The Skorath Prophecy Prologue Preview

The Skorath Prophecy Prologue Preview

Elyin’Adar stood with his back to the shiny metal door. Twenty years ago, he never would have left his back exposed to an entrance. But things were different now. Gone were the days of internal bickering and backstabbing. That all evaporated when the Draconians arrived. Those savage-minded brutes callously attacked anything that didn’t bow down to them. Elyin’Adar had never seen anything like them. Their appearance was that of reptiles, and their starships resembled rough-hewn rocks flying through space.

The door opened behind him. It was his second-in-command, Tol’Kinas. “General,” he said. “I have news from Quel’Sitahr.” Tol’Kinas was a tall and skinny officer, with a sharp wit. But these last twenty years of the war had all but dispelled his sense of humor.

Elyin’Adar turned around. “Please tell me you have good news.”

Tol’Kinas lowered his head. “I’m afraid the Draconians have overwhelmed our staging post.”

Elyin’Adar sank into a chair beside a large conference table. “Then…it is finished.”

“No! We can still regroup. The Skorath—”

“The Skorath have already taken way too many casualties. If we ask any more of them, both races will die instead of just one.”

Tol’Kinas’s breathing shallowed. “You cannot be giving up! It’s not like you!”

Elyin’Adar held up a hand, signaling to Tol’Kinas to calm himself. Elyin’Adar stood and paced around the room. “My dear friend, I will never give up so long as there is still breath in me. I have spent the last two years laying the foundation of our counter-strike.”

“Then let us use this counter-strike, and regain Quel’Sitahr!”

“Tol’Kinas, you know as well as I do, that the Draconians outnumber us a thousand to one. And even with our technological advances, their superior numbers simply outlast us.”

“General, why can’t we simply use the Skorath to reclaim Quel’Sitahr?”

Elyin’Adar took in a deep breath. “We have the luxury of welding on metal plating to repair our ships. The Skorath are not so lucky. Even if we could retake Quel’Sitahr, we would still be fighting an uphill battle to regain the star systems we’ve lost to the Draconians.”

Tol’Kinas dropped to one knee. “I beg of you, please let me take the rest of our starship reserves and make one final push on Quel’Sitahr.”

Elyin’Adar closed his eyes a moment. He knew what the outcome would be. He had run the computer simulations a thousand times over. But then again, was there really any point in prolonging the inevitable? His preparations for the worst-case scenario had all been put in place. Why then was he hesitant to meet the end? He placed his hand on Tol’Kinas’s shoulder. “Let it be done.”

Tol’Kinas stood and bowed. “Thank you, General. I shall not fail you.”

“My friend, failure is beyond our control now. But go with my blessing.”

Tol’Kinas bowed again and turned to leave.

“Before you go,” he said. “Send for the Seeress.”

Tol’Kinas nodded and departed.

Elyin’Adar sat again and swiveled his chair to face the window. He stared out at the starry sky beyond. He studied each star. There was a time, he thought, when they were all colonized. Each one with a name and a culture. Now they serve only to remind us of what we have lost.

The door opened again and the Seeress entered. She was bent over with age and walked slowly. “You sent for me, my General?” she said in her old, hacking voice.

He turned to her. “The nightmare we feared, is now upon us. Are you still certain of what you say will come to pass?”

She nodded. “When the sentence of death is cast upon us, the long night will begin. And four thousand years shall not pass before a new light will arise from an uninteresting corner of space. They will rise up with ingenuity under their wings. They will frighten the star of Draconia. Even the very heart of Draconia shall tremble before them. But the tide of their rebellion shall only last a season, and Draconia shall swallow them up after a time.”

He grinned in contemplation.

She studied his reaction with confusion. “That face you make. You do not seem troubled by the prophecy.”

Elyin’Adar shook his head. “I am not. If I laid my preparations down correctly—and I think I have—I will change the ending of your prophecy. The new race that will rise up shall succeed.”

She stared in dismay. “You? Change a prophecy?”

He nodded. “I need only to aid them at the critical time. It will be a tricky business to time it correctly, and I will be long gone by the time my assistance is needed. But by The Maker, I shall speak to them as if from beyond the grave. I will empower them to do the impossible. They will succeed where we could not.”

She glared at him. “You speak heresy!”

“Call it what you will, Seeress. But though we die, through them, we will rise again. Antares will return.”

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