A Tale of Mask and Sword - IC
High Chancellor Artemis Falkland leaned over a stained glass window at the top of the Audumsburg Cathedral's tallest spire, staring out at the city as the setting sun bathed it in a red-orange glow. His eyebrows were furrowed, and his thin lips were creased into a frown. "It looks so peaceful," he sighed to the man who stood some distance behind him. "And yet, I fear that it will all change soon. Audumsburg is about to feel the hands of change once again mold its face to a new shape. The Oracle hasn't seen anything, but he agrees." Artemis turned away from the window and looked into the eyes of the other man, who hadn't moved or spoken the whole time they had been in the spire. "Do you think it will work? Do you think that they will be able to stop the crisis before it happens?" Artemis asked the man. Finally the man shifted, shoulders as wide as a barrel arching back, and replied, "No one can tell for sure, Artemis. Not even the Oracle. What happens in the days to come will rest in the hands of the gods."
"I suppose you're right, Michael," Artemis said, and after a pause, "... You know, I'll need you to test them. Each is a master of their own unique talent, but we need to know how they'll work as a team. If they don't function, it's back to the drawing boards. If they succeed, then we may have just discovered the greatest force the world has seen since the days of the Angels." Michael nodded his agreement, and said, "Don't worry, Artemis. By the time I've tested them, we'll know if they're capable." As the man named Michael concluded his statement, the two men shook hands, and departed from the cathedral. When they exited, they made sure that they did not leave at the same time, each taking a different path out of the building. Chancellor Falkland strode towards the palace, Michael into the alleys, each preparing for the arduous road that lay ahead.
Meanwhile, amongst the hustle and bustle of carriages, pedestrians, and the very occasional automobile, the men and women that Chancellor Falkland spoke of went on with their daily lives. Some of them had already been recruited by Falkland. The rest were about to be. None of them realized that their lives were about to change forever. Within a few days, they would meet together for the first time, on a secret quest to save Audumsburg. Few would know of the crisis, and fewer still would know of their mission to stop it. As the Chancellor entered the palace's front entrance, all of his thoughts and prayers went to the success of they who would soon be known as the Guiding Light; the saviors of Audumsburg.