Hey yo there! Wow, it's been quite some time since I've updated this. At the point of writing this, I'm glad to say that I'm downloading the 7th ed version of the Warhammer codex. Hurray! Finally, the 7th ed for Wood Elves! Pip pip cheerio! :) In case you guys are wondering what's the link, let me say that this story's primary inspiration comes from this awesome fantasy series. Go ahead and have a look at the miniatures for that series on display on the Games Workshop site. Go to the UK version. That's a personal advice from me since I don't really like the US window site. Not that much stuff there apart from the miniatures there especially the more recent campaigns. :S Anyway, again like what I've done before for the previous update of Circles of Arven. I won't do a summary here since that was already in the previous chapter and you can just read through it by skipping back to it and browse through the chapter to have a fair idea on what has gone on here. Ok, so I've said enough. With everything said and done, let's rock!
The Elven Chronicles: Chapter 6 – Of The Past, Future And The Journey
"I give you the right to speak to that child. However, you must give me your word that you must not tell him anything about the power within him, the Eyes of the Void. For I fear the knowledge of it's existence will burden him. I know what he had gone through and due to this reason, you must not tell him anything. Unless the moment of awakening comes to him, speak nothing of it."
He remembered the very day he lost his mother. He could never remember the days he spent with her. Whenever he tried to recall them, all that filled his heart was sadness and sorrow. Above all, he had never wept for her demise. Never at all and possibly not for eternity as well...
Illandil stood before the great oak. The very same tree which had seen countless funerals of his kind. And that also included his mother. The one who brought him up but at the same time he had no memories of those days. Then there was his father. No one spoke about him apart from the fact that they said he was a talented Bladesinger and he always had the tendency to wander into the outside world. Never has Illandil ever seen his father's face. They said he died around the same time that he was born. More often than not, Illandil thought that if his father was around, he might have happy memories of his past unlike his current self where he couldn't even recall his childhood with his mother. He knew it was a foolish thought but that was exactly why he had chose the same path of his father. For deep in his heart, he knew or at least assume that his mother and father were a loving pair and despite his lack of memories with her, he always held the firm belief that she would want him to be a Bladesinger as well like his father. To him, that was the only way to remind him of what he could really had if not for the demise of his father. Illandil knew it was a false hope at the very best, but he couldn't let it go.
Faynor has said to Illandil before that he had viewed the way of the Bladesingers to be a burden rather than life. Perhaps it was really true. But then again, this could also be the case where it was the only path he could take. At least by thinking in this way, he had pulled through the Test of Will at the first try where he was branded with the Tattoo of Norch as the proof of the immense mental trial he had gone through. No one had done that feat before. Even up till now, Illandil never knew whether it's by sheer willpower or some other factors included that made him being able to do that.
As he fixed his eyes on that very same tree, Illandil was reminded of the significance of it's existence. Ci'elader, the tree of peace. This was the very same tree where the Wood Elves held their funerals for their own dead be it through war or by other means. Before that great oak, the mourners would witness the bodies of the dead dissolving into wisps of light, a symbol of the cycle of life and death.
From nature comes life, to nature shall death return.
Illandil has always knew this truth held in great esteem by the Asran and Fey. To them, life and death means nothing more than a part of nature's cycle. And within this area of confine, the choice made in life would only mean the course of nature making it's wisdom known to all unto the moment of death where the existence of legacy would be passed down as a form of reminder. The reminder that was called life.
Illandil gripped his sword as these thoughts ran through his mind. His father's legacy... the reminder of his life. The only evidence of it lies in the sword that he left to him. His people called it Carundir. In the tongue of the Asran, it means sword of the elements. Why was it named that way? This was the question Illandil had always ask himself. To him, if he knew the meaning behind the name, at least he might have found the true meaning of his life for all he knew. However, the truth was the opposite. He had never knew why the sword was named as such and perhaps more importantly, he had never felt the presence of what he truly wanted in life. Not in the past neither was it in the present as well. Then what of the future? There's a saying that might have been lost to those beyond his race and the Fey.
The past is the presence of Order, the present is the symbol of Change and the future is the existence of Chaos.
