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Kala'duin, the Prismatic

 
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Tue May 12, 2009 6:43 pm    Post subject: Kala'duin, the Prismatic Reply with quote

I can't take it anymore! Evil or Very Mad I refuse to let this board die without a fight! It was never my intention to post this, leave alone show this to anyone (partly because I think it's crap, and partly because it is somewhat personal), therefore it's perfect for a last ditch effort Wink.

I give no guarantees of longevity, periodic increase or loral perfection, but I can give you a prelude and the first two chapters (although the structural demarcations between chapters have yet to be defined. I might lob four of them together after a while. But I think writing mini-chapters helps to "keep it coming" at first Wink).

I hope some of you enjoy it and that everyone has something they'd like said on the matter (after all, not much else is being said...). My dialogue is awful, but considering a lot of it is to be had, I'm hoping to improve along the way Wink. Tips are always helpful.

I bring you:

KALA'DUIN, THE PRISMATIC

Prelude:


A flame flit across the cold air. It illumined the subterranean hollow and crowned a smiling face in a shimmer light. “You are awake,” a tired, feminine voice rumbled through the cave and left the child in her arms puzzled at her wonderfully maternal sound. “Hush, don’t speak. You will be safe, but not with me,” and the babe had to hold back his urge to cry; it didn’t understand. Would she be leaving him behind? And why?

She laid him on the rocky floor and shushed. Her features were shaded by the dark and he could only make out the great, protective body that stooped over him. Her breathing became haggard, and he noticed her mumbling; It filled the cave and vibrated the air, moist and moss, which clung together like scared children on a stormy prairie night.

Through the incanting of the figure above him, the child could discern a distant drone that steadily closed in on the pair of them and he could feel the closeby heartbeat quicken. Even from afar, the murmur unnerved the both of them. But what or who could frighten this large, benign and strong being? All his thoughts were focussed on her and the movement of her arms, lips and entire body, losing himself in her mesmerising motion.

“We will meet again, my child!” and before the awareness of absence sunk in, he was travelling along a beam of compressed energy away from his presumptive mother, and further away from who he was, how he was and what had just happened.
---


Chapter One:
Home Is Where Your Body Lies


In imitation of the sun, a golden coach rode past in a gleaming blaze. It stopped in front of a set of marble stairs that led up to a terraced palace, adorned with beautiful, elfin-faced statues. Reaching the terrace, the three shining, regal individuals that had issued forth from the carriage, turned and faced the cheering crowds who welcomed them back to Silvermoon with green, red and golden banners gliding on the breeze accompanied by varicoloured confetti.

The fountains that stood watch to each side of the immense frontal portal glittered and glowed in the midday sun. They beckoned the royals inside with intricately impossible spurts of water that flowed from the colonnaded statuettes, which stood at the fountains’ centres. The first to reach the tempered brass gate, in which was engraved the Sun Sigil, was young and bold, brazen and fiery, and disdainful of the crowds. He had had a life of study he wanted to return to. A small magical token – from his father – held him back, so instead he swivelled and urged his parents before retreating into the shadows of the gold-lined walls of the Sun Palace.

The aged king had an arm wrapped around the woman’s neck whilst hers curled around his waist. They spiralled around one last time at the top of the gold and silver inlaid stairs and waved at the undulating mob of bright faces and well-willing words. Both glanced at each other and, with a nod, threw their arms outwards to encompass the brilliant sky with its gold-rimmed clouds; a shimmering rain of happiness and hope descended onto the crowds, catching the light in a thousand-angled wall of mirrors breaking overhead. Instead of cowering, the crowd welcomed the soft particles their King and Queen had dispersed and gave a final cheer; they called it the ‘Sun’s Unction’.

Withdrawing from the bliss-blessed crowds, the King and Queen made for the great doors and stuck together like lovesick butterflies. Home at last – they had visited old friends in Dalaran and their bodies felt packed together like clotted hair from the carriage ride. A step removed from the entrance, the Queen rocked back and forth, dazed on her feet, squeezing her eyes shut from a burning sensation that wanted to wrest her heart from her chest. At once she looked back and saw a novelty: a small cradle from which a silent sobbing flowed like a mountain spring. It basked in the sunlight atop the stairs and demanded her attention.

“Anasterian,” she nudged her husband who had held her upright, and the two of them made for the small crib. “Oh look, how adorable a face it has,” she swooned in front of the child that taxed her, compared her to a face he had already forgotten.

A small flash erupted from the King’s hands and he shrugged. An incomprehensible quality of the arcane rushed about the child in the King’s expert sight and then evaporated like water dripping upwards. “How did it come here?” he murmured to the Queen, who was reduced to making funny faces in front of the giggling infant.

“Does it matter, Anasté? It was guided to us. My heart can feel that this child is right in every meaning of the word. We need to take it in or…”

“Aleisia? We don’t need to do anything. I choose not to embroil myself with a mystery arrival embedded in unkown magic,” He was too confused to be upset, but tired enough to feel dispassionately indignant.

His lips formed a pencil streak across his face, the first of many the child would see. Next, an invisible hand quenched the King’s heart and opened his eyes to the brilliance that enveloped the child; it wrote in the sky in illegible but understandable marks that there would come only merit and merriment should they feed, house and care for the child. An undisputing mood settled into the King and his eyes mellowed as the Queen placed the basket in her arms and showed him the radiant golden eyes that beamed of wisdom and perfection beyond age or doubt.

“Those eyes: not in hundreds of years…”

“I know of your doubts.” She shook her head, “He’s not a threat. If anything his eyes betray a heritage we cannot forsake lightly. We cannot turn our backs on this scion of alien origin. Besides,” an unspoken thought hung between the royal couple and his face wielded a staunch and weary smile of piety and consideration while hers moved in to kiss the child on the forehead.

The child would be theirs: Kala’duin Sunstrider, the ‘Angelic Apparition’, a second son to Anasterian Sunstrider and Aleisia Cloudbreaker, King and Queen of Quel’Thalas and the High Elves. The crowd spectated the scene and, slightly bewildered, cheered again. The ways of Azeroth, the universe and an entire timeline had changed with the cry of one child.


Chapter Two:
An Expected Visit


"Mother, Father!” the youth bounded for the round marble table, framed by the collonaded porch in dying sunlight.

“My apologies, your highnesses, I couldn’t –“

“Let him,” a strange smile settled on Anasterian’s face. He was glad for an intrusive sunbeam to cleave his thoughts. The King drew a chair from the table and sat himself down, waving away a circle of wizened Elves who tutted their way to a nearby foyer. The Queen strode in from an adjacent room and extended her arms to her son.

Kala’duin had been in the Lithien Zaram before, and often at that – his eternal curiosity had made him invisible to its round-the-clock guards –, but he was still just as amazed to see the lay-out of Quel’Thalas crafted in perfect colouring and proportion onto the central table of the room.

“Apple of my eye, what is it?” her kind smile blinded Kala to her sidewards peek. Anasterian was sitting hunched in his chair with a forlorn look in his eyes. The both of them knew what was to come. Every year the boy would trace their presence and run in on their activity to tell him what they had already known days on beforehand.

“Kael is coming, Kael’thas is coming; I can feel it!” he glowed with pride and as swift as he’d come, he swept past the guards and made for the front gate where he first entered the castle over thirty years ago in the Queen’s arms. This too was customary. He would hide in one of the hundred shadowed niches in the golden wall and jump at a suspecting Kael’thas, who would brush the impish brother off and make for his parents.


They had tried everything. On Kala’duin’s twenty-fifth birthday, they presented him to his first tutor, Magister Athaniar Nighwell the lead researcher at the Royal Institute for Arcane Advance, at the time. But his work performance suffered under the inability to teach Kala anything other than parlour tricks.

