Lord Tharn Zon
Lord Tharn Zon
Author: krushandkill
Chapter 1 - Escape

Amsterdam, year 2020.

The police officer at the desk raised his eyes from his computer keyboard and glanced at the young man before him. He had handcuffs on his wrists, and two other officers were at his side, watching over him.

The room was filled with other desks, with police officers working at their computers or reading some files.

Seated on some benches against a wall, there were four men handcuffed to each bench, waiting for a police officer to take them to a desk to be interrogated.

The officer looked at the screen and asked, with a grin, “Lord Tharn Zon. Is that your real name? Where is your Kingdom, your lordship?”

The young man sighed and answered, “My Kingdom is long gone. It disappeared when my World died. And if you don’t release me so that I can complete my mission, your World will suffer the same fate.”

The officer grabbed the leather tube with a string attached that was over the desk and asked with the same grin, “By mission, you mean using the sword inside this to kill that guy that was fighting you in that alley? He was defending himself with his cane, according to those two officers that brought you both. They stopped you right before you sliced that poor man’s head.”

Where is that bastard? You let him go?”

No, we want to take his testimony as well, and find out who we have to arrest.”

The young man jolted. “He is here? Is he also restrained, at least? Is someone guarding him? “

Guarding him? For what? He is in a cell until he wakes up. Like you were before coming here.”

You fools! He will escape and kill everyone!”

The officers laughed when they saw him so worried, and then they all shivered because the temperature in the building suddenly dropped. The young man broke the handcuffs with a powerful pull, grabbed the leather tube that had his sword, and pushed the police officers out of his way as he rushed to where the cold air was coming from.

He kept on shouting for everyone to stand aside as he easily pushed them away as if they were mere nuisances. “Move, or he will escape! He opened a Portal! “

He exited that room and arrived at the main corridor. Following the icy breeze, he ran down the stairs with the two officers that brought him right on his tail.

With a powerful kick, he took down the security door that led to the corridor with the holding cells and saw the hated man waving at him, with his hat covering his head, his long beard, and dark sunglasses. Behind the man was a magical whirlwind, rotating and twirling. While the young man was running to the still closed cell, the bearded man entered the portal, and it started to fade.

The two officers gulped at that unbelievable sight, and they pointed their guns at the young man, and one of them shouted, “Freeze! Or we will shoot you!”

The young man turned back and lowered the left side of his shirt to show the gunshot wound he got on his shoulder when he was arrested.

Not even a scratch was there, and he said, “You already tried that, remember? You only caught me because I had already lost a lot of blood from fighting that abomination. Go back to your simple lives and don’t try to meddle with things you don’t understand.”

He then took the sword from the leather sheath, and with a single swing, he cut the cell bars as if they were made of butter.

The two officers lowered their weapons, astonished to see the impossible.

They approached the cell in which the young man entered and saw him speaking to his weapon. “System Sword, open a portal to where he went.”

The officers couldn’t hear the Sword, as it said, “Analysing… Stand by… Portal Spell Detected... Tracking… Activating Portal Spell!”

Before the dumbfounded police officers, a strange circular light blue whirlwind appeared on the back wall of the cell. From there came a sudden chilly wind that made them shiver.

Without hesitating, the young man jumped into it, and the Portal disappeared when he crossed.

One officer gulped and said, “We should probably forget what happened because no one will believe us. I don’t know about you, but I don’t like the idea of ending up in a mental hospital!”

Yeah… Let’s go up and shred the paperwork. And quick, before that dumbass puts everything in the system.”

They ran upstairs to make sure their overzealous colleague didn’t put on the police station system the events that led them to that alley when they got an anonymous call from someone who saw two men fighting with swords.

As for Lord Tharn Zon, he was once again floating in the dark void that connects Portals through Worlds.

He had lost count of how many Worlds he had travelled to, but for that, he knew who to ask. Or better yet, what.

System Sword, any prediction about the time we are going to be stuck here until the Portal connects to our next destination?”

None, Master. This voyage is not possible to analyse. It could be minutes, or it could be hours. It is also impossible to predict how much time will pass between the arrival of the Hooded Mage, and ours.”

Lord Tharn sighed. “How many Worlds he destroyed so far, and how many have we saved?”

Counting with the one we left, five were saved, ten destroyed. It was fortunate that this time we arrived weeks after the Hooded Mage. According to past records, he seems to need five years to absorb the Magic of a World.”

That’s not a good average… And we don’t know how many he destroyed before he arrived at mine… This wait between Worlds is what annoys me.”

Coincidently, the Sword alerted him, “World detected. Portal connected. Get ready, Master.”

So soon? Now that is a first!”

A new Magical Portal appeared on his right, and he walked through it.