Illandil knew what it mean. By saying the past being the Order, it means that everything has been set in the truth. Order could never be changed by mortal means and that was the nature of the past. As for the present being the Change, it means the present could be shaped easily by actions commitd in this world. Finally on the future being Chaos, it means nothing more than the fact that it would always be a total unknown, an aspect of Chaos as was known throughout the ages.
Then he heard someone approaching. Without turning his head, he said, "No I'm not in the mood to mess around with you Gailen."
"Gailen? I'm afraid you got the wrong person."
On hearing these words, Illandil spun around to see a human standing before him. He was dressed in traveller's garb with short blonde hair. Illandil was taken aback by what he had seen. It was absolutely unheard of to see any person outside his own race and the Fey to take step into Arthen Loryth in this manner. His eyes narrowed as he shot the human his first question.
"Why are you here?"
"Are you saying no other race beyond the borders of this realm should be here?"
"Unfortunately you must have been disappointed to see me here then."
"More likely I think it's absurd to say the least."
"What's your name by the way?"
"Why would you want to know?"
"Because I want to be sure that you're the one I'm seeking. Lord Oryan told me the one I'm looking for will be here."
"The Lord of my people... why would he told you about this?"
"Because he recognized my thinking in seeking him out is a correct decision."
Illandil paused to digest the human's words. They were definitely nothing more than absurdity. But at the same time, no one within the borders of Arthen Loryth would lie in Oryan's name. His hold in this forest was absolute. He would definitely know about it if this act was commited in the confines of his homeland. After struggling with whether he should let his identity be known, he decided to give the human the reply he wanted. Not because he trusted him, but because he trusted in Oryan's powers within this forest realm.
"Then you're Lysendil's only son then?"
Illandil was shocked at this reply. How had this human knew his father's name? And why he had spoken this name in a tone that suggested he had actually knew him? Then Illandil remembered what the previous generation had said. That his father had a tendency of wandering beyond his home. Then it should the reason then, he thought. If not, then there's no way a human could ever know his father.
"So what if I am?" replied Illandil in a wary tone. He did not doubt the possibility of this human knowing his father. What exactly was his agenda however remained to be seen.
"Then you're the one I'm looking for."
"You heard it."
"Because you're the key in saving the world."
"That's the common reply that a normal mortal would say in this case. But it's the truth."
"I seriously think you're fucked up in the head."
"No I'm not. And I hope you will stop going like 'Oh my gosh I really want to rebutt this idiot before me' because it will be pointless."
"I get what you mean. Fine then. I'm all ears to hear what you want to say."
"To be honest, what Fareth is actually facing is beyond my knowledge."
"Wow that's gay. Anything else?"
"That's pretty spot on to be honest. But it can't be helped. Still I need you to come with me to go beyond your homeland."
"And why me?"
"Because you have something that is crucial."
"And what was that?"
The human paused before continuing.
"Do you happen to possess your father's sword?"
"It seems that you know something about this that I don't know all the while." said Illandil as he placed his hand onto the sword pommel. An indication that he was trying hint to the human to say something that might prove important concerning Carundir.
"Let me first ask you. Are there runes of your people being carved onto the sword?"
"So what if it is?"
"Then you do know what it means then."
"A weapon of magic. But to be honest, there's no presence of it in the sword."
"Carundir, sword of the elements. If you want to find out what it symbolizes, you have to follow me to the outside."
"Unfortunately for you, I don't intend to do that. No matter what the world faced, Arthen Loryth will never fall."
"Well I can't do anything to change this thinking of yours for now. But have you ever thought of the reason why your father chose to wander in the first place?"
"I'll be interested to see what you have to say for this to be honest."
"The reason is very simple. And that is..."
"What the hell is wrong with you in pulling me to this place Lysendil?"
"Very simple. You've asked me before why I chose to go beyond my home. What you'll see soon will be the answer."
"Are you drunk? I don't remember... oh shit, what the -beep- is that? A meteor? You brought me here just to see some -beep- crap that one can see in everyday life?"
"Rodasis... the hill of meteor. This is the place where people will gather to witness meteors flashing by on random basis. I guess it's a bit of dumb luck that no one is here to disturb the atmosphere here."
"Please, I'm not a gay."
"I'm not one as well. But I want to let you know fully what this actually means to the people of Britannia and this current ambience suits it best. Quiet and serene. The sight of a meteor viewed here symbolizes a wish coming true if it is made during the meteor's appearance before it vanished from sight."
