The unlikely circumstances of my birth are looking more and more reasonable by the day. There was a time when poverty made me question why my mother would ever leave her family. Now that I know Alibakkar as more than wealthy merchants I find myself having something of a preference for my Tallstag heritage. As I walk through yet another cloud of unspeakable insects, I realize it is not the danger or even the inconvenience that has caused these thoughts. It is Alibakkar’s methods that fuel my regrets.
I expect to survive. Mercenaries may spend every coin because odds are it is their last, but adventurers need a certain optimism to maintain their path. It is a foolish practice, but we feel that our past survival has a great impact on our future enterprises. I suppose at a point a feeling of immortality is hard to suppress. Survival is well and good of course, but those who die get to skip the introspective thoughts that come after any given venture. The part where we learn to justify robbing tombs, “What were the dead doing with it anyways,” the part where we wonder why we survived, but our companions or at least the previous adventurers indicated by the bones we step over, did not. For some of us it was the victory that tested our mettle more than the adventure itself. A few of my companions quit not from fear that the next venture would be their last, but from the knowledge that they would do wrong and have to just go on living with themselves. I always considered myself better at this part than even the adventure itself.
I have justified a lot, done things that I do not believe a Tallstag has yet done. I have learned that a strong ale can make right and wrong seems a thin line, and it is of little importance should a man stagger across it so long as he ultimately stays on the right end of it more often. I’m not sure I can drink enough for this. I’m not sure which is worse, to live knowing I was wrong, or to convince myself I wasn’t.