Fiction #5: The Sword-Breaker
The tragic tale of an unknown pacifist knight from the Bridgeland of Rowne, whose gauntlets, imbued with the power to break swords and shields, became an ironic rallying war-cry for his own countrymen as they battled the horde of the Sunthari. Unknown to his countrymen, the Sword-Breaker had a terrible and hidden past, despite harboring a hopeful wish for a peaceful future.
RYWEN's CROWN, Rowne (17 Aeyr, Tae 2033), The Bridgelands of Iorensia
On his tenth birthday, Kyp, a Rownean farm-boy with freckles, ginger-colored hair and a smile too big for his face, made a wish.
Word had filtered through that a new hero, dubbed the Sword-Breaker, had lifted the siege of Djinna in the desert land of Sunthar, using nothing more than his gauntlets and magic. The story was he single-handedly clambered up the city walls and broke a thousand Sunthari spears, before forcing the warlord into surrendering, sparing the lives of Rownean prisoners he had held hostage. When Bridgelanders in Rowne heard of what he did, many rejoiced, giving praise to the Paladin Gods, believing a new Rownean champion was born.
When he heard the Sword-Breaker would be riding through his village on his way home, Kyp knew he was about to meet his hero.
Fiction #4: The Tower of Haeol
The story focuses on a civil war in the territory of Nekrabal, as two factions - one devoted to Bershaevol, Goddess of Deception, and the other to Haekrabal, Many-Armed God of Perfection - fight to secure the Tower of Haeol in the middle of the Anghar river of lava; only to discover a centuries-old secret locked within the tower itself. What secret is it? Will it liberate the factions and end the civil war? Or will it spur the deaths of many more in the names of their lost gods?
AKRABAL GORGE, Nekrabal (10 Augury, Tae 2484), The Territories of Zargandar
"Move!" Against the torrent of ash-clouds and geysers marring their field of vision, General Keshande ordered his lieutenants and twenty thousand armed Khaveran warriors to charge down the southern wall of stone-hewn cliff-side steps of the Akrabal Gorge.
It was midday but with the ever-present rain of ash and dust, the sun was lost in the darkness and it might as well had been night. Strong-muscled, teal-eyed and pointy-eared, his long braided hair caked in the blue-green paint of sheepskin leather known as the Embe, and his ebony-black skin already coated with layers of powdery volcanic dust, Keshande knew they had to reach and reinforce the tower before Uruth and his Aksuri army emerged from the north side of the gorge.
The story about a ship captain, his crew and his ship as he is chosen by his country's mysterious king - a wraith-lord - to sail out into sea and prove his worthiness - not just as a captain of his ship, but as the potential successor to rule his country.
ULSETH, Nethulsis (Silence Day, 31 Sellestine, Tae 4053), The Ice Kingdoms of Serpentriss
They huddled around their tables, watching in silence as the ale in their wooden mugs grew stale and bitter. There were a dozen of them - burly men and skinny boys, one woman, a Nolrim dwarf, an Akwipi (a Hawk-man or Primoerial-Hawk as some might call 'em in the southern lands) and an elf from one of those forgettable pirate islands in Morassin. They were seated in batches of twos and threes, some drinking their ales, others rolling bone-shaven dice, listening to the howl and hiss of the blizzard outside the inn.
The story about two lovers - one a chieftain's son and another the village huntress - as they seek to find redemption in a world devoid of morality and dignity. Will the son convince his people of her innocence or will she take matters into her own hands?
ISHANTI, Xissan (15 Urmon, Tae 2985), The Principalities of Aramyss
Eoyan licked the edges of her feathered arrow and gently drew it to her heavily-carved bow.
She flicked her bone-braided pony-tail aside as she tiptoed across the soggy earth, underneath the soothing whistle of tall, heavy bamboo trees. Against the foreboding chill of a trailing mist seeping into her multi-ringed ears and flared-up nostrils, she crouched lower as she released a trail of vapor into the air, waiting for the thump of her heartbeat to match the patter of the earth. She wasn't wearing any shoes; she had decided to abandon them when she left Ishanti village, and as she curled her toes ever slightly against wet leaves and grass, she knew it was the right choice as she sensed imminent danger ahead.
The story of father and son wizards, trapped in their wizardry citadel, as an army of walker machines invented by the dwarves sought to lay siege and steal their resources. Can they stop the invasion or leave their citadel despite the Council's call for the ultimate sacrifice?
QUEYUEDA, Queyan (34 Aeyr, Tae 3500), The Realms of Fawyrn
Narrow stone steps spiraled around the walls of a deep funnel. Robed men carrying spell books stumbled in panic as BOOM! -- an explosion outside rattled sand and dust onto them and into the abyss down below.
Two of the men, Tyracuse, a forty-year-old heavyset man with a black beard, and Septimus, his seventeen-year-old freckle-nosed son, moved past the rest as they hurried up towards a ledge at the highest level. Sunlight streamed through the archway and the noise of chaos was the loudest there. Tyracuse and Septimus were panting and supporting each other as they clambered up, their voluminous spell books clutched tightly under their arms.
Just as they reached the ledge, another BOOM! rattled the walls of the funnel, sending Septimus' left foot slipping over the edge of the stairs. Luckily, Tyracuse had foreseen it and grabbed his son's robes just in time to pull him back.
"Be careful Septimus!" Tyracuse warned, just as Septimus clung to his father's arm for safety.
"They have finally come father," Septimus said.
About the World
This section highlights the world of Mortalissar in greater detail, especially her territories, countries, races, magic, calendar and belief systems. Occasionally, I will write short fiction stories relevant to a particular realm to define its unique characteristics set against a larger canvas. Hopefully, over time, the collection gives you, the reader, a greater appreciation of the uniqueness of this world, and her many qualities and flaws.