Disclaimer: The recognizable characters appearing in this story are © Wizards of the Coast, Inc., all rights reserved. They are used without permission and for entertainment purposes only. No profit is being made by the author for writing this story. No infringement upon nor challenge to the rights of the copyright holders is intended; nor should any be inferred.

Author's Note: This story takes place within the time when Drizzt was with Montolio DeBrouche, and within the seven years before he found a home at Icewind Dale.

Kindred Spirits, by Ssin'urn Solen

Chapter 1: The Prodigal Returns

It had been many years since Solonund Brasher had been able to visit his old mentor, Montolio DeBrouche, and he was looking forward to the visit.

Solonund wore his hair was in a topknot, woven with small vines of ivy, making his hair seem more green than ash blonde. Two small braids, with beads and feathers entwined in them hung down from his left temple. His pale green eyes sparkled. His shirt wrapped around, like those from the far east. He carried an eastern style sword at his side. A bow was slung over his shoulder and a quiver of arrows was strapped to his back. He may have looked like he was ready for a fight, but the Elven ranger had no fighting on his mind. He had many stories to share and, for once, plenty of time to share them.

Because Solonund did not know where to look for Montolio, he asked a friend in Silverymoon for directions. The directions he received were vague. Once Solonund sorted out the details, he realized he knew exactly where to go.

He whistled a tune he had learned in KaraTur as he walked nearer to Montolios grove.

His mood was soured by the smell of orcs on the path ahead. Solonund's instincts went into action as he slowly crept up on the small group.

"Graul say we need kill Drow and old man and I is tired of waiting." one of the trio grunted out.

"Drow!" Solonund thought nervously," If Drow lay a hand on father, there will be blood spilt."

Solonund hid, listened and watched as a winter wolf padded its way into the camp.

"Uh-oh, this doesn't look good," He thought.

"Caroak," an orc croaked out," what take you so long? Graul want the Drow and old man."

The wolf sniffed at the orcs and seemed to speak, "Never mind, we will have them soon enough. I have gathered the worgs for the flank. You know what to do."

Solonund breathed a silent sigh of relief. Perhaps the putrid stench of the orcs gave him the advantage of not being scented. He snuck around to where the orcs casually tossed their garbage and rubbed himself with it.

Once satisfied that he could not be smelled easily by worg or wolf, he continued to make his way to Montolio's grove.

Solonund crawled on his belly and inched his way. He knew that there would be traps. Montolio always had traps set up in case of danger. He kept his senses alert for them.

Once he sighted the grove, he was surprised at what he saw. The Drow was not attacking Montolio, but defending him against the score of orcs. So stunned he was at this sight, that he did not notice the winter wolf quietly following behind him, leading a pack of worgs.

Suddenly, a huge black panther leaped over Solonund. He rolled over onto his back in order to defend himself from the beast. Once on his back, he saw the wolf with its accursed horde. The panther pounced on the wolf's back and went quickly to work. Solonund followed the lead of the panther by pulling out his bow and firing at as many of the filthy worgs as he could.

The panther had saved Solonund's life and he was not about to let the cat be overwhelmed because of his own brash stupidity. He followed the wolf and the worgs as they chased the panther up a tree. Solonund saw that the panther had things well in hand when he saw the winter wolf fall limp. He ran back towards the grove to help Montolio and his strange new companion.

He was stopped short by an arrow whizzing by his ear.

"Solonund," a voice shouted, "let them handle the fray down there. We need you here."

Solonund looked up and saw Kellindil.

Kellindil and his cousin were firing off arrows at the worgs. Solonund knew the fewer worgs to attack the grove, the better. Kellindil was right. He needed to stay there for the moment.

"Come Solonund, our prey lies elsewhere. We must prevent Graul from sending in more to overwhelm them. It is good to see you after so long."

"Orcs are not that smart," Solonund replied.

"I know, but I have the mastermind of this supposed slaughter at my camp. I may need some of your special persuasional skills to help."

"Alright, but I need to cover our trail."

Solonund kept plugging arrows into the worgs until the panther leaped gingerly across a ravine. As he made his way to Kellindil's camp he encountered frightened orcs heading towards the grove. He made short work of them easily with his sword.

**********

Solonund found Kellindil's camp, and it was empty. He saw dog prints and human footprints in the dirt that were fairly fresh, but none of his friend's footprints. But, Solonund could smell Kellindil. He followed his nose to Kellindil's hastily dug grave.

Tearfully, he re-arranged Kellindil's body into a more dignified position and re-buried his friend. He said a prayer to Meilikki, told his friend goodbye, and headed to the grove.

Solonund's spirits lifted when he heard Montolio's laughter. This was a holiday, a homecoming, he would leave the gloomy business for later, when it was more appropriate.

Drizzt froze as he heard a strange bird call pierce the air. Instinctively, his hands went for his weapons, but Montolio placed his hand on Drizzt's shoulder and signaled him to be quiet and listen.

