Trees of Prophecy
Gias Journal 2
The Journal of Gias Marcallas: Second Entry
We traveled to Freyrs Basin without incident. When we arrived at the front gate there was already a line of spectators, travelers and presumably competitors who’ve arrived early for the Tournament. The guards at the gate informed us we were the second group that day to claim to be from Thors Point. I explained that this was obviously a mistake and he explained that it obviously wasn’t his mistake and that we should take it up with the appallingly self-important, strutting, jackass that got here before us.
We found Xander’s brother already at the admissions tent, accompanied by his gang of thugs. Zachariah was furious when they wouldn’t let him in, but they didn’t match the names on the list. Zachariah tried to claim Lord Samael’s incompetence, and kept it up even louder when he noticed us approaching.
Xander (admittedly relieved to learn at least his brother had escaped the tragedy back home) relayed the news to Zachariah about the fate of their town. Zachariah did not seem even the least bit concerned, and thought it was all an elaborate joke. This was a huge mistake.
Xander snapped and sucker punched Zachariah in the gut. But even after witnessing a magically created image of the devastation at Thor’s Point (thanks to Maldora), Zachariah refused to believe us and stormed off vowing vengeance.
Overhearing our story, the Admission’s guard took us to see the Town Overseer, Thaddius Brown, who immediately summoned an aging wizard by the name of Zoltan who was just moments away from teleporting to the capital. We could either compete in the Tournament, or travel with Zoltan to take our news to the Queen. Maldora seemed worried but willing to go. Celthalion looked eager to prove something and agreed to go. Normally, I wouldn’t want to visit Queensport but this was bigger than my past, and bigger than the Tournament. I said we should go. Xander seemed on the verge of a nervous collapse and said nothing. So we loaded up onto Zoltan’s wagons and headed for the capital.
Zoltan brought us to Queensport by way of a complicated and advanced teleportation ritual which deposited us not too far from the Queen’s palace. We had no trouble gaining an audience with the Queen as Zoltan was expected that day by Isolde herself.
I had never met the Queen in person but heard a lot about her from my father in my former life. Of course back then, she was known as Isolde of Zanthia and her skills in the sword and art of war were legendary. Of course, it was little trouble for a famous hero such as herself to ascend the ranks and claim the realm for her own. But it was years after I left when she finally seized that power.
In the time since she’s proven herself to be a worthy and skillful ruler. Qualities which I could sense immediately upon seeing her. I’d felt them before in another. Olivia had the same kind of look, a sort of dour determination and solemn acceptance of her destiny. That kind of rock solid faith you can bend Black Iron around.
The Queen and her adviser, Ivoxam the High Priest of Odin, listened to our story. They exchanged their thoughts with each other too low for me to hear. Before we could finish, a gnarled and intense old woman with the bearing of one who is used to being obeyed, rushed into the throne room and screeched at us about climbing a mountain to the north of the city. She claimed we were part of a prophecy and that we had to retrieve something from Odin’s Shrine at the top of Mt. Hyjal. Isolde looked as if she wanted to argue with the old woman but eventually gave in. Apparently to disobey the Oracle is heresy and punishable by banishment.
Since it seemed we had no choice in the matter, we agreed to travel to the Mountain for the Queen.
I accompanied Maldora and Celthalion for a drink in town. I was careful to not pick a tavern where I would be recognized. Maldora and I had front row seats to a very rare spectacle, the mating ritual of the Dragonborn. At least Celthalion found some comfort from the stress of our recent troubles.
In the morning we participated in a prayer to the gods with the Queen, who bade Thor protect us on our journey to the mountain. Before we left, Isolde presented Xander with an ancient magical sword. She claimed responsibility for stationing Xander’s father in Thors Point and therefore responsibility for his disappearance and possible death. I don’t know of what comfort it was if any. Xander seemed to be sinking into himself, a shadow of his former vitality and spirit. I fear unless we find out for certain the fate that befell his parents, we may never see the old Xander again.
At the base of the mountain, we barely escaped being torn to pieces by a swarm of Kruthiks. Celthalion took the worst of their rage and we nearly lost him. I fear he forsakes his own safety when ours is in jeopardy. I must swear to keep better vigilance in our next trials. For victory is not worth even a single one of my comrades lives.
The shrine was guarded by three Valkyries. We chose to rest before our final approach. I would have taken them then, we have little time to waste on such things, but they fell before us soon enough. Now we must take these mysterious items back to the Oracle.
I am certain our part in this has far to go still but I must have faith, Acna will show us the way.
- Gias Marcallas