Skies of Ticivorna
While my hatred of Ashurta grows stronger every day, so does my respect for him. He has infiltrated Engean society so thoroughly that there was an entire Ashurtan temple hidden inside the spire of Rustview. We believe it might hold another piece of his crown. If we are right… then it is no wonder he is attacking Rustview. It makes me wonder if Ashurta is waging a war of aggression, or if he believes he is reclaiming his lost kingdom. I suspect the latter. One convenient thing about murderous tyrant-kings is that they usually go away when they are dead. This one, not so.
Our party met up with one Ebenezer Simon, who led us to the temple. He was one of my professors back at Sunsail. His class was mostly focused on pre-Cataclysm artifacts, and it helped spark the wanderlust that made me end up here in the first place.
The tomb appears to be guarded by four statues, each representing an Ashurtan scholar-king and enchanted to act like them. If they were the living representation of the Ashurtan race instead of Ashurta himself, then maybe we wouldn’t be fighting this war.
The four doors tested our determination, responsibility, wisdom, and brotherhood. We had to prove that we were worthy of these kings in order to pass through. Breaker, stubborn as he is, was the perfect match for the determination challenge. Silas, simultaneously the most responsible and irresponsible of us (depending on which profession has arrested his state of mind) was fortunately focused on his task and passed.
For the test of wisdom, I debated Karruk about the meaning of life. What an odd question. I could think of 42 answers off the top of my head. Ultimately I know that, barring some Ashurtan foul sorcery, my time on this planet is finite. I must simply always be striving to be the best at what I am doing. If I do that, then maybe my legacy can transcend my life. This was satisfactory for the talking Karruk statue.
The final test strained our crew almost to the breaking point (pun intended). Breaker and the Captain were thrown in to a ring and commanded to fight until only one life remained. It was terrifying to see them act the way they did, first fighting each other and then turning on their own lives. I know why they did this – they thought their sacrifice was necessary for the rest of the crew. Soon everyone else had interfered and also been thrown in to the ring. I had to act, to stop this madness. We act as one crew, and we cannot tear each other apart. We are greater than the sum of our parts. For these reasons, I argued to Lurtaan, we are like one life. It was at this moment that the statue seemed almost human, not automaton. This was good enough for him, and he let us pass.