If you’ve been wondering how Project Prometheus came to be… The story starts in 9000 BCE, when five Elders of a Temple charged with maintaining the balance between our world and the Otherworld faced a fierce army of invaders, led by a power-hungry priest determined to become a god. With each reincarnation of the Elders, the battle for the portal between worlds has grown closer. But it all began with a storm…
“The Gathering Storm” – Excerpted from Project Prometheus: IN HER NAME
Aermórnosa, Ali-Antos, 9000 B.C.E.
A storm brewed on the horizon. From the turret above the city walls, Sargon could see its fury out over the sea. Electricity prickled along his arms and neck, and he knew this was no ordinary storm. Energy hummed on the wind that carried in from the sea. Already the waves grew high and violent around the port of the city below. This was a storm forged of magical power, and that meant only one thing…
“They are coming.”
The Akkadian didn’t need to turn to know that four others joined him along the high turret walls. They were joined by bonds of power, the power they had sworn to protect, he and these other Elders. Each had left home and family, casting aside their pasts for this calling. As one, they felt this moment arrive, and they were not surprised.
“Onuris has gathered his faithful. The Brotherhood are on the waves,” the voice that spoke beside him was deep and steady, though touched with a concern that caused Sargon’s brow to raise as he turned his gaze from the rapidly darkening sky to the giant at his right. Lugh was a wise man, known to speak his mind. Lugh’s talented hands crafted the magic that protected them all, and only he knew the correct combination of nine elemental properties that created that magic. And Lugh, the master craftsman, had molded the sacred objects housed within the Crophines Astenim.
Sargon turned restlessly to face the ocean once again as the ground rumbled beneath his feet. He didn’t like this. It took a tremendous amount of power to disrupt an entire ocean.
“They are stronger than we believed.” This came from behind him, the only female voice among them. The Gatekeeper, Csilla, stepped forward, her soft tones wavering with the tension they all felt. This was the moment they all dreaded, the moment when time returned to them. Death was not an option as long as their charges remained unhidden.
Through Sargon pulsed the flame of battle, and he could hear the drums of war growing louder. Onuris glutted his minions on the blood of nations, filled his own greedy maw with the souls of the dead and damned until his power rivaled even the Gods’. Still, Onuris wanted more. He wanted the Portal of Kronos to make himself immortal.
Sargon’s eyes narrowed. He would see to it that Onuris never unlocked the Portal or any of the secrets of Aermórnosa. His mazes and traps lined the walls and floors of the Crophines, and Lugh’s magic sealed over those. Still, the artifacts remained. They must make certain the artifacts, which opened the Portal, could not be reached and put into the hands of Onuris or his Brotherhood.
“We must go.” Mykalos, their Healer, voiced his very thought.
Sargon nodded. “Our charges must not remain on the island. Take all but the fifth key. Take your charges and hide them far away from this place and use whatever means you must to make certain they do not fall into the Brotherhood’s hands.”
He turned to study each face in turn and knew they thought as he did. Once they left this place, the time they once abandoned in their service would begin again and they would possess only one immortality – the very thing that Onuris fed on – their souls.
Grimly aware of the closing jaws of Fate, Sargon pushed away from the wall and strode toward the Crophines. As the First Elder, Prometheus gave up his immortality and risked the wrath of the Gods to save humanity from the darkness, so too would they risk the same to preserve creation from destruction. It was a price he knew they all paid willingly.
Like what you read here? You can find IN HER NAME at Desert Breeze Publishing!