The door slowly opens, with each tiny creak sounding like a cacophony to the elf who was trying to quietly enter his room after checking on the shifter Syral. He did not want to wake Shira who had crawled into his vacated space on the bed. He marveled for a minute at how a simple sheet could so perfectly outline the curves of her body. He bent over, brushed the hair from her face and kissed her on the cheek before proceeding over to his desk. He begins to write…
I have been thinking about when I would next have the opportunity to put my thoughts to paper again, and it seems the Fate Weaver has presented me with the chance. However, I would have preferred not to be up so early, especially not after our ordeal with a purple worm and an army of orcs. I was woken up be an ear piercing scream (for me at least) coming from Syral’s room. I tried to wake up Shira, but she is not a morning person, and besides, she was far too comfortable wrapped around me. With a sigh, I extricated myself from her arms, got dressed, grabbed my healing kit, and went to her room to see what was wrong. Apparently she had a night terror with some gruesome side effects. She had awoken to find her fingers mangled, and then (why she did not wait on me, a healer, I do not know) proceeded to push her finger into place on her own. She described the dream to be, but even now I cannot make sense of it. In her dream we were all killed by an unseen archer, and Tex figured prominently in these events, though I cannot remember how. Sadly, I could not worry too much about her dream. She was in hysterics and I had to calm her down and make sure that no permanent damage had come to her hand. I managed to get her to a measure of serenity (I use the term loosely), and I set the bones in her hand with a splint so that they might heal properly. Hopefully, my ministrations will be effective. This is the second nightmare she has had that has resulted in bizarre consequences. I wish I knew what they meant, but, sadly, this seems out of my element. I am not as skilled a spirit talker as Myinn or…Karal. Thankfully, due to recent events, we have earned ourselves a bit of a respite as the army surrounding the city seems to be in disarray. However, I am convinced that this trial is over. I suppose I should try to explain.
My companions and I were informed, by the ‘ever-wise’ General Stone, that the magical defenses protecting the city might be weakening and that the enemy was going to use a purple worm to breech the physical ones. The general also told us that there was a way to halt the worm. There is an ancient barrier that could repel invaders of this magnitude, but that they had not needed this shield for a long time, so of course, the barrier was inactive. Naturally, the Shadow Hunters were nominated to exit the city, get past an entire army, enter the forest and restore the outer protections, a task that would be suicide for anyone…except for us. I cannot help but take pride in what we accomplished. We managed to evade detection and not alert the army during our trek to the forest, though we were almost found out because Miria and Syral, sadly, do not know when (or how) to stop bickering. We had to duck into a house to evade some orcs who were coming up on our position, and they kept chatting until Shira and I could get them to be quiet long enough for us to be out of danger. Thankfully, the guards were not alerted and we were able to make it to the forest. What awaited us there was unusual and ghastly.
We came across an eccentric dwarf who had sequestered himself in a tree house so that he could guard over a grove where the key to the barrier was. After a good deal of convincing he agreed to help us and led us to a stone plinth in the middle of a grove. As I got close to it, I felt a sudden dark energy around me, and when I looked to my companions it was as if they were frozen in time. A ghastly spirit appeared to me and called to me. I could not advance for the mere sight of this apparition made me uneasy. I find it difficult to describe in words what it looked like, but it looked withered with agony and age, and the dark energy that emanated from it was…terrifying. A spirit should not be like this, especially since I sensed that it was a tree spirit and the forest around it was alive and thriving. What it said next unnerved me most. It said many things about how it was lured and trapped, and how its energy was used to power the special barrier, but I found myself having trouble believing it. There is one desire from the spirit that I am sure of…it wants to die. It begged me for death, which seemed so unnatural to me, but as the spirit was in pain, I had no choice but to give it the release it needed. A follower of the spirit way could not do otherwise. Before I could convey what had happened, I noticed something moving in the undergrowth. A party of orcs leaped from the trees and ambushed us. Thankfully, we were able to fight them off without exhausting ourselves. I am amazed at how far we have come together. We fight as a unit now, a pack, and that is a great comfort to me. After the fight, I was able to tell everyone about the tortured spirit. Even as I was telling them, I could feel that dark force nagging at me, and hopefully, I was able to master my expression. I did not want everyone to know what that spirit made me feel. I managed to convince everyone that we should release the spirit, well, everyone except the dwarf. To make matters worse, the runes on the plinth were in dwarven, and so Miria had to be enlisted to help me. Things from then on did not go on as planned. I