Carlton thought over his situation while he rested and healed. The half wyrm blood looked over him like a hawk to make sure that he couldn’t sneak away. It was an annoying pain that was unbecoming of a hero to think about, but he could handle such a thing. He didn’t know about it before, but a demon could manipulate iron, copper, and a few other ores and metals, but silver and gold were two such minerals that he couldn’t do that too easily. To get a weapon made out of such materials, he needed enough funds. The false trap to cause his injury worked perfectly. The annoyance of healing was a side effect.
He should have sent for aid from the guild when the wound was still fresh. It would have showed his seriousness. Instead, he was trapped having to get healed. He considered reopening the injury, but that would be difficult, and won’t likely work. Unless he killed himself doing it of course. As he made his way to the portal stone, he noticed that the demon’s minion was keeping record of the coming and goings of the realm. Getting by it without it noticing him wouldn’t be easy.
It noticed him within moments after he hid close by, causing him to become frozen stiff.
“Ah, the hero. I’ve been expecting you. Go to the coordinates 1983.784x, -402.222y, and -1079.011z. That’s the realm of heroes. That’s where you’re heading to, correct?” (Oul)
Carlton drew his sword, then came out of the bushes. The Oul didn’t even ruffle its feathers in alarm.
“I am four thousand years old, human. I have feathers to spare. I am under orders to report all hostile forces, then subjugate them.” (oul)
The Oul then raised one of its wings and slashed it downward, while three quills landed between the two.
“Test me, I dare you.” (Oul)
Carlton looked at the quills, then lowered his sword. This wasn’t some regular demon minion. It was an experienced and high level enemy, so he wouldn’t have a chance. Carlton moved over to the map display where it showed everything where they were and then his submitted destination. He didn’t let go of his sword until after he was through the portal. Four heavily armored men then greeted him, with the bishop there too, which slightly surprised him.
“My child, you seem hurt. I take it your quest was a failure.” (Bishop)
Carlton took a knee after seeing him.
“Bishop Bartholomew, I’m alive so the quest can go on.” (Carlton)
Bishop Bartholomew waved his hand, causing the four guards to back off and get farther away.
“It has been some time. Let’s eat together before you give your report.” (Bishop Bartholomew)
Carlton then followed the bishop through several rooms, with some of them filled with children training with swords. While others were reading and learning about various things Carlton had to learn when he was their age. After a few more familiar places and faces, they came to the dining hall. There were many young heroes, their teachers, and many members of the covenant, and a few others that didn’t directly belong to the hero guild. Out of habit, Carlton almost sat down with the other students learning to be heroes, but he’s already graduated, and even survived an engagement with a demon. He sat down at the table of the senior heroes, just not directly with them. He still hasn’t earned that right.
However, a few of the younger heroes did flock around him, so he felt obligated to show off his new scar. The dragon’s talon pierced through his shoulder cleanly and was removed carefully. His healing was slow and watched carefully. There was a discoloration and the spot was soft and still tender. He bragged for a little bit, then they got to see a few other scars and hear some more stories. There was about three hours of heavy eating, drinking, and talking before he noticed the Bishop was still waiting for him. He stood from the table, then went to his awaiting superior. Bishop Bartholomew then led him to his private office, were there was a six winged angel waiting for them.
“High One, what an honor.” (Bishop Bartholomew)
The Bishop kneeled, but Carlton didn’t. Honestly, when he thought about it, angels1angelsspecies weren’t exactly what he believed them to be.
“So, this is the hero of the realm that Lousphy watches.” (Watcher Angel)
Carlton moved past the Bishop, then stood in front of the angel.
“Did you know that that angel is a demons2demonsspecies lover?” (Carlton)
The angel grabbed Carlton, then lifted him up to eye level.
“I’ve been a watcher of this realm for tens of thousands of years, child. I have met insolent ones like you countless times, and I have learned exactly the right amount of force to correct almost any situation. I know how to help them complete any quest they are destined, or chosen to do. For the first time, I have been ordered to keep one from their duty. The angel Lousphy is beyond my knowledge, while her rank is equal to mine, but the divine treat her like she’s higher ranked than me.” (Watcher Angel)
The angel dropped Carlton, then he landed on his feet.
“I have been told that the demon wishes to form an alliance with the divine. Being the son of the current Supreme Overlord, he has enemies in every corner of demon society. I’ve been told that he doesn’t wish for his father’s position. In fact, he has grown rather attached to her, but I speak not of what I don’t understand. What I do know though is that the demon allows peace with the divine in his realm. With all the chance he’s given the divine, he’s still the realms master and his word is law.” (Watcher Angel)
The angel then turned his attention to the bishop.
“You don’t need to know what we’re about to speak about. Begone.” (Watcher Angel)
Within moments, Bishop Bartholomew praised the almighty, then left the room while securing the doors behind him. The angel then sat down in bishop’s chair.
