|Protectors of Sodamonia
Author: Queen of the Dormice PM
Chaos has begun to let loose in the magical lands of Sodamonia as an evil group known as the Panther Organization rises to power. Only a sorceress, two shapeshifters, and a rogue warrior can discover their ultimate goal and stop them in the quest of a lifetime. Rated T for language.Rated: Fiction T - English - Fantasy/Adventure - Chapters: 6 - Words: 28,597 - Reviews: 6 - Favs: 1 - Updated: 05-15-13 - Published: 01-02-13 - id: 3088428
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
NOTICE!: Herp a derp derp. I accidentally copied chapter 3 and put it as chapter 4, too. XP So here is the REAL chapter 4. Enjoy! :3
Me: Yay! Happy New Year! XD
Me: Could you at least pretend to be excited? It's a whole new year for crying out loud! XD
Scar: What's the point? This year will be the same as the last. :/
Me: It's just the concept, so just smile or something. :P
Scar: Like this?
Me: Um... No. That's a scowl. :/
Me: Whoa. How can you make your face do that? 0.0
Scar: I'll take that as a no. -.-"
DISHCLAIMAH!: I own the whole world! Mwahahahaha! XD ... Ok. Maybe just the one in this story. But I think it'd be freakin' awesome if one of you readers wrote a fanfiction on this... :P
Chapter 4: A Prophesy Revealed
The night following her training Scar sat on the a few feet from the fire pit as Byron roasted some rats he had managed to catch on a stick over the flames. She stared into the embers lost in thought, her mind traveling into an empty void. The only noises to be heard were the crickets and the occasional huff of the nearly-asleep Genevieve who was lying a few meters away in the darkness.
Finally Byron pulled the meat he'd been cooking away from the fire and turned towards Scar. "Dinner's ready!" he announced jovially and began to try to take the rats off the stick. He burned his fingers the first few times he tried to get them off, letting out a few sounds of pain as he did. With a wave of her hand, Scar sent a freezing breeze to cool the hot meat, and so the old man easily slid off a rat to offer it to her.
"Here you go," he said as she reached for it absentmindedly. She took a bite into the over-cooked meat, savoring its flavor before swallowing. Yet she still continued to stare into the flames as if she were in her own little world.
"So… You've been awfully quiet. What are you thinking about?" Byron asked her as he sat next to her to start devouring his own rat.
Scar moved her gaze from the fire to the ground. "Nothing," she stated emotionlessly. She was still obviously bothered by something.
"Come on," he pushed on through mouthfuls of meat, "What's eating at you?"
"Nothing," Scar responded a second time.
"Scar, what's troubling you?" Byron sounded genuinely concerned for her.
Scar stood up angrily, throwing her rat to the dirt. "Nothing! I told already! Nothing is wrong!" The fire pit flared with every word she spat at him. The two were silent as they stared at each other almost in a stand-off. They remained like this for what seemed like hours, the tension still building.
Scar broke the silent battle between them when she plopped back down with tears in her eyes. "I'm sorry," she said quietly, "It's just… I wasn't strong enough."
"Strong enough to do what?"
"To save my people from those hooded fiends." A single, frustrated tear fell down her cheek. "It's all my fault. I should've stayed and fought. I should've given my life to defend the villagers, to defend Martwen and Baba. It was my duty as the sorceress of Monataro, and I've failed."
"No, you haven't. You did what you could. There was no way you could have beaten them. They were far too powerful. You would've died in vain to have stayed, and that would have been exactly what they had wanted," he spoke softly, trying his best to be sympathetic.
"Who was it?" she asked, her voice full of a quiet rage, "Who was it that murdered my people?"
Byron sighed, and he tossed his mostly eaten rat aside. "They call themselves the Panther Organization."
"I heard them say that," the sorceress interrupted him, "The Panthers. They invited my teacher to be a part of them just before..." She paused, not wanting to finish her sentence, yet she continued anyways. "Before they killed her."
The old man nodded. "The Panthers are a secret society of sorcerers and sorceresses. Not much is known of them. Even the spirits are baffled by what their purpose is, yet they have told me a few things that they know in the stars. These Panthers only accept the strongest magic-wielders to their group, and they are supposedly led by one of the greatest sorcerer of all time. Master Feng."
"Back in the attack of my village there was an albino. He was the one who murdered my master. Is he this Feng you speak of?"
Byron shook his head, his expression growing sad. "No. Who you met was Elias. He's one of Feng's right-hand men. He's the head-warrior of the Shadows. The Shadows are the ones who do all of the organization's dirty work. They're the ones who ransacked Monataro. Elias is almost as power-hungry as Feng, but I believe he has some good in him."
