Disclaimer: Dear readers,
A while back, a friend and I decided to create a fanfic involving the Kharlan War and everything else that goes with it. But it seems that someone had beat us to the punch. HeroR has been weaving the same tale for a couple of months. But rather than waste a month's worth of brainstorming; we've decided to post the story.
We'll be honest: we've never seen the OVA's; Only one of us has played Dawn of the New World; and TEAM_DERRICK is my creative consultant. In fact, he's writing this disclaimer. If you're unfamiliar with his work, well... "Misty's Search for Self Realization" is just an extended fart joke. So yeah....
Well whatever. BE WARNED! CREATIVE LIBERTIES WERE TAKEN!!!! We could just come up with some half assed reasons for some of our plot points, like how history is forgotton after 4,000 or that Yggdrasil warped his tale around, but to be honest we just want to tell a good story.
All credit to Namco Bandai.
Once upon a time,
Humankind built a great empire
That spanned the entire world.
But the arrival of the Elves and their magic
Caused jealousy in humans, so they built great machines
To use it for themselves.
The machines engulfed the world in the fires of war
As two competing human nations
Grappled for one thousand years.
Just when the fighting seemed fiercest,
And there would be no end,
A prophet told the world of a half-elven youth
Who would, one day, save the world.
Fresh fallen snow dampened the thunder of the army as it drew nearer the tiny, landlocked Flanoir. They had waited until the blizzard had subsided before mobilizing on the secluded village, had it gone on any longer, Tyr would have forced his troops to move through the storm anyway.
What a pathetic little town, Tyr thought to himself. He hated the snow, hated ice, hated anything below warm, but, as coming here was his own order, he kept his gripes to himself. The Valkyries at his back, however, had no such qualms about voicing their unhappiness. Ordinarily, Tyr would have beaten the first soldier to complain, but the less than desirable conditions put him in a charitable mood, so he let them complain. A week's march across the tundra after spending nearly a month posted guarding a savage beast? Well, Tyr was lucky morale was where it was.
Besides, his army was there mainly for show; Tyr preferred fighting his opponents one-on-one, though he hadn't since he lost his arm. He wondered if he would ever be as good as he used to be.
In any case, the chances of Flanoir resisting his army even a little were slim: the village was tiny, the people poor and beset by frigid temperatures year-round, and any news that reached them was months out of date. Advances in technology were even slower reaching this frozen hell. Tyr allowed himself a single glance back at the magitech cannons the lumbered along with his army. A single shot would force them to submission. No one even has to die.
A sharp pain coursed through his body, and a hand went instinctively to the stump of his arm. When he pulled it away, there where a few drops of sticky blood."Damn," he swore, and uttered a shirt healing spell. That would patch it up for now.
At the edge of town, Tyr called for his troops to halt. He paused a moment longer to allow the cannons to check their alignment before marching proudly into town. Flanoir was small enough that everyone could see the stranger from his or her home. What little activity that existed in this subzero climate ceased with the coming of Tyr.
"Attention, citizens of Flanoir! I am Tyr! I am seeking the so-named 'Prophet of Flanoir'!" No one stirred. No one spoke. It was as though the snow had absorbed all of their voices. "Turn her over to me at once, or face the consequences."
"Wha-What are you going to do with her?" someone asked.
"That is not any of your concern." Tyr signaled his troops to warm up one of the cannons.
"Y-Yes it is!" The woman who spoke before stepped forward timidly. "I won't let you see her until-ah!"
A ball of rainbow energy arced over the sleepy town. Everyone shut his or her eyes as its light reflected off the snow, not wishing to go blind. When Tyr blinked his eyes open, the woman was shaking, as was everyone else. Even humans could feel the amount of mana contained in that blast; to Tyr, it was like a supernova exploding in his skull.
"I have enough firepower to grind this piss-poor excuse for a town into dust, and my troops have gone quite some time without seeing a woman"-some of his troops let out yelps of agreement-"and won't be held accountable for their actions." He paused to let that sink in. "Now, take me to the prophet at once! I will not ask again!"
For a moment, it appeared that she would stand her ground, shaken and all, but then he saw the fight vanish from her, and she stood less tall. "Follow me."
Tyr gave another signal to his Valkyries to surround the town. No one was going to escape.
"…Grandma?" The young woman – Adelle was her name – opened the cottage door cautiously and peered inside. "Grandma Mimir?"
"Yes, Adelle? Who's that with you?" A frail looking old woman sat bundled in layers beside an iron stove. "Who have you brought to me?"
"I am Tyr, one of the Five Jotnar."
"I can't say that I've ever heard of you, young man." The old woman looked up from the fire, allowing Tyr to see that her eyes were glazed over, milky white. She was blind. "Ah, yes. I know who you are."
Tyr stepped closer. "How can you see me?"
