best selling author, sci-fantasy, Spiritual

The Wizards of Pangea – The Sorcerer Chronicles

He had spent his youth training with the Wizard. He had never known anyone who had the power to manipulate time, weather, the elements, and beasts of all sorts. He was the one who stood between the people of Pangea, and the dark forces the Mages wielded to subdue and enslave the people. He was known as Bartok the Blue, and his hooded cloak with its gold and white runes embroidered into the cuffs, hem, and borders could ward off almost any evil that the Mages could conjure and send against him.
His life was centered on keeping the evil forces at bay. Bartok was almost seven-hundred and fifty years old. He came from the line of Seth, and the Mages were the descendants of Cain. There were giants in the land, Elves, Dwarves, Mages, Sorcerers, and Necromancers. Of the lot, he alone with his apprentice and helper, Sarzon, stood against the tide of demon hordes, evil magical beasts, Balrogs, Goblins, and Warlocks. It had been at least two hundred years since he had seen an Elvin Wizard or Sorcerer, and the Dwarves had no magic, but possessed incredible skill with anything requiring blacksmithing, the making of objects that could be imbued with power, and weapons.
The Elves had gone into the forests to hide from the Mages, Warlocks, and Necromancers. He knew that this was going to be a trying quest, he needed allies, weapons, and transportation. Transportation for him and Sarzon was the easy part, he summoned two of the Griffons he knew. They would accommodate them at least to the Elvin lands. That’s where they were headed. He needed to find Delvina, and Trandor, the two Elves he knew to be a Sorceress and a Sorcerer, and had trained with him in the ways of the light. To stand against the dark powers and send the evil beasts and demon hordes into the depths hell and lock them there until the time for their judgement came.
He and Sarzon had gotten the gear they needed, and mounted the Griffins who had come, and left for Benelvin, the name the Elves called their home. They had gone at least one-thousand miles towards the dense forests of beech, cedar, chestnut, oak, pine, and willow. The Elves had their halls and homes there. They had learned to manipulate the growing plants, and they formed living houses, walkways in the trees, and in their realm, was nothing but peace. Time seemed to slow there, and they paid homage to the God of Creation, this was the world he needed to go to, he was tired from the fight, and he needed rest and to regain his strength.
Sarzon was almost fully trained and taking him to Benelvin was the final thing needed to complete his training. He needed to understand the life-force that surrounded everything, and how they could be manipulated for good or evil. He would be a powerful Sorcerer, but he still must face the Cave; all sorcerers had to go into the Cave, there they would meet the darkness face to face, and either choose to follow the light, or become consumed with evil. He felt in his heart that Sarzon would accept the light, and he would have an ally after being alone or training Sarzon for over one-hundred and fifty years.
As they made their way to Benelvin, they crossed the Kingdom of Menandor, he was a human warrior, was the best swordsman he had ever known. He protected his borders from any invaders, but still needed the help that could come through Magic. The demon hordes that were in the south had come on many occasions trying to invade Menandor’s realm. They had brought Balrogs, Goblins, and Warlocks against him, as well as several Dark Mages, and the Black Necromancer who commanded them. He was known as Morcandon the Black, and he and Bartok had dueled a Wizards duel on several occasions each ending in a stalemate. The next time they met, it would be the last time for one of them. They were both powerful, Morcandon used all the Dark Magic he could find, and would bring that against the forces of Light, and those who had become the wielders of the Magic of Light.
Bartok and Sarzon had been travelling for several days when they came to the edge of Benelvin, and the Griffins landed so they could begin their journey into the land of the Elves on foot. Bartok thanked the Griffins for getting them to Benelvin and blessed them before they went their own way. Bartok knew it was important to keep the alliances he had made over the years strong, and whenever he was aided in any way, he would always bless them for their aid, and let them leave in peace.
The Elves had cast Protection Spells over their land and unless you knew the proper response, the Spells would prevent you from entering. He had helped them create the Spells and was one of the few who were privileged to have free access past the border. This was the most important trip he had made here in two centuries, he had brought an Apprentice, fully trained, and capable user of the Magic of Light, and was ready for the trials. Within the borders of Benelvin, was the only place in the North of Pangea where Dark Magic had an opening. It was located in a cave, and it was called the Well of Souls. All workers of Magic who lived in the north had to pass through the well, and choose their path.
