Many years have passed since I first landed on these busy docks. As I sit here now, writing this, I can’t help but wax sentimental. I’m getting older now and my hair has turned silver, but I still make a tidy profit with sword and shield. The weathered boards beneath me make my pulse quicken as I remember what it was like for me after I first came ashore here.
My name is Tyrnie Hoklinder and I’m on the docks of Stormreach harbor waiting for some old friends to arrive. This has been our meeting place for what seems to me now forever. As far as I’m concerned, this is where I was born.
A far off first mate’s whistle drifts to shore from a lazy barge approaching and I scan its decks for who I already know is there: new adventurers from Korthos on their way to a destiny only they may forge. I wish I could tell them what to do, what path to follow, but I know they wouldn’t listen to a gray-haired woman from days long past anyway.
I breathe the fresh air. It makes me feel young again.
The barge reaches the dock and a wooden ramp is tossed from ship to dock. A crewman disembarks followed by a young woman. Her eyes are huge as she takes in the sights and sounds of the harbor and my heart leaps for her. I stand and walk over to her and smile. She reminds me of me back then.
I’ve some old bracers in my pack and they will make her strong when she can use them. I pull them out and hand them to her soundlessly. She has no idea what they are but she takes them anyway and thanks me. I nod and return to my place on the dock to finish writing in this journal while I wait.
The sun is setting on the horizon and the water of the lagoon before me turns a deep blue. I watch as a bird flirts with the stars that faintly appear above and then it dives straight down to snare a fish. The rest of the new adventurers are standing around on the dock and the young woman is pointing at me with one hand and holding the bracers with the other. She excitedly tells them about my generosity but none of them approach me. They just turn and stare and wonder who I am.
I see my friends approaching and I know who I am. I am a wanderer, an adventurer. I am she who alone stood dripping with acid at the end of a long battle with a black dragon. I am the one who cast down countless pretenders who thought they’d rule despotic over those who couldn’t fight for themselves. I am a sword for hire and friend to those heroic mercenaries approaching now.
I think back to when we first met…