Outcast

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 2 (v.1) - The Battle for Khan-Shaeros

Submitted: August 07, 2018

Reads: 51

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Submitted: August 07, 2018

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The fighting had spread rapidly throughout the capital. Once word spread of the Northerner's betrayal, the entire city took up arms to repel the assault. Khan-Shaeros was the hub of Elven civilization and contained the most powerful mages in all of Talahm, but for all their worth, the battle had quickly turned South. The Northerners had dabbled in forbidden magic that could tear away their manalinks. With this Dark Auramancy, the Northerners had broken the defender's lines. All that stood between them and the council were a few dozen guardsmen and the last of the Royal Court Mages.

 

Aglaron crouched behind an overturned cart as a volley of arrows hummed past. He glanced around his cover and marked his target. A Northerner up high on a terrace across the way was firing down on their position. Aglaron leaned back and loosed his arrow. The missile thudded soundly into the Elf's chest before he careened over the edge.

 

What remained of the guardsmen and the Royal Court had regrouped around the council hall to fend off the attackers. Once the battle had begun in full, Northerners in full battle plate had stormed the gates and took control of the city. Trapped within the walls of Kahn-Shaeros, Aglaron's men made their stand. They all knew that if the Heirophant fell, nothing would stop the invasion.

 

Fire erupted across the plaza as one of the Court Mages engulfed a group of Northerners in flames. The blaze lit up the darkened battlefield in all its gruesome reality. Bodies lay charred and cut to pieces throughout the streets. Some Elves were so burnt they were unrecognizable; but those Aglaron did recognize brought far more horror than the rest of the bloody assault. Calden, Raedal, Torfalas, Barachir; brothers and sisters he'd grown up and trained beside. Their faces stared at him with cold and lifeless eyes. Aglaron choked back tears of sorrow and rage as he fought through the pain.

 

A massive explosion erupted from a building across the way. The Court Mages rushed across the plaza and summoned forth a wave of water. The tidal flow slowed the growing inferno and washed away many of the attackers. Fear grew in Aglaron's heart when a cloaked figure appeared from the burning building. The water and flames parted as he approached, giving an air of intimidation to the hidden enemy. Undeterred by his theatrical entrance, the Court Mages focused their energies in a flurry of elemental attacks. The air parted before him; the water rolled off his cloak; the fire disapated with a single breath; and the stone crumbled to dust at his feet.

 

The cloaked figure laughed menacingly and spoke in a deep, malevolent tone. "Pathetic fools, you call yourselves mages yet you limit your own power. Allow me to educate you on true power."

 

With a flick of his wrist, he lifted one of the mages high into the air. The Elf screamed in pain as his body was folded and warped into unnatural shapes. The horrific display lasted only a few moments before the cloaked figure lowered his hand and the broken body dropped lifeless to the stone. The other Court Mages backed away hesitantly. The cloaked figure smiled and pointed towards the council hall. His finger was blackened like burnt wood and it ended in a long and sharpened claw. "If you'll excuse me, I have a meeting with the pitiful creature you worship as a demigod."

 

Without a word, the mages launched bolt after bolt of magical energy at the cloaked foe. Aglaron watched in horror as his brothers and sisters were cut down by the powerful mage. The cloaked figure turned towards Aglaron. He felt a deep sense of dread as the creature's eyes pierced his very soul. Though every inch of his body was screaming to run, he was rooted to the spot. The bodies of the court mages and council guard still hissed with dark energies as the creature approached him.

 

"What have we here? Are you some kind of lone hero? Do you intend to strike me down with your 'blessed sword'?"
Aglaron watched as the figure approached him with fear coursing in his veins. The cloaked figure's face became visible as he came closer. It was in fact an Elf, but something was very wrong with him. His eyes were a deep red rather than the stark blue of all other Elves. His skin was the color of ash and tar, but split and cracked like the bark of a tree. He leaned close to Aglaron and inhaled deeply before pulling away and smiling to reveal pointed teeth. "You're no hero. You're just a coward like the others."

