Chapter 2:

Twilight Years of Golden Age (2)

A Storm of Prophecy

14th August 822 of Albion Calendar is the day the children were born.

The stories about children of prophecy were ancient, and by the time they were born once again 5000 years later, most doesn't know much about them. Only a select few from the senary temple knew about its history and the exact date the children will be born.

The emperor made sure to kill every last one of them across the world, and it had cost him a lot of gold. The dark brotherhood services come at a price. He made sure to use everything at his disposal to erase those who know anything about the prophecy. Senery temples were independent and united so the information was compromised. The seer that foretold prophecy didn't tell anyone, but Arthur didn't like to take chances.

It was an unforgivable sin to take the life of a priest over a mere doubt of betrayal. But to the king, it was a necessary evil to save his son. If one of the nine found out about his son's secret, they will use him to get their hands on the mythical stone to control the world.

A day after the prince's birth, a letter came from the emperor ordering Gilmour to execute the witnesses. If the child was born at an auspicious time, Gilmour would have still murdered the servants. It was a tragic inevitable outcome.

A Month later, after butchering every threat to the future of his son. Arthur ordered glimour and mary to return. The newborn prince's name was Charles, Arthur named him after the first emperor of Albion, and Charles's date of birth changed from 15th to 18th. 18th August is the same day people celebrate the festival of lights. It was the day when the dragon war ended, and humanity survived.

Nobody knew the true history of the first age of chaos as the Dragon Emperor burned down the ancient libraries at the second age of chaos. Whatever people know now was passed down from their ancestors.

The most accurate one is from the records of the Jnanai temple. According to those records the gods gave humans mythical stones to save the world. The accurate details about the powers of the stones were still unknown but what is known is that each stone contained knowledge of certain types of magic spells.

Arthur hid Mary's pregnancy as a secret to prevent any assassination attempts from happening. Charles may be was born to a lower-class woman, but Arthur's favouritism to mary planted doubt among the nobility. Those who support other princes whom they can puppet were afraid of this outcome. Arthur was delighted to learn about his son's destiny. A child of prophecy who will become the saviour of the entire world. He wanted to see him right away but instead waited.

Consort Mary held Charles wrapped in the warm blankets in her arms and stared at the forest through the carriage's window. She could see the shiny eyes of the little folk who made their homes on top of the trees. The little folk were miniature humans with the ability to control animal life. They are the protectors of forest life who aren't afraid of facing tall folk if they harm the forest life.

Gilmour bought reinforcements with the permission of Lord Edward Kingsly, ruler of Borealis, the northern province. Borealis under his rule thrived in the last two decades. Edward avoided the petty politics of capital and did his job as the ruler of the north, solely focusing on improving his lands. By the time they reached the capital, it was dark, and most people in the city were sleeping. The capital was the epitome of beauty, with beautiful wooden houses and clean streets. The royal residence was situated at ember mountain at the edge of the capital. It was a lavish structure surrounded by gigantic white walls. They called it the dragon palace as it used to be the dragon king's home thousands of years ago until Albion fought back against his oppressive rule.

 At that time, prince Clovis was a child of prophecy. He and other children fought against the dragon king Ragnar and defeated him in an epic battle. Dragon King's dragon when saw her master die shed tears of sadness. Those tears turned the entire palace into a pale structure. The dragon turned into a pale unbreakable statue in the middle of the throne room. The royal family left it that way for millenniums to show Albion's victory over the unbeatable dragon king.

The palace and the capital were divided by a river. So they had to cross the dragon bridge to get inside. The carriage crossed the dragon bridge and entered the white palace. Emperor Arthur was present along with his guards at his back. They were watching over their ruler cautiously. Gilmour helped mary out as she held her son in her hands. The guards wore silver-plated armour and a pointed helm with a faceguard that covered everything except the eyes. The white cloaks at their backs flew when they were kissed by the night wind. 

The emperor was happy to see the only woman he ever loved. Sometimes he wished that if they met in different circumstances, they would have been happier. He never wanted to marry anyone other than Mary only had to do it to gain alliances. The Goldberg family was very influential. Arthur married their daughter Fiona to save himself from his murderous half brother Albrecht. Albrecht was a dangerous man with achievements in battles that made commoners hail him as a hero. Nobles, on the other hand, hated him for his distasteful activities and ruthlessness. 

Arthur used their hate as an opportunity and won them over. Henry, the emperor of that time, was afraid that his son will lead an uprising. So he sent Albrecht to invade Suvai island, controlled by the Acinus a conquest that will never have closure. He died on that island after duelling the crimson knight a mysterious warrior who appeared out of nowhere and challenged strong people to duel and disappeared after defeating them.

