On a front seat, twenty something meters from the stage, an elderly female teacher stood up respectfully. “Young Lord, please forgive this old grandma, but what you said just now is unheard of”. The old teacher referred to herself as “Grandma” to justify her comment and to not offend the monstrous man before her.
“Young Lord, fostering the younger generation has always been the responsibility of us, the older generation. And when the day comes, when they are a step away from attaining a body and soul enlightenment, it is the Supreme Rulers’ blessing which direct them on their path of life…” Another teacher tried to reason. Listening to him, other teachers rose from their seats, nodding and sharing the same opinion.
For a short second the expression on Mortimer Dauch’s face showed disdain. He closed his eyes and opened them again with a smile. “Please take your seats”. He gestured courteously.
The teachers, which most were older or at the same age as Mortimer, felt something inside them, at the lower dantian. If not their minds, then their cores were the ones which gave recognition to Mortimer’s authority over them, and right after, they could feel it with all of their body and soul as well, how the demeanor of the young man on stage suddenly turned noble and imposing.
“It is very true”, Mortimer started saying and lowered his head. “Each year a new generation learns up close the history of our kingdom. They then receive a sentence or two of the Martial path from the Supreme Rulers and finally try their best to earn a proper Earth’s Core and cultivate it according to how they interpreted those sentences”. Mortimer described the matter and abridged it so that the students could understand what their teachers fuss about.
It was not a laughing matter to him either, but in recent years he began to see it as an issue that cramped the growth of the Martial path in humanity’s territory, compared to the amount of advanced experts in the beast’s territory. Since birth he followed his father’s teaching and those of the other two Supreme Rulers and at this point in his life he gained enough insight and encountered a new threshold in his training that allowed him to construct a new passageway that he believed, will raise in one level the potential of every generation that will decided to follow the Martial path.
“To restore the calm of the respected elders, I will let you in on this…” With a wave of his hand a long black hair pin appeared between his fingers like a chopstick. The hair pin had four golden decorations of a quill pen, an arm, an eye and a circle.
“The emissary’s token!” The teachers and the Historic Center’s attendants exclaimed in one breath.
The emissary’s token was far more than a beautiful hair pin; it bore the insignia of Supreme Ruler Ariel Dauch. It was given to every emissary for two reasons and none was for identification process. The first reason was negligible, that is for customary purposes. The second reason, on the other hand, was to symbolize the trust between the Supreme Ruler and his emissary. When revealing the emissary’s token, others must consider the presence and words of its bearer to be equal to the Supreme Ruler’s with no complaint.
Possessing it now did not just mean that Mortimer indeed was sent by Supreme Ruler Ariel, but also that he got his approval to inherit his duty.
Mortimer waved his hand again and the hair pin disappeared. He had expressionless face now that everyone recognized his official position.
“Dear sons and daughters of our esteemed kingdom”, it was about time for Mortimer to at last voice what he came here with in his heart and from this point on he will not permit any more interferences. “From a young age we are thought that a person is valued by his level of mastery over his or her Earth’s Core. The higher the rank of a Mist User, the more his or her status grows.
”In the distant past, pre New Earth, when human beings lived above the ground, the value of individual could never surpass that of the many. Our physical capabilities were frail and unable to evolve. We were bound by a very small portion of earthly possession and understanding.
“More than five thousand years later, after much turbulence and internal and external struggles we were able to acquire a new way of life with many paths to choose from. Out of them, the path that enabled us to do what we could not in the past, physically and spiritually, more than any other path, was the Martial path”.
Mortimer scanned the eyes and attention of every boy and girl in the crowd of thousands. In two steps he covered tens of meters from one side of the hall to the other, back and forward. In a second step he was back on the stage. The entire process took no more than a second, so to the eyes of the coreless children it only seemed as if they lost concentration and spaced out.
Mortimer paused, something in the atmosphere around him changed to distant and longing. He glanced at the crowed and his eyes gave the impression that they were looking past them. “The Martial path, the path of Evolution, the path of Immortality, the path of Gods… To describe the possibilities at the end of this path… None in our Kingdom Earth, even all of New Earth, can dare to try.
