A Fallen Light, A New Hope

An Alchemist's Tale XLII

Well, Maybe I was to hasteful like always, Maybe we should have looked for another way… I thought we would all share the burden, I.. I yet again failed when it comes to things i don’t actually understand… And now Arseni has to deal with the consequences of my actions, instead of looking for another way I pushed them that it wouldn’t be that bad… there must have been another way, the fey elves maybe? maybe the black had something had we gone and defeated him first? who knows… What i do know is that I need to end all of this, I need to get that sword to help me control my powers, and I need to end this horrible situation that everyone I care about is living in… and once we clear everything and it all calms down, I need to step away… step away and work on myself, or I think the elves will gladly take me in as a student after i helped liberate their home… at least I can only hope they do…

In the end tho, nothing can remove the mistakes I have made… I just hope i can learn from them…

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The Lost One's Tome IV
Bargains and Promises

1st 3rd day, The Melting

I should have said no. I should have been stronger and a lot of other things. Those awful pixies were right. I am pathetic. My own timidity has damned twelve souls and possibly a thirteenth in a good man who had far more courage than I did.

I am so sorry Arseni. If I could relieve your burden I would, but there’s no undoing the past or it’s sins. Feeling sorry for myself when someone else is suffering much worse would be the most pathetic thing I’ve done yet.

Instead I make a promise. I will become stronger, and learn to face my weakness. As hesistant as I am I will not leave just yet. Not until this curse is dealt with. It will not be easy. This group seems to attract awful attention, and it’s strongest will appears to be it’s greatest fool.

But I have no other choice. I promise Arseni, I will repay this wrong, and I will protect you. I will not let your soul be the one that suffers for this.

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An Alchemist's Tales XLI

I feel like I keep repeating everything in these journals, I keep making the same points and show little to no growth… Like yesterday’s battle I felt like I was helping, and maybe I did make it easier… but at what cost? i don’t know, no 1 does. because I can’t remember. I am realising what this woman thing really does. The Duke helped me realise it, honestly a memory here or there doesn’t seem like much, but it ads up, and I am noticing what it is doing to my friends… I am to blame… and I am the only one that can stop it. she has no power over me if i just say NO. she has all the cards. and she has people that I want. but I can’t lose myself, that’s not what mother would have wanted, and it’s not fair to everyone else that is still alive and here… I keep forgetting, that i do have family that rely on me… I have 3 cousins that lost both their parents, just like I did… And Estelle has been taking care of all of us for so long. They are not longer cousins, they are brothers and sisters. they mean everything to me… and to be honest I have been the worst brother… It’s time we finish this, It’s time we end this adventure.

But first, two task must be complete. we must free the elves from the drow, we need them
on our side. and the black must die, or at least leave this area. I want my home to be at peace before i can return. and resume the life I had, learning my trade, and running the shop while grandmother acts as mayor… That is what I want. I might have to ask the elves fora favor after we clear out their city… I hope they won’t mind having a human stay with them for a while once this is all over with…

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A Blacksmith's Workings XXVIII
Hazy

We headed north to the Arena, we went in search for Sebastian and Marcella. Kara may also be in the Arena, under the Black’s control. We snuck into the Arena and went in search for the targets. We found came across some nobles who mentioned that an arena fight would happen involving an arena fighter and apprentice. We continued our search and found Kara with a necklace that was controlling her. Kara placed another necklace around Marcella’s neck. The fight was moved to the arena where we learned we had to beat Kara. We had to choose to save either Kara or Mercella, and the other would die. The fight turned south when Mireya went down and Aaron made a deal with Bagoda to help our odds. The fight went our way. We were able to overcome Kara and beat her down and save her from the grasp of the Black. As Kara fell unconscious, Marcella’s necklace tightened and took her life. I told Mireya to leave Marcella and to find Sebastian. I followed her out of the Arena with Marcella’s now lifeless body. We borrowed a carriage from the Black and headed back towards Baecrest. I learned of the deal with Bagoda. Upon reaching Baecrest we stopped by our home. We broke the bad news to Mireya’s family and the others. I went to the the Duke’s to have him dispose of the carriage.- I requested his help with Marcella, he said he could not help me.- After talking to the Duke we separated and went our own way home. Arseni and I went to the pub to drink away our problems. I awoke the next day feeling good but with a slight headache.

