The Tower of Eletal

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic
When the magick of a an apprentice goes wrong and reveals a long lost tower, the clergy tries to cover it up but with disastrous results.

Submitted: October 12, 2013

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Submitted: October 12, 2013

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The Tower of Eletal

By Phillip J. Boucher

 

The cleric Calif looked at the wizard Lafair in astonishment and asked again.

“Are you sure?”

“As sure as the tricorns bellow at the sun, it's there. I have apprentices guarding it right now and a small crowd of townsfolk are starting to gather round.”

“How was it found?”

“It was uncovered only an hour ago after the rubble was removed from the area.”

“The apprentice has been disciplined for yesterday’s catastrophe?”

“Yes, Holy one. He won't be learning destructive magick again for quite some time.”

Calif nodded his approval and sat back at his desk. He proceeded to use the small torch on his left to light the five candles on the desk, but Lafair waved his hand over them and they instantly burned with bright flames.

“This is a house of worship, not a brothel of manipulation!” Calif said in a tone that put Lafair in his place. He blew out the candles and lit them with the torch. There was a long silence while Lafair waited patiently as Calif said a silent prayer over the Candles of Elements. “Now, this is not a hoax or anything, is it?”

Lafair sat in the chair opposite and leaned forward, fearful that the sound of his words might leave the immediate vicinity of their ears.

“No, your Holiness. It's authentic. We’ve even consulted the,” he looked around to ensure they were alone, “the Scrolls of Vision, and myth has truly become reality!”

“Reality, at times, wizard, should remain myth.” The cleric thought it over for a moment. “However, the damage is done, I suppose.”

“Simply come see it, Holiness. The Clergy will surely find it a testament to the power of the elements.”

“You mean the power to manipulate the elements.”

“Please, just come see it. I was asked by the High Mage to come and get a cleric. You’re the highest one I have access to. Please. Please come and see the tower.”

Calif inhaled deeply, and slowly let his breath out.

“Yes, fine. I’ll come shortly. Go. Tell the Mage I’ll see the tower as he asks.”

“Thank you, your Holiness.”

Lafair made the sign of elements in the air with his hand and left the temple in haste. Calif waited for several moments before he stood up and reluctantly made his way to the Abby. At the Abby door, he paid his respects to the element symbols that had been carved around the door's archway, and the guards, gentle but ugly creatures of a man's soul and a monster's body, let him pass. He walked along the long hallway to another door and opened it slowly.

“Come in, Calif,” a booming voice said.

Calif entered and watched as the Abbyor, the top cleric in the order, stood over a pot of boiling water, the fire underneath red and orange with rage, the wood crackling in the dirt container, and the steam rising from the pot giving the air a scent of meat and herbs, stirring the soup. He looked up from the pot with an angry expression.

“I've heard about the tower!”

“I've just heard. I've been requested to see it. What should I do?”

“Declare it a fake.”

“What if it's not?”

The Abbyor laid the long spoon down on a table and walked over to Calif, who instinctively got on one knee in respect.

“The tower is a myth. The Scrolls are simple stories that only illustrate our pasts, paths, and practices. The Scrolls of Visions are just that; visions. Not things that truly exist.”

“If the tower is real, your Greatness, it may give some credence to the Wizardry and its continued instance that the elements are servants and manipulation is not abhorrence to the natural order of our world.”

“The elements are not servants. They are what everything is made from. They are not our servants. We are their servants. We simply worship their existence, not use them for our gain. We ask for the wind and rain and fire and dirt and spirit to help us live better lives. To provide us what we need. We don’t manipulate them into doing so. We only take what they give us. It’s blasphemy that we even let the Wizardry practice as they do.”

Calif never questioned the Clergy doctrine or beliefs. He simply stated facts. And the fact at the moment was that the tower stood in the middle of the road in front of the wizards’ rectory.

“Go,” the Abbyor said, “and get this over with.”

“As you wish, your Holiness.”

Calif left the Abby and quickly walked over to the rectory, which by now was swarming with townsfolk and wizards in awe of the tower. He, also, looked on in awe. Myth truly had become reality. The Tower of Eletal stood tall and imposing, the height, the shape, the images that graced its exterior, all exactly as described in the Scrolls of Vision.

