We are still waiting for Bolton to recover, but to be honest the rest of us need the respite as well. Bantish has already gathered more supplies than I would have guessed possible. He has promised to teach us more about those items, along with more lessons of the jungle tonight. His manner is steady, sage. It is hard to resist trusting the little savage.
I am getting anxious to continue our mission. I plan to ask Bantish more about Salisir tonight. He knows the name, and I hope that he points us in the right direction. He watches us closely, and though he never appears hostile I can sense that he is always ready for confrontation. I look forward to leaving his unyielding stare behind.
In the meantime I will insert some more of my notes tonight.
-Salisir and the Scourge-
It doesn’t matter how high you rise as a hero. It only takes one catastrophic fall to be remembered as anything else.
Brin Salisir was just such a dying star, destined to burn before he had ever fully risen. His voyage over the Highridge Mountains was long in coming. For though the Tetrarch recruited him he was not allowed to make the trek without their blessing. He first had to become a member of the order.
I realize you aren’t familiar with what all this entails, so I’ll do my best to summarize what I am at liberty to share. The seven year training period has no formal name beyond “the School,” although its participants have given it many names. We knew it as the Scourge. It remains an accurate portrayal to this day.
Salisir was one of the oldest people to enter the Scourge, as most raised within the Tetrarch begin it at age twelve. This is their final indoctrination into discipline. Salisir was nearly twice the age of his classmates.
He had little mind for discipline, and less for authority. He had been tolerated in the ranks of the Chaplaincy only for his proficiency in finding and releasing Daedra. He would not be tolerated by the Tetrarch, not in how he carried himself at that point. They would try to break him.
It is debated to this day who broke who, but I tend to think that they reached some sort of shattered stalemate.
The first year of the Scourge is the worst. Not because it is the most physically trying, or the most dangerous, but because it is the year you lose yourself.
From sleep deprivation to absolute physical exhaustion, you are beaten and you are driven until you begin to forget who you are. Whether it’s through drills, or the endless recitation of oaths and creeds, your mind is steadily wiped clean. Then you are tested, and wiped again.
Salisir would not break.
This is known beyond the reaches of his school simply because it is otherwise unheard of. Rather than break, Salisir became more resilient. Harder. Members of the Tetrarch still use him as a gauge of stubbornness to this day.
There came a point at which his instructors resigned themselves to let him persist in his free mind, so long as he didn’t disrupt the training of the rest. They needed him, and they knew it, but they resented him for it.
Salisir resented them yet more.
The seven years of the Scourge carried on much as it otherwise would, with Salisir excelling in violence and failing miserably in subservience. The Tetrarch commanded the lives of its members. Every member but one.
The fateful day finally came when Salisir crossed his bloodline. He took his final oaths, slit his forearm, and gave up any formal rights to himself. He did this only so he might have his chance at a Daemon rumored to be ravaging the Great Wastes. The Tetrarch only accepted him for this shared purpose.
The day finally came when Salisir was to cross the Highridge Mountains. They gave him a small army. He refused more than a squadron. They commanded him to take the Cindron Pass. Salisir took an unmarked trail through the mountains.
There’s not much known about Salisir’s first mission as a Tetrarch. What is known is that he is the only man of the forty in his squad to have returned. The Daemon he sought had been little more than a rumor, but whatever it was he found had somehow been darker in nature. Brin Salisir returned alive, but changed for the worse.
It was that change that inevitably led to his exile, and his exile that eventually led to my own.