The War Within - A prologue by Taramoc Lurrec

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SUMMARY: A prologue to a Fantasy novel

The plaza was silent. The shadow of the huge temple on the east side was slowly retreating as the sun was rising behind it. The trees scattered around in random fashion exploded in warm colors as the rays of light flooded them.

As he pushed the huge door, Tubal was blinded by the light of the young day. The low noise of the hinges turning disturbed a few doves nearby. They quickly flew towards the nearest tree, disappearing in the bright sky. He walked out of the temple, exhausted. His body was bruised in more spots that he could remember, but there wasn't a single cut on his skin. He was wearing only his usual leather shorts and, to a casual observer, he could have been starting his daily chores just a little earlier. Except for the two massive swords dragging behind him.

Attached to Tubal's wrists were two strings, around ten inches long, and to them the two swords, tied where the hilt is attached to the blade. As he walked through the plaza, with his arms too tired to carry his weapons, the tips of the swords were drawing two parallel lines in the dirt, leaving a sign of his passage.

The buildings around him were silent, but soon everybody would wake up and get ready for the day of the Shadat. This was a very special day, the most important day of the year but nobody could guess how much more then that today would be. Nobody except Tubal. A sudden wave of panic rose inside him. The entire town would have only him to look at in disbelief and, probably anger, for having interrupted a ritual that lasted for millennia. What was he thinking? How could he even fathom to get away with what he had just done?

Hiding! That was the only thing left to do. Find a hole, a place where nobody would come and look for him and then flee as far as he could in the middle of the night. His heart beat suddenly increased. No, it wouldn't work, the city wasn't that big, they would find him. Flee now! Run to the desert! Starving to death was better, yes, better then to face all the people, better then to face his mother.

He was suddenly calm. Exactly as it had happened hundreds of time before, his heart was beating at a normal pace again and a sensation of peace originating from his stomach was spreading in his body, quickly reaching his brain. Tubal kept walking at the same pace, the scratching noise of the swords on the dirt unique sound in the empty streets.

Tubal, Tubal, you never learn... I always watch over you, no reason to be scared. You have done well, and the hard part is almost over. It's time for you to reap the benefits of our agreement. Someone has to show those ignorant fools that they have wasted the last thirty thousand years. Why not you? I can't think of someone who deserves it more.

You have the power to turn upside down your people rigid set of values and rules. You, the lowest of the lowest, coming from generations of slaves, whose life has no value in the eyes of those you serve. They use the burden put on their shoulders as justification for the way they treat you. Like a direct order of an ancient God it's reason enough...

I won't be able from here to see their faces in disbelieve.

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