In The Beginning…
Everything was created by the Mother and Father. Terra was to be their home and they gave her the Land, sky, and seas. Soon after completion they birthed six children and these children were known as the Ancients. The Ancients in turn created both mortals and the gods known as The Devine Ones. Everything was peaceful before evil took hold of one of Ancients and infected the mortals with such darkness that when they died and their souls went back into Terra to be recycled it rotted the land. Blackness soon covered the land and the Evil rose up to be supreme but the five other siblings joined against their brother combining their strengths to lock him away even creating a prison in which to hold him and his evil kin. This prison is known as The Abyss. All Evil is absorbed into its caverns as the souls die to keep the land of Terra pure. Even The Devine Ones send their fallen there to be kept from influencing the mortals even further then The Dark One had. Watching over the gates are Dark Princes. Men born and bred to be the watchdogs of this hell, their power unmatched inside of the depths but once they tried to leave their power would fade and they would become mortals.
This was the problem that Malak had, he was bored with seeing the blackened walls of The Abyss and watching over the damned. There was no glory, no way to gain more strength, only his region of this prison that was as much his as those he kept within its gates. He had tried to escape to The Land but as soon as his foot stepped out of the gates his power left. Weakness was not a price he was going to pay for this freedom. There had to be away to lock his power and be free of this infernal place. None of the books in the archives had shed any light on the subject either. The only ones who would know would be the Ancients who had disappeared long ago or The Devine Ones who would never help a watch dog off his leash. At first he had tried to bargain with The Fallen Ones, but even banished gods held true to their virtues. He had nearly given up hope when he came was sentence to the Abyss.
The legends of Zodd’s vanity had reached even Malak in the Aybss, the Devine One truly thought that he was better than everyone else even his godkin. He was banished now, fallen from grace, the only reason being that his brethren had become tired of his plait narcissism that they had finally banished him. Perhaps someone like him, who had been forced to Fall against his own will would be willing to trade information for freedom…
Chapter 1: The Fallen and The Shade
Malak glanced at the polished mirror in front of him and smiled. Everything about him was perfect even his silver hair fell perfectly into place. “What a perfect day to do business.” The words were spoken to himself before sweeping out of the room. The destination would be The Nethers, the lowest level in the prison meant for the most sinister of souls. If you were sentenced to The Nethers you were striped of everything and left only a shell of your former self and this is where the Devine Ones sent Zodd. The Fallen was chained with his arms high and his leg chains to short, his once white hair grey with dirt that hang in clumps here and there. The lavender eyes that must have shone bright with pride were now dark and dull. The prisoner made no effort to lift his head as the Dark Prince arrived at his cell door. “Well, well how the mighty have fallen.” Malak teased, a wide grin adorned his face showing the tips of his fang like canines. When no reaction was given The Dark Prince opened the cell gate with nothing but a thought. “Such a shame that your very brothers and sisters do something such as this to you. For no crime at all.” Slow steps forward until Zodd’s vision could now hold Malak’s obsidian boots. It took every effort to not gag from the smell of feces and urine that resonated off The Fallen as he bent at the waist to be on level. A pale hand reaching out to lift his wards chin those dirty lavender eyes meeting instantly with his own quicksilver ones.
“Have you come to rub in my bad luck Dark Prince?” The words that Zodd spoke were rough as if his vocal cords were full of dry sand. Malak took in that face with its dull eyes, cracked dry lips, sunken cheeks. This Fallen must have been very pampered by his subjects to have fallen victim so quickly to the effects of The Abyss. “Do not believe that your attempts to verbally torture me are working. Being in this shit pile of yours is painful enough.”
“I could not agree with you more. I tire of seeing the blackened walls of this shit pile as you call it. I wish for a better view just as badly as you wish to be free of the chains. Just think of having a chance at getting your powers back and being worshipped again.” Malak chuckled revealing more of those sharp canines. “To have women falling into your bed with legs spread, or men if that is what you chose.” He stood again no longer liking being at the same level as this lowly Fallen. This male who would never again be any more worth the manure that occasionally stuck to his boot.
