The Chronicles of Valana Volume 2: Elaria's Bane

by AB

Chapter 6

Washed up in a sea of sand

"Wake up, we are requested in the throne room before the King." Uragoth woke Norion up. "Get ready, I have to go send an urgent… "letter" to Gel'anr."

"W…what? Why? What hour is it?"

"The hour is late, young prince of Udala, the hour is late and the ship carrying the High-King has been sunk in a terrible storm." Terastil answered him coming in the room.

"Uragoth, you will use the stone?" Uragoth nodded.

"We know the king is not dead."

"Yes, but we cannot show to know it…yet. Panic, they must think we are panicking."

Uragoth left the room.

"Wait…what do you mean Aer'andil's ship has sunk? How do we know?" Worry obvious in his eyes.

"Fishermen found pieces of a wrecked ship a few hours ago, the message just arrived." Terastil replied sheathing his sword.

"It could be another ship?" Norion hoped.

"No, the figurehead was found, it was the High-King's ship." Terastil left the room.

Ten minutes later they were before the King of Oghelle. The smug smile on Lovikor's mouth infuriated Norion who tried his best not to show it.

"Your Highness, what news have you in this hour?" Terastil asked taking a small bow.

"We have had news, the ship carrying your King to the Orkhavocs has been sunk by a ferocious storm, there do not seem to be any survivors. I am sorry to tell you that your King is dead." The King replied looking none too sad about it.

"My King I can assure you the High-King of all Elves is still very much alive."

"How can you possibly know this? Are you in some sort of magical contact with him? Some Elven spell we are unaware of?" King Horigor mocked him.

"No, King Horigor Averegn, although the Elves do indeed possess much knowledge in the ways of magic and speaker wisdom we do not make apparent. I know because if the last of the Line of Glothoin was dead the pact would be undone and this world would descend into chaos and Darkness. If Aer'andil High-King of Gel'anr was dead everyone would know it."

The King did not like how he had not managed to anger the Elf. "If you say so Elf."

"I do Your Highness. Will you send search and rescue ships?"

"No, the protection of our shipping lanes is more important at the moment." King Horigor had a cruel face on, Terastil knew better than to assume his denial had anything to do with the shipping lanes.

"Is it the shipping lanes, Your Highness, or perhaps the fact that your army is amassing to your Kingdom's southern borders?"

King Horigor seemed surprised at Terastil's knowledge of this. "This is part of protecting our lanes. If the pirates of Halmeran and Limenodor will not cease their attacks on our shipping lanes it is far less costly for us to…assimilate them into our Kingdom."

"I suppose you're correct Your Highness…or you would be if your father in law, Caaran Jutli was not using his ships disguised as Halmeran and Limenodorian ships to attack his and other Oghellen merchant ships and make it look like "pirates" of those two Kingdoms." Terastil knew he was treading on dangerous waters but his orders were clear and he would not disobey orders from the High-King.

"How dare you! Where is your proof? Who is feeding these lies to you? Show them that I may…correct their treacherous ways." King Horigor bellowed, his voice easily carried across the vast throne room.

"I think you call them "The Vaghish"? The poor. They have eyes, ears and presence everywhere do they not? Some of them are in the ranks of the Hunters of Darkness even, an elite order of warriors answerable only and directly to the High-King of Gel'anr."

"Your High-King is playing with the politics of MY Kingdom?"

"No, Your Highness, that mess is your own creation. Those of the Hunters that are also "Vaghish" only report to the High-King on matters relating to the Darkness, what they do with their free time is their own business. Perhaps if the rich in Oghelle did not find slave owning, child-raping and black arts so…enjoyable the "Vaghish" would not feel the need to rebel or spy or even perhaps kill those who would oppress them, rape their kids and so on."

"You would presume to dictate how this Kingdom is run? They are poor, the strong conquer what they must and the weak suffer as they must."