“Let me tell you a story child. Sit and I will educate you.” (Watcher Angel)
Carlton took a moment to sit in the seat on the other side of the desk.
“In ages long past, there was the great war. There was eons of fighting and death over every realm. Bids for power changed constantly, and no one knew when they would perish. Even the mighty armies of the divine were nothing compared to some of the onslaughts of the vast hordes they faced. I was there as a foot angel, someone who hasn’t earned anything with their life. An empty shell, you could say. I was one of the rarest sort amongst the angels to leave. Never had an angel left that rank outside of doing something great. Except once. One angel had such strong faith for long without ever waning, that it was noticed soon enough. Some say, He himself bestowed her with a promise of a better life. Others even say that she never did earn the rank. However, Lousphy also left the folds of the foot angels. The watcher of that demon realm. As you know child, an angel’s love for all things is strong. The demon you chose as your enemy was dead at one point. None of his demonic energy remained, but only until he grabbed his sword after Lousphy gave it to him did it come back. If I didn’t witness it myself, I wouldn’t believe it unless He himself told me, but then, I would have doubted his words for the first time. That’s another point that you should learn. Let me tell you how I earned my way from being a foot angel. I was the only survivor of my patrol on the outskirts of what we thought was a secured realm. I was brought to a powerful demon that could crush me with a thought, but his tone and movements suggested that he didn’t need help in any way but with his words. He was pleading…, no, begging for help from me. He was one of the original twelve most powerful demons when the great war started, so I was helpless and weak against him. He gave me a blood oath and his life force, causing me to receive newfound strength that I never know of before. That power has long since faded, but I still have the memory.” (Watcher Angel)
The angel looked at his hands for a long time before balling it up. He wasn’t even slightly out of breath after talking so much.
“From that agreement, the great war ended, and a treaty between demon and angel kind was formed. The treaty is held by the current Supreme Overlord to this day. My duty then on, first and foremost, was to watch over this hollow ground where the agreement between that demon and the divine occurred. From there, my duty grew to watching over this land of heroes and those in it.” (Watcher Angel)
The angel immediately stood after saying that.
“Ever since the blood oath that me and the demon performed, I have felt his presence. I could tell his strength levels in a way. For a long time, they have become weaker and weaker. A civil war amongst the demons is about to begin again, it might have even started already. This demon, David, made a pact with the divine similar to the one his father made a long time ago. In a way, to describe it, if he survives the civil war, then he wins. Not his father’s seat, but his own freedom. He’ll have the choice to choose any path he wishes, which might even be his father’s seat if he changes his mind.” (Watcher Angel)
The angel then sat down again. Carlton looked at the mighty angel, then noticed that his flesh was scarred from ancient battles. From his appearance, he looked like he could still fight them very quickly. The angel had pride, but no arrogance. If there was one, everyone else in the realm would call him their senior and superior. The angel then noticed Carlton observing him, where he noticed that the child wasn’t as awestruck as mostly everyone that’s set eyes on him. Being around the pair of angels for several months likely helped in that matter. There were things he wanted to learn from the child, and he was sure that Carlton wanted to learn things from him too.
“He is too powerful for me now.” (Carlton)
Carlton’s words were no surprise.
“Yes, he is. It would take a small group of heroes now to face him, which you aren’t ready for yet. If a group were to engage him, then the people of the realm wouldn’t blame the demon killing every last one of them. With the enacted treaty, their souls would never reside in a body again. He has played his game well, but you still managed to do something against his plans. By engaging his dragon in a time of weakness, and him being the only one to save her, you forced his hand in becoming your archenemy, and a hero for the people. It’s true that your soul would be bound like any other in his realm, but you’ve still become the hero of his realm. You are the symbol of light and because of this, he must be acknowledged as the darkness to the people. So, to keep the humans in his realm happy, he must let you live because his realm relies on balance to survive and prosper. He keeps it in check until you can balance him out once more.” (Watcher Angel)
Carlton became excited after hearing that.
“So, you’re saying that I’m going to get what I need to kill him?” (Carlton)
The angel looked at Carlton, then slowly shook his head.
“You need three things. Experience, money, and a divine blessing. All three of these things need to be earned child. You will have your own chance to shine, but not for a many number of years. You can choose that path child, or you can be apart of something much greater than yourself.” (Watcher Angel)
The angel then sighed to himself. Like so many youths, Carlton only thought about his goals one sidedly. He likely ignored the entire story that he was just told and missed the hint that he had the opportunity for an even larger legend to be born in his wake. Instead of becoming another footnote in history….
Synopsis: Somewhere in the universe, there was an altar. On it, laid a bloody eye as big as the sun itself. It burst with light and bathed the entire star system in red.
"The aura of an ancestral artifact!" Someone's voice rose in surprise.
The Great Galactic Era had begun.