“The age of heroes and saviors has long since past children. Those blasphemous beings are not coming to save you. Behave yourselves, and your imprisonment will be tolerable. Misbehave, and you will learn the meaning of the phrase, hell on earth,” the religious zealot of a matriarch shouted from above us.
In silence I watched her walk away from the barred ceiling of this dungeon. Little did she know how wrong she was about the age of heroes having past. The heroes of the past may be gone, but their children still live. Resisting the Order of Holy Light in small ways. Seeking those who possess untapped potential. Finding them by infiltrating orphanages like this one, which is why I am here. Sent to investigate the rumor that this particular orphanage houses three children of a forgotten hero, Mantior the Hammer. A rumor that turned out to be true. From the few days worth of observations, I suspect there are a few more than that here. Now I just have to wait until my comrades get closer to sneak those children out. It should only be another few hours before the matriarch sends in her goons to do roll call.
Standing up slowly, I walked over to the one wall that led outside. Placing my hands on the wall, I began weakening the wall. Letting my power flow through me. Given how crucial the element of surprise was, I was being careful. Keeping a watchful eye out on any curious children. Even one innocent scream could get me caught. Yet, only one young, dirt covered man approached me. His oddly sunken brown eyes watching me closely. I was about to say something when he held up his left palm. Revealing a large birthmark, in the shape of a hammer.
I whispered, “If your siblings are here get them ready. Soon you will have your first taste of freedom and a new life. If you have any suspicions of others like yourself here, get them ready as well.”
The young man smiled enough to light up his dirt covered skin before nodding. Walking over to a small group of children on the far wall. I noticed that group seemed to only interact with each other. From my observations, I guessed each one had untapped potential. I had to wonder if they sensed that in each other, and banded themselves together to survive this place. Perhaps one of them had the gift of the Seeker. If that was the case, they would invaluable to the resistance. I would have to find out for certain later. For now, I had another task that needed to completed soon.
A couple hours had passed before I took a few steps back. Knowing I created a decent sized hole in the wall, that would allow two people to crawl out side by side. Managing to do the best I could to strengthen the surrounding area. It would have to do for the time being since time was growing short. Assuming everything went according to plan they would never know until morning. Leaning against the wall I listened for the signal from the other side of the wall.
Two rapid knocks occurred in quick succession after about thirty minutes. I repeated the signal back to let them know everything was ready to do. Leaping back I watched, I watched the group of children I was rescuing approach.
I whispered, ” Approach the wall and the crawl forward. There are people waiting on the other side who will help you get out. I will follow you behind, once all of you are safe. ”
The young man who approached me earlier nodded. Before leading the group of children to the wall. He glanced back at me for a brief second before kneeling on all fours near the opening. Pointing at the hole and motioning for the younger children to go through first. His eyes watching them in an almost father-like stare. There was something oddly endearing about that.
I watched them crawl their way to freedom until only, the young man and myself remained. He stared up at me in silence for a few minutes.
I whispered, “We need to get moving soon,” getting down on all fours beside him. “They are safe, now come on,” making my way towards the opening. Looking to my side, to be certain he was following me.
He nodded before speeding up some. Doing his best to catch up to me. I let him go ahead of me, as the tunnel approached its end. Looking back over my shoulder to make sure no other children were following us.
A few minutes later we were outside. My three fellow members of the resistance were standing around the children. Keeping a watch over them as they waited for me to come out. I dusted myself off as I noticed Gibil approach me. A dull flame bound in a barely open fist. Casting a dim light over the area. Revealing Anemoi, and Borelis were there as well, to help us execute the other half of our plan.
Gibil said “There are more potential candidates than I thought there would be. We may have to keep a closer eye on this isolated orphanage than I originally suspected. Given how isolated this place is, it would make a decent base of operations,” looking at the children. Almost as if he was formulating a plan of attack, instead of escape.