Docstoc

f_saga_m_editing

Document Sample
f_saga_m_editing Powered By Docstoc
					2   [FANTASY SAGA M]




                       2
                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Fantasy Saga M:
  Millennium


      By


   C.D. Jones




       3
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]




Table of Contents
PART I                                                                                  8
THE END IS A NEW BEGINNING                                                              8
INTRODUCTION                                                                            8
THE LONG LOST SOULS OF THE SKY                                                         10
THE TEMPORAL TRIANGLE                                                                  10
DOMON                                                                                  12
THE MAGIC OF THE OLD WORLD                                                             16
THE CITY THAT STOOD UPON THE BEACH                                                     17
THE BEGINNING OF THE END                                                               18
THE ARRIVAL                                                                            19
THE RUINS OF GLAW                                                                      20
RETURN TO CASTLE DOMON                                                                 21
RUMORS OF THE MECH                                                                     23
THE AQUA GATE REVISITED…                                                               27
THE UNDERWATER CRYSTAL                                                                 28
SAMUEL THE TECHNO KNIGHT                                                               32
DILIGENCE                                                                              33
MAGIC OF THE ANCIENT WORLD                                                             36
INTERLUDE                                                                              37
DOOM CASTLE                                                                            38
DARKHUM’S CAVE                                                                         40
NORTHEAST GLACIERS AND THE GLACIER SHRINE                                              42
THE RUINS OF KAL’MATIK                                                                 44
THE FRAGMENT OF SIN                                                                    47
SOUTHWEST PENNINSULA                                                                   50
DOMON DUNGEONS                                                                         52
UNLOCKING MROBID                                                                       56
“THANK YOU FOR FREEING ME. IT IS GOOD TO SEE YOU AGAIN MASTER. HOW SHALL I PROCEED?”   56
CITY OF MROBID                                                                         58
THE MAZE OF THE MAELSTROM                                                              59
FOUR ELEMENTS, FOUR DRAGONS                                                            62
JOURNEY TO MYSTIC ISLAND PART ONE: THE MECH FACTORY                                    64
JOURNEY TO MYSTIC ISLAND PART TWO: THE ISLAND OF IMPS                                  77
THE ISLAND OF MYSTICS                                                                  81




                                           4
                                           [FANTASY SAGA M] 5




PART II                                                   83
BACK TO THE BEGINNING OF THINGS….                         83
TEMPORAL PARADOXES                                        85
MAGIC OF THE OLD WORLD                                    90
THE ICE CONTINENT                                         93
THE PEOPLE OF THE FLAME                                   95
THE CITY OF WITCHES                                       96
THE FOREST OF ELVES                                       97
THE SECRET UNDERWATER PASSAGEWAY                          98
THE CITY OF THE DWARVES, REVISITED                        99
THE GREAT VOLCANO                                        100
JOURNEY TO THE UNDERWORLD OF TERRA                       102
THE VILLAGE OF VICE                                      104
THE KEEPERS                                              107
THE WORLD CLOSEST TO THE CORE                            109
SOUTH TOWN                                               111
THE WORLD CLOSEST TO THE CORE…AGAIN                      121
THE ASSAULT UPON SORE                                    129
THE TECHNOLOGY OF THE DWARF KING                         133
3500 ANNO DOMINAE                                        146
DESERT HILLS REACTOR                                     152
STEEL MOUNTAINS AND CARNIVAL CAVERNS                     156
THE DEKO TUBES                                           161
ELEMENTAL ISLAND                                         163
ROAD TO EIEDON                                           170
EIEDON




                                       5
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

                                                             175

PART III                                                     178
THE FINAL ACT                                                178
PATH TO ARMAGEDDON                                           186
FLASHBACKS                                                   191
WATERFALL SHRINES                                            193
ACOLYTES                                                     199
THE SHAMAN OF CHRONOS                                        204
SANDRE FLOOR ONE – OAKTON AND THE PEOPLE OF THE FOREST       209
SANDRE FLOOR TWO – THE FLOODED WORLD-FLOOR                   213
SANDRE FLOOR THREE – THE MOUNTAIN FLOOR                      220
SANDRE FLOOR FOUR – THE LAND OF THE NEFARIOUS DARK DRAGONS   223
SANDRE OUTER TUNNELS                                         227
SANDRE FLOOR FIVE – ROYAL LAND OF THE LIGHT DRAGONS          230
BACK DOWN THE TOWER (SANDRE FLOORS FOUR THROUGH ONE)         234
VOLCANO FRAGMENTS AND THE DARK DRAGON CYBER TOWER            240
SANDRE FLOOR MINUS ONE – DESERTON                            244
THE FOUR FOULEST                                             248
BIRTH PAINS                                                  254
SANDRE FLOOR MINUS TWO - PLATEAON                            256
SANDRE FLOOR NULL – THE NULL FLOOR                           262
THE SWORDS AND SAINTS                                        264
RIVERWIND AND RIVERSKY                                       268
TURN A STONE AND I AM THERE                                  272
MEGLAPOLIS AND THE SPACE TIME DUNGEON                        278
THE RESPONSIBILITY THAT COMES WITH FREEDOM                   286
BITE THE HAND THAT FEEDS                                     290

SPECIAL THANKS                                               293




                                        6
    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7




7
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]



                                    FANTASY SAGA M


Part I
                       And the name of the star is called Wormwood: and
                       the third part of the waters became wormwood; and
                       many men died of the waters, because they were made
                       bitter. Rev 8:11 Artemis



The End is a New Beginning

Two lovers, Neil and Saria, drive their car into the sunset. As they arrive at their summer
get-away, the two lean against a fence and kiss as a comet streaks by through the sky.

Introduction

According to our best historians, ten thousand years ago the stellar object Wormwood
struck our once GReat planet. The time of its impact was the peak of our civilization, a
time when cities covered the planet and a false veil of peace reigned throughout. The dark
energy of Wormwood blanketed Terra, our planet, causing global changes. At the impact
site fires raged without anything to fuel them, and the earth burned solely of itself.
Storms enveloped the skies everywhere and every day the sea level rose. Hurricanes
crashed throughout and earthquakes swallowed the cities that mankind had been so proud
of.

For one thousand years the planet lay in darkness. Civilizations burned and all of hell was
unleashed as mutant creatures roamed the earth. The surviving race of man was no longer
what it once had been in its glory days.

The population of Terra fled further and further inland. We know that at approximately
five thousand A.W. (after Wormwood) the planet finally reached equilibrium. However,
its people did not. Though we do not know the contents of Wormwood, its effects upon
the people are known. Those who survived hid in shelters made of brick and stone. They
fought each other for food and clothing. Plants were few and far between. The animals
that were once a primary source of food had been tainted and mutated by the comet into
monsters that desired only to feed upon human flesh.

The humans that were mutated gathered and prayed to their god, who was known in
Terranese as M’sra, which translates simply into “The Master”, for salvation. They soon
found new gifts in the mutations. When creatures and people died they crystallized.
Whoever touched the crystal would gain the knowledge and insight of the deceased. With
this new knowledge came strange powers as well. To these people came the ability to



                                              8
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

manipulate the elements, fire and water, and wind and earth. They believed the Master
had given them these divine gifts to establish a new civilization of magic that could
combat the monsters that threatened their very lives. With each monster killed or person
sacrificed, came a new ability or strengthening of an old ability.

Cities rose and fell. Many races learned to harness the power of the comet, but none were
GReater than those of the city Domon and those of its sister city Damon. Domon was the
center of science and industry. It was commissioned to harvest minerals from the earth
and use them to build machines. Damon was to be the center of aGRiculture and religion.
Damon would put forth new magicians skilled in their trade.
GeoGRaphically speaking, the cities lay opposite each other along the prime meridian of
Terra. Jealous of each other’s power, the sister cities began what seemed to be a never
ending war. Very little is known about the GReat War except that it involved magic
versus technology. Damon’s records say that Domon GRew GReedy and wanted it all –
both magic and technology. Domon’s records say that Damon had begun a holy war
against them. What we do know for fact is that ties between the sister’s cities were
broken off. By now Domon had a very powerful army of magicians and Damon had a
technological army built using relics discovered from before Wormwood.

The GReat War cost both nations a hefty price. Robots the size of skyscrapers battled
magicians soaring through the sky, riding dragons. Canons fired from one city to the next
and new castles were built to protect the boundaries of the twin cities. For a thousand
years the cities of neomankind were at war.

Deep in the underGRounds of the cities where the polluted smoke soared to the sky a
GRoup of vigilantes formed. Tired of the war they prayed to the Master who had given
neomankind the gifts that they now wasted in the slaughter of each other. The vigiliantes
met in monasteries throughout the world, in secret, so that neither king nor queen knew
of their existence. They searched for a weapon to defeat all weapons, a way to put the
war to an end for once and for all. They called themselves the Knights of Technology or
Techno Knights.

The Techno Knights developed a new weapon, but with GReat sacrifice. By bonding the
crystal of a passed being to their bodies, a new form of armor and weapon was born. The
science of this was kept secret and was known only to the Techno Knights.

History tells us that the Techno Knights defeated each of the cities one by one and using
their advanced science absorbed their opponent’s magic, thus keeping it from the use of
the armies. As they GRew in power the Techno Knights flooded the earth and sealed the
machines and cities of man beneath the ocean and in other unreachable places. All that
they left were the two founding cities, Damon and Domon, and a few distant islands.
Damon and Domon, who had started the war, were now isolated each on an island of its
own. As a final testament to their humility, the Techno Knights sealed their own power
away in a special sacrificial ritual. They hid in the deepest underGRound and even
beneath the ocean’s floor and used their power to turn into statues of crystal, keeping ever




                                             9
1
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

watchful for the next time they would have to come into service for the good of
neomankind.

The Long Lost Souls of the Sky

High above the earth in a time far in the future there exists an island kingdom we call
Serenity. In it resides the last of the human race. The citizens of Serenity worship the one
and true only God. They know him as the Master, the keeper of secrets, the Father and
Protector of all life in the Universe. Far below them lay the ruins of the scorched earth.
Long after the time of the comet, it is said an evil emperor took the reigns of the devil and
laid waste to the earth. He resurrected a tower built during the times of chaos, when the
comet had first caused war. The tower was called Babel and some say that entire worlds
were trapped within it.

The king of Serenity, Sonon, had named his favorite child after his kingdom. This child’s
name was Seren. On one fateful day, Sonon had taken his two oldest boys out to train
high in the mountains of the island. In the island of Serenity, a GReat chasm exists.
Through it pours the pure water that comes from the spring at the top of the mountains.
At the base of this spring a shrine exists, called Sky Pinnacle. It is the highest point that
any person can climb in this scarred world. Today, Sonon and his oldest were training in
the ancient art of the guardian keepers. The humans designated as Keepers had been
trained throughout time in the art of magic, so that they could keep the secrets of
Wormwood safe from those who would try and tap its power.

Sonon gathers his strength and begins his assault upon his oldest. The boy dodges the
strike and returns with a torrent of fire. Sonon laughs heartily and raises his hands into
the air. The fire is extinguished and Sonon smiles. They continue their sparring,
meanwhile Seren is GRowing bored and climbing the cliff to the side. Sonon’s oldest son
throws a lightning bolt, but Seren distracts Sonon. In the last second before the strike hits
him, Sonon deflects it. But it is too late, the bolt of energy strikes the nearby cliff and an
avalanche ensues. The three begin their escape from the heights of Mt. Serenity, but fate
has thrown them a twist. The GRound gives way, and Sonon and Seren are trapped on the
other side of the chasm. The GRound begins to shake again, and Sonon
and Seren is thrown through the water into the chasm.


The Temporal Triangle

In the time before the comet Wormwood struck…in fact, in the times before man even
wandered solid GRound, there existed a distortion in time. Its location was not exact, for
time is fluid and moves with space. But it has circled the globe, causing confusion and
mystery throughout the history of our tiny blue sphere. When man was flying planes and
exploring space, they called it the “Bermuda Triangle”. But to the residents of the planet
after the fall of man, it was called the “Temporal Triangle,” for those creatures did not
deny its effect upon the world.


                                             10
                                                                                    1
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1


It was at this strange junction in time and space when Sonon and Seren fell to their
certain deaths, when the Temporal Triangle appeared to save them. As the fates may have
it, the triangle opened and as the two plummeted towards the ocean, they were sucked
into the bizarre vortex. First was Sonon, for he had fallen first, and he was transported
far, far into the past. Further into the past than he could have ever imagined. And then
was Seren, taken not quite as far into the past, but into the times that had been
nevertheless.

Sonon awoke on a lonely beach with only driftwood and seaweed to call friends. Far
ahead of him stood the ruins of a Citadel once occupied by a superior race of knights.
And he knew that his fate was to rebuild his kingdom, and find his lost son…no matter
what the cost.

Seren awoke on a beach as well, but not quite so lonely. Around him stood a people who
spoke of a place called “Zig.” The people were peculiar…not in the normal sense of a
person being peculiar, but in the fact that each of them stood with a twin. Each of the pair
knew everything about their sibling and their sibling knew everything about them. And it
was these people that guided Seren to the capital of their overlords. For the people of Zig
lived in service to the industrial capital of the continent. A place called Domon.




                                            11
1
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Domon

It was 8:15 a.m. when the black guard knocked upon the door. Twenty years had passed
since Seren first woke up on the southern beach of the continent where Domon stands. He
breathed a heavy sigh, for today he was to meet with the Emperor before his journey.
Seren had trained long and hard for the position he was in. He had become the Emperor’s
right hand man. He had started out as a mere servant on the execution block, taking the
lives of those who had displeased his lord and master. He had risen through the ranks of
the black guard, to become their supreme commander. Some said that Seren was even
more bloodthirsty than the Emperor himself.

Still living with a sense of cruelty he had learned as an executioner, he wielded a barbed
sword that literally rended the flesh from his victims. It was called “Vyral.” More a
weapon of torture than a weapon of a knight, Vyral was a four-sided blade with large
barbs or hooks spiraling up to the tip of the spike. There never was a clean cut when
Seren struck.

At Seren’s feet was the ceremonial executioner’s axe and on the table to the left of him
his keycard. His room was empty of most everything except a few books on old world
science and his favorite book that had surpassed time, Ome Sumac’s Art of War. He also
had a videodisc that had been his pre-briefing on his next task. Seren was already running
late for the briefing on the endeavor.

Seren sprung up from bed, GRabbed his keycard, and met the escort outside his door.
After quickly demeaning the fool black guard outside who had chosen to wake him, he
prepared for his meeting. He donned his sword and touched a crystal , which he wore
around his neck. Seren had been the very GRateful guinea pig of the scientists of Domon.
Around the beginning of the Emperor’s rule, a strange crystalline substance had been
found deep within the catacombs of the castle. The strange people who lived at the
southern beach were employed to mining this substance. The scientists of Domon had
learned to GRow these crystals, which acted like a living being. For the crystals, I have
been told, were not of this world. As Seren touched the crystal he was surrounded by a
presence of pure hate. The creature was somewhere between life and death or man and
machine. It was a symbiotic armor, a presence that could protect him, but most likely was
interested more in its own survival.

The most uncanny fact of all, was that the massive industrial complex that was the Castle
Of Domon, was surrounded as well by this strange presence. GRowing upon the walls of
the castle and all about its many towers and parapets was this being filled with hate. From
it seeped poisonous bile, which filled the moats and lagoons surrounding the castle.
It was this that was poisoning the twin citizens of Zig, and it was this that covered the
island of Domon in a biting, noxious haze.

Seren and his escort left his room in the Minister’s Tower, a soaring tower that scaled
second in height to the Emperor’s private tower. Very few were allowed to enter the


                                            12
                                                                                     1
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Emperor’s Tower. Only the black guard and the top officials of the Domon Empire had
access to the massive structure. A GReat veil of secrecy was held over the nature of the
things that lay in the Emperor’s Tower

The party traveled to the dock at the top of the spiraling Minister’s Tower. From there
they would have to travel by dragon to the Emperor’s tower for the meeting. The
Minister’s Tower held the quarters of the entire army of Domon, as was by far one of the
largest sections of the castle.

Castle Domon was situated on the south-most continent, known accordingly as the
Continent of Domonia and to some as the Continent of Aslen. Facing the sea is the keep’s
main gate that is also known as the Earth Gate. Covering the old worn stonework of the
castle was the symbiotic armor, only developed within the last hundred years by the best
of Domon’s scientists. It was organic in nature and from this slice of doom was
developed the defensive force that made Domon a world power. It was also known as
Hell’s Plate. Castle Domon is riddled with the pollution of industry, from its bile filled
lagoon to its smoggy air. How something organic (and symbiotic yet) could live on the
walls of such a place is a mystery to all but the GReatest scientists in Domon.

From the Minister’s Tower the dragon flew to the central dock below the Air Gate.
Domon has four gates, each monstrous in size. The gates correspond to their own element
and separate partitions of the castle. A tower rises up from the center of the keep known
as the Equipment Tower. Inside the equipment tower huge spikes extend from the central
pillar in a menacing decorative fashion. At the top of the tower is where the castle’s air
gate can be seen from miles away. It is a massive spiral gate that opens like the shutter of
a camera. It is the only thing that extends outside of the castle’s defensive field. Daily
airships enter and exit through this monstrous gate. It leads into the airport of the castle.

Besides the airship docks, the Equipment Tower holds the storage facilities, the
warehouses for the factories, and the main rail station. The railway extends through the
continent and is the only way into Domon Castle without going through one of the four
gates. Every day thousands of citizens of Domon travel into and outside the castle
through this one station.

The final stop on the way is the Emperor’s Tower. Riddled with lights on the outside, the
Emperor’s Tower contains the top-notch research facilities of the Domon Empire. The
symbiotic armor runs smooth and sleek up the high pinnacles. At its very top, between
the jagged peaks lay the landing station for the dragons that Seren and his escorts were
riding.

Far below the Emperor’s Tower and before the GReat Earth Gate lay the Slave Tower.
Within its walls are held the factory where the slaves of the Domonian Ministry toiled
hours on end forging swords and new technological weapons for some unknown war to
come. Here the slaves slept in their quarters and here the rebellious slaves were
imprisoned before being brought into the coliseum to fight for the Emperor’s enjoyment.



                                             13
1
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Emperor of Domon loves blood and gore and loves to pit an unarmed man against
captured monster. The most skilled of all the slaves (also the most valuable slaves) work
in the Engine Room where the castle and city’s power comes from.

Domon Castle was not always high-tech and modern. The Fire Gate is an ancient
doorway into the crypts of Domon Castle, which have been engulfed in an everlasting
flame since the end of the GReat War. It has earned its name thus. Surrounding the Fire
Gate are ruins from a time when Domon was just a religious community. A GRand
courtyard stands there, within a monastery called the Citadel of Knights. These ruins
stand far below the towers that make up the modern Domon Castle and are rarely visited.

Seren had prepared for his meeting and began to make his way up the tower and to the
Emperor’s chamber. He had not been briefed for this mission yet and unlike the typical
mission he had not heard any rumors. When he arrived in the Emperor’s boardroom, the
long oak table was filled with the head officials of the Empire - from the General in
charge of the Empire’s military, to the Chief Scientist that had forged the Symbiotic
Armor.


The Emperor himself, who rarely spoke, began to address Seren.

“Seren, Master Executioner and Lieutenant Assassin of my army I welcome you,” spoke
the man in the long robes as he rose from his seat. He wore a gleaming black crown with
jewels set in it, and beneath the robe the bulge of the butt of a very large sword, The
Zanbattou, could be seen. He is the Emperor of the Domonian Empire. He is known to
the common folk and slaves only as the Emperor. To those in his army and who have
been GRaced with his presence he has another name. They call him Emperor Blade after
the oversized Zanbattou sword he carries and wields with ease against his enemies.

Seated in the board room, in clockwise order: the Emperor, General Tolstov, Prime
Minister of Defense, Minister of Science, Minister of Magic Research, and finally an
empty chair for Seren. Seren took returned the Emperor’s GReeting and seated himself
promptly

“We have unearthed what appears to be the remains of a Techno Knight. It is frozen in
stone, in a cavern to the northeast of the old docks. Please proceed there immediately.
Travel through the Aqua Gate and assist the black guard there in their investigation.”

“Is that all?” Seren had gone on many routine missions like this before, investigating
ancient artifacts. Domon had a special interest in anything that would give them a
military advantage of Damon – their ex-sister city. Since the old world powers had been
sealed, they scavenged any forgotten technologies possible. He wondered what the
Emperor could be planning, and how powerful this technology was that it had been kept
secret for so long.




                                           14
                                                              1
                                             [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

“Yes that is all. You are dismissed.”




                                        15
1
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Magic of the Old World

Seren made his way down from the Royal Tower to the ancient Aqua Gate. In times past,
the Aqua Gate had served as a barrier between the docks and the interior of the castle.
But since all boat travel to Damon had ceased, the gate was now rarely used. After a very
uneventful trip, Seren finally reached the excavation site.

Outside of a cavern filled with stalactites and stalagmites, stood two vigilant black
guards. One on each side of the entrance, Seren approached them.

“I am here to investigate the Techno Knight remains.”

“Very well. Proceed,” they said in unison.

Inside, the cavern was poorly lit. The unusual fact was, there was not a single sign of any
other black guard besides those who stood outside. In the center of the cavern was a stone
figure, curled up upon the GRound with a GRimace upon its face. Out of pure curiosity,
Seren approached…

A spectacular light flashed throughout the room, with a source unknown. Seren covered
his eyes and kneeled on the GRound in confusion. The guards rushed in, but were
vaporized at the entrance. Suddenly flames burst from the earth, the cavern began to
shake, and the crystals lining the ceiling GRew fiery hot. An eerie voice echoed beyond
the GRave…

“This gift I give to you…So that you may fight. Gather the souls of magic and protect the
sons of man. For one day soon you shall be tested and consequences will be dire. The
world needs a new hero, and I place my trust and my life in you. Take my soul…”

The stone corpse shattered and in its place stood a single glistening crystal. Seren reached
out to touch it and something amazing happened. His sword shattered just like the statue
had, and his armor melted away. But not only was it a physical transformation but one of
the heart as well. Seren was no longer Seren the Executioner, Seren the Captain of the
Black Guard, Seren the servant of Emperor Blade. He was like a boy again…he was once
again the child who had fallen from the sky and appeared upon a mysterious beach. And
as the flames died in the cavern, Seren slowly slipped away into sleep.




                                             16
                                                                                     1
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

The City that Stood Upon the Beach

Sitting high upon the GRave of an ancient volcano stood the city of Glaw. It was known
as the Pearl City and it surrounded the magnificent castle Damon. In the very center of
the castle Damon, a GReat statue of their founder had been erected, reaching high into
the clouds. And if you had the eyes of an eagle, you might have been able to peer into the
right eye of the statue of Gladius, where a tiny window let in the light of the sun to shine
upon the body of Seren of Serenity, as his charred body lay upon a four-post bed.

“Boy, can you hear me?”

“Ugh…Who are.AHHH!”, screamed Seren in pain.

“Rest son. You are badly wounded.”

Hunched over Seren was the leader of the Republic of Damon, a quixotic elderly man
known only as Zoko. The only survivor of a pair of twins from the village of Zig, Zoko
had been elected leader of Damon during the golden age of the republic. He led the
republic for most of his life, consistently fighting off the threat of invasion from their
sister city, Domon.

As Seren attempted to rest and recuperate, an explosion caused havoc throughout the city
of Glaw. Zoko rushed to the single window in the master bedroom and was shocked at
what he saw. The GReat shipyard on the coast of the island had been bombarded with
canon fire. The Domonians had finally ended the cease-fire. The canons that are perched
upon edge of the island of Domon, high over the Twin Mountains that rise up through the
capital of the Empire, were angled directly toward Glaw once again.

In the distant haze a fleet of airships and dragon’s fitted with riders could be seen
approaching. The cease-fire had most certainly ended. The dark army of Domon had
begun its assault and would stop at nothing until it got what it wanted. But what could it
want this badly?

Zoko leapt from the balcony into the cold winter air. As he did, he wrapped his cape
tightly around his body and began to change shape. Hair turned to feathers and
fingernails to talons. In the time that it takes for a single thought to form, Zoko had taken
the form of a GReat eagle soaring through the clouds toward the enemy fleet. The war
ships of the Republic began to sail and the true secret of the statue of Gladius was soon to
be revealed.




                                             17
1
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Beginning of the End

The battle was not going in the favor of the free. Damon was suffering badly and had
brought out virtually all of their forces. They had released their eagle riders, led by Zoko,
to fight the dragons of Domon. Their pearl guard fought off the black guard of Emperor
Blade at the foot of the city, and their magicians and priests battled against the
necromancers and sorcerers of the Empire. Only one thing could have turned the tables
and Zoko was reluctant to use it.

A shot rang out, and Zoko was struck. The wound was close to the heart and soon to be
fatal. He fell from the sky to the GRound and began to realize his own mortality. The
army of the Republic retreated to the innermost walls of the castle and Zoko realized the
time had come to pull out their ace. He shouted, “Release them!”

The chief engineer pushed down upon the heavy lever in his laboratory. It was time for
redemption. Portals all upon the GReat statue of Gladius opened, and out of them
emerged the army of mobile suits, or gears, emerged. Wielding the power of pure
physical force and superior technology, the gears tore apart the army of Domon. But the
call had been too late. The city of Glaw stood, barely stood that is, in ruins. The castle
was in flames and crumbling. And Zoko climbed the bloody stairs with his crimson
soaked cape to check on Seren, to see if the stranger had survived the aftermath.

Seren was barely conscious and still wounded. The soldier in him began to scream out,
and he knew that familiar smell of smoke. It was the smell of burning flesh and it was the
stench of war. He slowly sat up in pain and pulled off the bloody bandages around his
head. Seren looked around the room, and realized that he was in a very dangerous
situation. Tongues of flame lapped at the wooden ceiling supports and soon they would
not do much good. It was time to escape while he had the chance.

This battle had been too much for Seren. With everything he had gone through, this was
just plain too much. Seren looked down at his hands only to see them shake, and as
he looked forward his vision began to GRow dull and soon it was only darkness he saw.




                                             18
                                                                                     1
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

The arrival

In the shadowy doorway to Zoko’s chambers, there stood a statuesque figure. Wrapped
around his torso was a glistening red suit of armor and in his hands a red fiery sword. He
declared himself the angel of death and as he stepped forward I’m sure that he could have
even struck fear into God himself. He raised his sword high into the air, and the flames
jumped upon the ceiling supports. He tossed the body of Zoko onto the GRanite floor
with one arm, chuckled, and vanished into the passageway.

Seren regained consciousness to find the room filled with the fire of hell from the visitor.
Zoko laid dead upon the floor, crushed beneath the support beam that had once held the
ceiling of the room. Seren struggled onto his feet and approached the body of Zoko.

Zoko remained unresponsive, but Seren was not about to leave his body to be consumed
with the rest of the Republic. He tried to take hold of Zoko’s cape to drag him to safety.

“Take this gift of mine young soldier, for now I know your true identity.” spoke a voice.

“Who am I? Why am I in your kingdom? How can you know my identity, while I still
know nothing?” Seren cried out.

“You will find out soon enough my young friend. Take my life and treat it as if it were
your own. For in this crystal lay the source of all my strength.” spoke Zoko.

Zoko’s body GRadually began to change. His arms and legs began to shine, and soon all
that was left was a single perfectly shaped crystal. Seren would have wept, but he knew
that there was not enough time. He feared what this crystal may do to him, but trusted in
the words of Zoko’s spirit. Seren touched the crystal with the tip of his forefinger and it
vanished. And as the crystal disappeared, so did the wounds and the scars upon Seren’s
body. The crystal had purified his body and healed it.

Now, with the strength of ten men, with the strength of Zoko, Seren fled the burning
castle towards the ruins of Glaw.




                                             19
2
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The ruins of Glaw

Seren trudged through the ruins of the GReat city. Along his way he saw the corpses of
villagers. The Domonian’s spared none, not woman, not child. Wounded soldiers gave up
their armor and swords for him, telling him to fight for them against the evil of the
Empire. Finally our young hero discovered an injured priest lying along the beach.

“Young man, come closer,” spoke the priest. Seren approached, and kneeled by the
priest.

“I see the Master’s power in your eyes.”

“Who is the Master?”

“The Master is who we worship. It is said that long ago mankind worshipped only one
god. We believe the Master gave us magic. He gave us this power to protect others not to
harm one another. That is why when GReat magicians die we crystallize. Our souls carry
onward to protect each other. That is the Master’s gift to us.” The magician laid his head
back and clenched the wound in his chest.

“If you were worthy of Zoko’s crystal, then you are most certainly worthy of mine. Take
my hand young one as I pass my power to you.”

“What? No, don’t” Seren cried. But he knew it couldn’t be undone. The wound was too
deep and all he could do is give the priest peace. He touched the hand of the priest as he
vanished into the misty air of the beach of Glaw. And just then, something terrible
happened. The world began to spin around Seren. He lost his balance and fell on one
knee. The necklace around his neck, the one thing left over from his past life as a
Domonian began to glow fiery red. It was calling him, beckoning him to return. The sand
turned to black stone, the sky from a beautiful blue to a hazy auburn, and the mist of the
beach became choking smog that could only mean one thing. He had returned to the
castle of Domon.




                                            20
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

Return to Castle Domon

Seren tore the charm from his neck and threw it upon the cold black stone. He was atop
the Royal tower back in the castle of the demented Emperor Blade. Here the wounded
dragon riders had collected to heal. Sorcerer’s stood over them casting, while the
necromancers took care of the dead in their own dastardly way. Slicing with their many
knives, the necromancers were harvesting the dead dragon riders for their bones, organs,
and the many other reagents they could use in their spells.

Towering in front of all of them was Blade with a devilish smirk. He took his gaze away
from the dragon rider’s and focused it upon Seren.

“Well, well, well. You did an excellent job Seren. You have harvested the magic of not
only the techno knight, but two of those Damonian fools as well. And one of them was
the proud Zoko, leader of them all! I truly am impressed. The sacrifice to our forces was
well worth what you have recovered for us.”

“Recovered! I don’t even know who you are or what you are talking about!”

“You don’t remember do you? That’s ok. You are still in shock from the symbiotic armor
being removed. In time you will remember everything that you have done. You cannot
escape your conscience. You are, after all, only human, right?”

“What? Human?”

“That’s why I took you in. You reminded me so much of my son...my long lost son. If
only I could remember his name.”

“You are insane! I am returning to Damon.”

“Not with the crystals of Zoko and their chief magician in your soul you aren’t. I will
begin the harvest process. Soldier, summon Eldien! We must transfer the crystal from his
soul to mine, so that I may break the seal upon the tower and restore the old world!” he
said with a wicked GRin.

Seren reached to his side and remembered the blade that he had received from a wounded
pearl guard. He lashed at Blade, but the Emperor dodged it easily. The Emperor raised his
arms, and released bolts of blue lightning that sent Seren reeling.

It must have been either Zoko’s or the chief magician’s spirit in him. Seren raised his
arms just like Blade had just done, and out of them burst pure white flames. Blade fell to
one knee and clutched his sword. But it was too late. Eldien had arrived.

Seren was hauled off into the depths of Domon’s magic research laboratory.



                                            21
2
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Don’t worry. This won’t hurt a bit, Captain of the Black Guard...” Eldien took a long
needle and jabbed it into Seren’s chest. Soon Seren was numb from head to toe, and was
no longer even able to keep his mouth shut. Eldien fitted him with a breathing apparatus,
and then tossed him into one of the magic extraction tubes.

“You see Seren, you were betrayed. You were just a toy of the Emperor’s. He had your
capture planned all along. After you received the magic of the Techno Knight, he simply
tossed you into the ocean near Damon. He knew that Zoko wouldn’t be able to resist
aiding a wounded innocent soldier such as you, no matter where he came from. You
weren’t the first of the Emperor’s toys, and you won’t be the last.”

“What does he have planned for me?”

“You will just be recycled into the factory with the rest. As for the magic, it looks like we
have enough power to finally break the underwater seal. All of hell is about to break
loose on this planet.”

The magic extraction tank filled with a bizarre GReen fluid. The fluid felt like the surface
of the sun to Seren, it burned badly and as Zoko’s crystal’s power was removed from
him, the old scars of battle and burns from the Techno Knight began to reappear. Still
clueless to his origins and his fate, Seren fell into a deep sleep.




                                             22
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Rumors of the Mech

When Seren awoke those who were once his subordinates back to the factory were
transporting him. The soldiers transporting him chitchatted about the rumors going
around the castle.

“Did you hear? The emperor is travelling to the underwater crystal.”

“The underwater crystal?”

“Yeah, apparently a mech was discovered in a seal deep on the ocean floor between
Damon and Domon.”

“What is a mech?”

“Artificial suits of armor given life by magic…to put it mildly. They are like the gears
that Damon has…but given sentience by magic. They can fight on their own, cast spells,
and they usually are tall, as building part biology, part technological technological. Like
some sort of god.”

“Well how is he going to breathe under there?”

“He’s the Emperor. He can do anything! Don’t forget, we have the best research facilities
on this pathetic ball of rock and water.”

Mechs. Mechanical beings, completely autonomous, brought to life by the forces of
magic. Back when the Techno Knights were waging war against Damon and Domon, the
sister cities built the Mechs as self-defense. Some were small; some were the size of
entire continents. It would take an army of Techno Knights just to destroy one.

“What’s he planning to do with it?”

“I don’t know. But imagine the power in a Mech that size! The crystal is like a castle in
itself. We would have so much power we could do anything we ever wanted!”

“Indeed. But come on, we have unshackle this low life and get him to work.”

Hearing what the Emperor planned to do worried Seren. Blade may not have had enough
power alone to break the underwater seal, but with the power of the Techno Knight that
had sealed it he probably could probably shatter the crystal. Not to mention the power of
Zoko and his chief magician. With the combination of all three, it could easily be revived.

The soldiers left Seren in the dark, dank mines below the factory. Here the villagers of
Zig shoveled away at the earth, searching for ancient relics and new sources of magic for
the power-hunGRy Emperor. Seren was handed his shovel and began digging. The


                                            23
2
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

soldiers turned around to leave the mine. As soon as they turned, the gears in Seren’s
head began to turn as well. He looked at the shovel, then at the soldiers, and an idea
sprung into his mind. He was not a fool, he was a trained soldier. And unlike the other
residents of the mine, he had not yet submitted to the will of the Emperor. He crept
towards the soldiers, walking when they walked, and stopping when they stopped. Finally
he gained enough GRound and raised his shovel above him.

Down came the makeshift weapon upon the first soldier’s skull. The soldier fell like a rag
doll and the second soldier made an about face. Seren blocked the strike from the second
soldier with the handle, and then pilfered the enemy’s short sword. With a quick stab to
the heart, the second soldier toppled and Seren was free from his armed escort.

Seren donned the soldier’s uniform and stealthily slipped through the mine. He did not
know the layout of the Domon mines well, but he did know that one of the railway
tunnels would lead him out of them.

Domon city was nestled in the enclave between the twin mountain ranges of the island.
Passing over it was the factory’s railway, which made stops at the mines on the eastern
mountain range and western mountain ranges. Luckily for Seren, the railway also passed
into the castle. In fact, it was the only way into the castle without going through the
massive elemental Earth Gate that guarded the main entrance from the city. If he were to
enter through there, he would have to cross the lagoon by taking the royal bridge, and
somehow avoid the massive numbers of guards and dragons that kept the castle secure.

It was necessary for the railway to enter the castle in an insecure fashion. Thousands of
prisoners were transported everyday via the railway into the mines to work and then back
to the prison for sleep. The railway also made a stop at the factory inside the castle and
the research laboratory. This was necessary to get a daily fresh crop of test subjects and
workers.

Within the castle walls, towering high above the factory, prison, and other buildings were
the Equipment Tower and the Royal Tower. The Equipment Tower was the home of
Domon’s dragon and airship fleets. At the very top was a massive gateway, even GReater
in size than the Earth Gate. It was here that the massive Domon war machine could enter
and exit the castle.

The Royal Tower was probably the most interesting out of all sights to see in Castle
Domon. Deep in the bottom of the tower lies the Fire gate. It was named this, because
beyond it lay the forever burning Royal Crypt. Around the time of the Thousand Years
War, it had been cursed and ever since has burned with a GReen magical fire that
consumes all who dare enter it. Some believe the culprit is a shard of Wormwood, but
nobody has ever survived long enough within to extract it. In the Minister’s Tower to the
west, the black guard have their home and this is also where Seren’s old quarters used to
be. At the highest level of the Royal tower there is the Royal Board Room, and the
Emperor’s Watch Post. From the Emperor’s watch is a heavily guarded staircase that



                                            24
                                                                                  2
                                                                 [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

leads to another tower, the Emperor’s Spire. The Emperor’s Spire has two rooms only,
the Emperor’s quarters and his throne room. Only by climbing through the Royal Tower
and past all of the elite guard of the Emperor and passing through the small covered
staircase to the Emperor’s Spire, can one reach his majesty.

Seren knew what he had to do. He would have to make his way through the railway, out
of the eastern mines and into the castle. From there he had to make his way through the
courtyard, to the north, where the Aqua Gate lay. The Aqua Gate was the final of the four
gates for entering and exiting Domon. It was hardly ever used, and consisted of a tunnel
dug beneath the outer wall and under the lagoon, opening out into the northern docks.

After a few very short encounters with the weaklings that guarded the mine, Seren had
found his way to the railway. Unfortunately, it appeared word had somehow spread of his
escape and as he hid in the shadows waiting for a railcar to pass, something else was
waiting as well.

The railcar approached and Seren boarded it. He was ready to get to the courtyard and the
Aqua Gate as soon as possible. The car jolted and began to move. Luckily none of the
guards recognized him and they continued their small talk as the car sped towards the
walled fortress in the distance.

Suddenly, the car slammed to a halt. The lights went dark and outside one could hear the
sound of nails screeching as they scratched through the metal. In from the front cabin
burst a horror, a nightmare concoction that was a personal favorite of the head
researchers of the Domonian laboratory. Its name was Gakham.

Before we continue to discuss Gakham and what happened to Seren, maybe you should
know a little bit about its history. For thousands of years both Domon and Damon had
been wielding magic, and before them their magic wielders. They both had created
unimaginable beings and abominations. But none had ever dared to do the most deadly of
all until the new Chief Scientist Eldien came on board. Using ancient runes discovered in
the ruins of a people called the “Citadel Knights”, and the magical power of the Comet,
the Chief Scientist had been able to open a gateway to another world temporarily. And
what he pulled out of that gateway could only be known as one thing. A demon. Out of
hell itself he had pulled a demon and given it a name, Gakham. Not a very big demon,
and not a very tough demon, but a demon nonetheless. He was an imp who stood about
four feet tall, with GReen scaly skin and fiery breath. He was your classic demon. He had
been caged in the factory for some time now, until the Chief heard of the butchery in the
mines. He knew that the Emperor was gone and could not handle Seren at the moment,
but certainly he thought, the imp could.

Gakham leapt from the ceiling and with his razor sharp claws, cleaved off the heads of
the guards surrounding Seren. Then he turned, positioned himself towards Seren, and
took a deep breath.




                                           25
2
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

With a screech, Gakham fell to the GRound. The few seconds he paused before blowing
fire in Seren’s face was too long for the elite guard. In a flash he appeared behind
Gakham, and taking his sword in hand, beheaded the creature. Seren picked up the head
by its horns, and turned it towards himself. Meanwhile, flames burst from the open
wound atop Gakham’s old body.

The creature spoke, “Chief knows about you. You will never make it into the castle
alive!”

Seren replied, “No creature, demon nor Domonian, will be able to stop me from entering
the Aqua Gate.”

“Hahaha. You are a fool. Now give me back my body!!!”

Seren opened a window to the railcar and tossed the head outside. It smacked off the rock
wall that sped past, and Seren could hear the echo of Gakham’s squeals in the distance.
Seren sighed as he saw a glimmer of light at the end of the tunnel, he was almost there.




                                           26
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

The Aqua Gate Revisited…

Seren decided he would get off at the prison stop and take that way into the courtyard.
The railcar came to a halt and he stepped out of the bloody railcar onto the nearby
platform. He made his way to the courtyard where ahead of him he could see the ancient
doors of the Aqua Gate. He made his way towards it, nodded to his fellow guards, and
then proceeded into the gateway.

The Aqua Tunnel was long and unsettling. As Seren proceeded he heard the moans of
lagoon monsters in the distance and the sound of water dripping through from the cracks
in the ceiling of the tunnel. He continued on, keeping his eyes open and staying vigilant
for the enemy. Soon, he found himself at the end of the tunnel and emerged into the old
docks. Then, before Seren stood one of the most ancient things in Domon. It was
something older than the castle itself.

It was called Damus’ mirror. It was a fountain that stood in the middle of the old docks.
According to legend, if one took a step into it, that person would enter a mirror world,
where one would appear as a ghost to all others. In this world, ghosts would appear as
living creatures. Typically this would not matter and would not help one in any way at
all, except for the fact that in the mirror world the effects of water did not exist. So the
portal was placed here, at the old docks, so that soldiers could enter the depths of the
ocean and not drown. Seren stepped into the fountain, but unfortunately nothing
happened. He tried dunking his head underwater, splashing about, and even meditating in
the fountain but to no avail.

Frustrated, he stepped out of the fountain and began walking back towards the Aqua
Gate. He would have to find some other way to get to the depths of the sea and into the
underwater crystal. However, as he stepped out of the fountain, he noticed something
rather peculiar. There was no water dripping off of him. He understood now why they
called it the mirror world. Because in fact, everything to him seemed as it should be. Just
like a mirror. He walked towards the beach and ducked his head underwater. Then, he
crossed his fingers and took a deep breath. He felt the air flow into his lungs and
chuckled to himself. Then he proceeded walking northward as a specter, along the
seabed, towards the GReat blue GReen depths of the ocean.




                                             27
2
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Underwater Crystal

Many things had been said about the Underwater Crystal. Some believed it was a
mausoleum for the ancient mech that it was built around, some believed it was some sort
of magical device, and some simply believed it was a way of sealing the mech. In fact, all
of them were correct. The last mech that was ever built had the potential of destroying the
entire world with a single spell. It caused terror among the Techno Knights, and in the
GReatest of all efforts, they were able to knock it out and seal it away beneath the sea.
The GReatest of the three Techno Knights had sealed it away. Seren soon found the
entrance of the Underwater Crystal, and guarding it was two of his old friends. And in the
center, someone almost as dangerous as the Emperor himself.

The danger had a name. And it was Tech Demital. According to the myths that swirl
around the black guard’s training area, his ancestors had elf blood that was the source of
his powers. Of course, these powers were so diminished from the diluting of the blood
that they were virtually nonexistent. That is, until Prime Minister Tech Demital decided
to coerce the Chief Scientist into creating a technology that would enhance his powers.
The Chief created a series of nanobots and injected them into Demital’s bloodstream. The
nanobots job was simple; they would harvest and farm the Elvin genes in his blood. Soon
Demital began to change.

What Tech Demital didn’t realize, was that the nanobots were multiplying like living
creatures and taking over his body and his mind. The nanobots were created with a drive
for blood and power. They began to replace his skin with metal, his mind, his organs,
everything with electronics and metal. He was turned into a cyborg and with natural skills
in magic, more powerful than any Techno knight, crystal thief, or Mech could be. But
that power came with a cost – his sanity. The nano bots were neutralized before they had
completely taken over, but Tech had still paid his cost.

The black guards recognized Seren immediately, even in his disguise, and so did Tech.
“What are you doing here traitor? You should have lived out the rest of your days
peacefully as a slave in the mines.”

“I have come to stop Blade from resurrecting this mech.”

“What does it matter if Domon gains the power in the world? Think about it, this entire
life is nothing but a power struggle. Kill yourself now while you have the chance,
because if I am to do it, I will GRant you no mercy.”

“I will do no such thing. Join me and help me stop the Emperor. Don’t you realize, if he
has the Mech cast that spell, it will mean the end of all of us, including you?”

“Haha. I will be protected, I do not know about your foolish friends here though. They
are expendable and should never have come on this mission with us.”



                                            28
                                                                                     2
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

The two black guards looked at each other. Seren signaled to them a message only the
black guards knew. It was time to take out an official. It was a sign of betrayal, only
allowed to be used in the case of a coup.

“Fine Demital, take your first shot.”

Tech Demital raised his hands into the air and they began to glow. His eyes closed and he
began to chant rhythmically. The water around him churned and took the form of a
funnel. Seren GRinned evilly. Tech had chosen the wrong type of attack. Damus’
mirror’s power was still in effect. The water would simply pass right through him. And it
did. The two black guards immediately seized Tech Demital, as he stood bewildered.

“What trickery is this?”

“Guards, hold him while I stop the Emperor…”

The black guards chained Demital with their enchanted shackles, and Seren made his way
into the Underwater Crystal.

The crystal was a beautiful work of magical art. It stood several stories high, all encasing
the Mech within. Around the Mech was a spiral staircase that leads to the very top where
its brain was encased. As soon as he entered the crystal, he could sense Blade’s presence
and he knew Blade could sense his. He had to hurry. He dashed up the staircase as fast as
possible. He could hear screams below. Demital had broken free and he was running out
of time. Up another staircase. And another. Around the corner. Then finally, there it was.
The main gallery, where the soul of the mech had been bound.

Before Seren stood the massive head of the mech. It took up almost the entire crystal
gallery and facing it was the damned Emperor Blade.

Blade turned to Seren with a GRin and spoke.
“I’ve been waiting for you. I want you to witness this…the fruits of your work.”

“Stop! You will destroy us all.”

“It is necessary to destroy this world, in order to unlock the sealed one beyond it. Prepare
yourself Seren, for you are about to see the end of this world as you know and love it.
Prepare for a world of ruin! That Techno knight you visited, he was one of the sealers of
this mech. As well as the Techno knight that was buried in the western mountain range. It
was his twin. I released that one on my own. And finally, I must tell you about the third
one. You see, the third one was unsealed over a decade ago by the Damonians. And that
Damonian who gave you his power on the beach, he was the one who unsealed it. So
now, all three of the sealers power has been united. It is time.”

“Nice speech. But I won’t let you – aggggh…”



                                             29
3
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]


Blade raised his right hand and Seren became encased in crystal, unable to speak or hear,
only able to see. Blade turned and raised his other hand.

“Awaken Omega! Free yourself from the Crystal. In the name of Michedron of the
Flame, Hedron of the Void, and Lichedron of the Water!”

A tiny noise could be heard in the distance. Then, a hairline crack appeared in the ceiling
of the Crystal tomb. In an instant, the crack had begun to GRow, bigger and bigger until
the entire crystal simply shattered. Blade, Seren, Demital, and the two dead guards
floated in the water surrounding the mech. The mech, who was now released in all of its
glory.

Omega stood 10 stories high. Its different pieces were eerily connected together by a
glowing glob of energy. The glob reminded Seren of ectoplasm or some other strange
energy goo. It opened its mechanical eyes, turned its head, and opened its mouth to speak
to Blade. In a deep, robotic voice it said,

“System recovery mode active. Rebooting system.”

Both Blade and Seren peered at each other, then at the mech. What could it be talking
about?

“Destroy this planet!!! Reveal the tower of Sore! Now you damned machine!”

“Reboot complete. Software version 1.0b. Please input command.”

Demital laughed heartily and vanished. He reappeared next to Blade.

“My dear Emperor, let me try, I have a way with machines. Omega, it is time. Command
input Red Death. Protection mode for the three living life forms in closest proximity,
please.”

Seren screamed, “No Omega. Go to sleep. Stop. Do anything other than cast that spell!”

“Too late, Red Death command submitted. Preparing for launch.”

The Mech squatted down, and then leapt out of the ocean. As it did a crystal casing
appeared around each of them. They were frozen, and could do nothing. They couldn’t
even see the Armageddon take place…

Omega flew high above the planet, glowing red with artificial rage. It opened its mouth,
and let out a horrifying scream. Along with the scream came a strange red radiation that
poured over everything. Everything began to die… Finally, the icecaps melted to the
point where the entire world was covered in oceans. There was no land to be found, and



                                            30
                                                                                       3
                                                                      [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

no living creatures on land had survived. That is, except for a tiny little island, with a tiny
thin little tower that shot up into the clouds. And beneath the sea, ancient creatures once
sealed had awoken, and the ancient civilizations of the Techno Knights had reappeared.




                                              31
3
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Samuel the Techno Knight

According to legend, there once were two mighty fortresses that stood in our world. The
first was a castle called Diligence. It was here that the powerful Techno Knights had their
home. The second was a decrepit old castle that had been built immediately after the
Comet had crashed by the last of humanity. This castle was known as Doom Castle, and
was impenetrable to every form of life and force of magic known. Within its halls there
were legends of gateways to other realms, and creatures that could tear apart the fabric of
our universe. It is probably a good thing it was never unsealed for in it stood the legacy
and GReatest secrets that mankind had ever had.

Seren awoke with a massive headache and a little confused. He was laying on the sea
floor, and nearby was a massive hole in the ocean floor. The emperor and his prime
minister could not be found anywhere, and even more confusing a strange wounded man
lay in the sand nearby.

Seren swam over to the man and examined him. He was about six foot two, heavily
armed with a rapier, a crossbow, two short swords and a dagger. On his side was a
canteen and a bag filled with strange gems. He wore silver chain mail, and had a plate
helm. He had a deep gash running down his side, it looked like a wound from a
broadsword. Also, it didn’t seem like he had much more time to live. Seren immediately
placed bandages on the wound, and cast a spell of healing. The wound closed and turned
into a long scar. The man opened his eyes and clutched his side.

“You…who are you? And why did you save me?”

“I am Seren. Who are you? Why are you down in this ocean? What is that crater from?
And how in the world did I survive?”

“I am Samuel. I am a Techno Knight.”

“What? I thought they were all sealed away or dead or something.”

“What do you mean? We aren’t sealed away or dead. We are in the middle of a war
against the evil sister cities of Damon and Domon.”

“If you insist.” Seren said sarcastically. “Do you mind telling me what that crater is
from?”

“That crater is…oh no…someone resurrected Soar.”

“Soar?”




                                             32
                                                                                       3
                                                                      [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

“It’s a tower that was built long ago by a mad race to control all life in this world. It’s
only been unlocked into its first stage. It has three stages, death, life, and domination.
Right now it is in death stage. It must have been awoken by some cataclysmic force-“

“Like a ten story mech?”

“Yes that would do it,” Samuel GRimaced.

“When it gets to the life stage it will resurrect any life that has ever lived on this
planet…”

“That doesn’t sound bad.”

“Yes, but that’s only so it can get to stage three. Domination. It will begin absorbing all
the life force on the planet until everything outside it is dead. It’s an engineered parasite.”

“How do we stop it?”

“You, my friend, don’t. Thanks for the help. I’m going to continue traveling south to
Diligence to recruit the Techno Knights there. We must reseal the tower.”

“I’m coming with. This whole situation wouldn’t have happened if it wasn’t for me.”

“Very well my friend. We leave immediately.”

Diligence

Still underwater, Seren and Samuel the Techno Knight traveled southwards towards the
Techno Knight’s home base, “Diligence.” But when they approached the castle, the gate
was shut, the portcullis was down, and it appeared to have no signs of life at all.

Those that know their history well may have inkling to what Diligence’s true significance
was. Long before the Domon’s took to the art of riding and breeding dragons, humans
had. And there was one dragon more powerful than all of the others. His name according
to legend was Bahamut. Bahamut was turned to stone by the Techno Knights and sealed
within the tower of Soar for even they feared his power should he rebel against them. It is
said that the first person Bahamut sees after being freed from stone can have any wish
GRanted by him.

Emperor Blade had heard of this legend and was certain that the easiest way to move the
tower from Stage 1 to Stage 2 (life), was to ask Bahamut to resurrect the old world as his
wish. But how would he free Bahamut from petrification? He had not quite figured this
out yet, which meant that Seren and Samuel still had time to figure out a plan.




                                               33
3
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Seren stood still, while Samuel chanted in front of the door to Diligence. Only a Techno
Knight would know the secret words and motions to open the gateway to their
stronghold. Suddenly, torches lit up all around the entranceway (using magical fire of
course, since they were underwater). The castle sprung to life, the portcullis rose, and the
main gate opened. But sadly, nothing but the castle was alive. Seren and Samuel entered
to find the fortress empty…except for the bodies of dead Techno Knights lying about.

“What happened here?” Samuel cried out.

“Looks like Blade got here first.”

“Who?’

Seren took the opportunity to explain to Samuel about his former master and his desire
for world domination. But how Blade and Demital had accomplished slaying a dozen
Techno Knights of the highest deGRee baffled him. But it didn’t baffle Samuel.

“If he did resurrect Omega, he probably has his power now as well. For a mech that can
cause Armageddon over an entire planet, its not hard to slay a few mortals.”

“What purpose would he have here though?”

“I don’t know. But whatever it is, it can’t be good.”

Standing tall, towering above the bodies laying across the floor of Diligence, stood a
statue of a knight donned in heavy plate armor, with an oversized axe in one hand and an
oversized broadsword in the other. The King of Diligence, Lord of the Techno Knights
stood before them, frozen in stone.

“Guess they weren’t able to kill him! Ha ha,” exclaimed Samuel.

“I thought it was just a statue,” replied Seren
“That is the one known as Legend. He is our King. And it appears, he is still alive.”

Samuel lowered his head and bowed. As did Seren. Then the two of them looked up and
watched as the cold GRey GRanite statue slowly began to release a warm glow. The
GRanite turned to flesh and armor and the face of Legend was looking down upon them.

“Rise,” it spoke.

“My liege, what happened?”

“We were slaughtered by two men wielding powers I have never before seen. One carried
a GReat sword which fed on blood and the other wielded Elven powers with a strange
technology that is far more advanced than anything we have ever devised.”



                                             34
                                                                                   3
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


“What did they wa-. Oh no! The Bahamut engine!” Samuel panicked. They all ran as
quickly as possible into the Life Engineering Research Lab but it was too late. The engine
was gone. The Bahamut engine, a piece of electronics able to transform anything from
stone to life and vice versa. The same technology was used by Legend while they were
attacking, to preserve his own life. They had taken the Bahamut Engine to Soar to free its
namesake.

The three of them stood emotionless in the Life Engineering Research Lab completely
void of any idea of how to stop Blade. It was too late. They had lost…the only way to
stop him was to destroy the tower itself. And that, that is what had to be done.

A GReen aura began to pour into the room.

“He made his wish…get ready everyone, after this we must find each other again. We
will meet at the entrance of the Doom Castle. Be careful, this is going to be a wild
ride…” Legend spoke.

The GReen glow intensified, and then blackness.




                                            35
3
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Magic of the Ancient World

Seren awoke, alone, on a beach. Again. The coastal breeze swept through his hair and as
he looked behind him, there were mountains as far as the eye could see. To the north of
him, massive glaciers moved like giants through the sea. And high up in the southern
hills, a GReat keep stood. And he recognized the keep from the history books. This one
he knew. It was castle Domon, as it stood, over five hundred years ago. No symbiotic
armor plated walls, no factory. Only magicians, dragons, and a bloodthirsty ruler named
Blade ready to try and conquer the world. He was sure that further north the castle of
Damon certainly existed, along with the city of Glaw, and that he would find no
assistance there. For now, he was siding with the enemy of both of them. Humanity. And
in the further distance buried deep within the mountains and piercing the sky like a
needle, stood Soar, officially in Stage 2.

Seren did not know what needed to be done for Soar to enter Stage 3, but he knew it
could not be allowed.




                                           36
                                                                                    3
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

Interlude

Somewhere deep in the depths of the northern glaciers, a tortured voice cries out.
Uncertain of itself whether it is man or beast.

High up in the parapets of Domon Castle, Blade smiles cheerily. He is happy to know
that his plan has come to fruition. Now for the next stage he thinks to himself. “How in
all of the gods name’s will I be able to activate the final stage…?”

A knock on the door. Enter, Tech Demital.

“Blade, I know what you have been scheming, but do you actually dare go to that
island?”

“Yes, but first we must take care of some loose ends. Mainly, the executioner and his two
knight friends. They are certainly scattered apart right now, but should they meet
together, we could run into problems.”

“I will handle them. Why don’t you prepare the scouts for the Island of the Mystics?”

The Island of the Mystics lay far to the south of the main continent, beyond the high tech
underwater city of techno knights and even further beyond their capital, Diligence. Which
brings up another point that Blade had not quite taken care of. By resurrecting all the life
on the planet, he had also resurrected all of his own enemies. For example, the Techno
Knights who now stood plotting beneath the tides preparing to finish their ultimate goal
of sealing away all of the magic in the world.

Activating the final stage would not be an easy task. Blade planned to journey to the
Island of the Mystics. An island filled with bizarre mutants and inhabited by the old ones,
it was the source of all the magic on the surface of the world. When the comet had struck,
two large pieces of it had splintered off. The ancients worshipped these shards and carved
them into two statues of ancient beings, Uriel and Raphael. According to legend, anyone
who stood between the two statues would be GRanted a wish. Blade already knew what
he wanted for his wish. The final stage of Sore activated. It would be limitless power, all
of the life force of an entire planet placed directly under his fingertips. No being could
ever GRant him that much power directly, be it Bahamut or even the source of all magic!
But they could GRant him the means to it. By activating the tower, he could finally
complete his task.




                                            37
3
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Doom Castle

Seren had been traveling for some time now from village to village, searching for the
whereabouts of this ‘Doom Castle’ he was supposed to meet at. He also didn’t like the
name of the place at all. After visiting a small village south of Glaw, nestled deep in the
mountains, an elder gave him a clue as to its location. Doom Castle is stuck between
worlds he said. It never stays in one spot, some days it will appear in the valley south of
Glaw; sometimes it appears in the mountain ranges north of Domon. But it is always in
between Domon and Damon, striking fear into both nations. That same day, some
villagers had reported seeing a large castle hidden in what used to be a nearby forest.
Seren left immediately to check it out.

When he arrived, Seren discovered that curiously enough, Doom Castle had neither
entrance nor exit. “What trickery is this?” he thought to himself. “How was he to meet
the others at the entrance to a castle with no entrance??”

He sat for a while, and then finally decided to take a second look around. When he did,
he noticed to figures appear out of the shadow of the castle. They motioned quietly for
him to follow them. He stepped into the shadow of the castle and suddenly felt butterflies
in his stomach. He had a sinking feeling and then everything around him turned black and
white. The castle walls had disappeared and he saw the interior of the castle where the
walls had once been. He continued walking until he reached the inside of the castle. As
soon as he stepped on the tile floor of the main banquet hall, everything snapped back
into color and he soon found himself sealed within the castle.

“Welcome to our new base of operations Seren. This is Doom Castle.”

“Yeah. How do I get the hell out of here?”

“You already have the enchantment on you. Whenever you step into a shadow projected
by Doom Castle, you will enter another mirror world. In this mirror world, the powers of
Earth do not apply. That is, you can do things such as walk through walls. This spell is
the only way to enter or exit the castle,” Legend explained.

“Time is short. We must destroy the four energy roots that bind Soar to this world. Seren,
in your world, there were four islands, each manifestation of the elements, each with
energy orb that sealed away Soar’s roots. Soar’s roots are what holds it bound to this
world. In this world, those pieces of land and the roots still exist, except they are
conveniently connected to the main continent. Each corner of this continent holds an
elemental root. Fire, Wind, Earth, and Water. To the northeast the continent stretches into
the glacier region where the water root is located. To the southeast, there is a desert
wasteland where the wind root is located. To the southwest lay the GReat forest, where
the earth root can be found guarded by the forest elves. And to the northwest lay the ever-
flame fields, where the fire root is held. As we are closest to the glaciers, we will travel



                                             38
                                                                                   3
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

there first. We must go as a GRoup, for only Legend knows the exact location of all the
roots,” Samuel explained.


The GRoup raided the armory of Doom Castle for equipment and set out towards the
northeast glacier. According to Legend, there was tunnel that connected the mountain
range to the northeast and the elemental shrine that held the water root. They proceeded
towards those mountains, not sure of what would come to pass.




                                           39
4
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Darkhum’s Cave

Seren, Legend, and Samuel had been hiking for almost a week when they reached
Darkhum’s cave. Supplies were getting short and so were tempers. The mouth of the cave
was foreboding and reeked of blood and rotting flesh. The undead were numerous here
and nobody was sure why. All of the towns and villages were dozens of miles away;
there wasn’t a live person to be seen for days. The three continued slaying the foul
creatures as they came at them, one after the other, until they eventually reached an
impasse. The cavern’s main path ended with a GReat hole in the GRound. Once there had
been a rope bridge it seemed, but that had rotted away decades ago. Now, there was
nothing but a bottomless pit.

Seren, Legend, and Samuel held their GRound as more creatures of the damned
wandered out of the cave from behind them. They didn’t like the idea of being hacked
away at, and had risen up again after being slashed apart. And they had come in a pack.

“We have to find whatever is animating these things and stop it,” said Seren.

“No, we need to find a way across. Legend, don’t you know any spells that will help?”
said Samuel.

“I don’t. Hold them back, I have an idea.” replied Legend.

Legend took his axe and tossed it into the ravine. As he did so, he spoke a few quick
words and as he did so, the axe lit up and burst into flames. A demonic figure came into
view, tall and transparent. It held its claw-like hands on the edges of the precipice with an
evil GRin.

“I am the lord of this cavern, the lich Mestaph,” it spoke.

“That is what is animating those things. And unlucky for us, it’s a lich. It is the worst
undead to have to save ourselves from.”

Mestaph roared with laughter, “Hm ha ha. Darkhum, take care of these for me. You can
feed on the puny one, but leave the two in armor for me. I want them as personal guards.”

An enormous bat broke its camouflage and descended upon them. As it neared the
GRound, it began to change shape to reveal its identity. It hissed in delight and began to
speak.

“Yes… I am Darkhum, and this is my home you are in. Which means only one thing, you
want to be dessert for me and my undead companions.”




                                             40
                                                                                     4
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

By now the lich had disappeared. Seren had already set his mind on one thing; he was not
puny and was not going to be turned into bat food. Samuel and Legend raised their
weapons and began to approach the creature. Meanwhile, Seren had other plans.

Seren slipped away from the GRoup of combatants. He was determined to break the
lich’s spell. But first he had to find the source of the enchantment. He had already
decided that the source of it must be in the pit. So as the two techno knights took care of
the vampire, Seren descended the steep edge of the precipice, in search of a bottom.

Legends oversized axe came crashing down upon Darkhum, and it squealed in pain like it
was rodent that had just been trampled upon. Then, the two knights approached it while it
stood clutching its head and began to cast a spell.

Darkhum looked up and said, “What are you doing? What are you chanting?”

Legend and Samuel replied simultaneously, “Rite of Sealing.”

Darkhum cried, “No, I don’t want to be sealed away! I want to live and feed! No! Please,
I can help you”.

Legend and Samuel stopped the spell and Darkhum stood up.

“You need to get across this cavern, right? I know when I am defeated. Let me join you, I
will fly you across the cavern so you can enter the glacier shrine.”

The two knights aGReed and then stopped and wondered to where Seren had wandered.
As this conversation was going on, Seren had made his way halfway down into the
chasm. Below he could see candlelight, an altar, and a shadowy figure. It was the lich
Mestaph.

Darkhum had transformed again into a giant bat and was carrying Legend and Samuel as
he flew around the cavern. He spotted Seren hanging off the edge of the embankment and
flew down to aid. As he did so, the lich sensed their presence.

Mestaph tossed spell after spell towards the party of four. Balls of lightning, fire, and ice
sped towards them, but all were dissolved by Darkhum’s magic. He had learned much
from the lich lord. Seren leapt off of Darkhum’s back and engaged Mestaph in hand-to-
hand combat. Meanwhile Legend and Samuel prepared for the rite of sealing. It would be
the only magic that could stop Mestaph.

In a bright flash of light it happened. The cave shook and the undead collapsed into
motionless piles of flesh. A GReat blue glyph covered the floor beneath Mestaph as he
slowly was bound to crystal. Mestaph screamed and cursed them and then finally all was
quiet. In front of Seren and Darkhum stood a tall crystal with a frozen old man within.
Legend and Samuel both fell to their knees in exhaustion.



