Penlink faces the party with a piercing directness, standing strong and tall for her size. Shrouded with an aura of dutiful passion, she thrusts her goggles to her forehead. Her eyes sparkle with intense sincerity.
The mind-warped fiends we’ve already slaughtered were once proud members of my humbled race. They were as unique and free as any random sampling of our population. They were simply people.
I have seen an infinite quantity of promising prototypes, riveting invention, and dreams first cultivated within the glittery eyes of a child crumble to scrap and metal. But never have I witnessed a project that so stirred the blood of all who indulged in its magnitude fall to a more heartrending detonation. It is this decrepit shadow of a city once immense and thriving in which I have matured and learned, and loved, among families, workshop merchants, pregnant wives, and friends who have interminably engraved themselves into who I’ve grown to become.
My dear friends, you are staring at a possessed corpse that cries for liberation. There was a time when it was alive and breathing, when it was thinking and warm.
I was there.
Those long chapters of my life have forged in me something profound, something inerasable.
Now, half of all these folks, many of whom enlightened me, who I’ve earnestly expressed myself to and cherished, are dead."
Penlink's voice softens as it fractures into a light choke. Half. She inhales deeply, swiftly regaining a steady strength as she continues.
Unless you hold nothing dear to you, it’s irrational to view life as anything other than a priceless entity of indescribable proportions, one to respect and be perpetually grateful. It, and all it encompasses is all we’ve been granted. To say that physical lives were the only intangibles lost however, despite the magnitude of their worth, is ruthless.
The troggs have not only succeeded in a massive genocide, they have brought unprovoked death to thousands of dreams.
They brought death to an incalculably vast sea of potential.
They brought death to creation, community, and love.
A handful of valiant souls courageously remain in Gnomeregan, keeping the troggs at bay and shedding hope on a seemingly hopeless devastation.
The warrior boldly raises her voice.
They do so in the midst of our irradiated kin as they scamper inexorably in what stands as our gear-crafted desert, under the reign of a traitorous madman who calls himself king!
You know me well enough to realize the last cry I would make let alone encourage is that of revenge. This is for what is left of your gnomish allies!
This is for hope and integrity, and for cherished dreams now lost or deferred. This is to see to it that such a catastrophe will never spark from the conspiring network of trogg minds again!
Obviously they’ve long forgotten an unshakable part of who we are that has pushed us to our renowned aptitude.
She firmly juts out her finger. That! That is “stupidly” revisiting a quandary despite even the most disheartening of impediments until we see our efforts jump to life.
Penlink unfastens her mace and promptly raises it above her head, her eyes bright and fierce.
Follow me to righteous regain! On this day my people will be honored and our hopes reborn!
Penlink ‘s voice strengthens.
For kinship, love, and creation!
For rectitude and honor!
The gnome spins around and violently swings her staff toward the entrance, rupturing into a hoarse, thunderous shriek.
Jerking her goggles over her eyes she stampedes inside, channeling her ferocity into intensely concentrated fuel.