Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Lum, prologue

I stride to the top of the hill. It is a big hill, high in the daylight. It looks over the tree tops, and I stand at the crest to look over them too. I see for leagues. An ocean of green, like my eyes are green. Not my grey ocean at all.

I miss my ocean, the salt air. The birds of the north. The hunting and fishing I also miss. I think on my brothers, even now at war with the Bringers of Fire. We are Warders of Silver, and we have no love for their evil ways.

A bird flies from a maple before me, and I watch it rise. It leaves its roost, just as I left mine. I left my love, who I will marry at Wintersun. She will bear fine sons for the Tribe.

I am not smart, but I like to watch and to think. I am strong of arm and heart. To me, the heavy morningstar, carved from a tusk, on my hip is no harder to lift and swing than a twig is to a child. I once upended a horse to strike its rider. The horse lived. The rider did not.

The wind moves my kilt, and my dark hair. I lift a mug of ale to my lips, and drink deep. It is my favorite mug, reinforced with iron bands for smashing goblin faces. Sometimes I use it, sometimes the tusk morningstar. The ivory is magicked with fire. Sometimes in battle, I use the great axe on my pack. I know each of these weapons, they are long companions. I carry a small battering ram strapped to my pack, too. It is no burden. I have sieged before, it is strong like me. It breaks doors, I break faces.

I let my hand touch the skinning knife on my belt. It is crystal. It has always been with me. It always returns to me. It is a riddle, and I hate riddles. But it is my riddle, the one the Dragonspeaker gave me.

“Go forth in the world” he said. “Go and share your gift with those not of the Tribes. It is with them your riddle will know an answer. The riddle of crystal is yours to solve, Lum.” And so I go.

The Dragonspeaker has spoken, and the voice of the dragons is his. We hold the dragons on high, for we are their divine children. We of the Warders of Silver are blessed with the Touch of Silver. They call us “Shifters”. I walk closely with the Beast, and you can see the Beast without when I call it. That is when my foes tremble. That is when I send them to their ancestors.

They call me a Barbarian, a Berserker. They are right. I can call the rage, and fight on through what would kill others. I fight with my ancestors’ strength when I rage.

I watch over the ocean of green as the bird returns. It is a blackbird, and it sings a song of spring. I take another pull of my ale, and feel its coolness dive to my belly. It is time to stretch, and I place my giant mug on the ground.

I stretch, axe in hand. I work, practicing strikes and parries. Swing for the head. Block. Chop the kneecap. Parry. Step right, slice with a backhand. Kick and step through.

I work until the muscles are loose, until the sweat beads on my body. I think on my path to this place. I may not be smart, but I can think about my path, and learn from my steps. That is how we become wise, the Dragonspeaker tells me. I need not be quick of thought, if I am willing to think long on a puzzle. I am Lumfarangdelarukh, of the Warders of Silver. I am called Lum by those who would speak of me.

Such is Lum's voice. Simple, but not boring. He can use some big words, he just takes his time getting to them.

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