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The Tale of Dark Mage Faust

By @Raguna

Day's Beginning

It was three in the morning and the castle grounds were all but filled with the silence of the breaking of dawn. The guards were ending their night shifts and the royal family was in pleasant slumber. Really, everyone who was awake at this point was just veering into the next plane of consciousness. Everyone except Faust, the only one crazy enough to skip breakfast, lunch and dinner just to find out all the healing properties of various herbs and memorizing them for future reference.

‘’Well… I think I can chalk this up as another lesson in the pursuit of knowledge. Gotta start unraveling all the secrets of the universe one step at a time.’’ He said pleased

Flashing a grin to himself, the young man was satisfied with his results from eight to four in the morning he had been studying voraciously and putting the wide amount of local fauna to the test to discover their properties. Numerous amounts of concoctions, potions, and crumbled up paper remained scattered around the lab unattended but he didn’t seem to mind the clutter. His tests had come to fruition and in his research notes he had done a complete diagnosis of 14 local and 17 uncommon plants with 22 others partway to completion. Nothing could have made him happier when he revised it all and put it inside his cloak, but for now he had to do some clean-up or else end up misplacing important data somewhere in the piles of useless notes around him.

 Alas, there was something impeding his activities for the minute he stood up he fell swiftly to the floor. An odd pang of indescribable pain roared from his stomach and as he readjusted his glasses he slowly mustered the strength to stand up and look around knowing now what exactly had happened.

‘’Yeah… shouldn’t have missed out on that meat stew… however science must move on! Life without the union of oxygen and hydrogen would not exist and a scientist without a question is blasphemy! Still… I better get a sandwich or something before I find myself turning into nutrients for the plants.’’

Before going on a voyage for that precious sandwich, the man decided to clean up his desk for a possible future experiment not fully knowing that a small black creature was watching him from the ceiling. Its eyes were red and it seemed to merge with the shadows as it closed in on the young man until finally popping right in front of his desk

‘’Mefi, mefi!’’ it replies

‘’Mephisto is that you? How long have you been watching me’’ he asks          

‘’Mefi!’’ it quickly jumps excitedly

‘’Whoa, since yesterday evening… sorry about that little buddy; I should have kept a better track of my time.’’ He uttered

Now in full view of a nearby candlelight, the creature had a cute bunny like appearance and looked harmless. The young man himself did not feel daunted as he patted the little creature on her head and gave it a smile with the creature itself becoming glad of the action and doing its signature sound. The young man even seemed to understand it!

‘’Now let’s go find ourselves something to eat. Hopefully, there’s some portion we can still salvage for ourselves.’’ He expressed with hope

After organizing his notes for the day, Mephisto sat on his head and pulled up his cloak to hide herself in between it. The little creature went quiet, but he knew full well she was still there; it had been a long night and he was sure she was just as tired as he was.

Their little trek from the laboratory to the kitchen was uneventful and their arrival towards the desolate mess hall even more so until they found the leftover dishes. They were cold and unappetizing, and he knew inevitable indigestion the minute that would come back to bite him later so he started to experiment with a few additives he carried around. After heating it up for a few minutes on the stove, he led his yummy result outside to the main training ground. He was expecting to see someone in the hours of dawn.

Out in the fields, he sat with his legs crossed as he savored the bite of his food. Occasionally he would also give some to Mefi who herself had been starving with him. Their reason for this little picnic lied on the crimson haired man throwing fireballs at practice dummies all around the field. Thankfully, the anti-magic toxins meant that the dummies never fully burned, but the young man’s ability had already surpassed that of a normal mage and his victims now showed an unusual amount of black charred patches of fabric. This man came everyday at the exact same time and the other man with glasses just had to try his luck.

“So tell me Alabaster, why do you always come and practice so early?” he asks

“Then tell me why do you practice the demon arts at dawn, you heretic.” Alabaster responds sharply at the other

‘’Ouch, always straight to the punch, you sure never change.’’ he sighs

‘’Faust, knowing this isn’t our first interaction, you should have known better than to have asked.” Alabaster chides

Unfortunately for both, their relationship was less than cordial. Alabaster held a high distaste for Faust and his practices while Faust himself did nothing to clarify his intentions when coming to speak with him.