Next, Kala received the teachings of Driana Melissira, former Professor of Applied Arcana. Fortune dealt her a bad hand; she threatened to polymorph Kala when he couldn’t cast a spray of water upon examination. She now lives out a calm and pastoral life in the Quel’thalassi highlands on royal grazelands.

By the time Kala’duin was thirthy-six, he had read every book on the matter of the arcane, but had so far been unable to cast that spray of water. As a last-ditch effort the Royal Vizier Arridiel Nat’Remar proposed to the King and Queen to educate their son but ensured nothing; they understood. Kala’duin knew the advisor well and the two had a friendly relationship, but to the King and Queen’s dismay, not even one such as he could push their son into weaving anything other than fizzled out magic. It was at this point that they gave up on initiating Kala’duin into the magical arts and encouraged his blossoming swordsmanship instead. After over forty years of concealment, the King and Queen had managed to reconcile their bitter disappointment with reality and turned into displeasure to love.


“I see my little brother’s astute sense of the arcane hasn’t dimmed, your majesties” Kael’thas quipped once he met the King and Queen in the first of many atriums. His mother neglected to hug him dearly, and Kael’thas feigned insouciance.

“Instead of pestering your brother –“

“I what?” Kael’thas shot back whilst matching his father in height, “Your majesty?”

“You flared your energy. You know that Kala’duin…”

“…Is arcanely lame and to be handled like a crystalline alembic. Yes, I know, father. My Lord.” The rebellious young elf squared his jaw and stared his father in the eye. He flinched. His gaze wandered to his mother’s grim expression. He scowled. Turning round the room, he saw that no guards were present and felt that his words had missed their effect. He glowered; too much drama and too little of an audience was present for the great Kael’thas.

“I’d rather have you tell me what news comes from the south?” Anasterian’s stern voice rang in Kael’thas’s ears, who saw his father for the old elf he was.

“Heightened Amani activity, but you don’t need me to tell you that.” He got a cold reply and continued his report on the organisation of the Trolls in the most businesslike of terms. The two of them moved back into the Zaram, and sat themwselves down diametrically opposed around the map table.

Aleisia left them to it. She needed to see her other son, and while thinking she was betraying Kael’thas by the thought of it, her comportment never matched her doubt.


Kala’duin meanwhile milled about and made his favourite trek through the palace gardens – putting terror in the tender hearts of the gardeners and greenkeepers – fencing with the magnolias and pretending entrapment by the wisteria that abounded the various pavilions and overarched benches. He wanted to hear the news from the Blackened Woods, but there'd be no gain from rushing in the Zaram again. At the back of the palace he let the last sunshine cast its soothing rays on him – its lazy pink and orange streaked the calm sea in front of him.

Distracted, he backed down from the waterfront and took the quickest route to his chambers. Turning a bend in the shrubbery, the Queen was awaiting him on a bench encroached by the cattails and high grasses nurtured by a passing brook.

“Mother? What a surprise, I was just getting back inside. I didn’t do anything! The gardeners didn’t mind. It was an old flower pot! Well, only two centuries old, really…” he froze and looked around for an exit as his battlemaster had trained him to do.

“Don’t worry, my dear Kala, it’ll be our secret,” she winked with a smile of pure motherly warmth and let him pace about in the cramped space, suddenly anxious to get him out of the garden and into a warm bed, preferrably with ten foot high walls around it.

“Come, we must talk – come sit – it’s important –, come, next to me.” The boy tried to manoeuver out of the way, but was entangled by his mother’s loving grasp – he’d like to see his battlemaster evade that move!

“Your father and I worry about you, sun of suns,” she pleaded. “You are nearing your fiftieth birthday. You will have to take up a rank in the military like your brother and like your father before you.”

“I’ll make a fine warrior, mother! I promise! I-I’ve been practising my dual falchions all week with Master Uiligiun!” he demonstrated by wriggling combatively in his seat – quite a chore for a frail elf mother to hold back a fully grown, boyish son.

“Yes, dearest of the dear, we know that you are an unmatched swordfighter, of which we are very proud. But your father and I… love you too much. We are perfect in all regards but this. We love our sons too much. And in war, there are casualties. Would you not rather be someone who heals wounds, not deals them out?”

“Yes, I guess,” he shrugged like any unwilling child would and fiddled with his cloak brooch. Never mind the million battles and duels he’d staged in his mind’s eye every night, doused in the din of spears and blades.

“That’s why we’ve asked a good friend of ours over for a month. I’m sure you’ll have heard of him in your history lessons.” The boy looked up, into his mother’s warmer-than-aquamarine blue eyes and listened. “His name is Uther, the Lightbringer.” The both of them smiled conspiratorily.


The boy returned to his room in a trance and dropped himself onto his large but harmoniously spaced bed. The wind swept his curtains helter-skelter through the air, casting ripples of a cerulean hue at the hallway-side of the enormous, domed chamber. Before he could register his surprise at such a visitor, the boy fell prey to a little nap.

Like a mouse in the wainscoting, an unseen presence soon dawned upon the supine Prince. He sidled his arm under the bed and took hold of a saber. The shadow moved in on him like a curtain gone astray. In a flurry of robes and blankets, the Prince jumped up from his bed and, saber outstretched, held the shadowy presence at sword point. A flick of the finger and magical, blue lights flowed into lanterns set at even points along the walls and columned terrace; they flickered for a devastatingly disappointing second, but they stayed on, to Kala’s delight. They revealed a red-scaled animal flying at eye height with its tiny, leathery wings beating softly.

“Don’t hurt me,” it squeaked at the Prince, and backed away. “I was sent here to fetch you, that’s all! I swear!” The Prince stood confused and let his saber droop from his wrist.

“What are you?” he demanded in a whisper, suddenly terrorised by the thought of hordes of small, impish creatures appearing from behind closets and pillars. “What are you!” he yelled.

“Ack - Quiet! We must not be heard. Follow me; all will be made clear.” And with that the beast swam through the air into the garden, a dazed and disturbed prince trudging in his wake. Waking up now wouldn’t seem unreal, but neither did walking around in the chilly air with cold and clammy reeds and grasses staining his billowing garments. There was a distinct breeze, but he couldn’t quite gauge its direction or even whether it was warm or cold. He simply felt it, lazying past him not unlike the goldfish he kept in his private swimming pool. But don’t tell his father that.

He was torn between curiosity and dread, but he gave in to the former and ran neck to neck with the tiny creature. “Much farther still?” he said, jogging idly, taking in the subtle motion of the small wings. He felt he’d seen such a creature before. Somewhere in the endless supply of books available to him? On a wall somewhere, telling the story of a thousand miracles and a million heroes of elfkind? His mind, as if on purpose, drew a curious blank. His mind also seemed to make a point of forgetting the scaly creature the moment he averted his eyes; there were hazy moments in which his movements seemed futile and puerile, because he was running in a void and deserted place to Light knows where. And yet, there was this continuous noise at his left ear.

The buzzing of wings halted and he suddenly stared at nothing. The world had fallen away from his view before his eyes and been replaced by a new one: a vista of mountains and rocky crags, of rosy clouds and a bright sun that blinded him, regarded him, and looked down on him; the sun was an eternal spectator with a gaze more piercing than the rocky spine of the mountain ridge below. He wanted to move, but felt rock sliding underneath his feet and instinctively moved back, hanging on to an outcropping on a miles-high ledge. A strange mist washed by; it was a lone cloud. He was pretty high up, scorched by the sun and soothed by a balmy wind.

The feeling of fear crept into his bones again and he started to shiver and yammer as he held on tightly. “What is this? Who did this? Where am I?” he uttered, frozen stiff from dreadful shivering.

“Open your eyes,” a voice more beautiful than his mother’s said and he opened his eyes – he could have sworn they had been opened! A world of electric movement spun itself out before him, making itself as it saw itself and becoming as it was expected to become. He saw it, and saw it being seen and the thought burst into him that he was still in his own mind, for he was now at the heart of it and he could see where that same thought had shattered his consciousness, and his view of the world. A dark shadow, present but not seen, something that moved between the smallest hole yet encompassed his entire vision, spoke to him and he listened, rapt.

