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        "The Tancred Wars"
        Tale 1 of "The Rouge Prince Ansil"
        written by gyps
 

It was such a warm quiet evening. The suns were setting and Ansil rested on
one of the many stone benches encircling his familys' ancestral tombs.
There were many generations of Kings entombed here, and with them many
secrets. Many of these secrets were  just now becoming clear. He affixed
his thought recorder to his temple, one of the gifts left to
him by his grandfather. Such an elegant device, he pondered. So simple to
use, just place at the temple and all thoughts are recorded for future
reference. He hardly knew where to begin. The events of the past days
reeled in his mind, he feared his recording would be a jumble of emotional
thoughts. He tried to focus on the important issues - but which ones held
precedence?
Certainly his victory over the notorious Jester a prime issue. The
restoration of his familys' power, the peace his people could finally enjoy
were paramount; however, all he could think of was the emptiness he felt
inside, the longing for his dear Chiana. His mind was preoccupied with
memories of her cool gray skin, her beautiful black eyes, so much like his
own.
How could life deal him such a hand?! He had known love unlike any he had
ever heard of, ever felt, and his unrequited heart was breaking. But his
sense of responsibility and dedication to his people win in the end. How
long would he have to suffer so? Forever, he knows he will spend a lifetime
sorting recent events. He may as well start now.

It all started one early morning in the hills near his home. The family
manor was beautiful in his memory, but lately it had been neglected and
fell into near ruin. The once beautiful grounds were unkept. The stately
walls were crumbling. There was no time or money necessary to keep them in
tact. The wars had been raging for many cycles, and all efforts were
centered on the battle at hand. He escaped to the nearby woods so he could
record his thoughts without fear of being discovered. He sat quietly atop a
hill, plotting his next move against the infamous Jester, so named for his
habit of toying with his enemies - driving them insane with his clever
tricks. Jester was not one for a direct approach to battle. He was a coward
really, not willing to face his opponents head on.
He first drove them mad. Ansil's father Yildrim, once a proud and beloved
King, was a shell of the man he had known as a boy. His hatred for Jester
had grown to unimaginable heights. The trolls lived for many cycles beyond
his own, and the hatred was deep seeded in his family. He knew that HE must
be the one to finally destroy this threat, for the generations ended with
him. He wanted a wife and children someday, but in the war-torn atmosphere
of his world, this was not likely. He stared aimlessly at the sky that
morning, the two suns of his world looming low.
He began to recite the events of the last few days when he had an
overwhelming sense of danger approaching. His skin glistened in the early
suns' light, and suddenly every follicle of hair stood at attention. He was
afraid, but knew that this was not his enemy approaching. His family has
the ability to sense things unlike anyone else on his world. He was not
sure why, but they were different. His skin secreted a light oil when
stimulated, and this was a warning device. He could smell, as well as hear
the approaching figures. They were not his own kind, nor the Mamluks he
feared so. They were alien, and this sent him into a spin. Were there
beings on his world that no one knew of?
He always had a suspicion that there were other worlds, but this had not
been proven. Science and research had been halted in order to focus on the
immediate dangers. War had ravaged his world. He knew from his senses that
all things would change. In a moment, his world would be turned upside
down. He scurried up a huge gumbo tree. He could hardly
believe his eyes. There was a very large being, with the presence of a
warrior, moving through the trees. He had long robes, and long "hair"
dangling down his back - he had never seen hair like this before, thick,
skin- toned appendages, hanging loosely down this odd creature's back.
Could this be some unknown trick, some unknown evil created by Jester sent
to dispatch him?
Behind him followed another strange creature, not unlike himself, but very
different indeed. His eyes were blue, how could this be? Most creatures on
his world had black eyes. "The suns' light must hurt this poor soul's
eyes.." he thought.
He decided quickly that these two were no threat to him. He watched them as
they passed under his refuge. They argued, or it seemed as though they were
arguing. The one more like himself mentioned something about running into a
"fast food joint." What could he possibly mean by this? Fast food? What is
fast food? A creature that escapes capture with it's speed?
He jumped effortlessly to the ground behind the two. They spun around to
see Ansil, unarmed yet confident and apparently unafraid.
"My name is John Crichton," the small one said, "and this is D'Argo."

