Part 87: Forgotten

11 to Burning Sun, Goloris, 34 days remaining

Oh my, we’ve found just the weirdest things in this hoard. For a dragon who called themselves the ‘Dragon King’, they sure didn’t have much. What a foolish dragon, to pick Shell Island as its habitat! If they were sent by Amalj’aa or Khar’shan, then they should have asked for a different mission. The absurdity of the hoard just blows my mind. 

There’s a book of art that the tortles made, and the drawings are… Let’s just say that art is subjective. There is also a wagon wheel. Just one. A single wheel. Where’s the wagon? And what tortle thought this would be a good tribute?

Tortle: “Hey there, mister dragon sir. I brought your tribute. It’s a singular wooden wheel with a few notches on it, and you can even see where it was shoddily repaired!”

Dragon: “Oh, yes, that’s precisely what the Dragon King desires! Hand-me-down wagon wheels! It fulfills all my draconic needs!”

Like, what?

Goodness, there are so many oddities in here. There’s a jar of dried pasta, a marble, two oars that don’t match, a broken helmet, and a stone carving of a little naked nymph. Actaeon took that one for himself. I found a golden kitten statuette that I thought was cute, so I snagged that one for me. Oh, and Father found a bag of teeth. 

A bag of teeth.

A bag. With teeth in it.

Oh, great Dragon King, your needs are truly met now that you have this bag of various teeth!

I guess there are some useful things in there. There are some shackles we can use if we want to bind someone up. There are some feathers that I think I’ll take for myself. Oh, and Father found a black mask that doesn’t fit him. I’m going to create a mask similar to that and give it to him so he looks more fearsome in battle. There’s also an invisible boot. I tripped on it when I found it. The boot itself is invisible an I only discovered it by feeling what it was. If I put my foot inside it, it looks like I’m missing a leg. I wonder what sort of shenanigans I can do with that..?

Obviously I’m going to prank Briar with it. Or maybe Torag, or Father. No, I can’t prank Father. Last time I did that, he got upset. Poor paranoid Shadow. No, wait, now I’ve got it. I know exactly what I’ll do! Hehehehehe…

Clio thought it would be kind of us to leave some of the trinkets for the geonids that go wandering in the crags of the mountains, so we left a few of the shinier things behind. After those with stronger stomachs than I were done gathering magical reagents from the Dragon King, we set to sacrifice his body. Briar chided Shadow and I (mostly me, Father threw me under the wagon and said it was my fault) for doing such a poor job with the sacrifice of the Dreaming Sun’s Avatar back on the Golden Heart. In our defense, we-

Eh, never mind. Briar’s right, we did a terrible job. I forgot all the words and everything. We’ve seen Briar do this a thousand times and we still goofed it up. Kiora, forgive us, for we know not what we’re doing! We guessed on… pretty much all of it. But Clio says that ten percent of a sacrifice is intent. Maybe Kiora knows what we were trying to do. If I ever get a chance to talk to her, like face to face, I’m going to have to profusely apologize for that botched sacrifice.

Something that always intrigued me about Briar now that she’s changed her form is that her magic is very different. She’s still a druid and I sense a lot of magic in her, but it’s different now. Despite her being in a new form, she’ adapted pretty quick. I dare say she even looks comfortable now that we got her some proper shoes and everything. 

Her fire is different. I mean, it’s blue now. As a centaur, her fire was like mine: red and orange and super hot. Her blue fire is so pretty now. I asked her if that fire is hotter now, and then turned and asked Torag and Shadow if Briar or I am hotter. They just got uncomfortable and walked away. Clio made a comment about me not knowing what I’m saying sometimes.

The truth is, I knew exactly what I was asking, heheheheh. I just like to see them squirm from time to time.

We got on the elevator with Agniya to go back down the mountain, and made our way towards Ahoyhoy. It was quite dark when we arrived, and the gathering was quiet. The tortles hadn’t yet gone to sleep for the night, so Rendu and I regaled them with the story of our conquest of the Dragon King while the others went about their business. Whilst telling the tortles about the dragon’s two heads doing different things, we heard a shout from outside. 

Shadow: “This cookbook is worthless!” – followed by the sound of Briar and Clio’s laughter.

I guess Father had found a cookbook amongst the hoard and wanted to try out some authentic Shell Island cuisine. When Briar showed me the cookbook, I just about died! It has things like “Apples are good to eat” and “Rocks are not good to eat”. That’s it! It’s even funnier when you think about a tortle offering it to the Dragon King.

So Shadow ended up going fishing instead, with Torag (trying) to help catch an octopus. Actaeon fixed up our armor and I repaired our torn clothing. The tortles were quite pleased to hear that we Dragonlords solved their dragon problem so efficiently. And they were even happier when Briar and Shadow served up a lovely meal to help us all go into a peaceful and beautiful sleep.

10 to Burning Sun, Goloris, 33 days remaining

Not a single one of us slept peacefully last night! Oh, Father, you and your spices! 

For dinner last night, Shadow and Briar put together a meal of fish and rice and made a lovely stew. Briar’s meal was a little more bland as she figured the tortles wouldn’t be used to anything extreme. Their diet is mostly just fish and fruit, after all. The tortles were exceptionally receptive to such a delightful meal.

Father, on the other hand, wanted to introduce them to spices and the joys of having your mouth on fire in an endless torment of pepper and curry sin. Most of the tortles just politely accepted it and dealt with the pain. But poor old man Mudgraw! He cried literally all night long because of the spices!

