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D.T - The Frigid Prince: Chapter 5

A cold chill is rising...

The Frigid Prince: Chapter 5

As the others rushed to aid their friend Enaguille began zapping their feet with his magic; encasing them up to the ankle with an ice bracer. They struggled to break their feet free but couldn't. Methais turned to Enaguille and shouted, "What the hell man? Igor is in there he needs our help!"

"The only sound that travels in or out of that darkness is what the tower wants," Enaguille said. "We made our way out by following the sounds it made, now it wants us to follow them back in; only this time I don't think it will lead us out again. Igor is fine; I don't believe that was him at all, only a replica noise of him."

Still struggling to break the ice around his feet Methais asked, "Yea and how do you know that are you an expert all of a sudden? We don't know what's in there and-"

"And even if we did what would it matter?" Enaguille shouted back interrupting him. "We can't see in there to fight whatever it is that may or may not even be in there. We'd sooner be fighting ourselves then what isn't in there at all. And if that were Igor, by the sound of that scream he'd be dead. But you're right maybe he does need help..."

He then walked over to the edge of the darkness and began to craft a thin wall of ice that grew to his height then stretched out into the dark. While he concentrated in silence the others started making cracks in their icy bracers: they would be free soon.

When Enaguille finished, Curtis broke free of his ice bracers and ran for the dark, only to be captured again by a new set; stronger than the ones before. He shouted in frustration and turned to Enaguille, "You have no right to do this!"

Enaguille walked up to him and stared him down with his luminous sapphire eyes. Grabbing him by the neck with his free hand, he said, "In this place no one has any rights. It's what you can or cannot do." He let him go and addressed all of them now. "And if Igor isn't back by the time you have broken free from my icy bracers then I'm moving on: with or without you.

"And I like you guy's I do. But I can't help you if you constantly run head first into danger."

As all their eyes were on Enaguille, they didn't see Igor frantically emerging from the dark. Only after he shouted joyfully, "Oh thank all the gods I'm out of there!" Did they notice him. His nose was crooked and dripping blood, but he was smiling all the same.

Enaguille pounded his fists together and the ice he formed shattered harmlessly into tiny pieces. The others then gathered around Igor to ask him what happened and if he was alright. Methais had fixed his nose before he began.

"I'm fine now but I tell you being in there was beyond eerie; my goosebumps have goosebumps!" He wiped the blood from his nose before continuing. "I grew hair on my head and it fell out that’s how scary that place was."

"We heard you screaming in there man what was that about?" Yadriel asked.

Igor looked away embarrassed, his cheeks flushed red, "I mean I shouted for everyone in there, but I couldn't even hear my own voice only those damn wolves. I started following them like Enaguille said but they suddenly stopped and I was lost. I panicked and started running around; I wouldn't have found my way out if not running face first into that ice wall.

"I figured it was Enaguille's and I followed it out of the dark." He looked over to Enaguille, who was standing impatiently at the stairs waiting for them, and smiled at him waving.

Enaguille gave a small wave back, even grinned, and said, "Alright can we move on now? I don't like this floor any more than you guys do." Without waiting for an answer, he turned and began climbing the stairs.

Methais caught up to Enaguille on the stairs while the others talked among themselves. "You weren't really going to leave us behind there?" Methais asked.

Enaguille didn't answer.

The awkward silence carried on for a while as they climbed the stairs until Methais said, "Your ice wall is still up."

"I know," Enaguille said.

"Plan to lead everyone through there safely?"

"My father is still climbing..."

"So, he's a smart man he can figure it out."

"Perhaps, but the rules changed on that floor very fast. I think you need magic to compete with magic in this place. Hopefully, after he sees how he can't make it without that edge then he will turn around; and go home."

"If he's anything like you, something that small won't stop him."

Enaguille returned to his silent demeanor after that.

Coming out into the mountainous like floor, where it felt like being outside again, was an enormous spirit lifter for all of them. The smell of fresh air, the pseudo sunshine on their faces, even Enaguille was a bit more cheery.

"Now this is more like it," Yadriel said suddenly appearing next to Enaguille. "We need more floors like this and hey wait has your skin always been that blue?"

Enaguille glanced at Yadriel puzzled and then looked down at his skin. Indeed, it was a light shade of blue now before it was just very pale and white. "No, I think my magic is changing my appearance too."

