Prologue: Depths

In times of old, it was said that a great city floated upon the sea, and in it were many gardens and palaces. The walls were guarded heavily, and the Kings and Queens reigned through ages untold. The city was fabled throughout the continents, and those who journeyed from the mainland would not be disappointed with what they found. A great many voyages were sent both to and from the city, exploring the world (for in those days all knew that the Earth was as a great globe, and no one doubted this) to see what other wonders would be found elsewhere. And the name of the city was Atlantis.

There was another city, nearby, that was less revered. It’s name was Tur Tuvish, and the people there were despised. They had no more evil than the peoples of other lands, but their rough speech and customs were seen as primitive and vile.

One among them was named Ukkelur, son of the Goodlady Uiness Dugleir and her husband Kanick, a leatherworker. He was born at an early hour, and the midwives were fast asleep and were not able to be roused in time. The birth was hard and long, and when all was finished Goodlady Uiness had spent all her strength. As she held Ukkelur in her arms and felt the darkness close in, she whispered a promise of hope that none but she and the child could hear. Then, with regret in her eyes, she passed into her final slumber. And Kanick cried aloud, saying, “This child, even before he was half a minute old, has taken the life of a great woman, yes, even his own mother. How much more destruction shall be wrought by him? Upon this house, none.” With these words, he took the child and cast him out into the many beggars that waited for a piece of silver outside the house.

Among them was Ukkelur raised, a different world from the relative wealth he was born into. And a woman named Dlaud, who was sitting in the street on that night, raised him in the way of a common thief. Never was he told of his lineage, though he did ask. Always her answer was this: “You were sent from the waves, the stars, and the ground.” For many years he was content with this answer. When Dlaud became old and died, she told him only a little more, that he was sent also from the stormcloud. This gave him little comfort or resolve as the only mother he had known passed into her own final slumber.

Ukkelur grew to full age, and found for himself a wife named Kield. She was fair and beautiful, and many wondered if her lineage had not come from Atlantis. Ukkelur gave her a circlet of silver, for it was abundant in Atlantis, yet not so in Tur Tuvish. It was a thing of beauty, many fine strands woven tightly so that at far sight it seemed like one rod, bent into shape. In the weave were patterns, the shapes of leaves and flowers, and it was said that these patterns would protect the bearer from any death, except by old age. The circlet came to be known as the Moonplait.

The decades passed, and they both grew old with their only daughter, Ullead. She grew up learning the saying that Dlaud had often repeated, “You were sent by the waves, the stars, the ground, and the stormcloud.” When her mother and father were sent to final slumber, she was given the circlet, and became the wife of a charming man, whose name was Trachvant. Ullead was deceived by his charm, and did not see the greed inside his eyes. When she bore a son, they moved into a small house to keep the child safe. Trachvant convinced Ullead after a while to let him keep and defend the circlet from evildoers. And it was in this manner that Ullead perished, for unknown to any, she had a fatal illness of the blood, and only the Moonplait had protected her. Trachvant wept, for even through his greed he had loved her in small ways. And he gave unto the child (now 8 years of age, yet without name) the circlet, saying, “Perhaps only the innocence of a child can wield this accursed treasure.” With these words he cast himself upon the nearby shoals.

The child had intelligence beyond his years, and realized that many would question his solitary life with no parents, and devised in his mind a story that they were extremely ill, and could not be seen, and thus allayed suspicion. He called himself Udoeth, which meant Wise in the tongue of Tur Tuvish. Many laughed to see this child call himself by such a presumptuous name, but after years, they forgot him, for the house was far outside of the city and he seldom visited.

He grew his house to a farm, and after a long while he hired an orphan boy from the city to help tend the crops in his old age. But he never told the boy of the Moonplait. Now in the field was a place where a star had fallen and left a crater. It was in a place such that a storm and high tide together would fill it with water. Here in this place Udoeth buried the circlet. The only clue as to the location he carved on a small stone, and he wrote the saying passed along unto him from long past, “You were sent by the waves, the stars, the ground, and the stormcloud.” He carved the same on a much larger stone and set it at the place where the circlet was buried. And on his deathbed, he gave the hired boy the small stone, and named him his only son and heir.

In much the same manner the stone was passed down through the generations, until a great war broke out between Atlantis and Tur Tuvish. Evil fires and great machines were used by both sides, until the great islands were demolished and sunken deep beneath the oceans. And the weapons used were lost to time. The only survivor of this war to escape to the mainland was the current bearer of that small inscribed stone, and her name was Ukshesh.

Through countless generations it was passed down, and even was not lost until this day.

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