A Champion's Soul

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Joshua: Rebirth, and a chance

There was a voice calling to me. “Well that was exciting!” When I opened my eyes there was a pale man sitting in a chair across from me. “Ah, good. How are you feeling?”

What… “Where am I?”

He frowned. “Well, you are in the land between life and death. Now, how are you feeling?”

… “I feel fine, I guess.”

The man rested his leg on his thigh and leaned in. “So, Joshua… That was a rather heroic death for a prince. I haven’t seen one quite like it for some time.”

Prince… “I’m not a prince.”

He leaned back. “You are a prince by blood, but not all princes ascend to royalty.”

Ok? “So, why am I here.”

He paused for a moment, then answered. “Well, you died.” He raised his hand and a glowing orb appeared in it. “This is your soul, you see it’s quite bright. This is what happens when a royal soul dies a hero’s death. It becomes a champion.”

And? “Why are you telling me this?”

He paused for another moment. “That is something I wonder as well. I reside over death, it is my duty to guide the fallen souls of the world to where they belong. If all life were to die out my purpose would be fulfilled. Though for some reason that does not appeal to me. Perhaps I have been doing this too long, or perhaps I’m a twisted being that enjoys death. That is for the mortals to decide.”

Ok… “So what’s going to happen to me then?”

He paused again. “Well, this is your second reincarnation of three. You are almost ready to be admitted into Elysium, you will be reborn once more.”

Oh? “Who was I before?”

He frowned. “Ah, I see you are still like the others. You were merely a soldier, you fell in battle protecting a small village from orcs. You had saved many lives that day.”

I guess that’s good. “What will happen when I’m reborn then?”

He smiled. “Now that is what I wanted to hear. You see, your soul is quite mighty… mighty enough to keep your memories from being erased in this life. Because of this I cannot do the usual rebirthing, for your third rebirth… I need you to perform a task for me. An important one mind you, but success is not the key to Elysium. Simply trying is enough.”

Doing a favor for a god. That doesn’t sound so bad actually. “What is it?”

He stood up from his chair and motioned for me to stand as well, I did. “I supposed you may not know of the many races of your world, the humans do a fine job at exterminating anything they do not believe to be worthy. There is an old race, Elves. Not these fantastical tiny elves mind you, proud power warriors. They fought hard, but their lifestyle simply couldn’t sustain the numbers humans were able to throw at them. I want you to try and restore them to glory.”

What?! “How am I going to do that!?”

He flashed my soul in front of me. “With this, a champions soul. With your rebirth you will be royalty again, but different. Eleven royalty, but there is a catch.”

Now I’m worried. “What’s the catch?”

He frowned. “The elves are an interesting bunch. They do not respect a king, rather a queen. Making you an eleven king would ultimately amount to nothing, I’m supposed to give you a chance after all.”

I DO NOT LIKE WHERE THIS IS GOING! “You’re not telling me…”

He interrupted me with a small chuckle. “My boy, it’s not as bad as you think. An Elven female does not suffer from the many things human women do. You will not have to anyone other than who you choose, you’ll simply have to deal with having breasts. When my brothers and I were young gods around your age we did many things with our powers, mostly for laughter, but nonetheless.” Nice dodge there.

I don’t really have much of a choice do I? “Do I have a say in the matter?”

He laughed again. “No, you do not. This will happen regardless of whether or not you want it to. The less you fight it the better.”

Dammit… “Then, can I ask a favor then?”

He hid my soul. “Well that is quite bold of you? I suppose so, what is it then? I cannot guarantee anything but I will listen to your request.”

I’ll ask then. “Can you protect my little sister then?”

He paused for a moment. “Hmm, that is an odd request. Why would you want that?”

My mind feels much clearer here… “I-I spent most of my life protecting here. I just don’t want it to be in vain.”

He paused again. “I can grant your request, but I think there may be a better option for this.”

There is? “What is it?”

He frowned. “She is on her third reincarnation, she has failed to amount to anything from her first to. Should she die a coward’s death again, she will be erased. If you wish I can let her live out the rest of her days in peace, but it will result in a coward’s death. Alternatively, I can grant her passage to Elysium, but at a cost.”

Seriuosly it’s that bad?! “What’s the cost!?

He waited a good ten seconds before answering. “You will be required to restore the Eleven kingdom, otherwise you will be erased in her place.”

I’ll do it… “Fine.” Even if I get erased, I’ve saved one person.

He snapped his fingers and Alice appeared next to us. She looked horribly confused but then saw me. “Joshua!!!” She ran up to me and hugged me.

The man interrupted the moment. “Now now, this is not the time for reunions. This boy has spared your soul child. Enjoy what he has given you.” She started fading away and I hugged her back before she vanished. “To the mortals she will have died of grief, but we know the truth. It was you that killed her, but at the same time saved her.”

I hope he actually did it then. “Okay, is my turn now?”

He smiled. “Yes it is. You will have all your memories of this life, use it to your advantage in the next. I will keep you safe for the first sixteen years of this new life. Nothing of interest will happen to you. Learn, train, try to anything to prepare yourself for what is to come. Most of all, good luck. I’d love to see the Elves return, they were always such an interesting race.

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