The evil of this place is nearly palpable. Here, in this foul place, we are faced with a powerful servant of Zon Kuthon, the thin tapestry of trust we had formed became unraveled. Laori Vaus has been our ally in the past. She helped us against the Emperor of Old Korvosa, she saved Aubron from the otyugh, and she took care of the artist and got him out of Old Korvosa. On the other hand, Sial provided us with shelter in the Shadowlands. In that balance, my trust is with Laori. The struggle we all knew was coming finally came about. I made my choice.
I avoided Sial’s foul magics as I attempted to remove him from the fray. His chain demon was the primary threat, but she would back off if Sial was in danger. Watching her deadly chains, I missed the foul touch of the death priest. I fought the vile magic coursing through my body. As the darkness encroached around my vision like tenebrous, tendrils the last thing I saw was Sial’s sneering face; and then, darkness.
“No! Irori! Why have you forsaken me!!?!?” I cried out in despair. I thought the sound echoed in the chamber, but it wasn’t my voice. Laori was sacrificing herself to become the new caretaker of the Star Tower. How did we get here?
Escaping the shadow dragon, we entered the actual crypt of the Zon Kutha hold. There were ghosts of the dead priests wandering the halls. We ventured down into the base of the structure and found an ancient, dead creature of power. Sial engaged the creature and they spoke in the guttural tongue of the creatures of the dark. I don’t know what Sial discussed, but we were granted passage to continue. We entered the deep crypt and found the Star Tower caretaker. He barred our passage until one of us agreed to take on the mantle of caretaker.
In a moment of strong character, Edelwulf, volunteered to become the caretaker for all time if he could be reunited with his daughter. I am touched by his willingness to sacrifice and his love for family. I am proud to be one of his many companions. But the caretaker refused. And that is when the dark priests went to war. The chain demon tricked noble Edelwulf into attacking Laori, Reka became a giant beast, and Aidan faded into the shadows. Laori’s fell powers were no match for Edelwulf’s steel and she fell first. Fleeing to accept the caretaker’s offer.
In the aftermath of Laori’s sacrifice, we prepare to move deeper into Scarwall. I sit on the floor, meditating; trying to keep myself from wallowing in despair. A white tiger appeared to me in the darkness. Shining brightly the tiger only looked at me. I pleaded with it for my sight. I begged to be whole again. The tiger just stared. And that was when it occurred to me. I was marred for failing to be perfect. This is my penance for failing to keep my faith strong in the face of a test. I nodded in understanding. The tiger nodded and padded off into the darkness. I could feel the power of Irori washing over me. I will take this test and I will pass it with pride.
Hopping back up to my feet, I nodded to my companions and prepared to proceed. The curse of this place will not defeat me. Irori is my guide now. I will trust in his strength.