The simple monument to Reg was finished and had been dedicated at sunrise. In keeping with his abiding faith in Erastil, the half-orc had been buried where he fell, and out in the Kamelands there was a matching marker above his simple, stout tomb. Reg would not have agreed to any kind of resurrection, as it went against his faith. This obelisk stood next to the one that memorialized Kincaid, in Founders’ Square, next to Tuskwater Castle. The people of Misthaven had taken up donations to erect it, and a pair of local stone cutters and some artisans gave their time to complete the job.
Anton’s scars were lighter and thinner, but healing slowly. Wounds sustained from magic were hard to heal, even through arcane and divine means. He’d lost all the hair on his head and arms, and most of his neck and face had been badly burned in the fire. The best healers had told him that his right hand would be stiff and weak for a long time, and might never be quite the same. But he’d taken damage before, been wounded almost to the point of death. Physical injury was quantifiable and its healing or lack of it, was obvious. Wounds of the soul were worse – hidden, perhaps on purpose, and prone to festering. Anton missed his friend Reg, and wrestled with the guilt of knowing that he’d given his life to save Anton’s.
Zion had healed quickly, once Pik had worked the poison out of him. But he was different now – distant, as if he was always paying at least some attention to something that others could not perceive. He and General Alcorn had chased the Nomen out of the kingdom, killing more of them than would be counted in the process. Meanwhile Pik had worked with the Mistborn Rangers to put more eyes out to the east to determine if any threat lingered.
What they’d started was based on a promise between friends and family: to pacify and rule these lands as good men, in ways that they’d wished they themselves had been ruled before. Kincaid, Pik, Anton, Zion, and Reg – five men who’d claimed a kingdom for themselves, earned the respect of their people, neighbors, and enemies. The years had changed them all, with Kincaid stepping away first, perhaps a surprise to no one when he found his elf bride and took to the woods, only returning when Pitax threatened his home – and eventually suffering terribly to protect it.
Zion had separated himself, too, but not completely nor for reasons of animosity. In years to come, when the history of the origins of the Mistmarches would be written, sages recognized Zion’s drift away during the years after the war with Pitax as the beginning of greater changes for him as his magic grew, and his connection with the arcane power in his blood drew closer.
Not long after the Nomen Incursion, as it would soon become known, Zion abdicated his position as king, formally becoming the realm’s Magister, and adopting his birth name, William, as a quiet honor to his lost brother – the only family he had.
Pik, recognizing the years of change that had already taken place, and looking toward the future of the realm, stepped down from his throne, as well, creating the Mistmarches as a true kingdom, with one king to rule it, and loyal friends to assist him, and an heir to one day replace him when it was time for a marker to stand for him in Founders’ Square.