Salidora, the Ivory City. They human eye cannot possibly view the span of the city in it’s entirety. It’s supreme size is dwarfed only by it’s beauty, a masterpiece of planning and teamwork that took hundreds of years to create. In the days of peace, the First, this city was one that all flocked to; one where every living creature held love for all; each other, every creation, whether by their hands or not. It’s geographical ingenuity only spread word of it’s unspeakable perfection to others by increasing rapidity. The measure of houses that stood with the glittering roads between them was without flaw; great statues of all things loved dotted the city and houses were made of a material that teared up the eyes of newcomers. Perfection itself, to this city, was a disastrous mistake.
A great wall surrounds it, a wall as thick as a man could run within twenty seconds, and inside are roads of white stone, houses and markets of the same colour yet parted by many beautiful items of vegetation and fields for the tilling. A pure lake stands in the centre; all needs were met. As the times flowed into each other, the city's inhabitants began to wonder; what lay outside the walls? What did they not know? Why was it that this place was all that they desired, when things of the unknown had stirred up similar feelings? And so began the Pilgrimages; times when exploration became the focus of this race, fast losing it's innocence. Realization was dawning that the perfection of their city did not carry to the unknowns. And this, in turn, incited exploration to new levels that would cause the Ivory City's downfall. The city itself began to wonder; then finally, it required armies, towers of watch, and tools of destruction. The lake began to dry, and water from elsewhere became commonplace. And so it was then that they learned of Balance. And all was well once again, for a time. However, the curiosity of old did not leave the minds of any entirely, and little by little, other villages appeared and grew, until Salidora stood as it's capital, and finest of all great cities. The Balance, wishes of the Forest that stood high above the ocean on the very center of the planet, decided that a test would determine what it had created. And so a people appeared out of the Mist, a strange collection of beings that had nothing but hate, malice, and will of dominion. The Balance selected seven beings to restore the wishes it had based it's existence upon. The seven beings alone, mortals as they were, would bring Balance once again. And one would recreate it entirely.
The city lay in ruins, figures dashing in between the burning and collapsing buildings in an attempt to save what was utterly destroyed. Fires blossomed everywhere, and cyclones created by some of the figures clashed violently against one another in a maelstrom that blew houses away in a massive cloud of ashes. "Get the children out of here! Evac -" The figure atop the belltower stopped and began to convulse on the spot, a spear shooting through his throat and back into the town. Screams of fear and rage were barely heard above the roar of fire that spanned the limits of the human eye. A city warrior raced up the side of the belltower and kicked several burning bricks out of the building itself, crushing the murderer. Whipping out a pair of swords, he raced to deflect a hail of arrows that were headed for the fleeing children; however, several made it's way through his defence. His mind cold with rage, he failed to notice the arrow that pierced his heart from behind. Eleven. The archer complimented himself on the latest kill, drawing another larger, longer arrow. This particular one was designed by the sorcerers of the organization for this task alone. After being fired, it would split into several lethal projectiles. These would cause havoc among the children, for each arrow was filled with a devestatingly lethal and deliberately slow-acting and excruciatingly painful poison. The surviving archers, numbering two hundred and fifty five asides from him, were all using the same design as he, for all had the same mission. All were perched in different strategical positions around the crumbled city, ready to finally complete their cruel assignment. Exterminate all young ones. Using the most efficient and deadly means possible.
This mission had been much harder than planned, for the people of the city seemed to hold the children in a rediculously high regard. Even the Elites were doing all they could to save them, yet they had failed. The overwhelming force of the attackers had seen to that.
These five children were all that was now left between accomplishing the mission of glory and a disgraceful death for failure. And only two wounded Elites had survived this long for their protection. The other warriors were too busy fending off the relentless wave of attackers to personally escort them to safety. The entire population of the city had given their lives to create a pathway through which the children could escape. Yet even the finest warriors of Saliadora could do nothing when being outnumbered several thousand to one. It was a miracle any of them were still alive at all, while maintaining a relatively clear path for the children to escape.
Snapping himself from the distraction of thought, the archer took careful aim, pointing the oversized arrow at the child in the middle of the fleeing pack that had somehow made it to outskirts of the city. He was slightly impressed with the amount of land the they had managed to cover while still holding on to their lives. So far they had made it through countless burning buildings and bodies, enemy projectiles, ambushes and brute attacks from enemies that had made it through the city’s final defence.
