My name is Kirk Louis, or at least that’s what I’ve been told. I was found in an ancient civilization called Skyrick. Skyrick is located on the highest mountains in Europe, where the average man couldn’t survive. The kingdom itself was created by dragons after the men and women of the middle ages turned against them. Ever since it has become home to countless other creatures. Only humans who are magically protected can enter without dying.
I was inside a dragon’s cave when I was discovered by a man named Eddie Stern. He was in his early sixties, had light grey hair, and was taller than most men. Though, I barely noticed any of this at that time and place, I was half dead and barely conscious. The first time I did see him clearly was seven days later in a united government hospital. Eddie introduced himself as a member of a secret organization called Legend. A group of modern day knights that were charged to protect the world from the magical, mystical, and cursed dangers that surround it.
“What’s your name, Son,” he asked me.
“I… don’t remember,” I said.
“Do you remember anything else about yourself,” asked Eddie.
“No,” I said. “I can’t remember anything.”
Eddie sighed. “Well, you look like you’re in your mid-twenties. I’ve also did a worldwide search on your thumb prints… there were no matching results. Now your DNA scan did provide some small revelations. It appears that you have magic imbued throughout your entire body. Not just any type of magic, the magic of a Dragon Master.”
“A what?” I asked.
“A person whose soul has been bonded with a dragon’s and can use their body as vessel for that dragon’s magic. Theoretically, this gives that person the most powerful magical abilities. We can use a man like you in Legend. If you join us I’ll do everything in my position to help you reclaim your memories. Deal?” Eddie extended his hand.
“…Deal,” I said.
We shook hands and then my life of mystery began. I spent the next two years training and studying my new powers. I was also given the alias Kirk Louis as a way to distinguish me from the other agents. We quickly learned that I could project fire from my hands, transport to anywhere in the world I wanted to go, and punch a hole through a solid steel door with my bare hands. The problem was trying to control these abilities. The harder I tried the harder I failed. I nearly burnt down Legend Headquarters once and after that I was ready to give up.
“I can’t do this, Eddie,” I shouted at him. “It’s impossible!”
“Kirk,” said Eddie, “if there is one thing I’m certain of its that nothing is impossible. I know this is hard, but almost everything in life worth having is! You can’t just get frustrated whenever there’s a bump in the road! You must have patience and discipline or you’ll never have control over your life!”
“It’s not that simple,” I said. “What if I lose focus and incinerate everyone around me? How could I live with myself?”
“Just give it two more weeks,” said Eddie. “I think there might be a way to control your powers and regain your memory.”
“What do you mean?” I said. “Did you find something?”
“There is an enchanted crown that belonged to a very powerful king,” said Eddie. “The King would use its powers to break any curse he wanted reversed. Since we believe that your amnesia was caused by a curse, the crown should allow you to regain your memories.”
“Are you sure?” I said. “You’re not just pulling my leg?”
“No,” said Eddie, “I’m not.”
“Do you know where it is?” I asked him.
“Yes, I believe it rests inside the tombs of an ancient Catholic Church,” said Eddie.
“Then, what are we waiting for?” I said impatiently. “We need to go get that crown!”
“The church is surrounded by Order members,” said Eddie. “We can’t move until we get approval from the Council of Representatives. Each member from each country has to vote for a decision to be made. I want to find the crown as well. I’m hoping it will lead me to another artifact of the King’s.”
“Just who was this King, anyways?” I asked Eddie.
“His name was Arthur Pendragon,” said Eddie. “He ruled the kingdom of Camelot.”
“I never heard of King Arthur,” I said.
“I keep forgetting you haven’t been in the Academy,” said Eddie, smiling slightly. “Arthur Pendragon was just a poor young man living in the Middle Ages, when he discovered a sword stuck in a stone. After curiosity got the better of him he pulled and out came the sword. Seconds later, a powerful sorcerer called Merlin appeared before him. He told Arthur that the sword’s name was Excalibur and that it was enchanted to reveal the true heir to the throne of Camelot. When Arthur removed Excalibur from the stone he proved that he was a worthy king.”
