Swords in Sunder

Prologue

In the beginning, the world we know did not have life that was meant to rule and control. There was once peace, and the Lord, the creator of this world gave it that peace. In order to maintain the peace, the Lord entrusted the six mighty forces into guardians known as the Sigurd: Gaia, the god of Earth; Hestia, the god of Fire; Zephyr, the god of Wind; Nereus, the god of Water; Hyperion, the god of Light, and Dragan, the god of Darkness. The Lord entrusted these spirits with guidance to man to govern and rule the land.

The Lord wanted man to prosper and be plenty, to make a legacy. However, Dragan wanted more power and began to taint the hearts of man to corrupt the lands. Hyperion was the only god to oppose Dragan's mighty power. As the war waged, man had to decide for themselves which side to fight for. Brothers turned on each other against their will and the lands were swept with grief, sorrow, and sin. As the two gods fought, they soon caught the other gods of the world in their war, and the Sigurd was split in two. Hyperion led Gaia and Nereus, while Dragan led Hestia and Zephyr.

The Lord knew that his wonderful world had became so corrupt that he did not have the heart to let them damn themselves, so he made the seventh and final power come to life, the god of Life and Death, the Phoenix. The Phoenix swept across the land and purged every blackened heart from sin, spreading its flames to the skies and killing off the entire world.

The Lord sealed the powers of the Sigurd into six blades hoping to let man start anew and have life once more, for he truly loved man and needed their hearts to have a purpose, for love to overcome all negativity. The Lord gave the six blades to the new people of the world and made them seal away their powers and vow to never let the tragedy happen again.

Man was given life again, and the Lord swore to never intervene in their lives anymore. He let man choose their own fates, giving them freedom to worship or to prosper, though after several thousand years, the Lord yearned for prayers and love and was soon lost in memory. Once again, the Lord needed to remind man whom they serve and the power of the Phoenix had not yet been sealed.

Part I

Rain poured around the broken man. Not broken from his body, for his health was well and his physical strength incomparable to any other, however, his spirit was broken. Into a thousand pieces and more, Godri, the Knight of one of the greatest kingdoms in the country, Lei, home of the Horse gods, sat under the only patch of trees in a hundred miles to escape the cold grasp of the rain.

His mind raced, for the events of the past few days weighed heavily on him, and confusion tore at his heart, dampening even his will to keep running, and his will to even breathe

Am I truly this monster? Do I deserve to keep living? He thought to himself, why me… Please… just tell me.

Godri soon drifted into the dreams of the night, and the pain of the past yet again stabbed his soul.

Blood was on the knight's hands. Blood not of his own, but of the boy swallowed in the crimson pool before him.

"There! Get him!" yelled the guards as they stormed through the door. Horns of the castle blew as more guards in the courtyards hollered about, "Intruders! Find them!"

Godri could only stand there helpless, motionless.

Godri woke at the sound of thunder cracking in the distance. He hated sleep these last few days, for each night he slept, dreams would haunt his every hour.

I must keep moving; Keldrim is only another two days off… Maybe the true god of this world will show me guidance… Maybe even forgiveness. I must keep going! The thoughts of Godri echoed inside his mind over and over as they raced around like the hundred fireflies under the set of trees he sat.

After countless hours to himself, Godri finally saw the sun shine out over the hills, the gift of his tomorrow had finally come, and another night of haunting nightmares was over.

The King of Lei, King Godaran stood over the wrapped corpse of his son, Prince of Lei, Gorick. Only a tenday ago, Gorick was running through the fields of Lei, being what any young boy wanted, a hero. Pretending that sticks were swords and that his trusted hounds were dragons and he would slay them day after day.

"My lord?" asked one of the guards behind Godaran, "You must bid your son farewell, to place the torch into the hay. You must…"

"I know what I must do, fool." Spat the King, his voice drenched in agony and his eyes dripping with tears of betrayal. Surely he deserved the fate of his son, surely his son should be the one mourning.

Godaran placed the torch into the hay as his hand still grazed upon his son's cheek, feeling the sting of the rising flames, yet he did not move his hand. The guard behind him had to force Godaran away from the flames to keep his King from burning, though he knew that forcing the King away from his son may have even sentenced his own death, but the King could only stand and watch as the smoke and flames engulfed his beloved son, Gorick, Prince of Lei.

Godri stood to welcome the sun's warmth finally beginning to sting on his skin. The young man, now reaching his twenty-second year, stood a strong and tall man. He had broad shoulders but a fine muscular outline. He had short brown hair, though it used to be long; cutting it would only suit his escape from Lei, and his dark hazel eyes were very deep, and his nose rounded.

To most, he appeared an average sized young man, but his strength was not of this world. Though Godri's outline is not very bulky or large, his arms could lift a smith's stone with ease, and pick up a horse from its side, giving him the title, what many called, the Bear.