"It may seem this way to you. But someone I know in the past enabled me to understand that it is actually minor things in life like this that define how we live."
"What are you trying to say?"
"Very simple. Why I choose to wander is very simple. To discover what are the so-called minor details in life that will let me know my true self. My people can live for ages. But it is also because of this that they neglected the memories of all the minor things that they've gone through and enjoy. Thus, they have never seen the true joy in life like the much lesser lived races like humans. Leonas led me to understand this."
"And this Leonas is the 'someone' you've mentioned? How did you meet him by the way?"
"He was a Questor in Britannia. We met during a joint military operation between my people and his fellow men to destroy a marauding band of Orcs. He has passed away, but I will never forget what he had taught me.
I remember that when we first met, we were sort of like rivals competing who can make the most kills. From there onwards, we grew a bond that none of our people expected. It was like we saved each other's ass once in a simliar way. A moment of helping hand, a start of a friendship.
I still remember before going back to Arthen Loryth, he brought me here just to witness a meteor. I really laughed at his idea on both of us making a wish when the meteor flashed by. Of course I never did anything. But it seems that Leonas still haven't forgotten his roots as he told me of everything in his life that my kind considered as unimportant during that time... and the wish he made was like every other Questor. To become a Sacred Knight.
Of course I paid no heed to these words. But when I went back to my people, I felt some kind of empty feeling. It's like something was sorely lacking in me. I tried to find Leonas again afterwards in order to find some possible clues to the answer. But everything was too late. He got killed while defending a village in the Tornian Empire against a Chaoskin raid without even realizing his dream. If Fate truly exists, then I truly doubt it's being fair, for his sacrifice was nothing more than a cruel joke with the village itself being destroyed and it's people slain as the result.
Then something dawned upon me. What if I failed to find the answer to the feeling of void within me? Would I have lived for nothing? I truly feared the answer and I knew that staying within my own comfort zone wouldn't do anything to put things right."
"Guess it's a miracle an Elf can change for the sake of a so-called lesser race..."
"You got that wrong. I changed not because of Leonas but because of what I had seen in him. They're two different things you know..."
"So I guess you're trying to convince me to follow you after all this talk about the past..."
"You can say that this is the case. But I truly believe that you will find things beyond what you have learnt here if you agreed to my proposal."
"Bullshit. And I don't even know whether you're pulling all this out of your ass."
"This is definitely getting nowhere. And I don't think I've introduced myself yet. Name is Laryx."
"To be frank I don't care about your name. And you're right. This is getting nowhere and it will stay this way."
"Then would you want to cry for another person again? If so, then maybe you can find the strength to do so if you follow me."
On hearing these words, Illandil grabbed Laryx by the collar, his eyes staring into Laryx's and burning with anger.
"What do you know about me? Don't talk shit as if you know."
"Actually I do know what's going. Your mother died and you don't even know how to weep for her. You feel the hurt when you tried to recall the past you have forgotten, but you never experience the same feeling when you saw her passing away."
On those words, Illandil punched Laryx across the face flooring him. His mind was full of confusion now. How did this human get to know his past? And why had he been shakened by the other party's words at this very moment? And above all, what was this human thinking about?
As if knowing what was going on in Illandil's mind, Laryx got up and dusted his clothes saying, "Believe it or not, Lord Oryan told me all about you. If you are shaken by what I've said, then it means you're still no different from your kin despite what you might doubt on this area. And trust me when I said I mean no harm. If not, Lord Oryan would have destroyed me straight. But then again, I gave my word to him that I won't force you to a decision. Think about my words. I hope to hear your reply as soon as possible."
Illandil's eyes narrowed as he saw Laryx left. To him, it's absurd to think that Oryan had told this stranger about him. There's no reason behind it. Or at least that was what he thought. But above all, seeing him left the scene could never calm the turmoil within him.
"Wow, amazing scenario here."
Illandil never turned to face the speaker since he know who it was.
"Go away Gailen. I'm not in the mood to joke with you."
"Yeah I know that. You always said that whenever you're messed up in the head. Then before you know it, things actually got much better after we've finish our little talk show."
"All for minor reasons."
"Doesn't make a difference to me. Here." said Gailen as he tossed a bottle of wine in Illandil's direction which he caught with ease.
