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Breaking Blood and Bonds
Resentment, aggression, hatred and rage. These were all the feelings he was told to ignore since he was a child. That bad people were meant to have those feelings. As far as he was concerned he wasn’t a bad person at all. No, he hadn’t done anything wrong. He was on THEIR side; the ones that put him here to rot in a cell until God only knew when. And it was because of them that he was feeling these emotions. It was their fault he was feeling aggression. He punched the cold stone wall. Their fault he was feeling rage. He took another punch at the wall, this time drawing blood. He hated the people who put him there, and he resented the fact that they were still alive.
My brother… my baby brother…no. I have no brother.
He continued to take out his rage on the now bloody stone. His brother was the one that had sold him out. He was the one who had put him here. Like a caged dog.
“You bastard! I trusted you!” He screamed in vain, all the hate spilling out over his hands in a river of crimson. The sorrow and aggression mixing in the air.
The color of his eyes …the lying bastard…
The salt stung his eyes as the tears of rage fell down his pale face, mixing with the pool of blood on the floor.
“No..” he shut his eyes and wiped away the salty droplets on his forearm. When he opened them he saw his reflection in the shallow pool of blood on the floor. He was pathetic. That was HIS throne. Not that traitor of a brother.
Improbus you’re a fool…
“But I won’t be any longer… this can’t go on.”
The footfalls echoing off the narrow hallways of the hive like prisons brought him back from his thoughts. A man of about the age of 40 came up to his cell. Improbus stood a little straighter, and held his head a little higher. No emotion showed on his face. If the eyes were the windows to the soul, then Improbus’ violet orbs showed he had no soul left to sell.
The man stared at kid in front of him. This boy couldn’t have been any older than 19, maybe 21 at the most. What he could have done to be in here was beyond him but what did he know, he was just the guard. All he knew was that this kid was supposedly a high security prisoner.
He didn’t look dangerous...but judging from the pool of blood gathering on the floor he did have a bad temper. But then again he guessed he would be mad too if he were stuck in a solitary cell for treason to the throne.
Another man came up to the cell the guard was watching. He was dressed in strange robes and had very short hair. He carried himself with an air of importance.
“I was told to switch posts with you.” The new man began
“I didn’t hear anything about that…what position are you from?” the guard asked skeptically.
“That information would be classified.” He said with a straight face.
“Listen, this is a high security prisoner, no offence but I can kill a man by just looking at him. What are your qualifications, my good man?” the strange new man added with a smile.
The original guard started to fidget in nervousness and refused to make eye contact with the new man.
“Unless of course… you want me to take this to your supervisor?” the new man threatened.
“No, no! Don’t do that, I-I’ll just go find something else to…uhh…” the original guard started backing away before he broke into a run.
Improbus studied the man In front of him. He wasn’t dressed like an executioner. He was going to live… For now anyway.
“What’s your name, mage?” the man had asked Improbus. He stared at the man for a few seconds before responding.
“My name is Improbus.” He replied coolly. He may be a (wrongly) convicted felon, but one must not forget the family he was born to. That birth right dictates the grounds that entitle one to act upon in mixed company. Typically he was a mild mannered young man, so he tried to be polite given the circumstances.
“Well then, Improbus,” the man started. He had shaggy salt and pepper hair, with deep cerulean blue eyes.
“My name is Leviticus. I am a mage, much like you young fledging.” He said this with a small smile on his face. Whoever this man was, he must be a friend. What other reason would a sane person wander into the Realm of Nightshade; well, granted this man was sane, that is.
“What do you want with me? Why did you come here?” Improbus asked. He had a million questions and wanted answers now.
The man only chuckled at him. How impatient the youth are, but then again he was the purple eyed boy a few hundred years ago.
“A few of my colleagues had heard of a brave young man; next in line for the throne, and… a vampire and a mage he was. This person wouldn’t happen to be you young Improbus?” Blue eyes met amethyst
Improbus’ ears perked up at this. Whatever this man wanted was trouble. Improbus could feel it. Then again, Leviticus, if that was his name, didn’t seem like he meant him true harm. He may genuinely want to help Improbus. Even if this was all a ploy, he didn’t have many options. If Leviticus was going to spring him, he would much favor it being a trick and fending for himself after he was out of this hell hole then deal with the executioner.
