- He is Born -
The black robed figure anxiously paced the floor awaiting the birth of the queen’s first born. It would be her only child, as the man intended to have the queen killed after suckling the infant. He could not take the chance, that upon adulthood, the child would learn of its true heritage and seek revenge against him. The magician had big plans for the future and his demise was not a part of it.
The man knew this extraordinary infant would be born with a birth mark that would be recognizable to him alone. He had learned that from the demonic book he'd acquired years ago. He suddenly turned at the sound of the queen’s agonizing scream. “Is it coming yet?” he asked, but the birthing woman did not look his way not having the ability to hear his voice being deaf and dumb. He walked over and shook the woman by the shoulder and made signs asking such. She shook her head yes signifying she understood and pointed to the queen. The man saw that the babe’s head was crowning. The midwife reached her hands to the woman and waited patiently. The queen screamed loudly as the child fought its way fully into this world; her loud cries filling the cell as the infant was finally born and drew in its first breath.
“It’s about time,” he said aloud. “Well? Tell me woman. Is it deformed? Does it have all its limbs?” he signed once again. The midwife scanned the infant for defects and shook her head in response. The child appeared to be in good health and its lungs certainly seemed strong enough judging from the loud wails issuing from its mouth, the man thought. “Clean it and bring it to me,” he commanded as he signed this.
The servant did as her master bid. The man searched the body looking for the birthmark and spotted it just above the right hip. He stared in amazement. The birthmark looked exactly like the picture drawn in the mystical book. It looked like a comet soaring above the earth with a long, fiery tail extending behind it. This then was the child that would fulfill the prophecy.
Can I hold my baby?” the queen asked speaking barely above a whisper. She was weak and exhausted from the long hours of labor. It was a very difficult birth.
The illusionist signed to the midwife to give the infant to the queen as she eagerly awaited her child with open arms. The young woman covered the babe with swaddling and returned it to its mother. The newborn greedily sought his mother’s breasts.
“Ah. A good omen. I’ll make the child hunger for more than mother’s milk to sustain all its needs.”
“You won’t get away with this. The king will soon be here to rescue me.”
“I am aware of that fact your highness. I suppose I shall have to greet him at the main gates, but I can assure you he will never rescue you. Nor will he ever set eyes on his child.”
“You have no army to protect you. His soldiers will destroy your fortress and the king shall kill you.”
“That’s where you’re mistaken my dear.”
“How do you intend to stop him?”
“I have my ways,” the magician smirked.
“I knew Nicolas should have disposed of you years ago. Banishment was not enough to pay for all the atrocities you’ve committed whilst he closed his eyes to your vile deeds. He trusted you, but you betrayed him by trying to corrupt the members of court. You even attempted to sway him to your evil ways. I knew you’d try to find some way to seek vengeance after your attempts to usurp him failed.”
“You’re right. This is a vendetta, but it is much more than that. I shall raise a frightening force so powerful that no one shall be able to equal it. I shall vanquish your kingdom and rule with an iron fist; with your child’s help, of course.”
“One who has been brought forth from the king’s seed will never succumb to such wicked ways.”
“I'm afraid the heir to your kingdom will never learn that fact your majesty. You shan’t be here to inform the child.”
The queen couldn't believe her ears. “But who will suckle the babe? You can’t let a commoner do it. My child is of royal blood.”
“This child is much more than that your highness, but there’s no need to fret your pretty head over this matter yet. I still have need of you.” The man leered as he walked over to the cot and stroked her face.
The queen turned her head in disgust. “If you are thinking of forcing yourself on me, I’ll kill myself first.”
“Not an important loss, but tempting as that is my beauty, my lusts do not include ravishing you. My goals are far grander than what you or anyone else could ever imagine.”
“You shall pay for your wicked ways some day. God shall see to it.”
“Perhaps, but in the meantime I shall take advantage of the gift that he has given me.”
The queen said no more. She looked down at the newborn child as it suckled at her and sighed deeply knowing she would not live to see her child grow to maturity.
- Liam Dunham -
The lad sat before his father at the long, wooden table filled with glass vials of all shapes and sizes. His nerves were on edge and his eyes darted back and forth anxiously between the colored powders inside dozens of tubes. Which one was the right one? He dared not choose wrong and receive his father’s disapproval. Such disapproval always led to a sharp slap across his face. His father was a very impatient man. Liam slowly reached his hand out and grabbed a vial with a reddish, brown powder inside. “Is it this one sir?” he meekly asked.
“Yes. Very good my boy,” his father replied as he allowed a small grin to spread across his face. It appears you have studied very hard for this test. That will be enough for today. You may retire to you chambers now. You’ve earned your rest.”
