To Walk The Mist Chapter 1
A young man with dark brown hair; half of it secured away at the top of his head and the rest flowing down his back, struggled to get up as his ears rang. He tried to stand but the earth spun.
"Valley Master! Valley Master!" he heard himself called. A hand held him up steady, allowing his balance to return to him.
"Valley Master, we won!" the person holding him up shouted excitedly. His ears rung harder at the shout and he winced away from the one holding him, only to stumble back onto the wet ground. He knelt in place and stared up at his surroundings. He could see a jubilant bunch shouting out 'victory'. For a second he wondered what he was doing there, then it all came back to him.
Valley Master? That was him they were calling, yet it was unfamiliar to him. He was Edward Desecar, Prince of Emerald and Jurazel. He had arrived here a few years ago. Where he was from, he had been on a quest. One of the requirements of the quest was that he walked The Mist. The Mist. Yes, that is where this should be. But he was not entirely sure. He remembered the rippers letting down their dark cloaks and blinding light engulfing him.
Next thing he knew, he was lying in this unknown place. He had first thought it was part of the test, but he was not entirely sure any more. The first few months, he endured in the Valley, trying to understand where he was. This place was considered part of the west and there was an emerald and Jurazel but they had long become one kingdom. The king there was a man he had never heard of before. This only told him, he may have traveled in time to the future. But the other kingdoms he heard about were ruled by kings he knew were long dead in his world. He tried to ask people what was going on but many stared at him weirdly.
He started to go by the name Ed here. When he had first told people his last name, they Laughed and said, "thinking your self part of the old blood of emerald, are you?"
After living here for a few years, he wondered if he would ever get back? He wanted to leave this valley, but one needed 10 spirit tokens to do so. A spirit token was equivalent to three thousand gold coins. He had spent his time doing odd jobs but had not come close to that number. He was comforted by the fact that none of the big families in the valley had these tokens laying around. They would usually have to wait for the trade to get some, and the trade came once every ten years.
It was on his fifteenth year in this strange land that he was found by the valley chief and adopted as his son. The Valley chief was ecstatic when he met Ed and said that his spirit roots were strong. He wanted to train him into the next Valley chief. That is how he found him self here in this situation, after winning a war against the opposing tribe who rebelled against his adopted father's position as head of the valley.
Ed turned to his subordinates with a frown they were used to seeing on his face.
"Clear up here and return." He left his instruction, before he climbed on his horse and rode back to the tribe.
His horse was not a normal horse; it was a spirit beast, so he rode faster than horses Ed ever saw back in his world. He was yet to really understand this world, but he understood a few things, he was really weak in this world. Back where he was from, he could be considered one of the best warriors in the west. Yet here, he was nothing more than a normal person. He could not fault this analysis, because he had seen those considered strong here, and they were incredible.
Many here cultivated spirit bodies. This was the power of this world. He had only started cultivating this art after his adoption,while others had long started cultivating since age three, but he was strong enough to defend his title as the Valley Master and the next Valley Chief.
Many bowed as he entered the tribe gates that said Jhun Yui Tribe. He rode straight to the main house and dismounted.
"The great Valley Master approaches." a voice full of mockery said. Ed turned to meet his brother. The true son of the Valley Chief, Hun Ou. Hun Ou stared at Ed his eyes full of hate. He may not have been as strong as the direct young masters of other tribes, but he was still eligible for the Valley Chief position. Before his father went out and returned with this unknown man he was supposed to call brother, he was referred to as Valley master even though he had not formally taken the title. Now he was just the Valley chief's second son. Ed was older than him, so father had insisted he be known as the first son. He, Hun Ou had become a shamed man. A man who could not even maintain his position as first son, a title one was born with, something ordained by fate, and he still managed to have it taken from him.
Ed but glanced at his adopted brother and walked away. He was already immune to these taunts and he understood why the Valley Chief's sons did not like him. He was not related to them by blood, and truly, he did not care. He was not of this world. He had to go back and finish his quest. This position of Valley Master held no meaning for him. It's only perk was that he needed not work too much for the money to leave in five years, he could leave when the Valley Chief allowed it.
Walking in briskly, he made his way to the Valley Chief's court yard. He was familiar with the way, so it took little time before he stood before the door.
"I request an audience with father." he said. Father, that word sounded odd to him. The man looked nothing like his father back home. But nevertheless, this man was his ticket out of here.
"Enter." a strong voice said from inside. He opened the door and bowed before walking in.
"You have handled the battle?" The clean shaved elderly man with a head full of white hair looked at him. Ed kept his head bowed as he answered, "Yes, father. We won."
"As expected." the Valley Chief said mildly, "Sit down, Ed. I have somethings to discourse with you."
"What is it father?" Ed asked as he sat down.
"You mentioned Leaving the Valley to explore once before. I have always said if you reached the picking spirit stage, I will let you go out. After all, that is the only way for you to be safe outside. Something has come up. The The Emperor Sage academy has sent notice that they will be coming to hold an examination in the valley. You must forget all your responsibilities and go into contemplation. The other Tribes have been informed. The slots for acceptance is limited. You must make sure you get a slot." the Valley Chief said.
Ed maintained his forever blank expression and asked, "Who are they? The Sage Emperor Academy, what are they?" He asked.
