Jonathan’s Dream (An Adventure Novel)
(Copyright 1984, Mark D. Jones, All Rights Reserved)
Chapter Five, Part Ten
Penmarth was shrouded in shadow and gloom, as the damp, chill mist clung to the night air. No one dared venture out into the streets after nightfall ever since a feeling of dread had descended over the Kingdom of Pengarth. There were no answers to be found in this capital city or even to be had in the greater kingdom these days, only endless, unanswered questions.
The people of Pengarth had lost their beloved king to an assassin, and everyone knew it was the very person who was now manipulating the kingdom for his own, vile purposes. No one was fooled by the meddling and despotic actions of King Tucar of Nierron, yet they were powerless to prevent it and return the land back to the rule of law.
Pallamar gathered the few supplies he required, no more than he could easily carry, for speed and stealth were of the utmost importance now. Exiting the side door of a decrepit storage building on the waterfront, he made his way through the darkness to an old canoe he had positioned the night before, and began quietly paddling out through the harbor, hugging the shadows and staying away from all lights.
Slipping quietly and unnoticed out of the harbor, he continued a short way to the north to where the city ended, and the rural lands began. Here he swamped the canoe in the coastal marsh, and began on foot through the night for the foothills of the Tregarron Mountains, the border between the Kingdom of Pengarth and the Kingdom of Talgar to the north.
Pallamar’s journey was to travel west through the Tregarron Mountains until contacting the Slejuv, to enlist their aid in reaching the headwaters of the River Sojar. From there, he would travel to the one place that he knew could bring help to his people – the mysteries and enchantments of the Sylth in Sylthar Wood – where he was certain to get word to Arrydor.
It was well known to all that a pact of deception, lies and fell deeds between King Tucar of the Kingdom of Nierron and Vyanthal, the ruler of the Kingdom of Talgar, had led to the assassination of King Tyijar of the Kingdom of Pengarth. A sole survivor of the ambush returned to Penmarth to report what had happened while King Tyijar was traveling on a goodwill mission to make peace with King Tucar.
Yet, the king’s son and heir to the throne Prince Dijia, who was traveling with his father at the time, remained unaccounted for after the attack. King Tucar attempted to deceive the people of Pengarth that Dijia had died, yet there were no witnesses nor evidence to support his sinister claim. This lie was now being used as a basis for establishing shared rule over the Kingdom of Pengarth by the Kingdoms of Nierron and Talgar to ‘divide the spoils’ of the leaderless kingdom.
The people of Pengarth demanded proof of Dijia’s death, for they didn’t believe it was true, and resisted this ploy to divide their kingdom as a spoil of war with all their efforts. For they rightly believed it was war that King Tucar and Vyanthal meant to wage in Myllanthar – even enlisting King Cyulthar of the Kingdom of Dorrimar to join their axis of darkness – yet all knew he was but a puppet and a pawn hedging his bet on the outcome of this planned aggression.
It was Arrydor that Pallamar sought, for their friendship was deeply rooted. As head of King Tyijar’s Council of Pengarth and Captain of the King’s Guard, Pallamar had spoken with Arrydor on many occasions during his unexpected visits to talk with the king. Pallamar rarely left the king’s side due to the requirements of his duties, yet it was his loyalty that led him to fault himself in this hour. Pallamar only stayed behind during King Tyijar’s peace overture to negotiate with King Tucar, because of King Tyijar’s direct order to guard the city in his absence – an order he now regretted carrying out.
Pallamar had been targeted for assassination on numerous occasions since the death of King Tyijar, for his loyalty to the Kingdom of Pengarth caused him to lead the resistance against the schemes and manipulations of King Tucar and Vyanthal. Only now, as a last resort and after placing the resistance in other capable hands, he went to seek out and enlist the aid of Arrydor to save his people – if only it was not too late.
With the aid of the Slejuv, Pallamar evaded the enemies of Pengarth, and made his way along the west side of the River Sojar to the edge of Sylthar Wood. Walking boldly up to the treeline, he declared in a loud voice into the Wood, “I, Captain Pallamar, Captain of the King’s Guard and Council of the Kingdom of Pengarth, and Guardian of Dijia, the true and rightful King of Pengarth, have come to enlist the aid of all peace loving people with the help of the Spirits of Sylthar Wood. It is Of the Wind, Warrior King and Caretaker of Life that I seek – the one called Illandor, Arrydor and Myllanthyl. I come as a friend in peace to petition your aid and assistance in a time of great urgency to save my people…”
(End of Chapter Five)