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-Chapter Four. “Danger is lurking in the dark.”-

I entered the Auma Cove after spending the past five minutes running back to it from the tower I was at previously around the cliff. Luckily, it had a dip that I walked up easily. I brushed dads dagger to make it a short sword and sheath it fluidly on my back. This time though I find a map conveniently placed on top of the wooden chest with a note saying.

“Here’s a map, look around the areas that you might want to check out; there’re lots of creatures lurking though some of these creatures are very dangerous, be careful. Get used to the Drungeredge around you. This is our world so enjoy a little hospitality of the cities.”

I looked at the map in a more attentive way, memorizing some areas, finally deciding that although the castle and city; I saw last time I was here was very tempting to go see, I picked the nearest dangerous creatures’ lair. I saw it was marked with a dark red “X”. I feel as though I’m in need of some anger management so I set off at a nice jog towards that area. I realize my speed of jogging feels, how should I put it, easy.

Like I am light-weight as a feather, so starting to jog faster through the trees grabbing branches above me, monkeys swing in the deeply forested area flipping forward in a quick motion stopping where I landed.

Checking the map, but I’m quite far from where I’m headed. I guess I’m not up to par because of this day’s magick use, although I’m happy I can stand my first time in the Drungeredge hurt me and drained me of all magick energy.

Now it feels right like I belong here rather than almost dying from creatures, or magick energy, and even life force energy running completely out. I start a light fast jog to preserve my magick for battle.

“I wonder how long I’m able to be in the Drungeredge for.” Is the question that comes to mind wanting to know how long I can stay here and the time it takes in the real world versus the Drungeredge.

I enter the area surrounding a few minutes later of the creature’s lair checking the map to make sure I’m close to it, but it’s pretty obvious seeing through the trees a large cave that has an iron door on the front of it.

I stop looking at my map and hit a tree for cover very quickly because I hear a clicking noise, glancing around the tree I see a tall, dangerous looking beast guarding the entrance come out from the side of the cave starting to stand there clicking and scanning the area around. I can only describe the beast as very muscled with long dark hair. His face has pitch black fish-like eyes with a lengthwise mouth which goes up where its nose should be.

It has teeth that are like daggers which goes on clicking together when it looks around scanning the area again. “He must be a guard. This creature is smarter than the goblins.”

Thinking to myself as I notice more about the creature from what I can see it is covered in thick black fur that spikes up around its neck like a lion’s mane leading down to a thin cloth robe, also spotting from the position i'm at. That it has a saber like sword hooked on the hilt. My heart starts beating faster at the thought of dealing with the beast. “I can almost bet there is more inside the cave.

I doubt I’d be able to take on more than one.” I think to myself as I take cover behind the tree once again, but I snap a twig at my feet by accident. “Hell..” I thought as I heard the clicking grow close to where I’m hiding.

“It must have heard the twig snap from this far away how!?” I keep as still as possible, but my heart begins pumping adrenaline into my veins. “Looks like i’m going to have to fight it, or run.” Pushing the thought of fighting from my mind I hear the clicking very close now that I can almost hear its footfalls by the tree.

I try to move away into the bushes, but suddenly a sword strikes almost taking my head off into the tree. I jump back whispering. “Fight it is.” I spin away from the tree drawing my short sword from its sheath. The creature lets out a loud yowl and a flurry of clicks revealing its whole throat that is lined with teeth from five feet away.

I was backing away from the creature and a chill went down my spine. It goes to slash again in my direction, but I pull up my short sword to block it seconds before it would have taken off my arm. The ring of metal on metal hits my ears. “Whoa, oh god I’ve never been in real combat besides the small easy targeted goblins.”

Thinking in panic at the feel of the strength behind the blocked sword blow. It raises back again fast swinging with vicious force downward trying to get my chest I back away just in time to get a small gash on my chest.

“His blade must be sharp to cut through my chain mail like butter!” I think as I step back more steps feeling warm blood flow down my chest. “I’m outmatched. This thing is too strong. I’ve got to kill it somehow, no chance of running now!” I slash at him twice, but it easily back-steps clicking angrily with its movements.

Letting out a grumbling growl from its depths running at me holding its saber sword over its head trying to deliver a death blow. “Oh no!” Seconds before the sword hits a voice pushes its way into my mind and I hear it say feeling the blood leak from my chest wound. “Use the blood from your wound and say “hemobuleh”, hold up your palm and use your blood, feel it draw from your wound and say that word young one.” I raise my hand in the time it hits full force and I yell loudly.

