The knocking repeated, this time the thudding from the door vibrated through all the wood in his house. Who on earth could this possibly be? He thought as he threw his blue trench coat over his khaki shirt, No one is supposed to know I’m here.
Rushing to the front of his house he pressed his silver beard against the window to the right of his rounded door to look out and observe his disruptors. A group of young mages, none that he knew. They were all young and judging by their rough clothing, the small wooden boat they came to his island with and their casual yet nervous attitude he immediately deduced that none of them had any allegiances to any of the great houses. Looking at the group from right to left there was an amber haired girl wearing a brown pointed hat and long coat over the black garments that covered her tall and slender build. Below her stood a boy, probably the youngest in the group, His clothing replicated that of the first girl; save him leaving his golden locks exposed to the dull light that seeped through the overcast sky. Next to the boy stood another girl, not as tall as the first, wearing dark clothing that contrasted her pale skin and hair. Last in the line was another boy, who was older than the other and wore a brown jacket to wear over his red shirt and dark pants, he was scanning the island constantly in a ritualistic fashion through his rounded spectacles whilst being crushed by the bag he wore on his back. The four of them stood behind a boy who stood in a stance that oozed confidence, it was as if his tall muscular build relieved him from any burdens he may have. He wore a dull plum coat with a tall collar which covered the edges of his smirk and the tails of his coat hid most of his navy trousers from the sea behind them. The boy was initially looking at the door, then shifted his glance to look at the window with the other heads turning as he did so.
In shock of the sudden attention he had garnered, the old man swiftly stepped left from the window and opened the door in what was almost a single fluid motion; The cool air rushed in to battle the warmth the fireplace had built up. “What are y-”, “Hiya, Ewyn, y’alright!” The boy intruded upon Ewyns prompt as he also pushed into the house, Smiling as he scanned the house before returning his grin to Ewyn. “Nice place ya got ‘ere eh?”, “Do I know you, boy?” Ewyn squeezed through a clenched jaw, a girl from the four paced up to the pair during this exchange. Stopping in front of them, she span to address the other three, her blonde hair and dark coat moving upwards with the momentum, “I knew we shouldn’t have had this idiot lead,” she began with, mimicking Ewyns tone. Loosening up, she turned to Ewyn and continued, “Hello, Ewyn, I’m Margaret and we’re here in need of your help on behalf of the nomads.” Ah, it makes sense now, Ewyn relaxed as her words rang true with him. “I see, you want me to return and teach my people,” He started with, it was only a matter of time before the nomads ran out of mages who were able to sufficiently teach all of their students. Puzzled, Margaret began softly, “N-no actual-”, “I will repeat to you what my letter sent to the leaders of the houses and the Nomads alike should have made clear. I will not be returning to pass my knowledge on to any of the groups in Ordovia, as I find them all unworthy of the power and I will not be maki-”, “Houses? How old is this geezer?” The boy behind Margaret intruded with, his voice completely displacing Ewyns. Ewyn looked up at the boy in combination of anger and confusion, “Don’t you speak of me like that boy!”, “For the love of Ceridwen, James, come here and shut up!” The second girl from the remaining three roared, her eyes emitted fury from under her pointed hat. James, to Ewyns surprise, listened and walked over to the three; standing on the opposite side of the group to the girl.
“Yes, as James was trying to say, you’ve misinterpreted the situation.” Margaret stated. “Well go on then, fill me in.” Ewyn fired back with. “Well first of all, the houses don’t exist as you knew it,” she began with in a polite tone that also indicated her surprise that he wasn’t aware of the landscape, “The Camerian order waged war with the rest of the country, defeating all the great houses, taking the throne for themselves and using every ounce of power they can get from it.”. The words she spoke struck his gut, causing his thoughts to spew out of his mouth without any chance for processing, “I-Impossible, how would they do it? Why would they do that? They were the ones I held in the highest regard, this has to be nonsense,”. He then paused, his head drifting as he stroked his beard in thought before turning to face Margaret once more, shifting to a more composed and articulate tone to pose his earlier insinuation as a question,“you’re lying to me aren’t you?”. Looking at her face he saw a sincere sadness that he wished weren’t there, her hand reached into the inside pocket of her coat before exiting to reveal a letter, “There’s also this.”, her tone carrying the same sorrow her face conveyed.
The letter read, Lord Airell, I have invited you and your people many times to join our dominion and yet you still refuse to even respond to my letters. Ewyn didn’t recognise the handwriting at all, but the paper and it’s ink were of the highest quality; it was real.
It continued, You nomad roaches were lucky that I even extended my hand in the name of unity. The fact that you’ve clearly refused my kindness makes me both embarrassed and revolted. I will not rest until every last one of you bugs is crushed, I cannot forgive you for standing in the way of a united Ordovia. Lamorak.
