The Chains that Bind

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Three thoughts

The human fleet sailed towards the Elven Island with Siegfried standing on the deck. He stared out into space and listened to the waves crash onto the ship. He clenched his grip on his sword hilt, and he began to let his thoughts wander.

15 years ago.

Siegfried stood on the deck of the lead ship as his forces sailed towards the Elven Island. He was the king of the world, and no one was going to take it away. The small human fleet was loaded with only the best and bravest men, and a handful of cannons that had been repaired by the human blacksmiths.

This was the biggest move he had made towards the elves, but he wasn't going to have his people live in fear of attack from the elves. It was his job to protect his lands and his people, and if taking the fight to the elves protected them, then so be it.

He reached up and gently rubbed the scar that his wife had left on his face. The scar's physical pain was gone, but the emotional pain…..the look on Mael's face when she attacked him…..it still burned. He felt a bit of anger well up inside of him.

Mael would be nothing without him! She was simply a girl who was in trouble and without him she would have been killed by those trolls….He became a king for her, and made her a queen!

Siegfried briefly thought of the old man who had told him to let her die, and wondered what would have happened if he had let her die, it seemed that the war was happening anyway.

Could I have prevented it?

Siegfried shook himself away from thoughts of the past. He couldn't change the past events anyway; all that mattered was the future, and the safety of his people. He had done more that the late King Merek ever could. His lands were united, and the black tide had been destroyed. Gold was pouring into the city, and his people loved him. All he needed to do was keep this peace safe, and he had to fight one more war to do so.

Siegfried smiled. His troops were going to take on the elves and make this world safe for all eternity.

He turned and walked back to his cabin letting his mind clear, because once he exited his cabin; his mind would be clouded by the fog of war.

Present

Mael stood in her palace and watched the sky, seeing the human sails come ever closer to her territory. She then looked down into the courtyard and smiled as her forces prepared the island for invasion. The elven forces prepared barricades, spiked pits, and oil traps. Wolves lurked around their owners' legs and catapults, trebuchets, and racks of arrows were prepared, ready to be set on the humans.

She thought back to the past, wondering if she was doomed to repeat it.

15 years ago:

Mael stood in her palace, she didn't know why but for some reason she kept the island on high alert. Thankfully the elves didn't question her decisions; after all she was their new queen. The elven forces were preparing for war, and it made Mael think about what her husband had said to her when she had attacked him.

He said something about a war….and stopping it.

She wondered what would have happened if she had died that day. Would the world be better, would all these events be different?

She shook herself away from the past thoughts; she couldn't change the past anyway, even if she wanted herself dead. All that mattered was the future and the future consisted of defending her people.

The elves couldn't live in isolation anymore, all they could do was keep the peace, and all they had to do was fight one more war.

She walked back to her bed and slept peacefully, letting her dreams float through a clear mind, because when she awoke her mind would be clouded by the fog of war.

Every single character that was about to collide was about to enter the fog of war, but one character was already within the fog.

Somewhere deep in a mountain a shadowy figure walked towards the bound and gagged figure of the old man.

The old man was battered, bruised, and sickly looking and thick strands of black magic bound him. But his eyes still shone with a dim light as he glared daggers at the figure.

"You!"

The old man coughed and hacked as the figure chuckled darkly

"You corrupted my magic and killed that elven queen! You gathered the black tide, and you wiped the dwarves from the earth!"

The figure stepped forward to reveal himself to be a man, he was tall and covered in scars, with his face obscured by a hood.

"I did nothing" His thin lips curved into a smile. "But serve my master. The war between the humans and the elves will sweep away any resistance to the arrival and the rule of my master and his legions."

The figure walked across the old man "You were the only one who posed a threat to my master, and you even tried to stop the events that I made occur. You are powerful old man, but not at all strong enough."

"The natives of this world are too caught up in their petty dramas, which makes them easy to manipulate. Those who could be manipulated were, and those who couldn't were destroyed."

The old man closed his eyes, trying to dredge up hope for himself "This world still has heroes!"

"Hah, these heroes you speak of aren't strong enough to stop what is coming! They have a war of their own to fight. Any who survive will be swept aside like leaves before my master's might."

The old man closed his eyes as the magic strands around him burned his skin with dark power.

"Sleep old man, when you awake it will be to a better world."


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