Protectorates of Nimbus: Veroy, Machina Astartes

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic
A young boy who is neglected for his strange powers.

Submitted: June 27, 2015

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Submitted: June 27, 2015

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Freak! Sorcerer! Vile magic-user!”

These spiteful words are what they use to define who I am.

A strange boy, they said. Putrid magic, they cried. I just shrug it all off.  Never minding what blatant words they throw at me.

As I lie on my bed, pondering my ever-troubled mind as to why I was gifted… No, cursed. This curse of mine is the cause of my loneliness. I am unable to play with other children due to this…curse. Mothers draw their children away from me. Calling me a monster. A dangerous child.

Heh.

I grit my teeth as I sat up on my bed.

I let out a sigh, bringing my left hand to the nape of my neck, rubbing it.

I leaned towards the small pile of metallic scraps placed onto the foot of my bed, placing my hand on top of it, muttering gibberish that I hear from my mother.

A flash of bright light filled the room, I blinked. I withdrew my hand to my chest as the metallic scraps began to move and form a miniature torso. More scraps attached itself onto the torso, forming a pair of legs and arms. Its head soon assembled.

I pushed my finger against its chest. It stumbled and began to move. It brought its hands close to its face, looking at them. It soon shifts its non-existent eyes to me. It walks towards me, but as it took a step, it breaks apart and returns to being a lifeless, metallic pile of spare parts.

Aye, I am a dangerous child indeed.

I sighed as I sat up straight once again. Perhaps I am not that strong or that is the full extent of my “gift.” Giving life to shambling machines for a meager couple of seconds.

I shift my legs, as my feet touches the floor I stood up. I gait to the door, overhearing the cheerful laughter of my parents.

I smile. For they are the only friends that I could have. My father and my mother.

I placed my left hand onto the knob, turning it as I pull. I step outside, closing the door behind me.

“Ah, Veroy! My boy!” My father exclaims, donning his bright smile. 
“Hi dear. Did you have a nice rest?” My mother says as she worked in the kitchen.
“Yes.” I eagerly replied. 

I walk to the chair in front of the one my father is sitting on.

I silently sat as I slightly bow my head.

“Son, is there something troubling you?” My father asks, leaning his face close to mine.
I look up to my father, flashing a quick smile, hastily shaking my head. “None at all, father.”
“Aventus!” My mother yells.
“Yes, dear?” My father replies as his head swoons to the right. 

“Could you please purchase pork at the market? It seems we had run short of it.”

“Alright.” My father stood up, reaching for his coin purse on the table in front of me.

He grasps it, shoving it into his pocket. He then gazes at me.

“Would you like to accompany me?” He says.

I look up to him, smiling. “Yes. I would like that.”

“Come, let us depart.” He turns his back against me and walks towards the door.

I soon follow.

He opens the door, stepping outside. I followed, closing the door behind me.

I rushed to his side.

I walk at the same pace as he is, keeping me eyes down the path of cobblestone.

“Son, I rarely ever see you play with other children. What’s the matter?”

I bring my left hand to the collar of my coat, I slightly grip it as I look to the right. “Nothing, father. I just dislike playing with others.”

“Ah, I see.” He says as the tapping of his boots seem to follow a rhythm.

Silence broke between us. Though there are some common rabble amongst the settlers in the kingdom.

Rumors and gossip about more techno-mages hidden in this kingdom, Ire.

Ire was ruled by a benevolent king in the old days. Where chaos always broke out among the three kingdoms. Lorath, Preston, and Ire.

With Lorath’s military prowess, the king’s defeat is assured. To combat this threat, he formed the Machina Astartes. A council of techno-mages that mastered the spells of assembling machines and giving life to them from just a pile of spare parts and scraps with a flick of a finger.

As the kingdom of Preston was on the brink of defeat, the king of Ire himself came to aid the failing empire. Crazy, but true. He wished for peace between the three kingdoms. He arrived with his army of ten thousand men, along with one hundred techno-mages.

He led the charge down the tide of Lorath soldiers, shouting his battle cry. The soldiers fought bravely, never minding the thought that they were outnumbered three-to-one. But that quickly changed as the techno-mages began to conjure an army of machines. They had a wagon of scraps and spare parts to provide the king’s techno-mages.

The machines had metallic spears. Their build resembles a skeleton. They were highly volatile and very powerful. An army of roughly three hundred machines lunged at the army of Lorath. The soldiers’ hearts were filled with fear as they battled an unbeatable enemy. As they tried to swing a sword at them, it merely scratched the metallic warriors.

With each thrust of the machine’s spear, it skewers three warriors.