“Thank you sir,” Liam said as he let his breath out slowly. He’d been up since before dawn. Today had been an important one. His father had just tested him on a special incantation that he was expected to perform later in the week. The procedure included using all sorts of odd chemicals and concoctions. He had been worried about passing and studied for hours on end. He’d memorized the chemicals that were needed to induce the spell and prayed that he wouldn’t get them jumbled up in his head when testing began. He could finally breath a sigh of relief. He’d made his father proud.
Liam bid his father goodnight and grabbed the torch to light his way through the corridors of the castle. One had to know their way through these dark, dank hallways. They were set up in maze fashion. If the boy didn’t know the way by heart, he’d be wandering these corridors for days on end.
The lad made it through the castle’s hallways to his chambers. They were dark and stark of furniture. He had a cot to sleep in and a stand beside it to place a candle to read by. He’d spent many a night sitting on the edge studying until well past dawn. This would not be such a night. Liam wouldn’t have to invoke the spell for three days at most. He could afford to let his mind relax for a while. He was weary and needed sleep.
He doused the torch and darkness enshrouded him. The lad walked over to the bed and sat down, not needing the light to find his way. He didn’t lie down right away. He let the black of night soothe him as it always did. Liam often wondered why the servant’s children demanded light to sleep by. They all seemed to fear the dark. The lad could never understand this unreasonable fear. Darkness was his friend. In the dark of the night, Liam could imagine all sorts of wondrous events. He could see himself standing before a grand army. Bloodied bodies of some unknown foe surrounded him as he imagined himself a great warrior gaining his father's admiration and praise. How Liam craved that.
Kydo did not grant such praise very easily. His displeasure was often handled by harsh slaps to the face. Liam had also felt his father’s whip on his backside many times; especially when he failed to conjure a spell properly. It wasn’t that the boy’s brain was dull or addled. He had a very quick mind. It was just that Liam was afraid to answer a query with a wrong response.
Liam didn’t mind the beatings he had received. He assumed he did deserve them. What he feared most was his father’s scorn. He longed for Kydo’s respect. Only when Liam performed an incantation perfectly did the lad get the sorcerer’s appreciation. Only then would Kydo give the lad a slap on the back, instead of his face. Only then would the boy receive a smile from his father. Only then did Liam’s heart soar above the clouds.
Liam needed Kydo’s love above anything else. That was something the sorcerer never shared with him. The lad didn’t feel the man was even capable of such warmth. His father never told Liam that he loved him. His father had never held him close. He’d never received hugs from his father like the servant’s mothers so frequently gave their children. This often angered him. Why should a mere servant receive such devotion and tenderness? Why could not his father grant such love? Perhaps he was afraid to give of himself again, Liam thought. Kydo never spoke of Liam’s mother other than to say she had died while giving birth to him. Was that why the sorcerer could not bestow his love? Did Kydo not want to suffer pain to his heart again; or was it because he hated the boy for taking his wife away? Liam sighed very deeply. Best not to dwell on such matters, he thought. He laid down and closed his eyes letting his mind wander and soon drifted off to sleep.
Liam jutted his broadsword through his enemy’s gut. Blood spurted from the wound as he pulled the weapon from the defeated warrior. He then moved to the next soldier and swung on him. The man was twice Liam’s size, but the lad did not let that waver his attack. He forced his foe back swinging his sword fiercely as the blades rang out loudly in battle. The soldier retreated from Liam’s vicious blows and was soon devoid of his head.
Liam battled his way past the blackrawbridge and through the gates of the castle constantly screaming out a war cry. His knights followed this courageous young man without hesitation. Blood and fire surrounded them. The lad fearlessly fought his way through the carnage to the very entrance of the keep. A battering ram was brought to the door. Soldiers smashed it against the wooden portal over and over again. It soon weakened and split apart. Liam’s army forced their way through numerous barricades and slew what wasIt left of the enemy. Victory was theirs.
The youth smiled as he walked through the knights shaking their hands and thanking them for winning this battle for his father. They were stunned at his gratitude. No leader had ever bestowed such an honor on them before.
Suddenly a figure dashed from the shadows towards Liam. There was a flash of light that reflected from the many small fires. “A dagger,” someone yelled.
Liam quickly spun around as the figure ran up and stabbed at his back. He grabbed the hand that slashed wildly at him. He was about to jab his sword through this assassin when he caught sight of his eyes. No. This was not a man. This was a female. A mere child at that. Very brave she was. Liam stared into the eyes that glowed from the firelight. Bright blue they were and sparkled defiantly with malice. Her eyes shown with a fierceness that was beyond description, yet he was drawn to them like a moth to a flame.
