Penthanian Thief of Set
Mine is not a tale for the faint of heart or those of a weak stomach. Yet this the story and testiment of my life so far.
I began my life as a child of virtue and priledge. My father, an Air Mage of considerable esteem among our kind and keeper of one of the sacred scrolls of UnMagick. My mother ahh.. my mother. Now, there are those who will accuse our kind of being unable to feel our hearts. They never knew my mother the way I did. She was always so kind to me. Outwardly, she appeared cold and uncaring, but she had chosen the path of the Psion. This allowed her mind and her thoughts to always be with me. Through her skill, I was able to feel the love she was unable to show externally.
My early years were spent running around my Father's mansion, shouting orders at the Hithual cooks, commanding Human servants, and chasing the Go-Blin-Al from the trash pile. I was a 6 year old Queen and my Father's modest mansion was my castle. I had not a care in the world. But all that would change.
Not soon after my 13th birthday, it was decided my family would move to Spur and I would attend the famed Spurian Academy. I had shown talent in the ways of magick with some small simple gestures my father taught me. It was my dream to follow the path of my father and become an air mage. With that, my father sold our mansion, packed up our belongings and sent them via caravan to Spur ahead of us.
I still remember the night we left. The mansion was empty and hollow. My footsteps echoed throughout the house. From near the door, my mother called me to her. I hurried to her as quickly as my manners could allow.
She stood by the open door and bid me to come closer. I felt her presence touch my mind. "The night is cold my Jewel." Her thoughts touched mine.. She pulled me close and wrapped me in a soft warm cloak. Kneeling down, she look into my eyes. "Sharsis, you have made me proud." she thought to me.
I smiled. Those simple words ment so much to me. For a moment we stayed there, lost in each other's crystaline eyes. The moment was interrupted as my father entered from the front door. My mother stood to stand by his side. My father looked down at me.
"Come child.." He said, as he offered his hand to me. I grabbed his hand and he swept me to his side, engulfing me in his thick white robes. We turned and he led me outside. My mother was right, there was definatly a winter chill in the air. I stood at the top of the front steps, wrapped in my father's robes and inhaled the night air deeply.
At the base of the steps stood ready an elegant carriage led by 2 white horses. Sitting at the front of the carriage was our human driver. A man who's name I can no longer recall. Near the door was my father's trusted bodyguard Raggis, a thugian of considerable size and girth.
Raggis reached towards the delicate handle on the door of the carriage with his massive hand. With practiced and strained refrain, he swung the door open and bowed deeply to my father.
My Father left me and walked down the steps, followed closely by my mother. I followed in turn. My father was first to enter the carriage, again followed by my mother. I stepped up to the door and paused. I glanced at the massive thugian sternly. He grinned broadly at me and shot me a quick wink. I thrust my nose in the air in mock royality and stepped into the waiting carriage. Raggis closed the door and took his position next to the driver. I nuzzeled my mother's soft red robes and drifted off to sleep. That was the last time, I truely knew peace. I awoke to the death cry of our human driver.
"Sire.. Assassins!" Raggis cried out.
The carriage swayed and bounced as Raggis lept from his seat into battle. Raggis let loose a warcry that was strangely cut short. My Father and Mother stared at each other, showing no emotion. The silence was deafening but short lived. Several erry chittering noises along with words spoken in a sharp sounding lauguage filled the carriage.
"Arachs... " My father cursed silently. "They are after the scroll" My mother quickly returned. My father nodded quickly. Wet slapping noises came from every direction as the sound of the arachs chittering became muffeled. They had covered the carriage with their webs. "How many?" My Father asked as he shot a quick glance towards my Mother. My mother closed her eyes as he head began to glow softly. "9" She stated plainly.
Again a warcry shattered the muffeled silence. Raggis had broke free of his webs, and he wasn't too happy. A sickening crack followed by a painful hiss filled the carriage. "8.." My Mother corrected.
My father's eyes grew dark as he leaned back in the soft carriage seat. Almost silently he begane to speak phrases in a tongue unknown to me. Suddenly, a strong wind stuck the carriage with great force. The nearby trees groaned under the strain of the powerful wind.
Without a change of expression my father looked at me and said "Cover your ears, child". I quickly complied with his command, thrusting my hands to my ears. Not a moment too soon, as the gathering storm unleashed it's fury. Explosions of sound and light came from all around me. I felt the world itself was about to tear appart from the noise.
Then it happened. A large bolt of lightning stuck the carriage with great force. The carriage erupted in a fury light, fire and broken wood. The explosion sent me and my family flying into the storm. I landed several yards from the shattered carriage in the smoldering remains of a fallen arach. It's foul stench and sticky blood covered my body like a disease.
My ears rang sharply. I realized the sharp thunder had ripped my eardrums. Everything around me sounded distant, as if someone shouting at me from a inside a cave.
I pushed myself up to look around. The darkness was held back by the burning carriage. Looking up to the sky I could see the dark clouds retreating with unnatural switness. My father's storm had died as quickly as it had appeared. Near me lay the body of Raggis. His flesh was torn in several places, but the smell of burnt flesh and hair was a testiment of his demise. The bolt that had the arach had also taken Raggis. Such is life. He died in battle, that is how he would have wanted it.
