“The Legend Of Oz The Caster
CHAPTER III – The White Mage Tower
Traveling to ‘The Key’, home to the Four Mage Towers of Thay, would be a three day journey.
Fortunately it would be Grasslands, so the traveling wouldn’t be too tough, but that doesn’t mean I won’t encounter creatures and/or travelers.
But it was just me and my snow tiger cub, Sherwood, and though I apparently have innate Magical abilities, I have not mastered, nor truly harnessed them…
…which is the reason I’m traveling to The Key, in hopes to become an Apprentice to one of the Four Mages, each in their own tower surrounding the giant lake.
Truth be known, I should probably hire a Mercenary to protect me for now, but I’d be very fortunate indeed to run into one along the way.
As I am not near a town, where a Tavern might deliver one.
On my first day of traveling, I came across two men that looked slightly shady…
Fortunately I was able to sneak by them while they got water from a nearby stream.
As it neared night, I also came across a Snow Leopard who was eating a recent kill, and once more was able to avoid an encounter.
That first night at camp, however, I would not be so lucky.
As I sat by the fire, starting to doze off, a rock flew into the camp, striking me on the side of the head.
I was bleeding, but otherwise ok.
Sherwood growled his little cub growl, but I suspect it did little good, as a screaming Goblin came tearing into the light!
I quickly grabbed my staff, and indicated that he should leave via body language.
He did seem to hesitate for some reason, perhaps it was my boyish charm, as I was only 19.
I put down my staff, and tossed him a piece of cooked meat on a stick.
He ate it, gave me a fierce glare, then traveled on.
I was lucky, (Oz looks at his hands), or perhaps he was.
The next day I ran into a Patrol of three swordsmen, who served ‘The Key’…
They told me I was heading the right direction, but had no information about where I might find a Mercenary, other than the Forest town of Dilee, some seven days away, or the Southern Port town of Jor, also about seven days away, both in the wrong directions.
Later I saw an enormous Mammoth, something I had never seen before, and I admit, the taste of the life of an Adventurer suddenly found its’ way in to my brain.
An Adventurer… Hmm
That night while I was dosing off once again while sitting at the fire, I heard a noise outside my camp.
I stood, staff in hand, “Who’s there?”
…but there was no reply.
I sat back down, when suddenly that same Snow Leopard wandered slowly into my camp.
Sherwood ran towards him right away, “Sherwood! No!”
Sherwood rolled on his back beneath the Snow Leopard, and started batting at his forelegs, as a kitten might do.
But the Snow Leopard didn’t seem to pay it any mind.
He instead just stood there staring at me…
An insane impulse hit me, and suddenly I sat the staff down, and sat back down at the fire…
…and then the most amazing thing occurred.
The Snow Leopard stepped towards the campfire, and as he did, he took the form of a man…
A white haired, yellow eyed, man.
“May I,” he spoke, gesturing towards the fire.
“Of course,” I replied, and he sat across from me.
“You are an interesting one…” he spoke.
“Thank you,” I replied, as I continued to cook some vegetables and meat on a stick.
“Are you hungry?” I asked, but he nodded no.
“A young man, traveling with a cub Snow Tiger, who does not flinch at a Snow Leopard turning into a man…” spoke the now man.
“I have read about your kind… Fascinating,” Oz replied.
The man smiled, “Then you’re a scholar?”
Oz laughed as well, “Not quite… I mean… Not yet.”
This got the man’s attention, “Ah, then you’re a Mage, heading to the Four Towers?”
Oz looked surprised at the man’s perceptiveness, “Yes… Well… I mean… I’m a Caster, yes.”
This puzzled the man, “A Caster?”
“Yes, you see, I’m not a Wizard… Yet… And I’m not a Sorcerer… Yet, but I do seem to have an innate ability to cast… Er… Magic,” Oz explained.
“Interesting… And you’re in need of a Mercenary?”
Once again, Oz was surprised, “How? Never mind, yes, I am in fact in need of some protection, as I am not an astute Caster, and thus, I’m kind of lucky to be alive out here traveling alone…”
“I’m your man… How much are you paying?” responded the man.
Oz seemed pleasantly surprised, “Well… In truth… I hadn’t thought on it… How about 25 Gold?”
The man seemed surprised by this amount, “Well then, that would buy you two weeks of service,” he reached arcross to Oz to shake on it…
…and so they did.
PICTURE CREDIT – Circle Tower