The Arukai

 

They had not known anything had happened in Velar until the last remaining humans took residence in their subterranean world.  The world that was solely theirs for thousands of years, beneath the earth.

The Arukai were a shadowy people, they found it easy to conceal themselves from the humans, often listening in on the panicked conversations of the people from above and learned of the chaos and destruction the Nightmares had brought.  

Albino skinned, they had evolved with pupils that almost filled their eyes, to help them see in the dark.  They wore robes made from a rough fabric, like potato sackcloth.  They were governed by ancient lore and the arrival of the humans had caused a great stir in their peaceful habitat.  There was a prophecy, as old as the world itself, that told of a time when the people from above would live amongst the people of below and chaos would rule.

There had been much debate what was to be done, but the oldest and wisest of the elders had declared there would be one who knew the secret of how to end the reign of the Nightmares.

'Let the humans deal with it’ some argued 'It is their problem - the Arukai do not being trouble upon themselves.'

But others feared a time where the Nightmares would tear at the manhole covers, and find the caverns, flushing into the underground bringing havoc and destruction.  Some foresaw doomsday, the Nightmares would twist their way underground and wipeout all other creatures.  Some whispered words of dissent, calls for action.

Old rituals were resurrected and all the scholars and sages were employed in reading ancient texts and artefacts to find the key to survival but relentless failure met them in every page and on every stone tablet.

Their skin had long since lost the resilience to go out in the sun but this small group of humans, huddled around a fire, talked about Twighlight and Deep Night.  The younger and bolder Arukai began to speculate that in the absence of daylight, they might be able to walk on the surface.

Growing opinion was that one of the Arukai should be nominated to speak with the humans.

 

The End

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