Hello everyone, this is Asclepius,with a further instalment of this wonderful story from Elgarion, entitled
The Tavern Respite
Background music “Tavern Song” by Ome the Bard
Chapter 3, “The Two Companions”
After a long week of arduous travel and an amazing evening of adventure, Elgarion returned to his chambers above the common room of Bear Tavern, kindly offered to him by Balec, the absent proprietor. The note Balec had left him was thoughtful, and Elgarion made certain the basket was well utilized for the ale he and his friends had imbibed that eve. The mere notion that Balec would have the forethought to think of him, caused Elgarion to ponder and to become certain. The old sorcerer made a mental note–if Balec had his best interests in mind, this refugee from Kahli would pay in kind. Somehow, and soon, Elgarion would reward Balec for his generosity and commitment to fine service. Setttling himself, Elgarion sat at his desk, and began to write in his journal, recounting the lessons and peculiarities of the day’s happenings.
When I had returned to Bear Tavern that evening, already inside was a man with whom I had become recently familiar, Stryker Sparhawk. Stryker was engaged in dance with a charming female, whose lithe movements caused me some embarrassment Her unseemly motions were befuddling to me, and alas, (as any gentleman would) I averted my eyes and sat upon a stool at the ornamental oaken bar, instead admiring the wooden creation likely crafted by the careful hand of a fine artisan. She departed, her name I do not recall. But then Stryker and I accounted of our week’s journeys in stride, as if meeting every seven days had become the norm.
Shortly after, another arrived. Blake Blackstone, the dwarf. He strode in and quickly sat to my left. It was good to be amongst friends. We drank the fine brew of Bear Tavern, leaving coppers and gold in the basket as Balec had instructed, and told tales, most of which, I now struggle to remember.
Balec had made mention that recording the conversations of his patrons had left some… rather uncomfortable. So now I attempt to record well after our encounters and am likely to forget much of what transpired. All for the sake of propriety.
Blake Blackstone mentioned a man whom I must most definitely seek. A historian, of sorts. A rare profession, and rarer yet to find one bearing talent for that calling. I hope to make his acquaintance. Enderandrew. A most unusual name. And also one, unforgettable. Certainly he must know of the populaces still in this world which might have existed from before The Fall. He most certainly, can help this lost soul.
Again, the Doomsayers. The Outlanders. Stryker and Blake both spoke with worry. Neither had encountered a Doomsayer, but I did learn, that Outlanders… many of the very people I have met, to include Blake and Stryker, consider themselves as such. They even stated I was one. Certainly, I played along, but why do they believe this? It seems the Outlanders are common and apparently accepted. The peoples of this world are so different from before. I have much to learn. And as Stryker and Blake suggest, I must seek an elf by the name of Bowen. For he holds the key to these Doomsayers. If I were mistaken to be an Outlander by friends, would these Doomsayers make similar assumption? My explorations might become unnecessarily… challenging, if so.
As if our topics had not delved into enough gloom, I broached the subject of The Undead. Upon my first meet with these fine folk, they had expressed much concern over the Undead which plagued the wilds. Now, they made mention of a Spirit Speaker which enticed an apparition to speak. “Malice” was the word it had said. I assumed it was a place, and Stryker thought specifically, a dungeon. Catacombs are home to many of the unliving. Perhaps our next encounter, I might coax some of the brave souls in Bear Tavern to speak more of “Malice”. Imagine what histories I might uncover amidst the treasures of the entombed. With companions, perhaps I might even journey to such a place.
And, lastly. Highiron. The city belonging to an organization known as the Tantalus, if I recall the dwarf’s words correctly. On a whim to show us his home, Blake summoned such magic to transport us there. I did not know that such sorcery existed in today’s world, but this spell — I must learn it. I can’t even begin to imagine how my search for Kahli could be hastened if I possessed such power. Alas, the journey proved uneventful. Highiron is a grand city, with a unified people. I met another there, their planner, Harry. The city’s beauty was a testament to his devotion. But as quick as we had arrived, the tour was cut short by night fall, and to PaxLair I wished to return. Blake stayed and I returned with Stryker, also possessing such magics of transport. Perplexing. I am truly awed by the powers of these… Outlanders.
Before I retired, I looked across the common room. Empty. Candles waned. I had hoped to see the one called, Amber. She had made such an impression upon this old weary man, last we met. I suspect her library to reveal many answers to the riddles which toy with my perceptions. Perhaps soon, I can enlist her aid. Thus far, PaxLair has offered me sanctuary. The people of PaxLair have shown me friendship. And I suspect this individual can render much aid to my cause.
Now, in my chambers, I prepare for another night of torment. I know what the darkness will bring to my dreams. The limbo, my prison for so many years, will take me again. At least as I slumber, I will return to my people, even if only as a conjuration of my haunted mind. My place is with them, and to that end, I will not stop until I find them. And free them. I take some solace, that in some way, I will return to them tonight.