Chapter 13: Harnor and The Hatter bring news

An entire week had passed since the incident at Kal Hommach, Phillip and Flourence had returned, having warned the Centaurs and Human cities, they joined in patrols with Argamir and Mr Nord every night. There had been no word from Harnor or The Hatter, but Phillip did bring some rumours. The Dwarfs had apparently been invaded by an unknown enemy and were gathering their armies for a fight.

Cornelius had been training Arthur all week also; today he was testing his resistance to spells. "Slissero!" The spell shot from Cornelius' wand and struck Arthur's arm, cutting it, blood dribbled down his arm.

"I told you to resist." Cornelius sneered, healing Arthur's bloody cuts with his wand. "It's hard to do that without a wand." Arthur answered back.
"I told you, you can't until The Hatter gets back to make one. Now, continue to resist." Cornelius commanded. "Stuperio!" the stunning spell shot from the wan and hit Arthur in the chest, blasting him back against the wall.

Arthur picked himself off the ground, sweating as he normally did during these lessons. "I told you to resist." Cornelius repeated, frowning at Arthur. Arthur picked himself up off the floor, "We've been at this all week! If I could just rest…"
"The Dark Destroyer isn't resting!" he growled, pushing Arthur back against the wall. "Excuses, Galeron trained you well. You're just like him, weak, pathetic!"
"Galeron was a good man!" Arthur argued back.
"Galeron wasn't all that you made him out to be, he was a swine! Prove that you're better, control your pain."

Arthur was backed against the wall again, preparing him for the next spell to hit him. "Stuperio!" Cornelius yelled, Arthur jumped to the side, the spell deflected off the wall back at Cornelius, hitting him in the chest and knocking him to the floor. "You'll pay for that!" Cornelius gasped, raising himself off the floor and aiming his wand at Arthur.

Arthur readied himself for the hit, instead the study door opened. Argamir and The Hatter were supporting a bloody Harnor, whose leg was cut badly and bleeding badly. Cornelius flicked his wand and pulled up seats.

"They appeared just outside the village." Argamir stated and he lowered Harnor into a seat. The Hatter was also in a bad shape, his clothing, except for his hat, was also ripped to shreds as if clawed at by a wild animal. The Hatter also took a seat, "We didn't ever get into Kal Hommach, place was overrun with Shadows." He gasped, breathing heavy.

Arthur also took his seat; The Hatter's face was terrified. "Shadows were pouring out of the entrance. Not just Shadows, there were people too."
"People?" Arthur asked confused.
"I reckon Cult followers of The Destroyer, or descendants of his followers from before." Cornelius said he was healing Harnor's wounds with his wand; the cuts on his bloody leg began to heal. The Hatter nodded, "We would have got back sooner but werewolves spotted us, they were also gathering there, and vampires among other things. Harnor transformed and fought them off but was wounded; my clothes were also torn up. We had to hide for the night; it took us all week to lose them. We also listened in on some of them during our third night."
"What did you hear from them?" Argamir asked.
"Good information" Harnor said, he had awoken from unconsciousness, "I think they know where the second tome is, and now we know too."

Cornelius stowed his wand away in his robe pocket, "Where is it then?" he asked, taking his seat.
"A place of great magical learning, the College of Wizards." Harnor smiled.

There was another meeting that night, plans to get into the college, infiltration and how to locate the tome. Harnor stayed outside for most of the night, Arthur stayed with him, talking and laughing, until the topic of Werewolves came up.

"Why didn't you or Galeron tell me you were a Werewolf?" Arthur asked Harnor, who smoking his pipe. Harnor smiled his usual smile, "would you really trust me if you found out I was an Elf as well as a werewolf?"
"Of course I trust you!" Arthur protested. Harnor looked up at the sky, "it's been a while since anyone has ever said that." And he resumed smoking his pipe.

Arthur grew even more curious, "How did you catch Lycanthropy anyway?" he asked politely.
"I told you how Galeron rescued me from Werewolves when I was a boy." He explained, pointing at his scarred face.
"But it takes more than a scratch; I read that it takes a bite." Arthur retorted back.

Harnor frowned, "yes it does." He unbuttoned his waistcoat then lifted up his dirty shirt. There was a huge scar on Harnor's left side, the scarring of a massive bite mark from a Werewolf. Harnor pulled his shirt back down and buttoned his waistcoat back up. "You have no idea how much it hurt. My life was taken from me twice, first as a Werewolf and second when our Kingdom was burned. With Galeron's death it feels like a third time." Harnor smoked his pipe once more before standing up and going back inside.

Arthur walked to the Tree, he felt better there. He sat down under its familiar branches and breathed heavy. He didn't like it, Galeron dead, Cornelius as his new teacher and he was more brutal than Galeron ever was, he hated Cornelius.

"Coin for your thoughts?" Damon hung upside down from a branch, his ginger hair dangled from his head.
"Just thinking of how it used to be, that's all." Arthur answered back, looking at the damp grass.

Damon flipped from the tree branch and landed on his feet, "of course it's all going to change now. But think of it this way, you have a girl that loves you, and we have a team on our side. There is no way we can lose! The Destroyer had a lot of work ahead of him." Damon smiled and patted his friend on the back.

"Galeron was killed, the best out of us all, what's to stop him from killing us all right now?" Arthur hung his head.
"Nothing is, but if he's going to kill us we won't go down without a fight. Agreed?" and Damon held out his hand. Arthur smiled and took his hand and shook, "agreed." And Damon lifted Arthur up. They both laughed and played, just like the old times before hell broke loose. After that they both headed home, Arthur slept as soon as his head hit the straw pillow. He went to bed smiling.