"Hail Marouk. It is rare to see you away from the Weld Camp." Lady Thalia said in greeting.
Turning around, I saw that Marouk standing in front, looking at a old stone tablet. "Yes, but it is important. Marouk explained. "I think I understand what has been happening, why the cities are being targeted. And why Evidias has buried herself in a hole in the ground, refusing to come out." he told us.
I saw Lady Thalia nod then frown at the mention of Evidias. "That could be good news."
Marouk began his report. "It is only a story but... somehow it eerily fits the recent events. "An old tale about a darkness that slept beneath the ground from where we came. And a light that shined when there was no sunlight, when there was only the darkness of the mottled sky.
It tells of the "broken ones" that roamed beneath the mottled sky. The ones that devoured and destroyed everything they reached.
It was a more chaotic time, there was no peace, only different things struggling to survive. Sighing he paused, "All I could find are mostly only paintings, but they tell the story clearly enough."
Shivering, I shifted trying to find a comfortable story. I could tell this would be a long but interesting tale.
"It was a more chaotic time, there was no peace, only different things struggling to survive. Until... the "sun" came. Or as it seems a great ball of light." Marouk continued. "In the drawings the light begins leading things and they follow it. There are places where there is no death. But even then, there is bickering, the light wanes, like a candle ready to snuff.
Like a great shadow crawling over everything, covering them in it's inky stickiness. Until they stop the fighting, until they stop the death. And suddenly there are only images of different creatures...Still, quiet, together."
"Hum," I muttered, "Forced to work together like Umbra and Paupa."
"Somewhere along the way the images connect, the darkness and the light. They meet and then it is different again... the little creatures move again, but they don't harm each other, they don't kill. They just... begin cooperating. They build cities, above and below the ground. They climb higher into the sky. Jungles turn into bright stone worlds, vibrant and alive.
And there is a world, beneath one of the creatures. And beneath it a word...Weidt, and the creature above the word is blue. And it too lumbers, laboring near the light and darkness." Frowning Marouk stopped.
"That was a sad tale." Hydra Shock said quietly.
"Indeed, I remember the conversation." Lady Thalia told him.
"I don't know how to interpret it all exactly perfectly, but I think this "darkness and light" was woken when Minax caused the tree to crumble, the Skybark, and crack the earth below it." Marouk said thoughtfully, "And I think it sees your kind, like our kind... bickering and fighting."
"We humans are bad." Neireid said, "We do fight a lot."
Marouk looked over at her and frowned. "But I don't think it understands, we're not like those, others, not so lost."
"But we are lost souls...." Neireid whispered.
"Aye, that sounds awful."Hydra Shock said shuddering.
"Hmm, but with the new Weld appearing, could it be a return to them?" Lady Thalia asked.
Marouk shrugged, I'm still trying to go through the rest of the records, but, there is more and Time Without Dreams says, he remembers that his kind broke away from the light and the darkness. Escaped it, put it to sleep. But he doesn't know how, maybe we can find out. If I can get Evidias to tell me what she's seeing."
"So someone freed it?" Lady Thalia questioned.
"Whether is was Minax's fault, or someone elses." Marouk nodded to Thalia. "But for now... Dahlia wanted me to come tell you all this. But she says something is attacking Trinsic, but that this was important too."
Poor Governor Jov and Trinisic, I thought to myself. Under attack again.
"Disturbing." Sphinkter said.
He moved towards the door, "She's been searching the city, since Evidias started shouting about it from her cave...shouting about Trinsic, and the golden gates." In the city, he waiting for us to join him.
"I have no idea what she meant, so we should search the city. Look for anything...resembling golden gates?"
We broke into small groups to cover more ground. It wasn't long before a message came from Spinkter, he had found the gates in front of the Counselor's guild.
I hurried over to see them. I found a sign on them saying "A road to Traven" Hum Traven, why was that name familiar.
Ás I studied them, a message from DarkLotus came. "Got bugs in front of the west Trinny Bank."
Searching for more of the bugs, I found that even the city guards had joined in the battle. "No Governor to attack." Lady Thalia laughed later when I told her "They must have finally been paid." Hydra Shock added.
After the battle, I found Marouk picking up the archway. "It's... not very heavy...." He looked surprised at how light it was.