‘’True… but for some reason I want to keep asking anyways.’’ Faust replies hopefully


‘’Oh, so you brought your hell spawn along with you.’’ He asks coldly

‘’Her name is Mefi, Alabaster and she’s not a hell spawn. She’s my adorable little creation made out of carbon just like you and me. We’ve been over this already.’’ Faust pats her head a little

‘’No matter, your methods are still… Guhh, I need to focus on my targets so leave.’’

The two young men cease their conversation as they go on about their business, eating and practicing. If for nothing else, Faust always admired Alabaster’s determination for having watched him a number of times; he was always improving on everything he lacked on. After thinking through a simulation in his head, he incanted a dark vortex to collide with Alabaster’s fireball causing a small explosion.

‘’What are you doing!?’’ Alabster responded indignant

‘Dunno, just felt kinda bored seeing you waste that huge potential of yours on those cheap dummies. What do you have to gain from all this training?’’ Faust inquired

‘’I don’t need to explain myself to you, you annoying pest.’’ Alabaster rebuffed

‘’Loosen up, Alabaster. I know full well, it’s because you have the hots for Princess Avelynde.’’ Faust replied snidely

‘’What are you saying!? That simply isn’t true!’’ Alabaster hid a blush

‘’Oh really… then why are you getting flustered little man. Princess Avelynde of Riselia is by far a gorgeous woman with her long blue hair, her eyes that sparkle like stars and those curves… hahahah man she’s perfect! If it weren’t for my dedication to research, I’m sure even I would be caught under her spell!’’ Faust taunted

‘’Stop speaking you swine!’’ Alabaster scram

Alabaster was in a state of shock, in all the days he had come, no one had ever dared to speak out about his infatuation towards the princess. Every single one of his words struck Alabaster like giant needles to the heart and he grew desperate. His retaliation to this spew concentrated itself into numerous fireballs heading directly at him fast!

‘’By the gods… Mefi, I summon your strength!!!’’ Faust shouted

Mefi leaped in the air and began to glow turning into a dark tome, and in quick succession he created numerous dark vortexes around him to shield the attack. The resulting collisions of fire and dark matter began a landmine of explosions alerting the nearby guards of the castle, but neither of the two paid any attention to their growing audience. The first attack had been made and it was only natural to return the favor.

‘’If it’s a fight you asked for then I’ll be glad to give you one! Burn you herectic!’’ Alabaster roared

‘’Hahahahah, now that’s more like it!’’ The aura of battle between both men had intensified, this wasn’t going to be a simple training match and in response to his spirit, Faust began to prepare his own attack. He had a short window of opportunity to counterattack and with Mefi at his side he made his decision in full. A small dark sigil encompassed his position and sprang forth four vortexes into existence surrounding his newfound prey. Alabaster did not relent when captured from his body he began to emanate the flames from his soul destroying his prison and letting him escape to deal three more hurdles of fire towards Faust.

The battle began to become arduous for both men now that after the initial attack, all they could do was overwhelm the other with a flurry of attacks, but none could keep the advantage forever. Faust’s attacks were slow and precise while Alabaster’s were just the opposite hitting fast, but in all directions. Ten minutes had passed and all the bets had been placed by the guards when both realized they had reached a deadlock. They had been worn out to exhaustion by this point, but neither conceded the match and so again they mustered their remaining energy to commence their final attack.

“Heh… Well, it’s been one heck of a battle huh?” Faust replied exhausted

“I’ll admit… you’ve proved to be slight challenge, but you are still no match for me…” Alabaster said while panting

‘’Acting cocky huh… so the cold and composed man of before has shown his true colors. Interesting… very interesting… princess please watch over this little confused soul.’’ Faust joked

‘’Your comments are unnecessary. Why don’t I eliminate you right now!’’

The end had come and both men were prepared to finish it. Alabaster began by producing a large red sigil underneath his feet and charging up his attack with all the strength he could call upon. On the other hand, Faust called on Mefi’s name and his tome disappeared from thin air before he himself commanded a large black sigil to appear underneath his feet and the race began for the last strike.

Alabaster held the lead but his attack needed more time to form in contrast to Faust who seemed to be ready to start his attack any minute. The guards watching all began to quiet down beginning to fear what would become of the action, but in a flash their anticipation ended. Alabaster had finished and wasting no time, all began to conclude. From his hand a gigantic fireball appeared going into high speeds towards Faust, and with an unabated look, he himself turned the tables by swallowing Alabaster in a sea of dark matter that began to form vortexes inside. Both men could have lost the strength to move and their day of judgment had arrived.