                                             41
4
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


Although the techno knights could seal almost anything with their powers, it took a lot
out of them. The techno knights that sealed away the Omega mech were weakened so
much, they almost died on the spot. That is one reason why a special machine had to be
used to seal Bahamut. The Bahamut engine could magnify the knight’s power beyond
their wildest dreams. They were able to seal away the king of the dragons with it. They
also were able to use it to seal away Soar. Of course they couldn’t do that one all at once.
First each of the roots were sealed into orbs, and then when the tower went to 0 stage it
was sealed away for good.

Samuel and Legend both explained to Seren that they would be too exhausted to make it
into the glacier shrine now. It was up to him and Darkhum to destroy the water root. They
would remain in the cavern until they returned. Seren jumped on Darkhum’s back and
they took flight. Through the rest of the cavern and out into the glaciers they went.

Northeast Glaciers and the Glacier Shrine

The sun was rising when the two had reached the northeast glaciers. Darkhum worried as
the first beams of light struck the glass like ice of the glaciers and mirrored onto his flesh.
“Just a bit brighter and that would have been painful”, he thought. Darkhum said goodbye
to Seren and made his way back to the cavern. Seren would have to go it alone.

It is said that a long time ago, before the nations of Damon and Domon, before the tower
Soar was constructed, there lived a race of mermaids in the northeast. Nobody knows the
truth of this legend, however some say that creatures like elves and nymphs and
mermaids used to guard holy places such as these.

Seren walked through the glacier fields, observing the frozen fish and creatures of the sea
in the ice around him. Up ahead were two serpentine pillars, and between them the path
curved up into a blizzard. Seren continued walking, but soon could no longer see. He kept
on going, determined to stop his former master from any terrible plots he might have in
mind for the world. Finally, the storm broke. And in front of him was a frozen—

Mermaid. It sat frozen like a statue, guarding the shrine entrance. Seren was certain for a
second it was alive, but touched it and it was as solid as stone. He kept going, and when
he entered the building there were more of them, everywhere. All frozen, all of them in
guarded positions. “They chose freezing to death over abandoning their posts…” Seren
thought to himself.

And there it was. At the end of the hall hovered a black cloud and descending from the
cloud was the most peculiar of all things. It looked like a giant tree root, except it was
made of ice and buzzed with magical energy. Seren lowered his sword upon the root.

“Klank”.



                                              42
                                                                                    4
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Nothing. The root stood solid as ever. “Too bad they didn’t tell me how to destroy this
thing,” he thought to himself. Then it dawned on him.

“If this is made of ice, I’ll take some fire to it.”

Seren let out his best fire spell. The fireball rushed towards the root. The icy root
vanished in a puff of steam. The black cloud dispersed. And a drop of water hit Seren on
the crown of the head.

The drop of water was followed by another drop. Then another. Then suddenly the
ceiling broke loose. Water gushed down upon him. He looked up and watched as the icy
pillars of the shrine began to melt away to nothing. Seren ran outside as quickly as
possible. Outside the situation was the same. The glaciers were melting. By destroying
the water root he had also broken the spell on the ocean.

The mermaids had awoken and begun to move and did not look at all pleased. The
blizzard had ceased, and Seren saw, to his dismay, that the path back to the caverns was
no more – it had all melted away into the ocean. “This could very well be the end”, he
thought. Around him everything melted. The mermaids ignored his plea, and soon he was
left floating upon a single piece of ice out in the sea. Then the ice melted and Seren fell
into the deep.




                                                43
4
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Ruins of Kal’Matik

Seren awoke to an unusual site. Lying next to him, sunning herself, was a perfectly
healthy mermaid. That wasn’t the only surprising thing. The only thing one could see
beyond the beach was sand. Seren and this creature were on the edge of the desert!

“Did you save me?” he asked.

“Yes! Thanks, it’s the least I could do for you freeing me from that icy prison” replied the
mermaid.

“It wasn’t intentional, but you are welcome. What’s your name?”

“My name is Felicia. And you are probably wondering where we are. Well, this is the
southeastern desert. The current carried us here. Let me tell you a little bit about this
place…”

The southeastern desert was the wasteland ruin of a GReater civilization, one, which had
destroyed itself shortly after the comet, arrived. In its very center was the desert city of
Kal’Matik, which housed the Shrine of the Wind Root. It was there that Felicia and Seren
had begun their travels.

Felicia, despite her mermaid nature, was able to survive the dry desert life thanks to an
enchanted necklace that had been given to her by her mother before she passed away. The
necklace contained a small fragment of stone that cast off an eerie GReen glow in the
darkness.

Felicia and Seren had been traveling for days through the desert until finally they reached
the desert ruins of Kal’Matik. The parapets of the lost civilization’s capital kissed the sky.
The sands of the GReat desert had swallowed most of the city, but here and there one
could see what appeared to be metallic dome-shaped homes, where the residents of
Kal’Matik once lived. Felicia and Seren made there way to the center of the city, where
they found the holy shrine of the wind root.

The shrine stood upon solid rock GRound, where the powerful elemental winds had
blown the sands clear from the earth. It towered high into the sky, stories upon stories
beyond the clouds of the lower atmosphere. Felicia and Seren entered the shrine only to
find a single room with an elevator.

“I guess we take this,” said Felicia.

“It doesn’t seem very safe. Isn’t there another way?” asked Seren.

“I don’t think so. Let’s look to see if we can find a power source.”



                                             44
                                                                                      4
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

Unfortunately the lift was powerless. The generators it was tied to had long been non-
operational, filled up with sand from the unforgiving desert. Felicia tore open the power
panel and examined the circuitry.

“We will need to turn on the back up generators if we plan on going up there. There is a
basement access shaft to the right of the elevator. ”

The two adventurers slipped down the basement access shaft into the Subterranean City,
the underGRound part of the city of Kal’Matik.

The basement shaft opened out into a vast cavern. Sand trickled through the cracks in the
cavern ceiling and lightly dusted the automobiles and skyscrapers of Kal’Matik. It was
once the capital human city of this country. In the distance stood the nuclear power plant
of Kal’Matik. And a few feet away the entrance to the backup generators for the shrine.

“We have to be careful down here. Who knows what is living in these caves!”

“Understood,” said Seren.

Felicia began to fiddle away with the backup generator control panels as Seren kept
watch. After a few minutes she had everything worked out, and the power began to flow.

“Good job. Let’s get the hell out of here.” Seren said.
But he had spoken too late. Two creatures, reeking of death, hobbled towards them. They
were undead, residents of Kal’Matik doomed to eternal life in shredded bodies, cursed by
some unknown force. Seren unsheathed his sword and beheaded the two zombies. But
there were more to come.

Seren cried out, “Damn power generator must have been cursed! Come on, let’s go!”

Seren and Felicia ran to the shaft to the surface. The creatures were GRowing in
numbers. Seren removed the skulls from a few more of the zombies before they finally
reached the surface, where Felicia and him sealed off the entrance with a small explosion.

The power was operational now for the elevator. The two took it to the top. As they
ascended the tower they could see the entire desert stretch out before them. They also
could see the entire city of Kal’Matik. What was most peculiar however is Seren sworn
he could see movement among the rocks that bordered the city.

They were high above the earth now, and could see the tops of clouds out of the windows
of the elevator. The elevator completed its ascent, shooting through the sky at an absurd
rate. Rising out of the shrine stood an organic mass of vines and tendrils. It rose to the top
of the high ceiling within. Felicia identified it as the wind root.




                                             45
4
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

As Seren approached the wind root, several figures rose out of the walls of the shrine.
They discarded camouflaged cloaks and identified themselves,

“We are sand elves, keepers of the wind root. What business do you have here?”

“Seren, run!” Felicia exclaimed. The sand elves closed in on him as he plunged his sword
deep within the heart of the wind root.

The elves collapsed into piles of dust as the wind root screeched in pain. It GRew to a
dark hunter GReen, then shriveled up and dissolved. Seren heard a loud crash in the
distance and then felt the tower begin to sway from side to side. The elevator shaft
collapsed into the sands below. The entire city was being sucked into a whirlpool and
Seren, Felicia, and the Shrine of the Wind Root were next.

Just as Seren and Felicia were certain of their demise, a giant bat appeared in the sky
before them along with two very smug techno knights riding on its back.

“We’ve been looking everywhere for you. Hop on!” Legend said. Two smaller giant bats
flew over to Seren and Felicia and they mounted them and made a very narrow escape
from the collapsing Shrine of the Wind Root. They hovered in the sky for a short time,
watching the GReat ancient city of Kal’Matik being sucked up into the sands forever.

“We’ve destroyed two of the roots. That means two more to go, the Earth Root and the
Fire Root,” said Samuel.

“Our next destination is the land of fire, to the northwest. It is believed that beneath the
surface is a shrine that holds a substantial fragment of the comet, and that is the source of
the never ending flames that engulf the land.”

The party of four traveled through the skies, with little knowledge of the fact that
Emperor Blade had been fulfilling his plans as well.




                                             46
                                                                                    4
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

The Fragment of Sin

The bat transport landed at the center of the northwest peninsula, at the entrance to the
underGRound Shrine of the Fire Root. The GRoup entered the underGRound passage,
only to their surprise to find that it opened up into a village. Humans lived here, real
living untainted, unmated humans! Seren was thrilled. The people of the village told
Seren that they chose this place for two reasons; first and foremost, the never-ending
flames on the surface protected them from those who would want pure humanity dead.
Second of all, they sought to protect the true cause of the flames. Within the scalding
Shrine of the Fire Root also lay another prize: a fragment of the comet guarded by two
human shamans who called themselves “Keepers.”

“We could use that shard of the comet to help us in the war against Blade,” said Felicia.

“How are we to get it? The humans seem pretty determined to keep it,” said Legend.

“We take it,” said Felicia.

“You mean steal it?” said Seren.

“If we have to choose between power saved and power used to save, which is the better
choice?” said Samuel.

“AGReed. We take it,” said Felicia.

The plan was to take it by force. The humans obviously had no knowledge of magic and
would easily fall to the power of the four. The party made their way to the shrine. As they
traveled through the village they heard rumors of the fragment of the comet’s location.
Apparently when the fire root had been created, it was GRown around the fragment to
protect it from those who would try to take it.

The party arrived at the Shrine of the Fire Root soon after. Carved into the cave wall was
the entrance to the shrine. The shrine stood stories high and two men in cloaks guarded
its gate. It appeared these were the Keepers, the guardians of the shrine.

“Who are you and what business do you have at the Shrine of the Holy Fire Root?” they
said in unison.

The Keepers were taller than most humans and were mostly hidden behind their GRey
cloaks. In the hand of each man was a glove with a small jewel embedded – likely to be
fragments of the comet. This worried Seren as he was the first to notice it and he
whispered a word of warning to Samuel. But it was too late. Legend had drawn his sword
and approached the Keepers.

“Allow us entry or not, we will enter regardless. We are here to destroy the fire root.”


                                            47
4
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]


The Keeper to the left raised his hand into the air and a GReen glow began radiate from
it. Seren was right, he could sense the energy of the comet as it began its release from
their hands. Samuel and Legend both pointed their weapons and charged into combat.

The two Keepers placed their palms on each respective techno knight and they collapsed
into a deep sleep. The men approached Seren and Felicia. Felicia was readying a spell
and unable to stop the curse from being applied. Only Seren and the Keepers remained
conscious.

Seren was ready to flee. He knew that he had always been immune to the radiation from
the Comet; it was that fact that had allowed him wears the symbiotic armor without
succumbing to sickness and death. But he had never experienced this potent of a dosage.
It was too late for his escape however. One of the Keepers GRabbed him from behind
and placed the jewel at the back of Seren’s neck.

Nobody knows exactly what happened next. The Keeper that survived later on would say
that Seren simply vanished from their GRasp. And what arrived to replace him was
something like terror embodied in the form of a living creature.

He appeared out of thin air and moved faster than a bolt of lightning descending from the
sky. He wore blood red armor and his hair was in long yellow dreds that ran down his
shoulders. In his hand he held a jet-black scimitar and his eyes glowed with the eerie
GReen glow that was the signature of the Comet. He slipped behind the first Keeper in an
instant, and in that very same instant the body of the shaman crumpled to the GRound.
The second Keeper escaped, running faster than he had ever run before.

Only Seren knew the demon-man called M. He had been following Seren for some time
now, helping him when he was in the most difficult of situations. M proceeded into the
Shrine of the Fire Root and with a single swing of his scimitar sliced the fire root in half.
The two halves of the root fell to the GRound to reveal the ancient shard of the comet
within.

“You! I don’t know who you are but we need that shard,” said Samuel.

M turned to face Samuel and Legend, who were now conscious.

“I am the spirit of the next millennium, M, the time when all life will cease to exist on
this planet. I am the ruined earth. I am the scorched land. I am the brittle forest. I am a
drunken ocean. Take the shard of sin. You will need it to stop the Emperor from
resurrecting Tir”

With this, M vanished into thin air. Outside Seren and Felicia moaned in pain as they
gained consciousness and awoke with a very bad headache. Samuel handed the Shard of




                                              48
                                                                                     4
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

Sin to Seren. The party of four left the fiery peninsula soon after that, and prepared to
make their way to the last root: the earth root.




                                             49
5
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Southwest Penninsula

With the shard removed from the shrine, the fires in the northwest peninsula had
magically ceased. However, the evil glow of the shard of sin followed them throughout
the night as they made their way south to the peninsula. There they would find the place
known as Deep Forest, an endless maze of trees and vegetation covering the entire
southwest corner of the continent.

After a long, uneventful journey, Seren and his companions arrived at the entrance to
Deep Forest and cautiously entered.

“Seren we may have a problem destroying this last root,” Felicia said as they slowly
made their way through briar patch after briar patch.

“Why?”

“Well according to legend it is sealed within a sacred tree in the very center of the forest.
It is called the World Tree and the creatures of the forest would not take kindly to us
killing this tree.”, she explained.

“The creatures of the forest? What’s the worst they could do??”

Just as Seren spoke those words, he heard a rustling in the distance. “What was that?
What kinds of creatures live in this forest anyway?”

Little did Seren know, the creatures that lived in this forest were very old. They were
almost as old as the very earth they stood upon.

For centuries the spirits of the earth had hidden themselves in the shadows. Deep within
the forests the Night Elves had lived. Deep blue skinned, dark eyed, and long eared. They
revered the forces of Earth. And they would do anything to protect it. Now as the four of
them made their way through the forest, the Night Elves were watching and waiting to
make their move. Through their immortality they had earned GReat wisdom and they
knew what Seren and his companions had come for. They wanted to destroy the tower
their ancestors had created. And there was only one way they could go about doing that.

Seren and his companions reached an end to their path. Around them stood nothing but
unforgiving thorn bushes and trees so high that their canopies intermixed with the clouds
in the heavens. It was getting late and darkness was setting in. They decided to make
camp.

Seren and the others awoke from their peaceful sleep to find that they had been bound,
gagged, and moved to an unfamiliar location. They were in the heart of a strange village.
Felicia loosened and spit out the cloth gagging her to tell Seren that it was the Night Elf
village.


                                             50
                                                                                   5
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 1


“Do not struggle. We shall not harm you. We simply wish for you to abandon your quest
to harm the World Tree. If you do, we will transport you to the outside of the forest
where we will let you live out the rest of your lives in peace.”

An older elf, most likely some sort of priest, had appeared before them and was speaking
to them telepathically.

“What do we do now?” Seren asked.

“We must destroy that tree..” Legend replied.

As they discussed their options, in the distance the Night Elves had begun to scramble. A
roaring overhead could be heard and even the old priest had become distracted by it.

Suddenly, a tongue of flame burst through the canopy and ignited the houses closest to it.
Several priests looked above, and let loose bright blue bolts of plasma into the sky.

“What is going on? You must free us!” Seren commanded.

The old priest unbound the prisoners and then joined in on the battle. High in the sky
above the canopy the source of the flames could be seen. A Domonian airship was
attacking the village. The Emperor had made a special trip, just to see his number one
assassin, one more time before he conquered the world. And with three of the four roots
gone, the Emperor couldn’t afford to leave Seren to his own business.

Dragons burst through the canopy and towards the Night Elves. In a fury of blue and
yellow flame, the battle commenced. Seren, Legend, Samuel, Felicia, and Darkhum fled
into the Shrine of the World Tree.

Inside the trunk rose the Earth Root, bound and intertwined with the roots of the sacred
tree. Seren stepped towards it, prepared to cast a spell, and inexplicably found that he
could not move another inch. The rest of the GRoup tried to move, and found they could
move nothing. And then…
“I have let you go far too long. You honestly think you can stop me from activating the
final phase of Soar Seren?”, the voice echoed throughout.

“Why don’t you just kill me now?” Seren replied.

“My lord. Why DON’T you just kill him?” spoke the voice of Demital.

“He is far too valuable alive. Men, bind him and take him aboard. Torch those blue
weaklings outside. Except for the women, bring them to the castle along with these
idiots.”




                                            51
5
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]




Domon Dungeons

When Seren awoke, he found himself alone in a dingy, earthen floor cell. Across from
him, in another cell, a somber night elf woman sat.

“What do you know of the artifact you wish to destroy??” she rose her head and asked.

“Artifact? Its more like a weapon! It can enslave this entire planet. I must stop it from
being resurrected,” Seren replied.

“Let me tell you a little bit about the history of our people, and the tower called Soar…:”

The night elf’s name was Symphona. She said that long ago her people were united as
one faction. But there was a war, a GReat war, but a hidden war among elves. Her people
split into Light Elves and Shadow Elves. The Shadow Elves constructed a powerful
weapon, the tower Sore, which required all of the life force of the planet to operate. The
Shadow Elves were destroyed in the war and had all but gone extinct, and all that
remained were different factions of the Light Elves. Some of them lived in the desert,
some deep within the earth, some in the mountains, and some even in the forests. Their
race had become fragmented. The Night Elves were direct descendents of the Light
Elves.

The Shadow Elves, as a final curse against the Light Elves, had GRown one of the life
force roots, the ones that bind Sore to this world, directly in the roots of one of the night
elves most sacred tree.

As Symphona was explaining Seren felt something attack the pit of his stomach. It was a
feeling of dread as he recalled the night before. He interrupted her saying,

“You know, I have nightmares. They aren’t your typical nightmares. I have some dreams
where we die. Where we all die. Where we have failed. Where the world capsizes,
collapses upon itself and there is nothing left but empty cold space.”

“I sense something different about you Seren. You aren’t like those who travel with you.
Do you have these dreams a lot?”

“Yes. Sometimes I have dreams that a GReat horned demon is looking over us with a wry
smile upon his face. He is big. He is bigger than this continent, bigger than this planet.
And powerful too. So strong he could swallow our world whole. But there is something
keeping him back, something even more powerful. I don’t understand it, but the dream
never seems to end. When I go to sleep at night it is there again, and the next night, and
the next night.”



                                              52
                                                                                  5
                                                                 [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

“Is this why you are so dedicated to destroying our tower?”

“Yes. Somehow they are connected. I get the same feeling of dread when I look at your
tower in the distance. There is something wrong with this world. Something isn’t as it
should be.”

“Why did he want to take the women prisoner? What is he going to do to me?”

“Don’t ask…”

The two sat in silence as the day dwindled into the night.

“Wake up elf girl. Emperor Blade requests a special audience with you.”

The two black guards laughed and elbowed each other. Symphona lowered her head and
stared at the floor as the guard on the right opened the cell door.

“No! Leave her be!” Seren screamed at the guards. The guard to the left unsheathed his
sword and jabbed it towards Seren.

“Silence maggot! Blade will deal with you and your soul later...” The guard laughed
menacingly and then quickly taking his dagger, jabbed it into Seren’s left leg.

Seren lowered his head in turn as the rage inside him boiled up from within. His eyes
turned blood red and the Shard of Sin, which was cast aside in the corner with his sword
and armor, began to glow its eerie GReen.

Seren’s eyes were set dead upon the two guards. He could see deep within their chests, at
their hearts, and watched as the blood pumped from vessel to vessel faster and faster.

“What are you doing? Don’t do this! It’s not worth taking a life!” Symphona cried.

The veins of the guards began to bulge and their skin bubbled. The guard with the dagger
shrieked in vane. It was too late. In an explosion of blood and flesh, the remains of the
two guards fell to the GRound. The glow of the Shard of Sin faded and Seren collapsed in
his cell.
When Seren came to, he was being carried on the back of Legend through the prison of
the Castle of Domon.

“Ugh…what happened?”

“Well...we don’t know exactly. According to this elf here, you reduced two elite black
guards to piles of blood and bone using the Shard of Sin. Is there something you need to
tell us?” replied Samuel.




                                            53
5
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“No...I don’t even remember. As long as I can remember – that is when I was GRowing
up in Domon sometimes I would have fits of rage and then wouldn’t remember what I did
afterwards. But nothing like this has ever happened.” Seren said.

The Shard of Sin had amplified something dormant in Seren. It had brought out
something buried deep within. Something that lived in the GRey area, the border between
good and evil. Something more powerful than what he could handle.

“I think I can move on my own now. Where are we running to?” asked Seren.

“The Emperor is in the castle. I overheard some of the guards talking. He has discovered
the mech within.” Legend said.

“There isn’t a mech within Domon! I lived here almost my whole life and never heard of
such a thing.”

“I’m sorry Seren. We couldn’t tell you about it for fear that you might be captured again
by Blade. The Emperor’s Tower was built around it. It isn’t as big as the Omega Mech
but its enough to resurrect Mrobid.” Legend said.

“What is a Mrobid?”

Symphona GRew expressionless. “It is the City of the Damned. The minds of the
creatures who could not be resurrected because their souls have been siphoned away by
others go to a place in another world. A city called Mrobid. When Sore is in full phase it
combines the powers of Mrobid with its own so that it has all of the life force of the
planet. Without Mrobid, Sore cannot be activated. The Emperor didn’t know this until
now, so he must hurry and pull out all of the stops before we stop HIM. That’s why he is
destroying his own castle to resurrect Mrobid and that’s why he is heading to the Island
of the Mystics afterward.”

Symphona explained the legend of the Island of the Mystics. An island housing all sorts
of bizarre mutations and strange creatures, and most importantly of all, two of the largest
shards of the comet Wormwood that still exist.

Legend, Samuel, Felicia, Darkhum, Symphona, and of course Seren raced down the
stairway of the Slave Tower. Seren remembered that he knew of an underGRound
passageway that led from the Slave Tower to the Emperor’s Tower and it would be the
only way to get past the many sentries keeping watch over the Royal Causeway.

They reached the passageway that Seren spoke of and found it unguarded. As they crept
along the narrow tunnel they could hear the screams of the slaves being whipped and
tortured above. A personal favorite punishment of the Domonian slave masters was
placing a searing hot iron on the scalps of the slaves. Those who were branded were




                                            54
                                                                                      5
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

treated as outcasts for the rest of their short lives. The tunnel opened into a broad hallway
and sleeping before them rested a hefty – actually morbidly obese - dragon.

“I thought you said this way was safer?” GRumbled Felicia under her breath.

“I have never seen that thing before in my life!” whispered Seren.

They made their way through the room as softly as possible, when of course, somebody
stepped on a stray bone. The crunching sound awoke the dragon, with its very powerful
well-exercised jaws.

Samuel held tight to his rapier, as Legend put his axe forward and Seren unsheathed his
sword. Felicia prepared the best of her spells, as Symphona chanted and Darkhum’s
beady eyes burned.

The dragon lashed out, its claws narrowly missing Samuel. Legend leapt into the air and
dealt a crushing blow to the dragons leg. The axe bounced off the steel scales and flew
into the corner of the room, far out of reach. Symphona and Felicia combined their
powers, sending a thunderous bolt of plasma into the skull of the dragon. The Shard of
Sin began to glow in Seren’s bag. He closed the knapsack and tossed it into the corner.
He knew he was not ready for that kind of power again.

Felicia extinguished the flame breath of the dragon with a flood of water and then
Symphona ingeniously froze the water. The mouth and nose of the dragon was frozen
solid with ice and it struggled to breathe. Samuel and Legend both struck their weapons
deep into the bare breast of the dragon. It reeled back and then collapsed to the stone
floor.

Their celebration was cut short however. The walls of the tunnel began to bow and the
body of the dragon began to melt away. What was left was the body of a tall man dressed
in armor, with a bow in hand. His chest struggled to rise and fall as he spoke and said,

“My king, I am glad I have found you. I am your servant Seraphael. I discovered this
passage long ago in our raid on Domon, only to be transformed into that miserable beast
by the Emperor for his amusement.”

“I am sorry, we didn’t know. You are severely wounded. We must find a healer for you.”
Samuel said.

“No. It is too late for me. Take my power as my gift…goodbye.”

In a fury of light and fire, the body of Seraphael vanished, and a crystal took its place.

“Go ahead Seren, you need its power the most,” said Legend.




                                             55
5
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The party exited the secret tunnel and found themselves at the base of the Emperor’s
Tower, home of the mech Tir. Samuel explained that the mech’s brain was sealed within
a shrine that had been locked away since the time of the last war. The six of them made
their way up the tower to the shrine, taking care of the occasional black guard along the
way.


Unlocking Mrobid

Seren, Symphona, Felicia, Darkhum, Legend, and Samuel were GReeted at the entrance
by Tech Demital.

“We have been waiting for you…you are our special guests tonight” he said and waved
for the thoroughly confused party to follow him.

The Emperor of the land of Domon stood GRinning beside a tomb marked “Cervius,
Lord of the Citadel Knights.”

“You were very clever to hide one of these within my own castle. Tell me, how did you
do this? Well, it doesn’t matter. I have amassed enough power to go about unsealing
these monsters myself now. And don’t bother trying to stop me, or for that matter, don’t
even try to even move. You are under my power.”

The six of them stood frozen as Blade approached the tomb. He laid his Zanbattou upon
the GRound and in his typical all-powerful tone said calmly, “Ritual of the Unsealing!”

The tomb split in half, cracked directly down the middle. The crack proceeded from the
tomb down through the center of the room. The hole GRew and GRew and GRadually
the room gave way to a GReat chasm. All of those in the room hovered as if GRavity had
given up on the world. Below them they could see the bright plasma joints of the mech.
Its eyes lit up a bright orange and it turned to face Blade.

“Thank you for freeing me. It is good to see you again Master. How shall I
proceed?”

“Tir, you are a healing mech, correct?”

“Indeed I am. Would you like for me to present to you my main menu?”, said Tir
robotically.

“No, that’s not necessary. I want you to resurrect the citizens of Mrobid. Can you do
that?” Blade asked.

“Yes. I can bring back the entire city, but it will deplete me of all my energy. Would you
like me to execute this command?”


                                            56
                                                                                    5
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7


The rest of the Emperor’s tower fell to pieces as the resurrection mech Tir freed itself.
The Emperor, Demital, and the resistance floated high above the castle as Tir began to
cast its spell. The citizens of all the countries throughout Terra looked on in awe as the
mountains around Sore crumbled. In their place a GReat city, filled with more people
than any of them could imagine lay resurrected about Sore. Then something that nobody
had expected happened. Sore itself began to emit a queer light. Unable to sustain itself on
only one elemental root, its own power of resurrection began to fail. The GReat land
mass that had been brought back from the past began to sink. Ocean water poured in
through the faults, drowning cities and castles and mountain tops. The Emperor shouted
in rage as he watched the remainders of his castle sink into the deep.

The souls of the drowning citizens of Domon, Damon, and the many other kingdoms
escaped and were drawn into Sore. The tower reached equilibrium and the floods ceased.
However this only left a few scattered islands. The four elemental peninsulas, to the west
and east the tallest mountain ranges were all islands. The prior mentioned, Doom Castle,
and of course the Island of Mystics were all that remained. All around them lay another
world in shambles.




                                            57
5
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

City of Mrobid

Seren and Samuel awoke alone upon a foreign beach. Up ahead of them stood the gates
to the GReat city of Mrobid.

“We need to amass enough power to overcome the magic the Emperor has gained. If we
don’t we will never be able to stop him at Mystic Island,” Samuel said.

“How are we to do that?” asked Seren.

“Long ago dragons were a common sight. During the GReat War those that weren’t
enslaved by the Empire were slaughtered. Now that Mrobid has been resurrected, they
should be alive as well. The four elemental dragon lords live on what is left of the four
elemental islands at the corners of the world,” said Samuel.

“But we don’t have a boat or an airship. We are stuck here,” said Seren.

“In the basement of Soar another dragon has been sealed away. If we can break that
which binds him, he may be of some assistance to us.”

The two lone survivors of the catastrophe marched towards the gates of Mrobid. As they
entered they were shocked by what they saw.

Mrobid was a magnificent city. Massive skyscrapers reached high into the air. Spectres of
all sorts made they were through the streets. The spirits of dead Elves and Techno
Knights went through the crosswalks and in and out of the shops, going on as if nothing
in their lives had ever changed. Seren tried to hail a taxi only to have the taxi pass by and
pick up a waiting spirit. He had not realized that the shades that moved about throughout
the cobblestone streets were unable to see or interact with him. Seren pondered over the
GRavity of the situation. All these lives were lost because of the GReed of the sister
cities. GReed over a power that they still didn’t understand completely. And soon they
would be sucked up into a living weapon…

Seren and Samuel arrived at the center of the city, where the sinister tower – Soar, rose
high above the skyscrapers around it. The entrance to the lower levels of the tower was
through a back entrance. They found it unguarded and unlocked.




                                             58
                                                                                     5
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

The Maze of the Maelstrom

The putrid air burned Seren and Samuel’s nostrils as they made their way through the
sludge covered basement of the tower Soar. A mist hung in the air adding to the
perspiration that already covered their faces. Samuel explained that no man has ever
survived these tunnels. Samuel seemed to know where he was going and Seren followed.
Only few knew what exactly lived down there and most people didn’t want to find out.
There were a few adventurers who made their way into the Maze of the Maelstrom but
nobody returned to tell their story. They journeyed further, finding nothing but more
tunnels. The maze seemed to go on forever for the two. The tunnels spanned the island
that Soar stood upon, and even further, underneath the surrounding ocean.

Nothing lived in the Maze of the Maelstrom. Not even a single rat or bat. The toxic air
was deadly to any small animal or insect. Every so often they would encounter the
remains of travelers who never found their way back. After examining the bodies and
gulping in fright they continued.

Seren and Samuel reached a large antechamber where a series of other tunnels met. In the
center of the antechamber was a wrought iron spiral staircase.

“We should find the dragon above…” Samuel said.

They climbed the staircase. Seren had nervous butterflies but they disappeared after
watching Samuel’s confidence. The ceiling of the antechamber opened into an even
larger chamber. On the cold GRanite floor before them was a pool of water, over two
hundred yards square. Spanning the entire pool was a whirlpool, the maelstrom. And
bound in the center by the whirpool floated a majestic dragon.

The maelstrom, the tunnels, were all created to imprison this one creature. Piercing the
heart of the dragon, through its glistening sword like scales, was a gilded sword with the
word “Forever” etched upon its blade. It was the royal sword of the techno knights, once
wielded by the overlord of Doom Castle. The sword was once used to summon this very
dragon, the Royal Dragon. When the techno knights had finally sealed away all magic
and began sealing away themselves, they even sealed away their dragons. Bahamut and
the Royal Dragon both had this fate.

Seren stepped into the Maelstrom, clenched the hilt of the sword, and with his GReatest
effort, pulled upon the blade. But it did not move. Samuel gave it a try and failed as well.

“What will we do? There has to be some way to release him. You are a techno knight,
how do we free him?” asked Seren.

“I guess we are going to have to find some other way to get off this island. Maybe one of
those tunnels leads to an exit.” said Seren.



                                             59
6
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Samuel and Seren aGReed and they made their way back to the spiral staircase when they
heard a horrid wail. They turned back and the dragon was still sealed away, but in front
of it was a phantom sword, wielded by some unearthly force.

The phantom sword thrust towards Seren who stepped to the side narrowly avoiding
being disemboweled. The phantom sword retreated and prepared to attack Samuel.

“What is THAT?” asked Seren.

“It must be some sort of guardian. It might explain why nobody has ever escaped here.”

“How are you supposed to fight THAT?”

“I’ll show you!” Samuel replied. He took a step back as his hands began to glow a bright
blue. A trail of ice leapt from Samuel’s hands and surrounded the phantom sword. Seren
charged towards the apparition and dealt a deadly blow to the frosty weapon. It shattered,
leaving shards of icy metal on the floor of the chamber.

At that very moment the powerful maelstrom surrounding the Royal Dragon came to a
halt. The creature opened its massive eyes, reached towards the Royal Sword and pulled
it straight out of its heart. He laid the sword on the edge of the pool and let out a
humongous yawn, as if he had just woken up. The wound on his chest where the sword
had been closed itself shut and vanished, as if it had never been there.

“What a long sleep. How long has it been Samuel?”

“Ages. You must help us. The mad emperor of Domon is trying to resurrect the tower
Soar. It is already in its second stage. Mrobid has been resurrected as well. He is on his
way to the island of mystics to use the statue of the twin gods to activate the third and
final stage of Soar. We need to get off this island and to Mystic Island quickly!”

“I will take you to Mystic Island. However, I may know of a better way to stop this man.”

“How?” Seren and Samuel asked.

“There are very powerful dragons sealed at each of the elemental islands at the corners of
your world. They have been sealed in caverns on each island. I can take you to them so
you can gather the power you need to defeat the emperor. Once you have freed the four
elemental dragons, we will go to the mystic island and attack. Now, hop on my back and
hold your breath, we are going to take a short cut.”

The dragon dove into the pool with Seren and Samuel hanging on to him for their lives.
Just as Seren thought he could hold his breath no more, they burst out of the ocean and
into the sky. They headed to the northwest and soon found themselves high above a
charred and broken little island. They touched down.



                                             60
                                                                                 6
                                                                [FANTASY SAGA M] 1


“When you need me again, raise the sword into the air and I will come.”

Seren slipped the sword back into a sheath and the two dismounted.




                                          61
6
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Four elements, Four dragons

The volcanic island of magma had long burned itself out. Now all that was left was fields
of black lava rock. Somewhere deep within the island a powerful dragon, the flame
dragon, was imprisoned. The Royal Dragon had not given them any clue as to where to
find it. Samuel said he thought it may lay in one of the many dormant volcanoes, but that
was not of much help either.

Samuel and Seren wandered the barren island for days, finding no signs of life, with little
food and no shelter. It was a week they had been on the island when they saw something
that truly gave them a sense of awe. Before them was a vast open crater. And in the crater
lay a few shattered stone pillars. At one time in these ruins there had been a civilization
of some sort. In the center of the ruins an untouched, undamaged, statue of a massive
dragon stood. They both screamed, “that’s it!”, simultaneously. They dashed down the
side of the crater and ran to the ruins.

Standing before the GReat statue, Samuel closed his eyes, folded his arms, and then
spoke…

“Ritual of the unsealing!” he said. His pupils disappeared into a glowing orange light.
The statue began to crumble, tossing chunks of black lava rock into the air. It soon
revealed itself to be a black dragon, with a fiery red color on the tips of its wings and
bright orange eyes. It stepped off the platform and took a step towards Seren and Samuel,
casting lava rock all about them.

“Why have you freed me little ones?” it spoke.

“We need your help. The Royal Dragon told us you might be of help.” Samuel said.

It opened its mouth and a small orange gem fell from its tongue.

“Each of us will give you one of these. Take it and hold on to it dearly. You will know
when you need it. Goodbye.” The dragon was engulfed in fire and smoke. And then it
simply vanished.

Seren took the gem and placed it safely in his pocket. He then unsheathed the Royal
Sword and thrust it into the air. They were soon on their way to the next island, the frozen
island in the northeast. At each island they found a crater, and in each crater was a set of
ruins. They received a blue gem from the blue dragon on in the crater at the frozen island,
a yellow gem from a yellow dragon on the desert island to the south east, and finally a
GReen gem from the GReen dragon on the forest island to the south west. Unsure of
what good these gems would do, and running out of time, Seren worried. He raised the
sword into the air a final time, and commanded the Royal Dragon to take them to Mystic
Island.



                                            62
                                                                                    6
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Mystic Island floated before them in the sky, high up in the clouds. It gave off a blue aura
except for the pinnacle of the island, where the eerie GReen glow of the shards
overpowered it. As they approached a massive storm cloud soon blocked their view.

“We must wait until the storm clears…it is not safe to fly through that.” the Royal
Dragon spoke.

“We must. We have no more time to lose.” Seren said.

The dragon, carrying Seren and Samuel, entered the storm cloud. Vicious winds and hail
tore away at them. It GRew so dark that Seren and Samuel could no longer see and the
winds finally GRew too intense.

Seren and Samuel found themselves falling in a cloud of darkness…




                                            63
6
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Journey to Mystic Island Part One: The Mech Factory

Seren awoke, alone, in a valley in a foreign place with no sight of the Royal Sword to use
as an escape. Around him were tall cliffs and directly in front of him was a Domonian
soldier. And next to him was a strange suit of machinery.

“I see you are awake. Do not move. When the minister of science arrives from the factory
we will decide what to do with you.”

Seren reached into his boot for his dagger and found it still there. He quietly sighed in
relief and thought, “I’ll wait for this idiot to turn around and then take him out quickly.”

The soldier nodded a few times to apparently nobody and then turned towards Seren
again.

“The minister says I should finish you here. With the castle gone, there is no point in
taking you as a slave.”

He reached for his sword and Seren reached for his dagger. The soldier saw the glint
from Seren’s dagger and backed up.

“So you are armed…well I’ve been waiting to test this out…” the soldier said. He quickly
hopped into the machinery.

“This is a AMG. Armored Magic Gear. It’s the minister’s newest creation. This armor is
impenetrable by normal weapons, and it supplements any magic that I use. It turns your
average soldier into a super soldier.”

Seren weaved to the left and to the right, dodging streams of energy like lethal rainbows
and waiting to make his move. With each weave he GRew closer and closer to the
armored soldier. Seren dashed forward and with a single slash slit the Domonian soldier’s
throat. Blood splattered across Seren’s tunic and the AMG buckled and fell into the thick
turf. Seren tapped against the AMG with his finger and once again it burst into a rainbow
of life. The chrome engine core gleamed with light and the AMG turned to dust.
Remaining was a tiny bit of crystal. Seren pilfered the crystal and went on his way.

Seren set to familiarize himself with his surroundings. To the east and south was an
emerald ocean, to the west and north high mountain ranges, so steep he could never hope
to climb them. Seren noticed a worn trail leading further into the mountains. “Hopefully a
sign of some sort of civilization” he thought to himself and took a step towards the trail.

Seren followed the trail through the GReen pasture and up into the hills at the base of the
mountain range. Exasperated and exhausted, he decided to stop and take a breather. He
turned his head and faced south, where he saw storm clouds heading in his direction. He



                                             64
                                                                                      6
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

would have to find shelter, and soon. He stood up and continued on, following the trail, at
a much faster pace this time.

The trail ended at a small opening in the hillside. It appeared to be an old mine.
Dangerous as it might be, Seren decided to enter the cavern to wait out the rain. Thunder
boomed through the hillside, echoing alongside the steep valley walls. Shortly after, a
torrential down pour struck, and Seren could no longer even see through the wall of water
that resulted. The storm would not end soon, Seren concluded, and he decided to venture
further into the old mine. It looked like it had been vacated rather quickly as there were
tools scattered about and it had the appearance of a ghost town. That is, if towns were in
mines in unexplored mountain ranges. Seren reached the end of the cavern, where he
reached a somewhat untrustworthy looking elevator. Seren hit the switch wired on the
cave wall, and to his bewilderment, watched the elevator rocket up into the darkness.
Pressing the switch again, the elevator rocketed back down to his level. Always
fascinated by dangerous situations, Seren entered the elevator and sped into the darkness.

Shadows and whirling images passed him. He was moving at an incredible speed and
could not comprehend how this old contraption could move this fast. Finally the elevator
GRound to a halt. Ahead of Seren was a tiny circle of light. He exited the elevator and
made his way towards it.

Seren made his way through the light out into the fresh air. He was high atop of the
smaller peak of the twin peaked mountain. He looked around at took in the view of the
whole island he was on. He stepped out further on the precipice when suddenly the cold
burn of terror hit his stomach. He looked back to see the precipice breaking away from
the peak. He tried to run but couldn’t move in time. The precipice broke away from
beneath him and he clung to the edge of the mountainside. His fingers raked at the dirt
and the GRavel, trying to find something to hold on to. He couldn’t hold on much
longer…and then he lost his GRip and tumbled towards the ocean.

As Seren spun through the air towards the ocean, he knew he didn’t have much time. He
reached into his pocket and pulled out the AMG’s crystal. Fumbling with it, tumbling
towards certain death, the crystal began to glow. In a saving GRace, two tendrils sprouted
from the AMG and they surrounded him. The speckled, shining, black tendrils whipped
around him and GRew into the AMG. He was now essentially a mobile tank, plummeting
towards the ocean and in a much better situation than the first. The tank and Seren dove
beneath the emerald waves.

Mobile Armored Seren took steady steps along the ocean floor, the AMG breathing for
him and protecting him from drowning. Dragging seaweed and dead fish on the way, he
emerged and sat down upon the beach. He had yet to find a way out of this island and to
civilization. Even now that he could move through the sea, he could be wandering the sea
forever before he knew where he was going. The only option was to find a boat of some
sort, and to do that he had to find people. If that soldier was here on this island, they must




                                             65
6
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

have some sort of base. And where there is a base there has to be a boat. Beyond the
beach was all marshland and would be dangerous to traverse. But he had no other choice.

ProGRess was slow through the marshland. The water came up to Seren’s thighs – well
actually the AMG’s thighs, and each step took an enormous amount of effort. Four foot
long Dragonflies buzzed past the adventurer and shadows of unknown creatures moved
through the water around his knees. After half a day’s proGRess, the water had receded
to his ankles and soon after he made it to higher GRound.

Ahead of Seren was the base of the twin peak mountain, and what appeared to be another
abandoned mine. He entered only to find a single cavern, no elevator, no tracks, it was
nothing like the other. However, in the very center of the cavern was a small pool of
water. Seren stepped towards the pool only to discover it was not at all what he seemed.

The water whirled clockwise and of it emerged a set of wings, then a tiny little body.

“Welcome! It has been forever since I met another soul in this cavern. But I still have
been guarding it with all of my might! So traveler, would you like to travel along my
river?”

“What river? All I see is a puddle and an overGRown insect.”

“That was mean! It is a river, it really is! It arcs and swirls through every inch of this
mountain. This is the entrance.”

“I am looking for a boat. I met a soldier on this god-forsaken island earlier and I need to
find his base.”

“Oh, then you are looking for the mech factory! I don’t like those soldiers. They always
bathe in my river. But I will show you the way. Hop in the puddle, I’ll take you there!”

“Mech factory. They are building Mechs again? That can’t be good.”, thought Seren.

“Ok. Take me there.” Seren said, and stepped into the puddle. Like a vacuum, Seren was
suddenly sucked into a world of bubbles and fairies. Crystal blue water rushed past his
eyes and ears as he was pulled from the left and from the right, moving faster than he had
ever moved in his life, even faster than the elevator. Finally, he was spit out of a puddle
at the base of a small cliff-side. In the cliff side was another cavern. But this cavern was
much unlike the others.

When he stepped inside, Seren discovered this was no ordinary cave. Strange crystal
stalactites and stalagmites GRew along the edges of the corridors, and bizarre looking
tubes GRew from the cold stone floor and reached into the darkness of the cavern’s
ceiling. In the tubes were creatures, made of metal and flesh, swirling around in




                                              66
                                                                                    6
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

fluorescent GReen fluid. The creatures were attached to the edges of the tubes by multi-
colored wires, bunched together all around what was most likely the creatures’ skulls.

Seren encountered two Domonian soldiers guarding some sort of containment area. Seren
thought that while he was here, he better take out some of the operation. The fact that the
Emperor was creating mechs from scratch did not bode well for his mission. He easily
dispatched the two guards outside the containment area. However, the door was locked
and he had left behind the AMG when he entered the fairies’ river. He disarmed one of
the dead soldiers and found a set of keys. He unlocked the containment area, and went in.

Seren felt himself pulled by a some new force, something natural, something old – very
old, into a room lit in emeralds and jades. Below him lie a vast abyss, twinkling with stars
like an ether from the GReat nebulas of space. A narrow crystal bridge led from the
entrance of the room, across the ether, to a small hovering island. On that island, lay a
beaten and wounded woman. She cried out, and when she did so, her voice rang across
dimensions. All of space-time could here her torments.

His journey not without peril, Seren made his way across the crystal bridge to the
woman. Her skin was set in a tinge of GReen, and her outfit spoke of the trees and the
earth. He touched her shoulder and she rolled over and spoke, saying,

“My name is Rose. I am a dryad from a forest in the south. The emperor Blade has
imprisoned me here. He seeks to steal my soul to make another of those dastardly
machines. Please help me.”

The jade lights burst into a fiery red and then orange as a siren shrieked in the distance.
Seren beckoned Rose to follow him, but as she did the crystal bridge gave way, trapping
her between him.

“I’ll come back for you! I promise!” Seren said and dashed out of the room. He followed
the running Domonian guards, who in their panic either didn’t take notice to him or
simply thought him a waste of their time. They fled into a vast chamber, where a
monstrosity thrashed about in a towering glass tank.

The creature was made of a bizarre gel and within the gel floated tubes, and cooling fans,
microprocessors and wires. And at the base of this triumph of magic and science stood
the Chief Scientist of Domon, smiling eagerly with a mouth full of bad teeth, with his
arms crossed, the folds of fat on his arms enveloping each other.

“Seren, good to see you again. This creature we discovered not long ago, isn’t it
beautiful? I call it the Lightning Mech. See my hair? The static electricity emanated from
this creature is immense. Enough to spike everyone’s hair in the room. Not to mention
enough to slaughter a city in a single shot. The emperor will do well to have the powers
of this creature.”




                                             67
6
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“The Emperor will not have the powers of that abomination. I will see to it.” Seren
replied.

“Oh I’m sorry but I think he will. And I have more creations for you to meet within this
laboratory. It is an utter treasure trove of valuable technology. Enough to conquer
anything that will ever get in my master Blade’s way.”

Just as he spoke those words, something quite out of the ordinary happened. Obviously
these events have been out of the ordinary for the average reader, but these events are
quite typical in the post comet world of Terra. Even to the forest creatures and elven
community this must have appeared unusual. For out of the heavens a small meteor
appeared, and as it made its way through the atmosphere of Terra it transformed into a
GReat fireball, gaining more heat and velocity as it approached the Mech Factory. Finally
the fireball struck the side of the mountain, leaving a massive crater.

Seren clutched his head, then feeling that it was still there, looked down to examine
himself, surprised to still be alive. Before him, the mech Lightning lay in ruins. All about
the floor of the room a layer of primordial ooze boiled in flames, with scattered electrical
equipment scattered about as well. The Chief Scientist’s body was frozen in a horrifying
manner, his face scrambled in a terrible manner, like he just seen the face of Satan
himself. Confused as to the happenings, Seren dashed through the smoldering flames
over to him and shook him. A master of the dark arts no more, he looked at Seren and his
face and voice changed to that of an innocent as he began to speak. With a soft look in his
eyes, he looked at Seren, said the letter “M” and passed away.

Seren heard a crash in the distance. Dust and rock fell from the ceiling and he knew the
crash had made the cavern unstable. He left the chamber and returned to where Rose was
imprisoned.

“Are you still alive?”

“Yes. What happened?”

“I’m not sure. We must evacuate this place.”

“I’m sorry but I cannot do that.”

“What? Why not?”

“I cannot leave this place. Neither can you. I…must…kill you.”

Seren looked on in shock as the frail GReen woman rose in some sort of dark perversion
of magic and came at him. Seren dodged her first attack and failed to make a counter
attack. The second time around she swept past him, burnishing a cold steel dagger,
almost slicing his arm clean off.



                                            68
                                                                                     6
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9


“Why are you doing this? Please, stop!”

“I must. The Chief Scientist said it is the only way he will stop the experiments.”

“No! No he is dead. The crash killed him.”

“There will be others.”

“We can stop them. I have friends who are out there. We are building an army. One by
one. We will stop Blade.”

She came at him again. Seren swiftly swept her legs out and GRabbed the dagger. She
fought like she had completely lost her mind. This could not be the same dryad that once
protected forest creatures like rabbits and squirrels. Something had happened. He knew it.
The next time she came at him he GRabbed her by the shoulders, spun her around, and
there it was. He knew it. A small chip stuck to the back of her neck. Tiny as an ant. He
GRabbed it, tore it off, and she crumpled onto the floor.




Tech Demital sat brooding on the floor of the only working Domonian airship left in the
fleet. He had been wondering for days how the Emperor planned on breaking the seal set
about it. The island, like all magical things from the olden days, had been sealed. But not
just your typical magical seal. This island, the source of the GReatest natural magical
power, a thing of concentrated spiritual energy, had been sealed by the GReatest Techno
Knight leaders. They had all died in the process. This lock and key on the island was
unbreakable, even for Blade.

Blade sat at the bow of the airship, staring at the island, wondering what comes next. He
knew Tech was sitting back in the cabin, still pouting like a schoolgirl. Tech didn’t like
the fact that Seren and his friends were still alive, and he didn’t like the fact that the
Emperor hadn’t spoken for days.



Seren and Rose escaped the bottom floor of the Mech factory. Rose had shown Seren the
elevator that led to the upper level of the factory. There, an undamaged threat still
remained. While they were there, they better take out the whole operation.

At the top floor the Minister of Science, the Chief Scientists’s creations ran loose. Tiny
mechs, large mechs, and other such chimera’s of science and magic had taken over the
place. Evil set deep into their hearts from conception, they had slaughtered most of the
Domonian guards and footsoldiers already.


                                             69
7
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]


Seren and Rose made short work of most of the creations, that is, until they came upon a
small mech that had been unreleased. It was still missing a heart, the most important
thing in a mech. Seren and Rose searched about for the missing parts to it, and then
finally found a heart that hadn’t been tortured into the dark forces. They placed it into the
mech.

The creatures head jerked back as it breathed its first breath of life. Opening its eyes, it
looked at Seren and Rose and spoke,

“My wish is your command. I have seven different operating modes. Please choose one.”

Seren and Rose both looked at each other and then Seren, turning back to the creature,
said,

“Listen mech. We need your help in our journey. Please choose the operating mode that
is most peaceful. We must destroy the Empire of Domon. Will you comply?”

The mech nodded. Rose GRumbled under her breath that we are befriending an enemy,
but Seren took no notice.
There was one more chamber left in the Mech Factory. And it was the most deadly on the
upper level. Sitting in it, was a creature that was deadlier than all of the other creatures on
the upper floor. It’s name was Kintaroo. It was a mech made out of the soul of a dragon.

Kintaroo roared. Seren, Rose, and the new mech (which Rose had named Senen, after
Seren) took their battle positions. Senen however, being a mech also, could speak with
the creature.

“You would not believe the things it says” Senen said.

“What do you mean?” said Seren.

“The creature desires only blood. The blood of the living. It could care less of me. It
speaks of murder and torture, and it will never be satisfied. We cannot let such a thing
exist.”

Seren had borrowed a sword from a Domonian soldier while they were on the lower
floor, and now thrust it forward, prepared to vanquish the dragon mech on his own. The
others tried to pull him back but to no avail.

Seren had GRown more confident since he gained the power of the spirits of the dragons
from the four islands. He spoke a few words in a strange language, Drakanish I’m told,
and a fiery aura appeared all around him, enveloping him and his sword. He leapt
towards Kintaroo, and pierced its black heart with his blade.




                                              70
                                                                                     7
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

Kintaroo collapsed, the massive creature crushing everything beneath him. It screeched,
and lit the room aflame.

When Seren, Rose, and Senen reached the outside, night had fallen, and they made little
proGRess in their journey. Rose had suggested travelling up the mountain. She had told
them that there, beyond the forest, lay a village of crafty dwarfs who may know of a way
to get to Mystic Island.

The three made their way through the frigid cold night and soon found themselves at the
base of a cliff, lit up by the Cliffside homes of the Island Dwarves. Each home sat on an
outcropping, ladders were used to travel from building to building, and beneath the cliff-
face existed a deep system of tunnels constructed by the dwarves for both travel and for
their dwellings.

The party chatted with the friendly folks who lived in the cliff side town, learning that a
spring further up the mountain burst into a river nearby and could carry them out to sea.
Within the dwarven prison, an ancient being was imprisoned.

“What are you and why are you imprisoned here?” asked Seren.

“I am Ramuh. I thought you were on of those evil little men, the dwarves. The elder of
them has absorbed the power from a mech crystal and become a being of Magi-Tek.”

“In the ancient times, before the war, before the Techno Knights locked themselves away
to seal away all the magic in the world, there were beasts who had been caught up in the
middle of the magical wars feuds. They were infused with magic by both sides for
experiment, then let loose into the wild. They are called Slions.”

“These beasts were enchanted by the magic of the comet, ravenous and deadly. They
were eventually imprisoned in stone GRaves, invisible to the naked eye. I can sense that
there is one nearby, the elder knows more. It is the reason he has imprisoned me here. For
fear it may join my side.”

“We should find this elder. Let’s free Ramuh and keep going.” Seren said.

“But we don’t know where the key for Ramuh’s cell is,” Senen said.

“Do not worry little ones. Remember I am a being of magic and can take many forms.I
will sacrifice this body, this form, and give my powers at your disposal. That is the most
freedom I will ever be GRanted in this world.”

Ramuh kneeled upon the stone floor and began to give off a GReat blue neon light.
Slowly he faded away, his power funneling into Seren.

“I will always be with you” Ramuh’s voice echoed in Seren’s mind.



                                             71
7
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


After freeing Ramuh, the three decided to travel to the armor shop for equipment.
Dwarves are known for their craftsmanship, and they were sure they could find better
armor here than anywhere else in the world. What they found was a surprise.
In the armor shop were fragments of AMG, Armored Magic Gear for sale.

“That’s the armor that soldier had! You can’t be selling that!” Seren said.

“Beneath this house we found some mines. They lead to a factory for constructing
mechs. We disassembled some of the equipment we found there and decided to sell it as
armor.” The young shopkeeper said.

“Listen, you must stop selling that. The empire is dangerous and if they find out you are
selling their equipment they will take out their vengeance,” Seren said.

“But we will be poor again. I’d rather be dead from the empire’s vengeance than suffer
hunGRy for the rest of my life.” The shopkeeper said.

“I wouldn’t worry about it. I think I can help with that.” A strange blonde haired man,
short and skinny, with pointy ears, walked into the room. Seren blinked, rubbed his eyes,
and stared in shock.

“I am Sinko, last of the light elves.” Light elves are the purest of elves. They are bright
and brilliant, like the energy from the stars itself. They have command over all of the
elements with GReat ease, and are the purest of souls.

“How will you help us with our money problems?” The shopkeeper said.

“Simple. Magic.” Sinko said. He laid his hand upon the counter, and as he did, the
countertop, the floor, the walls, the ceiling, and soon every inanimate object in the room
turned to pure gold. The shopkeeper fell to the GRound and kissed the now very
expensive floor.

“Take me to these mines, I will turn them to gold for you as well. I am here only to do
good deeds for man. This is my only purpose.” Sinko said.

He then turned to the three of us and said, “As for you three, I will help you too with
whatever troubles you.”

“We could use your magical powers in our journey to defeat the evil Empire of Domon.
If you would join us,” said Seren.

“Indeed I will join you in your travels, but first, take us to these mines.”




                                              72
                                                                                      7
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

The shopkeeper set the clock to 10:00 p.m., and suddenly a hidden passageway in the rear
of the room opened, leading to the mines below. The GRoup of four; Seren, Rose, Senen,
and Sinko entered the mines and inside, room by room, Sinko’s brilliant light turned the
walls to gold.

When they entered the final tunnel of the mine, the voice of Ramuh echoed in Seren’s
head…

“A mech sleeps here, sealed away. His name is Alpha and he is sealed within the floor
beneath you. Defeat him and receive his power and he will be a GReat asset to you.”

Seren touched the floor with his hand, and Ramuh did the rest. The power of Ramuh
flowed into the cold stone, breaking the seal and suddenly before them stood the mech
Alpha.

Alpha consisted of heavy thick armor, a thick shield, and a long broadsword. His body
was pure energy that glowed and flowed around the physical parts of him. He let loose a
low sound, that sounded like a mix between a GRowl and a gurgle, and came at the five
of them.

The shopkeeper ran to hide. Meanwhile Seren, Senen, Rose, and Sinko engaged the
enemy. Seren dashed towards the mech, stabbing fruitlessly into the magical energy that
surrounded him, while Senen let loose waves of fire into its armor. They were not making
much proGRess, and every attack just seemed to anger Alpha more and more.

“I don’t know if we are going to be able to kill this thing Seren,” Rose said.

“I haven’ t seen one of these guys for a while,” Sinko said.

“How do you plan on stopping him?” Seren said.

“Like this.” Sinko said. Suddenly a flash let loose, brilliant, and in the place of the
clothed Light Elf was a being like an angel.

“This is my alter-ego, my highest form. Its name is Specter. Only light elves can
transform like this. It is where we get our name.”

Sinko swung a sword made of sparks and pure light towards the mech, severing its limbs
first, then finally putting a gash in its armor.

“Seren, finish him off. Aim for the head, call on Ramuh.”

Seren knelt on the GRound, lowered his head, and whispered, “Ramuh we need your
help….”




                                              73
7
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

In a flash, ascending like a ghost from Seren’s soul, Ramuh appeared and delivered the
last, fatal blow of heavenly lightning the mech. Its armor, sword, and shield shattered and
the whispers of magical energy that held it together funneled downwards, shrinking, and
finally crystallized.

“I believe that is yours to take Seren” said Rose.

Seren reached forward, placed his hand on the crystals, and spoke a soft prayer. The
energy of the dead mech flowed into him, he gained the powers of Alpha. An invisible
door opened up ahead of them, and out of pure curiosity, all four of them went in.

The door leads to a platform that overlooked a GReat abyss. Rising out of the abyss was a
GReat glass tube, with many aluminum tubes branching in and out of it. In the center of
the glass tube was a disc, shaped like a compass, constantly rotating, sparking and
glowing and bubbling.

A voice could be heard echoing robotically from the abyss.

“I know your power, but ours is GReater. You will all perish.”

“That’s the power core for the factory. It is made of the darkest magic, powers that are
similar to that of Soar. Once upon a time, power cores like that were littered all across the
world. Their minions are dangerous, but they are even more dangerous when acting of
their own accord. We need to destroy it. An evil like that cannot stay in this world.”
Sinko said.

“But how do we get to it?” Seren said. The core was far away from the platform, seated
directly in the abyss.

“Follow me!” Senen yelled and leapt off the platform into the abyss/

“You crazy fool!” Seren yelled. And then followed, along with Rose and Sinko.

Senen caught the three of them in a magical anti-GRavity field, and they glided down to
the surface, with the GReat reactor ahead of them, looming overhead. They climbed the
access stairs surrounding the reactor tube, dodging bolts of energy the reactor’s defense
system sent reeling at them. Finally, they safely reached the main control panel, seated in
front of the humongous compass looking dial that lived within the main tube.

Seren hit the self-destruct switch on the reactor.

“Self-destruct in twenty minutes.” The control system echoed.

“You fools. I will destroy you with me!” The reactor screeched.




                                             74
                                                                                      7
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

“Self-destruct in ten seconds.” The control system echoed.

“What? How did it do that? We have to get out of here or we are dead!” Rose cried.

Senen surrounded them in an anti-GRavity bubble and they slowly ascended out of the
abyss, towards the exit. Suddenly, the reactor began to glow. The self destruct was
activated and a massive blast let loose, propelling the four of them out of the cavern.

When the four of them awoke, they found themselves heavily bandaged lying in the
infirmary of the Dwarves’ village. Seren GRoaned and stumbled to his feet, looked out
the window, to see a GReat chasm tore into the place where once peaceful little men
lived. The entire cliff side had been replaced by a gaping hole ripped open by the
explosion of the reactor and the final destruction of the Mech Factory.

After a few days the party recovered and the surviving dwarves had built a ladder leading
into the chasm. Curious and ready to explore again, the four of them ventured down the
ladder to find themselves in a tunnel exposed by the explosion. Sitting in the tunnel, was
the entrance to an ancient mechanical digging castle.

In the castle stood an old statue, a frozen techno knight known as the “Engineer”. Seren
approached the statue, and spoke to it.

“Oh GReat old one, awaken and tell us the secrets of this castle.”

The stone surface of the knight began to chip away, and soon a young man in glasses was
revealed. He stepped down from the stone platform, and said,

“Welcome friends. This is the ancient castle built by dwarves long ago. It is a castle with
no name, built in honor of a ruler long forgotten. It will travel through these mountains,
seated upon magical rails in tunnels long ago dug by the dwarven people. It was once
used so the forgotten dwarven king could visit any of his cities in an instant and in style.
As there are no more dwarven cities in this island, please feel free to take this castle as
your own. I will be your engineer.”

The engineer pressed a few switches, and suddenly the castle arose to where the chasm
was, drilling its way through the stone, and rising into the free cool air once again.

“Mr. Engineer, I have a special request for you.” Seren said.

The five of them were gathered in the engine room.

“The chief has told us while we were in the infirmary that there is a GReat river at the
peak of this mountain. A river so powerful its current could carry us back to civilization.
Do you think your castle could take us up to there? After that, we would like for you to




                                             75
7
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

return to the village with the crater, so that the dwarves without homes may live in this
castle in peace.”

“It will be done.” The Engineer said.

The Castle emerged towards the peak of the mountain. There, the four of them took
dwarven engineered snow mobiles to the very top of the mountain, where the river burst
through out of the earth. There they took their supplies, and boarded a magical dwarven
raft, that was to carry them to civilization. Hopefully. The river burst from the
underGRound, and it carried them far, far out to sea. The currents carried them back
towards the center of the world, where they hoped to find the remains of Domon, Damon,
or some city.




                                            76
                                                                                    7
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

Journey to Mystic Island Part Two: The Island of Imps

Sinko, Seren, Rose, and Senen had been carried out into the deep blue ocean, in which
most of the world had become covered. The party was running low on supplies and with
little hope of finding any civilization. And then…Senen spotted it first. In the distance
was an island, a twin with similar shape to the island the Dwarves had lived upon that
they had just embarked from.

The two twin islands were all that was left of the mighty mountain range that once
surrounded the city of Domon and held the dig site for the tomb of the techno knight that
had started this entire adventure. The party soon found themselves close enough to the
island to swim ashore and that is what they did.

Exhausted, starving, and dirty after days at sea, the four of them came to the beach of the
island made from what once was the eastern mountain range on the Continent of Aslen.
They began to unpack their belongings and found that there really was very little food or
water left from their journey. They would have to explore the island further and scavenge
for resources to survive.

“Hey. Do any of you hear something?” Sinko inquired.

“Look over there!” Once again, Senen spotted it first. In the distance was a small GReen
creature, with tiny horns seated upon its head and a bow strapped to its back. It had long
brown shaggy thick hair like brush and was voicing a noise that sounded like, “Soot.
Soot”.

“It is an Imp. They are small burrowing creatures. To be honest I have never seen an
actual living one though. This one looks like it wants to help us,” Rose said.

“Hi little guy. Do you have any food or water?” Seren said as he approached the creature.

“Soot! Soot!” The Imp replied enthusiastically, jumping up and down, then began a light
sprint towards the cliff side. It stopped, turned around, and echoed “Soot! Soot!” again.

“I think it wants us to follow it,” said Rose.

The party followed the Imp up to the thick rock cliff. Then, in amazement, they watched
as the creature tapped on the rock. A gaping tunnel GRew out of nothingness and the Imp
entered.

“Do you think its safe?” said Senen.

“I believe so. Let’s follow.” Seren said.




                                                 77
7
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

After a short walk through the spontaneously generated cave, the party found themselves
in a small village, situated in a canyon, filled with the little GReen creatures. Sitting in
the bay, next to the village, sat an old beaten up pirate ship.

“Let’s look around. They seem friendly enough. Maybe they can help us get off this
island.” Seren said.

“If we could fix up that ship, I’m sure we could sail anywhere we had to.” Sinko said.

