Summary: After growing weaker from the failed attempts of his father to complete his curse, Murtagh gets unexpected help to escape Uru'baen. But unknown danger is in his path as he tries to meet with Eragon, and Morzan finds a new way to fulfill his legacy.
Disclaimer: I am not Christopher Paolini, so I do not own Murtagh (darn it.), Eragon, or anyone else.
A/N: Hey, guys! I'm finally back with Morzan's Legacy!!!! I'm sorry that it took so long! I've been pretty busy lately, and I just could not get this started. I haven't been writing it for so long, that I spelled Aianna's name wrong when I wrote it for the first time! I actually had the idea on how to finish this chapter when I was either doing dishes to surprise my mom or when I was watering my bamboo plant (which is named Thorn.). But now, I finally got chapter one done and hopefully chapter two will be done shortly. Now, this is the sequel to Morzan's Curse, so I would like to take the time to say that if you haven't read that one yet, read it first. Otherwise, you will have no idea what's going on! Lol. Anyway, you can also read A New Chance at Life if you want to read a more light-hearted story. So, this takes place the night of the day that Murtagh was captured. Enjoy!
Ch. 1: A Daring Escape
The light from the setting sun flooded into the throne room, filling it with a deep red light. Morzan stood in the center, Murtagh writhing at his feet. The evil Rider's eyes were glowing as he watched his son continue to try to resist the completion of his dark spell.
"Murtagh, if you continue to resist the curse, you will die." Morzan said quietly, almost in a threatening way.
Gathering up his strength, Murtagh raised his head to look up at his father. "I don't care." he muttered weakly, trying to ignore the pain from the scar radiating from the scar on his back. "As I told you before, I would rather die than live to see your curse completed. At least I would be free from you and Galbatorix."
Sighing, Morzan stopped using the spell, leaving Murtagh gasping for breath. Then, he angrily muttered something in the Ancient Language, and Murtagh limply hit the floor, unconscious. Morzan took a deep breath and ran his hand through his dark hair. Why did his son have to be so difficult? He didn't want the boy to die sooner than he absolutely had to, so that's why he stopped trying to complete the curse when Murtagh could barely raise his head. His dark eyes then landed on the door to the throne room.
"Aianna!" he called, knowing that she was nearby. One of the twin elves was always within earshot of him so that they could do what he wanted them to do, but so they could also continue to serve Galbatorix.
Not even a full minute later, Aianna ran into the room. "Yes, Master?" she asked, using the respective title that Galbatorix was making her use. She hated calling the evil Rider "Master", but she had no choice.
Morzan glared at her. "Take Murtagh back to his room." he answered her in an order. "He'll be out for a while. I've tried a few times to complete this spell now, but he keeps resisting…"
Aianna walked forward and knelt by Murtagh's side. "Do you think that you'll ever be able to complete the spell?" she asked, not meeting the man's gaze as she tried to hide her hope. "Maybe you should just give up…"
"Give up?" Morzan whispered with venom, his eyes flaring dangerously. "That is something that I will never even think of doing. My curse will be completed someday if Murtagh wants it to be or not. I swear it."
Sighing, the elven twin took Murtagh's arm and put it around her neck, slowly lifting him to his feet. She had to support all of his weight since he was unconscious, but she still managed to pull him along with her toward the throne room door. "Make sure that Aie is out there when you leave." she heard Morzan say from behind her.
Aianna looked around her when she opened the door and saw that her twin was already in the hall, waiting for his next order. "You have to take care of Murtagh again?" Aie asked as his sister walked by him. "He's being horrible with this! I don't see why he doesn't just give in to what his father wants him to do. It would save him a lot of suffering."
"He doesn't want to become his father." Aianna answered darkly. "He's doing what he thinks is right. I think it's a brave thing to do."
Aie smirked at his sister's words. "Don't get too attached to him, Aianna." he scoffed. "You never know. We might have to kill him later."
Aianna laughed hollowly, hiding her fear at his words. "Don't worry, Aie." she replied. "I'm not going to get attached at all."
The moon hung high in the sky as Aianna silently moved down the dark hallway. She observed that it was almost full, but not completely. The night of the full moon would be tomorrow, her favorite kind of night. She looked down the hall to make sure that she was alone before she snuck down the stairs, heading for the large dungeon. She hoped that who was in there would trust her. If not, she couldn't go through with her plan…
When she slowly came up to the large door, Aianna whispered some words in the Ancient Language to unlock it. The elf listened as the heavy metal bolt slid to the side and clicked when it came to a stop. She carefully pushed open the door and stepped inside, the only thing she was able to was a large outline against the darkness of the room.
Upon seeing her, the large form made itself as big as possible to seem more threatening. What are you doing here? it demanded, its deep voice resounding around the cell.
Aianna raised her hands in front of her to show that she didn't have a weapon, trying to calm the dragon down. "Please, listen to me, Thorn." she begged quietly. "I'm trying to help you, not to harm you."
