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Library: The Dream... a bedtime tale.

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Author: tixe
Date:Nov 27 2006

My tongue is dry, my canteen empty. It has been weeks that I have wandered
this desert looking for him. All I know now comes as a promise on the wind,
the whisper of his name. For me this journey began long ago, so long that I
cant remember a time when this was not my quest.

It started harmlessly enough over a drink around the fire at the Inn of the
Four Winds. Groups of adventurers had gathered around to celebrate their
victories for the day and would on occasion mourn the loss of a fallen
comrade. Notches on Kerbholzs were compared

I was sitting in a high-backed chair speaking with a mysterious man who was
warming himself by the fire. He drew on a pipe of some aromatic herb which
left smoke circling his head and made it hard to see his face. His words were
short, and often times no more than a murmur. 

We began talking of lands to the west, and a journey he had just made back
from an desert island. As he spoke the pipe tapped his lips as if to signal he
was thinking. "It was there I found this herb I smoke...*tap, tap,
tap*...though now I can't remember the name of it, nor the place from whence
it came". His eyes closed and the room started to darken, the fire lit his
face and for a moment I could have sworn I recognized him.
"It was the witch who sent me there, she promised me gold and treasure were I
to bring her back any word I could". He paused to take a drink off his mug,
and pull of his pipe. What came next was said in a whisper, but instantly the
entire room grew silent. "Eidilon", his throat rasped as he forced out the
word. 
The room began to spin, and I grabbed at my chair. Thinking I'd had too much
to drink, I pushed myself back deeper into the seat and nodded at the figure
speaking to me. He went on, 
"She came to me in a dream, the witch, her beauty was beyond any I'd seen." 
"Her voice was soft as she began to tell me of how she had been imprisoned by
'him', and pleaded with me to come for her"
"But I would fail, and she would continue to haunt my dreams"

Puffing on his pipe, he began to blow rings of smoke. 
*tap, tap, tap*
"Even now, her voice is with me...chasing me." 
"So it is of you I ask to find him."
"Go to the west and seek this man so that this witch will no more haunt my
dreams."
"When you come to his altar, kill him and end my torture."

As his last words were said, and the smoke left his lips, his image began to
fade. "Wait", I cried, "there is more I must know." But all that was left was
the last of his smoke and the name of a man I had been commissioned to seek. 

Standing up, I made my way from the bar to a room I had rented upstairs, and
went in to sleep off a nights worth of drink. As I hung up my pack, I felt
unconsciousness come over me in a wave. Laying down I heard her voice come to
me "You must come and free me, I am his captive in the temple."
"Who are you?" I asked. My voice sounded far away.
"Who I am is not important" the voice echoed "I will not let you forget me."

And so it was, that in my dreams for the weeks and months to follow I would
her her voice. It would come to me faintly at first and then stronger and
stronger, finally driving me to the west. I would move from town to town,
asking anyone who would listen what they knew of Eidilon. Some only knew the
name, others knew what seemed to be 'lore', but I continued west, driven. 
Through hill and swap I would continue on, killing the occasional water snake
or pillaging a birds nest for sustenance. I would sleep only a few hours at
night, and in that time she tortured my dreams. Waking I would gather what
little I had with me and continue to move. 
Then at the end of the swap came the ocean. I could taste the salty air long
before seeing the blue waters, and as I pushed out of the last bog my heart
sank. The pack I held dropped weightlessly from my shoulder and hit the sand
at my feat. In the distance the hazy shape of an island took form on the
horizon.  
Plunging my body into the freezing water I began to swim, knowing that he was
closer now than ever. The witches voice reverberated in my head, and I could
hear her squeal in glee. She called me onwards, pleading with me to hurry.
Even as my arms went numb her voice was still strong in my head "You must
hurry, there is no time for your pain, no time for your hunger." 
The waves crashed against my body and threw me the last hundred meters to the
shore where I sat freezing and exhausted on the verge of hypothermia. Upon
scanning the beach I found someone had built a fire and lit it, as if
expecting me. I crawled to the fire and lost consciousness. This time my sleep
was pure, no voices came to me, only visions of home and of my friends. 
When I awake the stars were out in the sky. I saw the formations named after
the gods Jaf and Anipa, and the cluster of stars said to be home to the
Archwizards. The waves lapped carelessly on the beach, and I lay back to
sleep, but this time she was with me, screaming. 
"Awake, I have not brought you this far so that you can sleep!"
"Rise adventurer, for you are near and I grow weary of your quest."

Pushing myself up to my knees I found a sudden second wind. My steps seemed
light and effortless, and as I moved on the island sun rose to greet me.
Stepping away from the water, I found the island was nothing but a massive
desert, where I could not see from one side to the other. Only the distortion
of the heat shimmer would break up the landscape, and through it all her voice
echoed in me "Move, Move, Move."
Now here, lost in this desolate waste, I know it must have been her lust for
freedom which lead her to carelessly drive me into the desert. In a cloudless
sky the burning sun shows no hint of setting. My tongue is swollen and
painful, there will be no rest today. Turning my steps, one over the other, I
know this will not be my end. 
Looking to the horizon my cracked lips begin to bleed as I let out a hoarse
cry. There I see a town, blurred in the waves of heat, it is real because she
sees it as well and screams. She screams so loud I fall to the ground, and
grabbing my head I think 'soon this ends'. 











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