Mountain Sound

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Nightmare Season

The sun rises and I do my daily morning routine. Wash face, brush teeth, eat breakfast, exercise and then prepare myself for the quest. First, I came to my grandpa and told him that I'm going to use our ancestor's powerful weapon.

"That old one, Nathaniel?"

"The Mjolnir. Yes." I said.

My grandpa smiled at me, knowing why I needed it. "Good luck with that. It's kind of rusty now."

"I'll take care of it, grandpa. Thank you."

Later, while I'm waiting for the others, I'm reading my father's last journal after he disappeared along with grandpa's Gungnir. "Hey" Alexander ran towards me, carrying a large bag of magical items like spell books, orbs and potions. "It's about yesterday."

"What about it?" I asked.

"That girl... the cook. Do you know her name?"

"Caitlyn. Why?"

He stared at the ground, twiddling his thumbs. "I kinda saw her in my dream last night."

After hearing that cliché, I sighed. "Oh, great. Not this again. You always dream about girls, man. Remember Jennifer? Yeah! All men do that!"

"But this is not some kind of a normal dream. Don't you dare mention her."

"Sorry. I know how hard it is to lose her. Anyway, what do you mean?"

In his bag, he showed me his crystal orb. "It is more like a vision." He showed me the image of Caitlyn making an evil grin and flames blazing around her. Kingdoms under fire as she passed by. And the vision ends. I turned to him, puzzled by the images. "What does it mean?"

"I checked the guide book called Messages of the Future: A Guide to Translating Visions and Prophecies... after scanning the pages, I found this." He showed me the page where he read it. I'm reading it but he read it for me. "This person have a sadistic personality and can be a destroyer of all living things."

I paused and think about it. "A cook is a destroyer of all living things?"

"Yeah."

"That's crazy."

"What's crazy?" The girl from yesterday showed up with her backup and a set of frying pans hanging on it. "What are you guys talking about?"

"YOU!" The wizard pointed at her. "I had a dream about you!"

Her expression changed into confusion. "What?"

"Yes! You are surrounded with fire! You burn down kingdoms! You are a sadist! That's what the book said right here." He shows her the page and pressed it to her face. I felt embarrassed when people around us started to watch my friend berating her. "Alex, please stop. You are making a scene here."

"Alex?" The girl pushed the book back to the crazy wizard. "Who's that?"

My friend answered her. "That's my nickname." He then turned to me. "But I prefer to be called Alexander instead of Alex."

"What's wrong with Alex?"

"Alex sounds like a girl's name!" He was ticked off. Before anything gets worse, the girl ignored the wizard and turned to me. She then smiled at me like nothing happened. "I'm Caitlyn."

"Yep. I read your name yesterday. I'm Nathanial. And this is my friend..."

"Alexander" The wizard corrects me.

"Alexander. He's one of the top ten greatest Magicians in the Academy of Arts and Magic."

She looked at him from head to toe. "Top ten? Are you the first in the list?"

Alexander replied trying to stay cool. "Tenth, actually."

Then our big guy arrived along with the enchanted sword. He brought only a small bag and a rolled-up thick blanket. "How's your day?" The sword asked.

Kate answered him directly, "I'm good. Both of them are good to go." She points at us. "How about you? Are you ready?"

The large man stared at her for a moment making the strange atmosphere around us. I coughed to catch their attention. "Okay. Now, that we are all here. We should go now. Mount Lychinus is not far away."

"Wait!" Alexander stopped us. He points at the big guy. "What's your name again?"

"My name is Obliron Tagratte. And this big guy over here is my descendant Bartholomew."

I did my research last night. That name was from a warrior who trained three hundred soldiers with different fighting styles. And when his men were ambushed and killed, their souls and skills were transferred in this man who trained them. Few years later, he disappeared. I can't help it but ask the living weapon. "Are you the one the legends called the Oblivion Man?"

"Yes, I am." The sword said but added more things to make it clear. "Oblivion sounds obvious because of my name Obliron but I want my name to be like this: the Unstoppable Man."

"Oblivion sounds good to me." Caitlyn said.

