I have been working on this piece for several years now, but I seem to have no time to work on it now. Also, I have reached a block in the road that hinders my progress to continue on with the story. However, I want to finish it, and I want people to read it. So here is the first part for my classmates and Professor to read and critique as much as they like.
Snow fell softly to the forest floor, blanketing the world in white. The elves breath could be seen as they ran through the woods. The nocturnal animals scurried to safety as the couple passed by swiftly, with just a whisper of sound. They ran gracefully, with dignity and inhuman speed. Large snowflakes gathered on their dark cloaks and stuck to the ferns of the forest floor. The elves did not follow a path or road; rather they made their own, following the moon.
They soon came to a halt at a running river that cut through the silence of the night. The male elf slowly made his way to the water, holding his hand out to help his female companion. She took his hand without hesitation, but did not step into the freezing water like the male.
“Jasobin, what do you think she will be like?” she asked softly. Jasobin smiled and returned to her side. He took her hands in his and brought them to his lips.
“If she is anything like Xelandon prophesized, she will be absolutely amazing. No worries, Nomi, she will be perfect. Come, we must get there before he does.”
Nomi shivered and then nodded, gripping Jasobin’s hand tightly. Together they forded the river, cold water rushing over their black leather boots. They did not have to worry about swimming, for the water was low at that time of year and only came up to their ankles. The stones at the bottom gave the elves a bit of trouble while crossing, slipping under their light weight. Jasobin kept a tight hold on Nomi, helping her less matured self across the rapidly rolling water. They reached the other side in another two minutes, and then continued in a quick pace to their destination.
The forest seemed to shiver as the couple ascended a large hill and a chilly breeze surrounded their bodies in a gentle but firm grip. Their cloaks billowed behind them in the wind, and Nomi’s silky black hair was whipped around her face. The spruce trees became less crowded as the couple climbed. She and Jasobin reached the top of the hill, and before them lay the peaceful town of Cresding, covered in snow. The houses were dark, grey smoke entering the air in wispy ribbons from the thatched roofs of the small homes, keeping the inhabitants warm in the cold night air.
“She’s here, I can feel it,” Jasobin whispered. Nomi nodded as they flew over the hill on their swift feet and reached the wall of the town. They adopted a human paced walk and approached the front gate. Two guards jumped to their posts as they saw the newcomers.
“Do you have any idea what time it is?” said a very irritated guard to the couple.
“It’s bloody midnight!” said the other guard, glaring at the elves. Jasobin lowered his hood so the humans would be able to see. Their faces fell as they recognized Jasobin for who he was. His short bronze hair, his glowing silver eyes, his pointed ears, and his fascinating handsome features gave him away. His beautiful face was not the only clue. A silver crown rested on his head, diamonds glinting in the moonlight. The guards gawped at him for several seconds before bowing their heads.
“Your Majesty,” they said, sarcasm dripping off their tongues.
“Please, I ask admittance to the wonderful Cresding. Please allow my partner and I to pass,” Jasobin said elegantly. Though he radiated kindness, the men glared up at him. It was clear that they did not enjoy an elf’s company. They looked suspiciously at Nomi, who had lowered her hood and flashed her gold eyes at them.
“Who is she then?” asked one of the guards.
“A companion,” Jasobin said simply. The guard nodded.
“I suppose you will be allowed in. How long will you be staying? I don’t want the trade for this town to be spoiled by your appearance.”
“We will be here just for tonight. I swear that we will be gone before sunrise.”
The guards nodded and allowed the pair to pass through the wooden gate. Jasobin grabbed Nomi’s hand once again as they entered the filthy town. No human was out roaming the streets. Only the elves’ footprints in the snow and smoke rising from the chimneys marked life.
“I wish I could just use a little magic to shut those guards’ mouths,” Nomi grumbled. Jasobin turned to look her in the eye.
“Nomi, it does no good to dwell on the things you can’t change. They will come around to respect us. If only Xelandon wasn’t terrorizing all corners of this world.”
Nomi sighed and they continued down the road. They traveled through the snow covered streets, passing many houses. The windows were all dark, the town silent. They stopped at a small wooden house. Jasobin peaked into the window, then closed his eyes and sniffed.
“She’s here, just here. Come on, let’s see her,” he said, keeping a firm grasp on Nomi’s hand. They crept through the front door, not making a sound as they closed it behind them. Snores coming from the corner told them that two adults were sleeping soundly. Jasobin closed his eyes, letting his instinct guide him. He climbed a set of stairs, all the while Nomi holding tightly onto his hand, and they entered a small loft where two children slept on one hay bed. A cradle was placed next to the wall. The elves closed in on it. They knelt beside it and gazed down at the baby girl.
“She’s beautiful,” Nomi said, stroking the infant’s snow white face and surprisingly long black hair. The baby opened her eyes sleepily and gazed at the intruders. Nomi pulled her hand back and gasped.
“Jasobin her eyes!” she whispered.
“He got to her first! Xelandon!” he answered.
“What are we to do?”
Jasobin thought for a moment. “We must meet with the Council. My father and the Elders will know what to do.”
“Jasobin, she can’t stay here in this human town. She’ll be accused of witchcraft and burned at the stake!”
“I know, dear, I know.”
They stood and left the child in her crib. She stared at them with her mismatched eyes, coal black and electric blue, as they left. Nomi and Jasobin hurried to the town square, stopping at the frozen pond.