"Oh, I forgot, you have never bee out of this valley. They are an academy based in the west. They are second best only behind the Spring Light Valley. Both are schools, but the Spring Light Valley is a sect. Unlike the Emperor Sage academy, the Spring Light Valley only accepts girls. Usually a sect would require you swear loyalty to them and would teach you but, they become a clan on it's own. The Sage Emperor academy, concentrates on teaching alone. You need not swear loyalty forever. You could graduate and decide to become an elder, but that is up to you. When they come, they will hold a series of tests. You must pass this and bring me Honor." the Valley Chief explained.
"I will try my best not to fail you, father." Ed said before as he bowed, then took his leave. When he closed the door to his father's room, he took in a deep breath. Leaving the Valley, he had waited for the moment for fifteen years. As he walked back to his court yard, he wondered about what would happen when he leaves the Valley. This Valley was part of the mist. Would this mean he would be returning to his world? All will be clear when he leaves. He could fill energy sing in his bones as he arrived before his court yard. It was large and greatly furnished. He took a seat on his bed and opened his space bag. From it, he took out a sword. The sword shined a hallow of blue when it touched his hand and the blade seemed to sing and buzz. This sword had been doing this a lot for a while now. He wondered what it meant. This was the sword he was given by the oracle when he accepted his quest. It had come with him to this world. That and a piece of Tyraniya's Hair. He had cut a piece without her knowledge while she had slept at Deranox.
As at then, he was not sure why he had done it, he had only just learned of her identity and he guessed curiosity took over. Now, these two things were the only thing he had of his world. The hair was tied together with a white strip of cloth. It was a large amount of hair he had cut because it was the size of a thumb. He looked at the hair and the string. It was a red string when he had used it to tie the hair, but it had turned White the next time he set eyes on it. The hair made him wonder about her, what was she doing? His quest was to go and save her. If he does not leave this place, what would happen to her? What if he takes too long?
"Are you thinking about her?" a girl asked from the door way. Ed put back the hair and sword first before turning to look at her. She was his cousin, or better Yet, adopted cousin. The only one that did not find him an eyesore. She had sneaked into his room at night to steal the keys to the armory when she heard him call her name in his sleep. She was still a child of fifteen so, she remained nave. After escaping with the keys and causing an uproar in the tribe, she asked out of curiosity who Tyraniya Was. When he asked her in anger how she had heard of the name, she said she heard him say it in her sleep, giving away the fact that she had come into his room at night and was the one who took the key. He frowned at her.
She may be the only one that likes him in the entire family, but her constant insistence to be where he was caused him a lot of trouble, making him wonder if she truly liked him at all. Looking at her innocent face, he sighed inside. This girl, what did she want now?
"Why are you here, Jian Ou?" he asked her.
"I heard that the Emperor sage academy is coming to recruit disciples. I know Uncle Valley Chief must have told you. Are you preparing?" Jian Ou asked. Uncle Valley chief? Ed sighed inside. This girl had always been mischievous. He had noticed something about the way she was treated since the day he came. She could get away with anything. She may be a girl from the second family, a daughter of the Valley Chief's younger brother, but people suspected she may be the Valley Master's blood child. She was someone the valley Chief dared not hurt. The other tribe chiefs had made it clear, that no one should touch her.
She was playful all the time, but only around Ed. To others, she preferred to caused them trouble when they annoy her. But with Ed, she was obedient, and even cheeky. Still, she had weird contemplation techniques. Those that were not in the Valley's Library. How she got these, he did not know. But she always gave him new ones to please him. Her unusual like for him, made the other family members and even elders jealous. He knew this girl must not be simple if even the Valley Chief wanted to be on her good side.
"How can I practice when you are here?" Ed asked.
"Oh? Brother Ed, you have risen a rank!" she said excitedly.
"Are you intending to participate in the admissions?" he asked her and she nodded.
"Mn. Brother Ed will be there, so I must come too!" she nodded her head vigorously. He wondered if her head would fall off one day. Was he surprised she wanted to come? She had the habit of following him around.
"Then go practice." he said hoping she would go away.
"Brother Ed, I have some new techniques, would you like to see?" she pouted as though wronged.
"Let me see." he said and her face brightened as she bounced over to his side.
She handed him a space bag full of techniques and he started to scroll through it. He already had a contemplation technique that was suitable for his gray spirit core, so he had no interest in these. Most of the time, he just took some techniques that he could learn when he entered the spirit picking stage. At this stage, he could practice multiple techniques. But something caught his eye; there was a book titled, Space and Realms. It had caught his attention, causing him to open it and start reading as Jian Ou watched.
The realms of men and immortals are stages as vast as the skies and one ought not aim to reach the pinnacle, one ought to love the journey. This is possible for those aware of the unknown lands; the forests of truth and dare, the runes of ancient kings, The Mist. These are the places beyond time and realms. Places of no place.
"Where did you get this?" Ed asked almost shouting and startling Jian Ou.
"Do you like it? It's just a stupid old book. You can have it." she said excited that he found something he liked.
"I can keep this?" he asked her and she nodded enthusiastically.
This was the first time he had seen anything that mentioned The Mist. Could this book be it? Could this be his guide out of this place? Tyraniya.... he had finally got a clue.