This is part three from a story I was writing a long, long time ago.
The material contains reference to copyrighted material owned by TSR and now Wizards of the Coast. Disclaimer, blah, blah, blah.
Dwarves had always amazed Nym Zoland. He had studied their history. First, they had totally rejected magic, relying totally on their swords and axes to survive. Then, with a flick of the eye, they embraced magic, as completely as they had rejected it before. His infravision, or night vision, had revealed both Flard and Telrin’s leaving. He guessed that Telrin was going to test the boundaries of his new-found powers. He also guessed that Flard was going to meditate. Strange creatures, these dwarves. So close to each other, yet so far apart. If they only could experience the unification and brotherhood that existed in the circles of Cerin. Only through worship of him could one truly understand others and himself. Nym had learned to look at himself and others in a point of view that was non-biased, without blame or judgment. Yet, these Dwarves are different…
His thoughts drifted back to his homeland, the Drow Forests. These forests housed the Artigent, or good, Drow Elves. They had broken away from their evil kin centuries ago, establishing themselves as a power to be reckoned with. Nym Zoland had never been comfortable with other Drow, even his family. He had only found peace at the only temple of Cerin in the forests. He had traveled on foot miles upon miles to reach the temple. Cerin had noticed his vigilance and his hunger for wisdom. Cerin had granted him the powers of the Cleric, a Cleric of Earth. He had had much time to reflect as he had journeyed back home. He had decided to preach the wisdom of Cerin to his own home village, maybe even establish a temple. As he had entered his village, he had noticed an extreme quiet. Try as he might, he did not find any of his kin. The village had been completely empty, not a living soul to be found. Rage, isolation, and madness had filled him, driving him to human cities outside of the forests. There he had met up with this oddball team. He still doubted their control of their abilities, yet he guessed that these Dwarves, different from other Dwarves, were gaining part of that wisdom.
Nym slowly drifted to sleep, still troubled by nightmares of his empty village.
“C’mon, Nym! Get up! Get up, Nym!” The voice of a worried Zet Unt awakened Nym. It was still night, with the moon high in the sky. The whole party was packing up, ready to leave.
“What in Cerin is going on here?”
Zet sighed and relayed the news. “Telrin’s located his Spelljamming ship. It’s just over that ridge.” Zet pointed, acting as though something was still troubling him.
“Come on, Zet. Spill it out.” Nym did not like being kept in the dark.
“I, uh, well, we’re kind of being attacked by a hoard of Sorgs.” The massive creatures, with spines growing out of most of their bodies were more than a match for their party of adventurers. Nym quickly packed his belongings and joined the rest of the party. The rest of the night was filled with hiking, climbing, and no sleeping. By the end of the journey, it was all he could do to put one foot in front of the other. The scenery faded into dreamlike nonexistence. All that existed were his feet, one in front of the other, one in front of the other.
A sudden and powerful wind gust brought Nym Zoland out of his peaceful trance. Looking up, he could see a Spelljamming ship. It was shaped in two sections, the first being the front, where the Helm was. The rear looked like the front, except for a low, sleek pyramid sitting on the top of it. The two sections were connected by a dense magical field, powerful enough to kill almost anything. It landed, allowing the party to board. Nym hated this ship. It was the only thing that could take him away from his god. The ship rose while the ground seemed to grow smaller. Below, he could see the Sorg hoard, writhing and twisting about the beautiful scenery, completely ruining it. A terrible sickness arose in Nym Zoland’s stomach. He believed it to be the effects of rising so quickly, but deep down he knew that it was his repulsion at the ground below that was being torn apart.
Sickness. ‘Why did this damn ship have to go up so fast?! Finally, we’re slowing down.’ Silver clash detested this “Spelljamming ship.” He was holed up in his cabin, trying intently to ignore the swaying of the ship. Even in space, a ship seemed to sway back and forth, back and forth. He looked out of the porthole, seeing a carpet of blackness, punctured with holes that let the light in. The carpet jumped out and surrounded him, pulling him out and into it. All at once the lights went out.
