The Story of Age of Wonders II
The Age of Men sprang upon the world in a way that none of the prophets expected, least of all the men. What should have been a peaceful transition between the caretaker Elves and the newborn Humans turned into an epoch of sorrow.
I was born in this age and, because of the measures taken to save all mankind, I will cease in an age when men cease.
But I fear I get ahead of myself.
I am Merlin, and I was not born when the calamities began. I lived in a remote area, far from the Valley of Wonders. No, the Humans first came from their Garden and took their place upon the Blessed Continent where the Wizard-King Inioch reigned.My forefathers, little more than barbarians when compared with the refined Elves, drove his people from that Valley and slew Inioch.
They knew nothing of Elves. Immortals. Even in death Elves haunted the Humans. Without the balance imposed by Inioch, hordes of wicked creatures gathered and the fruit of human freedom was more war.
The son of Inioch and his daughter gathered against us. Meandor, willing to cause the extinction of Humanity by any means, unleashed a force of undead led by the dead king, Inioch. Julia gathered the forces of light, called Keepers, and stood against a tide of darkness.
Such apocalyptic battles were prelude to the destruction that would follow.
I was born centuries later, but my people still talked of the mischief caused by Meandor and the undying Inioch. Rumors spread about godlike beings dwelling in ivory towers, calling the powers of creation to fight for themselves. Cults dedicated to these beings enticed many with strange promises of conquest and prosperity.
Then the sky rained debris. The earth churned and swallowed my people. Queen Julia tried to maintain balance, but her Keepers were defenseless against this new magic. In a time when Magic diminished, it batted the people like a monstrous storm. I was among the few who survived. We fled from settlement to settlement, only to find smoldering heaps of stone. In order to survive, many of my own people sought protection under the shadow of these Wizard Towers. Those who refused were hunted by the very elements of nature.
My men boarded our air galley on a clear evening. I looked over the sea, scanning the skies for an island that once hosted human settlers, but the island was no more.
The skies rippled with lightning. Clouds whirled and from their billows emerged a formation of red dragons. They destroyed my ship, and I fell overboard.
That was when Gabriel first reached out to me....
"Wake my honorable friend. I am called Gabriel. You have come to me during a time of tremendous unrest, for which I am grateful. I have guided your soul back from the doors of Death, so that you may ascend to your rightful place in this world. You are in the land of Evermore, where the Circle of Wizards has governed the spheres of magic, all magic, for thousands of years.
Yet these are terrible times. For reasons I cannot ascertain, the seats of Air, Fire, Earth, Water, Life, and Death have turned against one another, leaving the Circle and causing the cataclysms that have diseased your world. You have come to me in my greatest hour of need, for I must not leave Evermore unguarded. The task of solving this riddle I pass on to you, my young apprentice. I will set you upon the path of magic, granting you the power to reunite the Circle and to prevent the destruction of your world. Perhaps, one day, you may even replace me on the Wizard's Throne. Rise young Merlin, your quest begins here!"
That was when my life would begin and when it endedall in one moment, during the Age of Wonders.
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