I was gone at a summer academe thing, and that’s why I wasn’t able to post anything last week. Sorry.
But I have Chapter 6 for you all! Enjoy.
“How did you know my name?” Oklan asked.
“I saw it in the stars. That is what I do. I foresee and foretell.” The old man was very short, wrinkled, and dark-skinned. He didn’t have the symbol on his forehead, but instead on one of his cheeks.
“But the elders said that there aren’t any prophecies telling of my coming.”
“Prophecies.There is a difference between prophecies and reading the stars. Prophecies tell a long time. They tell all. But the stars only tell one day at a time,” he made an odd motion with his hands. “Maybe two. I saw your name last night. But even the stars have been quiet recently. I fear the end may be near. Come here,” he said, motioning for Oklan to come closer to him and the metal contraption. “Look through the Viosphe.”
Oklan looked at the Viosphe. It was comprised of three metal tubes that were connected, two spheres of water, and a few sheets of very pure mica. He looked through the end closest him. Even though it was daylight, he saw a grouping of eight bright stars.
“These,” Jeorle said, “are the stars that told me your name.”
“But how can you read them?”
“A very complicated process. I have to record down the pattern they make, then compare it to similar patterns I have seen before, then find out the corresponding letters in my star map. It takes a while. But it is my place in this community. And besides,” he smiled, “I like doing it.”
“Right now I’m trying to figure out where my future lies. I have heard of a shadow coming across this land. The elders think that I have a part to play in stopping that.”
“I believe you do as well. But…the stars do not tell us everything. The only thing I saw in the stars other than your name was one other name. Vrezhen.”
The name sent an unexplainable chill down Oklan’s spine.
“I looked him up in our archives, but nothing. Absolutely nothing.” A dark look had come over Jeorle and Oklan decided it was probably a good time to go.
“Thank you for everything, Jeorle. I will try my best to defeat this…Vrezhen.” With that, he started down the stairs.
“Indeed you will,” Jeorle said softly as Oklan made his way down the wooden stairs. “Indeed you will.”
After leaving Jeorle’s observatory, Oklan headed back in the direction that he remembered coming from. He was correct. While he walked he created a bit of water to drink. He realized that it had been almost an entire day since he had used his powers last. As he made his way through the tunnels through the rock of the mountain, he found Henix walking along as well, but in the other direction.
“Hello, Oklan. Have you just come from seeing Jeorle?” Henix said.
“Yes. He…was helpful, I suppose.”
An aged smile came over Henix’s face. “He can be sometimes. Other times, not nearly so. Actually, I was just on my way to see him myself. ”
While Oklan was briefly telling Henix of what Jeorle had spoken of, a young man rushed up to them both. He was covered head to foot in a white dust. He made a curt bow to Henix, hesitated, and then did the same for Oklan.
“Elder and water-master. A miner has disapeared. The mine he was digging in has been deserted, after all the other miners heard the news and fled. Help us, please!” He seemed to address the final plea of a sentence especially to Oklan.
Henix turned to Oklan. “Perhaps this is the beginning of your journey.”
“Show me where the tunnel is,” Oklan said to the young man.
The two of them went back into the great hall, then down another tunnel leading to the right. Oklan noticed as they walked that this tunnel was different from all the others he had been in; the walls were rougher, and there weren’t the little niches in the wall where the torches were. All the torches here were spaced out further, creating pools of light that separated the puddles darkness.
“We are in a crystal mine right now.” the young man told him.
“What is your name?”
“Mebwyl. I work here, as you probably assumed.”
They walked on without further comment. A few minutes later Mebwyl stopped.
“This is the mine.” After gesturing towards the left side of a fork in the tunnel, he stood awkwardly.
Sensing his trouble, Oklan spoke. “You can leave now if you wish. I’ll go investigate this by myself.”
The young man said goodbye to Oklan then walked away, relieved.
“What could you be?” Oklan spoke into the darkness, quietly. He stepped forward.
The tunnel wasn’t as dark as he thought it was. Torches were again spread out, this time further apart, creating lakes of darkness in-between the puddles of light. After walking a few minutes, he approached the end of the tunnel. There was a lantern there, and Oklan was able to see clearly.
It appeared that the miner had broken through a wall of stone into a cave. One side of the cave was smoothed except for one section where a symbol had been engraved. It consisted of seventeen concentric circles with one line coming from the center through them all and extending a few inches past the final circle.
“I think I’ve found you,” Oklan said quietly.
Almost seeming like Oklan had opened it with his words, the wall slid to the side in much the same way that the doors in the village did.
Oklan walked into the room beyond slowly and carefully. It was a massive chamber, the ceilings rising high into the darkness. At the end of the chamber was a black stone throne, engraved with strange carvings all around. Sitting in the throne was one encircled in blackness.
“I, too, have been waiting for you, Kyreth Oklan. Waiting…waiting for a very long time.
“Are you the one who took the miner?” Oklan demanded.
“It was I.” The figure raised his arm and pointed towards a body laying a few feet from his throne, that Oklan hadn’t noticed before. The eyes of the man were white and he lay deathly still.
“Why?! Who are you?” Oklan demanded.
“I am Vrezhen. I hungered, so I ate. I need souls to survive. To survive this long, and to imagine that a poorly-trained Kyreth like you would come to challenge me.” He let out a roll of deep laughter that echoed eerily through the empty hall.
“You fool. You have no idea what is going on. No idea whatsoever.” He let out a cry of words that sparked a memory in Oklan’s mind, though he didn’t know what they meant. Vrezhen leaped off his throne, throwing a bolt of dark energy at Oklan. He narrowly avoided it. Oklan summoned water into the air before him and shot out several ice spikes at Vrezhen. Vrezhen spoke another incantation an instant before the ice stabbed though his body. The air around his body wavered slightly, then he disappeared. The ice spikes stuck into the wall behind where he had been standing. A few feet to the right of where he had been the air wavered and he reappeared.
“I don’t need to block attacks when I can just dodge them,” Vrezhen snarled.
Oklan threw a sphere of water into the air, dropped to the ground, and flattened the water while freezing it, creating a circular blade of ice. Vrezhen looked somewhat surprised, but merely responded by jumping slightly and speaking another spell. He floated off of the ground and above the blade.
“You really don’t understand how hopeless this battle is for you? I’ll tell you. I’m going to kill you – actually, no. I’m going to leave you alive, just so you can live with the fact that you failed. I’m going to beat you, then leave this planet.”
Planet? Oklan wondered. Where else could he go? Where else was there?
“But please, at least try something interesting.”
Oklan thought for a moment, then realized a possible attack he could do that might kill Vrezhen. Of course, it might kill him as well. He summoned his power and created a sphere of water. He turned it into droplets throughout the air. He split the water apart into oxygen and hydrogen, and set it aflame by raising the heat.
A massive explosion engulfed the entire hall. The last thing Oklan saw was Vrezhen being blown backwards by a plume of flame.