”So then, what can we do to proceed on this path that can strengthen the body and enlighten the soul far beyond what we ever dreamed of and so far we have accomplished? In our world beneath the earth there is no tunnel leading to that answer”. Mortimer face became rigid after that declaration. “To realize the Martial path beyond our current achievements it is due time for a certain secret to be finally revealed”.
“What the Young Lord is talking about?”
“This is taking way too long than usual…”
Many of the teachers and Historic Center’s attendants wondered what is going on inside Mortimer Dauch’s head. In past ceremonies each of the emissaries shared, at most, five sentences. Mortimer, in comparison, did not even seem that he got to his point.
“The Supreme Rulers’ whereabouts during the year 4950 until the end of the Dark Century”. As the grownups in the crowed became conscious of what was said just now, Mortimer raised a hand and continued louder. “That period in time which never has been revealed to the public is here and now gonna be summarize, therefore please listen.
“After the establishment of Kingdom Earth the Supreme Rulers realized the limitations of their environment and as a result their training was impeded in a juncture they could not overcome on their own. To reach a breakthrough one solution was venturing into the beast’s territory and facing the numerous experts they believed were there. Regrettably, back then the relationship between the beasts and Kingdom Earth was just founded and so still unstable. With the recommendation of one of the beasts’ leaders that was in contact with the Supreme Rulers, they decided to spare the chance of damaging this new relationship by what could be interpreted as a provocative show of strength.
“The Supreme Rulers secluded themselves, pondering what to do. After indeterminate time, they have raised and agreed to the second solution. Go back to the world above the earth.
“As they predicted, he world we, human beings, lived in the past as evolved beyond what we could ever imagine. In that world the three supreme human beings learned the truth of the Martial path. There they deciphered the Earth’s Core secrets to a degree where their accomplishments, thus far, have been greatly hollow. Beneath the legendary blue sky they encountered beings of incomprehensible might that in front of they could only cower-“
“Young Lord, this is blasphemy!” A teacher stood up and cautioned, almost threateningly. Other teachers selected to also make a stand and got on their feet. This one was their Young Lord, but among them were their students. If Mortimer were to carry on and dare to undermine the Supreme Rulers’ in the slightest of forms, he will taint the young minds of little than ten years old children!
“As I was saying…” Mortimer tone changed from passionate to stern in the teachers’ ears alone. A force none of them could fathom penetrated their bodies and rocked the internals till their legs gave in and they fell, leaning backwards, to the seats.
“A world we can no longer treat as if it does not exists. For the sake of the Martial path, for the forging of the body and the enlightenment of the soul, I, Mortimer Dauch, will tell you this, dear sons and daughters of our esteemed kingdom. Dare you challenge the Martial path, do so with Peral determination! Gain your Earth’s Cores and strive for them to one day flourish under the blue sky!” Mortimer roared.
Unexpected! Startling! Bewildering!
Thousands of coreless children felt the words of Mortimer, an advanced Mist User on the Martial path, resonating through their bodies.
“Hereby I vow! In two months, after the Half Year celebrations, I, Mortimer Dauch, will follow the Supreme Rulers’ steps and venture to the world outside of New Earth and when I’ll return I’ll use my new found teachings to build my own school of the Martial path and with its strength bring our kind back to the world our ancestors once lived in!”
“Mortimer! Mortimer! Mortimer!”
There was not one child that did not applaud.
Above the earth and beneath the blue skies? Out of the world that confined every human for the last five thousand years? New teaching of the ultimate path, the Marital path? These were ambitious nine years old children and this was their last year in a pre Core school. Knowing their history and the different possibilities they will encounter in their near future and have to choose from was a given at this age. Hearing the oath by their Supreme Ruler’s blood and feeling his certainty they all desired to be part of it.