“Well, they have to have a leader. Let’s find him and see if we can communicate to him
that we would like to borrow his ship.”

Seren and his friends searched the Imp village until they found a tunnel in the rock that
was adorned with jewels and silk, most likely scavenged from the pirate ship. Inside, a
large old Imp sat upon a throne of rock. Seren approached him, with knee on the
GRound, and said,

“Hello your highness. We were hoping we could make a simple request of you. Can you
understand me?”

“Yes I can. I am in possession of a machine that will translate any language to any other.
It is an old machine, built before the time of the comet. You may be surprised, but we
imps have come to possess many such artifacts. You may borrow our ship, but first I ask
a favor of you.”

“And what favor is that?” Seren asked.

“There is an evil creature that comes by night. It hunts down and devours our children. It
calls itself Zowyer. It was once one of us, but was changed by the dark magic of the
Emperor of Domon into something hideous many moons ago.”

“We will do what we can your highness.” Seren said.

That night the four of them slept in the middle of the canyon village, waiting for the
creature to appear. In the distance they heard a gurgling in the water of the bay. Massive
GReen claws reached out of the depths and took hold of the GRound. And Zowyer then
pulled himself ashore.

The creature still appeared Imp-like, despite his enormous height. He was twisted and
disfigured, with black eyes each the size of a human’s skull. Out of his back sprung
gargantuan wings that curved to a deadly point. The mutant stumbled on to the beach,
approached the four of them, and roared.

Seren stood ready to slaughter the creature, but then Rose held him back.




                                             78
                                                                                    7
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

“Maybe I can cure his disease. I can feel the powers of nature running strong through
him. He may be able to be saved.”

Rose stepped towards the creature, holding her hand in the air as if to touch it, and
planted her feet deep into the sand. Through the powers of nature, her feet became roots
and plunged deep into the Earth. The creature slowed its approach, and then knelt under
Rose’s hand. Rose petted the creature lightly upon its head, and began to sing.

Claws turned to hands, eyes black to white, and skin tough to soft. Zowyer began to
shrink and then as Rose sang her song, he became a normal Imp once again.

“I can never thank you enough for lifting this curse from me. I was once a happy Imp
named Gerald that lived in this village with the rest of my people. But one day the
Emperor Blade cursed me for defying him, and I turned into that creature. I had an
insatiable thirst for blood and couldn’t control myself.”

“Your welcome Gerald. Now you can return to your life.” Rose said.

“No, that is the thing. I cannot. Not after what I’ve done.”

“I think he should come with us, we could use talents like his.” Senen said.

“AGReed. Gerald, would you like to join us on our mission to defeat Blade?” Seren
asked.

“I would but I do not think it can be done.” Gerald said.

“It may take an army….” Rose said.

“And if it does we will gather one,” said Seren.

And that night Gerald joined them. The next day the Imps were so thankful they worked
nonstop at restoring the pirate ship for the GRoup to use. After a week, it was in suitable
condition. The five of them loaded up their supplies, and prepared to set sail.

The five of them left the Island of Imps and headed towards the Mystic Island. They were
sailing for almost a week when another island loomed into view. On it sat a small fortress
and a GReat fleet of boats. A large gunship approached theirs and prepared to board.

“What is the meaning of this?” Seren asked the soldier that approached.

“You are in the territory of the Empire of Domon. You are under arrest for sailing an
illegal pirating vessel.”




                                             79
8
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

And thus the five of them were imprisoned in a fortress on an island, that was all that
remained of the Domonian Empire.

Night came soon, and the five of them found themselves imprisoned along with a thief
named Intee.

Intee was a mimic. He could copy the appearance and abilities of anybody he was in sight
of, but only briefly. He was also excellent at picking any sort of lock. Fortunately for
Seren and friends, the Domonian soldiers that picked him up were oblivious to the fact.
Intee picked the lock on the cell in a matter of seconds.

“I suggest if you five are going to escape you do it now.” Intee said.

“I’ve told you of our quest to stop the Emperor Blade from destroying this world. We
could use skills like yours. Why don’t you come along with us?” Seren said.

“Sorry. That’s not exactly my style. I work alone. But I do know where they stash the fire
rods if you guys want to keep the Domonians from pursuing you. We can burn down the
whole place!” Intee said.

The six of them broke into the weapons closet. They set off the fire rods and as the
flames burst from room to room, Seren and his friends boarded the Imp’s ship (which
was in tow) and fled the burning fortress. Intee, needing an easy escape, decided to join
them after all. After two days of sailing, they reached their destination.




                                             80
                                                                                     8
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

The Island of Mystics

The Island of Mystics glistened in the sunlight, floating high over the ocean depths. Two
Domonian airships were docked next to it, floating alongside, bound by invisible forces:
the invisible forces of magic. Senen used his magical power and transported the five of
them up to a secluded corner of the island. Intee stayed aboard the ship to guard it.

The five of them battled through soldier after soldier, and mutant after mutant, until
finally they reached the peak of the island. There, atop this piece of enchanted stone and
earth, the Emperor Blade and Tech Demital stood before the statues Uriel and Raphael.

“I hope we are not too late.” Sinko said.

“Blade! Demital! I command you to stop!” Seren said.

“Ha ha ha! You are a fool! The process has already begun. I have made my wish, and
now all life on this planet will bend to my will.” Blade said.

On a distant star, the Chief of Corrections was weeping. He stepped away from his
monitor and out of his office, done for the day. He had seen enough, he knew enough of
the impact of his people.

A whirlwind gathered at the top of Mystic Isle, in between Uriel and Raphael. The earth
moaned and a teary rain fell from the heavens. Tsunami’s struck the shores of the
Dwarven Island and the juxtaposed Island of Imps. Then the ocean opened up like a
GReat mouth, parting and dividing. The power cores built by the ancients began to spin
and moan. In the distance, the last surviving humans raised their island into the sky for
protection. The water receded, absorbed into nothingness. And from the depths of Terra
arose a massive tower, a tower that dwarfed even Soar, and it shot up like a lightening
rod high into the sky. It was Soar in phase 3, the Tower of Babel, called Sandre by the
night elves. Around it, the land that had been revealed when the ocean parted GRew
brown and scarred. The earth rotted and turned to wasteland. The plants died, the people
died, and the cities fell to ashes. All the life force on the earth was slowly vacuumed into
Sandre through the evil devices. The power cores. They sapped Terra of all life and
funneled it directly into Sandre.

Mystic Island began to collapse, its energy be drawn into Sandre like all other forces of
energy had been, like stardust being sucked into a black hole. Blade and Tech Demital
took flight, flying towards Sandre, prepared to take command of the ultimate instrument
of Doom. The island of Serenity sat high in the sky, almost in orbit, just outside of
Sandre’s reach. And below the floating piece of rock that the five adventurers sat upon,
the Temporal Triangle appeared, opening its gaping mouth, providing the only escape for
the five from Armageddon.

“Jump! It’s the only way! It’s the only way to live!” Seren said.


                                             81
8
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“Are you insane? Jump into that?” Senen said.

“I’ve done it once already. By accident. You may wind up in the past, you may wind up
in the future. But wherever you do wind up, you will still be alive at least! You won’t be
trapped in that monstrosity of science and all creation!” Seren said. And the five of them
joined hands and leapt into the triangle.

The party found themselves drifting through a world of shapes and figures, ghosts of the
past, present, and future swirling around them. Surrounding them were ruins of villages,
cities, and clouds of stardust taking the shapes of mysteries. They swam through the
strange space until they spotted, in the distance, a massive crystal emitting a beautiful
blue light.

“That crystal is the center of the Temporal Triangle. It is what fuels it. It has existed
longer than Terra, and probably will exist longer than this universe. It is intelligent, my
ancestors used to be able to communicate with it, but I think that ability has been lost.”
Sinko said.

“Well let’s try.” Seren said.

The five of them floated towards the crystal, and Sinko began to speak in a deep tone.

“Koneack klo deas, nokede lock.” He said to the crystal. It beamed back at him, and
opening before him, a GReat portal looked on to the past.

“Come on. The crystal has told me that it wishes to take us back to before the Emperor
discovered the Techno Knights. Back to the beginning.” Sinko said.

The five of them leapt into the portal. And then everything went black.




                                             82
                                                                                          8
                                                                         [FANTASY SAGA M] 3




Part II
                      And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and
                      a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven;
                      and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered
                      upon the face of the whole earth.
                      Genesis 11:3-5




Back to the Beginning of Things….

Seren awoke on the beach outside the island of Zig. Where he had awoken before, so
long ago. It was the very same beach that he had awoken on after his first trip through the
Temporal Triangle, when he was just a kid. Except this time, he had arrived just before
his trip to the excavated Techno Knight. Beside him was a wounded Senen.

“You don’t look so good pal.” Seren said.

“No I believe I don’t. I’m running out of power. I’m dieing Seren.”

“What do you mean? Why?”

“We mechs only live for so long. Once we exhaust so much of our power, we are useless.
We are man-made life, we just aren’t natural, my friend.”

“…” Seren was speechless.

“I want you to have my powers. You have gathered quite a bit of magical power by now
on your own in this cold war Seren, and your strength will soon rival the Emperor’s. This
last bit, my power, will be enough for you to fight the Emperor as he stood in this time
period. Remember, he has not even absorbed all of the magic of the mechs yet. He is just
discovering those powers in this time period. You can fight him and stop our horrific
future from happening if you take my power now. Go ahead Seren, take my life force and
defeat the GReat evil of the Emperor of Domon. All of us are trusting in you…”

Senen began to glow and as Seren touched him, Senen’s life force funneled into Seren.
Lost memories, lost knowledge, and lost power was found by Seren. In himself, his
memories had all returned, his power he had lost when the symbiant was taken from him
had returned. Now he was strong, now he felt he could take on anything in this world.
And he could.

Seren made his way from the shore side to the beach-town of Zig. Zig was populated by a
race of peaceful magicians, who used a very unique form of magic. Each ziggian had a



                                              83
8
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

twin brother or sister. They were only able to use their powers in the presence of their
twin, but with their combined abilities they could create GReat devastation.

The Emperor Blade had enslaved the people of Zig, only leaving the very elderly to live
in the village. All those able to wield a shovel or pick had been sent to the mines far
beneath Domon to harvest comet shards. The shards were gathered to feed to the
symbiote, to make it GRow, reproduce, and spread over the island of Domon. The
ziggians were subjected to strange experiments deep within Domon’s laboratories, often
resulting in strange mutations that were freed to roam the countryside.

Seren had spent two nights in the village of Zig, speaking to the people, trying to spread
hope to the hopeless. Then in the town hall,

“You must rebel against the Emperor. Now is the time, I have seen the future and it is
horrid. The entire world drowned in the waves of the ocean by Blade and his nefarious
plans.” Seren said to the people.

“We can do nothing against him. He is too strong. Let the people of Glaw fight him,” one
elderly man said.

“Yeah! There is nothing we can do. Let us rest peacefully here. If fate wishes him to
perish, then fate will do so,” another said.

The crowd protested and vexed, Seren left the stage and walked about the garden to the
east side of the village. It was then an old man, with an oaken cane, wearing an old wool
cloak, came to him.

“Listen, I know who you are. You really are a traveler from the future. But you are from
our time. When I used to work in the mines you visited once. Then I saw an evil glow in
your eyes, that now I see no longer. My GRandson and GRanddaughter are both powerful
magicians. They live in the mountains to the east of here. They will help you if you tell
them that I sent you. Go there and gain their assistance.”

With that, the old man vanished. Seren traveled to the eastern mountains, following the
old man’s directions. He came upon an old oak tree, the tallest in the forest. It was from
this holy tree that the old man had made his cane. Aside of the tree was the mouth of a
cave. Seren went inside to find a ten year old boy and his ten year old sister seated by a
small fire.

“Your GRandfather sent me. I have come to gain your assistance in fighting Blade. What
are your names?” Seren said.

“I am Taran” said the girl.

“And I am Toran” said the boy.



                                            84
                                                                                     8
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


The two aGReed at once to join Seren on his journey, and told him of a stone elemental
that lived nearby who had been helping them find food and survive. They reached the
cavern, and Taran approached a GReat boulder seated against the cavern wall. He tapped
on it three times, and it unfolded to reveal a monstrous stone elemental.

“Ugh…why have you awoken me. I was sleeping so peacefully” the stone elemental said.

“We need your help. We are going to Domon castle to fight the Emperor,” said Taran and
Toran both at the same time.

“I am not concerned with the matters of men,” said the elemental.

Then Taran and Toran joined hands, and in between their arms a portal opened. And in it
appeared a vision of the future. The world was a wasteland, and a GReat tower reached
high into the heavens, draining all of the life from the world.

“This is our future. Your kind will all perish in the wake of the Emperor’s lust for
power,” the twins said.

“Ugh…I will help you. But I will not leave this island. Do you understand?” the
elemental said.

“What is your name, son of the earth?” said Seren.

“My real name cannot be pronounced by men. But you may call me Rocklord.”

And with that, the four-some began the dangerous journey towards the heart of Blade’s
empire, the castle Domon.



Temporal Paradoxes

After a deadly hike through the forests surrounding Zig, the party reached the city of
Domon. The people of Domon were high class and aristocrats. They reveled in parties,
good wine, and expensive food. They peered on at the four travelers, speaking very little
to them, more absorbed in their own luxuries than what was around them. The Earth gate
was the easiest way to get into the castle at this point, and the four of them would have to
make it past the guards to get in. Taran and Toran cast a sleeping spell on a small troop of
guards making its way out of a tavern. The four of them donned the armor and made their
way to the Earth gate under the cover of night.

Guarding the courtyard was a very anGRy smoke dragon, who recognized them
immediately as imposters.


                                            85
8
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“You are not guards. I can tell from the smell of you. Two ziggians, a rock elemental, and
a traitor. That’s what you are. Tell me why I shouldn’t eat you immediately?” the smoke
dragon said.

Taran and Toran cast their visions spell once again and the dragon saw his future, his soul
bound within the tower in the wasteland future. A single tear dropped from his eye and
turned to steam.

“I will GRant you passage on one condition. I cannot leave this place, I am bound by a
spell of the Emperor. But can you rescue my child. His name is Smog and he lives in that
small hut at the edge of the courtyard wall. Please, take him with you.”

Inside the hut the four found a baby smoke dragon.

“Come with us. We are going to battle the Emperor, and the power of a dragon would
GReatly help us,” Seren said.

“But the Emperor takes care of me?”

“Look what he will do to you.” Taran and Toran showed the dragon a vision of his future,
and he quickly changed his mind.

The five of them moved on past the outer courtyard to the inner courtyard. Here, throngs
of royal guards patrolled the entrance to the Minister’s Tower, where Seren would have
to go to stop himself.

Outside, one of the guards told Seren of how a once normal magical being, called an
Eidelon, stood between the two statues on Mystic Island and became a Goddess. She
called herself Starlet and guarded the entrance to the Minister’s Tower.

The five of them entered in fear, knowing the viciousness and GReat power of the
Goddess Starlet. Immediately she appeared before them.

Starlet had the beauty of an angel. She addressed Seren first.

“Why do you want to harm a man who has given you so much?” she said.

Seren and the ziggians began to fall into a trance. It was Rocklord and Smog, the baby
dragon, who saved them.

“We will not fall under your spell like sons of men. Hold your tongue you lieing she-
devil” Rocklord said.




                                            86
                                                                                   8
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

Smog breathed flames at Starlet, and she began to change shape. Her legs bound into one
and GRew long and slimey, her face turned to that of a horses’ head, and spines covered
her body. The giant worm creature that she had become lashed out at Seren, when
Rocklord quickly slammed its head to the GRound.

Seren and the twins awoke from their daze to find the disgusting mutant at battle with
Smog and Rocklord. Seren drew his blade, and after saying an enchantment, sliced off
one of the smaller worms GRowing from Starlet’s back.

Meanwhile the twins were casting a spell. The ceiling GRew as dark as night, and one
could see the stars overhead. From out of the darkness three meteors appeared, and each
one crashed into Starlet, igniting the slime covering her body. She twisted and writhed in
pain. Then, her slimey exterior shattered like crystal, revealing a single worm with a
dozen heads.

“Heee hahahha. I am immortal, you cannot kill me!” she screeched.

“You have to sever the heads Seren!” the twins shouted.

Seren severed each head, dodging the lashing tongues and yellow, dagger like teeth of
them. Finally, the worm body writhed and ceased. The heads lay on the GRound, cursing
and gnashing their teeth.

Rocklord spoke something in a guttural language that none of the five knew, and twelve
stone spikes rose from the GRound, each one impaling a head of the fallen goddess. The
heads shattered, and a spirit left each of them until the spirits combined in a single
location. There appeared a crystal, the purified soul of Starlet.

“Go ahead Seren, you earned it,” the twins said.

Seren touched the crystal, and absorbed its energy. Deep within him he felt the magical
power of Starlet join to him, making him stronger, braver, and wiser.

The door beyond Starlet led to the entrance of the Domonian laboratories. Within they
found many magical beings bound by energy chains and beings half mutated imprisoned
within gigantic tubes. Some beings were left as only crystals, waiting to be absorbed by
the Emperor for his own despicable purposes. Seren went to each being, and each being
GRanted him their power for his quest. There were ifrits, djinns, imps, and many more.
Finally, Seren entered another room, and there he met a shadowy figure in jet-black
armor…

“You freed the Eidelons! How dare you! Who do you think you are?” the figure said.

“I am…you Seren.” Seren said.




                                            87
8
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Seren of the past stood still, confused. The symbiot helmet he wore shrunk away to reveal
his face. Seren of the future stood still also, intrigued. He took off his ninja guard helmet
and revealed his face. The two circled around each other for a few moments. And then,
Seren number one reached out his hand just as Seren number two reached out his hand.
Two fingers touched and….

Time and space wrapped around their fingertips. There was a small explosion and fire
leapt from between them. The two were thrown to either end of the room. Seren of the
past was unconscious. And in between them appeared a figure, dressed in red with a
flaming scimitar. It was M.

“I AM BORN” M roared.

“You! What are you?” Seren asked.

“I am your alter ego. Your other personality. I was created at this moment in the time
stream, created from your own foolishness. I am your paradox. I am the skeletons in your
closet. I am your manifested nightmare.”

M GRew transparent, transformed into a spirit, then entered Seren of the past’s body.
Seren of the past awoke.

“Am I still dreaming? You will not stop me from performing my mission to the Lord
Blade,” Seren of the present said. Seren of the present cast the spell warp, then vanished.

“Where did he go?” the twins asked.

“Oh I know. He went to awaken the Techno Knight. We must stop him!” Seren said.

“But before we go, I have an idea. There is another person who may help us. He is a very
talented weapons artist who lives in a hidden part of this castle. The entrance is in my
room at the top of this tower.”

Seren remembered the passcode to the secret entrance he had used so often so many years
back. The weapon’s artist was a good friend of Seren’s, once a very skilled member of
the ninja guard, he had had a disaGReement with the Emperor and was banished to the
Citadel ruins.

“A long time ago, before the Emperor took over, this castle was actually a monastery,
controlled by a GRoup of powerful monks who called themselves the Citadel Knights. A
select few of them eventually became the Techno Knights. Anyway, the new castle was
built over the old monastery. Follow me everyone, this is the way. The weapons artist
goes by the name Sneak. He lives in a passage behind the old throne room.”




                                             88
                                                                                    8
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

There the five of them became six. They found Sneak, the ex-ninja guard captain. He
aGReed to join them on their mission and even revealed something else…

“Seren, I know of someone else who may help us. Our old mentor, I know where he is
living.” Sneak said.

“Ome Sumac? The only man to master every weapon style?” Seren said.

“Yes. He is living in a secret cave to the west of the cavern with the Techno Knight in it.
But it is sealed by boulders so heavy no man or woman could ever lift them.”

“What about someone who can control the earth?” Seren said and looked at Rocklord.

The party made their way to the old Domonian docks. There, in a cavern, high upon a
cliff, Rocklord opened the passageway to see Ome Sumac.

“Seren, Sneak, why have you disturbed my meditations?” the old man said. He was
wrapped in many cloaks, and all about the cavern were weapons of all sorts of shapes and
sizes. Tridents, swords, daggers, flails, bows, crossbows…the list went on. Every sort of
weapon a man could conceive Ome Sumac had mastered.

“We need your assistance. We wish to defeat the Emperor. There is a horrible future
ahead of us all if we don’t,” Seren said.

“I must test you first to see if you are ready for the challenge ahead of you,” said Ome
Sumac.

The old samurai arose, and around him, by magic, all of his weapons arose and pointed
directly at Seren.

“Remember, size is not everything,” Ome Sumac said.

Seren drew his sword and waved the others back. He inched towards Ome Sumac, casting
off weapon after weapon that sped toward him. Finally he reached the old Samurai, and
placed the tip of his sword at his throat. The weapons dropped, Ome Sumac nodded, and
the seven of them left the cavern.




                                            89
9
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Magic of the Old World

Seren, Smog, Sneak, Taran, Toran, Rocklord, and Ome Sumac all approached the ancient
cavern where the Techno Knight had been unearthed. Outside stood two ninja guards,
who Seren quickly dispatched. Seren said he had to enter the cavern alone.

Seren entered the cave only to find Seren of the past ready to touch the ancient statue of
the Techno Knight.

“No!!! You cannot do that! Blade will just steal the magic. It is the beginning of the end!”
Seren cried.

But Seren of the past ignored him. “What magic is this? Who are you? And why do you
look like me?”

“I am you from the future.” Seren said.

“If you are me from the future, why are you trying to stop me?”

“Because the man you think the Emperor is, is not who he actually is. He is an evil
creature.”

At that moment a voice rang out from the Techno Knight into Seren of the future’s head.

“Do not try to stop him. He is you indeed, but he must be purified by me. Stop the
Emperor, that is what you came here to do. And that you must do.”

Seren touched the statue, and the cavern burst into flames. Seren escaped, pulling the
unconscious body of his past self out of the cavern. The twins quickly cast a water spell
to quell the fire.

“So this is how I survived. Saved by myself…” Seren said.

Vyral, Seren’s old sword began to glow a luminous GReen.

“Do you think…do you think it wants me to take it?” Seren said.

“Yes. Take on your old weapon, and use it valiantly this time,” said Ome Sumac.

Seren took the sword, Vyral, and carried his burnt past body to the side of the ocean.
Then, the seven of them left.

There was one other Techno Knight that had been unearthed, and Seren was determined
to get its power before the Emperor did. All seven of them entered the cavern, and Seren
touched the statue.


                                            90
                                                                                     9
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1


Water burst from the ceiling above, and soon all of them were surrounded by ocean.
The current pulled and tugged at them, taking them somewhere…but they did not know
where. When the seven of them awoke, they were laying on the beach shore of the island
of Damon, outside the city of Glaw, before its ruin.

The city of Glaw had an air to it like London. It was a foggy, old town. Once primarily a
port city, its residents now lived off of the many myriads of fish that lived in the water
outside the continent. Seren had decided that they must find his past self before Domon
attacked and destroyed the continent.

The residents talked little, although one did mention of a limitless power locked away in
the Island of Mystics. Another mentioned a stranger that washed up on the shore, who
was staying for free in the Inn. When they arrived at the Inn…

“Seren, are you awake?” Seren said to his past self.

“Are you talking to me? Who am I? Why am I here? What’s going on?” past Seren said
to future Seren.

At this point the royal guards entered the room with a stretcher, with instructions to carry
Seren of the past to the castle for medical treatment. He had been so bruised and beaten
up from the fire that the two no longer looked alike and the soldiers didn’t take notice to
the fact that they were, fundamentally, identical. Future Seren had no choice but to allow
him their transport.

When the seven arrived at the castle, Zoko was waiting in his private quarters.

“You must be Seren from the future…. are you not?” Zoko asked.

“Indeed, I am. I am here to stop my past self from assisting the Emperor in his plans of
world domination,” Seren of the future said.

“I am sorry son, but you cannot change what the fates have ordained for you in your life.
The past Seren will execute the Emperor’s will, no matter what you tell him or how you
try to change his mind.”

“Then what are we to do?” Seren asked.

“You may try to stop the Emperor in this time period, before he unlocks the powers of
Sore. That is your charge, you should follow it through to the end. Now I must go follow
through with mine.”

In that moment there was an explosion heard outside. Zoko dashed towards the window
and leapt from its edge, and the story began to play itself out over again. A fiery missile



                                             91
9
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

struck the side of the castle, just missing Zoko’s room, engulfing the room in magical
flame. All seven of them soon found themselves trapped, surrounded by flames, and
running out of air. They struggled against the fire frantically but one by one lost
consciousness. When they awoke, Seren of the past had disappeared.

Bruised, scraped but no worse for the wear, the seven of them left the ruins of the Castle
of Damon, and outside met an injured sorcerer who approached them, saying,

“When the tower of Sore and its City of Mrobid were created they were linked to the four
elemental islands, each at a corner of the world, that hold balance in the land. The seal on
Sore is bound by those four islands. In order to modify the stages of Sore, one must
reproGRam the crystals at those four islands. Your Emperor is visiting those islands as
we speak, trying to reproGRam the crystals. He is at the Island of Ice in the north east
right now. You must stop him…. ugh…” the sorcerer said those words and then lost his
shape and became a tiny crystal. The spy crystal, that gave Seren and his companions the
ability to cast the Clairvoyance Spell.

Seren absorbed the power of the spy crystal and gained its spell. With it, he could see
anywhere in the world by simply closing his eyes and thinking about the location. And he
used this ability and saw the Emperor trudging through the glaciers of the ice continent,
in search of the ice crystal that controlled the ancient elven tower of Sore.

The seven of them had been exploring the ruins of Glaw when they found a tunnel that
led deep underGRound. At the bottom of the tunnel they discovered, by good fortune, a
large dirigible docked. This was Zoko’s secret escape vessel, in the case of destruction of
Glaw, he and his top councilors could escape on the blimp and go to wherever they
wanted in the world. With Zoko surely dead, Seren and his companions had no problem
borrowing the blimp.




                                            92
                                                                                     9
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

The Ice Continent

The party piloted the dirigible to the ice continent and landed it upon the edge of the
largest glacier, where Seren claimed he had seen the Emperor traveling. After a strenuous
trip through the icy mountains, they found a small cavern embedded in one of the
glaciers. Inside, there was a narrow path that led through the ocean waters, and at the end
of it a mammoth pyramid forged of ice. Atnd at the top of the structure, a small
tabernacle.

Seren had been in lead, but when they entered the tabernacle he suddenly came to a halt,
causing everyone else to lose pace. Inside, a roaring, colossal, elden water dragon stood
guarding a brilliant crystal orb.

“I am the guardian of this crystal. No living being, elf nor human nor techno knight may
approach it.”

“Dragon, we need to reproGRam that crystal before Emperor Blade does. He wishes to
resurrect Sore.” Seren said.

The dragon laughed preposterously, “No man can touch this crystal. And to resurrect
Sore the Emperor you speak of would have to destroy this crystal. For only through its
destruction can its binding on the tower to another universe be broken.”

“But surely I did see him walking this way, could he have given up and went to another
island?” Seren asked the dragon.

“I turned another man away from this crystal. He came with the look of malevolence in
his eyes. I knew it would not be in our fortune to allow him to touch the ancient relic, just
like every other human, man or woman, who has sought it,” the dragon said.

At that second, high above in the clouds, the Emperor’s airship had targeted the crystal
with its positron cannons. They fired, and a beam of energy burst through the roof of the
tabernacle, striking and shattering the crystal.

“Blade! Damn you…” Seren said.

“It appears I have failed at my mission. If that man succeeds in destroys the other three as
well, the world fall into a state of immeasurable devastation,” the dragon said.

The tabernacle, no longer supported by the magic of the crystal, began to melt away and
seawater was flooding the shrine from all directions.

“We have to get out of here!” The twins cried.

“I will carry you on my back away from this glacier. It is the only way you will escape.”


                                             93
9
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]


The elden ice dragon Geebin carried them away from the glacier, through the ocean’s
tides, to a small island along the coast. He stayed with them, because he knew that their
mission was important and that he no longer had a purpose with the crystal he had failed
to protect shattered. Geebin had taken a smaller shape; more tolerable for humans. The
eight of them were cooking dinner when an airship appeared overhead.

“Is that the Emperor?” asked the twins.

“No…I think that is OUR SHIP!!” Seren said.

The airship landed and out came the Damonian captain of the blimp, Knickerian. He
explained that he had taken off shortly after he saw them escape on Geebin’s back, and
followed them to this island. All of them finished their dinner, then made camp.
Tomorrow’s target would be the Island of Fire, in the northwest. That is where Seren had
seen the Emperor’s Airship heading next.




                                            94
                                                                                      9
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

The People of the Flame

Geebin could not stand the heat of the island, and had decided to stay behind on the
airship with Knickerian. The island of flame burned with a thousand fires, unbearable to
all but the most hardy of travelers. Seren searched and searched, but he could not find the
Fire Crystal or the Emperor. Then, either by chance or fate, often it is difficult to discern
between the two; the GRound gave way beneath the seven of them and they fell into a
cavern surrounded by flames. In front of them was a long, well-lit tunnel. At the end, the
tunnel opened up into a GReat hall. Along the cavern walls were mud-colored stone
pillars, burning torches, and ceremonial swords and shields protecting family crests, long
gone. And built within, at the end of the long hall, in a cave worn away by some
megalithic force millennia past, was a small town, with both people and homes.

The people that lived below the Fieye Island had once known a powerful magic. They
had called it simply enough: fire magic, that was, until at one point, long ago, they
mysteriously lost the ability to use it. The fire of the forever burning village, as it was
called, only burned outsiders; the villagers till retaining some of their power over it,
passing through it easily and unscathed.

At the end of the GReat hall was a small castle built into the earth. Inside, the Fire
Master, as he was called, lived. He challenged the seven to a duel, to which he quickly
lost. And behind his throne was an old passageway. It led to a tabernacle, where the fire
crystal was kept.

Seren reached out his hand, and touched the ancient elven crystal. Suddenly, the flames
of the island, all of the flames, were simultaneously extinguished. Seren slipped the
crystal into his pocket, and the seven of them returned to the airship. They made their
way to the desert island, to the ancient sanctuary of the wind crystal.




                                              95
9
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The City of Witches

The desert continent was nothing but endless sand dunes, as far as the eye could see.
Seren had used his clairvoyance powers to try and locate the crystal, but all he could see
was one of the local creatures, called SandFangers. They landed upon the island, and all
eight of them wandered through the desert searching for an entrance to the sanctuary.
Many times the creatures known as SandFangers would rise up out of a whirlpool of sand
to attack them. The last time, a huge SandFanger (a King SandFanger) rose up and began
to attack them. Although they killed it easily, the whirlpool it had created was too strong,
and it drug the seven of them deep beneath the sand and into a small cavern filled with
shifting sand. At the end of the cavern was a tiny tunnel, about four foot high, and the
eight of them traveled through the tunnel only to find it open up into something none of
them had ever seen before.

They had emerged on to a cliff-side overlooking a GReat gallery. A massive
underGRound city lay unfolded before them. And they stood at the entrance of a large
tower. Inside the tower was the sanctuary of the crystal. Seren slipped the wind crystal
into his pocket, and as he did this writing upon the walls of the sanctuary began to glow.
It told the story of a race of witches that once lived in the city below. It told of their rise
to power and their demise. They left the sanctuary, to find another tunnel. This tunnel led
uphill, and then out from a small rock on the surface in the middle of the desert.

After a few hours, Knickerian spotted them and parked the airship nearby.

“You are forever getting stranded. Next time, I go with you. The airship responds to
remote proGRamming, I can summon it from wherever we end up” Knickerian said. He
then joined the GRoup on their crusade.




                                              96
                                                                                     9
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

The Forest of Elves

The last crystal was located in the forest continent to the south-west. It was here that the
earth crystal, and the last living race of elves, resided. The nine of them entered the
enchanted forest, and traveled for miles, until (via Seren’s clairvoyant guidance) they
discovered the sanctuary of the earth crystal.

Seren quickly took the crystal, when suddenly a roar came from the heavens above. Then
out of nowhere, the two appeared.

“Hand me your crystal orbs Seren, or I will wipe you from the face of this planet.” Blade
said.

“Haha. Yes. Kill them all.” Demital said.

“I don’t think so. I’m stronger than you and I’ve got three of the crystal orbs. You’ve lost,
go back to your castle and pout” said Seren.

“We will have to do this the hard way then…” Blade said.

Out from the sky a beam of fire and lighting shot down and struck Seren. He fell back,
seriously wounded, and the three crystal orbs rolled out from under his cloak.

Geebin arose along with the others and approached the Emperor. His gils turned a fiery
red, and in his eyes was a look of intense hatred.

“Give us back those orbs…You have no choice.”

The emperor raised his hand, and a second beam of fire and lighting shot down, striking
Geebin. But Geebin remained unharmed. Meanwhile, Knickerian was fooling around
with his remote device for his own airship. He pressed the button, and his own energy
beam sped down, striking the Emperor, sending him reeling backwards into a tree.

The three crystal orbs were lying on the GRound between the seven warriors and the two
sinister enemies. Tech Demital leapt forward and touched the fire orb. Suddenly, flames
burst among the trees and on the GRound. The forest began to burn, and in the confusion,
Tech took the three crystal orbs and shattered them upon the GRound. Knickerian
reached for the automatic transport button on the airship remote, and the seven of them
found themselves aboard the airship, high above the now burning forest of elves. And in
the distance, they watched as Sore began to rise from the ocean. In this world line, the
Emperor didn’t release the mech from beneath the ocean. In this world line, the Emperor
simply broke the seal on Sore the old fashioned way. And in his world line, the Emperor
was also succeeding.




                                             97
9
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Secret Underwater Passageway

While flying to Sore to stop the Emperor from releasing Bahamut, the party encountered
a dangerous storm, which through them far off course. When the sky cleared they were
high above the Imp Kingdom, with almost no fuel left in the airship. They decided to
make an emergency landing on the continent, with hope that they would be able to gain
assistance from the bizarre imp creatures.

The Imps talked of a mountainous continent where a village of dwarves lived, and a
secret tunnel that ran between their continent and there. The leader of the Imps was
surprised to find that with the translator device Seren still had in his possession, he could
understand every word they said and vice-versa. In exchange for the translator, the Imp
King said he would let their human prisoner, named Sinto, free and he could escort them
to the island where the dwarves lived. The dwarves may be able to forge a new crystal to
power their dirigible.

The tunnel went deep beneath the ocean, and emerged momentarily on an island called
Doom Island. There was a castle there, locked, known as Doom Castle. It was a
mysterious structure that not even the Imps knew a thing about.

They continued on their way, going back under the sea once again, until they arrived at
an opening in the tunnel by a beautiful waterfall. A path led down from the waterfall to
the shoreline of the dwarve’s continent. And their in the high cliffs of the island lay the
city of the dwarves.




                                             98
                                                                                      9
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

The City of the Dwarves, Revisited

The City of the Dwarves stood high along the cliffs of the island. It was filled with
miraculous feats of technology, the likes of which had never been seen by most. Their
mines reached deep into the depths of the crust of Terra, and the spires of their buildings
reached high above the peak of the mountains. Truly this was a city unlike any other, and
the small village that Seren and companions had visited in that other timeline was nothing
in comparison. Here the party found a young dwarf named Dwaton, a friend of Sinto’s,
who told them of the world that was the present….

“Sinto, old friend! Who are these travelers who accompany you?”, Dwaton.

“They are travelers from another time…they have been on an adventure through time and
space, trying to prevent the destruction of Terra.”, Sinto.

“Haha….who could possibly destroy our beloved planet?”, Dwaton.

“The Emperor Blade seeks to gain ultimate power by activating the Tower Sandre. This
gentleman is named Seren, in his time, the Emperor has already done so.”, Sinto.

“This is quite serious. How may I assist you travelers?”, Dwaton.

“We believe in this time we have arrived in, Sore is in its second stage. The emperor is on
his way to Mystic Island to bring it to stage 3, the final stage, when it transforms into the
tower Sandre, and all life on this planet is extinguished. We need to get to Mystic Island
to stop him.”, Seren.

“Let us speak to the Elder and find out if he knows what the quickest way to Mystic
Island is from here.”, Dwaton.

The GRoup visited with the Elder of the City of Dwarves, who told them of a gateway
that lay in the Volcano Palace to Mystic Island. To reach it, they would have to take a
ship to the shores of the Volcano and then venture into its lethal depths. Dwaton aGReed
to be their guide, and after a long night’s rest, they left the shores of the Dwarve’s Island
towards the Volcano.




                                             99
1
0
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The GReat Volcano

Along the way, the party sailed over a shallow point in the ocean, in which they saw the
flooded ruins of the GReat castle of Damon and its surrounding city, Glaw. Seren bowed
his head in solitude, and they continued sailing. They soon arrived at the Volcano,
disembarked onto its black beaches, and watched as the ship sailed back into the horizon.

They ventured through the winding tunnels for hours, the intense heat pressing down
upon them. They then reached a massive chamber, with a land bridge arcing over a pool
of fiery lava. Suddenly, the GRound below them began to quake violently, the lava rose,
and they dashed across the bridge. They found themselves in a small forked tunnel, with
one road that went up and one that went down.

“Hurry! Dwaton, which way?”, Seren

“To the left, the tunnel that slopes up.”

They entered the tunnel but found it blocked by boulders…

“Now what?”, Sinto.

“We must go back and find another way”, Dwaton.

But…upon their attempt to return they discovered the land bridge had been swallowed up
by the volcano.

“We must escape…there is only one way. Follow me, quickly!”, Dwaton said.

The party rushed into the tunnel that lead down, through steam vents and flame, and soon
found themselves in a small chamber. Before them lay four stone pillars, with energy
arcing between them, and in the center a seemingly bottomless pit.

“Why did you bring us here? What is this?”, Seren said.

“It is our only way out…we must go down…Follow me.”, Dwaton said.

Dwaton lead the way, jumping into the pit, at first he dropped quickly, then the energy of
the pillars slowed his descent to a gentle fall. The others followed in turn. They fell, and
fell, and fell, at a leisurely pace, down hundreds of feet. Then they landed, one by one, in
a small cavern, with no way back up.

“Dwaton, where exactly are we?”

“The underworld, the home of the Dwarves.”


                                            100
                       1
                       0
      [FANTASY SAGA M] 1




101
1
0
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]



Journey to the Underworld of Terra

The party exited the cavern they had fallen into to find themselves in a much GReater
cavern. To even call it a cavern is an understatement, for it extended beyond all visible
sight, for miles into the distance. Its ceiling was so high above it could not be seen, all
that could be seen was darkness. And the entire cavern was lit by a red glow that
emanated from the streams of molten rock that flowed through its floor. In the distance, a
mighty castle almost as massive as Domon Castle, but of dwarven architecture, loomed.

“Ahead is the capital of the Dwarven Empire. We will go there and speak with the King
about what must be done.”, Dwaton said.

“Why have we never heard of this place before?”, Seren said.

“This place is sacred to our people, it is our GReatest secret. No being other than Dwarf
or Keeper is allowed to venture into this realm. If they do, there are dire consequences.
Let us hope the King is understanding.”

“What is a Keeper?”, Seren said.

“Ancient beings…older than human or dwarf. They were the first to step first on Terra,
and now they sleep underGRound to guard the GReat Vice.”, Dwaton.

“GReat Vice?”, Seren said.

“The GReat Vice is the remains of the Comet. Long ago it burrowed into the depths of
the Earth. It has immeasurable powers, far more vast than any of its fragments that have
been found on the surface. You will learn more about it and the Keepers in time…”,
Dwaton said.

After a strenuous walk, the party reached the Dwarven Capital. Despite the fact that they
were not supposed to be in the underworld, the dwarven guards seemed to pay no
attention to them.

Dwaton said, “This is peculiar. The King will know more.”

They reached the entrance to the throne room, and the guards stood aside. “We have been
expecting you”, they said.

“GReetings surface dwellers. I am the King of the Dwarves, and despite our customs, in
this time of urgency I welcome you to our realm.”, the King said.

“Then you know of the Emperor’s plans?”, Dwaton said.


                                           102
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     0
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3


“Indeed. We have known for some time. We have a craft which can travel through the
air, smaller than an airship, thus it can fit through the fissure in the world and reach the
upper world. We will allow you to use it on your quest, but first, I beg of you, we require
your assistance.”, the King said.

“What could be so important?” Dwaton asked.

“I will show you...Rest, for we will be traveling tomorrow.”, the King said.




                                            103
1
0
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Village of Vice

The next morning, though it was hard to tell if it was morning or night because of the
persistent red glow that pervaded throughout the underworld, the party left along with the
King of the Dwarves. After a few hours journey, they arrived at a small town set afire.

“What is this place?”, Seren asked.

“This town was once a GReat fortress. The fortress guarded the remains of the comet.
The pieces on the surface are miniscule compared to what burrowed through the earth
and landed here.”, the King said.

“Why does it burn and why are we here?”, Seren said.

“The village burns because of the dark energy of the comet. Its power has slowly eroded
the sacred walls that protected the village and the rest of the underworld from it.”, the
King said.

“I want you to do battle with the Comet.”, the King said.

“Are you insane? How can I defeat a power that leveled this planet?”, Serens said.

“You must do this. You will never be able to defeat the Emperor unless you GRow
stronger. He is vastly more powerful than you. If the comet does not kill you, it will make
you immensely stronger. It is your fate.”, the King said.

“Seren, you must. Listen to the King, he is the wisest of all of us.”, Dwaton said.

Seren turned, and entered the fiery village, prepared to die in battle.

Inside, he found people still alive, healthy as could be. They told him they were the
descendents of the Keepers, but did not have their powers and were helpless. They said
only a GReat power, something much GReater than them, could awake the Keepers from
their endless slumber.

Outside the chamber that held the remains of the Comet, the portion known as Vice,
stood two descendents who guarded the chamber.

“Welcome destined one. The ancients sealed these doors long ago. If a power GReat
enough strikes them, the seal will be broken and the Keepers will be released.”, the first
guard said.

“The power bestowed upon those who do battle with the Comet transforms according to
the person’s nature. A good person will gain powers that will benefit the world through


                                             104
                                                                                      1
                                                                                      0
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

good, an evil person will gain powers that will harm the world through evil.”, the second
guard said.

“Strike the door!”, they both said simultaneously.

Seren raised his sword into the air, and lower it, crashing into the doors. The metal
vibrated, and the vibrations spread throughout the entire underGRound. A soft
whispering sound permeated the air, and the doors opened of their own accord. Seren
stepped into the chamber.

And there before him stood a massive sphere, glowing in red light, and all of the room
swayed and rippled unnaturally. Then a quiet voice appeared in Seren’s head….

“Welcome. I have had dreams of you for a long time…Seren of Serenity”, the voice
sounded like Seren’s father.

“Is that you? Dad?” , Seren said.

The voice turned to a screech and began to laugh malevolently. Then it said,

“I am Vice, the Omen, the one of many names. I crashed into this planet long ago at the
direction of another. I lay waste to life, and curse all those that interfere with my plans.
You have my power in you, I AM A PART OF YOU. And you are a part of me. How
dare you challenge me!”

The sphere began to change shape, from its sides sprouted arms and legs made of the
same alien material, and from its top sprouted a head of sort, with a gaping maw. It rose
from its crater, and dashed towards Seren. Seren tried to use his magic against it, but
found it was completely ineffective. He drew his sword, and slashed away at the comet,
but every wound vanished in a matter of seconds. A black portal appeared above the head
of the comet, and it slowly sucked the life from Seren. Finally, Seren, with his last bit of
energy, screamed in pain, and it was in that moment that Seren of Serenity died.

The comet, satisfied with itself, began to change back, when the King of the Dwarves
entered the room. The comet reeled back, and then sprouted a dozen eyes, which all
directed towards the newcomer.

“I cannot destroy you, demon, but what I can do is change you into something less
harmful.”, the King said.

“You have no power over me.”, Vice said.




                                             105
1
0
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Yes I do. Unlike Seren, I draw my power from the Earth, not from you. I am the last of
the Keepers of old. Now the others are awake as well, and we shall wage a war against
you and all of your influence upon this world.”, the King said.




                                          106
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    0
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

The Keepers

Seren awoke in a pit, where Vice had once been. Sitting in the pit lay a bizarre looking
emblem, somewhat alien in fashion. Next to him was the King of the Dwarves, smoking a
pipe and smiling.

“What happened? I thought I was going to die?”, Seren said.

“Nevermind that. We have more important business to attend to. We need to awaken the
Keepers with that emblem in front of you. Let us go.”

“But why are we awakening them?”, Seren said.

“Because, the craft I spoke of before is not in the Underworld. It is high above, and only
via the GReat elevator can we get to it. Nobody has used the GReat elevator for centuries,
and its location is unknown. The Keepers will know how to reach it.”

The King lead Seren into a remote room of the village. Within, they found a chamber
made of pure ivory, covered in ice. In the center of the room was an adorned pillar, and to
its left and right statues made of ice and ivory.

“Place the emblem into that pillar Seren.”, the King said.

Seren fit the emblem into a small depression in the pillar. Two divine spirits rushed out
and into the statues. Then a voice began to speak….

“Is this a false alarm? We must return to our sleep. When the world is in danger, we will
awaken”, the voice said.

“No, please don’t go back to sleep. We need your help!”, Seren said.

“Who are you and what do you wish from us?”, the voice said.

“We wish to return to the surface through the GReat elevator”, Seren said.

“The surface is ruined. Are you not aware? You would not survive should you make it to
see the stars once again. Not even I, Wisdom, can make that happen.”, the voice said.

Then a younger voice chimed in. “Nor I, Courage.”

Then a third voice followed, “Nor I, Power”.

“I am willing to risk going to the surface. Is there any way?” Seren said.



                                            107
1
0
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“You must travel to the Magmus Tower, in the world below the Underworld. It is the
world closest to the Core of this planet, and is known as the Core World”, the voices said.

“It will take GReat courage.”

“It will take GReat wisdom.”

“It will take GReat power.”

The statues courage and wisdom vanished in an arc of electricity, and the electricity
flowed into the Dwarf King.

Then the third voice, Power, began to speak through the Dwarf King. The Dwarf King
turned to Seren and said, “We are twofold, the Keeper Power, and the King of the
Dwarves, two men in one body.”

“Why weren’t you trapped in here with the rest of the Keepers?”, Seren asked.

“Because, we, being the most powerful of the three Keepers of Vice, were meant to rule
over this world. Now, where Courage and Wisdom were are plaques, take those plaques
to the elevator beyond this room and travel down, far down, into the Core World.”

So Seren, along with his companions, ventured into the elevator, prepared to enter a harsh
new place, known was the Core World.




                                           108
                                                                                        1
                                                                                        0
                                                                       [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

The World Closest to the Core

Although the planet Terra is much like our own, it differs in many ways. One way in
which it differs is the nature of its darkest depths. For in the regions closest to its core, an
acidic substance of an unknown nature flows about, circulating through and around its
core, so potent that it can eat through solid rock and metal.

After a treacherous fall, the elevator landed upon a small island, floating in a sea of acid.
Seren leapt from island to island, until finally he reached a continent of sorts. Meanwhile,
he looked back to watch the island he landed upon, as well as the elevator, slip into the
acidic ocean, forever lost in a sea of death.

Seren continued to wander until he came upon a large aluminum structure situated upon
the deserted wasteland. The structure had a gaping hole in the side of it, and Seren
decided to look in and investigate.

He discovered a strange array of tubes and LCD screens. After approaching one of the
LCD screens, a robotic voice echoed through the structure.

“All depot destinations are unreachable except for Last Stop Depot. Operating on
Reserve Power. Unable to perform destination transaction.”

In the far side of the room was an aluminum ladder, that apparently lead up further into
the structure. Seren decided to continue up the ladder to explore.

Seren found himself outside the structure. Knickerian looked around and said,

“It appears to be some sort of transformer. I think I can repair it and we can get power to
the teleporters below. At least enough for one transaction.”

Knickerian climbed up to the top of the GRid and got to work. Suddenly the support that
you and Knickerian are standing on snaps, and all of you fall off of the transformer. You
land on an aluminum platform.

“Ouch…give me a hand Seren, I’m going to climb up and try again.” Knickerian said.

But before Knickerian can begin to climb up, a spirit appeared in front of the party.

“I’m sorry, but I cannot allow you to reach the power supply.”

Seren and his companions battled the spirit, and after defeating it the spirit split into three
entities.

The first entity spoke and said, “Very strong.”


                                              109
1
1
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]


The second entity spoke and said, “Very brave.”

The third entity spoke and said, “You may proceed.”

The three entities were projections of the three keeper’s of vice: power, courage, and
wisdom.

The party continued climbing up the tower. At the top, the water dragon Geebin
discovered the switch was shorted out. Knickerian decided to fix it. Sparks flew out all
around and once again, Knickerian fell off the tower to below. However, now the power
was on and the party made its way down to off of the tower back to the transaction depot.

When the rest of the party reached inside, Knickerian was working away at one of the
terminals, fully recovered from his fall…

“Everyone ready? I’m going to activate the teleporter. The only destination available is a
location labeled ‘South Town’. Let’s hope its not a dead end…”

All of the party members took a spot on the transporter pads and Knickerian gave the
activate command. Suddenly everyone was whisked away to another part of the Core
Land…South Town.




                                           110
                                                                                      1
                                                                                      1
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

South Town

The South Town ruins were not much of an improvement over the last place they had
visited. Old pieces of pavement that had once formed roads were worn away into dust.
Barrels of chemical and nuclear waste lay abandoned in heaps. And the sea of acid
flowed through, carving away at the little land mass that was left of the continent. As the
party wandered through the wasteland that was once South Town, Seren accidently
knocked over a barrel filled with a bizarre purple chemical waste. It poured out of the
barrel and intermixed with a puddle of acid nearby.

The chemicals churned together and began to react and out of the puddle arose a giant
blob and two smaller blobs. They spoke, saying…

“I am Nukage,” said the large blob in the middle.

“I am Nikige,” said the two small blobs to the left and right of Nukage.

Knickerian said, “They seem to be some sort of radioactive acid. I think the easiest way
to defeat them would be to make them solid.”

Seren tried casting all sorts of spells, but Nukage and his siblings GRew even more in
size and were healed of all damage. Finally Knickerian suggested an ice spell. Nukage’s
color turned to a blue tint. The more times ice was cast on him, the more purple he
turned. Finally, when all three were solid purple, Seren struck all three with his sword.
The two smaller blobs shattered and when Seren struck Nukage, there was an explosion,
tossing all the party members to the side, and leaving a massive crater filled with boiling
acid where the enemy once stood, and leaving little room on the small island for the party
to stand.

The remainder of the island began to sink into the acidic sea, and all the party members
had to leap to a nearby island that was more pillar than island while the voice of a the
keeper, “courage”, whispered in the air, “Have faith in yourself…” As the party leapt
over the divide, an pillar of acidic flame shot up, nearly scorching them. They then had to
leap onto two metal beams that lay falling into the acid ocean. Finally from there they
leapt onto a small stable island. From there they continued on, crossing island after island
by way of small, ancient, stone bridges. Then one last gigantic bridge, known to the
ancients as the Magmius Land Bridge. This lead to the continent of Magmius, where
Magmus Tower stood surrounded by a massive force field…

“So..this is Magmus Tower,” Seren said.

“It controlled this entire civilization at one time,” Knickerian said.

“How do we climb it…? There are no stairs?,” said Seren.


                                             111
1
1
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“Incredible! Look up Seren! It must act as some sort of generator. It is projecting energy
up into the cavern ceiling. I would guess that each city that used to be here would then
extract that energy down from the top of the cavern,” said Knickerian.

“How do we get up?,” asked Seren.

“Follow me. I think you have to hit these switches…” Knickerian said.

Knickerian hit the two switches at the base of the tower, and as he did so, a series of
staircases materialized in the center of the tower.

Magmus Tower was a large, Aztec like pyramid, consisting of a complex series of
escalators, rooms, switches, and portals that intertwine throughout the tower. After
navigating all of these successfully, the party reached the top, where five energy coils
used to project energy into the ceiling of the cavern. Knickerian begins working on some
circuitry in a small panel on the floor of the top level of the tower. When he completed,
the coils turn blue and shoot energy into the sky. The earth below begins to quake, and
the whole southern continent begins to fall away except the tower.

“The tower’s foundation in the pit won’t hold long at this rate…we need to escape now!”,
Knickerian shouted.

The party takes the elevator down to the base level of the tower. Beyond the tower is a
broken old glass dome covering the ruins of a city called Kharma, a.k.a. North City.
North City was once one of the largest settlements in the Core Land. Huge buildings fill
it. Including buildings like libraries, halls of records, bars, GRocery stores, etc..
Everything you would find in a modern day city is in North City. A broken down,
useless, Tran Depot lay at the entrance. Also, a building marked “Hall of Records.”

Inside the Hall of Records…

As Seren enters, an image of the Keeper of Wisdom appears.

“We dwarves are all distant descendents of the elementals who once lived here…”, said
Wisdom.

“After living on the surface for centuries, they had been forced to retreat to this Core
Land. A GReat war above had caused a permanent frost on the surface, a nuclear winter.
Many remained here, but the continents in the Core Land were constantly changing
shape, dividing, rising, and sinking. They couldn’t remain for long lest their civilization
be consumed. For over many years they built the Magmius Tower to harness the power of
the planet and try to bring balance to the core below. The core itself acting like a natural
battery, with its chemical reactions along with the magnetic power of the core generating


                                            112
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     1
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

power on the level of millions of nuclear blasts. Eventually, a massive acid tsunami
extinguished all remaining lilfe, including sentient, in this city. Those who survived fled
using the Tran Depots. All that is left of their civilization now is a few ruins and
Magmius Tower.”

“Now that you have heard our tale, my final gift to you is the knowledge of our native
language…it will let you use the records database as you please…”, said Wisdom.

Seren queried the database and this is what he saw…


--Ship Log: Traveldate 54329 C.L.—

Seren sees a pyrimad shaped ship traveling through an eerie blue vortex in outer space.

--Ship Log: Traveldate 56329 C.L. --

The pyrimdal ship lands on a molten planet and burrows deep into the surface.

--Town History—

The records screen shows a pyrimad atop an island in the core land and people leaving
the pyrimad.

“First was the miGRation from our homeland and its tyrannical government”, says the
narrator.

The records screen shows a huge triangle of energy floating above an island.

“Our next GReat accomplishment was the creation of a GReat triangle, through which we
could travel through both space and time.”

The records screen then transitions to another city on another island.

“Once upon higher GRound we began construction of a new city. Unfortunately, our
triangle was lost forever in an acid tsunami.”

The records show a triangle with a crystal at each point.

“Only by using three small crystals from our homeland could we sustain the triangle.”

The records show a foreign solar system.




                                            113
1
1
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“It leads to a place beyond most beings comprehension. A place outside of our universe
and its spacetime dimensions. Once in this place we could go anywhere, anytime, without
worry of the constraints of our native universe.”

The records show a series of conjoined continents covered in cities on the surface.

“Over time our cities GRew. We were living upon the surface and soon our civilization
covered the planet.”

Then the records show the planet covered in ice.

“There was war. The planet froze over, and we were forced to return to beneath the
surface.”

The records show the core land, with the Magmius Tower, etc…

“We have established many wonderful cities to live beneath the surface, until we can
restore the climate above.”

--Journal Log 6453 C.L. –

“We have discovered the acidic properties of the liquid down here that makes the energy
we extract from the core so plentiful, is actually slowly eating away at the continents we
live upon. A tidal wave has hit Magmius Isle, killing millions. Another wave has hit East
Town and one has hit South Town. We are next. Our only hope is to escape through the
Tran Depot stations.”

After watching the videos, the party leaves the Hall of Records and enters a nearby
building.

Inside the building were two terminals, similar to those in the other building. At the far
end of the room was a large computer screen. In front of each terminal was a human size
tube, filled with a bizarre GReen liquid, with bubbles flowing through it, reaching high
up and through the ceiling. The surface of each tube was covered by a strange, permeable
plasma membrane. Meanwhile Knickerian was inspecting the terminals.

“This is amazing. It connects to all of the other cities. A sort of interconnected network of
knowledge,” Knickerian said.

“Can it get us back up to the surface?” Ether asked.

“If there is any way, it well tell us,” he replied.




                                              114
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    1
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

Knickerian strode up to the terminal and began fiddling with the controls. A picture
appeared on the monitor before him and it began to speak,

“Teleporters lead to various designated teleportation locations. Teleporters can be found
in the teleportation room.” Knickerian fiddeled with the controls a bit more.

“Command accepted. All teleporters are now operational.”

“The power GRid allows the city to access power directly from the major power source,
the Magmius Power Generator.” Knickerian nodded his head in acknowledgement and
his fingers danced across the control board again.

“Command accepted. Power has been reactivated within city limits.”

“Command rejected. Please note, certain passageway doors are currently protected by the
security system. Manual override is necessary to unseal or seal those doors.”

“Query accepted. The bypass elevator leads to the power room only.”
“Query accepted. Escalators may be used for manual floor travel.”

“Let’s take the bypass elevator up to the security reserve generator. If we shut off power
from that, the security system will be without power and we will be able to freely access
the elevator and teleporters.”

They made their way to the elevator to head towards the reserve generator. While they
were in the elevator, it suddenly began to jerk and then began to enter free-fall.

The elevator landed on the first floor, along with the adventurers it was carrying and
crumpled causing a loud crash sounded through the room. Fortunately, they exited safely
with just a few cuts and bruises. Knickerian waited behind for a few minutes while they
others went ahead in order to examine the state in which the elevator was in now. He
quickly caught up with them.

“It’s trashed. The only way out is to disable the security system and use the main
elevators. Hope this works.”

The security reserve power room had two huge cylindrical upright tanks that had a
continuous arc of electricity conducting power through the air into the ceiling above.
Knickerian commented, “It appears the coils on the generator are damaged causing the
power to flow in reverse, back into Magmius Tower. Something must have reversed the
polarity on these tanks in all of the cities. That is why we only had enough power to
telerport once at the trans depot. Magmius Tower is still operational and generating
thousands of Gigawatts of power, but once it reaches any one of these broken generators,
all the power is routed back into Magmius Tower, from whence it came.” In the center of


                                           115
1
1
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

the room was a small access panel. Knickerian used a peculiar small, screwdriver like
device to disable the security beam, and began to examine the panel next to it.

With their work done, the party returned to the elevator shaft. “How will we get to the top
floor with the bypass elevator smashed to bits?” Seren asked.

“Simple. I can override the system and we can bring down an emergency elevator.”
Knickerian replied.

Knickerian opened the access panel and after changing a few wires, the emergency
elevator came down and settled gently atop the bypass elevator. The party climbed over
and through the broken elevator and into the emergency elevator. “Now, we have to
finish the job and shut off the generator. Follow me,” Knickerian said and he hopped into
the emergency elevator.

They arrived in the security reserve generator room. It consisted of a small closet with a
large cylindrical tank. On the front of tank was a switch. Knickerian pulled the switch,
and a voice sounded on the PA, “Security Reserve Generator disabled.”

They took the emergency elevator to the main complex elevator control room. The room
had two large switches it took two men to pull, each guarded by a security beams that
Knickerian was able to disable using his device. “These switches have been thrown,
locking down all of the main passageways in the beginning. With the security reserve
system down, all we have to do is reset these switches and we have free access to the
main generator,” said Knickerina. He, along with Seren, reset the massive switches.

“Passage lock down terminated,” the PA system announced.

“We need to fix the polarity problem on the power GRid if we ever want to get out of this
part of Terra and back to the surface. Let’s head down to the sub levels, that is where the
power core most likely is, along with the root of the problem…” Knickerian said. And
they took the elevator to the basement…

The reached the very bottom level of the station and as they exited, the steel door
slammed shut, ceiling them off from the elevator. The sub floor was much different than
the upper floors. It was old, much older than the station. Gone were the metal vestiges of
modern technology, replaced with etched stone and carved, auburn GRanite. They had
entered shadowed ruins, much older than anything they had in their lives ever seen.

Ahead of them lay a long stone bridge that lead further into the darkness, and below the
bridge a vast abyss whose darkness was only broken by the gargantuan stone ruins that
rose out of it, covered in archaic symbols. As they crossed the bridge a GReat serpent,
titanic remnant of some Jurassic age, coiled around one of the archway shaped structures
peaked out of the murky depths of the chasm. They walked further and settled onto a


                                            116
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     1
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

little island at the other end of the bridge. As they did so, the bridge behind began to
crumble away as if it was never there at all. Seren tried to turn back protest, but they all
new that it was too late and the only direction was forwards. They stepped now onto a
second bridge, that appeared to lead into a blank stone wall. As they passed through the
wall, it seemed as though reality itself was ripped away. Behind them they could still see
the chasm and its ruins, but ahead of them where the abyss had been, was vortex of
electricity and blue light. And on an island ahead of them, floating in the void was a
humongous, alien looking, construction. A reactor.

Deko. It was the name the ancients who first stepped foot upon Terra gave to the magical,
life energy of the planet. Like the energy that had fused into the people of Terra by the
crash and subsequent explosion of the alien comet. But different. Not filled with hate.
Not filled with spite by its nature. Not the dark energy of the life force of criminals and
murders. It was something pure and powerful, much stronger. It was the power that the
Keepers could wield, a power towards good, a power that is always stronger than evil.

The Deko reactor was in the shape of a maroon, metallic, bulbous axe-head with its blade
facing downwards. At the elliptical top was large human like eye, with a white pupil
surrounded by black iris, that looked to the left and to the right. In the center of the
reactor were archaic markings, with a large triangle etched into it, and a smaller triangle
within that. At the bottom were more markings, and small console embedded in the
shape. Huge plasmatic tubes connected the sides of its body to the “blade” shaped part of
it. And two large plasmadic tubes connected the bottom of its body into pits in the
island’s floor, resembling some sort of set of queer legs.

As they approached, Knickerian spoke first, saying, “Be careful, this machine has most
likely been damaged. I’m sure it had to shut off some of the power flow due to the
damaged polarity of the grid, resulting some of the power to flow back into this cavern.
That is why reality seems warped where we are standing. We have to be very, very
delicate, the slightest thing could set it and our entire universe awry.”

Knickerian approached the machine’s console and began delicately working with the
controls. Suddenly, the albino white eye of the machine turned red, and along with it the
entire cavern. A blue beam shot forth from the center of its pupil, as the pupil began to
spin wildly, looking this way and that around the cavern. Everything began to shake, and
Knickerian shouted above the commotion, “Come on, we have to get out of here!
Everybody run!”

In the abyss below the machine, a half-sphere of blue plasma, filled with the essence of
tiny stars, with electric bolts arcing across its surface, began to expand upward towards
the island where they stood. The party ran to the second island, right before where the
false stone wall stood. They continued to run, and making it to the fallen bridge were
pitched forward by the shockwave of the blue half-sphere colliding onto the cavern shelf
that the elevator stood upon.


                                            117
1
1
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]


Knickerian screamed, “We can’t wait for the elevator to descend. We’ve got to climb and
climb fast. Hurry!”

The door flew open by means of Knickerian’s multi-purpose device, and they scrambled
up through the top of the elevator into the shaft and began to furiously climb up the
escape ladder. They kept climbing, as the blast came closer and closer. They made it to
the elevator room. Then there was a rumbling, and everything went black.

When they awoke, they were in a small room carved out of the mountain rock, with its
earthy walls decorated in crystals and blue vines coated in diamonds. Next to the
wounded party was a pit, no doubt the pit they were fortunate enough to be propelled
through by the blast. And in the center of the small room was a platform with an arcane
symbol upon it, and a shaft of blue light illuminating it from its base to aperture above.

Knickerian said, “We made it!”

Ether said, “Yes! We did?”

Knickerian said, “Yep. Now to find the airblade.”

The beam transported them into another cavern, the walls halfway covered in metallic
plates. It appeared to be similar to the earthy cavern they had just come from, and the
technology packed rooms in South Town, like a sort of hybrid of the two. In front of
them, encased in crystal was an old man with a monocle, dressed in robes. Knickerian
turned to Seren saying, “I believe this is your job, we will need his help.”

Seren reached out and touched the crystal with his fingertip. As he did, a wave of warmth
began to pass through it and the crystal melted away like ice on a hot day. The old man
formerly imprisoned within, wiped his eyes, opened them, and then let out a big yawn.

