more coin if we sell her in the wildfire auctions to some old noble."

    "True." Krist chuckled in a loud bollerious tone that made the sand shake slightly.

    "Josha, grab the kid."

    "Ah fuck. Why do I have to carry this thing?" Josha said quite displeased that he would have to haul this brat back with him in this blistering heat.

    "Shut up and do it or I will make you carry the head as well."

    "Fuck my luck." Josha silently mumbled underneath his breath, before grabbing the kid.

    "Hey someone help me strap this thing to my back so I can actually move." Josha said with a look of distress.

    "God you're so helpless, you are lucky the reason we keep you around is for your scouting skills and not your problem solving skills." Krist said as he grabbed a leather belt from his own straps he used to carry his great axe with, although it would make his axe move a little bit more it wouldn't compromise it's usage.

    Once finally done, Krist and co finally moved out staying to the outer edges of the village away from the swarms sense of smell.

    "How much do you think this brat will sell for?" Josha asked in curiosity.

    "I don't know that would be up to the captain if he wants to sell it or just kill it." Krist said with a dejected look, although he was vice-captain the captain was still way above him in strength.

    It was one of the main reasons he joined the Red Gorge Mercenaries, when the captain went all out it was simply incredible, it would send shivers down your spine.

    As if to be interrupted by his daydream, the image of the captain could be seen off in the distance.

    A voice called out, "Krist I let you go off and you come back with a head, and a child strapped to Josha's back." The golden engravings on his sword seemed to shine in the sun.

    "Captain, we thought we could sell this one to some old noble at the wildfire auctions for a little extra coin, and look we already have a head." He said as he motioned to the head he was currently holding.

    Nodding as if in agreement with Krist's line of thought he let out a smile.

    "Then what are we waiting for?"

    "Time to leave this damn desert!"

  • Chapter 9: Journey ( Part 1 )

    As the night approached, the mercenaries made camp for the night. Moonlight seemed to dance in the air as if it was but a fleeting mirage. Through the illumination of the moonlight three sand wagons could be seen. Each wagon had a group of four Kyr lizards near the front as they laid exhausted on the cool night sand.

    The group of mercenaries had begun to roast some left over salted blood ox meat. As the flames flickered sparks would be occasionally swallowed by the darkness of night.

    The men no longer wore their light steel mail, if one saw the group from a distance they would think of them as nothing more than a mere trade caravan headed back from Valros.

    Inside one of the sand wagons, the wood slowly creaked from the pressure of the armor inside. In the pitch black storage wagon a young adolescent was bound by ropes soundly asleep, it had been so for the past three days.

    As the camp's fire continued to dance to the tunes of the night. A scowl could be seen on the face of a man no more than thirty years of age. Black muffled hair covered his left eye, with but a look you could tell he was a man of battle, a man of death.

    Scars of a battle long passed littered his arms, crisscrossing their way up to his shoulders. A single scar could be seen over his right eye as the dullish blue color seemed to emit a light of defiance.

    Slowly he reached into his pocket of the worn out pair of trousers, pulling out a slightly brown cloth, he bent down to unsheathe his blade with one hand, he laid the blade on his lap and began to slowly rub the cloth on the blade.

    As the flame flickered in the darkness, time continued to dwindle.

    Prior he had told his men he would take the night watch. The abyss of night did not cause fear of any kind in the man, instead it allowed him to relax.

    As the moonlight continued to dance in the night sky, he glanced towards a sand wagon, quite the well built things he thought, made of a iron bark wood found in the Wildfire Plains. They had wheels that would detach when you approached a desert like the desert of the forgotten one, it was common to put on the black steel skee’s as they made traveling amongst the dunes fairly comfortable.

    As his mind drifted, he found himself admiring the golden inlay on his sword.

    Gifted to him by the founder of the Red Gorge Mercenaries, Alphonse Red. A man of few words, but without a doubt one of the strongest in the continent.

    The battle that caused him to be awarded with the blade almost took his life and along with his mens.

    It was suppose to be but a mere guarding mission, but it went south, fast.

    The fiefdom of Kal’re in the northern corner of the Aseriul Empire, was a farming land with rich and abundant grounds. The surrounding forests also provided a wide range of game that brought wealth to the nobles in charge.

    They were guarding the western portion of the estate of the nobles who ruled the Kal’re fiefdom, the Am’er family which roots could be dated back to the last war against the forests of the ancients, over five hundred years ago.

    The mission for the most part was unsatisfying, it was given for disobeying an order from a superior to torch a town of civilians near the borders of the forest of the ancients, apparently they had been consorting with the elves.

    But I couldn't bring myself to do it, thus I ended up with this guarding mission as punishment.

    It was quite boring honestly, until the third night a sudden howl could be heard. Suddenly the grunts of thousands and the beating of beast skin drums could be heard.

    “Fuck!” I had realized what the sounds were instantly the plague of Versa’al, the Orcs.

    Quickly the alarm was raised, but not quickly enough the fiends came from the north and east, torching the estate.

    The Am’er family had little time to salvage the ancestral relics of their family, forced to flee to the town square.

    As the breath of night showed no release from the nightmare. Shouts and screams could be heard off in the distance, there wasn't enough time, not enough.

    I quickly recalled my men to guard the Am’er family as we approached the square of the town, The Orc warriors charged blindly towards us as if their lives meant little to them.

    Three sudden shots.

    Three orcs fell to the floor dead, Josha might be shit at everything but he is one hell of a scout, his usage of the bow is something else. Breath taking almost. Almost.

    Grabbing the chunk of iron strapped to my side I strode into the Melee while issuing out orders to my men.

    Countless Orcs descended on us, before the arrival of the morning light broke the abyss of night, bodies littered the floor, men, orcs, women and children as the ground was dyed with a mixture of green and red.

    Orcs blood, nasty stuff, it was a vile green color that emitted a stench that would make the most hearty veteran quiver at the knees.

    The outcome of the fight resulted in three hundred human casualties, mostly civilians that were unable to flee fast enough, and fifty five of my own squadron of a hundred.

    The orcs fared no better, of their original attacking force of a thousand, nearly seven hundred of them had fell before they sounded the retreat.

    Most of the fiefdom lied in ruins.

    ....