"Fuck. I know this won't work, but at least I guess I'll feel better listening to your crap over a bit of wine."
"So we're drinking here?"
"No. Both of us aren't morons. This is a sacred place. Let's go somewhere else."
"Okay. If that's what you want."
"Bloody hell. The more I drink, the more sober I get." swore Illandil as he sat together with his best friend.
"Wow. Amazing to hear you saying it. I've never said anything up till now and you're actually drinking the wine like water. Be careful. You may be drunk by now. It's just that you might not realized it."
"Ok, then what number is this?" asked Gailen as he held up his left hand with the index and middle fingers sticking out.
"Then what about this?" Gailen asked yet again, this time showing his thumb and index finger together at the same time.
"Holy shit. That means you're still sober to a certain extent at least. That's not something I've expected."
"That's because you've never seen me drunk."
"Well, that's possible. But your ability in holding liquor is insane from what I've seen."
"Enough about the shit. I supposed you know about what this random human is talking, don't you?"
"Yeah I know. Overheard the whole thing. It's amazing that your will can be shaken just after a few verbal shot."
"I'm not shakened."
"Then why in the blue hell you're drinking so fast?"
"No answer huh? Truth is, you're always thinking whether you're some kind of freak or not. Still remember how we first met?"
Illandil could only watched from afar as he saw other kids around his age kicking a leather ball around. He had wanted to join them. But then again, he feared what they might thought of him after his mother's funeral. By not weeping for her unlike the rest, he might have aroused certain unfavorable attention. Then he noticed a brown haired boy looking at him and waving madly. The sight was more than he could bear. Was it pity that drove him to do that? He did not want to confront all the possibilities as he ran away.
He did not know how far he had run, but at least he wasn't out of his settlement and that was a good thing. If not, then he would have gotten lost. Time passed as his mind went into a blank state. After seeing the scene before him, he did dread to do any thinking. For if he was to do that, he would again questioned his existence. It was then that he felt a tap on his shoulder. Turning around, he saw the very same brown haired kid beaming broadly at him.
"What do you want?" asked Illandil in an impatient tone.
"Well, just here to ask you whether you want to play football with me and my friends."
"Forget it. You can just play with the rest. I'm not going."
"There's no why."
"Actually there is. It's just that you don't want to say it out."
These words began to fill Illandil with rage all of the sudden. Why did this nosey kid wants to know so much? So that he could pity him? Or even mock him? And above all, he hated the way that he said everything as if he knew so much more than him. Then without warning, Illandil sent a punch across the annoying kid's jaw, sending him staggering.
"That will teach you not to mess around with me." huffed Illandil.
"Oh yeah?" replied the kid as he put up that same old grin, "How about this?"
A punch was sent flying across the cheek as Illandil produced the same reaction. Looking at the kid with anger, he could still see that dumb smile on him. That was more than he could bear. Was he mocking his presence? Without hesitation, he threw another punch and his opponent returned the favor. Within a number of blows, both were lying on the ground and spent from the slugging match.
"Wow, I've never felt so high before." commented the unknown kid.
"Shut up. You're just here to make trouble, right?"
"Well maybe. Anyway, feel much better now?"
"What the hell are you talking about?"
"Fist fights are good for venting out your frustrations. I've did that before, so I know."
"Actually, I really feel better. At least I don't give a hoot about what's bugging me for now."
"And what's that thing bugging you? I guess that's also the reason why you ran off out of the sudden."
"None of your business."
"Maybe... but have you ever tried telling others how you feel? That can be a good way to make friends."
"I don't need any of that."
"Wow... all that coming from a kid who never wept for his mom. Quite typical."
"Are you laughing at me?" questioned Illandil in a dangerous tone suggesting that he would only be more than willing to continue the fight.
"Then you're pitying me."
"No. Actually I'm curious to see what will happen if we become friends."
"Doesn't mean anything to me. I've officially been initiated into the Way of the Bladesingers. So I don't think we will meets again."
"Don't be an ass. You did belong to this settlement, so definitely you can have time with the rest of us here if you want to."
"Does that mean anything to me?"
"Well, you can try and see if you want to."
"Why will you want to be friends with me? I won't feel a thing if you died or even anybody else for that matter."
"Why are you saying this?"
