Episode 13: The Might of Cyrith
I awoke washed up on the shore near the ruins of Lilyfield. Confused and alone I tried getting up, but my body was slow to respond. Balthazar, Miriam and Ilyana were nowhere to be found. I fear that they may have been taken by the sea. A day had passed. I took refuge in one of the abandoned houses of Lilyfield. There I tried to remember the events that led me here.
A storm raged on as the magic of Balthazar and Commander Bryce clashed. Somehow our ships met on the way to Daltrith. I used what magic master Balthazar had taught me to attack the other ships in their fleet. There were four and we were but one. Miriam couldn’t fly in this weather so instead she used her magic to try and deflect the light rays being shot at us. Her reflexes were very impressive, she could cast a deflection shield in an instant. Balthazar had explained that many of her senses would become enhanced as she mastered shapeshifting. Meanwhile Balthazar was casting a powerful energy storm to counter a continuous ray of light that the enemy commander was casting. They were seemingly locked in a stalemate. It was evident that very powerful magic was being used. Not only was the Ether chaotic, but it was having a strong effect on the currents and weather above us. For a moment Balthazar dropped to one knee. I feared he would not have the strength to fight the commander on his own. Then came the decisive blow. Bryce cast five small light orbs behind him. He was able to conceal his attack from Balthazar and Miriam was too busy with the attacks from the other boats. My own spells began to have an effect, I was able to hit one of the ships and blasted away one of its sides. The light from Bryce’s spell increased forcing Balthazar to use more of his own power to try to hold the force of the attack back. The five light orbs rose from behind Bryce and launched towards our ship. We got hit from three sides when Miriam shifted her attention to the orbs. Two were deflected, but three hit the ship and destroyed it. As the pieces of wood cracked and flew off I saw Miriam attempt to transform and fly away, but she did not have the energy to do so. Balthazar was gone. I did not see him. Ilyana had been aiding the sailors in the lower decks so there was nothing I could do but try to project a protective ward that would see us all to safety. After I cast that spell, I lost consciousness.
My frustration built as I thought about how I may have lost another master to the Lightbringers. I did not want to lose hope. The spell I used must have worked, but currently I had no way of making sure, or did I? Balthazar taught me a little about sensing the Ether more accurately. Perhaps if I meditated for some time a path would reveal itself.
After about an hour of meditation all I felt was hunger. The Ether here would not lead me anywhere for now. I decided to raid the stores of the abandoned inn, maybe I would find something edible. A lower cellar had some dried meat and fruit preserves that were just enough to keep me from starving. Now, originally I thought that the Ether showed me nothing special. A few minutes after exiting the inn I felt a minor tug on the flow. There was a battle happening nearby and dark magic was being used. Could it be Balthazar perhaps? I ran as fast as I could and used some of my magic to give me a bit of a boost.
I arrived at a hut deep in the forest. Inside someone fought against a pair of soldiers. They did not see me approach so I put my back against the open door and looked inside. Miriam was fighting using a piece of a broken table. I saw her try to cast a spell but I believe she was out of energy. Since I had meditated for a long time I was ready to blast away the soldiers, and so I did. My spell conjured up a dark cloud that took the shape of large hands. These pushed away the soldiers and held them against the walls. “Miriam! Let’s go!”, she saw me and let out a sigh of relief. “Kaiden! Thank goodness! I was about to lose all hope of any help”, she was a bit bruised but mostly fine. We ran into the forest and concealed ourselves. The soldiers tried to find us but they had no magic of their own so they could not track us.
“Those Lightbringers we faced at sea were tough, much more so than the battalions that roam the continent”, Miriam mentioned to me. We settled on a small clearing inside the forest, near a stream. “They were indeed. I hope my spell protected everyone. How did you reach the hut?”. “Well, I was encased in a magic bubble so I guess your spell worked. The bubble protected me until I reached the shore. Once there I headed into the forest. I used my magic to search around but it was late and I was tired. The hut served as a temporary refuge until those soldiers arrived and saw me there. I tried to repel them with my magic, but I didn’t notice there was an Ether void nearby that sapped me of energy. Had I been there any longer I would have lost consciousness”, Miriam looked to the sky, “I want to soar again”. I told her we should regroup in Lyre. That night I placed protective wards around our small camp as well as a concealing spell. The feat drained my energy, but it was necessary in order to rest well.
Just before dawn I woke up from a nightmare where the Lightbringers had found and killed us using their purging spell. It was horrifying. Hopefully we will reach Lyre in about a day.