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Chapter 1
Interlude 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4


     Page 13    

The cloaked figure walked down the arena hill and up the summit to the Old Fortress.  He walked between the east and southeast points of its star shape that lead to what once was the Snake Gate or Shu-mun in the ancient tongue.  The walls closed in before him on both sides; their once smooth four-story high walls dotted with narrow slits for windows no longer held the threat of detection that they did in their former years.  Then they were smooth and showed unblemished strength.  Now they were half crumbled with decay.  They once held back armies and later, after the Arcathian civilization had perished, they held back looters with just the menace of their empty gaze, but the days of looting had long since passed.  The looters had picked the Old Fortress clean of any treasure no matter how broken or quaint and in the place of treasure grew something more elusive in recent years, a force that kept even the heartiest adventurer out.  Not even looters would venture into this place now, because legend, a force stronger than crumbled walls or forsaken battlements, held off the inquisitive treasure seeker.  These legends concerned a clan of mage-warriors called Firesmyths that once guided this planetís politics with a gentle but firm hand.  It was said that the Firesmyths were born six millennia ago on another world and that they witnessed the birth of civilization on Epi.  And since Epi was now a world where any technology greater than the bow and arrow or catapult was forbidden, stories told of the Firesmyths and their living machines held children in awe. 

Neither the specter of these walls nor legends stopped the cloaked man.  As he reached the Snake Gate, he put his hand into his cloak and withdrew a cylinder.  With a word of command the cylinder emitted a brilliant beam of white light.  He resumed his walk passing through the gate and stepping over the remnants of the large titanium doors -- the use and even name of titanium had long been forgotten.  He crossed the wide-open courtyard and entered the great hall of the Old Fortress, navigating his way effortlessly through the passages as if he knew them intimately.  He stopped occasionally, stooping to look at the debris discarded by looters.  He made his way down several flights of stairs into what appeared to 

Scroll 1: History's Mirror                                                                                    Chapter 1: Treasures from the Past


Copyright 2001 by Darrell A. Newton, All Rights Reserved.
For problems or questions regarding this web contact me [ Email].
Last updated: December 10, 2001.

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