The Shadow Chronicles: 1 - The White Knight
The morning sun illuminated the land of Lore. A white castle towered above the forest like a monument of purity. Surrounding the great castle was a vast village with peaceful townsfolk living their daily lives of farming, marketing, cooking, and drinking.
As the busy people went on, they couldn't even hear the metallic clacks of swordplay that echoed within the forest where the knights of order trained in there outpost.
A knight wearing metal plated armor wielding a straight blade as long as his arm stumbled back clumsily after another clash of steel. He threw the sword to the side, frustrated with the current results and unsheathed a rapier from his belt.
Charging onward, the warrior showed elite fencing movements like no other. The thin, needle-like blade flapped through the air, almost invisible and with the speed of a dervish.
Any other normal fighter would be troubled with the task of blocking it with no chance of dodging, but the knight barely got seven feet to his opponent as a glint of metal was slashed at him.
He jumped back and started to parry a thrust his rapier, but his opponent effortlessly blocked the onslaught, not with the broad side of his sword, but the very tip of the blade.
The rapier-wielding knight desperately tried to break his opponent's defenses, but his weapon was knocked out of his hand with only a twist of the wrist from the other.
He clumsily stumbled back and fell to the ground panting. The knight watching the practice looked over to the victor.
The man was seven feet tall with glistening white hair running down the back of his helmed head. The helmet covered half of his face. It was smooth and thinned to a curved point like a beak. A metal visor shielded the eyes.
He wore heavy plated full armor shined to the a pure white with golden edges. A silk cape draped from the broad shoulder plates where two metallic spikes donned the already regal armor.
The warrior carried a claymore with a blade the size of a full-grown man made of diamond. The guard was a blue gem the size of a head with gold wings sprouting from each side. The wired gripped handle led to a pommel crowning an egg-shaped azure jewel.
The knight stood proud with all eyes turned to him. Casually, he removed his helmet, putting it under his arm.
He had a handsome face with sapphire eyes. An elven circlet band crowned his head, holding up his bangs. He smiled down at the defeated soldier kindly.
"You show great promise recruit," he said in a deep commanding tone, "but you have much to learn."
"No fair!" the knight whined. "Like anybody expected me to-"
"That is enough," a grumbling voice interrupted from the far side of the small outpost. The group of warriors melted apart, forming a respectful path in the crowd. In that path walked a single fighter.
He wore standard knights' plate, but it has been worn into a dirty gray with several cracks on the edges. It reminded many of the knight of a gravestone, and the ragged jet-black cape that flowed behind him was like a living shadow. A thin sword hidden in a dark sheath clipped onto his belt.
The warrior's face was hardened and skinny with pale skin. Dark bangs grew under his topaz eyes. His messy raven black hair draped from his head, obviously neglected of proper care.
"You shouldn't play around with the rookies like that," the frightening looking man said. "Is that anyway for a captain to act Palture?"
Palture huffed a hearty laugh like an overgrown infant and heaved his massive blade over his shoulder.
"Loosen up why don't cha' Gus?"
The knights held their breaths and stiffened like statues as Palture said the name like it was cursed. Gus cracked his jaw for a while before answering in the same voice that made the soldiers cower.
"If any other man would've called me that instead of my noble title, he'd be six feet under," Gus stated, tapping a finger on the hilt of his sword. "Lucky you, you're not 'any other' man. But our childhood friendship will not excuse you of your insolence forever."
"Yes principle Gus," Palture mockingly said with no regard. Before anybody could breath, Palture leapt, sliding on the ground by the tip of his boots and stopped a dagger's length away from Gus. In fact, Gus had pulled out a rusty dagger was held it up right before he stopped.
"Stop playing around," Gus grumbled, slowly lowering the knife and dropped it into his belt pouch. "You should start getting serious for once and stop being such a playful fool. Honestly, you are a child at heart Palture!"
With that, Gus spun around and walked away in a huff. Palture grinned widely with playfulness in his eyes. Before the other knights could make a reaction, he took another soundless leap and dashed towards Gus with his claymore raised up in front of him.
In a split second, Gus would've been decapitated in half, but in a blink of an eye, he spun around, his cape moving along with him like a phantom and he caught Palture's blade in the air with only a rusty dagger in his hand.
Palture slid backwards and positioned himself at the ready. The corner of Gus's mouth twitched as he glared at the shining knight.
Gus advanced, running head on with his body leaned forward and his arms on his side. The black cape fluttered behind him, flapping in the backwind making him look like a flying ghost with daggers.
Gus flicked his wrist and instead of one dagger, he held four in each hand, clenched between each finger in a tight fist.
As they collided, a flawless battle waged between the two. Even though they both wore armor, they moved around as if they wore cloth robes. Their actions were swift and precise. The knights could only see blurs of black and white clash each other.
In the midst, Palture swung his sword with tremendous force, but Gus simply parried the blow with a hand of daggers and struck with an under blow, aiming for a gap in his armor. He missed and the blades slid off the metal plates and he lost balance.
Palture tried to take advantage of the opportunity and plunge his claymore down. Gus avoided the attack with a spin and writhed upwards like a snake. Quickly, Palture parried the blows of his daggers, stepping backwards each time.
Palture tried for a slash at the legs when Gus jumped backwards about ten meters. In mid air, he tossed his daggers and they zipped through the air like arrows. Lifting his blade up, Palture turned it to the side and the projectiles bounced off the broadside of his blade.
Gus stood where he landed ten meters away from Palture and the battle was still.
"This battle is not merely as fun as it should be," Palture smiled with sweat down his brow. "Come on. You can be much more fun then that. Can't you, Undertaker?"
Gus scowled at Palture and the knights around them stiffened and each took a step back.
"If you address me by that name," Gus growled in a deep tone, "then you will fight me by that name."
The Palture stood up with his left leg in front of him. Lifting up his colossal sword like it weighed nothing, he pointed the blade at Gus in a challenge.
Gus's gaze deepened. His arm inched towards his left side. His finger touched the pommel of his sword and slowly slid around the handle. As he gripped it, Gus declared boldly, "You have challenged the Undertaker! Knight of the dead!"
Palture's smirk became a bit more modest but his eyes still twinkled in excitement. Without thinking about it, Palture glanced at the sundial and snapped his head in the direction. His grin turned into an opened mouth and he ran towards the edge of the circle of knights.
Gus let go of his sword handle and watched as Palture ran past the departing crowd of warriors and into the forest.
"Where the bloody hell are you going!?" Gus yelled at him.
Without even slowing his pace, Palture turned his head back and yelled back, "This outpost has two captains for a reason! Take care of everything while I'm gone!"
"That still doesn't-"
Before he could finish, Palture disappeared into Oaklore forest leaving only the twinkle that shined from his armor and even that soon disappeared.
Gus grumbled something to himself as a recruit came up to him.
"Aren't you gonna go after him?" the knight asked. Gus shot him a glare and he quickly coward back. He let out a sigh as if trying to calm himself down and spoke in a dark tone.
"Whenever Palture leaves a battle, it's for something important. That is all you and I need to know."
He closed his eyes, taking in a steady breath. The wind rustled blowing back his messy hair to the side. As the wind blew, he mumbled out loud.
"He whose heart remains pure as diamond, whose purpose is not to fight but to protect, is he who wields the sword legend to holds the great spirit of light in its blade of diamond, the Div'ondos. Justice is his horse that rides him into battle and the heavens is his shield. He dons gold trimmed armor in the color of pureness. He ride to battle as the White Knight of Lore