Summary: Princess gets abducted by Dragon. Brave Knight goes to save Princess. Brave Knight slays Dragon and saves Princess. Brave Knight falls in love with Princess. Brave Knight and Princess marry. Your usual fairytale, right? Except that in this one, Princess is a stubborn boy, Dragon is a sarcastic teenager, and Brave Knight is not so brave… AU, SLASH
Disclaimer: Still don't own
Warnings: SLASH!!! (As always) S/J, Yamis/Hikaris, T/D, Violence (mostly in later chapters) and a lemon (LATER!)
Prologue: The Curse at the copper tables
As far as anyone knew, the copper tables had existed since the beginning of time, and it was said that not even the nymphs, the oldest now living creatures, knew from where they came. Some believed the tables to have been put there by old, now forgotten gods in one last desperate attempt at being remembered. Others meant that they had always existed; that they were the very crib from where life and universe had sprung. But no one could really be sure.
The copper tables looked like four large boulders in square shape, made purely out of the metal copper. They stood in the middle of a giant circle of stone, with one table pointing at north, one at south, one at west and one at east. For as long as anyone could remember, the tables had been used during important meetings between the tribes, and it was a sacred place where enemies were never allowed to attack one another.
It was during a warm summer night that our story begins. The moon was hanging high above the earth, and at the stone tables, torches were burning; the only light in this dark night. The fire cast a magical glow over the place, making it seem even more enchanted than it already was. It was easy to understand that it was on this mystical place that an adventure and legend would begin.
They all appeared at once; the dragons from north, the mages from east, the humans from west and witch masters from south. For a couple of minutes, the different companies simply stood outside the circle, silently watching each other, some with distaste, others with gritted teeth and dutiful expressions.
Then, as one, the four clan leaders left their escorts, stepped into the circle and stood in front of the tables.
Youngest of the four was the king of mages, Atemu. He seemed to be not a day over twenty, and quite short, but still held a certain air of authority, with his spiky, black, violet and blond hair, darkly tanned skin and sharp, red eyes. Dressed in the black cape of all magicians, and with the golden eye on his forehead, he was truly a sight to behold.
Still, he looked very small beside the dragon lord.
Mordechai, king of dragons, was not only ten metres tall, but looked truly lethal with his swelling muscles, hidden beneath light blue, shimmering scales and with the huge wings folded on his back. From the top of his head, to the tip of his tail, he had small thorns that followed his neck, spine and tailbone, and ended in three large thorns at the end of his tail. Named tail was currently wrapped around his hind legs, and his front paws, with the long claws, were placed firmly in front of him. The long neck ended with a well shaped dragon head, and from that head, a pair of sapphire eyes were watching everything that was going on, both inside and outside of the circle.
To his left, the far less glamorous human emperor was standing with one hand resting relaxed on his sword handle. Emperor Quentin was dressed only in a dark blue suit and the golden crown on his head. From the crown, the ruler's diamond was shining; a contrast to his dark brown, almost black, hair. His face held the same arrogant small smile that the human emperors had held trough all times, since he knew that even during this terrible war, his land and people were safe.
The last leader, and only woman, was the witch masters' queen; Lakishma. Her long, blond hair was falling over her shoulders and all the way down to the ground, despite the fact that she had it put up in a high braid. An emerald green veil covered her whole body; the only parts of her visible were the beautiful but maniacal face, and the hair. Beneath the black eyes, small diamonds had been pressed into the skin, almost like tears that were sliding backwards, in an elegant bow, towards her ears, instead of down her cheeks. The effect was beautiful, but must have been painful. She was eyeing Mordechai with a mix of disgust and watchfulness.
Atemu was the first to break the heavy silence. He took a step forward, and bowed humbly to each and every one of his fellow clan leaders.
"I, Atemu, king of magicians, welcome you all to this meeting, and thank you for responding to my message, on this the first night of the eleventh month in the 1111th year after the union." He made a pause, and took a deep breath. "You all know why we are here: for fifty years, the war of our tribes has been raging… for fifty years innocent men and women from all tribes have been giving their lives for a cause that none of them can even remember. My father was a dear friend of yours, Quentin," he turned to look a the human emperor, "But when the Witch queen Laijla declared war against the dragon tribe, my father chose to support the dragons, and yours chose the Witch mistress's side. Now both of them have left for the next world, along with Laijla and the former dragon king, Azoth, and we, a new, young group of leaders have taken their place."