“Ah…thank you for giving me my freedom and life once again. I’m sure you are
wondering how I became imprisoned in this chamber. It was one of my own magical
experiments went wrong, and I have unfortunately been trapped here ever since!” the
man said.

Seren asked, “What is your name?”

“Of courses, of course. My name is K’need. A good Terran name. But that really isn’t
important. Follow me. Or…wait a second.” He raised his hand into the air, and a ball of
green light spread out from his index finger. The cavern transformed into a South-City-
esque room, complete with terminals, monitors, and metal grated floors. On the floor was
a large valve, which he promptly turned, and then continued speaking. As he opened the
valve, as door opened in the room’s north wall.


                                            118
                                                                                      1
                                                                                      1
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 9


“Now…. Welcome to my lab, how can I be of assistance to you?”

The party entered the adjacent room, which doubled as a large dock for Kneed’s various
experimental vehicles. In the center of the dock sat a small, futuristic, fighter-jet style
plane. Knickerian said, “Ah..the airbalde?”

Kneed asked, “How did you enter the cavern where I was imprisoned?”

Seren replied, “An arcane symbol, some sort of elevator…”

Kneed replied, “Hmm...an elevator? I may have put one there and forgotten. From where
may I ask did you take this elevator?”

Seren replied, “We journeyed from the Core World, via Magmus Tower.”

Kneed replied, “Hmm…I don’t remember ever visiting a Magmus Tower. But then again
my memory is bad these days. I am interested in what this tower does. Could you show it
to me?”

Seren replied, “Our mission is urgent.”

Kneed replied, “If you will take me to this Core World I will give you the Airblade as
payment. I am guessing by your inquiries concerning it that you require it.”

Seren replied, “We cannot. Magmus Tower fell into the sea.”

Kneed replied, “Well then. For what reason should I give you the Airblade?”

Knickerian muttered under his breath, “maybe because we freed you you ungrateful old
man…” As he did so, the lab, and the island it sat in, began to quake.

Knickerian shouted, “No! Damn. The Tower of Sore must be entering another phase. I
wish we could destroy that damnable thing.”

Kneed said, “Hmm…Sore is active. That cannot spell good for any of us. Come, follow
me. We must to get airborne.”

The party crossed the dock to the Airblade. Kneed shouted, “Hop in! The Airblade is
truly a technological marvel. It can travel in virtually any liquid or gas, be it air, water,
magma, or even that nasty acidic liquid near the core. And it is compact, so it can easily
maneuver through tunnels and caverns easily. Also, another nice feature, is that it using
its reality warp it can fit virtually any number of things into it…but I’m babbling…”




                                             119
1
2
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The island shook again and Knickerian yelled, “Come on!”

Everyone hopped in and the plane took off, navigating nimbly out of the dock and
through the cavern into the broad daylight. When they had become air borne, Seren
looked through a porthole in the Airblade’s cabin to see that where they were leaving was
Mystic Island and it was slowly sinking beneath the waves. Kneed was in control of the
ship. Seren asked him, “Kneed. That is where we needed to go! Where are we going?”

“Not anymore. We need to go underground while Sore transitions through phases. It
causes the whole damn planet to go haywire. Ironically enough, the only safe place is
beneath the ocean’s floor. When it is finished we will return to the surface. Trust me,
you’ll know when it happens. And anyway, I would like to see what’s left of this
Magmus Tower of which you speak.”

Knickerian and Kneed talked and Seren sat back, rolled his eyes, and enjoyed the ride.




                                           120
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

The World Closest to the Core…Again

The airblade jetted through the air, then took a nose dive into the ocean. The turbines
went from shooting through air to shooting through water and propelled them through the
undersea world. After a few minutes the approached a huge trench in the ocean’s floor.
Kneed said, “Hold on everyone!” and the airblade turned its running lights on and dove
into the trench. Kneed navigated through the dark chasm and after a few minutes they
found themselves in the underGRound world of the dwarves.

“Locking in.” Kneed said.

“Locking in on what?” Seren asked.

“Let’s see what this thing can do. Launching missles!”

Two missles shot out from the base of the plane and collided with the stone cavern floor
near the villager of vice. An explosion echoed outwards, the shock wave rocking the
nearby village, and the cavern floor around the collision point collapsed revealing another
chasm. Kneed rocked the control stick and the plane dove into trench, dodging jagged
outcroppings along the edges of the tunnel, barrel rolling this way and that. Kneed
activated the protective shield on the plane, and the plane headed straight towards the
core, the jagged outcroppings dissolving when coming in contact with the shield. The
world around them GRew dark.

When light returned, it was the eerie, unnatural light given off by the acidic oceans of the
world closest to the core. The first stop was massive crater Knickerian had nicknamed the
“Deko Crater.”

The airblade teleported the crew down to the edge of the crater. After some maneuvering
they found themselves at the edge of the crater and the party began scaling the wall down
into its depths. Along the wall of the pit they found a narrow tunnel, which Knickerian
insisted on entering. The tunnel lead to the ruins of a terminal room with an adjacent
tunnel blown into the side of it. Kneed examined the terminal controls and said, “Nothing
here appears salvageable, lets continue down through there” and pointed to the adjacent
tunnel. They continued through the adjacent tunnel, that had been worn away by the
acidic liquid, and found themselves in another terminal room ,this one with a teleporter.

“The teleporter still may work. I might be able to reconfigure it to teleport us to the
Knowledge Center that Knickerian spoke of. I will be able to find out more about this
Magmus Tower there. Follow me,” Kneed said. He walked to the teleporter, tinkered
with its innards, and then strode over to the computer. After pressing a few buttons on the
control deck, the teleporter gleamed with light.




                                            121
1
2
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Hop on!” said Kneed. They soon found themselves teleported to the ruins of the
Knowledge Center in North City.

“Terrific. This computer is a wreck. I doubt if there is a single circuit working on it,”
Kneed said after examining the knowledge information gathering system n the
Knowledge Center.

“Kneed, we might be able to access its data from somewhere else. The network this
terminal operated on used to be accessible from anywhere in this realm,” said Knickerian.

“You’re right,” replied Kneed.

“”All of the cities were connected by the network I spoke of. The information was
actually passed along through the power system, so that any device that required power
had access to it.”

“So, first we will need to make certain the power is working correctly,” replied Kneed.

“Ugh…” Seren said.

Kneed approached the terminal, and entered a few commands. A hidden door slid
halfway open in the back of the room. “Help me move this,” Kneed commanded. The slid
the door back and entered the room.

The portal led to a maintenance access cavern below the building. They went through the
cavern and soon found themselves in the main elevator room, where they had taken the
elevator down to the Deko reactor. The elevator was no longer there to take to the Deko
Reactor, so they were forced to take the elevator cable down the shaft to the cavern
below. When they reached the bottom of the shaft, they found that the entire cavern had
been hollowed out by the earlier blast, leaving only a small ledge on the cliff to rest upon.

“Look down there, the reactor is floating mid-air at the bottom of this pit!” Seren said.

“We are going to have scale this cliff down to the reactor and inspect it. Follow me,”
Kneed said. They climbed down along the wall of the treacherous cliff and reached the
floating reactor which was suspended high above a massive metallic sphere, lit by the
energy of the reactor.

“My God….You were right Knickerian, the energy flowing back through the network is
so intense it seems to have ripped a hole in the fabric of reality…” Kneed said.

“Yes…sending the reactor into a place in between, almost outside of, our own existence,”
Knickerian said.




                                             122
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Reality was warped about the reactor. Space seemed to sway back and forth, at times like
it was breathing and had a life of its own. Bolts of blue electrical energy arced this way
and that, and jets of plasma shot into and out of existence. The reactor itself was clearly
damaged, possibly beyond repair. The “reality warp” of the reactor had GReatly
expanded beyond before, and took up the majority of the cavern.

“So, this reactor…it used to draw power from this void?” Kneed asked.

“Yes. Almost. The magnetic core draws its power from the void, and acted as a conduit
for the reactor. If we reverse the polarity, it should send the extra energy back through
that sphere you see there, the magnetic core, and back into the void. ..Hopefully, the void
will close after that,” Knickerian responded.

Kneed and Knickerian leapt from the cliff and then as the approached the reactor, their
fall slowly GRound to a halt. They swam through the empty space over to the reactors
control panel and began working. They completed their work and swam back to the cliff.
The swirling red energy beam coming from the eye of the reactor vanished, and the fabric
of reality slowly returned to normal. The reactor, no longer suspended through the power
of the void, plummeted into the darkness.

“Fixed. Let’s go home,” Knickerian said.

On their way out of the core world, Kneed had casually mentioned that he had a gift for
Seren that would make his journey much easier, if he would aGRee to accompany him to
one more place. Seren had asked for details, but Kneed insisted that it was “vital to his
journey” and that he could “say nothing more at the moment.” So they proceeded to head
to North Town, where Kneed insisted another, more reliable, Knowledge Center existed.

The GRoup of them, Knickerian, Seren, Kneed, and Ether teleported down to the shores
of the North Town ruins whilst the air blade hung hovering in the air above. They arrived,
with Kneed leading, and clambered across the debris, from floating island to floating
island amidst the sea of acidic waters. They came upon a small building, aged and
collapsing, and Kneed lead them inside. Once inside they made their way to the top level.
On the highest floor was a massive terminal, the largest they’d seen, covered in archaic
ruins and surrounded by fallen pillars and pedestals covered in similar ruins.

“This terminal is the oldest,” Kneed pointed to the massive device in the center of the
room and approached it.

“From here I can get root access and access the central network. It is the inner most layer
of the world-wide network.” He entered a few commands into the keyboard and shrugged
his shoulders. “Damn. The monitor is broken. Maybe if I take this monitor over here and
and wire it into…”




                                            123
1
2
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Kneed fiddled with a few wires in the panel behind the terminal, and then gave out a
triumphant “Viola!”

“Welcome. Would you like to learn about the Station’s Commands? Read the central
network’s logs? Learn about the town history? Or maybe you would like to learn about
Trans Depots?” the computer echoed.

“We would like to read the central network’s logs please,” Kneed replied to the machine.

“I can tell you more. Please pick the subject area of your search. I can tell you about
crystals, the GReat underGRound pyrimad, space station machina, the sky pinnacle, the
sea palace, and many more things…” the computer replied.

“I’d like to learn about the crystals for now please…on a private screen.” Kneed replied.

“Hey! What about us?” Seren exclaimed. A small holoGRaphic screen just the size of
Kneed’s eyes appeared in front of him, for his viewing only. After a few minutes they
vanished. Kneed turned to the rest of the GRoup and said, “We need to get out of here
now. Another tidal wave is coming, like the one that destroyed Magmus Isle. And it is
headed right for where we are standing…Come on, Now!”

The party left the building and in the distance they heard a rumbling. The cavern’s stone
ceiling arced with electric bolt. Kneed pressed a button on his belt and they found
themselves magically teleported inside the air blade, hovering above North Town. As he
had predicted, a huge tidal wave of that acidic substance that filled that world’s oceans
came tumbling over North Town, and as the ocean settled, nothing was left in its wake.

When they had finished watching the destruction and the aftermath settled in their minds,
Kneed turned to the rest of them. “Incredible! Our own past, present, and future…all of
our lives contained on a single computer.”

“What?! Is that what you saw on the central network?” Seren said.

“Yes. They followed our time stream. The computer had knowledge of all events going
into the very distant past up until the very distant future. That is how I knew about the
tidal wave.” They all then aGReed they didn’t want to know anything more about what
Kneed saw. It was too dangerous. All of them GRew quiet, and then finally Seren spoke
up,

“We need to get to Sore before its too late.”

“Maybe not yet. Remember what I said? I said I had something helpful for you. It is in
my lab. Let us go there.”




                                            124
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     2
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

“But we saw your lab sink into the ocean?” Ether inquired.

“Yes, but remember my friend, our craft can travel underwater!” Kneed said,
unnecessarily proud of his own, well-known, accomplishment.

The air blade leapt straight upwards, through a crack in the ceiling of the core-world, now
a realm with little value, and emerged deep beneath the surface of the oceans of the
surface world. While they traveled Kneed continued narrating the generics of what the
central network had told him.

“The logs said the people who lived down there created a gateway outside time that took
the form of a triangle, no doubt the same gateway you traveled through, Seren. They used
a special sort of crystal to create it and control it. If my memory serves me correctly, the
Techno Knights also used a crystal made from the remains of other Techno Knights to
open the same gateway once.”

“For what reason?” Seren asked. Knickerian looked intrigued.

“To stabilize it. They entered briefly, slipped the crystal made from the remains inside,
and used the crystal remotely by magic to open and close it as needed,” Kneed answered.

“You mean they could travel through time??” Seren asked.

“Of course. How do you think they…” Kneed cut himself off and then changed the
course of the conversation.

“We are here. I’ll tell you more inside.”

They teleported into Kneed’s Mystic Island Laboratory. Once inside, Kneed continued,
“Eventually somehow they lost the small crystal that controlled the opening and closing
of the triangle. The triangle will react to the slightest burst of energy if timed right, and
large bursts of energy are guaranteed to open it. Any major change within the time stream
will open it completely, so it takes up an enormous amount of space.”

They strode through the laboratory, in a part they had never been in before. Kneed placed
his palm on a crystal wall, and a door materialized and opened. They room they entered
was a rectangular shaped room, similar in appearance to the other rooms, except for the
fact that to the left and right of them were bizarre terminals composed of crystal and
metal and covered in runes. And on the very far back wall was an elliptical doorway large
enough for a person to pass through, but made of teeth that spiraled in towards the center.
“Those consoles. They look similar to the ones in the core world! Not identical, but they
appear to be made with similar to technology..?” Knickerian said perplexed.




                                            125
1
2
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“That is because I am of the same blood as the Keepers who miGRated to the present day
UnderGRound Kingdom of Dwarves. We Keeper’s ourselves were ancestors of those
who lived in the world you call the core world. Although my knowledge is not as
extensive as theirs, the technology I create with it is similar. I left the underGRound
world and came to Mystic Island through my GRandfather’s tower.”

“You’re the GRandson of a Keeper?” Knickerian asked. They all were shocked, although
Ether was the least shocked.

“Yes. The Dwarf King is my father. And now enough with the family history, let me
show you what I want to let you use Seren.”

Kneed went to each console and pressed a few buttons. Then he stood in the center of the
room. A red, thin, beam of energy swept across his body and then vanished. The spiral
doorway in the back of the room slowly GRound open and another beam of energy the
diameter of the doorway was released, focused towards a spot directly in front of where
Kneed stood. In that spot, a tiny prism materialized, and then the beam vanished.

Seren and Knickerian approached Kneed and both asked, simultaneously, “What is it?”

“This is my ultimate creation!” He laughed somewhat maniacally. “It allows any person
to open and close the Temporal Triangle as he pleases. It effectively is… a time
machine!” he exclaimed. The others looked at each other.

“So let’s get going already! We can go back in time, again, and this time stop Blade from
resurrecting Sandre.”

The four of them returned to the air blade. Inside Seren asked, “So…how do we use this
prism?”

“It is best if you do it in the air where there is the least bit of intervening matter. We don’t
want to send chunks of earth or water flying through outside of time. It is bad time travel
etiquette. Another thing, the opening will only be big enough for one person to enter.”

“I cannot stop him on my own!” Seren said.

“It is ok. When you get inside you will have to commune with the crystal in order to
travel wherever you plan to travel. Just tell the crystal you need us transported as well.
You’ll understand when you get there… Hop on out and good luck!” Kneed said and
Seren found himself teleported into thin air, overlooking the vast ocean.

“Woaaaaaah!!!!!” he yelled as he plummeted through the air. Suddenly, a sliver opened
in the fabric of reality below him, and he slipped outside of time and everything went
black.


                                              126
                                                                                      1
                                                                                      2
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 7


Seren found himself in the vaporous world of in-between worlds. In front of him was
massive crystal, the biggest he had ever seen. It stretched for miles below and above
him, to the point where it was hard to discern its shape. It glowed once, then ceased. Then
again, a bit faster, then ceased. Then faster and faster it blinked until it was a solid glow.
In Seren’s mind he heard Kneed’s voice saying, “Where you can picture we can travel
Seren…”

Seren closed his eyes, pictured himself flying in the air blade with all of his companions
against the tower of Sore in its intermediate phase, where it floats high above the ocean
with pieces of the world floating about it, to lead a final assault on the tower against
Blade. As he did, he felt a solar wind flowing around him: in his ears, then in his eyes,
then in his mind, then in his soul. His eyes twitched, he opened them and suddenly he
was thrust back into time and space.

He was in the air blade, and every one of his previous companions he had journeyed with
was along for the ride. Bewildered, he watched the scene around him.

“Seren, good to see you are here,” Kneed commented with a smile.

“Finally he’s here,” Intee commented.

Seren gathered his wits and asked, “How will we get in?”

“We are going to blast our way in!” Knickerian replied.

“There are subterranean ruins in the base of the tower that lead up to the main portion.
They will not be well-guarded. We can make a base there and prepare for our attack,”
Kneed replied.

Before them in the sky floated a massive island, with Sore scaling upwards from the base
of it. Around Sore stood a partially constructed Sandre, the final form of the deadly
tower, archaic and evil in the image of the Emperor, magically constructing itself at a
snails pace up and around. In front of the tower was the city of Mrobid and on island
floating adjacent to that, floated all the chunks of civilization on Terra. One island
contained the city of Glaw, one the city of Domon, one the castle of Damon, one the
castle of Domon, on another city that lay beneath the flames of fire island, and so on….

The air blade made for the main island, diving and dodging the enemy mechanized air
force that came as a package deal to the controller of Sore-Sandre, barrel-rolling when
necessary to avoid enemy fire. Then Kneed let loose the air blade’s missles, blasting a
hole in the main island large enough for them to crash land the air blade. They teleported
themselves out




                                             127
1
2
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“All right Seren, go through the supplies and arm the men. Some of us will remain to
follow my technical construction plans so we have a more stable base of attack. Also in
case, I hate to say it, some of us don’t make it. When you are ready we will begin the
assault,” Kneed said to Seren.




                                          128
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

The Assault Upon Sore

Seren had gathered all of his companions and all of those he had met along the way who
were eager to help in the battle. They made their way up through the subterranean ruins
fighting the monsters and technological nightmares unleashed upon them by the tower
under Blade’s control. It was taxing and by the time they had reached the surface they
had already GRown weary. A single staircase led from the ruins into the towers surface
structure. When they entered they were amazed by the transformation in scenery. Their
surroundings went from archaic stone carved ruins to metallic panels made from some
unknown mystical ore, elevators glowing with LEDs and electronic keypads and other
things of the sort, and fields of plasma protecting secure areas of the tower. Electronics
terminals were scattered throughout the tower, with holoGRaphic displays. And high-
watt power conduit tubes, encased in plasma-substance jutted this way and that. The
tower was like a gigantic lightning rod, Kneed had explained, and acted as a conductor
for all the life force in the world, sucking it into one location and moulding it into
whatever the controller of the tower wished.

They decided that there main avenue of attack would be two-fold. Blade would likely be
at the controls of the tower. Instead of attacking Blade head-on, they would try to shut off
the power flow of the tower, rendering it useless, and then go after Blade. This way he
wouldn’t be able to use the tower against them when they finally decided to go after him.
To do this they would have to turn on the manual override switch at the bottom of the
tower, this was easy as it was near their base, and turn off the manual shutoff switch that
was at the top of the tower, near the main energy conduit. Unfortunately, to get to the
manual override switch at the bottom of the tower, they needed to shutoff the shield
generators. Kneed could do this easily, if it weren’t for the fact the controls were at the
top of the tower near the main energy conduit. Needless to say, it wasn’t going to be easy.

They climbed GRueling after GRueling floor of the tower, slaying inhuman creatures that
were obviously creatures of Blade’s dark and twisted imagination. Each floor more
deadly than the last, they finally made it to the very top floor of the tower and there a
creature more deadlier than any other they had faced was waiting for them.

The creature had the head of a dragon and the body of a man. Its face was like a twisted
form of Seren’s own, and it from its broken speech the beast seemed to think Blade was
its father. They fought against it, but when Seren came to deliver the final blow he
couldn’t. The injured creature turned tail and ran, no doubt, to inform its master of the
intrusion.

They took the sliding doors out to the roof of the tower, and marveled at the clouds, the
sky, and the sun. Below them the ocean was blue, seamless, and infinite. All of which
hadn’t been sucked up by Sore to help construct Sandre was sunk deep beneath the ocean.
There were no continents, no islands, nothing.



                                            129
1
3
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Here it is,” said Kneed referring to the shield generator switch. He waved his device
over it and the shield’s inside the tower were turned off. On the other side of the roof of
the tower, the manual override switch sat nestled in an alcove, arcing with deadly plasma.

They finished their reflection upon the roof and returned inside the tower. There hearts
leapt in shock, and then plummeted in despair, as they stood face to face with the one
who had caused the world so much pain. And next to him, his second in command, Tech
Demital.

‘Hey there, look who it is. Seren, right? I heard you were on a campaign to kill the
Emperor. I guess I’ll just have to slit your throat right here….” Demital said.

The Emperor looked weary-eyed and anGRy. He shoved Demital to the side and then
began to speak,

“Seren my son, come to me. Look at what I have accomplished. I have reconstructed the
most powerful device in history of this world, maybe in the history of the universe. I
couldn’t have done it without your help. Will you join me?”

Seren drew his sword, and leapt at the Emperor, blade aimed for his throat. The Emperor
waved his hand and Seren fell instantly to the floor. The others charged at him. The
Emperor put up his hand motioning “stop”, the tower buckled, and time froze for
everyone but Seren and the Emperor.

Seren raised his head, still injured upon the floor. The Emperor looked down at him and
said, “You know that you are my son, don’t you? You fell, that day, long ago when we
were training up in the sky.”

Seren looked in his eyes and saw sadness, pure sadness. He looked down and the
Emperor knew.

“We fell into different times. I fell much further into the past than you. I awoke upon the
beach, just like you did years later. That’s how I knew how to find you. I fell into the era
of the Thousand Year War, much before the time of Damon and Domon. I built up the
empire of Damon, crushing the Citadel Knights, stealing the knowledge and building the
heart of my empire overtop their worthless monestary. I used its secrets to create the
symbiot, so that I could have ever lasting life. So I could I find you. And I did.”

“No!” Seren screamed.

“Come. Join me. We can rule as Father and Son.”

“No!!!!!!!!!!!!” Seren screamed. He screamed so hard his veins popped out in his arms,
he screamed so heard his blood began to boil, and then the magic in him that was latent,


                                            130
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    3
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

that was part of his bloodline as part of the royal family of Serenity triggered something,
something else….something beyond his control.

Seren stood frozen, just like the others, except it was part of his own doing. Somewhere
deep within his mind he had called upon HIM. Out of his body a flaming figure stepped,
it GRew larger than Seren, until its head had touched the ceiling. From its left hand
emerged a sword made solely of flames. The flames sculpted themselves, they took form,
and became the shape of a giant suited in red armor, the flaming sword became a scimitar
tinged red with fire licking about its edges. On the sides of either shoulder long horns had
GRown, and a pair of pitch-black wings unwrapped from his body, opening and closing
harmoniously, methodically, and nefariously. His eyebrows were cast gold and his pupils
made of pearls, in their hearts the fires of hell. M had GRown stronger over time, and he
now felt he was ready to do what he needed to do.

M raised his sword and stepped toward the Emperor, who was still in shock.

“What are you? Where have you come from?”

M swung his sword, aiming for the kill. The Emperor stepped in and out of space,
slipping through reality, teleporting himself just in time to dodge the blow. Then,
realizing he had bitten off more than he could chew, he closed his eyes and decided to
power up the tower full blast, albeit prematurely.

Blade began to glow, the tower conducting the life force of the planet into his single,
somewhat human, mind. As he did so, M was slowed down and felt as if walking was
like wading through water. Blade, knowing the effect wouldn’t last long, continued to
dodge M’s strikes with his eyes closed, whisking himself from spot to spot and then as
the tower reached full potential, Blade sighed. He opened his eyes and a silver sliver of
reality opened up and melted away. He had opened the Temporal Triangle around Seren.
The slivery of reality wrapped itself around Seren and M and closed back up, whisking
them away to another time. They were whisked away to a time when Blade had already
won in his quest for world dominance.

Blade sat down to catch his breath and gather his thoughts. He was not sure if this would
do, but it was the best he could do. He hadn’t expected Seren, or M, to become so
powerful in such a short time. Seren’s companions, and Tech Demital, were still frozen
around him. He contemplated what to do about his companions, and decided to have
Demital take care of them. Blade turned around, waved his hand, vanished, and time
began to go forth as usual.

 Seren’s companions, and Tech Demital, continued on with their previous movements as
if nothing had happened, but ceased them as soon as they noticed Seren, M, and Blade
had vanished. They looked about confused and then crying shouts of revenge on both
sides, began to attack each other once more. Demital unleashed furies of fire and energy,


                                            131
1
3
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

wreaking havoc on Seren’s friends. One by one they fell down injured. Finally, when
Demital was ready to deal the final blow of his deadly power, Seren’s companions
simply vanished from sight.

When Seren’s companions awoke, they were each lying upon a bed in a newly
constructed sick bay in the rebel base below Sore/Sandre. The plans had been followed to
the letter, including Kneed’s two favorite ideas: a teleporter able to locate the members of
any assault on Sore, and warning system to monitor their vitals. The nurse cautioned
them, telling them they needed their rest. Then they slept, for how long? None of them
could tell….

Seren awoke in a desert, face planted, nostrils filled, with the lifeless dust that sufficed
for soil in the age he was in. He got up, first upon his knees, then upon his feet, exhausted
and sore. He wiped his scratchy eyes and looked forward, into the horizon. Beyond him
was a volcano, and further, a tower, forged of black obsidian with billions of small, red,
glowing, circular eyes darting this way and that, the tower stretching up higher than he
had ever seen anything reach. It penetrated the clouds, and seemed to even pierce the
blackness of space and strike the stars.

“Ugh…where am I?” He asked, and shook his head.

“Could this be the distant future? Has Sandre fully risen? Has Blade…my father, won?”
He asked himself, primarily because there was nobody else alive on the surface of Terra
to ask.

“The Armageddon…it has taken place. That must mean, I’m in the future…where I was
born. Serenity is….I’m home.” He thought. Then a more determined thought took its
place, “I cannot abandon my cause…there must be a way to undo the damage that has
been done. If he could go back in time and create an empire…” Then he thought some
more.

“That caused an energy blast…that sends him back in time, who knows what the future
will hold if he keeps that power. I have to…. No, I must stop him at all costs. Maybe then
I will return home….to that place in my dreams, the island in the sky…Serenity.”

Seren looked up to the sky. In the distance, in front of a bloated red sun and GReen
clouds of poisonous vapor, there was dark shadow of an island. There the last refuge for
free life on Terra, the Kingdom of Serenity, to which his father was once King and
committed the treasonous act of war against the world, was floating there. It was his
home. He was determined to return there once Blade was defeated. What Seren didn’t
know, was he was destined to arrive there a lot sooner than he expected.




                                            132
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     3
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

The Technology of the Dwarf King

Seren trudged through the barren wasteland that made up the world he had GRown up in.
The volcano stood between him and Sandre. To go around it would take too long, Seren
had reasoned that he would have to travel through it no matter what. He had remembered
the many passageways that went through the volcano, honeycombed, like a bee hive. He
climbed up its exterior and peered up ahead. Near the peak of the volcano a rickety old
shack sat along a ledge. He wondered whom or what in the world would make their home
on a volcano and then let the fleeting thought pass and continued on.

Seren reached the top and to his dismay there was no entrance to the tunnels through the
volcano to be found. He peered into the horizon to Sandre once again, and then briefly
looked down into the mouth of the volcano. It appeared to be dormant for now. He turned
to step away and his foot slipped. Teetering over the abyssal pit at the mouth of the
volcano, the ledge suddenly to began to give way, and in an extraordinary act of fate, he
lost his footing and plummeted into the mouth of the GReat Volcano of Terra.

Far he fell, further and further into darkness. Until a red, ominous glow appeared at the
destination of his fall. Fearing his death to be incineration by he magma pit of the
volcano he scrambled in the air, only to discover his descent was actually slowing. Small
twinkles, like tiny stars, encircled his body, until his fall had GRound almost to a halt. He
gently was lowered onto the floor of what appeared to be a place he once visited before:
the UnderGRound Kingdom of the Dwarves. However, it had drastically changed.

To the west the burning village still stood, ever-burning as before with the vile energy of
the comet. To the north ran a field that appeared to have been once a flowing river of
magma. To the east, it appeared the castle of the dwarf kingdom still stood, although it
was much different. GReat pointed spires of silver obsidian punctured holes in the sky,
and walls made of an unknown GRey ore encircled parts of the castle. GRey pipes
carrying mysterious fluids snaked throughout the complex, and heavy exhaust vents let
loose all sorts of weird fumes. The castle had become a marriage of old and new
technology. But between the eastern castle and the western village, something new came
to Seren’s sight. A marvelous castle of unknown origin had been constructed. Seren was
closest to the old capital of the dwarves, so he decided to venture in to meet with the
king.

When Seren GRew closer to the castle he realized it was currently under siege. A sight he
had never seen before appeared: dwarves were killing other dwarves. Outside the castle,
tanks fired balls of plasma into the castle walls, which appeared to be protected by some
sort of energy shield. At the main gate, dwarves in red fought against dwarves in blue,
wielding swords, axes, laser pistols, and other such weapons. Seren slipped through the
combat and made his way through the courtyard into the main castle.




                                            133
1
3
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

In the main castle many dwarves lay around wounded, while the enemy dwarves raided
and took everything they could carry. Seren entered the throne room to find the king
seated upon his chair, chin rested in the palm of his hand, with a worried look upon his
face. As Seren approached, he looked up with surprise, and smiled, saying,

“Ah ha! GReetings Old Friend! I would offer you something, but as you can see we are in
the middle of a siege…”

“That is ok. Is there any way I can help?” Seren asked.

“Yes. They have killed our council of elders. We have one chance of winning this war
and fighting back. Follow me!”

The king stepped onto the platform behind his friend and opened a metallic door that was
nestled there. He stepped inside and Seren followed, ducking of course, and they walked
down a long passageway filled with steaming pipes, gauges, meters, metal plate floors
bolted to the GRound, and wires. Then they reached the end of the hall, which turned into
a small ledge that overhung a vast underGRound factory.

The platform they stood upon lowered magically upon the king’s command, with neither
tethers nor wires of any sort. The platform eventually locked into a series of catwalks that
hung over hundreds upon hundreds of dwarven tanks.

“This is one of our many tank docks. We have more tanks than operators I’m afraid. But
the reason we are here is that this tank dock contains our newest and most expensive
creation, our Omega Tank.”

“The dock is awfully big isn’t it?” Seren remarked.

“Not really. In fact, the Omega Tank barely fits,” the king commented and then chuckled.

“Now, as I was saying, the seven elders have been murdered. The rebels have been built a
massive fortress to the northwest of us, and we must begin a counterattack.”

The tanks were covered in a reflective, aluminum like material. Seren inquired, “What
are these tanks constructed of?”

“A special ore unique to our region of the world. It has the power to reflect magical
attacks directed at the tanks,” the king replied.

“The alpha prototype is not ready yet my liege!”, an engineer tried to halt the king
proGRess through the factory.




                                            134
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     3
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

“Well make it ready. I need it!” the king replied. The engineer nodded, mumbling
something like “yes, sir” in a disgusted tone, and stepped aside. The king lowered himself
down a ladder, motioning for Seren to follow. “Come now, let us show them what my
engineer’s can do! ” he said GRinning and nodding to the engineer he had just butted
past.

The tank below them was as large as one of our football fields, covered in the same
reflective ore as the others, and constructed with pristine dwarven craftsmanship.
Inside, futuristic gauges, dials, and computer terminals filled the interior. The tank was so
massive it contained two levels, a weapons level and a navigation level. The king told
Seren to head down to navigation while he handled weapons. Seren, confused, went
down to the second level.

The tank was controlled by arcane terminals similar to those within the info-centers of the
core-world. In the front of the navigation room were two large monitors sized to fit the
front wall. To the left of the room was a seat in front of an arcane terminal. This appeared
to be the navigation controls. In the center of the room was a teleporter with an arcane
terminal. This he had entered through into the navigation room. To the far right was a
small crystal encased in an energy field. Seren was not sure of its purpose, but was sure it
was beyond his understanding.

He sat down in navigation and the control instantly lit up, and commands entered into his
mind as voices only he could hear.

First, the Dwarf King spoke into his mind through his terminal,

“Seren, I need you to navigate us over the magma river to the front of the rebel base,
understood?”

Seren replied in his mind, “Yes.” The King said, “Good.”

Then Seren switched the monitors to display the front and back of the tank. He motioned
in his head for the tank to launch and travel to the rebel base and watched their proGRess
on the front two monitors.

The walls of the plateau that had been neatly seated behind the Castle of the Dwarves
exploded like they had been set off with dynamite, revealing a massive factory. It seems
the king had kept his tank factory in secret, constructed within the plateau. Now it was a
launching point for the Dwarf King’s arsenal. Then, a split second after the factory was
revealed, the rebel tanks fired again on the Dwarf King’s castle, finally crumbling its
outer walls. The dwarf king laughed a maniacal laugh through the telepathic intercom to
which Seren was attached. Seren was stunned as from amongst the ruins of the leveled
castle, a vast city arose from beneath, formed by technology Seren had only seen
glimpses of before, and that was while he was in the Core World. Glass skyscrapers in all


                                            135
1
3
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

sorts of odd shapes, connected by walkways surrounded by tubes, connected to other
skyscrapers. Buildings in the shapes of domes, octagons, and hexagons, all shining like
the galaxy. The King had been constructing this new city beneath the castle all of this
time, underGRound as a dwarf would, Seren chuckled. A massive dome shaped energy
shield sparked and then came into place around the city. The rebel’s attacks were useless.

“Now that we are safe let us squash these rebels!” the dwarf king chuckled once again.

The tank rolled to a halt before the rebel fortress. The rebel tanks fired beams of
electricity, and fire, and all sorts of elements that simply reflected off the king’s tank and
into the GRound. The dwarf king’s tank’s massive barrel began to light up, bolts of
energy arcing from the base of the barrel to the tip, and a wave of yellow plasma, like the
surface of the sun, fired into the walls of the fortress and through the scores of enemy
tanks. Each melted into the cavern floor.

What remained of the rebel base was a small cubic building, not much bigger than the
rebel tanks. And around it the stone walls of the base melted and burned. A few rebel
soldiers remained standing around the central building, ready to defend it with their lives.
The dwarf king commanded Seren to teleport outside and defeat them. A few smaller
tanks had followed the mega-tank, and now dwarven soldiers teleported outside of them,
to help kill off the remaining rebels.

“Let us move forward into the center of the rebel base, and destroy all those that reside
within!” commanded the king through a loud speaker.

Seren lead the soldiers forward and they slew the rebels. Out of the cubic remains of the
base, through the large ornate door in the center, came their commander. Beams of
energy exploded through the doors to either side of the cube, slaying the Dwarf King’s
men. The commander vanished and reappeared behind Seren, GRabbed his mouth, and
quickly whispered in his ear, “I am GR, the head of the resistance. The king has been
taken over by another, possessed. It is the same being that took control of your father and
made him into the evil man he is today. We don’t have long, you have to trust me.”

Seren nodded, and GR teleported them to the door of the remains of the building.
“Quickly, inside!” Inside the ruined building was very little except a staircase to which
GR pointed, leading into god-only-knows-where, and Seren quickly followed. The
staircase led to a room with a lift. “Get on!” GR said. Seren hopped on, GR hit a switch
on the control panel and then teleported himself onto the platform. The lift lowered down
a long, dark, shaft that led deeply further into the underGRound of the underGRound.

As they descended, GR said, “This is our excavation site. We discovered ruins of a high-
tech base here decades ago. I think you may find it particularly interesting.”




                                             136
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     3
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

The cavern around them shook. Above, a massive explosion of fire and energy had
enveloped the rest of the rebel base, eradicating any trace of it, including the cube.

“I suspect the dwarf king has destroyed what was left of our base. No matter, now that
you are here. We have been waiting,” GR said.

The lift came to a halt in a small, poorly lit room. In front of them, was an ancient door,
covered in markings that looked hauntingly familiar to Seren. “It has been left over from
the time of the Armageddon, when Sore was initially activated and became Sandre.”

They entered, through the ancient door, and GR continued, “This room I constructed on
my own, using my particular talents.” In the very front of the room two cylindrical
holding tanks held a person-shaped crystal-like structure floating in each. Seren, curious,
looked to GR

“Only you have the power to free them. They were the only ones I could save from the
Armageddon. They were the two strongest. The rest are trapped within Sandre…” GR
said mournfully. Seren walked to each crystal, reaching out his hand, and placing his
palm on the holding tubes. Each tube, changed in color from blue to red, bubbles rose to
the top, and from the tubes, successively, Seren freed both Knickerian and Kneed.

The holding tanks drained of fluid. GR and Seren lay both Knickerian and Kneed on the
floor. GR said, “My implementation of the technology is not perfect. It is not like the
Techno Knights. I could preserve them, but not forever. It is a good thing you came when
you did. Now, until they wake up, let me show you what we actually have excavated.”

They took a platform down to the room below. Seren recognized it as the base they had
built beneath Sore. It seemed like it had only been days before, but in reality it had been
centuries. “This is the base we constructed beneath Sore,” Seren said.

“Good. I am glad you recognize it. We will need it. The king has been redirecting
magical energy from the core of the planet, and has been using it to power his demented
creations. The city you saw, the massive tanks, and the factory are all powered by the life
force of this planet.”

“…”

“You don’t understand, do you? It isn’t just energy. He is powering those weapons using
the souls of those who have died. That energy is supposed to go back into creating life:
plants, animals, fish, etc… But instead it is extinguishing life and is used up. The souls
aren’t recycled. They cease to exist. He is using the same technology as the tower
Sandre…but he hasn’t mastered it yet. You have to access his computer network and shut
it down. The city, the tanks, everything.”




                                            137
1
3
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“How do we get through the shield around the city?”

“We can use the base’s weapons system…” a familiar voice said.

“Knickerian!” Seren exclaimed.

“And then we can teleport him in using the transport system. Though the teleporters do
seem to be in pretty bad shape,” another voice said. Both Kneed and Knickerian had
awoken.

“One more thing. Seren, we did not kill his council of elders. He murdered them in cold
blood,” GR said, looking at the floor in sadness. “He sent you to fight me hoping I would
kill you. That is why he did not join you, but sent you alone. He had hoped, should I fail
to slay you, to kill you with the beam of that cursed tank. Let’ s get to work…”

Knickerian, Kneed, and GR began work on the base while Seren took a breather. The
next morning (though the time of day is always hard to tell while you are underGRound)
the work was complete and they were ready to launch the base.

“We are ready Seren,” GR knocked on Seren’s quarters.

“Launching navigation system in 5…4….3….2…1” GR said.

From beneath the cavern floor the base erupted into the air, floating above the floor of the
underGRound world of the dwarves, using the same arcane technology that had kept Sore
in flight.

“Weapons are fully functional, I’m ready when you are,” said Knickerian.

“Teleportation systems fully functional as well,” said Kneed.

GR turned to Seren, “Are you ready? We cannot go with you. We will try to beam you
back if you become injured, but there are no guarantees of safety. We will, however, be
in constant communication.”

“I am ready,” Seren said. The island floating in the middle of the underGRound world
fired a particle beam into the shields of the king’s city. The shields shorted out, and a
fraction of a second later, Seren found himself teleported from the base into a utility room
within the city’s power sector.

“That door leading to the reactor is sealed off by the security system. Follow my
directions,” GR said. Seren nodded.




                                            138
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     3
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

“Quickly, down into that access panel where you won’t be noticed. This plant hasn’t been
finished yet. It is designed to refine the core’s energy, doubling its potency.” Seren
slipped through the access panel into the ventilation system, and then, with GR’s
guidance, into a vast, empty, chamber that had been built below the city.

“On the platform below you is an unguarded terminal. Get its id number so we can beam
a virus to it and shut down the security system,” GR said.

Seren accessed the security terminal, but as he tried to retrieve the id number, the system
went on alert. Next to him materialized a neutralization robot.

“Unauthorized user, submit yourself for capture,” the robot sounded. Meanwhile, the
refinery’s network echoed over the loud speakers, “Security overrriddiididi”. Seren
chuckled to himself. “Unauthorized user, second request. Submit yourself for capture,”
the robot said,

Meanwhile, the central computer recovered somewhat and continued, “sealing all access
panels.” GR spoke to Seren, “You have to take care of that security drone and get back
out of the access panel you came through before it is sealed. It is the only way in or out of
there!”

“One minute until panels are sealed,” the computer echoed. Meanwhile the security drone
wheeled its way towards Seren, energy cannon aimed at his head.

“Final request. Submit yourself for capture or be terminated,” the robot sounded and
began charging its energy cannon.
Seren made short work of the security neutralization robot. The clock continued ticking
on the loud speaker. Seren ran through the service tunnels, with access panels shutting
one after the other behind him, and all the while more neutralization robots following.
Finally, Seren leaps through a pair of sliding containment doors, as a robot follows
behind. The robot only manages to get his head and hand through, head severed from his
body with a crunch after the doors closed, and hand severed and tossed across the room,
exploding in a small puff of fire.


Seren arrives in a small, fire damaged room, with a staircase into the upper level. Next to
him a vacuum hose, leading from the floor to the roof has been torn in two and is
spewing out fumes. Kneed begins to speak over the intercom,

“Head this way, through the doors to the upper level. The service levels below are sealed
off for good. No going in or out. I’ve turned off all power to the other service doors as
well.”




                                            139
1
4
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Seren climbed the staircase and went from room to room. Some rooms filled with
cylinders containing vile liquid and strange genetic materials, some with fluid based tesla
coils, and some with general maintenance pipings and electronic terminals. Finally, in an
exercise of irony and counterproductivity, at the very top floor was an cylindrical
elevator that lead all the way down to the large reactor core. It looked similar to the
unstable Deko reactor Seren, Knickerian, and Kneed had fought before, but clearly the
technology for this reactor was not as advanced. Seren was standing upon a large
rectangular walkway that surrounded a bubbling tube of energy. Where the tube and
walkway met massive conic base of electronic circuits surrounded the tube, in its center a
large control panel. Kneed spoke over the intercom again.

“It’s now or never Seren! We must destroy this refinery core. And it is but one out of
two.”

“Sword….bold and true…destroy the darkness!” Seren held Vyral up into the air and
dashed forward, driving the sword into the center control panel of the reactor.
The reactor began to GRow unstable and emit a beacon. “Run Seren!” Knickerian
shouted.
Seren ran to the elevator and took it all the way to the top, the glass elevator melting
away below him into the flames.

Seren appeared before the second refiner-reactor on the top level. Sitting upon a huge
rectangular column in a room filled with infinite darkness stood a duplicate reactor to the
first Deko reactor they had encountered. In an elevator shaft to the far left, opposite of
where Seren was, arrived the Dwarf King.

“No matter if you destroyed one or a million refining machines I will have another on its
way,” said the Dwarf King.

Kneed suddenly materialized next to Seren along with Knickerian.
“It is another energy extraction machine. This one appears to be even more powerful than
the one we destroyed in the Core World, built by my ancestors. It communes with the
one, the one in the Core, transferring its energy into it.”

“It is my GReatest creation. I call it, “Morhine-Magnos, the magnetic drainer! Now,
Magnos, destroy them!”

A triangular beam of light opened up and surrounded them. The machine tore away at the
fabric of spacetime and soon two of them were transferred to another realm, where
Magnos was able to exist as a living being, floating around in antiGRavity, attacking with
bolts and beams of energy of all sorts of colors.

“It has sucked us into…” Kneed said.




                                            140
                                                                                   1
                                                                                   4
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

“Some sort of parallel plane, where only energy can exist,” Knickerian said, finishing his
sentence.

“That means our bodies will soon be ripped to shreds,” Seren replied.

“Yes. Destroying the machine is our only option. There is no escape.” Kneed finished.

The machines gigantic, single, central eye started to blink and three beams, locked on
Knickerian, Kneed, and Seren began to drain them of their life force.

“Ugh…what’s happening?” Seren struggled to say.

“It is..dr….a..ining….us…of…our..magic…and…life…” Kneed responded.

“No….time….to…escape.” Knickerian said.

The three of them collapsed, and approvingly, the Dwarf King disappeared.

Then, miracously, two beams of light appeared behind the fallen three. Electricity
crackled within the beams and two voices echoed throughout the strange dimension…

“Kneed and Knickerian of Wisdom….”

“Seren of Courage…”

The beams hovered over the three warriors and they vanished. They appeared again back
in the dimension of the real. Strangely enough to them, because they did not know the
Keeper’s saved them, only the platform that had suspended Magnos remained, and above
the platform the gateway to the other dimension slowly shrank, and then disappeared.
The room and the floor began to shake. The computer echoed over the intercom,

“Self destruct commencing. T-minus 10….”

Back at the base GR was observing everything. With their mission complete, he pulled
the switch for the teleporter and brought Seren, Kneed, and Knickerian back to safety.

GR: “That was close!”

Kneed: “Well at least we took out their power source. We shouldn’t have to worry too
much about the Dwarf King for a while..”

Knickerian: “I hope not….”

Kneed: “Ether and the others are missing…”


                                           141
1
4
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


GR: “We will have to worry about them later. We need to get access to the Dwarf King’s
tank storage.”

“If we had an access card…” Knickerian said.

Seren: “Let’s run a search at the Info Center.”

Knickerian: “I just hope that machine cannot return.”


Info Center

Teleported into the info center in the Dwarf King’s base, Knickerian and Kneed tried to
patch into the Dwarf Kingdom’s computers to run a search on “Access Cards”.

“Kneed, I’m going to patch into the database and try and run a search on Access Cards.”
Knickerian said.

“Ugh access denied. Its heavily encrypted. I’m going to try from this terminal.”

“Got it!” Knickerian exclaimed.

“How?” Kneed asked.

“We have a backup ‘residential’ access card. That’s the best we are going to get for
now,” Knickerian replied.

“If we search the soldier’s quarters we should be able to find a restricted access card.
Good job! GR beam us into the residential quarters!” Seren said.

Seren, Kneed, and Knickerian searched the soldiers quarters until they came across a
room with a sleeping soldier. Seren snuck in and searched his bags, finding a restricted
access card. GR beamed them into the entranceway for the super tank repairs dock. The
three of them slipped past security and then into the main tank.

“We should take this tank to tank storage. Once inside we will have access to all the
kings military. Kneed you take nav controls, Knickerian weapons, and I’ll take
command,” Seren said.

The tank left the repair dock, under Seren’s command, and they wheeled it over to the
tank and weapons storage portion of the base. Once inside….

The dwarf king was seated in the center of the command ring.


                                            142
                                                                                  1
                                                                                  4
                                                                 [FANTASY SAGA M] 3


“You three escaped. Damn, well….not a problem. All the tanks have already been
deployed and sent out to fire at your base. This storage area isn’t of much use anyway.
And you won’t have any time to hack away at my computers either. Good bye and good
luck. Ha!” The dwarf king vanished, and as he left, the storage area locked into self
destruct.

“Damn, quickly, Knick and Kneed, contact GR and head back to the base,” Seren said.

The three were teleported once again back to the central base.

“Knickerian, Kneed, Seren!” GR exclaimed, “We are under attack! Hurry we must do
something!”

“Seren, men to your posts! Everyone! Open fire on the Dwarf King’s tanks!”

GR’s base fired down at the Dwarf King’s tanks, but their magical reflective armor
caused the energy attacks to be bounced back at the base. GR yelled “Hold on!” as the
energy attacks struck and dissolved upon the base’s energy shields. Knickerian yelled for
the cloaking unit to be turned on, and the base vanished, away from targeting by the
king’s attacks.

GR: “Seren, Knick, and Kneed. We need to teleport into the tanks control rooms and take
them out, one by one. Now they have nowhere to retreat to, since the king destroyed the
storage docks. In each tank are four armed dwarf soldiers. Do not underestimate them.”

GR:” There are two supertanks. Kneed and I will finish them off by going into one of the
super tanks, Seren you and Knickerian go into the other. Go tit?”

Seren: “Yep. Got it. Let’s do this.”

The three destroyed the smaller unit tanks while GR oversaw from within the base.
Finally, all four of them beamed down to take out the soldiers in the supertanks. Each
supertank held eight men and a commanding officer. With the men slain, Seren and GR
set the super tanks to auto-destruct and everyone beamed back to the base.

GR: “We have to move this island base back to overtop the burning village. The kickback
from those exploding tanks is going to be enormous.”

Knickerian: “Got it covered GR.”

The tanks exploded, annihilating vitually everything east of the magma river in the
underworld. All that remained of the Dwarf King’s base, and of pretty much everything




                                           143
1
4
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

to the east was a wasteland and single, solid dome. The dome that had been part of the
Dwarf King’s base lay by itself amongst the smoldering dirt, untouched.

GR: “What in the world could have survived that blast???”

Seren: “This isn’t good.”

Knickerian: “I have a feeling you are right..”

A panel in the top of the dome structure slid open….then another…then a few
more…then all of them began to cascade downwards. Revealed, in the open dome, was
an energy portal. The portal engaged and opened to another dimension. The dimension
that Magnos was in.

Seren: “Dammit! Is that Magnos again?”

Knickerian: “Yes. And it seems that the portal has amplified its power. We couldn’t take
him before we aren’t going to be able take him now. Let’s try using the base weapons on
him.”

Magnos hovered overtop the triangular portral to the energy dimension. After a few shots
by the base it retreated back into its own dimension.

“Seren, we have to chase it and destroy it once and for all. We can’t keep having it come
back.” GR said.

“Knickerian, get on nav. Send us into the Magnos dimension.”

“Right on Seren!”

The four used Sky Island Base’s beam weapons against Magnos….shot after shot….fire
after fire…finally sending a bea, of nuclear energy into its core to overload and destroy it.
Magnos explodes, tearing the Sky Island base, along with itself, into a trillion pieces.

You awake on an tiny little floating piece of rock, and soon realize you know where you
are, you had been there once so long ago. You sink your hand into the mass of gelatin and
mathematics you call the GRid, and then follow with the rest of your body. You are
rocketed through the strange dimension that has as its gateway Bimia Triangle. You soon
arrive at the central crystal, that controls the triangle’s travelers.

The crystal has been heavily damaged…most of it orbits the core of the crystal, floating
about in pieces.

You move forward and the crystal speaks…


                                            144
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    4
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


“I am too weak…I have tried to repair our existence young Seren, the rips in the fabric of
our spacetime, but I have failed. I am almost completely out of power. All I am able to do
to help is open a small rift for you to travel through so you may be free, This will be your
last trip through my portals Seren, goodbye and good luck.”




                                            145
1
4
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]



3500 Anno Dominae

A triangular gateway appeared high in the sky over the southern key islands, underneath
Sky Island and the Kingdom of Serenity. Seren as a boy, along with his brother Alan and
his father Sonon, plummeted downwards and toward Bimia Triangle. Sonon and little
Seren slipped into the gaterway, and out of the bottom face of the triangular gateway, in
perfect simultaneity, slipped older, GRown Seren. The gateway closed and as he fell,
Seren could see his brother tumbling too, miles away. Then water, cold cold water. Then
darkness.

Seren awoke upon one of the islands in the Southern Keys. He had returned to the time
when he first experienced time travel, when he had fullen from the island that day upon
the mountain with his father, and was thrown back into the past. Bimia crystal had sent
him to that exact moment in time. Seren awoke upon a dusty shore.

“All of the friends I have met upon the way…This is the time I remember from my
childhood, when Sandre sucked the life from the planet and used its imprisoned souls as
fuel Here you all have been imprisoned, all of the life that is and ever was. I must free
you. I must!”

“It seems I’ve landed somewhere in the South Keys. My brother must have landed
closeby. The tower is to the far, far north, on the mainland. I must get there.”

Nearby was an old ghost town, filled with tumbleweed and run down buildings, covered
in dust. As Seren entered the town from the east, the skeleton of a horse animated and
galloped off to the west. A rickety old “Jail” sign hung by one nail on the face of a nearby
building. The outpost was constructed old, poorly by the prospectors who had once lived
there. Most of the buildings had been boarded up and abandoned long ago. Nearby, a
candle light lit in a building marked “Shirley’s Saloon.” Seren, more curious than afraid,
entered the Saloon.

Inside, the Saloon was polish, in perfect shape. Tables fit with chairs and place settings
were in the dining room portion of the bar, and to the back and to the right were bars fully
stocked with spirits.

Seren was examining the bar to the right when he heard a yell, “Don’t touch what you
didn’t pay for cowboy.”

Seren turned to see the shade of a woman bar tender behind the north bar.

“Sorry ma’am,” Seren said. “What exactly are you doing here? And why do you keep the
bar in perfect order when nobody will ever arrive?”



                                            146
                                                                                       1
                                                                                       4
                                                                      [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

“Let me tell you of a story of a world of ruin….” Shirly began.

“In the north an immense tower stands. Born like a phoenix out of the ashes of Sore, it is
a living machine that drains energy from heaven and earth.”

“Born out of the ashes of Sore….” Seren muttered.

“The tower is surrounded by a field of deko energy, energy drained from the souls of
living beings. It does this by connecting to them through the region that exists outside of
time. So that within that field of energy there all sorts of living beings, it is teeming with
life. But everywhere outside that tower, upon this planet, is nothing but a wasteland,”
Shirley explained.

“How did my planet get to be this way?”

“It all began when the Emperor unsealed the tower Sore and raised the city of Mrobid.
Soon, the dark ancestors of the comet had lured away the ancients from their cause. The
once proud rebellion was actually tricked into releasing the comets remains. The corrupt
ancients stole its powers and sent the heroes deep into the dangerous, unstable core land
to die. So it is said…” Shirley continued.

“All that is known to us about these heroes is that they disturbed the ancient Deko
Reactors and caused an acidic tidal wave that destroyed what was left of the coreland
ruins.”

“An explosion released, the Deko energy fused with Sore, causing a catastrophic domino
effect of deadly explosions. The unstable life force started draining life out of the planet
and back into Sore.”

“Those who survived did what they could. Some of us marched through this desert and
founded this outpost. Others went about it other ways…”

“What do you mean by other ways?”

“Some traveled to the living tower, Sandre. They made a deal with the devil. Eventually
the people of this outpost gave up and went to. It was either make the deal or die of
starvation. I chose the latter.”

“So what was the deal?”

“I followed my people to the tower like I am now, as a shade, but was unable to enter the
Deko field…if I did I would never be able to escape.”

“The deal…?”


                                             147
1
4
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“Those who entered the tower are given eternal life, in exchange for the use of their soul
as a weapon for whoever is in control of the tower.”

“The tower’s last Deko generator is lost somewhere in these wastes. The Emperor does
not have all the generators activated yet. The generators are like Sandre’s legs if it were
human. Without them it cannot stand. If this last generator is activated, even the wastes
will no longer be tolerable”

“Tell me more…” Seren said.

“With enough life force feeding into Sandre, Blade will have the power to break the seals
on Sandre’s keys and use them to unlock the ‘lost generator’.”

“It is the ancient weapon of Sore. It is fueled by the energy of our planets core, channeled
from the core into the crust through the volcano. It channels geo-thermal energy into a
deadly weapon that can be targeted anywhere he pleases.”

“Blade has what he wants. He has the whole world in his hands. Now he is trying to use
Sandre to complete his ultimate plan, what he wanted from the very beginning. He wants
the power to summon another comet, consume it, and be like a god.”

“If you can take out Sandre’s legs, it will be vulnerable and unable to defend itself.
Destroy the generators, don’t like Blade find you, and do it quickly!”

“Ruin the generators and bring life back to this land. Only then will you be able to move
on closer to restoring the world. Revive the mechs that are still sealed away. They will be
able to help you in your battle. You have to go it alone for a while. This is a solo mission
until you get inside Sandre!”

“Go now! Make your way to the tower. Use the power you find to heal the land! Seal the
Core Land from the tower. The underworld is free, seal them away!”

A passageway opened behind the bar to the right.

“Head through that passageway and towards the foothills. You will find the desert reactor
nestled in those hills. Go now, Seren of Serenity!”

Iron Hills Reactor

Massive mounds rose towards the heavens in the distance. They are the hills known as
“The Iron Hills”, because they were not formed naturally. In fact, they are silos and
domes that were once used for the military, but have been out of use so long they are
covered in sand and earth. Seren hopped a gated fence and headed into the complex.


                                            148
                                                                                      1
                                                                                      4
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 9


Seren reached one particularly large hill with piles of mechanical refuse strewn about
outside. After shoving the metal salvage away like an explorer cutting away with a
machete in a jungle, Seren reached a hill that had part of its earthy covering blown away.
There was a large metal door, with a wheel in the center meant for securing it. Seren
unlocked the door and headed inside.

Inside the hill was cavernous. One, wide, long elevated walkway stretched out into the
darkness. Seren kept walking until something else came into view. It appeared he was on
the top part of a cross-shaped walkway. The left walkway moving away from the
intersection had suffered a cave in. The right walkway had suffered complete collapse.
Leaving only two choices. One, the large, elliptical shaft that lay in the center of crux, or
the single walkway continuing on from where he was, into a shadowy doorway in the
distance.

Seren took the doorway in the distance. It opened up to another massive room. This one
with a tall, wide, elliptical platform covered in electronics, gadgets, etc… that rose up,
with bubbling beaker tubes that rose into the ceiling on either side. In their center a
staircase rose up to the elliptical platform. Six sealed passages left the platform and in the
center was a shaft, presumably linked to the one encountered earlier. A small plaque at
the bottom of the elliptical platform read “DEKO Research Lab.”

As for the sealed passages, in labs 2, 3, 4, and 5 Seren found imprisoned magical beasts
which GRanted him their power upon release. Lab 3 held the mythical beast “Shen” who
taught Seren a spell called “Rebuke.” Lab 4 had a beast without a name that appeared like
a snake. It taught Seren the spell called “Venomous.” Lab 2 held a series of beakers
labeled “Slion Remains.” Seren gathered them and upon touching them became stronger
with his magical power. Finally, lab 5 was the most peculiar. Floating in an imprisoning
stasis field, a glowing ball of energy spikes floated up and down.

“Seren….Seren….” the energy ball whispered into Seren’s mind.

“Please free me....I have been created of pure Deko. They imprison me here but all I want
is peace.”

Seren relased the being and as reward was taught the mysterious spell “Deis.”

In lab 6 a Slion had gone berserk to destroy its prison and escape. Unfortunately, it
almost took half of reality with it. Finally, Seren decided to head to the first room. Inside,
he found controls for the elevator. He activated the elevator, and then went back to the
elliptical platform and took it down to the bottommost floor. There, the Deko Reactor
awaits.




                                             149
1
5
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Deko Reactor stood in the center of a circular platform, settled into a structure
allowing its odd infinity symbol shape to nestle in and be sturdy. However, this reactor,
unlike the one’s Seren had seen before, did not seem to have a mind of its own. As Seren
approached, an alarm went off.

In front of the reactor a holoGRam of a horned robot appeared.

“I am Zenith. I am the central reactor core’s computer monitoring system. What is your
authorization?”

“I don’t have an authorization. I’m here to shut you down.”

“Well then, we will see about that,” Zenith replied.

Seren made quick work of Zenith and approached the reactor controls. The reactor
prompted him and gave him the choice of sending the energy into Sandre, or back into
the source.

“Output to the source, it will cause the plant to undo its life sucking actions and then self
destruct.”

“Who was that?” Seren said.

“It’s me, Shirley,” the ghost said and then chuckled.

“Why are you following me?” Seren asked.

“You are going to need some help and I don’t have anything better to do. It’s not like I
have customers,” she said.

Seren laughed and waved her to come over next to him. He turned on reflux mode on the
reactor, and it started to pump energy back into the source. The planet echoed its self
destruct sequence, and Seren and the Shade fled to the outside. They took cover behind
another dome in the iron hills and watched the explosion light up the sky.

Shirley motioned to Seren to look over to his left. An old rusty suspension bridge
connected the island wastes where they were and the wastes on the south shore of the
main continent.

Southern Wastes

Seren trudged onward. He had just left the Iron Hills and the Deko Reactor that lie there.
Stretching from the edge of the Iron Hills, over the ocean to the Southern Wastes was an
old tethered bridge that had fallen into disrepair. Seren followed the road onto the bridge


                                             150
                                                                                        1
                                                                                        5
                                                                       [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

and walked onwards until he heard the sound of engines in the distance. Peering forward
and squinting his eyes, he saw three vehicles, hoverbikes, approaching. The three bikes
were ridden by outlaws armed with shotguns and broad sword machetes. The leader of
the hikers power slid in front of Seren and pointed the machete at Seren’s throat.

“Your weapons and supplies, kindly,” the biker said.

The two other bikers pulled up aside of him.

“This is hiker territory,” said the hoverbiker to the left of the leader.

“We suggest you turn over your supplies…” said the hoverbiker to the right.

Seren took his backpack and tossed it to the biker to the left. He then tossed Vyral to the
right. Vyral slowly fell towards the GRound near the biker on the right.

“Now Seren,” the voice of Shirley echoed in Seren’s mind.

Seren winked, raised his left arm, and as he did so his hand began to glow in sync with
Vyral. Vyral leapt up on its own and skewered the biker to the right of the leader,
following through and returning to Seren’s hand.

“You little bitch,” said the biker to the left. Seren lead with his left and followed through
with his right, shattering the jaw of the lackee. The gang leader turned tail and drove back
towards the wasteland.

“Wait….don’t leave me!” the hiker leader pleaded to the head hiker as he rode away.

“GReat, now what?” the man turned and spit on the GRound. “There isn’t another god
damn living soul in these wastes.”

“I need to know the location of the Deko reactors,” Seren said a matter-of-factly.

“And what will you do for me” the punk asked.

Seren drew his sword. “You show me to them, I let you live.”

“I don’t know if I like those terms,” the punk squealed.

“It’s the only terms you get,” Seren said and began to walk towards the end of the bridge.

“Ok. Ok. I’m coming along. My name is-,” the hoverbiker continued.

“I don’t care what your name is.” Seren interrupted.


                                              151
1
5
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“Zeel…my name is Zeel. The closest reactor is due northwest, in the desert ruins.”




Desert Hills Reactor

“The ruins should be around here. My readings show we are getting close,” Zeel said.

Up ahead, through the dust in the wind and twisters of sand were clusters of sandstone
buildings. They stood half buried in the middle of the lonely wastes. Zeel and Seren made
their way through the ruins buried beneath the dune.

“Here ya go mister,” Zeel said.

They had arrived at a cubic shaped sandstone building. In the front facing them was an
opening into the building, sealed by two heavy sandstone panels, marked with obscure
runes and lunar designs. On either side of the panels were torches, lit in a strange neon
blue light. Zeel reached forward and pressed against on of the lunar panels and a small
tremor began. The sandstone panel slid to the side revealing an opening into chamber
within.

The entrance to the chamber opened into a GReat chamber. A narrow stone catwalk
stretched through the chamber, with various catwalks arcing to the left and right into the
darkness. A GRouip of bats fled from the ceiling as Zeel guided Seren directly ahead in a
straight line.

The main catwalk led into another boundless chamber, this one in stark contrast to the
one before. Seren and Zeel climbed a metal staircase to arrive at a platform made of some
alien alloy. To their left and right were massive cylinders filled with a GReen substance
of some sort. Spotlights lit up the ceiling and lights upon the metal girders in the ceiling
shown down upon a massive Deko Reactor, situated in the center of platform.

The GReat hourglass shaped reactor was made of a brushed metallic maroon, situated on
the front of each “chamber” of the hourglass was an organic eye, that looked about, to the
left and right. The upper chamber’s eye situated vertically and the lower chamber’s


                                            152
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     5
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

horizontally with a series of controls in panels along the base of the reactor. The eyes
darted back and forth and then fixed their gaze upon Seren and Zeel.

