The Dragons of Keanna
Copyright © By Jandar Tyr
The Frost Belt of the Ice King.
Jayce, Ariel and Nautica were the next team sent out. Their destination was the country of Kensor. An isolated country to the north. It was a frigid place covered with ice and snow. Usually ice bound so not many ships came here. Why would they? There wasn't much here to export. The people here learned to provide everything they needed themselves. During the winter all the inhabitants lived underground with heat provided by thermal vents. Magic was practically unknown here and the people were simple. There were not many wars here. The only thing they feared was the wild Kensi and the real snowmen that roamed the lands. The Kensi were tall white furred tribal men that hunted with huge white furred dogs. So big they rode them. Kensi lived in the high caves and in the mountains. They hunted cave bears and the seal like creatures that swam in the rivers and ocean. They also hunted people. No one in Kensor traveled alone or without weapons. The most useful weapon up here was called a blaststone. The Blaststone was a new weapon, developed to fight the snowmen. Heat was there only weakness. Everybody learned to use one as a child and always carried one. The snowmen were really snowmen, made of snow and ice and magic. Intelligent with a real hate for anything warm blooded. Their touch could freeze any warmbloods. They made their homes in ice cities hidden in the glaciers. That was where they hid during the warm seasons. But now, ice and snow fell, so they were out on the ice trying to find a way into the human underground city of Torcin. Torcin was one of seven underground cities in Kensor. It was the largest city in the north and had the biggest population. Down below they had farms and livestock bred to survive in colder climates. The most popular means of travel down there was ice skates and spiked shoes. It was a pretty happy place. and things were about to change.
"Thank god for Jandar's heating spell." Jayce said as they flew on. "Without it I'd be frozen by now."
"I think it feels good." Nautica said riding on Ariel's back. "Almost like the bottom of the ocean. I'm good with cold and I have limited ice powers."
[That could be a big help here.] Ariel sent. [Either of you see any cities or towns?]
"Not a soul." Jayce peered out and scanned the lands they passed over. "I've seen a few caves and some pretty big animals. Hell if I know what they are, but no people so far."
"We're pretty close to where Insa said to go." Nautica said.
"Look over there!!" Jayce pointed. There were two people running from something. Whatever it was, it was huge, furry and fast.
"Come on!!" Jayce said pulling his sword. "They look like they need help!!"
Angling his wings, Jayce went into a dive. As they got closer they realized it was one of the Kensi on his dog chasing two people. Jayce flew over his head and swung down and smacked the rider on the head. He rolled off and crashed into a snowbank. Jayce landed in front of the two men who had stopped. The Kensi rose up and stood over seven feet tall. He beat his chest and roared. From his saddle he pulled a spear and drew back to throw. Suddenly a lightning bolt struck the ground at his feet. The Kensi jumped back and looked up. Ariel and Nautica were coming down fast. Growling, the Kensi grabbed his mount and climbed on, and the dog took off.
"Are you alright?" Jayce asked turning to the two men in white fur coats. Both men pushed back there hoods to reveal two young boys. One of sixteen the other about twelve smiling at them.
"We thank you winged man." The older boy said. "My name is Xander Corden. This is Drew my younger brother. We are returning from Amon to the east. If you hadn't come alone we might have been the Kensi tribes dinner tonight."
Beside Jayce, Nautica stood with Ariel still in her dragon form.
"Is that a dragon?" Drew asked from behind his brother.
"Yes. Her name is Ariel." Jayce told them. "Watch her."
With a flash of lightning Ariel shifted to her Elven form, the beautiful Seven. She stepped up to Drew, smiled and extended her hand.
"It's nice to meet you both." She said.
"WOW!!!!" Drew said.
"What are you two doing in the middle of nowhere?" Nautica asked.
"Nowhere?" Xander said. "Our cities right over there."
He pointed over to the cliffs behind them. Jayce and the others saw nothing, Xander could tell by the looks on their faces.
"Come on." He said. "I'll show you."
Together they walked towards the cliff Jayce looked ahead. There were cave openings. But he didn't see any city. The boys had to come from somewhere out here. He purposed the city could be hidden by magic. But he didn't feel any magic. Jayce didn't do magic, but he had a feel for it. He could tell when he was around it, and here he felt nothing. They made it to the cliff wall and stopped. Jayce looked around. Now what? From his pocket Xander took an oval stone. He placed it in a hole on the cliff face, and pushed it in. Light shone from under and all around the stone. There was a creaking noise and a doorway opened in the ice cliff.
"Magic?" Jayce asked as he looked over the opening.
"No." Xander said ushering them in. "It's science. Mechanical springs and weights that are activated by my blaststone. The stone provides the power.."
