Talana and her maidens were laughing and carefree as they entered one of the barren ice caves to collect the sacred ice stones (stones so cold that they radiated heat!), she felt at peace as the darkness surrounded her and her elven eyes allowed her to see all. True her intended was missing but it had been for only 2 days and because of a silly storm, Mulnar their chieftain worried. She had known Mulch since she was a child and had known him to be gone much longer then this only to return fine. He was a warrior now and she worried not for if he were in trouble she would have felt it. Best for the shela and her maidens to collect the ice stones needed to supply warmth to the other caves so that they to could survive this terrible blizzard.
"You look more beautiful then ever m'beauty..." Talana spun around quickly and drew her blade "Who goes there?" she was angry for allowing herself to be so caught up in her own thoughts that she allowed herself to be separated from her friends. In collecting the stones she had wandered quite deeply into the caves. "Show thyself I warn thee my blade be well sharpened and ready for the cutting." Her eyes scanned the darkness around her. "I remembered your being much more adept with spells then blades M'Love" Their in the darkness she spied a shadow move! Quickly the shela withdrew her blade. "An Ex Por!" The figure was frozen. "I am still very good with my words as you now see..." As Talana approached she could not believe her eyes "Shadow! Doth that be you? How DARE you come back here! Our chieftain banished you and promised death if ever you returned! "But I have returned sweet maiden and if you would be so kind as to release me from your charms I would be happy to explain why..." The shela approached the dark elf-like figure and memories of her youth return to her. Memories of a brash stranger that befriended her people and gained the trust of their Chieftain. The same stranger whose ways won her heart so long ago.
"I would be happy to release thee M'Lord..." With the back of her hand she struck the face of her former beloved.... Released from the paralyze spell and reeling from the blow the shadowed form fell to the ground. "Indeed this is not quiet the welcome I expected upon my return to your tender cares..." a roguish smile crossed his face. Her eyes flared with rage as he rose to his feet. "What type of greeting did thou expect? You betrayed my people and you deserted me!" she tried to stand her ground as he drew close to her. "But I have returned, am I not pleasing to thin eyes?" His smile was still that of a child's. "Besides you know the things that they said of me could not be true. Not after all that we have been through, all that we have shared." He could see the desire within her eyes as he moved closer. "What we had was another life and I was different shela. Besides even if your lies were truth it could matter not, I have chosen another to be my intended." As she turned away, she felt the cool of his hand caress her cheer. "Who doth this be? Mulch? A bold warrior he may be but he could never...." She turn to face him rage flared in her eyes. "Never WHAT!? Be honest? Be faithful? Be loving and caring? He is son to our chieftain and his honor is without question, and were it not for your base betrayal I am sure that he would have bested you that day in single combat! So what could he never be "M'Lord"? All the things you NEVER were? I think not!" fueled by her rage she tried to pull away from the elf that once laid claim to her heart, but he held her firm within her arms. "I am not saying any of those things I am saying that he could never be THIS." With that she felt a shadow kiss her lips. He felt her resist as he held her close and flooded her mind with telepathic memories of the bond they once shared. He smiled to himself wickedly as he felt her given to a love they once shared...
Talana awoke to the smell of smoke, the night had been one of passion and yet it felt like a dream nay a nightmare! Was it shadow that she had been with? Her memories were muddy, that smell was it smoke? How could such a smell travel so deeply within the caverns? She removed the bearskin that had been placed over her quickly dressed and ran outside. The sight that greeted her eyes was beyond her wildest imaginations or darkest fears! Her village lay in runes! Fire was everywhere elven bodies laid in the snow their throats slit the ancient mark of the assassin. Her people were slain as they slept, as SHE SLEPT!