In front of the Deko Reactor was a platform lift that would take them to the computer that
was in charge of monitoring and controlling the Deko Reactor. Ignoring the reactor itself,
Zeel recommended disabling the reactor through the computer system. The two of them
took the lift downwards.

Seren and Zeel made their way through the coolant room, below the main reactor room.
Apparently, Zeel explained, the fluid Seren had seen in the reactor room above and now
in hundreds of tubes down here in the base level was a special coolant that prevented the
reactor from overheating and incinerating everything in the nearby vicinity. Beyond the
coolant room was the main computer for the Desert Hills reactor.

Zeel and Seren arrived in the main computer room. They walked along a catwalk made of
glowing energy, looming over an abyss, to arrive at a platform in front of a massive
terminal monitor that took up the entire wall in front of them and was easily the height of
two men.

Zeel began playing around with the controls on the terminal…

“Shouldn’t you be careful with that? Do you know what you are doing?” Seren asked.

“Look at this! This computer’s hard memory has a complete historical logs of Deko
production,” Zeel said.

“How is that surprising?” Seren asked.

“Well by itself it isn’t that impressive…but…the production information goes back really
far! Back to the days of the 1,000 year war! That’s like….”

“Yeah. Around the year 2100.”

“Let’s pull up some of the historical data. It may prove useful,” said Seren.

“It tells of how after magic was discovered through the comet that landed on the planet,
we actually tried to create new forms of magic on our own. Seems we discovered one of
the ancients reactors…a Magmus Reactor?”

“Yeah….I know that one too well…” Seren remarked.

“It seems these reactors were originally created to try and harness the natural energy of
Terra for our own magicians. Instead of relying on the energy left over from the comet
that collided.”


                                            153
1
5
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“Interesting…but how did they get tied into Sandre?”

“Hold on a second. Let me finish what I’ve got here. Seems it was the ancients who first
figured it out. After they figured out how it worked, the people started looking for more
of these “Deko” Reactors. They eventually dug up this one and put it to work.”


“Well everyone is gone.why is it still running? I was told it is fueling Sandre.”

“It was slated for destruction. Seems someone pulled some strings to have it kept for
‘research purposes’.”

“ Is it possible to reverse the energy flow and short it out like I did with the other reactors
I found?”
“Seems like that would also send the life energy stolen by Sandre using the reactor would
flow back into the planet,” Zeel said.

“Good. Let’s do it,” Seren said.

“Ok. I’ll try it. Let me proGRam the algorithm into it.”

The massive computer monitor lit up and began to flash red.

“Let’s get out of here!” Zeel yelled.

“SELF DESTRUCT SEQUNCE FOR MORIA SAND DUNES REACTOR
ACTIVATED…BEGIN COUNTING AT T-240 SECONDS…”

Zeel and Seren fled, through the coolant room, and up the lift shaft. Suddenly, halfway ip
the shaft, the lift stopped.

“Dammit! What happened?” Seren asked.

“Seems like we are stuck. This facility isn’t exactly brand new.”

The shaft began to shake and the rock walls of the shaft started to crumble. Then…

“Uh oh….Seren GRab onto me and hold on tight, we are about ready to go on the ride of
your life” Zeel said.

Pressure built up in the shaft below where the lift was situated and then released,
exploding, thrusting them upwards and then through another passage in the ceiling above




                                             154
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    5
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

the boiling reactor, and then finally careening out of the sand dune ruins and across the
desert.




                                            155
1
5
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Steel Mountains and Carnival Caverns

Seren and Zeel finally landed at the base of the Steel Mountains, at the end of the
wasteland territory.

“Well I guess this is where I say goodbye,” said Zeel.

“And do what exactly? Plus I haven’t shut down all of the reactors yet, have I?” Seren
said.

“No I guess not…and you are right, I have nowhere to go. Here is no worse than any
other place,” Zeel said. “There is another reactor in these mountains. We need to find the
entrance to Carnival Caverns. In these mountains there used to be an amusement park
called Carnival Caverns. Later on, they tore everything down and used it as a research
facility. And guess what they were researching…”

“Deko Reactors I am assuming..”

“Right.”

Zeel and Seren made their way through the mountains. Occasionally they would come
across or be attacked by a stray mulcopod. Mulcopods are what Zeel named the large,
mutated, insect like creatures that roamed all around Terra now. Other than a few outlaws
and ghosts, that was really all the life that existed anymore.

Seren and Zeel found the entrance to Carnival Caverns. However, it was filled with
boulders from a landslide that must have taken place at one point in the past. The two of
them set work to clearing awayt he rubble.

Some Carnival Caverns attractions were still in the mountain, an eerie reminder of what
had happened here in the past. Some of the attractions include a fake lava pit, a
rollercoaster, bumper cars, and an old, dried up, water boat ride. After punching away at
the control panel/map of Carnival Caverns and pulling a few swtiches, a panel opened in
the cavern floor near the cobblestone crossroads in the center of the cavern, revealing a
service ladder that stretched downwards into the darkness.

“After you,” Seren said.

Seren and Zeel descended down the ladder. It lead to other ladders, catwalks, and pipes
that were wide enough to be treaded upon. They traveled further and further down. Now
they had moved much further and were moving downwards past skyscrapers all around,
aflame, lit in a neverending fire. They continued downwards and finally found
themselves on the roof of a cathedral.



                                            156
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     5
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

“There once were people who lived below, in these caverns. Those skyscrapers you saw
inside the cavern set on fire, were there homes,” Zeel said.

“What caused the fire?” Seren asked.

“I’m not sure but I’m sure it was related to the magic experiments being conducted down
here.”

Inside the cathedral they found themselves at a dead end. At least it seemed so. Seren was
about to ask “what next” when Zeel leapt onto the massive pendulum swinging back and
forth. Seren followed and they found themselves at the top of a staircase, a fire escape,
that lead down to the main street.

They walked between the rows upon rows of burning houses, the fire never ending and
smokeless like the flames of hell. At the end of the street they arrived at an old salvage
yard. Zeel opened the gate and waved Seren to follow him. Once inside,

“Wait here a minute,” Zeel said and he quickly darted into a shack in the yard. A massive
hook, attached to a girder on the ceiling of the underworld city, lowered itself. Zeel
hopped on to it and told Seren,

“Come on. It’s the only way we can past the security around the Deko reactor. This one is
a biggy,” Zeel said.

“Now you are talking my language! Let’s go!” Seren said and jumped aboard.

Zeel controlled the hook via remote, and started moving it forward and upwards. On a
shelf, overlooking the rest of the cavern, was a massive cylinder surrounded by multiple
layers of fencing, auto fire laser turrets, and may more deadly things. Spanning both the
left and right sides, rising vertically into the dark oblivion above, were massive cooling
cyclinders filled with bubles and GReen sludge. Heavy duty industrial fans the size of a
small SUV were mounted all around the walls of the building.

Zeel navigated the hook beyond the buildings defenses and took the two off them right to
what was essentially, the front door. Inside the building there was nothing visible but
hollowness, blackness, and a single lift in the middle of the shadows, connected to via
four perpendicular metal catwalks. Through the heavy black mist, if one squinted hard
enough, one could see the shapes of the SBCUs, special fluid control boxes that regulate
the Deko Reactors energy extraction process.

Seren and Zeel took the elevator down to the bottommost accessible level. As they did so,
they passed a massive tank filled with coolant, bigger than anything they had ever seen
built by man. Once on the bottom floor, they had to go by foot to reach the inner core




                                            157
1
5
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

chambers. Two security doors led to rooms within the coolant tank. Seren and Zeel first
chose to upon the door on the right. As they did…

“Zeel…I don’t like the feeling of this. Maybe we should shut the door and not go in,”
Seren said.

They then heard howling from within the chamber.

“Quick! Shut the door!” Seren yelled.

A massive, lion like beast, without skin and with bones protruding from its bare, red,
muscles trudged forward. Seren and Zeel froze in their tracks. The beast stalked forward.

“Seren, I don’t think you should fight this one. Let’s go into the other door. It should lead
to the reactor. Come on.”

The two of them left the GRowling monster and sealed the door behind them. Everything
was completely black for a minute, then the room lit up, illuminated by the Steel
Mountain reactor.

The reactor began to shimmer in a strange blue light. Then a voice echoed in darkness,

“Hm..haha. I know what you are thinking. What you are trying son, but it won’t work.
Don’t worry, I haven’t forgotten about you, my time traveling friend. And, speaking of
time travelling friends, I have all of yours. There souls that is..hahaaha,” it was the voice
of Emperor Blade.

“He sounds worse than before.”

“Yes. I believe he has just about completely gone mad with power,” Zeel said.

As the reactor shimmered before them…

“All my life the shadows called for me. On that one fateful day, I Sonon Kleft, was thrust
into darkness without any control. I was standing upon Sky Island, raising my son. A bit
of chance caused my sons to plummet downwards towards the ocean, from miles in the
air. Not even my magic could have saved them from that fate. Luckily, something else
intervened. Seren was thrusted back in time. I leapt after him and found myself thrown
back in time too. But the fates sent me much farther back.

The Master, the Lord of all that is Good on Terra had sent Seren back in time. The Dark
Gods, the Sovereigns of Dark Life Force, Dark Deko, had meddled, and sent me back
further, hoping to eternally divorce us from each other.”




                                             158
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    5
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

Seren heard the voice of his father speaking into his mind, as he stared at the shimmering
blue reactor. Before him now, he saw the face of the one altered the time jump and
muddled things. It was a Dark God named Nebachudnezar.

“Did you tell him who you were?” a young Ome Sumac said.

“No, I killed him and ate his remains.,” a young Blade said.
“You are a disgusting creature! How could you?” Ome Sumac said. “You will pay! You
stole my soul and drained me using those damn machines! I have…nothing…left.”

That is how I was separated from my companion, Ome Sumac. As he said his last word,
he pulled a bundle of rope from a nearby chest and disappeared.

Seren, listen. My best friend when I was a child was named Sean. One day a storm hit
and his entire home was teleported to Bimia Triangle. Later on I found him again, he had
changed his name to Ome Sumac but little else had changed about him. I couldn’t say the
same about myself.

Listen Seren. You are my son and I love you. Magic, Tek, Techno, Deko, are really all
the same. They are manifestations of life force. Listen Seren, I will not let you die in
ignorance.

It was Ome Sumac who was by my side when I built the Kingdom of Domon during the
thousand years war. He showed me the secret to eternal life, to immortality. I’m sorry
that you will never know it…

Emperor Blade then appeared in front of Seren and Zeel. The reactor ceased shimmering.

“Now the time has come! I have no more need for this reactor, nor its pathetically weak
‘Deko’ life force. I have finally, the power of Eiedos. You, my son. Seren. You cannot
even fathom the power I have at hand. Goodbye my son. This is the way it had to be.”

In the halls a computer echoed, counting down one last destruction sequence.

Seren: “Father. What is? How is it more powerful than Deko?”

“Eiedos is the guardian being. He supposedly created Deko energy for this planet from
nothing and raised the first life here. He disappeared millions of years ago through the
Temporal Triangle to work on a more perfect race of beings,” the reactor core replied.

“Hmmm. That was odd. Well while I am trapped here I may as well talk. Reactor, how
can the Emperor ‘have’ Eiedos?” Seren asked.




                                           159
1
6
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Eiedos also refers to the control core where he lives. This place naturally generates
Deko and is a breeding spot for life.”

“If your Father has control of Eiedos, it really is the end. Eiedos, is the son of the prime
mover, the first being to exist. He is the creator.”

“Your Father is no longer a man. He has become like the gods…”

“Do you know of the ‘Master’?” Seren asked the ore.

“Yes. He is the god being that is in charge of regulating and managing Deko energy on
Reactor this planet”

“Magik, Tekk, Techno, Deko, etc…. are all different names for foreign energy. They all
come from the mysterious aura energy that exists on the plane of Bimia. The realm
outside time where fate’s crystal lies. That is the plane our souls exist on. The physical is
transient and meaningless,” the reactor shimmered.

“What kind of power are we talking about Blade having?” Zeel asked.

“Enough to challenge the Master,” the reactor shimmered as if it was shivering, in its
own alien, metallic way.

“God-like powers…” Seren fretted.

“I’m sorry to inform you sir Seren and sir Zeel, but I am at full capacity and about to
meltdown.”

“Hey reactor, you seem pretty smart. Is there any way to survive this explosion?”

“Searching…”

“Seren, I suggest you perform your Rite of Sealing immediately,” the reactor said in
mono tone.

“Hmmm….ok!”

“Rite of Sealing!”

Seren waved his hands about the reactor. A majestic blue field of energy engulfed the
reactor in the shape of an egg. As the reactor began to detonate, the field buldged and
then condensed backwards, shrinking. Buldge, shrink. Explode, implode. Finally the last
explosion was released. The field imploded, and imploded, and imploded, condensing
beyond belief, like a super nova reversing under its GRavitational pull and becoming a


                                             160
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     6
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

black hole. Lastly, it rocketed towards it insides, for one last implosion. Condensing into
a single glowing orb the size of a marble. Seren walked forward and picked it up. A voice
echoed in his mind,

“This orb has fused with your mind, body, and soul and I give you a very powerful
weapon. This spell, ‘Deko Flare’, has the potential to annihilate anything left in its wake,
no matter what its nature is, human, reactor, tower, planet, god. Be wise with its use,” the
monotone voice of the reactor finished.

As the voice finished, waves of energy began to pulse through the rooms where the
reactor once was. Suddenly, an endless “tube” of energy that opened out into where the
reactor once was “sucked up” Seren. To Zeel it seemed as though Seren had simply
vanished in thin air.

The Deko Tubes

As Seren rocketed forward at inconceivable speeds through the Deko Tubes, a symphony
of robotic like voice echoed through the tunnels.

“No has ever taken on the Techno Knights, not even immortals have one their challenges
against them…what could he be?” whispers through the tubes. Seren heard the voices of
the people of his home planet, speaking about him and his future.

“Surely the power sleeps within him…” whispered another voice. Seren rapidly turned
his head to the side to look, but, again, nobody was there, just the bizarre, alien walls of
the Deko Tubes. Another voice, louder than others but then faded again into nothingness,
“Master of the Power of Palastine,” it hissed, “Soul Devourer! Lord of antiquity…” it
hissed again then GRew silent.

“Welcome back to the place of your birth Seren, welcome back to the Deko Tubes,” said
one louder than the others in an almost robotic tone.

 and then crash, stopped on a dime. After his head stopped swimming and vision returned
to normal, he looked at his surroundings. In front of him was a stone wall, overGRown
with vines, with a glowing red passageway. The passageway pulsed like the beating of a
heart. The GRound below him was made of a polished black stone, and little blue bolts of
electricity arced here and there. With no where else to go but forward, Seren entered the
passageway.

Inside, he found himself presented with a massive circular disc. One each disc was an arc
that corresponded to a portal just like the one he had entered from. In the center of the
disc was a cold, black stone obelisk. Energy arced all around obelisk.




                                            161
1
6
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“This is amazing,” said Seren. He approached the obelisk and touched it with his hand.
When he did, a holoGRam appeared above the obelisk and a flickering picture of Sandre
where the obelisk sat, and the computer began to speak.

“Welcome custodial staff to the main junction point of the Deko tubes. As you can see,
all of the main reactors we have set up meet here and the energy is transferred directly to
Sandre. Please enjoy your stay and if you have any questions feel free to page me.”

Seren read the markings near all of the doorways. “Iron Hills, Sandstone Hills, Steel
Mountains. Hmm I’ve already been to those. What’s this? Volcano reactor?”

The holoGRam screen changed to display a bizarre island.

“The Elemental Island,” the computer stated a-matter-of-factly.

In front of two serpent covered pillars that guard the entrance to the island, the screen
continued to pan downwards, and then deep below the water to show a weird, octopus
shaped Deko Reactor, embedded in the ocean’s floor. Energy was arcing all around the
reactor. The view on the holoGRam then changed to show a massive beam of light
blasting out of the ocean, parting the water around it, stronger than tsunami.

“The four elemental islands of the past were joined by a GReat priest during the times of
Armageddon after you left Seren. He had found a tree of life that was barely surviving,
and took its seed, and planted it in a GReat forest. Here it could prosper and GRow
strong! When the Emperor began reviving the Deko reactors, the tree of life, called the
One Tree by us, pulled the life force of the islands together and shielded it. But now it is
being drained by that reactor, and soon all hope will be lost of saving the lives of the
people.”

“I recognize that voice. Are you the Keeper of Courage?”

“That I am Seren. Like you already know, there is nobody here in this world but ghosts
now…including the order of keepers.”
Seren: “The one core. It rests within this reactor. This seed once balanced the world, kept
all that is eternal protected. The one who communes with the one core is said to gain
wonderous power.

Keeper: “The reactor is using it to channel energy from the Elemental Island. You must
destroy the reactor.

Seren: “No! We cannot. If the seed is killed, the last of the trees of life, the one tree, will
die. If the one tree dies, the island will sink beneath the waves…”

A picture of the reactor core GRadually rotated in the holoGRam above.


                                              162
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     6
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3


Keeper: “Speak with the tree…”

“One tree, oh guardian of life? Can you hear me?” Seren prayed.

“I hear you Seren. I am the One Tree. I am speaking to you through my clipped daughter
seed that was stolen.”

“I want to help you but I don’t know how!” Seren said.

“There is nothing you can do…” the one tree replied.

“What if I….” Seren touched the tiny Deko orb he had been given and used his mind to
release the tiniest bit of energy.

“Last time letting out energy from this thing sent me through the Deko Tubes…maybe it
will do it again…”

The Deko Tubes opened up in front of him as he used the Deko Stream Technique,
however this time Seren wasn’t rocketed through but allowed to travel at a leisurely pace,
through them, to the underwater reactor.

Seren arrived underwater, jetted out of the Deko Tubes. As he did so, he took advantage
of the momentum, drew his sword, and channeled his energy to drive his sword into the
Underwater Deko Reactor, cleaving it in two. Seren reached for the One Tree Seed,
tucked it under his arm and rolled up into a ball, thrown out of the water and into the sky
by the blast from the Deko Reactor. The sphere of blue light that was Seren and the Seed
projected into the clouds. Seren lost consciousness and when he awoke, he was lieing on
the shores of the Elemental Island.




Elemental Island

Raising high into the sky, the ornate GRay stone pillars amazed all of them. They were
ornate, covered in patterns of hieroglyphics and serpents. One pillar stood to the west of
Seren, another to the East. He had landed directly in the middle of the two, upon the only
beach on Elemental Isle.

“The seed, the seed, where is it? Oh no!” Seren looked all around but saw nothing. He
stood up tand turned, still looking for the seed, but to find Ether, his lightning dragon


                                            163
1
6
4    [FANTASY SAGA M]

companion, instead. The dragon roared and Seren promised they would catch up once ina
safer place. Ether uncurcled his tail to reveal the seed. Seren picked it up and slipped it
into his bag.

In front of Seren and Ether was a massive castle, a throwback to the medieval times of
Terra. The drawbridge lowered and portcullis began to rise, revealing a shadowy corridor
into the depths of the building.

A voice echoed from the castle onto the rest of the island.

“Welcome to my Island Seeker. Step through the porthole enter if thou wishest to speak
with me,” the voice said.

“Why are we here Seren? We should find some other way this or get outta here,” Ether
said.

“The One Tree should be able to return us to the crossroads. We should go inside and ask
for its assistance. Plus, we have to return its seed.”

“About that Seed…what is it?” Ether said.

“I’ll explain in a bit.”


Seren and Ether entered the doorway. They found themselves in a pitch black chamber.
As they walked forward, torches lit of their own accord next to them. Although they
could not be seen, Seren and Ether felt the presence of both Demons and Angels moving
about the darkness around them. Finally, they arrived at a small elliptical blue portal. The
two slipped into the porta to find themselves in a labyrinth.

“I can help with this labyrinth by flying above and guiding you Seren. Follow my lead.”
Ether said.

The two made quick work of the maze and found themselves teleported at the exit, once
again, but this time to the interior of a volcanic fortress. Pillars stood tall, with flames
leaping from one to the other like they had a life of their own, and pools of lava spilled
this way and that. The only path lead them further downwards, deeper into the fortress.
They then reached a room with two tall pillars. In the center of the two tall pillars were
four short pillars. Four spirits moved over the pillars. Seren approached the spirits,
causing the gate at the other end of the room to open, causing lava to begin to pour into
the room. The spirits vanished. Seren and Ether continued downwards until they found a
man dressed in black plate armor battling the Spirits that Seren had just released.

“Hail!” Seren attempted a GReeting.


                                            164
                                                                                   1
                                                                                   6
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


“Leave unless you are here to help. GRrgn…” the man said.

“Who are you?” Seren asked as he struck a blow to one of the fire spirits.

“Albert,” he said. Seren wondered…could this be his brother? It was so long ago the
image of him in his mind had faded.

“Why are you here Albert?” Seren asked.

“I should say the same to you,” Albert replied.

The two, with their forces combined, made short work of the four fire spirits. With the
fire spirits dead, a teleporter appeared in the room. Seren and Albert took it, finding
themselves in a GRove of trees. Surrounding the GRove of trees the elements – fire,
wind, water, and earth – raged. A stone walkway lead to a stone structure with a golden
root embedded in it. A voice echoed…

“Welcome seekers. Two thousand years ago a GReat blacksmith forged a sword from the
core of the comet. He made its hilt from my roots and wrapped it in a sheath made of my
leaves. As the magic in the land died, the force of the comet contained in the sword
overwhelmed the blade of the sword. The warrior who wielded the weapon returned it
here for me to guard. The weapon’s name is Rotbane, if you can complete my trials you
may have it. My guardian’s of earth, fire, wind, and water will test you. Only if you
defeat all four guardians and their trials may you wield the sword and speak with me,”
the one tree spoke.

“Urgh….who goes there?” a booming, deep voice echoed. A swirling purple plasma
portal appeared before Al and Seren.

“What is that Al?”

“Elemental gateway. Get ready, something is coming into our world from another plane.”

Out of the portal emerged a gargantuan stone golem, eyes ablaze in a red aura wielding a
rock hammer.

Seren drew his sword and Al pulled a Panzer 322 heavy duty automatic rifle with, of
course, incidiary hollow point rounds.
The golem swung around its stone hammer, leaving shattered tree trunks and broken
masonry in its wake. Both Seren’s sword and Al’s rifle seemed to have little to no
damage on the creature. Realizing this, Seren met up with Al again in the middle of the
courtyard and said,




                                           165
1
6
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Neither of our weapons are having an effect. We need to find his weak point.”

“Watch. When he turns around, there is an exposed piece of flesh at the back of his neck.
I bet that’s it. A couple well timed bullets into there and he’s done for,” Al replied.

Seren dashed around to the front of the beast and go this attention while Al came around
its back, aimed, and set off four shots from his rifle directly in to the fleshy part of the
stone elemental. In a screech the monster fell to one knee, and then collapsed, motionless,
onto the GRound.

“One down, three to go,” Seren said.

Another portal opened instantly, this one in the shade of a deep blue. The inner blue of
the portal melted away to reveal an ocean beyond its boundaries, leaving only the original
outline of deep blue on the portal to remain. Suddenly a flood burst from within the
portal, and both Al and Seren found themselves standing in rising waters. Al and Seren
both leapt atop separate columns that in a few minutes became like little islands in the
rushing waters.

“GReat…water elemental I’m guessing,” Seren remarked.

“Indeed,” Al said.

A massive sea serpent burst from the raging waters and dove back within, penetrating the
waters closest to the column Seren stood upon.

“These columns aren’t going to hold forever, we need to make short work of this
creature,” Seren said.

“I’ve got it covered,” said Al.He reached behind him and drew out a halberd, twice his
own height in length, and swung it like it was lighter than a feather. Two round swings to
frighten the serpent and cause it to draw back, and then a third swing to lop off the sea
creatures head.

“Earth and Water…next,” said Seren.

“Wind or Fire…,” replied Al.

All of the GRove of trees was quiet. It had already GRown close to sunset, and now the
sun set fully in the distance. A light fog had rolled in and was now was sweepingly
coming in much faster. A mist of GReens and GReys filled the GRove rapidly.
“This is odd…” said Al.

“Yes, it is. What will the next creature be like?”


                                            166
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    6
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7


The fog GRew thick, like soup, and neither Seren nor Al could see the other. Then, a
light shone and refracted throughout the fog from a distance, like a light house in the
middle of a bad storm. Electricity crackled and arced through the thick air.

“Here it comes!” Seren shouted.

Half banshee, half bird, the creature screeched and howled as it flew past Seren, making
visible only wings, scales, and a single yellow claw, the claw that reached towards his
face.

“Brother, we need to clear away some of this fog. We cannot fight in it, and our enemy is
surely accustomed to it,” said Al.

“What do you suggest?” asked Seren, meanwhile dodging another sweeping blow from
the air elemental.

“Under normal circumstances I wouldn’t suggest using a wind elemental spell against a
wind elemental, but I think in this case we might be able to clear away this fog-soup.”

“Right. I’m on it. Distract the beast.”

Seren ducked behind a small stone alcove and began casting the biggest twister spell he
knew. Meanwhile Al swung around his halberd, trying to at least catch a leg or wing of
the air elemental. After a few minutes of warming up, Seren cast his spell and said,

“Al Ma’tok Torrent,” thrusting his hands forward. Pulses of pressure cut from his hands
through the fog and mixed together, swirling and twisting the fumes cast out by the air
elemental, until the spinning spell had built up enough momentum and burst from the
inside into a massive tornado. The tornado reached up into the sky and down to the
GRound and vacuumed all of the fog around into it, pulling it away and peeling the layers
of mist until there was nothing left. The air elemental stood vulnerable and confused,
with Al hidden behind him. Al raised his Panzer 322 and let out a few rounds. That was
all it took.

The wind elemental fell into vapor and became nothing. Seren and Albert did not even
have time to take a breather before the last portal opened. A fiery pentaGRam ignited and
lit up the GRove. A whirlwind of energy, flame, and almond color vapor and portal
opened through the GRound into the fire plane.

Out of it arose a horned creature, armored in red scaly skin, and yellow beady eyes like
embers. It raised its arms into the air and spoke in a deep, unpronounceable guttural
language, summoning columns of flame into the holy GRove.




                                           167
1
6
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The fiery columns swirled and leapt from spot to spot, tongues of flame jumped from tree
branch to tree branch. The fire elemental pointed its bony finger at Seren, and a funnel of
flame burst from it towards Seren’s chest. Thrown back and injured, Seren drew his
sword to block the next enchanted attack. Albert found both his halberd and bullets
useless against its enchanted skin.

“I think I’m the one to take down this beast, brother,” Seren said

Albert cast spells to heal Seren’s wounds and water elemental spells to douse the flames
the elemental spit. Seren leapt towards it with all his might, but his sword was blocked by
the GRasp of the creature’s claws. The dealt blow after blow at each other, the creature
blocking and dealing strikes with his claws, fencing with them as if they were swords.
Finally the creature swung with all his might, Seren ducked and then arose, while driving
his sword upwards, in an uppercut like fashion, into an through the creatures jaw and then
into its skull, rending its head from its body like some sort of impaler.

The fire elemental’s skull first, then body, dissolved. The flames quenched themselves
and the GRove of trees turned war-zone healed itself and erased all traces of the battles.

In front of Seren and Alert, a few feet in front of them on the path to the gates exiting the
other side of the GRove, materialized a stone covered in ancient runes. Protruding from
the stone, embedded within, was a blade with a blue ethereal root as a handle. The voice
of the one tree began to speak to them again,

“You have defeated my four elemental spirits and proven yourselves. Draw Rotbane from
its stone sheath,” the One Tree spoke.

Seren stepped forward and easily slid Rotbane out of the stone.

“One Tree, what do these markings mean?” Seren asked.

“They are of an ancient language. They ask you to plant the seed you found where
Rotbane was sheathed, so another tree like I may GRow,” the One Tree said.

Seren came forward and placed the seed in the small alcove in the stone where Rotbane
had been. The stone became soft and drew the seed into the earth.

“Please, heroes, enter the gate before you and come to me,” said the One Tree.

The three of them, Seren, Albert, and Ether, walked down a stony path, in between
mighty oak trees, into the forest. Then, standing mighty and majestic before them,
towering into the sky, was The One Tree. Too wide in diameter to measure and too tall in
height to scale. It was at the end of the stony path, and where the path ended and the tree




                                             168
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     6
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

met, was small, rectangular hole in its trunk, like a quaint little doorway. The three of
them approached it. The One Tree beckoned and called them inwards.

The three of them entered the trunk of the One Tree. Torches lit up around its perimeter
within, and before them stood a towering pillar of wood, the heart wood, the core of the
One Tree, its heart. The GRound was damp and full of puddles and vines lay writhing
across its floor. They stepped towards the heart wood, and two thick vines GRew
upwards, into the air on either side of them. On the heart wood, four rectangles of color,
each with a crystal within, began to glow, one GReen, one blue, one white, one yellow.

The One Tree spoke, “Elements return to the soul of the soil. Return to the crystals that
spawn thee.”

Four spirits appeared, one at each of the cardinal points, and flew into their own
respective crystal. Fire into yellow, Water into blue, Earth into GReen, and Wind into
white.

“I conGRatulate you. I can now, once again, summon the pure elemental spirits. Now, as
another reward, I shall give you the power to summon my soul to assist you,” the One
Tree said. A blue twinkle appeared out of the heart wood and moved over the trio,
causing them to glow.

“My powers to cure and resurrect will suit you well in the future, trust me,” the One Tree
said.

“Now, I beg thee listen. The Emperor Blade GRows close to controlling the demons
sealed away by the power of Eiedos.”

“What is Eiedos?” Seren asked.

“Thousands of years ago, when I was but a sapling, Eiedos summoned the GReat evils of
the universe and once having them gathered, sealed them away in a realm that exists
outside of time, permanently, with the hope that the universe would be a place of
tranquility forever onwards.”

“There is one Deko reactor remaining. This reactor isn’t active like the others, however it
is rooted deeply into the planet and is directly connected to Terra’s core.”

“The Emperor can reach Eiedos through that reactor. Since it is not accessible via the
Deko Tubes, you must find another means of transportation to it. I know not its exact
location nor how to reach it.”

“You must not let Blade reach Eiedos! So listen carefully. There is a desert to the north
where a pyrimad was constructed. At certain points in the time stream that location


                                            169
1
7
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

actually merges completely with the past in a sort of loop. At that loop the Lost City of
Mirage can be found. The residents of Mirage can give you the help you need. Now, you
must hurry! I will send you to the pyramid when you are ready.”




Road to Eiedon

Before the three, Seren, Albert, and the sky dragon Ether, stood a colossal dark GRey
pyramid. A navy blue path of light traced the way from where they stood, across the
desert sand towards its entrance. The three followed the path into the obsidian structure.

Inside the pyramid was hollow, with glowing flurries dancing about the darkness,
occasionally lighting its walls. An electric glowing orb sat upon an altar, seated on a
platform, overlooking the abyss within. The three approached the orb and with every step
it GRew larger and larger, until it had enveloped them and the hollow interior.

In a flash of light they were in the Lost City of Mirage. Meanwhile….

Emperor Blade looked down over an altar, standing high above and over the rest of the
world. Two cherubs, one on each side of the altar, carved from marble and gold. Holy
water poured down from all sides of the altar, and spilled over level and level in the
stepped pyramid below. In the center of the altar, underneath the cherubs, hovering over a
gold pan, was a flesh like orb, arcing with electricity and with a deep blue glow within,
like a liquid gem.

“Opal, I demand you GRant me your power!” Blade demanded the orb.

The command fails and the orb summons the void around him to attack. Ready for the
threat, he begins again…

“Demons that rest outside Eiedos, I call on thee for one and only one deed. THOSE
WHO TREAD FROM THE LIGHT COME FORTH AND GRANT ME MASTERY
OVER THE OPAL OF SANDRE!” Blade demanded.

A room can be seen with a golden key sat upon a pedestal. From the golden key spirits
are released. The spirits swarm over the key and then are released, flying out of the room.

“Mwa ha ha! Ha ha ha!” Blade laughs viciously. But only for a second drunk with power,
for three Keeper’s appear, surrounding him atop the stepped pyrimad.

“Cease your vile actions Blade,” the first Keeper announces.



                                            170
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    7
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

“Do not test me Keeper,” Blade replies.

The Keeper says, “Wrath of the Sun”, the powerful attack slays Blade and he falls face
forward into the fountain waters of the shrine. The opal glows and Blade is resurrected.
He stands up and smiles a hideous smile. He says the words, “Eiedos Barrier.”
The Keepers all attack at once, but none of their attacks leave even a scratch. Blade casts
the spell “Ultima.” The opal glows, Blade glows, and then an explosion more powerful
than that of a nuclear bomb is released, engulfing the pyramid and the Keepers. As the
dust settles, only Blade and the shrine remain. Blade laughs another hideous laugh and
then vanishes, remarking, “What a joke….”

A red, translucent orb floats beneath the ocean of Terra, encasing an ancient island that
sank long ago, protecting its lonely inhabitants from the gushing seawater around it.
Seren, Albert, and Ether find themselves teleported through the barrier into an aged
gothic cathedral within.


The people of the Lost City of Mirage seemed to be completely oblivious to neither the
location nor the status of their city. As the three of them went from person to person they
explored a ghost town, complete with its ghost occupants. Some spoke of Terra of old,
some spoke of the fantastic place called Eiedon and of Eiedos. One man, an elderly man,
rambled about something called an “Opal of Power” but upon pressure his rants turned to
gibberish. In the center of town, the elder of mirage lived

“How may I help you three?”

“We are trying to find a Deko reactor, have you heard of these devices?” Albert asked.

“Yes, indeed I have. They are distant from here though, of what concern are they to
you?”

“We need to reach one of them. One that is unreachable by any other means.”

“Ahh…yes. The Tundra Reactor. The most distant and most powerful.”

“You know of it?”

“Yes. I can send you there. But if I do, there is no way back other than a dangerous hike
back through the artcic.”

“We have no other choice.”

“Well then, prepare yourselves. Peruse our shops and make sure you are ready. Then I
will send you there.”


                                            171
1
7
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


Seren, Albert, and Ether gathered their supplies and equipment they would need. The
elder opened a doorway in the back of his home. Through the doorway was a jeweled
mirror. The elder motioned for them to step through the mirror. When they did, they
found themselves in a canyon bathed in white by winter. Ahead of them a tall metal
cylinder, with a single rounded entrance door, rose high up into the air. The voice of the
elder echoed through the mirror portal,

“This is the last of the Deko Reactors. It is the most powerful, so massive it reaches deep
into the bowels of the planet. The pit beyond and behind the reactor is a wound on the
planet’s surface, and was caused from when, one time, the reactor overheated. The
reactor has been sealed for centuries, but you will be able to travel to Eiedos should you
descend into the wound behind it. Good luck.”

The three of them approached the edge of the crevasse. Ether spoke, “This reactor was
built over a source of GReat energy. I can sense it. Let us go. The only way is to leap.”

The three leapt into the abyss.

Seren plummeted downwards. First was nothing but cold dark black. Then a glimmer of
warm red light. Then, instantly, a colossal, glowing red orb with a bright orange center
shining through its translucent skin. Seren dove into the orb, and dove further and further
towards its orange center. His plummet slowed and he found himself gently slow to a
stop and rest upon a floating island of stone.

In front of Seren, branching out like connected organs from the center, stood the orange
core of the orb. The organs outside of it pulsed with a beating of an invisible heart. A
voice spoke, “forward leads to the place of the god, shall you go?” Seren nodded yes in
his mind and found himself whisked forward, further towards the center.

Seren penetrates the orange center and sees a black whirlwind appear in front of him,
sucking everything around it into it. Seren enters the vacuum and finds himself propelled
through a Deko Tube, one different from the ones he had travelled through before. Then
he is spit out of the Deko Tube, onto the GRound in a small pit. Around him is land made
of blue stone, arcing with violet and GReen bolts of electricity. He climbs out of the pit
and leaves the cave the pit was in to discover himself in another-worldy place.

High above, in the sky, is not a sun or moon but an immense gas nebulae shedding light
upon the planet. Out of a humongous canyon before Seren, arises what could only be
described as a Demon. Hundreds of stories tall and as wide as a city block, the alien
demon spoke into Seren’s mind.

“He ha ha! Welcome to my realm, the world of Arcanna. I am Lortd Nebuchadnezzar,”
the demon said.


                                            172
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     7
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3


The world went white. Seren has a flashback. He sees himself plummeting from Sky
Island towards the ocean and being sucked up by Bimia Triangle. He hears the voice of
the Master.

“Seren, I sent you my son, as a savior for your people, to aid your world from its dark
fate. I sent you to stop the hellspawn, to send you to places that are hard for me to reach,”
the Master said.

Seren is now floating above the planet at the time when the Comet strikes Terra. He sees
Neil go into the crater and touch the comet that has just crashed into the planet. He sees
the wave of energy released from it, causing Armageddon. He sees Neil transformed into
one of the Keepers. He sees Sarah, his wife, with child. Finally, Seren is back on the
planet Arcanna, but now has been transformed into an angel.

Seren draws his sword, which is bathed in fire and white light. The scene is Terra, 3500
A.D. again. Seren sees his sister running in a field on Sky Island outside of a town. Now
Seren sees the same island, Sky Island, in the ocean in the time before it was raised into
the sky.

Seren draws his sword, flies towards Nebucchadnezar, and begins to battle him. Sarah
and Neil are living on the island, among others. Sarah is pregnant and with child. Sarah
names her child Sonon and says, “I had a dream. One day we will have a king from our
line who will undo the horrors we have let loose.”

Seren sees the island with Neil and Sarah raise into the sky. Seren sheathes his sword as
Nebucchadnezzer falls, dead, into the canyon from which he rose. All of Arcanna begins
to collapse, flashes of white lite go off all over the planet as it dies. A white light
explodes near Seren and he finds himself no longer on Arcanna. He is in the Master’s
Kingdom, Serenity. The voice of the Master speaks to him,

“Seren. I cannot return you to the place in time where you were before entering the Hell
planet Arcanna through the Core of Terra. Should I do this you would be caught in a
permanent temporal loop, living your life over and over without meaning. I wish to bring
you home Seren, to where you belong. Seren my son, all of the life energy has been
drained from the beings of magic on Terra. Blade has accumulated enough energy to
release the three demi-gods imprisoned within the Keeper’s Holy Palace. The Keeper’s
Holy Palace contains the original Deko Tower used to drain the life force from the planet,
the original models for Sandre…Each of the original Deko Towers had transformed a
human being into a dark, eternal being…it had spawned one of the demi-gods now
imprisoned within.”

“And Blade,,,? He is like them?” Seren asked the voice of the Master.




                                            173
1
7
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Yes. And he wishes to release them with their towers to join him in on his crusade to
destroy me,” the Master replied.

“And what has happened to Terra in my absence?” Seren asked.

“With the final phase of Sandre’s activation and the engaging of the Opal, another wave
of destruction swept over Terra, crushing the remaining homes and villages that had
sprung up, finalizing the planets death,” the Master said.

Seren floated gently, bobbing up and down, in front of a massive sphere. The core of
Arcanna had shed its crust and mantle, and this was all that remained. The sphere was a
humongous sphere shaped outer shell, containing a powerful energy within. The sphere
burst releasing blinding light all around. Seren saw all white then was pulled into a realm
outside of spacetime. In the void he saw rows upon rows of red bodies, glowing with
electricity arcing from body to body.

“These are the imprisoned souls, those taken by the demi-god Lords of the Towers,” the
Master said as Seren floated, looking on, in the void outside time.

The Master guided Seren gently with his invisible hand through the world outside of
spacetime. The Master said, “These imprisoned people were made of the energy you call
Deko, a different substance than what your soul is comprised of. The one you know as
Ome Sumac was one of them.”

Seren was taken to a different region outside time, looking in on space and its many
galaxies and stars. Suddenly he finds himself being pulled towards a worm hole that has
opened in space.

“Master? Where are you taking me? Master?”

There was no answer. In the shadows of space before him the translucent figure of a
demon like Nebucchadnezzar appeared. It laughed maliciously and said,

“I am the demon Temptation.”

Seren unsheathed his sword and his eyes began to glow yellow.

“You think you can fight me? It was I who brought the comet to your pitiful little planet.
I waved it to the side and threw it off its course to strike your home world. It was I who
changed the entire history of your pitiful little world and your pitiful little lives,”
Temptation echoed.

Temptation held out his claw of a hand and resting in it was the figure of Blade.
Temptation closed his hand and the figure of Blade disappeared.


                                            174
                                                                                      1
                                                                                      7
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


Blade’s voice echoed out, “My lord and master Temptation, destroy the worthless
creature. He is nothing and a waste!” The amulet around Blade’s neck began to glow.
“Destroy him I say!”

Temptation said, “Remember who is your master Blade. But if you so ask, I shall destroy
him.”

Temptation reached his translucent hand towards Seren, but suddenly Seren is whisked
away, leaving nothing for Temptation to GRasp but empty space.

“Damn,” Blade said.

Eiedon

Seren appeared upon a floating island made of crystal and gold, riding thu e invisible
ethereal waves of the void outside time. To his left was the frozen figure of Albert, and to
his right the figure of Ether. Seren stood up, brushed the dust off of him and suddenly
Albert and Ether came to life.

“How long have you been here?” Seren asked.

“It seems only moments ago we were at the Tundra Reactor,” Albert replied.

“We heard the voice of the Master and then found ourselves here,” Ether said.

“I picked them out of time and set them here for you for your assistance,” the Master
spoke into Seren’s mind. “You are in the ethereal city of Eiedon.”

The three walked forward towards the Citadel of Eiedon.

The Master said, “Seren, Emperor Blade has the full strength of the demon demi-gods.
This bodes badly for your world. He now easily has enough power to dominate other,
weaker, worlds. You must speak with Eiedos, he will be able to help you. He was the one
who imprisoned the demi-god demons. You will find him in the citadel.”

The Citadel was a beautiful church filled with fountains of blue plasma like water,
crucifixes, and pedestals bearing holy white light.

In the very center of the chapel was a large crucifix, covered in vines, set in stone.
Seren steps in front of the crucifix and voice echoes,

“I am the son of the Master, they call me Eiedos, by the name of my earthly birthplace.
My father created your universe and you call him your Master, your creator. I have been


                                             175
1
7
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

placed in charge of governance and the watching of your universe, under the authority of
my father. Unfortunately, unlike my father who ascended, I am a part of time as you are
and not as powerful as my father. But whatever power my father has may be delegated to
me. The being you call Blade is gaining power, GRowing stronger every moment, and
has freed the most powerful demons from the foci dimension and even has power over
my father’s Temporal Crystal, that controls the gateway you call the Temporal Triangle.
His rise to power places a clear danger.”

A quake struck the City of Eiedon, and a soldier ran into the Church and said,

“Lord Eiedos. A power has breached the dimension barrier.”

Suddenly Blade materialized inside the Temple, in front of Eiedos, ready to challenge
him.

“Fool. You think yourself a god? You think yourself capable of challenging me?” Eiedos
said to Blade.

“Ha1 You call yourself a god? You are nothing more than a puny smudge upon the
history of the universe,” Blade said.

“Give me your best shot demon,” Eiedos said.

Blade summoned fire and ice, lightining and wind against Eiedos but to no effect.
Everything GRew dark around the temple, and only Eiedos and Blade could be seen, lit
by an eerie, unearthly light.

“Liber….Ziber….Viber…Zaber…Zieber….Zom…” Eiedos chanted.

“What are you rambling about you fool? Just attack me!” Blade demanded.

“Now the chosen time has come…” Eiedos continued chanting.

Around Eiedos glyphs and emblems of a foreign and sacred nature had appeared, lit by
the same strange ethereal lights that lit the city. Eiedos’ sword appeared over Blade’s
head; a thin, sharp blade with a crucifix for a hilt. Stars of light were released from the
sword and struck the Emperor, throwing him backwards.

“Golgotha Sword, cast Holy!” Eiedos commanded his weapon.

“Power of the Opal! Opal, summon the void!” Blade commanded.

The Opal appeared and the fabric of the universe began to tear around Eiedos, forming
vacuums, pulling Eiedos toward them.


                                             176
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     7
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7


“Haha! What power do you have now son of the master? Feel the power of my vortex, of
the void. I shall send you to the Infanny Nexus, never to return!” Blade screamed in
delight.

More and more holes appeared throughout Eiedon. Eiedos summoned more guards to
help him fight Blade, but could do nothing as the very fabric of existence was having
holes punched out of it by Blade’s Opal.

“Lord Eiedos, the barrier around the city…its giving way!” a guard yelled over the noise.
Spirits and beams of light fired over the village, electricity arced from place to place, and
columns of fire rose up, destroying pieces of the city, one by one.

“Welcome to my hell.” Blade said and vanished. The voids appeared around Seren and
his companions. They had no weight to throw in a battle against pure negative space. All
of them poured out magic spell after magic spell and attack after attack at the voids to no
avail. Finally, Eiedos appeared, breaking through the negative zones.

“I had to break through using the holy powers. We need to trap Blade. Follow me and get
ready to break through the void. We need to make it through to the Vorpal Realm and
reGRoup. We have no other choice. Follow!” Eiedos said and dashed through a portal.
Seren and his companions followed.

Seren, Albert, Ether, and Eiedos appeared in the City of Spirits in the Vorpal Realm.

“Is this the Vorpal Realm?” Seren asked.

“Yes. I am sorry Seren. I underestimated him. It is my fault we lost Eiedon,” Eiedos said.

“Ahead is a portal to the City of Spirits. We can ask the beings here for assistance.”

Before them were two colossal walls. In the center was a small elliptical portal, with an
intertwined metallic design. Once inside, they made their way to an old man, the elder
spirit, who sat within the Vorpal Shrine. The Vorpal shrine was filled with watches and
clocks, as well as weapons and relics of forgotten alien worlds. Trapezoidal portals
looking on to different peridos of time in different worlds throughout the universe
floated, swimming, through the thick air.

“Those who have fought evil in the past spoke to the Master and he GRanted them
powerful gifts. These people wielded these gifts and in time passed them on. They used
their own energy and life force to protect these gifts,” the elder said.




                                            177
1
7
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“A new evil has come into play this time that threatens all existence in its madness. My
name is Odyssey, these things I have witnessed. To some I am known by another name,
Father Time.”

“Let these guards rest and let the power sealed here be used to defeat the force of the
demons. Enter the portal,” Father Time said.

The four enter the portal and a beam of mystical light shines on all of them. Their
weapons and armor and very beings are transformed and endued with Vorpal powers.

“Go now, return to Terra!” Father Time commanded. Eiedos raises his hand and opened a
gateway. The island that the City of Spirits stands upon begins to fall apart and dissolve
into nothing. The gateway closes and Seren, Albert, Eiedos, and Ether arrive at the base
of Sky Pinnacle on Sky Island, back at the home world of Terra. Seren’s mother finds the
four, and calls for help from the city. You are home.




Part III
                       In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with
                       God, and the Word was God. The same was in the
                       beginning with God. All things were made by him; and
                       without him was not any thing made that was made.
                       John 1:1-3



The Final Act

“Sir, are you okay? What happened to you and how did you wind up here in such a flux?”
said the middle-aged woman.

Seren was collapsed upon the GRound, apparently using a nearby boulder as a pillow
when Shirley found him. Seren brushed the sand out of his eyes and off of his face. He
was at the falls of the GReat abyss in Serenity, near the abyss he had fallen through so
many years ago to arrive in the past. Before him was the sacred tower of Sky Pinnacle.
For hundreds of years his people had followed a special tradition. When they had come of
age, they were GRanted the privilege to climb Sky Pinnacle, to the highest point
accessible in the world, and speak directly with their God, M’sra, the Master. The day
Seren had fallen he had been training with his father for ceremonies for that very event.


                                            178
                                                                                   1
                                                                                   7
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 9


He looked around. Other than Shirley there was not a soul in sight. Ether, Eiedos, and his
brother Albert had not arrived here it seemed. But nevertheless, Seren had more
important things to worry about at this point. Here stood his mother Shirley, whom he
had not seen since he was a teenager. He was certain it was her…if her hair were to be
dyed from its present silver to its original deep black she would not have aged a day.

“Don’t you recognize me?” Seren asked.

“Recognize you?” Shirley replied.

“I can’t believe it….you don’t recognize me…” Seren started…upset.

“Of course I recognize you Seren my son….How could I ever forget your eyes…they are
your father’s eyes…welcome home,” Shirley said.

Shirley lead Seren back to their home to recuperate, gather supplies, and form a plan.
Seren didn’t know if he could gather the courage and the heart to tell his mother that the
man he was preparing to battle was his own father, and her husband who she thought had
died.

“Mom?” Seren asked.

“Yes?” Shirley replied.

“I have something I have to talk to you about….and its upsetting. I think you should sit
down,” Seren began.

Seren told her the story. How he had plummeted down through the falls’ abyss along with
his father Sonon and his brother Albert. How the temporal triangle had opened to save
him and dad. How he had appeared in Terra’s past, before the scorched earth and the
horrid tower. How is father had appeared in the past at the beginning of the thousand year
war and created the empire of Domon. How when Seren appeared in Zig after passing
through the temporal triangle, Sonon felt it and recruited Seren because he reminded him
of his long lost son. How Sonon had done what ever he could to gain enough power to
bring his son back. And how the power had driven him insane. And how his heart had
GRown empty and nothing filled it except for the lust for more power. How, Sonon had
forgotten his own name and all who knew him now knew him as “Emperor Blade.”

Shirley nodded her head, then looked to the GRound, strong, with tears beading up in her
eyes and then rolling down her cheek.

“What do we do Seren? What do we do?” Shirley cried.




                                           179
1
8
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“I don’t know. I am going back to the waterfall abyss and climbing Sky Pinnacle. It is my
right as a citizen of Serenity. When I am given the chance to speak with the Master I will
ask him what can be down. I cannot do this alone any longer. I can’t fix it by myself,”
Seren said and walked out the door, backpack on, sword strapped to his back, walking
slowly, trudging towards the north and Sky Pinnalce.

Seren approached the vast abyss. It was filled with a thick misty fog. Covered in those
fog clouds, one could not see through it. One could not see through to the fact that the
abyss was nothing more than a massive hole punched out of the island, from the top side
to the bottom side. And through it poured the waters from the natural springs of the
mountains all around, and the spring of holy water that sprung from the very top of Sky
Pinnacle, that cascaded down each tier until it poured out into the abyss and onto the
world.

The bridge over the abyss and up to the massive, pencil thin tower of Sky Pinnacle stood
before Seren. He stepped forward. Then another step. Then another.

Upwards Seren went. Up the cliffs of the mountain that Sky Pinnacle sat upon. Then into
a small tunnel on the face the of the cliff. Then through ornate tunnels and ampitheatres
in the mountain, and then outside of a fancy building, covered in silver and jewels. Then
up ladders, ledges separated by tens of feet, each ledge supported by a three solid pillars.
Upwards, upwards, thinning air, thinning supports, thinning ledges. And finally, one, tall
solid pillar with ladder like stairs carved in the front of it, with misty clouds hugging
around it.

Seren climbed atop the very tip of Sky Pinnacle and stood up. The pilGRimage among
the citizens of Serenity was a showing of faith to M’sra, to climb up to such dangerous
heights with such perilous odds. Seren’s feet covered an ancient emblem that no man on
Terra at this time knows the meaning.

Two bolts of lightning, one red, one blue, struck either side of Seren. A deep voice
echoed off the mountains around.

“Welcome warrior of light. How long has it been since we last spoke?”

“I’m not sure oh holy one. I come here asking for not only counsel but your assistance,”
Seren said.

“Hmmm…I am aware of this. I see you have finally donned my armor of Vorpal.”

“Yes milord. I was told it would be necessary.”

“Well Seren. I wish, for your struggles and your faith, to give you something truly rare. Is
that ok with you?”


                                            180
                                                                                   1
                                                                                   8
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 1


“Why yes, of course!”

“Very well.”

In less time than a flash Seren found himself in a room made of crystal and gold. In front
of him were three large windows, each with a colored flame burning brightly within. The
floor shone like rubies. And in the center was a small enGRaving in marble upon the
floor, symbolically identical to the figure atop Sky Pinnalce.

“Where am I Master? Are you still here?” Seren asked.

“Yes I am. I am always here, Seren. I am about to give you a privilege, one that only two
others have ever been given.”

“Really?” Seren replied.

The three flames burned so bright nothing in the room was visible. There was only
blinding light. As it died down, a colossal, powerful warrior appeared.

“This was my form when I was simply a sentient being as you are. The only ones who
have seen me like this and are still living are Eiedos, my son, and your father.”

“Why my father though? He is the epitome of evil?”

“Not always Seren, and you know this. Once he was a GReat warrior and King of the
Kingdom of Serenity. He had declared that he would wage a war on the Emperor Blade
and save the scorched earth by destroying the tower. He wanted so badly to save Terra. It
is a pity. At one point after he was thrown back in time he realized who he was. He was
the very thing he set out to destroy. It was then that the evil set in.”

“Is there a way we could save who he was? Is it possible to undo the evil in his soul?”

“That is for you to discover Seren. I brought you here for another reason as well. I wish
to give you these sacred gifts.”

“The first gift is a piece of knowledge. It is knowledge of the most supreme evil in our
galaxy. It is a demon god who calls himself Nebuchadnezzar. It was he who used his
power to manipulate spacetime and deviate the comet from is target, a star, and made it
crash land on Terra. It is he who torched the waters. It is he who truly scorched the
earth.”

“Nebucha….”




                                           181
1
8
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“He exists in another dimension and would give anything to enter this and unleash his
unholy power. He planted the seed of evil in your father. He manipulates Blade and Tech
Demital amongst others, twisting their thoughts and actions to further his own devices.”

“I have another gift of knowledge for you. I wish you to know that your lineage, those
who dwell in the sky world of Serenity, were once Keepers like those you met in the
underworld of the dwarves. You are descendent of the Keepers who rose the island of
Serenity into the Sky.”

“The third gift I have for you is this, the VORPAL sword. It will complete your Vorpal
arsenal, and there is no GReater sword in this universe. There are none that can contest
it.”

“My final gift is a gift of service to you and your people Seren. I will use my unlimited
power to destroy the final reactor, the Hidden Reactor that was unreachable to you. With
all of the reactors destroyed, Sandre can no longer manage its defense shields. This
means that you will finally be able to enter the tower in this age, in its final stage, destroy
it, and confront Blade on equal terms.”


Columns of fire and lightning poured down out of the sky onto an island in the middle of
the tropical ocean. Afterwards, nothing remained but ash. Blade and Tech Demital looked
on in jealousy at the island from within Sandre…

“What power….An island annihilated like swatting a fly…”

“I shall now return thee to Earth, Seren of Serenity. Remember, you have the blood line
of gods. Speak with the spirits of Terra and they will aid you. And listen, only you may
wear the Vorpal Armaments. They will keep you safe and secure, and of all else,
remember, I am there with you always. Destroy the tower Seren, for that is the most
important mission of all.”

A beam of light surrounded Seren and he was whisked away. The beam of energy
dropped him upon an island in the middle of the ocean, surrounded entirely by mountains
and unreachable by any other means. On the island, in its center was a small village. The
valley holding the village is known as “The Valley of the Templars.”

The people of the village had a leader named Amon. According to their legend, the
Master came down from Heaven to speak directly with Amon. The Templars who lived
in the valley had the most powerful weapons on the planet. Seren was arrested while in
the village for trespassing into the valley and taken to their leader, Amon. He was in a
shrine built into a cliff side in the back of the valley.




                                             182
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    8
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

“We found this one teleported into the valley by some unknown force,” the guard said to
Amon.

“How is this possible? No known beings have the ability or technology to teleport
through our barrier,” Amon replied.

“Has something happened to the barrier?” asked another guard.

Suddenly the Vorpal Sword given to Seren by the Master begins to glow.

“Vorpal Sword! And Vorpal Armor! They are the stuff of knight’s dreams. I cannot
believe they exist!” Amon shouted.

“They were given to me by beings from outside of time and by the Master himself,”
Seren replied.

“Incredible. See this necklace? It was given to me also by the Master, as part of my
promise to protect the spirit of our planet, Gaia,” Amon said.

“Mother Earth…her power is equal to the tower with all of its reactors online. Only
Mother Earth can release the energy from the keys…” Amon said.

“Keys? And who is this Gaia?” Seren asked. He had heard them mentioned several times
now but was not sure of their significance.

“Do you wish to speak with her?” Amon asked.

“Yes,” said Seren.

“In the Shrine of Gaia she will speak with you. Take my necklace, the Vorpal Necklace,
with it she will see that I trust you and you have my best wishes,” Amon said to Seren.

The shrine of Gaia was hidden away deep within a wood in the mountains of the
templar’s island. Its entrance was marked by two arcane pillars and could be found by
taking the old stone road from the entrance of the Valley of Templars southwards and
then westwards.

Inside the thicket marked by the two arcane pillars is an elliptical portal. This magical
portal teleports the user into the Shrine of Gaia, a black, empty, void with a gargantuan
crystal floating in the center. When Seren entered the shrine, his necklace was lifted off
of his neck by some unknown force and pulled towards the crystal. When the two
touched, the crystal shattered and the necklace fell to the GRound.




                                            183
1
8
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

A being without face or skin or bone, of crystalline glowing energy appeared before
Seren. He was no longer in the shrine, but back at the location of the thicket. The arcane
pillars had crumbled and where the thicket had been lay only burnt trees.

“I am Gaia. Guardian Spirit of Terra. I know of what you have done to heal me and our
planet. For this I thank thee. I will come to your aid in the future, should you so ever need
it. My energy, once pent up in the crystal, I have now set free to roam and follow you. I
shall return to the life flow of the world and my soul shall dissipate. Do not fret it does
not mean death. From henceforth I shall try and begin to heal Terra.

Meanwhile

Amon was standing before his shrine doors, blocking them. In front of him were a dozen
soldiers, whose appearance was completely foreign and alien to Seren. He had never seen
anyone like them in all of the kingdoms of Terra. In front of the soldiers stood Blade,
with Tech Demital to his right.

“Tell me where is the Vorpal Amulet! Tell me!” Blade demanded.

“I do not have the amulet. You are wasting your time here. I am warning you, back away
from me,” Amon commanded.

“Ha! Oh I am so afraid of you Templar,” Blade jeered.

“Men, get them!” Amon said.

Amon’s Templar Knights leaped down from the cliffs and came out of hiding to attack
Blade’s men. The twelve of Blade’s men began to change shape and transformed into
dragons.

“That is right Amon. I am now in command of soldiers from the race of the dark dragons.
Both men and dragon in form. They are more powerful than any man. Let Domon rot.”

“The Templars are not to be trifled with Blade,” Amon said and stuck the point of his
blade at the emperor’s throat.

The tide then turned in the favor of the Templars and many of the dark dragon soldiers
died. Meanwhile, Amon and Blade continued to spar.

“Is that all you’ve got Emperor?” Amon jeered.

“No, I don’t think so,” Blade replied.




                                            184
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     8
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

The Templars began to go after Blade. Tech Demital leaped down to support Blade. Tech
Demital engaged the Templars while Amon took on Blade. The Templars suffer heavy
casualties. Tech Demital became wounded and began limping out of the valley. Blade
and Amon were face to face again. Suddenly a voice was heard yelling in the
backGRound.

“No! Don’t do it! Back away from him Amon! It’s a trap!” Eiedos screamed over the
clashing of swords.

Seren appears and runs to rescue Amon from Blade before its too late but is surrounded
by Blade’s reinforcement, more Dark Dragon Soldiers.

Albert appeared along with Eiedos. Blade cast the void spell on Albert, and a tear in
space time starts pulling on Al, trying to pull him into nothingness. He tries casting it on
Seren and Eiedos too. Eiedos begins being pulled into the nothingness as well. However
Seren finds himself unaffected.

“What is this nonsense? How are you not affected Seren?”

All of the Vorpal Equipment was glowing in a radiant, holy glow.

“That’s it!”

“It is my time now to defeat you! Prepare to die Blade!” Seren said.

Seren threw every spell he knew at Blade, but each was neutralized by Blade and his
energy Opal. Blade’s dark attacks were neutralized by the holy white pearl Vorpal Armor
and Vorpal Necklace.

“GR….you think you are so powerful Seren,” Blade GRumbled in anger.

Blade begins to chant and the opal GRows darker and darker. He rains meteoric fire upon
Seren, and uses the strongest of magical spells on him but all of his spells are neutralized.

“My god protects me. He is just. He will not let you defeat me. You shall fail,” Seren
said.

Blade vanished within a beam of light. Seren, yelling “You shall not escape!”, entered the
portal after him.

“You fool! You should not have followed me here. I shall suck out the souls of your
friends!” Blade said. Blade tries to suck the soul of Eiedos but it backfires and Blade
collapses. Your companions wake up. You begin to fight him again but he just teleports
away.


                                            185
1
8
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“He is a coward. He just keeps teleporting away. How can we fight him like this?” Albert
asked.

“The wielder of the Vorpal can defeat him…that is you Seren,” Amon said.

Blade casts a spell called “Darkness Lore” that opens a wormhole. Seren, Amon, Eiedos,
and others enter the wormhole after him.

Everyone is standing upon a floating piece of stone in some unknown dimension. Seren
points the Vorpal Sword at Blade and it flashes red. The sword gains a life of its own and
begins to float away from Seren, glowing all the while. Meanwhile, Blade attacks Amon
and Eiedos and propels them into the void of the unknown dimension around them. They
tumble through space.

Hundreds of spirits enter Blade’s body, thrashing him around. His body begins to glow
different colors, from blue to red back to blue again.

“The spirits of demons who dwell here are now within my own soul. I can feel their heart
beats in my chest, and I can feel their breath within my lungs. I am stronger than ever!”
Blade boasts. His eyes GRow a dark red and silver horns project from his forehead. He
uses his new found power to knock Seren and others away from him, propelling them far
into the void of the unknown dimension surrounding them. Blade vanishes….

Path to Armageddon

The Temporal Triangle opened about six feet above a sand dune on the shore near the
base of the volcano upon which Sandre was situated in the world of the scorched earth.
All together, out of the triangle plopped Seren, Albert, Ether, Eiedos, and Amon. And to
the northwest was a village, and directly north of that village a super massive volcano.
With the destruction of all of Sandre’s reactors, life had started to breathe again upon the
scorched earth. Hence the village that had sprouted up, so close to Sandre.

Seren had GRown worried about what ever happened to M and why he hadn’t had an
unpleasant visit from him lately. Ahead, the majestic volcano GRowled deeply as the
earth shifted with a small tremor. The party made their way towards the town at its base.

The people of the village knew all about Sandre’s role in the world and its dark power.
They lived there feeding off of its energy. The water that came from the springs of the
tower held magical, life giving powers. The waters had filled up the crater made by the
volcano, and in its place a jungle had taken root, feeding off of the waters. Many different
races dwelled in the village feeding off its energy, but it was predominately made of both
human and elf kind.



                                            186
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     8
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

The elder of the village told Seren about how Sandre has two external towers, one on
each side of the main tower. These two external towers act as back up generators for the
main portion of the weapon. The two towers would have to be deactivated or destroyed if
Seren and his companions ever wanted to step foot inside. But there were worse problems
afoot.

“A GReat machine has surfaced on the road upwards and into the volcano. Because of it
we can no longer gather food or spring water from the jungle. You are the only ones
strong enough to combat it. Please help us. There is no other plant life on this desolate
planet. That path is the very same path that leads to Sandre, and the machine you will
have to face if you ever plan on entering the tower. If you return here after you defeat the
machine and give us word that it is safe to enter, I will give you the key to the Crater
Shrine,” the village elder to said to the warriors.

“What is the Crater Shrine?” Seren asked.

“You will know soon, when the time arrives you must venture there,” said the elder.

Seren and his companions traveled northwards and arrived at the base of the dormant
volcano which housed the base of Sandre in its center. As they made their way along the
winding path up along the side of the dormant volcano, the GRound beneath them began
to rumble. Thinking it a normal vibration form the volcano, they continued on.. Suddenly,
the cliff walls near them began to shake and crack. The GRound fell away to reveal a
gigantic mechanical foot. Then, on the other side of the path, another mechanical foot
appeared the same way. Dust shook from both the feet and a raspy mechanical voice
echoed through air.

