Chapter 2: 1 2 3 3a 4 5 6 Back to Index

Year 120: Kythorn 8 Evening.

The day is ending, and so perhaps is my time with the coterie. I don't know if I can carry on with this. It was all fun and excitement when we set out, I mean who doesn't want to see the world, find exciting new treasures and be a hero? Today brought the message home, adventuring is serious business, death is a very real possibility, and I don't think I'm prepared to face that.

I get ahead of myself though. Where were we up to last time I wrote? Oh yes, the mine. We were having a breather before heading in. While we were resting, Vincent went to fetch old Nori, who gave us a detailed layout of the mine and its contents. The only thing we had to worry about was a small bottomless pit within the first room, apparently. All set, we headed in, only to be confronted by... nine goblins, and a much bigger pit than we expected.

The fight went pretty well, I mean, I lit up a torch so Ayeena and Vincent could see the goblins, Argent and Terato provided covering fire, and Marigold came up with the astounding idea of just tripping the goblins into the pit rather than fighting them all. Everyone caught on pretty quick, so we all followed suit, and suddenly there were three goblins instead of nine. Argent had already figured out that the pit was magical, a hole to... somewhere else, and anything falling into it would be destroyed in short order.

Unfortunately, we- no, I made a miscalculation, and while I managed to take out one of the goblins myself, I left myself open, and one of them pushed me over the edge right after my target. There was a peculiar sensation, and the magic of the pit grabbed onto me, pulling me towards the center. Tiny invisible blades started cutting at me, tearring at my face and hair, ripping me to pieces. The pain was... I can't write about it.

I must have blacked out at that point. I really don't remember what happened next. Terato told me I'd managed to catch onto the edge and pull myself to safety. I think he's too shy to admit saving me. The next thing I remember is coming to, as Vincent and Marigold forced the last of the goblins to surrender.

The bottomless hole had ripped the ribbon out of my hair, which was now all over the place. I'll miss that ribbon, my father gave it to me shortly before he passed on. Marigold replaced it with the headband from the goblin they'd captured. I'd thought she'd just meant it as a nice sentiment until discovering the it was magical. I'll wear it as a reminder of how fragile I am, a warning not to put put myself in mortal danger. Again.

Vincent woke the goblin up, and asked him what he was doing here. The thing just gibbered back at him. I'd have felt sorry for it, but we'd managed to capture the one who threw me into the pit, so I joined in the shouting... and this just made him babble all the more incomprehensibly. Until he said "darkness" in... was that... elven?

None of the others picked up on it, so I asked again "what was that?" in elven this time, and the goblin suddenly... changed. He prostrated himself on the floor and apologised - apparently he hadn't seen who I was. Why would that matter? I thought, and started asking more questions. He revealed that he was an advanced scout for what he called "the people", who he had a great reverence for. I also managed to figure out that these people were elven, that their goblin troops were extremely well trained, and that the goblins held "the people" with some reverence. I then tried a few other languages, to see if I could talk to the party without our captive understanding me. He didn't seem to follow common, thank the gods, but use of more magical languages terrified him further.

Eventually I managed to convince the goblin that I was in fact a senior member of his organisation, and that he should bring me and my... um... "guards" to see his supervisor. Vincent had already escorted the dwarves to safety, so, anxious to question the person organising raids into our village, we followed our captive further into the mine. Several ramps downwards and through a small tunnel out of what Nori called "shaft three" and we emerged on a high ledge above an antechamber, and there he was.

We really learnt very little from him, other than that he held us and our village in incredibly low regard, that there was another race more "superior" than him in his "civilisation", (probably through the tunnel behind him). Oh, and everyone worshipped Lolth. I'm shuddering as I write this, Lolth isn't someone you want to be dealing with. He didn't offer his name, he didn't apologise for attacking our village, and he said some really quite hurtful things about me specifically. Then he barked a few orders to his army of goblins, drew a wand and attacked.

Recovering from the pit earlier had taken nearly everything out of me, so I was doubly dismayed when he ordered everyone under his command to focus their attacks on me. I managed to get one explosion out into his goblins before once again I blacked out. This time it was a javelin to the shoulder, which I first noticed as Vincent wrenched it out of me, waking me up. Having no idea where anyone was anymore, I rolled off the ledge to get to safety, and found myself instantly face to face with... the elf. I hit him in the face with my hammer, and suddenly everyone was backing me up. He responded by pulling some kind of magical device from within his armour, cackling as he threw it into my face. Too tired to even move any more, I just watched as it arced towards me in slow motion, and then Marigold was there to save me. In one fluid movement she snatched the device out of the air, and threw it past the elf into the rest of the goblins, where it promptly exploded.

The room started to shake in a worrying fashion, and then the roof began to colapse in. I just about managed to flail about wildly with my hammer, then Ayeena and Marigold took the opening I made to knock the elf out. Scooping his limp form, I turned and ran. We divided up his gear in the first chamber, so he wouldn't be armed if he came to, Marigold gave me his magical armour. As she handed it to me, it shrunk down to my size, and now it looks completely different than it did on him. With that done, we headed back to town to find somewhere where we could question him properly.

I write this as we sit waiting for the elf to come around, the bottom of the mine is caved in, so no-one will be following us immediately, but we have a lot of questions for him. After we find out from him how much danger our village is in, I'll decide what I'll do next. I don't think I could take another day like this, but at the same time... I'm the only person in the village who can speak any elvish. I have a feeling I'll be needed again. When the time comes, I'll put on a brave face, and smile for the world. If I can do that for the others, I might be able to struggle through.

Anyway, Until next time! I hope there'll be happier news to report.