Yadriel grabbed his wrist and pulled back right away. "It's ice cold man. That’s freaky... well see ya." He then vanished into thin air.

"Right and I'm the freaky one," Enaguille retorted.

He went and found the others to regroup after that. They were scattered around a bit but kept close enough together to still see each other or hear if they shouted. As Igor was the closest one around, Enaguille talked to him.

"Yadriel just teleported away," Enaguille said.

Igor scoffed and said, "Yea he does that, dammed fool has been teleporting into trouble as much as he has out of it."

Enaguille grinned, "I believe it. Anyway listen... sorry about almost abandoning you on that dark floor."

Igor looked Enaguille in the eyes, "Abandoning me? You saved me in there! If anything I should be thanking you, I just didn't know how, so I didn't say anything for all this time really."

They said nothing for a time and walked along in silence. "I think both of us were really, just trying to avoid this awkward silence," Enaguille said.

Igor chuckled, and Enaguille joined.

Methais and Curtis soon converged with them and Curtis asked, "Hey where has Yadriel vanished off to now?"

Enaguille shrugged his shoulders and said, "I don't know, this floor is rather enormous."

"Maybe we should shout for him, our echoes would carry into his ears right?"

"Yea his and anyone else’s who is here. Still this place is too big for us to look for him together I think we should split-"

"Guys we have a serious problem," Yadriel said appearing in front of them all and interrupting Enaguille. He was holding his left arm tightly, but Enaguille could still see the maroon blood oozing out of an unknown wound.

"What happened to your arm?" Methais asked taking notice of the blood as well.

Yadriel just shook his head and said, "nah man this is nothing but-"

"But I need to take a look at it so hold off on your story for a second." Enaguille said interrupting him and walking over to raise his injured arm up.

Yadriel flinched, "Hey man easy with that."

"Suck it up." He then moved his hand away from the wound that he was tightly clutching and tore the sleeve off his shirt. From his shoulder to bicep was a large gash that kept oozing blood. Enaguille quickly tore the arm sleeve up more and grabbed Yadiel’s arm to wrap the wound.

Yadriel flinched again and said, "Yo man your hands are even colder than before, stings worse than this!"

"Again suck it up," Enaguille said as he wrapped the wound off. "This will do to stop the bleeding for now but we will need something cleaner later on... and some fresh water to clean it out."

Yadriel scoffed and said, "Hah I survived worse than this."

Enaguille gave him a look of doubt and Igor confirmed, "Yea he has actually."

Enaguille sighed and stepped back giving him some room to breathe and tell his story.

"Alright so there I was, sightseeing and stuff right? Enjoying the view and everything, then I teleport to this one spot and Bam! Big ugly skeletal demon fucker is there with like these scythe hands and attacks me; and I tell you it was ugly. Gave me this nasty wound here too. So I got the hell out of there and teleported up higher and see' a whole fucking bunch of them like a small army or some shit. That's when I got the-"

Enaguille suddenly grabbed Yadriel by the collar of his shirt and pulled him aside, hurling his lance in the process.

Yadriel got up enraged at Enaguille until he saw the look of fear on the others and how they all stared past him. He turned around to see a tall grey skeletal monster with scythe like hands frozen in place; and Enaguille’s ice lance sticking out of its chest.

Yadriel swallowed the lump in his throat and said, "Yeah that's the one, er one of them at least."

"You weren't kidding that things an ugly ass monster," Curtis said.

"More like a nightmare," Igor remarked.

"These things are stealthy and fearsome," Enaguille said walking over to it and grabbing his ice lance. "How many did you say you saw again?" He pulled the lance out.

"A small army of them," Yadriel said.

Before Enaguille could turn to ask him where the thin sheet of ice coating the monster shattered and it swung its arm at him. Enaguille raised his lance in defense, blocking the swing. But the raw strength of the demon was too much and Enaguille was violently hurled like a ragdoll; smashing into one of the nearby boulders.

The demon turned its sights on the other now and Yadriel suddenly teleported behind it. He kneeled down and wrapped his good arm around its leg and the two suddenly vanished.

Seconds later, as they were wondering where Yadriel took it, Yadriel appeared in front of them landing hard on his knees. Before they could ask what happened, the demon fell from above and landed in front of them with an earth shaking thud. The ground had cracked all around as the demon was buried half a foot or so into the rocky ground; it was a hard fall.