    The flickering flame seemed to swallow everything within it, darkness, thoughts, fear.

    It was a gift that allowed mankind to be free from the fear of the night.

    Or was it a simple ploy by the gods to pull us towards the light it emits.

    Light, slowly broke on the horizon as the multi color sun rise brought forth a new day.

    Slowly the cold of night was replaced by a blistering heat. Sweat, slowly working it’s way from your brow to your feet, nothing left unscathed.

    It would take another fifty seven nights to reach the Wildfire plains.

    As if stirred by the light, a small figure lightly moved within the sand wagon.

    Hands bound by rope, as the irritated skin shone red in anger.

    Light slowly flickered past the eyes of the figure as the blurry figures around him came into shape.

    “Where am I?” the words sounded hoarse.

    A thirst unlike he had ever experienced overtook him as he laid bound by the ropes.

    Helpless.

    As the sun greeted the desert with it’s full embrace. The encampment began to move.

    Slowly packing the pitched tents, pulling the fabric off before thoroughly shaking the excess sand off.

    Sand.

    It never ceases to amaze, it gets into everything.

    This was one lesson bitterly learned by the Group of Mercenaries unaccustomed to the desert.

    A few of the men walked over to feed the Kyr’s as their scales shined in the sunlight, emerald green light danced on the top of the sand.

    The golden inlays of his sword shone even brighter underneath the onslaught of light.

    “Josha, keep a look out, I'm off to bed.”

    The man who looked towards the source of the sound replied with a firm nod. Approaching the sand wagon he heard the shuffling of movement within. Armor pieces banging against shields. A smile crept onto his dreary face.

    “Looks like sleeping beauty woke up.”

    ****

    The rustling inside the sand wagon brought a slight smile to the man's dreary face. As it could only mean one thing, sleeping beauty had finally woke up. Though his steps were tired and sluggish, he made his way to the entrance of the sand wagon.

    Slowly he opened the door and light flooded the darkness.

    ‘Huh?’ Kou thought as he noticed his bindings, the only sight that greeted him was darkness.

    ‘Where am I?’ thoughts surged forth like a endless dam that had just burst.

    Suddenly light filled the darkness, blinding, light.

    “Ahh!” Kou cried out in pain as he used his hands to cover his eyes.

    Standing at the entrance of a door, was the man referred to as ‘Captain’ by the mercenary group. A slight chuckle made it’s way into the air as he stared at the kid covering his eyes.

    “Well, bout time you woke up sleeping beauty.”

    The language sounded like gibberish to Kou.

    ‘Huh? is he an outsider?’

    “Uncle Ruka!” “Aunt Rekia!” Kou cried out.

    But to no avail.

    “Hm, that’s the first time i've heard that language before, and i've traveled around the continent quite a bit.”

    Again the words sounded like mere gibberish.

    “Please take the ropes off!” Kou said as he held his arms in front of him.

    A snicker appeared on the man's face, he understood what the kid wanted. Shaking his head he mouthed the word, “No.”

    He started to walk over, reaching with a hand he grabbed Kou by the jaw.

    ‘Hmm. a girl? looks like a male to me, still won’t affect the price too much.’

    With a flick of his wrest the the boy was sent to the floor with a thump. Staring at him as if still amused, he reached towards a cabinet in the sand wagon, inside were water skins. filled with water.

    Grabbing one, before shutting the cabinet he turned his attention back to the boy sprawled out on the ground.

    A chuckle escaped his lips as he chucked the waterskin onto the boy.

    Pain, followed by a thump.

    ‘Ow’ Kou was starting to tear up as he noticed what fell on his back was water.

    Greedily he started drinking, the rope burns which stung bothered him little as he was blinded by thirst. If he had been outside of the sand wagon and not inside of it he would have died on the second night. The heat of the desert is not something to be trifled with.

    The man staring at this started to laugh.

    Wiping tears from his eyes. “Ah i've never seen someone down a waterskin that quickly before, that's almost a talent in itself.”

    Chuckling his made his way towards the boy on the ground, receiving a death stare.

    “Feisty little thing aren't you,” he said, as he reached for something in his trouser pocket.

    Rummaging in his pocket for pulling out small object that seemed to glimmer in the light. Glancing at the boy again he put the object back into his pocket and made his way towards the other sand wagon to sleep.

    Minutes turned to hours, alone in the darkness, slowly his eyes adjusted to the darkness.

    The inside of the sand wagon, was littered with pieces of armor and the occasional shield. The armor looked like it had been used in combat before, some had long gashes in them. Occasionally the sounds of a group of Kyr would penetrate the walls of the wagon, as they struggled with the weight of the armor.

    The hard wooden floor was the only thing for a floor in the wagon, surely not made for comfort Kou thought as he tried to prop himself upwards into a sitting position.

    With much affort, he succeeded.

    The man that came before, he spoke an odd language.

    ‘I wonder what happened to Rufra..’

    Tears slowly formed in the corner of his eyes, the mind numbing darkness ate away at him for hours without interaction.

    On a shield a symbol could be lightly made out in the darkness.
    A dragon, eating a knight and his horse.

    ‘What a odd shield,’ Kou thought as he tried to bring his muddled thoughts to his rope burned wrists. His face slightly twitched with pain from the movement of the rope. His feet were also bound, however due to his trousers the ropes didn’t dig in as far as they did with his wrists.

    Every so often the wagon would bounce up and down through the sand dunes.

    Until they finally came to a halt.

    Night once again descended upon the land, swallowing light with a fever pitch gluttony. Darkness was the only sight for miles in every direction, a small light could be seen off in the distance.

    A group of men sat around a fire, warming their hands in it’s warmth.

    “Krist, that kid you brought is a boy,” the captain said as he reached into his trouser pocket to retrieve the small glimmering object.

    Krist looked in his direction before letting out a surprised “Huh?”.

    “Well, it shouldn't affect the price that much anyways, don't worry about it,” he said as he fiddled with the small object in his fingers, softly caressing the metal casing.

    “Well i'll be a fire monkey's uncle I wouldn't of guessed that one,” Josha said as he reached for a piece of salted blood ox that he was in the midst of cooking over the fire.

    The lovely aroma filled the air, making mouths water.

