The moon shone through the window, revealing many shelves inside the dark room. Only the candle in his hand gleamed in bright orange and yellow, the light moving along the stacks of books on the lower shelf. Some of the books were well used and in tatters, while others were virtually new and easy to recognise. She had a system for organising her books, he knew, but he could never figure it out – not fully. This only made him more excited, feeling as if he was on a grand adventure and explored an old forgotten dungeon. But as the light of the candle fell on a piece of cloth hanging on the wall, the illusion faded, and his mind once again turned to gloom.
The banner was made of red cloth with golden thread-work that depicted a blood moon eclipsed by a curved blade. It was the banner of his family, or rather, his tribe; the rulers of this world.
Fendrael’s eyes glistened in the candle light as he looked, his eyes almost as red as the moon on the banner.
But the banner represented something else to him, a society which he could not fully understand; a family he could not fully be a part of. Sometimes he wondered if he knew his mother at all. At times, she was understanding and warm, in others, she was brisk and secluded. Hiding herself in her library and immersing herself in her many books. Today was one of those days when briskness took control of her; and his father was not far behind in adding to the scolding, for he trusted his wife immensely. There was no such thing as being too strict with his son.
Fendrael felt his punishment to be uncalled for, being locked inside as he was. All he had done was asking an old man about the strange looking ornaments hanging from his beard, and commented on his funny accent…
Bored and bitter, he let out a sigh, blew out the candle, and let himself fall onto the only chair in the room behind him. The chair creaked dangerously under his weight. But instead of checking for damage, he furrowed his brow and remained on the seat, caring not for the scolding he would surely receive later.
Now, sitting comfortably, he stared at the ceiling that was as black as night itself. They say it is dangerous to look too deeply into the night, lest your mind traps itself in the void. Shuddering from the thought, his eyes drifted down to a table next to him. On it, there was a well worn book, half open and inviting. Curious, he grabbed it, but wrinkled his nose as a pungent smell entered his nostrils. The book was old (really old) and the leather cover seemed to barely hold the yellowed pages together. Holding it far from his face to avoid the smell, he read the title on the cover: “The Exodus Journal.”
There was no author on the cover, only the title. Figuring there was nothing else he could do, he placed the book back on the table, lit the candle again, and carefully turned to the first page. The pages were dry, but they still held, and the smell, that had made his nose wrinkle moments before, no longer affected him as he leaned forward and read the first sentence: