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The Sword of Light
by C. Wayne Dowdy, III
[10 years old]



The ancient writing

Once there was peace in Rickton. Then chaos came across the land. In the last hope a hero came and sealed the curse. People called him the great hero. What became of the hero? No one knows. Three-thousand years later, someone released the curse and was overwhelmed by it. Now chaos once again reeks through Rickton. The only hope is the hero.

In a town in Rickton called Littleburg lived a young boy named Tom Giwa. Tom was an amateur horseback rider in Littleburg. But he never found it interesting. He wanted to become a hero like the great hero. But his mentor Engler said to leave it to the real heros to capture the curse. One day when Tom was riding his horse Metrle in the woods he fell off her back and she escaped! Tom knew that if his mentor found out that he lost Metrle that he would go crazy, so he ran after her.

He knew it would be hard to catch Metrle, but he also knew he had to try.

While running through the woods in search for Metrle, he came across a piece of parchment. He picked it up. It had strange writing that somehow Tom was able to read. He did not understand it though. He knew he needed to bring it to his mentor so he stuffed it in his jacket.

After he found Metrle he headed back for Littleburg, still wondering about the parchment in his jacket pocket.


The Journey to Denlerd

Once he got back to Littleburg he went to Engler and asked about the parchment. Engler said he would bring it to the wisest man in Rickton.

"Only he can read this dark writing. His name is Mengore. He lives in the land of Denlerd. It is far from here. I shall start my journey today. You shall stay here."

"But I want to go too," said Tom.

"No, it will not be. It is too dangerous for a young boy."

It was early and Tom was wide awake. He was lying in bed dressed. He was listening for the sound of Engler's leaving for Denlerd. When suddenly he smelled smoke. Ahhhhh! He heard in the distance. He jumped out of bed and looked out of the window. He saw seven people wearing dark robes with hoods covering their faces.

All the houses were on fire! He ran outside and grabbed a quiver, some arrows, and a bow. He rode past as many as twelve houses before he realized every other living thing in town was dead.

He went to the end of what is now only rubble and ash. But then he looked down. He saw the piece of parchment that he gave to Engler! He knew what he must do. He must travel to Denlerd.


The Gitwa Seven

It had been an hour now and not yet has he seen a town. He looked up at the sky. It was a clear, hot summer day. He looked ahead; he saw a camp. He rode up to the camp.

"Hello," said an old man coming out of one of the tents.

“Hello,” said Tom.

“My name is Gilta and this is my camp,” said the old man.

“My name is Tom and I come from the land of Littleburg.”

“Tell me why do you travel so far?” said Gilta.

Tom explained what happened at camp and the journey to Denlerd.

“Hmmm, so you saw seven men, ”said Gilta.

“Do you know who they are?” said Tom.

“That can’t be; it’s impossible,” muttered Gilta. "May I see that piece of parchment?"

“Okay," said Tom. He handed the parchment.

“Hmmm, yes, this is a part of it," said Gilta.

“Part of what?" said Tom.

“This piece of parchment is one of the ten halves of the insealment charm,” said Gilta.

“What is that?” said Tom.

“If you read every one of these you could inseal anyone or anything,” said Gilta. “It is no wonder that the Gitwa Seven are looking for it.”

“The what?” asked Tom.

“The Gitwa Seven is a group of sorcerers who want to capture the curse and try to use it to take over Rickton,” said Gilta. “Now it is getting late, so I suggest that you stay here for the night.”

Tom looked around. “Sure,” he said.

“If you don’t mind, we don’t have many tents so you’ll have to share a tent,” said Gilta.

Tom was looking forward to a good night's sleep.

Tom went to the tent. On the way there he ran into two boys about a year older than him.

"Hi, my name is Anco, and this is my brother, Rawl. So what’s your name, mate?"

"Tom," he said.

Just then a girl about Tom’s age with brown hair walked up.

"Hi, Rawl; hi, Anco. Who’s the new kid?"

"Name’s Tom."

"Hi, my name is May. So why are you here?"

Tom explained what happened.