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The Lost One's Tome III
Parallels

A Forgotten Time…

I have failed in my promise.  I tried, I did everything I could, but it was not enough. I wanted to help them, but the next part is hastily scratched out

That girl, she was no older than I am, and to die in such a way. Was she afraid? Was she in pain? I’ve tormented myself with these questions over and over again, but none of them have come close to the guilt of asking myself if I could have done more. I had hoped to disable them, but what if one more strike could have made a difference? What if I had worn her down more before fleeing and leaving the burden to Arseni? Would Mireya’s sister, an innocent young girl, be alive?

There is no victory in this. Only the pain and suffering of a family in mourning, and failure and regret of the people who should have saved her. Only that hag knows joy from this outcome. That creature and her malice are frightening. I do not know if I have the stregnth to face down such a creature, even out of my debt to these people.

I doubt many other things as well. Roy asked me if I could handle this. If I could fight and be willing to have blood on my hands. I did not think that blood would be of an innocent when I said yes. I am not sure I was thinking at all in fact.

I know that the real answer is no. I can not do this. I am so sorry, to these people who I made a promise to I can not keep, and to the woman who wasted this power on a weak, lost little girl.

I am truly sorry, but we part with the elves. Where I can not burden people with such important destinies as them.

The previous page lays open as the owner falls into her meditation, only for the words to fade from the page. The ink lifting off in a soft black mist in the moonlight, the owner awakens suddenly confused and looks down to see her journal open on an empty page in her lap. She smiles and reaches for her pack to pull put her pen and write on the same page as before

3rd 6th day, Claw of Sunsets

I can not believe this. We won. We actually won. I am ashamed to admit I had little confidence in this ending well, but somehow we pulled through. Their friend and Mireya’s brother are safe, and all I can think about is the happiness everyone felt when the child and the girl were seen back with us. I played only a small part in that, but yet it feels like the grandest achievment in my life.

Today I feel more satisfied with these last few days than I have with most of my life. These people certainly have strange and dangerous lives, but perhaps it is worth it for these moments alone? Where you may look back and know good has been done.

I have always felt lost, even before being consumed by the techery of the wilds. I wandered through my life without purpose or direction and fought back against the ones others pushed on me simply out of spite. This time I simply did what I thought was right, and I am finally happy with the outcome of a choice I’ve made.

We leave for the elves soon, but I do not think I will stay with them like Roy suggested. There is much of this I have yet to understand still, and I am afraid, but I think in the end I will be alright. I think all of us shall.

Perhaps these people and this place are where I can find myself.

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Trappers Tales XLI
2nd 7th day, Ches - Successes and Failures

2nd 7th day, Ches

It’s unexpected. Things actually worked out.

Last time things looked like they were going well, we lost Rowan. It was a little touch and go, but we got Kara back without anyone getting severely hurt this time. I’m amazed I’m actually able to sit her watching her as I write this.

We’d had information that she was being held at the arena, so we made our way there to try and free her. With a small distraction, we were able to sneak in the service entry and look around without trouble.

We didn’t find Kara in the barracks where we’d hoped, but instead found her ready and waiting on the sands. She was mind controlled (which is much better than the alternative, and makes much more sense) by a necklace attached to her. It appeared people, or at least Bagoda, had advance warning we were coming, and had set up a little quandary for us. We either had to kill Kara, or she’d kill us. An added sting, Bagoda seemed to aim the barb at me personally, saying that I’d have to kill the one that loved me. A little odd, usually she’d needle Aaron.

However, we must have found a loophole, because we knocked her out instead of killing her outright, and the necklace broke off, leaving her merely unconscious. Bagoda disappeared, those watching disappeared, and we were just left with an unconscious Kara. We loaded her up on a cart, and brought her back to Baecrest.

I hope she wakes up soon. It’s been so long since we’ve spoken, and even longer for her, I guess.

I’m just glad things have worked out, though.

on the paper under the writing, a faint indent can be seen, as though someone wrote on pages above and the pressure left marks on those below

I’m so sorry, Mireya. I know you’ll probably never read my journal, or if you do I’ll already be dead so anything I write here will be meaningless, but please know that I didn’t mean to kill her.

I tried my best. I really did. It probably looked like I was targeting Marcella, but I wasn’t. I really was trying to knock them out at the same time. I thought with everyone else attacking Kara that if anything, it would be her that was decapitated. I don’t know why it wasn’t like that, but I’m so sorry.

I even tried to get revenge on Bagoda, but I wasn’t fast enough. I’m not strong enough. Not good enough.

I’m just, so, so sorry. I never meant to kill your sister. I did everything I could.

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A Blacksmith's Workings XXVII
Goodbye

I didn’t get to say goodbye. Not properly. Aaron made sure of that.