"I See you, but I do not see you." Her eyes shifted to focus on the crackling fire before her. "And I know why you are here. Come. Sit." She beckoned him forward. Tyr moved slowly, cautiously, and took a seat around the stove. Adelle sat close to her grandmother.
Tyr studied the two women; Adelle seemed to gain back her formally lost courage now that Tyr was in her house, and she in the company of her grandmother. "What's that on your hand?" She pointed to the jewel on the top of his exposed hand, surrounded by runes.
"Nothing." He pulled his hand into the folds of his robes. "You said you knew why I was here?"
"Yes," Mimir said "you are here about the young half-elf I prophesized." Her non-seeing eyes locked with his, and he got the distinct impression that she could see into his very soul.
"Yes. I need to know where this half-elf is. Tell me where to find him."
Mimir stared at him for a moment before, "I'm afraid I can't tell you that."
Faster than thought, Tyr was on his feet and holding the old prophet by her robes off the floor, with one arm. "Listen you old hag, I don't have time for your prophecy-riddle-bullshit. Tell me where the kid is, or I'll burn down the whole damn town, and take everyone with it!" He shook her violently.
"Grandma!" Adelle rushed to her aid, but a swift kick from Tyr sent her back to the floor.
"Leave my granddaughter alone!" the old woman protested.
"If you don't tell me what I want to know, your granddaughter will be the least of your worries." On cue, the sound of a magitech cannon shot thundered through the air, followed by the unmistakable sound of wood exploding. Screams rose in the brief silence, some of them dying by the sound of it.
"Very well," she consented.
"Grandma, no!" Adelle protested weakly. She struggled to her knees, but got no further.
"Let's go," Tyr adjusted his grip on Mimir so she was under his arm, and left the house. Adelle tried to follow but was too weak.
A Valkyrie was waiting for Tyr. He thrust the old woman into his arms. "Put her in the carriage, we're taking her back to Svatalfaheim."
Once he was out of sight, Tyr called another lieutenant. "Destroy it all. Burn everything."
"Yes sir. What about the people?"
"Hmm…take them with us." The Valkyrie saluted and ran off to order the troops below him. "We are running low on exspheres," Tyr added with a sneer.
Two weeks later…
"…Still asleep, Mithos?"
"Hm?" Mithos Yggdrasill lazily opened one eye to find he was standing with a chunk of break hanging out of his mouth. "Oh." He hastily chewed the food, and then poured himself a glass of water. "Guess I am."
"Didn't you sleep last night?" Martel stooped down to be on her brother's level. "Did you have those dreams again?"
"More like nightmares," Mithos recalled the frightful visions that had visited his dreams every night for the past week. "But they feel real."
"It feels like something bad is coming to Heimdall, Martel. That's what the dreams said, anyway."
"Maybe you should talker to Eir," she offered. It pained her to see her brother troubled so.
"Elder Eir? Not likely she'd listen to me, I'm just a kid." What he was really saying was I'm just a half-elf.
"Mithos…" Martel impulsively hugged her brother. "Don't give up on people, you're too young to be cynical. People can change. People will change – humans and elves."
Mithos let his sister embrace him, but didn't return the sentiment. When she finally let him go, he said, "But they made us. Our blood is half human, half elf. Why won't either side accept us?"
"They let us live here, in Heimdall. They could have thrown us out after mom died, but they didn't. Remember that, please?"
"I know. I will, Martel." This time he hugged his sister.
"Thank you Mithos."
"Martel?" Mithos said a minute later.
"I think maybe I will go tell Elder Eir."
"The dreams were powerful. I don't think I'm a Seer or anything, but I think I need to tell her about them, just in case."
"Alright, I can see it's troubling you. Go on then," Martel urged.
"I won't be long!" He raced out the door.
Although it was approaching noon, the sun was just beginning to break through the trees of Ymir and Torrent. The town was always cool and shady, even in the summer months. Mithos loved it here, despite the air of hostility that followed him wherever he went.
As per the usual custom, elves shot him dirty looks whenever he happened to walk by. Martel never let it get to her, but Mithos always nearly crumbled under the weight of all those looks. Today he tried to resist, but then he was shuffling along, staring at the ground again. Whatever was in those looks, they always made him feel ashamed of being a half-elf, even though he knew perfectly well it wasn't his fault.
He almost turned back, but be was already at the Elder's house. Two sentries stood guard outside. "What do you want?" One of them asked.
"I-I-I…" Mithos was trembling under their gaze. Why? "I n-n-need t-to sp-speak…"
"Spit it out, boy!" The other sentry shouted, which only served to make the boy even more nervous.
"IneedtospeakwiththeElder!" It came out in one excited yelp, but it conveyed the message.
"I need to speak with Elder Eir, um, please?"
