Stop writing, Edoric- Gondsmen create.
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PC: Elliott Lancord
"Ah, I've packed all my tools!! Plenty of salted fish too, for the road. I mean, we have such a long journey and I'm sure I'll get plenty hungry... Ah! Do you think I'll need winter clothes? How hard would those be to get before we leave-" "I'm sure you'll be fine, Lancord. The mainland is warmer than you think, and Chult isn't too different a climate."
The boy with messy copper hair, and a distinctive large scar across the right side of his mouth, let out a ringing laugh. The High Seeker gave a smile and shake of her head in turn. "We wouldn't have picked you for this if you weren't ready. Besides, Seeker Postulant- You're thinking too much. Gond favors action and creation more than the best thoughts that stay just that, thoughts. ....And just talking about your ideas excitedly doesn't will them into existence, Lancord." She added with a knowing look, as the younger priest slowly closed his open mouth, and slammed his notebook shut.
"Get some rest now, like the rest of the members on our mission. We have a long way to go tomorrow."
The sound of the blast, the yelling and commotion through the temple, and the burning of smoke in his lungs woke Edoric with a start. Tears welling in his eyes as he choked, hitting the ground as he rolled out of his cot and toward the less dense air closer to the floor. He looked up, vision hazy and blurry, but not so much he couldn't see what had happened. A hole had been blasted through part of the wall, scorch marks and rubble strewn all over the rectory as a result. That, and...
He screamed into the shirt he had held over his mouth and nose. Another disoriented priest finally noticing him, and supporting him as they made their way out of the temple, toward where the other surviving missionaries had started gathering. Mourning, praying, some cursing- And Edoric didn't know which of those he should be doing.
"It's been a few months, and he's still lagging behind in studies. More quiet than he used to be too. He just sits there, writing, and mangling materials in any attempt he makes at something!" "Well, can you blame him? He was supposed to be on that mission to Chult. You know... That one. That The Green Band claimed credit for? Where we lost a High Seeker, likely because she was well known for opposing magiocracies?" "Agh, really? Damn. Those bastards. Whether it uses the arcane or not, I'm pretty sure most people on Lantan prefer artifice and invention to wizardry. Radicals. I guess it's fine to just... Let Lancord be, then. Coasting on pity until he can pull it together."
"You're just burnt out." "You've been through a lot." "Its a cycle for inventors, the spark will come back."
Edoric would smile, agree with their platitudes with a laugh, and return to his drifting about the temple. But his eyes were a lot more sullen, and he was seen awake at all odd hours, or sleeping for excessive amounts of time. His pile of ruined materials and half-finished projects grew and grew at his workstation, and his journal thick with excessive notes for projects not started. That, and furious notes and observations from side studies- stacks of books on wizardry and the arcane.
He couldn't understand. He couldn't fathom why, why why why those terrorists did that. But they took something from him that day. If he learned enough, if he could grasp what motivated them so much, would it solve something? Would he have that same passion again? Could he change their minds, if he could come up with something better...?
Edoric looked over at the other Gondsman, watching closely as he put a wind-up key into a small tin frog, that started to hop around the work desk in a manner almost lifelike. The clicks and chimes strangely soothing, until he grasped it, and put it on a small shelf with his other, numerous finished projects. Edoric's lips were creased in a thin line, as he looked at his own pile- still full of half-finished and crude prototypes after all this time.
Lambrac was newer to the clergy than Edoric, but already a Seeker after Small Things. He seemed to receive nothing but praise for his intricately crafted toys, and despite having a reputation for being harsh, was always sought after for an extra hand on exciting projects.
Having his workstation assigned to be next to his own felt like some sort of punishment.
He kept watching Lambrac, as he reached for fresh materials, and unrolled new schematics. His hands making deft work of shaping the tin and crafting some of the most efficient, yet elegant gear systems Edoric had seen in all his time at the church- so much faster, so much better, better than he ever would be able to-
"How do you get your ideas?" "Hm?"
Edoric balled his fists in his lap, and stared down Lambrac, who didn't even meet his gaze. "How do you... stay motivated? Get all these things finished, in ways nobody has even thought to try before-!! I... What do you do?? How do you avoid that trap? When you have nothing left in your brain, you've thought of everything you can think of, and nothing is good enough?"
Lambrac shrugged. "I dunno. I don't think that much about it, I guess. I place my faith in Gond, and I simply do. I've made plenty of failed things. Or useless things. But I kept making, until I found what I wanted to do." He said matter of factly, holding up his now finished toy. The little tin butterfly flapping its wings in his hands, as he finally looked Edoric in the eyes.
"So I guess, when you take everything else out of the equation, everything others want from you or you feel you should, or even what you think Gond expects of you- what do you want to do?"
"I... I want to make things better! I want to make things that would make the same effects as years of magic study, that anyone can use! I want to help people be the best they can, whether they can cast or not! I don't want people like The Green Band to get away with violence, because they can't stand not being able to lord their power over others who can't-!!!" Lambrac blinked, as Edoric quieted a little, his breathing heavy as he scanned Lambrac's face for a reaction.
"Well. Stop writing about it then, and start trying things. That's what Gondar do."
"I didn't ask you to come, you know." "Yeah, but you need someone to help you talk. You're an incredible Gondsman, and I like to think I know you at this point, but you'll need to make friends! And, you'll definitely need an assistant for your excavations and cataloging those Nars artifacts you want to find. Plus, I've been the one workshopping cold-resistant technology!" "....."
Elliott grinned at Lambert's blank face, clapping him on the back before looking back at his map. Scanning it closely, before lowering it with a bigger smile. According to the map, that city over the ridge was Peltarch, their destination.
"Do you think they celebrate Ippenshier? Oh, Oh, we can see how Krii worship, I've heard there's a shrine here! Ah, how cold do you think it'll actually be-""You're doing it again, Elliott." "Ah- Right!!"
He folded the map and shoved it away into the pages of his journal, holding on to his pack and trotting after Lambert with a smile. He'd finally found his stride lately, between Lambert's guidance and a surprising use for his inventions as adventuring aids. The two had picked up new names easier for mainlanders to pronounce... Things were going well! And they could only continue to go well now that they were actually about to get to Narfell, and he could learn even more from his mentor, from ancient artifacts, make new friends, new observations, and maybe help some people along the way!! He finally felt like he was starting to feel less lost. Less empty, and confused after all this time. He'd be able to maintain that passion and only improve from here!!