Yadriel got up and shouted at it, "Yea fuck you! All that stress you gave me before I don't even give a shit now!"

He walked over to the demon and put a foot on it triumphantly. Moments later a low growl rumbled from the ground and Yadriel started backing up. As the demon slowly raised itself back up to its feet, he teleported to behind his friends and said, "Alright guy's I'm about ready to call it here and turn tail and run."

"Agreed."

"Agreed," Curtis and Methais said at the same time.

As they turned to flee, Igor said, "Wait what about Enaguille?"

"I'll grab him and get us the fuck out of here," Yadriel said.

He then vanished and returned a couple seconds later with Enaguille.

"Enaguille I think this is where we should stop our journey and turn back," Methais said. "We can't face these things."

"I'm not done yet!" Enaguille shouted at him.

He walked forward to the demon briskly. The others looked at each other not sure what to do. As the demon had finished rising to its feet and shaking off whatever damage the fall had done, Enaguille stopped before it and pointed his lance at it.

It snarled at him and in response Enaguille blasted forth a beam of ice concentrating through the spear. The demon was covered again with a coat of cobalt ice; which sparkled brilliantly in the pseudo sun. He then jabbed his lance through its skull, and to be sure it died he kicked it over with his foot and it broke into a dozen pieces.

"That works too," Yadriel said.

"Yea but what about the others?" Methais asked.

Enaguille had already turned from and began walking further into the mountain floor. "Hey man that's the direction all them demons are at!" Yadriel shouted at Enaguille.

He ignored him and continued on.

Yadriel looked at everyone, "What's he doing?"

Methais shook his head and said, "I don't know."

"Think he'll be alright?" Igor asked.

None of them had answers and were concerned for their friend, but they didn't want to follow him either. And so they waited.

"Anyone else hungry?" Curtis asked.

"I grew hungry hours ago," Igor said. "I just don't want to leave without Enaguille."

"I don't want to either, but we don't know where he's gone or what's happening to him," Methais said. "He could be dead from the demons or he could have found a way up and continued on without us."

He let out a deep sigh and said, "Alright let's go descend to the floor below grab some fruit and eat it on the way back up. Yadriel can you stay here and watch out for Enaguille to see if he returns?"

"What, why me?!" Yadriel asked disconcerted.

"Because if one of those things comes around, you can get away the easiest. Besides we won't be gone long."

"I can stay with Yadriel while we wait," Igor said. "Those things can be pretty sneaky and he can use an extra pair of eyes here."

Methais nodded at them both and said, "We'll be back soon." Then he and Curtis turned and walked to the stairs leading down; disappearing from sight shortly.

With them gone, Igor and Yadriel took a seat and tried relaxing best they could. While waiting Igor, used his magic to form up a small square rock and slowly he began pulling pieces away and reshaping it into what soon resembled a house. With nothing better to do Yadriel watched.

Eventually, Methais and Curtis returned with an extra dark fruit each and even one for Enaguille and tossed them to Igor and Yadriel. The two caught it and ate. Methais took a look at the small city formed of rocks by Igor and asked, "Still nothing then?"

"Nope," Yadriel said between bites.

Methais sighed and said, "Alright we'll wait it out until our stomachs empty again. If he's not returned by then Igor, you can leave him a message in the rocks and then we're going down."

And so they waited again until eventually they heard the sounds of approaching footsteps coming from the further mountain path. They turned their heads excited to see their friend, but instead their eyes beheld something... new.

Standing before them was a humanlike creature with cobalt blue skin and sapphire glowing eyes. They all stepped back and prepared to make a run for it when it spoke. "Shall we continue, or will you turn around and go home now?" The frigid prince asked.

*

Torrith swept his hand over the dusty book in the library. "The myths and legends of Aladorn," Torrith read the title out loud to himself. He grinned at the memories the book brought, he used to have Leana read him these fables every night before bed.

Taking a seat, Torrith picked up the book and flipped through the pages; reminiscing about when his world was full of impossible stories from this book. Every night he would dream of battling a giant armed with only a broad sword, or taming a giant eagle from the peak of the Drogav Mountains and riding it into battle.

He stopped rapidly flipping through the pages and slowed down now to look at the pictures. His eyes stopped on a picture of a human looking man sitting atop a glacial throne. "Zerek Aladorn, the first king..." Torrith read out-loud to himself unbelieving.

