• Introduction

    The sounds from the water dripping echoed through the halls. Caldor looked around carrying his little girl in his arms. It had become a routine for him since Lorena was a baby. Now the girl was to his knee but still wanted to be carried around the cave hallways. Megorin had been his home and now his child’s. Smiling at his little girls smile, Caldor couldn’t help but laugh at how her long ears shook with excitement. Whenever they walked anywhere he noticed that Lorena would get excited. His little girl was his life. For many years Marcia and him had tried to conceive a child and finally on their fifth year of being tied Lorena was born. The miracle child and with that Caldor couldn’t help keep his eyes on her. Her dark blue eyes were like her mothers and her long curly hair was black as coal. She was a smaller version of her mother and he was beginning to notice she had the same attitude as well.
    Feeling as his arm began to fall asleep; Caldor placed his little girl onto the cold stone floor. Seeing her reach for him to pick her up, he laughed as he patted her thick black hair.
    “You are spoiled you know that,” Caldor muttered picking his little girl up again. “Come now, lets go see mommy, she’s probably got dinner ready for us.”
    As he turned back down the hall he began to feel his stomach ache. It was a strange feeling, which he had never felt before. Ignoring it, he simply carried on his way towards his small room, which he shared with his wife and child. Opening the door to his room, Caldor watched as his wife greeted him with a kiss and then without saying a thing took their daughter in her arms.
    “Did you have fun walking with daddy, little one?” Marcia asked seeing her little girl curl up in her arms and begin to sleep. “You make her to tired to eat her dinner almost every night, Caldor. It’s not good for her.”
    “It’s all the cave air, not me.” He answered walking towards the table. “After I eat I’m on watch tonight. So I won’t be in until morning.”
    Hearing Marcia sigh, he knew that he had upset her. It was nearly every night he was working. Most of the day he was off with his daughter or gathering things for their small home. She hardly got to see her husband at all. Looking into his blue eyes, she was able to see he was sorry.
    Patting Caldor’s cheek with her hand, she felt the bristles of his bread beneath her palm. It tickled as the feeling brought a smile to her face. The tangle of black hair was matted with beads. A ritual among Camarns, the beads were to show status and being that Caldor had a head full of beads that meant he was of a high rank. Kissing her husband on the lips, Marcia hurried off to serve him his food. Setting the plate on the table, Caldor noticed something quickly with a glance.
    They were distant, both his wife and child. Shaking his head, he sat to eat his dinner. Forgetting his thought the second his lifted the fork to his mouth.


    The night air tingled the inside of his nose every time he took a breath. It was a quiet night and for some reason Caldor found it easy to nod off. Leaning up against the post, the view below was a mass of black. Listening closely to what was happening below, Caldor could sense movement. Night guards. He thought nothing of it for the moment. They are doing their normal rounds. Crossing his arms, he slid down against the post as he closed his eyes. The night watch was boring enough as it was but to be tired during the shift was even worse.
    Shaking his head, Caldor forced himself to stay awake. What a boring night. I’d kill to have something happen. Slumping over the wall of the lookout, his ears twitched. He heard no movements anymore and everything was as quiet as death.
    Giving a sigh, Caldor sat on the ground again. Nothing was going to happen. No one in their right mind would go after Megorin. It was the largest fortress next to Dermin. No force would dare attack them. Well of course there were the Sigme. They were a force to be reckoned with. A war tribe; a soulless, wicked group with eyes as black as night. They had been bothering the Demori for months now but there was no reason to attack Camarns, they hadn’t done anything wrong. Closing his eyes, the nagging feeling came to his stomach again. What the hell did I eat? Caldor asked himself placing his hands on his stomach. I swear Marcia is trying to poison me. Laughing at the thought he opened his eyes again.
    Just then his ears twitched. A flash of light flew over his head and bounced off the stone floor of the lookout. Scampering over to pick up the now steaming stick, Caldor could see it had been an arrow. A flaming arrow at that! Hurrying over towards the wall, Caldor looked over the edge. Another arrow flew passed his head this time nicking his hair. The smell of burnt hair stung his nose as he moved back.
