12 Veteran of the Psychic Wars
(From the point of view of Roberto Carmichael)
They're everywhere—mangled corpses, horrified expressions on dead soldiers, lifeless creatures on the ground, and the chaotic clanking and shouting of hundreds of men against screeching monsters outside of the confines of the empire's sturdy black walls. If the insides of Izrecael already looks like this, what other horrifying truth awaits us outside?
It's all too surreal for me to accept...
It felt just like the image I've long forgotten already during the Psychic Wars. I was only 18 then, and I'm 38 now. Well... Actually, the real name of the great war was The Siege of the Wainrith Mountain Pass. "Psychic Wars" is just us poor folks call it back then because it sounded better in the tongue.
Anyway, our youngest brother, Sulivan, Damian's father, was only 16 years old at that time. In fact, Sulivan's son was born at the start of the Psychic Wars, while the psychics were beginning to revolt against their slave masters under the banner of our eldest brother. It was horrible—too horrible. The kind of grotesque scene that no boy should ever be permitted to see; however, there we were, fighting for our lives as we were forcefully thrown between the battle of slave owners and the psychics who wish to regain their freedom. We were under no allegiance, no camps, but we still had to fight somewhere somehow if we wanted to live.
Gods, I'm rambling, aren't I? I'm totally rambling! AAAHHHH! I hate it when I start rambling, ya see! I never get to stop! This is all because of these corpses on the ground. Heck, I don't know any of these people, and I wish I knew, so I could send them off to their destination on the other side of the world with peace. However... I... Look, that guy out there who's lying on the floor beside the brick wall is literally just a torso! Do I know that man? I probably do! But will I ever be able to know him now with that... hideous state he's in! Fuck no! For all I know, that could be my cousin Jimmy from the left flank, second division! I'M RAMBLING, I KNOW! I TOLD YOU I WILL NOT STOP ONCE THIS MOUTH GOES YAPPING!
Haa... One good look around was enough for me to see that there's a severe magic battle that happened here based on the look of the corpses. Burnt bodies, the ground bulged into boulders that shields a corpse behind it, water spewing on the floor along with the blood and bile, and monster corpses on the walls that were pierced on their hearts by some kind of javelin gem.
Back then, in the great Psychic Wars, people were just beginning to understand that they can also wield magic even if they weren't born with it. The only exception is us... Long have I hated the fact that I am an exception, but I have also long found peace with it and became my own type of magician instead using the many beautiful things nature could offer.
And there were those powerful people who are born with magic imbued in their blood.
About two decades ago, the only magic that existed in the world was psychokinesis—there are no fancy poison shenanigans, elemental mastery, or healing factors. No, back then, it was all pure, unseen from the naked eyes. A person can move something from one place to another while another one can read your memories or erase and change it. It was all too simple back then without all these theories and arithmetic behind it. However, not everyone is born as a psychic back then, and not everyone can enjoy the same amount of power that the natural born psychics can enjoy.
Funny, isn't it? How life can just fuck you like that by the time you were born. I know how it feels, all too well.
What's even funnier is the fact that the ones who get to be the oppressors are the people that are not naturally born psychics!
I'm sure you don't care, but be rest assured that I also do not at all care that you do not wish to hear me rambling about the tragedies of the past. I can still remember it like it just happened yesterday, ya see! For so long, the Seven Kings of Defuntalac have forcefully taken naturally born psychics from their homes and treated them as slaves. Oh, I could remember the filthy scowl on their faces as they drag psychics by pulling their hair, and they would laugh, oh how terrible they laugh. You know the sound of laughter that just... irks your very soul itself because of how it is very much comparable to the sound of rusted doors creaking? That is what they would do while they imprison natural-born psychics.
That's why they don't care about the Carmichaels. That's right, they only ever cared about the ever so powerful psychics while they KICKED OUR ASS OUT OF THE DEFUNTALAC WALLS! Before we even knew it, we were nothing but poor sons of bitches outside of the empire, trying our hardest not to die. For the most part, all thirteen of us Carmichael brothers lived... for about a few years.
