The Warrior Within

A young boy destined to be the saviour of this new world. His adventure begins, and along the way, finds what it takes to be a hero, but first, he must realise, that to be a true hero, you need to know, the warrior within.

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2. The Falling Stars

“Move it boy! You ain’t gonna get your chores done at this rate!”

“Aww, c’mon pa! I am tryin’ hard I can!” replied Jedediah. “can’t we call it ‘day? I been working on this all day!”

“No! These buckets don’t fill themselves y’know. Besides, the Creek is only 50 yards away. Think of ya prize boy! Think of the reason, the purpose.” Jedediah’s father’s voice was demanding and rich with authority.  The pair was working in their blacksmith. They worked to create many tools for the small island they lived on. Though, lately with the arrival of the beasts, they have begun their creation of weaponry. Many people lacked the training for even blacksmithing, so they were responsible for all weaponry.

“But Pa!”

“Son! What have I taught you about excuses?” Jed was silent before he answered.

“Excuses show only the weakness of the Warrior within. I know Pa, but this ‘ere work  seems pointless. Our island has never encoun’ered  anythin’ from the outside world.” Jed was just sixteen, still in his youth.

“Son, what you see now, is more than what it appears. Now, hurry up and get me ten more buckets Boy. Get your friend Lerv to help if ya that weak!” and with that Jed’s father resumed his work and the familiar sound of clinging and bashing of metal resumed. Jed picked up his leather bag with the buckets inside and carried the unnecessarily big bag to the creek.

It was evening; the sky was beautiful with its normal red-green taint. The sun was very unlike the human world, for it was the sun that had appeared to look like a sphere of ‘Aura.’ Many have debated whether if it really is or not. But Jed loved watching the sun cower over the small hill to the east. He looked around at the marvellous trees and rocks, a scene that he would never grow tired of. He turned to the west and saw the great ocean of Yarvis. He gazed into the distance, wondering what was happening in the outside world. What it would be like to fight in the great wars that would always rage in the outside world. He himself was not troubled by these new beasts, if anything he were excited by such beasts.

Since Jed was a child he had dreamed of fighting in the army of Man. He was taught the great valour and honour of the soldiers, and the courage of which they had. He was told, that only the ‘great men’ reached the army of Man. This army would come through the land of Strocton, and would sometimes come to the islands looking for ‘great men.’ These men were more than a standard soldier in great army, who were sent to help the islands from the beasts. His father’s words echoed in his head:

“Son! Get those chores done.”

He turned to see that those words were not in his head. He quickly ran to the creek, filled all the buckets with water and with all his strength lifted all the buckets in the bag and carried them to the blacksmith. His father then gave him a part of a roast Moir he had hunted for earlier. Moir are very curious creatures; they are strong critters but very timid. Moir were very vast in number and so were a great food source, for both Mue and Man. As a perk, Moir also tasted very good. They are a bear looking critter, only 2 feet tall however, and was covered with a light coat of fur, which varies in colour depending on which island it was found on.

While they were eating, Jed asked his father about the ‘great men.’

“Pa, what are the ‘great men.’” His voice like one of a young child.

“The ‘great men?” Jed’s father laughed “why son, they are the most revered warriors of Strocton, they are masters of combat and the ‘Aura.’ You should talk to Lery’s parents about them, they know more than me about such men.” His voice was very soft and joyful. He was somewhat amused by the boy’s question. He immediately told Jed that he would take him to Lery’s parents the next day, and bade him a good night and sent him to his quarters.

“Good night son.”

“’Night Pa”

With this Jed’s father headed out of the log hut. The island offered very poor resources, unlike Strocton which was now almost entirely iron and stone. He then travelled up the creek and reached Lery’s hut. There was a rather loud hustle and chatter going on inside. He called out for Lery.

“Lery me’ Boy, come out and open the door for a weary blacksmither.” His voice was thick with childish glee. A joyful sound came from inside, and noisy steps that sounded rushed came from inside. Then, the pleasant sight of the young boy Lery was visible as the door opened.

“Lija!” Lery’s voice was full of excitement.

“Lery! Me boy what are you up to in there?” At this the boy’s joyful expression was wiped away.

“Mother and Father are explaining to me what I have been training for these past few weeks. I have never understood the whole point of them sending me out to slay the nearby Mur.”

Mur were close relatives of the Moir, they are though a much more violent  species. They had instead of paws, vicious claws. They were much fewer in number and had a very thick leathery skin. They were very hard to hunt for and therefore proved to be a great enemy to train with.

“I just don’t know why I would need to slay such beasts? I am only a child, I am not ready to aid the other islands of these beasts, my parents even told me. So why must I slay such beasts?”

Lija knew why Lery had all this training. It was the same reason he is making Jed do all the hard work. He knew that they were both chosen by the ‘Aura.’ He discovered their destinies one night while he was focusing his thoughts on the ‘Aura.’ While he was focusing and gathering his emotions, a sudden flash in the sky had caught his eye. As he looked, he noticed that it was a bunch of stars, these stars had been up in the sky only just recently, the stars began to shine, and from them were two bright green beams on Lery’s hut and Jed’s hut. Lija knew that this was the ‘Aura’ empowering the two youth’s with strength and intelligence. After the beams had faded, the stars fell over the horizon. This was a prophecy mention by the high priest of the Mue’s long ago:

“The stars shall beam on two youths, they shall be our hero and shall be the ones to help us from the Stray. They shall one day defeat the immortal being.” Even Men admired the high priest’s wisdom. But all this was forgotten since the arrival of the new high priest. He has created division in the friendship between Man and Mue. This is now why there are so many wars. Lija did not want his child to go and kill Man, Mue and the Stray alike. But he understood that the Stray had corrupted many Men and Mue and so they must suffer the same fate.

