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Of the Fire We are Born

Discussion in 'UO White Stag Inn' started by AzRek MNar, Jul 2, 2007.

  1. AzRek MNar

    AzRek MNar Guest

    Of the Fire we are born...

    a short story by John O'Hara

    Part I : Evelyn

    Hail and well met, fellow traveller. I am Evelyn, also known as one of the Fireborn. I was once weak and unknowing of the ways of the land of Sosaria, as it was once called. I was in constant fear for my life, as the start of my life was a miracle to say the least. I have only heard rumors and a few scattershot reports of the time near my birth, but I feel that I have been able to construct an accurate account of those times. I shall do my best to paint an impressive picture for your minds to savor....

    I know not of the name of my parents, nor of their village, but all I know is that it was in the time before the sundering of the world into its peaceful and warlike halves. I had heard that our village was attacked by Lord Blackthorne and his minions and that it was destroyed by them, but I have also heard it was something just as destructive. I was told that the force that had destroyed my village and parents came from the sky. I was told that it had been old when the world was not yet new. I was told that for all the love in Sosaria, it was many times more evil. It's greatest love was to cause us more fear than our worst fear could ever hope to. It was an ancient wyrm known as Harovath in the tongue of mortal ken.

    Harovath had lain dormant for untold millenia, and was only known of through the mutteringof those insane enough to delve into forbidden knowledge best left buried under the refuse and offal of the preceding forgotten ages of Sosaria. His ken were not of the type to associate with any creature, least of all other wyrms. The greatest joy his kind experienced was only in the absence of all other joys known to any else on the sphere known as Sosaria. His race had long ago determined that they were the most perfect in all of creation, and treated all other things accordingly. His kind had once lain waste to most of the world before the elder powers and mortal races of the land rallied against them. Their kind had resented that coalition, which included humans.

    Harovath swore, in the final conflict, that if he were to ever roam the land again, he would make the mortal races subservient to him. He would force them to revere him as a deity. He hoped to rally their fear and worship, in some perverse fashion, to give him the power he craved. When he had awakened from his imprisonment, he began to plot his revenge. All he needed was to be freed from the icy cavern that imprisoned him. The cavern walls all about him were covered with runes laid by all of the elder races. His fearsome breath, his mighty claws, and all his rage could not even begin to smudge them. The entrance to the cavern had shimmered as if a miasma of color had forced itself to shed its own hues in favor of the likeness of the damned for untold millenia. Such a barrier, as pleasing as it was to his perverse sensibilities, could not be breached from the inside.

    Such a barrier could only be breached by one who was willing to give his or her own existence over to the lack of reality known as oblivion. And Harovath had managed to find one who had shown such a profound lack of intelligence. His name was K'Rak and he was a troll of the dumbest kind... as if one could differentiate one trollish moron from another to any degree. Harovath had somehow convinced K'Rak that he could rescue him from oblivion and remake him as a more powerful being, and thus it happened. Harovath had freed himself! He did not care that K'Rak had given up his very existence. Harovath was barely thankful that fate conspired in his favor and led K'Rak to the cavern chasing a damned hart for lunch. All he cared about was that he was freed from his torment, and he made his way to the site of his last battle. It seemed an appropriate starting point for his frenzy.

    Harovath flew the breadth of Sosaria to finally arrive at the site of his defeat. He was amazed at how much the world had changed. Whole continents had shifted in shape and size during his absence! The waters had made new routes for themselves, and the trees did not even look as tall as he had remembered. The mountain once known as H'Rova K'Meht was now laid to waste. He roared in anger that his home no longer existed and made his way to the last battle. He found a thriving village of craftsmen and mages had made their homes there! He soared high above the village and noticed that his presence was known to the villagers. A group of 20 mages had already gathered in the town square and carefully began to cast a spell they believed would save them from the wrath of Harovath, only to realize it was too late.