“You are not who you think you are; your parents know this and accept you for it. Be loyal to them and forever love them.” A sob pierced the silence that hung in the boy’s mind. “You see me not, for I have been erased from your memory. A most unfortunate handicap was thrust upon you alongside. Tomorrow, you will awaken and possess powers you have always known, more intimately than you know your own mother, but never could remember. Keep them hidden from others. They are precious.”

“Who are y–?”


Chapter Three:
Holy Men


Neither soaked nor tired, Kala woke up gently and saw that the sun had long vanished from sight. He swept the room for any leathery-winged creatures and assured himself he was alone tonight. Yet, when he closed his eyes he felt others.

The dimmed feeling of arcane power that usually dripped off his parents and his brother and his teachers and all the casters that resided on the palace grounds was no longer dim. The young elf could determine every fragment of these people’s power and could pinpoint their location to the inch. The world seemed ordered by the spread-out figures on a circular chess board that was the palace’s blueprint in the boy’s mind.

One figure was out of place. A presence was wandering the gardens. Not only that, but it was sending fireballs this way and that, or so the magical residue… implied? With a simple thought of ‘fire and destruction’, a fireball erupted from his hands. The presence in the gardens anxiously responded to him by reaching out. Their minds met but for the slightest moment just as Kala extinguished his fireball and went back to bed; he hoped he hadn’t been detected. Even though he felt agonised and awake by the experience, his mind urged him to sleep. He dozed off silently, this time fencing with a long-taloned scaly creature that he couldn’t quite place in his memories.


The next morning a host of brightly garbed and variably decorated or distinguished officials stood gathered in the courtyard of the Sun Palace, done up with a bounty of colourful trappings; festive garlands and flower arrangements were draped across and around the walls, arches, pillars and grounds of the extensive courtyard. All possible paraphernalia were present to secure and promote the prestige and wealth of the High Elves in general – and that of House Sunstrider in particular.

Today the crowd expected a strange sight to Elven eyes. King Anasterian, Queen Aleisia and the Princes Kael’thas and Kala’duin each headed a regiment of courtiers, servants, guards and resident scholars. They gazed at the palace gatehouse and overheard from afar the parade of cavalry.


Uther had wished for a solemn entry rather than a festive and exuberant cavalcade. The Queen smiled as she recalled how they had conversed in the Room of Light – an honorary suite that was bestowed upon high Elven royalty by the mage council, the Kirin Tor – and it seemed to her that Uther would have come under cover of night had he been allowed. But she had insisted upon his entry being glorious, if modest, in the great Lightbringer’s honour. “Good Uther, you are to the Sun Palace what rivers are to seas! We will avow to an undue measure of formality, but we will not tolerate inappropriate solemnity! Your knights will be heralded with every clatter on Silvermoon’s paving and for every shimmer of your silver armour. Why should pomp seem pompous when it is due?”

Uther had had no ready answer and turned his gaze to the purple haze revealed by the magical sky-light.


The staunch hero of the Orc Wars instilled in the taut and elongated faces of the Elves a stillness and pride that shouted down their cheers. All too soon that symbol of righteousness and power rode by, vanishing from their lowly sights. The double column of knights passed under the crest of House Sunstrider and poured into the courtyard, leaving behind a string of uplifted hearts.

With a circumspect look in his eyes, Uther Lightbringer felt spurred to a sardonic smile as the congregation cheered and hailed the Knights of the Silver Hand. They descended at Uther’s call, a bellow of horns falls short of duplicating. One fluid motion later, even for all their armament, the battalion of knights was assembled. Stable boys guided their steeds to lofty stables.

“The glorious Uther Lightbringer, scourge of warlocks and repeller of Orcs, on a sun-beamed day arrived at my home and I welcomed him warmly. That I will tell my children for years to come and so it will be written down in Elven history,” the King greeted his visitor. And held out a strong yet supple hand to be welcomed by the calloused and huge hands of the paladin.

“My lord, my lady,” Uther genuflected, “what an honour you do me. Never before have I been to these parts of your lands and never before have I beheld such splendour, wealth and beauty. The Light shines kindly upon yourselves and your people.” With a majestic hammer, inscribed and runed, gilded and glowing, swinging at his waist, he stepped towards Kael’thas and Kala’duin.

“It is an honour, general Kael’thas. I can remember when you were younger still and your face shone with the brightness of youth. Now I see vigour and strength in you. It has been a while since last we spoke.” Uther had a quality of making people love him. It was not a subtle charm; it charged the air like lightning, but for all the overbearing qualities and social pungence, Uther could not offend man nor woman.

“You Humans age so fast, Uther. I could never keep up!” Kael’thas uttered in good cheer. The two of them laughed in sharing a handshake. “But you are most welcome, great Lightbringer, and you must forgive my absence in Lordaeron; I have had neither time nor opportunity with Troll activity flaring up in the southern lands. Tonight, however, we will speak during dinner and we shall speak at length, yes?” When Kael’thas spoke, a soft stutter interrupted his balmy fluency and for all his good words, he lacked the strength to mean them.

“And what a fine figure of Elven grace and merit I see before me! You must be my new apprentice, Kala’duin? I have heard of your prowess with blade, bow and…” his smile wrinkled the formal mood, “well, that and every other martial implement I have ever heard of! But now comes the time to learn the ways of healing, not harming. What say you?”

Kala’duin, though he had heard everything, was paying little attention to the scene. From the moment the knights had ridden into his life, Kala’duin, who had been looking forward to meeting the great Uther – the slayer of Orcs, Ogres, Trolls, warlocks, warriors and warlords; Uther, who was the bravest, holiest, strongest soldier to serve the Light Lordaeron had ever seen; Uther the Lighbringer of whom would be written more books than most kings of the Azerothian dynasties – Kala’s eyes had been pointed at the companion by Uther’s side.

“Nothing would please me more, great Lightbringer, but tell me of your other apprentice. Will he be engaging in my training as well?” Kala raised his eyes to face Uther, leering at the apprentice to Uther’s side the way a snake grapples a mouse. He evoked a deep breath from the young paladin and turned his smirk upside down. Kael’thas glanced sidewards at his younger brother. He wondered what had gotten into him, but wisely held his tongue.

“Ah, you mean my best pupil to date, Prince Arthas Menethil, son to King Terenas the Second of Lordaeron? Yes, he will certainly help me train you. I hope you have no objections, Prince Kala’duin?”

“Not at all, lord Uther. It would be my honour, as it will be yours to be training two princes at the same time!” he smiled and nodded as he moved out of the way for his parents to take the lead and escort the guests to the palace. With Uther and Kael’thas coming up second to the budding caravan, Arthas and Kala’duin closed the ranks of the stately sextet as they marched through a mass of vivid colours and jocund sounds. The armor-clad chunk of knightlihood that strode regally next to Kala’duin strained to avoid any possible eye contact, most of all with Kala’duin, while their regal robes swept past the undulating, adulating adherents.


For the remainder of the day, the six of them talked, ate, conversed, dined and descanted, which was understandable considering the long and fruitful history between the royal pair and the two paladins – no diplomats of the Light ever swayed more High Elves to the Holy Way –, but nonetheless an endless bore for the youngest ones among them.

Kael’thas, eager to engage in adult conversation drew attention whenever he could regale them of his strategic feats against the Trolls, his battles with Amani shadow priests and other shadow casters, dancers, flayers, hunters… The list along with his endurance was endless.

