-Written By: Epicstu Wyvernwriter
Within a circle of Hell that does not exist, there is a forge.
Edward awoke from his nightmare. He had been dreaming of fire and death every night since he had arrived. On top of that, it had rained all night and the shelter he had made from tree branches and leaves could have been a little better. His thick fur coat was beige with black fur covering his forearms and lower legs. The fur on his paw-like hands and feet was as white as snow. He stood up, a Fennec fox wearing plate armor and a chain mail scarf with a thick and durable, cloth-like, material along one side for the wearer’s comfort. He had only been there a few days, but he couldn’t remember anything about before he got there except for his name, Edward Michael Dimir. His instincts were still there however and survival seemed to come naturally to him. He put out the fire, cleaned up his camp, and headed out. The forest he walked through had no path and was dense with large trees. He had been heading north because it felt familiar to him. The farther north he got the colder it got, and the colder it got the more comfortable he became.
As he continued he came to a clearing and saw her. A dual-toned, double-edged sword of blackened metal, stuck blade first into the ground. The weapon’s silver tones almost made her seem alive, as though she was looking at him. Edward stepped towards her cautiously. She was drawing him towards her and he could not take his eyes off her. He moved in close to the sword, grasped her hilt in both of his hands, and pulled her out of the ground. “You’re a lot heavier than you look,” said Edward with a surprised yet cheerful tone. He could almost remember how it felt to wield a greatsword. While this sword was no greatsword, she could easily rival one in weight and her smaller size allowed Edward to wield her in one hand with ease. He held her up in his right hand and examined the master crafted blade which seemed to be forged of more than just iron or steel, though he could not tell of what. As he examined the blade he could not help but feel as though the weapon was somehow trying to tell him something. Suddenly the Sword’s blade became as stone and began to glow a horrifying fiery red on one side and a brilliant electric purple on the other. Each side had Runes inscribed in a dialect unknown to Edward. A surge of energy began to travel from the Sword to Edward’s hand all the way up his arm and over his right eye. He tried to let go of her but he could not. It was as though the sword was holding on to him. His entire body felt as though it were being squeezed tighter and tighter as the pain grew and grew until finally, he passed out.
“Just how much further are you gonna keep walking? There is nothing in this direction!” Deceit moved around her new fennec companion but Edward didn’t seem to acknowledge her existence at all. Deceit began shouting at him, flailing her arms frantically in the hopes of him noticing her, but to no avail. “He… He can’t hear me. He can’t even see me…” She positioned herself so that she could look him in his right eye. “I’m right here” She placed her right hand over his right eye. “I’m right here” she repeated. A single tear fell down her cheek.
Edward stopped. A burning sensation swelled over his right eye for just a moment, then the pain stopped. He looked around but, much to his surprise, he now stood in the center of a small village bustling with carefree happy villagers.
“Hey there Friend,” said a voice from behind Edward. “New in town eh?”
Edward turned around to investigate. Before him stood a little old man. “Uh, Yeah about that. Where am I?” He questioned the man.
“Why, you’re in the Village of Binding, friend.” The old man seemed to be excited by the idea of a newcomer in the Village. “Just a small town of laid-back folk like me, I’m the Mayor.”
“Oh.” Edward became flustered having realized the level of respect the man’s title held. “I’m uh, it’s a pleasure to meet you, Sir.” Edward extended a paw as a token of goodwill.
The Mayor just laughed. “No need for formalities, Boy.” He laughed some more. “I’m not that important, I assure you. The pleasure is all mine.” The Mayor took Edward Dimir’s paw in both his hands and with a big smile on his face, shook it.
Deceit found herself in a pinewood forest with a freshly laid blanket of snow covering the ground, draping over the trees, and capping the mountains far off in the distance. As she wandered forward, she came across three little Fennec Fox Pups playing in the snow. She followed them as they frolicked through the forest eventually ending up in a clearing where a battered old shack sat center stage. “Dinner’s ready!” came a voice from inside the shack.
“Coming Mom!” The three Pups shouted back in unison. They ran inside and moments later came back out. This repeated several times as time sped forward. Deceit couldn’t help but giggle a little at the three of them play, grow, and train. All the while one of the pups caught her eye. He had teal eyes and wore a chain mail scarf. The three entered the shack one last time. When they did not come back out Deceit went inside to find them but found herself inside a Church instead. “Alright, what’s goi…” A large old Fennec Fox wearing hooded fryer robes and holding an incense burner shushed her before she could finish. The old Fox slowly pointed to the front of the dark and abandoned Church towards the Altar. As Deceit looked up to see what he was pointing at, the church suddenly became well lit and filled with Fennec Foxes of all ages, shapes, and sizes. At the front of the Altar, facing it, were the three Fennec Fox Brothers, all grown up. They knelt before the Alter. Between them and the Alter stood a Priest and on the Altar lay a silver axe, an iron clockwork hammer, and a steel greatsword. The first Fox the Priest turned to was tall and skinny and wore blackened armor. Along each of his ears were a row of weighted silver rings, three on his right ear and four on his left ear. Seven in total. He was the oldest. The Priest knighted him, Sir Aleister Keith Dimir, and handed him the silver axe. The second Fox the Priest turned to was much smaller than the first. He wore baggy pants and leather boots, no shirt, and a cape and his hair was glorious. He was the youngest and though he was much smaller than his Brothers he was the strongest. The Priest Knighted him, Sir Riley Joel Dimir, and gave him the iron clockwork hammer. To the last Fennec Fox, who wore simple plate armor and the same chain mail scarf he had been wearing all his life, the Priest turned and said: “I Knight thee, Sir Edward Michael Dimir” and handed him the steel greatsword.
