The Hourglass - An Ending

You have chosen the “ Shade Shifter’s Glass” and the path of Rogue

You reach for the rustic-looking hourglass, much too curious as to why only a few grains are left in the top. The glass is somehow clear and bright, unclouded by time, though the wooden trappings are wearing away with age and appear to be splintering. You have never been unable to resist mystery or an unanswered question. You are lost in thought for a few minutes, and then, startling yourself with the revelation that perhaps it could siphon away your life, you rethink your decision. However, it is too late.

Never a graceful person to begin with, you lose your balance in the strange atmosphere of the room, with the wind brushing at you and urging you to make a choice. You trip forward ever so slightly and catch yourself gently by pressing on the hourglass before you. As your fingers meet the cool surface of the glass, you are ripped back through the dark path. You arrive in a stone-walled room, hoping yourself not to be dead. The room is spacious and dimly lit by a tiny window near the ceiling. Are you still in the library? Perhaps you touched a forbidden object and are now imprisoned. You hear the rush of the waterfall outside the window and gather that you have not left the library’s borders.

Frantically, you look around the room and are relieved to see a door. You are relieved that you do not appear to be jailed, but this is no guest room. Inspecting your surroundings, you note many gleaming daggers, globes of wicked-looking greenish smoke, and blood-red liquid lining the rough-hewn walls. Ill at ease once more, you wonder if you are awaiting torture. Then, your eyes land on a set of fine leather armor, clearly cut for agility, dyed to the blackest shade you have ever seen. It looks to be precisely your size.

Torture? You think, with a smile curling your lips….or something else? A voice speaks to you again from the shadows in the furthest corner, a sliver of the room untouched by the window’s glow. It is not the same voice you heard in the chamber only a few moments before you landed on the hard dirt floor of this chamber, but you are already weary of floating voices. You roll your eyes, pick up the glass, and make for the door.

“You are CLEARLY in need of some assistance before you depart with that.” A tendril of shadow reaches out like a finger, poking the hourglass at the end of their statement. Amused and slightly offended at the suggestion, you ask the shadow what kind of assistance they are implying. Again, rolling your eyes. (You have a bit of an attitude, did I mention that?) The shadow-entity goes on to explain what the hourglass is and how you will need to learn agility, stealth, and skill with a dagger if you are to wield it properly. It saw you trip in the other room. It had found that very funny.

You, by fate or accident, selected the Shade Shifter’s Glass. A rare and powerful artifact prized by Rogues for its unique ability to disrupt the fabric of time at will, wrapping its wielder in an impenetrable cloak of darkness created by opening portals backward or forward in time. By freezing time or teleporting through it, the glass grants the user the advantage of evading danger or making crucial decisions in the blink of an eye. One could wear the portal itself like a cloak, half disappearing, or step through to arrive at a different location—the perfect tool for concealment, the ideal tool for thievery. Being of the slightly dishonest type yourself, you knew of this item and never thought you would see one in person. Only two were ever made.

Before you can ask how a presumptuous, smoky cloud has knowledge of such a rare item, a woman steps out from the dissipating shade around her. Clad in black and covered head to toe, save for her eyes and a few strands of silvery hair escaping from her hood; she holds her outstretched palm towards you—the twin glass to yours.

Of course, you train together in this room, and that graceful nature you lacked before comes easily before you leave the library. Much of the remainder of your life is too covert for the history books to know, but legend has it that two Rogues, a married couple with ethereal and unheard-of abilities, robbed the corrupt king. Drained of every last jewel in the treasury, he forfeited the throne to a righteous and just successor. No one knows what became of the pair. However, your children are aware of your suspicious amount of fine jewelry, even if they never say it.

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