"Weak?" Terastil chuckled. "As you wish Your Highness, it is not my kingdom after all. Now if you will excuse me, if you will not send ships to search for my High-King I have to go arrange for some." Terastil made to leave the room.

"Guards!" Three guards stepped in his way upon their King's yell.

"I only assume I am your guest, King of Oghelle. Have I and my companions become your prisoners? I can assure you if you still wish to make friends and allies of the Human Kingdoms of the Alliance this would not be the way to do so."

Norion felt tense. Terastil's hand was holding on to his swords' hilt. He seemed relaxed but Norion could tell he was ready to spring into action. The combined force of the Palace guards could not hope to defeat the three of them, even if Uragoth was not present at the moment. Terastil and Uragoth alone could best the human soldiers with their eyes blindfolded and their hands tied behind their backs. What worried Norion was the part of the message Aer'andil had told them about. "Darkness sits in Oghelle's throne." Darkness could best two Elven warriors and an Elven child even if a well-trained child.

"No, you are not my prisoners but for your own safety I must insist I give you two of my best and most loyal bodyguards."

"I assure you, Your Highness, that is not required, my tutors are…" Norion began to say. Terastil cut him off.

"We would be honoured Your Highness." He bowed and turned to leave. The guards did not obstruct him this time. King Horigor snapped his fingers and six heavily armoured guards followed them.

"Will they not be in our way?" Norion asked Terastil in the Elven tongue.

"No, they are humans. Human ears and eyes are easily deceived. Let the Human King believe what he may so that we can move about as we want."

Meanwhile Uragoth was speaking to Aer'andil's mother by means of a scry-stone.

"Yes, My Queen I know he is still alive, so we are to follow his plan?"

"Yes, Uragoth. I will calm the Human Kingdoms here in Valana. Execute his orders as you have them. My son may be young but he sees things that we do not, we must have faith and trust that he knows what he's doing even if we do not understand his intentions."

"Yes, My Queen. We will then do as he has ordered us to. I shall leave you to return to sleep."

"Sleep? No, no more sleep for tonight. I leave you." Queen Felwyn Galay touched her scry-stone "terminating" the magical connection between her and Uragoth. A scry-stone was one of the very few things that could penetrate the wards and protections around the Elven Isles which was why there were only so many of them linked to the one within Gel'anr and why they were all closely monitored and why the one in Gel'anr was under the High-King's close supervision. Now entrusted to his mother during his absence.

Uragoth hid the scry-stone in his armour and terminated the spell stopping anyone from eavesdropping in his conversation with the Queen.

Imer was already awake when someone knocked on his door of his Palace chambers.

"Who is it?" He asked, his hand on his sword.


Imer opened the door. With the door cracking he did not hear Terastil whispering a spell. "What can I do for one of the guardians of the High-King?"

"I am to give you this envelope. If you agree with what is written inside leave a rose of the desert by the fountain in the main courtyard. Do that and a…friend of ours will be in contact with you. Don't and you will not hear from us again."

"Do you not fear for anyone listening in?" Imer asked him looking left and right.

"No, no one can hear anything in a hundred meters in every direction except for you and me. Read the missive." Terastil turned and left.

Terastil walked calmly to the room he and Uragoth shared while in the Oghellen Royal Palace placed various wards and spells around the room and activated the scry-stone Uragoth had used before.

"Terastil. What news of the High-King? All according to plan?" Feldon asked through the scry-stone.

"Yes, I think so Your Highness." Terastil made a small bow of respect.

"Good, what do you have for me?"

"Imer's offspring. They can be escorted to Udala?"

"Yes, we will send one of our new prototype warships." Feldon's lips formed a small smile of contentment.

"Have it come from the west, from the coast of Nikorn and wait for us on the Oghelle's side of Blagar pass in one month."

"So it will be done. Anything else?" Feldon seemed to retrieve a piece of parchment from one of his inner pockets.

"Yes, my Lord, but I do not understand it." Terastil retrieved a piece of parchment.