The wizard Lafair, who had begged Calif to come see the tower, approached him and placed a gentle hand on his shoulder.

“You see? It's not a myth, Holiness. It’s real.”

“It can't be real!” Calif replied and walked over to the makeshift stairs that brought him down into the hole and to the bottom of the tower, with Lafair right behind him. “This must be a trick, an illusion, a wizard's spell.”

He reached out and touched the tower, its polished exterior warm, smooth, and quite comforting to his hand.

 “It exists.”

“Nonsense! You wizards have manipulated the elements to create this imposter of prophesy. It was not buried for eons and discovered by the misspell of an apprentice wizard. You simply created it to justify your magick.”

“Your Holiness, with all due respect to you and the Clergy, we did no such thing. The tip revealed itself when the debris was removed from the apprentice's blast that blew apart this part of the ground. We simply removed the rest to unveil the structure.”

Calif looked up at the top of the tower and followed it down to the base. It was magnificent and beautiful and a joy to behold. And as real as the robes that adorned his body or the Symbol of Elements that hung from his neck, it was not an illusion or wizard's trickery. And that was the problem.

“What's inside?”

“We don't know. No one's gone into it yet.” Lafair looked at the door that still stood unopened. “We're all a bit nervous about what we might find inside.”

“And rightly so,” Calif said calmly, but his heart pounded fast and hard in anticipation of entering. What could lie inside? Could there be nothing? Or could the inside hold the answers to life itself?

Calif lifted the door's latch and it raised easily, the door opening only a fraction of a hair's width. The apprentices and townsfolk who crowded around let out oohs and aahs, not daring to move any closer out of fear, but not wanting to move any further back out of curiosity. He continued to open the door, revealing nothing but darkness within.

“I have light,” Lafair said and then lit what Calif believed to be a candle, which shone a soft glow to the interior.

Both entered and Lafair closed the door behind them. Calif looked back at the door latch falling, and was suddenly surprised to see Lafair without a candle, but instead holding a bright ball of light in one hand, created by his magick. He stood there with a look of pure anger on his face, a look not unnoticed by Lafair. Calif, whose service in the Clergy dictated a firm belief in serving the elements for their own purposes, was now on the side of manipulating the elements in his own service. Without fire, there would be no light, and Calif would not be able to see what was inside the tower. He was not pleased, but again the damage was done. After setting his angry gaze on Lafair's eyes, he turned back and looked around. The entire inside of the tower seemed to be a huge library of books and papers. Except for one wall and the image on it, which caused both men to fall to their knees.

There, as told in the Scrolls of Vision, was the Symbol of Elements above the image of a cleric and wizard. Facing each other, both were waving their hands in the air, and what seemed like a ball of light floated in front of each of them. This was proof that the Clergy and the Wizardry shared the same path, the manipulation of the elements, and the true path of belief. Calif felt fear and rage while Lafair felt pure reverence.

“This is not true. It's blasphemy!”

“It is true and not blasphemy. It's a revelation, Calif! We finally have the answer to our questions.”

“This changes everything,” Calif grunted through clenched teeth.

“It changes only the answer. We both can still worship the elements as before, except instead of berating the manipulation of the elements, the Clergy now simply embraces it.”

Calif raised his eyes up and looked the image again. It hadn't changed and the sweat that had begun too pool on his brow now began to ooze from his entire body. He stood and made his way back to the ladder with Lafair following.

“I must tell the Abbyor about this.”

“And I will tell the Wizardry. There will be much celebration tonight!”

Calif turned, his face full of rage.

“Wrong, wizard! There will be NO celebrations at all!”

#

“What?” The Abbyor screamed at the top of his lungs. “How dare you tell me this thing is real? Your spirit will forever be bound to the element of fire for this! That tower is a fake, a mockery, a conjure of magick! It's not real.”

“But your Holiness, I've seen it with my own eyes. It's a blasphemous reality.”

“You will go back there and you will tell everyone that this thing is a fake, that it doesn't exist, and that it must be reburied and forgotten about.”

“But that would be a lie, Abbyor. We can't lie. We must tell the truth, then bury it and deal with the revelation in the light of the day.”

