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In the mysterious cloud world of Numega, the once orderly kingdom was ruled by independent sovereign states across the land. The kingdom of Coronam ruled Northeast Drilema and midland Esten. The ancient capital of Kyrak was home to The Eternal Tower, a temple for highly trained knights from all across Numega, that formed the Emerald Guardians. Northern Klad and the Manna Isles were home to villages of mages, hunters, and fisherman. Flame wielding pyromancers were native to the mountain ridges of Procerus. Litore and Streaming Meadow were beautiful towns where merchants, shipbuilders, carpenters, blacksmiths, and swordsmen resided. Argent Cove was a northern village that traded with distant lands across the cloud oceans. For the most part, all was well in Numega, towns got along with each other and most people lived in peace (besides those that lived in Foedo and Lepers Exile), and the people's common enemy were demons, beasts and monsters, rather than other townspeople.
Numega was undisturbed for many eclipses, up until a new power arose.
King Virkem was slain in the mighty Luceta Castle, and the reign of peace over Numega came to a disrupt end, and the Emerald Guardians became cursed. Virkem was defeated by a young evil knight from Procerus. The knight was a powerful pyromancer named Mendax, he had learned dark pyromancies and spells from a cursed wraith from the Darkmoon Forest, and with his otherworldly powers he took control over Numega.
Mendax became a self proclaimed “Lord”. He was feared by people all across Numega, but there was little resistance towards Mendax and his newly formed Silver Order. Lord Mendax, the Esten Cherubim, Cursed Emerald Guards, and Silver Knights were almighty, and not even the strongest warriors had a chance against them. The peasants of Numega yearned freedom, but that had no hope and were blinded by fear. Those who resisted the Silver Order were met with execution and imprisonment.
“Hurry Micus!” one boy shouts back to the other while sprinting through the alleyway.
“I can’t believe you always drag me into stuff like this, Wik.”
“Don’t stop running to whine! Now let’s go, we are almost home,” Wik chuckles back.
The pair of children too young for sophistication, yet too old for simplicity burst through the wooden door of the largest home on the highest point in all of Litore.
“I can’t believe we made it,” Micus sighs as he shuts the door behind them. “Why did we have to go make trouble, Wik?”
“Oh, quit the babying. What else are we supposed to do? We only get yelled at if we try to help out on the shipyard. We might as well get yelled at for doing something fun.”
Micus retorts, “Why does your idea of fun have to get me in trouble too? Why couldn’t we just hang out with the rest of the boys and play knight in the woods? That sounds like plenty of a good idea to me.”
“Why would I waste my time with those simpletons? Anyway you know what we were doing is way more bold than any knight that they could ever be. Next time I will let you hang out with your own kind. Just be sure to not forget a handkerchief for the drool that will get on you!”
Micus yells back, “You arse!” He steps toward Wik and wraps his arms around Wik’s waist and pushes him back toward the tall bookshelf behind him.
Wik flails his arms down on him while writhing in effort to get free. Micus’s full force drives Wik into the shelf. Wik yells out in pain.
“Boys! What the Hell are you two doing!” the middle aged woman in her apron with wooden spoon in hand shouts. She whacks Micus across the face and grabs Wik firmly by the ear. “You two always manage to get into it with each other. One day, you two are going to depend on one another.”
Wik begs, “Mom, can you please not tell dad that we were fighting.”
“You should have thought about that before you started fighting,” the boys’ mom shakes her head. “I won’t tell him anything,” she starts to laugh, “but it should not be too hard to figure out what is going on with you two staring into corners on opposite sides of the house.”
The two obey as she points to the corners with a don’t-test-me look on her face.
She calmly struts back into the kitchen brandishing her spoon like a sword.
Micus curses under his breath, “Thanks a lot, Wik.”
“No talking you two!” a shout interrupts from the kitchen.
The two boys don’t dare cross their mother again and just stand with their faces buried in opposite corners.
“Where are my two favorite boys!” a hearty voice projects through the house as a stocky arm pushes the door open. The tall, bearded man bursts in and finds the two still on opposite sides of the room. “Uh oh, looks like we ran into a bit of trouble again.”
