Prologue

It was a Summer afternoon. There was no sign of life for miles around. There were corpses scattered around on the ground, the scent of rotting flesh traveling with the wind. There were patches of dead, dried grass every which-way. The sun was drying everything in it's path. This had to be the land of the dead. There was a tree though, in the middle of the land. Its leaves were blue and it was probably the largest tree there was. People would think that it was a mirage if they got that close to it, but it was real. There was a large green/blue oval gem in the center of its trunk and veins seemed to be coming from it. In front of the tree sat a young man. His hair was red with golden tips and his skin was slightly tanned, soon to be sunburned if he wasn't careful. He wore only scarlet, loose pants that seemed to be a bit large for him. It was much too hot to wear his shirt, that would be suicide in this heat! He was grateful for the loose pants, it made him feel the breeze a bit better. He opened his eyes, showing his bright green and yellow eyes. His eyes looked like that of a serpent's. He had a tiny patch of scales on his face and arms. He got irritated at them each time he put his shirt back on for the night. They always snagged somehow. He breathed in deeply and sighed. "Gods it's hot today..." He muttered, not that anyone was listening. He stood up, stretching. He really wished that there was at least a hot spring or something nearby, but it was nothing to worry about. How he survived here, he didn't know. All he knew was that this tree and him were connected somehow, and this was why he had to protect it... Right? He took note of his surroundings. Still nothing. Why people or how people got stranded in the desert, he didn't know. Nor did he really care. He walked to the left of the tree and picked up a large dead tree branch. He had found it when looking for a cactus for water. He jabbed the stick into the ground and grew a large circle around the tree. After that, he went inside the circle, climbed a few branches up and waited for the sun to set.

As the hours went by, he watched the few clouds pass, praying silently to the gods for rain. But nothing dropped from the heavens. He sighed and gave up for the day. When the sun finally set, he whispered, "Kathamatheu eta kiyu." Suddenly, flames sprouted up from the circle's edges. He put the stick up on a higher branch and settled himself on the sturdy branch he was on now. "Goodnight for now, but if the Ladon were to take my life, may I find happiness..." He prayed as he fell asleep. Ladon was the soul- taker of the gods. When a person's hourglass was finished of sand, he would reap the soul and take it to determine if he should take it to Mayon, the god of the heavens or Kasa, the god of darkness.

For the time being, he was a guardian of this tree, he knew that much. But what he did not know was that after several years had passed, that tree would be taken away from him. And he was to be seal away from it forevermore...