“That’s what you’re wanting the crown to lead you to,” I said. “You want to find Excalibur.”
“Yes,” said Eddie. “It’s always been a dream of mine to find that legendary sword in the stone. A sword like that could really help us in our war against the Order. Now I want you to practice using discipline to control your powers. When you’re done return to your quarters and get some sleep.”
“Okay,” I replied as Eddie left the room.
It was nightfall as I crept outside of Legend Headquarters. I gave the place one last look before teleporting away. I appeared on a tall, grassy, hill outside of the church. I took out my binoculars and surveyed the area. There were two Order members surrounding each corner of the holy ground. I would have to be stealthy if I was to get in and out of this alive. A twig snapped behind me ― I turned around and saw a man my age with blonde hair pointing a sword at my throat. He was wearing the same type armor that I was. He had to be a member of Legend.
“Make one wrong move and I’ll kill you,” said the man.
“Who are you?" I asked him.
“I am Officer Travis Williams of Legend,” he said. “Now remove your sheath and put your hands up!”
“Or I could just do this,” I said as fire began to produce from my hands. Travis jumped three spaces backwards, dropping his sword.
“You’re a Dragon Master,” he said in fear. “I thought that there was only one left!”
“You’re looking at him,” I said, putting the flames out. In moments my hands were normal again.
“Then that means your Kirk Louis,” said Travis. “I thought the Council was never going to send backup.”
“They didn’t,” I said. “I came alone to find the crown.”
“But why?" said Travis. “I thought you were on our side. You are on our side, aren’t you?”
“Yes, I’m still on your side,” I said. “The matching armor should have given you a clue.”
“Hey, I’ve only been out of the academy for three years now,” said Travis, indignantly.
“Something tells me you were a D student,” I said, smirking.
“You could have been a spy for all I knew,” said Travis. “What are you doing here if the Council didn’t send you and shouldn’t your handler be with you?”
Eddie was my handler and I didn’t need him or the Council knowing I was here. “Give me your communicator and I’ll contact him and he can tell you,” I told Travis.
“Alright,” said Travis, handing me his communicator.
The communicator melted as soon as it touched my hand, little stuff like this I could control. Travis watched in horror. “That was my only communicator,” yelled Travis.
“Be quite or the Order will hear us,” I said. “I’m going to get that crown so I can remove my powers and regain my memories! I don’t need you ruining this for me!”
“You can’t,” said Travis, trying to lower his voice. “There’s too many Order members guarding the place!”
“Not for me,” I said. “All I need to do is teleport into the tombs below the church, grab the crown, and teleport out.”
“Well, if I can’t stop you… than I’ll come with you,” said Travis, picking up his sword.
I didn’t have time to argue, in any second the Order could find the crown before me. Then I would never have my memories back. “Fine. Take my hand.”
Travis and I teleported deep into the tombs, each wall was marked with a different roman numeral. The torches on the walls were lit, giving the only light in this cryptic place. “Look around for any markings similar to the ones in this book,” I said, handing Travis an old journal.
“What kind of book is this?” asked Travis.
“It’s my handler’s journal,” I said. “I stole it from his pocket this morning.”
“That’s a breach of rule seven in the Legend Handbook,” said Travis in shock. “How could you do that to someone you’re supposed to follow?”
“Listen, we’ve been trained to basically be mystical spies,” I said. “It’s in our blood to act like that sometimes. It’s like we’re made to be weapons. So I might as well use it to my advantage.”
“I don’t want to talk about it,” I said.
“It’s not about that,” said Travis, impatiently. “Don’t you see those markings up there? On that grave!”
Travis pointed to the highest grave built into the wall of the tomb. It didn’t have any name or title carved on the outside. The only marking was crown with a sword piercing through, the same symbol in Eddie’s journal. “Good going, Mr. D student,” I told Travis.
“Thanks,” said Travis, dryly. “I was a C student by the way.”
