Pelli-Kefaro: The Empty Throne

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Aelin's Journal: First Entry
573 EOMag, Third Day of Antetenan

I have found myself thinking about those events a decade ago quite often as of late. They haunt my dreams, both asleep and waking.

I had merely laid to rest within the security of the manor, and when I next opened my eyes, what I saw was not the familiar surroundings of my home, but of a place entirely foreign and impossible. I had no clue what was going on. How would I? A child of sixteen, taken from her home in the middle of the night, without so much as a clue. To make matters worse, my young sister, Lynette, had been taken as well. I was afraid. I was confused. I was angry. We were not the only ones taken, the large room that we found ourselves in was lined with beds, all filled by people equally as confused as us.

Before we even got a chance to catch our bearings from our half-asleep state, we found ourselves being herded by a group of peculiar gnomes speaking nonsense about a god-king’s degree. Where we found ourselves next was even more impossible than the last.

A city that seemed to glow in the colors of gold and gems, unlike anything I had ever seen before and surely not of our lands. A plaza lay before us, and with it the crowd of stolen people grew exponentially, some were terrified, but others seemed enthralled by the scene before us. That is when we met Magus. He seemed younger than I, but he had his wits about him and seemed to be trying to make sense of what was happening. When I mentioned what I had overheard the gnomes saying about the “god-king”, it seemed to set off some memory but before I could get an answer from him, he was nearly swept away by a stampeding crowd. Through my own reflexes, I somehow was able to grasp him and remove him from the flow of bodies before he was lost to us.

He explained that the city seemed to be that of the ancient God-King Mandoregnas, Ulcanthias. The city had been lost nearly five centuries prior, when the God-King vanished.

It was then that the worst part, the part that haunts me the most occurred. The God-King himself stood before us with his twelve Magisters in attendance. I still can make little sense of what happened there that day, but when I awoke again I had returned home, as did Lynette, although in much worse shape emotionally than I.

That night was when I decided I needed to become stronger, to defend my family and people.

I had nearly forgotten a lot of what happened that night, sporadic memories and dreams would occasionally plague me. Lynette never mentioned it after that, so whether she had truly forgotten or merely buried it like I, is lost to me.

Last month however, it all came back to haunt me in full force. Lynette had been ransomed by low lives while she had been outside the manor. We managed to track them down, but to my utter surprise, when we arrived she had been freed safe and sound. By Magus no less.

I did not recognize him at first, the boy that not ten years prior had seemed younger than I, now stood before me grizzled and older by decades. Were it not for that distinctive scar and his sense of familiarity, I would not have known who he was.

And so here we are. Tomorrow we depart for the Dragon’s Maw. Magus had contacted us requesting a favor in exchange for his deeds last month and I am honor bound to comply, though I would likely have gone regardless. I would be leaving alone if I had the choice, but Lynette insists on going as well to clear her own debt in the matter, and there was no swaying her decision. Even father could not forbid her to do something once she was set on it, and it was everything I could to convince him that I would be sufficient protection and not to send half the city guard along with us. I do not know what Magus has in store for us, only that we need to meet him at the Drake’s Tooth tavern. I only hope that whatever he needs will not place Lynette in danger.

As of this writing it is late, and we depart early. For now I will put these thoughts aside and attempt to rest.

Aelin Rowe,
First Daughter of Viscount Rowe of Acnecia

Journal of a Sardinian Hermit I
A Return from the Wild

Kreskwen has been pestering me as of late. Disturbing me in the middle of my meditations, and interrupting me during my searches in the archives. She wishes me to start journaling my thoughts and actions during my stay.

“In such a short time you’ve become a legendary member of this monastery! All the younglings dream to be as great a fighter or just an ounce as wise as you!”

I doubt this is her real reason for bothering me so. But still, if it will afford me a bit more peace, I can take some time to record what has transpired since my return.

A Return from the Wilds

My passage through the bustling town on the way up to the monastery I used to call home was… different. The town was practically the same as I remembered it, busy with people in the market, each preoccupied with their errands. This was my closest interaction with other intelligent beings in several years. Before i decided to return, the most interaction I received was in watching fishing vessels pass by my little island. Mind you, flagging one of those boats down was not easy. Apparently, around the same time i took up residence on that small stretch of land, certain fisherman started spreading tales of a phantom haunting that wretched strip of sand. “Wretched” being their word to describe my home, not mine.
But anyway, I passed through the sturdy gates at the entrance and was even more pleasantly surprised to see that even less here had changed. A group of fellow monks were training in the center of the complex, and i found Master Balthazar teaching someone on how to manifest the breath, with little success mind you. Our reunion was warm, and as we walked he filled me in on the happenings since i departed and described my return as well timed. A trio of emissaries from the continent were set to arrive shortly, and a competition with the neighboring Peridoma monastery was scheduled that evening. Little did I know this would start of a dark path, with a depth that I could not fathom.

So much happened that night, where to begin… I suppose with the ambassadors. The ambassadors are three elves from the Elanto Realm: Elowen, Darunia, and Glogar. High, Wood, and drow elves respectively. As for the reason of their visit, i could not get a straight answer from Balthazar, merely that things were “changing”. But that was not even the most disturbing news that evening. Grabezou announced that his monastery was raided by outsiders, then pillaged and burned. And he, and the students that came with him for the festivities the only remaining survivors of the monastery. All of this happening shortly after his own favored pupil nearly hitting me with the full force of his breath attack… Something is wrong about all of this. I’ve never trusted Grabrezu, and I get the feeling he is wary of me as well. The way he responds to any sort of conversation we have is feels full of jealousy. Ever since i had that strange vision years ago…

Remembrance 1

I keep seeing visions.

