The freshly stoked fire threw off a stifling heat and the flames licked the walls with eerie red shadow. I sat near the hearth trying to warm the chill that kept me from my writings, but I knew it was useless – the wind was fierce, clearing way for the coming storm, and the tower swirled with ghostly gusts of cold that seemed to moan and laugh as they burrowed down to bone. Death lurks closest on such nights.
As the flames fell lower my head did as well. I faded off to a troubled sleep.
Dreams of sleeping dragons and music of the Gods.
I woke confused. Lost. The tower seemed to tremble beneath me, at first I thought it imaginary, an after effect of such powerful dreaming, but it persisted, became louder, more defined, the vibration changing steadily but almost too slowly to notice. I stood.
An otherworldly tone rang from all directions. The tower itself, every stone, shook with a vibration rising from the very pillars of the Earth. And it just as suddenly stopped.
I had not moved, could not. The sudden silence crushed me.
“Samuel!” I cried and rushed from my chambers.
The dim torchlight did little to light the passages, and I damned my haste for rushing me along without my lamp as I made my way down to the bowels of the tower. The night did not reach these lower levels, but there was a different sort of oppression in the air down there – the odor of old air and ancient earth sent the mind into a past far before it