“I am.” Improbus took a deep breath before walking up to the cell entrance. Pressing his face against the cool metal bars he looked up at the older man. “But what I want to know is what any of this has to do with anything.”
“Well, it seems like you don’t like to beat around the bush now, do you young fledgling? Very well then. We, the people I work with and I, feel you could be a great asset to our cause.” Leviticus answered bluntly, a bit too blunt for Improbus’ liking.
“Which would be? You can hardly enlist someone without telling them what their signing up for. You’d make a terrible general.” He retorted back. He was in no mood for these games, and he had no intention of being forced to the frontlines of some other realm. If he had a death wish, he would just stay put.
Leviticus rolled his eyes at the boy. Now he was getting mad too. “I’ll tell you what boy…” he started fishing around in one of his cloak pockets... Then another. “Ah, here we are.” He pulled out a small gemstone, a ruby.
“Do you know what this is child?” Leviticus extended his arm, offering the stone to Improbus. The young mage looked curiously at the rock in Leviticus’ hand. It was a gem, nothing special. He decided to accept the gesture and took the stone in his own hand. It was jagged and very red. Blood red. His eyebrows furrowed in frustration and he scowled at the old man.
“It`s just a ruby. What`s so special about this? There are millions in the mines! What exactly are you trying to pull here?” Improbus lashed out at him. Forget being mild mannered, he had just had the week from hell and this guy wasn’t making life any easier.
Leviticus laughed softly at the Youngsters outburst. This child knew nothing of his own heritage!
“That stone is more than just a precious gem dear child, people who possess the gift of magic, Mages, can channel it with certain stones.” Explained Leviticus, a feeling of triumph welled in his chest as the young fledglings expression turned from that of rage to that of curiosity.
“I could give you a demonstration. That is, if you accept my offer, young fledgling?”
Improbus was torn, should he go with this senile old man, or await his trial with a certain executioner…
“How do I know you’re not lying?” Improbus asked him calmly, but on the inside he was a sea of emotions. Mostly anticipation.
Leviticus looked at this child in confusion and anger. Either this child was going out of his way to irritate him or he had some serious trust problems. Leviticus pinched the bridge of his nose in annoyance.
“Alright, how about this; I know you don’t know how to use your power yet. Come with me and I can show you how to harness your energy. Something like an apprentice if you will, what do you say fledgling?” Leviticus extended his hand; Improbus looked at it before reaching out with his own, and shook Leviticus’ hand.
“Alright, but know this; if you go back on your word I will kill you.” Improbus stated emotionless.
Leviticus raised his hands in surrender, “Calm your fire young fledgling, I wish you no harm.” He chuckled. Then he began to search in his pockets once more. A stupid grin plastered his face when he found what he was looking for, it was a Moonstone.
“Alright Improbus stand back away from the door, I don’t want you getting hurt.” Leviticus’ eyes started to glow as well as the Moonstone in his hand. Improbus did as he was told and backed as close up to the far wall as possible. Cold stones poking into his back reminded him that this wasn’t a dream, and the Mage in front of him was very real, and his power had the potential to be very dangerous.
An iridescent blue light enveloped his arms and legs bathing the cold cell in a bright light. Improbus had to admit the sight was impressive, although he himself was a mage he had very little knowledge of how to use his power. He also concluded he had a lot to learn.
Leviticus took a step forward and threw his left arm back. Winding his arm above his head he throwing the blue light of whatever it was at the bars of his cell. A loud hissing noise was made as the blue connected with the bars of the cell.
How could something like light destroy solid metal? Improbus was beyond impressed, he was downright scared.
“H-ha-how, how did you do that? What was light?!” Improbus mentally slapped himself. He was a vampire damn it! And vampire royalty at that! And as a prince of Nightshade he does NOT stutter! He was in control here damn it!
“All in good time my fledgling, but for the moment we need to hurry, a loud crash like that wouldn’t go unnoticed for long, hurry now.” Leviticus ushered Improbus out of his cell. He was very apprehensive around the older Mage.
