A Trail of Storms
in the lands of Namkhenon there was an old king, he was small and slim and his wits were almost nonexistent. His name was King Elkhor Namkhen III and he had ruled his Father's lands for only a handful of years. He ascended the Tarantula throne, in the year 809 ACR after his father died at the age of 93.
Elkhor had never Wed, and at the age of 60 it looked as if it would always be that way. He was a silent man, his Guards saw the lonesomeness that hid behind his quiet demeanor.
He looked at his Guards of ‘The Eight Legs of the kings’ as his own children, and most saw him as their father.
One dark and damp night, Elkhor sat reading his favorite book on The War that Unified, it was the first war to tear Eloe into shreds of the strong land it was. As he was reading a chapter on the glorious Shekdren Olviante who was a hero among the people. It was not uncommon for the Simple folk to light candles to Shekdren. He protected the people in life and death and that is what interested Elkhor the most. For the most part, Elkhor was loved by his people. But being loved doesn’t always enforce the law and protect order. His people may have loved him, but they horrible things of him.
“If Elkhor is 62 and without a wife, what’s wrong with him?”
“He’s Infertile, e’rry one knows it. it’s cause of all his readn’s. he loves em books more than he loves a woman’s den.”
And it was true. His books gave him the solace and peace of mind that no human could. he went anywhere he wanted in the Histories he read.
No human woman still alive could compare to that.
As Elkhor read on, the fire raging in his fireplace went from a soft orange glow to an eire dark blue. The room, once covered in a soft relaxing glow was now in darkness but for the dark blue light that cascaded on Elkhor.
Elkhor stood and as he did, a mist arose from the blue light.
the mist swirled and turned in the space in front of him until, Before him stood the High Priest of the Order of the Eagle. His drabby grey cloak shifted as his hands rose to his hood and pulled it back.
“Elkhor, my friend! how are you faring this night?”
Elkhor smiled at the Eagle Priest and laughed.
“I would be faring better if i could read the last 15 pages of this book.”
Makhrek Chuckled throatily,
“You’ve read that more times than I’ve taken a breath in this life.” Makhren said in a playful tone.
“You’re right.” Elkhor said as he closed his book, not even saving the page, and set it on the table to his right.
“What brings you to me on this night dear friend?”
Makhren wasted no time.
“We have spoken to Helaat, he instructed us to bring you to the peak of Mt. Sulvin.”
The Old King of Namkhen was taken aback by this.
“Helaat has called me? the father of storms and the God of the Skies has called for me?”
Makhren shook his head.
“You must travel to us, you must make the pilgrimage up to the peak.”
With those words, Makhren became but mist and then was gone.
Elkhor had no choice, he had to go if Helaat called, the Gods did not like to be kept waiting.
It took his guard half a day to get supplies to last them the journey, and within mere hours they set out for the Sulvin mountains.
From the capitol Yolkhon to the base of the Sulvin mountains was only a 3 day journey.
Elkhor had learned quickly in his life to be cautious always, and he expected at most to be delayed at least four days. But that didn't happen. they arrived at the snow covered base of the mountains in only 3 and a half days.
“Snow has covered the Pilgrims path, your highness.” Rallho the head Guard of the Eight legs said.
“I can see that clearly enough.” The King said sternly.
“It will not hinder our journey, I’ve made the Pilgrimage enough times to know the way.”
So Elkhor lead his men up the path. it was only wide enough for them to ride in pairs without one of them falling to their deaths.
The wind pierced through their clothes and it didn't take long for them to start to shiver.
The only one of them who seemed unaffected by the weather was Elkhor.
Elkor showed no sign of being cold, when he spoke he didn't shiver. When he commanded his Guard his voice did not falter.
The winds raged and roared whipping their cloaks and making them crack in the gusts.
The sky was a dim grey, giving as little sunlight as it pleased. These were Helaats lands, his sights and his will were focused and intensified here.
After only three hours on the Path, Elkhor decided to set up a camp. he knew that his men and women were weary. He had only allowed little rest for them so they would be ready for the worst that never happened.
The camp was constructed quickly, and the Guard started to relax even quicker. Severe Cold was not uncommon in the capital of Namkhen, but this cold pierced through them all. The guard huddled in groups in the for tents they erected for themselves.
In Elkors Tent, Elkhor was reading about the Lovers of the forest. The lovers caused the War of Roots, where the trees themselves stood and exiled the humans after they were cursed by Asheran and turned into the vile snake people known as the Tokono Mo’aga. As he was consumed in the book, the winds picked up. He heard a distant cry and it stirred him from his chair. he walked to the flap of his tent and opened it slowly, peeking out to see if anyone or anything was near. But there was nothing. Again the cry echoed in the win, this time he had had enough.
“Who is there”? He shouted into the darkness. But there was no reply.
His Guard came out of their tents, Amanya was the first to speak “Your Highness, is all alright?”
In that moment something started to walk towards them all from the darkness, it was Silver and over nine feet tall. Its eyes shone a sickly green. The eight Legs of the Kind circled Melkhor as it got closer.
"Sitting on a cloud, Helaat said "And now my fun begins." As he watched joyously.
"Melkhor may yet be worthy. If he is of dim wit, I may yet shine a light upon him." He said with a wide smile.
Helaat wore a vest made of bright silver feathers. Stronger than any material. His fathers were said to be from his beloved dragon, Arenar. Arenar was his consort. A massive light, reflective silver colored Dragon, with smokey grey feathers around his mouth and the two black antlers that lay atop his head.
He Watched on as Melkhors guard encircled him.
Melkhor stood, watching as this as the beast dee closer, his guard drew their weapons. Two Longswords, two longbows, two Thick Warhammers, and the two front spears.
It's silvery body reflected the light of the two moons, the Brother and the Sister, half silvery red, and half white.
Suddenly his guard dropped unconscious on the hard mountainous ground.
He looked at his sons and daughters, the Eight legs of the king, there they all lay unmoving. He looked up to the the Beast had gotten closer. It's haunting green eyes shone brighter than any torch.
It said in a deep grumbling voice.
"Who am I?"
Melkhor never flinched.
"Hello Arenar." He said calmly.
"This time of year it is a most treacherous journey to Yolkhon, I had no delay. We entered the Chill which I've found unbearable before, and I was almost warm."
He looked up as the Massive Dragon flew into the air and coiled around itself.
The sky boomed with his laughter. Soon followed the sounds of snows rushing down the mountains in avalanches.
"Do you know what's next "
Arenar said, his words thunderous.
Melkhor just gazed upon the sky dragons beauty, hearing his words, but captivated by his immense power.
"The Tests of Hellat begin." He said. But only in Melkhors mind. Then, Thousands of lightning bolts hit almost every inch of the mountains but the area in which Melkhor camped.
His guards started to stir. All jumped to their feet, weapons in hand.
Confused they shared glances with one another, then back at Melkhor.
"Sleep tonight, but prepare for tomorrow."
Melkhor said as he went back into his tent leaving them behind.
As he lay on his pallet of furs and silks he thought of the days to come.
'I should have told them' he thought solemnly.
'I should have prepared them more for the new day, and tasks to come. But they are better not knowing, not worrying about the dawn.'