Chapter 5: An Agenda Well-hidden

Malefor didn't go out as long as he was grounded but he kept himself occupied by reading the history of his father's rise to power as well as translating the manuscripts using a dictionary of ancient Draconic words he found in a hidden part of the library.

"This is interesting. I never knew such words could have multiple meanings. Let's see now…" Malefor traced his claw over the words and deciphered it using the dictionary.

He wrote the meanings on another piece of paper for easy reference. To the surprise of his mentor, he could actually make full translations with meanings close to the actual ones.

"I'm surprised, Malefor. Who knew that you can actually do such translations so well despite being a young dragon," Val'thir said.

"It was nothing," Malefor said.

Val'thir inspected his works and nodded his head, impressed with Malefor's handiwork.

"Why are you doing this anyway? What's the sudden interest?" Val'thir asked.

"It's a secret," Malefor winked.

"Nobody hides a secret from me. Tell me what it is, boy," Val'thir said.

Malefor shook his head defiantly.

"I have my right to keep my secret and this is one secret I will keep. However, I will tell you that I am interested in translating that manuscript. There is something about it that I want to know," Malefor said while pointing at the dusty manuscript.

Val'thir looked at it and nodded.

"I see…and you're not going to tell me?" Val'thir asked.

"Nope," was Malefor's reply.

Val'thir nodded again and headed for the room door.

"Do not try to escape or your father will give you a punishment worse than being grounded. You may do whatever you like here but no going outside." Val'thir warned and went out from the room.

Malefor continued doing his research until it was midnight. By then, he already translated half of the manuscript.

"Not bad for starter. I never knew I had it in me," Malefor said smilingly.

He took the translated writings and read it, trying to understand what was being translated.

"Hmm…ancient dragons fear an unknown beast that many think came from the realm of Convexity. Lucifer once used it and nearly destroyed the world. It was prophesized that the next one to resurrect the beast will be the one who has lost his loved ones, who has a broken heart and most importantly, one that is living with a family of evil. It can be anyone ranging from the most famous to the least known of dragons and only dragons will have the ability to resurrect the beast known as the Destroyer. Fires will burn and the world will splinter into many as the Destroyer finishes its trip around Vetus Terra. Only one can stop it…but that one dragon may also be the one to resurrect it…that doesn't make sense. It's rather contradictory," Malefor muttered.

He checked the dictionary again and again but that was the closest meaning he can get. It baffled him but he set it aside. Maybe the other half of the manuscript may offer a clue. After eating his dinner and keeping mum about the "assignment" he was doing from his father, Malefor went to his room to read some books before going to sleep. During his deep sleep, Malefor dreamt about the memory he saw when he emerged from the ancient river. This time, it revealed more. He saw the black dragoness named Lucy being burnt to death by a powerful dark flame but Malefor couldn't see who fired that fatal fireball.

"No," Malefor muttered.

He then found himself surrounded by darkness with many hands trying to grab him and rip him to pieces. Malefor struggled but for the first time, he felt weak and there was no way he could fight back. Just as he thought he was going to die from all the tugging and pulling, the scene warped and Malefor was standing on top of a high mountain that overlooked the world. It was on fire and the Destroyer was wading through the swamps before making its way to Warfang.

"W-what is this?" Malefor asked himself.

"This is something that may happen in the near future," someone said.

Malefor turned his head around and saw a dark purple dragon standing behind him, his eyes yellow and full of malice.

"Who are you?" Malefor asked with a frightened growl.

The dragon just smiled and bared its sharp teeth.

"I am your dark side, your desire for dominance…your own self," the dragon said.

Malefor couldn't believe what he just heard. He took a few steps back in fear.

"No…it's not true. It's not true!" he yelled.

Malefor slipped and fell off the mountain. He hit the ground with a loud thud but he wasn't dead. Slowly, Malefor got up groggily and watched the Destroyer walk by him, moving back a bit before he got crushed by the massive legs. Behind him, the purple dragon landed down gracefully and folded his wings.

"Isn't that thing a beauty?" the dragon asked.

"You maniac, you're going to destroy the world with that thing!" Malefor yelled while pointing angrily at the Destroyer.

"That is the purpose of purple dragons, young Malefor. We bring about the great cleansing of the world and the Destroyer is our tool. You will soon find out on how to resurrect it," the dragon said darkly.

"Why me? I don't want any of this. I'm not evil, Kaoru said so!" Malefor shot back angrily.

"Kaoru this, Kaoru that. You naïve fool, Kaoru is no one and she's nothing but a stumbling block! One of these days, she'll betray your feelings," the dragon thundered.

"I refuse to believe you! You're trying to manipulate me, aren't you? Well, it won't work! I know myself better than you do! You're not the future me; you're a maniac!" Malefor said loudly amidst the death and destruction going on.

"Suit yourself, Malefor, but don't say that you've not been warned," the dragon said and leapt towards Malefor with claws ready.

Malefor brought up his arms to shield himself from the attack but none came. The scene changed again and this time, she saw Kaoru lying dead in the middle of a burning town square.

"Kaoru!" Malefor yelled and tried to reach out to her.

She turned her head to face Malefor with a lifeless expression. Malefor stopped dead in his tracks as he saw that.

"Why…" she muttered mournfully.

Malefor let out a scream and woke up suddenly with his paws curled into a fist. He looked around his room, his eyes darting back and forth quickly, as if expecting a zombie to jump out at him. All he heard was the cold wind blowing into his room through the window, the curtains flapping eerily like white specters. Malefor was panting and he forced himself to calm down.

