Feldard all but stomped his way through the halls, heedless of the looks Nicolai and the others gave him, in their attempts to move through the halls quietly. He was tired of tiptoeing around. As they arrived in front of the northern doors, Feldard strode forward to open the door but was stalled by a cautioning hand from the priest. Feldard scowled and looked the rogue. “Make it quick.”
Maruc released his restraining hand from Feldard’s shoulder. “Patience, Master dwarf. We must all trust in each other and the skills we can bring to bear. Give him some room. We shall pass if Halav wills it.”
All this running about wasn’t taking so much of a toll on the mage now. He was tired but still feeling relatively fit. What he wouldn’t do right now for a cooked meal, warm bath and a soft bed though. He leaned his back against the wall next to the door. Ignoring the sudden cold of the stone he allowed himself to slide down the wall until he was crouching. He gazed ruefully at the priest and the dwarf in their armour wondering if they sat down that would be it for the next eight hours. Well it was high time for some meal or other and he fished out and apple and took a mouthful of water from his canteen as he waited for Nicolai to open the door.
Hasan looked over at Saeth, whose stony silence in recent times was worrisome. Had she lost interest in their quest? Hoping not, he winked at her, and muttered about how her fisherfolk ancestors never dreamed their children would see adventures like these.
Dismissing the others with a wave of his hand and bringing his finger to his lips, Nicolai waited for silence. He listened for a few moments then tried the lock and to push the door. You never knew, certain people have locked unlocked doors with lock picks, and Nicolai wasn’t about to join their number. Then he tried pulling, he wasn’t about to lose face on that one either.
The door opened with a loud creak. The room beyond was a huge 30-foot-wide hall with a cracked ceiling. Two alcoves were set in the east wall, facing two more to the west. A huge elaborately carved woodcut fresco decorated the north wall. Its elaborate elven scenery and symbology matched that of the vault entrance.
In the center of the wall was an artist’s rendering of the Temple on Gray Mountain. Starting at the top, and proceeding in a clockwise direction, the artistry told the story of the history of the elves and the origins of the clan of Elyas. It began with a depiction of the destruction of the original sacred homeland of the elves, called Evergrun, by the Great Rain of Fire. It then showed the Immortal Ilsundal leading the Great Migration to the Sylvan Realm. Next, it depicted a split of some kind as some elven clans struck off on their own, settling on the continent of Brun. The ancestors of the Elyan settled in the Dymrak forest. The elves carved out their peaceful foresthome in the wilds of the land then known as Traladara. However, their sanctuary was threatened as indicated by the renderings of dark hooded wizards invading the countryside, building a foreboding tower in the lands nearby.
Next, was the first illustration of Elyas as he led a group of elves to do battle against the cult of necromancers. Vanquishing their foes, they built a new home in the vicinity of the tower, broke from their previous ties and formed a new clan of elves, the Elyan. Next, the fresco showed how the elves turned their back on their peaceful ways, pursuing power and magecraft as the Black Opal Eye exerted its influence over them. The Sisters Three, Karalena, Solorena and Trilena rebelled against Elyas and attempted to usurp his power. Finally, the collapse of the tower led to the end of Elyas and the return of the Elyan to their roots as they became followers of The Quiet Way.