“We are the Clergy and I am the Abbyor. We lie when we need to, to maintain spiritual belief. To keep the Wizardry at bay. To make sure the Wizardry and the people don't go off on their own paths. The worship of the elements as a servant to them is the only truth and will be the only truth. We allow the elements to exist as they wish. We must accept all that they bring, good or bad. To manipulate them as our will desires means to incur untold evil when the manipulation gets out of control.”

Strange, Calif thought. In all the years as a cleric he never knew of any evil to come out of the wizards’ practices, even when it did get out of control.

“But the tower-”

“I know about the tower! I know! Every Abbyor has known about it. Which is why it was buried a long time ago and forgotten. Now it's been revealed. Revealed by a spell gone wrong exposing what should have been a secret forever! I am ordering you to bury the thing and forget about it.”

“The truth must be revealed even if-”

“The truth must be destroyed!”

Calif was aghast at the Abbyor’s words, and equally so with his face, which was red with rage and Calif was afraid the Abbyor might fall over dead.

“Your Holiness, we shouldn’t be afraid of discovering the truth about ourselves and dealing with it in our-”

Without warning Calif flew backwards onto the floor, pushed by the Abbyor who stormed out of the room in haste. He got up and ran after him, afraid that the Abbyor, in his current state of mind, might do something he would regret. And as Calif exited the Abby and spotted the Abbyor running down the street, his fears were realized. Upon arrival at the tower, the Abbyor screamed at the wizards gathered around it.

“Get me a large swinging hammer now. Somebody!”

They stood around and simply looked at him.

“Get a swinging hammer now! Now!”

“But Abbyor, we have no hammer here,” one said.

“Then make me one.”

The wizards were shocked.

“Don’t stand there you stupid fools. Someone here can make me a swinging hammer and I want it done now!”

One wizard, reluctantly, spoke a spell and in his hand a large swinging hammer appeared. The Abbyor grabbed it and walked over to the tower, ready to swing it.

“No!” Calif shouted.

The Abbyor stopped for a moment and looked into his eyes. Calif could see all reason gone from the holy man’s spirit. The wizards spoke out, telling the Abbyor not to do anything to the tower as it would lead to a terrible end. The Abbyor simply looked into the eyes of everyone there, and they knew that to try to stop him would be both a danger to each one of them and a violation of the office of the Clergy.

The hammer made its contact and a small piece of tower flew off near the crowd. Another swing, and another, and more pieces flew off. The Abbyor was in a frenzy.

“It’s not real, you fools! It’s a trick, an illusion, an affront to our ways and beliefs!” Another swing, and another. “It must be destroyed, reburied. It must!”

With a fury of a madman the Abbyor began to lay destruction to the tower, hitting it with all his might, and one blow seemed to knock off a piece in which a soft glow came from the hole left behind. A bright beam of white and purple light violently blasted out of the hole and flew at Calif, enveloping him and causing him to fall to his knees. The light then continued on to each cleric who had gathered to watch, sending them all to their knees.

“See, Calif? See all of you! See the evil of the tower? You’ll all die knowing what danger this tower presents to our Clergy, to our power and our beliefs. This evil thing must be destroyed as it’s destroying you!”\

The Abbyor continued to smash at the tower as the light that enveloped Calif and the other clerics slowly vanished. Lafair ran over to Calif and bent over, holding the weakened cleric against him. The entire town’s population, clerics, wizards, and citizens now gathered around the tower, watching the crazed Abbyor and helping the fallen clerics to their feet.

“I can cast a spell to stop him,” Lafair whispered.

“No, Lafair. I understand the tower now. I know what the pictures mean and how the Clergy fit into it all. The wizards have been right all along. The Clergy is wrong.”

He stood up and walked over to the Abbyor.

“The tower is not a danger to us, your Holiness. It’s the source of magick for the wizards, and is the source of spirit for our Clergy.”

“You’re wrong!”

“The Clergy was never above the wizards. We were to work together. The wizards revered and used the elements in their magick to make life physically better for all. The Clergy revered and used the elements for spiritual enlightenment. We worked together, Abbyor, not against each other.”

The rage in the Abbyor’s face seethed and he swung the hammer against the tower with all of his might. But before it connected, it disappeared from his hands. He stood there in disbelief. Calif handed the hammer to a wizard. The Abbyor scanned the crowd and screamed.

