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The Inner Will

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A lone wonderer wakes from up from a coma in an abandoned castle. As he explores the area he notices a king put to stone as well as a Glowing Crystal Shard. The wonderer travels back to the very last remains of the island of Planggana. Which is now within the depths of the Bundoc Mountains. From there he unlocks his true abilities.

Fantasy / Mystery
Age Rating:

Chapter 1

Far from the hearts of modernization and technology, a lone explorer with a misty past has always been fond of discovering new people, ideas, experiences, and even places. His overwhelming desire and curiosity to seek places he’s never been has led him to a discovery that one might never forget and will ever cement the purpose the explorer seeks.

After Waking up from a very long coma at night, Conrad finds himself in a small room; getting up from bed with a massive headache, he stumbles across the hallway, having his vision blurred. Deep at the other end of the hallway, barely seeing anything due to how dark the hallway is, he is guided by a glowing light at the end of the hall. Conrad slowly gets closer to the glow, and he sees that it’s a crystal shard; from the looks of this, it seems that the shards have been smashed. Reaching onto his torso, he notices that his pendant is missing. Not knowing what to do, he decides to try and find a way out of the castle; however, as he illuminates the room more with the crystal shard, he sees a statue that resembles the king of Sapuya. The statue frightens Conrad, which causes him to fall on the floor and have to regain himself. His head aching, he tries to find the quickest exit out of the castle. He eventually lands outside and sees the whole kingdom of Sapuya completely destroyed. Conrad’s last traced memory was when he was with the Planganians in a valley, and all he could recall was that it was south of where he was.

He grabs what little supplies he can find and heads down south to what was called the green valley. While walking down, he hears nothing, no sound of a human or animal. All that can be heard is the dead sound of the wind. While he enters the green valley, he sees skeletons on the ground with very familiar-looking clothing and camp equipment as well. Confused, his head aches as if he’s seen them before. Moving upward, he sees a familiar-looking tree, and it all hits him at once. He has a vision of a single warrior interacting with the inhabitants who are dead here. Before he knew it, he unsheathed his sword and started violently slashing. Though I am who the warrior was fighting, it’s unclear as Conrad’s vision becomes hazy.

Tired and dehydrated, he decides to seek shelter, gradually setting up under a large tree with enough leaves to keep him warm. Struggling to sleep, Conrad succumbs to nightmares of random images detailing the same soldier who was back at the castle and a very hazy vision of four figures. Conrad woke up in shock. As soon as he woke up, haziness filled his eyes, and all he could hear was still the swaying of branches and leaves that rhymed into every caress of air.

He stands up and tries to get familiar with his surroundings to find any source of water. He clumsily walks deeper into the woods with his limited vision while his hand tightens its grip on his crystal shard as he tries to keep himself together. Slowly losing hope, curiosity and fear welcomed him as he anticipated what else was waiting for him. Still lost at the heart of the woods, he eventually comes across the sound of the stream, the feeling calming his mind.

As soon as Conrad gets near where the sound is coming from, he is welcomed by a sight of a beautiful river. At first glance, it might have seemed like an ordinary body of water, but then he began to try and drink the water. His crystal shard began to glow as well as the river. As the river began to glow, he started to see orbs coming out of the river, gradually turning into apparitions of people that looked like they were not familiar with the land. The spirits start walking up the river, and Conrad decides to follow; the stream gradually becomes steeper as the path continues, eventually leading to the inside of a cave.

The spirits disappear once he arrives inside. Looking down, he sees no bottom for where the water leads, “Could there be something down there?” Conrad thinks to himself. He lights up a torch and throws it down the stream seeing that the light only covers a small fraction of the bottom. With his crystal shard, he decides to climb down slowly while having the illumination of the crystal. He traverses to the bottom and sees that the river has changed from blue to red.

He loses grip and slams his face into the ground. As he gets up and uses his crystal to illuminate the room. As he turns around, he sees four stoned statues that resemble the four knights. Suddenly he has another vision, this time of himself in bed during his coma, he sees a figure pulled by another figure, and in the dark of night, he sees two shadows fighting. One dropped something and fell while the other picked up shards. As soon as Conrad could make up what it was, he heard a calming melody.

He sees the same orb apparitions going further into the depths, following the source of the melody. Conrad decides to follow the ghosts walking toward the tune. As he traverses further, he notices pillar-like structures with carvings that look like they came from different cultures. Moving forward, he is getting closer to the source of the humming, he then enters into space, and the humming stops. Anxious, he traverses slowly and turns toward the corner. He sees a room with a faint light coming from the cracks of the surface; he looks up at the light and gets interrupted by a set of footsteps somewhere within the darkness. Someone or something is coming closer to him. The footsteps gradually become louder, and a shiver is felt down Conrad’s spine as he anticipates a mysterious figure slowly coming out of a shadow. He closes his eyes, and the shadow draws near until it comes face to face with Conrad. At first, he refrained from doing any movement as he was scared of the figure in front of him. He decided to open his eyes from the illumination of the crystal, and he saw a hooded face not even centimetres away from him. Her entire face and body are wrinkled at a glance, and looking down under her hood toward her eyes looks like it does not have a soul in it. “Who are you?” they both asked.

The Mangaylan takes a deeper look, “Ahhh, I know who you are. It’s been quite a long time since I found someone strong enough to venture down to this place.” As soon as the old lady continues to speak, Conrad starts to feel a tingling sensation in his head, “Stop!” he screams as memories of the past come rushing down to him, “Who am I?” he asked. Before the lady could speak, their surroundings started to light up more. At first, it was unnoticeable, so the lady answered, “I know the King of Sapuya to be a wise man but not wise enough to think to let you find me all alone in my own haven.” “It just goes to show how he abhors his own children.” Conrad becomes more confused, “What do you mean?” he responded.

