Aramis Entry 10
[March 13th, 103 CY]
Slept poorly. I dreamed of my Celeine at the heart of a garden, beneath a monstrous version of the tree on the hill where she’s buried. The wind was cold, the sky blue and clear, but I couldn’t see what her hands were doing in the dark, wet soil.
She saw me and favored me with that sad, knowing smile that always melts my heart. She beckoned me to join her, but I knew that her garden was for the dead. To enter would end my life – and I still had much to do, even though my fondest wish was to be with her again. She called me a coward and worse as I walked away, and her voice still rang in my ears when I woke. I pray that it’s the foul magic at work in this place that plagues me so.
The goblins besieged us on our way back to Goblintown, as I feared they would. Overcoming them wasn’t too difficult, but we all knew the real challenge still lay ahead – the goblin chief, Durnn.
We found Durnn and his minions in a chamber with a vine-choked shaft leading deeper into the Citadel. He was in no mood for parley, as I had also feared, so we fought. Durnn had a pair of horrible plant-monsters and a mystic at his command, among others, but we still won. Durnn is dead – but not before he’d had Maelgrek, the hobgoblin whom we captured before, spiked to the wall. I helped him down and healed him while the others searched the room.
Alas, we realized that one of Durnn’s grisly decorations is all that remains of the elven ranger, Karakas. Worse still, Owen has decided to leave the Citadel and report this news to his family at once, in Ossington. His mind’s made up, so I’ve asked him to tell Madame Hucrele what’s happening down here, and to take Maelgrek with him.
This setback is the last straw. I’ve come to rely on Owen’s spirit as much as I do his prowess; I don’t know if Azal, Erky, and I can stop Belak without him. But we must. I’m sure those thorny plant-creatures must be behind the dead ram on our ranch, and the other attacks… And from what Maelgrek’s told me, the druid is spitting in nature’s eye. I must send him unto my Queen for judgment.
I know what I have to do now.
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