"Talana..." she heard a faint voice whisper, it was her mother! She rushed over to her mother's side weeping over the fallen body. "Where were you child? Hurry your father.... A Shadow has fallen over us...." Her mother's body went limp in her arms... Tears of rage fell from her eyes as she rushed through the village seeking any signs of life. "Thou art insane thou shall pay dearly, upon my dying breath this I swear!" She followed the voice into the heart of town were she beheld a large cross upon it hung the badly beaten form of her Chieftain! Before him stood Shadow, among several others that were throwing stones at the form of the dying leader. "Whom shall carry out this curse o leader of the dead? Certainly none of you!" The forms laughed at the cruel joke. Talana's heart boiled as she began to whisper words of destruction to herself. "Your words harm me not for tis thine own end, the seeds that you sew." Shadows' eyes blazed with rage as he shoved his blade deeply into the heart of Mulnar the already badly wounded leader breathed a final breath as the grey elves eyes grew dark. "SHADOW!!!!!" Talana heard herself yell her hands completed weaving the intricate spell, which she had begun. The dark gathering, shadow among them all turned in the shelas' direction. She then notice that the shadow held something in his other hand it was a decapitated head! "Beloved I have been waiting for thee, my revenge among these foul creatures is complete and I have a gift for thee!" He held high the head of her father, as the group advanced upon her. "May you all burn with HEL!!!! Flam Kal Des Ylem!" the meteor swarm took all off guard as it struck them all down with fury! All except for shadow who at the last moment use one of his fellows to block the barrage! Still even he was badly wounded and shocked. "This can not be... you were but a novice when I left and the Grey's are warriors not mages.... How?" Shadow coward in the light of the breaking dawn, he crawled past the cross towards the edge of the glacier that supported it, a vain attempt to escape the wrath of his former love. "When you left I was a but a child, I am now, WAS high priestess. I know not why scum such as thee art allowed to be born. You have stolen my virtue, my parents and my people. You owe me a debt that is now due payment..." She slowly approached the huddled form that tried desperately to avoid her. "B-B-Beloved I pray THEE!!!" The shade pleaded as his veiled hand grasped for the dagger concealed within his tattered cloak. Her smile was one of vengeance "Kal Vas Flam " She whispered the flamestrike softly and watched the burning form descend to the desert that lay far below.
She stood emotionless for a moment, death and silence her only companions. She felt something stir deep within her. A tear fell from her eye as she felt the presence life within her. "Tis thine own end, the seeds that you sew." The last words of Mulnar her former chieftain echoed in her ears, as her hand fell to her stomach.
Her ears heard something of in the distance. Her eye search the snow filled mountains until they rested on the form of a lone elv wandering towards the ashes of her home. It was Mulch! Her heart filled with joy knowing that at least he had survived, it then sank as she realized that which he was returning home to. What would she say? How could she explain where she was when all around were dying? What would he do when he found out about the life that was now within her? There was only one thing left to do. "Vas Rel Por!" a shimmering gate opened and she stepped through it. Her shame was complete.
On a snowy day a lone warrior return to his people after being missing for days, Mulch return victorious eager to share his kill and the news of his adventures with his people and the Shela that he loved....
Four decades latter an elven mother sipped her tea as she watched her strong young elv play with the others. Today was the day that she would tell him the truth about his father for he had a right to know he was now past puberty and ready to understand such things. The lad approached his home in time to see his mother double over in pain, she laid dead at his feet the fowl brew spilt across the floor the cup shattered. The lad watched tearfully as the funeral pyre burn he remembered the words of the healer "A natural death no sign of fowl play. Why would anyone wish to murder you wife child? She was loved by all. We share your grief but we find nothing to verify your suspicions." But in his heart he knew that there had to be something more, his mother was a strong healthy vibrant woman.
He knew not how for he was now alone in the world with only the 100 gold pieces that he inherited but he would find out who was behind this if it was the last thing he did! Suddenly in the warmth of the fire he felt a cold chill, a shadow fell across his face, he felt a hand on his shoulder. "I heard the news and came as quickly as I could. Tis a sad day when a shela as great as Talana was fades from us...." The lad turned to face a man that looked elven but seemed different somehow. "I thank thee kind elder for your kind words, but might I ask who ye be?" It was growing dark and as the pyre grew dim mourners left tired from the days of celebration that went before. A storm could be heard brewing in the distance. "I am an old friend of your mothers we were once very close much closer then you may think. Tell me child what is your name?" The young man looked uneasy as he stared at the ground. "Sir my father was unknown to me and as such I have not his name nor a place to call my own, but proudly I bare the name Talon." Lighting flashed hiding the anger that glowed in the strangers' eyes. "You bear the name of your mothers house and a fine house it WAS indeed there is nothing to be ashamed of. I am Shadow lad and I shall take you in and train you, come with me you have much to learn and I shall teach you." The wind was howling as the two walked off the rain began to fall gently as a mothers tears...