Valiant was in his house in Thais resting from his previous journeys when a noise disturbed his tranquility, he stumbled and ran, already taking his sword with him. The source of the noise seemed to come from his door, which was ajar with a strange golden mark in the shape of a hand. Intrigued, he approached it and touched it, a powerful light filled the entire room and in an instant he found himself in Fardos' library with him watching.
- "Valiant... my son, come closer", Fardos said, knowing exactly that he would arrive at this moment.
Valiant, still confused, walked towards Fardos and said:
- "What happened Sir?"
Fardos created a heavy fog in the center of the huge library hall and from it several images appeared showing Iris, Hera, Riberus, Petros, Olga and Aerodus in Svargrond on their way to Buddel, the drunken boatman. Noting Valiant's confused face, Fardos said:
- "Your companions are searching for a sign of Variphor who has appeared in the waters of Svargrond, I will not be able to approach that location at the risk of my energy activating what may be a portal, perhaps a trap..."
- "War is imminent Valiant, we need to follow through with the plan and this mission is for one individual only, the Bonelords are strict, only one will be able to enter their hiding place..."
Valiant looked intently at Fardos, clearly indicating that he was ready to receive his mission, his energies were fully renewed and his thirst for a new adventure was at an all-time high. Fardos continued with the technical details:
- "Of the races that formed the old alliance, so far you and your companions have had contact with the Shapers, I'm afraid not in a very friendly way, and with the Dream Wardens, through Marv... The time has come for you to meet the Bonelords..."
- "Not just any Bonelords, but an ancient and isolated race, they don't even speak your language, basically their only form of understanding is their own language, the so-called 469."
Valiant showing on his face his confusion seemed to say, "And how will I communicate with them?" Fardos smiled, approached and said:
- "Communication will not be a problem my son, you will know exactly what to say at the right moment... in fact, you will be surprised."
Valiant in elation said:
- "I will learn 469 at last???? What do you mean? It can be translated?"
- "Time will answer you, take it easy my son", Fardos replied showing a smile, and continued:
- "Now pack your things and go to the place known as Hellgate, by the way, I believe you already know this place, look for the guardian of the library, only he can take you to the hiding place."
Valiant returned to his home, gathered supplies and left by ship for Ab'dendriel. The long and already familiar road was easy and soon he was inside the place known as Hellgate in the library filled with incomprehensible books, the librarian bonelord observed him and said:
- "Who are you, what are you doing here human?"
Valiant, already expecting such a reaction said:
- "I am Valiant, I am here in the name of Fardos, our creator."
486486 looked strangely at Valiant and approached, speaking:
- "He is only your creator... I repeat, what are you doing here human?"
At that moment Valiant, undecided of what to speak, felt a powerful aura of Fardos upon his body, and as if he knew what he was doing uttered his speech in the strange bonelord language:
- "486486... I need to enter the powerful and hidden bonelord city, and I need you to take me there!"
The librarian was startled and shouted:
- "WHAT! Do you know our language?! I thought I would never see that in my existence!..." he turned his back on Valiant and floated further away, soon stopped and spoke again:
- "The prophecy... are you playing with our prophecy... or is it coming true... It is not possible", he this time floated towards Valiant and said:
- "Unless you have met our language before, which is unlikely, you would already know about our prophecy, but from the confusion on your face it is certain you don't even know what I am talking about..."
Valiant, confused, said:
- "486486, I don't know any prophecy, I'm just talking to you."
- "You are..., but in 469, something never seen in humans", spoke the librarian.
Valiant upon hearing these words showed great astonishment, he hardly knew what he was doing differently, but at least it was working, taking advantage of the situation he said:
- "Exactly, I am the first, for this I ask you, take me to your hidden city."
486486 looked intently at Valiant, raised his 4 peripheral eyes and said:
- "Necropolis, yes... I can feel it... The prophecy is being fulfilled... It will be an honor for me to take you to our great city, by the way, my function here has ended."
- "Ended?" replied Valiant, in doubt.
- "Yes, human. My only function here is in replenishing and maintaining the books so that one day we would find the chosen human who could understand our language, most would come and just steal the books, but you are here, the first and only one who has deciphered it. Hellgate has accomplished its goal, we have, our observation post has surpassed Hellheim... Hahahaha, wait till I rub it in their faces!"
- "Okay, human, I'll take it. But since I still need to close down and dismantle this post, I will leave you alone there, just be careful, the elder Bonelords are not used to anything from the outside world and will attack you, if the prophecy is right, you will not have to be afraid, because the chosen one will not die there."
Valiant could not hide his fright at the last words, but he accepted it by being certain that he would be the chosen one. 486486 conjured a magic, and sparks of different colors appeared around him, at the same time everything seemed to spin and warp, in an instant everything stabilized and there was Valiant standing in the central square of Necropolis.
- "INVADER!" Shouted several Bonelords who were nearby.
Valiant observed around him, thousands of Bonelords of different colors began to approach and they did not seem to welcome him. Large heavily armed skeletons broke through the cordon of Bonelords isolation and set out to attack against Valiant, he quickly drew his sword and between several blows and after defeating some skeletons shouted:
- "STOP, I COME IN PEACE!"
Everyone was startled, it was not enough that a human had entered their city, he also spoke the 469 language. One of the bonelords, who seemed to have the most influence over all the others spoke up:
- "You speak our language! Are there more of you?"
