A figure wrapped in soft silks and furs waited in the center of a ring of stones. The bright moon was full. The chilled air still.
A shrouded figure slid from the woods. Pulling back their hood revealed a wrinkled and scarred face. A toothless grin spread across their face as they pointed a sharp nail at the bundled package carried by the other figure.
“You came to your senses, then,” a silky smooth voice said, in stark contrast to their outward appearance.
The figure nodded, and presented a small object in a tightly bound blanket. The witch took it, disappearing into the woods. Crows cawed, masking the sound of an infant’s cry.
At the top of a hill a dark haired man, dressed in leather armor, sat on a dark horse. At the side of the horse stood a shrouded figure, a grizzled hand resting on it’s mane. They both stared at the brilliant castle in the valley.
“Are you certain?” the man asked the witch.
“Yes, it is time. Time you go claim your birthright. Return to me only when you have succeeded.”
“And if I do not?”
The witch looked up, saying nothing.
The man recognized that look. He had seen it enough times when he was growing up under the care and tutelage of the witch. There was only one path forward for him.
The man nodded, and with a yell he kicked the sides of the horse, launching into a hard gallop towards the castle.