Forged Through the Darkness by Nu Akii
Kuraii

Chapter Two

face=Arial>            A thin veil of mist rises from the earth as the calm evening relaxes
further from the gentle massage of the rainfall. The unforgiving sun lies
dormant behind the darkness of summer clouds offering a moment of relief.

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “Where’s the boy?” Bodakus, a warrior of Knight’s Pride, questions
excitedly.

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “Exactly where he’s been for the past few days - within our glorious
capital,” the peasant points towards a wooden hut, “door locked and unwilling to
respond to anyone’s call.. And we need that building too.. They’ve been holding
the guild meetings and defense conceptions in the back of my shop! My shop!”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “I’ll get him.” Bodakus grins devilishly - holding up a short-sword, old
rusted helmet and letting out a sharp chuckle. “We’ve training to do.”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            The capital echoes with thunder as the mighty warrior treads from the
hallways to the War Room where the young boy Nu resides. The thunder fades; all
is peaceful for a moment until the quiet is shattered by the dark and
battle-starved voice of some kind of demon.

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “Boy.. I know you’re in there! You have options, as any man does, either
let me in or draw your sword and prepare for HELL!”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            The hardwood door splinters and cracks against the barrage of Bodakus’s
sturdy boot.

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “I’m not quite certain this door will hold, boy!” Bodakus shouts in a
very sarcastic and condescending tone. “Yah.. I’d say this should hardly even be
considered a door.. More of.. Like a large plank! A large oak plank.”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            After several long minuets the door succumbs to the warrior’s barrage of
boot. Bodakus rushes into the room in a blaze of glory as the boy stands in awe
of the four foot six inch monument of glory which “towers” only inches above
him.

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “War Room aye? Nice choice!” Bodakus exclaims and they both look around
in agreement. “Now draw your sword!”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “Sword?”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “Yes.. Sword.”

face=Arial>

“I.. I don’t have.. a sword.”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “What?! No sword!?”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            “I’m Nine Years Old!”

face=Arial>

face=Arial>            Bodakus pauses a moment.. Obviously a nine year old wouldn’t carry a
weapon of such caliber as a sword. Maybe a stick.. Maybe a knife.. Definitely,
not a sword. The boy makes a solid point. But then again, that never stopped Bo
from carrying a sword at an early age.

 

“You’re old enough to die aren’t ya?? If
you’re old enough to die then you’re old enough to wield a sword. Old enough to
defend yourself.”

Bodakus tosses Nu the short-sword. Nu
catches the hilt and both weapon and boy hit the floor with a thud. Another long
moment passes.

“I can’t use this!” Nu shouts.

“Why not?!”

“It’s too heavy.. Too big..” The boy says
climbing to his feet.

“SHORT. SWORD.” Bo replies in all
seriousness.

“It’s nearly as big as you!” The boy
shouts.

“….”

Seconds seem like days in a situation such
as this. The warrior’s eyes become faint and lifeless. The entire world appeared
to have come to a halt. Confused and slightly alarmed the boy shifts into a more
defensive stance. Bodakus slams his Mithril gauntlet through the nearby end
table – sending a ceramic vase flying towards the wall. The hallway once again
echoes, this time with the clash of two blades. Nu barely managed to parry Bo’s
attack; the blades edge only a heartbeat from his brow. Bodakus smiles and the
boy collapses to one knee. The vase shatters against the wall.

“Nothing like a life or death situation to
build some confidence, aye boy? See.. Every man has choices. Obviously, you
chose the more intelligent of the two. Well done.” The warrior gives praise and
rests his sword upon the shoulder of the kneeling boy. Nu shivers slightly from
the chilling aura pouring out of Bodakus’s Blackhand Doomsaw.

“You’ve demonstrated yourself in combat
against one of the Knight’s Pride’s best. That earns you the rank of squire and
you shall be assigned to one of the guild’s knights for your true
training.”

“What about you, Sir Bodakus?”

Bodakus laughs. “I am in no need to
baby-sit.. Especially one that soon shall stand taller than his master! Now
hurry and return home.. Dusk is settling in and curfew is almost at
hand.”

The clouds lift to reveal the sun vanished
as the sea of moonlit hills break the horizon. Campfires burn into the night;
watchtowers and outposts overlook the village outskirts as patrols wander the
streets. For once in a long while the citizens may sleep well.

 


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Last Updated: Mar 29, 2016

About The Author

Karen 1
Karen is H.D.i.C. (Head Druid in Charge) at EQHammer. She likes chocolate chip pancakes, warm hugs, gaming so late that it's early, and rooting things and covering them with bees. Don't read her Ten Ton Hammer column every Tuesday. Or the EQHammer one every Thursday, either.

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