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A Bard's Tale

This is a story about my travels into the new world. A world that had been abandoned long ago and that we were now returning to; full of the unknown, of wonder and possibility. This is the story of adventure, of dangerous monsters and courageous heroes. I know what you are thinking, that you have heard many stories like this before and perhaps you have, but this….This is my story.

The day before the portal to the new world was opened, I found myself on a hill overlooking the city, gazing at the sun setting and ushering in the night. A feint breeze carried the sounds of merriment and celebration, laughter and snippets of song as the people beneath me celebrated the opening of the portal. The sun sank lower, a red disk being chased away by the darkness in the never-ending cycle of day and night and the first twinkling of stars started to appear. This would be the last time I saw a sunset in this world, as I too would be travelling through the portal. I always enjoyed watching the sun setting, and tonight was particularly perfect, with a beautiful red hue, and a sky empty of clouds so you could see the stars clearly as night came. It was as if the world knew that we would be moving on, and wanted this last night to be special. A farewell gift to the world that had given me life. If I was a cleric I would have said a prayer to whatever god they worshipped, thanking them for this gift, but that isn’t my way. I am but a wondering Bard, moving from place to place, drifting like the wind. The wind, it was so comforting to me, the way it caressed my face like a tender lover, helping push me in the correct direction, always moving forwards. It blew now across my face, softly, tenderly putting my whole body at ease. Times like this, I just wished more than anything to be able to stop time, to let this moment go on and on forever.

Alas, I do not have that power, and soon the light of day vanished completely and darkness enveloped the world. Now don’t get me wrong, a clear night sky is almost as beautiful as the sunset, but with the night comes the cold, enough to stir me from my post on the hill and descend down into the city to join the celebrations. I don’t like crowds, so found myself heading down one of the dark alleyways that crisscrossed the city, towards my favourite tavern. These alleyways were a haven for bandits and thugs, so it was no real surprise that I was only about half-way down the alley when I felt a blade at my neck.

“Hand over your money, and I’ll let you live”

Sigh, really? How cliché can you get? These thugs really had no style at all. It was bad enough being accosted on a beautiful night like tonight without being bored to death by these idiots. At another time I would have enjoyed playing around with these fools, but I was tired and wanted to just be indoors with my feet up and a pint of ale in my hand. Still, to give this one his due he at least had a decently sharp blade, and knew a little of how to use it. Not that it mattered too much, and within 5 seconds I was walking out of the alleyway, leaving the stunned thug behind with a broken wrist for his trouble. I stopped under a street lamp to examine the knife I had acquired from him. As I suspected, good quality steel and well looked after, although much too light to be used for melee combat. Still, might be useful at some point.

“Been having fun in the alleyways again Aaron?”

I smiled at the familiar voice, turning to look at the brute of a man standing across the street from me.

“Been spying on me have you Brane?”

Brane shrugged “I’m just making sure you live long enough to keep up to your end of the deal that’s all.”

My grin widened “You should have more faith in me old friend, especially with the amount of times I’ve had to save your hide over the years.

Brane laughed heartily and clapped an iron-clad hand on my shoulder, with enough power to make my knees buckle. “Come, let’s see about that drink you owe me.”

And with that I was practically pushed into the nearest tavern, not that I gave much resistance. After all, Brane’s influence as the leader of the expedition to the new world was the one who got me my ticket out of this hellhole. Just before we went inside I gazed up at the stars and wondered what it would be like in this new world. Will it be the similar to our world, with the same day and night, the same kind of grass and trees? Or would it be completely different? I guess I had to wait until tomorrow to find out. Tomorrow couldn’t come soon enough.


  • Really! Awesome! I especially liked the descriptive part regarding the sunset(I always do when i read books), but the general feeling was almost as good. Keep up the good work!
  • Thanks for the kind feedback. I'm in the process of writing Part 2 which I will post as soon as it's done.
  • Part 2

    The day had arrived and it seemed like the whole city was up early to see it. Even before the Grand parade that was scheduled at midday, people were lining the streets in anticipation, and the city was alive with the spirit of excitement and wonder. After a thousand years, the portal to the abandoned world would finally be opened, but before that we had to do the parade. Ugh, the parade was the one part of this whole thing that I wish I didn’t have to do. Being paraded round the streets like a circus animal. Being in the spotlight, in front of all those people was definitely not my style at all. But alas, I am a man of my word, and part of my deal to get on the expedition was to do the parade as well. What a waste of time, all so the lords of the city could show off how great they are.

    I too was up early and so went back to the hill where I had watched the sun set last night. The sun was just rising above the hills as I arrived under the tree, casting a warm welcoming light on the hill. I smiled, this was much more welcoming than any crowds. I slung my coat over a low branch of the tree and drew my sword. I closed my eyes, breathed deeply and begun my daily exercises. Slow measured movements of the sword, slicing and stabbing, while in my mind’s eye I weaved through my enemies, cutting them down one by one. To someone watching it probably looked more like a dance than combat, but do not be fooled. Many have thought my sword just for show, and quickly afterwards realised their mistake, usually losing an arm in the process.

