This is an old tale that has been passed down before I, Helvaryn the History Keeper, arrived to the Land.  It tells how The Land Between began.  Though many deny the story, several believe it as truth.

The Beginning  by: Thanix

Time expands then shrinks back on its self. Thought carries on. Memories flash through the calming void like blades slashing at his mind sparking visions of times long past. Peace is all he feels. Nothing is all he sees. He’s mind trips and tangles through random moments in time. The darkness is his peace, his rest, his final haven... Then something happens that hasn’t happened in a eon he’s sure. He feels something. Not a memory of touch, or emotion....He actually feels something. It’s a distinct feeling he’s felt many times over he’s long years. It’s the feel of a beginning. He feels air running over skin, a weight upon his shoulders...For a moment his wandering mind freezes. He speaks out loud without knowing “shoulders?”....... He catches the sound of his own voice in his sounds like the grating of giant stones. His eyes open, light floods in on his vision.

“What?”... it comes as a whisper as his thoughts are dashed aside by the view before him. Green fields stretch out rising into a forest. The sun hanging high in the perfect blue sky casts its glory onto the lush, thick grass. He smells pine, cold winds blown from on high, and a fawn nearby. He holds his hands up, to his ever growing amazement and dismay they are there before him in flesh. They look rough and hardened. They look like the hands of a warrior callused and used. Old steel bracers wrap his wrists tight. The tarnished metal is covered in a hundred tiny nicks and cuts. Each one flashes a forgotten moment through his mind. His head swims as his feet stagger beneath him. A moment of concentration is all he needs to right himself. His hands flex the muscles in his forearms strain the leather straps that bind them. He feels weak, he feels new, he feels like a man. His grey eyes lift up as he gazes out into this fresh world.

A shock hits him and runs up his body. Without seeing, without hearing, with out smelling he knows he’s not alone. He’s never alone. He’s never been alone. The shadow is always there. “What did you do?” the man says. Darkness slowly moves along the grassy field it appears as a misplaced shadow thrown recklessly upon the field. The shadow moves along the blades of grass creeping closer to the man. A whisper of a voice comes from the shadow... “Me?...not me....them....” The shadow stretches into the air twisting and turning till finally it takes the shape of a man. A man of shade and darkness. Not made of the darkness almost as if the light avoided him or the shade was drawn to him He points out. The man follows the wavering darkness that is his companion’s hand to the horizon. Two figures stand there. The man knows them. Not in the way that one man knows another, but in a way that goes beyond simple recognition or friendship. These two figures are him, and at the same time are not him. Their mere presence floods him with emotion. He blinks. Just one flutter of his still adjusting eyes. A blink is all they need to cross the distance to him past his shadowy companion. They appear as a man in a deep grey robes that hangs off his solid frame, and a woman dressed in a long gown of spun gold. They look as a man and woman though in his mind he knows they are truly neither. They look human in form but once again they are not. They are whatever they are, and whatever they will be. “Hail my knight” the woman says. The man to her right laughs. “Knight indeed. Welcome Bramd.”

Bramd.....Bramd....that name...why? His thoughts tumble. Bramd’s features bunch as in deep thought, then he nods. “To what do I owe the honor m’lady and m’lord?” The lady speaks crisply her voice the sound of tiny bells “To do what you were meant to do. To guard always the balance, to safe guard the game.” Bramd’s hands go to his sides in fists. Anger creeps into his face. “I’ve done my duty to you m’lady. I did what you asked of me those years ago. I’ve earned my rest.” His jaw is tight. She smiles“You have done well my gallant knight beyond my hopes. But the end is near and I need thee to hold the scales once more in your hands.” Bramd looks over at the man in grey next to her “What does she mean the end is near?” The man in grey sighs. “Bramd the game comes to a close here. This is the last of it.” His thick robes fall back as his hand waves around displaying the lands before them. “The greatest of care has been made for this place. We have toiled and worked for this the same as you have Bramd. You must have known it wasn’t over yet. The pieces are in play and it is out of our hands now. You must take up your post. You must do that which you were born to do.” The man in grey places a hand upon Bramd’s shoulder. “We are counting on thee my old friend. Our gifts will be coming to this place soon only you can keep them in balance.”... Bramd unclenches. He speaks slowly trying to keep his voice calm “Your gifts? Aryel is coming?... Here?” The golden lady laughs, it’s a laugh that would melt a normal man’s heart. “Yes my knight our daughter is on her way to these lands. Her brother follows closely behind her. What say you Lawbringer? Does thy old bones still have the strength to guard these lands?” A smile creeps over her face. Bramd drops slowly to a knee. What else can he do. His eyes raise to the pair. “Once more I will take up thy charge and guard these gifts till the end of all ends.” The pair join hands, and as they do a soft light pulses from them. With slow gracefulness they bring them to lay upon his brow. They speak as one, their combined voices cause the land to shake and tremble. Birds fly from the trees in the woods far way.

“The Guardian is set. Let the mountains know him, let the earth support him, let the waves of the seas part before him, let the air guide him. Let none stand in his way. The mark is placed the seals are made the end is near.” Their voices raise higher “Let the cycle begin again!”

All becomes quite and still. Slowly their joined hands raise away from his brow. They raise to the sky and then dip back down in a graceful arc. At the end of which they are holding something. Bramd’s eyes sting with tears he didn’t realize he shed. He blinks them away as he stands. With great care the two put seven small discs into his hands each crafted out of some unknown material that shins like the sun. He nods once more as he accepts his charge. The couple smile at him warmly.

“Go now my brave and true knight. Take up watch and waver not in thy duty. Go now and roam your new home Guardian. Time now we must speak alone with thy shadow.”

With the mention of the shadow Bramd looks to the forgotten shade. “I will see thee again darkness.” he calls “For I am and will be the EVER!” with the last said he turns and begins his walk toward the horizon the tiny discs still clutched tight in his hands. A smile almost appears behind the dark and shaded face staring at his back...a whisper escapes it “as am I. As am I”

Scribed as told by Master Bard
Preston Mathys MacCabee

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