Previously in the Adventures of the Masters of the Universe stories by Iceman and Gbagok: The Empire of Anwat Gar returned to Eternia after disappearing thousands of years ago. He-Man and the Defenders of Eternia helped the deposed young Emperor Leon reclaim his throne from the evil warlord Jitsu. Sy-Clone, at first a pawn in Jitsu’s vile plotting, was reunited with his lover Su-Nami and together they defeated the traitor Ty-Fune, their one-time ally. In the end, Jitsu was defeated and thrown into the Dark Hemisphere where he was captured by the evil Skeletor.

Several months later, He-Man and the Defenders engaged another evil force, this one plotting to control the slave city of Targa. He-Man’s will and stamina were tested by his trials. His identity stripped from him by an evil spell, he was forced to fight as a slave in Targa’s arena. Yet good was once more triumphant as He-Man regained his memory and freed the enslaved Reptons--but not before the devious Snake Men obtained the Secret Liquid of Life with which they plan to revive their fallen lord King Hsss!

After the battle, He-Man and Teela journeyed outside the city, but were horrified to see an evil magic envelop Targa. The City vanished, along with all the other Defenders, King Randor, and Queen Marlena!

And now the Story continues in...




Prologue
30 Years Ago....
A lone figure kneels over a small, nondescript grave. Behind him, his village lies in ruins, nothing left but burned out huts and ash. The young man kneeling over the grave cries bitter tears when he feels a strange push of energy nearby. He looks to see a portal of light opening, and though it hurts the young man's eyes, he watches as a cloaked figure steps out from the glowing doorway.

The cloaked newcomer observes the ruined village, and then regards the young man. "You are Keldor, son of Kellisto?"


The young man rises quickly, and reaches for the knife sheathed on his belt. "Who are you?" the young Keldor demands. He cannot see the stranger's face, but he holds his knife ready for any attack.

The stranger waves his hand and the knife sails from Keldor's grasp and into the smoke of the ruined village. The stranger laughs bitterly, pleased by Keldor's shocked expression. "I mean you no harm, Keldor. On the contrary, I have come a long way to find you. This meeting was preordained." He walks to the grave behind Keldor. "It was the Eternians who killed her, was it not?"

Keldor refuses to cry in front of this stranger, but his voice cracks. "Yes. Their soldiers...the Elders' soldiers did all of this. We were cooperating with their edicts, and still they persecuted us! My brothers told me to stay away today, warned me that the Eternians would ask questions if they knew I was here. It was all because of me!"