Albalón

The ancient hall of Albalone

lies ruined, formless blocks of stone

covered up by roots and briar

Fell Albalone, White Keep of Fire.

Broken pillars, scraping sky

amidst the elms that, blackened, lie,

Beyond the mountains of the Ridge,

past the trees of Calvaredge,

beyond the icy Carcaross,

and Dragon’s Bane, and Fenning-Cross.

There lie the stones of Albalone,

smooth as skin and bare as bone,

where dwelt the Elves in times long past,

beyond the snow of Lucien’s Pass.

Eryndor, as legends say,

stole the sun, for fear of day,

and locked her up in dungeons deep,

in Albalone, the Elven-Keep.

Locked away, sun-maiden fair

with fiery starlight in her hair,

in her eyes shone brilliant light.

The earth was plunged in endless night.

The Star-King, king of Dark and Death,

now ruled from Sea to Halbereth,

hemmed by mountains North and West,

and roamed by one who would not rest.

The Second Son, the Dragon-Prince

loved but one, and loved none since

Brought the sun to Albalone,

and left again, yet left alone,

still haunted by star-shining eyes,

a stony heart, an age of lies,

and full of darkness, left to roam

a vagrant Prince without a home.

He wandered far, and farther yet,

seeking naught but to forget,

yet high above, the stars still shone,

a mem’ry, though the light was gone.

He hurried, why he could not say,

and wandered long a weary way

and came again to Albalone

his heart within, yet never home.

Deep below the castle’s halls

The towers high and tow’ring walls

Below the basement, deep and dim

Lay ancient prisons, grave and grim.

So many mortals, locked away

Have suffered here, day after day

in lightless cells, so far below

the bravest men dare not to go.

Nightmares here, instead of dreams

wake those who sleep amidst the screams

Only torchlight, in the murk

shines into shade where shadows lurk.

T’was here the dragon-prince returned

the darkest depths where torches burned

amidst the screams of fear and pain,

the dragon-prince met sun again.

Reunited, Sun and Sky,

amid the screams of those who die

crouched in darkness, hand in hand,

and voices low, they formed a plan.

The shining sun, locked in the night

filled the deeps with burning light,

With magic strong, she set aflame

wood, and stone, and steel the same.

Burning now, with brilliant light,

Sun and Star took up their flight

And far below, the darkest depths

Burned stone to flame where flame once slept

Lit up to the fiery stars

Melted iron, beams and bars

the tortured souls of Albalone

Fled aflame, or burned to bone.

Second Prince, you so despise

the light of fire in your eyes,

burned to dust, your only home

you shed no tears for Albalone,

You shed no tears for those who die

In the fires that scorch the sky.

The Dragon Prince became the dawn

and with the Sun, bore ever on,

Bringing life where once was death

from sea, to Ridge, to Halbereth,

brought back the day, defeated night

Sun and Sky in endless flight.

Yet deep below, the darkness sleeps

Below the stones of Elven-Keep,

And legends say, Death will return

to dim the Earth—and watch it burn.

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