"No, neither do I or anyone else other than High-King Aer'andil but there is this thing where if you can learn what you do not know about something and exclude it completely then what is left is all you need to know and everything you want to learn."

"So by me telling you this word which I do not understand you will understand that which you do not about water's true nature?"

"Yes, then the only difficulty is realising I know all about water and everything about how it works and what it can and cannot do and write that down in a piece of parchment or endanger myself to complete and utter insanity…at least for the first time I learn something so ancient and so incredibly powerful. I think my mind will adapt after that."

"I do not understand but I think I will when we return to Gel'anr."

"Yes, our High-King has…plans indeed. I bid you goodnight Terastil of Dol Anro, may the full moon watch over you where shadows lie and Darkness hunts."

"Fare-night, King of Udala, may you have a moonless night in your hunting against the Darkness." Feldon made a bow. Terastil touched the scry-stone, Feldon's image faded and vanished.

Tha'ala woke to a great deal of commotion, servants running up and down, officers carrying orders. She found the Queen walking fast to the Embassies' sector. After the creation of the Alliance forty years ago, Aer'andil had commanded a new section be built just outside of the city to house the Ambassadors of the various Human nations of Valana.

"My Queen, what is all the commotion?" Felwyn stopped in her tracks. She motioned Tha'ala to come with her as she continued walking.

"Aer'andil was going to visit the Orkhavocs, his ship has sunk, he's still alive but I am mobilising the army with Feldon as commanding officer until Aer'andil is found, and assembling the Kingdoms of Valana."

"What? How? When? Who?" Tha'ala's mind exploded with questions and worry for her love.

"I do not know who or how, but I am almost certain as to the why. I am mobilising the army and assembling the Kingdoms of Valana as per my son's instructions he left before he left for Elaria."

"What is he scheming? How could he possibly know any of this would have happened?" Tha'ala asked stunned.

"The ways of the High-King of Gel'anr of the Lineage of Glothoin are plenty and shrouded in the shadows in which he fights the Darkness. Perhaps he does not know what will happen but prepares for contingencies for as many possible outcomes as he can. He is his father's son and there are things which he will not be able to tell you like his father could not tell me. Now come with me, your education into the fine art of diplomacy continues."

As the day progressed it was obvious to Tha'ala what the Queen was trying to do. She was fighting left and right trying to keep any of the Human Kingdoms from joining any war on the side of Oghelle in what seemed a certainty now, a new war against the Orkhavocs.

Rodenia was furious the Orkhavocs had been included in the Alliance without the High-King asking anyone beforehand, Eri'Adar was asking for trade privileges, Lavonia was demanding exclusive trade privileges to the Orkhavoc lands, Dara refused to cooperate in any way, Batorn requested lands to the Northern borders of Dara, Odrel and Udelon were the only ones who requested nothing but the Queen knew better than to trust semi-nomadic horse tribes and those who defended against them and Qadon was rejecting the Queen's proposal for the termination of sanctions against Fadr.

By the end of the day Tha'ala could feel her head boiling in headache and as tired as if she had run for kilometers and more.

"This did not go well…" She whispered. They were heading back to the Royal Palace.

"Quite the contrary," The Queen corrected her. "We know where they stand, as always the humans are quick to reveal their desires while our game is far more gradual and unseen. I could not care less if Redonia is angry at us or if Qadon does not want to lift the sanctions against Fadr because suppling them via black market has become more profitable to them than if Fadr could purchase from everyone or if Eri'Adar think it can get what they're asking. In the end, they are in the Alliance and they will not join Oghelle against the Orkhavocs. I do not care if they wish to join Oghelle against other Elarian human kingdoms but the Orkhavocs are now under Gel'anr's protection, the end."

"My Queen if they are under our protection…if Oghelle attacks them…" Tha'ala's voice trailed.

