Until Thy Kingdom Come
Puncher of Dragons. Succubus Grappler.
A lank man of ropy muscle, hollow blue-gray eyes with a feverish cast, and long lank black hair. A pack rests on his back with a short fishing pole strapped to the top and a blanket rolled tight along the bottom. A loose gray robe hangs limp on his shoulders with his legs are clad in simple leather breeches. A faint dusting of chalk lies on his calloused fingertips. Linen bandages are wrapped a few layers deep around the back of each hand from knuckles to wrist. A silk rope, grayed from use, rests on a hook from his belt. His feet are wrapped in a handful of soft leather straps around the heel and ball.
He moves with practiced precision even in the most mundane of times always striving to remain silent in speech and movement, his gaze twitching from one sight to the next.
A slight smile is quick to his lips pulling at the loose catgut stitching binding them. A tattoo of an Ouroboros marks his tongue.
A tall wiry man in loose fitting robes sits on a large flat rock along the river’s edge. He unhooks a just caught trout and releases it back into the cold flowing waters. A slight smile creases his lips and pulls the catgut stitching that crisscrosses his mouth as he sets the simple fishing pole down and reaches for a small leatherbound book out of his backpack. A small bottle of ink appears in his hand from one of the many compartments sewn into his robe, another practiced motion and a pen appears in the other. A few moments later he begins to write.
“My brothers tell me I was born beneath the gallow tree along the shore of Lake Kavapesta. That is all I have been told concerning that matter. As far back as my memory reaches I had been at the Monastery of the Silent Veil located high in the mountains of the province of Ulcazar in the Grand Principality of Ustalav. For many years I lived and trained with my brothers, honing mind and body to protect the wisdom housed within the high monastery walls. Each person, creature, and god has a place ordained by the Universe. Mine I had thought was the monastery. I was wrong.
The wind was blowing fierce off the high peaks the day I saw the shadow of the Truth. I must have lost my way in the blowing snow even though I had walked the same path many times over the years. Fate is fate. Questioning it now…Brother Markov would not be amused.
A particularly violent gust of wind forced me to seek shelter in one of the many tunnels of the monastery that riddle its mountain fastness. I was not familiar with this place and could not orient myself due to the blizzard. It was freezing and I moved further back into the tunnel to escape the biting wind.
It was there I found the door. I could feel the pressure of its age. Everything in existence has a spirit, a presence, and this one was strange and patient. It opened easily. If there once was a lock it had long since rusted away in the damp air.
An eruption of books and scrolls filled the shelves carved into the rock. Brother Yuri would have clapped for joy at such a find. I could imagine the itch his fingers would feel to categorize the riot of works in the room.
One was meant for me. I could not have left without reading anymore than the Sun would stop at midday and retrace its steps across the sky. Truths I should not know but must know were made known to me. The pages crumbling to dust as I devoured the contents.
I came to later, apparently days later on the floor of my sleeping cell. All knowledge has a price and I must pay mine. So I will not taint others with what I have learned I have taken the Vow of Silence. Brother Yuri tattooed the mark upon my tongue. I sewed my own lips so that the Vow was taken within the self and outside the self as it is written.
Food has turned to ash in my mouth a price the Universe demands. I have taken the Vow of Fasting in penance for the hunger I showed to know.
Knowing the Truth I must speak the truth and so I have taken the Vow of Truth as the Universe demands.
Twice cursed my brothers called me as they expelled me from the only home I ever knew. But my service has not and can not end.
Everything has it’s place and purpose. It is known I will find mine. I will help others find theirs for the Truth is not only suffering but harmony."
Later somewhere in the Riverlands:
There is quite the interesting character at the Briar Inn. He appears different as if he were not fully human. Perhaps the tales of elves were true. Some creature of himself and the spirit accompanies him. From his talk with another of the patrons he is searching for a place, he has a vision. Perhaps I can help him find it and maybe that will help me find my own.
A wiry man walks over. A piece of chalk in one hand and book sized piece of slate in the other. He writes upon it and hands it to the talkative one.
“Greetings. My name is Ilya Novikoff monk of the Silent Veil. I would like to help you find what you seek.”