Nowhere Islands was home to four countries.
The first one was the country of America, run by the elusive King George and Queen Maria. The two of them adopted a being named Giegue, however, their child destroyed most of their country, leaving it as a barren farmland area. Queen Maria and King George escaped the turmoil that their adoptive child had caused, and led a simple life in the country farmland, up until Maria's strange disappearance. The country was refounded and reborn from the ashes, being reborn as "Phoenix", where today, the country had a beautiful princess known as Ana. Phoenix rose from the ashes and became a prosperous kingdom, with farms scattered across the country. It's symbol was a musical note.
The second one was the country of Eagleland, and while nothing of such grandeur as what had happened in Phoenix had occurred here, Eagleland was known as the country of technology, as they had birthed many different creations of alchemy and electricity. The kingdom was run by the Royal Polestar family, and their crown jewel was the beloved princess Paula. The country was well known to the others as the country of technology, with things such as "television" and "phonelines", as well as "radio" and "cars". It's symbol was an eagle.
The third one was known to the world only as Dalaam, a secretive place that no one really knew of or about. Asking anybody on the streets would tell you that most of the inhabitants of the world didn't even know that it existed. Those who did know knew one thing... that the Prince, Poo, had the strangest name possible... and he had disappeared three years ago. Although it was very secretive, the country prided itself in its martial arts training, being the strongest, yet most unknown, countries on the island. It's symbol was a sword.
The fourth one, and the last, but not least, was the kingdom of Osohe. Run by a strange group of indeterminant gender, the Magypsies, the kingdom was the kindest, most neutral and loyal place the Islands had. Everyone was generally carefree and kind. The princess, Kumatora, was the main ruler of their kingdom and no one questioned that fact, ever, even though she commonly escaped the castle to pay with two commoners in the village of Tazmilly, just south of her castle. However, as our story starts, she has disappeared, much like the Prince of Dalaam. It's symbol was a sunflower.
The prince of Dalaam and the princess of Osohe, you see, were accused of having "magical powers beyond our imagination". More than anything, the people of the islands were terrified of the idea of Magic, or, as you and I would call it, "Psychokinesis", or, "PK" or "PSI". However, the people had not yet learned of these capabilities and were terrified.
Giegue, now calling himself Giygas, created an island far off from the Nowhere Islands, and claimed it as his own, naming "Tanetane Island". He infested it with terrible capabilities of defense and horror, and started to kidnap children all over the four countries with these magical abilities, claiming that he was doing the world a favour by taking these children away from their families and locking them away. No one was ever sure what he did to the children once he had them, but one thing was for certain - just the idea, just the thought, that your child was possibly one of these 'Magic Users' that kept popping up, and even one person outside of your family had learnt of this fact, your poor child had a chance of being taken far away from you.
... Never to see them again.
Have no fear, dear reader, as this story does have a happy ending. Allow me to tell you the tale of Giygas' downfall, of the acceptance of Magic in the world, of proper kings and queens claiming their thrones, of thieves and inventors being accepted, of songs, friendships, and of love. For our tale begins...
... Our tale begins with an omelet.
Lucas of the village of Tazmilly lived on the edge of the island in the kingdom of Osohe. He was a strange boy that most villagers found odd and detached, but he seemed to always understand what people wanted or how they felt. He was loved by his mother a great deal, and his father felt he needed a bit of a spine, but loved him all the same. Their pet dog, Boney, loved him too, and so did his beloved twin, Claus. Lucas was also friends with the princess Kumatora, who frequently visited their home just to escape from the Magypsies and the struggles of being ruler of a country.
As his beloved mother, Hinawa, placed a plate with an omelet in front of him, Lucas gave a wide smile and began to eat it right away. The rest of the family ate their morning meal together before finally, the man of the household, Flint, stood up from his seat and fixed his hat on his head.
"... I'm going to be heading off now to work with the sheep," he announced. "If any of you need me, I'll be out back."
"Of course, Flint," replied Hinawa, smiling up at him. "I'll take care of the boys. We were going to head into town today."
"Are we going to see Lighter and Fuel?" asked Claus excitedly.
Hinawa shook her head. "Oh, no, not today, I'm afraid. We're heading off to speak with Mr. Wess today."
Lucas noticed his father frown quite a bit before he turned and headed to the door. Just as Flint placed his hand on the doorknob, he turned his head toward his family one last time.
