Now that I finally have something to write on I can recount the strange events of the last few hours. Days? Weeks? Months even? How long has it been since I parted ways with Harad in Aruldusk? How many days did that twisted dwarf have us locked up in his lair? I haven’t a clue. And those dreams!
But we discovered they weren’t dreams. We found the bodies. Well, at least the piles of dust and equipment they left behind. Inhabiting that body—for that is the only way I can describe it—felt so real. The emotions. The sounds. The scents. The pain.
But here we all are unscathed, and with clear heads. The memories have returned! My good friend Fane, the crafty and dedicated Batalash, the Flame’s chosen one Ronen (my envy is a source of respect I tell myself), my kindred half-blood spirit Kal-Elis, and the ever resourceful, though often obnoxious, Erick the Orange (his robes stick out like a sore thumb in the forests!). Just hours ago they seemed complete strangers, more so than that fateful day we met in Aruldusk.
I am troubled about how they saw me in that compound. Throughout our travels I have sought to prove myself. I am human in nature. The orc in me is nothing more than coincidence, nothing that I could control, but still I have been ridiculed. Taunts and jeers have followed me all my life, but with my new companions, I have been greeted with acceptance. Not even under the tutelage of Harad at the Silver Flame’s orphanage, a place I cherish as home, have I been treated so—equally.
Yet I felt that half of my blood surging in this place. Never, in all my days in Wyr, in all my childhood roaming the forests, have I felt like more a beast! I was a savage. My naked body stained with blood, claws brandished, fangs dripping. I felt like my father…but never again. Never again will I succumb to that. It gives me all the more reason to hunt this bastard down. The vendetta is now personal.
I was not the only one who felt unnatural. Batalash told us he had lost his telepathy. Elrick seemed more concerned with clothing and cleanliness than escaping the tunnels. Maybe that is normal for a wizard? Fane’s heroics saved our hides on more than one occasion. Having him with us is surely the Flame’s blessing! However, his recklessness knew no bounds. In the last battle he commanded a surge forward, only for him to pull short and leave me stranded on the front line! Alas my friend, I’m sure you are as glad as I that it is over.
Or is it? We succeeded in finding the strange dwarf and his lab, but he managed to escape us by means of arcane trickeries. I can track deer. Men. Dragons even (the Flame will it I never have to again). Disappearing dwarves, however, are far beyond my capabilities. And so here we are, left with nothing.
Do we report back to Aruldusk? It seems the likely course, but I feel the church will not be pleased. We have little of what we came for—evidence. We saw and experienced much, but I find it hard anyone will believe our tale without some kind of proof. The compound was completely destroyed, and all of Alcanane’s notes buried. Thanks to Fane’s bravura, we did manage to secure the small metallic brain. Hopefully Batalash can provide us with some answers. Or perhaps he knows someone who can. Either way, we must act quickly. I fear Alcanane may be closer to his goal than Patoria supposed. The flame in my heart shudders at that grave thought.