"Why so positive? Have you met him or something?" Scar interjected, still very interested in what the old man is saying.
"I should know him. Elias is my son," Byron stated, his eyes holding a reminiscent sorrow.
"Your son?" the sorceress exclaimed, not believing what she had just heard.
Byron nodded again. "Yes. We used to live in Lumiar. Just the two of us. His mother died in bed with a fever when he was merely a baby. He had a lot of issues as a child, with him being an albino and all. The other schoolchildren made fun of him and bullied him whenever they could. I don't remember Elias having any friends. I tried to teach him that being different wasn't bad, but he didn't listen. He was far too stubborn. He ran away from home when he was fifteen. Didn't leave a note or anything. He just left."
By this point in the story, the old man was on the verge of tears. "He was all I had. Of course I crawled into a bottle for a few years before I received a sign from the spirits one night. That was the first time I was able to read the stars. The spirits told me I had to leave Lumiar, warning me that something terrible was coming. Luckily, I had enough sense and was adequately sober to travel to a neighboring village. I don't remember the name of it, but it definitely wasn't Monataro. Anyways, I came back the next day to retrieve my things, but when I got to where my home was supposed to be, the entire building had been burned to the ground. It was there I met Elias again. He had been waiting for me with the Shadows to return and finish me off. I tried so hard to plead him to come back to me, yet my efforts were of no use; he was far too devoted to Feng. I ended up barely escaping with my life, and so I ran away to where no one would find me. Eventually I discovered Yengi Fortress. It was the perfect place to spend the rest of my days in solitude." He smiled weakly as he finished speaking.
"Wow," Scar commented, "That's harsh."
Byron shrugged. "No more harsh than yours."
"How would you know?" the sorceress asked, trying her hardest not to sound defensive.
"I just have a feeling. Do you wish to share?" He gazed at her with his intense, blue eyes in hopes she would reveal something about herself. He truly adored hearing of people's pasts, especially since the last visitor who had stumbled upon his fortress years ago was a young traveler who was completely mute.
"Nah. Nothing interesting has happened to me besides the last few days," Scar blew off the question.
"Are you sure?" Byron asked.
Scar thought about it before deciding to talk. "Well, I never did get to know anything about my mother. She died in childbirth. I almost died then, too. But Baba had been the one delivering me and saved my life. She's the one who looked after me when my dad disappeared when I was about nine years old. He was taking a cart filled with wheat to sell in the big markets of Simbasa, yet he didn't come back. We sent out at least half a dozen search parties to bring him home, but they found nothing. They assumed that he had been killed by some sort of animal or a band of thugs. But it's ok. I don't remember too much of him, so I don't really think of him at all. It's like he never existed."
"So you're an orphan?" the old man questioned as she paused.
"I mean, I guess so, but not really. Baba was like my mom and dad put into one person. I think she did a better job raising me than my real parents ever could. After all, they couldn't teach me sorcery. When Baba found out from the spirits that I had the potential to be a sorceress, we began training right away," Scar said, a cheery expression on her face as she thought of her history.
"That certainly seems like a good life, though full of hardship," Byron stated.
Scar yawned. "Yeah. Well, I'm tired. I'm going to go hit the hay."
"Me too," the old man stretched out his arms, showing even more of his ribs as he arched his back. "Good night." He lied down on his back while Scar put out the fire with her magic. She then scooted a meter or so away from him to curl into a fetal position to prepare for slumber.
"Wait! What's that?" Byron interrupted her attempt at getting some sleep, his eyes scanning over the night sky.
"What?" Scar sat up and looked at him, befuddled.
"The stars! They're saying something!" He then mumbled a few unintelligible phrases to himself, his eyes growing larger and larger with every passing moment.
"What are they saying?" the sorceress asked excitedly.
"Shhh! Give me a minute!" They sat in silence for everlasting minutes as Byron read the patterns in the cosmic universe. Scar kept her gaze on the stars as if she too were trying to understand the readings, not that there was any way she could. Instead all she noticed was the way the little balls of light twinkle, the way they contrasted against the blackness of the universe. She remembered back to stargazing with Baba. The elderly woman had taught Scar a whole bunch of the constellations: Grogan the flautist, Mundowo the great tiger, Persanan the butterfly queen, and so many more the sorceress had forgotten most of them.
Finally, Byron let his vision fall down to the sorceress sitting eagerly in front of him. "Boy, do the spirits have a lot in store for you," he stated, staring at her with an astounded glint in his eyes.
Scar tilted her head in confusion. "What do you mean?"
