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March 26th, 103 CY

We are back home in Oakhurst. Sleep will not come, but this time the cause is a joyous one: Talgen is responding to the golden apple’s magic! Sister Corkie believes that he will fully recover from his transformation, though his road will be a long and painful one. She can do nothing for my eye, to her regret, but I care not. I’ve covered it with a patch that I fashioned from one of the dragon’s scales; let it show the price I paid, and let Wintertide show what it won me.

My appearance startled Sharwyn, as I knew it would, but her joy at her brother’s salvation more than made up for it, as does that of their mother. And Azal is simply over the moon! I’m sure that she will tell Talgen of her true feelings, when he’s well enough to hear it.

And he will be well enough, in time, thanks to Azal, Bhavik, and myself.

I could find a more comfortable place to rest than here at the shrine, but there is no place I would rather be than here with my friends. I know our time together is short.

March 27th

As soon as I awoke, Bhavik bid me farewell. He’s off to learn more about his past, to follow up on what the Great Ulfe told him. I hated to see him go, even though I’d seen it coming… I hope to see him again someday, but Fate wills what it will.

I’ve seen little of Sharwyn, as she’s spent most of the day at House Hucrele. I’m reluctant to call on her there, in case she’s still keeping our relationship a secret from her mother. I suppose it’s given me the chance to make the most of my remaining time with Azal.

March 29th

Talgen has awakened! Though weak, and still more plant than man, he was enough himself to thank us for our efforts. After all these days of fighting for his life, words cannot capture my relief to speak to my friend once more.

But this window will be a brief one. Now that her brother is mending, Sharwyn wishes to return to Brindinford, to resume her studies. Having been gone for six weeks, and in her final year at Zee’s, she can scarcely be blamed. I will escort her back to town, of course, for there is little I can do here. Talgen is in the best of hands; with any luck, he and Azal will return to Brindinford themselves… someday.

Many tearful goodbyes followed. Madame Hucrele acknowledged the spark between her daughter and myself – another relief! This courtship will be difficult enough for me, even without the need to keep it a secret.

April 1st

We should be back in Brindinford tomorrow. Our time on the trail has been peaceful. A good thing, perhaps, for my skill with Wintertide is woeful compared to my abilities with my lost holy healer’s staff.

Sharwyn has seemed a bit distant. Preoccupied with her studies, or her brother’s well-being, perhaps? Or have I changed too much, too quickly for her? I must give her the space that she needs, whatever her cause may be.

April 2nd

Word of my deeds in Khundrukar has reached Brindinford before I did. I’m hailed as “dragonslayer” wherever I go, no matter how I bristle at such an honor. I’m sure I’ll find some way to use it to my advantage.

Sharwyn has already returned to Zee’s – she hopes that fervent devotion to her studies will have her caught up before the Fair begins – but the kiss she gave me before leaving promises that I have not seen the last of her.

As large as this town is – certainly the largest settlement in the Elsir Vale – it seems smaller to me, now. I look forward to getting back to work, though.

April 22nd

Work has kept me busy. I feel like I should write something here, though.

Father Sloane enjoys calling me “dragonslayer” far too much. How many people have ever gone back to digging graves and embalming corpses after slaying dragons, I wonder?

Brother Perceval has been training me in the longsword. I can wield Wintertide one-handed for brief stretches – long enough to cast a spell, anyway. I’m growing accustomed to the frost that forms on my hands, the way the blade hungers for heat. I’m told that it will glow when drawn, if the temperature is low enough; I believe it can even snuff out a fire.

This blade is sacred to my Queen, and I was meant to find it. This is the reason that she sent the raven to me. I must honor her by wielding it.

April 26th

Celeine crosses my mind with less pain these days, and I remember good and bad times in equal measure. My longing for Sharwyn must play a part in this, for I’ve seen little of her, as expected. We agree that meeting at the Stony Gaze is strange without Talgen and Azal there, so we’re casting around for new, more private places. I suspect that I won’t get a proper date out of her until she graduates!

April 30th

The word from Oakhurst is that Talgen can walk now, with aid. Part of me wants to ask if Iva has come home, but I don’t wish to cause any trouble for her. I must let my family remain in my past.

May 11th

Sharwyn’s diligence seems to be paying off – she believes that she’ll be free to take the week off for Fair, as the rest of her classmates already are.

I hope she’s right, for I miss her. And I miss adventuring. Though I know that consoling the bereaved is important work, I now feel that, having the attention of my Queen, and this sacred blade, I’m obligated to make a real difference in the world.

I shall wait for a sign.

May 17th

With only two days left until the Fair begins, Sharwyn has told me that she’ll be free for the week! I’ve sent word to her to meet me in Eastgate on the morning of the 19th.

May 18th

No reply from Sharwyn, but Brindinford is always chaotic at this time of year. I’ll be where I said I’ll be tomorrow, and look for her there.


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