Shadowlight (Excerpt)

“Olamor, look out!” Valenia screamed, ducking underneath the arms of the Arolight as it fell, trying for anything it possibly could, to penetrate Valenia’s armour. Slashing haphazardly at almost anything it saw. It’s sinewy black body bubbling up in places as if it had a hell inside.“Valenia, this is out of control, what is it doing?” “It appears to be confused as to why we’re defending ourselves, it’s dangerous, but this looks like a monstrous outburst.” Leaping onto the back of the Arolight, now in a full blaze, Olamor thrust his sword deep into the black and silver body of the wild beast as it fell in pieces all around them. “It’s finished! Olamor exclaimed, right before pummeling off the back of a very angry Arolight, who apparently was unimpressed with Olamor’s piercing blade. “What do we do? it’s not dying!!!“ Olamor shouted, picking himself up and moving into attack position.” “It’s not supposed to!” Valenia said, we just need it to calm down. Valenia pulled her body through the green potsmold and oberon, until she was standing perfectly in front, a midpoint between crouching Olamor, gasping for breath, and the now, even more angry Arolight. “Please calm down, bizarre beast from beyond!” Valenia screamed. The Arolight pulled his body around and brought a hail of light onto Valenias shield, then suddenly, stopped. Everything paused. It was as though time stood still. “Oh OK, are we done then?” The Arolight spoke, in what sounded like a very astute,, studied, and well spoken retort for so vile a being from the depths of Frosthell. Olamor and Valenia both stood up. “Sure we can stop. Stay away from our village. We’ll let you go for now.” “OK, next time maybe ask me instead of trying to kill me, disdainful fairy warriors?” “Can’t promise anything.” Valenia said.  Lumbering slowly through Potswold forest, Olamor and Valenia watched the now calm Arolight, as it made its way across the canopies and back to wherever it came from. 

“Let’s get back to Novaria,” Valenia said. “It’s been a long day, can you call a swan? Olamor lifted up  his mythshaft and played a soft melody, like an upward sound of varying pitch, otherworldly to human ears. Within moments two swans appeared, gently guiding a leaf, form one of the trees that reached miles into the sky. “You drive,” Valenia said. “Um, we split turns, Valenia” Olamor said. “What? I drove us here this morning, it’s your turn.” Valnia shot back. The swans looked at each other, confused, and then pulled the leaf around. Valenia pulled a long reed from the ground, climbed onto the leaf and helped Olamor onto the back for rest. He really had the worse end of it with the Arolight, Valenia thought, “I’ll drive.” She said. They passed through the river, a wide expanse of calm waters, dragonflies fliting their way through the afternoon glow, golden ringshaft bathed in silverlight. They watched the forest in all it’s magic, even to experienced fairies, it was always mysterious and surprising. “I could never tire of this,” Valenia said. “The forest is a forever mystery.” “That’s helpful,” Olamor said, we’re not going anywhere anyway.” Valenia glared at Olamor. “You have a really bizarre attitude for a fairy warrior.  Were you brought up by Arolights? “ she said. ”You should know,” Val said, “You would have been too.”

Olamor and Val reached the far southern gateways into Novaria right as nightfall was about to start, it had been a long day and they were tired. The swans knew the way by then so Val placed down her mythstaff and let her mind drift in an Opallium field. All the fairies could do this. Within the village gates, and for a short while thereafter, dream started to seep into reality, and an ecstatic series of images, as if a latticework, or cat’s cradle, appeared and flowed within her body. Placing both hands on Olamor’s wounds, within moments they were both healed. They drifted past the village houses and Fairy outposts, waved at the lookouts, and finally came upon the village shores. It was here that the Fairies built their home. About 15 minutes away from the town center and meeting house, Val and Olamor stopped at their families hearthstone. Potswold and ivy covered the walls, leaving a mix of pale blue, white, and green as if nature and garden combined into every part of the walls and nooks. “Armor off,” Val said. They both went to their respective rooms and met again in the garden behind the ivy walls. “Here, I poured us both a draft of water from the cerulean pools. There must have been rain while we were away, they’re full.” “Thanks,” Olamor said, and thank you for healing me on the way home, I knew you would but still, it was a nice gesture.” “I saved your life and it’s a gesture?” Val said. “For an ethereal being you really need to adjust your priorities.” Olamor smiled. “I love you Val..” He said. “Thanks Olamor,” she said, “I don’t need to say it, you know I do.”

“I need to tell you something,” Val said. “What is it?” asked Olamor. “In the Opallium field,” Val paused, thinking. “I saw something. The lattice work was more delicate this time, there were parts of the further reaches that seemed to be darkening in a way, and not the delicate black fields of the centercore. It was imperceptible, but I felt it.” “What does that even mean?” Olamor asked. “I’m not sure, but I’ve never felt it before.” She sat and thought. Silence filled the garden, there was the sound of the forest in the distance. About an hour went by with Olamor and Val just stiting there. It could have been less, and in many ways time didn’t exist within the village walls,.Val looked up after awhile and seemed on the edge of tears. “Olamor, the forest is dying.” 

At once the glade of the outer forests gave way to a series of stone and granite, carved rock, that currently like crystals into the cool air. Val and Olamor peered out into the golden, flowing horizon leading up and into the inner city districts of the village. “Let’s go to the council gates”, Val said. there was a note left by the Viridian League that they had something to attend to. Winding staircases in Valenia stretched out for miles. There was no quick way up the slope to the upper chambers of the Chloroform precipices, glowing in, but they never tired, and time seemed to drift here in the city, like a mountain in the sky, moving past clouds into the upper atmosphere, the trees still within view. 

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