• Posted below are tales, anecdotes and stories of Rika, an Uthgardt warrior from Spine of the World

  • Healing

    Rika stood amongst the surviving Defenders. Blood still dripped from her axe. The screams and loud clashes of weapons on shield and armor had been replaced by an eerie silence interrupted by an occasional moan.

    The battle had been brutal. The orcs had out numbered the defenders considerably, but they had held fast. Four defenders lay dead. Two more lay dying.

    Rika had heard the clashes in the forest when heading north past the west gate of the city. She had rushed deep into the forest’s shaded interior and around the hillside to bear witness to the onslaught. With a battle cry upon her lips, she had joined the fray.

    Now, the defenders milled around momentarily dazed. The battle had required all of the group’s balms and healing potions merely to survive. There were none left for the dying.

    Of the two that still lived, one was a young lad the sergeant called “Daniel”. A three month recruit, the boy looked barely out of his teens. The sergeant had tried to put a healing potion up to his mouth, but the lad was too far gone to drink. The sergeant merely pursed his lips and sighed.

    “He will die a warrior’s death”, Rika thought, though she was dismayed at his youth. Her brother was about the same age when he too had fallen in battle. It just didn’t seem fair.

    It was then she realized, that she had a choice.

    She didn’t understand how or why she knew. She only knew that she could either let him live or die. The dreams of the brightly colored cloak of feathers was suddenly a sharp memory, and the weight of bearing it seemed all too real now. She knelt beside Daniel and took his hand. Somehow, it seemed like the right thing to do.

    Rika suddenly felt warm. Daniel’s eyes briefly fluttered open to meet Rika’s startled gaze. It was a curious sensation that was followed by a sharp intake of breath. Vague color returned to Daniel’s face.

    “Glad you had one left in you priestess”, the sergeant smiled with relief. “Perhaps the lad will see another sunrise”

    As the survivors gathered the dead and a runner was sent to the city, Rika followed silently. She was no priestess. Yet somehow, she had saved the boy’s life. Though she didn’t truly understand the significance of the event, she knew where she must go to find the answers.

    Back to her people. Back to the Spine of the World and perhaps, the ancestral mound itself.

  • Dreams

    Rika sat in Jonni’s spot at the table in front of the Mermaid. It amused her to no end how he claimed the chair and this spot. She took it upon herself to occasionally move the chair he had marked with his name to other locations, even bringing it inside and replacing it with others. She smiled at the thought of his semi sincere protests at her incursions. They were completely ridiculous, and her light hearted teasing at the situation brought mirth to an otherwise overcast and dreary day.

    The heated and spiced cider sat cooling in the stein that she carried everywhere. It had been a parting gift from her favorite village shaman. The shaman had gifted it to her they day before she, her father, and her uncle left to travel north. He reminded her that life wasn’t always that serious, and to drink, enjoy, and take it all in, both good and bad. It was dwarven crafted and bore her name in their odd runic markings. It was probably her favorite possession.

    She took a long sip, cupping the stein in her hands for warmth. She was slow to wake up this morning. The over abundance of mead last night didn’t help.

    The dreams had started innocently enough. She was drifting through the village where she grew up, proudly bearing a cloak of brightly colored feathers. Her parents seemed proud that she owned it. Some warriors looked upon her with envy. Some mocked her as unworthy that it graced her shoulders. Sometimes her brother was there just as she remembered him.

    The dreams never told her how or why she had it. There were hints that it had been bequeathed by her brother. Sometimes it was kept under a bed at her parents’ house, and had been hers all along until she grew into it. Sometimes it was a gift from a mysterious stranger, some larger than life figure unspoken of. Last night she thought she had the answer, but the wisps of the dream world carried it away on little quiet feet and hid it in the shadows of her thoughts.

    To the Uthgardt people, dreams meant something. They were portents and visions often gifted by the ancestors, great spirits or the gods themselves. She knew this dream was important, but couldn’t explain why.

    Someone clearing his throat disturbed her thoughts. Rika looked up into Jonni’s older face. Blonde hair framed a disapproving scowl as he gestured to the chair in which she sat. Rika kicked out a different chair and pointed to it.

    “So Jonni the Seer … Do you do dreams”?