Grit in the wounds
So, today is the first of the High Winter. The road is bleak, and canvas makes for poor insulation. At least the stockade holds off the demons better.
Darkness has come to us, to me. Those whom I held in highest regard, the paladins, have fallen. The youths can be forgiven for trickery, but the others have seen, have been, too much. Thier faith in the gods has shown me that the gods walk amongst us and protect us. Thier faith kept my mind strong when the darkness was upon me, gave me the strength to mutilate myself rather than give in. Gave me the strength to know that my judgement will be destruction, and that I will face it having done everything in my power to off-set that judgement.
And now they are lost, all for some mis-guided martyr complex.
We live to serve, and they sacrifice to serve, but thier experience should have guided thier thoughts away. Thier ridicule and ostracising of my condition should be enough to tell them that once you have gone, you are gone - no matter how much you come back.
So now we march through the snow to Caer Brennon, with heavy hearts, and heavier purpose. They have a sliver of hope. If they can trap and slay the demon, thier bargain is broken. I have the components I need to make a blade capable of harming the creature, but we do not yet have a weapon capable of finishing the beast.
If word of our condition becomes common knowledge, then we will not be the saviours of the King. The stigma that still prevents me from understanding my condition will come to the outriders, and that will kill them. The humans need distracting, they also need a symbol for thier new kingdom.
A blade fit for a king, yet undeniably the work of Starkholme. Of Men and Elves and Forest. The outriders alreay bear the Hope of the people, so what should the king bear?
Responsibility? He is a weary politician. He doesn't need a sword in his side reminding him of wounds.
Rulership? The people do not need a reminder of subjugation.
The sword of Lachlan, the King After the Fall.
The King that led Men back to greatness.
Whose son fought with us when we reclaimed Leyroth.
That has a nice ring to it.