“And what might your point be?” Zodd was half expecting to get cut down. Malak was notorious for absorbing those who irritated him. Of all six of the Dark Princes he was rumored to be the most powerful as he had found a way to absorb souls. Something like that was a threat when you wanted to be recycled or set free at the end of your sentence. Every day you bowed and kissed his boot just to be permanently gone just because he had a bad day. That was probably why his kin had sent him here. Hoping with everything they had that Malak would end him forever.
“The point is that you may have something I want and if you do perhaps we can have an exchange. At the end of this exchange I expect that we both will have a better view.” Malak made a slight movement with his hand and the shackles that bound Zodd opened dropping him onto his face on the filthy floor. “With my very will I can end your captivity and all I want is a very tiny bit of information.” Dirty amethyst eyes met quicksilver as The Fallen came to stand at full height matching every bit of Malak’s to the inch. “As you can see I am not lying. Now if you would be so kind as to tell me the key to my own bounds I will set you free. Open the gates and never once look in your direction as you march out.”
“A key? I know not of a key what I do know of is a sword. According to the codex of Devine history. The Ancient Ones made a sword and that sword if the very life force of The Abyss. It is what ties the Dark Princes together and suck any magics that a person may have. If you find this sword in the heart of the prison and take it with you to the surface then perhaps you may find a view that is much more acceptable to a prince such as yourself.” Malak grinned and simply patted the Fallen as if he were a child before turning and leaving. He would not yet open the cell or the gates to this one. Not until he knew for sure that the sword was his key to freedom. “One more thing Dark One. Don’t be surprised if the sword wants something in return. It is said that it is the shell for strong soul.”
The sun was miserable. A bright sphere in the sky that heated everything its light touched to unimaginable degrees. The sword at his back vibrated in contest, it wanted souls and lusted for the taste of blood. Yes the fabled sword existed in the heart of the Abyss but what that damned Fallen didn’t mention was that the sword could only be wielded by one who cut a deal with it. It would trade souls for Malak’s power to stay with him on the surface, which sounded good until he actually tried to wield this sword and with every swing pain shot threw his arm. If he ever met Zodd the Fallen again, he would make sure to feed his soul to this cursed sword. Another thing that was failed to be mentioned was the fact that the closest exit was in a seemingly endless desert. The heat unbearable to Malak’s pale skin and eyes that were accustomed to the low light of The Abyss. Just when he thought that he would die in this barren land in the distance came a town, running was his first instinct but he knew better, he knew he must pace himself to get there more sooner than later.
Towns on the surface it seemed stood open and welcomed the unknown for he soon marched right through the open gates to be greeted by the sight of a large mob of people, many smells that were both good and bad, and so many sights and the first thing that really grabbed his attention was a large barrel of water next to a whole cart filled with various foods. Ignoring everything else around him he went to the water, cupping his hands he drank until his stomach protested and then he plucked some fresh bread and a green sort of fruit from the cart. The bread was soft and so much better than anything he had ever eaten in the Abyss, the green fruit was tart but juicy and it took no time at all for him to devour both before reaching for another fruit. “I hope that you are planning to pay for that. Free samples is not something I do.” The vender said, he was round and short with dark skin and small beady eyes. When Malak did not stop or answer he grabbed for The Dark Prince’s hand. “HEY!” Malak’s dull grey eyes looked down at the man’s hand on him and then at the man. The last thing that his vender would see was those eyes because it would only take Malak a second to draw his sword and run it through that plump stomach. Blood would bubble at the corners of the dead man’s mouth before Malak would dislodge him with his foot. As the body fell to the ground a woman would scream and that was when everything around him would turn to chaos.