The one guard glanced over at his companion. Both emitted a contentious snort. "The Elder doesn't speak to half-elves."
"But, but it's important! I really need to-"
"What you really need to do is go home and think about how lucky you are to be living in this village still."
"What? There's no law that says I can't live here!" Mithos shouted back. A previously untapped confidence was welling up inside him. "I have just as much right to be here as you do!"
The one guard looked condescendingly offended. "Don't you dare compare yourself to me! I am a pureblood Elf, untainted by any human blood. The law of this land is that this is a village for Elves only, not humans."
"I'm an Elf, just…"
"Half-elf. Not full-Elf. Maybe your elf blood can stay here, but your human blood can't."
The other guard took a step forward. "So take the hint: go home." They way he said it suggested he meant get out. Mithos stepped back, but both guards suddenly advanced on him.
"That's enough!" Both guards flinched and turned around. "What is going on?" Elder Eir demanded.
"N-Nothing, Elder. We were just-"
"Enough. Back to your posts. ." The aging elf turned her gaze on each of the guards until the complied and took their places on either side of the door. Then she turned it on Mithos. "Well? What do you want?" She tapped her foot impatiently.
"Can I- can I speak with you?" he asked nervously.
"Oh, very well." She ushered him in and waited expectantly. "Well?" she said again.
"I-uh… I think something is going to happen to Heimdall. Something…bad." He avoided looking her in the eyes.
"Oh? Why do thin that?"
"Because…" Only now did he realize how ridiculous it sounded. But it was too late to take it back. "Because I saw it in my dreams."
"You saw it in your dreams." She repeated it, as if deciding whether it felt right on her tongue.
"I know it sounds bad, and I'm not claiming to be a Seer, but…" He glanced up at her; she had one eyebrow raised expectantly. "I really think something bad is going to happen."
Eir massaged her temples. "Look, Mithos. Thanks for your concern, but I think it's best if you just go on home."
"What? Aren't you going to do anything?"
"What can I do? You said it yourself: you're no Seer. Besides, What is there to be done? You haven't offered up any details, just a bad feeling. It's not a lot to go on. And even if it was, it would do me no good to go on the word of a…child." She narrowly avoided saying half-elf, but Mithos knew she wanted to say it.
"That's enough," she snapped. "I thank you for your concern, but you should go home."
Mithos contemplated arguing further, but thought better of it. He left in a huff.
"Aw, so sorry she didn't listen to you!" one of the guards jeered as he walked away.
"Come back again when you're a real elf!" the other added.
Tears sprang to his eyes, and Mithos ran. He didn't run home. Instead he headed into the Torent Forest, for the deepest part, where the shrine for Origin was erected. When he arrived, he was crying. He collapsed on the ground. "Origin, help me," he pleaded.
"This the place?" A Valkyrie lieutenant asked his commanding Jotnar.
"Yeah, this is the place." Tyr picked his way through the marsh that surrounded the Elven village of Heimdall. Damn the Elves and their seclusion, he cursed them silently. "How much longer through this marsh, Freyja?"
"Not much further, Tyr." Unlike him, Freyja possessed both of her arms still. She was attractive, he was not afraid to admit. Blond hair, blue eyes, even those damn pointy ears. And the glasses…
"…Hey!" Freyja shoved him lightly.
"I was talking to you just now," she gave him a reproachful look. He had been staring at her again, and she knew it.
"Oh, uh… sorry." He avoided her gaze. "So, uh, what were you saying?"
Freyja sighed heavily and kept quiet for a few minutes before, "You have to admire the Elves, going to great lengths to stay away from the rest of the world."
"Don't tell me you've fallen in with their crowd," Tyr said jokingly. "I mean, look at this swamp! You'd think someone would build a few wooden paths or something…"
"Not if they don't want visitors, they won't."
"Yeah, I suppose…"
Freyja stole a glance at the conceled stub of his left arm. "How is it?" she asked.
"Fine," he said curtly. "I try not to let it bother me."
They trudged on for another couple of minutes before a scout returned. He informed the two Jotnar that Heimdall was only a few hundred yards ahead.
"I think I'll go in with you this time, Tyr," Freyja said casually.
"Because, last time you went in alone, you destroyed the town."
"I had my orders," he said indignantly. Freyja grinned but went with him anyway.
He's been gone an awfully long time, Martel thought as she paced the house, waiting for Mithos to return. I wonder what happened to him. She made to go after him, but stopped when a booming voice echoed through the town.
"Attention citizens of Heimdall! We are Tyr and Freyja! We come looking for the half-elf boy that lives among you. Turn him over to us immediately or we will set our soldiers loose upon your town!"
"Mithos!" Martel whispered.
"We have no quarrel with you Elves!" This time a female voice spoke. "But if you do not deliver the half-breed to us, we will raze this village to the ground!"
