Chapter One: Last Night

PathFindersChapterOneLastNight

Looking down at his leather watch wrapped around his wrist Eko stood up on the edge of the building.

“Time to head home” he mumbled as he looked up into the darkening sky.

Raising both hands into the air and slowly leaning forward, closing his eyes till he felt the rush of the wind flowing around his body as he fell towards the alley below. Opening his eyes just before the floor, crouching and rolling as he hit the ground. Using the momentum to continue into a jog as he entered the streets of Janlyn just as the street lights lit up. Running up the road he passed March, a local baker. March was quite a large man and always had a smile on his face, has a wife and two kids. He became good friends with Eko after the accident.

“Eko, My buddy! I had some unsold bread today so here take this.” March shouted as he tossed a loaf of bread towards Eko.

Eko turned mid run yelling “Thanks March!” as he caught the bread and continued to run.

As the sky grew darker the stars began to shine alongside Preathea and Anima. Preathea being our closest celestial neighbour taking up tmost of the sky with it’s beautiful ring system, white, blue and green atmosphere. It was truly a wonder to look at in the evening light. Some say the planet is inhabited but no one really knows for sure. Just next door is Anima, our moon. It’s much smaller than Preathea. Even though from here it’s landscapes look barren, grey and full of craters it still reflects the sun beautifully back at night along side Preathea.

Eko slowed down to a walk as he turned a corner down a narrow street. The Alley was only a meter or two wide, full of wooden scaffolding hanging from the buildings on both sides. Continuing to walk down the thin cobbled side street he reached a door on his left. The door had little to be desired with half the white paint missing from the front and a small wooden plaque nailed into the top of the door frame with 9.8 etched into it. Although unimpressive to most, this was Ekos home and he didn’t mind the condition it was in. It contained all the furnishings he needed; a mattress on the wooden floor, a small cupboard in the corner containing all his clothes and next to the wall a fireplace with pots and pans spread around.

Just before entering Eko opened a wooden barrel just outside his house containing rain water he had collected. Scooping a bucket full and stepping inside his house. Eko sat down in front of the fireplace pouring the water into a pot with some rice. Placing the pot on top of some sticks inside the fireplace and lighting the sticks below on fire with flint and stone before laying down in his bed staring up at the ceiling which was now being illuminated by the warm colours of the fire he closed his eyes and fell asleep.

The smell of burnt rice woke Eko with jump.

“Shit, I fell asleep!” Eko said to himself as he got up and ran to the pot which now contained nothing but what looked like ash. “There go today’s rations.” he continued.

With the sun completely gone, Eko put out the fire and lit a lamp above his bed before laying down to go back to sleep. But just as his head hit his pillow he heard a sharp knock on the door.

“Who could be knocking at this time?” Eko pondered to himself.

He got up out of bed and carefully walked to the door feeling a chill run down his spine as if something wasn’t quite right. Opening the door slowly, it made an eerie creaking noise. Door fully open a very tall man stood all in black at the door holding a brown parcel. The man seemed very intimidating with his height.

In the deepest voice Eko had ever heard the man said “take.” as he handed the parcel over to him.

“Th…Thanks” Eko responded turning and putting the parcel on his bed.

Turning back towards the door “Who…?” Eko paused halfway through his sentence, the man was gone.

Running towards the door, leaning out and shouting “Hello!?” to no response.

He closed the door slowly turning towards the bed where the parcel now lay.

“What was that all about? What’s in the parcel?” questions raced through his mind.

Sitting down on his mattress with parcel in hand he began to undo the straps around the sides. Opening the lid there was a note at the top and a rectangle shaped wooden box below with the letter M firmly engraved into the wood. Placing the parcel on the floor while taking out the box and the letter. Eko noticed the letter had a big red crow sealing it. Breaking the seal, he saw nothing was written on the paper inside. Then a light shot out from the seal flew around Eko as if it was checking him and then flew straight into the paper as words lit up and appeared on the page.

“Eko, We have paid for your first year at Moon Nerth Academy. Please find enclosed a box containing all you need. P.s hold the crystal at 8am tomorrow morning.” at the bottom of the page was another image of a crow.

“What’s going on? I have so many questions.” Eko said.

“Moon Nerth is the top academy in the country” he continued “A strange man shows up at my door and now I have a ticket into the best academy.”

In his confused state Eko turned next to the box sat in front of him. Putting the box on his lap and opening it. There was two items inside. A crystal as the letter said and a purple 8 pointed star with the number one in the centre.

Picking up the crystal “This must be the crystal the letter mentioned. I was supposed to hold this at 8am tomorrow? I wonder why.” Eko said to himself.

Starting to get excited “I feel an adventure coming. If I can pass the Pathfinder exam I can travel the world!” placing the box on the floor.

Laying down again “ But first i’ll see if I can find that strange man tomorrow and ask him about all of this. As well as thank him.” Eko said as he closed his eyes and tried to go to sleep.

The next morning Eko woke up, Stepped outside to grab water from the rain bucket before dousing himself in it to wash. Eko looked at the clock Time (7:40am).

“Oh wow, it’s nearly 8am already. Shit I need to get dressed.” Eko thought.

Running around the house trying to get dressed while cleaning his teeth nearly tripping over at multiple points till he was finally ready. Looking at the clock (7:58am) he picked up the box and took out the star realising it was a pin. Placing the purple star on his short sleeved high collar black top he picked up the crystal and his rucksack. Time (7:59am).

“I wonder what’s going to happen at 8am?” Eko said to himself.

Eko looked at the watch on his hand and started to count down the seconds till 8am.

“Ten, Nine, Eight, Seven, Six, Five, Four, Three, Two, One, Zero…”  

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Next “Chapter Two: Class of Purple One” Also some art!

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