Ansil was amazed at these two. Seeing John's blue eyes up close was
intriguing, he had not seen eyes so beautiful before.
"You speak my language, yet you cannot be from Gelimer, you are from a
place I do not know, explain yourselves!"
"It's the translator microbes." John said hesitantly.
Ansil knew by his senses that these two were  not of his world, he was
cautious and bewildered. He did not know what John meant, but decided not
to let on, as he may appear weak, this mystery would have to go unanswered
for now.
"Are you not from this world, how can this be?"
"No, we are from worlds far from here, and both from different ones." said
D'Argo. Ansil suspected as much. He was stunned and it showed. His people
had dreamed of other planets with life., Now, in a single moment,
everything had changed.
D'Argo began to say "But we thought.........."  John interrupted, knowing
they better not say too much for now, for fear of causing this poor boy too
much distress. "So, what is your name?" John blurted out...
"Ansil Calatrava, son of Yildrim. I am Prince of this kingdom, my father
King. Why have you come here?"
John wasn't sure how to answer, and before he could reply, D'Argo said "We
came in response to a signal we intercepted on our ship, it  has a
signature we recognize." John raised his eyebrows, "Now you've done it,
D'Argo", he mumbled. "This poor guy is confused enough already, damned
insensitive Luxans," John thought. He elbowed D'Argo in the chest.
Ansil watched them and was amused by their behavior, he knew these two
posed no threat. He was overtaken by the idea that they may be able to help
his people. He was frightened and truly excited.
His skin began to glisten, a sign of excitement. He must not show fear! He
must elicit the help of these strange beings. He knew in a moment the
answer to his dilemma. A feeling of joy overshadowed his fear, there are so
many questions! Translator microbes,
other worlds, blue eyes, that strange hair of D'Argo's, but he knows these
will be answered in time. He must take them quickly to his manor, they must
not run into any Mamluks, or even other Gelimers - He must consult his
father immediately. Even though Yildrim is near death, his sanity almost
gone, he will know what to do.
"Please, you must come with me" Ansil said. "It will not be safe here soon,
come to my home, I can offer you food and a safe place to rest." John
looked at D'Argo as if to say, keep your Luxan mouth shut and come on!
D'Argo got the hint, and held out his arm to signal Ansil to lead the way.
As they walked, John was captivated by Ansil. He is not very tall, yet fit
and muscular and very regal. His hair is a silvery gray and shines in the
sun, or suns as there are two. It reminds him of Chiana's hair, in fact he
reminds him a lot of Chiana. His skin is a golden bronze and appears oily,
is this sweat? But the climate is temperate - the suns being very distant.
His eyes are black, again reminding him of Chiana. He carries himself in a
manner befitting a prince.
"Hey Ansil, love the boots!"
"Thank you, they were a gift from my grandfather. They are colored by the
pods from those wonderful Gumbo trees." Ansil replied.
John looked back at the trees, from which they have just emerged. They do
indeed have deep blue pods growing from the ends of the branches. The inner
branches are bare, but at the ends are fine green nettles and large blue
pods, seeds he figured. The roads are a fine white sand, with no debris.
"There are plenty of those pods and nettles on the ground, but not on the
road!" John commented.
"We take great pride in our roads, and they are replenished often with new
sand that has been bleached." Ansil stopped himself before adding "even in
the midst of war, we care for our roads," he must earn their trust and not
speak too soon of war. "We must hurry."
The landscape is mostly flat, and they emerged from the few hills there are
to see a
huge city. "This is my kingdom, Gelimer, my manor is the nearest house to
the east."
They look east, the suns have risen only a bit higher. The sky was filled
with wispy orange clouds. The horizon is hard to distinguish from the
orangish brown sand.
"On my world the sun rises in the east too, but we have only one." John
said.
"I cannot imagine a world with one sun, is this why your eyes are blue? Do
all your people have such eyes? Here we all have dark eyes, except for the
Mamluks, they live underground and their eyes are yellow. What is your
world's name? We call our planet Tancred."  Ansil could not conceal his
emotion at the mention of the Mamluks, John decided not to pry, and gave
D'Argo another one of his looks. "Earth, we call my world Earth, and
actually, there's blue, green, brown, and a few with pink eyes! Some even
have eyes called hazel that change color depending on the color of their
clothing, it's all a matter of genetics."
Ansil was astonished by this, but quickly diverted as they reached the
grounds of his home. He looked forward to learning all about these odd
creatures, but there were more important issues at hand. "This way" he
motioned, and they entered a door concealed by odd looking plants. They
emerged into a room with high ceilings and stone walls covered
with tapestry-like material.
"Wow, does King Arthur live here?"
"No, King Yildrim, my father."
John smiled and D'Argo rolled his eyes.
"Let me call for food and find my mother, please rest here and i will
return promptly."
D'Argo sat on one of the benches as John inspected the wall hangings.
"Unbelievable! D'Argo, check out the work in these things! And watch what
you say -
these people obviously haven't made contact yet. Something is very
wrong here, and we better be careful how we handle it."
"Ok, ok, but why did Aeryn recognize the signature of that signal if these
people have not been visited before?"
"I guess we'll find out soon enough D'Argo."