“In the depths of that cave, they lurk in the shadows, hidden from the world… The cave is ancient, older than the memories of men, and shrouded in mystery. The darkness is absolute, like a blind man’s vision. Yet, the sasquatches, with their keen eyesight, can see in the ultra-darkness, and possess powers beyond our ken…” As Geru Morf continues his tale to the children, the sound of hoofbeats echoes through the cavern.
The cave they are in has its mouth concealed by a curtain of green leaves and vines. Inside, a forest of small trees bears fruits of various colors and shapes. And there, in the center of the cave, stands a tree unlike any other. It is a chamber made of nature, where children can sit and listen to the stories of the geru morf.
A man on his steed approached the cave, A handsome man sat atop a majestic horse, his gaze as mighty as his steed. He dismounted from the horse’s shoulder and walked towards Geru Morf, his presence commanding respect and admiration.
Morf was dressed in rags and carried a staff. He had a beard and a hat that covered his eyes. He paused his tale and turned his gaze to the man who had entered the cave.
“O master geru, the keeper of the ancient lore, I come to you for guidance and assistance. Pardon me for interrupting your enchanting storytelling.” He said in a humble tone and smiled at the children. He was tall and had long, dark hair with a charming handsome face. Although he appeared to be in his twenties, he had a wise and mature demeanor.
He flashed a smile, shattering the silence that hung over his words. He locked eyes with Geru Morf, who returned his stare unflinchingly. “What do you seek from me?” Geru Morf inquired, his voice low and solemn. Steve exhaled and answered, “I want to hear a story… a story that only you can tell.” He dug into his pocket and drew out a pouch. From the pouch, he extracted a stone that was yellow in colour and radiated like the sun. Geru Morf gasped as he beheld the stone, and his eyes reflected its golden light. He grabbed the stone from Steve’s hand and scrutinized it with a strange familiarity. It was as if he had seen it before, in a distant time and place.
Three wolf cubs had suddenly ran towards them, their fur as white as snow and their eyes are grey as shining steel that glint in the sun. Steve turned his attention to the cubs. He bent down to pick them up and started petting them, feeling their softness and warmth.
A lass in a hoodie and a lad of five came to the scene with a worried drive “Grape, I told you to look after…” her words were cut by the sight of steve petting the cubs..
She let out a sigh of relief when she saw the cubs in Steve’s hands, safe and sound.
She moved closer to them where sunlight streamed through the holes in the cave. He saw her starkly beautiful eyes, and his breath caught in his throat.
She looked like eighteen, with brown eyes that sparkled in the sunlight, had long chestnut hair that falls over her shoulders like a silky waterfall, framing her bonnie face and an elegant chin as gentle as a rabbit’s.
He felt something stir in his heart. He gently handed the cubs to her, and she thanked him with a soft voice. He smiled back at her, and asked for her name. “You are…?” She replied, “Ria.” He introduced himself as Steve, and she nodded. They gazed into each other’s eyes..
Steve turned his eyes from the lass to the lad with a hint of enchantment in his glance, he spoke to the child “Are you the protector of these cubs, so brave” “What is your name, little lad?”
“Grape” He replied and moved closer to Ria. As he sees Grape move to her, he asks, with curiosity “Where do you hail from, actually… what are you doing here, you little pair?”
“They are my friends, who came to hear the tale of Princess Miri” Geru interpreted. Steve ceased his inquiries and childs cleared the path for Geru to enter his secluded chamber.
“Her eyes and hair… how did they come here? Steve questioned Geru Morf, after they were left alone in his chamber, disbelief etched on his face.
“I would not believe you if you say she is not an Adeline. “Did she really travel all the way from Magrant to listen to the stories of Miri Reynor?.. No, there’s something else…” Steve trailed off, but Geru Morf cut him off: “Yes, there is, and you are not supposed to know about it right now” after he gazed into his eyes for a moment, he persisted “Listen, this stone were forged in a cave, called ‘Vendetta’. That’s in Agnostus… Where did you get this stone and what is your intention with it?” Geru Morf demanded from Steve.
