The Summon Part IIMature

Sveipabjarg, or as the humans called it, Crown of Iron (and the elves, Narri cared not in the slightest about what they called it or about anything they did on any matter ever) was a natural wonder of five mountains as big as mountains could go and each impregnable on the outside with sheer drops, ice at their glittering peaks and waterfalls to make the going more slippery and to it, there was only one entrance. Aeons ago, and the Dvergar had a song for it, when Duarvlin was King of Dvergarhǫll, the Dwarf Hall, he had erected skjaldborg, the wall of shields, a vast stone structure with the shields of the houses that had ruled etched upon it, being a great many, but still not filling the wall since it was nearly as tall as the mountains. It had parapets containing embrasures and merlons all along and great braces to strengthen it on both sides. The gatehouses were taller than the very mountains, said to be visible from most places in the realm as the spired roof was always lit with a roaring flame. Indeed from its heights was visible much of the world around them.
                The arched pathway that led over the gate, itself a monstrosity in size that used to take dozens of tamed trolls to open until they learned to harness the power of steam, was closed, as it often was these days, and before the gate, keeping watch, were the statues of some of the greatest Dvergar that had ever lived, or still lived. Narri remembered them from his history lessons as a wee Dvergar (he hated the term Dwarf, that human usurpation of their race name was often used so derogatively). He knew all the stories, the great adventurers, the crafters of magical items... He fingered the blunderbuss he was forced to carry, strapped to his back, and wondered what his ancestors would think of him now. It required little skill to kill with that thing, much more to throw an axe over thirty metres and have it land square between the eyes of Goblin scum, like he could.
                As Narri made the walk to the far end of the wall, which gave entrance into the mountain Vakagørr, he looked to his left. Encircled by the crown, but as far away from the wall as it could be, was Dvergarhǫll. It seemed proud, to call the whole mountain a single hall for the dwarves—Well it wasn’t really a mountain, it was a volcano, and still it provided them with the deepest fires that allowed them to craft the greatest items the world would ever see. It was slightly taller than the rest of the mountains, said to be the tallest in the world, its peaks always shrouded in thick layers of white cloud nowadays, a mist born from the icy, snowy peaks. This mountain was connected to all the rest via stone archways that acted as tunnels so that if you were to look at this place from above or below, it would have the semblance of a wheel with five spokes.
                Like always, he felt a sense of deep satisfaction as he made the walk. His people had spent millennia creating the greatest structure known to the world. Indeed man would try to take that from them, but they just didn’t have that mind, that perfection of symmetry and angles, the strength of a good square or circle object as opposed to that elven tendency of chaos. Everything the Dvergar built, they riddled with an angular pattern that just looked right. No human could claim superiority over a several thousand year old Dvergar structure, never.
                He looked at the rune he kept tucked in his sleeve. He would kill anyone who— Brrroooooooooom!
                A noise like the very earth growling, rang out. It was a powerful sound ringing out all across the wondrous mountains, making everything shake as an earthquake. It was the summoning horn, calling a council, and it was partly meant for him.
                Narri made for the horn, as he walked, he saw Andwar walking ahead of him for the first time.
                “Hello friend!” He shouted, though it was a considerable distance, he was surprised when it reached the fellow.
                “And to you!” The old man shouted as he turned. He was a sturdy, stout one, just like himself, but where Narri’s hair and beard were a reddish colour and braided very long, akin to garnet, Andwar’s was more like hematite and much shorter and free.  They clasped hands and laughed merrily. “This place is so big it’s like meeting old friends.” He moved to Narri’s side.
                “Yes old man, and no doubt your age has something to do with it. We met yesterday over a nice mug of Reykr Ale and some juicy lupynx meat, always loved the stuff me; but don’t let it concern you, I suppose it happens to us all—“
                “Why you cheeky bugger!” he pushed Narri into the wall but guffawed all the same. “Aye but you’re probably right.” He let the laughter die and sighed. “What say you about this horn?”
                They had since passed into the mountain, heading towards Aflmikill, their Great Forge, where even now, they could hear the sound of metal being pounded by giant hammers falling from the ceiling and even the smell the smoke from the pits of lava used to heat those metals. The further they walked, the hotter it got.
                “Some foolish business no doubt. The King is older than you. Two days past, he asked me to find his ruddy axe—“ Andwar looked wide-eyed at that, dwarves treasured their weapons.
                “Oh aye, why’s that?”
                “He had it strapped to his back and forgot.” Narri shook his head and let out a breath. “Today he’s probably going to begin a search for his brains.”
                “Well now, hush with your treasons, we be close.” Andwar advanced into the forge and Narri followed.

The End

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