    “Dammit Josha do you have to cook your food right now?” Another of men said as he greedily eyed the piece of salted blood ox.

    “What? you guys ate yours yesterday, don’t start complaining to me about it,” he said as he slightly blew on the piece of meat, before taking a medium sized bite.

    His face shortly thereafter filled with bliss.

    One of the staple foods of the Wildfire Plains was the blood ox meat, it’s taste could compare with food that even the nobles would happily devour. They were so common in the Wildfire Plains that even commoners were allowed to have this luxury meat.

    As the aroma drifted in the night air, it entered a crack in a sand wagon, filled with darkness, the mind numbing darkness was shortly replaced by an insatiable hunger. It wasn't uncommon for slaves or captives to go hungry for days, as they were nothing more than ‘stock’ and wouldn’t be bothered with unless it was almost life threatening.

    The only reason the captain gave the young kid water at all was the fact that they were in the middle of a desert. Without water, you would die in mere days if not hours if you weren't protected by the inside of the sand wagon.

    The stinging of the rope, melted with the pain of hunger as a single thought rampaged through his head.

    ‘I'm so hungry.’

    At the mercy of someone else, we are nothing but helpless.

    So truly helpless.

  • Chapter 9: Journey. ( Part 2 )

    Wrists raw from the constant rubbing of the rope. Before the skin finally gave way as the crimson colored liquid slowly began to drip onto the rope.

    A day had passed since Kou had woken up in this world of darkness, though he was unable to tell. The only sanctuary he had in this darkness was a small crack in the corner of the sand wagon. It wouldn't let the light into the wagon but some of the sounds from outside could be heard. Every word they spoke would sound like gibberish, though being unable to understand them didn't matter. It was his only salvation from the pain and fear that slowly ate away at his very being.

    Every few days, the entrance to the wagon would be opened and his eyes would be quickly assaulted by the blinding light. With a thump a object had hit his body, another water skin. It had been 2 days since his last and 3 since the last time he ate any type of food.

    Slowly this world of darkness became a part of him. In this world filled with nothing, his mind was left to wander. Thoughts would often rouse themselves inside his head before being smoldered out by the sobs of loneliness.

    Days turned into weeks, in fact the group only had to spend another forty days until they could leave the confines of the desert. And head into the open expanse of the Wildfire Plains. As thoughts flickered in his mind as quickly as a flame licking the bottom of a roasted pig. He would often find himself remembering the stories he read in Rakhi’s house, and the ones he had been unable to finish.

    Over the weeks, he had begun to piece together the meaning of some of the words the outsiders used. Though he had a very vague understanding he could make out simple phrases.

    Slowly sparks of life could be seen in the once dying eyes, the darkness no longer scared him, instead it was comforting. His understanding of their language only got better until he was finally able to speak a bit of it himself.

    As the door swung open, light assaulted him once again but this time he called out.

    “Shut the door already,” he said as he held his hands over his eyes, a burning sensation shot through his head.

    The man who opened the door this time was none other than the captain, who was on his way to tease the child with some fresh lizard meat.

    “Well, i'll be freya’s uncle I wouldn't have thought that you would be able to speak our tongue in such a short time.”

    A slight smile appeared on his face, with a quick sudden movement the world of darkness once again descended inside the wagon.

    “Want a piece of meat? mr soon to be slave,” he said partly in jest, as the dark confines of the wagon returned to normal.

    Glancing upwards Kou could see the man clearly for the first time.

    Piercing back through the veil of darkness two fierce blue eyes.

    Worn out trousers, patch work could been seen on the upper left thigh, sloppy work. The cloth he wore as a shirt you could tell from a glance was originally a whitish color, it had be turned into a brownish color from the countless hours of sweating, and the unending sand.

    Strapped to his side, a long thin blade could be seen. Black and muddled hair could be seen as it hid one of his eyes, blue eyes that seemed to almost shine in the darkness.

    As if the words took a moment to register, Kou began to nod his head rapidly.

    “Well, that’s too bad,” he said as he opened the door with a sudden jerk of the handle. The iron hinges squeaked as he exited the wagon.

    “Pleas..” words left unfinished as his throat rebelled at the sheer thought of speaking, suddenly he clutched his head in pain. The soft whimpers could even be heard outside the wagon as the Kyr’s continued to struggle forth, towards the Wildfire Plains.

    “Captain, really enjoys to torment others,” Krist said as the great axe bound with green leather straps, seemed to increase in weight as the blistering heat of the desert continued to assault the group.

    Only in the midst of night did relief from it’s onslaught truly come. Only to be replaced by a bone chilling coldness.

    Although they had three sand wagons, they were mainly filled with their supplies for the journey into the desert, they had originally tried to come in the wagon Kou was currently occupying but it simply did not work as they intended.

    Much of which was a obtained at the last second. The Red Gorge Mercenaries were more accustomed to the plains, or the northern wilderness.

    They had simply gotten lucky that the purple eyes had gotten wiped out by a swarm. It would have cost him quite a bit of men in order to approach that village, though it was damaged when he saw it a portion of its wall still stood proudly as if to defy the deserts grasp.

    Seconds, minutes, hours, days.

    Time continued to flicker in the perpetual darkness, that would suddenly be engulfed by light. The gnaw biting feeling of never being full, thirsty. The passing of the sand between the metal skee’s as they mimicked the distinct sound of that a snake makes as it slithers in the sand.

    The slight murmur of the Kyr’s as they pulled the wagons.

    Then silence.

    The wagons had stopped moving completely, and a numbing silence slowly crept upon the land. The silence continued for a brief moment, suddenly the air grew thick, suddenly a voice could be heard. Screaming for help, the screams continued until silenced returned.

    From the safety of the wagon, Kou was unaware of what was occurring just outside the thin walls of the wagon.

    A man with defiant blue eyes, laid underneath a sand wagon as he hid, next to him a youth with brown hair in a ponytail. his black eyes showed an extreme fear.

    “Josha, I thought you said this route was safe,”  the man said as if it was a mere whisper.

    “You can’t blame me for this one how could I have known that would be lying in wait!” he said in protest, though one could argue that he hadn't even said anything at all.

    ****

    A gnaw biting hunger.

    Uncontrolable. Unsatisfiable. Ravenous.

    One mere mortal would not satisfy it, could not.