He momentarily neglects the issue and proceeds into his kitchen. “Good evening, love. What sort of magical dish have you prepared today?” the elated man whispers as he lovingly embraces his wife.
“Just a ham today,” she sighs, “I wish the boys could just get along. All of the fighting is putting gray hairs on my head like nobody’s business.”
“Well, I sure don’t see any of those,” her husband smiles, “don’t worry babe, I will go talk to them.” He confidently, yet reluctantly strolls into the next room. “Boys, come sit down next to me.”
The brothers stare at the ground and obey. They kneel down next to their father and gather around the fireplace.
“Micus, you tell me what happened today,” their dad requests.
“But, Dad -” Wik’s interruption is halted by his dad’s single finger in the air. Wik knows not to question further when that signal is presented.
Micus looks to Wik. Wik stares back with a scornful grimace. Micus disapprovingly shakes his head and begins, “Wik had the bright idea of going to Orden the blacksmith’s to steal a sword. He didn’t tell me that was his plan before I agreed to go out with him though. Of course, Mr. Smooth got caught and we had to run all the way across the city to try and escape.”
“Is that all, Son?”
“Well, then when we got home he was being a jerk about me not wanting to go cause mischief with him anymore, so I slammed him into the bookshelf. That’s when Mom caught us.”
“Thank you, Micus. Do you have anything to add to that Wik.”
Wik pauses. His mind races. He cannot decide whether to deny, to elaborate, to just sit silently. The truth is always best. That is surely the way his dad would prefer.
“I just want to be a cool knight like you once were, Father.”
“That was many eclipses ago Wik, I’m nothing more than a shipbuilder now.” the father states.
“But I thought you’re head of the village council!” Wik exclaims.
Micus looks back and forth at his brother and father, just hoping that Wik can get yelled at and punished. Then, he can go up to his room and not be bothered any more.
“I was Wik, I was. But not anymore.” Their father stands up and shakes his head, “You know that son.”
Wik darts towards his father, “I forgot father. Either way you once were.”
“Why aren’t you part of the council anymore?” Micus asks their father politely.
“I did what was necessary to keep Mendax from completely taking over Litore. Something Mendax required was my resignation from the council.”
“What about the Silver Knight incident?” Wik questions.
“That’s not to be spoken of.” His father demands angrily. “Boys, you two need to try and get…” he could tell that this speech will get them nowhere. Telling it this many times over with only more fights coming up Venrious decides that he needs to change his strategy. “You know what boys, I know that what I’m saying is going in one ear and out the other. How about we settle this once and all. You two will fight until the both of you realize that all of this fighting needs to stop.”
Their father picks both of them by the shoulder and shoves them outside in front of the house. “I am going to wait and watch. Nothing more. Let’s just get this over with already.”
The two boys look each other in the eye and with panic look back to their father.
Wik and Micus can tell from their father’s eyes that there must be some sort of lesson to be learned from this experience. Their eyes meet once again, but this time no panic or fear is present. The large flat spot in front of the house should provide plenty of space for such a fight. If one of the two tries to run away, the only exit will be down the hill since the door is blocked by their robust father.
Micus and Wik both hunch over like wrestlers and begin circling to their right. Wik draws his lips back in a snarl. Micus cracks his knuckles. The two boys charge at each other with remarkable ferocity.
The two entangle themselves in the strangle of the other. They both try to hold and deliver blows at the same time. Micus is the first to realize that this strategy will get him nowhere. He lets go and just as Wik is about to slam him to the ground, Micus lands a stiff uppercut right on the fragile jaw of his brother.
Wik stumbles back and sways for a moment. Just as he realizes where he is once again, Micus follows his last strike up with a crippling gut punch. Wik collapses to the ground. Micus shows no signs of slowing down as he kneels on Wik’s chest and punches him repeatedly in the face. Wik writhes and scratches at Micus to try and shove him off. Wik wants to yell out to have the fight ended so badly, but he cannot stomach the idea of losing to his brother.
Wik reaches his left hand out and feels along the ground. His panicking hand finds a fist-sized rock. As soon as he grabs the rock he swings with all of his remaining strength at Micus’s head. The blow to the temple sends him flying off of Wik ragdollishly.
