Castus Arken

Castus rested his chin in his palm and stared listlessly out of the tower window. It had been a tenday of this boredom and inactivity, the worst of which was living in his Orpheus’ tower whilst awaiting his return from the Archipelago.  Their Father always gave the two tasks such as this, but never one in which his older brother had this much control over the action.

The slender elf wore long, sweeping robes of the finest spider-silk that glimmered with a faint magical effervescence.  His silver hair fell sleek and uniform across his face as he leaned against the tower wall.  The wizard lay on the divan in the most lazily construed manner.

Eyes of piercing green adorned his angular face that became specks of viridian focus whenever the 117 year old mage was amid concentration of his considerable intellect.  He had always been the most knowledgeable master of the arcane in his family, but had grown up in a life of luxury, study, and seclusion; factors which manifested in his open desire to see himself away the academy.

Castus’ thoughts had lazily drifted to his ambition for control  . . . and the throne, when he heard the hurried sounds of servants’ footsteps in the floors below.

“Our hero returns. . .” he muttered as he moved to leave his seat.  His keen ears picked up a slight *whooshing* sound outside his chamber door mid-motion, stopping the elf for a moment.

The next thing Castus knew his older brother’s dark form walked through the portal, shrouded in a whirling aura of air and shadow. The slightly taller elf was twirling his oaken staff and smirking even wider than usual,”Guess what I found. . . .”

“Nothing worth my notice I am sure,” Castus slowly droned, though his mind raced to deduce what his brother could be referring to, and more importantly: his intentions.

Castus had spent his life studying the mysteries of Divination magic, and had attained an almost pre-cognitive perception of events.  He had to focus though. This time he had been caught relatively off-guard. . .

“Ha! I promise that you will crave what I’ve gained,” came the reply quickly as the elf swiftly removed his ebony locks from his forehead, eyes wide with intensity.  Castus was reluctantly raising his gaze to meet his brother’s when he saw it, a brilliant, piercing beam of crimson energy spilling from Orpheus’ mid-eye.

“The game is over younger brother…”

Castus felt his consciousness slowly drift back to his surface mind.

He growled in frustration and rubbed his eyes shut with a jerky motion.  He could not recall anything more useful of his memories of that day, even in his most focused reveries.  Orpheus had seemingly jumped immensely in arcane power level upon returning that day.  He had gotten the jump on him, stripped him of his persona, and left him to die miles from their island home.  Seemingly adding insult to the injury of trumping his rival and sibling once and for all, he had taken his memory of their families secret language of power words; his final revenge for all of Castus’ past humiliations and triumphs over him.

“Petty fool.” he spat.

“What spell? What artifact does he employ?” His thoughts raced to search for a conclusion to be drawn.

He had pulled an amazing gambit somehow, a seemingly impossible reversal of fortune in their competition for the favor of their father. . .

In the end, he would show his impetuous brother that strategy transcended tactics.