He paused, and after taking one good look at the other two leaders he turned to the dragon lord. With an encouraging nod he stepped back to let Mordechai speak. The dragon didn't even have to rise, but sat at the exact same spot as he spoke in soft, dark growls.
"My wife has just given birth to my second son, and I do not wish for my children to grow up in times of war. My oldest have already begun his training, but I do not want him to use his skills to kill humans, or witches. I believe Atemu already said most of what I think, so I'd only like to add this: we are all new leaders, and we have been given a chance to end what our predecessors began. Let us take that chance. Let us unite once again, as brothers and sisters, in honour and a new union. I know that none of us truly want this war."
As Mordechai ended his speech, silence fell heavily over the circle. From outside of it, their respective companies were watching in silence.
"So in short," Emperor Quentin concluded at last, "this is a peace offering."
"This is so much more than that," Atemu answered. "We're also offering a chance to start over and forget this dark time between the tribes. I would very much like to resume the friendship our fathers shared before the war."
Quentin seemed to think about this, but before he could speak once more, Lakishma interrupted him.
"I am," she began, with a voice as cold as ice, "deeply insulted by this pathetic offering."
Atemu's crimson eyes widened, and he opened his mouth to speak, but the witch mistress raised her hand to silence him.
"Fist of all, you are talking as if you knew anything about me. You say that the people dying in the war can't remember what they are fighting for, which is a grave lie when it comes to my people. Every man, woman and child know why we are fighting; to terminate those… reptiles who dare think that they have a place in the union, and believe that they are equals to us."
She spoke the word "reptiles" with deep contempt, and combined it with a repulsed glance at Mordechai.
"Second of all," she continued, "you say that none of us want this war, when my whole kind is ready to fight, bleed and die, just to see the day when those monsters, those abnormalities, are completely exterminated."
Suddenly, Mordechai stood up and spread his wings wide. The growl coming from his throat spoke of power and the ability to inflict pain.
"So that is your opinion?" He growled. "What a shame; I came here tonight with the hopes of speaking to a sane person, who understand how completely pointless this war is. But now I understand that it wasn't just Laijla who was insane. Your whole kind is!"
"How dare you!" Lakishma shrieked and took a step towards the dragon. Her eyes were burning with insanity and rage, whereas his were cold and controlled. "How dare you insult my people!? Your kind isn't even a people. You are some kind of weak link, and undeserving of as much as walking the same earth as us. You should have been our cattle! That would have been your rightful place!"
Atemu suddenly stepped in between the dragon and the witch mistress.
"The dragon tribe has shown more than once that they deserve their place in the union," he warned Lakishma. "But can't you see that your racist options are killing innocent people from all tribes? Can't you-"
"And you…" Lakishma hissed and glared at Atemu. "Your weak, peace-loving people might as well die with the reptiles. If you side with them, you are not more human than them!"
"Enough!" Mordechai roared.
"Yes!" Lakishma shrieked. "It is enough! I am tired of having to show any kind of respect to a creature that stands lower than my dogs! I am tired of this endless talk about peace and no bloodshed! I am tired of the cowardice that you dare call 'honour'! I will end it all right here, tonight!"
After that, all hell broke loose. Lakishma sent a lightning bolt at Mordechai, but the large dragon fended it of with a single swoop of his wing. The rest of the companies came rushing into the ring to protect their respective leaders. Lakishma began chanting some sort of spell, and dark magic gathered like a thick fog around her.
"Stop her!" Atemu yelled to one of his generals, a large man with silver hair and a scar on one cheek. "I don't know what she is planning, but we have to stop her before she strikes!"
The captain nodded, and both he and the king himself gathered shadow magic around them, protected by the other mages, who were busy fending of human and witch attacks.
She came from out of nowhere: one of the Witch mistress's youngest bodyguards, with golden blond hair, and eyes as black as the queen's. She launched two powerful attacks, one from her left hand, and the other from her right one. The black beams seemed to pass through all the other mages, and hit the king and his general squarely in the chest.
With one last pained scream, not only them, but all of the mages, disappeared in a cloud of dark.
At the sight of his young friend and confidant disappearing in a cloud of black fire, Mordechai had had enough. He lost his control.
"Kill them," he ordered his fellow dragons, and in the next moment, he took a deep breath and opened his mouth at the Witches. Fire erupted from his throat and hit six of the witched in the face. They fell to the ground screaming in agony. Within the span of two minutes, they were dead.
