Eddrick travels south, away from the dwarven settlements. He spends a large amount of money because he purchases the fastest way(s) to get out of the area. He gets out of gold dwarf lands, just to find mountain dwarves, and then to find hill dwarves. He gets very sick of trying to get away from dwarves and figures if he keeps going south (into the human lands) he would be about as far away as he can get. He starts to run out of money, so he travels on his own on the major roadways.
One day he is walking in the pouring rain and finds a stone building made of at least 10 pillars and a pitched roof. At first, he is struck by the stonework of the place; it’s one contiguous piece of stone. He hears a soft woman’s voice behind him, "Can I help you?” Turning around quickly he sees a woman (also soaking wet) with long bright red hair, pale skin, and a strange outfit made entirely of brown scarves. She’s smiling in a very welcoming way, "Would you like to come in and get out of the rain?” She extended her hand to him, it seemed odd, but he took her hand. Quickly he felt warm and dry, while still in the pouring rain. He noticed that the rain didn’t touch her, and while holding her hand, apparently it didn’t hit him either. “Nice, I need to learn that trick,” she laughed and led him into the building. It was warm, dry and inviting despite being mostly open. There was a tall stone slab in the middle with a symbol on it and niches in the sides that held food. Across from the slab was a stone bench; she sat on it and beckoned him to do the same. She asked if he wanted some food after she prayed; starving, he quickly agreed.
She prayed, in her lap was a huge plate of food, yet she looked upset. She told Eddrick that this was a temple of Fharlanghn, open to any travel, and that she was his priestess. She then explained that she had asked for food for both of them, but Fharlanghn would not grant her request. She had then asked Fharlanghn why he chose to do that; she learned that he would not directly help nor hurt this ‘creature’. He does not exist, he cannot be seen, and not something he would want to help perpetuate. Therefore, he made food for her; the choice to share would be her own. She told Eddrick that while Fharlanghn was not going to do anything about it; some of the less ‘reasonable’ deities would not be so forgiving. She warned him to stay away from the large temples; least he be seen as a threat. She gave him the food, transferred some of her ability to resist the elements, and left. Best night sleep he ever had.
Not long after that, Eddrick discovers one of the best ways to travel cheaply; caravans. Sadly, they are FAR from uniform. Some are awful, filled with people who are jerks, and others are more pleasant. Sometimes he has to pay, other times he can trade his skills for the ride. One day, before he selects another caravan, he thinks that maybe he can change his fate on this like the book taught him how to do with gambling. So, he gives the idea a go; he winds himself up like before and lets it go. He picks the first one he sees. Heck, either it worked or he got lucky. Joined a musical group who didn’t charge him a thing, just trade for blacksmithing; heck they even fed them. After two days, one of the young lads finds him and tells him that one of the performers, Lyeren Treemeld.
He went to see him, a high elf in a long, flowing red robe. He smiled at Eddrick, and told him that they were the same; would he be willing to learn? He gave him Eddrick a small performance on a bone flute. He summoned the whole group, he played and did other things at the same time, he had the flute play itself, and he showed how to suggest things to others. When he let them go, he asked Eddrick to do the same. Of course, he could only do a fraction of what he had seen. When everyone left, Lyeren told him there was much, much more to learn.
A whole week went fast, Eddrick was a fast learner. At this point, Eddrick knew this elf to be more than what is seem; a powerful gut feeling. Lyeren, somewhat out of character, said he knew Eddrick was ‘different’; he could feel his presence that first time and he was immune to Lyeren’s magic. They made a trade. Lyeren explained he was not an elf, but a Fey from the Unseelie plane of fairies. Fey have 5 names, and one of them can be used to summon them from any other plane. He was in hiding, so to speak, since he went to deliver something and never came back. He explained he was a type of fey called the Banshrae. They had been exiled for so long they grew content with it; because of this, they had become less like the other chaotic fey. Then, they were forced back into servitude. He ran before anyone could force out his names, so they could not make him return. He was willing to give his summon name to Eddrick, as long as it would only be used when specified by him (via dominated fairy) and that he summon would not have any strings attached. In return, he would teach Eddrick everything and anything he knew. The deal was agreed upon, forever binding and the name Droaam forever his to know.
Over the last weeks of the caravan, Eddrick learned everything he could about magic/religion/planes/his powers. It was the beginning of understanding. He was still chewing on the info he had learned when he picked his next caravan at random; but not using any influence. He ended up with a group of definitively unfriendly humans. He was starting to get pretty far south and so it rained quite a bit (Seemed like always to Eddrick). The group always sent him out to find dry wood. He grumbled, but did it. When he came back, he felt ‘something’ in the camp; it matched Lyeren’s description of what he felt when Eddrick first showed up.
