Prologue – Secrets in Shadows
Old Avalon rested quietly. Protected from intrusion by Mneventh’s power, the old bricks and mortar unnaturally quiet. Silent in the black. The Bodach and most of the Kenku had retired many hours earlier, but outside three figures met under the cover of shadow.
“I prefer the broadsword,” said Galford. “Cuts both ways. I can use a shield. I’m not as skilled with a blade I suppose as you.”
He handed one of Kuyin’s katana blades back to him.
“I use the back of my blade as often as the front,” Kuyin Answered.
“I suppose you are a pacifist,” clucked Galford.
Kuyin slid the katana back into its sheath. His eyes then flicked out towards the darkness, aware suddenly of an approaching figure. Galford turned his body to match the direction of Kuyin’s gaze.
“You’re pretty quiet, for a giant slobbering lizard,” Galford said with cluck.
Mneventh’s majestic gold body emerged from the tree line.
“Funny. Kuyin why don’t you give your overgrown pet a cracker?”
Mneventh’s deep whisper echoed outwards in watery bass.
“Prettybird!” Galford accidently let out, embarrassed at himself.
The three gathered in a circle, prepared to discuss their secrets in the shadows.
The mighty Minotaur looked at himself in the reflection on the water. Cut. Bruised. He had taken many blows in the battle previous but remained unbowed, one of the few of his comrades who had not fallen. Still, they lost the battle. The sting of defeat did not sit well with Iroas. Squad Ten would be accompanying the Hokuten on the tour and he would be left behind.
He scooped the water forward with his hands and splashed his face, cleaning his wounds, most of them were superficial and would not require attention. Iroas returned to his barracks. On his bed, something caught his eye. Shiny. Out of place. A gift only the hands of a minotaur could appreciate.
A note attached.
Sorry we kicked your ass.
The fire burned so bright the sky lit up like daylight. The flames burned impossibly hot. The crumbling resemblance of a house barely visible in the pure white flames. The screams had long ago ceased to pierce the night, yet the fire raged on, slave to the will of the figure standing in the clearing at a distance.
Hulking. Imposing. The demon cocked its head to the side enjoying the spectacle of immolation and ash. His servant cowered to his left, another subject of his will.
“How long will you let it burn master?”
“I can taste the sin in this place. It must be cleansed with fire.”
His eyes lit up with these words, increasing the burning rage before him.
“My liege has made his wishes clear. Every Sithardson shall taste my flame and be unmade.”
One Thousand Birds
The air crackled to life with the electrical current surging through Toshiba’s arm. The sound of a thousand birds chirping accompanied the flashes of power. At the top of his lungs Toshiba belted out the nonsensical attack word – CHIDORI! – Cutting lose with the full force of the current he struck the practice rock in front him, obliterating it with an ear splitting crack.
At a distance Kakashi applauded his student.
“Well done. Just remember that Chidori is a full on frontal attack and will leave you open to counter attacks. You must charge to use it, but the effect is devastating.”
Toshiba smiled. He could now strike with the power of a thousand armadillos OR one thousand birds. Adorable death.
“A dragon’s memories are passed on the same way physical traits. I should know my parents. I should have their knowledge and experiences, but I do not. Either something about my conception went wrong, or someone is blocking my access to these memories. I have wandered this desert and the surrounding lands, growing my power. I feel drawn to Avalon. It must have something to do with my memories. The Leowolf Knights. I am tied to them somehow.”
Kuyin placed his hand on Mneventh.
“They say my Father betrayed the Leowolf Knights. That he was an high ranking member of the cult of Tiamat. If this is true my whole life is a lie. Everything my family has stood for was a facade to aid Tiamat. I do not know if I can even trust my own brother. I… I have to know.”
Galford kicked at dirt at his feet.
“Prettydragon! Prettyeffeminateboy! We’ll find the truth!”
Mneventh’s scales sparkled in the moonlight.
“All lies lead to the truth.”