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TRUE Limits Of Humanity – The Final Border We Will Never Cross
Once at the inn, the group settles in for an evening of food, wine and conversation. Over the course of their discussion, Borch inquires whether or not Geralt would kill dragons. Geralt explains that no, he would not. It is not dragons who terrorize humans, but the reverse. The knight is pleased to hear this and then excuses himself briefly. To his surprise, she responds "Because he is the most beautiful". The next day, Geralt, Borch and the Zerrikankians set out towards Hengfors. Not long into their journey, they are stopped at the border the only bridge across the Braa for miles and told that they may not continue without a letter of safe-conduct.
As it happens, Dandelion is also among the other travelers who have also recently been barred passage. He tells Geralt that king Niedamir is in the area hunting a dragon who recently appeared. After this dragon allegedly terrorized a nearby village, the villagers decided to trap and kill it. The local cobbler, Sheepbagger , planted a dead sheep stuffed with hellebore, belladonna, hemlock, sulfur, pitch and tacks in the middle of their flock as bait for the beast.
And just to be sure, the local apothecary added two measures of carbuncle salve to the mixture which was then blessed by the local priest of Kreve. While there were a few initial concerns that the saurian would decimate the flock before eating the "offering", the locals were happily surprised to see the beast make a bee-line for the bait. The lizard devoured it in one gulp and then tried to fly off, but fell to the ground almost immediately. At this point the local gravedigger and the village idiot decided to go and check to see if the dragon was indeed dead. Not the best move as it was not dead, but severely weakened.
So much so, that it was only able to suck their blood before trying once again to fly off. After a few more attempts, it was able to limp away clearly suffering, but the locals want it dead and feel that its treasure belongs to them, after all, dragons always have a hoard of treasure. The witcher finds the whole story rather preposterous as dragons have not been seen in the area for years, but the bard assures him that while his tales might suffer from a bit of necessary! Borch seems interested in the fact that the dragon was not killed but more concerned that they have nothing to drink and sends his "girls" off to get some.
King Niedamir has his own reasons for tracking the beast, and strangely enough the treasure is not his primary goal. The title of "dragon killer" is what he is after. This would help him secure the hand of the princess of Malleore which would satisfy his political objectives and fit nicely into a trumped-up local legend that she may only marry a "dragon-killer". The king does not want this plan exposed so he sends out a call for a dragon hunting crew.
This call is answered by: Eyck of Denesle , a knight, Boholt and his men, the Crinfrid Reavers , Yarpen Zigrin , a dwarf and his crew, the cobbler Sheepbagger and a sorceress. The mage is also without a letter of safe conduct and Dandelion wastes no time in pointing out that one of his colleagues apparently already does, the sorceress with the king's party. At this point, Dorregarary guesses quite correctly that said sorceress is none other than Yennefer.
Hearing that Yennefer is with the king's party, Geralt decides to join the hunt. He goes to take his leave of Borch, but the latter informs that there is nothing in particular which forces him to go to Hengfors right away and that he would be happy to continue with the witcher. The witcher has had enough of sitting around and attempts to bribe the border guard with gold, but his offer is refused.
Borch raises the offer to and tells Geralt to put his purse away. This is enough to sway the guard who then starts fretting about what he will tell his superiors. Dorregaray seals the deal by telling him to simply say he was scared senseless by a magical display and promptly sets a large nearby pine ablaze with a wave of his hand. The new larger party then crosses the river and continues on its way to join the dragon hunting expedition. The various camps have rather different plans for the dragon. Boholt and Yarpen formed an alliance with Yennefer, Eyke wanted to kill a dragon in a fair fight, Dandelion wanted to witness the events firsthand and write an epic ballad.
Geralt meets with Yennefer but the sorceress is not interested in talking to him. She cannot forgive him for simply disappearing for two years. She states that she is here solely to collect dragon tissue with which she hopes to create an elixir to treat her infertility. She desperately wants to be a mother but can't. Niedamir is bored by the bickering and decides to appoint a marshal, Gyllenstiern.
The journey continues. Yennefer and Geralt gritting their teeth, Dorregaray teasing Geralt and calling him a killer of endangered species, and Eyck shouting to cleanse the ranks of non-humans. Meanwhile, the team, having reached a narrow section in an already rocky path, is caught in a rockslide. Most of them manage to get across the next bridge before it collapses, but part of the team is left behind. Geralt and Yennefer fall into the canyon but at the last moment the witcher manages to plant his dagger into the timbers of the bridge and grabs it with both hands.
Yen is left clinging to the scabbards on his back. While they dangle perilously, they have ample opportunity to overhear what is being said about them above - not the least of which is a plan to wait until the enchantress becomes exhausted and falls to her death. Eventually, the honorable Eyck decides to throw them a magic elven rope. Borch and the Zerrikankians disappear. The situation is tense for the team. Eyck considers the avalanche a divine punishment for allowing the presence of heathens, such as the witcher and the dwarves on the team. Geralt quarrels with him briefly but decides not to leave. Suddenly shouts are heard announcing that a dragon is very close at hand, but not the one for which the hunt was organized.
The group face an enormous golden dragon, a living legend, in which Geralt had never previously believed. Despite impassioned pleas from Dandelion and Dorregaray, the group decides to kill the beast. The troubadour sees the dragon as a living legend, and such legends should be left alone. Sheepbagger proposes to use the same ploy he used with the other dragon, namely a poisoned sheep carcass as bait, but the dwarf, Yarpen scoffs at this plan. The dragon himself decides to address the team using telepathy.
He gives them two options: leave or face him in a fair duel using conventional weapons which is to say, without fireballs, flying or other magic. Eyck is the first to challenge him, as an honorable duel was exactly what he had hoped to engage in. His entrance is rather comically heralded by Yarpen. Sitting very erect in his saddle, he moves to charge the dragon, but the beast is very agile and effortlessly sends the hapless knight along with his horse! Next please! Yennefer decides to convince Geralt to kill the dragon, saying that everything between them would be resolved and that they would go back to their previous relationship.
The witcher, however, remembers very clearly her earlier comments which had specifically excluded this possibility. He declares that killing the dragon would go beyond "the limits of possibility" provided for in his code of honor. Meanwhile, Gyllenstiern is getting antsy having seen Eyck go down so quickly and looks to Boholt and his men. Boholt is quite unimpressed with what has happened so far and accuses Gyllenstiern of using Eyck to fight his battles for him and also of intending to run off with the spoils. The leader of the Reavers renounces the "deal" to help the king saying they will kill the dragon themselves and take the treasure saying that the Caingorn contingent of the party has failed in its quest. Sheepbagger begs the king to let the village militia, who are still on their way via a different route, kill the dragon but Gyllenstiern feels the situation is getting out of hand.
He asks the king what the group should do. The king rather sarcastically thanks his marshal for finally asking his opinion and proceeds to state it. Public lands Biden restores beloved Utah landscapes, reversing Trump cuts. Lebanon Country hit by electricity outage expected to last several days. Health Can migraines be untangled by new medical thinking? Eva Wiseman, who has endured them since she was a child, hears how he found his way to the source of the pain — and what can be done about it. Democrats Progressives draw strength from muscle-flexing in Congress.
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