Another whistle pierced the air, and with its sound, a tear ran down Montolio's face.

"He came back," Montolio whispered softly.

"Who?"

"My son has come home."

Solonund came slowly into view. Montolio rushed toward him before Solonund could utter a word.

"Father, it is so good to see you, I have missed you terribly," Solonund said as he wrapped his arms around Montolio.

"Drizzt, this is my son, Solonund. Solonund, this is Drizzt DoUrden."

Solonund held out his hand in friendship to the strange Drow who had helped his father.

Drizzt looked at the young surface elf quizzically as he said," A pleasure to meet you."

"Come, boys, " Montolio said as he put his arms around the two younger ones' shoulders," We can clean up this mess out here later. I'm hungry."

**********

Drizzt was surprised at how almost giddy Montolio was over this surface elf. There was no possible way this young man could be Montolio's son, yet they shared a bond that was not unlike he and Zaknafein shared. Drizzt had to force himself to not resent this surface elf who came claiming he was Mooshie's son.

"Drizzt, stop brooding. This is a celebration. My Solonund has come home to me."

"I'm not brooding."

Montolio stopped and looked in Drizzt's direction. Drizzt knew those blind eyes could see right through him."

"Oh, I see. You are jealous. This is the first person since you came here that shows a closeness to me that is like your closeness to me. There is no need. I am not going to play favorites with my two 'foster children.' There is no need. Meilikki looks after all of us equally, so my fondness for ones I hold dear should be equal as well."

"Are you getting tired, father?"

"Yes, Solonund, I am. All of the dancing around today has left me somewhat sore. I need to sleep it off. Good night you two." Montolio said as he made his way to his bed.

Solonund and Drizzt stared at each other for what seemed like an eternity before Drizzt broke the silence.

"Its a warm night, lets go outside, " Drizzt said.

"Alright," Solonund replied.

They lay on their backs outside looking at the stars for several minutes before Solonund spoke.

"I saw you fight alongside father. Thank you for helping him."

Drizzt turned on his side and looked at Solonund, " Where were you?"

"On that little crag hill to the north. I was nearly ambushed by a winter wolf and some worgs when this black panther jumped over me and onto the wolf. I thought it was very strange. I have never seen a panther this far west." Solonund replied, his eyes still on the sky of stars peeking out from the clouds.

"Guenhwyvar,"

"Hmm?"

"Guenhwyvar, her name is Guenhwyvar. She is my friend."

"I see. I must find your friend then and thank her. She saved my life."

"How are you Montolio's son? You are an elf."

"Ah, now that is the question I have been waiting for you to ask. I suppose the closest way to describe it is that he is my step-father. My mother, Willwaren and Montolio were adventurers together, and lovers, before she was murdered. He is the only person that my mother ever truly loved with all of her heart, besides me."

Drizzt thought of his own father and asked," How was she murdered?"

Solonund turned his head to Drizzt. "She was protecting me from my birth father, who was trying to kill me."

Drizzt nodded. Perhaps he and Solonund were not very different.

"If you have spent enough time above ground to learn the common tongue, then I know that father has taught you not to bottle up your past. So I will tell you." Solonund said in Drow.

Drizzt sat quickly upright at hearing his language. "You speak Drow?"

"Yes, but that is a story for another time. You asked me about my past, and I am not called 'The Brasher' for nothing. First things are first," Solonund said softly as he sat up to meet Drizzt's gaze.

"I was born in the forest not too far from here to a tribe of wild elves. My birth father, Kordon, was the leader of the tribe. My mother was his slave. Although my mother never told me what she did to make Kordon so angry, it was bad enough for him to claim her as property, an animal, not a person. She was a sun elf, so it is likely she was completely ignorant of her 'crime' against Kordon, but she was punished for it anyway."

"It seems like these wild elves are much like the Drow," Drizzt commented.

"Not so, most are relatively peaceful. Kordon turned his back on nature and chose to follow an evil god. Anyway, although my mother's name was Willwaren, Kordon called her nothing but Sainarcooshie, which literally means desired dog, but connotes a toy for sexual pleasures. Kordon called me Natcooshie'pira, which means little dog thing. Despite the fact that I was his own flesh and blood, to Kordon' I was just another animal. He tried to leave me in the wilderness to die because he thought I was blind. I have to admit, my eyes are very pale."

"Life is not held in much regard in the Underdark, especially for males. I know the cruelty of being treated like an animal." Drizzt replied.

"We tried to escape several times, but until I was better able to defend myself, we were unsuccessful. The last straw came after my sister was born. Neither I nor my mother know which one of the tribe males was her father, because my mother was raped and molested on a regular basis. They fondled me from time to time as well, but mainly left me alone because I was the only one coming back to camp with a decent catch every time.