 Arthur held his son and said, "He looks more like you," Mary gave a faint smile. He walked near Gilmour and whispered a thank you. He might be a knight obeying orders. But to Arthur, he was a good friend that he could count in. Gilmour ordered his men at kings guard to escort the soldiers from north to their barracks. Gilmour and his second in command, Henry, followed the emperor. The emperor held her forearm and guided her to her chambers.

 The guards waited outside as the king put the boy gently in his crib. He embraced mary and whispered, "I missed you" She tried to squirm out of his grip, but he held her tightly."I am sorry that I had to send you away. I am glad everything is all right." He let go of her, and she glared at him."You ordered Gilmour to murder them as soon as I give birth, didn't you?" 

 "You were supposed to be better than your brother. You murdered those innocent people who did nothing wrong," She glared at him with disgust. He hated that. He averted his gaze and gazed at the boy. "All I did was for you and our child,"

 "Those servants, they did nothing wrong. They had families. You didn't even spare their children." He turned his back on her and murmured, "I will see you tomorrow," and walked out of the room. Jessalynn scuttled into the chamber as the king left.

 Mary let out a sigh as she settled down on the bed. Jessalynn went into the attached bathroom and prepared the bath. Mary sat by the crib and rocked it, tears welled in her eyes. Mary gazed at her son dolefully, "I don't want my son to have this kind of future." Jessalyn stood silent. Mary continued, "I want to take him away from this palace. I want him to be happy. I don't care about that stupid prophecy. I want my son away from this senseless violence."

 Jessalyn stared at the consort with pity. Jessalyn is a young woman with tan skin and pretty looking face. When she was 12 Albion invaded her homeland resulting in the death of her family. Mary bought her freedom from a perverted slave master and treated her like family. She wanted to help her saviour, but there was nothing she could do.

At midnight when mary went to sleep, a man in black robes crept inside her room with a dagger in his hand. A black hood and black mask concealed his identity. He lifted his dagger to strike the young prince, but before he could land the blow, a thick black smoke came out of the prince's body and formed like a shadowy man made out of smoke. The shadowy figure grabbed the assassin's dagger held right hand and used his left hand to muffle the assassin's voice.

Then the shadowy figure forced the assassin to slit his own throat. The man fell to the ground his blood flowed like wine on the pale marbled floor. Mary woke from her sleep and shrieked at the sight of the carcass. The shadowy figure disappeared after killing the assassin. The guards bolted in, unsheathing their swords. Even at the sight of a dead body, they were calm and collected, just like they trained to be. Jessalynn rushed from her room beside the consorts chambers as soon as she heard the commotion.

The guards kept her at bay until the consort allowed her to come to her side. Henry the second in command of the royal guard strode in front of her chamber and escorted her and the young prince out of the room. He strongly reprimanded the other guards for not doing it sooner. One of the guards fetched captain Gilmour. The first thing he did was to make sure mary and the prince were alright. 

The guards have removed the mask of the assassin. That assassin was Dary Prakels the personal bodyguard of Cornelius Goldberg.

The dagger of the assassin was a gift from Cornelius's brother in law Richard Winston. Gilmour knew about it as he was present when the gift was given. They also found a letter that was strikingly similar to Queen Fiona's handwriting. Gilmour's eyes flickered to the open window.

The assassin climbed up there, but the guards would have noticed it from their spots at the walls. He strode to the window and saw guards were missing from their assigned spots. "Bunch of incompetent fools," Gilmour cursed under his breath. If anything happened to mary and prince Gilmour would have made the lives of those guards completely miserable.

He snapped out of the rage to collect his thoughts. Queen Fiona wasn't stupid enough to leave obvious evidence that will get her in trouble. Someone was trying to frame her. The guy left the evidence there and slit his own throat why would he do that? However, Gilmour didn't care about the truth. She was a threat, and this was an opportunity to take her down.

Taking her down with this evidence was possible but not easy as the Goldberg family was powerful. The cowardly Arthur wouldn't fight the mighty Goldbergs. But William Phoenix can do that.


The Goldberg's were gaining a lot of influence with their shady businesses. Phoenix family was their rival. Cornelius and William were both in the same council of nine.
If one of them dies, the other profits. The problem was that a lot of people supported him. So to make them turn on Goldbergs, strong evidence was needed. Gilmour got a great idea that involved him using the secret spell that unlocks secrets

"Henry, take your men and find those bastards who abandoned the posts."

It didn't take that much time for henry to find out the guards with pockets full of gold drunk at a tavern. Arthur and Gilmour were at dungeons. Those guards were all line up near the wall, and Gilmour whipped them hard. They already told him everything before they even got whipped. But the punishment was required. They confirmed that queen Fiona had given them gold coins to look the other away. He hit them harder and kept hitting them until the emperor asked him to stop. Arthur, after that, went to his chambers and wrote a royal decree to imprison the treasonous Goldberg family.

