EarthBorn: First Days

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Puzzle Pieces

First Day 8th Quarter

Legion Wayke and Maidon come to the outside courtyard, they break up and head down different paths seeking out their answers. Maidon heads down a bustling wide path cobbled and rough laid long ago, her beauty attracts the eyes of more then just men, the children allured to her glowing flowers and striking tall physique, the path leads to the central plaza alive as much as it is in day, she enters a trading square shut up for the night they celebrate an occasion, fires roar people laugh flaunt and flail around the market square to flutes and drums all is at peace, Maidon lost in melodies wanders into the centre of the square, taken by glee of such a sight she has never seen a thing so joyful, flower petals and illuminated confetti float in the lifting breezes, lovers and blood relatives embrace in dances of energy holding each other like it was their last chance to, Maidon, in her own bubble fixated she has failed to realise the melodies died out and she stands alone all has stopped, gaze upon this goddess from afar the people do the dance floor emptied shrouding her in loneliness, she stands glowing nervous shades a fine centre piece of rare beauty an artists dream, she hugs herself in low esteem and begins to leave the square...“PLEASE WAIT!”... a man breaks free from the circle, he walks straight up to the lonely young lady he sees before him , his head lifts , the guard who took her weapons at the gate has now come to rescue her from shame...he stands before her looking straight into her eyes, with a sharp sudden move he honourably bows to the mobs surprise offering Maidon his hand to Maidon as invitation...after a brief pause she apprehensively takes his hand much to the mans delight, the music begins once again and the festivities restart in glorious fashion ,Maidon is whipped around the dance floor her partner proficient in the art of dance he guides her steps for song after song, the man now comfortably in control initiates’ gentlemanly conduct...

‘’Would it be bold of me to ask your name girl?’’ ...she answers through the shared laughs among them the dance space now filled up again...

‘’Maidon, my name is Maidon, and yours is?’’...

’’I am Airon ”...they continue to dance around the square with the man leading a stiff and rhythm less Maidon through the simple steps around the cobbled square again and again, the folk laugh and seem to relax now they see she is no different to themselves at heart, she takes the moment to ask something of her new interest...”would you like to show me around your home? I would love to see more of your culture!”... he is powerless to refuse, he nods smiles and continues to grace Maidon with dance steps taking her away from the crowds attention, he takes her by the hand and pulls her free from the ecstatic prancing natives who celebrate so well...

Wayke comes out and sees a guard walk into some shrubbery and out of sight an un cobbled mud path beaten down by years of marching no grass grows on it, the edge of the keep it is quiet with nobody roaming around except the few night guards on watch patrolling the darkness ever awake, a wooden palisade tipped by two flames comes out of the night dews that rise from the moistened ground, each gate door footed with matching sentries waiting still as statues for any who wander too close...

’’Good evening, I am here as a guest of the shepherds and I was assured I would be able to speak with your captain”... the guards stand to attention and bellow out aloud...

‘’STRANGER AT THE FRONT FOR CAPTAIN GORE’’...Wayke nods in appreciation and steps through the now creaking palisade door that parts open...

“Thank you friend, the name is Wayke, just so you know for the future”...the guards stamp and stand to attention as the gate closes behind I’m, Wayke wanders forward into the barracks , Light canvassed structures encircle a dusty centre with tripods of spears standing dug into the training surface ready to be taken to battle, the men are sitting in small circles around fires talking and laughing outside their pitched shelters they gamble wares and await their next call to arms, the far side is the captains quarters clear to tell from the flag of arms that waves alone outside bearing a scuffed emblem, Wayke heads straight in not waiting for an invitation the men too nervous to stop him, the Pitch is large and circular it holds all the comfits befitting of a high rank thought tatty and worn, Captain Gore stands staring down around a map of the land laid atop a table with two warriors either side in council with him....