“You have no weapons I take it?” Leviticus asked him as they made their way around a corner. There was a small alcove in the wall that Leviticus dragged his new apprentice into. Then sat down for a moment and Leviticus started rummaging in his robes once again. That man could hide a small child in one of those pockets and no one would be the wiser!
“Now I know for a fact that you are trained to fight with close range weapons.” He said not looking up from whatever he was hunting for in his copious amount of pockets.
“I prefer hand to hand, but yes I am.” Improbus replied stoic once more
“I never took the stone back from you did I?” Improbus shook his head no. He still had it clutched in his hand, having forgotten about it during all the excitement.
“Good, good. Now Improbus I need you to pay close attention.’ He started. Leviticus took his own stone and opened the palm of his hand. ‘As I said before, these stones act as channels for your energy, your magic. Some stones you will find work better with you than others. But for now the basics will have to do. I want you to take your stone and concentrate on it. Feel your energy flow to it.”
Improbus did as he was instructed; he was raised to be a realist. Feeling wasn’t his strong suit, unless if they were negative emotions. But those were reserved for his brother, the traitor. Just thinking about him made Improbus’ blood boil.
Leviticus watched his new fledgling as he tried to hone in on his magic. His face twisted into a scowl and his ruby began to glow. He was in a trance like state; this was wrong, very wrong. He had poured his energy into the ruby alright, but it was all the negative energy.
Improbus’ eyes turned red as his ruby. He felt he was losing control of his body. His heart started beating faster and his palm started to burn. The ruby! That’s what was burning him! Arm shaking he dropped the searing stone on the cold floor and watched it sizzle. Gradually the ruby stopped glowing and his eyes followed suit. Eyes wide, Improbus stared at the stone on the floor. What the hell had just happened?
“You need to control your anger young fledgling. Having a calm energy will ensure you are in control of you and your magic. Although it can be useful in battle it is a skill that can take quite some time to master. Seeing as you are used to fighting hand to hand, that little trick you just discovered can pack a nasty surprise to whoever is on the receiving end.”
Improbus just nodded, this was a strange new world he was now supposed to live in. Heaven help him.
“Tell me fledgling, have you ever faded before?” Leviticus asked an overwhelmed Improbus. He once again screwed up his face in confusion; this was going to be a long day.
Leviticus sighed; it had been years since he had had an apprentice, let alone one he had to teach everything. “How do I explain this…well, I’ll explain later. At the moment it would seem we have company.” Heavy footsteps could be heard charging towards them. It would seem that they had just realized Nightshades most wanted had escaped right under their noses. The idiots.
Leviticus grabbed Improbus and dragged him off the floor from where they were sitting. He started running, still having a hold on Improbus’ arm; he directed them away from the guards and straight at a wall! Improbus was now fully convinced this guy was insane.
“What the hell are you doing?!” Improbus shouted, he tried getting away from the mage but his grip was too tight. Leviticus smiled and started laughing like this was the funniest thing he had ever heard.
“Fading, my fledgling!” Leviticus answered him. Improbus closed his eyes and waited for the impact to come, instead he felt an odd sensation, like his body was disappearing into nothing. He opened his eyes to see what was going on. Leviticus was gone, and he was too, or at least his body was.
They had literally “faded” into a shadow. Coasting along the corridors as a black shadow the two were leaving the guards in their wake and gaining incredible speed. Past cells, through guards and occasionally under a door they finally made it out. The mage had kept going after; he wanted to make sure he had as much distance between them and the prison as possible. After a few miles they were in a forest, miles away from any civilization. Leviticus decided to stop there for the night…or was it day? The sky was always clouded with a mixture of purple and gray, they had two moons, but Leviticus wasn’t sure what constituted day or night in this realm.
Slowly Improbus regained feeling of his body as they became solid once more. It was a dizzying sensation and he felt as if he had no use of his legs. After returning to his solid self he collapsed on the ground, and grabbed some leaves in his hands.
“I never thought I’d be so happy about dirt in my life.” He said tiredly. This morning he was on death row, and now he was an escaped fugitive, on the run with a Mage to who knows what realm. But none of that mattered right now, now all that mattered was sleep.
That night he dreamt of a place where he wasn’t an escaped prisoner, a place where he had no traitor of a brother. He dreamt a place where he could lie under an amethyst flower bush, and just be.