So this is a short story I wrote for a DnD Character a while back. Thought I'd toss it up and see what you guys thought:
“Wake up, child.”
“Wha? Where am I?”
“You reside in the in between, child. You are where you will always be.”
Darkness fills his vision as he opens his eyes for the first time. As things slide in to focus for him, he sees the world through black and white but clearly. He takes in his surroundings. There are many statues here. A man riding a dragon, a dwarf preparing for battle, an orc wielding a large hammer, and many other sights that he does not fully understand. Curious at the fullness but emptiness of the place, he speaks aloud, “I dunna understand. Where are ye?”
“I am all around you, child. I am within you and part of you but not all at the same time.”
Standing up and trying to get a sense of his surroundings, the young dwarf has a feeling of familiarity with everything around him even though he has no memory of seeing this place. In fact, he has no memories at all. He remembers nothing. His head hurts but not the pain of the physical. “If ye are all around me, why can ah not see ye?”
“You will…in time. For now child, rest and partake of the bounty before you.”
As the voice echoes in to nothingness, the dwarf sees a table that was not there before. Foods of all kinds are there and drink of every type. He settles in for a meal as he finds himself starving. He knows, somehow, that he has not eaten in a long while. Has it been days or weeks? Or maybe even months? He knows not other than he is famished.
As time passes, while he fills his belly, he begins to gain more focus about his surroundings. “This place,” he thinks, “It feels of home but I know not of it or where it is. I have no idea who I am. Where is here? What happened?” He begins to wonder the area. As he adventures in to the place, he begins to understand. This is a great hall of some kind. He finds tapestries that depict many scenes. One of a dragon and a man, riding the dragon, battling a many headed creature. Another is of an anvil holding either the world or a world upon its flattened surface. Another scene depicts an army of orcs and goblins attacking a mine. Alone, among the sea of orcs is a loan creature. A dwarf maybe? His green hair and yellow beard seem familiar but out of place. There are other scenes, some of titans in a world that it appears they are ruling and still another of beings made from some sort of stone marching the land covered in storms. As he takes it all in, he finds a window that shows the outside.
The land is covered in a great mist. This mist is thick and heavy but not oppressive. “This is the place of in between?” he thinks. He has a desire to go out and see this land. And as this thought comes to him, so the disembodied voice returns.
“You will go outside, in due time. But first, you must understand. To understand, you must learn. To learn, you must be taught.”
“I am to be taught? Indeed, ye seem ta think I know nothing at all.” The dwarf speaks and takes on a standoff-ish tone. “I be no fool. I dunna need te be condescended at, ye snark.” He turns and looks for the source of this voice but begins truly understand. This voice has no body and is not simply in his mind.
The voice, seemingly reading his thoughts, asks, “If this is the case, then tell me who you are and what you know, child.” And as though the whole land had shifted, the air became incredibly cold and the air oppressive with frost. The floor suddenly seems slick and ice covered. The young dwarf starts to rub his arms but holds his ground.
“Ye’ll not bully me. I’ve not a mind for that. Power no gives ye the right to be cruel or harsh to someone.” As he speaks, it feels like a switch literally flips in his head and many memories and thoughts seem to return to him in a flood. It is a painful experience. He is driven to his knees and he lets out a gasp of frozen air. “Me name,” he speaks in a rough tongue, “is Keldrogar. I be a cleric in service of Moradin and I have failed.” Tears begin to freeze to his cheeks as they fall from his eyes. “I didna prevent the destruction of that world. “
“That is correct child. And now, you must pay the penance for your actions. Your anger lead you astray from your path. Not for the first time has your attitude come to be in the way of your faith. Moradin will forgive you, as he always does. But this time, you must suffer the consequences of these actions.” The air seems to grow soft and a little warm. Keldrogar stands and finds himself covered in dirt and blood. His body is bruised and his mind feels broken. He turns in a complete circle and watches as the end plays out before him.
The wars that ravaged the lands before him. The titans taking and not caring. The lands becoming bare and the titans leaving. “I have ta fix it. I must try.” Even as he speaks, he knows his journey will be a long one and maybe even his task is impossible. “I canna now. I have the strength and the power. I dunna need ta fail. “
“No, child, you will not have the strength you have now. You will not have the power you have now. That is part of your punishment. You may choose to try to fix your mistake but you will be stripped if this is the choice you make.” The voice is hard and cold as ice. It cuts through is bones like steel through flesh.
“And should ah not make that decision? Then what?” The dwarf asks though he already knows the answer. Inside, he knew what his choices were and he did not like them. “What is ta become of me?”
“You will be stripped of your title and your place. You will no longer be the realms traveler and protector of worlds. You will go home one last time. You will grow old and die, as all mortals do. This is because you will be returned to your land as a mortal.”
“An’ what will I lose should I try to fix this? Ye said I’d be stripped but of what?”
The world comes in to focus and Keldrogar feels as natural as everyone around him. He finds himself in a tavern, where a bard is offering drinks for tales. He knows only that he must restore what has been lost, if he can. Or he will perish in the effort.