Two months ago, Skeletor and King Hiss jointly led a massive army against Eternos. With no one left to command Eternos that wasn't under the influence of the Spirit of Evil, former King Miro took his old throne back temporarily. However, during the course of the battle, King Hiss gave Skeletor up to the Hordak. Eventually, the army was crushed, but Skeletor remained the prisoner of Hordak.
Four days ago, She-Ra and He-Man traveled back in time to stop Kobra Kahn who (under the instruction of King Hiss) went back 1,000 years to assassinate the twins ancestor, He-Ro. They succeeded in stopping Kobra Kahn, but uncovered some mysterious elements to their own past and their mantles as champions of Grayskull. However, they were unable to get their questions answered.
Chapter One: "Ghosts"
"Out flank their left! Out flank their left!"
Tri-Klops snarled, gritting his teeth together. His eyes spun and released an energy beam right at Man-At-Arms. He ducked, rolled, and opened fire. Laser beams went sizzling through the air, one striking Tri-Klop's shoulder. He crumbled backward.
"Give it up, Evil-Lynn!" came a cry.
Evil-Lynn sneered and pointed her staff at the origin of the voice. He-Man blocked the energy that came searing from her staff.
"Never!" she replied, frustration more than evident in her voice. With a full contingent of Evil Warriors at her command, there was no reason why she should. They stood between the Heroic Warriors and the abyss that surrounded Castle Grayskull.
"There is no surrender this day, heroes," she cried.
"We have you outnumbered, Evil Lynn. Surrender now and we'll let you go peacefully," He-Man demanded, the Heroic Warriors coming closer. The battle had been going on for nearly an hour and both teams had just recently rallied around their leaders. The Heroic Warriors looked ready for a fight. The Evil Warriors looked exhausted.
But Evil Lynn was never one to give up so easily.
"Grayskull will be ours, He-Man! We will succeed where Skeletor has so often failed!"
"Following your former masters footsteps will not find you power. You know this!" He-Man argued. "Stop your posturing and fall back!"
She slammed her staff onto the ground and small tremor shook the ground slightly. Tri-Klops began to see something that he noticed during their time as 'sex buddies' manifest here on the battlefield. Pride. She would not give up - she would lead them to their graves.
As she continued to fire boastful comments at He-Man, Tri-Klops glanced at the small group consisting of Tri-Klops, Spikor, Karg, and Beast-Man. He nodded. The four went into action, activating the homing devices on their vehicles and beasts.
"Came against and you will be crashed as water does to rock! You will fall and fail!" she ranted.
"Evil-Lynn . . . it's over," Tri-Klops told her, walking up behind her.
"What?!" she raged, eyes wide.
Rotons, Spydors, Land Sharks, and Fright Flyers came rushing across the plain, quickly moving into the crowd Evil Warriors. As soon as they came, the Evil Warriors climbed aboard.
"I can't believe you, Tri-Klops!" Evil Lynn shouted.
Tri-Klops rolled his three eyes and hopped on to one of the Spydors. "Are you getting on or are you not?"
She huffed and then reluctantly climbed on.
"THIS IS NOT THE END, HEROES! GRAYSKULL SHALL BE OURS!"
He-Man smirked and glanced at Teela and Extendar. "Now where have I heard that before?"
Extendar laughed, but Teela just ignored him and walked off. He-Man sighed a little. Not a single word since their talk a two weeks ago. Despite their still strong friendship as Adam and Teela, the He-Man portion had vanished.
"We're going to do a perimeter search," Man-At-Arms reported. "After that, we're going to head off to Eternos to prepare for the party tonight."
"Gotcha," He-Man answered. At that moment, he glanced around and noticed just where he was standing. One thousand years ago at this exact same spot, there was the statue of the mysterious King Grayskull. But now? Nothing. Not even rubble. Why? What could have happened here that would have wiped out? And why hadn't heard about him before?
"Have you . . ." He-Man paused, then lowered his voice. "Have you ever heard a King Grayskull?"
Man-At-Arms' expression was that of confusion. "No, I haven't. Why?"
"There was a statue here in the past. It was of a man named King Grayskull."
When He-Man said that, there was a strange howl in the wind. Both Man-At-Arms and He-Man looked over at Castle Grayskull, as if expecting some sort of response. Nothing. No movement in the windows, no opening of the drawbridge. Nothing.