Kala’duin on the other hand stayed himself. On occasion a glance from his mother would invite him to join the conversation briefly – a matter of courtly courtesy–, but his attention invariably flagged and he would sag back into his chair to let his mind wander. Ever since the night before, his mind had exploded with magical acuity for no other reason, it seemed to him, than having slept and dreamt well. While his mind had only encompassed the palace grounds that night, that day he was preoccupied with the whole of Silvermoon. Every spell cast, from maintenance spells for the magical defences to the scryings of the royal seer, surged into his brain and imprinted on him in one day a wealth of magical acumen.

So much so that by the end of the evening he felt his parents becoming aware of his presence in the fabric of magic – a spider caught in another’s web – and he managed to conceal his powers by means of the same strands of magic devised by his distant ancestors which warded the High Elves’ magical lifestyle from demonic sight and activity.

Kael’thas had been too caught up in his own world to notice. Though a memory tugged on his awareness, he preoccupied himself – and precious others – with another tale of himself, battling a ferocious band of priests of Shirvallah, the Troll God of War and Peace.

For his part, Kala’duin’s golden eyes were glued to Arthas’s features: how he sat, how he spoke, how he smiled with but a speck of passion, how he shifted his weight from one elbow to another, and how he sighed when Kael’thas had started another epic story or when Anasterian recalled an old friend Uther and he had known from this battlefield or that council meeting.

Nearing the night these two activities, one cerebral and one sensory, had drained his energy and he could no longer hide his uncharacteristic listlessness. The endless impressions resounded in him as he took to his canopy bed, lounging in the eternal springtide air. Kala’duin fell asleep with but one thought on his mind: I can’t wait to fight him.
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...


Last edited by Amaunator on Mon Dec 28, 2009 9:24 pm; edited 10 times in total
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Fri May 22, 2009 4:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry to double post, but I seriously edited parts of what I got already (and I streamlined it somewhat, along with filtering construction errors). For those who haven't yet read it: you're in luck! For all others: read again with glee! :p

P.S: And don't forget to comment Wink.
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...
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Nuclearbear



Joined: 17 Jul 2007
Posts: 343
Location: Minestry of Truth-London

PostPosted: Sat May 23, 2009 3:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

*Claps*

I'm a bit too tired to fully appreciate it. But I approve Cool
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Nuclearbear, The breaker of forums and the Hitler of happiness
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Moorea



Joined: 23 Mar 2007
Posts: 383
Location: Hong Kong

PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 2:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well done, Amaunator!!!

You use some wonderful descriptive imagery in there, with some adjectives that are rarely used, if even understood by the youth of today. I like that:) I'm still absolutely stunned that English is not your first language, yet you can write like this. Reminds me of reading Joseph Conrad.

There were a few parts that felt a bit rough, not quite polished down just yet. I'd suggest going through and spacing out your paragraphs as well, which won't change any meaning, just make it easier to read (especially for old folks like me with tired eyeballs). Between chapters 1 & 2, is something missing? A cut & paste error perhaps? I felt like something was missing.

Will you be adding more? I hope so!
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Life is great until the toilet paper runs out....
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Mon May 25, 2009 8:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm glad you took the time out - away from all the exacerbated trials of life and school(s!) - to comment Smile.

And well, I had a head-start on most non-natives I'd say Wink. I consider myself semi-native, because English definitely is a "mother language" just like Dutch. I spoke, wrote, read and thought it by the time I was twelve. But then again, I do not have people talking English around me constantly, so I do lack some fluency when I have to speak it Wink. But really, that's some high praise you're giving. Thank you Surprised.

I would have expected that some of the imagery may have seemed a bit corny or the language just a tad too old. But if you're fine with it, I'm convinced that it's not as bad as I had envisioned. After all, I liked the Dakrim Cycle (to give the collection of stories around Dakrim a dramatic flair Wink) and the Snapshots because they were well written, interesting and modern! Very Happy

The spacing isn't off :p. I simply forget to space it again (I did an overhaul in Word and afterwards copy/pasted the text back into the post, but I'd forgotten that I use indents in Word instead of spaced paragraphs. I only space paragraphs - and it's advised that one only spaces paragraphs - when there is a change of scene(ry) Wink. But I'll go in and do some extra enters. No problem! Smile

There is nothing missing between chapters one and two (except for a stray "N" ("Neither", not "either") which I had forgotten). But it was meant to feel like something was missing. The interaction between Kala and the mysterious entity cuts off at the end of the first chapter like someone cutting the wire in the midst of a telephone conversation Very Happy. Chapter two is actually just the split second after Kala awakens from that "dream".

There's still a bit of polishing to be done, though. I know intimately how the story will continue, but since so many groundwork is laid in the first few chapters, I want them to be perfect first. There is, however, more in the works Wink. I have a week of exams now and then I have two more exams (English). I'll start writing within the week, though Wink. But as it said in the opening post, I'm not going to be seduced into being able to give periodic updates Very Happy. But I'll keep you posted! And thanks again for the comments. I hope you land on all fours again. It's a bitch to have to start from scratch with papers, dissertations and what have you...

P.S: Don't mind the smileys. Post-Examinatory Stress Very Happy
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...


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Farsider



Joined: 10 Aug 2005
Posts: 913

PostPosted: Mon Jun 08, 2009 10:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nice, I'm glad you decided to share this.

I'm very interested in where this is going (if you don't decide to continue, then mayhap you could give an overview of the general story arc you had in mind? Better to just continue it, though) I'm kinda hoping that Kala decides to give Kael a little smackdown. That guy off as a real jerk to me. A bit of sibling rivalry, maybe?
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Amaunator



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 26, 2009 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shall I tide us all over with a tidbit of story while we eagerly await Destron's newest chapters, maybe? Smile

After six months of agonising over the first chapters of Kala'duin, I finally kicked myself and wrote more! It took me amazingly little time to write this next chapter; but I dread to think how slowly later chapters will be written if I can't get them out the door in a single stretch, considering I have this ridiculous need to completely read through the entire story again when I open it in Word Very Happy. Believe it or not, but I've made rereading into a vice!

(Note: I did rewrite parts of the first three chapters in case you're bored Very Happy.)


Chapter Four:
Caught in the Head-Light


"So, Prince Kala’duin, show Arthas what you’ve got,” was all that Uther commanded as the three of them had settled into the regular training room two days after the knights’ arrival. The walls of the court were bedecked with every kind of armament or weapon known to man or elf and garishly decorated with Silvermoon emblems. Despite the sometimes poor taste in ornamentation, all of them were of impeccable quality and utility. Except for a couple of staves. They were heirlooms and looked insufficiently patched up. They had been reinforced with bands of steel and ivory and a ball of unidentifiable material was socketed at the top of each staff.

On command the two fighters eagerly locked swords, Kala wielding his double falchions – his latest favourite – and Arthas resorting to divine magic and his trusty two-handed hammer. Before metal could mix with metal, however, Arthas spoke a string of words that illuminated the chamber and made his hammer shine with tendrils of a golden glow waxing off its surface. Kala blinked and let the aftermath of the spell wash over his mind, suddenly a-buzz with activity, sparking a vast network of magical awareness. It was just a simple featherweight spell, but the power that created it was deep and immersing.

The split second of confusion put Kala in a disadvantage that he cursed himself for as he had to dodge the hammer swinging past him and retreat back into stance. A huff and some mental suppression later and he was back on the offensive with a parry from his right that he, swivelling on his right leg, turned into an attack on Arthas’s right flank.

Another word of power later and Kala was struck backwards by the force of an expanding magical shield that phased like heated air between the two fighters. He duck-rolled back into a crouch and smirked, looking sideways to catch Uther’s grin. Elves, ever sprightly, have ways to combat gravity and perform some astounding caprioles when they want to. The somersault starting from crouched position was no less than a superhuman feat, and begat the young elf the advantage of standing on top of his enemy’s shield, outside of his range.

“Uther, say something,” was all Arthas could utter as he jumped and swung his hammer in the vain attempt to hit a laughing Kala.