 

Aglaron watched the terrifying Elf ascend the steps of the council hall and stand before the great doors. The enchanted doors gave like rotten driftwood against his power. Within minutes of entering the sanctum of the elder council, screams erupted from deep inside. Aglaron's blood ran cold upon hearing the nightmarish cries. Everything he was sworn to protect was gone; all of it burned to ash before his eyes. 

 

Without warning, an intense pain burned through his mind. The air was taken from his lungs and the ground and sky melted together. A single, powerful image clung to his vision. His son fleeing towards the docks. The pain grew in intensity as the image faded. For a single moment, a comforting aura surrounded Aglaron. The pain had vanished and a sense of calm bathed his body and mind, freeing him of the fear that had rooted his feet. The Elven warrior collapsed to the ground and embraced the comforting aura. Though he begged for the aura to remain, it slowly drifted away, leaving him cold and alone. No words escaped his mouth, for none were needed. Aglaron knew in his heart that Faena was gone. Instead, a powerful cry of agony reaching from deep within him echoed throughout the city. 

 

The Northern warriors surrounding the plaza moved to put an end to his cries, but Aglaron was not ready to die. Energy erupted from his body, sending dozens of the Elves flying. Aglaron staggered to his feet and wiped the blood from his nose. It was time to unleash the rage he'd locked away. Power surged through his body as he opened his mind to the manalink he shared with the earth. Many of the Northerners nocked arrows to their bows, but the missiles fell short of the bloodied warrior. Aglaron roared in anger and threw ropes of energy forth from his hands. The bright whips tore through the Elves with ease, leaving ashes where they had stood. More of the Northerners rushed into the plaza to put him down. Aglaron turned to face them and replied in kind. No mercy, no prisoners, and no survivors.

 

Noise from within the council hall caught the enraged Elf's attention as the cloaked figure emerged with a roar. He screamed in a deep and monstrous voice that seemed to come from everywhere and nowhere at once. "Where is he?!?"

 

Aglaron screamed in rage and flung the energy whips towards the cloaked Elf. The powerful magic tore through the columns with ease, bringing the front of the hall crashing down. The shrouded Elf caught the pieces above him and flung them back at Aglaron. With precision born of hatred, he cut the debris apart and continued his attacks. One whip came close and nearly struck the Elf, but something Aglaron did not expect stopped him in his tracks. The mage had caught the whip! The sorcerer summoned a whip of his own and cracked it against the vibrant energy he gripped tightly within his hand. The glowing whip hissed out of existence with an explosive crack.

 

The Elf cackled from beneath his hood. Aglaron looked on in terror as he descended the steps and approached him. He threw everything he had at the dangerous mage. Every spell, every blast of energy, every elemental power he could think of; all faded as they struck him. The Elf closed the distance between them and grabbed Aglaron by the throat. He struggled for breath as he was lifted from his feet. "You've angered me for the last time, guardsmen. Your armies fell before me, your mages cowered at my sight, and your demigod will lay in chains at my feet, yet you persist. I admire your courage, but it is false bravado born of rage and nothing more. I can see inside your mind Aglaron, and I know what unlocked the powers you so feebly tried to face me with. They're both dead because you couldn't protect them. You, a sworn protector of the Elves, failed in your sacred duty. Now you will die as they did, screaming!"

 

Aglaron was thrown far across the plaza. His body crashed against the side of a building, shattering many of his bones before he dropped hard to the street below. Aglaron groaned weakly as his vision faded. A powerful burning surged from his chest and kept him conscious. His head lifted weakly to find he was impaled on the broken post of a cart. Blood bubbled from the wound and rolled off his sides to drip down the cart's edges. The light faded and his body grew cold as he overheard the sorcerer's parting orders. "Find the Wizard! I want him alive!" Aglaron slipped into darkness and gave in to the peaceful sleep...


© Copyright 2019 Sullivan Williams. All rights reserved.

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