The next morning, Raistlin and I awoke later than planned, and hurriedly got dressed before opening the screen door to reveal it snowing outside.
We shared a look, but braved the biting wind and made it to the meeting Tanis had told us about. I knew that Tanis and the others were deciding whether or not to leave, and where they could go, as they had tried the day before.
Raistlin led the way to Hederick's cave, and shoved the woven screen aside before allowing me through. My hands were shaking from cold, and I had to clench my jaw to keep my teeth from chattering. I shuffled over to the fire, trying to warm my hands.
"It is snowing," Raistlin announced.
I heard Sturm mutter something to Tanis, but I was still too cold to care. Raistlin stood beside me, also trying to warm himself.
"Continue on, Half-Elven. You were about to say something about the Dwarven kingdom?"
Tanis sighed, but nodded reluctantly, "I was thinking that we may be able to find refuge with the dwarves."
"My people will not be willing, Tanis," Riverwind said.
"I am not going to stay with dwarves!" Hederick yelled, "Present company excluded, of course," He turned to Flint and bowed.
I rolled my eyes, but stayed silent. Maritta loudly demanded attention; "Now, you drink dwarf spirits and take their money when they go to your shops," She turned to Tanis, "What would you have us do? We cannot wander around the side of a mountain, but nor can we wait here. I will go to Thorbardin, but not until we know we can stay."
"The key to Thorbardin lies in Skullcap," Raistlin murmured.
"Skullcap, Raistlin, what is that?"
"Flint can tell you more than I, Half-Elven. I have only read a little about it."
Everyone in the room looked at Flint, who was whittling away at a piece of wood. Chips were flying everywhere and Flint resolutely at the floor. After a pause, he flung the wood to the ground, "I'll tell you about Skullcap. You humans are generations removed from the Cataclysm, but my Grandfather lived through it. We traded with the humans and elves, until the Cataclysm struck. We went to our cousins beneath the mountain for help, but they shut the gates on us. We allied ourselves with an evil wizard, Fistandantilus."
Raistlin shot me a glance from under his hood, and I raised an eyebrow in return. I won't tell anyone.
"War raged between both sides, and many were lost. We were dreadfully outnumbered, and desperate, but were clearly losing. When the wizard heard the news of the battle, he flew into a mad rage and released a magical blast and destroyed his fortress. He didn't want anyone to have it."
Sturm snorted, "He was likely insane."
"There are many things that we call Fistandantilus, but 'insane' is not one of them," I interrupted softly, "He was one of the greatest mages to ever live."
"He also wore the black robes," Flint growled.
"Just because someone is allied to Nuitari does not mean they are insane!" Raistlin hissed, eyes flashing.
I glared at him, but nodded, "He may not have used methods that were saintlike, but his ways got results, something not many mages achieve nowadays."
Maritta coughed loudly, trying to steer us back into the original topic, "This doesn't help us, though-"
"It does," I said softly, "We send Tanis and Flint to see if they can find Thorbardin. Raistlin and I will go to Skullcap."
"Caramon will accompany you, just in case something happens."
"We may not be able to spare a journey to Skullcap-" Elistan started.
"There is an entrance nearby," Raistlin said, everyone stopped and stared.
"How do you know?"
"I know something of Fistandantilus. He would not have made a fortress without several escape routes."
"That doesn't prove anything!"
"Hold!" Tanis yelled, rubbing his eyes. Everyone looked at him, "I agree with Nekitha. Flint and I will go to Thorbardin."
"He will?" Flint demanded.
"He will," Tanis replied forcefully. Flint huffed, but said nothing, "I apologize, Raistlin, but we can't risk going to Skullcap," Tanis thought for a moment, "Elistan and Hederick can take care of the refugee's well being, but they need someone who can take care of everything else. I think that Riverwind should be this leader."
I smirked, but said nothing. I looked aver at Raistlin, who looked angry that he had been dismissed so easily. I bit my tongue, but tried to pay attention to the rest of the meeting.
"I agree!" Hederick announced. Tanis and Elistan shared a glance of confusion before they both realized that Hederick was simply getting rid of the elf and dwarf. The rest of the meeting passed quickly, with Tanis and Flint setting off the next morning.
I walked with Raistlin back to our cave. I sighed, "You still want to go to Skullcap, don't you?"
"Of course, Tanis may as well bang the dwarf's head against the side of the mountain for all the good it will do them."
I nodded, "I'll go fill up our waterskins. Do we have any food?"
"I'll sneak into the kitchens, too," I went over to our packs, and picked up our waterskins, "I'll be back soon."
I went to the stream outside, and filled the waterskins. I slung them over my shoulders, and went to the kitchens, which were surprisingly empty. I grabbed a pack, and started filling it with cheese, bread, and dried meat. I made my way back to the cave, and put everything away.
I turned to find Raistlin under the pile of blankets, sleeping. I slipped off my boots, and crawled under the blankets with him. I snuggled closer to him, trying to absorb his warmth. I shut my eyes and fell asleep.
I awoke sometime later, feeling very warm, and happy. Shifting a little, I realized someone's arm was draped over my waist. I smiled and nestled in closer to Raistlin.
Who would ever think that he's a snuggler?
Author's note: Aha! Another chapter done! I know that these are kind of short, but I'm more interested in updating, not length. School is in full swing, but I want to update by my birthday- the 18th.
I do not own Dragonlance, so don't sue me!