They had traveled for two days into Benelvin, and Sarzon asked him “Why haven’t we seen any elves?”, Bartok smiled and replied “They have been following us since we entered their realm.” Sarzon had a confused look on his face, and Bartok pointed up. Sarzon realized that the Elves were in the canopy of the forest above them and watched them from the moment the Griffins had left and they entered the Realm of Elves. As he looked up, he saw an elf, high up in one of the trees, he winked at him, and smiled. Sarzon smiled back, and waved.
The Elf dropped to the ground and bowing in a gesture of respect to Bartok, he faced Sarzon and said “I am Lazolon, Head Ranger, and Greeter to all who pass the gate.” Sarzon realizing how formal that greeting was, rose, bowed low, with a sweeping gesture of his arm, and introduced himself “I am Sarzon, Apprentice to Bartok the Blue, on the errand of great importance, to become a Sorcerer and Wizard, a worker of the Magic of Light.” Lazolon smiled. Bartok had taught this one well, and he would pass through the Well of Souls and be reborn.
Lazolon would be their guide from here to the Temple of Light, where all the Elvin Wizards and Sorcerers gathered to meet. Bartok had been here many times, had spoken to the Council of Elders, and had been an elder here before leaving to take the battle The Dark Mages and Morcandon the Black, the Necromancer who led them. He had stood against them for almost five-hundred years, mostly alone, and his allies had either been killed, or came to Benelvin, or were with the Dwarves in Bodenheim. The Dwarves couldn’t manipulate magic, but they could be controlled by it, and part of the Dark Forces Were Dwarves, Men, and Elves who had become so evil that they were changed by Morcandon into the demon hoard. They could use magic, except the dwarves, and could wield weapons of destruction that were imbued with Dark Magic. A danger to them all.
The Council of Elders was made up of four Elvin Wizards, four Human Wizards, and four Dwarves who made implements of Magic, but couldn’t use them, they provided knowledge and wisdom to the Council, which was led by Bartok’s friend and Ally Delvina the White. Delvina had been with him since the day that Morcandon had ventured south and returned as Morcandon the Necromancer. He had been seduced by the Dark Magic in the Southern Land’s and became the leader of all the Dark Mages. He had been a powerful user of the Magic of Light, equal to Bartok the Blue, the most powerful Sorcerer and Wizard of all. Morcandon had been jealous of his gifts and had wanted his level of power for himself not realizing the in the Magic of Light, that kind of power came not from desire or want for fame and glory, but from protecting others from the Darkness. He had been trained by Bartok, and was his one failure.
Now, before any apprentice could enter the Well of Souls, it was required for them to be presented before the Council, tested and looked at, by all of them, before gaining permission to begin the Trials and receive full rank and membership into the Order of Light. No Wizard or Sorcerer since Morcandon had switched sides, and it was because of the way they were granted their place now that had prevented the chaos. If an Apprentice failed the trials and weren’t allowed to enter the Order, they usually found their war to Morcandon who would win them over and turn them into a Dark Mage. They weren’t as powerful as a Wizard or Sorcerer, but they could wield enough power to harm others and were a constant concern for the Council.
One of the things that Bartok had done when stepping down from the Council and Delvina took his place, was to help them put up the barrier, and all of the Order with the exception of Bartok, stayed within the Borders of Benelvin. Bartok had taken upon himself the task of finding candidates, training them, and bringing them here to be tested. Once they passed the Trials, they would remain here working Magic and protecting the Northern Lands from Morcandon and the Dark Mages. It had been a century since the last battle, and it took Morcandon time to replenish his ranks and for his power to be restored.
Now had come the time for him to present Sarzon to the Council, and for him to begin the Trials, which culminated in the entrance to the Well of Souls. They would be testing his ability to manipulate Magic, conjure spells, heal bodies, his knowledge of Magic, his ability to use the magically imbued weapons of the Order, and in the end, he would receive his wand and Cloak, and would join their ranks. That was how it usually proceeded, but this time, Bartok intended to take Sarzon back with him. He was very powerful, the most powerful Apprentice he had ever trained, even more so than Morcandon.
his knowledge of Magic, his ability to use the magically imbued weapons of the Order, and in the end, he would receive his wand and Cloak, and would join their ranks. That was how it usually proceeded, but this time, Bartok intended to take Sarzon back with him. He was very powerful, the most powerful Apprentice he had ever trained, even more so than Morcandon.