"It was only a dream…a bizarre one if I must add," Malefor said to himself.

He looked at the manuscript on the table beside his bed and shook his head.

"It's only a damn dream. It cannot be real…it shouldn't be real. I'm only having a nightmare," Malefor mumbled.

He looked at the sky. It was still dark and the moons were at their peak. He didn't feel like sleeping now so he lit the candles and decided to entertain himself by reading a book called Mystery of the Apocalypse. It was a mystery book laced with elements of horror so he quickly kept the book and took another one to read. Somehow, all books had elements of horror and that really pissed him off. It was as if his father was trying to scare him when he's at his weakest.

"Stupid horror books," Malefor growled.

He went back to bed and set there for a while, letting the flicker of candles hypnotize him to sleep. It worked and soon enough, Malefor felt drowsy and he fell back onto his pillow, sleeping soundly. Thankfully, the nightmare did not occur again and Malefor had a peaceful sleep. The next day, Malefor spent his free time doing translations again but this time, it wasn't as easy as it seems.

"This…I don't get it at all. It's far tougher than I thought," Malefor said.

He drummed his claws on the table and was deep in thought. After a while, he put down the quill and sighed angrily.

"Fine, I'll deal with you later," Malefor said.

Thinking of nothing else better to do around, he decided to play a prank on his mentor. Malefor crept towards the balcony outside his room and peeked over it. He saw Val'thir standing right below the balcony, talking to a bone guard. Malefor took a basin of water and dragged it to the balcony.

"He'll never see this coming," Malefor said with a gleam in his right eye.

Malefor hefted the basin over the balcony and poured out the water. After five seconds, the water splashed and Malefor heard Val'thir screaming.

"Heh, bull's-eye," Malefor grinned and chuckled secretly.

He had nothing to do after that and he loathed being bored. It was playtime but again, he reminded himself that he was grounded. Although he stuck to his conscience, Malefor couldn't take it anymore after half an hour. He snuck out of the castle and ran towards the playground without being seen by the guards. He saw the four dragon friends playing soccer.

"What took you so long? We needed a referee," Cyril said.

"Sorry but I got locked up a bit. So, what's the plan?" Malefor asked.

"We're playing soccer but we're short of a referee. Can you help us keep score?" Terrador asked.

"If it doesn't involve getting hurt, I'm cool with it," Malefor said.

"Great, that should do. Let's start the game all over again so we can keep score on the real score rather than thinking that you've scored a goal when you clearly didn't," Terrador said while looking at Cyril.

"What?!" Cyril asked defensively.

They started the game when Ignitus had called more dragons to play soccer. However, Malefor did not dare linger long and he left before sunset. On his way back, he met Kaoru waiting under a tree.

"Who are you waiting for?" Malefor asked.

"Umm…my father," Kaoru said without looking at Malefor.

Malefor looked at her and scratched his head. Kaoru didn't look happy and her eyes seem to tell Malefor of an untold sorrow.

"You look sad. Did something happen to you?" Malefor asked.

"Look, just stay away from me from now on. My parents will not tolerate you being close to me. As much as I want to be close to you, I can't," Kaoru sniffed.

"Oh…that's sad," Malefor said.

"My father isn't happy and he'll be arriving soon. You better go. Until the day we can meet again, please promise me that you won't forget me," Kaoru said.

Malefor bit his lower lip and nodded.

"Well, in that case…I'll see you later…maybe…after many years, I dunno," Malefor said sadly.

He hated losing friends because she was the only dragoness he knew that was kind enough to approach him and make friends with him, even though she was afraid of him initially. They were friends for like only a few days and now, they can't see each other. It reminded Malefor of a romance story written by one William Shakespear…or was it William Shakesword…whoever he was he was definitely a well-known writer from Novus Terra.

"By the Ancestors, why me?" Malefor lamented.

He felt someone tap his shoulder. It was Volteer and he looked concerned.

"Malefor, I can't help but feel that you're disturbed by something. You weren't exactly enjoying yourself today and what's with the lamenting? You're really a drama queen," Volteer smiled.

"You wouldn't understand what's going on. I feel so irritated that I want to scream and burn everyone," Malefor said.

"You're still a young dragon like the rest of us. How can you be so depressed? If you're as old as an adult dragon, I don't blame you," Volteer said kindly.

"I'm no old dragon but I'm being plagued with anger for some reason," Malefor said.

Volteer turned his head and saw a sad-looking Kaoru sitting under a pine tree. He then nodded and smiled slyly at the purple dragon.

"I see…so you broke up with someone you loved eh," Volteer said.

"Look, she and I are only friends, not lovers or something," Malefor said irately.

"Of course," Volteer remarked dryly.

Malefor sighed and looked at Volteer.

"I need to go home. My father will skin me alive if he knows that I snuck out without his permission," Malefor said.

"You mean you…" Volteer said and stopped halfway.

"Yes, Volteer, I came out without permission. I'm just feeling bored so I thought I join you guys in a game," Malefor said.

"Ah, that is understandable but…I still don't understand why you're sad," Volteer muttered.

Malefor smiled weakly at Volteer and looked in front of him.

"That is something I'd rather keep a secret," said Malefor and walked away from Volteer.

A/N: Sorry for the slow upload. I wasn't feeling very well when I wrote this so I had to delay it for a while.