Even the hearts of the teachers were swept without their knowledge. The revelation of the Supreme Rulers’ whereabouts during the darkest time of the kingdom’s history was groundbreaking as it is, and there was no chance for a noble Mist User such as Mortimer Dauch to lie. Even more so, he now gave his word to go above the earth, come back and spread his knowledge, the first piece of knowledge of their previews world in more than five thousand years. If there was a reason for Supreme Ruler Ariel to pass on his duty to his ninth son, no one doubted its unexplained circumstances anymore!
Then and there, the closing part of the field trip has ended.
Cave twenty five.
At the school’s gates parents waited to pick up their tired children. A lot of parents were excited of their children’s third grade annual field trip, the time when they will receive their lord and ruler’s blessing, so many moms and dads came together to pick up their children.
“Zax, you are coming with us”. Serah’s dad rubbed Zax’s head and pulled him over to join them.
“Your parents called us. They said that they are stuck at work and won’t be able to pick you up, honey”. Serah’s mom grabbed Zax’s hand and they began to walk back home.
Although Zax knew that his parents will not come, when he got off the bus, seeing all of his classmates’ parents, a small hope in his heart to not be left alone made him believe that maybe they will be able to make it.
That hope was shattered when Troel, Serah’s dad, approached him. Luckily for Zax’s, his soul was stronger than that of the average nine years old and because of this he was also a bit more mature, enough to understand his parents, to know whose fault it was that they had to work late today and to obey Serah’s parents – plus, Jinka ,Serah’s mom, was a sous chef in a restaurant in the neighboring cave, so a delicious dinner was a sort of compensation.
Sharing what they learned in the trip, Troel and Jinka nodded and listened to the two kids right until the part that mentioned Mortimer Dauch.
“Both of you must have heard wrong…” Jinka said in a straight face. Are these children aware of what they are saying? She asked herself.
“No, mom, it’s the truth”.
“Aunty, even the teachers heard! Ask them if you don’t believe us”. Zax and Serah got offended by Troel’s and Jinka’s disbelief in their words.
“That’s enough”. Troel snapped and looked at his wife. Both of them were confused and a bit worry. Zax and Serah were good and honest children. One was the son of their friends and the other their own daughter. But the things they repeated and claimed that were the words of Supreme Ruler Ariel’s ninth son were too absurd and exaggerated!
“You two had a long day. For now, let’s stop discussing about the trip and first get home to eat dinner. I and Jinka were waiting you for more than an hour and we are also hungry so let’s step on it”. Troel and Jinka silently agreed, if anything unorthodox has really happened on the trip they will call Mr. Ogler the moment they will get home and clear it up with him. Besides, contrary to Zax, Serah had dark circles under her eyes, like others kids they noticed. The school and the parents emphasized the importance of this annual trip… Perhaps it was too stressful for a group of nine year olds after all?
The Lova household, Serah’s house.
“Go wash your hands and watch the living room’s screen until dinner is ready”. Jinka told Zax and Serah. “Honey…” Troel picked up the receiver of the house Caller and began to dial as his wife kept a constant eye contact with him, waiting for him to assure her that whatever the two children thought they have heard was just a misunderstanding.
Getting a short intervals ringing, the Caller on the other side of Mr. Ogler was constantly busy. Troel hanged up and tried to call again several times to no avail.
“Mom, come see”. Serah called from the living room. “Quick before it’s over! You too, dad!”
“Sweetheart, daddy on the phone”. Troel’s ear was stuck to the receiver, only paying half of his attention to Serah.
“Troel…” Suddenly Jinka called him, using that serious tone of her that is rarely heard.
Troel hanged up immediately and went to the living room, where his wife’s and the two children’s eyes were fixed on the Screen and the volume was high.
The announcement was broadcast repeatedly on all the channels. A middle age man with the emissary’s token pinned to his black robe, standing before a crowd of reporters and a picture of none other than Mortimer Dauch on the upper left side of the Screen.
“On July second, year 5784, an expedition group led by Supreme Ruler Ariel Dauch’s ninth son, Mortimer Dauch…” The announcer relayed the entire revelation of the Supreme Rulers’ whereabouts and Mortimer’s vow that just a few hours ago the entire class of third grade of El-Eden received in their annual field trip, to the whole of Kingdom Earth.
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