The Dragons of Keanna - Book II
by Jandar Tyr
All Hail the Lord of the Underground
At the gate to the underworld madness ruled the day as thousands of spirits were attempting to get free into the world while Azeal and his forces were fighting to contain them there. Mage spirits and warriors battled back and forth. The underworld was a war zone with spirits sending each other into oblivion. Azeal Tyr stood battling with his men against Muerte's souls freed from their personal hells. From her balcony she watched reveling in the death she had brought to the dead.
"Push them away from the gates!" Azeal called to his warriors as he swung his swords dispatching spirits one after another. Behind him another with a spear pulled back his arm then hurled the spear flying at Azeal. Just before it struck, Azeal heard a scream and turned.
"NOOO!!" Talin screamed.
As Azeal turned he saw the spear pierce the chest of his comrade. Talin fell to the ground, ectoplasm running from his chest. Azeal stooped to lift him.
"Leave me my lord." He said softly. " Battle on for my family up there. Don't let her win."
"I won't brave one." Azeal put him down and went back to the fighting.
From her balcony Muerte decided she was tired of watching. It was time she put an end to this rebellion. She raised herself into the air and slowly sailed forth into the fray blasting spirit after spirit in her way. Death walked among the dead this day. Glowing in the air with power she sent groups of tens and twenties to their deaths as she moved towards the gate. Azeal looked up and saw her coming his way laughing her evil laugh. She was so beautiful with her red hair flowing around her head. Azeal called for archers to fire on her but it was no use. Not one arrow could get through her power field. This was it Azeal thought to himself. It was over for him. But if he was to die, he would die trying to bring down his enemy. He spun his swords in his hand and called his elite guards around him.
"This is it." He said. "We charge. One of us my get through to her and end this. If not, we go with honor as we lived. Ready!"
"Ready!" They all called back.
Like avenging angels, they charged on her with weapons raised to bring her down. Suddenly from the gate a deafening call was heard echoing through all of the underworld.
"MUERTE STAND AND FACE ME!!"
All the fighting stopped as everyone turned to look at the gate. There standing proud as ever stood Nestor the true lord of the underworld. With him was Baron Valkar dressed in his old battle armor, twin swords in his hand. Nestor rose up into the air to face Muerte as Baron Valkar flew down to stand with his old enemy. Facing Muerte in his gleaming silver armor Nestor called out to her.
"Alea and I are free from our prison Hag!” He floated above the ground as the battle waged on beneath them.
"It doesn't matter Uncle." She said smiling seductively. "I beat you once and I'll beat you again."
"Then come on." He smiled holding out his hand showing her the flaming scimitar in his hand. "This will end today."
Muerte's smile faded as she gazed upon the sword in his hand. She knew just what he held. Hazzard the god killer. The goddess of war's deadly weapon.
"Yes." Nestor smiled at her. "This is Hazzard. Serina's weapon. Now we'll see who rules here. They'll be no confinement for you this time."
Nestor readied himself as he advanced on her. Muerte looked around for a way to escape. She knew none of her spells would make any difference against Hazzard and she was not a hand to hand fighter. Her only choice was to run.
"You win Uncle." She spat at him. "You can have your realm back. But this isn't over. You and your wife will feel my revenge soon and I will sit on your throne again. That I promise."
With that she disappeared in a flash of darkness and a loud thunderous crack. Nestor sighed and looked down at the battle raging around him.
"ENOUGH!!" He bellowed.
All the fighting came to a stop as everyone looked up at him there alone. Nestor sailed on towards his palace and stepped onto his balcony. He was home at last.
"Muerte is banished from this realm forever." He stated. "I rule here now and forever. Stand down or suffer the wrath of the true lord of the underworld."
All weapons dropped to the ground as everyone obeyed his command. Azeal ordered his men to round up the opposing force for Nestor to pass judgement on. Baron Valkar shook hands with Azeal then went and stood with the forces to be judged,
"What are you doing?" Azeal asked him.
"My punishment is not finished." The Baron told his old enemy. "I go back to my hell. I'm just glad to have been able to do my part to help,"
"Baron Valkar, Azeal Tyr!" Nestor called to them. "Come stand before me."
Together the two old enemies walk to Nestor's palace and bowed before him.
"Rise both of you." The two rose and stood before their lord. "Azeal Tyr. You have been a sworn enemy to this man for centuries. He killed many of your people and your own beloved son. I put his punishment in your hands. What shall it be?"
