Sparrow stood there in shock and horror as he stared at the lifeless body of his sister Rose on the floor of the seal in Lucien's chamber. Her blood was slowly covering the seal, it looked like a little river of blood moving in every curve and dip on the seal itself. He couldn't believe what he was seeing with his own eyes, his sister, the only person that he had left in his life after his parents died, the person that made him feel safe, the one who kept him fed when they barely even have a place to sleep, the only person that could make him feel like everything was perfect even when he knew it to not to be….she was dead, gone before he could even say something to her...or even see her when she was still alive for the the last time.
Tears started to fall to his cheeks as he kept looking at her,
"Rose.." he whispered as his lip started to quiver and as he tried to hold himself from crying out loud.
Lucien who was behind Sparrow, aimed his Steel Flintlock Pistol at the teary eye boy, with smoke still coming out of the barrel from the shot that was for Rose.
"I can't let you live either," he told the weeping Sparrow with a determined but also hesitant voice.
"You killed her…" Sparrow whispered with anger and hatred in his voice, "We trusted you...and you murdered her!"
Lucien lowers his eyes to the floor but keeps his pistol aimed at the boy, as he hears what Sparrow yells at him with a blood curly sound to it; Soon he looks back at him.
"I'm sorry." He tells him before pulling his finger on the trigger and shoots Sparrow right through the chest, which the force of the shot pushes him to break the color window behind him.
For a moment, Sparrow felt like everything was in slow motion, as if the world itself froze in shock of what had occurred at that very moment. He could see all the colorful broken pieces of glass that came from the broken window of the castle, almost floating in the air as if they were caught by invisible spider webs. Then he saw Lucien, who was slowly withdrawing his pistol as he stared back at Sparrow with his greyish blue eyes that seemed as though they were avoid of any life if at all.
Then suddenly it seemed time continued, he felt that he was falling towards the ground through the air, like a bird with an injured wing falling from the sky. He felt the cold air passing by him as he fell closer and closer to the ground, before he hit the hard stone streets with loud and bone chilling crack; so loud that it could be heard throughout the entire neighborhoods close to the Fairfax Castle.
Sparrow tried to gasp for air, but the pain of trying to do so was too much for him, so stopped from trying to take in another breath. He could feel his own blood spreading out to his arms and legs, feeling warmth of his blood before he felt the cold and hard stone streets he laid on, soon he couldn't feel the warmth of his own blood anymore. All that he could feel now was a terrible dead cold feeling covering his body, as if he was stuck in a heavy pile of snow from a monstrous snow storm; and soon he slowly closes his eyes, then he felt nothing and could
only see darkness of pure black.
Sparrow felt a light breeze hit his face as he started to wake up and slowly opening his eyes, at first all that he could see was the blinding brightness of light but soon he could see his surroundings. He was no longer in the streets of Bowerstone anymore, he was in what seemed to be in a small forest that was right next to a side of an mountain; he saw to his right a small of pile of broken sticks in middle of a row of bushes that were against the side of mountain, to his left he saw the dark woods of a forest with a trail that had two trees in middle that was the only thing that separate Sparrow from bring in the woods. He also noticed that he didn't feel the pain at all from when he got injured, in fact he saw that he didn't even have a speck of blood on him.
He started to wonder if maybe what happened at the Fairfax Castle was just nightmare he had but that wouldn't explain why he was now in a forest and not back at Bowerstone, then he began to think maybe it did happen and that he was just in the afterlife; but if so, where is Rose or his mother and father? they should be here too. Suddenly he felt that he wasn't alone and turned around behind him to see if someone was there, he saw what looked to be an old man in full steel body armor sitting on a rock staring down at a small creek that went from mountain down to the two trees in the middle. Sparrow slowly stood up and walked over to the old man to ask to see if he knew of anything of why he was here, as he got closer to the old man he could the short messy white hair he had that would hang over his face near his eyes, he also saw that he had what seemed to be bright blue lines that were on his face and neck, he thought that probably they cover his his entire body and he wondered why he had them; he thought maybe they were just tattoos but it was clear that they were something else.
At first Sparrow said nothing to the man in front of him, he just stood there staring at him as he kept looking down at the moving water of the creek, the only sound that could be heard was the ripples and babbles of water moving through the small creek in front of them.
