Bright light filtered through into Pocket's eyes as he lay on his back like a starfish in his bed. He had taken to leaving his curtains open to ensure he would wake up at sunrise. Damarus had asked him to run 3 laps of the city walls every morning and evening, in between he was to help the local traders carry their daily stock from the Hawkegates to the market. It was working, not only was he physically fitter - he could now backflip higher and further than ever before - it was also helping to repair his relationships with the citizens of the city. Their anger had been replaced by sympathy and a sense of pride that Pocket had decided to follow in his father's footsteps and chosen to become a member of the Knights Templar.
This morning Pocket was feeling the strain however, yesterday he had worked in Blackwing quarry and the summer sun had taken its toll on him. He dragged himself out of bed and outside to begin his daily routine. His run would take him past the graveyard where he would stop for a quick rest. He broke into a sprint as he approached the gates and slid to take the corner at speed and CRASH! As he gathered himself he looked up to find Damarus standing over him. "Oh hello Pocket, do you mind? I was standing here". Pocket grinned as she helped him up. In the month they had known each other Pocket had got to know her well but he had never seen Damarus outside the Priory. The morning sunlight lit up her purple and red armour fantastically, Pocket made a mental note to one day ask about its origins. "Today is your day off, I'm here to talk".
They found a spot in the shade and sat down. "Pocket when your father left home 3 years ago to come here it was at my instruction, the appearance of the Crystal Dragon meant we needed to protect the city and its citizens. Soon after he was posted there was a premonition, the prophecy said that the smallest of Tyria’s heroes would slay the Dragon but at a cost, the life of the hero. We shared this with Pantzz who believed that it was him the prophecy referred to, we agreed. But after that day in the Brand and your father’s passing we were left confused as the dragon lives on. We tried to re-interpret the prophecy and when you appeared in the Priory it all made sense, the prophecy spoke of two heroes, one that would be slain by the dragon, and the other who would appear to defeat it, that other hero is you". Pocket clenched his fist and felt his new strength flow up his arm. He compared it to the strength with which he would hold the Infinity Ball. He remembered his vision of an Asuran warrior slaying the Dragon but he could not imagine one day being able to face it, let alone defeat it. Could it be that the Ball actually worked?
"Who is the dragon and how did it come to be?" Asked Pocket. "It is known as The Shatterer, forged from crystal and fire, it is the champion of Kralkatorrik and it has never been defeated. For years we have fought it back to the brink of Blazeridge Steppes but it returns re-forged and stronger every time”. Damarus' explanation just made Pocket feel even more helpless. "Don't be disheartened Pocket, you have not yet begin your real training and you do not yet possess the tools to face The Shatterer". "What tools?" enquired Pocket. "Asuran Electromagnetic armour and the Super Greatsword". Pocket eyes lit up, "I have seen those in a vision! The legendary armour and weapon possessed by only the mightiest of Asurans, but how...?". "One step at a time Pocket, I too know the trials one must face before being able to wield such power, as I said before, your training has not yet begun". Pocket flipped into the air twisted and landed on his feet facing Damarus, "Then train me". Damarus peered into Pockets purple eyes and saw an newfound intensity, "Come with me".
They walked westwards from the graveyard and found themselves at the bottom of a set of stairs, the same stairs Pocket had taken to the organ. They walked up and onto the balcony, today the door was fully open and inside Pocket saw the figure of a man stood in front of the organ. It was a ranger, he turned to face them and his eyes focused on Pocket. "Hmm... low centre of gravity and a strong core". All of a sudden he pulled an arrow from his quiver, armed his bow and aimed it at Damarus, Pocket responded with a dodge to the right and shielded him, it happened very fast , almost subconsciously and his own instinct surprised him. "Excellent reflexes and speed... and brave". "Who are you?!" demanded Pocket bearing his teeth. The ranger ignored him and exchanged a smile with Damarus. "A warrior I think?" proposed the ranger, "I agree" responded Damarus. Pocket relaxed a little but persisted with his earlier question, "Who is this Damarus?". Damarus looked at the ranger and nodded, "I am your trainer Pocket, my name is Loren Michael".
Loren released his arrow and Pocket felt a rush of air as it narrowly missed him and landed in the chair placed in the corner of the room, "Firsts things first, can I please have my book back?" "Oh uh... Of course... I was just borrowing it, I'll go get it now". An embarrassed Pocket turned to leave and as he was halfway down the stairs Loren called out to him, "and pack your things, we're going to Lion's Arch!"
It took a lot of convincing before Zipp allowed Pocket to move to Lions Arch. A visit from Loren and Damarus had helped. They stressed the need for him to be fully focused on his training. His lodging was paid for by the guild but Pocket had also taken a job as a helper in the weaponsmith, it gave him some extra money so he could waypoint to Ebonhawke to see his mother every couple of weeks - not even Asuras could waypoint for free. The first couple of weeks training consisted of him continuing his daily training regime as he settled into his new surroundings.
One morning Pocket opened his front door to find Loren waiting for him, in her hands she had a new set of armour and Lionguard axe and shield. Pocket’s eyes lit up “Are those for me?!”. Loren nodded as Pocket ran to take up his arms, they were perfectly sized for him and felt light. These weapons were usually reserved for the Lionguard soldiers themselves but Loren had managed to procure one through the Black Lion Trading Post through an acquaintance named Haxx. “Combat training starts today, let’s go!” He went back inside to get changed and they then walked to the mini arena in Fort Marriner. “I want you to see something Pocket, over there, look...” Pocket climbed up onto one of the arena walls and watched as six gladiators fought. One was an Asuran Lionguard Soldier wielding a shield just like his. “From now on I want you to watch her closely and study her movements, one day you’ll be in that arena”. Pocket wathed the Asuran going toe-to toe with a Norn and remembered the fight between his father and the Beast in the Brand, he gulped, his weapons felt very heavy now.
They walked over to the other side of the harbour to a set of practise dummies that were dressed up a pirates, Loren pointed at one, “OK, so we are going to start off with the basics, I want you to hit this dummy as hard as you can with your axe”. Pocket felt nervous, “But how should I hit it? What about like this...” he swung the axe in mid-air meekly”. “We’re not here to chop wood Pocket! Now concentrate”. Pocket gripped the axe tightly in his hand, took a couple of steps back and launched himself towards the dummy, he pulled the axe back behind his head and then thrust it forwards with full force. He had fallen face first to the ground still two paces away from the dummy, other gladiators in the arena turned to point and laugh, Loren gave them a stern look and helped Pocket up. “I’m going to need a drink if you carry on like this, we’re not here to cull quaggans! Watch me, I’ll show you how it’s done”. Loren took his axe and spun it in the air catching it on the way back down. “Stand back”, Loren thrust the axe into the heart of the dummy and it exploded in bright flash creating a plue of dust and straw. As the cloud settled Pocket’s jaw hit the ground, one strike from Loren has smashed away both of the dummy’s arms, pirate hat and scarf. He couldn’t even locate them on the ground, they had just disintegrated. The other gladitors stared in amazement at Loren who looked at Pocket, “Your turn”.
Next week Pocket completes his training in Chapter Four - Leveling up with Loren!
A Knight's Tale - Chapter Three - Training
by Pocket on May 06, 2013 at 12:46 PM}