“Yeah, that’s a big difference,” I laughed. I raised my hand up towards the grave. I was going to try to teleport the crown to my hand. I had never mastered this particular move of magic, but it was my only chance of getting it and leaving before the Order showed up. I began to concentrate…
“What are you doing?” asked Travis.
“I’m trying to get the crown,” I said, irritably.
“Are you using magic?” asked Travis. “Because I read that most Dragon Masters can ―”
His voice was drawn out by an eerie melody. I couldn't hear anything else but that tune. Then I heard someone calling my name like a soft hiss. “Kirk... Kirk...” It was coming from the grave, somewhere inside the crown was calling me. The crown wanted to be freed. I don't know how or why it happened, but the crown appeared in my hand and the calling stopped. Travis looked at me in excitedly. “You got it!” he said. “Now teleport us out of here. This place is really starting to creep me out.”
“I don't know how I could have accomplished this without your bravery,” I said. “Grab my hand and we can leave.” Travis took my free hand and I tried to activate my powers, but nothing happened.
“Why aren't we out of here?” asked Travis.
“I don't know,” I said, “my powers aren't working!”
“Did you use the crown already?” Travis asked me.
“No,” I said, “at least I don't think I did.”
“What do you mean you don't think you did,” said Travis in a terrified manner. “You're a freaking Dragon Master!”
“But even a Dragon Master couldn't teleport out of this cave,” yelled a booming voice. Five members of the Order emerged from the shadows. The man who spoke was, from what I could tell, their leader. He wore black armor like the rest, but not a mask, with a skull and crossbones engraved on it. He was bald and had a hard jaw. He and his men were all carrying swords. “This is an enchanted tomb, Boy,” laughed the man. “Merlin did it himself, the only way out is through us.”
“Who are you?” I asked through gritted teeth.
“Allow me to introduce myself,” said the man. “My name is Ocron Altiver, the man who will be killing you tonight. But I might be persuaded to make an exception… if you give me the crown.”
I didn't know what to do. I could fight, but I had no idea about Travis. If I had unarmed him in seconds, how long would he last against five Order members? I gripped the crown harder in my hand, I couldn't lose my only chance at a cure. My powers were dangerous. I didn't know how I could control them in battle. I felt a sword raise beside me. It was Travis. “Don't give them the crown,” he told me. “We got this!”
Travis changed at Ocron and his men. This is going to sound really stupid, but I followed his lead. I unsheathed my sword as Ocron and two of his men surrounded me. I slashed one in his ribs, another on his ankle, and Ocron's cheek! Travis ran his sword through both his opponents at once! We both cornered Ocron, he smiled at us wickedly. “You think you won, Half-Pints? This is just the beginning!” Ten more Order members came from the darkness. This was a fight we couldn't win, but just as things seemed hopeless... I heard a call echoing through the crown. “Use me... I can help you... I can break the spell...”
I raised the crown in the air and activated my powers, sending all my mystical energies through it. The crown glowed brighter than a thousand stars and as it faded I saw every Order member there were lying on their backs except for Ocron. He was staggering, but not defeated. I looked beside myself, Travis was on his knees. Ocron threw his sword directly at Travis! I covered my partner and teleported us away, hoping the crown had done its job!
We landed inside Eddie's office. He watched us get to our feet with a furious expression on his face. “Kirk? What in the world is going on?”
Blood was pouring down my back. Ocron's sword was sticking out of it. I fell to the ground as I lost consciousness. “Kirk!” Was the last word I heard... I felt a warm hand touch my head. I opened my eyes and saw a girl with golden skin and red hair. “Are you an angel?” I asked the girl.
The girl giggled.
“No,” she said. “My name is Mary of the Markson Clan.”
“So,” I said, “I'm not dead, huh?”
She shook her head.
“Good to know,” I said. “Where am I?”
“The Isle of Fairies,” said Eddie's voice. I winced as I sat up. I took a look around and saw that I was laying inside a giant tree. There were dozens more of golden people watching me. They all had silver wings as well. Travis stood beside me looking nervous. “You saved my life,” he said, quietly.
