Three things before you read this:
1 - This is the very first, and I mean very first draft of Eldala. Please forgive the typos, misspellings, punctuation, blah, blah, blah. Back then, I was calling it Kiran (and yes, I was spelling his name differently).
2 - I was so afraid of the first words of my first novel that "a dark and stormy night" just made it easier. Thank you, Snoopy and Edward George Bulwer-Lytton for those words.
3 - If you haven't yet read Eldala, even this first draft chapter has spoilers, so be warned.
Kiran First Draft
It was a dark and stormy night. Kiran had planned to go into the village of Arath to deliver his father’s pottery, but the dark clouds had discouraged his departure. Standing in the doorway, enjoying the rain, his mother called to him. He went to her reluctantly.
“what is it?” he asked.
“I need a blanket from the trunk near the fireplace,” Kara answered.
Kiran opened the trunk, searching for the red blanket that his mother used on cold nights like this one. Something fluttered to the floor as he took the blanket out. He picked it up. It looked as if it had been written hurriedly, and it was on royal looking parchment. Letting his curiosity get the better of him, he took it to the firelight and began to read.
“please watch over this child. He is my son and his life is in danger. When he is a man, no older than twenty, you must tell him of his parentage. It is essential that he knows he is my son. He has a task of great importance.”
It was signed King Arathor.
Kiran felt a knot forming in his stomach. What did this mean?
‘Kiran, did you find the blanket?’ his mother asked.
“yes, I’ll be there in a moment.”
“please hurry, son. I'm so cold,” she urged.
Kiran slowly entered her room. She looked so small and fragile lying there in her bed. It had been days since she had been up and he was becoming more concerned for her health. When she had first come down with a fever, the village doctor had warned her to stay in bed but she had ignored him and had kept up with the chores. Kiran had tried to get her to rest but she had stubbornly refused. Now she was worse than before and he was quite concerned about her. She had been his stability, his rock and now it was his place to care for her, to be strong for her.
“what’s wrong?” she asked.
Kiran hesitated to answer. He felt small and shy, just as he had when he was a child and had been caught in doing something wrong. But he was almost twenty and knew he had to face this.
“I found this letter,” he admitted.
“I was afraid of that,: she said. “ we were going to tell you about that soon, but I fear the day has arrived and I am quite unprepared for this.”
Kiran waited for her to collect her thoughts. When she began, there were tears in her eyes.
“we found you on the road between here and Pent,’ she began. “you were wrapped in rich blankets and tucked into a basket. Your cries were so mournful. We had to take you in. we couldn’t just leave you on the road.” She paused for a moment and then continued. “at first, your father Kale was against keeping you, but I pleaded with him to let me keep you and raise you as our son. He thought it would be too dangerous. At the time, we lived in Pent, but we moved here so you would be safe, not so exposed to the dangers.”
“who am I?” Kiran asked.
“you are the son of the true king of Teleria, King Arathor.”
The knot that had begun to form earlier began to grow tighter. His mind reeled with the weight of her words. The world he had once thought of as safe and small had suddenly grown much larger. He couldn’t even imagine the implications of this news.
“I’m sorry,” he said, and ran out of the house.