"My lord." Azeal looked on Baron Valkar his once most hated enemy. "I hated this man for years and with great reason. I know he was Muerte's first and high lord of all the Vampires. I also know how he suffered over the years because of the curse more than anyone else, but all that is over now, as is my hate. His punishment will be to rest in the Hall of Heroes with the rest of us. His past is behind him, his sins forgiven. Besides, he may still be needed. I don't think this is over."
"You are as wise as you are forgiving, Azeal." Nestor smiled at him. "Baron, the werewolves have forgiven you. Your sentence is absolved. Once the Celestial fields are restored, you shall have a home there next to your friend here. Also, you shall both from now on be able to go to a relative when called."
"We thank you my lord." Azeal and Valkar bowed and stepped out on to the balcony to address the horde of spirits gather there.
"All hail Nestor!" Azeal yelled out. " Lord of the underworld!!"
Cheers went up throughout the realm.
While Jandar and Rage slept, Ono thought the news about Wyland Rusk being free was too important to wait. He knew Wyland would head straight for Tir Na for revenge against the people that put him to death. The werewolves had many legends of the days of the werewolf/vampire war. Wyland Rusk had led a surprise attack on the werewolves on Baron Valkar's orders to capture and kill anyone of the Tyr family line. His magic had been able to disguise his men and shield all their vampire traits from anyone they confronted. But Wyland didn't count on Azeal's new found magic or the spell books he had stolen from Valkar. Azeal had studied hard and mastered spells long forgotten by the vampires and set wards around the Wolve's Lair that Wyland knew nothing about. Unknown to the vampires, the second they stepped across the borders of the city alarms went off in Azeal's mind. As they tried to enter Tyr Manor, magic surrounded them and held them in place until Azeal and his guards took them into custody. The unfortunate group was executed as spies. In those day's execution of a vampire meant staking out in the town square to wait for the sun to rise and burn them to death. As the sun rose and began to burn him, Wyland Rusk swore he would one day return to have his revenge on the Tyr line. Now it seemed Muerte had given him his chance. He was free again and he had every intention of carrying out his threat.
The full moon shined bright in the clear night sky as Shayn winged his way toward the Wolves Lair with his mate riding on his back. Ahead of them, Shayn saw the clearing they always used when arriving in Tir Na. Shayn spiraled down for a landing wondering how they got into this one.
"I have to warn father." Ono told him climbing off his back. "Besides, Aramis trust us with this and we can do it."
[Take on a vampire mage from hell you mean?] Shayn shifted back to his human form.
"No. " Ono said. "We're just here to warn them."
"We could have done that from home." Shayn walked off towards the Wolves Lair a little annoyed at Ono. "We didn't have to come here to do that."
Ono caught up with Shayn and stopped him. He could feel he was angry with him but he wasn't sure why.
"You trust me?" He asked looking into his eyes.
"Yes." He said as he looked lovingly at him. "Of course I do."
"Then why are you mad at me?"
"Because you didn't discuss this with me." He said angrily. "You just pulled me out of bed and ordered me to get dressed."
"I'm sorry." Ono said slipping his arms around Shayn's waist. "I thought this was important and couldn't wait. My family may be at risk. Your family too. But I should have explained what's going on. I'm sorry Shay."
Shayn knew he couldn't stay mad at his love and he was right. The family was at risk. If anything happened to any of them, he'd never forgive himself.
"So what do you want to do now?" Shayn asked.
"Call father." He kissed Shayn as they walked off arm in arm.
[Ono?] The answer came. [Son, this is not a good time. The Wolve's Lair is over run by vampire refugees and I'm organizing a force to help Valkar in Yadessa. I can't talk now.]
[But it's important father.]
[What is it Pup?] Drake sent back a little annoyed at the interruption.
[Wyland Rusk is free.] The young werewolf told his father.
For a few seconds Drake was silent as the news his son relayed to him sunk in and he realized what he was saying.
[How do you know this?] Drake asked. This news worried him. Wyland was a definite threat to all of his family including Ono.
[We have friends in the underworld.]
Ono and Shayn made their way through the dark forest with only moonlight to show them the way. They could hear the sounds of the night all around them loudly.
[Ono, where are you?] Drake asked. [I can almost feel you. Are you near here?]
[We're in the forest outside of the Lair heading home.] He answered. Suddenly Shayn stopped. Ono not paying attention almost ran into him.
