Flocktime 18, 636 CY
I didn’t expect to see Jeremy and Frederik in Zeif, let alone the palace. I don’t think I’ve been happier to see anyone in my life. It was the biggest sense of relief. They both looked worried and it really showed when Jeremy’s attempt to get me to slap him was rather weak. They were in much better spirits when we came back from the Temple. Though their eyes almost popped out when I told them that the only person to suffer any serious harm was Ardes. Villius’ tactical knowledge is to thank for that.
Baryoi’s letter is a great comfort. Of course, only a necromancer would find a letter from a lich comforting. I hemmed and hawed over my response and rewrote the letter several times. My response to his gift was less tactful, though I give myself full marks for not jumping up and down and screaming like a five year old on Longnight until the boys left the room. The lab is far bigger than a master of my standing would typically have access too. Besides living quarters and a laboratory, it houses a medical bay and is stocked to the gills. While mostly plain and ready for customization, there are distinct touches of home. Both the master bedroom and the retainer’s room had rosewood and bone construct beds. So comfy! The living room mimics the dark fairyland of the Underfaust parks complete with metal chime trees and illusory birds under a starry, moonlit sky.
Having such a well stocked lab that isn’t part of a shop means I can indulge in what most consider ‘real necromancy,’ or raising things as undead. Necromancers who aren’t Hollowfaust trained have a tendency to cobble together the bones of all sorts of creatures willy-nilly into monstrosities that they inevitably lose control of. This is because every living thing leaves an imprint of itself even into its bones and sinews. A dog’s bones, in general, will create an intensely loyal creation while a cat’s will produce independence and an attitude of disdain. This phenomenon is the reason why Hollowfaust citizens become our guardians after death: intense loyalty to the city is in the bones. A careful selection of bones will produce amazing effects. Of course, if you want a real disaster, putting male and female bones in the same body will do the trick every time. The dragon engine Hareneth is a prime example of careful selection. By using a gold dragon heart and bones for the super structure, the overwhelming good alignment flowed directly into the human pieces fusing together a well made and intelligent creature.
A careful selection of dog, lemur, and fox bones have given me quite a cute little janitor. He took very quickly to training and was running around the lab in no time. He made a little nest for himself behind a tree in the living room from an old scarf and a ball of yarn. I named him Button.
While I know that the door into Hollowfaust is a safe one and I can trust the man on the other side, the conscious logic does not outweigh my unconscious fear. I tremble just going near the door and touching the knob makes me nauseous enough that I have to run to the bathroom.
For as desperately as I want to go home, I can’t make myself go through the door. Asaru’s wish that I feel cut off and afraid of my city has come true.