So if the psychics are so powerful, how could the Seven Kings managed to imprison them, you say? OH, what's that!? You actually don't give a shit, and you don't want to talk about this other depressing war in the middle of an actual war happening right now? Well, tough luck, buddyboy or buddygal cuz I'm still gonna explain it anyway! To do this, they locked their limbs using a powerful stone that could only be found in the mines of Defuntalac: Harandal, the stone that sips a person's mana. It has got to be one of the most marvelous pieces of alchemical creation ever conceived by men with the aid of nature. When a psychic is equipped with this stone, they would never be able to cast their magic no matter how much they tried, for the stone would take all of the mana inside of any human being no matter how long or how many those mana might be.
Cruel? Yes. But were the people okay with being blind amid such barbarity? Absolutely. They weren't as smart as you and I, you see. This is because of a prophecy that one of the Seven Kings said. Apparently, one of the gods had told them that all of the psychics are evil or something? It's all too vague, right? No one could possibly believe this! And that's why no one fucking bats any rats shit to care about any of those wannabe prophets these days like the late Edolom, poor old man.
You might be thinking... Wait, what? You're not thinking anything at all, and you just want me to stop rambling?
YOU MIGHT BE THINKING! Oh, Sir Roberto Carmichael of Izrecael, how is it possible for people to overlook such cruelty!?
OF course, no safe men now at present would condone such acts.
But everyone at that did. For almost 50 years, everyone believed the Seven Kings of Defuntalac because... well... they were the most influential nation at the time, and for the most part, at the beginning of their reign, all of the Seven Kings of Defuntalac were very generous and kind to everyone, including their neighboring countries. They were honorable and understanding, for the most part. They were perfectly sane human beings with humanitarian intentions, but for some reason, they just... woke up someday, and all seven of them are not the same kings anymore. The Seven Kings started screaming about how all psychics must die, that they are pests, they all came from the sperm of demons, and how they were all created to be below those who were not psychics.
It gets even more unbearable knowing that we are poor peasants living as citizens of Defiuntalac outside of its walls. All of us are against this ungodly slavery, but none of us can do something about it, ANYTHING! It's... suffocating.
It's even more curious because... No one in Defuntalac are naturally born psychics. That alone is another reason why the citizens of Defuntalac immediately agreed upon caging the psychics. If it doesn't personally cause them harm, then why would they not be on board with it since they will also benefit from having slaves anyway? Besides, if this empire gets to be the strongest nation throughout Luxael... surely, they weren't lying when they said that psychics are... evil. Did people oppose it? Yes! What happened to them? I don't know, but my younger brother, the one older than Sulivan, protested heartily in the town square one day against the cruelty of the Seven Kings. His name was Otis, and he was gosh darn fed up with this slavery gig when he fell in love with a psychic girl. Thus, he screamed with all his might in front of countless people about how he hated the Seven King's rule.
He disappeared the next day.
My brother was fifteen.
He was just...
Ah... Forgive the silence, I was...
So, anyway, the Psychic Wars...
The wars erupted two years after my brother's death. I remembered that I was with my brother Sullivan, waiting for his son to appear in this world when he was just a ripe age of 16 while her lover at the time was 24. None of that mattered to me then; I just sat there with my brother as he prayed to the gods for the safe arrival of his son. If stories ought to be believed, then this should be the time when Madame Belladonna was still eight years old. If I remember correctly, she was forcefully taken by one of the Seven Kings of Defuntalac, wherein she was used by that king to test the potency of different poisons. She was kept there as a hostage for eight years until she was saved. When the Psychic Wars erupted literally as the massive explosion that destroyed the palace of Defuntalac rang all over the world, I was there with my brother, watching it as he cradles his newborn son in his arms. The war lasted for five years until all of the kings of Defuntalac fell. During those five years, all of my older brothers went out to join the fight, and my younger brother and I busied ourselves helping as well. He became a blacksmith, and I became an alchemist. Everyone at that time needed to be saved.
And he did.
The man who's inside of that giant double door right now is the one who saved us along with his wife, the queen.
I hurriedly ran towards the double door, knowing that on the other side is where the king is with all of his greatest men, readying themselves to go to the frontlines once again!
