Part 1: The Beginning
It was near mid-day, surrounded by family and friends we walked into the building that would hold the Great Meeting of Kings this term, a ceremony to be held once each season to address anything that was happening within the realm. The meeting’s attendance seemed to follow the seasons as well, more during the Summer and Winter due to the great number of problems and actions needing taken, the King’s needing to discuss more dire situations than Spring or Fall. To say the least, it was one of the most overcast Summer solstice meetings emotionally that I had ever seen in all my 20 years of life.
“Gottfried! Why are you just sitting there, stand up with the rest of the battalion!” Father always seemed to be yelling at someone these days. Though I shouldn’t say father seeing as I’m only an adopted member of the family, after my parents deaths during the war between Shandaller to the East and Conthrat to the South. Our kingdom lies in the West, overlooking the ocean, the most beautiful sights to be seen when the sun begins to set across the crashing waves and the sky darkens to a shade of violet and pink that I never knew existed.
“Bloody fool if you think I’m standing this whole damn meeting.” I heard Gottfried mumble under his breath as he walked to position, all the way across the room and I could still hear him, though there are only a few that I cannot hear but they’re trained in stealth and enchantments. I stood as King Allomancer walked into the hall, a man of great strength and prestige, or so I’ve heard from the mumbling. He must be someone of great prowess or he would not dare step into the hall nearly an hour late, let alone being completely vulnerable and away from his royal guard which from what I can assume is normalcy for him now.
“Allomancer, what begs you away from this meeting of such importance that you would be so late to arrive?” Father’s voice boomed through the empty space as the spectators grew silent.
“If you believe it not truly of great importance, you are more of a fool than your orphan in the corner thinking I don’t feel him moving closer.”
How did he know? I couldn’t have been moving for more than a few moments, none other could have even detected my presence let alone known my desired path. Maybe I should listen to the grumbles in the shadows and keep away from such an odd man. What a bore, these meetings don’t usually have anything to do with me anyways.
The sun shone as I stepped outside, watching the trees around me rustle from the slight breeze running through them; green, more so than I had ever seen them before, how can this possibly be the beginning of a bad year? It will be beautiful I just know it. I scanned the entrance as the subjects walked from the building, waiting across the street because I knew Father would be late as always talking with the fellow kings to discuss what to do about the impending threat of the Skenthroas. Watching mother exit the building, trying to wave down the other children, my brother Jenol and sister Cyndria (adopted brother and sister that is). Walking toward me I could see the smiles on each one of their faces, till I got to Jenol, looking more annoyed than usual as Mother whispered in his ear, arm wrapped around him.
Embracing me in a hug Mother greeted me, she had always been quite fond of me seeing as I was gifted as she was. Her with the incredible ability of sword fighting, i’m sure she could do it now but in her day she could take down a whole battalion and best Father in a duel one on one.
“Mother.” I said wrapping my arms around her, nestling my head right in the pocket between her head and shoulder, stroking my head as she did with all the children. She walked ahead as Father came out, he rarely addressed any of his children when in public ‘The less your enemies know about you, the greater strength you have when battling them” he would always say.
“What would you say they’re chatting about up there that’s got Jenol so up in arms?” snickering at Cyndria as we walked some ways behind them. I could see the slump of Jenol’s shoulders as they walked and sadly both Mother and Father have their strongest mage protect their voices so they choose who they want to hear them and everyone else is deaf otherwise.
“Jenol’s got some girls attention and Father wants to make a marriage deal with the King of Sinders.” Though try as she did, she could never hold back a laugh when she thought something funny, only when she caught the attention of the others did she put her hand over her mouth.
“Just like in the ‘gool ol days’ huh?” Laughing as we raced toward the castle ahead of the others. She always loved keeping up with me, even when she was three years old she would jump on me and tear my hair out of my head till I would wrestle with her.
“I knew I’d beat you!” She always was cocky, but it was good, this way she’ll never willingly let anyone win because she’s so damn competitive.
“Yeah whatever twerp.” I couldn’t help but tease her sometimes, she’s really like a little sister to me, i’d do anything for her. “Why don’t you wait for the others here by the guards and I’ll go inside and check everything out.”
Walking inside I once again see the suits of the ancient guards that used to sit in these same castles, my true grandfather being one of them; 4000 years old, the wisest most incredible King to ever oversee this land and yet nobody knew his last name, so on his banner hang only the name he was given “Vlad.” I see two rows down the last name “Hammond” written across a banner (the name of my Uncle’s family who adopted me), sitting in the front as leader of the battalion of his kingdom. Something else catches my eye, three women or what seem to be women, drawing circles and markings in the dirt in front of the armor. Disturbing seeing as I know almost everyone in the kingdom and not once have I ever seen any of them, they’d stick out like a sore thumb any day of the year. Reaching for my knife in my backpack, I unsheath it and start toward the three of them, one turns toward me after hearing my footsteps on the crunch of the dirt, barreling toward me faster than I thought any human could possibly run. Throwing a punch at her gut to test her reflexes and capabilities I was wildly mistaken to have taken it so easy, with lightning speed she jabbed my wrist with what seemed like a thorn, only looking again to see that it was her razor sharp claws protruding out of her fingers.
“If this is all I’m going to be tested on, why go to class in the first place?” Switching grip so my pointer and middle finger were over the blade with the others gripping the handle, rolling to avoid another jab at my eyes, piercing the skin of her ribcage just enough to keep her from attacking again. Only her eyes moved on me, with anger and hatred now rather than a toying annoyance as before, distracted I didn’t notice the other one in time to block her attack. Ripping at my left shoulder with her claws, now covered in blood, I recoiled and threw my knife into her right thigh, using an enchantment to ground her where she stood. I returned the blow with excessive force, her face colliding with my knee in midair while she tried freeing herself, only then did the last one intervene. Slowly walking toward me and her wounded comrades, a oddly sweet smile across her face as she neared. Taking a closer look at the three of them, they seemed to be of the feline people of Elteross toward the North of here, but what would they possibly have to do here?
“It’s not time to play yet my young pup, your time as a man is nearing its end, and I just can’t wait to play with the wolf.” Almost as if she was serenading me I suddenly unbelievably weary, having to clutch at the ground as I dropped to one knee in front of her, I have to sit and watch her walk off with her dear friends that almost killed me. I can’t help but think ‘this isn’t a training exercise is it?’