Part 1-Prologue-Ch 3-Th Prophecy

The breath came short in Aloetta's lungs. Uncovering her face, she let out a deep sigh of relief. She poked the pile next to her, and was enveloped in her mother's secure hug. Peels of nervous laughter rang out from between the two of them as the realization of their close encounter began to fully sink in.

"Hmm, don't you have a grandmother around here someplace?" Everyn asked gently.

"Here." The voice came from directly behind them. Alet turned, startled, and came face to face with the woman in question.

"Grandmother," she began, "how did-how did you-never mind." she stuttered, then tightly embraced the elderly woman.

Shrugging off the questioning looks being tossed her way, she stated, as if nothing had happened, "Well now, I ought to be finishing my story hmm?"

"Huh? What?" Alet asked. She had completely forgotten and was shocked at how little her grandmother seemed to care about their recent ordeal. "Oh, yes-yes of course. Please…um…continue." she said slowly, recovering.

"Well, anyway, Emberaun was a great leader. Born for it if you ask me. He was like something…different. Almost like an angel dropped down to become one with man. That link to righteousness, you understand. He showed us the right way to go about things. He was always wise and made the right decisions. Somehow, though no other ruler ever managed it, he managed to hold his people together all his life. It was almost as if, he cast…oh, I don't know….a spell maybe on everyone in his presence. Emberaun wasn't bound to the earth by guilt or flaw. There was nothing there with which to chain him! Now, I can't honestly say that he was perfect, or not absolutely so, but there was something about him…something that separated him from the rest of the world. No one ever fought for power, no fighting, nothing. Everything was great. Now, some say that Emberaun was simply an extremely powerful mage. And there was one extraordinary thing that could of explained all of these things-"

A high pitched whine broke the mood and Nethaenial began to cry incessantly.

"Aww, come now Thaen, hushhhh." Alet began to rock the babe.

"Oh, dear, his sleeping draught must have worn off. Come now my Thaen, shhh that's it, come here to Momma." Everyn cooed. Taking the child into her arms and pressing his head to her chest, she bounced him up and down until the crying ceased and the child began to slumber. Then she crushed a richly scented leaf and waved it under his tiny nose to ensure that his sleep would remain peaceful and lasting until the coast was clear of dangers.

"So, as I said, he ruled with something great. As you know, each elemental magic is tied in with it's own spirit. Well Emberaun, after consulting the Mighty Spirits, created these four Elemental Wonders. A scholar, perhaps, might call them his inventions or making, but in truth, he found them all inside himself. Made them of his own purehearted being. I suppose that's what he was, just a spirit. They were the tools of nature, in truth. There were….hmm….let's see…..there was the Windstone, it was the wonder of wind and weather. It could control the forces of the rain and the mighty churning breezes; call down the hail and the snow; provide shade from the clouds, or warmth from the sum overhead." The elderly woman's eyes glazed with a sort of absolute bliss as she was caught in the awe of her reminisce.

"Then, there was the Living Staff. It was probably the most celebrated of items, because of the ultimate gift it bestowed on those who came in contact with it. Any being that was lifeless for one day and no more, could be restored to health. But, it had no healing powers, only life-giving ones. It only worked on those whose life had fled entirely. But, if they were out for too long, it's powers were worthless. Only those who had not yet gone to the Otherworld could be revived. This process usually took about one day's time; so that was all the time the staff's holder had. Now, one of the less wondrous of them was called the Sword of Flame. It is still a bit mysterious to most of us, but there are rumors that it's powers could be great, whether for harm or for good. Hmm, I-yes, I believe that it had the ability to commit fatal injury to those struck by it, and, being a property of the dragons, it's edge was not only unethically sharp, but burning with extreme heat. Only when in it's designated scabbard did it settle so as not to burn it's carrier. And, of course, I'm sure it had other great traits, but I only know of a few of them. Now, I'm almost certain that there was a fourth item…" She paused to think before continuing, "Yes, yes there must have been. Because there are four different element…..well, There is one, of this I am certain. But strangely, it was the most mysterious of the lot. Not much was heard of it, and I doubt that anyone knows of it's whereabouts. But, I'm absolutely positive that it does indeed exist. And, possibly, it could be the greatest of them all."

