The sun in Andrake was fierce, as usual. These were the days when Xenor wished he had chosen to study Hydromancy so he could cool himself off, he knew basic water spells but nothing substantial enough to cool the heat the sun threw at him. Instead he chose to study the ways of the fire, what good was that now; well he could block the sun with a wall of fire yet he would just increase the temperature. He frowned, he only chose pyromancy because his father was the best in the land and he wanted to follow in his footsteps and where was his father now? Probably out in the wilderness wresting dragons with his bare hands. He would never live up to his father, even if his skill did surpass his no Human would notice the achievement of a half-breed.
Derwalt was struggling to keep up with the Elven mage’s stride, he often broke into a run that looked as though a penguin had lost one leg and was chasing a fish on land. Derwalt was a proud man, he had been among prestiged Dwarves back in his mountain days but chose to give it up for a life among the trees and the sun. Derwalt had never even seen the sun until he was 25 years old, though this is relatively young age for a dwarf as they are known to live up to 200. Derwalt was born in a mountain cave, he grew up in a mountain cave and for most of his life he worked in a mountain cave; he was 123 years old yet still able to swing an axe at a frightening pace. He wasn’t Dwarven royalty, but that wasn’t exactly hard to come by with the Dwarves; they had over 56 different families proclaiming their royalty in the Dwarven kingdom, and the Dwarves had big families.
The two had been travelling for a mile out of Andrake, into the salt wastes heading towards the Elven kingdom. Xenor knew he would need companionship on his journey and was grateful having Derwalt accompany him. In all honesty, Xenor had no idea what his journey was, he just felt leaving Andrake to seek some sort of sense of the note was the right step to take. He could have headed in any direction but his Elven instincts drew him towards the forest. Derwalt was uncomfortable heading towards the forests, he had low opinions of Elves, often describing them as; “pompous arrogant tree huggers who ’ad nought better to do than argue with Humans”. Xenor could see his point, the Elves had apparently done very little in the past three centuries bar argue with the Humans.
Xenor decided the pair were getting nowhere fast, he cast a slipstream portal for them to travel through. The familiar stomach wrenching feeling took hold as their bodies essences travelled the entire desert continent in a mere second. Xenor opened his eyes to find the lush green forest edge metres in front of him, he felt warm, this place was his heritage, well, part of it anyway. Stepping through the oddly abrupt border of sand to grass was a surreal experience but one that wasn’t uncommon in Myrdoth; the elves had expanded their territory via magically enhancing tree growth and terrain expansion, the gradual transition between the continents one would expect was all but devoured.
Xenor could sense Derwalt’s unease; he was used to being in encloser spaces having spent most of his dwarven adult life in a cave however something about the trees scared him, their menacing, twisted extrusions pointing down on him as if they were each poised to launch from the trunks and pierce his heart.
“Calm, Derwalt, you have nothing to fear here. I am hoping my elven brethren will be kinder than the human nobility!”, Xenor whispered.
“Then why ye’ whisperin’ ya’ lanky tart! Try tellin’ me ta’ calm, i feel like the bloody trees want ta eat meh’!”, Derwalt replied, carefully keeping his voice below his usual commanding dwarven bellow.
Xenor ignored the dwarf and carried on into the forest, the light of the desert still shone onto their backs, they had not come very far at all yet it felt as if they had been walking for at least 20 minutes. Something wasn’t right, it was as if the ground beneath them were moving against them to impede their progress.
‘Strange’, though Xenor, but not beneath the elves. They were extremely private and the magic cast on this forest more than likely had mechanisms for preventing pesky human, or other races, intefering with elven affairs.
As before, carried on work.