1 Prologue

Standing in the vast battlefield with burning chariots, a mountain of corpses, blood-dyes soil, and orange sun setting on the horizon, warriors fiercely confronting each other. With the sounding of the Shankha, the end of the day's battle was announced.

The armies of both sides prepared to retreat and foot soldiers began to clean the corpses of their respective armies for a proper funeral to prevent the decay of dead bodies. A tragic scene could be witnessed as hundred of thousands of the dead bodies of soldiers, elephants, horses lays in the vast expanse of the battlefield as the red sunsets on the horizon.

In the middle of the battlefield stands a man with his fist clenched on a long curved sword with dripping blood as he gazes lifelessly in front of him. He had blue eyes and long black hair draped on his shoulders with a silver chest plate and bracers covering his chest and wrists. A white bow made of bones hung on his right shoulder and a long curved sword sheath is tied to his waist with a belt. There is a big gash on the right side of his waist and various incision here and there on his body. In front of him lies the body of a warrior with golden armor and long orange hair swaying in the wind.

There is a tranquil expression on the orange hair warrior's face as if he had achieved Moksha and is relieved from all his burdens and duties. As the black-haired warrior stares at the lifeless body in front of tears flow from his eyes as the last words of the man before him echoes in his ears,

"Rudra!!!... Rudra my friend!! No matter who wins this war, as long as you survive. Remember this you are the person whom I respected the most both in character and bravery. Don't get blinded by the glory of the crown as it is temporary, numerous kings and emperors rise and fell. But the legend of a brave and righteous warrior always remains. This is the end of my journey with you from this world. Live well! My friend!.... Live well!!!"

As Rudra turned around he was greeted by a messenger. The messenger bowed and saluted him,

"Pranaam! Maharathi Rudra! The supreme commander has commanded all of the Rathis of the army to retire to their respective camps and get treated and well-rested of their wounds and fatigue. There will be a strategic meeting later at night, the presence of all Rathis is requested."

"Alright! I will be present for the meeting. For now, leave me alone for a moment" replied Rudra. The messenger bowed and left leaving Rudra alone who once again stood there and gazed at the setting sun. As the preparation for the funeral was all done, Rudra personally carried the dead body of his friend on his shoulders and laid him on the top of the funeral and he cremated the body and left his friend on his journey to heaven. He sighed and remembered the principle truth of the universe,

"Everything that is born in this world will die someday. Some die early, some die late. Nothing is eternal, Nothing!!"

Lost in his thoughts, he slowly walked away as he arrived in front of his camp. As he was about to enter the camp, he was pulled out of his thoughts by a voice,

"Don't be lost so much in your worries, Maharathi Rudra!"

Rudra turned around and was greeted by a person in yellow robes whose appearance is of a beautiful young man with the beauty of blooming youth, his dark complexion is more effulgent than a million suns, and an enchanting smile that plays on his lips, giving a glimpse of teeth that put the most lustrous pearls to shame; his moon-like face is framed with dark black curling locks of hair, fine as the feathers under a crow's wings. His lotus-like eyes glance lovingly upon his devotees. He wears a peacock feather in his hair. His beauty is so great that he does not need to wear ornaments on his body. In fact, instead of the ornaments' beautifying him, his beauty enhances the ornaments.

Upon seeing this person, reverence erupted in Rudra's eyes as he cupped both his hands and greeted politely,

"Pranaam! Madhusudan!"

Lord Krishna smiled gently and replied,

"For the sake of protection of Dharma you raised your weapon and fought to protect what you believe is right. Your friend fought against you for what he believed to be right. He played his role in this 'DharmaYudh' and you have to play your role in it too. Don't disgrace your friend's bravery by shedding tears for him, but instead wish him a happy journey to the heavens. So, when he gazes from heavens upon you he wouldn't be disappointed but instead elated as you treasured his last words and lead your path in life."

Lord Krishna patted his shoulders gently and nudged him forward while saying,

"Rest well! Rudra! Tomorrow you have the battle to be fought. Relax both your body and mind and prepare for the incoming meeting."

After saying Lord Krishna walked away. As Lord Krishna's figure became smaller and smaller in Rudra's vision, he smiled and mumbled, "Thank you! Madhusudan! I won't disappoint you." He stared towards the sky, his gaze piercing the heavens, "I will keep my promise to you, my friend. I will keep my promise!" He breathed deeply once and entered the camp.

Inside the camp

Rudra rested on the bed as the physician applied ointment on his open wounds and massaged his sore body with medicine paste. Rudra waved his hand and the physician and the servants retreated.

After ensuring there was no distraction, Rudra slowly closed his eyes and focused his conscious inside his body. When he had full concentration inside his body, he slowly opened his inner spiritual eyes and began to inspect the state of mind and soul of his own body. Slowly he focused his inner spiritual eyes on the red color 'Root Chakra'(Muladhara) located in the base of the spine. The root chakra pulsated with the energy once and began to harmonize.

After it was in harmony with his spirit and body, he channeled his inner energy from the root chakra and then focused it on the violet-colored 'Crown Chakra'(Sahasrara) located on the crown of his head. Red-colored energy originated from the 'Root Chakra and formed a bridge to the 'Crown Chakra'. As the balance between both the chakras was attained, a multi-colored vortex of energy was formed on top of his head. His body began to absorb this vast amount of energy from the earth and heavens.

This vast amount of energy was then channeled to the 'Root Chakra' from there it was then directed towards the green-colored 'Heart Chakra'. With such large amounts of energy, the flow of blood and energy in the body surged and the wounds begin to heal at a very rapid pace. In no time, all the wounds and gashes were fully healed leaving no mark behind and the smooth and supple skin glistened once again as if there were no injuries, to begin with.

Shortly after, Rudra slowly opened his eyes and inhaled huge amounts of air and then exhaled turbid air from his mouth. This session of meditation was over and an hour had passed by. Physical injuries could be healed soon, but the emotional and mental trauma takes a very long time. He shook his head slightly and prepared to go for the strategic meeting for the next day's battle formation.

It has been seven days since the war started, hundreds of thousands of lives are lost every day. The death count of both sides has reached a few million and it will continue to increase till the end of the war. The seven Akshauhini Sena of 'The Pandavas' has been reduced to four Akshauhini and the eleven Akshauhini Sena of 'The Kauravas' has been reduced to six Akshauhini. Both sides have lost nearly half of their armies and the situation is very tense. No side can get a clear advantage over the other side. Today the strategic meeting would be regarding this very issue.

As his thoughts were wandering here and there in the in-outs of war. He began to ponder about his life which he has lived up to this time. He had faced many hardships, slew many foes, escaped from the clutches of death many times; braved dangers many times to gain the power to stand out, and live life freely with his morals and principals. The world today knows him as 'The Maharathi- Rudra' but hardly only a few people know who he was originally, and how much he had sacrificed to arrive at this point and gained such prestige and honour.

He slowly closed his eyes and laid on his bed for a small nap before the meeting as he began to recall the past events of his life. His own story,

'The story of Rudra'

"The legend of Maharathi-Rudra"

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