NaNoWriMo 2011 – Day 10

Fairies : Mystica and Merlin

Chapter 10 : The Legend Is Real

Mystica sat down at the table. On the wooden block she used for a chair. Whisper stood in the middle of that able, right in front of her. He hooted to clear his throat, and then he spoke, telling Mystica all he knew about Merlin.

Merlin was a legend. A myth. A ghost from the past. A fire breathing dragon, gifted with black magic. He’d lived 10,000 years ago. Ruling the dragons for centuries. No dragon dared stand against Merlin. Of the dragons that had stood against him, nothing but bits and pieces of wings, and a few scales, were ever found.

It was Merlin that had purged the fairies from the Northern Forest. Pushing them all the way past the mountains, and the grey hills. To the southern plains where they lived now. It was Merlin that in the legends had nearly destroyed the fairies.

And her friend, Whisper the owl, was telling her that Merlin was not a legend. This is the story that Whisper shared with Mystica that day.

I told you that you had a guardian. That you were protected here, in the Northern Forest. That no predators of any kind come near this lake. Now I shall tell you who your guardian is, and why he is your guardian.

Princess Mystica, of the fairies of the south. Yes, I know who you are. And I know the white magic is very strong in you. I know too why you are here, in the forest. I know that your mother, Ivy has died. That she was killed by a bolt from a cross bow. That you did everything you could to save her. And that you feel as if you failed. And so, you have walked away from everything. To find yourself. To find the heart and soul of who you are.

The Northern Forest is a dangerous place for a lone fairy. The bears and the wolves would hunt you, if they felt they could. But they know not to. They know that they will be destroyed by someone far more dangerous than them. By someone that is the ultimate predator. By the black magic dragon that is Merlin.

Merlin, the same dragon that nearly destroyed the fairies. The same Merlin that ruled the dragons for centuries. The same Merlin that destroyed ever village in the forest. The same Merlin that one day vanished. And was never heard from again.

Merlin the dragon is still very much alive. It is Merlin himself that is your guardian here. It is Merlin that has waited 10,000 years for you to arrive.

Over 10,000 years ago, in a time long forgotten. A time known only in legends and stories. Merlin ruled this land. All the dragons did as he commanded. He was the most violent of all the dragons. And the most afraid. For you see, dragons become larger, and more violent when they are afraid. And Merlin was the largest dragon of all.

He’d grown to be so powerful, so strong, so violent, so large, because his fear drove him to deny his future. He sought to escape his own future. To deny what he was to become. And in doing so, he waged war on the fairies. With the full intention of destroying them all. So that his destiny could never come to pass.

He flew into the sky, night after night. Following the fairies as they fled to the south. Burning their caravans with his fire breath. Using his black magic crafts to send avalanches against the fairies. Crushing hundreds of them under mountain rocks. Sending the wolves after the fairies. Entire packs of wolves. Merlin’s magic turned the wolves and the fairies into enemies. And every night, the wolves hunted fairies. Relentlessly killing hundreds more.

In the south, beyond the grey hills, Merlin flew. Seeking any settlement of fairies. Any village. No matter how small it was. And when he found a village, Merlin burned it to the ground. With black magic fire. Fire that consumed everything. And left nothing at all behind. No bodies. No structures. Nothing.

The fairies knew that they were doomed. That their time had come. They kept fleeing to the south. In the desperate hope that they would find some way to save themselves. And always, Merlin hunted them.

One day, the fairies made a small camp. A few tents beneath the trees in a forest on the plains. Among these fairies was the last noble family of the fairies. King Anoton and Queen Ezmeralda. They had used their fairy magic, and their white magic to fight back against the relentless dragon Merlin. They had even tried to purge the fear from him using the cleansing flames of a white magic fire. Nothing that they did ever worked. At best, they only delayed the inevitable demise of the fairy people.

Queen Ezmeralda was with child. They were to have an heir. And that heir was to be born that night. In a small forest on the plains. Hidden from the sight of Merlin. For they knew that Merlin would destroy the king, and queen. And their newborn child. And everyone that was there, with Ezmeralda. Caring for her while she gave birth. And caring for the newborn child.

The child was a baby girl. The last princess of the fairies. When she was born, they handed her to Ezmeralda so that she could see the miracle of life that she had been blessed with. A baby girl. Kiing Anton named his daughter that night. She was named Eyela.

The same Eyela that rules the kingdom of fairies now. For Eyela is 10,000 years old too. And she will live a very long time yet. She has built a brand new kingdom for the fairies.