"There are things, He-Man, that we just aren't supposed to know," Duncan said after a long moment. "You of all people know just how important some secrets are. If you are supposed to know about this King Grayskull, then the Sorceress will tell you when the time comes."
He-Man sighed and nodded. "I understand. What bugs me is that it makes me wonder just how many other secrets are being kept from me . . ."
Duncan didn't answer that, mostly because while he knew nothing about King Grayskull, he knew a lot more than He-Man (or Adam, for that matter) was ever supposed to know.
King Randor rushed down the stairs to the main landing pad. Queen Johanna exited her transport, brown hair waving in the wind. Her older brother hugged her hard.
"Oh, Johanna, my sister," he called. "Good to have you back home."
"Good to see you again, brother," she replied, smiling.
"And Dell and Edwina! My kin!" Randor blurted when Johanna's two children left the transport.
"Uncle," Edwina greeted and she did a curtsey.
"Hello Uncle Randor," Dell followed.
"So great to see you! Come in, now, come in!"
The group entered into the Palace. Johanna smiled at her older brother. "I heard there was some excitement this morning. Evil-Lynn trying to fill Skeletor's shoes?"
"Yes and failing at it quite miserably."
"Skeletor still is a prisoner of the Horde?" Johanna asked.
"Yes. And I can only hope he'll remain there," Randor returned. He didn't care for the reaction that was in Johanna's eyes. It was a look full of sympathy. He said nothing about it, though.
"Where is grandfather?" asked Dell.
"Queen Marlena has taken him into the farmlands to pick-up Rohad. He'll be back in about two hours. King Stephan and Prince Jeremy will be here in about half an hour. The rest of the guests will be here this evening."
"And just how many guests are we expecting?" questioned Edwina.
"It's King Miro's birthday party. Half the planet is showing up, along with a fair amount of Etheria."
Rohad, son Dorrian, hadn't seen his old friend and the former King Miro since that night that Miro left the throne. Though he was well aware of Miro's return, neither had any time to see the other. Until now, that is. Rohad stood on the porch of his small in the southern lands as the Wind-Raider and two Talon Fighters came to the ground.
Miro climbed out of the Wind-Raider, followed by Queen Marlena.
"King Miro!" shouted Rohad. "Last time I saw you, you were heading off into the wilds on the back of a horse. And what happens? You get kidnapped by a woman for twenty years!"
"Guess I should have taken your advice and stuck around, old friend," Miro replied.
The two old men embraced. "Good to see you, sire."
"Please, Rohad, that part of my life is over. I am not the king."
"Not according to what I hear. Word tells me that you were quite in command when Eternos was attacked."
"Temporary, old friend. Randor is the king, not I."
"Whatever you say, sire. By the way, happy birthday. Care to join me for some coffee before we head off to this overblown party?"
"Of course, of course," Miro returned. He turned to Marlena and motioned her forward. "Come on in, Marlena. Sit and listen to two old men shoot the shit."
The evening hours arrived and after a little while, Marlena, Miro, and Rohad joined the celebration at the Royal Palace. This was Miro's 80th birthday, and as Randor suggested, most Eternia had showed up.
From Lizardia came Lizard-Man. Stratos, Hawk, and Delora came from Avion. Queen Androna and Buzz-Off journeyed from Insectia. King Paw from the Cats capital of Felis Dee came. The Bears own King Jovah, Queen Jeda, and Prince Jade. The Starchild came in the name of the Cave People and Tree People.
As the party was getting started, Queen Angella, Princess Adora, Glimmer, Bow, Kowl, and Castaspella arrived.
"Hello grandfather!" Adora greeted, giving her elder a huge hug.
"Oh, hello my dear!"
Adora released and allowed Angella to greet him. "King Miro, so good to see you once more."
"Indeed it is, my dear, indeed it is."
"Hey sis!" Adam then shouted, coming across the room. The two hugged and Adam was - as usual - happy to see his twin sister, despite it being only four days since their time traveling adventure came to an end. Kathryn was busy talking with one the Insectoids.
The entire Throne Room was filled to the brim with music and food. Along with all this royalty were dozens of dignitaries and other old friends of the former king.
