Oh gods, what have I become!? How can I have fallen so that Tyr and Torm no longer answer my prayers? Even Ilmater seems to be reluctant in his blessings. I wonder if the taint of my evil heritage has finally won out.
After a short rest, I found myself reaching to the other tome. I was compelled to open it and read its alien and horrid text. It was as if the tome sang in discordant harmony with my soul and the sinister counterpoint to the evil blade I carry. The psychic shock from attempting the previous tome sabotaged the reason in my mind and I was unable to resist.
As I read the fiendish text, a mantle of evil settled upon my shoulders. I could hear the maniacal cackle of the Fiend echo in my soul, another victory won. My mind reeled from new concepts and new powers. I was drunk with the ecstasy of evil.
My first taste of the Triad’s disappointment showed itself as we left the scriptorium and made our way to the lower levels of the lair we explored. It was colder yet, though I felt none of it. I did what I could for my friends, nay family, giving what clothing I could and remain decent. It seemed to help; however, I could see their shivering under brave facades.
We elected to descend via the hole south of the refuse room. The hole in the scriptorium seemed to be unnaturally deep and we doubted that we could climb down from there. From the second hole, we could barely make out a plateau below us that would make the descent easier. I noticed the others slipping on the rope. My reflexes have not been the best, so I elected a more direct approach, one in which depended on the favor of the Triad to safely land on the plateau. In short, I jumped. The Triad rejected my prayer and I found myself on my back, on the plateau staring up at my snickering companions.
The sound of my impact alerted the denizens of the lair. In the distance, we could hear the approach of something large. Multiple large things. We barely had time to get ourselves organized before two scrags appeared from the icy gloom. I lifted a battered hand, drank a healing potion and charged. We defeated the aquatic trolls with only a few difficulties, for which we were grateful. We still had a white dragon to face and no time to gather our wits and tend wounds. We moved further into the lair, into an even colder end. I led the way, my dragon eye amulet would prevent the dragon’s breath from affecting me. My compatriots would not fair so luckily.
We rounded the corner of an icy range of peaks and entered the chamber of the dragon. The dragon was waiting for us. In fact, we truly had no expectation of surprise, but one can hope. The boasting of the dragon was typical of most dragons that we have encountered during our adventure. I neither remember the exact words, nor are they important. Our job here was to establish some resolution with the dragon, preferably one which resulted in his death.
The cavern rocked and icy stalactites fell among us. We dove from under them, but I was not as nimble as the others, and was struck. It was then, with inhuman, nay draconic, agility the dragon was upon us. It breathed its cone of icy doom. I was immune and suffered no damage. I was not so lucky against the tail and talons. A wave of dragonfear threatened to overwhelm me, but my strength held. Perhaps I am not so far from the Triad as I was afraid of for they sustained my will. However, no sooner than I pushed aside my fear that I fell to the dreadful claws.
I woke to the taste of a goodberry and felt some strength return. I groggily stood and took my bearings. Tairen had used a scroll to cast a wall of fire that encircled the dragon, infuriating it in waves of magical fire. Edward and Sven were nowhere to be seen, only an icy wall stood between me and the direction I had last seen them running. They later told me that Sven had been pushed into an icy, slushy pond and his constitution failed him. He succumbed to the cold and would have frozen to death if not for the heroic efforts of Edward dragging him from the pond.
Elyria reached into her quiver and nocked a particularly nasty looking arrow to her bow. The dragon seemed to flinch from the sight of it and I recognized it as one of the spoils we had won, a dragon slaying arrow. Her shot flew true and the dragon convulsed as the magic of the arrow threatened to overwhelm his life force. Elyria quickly nocked the last of the two magical arrows and followed the first shot. Again the dragon fought against the mighty magic of the arrow.
The arrows failed to kill the dragon, but we could tell that it had neared the end of its endurance. Blood flowed freely as we continued our gory business and finally dispatched the dragon.
From there, there isn’t much to add, the ice toads were distraught but accepting of the death of the dragon. We invited them to stay in the lair, I would endow their efforts to preserve and research. The leader agreed to accompany us back to Luskan and visit the Arcane Brotherhood. We have returned to Waterdeep and await the judgement of the council.
I sit here, warmed by a pleasant fire, drinking deeply from a tankard of ale while I write. Even now, I can feel the Drakhorn as it sounds in the distance. We know that it is close, we learned that it has a finite range. Eventually, we will seek it out.
But, what still haunts my sleep is my dereliction of my sworn duty to Tyr, Torm and Ilmater. I have neglected my gods and focused on physical prowess instead of strengthening my faith.
I have decided that it is time for Delilah to be set aside. However, it’s difficult, even now, to ponder such an idea. Between the fiend that flows in my blood, the power of the fiend that I took upon myself from the book, and the sword, a harmony of evil is a sweet, bitter lethargy of warmth and cold. I so long to be free of the taints that I have taken unto myself, yet I feel comforted by their influence though I know them to be wrong.
The path before me is difficult and the task of cleansing myself has made it harder yet. It is a path that I have carved for myself. One that the Triad intends for me to follow. To punish. To humble. And to prove my faith through strength and dedication.