"Because I never feel anything when my mother died. I don't know why, but that's the case. In fact, I'm wondering if I'm some kind of monster. Only monsters won't cry for those around them."
"All right then," answered the Elven boy as he got up to his feet, "I've decided now. From now on, you'll be my friend!"
"Are you nuts? I've told you about myself and you still want to be friends with me?"
"Well, maybe you won't really cry for me when I die. But still being a true friend means not expecting anything in return for favors, right? I really want to experience such a thing as true friendship. To be frank, I don't feel anything while playing with that lot. I guess it's because I just treat them as ordinary friends. But for you, I just feel that both of us can really click together despite our pasts being miles apart."
"You're having a whim here."
"Yeah I guess so. But so what? Having a sudden whim may not mean the whole thing will be off within three minutes. I've always got a knack of turning sudden whims into long time goals. In fact, that's the reason why I can last two weeks of training in being a Woods Guard without dropping my interest."
Illandil looked at the person before him in a dumbfound manner. He still did not doubt the kid was doing it for kicks. But for some reason, he was willing to try and get to know him. True he doubted the friendship would last long, but still he couldn't resist the temptation in doing so despite the risks. It was then that he realized one thing he had truly wanted. The need to have someone by his side even though he may not end up crying for him. It was a selfish decision to make, but Illandil couldn't care less for now.
"Do you think you can get some wine? I really want to have go at it now." smiled Illandil.
"Well, you've asked the right person. I've taken that stuff before, so I know how to get it without any problems."
"And yeah, what's your name by the way?"
"Wow that's some memory when I think back on this." grinned Gailen.
"But I guess some things never change. At least I still never cried for anybody ever since." answered Illandil in a sombre tone.
"So you're still questioning the nature of your existence I guess."
"Pretty much true."
"Try going off with that human dude then."
"You heard me. Go to the outside world."
"Let's just face it pal. If you can really cry for another person in your current state, you would have done so. I hate to say this, but staying here may not mean anything where changing your life for the better is concerned. That's the conclusion I've reached after all these years. Going beyond our borders may have a fifty-fifty chance of turning things around. It's not a sure-fire way to undergo a serious change, but at least the chances are there. Well, at least that's what I've thought after all these years. Only reason why I've never said that out is because I don't want any shit coming out as the result. For some weird reasons, everyone will jump if I did or say something controversial."
"That's because you're a controversial guy in the first place."
"Possible. But anyway, now the chance is there for you to take. I'm saying all this is because that green dude ruling over us has given that human bloke the possibility of taking you away. It may not be a bad thing given the fact that he was given the permission."
Illandl paused for a moment to digest what Gailen has said. All the while, he had questioned whether he was a needless existence from what had happen before. But still he had no answer to it all the while. Would he have a chance to find out if he ventured beyond his comfort zone? Or would it end up in failure? He couldn't find an answer to it. Then he remembered what Laryx had said about his father. If it was true, then to Illandil, there was a real hope that he could find what he truly wanted. If his father could find a path truly belonging to him through this means, then so could he.
And lastly, there was Carundir, the blade that his father had left to him. He had always wanted to find out the true meaning behind it's presence. Why did it had the runes inscribed on it where in fact, there were no evidence of magic within it? He knew that the answer was vital to his future in one way or another. If he couldn't find it within his home, then the only alternative was to go beyond it. As he reached to his final decision, he downed the final drops of the potent liquor.
"Thanks for the stuff Gailen."
"Yeah you should. I nearly got caught. By the way, you're going off?"
"Yeah. Got to prepare myself for what is going to happen. Thanks for the little chat here. You made me came to the correct decision." answered Illandil as Gailen looked at him in the eyes and found the answer to the issue.
"No I didn't. The very most I did was just to push you slightly upwards. It's your decision and if there's any credit due, it will be to you." smiled Gailen, "Too bad I can't tag along. Shit might happen if I do."
"Sucks to be you then." smirked Illandil.
Wow, finally finished this. And again for the second consecutive time, I've come up with a super long chapter. Hopefully, you guys don't get stretched by it since imo, this can be a boring chapter for all I know. :( But tbh though, I do enjoy doing the flashbacks since it gives me a free reign on the characters' past. ;) Anyway, hope to see the reviews from you guys soon! Bye! :)