Santos's Journal - Year 14
My messages and ravens to find the whereabouts of Father Liam have failed. No one seems to know where he has gone. Liora, the young girl saved from the Reckoning and now on her way to becoming a fantastic Templar candidate could not get me any more information. It was over eight years ago though, nine now I suppose. I have been here that long haven’t? Fourteen years. I keep hoping that my ventures out of the Temple will lead me closer to something to investigate, but there is never anything. There is hardly trouble in the outskirts of Wyldshire, most things evil know it is not a place to tread. Nothing nearly as gruesome as that day in my Melan, or even as odd as the night in Greenling Forest outside of Goud.I am called to meet with ArchbishopRuger now and again, talking about his plans for Majeria, his responsibilities as Archbishop and that I will be a leader of the people of Majeria along with him. It hardly feels like the case when my travels do seem so mundane. I suppose though that mundane is better than harrowing darkness all over the land. When I am back at the Temple, Liora, more than any pupil seeks my counsel, which is odd, since I am no Templar. I think perhaps she misses the life she once held in becoming a Lightbearer. To be a thief, then an acolyte, and now a warrior. I have only been one thing my whole life as far as I can remember. I have been a servant of the light more time than I have just being a normal man. What is this feeling of drive that I cannot shake? I cannot stay in this Temple forever.
Liora has become a permanent resident in my mind. It is quite…vexing actually. I know there is nothing against such relationships, after all, Light himself is married to Shadow. However I understand why such attachments are discouraged. I find it harder to study. She encourages me to use the dungeons under the temple with her to keep my skills sharp, and I must say I am now more formidable while fighting next to her, but I am nowhere near her prowess. The dungeon under the Temple is also much more intense than I remember the monastery’s was. It is a temptation that has caught the eye of even the council I am a part of as they mention that such infatuations are a distraction from my station at the Temple. I of course relate that she is no longer an acolyte, however, I know that it is not the place of those in charge to seek the attentions of those who are not. Her presence is intoxicating, and yet I only feel more clear minded. It has been a great joy to watch Liora grow as a warrior, and under the tutelage of Maulik no doubt. He says she has a Dwarven spirit, which I have been led to believe is quite the compliment for a non-Dwarf. She will be undergoing her own trials soon. Hopefully the trials of the Templar will be more suited to Liora’s skill set than the Reckoning would have been.To watch her fight is a thing of beauty, raw in its power, and perfect in its precision. I must find a way to quell these desires or I will think of nothing else.
It is interesting to me, being on the council now, seeing the acolytes brought before us and how young many of them are. I remember I arrived at ten, and there were few younger members than myself. Now, there are children at the age of five. I actually envy them quite a bit as they never knew a family well enough to lose them. Attachment is a dangerous vice to have, and once Majerians lived through the Mage Rebellion, they were desperate to hold onto the things and people they still had. If I had never known my mother and father, I never would have never had the nightmares I did upon seeing their mutilation and destruction. I see families in Wyldshire, happy, and I remember that is how I was. Memories are hard to remember, but feeling never pass. Luckily for these young acolytes, the love they will know is from Light, a love that cannot be taken away, a love that only makes you stronger. I am aware that many villagers and even citizens in Wyldshire believe we are just harvesting children for Light, but we are giving them a life beyond poverty and sadness. I remember that is why my father gave me up. The Order gave me a better life. If I had not gone, I would have ended like the rest of the people in Melan. The image of that cradle still vexes me.
I was invited to a private event by the Archbishop today. He saved me again, or rather taught me a very dangerous lesson. They had captured a Mage, very close to Wyldshire. I first must say he was foolish for even living around these parts. However, the tortures I witnessed were unlike anything I have seen even in the dungeons of the monastery as a boy. Some things even more frightening than my Reckoning. The Mage gave up many of his friends, and when he was asked whether he would serve a major city in Majeria to rebuild with the Essence the Mage chose death. He said he would rather die than live a slave. I felt like pleading with him, but none of the other Clerics seemed to give it a thought and quickly ended his life. The Archbishop surprisingly called me into his chambers to talk about the incident. He said he could feel that I was not pleased with the proceedings. I explained that I didn’t think torture and murder were correct tenants of Light. He said “My boy, if we had let that Mage loose he would have gone for your gullet right then and there. This is not to frighten you my boy, but inform you. Mages are dangerously unpredictable, they have no moral compass.” I argued that we cannot judge every man as evil if we hope to cleanse the world through peace and the Tenants of Light. The Archbishop nodded, but not as if he agreed. I realize I must have overstepped my station with my familiarity with the Archbishop. He led me down into a prison cell where there was another Mage, chained and gagged, unable to produce magic without physical or verbal qualities, he also seemed quite sedated. Ruger ushered me in, and I felt the presence of energy around him with Ruger explained kept him docile. Ruger muttered a word and suddenly the energy was gone and the mage lunged at me. I told Ruger I understood, and he said “No, I don’t think you do.” He unchained the Mage and before I could raise any sort of defense I felt a fire burning inside of me, like a poison. I dropped to my knees and just as the Mage crashed down with a bony long nailed claw, he was shoved back into the wall, chained, and sedated again. Ruger helped me up, and with a press of his hand to my forehead the pain was gone. He looked me in the eyes with that icy stare he has always had, especially when he was a Primate, “Does that seem like a man looking for salvation Santos?”
I received a message today from an individual simply named L. It is perplexing. I would say I could know, but I have known too many Ls who have been kind to me. Father Liam, Prefect Leoht, and now Liora as well. It couldn’t be Liora, since it spoke of being away for a long while, and she brought me the letter herself. The simplest way of the letter said that I would see them again, when I did not expect it, and perhaps not in a form I recognized. Although it might seem a bit foreboding, I found great comfort in it; one or both of my old masters must still be alive, and what’s more, I would see them again. Hardly a promise that could be kept through sheer will, but if anyone was capable, it was Father Liam and Prefect Leoht. I shared my excitement with Liora, and she said that we should celebrate in the town tonight. I reluctantly agreed, as there was little frivolity I was allowed to take place in. Liora on the other hand could always be found in a tavern, singing, dancing, and drinking. In truth I believe she went simply to break up bar fights because it gave her a reason to use her training. She has been brought before my minor council many times for her aggressive behavior, but since she is now a member of the Templars, our words are only recommendation, and I am careful to be very silent in those meetings. I am off to town to celebrate.
Liora has left the Temple. She was recently assigned a post in the South. The sudden transfer seemed strange, but there have been reports of stirrings in the South, more and more undead rising. After the night in town, it was heartbreaking to see her go, and to know that she would be moving from location to location, and even worse among possible Necromancers. If the same fate befell her, I would never be able to cope. The only saving grace is that it is Maulik’s unit. He will be sure he protects her, I had him swear on it. The goodbye was tender, but nothing ever expressed, only eyes. Never a kiss, we couldn’t, not at the Temple, I could only look into her eyes with an unspoken desire, a look that thankfully I could see reciprocated in her eyes as well. Before she left she handed me a ring with wings on it. She told me that when she was with me, she always felt like she could fly. I WILL see her again, my mind, body, and soul belong to the church, but I will see her again I swear it.