Dragon's Breath

  • Viscount

    In the busy streets during the midday buzz of the Myralian markets, a cloaked boy hides behind a bazaar wall. He awaits in the corner of the marketplace, resting near the back alleys. Suddenly, upon his back he feels the gentle nudge of a foot, pressing against him. Startled, he drops some stolen spices from the stash within his cloak, and immediately ducks to cover them with his body. He peers upward with an innocent grin. Towering above him, he discovers a tall man, elven by show of his pointed ears and discolored skin, tinted with a sickish yellow. Intimidated, the boy shudders and further covers his stolen goods.

    "By what means do you find yourself here today, scrambled upon the filthy ground, covered in a raggedy cloak?" The elven man queries. "From where do you come, what is your name?" The stranger bends to a knee, beside the bazaar, with the boy. "What do you do today?" He seems genuine and intrigued, yet creepy and ill-mannered. The child presses backward against the wall, exposing a slightly cracked jar of ginger from beneath his cloak. The strange elven man slowly reaches outward, toward the jar, and grabs it by two fingers. "My, by the love of the ground beneath our feet, what are you doing with this?" He outspokenly hollers. Shocked, the boy's eyes widen, and he reaches back to the man, grabbing hold of his jar of ginger.

    "Hey there!" The man behind the wall, within the bazaar, shouts as he notices the pair beside his shop. He alerts the two, as they both become tense. "That may be my ginger, now might it be? Thief! I demand of you, stand and return what you have taken." The angry man reaches downward toward the child.

    "Take my hand, young one!" The elven man cries, and the boy drops many more spices from his cloak as he is pulled upward by the stranger. He looses all of his spices, save the ginger between the hands of the two.

    Down the dark alleyway beyond the markets the two run. On either side of the boy, he sees crooked-looking elven men licking odd delicacies. As the man drags him by one hand, the boy stumbles and throws the hood of his cloak over his head, by the other. Around him, the world moves so quickly, the boy feels dizzy and looses himself in the sudden adrenaline. Beyond the body of his elven captor, the boy sees light piercing through the alley a short distance away. He covers his eyes as is gets brighter, while letting his legs fall to autopilot as he is taken forward. Alas, the two reach the end of the alley. A new environment of homes and gardens takes the boy by surprise, until the elven man rushes him behind a house.

    "I am sorry for that, young boy. Ah, but yes, this ginger is quite nice. Good snatch, boy." The elven man appreciates the boy for a moment. "I am, who they call back home, Alwyn. You may know me as Al, if you would like to see fit." Alwyn introduces himself to the boy, and gives him a friendly rub on the head. The boy etches backward and flinches. "Oh my, child. No need to fear Alwyn. I am elven man of Trefallt, town of the woodlands and pleasure. I have arrived in your lands on mission, you see. I desire delicacy of great wonder and experience." He tells the boy. "Young boy, what might I call you?" He asks, calmly.

    "Enio." The boy whispers. He coughs, and stands taller. "Enio. I am Enio." He declares, with a stronger presence. "I saw many strangers, strangers who look like you, with many strange delicacies in the alley. Do you come for those?" Enio asks.

    "Ah, yes... Enio. I come for delicacies. However no, Enio my sweet boy, they are common elven men, here to live the life of lesser Myralian stimulants. Alwyn seeks something more. Something remarkable." Alywn introduces his aspirations.

    "What have you come for, Al?" Enio inquires.

    "They call it here, Dragon's Breath. Word tells Alwyn it comes from the Elder Beast known as Myral. Ah... yes, his essence is as pure as the divine..." Alwyn becomes entranced in his own words, and dazes away from the conversation.

    Enio stares as Alwyn. A good stare, fill of curiosity and wonder, yet a little fear and caution. He grabs his ginger from Alwyn's hand, and places it within his cloak. Enio then takes a step backward, for the sake of simple caution.

    "Al, why have you taken me?" Enio almost demands of his new elven acquaintance.

    "Forgive me?" Alwyn returns to the world around him, away from his dream state. "Oh, yes. I have rescued you, Enio! Alwyn only did Enio a favor." Alwyn speaks with a sly nature, and places his hand upon Enio's shoulder. "Alwyn does Enio favor, now Enio does Alwyn favor."

    "What do you want from me?" Enio removes Alwyn's hand from his body. "What can I possibly do for you? I am but a child, a poor orphaned child." Enio grits his teeth for a moment, before he relaxes and slumps his posture. "What can I do for you?" He calmly asks.

    "Ah, Enio sees that Alwyn is man of yellow color. Alwyn is not appreciates in the market, yes. Thief boy of pale skin such as Enio, though, yes. He may be disregarded in public area." Alwyn suggests. "Thief boy steal ginger so well, ah yes! A great snatch. Thief boy may steal again." Alwyn tells of his idea.

    "What do you want? The markets are busy, the Dragon's Awakening festivities are raging in the square!" Enio is concerned, and worried.

