Fantasy & Sci-Fi
Gelfling Hand Chapter 6
By Dawn McCall
In the tunnel below Tira searched for a way out. Groping
through the tunnel, Tira fell through a trap door in the ground. Landing hard
on his rear, the brave gelfling ran into a herd of nasters. As they attacked
all at once, Tira saw a narrow crack in the wall. Tira runs toward it with the
nasters hot on his heels. He slips through, but by escaping one danger he has
unwittingly challenged himself with another. On the ledge up against the wall
of the fire pit, Tira has to climb up. Not daring to look down or consider what
awaits him above, Tira cautiously, painstakingly begins the long, upward climb.
The handholds are small and slippery and it is not easy going for the exhausted
Meanwhile, just outside the castle, the mystics appear to
stop dead in their tracks. They began to chant of the recreation of the Great
Crystal. It is a sound of irresistible power; a sound that immobilizes the
nasters and allows the mystics to pass unchallenged into the castle of the
skel-ins, where they will meet their fate.
As Tira reaches the chamber where the huge crystal lingers
above the pit, he wonders how he could get onto it and hold on. Scora, while
hiding behind the curtain, sees her foster mother drained of life. Tira hears
the approaching skel-ins. He jumps to the balcony below and quickly hides
himself. Suddenly, Tira and Scora see each other and their hearts leap with
frantic joy. Unfortunately, Tira's and Scora's presence was also noticed by the
ritual master. In turn, he sends the nasters after them. Tira jumps for the
crystal, but the surface is so smooth that Tira drops the shard to hold on.
Scora flies down in time to grab the shard. Surrounded by skel-ins, one of them
seizes her free arm and threatens to kill her if she does not give the shard to
them. Tira, scared for Scora, screams, "Don't harm her! You can have the shard,
just leave her alone."
"No, Tira!" cried Scora. "Heal the crystal!!" Tossing the
shard up, it arcs its way toward Tira. A victory cry bursts from the throats of
the skel-ins as Scora is killed. The discordant shriek not only fills the
chamber, but penetrates the very depths of Tira's soul; reminding him of a
mission even greater than his love for Scora.
The din grows, amplified by the vibrations reaching Tira
from the core of the crystal itself; vibrations caused by the coalescing forces
of the Great Conjunction. Suddenly, Tira can't see; there is too much light.
Blindly he raises his arm and with all his might struggles to fulfill the
prophecy for which Scora had given her life. He stabs the shard into the Dark
The great crystal flashes and with the flash comes a high
pitched boom of thunderous intensity. The vibrations of the crystal throw Tira
off its surface. He falls through the dazzling air to land, senseless, beside
the motionless body of Scora. Tira does not see the encrusted filth of
centuries of skel-in's rule fall away to reveal the pure crystalline beauty of
the living stone of the mountain. He also does not see the mystics stride, like
a conquering army, into the quaking, brilliant chamber. Nor does he see the
skel-ins scuttle away from them in terror. All at once the nasters crumble to
the ground, the sod slaves are awakened from their trance-like state and the
incredible light of the Great Conjunction strikes the crystal causing its light
to splinter into eight brilliant beams which pierce through the mystics and
then draw the writhing skel-ins toward them.
Augra feels the rumbling and says, "What was sundered and
undone, shall be made whole, the two made one." Tira, feeling no elation, only
grief and loneliness he has never known before, was wrapped up in sorrow. He is
oblivious to the wondrous changes his courageous acts have brought about. Tira
and Augra stare, transfixed with wonder, as mystics and skel-ins fuse into
urskeks as in the past to be the two made one. Through his sobbing, Tira hears
a voice call to him.
we are urskeks! Long ago, in
our folly and ignorance, we almost destroyed the world! We entered the Great
Crystal, intending to purge ourselves of our imperfections within. Instead we
shattered the crystal and ourselves into mystics and skel-ins. The world we
sundered has been made whole again by your courage. You, gelfling, have freed
us from the chains of the world. We may now pass into the next world in our
original form. We make you one again. Hold her to you. She is part of you now
as we are all part of one another. You restored the true power of the crystal.
Now make your world in its light."
As he held her, Scora's eyes opened.
and a new beginning.
P.S. I hope you enjoyed the quest, as I did writing it.
Friends, an urskek we all are. There is a skel-in and mystic
in each of us. And from this stems imperfections and flaws of all kinds.
Nothing can cleanse these flaws. Magic can not. The magic is in going from day
to day knowing and forever striding ahead regardless. Magic is in the
continuing and reaching for dreams in the face of these adverse
THAT IS WHERE THE MAGIC SPRINGS FORTH
USE YOUR MAGIC