Realms of Destiny
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After two straight hours of flying at top speed towards the Talespirits’ Sanctuary, the two Guardians finally landed at their destination. The Sanctuary, like the Death Keeper’s Gates, was surrounded by enchantments which made it look like nothing but an ordinary, albeit beautiful, eternal spring garden. At the center of the garden stood a little white building with beautiful parapets carved in white marbles. It resembled an annex of the Royal Palace, but only looks about as big as a mid-sized Cathedral.
This time, Sephiron was well aware that there were enchantments as everyone knows what happens at the Talespirits’ Sanctuary. This is where every Tale with Destiny had ever been rewritten, and thousands are in fact being written at this very moment. The Talespirits’ Sanctuary is one of the first construction of Sylrillia and had been in existence for as long as the race itself. It was said that for as long as Destiny existed a Sylrillian had entered other Reality Realms which have been blessed with a Destiny to help realize that destiny; as the truth progresses with the aid of the Sylrill, his talespirit would record that tale but without any record of the Sylrill’s involvement in it. The record would become a Tale, and therefore the ‘history’ of that Reality Realm.
There is an unusual bond between a Sylrill and their talespirit, and because of this, as long as a Sylrill is in another Reality, the talespirit will begin writing immediately. The talespirit represents their entire existence, and if a Sylrill’s talespirit were to be killed, all records of his existence will disappear. Therefore, should an enemy ever find the Talespirits’ Sanctuary and destroy it, all of the tales of universe’s of Realms that are in existence will be lost, and any future Realities will be deprived of its Destiny forever.
The two Guardians approached the white wooden doors which marked the entrance into the Sanctuary. Holding onto the knocker’s ring held between the teeth of a silver dragon, Grantig gave the knocker three swings. Hearing footsteps, he stepped back a few paces to stand beside Sephiron. A gap appeared on the wooden door, a panel was slid and a pair of eyes looked out at the two of them.
“Visiting hours are over good sirs.” Said a voice behind the door. Knowing that Grantig no longer had his seal, Sephiron quickly produced his. It had on it the crest of the Dragon Army, of which he belonged; that of the King, symbolizing his service to the Royal Palace; and Miraina’s, symbolizing his status as her guardian. Those three crests would’ve told anyone who he was. Only Miriana herself and her four guardians possessed her crest on their seal, and all of them treasured it dearly. Grantig more so than anyone else since he was the only one who earned his through blood, sweat, and years of study and service in the Magus Academy. Sephiron knew how much the seal meant to any of them, and yet Grantig had traded his for the map to come to this place without a second thought.
As he flashed his seal at the person behind the door Sephiron added. “In the name of the Princess, we are here on an urgent matter. Please let us in.” The panel closed and a loud clink followed by a clang could be heard and the doors creaked open. As it did so, the two were surprised to see a beautiful young Sylrill with flowing blue hair, dressed in the sanctuary staff’s white robes.
“Forgive my ignorance, I didn’t realize that we were expecting such important visitors. I’m quite new here so…”
“Never mind that, sister sancti, please lead us to the Writing Chamber right away, we haven’t much time to lose.” Interjected Grantig. Hearing his urgent tones, the Sancti moved faster.
“I’m only a trainee here, you will have to report your matter to the Sanctuary Keeper, only he has access to the Writing Chamber.” Explained the girl.
“Very well, please take us to the Keeper then.” Said Grantig. As they paced down the corridor, a very long, wide, and spacious corridor which seemed to have stretched at least twice the length of the building they could see from the outside, Sephiron was able to see how big and old yet well preserved this place actually was.
There was an atmosphere about this place, the timelessness of its wisdoms. The marbles seem to give off their own glow as well as the roof which, though opaque, was able to let the sunlight into the chamber. The ceiling was fashioned into a dome and is painted to resemble the daylight sky. As they arrived at the end of the corridor, the three found themselves stood in front of a statue cast in the shape of a tree. The Sancti placed her palm on an empty plaque and used her power on it. With that, the statue gave a soft glow and slid backwards to reveal a staircase which led underground.
