Deep in the bowels of Mithril Hall, a young dwarf stood at the forge, working diligently on the weapons that were used in the defense of his people. The searing heat of the forge cast dancing shadows along the smooth granite walls. This section of the hall had long been mined of its precious Mithril, the lifeblood and wealth of his people.
He withdrew the axe head from the embers with a pair of metal tongs, placing it upon the anvil and raised the forging hammer above his head, slamming it down upon the heated metal, sparks flew and the sound of metal striking metal echoed through the halls, answering the calls ringing from the other niches within the hall, where other smiths worked on their craft.
Hours later, the dwarf stood before the forge, the sweat of exertion coating his face and arms, matting his hair and stinging at his eyes. He looked upon the now forged axe head, admiring the craftsmanship and saying a silent word of thanks to Moradin for the strength of his people. As he plunged axe head into the barrel of cool water, steam erupted, being caught in the updraft and whisked away toward the pipes that vented the forges.
He wiped his face with a cloth that sat on a nearby table after he set the axe head down and his thoughts began to wander, thinking about the trials and challenges his people had faced, the orcs, the goblins and other raiders that had come and been ultimately repelled from the halls. Through the strength of their gods and the will of their people they had been victorious. Those victories were not without their losses, many had died and many more would. But, duty was involved as well as honor and there was no victory without losses.
There had been a time when he would have believed the Dwarves could have done it alone, but those days had passed for him anyway. Oh, he would never accept the others like he did his own, that was simply the way it was for his people. He had seen the City of Splendors and traveled through the vast desert to the city of Calimport. He had fought alongside humans and barbarians, watched the antics of gnomes and halflings and even called an elf or two friend.
As his hammer rung true on the metal of the axes handle he thought of the triumphant victories he had known, fighting orcs and dragons. Laughing as he picked up a small chisel he began to work the intricate details of design he had conceived for the handle and remembered those he had left behind to return here and help his people, do his duty.
When he had strode into the hall again after several months and sat with the others in the tavern drinking and telling his tales he remembered what it was to be one of his people. He enjoyed the eager gazes of the youngsters who had not yet ventured out of the hall as he told his tales. As they lifted their mugs and drank to him he knew more now than ever that Mithril hall would always be his home even if he would leave again soon to explore and adventure. To hone is skills so and learn to be better than he was, to honor his gods and show reverence to them for their favor upon the Dwarves
As he finished the engraving and began fitting the two pieces together it reminded him of his own becoming whole. His early years had been like any other dwarf, spent here in the halls, learning their ways and the traditions they held sacred, but once he had set out and begun to put those teachings to practice he began to realize the true benefit of them.
He laid his work on the table so that it could set and be given to one of the younger dwarves as a right of passage, he thought to himself of when he had received his first weapon and nodded, proud of his people and proud of himself.
For Digov, it had only just begun.
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