"Why do you think I am mobilising the army child? Because I wanted to see how fast Elven warriors can wear their armour and sheathe their weapons? We are spiraling to war against Oghelle." The Queen's voice revealed an unrelenting spirit and an indomitable will. She would bring her son's orders to conclusion.

Aer'andil woke slowly, a poking irritation at his ribs. He opened his eyes coughing out sea water. His eyes focused to see a young Orkhavoc standing on top of him, trying to wake him up.

His first instinct was to defend himself but his conscious mind reasoned that if the Orkhavoc wanted him dead he'd be dead already. Still, by instinct he searched for his bow finding it nearby.

"You okay? You elf?" The Orkhavoc asked him in broken Elvish.

Aer'andil lifted himself up to his hands before sitting on his knees. "Yes, I'm an elf, what is your name?" He asked the Orkhavoc in the Orkhavoc tongue.

"I be Gughekren, I become great warrior and lead my people. My father Glogak is great King and reformer." Gughekren grinned proud of his heritage and his father. Aer'andil studied him a while. He was tall nearly at one hundred and ninety centimeters, well-muscled with a round face, big tusks coming out of his lower jaw and two horns on the back of his head.

"I have met your father. He is indeed a great warrior with a pure heart. You should be proud to be his son." Glogak had fought against them in the war against Zah Dah. In the siege of Eri'Adar he and one other Orkhavoc were the only ones of the enemy army to not have died by the army of fire Aer'andil had conjured up while he was an avatar of fire's true name. Aer'andil had spared their lives after, inviting them to spend time in Gel'anr and learn from the Elves. Glogak had returned to Elaria after three years and had visited Gel'anr three more times since then.

This would be the first time Aer'andil would visit Glogak in his city of Nogavad.

Gughekren's face lit up even more by Aer'andil's praise for him and his father. He held Aer'andil's hand and helped him up. Gughekren wore a light leather-made armour and two pauldrons made from dark steel. In his waist hung a double axe and various flasks and vials as well as a long knife. He wore no helmet with his black hair falling long behind his head.

Gughekren studied Aer'andil, he made to grab Aer'andil's bow with Aer'andil stopping him with a yell.

"No, do not touch this, it'll kill you, only I can touch it, it is bound to me and I to it." Aer'andil bent and picked up his bow, made by his father and Merol, Lucas' father.

"Where is the ne…" Aer'andil started asking something when a threatening roar stopped him. A huge brown, bloodied bear came charging at them. It dropped Gughekren to the ground ready to slash at him with its claws and fangs.

"Minaroth no! Stop!" Aer'andil screamed at the top of his lungs pulling at the bear from its fore-shoulders.

The bear looked at him, teeth bared and ready.

"Stop, he was not trying to hurt me, he was helping me out. He is Gughekren son of Glogak, our ally. It is okay." The bear sat on its hind legs and slowly transformed to Minaroth, she had a very severe-looking wound from her shoulder to her ribs, with some of the ribs showing through the hacked flesh. She had done some kind of magic to contain her bleeding.

"My god, Minaroth, you're bleeding. The Dark General did this?" Aer'andil circled her good arm around

"Yes, this bitch Elaria's Bane…" Minaroth groaned. "We need to find me a healer or this spell won't last for long." Gughekren's eyes bulged out in shock.

"You, fought the Dark Specter called "Elaria's Bane and survived? You must be a great warrior, no Orkhavoc ever has." Gughekren passed a hand around Minaroth's waist. He spoke in the Orkhavoc tongue.

"Yes, she is." Aer'andil confirmed solemnly.

"Not great enough, next time I'll butcher the bitch, no one ruins my bear fur and gets away with it." There was nothing but cold fury in Minaroth's face.

Aer'andil stifled a giggle. "We need a city with a healer, is Nogavad close?" He asked Gughekren.

"No," Gughekren shook his head. "We are half a day away from Drodnaudor, a large village."

Aer'andil furrowed his eyebrows in deep thought. "Drodnaudor? It is not in the map is it?"