As the young man rode further east, he could feel the changes in weather. The vast sea of Nerr brought its warm winds onto the shores of Keldrim, country of the Eastern Skies, and home to the vilest of company.

Traders traveled to Keldrim to seek a quick profit, but they also risked having everything they own stolen and mugged by the savage bandits of the lands. After the Rebellion of Dyfes, the King of the land murdered, and the import of stolen goods going unaccounted for, the people of Keldrim often pay little attention to law and justice.

"Only two more days, Hannehwei," said Godri to his beloved horse, the only part of home he could bring along with his escape from Lei.

Hannehwei's stride was of no other horse, a sorrel mare with a long white mane and tail. She stood at a tall eighteen hands high. Though Hannehwei was not suitable for most riders of Lei, she was given to Godri as an early birthday gift from his uncle, a stable owner in Lei.

Godri took her in as his own and raised her and rode to the Far Hills and back again and again. Hannehwei was a very unusual horse, and no one seemed to want to take her in, except Godri, for he was a bastard child and knew there was strength in Hannehwei's giant stride.

Godri gave a soft graze down Hannehwei's long mane and then gave his routine cues of a soft kick on her ribs and an excited "Hiya!" and the two were off to further pace themselves away from the lands of Lei and deeper into the dangerous lands of Keldrim.

Six days Godri had rode east. Six days and each night, dreams of the past would come and haunt his sleeps. This night, he would ride until he found a softer bed than the rough ground. He would find a nice meadow to pillow himself and let Hannehwei's legs rest; it would certainly be better than drudging onwards with little food and little sleep.

After several hours of riding, the hills of Keldrim finally began to come into view, and rows of crops began to spring up.

Hopefully, there will be a farmhouse, and with a farmhouse, I shall find a soft bed, thought Godri to himself. He also wondered if the farmers from Keldrim were as nice as the peasants of Lei made them out to be, or if they were just stories given by old beggars that sought to soothe their starving souls.

Godri pulled on Hannehwei's reins and gave a soft whoa. A little red headed girl stood several lengths away and stared back at the young man. She could not look away, for it seemed that she had never seen a foreigner before.

Godri was puzzled; he did not know what to say or think of how to introduce himself once he found someone who may give him a bed. "Hello!"

The girl, looking to be at the age of ten, gave a soft smile to Godri and waved back but did not speak.

Perhaps they speak another tongue... joy..

Godri steadied his saddle and raised his leg to get off his horse. As he moved, the little girl startled and began to step away.

"I will not harm you! Do not be frightened. I am a friend!" yelled Godri as soft and welcoming as he possibly could.

The girl again steadied herself and smiled at the young man again, "Friend?" she yelled.

"Yes! Friend!" Godri gave her a soft smile, the kind he had not shown many people in a long while. He knew that this girl did not know the common tongue and he knew he had to be very friendly, "Come! Pet my horse!" yelled Godri as he waved for the girl to come closer with his soft smile still spread along his face.

"Horse?" mouthed the girl as she giggled and ran to meet the stranger and his beautiful horse. She stood only a couple steps away as she timidly inched forward to the huge horse; she did not notice how big the animal was until she got next to it.

"Don't be afraid," said Godri with a smooth tone as he reached for the little girl's hand.

"H-Horse?" said the girl as she slowly reached back to Godri's hand and gave him a smile once she knew she was in no danger, for Godri had a soft spot for children and would never harm a child.

"See? Touch her?" whispered Godri to the little girl as he pulled her hand close to his beloved horse's nose. "Han-neh-wei." said Godri as slow as he could, trying to tell the girl his horse's name.

"Han-nuh-waaay?" said the girl with a grin that spread across her face showing her huge smile and a soft giggle.

Godri smiled back and nodded as he held her hand against Hannehwei's soft fur. He knelt down to one knee to meet the little girl's eyes. He patted the girl's hand on the mare's nose as he said long and clear, "Hannehwei." He then pulled her hand and patted himself on his chest saying, "God-ri."

The girl smiled and yelled louder than Godri expected, "See-Seh!" the pronunciation of her name was long and had a sharp ring with her curving accent.

"See-say?" Godri questioned.

The girl shook her head, "No no! Seeseh!" the cheerful ring in the little girl's voice told Godri that she did not fear him and accepted him.

Godri's cheerful moment was abruptly interrupted at the screaming of a man further in the fields hollering, "SEE-SEH!"

Godri stood suddenly and Seeseh let out a loud gasp.

"No, no! Fafth'e le untu'ape'leh!" the little girl ran out towards the field and disappeared behind the tall corn crops.

"Well, looks like we've made a friend, Hanna," said Godri as he gave his horse a pat on her nose.

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