I was in a frenzy, not my typical repertoire. I was desperate to find that dwarf, desperate to free my friend from his spell. It was in this frenzy that I ignored my better judgement, ignored my higher mind and was trapped in the dark. My companions in another room, being charged by something in the shadows. I prepared myself, but the creature was strong, and my armor failed to deflect his blows. Soon I heard the growl of the fox, the ping of arrows off stone, and the crack of Rayne’s strange weapon, various cries of pain. We turned the creature back, mostly thanks to the efforts of the others, for I am useless in the dark. I felt calmer, the rush of battle draining me of my haste and reminding me that a measured approach is often the best. Someone brought light forward and I saw what my folly had wrought.
Lying in a pile of blood, torn beyond recognition, was Werven, the gnome that I had attacked. I was disconsolate. I had ruined a life, I had caused a man to be taken from the world by my lack of foresight and awareness. This would never happen again. I busied myself helping the others about the task of figuring out the puzzle, and moving Werven’s body to somewhere cleaner. As I worked a rage built inside of me, and I shaped it, used it for my own purposes. It made my mind clearer, and my purpose sharper. I would find this dwarf, kill him, and disgrace him. Knowledge should be shared, earned perhaps, but not bought with lives like this.
I found my way back to the crumbled ruins of the stone beast and snapped one of its horns, stowing my prize for a purpose, and rejoined my new comrades. We gathered ourselves and made our way down stairs, but not before being interrupted with some sort of appeasement gift. He seemed keen on curbing our fury, but from the look I could see in Daine’s eyes, and the feeling in my heart, I knew that would not be the case. I know not what the value in a simple staff and pair of daggers holds, but I would assume Tormun could tell me when he wakes.
Upon arriving on yet another identical floor, I prepared for more of the same, trying to take a quiet step, I realized that with my current configuration, I would be of little use walking quietly. However as I clinked around, I felt a presence settle over me, as if something unseen gripped my chain and plates and held them in place. It was a strange sensation, and I grew worried that something had been wrought by the object of our search, but I heard Daine from behind me assure me that it was her doing, and my failure as a sneak would be covered. We continued, alert for whatever might lie through the darkness, and found our way to a familiar door. Expecting some sort of creature behind it, we formed a plan to use those with extraordinary noise making capabilities (Rayne and Haera) and have them draw whatever thing is in there out into the open. Once visible, we would hit it would everything we had.
However, our best laid plans were laid to waste by the mage himself. Beckoning us into the chamber, we scattered throughout the room in an attempt to corner the bastard and get the answers we wanted. We parlayed for a moment (and in that definition I include Rayne blowing up a chair with her device), but soon he formed a spell and we all sprang into action. He vanished, but thanks to Koh’s sharp nose, we chased him across the room. I unfortunately missed my chance to kill him with the horn I picked up, but Daine had her revenge, and that is enough for me. I did not pass up the chance to disgrace his body, however, and stripped him of all earthly belongings. He may have had dignity in life, but I would not allow it in death, not for his actions.
It was again all for naught. He soon called us forth once more, and informed us of a chest that we had earned, but it felt more like we had sacrificed our friends for it. Loading up the spoils and leaving we went to try to revive Tormun with the ‘simple staff’ I had disregarded earlier. It had the ability to work healing magics, and while the first attempt failed, we had another chance the next day. I kept watch on Tormun through the night, ensuring that nothing ill would befall him before Daine could release him from this prison.
The morning light came, and with it, new hope, and new power. In the course of the night I asked after Rayne’s ability regarding magical items and she identified my new axe to be one possessing the power of cold. Waiting with bated breath I watched as Daine attempted to use the staff once more, and a wave of energy washed over Tormun’s body. The stone rippled and cracked and he was free! I tackled him in a bear hug, just about catching him on his sore legs. I finally got my bard back, and one of the best friends I have. These new people had proven to be driven, skilled, and deadly. Perhaps they would like to join us in our search for knowledge and power… that would have to wait however. We still had some spoils of knowledge to go over, and I wanted a drink.