“Hemobuleh!” My eyes turn red and I feel the blood leave my chest wound then fly through the beasts skull right between its black eyes in the shape of a blood red needle form. The thing crumbles into a heap on the ground with one last. “Click, click.” I hear the blood needle stick into a rock not far from us leaving a hole the blood dissolves its form running down the rock like wet paint staining it red.

“What was that! Aickem didn’t say there is blood magick just ones based on the elements. It did not weaken me like the fire magick and my wound..” Touching my chest where the slash was sealing up without blood flowing from it not fully healed it has a small hole with a little blood leaking.

Before I can worry further I hear deep grumbling yowls and clicking coming from the caves entrance the door slams open. “Oh crap i’ve got company!” I say to myself as I turn to run three of those things exit the entrance clicking in fury. I yell. “Hemobuleh!”

Raising my palm a small amount of blood leaves my wound flying from the palm of my hand where I aimed it gathering to form the needle, and sinking itself in the nearest beats chest it howls in pain clenching its chest dropping to its knees with various clicks.

One of the beasts drops next to the one on its knees letting out a low yowl the other continues covering ground towards me, but as it gets ten feet from me sword drawn. I turn running with as much energy in my legs as they would handle. I’m back into the Auma cove soon far away from the strong beasts. My heart beats fast as I awaken to it being very late in the middle of the night my chest is killing me. I pull off my shirt to find just a big purple bruise.

“Wow in the Drungeredge it was a milometer deep gash now it’s just a bad bruise amazing!” I glance at the clock relaxing to the thought of being back in normal reality. I slip out of bed to put on the clothes i’m going to wear, but before I get dressed I notice something is different. On my desk where I left the egg there are light scorch marks.

“What does he do while i’m in the Drungeredge; because that one time it was shaking and making loud noises it got a crack on its shell. I’ll have to ask Aickem.” I think to myself as I touch the egg to quickly pull back my fingers seconds after. “It is so hot i'm afraid it will catch fire any minute. i’ll have to cool it somehow.”

Holding up my hand I concentrate and draw the heat from the egg into my palm and absorb it. For the remainder of my time till school. I dozed since it was early in the morning. I had no dreams or more Drungeredge time once the clock read seven o clock in its deep red numbering and went off calling its annoying alarm.

I get up to find the house empty, mom usually leaves at five so I got the house to myself till I have to run to my bus stop. I quickly grab breakfast to have something to do. Then pop on my headphones, and go to the stop by the sign outside my house down the block. I relax a little to my music before the bus shows up.

I climb into my spot on the bus soon. I’m walking into my first hour thinking the same thing as I did yesterday. “Ugh math.” We dive into some equations a couple classes later i'm in history. Which was interesting.

We talked about Indian tribes and Indian clans and how they started this was way more interesting than yesterday’s lesson. While taking notes I still get that itchy feeling of being watched, but I brush it off as being paranoid.

It is my second day no need to think I’m being watched, but Sophia did have her eyes trained on me the entire class time blushing. The next class is science which was full of an extra portion of boring today. Except I met this nice guy named Tristan.

He’s a year older than me so he’s an upperclassman. Saying if I need help understanding the mathematical science questions. “He’s the man with the plan.” He seemed nice, but something was a little off about him. The bell rang as he was getting into a conversation with me about this European band he enjoys.

I grab my books, but as I’m walking out I hear a low whisper like a soft voice say. “Hey, you, hey!”And I felt it fade away like a shadow on the wall. Something had been left behind as I looked at my desk.

I almost drop my books as I see a note on my desk. I quickly grab the note pocketing it fast. I go out into the hall to have a mini heart attack Sophia is right there against the wall like she’s been waiting for me.

I turn to walk away acting like I didn’t notice her, but she walks up to me saying. “Hey Jordan can you walk me to my next class?” I say. “Well what has been going on with you?”

We proceed down the hall. I look her over not checking her out but with worry as a friend if she’s doing okay. She says. “No, I’ve had no energy lately, too much to do these days and one of my friends are ignoring me.” getting the hint it might have been me I walk and talk to her. Telling her how i’m making new friends at this new high school.

Rather than being home schooled any longer it’s different though we are childhood friends in our childhood we made a promise that we would be good to one another. Just reminding her I care alot about her, I hug her tightly before she goes into her class. A couple girls giggle at us as they walk by. I blush as she says “Thank you for cheering me up!”

Leaving me standing in the hall feeling insecure. “Dang better run to class.” As the second bell rings I rush to my next class gym, one of my favorites. The gym workout and activities are easier than I remember but it gets hard when we lift weights. I’m sweating profusely by the time the gym class is over and Max talked about upcoming video games movies and hot girls I ask him.

