Kingmaker

Leilania's Journal #9

Moon Beyond Stone

I can not see the moon here, the heavens are beyond my sight. For now I must trust myself and my friends to find the right path.

We have spent most of the day underground exploring Vordekai’s tomb. Deep beneath the earth, I find myself looking to the ceiling, seeking the distant pull of my goddess beyond the stone. I know she is still there, I can still feel her, but her face is hidden and her influence on me wanes. I imagine there are caverns deep within the earth where the moon is even further distant. I hope not to see such a place.

Beyond the stairs at the head of the Valley of the Dead we took to exploring the northern edge of the Tors. The land is gray here, not absent of life but drained of it, as if some curse has pulled the vitality from the trees and grasses. We have seen few birds or animals as we have climbed, and those we have seen are skittish and malnourished. It is clear that dark things walk here. As of yet they have not found us.

It seems though that we have found Vordekai’s tomb. Using clues from Varnhold, we have matched the tomb’s location to a place of falling water and jagged rock. The structure might be called an island, but it is clear from within that it is the remains of an ancient fortress, one that has decayed with time into an ugly pillar cased in brown moss and strangling black vines. We managed to find entry and began our decent, through long-forgotten antechambers now inhabited by undead brutes. My friends and I have bested several cyclopes at this point and avoided the perils of their traps. Yet we do not know how deep this path goes or what horrors may lie at its end. We must marshal all of our courage to continue downward.

I am more thankful than ever to have Nibbs with me. Nibbs does not fear these monsters, and reacts with fury to see me or my allies in danger. He has stood in front of many a blow meant for me, and thanks to Gideon and my own magics, has managed to escape without serious harm. When we find our way back to the surface, I will have to find time to escape with Nibbs for a while. I think we both deserve some time away from danger and responsibility. A short holiday into the wilds will do us both good.

With luck, by tomorrow night I will see the moon again. When I do, I will sing a thankful prayer. This journey has reminded me how dark shadows can become. I will look to the moon’s light to push their stain away.

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