Every Aladorn noble knew the story of the first king Zerek, but his family line had died off years ago. And the Tarrock family took over the kingdom: as they were themselves originally descendants of Zerek Aladorn. But the family was split by his ancestor Beatrice, who took the last name Tarrock.

Torrith read on in the book, Maester Leana never read him this story. Whispering quietly to himself, "It is said that Zerek conquered these lands once inhabited by storm giants and in place of the eternal rains he used his frigid magic to change the weather so the lands would snow ever more and the winds would blow the cold up to the mountains; making the lands habitable for the first time in history.

"Zerek was a man of great height and a more slender build, his skin was cobalt blue, his long hair frosted blue and his eyes a radiant sapphire; glowing constantly. A king to behold, Zerek's ice magic made him immune to the cold and some even claim that fire couldn't even burn him."

"There is disturbing news from Evercain," Leana said quietly from behind Torrith.

His heat skipped several beats and his breath seemed to vanish from his lungs, but he didn't jump. The old Maester could move so quietly that she was like a shadow on the wall. Torrith often wondered what her life was like before she came into service of his family.

He turned to face her, closing the book with his off hand and asked, "What is it?"

She held out a rolled up parchment for him. He took it and she summarized its contents. "Evercain has been invaded by Kantor, their forces are inside the walls now and causing great havoc. They're requesting immediate assistance from us... promising anything in return."

"How did they get through the gate in the first place and why can't they handle Kantor on their own? Evercain's forces are vastly superior to them."

"Apparently there are many traitors in Aldon's company. Kantor was not only just let inside without resistance at the gate, but they managed to move their forces rather deep inside before they were met with any real resistance from soldiers. Furthermore, I have intel that suggests this may not be a random invasion, but a full-on coup as well."

Torrith stared at Maester Leana suspiciously now and asked, "Intel from where exactly?"

The elder Maester only crooked a wicked smile and for just the briefest of moments, as the candles at the table flickered, Torrith could swear Leana’s eyes were full black slits. But he quickly waved it off as a trick of the light as she said, "Come now my boy an elder woman has to have some secrets doesn't she? She would get too boring for the young to bother listening to if not."

Torrith sighed and read over the letter now. When he was done, he read it again much slower. He then took a seat and stared at it contemplating his options. Leana waited patiently for hours before Torrith finally made a decision.

Holding the edge of the rolled-up parchment to the candle flame, Torrith said, "My father and brother went over there to discuss terms of an alliance with them and he sent word back to me about it, then left for the tower."

The parchment caught on fire at last and burned to ash in seconds. "That was over a year ago and still I have not heard word of either of them, not even a simple letter. My father made a pact with Aldon, but he's gone, and I made no pact with him or brokered a deal.

"In order to get Kantor troops so deep inside Evercain without notice, means that Aldon has some extremely dangerous traitors in his company. I think it's in my kingdom's best interest that we take a page from the wise rulers of Dorgal and remain neutral for the time being at least."

"So we're not going to lift a finger to help them?" Leana asked.

"No, we shall wait to see how things play out. If Evercain, not Aldon, can get affairs in order and begin properly resisting Kantor, then I shall ride to their aid immediately with the full force of Aladorn at my back. But if Kantor overruns them then we will march in to eliminate their remaining forces and take the lands of Evercain for ourselves."

"You're much more like your father than all the others," Leana said with a smile.

Torrith stood up and stretched his legs. "I am his first born child after all."

"Yes, it's a shame too, I was hoping you would be more open to traditions. But when Enaguille, the true king of Aladorn, returns he can't have people like you getting in his way."

"What the hell are you talking about?" Torrith asked reaching cautiously for the knife hidden on the back of his belt.

Leana’s eyes changed to the full black sleights that he thought he saw before; except now it wasn't a trick of the light. He grabbed his dagger, but couldn't draw it in time as Leana stabbed her dark clawed hand through his chest, piercing his heart.

"Who are you?" He choked.

Leana pulled out her hand and Torrith fell on his side to the floor.

"Just a servant to the true king of Aladorn," she answered.

This story is protected by International Copyright Law, by the author, all rights reserved. If found posted anywhere other than storiesspace.com with this note attached, it has been posted without my permission.

Copyright © © Jake Pendragon all rights reserved 2015

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