Thursday, June 20, 2019

136 - “A Damp and Heavy Quiet” - Eddiwarth - A Tale of Heroes

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A plump, brown haired barmaid with a dark green dress and a dull, off-white apron set two thin cups full of hot, steaming ale on the pub’s table. Eddiwarth smiled at her and dropped a small stack of copper pieces next to them. She took them, smiled, and left. Eddiwarth gently pushed one of the cups along the table until it was in front of Thissraelle. 

She sat, silent, her side to the table, her hands in her lap, and her foot up and resting on another chair. Her fine, white hair was wet and stringy, clinging to her cheeks. She blinked drops of water out of her eyes, but otherwise started at the floor, frowning, unmoving. Her cloak and clothes were drenched and dirty, but she didn’t seem to care. Eddiwarth looked at her face, sensing a deep sadness and frustration. Her chin started twitching. Is she shivering? Or crying? Or both?

He stepped up behind her and unlatched her cloak, pulling it off her shoulders and draping it over the back of her chair. Then he put his own cloak, which was a bit drier and heavier, over her shoulders and tried to wrap her in it. She didn’t speak, but she did reach up and tug it tighter around her.

I guess that’s a start.

He sat back down, across the table from her, and took a swig of his ale. It felt good, warming him up from the inside. He gestured to hers and said, “Have a sip!” She looked up at him, not sure of what he had said then looked at the steaming drink. Finally, she looked back down at her hands.

There were so many things he wanted to say to her. I think about you constantly. I think you’re the most incredible and beautiful girl I’ve ever seen. You’re ten times the wizard that I will ever be.

Unfortunately, all of that sounded so... so pointless. I hate to see you so sad. I’d move mountains to make you smile again. That thought made him smile inside. He could barely use his magic to light tinder for a campfire, much less move a whole mountain.

I’m sorry. That was what he really wanted to say. I won’t betray you. I’m not going to take you back home. It was true that when they’d first “met”, first fought on Granthurg’s barge, he’d been tasked with capturing her so as to return her to her father. But he’d ended up being the one captured. The next time he saw her, they were fighting to save children from slavers. He had felt so confused and useless in the fight. She had been amazing then, so skilled, fighting and healing. Yet it was the time with her at the monastery, after the rescue, that he had most enjoyed. Time spent relaxing and practicing magic with her, Granthurg, and Karendle...


He’d forgotten to check in with Granthurg. He glanced over at Thissraelle again. She was still quiet, ignoring him and her drink.

He sighed. I’m still not so good with the mental powers. It was a lot easier to contact Thissraelle earlier that night. She’d already had the connection, and she was close, only a street or two away. He didn’t know where Granthurg was. He could be anywhere in the city! 

Eddiwarth leaned up on the table, rested his forehead in his hands, and tried to concentrate. Granthurg had said he would meet with them in CentreTown, but Eddiwarth had no idea when or where.

He felt his will swelling inside him and his awareness drift out of the pub and into the street. He could see as it moved, in spite of the blurring of the rain, and the slightly bluish tint that came whenever he used mental powers. He began moving his point of view back and forth, sweeping from building to building in the dark rain. There weren’t very many people out, and even the illuminations of the oculi in the streets didn’t help him see much. Occasional flashes of lightning were too quick to help. As his point of view got farther down the street, he felt the strength of his will waning. His vision passed the walled in compound of the Wizard’s Guild, then further along, the Great Cathedral of The Church of Three Lights.

Hold it. What was that? He felt something from inside the cathedral, something familiar. Maybe it’s Granthurg. No, not the giant--Could that be her? Yes! What is she doing here?

He pushed his awareness inside, past the porch, through the doors, into the brightly lit nave. The cathedral was beautiful and full of color and brightness. About a third of the way in to the choir, he saw Karendle’s familiar red hair as she slumped back, resting in a pew. Her eyes were taking in the vastness of the vaults above her and the lightning through the skylights. She was almost smiling. This was the closest thing to reverence he’d ever seen on her face.

Then, the visual faded away and his mind snapped back to the dim and smoky pub. He raised his head to see Thissraelle looking at him. He smiled. “I found her!”

Thissraelle was surprised. “Who?”

“Karendle! I found her!” He jumped to his feet. “She’s in the cathedral down the street!”

“The cathedral? What is she doing there?”

“I don’t know, but I saw her!” He moved around the table to her. “Let’s go!”


This continues the story of the heroes in Wynne, in Twynne Rivers, in the world of The Hero's Tale, Family Friendly RPGs. Here's more info on The Hero's Tale, and family friendly RPGing. If you like this story, support us at our Patreon!
Thank you: Chet Cox, Genevieve Springer!

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