“I am the Gigas Dwarf a robot designed by Babel. I was lost beneath the rubble and stone
of this mountain, covered in eruption after eruption. The powerful Lord Blade, Emperor
of Terra has revived me in order to annihilate you. Prepare for battle little ones!”

The Emperor had revived a massive automaton, a robot calling itself Gigas Dwarf that
was literally the size of a mountain.

“Look, Al, Amon, at the Gigas Dwarf’s feet are metallic access panels. Forget fighting
this thing one on one, I bet we could go inside of it and shut it down!” Seren said.

Amon and Eiedos kept the monstrosity entertained while Seren and Albert held onto its
foot for dear life, tryimg and then finally succeeding in dislodging the access panels. The
two swung themselves inside, and then Amon, Eiedos, and the others followed suit.

“Incredible! This thing is a mechanical giant and from the looks of it, it appears to have
been built by the Keepers,” Eiedos said.




                                            187
1
8
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Very impressive,” said Amon.

“I’ve been meaning to ask you Eiedos, what power do you think my GReedy father seeks
now?” asked Seren.

“Do you remember Blade speaking of Nebucchadnezzar at all while you were GRowing
up in Domon?” asked Eiedos.

“When my father landed in the past he took the Monastary of the Citadel Knights under
control and became a GReat leader, rechristening the land as Domon. But with GReater
power comes GReater capacity to do not only good but evil. The demon
Nebucchadnezzar corrupted my father’s heart and mind and now he seeks power over
God himself. He doesn’t understand that a demon is manipulating his soul, trying for his
own release,” Seren said.
“Then why are you here? What I don’t understand is how you and father were thrown
back in time and not I. Why only you two?” Albert asked.

“I know the answer to that. The demon created this time loop on purpose, he created this
cycle and so he took advantage of the moment when Seren and Sonon fell from the sky
and purposely opened a gateway to swallow up Sonon and take him under his control.
The Master, being wiser than the demon, held the gate open longer, allowing Seren to
pass through the portal as well. The Master forewsaw that if Seren passed back in time
also, that all of his would occur and Seren could challenege and defeat Blade,” Eiedos
answered.

The giant mechanical dwarves foot shifted.

“Its moving!” Albert announced.

“Come, this is no time for chatting. We need to get to the head of this thing and shut it
down,” Amon answered.

The GRoup of them hurried to the top of the Gigas Dwarf. Meanwhile, the machine had
made its way up the mountain towards the jungle.

They reached the Gigas Dwarf’s head. They found a large pressure engine.

“If we release the pressure form this valve, the automaton will shut off,” Eiedos said.

“I’ll do it,” Seren said. He turned the valve but it stuck. Amon came to assit, but they
busted the valve and the machine began to go into overdrive.

“We broke the release valve. The machine is going to explode with us inside of it!” Seren
yelled to the others.


                                            188
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    8
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 9


On either end of the release valve were to giant energy orbs. One night black and one
pearl white.

“I’ll have to try and teleport us out,” yelled Eiedos over the sounds of the overheating
automaton. As Eiedos prepared his spell, suddenly the two orbs began to glow and hover
and prepared to attack them.

“I’ll hold these things off, whatever they are….” Seren said.

Al made way for the pressure release valve and in one swift pull not only shut it off but
busted off the valve completely.

“We need to get out of here” Albert said.

“I aGRee, come on. Let’s make a run for it,” Seren said, still fending off the two glowing
orbs.

Eiedos, Seren, Albert and others began to make their escape when they suddenly found
themselves frozen in their steps. A voice rang out, “Not so fast,” said the voice. Blade
materialized out of nowhere.

The ladder down into the base of the Gigas Dwarf vanished at his command.

“How dare you!” said Seren.

“Ha ha. You are powerless and weak. It is almost amusing, like stomping on ants,” Blade
said.

Seren tried to speak but found his mouth sealed shut and full of mush.

“But you are beginning to become annoying, just like the pests you resemble. I guess
now is as good a time as any to annihilate you,” Blade said. He snapped his fingers and
swirling blue energy leapt out from the sides of the interior of the Gigas Dwarf and arced
into Seren’s body.

“This is your end Seren…” Blade said.

On that note, Amon had been pulling self forward, inch by inch, to retrieve an ivory horn
that lay on the GRound near Seren. Normally it hung on his side, but had been knocked
to the GRound during Blade’s arrival.

Amon put his lips to the horn and blew as hard as possible. The horn lit up in a yellow
effervescence. Suddenly, around Amon appeared a dozen of his Templar Knights.


                                            189
1
9
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]



“Arrogant as always Blade....Knights free them.” Amon said. The knights cut the
invisible magical chains that bound Seren and the others.

“Watch your neck Templar, you are in my world,” said Blade.

“I have no fear of either you nor that damned elven tower you command,” said Amon.

“What a foolish thing to say,” said Blade. The opal materialized next to him and Blade
rested his hand on the top of it.

Sandre lit up like a struck lightning rod, magical energy swirling around it like an unholy
wind. The power of Sadnre fired into a vortex swirling at its peak. A vortex materialized
over the top of Amon and his Templar Knights, and from that vortex the same beam of
energy emerged and struck them, rendering them powerless, unconscious on the floor.

Suddenly another dozen Templars materialized in the back of the room and drew their
weapons, facing Blade.

“Ugh…like I said. Like insects,” Blade remarked.


With the second wave of Templars attacking Blade, his concentration on the barrier
protecting him from Seren, Eiedos, and others GRew weak. Seren and Eiedos engaged
Blade, Blade now battling both Seren and Eiedos hand to hand/ After a few minutes of
combat Blade said, “You clearly are not worthy of battling me. Varsus!”

Blade called and through the cavity that had been blown into the side of the Gigas Dwarf
during battle, a black dragon appeared, hovering, awaiting Blade’s command.

Blade beckoned the dragon, and its fiery breath breathed upon Seren, who now, weakend,
collapsed unconscious onto the floor.

Eiedos boiled with rage. Eiedos drew his sword, followed by Albert.

“Now we finish it!” Amon decalred.

Eiedos called upon the power of the Master Amon and his Templar Knights stood strong
and ready. Blade, feeling threatened that this really could be his end, vanished.
This Gigas Dwarf GRew unstable and the oversized robot began to self-destruct.




                                            190
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    9
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1




Flashbacks

Many Years Ago …

“Why would my ancestors be locked away in a sealed mausoleum like this?” Sonon
asked.

“I think we should thank the Master that it has been sealed away…What GReat evils
could be sealed within?” said Ome Sumc.

“Do we even dare upon it?” Sonon asked again.

“For so long..Is this why our people were sealed in these catacombs for centuries beneath
the crust of the Earth? Was it to wait until the day of Armageddon?” Sarai asked.

“Are all of you ready? I think it is time we break the seal,” Amon said.

“Here is the relic sir,” Sonon said as he handed Amon an oddly shaped key.

“By the power of the Keepers! Let our life force, channeled through this relic, break the
seal upon the sealed one,” they all announced in unison. A small spark of light left the
key and entered the magical seal on the door, dissolving it. The key disinteGRated in
Albert’s hands and the sealed doorway was thrust open by some invisible force, emitting
a blanket of ambient red light within the canyon.

The four keepers disappeared into the ominous, glowing red doorway.

The mountains that held the canyon that held the doorway they had just disappeared into
shook with a heavy earthquake. The land two itself into two, and an island slowly began
to float away from the main continent. A beam of beautiful rainbow energy propelled
itself into the air, shining high into the heavens. The waters around the island began to
rush down as the whole island itself caught lift and began to rise into the sky.

The four keepers walk forward through a pitch-black room, torches lighting magically to
the left and right of them. Finally they reach a negligibly lit raised platform with a
magical teleportation emblem carved in it. The four step onto the platform and vanish,
reappearing within a shrine of some sort.

The four keepers approached the three doors.

“One for each I guess…right Sonon?” said Ome Sumac in jest.


                                           191
1
9
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“Yes…My wife and I will take the door on the right. You can fight with Amon for the
center door,” said Sonon, slightly disGRusntled. Amon opened his doorway….

“Beautiful! I’m going in to explore!” Amon declared.

“Amazing, I’m going to take a look around here as well…” Ome Sumac said as he
ventured in through the portal in the middle.

“Well sweetie, here goes nothing, right?” Seren said to Sarai.

Seren opened the door on the right….and all went black.

Inside, present day…

“Where are we?” Albert asked.

“My father told me about this place…when I was just barely out of diapers,” Seren said.

“Our father told you about it?” Albert asked.

“Yes…Sonon did. This is the shrine that runs beneath Sky Pinnacle,” Seren said.

Amon turned towards Seren. “Your father and I visited this place before you were born.
Your father, out of all of us who had come from the Keeper’s bloodline, was the
strongest. He was after all, the King of Serenity, the Sky Island.”

“We came here to open one of the three ancient sealed doors that lay beyond this first
gate. We opened the wrong one…” Amon said.

“This place…it uses Sky Pinnacle like a lightning rod, similar to how Sandre
works…there are very similar to tell you the truth…and at the same time they are polar
opposites. Like Sandre, Sky Pinnacle can be used for good or evil. The portals below lead
to holy places throughout Serenity. However there is one door that opens up a hellish,
evil world,” Seren said.

“It was that door that mother sacrificed herself in to save the life of dad…by leaping
before the door that leads to the source of evil,” said Albert.

“Indeed,” said Seren.

“Yes…and when that was opened, Nebucchadnezzar gained his gateway into this
universe to begin his plots of manipulation and death,” said Amon.




                                           192
                                                                                    1
                                                                                    9
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

“While we are here we should make short work of this mission. I do not like being near
this shrine more than any of the other of you. It has brought so much misery. The weapon
we need should be within. And no matter what, stay away from the right portal when we
get inside. You will recognize it. It leads to the source of evil,” said Seren.




“For life force beating so strongly, this place must hold the sword of hope. I am certain of
it,” Seren said.

“We are going to need to bring a fourth keeper if we ever plan to open this doorway,”
Amon said while inspecting a fourth door that sat flush with the back, far wall of the
shrine.

“Not to mention how strong these monsters are in here that I have been fighting off single
handedly while you two play archaeologist….” Said Allbert.

“Come on, I know this place like the back of my hand. This passageway to the left leads
to a transportation room. We can take the portal to Sky Island. There is another one with
Keeper blood who might assist us,” Amon said.




Waterfall Shrines


Seren, Amon, and Albert arrive at the front gate of the Castle of Serenity, called Gait
Castle, hoping to recruit the King of Serenity in an effort to help them. Seren and Albert
being royalty we easily GRanted an audience and the many knights welcomed back the
Honorable Sir Amon, Commander of the Templar Knights.

While visiting the residents of the Castle of Serenity, the head scholar of Serenity
intercepted them and beckoned them to come to his chambers as quickly as possible.

“Everyone, come around this spell book, I think I know what Blade is after this time,” the
scholar said.

Almost immediately all of the scholars in the castle rushed into the room and surrounded
the head scholar.



                                            193
1
9
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“In the halls of judgement, at the very core of the earth, there is not only a vast amount of
energy, but this energy has spirit and life. It exists in the form of a being that is named
Gaia. Gaia is protecting something even GReater than it. So GReat that none may speak
its name,” the head scholar said.

“Within the dimension that the core reactors slipped into, such as Magnos did when you
battled it Seren, is an orb that holds the spirit that is born of the energy of the time portion
of the space time continuum. Like Gaia, it is energy that has taken the form of spirit.”

“This spirit, this universal spirit has a power so GReat it easily rivals any other spirit in
the universe. Gaia could be defeated quite easily if one possessed the universal spirit’s
strength. Even releasing the elder gods could be done in a blink of an eye to the possessor
of the universal spirit,” the scholar said.

“But do not fret quite yet Keepers. Blade is not quite strong enough yet and you have
dealt a heavy blow against him by shutting down the shields on the Tower and destroying
the generators. Blade had hoped to use Sandre to punch a hole in space time to allow
Nebucchadnezzar through,” the scholar said.

“But I thought there was already a gateway that could do that, the source of evil?” Seren
asked.

“The gateway is too small for a cosmic entity like Nebucchadnezzar. He can only extend
influence through there. Blade’s plan is a gateway of epic proportions, the size of super
massive black hole,” the scholar said.

“Not only would it allow the evil one through, it would also mean the end of life as we
know it…at least in this part of the universe,” said Amon.

“So he is trying to free the elder gods too?” asked Seren.

“Yes. I am assuming so he can sic them on you so you stop interfering with his plans,”
the scholar said.

“So how can he get into Magnos dimension and harnass this universal spirit?” asked
Seren.

“There is a dimensional gateway in the mountains, near the shrine of Excalibur.
Excalibur has an enchantment made upon it by the treasure hunter hero who replaced it
within stone upon falling ill. The enchantment causes it to act like a compass for the
energy of the universal spirit. Where it is the strongest, the sword will gleam,” the scholar
said.

“Very good. Thanks for your help sir,” said Seren.


                                              194
                                                                                  1
                                                                                  9
                                                                 [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


“You are welcome. Now, I believe the King of Serenity, Artemis, is impatiently awaiting
your arrival,” said the scholar.

When the keepers arrived in the throne room of King Artemis, he leapt towards them in
joy.

“Prince Seren! Prince Albert! Sir Amon! How have you been! Amon, how are those
Templar Knights of yours?” the King asked.

“Wounded but strong. Our last encounter with Blade left many casualties,” Amon
replied.

“I am sorry to hear so,” said Artemis.

“The wounded and dead are not my concern as much as those who were thrown into the
void outside of time. For they will wander forever as lost souls, lest we find a way to
bring them back,” Amon said.

“Prince Seren and Prince Albert, how are you? I am so glad and happy to see that you
had been reunited. You know after your family’s disappearance, Shirley was devastated.
” asked Artemis. “I, a cousin, was nominated unanimously ruler, but many many had still
been mourning the loss of you two and your father. He was a kind ruler….”

“Then you know Artemis?”

“Yes…many on Serenity do not….but our scholars and magi came to understand after
only a few days into your disappearance.”

“But you are so GRown up…it really is amazing…you were only gone a few years yet it
looks as if over a decade has passed to you…” Artemis said.

“Yes….I know,” said Seren as he peered downwards.

“The scholars messenger had returned to me shortly before you arrived. I am permitting
you to enter the caverns to the east near the waterfall and sky pinnacle. You have full
reign over your mission.”

“Actually, my lord, we were hoping you could join us on this mission. We need another
from the keeper bloodline. Would you be willing?” Seren asked.

“Why certainly! I will have the servants pack my belongings and I will be ready to leave
by morning,” Artemis said.




                                          195
1
9
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

And it was settled. Seren, Amon, Albert, and Artemis, the four of keepers blood, were to

When morning dawned, Seren, Amon, Albert, and Artemis gathered their things, each
individually, and met in the throne room of Gait Castle.

“Seren, Amon, Albert. There is a hidden passageway in the GReat library of Gait Castle.
I wish for us to travel through it. Follow along,” the king said.

A bookshelf slid to the left and revealed a hidden passageway. Inside, were hundreds
upon hundreds of books, some that had not been read for many, many centuries. The
pathway through the hidden library finally ended when they reached a room with two
small pools, each fitted with a fountain. At the end of the hall, a small set of doors with
some sort of arcane seal glowing around and in front of it.

“That seal is a very powerful bind…,” said Amon.

“For a seal like that to be here, something very wicked must lay ahead. Maybe we should
have taken a different path…” said Artemis.

“We need to move ahead. Stand back,” Albert said.

Albert focused his mind and cast the Rite of Unsealing upon the door. The arcane
symbols vanished and Albert walked forward, motioning for the rest of them to follow.
Inside, beyond the unsealed door, there was nothing but a pool of crystal blue water with
a waterfall pouring water into it.

“GReat. Dead end. Let’s find a way out,” Albert said.

Meanwhile the energy of Sandre poured out over the world in wave after wave of
pulsating blue death. Clouds surrounded the tower’s peak, and energy arced all around its
circumference. A bolt of energy arced out from the tower and shot towards the hovering
island, Serenity. The bolt struck the base of Sky Pinnacle, where the waterfall shrine was,
causing a tremor in the island.

Debris started to fall inside the room with Amon and the other keepers. Seren, seeing no
other choice or way out, dove into the pool of water in front of them. The other keepers
followed suit. Pulling aside a mesh drain cover, they followed the underwater tunnel out
into a cavern, where the water poured out of the cavern wall and formed a small pool in
the GRound.

“So….where to now?” Amon asked. The cavern was filled with broken columns, old
rusted armor and weapons, collapsed arches, and many other things you might see near
ancient ruins. Behind them, at what seemed to be the entrance to the cavern, two large
pillars with a cap stone marked an entrance that had been filled in with giant boulders.


                                             196
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     9
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

To their front was a small cave entrance, with pieces of carved stone lodged into the rock
wall forming its perimeter.

As they did so the entire planet shook and shivered again. Sandre powered itself up again,
standing high up in the crater of the old volcano, sending bolt after bolt of energy into the
clouds around it.

“Seren, he is activating the tower’s main weapon….” Amon said.

Explosion after explosion continued to rock Serenity, and in particular, the shrine that
they were in.

“I think he is done playing games…” Seren said. The planet rocked and whirled again.
The four keepers ran into the next cave, through the front entrance, hoping inside would
be more stable and safe than where they had just been.

All around the walls were of polished white pearl. Little purple and red sparks of energy
danced around the room, like embers of a cookout fire or sparks from dragging metal.
In the center of the room, slipped into a stone upon a pearl platform, was the majestic
sword Excalibur. Seren walked towards it and wrapped his hand around it. Everyone held
their breath. For although Terra is like Earth, it is not always. But let me tell you rest
assured, the Excalibur sword on Terra had a meaning like the Earth one as well. For the
one who drew Excalibur from the stone it he cavern on Serenity, would be crowned King
of Serenity. By drawing this sword, Seren would be a prince no longer, and would have a
duty to serve the people of Serenity.

“Go ahead Seren. It is your birthright to watch over the Kingdom,” Artemis said.

Seren drew the sword. And as he sheathed it, he felt its energy, the energy of destiny and
fate come over him. He left the cavern, motioning to the others to follow.

The cavern shook again, and the four swiftly left to enter the main cavern where they had
fallen into, boulders closing in their path as they left. Seren sat down and drew Excalibur
and peered at its beautiful, clean, sharp blade. As he did, a ribbon of red ethereal dust
wound around the sword and then out into the air. More and more dust appeared, and it
began to collect and took a humanoid form. Out of the dust materialized the paradox
being M.

For the first time, M had appeared not out of necessity, not of anger, and not out of
GRave circumstances. His yellow eyes glowed deeply, like those of a cat. He sat down
his sword and walked towards Seren.

“We have made much proGRess, don’t you know it Seren?” M said.




                                            197
1
9
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Yes M…I aGRee,” Seren replied.

“I think it is time we no longer remain so divided…” M said.

“How so? What are you considering?” Seren asked.

“I will no longer appear of my own free will. If you so choose, you may call upon me.
And if I so choose, I will call upon you. You will remain the primary controller of the
body we call Seren. But if you like, you may ask for my assistance at any
time…aGReed?” M asked Seren, straight faced, cold, calm.

“AGReed. Thank you M,” Seren said.

M turned towards the boulders that had blocked the only other way out of the cavern. As
he opened his hand, the red leather glove stretched, and in the time for the squeak of the
glove to travel to Seren’s ear, a fireball had struck the pile of debris vaporizing it, and M
had vanished.

The other three Keepers sat in wonder.




                                             198
                                                                                     1
                                                                                     9
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9



Acolytes

The four keepers made their way downwards, out of the cavern. They encountered a
small river outside with a raft tied to a nearby tree. Taking the raft down the creek they
soon found themselves at the Waterfall Shrine. When they entered the cavern to reach the
shrine, they found a sealed door. One either side of the sealed door, embedded in the rock
face, was a stone eye. As they approached, the stone eyes opened, firing beams of fiery
light at them, making it impossible to reach the door.

“Seren, do you think? Do you want to try him again?” Amon asked.

“Yeah, just for kicks? Cause I could easily take out that eye thing,” Albert said.

Seren opened his hand and said, “I’m not quite sure what to do..umm….I call upon you
M!”

M materialized in front of Seren. “Yes? That was quite quick of you…” M said with a
sinister scowl.

“Umm…the door,” Seren said.

“I aGReed to help you, not baby you….” M said and vanished. A few moments later the
door exploded by some unknown force shattering the two stone eyes.

The four keepers explored the waterfall shrine. In the very center of the shrine was a
cavern, and a pyrimad reaching high up, with water cascading downwards, from level to
level. Seren and company climbed to the top of the pyrimad, and then took the moving
platform up further. The platform brough them into a small room with four pillars. Out of
thin air, Blade, always the one to arrive unannounced to situations where he wasn’t
invited, appeared blocking the doorway into the most sacred room of the waterfall shrine.

“I’m getting sick of you,” Albert said. Walking towards the back of the room, he balled
his fist and walking past Blade, gave him a right hook on his way out. Blade stumbled
backwards, not used to somebody simply punching him in the face.

“Insolent fool!” Blade declared.

Seren held his hand out, spreading the fingers wide, and picture it with the red leather
glove that M had worn. Suddenly he felt his body transforming, taking a different shape,
and in an instant he had the body of M but the mind of Seren. Blade’s eyes GRew big and
frightened, having no knowledge of what had happened between Seren and M earlier he
turned tail and vanished. The four keepers entered the room of the most sacred.



                                            199
2
0
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Situated upon an altar in the middle of the room, surrounded by fountains of holy water,
was the last known shard of the comet. A shard larger than Vice, Lunaris, Solaris, or any
of the others. Even larger than the Guardian Statues upon Mystic Island. And somehow,
it had been purified, as if the dark souls that composed its energy had been saved and
made pure. Seren walked forward and rested his palm on the crystal. The crystal began to
beat, harmoniously, along with Seren’s pulse. Then Excalibur followed, all three of them
beating in rythmn, then glowing to the rythmn. The crystal dematerialized, its energy
channeled completely into Seren. The four went on to the next room.

In this final room, in the very most sacred chambers, there stood three pedestals. The left
and right most pedestals were empty, but in the center was a glowing blue orb.

“Behold, this ruby colored orb holds a seal over two men. One was the GReatest mage
ever to live in our kingdom, the other was the GReatest wizard. Someday we may need
to release them…for only under terms of Armageddon were we ever to awaken them
from their deep slumber,” Artemis said. At that moment one of the castle scholars ran
into the cavern.

“We have discovered a hidden city in the western wastes! I do not know how it remained
hidden, but the head of the castle library says they control some sort of time orb that may
help you in your cause! He was so excited he told me to run as fast as I could to tell you!”

The scholars of Serenity guided the island over the western wastes and slowly lowered
the four keepers into the wastes near where the city had been discovered. It had been seen
from above, but neither man nor woman of Serenity had actually been within its walls.
Seren, Amon, Artemis, and Albert walked through the wastes until a rider, strapped atop
an ostridge like bird, covered in a red cloak, snuck up behind them.

“You have crossed the borders of our kingdom. Leave now or I will be forced to take you
to our leader for decapitation,” the rider said.

“The decapitation sounds nice,” Albert said.

Seren shoved Al, but he said under his breath, “this is how we get in. And we even get a
meeting with their leader, who can argue with that?” Albert said. Seren was annoyed.

The rider approached an indentation in a tall cliff with a boulder on either side of the
mark. He pulled along his prisoners and they slipped through the indentation, meant to be
a guidepost for where the secret entrance hidden by a holoGRam was to be found.

The rider took them down caverns, lit in red and orange light from torches fuming along
the sides of tunnel. Finally, they reached a gate, seemingly embedded into the stone
sealing away another passage.




                                            200
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     0
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

Beyond the gate was the underGRound city of the acolytes. Large GRecian pillars and art
décor thematically that of renaissance earth surrounded them. The level of the city they
had entered on was the topmost, and there were many levels below, as if the city had
been built on some sort of crater and then a ceiling built over the crater. At the very
bottom was the most holy place of the acolyes, and where their leader resided. A man
named Dais.

Within his home, Dais GReeted Seren and the others.

“Welcome travellers. I have seen your long journey through the GReat axis of time.
Where all knowledge can be obtained,” said Dais.

“Yes. We have not much time. We were told to come here. We seek a way to stop Blade
from using the tower Sandre to punch a hole in time and release Nebucchadnezzar. We
were told you had some sort of time orb that could assist us,” Seren said.y

“Yes we do. It resides in the axis. And Blade, hearing of your mission and the time orb as
well, is on his way this very minute to the axis,” Dais said.

“Then we need to stop him,” said Albert.

“Right. Follow me,” said Dais.

Suddenly, an ethereal wind began to pick up around the acolyte’s city, throwing sand and
dust all about. The wind turned GReen and began to wrap around itself in a tornado like
fashion, placing the tail of its funnel in the very center of the city.

Dais said, “This is the vortex We imprisoned it here many years ago so we could
summon it and control it. We can now call upon its power to temporarily halt time in the
world outside, but the freeze only lasts for a few hours, so we must get moving. The
vortex should hold Blade still until we get to the Axis.”

Seren, Albert, Amon, Artemis, and Dais vanished into thin air.

When the five reappeared, they were standing on an island with a GReat citadel, floating
in a sea of strange, rainbow colored beams of energy, and other floating islands, although
the latter were barren unlike the one they had found themselves on. Dais motioned them
to follow into the citadel.

Inside were many arched pathways, leading this way and that, with ladders that lead up to
nowhere and many logical inconGRuencies in all of its architecture. In the far back of he
room they had eneterd was a majestic staircase, leading up to the next floor. The five took
the staircase up. It turns out the staircase, once traversed upward for a bit, took them to a
room pitched in black, with no where to go but up further.


                                            201
2
0
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]


At the very top of the staircase a single, flat door stood. The door was not attached to any
walls, ceiling, or floors. In fact it was not attached to anything, but just floated there,
eerily and ethereal.

“Through the door guys,” said Dais. All five of them entered the doorway.

Through the doorway took them to a tall pillar, wide enough that they could stand upon
it, floating in blackness just as the staircase had done In front of them was a humongous
orb, tall and wide enough to take up a city block.

Dais said, “This is the orb of time. It is the source of the prime moving flow of time, it is
what makes time advance.”

Seren asked, “What do you mean?”

Dais replied, “Well, think about it. The universe is made up of at least four dimensions.
Of those four, time sticks out because it is constantly advancing. For example, you don’t
see your shield GRow larger and larger rhythmically. Time allows for everything in
essence. Without its advancing we would be in a static world,” Dais replied.

Dais said, “Also, it is the source of mine and the acolytes magical power.”

“What sort of powers does it GRant?” asked Seren.

Dais said, “From it you can gain knowledge of anything within time, past, present, or
future. It is a window opening into anywhere, anytime.”

“Can it tell me how to defeat Blade once and for good?”

Dais said, “Well yes and no. It can tell you how you will defeat Blade, if that is meant to
happen and ordained by the fates. Shortly put, ask it.”

Seren looked deeply into the orb hovering in front of him. The orb began to shimmer,
then Seren did as well, and soon they entered perfect rythim and harmony.

I’m looking into the past…My mother was one of the keepers, but not from this world.
She had been chasing after the comet, trying to prevent its crash when she arrived on
Terra.

The orb changed color and Seren’s shimmer changed as well. They began to enter
harmony again.




                                             202
                                                                                        2
                                                                                        0
                                                                       [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Only with the tower Sandre under my control will I win. I will have to harness the power
of the tower to defeat him. And I cannot fight him alone…I must fight him with all of us,
all of us joined in one.

“I’m not quite sure where that last part came from but it sounds like you have your
answer,” Dais said.

“The tower must be taken over to our side. Orb, GRant me your power!” Seren
commanded. His eyes turned a deep blue and then the orb shimmered that same blue back
at him.

I have to win the tower’s possession from the inside out. On each level of the tower is a
magical key, sealed with arcane spells from the elves of long ago, guarded by men who
can take the form of dragons. With all the keys, the tower’s full potential is unlocked, and
ownership will be bestowed onto the carrier of them.

“Only with the power of the old gods….” Amon said.

A whirwind appeared and spun its way towards the five. Out of the whirlwind appeared
Blade, along with Tech Demital. Late, but not ready to give up on owning the powers of
the time orb.

“This orb is to be mine now. Flee or dare fight me Seren,” Blade said.

“The sanctuary I have given your people is over Dais. Should you resist all of your
acolytes shall pay,” Blade said.

“Blade, you know I clearly cannot allow that,” said Dais.

“And neither can I….” a voice said in the midst of the darkness.

Blue smoke pinwheeled about, embers of lost worlds and remnants of burned out stars
swirling in the middle of nothingness. Above the pinwheel a figure emerged and took
shape. The figure that emerged was one of an old man, gnarled and twisted in age like the
cane upon which he leaned.

“I am the master of this orb, the father of time,” said the old man.

“Neither you nor any other deity of this world will stop me from getting what is mine,”
said Blade.

The old man GRew anGRy, the swirling pinwheel turned blood red, and bolts of plasma
sped out of the vortex and into Blade. Blade let out a blood curdling scream and then as
he rose from his knee, wounded, he laughed sadistically with a wry smile.


                                            203
2
0
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]


Blade’s eyes GRew a GRave dark red, the color of caked blood. Around him, Seren, and
the others, the many stars of the universe could be seen. Blade’s will called comets and
asteroids, burning with everlasting fire, towards father time and struck him with their
force. Father time, unhurt, swung his right arm and as it travelled it picked up heat and
gathered energy. His fist struck Blade in the chest, tossing him backwards towards Seren
and the others who had been frozen and awestruck. Finally Blade cast his most powerful
spell, “Vorpal Apocalypse.” Everything around him began to fade away. Seren and the
others could no longer be seen. Only Blade and Father Time were visible, stood opposite
like gods among men. Dragons, made of flames and energy, of the elements, arose from
the heavens, and plummeted, one after the other, fiery destructive energy, into Father
Time. Unable to sustain himself any longer in battle, the old man opened a portal, and
slipped from dimension to dimension, escaping Blade’s onslaught. Blade took Excalibur
from Seren’s hands, who was literally frozen in time.


The Shaman of Chronos


“You do have the power to defeat the GReat evil,” the elder said. “The demon stirs. Take
the armor. It is the fourth and most powerful, the Kappa Armor and contains the power of
the orb. It is meant for the bearer of Excalibur. I know it was stolen from you, but you
were the one who drew the sword, so take the armor. It has all the power of the other
three sacred armors.”

“Thank you. Is it time? I feel it also….” Seren said.

“Yes, the orb of time has declared it so. It is time we take control of Sandre and end its
existence on this planet,” Dais said.

“But we must be careful, Seren. Within the tower is the soul of every life form that has
ever walked upon the face of Terra, their souls bound to the tower to provide it with its
energy. Thus not only friends are bound in the tower, but foes as well,” said Dais.

“I understand. We are worthy of the armor,” Seren said.

“As you go towards the tower from the jungle, the earth, along with its plant life, begins
to rot. The tower itself is surrounded by a ring of swamp land, a deadly place for any
being, even you Seren. I do not know the way from the jungle to the swamp and on to
Sandre, only the Shaman of Chronos can guide you there,” said Dais.

“Where do we find this Shaman Dais?” asked Seren.




                                            204
                                                                                      2
                                                                                      0
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

“It is a long journey. Here is the sea shell of Dhon. According to legend, if it is held close
to the shore of the Howler’s Island, the sea itself will part and reveal another island.
Nestled in the furnace mountains of this hidden island is White Dragon Castle. Continue
through a hidden path in White Dragon Castle and you will enter a path through the
Furnace Mountains deep into another realm, Hades, land of the dead. Of course this is
only legend I repeat, but from what I was told from what was passed down, in Hades rest
the spirits of all who have died and are not bound by the Tower’s dark magic.”

“And the Shaman of Chronos?” asked Seren.

“I am getting to there. While you are in Hades be careful. The dead have passed from this
world, their eyes have been opened. With that illumination comes GReat power. Travel
there and you will find the Shaman of Chronos,” Dais said.

“In Hades?” Seren asked.

“I’ve told you all I can” said Dais.

Seren and the others left Dais behind and traveled to the beach near the elven village of
Dhon. Seren placed the Shell of Dhon into the ocean, and as Dais said, the waves parted
and the ocean rolled itself backwards, revealing an island directly to the south east of
Howler’s island. Seren and the others went by foot, following the path through the
divided ocean, and soon found themselves upon White Dragon Island. At the base of the
mountains, a mighty fortress stood tall, its parapets rising with the mountain peaks.
Seren, Albert, Artemis, and Amon arrived at the gated entrance to White Dragon Castle.
Not knowing what else to do, Seren beat his fist upon the gate.

“Why have you four awakened us, guardians of dead?” the ghastly voice echoed through
the mountains.

“We seek an audience with the Shaman of Chronos,” said Seren.

The portcullis rose. Inside the castle, the ghosts of dragons who could change into men
who called themselves the “Light Dragons” wandered about the castle, speaking back and
forth to each other and Seren and his party.

Seren and friends shortly reached the throne room of the light dragons. Two thrones
stood before them, each with a ghost which got up to GReet them.

“We are the king and queen of the light dragons who have passed,” the ghosts spoke.

“I am the king, the white dragon, ruler of this castle,” the ghost of the king spoke.




                                             205
2
0
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“I am the second son of Bahamos, ancestor of the one you call Bahamut. My father was
one of the first dieties to rule this universe. He and Aegis the king of stone, and Hades,
keeper of death, were the gods of the first age, many millennia ago. Bahamos bore
children, I was one of them. Then I bore children, and so on. With each generation we
became an older race, but also weaker, until new deities stepped forward. My father was
born to guard the living, Hades to guard the dead, and Aegis to guard the lifeless,” the
white dragon spoke.

“It is not the day of judgement yet, why have you awakened me?” asked the white
dragon.

“We need to speak to the Shaman of Chronos,” said Seren.

“I am sorry, but I cannot allow that to happen,” the white dragon said. “Leave or prepare
yourselves for battle. You may not enter the realm of Hades.”

The figure of the ghostly man became solid and GRew to immeasurable heights. From
him was formed a powerful, majestic white dragon.

“Artemis, Albert, Amon, get ready!” Seren cried and drew his sword.

The white dragon leapt and took flight, crashing through the ceiling of the throne room.
Seren and the others ran through the passage between the thrones and found themselves
in the furnace mountains, with the white dragon curling over head, breathing torrent after
torrent of luminous flame.

Seren and the others all battled the white dragon. Seren and Artemis threw spell after
spell at the dragon, while Albert and Amon fought the creature hand to hand. Finally,
they had weakend the creature just enough. Seren leapt up onto its back and placed his
sword along the neck of the dragon.

The white dragon vanished and the ghost took the form of a man again. Confident in the
travellers’ abilities, the dragon king began to speak once more,

“The test is over. You may go on into Hades to speak with the shaman.”

They had traveled along the path through the furnace mountains for a short time, before
the found themselves at a seeming dead end. Suddenly, the mountain side began to
change shape into a tall, broad, face of a man. The stone golem Aegis, who was lord over
all of the lifeless, the stone, the earth, the ocean, had appeared. He tested Seren, Artemis,
and the others in another battle. With his defeat, Aegis spoke and said, “You may
continue on travelers. The entrance to Hades is through the volcano to the north of here,
in the heart of the furnace mountains.




                                            206
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    0
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

The four continued on and entered the volcano in the midst of the furnace mountains.
They journeyed deep into the volcano, through the sweltering heat until they came into an
underGRound cavern, vast and lit red from the cinders and magma of the volcano. Across
from them a river of thick magma, wide and deadly, sat before them. And in a boat at the
shore of the river of lava sat a hooded skeleton, the ferryman.

The ferryman curled his boney fingers, beckoning them. Seren and the others stepped
forward and the ferryman held his hand in a motion to say “stop.” Seren look at the others
and said, “Only I may cross….Do not worry I will return,” said Seren.

The boat carried Seren across the lake of fire, while Artemis, Amon, and Albert returned
to the elven village of Dhon.

A castle came into view from within the distant cavern. The ferry entered through the
gate of the castle and then came to moor inside.

The skeletal ferryman croaked, “The palace of the dead,” and waved Seren to leave the
boat. Seren walked forward, through the ancient building, between pillars and broken
stone, watching the spirits of the dead materialize and then disappear a few seconds later,
like fireflies in the summer.

Seren came to a vast pool of black water. Over top of it, the being known as Hades, lord
of the dead, appeared, with the face of jackal and a body of stone. His massive body
arched forward and he looked down at tiny Seren.

“Stand back Hades. I am here to see the Shaman of Chronos,” Hades spoke.

“Big words for such a little man…” Hades said.

“You may not enter the realm of the dead. It is reserved only for those who have passed.
Of course, there is one way you may enter…” Hades said. “If I take your life you may
enter…” Hades said and laughed maliciouisly.

Hades was a powerful foe, able to command the spirits of the dead, demons of hell, and
horrible monsters. Seren was barely a match for him, and as Hades fell to one knee,
exhausted from Seren’s onslaught, Seren had truly realized that he had become more than
human, more than a keeper, he had become a deity in his own right. And he began to
wonder, should he defeat Blade, will he ever be able to return to the life of a mortal?

With Hades tested and triumphed over he returned back into the black pool of shades.
And out of the pool arose the Shaman of Chronos, awakened by Hades for Seren.

“Seren of Serenity, why have you awoken me from my sleep of aeons?” asked the
Shaman of Chronos.


                                           207
2
0
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“I seek a way through the swamp of the dead that surrounds the tower, so that I may enter
that tower of sin, Sandre, and make it my own,” said Seren.

“Indeed, spending my time here I have learned much from Hades from and about the
dead,” the Shaman said.

“Here Seren, take this vial, you have earned it. It contains an infinite amount of a
magical liquid in a bottomless container. When you spread the liquid on the murky
waters of the swamp of the dead, it will resurrect the life that was once there, resurrecting
the jungle plants and will allow you to pass,” said the Shaman.

“Thank you Shaman. Please return to your sleep, I will depart,” said Seren.

Seren left, and returned across the river styx and back through the parted ocean to the
elven village Drohn. He told Artemis, Albert, and Amon of his success and the four of
them journeyed back to where the Gigas Dwarf had guarded the jungle surrounding
Sandre.

When they reached the dead swamp, Seren used the vial. Resurrected from the dead
swamp was not only the plant life, but an entire village of Shamans. It was the village of
shamans from which the Shaman of Chronos had been born, and now Seren understood
why he had to seek him in the world of the dead. For the Shaman had been their leader
and held authority of their powerful souls, which would never had allowed a stranger to
pass upon and through their desolated village. Now they passed peacefully, talking with
the people of village and bestowing courtesy upon them. Beyond the shaman’s village
was a beautiful, dense forest that had been resurrected by the endless, limitless vial of
life. Seren climbed up the treetops and ahead, in the distance, at the end of the forest, he
saw the majestically evil tower of Sandre stretching into the sky, casting down its evil
bolts of energy and countenance upon all of the world.

The others climbed up to join Seren. In the sky before them flew two giant wyvern, a
mother and her baby. The baby wyvern, covered in GReen scales and appearing as a
cross between a teradactyl and dragon, landed gently upon a tree branch next to Seren
and the others.

“I think it is offering to take us to Sandre!” Seren said.

The wyvern lowered its heads in approval. Seren and the others climbed aboard its back.
“I have never ridden one of these, have you Seren?” asked Amon. Seren laughed and said
a quick “no” as they lurched back with the wyvern’s take off.

Meanwhile Blade stood upon a balcony on Sandre, overlooking the jungle.




                                             208
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     0
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

“So, they are finally coming to take the tower for themselves. We shall see about that…”
he said to Tech Demital who stood by the doorway to the balcony. Both Blade and Tech
returned inide.

As the wyverns flew, four beams of elemental energy, each in their own right, poured out
from where the One Tree stood. The beams of energy came back down from the sky, like
meteors touching the surface, and crushed the barrier shield that protected the entrance of
Sandre, destroying its guard over the tower.

The four, atop their wyvern transportation, landed on the inside of where the energy fence
had surrounded the tower Sandre. Ahead of them, two doors that appeared as if made for
giants stretched into the sky, beckoning them.

The mother wyvern landed next to them, and pushed its claw against the heavy doors of
the tower, pushing them open, then flew away. Seren nodded thanks to them in the
distance and the four entered.

Within, the four found themselves in a vast empty space, pitch black except for a self-
illuminated crystal walkway. Inside it was like being lost in the depths of outer space,
with a few lights twinkling here and there like the light of distant suns. Suddenly, Dais
tapped Seren on the shoulder. He had followed them and come to join in on the final
battle. In front of the five of them, at the very center of the vast empty physical tower, a
portal into the dimensionless altered space that the tower was actually formed of stood. A
portal to the first floor of the evil elven tower of Sandre.


Sandre Floor One – Oakton and the People of The Forest

Within the tower of Sandre, the people of Terra had been divided into their elemental
origins, some fire, some wind, some water, and so on. Each elemental type had its own
floor of the tower, each floor a literal world of its own. From there, the souls of Terra had
been divided into their genomic histories, represented as clans, each clan assigned a
village. The first floor of the tower was of the element of earth, and consisted of the
different clans of the forest people. Seren, Dais, Artemis, Albert, and Amon made they
way into the forests of the first floor, behind them the stairway that had served as their
entrance dematerialized and vanished. They reached the first village of the first people of
the forest. Not much of a traditional village of sorts, it consisted of a small GRove of
peculiar trees, with blue and purple crystals emebedded into their GReen, wiry trunks.

Seren approached the first of these trees and it let out a loud, booming voice, “Oh woe is
we, we, the forest clan, have been bound into these false trees by the evil sorceress under
the dark lords command.” Other of the unusual trees let out a similar moans and
complaints.



                                            209
2
1
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Tree people, we are here to defeat the Emperor Blade and take the world back from
under his thumb,” Amon announced.

“To the north is a fortress controlled by imperial soldiers. They are of the Dark Dragon
Clan. The souls of the dark dragon clan, innately evil, turned themselves over to Blade’s
rule to serve him and the Empire within the tower, keeping it under his control,”
bellowed another tree.

“Our village elder, before he was turned into one of these ghastly trees, GRasped the
sorceress, so that as the spell was cast upon him, she was also bound within the artificial
prison with him,” said another tree being.

The five approached the village elder tree. Seren addressed it first, saying,
“Village Elder, are you bound within this tree?”

“It is as they said. I am the elder of this village, the Town of Teeson. Within this tree,
bound also, is a sorcerer who once was an agent of the Empire. She no longer holds
allegiance, having heard the voices of the people of my village without choice for over a
decade she has changed sides. However, she has no way to break the spell from the inside
of this prison. We ask that you find a way to free us from this spell,” the elder said.

“Are there any of you who are magic users?” the voice of the sorceress let out.

“I know much of magic,” spoke Dais.

“A strong enough spell of the element of fire will destroy the crystalline trees that
imprison us. The second that the seals are broken I will cast a water spell upon the fire to
extinguish it. Let me know when you are ready,” the sorceress said.

Dais indicated he was ready. Flames came bearing down on the crystalline trees of Teesa,
and one by one, the magical prisons were reduced to char and ash. The sorceress casted
her water spell, effectively dousing not only the trees but the inhabitants of Teesa as well.

Seren, among others, was amused to discover that the true form of the inhabitants of
Teesa was not the form of man, but various species of forest animals. Various
chipmunks, squirrels, rabbits, and other such creatures were freed from the crystalline
trees. Finally, the elder, a rabbit who stood upon his hind legs like a human, approached
Seren in thanks. Next to him was a creature with the upper body and face of a woman and
lower body of a serpent. She was the sorceress who had cast the ill-fated spell.

“Head north through the burnt trees at the end of the village. Across a river is a fortress of
dark dragons. Beyond them is another village of treefolk. That village is named Zinc and
is ruled by another breed of tree people. Ask them about the emerald lock and the
emerald key,” the sorceress said.


                                             210
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     1
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1


The five travelers continued on, through the burnt trees at the far back corners of Teesa,
across a the stony river bridge and into the dark dragon fortress’ entrance, surprisingly
lightly guarded and inviting.

The fortress, in an ill form of irony, was named “Zion” and upon entrance to it in the
foolheardy manner that the five too, they soon found themselves under arrest and
detained for questioning. Hoping to still lay low, Seren whispered to ther others and they
aGReed to play along and not resist immediately.

Locked away within the prison of Fort Zion, were not only the five heroes but all
different sorts of treefolk from the two villages of Oakton, Teesa and Zinc.
Seren and the other five decided to use a diversion attack on the soldiers of the fortress,
by breaking free themselves and the tree folk and then ambushing the guards of the
fortress.

What they had heard was true. Each guard took the shape of a hellish dragon, some big,
some small depending on their age and strength. Even considering, the five heroes made
short work of them and with the fortress obliterated, went on to the village ahead, Zinc.

Ahead, they found the village of Zinc. Not populated by humans nor animial like humans
like Teesa, the inhabitants of Zinc were actual trees, with oaky limbs, arms and legs
made of malleable wood. They shook their branches and guided the party to the village
elder.

The village elder was a massive redwood tree, old and wizened. Along the way the trees
whispered into the ears of the travelers.

“The clan of sorceress’ have taken allegiance with the dark dragons and their leader,
Emperor Blade.”

“He who controls the keys controls the tower.”

“Our emerald lock requires the key of emerald from Teesa to turn. When it does, the
power of this floor of the tower will be given to the holder.”

The arrived at the elder tree and he spoke to them in a booming, GRey voice,

“Travelers. I have seen your journey. It has been long and arduous and much for many,
let a lone a few. Heed my words. The elves who built this place were a jealous race, and
guarded the powers well. Even though Blade has resurrected the tower in its full form,. to
control its most powerful weapon he needs to have the keys to each floor. Either be
cooperation and good will with the people of the towers, or by malice and force he may
obtain them. The villagers of Teesa hold the Emerald Key and we hold its lock. We have


                                            211
2
1
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

seen your good will. Return to to Teesa, obtain the key with our well wishes to them, and
return to us to unlock the power of this first floor we call Oakton into your hands…”

The elder tree bowed and then GRew silent and still. The five travelers returned to Teesa,
through the Fortress of Zion once again. More guards had been sent again, but they were
not much stronger than the last that had been dispatched. Shortly after, the five arrived in
Teesa again.

When they arrived, the five of them saw that the villagers had begun to rebuild. Giant
half human half bramble creatures moved from in and out of the surrounding wood,
assisting thing villagers. The elder approached quickly, and seeing the look on Seren’s
face, stopped, reached into a sack tied to his side, and retrieved a shining emrald key.

“This is for you. Seren and friends, take this key back to Zinc, and we wish you well.”

Seren and the others returned to Zinc and arrived before the Emerald Lock. Seren placed
the key in given to him by the elder of Teesa and turned the cylinder. The pillar that the
lock sat upon sank level to the GRound and glowed, casting holoGRams of magical runes
all around. The elder tree roared over the noise of the magical lock,

“Seren and others, enter the portal. It will take you to the next level up in the tower.
Beyond this world-floor lay the world-floor of Flodon, of the element of water. Be
prepared.” The five of them, Seren, Artemis, Amon, Albert, and Dais entered the portal.




                                            212
                                                                                       2
                                                                                       1
                                                                      [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Sandre Floor Two – The Flooded World-Floor


The other side of the portal sat in a small wooded enclave near a village called Zon. Zon
was a village built on a large sandbar in the middle of a fast and furious river named
Zohar.

“So the guards told me the name of this town is Zon,” Seren said to Artemis.

“What are we here for?” Albert mumbled over to Seren.

“We need to explore this floor of the tower, find out where its key is kept, and also find
out where its lock is held. The villagers tell me there is a shrine close by. Also, there is a
mystic staircase that will take us up to the next level of the tower. However, it is heavily
guarded by Dark Dragon Soldiers,” Seren replied.

“It seems like a dead end here,” Amon said.

“What about that bridge on the other side of town?” Seren asked.

“I don’t know. I thought it was a dock for a skiff or something. It just leads down into the
water,” Amon continued.

“I have a hunch…Let’s head over that way,” Seren said.

The five travelers made their way to the bridge and Seren halted them.

“Look up. This archway that covers this bridge has the same emblem on it as something I
have seen before. It was an archaic fountain in the docks near Domon Castle, called
Damus’ mirror. Its magic allowed normal people to breathe underwater. Follow me,”
Seren said. The five passed under the archway, and as they did their bodies became thin
and transparent, and they found themselves easily able to breathe as they slipped beneath
the ocean to where the real civilization was going on in the flooded world.

Beneath the waters around Zon was a beautifuil coral reef, filled with a multitude of
rainbow colored fish and coral. They walked through the coral gently and as they did so
Seren reflected and could still hardly believe that the insides of this world, was a floor of
a tower, let alone the evil tower that had the potential to be a weapon of planetary scale
destruction. They climbed up the edge of a small hill and were suddenly confronted by a
small party of mermaid knights.

“Hail!” Seren said.

“Halt! That’s far enough for a GRoup of land dwellers,” one of the knights barked.


                                             213
2
1
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“We are not here to harm you. We are in search of something….a key,” Amon said.

“Come along. We are taking you into town for questioning,” another knight ordered.
Seren nodded to the others to be cooperative. The five were bound and taken into the
town of Wateon.

Wateon consisted of various colorful huts, made from materials from the reef, all
scattered about in a self-luminous cavern, sitting within a mountain but still below sea
level, with magical gates holding the water back, making it possible to have a dry
environment but if necessary, be submerged. When they arrived, Seren was shocked to
see his old friend Felicia,, the mermaid, pleasantly going about her business in town.

“Felicia! Felicia! Come here!” Seren shouted. The knight slightly bludgeoned him to
shutup but it was too late. Felicia came charging towards Seren and the other four.

“Where have you been Seren?” Felicia asked.

“A long story. I’m assuming the same for you. Do you think you could get these knights
to let go of us?” Seren asked.

Felicia waved to the knights and they let go of the five. Felicia showed them around,
pointing out the flood gate for the days of the week the spent underwater, and the
drainage plates that were used for when they wanted to spend time in the dry.

“So, anyway Felicia. We were looking for the key to unlock this floor of the tower. Do
you have any idea?”

“I’m not sure. But Sinko may be of some help. Unfortunately he was sealed away in a
cavern nearby. Your friend Nickerian has been trying to unseal him for months but just
doesn’t have enough strength to do it alone,” Felicia said.

“Let’s go and see what we can do. He’s in the north cave right?”

“Yeah, sealed within a magical sarcophagus.”

Within the north cave were two terminals, each adjacent to one of the cavern walls.
Between the termianls a magical force field, crackling with energy, stood, as a form of
stasis field holding back thousands and thousands of pounds of water. It was literal wall
of water. Nickerian was there, but too busy to formally GReet Seren and the four. He was
trying to figure out a way to pass through the gateway temporarily without completely
shutting it off. He had not passed through the archway in Zon and if the village were to
be flooded he would have no way of surviving the onslaught of sea water.




                                           214
                                                                                      2
                                                                                      1
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

Artemis suggested using a spell to send Seren over to the other side of the temporarily
The shrine sat high enough that once he was on the other side of the stasis field, he could
swim up into the shrine itself where Sinko was imprisoned, and use the limited amount of
oxygen there while freeing Sinko, and then return to the village.

“Sinko was imprisoned because he was a light elf. Along with the Light Dragons, the
Light Elves are at constant war with the Dark Dragons under Blade’s thumb. They are
trying their best from allowing Blade to use the Tower’s full potential, but they’re
numbers are failing and they won’t be able to last much longer. We have to find the keys
before he does,” said Nickerian.

Artemis cast the teleportation spell and Seren found himself instantly holding his breath
and swimming upwards through the cavern. He emerged in a small room in the shrine,
gasping for air. There, sitting in a small pool of water opposite the one he emerged from,
lay a stone sarcophagus, covered in some sort of substance that looked like the material
from the cocoon of a butterfly. Tearing away at the webs he reached the sarcophagus. He
placed both his hands on it and began the Rite of Unsealing.

Ellipses of red and silver, circles of blue and gold, and lightning of white mixed with
clouds of fumes of GRey and orange swirled around Seren and the sarcaphogus. The
stone lid edged forward an inch, then two inches, then three inches, and then shattered
like a piece of glass into a million pieces. Lying peacefully, smile on his face, eyes still
closed, mind still unconscious was Sinko the light elf.

Seren took hold of the light elf, cast him over his shoulder, and made his way to the other
side of the cavern. Here a small lever had been thrown. Pulling back up on it, another
stasis field appeared, and the water drained out of the passageway to and from the shrine.
The stasis field in front of Nickerian vanished. Seren climbed down into the shrine
entrance, with Sinko on his back. Seren GReated the six: Nickerian, Felicia, Amon,
Artemis, Albert, Dais and by heed of Nickerian, took the road south of Wateon, up into
the cavernous mountains, and out onto the surface where the Light Dragons Wateon
island outpost stood.

“Excuse me, where can I find the commander of this outpost?” Seren asked a nearby light
dragon soldier.

“Ahead, at the deepest part of the cliff valley,” the dragon soldier replied.

Once inside the light dragon commander’s tent, Seren began explaining his situation to
the commander.

“I understand Seren, but currently we are preparing for a large operation,” the
commander told Seren.




                                             215
2
1
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“What may I ask is the operation?” Seren asked.

“We plan to invade and destroy the nearby sorcerer city, Docklen” the commander
replied.

“I think I’m going to be sick…” Felicia butted in and left for he nearest inn.

Meanwhile

Blade was sitting comfortably in his quarters in the head quarters of the dark dragons
when Tech Demital arrived.

“I’m sorry to report milord that the light dragon’s have begun roaming freely throughout
the tower once again,” said Tech.

“Urg…take care of them. You may bring along a small party of dark dragon knights to
command. That should be more than enough,” the emperor said. Tech nodded his head
and left.

“What will be their next move I wonder?” Blade muttered to himself. Tech walks down
the steep staircase that is a part of the peak of the Dark Dragon Castle. Reaching the edge
he transforms into a dragon and leaps into the sky. Speeding through the clouds he arrives
at just the right altitude. Above the clouds, there is not empty space here, but a blue
vaporous field of energy that serves as the roof of this floor of the tower. He reels his
head back and then dives, head first, wings spread into the blue aura. He emerges
unharmed into the next floor and continues this, floor after floor, until he reached the
floor where the citadel of the light dragons sat.

“Prepare yourselves! A dark dragon approaches!” the light dragon soldier yelled to the
other atop the parapets of the glistening Light Dragon Castle.

“He is by himself. I am guessing him to be a messenger?” the other light dragon soldier
said.

The dark dragon set its claws down upon the brick and mortar of the Light Dragon
Castle, and then eased itself into a seated position. In a whirlwind of magic and energy
the dragon took the shape of Tech Demital.

The two soldiers ran towards Tech Demital, swords brandished.

“I would not bother….remember who owns the land you live on and the world in which
you breathe,” Tech said with a dark, murderous tone. He waved his hand across the front
of him like a magician performing a trick. The eyes of the light dragons GRew dark with
a GRey, misty, shadow moving over them.


                                            216
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    1
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7


“GReat. Two more recruits. Let me see how many more of their ranks are as weak as
this…” Tech GRinned and entered the castle.

Docklen

“Come on soldiers! We need every last one of you!” yelled the light dragon commander.
Heading the attack party were Seren and the other five. Docklen was a beautiful city
beneath the ocean that the race of serpent sorcerers had built. Unfortunately, an evil
sorceress by the name of Heily had taken control of most of the sorcerers and sorceresses
here. The light dragon commander lead the light dragon troops along with Seren and the
other five.

“We are heading straight for the palace. Once in, we go directly for the throne room and
Whiley!” the commander barked.

Whiley transformed into a thunder sorceress, and with the environment being filled with
water, her spells arced across puddle to puddle, wrecklessly putting all of them in danger,
including herself. The light dragon commander transformed into a beautiful white
dragon, with diamonds studding a circlet around his neck. He breathed heavy bolts of fire
and ice, and soon Whiley was no more.

With the defeat of their leader, the six and the light dragons took Whiley’s key and freed
the prisoners in the dungeon. Unfortunately, as they freed the prisoners….

“You thought that little bit of magic could destroy a sorceress?” Whiley materialized
before them and plunged a red jewled dagger into the light dragon commander’s side.

Fallen and wounded, the commander said, “My companions, do not worry about me.
Stop Whiley and her plans.”

Whiley had run from the room. When they caught up with her they found her casting
some sort of ritual out in the middle of the ocean bed. The undertow had been GRowing
stronger and now they discovered that it GRew stronger with every wave of her staff and
chant she let loose from her lips.

The ocean began to swirl in a circular motion. Steadily it GRew faster and faster,
GRowing into a magnificent cyclone of water. The cyclone pulled itself up and out of the
bay, bringing all of the water of Floodon with it. Arching its neck and looking down like
a serpent, it peered at the rocky cliff that surrounded and protected the city of Wateon.
The serpent of water reered back and then plunged itself forward, burrowing into
Wateon. The watter poured all around the village, scattering mermaids here and there and
obliterating everything in its path.




                                           217
2
1
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Meanwhile Seren and snuck up behind Whiley. In anger, he raised his sword and spoke
the ancient words that called upon the Rite of Sealing. Light and fire revolved around
Whiley, who was paralyzed by both the effects of the rite and his own spell. A prison of
crystal GRew around and in a matter of seconds engulfed him. He would now pay for his
crimes.

While Seren finished his spell, a light dragon scout approached the commander.

“All, fall back!”

“What happened?” Amon asked.

“The Emperor has attacked the main Light Dragon fortress with his fleet. Even worse
though, his vile second in command Tech Demital has manipulated some of our own
people into joining his side and embracing the power of the dark dragons,” the
commander said. “We must return for fear he attack our outpost as well.”

Meanwhile

“What! You imbociles! How could you let an ENTIRE fleet be destroyed?”

“My master, I do not know what happened. All I know is that a spell emerged from the
ruins of the Light Dragon fortress and suddenly all of our ships were engulfed in fire,”
said the dark dragon soldier.

“Sounds like GReat power indeed. Tech, please show my esteemed dark dragon scout his
way into the back,” Blade said. Tech escorted the dark dragon soldier into another,
adjacent room. The screams could be heard around the castle.

The six were given the key to the floor of Floodon by the commander of the Light
Dragons Outpost and were directed to a cavern to the east of the village. “Within the
cavern is a shrine and the lock for the water key,” he said.

The cavern was flooded and luminous. Three pillars with pedestals sat upon them were
situated on a single platform amidst the swelling cavern waters. The pedestals were
organized in a triangular manner, with two in the front and one centered behind them.
When the six put there feet down upon the space between the three pedestals, they found
themselves teleported into a flooded ornate marble room. Hovering above the waters of
the room was a small faerie. Behind them on the platform they now found themselves
standing upon, was a cylindrical pillar with a lock in it. The faerie said, “Welcome. This
is the shrine of faeries. Please let the pillar behind you be.”

Ignoring the faery’s command, Seren slid the key into the lock, its pillars and tumblers
situating themselves into place. Seren turned the key. “Oh no!” cried the faery. The pool


                                           218
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     1
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

of water in the room began to drain away and the faery transported itself away. When the
water had all but completely drained, a staircase was made visible. “Let’s head down
these stairs and see what else there is to this shrine. There should be set of magical stairs
to the next floor,” Seren said.

The stairs lead downwards into a cave system. At the bottom of the cavern was a set of
triangular pillars like the first they had encountered. Seren first ,and then the others,
stepped into the center and found themselves again in a room like the first that had
drained away. In it was the faerie from before.

“What do you want with us?” Seren asked.

“I am here to guard the entrance to the next floor. Draw your weapon!” the faery cried
and transformed into a human-size version of itself, along with rapier and chainmail.

When the faery had been defeated and flown away, the illusion was destroyed and they
found themselves atop a small mountain in front of the enchanted stairs that lead to the
next floor of Sandre.




                                            219
2
2
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Sandre Floor Three – The Mountain Floor

The enchanted stairs brought them an exit into the Town of Mintin. Mintin was once a
pioneer mountain town, but now all the fresh water that was once supplied into the
village by a mountain stream had been dammed up and another water source routed into
Mintin, causing the entire village to be knee deep in swamp water.

Most of the occupants of Mintin had left long ago. However, the elder and his relatives
still stay in Mintin out of pride and hope that one day their beautiful village will be
restored.

“Aye. If it is the Earth Key you are looking for, you should head north into the source of
the swamp waters, the Mooreland Swamp,” said the elder’s son.

The six traveled into the Mooreland Swamp and its many unmarked GRaves. Banshees
and spirits roamed through the swamp, along with prehistoric animals and other such
unfriendly creatures. In the far north of the swamp, a large tree leaning against the
cliffside had been burned to the GRound, leaving a stump with a gaping hole in its center
and front. Peeking into the darkness, Seren shouted, “Hey, I think this is actually the
entrance to a tunnel. It may lead to the earth key.”

“I guess we should try it. I can’t see any other way out of this horrible bog,” said
Artemis.

They entered the tunnel and soon found themselves standing upon dry soil. The end of
the tunnel took them outside a large mountain range and at the foot of a GReat lake.

“Look at that! In the distance!” Seren said. At the very center of the lake, was a structure
built like the GReek Parthenon.

Artemis lead them on and they swam out to the island in the center. In the structure, at its
center, sitting upon an old stone platform, was the Earth Key. Seren took the key and they
reversed their steps and returned to Mintin.

“Oh, I am so glad that you found the key. Now maybe you can help our plight,” the
village elder said.

“How?” asked Amon.

“Use that key on the dam at the south of the village. It is part of the dark dragon’s plan to
eradicate and control the people of the mountain world. The key will destroy the dam and
bring the bridged fresh water back in to wash out the old swamp water. I bet you didn’t
know that there is more to these keys than just a way to manifest stairs and travel floor to
floor, did you?”


                                            220
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1


Seren turned away, embarrassed that he had never given it thought. The six of them made
their way to the dam and as instructed, Seren held the Earth Key to the dam. Balls of fire
leapt from the tip of the key to the dam and destroyed it, piece by piece. The fresh water
that had been held back roared through and flooded the village, pushing the swamp water
back out of the village, out of the forest north, and into the deserted valley beyond. On
the other side of the reservoir that the Dark Dragon’s had created another swamp had
been created but now was filled with neither swamp water nor fresh water but solid earth
and the stumps of trees that had rotted from the ill water.

“Search the southern forest for it. It will be your way onwards and out of here. You will
know it when you see it,” was all the elder had left them with.

Seren and the others searched and searched until they found a small stream that ran from
the pure water lake into a small pool below a tree stump. Out of the pool of water poked a
round, brushed silver cylinder, wide enough for two people two fit through its entrance.
Seren and the six climbed into the entrance of the cylinder and found themselves inside
some sort of device.

The elder (who had been following them on their way into the southern forest, just in
case they didn’t follow his instructions) yelled from outside jubilantly, “It’s called the
Mach 1. I built it years ago to try and keep water out, before they built that damned dam
and made it inaccessible. If you can shut it off it will stop pumping water and my village
won’t be flooded anymore. Use the earth key,” the elder said.

The machine shut down and the water level in Mintin fell to zero. The elder and his
family began repairs and construction to bring their village back to the way it had been so
many years ago. At the bottom of the machine was the lock for the next floor.

“Go on. Use the earth key on the lock and go up to the next floor. But be careful. You
should always be on your guard and ready for whatever may come…” the elder of Mintin
said.

Seren and emerged from a staircase in the middle of a forest, him and his allies pulling
vines from across the entrance and brushing the dust and leaves out of their hair. They
heard a screech echo off the nearby mountain top and then a whoosh as a massive dark
dragon dove towards them. As the dark dragon sped towards them, a light dragon
appeared out of nowhere and intercepted the dark dragon, casting it to the GRound
underneath its GRip. The dark dragon cast the light dragon off and flew into the sky,
preparing for its second dive attack. The light dragon quickly changed shape back into a
humanoid form and GRabbed Seren by the sleeve.