"Hhhhhhmmm, well that explains it. Okay then, you start tomorrow at six. See you later," and she ran off.

What did she mean start tomorrow? Tom asked himself. I guess I’ll find out.

He ran to his tent, still wondering what she was talking about.


Training For Fire

It was seven o'clock, so Tom went ahead and got dressed. He went to the stable (if you want to call it that because it is just a piece of wood that you can tie your horses to) to feed Metrle. He got some hay and put it at Metrle's reach. On his way out he ran into Rawl.

"Tom, Gilta wanted me to tell you that he needed you in his tent as soon as you can."

"Okay, got it, Rawl," and he walked off.

Tom went to Gilta's tent right after that. When he got there, Gilta was already there, sitting on a log.

"Hello, Tom. Listen, last night when you told me you were traveling to Denlerd? Well, I thought about it and decided that I could escort you there. And by the way, I heard that May will be training with her later today. I suppose you do not know where though considering the fact that you just got here yesterday. So Rawl will show you. Just ask him where May's tent is--"

"But I have a question," Tom interrupted.

"Very well then."

"Well, what exactly do you mean, training?"

"You wouldn't believe it if I told you." And without another word he left the tent.

"So, what's going on then?" asked Anco. (It had been an hour since the meeting with Gilta.)

"Not much. I've just got to go somewhere at six."

"Well, then you better get going. It's five fifty-five."

"Okay. Hey, can you show me where May's tent is?"

"Yeah, it's not too far from here."

He led Tom straight through the group of large tents until they came to a very small tent with May standing in front holding a wooden staff with ropes tied to each end for grips.

"Hey, Anco. So, Tom, are you ready?"

"Yeah, but what exactly do you mean?"

"Well, if you are going to stay alive the entire journey, you are going to have to know how to defend yourself."

"Yeah."

"Then let's get started," May said as she threw him a staff. "Now, first thing you have to do is stand in the correct position."

Tom put his feet where she told him to.

"Now . . . what is that smell?"

Tom could smell it too and remembered it as the smell of smoke he had smelled in Littleburg!

"May, we have to find Gilta."

"Why?" asked May.

"Just look up!" yelled Tom.

As May looked up she whispered something. "Hurry, Tom, it's them. They're looking for the parchment."

As they ran to Gilta's tent they ran into Anco and Rawl, both holding a sword, and next to them stood Gilta, locked in combat with one of the Gitwa Seven.

"You four flee. We will hold them off as long as we can," said Gilta, pointing at Tom, May, Anco and Rawl.

"But what about you?" asked May, while making a hard strike at one of the Gitwa Seven's soldiers as he approached.

"Don't worry. Now here is this. I think you might need it," Gilta added, throwing her a small bag with a sword attached to it. "RUN!" yelled Gilta as the rest of the Gitwa Seven approached.

And they ran to the stable. (May whipped out two soldiers in the process.)

"Everyone grab a horse!"

Once everyone had a horse they left the camp.

They all hoped that Gilta survived.


The Southern Natives

It was dark now; at least an hour had passed since they had fled from camp. All was quiet. They hadn’t dared to build a fire in case they might give away their position.

“Okay, well, I guess we’ll have to stop here tonight. But we’ll have to be careful.”

“Hey, May, what’s in that bag?”

“Don’t know, Rawl,” said May as she reached inside the bag.

What she pulled out appeared to be nine pieces of parchment similar to the one in Tom’s jacket pocket.

“What are those?” asked Anco.

“I’m not sure, but there’s a note too.”

It said:

        Dear May,
        If you are reading this, then what should be in this bag
        is very important. You must go to the land of Honet and
        find Golsel. He is an old friend of mine and should be able
        to help you. Be careful and don’t let anyone have what is in this bag.

“The rest of the sheet is blank,” said May.

Now it was almost nightfall. The flames of the tents had not yet stopped and the noise had ceased. They did not dare to light a fire for fear that they might give away their position. Then out of nowhere they heard footsteps and rustling from the bushes.

