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There are many legends, spreading far and wide across the world. Many tales that have long lost their original meaning.
And there is a legion of those whose only purpose in life is to carry the ancient myths and legends to ears that never heard them before. These men and women are known as the storytellers, the description of their profession sometimes being their only name known to anybody else then themselves.
Many are those who tried to escape their past by taking the path of a storyteller. Sometimes what they escaped was not only the past. Sometimes it was themselves. And more often then not, their past found them one day.
This tale will be about other tales, of lies within lies. For not always all is what it seems to be, and the bottom might be more then double...
TALE OF THE STORYTELLER
The inn was crowded, patrons occupying almost every stool and table that was avaible. From the moment when the sun set, all talk slowly faded, and one by one the people have sat still, turning their heads towards the door. They waited. Waited for him to come.
And, even though on the outside a storm raged, lightnings splitting the sky one by one and the overwhelming roar of thunder seemed to shake the universe itself, he still came as he did every seventh night.
The door slowly creaked open with an ominous sound. Several more superstitious of the folk grasped whatever weapon - or its substitute - they had at hand, just in case the guest turned out to be someone (or indeed something) else. One or two began whispering the words "A spiritu dominatus...", beginning of and ancient prayer to He who Watches Over Us.
In the doorframe stood a single, robed figure. They recognized the storyteller.
There were many things said about him.
Some old men, shrivelled corpses that in their days were peasants and mercenaries, sworn they saw him coming to the "Green Knight" in their youth, as did their fathers and fathers of their fathers. Thay said that since back then he has not aged at all. But the young ones said that the age must have clouded their minds, for no man could live that long. Very same words that the current elder used to say when they were of their age.
Once, a drunken strongman from a passing carnival troupe, monster of a man who crushed steel hooves with a single hand without as much as breaking out a sweat, was boasting that he could defeat any of the men present in armwrestling. And, not surprisingly, he proceeded to do so. All the time, the storyteller was watching. Finally, having beaten all the others, the bully challenged the old man. Without a word, the storyteller rose from his seat in the corner and sat in front of him, settling his elbow on the table, hand ready to accept one of his opponent.
At first the outcome seemed perfectly clear as quickly the storyteller's hand has almost touched the table... but then, something strange happened. It did not move a hairs breadth further. And no matter how much the bully struggled, it began to rise. The veins stood out on the strongman's forehead, his face turning red with effort, and still inch by inch the storyteller was slowly moving towards the point of balance - and then further.
"You cannot win!" the bully cried out. The storyteller did not answer, and silently he continued to push his opponents arm towards the surface. When it was all clear that he could not win, the strongman tried to pull his hand free, but alas he found that the old mans grip was as firm as if his hand was made not of flesh but of strongest steel. In desperation, he made one final push, and suddenly screamed, his forearm twisting at an impossible angle from the rest of his arm. Holding up the broken arm with his other, he scuttled away from the table in shame, when the old man stood up without making a single sound and proceeded back to the corner where he sat before he was challenged.
Nobody asked him his name, because they already knew that all the answer they would receive would be "I have no name other then "storyteller", my friend. I never had.", accompanied by that strange excusing smile of his. And they could not help but know it was a lie.
Some speculated that maybe he was an outcast son of a king from a faraway land. Others thought that he must have been a mercenary or soldier of some kind, judging from his sheer physical strength. Others yet insisted that he could be no mortal man but a soul forever damned, cursed wander the land of the living in search for redemption.
They never knew how close _all_ of them were to the truth. And at the same time, how far.
This is all I have managed to write thus far.
Somehow, the whole concept was started by Hammerfall's "A Legend Reborn" - however not by the vocals but the instrumental part. And then my hyperactive imagination kicked in.
I like it, I got confused at one part about the legends behind him (thou mainly to me not reading properly) but it seems good so far. I good short extract about a person I think many could get into.