There may be many interpretations of what began here in the future, written by those who come after us, if we are victorious. If we are not, then we will no doubt be slandered much more openly by our enemies, and their descendants. I have never been one for dressing up events to please a crowd; in fact, it has been one of my great vexations in my long life.
This is a true account of the rebirth of Haven, in the Year of Our Lord 1512. What time they may reckon here in Haven, or in the place called Amber, we do not know. There are many things we do not know, but some we do. Here are the facts.
I am Mordecai. At times I have been Mordecai Eberhardt, at others Mordecai the Wolf, I was known as the Black Jackal of the Belfir Pass. For many years now, simply Mordecai has been sufficient. Those who’s tales merge with mine at the re-discovery of Haven are Ilayne, a boyish woman who’s world cruelly treated her, but who has surprising courage for one of her gender. Evangeline, another outcast, a survivor, who has memories of the true Earth but has them muddied by her long exile. Morgana, yet a third lady, a beautiful woman of a backwater court or some place enchanted, who’s keen mind delights in all the modern things she sees about her. And then Dominic, a good, fighting man who is a bit rough, perhaps, but seems to have suffered a fall in his status from enemies of his family, so that attitude can hardly be faulted.
It was the five of us who came to the place called Haven. Drawn to it by people we had trusted, people who should have been long dead. Each of us bore the sign of Haven, and it was both our guide to the place, and our key to open it. There we discovered many things. Marvels of magic designed to serve and outfit us. A great palace of a place, but empty, forsaken. And many documents, including a letter that told us we were all of one blood. Nobles, of a place called Amber. Hidden away, each of us, so that we might not suffer at the hands of our family’s enemies, nor be used against our sires as they fought.
The news was very grim. It seems that Amber has fallen, succumbed to attack in a war against some kind of force called Chaos. Our family may be entirely dead, save for one lone woman, hiding all this time. If anything is to be saved, it is for us to save it. Most telling of all that there is no support from the outside was the Crown and Scepter of Amber, left for us. No king would leave such behind for so long, so it must be that this King Eric cannot regain it. The third item of Kingship, a great ruby, is lost, no doubt pillaged by some agent of Amber’s enemies.
There is much that is confusing. This Haven leads to many places, worlds of magic or other strangeness. We essayed a journey to meet our hidden relative, and found the natives of that place hostile in the extreme, and armed with wondrous guns of exceptional craftsmanship. Regrettably, we were forced to withdraw. I think perhaps Dominic and I could have essayed the journey, but for the sake of the ladies it was best not to press the issue.
Returning to Haven to tend our wounds, we were assaulted yet again. This time Demons, true, horrific demons from hell, had somehow breached the door from whence came Elaine, without aid of key or guide. We shall have to discover how they managed that trick, and deny it to them. The demons were repelled, and Ilayne was distraught over the fate of her people. Sadly, we could not at that time engage any more of their forces. The demons were brutal and vile, having to be killed several times before they would finally die, and we were too wounded after both our battles to continue.
For the sake of Ilayne, we have agreed not to destroy the door to her overthrown world, but for now the door is barred and we wait. There is tension among us, a testing of our new companionship, but there is camaraderie too. Trust is growing, all the signs are auspicious that we shall join together, and conquer our foes.
Thus began Haven. Thus it rises. God willing, this is the first in a series of tales of how the Chaos was beaten down, Amber reclaimed, and how lost children regained their inheritance.