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Ancient Prophecy IV: Reunited
by Vipers

This story was split into 7 parts. Jump to any of the segments from here:
1|2|3|4|5|6|7
Note: This story was originally submitted as one long story
and it was only broken into 7 parts for faster page loading.


That's it! Her slavery had failed to make her into a submissive whore. She had endured it well, and she had come out stronger. She couldn't imagine what she had become if she learnt about sex the easy way, just like all those whores. Deep inside, she felt proud of her strength and dignity.

For all these years she had hated her father for making her endure all the pains of her past. But now she had realized how she had been enslaved by her hatred. She had seen how she had tried to run away from reality. She had known how much she had learnt from her past. Slowly, her heart, along with her hatred, melted.

She looked into the darkness. "Thank you... father... I... I thank you..."

"For what, Maya? I thought you hate me with all your heart."

"You have opened my eyes. I used to hate my past. You have made me realized how my past had taught me many things. I... I'm sorry... For many years I've hated you. My destiny with you has served me well. It has served me, and it will not control me, ever."

Another image appeared from the darkness in front of her, and she quickly recognized him as her late father... the man who had become her worst nightmare... the man who had been her symbol of disgrace... the man who had freed her from the prison of her past...

"Father... I... I..."

That smiling face... that loving gaze... was overwhelming. Tears of joy fell from her eyes. She realized how much she missed him. She realized how much she loved him. The hatred from her past had kept those feeling from arising.

"Father... I love you... Are we going to be together once again...?"

"Oh my god..."

The two companions had arrived in the lava pool. The huge cave was fortified by rocky walls covered by precious gemstones. On the center of the room was a large lava pit. The lava beneath was bubbling violently, indicating that the mountain was actually still active inside. At the center of the lake was a small island. A stone altar stood on the island. Numerous pieces of stone stood circling the altar.

"Atrus! Look!"

Anna pointed at the island next to the altar. It looked like another standing stone, but after looking at it for a while, Atrus identified it as a sitting man. He sat near the lava pool, unmoved. A long stick was in his grasp.

"I cannot believe there's a man inside the Mystic Mountain..."

"I can't either... Come on, we have to cross the pool."

The island was isolated from the rest of the cave by the lava pit. The only mean of crossing was the rows of raised rock platforms from the cave side to the island. Beneath the rocks, however, was the endless journey toward the center of the planet, and both of them knew it wouldn't be entertaining. Moreover, the pit also produced bursts of flame constantly that could almost reach the ceiling.

"Even if I can cast it, my magic barrier won't protect you from the lava..." Anna warned.

Atrus carefully walked near the pit. The heat was intense, making both of them sweat excessively. The nearest platform was close, but he wanted to make sure it was strong enough to support his weight. He carefully stepped on it and confirmed that it was indeed firm. He then put the other foot on and stood on it. To his dismay, the rock shook a little. Far beneath him was the fierce bubbling lava. If he fell down, he would be incinerated instantly.

He tried to recall all the balance training he had received from his father. When one's heart was calm, his body would obey him to the fullest. When soul was at peace, the coordination would reach perfection. He took a deep breath, tried to forget about the hell beneath, and looked at the path before him.

He took another step, then another one, then another one. His confidence grew in every successive step he made. Soon he found himself standing halfway through the lava pit. The flare erupted angrily beneath his feet, but he stood firmly on two platforms. He looked back at Anna.

"Come! You can do it!"

"Yeah... Easy for you to say..." She mocked him.

"Do you prefer staying with those cute elementals until the end of time?"

"No! But being boiled in the cauldron below won't be fun..."

She had her reason to fear. He thought for a while, then came up with a brilliant idea.

"Are you saying that you're SCARED?!!!"

"NO!!! I'm just... just..."

"You know what, Anna... You're starting to... disappoint me..."

"You...! You'll pay for mocking me!"

"COWARD!!!"

"BONEHEAD!!!"

"EGGHEAD!!!"

"DOLT!!!"

"CHICKEN!!! CLUCK... CLUCK... CLUCK..."

"ARRGH!!! FINE!!!"

She took one careful step on the nearest platform. The rock held her weight firmly. Her body, however, shivered from a terrible fear. She tried to regain her balance, then dared herself to take another bold step. Her breathing was heavy, and sweat covered her completely. After the third step, when she thought she couldn't make it, she heard him again.