“What have your first days of highschool been like?” He says in response. “Hard time finding classes and making new friends in middle school was easy compared to the work they give us now it’s so tough.”

I look at him and say. “Yeah a lot of changes nowadays.” Soon I’m on the bus to sit in my seat. I pull out the note that I found earlier in history class it says creepily.

“You’re going to die.“

Chills run down my arms, back, and neck. I put in my headphones just ignoring it shoving the note into my pocket, but at the back of my mind. I feel an itch, an opening which I’ve begun to call. “in tune.”

I ignore it because I just think I’m being crazy to think I can hear things in my mind. Every moment I think this I relive the violent battles so far and the pain. I felt in and out of Drungeredge, thinking to myself.

“Also me killing them I wonder where they went when they die?″ I’m going to ask Aickem today where people go when they die in or out of Drungeredge. Getting off the bus and walking to my house I lock the door just to be sure and pull out the note again seeing the rest it simply says. “I’m coming after you soon and fires will lead the way until your whole family burns in flame. Punk.”

I shiver in fear more because I hear a voice in my head say. “Someone is going to die, kid.” Maybe it’s just a joke. I go out the back door to get my bike on the side of the house knowing mom will be gone until ten o’clock. I got seven hours to use to my fullest.

I make it to the warehouse unlocking it using a very small amount of energy. I see Aickem in the middle of the circle doing this maneuver looking tai chi. “I think what scares me is not what I see him doing tai chi maneuvers, but the energy aura around him a meter off his body it is the most energy i’ve seen or first time i’ve seen coming off anything so far off their body.” He replies.

“Well you see you’re special most people that are beginning to get into the magickcraft, and to be an Auma they usually do not see auras this early. that is what the energy comes off my body. also have you heard anything lately not from a person’s mouth like whispers in your mind?” I am shocked by the question of the standing stone cold chills Aickem continues.

“I can see it in your eyes. What day did it leave something behind?” I pull out the note handing it to him with amazement at my teacher for how easy I am to be read like a book. I start to tell him about the moment in class in detail. “I met this guy named Tristan and when class ended I went to leave and I heard something say. “Hey, you hey?” Then the note appeared on my desk.

I didn’t read it until I got home. His eyes scan the ominous words they widen a little then glance at me as if asking for more; I continue on saying. “Then I met Sophia in the hall. We walked to her next class and I went about my day. until I got on the bus and went up to my usual spot and I heard in my head. “Someone is going to die, kid”

“It sent chills up my spine what do I do Aickem?” He responds quietly. “Ignore it and don’t let him destroy your morale.” I see in his green eyes thoughts racing around in his wisdom filled mind.

He finally after a few minutes which felt like an eternity began to speak again. “I think it’s time you learn more, about the Drungeredge and why the bones are after you soon one will step forward to fight you, and these whispers are from the bones connecting to the world here. To torment you each bone has a guardian that must be childish and wants to play with your mind to see if you’re weak.”

He stops to see what I have to say, but I just think. “Oh no, now will I have to fight a trained killer.” As if reading my mind he says. “Do not worry, your growing more and more powerful by the day and they can only get you in the Drungeredge, but this may take awhile to explain so take a seat and close your eyes and enjoy the show i’m going to show you though my mind just try to go out of body, and intune so you can see.” He sits me in a chair. “Explain something through his mind hows that possible”

I think as I feel a sudden push into my mind so I sit down cross legged closing my eyes and before my mind a fire appears first a spark. I hear a calm voice say echoing almost to me.

I hear Aickem say. “Jordan open your eyes.” bestowing me the knowledge i stand opening my eyes. finding a fire lit around my figure, no burning or pain it just happened like suddenly my heritage showed itself to the world. “Now you know who of your descendants the eight, now seven fathers of the Drungeredge you come from, yet the darkness one betrayed them, but that story is for another day. It is eight o clock time to train you how to control this flame you produced in your euphoria because it will not go out for a while if you do not put it out yourself!”

I reply. “So what do I do? I don’t want to accidentally set my friends on fire.” He looks at me as if knowing my worry about hiding these powers, but deep down no one could understand what is happening to me. “Maybe another Auma would understand.” I think to myself. I then stand and try to think of a way to put these flames out. I think of the atoms slowing, but I feel a major drain from me. I almost collapse Aickem quickly says. “Speak to it calmly as if you would, a friend doesn’t try to control it like that too soon for that. Do not manipulate it like an enemy.”

