17th of August, 9:42 Dragon
We had a couple of pleasant surprises waiting for us back in Aneth Ara. First off, Enna’s back! It seems whatever business caused her to run off has been concluded, so she’s ready to rejoin our merry band. We’ve had a few other shakeups in the party roster, as well: Veto is staying at the Denerim chantry in order to become a Templar, and Tracii has apparently decided to become Thedas’s first Tal-Vashoth Circle mage, but we’ve acquired another elf mage named Sona to make up for it. Secondly, in gratitude for what we’ve done for the town, the folk of Aneth Ara have built us all houses surrounding the main square. Even Legnar got a new house, and as he was quick to point out, he’s only been in town for about an hour up ‘til now! Nevertheless, he seemed right tickled to have a proper place to hang his hat up; I get the sense that Legnar hasn’t had anything that could be called a “home” for quite some time. Me, I wasted no time getting myself, Elly, and Morgan set up in one of the houses. Elly immediately set about making the place more homey, while Morgan got back to the important business of practicing hitting things with other things.
The third pleasant surprise was that Azrael is actually in town at the moment, and we all got rewarded pretty handsomely for the godsawful slog we’ve had to deal with over the past several weeks. In addition to the gold, Azrael had picked up some useful trinkets and baubles for all of us. In my case, I received a defensive crossbar to mount on my lance, which will help keep folk that want to stab me a bit further away — always a good thing! (We also got to see the look on Emery’s face when we handed the shadow moss that had been “burned in the fire” to Azrael, which was good for a laugh.) Azrael’s still working out the details of where we’re headed next; the pointy bastard STILL won’t tell us what we’re after in Orlais, but apparently he’s found something else for us to hunt down in the Anderfels, and has a lead on ANOTHER trinket that’s apparently serving as the prize for the Grand Tourney back in the Free Marches. Looks like we have a proper world tour ahead of us in the future! I’ll have to have a good long talk with Elly and Morgan and figure out how that’s going to work.
Speaking of Elly and Morgan, I got back from the team meeting with Azrael to see the former making dinner and the latter practicing sword swings with a stick. As mentioned previously, I think it’s time the boy learned how to swing a sword for real, so I lent him my bastard sword for a bit and showed him how to use it properly. To his credit, he managed to not chop any of his own bits off, which is probably better than I would have done at his age. Our training was soon interrupted by a festival starting in the town square, however, which is apparently a pretty common occurrence these days. It’s been far too long since our lot have had the chance to properly unwind, so we all decided to head out and join in the festivities.
To be honest, a decent chunk of what happened that evening has vanished into an alcoholic haze. I remember Elly and I dancing like fools, and Morgan making an arse of himself with a pretty elf girl, which was hopefully a good learning experience for him at least. I think the rest of my team got even more pickled than I did, and I’m pretty sure folk were doodling obscene cartoons on each other’s faces by the end of the night. Still, it was a great time all told, and a much-needed reprieve from all the horseshit we’ve had shoveled on us these past few weeks.
… Not going to lie, it’s going to be damn hard to pick up and head out again on another of Azrael’s fool quests, especially if this one’s going to be taking us across the whole damn continent and back again. I’ve said it before, yeah? That the point of all this wandering was to find something worth settling down for? In this town, with these people and this family, I think I might have found it.