Through the smoke of the carriage, I noticed a faint glow. A glow I knew could be nothing else but my mother. I forced myself to stand, and began to stumble around the carriage towards the glow. As I moved closer, I could see the glow flashing repeatedly from behind some bushes, just beyond the trail. With renewed hope, I pressed my broken body towards the bushes.
Suddenly a force hit my mind, filling it with a blinding flash of pain. It was something that felt familiar, yet I'd never felt it before. I shrugged it off, and continued towards the safety of the bushes and my mother's arms.
My foot hit something hard, causing me to trip and fall painfully into the mud. I rolled over and looked down at the horrific sight before me. It was my mother. Partially covered in webs, her body ripped open in several places. In a panic, I crawled on top of her and shook her violently. Her blood filled eyes opened slowly. Her eyes reflected my look of horror. "Mother.. " I stammered.
"Run" She said with her mind. "Sharsis, run."
Her body went rigid and I felt her presence leave my mind. She was gone. I began to weep uncontrolably. Seconds later, I felt another presence enter my mind and sensed motion behind me. I froze in fear, unable to move. A dark chitter sounded loudly behind me. I spun around quickly and we greeted by the sight of a large female arach, follow closely by 2 smaller males.
I'd always been told as a child to be mindful of arachs. I was even told childhood fables of these monsters who would sneak into houses at night and carry off naughty children. But never before had I seen one up close. And there was no getting closer.
I scrabbled backward through the mud in a vain attempt to escape. The female followed me closely. One of the males said something to her in a sharp and cryptic sounding language. She chittered happily in reply. That's when I snapped, a sensation I'd never known before filled my being with... rage. I lept from the ground and charged the large female.
I did not know the ways of combat, or magick. I simply knew I must destroy those who killed my mother. Somehow, this.. rage, within me could destroy them. I was wrong.
Much to my surprise and horror the large female began to glow softly. Just like my mother! Again, a force hit my mind. But this time it did not bring pain. My rage vanished, and I found myself thinking of nothing but peace, darkness, and sleep.. I slumped to the muddy ground at the feet of my new master.
I will spare you the intimate details of my life thereafter. I will simply relate how I ended up in Spur. The large female had captured me and returned me to her lair. There, with the help of a Frontacian, they conducted experiments on me. Horrible, painful, torturous experiments. From the Frontacian, I learned they were trying to unravel the secrets of UnMagick. They had concluded the UnMagick could somehow be unraveled and twisted to suit their own needs. For years I was punished for the sins of my people.
My torture did not reveal the secrets of UnMagick, it only served to further harden my skin and callus my heart. The arach wanted to kill me at first, for "failing" her, I suppose. But the frontacian had another plan.
Apparently, the cost of the experiments had been high. The frontacian knew of a local tavern, well.. more of a rat hole really. The tavern was owned by an arach and the frontacian knew his business was failing. The frontacian convinced the tavern owner that a great deal of business would be generated by having a young female Pent barmaid and waitress. After all, what would make an arach customer happier then to have the oppertunity to order around and beat a pent, while drinking ale after ale.
The deal was made and I was sold into slavery.
The Tavern had a name I still cannot pronounce, in a costal city who's name I also cannot pronounce. The primary clientelle was made of arachs, and yes, the Frontacian's idea for a pent serving the arachs generated much business. Much to my dismay. Surrounded by the murderers of my parents, and masters of my slavery, I was forced to live. Serving a table was almost always met with a sharp bite, or spray of webs. The tavern owner was cautious about the ammount of damage inflicted on me. Not out of care, of course, but rather protecting an investment.
For years this continued night after night, beating after beating. Looking back I am amazed my spirit was not broken. Perhaps it was my desire for freedom or vengence that kept me going. Perhaps it was my studies. Studies? You may ask? Yes, I spent many a night in cautious study. For you see, this Tavern attracted thieves, murderers and villians like flies to a fallen ork. Often, they would "display" thier skills in boast to fello patrons. All the while I watched... And learned. Eventually, I learned enough thievery skills to make my escape. The escape itself was easy by comparison to the weeks I spent in the wilderness afterwards. The lock on my chamber door was easily picked, and a moonless night covered my escape from the city. But in the wilderness, I was without shelter, warmth or food. I followed the major trade routes, being careful to only travel on the road when I knew I was alone. Eventually I found my way to Spur. At first I attempted to claim my inheritance from the city offices, but a young female pent, covered in mud and wearing tattered scraps for clothing did not help. I was thrown from the offices like a common begger. So, I reverted to the skills I had come to know to keep me alive. Living on what bread I could steal I wondered the streets. Eventually, I came across the thieves guild, or perhaps they found me.. I am not really sure. But they took me in, gave me food, and a warm bed. I am forever greatful to them.
That brings me to today. Gone is my inheritence, and my dreams of mastering the elements. Gone is my Mother, may her soul rest in peace. As for my Father, I do not know. I had summised, the original attack on us was to retrieve my Father's Scroll of UnMagick. I do not know if they were successful. I do not know if he is dead. But a strange part of me wishes that he were. How could he leave my mother and me to die?