“You’re evil!” he screamed at Calif. “Evil as you use the elements against me! You all are traitors to the Clergy!” He moved around and pointed to his underlings. “You, and you, and you! All of you! This tower, this, this, piece of lie! This utter evilness!”

Calif came over and talked gently to him.

“It’s over.”

Another cleric spoke up.

“Yes Abbyor, the tower is real, the symbols are real. We see it with our own eyes, we felt it with our own bodies, and we understand it in our own minds.”

“The tower is not a lie,” another said.

“The Clergy lied to us,” one more said.

“The Clergy is your God and you will obey what is told to you!”

Silence fell over the crowd. There was no God that any of them knew, and the use of the word was considered blasphemy according to Clergy doctrine. Calif walked over to the Abbyor and pulled the Symbol of Elements from around the Abbyor’s neck.

“It’s over, Abbyor.”

“How dare you! How dare you touch the Abbyor and take the symbol?”

“I dare on the grounds that the truth about the Clergy and Wizardry is revealed and the Clergy, up to this point, has been nothing but a lie from Abbyor to Abbyor. I’m sorry, Kentami, but you are no longer Abbyor. You may remain in the Clergy, but we all agree that your reign of lies is over. Agreed?”

The throng of Clergy, and some wizards also, nodded their heads in agreement.

“I will not stay in a Clergy that is full of blasphemers and liars!”

“Then you’re free to go about as a citizen. Take care, Kentami, may the elements find you well”

With rage and embarrassment, the former Abbyor stormed off into the crowd. Calif looked at Lafair

“Can the wizards remove the tower from the ground?”

“Yes, we can.”

“Please do so. When done, come see me at the Abby. I have an idea.”

#

The entrance to the town of Eletal where Clergy and Wizardry existed in cooperation and to the benefit of all citizens was comprised of a welcome sign, a donation box for the support of the spiritual and magickal services offered, and a large tower that overlooked the entire city. Accidentally discovered by a wizard’s spell gone wrong and removed from its burial site, the tower housed all the books that not only told the story of how the Clergy and Wizardry began, but the fundamental practices that guided each religion.

In addition, the material that made up the tower was discovered to be the source of power that allowed those so chosen to manipulate the elements at will. So it was fitting that it was placed right at the entrance of the city for all those visitors to see.

In the Abby, the assembly office was dark as the men entered. Calif stood over the desk and paused for a moment, then waved his hand over his candle, which suddenly lit with flame. The six other Clergy reluctantly did the same with their candles and the seven sat down amid the now illuminated office. The Clergy still had a very hard time adapting to their new powers. The rest of the audience entered and assembled into the chairs that awaited them.

“As a member of the seven High Clergy I wish to thank you for attending our first meeting,” Calif said, addressing the audience of clerics and wizards.

“The position of Abbyor,” another began, “no longer exists and all decisions regarding the Clergy’s use of elemental manipulation, adherence to the Rules of the Clergy book as found in the tower, and all services provided to the citizens and visitors of this city shall be done by majority vote of this council.”

Another cleric rose and spoke his part.

“To provide us with guidance in our powers of worship and manipulation of the elements, and our service unto the elements, the wizard Lafair has been appointed consulting wizard to the Clergy.”

Lafair bowed and took his seat next to Calif. Another cleric began his explanation of the new role of the Clergy and the powers they now had, powers that they had had before but were suppressed by the Abby and each Abbyor until the powers no longer existed. While he spoke, Calif and Lafair whispered between themselves.

“Thank you, Lafair, for helping me create this new Clergy.”

“No thanks needed, Calif. The tower’s discovery and its depiction of the Clergy using magick, was revealed, the truth was told, and the books were found. Prophecy came true. It took a cleric not blinded by power and control to see that.”

“Still, your help was beneficial.”

“No. Our cooperation between our two religions is beneficial for everyone.”

“So it is, wizard.”

Calif waved his hand and Lafair’s candle lit. He put his hand gently on Lafair’s arm for a moment, and then both men turned their attention to the speaking cleric. Calif feared the elements and the control of them no more.

The End


© Copyright 2019 PhillipJBoucher. All rights reserved.

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