“Bellog stumbled upon it in the darkwood. It was a sight unlike any he had ever beheld before…” he said, his voice soft, masking the tremble. “Your arrival means something else… you seek something else. What is it that you need?” Geru could sense his anxiety from his furrowed brow and his darting eyes. “I need Zephyr… I know you have kept it so long… you must give it to me… for the sake of the kingdom.” Bellog pleaded with a desperate tone. Geru did not argue or question him. He went straight to the old chest he had been guarding. He opened it and took out a pouch from inside. He handed it to Bellog and said, “There are only five Zephyr balls in here… use them wisely.” Bellog opened the pouch and held the balls in his hands with a hopeful smile on his face.. He thanked Geru and put the pouch in his pocket..
He spun around and dashed out of the chamber, leaving Geru behind. Geru stared at the empty doorway and whispered, “Not a good sign I sense” looking at that stone..
Queen Jamie was ready to embark on the quest for her son. She had gathered her loyal soldiers, who stood by her side in their shining armor. They were prepared to face any danger to rescue the young prince, Who had been declared dead by Jeffry. While the queen and her men waited, the king and his men mounted their horses. They wore grim expressions, knowing the peril that awaits them. The king rode up to the queen, who gazed at him with a defiant look. “You don’t have to come with us,” he said in a low voice. “This is not your fight.. You should stay here and rule the kingdom in my absence.” But she interrupted him, “My son needs me. I don’t care what you do, I’m going to find whatever happened to him” She spoke with such conviction that the king could not help but admire her courage. He sighed, knowing he could not dissuade her, and allowed her to join the search party. He spread his hands in a gesture of futility and said, “May the gods protect us.” Then he turned his horse and led the way, followed by the queen and their loyal soldiers.
The king addressed his group before they set off. He looked at each of them with a grave expression, and spoke in a solemn tone. “We cannot afford any mistakes, for my son’s life hangs in the balance. We are heading to Eastwatch, which will take us a day. There are two army camps on the way, so be ready for anything.” He paused, and his eyes softened as they met the queen’s. She nodded, and gave him a faint smile. She was determined to find her son. The group consisted of the king, the queen, and twenty soldiers. They were the best and bravest warriors in the kingdom, and they would follow their king to the end of the world.
Robert had arrived at the secret port where they were departing. He assured the king that he would take care of everything in his absence.
Robert watched them disappear into the horizon, until his eyes could no longer see them. He smiled slyly..
He ordered the guards to stay alert and walked into the palace gate with a triumphant expression.
Geru morf scrutinizing a sword, which sparkled in the flickering light of the torches that illuminated the cavern. “This sword is ancient, older than the Vennster kingdom by millennia. There’s an inscription on the hilt in the old Trattanian. I can decipher it…” he said to a radiant woman in her prime, who bore a striking resemblance to Ria, with the same eyes and hair, and a poised and elegant manner. She inquired, “What does it say?” “Drif’ka,” Geru answered. “And what does that mean?” “Not a Slave” he said.
“Did you discover this sword in the palace of Eldria?” he asked. “Yes, I did. As soon as I laid eyes on this sword, it seemed out of place and I felt a compulsion to show it to you,” she said. “I understand. I sense something sinister is looming. A short while ago, I encountered something akin to this: a yellow stone that radiated the same aura as this sword.” He revealed the stone, which shimmered faintly in his hand.
Ria and Grape entered the chamber and beheld their mother wielding the sword with Geru. “Mom, can we go back now?” Grape whined in a childish voice, sounding restless. “No, my son, we will depart tomorrow. You two can enjoy Geru’s tales all night long,” she said, beaming.