His spirit was different though, different than any Apprentice he had ever met, his own or another’s, he wanted to help people, he could already manipulate Magic, and even if he didn’t go beyond the trials, he would make a formidable White Mage. He should be a Wizard, join their ranks, and be allowed to return with him beyond Benelvin. He was ready for the Trials and all that remained was to pass them and enter the Well of Souls.
Delvina would read him, check to see if he had the seeds of Darkness that would send him South, but he had never seen the slightest indication of any Darkness within him. He was looking forward to seeing his old friends and allies, they had held things together for so long now and it would be nice to see them, and to get their approval to take Sarzon with him. Delvina would agree, he knew that Trandor and the other Elves and Humans would, it was going to be the dwarves who could stop it, he needed ten of the twelve to agree, or if they were evenly divided, the decision would fall to Delvina.
He had never asked to take one of his Apprentices with him since the day that Morcandon changed sides. This time he would not repeat the mistake he made of sending Morcandon into the Dark Lands, and he regretted that decision every day. He had been hurt deeply by Morcandon and his wounds had taken years to heal, he stayed in Benelvin for twenty years after the last confrontation, and he was sure that Morcandon had to recuperate and heal as well, it had been the most violent of their confrontations, and they had done everything short of killing each Delvina.
He had never asked to take one of his Apprentices with him since the day that Morcandon changed sides. This time he would not repeat the mistake he made of sending Morcandon into the Dark Lands, and he regretted that decision every day. He had been hurt deeply by Morcandon and his wounds had taken years to heal, he stayed in Benelvin for twenty years after the last confrontation, and he was sure that Morcandon had to recuperate and heal as well, it had been the most violent of their confrontations, and they had done everything short of killing each other.
Sarzon was having a lengthy conversation with Lazolon, he wanted to know everything, he was excited to see the homes they grew, and how they tended the plants and animals in their realm. He was in total wonderment, everything he saw spoke of Magic. It could be felt everywhere, almost raising the fine hair on his arms and his scalp was tingling. The only time he had felt this was when he was doing certain spells to help the plants regrow when the Dark Mages had attacked and poisoned the plants with Dark Magic. He knew that Bartok intended to take him back with him, but to do that, he had to pass the Trials, and then pass through the Well of Souls. He had studied everything Bartok had about what was to come, in preparation for this, and he must pass it. He must. Everything depended on it.
He was orphaned at ten years old by Dark Mages who had attacked the hamlet they lived in. Bartok the Blue came, but he got their late. The Mages had done the deed, and all but him were dead. Bartok took him under his wing, and when he started showing talent, he trained him as his apprentice, six years later, he returned to the ruins of the hamlet, used the Magic he had already learned, and healed the land, the ruins had melted into the ground, and the plants came back. He had to do special spells to heal and restore the plants, they had been affected by the Dark Magic and had begun to turn into evil versions of what they had been. He had to work the Magic for hours before being able to restore the valley, but he had done it. Bartok had been impressed by the skill he displayed, and ten years later, they began their journey here.
Bartok lived far to the north, and it had taken them just over a year to get to edge of Benelvin. They had been travelling to meet with the Council for over a week and he was beginning to think that they would be on the Elvin Road for a month, when Lazolon told them they would be at Fair Haven, the next day. So, they do have a city or something like one, he had thought to himself and was surprised when Lazolon said “Of course we have a city, we have four of them actually, but the Council resides and meets in Fair Haven. The other cities are Bright Haven, that is where the Elvin Wizards reside, Green Haven, that is where the Dwarves live, and then there is Thunder Haven, that is where the Human Wizards live. All within a week’s journey of each other by horse, or a day’s journey on wings.
He was amazed when Lazolon had responded to his thoughts, he had not known that his thoughts could be read, he turned to Bartok and before he could speak, Bartok told him that in Benelvin, where Magic is strong, all beings who manipulate Magic have the ability to hear one’s thoughts. It is best that if you are going to be here and pass the trials, you should learn to shield your thoughts. You should be able to master the skill before we reach Fair Haven.
Lazolon agreed with Bartok, one thing that would absolutely cause him trouble here or when he came against a Dark Mage or Morcandon the Black, was his thought could be used against him, if he couldn’t shield, he wouldn’t be able to journey outside of Benelvin. That inspired him to learn the technique, he wanted more than anything to work with Bartok in the outside realms.