With a mighty roar, the dragons threw themselves forward, ready to tear and kill their enemies.
Then suddenly something flashed outside of the stone circle, and in the next moment, every single dragon froze in the middle of their movements, unable to as much as blink.
Mordechai's sharp eyes darted around the circle in search for the cause of their disability to move. The stones of the circle had begun to glow dimly green, and on the ground beneath him, old runes were glowing.
It had been a trap from the start! The witches must have visited the Copper tables a few hours before the meeting and set up a magical trap. They had never even thought about any peace offering. And now Atemu was dead, and he himself left at the hands of his worst enemy.
"I see you've finally figured it out," Lakishma cackled happily. The dark magic had made her feet leave the ground, and she was now floating in the air at about the same height as Mordechai's head. "You see? My kind will always be superior to yours!"
Mordechai's eyes darted to the human emperor and his fellowship, which was now standing outside of the ring, watching without making a move. Mordechai's heart sank as he realised that Quentin must have known about her plans all along.
"Relax; you will get to see your female and beloved cubs again. I am not going to kill you," Lakishma assured him. "I want my victory over you to be complete. Once I do slay you, monster, you will have nothing left. You will beg me for death, since it will be the only way for you to see your family again."
Even though Mordechai couldn't move his jaws, a growl rumbled deep in his chest, dark and threatening.
If you touch my family…
The rest of Lakishma's witch company, standing beneath her, was starting to grow impatient.
"Enough talk, mistress. Just do it!"
"Come on, my queen, we want to see them suffer!"
"Show them what powerless animals they truly are!"
"Avenge our fallen sisters!"
The insane queen looked down at her court and smiled almost lovingly. Then she looked up at Mordechai again with smug satisfaction.
"I agree with my servants," she said. "Besides, I can barely contain myself."
The black magic thickened even more around her as she levitated a few feet higher. She raised her hands and face towards the dark, starlight sky and spoke, in deep, commanding tones:
"I, Lakishma, daughter of Laijla, heiress of the witch throne, and mistress of black magic, am calling on the higher powers to aid me this night!"
Mordechai had desperately been trying to fight of the bonds holding him, but stiffened when he heard Lakishma's words.
Lakishma lowered her hands and looked at Mordechai again, with the same pleased smile as before.
"On this the first night of the eleventh month, in the 1111th year after the union, I, Lakishma, daughter of Laijla, place a curse upon you, dragon lord Mordechai, and you whole kind." When she saw the dawning fear in his eyes, her smile widened. "You told me your wife had just given birth to your second son. He will be the last cub ever born into the dragon clan. This is your curse, impossible to break until the day when one of my kind freely gives their blood for a dragon. So it has been said, so it will be done."
The magic around her completely exploded. Small shadowy figures danced in the air, along with the songs, laughter and whispers of ancient evil spirits. It seemed to fill the air, make it thicker, exploded in eyes, ears, mouths and noses of everyone present. It danced and floated through the night in complete chaos and perfect synch at the same time, threatened to swallow everything whole with one single try.
And then silence.
Lakishma silently floated down to the ground again, and was taken into the arms of her faithful servants. She raised her head once more and looked at Mordechai.
"It has been done," she stated lazily. "Goodbye, dragon. Next time I see you, it will be to separate your head from your body."
One of the witches whispered a silent spell, and with a soft wind, they all faded away and disappeared. Left were the dragons, unmoving in the middle of the circle, and the human company, which had turned and was silently walking away from the scene.
It took two more hours for the spell to fade away, and during those hours, Mordechai and the rest of his escort had to listen to the silent whispers, still lingering in the air.
On the first nigh of the eleventh month…
Place a curse upon you…
Your whole kind…
Last child ever born into…
Freely gives their blood…
So it will be…
So it will be…
So it will be done…
Wow, how many of you out there have heard "Can't take it in" by Imogen Heap. It's the soundtrack to The chronicles of Narnia. I listened to it while I was writing this story, and DAMN did it inspire me! Awesome song! Listen to it!!!
For me it's really important to listen to music while writing. It can help you get over writer's blocks and everything. Seriously, it's a great source of inspiration! I wouldn't have finished any of my stories if I hadn't had some sort of inspiring music in the back ground!
Okay, enough with the commercials! Hope you liked it this far. I know it doesn't make much sense right now, but don't worry, it will, very soon, this was only a prologue, after all. Write a review and tell me what you think! Reviews make an author's earth spin!!!
"Chapter one: A birthday to remember," coming up soon!