The Frost Potion – Page 37


With some difficulty – for his hands were meant for sword-swinging, not tinkering – Perilous Jack sets about restoring the Golem’s Heart.

One by one, he reconnects the wires and hoses, and as he does, the Heart begins to glow, first a pale red like the whisper of dawn, and then a fierce, bloody crimson. When the final hose is attached, Jack closes the panel over the Heart and leaps away, drawing his sword. For an instant, all is silent and still – and then, muffled but still sensible, the Heart begins to beat.

A dozen beats pass, and still the Golem does not move. Jack lowers his sword – and suddenly the Golem’s eyes erupt into lambent blue flame. The Golem opens and closes its mouth, dislodging showers of rust flakes. The jaws squeal horribly at first, but as the Golem works the joints, Jack sees streams of lubricant emerge and trickle down the Golem’s chin. When the jaws are loose again, the Golem speaks.

What is the name of the Master?

Jack tightens his grip on the hilt of his sword, but hesitates. He knows the answer.

“Master Cleric Fostor M’Bathia,” he answers.

And the name of his Master?

“Tifar’et,” Jack replies.

And the virtue of his Master?

Jack thinks for a moment. “Mercy,” he answers.

The Iron Golem falls silent again. After a moment, it extends its right hand, and briefly touches Jack upon the forehead with a huge, flame-hot finger.

You have read the words, and the Mercy of Tifar’et has spared you from the flame. By the Will of Tifar’et, the burden falls to you.

The Golem withdraws its hand. With a soft click, the tip of the Golem’s forefinger opens, and a slender Gold Key emerges.

Guard the Nightcrystal. Render it only unto She who bears the Silver Star.

With these words, the Golem falls silent and the flame vanishes from its eyes. The Heart beats a few more times and is still.

Perilous Jack takes the Key and examines it closely. It is pure gold and glows with enchantment. A spiral sun, the symbol of Tifar’et, is engraved on the end.

There is only one lock in the room – that upon the treasure chest in the niche near the ceiling.

Add the following to the Journal: If the words of a dead cleric are to be believed, I am now the Guardian of the Nightcrystal. It remains to be seen what this portends. I have been advised to ‘render it only unto She who bears the Silver Star’ – whoever that may be.

Add the Gold Key to the Pouch of Ghrul and turn to 34.