"... Hinawa. Be careful around Wess, you hear? You know how I feel about that man," were Flint's words before he opened the door and left for the day. He wouldn't be back until it was time for supper.
Hinawa gave a sharp sigh before she stood up from the table as well, picking up the now empty plates and placing them on the counter. "Hurry up, boys, I want to get this meeting with Mr. Wess over with, before your father gets angry."
"If dad doesn't like him," Claus began, as he and Lucas stood up, "why are we visiting him?"
"Oh, boys... you know I'm the town healer. I need to make a new salve for Wess' son," Hinawa explained with a small smile.
Once the three were ready to leave, they headed out the door, waved goodbye to a hardworking Flint, and headed down the road into the main village. Hinawa led her sons to a house just outside of it, past the river bridge, and knocked on the door.
A gruff reply on the other side came as it opened, revealing an elderly man who seemed to be in a bad mood. He gave a big frown but stepped out of the way. "Good to see you, Hinawa," said the old man, leading them through the small home. "The moron should be here in a minute."
This man, this very rude man, was Wess, and in all his thirteen years, Lucas had never met anyone that he had hated as much as he hated this man. Wess had never left a good impression on anyone, and although Lucas suspected that him buying Duster's medicine for his leg was a sign that he regretted what he had caused, it didn't change the fact that Lucas felt he was a horrible father to Duster aside from that one fact. The man always frowned, and he always insulted, and he always got on everyone's bad side quite easily.
... But he paid his mother very well for medicine that his son needed.
"... That's good to hear, Mr. Wess," said Hinawa after a moment of silence. "How has he been feeling?"
"Meh, he complains, but he continues to walk on it, the moron," said Wess in a huff, taking a chair and placing it in the middle of the room. Lucas realized that it must have been meant for Duster. "The town doctor says that he should be using a cane or something, but his brace does just fine and your salve always does the trick when its bothering him. Doesn't stop the fact that the moron keeps walking when he should be relaxing."
"It numbs the pain, but relaxing is recommended..." Hinawa agreed quietly.
At that moment, the door behind the boys opened up, causing the twins to turn to see a young man in ragged clothing stepping... no, limping, into the building. Lucas hadn't seen Duster in a few months, not since the last time his mother had to make this trip to make a new salve for him. With a quick, studious glance, Lucas could tell a few things immediately about him.
Duster hadn't been sleeping well. There were bags under his eyes and he just generally looked tired. Duster also hadn't been eating well, but he really hadn't ever since he had moved out of his father's place and into a small home in town that was cheap for him to keep. The weight loss that he had suffered since Lucas had last seen him, however, was horribly noticeable. Duster also didn't want to be here, and Lucas could tell just be seeing the frown on his face.
... Sometimes being the son of a medicine maker had its benefits.
"Ah, Duster! Take a seat please, and I'll get started on your new salve," said Hinawa quickly, and then she turned to her boys. "Did you two want to help me?"
The new salve made and sealed in a jar, Wess handed Hinawa a hefty amount of coins. He then, rather conversationally, asked her how Flint was doing.
As the two adults caught up on each other's gossip, Lucas smiled up at the tired Duster in the chair and decided to start a conversation of his own, as the silence between him, his brother, and Duster was enough to be able to hear a feather skim past your ear.
"So, Duster," Lucas started slowly, looking down at his hands when the young man gave him his attention. "You're beginning to look a bit ragged..."
"A bit?" Claus snorted. "I'd say he got worse."
Duster gave a low, dark chuckle. "Well, actually, I just got back from Osohe Castle. I snuck in uninvited and got caught trying to get out."
"What for?" asked Claus instantly. "The penalty for that is outrageous, and I know your a good thief, but...?"
"... It wasn't about that," Duster replied quickly, shaking his head. It was a well known habit of Duster's to thieve and pickpocket people in order to get himself food and pay his taxes. "No, actually, I wanted to speak to Kuma."
Lucas recalled Princess Kumatora speaking quite fondly of the crippled thief, and, to be honest, Lucas had begun to feel a little threatened. Being friends with the princess was kind of his thing, and knowing that someone was starting to take his thunder made him a little upset. Princess Kumatora had quickly replied that she had actually known Duster for a very long time - his father used to work for the Magypsies, but she had never specified how. Just hearing the very informal way that Duster spoke of the Princess only solidified the Princess' claims. He wasn't afraid to drop the "Princess", and referred to her rather casually.