    For a while I was able to lose myself in the movements, forgetting everything as I focused on the sword, an extension of myself. Nothing existed but my body, my sword, and the wind. No matter what, the wind was always there, driving me onwards. My constant companion. The sun was approaching its zenith by the time I returned to the world. With a sigh I sheathed my sword and donned my coat. The moment of punishment had arrived. Grudgingly I made my way down to the meeting point where the parade was to begin, and as soon as I arrived I felt my heart sink even further. The rest of the expedition were there, decked out in their finest armour, metal chest guards and helmets polished to perfection, with not a spec of dirt to be seen. I grimaced and looked down at my own attire, covered in a light coating of dust, which I hurriedly tried to get rid of, although it didn’t seem to do anything.
    I stepped out of the shadows and, ignoring the questioning looks I got from the soldiers, I went and stood with the group of Rangers whose job it was to scout the survey the wilderness. Even they were decked out in their best uniform, green capes stirring in the breeze, bows and arrows strapped to their backs. I did my best to blend in but was soon spotted by possibly the most foul creature that ever lived.

    “What is that filthy vagabond doing here? We’re about to start the parade!”

    This annoying high-pitched whine came from a man atop a magnificent black stallion, the best money could buy, dressed in Gold plated custom made armour. Lord Malian, one of the nobles of the city. He guided his steed right next to me and glared down on me with enough scorn and contempt you would think I was a fly in his soup. I should have known he would be here, looking to claim glory for the expedition despite not doing anything at all, pompous git.

    “Leave this area, peasant, and go and join the rest of the city-folk. Be gone!”

    “Wait, Lord Malian. He is meant to be here.”
    The noble turned to face Brane, who too was riding a horse, a light brown gelding, and glared at him.

    “You know this peasant, Commander?”

    Brane smiled through gritted teeth, “Why yes I do, he is the Bard I told you about, the one who will be documenting our journey through the portal.”

    “Ah yes, I remember now. I hope his writing is better than his appearance. Make sure you write all about my heroic deeds in the new world, Bard. The world deserves to hear of the brave Lord Malian!”

    I had to bite my lip to keep from laughing. Brave Lord Malian? What a joke! Who was he kidding? He’d never been so much as punched let alone anything close to a fight. Mark my words, the first sign of danger and he will run and hide. All the nobles were like that, thinking that having lots of money made them better than everyone else. Still, let the little princess have his dreams, for they will soon be shattered the moment he moves away from his cosy mansion and realises that the world isn’t all about money. I smiled and bowed to the lord as he turned away, riding to the head of the column with Brane.

    And so the march began. 200 soldiers and 50 rangers making up the expedition through the portal. We walked through the city to wild cheers from the citizens, throwing flowers down on us from the windows while the sun gleamed on the soldiers armour, truly a sight to behold. All through the city we marched until we arrived in front of the portal. Standing there, in their official blue ropes, stood the High mages. It was their duty to open the portal and send us to the new world. Once everyone in the expedition had filed into the plaza where the portal stood, the mages all turned, forming a semi-circle in front of the portal. The entire plaza went quiet as everyone watched the mages work.

    At first there was no sign of anything extraordinary going on, but then I felt a slight tingling on the back of my neck. The sensation grew until I felt like I was surrounded by a cloak of lightning. I glanced to either side of me and it seemed I wasn’t the only one feeling it. Magical energy had engulfed the plaza and its effects were felt by everyone in it. So this is the power of the high mages. I had never witnessed them in action before, and a part of me was scared at the power they could unleash. I looked towards them now, for they had all raised their arms to the sky and the energy surrounding me disappeared, or rather it had moved. In front of the portal a great ball of magical energy, so strong it was visible to the naked eye, had appeared. It grew larger and larger as more and more energy was fed into it until suddenly it shot into the portal, expanding to fill the space with a bright blue pulsing light.
    The light stabalized and the mages all lowered their arms. One of them turned to face us and in a weary voice pronounced that the portal was now open. The crowd cheers with renewed vigor and the expedition started moving towards the portal. One by one the lines of soldiers disappeared through, and then it was my turn. I took a deep breath to calm my nerves and stepped up to the glowing blue of the portal. My adventure was finally about to begin.
  • The journey into the unknown. Well done loved it!

  • Another excellent story teller, with an excellent story!
  • Please keep it up! *thumbs up*
  • Thanks for all the lovely comments guys. I'm writing part 3 and should have it done soon.
  • This is awesome. I am looking forward to reading more! I'm in the process of creating my character and his story. its so much fun
  • Also waiting for an update to this story of a fellow bard
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