We got to the small mountain town that Lux and I had avoided on the way up the mountain and got enough supplies to make it to Ghiklah. We also warned them about the dark elves so they could prepare themselves. We then hurried on to Ghiklah, dragging our prisoner along with us. When we got to town, there was a dwarven merchant caravan that had stopped while passing through. Merlynn sold our loot we had acquired and divvied up the largest sum of coins I'd ever seen in one place. We then explored the caravan, looking for new gear to help us out, since we knew we still had a score to settle with Jak. We nearly forgot we were still dragging this trussed up cave elf, leading him along by a rope like some kind of pet. In hindsight, it explains all the strange looks we were getting. I found an enchanted amulet that attracted my attention. A small fist fashioned of iron, with an unnatural aura of cold. I was told it would freeze opponents of unarmed attacks, or the natural attacks of a beast. I figured it would work with my arm spines as well. If I'm going to be using this new found power, I can't be half-assing it. The sooner I drop a foe and end a fight, the less time there is for me to loose control.
Not long after this, we were met by a Sergeant Ancin of the Algorethi army unit stationed here acting as local law enforcement. Apparently my new friends had been sent by the Sergeant or Captain, I'm not sure on the details, to track down Jak and they wanted a report. This worked out, as we were looking to rid ourselves of our prisoner. Merlynn, Farnam and I were led into the office of one Captain Thelmar. I let Merlynn do most of the talking, as I felt I didn't really belong here, as I wasn't around when they got their mission. Also, I haven't always had a good relationship with the soldiers of Regar's army, as evidenced by my intimate knowledge of their boot tread. I did add a few details here or there that I felt were missing, but otherwise kept silent. Towards the end of the conversation, it looked like the Captain was blaming us for opening the door to the dwarven ruins, allowing the dark elf army easy access to the surface. This rankled me, as this guy sent my friends to find Jak, so they wouldn't have been there in the first place otherwise. Besides, we had know way of knowing we were playing into Jak's plan. Even though Thelmar was over all friendly and his accusations somewhat veiled, I had to choke back the urge to rip his throat out.
On the way out, we passed a group of officers heading in to talk to the Captain. One of them caught my eye. I didn't recognize his face, but his build and and walk reminded me of the man from the ruins I was certain had been Jak. He saw us looking at him, and smiled and winked at us. The backs of my forearms itched, and I yet again had to resist the urge to attack someone. Even if this was Jak, we had no proof and transforming into a monster in the middle of an army and attacking an officer was not conducive to a long life. We did mention our suspicions to Sergeant Ancin, and asked him to look into it. That was the best we could do for now.
On the way out of the camp, we met an attractive elven woman calling herself Dove, who seemed to know Merlynn and Farnam. She also implied she knew something about Lux and me, which was disconcerting. She set up a dinner meeting with the group for later that night. Turns out she had worked for Jak, but disagreed with his methods. She wanted us to help her search a hideout the had used in the past. It seemed she wanted to be in charge of the crime in the city. Merlynn was reluctant to be used by a criminal organization, and Dove tried to convince him that she was a less bloodthirsty and destructive element than Jak's bandits, the evil you know yada yada. I mentioned that we were already being used by Jak and Captain Thelmar. Dove mentioned that at least she was being up front about using us. And at this point, I was willing to side with anyone against Jak. I really hate that guy. I want to feel his entrails slide through my fingers, hear the snapping of his bones, and taste his blo… uh, anyway. Moving on.
During the trek to Ghiklah, Lux and I had a few private conversations and decided to tell our friends the truth. After dinner with Dove, we went to a manor house on the edge of town that the group had found a deed to and claimed in some of their previous escapades. After settling in, I told them everything. Told them we we weren't really looking for an uncle, but a little brother. I explained that we weren't sure we could trust them at first, and figured it would be easier to claim he was our uncle than to explain the fact that Lux and I look like we are in our early 20's but are actually 64 years old. I told them why I had been so reluctant to fight before. I explained that, when I was younger, I lived in an orphanage and was an outcaste. In addition to my glowing red eyes and horns, I had a tail. Children can be cruel, and I was bullied and teased relentlessly. The headmaster would never defend me, and indeed, I was blamed for any altercations started by the other kids while being reminded constantly how lucky I was to be there. It came to a head one day, when several of the older boys decided to help me "fit in". They cornered me and pinned me down. Using an old rusty hatchet, they chopped my tail off, laughing cruelly the whole time. That was when the darkness first struck. That was the first time my arms sprouted blade like spines. That was the first time I killed. I slaughtered the boys before they knew what was happening, then stalked through the orphanage killing everyone I found until I finally passed out. I awoke later and was chased out of town by I mob of villagers calling me a monster. I had been on my own ever since, until Lux found me.
Merlynn thought that there must have been some kind of supernatural being in our family history, probably many generations ago, though he couldn't guess as to what kind of being. Farnam tried to tell me that even if there was the blood of some evil being in my family's past, that didn't mean that I was evil. I appreciated the sentiment, but I wasn't sure I believed him. I still have the dark thoughts and even though now I seem to have better control of it, I might still loose control one day. It seems inevitable, really.