"This is the Hero's Guild woods," the old man said as if he knew what Sparrow was going to ask him, "peaceful isn't it? Many great heros came here to train, to meditate, I first began my hero's journey here," he looked up into the sky watching the clouds slowly drifting by, "and what journey it was." He said with a small smile on his, thinking about all the moments on his journey of the good and of the bad as well.
"Who are you?" Sparrow asked the old man. Slowly the old man turned around to the short young boy behind with a smile around his white bread.
"I am Pilgrim Hero of Oakvale, and I'm your ancestor" these words shock Sparrow immediately and mostly make him trip over a rock that was behind him as he stepped back. He heard of the hero in a ruin book on the streets of Bowerstone called "The Hero of Oakvale", he remembered reading of him, about his beginnings, how he lived in Oakvale before living in the Hero's Guild after a bandit raid killed most of the villagers and his father. He began a hero in his teens, and slowly became a big hero in Albion, saving hundreds of lives, slanging the great White Balverine in the town Knothole Glade, winning in the Arena and sparing the life his fellow hero whisper after they battle, becoming the Mayor of Bowerstone and not once but beated the Jack of Blades twice by himself.
Sparrow couldn't believe this, he had the same blood as the greatest hero to ever live but then wondered since he was here and the hero has been dead for hundreds of years, was he himself as well? "Am I dead?"
"No, you're still quite alive," the old man reassured Sparrow. "As we speak you are sleeping in a bed and far away from Fairfax Castle, you're safe."
"What about Rose?" Sparrow asked with a concerned voice wondering if his sister made it out as well, Pilgrim's smile slowly lessened as he looked at the boy that had hope was true.
"I'm sorry Sparrow... she's gone." His voice saden to give the news to the young boy, Sparrow looked down to the ground as he started to cry before dropping down to his knees near Pilgrim. The man put a hand on the boy's back to try to give some comfort, he understood how he felt and how it feels to lose an older sister at a young age. After a few seconds Sparrow stands right back up and wiping away his tears, sniffling as he rubbed his hand against his nose.
"Pilgrim," Sparrow said as he kept looking at the ground, the old man gave him a hum as response. "Why am I here?"
"Because like me, your journey begins here," he told Sparrow with a pound smile, pulling his hand on Sparrow's shoulder. "It is your destiny to do so, but how you choose to take this journey and it's many paths are up to you. To take the side of good or to take the side of evil, to be selfless or selfish, to help others or leave them behind is all your choice," his voice got more deeper and his face more serious as he continued.
"There will be hard choices that you will have to take, you will go through hardships, you can find love and make a family, you can be the person that people look up to and villains could despise your very being, or be what people fear and have villains praise you...but most importantly you will be the one to stop Lucien from getting the power that he wants and stop him from destroying all of Albion."
"...how?" Sparrow asked confused with everything that was said, "how am I supposed to stop Lucien, if he will be so powerful to destroy Albion how will I stop him?"
"That, is something I cannot tell you," Pilgrim sat up from his rock and looked down at the boy, "you will have to find out by yourself, I'm afraid to say." Pilgrim's head perked up quickly as if he heard something before quickly looking back to Sparrow.
"It seems we don't have much time left, you will awake in a few minutes." He told Sparrow before standing up and walking to path that leads of the woods.
"W-wait, I have so much more to ask!" Sparrow distresses, reaching out his arm to catch up to Pilgrim.
"Don't worry, this won't be the last time we meet, but it won't be anytime soon I'm afraid," Pilgrim reassured him giving a wide grin that seemed a little too big in Sparrow's opinion.
"The legacy of our family now continues with you Sparrow, I know you will be the greatest of us all," slowly a beam of light grew behind Pilgrim, it started to engulf Pilgrim in it's bright heavenly light and Pilgrim slowly became less visible as the beam grew behind him.
"I know you will.." before he was absorbed by the light he gave a wide grin of smile that seemed to calm Sparrow for a moment, he slowly smiled as well feeling warmth and comfort from the small gesture of the old man. Sparrow felt a sudden wave of tiredness overtake him, he eyes slowly and calmly close as he took a deep breath and as he exhaled everything seem to stop; he didn't hear the singing of the birds, the moving of tree's leafs, the platter of creek, the smell of woods, the fresh air of mountains, nor feel the breeze of lite wind passing by him, there was nothing at all.
