As Theodyne realized where he was, he lay perfectly still, for though he knew he were in a cave, he knew not why or how he had gotten there, or where the cave even was. More importantly, he did not know if he were alone. He laid still and remained quiet until he heard a voice echo through the cave. He knew this voice. The necromancer!
he thought to himself. The one who took his soul was in the cave with him. He saw the light of a torch glistening across the cave wall as the necromancer approached and Theodyne closed his eyes. He would wait until the time was right, after all, he did not know if he could escape Coldharbour a second time and did not want to chance it.
Theodyne laid perfectly still, taking only short, shallow breaths so as not to alert the necromancer to his consciousness. The cave smelled of charred deer meat and boiled mudcrab and this made Theodyne very hungry and he only prayed that his stomach would remain quiet. The necromancer's footsteps approached, and as they got closer they stopped.
"Not so tough now are you Theodyne?" the necromancer laughed as he patted Theodyne on the chest. After a bit more mocking, the necromancer began to yawn and found himself very tired from the nights ride and with a full belly he was ready for bed.
Once Theodyne was sure the necromancer was fast asleep, he carefully rose to his feet. He was careful not to make any noise as he did not want to disturb the sleeping mage. Having laid with his eyes closed for hours, his eyes were now accustomed to the dark and he could see well enough to move about safely. Standing at the feet of the sleeping necromancer, he scanned the area looking for anything that he could use to subdue him. He saw the end table where the necromancer's dagger lay, the steel blade glistening in the dark. He reached for the blade and stopped. And then he saw it. A lone soul gem sitting on the end table. A sinister smile crept across Theodyne's face. Now Theodyne was not evil by any means, but he found this to be only fitting. Theodyne picked up the soul gem and made his way to the sleeping necromancer. He held the gem tightly in his hand and stretched his other hand over the body that lay before him. He stopped, hand hovering over the mage he felt for a moment that what he was about to do was horribly wrong. But only for a moment. He deserved this for what he had done to Theodyne. Theodyne placed his hand firmly in the center of the mage's chest and Henry's eyes opened. He only uttered two words before his soul was transferred to the gem.
As the gem began to glow, Theodyne stood to his feet and began to give commands to the lifeless body.
"Stand up." he ordered. And the mage rose to his feet ever so calmly. "Grab your dagger." Theodyne said forcefully. And the mage walked to the end table and picked up his dagger. "Now, thrust the blade into your heart." he whispered. And the mage did as he was told. With as much force as he could muster, the mage thrust the curved dagger into his chest without making so much as a whimper. And a single tear rolled down his expressionless face. For Theodyne, this was not enough. He had to punish him even more. Without thinking, he did the first thing he could think of, he smashed the soul gem against the floor, breaking it into many pieces. And as the gem shattered, the necromancer collapsed to the ground.
Theodyne was partially ashamed of what he had done. But he justified himself with the words that Marcus had said to him, "Sometimes we must commit a necessary evil, in order to achieve a greater good."
And the death of a necromancer, according to his council, was a very good thing. He stared for quite a long while at the dead body that lay at his feet while questions began to cross his mind. Where am I? How long had it been since that night in the ruins? Questions he needed answers to. As to not waste any more time, he opened his hand and produced a tiny flame which slowly grew into a fireball the size of a tomato and he threw the fireball onto the dead corpse. With light in the cave he could see his armor and weapons. He quickly dressed himself. He picked up his father's sword and stared at it for a moment. He noticed the crest on the hilt of the sword and his eyes filled with tears. He closed his eyes and pushed them back. It was not his father he had killed he told himself over and over again until he finally believed it. After sheathing his sword, he located a torch and lit it with the burning body and found his way to a rotted wooden door that led outside the cave. He could see sunlight shining through the cracked wood and discarded the torch knowing he would not need it. As he opened the door the sunlight washed over him, burning his eyes only for a moment. The warmth of the sun felt good upon his face and for a moment he stood there embracing the daylight. The things he had done to survive were horrible, and he knew this. He bowed his head in shame. What will the council say of this?
he thought to himself. What will they do to me?
He feared that he would be cast out of his order for things he had done. But he had done these things. They would have to understand he had no choice. Or would they not?
No, he could not chance everything he had worked for. He would keep his secret. There was no one who would even know. The only other person who did was dead.
After hours of walking through the woods and open fields, Theodyne happened across a road and saw a young man riding a horse. He held up his hand to halt the young man and he stopped his horse.
"Good day sir." said the young man upon the horse.
"And a good day to you." Not wanting to bring about any suspicion or undesirable questions, Theodyne quickly created a story. "My young man, I spent all night drinking in a tavern and apparently wandered into the wilds. Might you tell me where I am?"
With a bit of a laugh the young man explained, "Only a a few miles from Chorrol sir, a pint too many at The Grey Mare I presume?"
"More like three too many by the aching in my head." Theodyne laughed. "Which way is Chorrol?"
The young boy pointed east, "That way sir, only a couple miles. You should be there well before nightfall."
"Thank you very much young man." Theodyne waved as he began walking eastward towards Chorrol and as soon as the stranger was out of sight, he immediately turned west towards Hammerfell. He aimed to return to his council, but what would he tell them? He hated the thought of lying to his friends, especially Alator. Just the thought of deceiving him pained him greatly. But he knew he could not tell them the truth. He began thinking of what he would tell them. After all, what COULD he tell them. He didn't even remember how he arrived in Tamriel. How would he explain such an absence. It was at least a weeks ride from the ruins. Which meant at least another weeks ride, but he did not have a horse. Which meant he had plenty of time to think over what he would say when he saw his brothers again. Theodyne still had some friends in Hammerfell just outside of Dragonstar. He would make for their home and hopefully obtain a horse. And so knowing he would have to lie to the closest thing he had to a family, he set out on his way home with a heavy heart. One foot in front of the other......