The Old King - Prologue

Prologue//>

Once upon a time, in fact, not a time so long ago, quite recently actually, there was a man who could be called a king. He lived in a great metropolis that he both called sanctuary and home, that he both resided and ruled. The people cared for him, and he cared for his people. Many of these individuals he both called subjects and friends. Life was plentiful, the city was wealthy beyond imagination, and he was loved by everyone.

This, however, would not last.

One fateful day everything was ripped out of his hands.

His wife was "exiled", his daughter and son kidnapped, his most loyal friends presumed dead and buried, and the city turned against him due to outside forces; Forces that were jealous of his power and influence throughout the continent. Even though he never endeavored to find wealth and power, it's brutal side-effects found him.

These unhallowed individuals sought him out and took all this away from him.

By the time all these events were said and done, in the matter of a day, he too perished, thrown from top of his glass tower to the streets below.

When he landed, the future of his city, the hope, the prosperity, the happiness, the promise of a truly momentous city indeed, died with him.

The burial that he had always hoped for never happened...

His lifeless body was paraded throughout the streets like a trophy for those who had stabbed him in the back. The people mourned for him as the only way they could; quietly, and hidden from those who had taken the city through their injustice.

Eventually, his corpse was let down and left to rot in the sweltering promenade in the center of the city. Not one evil soul who now ruled cared to even look at what was left of his form.

The people who loved him, though, and the citizens that he cared and loved over so much, they took his body, and silently buried him on the mountain that overlooked the city; The city that he always loved as if it were his family. After the ceremony, while everyone mourned him endlessly in their hearts, no one would show any outer sympathy. The populace made themselves masks to hide the status of their hearts.

Evil and unjust as the new leadership was, they immediately tore everything down in the city that might remind them of the ruler that they had betrayed. Citizens were arrested for so much as muttering his name under their breath. His very existence became illegal to acknowledge.

The Old King's wife was eventually forced to come back to the city, to see with her own eyes her husband's grave. With the aid of the people who had loved him so, she was secretly escorted through the city in the dead of night, and brought to the grave that he occupied. She was filled with so much rage and sadness, she became overcome with insanity and fled the city that same night, to where no one knew or still knows.

His children, several years later, were found to be living their own lives in other parts of the world. The citizens had forged their "kidnapping" while the city was being taken over, just in an effort to keep their hearts beating. Since they were so little, however, they had no memory of who their parents were, or even the origins of where they were born.

It was as if the Old King's existence had been completely wiped out, and the unjust who now led a notorious city of ruin had won.

This would all still be true, if it weren't for one little fact that eluded them.

The Old King once had a life before being king.

He had friends that he had separated ways with long ago, for the safety of his family.

Friends that weren't ones to be trifled with.

Friends that he had contacted by him mere moments before his death.

And it was because of this, because of this gentle king's dark, brutal, and dangerous past, that these friends would respond in kind with the powers that they wielded.

During a rainy monsoon night, in the hard soil of the desert, and finally breathing desert air after so long away from the world that he knew and loved, the Old King reached a rejuvenated hand out of the clay and earth, and took in a fresh, deep breath.

His first thoughts from the grave:

What an appropriate name for such a city...

Phoenix.