My apologies for the interminable delay in my correspondence. It has been almost a year since I have been physically able to put ink to paper. I have thought of you every waking moment, and I hope you will forgive me.
When last I wrote to you, I was in Vallimore and about to embark on a quest for the Helm of the Inquisitor, in the hope that it would allow me to track your essence. Although the shade of the knight who had possessed it was entirely helpful and encouraged me to retrieve it from his body, his descendants became needlessly agitated and someone named Lord Travis Guildford declared that I had defiled his ancestor’s tomb. I tried to explain the truth, but they were ignorant in the ways of the occult. They took the helm away, labeled me a “necromancer” and imprisoned me. Expecting to be freed once I was able to explain the situation to a Magistrate, I waited. Unfortunately, everyone in this realm seems dreadfully uninformed and I fared no better there. As the weeks dragged into months, I began to despair of ever again being free to find you.
Just over a fortnight ago, an officer from the Vallimorian Army visited the jail where I was being held to offer me a bargain. In return for two years of service, I would be freed and pardoned of the ludicrous charges that had been leveled against me. Of course I chose to accept the offer. It seems they are not so ignorant as to let a valuable resource rot in a prison cell.
The next morning, I felt you near me in a most painful way. As I awoke, one of my fellow prisoners was singing a song that so reminded me of you. It was like the simple melodies you would hum to me as we studied in our secret tower alcove that looked over the mountainside. A part of me wanted to remain in that half waking moment and life felt colder when I realized the truth of it.
But, I digress.
They have assigned me to a “Lieutenant Keeper” who is a silvered and scarred human veteran named Allister Thannel. He seems unsympathetic and cares little for those of us under his control, but I sense no cruelty in him. There are five of us in his little unit, and we were forced to ride shackled in a caravan for the last fortnight. Aside from myself there are: Kael, a northlander barbarian who is some sort of prince; Morghul, a scar orc who uses rune magic; Rhiannon, a half-elf musical enchantress; and Salena, a shifter who somehow became a magitech knight. We are a truly motley bunch and I am not entirely impressed with anyone yet. I seem to be the most intelligent in the group by an almost embarrassing margin, although I was surprised to learn that the northlander and orc can both read at least.
We are stationed at an ancient keep in the District of Straivillin. It is ruled with an iron fist by the Margave Mikail Stravis. His eyes are the color of brutally used steel and he has all the warmth of the Gundurak mountains in the depths of winter. Although we are supposedly on the same side, he seems incredibly dangerous.
Tomorrow we will depart on our first mission as members of “The Black Legion” and venture into the Iron Forest to track bandits who have been preying on merchants and travelers. These sort of petty tasks may be beneath me, but for the time being they are my only recourse to freedom and my only way back to you.
You haunt my thoughts and dreams and my memories of you are so clear it often feels that you have simply stepped away for a moment. I picture you just as you were and my heart aches for what may have been.
Until we meet again…