Reference Map - http://i.imgur.com/xwXjF.png
"And what makes you so sure that he is a Nexist?" said the fair haired woman, staring out at her jury, and the witness.
The tall man cringed. Use of the 'N-Word' wasn't used much in the city. "I saw him! I saw him use the.... The dark magic!" He pointed to the suspect, an elderly man, who couldn't take much more.
"What kind of magic?" The woman said, calmly. She needed to win this case.
"You know the kind!" spat the accuser. "I saw him kill my cattle without moving a muscle! They just flew right int the air, I say!"
Miss Penelope Reagle was a desperate defender of the innocent, one of the few left in this city. As soon as the Nexum-Aurem war ceased, many of the people started discriminating against each other, blaming the so called 'Nexists' for all that went wrong. Penelope believed that having a 'scapegoat' was a common flaw of man, something that would span centuries and dimensions.
"Ms. Regal?" The courier said.
"Excuse me" she said. "If you haven't noticed, I'm in the middle of something here."
"It's from Mordis. Says it's important" the page motioned to the door.
"Will you all excuse me?" she said to nobody in the room in particular. "I have some other matters to attend to."
The first thing that Penelope saw was a short old man with funny round glasses and some contraption in his hand. The next thing she saw was William Cael, and War Commander Alexander. And of course she saw Mordis.
"Ah, Penelope." said Mordis. "Please join us. I was just about to fill them in on what's going on. Gentlemen, this is the head of the Aurem Criminal Justification Department."
Penelope blushed at her title. She did never like that formal title.
"William." said Mordis. "We are in trouble. Penelope here and I are two of the very few who believe that you are in fact, innocent."
"How could I be guilty?" said William. "Everyone saw the other man do it!"
"But people think that you supplied him with the Axum" said Penelope. "Since only a select few know where it was hidden"
"Your fight with Father was not unheard." said Mordis, referring to the night of the end of the war. "People know you were angered. They think you wanted to be a leader sooner. And we are all aware what the Axum can do in that regard."
"Then is the assassin the Vexîre now?" said Alexander, speaking for the first time.
"No." said Mordis. "Because Father isn't dead yet."
William's heart skipped a beat. "Where is he?" he said.
"He's in a coma. The shock to his body from the piercing of the Axum stunned him. We've done what we could, but he only has a week or two left."
"Then who will be in charge?" said William. "It can't be me, I'm a fugitive."
"It's not me, I assure you." said Mordis. "Mr. Pentrali has been running the show since you disappeared."
Mr. Pentrali was the fiery and radical former governor of Cael city, the second biggest cosmopolitan city in Aurem.
"He just took over. Nobody fought it really, they decided they needed a powerful leader, and not me." Mordis looked down. "His first act was to arrest all former members of government, including you. Only reason that Penelope here got out of it is that he thinks she's a pretty one."
All four men looked at her simultaneously.
"Not my type" she said simply.
"Then what do we do?" said Alexander.
"We need to find the Axum and then the assailant. William has to kill him with it." said Penelope.
"Yes." said Mordis. "I want you to describe the killer to our crime-artist. Francis, come in here?"
From the moment this man, or boy walked in, William knew something was off about him. Something was familiar.
He had dark hair and brown eyes, a very rare thing in Aurem. He only looked sixteen or seventeen, and he had on dark clothing. His eyes widened when he saw the prince. Instinctively, he knelt.
"No need for that.' said Mordis. "William, describe him. Francis here will draw us your description."
As William described the man that he let escape, Francis diligently scribbled on his parchment.
Finally, when William had described the assailant to the smallest detail, Francis flipped his page over.
The man looking back at the group looked indeed like an assassin. Penelope, having seen every criminal on file immediately knew what they were dealing with.
"Silvus Sixton" she said. "We've had trouble with him before."
"Who is he?" said Alexander.
"He's a lone terrorist. He seeks power, he wants to be a leader. He wants an audience."
"So he isn't a Nexist Rebel?" said William. "Where's he from?"
"He's believed to be native VexoMesan citizen, but he was banished from Aurem for violence and had a mental breakdown about ten years ago. He then was banished from Excello, before it was Nex-ruled, for the same thing, so he just takes his hatred out on both countries." said Mordis. "That's what I've heard, anyway"
"And if he becomes the Vexîre" said William. "He can make the citizens do and believe what he pleases. We need to find him."
"Where might he have gone?" said Penelope. "Did you see?"
"He seemed to go south, near Caer city." said William. "If he's trying to create a revolution, the best place to go would be there. You all know how many radical thinkers it has."
"William." said Mordis. "You need to go find him, and return him to Imperium."
"Why don't you just do it?"
Garland said it. All eyes turned on him, as the other company seemed to have forgotten he was still there.
"With all the troops you have at your disposal, you could do this easily. Why make your brother do it?"
"Because, lowly workman." condescended Mordis, "The military has become increasingly disobedient to me, only to Pentrali and his new government. I alone am powerless."