    A creature forgotten by time, thought to be nothing but a mere myth. However myths are more often times founded on something more physical than one could perceive.

    Two giant almond colored eyes, greedily eyed the remaining men. As it’s tail flickered back and forth in a excited motion.

    Talons digging into the sand, the stench of death wavered in the air.

    “Josha what the fuck is that thing,” the captain whispered as he turned to look at the young man next to him.

    The young man glanced back at him, eyes tinged with fear.

    “I-i don't know,” he said as he visibly shook in fear.

    The Red Gorge Mercenaries were often described as the ‘Best’, however knowing when you are able to win, and when death is upon you is another ordeal entirely.

    Two eyes, seemed to emit it’s lust for food with each swipe of it’s tail. Finally it’s patience had grown thin, one foot, slowly dug into the sand. Then it’s other foreleg came forward, the oddity moved towards the third sand wagon.

    The very same wagon that Kou was currently occupying. It seemed as the sand itself was struggling to keep its substance as the creature slowly moved towards the sand wagon, lips smeared in the lovely crimson liquid.

    “W-what is happening outside,” he said as he coughed from his dry throat, days without water, food.

    Luxuries he once took for granted now gone.

    As the creature moved towards the sand wagon, the other men sighed a breath of relief. Even if it meant living for another split second longer that’s all that mattered in front of that… thing.

    It’s crimson talons slowly rocked the sand wagon.

    Inside the wagon Kou was being suddenly tossed to the sides of the wagon unable to even grab onto anything and hope to outlast whatever is happening. A bemused look appeared on it’s face as it stared down at the sand wagon. Though these foolish mortals would not satisfy its growing hunger. They at least provided some sort of .. entertainment.

    Under the first sand wagon, krist and the few men who hid with him began to whisper among themselves.

    “What the hell is that thing! I've fought swarms with the Frontier battalion  near the Veneifer Mountains,” he whispered while a mixture of fear and confusion could be seen quite clearly on his face, eyes seemed to darken as if the end was near.

    Stuttering one last whisper, “B-but what is this?!”

    Fear was abundant on the faces of the Red Gorge Mercenaries who hid with the vice-captain, as he was the most experienced one in their so called little grouping the outlook he displayed, destroyed their image of the fearless slaughter of the battle field.

    A life is something you can only enjoy while you're alive.

    The creatures long tongue gently rubbed against it’s fangs. As if saving the taste. A sharp glance to the other sand wagons sent shivers down all of the men's spines. The two giant almond eyes seemed amused, before it proudly walked off into the distant sand.

    Relief spread like a wildfire among the men, a miracle had occurred to the small band of men.

    Meanwhile.

    Inside the wagon, Kou was tossed violently back and forth before violently slamming into a piece of a black steel armor chest plate. Instantly pain shot through his back.

    “AHH!” the noise sounded hoarse, as it became nothing more than a mere whimper, followed by sobs. Blood slowly dripped down his back as he laid sideways on the hard wooden floor, unable to move as tears filled his once joyous filled face.

    *****

    A gnaw biting itch.

    Uncontrolable. Unsatisfiable. Ravenous.

    One mere mortal would not satisfy it, could not.

    A creature forgotten by time, thought to be no more than a mere myth.

    Kyr the scholar of Valros, Marquis, Inventor of the ages was currently..

    Playing with a cat.

    Not just any ordinary cat, this cat was a special kind.

    It might seem like a normal feline to the unsuspecting passerby, but not to the trained eyes of Kyr, as she glanced at the little devil.

    It replied with a cute “Meow!” as it used it’s paw to point to a tree.

    Like her previous conjunctions this feline wasn't ordinary.

    Surely it wasn't a normal.. cat.

    As she glanced to the tree, the slight chattering of two goldspark sparrows danced softly in the air as they murmured amongst themselves in their nest.

    A light clicked above her head as she turned to the cat.

    A slight glint of cruelty appeared in both their eyes, as if they both understood each others intentions.

    As the pair of Goldspark sparrows continued to chatter inside their nest.

    The lurking predator of the ages past was slowly crossing between bushes as the unsuspecting pair continued to chatter among themselves.

    The ever watchful Kyr was also crouching as she felt the cold cobblestones underneath her bare feet, passersby who saw her behavior stared for a moment before continuing on their way.

    Crazy people were not uncommon, just slightly less seen in broad daylight.

    Soon the predator of the ages approached the backside of the tree, soft paws made no sounds as he stealthily sneaked up the tree.

    Prey in sight, he stared before licking his lips in anticipation.

    Kyr on the other hand was now laying down on the grass near the walkway, playing with a flower as she watched the ongoing show.

    Suddenly as the predator of the ages released his murderous intent, the male goldspark sparrow turned around in horror, only to be greeted by the claws of death.

    Fear tinged it’s eyes as the last fluttering image was of it’s mate.

    Goldspark sparrows are unlike other variations of the so called ‘monster’ sparrow species. They only have a single mate in their entire lives.

    Although this causes their overall number to not be as great as their other relatives.

    The look of dread appeared on the once happy female goldspark sparrow, as the shock of settled, it was simply too late.

    The claws of death would claim yet another life.

    “Meow.”

  • edited July 2015
    Chapter 10: Hammerfall Forest.

    Time itself chooses how to pass, fast, slow or simply not at all.

    ****

    The faint morning twilight twinkled in the sky as it seemed to gleam with a radiance unseen before. Piercing through the forest foliage, the veil of darkness quickly fled into the deepest part of the forest. The soft rustling of leaves on the ground could be heard as a soft breeze brought with it the smell of autumn.

    Clunk. Clunk. Clunk.

    Resounded throughout the forest with almost an eerie echo. Wet mud littered the pathway as the once pristine white oak wheels passed through the filth and muck.

    Gleaming blue eyes pierced through the fog as they looked at their surroundings with a clear look of disgust.

    Wagons pulled by kyr could be seen faintly as the fog released them from it’s lustful grasp.

    “I never want to go through a fog like that again,” Josha said as he seemed to spit the words out in disgust, wearing white fur clothing with thin strips of black steel covering vitals as they shined in the faint light.

    Clearly made for freedom of movement and protecting vitals, often a favorite of rogues and scouts.