Thorn looked at her skeptically. Why do you think that I would trust you? he asked, projecting his words to her mind. You're working with Galbatorix, and now Morzan!
"Murtagh's life hangs in the balance." Aianna answered, feeling Thorn's anger radiating from the dragon. "I know you've felt some of the pain he has through your mental link, so you that what I say is true."
The dragon looked like he was about to say something, but then he sighed. He remembered how many times throughout the course of the day that he felt pain radiating from his Rider; how helpless he felt when he knew that he couldn't do anything to help him…
His next words made Aianna smile.
All right. Tell me what to do.
Xxxxxxxxxx"My legacy will be… fulfilled…"
Murtagh gasped quietly as he quickly opened his eyes. Seeing that he was alone and safe in his dark room, he sighed with relief and moved his damp hair out of his eyes. Why was he plagued with these nightmares? He wished that Thorn could be allowed to stay in his room like he used to, not locked up in one of the large dungeons…
The Rider slowly sat up and looked out the window that was above his bed at the nearly full moon that hung in the dark sky. How long had he been unconscious? Murtagh felt himself growing weaker each time his father tried to complete his spell. It was getting harder and harder for him to resist its effects.
He tried to remember what had happened the previous day. He and Eragon had come to Uru'baen to try and rescue Arya and Saphira from Galbatorix. That's when he had discovered that his father had survived along with his dragon with the help of the king's dark magic. They had all nearly escaped… until Morzan came after them. Since his father was only after him, Murtagh had decided to make a sacrifice for his brother, and he was captured to give Eragon, Arya, and Saphira time to escape. It had been an entire day since then, and his father had tried to complete his curse many times during that time period, but failed each attempt. Murtagh noticed that each time he collapsed, he was unconscious for longer periods of time. He was getting weaker.
Then, Murtagh gasped when he suddenly heard his door open. He watched as Aianna silently entered the room, smiling slightly at seeing her shocked expression when she saw that he was awake. He felt kind of bad though, since the elf had practically become his servant over the course of the day. She really wasn't as bad as when he first saw her in Ellesmera.
"Oh! Murtagh! You're awake!" she exclaimed quietly, moving over to his side.
"Barely." Murtagh commented, some humor in his voice as he looked up at her. "I don't really feel like I am."
Aianna sighed and quickly sat down next to him on the bed. "What your father's doing to you is terrible." she muttered, looking into his pale face with concern. "You're growing weaker as time goes on, I can see it by the hour. You could die soon if this continues!"
Murtagh's face darkened. "I don't know how many more of these attempts I'm going to be able to resist." he commented. "Two, maybe three at the most. Then, all of my energy will be gone, and I probably will die. But I don't think of it as a bad thing. I think of it as an escape; a way to get away from the effects of this curse, to be free from the pain that my father is inflicting upon me. At least I won't have to become like him. I couldn't let that happen. The curse can't be completed. I can't bear to think of what would happen if it were. I can't stand the thought of hurting the people that I love."
The elf listened to his words with tears glistening in her eyes. Murtagh… Aianna thought, taking a deep breath as she tried to think of what to say next. You can't die… Then, she was surprised when she saw Murtagh smiling at her.
I can hear your thoughts too, Aianna. he said to her through their minds. Just thought I'd let you know.
Aianna flushed slightly, and Murtagh laughed. "Oh." she muttered. "You can?"
"One of the benefits of being a Rider." Murtagh told her, giving her a playful smirk. "Now, is there a reason that you came here, Aianna? I hope that you didn't come here to do anything for me. I appreciate your help, but I feel horrible that you've basically become my servant since last night."
"It's not a big deal, Murtagh!" Aianna protested, giving him a smile. "You would rather have me help you than Aie. He doesn't consider you a… a…"
"Friend?" Murtagh finished, a slight smile on his face.
Aianna looked at him in surprise. How did he know what she felt about him? "Yeah." she muttered quietly. "A friend. Aie agrees with what Morzan is doing. I don't, and I fear what might happen to you." She sighed and looked up at him. "You have to get out of here."
Murtagh looked at her skeptically. "There's nothing that I want to do more than get out of here, Aianna, but how do you propose I do that?" he asked. "Morzan and Galbatorix have a close eye on me. I won't be able to get past them without help."
The Rider was surprised when he saw a sneaky smile crawl onto Aianna's face. "Don't worry." she answered. "I got you all of the help you need."
Thorn stood anxiously outside of the giant fortress, looking up at Galbatorix's castle. What was going on? Aianna had told him that they would be out by now. What was taking them so long? Now, he was wondering if he could really trust the elf… Suddenly, he gasped and turned his head to look behind him when he heard a heavy footstep from the shadows.
What are you doing out of the dungeon, Thorn? a deep voice asked as another dragon seemed to materialize out of the dark. How could you escape?
Shruikan! Thorn exclaimed, turning fully around to face the other dragon. Please! You can't tell Galbatorix that I'm out here!
