Back to Misery in Middale! =] Am enjoying writing the bits with Lahsaa a good couple of years before I play him, helps me expand on his backstory a bit... and I enjoy putting my characters through a bit of emotional anguish it has to be said.
It had taken then small group about an hour to make their way back to the apart of the camp where Crow and Addy had been. Crow had insisted, on doing his duty to Kharach, laying the fallen souls to rest and cleansing wide swathes of land where the undead bodies seemed to be concentrated. After trying to save what little scraps and fragments of the souls of the undead that he could, a massive pyre was built and he only allowed himself to be dragged away to their camp to have his wounds looked at when the undead bodies were burning.
It took a further half an hour before Doctor Gretta was satisfied that none of their injuries were likely to become infected and that they would wake with nothing more serious than aches and bruises and - with a last admonishment to Addy for nearly getting herself killed - she finally left, leaving the four alone.
The humans sat opposite the dwarf and the Elf, Addy resting her head on Crow's shoulder, possibly the most exhausted of the lot, unused to fighting for her life.
"I don't think I have thanked you yet." Crow said with a smile, his face free of his mask. "If you hadn't turned up when you had..."
Grakan shrugged. "It were nothin' manling. Yer've done the same for us in the past, and to a creature like that is no way to die. Now come on - what of Mercia and Gregory?"
The Kharachian's eyes flicked between the pair. "Mercia has been taken by Kryganite's. I have no idea how, but they were besieging two walls despite already being inside when we got there - they must just want to cause as much damage as possible. They were not making concentrated efforts against those fleeing more concentrating on getting inside. My brother made for the city to try and evacuate those he could. I haven't heard from him since." Crow frowned as if something suddenly occurred to him. "Speaking of my brother, what has happened to his love? She was supposed to be with you wasn't she?"
Eliana and Grundown exchanged a dark glance before the elf spoke. "Crow... You're not going to like what we have to tell you."
"What on Arda made you think it was a good idea to head towards an attack on the camps?" Tobias raged at Lahsaa, stood before him, head bowed. "And to take the woman with you who we've offered protection with as well? It's..." the merchant growled, pacing back and forth. "It's irresponsible and stupid you stupid child!"
Lahsaa baulked, looking up suddenly at his father. "Father, I'm not a child. I saved the lives of at least half a dozen of the militiamen and we were well away from any of the fighting!"
Tobias glared at his son, straightening up fully. "I don't care what you were doing! You should not be seeking out danger and dragging others with you! Why weren't you here? You should be helping your brothers and the rest of the townsfolk build here! Even if you can't use a hammer without hitting your own fingers you can still hold wood straight at least!"
Lahsaa opened his mouth to protest, but Tobias cut him off. "Not a word! Not one bloody word. Get out of my sight! And tomorrow you will go with your brothers and help people in a practical way, not by getting in the way of people who are actually trained to fight, instead of a wannabe adventurer with a hero complex! Now out! And take that staff of wood with you."
Eyes pricked with tears, Lahsaa turned from his fathers room and stormed out angrily, ignoring Leanna who had been sat in the corridor and heading for the courtyard of the building. Leanna followed him, several paces behind, unsure of what to say as Lahsaa crossed to the middle of the courtyard where there was a large standing stone - writing carved into its face. With a scream of frustration he swung the staff as hard as he could at the rock. The wood cracked loudly while the rock sat there almost mockingly - unmarred. As if this was a cue for, Lahsaa sank to his knees, silent tears streaking down his face.
Leanna approached tentatively, laying a hand on his back as she knelt behind him. "I'm sorry... that was unkind of him. I know I urged you to come away but... You did a brave thing today."
Lahsaa scoffed, looking up at her briefly then down at the two halves of the broken staff. "No, I just got in the way and put your life at risk." he sighed. "I'm sorry. I don't know why I thought I could help you."
Leanna shook her head, catching his chin and pulling it round to look at her. "Don't listen to him. Lahsaa you are a brave man. Not many people would run towards undead armed with just a staff. Even if your father wasn't, I was impressed." she leaned forward and kissed his cheek lightly.
He blushed, unable to look away as she still held his chin. "I didn't do any... I mean anyone would have done it... I'm sure that..." he stammered as Leanna kissed him on the lips. His eyes widened briefly and he pulled away slowly as she did, cheeks burning.
"Don't go bashful on me now Lahsaa. You're a bit of a hero to me right now and I'm still going to need you in two days for this ritual." Leanna smiled, "You do still want to help, right?"
The man nodded, not meeting her eyes, managing to murmur out. "Of course."