"Thanks. Hey, did I ever tell you about the time my soldiers went to a beach party?"

Before he could tell us the story, I told them to start walking. "Let's go, guys. We must get to the foot of the mountain before sundown. You can tell us while we walk."

"No horses? Seriously?" Caitlyn asked us.

Alexander grinned at her. "Good luck."

But then, the mayor approached us unexpectedly brought four horses for us. His big fake smile annoys me every time. "Hello, Cornelius. How thoughtful of you to bring us your horses." I said sarcastically.

Cornelius laughed. "Of course. I'm a kind mayor. Good luck with your quest."

We took the horses and left town. We followed the road to the dark woods and took the path towards an abandoned castle on Mount Lychinus. We know the history of that place. There was once a king who lived there and has everything like gold and women. But his lust for more turned him insane. One day, he kidnapped a princess from foreign kingdom and forced her to marry him. The princess declined and the king was disappointed and murdered her brutally. The father of the princess heard the news about his daughter's demise. In rage, he sends all of his army to annihilate that castle and bring back the head the mad king.

And so they did.

Now the castle was just a ghost castle. No one lives there anymore just spiders, rats and other creepy insects.

While we travel, the talking sword asked me, "Why are we going to Mount Lychinus?"

"The mayor and the town want us to investigate that strange sounds coming from that mountain. They want to know if it's a dragon or an evil army coming to attack the town so that they can prepare to defend the town. How about you? Why do you want to be here?"

Obliron answered me. "Well, we want a job. My boy Bartholomew needs money to buy food for him only. If he has no food, he dies. And if he dies, I'll be a lonely soul inside this sword."

"Okay. How about you, Caitlyn?"

"I just want to go away."

"Because of that harassment that you mentioned yesterday?" I said. Alexander listened to our conversation. "Is that why you are here?"

"That's one of my reasons. My boss keeps on yelling at me that I'm no good that no one will ever be with me. But when I got good in cooking food, he ignores me and keeps on yelling at me to work faster. He doesn't even pay me! He just gave me a small piece of his big meal every night. His leftovers. The only time I steal from him is when I'm cooking. I take a piece of his meal enough to satisfy me. And he threatens all the boys who came to court me. It's like he owns me!"

"Did he do anything to you?"

"No. Not a single finger. He is just afraid that I will leave him. In his eyes, I'm just a tool for his business."

"Sorry about that." I said. Then she asked me, "Your turn, Nathan. Tell me about yourself and what are you carrying on your backpack?"

"Oh, this?" I showed her the weapon case with the insignia of a hammer. Inside is my ancestor's ultimate weapon, very rare. "This is a Mjolnir. It can pierce through shields and armor. Not even a troll's skin or a dragon's silver scale can withstand this rare power."

"Pierce? You mean that's not a hammer?" Caitlyn was very curious about my weapon.

But then the road started to get darker and darker. Colder and colder. Alexander, Obliron and I knew what's going on. Caitlyn shivered. "Whoa. The place is changing."

Immediately, I gave instructions to everyone. "Obliron, tell Bartholomew to start chopping a tree. Alexander, when the tree is down, start the fire. A big one. Caitlyn, stay close." I pulled out a lantern and lit it up.

"What's going on, Nathan?" She's confused and scared.

"We're making a perimeter."

"Why?"

"Nightmares are coming."

Alexander added. "It's their season. Time of the New Moon."

Caitlyn said, "I have never heard of these Nightmares before. What are they?"

"Creatures that lived in the darkness. Creepy crawlers." Obliron said as his body slammed repeatedly to the trunk of the tree. "We need to start a fire. Its light can protect us from them."

"What do they look like?"

"No one has ever seen one." I raised the lantern just to light up the place. I saw the darkness crawling towards us. "Hurry up, guys!"

Five second later, the tree's down and Alexander chanted a spell to ignite the large tree. We have successfully created a fire.

Big fire.

Big light.

The Nightmares can't get any closer. A tiny bit of light can hurt them. I can hear them hissing and growling in the darkness. "We're safe for now." I looked up to the sky. There were no stars and moon. Just thick dark clouds. Not just storm clouds or normal dark clouds. It's a supernatural cloud that only Nightmares can use. A very strong dark magic.