About an hour after their arrival, Adam, Adora, Randor, Miro, and Angella all came together during the course of their mingling.
"So, Queen Angella, any word on Skeletor? Still a prisoner of the Horde?" asked Randor.
"Yes, actually," Angella answered. "We've caught wind that Hordak to execute him in four days."
"You're kidding me!?" exclaimed Adam, nearly spitting out his wine.
"No joke, brother," Adora returned.
No one saw the expression on Miro's face at this news. It was one of pure shock and aghast. Randor glanced at his father and Miro hid the look immediately.
"I don't know about this," Adam told them. "I mean . . . can we let him just be killed like this?"
"Does he deserve to die, Prince Adam?" questioned Queen Angella. "Consider what he has done these past few years."
"I wonder if the Evil Warriors know about this . . ." Adora wondered.
King Randor cleared his throat. "Let's not worry about this right now, hmm? This is a celebration. Don't you agree, father?"
Miro nodded slowly. "Yes. Yes, of course."
The celebration went on, of course, just as planned. Orko had a bit of a magic show, which surprisingly went just fine. Man-E-Faces put on a one-man, one-monster, one-robot show about King Miro's life, as well as had a brief roasting comments aimed at King Randor. After that, a dance followed.
Then came time for the toast, which King Randor himself gave.
"I propose a toast to my father, Miro, son of David. He who stood against Goblins, Orcs, the Enchantress, Skeletor, King Hiss and the Spirit of Evil's influence. This man, who has saved this kingdom even after retirement. On this, his 80th birthday, as his son, I ask that we all honor him in a toast."
Miro grinned as everyone bowed, raised their glasses, came up, and drank in the form of the Eternian toast.
"Thank you, my friends. Thank you so very much," he told them. "I spent far too many years in a prison. To even be free is wonderful, but to be here . . . in such great company is an honor. I am grateful beyond measure to be here among such fine people. I am humbled by your presence and I hope greatly that you all live to be as old as I am! And I hope that you will all be have such a wondrous family as I do!"
He drank from his cup, and everyone joined him.
The party went on for several hours. There was a feast of food, more dancing, more laughs, more drinks. Sometime after midnight, the guests began to head back to their homes. Adora decided to remain on Eternia for the night, so she could stay with her family.
At some point between King Paw's exit and Kathryn's heading home, King Randor lost track of his father. Making sure that everyone had a place to sleep, Randor went looking for Miro.
The former king stood at the top of a series of stone steps in the garden. In his hand was a glass of wine and he leaned against a railing next that looked over the slopping garden next to the stairs. The stars and the moons bathed the garden in a soft blue light.
"Father?" asked Randor, walking over.
"Hello, son," Miro replied.
"Did you have a good time?"
Miro gave his oldest son a big, toothy smile. "I did indeed. Thank you."
"Well, you're welcome." They paused and looked at the stars together. At long last, Randor spoke. "The news of Skeletor's execution disturbs you."
Miro nodded. "More than you realize. Randor . . ." Miro stopped and took a deep breath before resuming. "For years, I've blamed what happened to Keldor on what happened right here. This is where your mother fell and as a result, died and Keldor was curses with a premature birth and a weak heart because of it. I blamed that moment because I didn't know any better.
"And then, as I sat in the dungeon of the Enchantress for years and years, I had a lot of time to think. To think about who was really to blame. And I came to one conclusion. Me. I am to blame. I should helped him, I should have guided him."
"Father, don't . . ."
"Damn it, Randor, it's all my fault! If I had just steered him in the right direction. If I had just aided him, helped him overcome his disability . . ." He looked right at Randor now. "I had every intention of coming back here after I was rescued and trying to find him again. Try and help him redeem himself . . . and myself as well. Then you tell me what happened to him in my absence. Becoming Hordak's pupil, kidnapping your daughter, turning into this monster named Skeletor . . . and I still blame myself. Fight with me if you will, Randor, but I know the truth. I am his father and I was the reason his life went this way."
Miro stood completely up and set down his glass.
"No more, Randor. I will no longer watch him destroy his life and I will not let him die."
Randor's eyes grew wide. "Father, wait, what are you talking about?"
Miro looked Randor square in the eyes. "I am going to save my son and I am going to at long last bring him back."