Then two men wearing old cloth appeared from the bushes. Each was wearing colored paints on his body. Both had bows in their hands raised toward them.

“It is the natives from the southern lands,” whispered Rawl. Within seconds Anco and Rawl had pulled out two fine wooden bows and May a sword. Tom hesitated and then unbuckled his sword from Metrle and stood ready to fight.


The Land of Stone

Before Tom could try to attack, the natives had already disappeared. Where did they go? he wondered. And then, as if nothing had happened, they got back on their horses, although May still hadn’t sheathed her sword.

“Honet is just over this hill!” Anco exclaimed.

But before they could ride any farther, two men, each wearing old rusted armor, appeared and ran at them. Tom began to reach for his sword, but then the men halted as if time had stopped.

Tom looked to the side and saw that Rawl was holding out the letter that Engler had given them. He looked to Anco and saw him holding up a circular stone with engravings in it. As he looked, he saw that the warriors were gone.

“What was that all about?” Tom asked.

“I don’t know,” said Anco, “but security is tight.”

As they climbed the hill, a tall marble castle came into view. A bit farther down, the trail that had been only pebbles and dirt was now fine marble.

In an instant many things happened. The doors of the castle swung open. Natives came running up the hill, and warriors streamed through the gates of the marble castle.

Before Tom even began to withdraw his sword, the crowd of natives streaming down the hill trampled him. He looked around and saw Anco and Rawl shooting every native in sight. Tom quickly ripped out his sword and began slashing his way to Rawl, but then he felt a sharp pain in his thigh. The noise began to cease, and everything went dark.

“You okay?” asked Anco.

Tom opened his eyes to see a large marble room with lines of beds.

“You took a big fall when that native shot you.”

“Yeah, I’m fine,” said Tom.

“Welcome to the Land of Honet,” said one of the nurses. “You will be safe now.”


The Prophecies Warning

The nurse explained that Tom had sprained a minor bone in his body.

The next day Tom got a look around the castle. It was a bright marble building. But what was really amazing is that each floor had a large garden filled with tons of tropical fruits hanging from their vines. These gardens were always crowded with people carrying large water jugs or doctors writing on parchment taking notes.

"Come," said a booming voice. Tom jumped. He looked to see a man in bright green cloth signaling for Tom. Tom hesitated.

"Come, boy!"

The man was middle-aged with dark gray eyes.

Tom thought, What harm could it do? He followed cautiously. As they went up the staircase less and less people crowded the staircase.

Finally they reached an old wooden door. The man opened the door. The only thing in the room was an old piece of parchment. Then without warning the parchment gave a loud screech and spoke:

      "The one survivor of a doomed village
      will seek the signal of life and light.
      Shall the mark of Morge be shattered
      and the scars of the sword prevail."

Tom turned to see that the man’s eyes had gone blank white, and he said, "You shall die!"

And then he was gone.


Golsel

Tom was shocked for a moment but then May ran in.

"What?" But before she could say another word five men holding spears rushed in and grabbed both of them and tied them with bonds.

"We will question them at the arena!"

The guards led them down a large spiral staircase to a garden. Except this was different. This was empty and was surrounded by a large marble circle of seats. In the middle stood a large marble platform. At the opposite side of the stadium was another entrance. The guards forced them onto the platform.

“You sordid cowards,” muttered May.

The guards made them stand there for what seemed like hours. Then finally a small group of people wearing dark blue robes entered and sat down in the stadium. Tom glanced at May and saw that she was tearing at her bonds with a small silver knife. Suddenly all was quiet.

It was quickly interrupted by Anco and Rawl being pushed in by two more guards. Behind them was a man. He looked like he was middle-aged. The man wore a bright, colorful robe. When Anco saw them he gave them a slight glance. He had no worry. Tom looked back to May. She had torn her bonds and was pretending to have her hands tied.

"Welcome, Golsel!"

Tom froze. He had found his target.

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Please click HERE to read the next chapters.

More will be added to this story as it is written.
Note: The editor only corrects punctuation and spelling where necessary.


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Wayne's editor may be reached at this address: bethjacks@hotmail.com