After sending away Raven & El, to return the book, I got my cousin loaded on his horse, and scampered off to the west. Our horses were not pleased to be traveling without light, but I took care to get us on our way. The riders into the ruined settlement would find the riches that we left behind, but the prize we came here for was in our care.
The trip home was quite different than the trip out. While the composition was the same, an innocent, naive son of the chief and his cousin, who was sent to keep him out of trouble, the feeling of awe and bewilderment, gone. My benefactor was right, it would be better away. But now I go back, to deliver my cousin home.
My benefactor has not communicated with me since his death. I am not sure, if she is upset for the loss, or just has somewhat important matters to deal with, but the lack of communication is disturbing. My powers seem to be still with me though, so it hasn’t become a dire situation as of yet. I have been able to handle the creatures willing to take on a pair of horse and riders, without any real trouble.
I can finally see the outskirts of our encampments, I am home. The nights have not been restful, but knowing where I am helps, as I sleep outside, and will make my way into the village in the morning. This was always a safe spot, that the outer guards would let travelers sleep in, and the local creatures would leave alone. Was.
I was awakened to find my camp beseeched by several guards who brought me back to a state of unconsciousness.
Home was not how I remembered it. There are many tieflings here that I do not recall. It’s not that I knew everyone, but these brutes I would remember. I will remember. They know enough to have me in chains, my fingers balled up so I can’t make signs with them, and I’m heavily gagged. Someone knows enough about me to be cautious.
I’m left trussed up like this for a full day, I don’t sleep that night, so much as I pass into unconsciousness. That is a habit I would like to get out of.
Cold water is splashed on top of me, I look in the direction of where it came from. It is my Uncle. He questions my ability to keep his son alive, and my worth to anyone. He says he will love to see my head on a pike. But I know that won’t happen, I can tell it in his voice, he isn’t speaking with the air of authority he used to. He spits on me, and disappears from my limited sight. I pass out again.
When I wake again, I am still in this crude cell, but unencumbered by the restraints I had previously. I stretch, savoring that feeling. As I stretch, it is the first time in days I think back to Port Doom, to Raven and to what I should be there. As I start to stand, In my head, a familiar, commanding voice instructs. “LEAVE”. I push open the cell door, and see my stuff sitting on a table. I don the equipment, and exit the small building. I am pleasantly shocked, to see my Uncle’s head on a pike just outside of the crude jail. The area has a few other tieflings strewn about the ground, but no one is moving outside. I look over to where my family lived. The horses my cousin and I rode in on are awaiting me, ready for the journey. As I climb onto my horse, I see one footprint, one that doesn’t belong. It is good to hear the voice again. I leave, with my head held high, I know I can smell the fear, and I know I won’t be back unless instructed to.
Some time after on the trip home, I realize I acquired two items, that both belonged to my cousin. The first is his holy symbol. I don’t understand the significance of it, yet. The other item is a tad bit more personal, yet the use of it is more apparent. These are clues to questions I will need to attempt to answer when I return to the libraries of Port Doom. My trip back to the city went peacefully. The only creatures I encountered seemed drawn to my camp, and they were tasty. The voice has returned to her normal, comforting presence.
As I approach the gate, I think I will drop the horses and equipment off first, and then head to the foreign quarter, Raven is not ready for me in this state.