The Awakening, part 1

There was a time when the Elfin people roamed the world. There were stories of their battles with the dragons. Both sides were fierce and formidable. And deadly – most of all for us. Humans were only collateral damage to them. They would wipe out cities, even kingdoms, and not even realise or care about it. The Great Wars wrecked havoc on the land, destroying a lot of my kind. But not all of us. Some of us were gifted and could hold our own. Not nearly enough to pose any threat to either dragons or elfs. Only enough to help us survive. Pathetic, I know.

Luckily for us, though, they destroyed each other. At leatst according to the stories. I wouldn’t know if any of it is true – it supposedly happened more than thousand years ago, and the stories are nothing more than a way for our parents to scare us away from getting into trouble. Not that it’s ever stopped my step-brother from doing exactly what he wants.

“Let’s go back, Brian. You know we’re not allowed to go to the Dark Lake. Just once, please listen to me.” I’ve been at it for the past twenty minutes, but does he listen? No, instead of walking he now begins to run toward his goal. Damn it.

“Brian!” The little devil never does what I tell him to. I am supposed to watch over him and he always, always gets me into trouble. Last time I was whipped so hard I couldn’t lay on my back for nearly a month.

“Brian, please! Come…” But he has already reached the lake and I stop right behind him.

There is something strange about the Dark Lake. It is in the middle of the sacred forest, where only the priests are allowed to go, so not many people have seen it. But those who have, are never the same again. There are stories about it, all of them frightening and without a happy ending.

I thought I would fear this place, but to me it seems peaceful. The surface of the lake is completely still and I can see it reflecting everything perfectly, as if it was a mirror. Without thinking, I step closer and crouch beside the water’s edge. I am surprised to see that the water is very deep even near the land. I can’t see the bottom at all. Dark Lake is a very suitable name. Having forgotten Brian, I slowly lean closer and closer to the surface. I am careful not to touch the water though. Wouldn’t want to end up crazy or dead.

Not daring to speak out loud, I began whispering. “This is so…” I don’t even have time to react as I’m pushed into the water and I accidentally breathe in some of the water. I flounder helplessly and my loungs feel like they’re on fire. The water is ice cold against my skin and my vision turns black around the edges. Or maybe I’m just sinking farther down. I don’t know, and I find it increasingly difficult to care. I no longer know which way is up.  The last thing I see before my eyes close is a pair of huge red eyes glowing in the dark, staring at me unblinkingly.


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