    Another man spoke up.

    “That accursed fog haunted us for nearly a week! an entire week!” he said while as he rummaged through his rucksack, pulling out a glass bottle filled with a red liquid. With a single bite he pulled the cork out and spit it off into the distance.

    One swig, two swigs, a shade of red appeared on the man’s cheeks as his face began to relax.

    The morning light finally broke through the foliage, awakening the creatures within. Life began to move and sounds reverberated through the forest.

    Still one dominate sound echoed throughout the forest.

    Clunk. Clunk. Clunk.

    Three wagons could be seen as they traveled through the forest floor filled with mud and muck.

    The third wagon had a long claw mark on it as if some type of monster had attacked it, the iron bark seemed to almost bend from sheer pressure.

    Two men could be seen resting on top of the leading wagon as it traveled through the muddy filth. The man on the left wore fur skinned trousers and a puffy jacket made from white wolf fur.

    As he breathed in and out the white mist of his breath could be seen. The man on the right however wore a worn out pair of commoner trousers and a light vest, as if the cold did not affect him.

    With a exalted breath the one on the right began to speak.

    “Krist, we will head to the Wildfire Auction House, then head to the Aseriul Trading Company Headquarters,” He said mid yawn as his blue eyes seemed to pierce through the foliage and into the heavens with but a glance.

    The man on the left nodded in agreement as he itched the back of his head.

    “Sounds like a good plan, we need to restock our supplies anyway.” Pausing for a slight moment he glanced towards the third wagon, “And we still have our little guest to get rid of.”

    The man on the right let out an amused chuckle.

    In the embrace of shadows, a small silhouette could be seen as the shadows seemed to dance around it. Gleaming purple eyes pierced the darkness tinged with a look of defiance.

    Each breath, meaningful, purposeful.

    In these past two months he had grown accustomed to the pains of hunger and thirst as well as the injury on his back slowly sapping away his strength.

    The movement of the wagons suddenly came to a halt. The second wagon had gotten stuck in the mud.

    A wide variety of cursing could be heard through the walls of the wagon.

    “Damnit Volk how did you manage to get it stuck?” Krist called out with anger apparent on his face.

    The passage through the forest would normally take 2-3 days at most however with the accursed fog their traveling time slowed to a mere crawl of what it would have been.

    “It isn’t my fault this forest is cursed,” Volk said as he continued to drink his bottle of wine.

    Annoyed Krist snapped back. “The forest isn’t cursed it's your cursed luck Volk!”

    “Krist, don’t let it get to you we will make camp here for the night.” a mellow voice called out seeming not to care about the situation at hand.

    With but a glance krist turned and replied. “Yes, captain.”

    “Volk, you’re on firewood duty!” Krist snapped.

    “Eh?” Volk said as he took another swig of his bottle before jumping down into the mud, the leather boots seemed to scream in agony as he dragged them the muck, heading off into the greenery of the forest.

    “Josha, go scout our surroundings,” The mellow voice called out again as he brushed his fingertips lightly over the small metal object.

    ...

    Two days, they were two days away from the wildfire plains, but delays like this had been plaguing the caravan nonstop.

    “Rosh light the fire already, i’m cold.” Josha said as he blew his breath on his hands.

    The man called rosh stood up with a yawn as he stretched.

    Walking towards the firewood he reached out with a hand and began to chant. Red mist slowly formed around his wrist as the words left his mouth.

    [ SPARK ]

    A crimson red spark flew into the wood pile and instantly ignited it. The flame danced wildly as the red mist around his wrist slowly dissipated into thin air, rosh glanced at josha and said, “Happy now?”.

    “Very.” Josha replied with a smirk as he held his hands near the new heat source.

    The sounds of the forest lingered in the air as it came into contact with the wagon.

    ‘I wonder what type of creatures those are.’ Kou thought as a small smile appeared on his face.

    The sounds continued until nightfall when the forest became eerily silent.

    ‘It’s so cold,’ Kou thought as he shivered next to him was a dented shield that he used to prop himself up with as he began to breathe heavily his eyes started to lose focus and he drifted off to sleep.

    The slight mist from his breathing could be faintly seen in the darkness. As the laughter from outside the wagon continued to echo out into the forest.

    The men would often take shifts as to not be caught by a surprise attack, goblins though rare in this forest do exist. And they aren't ones to travel alone.

    ...

    As the night relished in the nightmares and agony, the sun slowly rose into the sky, as the faint light illuminated the camp.

    In the cold frigid morning 5 men could be seen huddling around a fire.

    “Brrr, it sure is cold.” One said as he rubbed his hands together back and forth.

    “Y-yeah, but we will be out of this forest by tomorrow and in the plains.” Another said as his teeth began to chatter.

    “A-at least there's a town near this forest, for once we can sleep in a warm bed.”

    All the men shook their head in agreement, the town of Lue was located almost 5 miles outside of the Hammerfall forest. Named after the once legendary hero of Aseriul who fell to his demise in the forest.

  • Chapter 11: The town of Lue.

    "God dammit Josha I told you to feed the fucking kid but no you ate his food instead."

    Josha just sat there looking embarrassed.

    "I even had to waste a potion on him! a potion!" The captain said as he punched the ironbark oak seat, forming a small dent.

    After a moment of gathering his thoughts he let out a final murmur just loud enough for Josha to hear. "If you weren't the best scout I've ever seen I would have gutted you for making me waste a potion."

    Cold sweat suddenly appeared at Josha's back.

    ****

    Earlier that morning Krist under orders of the captain went to go torment the kid.

    As the door opened, light flooded the small wagon.

    "Well, well sleeping beauty time to wake up." Krist said with a grin.

    Walking over towards the shield Kou had propped himself up with a look of concern appeared over krist's face.

    "Fuck they don't give coin for dead ones." He said as he made his way out towards the captain, leaving the door of the wagon wide open.

    As he approached the captain he called out, "Captain, that kid is going to be dead here soon."

    As he heard this he turned towards Krist with a wondering expression as a single word left his lips "How?".

    As the word left his mouth a bloodlust that makes one goes weak in the knees suddenly suppressed the rest of them.