“He’s your adversary, boy. I’ve taught you near to all I know. It’s up to you to be… creative,” Uther said, his dark and deep voice not limited to commanding and not unkind to banter or laughter either.

In an interesting gambit, the young paladin hurled his hammer straight upwards – luckily the training court’s ceiling was domed and, in typical High Elven style, high. Kala saw the move coming as soon as Uther had murmured the word “creative”, and for a minute considered blocking the hammer, but that would be poor sportsmanship, or so his battlemaster was inclined to intone when Kala was gaining the upper hand or playing him for a fool.

He jumped off the bubble as it dissipated and feigned a stumble to the floor, cringing and grabbing his ankle, “Aah, damn it!” making Uther blink. He hadn’t seen him twist his foot. In fact, he had hardly touched the floor, it had seemed. Arthas had been too busy plucking his hammer out of the air to notice and Uther didn’t betray the trick with a typical frown while Arthas quickly surveyed the scene. Arthas sighed but rushed in to deliver a fierce hammer blow; he knew he could go all out. There was no injury or death he or Uther couldn’t fix. And this prince needed a lesson.

Instants before the blow would hit Kala against the chest, a bright bubble of sparkling lights rushed out of Kala and threw Arthas off his footing, eliciting a gasp and widespread eyes from Uther. As slithery as a snake, Kala grabbed his falchions from the floor and made for Arthas, crossing his blades underneath his throat from the back. “One move, Prince Arthas, and your neck will feel awfully lonely without its head,” he grinned.

“A- Astounding!”Uther managed as he stepped in to end the sparring match. He plucked Arthas up from the floor so quickly and firlmy that he nearly left him beheaded. “Heh, close call there, Arthas. I’m not sure I could have revived you from that wound, me-boy,” he joked whilst gazing at Kala. “Kala’duin, did you receive any prior training in the use of the Light? I wasn’t aware of it; you should have–“

“No, Uther, I haven’t,” Kala cut the paladin short. “And as to your next question. Yes, I picked up on how to cast that bubbly shield on the spot.” He looked like a buffoon with his grin from ear to ear. Humans often forget how childish Elves up to the age of fifty can still be. This boy, because he was hardly more than that, was a paragon of childish innocence and as proud of performing a breakneck feat as he was at finishing a full plate of vegetables for dinner. He could have been no greater contrast to the severe Kael’thas and it had served neither of them both well, but apart from this puerile attitude, Kala was intellectually more astute than most Humans are at Kala’s age. Having your private library helps, though.

Arthas, contrary to expectations, was amazed instead of grouchy at the sight of this – annoyingly gloating – prodigy. He knew that the Light was its own master and it did not abide abuse. Kala had surely not undeservingly been granted access to the Divine. But in Arthas’s mind a thought lurked: Now comes the real test. Is he worthy of wielding it?

“Well, then,” Uther fell silent for a second. “It seems we’ve been keeping you back for nothing, young prince. Not only did you learn and perform a completely new form of magic, but you learned to adapt its properties all at the same time. As you’ll see, the Light is not a magic of combat and offensive, in the rule. Therefore, I think we should try a simple heal spell to acquaint you with its real strength,” And he demonstrated, cradling a warm flame in his hands, on how to instill rejuvenation and refreshment. As the crawling flame’s light trickled onto the Princes with their weapons hanging loosely to their sides, the room darkened. The heal spell radiated hope, courage and recovery and all three of them smiled as Uther released the force of the spell, and sunlight burst up around them like leaves unfolding from hidden buds. Their bruises were gone and the adrenaline rush that had earlier beset them faded. “Now you try, Prince Kala’duin,” he beckoned, slightly enjoying the smiles on his pupils’ faces and thought to himself, “Healing people: a gig that never grows old.”

“As I said before, Uther, you can call me Kala.” The Prince shone, his countenance overlaid with maturity and royalty without losing its attractive lustre. His words instilled acquiescence in the two knights. They too were overcome by the power of the Light, but it resonated with Kala’duin; to the knights, a church-less god had found a home inside the Elven body. The moment passed and a bright young lad with a mane of umber tresses, who was strangely tall (so a Human would say), smiled at them as he geared himself for a novel spell. As with Uther, a flame jumped to life in Kala’s hands. The paladin beckoned Kala on, telling him to inch force into the spell like one empties one jar into another without spilling a drop. But the two knights soon found out that Kala’s proverbial jar was far from empty, even after it had superceded the intensity Uther had bestowed on his spell.

“Kala, don’t go any further! Release it now, or take it back! This cannot be healthy for you!” a sudden outburst from Arthas rang in the pitch-dark room of which the high windows appeared as black holes. Throughout the palace lights went out and people held their breath as their hearts raced in anticipation. From inside Silvermoon they could see a darkening of the midday sky in the general direction of the palace. They were not afraid nor were they curious. Something extraordinary was happening, but they were not of a mind to find out what it was. Kala, the last one smiling, was the only one not scared out of his wits by the experiment. He would have continued but for an intrusive measure by Uther that stemmed the flow of energy and released the spell before Kala would heal them to an angelic state. A violent, violet wave with adamantine and silver foam burst forth from the training room and swept through walls, ceilings, doors and windows. People beyond the palace walls were knocked off their feet from the shockwave, while people inside the palace stumbled to their knees, sheltering their heads.

In the aftermath, a wail for redemption echoed between the marble halls and mithril door frames. For another ten minutes nothing but sobbing was heard inside the palace; liberating tears were spent while thoughts of the highest virtue coursed through one and all, from the head baker to the guardsman, from the greenkeepers to the stable boys, from the King to Uther himself. And Kala lay on his back, slammed down, catatonic from glee and magical revelation.
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...


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Farsider



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PostPosted: Sat Dec 26, 2009 8:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great to see that you're continuing this story. I was just thinking about it a few days ago (honestly!)

Reading now..
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey all, I thought, I'll throw in another tidbit here Very Happy. It's getting kind of quiet and, well, this seemed like as good a time as any! I've only recently started writing this again in earnest. Luckily - so I think Rolling Eyes I haven't lost any of my writing skill. But I should probably let you decide for yourself Wink. Enjoy!

Chapter Five:
Sleeping Beauty


“Prince Arthas, I assure you that Prince Kala’duin will not awaken before nightfall and that I will have a servant fetch you if…”

“That won’t be necessary,” Arthas smiled as he performed the latest alternation between pacing and sitting next to the bed they had lain Kala on to recover.

“Please, good prince,” the court physician pleaded with Arthas, “you must rest. You were closest to the blast – if one can call it that –, and have yet to take any sustenance since noon. It’s not healthy for you –“

Arthas smiled, “No, but neither was it healthy for Uther, and he’s in a council meeting. Why shouldn’t I make myself useful?” Arthas was inching closer to losing his patience with this doctor – he would have let his loathing for the elven doctor escalate into a professional feud any other day –, but a voice inside him countered his impatience and his arrogance.

The physician, too, rather disliked being talked to this way by a human child. If he had not recognised the note of concern ringing in Arthas’s voice, he would have had him forcibly removed from the room. Instead, he took a final look at Kala’duin, who was being guarded by a dour-faced Arthas, and exited. Arthas could hear him informing the guard outside the door where he might be found should anything happen. “And do not tarry if anything does happen!” the elf crisply intoned.

Now that he finally had the room to himself again, Arthas reclined in the chair and closed his eyes for a moment. He could discern the faint breathing of Kala disturbing his own and opened his eyes again. His eyes wandered around the room, with its unlit braziers on mounted pegs, its richly coloured curtains and the sparse furniture besides the enormous bed. It resembled in nothing to his own bed chamber in Lordaeron Castle. In a comforting manner, this chamber was utilitarian without losing the lived-in ambiance of everyday rooms. Yet, there were no images, no portrait of the child and his family, no painted landscapes of the boy’s homeland, nor any cloaks haphazardly slung over a chair or bedstead. Arthas’s own room was filled with such paraphernalia of the heart and for a moment wished he were at castle Lordaeron.

