Urbelin turned and walked quickly away, not towards the stairway where the work was most intense, but to a quiet part of the chamber where there were few people. Drewin followed him. They passed between rows of shelves and cabinets that were full of books and elaborate artefacts until they came to a dark corner where there was an old table covered in dust. Urbelin stopped and waited for Drewin to approach.

‘This is where it all started, many years ago. Many years ago.’

Drewin looked at the table and saw a thin book lying at its centre, under the layers of dust. He brushed the worst of the dust away, and opened the book. He turned over a few of the dry brittle pages, examining each one carefully.

‘These are the runes of Iranor!’ he exclaimed.

‘You know of them? Few people do, outside this cavern. In this book is the list of all fourteen runes and the rules for their use.’

‘Fourteen! But there are only thirteen! What is this new one?’ Drewin looked intently at the page.

The old runes antiqued


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