"Is that all you can do?! Ah come on! Even my thirteen-year-old cousin can do better!"

"NO, HE CAN'T!!!"

"True. But after seeing you, I'm quite sure. Moreover, it's SHE! That's right... a GIRL..."

"ATRUS!!! I'LL MAKE YOU PAY!!!"

She took another step, then another one, supported solely by her anger. Once she was near to him, however, her mind was fixed to 'revenge'. She didn't realize the slight elevation change of the next platform. When she did, it was too late. Her left foot was tripped, and she stumbled forward.

"ANNA!!! YOUR HAND!!!"

Before her eyes was the blazing lava pit, waiting to turn her body into ashes. She cried at the top of her voice, dreaded at the sight. Suddenly she felt a pair of strong arms grabbed her extended right arm and swung her back up.

Atrus, who stood firmly between two rocks, caught her arm in time, and was swinging her body. The island was not too far away, but he only had one shot. He threw her body backwards as far as he could, used the gravity to make a stronger counter-swing toward the island, and let her go. She screamed as her body was propelled in the air. He made it! Anna landed on the island, although the landing wasn't nice.

His action, however, was done by sacrificing his own balance. The momentum made his left leg slip off from the rock platform. His right leg followed shortly, but his right arm made a majestic safe by holding the platform where his right foot had used to be. He was hanging on one arm on the rock platform, and beneath him was the dreaded lava pool, ready to swallow his next prey.

"ATRUS!!!"

Anna was near the pit, looking at him in terror. She had forgotten about the pain in her ass during the landing. She had forgotten all the insults he had made.

"Atrus... forget about what I said... Just... just don't die...!"

She was right. He could feel his arm was getting weary. His death was at hand. It was only a grasp away, and then everything would be over. But he didn't want to die. If he died, Maya's hope of survival would be lost. He calmed down and let the feeling flow through him.

And the flame around his body was ignited. The hidden power inside his body was once again available for him to use. The sore pain in his right arm gave in and he could feel the power returning. Slowly he lifted his body back to the platform. Soon, he secured his position on the rocks again.

With his new power, his sense was greatly enhanced, making his work much easier now. He took another step, then another one, then another one. He made his way across the lava pit in no time. The blaze across his body vanished as he calmed down.

He was greeted immediately by the frightened Anna. She snuggled him tightly; the hint of fear was still in her voice.

"Thank god, Atrus... you're okay... Don't do that again...!"

He embraced her and comforted her shivering body. "It's okay. I don't have a cousin, anyway." He chuckled. "Let's check our friend here."

They walked slowly toward the figure. It was a figure of an old man with a long beard. His long robe confirmed him as a mage. He snuggled his long magical rod between his arms. But one important detail was quite terrifying. The man had been mummified by the volcanic dust. His skin was completely dark and rigid, but his original shape was kept. His eyes stared blankly to the far wall.

Suddenly Anna tugged his arm and pointed at the altar. On the altar was a book. It had beautiful sculptures on the cover, but the astonishing thing was that the book was actually floating.

"I... I can't believe it... the long lost Book of Elements..."

"What?"

Anna looked at him, puzzled. "Don't you know? The Book of Elements was the ultimate dream for every mage in the realm! You can master many elemental spells by only learning ONE book!"

"No... I haven't heard..."

"Nobody has heard about it for years. It belonged to the Order of Magi, far north of Aragon. The place was destroyed during the Great Magi Wars. The book was lost, and now it has been found..."

He could remember clearly how the Great Magi Wars had happened nine years ago. The magi of the realm had refused to swear allegiance to any of the kingdoms in the land. Both Elven and Human kingdoms had claimed possession of the group, since the magi clan had members from all races. The clan, however, had decided to take the subversive way and rebelled against both rulers. They had been driven away, but the war had unnecessarily claimed many lives.

Anna picked the book up from the altar, looked at it in awe, then put it inside her backpack. He then glanced back to Atrus. "My theory is that this unfortunate mage is a fugitive from the raid. He took the book before the whole place was burned, and hid the book here. He created force fields to dampen magic inside the caves and put elemental guardians to ward off the soldiers who came for him. However, the force fields also hampered his own magic, and he was trapped here, forever..."