Fuarie called the shadows to her to keep from being seen as she took a seat on top of her favorite roof top. Here she could hear all the voices of the bazaar below and it helped to keep the whispers inside of her at bay. Emerald eyes watched the happenings of the villagers below with only mild interest. Al Syrum held a little of every race as it was the main trade town on the continent of Shadows. Humans had made the town and so slightly outnumbered the races, elves were the next highest in number, a few of the assassin race called Shades lived here but gnomes and dwarves came to sell and then left not one had a stable residence in this smoldering city. Thrions did not take well to the heat and lack of nature but even they found a way to live within these walls. None of these races were of interest to the Shade woman as she watched them carry on their day. The voices inside started to scream, their scattered language confusing to her as they spoke. Delicate hands went to her ears as her eyes closed to try and sort out one voice from another before it went quiet. Jade eyes snapped open in time to see a tall man dressed in armor of obsidian walk into town.
His hair was silver and simmered against the bright light of the sun and his grey eyes were dull and emotionless as he came up to a vender and started to take what he pleased. Slowly she made her way to the edge of the roof top and lay flat on her belly before shimming her upper half off to get a closer look. She would hang so far that her multicolored hair would almost touch him. At sight everyone would know she was a Shade because of her hair. They were born with unusual hair colors, her own was a bright blue around her face while the rest was black and all was tipped with pink. “HEY!” The shout had her drawing herself back up to avoid getting caught in the scuffle she knew would take place below her. Only the fight was much shorter then she would have thought as the stranger cut down the vender without difficulty. Her eyes were drawn the sword that was his weapon, the blade practically dripped with evil.
Chaos broke out below as the guards were called to the scene, and screamed orders at the dark man to throw down his weapon and surrender. That handsome pale face light up with a grin that promised more death before he lifted his sword and lounged forward cutting down the closest guardsman. After the initial shock that someone could move so fast with a sword so large the rest of the response team went to strike at the dark one. Fuarie smiled to herself noting how beautiful this man looked as he fought, and he was good, out of the ten to respond he had cut down half before any of their blade’s met his. Still he was able to parry or dodge most blow. After two more fell one of the men were able to score a hit on him, sliding their blade up at an angle into his abdomen under his chest plate. The dark one stood for a moment as if in shock before he would slice down his attacker. A cry from down the alley announced the arrival of more guardsmen.
Biting down on her bottom lip Fuarie made the split decision to save this man adorned in obsidian. Reaching back into her pocket she threw down a hand full of smoke bombs. Jumping down she would land in front of the man. “Come with me quickly.” She whispered and turned to meet the gaze of one of the guards. With a smile she pulled at her mithril string before strifing to the right. Her hands moving in a dance that would encircle the man’s left arm with her string. Once the maneuver was finished she would tug hard, the arm being sliced clean off the man’s body. He would go to grab his wound allowing Fuarie to slip by while pulling the dark man with her.
Once they made it into a back alleyway she would cloak them in shadows to help say undetected as she lead him through a maze to reach a large creak in the wall. It was large enough for her to walk right through and he would be able to make it if he crouched down. She would slip by and motion for him to follow. The wound he had slowed him and he could barely make it to join her before he would fall forward. Blood loss causing him to faint.
Pain was something that Malak had forgotten about, it had been decades since he had felt even a nick from his shaving razor. As the blade slide from his flesh he would reach down and touch the wound, pulling his hand back to see it covered in the deep red liquid that was his blood. Suddenly his world was a daze, everything around him blurred. Maybe this journey of his was already over, over before it had begun. What a shame he would have so loved to rule this world on top of the Land. Smoke surrounded him in what he imagined was what was going to carry him back to the Abyss but this time to serve as its prisoner instead of keeper, and that was when she appeared. The young woman with curves that caught his eyes even when he flirted with death. Her hair was strange and her eyes a piercing olive color. “Come with me quickly.” Her perfect lips whispered. His grey eyes watched as she took off a man’s arm with what looked like simple movements of her hands and then she tugged him along for many twists and turns before finally making it to an escape route.
Her perfect slender body slipped through easily to safety and then she motioned for him. Slowly he would make his painful way to the hole in the wall. Bending to fit caused a huge shockwave up his spine. He could make it through but the darkness still claimed him. His last thought being that he was glad the last thing he was to see was a beautiful woman with strange hair and green eyes.