Liam suddenly awoke from his dream. He’d been having them for quite a while. In his conscious state he’d often daydreamed of leading an army into combat. He wanted so much to prove such courage to his father, but Kydo wouldn’t hear of it. His life was bound for greater things so his father told him. He wouldn’t allow the boy to forfeit his life in battle.
Liam had this reoccurring dream many times. He had assumed it was because he had never taken part in a real battle, but a female had never appeared to him before. This intrigued him. Why should such a figure invade upon his thoughts as she did? Why would he be so attracted to her? Did he not envision this girl to be his enemy? It was her eyes he surmised. They held such fury and passion.
This interpretation might be in err, Liam thought as he felt his manhood rise to full extent beneath the blanket. He was now nearing his third and tenth year; the age when his sexual needs were starting to take possession of him. He often awoke in an aroused state. The lad knew he could take any one of the servants and have his way with them without a word being spoken about such brutish behavior, but he didn’t want to soil himself with those ugly beasts. He wanted a woman of pure blood to be his first experience of manhood. Someone who would willingly give themselves to him. He didn’t know why, but he was troubled by the thought of forcing himself upon a woman. An peculiar idea indeed.
Liam grabbed at himself. He quickly sated his need. He then arose, cleansed and dressed. He went down to the kitchens and had his breakfast while the hounds pestered him for scraps of the meal. He kicked them roughly away.
Kydo had told Liam that he wouldn’t test him on the morrow and gave him the day to do with as he pleased; not an occurrence that often happened. Liam wondered how to spend such free time. He should seek Roland and spend this time practicing his swordsmansip, but he didn’t feel like exerting himself in such a demanding way today. Perhaps he’d spend the day riding in the woods. Yes. That’s what he’d do with his freedom. He would go hunting. The kitchens could well use the fresh meat.
Liam finished his meal and ordered his mount be brought around. As he exited the kitchen he felt proud to own such a magnificent stallion. The beast was black as night without one scar to mar his appearance. Hence, Liam named the steed Perfection.
He walked out of the castle and mounted his horse spurring him to life. He galloped through the main gate and spirited the animal across the drawbridge nearly running down serfs in the process. He rode towards the forest at a fast pace wanting to put the castle far behind him. As Liam entered the woods he knew the dense foliage would hide him from the fortress and the ever reaching eyes of his father.
- Kydo’s Forest -
Liam spurred Perfection through the tangled thickets deep into the woods. He knew he’d find an abundance of creatures to hunt this far in. He thought back to what his father had told him long ago. These forests once belonged to King Nicolas Haydon the First. He’d been slain while trying to defeat an enemy west of here. Kydo had told the lad that the former king had been power hungry and kept his people living in squalor and under constant threat of death if they voiced their objections. The peasants rejoiced when this suppressive tyrant was slain.
Kydo had risen a strong army since the demise of the former king. He had taken control over the territory that this dictator once dominated and nearly destroyed through indifference towards the peasants that struggled so hard to survive each day. These lands ran from the mountains in the west, to the ocean far on the eastern shores. The provinces were constantly under attack by nearby warlords yearning to claim these far, reaching lands as their own. The ongoing battles had been fought for years on end.
Liam knew these land-hungry mongrels fought for naught. Kydo’s warriors were well practiced in the art of combat and would give their lives to protect their monarch's property. The youth often daydreamed of running away and joining in these battles. He knew he would make a good soldier. He longed to lead an army into combat and vanquish his enemies. Better that than to be stuck at the castle studying the ancient, mystical book day in and day out. What good were incantations against one’s foes? How could a spell defeat an enemy? How could conjuring determine Liam’s strength and leading abilities? Such powers were a thing of the past. Sorcery would not gain him a reputation of valor. Such incantations could not give him fame and glory. Why was he wasting all this precious time?
The youth recalled when he'd mentioned that fact to Kydo once. He had received a sharp wallop on the back of his head for the remark. Liam could still hear his Kydo’s harsh words. He had screamed, “You young fool! You think your skill with a broadsword is enough to keep you alive? Good as you thin you are at the art of swordsmanship, you will never be able to defeat your adversaries by that skill alone. Soldiers die in battle. No matter how many or strong your forces are battles can still be lost. Everything you’ve fought so hard for will be taken from you. Look at what happened to King Nicolas. His knights were well trained, yet his fortress was destroyed and he was killed. If it weren’t for me these lands would have been taken and divided up by foreigners years ago. Do you want that for your future? No my son. You cannot depend on warring ways to keep possession of your kingdom. You must be stronger than that. You must make your enemy fear for his life and even for his own children’s lives. Only through magic shall you keep complete command over your adversaries - and yes - even your own people. Only through incantations will you be able to completely dominate your enemies and keep possession of all you own. Only through my tutelage will you learn all that must be done to fulfill your destiny.”
