There he was, sitting in his Camp in the middle of the Wilderness and pondering about his next steps. His meeting with Jefferson Gray, this self-proclaimed God made him nauseos to the point of breaking, but as long as Era was in his hand he had no Chance of acting against him. And after the faked Asassination of Katharina there was no way back for him to Cadomyr, if everyone should play there part, then he would be taken as soon as he entered. Holding Oxyanas Letter in Hand he started thinking: 'Hrm ... doesn't seem like kyre will be so willing to pla her part in this little scheme to free Era ... if it goes on like this then ...' he stopped his thoughts and shook his head. Thinking about the worst possible outcome wouldn't help anyone But what should he do? He knew himself and that he wasn't able to sit it out until the others rescued her. Was there a way of rescuieng her anyway? No ... these thoughts were no help. He knew his Comrades and was sure that they would do anything possible to save her in his absence. Dantagon, Krukk, Katharina and even Ssar'ney. Maybe with an exception to Katharina they were Warriors from the Bottom of their Hearts, but still they all agreed to take part in this scheme. All that was left was to trust them. He didn't believe that Kyre were willing to help in this scheme so there was only one possible way to go now. His gaze wandered to the Greatsword laying at his side and he started mumbling with a deep voice: "Malachin ... please grant me the strenght and the Luck to suceed in the Hunt that i will begin ..." Now his way was clear to him. He had chosen to follow into the Footsteps of the Great Hunter like Gray chose to follow the Bonelord. Maybe it was Fate that he, a Paladin of Malachin found his Nemesis in a Follower of Moshran.Just like their Gods clashed long ago, somehow it seemed unavoidable that these two Individuals would also brandish their Blades towards one another. The only difference was that Gray had taken something precious ... something irreplacable for him ... the Elfess that managed to creep into the Heart of this tall and bulky man. "Era ..." he mumbled and shook his head before he stood up and began packing his Camp. 'There is no time to loose. Since my Plan will probably be a Deadend, and i cant return like this there is only one way... i have to find Grays Hideout on my own. Time is of the Essence since i dont know how long it will take until he finds out about the scheme. I doubt that he will harm her as long as i ... or she still has a use for them but still ... ' Again there wer these doubts. No matter. He would find here or die trying. That was what he wanted in the depth of his heart. He hid the Poles with which he had build his tent and went off.
Days became Weeks and Weeks became Months, but Caines search was useless. No matter where he looked he found nothing of the Hideout he was looking for and at one day, late in the evening he found himself at the End of his physical and mental strenght. Sometimes he even considered that he became mad due to the lack of social contacts and decided for a while that this story was nothing but a prolonged Nightmare that he thought of himself.But then he still searched on, not knowing himself anymore why he did.Then suddenly there was a rustling of leaves. Caine shot around and found a lone Ranger stepping forward with raised Hands. "Easy there, lad. I don't mean any harm to'ye. Just wondering if ye would mind if an old man warms up at'ye Campfire. Caine just nodded. Even if he was found by a stranger now ... it wouldn't matter. He has done what he could and even if he was found and trialed ... it didn't matter anmore. He had even forgotten that the "Asassination of katharina was nothing mor than a Plot. "Ye don' seem like a Hunter, Lad. Mind me asking what are'ye doing out here? Caine looked at the person who asked him and prepared to answer. But instead of words he was just coughing and he felt a little paine in his throat. 'Seems like not using my voice took a toll on me, hrm?' Caine thought to himself and opened his mouth again to answer with an extremely hoarse Voice. "I do Hunt ... not Deer but ... a Monster ..." The unknown Ranger raised his Brow. "What monster, Lad? Mas ist still a few months away." "Jefferson gray ..." Caine answered again and the Rangers Face changed into a Grimace. "Even though i don' get into towns that often, I still know tha' Name ... say ... Ye' look like you are already outhere for Months ... had any luck yet?" Caine just shook his head and the Ranger nodded. "Ye' plannin' on giving up?" The Ranger asked again And Caine fell silent for a moment before he answered. "I ... don't know ... the Solitude ... it seems to take a toll on my mind ... haven't talk to someone for Ages ..." Now that Caine thought about it ... where did this Man come from? Why was he here, and why did Caine talk so openly with him? He had no answers to this Questions but he truly enjoyed his presence. Then the Man suddenly laughed. "Ye'are partially right. Sometimes the Wilderness can be become quite solitary ... but still that doesn't mean ye have ta feel lonely. As long as ye have ye Faith Malachin will watch over ye. An' there are still his messengers tha Wolves to keep a man of his Company." Caine looked up. "how ... do you know im ..." The Nameless Ranger just smiled and nodded to Caines sword. "I'm a Ranger. Do ye think i do not see a Blade crafted for Malachin? Since ye wear heavy Armor an' not use a Bow ye have to be a Paladin, correct?" Caine just nodded. If he thought abut it the Explanation of the Man made sense. He was a Ranger. And that he also worshipped Malachin wasnt too farfetched. "Tell ye what, Lad? I guess ye should continue that hunt o'yours ... not only for tha sake a Glory ... but also for tha Sake o'the Hunt itself. If ye decide to end it here an' now ye might regret it for the Rest o'ye Life, Lad. Caine looked Questioningly to the Man but he raised. "guess it's time to continue tha hunt o'mine myself. The man turned and prepared to leave while waving to Caine like they were old Friends. "Make sure ta find that Foll following tha ol' Bile o' bones an' show'em what a man of malachin is capable of, Caine. And Remember ... as long as you have your Faith in malachin you will never be in Solitude in the Wilderness." Caine turned around to ask the Man how he knew his name but he was gone without a Sound ... 'How ...' thought Caine and pondered. Could it be that it was truly HIM ...? Was it an Image created by himself because of his wish for Contact? Or did he plainly go insane with the Months ... in the End he had no answer and decided to go on with more Important tasks ... where would he search on tomorrow. He already searched all likely places but to no avail ... it didn't matter. She HAD to be somewhere, so he would then start searching the more unlikely places. And if he would fail again he would then start the search anew.
Several years later at the gates of Cadomyr a hooded figure stood in Front of the gates. It wore an old, battered Armor bit a still sharp looking twohanded Sword. It wore silvery old looking and dirty cloak. The hood was pulled deep into his face and the recognizable Features didnt look very knightly. The figure had a long unkempt beard, had a Burnscar on his right face and wore a simple clothbandage over his right eye.
He was at the End of his Road ... Caine didn't know for how long he has searched, but found nothing, so all that he had left to to was return ... hope for forgiveness and the Help of his friends to finally bring his hunt to an End. He knew that it wouldn't be like before his departure. He would probably be a stranger again, and sacrificed so much since the kidnapping. His Flat was surely re-rented, many of his former Friends probably died or left the City and due to the lack of Magical gemstones he was surely no longer on of the stronger fighters. Do i regret leaving my home for such a long time, he asked himself in thought. The answer was yes ... he did regret it to some degree, but in the next moment the Rangers words flickered back in his mind: "If ye decide to end it here an' now ye might regret it for the Rest o'ye Life, Lad." Caine shortly chuckled. 'He was right ... i probably would have regreted it even more than i do now ... besides that my Life as i knew it would have ended some years ago if it were not for him ... no matter who or what he was, i should give him my thanks next time i meet him", he thought before entering the Gate decorated by the Colours of the Noblehouses and the first Famliar Face he had seen in years ... finally and after an endless seeming hunt he was back in Cadomyr.