The Dark Empire, Page 132-136 by Wolfenshire ()
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The Dark Empire, Page 132-136
The Jinn made no effort to hide their wounds or the bandages they wore, though the bandages had been changed from the blood soaked cloths from the battle with the Sherata Kingdom. Sern sat with the white tiger, Saeber, next to him. Koael sat with his leg encased in a cast from ankle to knee; his black raven sat on his shoulder fussing over him. Lord Raven and the Queen Mother sat alone with none to attend them. The Queen Mother’s right eye was covered with a patch, and the deep gash from forehead to eye only served to increase her deadly appearance. Queen Jasai also sat alone with only Lord Boae sitting next to her. The Prince Consort, Zil, and the Queen Mother’s personal Knight, Prince Raen, were conspicuously missing.
Fifteen feet behind the main Court stood the large reptilian, Tarlock Malic, the massive tiger Kabath, the winged boy, Gaevin, and his companion, a dire wolf as large as the tiger, and Farmer Seth. The younger cubs were arranged behind them. Lord Rotathian thought it an impressive display of raw power among the Jinn, but the Medo King and the Santi Governor’s expressions made it clear they were no longer impressed. Three days waiting on the beach like school boys waiting for the teacher had dampened their initial awe of the Jinn.
“I see no more Jinn today than three days ago,” said the Medo King. “I don’t doubt these Jinn children possess great power, but it is obvious that some foe over the last three days have schooled them in their limitations.”
Sern stood and shifted his form to the Black tiger.
The Medo King stood. “I’ve swam the river once at your threats, tiger-boy, I’ll not do it again.”
Governor Santi gestured for the Medo King to calm down. “Sit down, posturing will serve no purpose.” The Santi Governor turned his attention to Lord Rotathian. “Do you think us so foolish as to not see that while we cooled our heels here with nothing better to do than collect seashells, you have secured power and position for yourself among the Jinn? What treaty have you secured for us, or have you only furthered your own greed.”
“It is not a treaty that is offered, but something much more,” replied Lord Rotathian, leaning forward and holding the Santi Governor with the steel of his grey eyes. “First is a truth these Jinn would likely not prefer to give, but it has been commanded by the Aiden Emperor. However, before I can repeat the words of the Jinn Emperor, you will retract that statement or draw your sword and meet me on the field of honorable combat.”
The Santi Governor’s eyes widened with fear. He had gone too far in his anger, none could accuse the Lord Protector of self-interest. This man was a hero among the free Kingdoms, having put even the lowest farmers above his own safety.
Governor Santi bowed his head. “I withdraw my statement and apologize for offense.”
Lord Rotathian turned his head to the Medo King.
The Medo King spread his hands. “We don’t challenge your honor, Sir Knight, but we came to the Jinn’s call and found children where we need an army. The Geoggs are coming for us and they have army of a half million. What does the Jinn offer that can keep our Kingdoms from falling to the Geoggs?”
Lord Rotathian nodded. The Medo King could be a petty fool at times, but he wasn’t a coward. Rotathian took a deep breath. “What I tell you comes directly from the Emperor Aestar. Our people were the Jinn, the original Jinn. All the dead machines you see, the ancient magic that no longer works, the hint of the greatness our ancestors once knew, it was ours. And in our arrogance we committed a crime so terrible it brought the wrath of the Jinn Emperor down on us.”
The Medo King and the Santi Governor looked at each other, then past Lord Rotathian to the Queen Mother. “Is this true?” asked Governor Santi.
Moeth nodded. “It is true. You were the original Jinn and held magic more powerful than even us, and because of the crime your ancestors committed, your magic was taken from you.”
Lord Rotathian tapped on his own chest. “We were brought to this world and made to be as prisoners to serve our sentence,” said Rotathian. “Many generations passed and with our sentence served, the Jinn Emperor set us free to take our rightful place again as the Kingdom of the Aiden Jinn, but in the span of a single decade arrogance again slipped into our hearts and it was as if we had learned nothing. We committed the same crime again.”
“What was the crime our ancestors committed twice?” asked Governor Santi.
“We used our magic to pretend to be gods and enslaved hundreds of worlds,” replied Rotathian.
Governor Santi let out a low whistle. “Surely not all of us committed this crime?”
Lord Rotathian shook his head. “Not all, no, but enough. There were three Kingdoms that fought against the madness of our people, and though we were imprisoned also, not all was taken from us. The Aiden Emperor showed some mercy, and it is the reason our three Kingdoms are still free of the Geoggs today.”
Tarlock Malic strode forward to stand next to Lord Rotathian and bowed to the Medo King. “The name of your Kingdom is an acronym, it stands for Medical Officer. Your people are direct descendants of the Great Jinn Medical Officer that founded your Kingdom countless eons ago. I am a Tarlock Surgeon and would be willing to help you build a Medical University and return the magic of medicine you have lost.”
The Medo King collapsed into is chair from shock, the knowledge of his ancestors and the offer to return their magic was staggering.