The archer grinned, his arrow poised straight at the shrinking figures as they dodged collapsing buildings and sprinted for the safety of the Ivory Gates. Many lives may have been spared if the people of the city had fled. But they instead had chosen to resist Him. It was a mistake only one had made twice. That one's remains were now scattered throughout the land as a warning to the rest. A flaming arrow whistled through the air, drawing every eye of the gory city. Grinning at a job well done, he fired. Two hundred and fifty-six arrows flew straight at the children, multiplying fourfold as they went. The child in the middle of the pack turned around and stopped only a few dozen yards from the pearl - white walls. The other four followed suit, stopping and staring, eyes wide in sudden realization. The Elites, following the stares of the children, copied their younger counterparts. They had failed. All hope of true Balance was lost. The archer chuckled as he squatted on one of the final remaining rooftops, certain that he was in for a good show. His eyes widened, however, as an impossibly agile figure interjected itself into the middle of the fleeing group. The figure sprang upwards and began a rapid spin just feet above the children, arms outstretched. Over a thousand arrows diverted from their path and spun around him in a deadly dance, racing straight back at their owners faster than they had been fired. "Thank you, my Lord," the tired Elite gasped, nursing a slash to the side, "without you, the Children would be gone." Lord Takoryo of Salidora nodded his head not only in confirmation, but as acknowledgement of the thousands who had lost their lives this cursed morning. He had seen them all fighting to protect those they had pledged their lives to, yet could not protect them from the hundreds of thousands of enemies that had breached the outer gates, unequaled size nonwithstanding. And although hundreds of thousands had died at his hands, the other half of the army had wreaked complete catastrophe upon the city. No baby, child, woman or man had been spared from the cruel poisons and assaults of the enemy. Although death was imminent, the citizens had always held their own lives as unimportant, their human desire to survive overridden by a sense of loyalty to the wishes of Balance. And it had broken Takoryo's heart to see such unequaled loyalty and love destroyed, to feel in his very heart the desires of his people, only to lead to.....nothing. The Children's names and faces had appeared in the water of the tiny lake that morn....the foretold existence of future Guardians tasked with maintaining....or in Takoryo's mind, reinstating, the Balance that eternity had created. These five children were the future keepers of peace, the reason that the city's population had loyally forfeited their lives. A distant rumble brought him back to the groans and frightened chatter of the Children and the burning wreckage that had only hours ago been a glorious, almost glowing city in slumber. "Lord Takoryo, what is your plan? The enemy is coming, and we are all that remains of.....of..." an Elite said, his eyes tearing up. The grip on his drawn sword tightened as he struggled to contain his emotion. "Garrett.....you know that I grieve for your loved ones as much as you, but now is not the time to become distracted with the memories I know run through your mind. But, Garrett, before you become consumed, you must fight. Find it in your heart to push aside those memories. To finish what we all started. It is what we all would -" A thunderous, white sound. Takoryo snapped out of speech and flung a hand forwards. The massive Ivory Gates swung open, allowing the eight of them to dash through before Takoryo slammed them back shut, clasping his hands together. The gates began to tremble rythmetically. "Garrett, Yun, I need you to take the children through the Caves. When you reach the other side, find a city, preferably one with little repute. The identity of the Children must never leave your lips, or theirs, or they are doomed. Understood?" "Yes, my Lord." both Elites replied, bowing. The Children were all wide-eyed with a deep fear that comes from the sights of things they will one day understand, yet cannot place in their minds, only able to store them in the memories of nightmares to come. The thunder of the approaching enemy did nothing to remove the ice that had covered and squeezed it's way into their chest and stomachs. Although none of them would ever dream of fleeing alone and leaving their surrounding siblings behind, some were wondering just how long they had to live. Takoryo looked to the frightened children and gave a long, tired sigh that came of sympathy and exasperation. [i]These children are having thoughts young ones their age should never even know about.[/i] "Whatever happens, my Children, do not even [i]think[/i] of trying your luck on your own. I will make this very clear. If you do not do exactly as your Masters say, you will be killed. Understood?" Takoryo stated, without a hint of irony. Five pairs of eyes grew even wider, and Takoryo wasn't sure whether he was seeing nods or trembling. What he had done was cruel. But it was also quite possibly the difference between life and death for them. This came from almost infinite experience. Takoryo's hands began to shake as the pounding on the gates grew louder and a splintering noise was heard. "Garrett....Yun....Children, it is time I wish you luck on your journeys, wherever they may lead you. I must be leaving, and perhaps sometime, somehow, we shall meet again. But now, you must run as fast as your legs can carry....actually, you two, use your brains...mine's a little preoccupied." the Guardian said, his knuckles white and trembling. The two Elites looked to one another and nodded, and Yun pointed seven fingers to the ground. A moment later, seven disks ripped out of the dimly-glowed cobblestone road leading to the city. The children, somewhat familiar with these natural devices, all hastened onto one each, lying with their bellies and legs resting on the disk, hands gripping the edges in front and eyes wide as they looked frantically around. "Garrett. Yun." "Yes, my Lord." "Guide them to the caves and seal the entrance. Travel to the other side and you shall be safe, if you remember to heed my words." "Yes, milord." "Milord?" "Yun." "Are you going to use....that...." "Yes, Yun. I am. I have a feeling I'll have to." "Then....then goodbye, my Lord. You were...I will...." The elite removed his canine-inspired steel helm, and took out a vial from his green tunic. His loose-fitting pants fluttered in the cold morning-eve wind as he handed it to Takoryo. The white eye on his tunic back, insignia of his devotion to the Balance, flashed once then dimmed to normal state. Takoryo's old, mottled hand pushed it aside. "No, Yun.....my son, you must fly from here, as far as you can. There is nothing that can be done that differs from what I've told you. This, you must let the children use shall they receive any injury." Takoryo's knuckles began to bleed; they were shaking furiously now. "Now flee. Wear the uniforms of Elites no longer than you have to, for you have no home now; least of all, here. Word of Salidora's destruction will spread far, and fast; think of a way to convince those you encounter that you are not of our descent. Children.....you are loved, and always shall be. Remember this, for your path shall be the hardest." In one movement, the stones carrying the Elites and Children shot into the morning; Takoryo would never be seen again. "I'm sorry to have done this, Yun.....but I pray that you will live to understand."
How does this look? It’s my first real attempt at fanfic but it turned out NOT to be fanfiction in the end. It’s my own work, but how’s it shaping out?? (hint - next is Takoryo’s battle, where he’s forced to go all-out on someone; along with the children’s journey)