Of the Wilds of Moor
Godric noticed it after the third battle with the Anexus--Avalon was missing. It was difficult to tell the reason for this, it was not as though he could send an owl--could he? No, best not to cause her trouble should the wrong person discover it. Still his worry would go on no longer without a defiant answer. He sought out Avalon’s elder brother, a man named Falcon, on the battlefield, but to his surprise he too was no where to be found.
Both Avalon and Falcon had earned names for themselves as skilled warriors, but the chief Tali came across more as a legend than anything else. Likely because very few saw him and lived to tell. Both their sudden disappearance from the fields of battle caused a stir in the wizarding communities. Rumor circulated of wounds received in battle, but Godric was fully aware the list of those capable of fatally injuring either sibling was short. Still the rumors went on, but the Anexus continued their campaign without wavier. The disappearance of the two seemed to cause their brutality to increase however, expanding to territories outside their own. Before they defended the lands they governed, but now seemed they were engaging in open war.
That was the least of Moor’s concerns.
To the north, Salazar’s letters reported the increased activity of Dark Witches and Wizards. Before they were in small pockets, keeping to themselves and occasionally terrorizing a muggle village of two, but by those reports there was a gathering. Numbers grew by the day, some never witnessed in decades, not since the last Dark Lord who was vanquished by Godric’s great grandfather. They alone could not stand against such swelling numbers. Oric refused to believe else. He denied these gatherings their significance, saying without a Dark Lord to lead them they are disorganized, scattered; leaderless leads to conflicts for the throne which will eventually destroy them from within. He said this based on knowledge from his grandfather of the last Dark Lord. They are all the same he would say: arrogant, power-hungry, cunning, and deceptive. Nonetheless they all had a habit of making a show of their power to incite fear this would always reveal them to be known.
Godric did not agree. This generation of witches and wizards would be a turning point in history, he knew it.
Everyday Godric trained his swordsmanship, dueling anyone without a bruised ego from their last defeat. Soon enough he was the best in Moor and without a challenge in sight he began traveling outside the village to larger towns between conflicts. This however was not only to fuel is growing desire for duels, but to also seek out his long lost friend. Avalon had not been seen and word reached Moor of Falcon Anexus being executed for treason which caused Godric to fear the worst. Quickly he destroyed that thought off before it grew. Avalon would not be killed so easily, but what had happened that would cause her elder brother to be executed? Could that be the reason for her disappearance? Knowing the Anexus if that was the case they would want to handle one of their own themselves. Godric laughed at himself--good fortune to the poor soul sent against her.
By now Godric was in his sixteenth winter, already a man, he took on more responsibilities that often tied him to the village while his father was away. This did not suit the Griffendor anymore than it did Oric or Salazar. They are men of action, but of course action on the home front is what enables those on the battlefront to continue. Having a place to protect, to come back to makes everything worth fighting for.
Godric touched his bracer, feeling warmth hum throughout his body. Then he had an idea.
Fetching parchment and a quill he wrote a letter to Salazar.
Father has been away much, leaving me to care for the village in your place. I have grown tired of being kept from the war, I feel my skills would be best suited on the field of battle beside you in the north. I fear for your safety, brother, against this growing threat you speak of and father will not take your warnings as they are and insists there is no chance of a Dark Lord. I assume the worst. Brother please, convince father to allow me to travel north to you, he has always listened to you.
With the final crossing of T’s and dotting of I’s Godric sealed the letter and sent his owl off into the night. If he can gather evidence of the existence of a Dark Lord and their numbers are indeed too much for the Witches and Wizards of Moor to handle then father must listen to reason. If this continued it would threaten all of the isles and even the Anexus could be forced to see that this doom could not be faced alone.
His own father is reasonable. Oric may see an enemy, but he does well to put aside his own options for the greater good; alliances can be forged, however fragile they may be. Salazar is less than agreeable. He despises outsourcing of any kind and believes the reliance on others reveals the weakness and shortcomings of a person. Still...elder brother is the most intelligent of their family, a very logic-based individual would also see the outcomes are overwhelmed by the consequences.
For now, until a response from Salazar came, Godric kept close to the village, taking leadership of the village meetings and the coven gatherings. The elders did not seem to mind, though hot-blooded, Godric did well to mind his manners and respected the advise of his seniors. Though almost entirely wizard and witch, there remained less than a dozen muggles remained. The war had weeded out the others over the past few years, driving them to the safety of larger villages and even some cities to the southwest. Londinios was growing tremendously by this method. Safety in numbers--for muggles at least. Witches and wizards only found safety among family, in villages entirely of witch and wizard or alone in the wilderness; the city and most other places proved too dangerous for risk of exposure; chased away by crazed religious fanatics believing the devil has come to posses and destroy them.
Godric did his best to remain unnoticed whenever he passed thru muggle villages. Nonetheless he would always feel their watchful, suspicious, eyes upon him.
Salazar’s letter came within the week, just as the sun fell over the western horizon. His owl perched himself on the window frame, a noisy fellow unlike his master, who continued to tap his beak against the glass until Godric noticed. Though Godric took the letter, the small Barn Owl loudly screeched until he was given a mouse--a fair trade for such a long distance.
Its quite a feat for either of us to agree to something the other does or says. Its seems though out of anyone you are the only one in the village that believes me--against father’s protest I have succeeded in granting you permission to join me in the north. These Dark Sorcerers are not our only threat, the Anexus have also been spotted in the north. I will say no more until your arrival, but be on guard. I sense a shadow looming over our people.
Godric was instructed to wait another three days before his replacement arrived via Floo. One of father’s captains, Edward was a capable wizard who had much experience on the battlefield, however due to his recent injuries would have to adjust to a life in the village again.
Though Salazar offered to use a location spell to allow Godric to Apparate to him faster and easier, but the young brother declined, justifying the longer horse-back method as a means to gather any information he could prior to his arrival. To Salazar this was reasonable--in addition to not needed Godric right away, outside information and a new face may be useful.
Keeping from the main-roads Godric did well to avoid drawing attention, stopping at every other village so one spy could not bring warning to the next and devise a trap. Though the idea was enticing--a few swings at a witch or wizard (even a muggle would do) to elevate the boredom he experienced upon hours of riding. His buttocks had long-ago warn a perfect impression in his saddle which helped make the ride less uncomfortable.
At night he concealed himself in stone, a cave a wave of his wand created and hide before returning it to as it was upon departure the next morning. Using magic to create and then return--it reminded him of Avalon and her definition of alchemy. Was their magic truly so different that they must kill each other over it? Godric, alone to his thoughts, remembered the past; refusing to give up on their dream--creating a place where their children would not longer have to fight and die; a safe place to learn and develop magic without fear of persecution or execution. Such a thing...it is still possible.