He looked back up to the skies like he was double checking to make sure he'd gotten his facts straight before turning towards her again. "The spirits tell me you are a part of the Great Prophecy."
"A prophecy?" The sorceress jumped at the unexpected answer.
Byron closed his eyes and nodded, his bluish hair glowing in the moonlight. "You are a part of the Great Prophecy. They've brought it up quite often, they have," he stated plainly while pointing to the stars.
"What is this Great Prophecy?" Scar questioned.
The old man sighed before continuing, "Long ago, far before my time, it was foreseen by the spirits that something big and bad and powerful would be coming to these lands of Sodamonia. Yet there was prophesied to be three heroes who would stop the evil and save the world. You know, the typical mystical stuff. Anyways, the spirits believe you are the one of the heroes who will fulfill this duty. Scar, it is your destiny to find the other two and defeat this Panther Organization."
"Panther Organization? You didn't say anything about this Great Prophecy having anything to do with the Panthers!" she exclaimed.
"Well," Byron looked at her embarrassedly, "The spirits kindly alerted me of this just now. They're full of surprises, you know."
Scar's voice lowered, her expression murderous. "I can take on the Panthers by myself. I don't need anyone else. And I'm sorry Byron, but Elias is going down, too. He will pay dearly for what he did to the people I cared for. I will make sure they all do." A frightened look came over Byron's face at her dark words.
"No no no!" he yelled at her. "You mustn't! Remember what they did to you back in Monataro? There's no way you'd win, not without help!"
Scar thought back to Baba's final words:
'You will do great things, but never alone.'
She took in a deep breath before relaxing her body, the wise words of her teacher running through her mind over and over. "Fine. I'll do what this stupid prophecy says. I'll do it the spirits' way."
"Good," Byron said with a relieved smile. Secretly, he had been waiting for this day to come for decades. The stars had warned him that one of the key players in the Great Prophecy would come to need his aid, and he had hoped the mute traveler would be the one. Unfortunately, the young man left only a few hours after he arrived at Yengi Fortress. Byron had discovered his body on the plains being eaten away by some plainswolves a few days later. Yet he had found Scar now. He had found one of the heroes. He was sure of it; the night sky had never lied to him before.
"So?" Scar's tone sounded awkward, as if the news he had given her made her feel like a fish out of water. "What do I do now?"
The elderly man shrugged. "There's nothing you can do until morning. Let's get some sleep until then."
Scar nodded, her eyelids already starting to droop. "Alright. Good night, Byron," she yawned while crawling back to where she'd been lying before Byron had read the prophecy in the stars.
The old man snuggled into the dirt. "Nighty night." With that, the duo took a restful nap beneath the twinkling, night sky, the spirits watching over them.
Scar awakened the next morning with the sun blaring in her vision. Automatically, she put her hand up to fend off the warm rays from her face; it had been a long time since she'd slept in like that. Back in Monataro she would've already been busy at sunrise. When her eyes had recovered, Scar sat up to look around for Byron, her mouth making dry smacking noises to get the moist feeling back into it. The old man was nowhere to be seen, and Genevieve was gone as well. She slowly got to her feet to begin her search for them, her muscles aching from the sleeping on the stiff ground.
A whinny broke through the quiet. "Genevieve?" Scar, now completely alert after hearing the mazelle's yip, ran in the direction the sound had come from.
"Genevieve! Are you ok?" she yelled, rounding a corner. In the square she'd first met Byron, Genevieve was running around happily as Byron chased her in a game. As soon as the mazelle noticed her rider was up, she stopped her galloping, and the old man crashed into her rear end. Scar couldn't help but let out a giggle.
"Oh! Good morning!" Byron laughed while he stood back up, the mazelle sniffing him as if checking to see that he was alright.
"Finally awake, are we?" the old man teased her. She shrugged, a grin still glued to her face. Genevieve had never played with anyone but Scar before, so it gave the sorceress good reason to have trusted the elder.
"Yeah," the girl stretched out her arms and yawned before continuing, "So what should I do about that prophesy?"
A thoughtful expression came over Byron's face. "Well, if I were you I'd go get some supplies in Simbasa. I have a feeling it'll be a long quest. Besides, you might get a clue as to where the other two heroes are. How does that sound?"
"Sure. I don't have a better plan."
"Excellent!" Byron clapped his hands together with a grin. "Let's get you packed up then!"
He started walking off, and she began to follow when he stopped her. "You just wait here. I'll go get some important things any traveler would need."
"Okay," the sorceress agreed as he took off. As soon as he was out of sight, Scar felt Genevieve's nose nuzzle her shoulder, so she turned around to gently caress the mazelle's muzzle.