I keep hearing a voice.

I know who it belongs to, but I don’t know the name.

Both show up usually at night, or when my mind is at its most vulnerable, and they tell me what to do.

I was just woken up. One moment I’m standing before the Astral Sea, and the next I’m standing in a ruined temple. Then the voice tells me to run, and take everyone with me.

The people, the five standing before me. I know them, but I’ve never met them before.

They look different from how I remember them.

Why is this happening? Madisan says she’ll tell me tomorrow. I’m debating if I should ask when she started showing crow’s feet.

That’s probably a bad idea.


Remembrance pt. 2

I have these markings all over my body.

At first it was only one, and I only noticed because Madisan kept staring at my neckline. She says she has no idea what they are, and I’m supposed to believe her.

Over the next few days they appeared in droves, marking every inch of me. It wasn’t until I got the one over my chest that I started hearing the voice.

It told me I needed to speak with the ones who saved my life.

I knew which ones he was talking about. The dwarf spellcaster, the warforged, the sorcerer knight, the half elf bard, and the cleric of that obscure religion. According to Madisan I saved their lives once, and in return they saved mine.

While I’m grateful, I don’t really know how to go about it. Do I simply tell them thanks? That seems barely fitting. Like saying sorry for knocking down a castle wall.

I’ll figure something out I suppose. I’ll give them all the answers I can, but, truth be told, that’s not a lot.

But then again, what else is new?

Remembrance pt. 3

I see it every night now. The ground splitting. The figure in the shadows laughing. The city, with a great church on a hill, and a castle high atop a plateau, sinking into the ground as people scream in agony.

I told this dream to Athos. He tells me it is too manufactured, too overt, to be subconscious. He tells me there is a person who can cast Dream upon anyone they want, as if it were as easy as breathing.

It was then he told me the one behind such dreams: Maloraxis.

He told me I should be wary of these dreams. That I should pay them no heed. And yet, I can’t ignore the feelings of death and misery.

The following day we were summoned to do a job. Message came from Cen’acnes, and immediately my mind recalled the dream. The dream I had where Cen’Acnes was in shambles.

Had the message come from anyone else we’d have only sent Sybelline or Madisan to deal with it. But something of this magnitude needs as many Mendakin as we can muster.

As we headed to the city my thoughts turned to those five I saw in Riverdale. My feelings turned to dread, for I saw them also falling into the darkness as the city crumbled.

I send my prayers to them, in hopes that they are safe, wherever they are.

Remembrance pt. 4

I still find it difficult to process that I have jumped forward in time. Case in point, Sybelline is now older than I, and yet when I saw her last she was barely a scared girl who was carried off by Blights.

Now she has a pact with the fae, and is an accomplished person of her trade. She also does not take well to being called Bella anymore.

I have to keep these things in mind, for a lot can happen in twenty years.

When I last saw Cen’Acnes Lord Ulmana had passed her throne to her eldest, Lord Hectorius Golgatha. General Rusalen was supposed to be scouring the countryside with the Warden of the Heart and Yeshan Vindis, clearing out the Turdak Clan’s roaming pillagers from the Lordship.

Now Rusalen is the Lord, and his brother is nowhere to be found. Yeshan is the warden too. And the once promising area I, apparently, helped build, is now called the slums.

Worst of all, the Lords are meeting with the intent to unite the country. Or further divide it.

As Athos says, this city is ripe for a calamity. And if my dreams are to be believed, it’s only a matter of time.

Remembrance pt. 5

Athos is teaching me how to use these marks. He calls them Sephirots.

I don’t know why, but every day they multiply. Fortunately I can merge them all into one spot, but it is quite painful. Instead I’ll hold them to certain spots throughout my body. That’s less painful.

Reading the journals my old self left behind helps too. He has one he calls “Unity.”

I can’t wait to try that one out.

Remembrance pt.6 & 7

While looking through my journals today I noticed something unusual.

Some of the words are oddly shaped, but done so in a way that implies it was intentional. After studying each letter I realized it was a code. One that led to another. And another.

The code led me to a spot in my bag where I found a pocket dimension. Within it was a singular book. It looked old and worn. Hardly remarkable at all. I don’t know why though, but I feel a weight upon my stomach.

I opened the book today.

The findings in here all deal with the God King and Ulcanthias. There are symbols and maps and codes and words in here that alone would shake the foundations of our world.

With everything in here, the line that struck me the most is found on the inside cover. It was written in the same way as the marks on my body:

If You’re Reading This It Means You Have Been Reborn. Please, No Matter What, Keep What’s In This A Secret. We Will Find Out The Truth.

i write this now at 4 in the morning because I cannot sleep. Tomorrow we arrive in Cen’Acnes, the city in which my dreams repeat its impending doom. Now, with this omen, I can’t help but dread what it all means.

Even worse, I can’t tell anyone about it. Not even Madisan.

Remembrance pt. 8

Cen’Acnes is still a grand city, I’ll give it that. Lily road cuts through the streets with impeccable precision and beauty, all the while accentuating the grand Acnecian architecture that even the most common of houses get to enjoy.

Even better they still serve fried prickles.

The lords have all arrived today, and the town is bustling with festivities. With everything going on today, there is nothing that could ruin my attitude.

I stand corrected.

Apparently a lot less people are happy to see me than I expected.

Though I never guessed it would have come from those five. Madisan says they have a lot on their minds, and for that I shouldn’t take it personal. She also said I could lighten up a bit too.

Yes dear. I’ll get right on that. Right after I prevent what feels like the world from breaking and regain my sanity.

It should be so easy.


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