The man squinted his abstruse eyes, looking at the wide and vast world underneath the heavens. He wore a white cloak, and underneath it was a pair of strong arms holding onto a black and dull scabbard. The man stood upright like a proud lion.
“Your Majesty, It’s getting late.”
“Krentel, guess what I am looking at.” The old man smiled and turned his head.
“The land beyond the plains, at Aouine, Your Majesty.”
“Aouine, the land that we vowed to protect… But you’re wrong this time. I’m looking at my sword, Krentel.” The old man retracted his gaze. The sword seemed uniquely slender, but it was powerful enough to hold up the skies.
“Will there be anyone who picks up this sword, wipes off the dust and remember our oath after hundreds and thousands of years? Can the people of the future stand the test of time? Tell me, my friend. How long do you think Aouine will last?”
“Aouine will continue until the end of time, Your Majesty.”
“What if they forget their promises one day? Kirrlutz was once glorious, but they too fell. This could happen to the people of Aouine as well.”
“Krentel, Aouine is not what I want.”
As the clouds reflected in his steel-blue irises, ash settled down on his wrinkles at the corners of his eyes. The passage of time had taken a heavy toll on him, and he could feel the dying flame in his heart. But at that moment, it was rekindled.
He had seen too many wars and too much suffering far too many good men and women had been sacrificed for this land.
He closed his eyes. The images of the past were coated in a golden sheen, like the warm glow of the evening sun when they first left Kirrlutz.
He thought back to the moment when it all began.
“What I want is not Aouine, Krentel. It’s devotion to this piece of land that I was inspired to build. What I want is for this culture to continue spreading into the future. I wish that its heart – these aspirations – will not be forgotten. I want the nobles to always remember their duties, for them to be the light that guides Aouine in the dark.”
“Remember, if one day, the people of Aouine forget their duties… Return this sword to where it came from and stop protecting this country.”
Return this sword to where it came from.
“Your Majesty, the people of Aouine have forgotten everything.”
“Although it has only been 200 years.”
“This piece of land no longer upholds your wishes from back then.”
But today, the sword had returned to Aouine.
The blade filled Krentel’s vision with golden rays. It shuddered in the girl’s hands as if it had been reborn. Its vibrations were so strong that it could break
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