As soon as she heard the name Deceit knew that he was the one who found her. “Edward Dimir” she whispered. “My Knight.” As a blade, she felt a longing for a wielder to call her own, and she had set her heart on this fox.
“Edward Michael Dimir.” A stern authoritative voice echoed as Deceit found herself in a dark council chamber. Nine figures sat high above Edward in a circle around him. She looked over to Edward who was now on his knees and in chains. “You have been charged” the figure continued, “with crimes against the Church and against God. How do you plea?”
“Guilty,” Edward said the word with no hesitation.
“Very well. Edward Micheal Dimir. I hereby sentence you to death, as punishment for this heinous act of blasphemy. May God have mercy on your soul.” As the Bishop gave his sentence, Deceit watched in horror as a large axe appeared held above Edward’s neck who was now on the chopping block at a public gathering. Deceit looked around, but could not find Edwards brothers or his mother. Just a little old fennec fox forced to watch. He had a look of regret and guilt about him as a single tear fell down his cheek. Deceit wondered who he was and what he had done.
Edward put his paw over his right eye, it burned again, this time with a shocking sensation as though he had been struck by lightning, but he was strong enough to fight the pain, for now. He looked around and saw the old man had left. Figuring that the Mayor was probably busy with his duties, he started walking further into town only to find he wasn’t in a town anymore. He was in the sky, walking on clouds. Edward cautiously yet curiously examining everything, he wasn’t sure where he was, but there was an overwhelming sensation of joy and wonder about it. As he walked on something flew past him, nearly running into him. He looked up and saw her. An Archangel with black feathered wings and hair like blackened frost flowing like silk in a long ponytail with her bangs perked just over her forehead. She wore exquisite armor of black and silver. In her right hand, she held a bow and both it and her armor were wreathed in lightning as brilliantly purple as her eyes. She was flawless, and Edward shuttered before her glory and was unable to move. She flew up to Edward and looked at and around him as though she couldn’t see him yet somehow knew he was there. Then darkness came.
Edward could hear her screams as he turned around to behold, in horror, as this once majestic and proud Archangel was tortured by a figure cloaked in shadow until her tears fell like rain and her cries cracked like thunder. The Shadow then took her tears and force-fed her the blood of a winged serpent. He then bound her in the tears she had wept in pain and forged her into a sword, tempering her with the same blood he had forced her to drink. “Deceit.” as the Shadow gave her the name it became engraved in dark Hellfire in the language of Hell on one side and the Heavenlightning she had once wielded in the language of Heaven on the other.
The final hammer swing struck just as the axe did and Deceit found herself back in the forest, stabbed blade first into the ground. Edward found himself standing, in the same forest, just a few paces away from her as they stared at each other.
Edward walked up to Deceit and grasped her hilt. Deceit’s blade was wreathed in a whirlwind of Hellfire as she drew it from the very ground beneath her, which had become cracked and scorched in flame. Edward pulled her out of the ground and held her up as Heavenlightning struck her from the skies above. Edwards right eye burned bright with ashen Hellflame as bolts of Heavenlightning flashed within it. Edward cried out in pain as he grasped her in both hands and stabbed her into the ground before him. Still holding on to her, he braced and closed his eyes to focus. His teeth were electrified and his mouth was filled with flame. “Deceit” Edward’s voice was calm. Then he yelled,“Give me everything you’ve got!” Heavenlightning struck and Hellfire burned as Deceit did as Edward had requested and held nothing back. Then all became bright and then dark as the two of them became bound to one another.
Edward Dimir awoke near a river within the forest. “Had it all been just a dream?” He wondered to himself as he went to the river and began to wash his face. As he did he noticed a mark, a burned scar starting from the palm of his right hand, continuing up his arm like a tail connected to the silhouette of the winged serpent, that had been used to forge Deceit, over his right eye. He examined his eye closely. There was no visual damage to it and he could still see out of it. The mark seemed to burn ever so softly, pulsating like the embers of a fire.
“Hey.” said a woman’s voice from behind Edward.
He turned around and there she was. He gripped her hilt, held her up, and looked at her. He had seen her past as she had seen his. Though he couldn’t remember his own for himself, he figured she couldn’t remember much of her past either. “I think we both have stories to tell each other.”
Deceit seemed to smile at Edward. “Yeah” she was hesitant to say it, but so was he.
Edward removed the right arm piece from his armor since it had been badly damaged, when he got the mark, and fashioned what was left of it into a crude sheath for his new companion. “There, what do you think?” Edward said as he admired his handiwork.
“You’re joking right?” Deceit looked at Edward. “You’re not joking.” She sighed disappointingly.
Edward chuckled in response “It’ll do for now.” He said as he sheathed Deceit and headed north.