“Well, we all do stupid things every once in a while,” I replied. “How long have I been out?”
“Four long days,” said Eddie. “You should have followed orders, Kirk... but we wouldn't have the crown if you had. The Council sees this and has decided to reward you by upgrading your status to Level One. Congratulations, you're an official Agent of Legend.”
“I couldn't have succeeded if hadn't been for Travis,” I said. “The best C student the Academy has to offer.”
“Former student,” said Travis. “And the Council promoted me to Level 3... thank you, Kirk, for everything.”
“Hey, what are friends for,” I replied.
A big smile formed on Travis's face. “I knew you liked me! I'm going to give you the world's biggest hug, buddy!” Travis bent down, pushing Mary out of the way as he did, and threw his arms around me.
“Ouch,” I said. “You're crushing my stab wound!”
“Oh,” said Travis, his face glowing red. “Sorry!”
“Travis,” said Eddie, “can you and Mary give us a moment?”
“Sure thing, Commander Stern,” said Travis, trying his best at an awkward salute. “Marry can show me where to find some of that golden fairy sector stuff.”
“It's just called nectar,” said Mary, patiently.
“That stuff is awesome,” Travis whispered to me. “Makes you feel like you can fly!”
Mary took Travis out of the tree. Once we were alone Eddie removed a package from the nearest table and unwrapped it. He was holding the Crown of King Arthur. “I made you a deal, Kirk, and I'm here to keep my end of the bargain.” He went to give me the crown. “Take it,” he said. “You deserve this.”
I held the crown in my hand and heard its eerie voice calling to me again. I knew what needed to be done. “I can't, Eddie,” I said. “There's more to these powers than meets the eye. I couldn't have saved Travis if I didn't have them. I think I'm a Dragon Master for a reason. I will regain my memories one day, don't get me wrong, but I think I'll need these powers when I do.”
“Are you sure,” said Eddie. “You may never find another solution.”
Eddie smiled at me the way a father would a son. “I should have guessed this would happen. This kind of life grows on you when you save someone for the first time. It changes you forever. I'd better leave so you can get some rest.”
“I've been asleep for four days,” I said. “I think I've had enough rest for a life time.”
“Yes,” said Eddie, “but hearing this crown's voice has to be irritating. You must be tired of it by now.”
The eerie voice stopped at once.
“...How did you know about that,” I asked Eddie. “I thought that I was the only one who could hear the tune.”
“Oh, I can't hear the voice,” said Eddie. “The reason you can, though, is because all Dragon Masters can speak and understand magic in a way most sorcerers can't. Magical objects can send out calls to mystical beings to find them when that person is in desperate need of help. The trick is knowing which items are the ones you truly need and how to tune them out. I'll see you in two weeks to assign you your first mission. Please try not to die until then, okay? Good night.”
I had very much to think about after Eddie left. I stayed awake every night since, unable to sleep without remembering the call of the crown. The only thing that would keep me mentally stable was the face of my mystic healer, Mary.
A BAD START
My name is Jason Gardner. I am a student of the Knight Academy. The Knight Academy is a top secret school that trains teenagers to protect the world from every mythical and mystical threat out there. The school is funded by the United Government, a secret society that contains representatives from each country. Only the respective leaders of these countries know that we exist. As for the location of the school… I can't really tell you in case this message is intercepted. I will give you a hint, though, it's somewhere in Europe.
The main reason that I am even recording this is because my teacher, Mr. Louis, assigned my entire class to keep a journal of the most important events in our lives as they transpire. So, as you've probably have guessed, this is my first entry. I just want to clarify one little fact before we get started — magic is real! Every myth, fairytale, and legend you read about has actually happened at some point in history! One of the subjects here is “Advanced Spell Casting For The Gifted”. Just last week I met the most incredible Sorceress… but I'm getting ahead of myself.
It all started on day three of the annual tournament, and I don't mean some lame basketball tournament either. No, this was a sword fighting tournament. Yeah, you heard me alright, here at the Knight Academy, we practice sword fighting! I know what you’re thinking right now: how can they possibly let teenagers fight with real swords! You see, when you graduate and join up as a field operative, you'll come across some of the deadliest creatures in existence. Regular weapons, like guns, will have no effect whatsoever, because either a bullet can't penetrate their skin or they're magically protected.
