Thursday, August 28, 2014

I. Counsel of the Wizards

"No!" The voice was coming from an elderly man in long flowing robes of a midnight blue. His face was kindly and wise but hard and grim at the moment, and a long grey beard fell to his waist.

"No!" he repeated slamming his fist on the table. He was addressing eleven grim men, most of which had long flowing beards and cloaks.

"Even though our strongest wizards have failed," he said, "We must not give up!" he ended hoarsely.

The man speaking was named Merlin Hawk and he was one of the most famous wizards in the lands.

A young man stood up.

"But, he said, "The Nâzungûl is too strong, we can never win."

He sat down.

"That may be so, Patterner," replied Merlin Hawk. "But we must try."

The Nâzungûl was an evil sorcerer, who eons ago tried to inslave middle earth. It seemed as if he would succeed, for he was strong and had many armies, but he was finally driven back by the grey elves.

But now, years after the Grey Elves had passed over the sea, the Nâzungûl had again arisen with the same motive.

Now, the twelve masters of Rôke (Patterner, Elf Star, Namer, Eagle Sun, X-vu, Sparrow-Snake, Merlin-Hawk, Door Keeper, Healer, Shining Bane, and Elven-Fair) were holding an emergency counsel.

"We need a warrior, or a party of warriors who could get to the Nâzungûl by stealth, and then confront him!" said another man, Elven-Fair.

For a moment there was silence, and then a man in shimmering, light-green robes and a long flowing beard of glossy white snow curled round him.

"Speak, Sparrow-Snake," commanded Merlin-Hawk.

The man raised a long bony finger and pointed east-wards. The wrist was now reviled to show small, surprisingly beautiful bracelet, which then moved showing themselves to be small, lethally beautiful snakes, their heads and tails tied together. He said slowly, "I have heard tales of a blind warrior, with inhuman skill living in a town in the west named Xitia. The warrior's name is Hand."

"But of what use is a blind man to us?" Merlin-Hawk asked.

"It is said that he can see more fully than men with vision," Sparrow-Snake replied. "For his other four senses have grown beyond the limits of human sight."

"Very well. But what is one human against the vast expanses of darkness?" Merlin-Hawk questioned him.

"He is said to have two friends, one an archer who has never missed, the other a girl named Jade-Stone who is skilled in the art of healing."

"Then you must go to Xitia," Merlin-Hawk said.

Next chapter: Xitia.