It was already night by the time his eyes were to open again. A fire was started nearby and the cavern he was kept in was well light by candles and torches. Every muscle in his body protested as he tried to push himself into a sitting position, which failed. A deep breath was taken to try and focus himself. Around him he could see his armor and that cursed sword on the wall directly to his left. At his feet he could see the entrance that was covered by what appeared to be shrubbery, above him he could see the sky that was now black blue with white specks that were what he assumed to be the stars he had read about in books. Splashing to his right brought his attention to the small pool of water and the figure within it. The woman who had saved him was waist deep inside of the clear water, her hair slick as if she had dipped it into the pond. She was without clothes, leaving her perfect skin to be a feast for his eyes. ‘Turn around. Turn around.’ His mind repeated as if him simply thinking it would make this strange woman turn so he could see if her breasts were just as perfect bare as they were clothed.
Finally her head turned and her emerald eyes met his, they widened as she rushed to the edge of the pool and threw on clothing that was robe like. All this without giving him a glimpse of the front half of her. Slowly the young woman made her way to him, still dripping the whole way. Bending down to be almost level with him she stared into his eyes for a good long moment before jerking back up into a standing position. “Who are…” He started to say but she had started to pace then. Back and forth, back and forth, all the while whispering non sense to herself with her hand up her ears, her fingers moving as if they were strumming on her skull. After long moments of this she would stop, those emerald eyes wide in shock.
“Dark Prince.” She said a wide grin gracing her face before the hysterical laughter would bubble up and take control. Her whole body shaking with the musical tone of it, her head tossing back, her hands holding her stomach as if her guts might burst from her body. “You are a Dark Prince, with powers on the land.” She whispered leaning down once more to hover her nose just above his, her wet hair falling around them. “That sword of yours IS evil then. It’s the Abyssal sword of legends! PERFECT! It drives away the voices!”
“You know of the sword?” Malak asked his eyes focusing on her soft lips, he fought the urge to run his hands up into that damp multicolored hair of her’s and pull her down the rest of the way for a kiss. She nodded gently and was gone from him once more as she sat back into a kneeling position.
“Every Guardian knows of the sword.” She said tilting her head to the side as a kitten would. “It is taught to us in the temples. To explain how evil came to be and why we guard the artifacts. I was taught to destroy you, but you make the voices stop so I shall keep you alive.” She paused and her smile widened and she jumped back up to her feet. “And owe me a life debt. I saved you now you must save me…Come.” She motioned for him to follow her as she turned back to the pool. Malak would need a couple of tries before he could get up and on his feet steady enough to not stumble and fall into the nearby fire. The pain in his side causing his teeth to clamp down hard and stay clenched as he moved to stand next to the girl. “Go on get in.” She whispered pointing to the pool in which she had come out of.
“Am I supposed to trust you? How do I know that this water does not contain something in which to cause me death?” He was weaponless and could only guess that she was but that was no reason to take any unnecessary risks. He was already weakened from his wounds so if she were to attack there was a fair chance that she would be able to land every hit. Emerald eyes rolled as she disrobed herself, allowing him to see that those breasts were not only just as perfect bare as they were in clothes but even better. It must have been a while since he last had a female because his body was responding to her in strange ways even now his cock already threatened to stand out from between his legs and greet her. He watched as she slipped into the water, took some into her cupped hands and drank it.
“You see there is no death here, please come in.” She spoke and moved back a few more steps to give him room to enter. He had expected the water to be uncomfortably cold but as he stepped into its crystal clear surface the temperature was perfect. The level of the water was only to just above his mid-thigh and felt fantastic on his previously over heated skin. “Sit.” The girl urged and without thinking he obeyed. As soon as the dagger wound on his side hit the water his pain vanished causing him to release a moan of enjoyment. “The water comes somewhere from underground as a run off of the springs nearby that alchemists use to make their potions and ethers.” Moving slowly she slipped her slender body up and behind him. He could lean back and rest his head back against those perfect breasts but before he could carry out this urge she would start working a strange paste into his hair. It smelled of sweet fruit and was dark in color.
