There is beauty to be found underground. There is a deep beauty in the heart of the earth. Dwarves know this. Gnomes know this. Kobold know this.
I expected our journey to take us many places. From the tops of the mountains to the depths of the jungle I expected, but into the earth, into the heart and soul of this world? I never expected our journey to take us there. These caves are not the caves of my forebears, for which I am grateful.
We were traveling through the depth of the Yin Sloth Jungle, but we weren’t in the jungle. We were in mines within these jungles. We were in a place well known to me but new at the same time. These tunnels were made by Dwarven hands, or so it seemed to the Dwarf and me.
I mentioned the natural cavern that we had been within previously. After defeating the necromancer, the elf one, a great rumbling signified the opening of a new passageway. We took this into a deep pit. At the bottom of the pit was a truly immense tree. Worse were the fights surrounding this tree. We were victorious, but only at a loss of much or our capability to bring the fight to our enemies. We were worn out, tired, injured, and yet we pushed on for our enemies did not give us respite.
We entered the mines and began our journey further into the depths, ever following the finger of the dead god, following where it pointed.
The age of the mine was betrayed when we fell through a collapsing floor into a sub-level. It was my fault that this fall occurred, but it was fortuitous as it led us more quickly to our destination.
Our destination still eluded us, however, as we were still within these mines of the ancient dwarves. We met more Tezcats, some assorted dead walking, and a small band of orcs. This only affirmed to me that I am on the right side of this conflict if I could once again be on the opposite side to that of those races who “should” be my compatriots.
I wondered sometimes at the lack of concern that others in my group displayed for each other in times of stress. They seemed to devolve into their base natures, focusing on what glories that they personally could achieve more than the glory that the group could acquire. It is almost as if they were more concerned over who was seen as the most important over each leg of the journey than with achieving our goal of collecting the pieces of Osiris.
Far better would it have been if our members were less concerned over the appearance of their actions and more concerned with completing our journey alive.
Now that my journeys with CrIsis are complete, I feel confident in relating that we were fools to rely upon the power of the dead god so heavily. Heading into the lair of a necromancer, a being who would gain immense power should he acquire even one more, we carried no less than three pieces of that god.
What fools we were in our ignorance. Overkill died…twice
This seems to have been a common occurrence with the dwarf, no doubt stemming from his mistaken apprehension that individuals in the group considered him a coward. Individuals who carried with them a piece of the god that gave them more than human abilities called him thus.
I admit that for a short time I allowed that same avarice that clouded the judgement of my fellows to cloud my own and took up the Right Hand of Osiris.
Before this moment of wakefulness, I did, for the first time in over ten years, use my ability to conceal an area to give us a moment of respite to prepare, however poorly, for the coming battle with the necromancer.
Which was where our dwarf died the second time. The necromancer had gathered an army to fight us, an army that we systematically tore to pieces. During this time the dwarf stayed within support range of his fellows. He was not bullheaded like our tall friend who went charging in at every opportunity that presented itself. But the moment that the enemy cloaked himself in darkness he went charging in as if we were questioning his dwarfness.
He only proves his cowardice when he takes the easy route to death, not his bravery.
And death it was that met him in that darkness. Our priest called down a miraculous ability that allowed him to dispel the greater number of the abilities of the enemy, an ability which he later used to dispel the darkness which was the end of our dwarf, but for reasons only known to Indaris this was something he only did after the demise of the dwarf.
It was a true death this time. My years on the road brought me to an understanding of when someone is beyond the ability to save, and the dwarf had suffered eponymous damage.
The gods were with us and I praise Ra that was the case. The mangled body of the dwarf knit itself back together before our eyes as the priest prayed. I had never before witnessed what I would consider a miracle, but that day, in that moment, that is truly what I witnessed.
This account covers events from the 12th day of the fourth month of Asher’s 99th year through the 12th day of the fourth month of the same year.
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