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Storm Frost Mountain Maze

Storm Frost Mountain Maze
by Robert Schmigelsky

Cased in ice and snow,
artfully wove
above and

the distant, jagged
silhouettes of
mountain peaks

a deepening cloud
of mist. Before
you, the long,

of hills guarding chilled
rock, jut into
icy roads
marred by

Accompanied by
your companions
and the cold,

you endure, plod through
winter’s domain,
but recall

“Know many before you have sought out the hidden resting place of the dragon knights of Kalaran,” said the long-dead, ghostly-green form of a dragoon, draped in his flowing mithril blue plate, “before they could wake from their long slumber and reclaim their rightful place, riding amongst the high winds.”

You recall legends past of the dragoons of old, in their white Pegasus-winged boots, sailing and battling above the clouds in the sky before what was given to them was stolen and their ability – lost.

“A few have come wishing to do them harm; others to simply exploit them,” the revenant continued. “None have succeeded.”

“No matter your intentions, until what was taken is given back, and the legends of ages past return, only one shall defeat the mountain maze and find them – to choose to do them harm, keep them frozen or to awaken them from their slumber: to sail and battle in the skies once more.”

Ever heedful of the revenant’s words, your face tightened as you recalled the revenant’s final warning, spoken amongst broken granite columns within crumbling city walls standing before the mouth of the mountain maze:

“Now, leave or enter the mountain maze, but know this: should you choose to enter the mountain maze and brave the cold within; once inside those within cannot leave the way they entered. The only way out of the mountain maze is over the mountains or through death.”

“Choose wisely.”

Moving against the full fury of snow-carrying winds, you grimace once more, grit your teeth together
and trudge on through the snow, refusing to regret your choice.

You knew, although not always remembering it, that life at times called for hard choices and sometimes that meant trudging through the snow.

* * *

Robert William Shmigelsky is unapologetic in his pursuit of excellent high fantasy and has been writing fantasy for himself longer than he can remember, but has only recently begun to write for others.

Besides reading and writing, some of his hobbies include computers and medieval and ancient history. He has a dry sense of humor, which he blames his stepfather for. Also, he has a habit of making history jokes no one but he understands.

Robert is currently sifting through two of three novels he wrote in his younger years in an attempt to make them somewhat palatable, the first being the Gathering of the Gifts which he hopes to have accepted soon.

His first release, the aptly named Fragments Through Time, a poetry collection from Diminuendo Press, is available now.

What do you think is the most important part of a fantasy story?

Originality. If it has been done before--why do it?