Twin Sun Series: Musing #1

Twin Sun Series: Musing #1

A Story by buoyantMaureen
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Gredo is attending the Sanctuary of the Void when he hears of voice from his past. The voice of someone he saw die twelve years ago.

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“Gredo.”

The adviser jumped. From within the Sanctuary of the Void came the voice of a person from Gredo’s past, one whose Ghost still haunted him.

When the man who had died twelve years ago-Gredo had seen him die-stepped out from the shadows, the old man collapsed to the floor.

“Gods of Heaven! The Prince!”

“Get to your feet,” said the dead. “There are no Princes here.”

Gredo would not raise his face from the floor. “My Lord, you’re alive?”

“Your lord is not,” the dead said. “I am the Wheel Turner, the Hammer of the Change.”

Like all people in the Capital, Gredo had heard the names but never before had he fathomed that this enemy of the Empire had really been the Crown Prince. A trembling over took the old man’s body as he spoke again, “Forgive me my impudence, my lord. But you are him.”

Steel, cold and unforgiving, pressed into the back of Gredo’s neck.

“Do not prostrate yourself in front of a thief, he will not grant you favor,” demanded the dead. “How do you protest that I am your Prince?”

Gredo felt the tightness of that steel against his neck, hands pressed to the floor riddled with grains of sand from the ceremony that morning. “I know that you are.”

“How would you know? Even an adviser of such high stature as yourself is not allowed to look upon the face of god.”

The point of the weapon slipped down the side of Gredo’s neck, leaving the skin raw and burning. That same point pushed when it reached the skin under Gredo’s chin. “Look. See the visage of the man before you.”

Shaking like a leaf tormented by a storm, Gredo obeyed. Keeping his body low, he craned his neck up.

“Is this the face of god?”

Despite the blade at his neck, Gredo had to looked away. The face! If not the face of a god it would certainly have fit. He had once seen a look such as the dead man’s on a tiger, fierce and immune to kindness. All amplified by a scar dragged across the entirety of his face that turned his expression into one that no human could hope to mimic.

“It is because I have never seen my Prince’s face that I am able to recognize you,” Gredo spoke.

“Oh?”

“You stepped into the Sanctuary of the Void without fear. More impressive still, you stepped out of it.”

“Such a feat can be made by any ignorance-blessed man.”

“You recited the Script,” Gredo said. “I have to believe it is you, my Lord, even if it kills me. There is too much evidence.”

A moment, too long too agonizing, and then the blade was whisked away with a ring on the air. And in a more pardoning voice, the dead man said, “You know your vows, Gredo. But I am not a Prince. I never was. Surely you have heard the stories.”

Gredo’s heart leapt. “Slander! Rumors with no foundations.”

“They are rooted in truth.” His tone was absolute. Like a king’s.

With that, all lingering doubt within Gredo vanished. 

“Now, you should have no reservations speaking to me,” said the deadman. “And I will not speak to your back so, under the mercy of the good gods, get up.”

Obeying, Gredo inched back, but even kneeling, he pointed his eyes at the floor. Above his field of vision was the face that was forever rippled in that scar.

“I do not know what to call you,” Gredo admitted. “If My Lord does not suffice…”

“Don’t call me anything, it is much safer that way. If it confuses you then it was confuse our enemies as well.”

To his amazement, the deadman dropped to the floor as well, sitting on the ceremonial carpet like it was a sitting rug, his legs splayed and casual.

“I need a man, Gredo. A man I can trust inside the Sanctuary.

“But your…” Gredo did not know how to say it without being insulting.

“My brother will not know of our connection.”

 Gredo was no fool; he knew that last sentence had been an order.

The deadman pulled a clothe out from his sleeve and started to clean the blade of his sword though Gredo could not see a flaw on the steel.

“You will still follow all of His Imperial Majesty’s orders, you will beckon when he calls. For all purposes you are still his. But there will come a day when you will have to break your oath to the Crown, when you will have to cause the fall of the Empire and all those who cared for you since the day of your birth. You will give up your station, your life, and possibly that of your family so that the river of Change will be given a clear path.  Can you do this, Gredo?”

It was like the lamp in his chest had just met an oil rag, like the tiny flame had blossomed into a fire; Gredo no longer felt any of the weariness of his brittle bones. He was no longer a twig to be thrashed about in the wake of a storm. Gredo’s inner fire was reaching out, brimming with heat like never before. All because of appearance of this deadman and his terrifying face.

“I am eager for the day, My Lord.”

The deadman's mighty head swung away. He whipped the blade of his sword to one side, the steel singing, then sheathed the weapon with a single stroke.

© 2013 buoyantMaureen


Author's Note

buoyantMaureen
This is a stand alone passage I wrote for the sake of world-building. It is a part of a larger narrative that has not been written. For those that have read Soothsayer, this is the same world but with completely unrelated characters. I thought it was pretty good so I posted it. Reviews will be rewarded with good karma points.

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Added on August 1, 2013
Last Updated on August 30, 2013
Tags: fantasy, void, sword, Emperor, Empire, god, Crown

Author

buoyantMaureen
buoyantMaureen

Philadelphia, PA



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A coward and an INFJ for life who knows that good happens. more..

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