“Hurry, if you are to succeed you must enter their stronghold, the Town of Siton. It is few
miles south of here. I will hold off this sentry while you make your escape,” the dragon


                                           221
2
2
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

said and then transformed back into its bestial form, leapt up into the sky, talons
brandished, eyes focused on cleaving the heart of the dark dragon who danced around
him the menacing dance of war.




                                         222
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

Sandre Floor Four – The Land of the Nefarious Dark Dragons

Seren and the others had found themselves laying upon desert canyon floor, covered in
dust and debris. The dragon who had saved their lives told them their destination, Siton
Stronghold, was to the south of the canyon.

“I don’t think we have enough men to just barge into this fortress,” said Seren.

“There are no others around to try and recruite. We are stuck with the six of us,” said
Felicia. “And…I can’t stay in this desert forever, so we have to get moving to
somewhere.”

“I’m sorry Felicia, but when we were being brought down by the light dragon, I took the
liberty of scouting our surroundings. It seems there is no way out of this box canyon
except through Siton,” said Nickerian, who had been mostly quiet through the entire
ordeal.

“You know Seren, it has been a while since we’ve seen M. Do you think you could call
upon his powers again? I mean, a guy like him along with us could easily take out the
troops guarding Siton Stronghold.”

Feeling sort of unwanted and dejected Seren said, “Sure. I don’t know how he runs
though…if he needs to store power before appearing,” Seren replied.

Seren closed his eyes. His surroundings GRew dark. And then darker until the
impenetrable darkness was like that of a black hole, so dark that it actually absorbed the
light. In the distance Seren could hear water dripping, rhythmically, one drop at a time.
Then a slight tongue of flame ignited in the distance but it not even it could stop the
impenetrable darkness and light the room.

The blame blew up again. The invisible carriers of the flame brought it along, like a
parade with a single float, to the dripping. Seren saw that the pool was not water but
blood. Bright red blood, the color of M’s armor and hair. The fire touched the pool of
blood and the pool ignited like gasoline, the fire roared through the impenetrable
darkness. Seren felt himself being drawn into the blood-flame. He turned and ran. He ran
as fast as he could, but the tendrils of the blood-flame chased him, approached him side
by side as he ran, to prove to him he could never escape them. He gave up, sat down out
of breath. The tendrils of the blood-flame danced around him, then wrapped themselves
around him, and in a blood curdling scream, pierced their ill-gotten flame into his heart.

“Seren..Seren..are you ok?” asked Nickerian.

“Yes…what happened? I have such a headache I don’t want to even open my eyes…”
Seren said.


                                            223
2
2
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“I am not quite sure. We were talking to you about awakening M to fight the Dark
Dragon soldiers at Siton Stronghold, when you just lost consciousness and dropped to the
floor. We were ready to take you to the infirmary when your body began to change. I
mean physically change, like it was morphing into something or someone else. Part of
you looked like M, another part like your normal self, and then another part like, well,
like nothing we ever have seen…” said Amon.

“We are worried. You split when you accidently created the GRandfather paradox with
yourself and the universe had to create M as a necessary consequent to avoid the paradox.
This has entangled you into the workings of the structure of the universe far too much. If
something happens to a portion of the universe it may begin representing itself in you as
well, and vice versa. This new persona is even more powerful than M and may represent
another fracture in spacetime, this one even GReater,” said Nickerian.

“What should I do?” Seren asked Nickerian.

“Well there is more. The Dark Dragon Stronghold Siton….”

“Yes?” asked Seren.

“Your alter has destroyed a good portion of the stronghold. The dark dragon’s gave up
and literally scared to death of the third alter,” said Albert.

“That’s terrific. Let’s go finish them off,” said Seren.

When the GRoup arrived at Siton, all of it was broken signs, fallen trees, and huts and
buildings turned to ash. When Seren and the others arrived, there was only one soldier
left in the camp.

“What do you want with me? Are you to slaughter me too without warning?” asked the
soldier.

“All is fair in love and war,” Seren said cockily. “We are here for the key,” Seren said.

“Leave me be.”

“We will leave you in peace should you do a favor for us,” Seren said.

The Dark Dragon soldier, after having help from the six to bury his comrades, aGReed to
escort them to the Dark Dragon’s main base, an old tower fortress that they were
excavating. Also, the Dark Dragon soldier showed Seren and friends where the key had
been hidden, sealed away within a glass column in the village.




                                             224
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    2
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

Dais cast a spell and easily shattered the glass column. Taking the bronze key, the party
went onwards, following the woman dark dragon soldier whose name was Arcus.

After trudging through vile swamps and climbing through tunnels etched away from
rock, they found themselves in a place Arcus called “The Garden”. The garden was
guarded by machine like gardeners, some wearing gardening gear, others wearing various
other humanoid clothing. After avoiding the gardeners, who tended to be very sensitive to
outsiders, they found themselves at the entrance to a temple. Arcus said she had brought
them here so they could combine the four keys they had into a four in one multi key
called the “Light Key.”

The robotic security of the shrine refused their entrance. However, Arcus being a native
to this world-floor, lead the others out back to another entrance of the shrine.

“Ok, everyone follow me. Seren, you have your four keys? You should have Emerald,
Water, Earth, and Bronze keys, correct?” asked Arcus.

“Yes,” replied Seren.

Arcus arranged the keys so each key covered each side of the pedestal within the temple.
Then, touching his finger on a sigil in the center of the pedestal and the center of the
keys, Arcus released the spirit of the temple and the four keys were forged into one, the
Light Key.

As they did so, the temple’s power began to GRow unstable. Electrical along with
temporal disturbunces began to escalate through out the temple. Fake swords and shields
that lined the walls appearing in other places, rats finding themselves teleported from
their tunnels into mid-air, and such other nonsense.

Arcus and the six ran towards the teleporter Arcus had found. They stepped inside and
vanished, finding themselves in an identical room with an identical teleporter.

“Oh no…” said Arcus as she peered outside.

“What do you mean oh no Arcus?” said Seren.

“We have been teleported directly into the top of the Dark Dragons center of operations,”
said Arcus. Albert ran over and GRabbed Arcus by her collar and shoved him into the
wall. “What do you mean we are at the Dark Dragons center of operations? You better
tell me you did not do this on purpose or you won’t be leaving here with a face or a tail,”
said Albert.




                                           225
2
2
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Don’t worry. It’s ok. I know this place like the back of my hand. As long as we don’t do
anything to disrupt them or the excavation site right now we will be fine,” Arcus said.

“Do you mean stay away from things like this?” Seren asked as he motioned towards the
switch he had just leaned against.

“Shit! Everyone hide! That’s the excavation explosive controls!” said Arcus.

A small tremor GRew into a rumble and then finally into a quake. The tower rocked and
shook. Around the base of the tower blasts of heavy explosives sent both boulder and
rock as well as Dark Dragon soldier flying into the air, scattering away from the tower.
When all of the excavation explosives had finished firing, the tower was fully visible.

“I wonder why they wanted this tower excavated so badly?” asked Seren.

“Follow me….you’ll find out,” said Arcus.

They made their way to the bottom of the tower, through a secret passageway that only
Arcus and few other dark dragons knew. They reached the very bottom and made their
way through the excavated portion of the tower. Finally at its very base they found
something.

“Its in this chest,” said Arcus. Seren peered downwards at the dusty gold chest. He
opened it and within shone a powerful, neon blue light.

“It’s another key…but what kind of key?” Seren exclaimed.

“It is the Time Key. It will come in handy,” Arcus explained – in a take charge kind of
way.

“Let’s go. We have everything we need from here,” Arcus and Seren said unanimously
and left the dark dragon tower, heading through the bottom most level now that it had
been exposed. As the left through the doorway, a person appeared in front of them,
making both Arcus and Seren uninamiously again jump.




                                            226
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     2
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

Sandre Outer Tunnels

“Do not be frightened. I am Dominus, leader of the Light Dragons. I see you have taken
the Time Key. If you truly wish to save the souls of this tower, take the Time Key to the
top of the tower from which you have just fled. I will explain more when you do,” said
Dominus.

At the top of the tower, Dominus reappeared, “Seren. Activate the time key and then
meet me at the base of the tower, the first floor, at the dark dragon fortress called “Zion”.
There is an underGRound passageway there, when you find it enter it and take it
downwards and out of the tower into the cavern. I will be waiting for you at that exit, on
the cavern side. Make haste!” Dominus said and vanished.

Seren inserted the time key into a ball of aqueuous fluid that floated above a pedestal in
the single top-most room of the tower. When he did, he turned it just like any other lock.
After it clicked into place, the ball of fluid vanished, and the key fell, settling upon the
top of the platform, making a ‘clink’ noise.

Seren picked up the key and the GRoup made their way downwards, floor by floor, until
they reached the very most bottom floor. The key GRew hotter and hotter in Seren’s
pocket the closer they were to their destination. Finally, the six of them stood in a cavern
below Fort Zion, in front of a solid set of steel doors. Seren pulled the time key out of his
pocket, and as he did so, it was torn from his hands by mystical and magnetic force, and
flew into the lock on the steel doors. Seren approached the doors, turned the key, and
placed it back into his pocket.

“The doors are lightweight now and easy to move. Come on Seren, let’s go through,” said
Artemis. Through the doorway they found themselves in a small cavern cut out of the
rock around the lower floors of the tower. In front of them was Dominus.

“Seren and friends, this is the pathway down to the lower floors of Sandre. So far you
have only been in its above floors, but trust me, to take out a weed and parasite like this
tower you have to kill its roots as well,” Dominus motioned towards the metal tower
embedded in the sheet rock. “To your left is a stairway downwards into a cavern. Follow
through this cavern and you will find a special enchanted staircase that typically is only
used by us Light Dragons, however I have GRanted you permission. It will allow you to
travel from here to any of the upper floors. I suggest you use it to reach the top most
floor, our world, the Light Dragon’s world-floor.”

The six made their way through the honeycomb like tunnels around the tower. Arcus had
decided to continue assisting them for the time being and Dominus had vanished.

They soon reached the mists. The mists were part sulfur part water vapor and were one of
the many harmful bi-products of the tower, serving like an automobiles exhaust. The first


                                             227
2
2
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

civilization they encountered in the tunnels was a town filled with dark dragons and dark
dragon soldiers. Easily dispatched, Seren and the others found another heavily guarded
key in the town. This key was known as the mist key. Although most of the soldiers were
either injured, unconscious, or dead, there still were quite a lot more and Blade could
send more at any time. But unbeknowenst to Seren, the noxious fumes of the tower was
starting to get to him and the others.

“Ugh….any body else have a headache?” Seren asked.

“I’m feeling a little woozy. Do you think it could be the fumes?” Artemis asked.

“We need to hurry and get out of here before you people pass out,” Arcus said.

After a few minutes, five of the six lost consciousness and crumpled to the floor.

Meanwhile

“Ultimate Power Awaken!” a the booming voice proclaimed.

In a tunnel cavern near the roots of Sandre, an explosion let loose. Where there once had
been stone a magnificent building appeared. It had been hidden, sealed away in GRanite
and earth for a time nobody knows.

“They are awakening the Master Switch,” a man said, standing upon a precipice in the
world of the light dragons, long blue hair thrown back by the strong winds, one foot
standing upon the precipice’s edge, the other strongly supporting behind. He peered
ahead, posing like a hawk, using his clairvoyance to watch the operations of Blade below.
Next to him, a young squire.

“Should I alert the King, Sir Relm?” the squire asked.

“No, Alex, not yet, there is more in this drama to play out yet…” Relm replied.

“Once the master switch is activated and they sky key claimed, Holy Rivea will be theirs
for the taking. We cannot let that happen,” Relm thought to himself this time and leapt
off of the ledge. As he fell his body GRew light, his arms to feathered wings, and he dove
downwards into the valley below. Faster he flew, faster again, and then he thought to
himself, “this should be fast enough for the transport spell”, and vanished in a blue
cocoon of energy.


“Seren…”

“Ugh….”


                                           228
                                                                                  2
                                                                                  2
                                                                 [FANTASY SAGA M] 9


“Seren.”

“Ugh….”

“Seren!! Wake up!!!”

Arcus looked over Seren, smiling. “You are not cute…” Seren mumbled.

Seren rubbed his eyes and looked around to find himself in a house along with the others
and a mysterious looking man. Seren looked at him, scanning him up and down.

“It is ok. I would be cautious too if I were you Seren. My name is Relm, I am a light
dragon and knight of the highest order,” said Relm. “I found the lot of you unconscious
from the fumes and I gave you an antidote to provide you with immunity from them.
Also, I was hoping you could return the favor…” said Relm.

“How so?” asked Seren.

“To the north, within this cavern, a deadly piece of machinery has been recovered by the
Emperor Blade. We must find out more, follow me. We are will go to the Castle of the
Light Dragons on the top floor via the sacred staircase,” said Relm.

The many of them, Seren, Albert, Amon, Artemis, Knickerian, Felicia, Dais, Arcus, and
Sir Relm traveled through the mouth of a cave and into an enchanted stairway that led
them to the very top of the tower of Sandre, where the Light Dragon’s castle stood.




                                          229
2
3
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Sandre Floor Five – Royal Land of the Light Dragons

The castle of the light dragons glimmered in the colors of its many jewels. Its roads were
paved of gold and its walls like polished diamonds. The many entered the court of the
King of the Light Dragons.

“Welcome back Sir Relm. And I see you have brought the ones you chose aid us in this
mission,” the King spoke.

“Indeed. These are desparate times and desperate measures must be taken. I believe it is
time we launch a full offensive against the dark dragon forces, along with their leader
Blade,” said Sir Relm.

“I aGRee. Will you friends be joining us in this battle?”

“Sire, my name is Seren, and these are my companions, my brother Albert, Sir Amon and
King Artemis of Serenity, my long time friend Nickerian, a man knowledgable of all
sorts of magic named Dais, a leader of the mermaids who calls herself Felicia, and a
former Dark Dragon, Arcus. We have spoken amongst ourselves and we all wish to join
you in the campaign against the Dark Dragons. Also, Arcus may have some inside
knowledge that could help all of us in the war,” Seren said.

“Very well then, all of us shall prepare,” the King said.

Two and a half days later, the war party consisting of the King of the Light Dragons, Sir
Relm, Arcus,Sir Amon, King Artemis, Albert, Nickerian, Dais, and Felicia all prepared
for battle, along with twenty of the Kingdom’s finest knights.

“Now, are we ready men?” the King cried out.

“Yes we are!” the war party cried out.

The King stamped his scepter on the GRound, and from where the base of the scepter
struck the stone a black field of energy started to expand, then a golden light filled the
blackness and out of the black and gold intermingling energies arose a portal.

“Then Charge!” the King cried. First the knights led by the King, then the others led by
Seren charged through the portal. On the other side, they found themselves at the Castle
of the Dark Dragons, behind their defensive lines, at the very entrance to Emperor
Blade’s quarters.

“Good fortune we have had today with the magics!” cried the King. “We stand right
before the entrance way to the abode of our mortal enemy!” The knights raised their



                                             230
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     3
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

swords in a clamor. All of the King’s men, the King, and the adventurers entered Blade’s
quarters.

“Surrender Blade. There is nothing you can do. Your Empire, out of the tower or inside
the tower is no more,” said Seren with his sword’s tip pointing at Blade’s throat.

“You are right Seren. There is no longer anything I can do. What will you do with me?”

“We will feed him to the dogs, won’t we men?” said the King of the Light Dragons.

“No. He is mine to deal with,” said Seren to the light dragons.

“What gives you the right?” asked one of the light dragon knights, the others jeering to
support him.

“He is my father.” Seren waved the soldiers away, and as he did the color of his glove
and forearm plates changed color and shape briefly. Seren, noticing it, whispered to
himself, “Not now…..ok, deep breaths.”

“I think I will take the leader of the dark dragons for myself,” one of the soldiers said and
laughed.

Seren peered over his right shoulder at the mean behind him, and a flash of white armor
appeared on his shoulder where there was none before and then returned ot the
nothingness. This time, one of the light dragon soldiers noticed.

“Milord, what is going on?”

“I’m not sure. Seren, what spell have you cast?” the King of the Light Dragons asked.

“We need to get out. Now Seren, before something bad happens,” said Albert. “The
temporal fracture is GRowing unstable because of your anger. Making you physically
unstable. It is a cycle and its going to go out of control if we don’t stop it.”

“He’s right Seren. Come on,” said Nickerian.

“But what about him?” asked Seren.

“He will have to take care of himself,” said Amon.

All of them left, leaving behind Sir Relm and the King of the Light Dragons to do as their
choosing to the dethroned Emperor Blade.




                                            231
2
3
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Meanwhile, the others had strapped Seren down on to a bed like a mental patient.
Segments of his body kept flashing, changing into pieces of another man’s body, and then
back to Seren’s body. Seren screamed and howled in pain.

“This should be a happy time….we finally defeated his father and there wasn’t even any
blood shed. He just gave up,” Felicia said. Her and Artemis had been outside talking for
the past twenty minutes, while Seren writhed in pain.

Meanwhile, with the drama of Seren and Emperor Blade, Tech Demital had managed to
sneak himself into the tower containing the Ultimate Power, Master Switch, and the Sky
Key. Following Tech Demital into the Tower of the Ultimate Power, without his
knowledge, was both Cindy the Forest Elf and Sinko the Light Elf. When they reached
the top they found Tech Demital absorbing the energy of the Sky Key. Before they could
stop him, he flipped the Master Switch. Cindy and Sinko leapt from the window, fleeing
via air travel as the Ultimate Power Tower was lit up and destroyed in a conflaGRation.
With the Master Switch thrown, an opening had appeared at the bottom of the left tower
of the Tower of the Ultimate Power. With Cindy and Sinko successfully dispatched, Tech
Demital entered the opening unheeded.


Inside of the tower, a magical crystal made of the souls of thousands stood, glowing
effervescently, in tones of aqua, indigo, blue, and in the colors of the sky as well.
Tech placed the Sky Key in front of the crystal, and holding on to it, the crystal
transferred its power through the key into Tech, like a string with a key on a kite on a
rainy day.

As the transfer of power was almost complete, a figure materialized into the room and
pushed Tech to the GRound, interrupting the process.

“I am Emperor and King of this Tower and this world, you will not try to overthrow my
power!” said Blade.

“I…I…” said Tech.

“I think I no longer need your services, Demital,” said Blade.

“Don’t make me anGRy....” said Tech, white hair flying in the wind like flames.

The runes upon Tech’s body began to pulsate in blues and GReen neons. His hands
covered in halos of purples and reds. His eyes were like fire and his ears GRew back to
show his elven lineage.

Blade unsheathed his sword and slammed its thick, heavily weighted edge down to the
GRound. The eye of Blade’s sword opened on the hilt and began to speak to Blade,


                                            232
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    3
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 3


“Any spell, any spell boss. What do you think we should hit him with?” the GReen
lidded, puss filled, red eye of zanbattou said.

Blade motioned his left hand forward in a “stop” hand gesture. Icycles formed around his
fingertips and then, in an instant, a blizzard like storm GRew from around his hand and
projected ice, frost, snow, and winds at Demital.

Demital took the attack in stride. The circuits and tattoos and runes on his body absorbed
the magical power in his cyber-organs, leaving little of Blade’s spell to effect him. But as
Demital recovered, Blade had raised his sword high into air and brought down a crushing
blow onto Demital. Demital’s head swirled. His eyes GRew heavy and he lost
consciousness.




                                            233
2
3
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]



Back Down the Tower (Sandre Floors Four through One)

With the Emperor Blade seemingly incapacitated for the moment, the Dark Dragon’s
were short a leader and therefore short direction. Arcus lead the GRoup through the
fourth floor and the Dark Dragon’s fortresses until finally they reached the third floor
where the town they had saved, Mintin, was located. The King of the Light Dragons and
Sir Relm of the Light Dragons stayed behind, occupied by their duties. The enchanted
staircase in the fourth floor took them to a forest creatively called the Mount Forest. It
seemed, the enchanted staircases didn’t always take the person to the same place over and
over again and were not a reliable mode of transportation.

To the east of the staircase was a small, nameless village. There, the elder was in much
strife about the volcano to the south.

“It has been behaving strangely. Oddly timed earthquakes and tremors. I do not believe
this is nature, but that its cause is magical at the root. Please, if you can help, do so. There
is an entrance into the volcanic mountain on the south side. I will reward you GReatly
should you save our village from the oncoming eruption!” the elder begged.

As they began to leave the village for the volcano, a figure stepped out of the shadows at
the blacksmiths shop, that was to the left of them. Covered in black garb and with a
clothe mask tied tight to his head, he came foreward and spoke,

“I am Sinto. I wish to join you on your quest. I could provide GReat assistance while in
the volcano. I trained well in both the dark arts and the light,” said Sinto.

“Well it couldn’t help. Come along,” said Seren.

Later on, after entering the volcano.

“Phew. It is hot. I do not know how humans or for that matter any form of life can live
within these places,” said Felicia.

“Typically it isn’t humans who live here but masters of the arcan who live in these
places….” said Dais.

“Also specially powered beings like the Techno Knights,” said Nickerian.

They had taken the pathways up the side of the volcano and now were making their way
down the treacherous interior.

“Now how will we cross?” said Felicia concerning the large river of magma that flowed
down in front of them, barring their way.


                                              234
                                                                                      2
                                                                                      3
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


“It doesn’t look like it is passable by any means,” said Artemis.

“Wait a second. Quiet. I think I heard something,” said Seren.

First a horn, then another, then a face and a tail emerged from the river of molten rock.
It was the head of a dragon and its tail emerging in the rear. After blowing a few puffs of
smoke from its nostrils, it opened its mouth and began to speak,

“I am Kealuth, the Magma Dragon. Why have you entered my home?” Kealuth asked.

“We must stop the source of this eruption. If it occurs, the villagers west of here will lose
their lives!” Seren exclaimed.

“Ahhh I see. I have been drawing on the lava too much lately, I could see how one could
fear and eruption. I will calm the fissures. Also, I will give you a vial of this chemical. It
is magma-be-gone. Drop it on any pool of lava and it will dry up like the desert,” the
large dragon set the vial down on the GRound. “As for me, I must rest. I warn you, the
path you came is no longer safe. Travel across this magma river using the bridge I will
make you, and go down the eastern side of the mountain. There is a small, hidden village
there, but I’m sure your friend can tell you more about it than I. Good night,” the magma
dragon said and his head and tail slipped back beneath the fiery waves.

“What did he mean/? Sinto what are you supposed to tell us about the village?” Seren
asked.

“It is simply a ninja village. My home. So let us go and have some rest before we begin
travelling again,” Sinto said.

In the hidden ninja village, Sinto GReeted his friends and the elders of the village. There
they were told of a nearby enchanted stairway that would take them back down to the
third floor. They warned to be cautious however. The Town of Zon had been ransacked
and destroyed by the Dark Dragons. It was just as bad as they heard when they arrived.
There were no men or women in sight, just unfilled shallow GRaves, smoldering
buildings, char and ember. Indeed, the world that composed the third floor of Sandre had
become a dark world indeed. A tunnel within one of the half-standing buildings in Zon
took them through a cavern system and then out onto the beach near the plateau where
the Light Dragon Fortress had been. The base mirrored Zon. Men held up through the
chest by spears, some disembodied skulls of knights driven through pikes around the
fortress, to send fear into the hearts of those who dare disobey the empire. They found a
stray sorceress wandering through the town.

“They were slaughtered without warning…” said the Sorceress. Then snapped, “Why are
you here?”


                                             235
2
3
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]


“We need are making our way to the bottom floor of the tower. However, the enchanted
staircases that lead from floor to floor seem to move around, leaving us in a puzzle for
each floor we reach,” said Amon.

“I know the stairway for here. It lies underwater and will take you into a lake on the first
floor,” said the sorceres. “I suggest you follow, their still could be dark dragon soldiers
around.”

The sorceress cast a spell of breath on them so they needn’t breath while underwater. The
party followed them, the eight of them counting Seren and not counting the sorceress.
They had GRown to a gang in numbers, all the better for their confrontations with the
Empire, who seemed to always GRow stronger and never fall behind. The sorceress took
them to an underwater plateau, which they dutifully climbed. After a while they found the
water getting shallower and shallower until they realized the were in lake water. Seren
swam upwards and dove back down to the others, waving them to follow.

They somehow paradoxically reached a lower floor of the tower by swimming upwards.
But normalcy and logic often seemed to fail within these miniature worlds that lie on
each floor of the sore upon the face of their home world.

All eight of them swam to shore, the sorceress made her way back to the ruins. Ahead of
them was a cluster of trees, and then beyond that a small village. The village was the
forest sage’s village: Mikin.

“Welcome to the hidden village of the sages,” an old, GRey man in a flowing white
hooded robe GReeted Seren and the others. In his right hand was a gnarled old wooden
stave, with an oversized gem embedded in its top.

The village of the sages was built in front of one of the most important structures in the
entire tower. A sacred shrine known as Rivea. As Seren and the others approached the
elder of the village of Mikin, Tech Demital had started a nefarious plot all of his own.

Tech sat in Blade’s throne in what Blade had determined to be the castle of his Sandre
Empire. Tech traditionally had dressed in clothes as dark as possible, an affinity probably
partially the product of his night elf heredity. With long dark hair, dark eyes, and dark
clothes he was like a shadow. The man who had just approached Tech however, no
matter his moral compass or alignment, was a polar opposite. Dressed in white robes,
white hair, and yellow gleaming eyes like gold, one would easily mistake him for some
sort of white wizard. He was not.

The man with the gleaming eyes approached Tech and knelt down on one knee.

“You may arise. Are you the one called Palice?” Tech asked.


                                            236
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     3
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7


“Indeed I am. Former High Paladin of the Holy Republic of Damon, I am here to serve
you, Lord Demital,” said Palice.

“Are you worthy of serving me…Damonian,” Demital said with a scoff on the Palice’s
origins.

Palice placed his hand on his right hip where rested the hilt of an enchanted glyph sword,
one of the most powerful weapons in all the world, let alone in this imprisoning tower.
Palice, as a Damonian, had had no choice just as the others on whether to remain in
defiance of the Emperor or to submit. He had not the ability to leave the tower on his
own, leaving death as the only true other option. Death or disGRace. He chose disGRace.

The diamond glyph was back in its sheath before one could even have seen it leave. It
had torn a paper-thin slit in spacetime in front of htem, which Palice was now
manipulating with the a magical ring fitted around his finger. The slit opened and closed,
twisted, twanged, and straightened like a piece of string, and finally wrapped around
Demital’s feet like rope, tieing itself in knots and then with a tap of Palice’s ring, began
to emit the deadly negative energy of the noxious void.

“That’s enough. I’m sure you have many more tricks like that up your sleeve, considering
you were one of the high guard of Damon. Good enough. Ask the guards outside to escort
you to your quarters and make yourself feel at home,” Demital said with a wry GRin.

Rivea was beautiful to say the least. Level after level of fountain, built so high it soared
over the treetops and kissed the sun. With Flawless holy water flowing from the
mysterious gargoyle statues at its very top. Certainly out of place hidden in the middle of
a forest. The guardian of Rivea revealed that there was more to it then ascetics.

“Rivea was one of the first parts of the tower to be constructed. To be fully active it
requires a special key, made just for it. The key is called the Wind Key, not to be
confused with the Sky Key. The Wind Key, when placed in the lock at the base of the
tower, will activate it fully, although to be honest we aren’t quite sure what that means,”
the guardian of Rivea said.

“So, you have no idea what this place or thing I guess I should say is for? And somehow
unlocking it will make it more powerful?” Felicia asked.

“Yes. The only clue we have towards its purpose is that it was one of the first structures
built and it was magically transported here using the power of that elusive key I told you
of, the Wind Key,” the guardian said.




                                            237
2
3
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Interesting....since Blade doesn’t’ know about this, we should try to find this key before
he becomes interested and goes after it himself. Both us and him are only learning
GRadually what power this place holds…” Seren said.

“If you are interested, there is a place to the south of here on a road called the Inton Path.
It was believed for many years that the Wind Key lies there, within a deadly labyrinth
called Inton’s Test. But we are not sure….” said the guardian.

Within the courtyard of Inton’s test, Nickerian saw two figures, his sister and brother, but
went on with the rest, saying nothing. They had perished when he was much younger, the
tower’s hold on their souls and its flaunting of its power made him sick. They continued
onwards, travelling through the tunnels of the stone keep called “Inton’s Test”. Etched
away out of the mountains, it wasn’t long until the stone around them wasn’t formed or
cut but shaped by nature herself. Nickerian saw many more ghosts of the people of his
race. At first he had taken it personally, but he was beginning to think that somehow his
people were connected to Inton’s Test. Maybe they had been the one’s to design it or
build it.

“Is anyone keeping track of our path?” Seren asked. “Navigating caverns was never my
forte.”

“I have a pretty good idea of where we are about,” said Nickerian.

“Ok, well the cavern floor has turned from stone to packed dirt, so have we reached the
other side of the mountain rage?” asked Seren.

“Possible. Keep bearing left through here. Right will take us back the way we came,”
answered Nickerian, instinctively.

They soon reached stone floor again. “Have we made a wrong turn? The mud has gone to
stone again and it feels much cooler here,” asked Seren.

“No, I believe this is something else. The stone floor looks as if it was measured and cut.
Same with the walls. And there is no moisture condensing. If I didn’t know better I would
say we are going upwards,” replied Nickerian. The rest of the party had remained for the
most part silent.

“Is that a ladder up ahead?” A beam of light was shining down in the tunnel ahead of
them where a tall metal ladder was placed. Seren went first up the ladder and yelled down
to the rest of the GRoup, “It’s a tower. We are in some sort of GRanite tower. There is a
balcony up here.”

On the level above, there was a set of doors that led to a balcony. In addition to that, the
traditional stone floor had been replaced with steel supports and steel floor panels. The


                                             238
                                                                                      2
                                                                                      3
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

GRoup continued, heading upwards into the tower. Finally at its very top was another
exit like the balcony, a set of heavy metal doors which when opened this time lead to the
roof of the tower.

The eight of them took the doorway out of the tower and found themselves outside of
Sandre, on a balcony, similar to when they had exited the tower underGRound. However,
now they could see the clouds far below them and across the GReat expanses of continent
they saw the many wastelands formed by parasitic powers of Sandre. In front of them, on
the balcony, was a small circular mesh platform with an enscription, “So you may
remember us.”

“Nickerian, what do you think that is?” Seren asked Nick.

“It looks like either a switch or a teleporter. I’m not sure,” said Nickerian.

“I’ll try it,” said Sinto.

Sinto placed his foot on the switch and suddenly the world around the eight reeled. Vague
streaks of color circled around them in the fashion of a hurricane or tornado. Below them
was an amazing city, built like the city of Mrobid they had seen before but much larger,
covering vast hills, plains, and even mountains. The world around them continued to spin
and spin and then instantly stopped.

Around the eight were the ruins of that city they had seen below. The fires that had
destroyed it were too long dead to even smolder. It reeked more of death than any town
or fortress set to ruin by the Dark Dragons. No, a more heinous force had stolen the life
from this land. Seren and the others walked through the nameless city, still looking for
the Wind Key

A dry riverbed led to a pile of boulders and an old mineshaft. At the bottom of the
mineshaft another mesh like teleporter. They eight stepped upon the mesh
switch/teleporter one by one, and one by one they now found themselves in the sky, light
enough to walk on clouds. And in the clouds were more mesh teleporter switches,
sending them from cloud to cloud and then back into the caverns, where more teleporters
lay ahead. When they stepped upon the last teleporter they found themselves in a lightless
space. A female voice whispered into all of their ears, “You are not yet ready for the
Wind Key,” and they suddenly found themselves standing in front of the unstable Mount
Forest Volcano that appeared to have had a major eruption and was almost falling to
pieces.




                                             239
2
4
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Volcano Fragments and the Dark Dragon Cyber Tower

The volcanic eruption had left little of its former self to be seen. The majestic mountain,
scarred, holes punctured from volcanic missles and tears made of dried molten stone. The
outlaying towns were in perfect, molten, ruin. A voice yelled up high from the valley
below.

“Seren and friends!”

“Hail! Who is down there?”

“I am the elder of the village. A few and myself survived the volcanic blast. Thanks to
you it was delayed long enough for those willing to leave to flee!” the elder yelled up to
the party. The party climbed down and was GReeted by the elder.

“Listen my friends, I know you are in search of the wind key to unlock the power of
rivea. Very few know of Rivea’s existence, even fewer it’s immense power. Your next
stop on your journey is a fortress of the Dark Dragon’s, they call it the “Cyber Tower”.

A woman walked in, dressed in the gear of ninja, black mask, full black tights, katana
strapped to her back and bags full of unknown alchemical mixtures strapped to her belt.

“Hello. I am Swentee, sister of Sinto,” the woman said.

“GReetings,” Seren said and bowed.

“I am to take you to Cyber Tower for you to destroy it, hop on my back,” Swentee said.
He arms began to GRow apart at the shoulder blade, her neck lengthened, her eyes
deepened and her nose turned to a long, square snout. From her back her spine extended
and GRew, slippery and ravishing about, her skin turned to scales and before them
Swentee had transformed into a mighty white dragon. Her scales shone like diamond. She
turned to Seren and said, “Get on!”

The party piled atop Swentee, who leapt into the sky, nostrils flared with flame, water
vapor from the clouds dripping off her gleaming diamond white scales. Seren was in the
front listening to Swentee navigate.

“Below here you see the valley where the volcano you were at lay. There are many more
volcanoes on this floor of Sandre. The one we are interested in however, is peculiar. Not
just in the fact that it harbors Dark Dragon Soldiers, but in that on one side of the volcano
is solid craggy rock, but on the other side is the Cyber Tower. It is built alongside and
around that half of the volcano, and at its top is a city-fortress for Dark Dragon Troops. It
is one of their strongest bases. If you take this one out, it will be a GReat day for both of
our causes and our people,” said Swentee.


                                            240
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     4
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

The dragon landed elegently on the cyber tower half side of the volcano, in a place called
the valley of earth-sacrifice. As elegant as her landing, she took back to the air and
speaking into their minds this time, said “Good luck my friends.”

The base of the cyber tower was before them. The semi-cylinder making up the tower had
three distinct entrances. Each entrance was protected by two elite dark dragon knights, in
addition to the cyber tower’s main security system. The semi-cylinder was the color of
auburn brushed brass, it was not continuously round but sort of in the shape of an
octagon, an octagonal cylinder of sorts. On each panel of the octagon were rounded port
hole windows, extending as far up as the eyes could see. Also, between the port holes
were triangle emblems, enGRaved into the metal and glowing with magical power,
appearing ot be some sort of sigil of sorts.

Seren and his friends, Amon, Artemis, Albert, Sinto, Arcus, Nickerian, Dais, and Felicia,
the nine of them, the small army of htem, began their attack. Arcus and Seren made quick
work of the Dark Dragon Knights, Arcus battling them in his own full dragon form,
Seren using the powers of the Techno Knights he had learned. Albert, Sinto and Artemis
defended against and attacked the Tower itself and its security measures, while Nickerian
tried to patch into the computer controlling the tower.

With enemy soldiers dead, security combat systems smashed to smithereens, and full
administrator access to the tower, the eight happily strode through the entrance and into
the cyber-tower.

Nickerian was stumped. He could not divine any sort of purpose for the tower other then
to drain the energy of the volcano for some sort of weapon. But where was the weapon?
In fact, the power pulled out of the earth by the tower simply seemed to vanish!

When the eight had reached the peak of the volcano, they found the Dark Dragon Fortress
built here stood atop the Cyber Tower, parallel to the mouth of the volcano.

“Just a stone’s throw away from the massive, unstable furnace. How bizarre…could they
be studying it? There must be something we aren’t seeing,” Nickerian thought to himself.

The eight had caught most of the soldiers in the fortress by surprise, and sufficiently
cleaned out both the cyber tower and the fortress in one sweep.

“Look over here!” cried Nickerian to the others.

“What have you found Nick?” asked Seren.

“At the edge of the mouth of the volcano, there is an elevator system. And…it looks like
some sort of mining operation was going on on the interior,” said Nickerian.




                                            241
2
4
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“We should investigate…” said Nickerian.

The party took the elevators and catwalks down the interior side of the volcano opposite
the cyber tower. Eventually they came to a dead end, a pool of magma with some
extraction equipment and mine tracks leading out of the cavern and into the base of the
cyber tower.

“What could this be?” asked Nickerian.

“I believe this may be one of the auburn sites,” said Arcus.

“Auburn sites?” asked Seren

Before Arcus could ask, a figure swung across the room by a blue, glowing, rope like
string and crashed into Arcus. The rope dematerialized and the man they saw before them
was the one known as Palice. Palice placed his left hand on his right and adjusted his
ring, doing so evaporating the rope he had created out of shearing the space time
continuum and mending it back together again.

“Who are you?” Seren barked.

“Relax Seren...tell your companions to relax also…” Palice said smoothly. He seemed to
be in a deep calm, and made both Seren and Amon very uneasy.

“What are you doing here and who are you?” Arcus demanded.

Palice’s mood shifted from one end of theA spectrum to the other, exhuming insanity. “I
AM HERE TO KILL YOU,” he screamed, then began to chuckle under his breath. “I’m
sorry if I alarmed oyu. I really should have introduced myself. My name is Palice, I was
sent by Tech Demital, counselor under Lord Blade,” said Palice.

Amon held Seren’s shoulder, keeping him back and whispered in his ear, “Be careful.
This one’s tougher than he looks. Also there is something I don’t like about him. I mean
Blade I don’t like. This guy is different. He isn’t just power hunGRy or a murderer, he is
sick, perverted, evil.”

Nickerian, was busy ignoring everyone else and everything that was happening at the
present time and was examining the magma pool. “It looks like they were mining some
sort of special metal out of here. It seems to be all dried up though, I guess we will never
know…”

Albert was becoming annoyed by this Palice nutcase and never being one for having
much self-control or restraint, his temper was at the boiling point.




                                            242
                                                                                   2
                                                                                   4
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

“I don’t know what this character is made of…what he can do. But I am pretty sure of
one way to get rid of him. Hey, maybe I’ll lose the other losers who have been tagging
along with us as well. Who cares. Its hot, I’m out of here,” Al muttered to himself,
frazzled and annoyed. He held his right arm out, around it spiraled ribbons of crimson
red, nightshade purple, and electric yellow. The ribbons turned to flames, he maneuvered
his arm to the wall behind him, hand spread open towards it, and thrust after thrust of
energy pounded into the cavern’s weak walls. He blasted a hole out of the cave and
looked backwards at the rest of the crew saying, “I’m out of here. You can come with me
or stay behind, sweat, and watch the fruit cake bake. See ya,” Albert said and leapt from
the newly blasted exit. Seren and the others looked to see what Palice had done, but he
had vanished as well.

At the bottom of the adjacent cavern, where Albert’s exit had lead them, was a GRove of
light dragon crystal GRaves.

“These are all Light Dragon Soldier’s who have been sealed away. Seren, you should use
your Rite of Unsealing,” Amon said.

“Rite of Unsealing!” Seren shouted with his arms projected forward. A blue cloud of
plasma swirled around Seren’s arms and then propelled itself forward, shattering the
crystals, one by one. When the crystal glitter and glimmer and fog cleared, a garrison of
Light Dragon Soldiers stood ready and at attention. “Soldiers! Arcus can give you
directions to the nearest Light Dragon base.”

The soldiers continued their thanks and left for the nearest camp. Seren and the others
followed. In the back of the camp stood an alter, with two adjacent totem-pole like stone
carvings. Seren placed his hand down on the alter, fingers spread wide and vanished. The
others did the same.

When they reappeared they were on the peak of one of the many mountains upon the
floor-world of the tower, this peak however no sane man would ever climb. There was no
way down the mountain but, in front of them, plain as day and unexposed, was an
enchanted staircase.




                                           243
2
4
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]



Sandre Floor Minus One – Deserton

When Seren, Amon, Artemis, Arcus, Nickerian, Dais, Sinto, and Felicia emerged from
the enchanted staircase, they found themselves among sand dunes, in the dusty sands of
the Basement Floor Deserton. Technically they were in the Northern Sands, and south of
them lay the Town of Despot also known as the Necropolis, home of the Dead.

Around Seren and the others moved the living dead, carrying out duties like the living,
but with no consequence for injury in their mind. Also, not caring too much about the
living, a wraith near the town square recommended the travellers head out of the south
gate, through that way they would intersect a caravan. Being a necropolis, the citizens of
Despot had little to assist in terms of water, food, or potions but did have very strong
weapons, armor, and other supplies of the sort to help the eight. Within the town Seren
encountered a Sand Dragon Soldier.

“Yes, indeed. We are neutral in battle of the Light Dragons versus the Dark Dragons. But
for a fee I can fly you to where the caravan is so you may pick up some canteens and
have a good meal,” the dragon said.

After payment, the dragon lifted its heavy, massive wings, and invited the eight others
besides Seren aboard. Arcus, being a dragon himself, decided to fly behind the sand
dragon instead of riding him. Arcus was young, and being young he was simply too small
for the others to ride on top of him, and too inexperienced meaning that he would likely
lose a passenger or two during the trip.

“Thank you for the ride! That was amazing!” said Felicia. The sand dragon had landed
right at the caravan’s spot, out in the middle of who knows where in the southern sands.

Seren met with the leader of the caravan, who was a short, round man with black hair and
a blue crushed hat.

“Yes. We were on our way to town in the south west cliffs called New Sintee, it is dug
out of an built right into the cliffs! Amazing! Am I right?” asked the caravan master.

“What do you think guys? Do you think we should hitch a ride with them?” asked Seren
to the others. “Yeah why not,” said Amon. The others concurred.

The eight reached New Sintee. Here they met with village elder.

“Listen young ones. The volcano in the forest you spoke of, where the dark dragon’s
mined the magma? In there must be a piece of the OBELISK,” said the elder.

“Obelisk?” asked Seren.


                                           244
                                                                                       2
                                                                                       4
                                                                      [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


“I knew there was something unusual about that magma. It contains some sort of metal,
am I correct?” said Nickerian.

“Yes you are correct young one. It is a naturally occurring metal but very rare. The Dark
Dragon’s have been mining it and transfixing magical power into them to make them
even stronger at places they call auburn sites,” the elder said.

“So that is what they are doing there…” remarked Arcus.

“The Cyber Tower was a massive auburn site, with which they hoped to create the
strongest ever OBELISK,” said the elder.

“So, we stopped them, right?” Felicia asked.

“Wrong! In the room behind this, there is a device called an Elf Stone. Speak to it and it
can take you anywhere you need to be. Use it to travel back to the volcano into the
OBELISK PIT. When you get the OBELISK, use it to destroy he Cyber Tower,” said the
elder.

The nine followed the elders advice and in the room they found the elf stone. Rotating
and hovering above a small, blue, runic pedestal, the elf stone was like ball of
intertwining roots, earth, and diamond.

“Take us to the OBELISK PIT!” Seren shouted to the stone. In less than a blink of an eye
they simply were in the obelisk pit. No light, no sparks, no energy. Completely
instantaneous.

It was good they got there when they did. In front of them stood Palice, who had before
him obelisk ore he was taking to the cyber tower terminal a.k.a auburn site that was built
in the obelisk pit. He was preparing to refine it when Artemis fired an arrow of warning
at him, whizzing past his ear, close enough to scratch and draw a drop of blood.

Palice turned and in his right hand was the unrefined obelisk ore, but in his left was
another substance. Not quite crystal, not quite stone, not quite solid, not quite liquid, its
blackness squirmed and shifted in his left hand. Palice smiled, “Haven’t you ever seen
this stuff before? It is the refined obelisk ore through an auburn site. Watch!” he said,
GRinning like a madman.

The ore stretched itself out and covered Palice in it, it took shape, like living armor,
forming a breastplate, a tunic, leggings, boots, chainmail, and all the sorts of armor he
needed.




                                             245
2
4
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The seven were in shock. Seren looked on and saw himself. He saw what he had looked
like with the parasitic symbiotic armor that Blade had once had him don. Here stood
Palice, with his powerful ring that can mend and shape space time, his diamond blade
that can sever it, and now a symbiotic armor.

Seren said softly to himself, “Blade has recovered the technology he must have lost with
the construction of the tower. He has the Dark Dragons mining comet pieces, the so-
called OBELISK ORE. And the auburn sites are turning it into a usable product, like he
did in Domon in the factories. This man is like me. He is like I was. How can I hope to
defeat this adopted son of a surrogate father, my father.”

Seren looked to his side. Hanging, hidden in a sheath wrapped over and over again in
nightshade cloth so that its carvings and enGRavings were hidden to all, was his sword,
the one sword to which he had prayed and promised never to wield again…For far too
hideous was its past deads, and far too hideious its methods of accomplishing those
deads. But now….

Seren drew Vyral from the sheath in his side. The barbs, spikes, and forks raving and
writhing from the Blade gnashed against the air. Seren pulled Vyral to his side and then
let loose one swing, a horizontal slash into the air in front of him. Palice stepped back and
the OBELISK ARMOR that Palice had donned pulled itself back to wrap itself around
Palice again, ceasing its malevolent inching towards the eight.

Seren swung again. Vyral’s barbs reached out like teeth to bite the parasite. This time, the
OBELISK ARMOR leapt back so far it drug a confused Palice backwards with it. Palice
turned and obelisk ore still in hand, ran to the teleporter and vanished from the cave.

“This is not good. We cannot let- ,” Amon was interrupted.

“I can’t…I can’t. Every where I turn, every time I try, every chance we take, another
power another fight arises. Will we ever being able to crush this empire?” asked Seren in
despair.

Felicia put her arm around Seren and said, “Come on, let’s go.”

When they left the cavern they found themselves on an outcropping. Sinto’s sister had
rushed to meet him there.

“Who is this Palice person anyhow?” asked Sinto of his sister.

“There are four enchanted beings who were imprisoned within the tower. Not imprisoned
like we are but literally imprisoned: not able to walk, talk, etc.. Frozen!”

“And they are?” Sinto asked.


                                            246
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    4
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7


“The one you saw. His name is Palice. There are three others. A woman named Lea, a
man named Torw, and some mysterious being only known as C. Unfortunately for you
guys, Tech Demital, Blade’s right hand go to guy, has freed Palice and Torw. The other
two we are not sure about.”

“Hey Seren, I found this when you were fighting Palice, Think it means anything?” said
Dais.

“Not sure…Sinto? What do you think?”

“Oh hey! Bring that with you! That is an obelisk fragment that is in the form of a key. It
was used to seal away a powerful item of our leader. Follow me.” Sinto’s sister said.
The GRoup of them traveled back, following Sinto’s sister, to the ninja village.

“Thank you so much!” the ninja elder said. “With this key I can take back the dragon
relic that allows me to change form from dragon to human and vice versa.”

The ninja elder placed the relic around his neck and morphed into a massive, powerful,
fire breathing dragon, and then shrank back down to the figure of a little old man once
again. The others were speechless and ghost-eyed. The ninja elder fell over laughing
hysterically.




                                            247
2
4
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Four Foulest

Blade stomped around his war room anGRily. “I am anGRy at you Tech. You are not
succeeding. Everything you do is a failure!”

“But milord, there is GReat power in these warriors. Trust me,” Demital said.

“GReat power indeed. I have yet to see it,” Blade said.

“Milord. One of them can meld time with a touch of his ring! And do not worry. These
beings, the four unholy, gain power every moment they are awake. Every night that falls
rejuvenates and strengthens them. We have not even unleashed the power of Lea nor C
yet, and Tor is ready to fight at any minute. And should they not be able to neutralize the
heroes and the Light Dragon threat, we can summon the two most despicable of the
thousand year war…Casel Breaker of Realms and Janan Desecrator of the Sacred.”

“Send Lea, and Tor to them. If they fail, send C,” Blade said and turned to look out the
window of his war room, motioning Tech to leave.

The travelers were taken to a place known as the “Ghost City” by the flying elder dragon
of the ninja clan. Here they were to find the Ghost Key.
Here, from what the residents whailed, a rogue GRim reaper had killed and cursed all of
the people of the village with his scythe, for no apparent reason. Now all of the people
are stuck in a state of ghastliness and the only one who can reverse it is the reaper who
cursed them.

“Please good sir, save us. The world where we are we all appear normal to each other, but
whenever someone else comes from another part of the world to see us, we appear as
ghosts to them and they appear as ghosts to us. It was that damned reaper!” one of the
shopkeeps told Seren. The reaper dwelled in a house in the northern part of the village.

Seren and the others journeyed to the house in the northern part of the village. It was
there they found the reaper.

“Reaper! Why did you encurse this entire town!” demanded Seren.

“Ha! Why shouldn’t I have? I am a reaper, it is my job to reap the souls of the dead.”

“Seren, I’ll handle this,” Amon said. Amon drew his blade and entoning a few mantras,
sliced the neon blue blade through the air, and subsequently through the ethereal body of
the reaper.

“Ouch! How did you?”



                                            248
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     4
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

“Oh did that hurt my friend?” Amon said.

The reaper, anGRy, eyes glowing red, GRabbed his scythe. Thunder leapt from the
scythe and the GRoup of them found themselves back at the entrance of the ghost town,
however, now they no longer saw specters, they saw living beings. But it was too good
and too easy to be true.

The crypt keeper approached the GRoup.

“Sorry friends, you have been cursed by the reaper as well. Go again to his home. Here,
as us ghosts are, he is flesh and blood. Ask him to reverse the curse or kill him to reverse
it. Either way will do. Also….” the keeper hesitated.

“Also?” Seren asked.

“He has the Ghost Key that I know you have been looking for.”

Seren and the others entered the house of the reaper. The reaper, defiant to the end,
refuses to hand over the ghost key or undo the curse. After being dispatched, you find the
ghost key. Placing the ghost key in the ghost lock mechanism in the one village hut
restores the village to normal and on the way from the reaper’s house two villagers GReet
you and tell you…

“We know you have been in search of the Wind Key,” said the first villager.

“The City of Rivea..it holds a GReat power. When the Wind Key is placed in and
turned…” said the second villager.

“The calm, beautiful, fountain-like city of rivea is transformed into…” said the first
villager.

“Baal’Ta Tower…” said the second villager.

“The keys…the keys mean power. With them the ancient gods and goddesses of Terra
may be released,” said the first villager.

“The Opal. Once placed into Baal’Ta Tower, Baal’Ta Tower becomes full power,” Said
the second villager.

“When the ancient gods and goddesses of Terra are released, they may be combined into
the energy rift known as The Opal,” said the first villager.

“Baal’Ta Tower is a generator and intelligent agent,” said the second villager.




                                            249
2
5
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“The Opal is the core power source and processing unit,” said the first villager.

“Lose the power of the opal, lose control over the tower. Gain the power of the opal, gain
control over the tower and all of Terra’s future,” both villagers said, and then
simply….disappeared.

Seren, confused a bit after the villager’s warning, waited for the proverbial vertigo to
cease and stepped out of the reaper’s home. When he did a woman, with long blue hair,
cross eyes, and nails of stone appeared before him. Dressed deep purple and navy blue
sashes she raised an oversized dagger at Seren’s throat, poison dripping from its tip.

“I am Lea.”

“That’s terrific. I’m Seren,” Seren said mocking her GRaveness. She raised her dagger
and swung towards Seren’s ribs. Seren dodged them. “Why are you after me?” Seren
asked.

“I am only following orders. I am one of the four,” said Lea.

“One of what four?” Seren asked.

“She is one of the four GReat warrior-gods sealed that were imprisoned here. Along with
that nutcase Palice,” said Dais, hurrying to assist Seren.
The others joined in, fighting Lea. Then two other figures appeared. One was a tall, thin,
dark skinned man with an emblem seared into his chest. “That is Tor”, Lea explained,
jabbing again at Seren’s throat. The last unknown figure appeared, shielded by a GRey
wire mesh armor, it appeared to be nothing more than sackcloth until struck.

“Leave this guy for me and Artemis!” Nickerian said about the unknown figure in the
sackcloth.

“His armor, that GRey cloth, is made of a technology far beyond anything in this solar
system, let alone this world. Wherever he got it I know not. That’s how most his
belongings are,” Lea said about C who was now engaged in combat with both Nickerian
and Artemis. Arcus and Sinto had found their talents best matched against Tor, all three
fought on a guerrilla warfare like level and made good opponents.

A split appeared to the left of where Lea was Seren were in combat. Dais motioned to
Seren for his attention and pointed to the left, Lea’s eyes followed suit. “Oh no….not him
again,” both Lea and Seren said simultaneously, half a smile, and then back to combat.

Palice stepped through the time space split, covered in OBELISK ARMOR and wielding
the diamond sword and the timespace ring. “Felicia, switch with Dais for me. We will
need both my holy powers and Dais’ powers over time to conquer this one!” Amon


                                            250
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    5
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

yelled. Felicia aided Seren against Lea, female against female, estrogen clashing. Amon
and Dais raised their weapons and charged towards Palice.

So the final match up was Felicia and Seren versus Lea, Amon and Dais versus Palice,
Nickerian and Artemis versus C and Arcus and Sinto versus Tor. Both sides GRew
weaker and weaker until suddenly they gained a reprieve. The elder of the ghost village
ran across the battle field and got to Seren as he was fighting Lea alongside Felicia.
“Seren, take this key. It is the Fire Key. Take it to the Palace in the Northern Sand Dunes!
Hurry!

The Elder turns towards the four invaders and the heroes fighting them. He raises his
hand, one hand touching the fire key, the other GRasping his stave in the air. A cloud of
fire descends on the people and when it dissipates, all are gone. The four ancient warriors
of the tower dispatched to some unknown corner of the world, and the eight heroes to the
northern sand dunes.

“So, tough guy, do you think you could have beaten Laura or whatever her name was?”
Felicia asked Seren.

“Her name was Lea. I sense a note of jealousy,” Seren said back.

“Ha! To you?” Felicia laughed.

“Ha! From a sea urchin like yourself? You are related to them genetically aren’t you?”
Seren asked. Felicia smacks him in the back and he doubles over.

“Not so tough without your sword drawn…” Felicia says and laughs.

“Look out ahead everyone. Looks like a sand twister and its heading for us!” said Amon.

A twister was up ahead. It GRows closer and closer, seemingly headed directly for them.
The party tries to escape but can’t outrun it and gets sucked up into it. When they land
they find themselves in some unknown part of the desert in front of a quaint little house
that must have landed with them.

Inside the house, a man is scrubbing the sand off of his floors. When approached, he says,
“Hi. Umm…don’t mind me. I’m just trying to scrub up these floors. I found a key a while
back, I guess it was some sort of storm key. I used it on this lock in the wall and suddenly
a sand storm popped up out of nowhere and started carrying my house around! Some
transportation!” the man said and laughed for a bit. “I honestly don’t need it for anything
and it makes a big mess. Will you take it?” Seren takes the storm key. When they left the
house and looked outside, directly in front of them stood a small cavern.




                                            251
2
5
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Within the cave, they travel through sandstone walls and flooding rivers of sand and dust.
The eight find themselves in cavern after cavern of virtually the same thing, then finally
they arrive at a small statue of a dragon they have never seen before. Seren approaches
the dragon statue and looks upon it, fire key in hand. The dragon statue begins to move
and speak, saying,

“You have gathered powers and studied among the dragon people for very long now
Seren of Serenity. The gift I shall give you is the power to combine all powers you
receive from a dragon. Once you have learned enough, you to will be able to transform
into a powerful dragon, in fact, the most powerful of all. For his name is Omnious, for he
has all the power of any dragon.”

Once outside the cavern, Seren beaming with his newfound power, they tried using the
storm key, as the villager had, to summon a storm. This time, they needed it to take them
to the northern sands, where the palace of the fire key was. The funnel came, and after a
rough ride, they arrived in front of the ruins of the fire palace.

Inside the palace, Seren readied the fire key to be used on the lock.
 As Seren turned the key, the warrior from before, C, appeared.
“Ha! Your life is mine Seren,” said C.
“I doubt that. The eight of us against you are slim odds evil one,” said Amon.

“Ah..but I have the power to become…” the words were lost in the roar of a thousand
dragons. C had learned to take on the power of Omnious, the dragon whose power was all
dragons combined.

“Both Light Dragon and Dark Dragon…I call. Dragon Elf and GReen Dragon I
call….Brown Dragon and White Dragon, upon you I call…Blue Dragon and Sand
Dragon upon you I call…” C continued on, naming the power of each dragon he had
summoned. Finally, in a flash of light, C transformed into Omnious.

“Seren, what do we do? He must have found the alter also. We cannot fight a dragon of
that magnitude! Not even with twenty of us could we,” Felicia cried. Meanwhile Arcus
had taken his puny little Dark Dragon form to try to fend off C in Omnious Form.

“Felicia, I cannot fight him as Omnious yet. I do not know all of the dragon
transformations that I must know to fight him…there has to be another way,” Seren said.

“How about….alphabet soup?” a deep, GRissly voice said from behind them. It was
Albert.

“Albert! You shouldn’t be here. You’ll just be another victim,” said Seren.

Albert took off his right leather glove and lighly smacked Seren upside his head.


                                           252
                                                                                 2
                                                                                 5
                                                                [FANTASY SAGA M] 3


“You still got him in you. He’s been waiting. You have him trained like a dog, so now
tell him to attack…”

“Who?”

“M”




                                          253
2
5
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Birth Pains


The four A’s: Albert, Amon, Artemis, Arcus. and Nickerian, Felicia, Dais, Sinto were
there. All present and accounted for. And then there was Seren.

Seren lying upon the GRound. Seren ‘s head reeling, Seren’s dark side rearing. His mind,
soul and body splitting in two, mentally, spiritually, and physically. Half of him steeled in
red armor, half of him in bright blue and white tunic. Half of him with kind, calm, wise,
eyes. Half of him with the eyes of a murderer. And on the dividing line, a chasm, a literal
chasm in the fabric of the universe.

Reaching out of the chasm on M’s side, the hands of demons, the skeletal hands of the
undead, the slimy hands of god-knows whats. On the other side of the chasm, the hands
of past loved ones, wise old men, gentle nurses, the hands of angels and cherubim.

And then the screams. On the left side cries of pain and sobs of misery and wails of
sorrow traveling out of his mouth. And on the right screams of torturous pain and intense
vehemence; anger and hatred and denial. Yet in form, if there is such a thing, still one
being, one unit, one concise measurable person.

Had he known it would be this painful he never would have tried fully awakening M. But
now, now these were birth pains. If a mother gives birth to a child that is tiny, then
imagine that mother giving birth to a child of her own size and weight. That, is in a sense,
in the sense of capturing the metaphysical in the physical, what was going on right here.

Seren clasped the Vorpal Sword strapped to his left hip. M clasped the Vyral Sword
strapped to his right hip. In unified motion, they took their swords and rose them over
their heads. C continued to onlook in fascination with the others. Nobody had ever seen
anything like this in the history of Terra…ever. The three others had arrived also, Lea,
Palice, and Tor. They all looked onwards.

Both swords in the sky, then both plunged into the endless abyss where Seren and M’s
bodies met. First at the head. The two swords merged together like their bodies were.
Slicing. Downwards through the crevasse the swords went, shearing, tearing with light
like lasers separating two conjoined twins, cutting through space-time as if it were a piece
of weak, black construction paper in front of a toddler with scissors. Jagged cuts, bright
cuts, dangerous cuts.

The four ancient warriors who had been resurrected to follow Tech Demital’s lead now
stood surrounding the Seren-M person. The crevasse between him and M GRew, further
and further it expanded, bringing more and more darkness. And out of the ether that
flowed strongly through that crevasse arose an ancient artifact, a totem pole like ruin of
stone and black metal. As Seren and M split so did the pillar. Seren GRasped frantically,


                                            254
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    5
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

without success, at the GRound, digging his nails, clawing, doing anything he could to
gain leverage and pull himself away from the rift. M on the other side did the same.

Then something miraculous happened.

Lea took the hand of Seren, Palice the hand of M.

C became humanoid once again, and both himself and Tor approached Seren and M.

The Sigil on Tor’s chest burned brightly like the light of the sun. C old GRey eyes cast
off a blue glow. A voice from beyond the GRave, beyond the world, beyond what we
know to be real, moaned faintly from the crevasse.

“Take out the ethereal key from the rift Seren,” said Lea. Seren reached down into the
ethereal nothingness and pulled out a black skeleton key, speckled in blue and stardust.

“Seren, we are going home,” said Palice.

All of the others were frozen in time.

A lock, fit just for the ethereal key arose. M turned towards the right and then towards the
left, looking at the ancient warriors. Then vanished into the crevasse, motioning to
follow. Sereen was seated before the rift as he watched the four ancient warriors follow
into the rift. Seren placed the ether key into the ethereal lock and turned it. The rift
vanished, and time resumed. Seren’s companions looked around befuddled.

“Don’t worry. It’s been taken care of. Let’s go. The enchanted stairway ahead leads to the
second negative floor of the tower, Plateon, the Hill World. We aren’t done here. Not
yet,” Seren said.




                                            255
2
5
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]



Sandre Floor Minus Two - Plateaon

The second basement floor of the life devouring tower of Sandre was filled with low
hills, creeks and brush, and maple and oak trees. The path from the enchanted staircase
lead to a small stream with a makeshift bridge formed form a fallen oak tree. The path
continued on through several small patches of trees so scant they hardly qualified as
forests, and then down a hollow and into a tightly carved valley. As the journey men
continued on, the sun was low in the sky over the valley ahead and yellow lamp light
shone out of buildings made of stone and wicker. Seren and the others found a nearby
tavern.

Inside the tavern the travelers were stunned to find that most of the town consisted of
neither light dragon soldiers, dark dragon soldiers, nor regular townspeople, but all
knights of some sort of defunct order. One knight, seated by himself in the corner,
babbled about a “neon key” that formed “beams of photons.” After further inquiry, the
travelers discovered that the knights once served under some sort of king, but the Dark
Dragon Knights took over their castle and beheaded their king. Those who lived through
the battle fled to this valley and settled here until they could mount a counter offensive.

The Dark Dragons had taken over the fortress in order to lay their hands upon the neon
key of which the drunkard had spoke. The valley that knights had settled in once had
been a river bed, but a dam was constructed in the north, diverting the river and swelling
it into a lake. The material that the Dark Dragons had used to construct the dam however,
was combustible if struck by the photon beam generated by the neon key.

Seren wanted to know more about this neon key and addressed the one sober knight in
the bar. “Barkeep, do you have a minute? I have some questions that I wish to ask you,”
said Seren.

“Yeah, how much do you have on you? If you aren’t drinking, I charge by the minute,”
said the bartender.

Seren GRunted. “The neon key, what do you know about it?”

“I know the Dark Dragon Soldiers have just excavated another entrance to the neon
palace, where the lock for the key is held. That’s why the western road out of the valley is
blocked. They haven’t found the lock quite yet, but they will soon. What they don’t know
is…well, how much do you have on you?”

Seren slammed down another gold piece.




                                            256
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    5
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

“Ah ha…good man. What they don’t know is that there is an entrance into the neon
palace directly from our castle, the damn fortress they are sitting in right now! Ha ha,”
said the bartender.

“Is that all you can tell me? Do you know anything else that might help us?” asked Seren
as he put down three more gold coins.

“Yeah one last thing. The Light Dragons came through here recently. They are preparing
an attack on our old castle tomorrow morning when dawn breaks. If you are after that
neon key like everyone else tomorrow morning is the time to get it. Talk to the general,
he’s the big guy in the corner of the bar,” said the barkeep.

The travelers stayed above the bar in the inn that night and as dawn approached, the
travelers along with the general of the valley knights led the onslaught on the valley
castle. The army of the lion knights penetrated the ranks of the dark dragons. The
travelers pierced the ranks and moved forward, slaying dragon after dragon before they
could transform into beasts.

“Seren, we must move past the enemy and start our invasion of the interior of the castle is
we ever hope to find the neon key,” said Amon.

Inside they fought past the dark dragon ranks. One of the light dragon soldiers, who
called himself Eden GRabbed Seren by the sleeve and pulled him away from dark
dragon’s sword swing. “I am Eden. I have been sent by the lord of the light dragons to
help you through this battle. It is not a battle meant for men. All of you, follow me!”
Eden said.

Eden lead them through passageway after passageway, going deeper and deeper into the
depths of the knight’s castle. They stopped at an oaken doorway set into the cold
basement stone. Two dark dragon lords appeared who had been following them.