Mother was caring for my baby sister when Kordon called for her to come attend him. Mother told Kordon she would be with him when she was finished cleaning the little girl. That day we were camping beside a large river. Kordon marched over and roughly grabbed my sister. As she wailed and cried, Kordon threw her into the rapid current. A moment later, my sister's cries ceased forever. His excuse for the action was that the tribe was starving and they did not need to be keeping puppies that could not fend for themselves. My mother sat there with my sister's diaper still in her hand, frozen from the shock."

Drizzt, began to wipe his eyes, not realizing that he was crying. He was crying for Solonund's sister, who never had a chance to grow up. His mind went to the child he saved the first time he saw the surface. He wondered what became of that child.

"Whenever we got a chance away from the tribe, mother practiced with weapons. She encouraged me to use the bow and be the best I could at it. She named me Solonund, after the god Solonor Thelandria."

"Which god is he?" Drizzt asked.

"He is the Elven god of archery and the forest. My mother told me that her family were famed archers."

"Have you met any of your mother's family?"

"No, I have searched, but I have not found any of them. It is possible that Kordon's tribe killed them. I am not sure how large my mother's family was."

"It is very possible if your mother had a small family. It has been my observation that the evil prefer to catch their prey off guard. Drow are taught that from the time they can lift a weapon." Drizzt replied.

"We finally made our escape while Kordon and his tribe were distracted by a group of wolves. We were long gone by the time Kordon noticed we were missing. My mother became an adventurer and I was her student. I loved my mother very much. I remember how happy she was once a season had passed and Kordon had still not found us. She had changed from the sullen, empty and frightened slave to a bright, cheerful and brave person.

We met Montolio DeBrouche and his band of adventurers in Sundabar. They allowed us to just travel with them at first, until they saw my mother's skill with the bow. Over the years Montolio and mother grew close, and became lovers. It was then that Montolio encouraged me to call him father. In truth, he is the only real father figure I had. And that was the way it was. I became Montolio's son."

"You are lucky to have him as a father."

"Drizzt," Solonund said, " he is your foster father too. He said it before going to bed. You have not told me whether you had a good father or not, but while you are here, you are Montolio's son. That makes you my brother. It does not matter how different we look, looks are deceiving. Because the man who accepted me as his son accepted you, you are my brother. As far as I am concerned, you will always be my brother, because we have the same father. I know I am talking in circles, but do you understand?"

Drizzt got a look of gladness and shock as he said," Yes, I think I do."

Solonund reached over and embraced his new brother, and Drizzt returned the hug.

"It stinks of dead orc out here, lets go inside and rest," Solonund said.

"Not until you finish your story, my brother. I know it is sad, but I know you need to get it out of your system. You would not have told me what you did just now if it didn't." Drizzt replied curtly.

"Very well. It happened fourteen years ago. Mother and I had been adventuring alongside father for nearly twenty years. Father was growing gracefully older, mother grew more beautiful with her long youth still in bloom. Despite that, their love for each other never wavered. Father taught me how to use a sword so I could defend myself in close combat. Once I felt that I had mastered it enough, I became very cocky. That is when I earned the name, Brasher, because father said I was brasher than most he had ever seen.

The day my mother dreaded came. Kordon decided to come and collect 'his property' again and was not going to take no for an answer. He ambushed us. Two of our companions died fighting off those evil wild elves, but more of Kordon's tribe fell. I was so lividly angry, I got right in Kordon's face and told him to go to hell where he belonged. I was so focused on my rage, that I failed to see Kordon weaving a spell. Mother saw it and pushed me out of the way. She lasted a few minutes, and died in my arms. Kordon was angry, because his 'property' was now dead. He had no interest in me. He had planned to kill me from the start, so my mother would follow willingly. He began to weave another spell but he was interrupted. Father came up behind him and stabbed him in the back, straight through to Kordon's evil heart. Once he pulled out his sword, father was horrified at what he had done. He had killed someone without the chance of defense. It did not matter that Kordon deserved what he got, but it still disturbed father. When he stabbed Kordon, he did not know that mother had been killed. I told him what happened, but it was no consolation. Father was crushed by mother's death, and horrified that he killed a person in cold blood. Life alongside father was difficult after that. He kept taking on nearly hopeless jobs. It was several years before he started acting slightly like himself.

Eight years ago, we had an argument. He was angry at the way I was wooing a female elf. I got angry and left. It was really nothing to fight about. I only recently had the time and courage to seek father out. "

Drizzt thought back on the fight he had with Zaknafein after his first trip to the surface. He remembered the pain he felt at his father's rejection.

"That story is done, Drizzt. Perhaps tomorrow I will tell you how I traveled the Underdark. Lets get inside. One of the few things I did inherit from Kordon was his extra keen sense of smell. The stench out here is nauseating."

Drizzt smirked and patted Solonund on the head as they rose to go inside. Solonund returned the physical remark by slapping Drizzt's shoulder, and laughing.

***********

Author's Note: I know Drizzt is not in this chapter much. The story is primarily based on one of my epic level DnD characters. But, that does not mean Drizzt is not important to the plot. Please Review.