“What are you doing to me?” He asked lazily, in truth he didn’t care as it felt good to once again be pampered by a fully naked woman. Even if this one was not under his command, the picture of a collar around her slender neck and a chain that he held hanging between her breasts came into his mind. It was a quick decision that he would like to see that one day, if he could break her, though he suspected that she was already broken as she spoke of voices.
“The guards in town will be looking for a huem male with gray eyes and hair. I am simply turning you into a Shade with deep blue hair and grey eyes accompanied by me.” It was her answer to the question that he forgot that he asked. For someone who might be broken she was also clever, he would no longer be wounded, no longer look as himself, and wouldn’t be alone. He could walk right into that town and no one would ever suspect that he was the one to cause the disorder at the city’s gates.
“What is your name female?” It was more of a demand then a question but she didn’t seem to see it that way. She just kept working that wonderful paste into his hair with unaltered focus. “I would like to call you something other than female. Tell me your name.” Again there was no answer and his temper started to flare. He wanted to reach up and put a hand on that slender neck and choke the life out of her for defying him and as his hand did raise up she did answer but seemed to not notice the hand that wanted to enclose around her airway.
“Fuarie…..Fuarie Ai.” Was her answer and it was given in a low voice as she stayed focused on her task at hand. The hand that had been ready to drain her life slowly went back to his side as her name rolled around in his mind. Even though Shades spoke in common tongue their dialect was different. The abyss had seen many of her kind in its depths since the race tended to be assassins and thieves, professions that were seen as foul and evil. “You must understand…I must take you to them…the scrolls will teach you…teach you…” Fuarie said so softly that at first Malak had thought she was talking to herself.
The sun was well on its way to setting when Fuarie finally finished her task and set them back to the path to town. The dark one’s hair was now a lovely deep blue color and with a few clothes that she had happened to collect he looked almost completely different. It was so convincing that they slipped right into town without the guards even stopping them once for questioning. The Archives were in the center of town and she was sure that if she could just get him to understand the histories that their task would be clear.
However with disorder that happened earlier the city guards were on high alert, groups of them patrolled what seemed like every street and alleyway. Her nerves were so tight that she felt as though her teeth were going to break into her mouth. She had tucked herself into Malak’s side, her arm around his as if he were courting her, not that she would complain if he were. The Dark One was a fine male with sliver hair and eyes, fit with fine muscles and pale skin. Not to mention that sometimes he looked at her as a tiger would his prey, that intense stare made her want to surrender herself to him, but she could never do that, a broken Shade such as herself would never be worthy of his sex.
Finally they made it to their destination, Fuarie had loved the Archives because if she read the voices would lower to whispers, as if whatever was inside of her head was listening to the fables and histories that she was taking in. The Scroll Keeper greeted them with a nod as they passed. She knew exactly what she was looking for so she didn’t have to ask the elderly man for help. To the back of the dusty building with dozens of shelves full of scrolls organized she pulled a few scrolls from their place and motioned for her companion to sit at one of the tables in the center aisle. He hesitated and gave her murderous look, she wondered why his mood seemed to change in the blink of an eye. When he did sit she unrolled one scroll and pointed to the image. Those stunning grey eyes strain in the low candle light at first before opening wide with astonishment. “The Sword.” He said in a low voice. “This is about the damned cursed sword!”
“Yes! You see…” She unrolled another scroll over the one of the sword. “After creating Terra, The Mother and Father decided to bare children…” As she spoke she made sure that she pointed to pictures and words so that he could follow along, however looking at him she suspected that he was more bored then interested.
“Everyone knows of these histories. Form the shells of the eggs came mortals, each race was birthed by a different dragon’s birth.” He said cutting her off with what seemed like anger, perhaps he thought that her help was nothing but a waste of time. Panic started to creep into her heart because she needed him….she needed him so perhaps she could become unbroken…become normal.