"Grandmother, one thing I don't understand, what happened to them when Emberaun's rule ended? And why has no one gone searching for the items?"

"Ah, now that's quite a tale to tell." Everyn cut in with a smile. "You see, the Spirits convinced him, although he was almost to modest to listen, that other humans were not the same. That he was different. That, if others were given such ultimate power, they would be overcome with greed. Even the best of them. They would be overcome with the hunger for more. So, on the Spirits' advice, he decided to get rid of the items. He refused to destroy them though, because he strongly believed that one day, there would be someone who could straighten out the land. They would be just as powerful as he was, but at the same time, possibly even wiser and greater than he. So he gave each item to an immortal animal with a connection to the Wonder and a use for it. For instance, the Windstone was given to the faeries, who spend much of their time in flight, and the Sword of Flame was given to the head Dragocian. There are so few of them now…" she shook her head before continuing, "The Living staff was presented to the centaurs, I'm almost sure of it. Now the Wonder related to the waters….hmm, still it remains mysterious, but I can't think of a creature with immortality or human intelligence for him to give it to! Oh, well, I suppose he found something that would care for it, what ever it is. But anyway, the reason no one ever went to look for them was simply because it was too difficult! You'd be amazed at how lazy people can be! But even if someone were to find the items, they could only be handled by a Vienz Zauberer and you know how rare those are. Most of them can't be spared to begin with. Their powers are needed elsewhere. But…" she stopped all of a sudden as if taking time to gather her memories.

"But what?!" Aloetta went nearly mad with suspense. "Don't get too excited! It was prophesized that a decsendent of Emberaun would rise to take his place. I believe it went something like this:

Without thy spell in place by thee,

calm Treblan grows wild and free.

Alone, Ashtohlyn shall divide

when many moons have passed thee by.

The chosen one can only save

This realm in time of danger grave.

She comes with pride and head held high.

Blazing are her silver eyes.

With an army of magic and creatures she comes,

To end the fighting and silence the drums.

Be wise and keep the child well cared,

Or thy realm forever teared.

She will come, with her grandfather's eyes.

The greatest queen of Ashtohlyn soon shall rise."

As she spoke, Everyn became entirely swept up by her recital, but she quickly shook off the look. "Oh, but come now child, look at me! You need your rest, and so does your grandmother!" And so, settling her daughter's head in the circle of her arms, she dozed from sheer exhaustion, the days events, and the illness that tugged so forcefully on her health and energy stores. Aloet, still puzzling the mystifying prophecy, feel into a sort of daydream which eventually resulted in sound sleeping. However, for her grandmother, sleep simply would not come. Hearing that story and prophecy had awakened thoughts in her that she had strived to push away and forget about completely. She replayed, line by line, the whole thing in her mind. All the signs were there. Her rising suspicions and fears were being fed constantly by the information sitting right in front of her face. She wanted to believe it, but simply couldn't. But how could it not be true? Her mind fought to be heard. Her heart's argument was more solid though. It simply could not be true. Aloetta Haycien was not going to be the future queen of Ashtohlyn.

A/N- Hello all! I apologize for this being such a short chapter, but I rather like the ending, didn't you? Anyway, a nother (longer) one will be following within the week. No going back this time I swear! *Raises three fingers in the girl scout promise symbol* This chapter marks a major change of perspective and the following chapter well go in depth as to why Aloet's grandmother feels this way. Also, in the next two or three chapters, (im unsure which) a MAJOR event will occur marking the end of Part 1, my endless prologue. Cheers to all who reviewed! Your encouragment keeps this story flowing! And all of you, whose patience must run so deep to bear with my neglected, terribly belated updates. Chao!