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The prologue in the first book of the Destiny Saga.
Three bloodshot eyes peered through a grove of dead shrubs, watching the land ahead of them. Nemoro crouched low, his twisting, crimson horns barely visible behind the blackened and slightly tarred branches.
Before him, Eden flourished in a realm all its own. Rich green grass, and blossoms of budding spring trees, a blue sky filled with purple and green twinkling stars hovered above. The day moon was setting. Its pastel pink hue descending over the distant hills. Giving off its bright rays of light in the shape of a waxing crescent.
“My lord” a voice rasped from behind Nemoro. Nemoro turned around, to greet his disciple. “Yes, Kratos what is it?” He replied turning around to greet the creature behind him.
Kratos stood, 4 feet tall, hunch backed and covered in a strange mix of fur and scales. His face resembled that of a dog, the addition of spikes around his upper jaw. His bloodshot eyes glowed, resembling the color of rust. His hands looked almost too big for his body, and his fingers resembled eagle talons. He was clothed in tattered black and dark brown rags.
“My lord, the forest spirits have run amok again,” Kratos said, looking annoyed. “They’re growing too many trees again.”
Nemoro looked up at the greyed skies covered in brown clouds above him, and sighed. “Then get the slaves to exterminate them again,” he responded.
“My lord, we cannot exterminate them, they cannot die.”
“Then find a way to send them away!” Nemoro growled. Irritated at the tediousness of this interruption.
Kratos opened his mouth to speak, then closed it before turning to walk away.
Nemoro returned to his original task. He glanced around himself excitedly, as if waiting for something or someone to appear.
A woman, young and beautiful, began walking along the field in front of Nemoro. Her long strawberry blonde colored hair flowed in lush waves down to her hips. Her skin was dark, like that of Onyx. Her eyes as green as emeralds. Her nails reflected the color of a dawning summer sky. She wore a twisted pastel pink tube top, which stopped just above her navel. A pleated ankle length light green skirt wrapped around her waist, much like a sarong. Her feet were dressed with polished pearls, wrapped around her second toe and up the top of each foot, around each ankle, though the soles of her feet were bare. She hummed songs as she walked. Her eyes watching the grass ahead of her, taking in the sweet scent of the day’s end.
“Faith” Nemoro breathed, as if he’d caught a breath of the sweetest air in his lungs. He stepped out of his hiding place, and walked between the shrubs, dead twigs snapping in his wake.
The young girl gasped at the sound of twigs breaking at the edge of her realm. She looked in the direction of the sound, fnding a 7 foot tall pale and grey skinned man striding toward her. Three blood-shot, fluorescent-blue eyes stood in a triangle above a pointed nose, two twisting horns rose almost a full 7 inches out of his head. His hands, though they looked human had cracked, thick brown claws for fingernails. His robes were black, and covered in lines of triangles, and symbols of darkness. Each line glowed in yellow gold, or in reds and oranges, like embers and sparks smoldering away.
“Nemoro. What are you doing in Eden?” The young woman asked, shocked and almost revolted by the sight of the creature before her.
“I had to see you,” Nemoro responded. “I needed to be in your presence again Faith.”
“Nemoro, you and your kind cannot love, do not see beyond selfishness, greed and power,” Faith responded.
Nemoro flinched, acting hurt by Faith’s response. “Faith, my love, is it possible that maybe some of my kind can change?”
Faith rolled her now rich brown eyes. Her face having aged into a state of mid-life, of motherhood. Her hair, now the rich black color of a raven's feathers. Her clothes now draped over one shoulder in a Greek goddess like fashion. Her gown the color of a rich red apple. Her feet now wearing floral print slippers.
“Nemoro we cannot be. You know the law, the realms are separated for a reason.” Faith stepped back from Nemoro, attempting to turn away from him. She looked up at the rising night sun. A glimmer of blue and purple hues expanding over a cloudy, blissful sky. The rim of the black sun peeking over the horizon.
Nemoro followed Faith in her footsteps. He reached out to grab her hand. She pulled away. “Faith, please,” Nemoro begged. “Give me a chance to show you I’m not like the others in the colony, I don’t want to be back in the Realm of Perdition. I can’t stand the ways of life there. Or lack thereof.” He continued, a note of despair in his voice, glancing down at the slowly deadening grass at his feet.
Faith turned away, his strange features leaving her delirious with curiosity, enticing her senses. She turned back, admiring the way the eternal grass of the realm of Eden died slowly around Nemoro’s feet. Admiring the trail of dead grass that stemmed from his hiding place at the borders between each realm.
Nemoro reached out for Faith a second time. Pulling her into a delicate embrace. “My love, please I doubt we have much longer,” he begged.
Faith reached her hand up to caress Nemoro’s disfigured and strange face. His skin felt like ice under her touch, though the heat of his robes burned to the touch.
“Nemoro, why can’t we just leave?” Faith sighed. “We cannot be, the laws are clear. But we could leave. The fountain of youth, we’d never have to deal with these laws again.”
Nemoro reached into his pocket. He pulled out a skull that looked like it had been covered in tar. Petrified spiders sat in place of its eyes, and Amber glowed where the teeth should have been. He handed the skull to Faith. “Our time is about to end my dear. Take this - a gift for you, keep it safe for me will you?”
Faith took the skull, the Amber glowed to her touch. She gasped, looking slightly dazed. “Farewell, Nemoro,” she said, before fading away into nothing.
Nemoro walked back to his realm, a cynical smile on his face. The grass coming back to life as his boots touched the blackened and bloodied earth of his realm once more. Kratos, waiting for his return.
Nemoro growled, irritated at the sight of Kratos, hoping it wasn’t more nonsense about the tree-spirit pests.
“My lord, where is the artifact?” Kratos asked, a hint of worry in his voice. “I’ve just been to the Mosque, looking for someone to get rid of those damned pests and I’ve found our most treasured artifact is missing!”
Nemoro waved his hand dismissively. “Ignore its absence Kratos, I’ve plans in motion,” he said, walking deeper into his territory.
Kratos, looking shocked, followed Nemoro curiously. “But sir! If the artifact. It’s value is beyond comprehension! Should it fall into the right hands, the whole of the Nexus would be doomed!”
Nemoro turned, a cynical smile on his face. “Kratos! Put it out of your mind. As your leader, that is an order.”
They continued down their path, walking up a steep staircase, and through two black and boney doors. “Go home Kratos, back to your duties of our realm. Leave the Artifact to me.”
Kratos bowed low, backing out of the castle, closing the bone doors in front of him.
Nemoro sighed, looking up at the Pitch black sky. “In time Faith. You will be mine, and the whole of the Council will bend to my will.”