Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Storytelling - Book 2, Chapter 1

I returned to the Istari's temporary tower, unsure if I would be worthy of his task. Gandalf had been so sure his colleague would benefit from my help, but when I had first met Radagast he regarded me with disinterest. I hoped he would still be awake.

Radagast's purpose in the Lonelands was to determine what evil was corrupting the land. Of course the orcs and goblins were turning the ruins and areas they camped into cesspools, but Radagast was convinced some dark, ancient evil was darkening the soul of the land.

His first task for me was to check on some bog-prowler nests, and retrieve some of their moss. He continually referred to the freakish looking things as shepherds - tending to the trees. I don't think the gnarled trees in the blood-colored swamp really needs tending. Radagast innocently claimed he wished the bog-prowlers no harm, but I was going to slay any of the freaks where they stood if they attaked me. Who am I to argue with an Istari?

Maiden and I easily found the nests after killing a few orcs on our way to the swamp. Thankfully the bog-prowlers were all out hunting in the pre-dawn morning, and we only had to deal with a few overgrown bugs. I was surprised that there were no guards to the nests. Maybe Radagast was more correct than he believed. Maiden was little help when it came to rooting through the nests full of bog-prowler excrement, rat carcasses, and other decaying organic matter. She said that "it was not the job of a Herald."

Of course in an Istari's mind if he could get one adventurer to muck through shit, why not get two. I don't know how much ale it took to convince a stubborn dwarf, but I met Thorinnog, a dwarf guardian. He was well known in the Lone-Lands, however this was the first time our paths had crossed. Thorinnog greeted me with a soiled hand, which I returned in kind. We dug through some nests side by side, and he seemed to feel he was finished with the task before I. I needed just a few more samples of the moss, when Thorinnog told me he needed to see a man about a job and ran off. I felt our fellowship had ended, and had a hard time deciding whether I would again band with the skitterish dwarf.

Radagast greeted me kindly when I returned. The old man either did not smell my odor, or was polite enough not to care, but I dutifully handed over the small pouch of less-than-fresh moss. He seemed to just look at the pouch then toss it aside. I don't know whether he saw with his wizadry, or mucking through shit was just another initiation to help the Free People's cause. Still, I had seen the corruption of the land with my own eyes, and I knew there was work to do.

I didn't mention to the wizard the bog-prowlers I killed... two of them just because they looked weird and I didn't like them. Maiden did smirk a bit as Radagast and I discussed the completed quest. We are going to have a "talk" when we make camp.

1 comment:

Disseminated said...

Awesome narrative. A hero's work is never done. Don't worry... the quest gets more glorious than poking thru bog-prowler waste. ;-}