    Krist, barely able to stand just shook his head as he didn't know. The Captain glanced around the men each receiving the full blown assault of his bloodlust. It was just about to land on Volk when he called out "Captain, I bet it was that Josha brat. Lately he's had way more food than he normally should."

    Josha gave Volk a death glare before returning to his harmless self.

    Sighing rather loudly the captain stood up and made his way to the third wagon. Seeing the Captain leave, relief appeared on the other men's faces.

    As he approached the wagon he made a motion to Krist. "Did you really need to leave the door wide open? what if the brat was faking it." Krist in turn stared at the captain and said "If the brat could fake it that well, then I'll pay the coin he would of got us."

    A slight smile appeared on the captain's lips as he walked into the wagon. Seeing the kid still propped up against the shield he made his way over before calling out. "Hey sleeping beauty wake up."

    After a few minutes of calling the brat, Captain inwardly cursed as he pulled out the small metal casing he normally caresses back and forth.

    Sighing loudly he snapped the metal casing in his hand, leaning over towards the unresponsive brat as he forced his mouth open.

    A white liquid started to emerge from the metal casing, this was known as a healing potion. As the liquid began to drip he squeezed it even harder as he held it over the boys mouth.

    With another loud sigh he glanced back at Krist, "He will wake up in a few hours when he does make sure he actually is fed this time." He said with a scowl.

    Krist just replied "Yes Captain."

    ****

    “Ugh” As my eyes opened I was once again immersed in the world of darkness that had been my companion for I don't know how long.

    The hardwood floor that i’ve grown accustomed to over time had been replaced by a soft type of fur.

    Lost in the pleasant sensation I noticed the pain in  back had subsided, in fact it doesn’t hurt at all. And the rope around my ankles has been removed as well.

    Sounds of people chatting and going about their day could be heard through the gap in the top of the wagon it seems we’ve finally arrived at the town of Lue.

    Suddenly the door was flung open in the doorway stood a man simply known as the ‘Captain’ by the rest of their merry band of misfits.

    “Oh would you look at that sleeping beauty has finally woke up.” He said with a clear look of disgust over his face.

    Gripping the hilt of his black his knuckles on his left hand seemed to lose their lustre as they turned white, “You know sleepy you’ve cost me quite a bit of coin and I honestly won’t feel happy unless I work it out of you myself instead of selling you to some piss pot of a noble.”

    Glancing towards the armor in the wagon he let out a small chuckle, pulling out the short dagger on his left hip the wooden handle seemed quite ordinary and very lacklustre with a pace that was neither quick nor slow he made his way towards Kou.

    With but a flick of his wrist the rope binding Kou’s wrists had been cut for the first time in months he had control over his body. Looking up towards the man with a confused look.

    A slight chuckle escaped the man’s mouth as he motioned to the boy, “From today onwards you will be the Red Gorge Mercenaries Groups Battle Slave.” Putting the dagger into its sheathe the man reached into his breast pocket and removed a rag and threw it towards Kou. As he walked towards the area the water skins were kept the wooden floor creaked with each step, reaching inside he grabbed a full skin and chucked it to towards Kou.

    Catching it barely Kou still had a confused look on his face as the man motioned to him once again, “Now be a good slave and start cleaning all the armor in this wagon, until I can see my reflection in every single one you won’t be fed.”

    “Oh and you’ve already been branded before hand so you won’t be able to run away.”

    Leaving as suddenly as he came the room however was not sealed in darkness this time the door stayed wide open, looking towards his wrists Kou noticed a strange symbol that glowed eerily in the light.

    The symbol was the slave mark, a combination of magic and iron workmanship by the dwarfs they themselves used it against law breakers of their race and used them as a manual labor in the great black steel ore mine in the Northern Wilderness.

    It gave the slave no way to escape as the one who branded the slave would always know his location, unless the slave kills the one who branded him he will forever be a slave.

    This act of branding was illegal in the Holy Kingdom of Valros, but in the Aseriul Empire it was as rampant as could be.

    All while the only sensation in Kou’s head was, ‘Light.’

    Slowly and begrudgingly Kou began to use the water to clean the armor of the band, each piece was thoroughly covered in sand. Minutes trickled into hours as he continued to slowly clean each piece.

     Some had dents, and scars of battle in a land unknown to him, some seemed completely unused before but the object that stood out the most to him was a shield with a dragon eating the knight and his faithful steed. He had sat against this shield for many months and often would think what an unlucky symbol to choose for a shield.

    The village of the Kuh often did not use shields, most of the warriors had a basic understanding of the Realm Energy and were able to use their respective affinity to block most attacks, though the wind element was the most feeble but along with the fire element had the highest damage output.

    Kou seemed to drift off into a dream like state as the world around him continued to slow down, particles in the air became visible to the naked eye as his own eyes began to shine in a bright purple lustre this lasted for a minute before it had finally stopped. This wasn’t the first time it had happened to Kou but this had been the longest it lasted for.

    “Phew.” Kou let out a satisfactory sigh as he sat down on the dirt soaking in the sunlight.

    Glancing about he noticed how vibrant the town was, Lue though a small town near the hammerfall forest was way larger than the village of the Kuh in fact Kou had never seen so many people. Even different sizes of people could be seen some very round ones that he never saw in the desert.

    As he watched the passerby’s continued down the road he noticed that the wagons were near the loading area of an Inn, the rest of the band had entered in hours ago to enjoy the comforts of civilization.

    The distinct sounds of a hammer beating against metal brought tears to the corner of Kou’s eyes as he thought ‘I wonder how old man Ruku’s doing.’

    *****

    Sometimes not knowing the truth can help one to endure what they normally would be unable to do.


    *AN: This chapter was officially cursed... every time I sat down to finish it off something would happen or go wrong or id get a call in to go cover someone.. T...T sorry it took so long lol.