We bade farewell to the tortles and left for the Gjallarhorn. Agniya is with us. He left strict instructions for the tortles to begin making ships (Kaveh the shipbuilder will do this work) and to be prepared to go to Ellandyr. The tortles were quite pleased to join our war efforts. 

Actaeon summoned the Keledone, Azorius’s clockwork servant. He collected some of the more impressive trinkets from us and paid gold for them. I also asked the Keledone if he could deliver one of the dragon eyes we collected from the Dragon King to Azorius for me and make something with it. I was hoping for a wand but Keledone said a staff would be more likely as the eye was just too big.

We’ve now set sail and are on our way to the Forgotten Sea. It’s a boundary we’ve not yet crossed as it is far too close to the titans. But with the power we’ve amassed and the people on our side, we’ve no choice but to risk entering Amal’jaa’s domain. 

It’s getting late in the evening and we’re preparing to go to sleep now. It was a beautiful day of sailing. I spent some time with Nessa and her friend Nylea before going down to the rowing deck and talking with the crew. It’s a little smellier down there, but they’re all just kind people. I offered to help row but they all kind of just laughed at me. I’m supposed to be this big, powerful Dragonlord, but I’m far too weak to row one of these monstrous oars. But the crew was very kind. We enjoyed talking amongst each other before I went back up again.

Clio and Briar and Zirconis were in the kitchen for much of the day, laughing at the tortle cookbook. Clio eventually went up to the top deck for some air and talked with Reilana for a bit. The siren wants to assist us on the ship in some way and we appreciate the effort. Torag, Dromoka, Actaeon, and Malkarion were in the training room most of the time while Torag was working on his magical essence. Shadow and Ysgramor went in to work, too, and everyone in there was scarce for most of the day. Rendu was captaining at the helm with Malikos.

There’s a storm coming in, and Malikos suggested we all get below deck quick before it starts raining. The ship might rock a lot tonight, so I better secure my belongings or-

The Forgotten Sea is so frightening! I was wholly unprepared for such a nightmare! Rendu and Malikos sounded an alarm right as we were headed below deck. Between the flashes of lightning, they saw three ships in the distance. They were much closer than we expected. The last time any ships were this close to us in open water, we were being attacked by pirates. I’m afraid we don’t know who these ships belonged to because we were never given the chance to ask.

We manned the ballistas immediately, wondering if these ships were enemies belonging to the League of Storms, and we began to close the distance. If they meaned us any harm, we can quickly knock them out of the water. As we did, though, Torag and Briar both hollared: monster ahead!

Between the cracks of lightning and the booming thunder, an eerie sight appeared beneath the waves. Monstrous tentacles, like those of an octopus or a squid, rose from the sea and smashed into the strange ships. We heard no cries from their crew as the rain slashing down at us was deafening, the thunder notwithstanding. Rendu gave the command: we were now on a rescue mission. Whoever these strangers were, we would not leave them to such a terrible fate!

But it was too fast. These strangers had fewer weapons than we, and the tentacles wrecked their vessels too quickly. Actaeon, Torag, and Rendu fired the ballistas personally, tearing into the mysterious beast, but it raged on against its victims. In mere moments, the three ships were torn apart and were sinking beneath the stormy waves.

That was not all, though. Perhaps the beast meant to turn on us next as we closed the distance, reading more weaponry. As it struck its final blow on the last ship, ripping it entirely in half, something else – something far larger – struck out at it. The monster was killed in a near instant as we fully saw its whole body now, raised high in the air, clasped between the deadly jaws of another beast. This newcomer was a sea serpent, far larger than anyone could fathom. It shook its massive head, killing the tentacled monster, and cast it aside in the deep. And then, it turned to us.

Though its mouth did not move, we heard its voice in our heads, echoing loudly and painfully. “Welcome to the Forgotten Sea. Allow me to make something very, very clear. This is my realm. Ye are trespassers. Stay out of my way, and I shall stay out of thine, until the promised day cometh.”

The Primal Tide – for that is what this monstrosity was – beheld us and slowly sank beneath the tempestuous sea. Though the rain and thunder deafened our hearing, all of us only heard one thing once the Primal Tide disappeared: the terrified beating of our own hearts.

Rendu reacted first, ordering the crew to row as hard as they could towards the wreckage of the three ships. The monster – I later learned this was a fabled kraken, a squid-like monster of ill repute – left no one alive in the flotsam. All we found were scraps of sails, some rope, and broken wood. We stayed out here for at least an hour, calling out fruitlessly to the sea for any survivors.

Our nerves are shot, but the crew is brave. We continued to sail towards the Isle of the Dragon, our next target. We mean to avenge Vaevictus and Torag for the wrongs Jadaferlas inflicted upon their family. And I’ll put on a brave face. I’m terrified of the Primal Tide now, and I am certain that was its intention. It sized us up and found us lacking. Perhaps the Twin Titans are doing the same.

I may not sleep well tonight, but I will not let that stop me. Nor will it stop my companions. We are the Dragonlords. People need us. I’ve no time to cower. We must all do our best! We will triumph and save the people! Our biggest worry is how we’ll fight the next dragon, Jadaferlas. 

Oh, and my other worry is how in Xerender am I going to make a fearsome mask for Shadow? All my linen dies are pink!