"What did you want to talk about with the Princess?" Lucas asked.
"I just wanted to see her. I heard rumors from this weird visitor named Fassad that Giygas from Tanetane was going around capturing people who can use Magic," Duster explained, his tone dropping. It was like he didn't want Wess to hear. "I never told Wess this, but Kuma and the Magypsies... they can use Magic."
"They're Magic users?" Claus asked, amazed.
Duster nodded. "So, you see, I wanted to get in and see if she was okay, but the minute I reached her quarters I find her door wide open. Kuma never leaves her door open."
Lucas' heart sank. "What... What do you mean?"
It was here that a very dark look appeared on Duster's face, one that spoke anger, horror, and sadness. "... It's means Kuma's gone, Lucas. She got snatched."
Lucas and Claus' faces fell at this news.
"The... The princess is gone?" Claus muttered, looking down.
"I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news," Duster spoke, lowering his own head. "It's the truth. If I knew where they took her, I'd go after her myself."
"Mother says you need to take time this time," Lucas replied. "She said you need to rest it."
"I can't do that, I got a starving stomach to feed," was the thief's reply. "I'm not as fortunate as you to go to bed on a full stomach."
"Then why'd you leave your dad?" Claus asked, but he felt that he already knew the answer.
"You know why," snapped Duster, confirming Claus' fear. "But right now, Kuma's gone, and I'm going to find out where. Something tells me that Fassad stranger is behind it."
Lucas frowned, looking away. Duster's words hit home for him. He had also heard about what had been going on in the other countries - there were rumors that the Prince of Dalaam had been snatched, and various children and adults had been disappearing as well. Was this related to what had happened to Princess Kumatora? Lucas suspected as such. It made him wish that he could use Magic, and use it well enough to protect himself from those scary snatchers. Then he could go after Princess Kumatora and save the day, and Duster wouldn't have to, and get to follow the orders that his mother had given him to an extent. Maybe Princess Kumatora would let him call her Kuma, like she lets Duster.
It'd be nice to play hero.
... But it would be scary, too, like all the stories that his mother told him and Claus before they went to bed. The stories with the knights slaying dragons and the princes saving the princesses locked away in their towers and cells, defeating evil witches and fairies along the way. Maybe it was too dangerous for Lucas, but he felt he'd have a better chance than his older friend. At least he didn't have a leg to worry about.
That night, Lucas looked up at the sky before he went to bed and dreamed of Magic. His dream quickly shifted into something horrible, He could see Princess Kumatora, in her beautiful royal blue dress, reaching out to him as a veil of fire surrounded her. Then he saw Duster, next to him, looking down at him with a scary, passive look, his hands in his pockets as he stood. Lucas felt that Duster expected something of him, and when he looked straight ahead, the fire was gone, but the princess was still there. Princess Kumatora was instead in a cell now, surrounded with scary looking skeletons and she was chained.
"Princess!" Lucas called out, and he moved to approach her, but Duster stopped him. "Let me go! I'm going to save her!"
"... You have to start somewhere else," said another voice, someone he didn't recognize. Lucas looked behind him to see a Magypsy. "Lucas, my sweet, there is more to this world than you understand."
Lucas blurted out a rather intelligent answer. "Howha?"
"Oh, Lucas, Lucas, Lucas," chimed the Magyspy, as s/he approached. "There's so much you don't understand, I don't quite think that you're ready for all of it. Unfortunately, the world doesn't work that way. Before you know it, the world will shift around you and everything you thought you knew about yourself will drastically change, and there's not much that we can do about that. You're such an innocent being, Lucas. You, and your brother. You see love in its simplest, most uncomplicated form, and accept it for what it is. Now, it's time for you to grow up, and you don't quite want to. Things are going to change."
"How so?" Lucas asked.
The dream Duster next to him placed a hand on his shoulder, and when Lucas went to look up at him, all he saw was Duster limping away.
"Lucas, what you are seeing now is fragments of the future," explained the Magypsy. "I'm helping you by explaining all this to you through the means of Mind Magic, for I know that soon, your own form of Magic will awaken."
"Fragments... of the future?" Lucas turned away from the retreating dream Duster back to the Magypsy. "What do you mean?"
