Across the wilds of the Underdark, on the other side of Blingenstone, Zaknafein has found their fake encampment, and is in a rage over his continued failure to find his prey. It takes all of Malice's strength of will to reign him in and send him back on his way.
One day later, Drizzt and Belwar hear curious sounds outside their cavern. Drizzt remembers those sounds, and races out of the cavern yelling "Hook Horror!"Outside, he finds exactly what he thought it was,
and gets his scimitars on the creatures neck, about to strike the killing blow. Just then, the monster speaks, something he believed a hook horror incapable of doing."No...not...monster..please..no..kill..me!" the thing manages to squawk.
Drizzt stays his hand, and the creature says it is not a Hook Horror, but rather a thing called a "Pech". Belwar knows of the pech by the name rock children, creatures whose only reason for being seems to be rock carving, and their numbers are very small. The Pech tells that it was turned into a hook horror by an evil wizard, and does not know how long it has been that way, having lost all sence of time because it is no longer connected to the stone in its present form.
When Belwar asks the creature its name, it either does not have one, or it has forgotten, so Belwar names it "Clacker". Belwar then intends to say goodbye to the creature and send it on its way, but Drizzt says they must allow it to be with them. Drizzt has pity on the creature and insists that they track down the wizard who did it, and then force him to unmake the spell.
Just as they were about to become too tired to go on, the entered a great tavern that was dominated by a huge tower made of pure Adamantite. Belwar stands in awe at the sight, for adamantite is the toughest substance known in Faerun, and just a small amount is worth a king's ransom, and extrememly hard to work with. "How did he build such a thing?" the gnome asks. "Magic," is Drizzt's reply, with more than a hint of disdain in his voice.
Inside the tower, they see an empty octaganal chamber with only a wooden ladder leading up to the higher levels. Drizzt is somewhat taken aback to find a human living alone in the vastness of the underdark.
Before either of his new friends can stop him, Clacker rushes the wizard, cutting him apart before he can defend himself. His only hope of restoration is now dead at his own hands and the trio left the tower in silence.
When they reached their home, they foudn it in total disarray.Suddenly, the three of them are hit by an unseen psionic force, and knocked unconscious. From the shadows, a group of Illithids float into the cavern and hover over their fallen victims.The Illithids who captured them have used them for their own comfort and benefit. They are the Mind Flayers. Illithids (commonly known as mind flayers) are monstrous humanoid aberrations with psionic powers.
In the gladiatorial arena, Belwar is set to fight an Ogre by his master, being told telepathically that beast had threatened the master, and that he should kill it.Belwar after their battle kills the Ogre.
Outside the walls of the illithid castle, in the same open cavern where Drizzt and his companions had been captured, yet another drow warrior made his approach. Zaknafein, the spirit-wraith under the influence of Malice's zin-carla ritual, had traked his quarry to the illithid Mind Flayers territory.
When four of the illithids who had captured the others tried their mind trickery on Zak, nothing happened, he was immune. In short order, he slew all four of the mind flayers and made his way to the castle gates uncontested.
Guen sensed the two and immediately recognized them as an enemy. She attacks, killing the astral presence of one, causing its death on the material plan
Then she does the extraordinary. Using the still living illithid as a portal, she jumps through its astral presence into the material plane, ripping it to shreds in the process. Scenting out Drizzt, she runs off into the hallways of the castle.
All over the castle, illithids were driven down to their knees, wailing horribly in pain. Already in confusion from both Zak's arrival and Guen's romp through the castle the illithids were not equipped to deal with the fallout of the death of their god.
Running through the castle, they meet up with Belwar and then race to find Clacker. When they find him, his is fully taken with hook horror rage, and Drizzt must draw his blades to defend himself. He is able to stop, and regains himself, and the quartet runs towards the gate together, Clacker leading the way towards a back entrance. Near that entrance, Drizzt's world falls apart as he sees his father alive and fighting his way through a mass of remaining slaves. Drizzt rushes to see his father, but is met with sharp blades and a mindless rage.
In his confusion, Drizzt realizes that it may be his father's body he is meeting, but it is not his father's mind or soul that are in control, and he is overwhelmed by the fierceness of the attack.
From the shadows springs Zaknafein, his blades flying. "You're not my father," Drizzt yells. Another voice comes through Zak's mouth, "No. I am... your mother." Malice presses the attack, slashing Drizzt across the cheek, a move which makes Drizzt finally give in to the Hunter. Even with the added advantage of fighting purely on skill and instinct, Zak fought his son to a standstill. This makes Drizzt think that Zak is still inside the undead body somewhere, so he lowers his scimitars and refuses to fight.
Zak, the real Zak is now back in control, but he warns Drizzt back. Drizzt thinks they can be together again, but Zak explains that he is still dead, and would rather return to death than cause harm to his son. He tells Drizzt how proud he is of him for not only his fighting skill, but even more so for his courage to do what he had never done and leave Menzoberranzan.
As Zak begins to loose control of himself again, he proclaims his pride for his son one last time. "I do this for us," he yells, and casts himself from the earthen bridge and into the acid sea below.
In short order, the Do'urden daughters are killed in the battle. In the Do'urden throne room, Briza is slain by Jarlaxle,
who comes to offer Dinin a place among Bregan D'aerthe. Jarlaxle sees an able leuitentant and swordman in Dinin, and would hate to see such a one go to a useless death.
Drizzt and Belwar bury Clacker, and also raise a beir for Zaknafein, believing he deserved a proper grave to mark his passing from the world. Belwar prayed to his gods for the soul of Clacker, while Drizzt, having forsaken his people's evil goddess, hoped that his father was finally at peace.
Drizzt tells Belwar he cannot stay, and means to depart to yet another place in an effort to get further away from his evil kind, and take their vengeance toward him as far as possible from the only people he had ever met and truly come to care for.
Belwar insists he come with Drizzt, but Drizzt will not allow it and bids a final farewell and thank you.
Calling Guenhwyvar from her astral home, the two of them travel for weeks, Drizzt retracing his steps along a path he had travels well over a decade before. He could no longer stay in the Underdark.
Even though his mother was dead and his House fallen, Lolth and Baenre would not rest until they had tracked him down and slain him. He also could not stay lest the madness of the Hunter claim him forever, so there was only one place left to go.
END OF BOOK TWO
Continues the Book Three in a next post