From the Journals of Wolfsturm Daein, entry 19
This page is dotted with dripped liquids and has an odd smell. It is considerably crisper as if it has been dried out
If there are gods, they have decided to spit in my face and let me boil under the effects of their plague ridden gift.
I was finally enjoying myself in so many long weeks! I had been swept up in the high adventure of the woods. It was not often that I got to bask in nature in the twisting spires of steel and wood that make up The City. The forest seemed innately more wondrous than the drab countryside that we passed on our way to the Fallencairn Valley. There is something… magic out there. I can feel it. What it might be I do not know.
Getting back to the heart of the matter though, our little picnic in the forest was going quite well. We seem determined to beat a path of conquest into this valley, starting here. It’s a silly concept to me. A boastful pirate could claim an entire ocean to be his territory, but what point does it hold? Shall he tax the water itself? Even the most hardened work ethic would never cover the whole of it from interlopers. What sort of rule can be erected here? Better to plunder the sea of it’s riches with no worry of such things if you ask me. Riches are universal, you see, and travel far better than a country.
These dreams of conquest are sure to only work against us. As they already have! How long did Sticks and Adran argue on how to trap a wandering band of Draiads into some preposterous deal! I expect preposterous and outlandish deals from Sticks but that does not mean you need to encourage him by listening! We were nearly ambushed while they tried to plan this foolishness. Thankfully Sard seems to have a good (if addled…) head on his shoulder and took the fight to the enemy. I was not shy to swing into battle! It was far more fulfilling than the previous bout with the treacherous fey. We dispatched them quickly nevertheless.
As night fell and we made our way back we stumbled on a grisly sight. A pack of wolves feasting on fallen prey. At the head of the pack was a Wolfman! A disgusting creature caked in the blood of its prey, neither wolf nor man. I’d only heard of them in stories… and this one was holding a familiar weapon. The Kukuri of the hermit. The conclusion felt too obvious at the time, although I wish it had been something more sinister now. Our attempts to sneak past them were fruitless. A fierce fight erupted as the wolves pounced our mounts and the Wolfman lashed out with blade and bite. We were not so easily spurned however, and took control of the battle quickly. As I plunged my blade into the Wolfman’s heart, a horrifying transformation took place. His hair fell out and his skin morphed before my very eyes. My sword then had skewered not a beast, but a man.
I felt my heart dip into my stomach. Killing is not a pleasant business. In all of my righteous campaign in The City I tried to keep any sort of casualties to a minimum. I have always striven to make my exploits as bloodless as possible, although the harsh nature of these lands will surely change that. Perhaps it was more merciful to slay him. Would I seek death in such a wretched situation? Unable to control myself, battling with an inner demon? I cannot say. One cannot be blamed to strike out in self defense, but it leaves a bad taste in my mouth nevertheless…
…much like this foul medicine that Adran seems intent on poisoning me with! On one hand it is almost humorous to see this would-be conquistador dottering around like some nurse maid. On the other hand, I hate debts. I must admit I am feeling better, even though something still scratches at my mind every night.
To make matters worse the Werewolf’s brother is the king. The ramifications I do not even want to consider under my addled brain. Something for tomorrow.
The entry ends.
from the journals of Wolfsturm Daein, 20th entry
Crisis averted, it seems.
My lunacy has been thrown off and it seems the town has not strung us up above the castle for all to see. Fortunate indeed.
We set off into the forest again like the good little lemmings we are. I… wanted to make a point of putting down a grove I saw to paper… was it a grove? I can’t really recall for the life of me now. Well, no need to ponder on it further.
Now it seems we’re on to something… we’ve revealed an old path in the forest that seems to moving to a smoke trail. Could this be the barbaric settlement? Orge Town? I’m quite intrigued now. Jumping Jack could be but a mile off… my sword trembles with anticipation.