"Your heart knows where my sweet Princess Kumatora is, and it wants you to go look for her. Things won't quite work out, so your mind is warning you of things to come."
That was when he saw a terrifying sight, the sight of his brother being dragged away by a dark being. "C-Claus!"
"Your mind is warning you, Lucas. Keep its words in mind."
Lucas jolted awake.
Slowly, and surely, the memories of his startling visions and he almost screamed out from the horror of what might happen. What did his mind mean by the fire, or Princess Kumatora being in a cell? Was she really locked away on that Tanetane Island that Duster had told him about? And what about Duster leaving him behind in the darkness like that? Was Duster leaving? And Claus.. being taking away like that into the blackness by shadows. He had to stop that from happening.
A sudden flame appeared in the room, and Claus said uttered a few words. "... I'm in trouble."
Lucas looked over in fear, seeing that his brother had somehow summoned a flame to appear just above the palm of his hand. He almost cried out, but he covered his mouth in time. "Claus!" he muttered through his hand, "Make it go away!"
"I'm trying...!" Claus harshly whispered, before finally making it disappear. "... I guess I have Magic, Lucas... I'm scared. What Duster said earlier about Princess Kumatora disappearing, being taken away. Will that happen to me?"
"No!" Lucas exclaimed through his hand, before he finally let his mouth free. "I won't let it, Claus."
Claus scoffed somewhat. "That's a role reversal. You're protecting me, now?"
"I had a horrible dream, and a Magypsy from the court appeared before me, saying that my heart and mind were warning me of things to come," Lucas explained, looking down a little from the fear. "The Magypsy, she explained that I had Magic, too. It's just not awake yet."
"If your powers were telling you of things to come, than I think they're awake," Claus happily chimed. "I guess we're going to have to protect each other from those snatchers, then, huh? If you can see into the future and I can summon flame, we're both in trouble."
"I want to go for a night walk," Lucas suddenly said, getting out of bed and slipping into his nightwear shoes. "Duster was walking away from me in my dream. I think he might leave town, or he might leave us somehow."
"Do you think he might be going after Princess Kumatora? He did say that he had a feeling Fassad was behind it," Claus mentioned, slipping into his own shoes.
"I think he might be," Lucas agreed, as Claus inched toward the window and opened it far enough for them to be able to slip out.
The two boys escaped without incident, and wandered away onto the path that led to town. The town was dark and dreary at night, and none of the night lights were on. Everyone was fast asleep. Usually in this time of day, Wess and Duster were the only ones haunting the area, as both were known to be night owls to some extent. Lucas could pick out the door that led to Duster's small home built into one of the stone structures forming Tazmilly. It was closed.
"Where's Duster?" asked Claus, his voice barely above a whisper. "I don't see him. Maybe it's not tonight that he's..."
Claus suddenly stopped when Lucas pointed, and both saw Duster's door open a small crack. A slim, limping form slipped through bearing a bag, closing the door behind him. Lucas gasped out of slight fear as his vision became true, for Duster was leaving that night and he was going after Princess Kumatora.
Without thinking, the young newly christianed Magic User raced toward the nearly crippled thief, practically forcing himself to grip around his legs, stopping him in his tracks. "Duster, where do you think you're going? You can't leave! My mother told you that you had to rest! That you had to relax!"
He looked up, to see Duster giving him the exact same look the one in his dream had. "Lucas, let go of me."
"You can't go!"
Duster frowned, as Claus came up as well. "Lucas, let go of me, how did you...?"
"Duster, it's a very long story," Claus began, placing a hand on Lucas' shoulder. "You see... we just learned tonight that we're actually Magic Users... I can summon fire, and Lucas had a prophetic dream about you and Princess Kumatora, and how you were leaving."
As Claus spoke, Duster managed to get Lucas off of him. "I want the two of you to do me a favour and not announce what you can do. If Wess finds out, it'd be bad for all of us."
"What's so bad about your dad finding out about this?" Claus asked him instantly.
Duster paused. For a moment, Lucas feared he was never going to answer and leave them standing there in the cold. Then, finally, "Claus, I'm not sure if you know, but Wess has a bad opinion about Magic. You don't know why he stopped working for the Magypsies, but part of the reason was because that their Magic ruined any of his chances of doing his job, which was to protect this object that he had been tasked with."