"Shh!" Shayn held up his hand to quiet him.
[What is it?] He sent.
[The forest.] Shayn looked around using his magical vision to scan the area they were in. [There's no noise anymore, it just got quiet. There's someone else here with us.]
[Ono!] Drake called to his son. [Both of you shift now and run. Get to the manor fast, we're coming to find you!!]
[Shayn, let's go. We have to hurry. He's here!!]
Shifting to their wolf forms the two lovers took off running towards the Wolves lair keeping an eye out for any threats. As Shayn ran he saw magic flair in front of them and steered Ono off to the right to avoid it. Magical blasts began to hit the ground all around them knocking down trees and scooping pits in the soil. Leaping left then right Shayn realized they were being led into a trap. He decided the only way to go was up into the air.
[Ono. We're in trouble here.] He looked over to his mate running next to him.
[I know.] Ono sent back. [I'm sorry I got you into this.]
[It's ok love.] He sent. [I'm going to shift to Gabriel. You have to quickly get on my back so we can fly out of here.]
Shayn concentrated and shifted to his white dragon form. Ono leaped on his back shifting to more of a man wolf form and held on as Shayn vaulted into the air.
"You don't get away that easy." They heard from behind them. A bright glowing net appeared in front of them. Shayn couldn't turn fast enough to avoid it and crashed into it. Down they fell crashing through the dense trees to land together in a heap on the ground. Ono opened his eyes after changing back to his normal form and saw a tall thin man walking towards them with burn scars all over his face. He smiled at them as he stood over them.
"Wyland Rusk." Ono spat at him. "I knew you would come."
"Of course." He said looking down on them. "I swore to have my revenge didn't I. Now I shall, starting with you, the youngest Tyr."
Wyland raised his glowing hands over the two lovers on the ground and made a gesture summoning his power. In a beam of crimson power, he sent a blast at them. Shayn woke just as Wyland attacked. He saw the bolt of magic coming and turned himself so it would hit him instead of Ono.
"NOOOO!!" Ono screamed as the blast hit the Salvation stone Shayn carried and they were bathed in a blinding blue light. At the same second, Drake and Tof arrived to see Wyland's spell strike them.
"NOOOO!!!" Drake yelled and leaped savagely on Wyland slashing and ripping him apart. Tof ran to his brother shielding his eyes from the bright illumination that covered them. Slowly it began to fade and they could see again. Drake ran over and left Wyland's corpse to see how Shayn and Ono were. As he approached he saw Tof backing away.
"What is it?" Drake asked. "How are they?"
"Gone." he said, "There's no one here. Father they're gone!!"
Drake stepped forward in front of Tof to where he saw them laying and found nothing there. Tears filled his eyes as his heart was breaking. His Ono was dead? He couldn't believe that. He closed his eyes and reached out with his mind. Out past the forest. Past the Wolves Lair. He stretched his mind out over all the lands near Tir Na to New Keanna. He found Jandar laying in his bed with Rage and woke him.
[Jandar, help me!]
[Father?] Jandar sat up in their bed. [What is it?]
[It's Ono.] He sent. [Somethings happened. He and Shayn are gone.]
[Gone where?] He asked. [What happened to them?]
[They were attacked by an old enemy.] Drake allowed Jandar into his mind to witness what he had seen when he arrived. He saw Wyland's attack and his magic strike the Salvation stone. Jandar saw the blue flash as the magic's mixed and blinded those watching. Then it cleared and Jandar saw they were gone.
[Where are they?] Drake screamed in Jandar's mind. [Where is my pup? We have to find him!!]
Jandar knew his father was losing control. He felt the fear of losing Ono creep into his heart. He had to calm him down.
[Father.] He sent to him. [I will find him. They're not dead. We would have felt their death if that was what happened.]
Jandar reached over and shook Rage awake. Rage sat up looking a bit dazed and looked at Jandar. He saw the horror on his face.
"What's wrong?" he asked.
"It's Ono and Shayn." He said. "Something's happened. Call Eheren, I need him here now."
[Tof.] Jandar called his brother.
[Yes brother.] He answered.
[Get father home.] He said. [He's going to be out of it for a while so you will be in control there. I will find them. Just have Sharone keep him calm until I get there. Aggar can help with Valkar and Yadessa.]
[I'll do as you say.] He promised him. [Jandar? Are you sure they're OK?]
