They took us to Cassis. It was odd, and yet highly ironic, how the beginning of all the calamity that had befallen me in my life should be where I found myself in the end. I hated this city. I had come here as a boy, marveling, but as a man I cursed it with my eyes. Gradually the opulence of the city encroached around us as we entered deeper into it. Buildings reached for the sky boldly, trying to make up for the flatness of the plain on which they were built, even as garishly colored silks flapped in the breeze coming from the sea. They took us to the citadel located in the middle of the city. The citadel was built more for the appearance of force rather than any strategic initiative. It was in no position to defend the city should it be attacked. But then, the Zoarinians were confident that was an option beyond the realm of possibilities, as who could face their superior numbers on the field of battle and win? The streets were thronged with the denizens of the city, who were just
We sailed through the night and most of the next day before we reached the far end of the lake, which bordered the Silepsium Moors. I had never seen a more foreboding stretch of land as was laid out before me now. Not even the Hagathic Wastelands could compare with the somber mood of these moors. I kept my reservations about the gloomy moors to myself though. No need to infect the boy with my uneasiness. I pulled the boat up onto the shore and after a brief meal of fish we started out into the moors. The boy stuck close enough that he could have been my shadow. He was still as silent as he had been since we’d left Kharta. That night we had another fire and ate some more fish along with a few wild vegetables that I had managed to scavenge on the way. Things were going well for us until the next day. As we were traveling along through the scrub brush of the moors a sense of foreboding came over me. We were being watched! I glanced at the boy behind me and I could see that he sensed s
I got up to leave, but his failing voice caught me before I started down the corridor. “One more thing, leave me a knife if you would be so kind.” I glanced questioningly at him. “I assure you, Sir, that I’m not the suicidal type, except for perhaps staying in the game longer than I should have. If I am to die here in this place, there is someone that I very much want to take along with me,” he said, with a raspy chuckle that abruptly caused him to gasp with pain. Wordlessly, I pulled a small sharp dagger out from my left boot and handed it to him through the bars. “Thank you again, Sir! Tell me by what name are you called?” “I’m Killian,” I replied simply. “Ahh, I knew it! There was something about you that reminded me of my old friend. I’m glad to know that your grandfather found you at long last! I am at peace now, as assured as I can possibly be of my son’s safety while in your care! Your father was one of the greatest warriors the Raena people have ever had. All you Ta’lon
The fighting school of Ramnotan was located on the outskirts of Carsea. Roughly, we were yanked out of the wagon by the guards. I’d hit the ground face first, after having been shoved by a guard off the wagon. I’d tried to get up, spitting the dust from my mouth as I did so, but I was knocked down flat again by another guard. I’d tried to get up again, but several hard kicks had slammed into my side and I’d curled up into a ball in the dust. It had been hard to breathe and I’d had to repeatedly gasp to get back my breath. I’d looked up into the face of my tormenter then before trying to get up again. He’d stood with his feet shoulder width apart and appeared to have no weapon upon him. He smiled down at me. His face had looked like worn cracked leather and the smile that was splayed across it did not reach his eyes. “I’ll show you the meaning of what it is to be a slave, boy! I think I’ll start your education with your pretty face!”He had reached down with one hand and grabbed my h
KillianThe sun was hot and I felt a drop of sweat make its way down through the grime; days of built up dust that I hadn’t so much as had a chance to wash off yet. I was doing well to still be alive, but I hated that I reeked of the smell of stale sweat. Still, it was better to be alive than a rotting corpse left out for the vultures to dine on in a lonely gully somewhere. I didn’t have any spare water to wash with anyway, now that I did have some time to think about how bad I smelled. Water, at the moment, was the most pressing problem with which I was faced. The Hagathic Wastelands were just that, a wasteland without drinkable water. It was a good place to either lose a posse of enemy riders or die of thirst. Take your pick, but I didn’t want any part of either option. To the east, about fifty miles away, was the edge of the Attorgron forests. I could get good water there, and it was closer than the other source of water I was heading for, but it came with its own problems. For
In the distant past there was a tribe of people on Earth called the Raena. They were warriors, a people of the sword, and they lived by honor and the integrity of their belief in the Torcima of all life.The world was changing all around them as it drifted more and more from the old ways of the beginning of time.Their enemies hated them for their stubborn determination not to change and go along with the wicked tide of man’s fall from grace with their Torcima.The Raena prepared in secret to do the only thing left for them to do; leave Earth, the first world. Sensing that a judgment was coming, they prepared a way to escape the catastrophe that they felt had become inevitable, given the conditions of the fallen peoples of Earth. With their preparations complete, they left the place of their creation two hundred years before the global flood sent by the Torcima. A flood that would destroy the earth save for one man’s family, who was found to yet be righteous and of pure blood lineage.