Tales of Gandamyr
Valor's Journal3 Justice is Blind
The council of High Myr is gathered before me, resplendent in their vestments of high office and power. There are 9 of them, men and women who have dedicated almost a century of life to the service of an ideal greater than themselves. I am in awe of their power, and I feel unworthy to be among them.A man steps forward wearing a white stole emblazoned with sigils of mystery and authority, with gold chains engraved with the glory of the Undying lord about his waist and neck. Within his large hands he bears an ornate scroll displaying my personal seal. High Adjudicator Gauge Lothander is a grizzled and ancient man, peppered with white hair, calloused hands, and a face of leather and iron.
His face is marred by an ugly scar that runs from eye to jaw, a wound he suffered as a Justicar while purging Orc Tribes to the south of Rhegianova. His eye is still there, but the iris was cut by a jagged and rusty orcish blade, and now only a milky white orb remains. Some say the eye allows him to see into the future itself. Others who play at the edge of blasphemy with their honeyed words intimate that it was a gift from something darker that has allowed him such high office. I put such doubts from my mind. They are heresy and he is my lord.
“These are Grave Charges Adjudicator.”
I stand with my head bowed. I spoke with as much confidence as I could muster, and yet I sounded like a mouse as my voice echoed ineffectually against the walls and pillars of this hallowed hall.
“They are true to a word High Adjudicator. The ancient enemy of Myr and Mankind yet lives in secret among us. They showed me their homeland, and the secret pass to arrive there.”
He sat and considered my words for a moment, while the council’s steely and unwavering gaze threatened to sunder my precious calm and courage. Lothander bid me to rise, and handed my scroll work back to me.
“What … what am i to do with this?”
“You are to lead our next Crusade ….. Justicar.”
Einar massive frame knelt before me, but even as he bowed, he still stood a head taller than I. He was never a man of many words, eloquent or otherwise, but when he spoke i could tell he had prepared what he could say with great care and deliberation.
“You’ve saved my people from terrible destruction holy man. Your talents as a healer are renowned. We owe you and Myr a life debt. Every man woman and child of the tribe and of all tribes are yours.”
My thought was only in numbers, not in mercy or righteousness. No more time for fine debates on law or philosophy. No more time to heal or to win hearts. Myr demands obedience and sacrifice. I spoke not as an Adjudicator any longer. I am a Justicar, an Avatar of war made flesh.
“Are you prepared to abandon your heathen gods, and embrace Myr’s ever glowing light? Are you prepared to put to the sword those who must be, so that we may be one force”
He stood tall and beat his fist upon his breast.
“We are Justicar. The last of the rebellious tribes have been pacified. Bring the light you showed me to everyone in the world, and my sword and the sword of every Barbarian is yours”.
I smiled slightly. It was the first time in many years.
“Rise High Chief. You are now Myr’s Chosen, and the tip of his spear.”
Gorack stonespeaker slammed into the door with only his body and the violence of a wild mare, breaking apart the wooden beam keeping out undesirables while I studied. He spoke at my back as I walked down the hall.
“Ya dunna hafta do that Valor! our home is here, and yet on your say so, father marches 30 thousand dwarves to war in a land I can’t even fucking pronounce. Forgive me for sayin so, but you’ve gone a bit daft lately. I was content to leave ya alone, but soon as your daftness makes me or my kin go where we don’t want to … i have to speak up.”
I tapped my staff on the ground and muttered a prayer, and as I did so Myr’s power coursed down my arm and into the stone. An echo of deafening power resounded throughout the chamber as Gorrack stepped back, momentarily shaken.
My voice was calm and collected when i spoke, in stark contrast the violence of my magics.
“I am a representative of Mauradin. Through me his will is known. I know you love your home, and that you loathe to leave it. But our enemy is a mysterious one of awesome power that can work dark and foul magics across both space and time that can even reach you here. When the kingdoms of men fall, it will your mountain home that comes next. I would have you with me in this, and not against me. Do as your father wishes, and lead the dwarven contingent in our new army”
Gorrack crossed his arms in front of him, looking both concerned and angry. Then he waved his arms in front of him, as if it was no bother at all.
“Aye. I was always gonna tag along. Forgive me for a little bluster and complaining, it’s in my nature eh? You’ll have my Axe and that of me kin. But I ain’t required to pretend I enjoy it.”
Allana Na Hac now lays before me, sitting in a puddle of his own blood that pools about his feet and hands. He was whispering to himself, as those who near death normally do. My mace felt good in my hand, my shield marked with the scars of battle. Fire rose behind him for miles as forests and cities burned. The screams of the dying filled the air.
I walked over to Allana’s fallen form, while he stared up at me with unbelieving eyes.
“You are faster than me Talla’na’wani. You are older, and more wise. You are tactically superior in almost every way. I am considered intelligent among my people, and yet my mind moves like Molasses while yours like Quicksilver. How is it that my Armies defeated yours? How is it that my mace struck before your sword?”
He tried to say something, but blood and bile came up instead, spilling up over his chin and chest and splattering onto the elvin runes upon his chest.
I dropped my mace at his feet.
“It is because Myr’s power is strong in me, while your Gods have forsaken you. You have no right to life any longer, which is why your race now passes into the mists of unformed void from which we all come. Every man or dwarf that dies today finds warmth and eternal bliss in Myr’s light. Every elf will become nothing. Less than nothing, for no God cares for your souls. Now watch what you have wrought, as your soul fades to oblivion.”
I walked away towards the burning cities of and the cries elvin women and children, as Allana Na Hac cried. He would not survive. The embrace of unfathomable sorrow should be his last thought, not the balming envelope of battle and rage.
It was a chilly night, and the rains fell heavy and hard. It was only a few weeks after High Adjudicators Gauge Lothander Funeral, and my own Ascension to the High Adjudicator. I was content this night, softly sipping wine and reading reports of the various battlefronts. Within months we will have an empire, greater than anything the world has ever seen. Peace and order will finally come, after a decade of bloodshed.
Suddenly the lights in the room shifted, as the furious wind whips up Battle honors and banners lined walls of my office. I hear the creek of a window. The windows creaked and rattled, banging hard against the walls, while a howling wind and a creeping cold entered the chambers.
I moved to close the windows, when I heard a sound behind me.
“You have broken your Oath. You are a hypocrite, you are a fraud.”
I turned and now the Half-Elvin Leif Gunnerson stood in my office, bow drawn, dressed in the black of an assassin. His face was scarred by the horrors of a war he had fought for too long. While he gazed at me with the rage and density of a dying sun, I could still see the sadness in his eyes as well.
“The Elves are a dead race Gunnerson. I could not save them. There gods have forsaken them, and they had no right to this place any longer … But you have humankind in your blood, and that is enough to protect you.”
“Humankind!” and he spit onto the carpet. “The Gods didn’t kill them. You Did. You’re a murderer, a slayer of children. You killed, you tortured, you razed cities. You’re a Tyrant, and I’ll do the world a favor delivering you to your God. ”
I attempted to protest, but he let the arrow fly, and it went into my eye. I screamed as indescribable pain rushed over my body.
I woke up, screaming, sweating and confused. I was still here , in the city of the Wood Elves. The trees rustled silently against a gentle wind, while the breeze would occasionally touch my skin.
I at first I thought it was a dream, but it was so lucid … so real. No, it’s an Omen, a possible future. Is this what Myr wants? All that death and suffering and chaos ..… or is this something I need to prevent?