Written by and copyright © by Brandon Gilreath

“Damn!” Pobo exclaimed as he looked at his timepiece. He was late, probably too late. He wiped the rain from his brow as his Turbodactyl raced onward through the cloudy night sky. He and his beast were both wounded and exhausted from the long journey.
Pobo though over the events of the past three days. So many deaths and so many tragedies. At least it is over now, he thought to himself. A lightning bolt flashed a few meters in front of them, briefly illuminating the plains below. He was very late indeed.
The Turbodactyl landed next to the beast and its impatient rider. The cloaked rider slid to the ground just as Pobo landed.
“You’re late,” the figure said in a rather commanding voice.
“I know, but give me a chance to explain,” Pobo replied as he jumped to the ground. He landed hard on his wounded right leg, causing him to collapse in pain. the cloaked figure rushed to his side, throwing back his wet hood and revealing his serpent features. He knelt beside his friend and sprayed a pinkish mist on his wounds.
“That will help with the pain over the next few hoursss, but you’d better get to a medic if you want to keep it.”
“Thanks Kobrator. Am I late?”
“I don’t know but I’d bet you were. What happened?”
“We ran into some of your leader’s Terroranadons. It took a lot out of him and cost us nearly half an hour,” Pobo explained to the double agent.
“You can explain on the way. We must hurry or it will be too late to save the towers,” the Snake Man said. “Let me help you.”
He lifted his human friend up and pushed him on to the back of his Protonatops. It looked a lot like a Bionatops but smaller, orange and only one horn. Kobrator then climbed up the beast himself and they headed north towards the Hall of Wisdom.

It took nearly four hours to get to the Hall of Wisdom. It was just past midnight which meant that without a miracle they were too late. The Protonatops quickly climbed the hill towards the beautiful palace.
The Hall of Wisdom never ceased to amaze all who laid eyes on it. It radiated and glowed with “the light of a million stars” as some had said. Its white marble walls not only contained all of Preternia’s history, but all the knowledge of the universe as well.
The two dismounted at the gates and walked as quickly as Pobo’s leg would allow down the seemingly endless corridor to the main chamber. They passed hundreds of closed doors that led to various libraries and various information centers. After a kilometer and a half the reached the Star Chamber, the main chamber where the Council of Elders met. Nearly a quarter of a kilometer from the entrance of the chamber sat the thirteen elders sitting in a semi-circle with the High Elder, Eldor, sitting at the top of the semi-circle. They were all staring at the travelers.
Pobo and Kobrator covered the distance as quickly as possible. Pobo’s leg gave out again and his serpent friend had to carry him the rest of the way. When they finally reached the elders he sat Pobo down at the opening of the semi-circle.
“What news do you bring us Pobo?” the elder to the left of Eldor asked.
“Hiss...Hiss,” the pain made him struggle to get the words out, “...has been banished another dimension...a...along with...a majority...of ...the Snake...Men.” He looked up as Kobrator sprayed more of the painkilling mist on his leg. “You don’t....need to sink....the towers.”
“I’m afraid it’s too late for that,” Eldor said.
“What of He-Ro?”
“And Tytus?”
He didn’t get a chance to finish as in the center of the semi-circle a brilliant sphere of white light appeared, easily outshining the Hall of Wisdom and causing all in the Star Chamber to cover their eyes. When the light vanished, before them stood a beautiful woman wearing red armour in the shape of a cobra and carrying a two meter staff as well.
“The Goddess!” one of the elders exclaimed with excitement and fear as the rest stood to show respect. Pobo wanted to stand but remained seated.
“Goddess, we are honored by your visit. What do you have to tell us this time?” Eldor inquired, sure that since Hiss had been vanquished and the Horde had been driven from this world she would have pleasant tidings for them. A visit from the Goddess was a rare occurrence that happened only about once every two years, if that. She was a being of pure good whom many Preternians thought may have been an angel. Others worshipped her lightly or in cult followings, even though she did not condone it. She was but an aid to good, not a deity.
“I’m afraid I do not have good news. I have learned that a great evil is coming to Preternia. An evil much more powerful than King Hiss or Hordak,” She said in her calm, melodic voice. Several gasps arose from the Council at the thought of evils worse than those they had already encountered. “But all hope is not lost. A defender will arise from the people. He will be powerful enough that the evil will not be capable of defeating him. But in order to defeat the evil he will need help. Surely evil would subdue the hero if it would be able to gain control of this place. You are to turn it into a hideous place that will turn all but the most demonic of evils and the bravest of heroes away.”
The elders gasped again. The Hall of Wisdom a place of horror? This couldn’t be possible. “When will the evil arrive?” and elder asked.
“It is uncertain. It could be months, years, decades, centuries or even millennia,” the Goddess answered, her voice at ease as always. Pobo thought he had enough strength to stand as the others were doing but he collapsed once more. The Goddess turned her attention towards the fallen man and began to walk towards him.
“You do not need to waste time on him Goddess, he is just a simple messenger,” one of the elders said. “Tell us more about how we should prepare for the evil.”
She ignored the elder and kept on walking towards Pobo. She kneeled beside him and placed her hands on his leg. He looked into her deep brown eyes which seemed to glow with life. For a few seconds his body was filled with an immense pleasure that surpassed all other pleasures on Preternia. When the pleasure subsided all of his pain had left and he saw that his leg was healed.
“Thank you,” he said
“It’s the least I could do,” she replied in her smooth soft voice as she turned back to the somewhat shocked elders. “Where would we be if we didn’t help each other?” The elders all looked dumbfounded.
She continued, “As I was saying our hero will need help. In addition to creating a fortress you must also forge magical weapons and armour for him. Two of the weapons will be swords which you will then magically halve, with one half containing nearly all of the power and the other will very little. The two powerful halves will remain here until they are needed. The other two will be hidden as all four halves will be the key to revealing the secrets contained here.
“And as a final instruction, you will need to compress all your power and knowledge into a ball of magic.”
“But won’t the castle need a guardian?” an elder asked.
“I will fill that role. Only the purest of good may be guardian of the castle.”
“How will we remember all you have told us?”
“I will place the memories inside you,” she said in her beautiful voice. With that two beams of light shot from the eyes of her snake staff which came together and then split into thirteen separate beams, each hitting an elder.
“I must leave now as I have other matters to attend to, but I will return when you have completed your tasks,” she told them. “Pobo, you can come with me. I will aid you in spreading the word of Hiss’s defeat. And you Kobrator, may also come as I will take you back to Snake Mountain and help with the rebirth of your people’s fallen empire.”
Pobo and Kobrator both looked at each other in shock that one of the most powerful beings in the universe actually knew their names. They walked towards her and then the trio disappeared in the same sphere of light that the Goddess had arrived in.
“You heard her. Let’s get to work,” Eldor commanded.

