Chapter 1: Esidara
It has often been said that it is the small things that make the greatest change, that have the greatest effect on the world. Weather it is a small act of kindness, or a small act of evil, they both have great effects. Some say that it is only the big things that matter, not the little ones. But it is my opinion that the small things tend to have the greater importance, though they might never be recognised. Or maybe it is a series of small events that lead to a great thing, or a great thing that leads to a very small end, or many great things coming to nothing, or many small things coming to nothing. Whatever the case, the tale I am about to begin starts with a very small things. Now you may argue that there is no possible way that such a small thing as looking into a mirror can change the fate of the whole world, but it did. And perhaps you may say that there must have been other small things, and the looking into the mirror was just the final straw, but as far as my knowledge goes, it did indeed start with that small simple act. Racha, second in command to the King, looked into the mirror. His heart became proud at his beauty, for indeed there was none except the King who could rival him in beauty and grace. And as he looked into that mirror, his heart turned against the king. Why could he not be king? Certainly he should make a better king than the one who ruled now! And so his mind was swayed, and he began to look for ways to overthrow the king and take the throne.
Now, if you want to understand this story, I strongly recommend paying close attention to this chapter. It might not be the most exciting, or the most thrilling, but it is this chapter that gives birth to all the rest, so bear with me. The Island of Esidara has been called the most beautiful place of all. It is a paradise, with mountains, valleys, gardens, meadows, forests, glades, and glens. There is nothing evil or wrong in it. It is a place of tranquility and peace. No one who has been born there grows old. They remain in youthfulness forever, at the height of strength. They are tall and strong people, and it takes much to defeat them. But they are not warlike, or at least, they were not warlike. It is ruled by a good King, and a kind King. He governs the island out of a fortress, the likes of which this world has ever seen. A vast army is under his command, to many, they say, to be counted.
There is only one who lived on that island that was not born there. His name is Dmaa. No one, except the king, knew where he had come from. One day he wasn’t there, and the next he was. But it was apparent that he was not like the others. He was different, special. The king raised him as his own, and the two were inseparable. They did everything together, and seldom were they seen apart. But all this was the change when Racha decided to take over the kingdom.
He, being the cunning military leader that he was, was able to secretly persuade a third of the forces to come over to his side. And then was the harder task, working on Dmaa. But after hours and days of working on him, using lies and deceit, he was able to turn Dmaa against his king. Racha promised that Dmaa would rule the kingdom, intending only Dmaa’s demise. But Dmaa had never been lied to before. The king had only told him truth. A war raged in his mind. Never before had he known that someone could say something, and someone else could say exactly the opposite. And perhaps, but this I do not know for sure, he was a little reluctant when he joined Racha. But who can say? Perhaps he did regret it, and perhaps he did not.
Finally the day came when Racha decided to move openly against the king. And it is here that I will take you, and perhaps this part will be a little more exciting than the last paragraph had been.
A young officer rushed through the corridor, the sounds of shouting and screaming echoing through the hall. He dashed inside a large oak door with brass hinges, and slammed it behind him. The noise vanished, and the silence that followed was deafening. He leaned against the door, panting. The room was in a dome shape, with a glass opulent at the highest point. Moonlight streamed down, illuminating the large hickory desk that say directly beneath it. A large man with gold hair and deep, brown eyes say at the desk, charts and maps spread out before him. He was dressed in a long flowing robe with a silver breastplate over this and a long fur coat hanging down behind him. He looked up as the young officer entered the room. Then in a voice like sweet water falling over stones he asked, “Why Regnasem, what is it?”
“My king,” the young man gasped, “Racha is a traitor! Even now he besieges the castle walls, and a third of our men are with him! He says that he will make a better king!”
Slowly the king stood up. “It cannot be.“ He hung his head, sorrow racking his body.
“My king!” said Regnasem in a panicked voice, “you must hurry! He is threatening war! Talk to him, knock some sense into him!”
“You are right, Regnasem. I will talk to him.” He strode from the hall with the young officer at his heels. As he opened the door the sounds greeted him. It sounded as if the world had gone crazy! Every soldier had a least one comrade who had deserted him and become a traitor. They screamed at each other, bemoaning their betrayed trust. As the king stepped up on the wall silence fell. The moon shone down on him, glimmering off of his armor. “Racha!’ he called out into the dark, “is it true/ Have you betrayed us?”
Mad laughter rang out from the dark plain in front of the fortress. “I have! I have! And I will be king!”
“Racha, I give you this one chance, you and your men. Come back!”
“No!” he screamed, infuriated. “I will not!” His men screamed their agreement.
“Then,” said the king, grief etched in his voice, “I hear by banish you from Esidara! You must roam the world with no home and you may never return here.”
The mad laughter came again. “Know you, O king, that Dmaa fights with me?” his laughter shrieked out into the night.
The king sagged against the parapet, clenching it until his knuckles turned white. “Is it true, Dmaa?” asked in a weak voice.
“Yes. It is.” replied a small voice from out of the blackness.
‘Then you too must leave.” said the king, a sob catching in his throat. “I’m sorry.” He whispered.
With a wild cry of anguish Dmaa grabbed a large black horse that stood near him and swung aboard. He realized what he’d done. It was truly the king who loved him, not Racha. He yanked violently on the reins, turning the horse towards the sea. And inward force compelled him to get as far away from Esidara as possible, even though he wanted to stay with all his heart. The horse galloped on.
“Dmaa!” the king called after him, “Dmaa, wait!”
Dmaa turned his horse for a moment, looking back towards the castle and the picture of moonlight glinting off of the king’s armor while he leaned towards him. “Yes?” he called back.
“Dmaa, remember, I love you!”
With a sob Dmaa raised his hand to the king, the only father he had ever known, and rode off into the night., Racha’s laughter following him. He rode to the sea. A small vessel lay off the dock, he bounded on board and cut the ropes, letting the sails fill with wind and carry him out of the harbor, away from Racha, from the king, from Esidara. He looked back at the island. The sun was just rising behind the mountains and it shone off of the island. Dmaa set his face to the west, turning away from the only home he had ever known. Racha’s men were in boats by now too, following Dmaa. And as the last soldier stepped off of the dock the sun shone down and created a curtain of light. Racha stared at the light, then screaming, he ran to it, and tried to cut through with his sword, but to no avail. The curtain had dropped over Esidara.
From that day on nothing was the same. The whole world was upside down, it seemed. Racha pursued Dmaa, but to no avail. He cold not catch the young man. But Racha did not stop. He pursued him, always hoping to catch him, and thus earn his final revenge on the king. And the king? He wept over Dmaa, and resolved that someday, somehow, he would win him back. The forces were divided. A third followed Racha and two third the king. The king allowed his forces to leave the curtain and enter back in, but no one else was allowed in. No more would Esidara be the jewel of the seas. It would be forgotten by all except by those who once lived there. The curtain had indeed dropped.