Leaning against the door their dad’s eyes light up. In no more than a single moment, he prepares to sprint in a stop the fight.
Luckily, both boys lie on their backs clearly panting for every breath they can suck in. The two stare into the cloudy sky. Wik’s eyes are beginning to swell shut from the bruising, his mouth is full of blood, and his nose is twisted in a manner that is practically vomit inducing.
Micus’s temple is profusely gushing blood even though his hand is pressing hard against his wound.
“You and I will never be the same, Micus. I hate you. Why did you have to ruin our family? I wish we would have just left you outside when you showed up on our doorstep.”
Wik takes aim at the deer, carefully lining up his shot to put his arrow straight through the heart. Drawing his arm back, he tenses the bow and slowly breathes out. Then, an explosion rocks the woods. The deer bounds away, and Wik curses, firing his arrow at the retreating hindquarters. It misses by a millimeter and flies off into the woods. For a moment Wik thinks about looking for it, but concedes that he will never find it in the fading daylight. Defeated, he turns to go home, only to see smoke rising from where his house is on the edge of the forest. Wik drops his bow and begins sprinting, desperately trying to make up the hill, and home to his father.
The crater is a jagged, irregular hole roughly twenty feet across, with smoke writhing from the ruins of rafters and foundation. The entire house is obliterated, not a single remnant of Wik’s childhood home left standing. Tears stream from his face as he jumps into the hole and begins digging through the rubble, lifting beams and throwing rocks until he uncovers the soot covered face of his father. Straining to breathe under the heavy log covering his chest, every breath sounds like a broken forge bellows.
“Who was it, father? Who did this to you? Tell me!” Wik is yelling by the end of his sentence, the words ringing in the clearing made by the explosion. His father tries to say something, but fails. Taking a rattling breath, he manages to force out a mangled sentence.
“A child born under full moons light
Is the only one who can slay the knight.”
Wik’s father pushes the words through the ruin of his chest, and the effort of speaking leaves him coughing and gasping. Tears stream down Wik’s face as he holds his dying father, and he asks
“What does that mean, father? Why did you tell me this?”
His father tries desperately to get one more sentence out, but fails, his lungs finally failing under the weight of the beam, his final breath streaming out and his eyes going dark. Wik can barely see through the tears making his eyes burn, and as he stumbles away he trips over a symbol blasted into the soil in front of his house… a massive sun cross, the symbol of the Empire. Scrambling up, Wik steps back and looks at the deep scores in the dirt, anger filling him as he beholds the symbol that gives proof of who had done this. Purpose flows through Wik, and he resolves in that moment to work until his dying day to undo Lord Mendax and all he had created.
At that moment, Micus sprints into the clearing, skidding to a stop in front of the sun cross. Even from across the cross, Wik can see the panic in Micus’s eyes as he looks past Wik toward the ruin of what had been their home.
“I saw the smoke and came as fast as I possibly could. What the hell happened? Is dad OK?” Micus is cut short from his rambling by the sun cross in front of him. He quickly puts two and two together, and his eyes harden as he looks at Wik. Wik can tell that Micus is just as resolved as him to destroy the Empire and all it stands for.
They buried their father next to their mother, and had fashioned a makeshift headstone out of a piece of driftwood. No words were exchanged between the two young men, and they sat in silence before their father’s grave as the golden sun set.
Wik and Myra stroll into the inner wastelands of Foedo, they are in search of the Lost Kyrak Demon. The Demon’s blood is required to gain Godly strength.
“Are you nervous?” Myra asks Wik.
Wik shakes his head and smiles, “I have you here with me, together we can easily defeat this demon.”
“We’ve only fought bandits and a few cursed knights. This Kyrak Demon won’t be an easy feat!” Myra shouts. Her long dark hair covers half of her face, and her inadequate robe sways as they walk.
Wik’s chainmail armor is much more appropriate for this situation. He is a knight in training after all, whereas Myra is an experienced cleric. She was a lifelong member of the Esten Cathedral, and she knew many miracles and some spells as well. Her father was a deacon of the Cathedral, but he and the rest of the churches clergy were massacred by the Silver Order by command of Lord Mendax. Myra and a few other stragglers were the only clerics left in Numega. Mendax feared the clergy, he knew that they held great powers and could perform miracles, something he could never do. Those who had a dark essence didn’t have the ability to cast heavenly spells.
