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Cleric Journal: Day Forty



The rain started again just after the moon set. It was one of those slow rains, almost a misting. It lay like a clammy blanket over the world and sapped the heat from the body. The night was cooler than most and I had my cloak wrapped tightly about myself.

Liz liked the rain just fine, so I was considering waking her and catching some sleep when the most god awful sound erupted from the swamp. I’m not sure how far away it was, maybe a mile. Likely closer. It was a roaring like the worst storm you ever heard, only there was rage and hate in that roar. The sound drove me to my knees in sheer terror. Brother Charles fell off the perch I’d built for him and he hit the raft, stunned and shaking. I blinked three times, trying to get my brain to focus. Sister Liz lay paralyzed near the front of the raft, her limbs rigid and her eyes wide. She was mumbling something my brain wouldn’t register. For that instant, the whole world stopped, frozen. You remember how we all felt when the east tower collapsed and killed all those people, including Sister Edna? Remember how the dust choked us and we couldn’t breathe? How the sheer terror of it all froze us in place, stunned and disbelieving. Like that only worse. Way, way worse.

Then thunder rocked the night and lightning cracked across the sky. For an instant the fear was gone and I drew in a ragged breath. Before my next, Brother Charles had launched himself into the air with a screech, beating his wings like they were on fire, and disappeared in the night.

Liz sat bolt upright, sniffed the air once and tried to stand. She swooned, falling to her knees and caught herself against the side of the cook pot. (Remember the one we brought onto the raft? That one. Man, I had some good foresight sometimes.)

For a moment all I could see of her eyes were the whites. I managed to bring my hands up to either side of my head as a second, closer roar echoed across the sky above us. There for a few heartbeats I blacked out, no memory, just blind panic and paralyzing fear. Just when I thought that roar would split my head in two, the night was rent with another clap of thunder and a great winged shadow stood out against the black of the night, illuminated as lightning struck once more.

I gulped in air, gibbering. The creature was huge against the sky, a great winged and scaled nightmare. Finally the word Liz had been saying broke through my clouded brain. Dragon!

As I was already on my knees I called upon the great Semaunya (may she have better bladder control than I had). The world held nothing but fear and death.

“We are destroyed,” I whispered.

“Shelter,” Liz barked at me. “You must find shelter.”

That’s when the rain changed and the first sizzling drops hit the raft. It was no longer cool water, but something far more horrifying. It burned. Not like fire, but acid.

Liz rolled off the raft and hit the water as my clothing started to melt off me. Funny enough, the burning cleared my head and I was able to think clearly in what I assumed would be my last few moments of life.

I took about one second to assess the situation and was struck with a brilliant plan. I stepped to the middle of the raft, kicked aside one of the flat stones that kept the stew pot from rolling, then pulled it over, ducking under it in one swift motion.

Just like that I was squatted under the iron cauldron , out of the rain of acid. Unfortunately the cauldron didn’t stop the acid from eating the raft out from around me. I was just starting to register the pain of my burning skin when the raft broke apart and I fell into the water, pushed down by the weight of the iron cauldron.

I know at this moment you are probably wondering how it is I survived. It is a harrowing tale, which I’ll tell you on the morrow. For now, suffice to say I’m quite exhausted and need to sleep.

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What I'm Reading


D&D 5E Player’s Handbook


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The wild ox; strength and power.


Creativity; words, music, and art.


The troll cross; wealth and prosperity.


The sun; energy, honor, guidance.


Personally earned or lucky wealth and prosperity.


The harvest; patience and promise.


The chariot; journey and travel.

Note: This is not the real book cover.