“May I come in Lery?” asked Lija.

“Oh yes, right this way…” Lery had a sound of embarrassment and disappointment to his voice. Lija entered the hut and was welcomed by Lery’s parent’s. They were a happy couple who have had a passionate love for each other since they met, nearly twenty years ago. The husband, Srold, was a big bulky figure with an intimidating beard; his eyes were probably what stood out though. His eyes, if you were to look hard enough, had a fire in them. His eyes gave ferocity in his look which gave either comfort or uneasiness. His clothing was like any other islander. Scruffy clothes made from basic cloth, the richer inhabitants wore leather. Jewellery was very rare; it was considered a sign of great wealth to be wearing any jewellery at all. Srold’s wife, Yawsa, was very attractive. Her slim appearance gave an illusion of a soft nature. She often wore jewellery made of diamonds and gold, a dress of silk and her feet were often covered by her dress. Her hair was blonde, long and straight, her eyes were like that of the ocean, and the blue sparkled in the light. Her face was smooth and perfect, her mouth always smiling, showing her white glistening teeth which would show through her smile. Her voice was as sweet as a nectarine; her words were always few and clear.

“Lery, my dear, it is past your bed time, go rest my young angel.” Her voice was enough to put you to sleep.

“Good night mother” Lery’s reply was slow and sluggish, he was weary from the day.

“Good night son” Srold’s voice was strong as he spoke. Lery strode towards his room and lay in his hammock.

“May I interest you in a drink Lija?” Yawsa’s voice was sincere and lovely.

“Yes Yaw, may I have a cup of Sloc?” Sloc was a delicious sludge like drink, it came from further up the creek, north of the island, about an hour’s walk. It was an expensive drink on the market in the outside world, however, here in the islands it was easily accessible. It is unknown where in the creek the Sloc turns into the sweet water, but they do know that around the north of the creek, there is a spring of Sloc.,

“That shall be fine for this evening. Srold, would you care for some as well my dear?”

“No thank you love, we first have other things to discuss.” Srold’s voice always had some sort of gentleness to it, it was mysterious. Maybe it was his close connection to the “Aura?” No-one knew.

“Ok dear, I shall be back soon.” With that she headed out the back of the hut.

“So I see that you have also felt the calling of the “Aura” in your child too?” Lija was curious and spoke with wisdom in his voice now.

“Yes, but I fear we have one of the called ones missing. We have another youth who is somewhere on this island who has not seen the calling. This is because their calling has not yet come, their time will come very soon however, I believe when the two young youths meet this mysterious youth things shall be more clear. Their calling is different from these two, their calling was not to be their destiny, and their calling was to help the two fulfil their destinies.” Srold was very rarely a serious man such as this, he would usually add in a laugh or sarcastic comment. But this seemed to be troubling. “This youth I fear is being attacked by the minions of the Immortal Being. My estimate is that these two need to find this youth quickly and save them from such attacks.”

“While I do not find such haste necessary for this youth, I shall send my son with yours, however, I will not allow these two until they have mastered what they can about the ‘Aura.’ I am sure you agree on such terms?” Lija was knowledgeable in what was to come and knew what had to be done, but his weakness was he always needed someone else there to support him.

“That too I also fear. I do not think we have much time to teach them too much about the ‘Aura.’ I suggest we teach them the basics, the virtues and ways of the ‘Aura,’ I am afraid there is not much else we can teach in the time we have.

“We haven’t much choice have we? That’ll have to do.”

“Dear, I am afraid we may have to go to the springs for some more Sloc, we are about to run dry of it.” Yawsa had entered the room quite subtlety and startled the two men.

“Ok love, I will go tomorrow to fetch us a bucket or two, should not be a problem in ‘ere parts.” Laughed Srold. He had returned to his original form of speech and his friendly tone could be heard again.

“Be careful though dear; it has been shown to me that some of the beasts have reached this island! Shall you require some assistance? I am willing to follow you dear.” Again, Yawsa voice was very seducing, but the sweet sound was then destroyed by Srold who replied in worry and distress:

“No my love, it is far too dangerous for you out there if there are beasts, I do not want you to get hurt” Srolds voice was more pleading if anything.

“But darling-“

“No Yaw, I don’t want you hurt…” They could have argued for hours like this, however, Lija wasn’t very patient with them and had an idea.

“Srold, why not us and the boys go fetch some Sloc? We could teach them about the “Aura” and test their skills of combat?” Lija’s voice was bright and thick with a silent joy.

“hmmmmm….” Srold thought about the idea for a bit and mumbled to himself about all the possibilities and dangers. Eventually he decided that it was a good idea; “We shall head out at sunrise, pack your gear, I fear we may be gone a while.”

“Must we stay longer than what is needed?”

“Yes, the ‘Aura’ must speak to them while they are outside this comfortable area. They may never grow otherwise.” Srold’s voice was becoming serious again.

“Yes dear, must you go so long?” Yawsa’s voice could make anyone cry if they were to hear how much sadness was in her voice.

“Yes love. We must”

There was a long silence after that; such a type of silence that each one could communicate through the ‘Aura.’ This was to avoid Lery from hearing if he were awake. He was always frustrated by this, he always wondered why his parents always spoke like that to each other after talking about ‘a prophecy.’

They all departed after exchanging thanks and greetings to each other. Yawsa had fallen asleep on Srold’s shoulder, and Srold knew that she was not going to move. So Lija just walked out. He had a feeling that this was the last time they were going to be united like that for a while. An uneasiness had settled upon him as he lay in his hammock. He knew what had to be done. He also knew the sacrifices that he was going to have to make. But he was prepared for anything to save the island, and even more to save the world of Yarvis. The thoughts and fears were beginning to cloud his mind as he fell to a deep slumber.

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