As he exited the Portal, he blinked because of the light that surrounded him. A quick look around was enough to make him frown. A rocky floor all around, with small hills nearby and mountains on the horizon. Not a single plant or animal in sight, only desolated and rocky scenery as far as he could see.

He heard the System Sword making the usual announcement, “Accessing World Magic… Standby… Accessing Language… Master, this World has no Magic, and I can’t detect any sign of life.”

Before Tharn could ask anything, the sound of something brushing against rock called his attention.

One hill was moving. Better yet, it was rising from the ground. To Tharn’s surprise, another hill moved, and got up on its two large and massive legs. They slowly moved towards him, one leg at a time.

Tharn whispered, trying to confirm his suspicions, “System Sword, didn’t you say there was no sign of life? Because those two rocks seem pretty alive to me!”

There is no sign of life. I can’t explain it, Master, but I detect Magic in those two rocks. Maybe the Magic was dormant, and now it is not.”

Well, I guess I will find out that pretty fast, considering they are almost here. What about language now? Any luck?”

Accessing World Magic… Standby… Accessing Language… Finished. You can now understand them, Master.”

Tharn Zon looked up at the two walking rocks that were near him, and he slowly raised his hand and said, “Greetings. I am following someone that looks like me and arrived through a light blue Magical Portal like the one that brought me here. Have any of you seen him? Or where did he open a Portal to leave?”

A slow, deep voice answered him, “We… saw. Arrived… twenty… suns… ago. Tried… to detect… Magic… but... our Magic… is dormant… unless needed. He was… fast like… you. We live… slow time… He… gave up… waiting… for Magic… and left. You… friend?”

I am not his friend. He is an evil Mage that absorbs Magic from Worlds to become more powerful. The Worlds that he absorbed all Magic, died. He killed my World a long time ago, and I am trying to catch him so that he doesn’t kill more Worlds. But he keeps on escaping me.”

What… you do… him… if you… catch?”

I am going to kill him to stop his destruction.”

The big rock slowly shook its massive body and said, “He… kills Words… you kill… him. You… no different… Life is… blessing… should not… waste. This… World is… slow Magic… but… we live… not kill… others… There. Place… he used. You… go. You… evil… like him… This World… peaceful… no place… for you...”

Tharn Zon looked at where the moving rock was pointing with its body, which was a bit bent to one side.

As he walked towards the spot where the Hooded Mage created his Portal, he said, “I am not like him. You are lucky if you live in a peaceful World that is still alive. I visited a bunch of Worlds, some with so much life that you couldn’t take one step without seeing some wonder. But after he absorbed those World’s Magic, everyone living there died, because those Worlds could no longer sustain life. He kills to become more powerful, to achieve whatever he wants to achieve. I want to stop him and avenge all the millions of lives he took. That doesn’t make me evil.”

Evil… has many… forms… and names… still… evil. You say… avenge… Different words… same evil…”

Tharn Zon looked back and faced the two talking rocks.

He slowly shook his head and retorted, “You were lucky that he couldn’t detect your Magic, or this World would join the long list of Worlds he killed, and it would be another World that I had to avenge. You say I am evil, but you would have to create another word to describe what he would do to you and this World when he finished absorbing the Magic. Maybe we will meet again, and we can talk some more.”

We… not want… You leave… World peaceful… World slow… no place… for fast… like you...”

Okay, I give up. There is no point in explaining to those who don’t want to understand. System Sword, track the next location, and open a Portal.”

Analysing… Stand by… Detected reminiscence of Portal Spell… Tracking… Activating Portal Spell!”

A circular, light blue whirlwind appeared, and Lord Tharn Zon crossed it, entering the familiar dark void again.

He looked around and slowly shook his head. “I hate this place and the wait that it means. Those two living rocks were weird, but comparing me to the Hooded Mage… I was not counting on that. No one ever accused me of being evil for wanting to kill someone that has killed so many lives and destroyed so many Worlds, but I have already thought about it. I was not like this. It was never my sole purpose in life to kill someone… Maybe I have changed. I have no idea if it is a bad thing or not. I only know it is the right thing to do. Find him. Stop him. Avenge the ones that died. Am I wrong, System Sword?”

No, Master, you are not wrong. Those rocks said it. Life is a blessing that should not go to waste, but your mission is not a waste. It is necessary.”

Yeah… I guess those rocks got me worried with what they said, and all this darkness always ruins my mood. Any idea about the time for the next Portal?”

None, Master. It is impossible to analyse this voyage again.”

Tharn Zon sat on the emptiness and said, “System Sword, tell me how we met. At least your ability to record everything serves as a distraction from this weird, dark void.”

The Sword asked, sounding doubtful, “As you wish, Master. Shall I start from the beginning, right before you get me?”

Might as well. At least, from where you remember, because you don’t have records about how you got there.”

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