Sparrow felt something strange touch him, he soon realized it was his face being licked by a tongue of something or someone. He opened his eyes to see the friendly and slobbery smile of the dog that he saved from the bully back at Bowerstone, when the dog saw that Sparrow was awake he quickly dropped his paws to the ground, wagging his tail and happily barking to show his excitement.
"Hey, I'm happy to see you too." Sparrow said with a laugh as he place hand on the dog's head giving him rubs and scratches. Sparrow slowly sat up from the small bed he was sleeping on before, you didn't know how long it's been since he slept in an actual bed and comfortable one at that. He looked around his surroundings to find he was in some type of wagon, it was littered with books with all sorts of different languages on them everywhere and bottles filled with weird colored liquid in each one.
He soon heard the sound of a creaky door opening at the other end of the wagon and an old brown hair woman stepped in, his eyes widened in surprise as he realized who the lady that convinced Rose to buy the music box back at Bowerstone. It figured out that the wagon must be her's but he didn't understand why she would bring him here, or to why she treated his wounds?
"Ah good, you're awake," the old woman said as she walked over to Sparrow placing her hand over his head to check his temperature. "And you don't have your fever anymore it seems."
Sparrow looked at her eyes and saw that her Iris were depleted of color other than blinding white, they seemed to be the eyes of a person who died long ago. He also notice she wasn't looking at him or anything in particular but just looking straight ahead as if they were stuck in place, he soon realized that she was blind but then he wondered how she can walk so clearly and act like she can see everything around her.
He decided to ask her a question as she moved her hand away, "How long have I been here?"
Old lady didn't answer his question for a moment as she stood up and away from the bed, "For two days," she simply replied.
"Why am I here?"
"I took you here so that I could treat your injuries and so that you would be far away from Bowerstone so that you could be safe from Lucien. I also brought your little hairy friend here as well" she told him as a matter of factly as she pointed to the dog who was laying his head on the side of the bed.
"Why would you do that for me?" Asked curious as to why she would even do any of this in the first place.
"Because I want to help you with stopping Lucien's plan," this raised Sparrow's curiosity even more and he wanted to ask her more questions but before he even say a word, she interrupted him. "I know you must have a lot of questions you want me to answer and I will in all good time," she said reassuringly as she gave a small smile to the boy. "But for now you must rest and regain your energy for tomorrow, for I will teach you how to become a warrior." She turned away from Sparrow and started to walk over to the door.
Sparrow quickly panicked as he quickly stood up on the bed which caused the dog to raise his head and bark as he wagged his tail in excitement. "wait!" He shouted, she stopped as she was holding the door handle. "Just please tell your name before you leave.." he asked politely.
The old woman paused for a moment as if she was processing his question carefully, she slightly turned her to look over to him and she kept her body facing the door, "It's Theresa," she told him with a calm but cold voice which brought chills to Sparrow for a moment. She continued by asking him lay back down and to get some rest which the young boy agreed to oblige, and by the time he laid back down she had already left her wagon and outside.
Sparrow looked up at the ceiling, thinking about all the things that had happened until this moment. All pain he experienced from losing Rose to Lucien which he vowed to himself that he would make Lucien pay for what he did to them, but he also realized the little good that he experienced as well. He got to meet Pilgrim the Hero of Oakvale and learn that he was his ancestor and he helped Sparrow to feel better in himself as a person, and in hope of his future by telling about the journey that he would soon take. He was taken care of by Theresa as she healed him and kept him safe from Lucien's clutches, though he still wondered why she is so willing to be doing all of this for him when it seems she doesn't get anything out of helping him, or maybe she does and he just doesn't know it yet.
The dog started to lick his hand which caused him to snap out of his train of thought. He smiled at the dog as he started to scratch the back of the dog's ear, which caused the dog to lean his head into it as it must've felt good for him. Sparrow gave a small chuckle as he looked at the dog that was clearly enjoying scratch.
Sparrow then looked out at the window that he noticed that was right next to him, seeing a large forest to the left before seeing the city walls to right. He stared at them for a while enjoying the beautiful scenery before him, how green and lively everything looked, compared to the grey and cold looking streets and buildings of Bowerstone. As he slowly closed his eyes and he started drifting to a feeling of peace, he thought of something that Pilgrim told him during their time together.
Your journey begins here….