“Quickly, inside. I shall hold them off,” said Eden as he pushed the others inside.

Inside, standing upon a platform amidst a fountain of glowing blue water, was the neon
key.

“Seren! GRab it and let’s get out of here!” cried Felicia

Seren reached for the key and suddenly was frozen in stance. An old man entered the
room, limping. The others ran towards him to help him.

“What happened to you old man? Are you ok?” Felicia asked. A red glow appeared
around the old man’s eyes and he quickly looked up, eyes a blaze with red fire, with n o




                                            257
2
5
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

color but dark pupil. “I am tired of your foolish endeavours. I am Rerose, general of the
Unholy Order of the Dragon’s of Darkness. I am the commander of the dark dragons.”

The old man’s disguise was cast off and as it fell dissolved into nothingness. Before them
stood a gigantic, physically built, powerful warrior. With eyes of fire and pupils like an
abyss.

“I have you where I want you. Hand over the neon key or…”

“Or?” Seren asked.

“Have you ever been to a Dark Dragon prison?” Rerose asked Seren.

“No..” Seren responded.

“That is because there are none. We leave no survivors. Those we wish to question are
taken to our castle and stripped of their skin, then muscle, and finally their bones are
shattered while they confess ever single thing they have ever done in their life to
us…hoping to avoid the horror of the hellish pain they are enduring,” Rerose responded.

Seren, along with the others, drew his weapon.

“Then a fight it is,” said Rerose.

Rerose already giant like body began to scale and change shape. From behind his ears,
long ram-like horns sprouted and spiraled, his ears lengthend like those of a rodent, long
pointy and erect. The armor surrounding his forearms and his wrist guards GRew like
liquid metal and wrapped around his hands, then dividng and protruding into pointed,
black claws. His chest broadened, and horns pierced the skin and multiplied all around
his neck and shoulder line as well as in other places as well. Finally when he reached
almost full scale, out of his back GRew jagged, black and GRey wings, with tinges of red
dashed here and there on their surface. At the tip of each wing, a curved, spike the
consistency of GRanite. His deep black eyes blinked amidst their red fire effervescence,
and from him came first a snarl, then a laugh. Seren and the others looked like miniature
doll figures in comparison. Arcus didn’t even bothering transforming.

Eden suddenly started speaking to Seren telepathically “Seren, you can’t fight him. You
aren’t powerful enough. You will never survive the battle. None of you will. I’ll burst
into the room and distract him. Take the neon key and run to the throne room of the
castle. It leads to an isolated tower that climbs up from the center keep. At the top is a
teleporter that will take you outside the castle so you won’t have to deal with any dark
dragons in your escape. Take the key to the neon palace excavation site, it should be free
from dark dragons because of the battle. I’ve told the others as well. Hurry!”




                                           258
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    5
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

Eden burst through the door. Seren GRabbed the neon key and angling it at the wall next
to him, used its power and burned a hole into the next room. The rest of the travelers
followed while Eden battled Rerose.

Once they were out they looked around and realized how immense the battle truly was.
“I don’t even think they are noticing us but I’m not going to provoke them. The way we
came in is completely congested with light dragons fighting dark dragons,” said Artemis.

“Right, we have to find the throne room and its tower that Eden spoke of,” said Dais.

They made their way out into inner chambers of the keep. In the center was the
unguarded throne room that Rerose had made his home prior to their invasion. They
reached the second floor of the tower and Rerose appeared by teleportation.

“Haha. Eden made a delicious snack. As for all of you, I am afraid I am so full I will only
be able to eat one carcass of yours at a time,” Rerose started to describe how he would
kill the travelers.

“Shh….follow my lead,” said Sinto somewhat out of the blue, surprising everyone. He
waved his hand in front of Rerose and then back again. Rerose looked about the tower
room and then directly at the warriors.

“By the devil? Where the hell did they disappear to?”

“Sinto, if you knew how to do this then why didn’t you…” Seren began.

“Shh….some secrets need to remain secret. Follow me,” Sinto said.

The party slipped past the confused Rerose and travelled upwards, floor after floor of the
tower. Meanwhile, Rerose continued to scour each floor looking for the unperceivable
ninja-charmed warriors. At the very top of the tower, known as “Lord’s Watch”, the
party walked to the sigil carved in the center of the floor, and stood upon it, amidst the
billowing clouds from the sky above Plateon. Seren kneeled down and touched his palm
to the Sigil and activated it. An instant later, they found themselves teleported via the
royal escape route to outside the castle, near the dark dragon excavation site, which was
now dark dragon-less.

The excavation site reminded Seren of that first excavation site he had seen that was truly
significant. The one that had held the first Techno Knight he had come into contact with.
The one that had stripped out the evil in him and was a catalyst for the process that had
made him into the holy knight he had become today.

The bottom floor of the excavated tunnel was not like something Seren had expected. The
lock for the neon key was there, but the lock sat upon a small island magically floating


                                           259
2
6
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

above pieces of arcane technology, strange sorts of gears and pipes and levers and relays.
The machinery at present was motionless. Seren approached the floating island, and
placed the neon key into the lock and turned the tumbler.

The island containing the key floated down and joined the arcane machinery, which
began to turn and move. An image, a holoGRaphic image, appeared of a gargantuant
cannon sat upon the top of the plateau of which the excavated cavern was a part. Seren
found he could control the cannon’s direction and several other variables that formed the
part of the neon key’s laser cannon.

As Seren prepared to test fire, the General from the Knights of the Lion, the knights that
lived in the valley, entered the control room.

“Seren, thank you for what you have done. By recovering the key we can destroy that
damn and return life to our valley. Also, if you will allow me to assist you, we can take
care of another, more poignant problem,” said the Knights General.

The Knight set the cannon to “homing dispersement” mode and fired it. Photon clusters,
nuggests of blue laser energy exploded from the end of the cannon, swirling and dancing
like homing missles for their target, dark dragons. Dark Dragon after dark dragon was
struck, one by one, until Rerose emerged from the Lion Knights castle.

“That little spark of energy won’t harm me!” he announced in defiance.

“Seren, watch and learn. Ha!” the general laughed and pressed another button on the
holoGRaphic menu screen, setting scatter mode to full concentration laser.

The cannon fired again, this time instead of scattering, the fully concentrated beam of
energy homed in on Rerose, striking him full force. Even though the neon key held only a
fraction of Sandre’s power, it was still the power of a god or goddess and powerful
enough to irradicate an insignificant mortal.

Rerose, now crumpled but with one knee upright, cried in defiance, “Not yet! Not yet will
you slay me with your enslaved deity!” Rerose closed its eyes, flicked its tail, rose up
again to its feet, then leapt up and dashed into the sky.

The general turned towards Seren, “Return to the castle. It is safe. The activation of the
neon key should have lowered the large heavy gate in front of the throne room. Take that
gate upwards into the tower. There were the teleporter is, you will also find an enchanted
staircase to another level of the tower.”

“Which one?” asked Artemis.




                                            260
                                                                                      2
                                                                                      6
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

“ The most important one of all. The one that really, isn’t there at all,” said the general as
he turned and walked away.

“Well what is it called?” Seren yelled across the battle field.

“I don’t know. Ask the deities that dwell there. They might know,” said the general and
he vanished away.




                                             261
2
6
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Sandre Floor Null – The Null Floor

The travelers had taken the enchanted staircase they were directed towards and were now
standing at its exit, the very entrance of what they would later be told was the null floor.

In front of them were two monolithic pillars, the right pillar with a red crest written in the
colors of deep blood, the left pillar with a GReen crest written in the colors of deep plant
life. As they crossed between the two pillars, a ghostly figure appeared in front of them,
emanating yellow, sunlight like, energy as it spoke to them.

“What are you?” asked Dais.

“I am a light elf. It is a pity you have only seen a few of us. Once, there were many, ver
many in the world. As well as light dragons, but I believe you should understand that
now. It was we light elves, with the assistance of the light dragons, who built both Sore
and Sandre. In your world, the light dragons are extinct, and my race only existed in bed
time stories, save a few such as your companion Sinko, the hybrid.”

“So where is this place?” asked Felicia.

“Ahh….GReetings sister of the water. This place, all of you, this place is the very top of
the tower Sandre. As you see around you, there are many pedestals, like GRaves. They
say ‘here lies emrald’ or ‘here lies neon’. Some of the pedestals have entities floating
above them, some not.”

“True, but what does it mean? And what is that gigantic pit in the center of the floor?”
Amon asked.

“Each pedestal represents a goddess or god bound by the keys that control this tower.
When a key is placed into a lock and unlocked by you, the god or goddess is released and
their shimmer appears above its respective pedestal here…”

“And the pit in the center? It is like an inverted pyrimad, each level smaller and lower,”
said Sinto.

“That is where Rivea, the sacred temple you saw, ‘fits’.”

“Fits like how?” Seren asked.

“You will understand once you have brought the rest of the keys,” said the light elf guide.

“What do we do know?” Seren and Albert both asked.




                                             262
                                                                                       2
                                                                                       6
                                                                      [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

“At the bottom of the pit in the center of this floor is a teleporter to the physical top of the
tower, that is, outside these magical world-floors. If you travel down the side of the tower
you will be able to enter the topmost floor, the Light Dragon’s floor and go from there,”
said the light elf guide.

“Why there?” asked Albert.

“Because, ‘there’ has been desecrated. While the Light Dragons were fighting battles in
other parts of the tower, they left their own castle and world virtually defenseless. You
must go and help them. If you do so, you will find the remainder keys you need,” the
light elf said.

“Ok, let’s go,” said Seren. The teleporter at the bottom of the inverse pyrimad pit meant
for Rivea transported them outside of the magics of the tower, and on to its real, physical
top in the world of Terra.




                                              263
2
6
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]



The Swords and Saints


They discovered the very peak of the tower was surrounded by the same, pseudo-organic,
black, symbiot like material that the rest of the tower was surrounded by, including
embedded demon eyes, but there was a sturdy, flat, top floor embedded within the
material. Along the rectangular prism that made up the upper tower, was a sturdy ladder
with eyes complete with flickering eye lids in a vertical pattern along either side of the
ladder. The party climbed downwards from the pinnacle of the tower, down several
hundered yards, until they found a doorway on what appeared to be some sort of
maintenance entrance. Once inside, they found themselves in a floor-less cloud filled
room. It was not zero gs nor were they flying but they were not standing on much of
anything either. The room itself was some sort of transition room, to take a person from
the real world into this contrived, artificial reality generated by Sandre. A door was ahead
in the distance and when they passed through it, they found themselves standing in the
center of the the Light Dragon’s Empire. In the center was the massive cathedral like
“Lightness Castle”. To the north was the City of Sicon, to the west the City of Siton, to
the east the City of Kiton, and to the south the City of Liton. The actual dividing lines of
the cities was difficult to tell since virtually the entire floor-world was metropolized by
the Light Dragons.

Seren and Albert stood at the entrance of the ruins of the once majestic City of Liton.
They began questioning the many injured and maimed soldiers that lay about the
smoldering city. One in particular seemed to know more than the rest.

“Yes, indeed this is the city of Liton. We once held the Key of Light, one of the most
powerful of all the deity keys. We were the most powerful of the city states surrounding
Lightness Castle. I guess that is why they struck us first,” the soldier said.

“What has happened to this Key of Light? Do you know?” asked Albert.

“The Dark Dragons…they locked it in the royal vault. However, they didn’t know that to
unlock the royal vault, you have to have the keys of the four cities all at the same time.
For example, the key for this city is the Bronze Key.

“GReat. Where do we find this Bronze Key?” Seren asked.

“It was hidden by one of our men in one of the houses when the dark dragons attacked. I
cannot believe it. They even shattered the elven crystal in the shrine. They were
merciless. I don’t remember them being as cruel as they have become lately.”

“Let’s everyone split up and search these houses and see if we can find the bronze key,”
Seren said.


                                            264
                                                                                      2
                                                                                      6
                                                                     [FANTASY SAGA M] 5


After a short search, Felicai and Dais discovered the Bronze Key hidden in a basement
beneath a series of locked floorboards.

“Hey guys,” Seren said.

“Yeah?”, said Felicia, Dais, and the others.

“What would you think of splitting up?”, Seren said.

“How so?”, Amon asked.

“Well, how about Albert and I check out this Kiton town, and the other town, umm….I
think it is called Sicon and the other one, Siton.”

“And what do you want us to do?”

“Try and meet with the king of the light dragons again. He should be in Lightness Castle.
We’ll take over the rest,” Seren said.

With the first of the four keys obtained, Seren and Albert left Liton through the gate
house and the castle walls to the next sister city, Kiton. The rest of the party, Artemis,
Amon, Arcus, Sinto, Felicia, Nickerian, Dais traveled to Lightness Castle to seek an
audience with the King and possibly seen Sir Relm once again.

When the brothers arrived, the elder of Kiton was fishing over a bridge in the city and
addressed Seren,

“GReetings traveler! How may I help you?”

“We just came from the city of Liton. There are many wounded, how fare thee?” Seren
asked.

“We are well. We were not hit as hard by the attack of the dark dragons. But yet, it is
true, we still have many homes and other buildings to repair and reconstruct,” the elder
said. “If there is any way I can help you, please let me know.”

“Well, eldest one, we are hoping to find a key for this town. We were told there were four
magical keys, each one hidden in one of the towns surrounding Lightness Castle.”

“Yes young travelers. In the center of town is a tall pillar upon which stands a statue of a
virtuous light dragon archerer. If you reach your arm into the thick crack that goes down
the side of the pedestal, you will find the key.”




                                               265
2
6
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Thank you wise one!” Seren said. The travelers went to the pedestal, and indeed, they
did find a key in the pillar, the gold key.

Seren, and Albert continued onwards to the next town, once again going through the gate
houses and walls of Lightness Castle. This time, they found themselves in enemy
territory. The City of Sicon was under turmoil, with some parts of the city still under dark
dragon control. The leader of the dark dragons in Sicon lived in a home adjacent to the
pub.

“We are going for the throat. Directly to the leader. I saw him go into that residence up
ahead. I’m sure he will be able to tell us where the key for Sicon is.”

Seren, along with Albert, broke down the door of the dark dragon leader’s residence, and
with both swords drawn, demanded the key.

“I am called the Horned Commander of the Dark Dragon Armies,” the dark dragon leader
said.

“We are here for the silver key,” said Albert, sword pointed at his throat, twenty two
pistol pointed on his forehead between his eyes. Seren’s Vorpal Sword pulsed with
radiant energy as it hung in his hand by his left side.

The horned commander looked downwards and started to stretch. Albert pushed his
sword tip further and drew a tiny bit of blood.

“We aren’t going to stand around and wait for you to transform into a beast,” said Albert.
“Silver Key or you die. Or maybe both. Depends on how many drinks Seren is buying me
at the bar tonight,” Albert said and laughed. Seren rolled his eyes.

“*cough*. The silver key is hidden in a chest in the north west part of town. Only I have
the key to the silver key’s chest. Here it is. Now leave me and my troops be.”

The skeleton key from the horned commander opened the bronze chest. Within Albert
and Seren found the silver key and only needed one more key to be able to retrieve the
Key of Light.

The last town, the Town of Siton, was filled with Dark Dragon Regime rebels. Nearly full
intact, the town was under dark dragon rule but would not be for long if the rebels had
their way. Once informed of Seren and Albert’s cause, the rebels gave them the last key,
the platinum key.




                                            266
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    6
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7


In Lightness Castle, Seren and Albert arrived just in time for an audience with the King
of the Light Dragons and his knight, Sir Relm.

“It is terrific to see you once again, all of you!” the King said and GReeted Seren with a
strong handshake and a smile.

“I have been told it is time, is this true?” asked the King.

“Yes indeed it is. I believe we have every key…that is, except one.,” said Seren.

“The Wind Key? Is that what you seek?” asked the King.

“Yes the Wind Key, and we must unlock the Key of Light using the four city keys.”

“Understood. We are in possession of both the Wind Key and the Key of Light. We must
make haste and gather these two keys. I will join them milord, if it is not of your
objection,” said Relm.

“Yes, Sir Relm, go ahead. Report back to me when you have all of the keys in your
possession. It is time….” said the King of Light.




                                             267
2
6
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

RiverWind and RiverSky

The King of the Dragons of Light, a.k.a. Light Dragons, led the parade of men through
the forest, along the riverside, to the magnificent palace of Rivea sitting calmly in the
lake waters ahead. To his left, single file, was Seren, Artemis, Amon, Felicia,
and to his right, also in single file, was Albert, Arcus, Dais, Sinto, Nickerian. Directly
behind the King of the Dragons of Light was his top soldier, Sir Relm. Behind the
travelers were the five Light Dragon Lords, followed by and spread out in lines of twenty
men, five files behind them, were the Light Dragon Knights, and then twenty files of
Light Dragon Soldiers.

The party halted when they reached Rivea, and all of the war party knelt down and closed
their eyes in prayer. The king stepped back up and the others followed suit. The King
turned to Seren and then Albert, whispering something in each of their ears.
Seren held in his hand the Wind Key and Albert held the Light Key.

Seren entered a small room at the base of the beautiful Rivea. Inside, was the special lock
for the Wind Key, once turned would transport the entire structure of Rivea to the Null
Floor, and fundamentally change the unsuspecting peaceful palace of water into the
kernel of a war machine. Seren bowed his head in prayer for the consequences of what
might happen from what he was about to do, and then closed his eyes again, clenched
them shut, and turned the key.

Then nothing it seemed. Only one key, the key of light remained. Once that key was
turned, all of the gods and goddesses entombed in Sandre would be awoken. Seren
walked outside to find himself not in a beautiful lake forest, but in the cold, crypt like
world of floor null. Rivea had properly been transported and now filled in the inverted
pyrimad abyss. Around him, the GRavestone pedestals will alive with flickers of ghastly
life. That is, all but the most important one, the light key. What was once the palace of
Rivea was now a gargantuant rectangular structure, higher than wider, with staircases and
elevators for transport from the bottom to the top. Exposed circuitry revealed some sort
of homogenization of magical glyphs and electrical engineering. Seren walked to the
transformed, modernized Rivea, and ascended its stairway. At the top, a smaller
rectangular solid sat upon the main prism, and a sliding door mechanism gave entry to its
front. Inside the top rectangular solid was a platform amongst an abyss. In the center of
the abyss was a massive reactor, and what must have been, the very first Deko reactor
created since the time of the Keeper’s and ancient ones who first populated the planet.

Inside, the ceiling was made of jagged crystal. Seren stood upon a metal GRating
platform that had the power to be steered around to different parts of the black abyssal
room he had entered. From the crystalline ceiling and from the nothingness of the abyss
below, transparent, memebrane, organic-like piping carried energy, fluids, and even
steam around the reactor , in and out of its constituent parts. In the center of the reactor,
which was not currently active, was a key emblem superimposed over a sun emblem, and


                                            268
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     6
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

below that there was an enchanted lock, most likely for the Key of Light. There was a
knocking sound outside.

Albert had arrived in almost perfect time. He hopped on the GRating and the two piloted
the platform up to the central core of the reactor where the lock stood. Seren turned to
Albert and said, “This thing is sort of like the reactors we destroyed, but in other ways
not. There seems to be something different, benign in a way, about it.”

“Well I guess we should do what we have come to do. I just wish I knew what our father
was up to right now. He must be planning something,” Seren said.

Albert slid the key of light into the lock and turned. The cylinder that served as the kernel
of the reactor lit into brilliant golden light. The membrane piping turned to a beautiful sky
blue with neon bubbles moving this way and that. The whole tower shook, not just the
rectangular pyrimad they stood in, not just the floor of the null floor, but the entire tower,
it shook all the way down to the negative floors deep within the stony earth.

Two cylindrical beams of light appeared, one on each side of the catwalk opposite the
reactor. Seren looked at Albert, “Do we go there?”. Albert said, “I think so. Ready when
you are.”

The cyrlindrical beams teleported Albert and Seren to the highest point in the world.
They were atop Rivea, now denoted by the computer as the “Power Tower”, at the very
top of the Tower of Sandre. And in front of them, was an ornate sculpted structure, of a
strange composition of metal and structure. The bronze casing had a single polished ivory
wing stretched over it, as if it was protecting an egg. But the casing was empty with no
egg in sight.

Nickerian talked to Seren through his communicator, “Seren. From what you are saying, I
think you are seeing where the Opal is supposed to rest.”

“An opal…I saw one before. Blade had used one to try and kill us. What are they?” Seren
asked Nickerian.

“They are a very special form of life. Sometimes produced by the gods and used in
reproduction. I don’t know the details, but just as a human egg can produce a hole person
if fertilized, the opals can produce a god given the right ‘fertilizer’ of sorts. Rivea, to
reach full potential, must require one,” said Nickerian.

Then there was a shimmer. In front of Seren and Albert stood the light elf caretaker of
Floor Null.

“GReetings my friends,” he said. “Our tower is almost fully under control. But before it
can accept any orders, an opal must be inserted into the sacred cradle before you. The


                                             269
2
7
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

gods and goddesses you have freed by unlocking their GRaves using the tower’s keys,
well they have concentrated their power for you and have given you this....” The elf
handed Seren a blue, membrane-like, fleshy yet crystalline, orb. It was an opal like Blade
had had before, but was slightly different. It seemed to be more aware, and have more
influence on things around it, it seemed to be much more powerful.

Seren and Albert, brothers, almost to the point of having telepathy, often knew each
others thoughts and in this case, both knew their course of action without a single word
concerning it. They gently placed the opal into the bronze and ivory cradle. Rivea shook
and water poured out of the cradle and down the (rivea) power tower. A flash of energy
came forth and Seren and Albert found themselves inside some sort of null space. There
was nothing but whiteness. Not a chair, not a lamp, not a single clump of earth or blade
of GRass.

“Computer,” Seren and Albert said in unison.

“Yes. I am Rivea, version 2.0.”

“Why are you version 2.0?”

“Version 1.0 was denoted as Sore and became terminated. Borrowing certain hardware
and software caused the implementation of Sandre to be denoted 2.0”

“Rivea, I have one and only one significant command for you.”

“Would you like a command list?”

“No. Begin ProGRam. Label as Ariel”

“ProGRam input parser begun, awaiting instructions”

“Instruction 1. Create high speed escape vehicle, preferably of airship design.”

“Instruction 2. Place escape vehicle at a safe location outside of any sort of blast zone
emenated by the tower.”

“Instruction 3. Teleport all known consorts of Seren and Albert Clef residing in the
Tower onto the escape vehicle.”

“Instruction 4. Enter reconstruct/restore mode and rollback civilizations destroyed or
damaged by the tower Sandre in previous operating modes.”

“Instruction 5. Immediate transport of all citizens residing in Sandre to their appropriate
city, village, or other social collective.”


                                            270
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     7
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1


“Instruction 6. Teleport myself, Albert, and all other cohorts to the escape vehicle.”

“End proGRam Ariel. Begin ProGRam Armos.”

“Beginning proGRam labeled ‘Armos’”

“Good. Instruction 1. Make sure ProGRam Ariel has completed.”

“Instruction 2. Make certain escape vehicle is in proper distance for safety of passengers
on board.”

“Instruction 3. Kill –all –internal command”

“Sir, that command will cause Sandre, as well as all other subordinate systems, such as
myself, to null our proGRams and destroy our instruction set.”

“I know. The instruction stands.”

“Very well.”

“Instruction 4. Physically erase all remnants of the Tower Sandre and its inner
components from its host planet.”

“Understood.”

“End ProGRam Armos.”

“One last thing Rivea,” said Albert.

“Execute Ariel and then execute Armos,” said Seren.

“Order acknowledged.”

“Execute them now,” said Albert and Seren simultaneously.




                                            271
2
7
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Turn a stone and I AM there

Seren and all of his companions stood like an army upon the deck of the evacuation
vessel: essentially a geared up airship, fast and formidable. Some of his companions had
never seen nor met some of the others and they were all trying to get acquainted despite
the task at hand. The ship was hovering on autopilot, constantly having to adjust its
position to stay on the horizon of the colossal, beyond nuclear-scale, explosion
reverberating from GRound zero, where Sandre had stood. The other commands that had
been entered into the Rivea core computer system by Albert and Seren before its self
destruction had actually done well in patching up and restoring some life back into the
broken, scorched planet that Sandre had sucked dry. This explosive release of the
remaining energy would surely restart the wheel of life, GRanted one could escape the
initial blast.

Each man (or woman) who had accompanied Seren on his quest now stood upon the deck
of the airship, thanks in part to another command given to Rivea before self-destruct.
Nickerian pulled hard on the wheel, just keeping the nose of the ship he had named
Serendipity up from the ball of fiery GReen plasma and debris. The destruction of the
tower had been the only way, and it in all fairness had been their plan from the beginning.
Sure, it might have had other uses, good uses, but it was too dangerous a tool for any to
wield. That was why it had been dismantled and sealed away by the light elves and the
light dragons so many millennia ago. Now, Seren and Nick were determined to try and
use his magic and the magic and abilities of his many companions to go on damage
control while the tower rocked back and forth in pulses of flame, and try to keep its
destruction from taking away any of the lives of the people below. Nickeriann hoped to
create some sort of containment field to wrap around the tower until it was done
destabilizing. Nobody had ever done something like this, especially sporadically and
without planning and by using such varying energies (because of the energies source
coming from so many different individuals).

The unstable deck of the airship caused everyone to fall down to their knees as it
repositioned itself amongst the shock wave.

“Seren, we shall perish if this continue,” said Samuel the techno knight.

“We are going to die!,” said Cindy the forest elf.

“Is this…is this how it ends?” asked Intee.

“It has happened. Complete Armageddon, and we brought it on ourselves. And to make
matters worse….Blade has survived,” said Legend. In flight speeding away from the
unstable burning tower and into the clouds were the shadowy figures of Emperor Blade
and Tech Demital.



                                              272
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     7
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

The most adept at magic used their powers to repel and contain the fireballs launched one
after the other from the site of the explosion. The others manned the ships controls and
engineering department, trying to keep it steady in the wake of Sandre. What they had
done was unheard of, not even the ancient light elves and dragons of old had tried to
destroy the tower, they simply sealed it away. But Seren and his companions were trying
to obliterate the indestructible tower.

“They will not take my life from me! It is my life, I will give it the cause before the
darkness of Sandre take it from me…” said Rose.

The travelers were able to halt and push back the first shock waves and explosions, but
now where the Tower had been a vast darkness had gathered around a shear in space and
time formed from the destruction and absence of the tower.

The shadowy shear reached out its shadowy tendrils, like a fog of soot, the tendrils
reached out taking the shapes of hands and other such appendages, trying to reclaim its
old victims who had been freed.

A fireball struck another of Seren’s companions, this time it was Dais who was struck
and knocked down. Unconscious, dead, Seren didn’t know. He didn’t have time to look
and tell.

A fountain of flame engulfed Nickerian and he ran, and writhed about the deck of ship,
screaming in horrible pain. Arcus looked to Seren with tears in her eyes and said, “My
God…what sort of victory is this?”

Man after man fell to the onslaught of hellfire released by the dieing tower. The shear
drew the ship in closer and closer with its tendrils, while the explosions and fiery
fountains tortured the ships inhabitatnts, and singed and burned the hull of the ship.

There were thirty crew members when they had begun their escape. All of Seren’s
companions had been brought together for what seemed to be one last fight. The
proGRam he had entered into Sandre had brought them all back, all in one place for a
showdown and escape.

Out of the thirty, Sir Samuel the Techno Knight, Sir Legend the Lord of the Techno
Knights, Darkhum the Vampire, Felicia of the mer-tribe, Cindy Symphona of the Night
Elves, Rose of the Dryads of the Dwarven Mountains, Sinko of the Sky Elves, Specter,
the disembodied spirit of the Light Elves, Gerald the soldier of the imp kingdom, Intee
the mimic and thief, Taran and Toran – brother and sister of the Village of Zig, Smog the
shadow drake, Ether the Elden Light Dragon, Sneak, ninja of the black widow clan,
Sinto, ninja of the blue scorpion clan, Ome Sumac master samurai, Rock Lord stone
elemental, Magmus fire elemental, Elden Ice Dragon Geebin, Dwaton the dwarf,
Nickerian airship captain and engineer, Kneed the inventor and scientist, Prince Albert,


                                             273
2
7
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

brother of Prince Seren, Sir Amon, leader of the Knights Templar, King Artemis, king of
Serenity, Dais, Acolyte of Time, and the beautiful Arcus of the Dark Dragons, were no
more. Of those who remained, Seren and Eiedos stood proudly on the deck amongst the
dead, face first into the raging windows of fire and blood.

“So….Eiedos, the tower has been annihilated. The Emperor and Demital have escaped
however…” Seren said to the son of the master.

“Indeed you are correct Seren. But our ordeal is not done. Would you let all of those
innocent lives go to waste until the end of time?”

“No…what should I do?” asked Seren.

“Look below. There is the crater that has formed where Sandre once stood. Many years
ago your father stood in the same spot, but for different reasons. I suggest you enter the
doorway you will find there, friend.”

“I shall. Thank you friend. Where now do you go?”

“Back to EIedon I will travel and recuperate. Then who knows…” said Eiedos. The two
shook hands and Seren leapt off the ship and plummeted downwards, landing upon the
dirt and stone of the crater.

In the crater were placed four cylindrical pillars of equal size, placed in the corners of a
sort of invisible square. Seren had landed in the middle of them. In front of him, part of
the crater wall had been structured with some odd alloy, the metal supports bolted into
the crater’s stone. In the center of the metal supports stood an oaken door, enGRaved in
runes, sitting sturdily within a GRanite archway. Seren stepped forward, reaching a finger
towards the wooden doors. On each door a large pentaGRam had been enscribed,
containing all of the other runic writing.’

Seren, alone once again in this world, but not for long, opened the creaking old doors.
They were heavy, built strong and built to last. When he stepped through, he found
himself walking upon a translucent blue glass walkway, below him were stars twinkling
int eh dark, comets streaking through the floor-sky. Asteroids tumbled and planets turned
around foreign suns. A voice echoed, “Welcome to the hall of judgement. This is was
sealed beneath Sore. In this place the legendary warriors of past sealed away the strongest
of deities. Here the three supremes were sealed away. The Emperor, with Sandre lost,
hopes to use his remaining powers to control the supremes. They must be destroyed,” and
then the voice was silent. In the empty space around the room, between Seren and the
rooms crystallized walls, small islands of stone and crystal floated and moved about the
empty space. Seren walked along the glass walkway towards the next doorway. This door
was fashioned of metal and porcelain. It sat admist gold bricks, supported by gold pillars




                                            274
                                                                                   2
                                                                                   7
                                                                  [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

with silver edgings. Upon opening the porcelain door, Seren found himself in another
peculiar and unique room.

Seren entered the room of the United. He found himself in a vast deep hallway, with
floors made of shining silver and pillars of platinum reaching high into the sky. Blue
sparks rained down like drizzle before a storm, and before him stood a gargantuan statue
or a powerful knight. To look at the knight was to be stricken with fear. The voice echoed
out again, for the last time.

“You!” the voice shouted, “I am the spirit of crusaders gone past. You did not know who
you were when you were born but we all have a destiny to fulfill. You! You are a warrior
of light! Take the power of your birthright. Approach me!” the echo commanded from
the statue.

Seren walked forward and looked up at the face of the statue, two feet higher than
himself. The glowing drizzle of stars started to GRavitate towards him, then in an instant
the stars swirled around him rapidly and the Vorpal Sword began to glow a bright blue.
Seren unsheathed it and thrust it into the sky. The stars swirled around the Vorpal Sword
as well. Then, a voice spoke through Seren’s mouth that did not seem to be his own….

“My friends have not fallen in vain. When evil encroaches upon our light, when it tries to
snuff out our light, men must join together and unite. But what of the men who have
passed? Have they no part to play in their world? Let them not to have fallen in vain, but
let their souls fight again, let their souls act through me and join me so that we are not
one but we are many. Let it be that we are not one and not many but many in one and one
in many. We are the UNITED,” Seren commanded into the ethereal voids of the hall of
judgement. Before him appeared the spirit of Albert. Then, Alberts spirit swirled into the
Vorpal Sword just as the stars had. And then the spirit of Rose appeared. And then
Felicia. And so on….companion after companion entered the Vorpal Sword and passed
through it into Seren.

Seren stood down on one knee, vibrating with radiant power. Each new soul that joined
with him made him GRow bigger, stronger, smarter, and filled with more life force and
energy. Finally the last soul of his perished friends entered his body. He jumped up,
stood, cried out with his new found power, and then looking forward to the statue,
kneeled down again and said, “Thank you my friends. I will avenge your deaths,”
thanking them for their assistance and sacrifice. And then, including Seren,
All of the spirits merged into one unified being.

“We are ready. We are the UNITED,” the being said. With such GReat power, this new
being, the United, was more deity than person. With the completion of the
transformation, a black elliptical shadow portal had opened in the back of the hall. The
united made its way through the portal.




                                           275
2
7
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]


The United found himself in a room similar in construction to the hall of judgement
entrance. On the left and on the right were statues of beings similar to himself. Deity
level beings. The living creatures were covered in wings, each with hook shaped horns
and beady, black eyes. As the united started moving through the chamber, the two statues
came to life and the first one spoke.

“I am anti-angel,” it hissed.

“I am white-demon,” the other hissed.

“I am the united,” the united said.

“You may not pass through here. We are under strict orders from the three supremes,”
both anti-angel and white-demon said.

“Well I have my own orders,” the united said. The united drew its sword, Culler, a
mechanical sword, made of metal, crystal and stone, enGRaved with sigils and glyphs,
and powered by telectronic circuits through the crystal. The strange sword was shaped
in a manner containing several sharp barb-ike tips yet despite all of this engineering was
as light and quick to use as a rapier. Another thing the united was able to do was its most
miraculous power. The united could call upon any ability or magical power of any of
those spirits that contributed to it. The united was able to call upon, for example, the
night elf magic of Cindy Symphona, as well as the Techno Knight powers of Lord
Legend, leader of the Techno Knights.

But it was not just a conglomeration of abilities that made the united powerful. These
individual abilities now combined had produced more powerful, almost unwieldy,
abilities, skills, and magical powers. One such spell was Phlair.

The united launched the power of Phlair at the two winged demigods. The mystic fire of
Phlair burst from the ether and funneled particle after particle of antimatter into the hearts
of anti-angel and white demon. After a few blasts of Phlair the two were weakened and
crawling upon the floor of the hall. The UNITED slipped his blade between their skulls,
and the headless bodies of the anti-angel and white demon turned back to harmless stone.
The United opened the doorway into the next room of the Hall of Judgement.

Seren entered the next room. Here he found three prism crystals, the prisms about equal
to the height of a man. As soon as he arrived, three spirits in the form of twinkles entered
the room and occupied the prisms. The prisms shattered, revealing the three supremes
like three cocoons that had shattered.




                                             276
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     7
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 7



“I am Doom.”
“I am Destruction.”
“I am Chaos.”

Chaos takes the shape of an elden white, poisonous, thunder dragon, destruction takes the
form of an ancient wizard, and doom takes the shape of a powerful demon. The United
fights them, the battle isn’t quite fair, the three supremes against the one united. When the
three were finally dispatched, their spirits fled the artificial bodies into the next room.
The United enters the next room, to find Emperor Blade kneeled down before an ancient
altar made of marble and GRanite, covered in crystal shards.

“Welcome Seren. I guess this is the final act,” Blade said.

Seren appears for a moment out of the United.
“You have killed my friends, you ruined my home, you destroyed my planet. There will
be no forgiveness for you,” Seren said and returned into the United.

“Verryyyyyyy Wellllll!” The Emperor roared. The three stray supreme spirits entered
into his body, soul, and mind. Energy roared around him and Blade GRew into a massive,
powerful dragon. The dragon Ruin.

The United battled the dragon Ruin and destroyed it as easily as it destroyed the Three
Supremes. With its destruction, a magical pulse was let loose, and the entire Hall of
Judgement began to lose stabilization and collapse inwards. The united, still together as
one being, fled the hall of judgement and left the crater. However, the chaos that was
occurring now was on a global level. The balane of good and evil had been altered once
again, and the world was unsettled.




                                            277
2
7
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

Meglapolis and the Space Time Dungeon

Out of nowhere Eiedos appeared. “United, GRab my hand. I’m taking you up to the sky,
to Serenity. The surface is unstable. If you stay here you will die,” Eiedos said.
Seren took Eiedos hand and they vanished and reappeared at the edge of the Island of
Serenity. Seren looked downwards, over the island edge. Below the four elemental
islands in the corner of the world began to crumble into a black void. The ocean
bellowed, its waves rising to super human heights and crashing deeper than ever had
before, more than ever had been conceived.

“What is happening Eiedos?”

“It will be easier to show you….” said the demigod.

The world around Seren was whisked away momentarily. Then a new world put in place.
Before him he saw his home planet Terra, but it was different. There was much less
water. And standing before him was a man made of metal, supported by beams and
girders and struts so that the massive metal man would not fall and crush anyone. Its head
penetrated through and past the clouds, its arms were like small continents.

“All of us in the world had constructed him as a joint effort, partly as a sign that we could
have peace between nations,” Eiedos said.

“What is it? What does it do?”

“Simple. It is a mech. But it is the largest and most powerful mech ever constructed. Not
necessarily meant for war although it could be reproGRammed…. It was a sign that the
wars between nations were over. As for what does it do? It is a vessel, a ship, that would
allow us to explore the depths of our universe,” said Eiedos.

“So, where is it now?”

Eiedos whisked the world around away again, like sweeping away a cape. Now Seren
saw Techno Knights, thousands of them, all across the world conducting the Rite of
Sealing at the same time. Beads of sweat rolling down the sides of their faces, teeth
clenched, pouring out their all to seal this device away. They started turning to stone, one
after the other. There were only a few knights left, Samuel was there, and so was Legend.

“Why did they seal it?”

“It was the last thing sealed away. Its power was too immense. The magical core installed
in it could be used to completely annhilate the world twenty times over. War had broken
out again, and every side feared the use of it against their opposition.”



                                            278
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    7
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 9

“What was it called?”

“Meglapolis.”

“And why did you show me all of this?”

“Because even though you defeated Blade as the dragon Ruin, you simply drained his
power. He may no longer take the form of Ruin, but your father has amassed much power
inyour journey to here and he is at the point now where breaking the seal on Meglapolis
has become somewhat a trivial thing.”

“And that is what is happening now?” asked Seren.

“Yes. If anyone can defeat your father and save his soul it is you Seren. Meglapolis is
almost risen. The Emperor will try and use its power core, most likely he will try to
absorb it into him, so he has even more magical strength. Shut the mech down. Now
Seren, your powers have come close to rivaling mine, especially as the United. I trust in
you,” Eiedos said. Seren found himself whisked away once again by Eiedos to an island
in the ocean. Not far off shore the right foot of Meglapolis hovered over the water.

Seren transformed into the United and flew over the water to the foot of Meglapolis. The
Emperor had armed its defense and attack systems. The United had to dodge arcs of
electricity, criss-crossing lasers, photon beams, missles, and virtually every other form of
attack one could think a robot taller than a mountain could unleash. But Seren as the
United was nothing to be trifled with. The power he had gained from the others had made
their sacrifice worthwhile. Not only had the scales been tipped in their favor, they had
been tipped almost all the way over.

Seren was five minutes away from reaching the top of the mech when Blade ordered the
Mech to perform on all out onslaught on the planet Terra. Floating, high above in space
on the shoulder of the Mech, with Tech Demital on the other shoulder, the Mech became
a destroyer of worlds, unleashing wide-spread anti-matter beams, destroying mountain
ranges and cities in an instant. The United had finally made it to the top and settled to
floating before the face of Meglapolis when the last beam struck Terra. The planet had
already GRown unstable. With the last beam strike it split into three down its seams and
shattered into a cloud of dust.

The United floated in front of Blade and Tech Demital.

“Ohhhhhh….my son, my son. You cannot understand how good this power feels…the
waves of energy, even deep inside my bones…” Blade said.

Above Blade, three small crystals were tethered to him.




                                            279
2
8
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Oh yes, those are the crystallized remains of the Supremes that you killed. They are
more of a nuisance than anything. The power core of this mech is amazing…I know now
why it took the life of almost every Techno Knight to seal it. Mwa ha! Amazing!”

“Blade! You have gone mad! You destroyed our planet! For what reason? I cannot go
along with your plans any longer,” Tech said.

“Ha! Fine then! Leave! Good luck breathing without your planet, weak fool.” Blade said.

Tech turned towards an asteroid cluster nearby, his oxygen spell fading.

“I am leaving this place, follow is you dare my son,” said Blade. He turned into a
twinkle and then a worm hole appeared around him sucking him in. And he was gone.
The wormhole still open. Tech Demital was floating, trying to propel himself towards the
asteroid cluster.

“Tech,” said Seren from the United. Demital turned to speak.

“Yes?”

“I do not want to see you die. Come with me. I am following him into that wormhole.”

“What’s the purpose?”

“He’s my father. I haver to. And Tech, I know you were attached to our planet, Terra.
Maybe with the both of us we can somehow bring it back, and undo what Blade did.”

“Maybe we can. I’ll come along.”

Explosions and temporal distortions had cleared around the wormhole. Eiedos slipped out
of nothingness and into somethingness and nodded towards Seren.

“ConGRatulations Seren. I knew one day this would come. You and I are equal in power.
As well as him,” Eiedos looked over to Tech Demital and nodded his head. “So, you have
decided to assume your responsibility and join the side of the right, Prince of the Night
Elves,” said Eiedos. Seren looked inquisitively at Eiedos about the title. “Another tale,
for another adventure Seren,” Eiedos said.

In front of the trio the instability in time and space had calmed, a nebulous fog had
gathered around them, lighting the dark depths of outer space. In front of them, in the red
nebulous energy, and single blue flame flickered, enflamed by some invisible substance,
and around it flares of gold and silver danced.




                                           280
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     8
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

“Come, ahead of us is the entrance to the most forbidden and horrid depths of Bimia
Triangle. We, in Eiedon, call it the Space Time Dungeon,” said Eiedos and he, Seren, and
Tech Demital entered the blue flame. Its soft baby blues and sharp navies engulfed them,
encompassing all around them.

The world cleared in front of them. Membranous tunnels tugging at them, this way and
that, as they were transported through the different knocks and crannies that lie in
between the folds of our universe. Occasionally a tunnel membrane would spit them out
into something that appeared to be space but just quite wasn’t. Sometimes the laws of
physcics would be different and they would find themselves seeing GRavity or watch as
electricity started whirling into twirling pools. Sometimes they would come across
fragments of worlds, asteroids with ruins of unknown, ancient, cultures who had perished
agaes ago or ages into the future. It was hard to be sure. Occasionally, the hardiest of life
forms had been able to survive off of moon dust and light, mostly creatures biologically
related to plants. Some intelligent, some like beasts, but mostly all agGRessive.

Seren, Eiedos, and Tech continued onwards, Eiedos on the trail of Blade through use of
his higher sense of clairvoyance alone along with whatever other clues they could gather.
They had begun to reach a point in the Space Time Dungeon where the membrances
supporting universes in the multiverse had started to GRown more scarce and they had
begun encountering more more stable structures, such as islands, buildings, and more
terra-like plant and animal life. Finally they found a cleft in the membrances of the
mulitverses hanging over their heads, pulsing photons and electrons through the strings of
spacetime. The membrances had parted to show a massive asteroid, riddled with tunnels.

“Amazing. I have never explored the Space Time Dungeon to this extant. I wonder what
could be on that asteroid? It is almost large enough to be a moon. And where could it
have come from?” said Eiedos.

“I sense him much closer now Seren. I think we should explore the asteroid,” said Tech.

The three flew to the asteroid and touched their feet down to its week GRavity. The
asteroid was honeycombed, riddled with tunnels leading this way and that in seemingly
no sensical order. Finally after a while, Tech shouted, “Look here. It is a teleporter. Do
you think it works?”

Eiedos waved his hand over the teleporter and it energized. “Surely your father has been
here Seren. We must follow.”

Eiedos, Seren, and Tech materialized upon GRound made of lava rock and charred earth.
Surrounding them were flames burning with no source. Tech Demital leapt into the aiar
to see beyond the flames, then landed.




                                            281
2
8
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“Phew. Hot. But look ahead! There is a desert ahead after the fire plain. And it loked like
there are Desert SinkThorns living there.”

“SinkThorns?” Seren asked.

“Creatures that live in the tunnels underneath sandy regions like deserts. And, in this
case, there are a lot of dead ones laying in the dunes, meaning somebody came through
and killed them. Let’s hurry,” said Tech. and he was right. Beyond the scorching fires
the lava rock broke up into fine sand. Whirlpools abounded throughout the sand, many
filed with dead creatures that must have been the SinkThorns Tech was talking about.

“Come here. Dive down into this dead SinkThorn’s pit. Blade’s tracks lead up to the pit
and disappear…” said Tech.

At the bottom of the pit was a mirror shaped energy portal. All three, free falling from
GRavity, entered the portal and soon found themselves somewhere else.

Seren, Eiedos, and Tech Demital were bound within bubbles made of the temporal
membrane they had passed near earlier.

“Ugh..what is this stuff?” Seren asked.

“The temporal membrane. It keeps you from altering history during time travel or when
coming in contact with another multiverse,” Eiedos said. “It looks like that portal has
taken us to some important point in Terra’s history for some reason,” Eiedos said.

“Look below, I think that is the island that the race of imp creatures lived on,” Seren said.

“It looks like they are being attacked by a fleet of ships,” said Eiedos.

“Yeah, the look like Domon ships. Wait….check that out!”, said Tech.

Whirlpools started to surround the attacking fleet. The Imps had used their powers to
manipulate stone to alter the ocean floor and suck in the armada. As the ships started to
sink, suddenly Seren felt he was starting to float towards the scene. Eiedos and Tech felt
it as well.

“No…we are being sucked into this point of history? Why?” asked Eiedos.

They and their membrane encasements were pulled down to the island, and flew through
the charred remains of the Imp’s City and their King’s Castle.

Suddenly the world flickered around them and they found themselves inside a castle.




                                             282
                                                                                       2
                                                                                       8
                                                                      [FANTASY SAGA M] 3

“Are we being given the opportunity to change history?” asked Seren.

“I believe so…” said Eiedos.

The three found themselves inside Doom Castle.
“I have always wondered what secrets Doom Castle could hold, its entrance has been
forever sealed to me and those I know,” Seren said.

“To us as well,” said Tech.

“Not to I. Seren, go into the hall of swords in front of you before the time shear closes
and we are brought back into Bimia. This is the only way to enter Doom Castle. Draw the
sword in the hall of swords and come back as soon as you can,” said Eiedos.

Seren opened the doors of the hall of swords in Doom Castle. In front of him was a
gleaming sword, ancient in making, engulfed in the powers of magic, of the lore of elves,
of the elder wisdom of dragons, and of the powerful technology of the keepers. Seren
draw the sword. On it was enscribed the words,

“To judge a spirit rightfully is to judge the spirit by its works.”

On the other side of the blade was enscribed the word F’sla’lor, translated it means “The
Sword of Fantasies.”

The room and world melted away and Seren, Tech Demital, and Eiedos were floating
again in space. A specter in the distance, glimmering in it s glow, slowly and GRacefully
floated towards them. The specter split into several specters, still gleaming, They soon
found that they were looking up on Bimia Crystal. However, it had been shattered by
some unknown force.

Seren flew over to the foggy remains of the Crystal. “Eiedos, can we heal it?”

“With the three of us…I don’t know, we can try.”

Eiedos, Tech Demital, and Seren Clef placed their hands upon the shattered crystal, the
shatterd life, and began to pray. They felt their souls rejoice, and the crystals GRew hot
and into liquid, but the repair was failing. Seren knew what he had to do. He called upon
the power of the United. Spirits like flares came from all around and entered his body.
GRown strong, he used the healing power of all the souls who had given themselves to
him for strength, all of those who had made a sacrifice, along with Eiedos and Tech
Demital. The liquid puddles of crystal began to merge with each other, and then out of
the large, central puddle, a beautiful, icy fogged crystal GRew, filled with the life energy
of the universe and Bimia itself. The three placed their hands at their sides.




                                              283
2
8
4   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“I thank three noble warriors. Without my presence here in the land outside of your
universe, there would be no person to monitor and keep the laws of the universe in
check.”

As the crystal was speaking, a small spinning shadow behind the crystal had appeared.
By the time the crystal had completed its thanks, the shadow had GRown to the size of
the crystal. Out of the shadow emerged Blade.

“Ah ha! Thank you for doing my dirty work,” said Blade.

“Stay back!” the three announced.

“I’m sorry. But I am going to do the exact opposite.”

Blade placed his hand on the newly healed crystal and the shadows from behind him
filled it, flowing in like fumes into an empty chamber. With the crystal’s alignment
turned to darkness and evil. Blade opened his mouth and from it a ghastly, vacumous,
wind sucked the crystal’s energy into his body. Energy and energy flowed in, until the
crystal was no more. Blade had transformed.

“I have become a crystal knight, just as the old tales spoke of, I have absorbed the
temporal crystal of Bimia, and now I am even stronger your god, M’sra! Mwa ha h. What
should I change about this world….,” said Blade.

“What are we to do Eiedos?” Seren asked hurridly.

“We fight him any way we can. Contain him if possible, kill him otherwise,” said Eiedos.

Halfway through the combat with Blade as the Crystal Knight, Blade could tell he was
being defeated.

“You mortals. You are insignificant. I will stamp you out. In Sandre I too learned how to
transform into one of the elden, the dragons. I AM TALISMAN.” Blade said as his body
tore his armor and his muscles buldged as he GRew, story after story, heavy thick
leather0-ike wings batting back and forth.

Finally, the United, Eiedos, and Tech defeated Talisman….exhausted, panting on one
knee, the emperor/dragon turned to the three with asnarl on his face.

“Now, I will not die to fools such as yourselves. I will take on the form that I have been
saving and stealing energy for all of this time. The power to fully ascend, to transform
from man to god..”




                                            284
                                                                                     2
                                                                                     8
                                                                    [FANTASY SAGA M] 5

Blade as Talisman, lowered his head. “Now, attack!” yelled Tech. Tech stabbed his
sword towards Blade but was thrown back by some sort of force field.
Blade’s eyes turned to albino pink, with white pupikls. His dragon scales turned from a
deep brown to yellow and white. More scales, crystal like, unsheathed themselves , frost
colored white and blue, like daggers emerging from his flesh. His face elongated and he
begame more man and dragon than dragon or man. His clawed fingers GRew long,
longer than normal for a dragon or human. Two transparent, dragon shaped butterfly like
wings spread across his back and then folded in to cover his front. He stood erect, fog,
frost, and electricity arcing about.

“My name is no longer Blade. My name is Cristalys. I have combined the power of every
soul I’ve stolen, every live I’ve destroyed to absorb their power, every earth gift taken
from Deko reactors and infused into my body, and all of the power Sandre had given
me….everything at once, compressed into the tiniest of energy cores and infused into my
own very heart. My name is Cristalys and you, Seren, are my enemy,” said the
transformed Blade.

Cristalys leapt like an ape through space onto a nearby floating chunk of rock. His pupils
a deep red he raised one hand, whirlwinds of fire swung around the space they floated in.
Cristalys held his hands close, and GRowing in between his palms was a ball of blue
neon plasma, GRowing and GRowing with every second. Eiedos and Tech tried to deal
blows to him while he GRew the plasma, but to no avail.

Cristalys leapt again, ape like, until his face was bearing down on Seren’s face. Seren
could feel the mist of his breath, the warm hair coming from his mouth. Cristalys took
Seren by the throat, and raise him into the air, “You will be my first kill,” and dropped
Serena again back into space.

Eiedos and Tech Demital had been thinking of it for a little while now, while they
watched their friend Seren/United being crushed over and over again by Cristalys. Eiedos
was the first to speak it, “Would it be reversible?”

“I’m not sure. I’m not even sure if Seren’ s condition is,” Eiedos said.

“We can’t let him get away again….we have to do something. We are too weak by
ourselves.”

“I know…if we merge with Seren we will easily be at the level of a deity, we could easily
take out Cristalys or any other foe that come our way. But…” Eiedos said.

“Yes. We never may have individuality again,” said Tech.




                                            285
2
8
6   [FANTASY SAGA M]

The Responsibility that comes with Freedom


Seren was battling the beast Cristalys as well as he could. It did not help that the being
underneath all of those shells of magical power and darkness and pain and vice and sin
was his father, Sonon, gentle farmer who ruled over an island in the sky. Cristalys had
pinned Seren against an asteroid, beating him old fashioned style, fist after fist to his face
and stomach. Seren’s head lay back on the rock, bashed and bloody.

Eiedos and Tech had tried to intervene, but found that Cristalys had placed a force field
around Seren and himself, one that neither of them could break.

Seren tried to take the advantage. He reached for the “Fantasy Sword” but found it as
useless as a butter knife and tossed it to the side for the time being. His setback was that
every blow struck with the Vorpal Sword seemed to pass right through the god-beast,
Cristalys.

Cristalys began to use his spiked, jagged crystals that lined his body and limbs to tear up
Seren’s skin and dig into his flesh. Seren was lieing mutilated, bloody, and weak on the
GRound when he lost consciousness.

While Seren slept, Cristalys decided to attack the next on his list, Eiedos. But before he
could strike, a temporal shear opened up, and from it appeared M.

“What are you doing here?” Tech asked.

“I am here to save my old other self,” said M.

“It’s too late, we can’t stop Blade,” said Seren, weakly.

“It is important that we defeat this god-beast and move on to more important matters at
hand,” said M. Meanwhile, Cristalys was GRowing irratible at the intrusion. “You know
what you have to do. Have Seren use the Rite of Joining that he learned in the Hall of
Judgement and join with the United. Should you do so, your power will exceed that of
Cristalys and possibly even Ms’ra, though it would be hard to tell since He lives outside
of our multiverse.

“Very well then. If we must do it,” said Eiedos and Tech. They called out to Seren,
wounded, and hardly conscious. He heard the garbled words, like listening with an earful
of water, clutched the jewel that hung down from his neck and softly spoke the words,
“Most Holy Rite of Joining,” then clenched his eyes for the onslaught of power into his
body and soul. He began to hear echoes of voices, “I have sacrificed myself for the
GReater good,” echoed Eiedos, and “I guess we all have our time” echoed Tech. The rush
of power to Seren was intense and he fell to the floor, almost face first. The dragon blood


                                             286
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    8
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 7

in him as this new powerful being was intense. From behind a long, spiked tail GRew and
danced about, from his back burst two powerful dragon wigs, his skin turned to powerful,
armored claws, his hair GRew long and red, his pupils black and his iris a hazel color.
He turned M, who had been watching the entire transformation.

“You. You are him now aren’t you. You are the being you were destined to become,” M
said.

“Yes. My name is Palastine.”

“Then we are ready.”

Palastine and M strode by the paralyzed Cristalyn , Palastine casually slipping a dagger
through its scales and armor and into the flesh. Cristalyn slid to the GRound into a puddle
of blood. Palastine and M turned to face the god-beast, not so godly anymore.

“So, what is the plan?” asked Palastine.

“The Vilest of the Foul Demons, Temptatoin, the one who brought the comet to strike
Terra instead of its correct course into the sun….He’s our challenge. He has somehow
planted one of his eggs into the sun.”

The wounded Cristalys had changed from back into Blade, but the gashing wound was
still in place. Blade was dying and began to slowly, painfully, talk…

“Seren, if you are in there, listen to your dieing father. Over the years men have called
me just by the name Blade. I received that name when I awoke in Terra’s age of magic.
For years my amnesia from the trip through Bimia was terrible, I focused on my one and
only memory, that of my son, Seren. While I was travelling through Bimia Triangle, a
demon, somehow reaching through the temporal membrane from one universe into ours,
possessed me. It slowly lead me off the right track….at first it was just to gain more help
in the search for my son, then I desired power to find a way to get back to Serenity, and
so on. Until it spiraled out of control. “

“I was anGRy, I wanted to destroy the Master for the life and time he stole from me when
I lost you. I thought I had lost you for good that day I awoke on the shore near Zig in the
time of the 1000 year war. Seren the demon Temptation made me into who I am and was.
If you want revenge, revenge me as well and slay Temptation,” said Blade. “Good bye
son, if there is a heaven…please beg them to open the gates for me when you get there.”

Palastine was quiet. M looked towards him.

“What’s the plan M?” Palastine asked.




                                            287
2
8
8   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“We kill the cosmic demon spawn of Temptation nesting in our sun before he is fully
GRown. Then we travel to the demon world Arcanna, where you killed Lortd
Nebuchadnezzar and slay the bastard Temptation for good.”

Temptation and M leapt off the asteroid they had been standing upon and flew towards
the sun that shed light on the moderately sized solar system of which Terra was a part.
The closer they got to the sun, the more detail they could make out of the nest and its egg.

The demon spawn drew energy from the sun’s fusion. If the spawn were to hatch
naturally, the sun would go black and the solar system would die. M and Palastine flew
into the sun, through its hot layers, shielded by the god-like powers. At the ore of the sun,
where egg lay, ready to be hatched. A round, red, organic sphere sat in the center, with
red organic tubes stretching from the egg out into the sun itself.

“Those must be its embyllical cord,” said Palastine.

“Let’s get closer,” said M.

“There it is, I can see the hellspawn inside the red sphere, it looks uncomfortable. Do you
think it is going hatch?” asked Palastine.

“Yeah, I think so, since we distributed it. It knows we are here to kill it. Get ready!” said
M.

The demon awoke, its yellow eyes penetrating the red, translucent sac. Bearing its claws,
it tore through the flesh that bound it, shook itself off, and squared off againast Palastine
and M.

“It’s still a young one Palastine. Should be an easy kill,” said M.

“Ha! You are always saying that!”, Palastine’s voice echoed with the words of Seren.

“What is that? Hey, there is a comet coming this way!” Palastine told M.

“Perfect. Watch a pro,” M boasted. M focused all of his energy and opened a negative
vortex, drawing the comet towards them. Once it was within reasonable distance and
slowed enough, M cast a spell and propelled the comet into the stomach of the hellspawn.
The hellspawn roared in pain.

“Palastine, remember that sword?”

“Yeah, the useless one.”

“It isn’t useless. It just wasn’t meant of the United. It is meant for you.”


                                             288
                                                                                  2
                                                                                  8
                                                                 [FANTASY SAGA M] 9


Palastine drew the Fantasy Sword. He swirled it around in front of him, back to front and
vice versa.

“Drive it into the heart of that demon-spawn,” M said.

Palastine sped full speed forward towards the Demon Spawn, who tried to bat him away
with his claws and torch him with some well placed flames. Finally, he drove the Fantasy
Sword into the creatures heart. The Demon Spawn bulked and cried out in pain, and then
vanished, engulfed in flames.

“Don’t worry. Its dead. That’s how they die. Born in flames anad die in flames,” M said.

“Now what?” Palastine said.

“Now Arcanna and Temptation.”




                                           289
2
9
0   [FANTASY SAGA M]



Bite the Hand that Feeds

Arcanna was a world without a sun. Always dark, even starlight always shadowed away
by more darkness. The demons tended to live in caverns, mountains, canyons, abysses,
crevasses, pits, and other such places more out of habit than pleasure I assume.

The demon world long ago had been banished from the rest of known universe. For their
crimes, the creatuers of the demon world were to have no contact with any sort of life or
even matter in the known universe. To make matters worse, the people of the planet
Eiedon began a custom, which was carried on by many other nations throughout the
universe, that when their criminals are executed, their soul and its life force was to be
temporarily stored away. Every year, at the new harvest celebration, the magi-tech
experts of Eiedon use their power and skill to channel the stored away souls of the evil
ones into a large chunk of ueridium ore. This, along with special glyphs, arranges all of
the stored souls from their temporary storage into the ore, which is then launched a nd
carefully guided into the sun, where a wormhole is activated to the world of Arcanna, so
that the prisoners are left in the demon world which has no become both a GRaveyard
and prison for those who commit GRave crimes on the planet Eiedos.

The demon temptation, in anger and bitterness of this routine, over a millennia ago,
directed one of the largest ueridum prisoner payloads just far enough off trajectory to
land it not through the wormhole, but into the underdeveloped planet of Terra, causing a
worldwide meltdown. He did this by travelling through the Space Time dungeon and
using as much of his power as he had to slightly knock the comet off course through one
of the temporal protection membranes.

Palastine and M arrived at Arcanna without a hitch. Though there were many lesser
demons who could pose problems in the universe, their problem was with one of the
strongest, who resided in a fortress made of cold GRanite, across a stone bridge to the
north. Here lived the demon Temptation.

They treaded forward and as they crossed the bridge they heard a roar below. Lightning
fast, a massive red beast, tens of stories tall, appeared at their side, from the pit below the
bridge. It was the demon temptation.

Palastine leapt into the air, sword drawn, and lodged the sword into Temptation’s belly,
causing sparks and flame to dance about. M raised his stave in Temptation’s direction,
firing diamonds of ice crystal into Temptation’s eyes and skull. The demon laughed,

“So quick to attack? Can we not work out something less violent?” the demon spoke.

“I have an idea, but you have to keep him distracted” said M to Palastine.



                                             290
                                                                                    2
                                                                                    9
                                                                   [FANTASY SAGA M] 1

M darted to the left of Temptation while Plaastine took the full brunt of his attack.
M spoke into Palastine’s mind, “We are going to have to use our three strongest abilities
at once. I am going to shear space and time and try to pull him into another dimension.
Meanwhile, you have to do two things. You have to try and cast both Rite of Sealing and
Rite of Joining at the same time. Seal Temptation away into the Fantasy Sword, that’s
what it was made for. Once he’s sealed, or almost completely sealed, I’m sending him
through the shear without any magical protection or energy shield. The particle shock
should destroy him, its like diving headfirst into a black hole, complete annihilation.
Nod when you are ready.”

Palastine continued to dodge blows from Temptation to the left and right then, glancing
to his left at M, nodded his head.

“Go!” M said.

“Rite Sealing! Rite of Joining!” Seren screamed into the Arcannian wind that had been
biting away at his face. Two glyps lit up, one for each rite, one on the left of his chest
where his heart was, the other on his forehead where the third eye would be. The glyphs
jumped off of Palastine and floated through the air and landed on Temptation, the magic
binding him to Seren in Palastine’s commands. Temptation’s body began to whirl and
diffuse, changing shape and swirling like paint down a drain.

“Shear!” M said. A crack in the sky appeared and continued tearing downwards.
Suddenly the tear burst open, revealing neither black nor white beyond, but an
imperceptible color of smoky nothingness. The vacuum from the shear was perceptible
however and pulled strongly. Temptation had swirled down in a sort of reverse genie in
the bottle effect and now had taken possession of and had been sealed within, the Fantasy
Sword. Palastine GRabbed the sword by its hilt and walked it over to spacetime shear, let
his hand loose, and watched as the vacuum sucked up the sword. The sword shot into the
shear, back into nothingness, and in the distanece between the torn walls of the shear, a
white explosion where the sword had been crushed from particle shock, and then
nothingness. M stepped to the side and with a wave of his hand, closed the shear.

“Let’s go home,” M said.

“What home do we have left to go to ?” asked Palastine.

“How about planet Eiedos. They should be able to separate you so you aren’t some
conglomerate being the rest of your life,” said M.

“And then what?”

“Live.”




                                           291
2
9
2   [FANTASY SAGA M]

“And you M?”


“Keep on going on….keep on saving the world, one step at a time.,” said M and he
vanished, traveling beyond the speed of light, into hyperspace, and off to another part of
the galaxy.


               For I know the plans I have for you, declares the
               LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give
               you a future and a hope.




The End




                                              292
                                                                            2
                                                                            9
                                                           [FANTASY SAGA M] 3


Special Thanks
The Time Phantasy Project

Special Thanks To:

Alan Brommer (Early Character Design and Gameplay Consultation)
Brad (trekie) (Early C Code Consult)
Jake Matters (Early Game Concept Art Consult)


Amanda Hitz (Early Concept Art Consult)
William Doan (Concept Art Consult)
Benjamin Sawyer (Concept Art Consult)




                                          293

				
DOCUMENT INFO
Shared By:
Categories:
Tags:
Stats:
views:3
posted:11/4/2012
language:Unknown
pages:293