The battle ends as the day broke. The soldiers of both Preston and Ire cheered as the war ended. The kings of both kingdoms shook each other’s hands. Declaring that they are no longer at war.

And with that, the great war of Nimbus ended.

As the soldiers returned to the kingdom, they were welcomed as heroes. Especially the techno-mages. They were worshipped. Some viewed them as gods for their immense power. But the order was abolished by an uprising of one man. He viewed the order as a daemonic cult, for they blinded the populace to whom is the real God. The people of Ire rallied against the techno-mages.

They were afraid to conjure machines to fend off this riot. Instead, they were forced out. Scattered and no where to go, some died from venturing to treacherous areas. And without scraps or spare parts, they were unable to defend themselves. And with that, the order was quickly forgotten and the techno-mages subsided along with the king.

Ire is now ruled by the very man who overthrew the techno-magi and he is as vile as a snake. He is corrupted and malevolent. Cruel and mad with power to the point of believing that he is the God himself. How ironic.

His name is Ashram and he and his legion of Chosen despises the techno-magi. They arrested each and any of the techno-magi that has gone into hiding in the suburbs of the kingdom.

At the least, that’s what they thought.

“Father,” I look up at him. “Am I… Different?”

“Of course, you are my Veroy! Aventus’ right hand man!” He says as he lets out a hearty chuckle.

“Then… Why are the other kids afraid of me?”

He lets out a sigh. He kneels, facing me as he smiles. “Son,” he says as he fixes my collar. “Be that as it may. They are afraid of you for you are different… You are unique! You are strong. Your talents and your heart are your arsenal to become much more powerful. Show them that you are better than them. That you are superior and they are weak unlike you. Don’t let them tell otherwise, alright?”

I slowly nodded.

He smiles and stands up and we proceed to walk.

As we arrive at the market, the stalls are bristling with customers. Rabble about prices and talks about common political matters, private gossip, somewhat the same talks that you’ll hear in the outskirts of the kingdom.

A bald man, somewhat at an average height of six feet approaches us. He dons a blue tunic and brown, ragged pants.

He has a strange marking on his right hand, resembling a star. Odd, for my father bears the same symbol as well.

“Ave.” The man says.

“Ave, brother Lain.” My father replies as they lock their hands and pull each other, bumping their shoulders from one another.

The man smirks and looks at me.

“Is that your son?”

“Aye, ‘tis. His name is Veroy.”

I shyly wave my right hand at the man.

He smiles as he brings his right hand onto my head, ruffling my hair.

“I used to have hair, like yours, it was fluffy.”

I could not help but smirk.

His face filled with glee quickly turned into a face with a looming dread as he switches his gaze to my father.

“The people says that there are techno-mages still skulking about in the kingdom.”

“Aye..,” my father looks at me. “That, I heard.”

“Dead myths and legends ought to stay dead.”

“Right.”

My father turns his gaze to the man. “Well, it was nice meeting you again. Old friend.”

“Yes, yes. I say the same to you,” The man looks at me. “It was nice meeting you too, Veroy.”

I smile slyly as I watch the man walk past by us.

My father looks at me, with a troubled face. He shook his head at me.

We continue to walk deeper into the market. The stench is awful. I scrunch my nose as I squint my eyes, barely breathing to avoid smelling the strong, rotting scent that clouds this place.

“Father, are you sure we are in the right place?”

“Yes. There’s the meat market.” He points to the stall in front of us.  “Keep close to me, alright?”

He drops his arm as we walk closer to the stall. As we arrive, my father and the merchant engage in the rambling talk of trade.

I have no interest in such matters, and so I survey the area around us. There are less people here. Might I also add that it is less lively in here.

I return my gaze to my father as he finishes up the trade.

He looks down at me, smiling. “Shall we go back to your mother?”

“Yes!” I say eagerly as I smile at him back.

He turns around, proceeding to walk. I scuttle to his side.

We emerge from the sea of people. We continue to walk down the road.

I hear footsteps behind us. I peered over my shoulder, only to see three hooded men following us. They all bear the same mark of a star.

I slowly tug on my father’s sleeve. “Father, someone’s following us…”

“I know. Go home Veroy. I’ll catch up with you.”

“But-“

“Go home.”

He stops. I look at him, frowning. I proceed to walk, reluctant to look back.

I spot two barrels next to the wall. Perfect.

“I’ll watch them from here.” I whisper to myself.

I scurry behind the barrel, crouching. I peek over the barrel, watching the men and my father.

My father turns to face the men. “What do you need, friends?”

