One year, two months. I’ve been training diligently for a war that feels both so close and so far away. Garalith assures me that the first battles are likely to happen soon. There is a place in Argumand called The Fields of Sorrow. It is there that the portals that link to Alfarand will appear. That place is the interdimensional intersection that allows travel between Alfarand and Argumand. Garalith explained many things in the time we’ve spent together. For example, the role of the guardians in Argumand. Each of them is awarded control over a particular segment of the magical whole. They watch over the balance of magic and train along with people to provide help wherever they are needed. At some point in the past said help may have included Alfarand, but something happened that triggered the first war. Garalith was not present at the start of the first war, but knows that it was devastating for both sides.
Among other subjects that Garalith explained, he mentioned that the population of Argumand was always pretty scarce. The few people that arrived there often did so from Earth. A few were chosen to lead their lives as wizards. Many others inherited their power, much like I did. There are no countries established. Most of the time magic is used to maintain a few farmlands around the continent. Although we’re currently stationed close to The Fields of Sorrow, Garalith and I have been able to visit a number of villages. Some of them are very much like the one we settled in, abandoned. There are not enough travelers to maintain steady commerce so many villages collapse in a short time. People here could be best described as nomads. Only three villages are large enough to remain constant and their biggest advantage is the amount of wizards that live in them.
Garalith and I have spent the past week patrolling the area of the fields. Not too long ago a low rumble was felt at night. A distortion has now appeared in a long swath of the fields. This is evidence of the portals beginning to form. Now it felt like war was literally at our doorstep. Our village, which we ended up calling Liriath, was now bustling and the conflict started scaring away some of the people. A small few said they would provide what support they could. For us wizards there was little risk. Our spells can be sent off from relative safety. Regardless, I promised to do my best to protect them. I had grown close to these people and learned much of the world to just abandon them to their luck against Alfarand.
When the portals finally formed armies began to pour through. Their savage assault tore through the fields. Many of the wizards created a protective barrier around Liriath. This forced the armies of Alfarand to take another route. Meanwhile we bombarded them with spells. I was surprised to see strange mechanical constructs that fought alongside the soldiers. Some of the machines resembled golems, humanlike shapes that held incredible strength. I thought of the movies I saw back on Earth. Then there were also other bipedal constructs that could lock themselves to the ground, their upper body had a spear cannon that could launch a spear with such force that even our sturdiest barriers had difficulty repelling them. I shuddered to think what it could do to a person. In the span of a few hours we were able to push back the invaders temporarily, before they mustered their strength and won the fields.
The days blurred together. So much so that two months passed. Two months of unwavering conflict. Many of the wizards were now exhausted. A few had been captured, something we did not anticipate. The armies of Alfarand avoided continuing their advance toward Liriath, but instead took to invading and destroying other small towns that lacked the protection of the more powerful wizards. Sometimes they invaded a town, only to find it had been abandoned for years. They don’t really know the conditions of living in Argumand, but then, we don’t know theirs in Alfarand. My curiosity was piqued. I needed to know, so I asked Garalith. “I know little of Alfarand. Before my time there was conflict. We never had any reason to venture forth. Some of the other guardians often wonder as you do. Of those, only a few suspect there is some sort of political power behind the invasion force, or else they would not be so successful”, he said. All he knows is the conflict he was born in. Perhaps we could find a way through and learn more, but for now we needed to focus on our defense of Liriath. It remained our best bet in keeping the invading forces occupied.