We navigated through the castle to find the Duke. He agreed to return assuming we could get Bagoda on board. She proved difficult to deal with. She tried to kill us, which was to be expected. I talked to her first. She proved unwilling to work with me as usual. She knows my distaste for her and I know her power. No deal was struck, but I learned of another deal. A deal with Aaron. He went behind my back and tried to bring Rowan back. He forced Mireya into a position to swallow her pride to bring us all home.

His deal to bring back Rowan failed. The Rowan I know and love is gone. What remains is a blank slate. A newborn child who I get to watch grow up as I grow old. She will live a good life but one without me.

We found a fey elf while traveling home. She seemed to wander into this plane due to Bagoda’s meddling taking us home. She seemed lost and confused when she returned to consciousness. And upon talking to the Duke about her fate she holds more to her past then she is letting on. She offered to help us in our mission. Which now that the deal makers are back, seems to be returning to the arena to rescue Mireya’s family.

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Trappers Tales XL
Unknown Date - Pyrrhic Victory

Well, we’ve been successful.
Sort of.
It doesn’t feel like it.

We’ve gotten the deal makers back into the world, and I kind of feel like The Black was a better option. Bagoda is already being awful, not that I really expected much else.
Firstly, she threatened to take Aaron and Mireya with her from this land of the dead when she left, and leave Roy and myself behind unless Mireya offered her an apology. I don’t know how she choked it out.

Then, as per some deal she’d apparently made with Aaron (He wasted no time getting back to basics with her), she brought Rowan back as well. Alive, unharmed. Apparently unborn. Well, new born. We emerged into some cave, and with us was Randall Tallstag, and “Donnagoda,” who was giving birth to a young red-haired girl, who Randall named Rowan. Always a bloody loophole.

We left, and went to Baecrest. With Baemore still under the control of The Black, we figured it best to check in on the Duke, Estelle and others.
He was happily home, but let us know that by being back he’d re-established some of his control, what was left to do was up to us, and we’d have to deal with The Black the old fashioned way.

Thus, we’re off to find the Black, and resort to violence. It’s what we do well, I guess.

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The Lost One's Tome II
Without Choice

3rd 2nd day, Claw of Storms

I am so confused.  This place, the mortal plane they call it in their tongue, holds no familarity for me.  It is hard to describe; but everything seems dimmer?  As if all of the color and light in the world were drained to half of their normal glory. I do not like it.

I am alone with only four strangers to guide me. They seem kind enough so far and two of them are like me, but I know nothing of them besides that and their names. Perhaps volunteering to follow them into danger was not wise, but Mireya was kind to me and healed me. I felt I needed to do something to repay that. I know even less of their situation than I do of them aside from what they’ve told me. How accurate is even that much though? Still I agreed to help, despite having never fought a single battle in my life, out of gratitude and to prove they need not abandon me somewhere later on. I hate this helpessness and dependence. There’s not even the option of seeking a way home to escape it. Not as long as the wolf hunts me. The duke has made that clear.

I do not want to die, but I do not wish to live stuck as an outsider in a foreign world either. Few have ever cared about what I want out of life though, I suppose it should be no surprise fate is not any different.

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Trappers Tales XXXIX
Timeless - Dead Heads

Well, recently I wrote that I needed to find ways to stop dying.
I am not off to a good start.

The difference is, this time it wasn’t quite as unexpected as usual. We were told we needed to make a potion in the alchemists lab, as previously mentioned, and we’d have a chance to go to another dimension to free the dealmakers, as awful as that concept is, but it was apparently the best way to go.

Personally, I’m not sure that the Black is bad enough to release Bagoda even if we didn’t have to die for it, but nevermind.

When we arrived on the other side we weren’t alone. Rowan was there, but seemingly without her memories. We took her with us, as we looked for our way forward. Hopefully we can help her, if not retrieve her.

We made our way down the river along a boat, with a minor detour to obtain tribute for access and a delay as we encountered the man who previously warned us of an ambush, and we’d ignored. Apparently we’d soon encounter two people, one a friend, the other a foe. Thus, when we came to a village, we were on guard. It looked mostly empty, except for a child who wanted friends, as his had all gone missing.

We dropped our guard.

It turned out his friends he wanted us to play with are pumpkin headed horrors and he was a fire demon. We dispatched them, but it was frustrating. We need to start listening to him, apparently.
Back tracking to the town, we discovered a man drinking inside the pub. He explained he was a shaman who was on some kind of spiritual journey, and had gotten stuck here. Apparently this village was where people who made deals with the deal makers serve penance, but with the fire demon around it had become an empty horror.
He also knew where the deal makers reside, so we’re soon off to catch up with them.

This wild ride seemingly has no end, and I don’t especially enjoy it.

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