Stories : The Tale
“Haldir come look at this!” Alondriel exclaimed, closing a book she had been reading. Haldir, hearing her excitement, glanced up from his studies on the history of the elves and the early battles of the war and walked over to where she was sitting. Taking the book from her hand, Haldir muttered the title to himself “The Order of the Dragonblades: A Chronicle.”
“I’ve never heard of this Order before, what got you all excited?”, Haldir questioned her with interest.
“Well…they seem to be a noble Order of Knights focused on the blade and ways of healing. But one thing set them apart, they believed that only by working together with men could any war against the darkness be won. It seemed some of their ideals were important in the later battles of the war. All but one of the Dragonblades perished in those battles, Lady Tira, who wrote these Chronicles. She also transcribed much of the early lore of the Dragonblades, but that part is in archaic Elvish and I haven’t deciphered it yet. It seems members proved their skills by accomplishing certain Tests and then given a Dragonblade, the prized weapon of the Order, but what these Tests entailed, I still have not learned.”
Haldir opened the ancient tome, thumbing through it. “And you think the ideals of the Order of the Dragonblades may aid the elves in these dark times?”
Alondriel had no doubt in her mind, “Yes! They value honor in battle and dedication to the Order and unity among men and elves. It seems they were also even open to other races joining their numbers, though this was infrequent.”
Haldir asked her, “Well what are you suggesting we do?”
“Read more of this history and then reform the Order of the Dragonblades. There are none left now, and I think we are the only ones who know about it. We must learn and pass on our knowledge to others. We should become the Order of the Dragonblades, Haldir, you and I.” Alondriel was always enthusiastic, but her mood was extraordinary after having read parts of the Chronicle.
A feeling he could not explain, came over Haldir and he began to agree with her. Perhaps it was her enthusiasm…but maybe something more. Perhaps some other power seemed to come through from the pages of the book. A power that would guide the Order of the Dragonblades and give them aid in their days to come.
Another candle flickering and fading, finally burning down to its last. Haldir looked up from the ancient pages to see Alondriel, head on the table, fast asleep. He reached out to touch her hair - she would need all the sleep she could get in the days ahead. Neither of them could contain their excitement as they read the pages of the tome. It was as if the Lady Tira was speaking to them directly, instructing them on the ways of the Dragonblades. There were still many parts they could not decipher, transcripts from even more ancient tomes.
The wars with the orcs had sapped the strength of the Dragonblades. Their number reduced beyond repair. The coming of the undead was the final blow. Brave warriors now all long fallen in battle. The elves endured, but the Dragonblades did not.
Yet they both clung to hope. Hope that the Order might be revived. First he would speak to the Priestess of the Great Tree in Len Varial, as well as the trainers there. Their first task would be to train to become true Dragonblades. Haldir in the way of the blade, and Alondriel in the ways of healing and comfort. Both were needed in battle. But they would also need to find others. Others who would join them in their cause. Fighting in the dark places so that Leth Nurae might endure.
Haldir gently prodded her. "Come, Alon. Let’s go home."
She woke quietly, then saw his face and smiled. "I must have dozed off. What is the hour?"
"Well after midnight. The candles are nearly spent. And I cannot pry my eyes open any longer, exciting as this text may be."
They both smiled and the slowly left the library for their small home near the city.
"Tomorrow we will speak to the guild masters. I would see the Dragonblades rise again." Haldir was confident as they made their way, sleepily home.
"I know we will do it, Haldir. There is no doubt in my mind."
Haldir nodded, hoping her words were true.
"I knew some Dragonblades of old, Haldir. And though I admire you enthusiasm, you present to me only elves. That is not the ideals of the Dragonblades. If you truly want to rebuild their numbers, you must find some humans to join you. Bring them here to me, and then I will see if you are worthy of being called Dragonblades." Fethen Talia tried to console Haldir, who seemed dejected.
"Very well, Fethen. I will do as you bid, and then you will see the sincerity of my request." Haldir tried to keep from looking completely dejected.
As they left the palace, Alondriel consoled him. "Do not fret, Haldir. We will do it, I know we will. We must go to a human village I have read about, Tursh. I am sure we can find some there who would be willing to join with us in our ideals."
Haldir nodded, and smiled a little at the way she would always encourage him. "You are right. We will do it. Let us prepare for this journey. I have heard there are many dangers on the road. Bandits. We must learn as the Dragonblades of old and scout around them."
"We will do it Haldir, do not worry."
The next day they both journeyed to Tursh. Many in the village had never seen an elf before, and in many cases they were greeted by blank stares. However, three humans took an interest in these strange visitors. A stern man, Marcas, yet inquisitive and a hardy warrior. And a rustic woman, Velean, uncouth in speech yet skilled with the bow and the blade, an able scout. And finally Zyax. A tall man, and able warrior and healer, sometimes with the air of an elven warrior. But often overcome with strange visions, his eyes staring blankly at the sky. Yet these would be Dragonblades. The Founders of the new Order of the Dragonblades.
The journey back to Leth Nurae was frought with many dangers. Bandits attacked them, but they were able to narrowly escape. Haldir and Vareal gravely wounded, yet aided by a passing dwarven healer.
Yet two more would be fated to join them before the day was up. Alondriel had dreamed of one of them. A strange man, yet not a man. Seeming to blend man and elf in one person, Yudachi. Disoriented and friendless wandering the streets of Leth Nurae, they found him and befriended him. Having no memories of how he got there or of his past. Yet a Dragonblade he would be. Blending the races of men and elves as were the ideals of the Order.
Taking these humans to the palace, Haldir presented them to Fethen. "These humans I have called my friends. And of sound mind they have agreed to join the Order of the Dragonblades as it was of old."
Fethen inspected the assembled hopefuls. "Very well Haldir. I am quite impressed. I shall revive the charter of the Order of the Dragonblades and give it to you."
Fethen left for a back room and after several minutes of hunting for the lost charter finally returned waving it in his hands. "Here it is Haldir. I present it to you. Please sign here so that you are now responsible for the Order of the Dragonblades. May you fight with honor."
Haldir nodded solemnly as he signed the charter. Keeping it safe in the pocket of his inner coat.
As they left the palace, they were all exuberant, and decided to go out questing together to train their blades. The seeds were planted and soon the Order would grow.
One more they met at the Sisters Veil. A man Thirgan. Having powers of healing as well as in battle, he had seen the fledgling Dragonblades passing. Perhaps noting their excitement or solemn resolve, he was determined to join them in their cause. He would be one of the Founders and Haldir invited him to join them.
In the coming days they would have many adventures.
Worn from the long day of questing with the Dragonblades, sleep was coming quickly. Squeezing Alondriel’s hand, Haldir whispered, "We will be Dragonblades. Already we have a force of honorable warriors. We learned much, yet still have much to learn."
She smiled at him, listening to the haunting song of the elven singers, "Yes Haldir. You should be proud, proud of yourself and of the new Dragonblades. I was very impressed."
"Tomorrow I must return to the forge. I have started to translate the secret of making Dragonblades. It will be very difficult and requires great skill. The master smiths tell me I have much to learn." Haldir knew he must balance his training in the blade with his ability to make them. Others would see to making armor and the other tools of the Dragonblade. But one thing was clear to him. He would make Dragonblade. Both the knights and their weapons. Training them in battle and giving the best blades any elf or human had seen. But they must also be Tested. The best knights given the best blades. But he was sure they would all do well. And more elves and humans would be found. The most noble and most honorable.
Haldir closed his eye listening to the elven maidens singing in the starlight. Though his mind was racing, he was at peace. And slowly sleep found him, carrying him in dreams until the new day.