“Yes… he promised that handsome man that he would narrate the story of Miri Reynor…” Grape said to his mom in a sweet voice. “To whom?” She asked with a grin. She glanced at Ria and queried, “Who is that handsome man?” “That’s Prince Steve of Dalf. He arrived here for some purpose lately and he sensed you were here for a reason. I merely told him that they were here to hear the stories of Miri Reynor,” Geru smiled, looking at Grape. “But don’t fret, I can tell you if you wish to listen.” He said..
Ria was engrossed in thought, staring into the air and haven’t heard a word whatever her mother and Geru were exchanging. As Elara noticed her eyes that gleamed with excitement, she said to her “Ria… Take care of Grape, wait for us outside.” She heard her mother’s voice calling her name and telling her to take care of Grape. Ria suddenly snapped out of the trance, she clutched Grape’s hand and exited the room.
“Why did you conceal the sword from him?” Elara asked him, dubious expressions on her face. “It’s nothing, I just thought that was prudent for now…” he replied. “But why, what if this sword and that stone are connected?” Ria asked with a curious face. “They are connected” Geru looked into her eyes deeply and calmly blinked his eyes and let out a sigh. Ria didn’t ask any more questions and sensed there was something Geru knew about this and wasn’t telling. Maybe it’s not time for me to know about this… she thought.
Elara departed from Geru’s chamber, strolling through the tree chairs, admiring the nature that catered to human needs. She walked towards the origin of light, to the outside, where she beheld Grape and the cubs playing around with Ria sitting by the river and contemplating the water waves of the river and wandering in thought.
She sauntered towards them, caressed the cubs and instructed Grape to look after the cubs and proceeded to sit next to Ria. Ria swiveled her face and beheld her mother. She banished her eyes of the thoughts in a flash. Elara uttered no word, but beamed like how a mother would beam to her children, and encircled her arms around her shoulders and side hugged her. They both immersed their feet into the current of the river water and grinned looking at each other like they were the best friends for an eternity.
Gallen had drifted into a deep slumber on Bellog’s back, feeling the gentle sway of the horse as it trotted along. They reached a place where dreadfulness reigned, where towering trees cast ominous shadows and a massive fence bristled with thorns. The fence seemed to touch the heavens when Bellog looked up, feeling a shiver of awe. He nudged Gallen awake, shaking his shoulders with ecstasy. Gallen’s eyes snapped open, wide with wonder. They both gazed at the sky, where the fence rose like a giant wall never ending.
They both dismounted the horse and gazed at the fence and the surroundings. The fence was marvelous, stretching across the horizon. “What a view it is…” Bellog said, his voice filled with wonderment. “The fence itself is worth our journey” Gallen agreed, nodding his head.
“Let’s see the map,” Bellog said, finding a flat spot to lay it down. He took out the large parchment from his jacket and spread it on the ground. It showed the interior of Agnostus and the way and door to enter. They are studying it carefully, looking for clues and landmarks.
“It’s hard to believe, isn’t it?” Bellog said, breaking the silence. “Yesterday we were fighting for our lives, and now we are looking for our future.” He sounded hopeful, but also nervous. “Do you think we can make it?” Gallen asked him, his eyes meeting his. “We have to,” Bellog said firmly. “We have come too far to give up now.”
“By the way, was that really a sasquatch?” Gallen asked, changing the subject. He remembered the terrifying encounter they had the previous night. “Maybe, maybe not,” Bellog shrugged. “Even King Dave Venn never saw a sasquatch in his lifetime, and that was five hundred years ago. Sasquatches were extinct before thousands of years.” He sounded doubtful, but also curious. “I saw its feet, though. They were three times the size of ours. And its eyes were bright. I couldn’t see much more in the dark, but I think it was a sasquatch.” Gallen said, his voice tinged with awe. “Well, whatever it was, I’m glad we escaped it,” Bellog said, shuddering. “Let’s hope we don’t meet it again.” Gallen replied.
Gallen still couldn’t shake off the disbelief from the previous night. He kept wondering why the creature had helped them escape from the goblin horde. It had seemed so fierce and monstrous to goblins, yet it had shown kindness to us. What was it? What did it want? He felt a surge of curiosity in his heart, in his eyes..
