Bits from the book . . .

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We found Chief Kudon the Wise’s house without much trouble. It was a towering fortress of stone that protruded out of the mountain as if trying to break free. At first things seemed to be working toward a good outcome. We requested an audience with the Chief, in the hope of finding Monnel, and were escorted by a brute of a Turonian without the need for further explanation. All seemed well.

As we entered a large room, my eyes fixated on the thoroughly intimidating figure who occupied the Chief’s seat. Scattered about him were six heavily armed Turonians. Our escort grunted for us to stay put before speaking to the figure in muted tones. For an ally the Chief didn’t seem overly friendly. Amusement played on his face and an air of entitlement clung to him as he motioned for us to approach.

“You are friends of Chief Kudon the Wise?”

We gave a respectful bow before Jakail spoke. “We are strangers here, looking for a friend. We were led to understand that you are an ally.”

“So, you are indeed friends of Chief Kudon.”

“We are mere strangers in search of a friend.”

“You will find no friends here.” His voice was deep, his eyes soulless. The grey of his skin glimmered with a blue-ish hue where his bulky stomach hung over his pants in a crinkled mass.

“How rude of me, I forgot the introductions, I am Rusadd,” the Turonian said. “I regret that Chief Kudon can’t be here to greet you. He’s…well, he’s somewhat dead.” Rusadd chuckled as if he found the words amusing.

“Of course he didn’t volunteer for that position. We thought it suited him better than this here Seat.” Folding his arms across his chest he stared at Jakail. “Your turn.”

Jakail’s eyes narrowed as he spoke, “We are travelers visiting Turonia. Our friend came to present himself to Chief Kudon, as is the agreement.”

“Liar!” Rusadd’s voice boomeranged across the room.

As the others closed in on us, Jakail and I both reached for our weapons.

“Don’t be foolish!” The self-appointed Chief leaned forward. “Look.”

Following his gaze to the ceiling, we saw at least another half dozen Turonians aiming their arrows at us.

I was grabbed from behind, a dagger against my throat, while they dragged Jakail away. That was the last time I saw him.

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