The stairs were quite well-lit and didn’t give off a dungeon vibe at all. The three moved quickly and followed the stairs towards the light they could see at the end of the downward tunnel. When the group emerged, they found themselves in what looked very much like a large library with tomes of various coloured bindings and designs lining the walls. There were portals at certain intervals which led to other parts of the sanctuary, a library which held the history of all Realms the Sylrills of Destiny have ever visited.
On a raised pedestal, very close to the way they came in sat the librarian, also known as the Sanctuary Keeper. Floating by his head, a spherical fluffy being the size of an adult’s hand span, a round, glowing green bulb extending from the top of its head, and a quill pen attached to where a person’s ear would have been. It had short stubby feet but no arms, and seem to be focusing all its attention towards what the Keeper was reading.
Before their guide could lift her hand to point out the Sanctuary Keeper, Grantig had called forth his angel wings and leapt into the air towards the pedestal. Sephiron followed suit. The Grand Maester landed just a meter in front of the Keeper who looked up as he felt him approach. Recognizing Grantig, the man stood up and gave a short bow in greeting.
“Good afternoon, why, if it isn’t the young Grand Maester himself! And oh! You must be the Sky General Sephiron Dragonblight! To what do we owe this honourable visit?” The Sanctuary Keeper seemed quite cheery and genuinely excited to see the two of them. Though having never met them formally before, Miraina’s guardians are in fact public figures, and having spent days and night in the top secrecy of this place, the Sanctuary Keeper would have been quite happy for any new face to drop by. “My name is Quintas Kaellenia, it is a pleasure to meet you.” He held his hand to his heart gem which both Sephiron and Grantig did as well.
“Keeper, we are looking for a certain tale…” Sephiron began.
“That wouldn’t be a problem at all. I’ve got the catalogue right here.” He pulled out a massive tome.
“…that is being written as we speak. Is it possible for us to gain access to the Writing Chamber?” Grantig finished Sephiron’s sentence for him.
“A tale-in-writing shouldn’t be interrupted save for emergencies, is there a matter of the Sylrill of Destiny assigned to that tale?” asked the Keeper.
“You can say that, yes.” Said Grantig.
“Do you have the name of the tale you are seeking?” asked the Keeper. He seemed quite perplexed as to why his guests would want to enter the Writing Chamber, however, it had not been entirely unheard of for a Sylrill of Destiny to be recalled mid-mission.
“No.” both Grantig and Sephiron said as one.
“No? Do you have any idea how many tales are being written in the Writing Chamber at any one time?” exclaimed Quintas, forgetting his manners for an instant. He stopped to think for a moment before he asked them, “Do you know when the mission started then? That should be able to narrow down the search quite a bit.”
“Yes. It would have begun almost three days ago in the evening. If there is a way to track the tale by the Sylrill’s name…” said Grantig.
“Of course! Let me fetch the register from two days ago.” Quintas dove into his desk drawers.
“We are looking for Her Royal Highness Princess Miraina.” Said Sephiron. At this, the Sanctuary keeper straightened up so suddenly that he hit his head on the desk. The two guardians and the novice Sancti gave a wince.
“Ow! But the Princess hadn’t come in for the past month.” said the Keeper. “She hadn’t been on a mission recently, are you sure it is her that you’re looking for?”
“It is a long complicated story.” Said Sephiron.
“Forbidden magic was used and she and two other guardians were sent to another Reality. The only information we have now is that they’re alive.” Grantig summed up the story thus far for him.
“I’m afraid I won’t be able to find the tale if she hadn’t registered with me.” Said Quintas. “We better head to the Writing Chamber then.” He quickly stood up and paced down the rows of books towards the one portal which stood out from the rest. “Do you know if they’ve all been sent to the same Realm?”
“I would imagine so.” Said Grantig, although, he can’t say that he knows for sure.
“All we have to do is find a tale that is being written by three talespirits.” Concluded the Keeper.
By this time, their guide had gone off to tend to her other businesses, the three Sylrill entered the portal that led to the Writing Chamber. Sephiron, and even Grantig, stared in shock as they saw for the first time how many tales are in fact being written. The hall stretched out as far as their eyes can see, it is a straight corridor but lining the two side of the corridor are tiered benches with books, each representing a tale, and floating from one page to the other, recording the tales as they happen are the fluffy creatures which look like the one floating by the Sanctuary Keeper, known as talespirits. Sephiron almost collapsed in dismay.