Kydo had demanded that Liam stay in his room for the remainder of the week with strict orders to study the ancient book. Kydo expected him to learn five incantations during that time. Liam did as told. By the end of the week he’d learned twice that amount and gained his father’s praise for perfecting the spells that he’d performed for his master with pride. This punishment had not diminished Liam’s dreams of valor, but the lad kept his daydreams to himself from then on and never mentioned leading an army to his father again.
The bushes suddenly rustled just ahead of Liam jolting him from his reverie. Perfection pranced about hoping to be set at a gallop. The wild steed still yearned for the freedom of racing uninhibited with the wind. Liam had to tighten his hold on the reins least they slip from his hands.
Liam settled his horse and dismounted. He drew his longbow from his shoulder positioning an arrow. The lad went to his knees and aimed towards the foliage waiting for his prey to come into view. There. Just ahead. The bushes rustled again and a stag ran from the tangled underbrush. Liam let go his arrow. It flew through the air and pierced the animal’s chest. The creature staggered and then fell dead to the ground. The castle would have fresh victuals on the morrow.
Liam stood and returned the bow to his shoulder. Perfection started to snort wildly. Something was about to make his steed act so nervous. He walked over and grabbed the reins. The stallion tried to rear. “What is wrong my good friend? Is someone afoot?” Liam stood still and listened. He heard no sound. Perfection was well used to the smell of blood so the lad knew that was not what agitated him. What did his senses pick up that Liam could not? “Come back when I whistle for you my friend,” Liam told his mount then slapped him on the rear. The horse quickly sprinted away.
Liam got to his knees and hid behind the foliage. He waited silently arming himself as he did. Within a few moments he heard a voice in the thickets. The brush moved nearby and Liam saw a man and child break through. He rose to a standing position and pointed his broadsword at them. “Halt. Who goes there?” he asked sharply.
The pair gasped and immediately halted their steps. The man looked stunned to see someone of status standing before him. “Pardon us young sir. We are mere peasants only hunting our dinner,” the man said.
“You’re trespassing on private property. Do you not know to whom these woods belong?”
“I, er---, these lands belonged to King Nicolas once upon a time,” the man stammered.
“They belong to Kydo the Sorcerer now. This forest and beyond its borders. Commoners are not allowed to hunt here,” Liam replied.
“We have heard that sir. It is just that we grow leaner by the day. We have to find food to nourish not only ourselves, but our village as well. We’ve been tracking that stag for over five hours. A good runner he is.”
“Not anymore,” Liam pointed towards the corpse.
“Oh my. Do you claim his carcass as your own?”
“Yes. It’s my kill.”
“Surely you would not deprive my son of food. Your pantries must be fully stocked. I am sure you can spare this one animal. It would be a feast for my village.”
Liam looked at the pair suspiciously. Hungry? What did he mean? How could any one be hungry when Kydo made sure every peasant was content with their lot in life? The man was obviously lying. He was just a thief prowling these woods for easy prey. “I should arrest you and have you hanged for hunting in Kydo’s forest. You are a poacher and no more.” Liam retorted angrily. He looked at the peasant’s son and saw true fear in him. What was he afraid of? “Be gone with thee. Get out of these woods. I warn you; go quickly before I change my mind and arrest you in Kydo’s name.”
The pair quickly paid heed to Liam’s threat and sped into the underbrush. The boy suddenly stopped before he ducked into the greenery. He turned and looked Liam square in the eyes and spat at his feet. “Curse you and Kydo too,” he yelled before following his father into the dense foliage.
Liam heard them rushing from the site. His ire rose at the disrespectful comment the boy had vented against both him and his father. How dare he curse him after allowing them their freedom? They’d broken the law and should expect punishment. He had allowed the peasants to flee when by all rights they should be swinging at the end of a rope by rise of the sun on the morrow. Why would the lad curse Kydo? Liam’s father was a fair ruler over the land. He allowed all the right to hunt every forest save this one. After all, a good monarch had to supply his own servants with food, did he not? There were many mouths that had to be filled each night. That was the sole reason these woods had been forbidden the peasants.
Liam angrily thought he should hunt the pair down, but if he did the stag would go to the beasts and be wasted. He didn’t want to go back empty handed. Best to gut and bleed the animal. The pair would soon be far from this area anyway. No use in following them, but from this point onward Liam vowed that he would keep a sharp eye out for poachers.
