Raindrops fell slowly from the sky, bringing with it the promises of a new monsoon, forming a misty layer on top of The City of Ages.
Another season was here. The winds were changing. Who knew what promises or uncertainties it may bring?
There were not many pedestrians moving down the road, causing the streets to look desolate, yet serene and calm in this misty weather.
However, quite a few kilometers forward, the Antarang Palace located within the city portrayed a completely different atmosphere. In one of the rooms in the palace, few pieces of Agni Stones were placed within the corners and empty places of the room, emitting light and heat and rejecting all the frost and cold on the cusp of entering, creating a space of soothing warm within the room.
Seated in the room, was a pretty youngster attending the teachings of his assigned teacher.
His features were delicate, to say the least; perfectly arched eyebrows framed a pair of hazel orbs with a mystical green tint. Fair-skinned, soft face with long raven brown hair loosely reaching all the way down. His whole being exuded something mystifying.
Veera, 11-years old. Full name Yadu Veera is the third son of the current head of Yadava Family. A peerless family which was a descendant of the powerful king, Yadu. They were patrons and loyal worshipers of Vishnu, Lord of the World. In the entire sub-continent of Ainu, they enjoyed the status of being in the top of all Divine families or simply, Son of Gods. As such, they were looked upon by the entire known world. There was no one who dared to look eye-to-eye with them, much less go against them.
Such prestige and reputation, after all, go hand to hand with one's actions and deeds. The Yadava family along with the other Divine Families were Immortal Bloodline Families. For their unrelenting loyalty and devotion to their Overlords. The Gods gave them their blessings, the ability to break the shackles and unearth the secrets of their body from their birth itself, to become something more then what they were actually destined to, to enter the journey of The Great Way.
As long as they remain loyal to their benefactors and do not forget their grace.
As such, from the very moment, a child was born into one of this family. He was destined to go through intense training and obstacles in an environment where he has to become a fox while keeping the image of a tiger or a snake while being a dragon to differentiate between good and bad. So as to not deviate from their path.
Although only eleven years of age, Veera was far more down to earth than his peers. He was not specifically blessed with any innate abilities since birth unlike his siblings nor did he had any interests or hobby in anything. But what he did lack was compensated with his monstrous talent in cultivation, his versatility to adept at anything and his amiable nature.
This points along with his looks earned him the title of "The Star-Born".
"The Great Kal War or the Wars of Reformations that lasted for 700 years symbolized the beginning of a new era. This war which was fought by every being present in and out of this world, was between the immortal forces loyal to the Gods, calling themselves by many names "The Chosen One", "The Holy","Celestials" etc etc. But for the purposes of this class, we will call them "The Allied Ones", including us. On the other side, with whom we fought with were the powerful forces of evil beings which also had many names. But as per the course, we now know them as "The Forgotten Ones". Simple as that, anyway..."
Although the teacher spoke seriously, the youth below him showed no signs of attention and was actually about to doze off.
Seeing this, the teacher without a word, rolled the book in his hand and used it fiercely to hit the table.
The noise was barely able to keep Veera alert, causing him to open his sleepy eyes abnormally wide like a ball to look at him.
His teacher felt both slightly angered and slightly helpless as he said, "What? Did you learn everything properly?"
This old man who looked like a monk was known as “Kautilya”. Although his appearance was very sloppy, he was not someone to be underestimated. His instructions were very clear and well-organized.
Veera nodded his head, now completely dozing off without a word.
Children by nature are playful and have no interest in the dry lessons; history was also not really that interesting. And Veera seemed no different.
The teacher pointed him to stand up, "tell me few points about this war and you may go."
Veera warily stood up, almost falling down, "Teacher, what else to tell? It signaled a symbol of the new renaissance. Immortals, all over the world that have been never known before united and fought for the first time together against a common enemy; even though occasional betrayals and grievances still remained. Humans are already selfish by nature; nothing new about that. The immortals from human factions worth noting were the Daoist Immortals, Sky Immortals, Celestial Immortals from the Yunan Plain of North and East. The Azraelic and Ismael’s, The Guardians called "Angels" and many other from the West and Middle West. And finally, us, Hindus from the Holy Union of the South......and many others in between which I don’t care about now."
"And what were others forces that you noted aside from humans?” Kautilya continued.
"Those damn elves, lizards which call themselves dragons, orcs, fairies, beast men."
"Last but not least, the present times?” Kautilya further questioned.
"This is the 12th millennia after the great war. It still influences us to this day. This is an age of Enlightenment, the last phase of one great cycle. And a new age will begin again. "
Kautilya lightly smirked and continued his lesson. "Moral?"
Veera rolled his eyes and fell down again. "Humans and Immortals alike never seem to change."
“Well said!” Kautilya sighed and then clapped, “looks like you have indeed worked hard, Veera.”
As Kautilya spoke, he patted Veeras head. “Keep it up. I know you are tired but life is itself a road inspired by love and guided by knowledge. “
Veera blinked at his teacher and looked at him with squinted eyes, “Teacher, it’s not that easy when you are made to study 18 different subjects every day along with other training, activities, chores etc. without any love. Gods be damned, I am just an 11-year old dude. What is the point of studying Vedic advanced mathematics and rational theory in order for one to become immortal? Isn’t that quite superfluous and going overboard? “
Kautilya just slightly smiled and said, “A mere trickle of drops of water, even though it is so tiny can fill the pitcher. Just the same way, we cultivators aside from our cultivation and other studies must keep on expanding our knowledge, dharma, money, and power. Each one of this thing is important. One is not complete without the other.”