Together they all walked in, being careful on the ice. The corridor they walked was brightly lit by reflected light from up high. Jayce and the dragons looked around; there were carved images on the walls; pictures of scenes from the city's history, from the carving of the city to strange creatures they encountered on the ice. There were pictures of both the Kensi and the snowmen. Both of them frightening. Up ahead they saw some kind of metal contraption. Drew walked in and Xander held the door for them. Jayce looked at Nautica. Then shrugged and walked in. Xander shut the door and placed his blaststone in its place. The cage lurched to life and began to move.
"Hold on." Drew said. "It moves pretty fast."
Sliding down a ramp, the cage picked up speed. Ariel looked from Jayce to Xander. Xander and Drew didn't have any fear in their eyes so she relaxed a little. Nautica was scared to death, and Jayce loved it. Moving around curves and going higher, then a steep dive. The cage slowed to a stop. Xander took his stone as he opened the door. Nautica stumbled out on shaking legs looking green. The rest followed, Jayce with a look of pure delight.
"Let's do that again!!!" He said.
On an icy plain, Taren and the Shadows came to ground. This had been a long cold flight for Taren. The only thing that keep him warm was the heat from Terror. As a demon, Terror's body produced large amounts of heat. Enough to keep him warm as long as he stayed close. Graym to was cold. He was wrapped in his wings to fight the cold. But he wasn't as cold as Taren, his shadow abilities partly made him immune to the cold. Pelic and Velusia didn't seem to feel it at all.
"Which way do we go?" Pelic asked.
Taren opened the map and took a look at it. There was a flashing spot a little to the west. That was there destination.
"It's that way. West." He pointed.
"Good. Let's go." Pelic started forward.
"But we're not alone." Taren stopped him.
"What do you mean?" Graym asked.
"The dragons are here, too." He said. "I can feel them."
"Which way?" Pelic asked.
"See those cliffs? They went that way." Taren motioned to the north.
"That's the wrong way." Graym looked at Pelic. "They're on the wrong track."
"I think we should slow them down if we can." Taren said. "Or kill them. Polan would be pleased."
" Let's see where they went." Pelic said. "Then we can see what we can do."
"Why don't you three head west." Taren suggested. "Terror and I can check it out, and then meet you. If there's any way to slow them, we will.
Pelic thought for a minute. There was no way he could stop Taren. He was right. Slowing the dragons was the right thing to do. But he must try and warn them. He could send Mags to find them.
[I HEAR YOUR THOUGHTS. I'LL FIND THEM.]
Off Mags went to search for the dragons. He sailed off to the cliffs. He sensed the dragons here. But he didn't see a entrance. No matter, he'd go through the wall of ice. He reached out to pass through and met resistance. These walls where imbued with some kind of magic that stopped him from passing through. He had to find another way in. He searched all along the wall and found nothing. No way in. He went back to the place where the dragons entered to wait and see what Taren would do.
"Do what you can to slow or stop them then meet us." Pelic told Taren.
"Keep west." Taren said. "You'll run into a glacier, that's your destination."
"We'll wait for you to enter." Graym told him. "Hurry."
Terror took off as did the Shadows. Terror flew north to the cliffs. Using his elven sight, he could see their tracks. There's two dragons and three others. The tracks end at a wall. There he could see many other tracks. Mostly human, but a lot of something else. Something that didn't get in through the wall.
[SOMETHING HUNTS HERE] Terror sent. [SOMETHING BIG]
"I see that." Taren frowned. "This is a human settlement. Whatever it is, it's hunting the people."
[THEN WE HELP THEM IN.] Terror suggests. [THEN THEY WILL BE TOO BUSY HELPING THE HUMANS TO GET IN OUR WAY.]
"Can you smash through this wall?" Taren asked.
Terror blew fire out and melted the ice all over the entrance way. It was thick so it took time, but finally he was through to the stone doors. These he smashed with his hooves. Soon there was a large opening. Large enough for Terror to pass through. Then Terror roared a call to the Kensi.
[THAT WILL BRING THEM HERE. WE GO NOW.]
Taren climbed back onto Terror and they were off to the west. Mags watched Terror bring down the wall. What power the horse has!! This was the opening he needed. He flew in and settled for a few seconds to orient on the dragons. There they are. He made his way down through the maze of tunnels to the city cavern. Now to find the dragons.
