The Hero's Apprentice

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Ch. 19 Ryes’ Experiments

Back in Andor village Rye was heading in the dead of night to the village to spy out any information he could find on red wizards. He was surprised to find the village in an uproar of celebration. Rye wasn’t too concerned for the food and dancing so he just concealed himself and listened to the babblings of both elder and drunkard. Apparently Walter had vanquished Ryes’ little spell and had saved the village. Rye didn’t listen much after that, nor did he care because it meant Walter had escaped this place, and had suffered very little from the hex vine. Rye did spy out the place to see where Walter had been and found that Walter had indeed left the vicinity. Rye was sure Walter had tried to go home. So it was only a matter of following his scent, then he’d be in the same place as Walter. But then Rye had second thoughts and decided it was time to attack Walter directly. The environment had failed, so it was time to get Walter himself. Sure Walter had one little spell that evaded Ryes’ knowledge, but two could play at that game.

Rye stayed in Andor for many weeks formulating a new spell that would make him more than a match for Walter. Since the vine had failed, Rye decided it needed to be something less limited by the environment. Even if Walter altered the realm it would still prove threatening and powerful. Rye wouldn’t test such dangerous spells on himself so he decided he’d have to have a few test subjects. He’d have to take them back of course, erase their memories, and try again the next day. Otherwise there’d be a string of disappearances and a man hunt for him eventually.

It was long and boring waiting for night to come so Rye could kidnap the local beggar or some village drunk but he did it successfully, and soon was having regular test sessions each night. It was draining at first, so Rye allowed himself two days to replenish his magic, and then one night of testing spells. The weeks were nothing to Rye because each spell he tried got better and better. And yes they did spiral out of control sometimes but Rye was up to the challenge of untying the knots he made. In the end Rye had a few spells that began to show promise. Spells that made subjects more animal like and beastly. Others that made the subject magic proof in very creative and specific ways. Even ones that made the subject ethereal and border between life and death. Let’s see Walter take on these things when we meet again? Ryes’ final spell was an enlargement one and he planned to use this one on himself if the subject showed no side effects, and if the spell was reversible. If it wasn’t, Rye might never return to normal and he didn’t want to have to change his lifestyle. He was trying to get his old one back. When Rye used a spell he made sure to use the same subject. Otherwise multiple spells would conflict with each other and make the subject harder to control and subdue. So Rye had to kidnap a new victim that night. When the testing was done the subject grew to fifty feet in height. And Rye after much effort got him back to his original size. Rye was satisfied and prepared to leave Andor and go get Walter. He found the spot Walter had left, and though it had been weeks used it to find Walters scent and current location so he would be taken there. Walter had been gone without Rye for some time. Rye wondered what he might be up to. But he would soon know.

Rye left Andor doing things that would forever immortalize the students at Krell academy. While Rye assumed his subjects had been useful and completely restored by his mastery. To the villagers the list of incidents became longer and longer. Villagers became monsters, and their bites infected others with the same warped magic. Creatures yet to be identified acquired fierce names and began terrorizing the village and soon the neighboring realms. The villagers pleaded with Krell and those who had only just begun to understand the first three principals to protect them and do something to combat the new dark forces. The stress to study magic grew many fold those past few weeks. Krell and the others who took up the mantle soon made names for themselves killing ghastly creatures of all sorts of descriptions. When the elements failed to kill every kind of beast. Krell and his fellow learners combined them and mixed them to create new spells and new techniques. Eventually they even went as far as to enlist soldiers who were imbued with magical weapons, and elixirs designed to assist in eliminating the demons and ghouls. Krell and the academy became renowned throughout the realm for being able to stamp out these nightmares that didn’t seem to have spawned from any known source they could find or locate. But Krell and the students remembered the green hero who had risked his life to save their village and were confident that if he showed up he’d be trying his best just as they should. It was their village anyway, so they felt even more obligated to protect it than have some stranger do it for them. Sadly though, many neighboring kingdoms did not have such luxuries as Andor did and so Krell and his students found themselves being called to near and far away lands to deal with the problems that others had admitted they couldn’t solve themselves. But the tales brought courage to the other lands. Soon Krell had his own tales to tell along with the green hero. Ven managed to solve the giant problem by learning spells to attack the mind in specific. Krells sons Sed, Gaf, and Tre became exceptionally famous for learning how to slay beasts through the use of enchanted silver, potions, and not stopping at killing the pests, but studying them and learning how to cure them without using lethal force.

They wrote down their adventures and what they had learned and soon the academy had an extensive library from which remedies, spells, and cures were copied and sent to the nearby lands to assist them whenever a disturbance lurked in the area. Ando became a safe haven for the rest of the realm. Many sent their children there to study if only for a short while. By the time Krell was a grandfather most of the creatures that now were well known to both villager and wizard were frequent, but not feared the way when they first appeared. The knights had trained themselves to deal with these abominations. And the wizards were encouraged to get field experience since it was a hope of theirs one day to rid themselves of every last monster that inhabited the vicinity. Through it all the people of Ando wondered about the evil that had entered the realm. And how just as the green hero had told them long ago to prepare and protect themselves from future attacks, his advice had saved them yet again even without his being there himself. Krell sorrowed that the hero was nowhere to be found, and on his deathbed entrusted his sons and their sons to keep pursuing for that great wizard who was surely protecting them somehow someway with magic that would eventually rid the realm of every wicked atrocity that came to destroy them and their childrens’ children. Krell died never getting to see the green hero again. But his sons worked dutifully to keep the academy a place of protection and learning, and prepare themselves if the green hero should ever return and give them more help than he already had.

Their tales of bravery and sorcery inspired many to become knights who wielded the weapons of Ando, or mages who went about scouting and protecting the realm from the forces of evil. Always Krells’ sons pointed to how important it was to serve and protect the weak and pursue strength in defense of the defenseless. They were troubled times, but the mages kept studying and the knights kept training, and eventually the realm slowly regained peace, one victory at a time.

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