Journey to the Black Gate
I stand with my father in his large blacksmith shop, while he rubs the gray beard on his face, and his workers are busy making new armor for what is to come. The King has sent out dispatches to all the free lands, Marisa has gone ahead to the capital, for war is coming to his gates. I know all to well what is to come, so I make ready for battle with my family. I find myself looking around the shop full of odds and ends, and seeing many stacks of ingots of different metals. Victor, Samuel and Peter are sizing up different armor pieces, as the smacking of hammer to steel goes on behind them.
The forges are burning hot today, and different workers shape armor to help in the coming battle. Grinding wheels spinning, putting an edge on the blades, they are doing fine work for my father in here. I almost miss this part of my life, I know enough to keep my weapons sharp, but I am far from a grand master in the art of weapons and armor. Yes the open road was my life, but now as I grow older in years, maybe I should have studied under my father longer.
I get my sword and shield pushed into my chest hard by my father, waking me from my deep thoughts. That's right I traded my fathers things to get these new ones, and he wasn't to happy with me returning without his hand made brand. But I got a new kite shield with a dragons head in the middle, and its a dull silver with pointed edges.
It will work great with my bash forward attack, I am told to be the best at knock the enemy on their backsides.
Then I look at my new sword, its fairly long, broad, smooth blade made of a strange steel like metal, that glows a yellowish red, like its on fire, but it fades after a short while to shiny slivery color. It feels very smooth to the touch, and is very strong and very sharp so I am told by my father. He tested the blade on an oak block, and it cut in clean through, and did lose it's sharp edge. In fact it look to get even sharper after the strike.
I look at the cross-guard that has a decorative dragon head on each side, a large dragon coils around the blade for it's holder. Father tells me he has never seen a blade such as this, and to take care for it looks to have powerful magic built into it.
Now my father hangs a large golden amulet of a dragons head, with many blue gem eyes, and it holds in it's mouth a shield ringed with more blue stones. It feels warm to the touch, and I take it in my right hand to look at it closer. My father takes it from my hand, to place it against my chest, then he presses on the largest stone with a click.
I can't believe what happens next, as metal seems to pour from the edges of the dragons head, taking shape around my body. Before I can react, it forms armor around my body, and I am completely covered in golden plate armor from my neck to my feet. I try to understand what just happened, what type of magic is this, not knowing is the worst part. Was this amulet part of the alters gifts to me?
" It looks almost like the same armor I gave you son.", says my father as he wipes a cloth over the chest plate. " But that charm looks to have fused itself with my work and changed it a bit.", then he presses another area on the collar of the plate, and a helm shapes itself over my head.
" Yep, that's my armor I gave you alright, every piece of it in place. Whatever that amulet is, it looks to have taken your armor and made it into some thing more. But what I wonder? ", then I watch as my father takes up a sword, and he strikes at me.
I step back away from his blow, but he still finds his mark, and the sword shatters into pieces. My father looking at the hilt that is left behind, lets out a whistle at what he just seen.
" That's a powerful suit you have their son, very power indeed, you best take care of that. I just wish I had more time to test out the limits of what it can do. "
" But father I don't remember getting this charm with my sword and shield. I don't even know how I got back home. ", I put my sword and shield down on a table next to me, and press the jewel in the middle once more. The armor just as quickly as it formed to my body, not retreats back into the charm around my neck.
" Yep, that is something special you have there, never lose it or give it away son. At least to anyone not part of this family. But we have no more time to play around, I need to get your brothers ready for war. "
" What? I thought you where against them fighting? That's what you told me when I left years ago, that I shouldn't be a fighter, and take up your craft to carry on the family name making armor and weapons. ", I say giving my father a concerned look.
" I know son, but these be bad times now, and I will fight to protect my family and friends. Your brothers have already signed up to join the other troops on the front lines. They are men now, and have to follow what their hearts tell them too. So I will join them in battle too, and protect our home as best I can.", says my father as he looks back at his other three sons.
" Now Granthor my son, take up you sword and shield, go to the capital, and bring honor the name of Stormhand. We will be fine over here, so go my son, make me proud of you.", he grips me on both shoulders, then hugs me.
My other brothers come over to wish me well, and I say my goodbyes to them. They return to finish up getting ready, and I can't help but wonder. Will I see them again? I don't let bad thoughts enter my head, as I grab up a travel pack, and head off to the Capital to see what the King wishes of me.
To Be continued.................