There he sat in his cell alone for two weeks straight. It seemed like the rats were his only companions. He kept waiting for the king’s pardon, but he did not know if it would ever come. He knew that he could not surrender the Orb, no matter what. Towards the end, the hard tack was soft and the beans were hard. It appeared that there was no end to his misery.
And then, the jailer opened up the jail cell.
“Er. Seljuk has secured your release,” he said.
“Praise Releven! Er. Seljuk had finally come through. They handed him a knapsack with his belongings. He sidled up next to the guard. “What is the basis of my release?” he asked.
“I am not authorized to say,” said the guard.
Poxig had to appear in court in order to clear his name. As soon as he entered the courtroom, Er. Seljuk was there in order to be his defense attorney.
“The amanuensis must write,” said the guard “Here stands the accused, as one who was indicted by the king, his majesty, Charles I. This elf is accused of conspiring to aid the king’s enemies.”
Poxig could not believe the charges that he had heard. But he had to admit that after all he’d been through, it would take a miracle to get him through this ordeal. He was expected to be above the level of a normal elf, and it was well-known that everyone was prejudiced against elves since the wars of religion.
Er. Seljuk gave his opening remarks: “Ladies and Gentlemen of the jury, this elf , Poxig of Excelsior, stands before you accused of treason. There has been no evidence to suggest that this is true. We have seen a horrible prejudice in our land. Elves are decent creatures, wise, and rational. The magic arts flow through many of their veins. I have known the accused for almost a year, and have never known him to do anything untoward or unbecoming of a citizen of Marginalia.”
Someone shouted from the crowd: “Enough of this! Away with this elf!”
“I plead with you, ladies and gentlemen, not to be withholding due process from Poxig the elf,” said Seljuk.
“What crime has he committed?” said another voice.
“We have a letter from the royal pen of King Charles. He has addressed it to the accused.”
“Read it!” came a voice from the crowd.
She began to read:
“Concerning the fate of one treasonous to the Throne,
I have never received a letter from any elf, but yours struck my interest. Since my father fought against the king of Elvira in the wars of religion, I have looked for a way to pardon them from the penalty of the law.
I had to imprison you because you claimed to possess the missing orb. Your father stole it from my treasury years ago. I have the remaining 3 orbs in my possession. They will belong to the light warriors, who according to prophecy, will restore our land by finding the cause of the earth’s rot.
If you return the orb to me, I will secure your release from the depths of the dungeon. I want to determine if Emissary Seljuk is right that you might be the light warrior who has come into the world to save it from the pernicious evil that causes its rot.
If you heed my call, I will give you a quest. If you succeed in this quest, then I will know that you are truly a light warrior from the legend of the prophecy. In any case, I set you free from any indictment of this court. You may only see my face if you bring the Orb!
His Royal Highness,