At the same time, they fell down for the count. Alabaster having failed to extricate himself from the sea of vortexes was eventually caught victim of the ensuing explosion that each one made while Faust took the brunt of the attack head on causing roughly the equivalent of his own attack. Alabaster and Faust were thrown to the farthest end of their sides and remained as such unconscious. The finale had concluded, both participants had been knocked out from each other’s attack.

“So… who won?” a random guard spoke

“Who else, no one can beat Alabaster!” another guard roared

‘’Hell yeah, now pay up losers!’’ another random guard demanded

‘’But wai-‘’ a hesitant guard was cut off

‘’Hurry up and pay! We need to get him to the medical ward!’’

As the guards bickered, the few who wagered on Faust were forced to give up their money without complaint. Satisfied with the few extra geld in their pockets, all the guards took haste to help Alabaster. His clothes were tattered and his entire body was filled with cuts and bruises, the display was scary enough for some of the guards to cringe and with all due speed they carried the poor sap out of the field. The only person left afterwards was Faust who still lied crumbled on the floor, none of the soldiers having deigned it necessary to seek him medical attention.

“General Kasda, what is Alabaster the name of the man who fought the Spectral? The one I wish to have an audience with.”

“Correct, my Queen Alinda. He serves under the Phoenix Division under the command of Eralo.”

“I see. Eralo has better men than he deserves. That drunk crosses a fine line in discipline but enough about him.”

“Is there something the matter my queen?” asked General Kasda before following her gaze outwards back to the training field and understanding why. “Pay no heed to his antics, he means no harm.”

“I know that all to well dear General. He saved my daughter and asks only for knowledge…” Her face becomes puzzled as she looks at the spot where Faust had been left now devoid of his presence as if he had disappeared. ” I merely wonder… who is he really? Spectral really is the way to define him.”

The moment passed she cast her gaze back towards the castle and ordered Kasda to follow her inside. The rest of the day would seem to be a peaceful one and in this tranquility our young shaman was tending his wounds with various herbs behind the castle grounds alongside an already chipper Mefi

The castle as it stood was rather large and the only thing behind it was a small pasture that lead to the river that supplied water to more than half the country, the Altamaria. Grand and pristine it was truly a sight to behold.

“If I apply them here… Yep, it stings! Then just drink this and wait for a few minutes, I should be fine.” The young Faust said aloud as if he was reading instructions from his mental manual. “Alabaster was a good opponent to test these things out on.” 

“Mefi!” She squeaked

“Hahah, you worried about me Mefi? Sorry, but your master is a reckless type. He said gazing out towards the lake; extending a hand to pat and ruffle Mefi. “Your existence alone is proof of that but you’re pretty reliable for a little goof.”

Far more ecstatic than expected, Mefi happily jumped into Faust’s hair and snuggled with it. Happy himself Faust awaited for the effects of his herbs to take effect and began to contemplate the scenery. A feeling of ease spreading and calming his body.

“The Garuda Division doesn’t converge today.” He thought to himself before lazily closing his eyes “*Yawn…* A nap should… do me good.”

And so he laid himself to rest and received the last ingredient to a rapid recovery. Mefi herself could not hold her own When he woke once more, the sun had set in the middle and with a quick stretch he made himself back to the grounds just to be summoned to the Queen’s throne room for an audience.

Not seeing a reason to refuse, he entered only to find himself face to face with General Kasda, Queen Alinda and surprisingly a banged up Alabaster. A sense of awkwardness wrapped itself on Faust since the herbs he used made his body face a full recovery in contrast to his companion but nonetheless he stayed his tongue as the Alinda had something to say.

“Be at ease, you have been summoned here to do a few simple tasks.” Alinda spoke briefly

“As you know, Faust. Despite your status as a Spectral, you work under the Wind Magic division the Garudas. Your division captain Yunel is on an investigation in the border

“True, these are facts already known to me.” He said rather seriously “I apologize for the demand, but what do you need of us?” A scowl from Alabaster however was not too far off as they’re view returned back to the Queen

The expression on her face was unfazed at the comment and simply continued with a small imperceptible smirk. “Fair enough. Faust I want you to verify the working conditions of the Feilong Dragon Camps and speak with an informant in the port town of Ion. I’ll hand you a letter specifying more details when you depart for official purposes” she said in earnest

“Understood. When do I depart if I may ask?”

“In three hours.” She paused for moment before taking her time to look at Alabaster trying to scrutinize everything of his appearance. In fear the young man tried his best to utter a sentence

“Excuse me my Queen. What was my reason to appear here?”

