Wednesday, February 20, 2013
Sharizeen Cor - Post 3
1400 years before the events of Through the Dark Wood, Sharizeen "Sarie" Cor walked the thriving land of Darlandis. This is the third installment of her tale which will have some bearing on the events to follow in the TODTOL universe. If you have not read the first two posts, click HERE.
Having left just in time to avoid becoming one of prince Aeron’s concubines, Sarie Cor made her way swiftly through Underqwall and the districts beyond to the gates of Darlan. As promised she was met there by guards friendly to her and opposed to the younger prince’s plans for her. At the word of Eerid Freen a horse had been saddled and loaded with all the supplies she would need to make the journey to Adrel Teng. It was three days ride to the east to reach the monastery. The road leading there was weatherworn and underused. Early on the second day, the terrain began to rise into a line of low hills. By mid-afternoon, she’d crested them and could see The Cauldron boiling below her—or so the valley of Adrel was called. It was more like a great crater than a valley and the wind seemed to storm at all times through the emerald and golden trees, whipping them to and fro and lending the surface of the forest a look not unlike a boiling cauldron. In the center of it all was a lone hill rising above the forest. Crowning that hill, and delved all throughout it, was the monastery of Adrel Teng.
Sarie had to camp that night in the woods of Adrel and she was surprised to find the trees near her did not boil with the wind. She slept not just soundly but sweetly, her dreams full of joyful wonders. In the morning she awoke refreshed and set off for the monastery. She was surprised by the stillness about her. Not far off she could hear the trees whipping as if the wind raged through them, but all around her the forest was calm—as if the trees and the wind were making way for her.
When she reached the base of Adrel Teng, her horse came suddenly to a halt. There in the path before a great stone arch was a man robed in shades of blue and green like the colors of a peacock’s feather. His hooded cowl was a dark teal and shrouded his face in shadow. The billowing indigo robe that fell open from his shoulders was belted at the waist by yet another shade of blue and revealed an intricate doublet beneath. Sarie noticed the pommel of a short sword rising slightly above his right shoulder. The man’s hands were folded together and his posture implied authority, though not threat.
Sarie hadn’t seen him a moment before and was startled when the horse stopped. Slipping a knife from her belt as stealthily as possible, she waited for him to speak. When he did, his voice held a certain kindness in it that took her back to childhood and conjured visions of her father.
“The trees make way for few.”
She wanted to feel threatened to keep herself on guard, but his voice and the heart behind it were utterly disarming. He continued, “It is a storm that most oft meets a traveler in the valley of Adrel, but even the wind has made way. Your coming was expected, and a room has been prepared. Come. I will show you to your quarters then introduce you to the Scribe.”
Sarie didn’t move. “Show me your face first—your eyes. I will not trust one who has not met my eyes.”
“It is a wise way.” He pulled back his hood, revealing a younger man than she anticipated. He was less than ten years her elder with short-cropped dark brown hair that would have fallen in waves if it were longer. He wore a beard, but it was a young man’s beard; full, but short and trimmed in the fashion of the day. His eyes were a brilliant blue and seemed almost to glow with the colors of his garments. When he looked at Sarie a rush of fear ran through her, a thrill like none she had known before. He smiled and introduced himself. “I’m Thresh Dannan, and I am at your service.”
He being genuine when he says, at my service. It was an odd sensation. There was nothing unwholesome nor anything of self interest in Thresh’s demeanor. Sarie had never met any man like that. Boujh had been like that to a point, but only with her because of their relation. There was something about Thresh Dannan that was utterly captivating. She cleared her throat and took a moment to clear her mind.
“Sharizeen Cor. Yes. I am aware.”
Sarie puzzled. “I had no idea Captain Freen had sent word so far ahead.”
“I know of no Captain Freen.”
“Then how do you know my name?”Surprised she would ask, Thresh cocked his head a little looking bemused. “From the Scribe. It was he who told me to wait here for you each day these last two months. As I said, Sarie, your coming has been expected—or rather foretold.”
With a desire that conquest should drive sorrow from his heart—and his father’s mandate Come not before me again until the infant in you is removed driving his soul—Kin Lash boarded his ship, the Perilous Dawn, and set sail for Western Pyree.
The great island country of Pyree was once a garden of delight in a world of warriors and kings. Resting halfway between Coriaer and Darlandis, it was an ideal waypoint in ones travels between the two nations. The gold mines of Pyree were the envy of many kings and emperors, but their generosity and peaceful ways earned them the protection of Darlandis. For nearly three hundred years—while the line of good Darlandan kings remained—their land prospered. The lords of Pyree sent emissaries to other lands to learn of their cultures and make record of them, and in time they amassed the greatest library of the ancient world—the Library of Endbredth. Their knowledge and their wealth were unsurpassed.
In the days of Ellerion and the wicked kings who followed, Pyree was besieged by one nation after another. The Darlandans who had been stationed in Pyree and remained faithful to the good kings rebelled, taking up arms and protecting the island. The great distance from Pyree to the nations that desired to claim it was much of its protection. At least a month of sea travel lay before any who desired to claim that land. After many failed attempts, the malicious enterprise of Pyree’s enemies was cast aside, but never again did the people of Pyree send out emissaries. The Darlandans and other foreigners who had taken up the fight, settled and married among the peoples of Pyree. In only a few generations the peaceful island broke into factions. Those who wished to continue building the great Library of Endbredth migrated to the east nearer to the library. The west and its gold mines drew those more warlike in mind. In due course war broke out and Pyree was split in two.
In the days of Faydregd Moree, chieftain of Western Pyree, a great cataclysm struck the island and the whole of Eastern Pyree was swallowed by the sea along with the library of Endbredth. Faydregd claimed his dark arts had cursed the east causing their destruction, and all those who lived and remained faithful to the east were either killed or joined the west. In the years that followed the people of Western Pyree grew more warlike and hostile to any who landed on their shores.
By Kin Lash’s day Western Pyree was as uncivilized a nation as any in the world and served as a proving ground for Coriaeran warriors to test their mettle. Returning with the head of a Pyreean warrior brought great honor to any Coriaeran who accomplished the feat, and many a young Coriaeran died in the attempt. Kin Lash had hired or purchased the finest warriors and mercenaries that money could buy and intended to bring back more than just the head of a Pyreean. Kin Lash was certain he would succeed.I will bring back the Pyreean chieftain alive and claim the island for Coriaer. My father believes me an infant, but that will not last long. When the peoples see I have accomplished what no king in our history has, my father’s time upon the throne will end and I shall have vengeance for my heart and for Lerasea.
To be continued.... in Post 4
I hope you're enjoying the ancient history of Zam's world. Zam's story is almost out in paper back. I expect in the next seven days it should be available. I will post as soon as it is official. Thanks for riding along on this journey with me.