Valiant, catching his breath, said:
- "Only I, I am the only one"
The bonelord approached, with his 2 armed skeleton bodyguards, pointed his peripheral eyes at Valiant and said:
- "486486 who sent you? Or was it 768568? He mentioned something about a prophec...", Before he could finish his sentence 486486 appeared and surprised everyone:
- "He is the chosen one, the only one, Valiant...", as he spoke he approached the imposing Bonelord who was interrogating Valiant, and continued:
- "The moment has come, the war is near... If he is here, if he has managed to unravel our language, it is because there is a purpose..."
- "And what do you think we should do, 486486?" replied the imposing Bonelord.
486486 approached Valiant, observed him, and turned again to the chief Bonelord and said:
- "He seems to fit perfectly into the powerful elder set, we should at least give him our best artifact. We are not talking about usual problems, but the risk of the end of everything, this human will need everything we possess, and only a true Bonelord can understand the enemy well, whatever this threat is..."
- "The threat they speak of is called Variphor, and yes, war is approaching", Valiant interrupted.
- "What, Variphor? He doesn't belong in our dimension... Only a madman would think of helping him do the dimension conversion process", replied the imposing Bonelord leader.
- "Not only are there enough crazy people, as they are doing this right now, I need to help Fardos stop them, and I don't know why I'm here... Yet..." replied Valiant, showing he was lost.
486486 positioned himself so that all the bonelords standing together in the large square could understand him
- "I know why you are here, I am not a librarian for nothing, I know the scriptures... Our prophecy speaks clearly that we must deliver our best artifacts to the chosen one, and with them he can win the great war!"
The imposing bonelord, leader of Necropolis finally spoke:
- "Right 486486, you are right! Valiant, follow me, don't worry about prying eyes along the way, you are our star today!"
Valiant then followed the Bonelord leader in silence through the strange streets of Necropolis, there were bones everywhere, several floors of what looked like a large rift between 2 walls with huge windows and balconies made equally of bones. Different skeletons working in the city called their attention, they were real slaves, the real builders of this immense city. The more they walked down the street, the more imposing the structures became, one thing seemed certain: they were in the noble area of the Bonelord capital. A huge pyramid loomed in the background at the end of the large street, and it was there that the leader was leading Valiant.
Inside the pyramid they passed through different corridors, but one in particular seemed to follow far beyond the structure of the pyramid, it seemed clear that they were entering the great wall. The dark floor changed to something very familiar to Valiant: a slate floor, just like the one he found only in Zathroth's secret library. With great curiosity about the floor he did not realize that the Bonelord Leader had stopped and was startled when he began to speak:
- "Here it is, Valiant... The gate that guards our artifact... Created in the beginning of time by the first Bonelords and their elder skeletons...", The Bonelord Leader turned to Valiant and continued, "Our prophecy says that there will be a day that a human will learn our language, and that this would mean that a war would be about to happen... We thought you were an invader, but you really know our language perfectly, it can only be you..."
The 4 side eyes of the Bonelord leader began to emit a strong light, the ground began to shake and a great amount of dust took over the place, the huge gate was opening. The artifacts room was amazing: first that there was no sign of dust, even though it had been closed for centuries or millennia, the 6 Bonelord statues in the background lit up immediately when the Bonelord leader approached, and huge pillars stood up in the also huge hall, its floor was extremely dark and on it were parts of the slate floors seen before. Valiant still could not see where the artifacts were. The bonelord blinked numerous times and another sound broke the silence of the place, the pillars were slowly descending. It was at this point, when the top of such pillars reached Valiant's field of vision, that he saw the set of the elder bonelords, there were 12 pieces that flooded the room with a powerful and yet unknown energy.
- "Here is Valiant, the artifacts... a combat uniform, put it on and prepare for war. This set was created to undergo metamorphosis depending on the location and who wears it, your inner energy will define its appearance, but it will depend on whether the environment allows it to manifest..."
Valiant then equipped one by one of the pieces, as he put on the helmet last he noticed a great light, a voice entered his mind:
- "My son... Valiant! Follower of the light, wearer of the armor and set of the brightest gold. I knew you would make it, go back to the library, your next mission already awaits you..."
Valiant did not understand the reason for the words that were clearly spoken by Fardos, until he looked at his armor. Its appearance looked nothing like the Bonelord pieces he had seen before, they had changed to the finest and brightest gold, all the pieces glowed and lit up the place so brightly that it startled him, and obviously caused the Bonelord leader to admire it, who said:
- "Go, follow the orders of Fardos, touch these books on these pedestals, they will take you to your destination, they are enchanted for this purpose, win this war!".
Valiant, excited about his shiny new appearance, ran towards the books and in a blink of an eye was again in the library next to Fardos.
- "Valiant! Your new appearance looks splendid, but it will fulfill a very important function of our next steps, you will soon understand", Fardos replied in a tone of great joy, and continued:
- "Know that your companions have returned from their journey on the icy seas of Svargrond, nothing has been found. Henricus has obtained support from Spectulus, Sinclair and Telas for the creation of a mechanism to check for signs of Variphor."
- "This is good news, Lord Fardos! And what would be the mission you said when I put on the bonelord helmet?", Valiant quickly replied.
Fardos smiled, conjured a chair for Valiant and said:
- "Sit down, that the story will be long and perhaps disturbing for you."
Valiant sat down and took a deep breath, with a certain nervousness, he could already sense that something very risky and dangerous was coming.
To be continued...