Enderal:The Life of Torgan Whispertongue, Volume 2
The Breach of the Path
My mother became seriously ill. Whether or not this was grounded in the heartache she had suffered from is something I do not know. At that time I felt certain that it had to do with the priest. Some kind of monkey business was at work. Her condition deteriorated so quickly that an apothecarius had to take care of her, as I didn't have enough time to do so in addition to my occupation.
The work of a librarian was rather dull and dry. I was pining for more, for my vocation. I studied the sciences, like my father once did together with me, on the quiet and tried to do several easy exercises in magic, which all ended in failure due to my lack of talent. I dreamt about my noble aims, used hours of sorting books for imagining how nice it would be if I could call myself a member of the Holy Order. But that was an impossible dream of mine as my Path held me to where I belonged. Maybe you know the feeling — when you are in a much too tight room, shaft, or something similar and you can't get enough air to breathe.
Or if a much too tight shirt takes your breath away — ladies especially should be familiar with the issue of a too tightly laced corset. This was the sentiment I had towards my Path. It held me captive and imprisoned my will.
Despite spending most of my time in private, I found my first and only love in Maressa Greytrue. I would give anything to see her again nowadays. Her laugh was similar to a sunrise above the Red Ocean…but that belongs to another, happier part of my life, one which I won't give any place to in this story. She encouraged me to take my clever experiments and my knowledge to a magister who should acknowledge my talent. But no matter what I tried — whether I ran after them or stalked their houses like a madman — no magister wanted to hear me out or to see what I had to show them. If they would have done so I was confident that they would have received me with open arms.
My Path was a prison. The tightness locked me up more and more and I wanted to escape from it. I wanted to break out. At the same time I was at odds with myself and my ideals. It was obvious to my young self that my faith in the Path was misled.
My scientific studies now became social studies. I observed the Path's oppression in all of its extremes: the workers in the tar pit and the Sublimes who lacked nothing. Heat, iron, sweat, blood, and quite often even death by overworking awaited an ordinary man in the tar pit's tunnels. In total contrast were the aristocracy and the Sublimes, who lived high off the hog. I made note of what I saw, especially how the Sublimes treated the Manufacturers when both Paths crossed.
A tremendous coincidence called my attention to a meeting of young citizens which took place in the Undercity. This kind of shady organization obviously wasn't commonly known, but every so often one could find propaganda posters, which were overlooked on the building's walls, even by the attentive guards. One of those fell into my hands and it didn't take long until a nameless informant told me of the secret gathering place.
It was certainly exciting for me with my calm temper to be pulled into such company. Meetings in chambers located underground, with people whose names I didn't know, had never belonged to my everyday activities before. On my way I made sure that I wasn't being followed and entered the aggregation's venue, an abandoned shack in the chaos of the dark Undercity. As our model served Ines Dineja, who was the leader of the Blood Moon Riots, the name of our organization became “The Blood Moon Lodge.” I was feeling accepted in the Lodge's ranks. Here I could discuss with other people topics which were shunned in public, about which no prudent Endralean would gossip so viciously. There were even heated discussions with kindred spirits about solutions to political and religious problems.
Although some of the idealists' views seemed too harsh and militant to me, I got myself involved with the Blood Moon Lodge. Their leader, Quindros Aslodar, a young and dynamic man, had spoken of a night which we would never forget, prior to one of the following meetings. And it was just as he said. He distributed Glimmercapdust among the idealists, myself included. I had knowledge of the droga's destructive nature and how many poor souls it had already taken to their graves. Therefore I hesitated. Nevertheless I wanted to stay a member of the Blood Moon Lodge, so I overcame my rationality — and crossed a line that would change my life for years to come. With a fiery speech, Quindros heralded the start of the “Night of Disentanglement” which was to lead us into “total freedom” — he told us so in his inferno of words.
Have you ever consumed Glimmercapdust? What I can tell you about this droga is that it is strong enough to make you forget how it tasted or smelled after the intoxication subsides. It takes full effect quickly, and in no time at all reduces you into an uncontrollable lump of flesh, unable to distinguish between left and right. To compare it to an alcoholic stupor would be in no way adequate.
Quindros, in his amplified state of mind, shooed us out of the Fallow's meeting place into the Undercity. I lost my fellow campaigners in the chaos before my eyes. My world became distorted while I was stumbling down the dark roads. Human faces turned into the grisly jaws of monsters, preparing to devour me. I saw demons and Lost Ones surrounding me. Jugglers danced hand in hand with myrads. The prostitutes in front of the Silver Cloud didn't look at me with seductive eyes, but instead wore the ugly and hollowed heads of Vatyrs. When they tried to solicit me, I crawled, rushed, and struggled my way into an empty alley where I didn't see any demonic grimaces, but instead a thousand staring eyes on the walls.
At the end of this furious night's intoxication, I woke up in a haystack with a throbbing head. In that moment, in which I was staggering through the roads to the exit of the Undercity with a face as white as a sheet, just like a drunk, I had yet to understand that I had changed. The ritual was successful. I was free. I had attained absolute freedom and was successful in cutting off Malphas and his restrictive path.
Now I was … a Pathless One.