“Come near children! It is time for bed!”
The old woman struggled to contain the children scattered amongst the room, their giggles and excited laughter filling the space as they raced about playing, still as full of energy as they were this morning. The elder settled into a rocking chair situated in between two beds and with an accustomed smile called once more to the children.
“Gather children, gather round and I will tell you about the tales of old.”
All play came to a stop as the words reached their ears and without any more fuss the children settled into their beds, the two girls and two boys divided in the beds and with rapt eyes waited for the woman to begin her narration. Story time was their favorite, as no one could tell a story like their granny could. As she tucked them in, pulling up the blankets and fluffing their pillows, her voice started once again.
“Long ago, much longer than anyone can remember, there was a time of myth and a time of magic!”
The children gasped with glee as she started, recognizing the story immediately as one of their favorites- the origin story of their country Luminus. Amused by their reactions the woman smiled, and got settled into the chair to continue the tale.
“It was a time of kingdoms, of knights and maidens, and of kings and queens-”
“But Granny there are all of those things today!” One of the children cried out indignantly.
“Yes, but back then there were dragons.” The woman's hand waved through the air, mimicking the graceful motion of the imaginary dragon flying through the air.
“These dragons were powerful and noble creatures, capable of making entire kingdoms and destroying as much depending on their moods. But that was before the time of the Darkening.”
The children shuddered, the fear of the Darkening already well known to them. The Darkening referred to the time when sickness and death plagued the land, killing many creatures and even the land itself. Some parts of the kingdom were still nothing but deadened and black land, with wispy soot particles that seemed to never go away no matter how much time passed. Everyone was told of the Darkening as a child, and for those who used to worship it- the Shades.