Martel risked a peek outside. The two that spoke (obviously the highest rank) stood in the middle of the village, alone. Beyond the trees, Martel could sense a gathered army, small, but enough to take Heimdall. They weren't bluffing.
She snuck out the back door and crept around between houses, desperate to find Mithos before they did. But when Elder Eir came out of her house and began shouting at the two, she knew Mithos was gone; Eir would not have hesitated to turn her brother over to them. Even if they hadn't brought an army with them, she would use it as an excuse to get rid of him.
For a moment, she panicked, before remembering Mithos's favorite spot to be alone. Making sure she wasn't being followed, Martel backed silently away from the village center and towards Torent Forest. She knew the way, all elves did, but the path was deliberately confusing to anyone not already familiar with it. Many paths led in circles, and some to dead ends. There was only one way through, and only one destination.
Martel found Mithos laying on the ground, staring at the slab that supposedly held the summon spirit Origin. "Mithos, what are you doing here?"
"Talking to Origin," he said absently.
"What? No, Mithos! We have to get out of here!"
"Two people showed up in town, with an army! They're looking for you!"
Mithos sat up. "Looking for me? Why?"
"I don't know! They said they wanted the half-elven boy who lived here! That's you!" She pulled him to his feet and started dragging him. "Come on, we have to leave!"
"I told you already, I don't know where Mithos is!" Elder Eir shouted at Tyr and Freyja.
"Then I'm afraid we'll have to carry out our threat. I'm very sorry," Tyr said with mock apology. Freyja, if you please?"
Freyja sighed, but signaled the Valkyries forward. A group of Elves gathered in front of the approaching army, obviously intent on resisting. "Stand aside," Freyja told them. "If you value you lives, stand aside!"
But the Elves did not stand aside; a volley of fireballs and thunderbolts smacked into the Valkyries. Only a few troops went down, and even then only stunned. The rest held their ground and retaliated with shots from hand-held magitech cannons; they shot faster than the Elves could cast more magic. The squad moved on, with no casualties.
Horrified, Elder Eir called out to the rest of her people, "Stand down! Don't fight them! They'll kill you!"
Confused, the Elves stepped aside, and let the Valkyries pillage and burn their homes. In minutes the whole village was engulfed in fire, and the Valkyries began filing out of the village.
"Let that be a lesson to you!" Tyr announced. "You do not harbor half-elves from the Jotnar! We will return tomorrow with the same request. If you do not comply, we will begin taking lives!" With that, he and Freyja followed the Valkyries out into the Ymir.
Finally free to act, the Elves set to work putting out the fires with water spells, and rebuilding homes destroyed by the fires. A small group gathered up the thirteen dead Elves and took them away to be buried.
Mithos and Martel watched from the trees. "They…they did this because they were looking for me…" Mithos whispered, horrified.
"Hush Mithos, we don't want anyone to find us!"
"But they…they killed them."
"I know, sweetie, but right now we've got to go!"
She pulled her brother along once more, leading him through the thick undergrowth, away from Heimdall. She thought they were going to make it out when she felt a tug on her arm. "Not now Mithos, we're almost-hey!" It wasn't Mithos that had tugged on her arm, it was an Elf. Another stood a few feet away, holding Mithos. "Found ya," the Elf said.
"Elder Eir wants to see the two of you," the other sneered.
"You can't just give him over to those people!" Martel protested. They two burly Elves and basically carried them back to the house of Elder Eir.
"It's not fair!"
"Fair?" Eir mocked. "Fair? I'll you what's not fair! It's not fair that the whole village was burned to the ground! It's not fair that thirteen Elves were killed today! It's not fair that all of this happened because those people wanted you, boy, and we couldn't give you to them!"
"Would you really have given him over to them?" Martel struggled against her captor's grip, but only half-heartedly.
"To save the village? Yes, I would handed the boy over immediately." Eir looked her straight in the eyes and said that. "Wouldn't you?"
The question caught Martel off guard. One life for hundreds? "Well, I…"
"There, you see?" Eir paused for a moment. "You can't stay here. You have to leave." She was speaking to Mithos.
"What? Where are we going to go?" Mithos spoke, the first he'd spoken since Tyr and Freyja arrived.
"It doesn't matter to me. I wouldn't be able to live with myself if I simply handed you over to those two. Maybe if I was human…but my life is too long to deal with that. The important thing is that you leave. Now."
Neither Mithos nor Martel had anything to say.
"Take to the edge of town," she told the two Elves. When they returned, she said, "Send a message to Tyr and Freyja. Tell them Mithos escaped our grasp and was seen heading East. Towards Evet."
And there you have it. Please R&R, and BE HONEST! If something sucks, tell me.
If it starts to look like a plagurized version of HeroR's work, let me know.