“We’ll never find it in time!” he said, looking from one side to the other, all the way down the hall. The books are of various colours and each talespirit are unique in their own way. Together they all look like a collective hall of fluff, coloured baubles, and books. However, if one were to find a talespirit, even if they knew what it looked like, it would be about as simple as finding a specific diamond in a treasure vault.
“Oh yes we will.” Said Grantig. He grabbed his Grand Maester staff tightly and began chanting under his breath. Before any of them could react, Sephiron and Quintas could feel a brightly lit rune implanting itself on their forehead, it felt as though they’ve been connected by a communication spell. He could see the same rune on Grantig’s forehead. It did not end there however, as the Earth Guardian ended his chant, Sephiron had to rub his eyes as he thought he was having multiple vision, Grantig was multiplying! He looked then to the Sanctuary Keeper and realized that he too was multiplying. When the chanting stopped, where the three stood, there were now eight of each of them, though only the originals possessed the master rune.
“Now we split up and search. If your clone finds something, it should be able to communicate with you through the rune on your forehead. Give us a shout if you find them. We are looking for a tale with three talespirits working on it.”
After three hours of searching, Sephiron came to what he believed was the end of the massive Writing Chamber. Using all the power he possessed, with the aid of Grantig’s sense enhancing magic, they were still not able to find a tale with three talespirits. The three regrouped at the entrance of the chamber. Sephiron was annoyed, tired, and slightly stressed; Grantig looked quite unsure of himself for the first time; while the Sanctuary Keeper had a rather unexplainable worried look.
“What now?” asked Sephiron. “Are you sure they’re still alive?”
“The Death Keeper hadn’t said anything, so I would assume that they’re still alive yes.” Said Grantig. “Are you sure you’ve looked properly?”
“Yes, I have. I’ve even used Dragon sight magic. I’m sure I didn’t miss anything.” said Sephiron, he would’ve been insulted for Grantig to actually ask. As the head of the Sky Troops, his eyesight would’ve been the keenest among all the guardians. However, he knew why Grantig was asking that. They were so sure that they would find the Princess whereabouts here. If they aren’t here, then where were they?
“Is anything the matter Keeper?” asked Grantig, as he noticed the uneasiness of the Sanctuary Keeper.
“There could be another explanation.” Said Quintas. “The thing is, these tales do not represent all of the Reality Realms that are in existence at the moment.”
“There’s another Writing Chamber?” exclaimed Sephiron in disbelief, imagining another chamber just as big and packed as this one.
“No.” said the Keeper. “You see, the tales that are being written here are only those that have a Destiny.” Sephiron stared at him blankly, expecting him to explain what he meant, letting them know where they were supposed to find these other realms. However, Grantig had already caught on to what this meant.
“A Doomed Realm!” exclaimed the Grand Maester. “Are you saying that they’ve been sent to the Rathnorian’s jurisdiction, a Realm that’s bound to end?”
“There is a possibility…” said Quintas.
“How do we get there?” Grantig nearly screamed in the Keeper’s face. He was entering panic mode. Sephiron would have found this amusing had he not been panicking himself. “It’s not in Rathnoria is it?”
“The Rathnorians don’t keep tale records, they don’t have talespirits.” Explained the Keeper.
“Our only hope is to check the Great Tree. It is where the talespirits that are not writing reside, which would have been the last place Her Royal Highness’s talespirit had been before it began writing. Same goes for the other Guardians’. You see, talespirits have to write, a lifeline for the Sylrills in a foreign Reality. If the Princess is still alive, in another Reality, it means that her talespirit must be writing. However, if they’re in a Doomed Realm, we don’t know when this book will self-destruct.”
“How do we get to the Great Tree?” asked Grantig, still in a panic but somewhat toned down, knowing that there’s no Writing Chamber in some Rathnorian Talespirit Sanctuary equivalent which he had to try to infiltrate.
“It is beneath the library. There is a portal that leads to it back in the main library chamber.” Said Quintas.
“Lead the way/takes us there!” Shouted both Guardians. The Keeper immediately complied and paced down the hallway as fast as he could.
Quintas couldn’t help but think that this must have been the most eventful day in his entire career.