He saved us back then. They saved us.
King Vortigern Frostenden of Valencia and Queen Elara Allusien of Duibhne.
You see, when the king touched the towers of Enigma back then when they were still sleeping soundlessly here, it caused a considerable amount of turmoil in the world. The young King Vortigern singlehandedly activated all of the towers that then granted every human being on Earth the power of mana! From then on, he decided that he will create the strongest empire the world has ever seen in this very soil where the towers stood! That is how the mighty empire of Izrecael was born! That day, with just a touch, the then young King Vortigern gave all men on Luxael the ability to cast the same magic that natural-born psychic wields.
One of the first persons who emerged victorious with such newfound power was the then young Queen Lara, who managed to turn the Harandal chains around the slave's limbs into fine dust in the air. Many others then followed Queen Lara's lead. King Vortigern, at the time, had awakened to his tremendous magic might and defeated all slave owners in Valencia with his best friend, Clarence Higgins, in less than a day. The people of the Mist Valley banded together under the leadership of Prince Cedric Oppenhauer to overthrow the tyranny of the then slave-loving king of Caelum. Professor Devyn Lardizabal of the Lyceum united the people of Varba, a kingdom known as a safe-haven for psychics at the time, to overthrow the kings of Defuntalac with their now stronger abilities. Lastly, my Eldest Brother, the then Captain Nathan Carmichael, killed the General he served to free all of the slaves in Defuntalac. And I'm sure you don't give a rats shit about all of these people because you do not at all know them and their significant contributions, but...
These heroes saved the world—they really did. You may not care, and that is fine. I don't ask for much, just like them. They didn't ask for anything in return; they only wish to rid the world of this evil permeating it once and for all.
If it weren't for King Vortigern's effort to unite all of these people against the Seven Kings of Defuntalac, I would still be the same boy in Defuntalac. Without King Vortigern, Izrecael will just be another empty part of the wilderness, an unused chunk in the northern part of Halavesta jungle.
All of my brothers merely looked at the scenery as it erupted throughout the world while we're all still living in the outskirts of Defuntalac, dependent solely on my eldest brother's puny wage. I was weak with no magic and no excellent swordsmanship to compensate for that. I was once nothing with no use in the world other than my subpar alchemy skills.
If it weren't for the people who rallied behind King Vortigern, Madame Belladonna would have still been kept there somewhere in a dungeon underneath Defuntalac as a poison-receiver. Worst, she would have long died.
But not anymore.
I opened the double door leading to the king's throne room with a newfound pride, excited to tell him that I at least aided in the effort to save his life, but...
What welcomed me is a bloody sight. People with crushed skulls, bodies impaled on the wall, intestines scattered all over the floor, bodies with half of their bodies missing, eyes rolling around my feet, and blood flooding the throne room. There is nothing but death in the place accompanied by the deafening stillness of the surroundings as the sun bathed the area with light coming from the huge glass window behind the throne.
All of the king's confidants, greatest generals, strongest psychics, and smartest advisors are all...
And in the middle of this bloodshed is my king kneeling before a giant man with huge bulging muscles with a gigantic sword plunged deep into his chest. I took a step back as I saw the dying figure of my king as a face of defeated agony crept upon his face. However, when I did so, I accidentally moved the double-door behind me, sending loud creaking noises all over the room. The giant man must have not realized my entrance because of the adrenaline of killing all these men, but now that he has ample time to rest, he also has enough time to sense the noise I had just made.
Then, the giant with gray, ash-like skin and long, ragged, dark-crimson hair with only a cloth around his waist slowly raised his enormous bloodied black sword, which is longer than the tallest human I've known and bigger than the chubbiest person in my memory. When he did so, it ripped right into the king's chest up into his head until it burst into nothingness as if his skull was just a ball with red liquid inside of it.
I then tried to take something inside of my bag, but before I could even do anything, I saw the gigantic gray giant throw the pointed area of his huge black sword right towards me, and the last thing I saw...
... was the image of that thing headed towards my head.
THAT'S WHAT I WOULD SAY IF I DIDN'T DODGE. HA!