“Nomi, I must use magic in order to meet with the Council immediately. Follow right after me,” he said before closing his eyes and becoming very still. Nomi watched the pond’s surface. The ice cracked, leaving an opening just large enough for one person. The water rippled and took an image very familiar to Nomi. It was the inside of the Palace, the throne room. Jasobin stepped into the water and disappeared in a flash of blue. Nomi took a deep breathe than followed suit. After a second of unstoppable spinning, she felt her feet hit the hardwood floor. Looking around she found herself standing next to Jasobin in the Throne Room, King Orleinden and Lady Ellex sitting in their thrones in front of them. The Council of Elders sat around the room, surrounding the couple.
“Jasobin! My dear child what brings you here at this hour? We were in the middle of a meeting of some importance,” the king said, question in his silver eyes. His wife slid her hand into his, her soft brown eyes gazing at the couple in front of her. Nomi and Jasobin dove into deep bows before answering the king. Despite the king’s young appearance, power and an ancient knowledge radiated from him, surrounding the room in comfortable safety.
“Please, forgive us Father,” Jasobin answered as he rose from his bow. “Nomi and I just returned from seeing the baby.”
“Yes, of course, but I don’t understand why you must interrupt a meeting in the middle of the night to tell me this. Explain, please.”
“Father, as we looked upon the child, it became apparent that Xelandon has reached her first. She opened her eyes and they were different colors. Why Xelandon left the baby in her crib to live with the humans remains a mystery to me, but Nomi and I both agree that the child is not safe to live in Cresding. She must be protected!”
King Orleinden frowned, his bronze eyebrows furrowing as he contemplated this new discovery. Lady Ellex’s eyes were opened wide with shock and fear. The Council members were muttering to each other and shifting restlessly in their seats. After a moment of the king’s deliberation, he cleared his throat and looked into his son’s eyes.
“I also agree that the child must not stay there. However, suggesting that we take her in ourselves is questionable. How do we know that she will not pose a threat to the kingdom and citizens? Xelandon’s unforgivable potion may prove to turn the child into something life threatening.”
“Father, please, she’s just an infant. If she was taught our ways, our pure and honest ways, perhaps she can be saved,” Jasobin answered. Several of the Council members nodded their heads in agreement. King Orleinden looked at the members in turn, trying to read their emotionless faces.
“What does the Council say, Stephawgn?” he asked. The Council members looked to the Speaker, a tall dark man with long, silky black hair and smooth features. The Speaker cocked his head and the rest of the Council nodded their heads in synchronization.
“The Council agrees with Prince Jasobin, my lord,” Stephawgn answered in his deep ringing voice. The king nodded and turned to his son.
“Jasobin, return to Cresding at once and retrieve the child. Bring her back to the throne room immediately so we may see her.”
“Yes, Father,” Jasobin said. Grabbing Nomi’s hand, he used the same portal magic he had in the human town and together they stepped into the pool of water on the floor. Their feet hit the snow packed road near the well of Cresding and they sprinted to the house of the infant. Without making a sound, they entered the house, crept up the stairs and came to a sudden stop. A dark cloaked figure stood over the crib, holding the infant in his slender arms.
“Isn’t she wonderful,” crooned the male elf, turning to face Jasobin and Nomi. He was cuddling the child close to his chest; a light that had never been seen before in the elf’s life glowed in his mismatched eyes.
“Xelandon, give her to me at once,” growled Jasobin, holding out his arms. Xelandon chuckled softly and turned his silver and red eyes to the girl’s face. He stroked her hair and begun singing her a lullaby that was commonly heard in the elven capitol, Elor. Nomi stamped her feet impatiently. Xelandon clicked his tongue.
“Now, now, Nomi, patience is the key to everything,” Xelandon said softly, once again looking up to meet the couple’s eyes. “I see living in Elor for the past one hundred years hasn’t taught you very much.”
Nomi hissed and stepped forward only to be held back by Jasobin. “You’ll hurt the child,” he whispered to her. She glared at Xelandon, giving up her attempt to attack him.
“What do you want?” Nomi said through gritted teeth.
“I wish for nothing but the safety of this child,” answered Xelandon in his sickly sweet voice. Nomi made a disbelieving sound. “You do not believe me, and for good reason I’m sure, but please, know that I only wish for young Araina to be well cared for…oh and trained for the destruction of the king’s rule.”
“I knew it! That’s why you changed her!” Jasobin whispered loudly.
“Of course, dear prince, why else would I do such a thing?” exclaimed Xelandon as if he couldn’t believe that it took the prince so long to understand.
“Give her to us, Xelandon, or I swear that I will do everything in my power to destroy you!” Jasobin growled. He raised his right hand, a whitish glow emanating from it. Xelandon looked at it scornfully before setting down the baby in her crib.
“Please, Jasobin, I do not wish to fight on such a glorious night. But if you insist, I suppose we must,” sighed Xelandon, raising his left hand. Before Xelandon had the chance to summon magic, Jasobin flicked his wrist and sent Xelandon silently crashing to the wood floor, wrists and ankles bound, mouth gagged.
“Hurry, Nomi, get the baby!”
Nomi swiped the child from her crib and rushed to Jasobin. Together they silently sprinted down the rickety stairs and out of the house. They dashed to the town square, but before they could perform the portal magic, Xelandon came bounding down the road like a mountain lion, a cruel and ugly grimace on his scarred face.
“Give her to me, she’s mine!” screamed Xelandon. He reached for Jasobin but Nomi pulled the prince to her and together they spun through the portal Nomi had just made and landed safely in the throne room of the elven capitol, Elor. The Council of Elders, the king, and Lady Ellex all jumped by the sudden appearance of the prince and his companion. Jasobin and Nomi stood panting as the surprise in the room faded away to let in curiosity.