It took far too long, but after a few days of making my leg injuries worse I discovered that I needed rest. A lot of it. Broken bones and torn tendons were not easy things for the human body to fix, and no amount of beatings from SEAL training will change that. The pain fades, like pain always does, but injuries remain no matter how very much or very little you care.
As it turns out, my legs weren't healed in any real way. They were just functional, but not healed. Trying to come up with a logical explanation failed, as the only answer I could find was that it was magic. I tried working some more, but then discovered that my legs would freeze for minutes at a time, and the episodes got worse. So I had no choice.
The villagers didn't seem to mind my break. After all, I had added several loaves of bread to the tables of every family. In fact, they even deemed my arrival a special enough occasion to kill a pig. The thing was rather fat, and probably due for slaughter sooner rather than later, but that was a coincidence I was more than willing to overlook.
It was a feast for the villagers, none of whom ever had a taste of meat save occasions like these. Quite a contrast to Silvana and Godfather, who dined on everything from birds to chickens every day. At the time I hated her for feasting while the villagers starved. Now, I am more understanding, but not by much.
The meat would be cooked in the traditional manner, which of course involved Silvana snatching away the better part of the pig for herself. I took the liberty to haggle for some salt and proceeded to introduce bacon to the villagers. The curing process would take a week, but that was acceptable. Then came the matter of the food division.
Between the offering to Silvana and the meat saved for the bacon only sad scraps remained for the villagers. What should have been sufficient food for weeks or even a month for the village was reduced down to bits and pieces that added up to a few meals. But where I lamented the glass was mostly empty the villagers argued that it was not, and that alone was cause for celebration. The villagers, being ever cheerful, thanked the heavens that everyone could receive a full cut.
Over the meals the villagers took their day off as a time to gossip about the latest wild news, me. Yes, me, a less than normal visitor who had become the subject of everyone's attention. Tales of wars, famines, and plagues were brushed past as the farmers took their time crafting ridiculously tall tales about my identity. I was an exiled prince, a fallen god, and everything in between. My protests fell on deaf ears, and my flimsy explanations on my origins were so obviously fake that a child would not believe me.
The general consensus at the end of the day was that I was an archmage traveled from the great Sect of Eternity, and had decided to stay behind in a tiny backwater village after being charmed by the pretty lady residing there. Of course, taking her with me back to my floating castle ringed with gold and jewels would not be appropriate, and for some reason Silvana was unwilling to follow me there. Stories being stories, they were so ridiculous that they were funny.
I did not realize that I was seeing the birth of a legend. My own, which would be told to every child in the Seven Skies for generations to come. I was far more interested in the farmer's tales. None were very interesting, for the most part. None except one. I did not know it at the time, but it was one of the most important moments in the history of this world.
"Now, gather round. Dis be a old story I bouta tell." Ambrose said. Children ran to the blacksmith as the villagers smiled. There was an eager glint in their wide eyes, but none of the excitement that came from hearing a new story. No, this was one they knew. But I didn't.
"Ten yaers go in our own village lived a family with heads so silver they could make coins. Silvana, her dada the lord, and her mama, the first silverhead here. She did run from the old, old, city of the great empire..." He paused for effect. "From the demons!"
Oohs and aahs from the children rose as their parents chuckled. "See, her name be Victoria, and she was a princess. Folks at the Sect called her Saintess, and she was powerful and knew magic. She loved our old lord when she first laid eyes on him, and their two children were Silvana, and her brother, Richard." I didn't pay much attention until I saw the dark looks on the villagers faces.
"After some time a wizard came, Zalam, and became Richard's teacher. He promised to hide em. But da demons found her." The blacksmith's voice grew quiet. "And in the deada night they attacked! Our lord drew his sword to fight and fight, and lightning fell from the sky when Victoria and Zalam casted their spells and magicks."
I shook my head. Of course the local lord had legends attached to him. Why else would the peasants obey them?
"The demons died and died and died, but there was too many. And our old lord fell to their unslaug!" He said, raising his arms. "But the boy Richard picked up his fathers' sword!" A cheer rose among the children.
"He fought and fought like the god of war. But there were so many demons, and one came out. The strongest. He was fire, a blazing fire! Do you remember which, children?"
"O,o, I know. Faellian." One of the boys spoke up. Eric, or his brother, I wasn't sure.
"Yes, Faellian, who folks in the cities call the fallen one. Zalam tried to fight him again and again, told the boy Richard to run. He told him he was the chosen, he would one day rise to vanquis him." Ambrose's voice grew quiet again. "He died saving his mother and sister. Faellian killed him."
"The wounds on the demon king were great, so he ran to the ninth hell where he came. But he died, the boy Richard. Chosen. But dead. Zalam stayed, he is our lord now. Our lady Silvana, his daughter. She lost them all, all her family in one night. She was a girl then, only ten." All the children's chatter faded away as the day became silent. I rolled my eyes. Some dramatic tales these villagers told.
The only interesting or realistic part of the tale would be the magic, funny as it sounds. But even then, I would bet my arm and legs that they were exaggerations. Maybe if they seemed like they understood magic any more than I did I would have asked them how it worked.
All legends and stories hold some element of truth. It was my mistake not recognizing how much this story held. A mistake that would not be corrected for far too long.