the tempest Who: Desiderio Ledaal, Yonca Ghanem. NPC, Ser Mortimer. Where: The road not far outside Denerim. When: 18 Molioris, 9:45 Dragon. Summary: In which two bloodmages have a brilliant plan to relieve a Templar of his precious cargo. Rating: M, for Maybe Murder? Status: In progress.
At this point, Ser Mortimer was having a hard time thinking about anything besides his aching feet. Unless it was the slate-gray sky above that made late afternoon look more like late evening, roiling clouds threatening to drench him at any second. Or maybe the fact that he was exhausted because he’d been up since well before dawn to make up his pace, since he’d lost a few hours the day before stopping to help a merchant with his overturned cart. Or the two heavy packs he carried in addition to his mace, one full to bursting with his traveling supplies, the other of ledgers and letters and, most importantly, six delicate, carefully wrapped vials destined for the secret archive in Denerim. Those worried him. He’d made this particular trip between the city, the Tower and back a number of times now, but had never transported phylacteries before. He had to resist the constant urge to stop and check to be certain he hadn’t broken them by mistake. Wouldn’t that be mortifying? Showing up to face the Knight Commander in Denerim and taking off his pack to deliver the goods, only to find blood dripping through the cloth? He’d started having nightmares about it the last few nights, like the ones he’d had in Templar training as a boy where he showed up to devotional services with no pants on. He felt foolish for it, but there it was, he couldn’t stop them. The sooner he got to Denerim the better, where his own chambers waited for him… oh to be asleep in his own bed, these damned vials gone from his worries!
He didn’t like to travel with his helmet on, it being so hard to see anything from the inside of a little metal barrel with a single tiny slit in it, but the wooded, hilly ledge that ran along this section of the road invited bandits inclined to pepper travelers with arrows from above. He’d run into trouble along here once or twice before, and he didn’t particularly care for the idea of dying via arrow through the brain just because he’d flouted regulation and been on duty without his helm. Anyway, he supposed it’d at least keep the rain off his head if it did start to pour. To keep himself from brooding about the overall misery of his current condition, and thinking himself utterly alone, he began to quietly sing his favorite canticle of the Chant. It would normally be a bad idea, bandits might hear and come looking, but in this weather? Surely that sort of unsavory character had holed up by now, avoiding the impending rainstorm. Anyway you hardly ever got to hear it sung anymore, and that was a shame. A modest man by nature, Mortimer would never have claimed to be a particularly good singer, but despite his humility he actually had quite a fine voice; a clear tenor, only slightly ruined by the way it echoed inside his helm, muffled to the outside world but amplified just for him.
He could be in Denerim by tomorrow morning, if the rain didn’t stop him too soon. It was a comforting thought, as were the words of the Chant. He smiled to himself slightly as he sang to no one, readjusting his twin packs and trying to ignore the distant rumble of thunder.