The old lady places her finger on Conrad’s head. Suddenly the room gradually becomes pitch black. As Conrad looks at his hands, he sees a blue aura around his skin and his unconscious physical form, “You are the fifth child of the King of Sapuya, Conrad.” The old lady forces Conrad to control his memories by showing images from the extinction of his homeland, the battle with the Mangaylan, which highly resembles the old lady in front of him, a soldier picking him up near the same tree he once rested at and his last interactions with the four knights and his father. It all started to make sense now.

The Mangaylan adds, “Your memory does not fool you. I was the one that helped destroy Planggana, I was the one that defeated the king as well as the four knights, and I was the one who manipulated the king and the four knights to bowl down to my will.” She throws the 4 shards split from the pendant on the ground as proof. “I am the Mangaylan you see in your dreams,” she said softly. Conrad kneels down and looks at the shards. Different emotions filled Conrad’s heart, but anger engulfed his whole being. Without hesitation, he jumps towards the Mangaylan and attacks head-on with his bare hands. Amused by Conrad’s actions, Mangaylan brushes off his attacks and begins to taunt him. Their duel continued, and Conrad’s attacks barely hit the Mangaylan, making him tired as minutes went by, giving more advantage to the latter.

With Conrad’s attempt to grab her wings, she grabbed him by the neck with its long arms. She used its full force that made his body hit the floor, almost making him lose consciousness, taunting him even further, “Ahahahaha, such strong power but no ambition to project it. I will enjoy taking your soul, just like the 4 knights and that cowardly king from Sapuya”. She torments the souls right before him with her magic while he is on the ground fighting for his life. Seeing the souls screaming and being torn apart pushed him further toward the edge. The Mangaylan grabs the souls of the 4 knights and the King of Sapuya.

This angered Conrad even further. His frustration grew each minute, quickly becoming sadness. He began to lose hope, which the Mangaylan saw as an opportunity. With her power to look into his soul and look through his weakness, spirit dust comes out of his mouth, “so weak-willed, at least your predecessors put up a fight,” said the Mangaylan. He starts crying and shouting, triggering light to shine through the shards inside the cave, which stops the Mangaylan from laughing. The lights began to illuminate as the orbs floated and surrounded her and Conrad. The shards start to float into the air, the Mangaylan tries to reach out for the shards, but they latch onto Conrad’s chest, Creating an explosion of light.

After the explosion of light, the cave gradually filled itself with darkness. Mangaylan’s eyes were shut before she could react further; she was slammed into the wall, which angered her. She quickly got up and saw Conrad illuminated in a blue fire. Staring at her, His eyes grew darker as the orbs surrounded him. He looked at The Mangaylan and realised that the lights behind him were actually the souls of those she took from Planggana. She can sense more tremendous energy coming from the light; anger, despair, and revenge envelopes Conrad making the Mangaylan tremble in fear.

Desperate for powers, the Mangaylan lashed towards Conrad’s pendant. Still, before her fingers went to its surface, Conrad quickly punched her in the stomach with all of his might, giving a fatal blow to the Mangaylan. The Mangaylan tries to control one of the orbs to heal herself, and Conrad takes the orb away from the Mangalyaan. He then throws the Mangaylan like a ragdoll, crippling every bone in her body. Paralyzed, she goes for one last attack to try and take the pendant that is attached to Conrad and harness its power. As she touches the pendant, the pendant cracks and blows up in front of her, shattering her wings and breaking her arms, turning her back to her human form.

Conrad starts to regain himself and come back to his human form. He began to see orbs transform into the owners of the souls and noticed that they were all natives of Planggana. Looking through the room, he sees the king and the four knights. The king’s aura walks towards Conrad. “You’ve done well, son. I have one last wish,” Conrad listens, “I’m sorry for everything, believing that you would have been safe in Planggana. I didn’t understand how much worse it would have been over there. I should have never left Planggana. However, in saying this would you carry on with Sapuya to recreate what was once a mighty kingdom?”

Conrad nods his head. “The people of Planganna are long gone leaving me as the last Plangganian,” the king replies, “Yes, but you have the drive to make your own world a reality. As you were fighting the Mangaylan, your inner will came out. That flame inside you ignited because you felt as if there was something worth fighting for,′ Conrad ponders and thinks back to the visions that he experienced.

“Do not be so hard on yourself for what happened to Planggana. What you have done today has essentially saved many Plangganian souls.” The king explains further, “Since you have defeated the Mangaylan, all souls that have been affected by the Mangaylan will be cured of the curse, in saying that you may not be the only Plangganian alive now.” Conrad asks, “Hold on, wouldn’t you and the four knights come back?”

The king replies, “Yes, but all that will remain is dust. Our souls have been away from our physical forms for so long that our physical forms within the stone will result in nothing but dust. Unfortunately, we still age even if we are put to stone. We are long dead, son”. “But please head back into the world, explore, and find that drive that ignited you in the first place.” The king’s final words were, “Go and find who you are, Conrad. We will be close by”.

As the king and the four knights’ souls disappear, the rest of the souls transform into orbs and transport Conrad back to the river. While he was travelling back to the surface, he saw that what were once statues of stone had disappeared, even the statues that resembled the four knights.

When landing back on the surface and not really knowing what to do next, he decides to travel, meet new people, try new experiences, and come toward people that will help him find out more about who he is. Eventually, after many adventures, he finds out what ignited his inner will and returns to the ruins of the Sapuya Kingdom. With his companions, knowledge, and, most importantly, his will and drive. He rebuilds Sapuya and creates a strong and thriving kingdom.

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