Inferno sat alone as he often did, being no more than five years of age, yet his young age did not spare him the taunts of local children and adults alike - several merchants had driven him away from the city: accusing the boy of frightening potential customers with his unusual appearance.
Thus Inferno found himself at the edge of the great forests overlooking the city of his father, the great King Equinox - Inferno wanted to be just like his father some day, strong and noble: yet his tiny heart often shattered as he knew Equinox had no love for a "foundling" such as himself.
Inferno spread one of his wings out and flapped it slightly, he was too young to fly yet he dreamt of it so often - every day he'd try and spread his wings in the hopes that eventually they would take him to the skies.
"..stupid wings.." Inferno sighed, folding them back and bowing his head "..stupid merchants.. stupid.. everything.." he muttered.
"..hello.." a voice suddenly spoke from behind, a young glowing figure with wings suddenly appearing next to Inferno - clearly male and wearing a small suit of armor despite being almost as young as Inferno himself in appearance.
Inferno jumped at the unexpected arrival "..eep!".
"oh! wait! please.. I'm sorry.. I didn't mean to scare you.." the figure began.
"I'm not scared!" Inferno protested.
"..you're not? I.." the figure said, tilting his head.
"of course not! I am the great and mighty Prince of Awalon!" Inferno declared.
"..Awalon?" the figure frowned, somewhat confused.
"no! Awal.. Aw.. A.. grr.." Inferno snapped.
"..you mean Avalon?" the figure asked.
"that's what I said!" Inferno exclaimed.
The figure nods a little and extends a glowing hand "..my name's Thor!".
Inferno blinked, leaning over and sniffing the hand a little - "...."
Thor tilted his head for a moment, wriggling his fingers "..uhm, whatcha doing?".
Inferno stopped sniffing as he looked to Thor "..you're glowing..".
Thor grinned, spreading his glowing wings out "I know! it's awesome isn't it? mother says I'm a Valkyrie - which makes me special!".
Inferno frowned, "..how so?"
Thor shrugged, still smiling "..dunno, just does.. what about you?".
Inferno looked at himself, "..I.. I'm a monster..".
Thor's smile didn't fade as he replied in a manner only a child could "..cool! I bet you're really strong!".
Inferno shook his head from side to side "..I'm not strong..".
Thor smirked and before Inferno knew what was happening he found himself lifted straight up in the air, alongside a sizeable clump of earth - "..well, mother taught me we Valkyrie are real strong! maybe monsters are strong too!".
"hey! put me down!" Inferno flailed, sure enough Thor soon lowered him back to the ground with ease.
"I better go home now, mother is expected me - we'll play again some time okay?" Thor smiled, running off into the forest.
"wait a minute! come back here!" Inferno yelled but it was too later - Thor had already vanished into the wilderness.
Inferno sighed and got back onto his feet before he slowly made his way back to the castle - as he did so a shadow suddenly fell over him and he looked up to see a very familar yet unexpected face.
"mother?!" Inferno gasped, sure enough the regal form of Queen Titania stood before him - kneeling down and extending her arms.
"hello, my brave little explorer" Titania said softly, Inferno running into her arms happily as she hugged him tight.
"mother! I saw a walkyrie.. I mean a wa- a.." Inferno began.
"..a Valkyrie?" Titania asked, letting Inferno go.
"that's what I said, mother! he looked funny - all glowy and-!" Inferno replied.
"..Inferno! don't be rude - he may think you look funny.. Valkyrie can not help that they glow.. it is part of what they are.." Titania lightly scolded.
"I'm sorry mother.." Inferno said, bowing his head.
Titania stood up and took Inferno's hand in her own, "..come along.." she said, to Inferno's surprise she headed towards the forest.
"..mother?" Inferno said, unsure as he saw the trees and dark paths.
"..don't worry - I have you.." Titania said, keeping a hold of Inferno's hand, the young Pegacorn's grip tigthening as he hurried along, keeping close to his mother.
Titania smiled softly and spread one of her wings gently over Inferno as they walked, "..I was heading to my special garden - I didn't expect you to be this far from the village but since you are here.. I think I shall show you it.. you'll like it..".
Inferno kept close as he looked around at the new sights and smells, the forest still dark and mysterious: "..are there strawberries?" he asks.
Titania chuckled a little "..yes, there are strawberries..".
Inferno's eyes lit up happily as he became more excited now, a skip in his step.
That was until the pair reached the end of the path, entering a clearing - it was there Inferno's joy turned to shock as he saw a burning hut and several glowing figures laying dead on the ground, many of them dead.