Lord Raven stood next and came to stand to the other side of Lord Rotathian. “Governor Santi, your Kingdom’s name is an abbreviation of the word, Sanitation. Your Kingdom was founded by the Senior Engineering Chief of the Crystal Palace. Those Crawlers you believe are war machines were in truth waste collection vehicles, but the Senior Chief was in charge of far more than waste removal. Your people were responsible also for water, food, and drug safety. You possessed the knowledge to build dams, water works, reclamation facilities, recycling facilities, food processing facilities, and all the technology that is the blood and bones of a civilization. I offer to help you build a School of Engineering and give you back the magic to lift your people out of the cycle of starvation and disease that holds this world in its grip.”
Governor Santi turned to Lord Rotathian. “And you, Sir Knight, what do they offer you?”
“My Kingdom was founded by the Senior Nuclear Engineer of the Crystal Palace. The word Aomo shifted from its original meaning; Aomo means Atomic. My people once held the magic that makes the power to light our entire world. Their Queen Mother has offered to help us build a University of Advanced Science and return that magic to us.”
“At what cost?” asked Governor Santi. “Are we to be ruled by these children Jinn?
“We did not know of your existence,” said Moeth. “We were not calling you when you heard the cry of the Jinn. What you heard was the cry of our grief for the loss we incurred when a rival Jinn Kingdom set on us without warning. We were fleeing with our children to safety when we stumbled on your world. The injuries you see on us is the result of the justice that has now been served to that rival Kingdom.”
“Then your Kingdom is again secure?” asked the Medo King.
“Yes, though at great sacrifice. Our own Jinn King has been gravely injured, his mind shattered, and now lies hovering between life and death, but the Emperor Aestar has commanded we should offer the hand of friendship to you,” explained the Queen Mother. “We have been tasked to govern the Lands of the Jinn, with the exception of this world. We will only be permitted to remain for here for six years while our castles and palaces are prepared, however, you will govern yourselves exclusively.”
“Do you see now,” said Rotathian to the Medo King and Santi Governor. “When they came to us three days ago they were in the middle of a war. They only saw three armies assembling on the shores of their Crystal Palace and wanted to know our intent.”
The Medo King leaned forward, his eyes locked on Lord Rotathian. “I sense there is still a cost to pay for their help.”
“There is a cost, of which it is I that shall pay it for our people,” replied Rotathian. “Our people will remain restricted to this world pending my actions. I have been commanded by the Jinn Emperor to take my Knights and become the Protectorate for all the lesser Jinn Kingdoms. In this manner we are being given the chance to prove we have grown beyond our arrogance and will protect the innocent instead of enslaving them.”
Governor Santi shook his head and frowned. “So long as the Geogg still exist, the worst of what we can be remains. How are we to fight the Geogg, does the Jinn Emperor have an army?”
“He does, but he will not send it here, this is up to us to solve, with the help of our new Jinn friends,” said Rotathian.
“And where is their army?” asked the Medo King.
Moeth produced a device from a pocket and spoke into it. “Now,” she said.
Two plumes of water exploded from the ocean beyond as the Chariot of the gods and the Silver Chariot shot up from the waves and over-head. The two air vehicles caused swirling clouds of sand to rise in their passing as the roar of their engines thundered raw power. The Santi soldiers and Medo sailors held their positions in formation, but just barely. Lord Rotathian knew that Prince Raen and the Prince Consort, Zil, flew the machines above. It was an impressive display of aerial firepower.
“We also offer this,” said Moeth, motioning back at the ocean.
Three Titans emerged from the ocean, growing larger with every step towards the beach until they were on dry land and towered two-hundred and fifty feet over those below. This display was too much for the assembled soldiers and sailors and many turned and ran. Lord Rotathian also knew that Little Seth was inside the center Titan and was controlling all three of the massive robots. Lord Rotathian had already decided he would not let the Medo King or Governor Santi know that the Jinn’s secret weapons were being piloted by a nine year old Mekan boy. The Jinn’s plan was to hopefully find two more Mekan somewhere that might possess the ancient necklace key that allowed them to control the Titans.
Lord Rotathian watched Governor Santi’s eyes flick from the Titans to his squires new armor. The governor had already puzzled out that the new armor had something to do with the Titans. Governor Santi glanced at Lord Rotathian but said nothing. The Governor was smarter than the Medo King and knew it was not the time yet to let it be known they would likely be facing Titans controlled by the Geoggs.
“I will be remaining here on the mainland for three days while I choose the Knights that will be billeted at the Crystal Palace,” said Rotathian.
“I can set sail for the Crystal Palace and also provide support,” said the Medo King.
“I’m sorry, but there is a defensive barrier,” said Moeth. “If you sail further than twenty miles from shore your ships would be destroyed. It is not us that put that defense in place, and we are not in complete control of the Crystal Palace.”
The Medo King scratched his chin and nodded. “I understand, it makes perfect sense. No Emperor would give complete control over to one of his vassal Kingdoms. You will need supplies, we can set our ships to fishing and bring the catch here to the beach. Then carry the supplies through your blue portal to the palace. Would that work?”
Moeth smiled, or it might have been a smile, the scar made any facial expression she made seem sinister. “Your Majesty, I accept your offer to help with supplies, but let us not begin our friendship with political maneuvering and subtle games I don’t wish to engage in. You do not need an excuse to come see the Crystal Palace.”
The Medo King let out a deep and rich laugh. “I like you, Queen Mother, you are plain spoken. Yes, I would very much like to see the Crystal Palace.”
“As would I,” added Governor Santi.
“I will allow it,” said Moeth.