Chapter 6 - Pieces of the Puzzle
The Elder, Auo, Lino, Cario, and all of the other adults present in the room were sitting in a circular formation in the great hall. Everyone seems to be having an important discussion. Mostly males were present and the few females that were present were the ones where their husbands had died in the war and if their sons had stayed back in the Kingdom of Elma.
Everyone was startled when Emy entered the hall at a fast pace. Auo immediately headed towards her and pulled her onto one side, "What's going on? Something happened?" He asked very anxiously.
"Naulo...Naulo might have entered the forest" Emy said with difficulty. She was starting to blame herself for not watching over Naulo more carefully. Though Naulo has never done anything before to worry anyone.
Emy received a light pat on her head and Auo went towards the group with a serious expression.
"Elder, it seems we must move up the plan."
“Had something happened?” The Elder said with an understanding tone.
“It seems Naulo has entered the forest on his own.”
“I see. The wheels of fate have started to turn.” The Elder stated. Auo slightly nodded.
---A little while earlier---
When Naulo and Emy returned to their homes Emy told Naulo to go get some firewood since their house was running out of firewood used for cooking as well as to keep warm. Naulo grudgingly went out while Emy starts preparation for making breakfast. There was not much to do in the village, yet at the same time there was a lot to do. Everyone has their own jobs. From cooking to catching prey to keeping a lookout different people were assigned to different things. Emy often chose cooking and sampling new prey and plants to see if they were edible and how best to cook it. She quite enjoy her time in the kitchen.
Naulo went out towards the inner circle of the village towards one of the sheds that contain storage materials.
Brr...it’s cold. I wanna sleep. I guess since I’m already 4 mother is starting to give me chores to do. Even though I can somewhat help out around the house, I always end up lazing around in the end. Naulo thought while pouting.
As Naulo approached the shed he suddenly felt a piercing yell full of anger. Naulo instinctively crouched down and covered his ears. As the yell dissipated Naulo raised his head and showed a concerned look towards the forest.
Wha? What was that? It’s coming from the forest? Huh?
Naulo looked around the village. It seems as if the sound was not heard by anyone else.
Was it the forest’s problem like father said this morning? No, if so then father would have also heard it and I would have felt it earlier. What is this?
Naulo was confused. A feeling originating from his deepest self came forward. Ever since Naulo was born he had never felt attached to anything. Sure, he cares for his parents and love them, but he would not sacrifice his life for them. He did not attach that much importance to anything. He felt detached to his life.
However, this time was different. He felt it strongly and he didn’t know why. He continuously look towards the forest with concern. Was this feeling connected to his past life? The more Naulo tried to ignore the sound and continue with what he was doing, the more uneasiness that appeared in his heart. He started to have trouble breathing as fear start to appear within him. Then, something like an instinct overtook his body.
I-, I-, I must go.
In the end this was the only thought left in Naulo as he headed towards the forest.
As the men started to prepare to head towards the forest only the Elder, Auo, and Emy remained in the great hall.
“What do you mean ‘wheels of fate has started to turn’?” Emy asked the Elder respectfully but also with a look of panic. If one looked closely at her face they would see concern with a bit of shock and fear.
The Elder looked at Emy with a look of trust, “I guess it’s about time to tell you.”
Emy looked at the Elder and Auo nervously.
“First off, how I know. Each one of us with a high position contains a special power. We are mutants within mutants because we had deviated from the elves and became more powerful. Auo has an extremely high sensitivity to nature as well as mana fluctuations when people use magic. That is why he is able to create the strongest barrier using the knowledge he gained. Cario might not be the only magical warrior in existence but he is certainly the strongest due to our tribe’s affinity with nature. Lino’s magic might not be all-powerful but he can borrow nature to help him see, even if it takes a lot of his mana.
“I, compared to everyone in this tribe, am weak. However, the reason I have survived till now is because I see visions of dangerous future events. Though they only appear when I have great concern over certain things and I have no control over them.
“Lately, I have been continuously concerned over this tribe. What I see is not a happy ending. We cannot escape our fate of destruction no matter how far we run and where we hide. Us leaving the Elma Kingdom would allow the kingdom to build it forces and fight against the Ragohu. However, with us staying there, they will face destruction as well.”
Emy was confused and couldn’t help asking, “Elder, why would the Renaun leaving allow the Elma Kingdom this?”
The Elder gave a painful smile, “It seems the Ragohu was more powerful than we all expected. This was a secret kept for 500 years. The Ragohu had always been after us, the Renaun tribe. The Elma Kingdom, even if unknowingly after the first few years, had always been protecting us from them. We are a small tribe and with the help of a kingdom we were able to live. It was a beneficial contract between the Elma and us. We gave them more military powers to rule over the neighboring kingdoms and they provide protection from the Ragohu’s armies. However, I had never believed that we were safe.”
“Why?” Emy couldn’t help but ask.
“That is a question with an answer that dates back even further, but we are running out of time. The world will be in chaos in a couple of years. Not just us, the Ragohu, and the Elma, but the entire world. And Naulo will be in the center of this turmoil. Therefore, we must protect Naulo and the children. For they will be the ones who shall determine the course this world will travel on in the future.”
At this moment the door opened and a man announced that they were done with the preparations and ready to move out.
Emy asked the last questions, “Elder, what do you see in your visions? How do you see them?”
“What I see is like what people see in dreams. Everything is vague but the outcome would always be true. Naulo, I saw clearly, and he plays an important part. Whether the role he plays is good or bad, I do not know. The main role and who plays it, I also do not know...
“I saw a demon, no a devil sneering over the mass destruction. I saw the world end.”
But how were you able to see that it can be saved? Can it even be saved? Emy questioned in her mind. She had a feeling that the Elder would not give a clear answer to these questions. The Elder had hope. He cared for this world and he does not want it to be destroyed.
The Elder left. Auo was by Emy’s side all throughout the explanation.
“I’m sorry Emy. I have brought you with me even when I know you were going to be facing danger. I’m sorry.” Auo said with a slightly shaking voice. He loved Emy from the moment he saw her in that bakery. He did everything in his power to get her to fall in love with him and it was not easy. He would sacrifice almost everything, even his own life, if it made her happy.
Emy shook her head strongly, “No, I wanted to go with you. It was my choice. It was not your fault!”
“You saw that I did not feel comfortable in the kingdom so you left with me.”
“No, I went with you for everyone’s sake.”
“You loved your father so much. You would not leave him like that.”
“I left for everyone’s sake” Emy repeated herself strongly, “I had a feeling at that time that I shouldn’t stay in the kingdom and now I finally know the reason.”
Auo still did not understand Emy’s explanation and he felt that Emy wanted to explain the reason so he did not ask. He will wait until Emy comes and tell him clearly herself. However, now Auo believed that Emy followed him because she wanted to and the danger she’s in was not his fault. He still blamed himself but felt a little bit more comforted.
“I think you should go and get Naulo back. He has to be safe.” Emy said to Auo staring into his sky-blue eyes. They were both worried over Naulo but somewhere inside them they know he will survive. Why did he go into the forest? They still did not know.
Auo gave Emy a slight peck on her lips and left. Emy would not be going. The village needed some people to watch over and she was not as close to nature as them so she will not be useful even if she did go.
As soon as everyone left Emy’s trusting smile for Auo disappeared. Her face showed that she was now filled with dread. She then gave a hopeless smile and spoke quietly to herself, “Elder, the destruction of the Elma and Renaun in your vision is not because they are after you, but they are after me. If the Ragohu were after me then that means...” After speaking, tears started to fall from Emy’s face.