[Yes.] He assured his brother. [I don't know where they are, but they're not dead. Get father home now. And take Wyland and stake him out again. Let the sun have him. We'll be there soon.]
[We're on our way.]
After sending out the call to Eheren and Jax, Rage waited for Jandar to finish with Drake before asking any questions.
"What the hell is going on?" He asked.
"Our two youngest went out on their own to warn my father about trouble on the way." He told him. As he finished there was a knock at the door. Rage got up and opened it. It was Jax and Eheren.
"We have a problem." He told them. "Listen."
"Muerte open the gates to the underworld and freed some of the worst to come back and terrorize us." Jandar explained. "She's trying to divert our attention away from her."
"Right now." Rage said. "I don't care about her. What happened to Ono and Shayn?"
"There missing." Jandar said.
"What!!" Rage jumped to his feet smoke seeping from his nose. "WHERE ARE OUR BOYS?"
"Calm down love" Jandar stood and put his hands on his shoulders and sat him back down. "I don't know where they are. But if they were hurt we would feel it. Right? You would feel if Shayn was hurt wouldn't you?"
"Damn!" Jax said. "I was afraid they might do something."
"What do you mean?" Rage asked still hopping mad. "You know something about this?"
"They were supposed to stay here and tell you about the men Muerte sent back to Keanna." Jax said looking at Jandar and Rage. "Not go off after them. I should have known they would act on their own."
"No, it's not your fault." Rage said. "Those two are pretty headstrong."
"We can probe for them." Eheren said. "You, Jandar and I. And Jandar's right. If either of them were hurt, we would know. There's something you should know. Muerte no longer rules the underworld."
"What happened?" Jandar asked.
"You know Aramis freed Alea and Nestor from their moon prison." Eheren explained. "Nestor went back down and was able to take it back from her. So now she's back up here somewhere. I think we should call Aramis. He may know something that can help."
Jandar and Rage walked to the desk by the window and sat down to talk.
"We have to find them." Rage said. Jandar could hear the worry in his voice.
"I know love." Jandar took his hand to calm him. "But with Muerte on the loose she's more important. I think she'll head straight to Yadessa and Balthazar. Ono and Shayn can take care of themselves for now. We have the rest of the world to worry about. If we don't, she could win and then finding them won't matter."
"Why do you have to be so smart?" Rage said frustrated. He bent forward and kissed his mate.
"It's my curse." Jandar smiled. "We'll put Cutter on the search for the boys once he's back. He has the best mental abilities."
"And I need to talk to Aramis to see what he wants to do next." Rage said. "I think this is about to get crazy, love."
"We have to go to Tir Na." Jandar got up. "Eheren, get everyone together. We need to have a meeting."
"As you wish my lords." Eheren left to carry out their orders.
"There's something else you should know." Jax sat back down.
"This isn't going to be good is it?" Rage asked.
"Shh!" Jandar quieted his mate. "Let him finish."
"After freeing Alea and her husband Nestor, Aramis brought them back here. We wanted them to meet you two, but you were asleep."
"And?" Rage said. Jandar gave him that raised eyebrow look and Rage shut up.
"Alea is a prophetess." Jax told them. "A damn good one. The minute she touched Ono, she made a prediction."
Both Jandar and Rage slumped down on the bed and sighed. They both had history with prophesies. Rage was right, it wasn't going to be good.
"What was it." Jandar asked.
"She told them their destiny would take them far from home." He said. "This is what she said."
Protect the white and grey.
For they will cause the end of a thousand years of tyranny and enslavement.
Their power and courage will doom the high ones and bring freedom to all that suffer and fight with them.
The mark of the wolf and dragon will be the sign.
"And that's our boys right there" Rage threw his hands up.
"Any idea where they may be?" Jandar asked.
"None." Jax said. "They may not even be on Keanna anymore."
"What's that mean?" Rage said standing and getting upset. His eyes began to glow with fire.
"Calm down love." Jandar pulled him down beside him. "This is their there destiny. Neither Jax or Alea are responsible for any of this."
"I know." Rage told them. "I just want them home safe. Is there any way to find fine them?"
"I know someone that may be able to help." Jax got back on his feet. "My brother Karis. He's my father's messenger and he has access to many different realms that are out of our normal paths. If anyone can find them, he can."
"Can we put this in your hands Jax?" Jandar looked up at him worried. "We trust you and I know you care for both of them."
"I'd be honored to do all I can." He said bowing to them. "I'll bring them home. I promise."
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