Chronicles of Draezoln

Tales of the world of Draezoln

Category Archives: Book 3 Chapter 15

Chapter 15-4

Silence met Almonihah’s statement. At last, one of the archmagi said, “That’s insane! No one has lived to reach the Maelstrom!”

“I did,” Almonihah growled. “Lived t’ come back, too. I was alone then. Better chance with a group.”

There was another long pause after this. “Well, I suppose that makes you the only qualified guide in the world, then,” another of the archmagi commented at last.

The head archmage spoke at last. “We will give you what support we can. Recent events have proven amply that this Amulet is too dangerous to retain, and too hazardous to our world to let go. If you can destroy it, it is in our interests to aid you in doing so. What will you need?”

Almonihah thought for a moment. “Food ‘nd water are th’ big things. Can’t eat or drink anything out there. Hard t’ carry enough with us, though.”

“That, I believe we can aid with,” another archmage stated.

The discussion then turned to the logistics of their journey to come. Gradually, they created a plan… but it was a plan that would take days to prepare. Days to enchant bags to be capable of holding enough food for the journey for two half-dragons and (especially) one giant griffon. Days to devise some sort of enchanted container that would restrict the Amulet’s power to attract Javni’Tolkhrah.

Days for Almonihah and Zakhin’Dakh to be very, very, bored. At the least, that was what they feared. For his part Garkhen looked forward to browsing the unrestricted sections of the Mage’s Guild library. But neither the Ranger nor the griffon were particularly interested in such activities.

It was here that Mage-Archivist Delanoche suggested telling their story. Somewhat to Garkhen’s surprise, Almonihah agreed (Zakhin’Dakh’s agreement was immediate and enthusiastic). And so it was that the three friends sat together for the better portion of most days, speaking with the Mage-Archivist, telling the story of how they had gotten to this point.

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A short post, but hey, a post! I often struggle with these ‘connective’ sections–the ones that explain how the protagonists got from one plot point to another. I guess maybe I could gloss over it more than I do, but I think I already do so plenty.

Also, yes, this is when most of the story was written in-universe. There will be a quick note of that from the Mage-Archivist in the next post, and then I’ll drop the pretense of a frame story entirely.

Chapter 15-3

It took them days of research to make headway. The first tantalizing hints were just that—hints. Oblique mentions of some past horror involving the Javni’Tolkhrah, but never anything clear. It was as if there was some agreement between the authors not to speak of the subject more.

It was Garkhen who at last stumbled upon a hint. Theorizing that, if there were indeed some agreement to banish all memory of something, it was more likely to have happened later rather than sooner, he had gone to some of the oldest-looking books on the shelf and started reading them carefully.

He frowned as he ran across one passage in particular. The Warder re-read it a couple of times, then looked up at his friends. “Look here. I believe I have found something.”

Almonihah, who had been focusing more on teaching Zakhin’Dakh to read than actually reading himself, looked up. “What?”

“This passage mentions a “Chainer” in connection with the Javni’Tolkhrah. It sounds possible, does it not?”

Almonihah grunted. “Were chains all over th’ Amulet,” he admitted, cautiously. “What’s it say?”

“Simply that ‘Since the Chainer’s death, the Chaos Mages have never again so threatened our world.’ From there it goes on to discuss the hunting of Chaos Mages,” Garkhen stated, a hint of disapproval in his tone.

“Hm. ‘Least it’s something,” Almonihah replied, not sounding very impressed. He looked over at the Mage-Archivist. “Chainer mean anything to you?”

Mage-Archivist Delanoche frowned. “Chainer… Chainer… Let me see…” He went over to another set of shelves in the room and started looking over the books there. After a long moment he pulled one off and opened it, flipping through.

“Ah, here it is,” He declared after several minutes of searching. “This passage discusses the summoning of Chaos Beasts, as practiced by ‘The Chainer’.”

Garkhen looked up at the Mage-Archivist, an unasked question in his gaze. After a moment, he asked, instead of the question on his mind, “What does it say of him?”

Mage-Archivist Delanoche scanned a couple of pages. “That the author’s opinion is that The Chainer bound existing Chaos Beasts to his will rather than summoning them. This is a book on summoning, you see.”