Give me one reason why I shouldn't. Shruikan replied, smirking when he saw the fear in the other dragon's eyes.
Thorn desperately tried to think of what to say. If Galbatorix discovered that he was out here, then he would lose all hope of rescuing Murtagh. You weren't always like this, Shruikan! he said in a pleading way. You don't even like Galbatorix! Why do you continue to do his will?
Shruikan laughed. You always say that, Thorn, and my answer will always be the same. he muttered. I was not always like this, but I am now! Since you can't give me a reason why I shouldn't, I'll call for Galbatorix.
Dread flooded through the ruby dragon as he waited for the king to come storming outside, but he never did. Thorn risked a glance at Shruikan, and he saw that he hadn't called for his Rider yet. The large, black dragon looked back at him when he felt the red dragon's eyes on him. Do you still want to be here when I call him? he asked. I'm tired and taking my time, Thorn. I would take advantage of it.
Thorn looked at the other dragon in confusion. Why was he being this way? But then, he nodded as he disappeared into the shadows. As he made sure that he was hidden well, he thought about Shruikan's strange behavior. But another question stuck out in his mind more as he waited in the heavy night air. Where were Aianna and Murtagh?
Aianna snuck a glance around the corner into the next hallway, making sure that no one was there. Seeing that there wasn't anyone in sight, she turned her head to look behind her and silently gestured to the person with her that it was safe. Murtagh slowly entered the hallway behind her, and the two friends began to run down the length of the corridor. The Rider couldn't believe it. He didn't know how Aianna had done it, but she had somehow mapped out the perfect way to escape. His father and Galbatorix's chambers were on the other side of the fortress, and hardly any of the servants came down this dark corridor. They should be able to escape undetected.
Suddenly, Aianna gasped and pushed Murtagh against the wall so he could be hidden by the shadows. At first, he had no idea why she did what she did, but then he knew instantly when he heard footsteps approaching them. Being an elf, Aianna must have heard them first.
Aianna waited anxiously as the footsteps drew nearer, and she gave a startled gasp when a third person entered the corridor. When they walked into a sliver of moonlight, the elf clearly saw who it was. "Aie?" she whispered, almost relived to see that it was her brother and not Galbatorix or Morzan.
Aie, on the other hand, did not look pleased to see his sister. "What are you doing here this late at night?" he asked, his expression dark.
"Nothing." Aianna answered, hoping that she didn't sound nervous or rushed. She looked at her twin in confusion. Something didn't seem right about him…
The other elf didn't seem to by her answer. Aie angrily raised his hand and hit Aianna across the face. "You can't lie to me, Aianna!" he snapped, watching as his sister recoiled in fear. "What are you doing here?!"
Tears filled Aianna's dark eyes as she looked back at him. "Aie, what's wrong with you?" she asked, her hand on her face where he had struck her. "Has Galbatorix poisoned your mind so much where you would hurt me?"
Aie didn't answer her. Instead, he prepared to attack her again.
From the shadows, Murtagh watched what was happening angrily. He couldn't stand to let this happen. He had had enough.
The male twin was about to bring his hand down on Aianna again, but Murtagh's arm suddenly shot out of the shadows and grabbed his wrist before he could touch her. Aie was startled as he watched the Rider step out of the dark, his anger showing through on his face. "Murtagh!" the elf exclaimed, preparing to use his magic.
Murtagh let go of Aie's wrist and concentrated on his power as well so that he would be able to defend himself. He wasn't sure if he would be able to use magic without harming the scar on his back, but he would use it if it were absolutely necessary.
Aie angrily whispered a few words in the Ancient Language, and he sent a powerful attack at Murtagh.
The Rider dodged the attack and prepared to fire another spell back at the elf. But before he could, Aianna snuck up behind her brother and knocked him unconscious as she muttered something in the Ancient Language. Then, the elf stared down at her motionless brother as he lay at her feet, shocked about what she had just done.
Murtagh walked slowly forward and stood next to her, placing his hand comfortingly on her shoulder. "It's all right." he told her reassuringly. "You did what had to be done."
Aianna looked up at him, and Murtagh's heart wrenched when he saw tears sparkling in her eyes. "I never thought that I would hurt my own brother." she whispered in a frightened voice. "I never thought that Aie's mind would be so manipulated."
The Rider was about to say something to try to comfort her further, but something in the back of his mind told him that they shouldn't stay in the corridor. "Let's get moving." Murtagh told her, grabbing her arm and pulling her after him as he ran down the hall. "We have to move if we don't want to be discovered by anyone else."
Aianna didn't say anything as she allowed herself to be pulled along by Murtagh. She only hoped that their conflict with Aie didn't slow them down too much. She hoped that they weren't too late.
A/N: Well, that's it! It may not be the best, but I promise it will get better! Leave any questions, concerns, or comments and I'll read them! Lol! I never thought that Morzan's Curse would be so popular, but I hope that you guys enjoy this one just as much!