A Dagger in the Dark.
Boom… Boom… Boom…. Thunderous echoes roar forth through the black shadows of this dark hall. Boom… Boom. Boom… Deep, slow, rhythmic blasts of despair and anger vibrate through the darkness surrounding my helpless soul. I am terrified. Me, Dadak. I have not felt fear like this since that time long, long ago….
“Tell them they must send another”, she pleaded. “Tell them. I can not bear it.”
“I must go, dearest. They have made their decision, and you know, they will not change it. It is done,” was his graven answer.
My mother started a slow, deep, and sorrowful weeping. It came from deep within. I had never seen this before and it terrified me. Until now I had never known fear.
“Where must you go, father?” I asked.
They both had a start. I saw his shadow stiffen in the flickering firelight. He paused for a long moment and beckoned me to join him. My proud mother feebly attempted to stop her weeping for my sake, to no avail.
“Son,” he said, “I am tasked with an errand.” The muscles in his huge arms rippled as he reached down to me and brushed my hair. “Grave tidings come from Xendrik my son, and the Council has ordered me to investigate.”
“But why father?” I asked, “Why you?”
He paused again. His enormous brows furrowed in concentration and thought. Never before had I seen the concern on his face. I suddenly understood I would never see him again and slowly started to cry.
He slowly began to explain and I only half listened, “Our family carries an ancient and secret burden son; one which some day I hope will pass to you. I can not explain it to you, you are too young. But know that I would not leave you here… I will not leave you alone and without strong reasons. Know and be proud that your father is strongest of our order in this part of Khorvaire, and that he must go.”
A dark shadow began creeping across my soul.
Boom… Booommmm… Booommmmmm…… Again the black shock waves of thunderous agony wash across me. I can not move my limbs and can only watch what is happening here. Snake like creatures sway to the rhythms of the sounds echoing through the halls. There is an altar. And there is a priest standing upon the dais surrounding it. He is holding a dagger above a bound helpless creature tied to the altar. The dagger is blackest black. It drips venom. It is evil and it is alive. It knows I am here and it hates me. But it wants me here. It wants to torture and torment me. I am helpless in the darkness and can not move. It is then I see the creature bound to the altar more clearly. It is a powerful orc. He is deeply wounded and too weak to resist. I see him, and then I realize he sees me as well.
He stooped down low and patted my head, my father did. He smiled a broad smile and showed his glorious tusks to me again. I smiled too, a little. My mother stood behind me, her weeping was done, and placed her hands upon my shoulders. This was farewell. I would never see my father again.
“Son”, he began, “I give to you this token, given to me by my father, for safe keeping. Guard it well, as it has powers you will unlock when the time is right. You are young, but when you are come of age, you must come for me. I will know when you are near, the birds, the animals, and the trees themselves will speak of you to me. I will be waiting for you.”
Booom…. Boooom….. Booooommm….. The hideous snakes continued their malevolent swaying. Ever faster and faster the blasts continued. The priest, dancing and swaying as well, menacingly waves the dagger above my father’s breast. The despair and blackness consumes this place. My father’s broken body lays there immobile, struggle is useless against such evil. I call to him, I reach for him, but I am too terrified to move. Just as I can no longer endure the pain, the priests plunges the dagger into my father’s breast. His body lurches. He breaks his bonds. I cry out in fear. I know he can not perform such a feat, he was too weak. He quickly stands tall and strong. He quickly flexes his new dark power. He then looks at me with his blackest of eyes and hisses “Come, my son. I am still waiting for you.”
“Arrrggggghhhhhh” I scream out into the quiet night. I gasp for air and flail my arms wildly. Kreshton stands above me, his hair wild with his sword in hand. He is looking for trouble but finds none. Pol looks deadly with his fiercely glowing blade. He has sprung into combat but finds no assailants. Something is amiss and he is waiting for it to reveal itself. Joffa looks down at me from a tree above, his tail twitching expectantly. There is a sly smile on his face and he is ready as well. Even Kailia is awry, growling lowly and looking for trouble. I relax and slowly tell the dream-story.
Pol is very deeply troubled, and he is quiet.