Author Topic: An awkward exchange  (Read 130 times)


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An awkward exchange
« on: April 04, 2019, 02:14:11 PM »
In a quiet corner of the Copper Dragon sits a moderately disfigured and scarred orc.  He stares at a blank sheaf of papers covered in marks.  Some would charitably call them "words".  He occasionally jabs at one with a stick of charcoal, adding more marks.  He is clearly trying very hard to do something but isn't quite grasping it.  He occasionally roars in frustration and pounds the table before stomping off to buy more paper.  He's attracting attention from around the bar but definitely not assistance.

The following text has been edited to remove the worst of the spelling errors, grammatical atrocities and unsettling stains.

Dear mother and father.

I don't think you can read this.  I don't think you can read but I think you can't read this because you are dead.  I am sorry that you are dead.  I have been practicing my letters every day and am getting quite good.  I have been practicing my Common too but I am not yet so good at Common.  Orc is easy to talk in but not so good to write in.  Don't think I'm ready to write in Common yet.

I have turned my back on the way of Gruumsh.  He was not a good god and Jiro told me it was bad to do things because he shouted at me.  Jiro was right.  I am looking for a god who will better accept me for who I am and what I can offer.  I am not sure who that is yet but I am sure that the correct choice will make itself known to me in time.  The priests say that the gods have mysterious ways.  I don't know what that means.  Gruumsh always had really straightforward ways.

Now he is gone, I hope you are in a better place.  I hope you are in any place, really.  I hope you didn't get sent somewhere bad when your god went away.

Tung can't send this to you.  Don't think post person goes to where you are.  Well... maybe Tung could give letter to post person and then Tung could kill post person... no.  That is stupid idea.  Tung will hold on to it, give it to you when he dies.  Maybe Tung will go to the same place.  That would be nice.

Tung miss you, mother.  Tung miss you, father.  Miss the others too.  Tung will do his best for you.  Better than he did for bad, gone Gruumsh.

Later now, up on Chopper's Isle.  Tung sits and meditates.  Like the last time, he feels peaceful and also like the last time, something is preying on his mind but without the same dread as before.  He no longer hears the voice in his head urging him to further and further violence, he is beginning to feel happier and more confident in himself.  So he sits and he waits.  Open your heart, they said, and the right god will find you.  A lot of thoughts are running through his head.  They're hard to control.  He imagines violence and bloodshed.  Not that uncommon, really, it comes with the rage.  Part of the price to pay for the power, maybe.  But there's something else, now.  He feels an urge not to kill, not like Gruumsh wanted him to, but to fight.  To win.  Death is simply a means to an end but that end goal is conquest.  Success.  Might, not as a tool to destroy but to assert.  He feels something touch his back.  He reaches around with some difficulty and when he withdraws his hand, it's bright red and wet.  He does not notice any pain, no wounds.  Serrated Fang, his unimaginatively named axe, is dripping with blood.  Tung is certain that he cleaned it recently.

A name resonates in his mind.  Gorum.

Tung... does not know the proper way to talk to a god.  Tung is sorry.  Tung will learn if Tung meets priest of... Gorum?  Is you Gorum?  That is good name.  Sound bit like orc name.  Does you speak orc?

Tung waits for a moment.  It becomes obvious that the incredibly personal service he is used to receiving from his god can't be expected from a major deity.

Maybe you does.  Maybe you doesn't.  Tung will pray in Common.  Tung is sorry, Common is not good language for Tung.  Tung's mouth does not like the words, finds them hard.  Tung will try.

Tung fighter.  Barbarian fighter.  Tung hits things until they don't hit back and when things keep hitting back very well, Tung gets cross and bites them.

Tung worshipped Gruumsh before.  Maybe you know Gruumsh.  Is you one of the... om... ni... one of the gods what knows all there is to know?  Gruumsh said he was.  Lied.  Maybe you is.  You probably weren't friends, Gruumsh didn't like friends.  I hear a lot about you, though!  God of combat, yeah?  Tung like that.  Combat is what Tung does.  Combat and learning things, Tung likes that.  Tung would be happy to fight for Gorum if Gorum would have Tung.  Tung do some bad things.  Maybe Gorum will have to forgive some of them.  Tung deserve punishment for some of them but tries to be better, now.  Jiro helps with that.

Tung has lots of friends who fight with him.  Please look after them; they all good people.  They not good fighters like Tung is but they fight in other ways which are also good.  I seen picture of you, you look like big empty living armour.  Maybe you similar sort of thing to Samatha.  She big empty girl who good fighter.  She frightening.  She get worse every passing day.  You maybe know Jiro already because he died one time but came back so he probably seen you in afterlife.  He nice.  Thinks about stuff a lot.  Garren is also nice.  Talks to Tung lots.  Gets almost as angry as Tung does.  He... social outcast like orc are, we have lots in common.  Beshka is like child human but is not child.  She do magic.  Not stupid wizard magic, earth magic.  Better magic.  She keep bird that like god of birds.  Big, angry bird.  Icarus.  Icarus talk lots too; they pretty good for a bird!  Fripflop is frog but not frog.  Talking frog.  Dunno how, maybe magic make him talk.  Strange frog.  Good friend, thoughtful about pretty things.  Samantha either his wife or his daughter or his pet or all three.  Dunno about Sabina.  Sabina contains a few people, don't think Tung trusts any of them.  They fight good with bow like elf would but they tricky.  Fine for now, though.  Bodger... bodger would make good barbarian.  Bodger is dangerous, dangerous thing.  Don't know about their pet.  Bodger likes skin but not when it's attached to living stuff.  Don't know how Beshka feels about that, Beshka likes things to have skin on them.

Tung is on long, noble quest to kill goblins what threaten safety of town of Sandpoint.  Sandpoint people are good and help Tung and his friends.  Friends think we trying to find runelords.  Don't know about that.  We found out some things about them but they seem like they dead now.  Goblins are bigger threat.  Goblins are bad news for good people, that's why Tung kills them.  Not good for fighting, too weak, but okay for eating.

Investigating murder right now.  Bit complicated.  Think magic involved so ain't no understanding anything because magic not something we can understand.  All lights and then boom, your friend is in 20 pieces.  Magic not good.  Tung know about magic.

Hope Gorum don't mind prayers.  Must seem like small thoughts compared to all the thoughts Gorum must listen to.  If Gorum offers guidance, Tung will obey.  Tung ready for better new start.

Tung thank Gorum for listening.
I can still tend the rabbits, George?