Chapter 1

The cold rain beat down hard and fast upon the ground, the strong winds rustled threateningly through the treetops high above the ground, the air was damp with a biting cold, a silvery white mist hung just above ground level in thin clouds that curled upward from the ground rising up like a delicate smoke from fire. The forest held a dark, eerie and yet somehow majestic sense about it, as the forest was bathed in the pale silver of the moonlight as it broke through the cloud overhead only for a moment then it slid behind another cloud. In one instant it would be lit brightly only for a moment, as a fork of lightening would split the thick cloudy sky overhead before plummeting the forest back into the relative darkness of the moonlight.
From the edge of the forest the lands broke into a long flat plain, a long narrow dirt track cut it’s way through the centre and curved up toward a large lake that could be seen a little off to the left, the pale silver moonlight reflected from its icy surface, as the silvery crest of the waves could be seen braking rapidly upon the shores. Over the centre of the lake ran a wooden bridge, which arched gently up over the lake and led to the opposite bank before the land vanished back into the darkness of the forest. The waves crashed against the bridge angrily, splashing up over the planks that formed the bridge and draining back into the cold black of the lake. Further on the horizon a menacing shadow loomed high up into the darkened sky the shadow was flanked by the shadows of the huge mountains in the background. This is the location known as Elvera Castle the twin towers rising high into the darkened sky. The castle would be lit for a moment against the backdrop of the forest as the lightening forks continued in the skies over head. On the other side of the castle walls was the town of Elvera the biggest settlement of the Everlands.
As another heavy fork of lightening split the skies a dark shadowed figure could be seen as it emerged from the edge of the forest, its tall form moving silently yet swiftly towards the castle, the figure seemed not to rush to avoid the heavy rain as it came down in ice cold sheets, but quickly enough to make headway along the track with relative ease, a cloak could be made out to billow around the figure from its movement. The figures pace was now slowed and became almost deliberate, as the figure passed the lake the icy waters reflected its shadowy figure upon the volatile surface. The figure had paused a moment as it had reached the lake, its cloaks movement flowing to a gentle halt and falling around its ankles, moved only by the winds that tore through the valley. Sharply it glanced back in the direction it had come before drawing its cloak up around itself and continuing more swiftly towards the castle.
As it neared the castle entranceway the torches in the archways flickered to life throwing a bright amber light onto the figure finally showing his tall male form, he had long dark hair, which had now been soaked and become matted to his head and shoulders from the constant rainfall, as water ran freely from the tips of his hair and down along his cloak, his face was sharp and well defined. Yet he somehow he seemed to be no more than the age of twenty or so, his eyes would tell many a tale of a proud warrior, he seemed so young to have experienced such things. His eyes glowed in brilliant shade of emerald green. Under his cloak upon his belt hung a silver crossbow; this was only visible as the light from the torches reflected from its well-crafted form. Upon his back was sheathed a long sword the hilt encrusted with jewels of brilliant colours.
Slowly and with a great effort he pushed upon the huge oaken doors, on the first attempt they didn’t move just creaked from the pressure he’d placed his palms flat upon them, then with one fluid motion he pushed firmly and slowly they began to creak open, as they opened fully into the courtyard beyond, they clattered hard to a halt, the sound echoing from the high stone walls on either side. Intense amber light now bathed him as the light of the bustling town spilled out through the open doors. Slowly he entered taking a long slow look across the town that now befell him. He moved in slowly and with a sense of extreme caution, as two guards began to close the doors behind him. Villagers stopped and stared at the figure that stood before them, slowly he continued forward along the cobbled street making for the castle, which stood behind the town. Every now and again a villager would pause and look as he passed by them before engaging in hurried conversation with the closest townsperson they found, though from a distance the conversations were unheard and yet seemed to be of an obvious excitement.
As he arrived at the castle he made one short motion and threw open the heavy doors with practised ease, they clattered and slammed to a halt, echoing down the empty stone hallway, then quietly he stepped into the long stone hallway only the sounds of his footsteps echoing through the hall could be heard, pillars ran from an upper balcony to the floor and spaced every ten or so feet apart. At the opposite end the hall broke out into a large circular room, along the centre ran a long wooden table, seats ran along either side and at the head stood a large oak chair much bigger than the rest. On the right was a large fire place which glowed with dulled coals, surrounding it in a makeshift arch were chairs and couches made of what appeared to be leather. As he stood motionless water ran from his hair and cloak, slowly creating a pool of water upon the grey marble floor. Finally he took a step forward as he moved further into the hallway, his footsteps continuing to echo off the walls. Suddenly the air was cut by a female voice, one of a clear cut excitement and joy.
