God Forge: Forge of the Mind (book 1) [draft 2]

Final Component

One fine spring morning, Angon and Hero sat atop Citadel Belltower. They had decided to stay for a few ten days in order to research as much as they could about the Blood Tomb and the War of the Ten. Buster helped with the research of course, but despite all they had learned, they still felt much in the dark.

“They’re still out there…” Angon murmured, staring off into the rising morning sun.

Hero, who was lying next to Angon, lifted his head and regarded his friend. “The three liches you mean?” Hero asked.

Angon nodded. “Yes. Reischerr, the one we faced in the Cavern of Creation was the weakest of them, apparently. And he was powerful.”

“You’re strong.” Hero said. “You defeat even a god.”

“The avatar of one.” Angon reminded the druid. “The true Torchwood could be, and likely is much stronger.”

“Well at least no one else will be summoning gods to the world.” Hero nodded. “Rest at ease for that much.”

“It is for a time.” Angon said. “We have some peace. But I’m sure the Lich Brotherhood will find another way. Do not forget the gods were able to destroy Angel’s Outpost and Triden’s Gate without actually entering this plane.”

“Don’t worry, my friend.” Hero said. “I’ll stick by your side through it all.”

Angon smiled; for he and the druid had grown quite close in the time they had spent together. Perhaps it was because they both knew very little of the world, and had many questions, or maybe it was because they were both orphans in their own way.

The bell high above them began to ring, causing Hero to nearly jump out of his fur.

“What in the abyssal bat maws?” Hero cried out.

Angon laughed. “You sound like Buster.”

The wolf shook his head. “I have sensitive hearing!”

“Remember, it means someone has arrived outside the Citadel’s Gates. Maybe it’s Lavina and the Gavin!”

“Oh!” Hero jumped up, wagging his tail. “Let’s go see!”

The pair raced down the stairs and into the halls below. They rushed past the throne room of King Belltower, and past many dwarves. When they arrived at the front gates, the drawbridge was being lowered, and a dwarf stood off to the side turning the huge crank.

“Who is it?” Angon asked the gatekeeper.

“Not sure.” The dwarf said. “From up above it looked like a lass wearing armor.”

“Armor?” Angon frowned. “Then it isn’t Lavina.”

When the drawbridge was fully lowered, Angon and Hero walked outside. Indeed there was a woman in armor at the far end. She started walking towards them, and right away Angon noticed something rather strange.

The woman was covered from head to toe in steel plating, except in certain places it hugged her contours. When she came closer he could see that she had yellow orbs for eyes.

“Hail!” The woman said as she walked up to Angon.

His mouth hung open as he realized he was staring at a female forge.

“H-how?” Angon stammered. “W-who are you?”

“My name is unit number zero zero two.” She said. “Or you can call me Nogna.”

“Nogna?” Hero cocked his head. “That’s Angon backwards.”

“It is.” She said. “I assume you are he?”

Angon nodded, feeling very confused. “How are you… who created you?”

“An artifice named Azteron created me one hundred winters ago.” Nogna said. “I have been searching for the one known as Angon ever since.”

“You found me.” Angon said.

The female forge grinned. “It is good to finally meet you. I was created to be your companion; your wife so to speak… and more importantly to train you.”

“W-wife?” Angon stuttered again. “To train me?

Nogna put her hands on her hips. “Yes… for the War of the Forge.”


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