I opened my eyes, refreshed from my meditation. Standing up, I checked the wards that I had set around my camp, testing them, probing them with my mind. I smiled in satisfaction, the wards still stood. I am Acaeb of the Red Robe. Perhaps you've heard of me. Perhaps not. I don't care. All that matters is that you do not stand in my way.Since I was 18 no one, and I mean NO ONE who has stood in my way has lived. Except one.
And he wouldn't stay that way for long.
His name is Ruth'Rak. He killed my master. That threw a loop into my training. Training I have long since mastered. I made sure that I was ready. My staff, my herbs, my... pixie dust. NO that is not really what it is called. However it is easier to refer to it as pixie dust than to call it by it's full name. Asto en' en' i' istar ol majik. See what I mean? Good. And my steel. A dagger strapped into the inside of my sleeve, and one hidden in my staff, which could be released by the touch of knob. Discretion is the better part of valour. Caution is the better part of discretion. That's what they taught at the academy. I sighed... The academy was not a source of good memory, and although some would see me as old my memory had not yet deserted me.
As a child in the grand city of Halior you were trained as a warrior. No exceptions. A warrior, they said ought to be strong, courageous, and smart. I met two of the requirements. Unfortunately the one which I lacked proved to be the one which was required the most. I remembered the day when I could take the insults and the jibes no longer, and tasted magic for the first time. In a yell of fury at my tormentor I shouted a string of words, which I had not read, or heard spoken before. My tormentor laughed at me for my apparent loss of sanity. Then he burst into flame.
I shook my head. Those were not thoughts to be dwelling on before a battle. I left my camp, and walked the short distance to hill overlooking the goblin outpost. I took out my horn put it to my lips and blew. Everything within a few miles could hear it. That was my intent. Misdirection was something that every wielder of the Dark arts must have. I put away my horn, visulaized the hill on the opposite of the outpost in my head then spoke a single word. Lorzare I whispered, and I was gone. I appeared on the opposite hill and watched as the foul beasts traveled away from me in search of the group who had blown the horn. Only one person remained, as I knew he would. At heart he was a coward, though he would mask it with brutality to any who challenged him.
I started down the hill, but stopped as I heard another horn blast. Only I heard it however. It was a blast in my head, a warning that someone had crossed the outer wall of my wards. I closed my eyes and and a picture formed of the intruder, or intruders in this case. Two dwarves. Twins. Since when were there twin dwarves? I shrugged and opened my eyes. The wards wouldn't hurt them, they were not orc kind nor did they wish me any harm. I continued down the slope and into the encampment. In the center was the largest tent. Inside that was my enemy. I walked to the entrance flap, and mustered a little bit of will. I called a small gust of wind to blow the tents open and I strode in.
"Ruth'Rak" I said in way of greeting, and an orc, far larger than those who were headed on a goose chase spun around to look at me. Fear was on his face. I smiled at him, and raised my staff.
This wouldn't take long.