Atrus nodded at her theory, but his attention turned to the small weeds beneath the altar. The Black Orchid! Anna seemed to notice it as well. She retrieved the clay container from her backpack, put a leather glove on, and carefully picked some of the flowers up. Nobody, not even Falagor, wanted to play around with the strongest poison in the realm. She closed the container with several bands of rope.

"Okay, I got it! Now... the talisman."

Atrus took the talisman out. The silver medallion was not very impressive, but it contained a very strong magic inside.

"Do you think this will work inside the force fields?" he asked.

"Let's hope your master is strong enough to be called the supreme wizard of the realm..."

He eased his mind, trying to invoke the power of the talisman. "Master... we're ready."

The talisman shone brightly and the vision around them grew dim. It was soon replaced by the friendly-looking nature. The hot air was replaced by cool air and light wind. The roar of the lava was replaced by soft sound of birds chirping from a far. Behind them, the old cottage stood where Falagor was waiting. The talisman had worked!

"Atrus... the sun!"

The sun was rising! They had been fighting inside the mountain for the entire night! And Maya's life was at stake!

"Anna! Get back to the cottage now! I'll be right behind!"

Anna required no second command, and quickly ran toward the cottage. Atrus took a last glance toward the mountain before him. There were many things he didn't understand. Why would a fugitive of both Humans and Elven kingdoms built his hiding place near both nations' border? Why had the mage be so careless in making his defenses that had finally claimed his own life? Didn't all magi know everything about their spells, including the effects and consequences?

But the questions would remain... kept secret beneath the surface of the Mystic Mountain...

"Father... Why are you here?" Maya finally asked.

Her father before him smiled. "I'm here to bring you home. At last we're together."

He lifted his hands, and before her came another image. A beautiful garden replaced the darkness around her. The vast carpet of thin green grass covered the landscape. The soft breeze of wind played her ponytail. Songs of birds could be heard from afar. Wonderful flowers from many kinds were blossoming, spreading their fragrant perfumes.

"Father... is... is this paradise...?"

His father nodded. "Your loyalty to your master is unwavering. Lord Guardian has acknowledge your kindness and has granted you the best." He smiled warmly. "You belong here."

"Then... then I'm dead already..." She said nervously. "Master Atrus... Mistress Anna... I... I've left them..."

"They don't belong here, Maya. Their time has not come." Her father answered. "You don't have to feel pain anymore. You don't have to suffer in the ruthless world anymore. You're free."

"No more pain... no more suffering..." She repeated.

"That's right." He gestured at the vast landscape around them. "All these glory of nature... they are all yours. The choice is all yours."

"My choice..."

"Yes... You have to choose wisely, Maya..."

Maya's body shook violently again, startling both Atrus and Anna to death. Falagor lay her quivering body back to bed and checked her condition, although he knew it wouldn't help much.

The poison had been applied and was now working; both fighting the original venom and destroying her already battered body. Her soul was getting weaker and weaker. Atrus sat quietly on the bed beside her body. Anna sat next to him, sobbing. Falagor sat on the other side of the bed.

Maya had been shuddering violently for nearly three hours. In each passing moment, her soul was getting farther and farther from Falagor's reach. Atrus had started to blame himself for causing her to suffer more, but now there was nothing he could do.

"Master... is she... is she...?"

"I'm sorry, my apprentice... I can't reach her... All we can do is pray..."

"Lord Guardian... please don't let her die..." Anna pleaded.

 

"I'm sorry, father... I have to fail you." Maya finally answered.

"What for?" His father asked with puzzled look.

"I cannot accept your call to paradise." She said. "I don't want to die."

"But your role in the world is over, Maya. This is your place."

She looked at her father with determination. "You taught me a lot about deciding my own destiny. You taught me that the choice is in my hand. Deep inside, I know this is not my destiny."

"What do you mean, Maya?"

"My task is not completed yet. I still have to go with Master Atrus and Mistress Anna. I still have to look for the Champion of the Guardian. I still have to save the people of Aragon from the Army of Darkness. I promised Master Atrus that I will follow him forever."

"But that's their task now. You're finished, Maya, finished."

"No, father!" She answered. "I will go with them. I will help them in their

journey. THAT is my destiny. I'm sorry I have to fail you, but deep inside I know that I have made the right choice."

(next)

This story was split into 7 parts. Jump to any of the segments from here:
1|2|3|4|5|6|7
Note: This story was originally submitted as one long story
and it was only broken into 7 parts for faster page loading.

Another top quality story by Vipers.

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