"No, it is too small for map, Sagathlond is also near."

"Sagathlond? We drifted that much eastwards? Lead the way."

"We no walk, we take my boar." Gughekren said in Elvish. They started walking past the sandy beach to the endless sand dunes. Everywhere Aer'andil could see there was sand.

"Do you have any news from your High-King?" Uer asked Norion. They were at Norion's room.

Norion was sitting on his bed meditating with his spirit when he heard the younger boy's voice.

Norion opened his eyes and smiled. "No, not yet but I know he is alive." Uer sat next to Norion pressing a hand on the older boy's thigh to show his affection and care.

Norion smiled back and pressed his lips on Uer's. "Thank you for caring." He told Uer who leaned in reciprocating the kiss, his hand shooting up to Norion's clothed treasures.

Norion thought about stopping Uer for a second before pressing his hand on Uer's clothed dick.

"I want to do some more of this…what did you call it? Jerking off?" Uer whispered making Norion giggle.

"No, I have something else we can play with." Norion pushed him up against the bed removing the boy's pants. "What…ooohhh…" Uer grasped at Norion's hair pulling him. Norion had wrapped his lips around his dick. His hand pushing Uer's knees up close to Uer's face. Uer was in blissful heaven, wet, sloppy blissful heaven as Norion started sucking him slowly.

"Oh…oh… ugh…oh…" Soft moans came from Uer's mouth feeling Norion's lips press and pressure around his shaft, the silky, spongy tongue bathed and danced on his dickhead. Norion's hands kneaded Uer's soft melons spreading them and pulling them. Norion removed his mouth from Uer's dick kissing him below his balls before slurping on Uer's tight hole. Uer let out a mewl arching his back. "OoOhhhhh shiiiiit…" Uer groaned when after the initial hesitation Norion pushed his tongue inside the tight butthole.

Norion ate at it for a while, playing with his own dick before returning to Uer's dick taking it in his mouth, sucking it, bobbing his head up and down faster until Uer gave a groan orgasming his dry orgasm in his mouth. Norion pulled on his dick until he felt his orgasm overtake him.

He lay next to Uer hugging him. "Ohh…that was…" Norion giggled at the younger boy's mumbling. "So I take it you liked this? You smell really nice you know that?" Norion gave him a peck on his lips. Uer just hugged him close drifting off to sleep.

Norion looked at the sleeping figure next to him, a sad look on his face. "Aer'andil…I hope you know what you're doing 'cause this will probably end up breaking his heart." He thought to himself. The door made a cracking noise. Norion looked at it but saw no one there, he fell asleep.

Imer had placed the rose of the desert, a blond rose native to Oghelle's southern regions, where he had been instructed, he now sat in his room, in a chair, his hands holding his face, his elbows on his knees.

The window creaked open, Imer shot up, his hand going straight for his sword.

"I am here on behalf of the High-King of the Elves. The plan is this. Find a way to make the King's son call Shaghk-ka on you, kill him. Tomorrow you are to meet with the Queen for breakfast." The hooded man told him.

"You work for the High-King or the Vaghish?"

"Both? Either? Neither? Do as you are instructed, the Queen is important, meet with her."

"Why would the Queen want to help me, us?"

"She is married to a lunatic, she is also pregnant and her son will not inherit Oghelle's throne unless father and son are removed. She wants this as much as we do, for different reasons but she does. We want to remove the Darkness from the throne, so do you I take it?"

Imer said nothing for a minute or two. "Yes, if my brother remains king he will plunge Elaria into war and chaos, already he plans attacks on our southern neighbors."

"We know, it is being taken care of, his army will march against the Orkhavocs, not against the other humans."

"I thought the Elven King wanted to protect them?"

"You can't protect against a scorpion who still has possession of his stinger."

"What does that mean?" Imer inquired.

"Your children will be safe if you follow the path laid out before you." The man left without answering.

Imer did not sleep that night.

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