“Yes but what many scrolls miss is that Mal mated with humans and created evil. When the evil mortals died it fed him power. In order to save mortals Mal’s siblings gave pieces of themselves to give Father the power to defeat him, this killed father and his body was buried and became the Abyss…this kept the evil from seeping back into Terra…What drew the evil into the Abyss was the sword that was created of Mal’s own body.” She paused and looked over at him. He was listening now and seemed content with the information she was giving him. Something told her that Scrolls in the Abyss probably left out the parts about the sword…to control the soul of the Dragon Mal was too powerful a weapon to fall into one of Dark Prince’s hand.
“But the sword was not the only item to be crafted. Each race has an artifact that is made from their parent dragon’s body. It is said that these artifact will make a powerful armor…”
Malak stood suddenly and bent over the scrolls infront of him. He no longer heard the words that Fuarie was speaking but he had already pieced together where she was going. If he got these artifacts maybe he could control the sword and break the curse that took a hold of him. In a rush he started to unroll the other scrolls that the Shade girl and brought to him. Each one parchment that he read just confirmed the theory; these artifacts were the key to his absolute freedom. However there was one very big problem, according to the final scroll it was deemed illegal to write the location of these artifacts down, the breaking of this law was punishable by death.
“I must find these artifacts…but how? Where would I even start?” He was speaking to himself and had in fact forgotten that Fuarie had been next to him so when she went to speak it startled him. Grabbing onto her shoulder he shoved the Shade down into the table with a loud thud. His free hand had automatically gone to her neck and by the time he remembered who she was her face was already turning colors. Slowly his grip released and she laid there breathing hard. To his surprise those deep emerald eyes did not look up at him in fear, it was indifference. As if she did not care whether she lived or died and that fearlessness was speaking to his body.
As he was getting lost into his own lustful thoughts of mounting her on the table she spoke. “I know where an artifact is…” She whispered, those eyes looking up at him became hard with purpose. “I was bred to be its keeper but when I was discovered to be broken I was discarded.” The Devine Ones must have been smiling upon him, the one person that he needed happened to be in this town, happened to be willing to help him regardless of knowing his evil birthing. His hand smoothed down her slender neck in a caress as he spoke to her in a seductive purr.
“And will you take me to this artifact?” He asked gently, leaning down close enough to feel her breath on his lips. Breath caught in her lungs for a moment, that perfect small body of her’s tensing up for many breaths worth of time before she answered.
“Yes. I will take you to it…I would help you find them all…perhaps they are the key to both of our curses…” God he wanted to take her, leaning in he went to touch their lips together but she turned away from him. How dare she deny him something that he wanted! Anger welled up inside of him once more and he slammed his fist onto the table next to her head. Once again she showed no fear. Truly this female was not scared of death…in fact it almost seemed as if she welcomed it.
On his back the sword hummed with power, trying to feed his anger and murderous intent. Perhaps the soul inside of the weapon was no longer slumbering. Perhaps that soul encouraged him to slay his key to breaking the curse. It took every bit of control he had to pull away from the girl. After he had taken few stumbling steps back the sword stopped its humming but the strain had left him with blood dripping from his nose.
When Malak stepped back Fuarie quickly moved to crouch on the top of the table. For a moment there she could have sworn she heard another voice enter her head. It was only a whisper but still the evil vileness of it made it stand out. ‘I need blood, I must taste blood.’ Is what it was repeated the whole time that Malak had held her to the table. She had never had a new voice so this whisper had her both frightened and curious. Perhaps it was death coming for her and when the Dark Prince had backed away so had death. Perhaps meeting the wielder of the Abyss Sword had her psyche breaking further. Her mind could very well be fracturing further.
The other voices were currently screaming. Their language she couldn't understand. Maybe they were warning her against this journey. In truth she knew that Malak might at any moment turn on her and take the life from her body. She didn't fear death. In fact she would welcome it as it would mean that she could finally be at peace.