The Nightmare's End
I say, aren't you that adventurer who's been exploring the Palace of the Dead? Forename, isn't it? You've caused quite a stir among the men. Indeed, everyone in the Shroud speaks of your daring. Some more favorably than others...
You see, there's this Lalafell who came to Buscarron's Druthers a few days past. He practically lives in the tavern now, always deep in his cups, muttering about dead friends and vengeful spirits. He mentioned your name amidst his ramblings. Several times, in fact.
We usually pay no mind to drunkards at the tavern, but to be frank, he's become something of a nuisance. Perhaps you could speak with him? If the gods are good, you'll catch him in a moment of sobriety.
Please see what you can do about that poor drunken soul. I fear before long he'll anger the other patrons.
Barkeep! Another bottle. The strong stuff this time! How's a man to drown his troubles in this─hic!─tepid piss you call ale? I said─hic!─huh?
Forename...? That the gods would─hic!─deliver you to me a third time! If anyone can help me, surely it's you.
After our ordeal in the Tam–Tara Deepcroft, I tried to return home, but it's no use. Try as I might I cannot stop thinking about her. About Edda...
You saw her!? When? Where?
This...this is her engagement ring! I'd recognize the design anywhere.
She would always keep this in her breast pocket for fear it would get dirty on our outings. Strange that it would find its way to you. Back to this place. Hmmm...
I realize this is sudden, but would you accompany me to the bridge just outside? I'd like you to help me with something.
Thank you for coming. I thought my heart would burst from my chest when I laid eyes on that ring. Would that I could forget the horrors of that damnable crypt. Seems the best I can do is drown them in ale. <sigh> Perhaps this is punishment for the way we treated her.
Every night when I close my eyes I can still see them. Edda with her ghastly grin... And that abomination she dared to call Avere.
The dream is always the same. “We wish to return home,” they tell me. I fear if I don't grant this request, they will haunt me till my dying day.
My first thought was to hold a small remembrance service of sorts to honor them. Then I asked myself: what good would that do without bodies, or even a keepsake?
Then I remembered their engagement rings, a symbol of their innocence and purity, of a time before this calamity befell them. With those in hand, I could do my part to put their souls to rest.
Of course, that would have meant returning to that awful place, to seek out and retrieve the ring from her...from her... <shudder>
I cursed myself for running away the last time we met. If I had stayed, with you at my side, perhaps I could have found the courage to try.
Yet fate has conspired to bring you here, and with Edda's ring! Now we need only find Avere's to complete the set.
Now I know what you're thinking, and no, I will not ask you to accompany me back to the Tam–Tara Deepcroft. Thankfully, that won't be necessary.
You see, the night before our fateful foray into the Deepcroft, Avere and I went to the Druthers for perhaps one too many drinks. We stumbled outside in a drunken stupor, and it was here that he fell into the river.
We thought it hysterical. That is, until we realized that not only were his gauntlets missing, but his ring as well!
There was no use searching for it in the dark, so we decided to return at first light. But alas, we never found it. Edda could never know...
Now I would make things right. To do that, we must retrieve Avere's ring. Come. I very much doubt these shallow waters would carry his gauntlets far.
I dare not ask how or why Edda found her way into those ruins, but I am strangely glad for it. Had you not gone into Gelmorra, I fear her ring would never have made its way here.
To think I could scarce take a step into the Tam–Tara Deepcroft, let alone that death trap. Ahem. Thankfully, that is behind us. For now let us see about finding Avere's ring, shall we?
<gasp> You've found his gauntlets!? Truly? What of the ring? Please tell me it was still inside.
Yes! Yes, this is it!
Now all that remains is to find a place where we might lay their rings─and hopefully, their spirits─to rest.
Hmmm... Perhaps Limsa Lominsa. It was, after all, where we all met. What could be better than a beautiful view of the maritime city where their love first blossomed?
I can think of no better place than Summerford. Meet me near the top of the Skylift. I know a nice little spot with a beautiful view of Limsa.
<sigh> Would you look at that. It brings back such fond memories. Now, let us offer up our prayers to the dearly departed.
Even in death they suffered together, down there in the dark. Avere, Edda... I pray you sleep, and finally know true peace.
And with that, I believe we're finished here. Already I can feel a great weight has been lifted from my mind. Perhaps I may even enjoy a good night's rest.
Words cannot express my gratitude, Forename. You've seen me through much, and shown me what it means to be an adventurer. Our party lacked unity, and paid dearly for it. No one should suffer as they did, and I will do all I can to see other would-be heroes do not succumb to such a fate.