"Hey girl. How you doing?" she asked. The beast let out a sharp yip in return. After giving Genevieve's face a few more strokes, Scar made her way towards the bag that was tied around the mazelle's girth. She opened it hastily to make sure its contents were safe, letting out a sigh when she saw that everything was fine. She had managed to salvage her mother's necklace, Genevieve's bridle, her water-flask, her favorite book, and the skin of eternity water Baba had given her that fateful night.
Scar reached into the burlap bag and pulled out the lovely pendant. She hadn't taken the necklace into the sunlight before, yet it simply glowed in the rays. Scar had never seen anything so beautiful in all her life. Instinctively she pulled the jewelry around her throat and clipped it in the back to let it hang between her still-developing breasts. Once she'd admired the pendant for a few moments, she put her hand back into her bag to take out Genevieve's bridle. She hadn't had the time to put it on the mazelle back in the run from Monataro, so now she carefully placed it over Genevieve's head, gently pulling her fuzzy, long ears through the leather loops and securing the nose piece over her snout. The mazelle shifted its hooves excitedly since having the bridle on usually meant they'd be going for a ride.
"Calm down, you!" Scar exclaimed as a hoof almost stepped on her moccasin-covered feet. Genevieve let out a grunt when she realized they weren't leaving yet. At that moment the old man returned, his arms full of various goods as well as a large sack draped over his shoulders.
"Found everything you were looking for?" she questioned while he dropped everything to the ground, creating quite the clatter.
"Yep!" the old man chirped, "Now just give me a minute and it'll be all packed up!" Byron stuffed food, some of his old clothes, a bar of soap, and some other little articles into a thatch sack he had made himself.
"Um... Do you need help?" the sorceress asked midway through his efforts.
"No. Almost there... Aha! Finally! You should be ready to go," he announced while stepping away from his work. In front of him sat the most overstuffed bag Scar had ever seen.
"Impressive," she muttered while nodding her head approvingly.
Byron admired his work for a couple of seconds prior to remembering something and reaching into a pocket in his loincloth that Scar had failed to notice before. "I almost forgot! Here's some money," he said while dropping a small yet heavy draw-string bag into her hand, "It should be enough to get some decent supplies in Simbasa and maybe then some."
"Oh, Byron. You don't need to do this for me," Scar semi-gushed, her voice filled with emotion.
"It's my pleasure to help out someone as vital to this world as you." The old man smiled kindly. "Now come along. The gate out is this way." He gestured for her to follow him as he turned to walk in the direction of the tall tower they'd trained at yesterday. Scar grabbed at Genevieve's reigns to lead her to the where the old man was going. They traveled for endless minutes in absolute silence; nothing sounded but the rare caw of a hawk or the light howl of the wind. All Scar could see were stone ruins and hardy, fortress wall. There was no sign of an opening to the outside world anywhere. Finally, a huge, wooden door came into view as it was revealed from behind a structure that looked to have been a shop at one point but was now only half standing. The old man approached the door casually, as if he opened humongous doors every day, and yanked at the black, metal ring the size of a window back in Monataro to have the door slowly open with a screech. The comfort of seeing the plains again made the sorceress's heart warm as she led her mazelle out into the openness.
"Simbasa should be about a day's ride that way," the elderly man motioned straight out in front of them.
"Byron," Scar stopped and turned back towards him, a sheepish look on her face while she let go of Genevieve's reigns for a moment, "I just wanted to, you know… Well, thank you for rescuing me yesterday. And thanks for teaching me so much. I know it'll come in handy sometime or another."
"It was no problem," he said, his face wrinkling up into a grin.
A sad look came into her eyes. "Are you sure you don't want to come?"
Byron shook his head. "No. This is your journey. Only you can make it. I belong here, my home." The old man then quickly pulled her in for an awkward, unexpected hug, and he beamed with pride as they broke away from the embrace. "It was an honor to meet you, Scar. Good luck on your journey! Be sure to visit every now and then! It gets awfully lonely here by myself!"
"Will do!" Scarletta laughed before jumping on Genevieve and giving a hearty "hyah!" Byron watched as the girl and her mazelle galloped away towards Simbasa.
A few hours after the sorceress had left, Byron sat in front of the fortress gates, weaving together a thatch basket. The sound of hoof-beats echoed in the distance. The old man looked up from his handiwork to see who was approaching; three riders wearing nothing but black rode upon jacklers toward him. Jacklers were dodos of a sort, standing about seven feet tall with ruffled, black feathers. These jacklers that the hooded figures rode had obviously been badly taken care of, considering the bald patches that were too frequent for molting, the way their legs were terribly scarred from years of fighting in their holding pens, and the angry temperament they carried as they squawked and nipped at one another whilst running. The birds were making good speed, though, and it wasn't long before they had to be yanked to a stop in front of the ever-calm Byron.