“Hey, look at me,” Bellog said, snapping him out of his thoughts. He shook his shoulders and looked into his eyes. “It’s okay. Believe whatever you want to. Just remember we have only one goal: to find that cave inside the fence. Okay? Don’t think about anything else.” Bellog spoke firmly, trying to keep his companion focused and motivated. He knew they couldn’t afford to lose sight of their destination and target.
Bellog and Gallen sighed, feeling a relief together. Bellog turned his attention to the map, tracing the route with his finger. Gallen reached for a fruit that he had stored in his jacket, hanging on the horse’s shoulder. He bit into it and watched Bellog study the map, wondering what he was thinking.
Bellog folded the map and tucked it back into his jacket. He looked at the fence, towering over them like a giant wall. He is eager to see what lay beyond it. He started walking to the west, following the fence. Gallen followed him, keeping pace with him.
They walked for a while, until they came across a river that flowed directly into the fence. It was a clear and sparkling stream, reflecting the dark giant trees. Bellog stopped and looked at Gallen, his eyes shining.
“Is it that simple to get inside the fence?” Gallen asked, his voice tinged with doubt. He looked at the river, wondering how they would swim it. He felt a pang of fear, imagining the dangers that lurked beneath the surface..
Bellog smiled, sensing his apprehension. He put his hand on his shoulder and said, “No, you little lad, it’s not that easy. We have to go under the water and destroy the underwater fence.” He sounded confident, but also cautious. He knew it was a risky and difficult task, but he also knew it was their only way to enter the fence.
“Underwater fence?” Gallen repeated, his eyes in confusion. He had never heard of such a thing. “Yes, that’s where the door to our future is,” Bellog said, his voice filled with hope. He looked at the fence, feeling a thrill of anticipation and nervous. He was ready to face the challenge, and to see what he can do…
Bellog had found a tranquil spot by the gentle stream, where he greeted Gallen with a warm embrace. “Steve has a dreadful bomb that can annihilate all that it touches when submerged. He calls it Zephyr,” Bellog whispered, eyeing the water. “Do we wait for him to arrive?” Gallen inquired. Bellog nodded slowly, his face a mask of hope and fear.
“… Her face, a mirror of newborn grace
Her eyes green, an emerald in a crown
Her tresses brown, a snare for heedless souls, though not a temptress she
For those, who in their minds her image trace, their hearts will throb in secrecy
She was a royal, a scion of a goddess fair
Miri was her name, the source of beauty rare.”
As Geru Morf recited the verses of his poem, Ria and Grape listened with rapt attention, their eyes sparkling with the image of Miri conjured by his words. They felt a surge of admiration for the heroine of his story, “Tell me more about her…” Ria pleaded, her voice soft and eager. Geru Morf smiled and showed them a painting of Miri. She looked radiant and regal, with emerald orbs and tresses brown.
He continued his tale, his voice full of emotion and passion. “She was a princess of Reyn, daughter of Van Reynor. Her uncle Black was the king of Reyn then.. Black was handsome and charismatic, but also ruthless and wicked.. He wanted to marry Miri, against her will. He had a dark and twisted obsession with her, and would stop at nothing to make her his…
She fled the palace to escape his scheme and lived in hiding for many years. She fell in love with a wanderer, He was kind and brave, and made her happy.. They had faced so many hardships and settled in the city of Lavo where she became a grown women..
Her father and kin were slain by Black. She felt helpless and angry, and swore revenge on her uncle.
She gave birth to a handsome boy, whom she named Dave.” Grape interrupted him, his eyes wide and eager. “What about his father?” “His father was a wanderer, a mystery to all but Miri. His name was Venn. That’s why she called her son Dave Venn. Dave was a man of many talents and adventures, and loved and respected his mother with all his heart…
Later, people gave him many names: Vennstor, the Royal Goon, the Rohm Rider, the Conqueror… And we still remember him as the Father of Kings…..”