His fire magic kept him warm in the cold mountains, but it seemed to Seryth that it was just a little bit hotter, just a little bit wilder than it normally was when he summoned it…
He returned to Kharanos with the trolls dead and the meat and shimmerweed in tow. The dwarves gave him a feast in thanks, and Seryth went to bed with a bellyache and a sore head. He dropped off quickly into sleep, reflecting that he could always tell his father that the harvest had taken longer than usual to sell, hence his being away for a few days instead of the couple he had promised…
The next morning he was on the road again with his ram and the imp and a large supply of beer basted boar ribs…
The delivery was made and the fee for it paid. Still he was a little short, so Seryth agreed to look into the local kobold problem for the dwarves. He did his best to ignore the imp supplementing his fire bolts with some of its own…
“You’re distracted,” said the imp.
“You’re distracting,” Seryth replied waspishly. He rubbed his chest. The claw-prick the imp had given him had scabbed over. It wasn’t a very big cut to begin with, but it still throbbed. “It seems like the kobolds are controlling the troggs in the area,” he finally said, changing the subject.
“Troggs are stupid. Not like imps,” said the imp.
“Perhaps I can figure out how to control YOU in the same way,” Seryth retorted. To his surprise, the imp didn’t take offense, but only grinned.
It was a gnoll leading the kobolds. Seryth uneasily thought back to his encounter with the beasts in Elwynn Forest while the dwarves told him to bring the news to their supervisors in Thelsamar.
The dwarven supervisor wasn’t terribly impressed by the finding. The gnolls had been displaced from the Wetlands, he said, along with murlocs, and there had been rumors of cultist saboteurs who had destroyed the great dam. The dwarves in Loch Modan apparently had a lot of problems, but…Seryth was past due returning home.
He wondered what responsibility he might have to these people as he entered the tavern for a bite to eat. The barmaid offered him some of Thelsamar’s famous blood sausages, but he declined.
He looked under the table to see the green eyes of the imp — now a cat again — watching him.
“You’re going to try and tempt me away from following my father’s orders to return home, aren’t you? It’d be a suitably evil and chaotic thing to do, wouldn’t it?” Seryth asked it sarcastically.
The imp-cat’s fangs glistened as it opened its mouth in a grin. “Nothing of the sort, actually.”
“Why would you take advice from me?” said the imp-cat. “But if you want it, here it is. The more you fight, the more your power grows. The more your power grows, the more you can help people like these dwarves against their enemies. Think about it.”
“I’m thinking about kicking you across the room,” Seryth hissed. He was now more determined to return home, if only to spite the imp, but he couldn’t deny it had made a good argument. It was maybe the right thing to help these people, but it was what a demon wanted, so could it really be right…?
Once he had eaten, Seryth utltimately turned his ram in and booked a trip back to Westfall with the gryphon master. The imp-cat hitched a ride inside his pack.