Liberty Journal 3

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15 Planting, 595 CY

Dear Connie,

I’ve gone and done it again. I made such a fool of myself last night… I got too drunk and talked to Tirra, and she told me she “isn’t into girls. Anymore.” And I didn’t even say that I was interested in her; it was that obvious. I was so embarrassed! We agreed to be friends anyway, but I bet that it’s going to be weird between us. I mean, part of me keeps saying that she added “Anymore” to give me a glimmer of hope that she might change her mind again. If she knew the things I’d do for her, and to her, she might reconsider…

But that’s Diamond Lake, isn’t it? Hundreds of dirty, hairy miners who don’t know the difference between me and a witch. Their greedy bosses, who’d do absolutely anything for more power and less competition. And a handful of elves and elfbloods who either keep to themselves (like Ellival Moonmeadow’s lot) or have better things to do than get involved with humans (like Benazel and your boss). It’s just another reason to leave Diamond Lake and never look back.

But there’s a problem that my friends and I have to look into before I can even consider it. A chain of events that started in the Whispering Cairn led us to the old observatory, where a necromancer named Filge was animating the dead. And the undead are even worse than I feared… we fought a ghoul in the Cairn, but I didn’t get a good look at it, and the whole thing was over pretty quickly. This was different.

In addition to a little… groundskeeper (?) and some skeleton guards, Filge had some zombies arranged at a table, like there was a fancy, horrible dinner party going on. It turned my stomach, sure, but I was really thrown by the wrongness of the whole scene. Finding remains stolen from consecrated ground for this… mockery really set me on edge. I know we Grace girls aren’t very pious (well, except for Mother, I guess), but those were people, once, and they don’t deserve that! Nobody deserves that. What if it had been Father at that table? I wanted to BURN the man who’d done this, either in the name of justice or vengeance.

I panicked when Mom flew across the room to attack the necromancer after he’d surrendered, because Xan wanted to take Filge alive for questioning, and I’d never seen Mom rage like that before. But I also thought about the common teachings of the gods of good, where mercy is always a virtue, and wrath a sin. Maybe I was worried about Mom, since Kord is good – or maybe I worried about myself.

They managed to keep him from dying, though. We asked him a bunch of questions, then left him tied up for Allustan to find. I’m sure my master will scare him away from Diamond Lake for good, assuming we haven’t already done that, but it really doesn’t sit right with me. I can’t shake the feeling that he’s just going to go do it someplace else.

The worst part was that Filge had no idea he’d done anything wrong.

We learned about a lot of other disturbing things going on in Diamond Lake. I convinced Xan to let me tell Allustan about it, which I never could have done a week ago. I think we’re starting to trust each other… he isn’t quite what I thought he was. And now I feel like I don’t know Mom as well as I thought I did, either. Without Drake around, I’m the one who has to keep the peace between the two, and I’m not sure how I’m going to do that.

I don’t want to talk about the disturbing things we found out in this letter; we’ll discuss it when I see you next. I wonder if it’s related to your problems that you didn’t want to tell me about; I guess I’ll find out soon enough.

All my love,

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Liberty Journal 3

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