    "Yes, oh yes! Enio understands my excitement! The festivities are raging in Myralis, yes, oh yes! The dragon has come! Now is the time, thief boy Enio, the festivities distract the Myralian people, yes?" Alwyn raises his arms, and Enio flinches. Alwyn then proceeds to spin and dance, humming to some foreign tune.

    "Meet me here for when I return." Enio demands, as Alwyn continues to dance, returning to his dream state. "I assume you want this... Dragon's Breath..." Enio whispers, lightly, as he makes his way back into the alleyway.

    Enio steadily shuffles through the dark alley. His vision is clouded, almost, by puffs of smoke from the strange elven men who rest with their narcotics along the edges of the alley. Some men stare profusely at the pale boy who interrupts their midday pleasures, Enio takes note and continues to wander forward. He begins to breathe faster, with shorter breaths. Alas, he returns to the corner of the marketplace from where he had begun. The bazaar he had hidden beside is now occupied by a guard. Enio scutters by, catching a glimpse of the shopkeep taking a broom to the spilled spices and broken glass.

    At the end of the street, Enio is greeted by the large plaza, the home of the City Lord's market. A gorgeous site, indeed. Myralian people flood the plaza, overwhelming the shopkeeps who tend to their markets in the busy area. At the end of the plaza stands the manor of the lord, who overlooks the daily occurrences without much regard. Enio immediately feels claustrophobic, he is scared and surrounded. He had never truly entered this part of the city, but rather remained on the outskirts, the less occupied market roads. He takes each step forward with caution, until a man behind him crashes into his back, knocking him to his knees. Enio looks up, and is immediately surrounded by nearly a herd of people to his left and to his right. He ducks down, covering his head with his hands, and his eyes begin to tear.

    Suddenly, his mind feels empty. It feels lonely, yet occupied by another presence. Confused, Enio opens his eyes. He sees nothing but the light of the sky, brightness, a white canvas.

    "Hello, Enio." An ominous voice speaks. Enio is startled, but he cannot move. Without warning, he finds himself in some sort of spectral plane. Something magical and mysterious. He can see his hands, he can move them. Yet, he feels nothing but the ground he still lays upon.

    "Who are you? Where am I? What is happening?" Enio screams in this new location. "Who are you?" He repeats, anxious and terrified.

    "Ignorant vassal! I am your protector, your lord! I am none but Myral!" The voice echoes throughout the blank canvas-like world. "Oh, perhaps a bit too harsh. You are, indeed, but an orphan boy, aren't you? You have my kindest regards. I am sorry for startling you."

    "What is happening?" Enio looks around the blank void, until he notices in the distance a large silhouette. "Is that you? Myral? In the distance." Enio begins to walk forward.

    "It is my divine essence that brings you here, child, am I correct?" Myral asks, maddeningly.

    "Yes, yes sir! I am sorry!" Enio panics.

    "Then you may receive! I appreciate your honesty. Follow my guide and I shall allow you to safely intercept some of my essence from the shopkeep who holds the stash." The silhouette dissapears, and Enio awakens from the mysterious trance.

    The world around Enio dulls. The Myralian men and women around him disappear, and a path of light shimmers ahead of him. Enio slowly advances through the path without a single disruption. He finds himself at the bazaar that holds the breath. There is no shopkeep. Enio snatches a plethora of jars, all packaged in a crate. It is almost weightless.

    Enio then falls unconscious.

    "Yes, oh yes! Thief boy, wake, wake child! Enio has Dragon's Breath!" A familiar voice is screaming above Enio's unconscious body.

    "Who?" Enio whimpers, as he slowly wakes and rises. His vision begins to clear, and he sees Alwyn peering down at him from above, seemingly overly excited. "How did I get here?"

    "Yes, I do not know! Alwyn had woken from a peaceful nap, to find thief boy beside Alwyn, enjoying peaceful nap as well, yes!" Alwyn proclaimed. He began to dig into the crate, opening it and retrieving two jars of Dragon's Breath. "Ah, yes. Yes! Alwyn is happy to see! Here, thief boy, thank you!" Alwyn hands a jar of the strange delicacy to Enio. "Try, yes, try! Enio must try!" Alwyn hums a foreign tune as he cracked open the top of the jar, as Enio began to pull his danka from within his cloak.

    "No, no! Absolutely no, yes! Thief boy must not use stolen blade!" Alwyn confiscates the danka, and holds it upright. He repeats a mantra many times, in a language Enio cannot understand. Suddenly, the blade melts and the handle catches fire. Alwyn kicks the handle aside and spits into the melted blade. Enio stares and is shocked, by shakes his head and looks kindly toward Alwyn.

    "Normally, upon consumption, I thank my lord, Darius. Today, I thank you, Alwyn. For Alwyn!" Enio cheers, and the two take their shots at the delicacy.

    "Wait... Alwyn..." Enio begins to grow weary and confused, as Alwyn deteriorates into sparkling dust. Enio looks downward, and sees as his limbs begin to do the same. Suddenly, the two find themselves floating above the capital city of Myralis, laughing together, in harmony.

    "Yes, Alwyn, yes!" Enio shouts.

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