    “Crap!” Caldor shouted running towards the warning bell. Picking the large rope up, he pulled on it with all his might. The sounds rang over the cave, echoing down the halls. “Gah! My ears!”
    Hearing as cries from below began echoing and flames flew from the windows Caldor could feel his heart stop. The sounds he had heard earlier weren’t night guards they were enemy soldiers. Marcia! He thought noticing that windows from his home glowing with flames. Lorena! Bolting towards the stairs Caldor didn’t notice his people run passed. The flames from each room grew larger and men in black armour seemed almost impenetrable from affair. Drawing his sword, there was no one that would get in his way. Marcia and Lorena were his life. No one was going to take that away from him. His blade flashed in front of his face.
    Cries from his enemies were mere buzzes in his ears compared to the thoughts of his family. Opening the door to their home, Caldor froze. On the floor holding closely to a bundle of material was Marcia.
    “No!” Caldor cried, seeing his wife on the floor. The smoke poured out of the door and the flames grew higher from the wind that came through the open window. “No! Sirphan, why?”
    Dropping his weapon to the floor he crawled on his knees to where his wife was. She was no longer breathing and her once black hair was now white. Her soul. Caldor couldn’t even think of what he was seeing. Her soul is gone. She’s gone! Throwing himself on top of her, he wanted more then ever to die. He should have acted sooner. If he had rung the bell when he had first heard movement from below he could have prevented this.
    Feeling movement beneath his chest, Caldor sat up. He had forgotten for a brief second about the material Marcia was holding. Moving the material away slowly, Caldor looked down at his little girl. Her hair was slowly changing and her breathing had stopped.
    “No!” Caldor cried picking his little girl up into his arms. It had only been hours before that he had walked the halls with his little girl and watched as she smiled at him. “You took my wife and now my child! Sirphan! You are no Goddess of protection! You are no Goddess of this earth! You are the Goddess of death! You hear! You are a killer!”
    Pulling his daughter to his chest, he could no longer feel her heartbeat. The smoke in the room was hard to bear and the ashes were making his eyes burn but if his family was gone he might as well die as well. Rocking back and forth he watched his daughter’s black hair turn to white. Her once rosy red cheeks were now pale. Tears rolled down his cheeks as he looked around for something he could do. All his life he had wanted a family and now in a split second they had been taken away.
    There was no one to help and no one to save them now. They were gone, his wife and child were both gone. Placing his little girl in front of him, Caldor felt hopeless. His life was pointless; there was nothing to live for.
    “Sirphan! Why did you do this to me?” Caldor called out to the Goddess he had grown to believe in. He had worshipped her at every ceremony and festival. He had even given offerings to protect his family from illness and poverty. Now it seemed none of that mattered. All his prays had gone unheard.
    “You are a strange race,” a voice echoed in the room as the flames began to die down, “although you’re strange I can use you.”
    “Me?” Caldor asked the voice as he looked around the room. Nothing was there with him and for some reason he didn’t feel threatened.
    “Not you, I mean your child.” A woman appeared. Her dress white sparkled like the stars and her hair danced like the wind. Branches grew from her forehead and her eyes glowed a pale green. “You will protect her until she is led away.”
    “She’s dead!” Caldor shouted at the strange woman as a smile came to her face. “And who are you to say you’ll use my daughter!”
    “Angry are you?” The woman muttered glancing at the child. “I’m not here to be hostile, I’m here to solve a problem a fellow God has created. Now you asked me who I am, but you already know that answer, Caldor of Megorin. You’re just fighting it but to save time, I’m the Goddess Sirphan.”
    “What do you want with my daughter?”
    “I want to save her.” Sirphan answered seeing a glimmer of hope come into Caldor’s eyes. “She will carry a gift I will give her to use to rid this world of all those who wish to bring harm to those that are innocent.”
    “She’s a girl! It’s against her culture!”
    “You mean it’s against your belief!” The Goddess shouted silencing Caldor again. “She is strong and will bring peace to this world. This child will be legend and bring a new ruling over this world. She is my plan. Do you deny this?”
    “No, Goddess.” Caldor muttered feeling ashamed at what he had said to the one who protected his people. This God was willing to spare his daughter out of many as well. What made her so special? Shaking his head, Caldor didn’t want to think too much into it. “She is yours.”