“We heard that a techno-mage is inside the comforts of your home, brother Aventus.” The man in the middle says.

“Techno-mage? I believe you are mistaken.”

“You do know that the Cult of Ashram loathes the techno-mages.”

“I do and I am full aware what the consequences will be for helping one of them.”

“That is good.” The hooded man peers over my father’s shoulder.

I crouch as much as I can, thinking that he might’ve seen me. He couldn’t had seen me, could he?

I hear the man’s voice. “Who is the child behind the barrels?”

“Huh? I know not what you are talking about.”

“Hmm. Perhaps my eyes deceive me. Very well, we shall depart. Fare thee well, brother Aventus.”

“Aye. May Ashram look after you in your journeys.”

I overhear footsteps fading slowly. While another rhythm of footsteps encroach upon my position.

“Veroy, what do you think you’re doing?!”

I jolt up, standing firmly as I lock my hands together, twiddling with my fingers. “I… I’m sorry father.”

My father sighs. “It’s alright.”

He reaches for my head and gives my hair a light ruffling.

“Come, let us return home.”

I grasp his warm hand as we proceed to walk home.

I look up to the sky as it is beautifully engulfed in an amber color. I exhale, basking in the awe-inspiring art of nature.

My father smirks. “Do you want to watch the sun go down in our garden?”

My eyes sparkle as I look at him. “Yes!” I exclaim in excitement and glee, hopping in exhilaration.

“Alright, alright.” He says, smiling.

We arrive at our doorstep. My father puts his hand on the knob, turning it. He pushes the door, stepping inside. I follow, closing the door behind me.

“Tara! I got the pork!” He shouts.

“Good! Just hand it over darling.”

“Alright.”

My mother emerges from the kitchen, tapping the threshold with her finger.

“Here ya’ go.” My father says as he hands the plastic bag of pork over to her.

I lean my back against the concrete wall.

My father walks towards me. “Shall we?”

I smile. “Yes!”

He opens the door, stepping outside. I gait behind him. As usual, closing the door behind me.

He sits near the flower gardens. He peers over his shoulder. “Sit beside me, son.”

I amble towards his side, smiling as I sit down next to him. I look up to the orange sky. And so did he. It’s moments like these that make me feel happy. As if life is not all what it seems. I lay my head against my father’s shoulder, looking up to the sky as the sun sinks down at the horizon. It’s a marvelous spectacle, and I do not want it to end.

“Are you enjoying it?” My father says.

“Very.” I reply, as my eyes are still filled with bliss and awe.

He smirks as he puts his hand on my head.

“We better get inside.” He says as he stands up.

“Mhm.” I say as I stood.

I stop in front of the threshold for I hear rustling in the nearby bush of our garden.

I tug on my father’s shirt. “Father… There’s someone hiding in the bush.”

My father stops and peers over his shoulder. “Huh?”

He turns, panning his head across the garden. “I don’t see anyone or anything. Nor do I hear anything.”

Hmm… Perhaps it was just in my head. But I swear I heard something.

“Perhaps you are just hungry. Come, I think your mother had prepared dinner already.” He said, turning his back to me.

I step inside.

I sit on a chair in front of a table. A plate is laid out in front of me.

The plate has a marking of a shield with a tower of some sort embedded on the center of it.

My father sits on a chair on the other end of the table from where I am sitting on.

“Eat up! I prepared it with the love I usually prepare our meals with.” My mother lays the plates of food in the middle of the table.

I held the spoon and fork, eager to satiate my hunger.

I reached for the grilled pork in front of me and stabbed it with my fork. I brought it to my plate, placing it on the top edge of my plate.

Excited to eat, a knock resonates throughout the hall. The knock originates from the front door of our house.

“I’ll get it.” I said, dropping my spoon and fork onto the plate.

“No, no. You sit there and eat. I’ll answer the door.” My mother hastily walked to the door.

Once again, I held the spoon and fork. I scooped a spoonful of rice. I opened my mouth and placed the spoon inside of my mouth.

Minutes later, my mother failed to return. Where must she be?

“Father, mother hasn’t returned yet.” I said.

“I know. I’ll go and check.”

He rose from his chair and walked to the hall towards the front door.

Nevertheless, I followed. I rose from the chair and walked behind him.

“Tara? Honey? Are you there?” My father yells.

I hear groaning, and moans of someone who is in pain as I approach the door closer.

“Tara? Tara!” My father yells as he rushes to my mother, sitting against the wall with a bloodied chest.
My father held her hand, clutching it tightly to his chest.

“Who did this to you?!” His voice was trembling. He was on the verge of weeping as he tightens his clutch on my mother’s hand.