told Miria what to look for, and I performed the ritual according to the information she gave me, but as I completed it, the effect was not the spirits release, at least not that I could sense, but rather the summoning of the purple worm to the plinth. Apparently, what I had told Miria did not register as she had searched for the glyphs that would bring the worm to her for an epic battle. Miria amazes me in so many ways, and not all of them positive. We learned that we had roughly an hour, or less, to prepare for its arrival. Though, I think we greatly underestimated the beasts’ speed as the ground began to rumble beneath our feet. Then, in a burst of dirt and rock, the worm shot up through the ground, and before anyone could say a word, the creature lunged forward and devoured Miria! My friends and I could scarcely believe it, but we wasted no time in throwing everything we could muster at the foul thing. While we were fighting the beast, I noticed a figure emerge from the trees, elevn in appearance with skin the colour of obsidian…a drow! There was something familiar about her, but I did not have time to ponder the issue as I saw Shira get eaten. I could feel my heart in my throat, and I attacked the beast bite, blast, fang I could muster, but then I saw a plume of vapour emerge from the worm’s mouth and then materialize into my beloved gnome. I breathed a quick sigh of relief before our new drow friend was devoured, but she also managed to escape in a similar fashion by using some sort of teleporting magic. I noticed more orcs gathering at the edges of the battlefield, but they did not approach. They merely waited while we continued to fight with the worm. After a while it looked as if we might defeat the beast (I admit, I did have my doubts), but before we press our advantage, it plunged itself into the ground and proceeded unerringly towards Outlook. We barely had a second to breathe before rushed forward, but instead of attacking us, they jumped into the fresh hole and followed the overgrown earthworm towards the city. The drow came straight to me and advised me not to go into the hole and follow; however, before I could consider her advice, Syral jumped in and ran after them. It took me a second but I realised what was happening and I urged the rest of us to follow her. The drow acquiesced, amazingly, and she started calling me “B” (which was my second big clue that it was Tex) as she followed my lead. We gave chase (for which I am not properly built) and eventually we arrived in Outlook with a host of orcs and who knows what else at our backs. Just before I exited the tunnel I summoned a wall of brambles and thorns that would hopefully keep them at bay while my companions and I dealt with the worm. We chased the creature through the streets, but I noticed that it was not moving randomly. It was following a dwarf with an odd contraption strapped to his back. The worm was being lured from within the city!! I believe that it must be that accursed “There shall be a new dawn!” group. I did not have much time to utter a curse I had to focus on killing that beast. Thankfully, the creature had grown tired of trying to digest the armoured titan that is Miria and spit her out. I called on the spirits to protect her and indeed all of us as we strove to restore balance to this city. The worm stopped in front of a house (I am not sure why), and then we continued to pummel it with whatever we could while the drow, whom I assumed must be Tex, went to seal the hole. Miria was relentless, even after being eaten and flung over a fruit cart, she did not shy away from charging the beast again and again. I cursed once again as I saw Miria become devoured again. Thankfully, her stint in its belly was shorter this time as soon enough, I saw the glint of steel emerge from the beasts’ gut, after which Miria was soon to follow. We very nearly had victory.
While we were dealing the final blows against the worm, Shira had chased down the dwarf with the strange contraption, killed him, and then had gone a bit loopy from the purple smoke. She rejoined us, and we mopped up and got rid of the few remaining orcs that got through my wall. We had once again saved the city from certain destruction, and the people cheered us when we eventually returned to the battle chamber, but the machine and that otherworldly substance still trouble me. That purple smoke was not of this plane, and I can only assume that the subversives within the city were in league with the army from without. So many many dangers, and I fear that we will never be rid of them. In fact, this motley crew seems to attract disaster, much like that strange purple smoke. However, for now we have earned our triumph and we deserve rest, but I fear that we will not be able to rest for very long. I suppose I only need enough time to lie down and get a little sleep…waiting for a very sneaky gnome to crawl in with me later.
Sucaeva takes a minute to flex his fingers and relax in the chair for a minute to consider what he had written. A sleepy moan and sigh came from behind him, but as he turned around he merely saw Shira readjusting herself in the bed. He thought about going back to the bed, but he wasn’t quite ready yet. “I am sure my leftover warmth will last her a little longer. I should probably try to finish this entry before I get interrupted again,” he wondered aloud to himself. Sucaeva then laughed a little bit as he remembered the last ‘interruption’ he experienced. “Hmmm…I suppose some interruptions would be okay, ha ha.” He thinks about what to write next and then puts pen to paper again…