He turned his gaze to the slight figure of Kala’duin. The elf seemed drawn into himself, Arthas thought, reposed in a shell; a duckling, it seemed. That was an unexpected thought and there was nothing he could do but laugh at it. An eerie look of bliss smoothened Kala’s hunched features and drew Arthas in with an unknown attraction. His movements preceded thought: he shifted onto the bed and felt the soft threading of the phoenix’s wing embedded in the coverlet; his hand reached gingerly for Kala’s hair. His mind could not stop revolving around the issue of this elf. Elves were ageless, conceited and precocious; this one worst of all. But in no way could he deny him that birthright. Not this elf. One deed had sparked a pure divinity inside this frail creature. And those eyes…

He hovered closer to Kala’s face as the boy prince awoke with a start and blinked before looking up into Arthas’s eyes. They reminded Kala of his mother’s. A pause as their eyes crossed.

“How long was I-“

“Out of it?” the smile, which Arthas had so far retained, evaporated. “You’ve had us worried all day. It’s nearly evening.” He stood up and opened the door only slightly. One of the guards strode away almost immediately. “Now, you have approximately five minutes before the entire council comes storming into this room. Tell me; why, by the abyss, did you do that? Are you insane? In a human city you’d have killed people! Hundreds maybe!”

Any more excitement and Arthas would have been jumping up against the ceiling. Kala was at the same time amazed and hesitant. Yeah, he thought, this is really bothering him. “Arthas,” he held up a hand with more effort than he was used to, “calm down,” and sent a small orb of divine magic Arthas’s way.

“Okay, that was unnecessary. I do not need a soothing spell. Least of all from you. How did you do that?” the man caught himself. “How can you even perform that spell for Light’s sake? More importantly, how did you cast such a strong healing spell and control it the way you did? There isn’t a person in the palace left unaffected by it, but I have seen the effects of such strong magic before and they never turn out well. Maybe you were lucky, but I don’t think so. You did something with that healing spell, didn’t you?” he rattled on, pouring out the train of thoughts he had been pacing over and pondering during his wake. And suddenly his chin snapped up as he heard Kala laughing, giggling really. “What’s so funny?” he narrowed his eyes.

“You look funny when you’re worried, Arthas. It’s all,” but he could not control his giggle.

Poor thing, Arthas thought, he’s probably still feeling the after effects. Maybe Uther will have to restrict his magical abilities; he hasn’t even considered that yet, I guess. He looks so young and inexperienced. He had to shrug to keep from staring out into an oblivion of consequences, most shockingly because he knew that Kala’duin could not see things his way.

“I really mean it though, it makes you look like more of an adult than just a bored princeling. My brother looks like an idiot when he’s worrying, but you don’t,“ Kala taunted Arthas, who was nervously trying to find a way to break the news to Kala about the kind of sanctions he might be facing. But instead of picking up on Arthas’s worries, Kala snapped his fingers and turned on his bedchamber lighting. The braziers flickered violet before erupting in a red glow that drowned out the sun’s last rays.
“Sit down, Arthas, the council members will be here momentarily,” he said with sly overtones that laced his words and a smile that could have dealt anyone a blow of admiration.

This boy is no ordinary elf, Arthas thought as he went for his seat.
Not a moment later, the door opened and a congregation of old men rushed in, stammeringly tailed by the doctor who was trying to grant his patient at least half an hour more to recover.

“I agree that Kala’duin isn’t fully prepared for a hearing, my lords,” Arthas attested with a nervous glance at Kala. “He still displays certain after effects from the blast.”

“Oh come on,” Kala interrupted, “I feel just fine. Like I’ve slept for a month on end! And I’ve a hunger rivalling that of a starving man’s,” he frowned at Arthas. He did feel fine; the spell worked as it should have, but a strange sentence came to him as thoughts whirled through his mind: powers you have always known; keep them hidden! Where did that come from? What had he done? Why had he done it? Roiling inside him was a paradox of inhibitions: this power was new to him and he felt curious to explore. He understood it, but it was forbidden to him and he had been made to forget all about it. And now he remembered; he remembered what he did and why he shouldn’t have done it. It was somehow too much all at the same time. The outward appearance of his thought process showed only in a look of contrition, one his mother knew was genuine and troubling. Forsaking the formality that having all the other members of the council present imparted on the scene, she rushed to her favourite son and comforted him.

“Aleisia, the King hissed,.” But she refused to hear him, deaf to all but her son’s sorrow. Instead he turned to the other council members: his elder son Kael’thas, by decree of his royal lineage; the Grand Magister, the leader of elven magi and chosen by means of arcane display and mastery when a current Grand Magister deceases; the Ranger-General, the nominal head of the non-magical High Elven army, affirmed by the King; the Court Magister, Royal Vizier Arridiel Nat’Remar whose main function was to keep the King apprised of new advances in all kinds of magic along with shielding the palace and the royal family from magical detection, invasion or domination; several elder members of the Convocation of Silvermoon were also present, a ruling body of elven patriarchs whose Houses epitomised the height of High Elven civilisation and achievement. Some of them could rival House Sunstrider ancestor for ancestor, in terms of nobility, achievement and esteem. As a temporary advisor Uther Lightbringer had also been included in the meeting and was standing out against the mob of garishly dressed elves.

“Prince Kala’duin, Angelic Apparition – a name you have received deservedly – do you consider yourself fit to hear the questions of a group of nosy old men?” an ambitious and insincere elven lord bowed his head to Kala. Magister Drathir, always out to curry favour with his liege, had made a show of treating Kala as an adult although he full well doubted any elf no older than two hundred years to have a speck of maturity.

The King squared his jaw; how dare this man make a political battlefield of his youngest son’s latest gaffe, he thought to himself. And to his face too. He had to gear himself to speak out with as neutral a demeanour as possible. “My friends, I suggest we continue our meeting, with Kala’duin present, in the Lithien Belore – the Hall of the Sun – where all of us can enjoy supper as well. This room is hardly fit to hold all of us and I am sure you would all prefer to sit.”

Appreciative glances from the gathered elves made it so and the King beckoned invitingly to Magister Drathir to walk with him; best get it over with, he conceded in the hopes of quenching for the time being the man’s need to orbit powerful men. Like any king he had his chorus of talking heads, most of whom would mumble “yay” in their sleep if their wife so much as bumped against them. He could abide them for he had trusted servants to discuss most everything with and it served him well to have the least possible amount of virulent opponents. After all, the King was getting old and he was tired of governing; the autumn years of his rule signified the waning flame that was once the indomitable spirit of Anasterian Sunstrider though he was still well loved and highly esteemed by all High Elves.


When all were seated in the lofty Lithien, salvers were served and lamps were lit, the King signaled Uther to speak up for all to hear.

The stately human stepped to the fore of the semi-circle made up of seats and tables. “As I have recounted before, my lords, the three of us, Arthas, Kala’duin and myself, were practising in the arms room. I ordered the two princes to engage each other in a duel and observed to my own astonishment that Kala’duin is an exceptional prodigy both in armed warfare and divine spellcasting. I showed him a rudimentary heal spell, which he copied to perfection. And then he,” the strong voice halted, or dropped like a stone from the sky rather, “he went beyond the call, beyond my demands. In exceeding my wildest dreams he also aroused fear in me as the power of the spell grew beyond all proportion. At no particular point, but one that I considered safe, I cut into the spellweaving of the young prince, which unleashed a blast of healing magic, such as you have felt yourself.”