"What are going to do now?" Caitlyn asked us.

"Survive the night." I said. "Obviously."

"Then how are we going to eat? Has anyone bought some food to cook?" Caitlyn asked us. I shrugged.

So were Alexander and Bartholomew.

Now all eyes turned to Obliron.

The sword exclaimed, "Don't look at me! I'm a sword. I don't do groceries."

Caitlyn sighed. "So no one bought any food."

"I brought marshmallows!" The wizard raised a large pack of smooth and white marshmallows. His grin was wide like it can hold twenty large marshmallows.

"That's not a food. Those are sweets." She said.

"Sweets and food are the same." Alexander retorted.

"No. They are not."

"What are we going to do now?" Obliron cried, acting like a panicking child. How strange for a century old warlord to be scared like that. "There's no food! How can we find one?"

Alexander asked the enchanted sword. "You're a sword. How can you eat food?"

"I know I can't! I'm just worried about Bartholomew!"

Then I got an idea. "Everyone! Grab a torch."

The four of us took a torch and ran deeper in to the forest. The Nightmares followed us. Their feet pounded the ground like horses.

"Where are we going?" Alexander asked me panting as he run. "Do you really know where we are going?"

"Trust me, my friend." I replied.

After a minute of running, I heard the water rustling up ahead. It was the river! We're getting close. I looked down at the ground and saw the floor was moist, I called the team to stop. "We're here." Meanwhile, we heard the Nightmares stopped. Some slipped and fell to the river. Even in underwater, they were vaporized by the light of our torches.

"So, Caitlyn... can you fish?"


On the other side, far away from our location, Lord Vesra marched onward to us but his surroundings started to get colder and darker. He knew what's coming and he's not afraid.

"I really forgot about this. Come to me, you wretched void creatures!" He raised his spear, preparing himself for battle.

As the darkness approached him and swallowed him whole, he swung his mighty spear and fought those mysterious monsters head on.

He has no fear.

Just madness.

He doesn't need his sense of sight to fight those fast killers. He uses sound and touch. Unseen flesh were torn apart by his great spear. Bones breaking. Skulls cracked. And that's not even his.

Those Nightmares cannot touch him or even make a scratch.

Vesra enjoyed every single minute. Those screams delight him a lot. His thirst for blood drove him crazy. He swings his spear non-stop, slashing every limbs and flesh of the Nightmares.

"Is that all you got? Show me your true power!" Then he got what he wanted. A loud roar was heard just in front of him. He grinned at the void, knowing a large Nightmare walking towards him. He can feel the vibrations on the ground. He can identify how big and heavy was the creature. He knew he's going to have a lot of fun.

However, he has some important things to do. To end their fight, Vesra raised his spear and slammed its end to the ground, creating a powerful field of light energy. His almighty spear shined like the summer sun. Its light vaporized the Nightmares nearby. Others were wise to flee before the light touches them.

One man defeated the Nightmares.


Ten minutes later, we caught a large one this time. It was big that it can feed an entire family for a week if they have a good storage to avoid the food to be spoiled. Caitlyn cooked it for us. Once it was ready, we took a bite.

Bartholomew liked it.

I liked it too.

Alexander made faces, trying to hide his disappointment. Her cooking was so good that it made him regret about everything he said to her. My friend tried to apologize but he doesn't want to. He doesn't want to lose.

"What do you think?" She asked the wizard.

"Not so perfect. It's still average." Alexander gave his best review. "It's... it's fine."

"So you like it?"

"If this is a culinary exam, you've passed."

I chuckled, watching my friend reacting like that.

From afar, a lady with glimmering jewels around her wrists and neck spotted us across the river with her strange torch. She saw us eating our meal and my wizard friend acting weirdly. "Hikers. Damn those fools."

"What did you see, my dear sister?" A man appeared from behind like a shadow.

"Hikers, brother. Four of them."

"Oh, don't worry, my dear sister. Leave them to me."


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