RunTime The Swift
In mid-summer, on a bright and sunny day, in the middle of the bay near Portland, the water started to boil and foam. A cold dark fog arose from this spot and made its way towards the banks. The thing that made everyone stop and watch was that the fog made its way towards the docks in Portland even though the wind was blowing against it. It covered the docks with a thick dark cloud. Then, just as suddenly as it arose, it disappeared leaving a lone Draegoni standing upon the docks. Upon his head he wore a beaten up crown, upon his chest he wore scratched and damaged steel armor. At his side was belted a stained cutlass, on his arm was a beaten and broken titanium shield.
The Dreagoni looked around and saw all the people staring at him. He knew he must look strange to these people. He walked into Portland ignoring all the strange looks from people. He headed through the crowded streets towards the local tavern, a place from his past where he used to come to have a few ales and visit with friends. The bartender in the Tavern, Laura, was a long-time friend of His. He entered the dark tavern and stopped by the door until his eyes adjusted to the darkness. Inside the tavern they had a few elves and dwarves sitting at tables and at the bar that ran all along the right side of the tavern. He walked over to the bar where few people where seated, and sat on a wooden bar stool.
He waved Laura over. Laura acknowledged him, and after pouring and handing an Elf her drink, she walked over. "What can I get for you, sir?" she asked, oblivious to who he was. The Dreagoni just looked at her, she looked into his face, and a bright smile appeared on her face. "RunTime! Is it really you?" she asked in an excited voice.
"It is. It has been a long time," he said with a slight smile growing on his face.
"Where have you been? What have you been doing? We all thought you died! It is great to see you again!" she said with a jublilance rarely seen in a tavern.
"I will have to answer those questions later. I want to meet up with my old guild mates first. Have you seen Cloud or Sephiroth?" RunTime asked her.
The smile faded from her face and cast her eyes towards the floor, "I hate to be the one to tell you this RunTime.......well Sephiroth and Cloud are gone, so is their father. They left much in the same way you did. But unlike you.....I doubt they will be coming back," she told him in a quiet voice, not taking her gaze off the floor.
"What! How could this be? It does not make any sense! What of KOTR and the rest of my friends?" RunTime asked with awe and shock and to his surprise anger in his voice.
Still looking at the floor she said, "The Knights of The RoundTable are no more.....After Bruce, Sephiroth, and Cloud left, the guild fell apart. Everyone else left and established another guild. Their guild is called Keepers of The Flame."
RunTime sat there, awe shocked, for several minutes - just sitting there staring at his hands. After a long while, RunTime looked up at Laura. "This is a dark day. I must go and discover this for myself. I just cannot bring myself to accept it without seeing it for my own eyes." RunTime stood up and stormed out of the Tavern and turned toward the storage in Portland.
RunTime pushed his way through the crowded streets, ignoring all the curses and protests the people cast his way.
He ran right into the storage and asked for the stuff he had left behind. The storage keeper did not believe that he was who he said he was and would not hand over the belongings. RunTime grasped the storage keepers tunic and lifted him onto his toes, "Either hand over my belongings or I shall implant my ring into your forehead!" RunTime threatened raising his fist even with the storage keeper's head. He looked from the ring with its sapphire in the center with four letters on it 'KOTR' to RunTime's face. He knew this was no idle threat. He reached his hand behind him and pulled out a box. The Storage keeper held the box out to RunTime. RunTime grabbed it with his free hand and let the storage keeper go. He crashed to the floor and RunTime turned and ran out of the storage.
RunTime opened the box and searched through his belongings until he found what he was looking for: a green magic ring. He took the magic ring and slipped it onto his finger. Everything swirled around him until he found himself standing in the middle of Emerald Valley in Irilion.
He ran with all his strength through the forest towards KOTR's secret guild hall entrance deep in the heart of Emerald Valley's forest. When he approached the hall, he saw that the door was ajar. He ran into the building and stopped dead in his tracks just inside the door. Tables were turned over on their sides, papers were strewn about, and cots where he once had slept were thrown over. RunTime fell to his knees. How could I have left and let this happen? He thought to himself. If only I had been here. I could have changed how things turned out.
RunTime sank to floor and stared at his hands, not moving. A single tear rolled down his cheek. Finally, RunTime stood up and walked over to the only table left standing. He looked down at the Signet ring upon his finger. He pulled it off, placed it on the table, and walked out of the door.
When RunTime stepped back outside into the light, he saw a sight he had not expected ever to see again. Standing there outside was Korrode and Llynara, two good friends he had known in KOTR so long ago.
"We heard you were back," Llynara said.
"We almost didn't believe it," Korrode finished.
They smiled. Llynara stepped forward and gave RunTime a hug, then she stepped back and let Korrode walk up to RunTime. Korrode reached out and they clasped arms. Smiles grew on all their faces. Korrode took a step back and put his hand into his pocket and pulled something out and held out his hand palm raised towards RunTime. Lying in the center of his palm was a ring with a red gem set into the middle. Set into the gem were three letters: KTF. It was a Keepers of The Flames signet ring. RunTime looked from the ring to Korrode and then Llynara.
I welcome criticism/comments. I want to thank Phildaburn for editing it and helping me out. I also want to thank Annatira for all her help.
Edited by RunTime, 22 December 2007 - 05:41 PM.