’’Captain Gore? I hope I am not disturbing you?”...the men stand interrupted yet say nothing, they just stand tall and say nothing at all so Wayke continues on...” I thought I would take this opportunity to see what the situation is, you know from your point of view?”...Gore may be of an ancient stock but he is no fool to intelligence...” Ha, you mean your commander wants you to see how poor a state we are in?”...Wayke submits in grin...”Its ok stranger , I would be doing the same if I were you that’s for sure”...Wayke smiles in compliments...”These are my lieutenants.”...Gore turns to his left and presents a tall slim well armoured man shaven and hair of long black , he bows half way to Wayke in respect but does not speak greeting....

’’This is lieutenant Charge, he is our steed master”... Wayke nods back in respectful manner as the Captain now moves his hand to present the large intimidating figure to his right...

’’And this is Anuk star, chieftain to the Hillsiders , the mountain people, one of the more gifted peoples we have available to us.”...He steps into the light grunting a native greeting, his left eye scarred through and his olive skin doused in tribal red war paint feathers of rarity tied into his locks only on the left of his scalp, the right half shaven down, his muscular exterior tells a thousand tales of struggle and combat...

“I am Honoured Anuk star”...the captain walks to the table in the far left which has the knights weapons atop...

‘’So...Wayke...where did you get weapons like these, they are...unusual, to say the least? The men were trying to use them but could just about lift them let alone wield them’’... Wayke does not intend to stir feelings...

“They were forged from our planets core by the first 12, handed down to only the most trusted and dedicated...they do not work with any hand but our own”...

’’o right....planets core aye? how exactly do they work then?”...Gore says swinging the hilt of Runes sword with relative difficulty...

’’If you are ever seen as worthy then perhaps you will find out one day...but not this day, this day we talk”... The captain grins and returns to the table....Wayke gets to the purpose of his disturbance...

’’what is the military situation captain Gore, how many men have you to bare?”...

‘’We had eight thousand total, we lost one and a half thousand the dusk before present, that means we have six five and a half thousand left to bare,, cavalry we have’’...Gore looks to Charge...

‘’ one thousand man and beast’’ ....He tells them...

’’Hillsiders we have seven hundred and fifty warriors and I can’t account for those spread across the lands as we have seen no one for a long while know we’ve had no word for 3 sky change now”... Wayke looks down to look at the Map of the lands that lay in front of him...”Where are the enemy strongholds as i cannot see them on this here map”...The captain pulls a face and reluctantly answers shamefully....

‘’we do not know, we have never known they come to us!’’...

‘’you don’t know where your enemy lay rest?’’... Wayke asks confused and baffled...

’’It is too dangerous to send out scouts they never come back, the beasts alone are too much for scout numbers and I can’t commit enough men without leaving us open here, all we know is that they are somewhere far into the north where the lands run dark, in this region here”...Captain Gore points to a huge scar in the earth painted black far to the north of their keep, no landmarks or points of view the map heavily inked over in black...

“Thank you captain, I will retire and leave you to your duties, you have been most hospitable”...He bows to the three native men turning to leave unexcused, lieutenant Charge is baffled by Wayke and before he makes it outside calls put to Wayke...

“ Do you not want or need to know enemy number or strategy?!’’... Wayke stops but does not turn back to face the men... “We can only attain victory by annihilating the enemy, it does not matter what they can do what form they take or how many they are, we must win no matter what”... he continue his exit leaving the three standing at the table they walk to the door and watch, Wayke stops in the dirt at a tepee of spears looking them up and down, he runs his finger across the killing edge and down the rough unfinished shaft of bloodstained wood before wandering off arms behind his back, he leaves the gate enlightened but unassured of the peoples chances even with the aid of Knights...

One Legion heads away from the crowd and noise down a very dimly lit path hoping for solace in the quiet backstreets,, he moves soft yet curious for the alien objects that litter the ground around him, he runs his hands through a drape that hangs from the front of a dwelling that he cannot feel is soft, he takes in the scent of which flowers rule the sounds of bliss compels him to the other side of the path, there he finds shells of size and colour hanging from threads that gently clink in the soft breeze he knows is responsible, he cannot avert his enchantment among so many things his brain labelling and scanning everything cataloguing every piece, without warning he turns about violently with the sound of faint steps behind him...“AHH”...a small girl only upto his knee falls to the ground in terror and covers her face to hide herself, Legions Hefty hammer pulsating inches from her he is shocked to the point of fear immediately retracting his weapon when she starts to cry, he dances around trying to make her stop but clearly has no apparent maternal instincts left, his AI franticly puts options up for him...‘’pickup/pet’’...he grasps under either arm and picks her up to her feet and gives her two gentle taps on the head...