Bartok allowed the elf to teach him the technique, Elves thought differently than humans and dwarves, and if anyone was capable of teaching the technique, it was an Elf. Lazolon was one of the High Elves, an Elvin Wizard, as capable as any outside of Bartok and Delvina. He inclined his head to Bartok in reverence for his blessing to teach the Apprentice. They started the exercises needed to learn to shield your thoughts, and Lazolon was more than impressed by the quickness that Sarzon showed in learning the technique. By the time they stopped for the night, he had mastered the technique and now needed to learn how to keep the shield up even when he slept. That technique could save your life, a Dark Mage could invade your dreams at night, and turn them into a living nightmare. Something no one with his Magical abilities could allow to happen. Lazolon could see his abilities and had told Bartok as much. Bartok was pleased with his new Apprentices abilities and looked forward to him passing the Trials, and the Cave, and joining him in the fight beyond Benelvin.
He was all that stood between the Dark Necromancer form invading Benelvin. He didn’t have the power to take down the spell, but he might learn of a way to shield himself from the wards, and once that happened, he would bring into Benelvin a Demon Horde, and all the foul creatures he could conjure. It had been a long five hundred years, he needed help on the outside. He was alone in the fight, and he could use an ally that he didn’t have to enchant. He had met and befriended many, and they had fought beside him against Morcandon the Black many times. But he needed a second Sorcerer at the very least, but rather have a wizard. The difference between them was a Sorcerer was the mirror opposite of a Dark Mage, they manipulated Magic, worked spells, and things like that, but they couldn’t manipulate time, the elements, or any of the things a Wizard could do. The only real enemy a Wizard needed to worry about was a Necromancer, the dark opposite of a Wizard, only concerned with themselves, and the Darkness they served.
That night, Sarzon discovered that protecting himself in his dreams, or while he slept, was more important than he thought. He had a nightmare, and it came into existence. He woke with a start and standing at the foot of his bed was the image from his nightmare. He screamed out and Bartok and Lazolon entered the tent hands glowing with energy resting on their palms, they were ready for a fight. The image turned, it was a goblin, a large ugly red and black goblin. It was screaming at him, and Bartok and Lazolon releasing the energy from their hands, destroyed the beast and it left nothing but ash when they destroyed it.
He was shaken, he hadn’t ever had one of his nightmares materialize before. He was either a stronger Wizard than he believed, or this place had something to do with the materialization of the nightmarish fiend. Bartok answered his question for him, your Magic has increased since entering Benelvin, and once you pass the trials and go through the Well of Souls, you will retain the increased skills and abilities. Your ability to raise the shield was impressive, you have done well. You have seen why we must guard our minds, if you hadn’t had your guards in place, that specter would have become real and hard to defeat, those things draw on your own source of Magic when they are created. That was merely a shadow beast and you could have defeated it yourself. The last lesson is the hardest, and yet the simplest, never allow a specter you created in a dream to overwhelm you or your abilities, just form the destructive energy you need and destroy it. It’s that simple. Don’t look at it as real, just your dream that materialized. It can’t harm you.
He was ready he thought, what else could he have to face now that he could shield his mind. He was anxious, he didn’t know what to expect from the Council, he had never met Delvina, but he had been with Bartok long enough to have heard him speak of her and her abilities. She was strong, a Sorceress with no equal, and she was the head of the Council, if he failed to garner her support, he would have to stay in Benelvin, a prospect he wasn’t looking forward to.
They came into Fair Haven the next morning; it was a sight to behold. The homes were actually part of the largest trees he had ever seen. They had formed rooms and doors, and the Elves had the most beautifully made furnishings in their homes. He hadn’t been taken to the Council Chamber, he and Bartok entered a home in a large Oak, he was impressed with the home. It seemed strange yet familiar, and then he figured out why, this was Bartok’s home in Benelvin.
They would spend the night there and meet with the Council the following day. There was a certain protocol that was followed by all Apprentices, there would be a ceremony that evening welcoming them into Benelvin, he would meet the Council at the Ceremony, and his trials would begin the next day. For now, Bartok told him to go to the room that had been prepared for him on the second floor, and to bath, refresh himself, and to rest until evening. It wouldn’t do for an Apprentice to appear at the Ceremony tired, disheveled, and travel worn. Bartok told him that in his room he would find new clothes and accoutrements to wear now the he had entered Benelvin.

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