The Deceivers are Chosen - Eleyna Part II
A few hours later, Eleyna woke up. The cold cave wall against her neck made her shiver. She rose from her position and looked through the small spy hole. The capital of Tripoli was completely demolished. A giant piece of rubble. The once most glorious city of Cilarion was now destroyed. The evil power of Beliar was spreading like a malignant, merciless disease. Doom was upon Cilarion.
The hordes of the evil Naeglim creatures that had stood on the field earlier were now gone and Eleyna decided it would be all right to leave her hideout.
She walked through the ghost ruins of the capital. Tears built up when she saw the scorched and destroyed houses of her past friends. The buzzing sound of flies sucking and feeding on the carcasses of human bodies would continue haunting her in her nightmares throughout her life. She hardly believed her eyes. Slain, pierced, destroyed, bloodied bodies covered the city. Men, women and children alike lay everywhere. All dead. Crows and other necrophagous animals screeched and began to gather.
How could anyone do anything like this? Why was there war in the world? Why would anyone wish to kill another creature? Thoughts swirled through her young mind. In a day she had been forced to grow up and take care of herself. No thoughts of unfairness passed through her mind. Only questions of ‘why’. Acceptance had already dawned on her. She inhaled the burnt air. Each death was now graven within her heart and mind as memories.
She realized she had lost her doll when she had ran to the cave. Silence screamed in her mind as she felt desolately alone. The last memory of her father was lost now.
She stood on a white rock of what had once been part of the glorious, famous Tripoli wall. Endless fields and pastures filled the landscape as far as the eye could reach. Behind her stood the massive, guarding mountains. Some smoke polluted a path upwards from some farms in the distance of the fields. Naeglim had been let loose. She sighed heavily and then walked down towards the open fields. She did not know where to go, but she felt a guiding hand leading her southwards towards the land of Merceana. She knew about the country from stories and myths but had never been there. Now she had a destination and a goal. All that remained was to survive.
As she continued through the rubbles she spotted people. Six youths at about the age of sixteen stood in rags and had been chained together by large, black, metal chains. Eleyna crept silently towards them. She hid behind pieces of rubble only fifteen meters away from them. The Deirm’s powerful voice could easily be heard. At least she thought it was a Deirm. She had heard about them before. Everyone feared the Deirm. The king himself and his strongest men trembled in terror at the word ‘Deirm’. Curiosity called on her to peek. She carefully gazed through a small gap between a few rocks.
The Deirm was clad in a pitch-black armor with a giant two-handed broadsword on his back. His black cape fluttered slightly from the wind. He had no hair on his head and his black eyes with white pupils seemed more piercing than a human’s. His nose was sharp and quite large, Eleyna thought to herself. He was not very handsome at all. Eleyna knew why they were feared though. The Deirm were stronger than any normal man and they never tired. Their energy was endless. Funneled by the Tempter himself.
She looked at the six youths. They seemed tired, beat, resigned and angry. Hatred, fury and hunger for power bulged in their eyes. One girl seemed only tired though. She looked like she had lost all hope and ultimately lost herself too. She had flourishing, black hair running almost as far down as to her waist. It looked a bit fluffy and soft Eleyna thought. She could see a slight tear dropping down her cheek.
“You have been offered positions of great glory and power,” the Deirm snarled. “Lord Beliar has decided that you six shall become his very own apprentices. He will give you riches, glory and powers beyond your imagination if you follow him. You have a choice though. You could either let me take you to him or deny him and die. I of course would be delighted if you choose the second option. Removing your heads would take mere seconds.” The Deirm held out his great sword and pulled his thumb along it. It pleased him to see the fear in the humans’ eyes. A trickle of his black blood now ran down the sword. “I don’t see how he can use six youths like you. But orders are orders. What say you?”
“We will serve Lord Beliar,” said a short haired, blond youth. His eyes glistened like red rubies and Eleyna recognized him. It was Jacinth. The troublesome boy who with his two friends had bullied her brother. He had always been mean and scheming. Adrithon had been badly beaten once when he was walking home alone in the evening, having suddenly been attacked by the three in an alley. His eyes had been black for weeks and two ribs had been broken.
Eleyna had never thought he was this evil though. The six of them had just pledged their souls to Beliar. Beliar! The one who was the reason for the death of their families and the destruction of the capital. It seemed inconceivable.
“Good. Our lord will be pleased," the Deirm said grimly, with slight dissapointment in his voice. The chains were quickly removed and then they were given clothes and horses. “We ride to Ashbel.”
Copyright © Danai Gabre, 2008-11-21