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TITLE: The Champion of Light bk 1 chpt 1a
By George McVey

This is the prolog and half the first chapter of a sci/fi/fantasy novel that I am working on would be interested in your critique and suggestions.
To the Royal Champion,
I want to thank your majesties for the privilege of chronicling the History of the Champion of Light and his Helpmate. I have strived to interview as many of the people involved in the events as I could given your desire to have this chronicle be one of fact and not of myth or legend. I of course had to take some leeway with the side of the Keepers of the Light as I felt it not wise to approach those few left in the northern kingdom. I thought after their significant losses to your majesties they would not be to willing to share their story with us. I have learned much about you and the LIGHT GIVER in the documentation of this history and pray along with you that this chronicle will bring many others into the freedom of the LIGHT GIVER. Any suggestions you have after reading this telling of your story please let me know so that the proper changes can be made. I am a convinced as I can be that I did not take creative license with this work and as much as people may think it is a fictionalized account or legend every word is true based upon eyewitness testimony and the memories of those who were there.
Your Servant and the LIGHT GIVER’S
Jasper Royal Bard and Chronicler

When darkness reigns in the kingdom of Light
And all seems lost in blackest night
From the Keepers camp a true champion shall arise
And with him once more the True LIGHT shall thrive.
And these shall be the signs he is right
He shall be cloaked in the Armor of the Light
There from his hand LIGHTS power shall pour
And drive the Keepers from the kingdoms door. –
Prophecy of the Champion found in the records of the Historians and on the wall of the LOGOS of LIGHT room in the Morningstar Castle.

Chapter One: The Day of Change Begins.

Had he known that today would be the day that changed everything he believed to be true, Tal cleric of the Keepers of the Light, would probably have stayed in bed. By not knowing he instead was rushing to the copy room to continue his required time of copying the Logos of Light for the new chapel being erected in the Capitol city of Iluminous in the Kingdom of Light. The chapel was the most glorious the Keepers had ever built and would spread the Law of the Light to the far southern reaches of the Kingdom. It was therefore a great privilege to be given the task of insuring they had an authorized copy of the LOGOS by the time of completion, Or so Master Cleric Frizzell was constantly reminding him.

Tal entered the Copy Room he was assigned to all copy rooms looked the same along the back wall the furthest from the light was the preservation chests of the LOGOS in the ones on the right were the Authorized LOGOS scrolls one scroll for every scribe assigned to the room. The preservation chests were made of cedar wood and the outsides had been coated with a finish that was resistant to light and water to help preserve the LOGOS so that each scroll would last up to two times longer than it normally would have. This was done to cut down on the number of recopies that had to be made.

On the left side of the back wall was one large steel chest with a huge lock on the front in it were the Original copies of the tainted LOGOS removed twenty years earlier by the current Chief Illuminator after the LIGHT GIVER revealed to him that the LOGOS they had been following for generations had been corrupted a thousand years earlier.

Just in front of that wall where the windows that ran down the outside wall of the room allowed the maximum natural light for the scribes to copy by was the Master Scribe Desk where the Master class scribe and overseer of the room sat hard at work checking a recently completed copy of the LOGOS for error or taint before releasing it to the chapel it had been created for. Then three desks across four desks deep from there to the entrance room were the Subscription class scribes desks all of which were already filled except of the one in the far left corner the one belonging to Tal. The copy rooms occupied the top most floor of the Temple of the Keepers of Light and they had a large crystal sun dome over each Copy desk to allow all the light a scribe would need to see to make his careful copy of the LOGOS for distribution to either an existing chapel whose LOGOS was becoming worn and hard to read or in Tal’s case a brand new copy for a brand new temple.

Tal walked quickly and quietly to his desk and began to get set up for today’s copying. First he checked to make sure that there were twelve fresh Eagle quills for him to copy with, only the eagle was considered holy to the LIGHT GIVER so that its tail feathers could be harvested for the copying of the LOGOS.

Next he check his ink well and realized that he had been in such a hurry to leave the night before that he had neglected to fill it so took his well and went back to the entrance room where on the left sat a cask of the blackest ink the Kingdom of Light could manufacture. He carefully filled the well half way know that the air of the open ink well would cause it to become to dry by lunch to be usable and not wanting to have to spend half his lunch time washing the well he learned as a novice to only get what he would need till lunch then he could quickly wipe out the well and refill it after eating.

That accomplished and the well neatly back in its nest on the copy desk. Tal opened the scroll well on the left side of the desk and threaded the LOGOS scroll he was laboring so diligently over through the copy placard a wooden square much like a picture frame that would hold a whole days worth of scroll to be copied and dried. The placard opened on a hinge to the bottom of the desk and latched into place in each corner. Leaving the placard raised Tal opened the preservation box on the right and attached his copy of the logos into the scroll roller and began to slowly crank the handle until he had no print between the two vertical slats of the placard he lowered the placard with his left hand while keeping the scroll rolled snug with is right and snapped the latches at each corner into place keeping the empty section of the scroll in place.

