Fall of Kingdoms
Excerpts from Sharl’s journal (Pre-Awakening)
13th of Frostfall (Sharl is 2)
The heat feels good. Used to be too hot. Couldn’t breath right, had to sit down often, drink water. But now it feels good to stand near mom while she works. Mom says it’s ‘cuz I am of Fire, and I’m growing into my powers. I hope so! She’s used her breath to stoke the forge and add extra heat, and if I want to be like her, I need to learn to do it too!
14th of Frostfall (Sharl is 2)
“Growing into powers”. Almost burned down the house… Fire it is. Mom said she’ll teach me to control it. She laughed about it, said she did the same thing when she was my age. Made me feel better. Woulda have to run off and live in a cave or somethin’ if she was mad at me.
3rd of Evening Star (Sharl is 4)
Being of Fire is nice. The cold rains this season aren’t as bad as they are for others. Bundled up in layers to keep the rain off, they’re slow and plodding. And somehow, for all the care they show, they’re more clumsy! Sad. The rain is cool, and it steams off my scales as I stand in it. This keeps amazing me, despite mom telling me it’s normal. I guess it should be normal for me…but it still feels weird. Like I haven’t always been able to do this.
20th of First Seed (Sharl is 7)
Mom talked to me about Bahamut today. The first week I was with her, she crafted me an awesome symbol of a Dragon’s head that showed the light really well. She explained that Bahamut is a God, something really really powerful, and who was like the watchful father of all good Dragons and Dragon-kind, including us Dragonborn! As she was telling me about him, I couldn’t help but say “Honor to the King of the North Wind”. Mom was really surprised by that, asking where I had heard the name before. It was strange, I didn’t know. She frowned, but when I asked if I did something wrong she said I inva…invon… invoked, yeah invoked a prayer to him. She said she must have used it at one time, but didn’t seem like she believed it.
1st of Morning Star (Sharl is 10)
Mom woke me up early today, saying she had a gift for me. Took me out to the forge and folded her arms like she was waiting for a response. I looked over and saw the forge. When I looked back at her and just tried to blink the sleep out of my eyes she sighed and pointed to the hooks she hangs her tools on. There was a full second set! She said I’ve learned enough to start working on my own, not just attending her! I have my own hammers, my own gloves, tongs, chisels and files! She said she had to be around when I started the forge, but I could work on my own after that. Now I get to help more!
8th of Sun’s Height (Sharl is 12)
I’ve begun in the Militia today. Sergeant Rufus didn’t think I was ready for the training, but mom laughed at him and dared him to find a second year member I couldn’t beat. It was really embarrassing! But mom convinced Rufus to let me try. I presented my sword to my opponent in the fashion of honor mom taught me, and the rat-licking son-of-a-wench (I heard Rufus use that one today, though I’m not sure why a wench’s son should be ashamed. If someone called me a “son-of-a-smith” I’d just nod… Humans are weird) tried to attack me without returning the honor! Luckily he wasn’t very quick, and I manage to deflect his opening blow, turning him to the side and spinning around to catch him in the back of the knee as he went by. Rufus was impressed and said he wasn’t sure how much training I’d need, but I was ready for the militia. Mom just smiled and said he could apologize for doubting her by buying her a drink. He said he’d enjoy that… and come to think of it, I don’t remember mom coming home that night. Wonder where she was.
28th of Rain’s Hand (Sharl is 14)
Today I traveled with Sergeant Rufus, Jerek and Ash on patrol. Rufus said it was routine, but he hardly ever goes where he thinks it’s “routine”. I was right. He had heard from a merchant that some Gnolls were in the area, as they had attacked a fellow merchant a few days prior. We found where the merchant mentioned, and sure enough Ash found some tracks that looked Gnoll-ish. Sounds weird. Gnoll-ish. Anyway. We followed the tracks and eventually found a small campsite with a couple Gnolls sitting around. Sgt. Rufus went in with Jerek backing him up, and I moved around to flank them. He demanded to know what business they had in the Stagwood, but they just growled and jabbered something as they picked up their weapons. Rufus took the first, bashing it’s skull with his shield and finishing it off with a quick stroke of his axe. Ash managed to wound one, allowing Jerek to finish it off with his spear. The third tried to escape, but ran right into me. I offered it a nod as I rose my weapon, a Gnoll is due no courtesy. It took a weak swing with it’s club that I easily parried, allowing me to counter with a cautious swipe of my blade. I thought the Gnoll might have been trying to trick me with a weak attack as a feint, but my blow disarmed it and knocked it down. I gave it more credit than was due. We checked the site and sure enough, a small chest of linens was tossed to one side. Must have thought it was foodstuffs when they took it. Rufus informed me the Gnolls were thieves and would have murdered the merchant if they could have. In the name of Bahamut I put the Gnoll out of it’s suffering. Rufus congratulated me on my performance and offered a drink at Ordoc’s. Mead tastes strange.
10th of Mid Year (Sharl is 16)
Zachary showed me Connor’s journal. Something about this book of Connor’s offering “Endurance of a Bull, Mind of a Rabbit” had Zach laughing up a storm. Connor wrote that it would be useful to work all day and not be tired like a bull, while still thinking quickly despite the work. Zach told me it was for a “libido”, whatever that is, and he’d have to help Connor master that one soon, “for the kid’s own good, of course”. Of course. I asked mother, and she got a funny look in her eye. She only gets that look in her eyes when there’s girls around the forge when I’m working. Whatever this “libido” is, it’s got something to do with girls, bulls and rabbits. To be honest, Zach can keep his plans to help Connor’s libido all to himself, I sure want nothing to do with it.
3rd of Heartfire (Sharl is 20)
Almost finished the last longsword. Once it’s done I only have half a dozen short swords left in the order, and the militia will be taken care of. Can’t believe another year’s gone by. Tomorrow marks my 21st year at the Fort, and it seems to have gone by so fast. Ah well. Sleep willl be good, this was a large order they put in for rush. Connor’s father’s order will be for the day after tomorrow. Mother’s been pacing, she seems almost nervous. I’m not sure what that’s all about, but it’s got me a little on edge. Even have my own blade out here. Ryuumeiyo has been by my side for more than a few years now. I’m thankful to Bahamut for the guidance in it’s birth. Yes. I must be sleepy. Don’t normally ramble about Ryuumeiyo. Back to the forge, then off to bed…