"But we don't have the Axum." said William. "Alexander here arrested me before I got a chance to take it. It's in Garland's basement."
"Then retrieve it." said Mordis. "and bring it here for safekeeping. After that, you need to find Silvus Sixton and bring him here, so that you can kill him with the Axum."
The doors opened and a guard came in. "Sire?" He looked from the fugitives to Mordis.
He could barely pull out his sword when Francis his him over the head with a chair, he fell to the ground, unconscious.
"You need to get out of here." said Mordis. "They are all looking for you. Take Francis, he is a better fighter than he looks."
"I'll go too." said Penelope.
"No" said Mordis. "Your a public figure. You need to stay here and help us throw Pentrali off the scent."
"We need to hurry." said William.
The four men quickly made their way to the outside portion of the bridge. The wind blew hard, their breath shallow. The glass bridge led to the Airship. But they weren't going to get there easily.
In between them and the ship were about thirty legionnaires.
"Put your hands up, drop your weapons!" said the one in front, pointing his sword. "You are all under arrest for treason of the Empire of Aurem!"
Three of them out their hands up. Garland did not.
"You, Tekton!" said the legionary. "Drop your... Eh... Weapon!" Garland was fiddling with a small spherical golden contraption. He did not respond.
"Drop it!" said the man again.
Garland put a final piece into the golden ball to make it a perfect sphere. And then he threw it to the ground.
The ball shattered and exploded into a cloud of white smoke. The four men picked up their weapons and started to attack. Confused and caught by surprise, the guards were sitting ducks.
Garland hit guards with a big metal wrench and Francis took out a dagger and stabbed quite a few people. He blocked swords with that dagger.
Alexander and William slashed away at the armored guards, most just falling off the glass bridge. The glass started to crack.
Alexander was taken by surprise when the glass under him shattered. He started to fall and grabbed onto a small ledge off the base of the palace.
The evening market crowd looked up at the shattering bridge. Some screamed, some just ran.
Garland had run to the ship. "Hurry, the bridge is shattering!" he yelled.
William got punched in the face by the lead Legionnaire, who threw him to the ground. He raised his sword.
"Help!" William said to nobody in particular. The man's sword was going to pierce him.
Francis looked over to see that William about to die. He really didn't want to have to use that particular skill again.
"Francis!" yelled William. "Help!"
Francis sighed and raised his hands.
A fallen beam from the bridge levitated into the air. It flew at the Legionaire and knocked him off balance, he was levitated into the air, and dropped into a nearby fountain.
Francis grabbed William and ran as fast as he could to the ship. He wasn't that strong, and William was weighing down on him.
Francis pushed him onto the ship and then jumped off. He figured now that they had seen this, he might as well use it.
Black energy fields emerged on the bottoms of his feet as he ran through midair and grabbed Alexander's arm. He brought him onto the ship.
They were being shot at by another wave of guards. The steam engine roared to life and the sails fluttered.
Arrows whizzed through the sails which slowed them down. They were going to crash.
As Garland desperately tried to steer the ship upwards, William said "Francis, what the hell was that? How did you do that?"
"He can explain himself later." said Alexander. "The ship is going down. Francis, do you think you might be able to lift it?"
Francis nodded weakly, and raised his hands. The bottom half of the ship glowed black, and they stopped descending.
Soon, they were out of range of arrows. "Keep going, Francis." said William. "We just need to find a safe hiding spot."
But Francis was depleted. He fell to the ground, and the ship started to fall just as fast.
The broken vessel skimmed the treetops as it glided into a dense forest. It wouldn't be up much longer.
"We need to jump!" yelled Garland.
"Are you crazy?" yelled William.
"Yes." said Garland, as he jumped into the adjacent tree, landing on his face. Alexander grabbed the unconscious Francis and jumped. William took a deep breath, and jumped off right as the ship hit a large tree and shattered.
William regained consciousness as Alexander was shaking him. "Wake up, you'll be ok." he said.
William groggily sat up and looked around. They were in a forest alright.
Garland was surveying the damage to the ship and Francis was slowly regaining consciousness.
Alexander gave him a canteen. "Here, drink this" he said.
"That was some pretty interesting fighting for a criminal sketch artist." said William.
"It's a gift and a curse." said Francis, simply. "I was born with it. It happens more frequently than you think."
"So you decided to get a paperwork job?"
"I decided I did not want to use these powers anymore" he said.
"Anymore?" inquired William.
"Let the boy sleep!" said Garland. "This ship is destroyed."
"Really?" said Alexander. "I hadn't noticed. "
"We need to find the Axum." said William. "It's still in Garland's basement, in Windle village.
"Well" said Garland, looking at the sun setting. "We seem to have landed in the Great Forest. Which means that Windle village is hours away, even if we had a ship. I think we should make camp and set off fresh in the morning."
Outnumbered, William was the only one that seemed to care that they had a limited amount of time. He gave in to the majority and they set up camp.
"I'll take first watch." said William. The sun showed its last ray of light and receded Into the mountains.