This was my first time competing in the tournament. I'm fourteen-years-old and a first year a common but deadly combination from what I've been told. The only reason that I was even able to participate was because of my exceptional performance in training sessions. Still, it took weeks of convincing Mr. Louis that I was ready but in the end he agreed.
It was the final match of day, when I stepped out into the arena clad in protective armor. Every inch of my skin was covered, the only part of me that could be seen were my hazel eyes. My shield was strapped around my arm and my sword held tightly in my right hand. Blasky, my opponent, entered from the opposite side, swinging his sword in an almost bored sort of way. Our referee, Mr. Louis, stood in the center as we approached. He too was dressed in armor; it was almost awkward to see my mentor like this — ready to be opposed.
“Okay, you two,” said Mr. Louis when we reached the center of the arena, “points are awarded for bravery, skill, and quick thinking. But the only way for a sure victory is to knock your opponent to the ground. There will not be any attacking your opponent once he is down. Do you understand?”
For some reason I felt as though Mr. Louis was talking more to me than to Blasky. I decided to shrug it off. I had a fight to win. Mr. Louis stepped back and signaled us to start. I could hear the commentary begin as soon as our swords began to clang.
“The final match of tonight has officially started, ladies and gentlemen of the academy! You can see the fire in their hearts as they complete every move! Gardner strikes Blasky in the arm — Blasky counters by kicking Gardner in the chest — Blasky makes contact with his own sword this time and — ouch! That blow would bring any person to their knees — what a way to hang in there Gardner, what a way!”
The Commentator was right, Blasky's last blow had nearly brought me completely to the ground. Blasky raised his sword again, he was getting ready to deliver the final blow… I was going to lose… the pain was excruciating… I was going to be a laughing stock, a loser… I could see my grandfather waving goodbye one last time… my mother falling after being impaled with an arrow… all of my family's sacrifices would be for nothing, I would still be unable to win…
“Nooooo!” My battle cry echoed throughout the arena as I charged at Blasky, anger swelling inside of me.
The Commentator began to speak again, but I could no longer hear him. I wasn't aware of any of my movements, only that I would not be made a fool of again. My anger had completely engulfed me. I was nothing but rage. A loud thud brought me back to my senses. The sight that met my eyes made me sick inside. Blasky was sprawled on the ground, his armor torn to shreds.
I looked at my blade, it was bent from the attack. Mr. Louis had grabbed my arm, staring at me with a worried expression on his face. Medics entered and put Blasky on a stretcher.
“Meet me in the locker rooms in five minutes,” said Mr. Louis. “We need to talk after I check on Mr. Blasky…”
“Yes, Sir,” I replied. I was still breathing heavily, the aftershock of my ruthlessness pulsing through my heart. What have I done? I walked to the locker room and changed to my street clothes. I looked in the mirror and saw my dark hair dripping sweat. After a few minutes, Mr. Louis entered. His expression was grim.
“That was quite a fight, Mr. Gardner,” said Mr. Louis.
“I know what I did was wrong, Mr. Louis,” I said. “Is Blasky going to be alright?”
“Mr. Blasky has two broken arms and a cracked rib,” said Mr. Louis, “but he will be okay.”
“Sir, I am so sorry and I am ready to take full responsibility for my actions.” I pleaded with him in hopes of not being expelled.
Mr. Louis rubbed his forehead as if he had a troublesome headache.
“The truth is I suspected this sort of outburst from you for some time, Mr. Gardner. That's why you've been under close study by my teaching assistant.”
“You had me followed,” I asked, indignantly. “That's a breach of privacy, my privacy!”
“That outburst is exactly why I had you observed,” he retorted. “You have no means of controlling your temper! You nearly took another student's life today, Mr. Gardner!”
“Haven't you always said that on the battle field you do whatever it takes to survive?”