Torcin was one of the most beautiful places Jayce and the dragons had ever seen. Down there they had marvelous white stone buildings, stone paved roads, and ice roads. The buildings were tall up to five stories. Lighting was provided by the sun and mirrors. Reflected light and some kind of solar powered batteries. These people had achieved a level of science that was unknown to most of the world. Jayce had been to many places and seen many things, which included science. Everything here was clean and beautiful. They kept it that way. The people laughed and everyone seemed happy. Xander took them to see the city manager. Maybe he knew of the belt. His name was Janos. He was a tall man and very busy. He saw them in his office.
"Thank you so much for saving the boys." He said shaking their hands.
"You're welcome." Jayce said. "They're great boys. But we need your help."
"Sure. What can I do for you?" Janos sat down and motioned them to sit too.
"We're looking for something that might be here." Ariel said. " It's a belt."
[ JAYCE!!] Mags flew in the window. Jayce turned as he heard his name called in his head.
[WE HAVE TROUBLE. THE SHADOWS TORE DOWN THE DOOR AND NOW THIS CITY IS NO LONGER SECURE.]
Then a loud roar echoed through the city.
"What was that?" Nautica and the rest jumped to their feet.
"That's the Kensi." Janos said as he rushed to the door. "Somehow they got in."
On the wall by the wall there was a switch for a speaker system, Janos turned it on.
"ATTENTION!!. ALL MEN AND WOMEN. THE KENSI HAVE BROKEN IN. DEFEND THE CITY. THEY MUST BE REPELLED."
"We want to help." Jayce told him. He pulled his sword from its scabbard.
"Go back to the entrance." Janos told them." That's where they're coming in. We have to get them out."
"Follow me." Xander said as he ran out. Reaching in his pocket he pulled his blaststone.
They made their way quickly through the city. They could hear howls and screams from everywhere. People ran in a panic to fight.
"Let's hit them, Ladies!"
Jayce took off into the air. His wings took him high and he scanned around for the Kensi. Ariel and Nautica shifted and went to work, Ariel in the air with Jayce and Nautica on the ground. There were many men fighting and being tossed like dolls. Jayce dived down and slashed about them. Ariel flew overhead and sent lightning down on them. Kensi ran crazy creating havoc in the city. Men used their blaststones and shot heat beams at them. Kensi died everywhere. Nautica ripped and tore through them, roaring. Xander pushed Drew into a room and blocked the door so none could get in. He stood there blasting any Kensi that came near. One of their dogs rushed at Xander. From above, Jayce saw Xander was in trouble. He dived down and came between Xander and the dog. Jayce slashed at its legs to bring it down, Snapping at him the dog lunged for Jayce. Screaming his rage, Jayce thrust out and stabbed the dog in the throat. It fell dead at his feet. Looking around he saw that the Kensi were running back to the entrance. But a few still fought. In the corner, Janos was backed in.
"Stay here. Protect your brother."
Jayce took off to help Janos. He came in behind the two Kensi. One turned to attack him and he drove his sword into its chest. It screamed and fell away. Jayce slashed at the other's back. With a back hand it sent him flying back. Enraged, the Kensi turned on Jayce. With bloody claws It reached down to grab him. Suddenly a heat bean caught it in the shoulder and spun it around. A large shadow appeared over the beast man. It looked up in time to see Nautica snap it up shake it and toss it dead to the floor. Janos went to Jayce to help him up.
"Are you alright?" He asked as Jayce got to his feet.
"Yeah." He said shaking his head. Jayce looked around. It all was over. All the Kensi were gone. There were a lot of hurt and wounded men lying around. And many more dead Kensi.
"Xander!!" He said.
"Relax." Janos told him. "He's fine. He saved your life."
Xander and Drew walked over to see both men smiling at them.
"What?" Xander said.
"You're my hero!!" Jayce said. He reached out and ruffled his hair. Nautica and Ariel came over to stand with Jayce.
"I couldn't let him hurt you." Xander said.
"You are one brave young man." Jayce told him. "The way you stood and protected your brother. No Kensi stood a chance against you."
Xander smiled at the high praise he was receiving.
"Now we have to get back to the job we came here for." Jayce told them. "We'll help you secure the city, and then were off on our search."
[IT'S TOO LATE JAYCE.] Mags sent. [THE SHADOWS ARE THERE. THEY WILL FIND IT. MOVE ON TO THE NEXT ONE.]
Taren caught up with the others at the glacier. He told them what he and Terror had done.
"You should have let me go in." Velusia laughed at the damage the Kensi had to have caused.
"Relax, You can come with me this time." Pelic said. "But as smoke."
"What are you planning?" Graym asked.
"To slip in as a shadow and see what we can find." Pelic told him. "It's in there somewhere. I have to find it."
"How will i know it?" Velusia asked. "What's it look like?"
"I don't know." Pelic said.