Titania instantly shielded Inferno with her wings as the sounds of footsteps approached, Inferno gripping to his mother's side as voices raged outside:
"what is the meaning of this atrocity!?" Titania exclaimed.
"it was the orders of King Equinox himself, my Lady - y-you should not be here!" a male voice replies.
"how dare you! I am Queen of Avalon! I go where I please! now what have you done?!" Titania growled.
"The Valkyrie are to be purged, it is the will of Equinox.." the male voice explains.
"Purged?! this is madness! where is he?! where is Equinox?!" Titania roared, spreading her wings in the process and charging forward - Inferno tumbling down in the process: the small Pegacorn momentarily forgotten as the Queen flew over to a crowd of armored guards.
Inferno shivered as he looked around at the burned hut and the numerous bodies, scrambling to his feet he ran to Titania - only to suddenly fall on his back as Thor leapt at him: the boy covered in ash, tears rolling down his face - contorted with fury as he began punching at Inferno over and over.
"..YOU! YOU DID THIS! YOU!" Thor yelled, overcome with fear and anger - Inferno yelping as a large fist collided with Thor and sent him tumbling backwards: the formidable form of Equinox soon towering over Inferno.
"..get up, you stupid boy.." Equinox growled, glaring at Inferno "..and stop that infernal noise!" he snapped, Inferno crying as he got to his feet - shaking visibly.
Thor let out a little roar as he charged at Equinox, only for several guards to overpower him - the King snorting as he drew his sword and moved over, shoving Inferno aside "..so, the Valkyrie wants to fight?".
"EQUINOX!" Titania roared, once again racing over to the scene - upon seeing his consort Equinox backed away from Thor, lowering his blade.
"..Titania? I.. you.. you shouldn't be here.." he said in surprise.
Titania lifted Inferno into her arms instantly, glaring at Equinox and the guards "..release the boy at once! do as I say!" she yelled.
"..Titania.. the boy.. he is dangerous.." Equinox began.
"..the only danger that boy faces is growing to be something like you!" Titania spat back.
The guards seemed concerned as Equinox's fists clenched tight, anger rising in his form as he looked ready to strike Titania down - eventually his anger disappeared and he waved a hand dismissively at the guards:
"..let the boy go..".
The guards did so and Thor raced off into the forest, as he did so Inferno yelled out - despite his bruises "..Thor! I'm sorry! Thor!".
Titania soon holds Inferno to her, glaring once more at Equinox as she whispered "..hush.. my child.. you have nothing to apologize for.." - "..you however.." she growled, addressing Equinox "..you have crossed a terrible treshhold today Equinox - may the Maker have mercy on your soul..".
Equinox simply stood his ground, "..Maker? what Maker?! tell me Titania - where's your Maker now?!" he exclaimed, showing the scene of carnage.
Titania spread her wings and flew from the area, "..blasphemous demon!" she snarls.
Equinox breathed heavily as he watched Titania fly away, keeping his hand on his sword before he span around violently and yelled at the guards: "..BURN IT DOWN! BURN IT ALL!".
That night was a restless one in the Royal Castle, Titania and Equinox argued for hours and Inferno lay in bed - each shout startling him as he resisted the urge to hide under the covers and drown out the misery all around him.
Equis sat nearby, looking out a window, he too was afraid yet he dared not show it - narrowing his eyes he looked to Inferno "..this is all *your* fault.. now go to sleep!".
Inferno shivered as he curled up, finally pulling the covers over his head as the heavy doors opened - Equis quickly returned to his own bed and hid under the covers as footsteps echoed across the room.
Inferno tried to stop shivering as he felt a presence get closer, keeping his eyes clenched shut as a figure sat down on his bed - then Inferno's shivering stopped as a gentle hand stroked across the covers:
"..forgive me.. my precious children.. Avalon needs it's King.. no matter how cruel.. we will forget this day.. for the good of Avalon.." Titania's voice echoed across the room.
Neither Inferno nor Equis answered as Titania remained in place - sitting on the bed and watching over her children through the entire night..
Meanwhile at the edge of the forest Thor emerged and looked over to the castle, glaring as he rubbed an injured winged - still covered in ash "..I'll get you for this.. some day.. I'll get you all.." he shivers.
"..dinnea ye waste ye're tears on them.." a voice spoke out from behind, Thor turning angrily.
"..w-who are you?" Thor growled, a short humanoid appearing from the forest - holding a small hammer in one hand.
"..just call me.. Credne.." the figure said with a smile..