Uther had been quiet most of the afternoon, lost in thought at the ability and potential of Kala’duin, but most of his contemplation had tended towards an admiration tinged with fear, an awe beyond words. Normally he was an excellent judge of character, but he had missed the mark in this case by a mile and it had nearly cost innocent lives. There were still so many questions unanswered, however, which added to his apprehension. He was as eager as the other council members to hear Kala’s story, but trepidation warned him to ease the information out of the boy and he hoped the King would take as strong a hand as possible in the examination to not unduly strain his son.

The congregation had been seated hierarchically, the King in a central position, flanked by his wife and elder son. Kael’thas next addressed the knight in dusty armour, Arthas; it was a minor breach in etiquette, but here was a witness whose testimony had been left out. “Arthas, how would you describe the spell my younger brother unleashed upon this city? Do you concur with your mentor? Do you reckon that it was just an inflated heal spell?” It was a simple enough question, a fair one too, and the King allowed it.

As he got up, Arthas surveyed the elves and Uther, who had rejoined their ranks at the table. Arthas himself had been left to sit at the very end of the right-hand side of King Sunstrider. He gazed Kael’thas straight in the eyes. He’d never liked this pretentious mage. Ever since his last stay at Dalaran there had grown a need to compete between them and in this situation Arthas could outsmart him. “Not by my reckoning,” he smirked.
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...
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Farsider



Joined: 10 Aug 2005
Posts: 913

PostPosted: Sun Aug 15, 2010 5:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's been a long time since the last update. I hope that you keep this going. You've got me interested in where Kala is going to end up. I'd say he's either destined for something huge and great, beyond where he's at now, or he's going to be dead in some spectacular fashion, as he doesn't make an appearance in WCIII. Either way, I expect (demand) great things of him.

Whatever you do, don't stop writing!
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Amaunator



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Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Mon Aug 16, 2010 8:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the encouragement and compliments, Farsider Very Happy. The ending isn't quite definite yet, but there are indeed a couple of ways for him to snuff it spectacularly or some nooks and crannies he could hide out in eventually Very Happy.

But that's still somewhat further in the future. First we have a new chapter (I've had this one for a while already, but I was debating to myself on how to handle it and whether I should even post it here; I guess time will tell).

This next chapter is possibly offensive and maybe not even fit for postage on these boards - which the Great Albatross himself has always tried to keep from getting M-rated, as far as I know. But, times have changed. As far as I can see, only three people still use these boards and I think we're all grown ups - never you mind that I've read far smuttier things in common literature lately, so this shouldn't be that hard to take.

Either way, if Albatross posts a veto or anyone feels offended by the content of the next chapter, they need only say so, though I would prefer to keep things civil and hope to receive a personal message about it instead of a public denunciation Wink. I can always edit the content - filter it if you will - and I'm not too proud a writer to do so, but I will offer up the genuine writing first for all to enjoy in its purity.


Chapter Seven:
Confessions in an Unlit Room


Hundreds of lamps glittered in Silvermoon, but the Sunstrider Spire alone shone as a sun in the gathering dark of midnight. On the outskirts of the palace, solitary in his darkened bedchamber, Kala dangled his feet over the edge of the bed.

“Are you still up?” The lengthened shadow of a long-haired Human, framed by a lancet arch, stepped forward out of the light of the hallway. “Can I come in?”

As he closed the door, Arthas scanned the moonlit, west-facing room, adjusting as he recalled the sparse surroundings. The plain colours were broken up by painted or sculpted insignia. The seals of House Sunstrider, carved in glimmering crown gold, stood out against the crystal rays of the Mother Moon that dressed Kala in a sheen of white. “Sit with me, Arthas, and tell me of the council’s decision.”

“Many spoke out in your favour and convinced the King to spare you, but it has come at a cost. The news of your feat will spread fast through the city, as per the King’s commands. Uther brought me up to speed on how elves feel about the divine art. It’s funny that my feelings for the arcane are likewise.” He slumped down next to Kala and smirked.

“I was brought up to look down on divine magic, Arthas, but I was also taught the tenets of the Light which says that no one is below me. I know that my country was made great by the arcane and yet it is still divided between the hope of equality and the might of the arcane. I know that the Light will make a stronghold in this city, but regardless of which of the two will hold most sway in the end, they are both important forces and deserve respect.” He smiled and lifted his face to the light of the moon. “You see, the white moon, the White Lady, is just as necessary as the blue moon, the Blue Child, to balance out the tides of this world.” An uncertain expression took hold of Kala. His unconsciousness had triggered strong, old memories and wisdom beyond his years, but they beckoned from far away and every time the journey took longer for Kala to get back to his own self.

Arthas too had noticed a change come over Kala. “You said that you will not speak of your actions. But I asked you the same question before and you never answered, Kala,” he blushed at using the Prince’s private name. They had not yet known each other for a week. The paladin sensed he would still decline, however. “Please, Kala, I have to know. You exert a strange force of attraction. I think it is the power in you that is calling to me, for I have always prayed for the power to defend my people. You must understand the burden of princehood as well as your brother does; will you not aid me, or teach me, maybe, in the ways of the Light?”

“Teach you?” Kala’duin laughed. “I thought you meant to teach me. Is that not why you have come? Fate can hold such irony, but it is true that I am commanded to silence. I don’t know why. I don’t even know by whom, but I cannot refuse. I- I’m sorry, Arthas.” He looked away and sighed. For all the memories that had appeared out of the fog in his mind, there remained plenty shrouded in obscurity and Kala wondered if his subconscious had not edged him on to cast that healing spell for the purpose of regaining those memories. If so, it was a shame that Uther had cut his spellweaving short when he did, he thought. I am too tired now to try anew, and not far enough away to be assured of secrecy.

“But you must, Kala!” Arthas spoke urgently. “If you are not careful the Magisters might tap your powers for their own uses, or the Ranger-General would sweep you along on a dangerous campaign into the heart of enemy territory. They both spoke out in the clearest terms at the meeting but for the desire to see you locked away or dead by the blade. Were you not a trained swordsman and blessed by the Light, I would fear for your safety. When you would not speak the truth, the council decided to tell lies instead. The truth you speak of endures in your mind alone, but if you tell me I can set the record straight when the dust settles,” he pleaded.

Not in vain, for Kala could hear honesty ringing in his ears and he did fear for his own life. Even now the Grand Magister was trying to penetrate the magical barriers that shielded all royals from prying eyes, and there was nothing Kala could do to stop him for fear of breaking an oath he had never taken. But if he never agreed to it, was it then valid? He could rely on the Royal Vizier for the time being; sharing his secret with one other person would at least lighten his heart and his mood, Kala thought. “You are right, Arthas, but I urge you to keep this to yourself for as long as possible.

“The spell I cast is a mystery to me. What I do know is that it was focused on myself and I think that, had you let it take its course, none of you would have felt any of it. I can’t be certain though. These last days I haven’t been certain of anything; my mind has been filling itself with powerful magic. The spells you and Uther cast today have awakened in me a hidden potency.

"I can feel myself gaining strength now that I’ve eaten; my perceptions are becoming more and more uncanny. For so long I haven’t felt the tiniest sliver of magic, but inside me roll wave upon wave of the arcane and divine. I fear these forces almost as much as I do the future ahead of me,” Kala confessed to Arthas, confiding in him his deepest emotions. Something strange had occurred. Answers, Kala thought, answers are what I desperately need. But only questions came to him. The whys, the hows and the what nows drowned out every other thought and slowed Kala’s speech.

“Tell me about them. It might set your mind at ease,” Arthas pressed gently and laid his hand on Kala’s shoulder. “Just remember that nothing can harm you here.”

Kala answered Arthas’s smile and continued. “I will. I’ve been sorting this out since I came back from the Lithien Belore. You see, the Light resides in all things. It is at home in rock, flesh and crystal alike. The stars, the suns and the moons,” Kala pointed up at the densely star-packed vault of sky, “they are all born of divine energy. The beginning of All was lit by divine energy. It is what keeps us alive, it is the air we breathe and the food we consume. Arcane energy is not exactly its opposite, but it complements it. You see, the space between one star and the next, one man and the other, is filled with arcane energy. The arcane is what sets us apart.