"It will give off some kind of magic effect." Taren told them. "What, I don't know. It's a belt. It may be in a tomb or something. Or even frozen in the glacier. But it's there."
"Unless you find a way in, I want you two to stay here." Pelic said. "The dragons may still find their way here. If they do, stall them, kill them, do what you have to."
All along the wall there was a series of cracks. Velusia became smoke and seeped into them. These cracks ran all the way through the glacier. Slowly she made her way in while Pelic just walked through the wall. It was a dense wall, about fifteen feet deeper than they were, in what seemed to be a cave system. But not just any ice caves, more like rooms. Pelic and Velusia found tables and chairs, furniture made of ice. All around them, they found statues of ice. It looked like men and woman made of ice and snow. But who could carve all this? And why? Certainly not the people of the city. It's too far away, and way too cold for them to spend more than a few minutes there at a time, and all this would have taken years to carve.
[What is all this?] Velusia asked.
[I don't know.] Pelic sent. [But keep looking, and can you become a clear gas? There may be someone here. I don't want the smoke to draw attention to you."
Velusia shifted to the form of hydrogen, A clear flammable gas that would not be very detectable.
[That's better.] He said. [Go in that direction, and be careful.]
[Why?] She said. [Nothing here can hurt us]
[Just do as I say.] Pelic silently floated away. The caves were really magnificent. Almost perfectly carved. Stairways and halls, tables and chairs, but no beds. On the tables were plates of snow and ice, like someone used that for food. Then Pelic found a fountain with running water. The statues he inspected were that of huge bearded ice men and beautiful women naked. The further he moved in, Pelic began to feel something. It was the magic effect Taren told them about. He followed it and found himself in front of a large set of doors, like the doors of king's hall leading to a throne room. Pelic passed through the doors. On the other side he found just what he expected. A throne room with the king carved on his throne. He had to be eight to nine feet tall. In his hand he held a long rod made of ice. Around his waist he wore a belt. A large silver belt studded with diamonds and one blue sapphire in the center. The gems were in the shape of a snowflake. This was The Frost Belt.
[I've found it.] He sent to Velusia and the others.
[I'll come to you.] Velusia sent. Pelic looked back at the Ice King. It seemed like his head had moved. Like now he was looking straight at him.
[That can't be!!] Pelic thought.
[What?] Taren asked.
[Nothing.] He said.
[It's my imagination.]
Pelic floated around the throne. Looking to see if he could reach the back of the belt. He could. He moved back to the front. This time the King's face had a different look.
[What's going on here?] He thought.
[What's going on in there?] Graym asked.
Loud crackling noises began to come from all around. Sounds of ice breaking. Pelic looked back to the King. He was standing now.
"WHY HAVE YOU COME HERE?"
He stepped down from the throne. He held out his hand and sent a cloud of frost that would have frozen any living being. Pelic moved aside
"YOU HAVE COME HERE TO DESTROY US!!"
He swung his staff at Pelic. It passed through him. Ice men began to wake everywhere. Velusia switched to a acid cloud and swirled around them, melting them one at a time.
[We're coming in.] Graym sent. [We found a place where the ice is thinner. Terror is breaking it down now.]
Pelic could hear noises of things breaking. Terrors roars were loud enough to hear deep in the mountain. More ice man came in as Pelic wove spells to defend himself. He sent energy bolts flying at them as they advanced. Each time one hit, the ice man exploded. But more came. The King stood on his dais directing them in the fight. Then Pelic heard Terrors roars coming closer. They were in the mountain. Graym and Taren came in, Graym sending his steel like feathers flying at the ice men. Like diamond drills they shattered the ice men as they made contact.
"This is fun." Velusia shouted.
She became a volcanic cloud and rushed at a number of ice men moving on Pelic. When she hit them they vaporized instantly. She kept laughing as she moved on to the next group.
"Taren over here!!" He called.
Terror kicked out and smashed two ice men as he made his way to Pelic.
"Where is it?" Taren asked.
"On the throne. the King!!" Pelic pointed. "Have Terror use his flame on him."
Taren had Terror advance on the King. As he saw the demon horse coming he tried to back away. Terror reared up and exhaled his flame. The King held his arms in front of his face and screamed as the flames hit him.
The king melted on his throne, Soon there was nothing left but the belt and a large puddle of water. With the King's death, the rest of the ice men crumbled. Soon a rumble began in the hall. Pelic ran forward and grabbed the belt.
Pelic rose up and sailed through the walls with Velusia following through the hole Terror made. Graym and Taren followed her up as the cave came crashing in behind them.
"Polan will be pleased." Taren said.
"Yes he will." Pelic said as he put the belt into his cloak. "We go find the next one."