    Harovath raised his left foreclaw and traced ancient runes unknown to any survivng mortals. He channeled his hatred at the loss of his domain into the spell along with his anger at the thought of mortals daring to oppose him. He reared his head back and roared those ancient words to rend the very fabric of time and space within the bodies of those mortals that dared to oppose him. Just as he was preparing the last phrase of the spell when a mortal, garbed as a man who knew the secrets of the metals of the earth knelt in the square and plead for the life of his wife who was giving birth. Unlike mortals, Harovath could hold the spell energy for days without completing the spell, and he could later finish it if he chose. Harovath chose this time to speak in the tongue of the mortals.

    “Human, why is it that you believe you can encroach upon the lands I so long ago claimed as my own and still plead for the life of your mate? I exact many a terrible and fearsome boon from any mortal who dares to ask for anything of me, and you shall be no different. What is it that you believe you have to offer me in exchange for the life of your wife?” As Harovath finished the words, the human wept and responded. “Most glorious of the immortal wonders that spans the heavens, it is not simply for my wife I beg. I beg for the children yet unborn unto her and to our line. I will pledge the service of myself and my family till the end of time itself. My kin will craft untold beauty from the metals we gather, all in your glorious name!” With those words, the human known to the mortal world as Andrew GoldWonder (for his skill in working gold), prostrated himself before Harovath.
    “Human.”, Harovath responded, “I have seen wonders you would give your very children to even dream of being thought worthy to see! I have feasted upon the bones of those you would call gods and thrown their precious belongings to the four winds as they were offal not worth hoarding! I will not destroy your village until after I have feasted upon the bones of your wife and children!” Harovath began chanting a new spell that he thought worthy of his new found satisfaction in causing suffering. Andrew began begging the mages to save his family, and they also began chanting. Andrew ran back to his home and Harovath followed him closely. The mages continued to chant furiously, just as Andrew got to his home and began chating also. Long ago, he had been taught that his family had helped the elder races imprison Harovath. He had begun to weep as he realized he was willing to destroy all his ancestors had worked for simply to save his wife and children yet unborn. Still, as had his ancestors, he chanted with every fibre of his being. The hammer on his belt began to glow with the enrgy he expended in the chant and he began to twirl it by the leather thong on the handle. He continued to chant as Harovath was doing also and he also wanted to pray, but dared not break his concentration.

    The mages that were in the square were just finishing their spell, as Allison GoldWonder was pushing out not the first, but SECOND child of her birthing! Andrew wept at the miracle before him, but continued to finish his chant as he hurled the hammer at Harovath, who had just finished his spell also! The hammer, aglow with forces not seen for thousands of years, struck the bolt from Harovath as it streamed towards Allison GoldWonder and the world shook as they met. At that exact moment, if not an instant later, the spell of the village mages also came into this world. The sheer mystic conjunction was more than the fabric of time and space could bear. The world around Andrew and his kin cam ablaze with heat such as he had never dreamed could exist in the very bowels of damnation! Despite all the heat, however, everything seemed to freeze in mid motion around him. The world started to sparkle just as it burned and froze, and all he saw seemed to shatter. He screamed for what seemed like eons, and came back to this world amidst the flames and destruction that was once his village. His skin hung in tatters from his bones, his eyes no longer saw nor hung in their sockets, his hair was burnt out of existence. He started to weep for his dead kith and kin, just as his last breath fled from his body and the sweet embrace of deat choked the very joy from his soul as it dragged him down.

    I can only speculate that the magics brought to bear that day somehow either protected me, or threw me forward in time to what is now known as Brittania. I have learned much of this new world that was once my old world. I have learned of the joys of music, the companionship of the creatures of the forest, and the mighty powers of magic given to us by the knowledge passed from the elder races. I was given the name Evelyn by the kind couple that found me in the forest near Haven, and I have taken the name FireBorn from the dragon whose flames of magic took the life of my parents and brother. I have had many interesting adventures thus far, and you will all be sure to hear of them. Safe journeys and the warmth of the sun be yours, my friends.

    Evelyn Fireborn