The Shadows Chapter 5

Into the Cold, Hard Night

By Keith Adams

Magus put on his gray cloak and helm, the brown vest of Flea and white pants of Ozzie, and took the black-bladed scythe from it's resting place above his mantle. Some of the most powerful articles of magic ever devised - many by the thing who raised, Ozzius the Bl'cineorch, commonly known as Ozzie.

Magus looked over the cave that had been his home for nearly 2 years. It was a small, circular cave, filled with books and the junk that Gaspar had entrusted with him. He still concerned himself over what it's purpose was, but he had resigned himself to the fact he could not puzzle out it's use. Taking a long breath, Magus opened his wood doors and stepped into the outside world.

Magus had felt something tear through reality, possibly time. He had decided to go to the cave which, "before" Lavos had fallen served as a link to the Prehistoric Era.

Magus had liked to believe himself immune to the elements, but the truth was, growing up in Zeal and being raised after the Ice Age, he was not suited for the cold. The icy winds chilled him, bringing a cold fear into his heart; a fear of something he had no control over.

Taking a moment, Magus looked out onto the Mountains; they were beautiful, in their own way, piles of rock covered by a large layer of snow, dotted by an occasional Pine Tree. He looked down upon the forest where the Last Villagers held their forum, and where their huts were built. But Magus knew he was not of them, not able to blend in with their society, built on the remains of magic which Magus had scorned as a youth. Humanity would arise again, from this village, but he had no place in history.

Magus concentrated all his efforts into levitating. It was a trick he had learned from Ozzie, focusing all your will and energy into one task, and the task could be completed. Magus gradually began to rise. Once Magus reached the peak of a small mountain, he flourished his cape and began to build a field of pressure. Within a few seconds, Magus flew off in the direction of the Island where the cave holding the former timegate was located.

Magus seemed to lose himself while flying; he felt as though he were a bird, and a fairly fast one at that. It gave him an interesting sensation; one of freedom beyond description. Reluctantly, he slowed down as he reached the Isle housing the cave. He concentrated, and slowly floated downwards, reaching the small cave's mouth.

Ducking under the low ceiling, Magus entered a small cave, only about 20 feet long and 10 feet wide. And in the back, a blue light illuminated the cave. Magus recognized the blue light - it was the same color as a gate.

Approaching the lights source, Magus found a circle, with ever-changing patterns of bluish shades, as was normal for a gate. But there should be no gate here; all of the gates dissapeared after Lavos's death. The only explanation was that somehow, further damage to the timestream had been done. Magus began to approach the gate, but began to see images in the swirling patters; corpses littering the streets of a city; a black haired man looking over a cliff, a body being cradled in his arms; a man dressed in black being destroyed by a green light; a man covered with blood falling on a sword; a city being destroyed by fire and lightning; a red-haired man apparently killing a copy of himself; a dark fortress standing on a mountain; ships being rent asunder by a dark cloud; a lone man stnading against a great dark mass; and finally, the world awash in a great white light. More images were there, but they were in the background and indecipherable.

Taking a deep breath of a damp air in the cave, Magus stepped through the gate.


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