Chapter 1 Of Fear and Hatred

The great beast lumbered over the trees of the forest of shadows as dawn came, it's huge arms swinging from side to side. This was one giant of many, coming to destroy the quiet town of Mirlie. More than a five-hundred goblins trailed these beasts and a score of magic users behind the main host. This town was picked by Draconis himself to be annihalated. Draconis, not a merciful man, planned on destroying this town and bringing everything to ashes in a twenty mile radius. He didn't want the child escaping, the one bane he had was this child. He could do nothing directly about it, he had to start a war to take care of the one barrier standing in his way. The forest of shadows was not a place of desire for most adventurers, they knew what lurked there. Or at least thought they knew of the forest's minor inhabitents. Goblins were more annoying and agrivating than dangerous, but the giants of the wood were especially dangerous. And most of all The Citadel was built somewhere in this forest... The one thing most of the people in the Kingdom of Harlow feared. And Draconis planned on keeping it this way...

The anger and seathing hatred in Draconis' eyes was not well hidden and he knew that in less than a day he would have control of yet another small town. His power spread each day and better yet the fear of him and his host spread even farther and faster. The one possible outcome that would destroy his plans was if "the boy" was able to live through this day. He wouldn't let it happen. He knew better than to let a child so small someday grow into a potential threat to his conquest. The Priestess who owed allegience only to the Goddess of Kenedrel, had told him that this was to come. He knew he couldn't let fate ruin his aspirations. Draconis let a sliver of a smile pass by his lips for a fleeting second and then he let his smile turn into his grim facade again. He knew better than to think that he could not win. This was just the front of his battle he had three other battalions coming to take care of this town and its surroundings also. There was no chance of defeat, how could he lose? He couldn't and he would not let failure grab ahold of him, not at this very distinct moment. He looked forward to the town that he was going burn to the ground then to his general, General Milokean, one of the most feared men in the Kingdom of Harlow, aside from Draconis of course.

"Are we ready then Milokean? I want a swift victory. No survivors, no potential vengeances." Draconis thought for a moment then turned back to the General, "You know if we destroy this town and the next today, why I do think that you could have your own town to rule. Wouldn't that be nice?" Dracons smirked as he said this, he knew it would raise the Generals bloodlust. The General always wanted his own town or province to call his own.

"Thurr shouldn't be a problem sir!, Ya know me troops can handle sumdin' as small and pitiful as dis." The General replied in his gruff voice, pointing to the upcoming town. "Dem towns don't have any defenses. Deres no way Dey could hold out!" The General was a big man, especially for a human, not fat, but muscular. He could swing his giant axe with ease and swiftness unmatched. His arms were the size of Draconis' legs, but what Draconis lacked in strength (wich wasn't lacking at all) he made up for in his intelligence and cunning. The General looked very in place with all the goblins, orcs, and giants. He was quite ugly, but a formidible opponent none the less.

Draconis looked back to the field that they were about to set fire to and charge into the town. "Let us hope so Milokean, for if we fail. You will be the one to pay." Draconis answered wit a calm that unnerved even the General. He knew that Draconis was very serious and did not joke. Draconis jumped off his mount and unsheathed his long sword, it glowed an crimson red. As if it fed off of the blood it would spill. This sword was called "The dream destroyer" It only did one thing, it destroyed peoples aspirations, crushed them before the blade even hit it's target and the opponent would lose all hope in themselves. The wielder sometimes would become insane with using this weapon. But Draconis fed off of it, he was more than just an average human. He wielded his low almost behind him and sneaked into the town as the others were leaving he would find his mark every so often. A mother running with her child, A father coming back from morning chores around the farm. Draconis would find them and they wouldn't even know he was there. Then he would do his damage. Three people were already headless, and the goblins made sure that noone escaped. The giants launched giant balls of stone at the towns buildings. More than one scream was heard that morning in the next of Mirlie. The town gathered it's forces, not knowing what they would be up against. They were sure to fall also.

Draconis rushed into house after house making sure no man, woman, or child survived. He would kill them in his normal routine, using the dream destroyer to eat away at there soul as it impaled the person. Parents would have to watch as there children fell in the dirt face first and children would die knowing there parents were next. The blood soaked into the sand and it soon looked as if this town had red grass. No survivors called for desperate measures and this was a desperate measure on Draconis' part. But he had to make sure his minions didn't falter, he had to make sure noone was left alive.

"Milokean, are we ready for the next town?" Draconis had captured the General by surprise but as always, he was ready. And he showed his answer by cleaving the head off of his last victim, soaked in blood he got up and stood next to Draconis.

"Not one Goblin died dis here morn sir!" Milokean put his axe behind his back and started for his mount. Draconis was pleased, today would be a very uneventful day indead.

Jarien looked up at the imposing dust cloud, he knew what it meant. He was only seven years old but he still knew the meaning of war. All of his neighbors and freind's fathers getting ready for an attack. Jarien could only just stare and do nothing he was too weak. Too incapable of helping, his father ran across the yard with his short-sword and started to head for the Cathedral of light. A place of great history, and the jail for the blade of Darkness. His father turned around and yelled for Jarien to get inside and find his mother. Jarien ran to his house, the door was broken off... Jarien didn't like this, he went to his fathers tool shed and grabbed a shovel.

"Mother! We have to get out of here no mom!" Jarien yelled into the house. No reply, from anywhere. He stepped farther into the house... "Mom! Are you in here we need to get out of-"

"Hush boy! Goblins are about, but your right we need to get out of here!" Jariens mother ran to him and held him tight. She brushed his hair out of the way of his eyes then picked him up.

"Where are we going to go mommy?" Jarien asked feeling safe and secure in his mothers arms again. She looked at him with her beautiful smile and headed towards the Cathedral.

"The only place thats safe, the Cathedrals basement, maybe even the catacombs, who knows. We just need to get out of here!" She ran inside, gave one look to her husband as he held his sword firmly in his grasp he motioned for her to get underground as soon as she could with little Jarien in her arms. He knew it was probably the last time he would see his wife and child. He did not care as long as he could stop the threat that was coming soon.

"Hunny, we have to stay down here for a while ok?" Jarien's mother asked in the most stable way she could. She knew that Jarien was strong, but only in spirit, he was but a boy of course. He nodded his consent and held his mother just wanting to go home and be safe. But she knew better, that home would proably not be there when they got out of there. Jarien could feel his mothers warmth, then he realized she was bleeding. A wound to her leg, a deadly wound it was bleeding bad and probably was bleeding for a long time before that. She carried him all the way to the cathedral, he helped in making her wound worse. Jarien looked at the wound and to his mother. She just smiled and brushed his hair from his eyes.

"When you get out of this, please do me one favor my son. Please be strong and always know that your parents are with you?" She said as her eyes opened and closed, one long blink. She layed next to him craddling her only son, hoping that the goblins or anyone else wouldnt find this trap door. Then Jarien heard the battle overhead. There must of been a hundred people fighting over his head, then he heard nothing but silence and an evil laugh. One he would never forget, it sparked a fear in little Jarien that he never felt before. He turned to his mother but her eyes were closed. She had passed a few moments before, She did what she needed to do and that was to make sure Jarien would get to safety. Then Jarien felt a hatred for her killers and everyone that didn't help her, especially himself for not knowing. As the blackness of fear and anxiety swirled all about Jarien he heard the footsteps come close to being on top of him. He heard a people talking trying to make sure everyone was dead no dobut. And then the footsteps came in closer, and closer. Until they were overtop of him, it was too late though. The weak Jarien feinted from all that was happening...