In response to his question, the queen simply waited before taking any effort to continue. She looked to general Kasda and later again to Faust only for them to nod their head tacitly having agreed on a matter before she came to answer the mage’s question.

“After careful consultation and deliberation, I’ve realized my daughter is in a rather vulnerable age. She’s a prodigy and incredibly gifted in the arts but she still lacks combat experience. From this day forth you shall be granted an opportunity to be her bodyguard to protect her.”

Faust couldn’t help but put a grin on as the flustered Alabaster received the news as if in shock over what he had just heard. It didn’t take him long to recover but it was evident he wasn’t still completely there.

“So far, the only men she trusts in her life have been Kasda, Faust and her father and these three will be the ones to approve your position.”

At this moment, Alabaster realized that during the entire conversation, he had been surrounded from all sides by his judges. Each one deigning a strong poker face to keep their emotions in check. It was if they had seized their prey and did not wish for it to escape and in this he felt trapped and unsure but to continue general Kasda broke the silence at first.

“Your studies and your records indicate strong convictions and you have more potential than you believe possible. I approve of your new position in earnest.”

“Skeptical as I may be, she can’t be secluded forever. I offered the position so you would take it. I’m sure my husband would approve of your new placement.”

Then came Faust and Alasbaster could not feel any more worry than he had already. A man he ridiculed and fought merely a few hours ago stood in his way to grant him passage. It was almost evident what he’d say and for a moment he knew he had to give up until…”

“I’m sure she’ll appreciate the company. Rubia would probably love some more breaks now and again. You have my approval.”

In consensus the answer had arrived and with a sense of estrangement, Alabaster couldn’t help but ask himself what merited the amount of kindness Faust had given him. All this left him speechless that he could not question him before queen Alinda proclaimed her decree to the room.

“Now, do you accept this new position that we have bestowed upon you. Your regular duties as a soldier of Rizelia will continue but your part will now increase more than ever before.”

He couldn’t dally any longer and forgetting his worries, he quickly answered. “Yes, my queen. I accept this honor with my entire heart. I’d say more but words are not enough to show my gratitude in this decision.”

“Then it’s decided. You shall begin work as soon as Avelynde returns from her studies. You are both dismissed until further notice.”

The doors opened behind them and wasting no time Faust took his stride and left the premises. His face was as jovial as ever and the seriousness he displayed beforehand completely gone. It seemed as he was content and the only thing that stopped his reverie was the man who he had gifted the job of his dreams.

“Stop!” Alabaster shouted from the halls, his voiced ragged and nervous. “Why did you do that?”

“Was I not suppose to?” Faust asked with a snarky tone.

“No, I mean… What’s your plan putting me in such a position?”

“Nothing really, you just seemed to be the guy for the job. Rubia can’t do it all by herself you know? Avelynde is pretty tenacious believe it or not, my good pal.” he responded back with apparent sincerity.

“T-that was going to be my second question? Why are you a man she trusts?” His interested piqued there more than anywhere else.

Faust had to give out a small apologetic smile against this question. He had his reasons for refusing but Mefi popping out of his hair and smiling at Alabaster seemed to release some of his tensions. He figured it’d be best to speak now before his mind thought of an infinite number of ulterior motives.

“That’s a bit of a secret. If you want, you can ask Avelynde about it but I’m sworn not to tell. Sorry to disappoint pal.”

“…No, it’s quite alright. I should be happy to have been granted such mercy over the things I’ve said about you rather than question you even now. I apologize.”

Faust this time changed his apologetic smile to an understanding one and as Alabaster moved his face downward, he patted his shoulder and Mefi jumped out and snuggled his hair almost as if giving a hug before jumping back.

“Don’t sweat it, I had my reasons and you’ll see them soon enough. If you’ll excuse me however, I got some bags to pack. See ya.”

Not stoping for anything this time, Faust left with a small smile with Mefi in tow leaving a confused but grateful man behind. Out of sight, he arrived at his laboratory so to speak and began to pack.

By the end of his three hour voyage one would scarcely find anything in the room that had been covered from top to bottom in schematics, diagrams, notes and desks yet he only left with a small satchel storing food and water. An empty room with hidden objects as if it had never been there in the first place. 

Waiting by the castle gates, he received his instructions and official proclamation through the letter. The messenger left and with it Faust himself as he set to town and then toward the outskirts roads disappearing as suddenly as he had first arrived. 

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