While the magic flowed in all humans on the planet, only noble blooded individuals could perform powerful magic. The common folk can do magic, but they were not as powerful as lesser nobles and high nobles. A highly trained high noble can kill hundreds of common folk without breaking a sweat. 

High Nobles kept their bloodline clean for thousands of years and for a nobleman to have a child with a low born woman is a crime punishable by death and only an emperor was an exception. But still, there were some illegitimate children of noblemen running around since the people of the present time weren't following the ancient laws properly. These illegitimate children weren't taught magic like trueborn children. So they, without the guidance of a teacher, were useless

Fiona was a queen and a high noble, and despite having less training than men in her family, she was as powerful as an average knight. The knights were the second borns from lesser noble families that were well off but with less political influence. Those powerless noblemen were obliged to send their secondborns to train as knights.

Those children learnt magic and martial arts and other things necessary to become a knight. Those who ranked in the top 5 at the final test were allowed to choose wherever they want to work.

Those who failed had nowhere to go because before leaving for the training, they had to sign a contract to have no share in their father's wealth in front of an official overseer. If the parents refuse to send their children away, they would have to pay a hefty sum. The sum was bigger than what an average lesser noble earn in a year. For thousands of years, the high nobles strictly maintained the status quo by not allowing anyone to reach them. Most nations, not just Albion, followed this system. The captain of the royal guard strode to the queen's room. He ordered his men to take her into the dungeons. They locked her in a cell with iron bars. She hurled certain curses that put common rabble to shame.

"You bastard, my father will hear about this! You and your little minions will be begging for mercy."

"You and your father will hang, you bloody wench," Gilmour said snarling, at her.

"That's impossible," She said. Gilmour leaned closer and whispered, "Your father's head will be on a spike soon. Just before I dragged you here, I sent my men and to arrest your father. We put him in a secret cell and extracted some information. I used my family's secret magic spell to look into his mind. He carefully hid all of the evidence on a magical stone by sealing it with a powerful spell inside of a locket. All the illicit deals he was involved in are inside of a locket." He pointed his hand towards her and cast "memorias" It was a spell to show someone memories. Fiona couldn't defend herself from that spell as they bought her in with shackles made out of darkburn ore. Darkburn ore nullified any magic wielder's ability to use magic. She saw everything that her father had done. Including that one memory when her father murdered the servent boy she had an affair with years ago. Her face went pale. She, at that moment, understood Gilmour wasn't lying. She ordered several assassinations on mary. In her mind, she was completely justified. She loved the king. It was love at first sight. He was handsome and respectful, not like his bloodthirsty half brother. She was happy to marry him, but it ended up like a loveless marriage as the king fell in love with an illegitimate daughter of a lower class noble family. She tried to kill her several times, but this time she was innocent of the crime.

Her pale face was tear-streaked. She looked at Gilmour and grovelled before him. He never thought he would see the ruthless queen of Albion in such a pitiful state. She begged him to save her. She vehemently stated that she was innocent. Gilmour understood that this was an attempt to frame the queen but he didn't care. This was a perfect opportunity to get rid of her. Her pale face is tear-streaked. She looked at Gilmour and grovelled before him. He never thought he would see the ruthless queen of Albion in such a pitiful state. She begged him to save her. She vehemently stated that she was innocent. Gilmour understood that this was an attempt to frame the queen, but he didn't care. It was a perfect opportunity to get rid of her.

"It is hard evidence you won't get away this time," He coldly said with no hint of pity in his eyes.

"Please you know I am innocent. I didn't do it." He laughed at her.

"If it were up to me, I would have executed you but your beloved majesty didn't want you to die. I have to say seeing you like that made me realise how pathetic you are. Most high nobles truly her once the veil of power was removed"

Gilmour walked out of the dungeons and a few minutes later the emperor showed up. Even with all that resentment, he didn't look at her with hateful eyes but with pity. The guards opened the queen's cell and the emperor got in and the guards bought two chairs. They removed her shackles and she sat on the chair facing the emperor. 

"I never loved you there was only one woman in my life and that is mary," She seethed with anger and before she lost her temper he said, "Your daughter loves you and that is the only reason that I am letting you live. I am going to send you far away to the Acinus as a hostage. You will live the rest of your life there and as soon our daughter comes to age I will bring her here and get her married to a good man,"

"Arthur, I didn't do it. You can't do this to me!" She ignored everything he said and kept telling him that she was innocent. Arthur looked at her with disgust and got up from his chair.

"Gilmour was right I should have killed you but I am not going to look like a murderer in front of our daughter,""I am inno-"

"Quiet," The Emperor bellowed and Fiona jerked back in fear as the red mana oozed out of his body. He held her throat and pinned her against the wall and whispered in her ear, "I will rip off your tongue, if I hear you lie one more time," He threw her on the ground and strode out from the dungeons.


A Storm of Prophecy