I, then breathe out through my nostrils slowly and say in a weak voice. “Come to my hand please, and go out to calm my fires.” As if like magick which it was, the fire leaps to my palm then disappears into the palm of my hand; I look at Aickem with amazement he smiles proudly.

“You’re making progress to control it like a friend. Your energy is very static you are going to get collapsing episodes when your energy is not focused. You need to meditate on how to focus your energy. In the Drungeredge you will be able to use your power with ease, but here it’s going to tire you until your egg hatches; Because your feeding off your own energy now show me a fireball.” He says with excitement as he says this he stamps the ground of a rune.

A figure appears with its hollow look where you see through it until it opens its mouth baring its teeth like a beast. I step back scared it tries to run at me with claws shining, but it hits an invisible area it turns seeing Aickem, but hits another invisible area it starts seething in anger looking between us. “I’m going to let down the barrier in five seconds prepare yourself!”

As if it knows the thing faces me ready as I yell “No!” Fire exits my arms surrounding my forearms. “I will not let it get to me. Why must you put me in a rock and a hard place” He responds before dropping the barrier. “Because you must progress fast, young one, we have no time to play games.”

It begins to come at me. I lift my arm and try to focus, but it’s too fast on top of me in seconds, snarling and biting with its teeth as I hold it back with one flaming arm as its claws go for my throat I yell. “Stop! Fire burns this thing’s head now!” The fire leaves my arms and engulfs its head. The hollow see through creature lets out a scream and vanishes.

The scream still fresh in my ears Aickem says. “Good, but you need to calm your anger there is more power when you are calm young one.” He stamps the ground again saying.

“I prepared ten of these Blaxors for you to train on each stronger than the last” Another appears where he stamped his foot trapped like last time behind an invisible field. This time I try to breathe, but adrenaline seethes throughout me, but i’m more focused almost calm enough to use the magic. “Come to me fire?” I say aloud and the warmth pools in my left palm Aickem lets down the barrier and time almost slows down as my adrenaline hits full steam.

I lift my arm and I feel a release. There is a wail exiting the creature as the thing starts for me the flame expands as I say. “Firerea’lu” I know what I said because it in my head calls back calmly echoing throughout my mind like in the Drungeredge the word I used turns the flame a deep red as it collides with the Blaxor it is engulfed from the chest up in seconds there is no scream because I say “Demo’vu’fla.” It’s flaming head vanishing with a blue flame dripping to the floor like blood.

With the Blaxor dead Aickem says “Wow those words you used were not used so precisely, but nice flame transformations. The red flame was mixed with your blood from that scratch wound then you super-heated the iron to make blue flame, Oh by the way your bleeding pretty bad healing yourself would be a good idea that since now you know about blood magick combined with fire.”

I look down to see my arm had be scratched and my chest wound from last night had opened up. It roses along my shirt in blood falling down I feel my body is like jelly. “I’m drained.” I think to myself falling down as the world turns into a haze everything seems darker Aickem rushes to my side holding out something in his hand its berries from somewhere.

“They are from the tree eat them slowly.” Aickem says following with “Bite down on them they will make your tongue blue for a hour or two oh! That rhymed how clever. Enough training for today the berries will bring enough energy to get you home its eight thirty now.”

I take the berries and one at a time and they have a gooey center that is sweet I feel a warmth spread from my stomach to my toes and fingertips. I slowly stand and remember aloud. “I forgot my egg. I need a clearer mind i’m forgetful any suggestions Aickem?“ He replies.

“You could meditate and relax more let things as you people say ride or smooth out. That’s what’s happening now, bro?” I state back laughing “Aickem, stay old when you speak that was weird I will try to chill out that’s what we people say ‘Chill out’, and I feel where it is though like i’ll always know its location I care about my egg more than myself, but I distance it because i’m just afraid.” He responds quickly in wonder.

“Why afraid?” I respond choosing my words to express how I feel. “There is so much change going on in my life because of being an Auma and I barely understand it. I don’t know what to do with myself, but to grow up fast and try to cope with killing in the Drungeredge that’s the hardest part and using magick makes me realize that a lot is going to be different when the egg hatches. What will I be then? What will the world look like through the eyes of an average teenage boy?” Aickem responds well spokenly.

“Well just view the world the same as it does not make you a lesser person to deal with such a big change as you get older and become wiser and stronger things will become more clear to you there will always be change young one, always; I will educate you the best I can so that after I leave you one day to your own journey you can think on your own, defend yourself, and hopefully if the prophecy is correct defeat the dark king! Now come back tomorrow, have some fun in the Drungeredge tonight, go visit a city you will love, “The Kingdom of the Fireheart ”, there are some beautiful things there.

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