The story so far:
As Flandnag scraped the fire roasted excrement out from between his toes, across the Dead Zone another scene unfolded between wizard and owl.
Gandalf slammed his staff down on the perch of the sleeping owl. “Will you quit your damn napping! You fell asleep again, you stupid fool. Hear me! Something terrible has happened. “
“Hooooot …hooooot,” yawned the nocturnal bird of prey. He had learned to stay out of Gandalf’s way when he was waving around his staff like a mouse in the clutch of his talons. “Relax. We live in a good world with a just God. What could be so wrong that a little magic couldn’t fix?”
Gandalf simply hated how this useless twit relied on his powers to resolve all problems that beset them. He wished to pluck out his feathers and roast him with onions and potatoes. But this is nothing but a distraction from problem at hand. Gandalf was concerned. Could this be too big for even Gandalf to handle? There had been a breach of purity between the two Zones. Two members had crossed the Dead Zone and now inhabit each other’s realm. Gandalf was afraid the rift was too wide for magic to repair. He would venture out and watch from afar. He hoped that the “Just God” that damn fool owl spoke of was watching too.
Gandalf gathered his staff and cane and ventured across the arid land to the grove of trees just beyond the reaches of the Dead Zone. From there he could watch the traveler, Samoht as he gained acceptance of the family left behind by another traveler.
Samoht loved the hard work needed to survive in this new place. Sweat would shine on his suntanned skin with each stroke of the pitchfork used to move the living elements out of the soil. Long ago he had learned to command the dead and steal life from the living. But here things were fundamentally different. This work provided food that would give life. Bringing life out of the dirt. A true miracle. He loved the cyclical nature of this life. He worked hard to learn the skills needed here. He listened attentively to the instruction of the wise man whose family he lived with and adopted as his own. He loved the sense of accomplishment of a job well done. He glowed in the eyes of his new father whose praise lifted Samoht’s spirit and gave his life true meaning. The sheanangans of his younger siblings lightened his heart and gave him the chance to understand childhood in a way that he was never permitted under the Order of the Fang. In fact, each night when he retired, he hoped to awaken without the memory of that other existence.
He always knew there was a place for him where he could express his true strengths of courage and commitment. He even had attracted the attention of a young damsel who saw Samoht as her hero as he had come to help her family rebuild their home, lost to a fire. There was promise that this tender love would develop into something long lasting. Perhaps his father would allow him to raise a family, here, on the same piece of land. He could take over the farm and care for these parents when they became too weak to manage for themselves. It would be an honor to do that for them, for their gift of life, as he saw it. Yes, although they were not his blood, the felt they had become his true parents. They gave him responsibilities that require bravery and prowess, strength and cunning. Not the God given powers he was expected to use by the Order of the Fang. Here he was not the Necromancer. He was Samoht. Simply, Samoht. Or Thomas, as they called him.