“You were not in a life or death situation!” yelled Mr. Louis. “You were in a tournament! In a real fight you would have been killed!”Mr. Louis took a long deep breath and the next time he spoke it was in a determinedly calm voice. “One day, Mr. Gardner you will graduate from this academy and become an operative of Legend. You will be sent on the deadliest of missions against the likes you've never seen and when that day comes… you will either rise to the challenge or fall to your death because of your fatal flaw.”
“…What's my punishment?” I asked.
“You will face a more skilled student in the final round tomorrow,” said Mr. Louis. “My teaching assistant, Ms. Brooks, will be your opponent.”
“A girl?” I asked, startled.
“A girl that might just be your superior, Mr. Gardner,” said Mr. Louis as he walked to the exit. “You do remember that this is a school? Be a good student and you might just learn something.” Without another word Mr. Louis left me, alone, to gather my thoughts.
I walked out of the locker rooms an hour later, I could tell that the sun had set by the darkness of the corridors. In a few minutes’ time the winter bash would start in the local village. Almost all of my classmates would be there celebrating the end of fall exams. The thought of joining them wasn't even tempting, I knew where I needed to be…
“There you are!”
A short, curly headed, teenage boy ran to my side. His name was Barry Dickinson, my best friend. “I should have known that I'd find you in the trophy room,” said Barry, panting slightly. “You always come here to think about… things.”
“I take it you saw the match,” I asked.
“Yeah, I saw — but they're not chucking you out, are they?” Barry asked me.
“It was a close call, but Mr. Louis decided to give me another chance,” I replied. “He said I'm not ready for what's out there, and that I need to control my temper if I want to survive.”
“He is right, y'know,” said Barry. “Maybe you should try talking to Ms. Markson, it might help in the long run.”
Ms. Markson was the school's counselor, almost half of my classmates were her patients. I'm sure that she's a good person and all, but her smile is almost too understanding.
“If you don't want to that's fine with me,” said Barry. “All I'm saying is that might help you more than looking at your grandfather's shield every day.”
The trophy room is the smallest part of the academy, but it also is the most important. There are few awards given to only a handful of students. The Shield of Honor was a medal given to my Grandpa fifty years ago on the day he graduated. A Hydra had escaped from a government facility and interrupted the ceremony. Gramps lead his classmates against the beast and won. It was on that day he became a true hero. I come to look at his trophy every night to remind myself of the kind of person I wish to be, not the angry monster I am right now.
“…Yeah,” I finally answered.
“Why don't we head down to the party at Duma's,” said Barry.
Duma's was the local hangout and where the main events of the winter bash was held.
“I don't know, Barry,” I said. “Parties aren't really my thing…”
“Come on, it'll do you some good,’ said Barry.
“Just five minutes,” Barry pleaded with me.
“…Alright, five minutes,” I said.
The party was just hitting its stride when we arrived. The loud music could be heard a block away, and almost everybody was dancing. This was not my idea of fun. Barry and I took a seat at a table in the corner. A waitress came by and we ordered some soda. I was sipping on orange crush, when I felt as if someone was watching me. I turned my head and saw a tall girl, with black hair, staring at me. She was naturally beautiful; this girl didn't need makeup to be pretty. I turned back and asked Barry, “Do you know who that girl is over there?”
“Who? Oh, that's Julie,” said Barry. “She's two years higher than us.”
“And she's coming this way,” I said nervously. I had never been good talking with pretty girls, they always made me nervous.
“Oooh, looks like somebody wants to make a love connection,” said Barry.
“Shut up, Barry! Whatever you do don't leave me alone with her,” I said.
“Why?” said Barry.
“You know I can't talk to girls,” I said desperately.
“Okay, I got your back,” said Barry.
When Julie reached our table she looked not at me, but at Barry. “I need to speak with Jason,” she said, “alone.”
“Okay,” said Barry, leaving the table.
“I really should have seen that coming,” I muttered underneath my breath.
“What?” said Julie.
“Nothing,” I said. “So… what do you want to talk about?”