"A mage can draw his energy from the Beyond, the dark void that is filled with emptiness and energy; at a base level the Beyond draws strength from the Twisting Nether, and so can a mage, but it is a dangerous and volatile source. Other founts exist of course,” and he pointed to the island of Quel’Danas far to the north, the lights of which swayed on the water surface.

“But it is rare for arcane energy, or mana, to coalesce the way it does in the Sunwell at Quel’Danas. Only a limited number of comparable nodes exist in this world. Strangely, these nodes balance each other out, but so do the arcane and divine energies as a whole; they are synergetic and run along parallel lines. Take this pomegranate, for instance,” Kala took from a fruit dish at his side a pomegranate that flashed a hint of its orange and red colour in the dim starlight.

“The pomegranate consists of divine energy just like we all do and the air around it is tinged with the arcane, though we cannot see it; they battle on the barrier, in this case the shell of the fruit. Now, if I drop it,” he let the fruit tumble to the carpeted floor, he heard the soft shell rip and spill its sweet insides, “the forces of the arcane are strong enough to crack open the shell, but they are not strong enough to keep it from falling to the earth, which is also enriched by divine energy. That is why mastery of the Light bequeaths superior attraction and charisma, Arthas.” He reached down, plucked the pomegranate from the floor and put it back in the decorated dish, magically restoring its integrity and cleaning up the mess.

“Wow, that’s amazing, Kala,” Arthas stared at the enchanting elf and crept closer to him. “Tell me more. How can you reach for divine energy? Is there more to it than prayer?”

“Prayer?” Kala giggled. “Prayer does help, but you don’t need it. You heard me right when I said divine energy rests in all of us. Like blood it courses through us, stronger in some than in others, but it is always there. It has to be, but, as you mentioned, if you have too much divine energy in yourself, more than your spirit can take on, you may die. When someone dies, the spark they lose is the accumulation of life and divine energy. There is always some energy left for fire or insects to feed on, or even for necromancers to recall or read the dead with, but it is a fraction of the original state. One must be brave to wield so much energy, to capture it from his surroundings and hold it within himself. Conviction in oneself – not necessarily faith in another – is your greatest ally when dealing with the divine; it will open up your soul to the energy you seek. Because physical light is a pure manifestation of the divine, it is most easily drawn in for spellcasting. That is why the chamber darkened when we cast our spells,” Kala explained and gazed with pleasure on the awe-struck face of Arthas whose mouth was opening wide with consecutive gasps of astonished disbelief. And the divine is also, Kala thought, very conducive to emotions, which is why I can do this.

Kala reached out to Arthas, put a hand to the young paladin’s cheek and kissed him on his stunned lips that still quivered with intellectual delight. Arthas exhaled and moved his hand from Kala’s shoulder to his back and returned the gesture. They were both tired and feeling the after effects from Kala’s grand and intoxicating spell, but most of all they were alone in a night suffused with divine energy.

Arthas manoeuvered Kala onto the bed after they had both pulled off their footgear and took the young elf’s head between his strong hands. They kissed once more, more vigorously and with a stronger desire to explore each other. Kala did not feel the guilt Arthas was feeling; there were many haunts in Silvermoon that encouraged concurrent activity. For High Elves, the physical was not worth troubling over; only the arcane was deserving of deep contemplation.

Arthas had moved on to Kala’s slender neck that was adorned with a garnet-inlaid necklace the colour of dark gold. Kala was heaving as Arthas loosened the knots in his silk shirt. Kala was looking forward to taking Arthas’s stylish buff jerkin off, but let his hands wander some first. Arthas was right, nothing would happen to Kala here. The young elf saw to it personally as he wordlessly erected field after field of archaic magical defenses to evade detection. Consequences be damned, he thought.

They struggled with Kala’s undergarment for a moment, but once the tunic slipped out of the trousers Arthas slipped his cool hands underneath and inched it up, kissing and caressing the bared, smooth skin as he advanced. To Arthas the experience was new and exhilarating, but he couldn’t help shrugging off the Light’s teachings and his people’s customs, which advised to stay carnal desires. But maybe Kala was right? Were conviction and belief in the self more important than faith, then he was limiting his intake of magical powers by muddling his conscience. Had he not entertained instances of amazement, awe and atonement at the hands of this elf already?

Kala's arousement swelled to a greater peak when their lips locked again and he wrestled Arthas for the top spot. His hands grabbed hold of the umber tresses of this handsome catch lying supine on his bed and the princes continued their kiss with a play of tongues. All kinds of magic were going on at the moment. A shadow and a memory fell upon the magical barriers for an instant, but Kala forgot them as soon as he reached inside the parted jerkin. They were both half bared, one lean and shaven with subtle muscles running havoc in amid the softness of his skin, the other was hard and angular, with taut muscles from years of practise and training, a slight beard and a shadow of hair on his skin. They strained against each other, they undulated against each other and held each other close.

Kala’s hands shivered as he undid the straps on Arthas’s pants, their hands bumped into each other as Arthas reached for Kala’s trouser string, and both their pants came undone, revealing their pent up sexual energy. Their hands wandered each other’s bodies, exploring nipples, belly buttons and cocks, sometimes stealing a taste of each other, moving faster and closer together, moving to a universal beat.
They were approaching a trancelike state, stimulating each other to a transcendental level, their physical, sexual and divine energies coagulating, coming together on a metaphysical level and pouring forth in a moment of utter abandon and liberty.
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the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

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destron



Joined: 25 Aug 2007
Posts: 262

PostPosted: Tue Aug 17, 2010 1:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Let me preface this with an apology for not reading this sooner. Considering all that you've done for me, such carelessness is really inexcusable on my part. Embarassed

So far I've read the first three chapters, and I'm very impressed by your vivid and lush description of Quel'thalas. You really bring the wealth of the elven nation to life, a quality enhanced by the formalism of court.

I'll definitely be reading more tomorrow and over the next few days!
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Fri Aug 20, 2010 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's not that long, so you'll be through it in a jiffy Razz. Take your time. Enjoy it Very Happy.

Sadly, I think I haven't even edited the first chapters yet since a couple months ago, and I made modifications since then. But it's such a hassle to put the text in all the time, because I've got it laid out entirely differently in Word, so I have to manually add in the enters for every paragraph.

Oh well, I hope you'll enjoy it all the same. Be sure to give some criticism! I could use more opinions on this thing. Wink
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...
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Farsider



Joined: 10 Aug 2005
Posts: 913

PostPosted: Thu Aug 26, 2010 2:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It feels like the dynamism and loquaciousness of the writing has jumped tremendously from the first to current chapter. It feels like the quality of the writing has improved; it seems like it must have been fun to write, and it is fun to read as well.

Regarding the latest chapter, I'm not sure that I really felt the reasoning behind Arthas being so willing to ask for lessons from Kala. I wasn't sure how the arrogant paladin went to almost begging for a philosophy lecture from the recently-comatose, confused youth. It's just my opinion, but I would have expected Arthas to have been a bit less inclined to believe Kala's fantastical and unproven claims about voices in his head and great hidden powers.
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Amaunator



Joined: 03 Dec 2005
Posts: 2074
Location: Belgium ... innocuous but intrepid!

PostPosted: Thu Aug 26, 2010 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You do have a very meritous point there!

It's so obvious I'm slapping myself over the head for that one; guess I wrote it in too much of a spur of the moment. If you see it disappearing (and maybe resurfacing in some way down the line), don't worry or fret Very Happy.
_________________
the sun may melt the rain
may rinse the sky may sink
the clouds may meet the dirt
may drop your heart may heal

feelings of love you love
fluttering hearts you hate
revealing souls you love
breaking spirits you hate that

the sun...
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message MSN Messenger
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