"Can I help you?" the old man asked with a friendly smile.
One of the figures, a man, jumped off his jackler to come closer to the elderly man. "We're looking for a girl. She is about this tall, black hair, tan skin. Have you seen her?" the man in the black robes pressed in a commanding tone while thrusting a well-drawn picture of Scar into his face.
"Never heard of her." Byron continued his basket weaving.
"I don't believe you," the man sneered.
"What is there to disbelieve?"
The robed figure pointed to the mazelle tracks leading away from the fortress. "That."
Byron was barely able to conceal the nervousness of being caught in his lie. "Oh that? That's probably from some animal that walked through here days ago. How I love a visitor."
"Well, gramps, I'm not buying it. So talk!" the man rapidly pulled out a crooked-looking dagger and held it to Byron's nose, "Before I cut out your throat."
"Make me," Byron said and stuck out his tongue.
The hooded figure growled in anger. "Alright then. You're coming back with us. You are under arrest by orders of the Panther Organization. Tie him up!"
The old man didn't fight back as the other two figures in black got off their jacklers to knot his hands together with rope.
"Atta' boy, gramps. Nice and easy now," the man said while putting his knife away, showing that he was letting his guard down. Little did he know that Byron had been prepared for their arrival to Yangi Fortress. The old man walked a few steps with his captors before throwing a small, round object to the ground. Immediately a thick smoke erupted from the round object that completely surrounded Byron and the hooded figures, making it impossible to see. The people wearing black coughed and hacked in the smog. When most of the smoke had cleared, the old man was nowhere to be seen, and the rope that had bound him was lying limp on the dirt.
"He must have run back into the fortress! Catch him!" the leader of the robed figures yelled to his inferiors. One of the Panther members summoned a whip of stone into her hands, the other pulling out a rapier from under his black cloth. They then both ran into the fortress as fast as they could to find the old man.
"He couldn't have gotten far," the woman, a sorceress, stated sternly, her vision wandering over the old ruins.
The man investigated a pile of rubble carefully. "Yeah, but keep your eyes out." Suddenly, a coconut sized rock came from up high, hitting the man with the rapier in the head with a thud and knocking him unconscious.
Just then the man who'd threatened Byron with the knife joined the sorceress, running up to her with lightning speed to see what was taking his lower-ranking officers so long. "He's up there!" she exclaimed while pointing up to the tallest tower in the fortress where Scar and Byron had trained the day before.
The leader of the group pulled out a metal ball with a wick, throwing it to the sorceress. "Light him up. He isn't going to talk."
The woman in the black robe lit the wick with her fire magic and tossed it into the open door at the bottom of the tower. In seconds the ball had exploded, causing the fragile building to collapse. The blast could be heard from miles around. When the sounds of destruction stop, the sorceress stopped covering her eyes with her arm and looked at the pile of rocks that used to be a tower with a wicked grin.
Her superior gave a swift kick to one of the pieces of rubble, sending it flying high above the fortress's walls with his sorcerer-enhanced strength. "There's no way he could've survived that," he said almost proudly. "Let's get back to Master Elias to give him our report. The girl has been here for sure." The sorceress helped her fallen comrade, who was just awakening from the blow to the head from the stone, to his jackler. The three Panther members then got back upon their squawking steeds and headed off, leaving Byron and the remains of the tower in deathly silence.
Me: So, Scar, what are your New Year's resolutions? :3
Scar: Escape from your basement. :)
Me: Fat chance. I just installed an electrified fence that I got for Christmas. :P
Scar: I can dream! XP And why the hell would Santa give you an electric fence? 0.0
Me: I was on his extra-nice list this year. ;P
Scar: And what did you have to do for that? 0.0
Me: I gave him my soul. :3
Scar: I knew it! You are a ginger! XP
Me: Bitch please. I'm like a pineapple. Brown on the outside, blonde on the inside. ;P
Scar: And you're prickly. X3
So another chapter of PoS (lolz. Looks like it stands for "Piece of Shit" XD) is done! I'm already working on chapter 5, and I pretty much have chapter 6 done. Anywhozzles, I hope you guys are enjoying where this story is going and continue to follow the adventures of Scar and I in future chapters. And remember kids, if a fat guy in a red suit asks if you want a ride home on his sleigh, just say no. XP
Scar: Thanks for the mental image. -.-"
Me: You're welcome. :D
Reviews = Love XD