Legend speaks of a powerful warlock who had a most amazing power. Draver Axtos could wield black lightning. Aside from the paradox of black light, these bolts also had dark energies of untold strength. Draver was a great warrior; he decimated armies comprised of thousands of warriors, throwing them aside with his black lightning. His ambition drove him to build a legendary army of warlocks, other-worlders, and an elite squad of warriors called Raven Guards. He led his army across the world, conquering and leaving destruction in his wake, until finally reaching Exobillen, the city which represents the pinnacle of man’s wisdom. He attacked the city walls, breached the gates, and broke into the royal palace. However, it was here he encountered four mighty warriors, who call themselves “The Guardians of Light”. These four young heroes, a Harpy, a Werewolf, a Woman, and an Elf, challenged Draver, and defeated him. He fled back to the dark mountain Shadenwar, where he licked his wounds, and vowed revenge against the four warriors. To this day, he has not been seen, but Draver vowed he would return to exact his vengeance on “The Guardians of Light”.
Vesin closed the heavy volume titled “Legends of the World” and got up from his chair. He stretched, tucked his hair behind his pointed ears, and walked outside the large house he was in. He got on a large hill, and felt the breeze ruffle his long smooth hair. Closing his eyes, he listened to all the sounds of summer: Grass rustling in the wind, leaves blowing, and birds singing their songs.
Then, he heard, something that didn’t belong; wings flapping, hard and fast. He turned around, but too late as a large feathered figure crashed into him. Cursing in archaic elvish, he and the figure rolled down the hill, landing at the bottom with a thud. Pushing the being off him, Vesin was surprised to see that it was laughing heartily, a bright, chirpy sort of laugh. “Yerik, I was trying to meditate” the elf said in an exasperated tone.
“Like that matters” the harpy replied, still laughing. Then Vesin began to laugh as well, and they sat there enjoying each other’s company, when Vesin heard a sharp voice call, “Vesin, Yerik, get up here right now!” Startled, the elf and harpy scrambled back up the hill to find two beautiful girls at the door of the house. The first angrily said, “You two had better be getting ready, or did you forget that today is the ceremony?” Then, the second girl spoke, “Shyur, you don’t have to be so mad at them, today is supposed to be fun!” With a grin, Vesin calmly said, “Thanks Tiain, but Shyur’s right, we should be getting ready, not playing.
Then, the four turned around to see a tall elf coming out of the house, carrying with him a large bundle. “Alright kids” he said in a kind tone, “Here’s your armor, go see Shyur’s father for your weapons.” “What!?” Yerik incredulously cried, “Already? It’s barely morning!” Chuckling, the elf, who was Vesin’s father, tossed Yerik the heavy sack, toppling him over. “I never told you it would be easy.” Vesin’s father stated, “Now get going!”
The four adolescents donned their armor, which consisted mainly of leather, with some bronze covering those important areas, and set out for Shyur’s house, which was a short distance south. Yerik easily flew to the house with his powerful wings, and Shyur, who was a Werewolf, transformed and bounded forward at tremendous velocity, racing the harpy to the cottage. This left Vesin and Tiain walking to the house by themselves. They were silent for a few minutes, until Tiain spoke, “So, Vesin, are you excited?”
“Why wouldn’t I be? This is one of the biggest days of our lives, when we finally turn into adults!”
“Well, isn’t it fraught with danger?”
“Ha! Not any danger that the four of us can’t handle! Yerik can hit any target at one hundred yards exactly where he wants with a bow, Shyur can tear any monster to pieces, you’ve memorized some of the best spells out there, and I am a great swordsman!”
With a sigh, Tiain turned back to face the cottage, which they were now approaching. Yerik and Shyur were testing out their weapons, a finely crafted bow and a pair of curved daggers respectively. When Vesin and Tiain reached Shyur’s house, they were greeted by her father, a lean man, with a scruffy silvery beard. He greeted them heartily, and handed the two their weapons. Tiain received a sturdy pine staff in the shape of a dragon. The mouth of the dragon formed the tip, from which magical projectiles could be fired. The dragon’s body and tail formed the intricate staff itself, while the wings, which were folded in the staff, could be unlatched, forming a strong shield.
Vesin received a scimitar, but it was no ordinary scimitar. Its appearance was very much like a flying Djin or Genie. The sword blade was wavy and curved, looking very much like the vaporous trails of a spirit. The fists of the Djin formed a cross hilt, and its twisting neck made the handle and grip. The Djin’s head created an exquisite pommel, which could be easily used for bashing. The scimitar was also imbued with mystical powers, many of them unknown, but it was known that the sword could command, to some extent, all the elements. Vesin’s father had used this sword through much of his journeys, and it had served him well.
With their weapons and armor, the four junior adventurers said their farewells to Shyur’s father, and set out to Yerik’s home. Here, they found the mothers of Yerik and Tiain waiting for them at the door, bags of foodstuff in their arms. “Mom” Tiain began, “How are we going to carry all of this?” Yerik joined in as well, “Yes, we really don’t need all that much food, and we’ll only be out for a day or so.” “Well,” Yerik’s harpy mother stated, “Shyur might want a little something extra.” Her point was accented with a growl from Shyur’s fuzzy middle. “Alright, I give up.” Tiain said, throwing her hands in the air.
With their food and arms, Vesin, Yerik, Shyur, and Tiain set out for Bogwood forest, which, despite the name, was actually quite solid, and really quite pleasant to walk in, except for one thing. Deep in the heart of the forest, was an abandoned fortress, laden with traps. It was here, that a great monster slept, and where the adolescent journeymen needed to go.
The trip was a quiet one, with naught but a few squirrels pausing their brisk pace. In the heart of the forest, stood the abandoned fortress. Its dilapidated walls were easily scaled by the party, and they soon reached the entrance to the castle. “This is odd” Shyur despondently said, “The entire trip here has been quiet, and I don’t see any traps.” At this, Yerik replied, “Oh, I bet we’ll see plenty of traps soon enough!”