I watch as he touched a letter.; Seeing it move he shifted it around. To his surprise it fell out of his hand changing into some looking like a ladder.
"I wonder what happens if I try to climb.." he said before he suddenly disappeared.
Not a good sign I thought to myself as I began to climb. I arrived in a valley that looked very familiar. Looking around, I remembered dying a lot in this area. My inspection stopped when I came upon a golden figure.
"Yes," I replied playing along. "We come seeking you."
The figure nodded, "Have you come to join them. You would not accept the darkness, the quiet, the stillness. Perhaps you will accept the sun, how warm it is against your skin, the quiet lull of it's peaceful verve. Yes?"
"Darkness is not in our nature...the warmth of the sun is." I replied.
"Teach them to cooperate?" Lady Thalia asked, looking suspicious "Freedom is messy Nothing worthwhile is easy."
"Yes, they don't need to be angry, or envious, or afraid." Traccor explained. "Just cooperate, things get done faster, everyone is happy. No one thinks. Thinking is...messy."
"Not good, not good at all," I muttered. "Thinking makes me who I am.. it is my creativity."
Traccor frowned, "Thinking is not needed. You think, and think. Reasons for things, reasons for others... needs to express, more needs, and they conflict. Always conflict with others. And then you get scared, or angry, or sad, or jealous."
"So you think." Sebben Hilaron said.
"So thinking is darkness?" Thalia asked? "You realize that light shines brightest in the dark. and dark cannot exist without light? its balance."
"She speaks, Traccor does.He speaks, Traccor does" Traccor said patiently. "The Lady in White, the Shadow Underneath. Even the Fiery One, knows best that the Lady loves her."
I frowned in thought.Okay the she is the Lady in White, but who is this he?"
She forgot, but now she remembers." Traccor continued. "So, you will help us take the cities. It won't be painful. They'll all go to sleep... then wake up and be happy."
"What is or who Traccor?" Demoss asked.
Ttaccor frowned as if the question bothered. "I am Traccor. What else is there to say?"
"Much, I replied, "We will not help you"
In pain, Traccor rubbed his head. "But Tamais, you came all this way, for what?" He asked confused"
"To stop the evil influence on our cities." I told him'
"What is your true form?" Demoss asked taking advantage of Traccor's confusion.
So many questions, you don't need them." Traccor told
"But we do. Who are you" I insisted. "Who do you serve?"
"Serve who?" Epona echoed.
Winching in pain, Traccor rubbed his forehead. "The Lady in White and the Shadow Underneath. I said that, I serve them, I never disobey... I di... no, I never disobey."
"Ah," I replied. "Who were you before you served them?"
"No more questions, your don't need them. I don't need them."Tracco shivered and grabbed his head. "No more."
"But who were you before you served them?"; I asked again.
"Who... you mean... befo... no. You're trying to trick me." Traccor frowned. "I am Traccor."
"Yes we are and it's working." Epona told him.
"Think, remember wings flying free...wind on your face...joy." I urged.
"I remember...she was Blue...we w...laughing...no. Stop!" Traccor shouted then whistled summoning creatures to attack us.
Traccor watched hoping...for...but no longer sure. "They do not want to see. But they will." He watched as one of the creatures began to look ill and felt...a pang...of something. "I should...go back to him...He'll know what to do."
"You need to stop this!" I shouted at him. "Remember love."
"Love?" Traccor asked.
"You mentioned the Blue one." Lady Thalia had joined me. "You loved her?"
Traccor smiled at a memory. "Blue...she was blue. Stop it." he began to whistle again. "Where is it...it should come..."
I watched him climb the mountain wondering who Traccor was looking for.
"Here, Triack, eat them!" Traccor whistled again and his pet appeared.
Seeing it on the mountain gave us time to prepare. With a roar it leapt down and attacked only to be quickly surrounded and defeated.
I watched Traccor search for his pet. "T... tirack...Tirack where are you?" shaking, Traccor called. "Where... are you Tirack?"
Saddened by the sight, I helped clean up the rest of the bugs then returned home. That night, my dreams were haunted by his calls.
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The Mysterious Traccor
After sharing his research, Marouk lead us to Trinisic. Evidias had warned of golden gates and danger. We found both in Trinisic. With the help of...