Lucas muttered then, "So, they used wards instead of your father?"
Dustern nodded. "I think Wess might have ratted out Kuma. I don't want the same happening to you two, do you hear me?"
Both slowly nodded, frightened by the idea of Wess telling on Princess Kumatora like that. Duster knelt down then and placed a hand on one of their shoulders each and gave them a soft smile.
"Protect each other, protect yourselves. Keep what you can do a secret for as long as you can. Never tell anyone, not even your own parents, not until you know for sure that Hinawa and Flint are going to accept it," he told them, but then he paused and shook his head with a smirk. "No, no they'll accept it. You don't have parents like mine. Yours are accepting. But, the point is, boys, I don't want you getting caught like Kuma did, even if it might have been Wess' fault. Don't tell anyone."
"Not even Fuel?" asked Claus. Fuel was their friend, they told him everything.
Duster only shook his head. "Magic is a big deal, boys. Not everyone accepts the idea that people can do what you can do. So do me and your parents a favour - just keep it quiet. Don't use it in public. Just hide it. Okay?"
Both boys nodded as Duster stood up, a look of pain quickly flashing. Lucas stole a glance at his left leg, seeing that it was a bit bulkier than normal. He must have been wearing his brace.
"Are you still leaving...?" he asked worriedly, looking up.
Duster put a hand on Lucas' head, ruffling his hair somewhat. "Lucas, I have to go after Kuma. Someone has to. Somehow I'm going to stop all of this, let you guys live free and be able to use what you can without the fear. You two stay safe, and I'll come back. ... I promise."
He turned toward the entrance to Tazmilly, and looked back one more time. "You two better head back to bed. Your mother might get worried." After he said those words, he limped toward the gates, waving back at them as a final goodbye.
Both boys stood there, frozen in fear as they watched their older friend disappear through the gates. Claus gave a sigh.
"What a night this has been," he announced to Lucas. "I can summon fire to my palm, you had a dream about a Magypsy that ended up being true, and we both failed in keeping Duster home. Let's go home. I want my bed."
Both sauntered home sadly, their hopes diminished from their failure to fix the future. Neither noticed the shadow of an old man disappear from behind a building.
One of Duster's fears became true. Wess knew what Claus could do.
... To be continued...
Prophetic Item: A BINDLE STICK
Prophetic Person: FUEL
Character Cards Gained:LUCAS
A shy boy from the village of Tazmilly. He is good friends with the Princess, Kumatora, and a crippled thief named Duster. He has a twin brother named Claus. He's a quiet and knowledeable boy, able to piece together things rather quickly. He will soon discover that his part in everything is much bigger than he would have liked.
Lucas' older twin brother, from the village of Tazmilly. His friends with the Princess Kumatora, but he's not as close to her as Lucas is, and considers Duster a more important friend, thinking he's brave and strong for what he can do. He's brash and doesn't always think first. He discovered that he can summon fire.
Wess' son, but he never refers to himself as that and also never calls Wess 'father' or 'dad'. He's a thief in Tazmilly, stealing to survive and get by in a world that won't accept him because of his limp. He is a very caring individual, thinking of the twins and "Kuma" as very important to him.
The princess of Osohe, living close to the small village of Tazmilly, where two of her best friends live. Not much is known about her at the moment other than the fact that she can use Magic and was recently captured by Giygas, taken to a far away place. Duster started his journey to find and retrieve her.
Duster's impolite father, but he's never called that by his son. He despises Magic after it replaced his job of protecting an object by the Magypsies... but is that reason enough to start a riot by getting the Princess captured by Giygas?
HINAWA & FLINT
The twins' loving parents. Hinawa works as a medicine maker and Flint takes care of the sheep. They support their sons with every choice they make, but what will they think of their sons being able to use Magic?
Prophetic Dream: Sometimes a Magic User can learn of the near or distant future through a dream, that is, if it directly involves them and their feelings. Sometimes these messages can be changed for the better of for worse, but other times, they are unable to be changed no matter what the User tries.
Fire: Most Magic Users can summon a form of fire to be used as either a match or a weapon. It started the Magic User executions a long time ago, resulting in Magic Users hiding themselves. Giygas sees it as a dangerous part of a Magic User's arsenal, but it really depends on the person's intent of using it.