  • Chapter 11, oh how long I've waited for you. :D

    Thank you for the chapter. Can you describe the slave seal more though? What it looks like? And more importantly does it do anything other than tell their location? If someone was super strong, doesn't that mean that they can just kill their master and walk away when they are branded? Not that that method works for Kou at the moment, but it was just a thought.
  • andrewl11 said:

    Chapter 11, oh how long I've waited for you. :D


    Thank you for the chapter. Can you describe the slave seal more though? What it looks like? And more importantly does it do anything other than tell their location? If someone was super strong, doesn't that mean that they can just kill their master and walk away when they are branded? Not that that method works for Kou at the moment, but it was just a thought.
    :P

    I'll try to be more descriptive on the slave seal in the next chapter, also I was debating on the process of how to break the seal. Killing the one who marked you is what I decided on using however I might change it later, but I think it works considering Versa'al is a land where the strong control the weak, though I guess you could put a seal on a stronger individual as long as you had per say their family or something else held hostage.
  • When will we see another chapter being posted?
  • It's a good read and I realy enjoy it. Thats why im asking.
  • edited August 2015
    It's a good read and I realy enjoy it. Thats why im asking.
    Well, you're in luck. :p

    Chapter 12: Errand Boy.

    Amidst the morning dew a pillar of smoke could be seen as it exited through the stone brick chimney of the blacksmith’s workshop. Sounds of hammers beating against metal continued to ring out on the morning air as if to indicate the coming of a new day.

    Staring at the pillar of smoke Kou’s eyes slowly looked towards the open portion of the workshop, watching a extremely short man continue to raise his hammer against the fiery metal. Each swing of the hammer showed a lifetime of knowledge and techniques polished over the decades as the sparks faded into the morning air.

    As he looked at the short man hammer away at the fiery metal soon the hammering turned into a rhythm as the metal took the shape of a short sword's blade. As he watched he didn’t stop his hands and continued to clean the remaining armor.

    Apparently the most common type of metal in Versa’al was black iron ore and black steel ore both could be found in the Shallowsky Mountains in the Northern Wilderness. The ore had a special property that allowed realm energy to pass through it without damaging the blade. Other metals like common iron and bronze would explode if you tried to fuse realm energy pass through.

    As he sat on the ground and watched the man swing his hammer he thought of a book he once read at the cellar in Rakhi’s house. It was called ‘God’s of Metal the Dwarfs.’ Though the title was boasting of an entire race it was a well deserved boast as no one in the entire continent of Versa’al could be their match in the art of forging. Though the elves in the forest of the ancients could simply chant a spell and have nature grow their weapons for them, it was hardly comparable to the master craftsmanship of the dwarves.

    As his gaze wandered from the workshop towards the street he noticed a group of youth’s playing with a round object.

    With a dejected sigh escaping his lips he thought,

    ‘That looks like fun.’

    As he was gazing at the youth’s a shadow appeared behind him, as his blue cold calculating eyes looked at the direction the boy was staring at.

    “Sleepy, put the gear back in the wagon and come and eat.”

    Startled by the sudden noise Kou jumped in fright as he turned around to see the amused face of the Captain.

    As the captain walked back towards the fire pit near the wagons he watched as the boy carefully lifted every piece of armor before placing it into the storage wagon, before he silently trotted over to the fire pit and sat on the ground.

    As his gaze looked over the men at the fire pit the Captain barked out,

    “Josha give sleepy your share.”

    “But Captain.” Josha said as he looked towards his plate with fresh blood ox meat and covered in moonlight mushroom gravy.

    His blue eyes flickered with a ruthless glint as he said,

    “Now.”

    Josha begrudgingly turned towards Kou with eyes tinged with extreme hatred as he handed over his breakfast.

    Kou’s lips smacked greedily as he stared at the plate in his hands. Often his only meal would be stale bread and a watered down soup, but today he would be having something even most nobles would drool over. As he bit into the meat only one word could describe the feeling in his heart ‘Blissful’.

    The fire continued to flicker as sparks continued to float on the morning breeze before fading from sight. Though it was early morning the temperature near the Hammerfall Forest was still relatively cold compared to the Wildfire Plains where the temperature would often be warm or extremely hot. Situated on a withered old chair, the captain was looking over a leather map, instead of using ink and paper maps where carved into the leather itself making it completely waterproof. These leather maps were extremely useful for adventurers and travelers alike.

    Pausing for a moment from reading his map his gaze fell on Kou as his lips parted, “Sleepy go feed the Kyr’s.”

    Reluctantly Kou put his plate back onto the ground lifted himself off the ground. As he stood up a spitting sound could be heard as Volk ripped out the cork of yet another of his .. beverages and spit it into the fire pit.

    “Ah my sweet sweet wine how i've missed you.” Volk said with tears forming near the corner of his eyes as he quickly took a swig of the bottle.

    Slightly distracted from Volks.. display of affection. The captain’s voice rang out again this time with a commanding tone, “Did you not hear me go feed the Kyrs.”

    Suddenly the symbol on his wrists began to brighten as pain started to course through his body, quickly Kou made a b line for the Kyr’s as he started to feed them the pain would lessen with each passing breath before Kou could finally breath a sigh of relief.

    Each slave branding had it’s own mark so slaves could be identified as to who their owner was. The mark the Red Gorge Mercenaries used was that of a knight and his horse being eaten by a dragon.

    As Kou feed the Kyr their beautiful emerald scales seemed to glimmer as the leftover morning dew stuck to their bodies. He had one he liked the most which he secretly named Flatfoot. Flatfoot was the most intelligent one out of the Group and would often want Kou to pet underneath his chin as his tongue would flicker out with a pleased look on his emerald face.

    “Heh, Flatfoot stop tickling me with your tongue will you?” Kou said as he tried to look menacing before his face broke into a smile as he petted the giant lizard.

    As Kou played with the Kyr’s Josha continued to sit at the fire pit with his eyes fixated on Kou. ‘That god damn brat, just you wait until I get you alone.’

    Krist off the side was petting his.. great axe as he noticed Josha’s gaze.

    “Josha don’t try it, if you make the captain mad again this time he will really gut you.”

    An impatient voice called out,

    “Sleepy come here.”

    Kou turned his head before looking back at Flatfoot and quickly saying “I’ll play with you later Flatfoot.” Before he quickly made his way to the chair the captain was sitting in.

    “After we enter the plains we will start your training.” Reaching into his pocket he handed a list to Kou before asking. “Can you read the items on the list?”

    Kou shook his small head and said “I can’t read it.”

    Sighing the captain began to read the words out.

    “Thirty pounds of blood ox meat, 10 blade sharpening stones, one black iron shortsword, and a case of bandages.”