‘’AHHHHHHHMMMM’’... the crying intensifies making this killer panic even more...’’BRIBE’’...he dives into little pouch of odds and ends attached to his War belt , it contains odd things he has collected from his time on earth, small delicate things, he pulls his hand back out and in his palm he has a small spinning top metal and perpetual it’s perfectly balanced, a lighter bearing a heart and the name of someone long lost, a small toy figure with it’s arms missing and a diamond ring bent and twisted it never met it’s wearer’s finger, he looks at them pointing to each one as he does trying to figure which to offer in exchange for the Childs immediate silence, he takes the lighter with it’s rusty patches and flicks it open gaining her attention with the ping of the hinge, a smile creeps on to the little girls face the tears end, he runs his huge thumb down the flint birthing the flame the girl instantly taken she stares into the light, curious of it’s un familiarity it seems to quell her sadness so he leans down handing it to her... ‘’PET/SHOO’’... is the final option along with ...”HUG”... so he hastily gives her three pats upon the head then proceeds to spin her around and shoo her off towards the light, One Legion begins to walk once again when suddenly he feels the ground shake although slight his sensors feel it none the less, he looks at the dark wall that cuts off a narrow gap to the outside and images a stair case from the ground on the left so heads over at haste and climbs them, with each step the shockwaves grow louder the wooden stairs almost shake from their holds ,a top the stairs he looks out into the pitch black tree line, he hears but large footsteps but sees nothing, his ever watchful all seeing eye scans in night vision to try and glimpse the perpetrator in which he succeeds, it is not crystal clear , its moving away, it has large humanoid limbs loud breathing and moves in the shadows...

’’Star Fathers”...Legion turns to his right to see a guard who approaches humble...

’’Star Fathers, they rarely come this way, I’ve never seen one in day, just crashing around the canopies all night reminding us why we are stuck here, imprisoned!”...Legion turns to look out at the dark forest to look once more at the Star Father before it disappears while the guard continues on rambling...

“They dwell at the rivers end at Titan peak, it is said the ruler of Titan peak is so powerful that it is he that drinks the rivers dry and starves the land, a clan of Huge men’’ ...Legion listens but says nothing leaving the man standing while he heads down the stairs ...

’’Nice talking to you then...poxy travellers!”...

Rune takes the path shown to him by the aid, he towers over her short stature but she is not afraid of him, she holds her head high walks proud and does not acknowledge him..

“ so how old are your people?”...Rune asks...

“Any questions you have will be answered in time but for now you must follow the path in front of you!”...Rune just keeps up with her and says nothing for the last and only door now walking at a slightly faster pace the large elaborate door appears with two sentries either side, the walls are lined with suits of exotic armour and portraits of legends long past...

“At the Shepherds request ”... the sentries push each door open revealing the dome topped room of greed, lush gems and natural rarities kept under lock and key along with tapestry, not for the peoples eyes, the large stone table black and rectangular separates all from each other, the shepherds on one side already seated higher like judges, the Aid walks him to the lower stage before bows and leaves the room with the doors slamming shut behind her, a few moments of silence the shepherd of Alloy addresses Rune first and blunt...“You come here to liberate and ensure our survival you say? How can we entrust our future with a commander who was defeated on his own land? You come here exiled have you not ?’’...Rune steps around the stand slowly stopping as close to the shepherds as he can get...

‘’We are not exiled nor are defeated, a truly defeated man would not be standing before you would he? we left because the survival of my men dictated we leave, we could of stayed until the end, but then where would that leave you if we did?’’...the shepherd of alloy angered stands smashing his fist down hard on the table offended, he stares breathing heavy at Rune holding fury...