“Does it say anything about the Amulet?” Garkhen asked, gazing intently at the book.

After several minutes he shook his head. “No. He says nothing of relevance to our problem. Simply his reasons for why he believes what he does, none of which mention any artifacts.”

The group was silent for a moment, until Garkhen stated, “That does, at least, seem to confirm this Chainer is related to this subject, for the Amulet seems to have power over the Javni’Tolkhrah…”

“So we have a name t’ look for,” Almonihah finished, when Garkhen trailed off. “Something, I suppose.” After a moment he narrowed his eyes. “Something in here on ancient wars?”


There were, indeed, books on ancient wars, which led to books on war magic, and so on through many subjects. Slowly they were able to piece together a picture of the Chainer.

“To summarize what we have found,” Garkhen said a few days later, as they stood again before the remaining Archmagi, “This Chainer found some way to bind Javni’Tolkhrah to his will. If anyone knew it was this Amulet, there are no records here we can find of it. It seems that he used this power to wage a terrible war on one of the early human kingdoms, nearly overcoming it before they were saved by the intervention of the dwarves.”

“After which everybody decided t’ hush up about th’ whole thing,” Almonihah interjected. “Probably didn’t want anyone else getting ideas.”

“Unfortunately, as none of them mention the Amulet, we are left without definite word on how it might be destroyed,” Garkhen continued. “However…” He hesitated. “The records do mention that they had discovered the Javni’Tolkhrah chafed against their master’s power, for Chaos is ever ill-suited to servitude…”

“So our best guess’s that enough Chaos’d break it,” Almonihah finished. He growled a bit at the thought, but after a moment of displeasure, he added, “’nd if there’s enough Chaos anywhere, it’s probably in th’ Maelstrom.” 

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Apologies for the unplanned hiatus. Holiday time can be like that. It didn’t help that I was debating on just how to do a library scene.

Chapter 15-1

Chapter 15: Seeking Chaos’s End

“It is true that evil itself is never truly defeated. At the least, it will not be so long as selfishness and hatred dwell in the hearts of men. But individual evils can be stopped, destructive beings turned from their course or, if needs be, slain.”

“It is… rather like a garden, I would suppose. Weeds will ever spring up, but so long as effort is put into exterminating them, one can still grow a good crop. So, too, must constant effort be put into curbing and reversing the growth of evil, lest it destroy everything of beauty and goodness.” –Garkhen

It took days for Zakhin’Dakh and Garkhen to be recovered enough to consider their next moves—days which Almonihah spent anxiously pacing around the Mage’s Guild, watching for any signs of further attempts to steal the Amulet. He saw none, and each day it was returned safely to his keeping, but this hardly soothed the Ranger’s nerves.

Nor did the wizards’ discoveries do anything to calm him or his friends. In their studies, they found it was not simply a potent artifact of Chaos… but rather a potent artifact of controlling Chaos. How it worked they could not say, nor how the chaos mages had known of it, but they were able to divine that it was capable of bending the wills of Madness-Touched creatures to the bearer’s commands… and that it had a dangerous will of its own.

It was clear to all that it had to be destroyed… but equally clear that such a task would be far from easy. By the time Garkhen had recovered from once again overextending himself, they still knew nothing of how it might be destroyed.

“Perhaps if we knew something of its history, we might guess at a method of destruction?” He suggested as he and Almonihah met once again with the guild’s remaining archmages. “Surely such a thing must appear in records, even if it was not recognized for what it is?”

There was a moment of silence around the table as the others considered this proposal. Archmage Ganver was the first to respond.

“It’s true that we haven’t thought to check,” he admitted. “Perhaps you could go confer with the Mage-Archivists in the library? Then,” he eyed Almonihah, “You’d have something to occupy you other than pacing the halls.”

Almonihah grunted, acknowledging the point unhappily. “’nd the rest of you?”

“Will continue our current lines of research,” Ganver replied, promptly.

“That seems a fair idea,” Garkhen responded, before his friend could say anything further. “Shall we begin?”

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Happy Thanksgiving everyone!