Ewyn found himself completely bewildered, reading that letter, it clearly wasn’t written by anyone of noble standing yet it was obviously a letter sent from the highest position in Ordovia, the throne of Archon stamp at the bottom of the page makes this evident. He looked up to Margaret from the letter, “Who is this… Lamorak?” as he repeated the name, his voice carried a tone of mockery. “He’s a mercenary who managed to garner the support of all the knights in Cameria, convincing them that he’s some sort of prophet, a madman if you ask me.” She replied. Ewyn lowered his head in thought, “Well, it seems tyranny can rear its ugly head even where you least expect it.”, He mumbled, thinking to himself, It truly was a good idea not to entrust my research to anybody. Ewyn raised his head, his decision was made,“So you want me to join your battles against this... dominion?”. “We want you to resume your research and use it to supply us with weapons that would even the odds and yes, we’d need you to occasionally join our battles.”, Margaret listed in a slightly elated voice. “No.” Ewyn responded plainly, the ensuing shock he created paused time. A wave crashed outside before he continued “I refuse to supply anyone with my research, it’s too dangerous.”, “But, come on!” Margaret retorted, thudding her feet on the last two words. “You seriously don’t expect to just live in peace on this island whilst your allies suffer?”, “Yes, actually, I do, the suffering my research can create is far greater than that a single madman can cause." he said this in a belittling way, as if what he was saying was obvious. “That’s not what I-” She began before breaking off at the sight of the complete certainty painted on Ewyns' face, she knew she wouldn’t be able to move him. “Well if that’s so, could you at least fix this?" she reached her hand out to create a ring of magic in the air, then she twisted her hand and the ring followed suit, moving down and removing her arm where it travelled whilst also dispersing it’s patterns in her arms place. Her arm reappeared behind her friend's head out of another ring, grabbed an item from his bag, with the boy not even flinching, before twisting itself back through the ring and onto Margarets body. She presented the object to Ewyn. A staff, the Nomads' most treasured staff, Uvras.
Ewyn observed the object, What on earth happened here? The staff was broken in a way that surprised him,it was overcharged. The once fine and firm wood of the staff had been burnt to leave a stringy and flimsy mess, this must have been the result of a panicked effort to stop an enemy. He couldn’t leave his beautiful creation, the staff he gave to the nomads as a gift in tatters like this, he would have to go to his crafting station for the first time in decades. Ewyn looked up from his old creation to view Margaret’s deflated and expectant face, “Very well, I’ll head to the backroom now to fix this.”, a slight glow returned to her face when he said this. Ewyn then glanced at the rest of the group as he turned to go to the backroom when behind them he saw a large ship approaching his island and had to stop himself from taking another step.
“What, is that!” he roared, the sudden switch of attitude and volume brought panic to the faces of the entire group. They span in sync to see the large metallic boat heading toward them at a high speed. Leaving her friends in the collective gaze, Margaret quickly turned, completely flustered and tried to redeem the group,”W-we had no idea, There was no sign of anyone tailing us and we covered our tracks, this-this makes no sense!”. The distress in her voice was true, she hadn't tricked him. He softened his face, “Well, know who they are?”. “It’s most certainly the dominion, how’d they get such a large ship here so quickly?” The girl in the pointed hat replied in a baffled tone, still captured in her scanning of the ship. “They must’ve known where you were going and what you were doing whilst you lot didn’t even have an inkling, quite impressive if you ask me.” Ewyn smirked as he combed through his beard with his hands. “Don’t you commend them, gramps!” James commanded, his seemingly careless attitude from earlier being nowhere to be found. He turned to show his fury filled face to Ewyn,“Those bastards will torture and kill us!” he continued, the rage in his voice and mannerisms becoming less composed with every word, “Then, they-they’ll hunt our people like animals!”.
The boat landed on the shore, a large group of knights wearing crimson steel armour, covered from head to toe, stepping off the boat on wooden steps as it did. The knights formed a path, facing each other as one man wearing the same armour except for his exposed head, began making his way down the steps leading to the shore. He walked with a pride that filled his body to such a degree that it caused his chest to swell and made his fiery hair glow. After getting off the steps, he walked down the path made by the metallic blood droplets, stopping in front of the children. The five young nomad mages stood in subservience, waiting for his grin to communicate its meaning to them. Suddenly, “Thank you, children, you’ve done a great service for the people of Ordovia. We hope you’ll all continue to cooperate to give us more information that will help us create a united country.” as the words finished pouring from his mouth the path of knights gathered behind him to form a barricade. “You damned Camerian pigs!” James yelled as he began a march toward the man. “You and Lamorak will pay for what you’ve done to Ordovia one day, Lance!”, his advance was halted by Margaret pulling him by the arm. “I doubt that.” the man responded with, his grin growing towards his ears. “Take them aboard, I’ll take care of the rest.” his voice didn’t need to be raised to give this order, a knight came to grab each person, none of the mages put up any struggle. Lance walked to Ewyns door to see a flash of white light blind his sight, engulfing his body in pain, the burning sensation emitting from a painless void in his chest. He lost control of his body and fell backwards onto the ground to see the beam blow up his ship. The wreck became engulfed in flames as white as the beam that caused them, the knights and crew left on the ship bled from the boat either partially or completely consumed by the fire. The wall of knights on the beach fell into chaos trying to help the men that had fallen but only aiding the flames spread by giving it a new fuel source to burn through. The ship began to sink, the flames from the hole the beam created expanding across it as it did, destroying vital components, the magical white flames were so strong that the entire ship was clearly going to turn to ash. Lance looked at his dying men as them and the pool of blood he lay in burned under the same flames, the trail of ashes his chest created had reached his skull, he faded into a pile of black ashes under the pearly flames.
Ewyn stepped out of his door, a magical ring still expanded across his outstretched arm, his palm facing upwards and with a twist of his wrist the white ring moved to compress itself into a two dimensional ring the air in-front of his hand; the flames extinguished themselves. The ring then switched to a pale yellow. He slowly and methodically twisted his arm again to have his palm facing upwards before suddenly flicking his wrist, pointing his fingers upwards, the knights holding the five nomads got thrown miles into the sea.
The mages looked at Ewyn in awe. “Look what you’ve gone and made me do, looks like I’ll have to resume my research after all.” He sighed, a reluctant smile emerging from his face.