On that very night, Merlin found the place underneath the trees of the forest, when the party of the King and Queen were. And he flew into the trees. Landing on the ground. The fairies had shot their arrows at him. Endlessly. But all those arrows did was bounce off of Merlin’s armored scales. Merlin walked among them. Swinging his arms. His claws, as large as swords. Cleaving fairies in half. Cutting clean through trees. The fairies died. One by one. Merlin spoke, and his black magic set fire to the fairy warrior standing outside the tent of the king and queen. He spoke another word, and the tent was torn to shreds as it lifted off the ground. Revealing King Anton and Queen Ezmeralda. The king drew his sword, and leaped at Merlin.

Merlin’s teeth sank into King Anton. Killing him instantly. Merlin raised his head, looking to the sky, the king still impaled on his teeth. And Merlin swallowed him. Completely. Sword, clothing, shoes and all. Then he turned to face the queen. He breathed dragon fire. And the queen was burned alive. She never had the time to move. The remains of her body collapsing to the ground.

This was what Merlin wanted. The end of the royalty of the fairies. Soon, he knew, he would destroy them all.

That’s when he heard the baby Eyela start to cry. That’s when he stopped. He looked at the newborn child. He stood there. Watching as the child cried. Asking himself why he’d stopped. Why he hadn’t snuffed out her life. As he had the lives of the other fairies hiding in the trees.

He listened to the cries of baby Eyela. And in those cries, he heard the voice of loneliness. A cry of such pain. A cry that echoed in his black heart. A cry that brought the black magic that lived inside of him to life. A cry the black magic responded to. Merlin watched as the black magic formed a shield around that little fairy. A shield to keep the baby safe. To protect the child.

Merlin stepped back as he felt the black magic move inside of him. As he heard that magic say, “No more. Now it’s time to change.”

Merlin used his black magic to pick the baby up. Floating her in the air, as she rested on her back. He listened to the cries of the baby Eyela, as he took to the sky. Taking the newborn fairy with him.

Merlin flew. In a big circle. Hunting for a band of fairies. Any band would do. When he found a band, he stopped. Landing on the ground. Right before them. They shot their arrows at him. They hid from him. Behind trees, and rocks. Merlin did not attack. He did not kill them all. He didn’t kill a single one of them.

Instead, he used the black magic to float the baby Eyela across the ground to where several fairies simply stood there. Too shocked, and too afraid to move. Then he spoke. His voice sounding like a plate of metal being torn in half.

“I bring you the newborn daughter of the king and queen. They called her Eyela. Care for her.” Then Merlin turned. And he spoke once more. “Our war is now over.” He took to the sky. And flew to the north. Back to the grey hills, and the mountains beyond them. Back to the Northern Forest. And there, he disappeared.

The fairies that survived never knew what happened. All they knew is that for some reason that mystified them, Merlin hadn’t destroyed them all. He hadn’t wiped the fairies from existence. He’d let them live.

They settled on the southern plains, where they built a small village. There were less than 100 of them left. But they took care of the newborn baby girl. The one that Merlin had declared was the daughter of the king and queen. The one that Merlin had declared was named Eyela.

As Eyela had grown from a baby, to a child, to an adult, everyone could see that she had her mothers eyes and hair. And her fathers smile. And it became obvious to them when Eyela was still a child that she had the fairy magic of a princess. The magic of the daughter of the king and queen.

Eyela became the princess she was meant to be. Slowly building a new kingdom for the fairies in the Southern Plains. Merlin watching as she did. He never showed that he was there. Watching. He remained hidden. Not even the dragons could find him. It was as if he’d simply vanished. Never to be seen again.

But Merlin never died. He practiced his black magic arts. Slowly mastering them. Until he has become a fully developed black mage.

As his fears declined, his anger declined also. And Merlin’s size decreased. Until he looked more like a big lizard with wings. But he remains a full grown dragon. With a dragon’s speed and strength. With armored scales. His claws remain razor sharp. His teeth, although small now, remain as sharp as swords.

And every creature in the forest fears the dragon Merlin. The predators avoid him. As they avoid the things he has protected. The other dragons don’t even known that he exists. He’s been hidden from them, here, in the forest, for the past 10,000 years.

It is Merlin that protects you. He who has said he will protect your for now. While you recover from the loss of your mother. Once he has determine that you can stand on your own, he will withdraw his protection. And you will have to face the predators of the forest.

….

With those words, Whisper had reached the end of the words he wished to share with Mystica. The owl then spread his wings, and silently took to the air. Departing Mystica’s tree house. Leaving her on her own.

Mystica sat there for a time, as she realized she had very much to think about. And as she thought she found herself thinking that perhaps, after all this time, it was finally time for her to mourn the loss of her mother.

That it was at last time for Mystica to grieve.

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