By Alicia Steen
As the memory of that first adventure fades from consciousness, Parkr and James find themselves again staring at the black sword thrust in the wood flooring in front of them. Daylight is waning to twilight, causing the room to become gradually darker. As the light from the lone curtained window dims, the black blade before them seems to stand out more in the evening light.
Parkr speaks first.
“That old sword Mykl picked up is the blade he’s now wielding.”
“Yeah,” comes James’ reply. “I knew, knew, that Mykl had traded his Gathyran blade for another, leaving behind his title as prince, yet even still I never expected him not to answer the summons.”
“Me either. I fully expected to see Mykl fighting at father’s side when I came.”
“As it was, that overgrown satyr nearly took all of us out – you, me, and our father. That should have been an easy victory, but overcoming the shock of Mykl not appearing was not easy mid-battle.”
“We can’t fight like this. Not when our focus is so distracted.”
“Then it’s a good thing Gathyra is willing to wait. After all, the princes may lead Gathyra, but the Ancient of Days is her wall. We are not bound to any fate other than that we choose to follow.” James takes a long look at Parkr. Parkr’s eyes betray the intensity of his thoughts, though his voice remains quiet. “So then,” James asks, though he knows the answer, “do we follow Mykl down his path or trust in the hope of our forefathers?”
Parkr stands. “His hope most often seems to hold the longest of odds, but all those who trust in the Ancient of Days would have it no other way. I wish to discover for myself what they held so dear.” Parkr strides to the sword. “As for Mykl, he has made his decision.”
James joins Parkr, and together they grasp the hilt of the sword. “Now we make ours. For that hope which never shall disappoint.”
“For the day our forefathers saw and longed for.”
The brothers pull Mykl’s former sword from the floor with one smooth motion. Parkr places the sword, blackened by dragon fire, in a sheath next to his own blade. A scar remains in the wood flooring, a witness to their visit.
Together the brothers leave the room of reflection, shutting the door behind them. Nothing has changed outside the room, and yet everything has changed. May shadow tremble, for the princes of Gathyra are going to war.