He approached as if nothing was wrong, only to find everyone dead. Up the road was a huge, ephemeral looking lion. It seemed surprised; you can see me? was a female voice in his head.
“Well yeah, you do stand out. You kill them?”
“No, I would’ve eaten them.”
“This is not putting me at ease you know. So, if not you, then who?”
" Zanth. He will be back soon; I think he went to look for you."
“I see, and why me?”
He heard a chuckle behind him. “It’s because you are unique.” Zanth stood there, smiling, we need to go Trinity ; obviously referring to the lion. “Think he can ride you?”
She stammered, “He can TRY if he wants, but shouldn’t that, well, really HURT him?”
Zanth grinned, showing his razor teeth, “Ready to try Eddrick? And yes, we know your name, it’s not like we pick up random dwarves; well other than to eat or torture. He laughed. Your choice, try to ride Trinity or I carry you. I’m not fond of carrying people.”
Eddrick decided to try option 1. Trinity got up real close to him, she seemed surprised yet again. She stretched out on the ground and let him climb up. She then hovered straight into the air, next to where Zanth had already flown up.
He seemed really pleased with himself. Then he flew forward, then into a circle, stopping where he had started. He shoved his claws into the sky, which now seemed strangely solid, and ripped the sky off almost like it was paper. Through the huge doorway was a blizzard so thick that nothing else could be seen. Zanth flew up next to him, dangled out a perfectly shaped crystal teardrop on a chain, and simply said “Wear this, now.” He put it on, and through the rabbit hole they went. Once inside, he could see through the blizzard fairly well. It also wasn’t cold, even though it was a wasteland of icebergs and frigid looking water. They didn’t fly far; they stopped on a large glacier. Trinity hunkered down again to let him off; she said simply, north.
He walked north and found that the smaller pillar he saw was actually a huge thing that looked like an ice bug. It told him to sit down, outside the circle; it sat down within it. It said his name was Erridon Alaka and that he was himself as well as the voice of Levistus, the arch-devil of this plane. That he was now in Stygia, the fifth level of The Nine Hells of Baator, and that Levistus was the ruler of this plane. He went on to explain that Levistus was trapped in this glacier by Asmodeus, the official lord of all devils. He had been trapped for thousands of years now in this glacier, and is wishing to be free above all else. All his attempts to gain influence and power had been easily thwarted by Asmodeus; for one of the things Asmodeus possesses are eyes and ears everywhere. An almost uncanny ability to see into the pattern that is magic, and actually come out with knowledge.
Either way, nothing had ever worked. He hoped for his master’s sake, that this might be what they need; a person that did not exist. If the gods themselves did not see you, then what hope does Asmodeus have? In exchange, Eddrick was promised immensurable power, and damn near anything else he wanted now or in the future. He just had to swear loyalty to Levistus and accept his mark. Erridon promised that if he said no, they would allow him to leave safely. But, they would not sit idly by and watch him join the enemy. That would just be foolish.
Eddrick did agree, but only if he got to ‘run the show’ so to speak; obviously the old ideas weren’t working. Erridon nodded in agreement, took the tear pendant away from him, and then told him this would hurt. He was then transported, mentally, to the chamber holding Levistus. It wasn’t exactly a chamber, he just felt himself touching Levistus’s hands while residing in the ice near him. Levistus’s voice was soft yet stern; he confirmed that they would be in a pact. It was a binding pact to bring them freedom; their deepest desires. Eddrick’s hands burned from cold, he felt calm wash him and then consented. His whole body felt rigid, freezing, and the inside of his mouth burned. He could see an image of a rapier shoved into a block of ice; a strange knowledge of its presence inside him mouth. There was a flood of raw power, and he was pushed and pulled back up all at once.
He was sitting with Erridon, but inside the circle now. He was no longer cold, but his hands were cut open skillfully. Zanth and Trinity were also sitting in the circle, behind Erridon; all three of them bleeding into the circle. Erridon apologized about the cuts, but blood was required. Erridon told him to fix it, that he should be able to now. It took several tries, but it did work. The magic felt different, Erridon said it was like a conduit to Levistus, and therefore a different type of magic. He gave Eddrick back the tear pendant; told him that he would need it. The glacier was starting to move too close to settlement, so things were cut short. Erridon told him to ride Trinity back to the material plane.
Erridon opened a similar portal, and the two of them went back through. Trinity took him to a town of some kind, just on the other side of a large river. She said that this was Greenville. She had been instructed not to tell him why this was the right place, instead to let him learn. All she knew about it was that they needed a blacksmith. She told him that she was to be his liaison between the two planes, and that he could use the pendant to call her. She gave a short explanation of how it works and said that it is technically a piece of her due to the nature of its creation. From then on, Eddrick considered it to be Trinity’s Tear. She also explained they left him a few things in his bags for later. He found a familiar and money.