Worry. No, not worry, apprehension. Someone is in trouble. Trident blinked, bringing his senses back to the bridge of the ship. He rose, feeling shrunken and incomplete. There was only one other person aboard, and he was capable of getting into a lot of trouble. He opened the door to Silver Clash’s cabin, expecting trouble. Instead, he found Silver passed out near the window. He sighed, heaving Silver onto his bunk. Terror struck as the floor jumped up to meet him. Trident bolted out of the room, towards the bridge. Throwing himself onto the Helm, he expanded his senses to the limit. Something big had just missed the ship, altering the gravity plane for a moment. Where did it come from? ‘Behind, far behind.’ Another ship, one that appeared to be a giant snail’s shell, with a giant wooden octopus’ head leering out of the shell at him. ‘A Nautiloid, danger.’ A shiver made its way up Trident’s spine as a picture formed itself in his mind. Another object separated itself from the monstrosity. Trident
changed course, picking up speed. The object seemed to slow down as the Smalljammer matched and passed its speed. ‘Expectation.’ Trident focused his thoughts ahead of the ship. A black, perforated wall stretched in all directions,
completely filling his view. The wall was so huge, soincomprehensibly huge, that it held Trident enthralled. He was completely oblivious to his surroundings. A crash warned him of the impending danger. He focused again, watching the projectile hurtle towards the wall.
It headed straight towards one of the perforations. Trident focused directly on the perforation. Pure white shone out of a hole in the black wall. Just before the object entered the hole, it crumbled to dust and disappeared. Trident realized what could happen to him, his ship, and his companion if he made one false move.
‘Close.’ Trident shifted his “vision” again, and realized that the horrible ship was gaining on him. He urged the Smalljammer faster, even though he knew that he was at top speed. A red, burning flash seared his mind as he was pressed hard into the Helm, his command chair. He realized that the black wall was rushing at him at an incredible speed.
A burst of blue light opened up before him. He realized that he must go into the tunnel formed by the crackling blue energy. How he came by these realizations, he had no idea. Suddenly, he was back at the Helm. Trident looked around, sensing something wrong, yet not being able to pinpoint it. The window caught his attention. Surrounding the ship was a humungous blue tunnel. The tunnel swirled around him with crackling blue energy, making him dizzy. He would never see his homeland again.
‘No worry.’ Trident twisted around, expecting to see Silver Clash with a laughing expression on his face. But no one was there. It must have been the Smalljammer, but he wasn’t sitting on the Helm. A great headache welled up
behind Trident’s eyes, so he decided to go to bed. He needed his sleep, or he would lose his mind. He stumbled to his quarters, grasping his head in his hands.
Nym looked around, sizing up the Spelljammer. This was the largest ship in existence, and he knew that for a fact. It rivaled the largest city on his home world, Creation. There were castle towers, portholes as large as the largest dragon, and small buildings scattering the red back of the ship. There was something more, something that set this ship apart from all others. Nym also noticed that Telrin was kneeling down and touching the floor of the ship delicately. His strangely altered eyes had shifted from the uncontrollable red flames to a more purplish color, a more wise color. Telrin closed his eyes, and a serene look crossed the Dwarf’s face. Nym wondered if Telrin could actually communicate with the huge ship. There seemed something oddly familiar about it. Maybe…
“Who are you? What are you doing on my Small…Spelljammer?” A thin elf, not a normal elf from Creation, but an elf nonetheless, came out of one of the towers, followed quickly by a burly human. The elf, dressed in strange robes, seemed to be debating with himself. “Please excuse me for my rude welcome, gentlemen. I have seen many surprises today, and they seem to finally be taking an effect on me. Please, come inside, where we can talk.” For some reason, everyone looked to Telrin for confirmation. Illent Des began to grumble.
“That’s amazing.” Zet Unt was flabbergasted. Nym chuckled at the naietivity of his fellows. The “amazing” story of Trident the Orange and Silver Clash had filled their ears while Trident’s wine had filled their stomachs.
“The next thing that I knew,” continued Trident, “my Smalljammer had grown, and we were orbiting around this planet.” Nym found it wondrous that the Smalljammer that Telrin had helped had found its way back to Creation.
“Obviously,” Nym Zoland interjected, “Cerin has a task for you.” The whole group sighed, extremely used to Nym’s preaching. He glanced around, wondering what was wrong.
“Who’s Cerin?” Silver Clash, the burly human, asked.
“You will know soon.” A sense of certainty filled Nym, as it did often as of late. He knew that he was getting closet to the meeting with his maker, his master, and his friend.
“We–” Silver never finished his sentence. The floor shifted, accompanied by a crash of metal on wood.