My mother is at loss of words. Her voice fails to emerge from her mouth.

I stood, watching in shock. My emotions were overwhelming. My mind was in a complete cluster of madness, hate, despair, and grief. A tear slid down my cheek. I felt numb. I felt ethereal. I fell to my knees, slowly bringing my hands to my face that is full of tears. In all happened in an instant. Eight years of joy and excitement that was brought upon the unity of my family, all taken away from me in an instant.

Three figures emerge from the mist at our doorstep. They were all hooded, bearing the marking of a star on their hands. The man on the middle raised his arm, pointing at my father.

“You deceived us, brother Aventus.” His hoarse voice rasps in my ears, resembling that of a knife being sharpened through a grindstone.

My father raises his head, tears sliding on his cheeks. His mind, clouded with anger and rage. His thoughts are true, his instinct runs rampant throughout his head. He rose from his knees, glaring at the men as he raises his arm, his aura transforms into to a dark malice of which I have not experienced before. He drew his finger to the foes before him.

With all the metallic items in the house, the house is as if it was coming to life! I nervously stepped back, not wanting to leave my father behind, I watched him as all of the metals flew to him. With strange magic, he bent the metals to his will. Bonding all of them together as if it was entirely made out of liquid.

The blob of metal grew larger and larger and the house began to shake! My father snaps his finger and the blob jolted to him, consuming him. He then emerges later. As a metallic golem with bright, blue glowing eyes. He was clasped into an armor of which made me paralyzed in awe as I basked upon its regal features. The shoulder pads protruded spikes. And its helm has a crown of some sort on it. I know now that this is no longer my father.

The men behind the hooded man began to stagger and tremble before the sight of the great metallic stature as it formed a sharp lance on its right arm.

“Do not fear it! For it is merely a Guardian. A techno-magi’s protector from death.” The hooded man said.

My eyes widened as I hear it. I realize that I did not have a father all along! It’s a mere product of magic! The metallic guardian stances itself, preparing to pounce at its enemies. The men stepped back as they drew their swords and staffs. Fire and ice emanates from the staffs, giving light to the night.

“But Praetor! How could this be?! The techno-magi is slain!” A man whose voice is trembling shouts.
“It must be protecting another one. How stupid of us to be so blinded as to why we have not sensed the creature’s magical power!” The hooded man says.

The silver creature pounces. Eviscerating three of them in a flurry of slashes. As it walks towards the rest, its blood-stained body shines from the light of the moon. The hooded man shouts, thrusting his sword towards the walking golem. As the men charges towards the glistening figure that represents death, they, themselves began to conjure their own magic. They hurled fireballs towards it, attempting to melt the metal. But alas, they failed. They tried to freeze it. They failed yet again.

It began to jog to them, bringing the blade closer to its chest. As it encroaches upon them, it begins to sprint. With a quick, silver glim the men fell one by one to its waltz of death. Crimson fills the field, replacing the once, verdant garden. As all of the hooded man’s grunts fell, he cowers behind his sword, holding the hilt against his chest as he screams to the walking juggernaut.

“Die!” He shouts with a swing of a sword.

The Guardian catches the blade with its left hand, gripping it. It reforms its right hand, snatching the sword from the man’s hands. It held the hilt of the sword tightly with its right hand. It brings the sword to its face, and with a quick slash, the man’s head rolled to the floor with its face stuck in horror and despair.

As the short battle ended. The Guardian drops the sword and glances at me. It slowly walks towards me, looking down at me. It brings its left hand to the top of my head, patting it. Similar to the way it patted me when it was still in the form of my father.

It began to speak, though it spoke through a language called Vekuyarhi which only the techno-magi could understand. Its voice was deep, and it echoed inside its suit.

“Yuis nudhas durn na dhed irrui rhuirn ru du Tirrsa eln shuail dha faufra whu wairhar du disl dhair sisran wusrn aildu e wusrn llirr ull faeidirr eln heffailarr.”

I smile. As I understood some of those words. Perhaps it is for the betterment of this world as to join the guild of which that seeks a new, and peaceful world. The Guardian extends its hand to me. I laid the palm of my hand onto it. It gently grasps my hand. As I took a quick glance at my mother’s body, she seemed to be smiling peacefully. As me and the Guardian began to embark upon a journey towards the kingdom of Tyre, I cannot help but to think that a new chapter of my life begins. And this chapter shall be exciting and perilous.

Ah. I am eager to discover what the future has in store for me. And perhaps, it shall be one that many-a-tale shall be told for generations to come.


© Copyright 2019 Lauren I. M.. All rights reserved.

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