Once this was done he closed the side of the preservation box being careful to make sure the scroll exiting it was lined up with the small slit that allowed the scroll to run to the placard and then he latched it in place and released the winding handle tension so as not to put stress on the skin of the scroll.
Then and only then did Tal approach Master Frizzell’s desk and ask for the key to his Authorized LOGOS preservation box.

Master Frizzell looked at Tal then looked at the Sun dial on his desk. “Tal, I for the life of me cannot understand you. You are the most gifted young scribe we have here at the Temple, and I and the Chief Scribe have both personally gone out on a limb recommending you for this most prestigious honor. We even promoted you from novice to transcription class six years sooner than any scribe has ever been promoted, making you the youngest transcription scribe ever and yet you arrive right on time or late every day. You know that the only thing now keeping the chapel of Iluminous from being dedicated and operational is the arrival of their copy of the Authorized LOGOS you should be the first one here and the last one to leave. I tell you this every day and yet here you are again late.”

“I know Master Frizzell, I do apologize for being late again, I even told my room mate to awaken me when he got up for his guard shift at Third watch this morning planning to be early but I must have rolled back to sleep. Let me get my key and I will get right to work.” Tal breathed a silent prayer to the LIGHT GIVER don’t let them have checked the scroll yet, as Master Frizzell with a frown handed him his key.

“Here Tal get your scroll and get to work. However today you will work through lunch and I will come back and get you for mid day devotions. Also, Tal, I myself will come by your room in the morning and awaken you and escort you to break fast and straight to here.” With those words the Master went back to checking the scroll on his own desk against his authorized LOGOS scroll.

Tal approached his preservation chest and opened it, there within lay a copy of the LOGOS. Not raising it enough to be seen by anyone he turned it until he found the strange mark he was looking for, a circle with a cross and an x through it. When he saw that mark he felt relief and fear at the same time, relief because that meant no one had figured out that somehow he had been given an original copy of the LOGOS not an authorized copy and fearful because it would mean death to be caught with one.

He should have turned it in almost a year earlier when he first started working on his current copy, but his curiosity had gotten the better of him. He had wanted to know how the original was tainted and because of the trust that Master Frizzell had in him no one had checked his scroll to see what he was copying. He figured at the time that it would end up in some small little chapel where it wasn’t even read but used as a symbol, and he would have been right if not for the plague of a month ago. Now instead he was the transcription scribe to the most highly coveted new temple construction project ever undertaken. Rumor had it that what was being built was not a chapel but would in just a few years time become the new Temple of the Keepers as they moved to the capitol city so that the Chief Illuminator would be closer to his brother King Solaris to help advise him against any further spread of the Taint of Darkness that they had discovered twenty years ago.

Tal quickly lifted the LOGOS carried it to his reader box placed the whole scroll end threaded the end through the slit latched the box opened the reader placard, which opened just like the writing placard only downward instead of up lined up the scroll and treaded the end into the readers scroll roller in its protection box and carefully turned the scrolling arm until the text he was working on was displayed in the reader placard then keeping the arm snug he snapped the placard in place then the protection box and then releasing the arm, sat down to copy.

Tal was finding it nearly impossible to complete the task of copying scroll because he kept being drawn to read the restricted parts. Even though he knew that the Chief Illuminator had discovered them to be heresy and not found in the oldest copy he had discovered in the catacombs of the Keep, they spoke to his soul like nothing in the authorized text. What he was supposed to be copying made him feel imprisoned by the Logos and impotent to be found worthy of the Light Giver’s love, but the words of the unauthorized text made his soul feel light, free, and empowered to do great things. So his work slowed as he found himself reading more than writing.

He would have gotten away with this indiscretion too if not for the midday devotional requirement. When he failed to hear the bell calling for assembly the Master cleric took notice of him and came by to rouse him to devotions. That was when it was discovered that Tal had not even completed a half a page of copying for a whole mornings work. Tal looked at his Master who was reminding him yet again of the shortness of the time left till his chapel would be ready for dedication and that the completed copy of the LOGOS must be finished and delivered before that time for proper sanctification of the chapel. Tal responded with “I understand Master Frizzell I just seem to be overwhelmed by the manifestation of the Logos in my possession this morning.”

Master Frizzell smiled and patted his pet student on the arm and answered. “Oh Tal that happened to all of us at first but you must overcome it. Take the afternoon and the text you were transcribing and spend time with it in the meditation closet. But you must return ready to make up for lost time tomorrow.” “And what ever you do, do not be late for dinner tonight as you are to service the Chief Illuminator tonight. It would not look good on our department for the youngest transcription scribe ever to be late to his mandatory service.”

“Oh thank you Master I will be there on time and will certainly strive to catch up tomorrow on my copying for the chapel.” Tal replied. And with that he gathered up the scroll that had so enthralled him and was gone before Master Frizzell could notice that it was not the authorized copy but the original copy from the Logos room at Castle Morningstar.
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