- A Night Under the Stars -
Liam quelled his anger and called for Perfection. The horse immediately returned to his master. The youth petted his nose and whispered soothing words in his ears. His steed was soon back to his normal self.
Liam led the stallion through the brush to the felled stag. He reached into his saddlebag for the length of rope brought along for the purpose of bleeding prey. He tied one end to Perfection’s saddle horn and threw the rope over a sturdy branch, He then tied the other end to the stag. He eased Perfection backwards and soon the deer was hanging a good distance from the ground. He then secured the rope to a bole of the tree releasing his steed.
The youth unsheathed his knife and cut down the length of the stag. Blood spurted from the wound and spattered Liam in the face. He ignored this and continued with his chore. When done he filled a rag with the entrails from the creature. The hounds would be most grateful for this treat. He then grabbed the water sack and washed as best as he could.
Liam then started to clear a small area for his encampment. He moved far from the corpse not wanting to be annoyed by insects that would feast on the carcass during the night. He knew Perfection would awaken him if larger predators came near. The youth used his broadsword and slashed at the underbrush pretending it was enemy soldiers he swung at while clearing a small area. When he made a space wide enough he spread his bedroll down. The sun would set soon and Liam didn’t want to wait until dark to complete this task. He then took some oats from another bag and fed Perfection, not forgetting to give his steed a hearty drink of water. He gathered wood and lit a fire making sure to keep it from spreading into the surrounding shrubs. He’d surely receive Kydo’s outrage for setting the forest afire.
After seeing to Perfection’s needs, Liam laid down on his bedroll and took out some hardtack. He nibbled on the dried meat as the sun’s light faded and darkness took hold of the night. It was soon black as pitch. The lad listened to the sounds of the forest and heard many screeches as larger animials hunted the weak and fed upon them. He looked through the canopy above and saw stars twinkling amid the dense leaves. He wondered of faraway lands and wondrous deeds as weariness approached. Liam closed his eyes and sleep soon grabbed hold of his conscious mind.
Liam held on to his captive as she struggled against him. She screamed and spit in his face, but the lad just smiled as filth issued from her mouth. That seemed to add to her anger. She fought him with renewed strength. Liam had to hold tight least this vixen escape his tight clutch.
In the young girl’s vain attempt to flee the hood fell from her head and revealed her face. Liam noted that she was not only beautiful, but that her hair was as red as the flames that surrounded them. The intensity of those flames reflected wildly in her eyes. She cursed him and tried to claw at his face. Liam laughed at her tenacity. What a wild creature she was. Her clothing stank and her body was covered in ash, but she still persisted in fighting him. A real spitfire she was.
“Unhand me you ugly brute.”
Liam opened his eyes wide in mirth. “What will you do to me if I do not little one?”
“I’ll rip your heart out.”
Liam laughed loudly in response. “You? A mere child? And how do you propose to do that dear one?”
“I am not your dear one you vile beast. Or should I say boy? You are not much older than I.”
“Old enough to take this castle from one who opposed my father.”
The young girl suddenly stopped struggling. She slumped her shoulders in defeat. “Yes. You have conquered my father’s knights, but you will never vanquish me.” she spat out viciously.
Liam was surprised to learn this girl was a princess. “But I have dear one. Are you not within my grasp? Do I not hold you a captive?”
“Yes you do, but I will never surrender unlike those worthless cowards. I shall find a way to escape and seek vengeance for all you’ve done this day.”
“I’m sure you will,” Liam responded.
The young girl bowed her head and tears fell from her eyes, but said no more as Liam led her away.
Liam woke. It was no surprise that he felt his manhood at full length. The intensity in which this girl had struggled against him had aroused him greatly. This wild creature was completely stunning. How could one so young hold so much strength and resolve? Why was he envisioning someone he’d never met? Could she be real? Was she just a figure from his sexual yearnings; or was he seeing some event from the future? Was this a premonition? He’d have to ask Kydo about such matters. Could one really foresee one’s own destiny? A most curious query indeed, the youth thought.
If you didn't read the message I left in the forum, (please check there and read - Sorcerer is being published)
This novel is going to be published as an ebook by a small company and due to the contract - I had to pull this story from BookRix, but left the first few chapters as a teaser. For those who haven't read my story yet, I hope you'll buy it once listed on amazon.com. You'll be able to get to page by using the following linc: http://bit.ly/96tut0
Again, thanks to all who've read and given stars for this story. I appreciate your support.
Texte: This story is an original creation and is owned by the author.
Tag der Veröffentlichung: 08.10.2009
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I dedicate this book to Hayden Christensen without who's inspiration I would've never laid pen to paper.