Over then next few weeks the Council concentrated all of their magic and turned the luminous Hall of Wisdom into a horrific castle with a hideous skull face. The marble melded into gray stones as their beautiful palace disappeared forever. Once they were satisfied with the castle the started creating several weapons and armours, some magical and some not. Several of Preternia’s heroes also donated their weapons for their future savior. They installed the most modern and advanced computer and defense systems as well, knowing that when battling an evil worse than Hiss or Hordak you could never have enough help.
Next, as one of the most important items the Goddess had requested, the elders created two powerful swords. Each was equal in power and strength, but at the same time had different abilities. They were both a brilliant silver and looked nearly identical except for a jewel in one of the swords. This sword was designated the Sword of Protection. The other was named the Sword of Power. The elders then magically halved the two swords so that each half looked like a complete sword but contained different amounts of power. The two more powerful halves were placed inside the castle. The other two would be hidden by the Goddess when she arrived.
When they had finished she arrived like she had said and was quite pleased.
“We have decided to call the place Castle Grayskull,” Eldor said proudly.
“It is perfect,” she replied, gazing across the horrific structure. She noticed that even the birds and animals were frightened by it. It would surely be of great help to the hero.
“Here are the two less powerful halves of the swords,” an elder said as her handed them to her. “The other two are inside as you requested.”
“I will go place them in their hiding places. I will return shortly. You know what to do now,” she said to them solemnly.
“Yes, let us go, my friends,” Eldor said to the rest of the Council. One by one they slowly walked into Grayskull knowing their fate. The jawbridge closed behind them when the last one had entered. They went to the center of the castle and formed a circle and began to deeply concentrate. Soon the dark castle shined with the light of a billion suns as the elders started to glow and then transformed into an orb of knowledge, magic, and power. The orb moved down into the depths, pasts the frightening dungeon and into the catacombs to its designated resting place.
When the Goddess returned she sealed the castle and knew all there was to do now was to wait for the dreaded evil and the great hero to arrive.

The Grayskull Library