“Again you presume without knowing the facts young commander”...Orin Shepherd of stone intervenes...

“Maybe we should enlighten him of our past so that he will understand our present ?’’ ...Gaia stands fast, Her the shepherd of life floats down the stairs and face to face with Rune, she removes the hood and reveals herself for the first time , her skin infused with wood bark the hair as ivy bearing flowers of lush blue, eyes as green as the richest of emeralds piercing pupils hazel as autumn leafs, mother nature incarnate. She begins to circle earth thane as the story unfolds in echoed chant bringing forth mist thick with illusions she shrouds him inside summoning visions of her words....

’’Eons past, when the world was young, there was the alliance of Peoples , the Star Fathers, great titan watchers of the sky , architects of mountains”...the mist shows huge men standing within a colossal city gate that leads to a place among the clouds rich and plentiful, a city built of megalithic blocks and mathematics stones that shake the very world when laid...”The Colonians, the farmers of dirt and decay underground city dwellers who live in darkness and damp”... The mist swirls showing short rugged men standing atop grassland hills with workers carrying organic matter into a great colony beneath the ground thousands strong , they destroy all that’s living...”the plain men! the Guardians of the open landscapes”... Her mist shows people farming hunting building and cities on the ground elaborate and befitting, exactly what the knights knew...” the Rock stacks, cave dwellers and beast wrangling pagans, they followed their own path vanishing not long after the alliances broke.... the mist shows small village communities, strong built with wood and rock outside cave mouths, they hunt with their hands thick in bone and brow weapons merely a useful tool...

‘’ Together the kingdoms united farmed feasted and existed in harmony... That was until one day ‘THEY’ came from the furthest reaches of our lands with war and blood, we do not know what they are , the work of darkness to many. They feed on the conquered, beast masters of unnatural strength, the three kingdoms fracture under the pressure of the onslaughts driving all into exile and now, now we fight until we can no more’’...the mist clears Runes face and the shepherd of stone speaks...

“Now do you understand, it is not as simple as you assume great knight, things are delicate and broken for us already, we are the only resistance to the darkness and the whereabouts of our allies is not known to us, we are alone!”...

“I understand your situation shepherds, which is why you must allows us to aid you, we have much skill and knowledge in the conduction of war , we can help you secure your place in the future”...Rune says softly...

’’This is what worries us commander, we believe you when you say this, the question is will you know when to stop!?”...

‘’You have my word , the moment the danger is eradicated we will do what you ask of us!’’... the shepherds look at each other and again reach an accord without speaking a word...

“Very well, we accept your aid and skills, you will stay with us as force commanders under captain Gore of course who reports solely to us, you will have quarters erected for you in the barracks and your weapons returned to you’’... the life shepherd adds before the conclusion of the meeting as the Shepherds ready to leave the room.. .

‘’We shall retire now commander Rune, if you should need anything, anything at all then my quarters are open to you always’’... Rune flattered goes red, the advances of the supernatural woman holds more sting then any normal lady could...

‘’ Thank you, i shall remember that”...he says

‘’Call me GAIA commander, GAIA’’... he smiles bows and then turns to see the petite Aid by the door who has been listening to the last of the meeting, he approaches her...

‘’Beware lady Gaia if she seems to be taken by you’’...she says immediately...

‘’She’s very....textured.!?’’... He replies lost for compliments...”Do not fall for visual beauty... your fellow companions have returned and await you outside...good day commander’’... she turns and leaves him alone to find his way own way out taking a corridor off to the right, Rune left to walk waits and stares at her as long as he can before she leaves sight , as he turns back there is tapestry on the wall to lefts glance with a figure holding a relic above his head, the same figure from the pendant collected from the dead just hours earlier but worn and oxidised, the storm emitted is beating back the darkness for all to bath in light beneath, an earthly shiver goes up his spine and a sense of foreboding shimmers through him, he leaves at pace to greet his knights and plan their next move now filled with knowledge...

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