    “Go get these items before nightfall.” Reaching into his pants pocket his hand held a small bag filled with coins.

    “This should be enough to buy everything on the list. You do know how much money is worth right?” He said as he gazed over Kou.

    Letting his voice escape from his throat kou muttered. “100 copper pieces is equivalent to 1 silver and 100 silver pieces is the equivalent to 1 gold coin?”

    “Good now go.”

    Carefully placing the bag into his pocket Kou quickly made his way towards the main street of the village, glancing towards his first destination the blacksmith’s workshop.

    As he darted across the street he got a few odd stares considering how unnatural his purple eyes are. As he approached the workshop the woodmen ship of the building could be seen as a hammer inlay pattern could be seen carefully carved over the shop portion of the workshop. Next to the hammer was a metal object that had a bluish hue to it as it radiated out onto the street. As his fingers came into contact with the wooden handle he slowly opened the door.

    As the door opened the smell of metal, grease and sweat permeated throughout the shop. Sitting at the counter was a old man who seemed uninterested as he came in.

    Walking towards the counter he could see many types of armor and weapons hanging on the walls. Gazing upwards to the old man he finally gathered up the courage to ask “Excuse me mister.”

    The old man slowly opened his eyes as he gazed at the boy in front of him. Before opening his mouth as his ancient voice called out, “On a errand boy?”

    Looking upwards Kou nodded his head as he said, “Do you happen to have um, 10 sharpening stones, and one black iron shortsword?”

    Looking at the boy again his gaze stumbled upon his marked wrists before his attitude did a 160, “Ah you're the slave of those bastards, I have the items you want hmm.” Thinking for a moment the man put his fingers on his head and began to rub his temples.

    “Ah fuck it, 20 silver for the sharpening stones and 50 silver for the black iron short sword.”

    Kou carefully reached into the leather bag and pulled out a single gold coin and asked, “Would it be possible to get change for this?” he said as the gold coin danced lightly in his fingertips.

    The old man sighed before grabbing the cold coin out of Kou’s hand and tossed 30 silver pieces back into his hand. As his old voice rang out again “One moment I’ll go grab your order.”

    As the back door behind the counter squeaked shut. Patiently waiting for the old man Kou glanced at the equipment in the shop before the front door suddenly swung open.

    “Old man Mikael where are you at?” The voice bellowed as the cumbersome man walked into the shop before his gaze fell upon the boy with purple eyes.

    Kou though frightened by the sudden noise replied to the man “H-he just went to the back to get my order.”

    Looking at the boy the man’s eyes sparked with interest though when his eyes laid upon the symbol on the boys wrists he inwardly cursed. ‘Why the hell is a Red Gorge Mercenary Group in this small town?’ As he continued to curse the door to the back squeaked as the old man emerged from the room.

    Placing the objects on the counter he looked towards Kou and repeated the following, “10 sharpening stones, and a single black iron short sword, correct?”

    Kou simply nodded his head as he grabbed the objects off the counter before saying goodbye, as he left the workshop the two men inside both sighed in relief.

    Though he might be a slave, even a slave belonging to that fearsome group is not something most common people would even dare to disrespect.

    As he walked back towards the wagons to drop off the stuff he got to the storage wagon he stepped on a sharp stone that laid hiding amidst the dirt road.

    Tears formed near the corner of his eyes as he yelped from the pain.

    After unloading the items into the storage wagon, Kou proceeded onto the next two items, 30 pounds of blood ox meat and a case of bandages.

    Walking further down the street people could be seen entering a shop with a pig type animal as it’s symbol, the windows of the shop were lined with freshly cut meat. Walking into the building the strong stench of blood lingered in the air as he made his way towards the counter.

    The middle aged man looked down at the boy before asking “What are you here for lad.” Kou replied “30 pounds of blood ox meat, please.”

    Startled for a moment he looked at the boy and said “Lad you know carrying that much with your size will be quite the achievement, you sure?”

    Kou meekly nodded his head.

    “Well, that will be 1 gold coin.” Kou pulled out the leather pouch again and retrieving the necessary gold coin as he handed it to the man.

    “Well give me a second to wrap the meat, you can sit down while you wait.” The man said as he motioned towards a pair of wooden chairs sitting near the entrance.

    Kou quickly sat on the wooden chair breathing a sigh relief. Seeing so many people made him almost dizzy. Though the village of the Kuh had a population of around five thousand the town of Lue has a population of thirty thousand pulsing through it’s streets, not including the adventurers and travelers who pass through the town.

    Soon the man came back to the counter with a very tall bag. “Here’s the meat boy, I added a little leather handhold so you could carry it easier.” He said with a smile.

    “Thank you!” Kou in turn said while showing the man his brilliant smile, Gritting his teeth Kou grabbed the bag by the handle and lifted it onto  his back.

    It felt as if all the blood in his body had quickly rushed towards his head as he struggled out of the shop, each step caused sweat to appear on his brow as he begrudgingly made his way back towards the wagon. As he sat the bag down in the storage wagon his legs gave out as he tried to catch his breath. Twenty minutes had passed before his breath had returned one last task a case of bandages remained and the time until night was close appropriating.

    As he hazily made his way back into the cluttered streets of the town it took him nearly an hour until he found a shop that resembled Refreai’s Potion Shop quickly he walked in through the door. The lady behind the table in the far end of the room let out her sweet voice as she said “How can I help you dear?”

    “I need a case of bandages please.” Kou said politely.

    “Mm, that'll be 30 Silver.” Reaching into his pocket Kou retrieved the last of the contents of the leather pouch numbering 30 silver pieces exactly.

    He handed it to the miss as she smiled before walking towards the right corner of the room and retrieving a small box no bigger than 4 feet tall and 3 feet wide. “Here you are dear.” She said as she handed the box to Kou.

    Happy to finally be finish with his task he thanked her and carried the box back towards the storage wagon.

    After he arrived he quickly dropped off the box and made his way towards his new bed in the wagon made out of a soft fur he quickly entered the world of dreams.

    *AN: Also I normally post on my blog first before posting on here. So feel free to check it out just incase I forget to post it on here.*

  • Thanks for the chapter! :D
  • so for the slave to be freed does he need to kill his master or does his master just need to die? cause the first option seems like a desighn flaw.
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