Myra and Wik approach a swampy bog in the wasteland. The ground is soft and wet, the land is suffocated by a dense fog, and the air smells of rotten corpses and sour toxins.
“I’m beginning to feel nauseous Wik.” Myra slurs.
Wik reaches into his leather satchel and grabs two bright orange fruits, he hands them to Myra insisting she eats them.
“What are these?” She asks in a daze.
“They are sunberries, they will combat the effects of the toxins we’re surrounded by. Eat them or you’ll pass out and die.”
She takes them and begins to eat, Wik grabs some from the satchel for himself and they continue their journey deeper into the bog.
They pass a small derelict village on a rocky outcropping. There are about a dozen buildings, all wooden and falling apart. It appeared to be an old settlement that has been abandoned for many eclipses.
Wik and Myra enter one of the old shacks cautiously in search of loot. They need all they can get for their long journey. Myra finds a handful of poison arrows and some herbs used in alchemy. Wik stumbles upon a book of pyromancies, iron ore, and a wooden shield.
“You don’t have a shield yet, take this.” Wik says as he hands it to Myra.
She grabs it and holds it in her left hand, she knows the shield isn’t durable, but it’ll last her for some time.
They loot the rest of the village, luckily they encounter no enemies, but unfortunately they don’t find much treasure aside from some ore and crystals for weaponsmithing. This village they were in was an old mining settlement, the residents were slain by the Silver Order. Those who survived became cursed and are malevolent.
Myra and Wik walk towards the bog, but they are suddenly interrupted as the ground begins to shake violently, and trees topple to the ground not too far from where the two are standing.
Suddenly a large creature emerges from the wasteland, and the ground begins to rumble even worse as the beast heads towards Wik and Myra.
“It’s the Lost Kyrak Demon!” Wik shouts as he draws his straight sword. Myra positions her shield in front of her chest and holds her staff with her right hand.
The large, olive colored monster rushes towards them. He is nearly five times the height of a human, has a muscular build, and has the scaly rough skin of a reptile. The demon has six eyes and a disgusting mouth with jagged teeth, and has half a dozen horns protruding from his head. The beast is very bulk and obviously a strong enemy, fortunately the only weapon he wields is large wooden battle axe.
Myra casts a miracle which slows down the demon while Wik charges the monster at full force. The demon attempts to strike Wik with his axe, but the warrior dodges every attack the demon attempts. Wik slashes at the demons fat legs quickly with precision, its enough to slightly weaken the Kyrak Demon.
The monster furiously whips his spiked tail back and forth and lifts his legs to evade Wik.
Myra seizes this opportunity and lifts her staff high and concentrates. She aims at the demon’s belly and casts a divine spear. The spell’s bright yellow beam spirals into the Kyrak Demon’s side, it does tremendous damage and the monster becomes even more aggressive, almost instantly after getting struck he stomps towards Myra.
Wik grabs some ash oil from his satchel and applies it to his sword. Flames emit from his weapon, and he dashes towards the demon and attacks. This time the beast fights with his axe, and Wik gets sliced by the axe in his lower back and he screams in agony.
Myra casts a second divine spear, this time hitting the demon right in the face.
“Wik!” Myra shouts as loud as she can, “He’s weak! I can’t cast anymore spells right now, just finish him!”
Wik is in terrible pain, but he knows that this is the best chance to finish the fight.
With the flaming sword in hand, Wik pounces towards the monster and impales his soft belly. This is the finishing blow, and the Kyrak Demon flails as he topples to the ground, dead.
A glowing orb rises from the fallen creatures body and Wik takes it in his hands, absorbing it’s power. Myra grabs the Kyrak Demon crystal, which can be used to upgrade weapons.
“Let’s rendezvous with Micus in Streaming Meadow. We’ll need to give him the crystal since he knows how to use them.” Myra tells Wik.
“He is probably still in Mangle Swamp. Hopefully he’s doing well.” Wik replies as he cares for his wound.
Myra and Wik rest and heal before they start their trek back to Litore. They were still very far away from their final goal, to slay Mendax and destroy the Silver Order.