Veera reluctantly accepted his master’s word though he still had his doubts. In a world that is ruled by Martial power. How can one focus on other things when the strong decide the rules and the weak strive to survive another day?
“Master, isn’t pursuing power to become the strongest is the ultimate aim of pursuing immortality? To become the strongest means to safeguards one’s own life and his closed ones, while looking down on others. Isn’t that what we have been taught seen birth?” Veera expressed his doubts as he too did not understand this paradox. Pursuing immortality in general, meant to extend one’s own life to live more. But to aspire to be the strongest in the path of immortality while killing others of your own kind, and in the end, getting killed too; isn’t this the greatest irony?
“See? Your studies are already working here. Well about that, as a matter of fact. They are wrong. To become immortal, you need to kill others said no one. Everyone has different thoughts and approach to this paradox. My thoughts may differ from you and there is nothing wrong with that. To become immortal, one needs to have a conviction for that. Often that conviction is born through the circumstance that forces them to take this path. Well, for them defending themselves is the only way to live another day. And let’s not forget that the resources needed for immortality are often very scarce. And scarcity always leads to chaos. Chaos leads to violence. And there we go. Furthermore, let’s not forget we are humans and will still be humans in the future. A fragment of that will still remain to us throughout our lives. Embracing being human means to accept our history filled with blood. We oppose and harm others to save our interests and in turn, they oppose us to safeguard their own. It is this desire for gaining more, more and something more that drives us forward.”
When Veera heard this, his mouth was agape. He wanted to argue but couldn’t find the words to do so.
After all, this was something everyone can understand. Kautilya was correct in that aspect.
Veera was enlightened and respectfully replied, “Teacher, I was naïve. I wonder when I will be as wise as you. “
Kautilya loudly laughed as if he had heard a good joke, “You spoiled brat have been in this world just for more than a mere decade and you have already learned how to talk smoothly. Brat, I see a bright future ahead of you.”
Veera was dazed for a while before he said, “Teacher, I am serious. To be honest, I don’t know what to do in my life. I am still small, but I can feel I have something only a few can have. Mama has asked me before what will I become, I couldn’t answer her back then. Everything is already being done by my brothers. For me power is just a tool, I want to be wise. Only through being wise, I can understand myself and the world around me. This is what I have read and heard.”
“You are weird, kid. You want to be wise just because you have read a book or heard other people telling you to do so. Well, I won’t stop you though. For better or worse, it’s at least a good start for a kid like you. But I do sense a lack of faith and conviction in you. God knows if it is just one of those childish dreams of yours. But do tell me, why you don’t aspire to be the strongest like many others of your age strive to do so? It’s much more interesting and blood pumping after all.”
Kautilya drank water in a cup as he spoke frankly.
To this Veera just smiled and replied, “Well, master. One does not seek something which he already has in his life.”
Kautilyas jaw dropped, and he coughed water. After all one had to say Veeras answer was pretty formidable in this day and age where everyone is megalomaniacs.
A long time later, when he finally regained his composure, he asked back, “So how are you going to do this?”
Veera shook his head. “No one knows.”
Kautilya was just about to feel disappointed; after all, he is still a kid. How many answers can a kid know?
But Veera just smiled, “It’s just fine if I don’t know though. It just means no one has ever tried to search for it before.”
Time passed by quickly.
Eventually, the time for classes ended.
Veera walked out of his tutorial room with a loud cheer.
"Fuck! those old farts will definitely make me go insane of hard work one of these days. What do they think of me as? See, how I will complain to mother about them."
As he walked out a servant girl ran forward and draped a golden lion cloak over him. "Ah, Third Young Master is out of his classes. The weather is bad outside; Don't catch a cold."
"Naina, I am already at the peak of the Nascent stage. This kind of weather barely makes me cold anymore and I love monsoons anyway."
"Young master, this is not about what you love or hate. If other people in the family were to know that I kept young master cold in this bad weather. I fear they will directly tell your two mothers without any hesitation. And I believe that it won't end well for me. Being the victim of your mother's ire is the last thing I want to do today."
Veera smiled when he heard this, "Haha, I don't think my mother would take such drastic measures. I know her well, but I cant say the same for royal mother though......"
Indeed, Veera is the son of two mothers. Precisely speaking, his father married two times. Breaking the Law of Two was something very rare in Ainu, the land of Hindus. But at least it was not something which was totally unheard of. Those who have the capability and capital to lead a happy family can naturally marry more partners as much as they can, as long as both of them mutually agree about it of course. Thus, polygamy and polyandry was not a foreign thing in Ainu, this was even more so in this city which was the base of top six divine families. Veeras father was one of the said persons.
Naina cried aggrievedly while following him."See, that's what I was talking about."
"What were you talking about?"
Suddenly, a gentle yet soothing sound resounded in the ears of Veera. Surprised, Naina and Veera both looked at each other. Then they gaze to where the sound came from.
Ahead of them were two women clad in red and blue.
Both of their appearances were graceful and elegant. Their disposition graceful, elegant and otherworldly. If the lady in red possessed the aura that could influence anyone with her demeanor, then the woman in blue can be best described as having a genteel personally that won't let anyone go near her. They did not seem to be from this world as if the influence of time had no effect on them. Anyone who saw them will say, they are a peerless beauty despite their age.
"Speak of the devils and they shall appear before you. This phrase is indeed true." Naina muttered.