“Kane!!” the voice cried out
He turned in time to see a young female enter between two pills and move hurriedly towards him; she looked to be around the age of 16, she had long flowing blonde hair, her hair fashioned in long flowing curls, which bounced about her shoulders as she moved closer to him. She wore a black satin dress; slits ran up either side from ankle to thigh, allowing the dress to flow out gently.
As she got to him, she paused in front of him a moment before wrapping her arms around him tightly, jumping up as her legs wrapped around his waist she held him tightly, gently he wrapped his arms around her waist and held her in an intimate hug only for a moment, before prising her arms and legs from around him and looked softly into her eyes, her eyes shone now with the tears that threatened to fall, a wave of emotion held back, his smile was gentle yet somehow firm, as her feet touched back upon the ground. Her eyes seemed so full of emotion and a deep knowing as she stood and simply stared up at his face, finally she stepped back and simply stood her gaze not breaking from his eyes.
“What’s wrong with everyone?” He asked
“We thought you were …” She paused as if about to say something, though the remainder of her sentence was all too clear to those who would have been listening.
“Dead?” He chuckled in a dry and sharpened tone
“The messenger, he was quite sincere in his belief Kane” She bit back softly
He chuckled softly before answering her “Ascondia I was forced to fake my death, I was cornered by Molvar in the forest a while ago. Luckily for me his aim is beyond terrible, so I just had to make it look good with a fireball or two, the effect caught me left me laying in a bad way, after he’d left I made my way to a village on the eastern outskirts of the forest, they cared for me there until I was well enough to return home, I had hoped that no one else saw me in such a mess, didn’t anticipate they would have, to be honest I thought we were alone in that forest. But then we can’t have everything our own way now can we” Replied Kane an air of playfulness in his voice
“Indeed!” Growled Ascondia “Do you have any idea as to what I’ve been through Kane?! Do know how difficult it was announcing your death to the people of the village?”
Kane paused and looked down at her, she stepped toward him just as she did so he stepped back and out of her reach and then headed up the corridor breaking off between the pillars and heading up the stone steps that led into one of the towers.
Ascondia looked after him her eyes full of joy, pain and a gentle air of confusion; she moved her hair from her eyes and let it fall gently upon her shoulders.
“I hate it when he avoids my questions like that, still there goes one of the most loyal men anyone could ever hope to know,” she said to no one but herself “if only any of us could understand his true path”
The heavy wooden door slammed shut heavily behind Kane, as he entered his chambers, along the wall to his left was a banner upon which was a coat of arms, a long golden dragon spiralled around a silver sword, by this dragon stood a dark figure, a winged demon of sorts. The weird thing one could say about the imagery was the fact that these images seemed to move and dance in and out of the light. Kane’s eyes scanned the room, directly opposite the door was a large stained glass window, In the centre of the room a large black four poster bed, the frame of intricate metal works the curtains a deep black velvet, the duvet a black satin which shimmered softly as the moonlight fell upon it through the window. Nothing had been moved, and he’d been away for quite some time, in the area of months he thought, truth be told time had been a blur with his injuries he had suffered greatly.
Slowly he reached up and over his shoulder then with a slow gentle upward movement drew his blade, which was long, thin and well crafted, as he gently lowered the blade so the tip was held a mere inch from the ground. He walked across the room to a glass case by the bed, and then he laid the blade in the case upon the blood red velvet cushion and closed the glass lid. Slowly he removed his long cloak and placed it on the post at the foot of the bed. Under his cloak he wore a tight sleeveless leather vest and tight leather pants. He unclipped his bow from his hip tossing it down into a large trunk at the foot of his bed; several daggers that rested along his hip closely followed the bow into the trunk.
After a moment of pause he finally lay down upon the bed and placed his arms behind his head lying back on the satin pillows, closing his eyes as his mind became free of the worries and troubles it had carried before hand as he slipped into a light but deserved sleep.
The night had remained cool the lightening forks outside would temporarily light up the darker room, before plunging it back into near darkness, Kane remained asleep not stirring to the night and events outside. Once more the room was silent and dark.

The End

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