Conjuring Up An Army

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: The Imaginarium
Is there any way to stop that army of approaching dragons?

Submitted: July 06, 2017

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Submitted: July 06, 2017

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Conjuring Up An Army.

I could hear it all, the commotion. There were people rushing backwards and forwards; women were screaming, men were cursing, children were crying. One quick glance outside told me that my master was about to be summoned.

I walked swiftly over to the palette which was serving as his bed. He had not been able to take another step and that had been the best I could come up with. He is laying there, still lost to this world. I had believed him to be drunk and did not have much sympathy, but now as I near him I can smell a curious sweet smell. Exotic! If only I could place it I might be able to find the antidote, but no, I do not know it.

Master!” I shake his shoulder, gently at first, but then harder. I am desperate to get some sort of response from him, but apart from a flicker of his eyelids to prove that he is still alive, I get nothing.

The banging on the door comes as I knew it would. One last glance at the unconscious man, then I rush forward, swing back the door.

The Conjurer is summoned urgently,” the guard outside tells me. “We have an emergency, should you not have noticed.”

The Conjurer is sick. Very sick. I’m sorry but he will be of no help to you this day.” I go to shut the door, fearful of how my words will be received but I do not expect the words that follow.

Well, Carys, as his apprentice, you must come in his place. And there is not a moment to lose.”

I excuse myself to gather my bag, my cloak. I try to control the trembling that is spreading all over my body. I am an apprentice, barely starting my training. How can I possibly be of help?

The Lord is staring out over the mountains when I arrive. “It has started, just as we expected. Look, there they are, heading steadily eastwards towards us. The instant someone caught a glimpse, there was panic. And no amount of calling for calmness is having any effect.”

I watch as the dragons beat their wings, breathe out jets of flame. I watch as trees, caught by the flames, become engulfed and almost instantly turn to ash. “A conjured army?” I ask.

The Lord nods. “As fear spreads, it’s power grows. I need the Conjurer to call up our own army, one that can attack and defeat these.....beasts of the skies.”

I shake my head. “The conjurer will be of no use to you, Sir. He is unconscious, from poison, I believe. I cannot wake him.”

He turns towards me, giving me a stern and solemn look. “Then Carys, as his apprentice the task must fall to you.”

But......” How can I explain to the Lord, my Lord, that this is a task beyond my capabilities. They are not far from us now, soon their jets of deadly flame will reach our furthest out homes.

Remember, Carys, they are just an illusion made real by fear. Summon an army the people will believe in and the dragons will disappear.”

I want to say how easy he makes it sound but I know my place and I must respect my Lord. I take a deep breath, try to calm myself as I rummage around in my bag for my crystal. This will be the focus of my thoughts. If I can just channel enough of them into it we may well have a chance.

What will I summon? I stare at the dragons, their skins varying from red shades to black. Their fire-filled breath is tongues of orange mixed with red. I will go for white, for ice, for coolness to thwart their heat. I shut my eyes for one second, compose a picture in my mind, then open my eyes and stare into my crystal projecting images directly into its heart.

It is hard to concentrate in so much pandemonium. So much fear is driving people from their homes to run in an aimless panic. The guards do what they can to maintain some sort of order but there is still so much distraction I must blind myself to.

I hear a gasp. It seems to go quiet. Am I doing it? Am I creating some sort of opposing force? I cannot look, cannot afford to let my concentration waver from this crystal for even a second. Is there really an army of my own creation heading westward?

There are roars and crashes. A sizzling noise like lightening through a downpour. Murmurs of disbelief, of astonishment. Still I focus, with every piece of my being, mind and body. The effort is draining me; I will not be able to maintain my illusion for much longer. My head is being split apart.....And then the cheer goes up.

I know that I fall to the ground, the crystal still firmly clasped in my hands and then I don’t know anything further until I open my eyes and find myself laying in a bed the comfort of which I could never have imagined.

You did it, Carys!” The Lord is there by my bedside along with my master, the Conjurer. He still looks sick, my master, but at least his eyes now are open.

You beat the fire with an army from ice. White bears that walked on clouds, ice leopards that leaped and savaged those beasts. Once they saw them, the people had hope and the illusion from our enemies lost much of its power.”

Your apprentice-ship is over, young Carys. You will now work by my side, as my equal. We will learn from each other, inspire each other, and together we will strive to keep our people safe.”

Two conjurers to keep us safe? The threat,” the Lord said, “will not prevail.”


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