| Reader Note: This has been sent to
| the tower of Sulyott the All-Knowing.
| Located in a place called Mishala.
| A hand written copy is slipped into Indaris’s bag while he sleeps, if caught
| he merely asks the priest to read the copy of the missive and talk to him the
| following night when he might have time. He would mention it as the beginning of
| a confession of sins.
We have reached a safer area and I can be more prolific regarding events that transpired from 16 days ago onward. I received a missive from ‘The Agent’ and I have copied it for you here:
I started punching a boulder until my fists were bleeding and let out a roar wanting nothing more than the whole of the Wastelands to feel my pain and slay me so I could kill the Betrayer of the Lawgiver!
(… For brevity’s sake click ‘HERE’ for it …).
With our guide Old Gregg we made haste and by the 20th of Thoth I came home to find every elder of my village SLAUGHTERED! By the young tribesmates that Groun’na’s, a childhood friend had corrupted to the dark! The stench was sickening and I found out the neighboring tribe of Utu followers, cannibals, had helped him! Utu is working with the Lord of Darkness, I know I should not be surprised Death and Darkness have always been cozy bedfellows I suspect.
I spent the day holding my dead mother to my chest, around the corpse of my mother was symbols of Utu and Set, more than anywhere else! She clearly made them earn her death in ‘The Lady’s’ name. I cried and wailed I could feel my heart breaking inside and for the only time in my life I hated Isis! She was going to get her husband back because I will not break my word but what of my mother! If she had her husband die so long ago why has she waited thousands of years to seek vengeance upon those that wronged her?
I have to stop, writing this line of thought is why I made a copy and gave this to our newest member I will explain more later about him. My mother was a true and caring priestess of the Lady and I don’t have her anymore to work through these feelings of anger. Logically, I know they are wrong but I can’t help but feel this tonic of anger and grief. I have no time for it and it’s not going away, so please understand how much your letter’s arrival meant to me. The Lord of Wisdom was very kind to this unworthy mage and let me know my words had reached you. Like a true hero I read about in tales of yore you took up the call to arms! My heart’s health currently is owed to you and Mistress Iana. I know my companions can see me breaking and I am trying so hard to live up to what I think they need from me. Each prayer I offer since the 26th of Thoth is the same.
“… Just let me get through the day and not let my friends down …”
I keep looking at Sir Quixis hoping I do nothing to make him frown. I don’t know why the gods did not call him for he far more noble than the lot of us, he deserves a ring of CrIsis. TRUTH.
Upon the Festival of Thoth I began the multiple day process of burning the dead via funeral pyres and warning the other two groups of light worshiping tribemates, led by paladins I might add. All of there parents had died, and only the aged Librarian of the tribe survived by hiding.
5 days it took to burn them all, the ones I knew were evil I crushed their skulls so they could not be reborn in the afterlife. On the dawn of the 26th day I walked to the surface and made my prayer to the whole of the Pantheon of Light and Dark. I wanted to tell them how I felt they all cared nothing for us mortals as long as we tow the line and offer supplication so THEIR PURSUITS are met not those whom they claim to…
…I am doing it again. Then your letter arrived and I read the poem each night before sleep:
The Dark flees from the Light
See how the Sun conquers the Night
If a Candle is lit
The Dark runs from it!
When faced by the Dark’s hungry maw
Defeat it by the power of Law
For remember for all the Blight
Your faith should be Bright.
Then word came from my brother and mentor (the minotaur paladins I mentioned) and they are going to rebuild the tribe, somehow, someway. I wish I was as strong as them and Sir Quixis. All I want to do is unleash everything and start crushing priests of darkness to deny the gods of darkness theirs prayers and weaken whatever they get from their supplicants!
To speed this along Old Gregg our Vrill guid took us to the Serelan tribe led by a Paladin of Rurga, Xixin! Oh sorry, I think I told you this part already. But Xixin had traveled the world and had earned a powerful magic spear from the famous tree planted by greatest wizard ever! Hmmm, I am sure I mentioned that part before as well.
Well soon we broke fast and began planning the battle to bait the Idrijian Minotaurs whom had gotten some of their tribe turned into Vampires! Oh sorry, I think I told you this part already.
Well the battle took place early on the 30th of Thoth, the trap was set with 20 Serelan Minotaurs acted as bait to draw out the Idrijian. I had given a powerful object of magic said to come from the Elves of Phi that practice mosaic magic to Master Cava. It allowed him to hide and place the tile in the tunnel the Idrijian would approach from and he could see it like a crystal ball. This allowed us to be ready with Mistress Iana using her internal powers of the mind to guard the Serelan Minotaur archers with her powers. Master Azariel, our strategist, plotted the attack with Xixin and Master Cava. Using circle magic and a well placed carpet of adhesion spell he closed off retreat and then waited till he could spot the leader of the Idrijian Minotaurs with Right Femur of the Lawgiver. Master Overkill and and Xixin were maelstroms of destruction against minotaur vampires! When they were laid low it was after wounding several and at least killing one of the undead minotaurs each!
I walk among legends.
I dragged Xixin’s body to the bravest elf I have ever known! In a battle between Minotaurs, Vampire Minotaurs, circle magic, bones of a god and EVERYONE being more skilled than her in combat MISTRESS IANA ran from safety to Xixin on the front lines of the battle where 40 feet away were the enemy forces! Admits all this chaos she risked life and limb to help a paladin continue to fight another day! She too deserves a ring of CrIsis, for we have powers going for us of varying styles, but she is still a young adept in her discipline! She will become a great hero and the gods of light are lucky to count her among the faithful, she deserves a ring of CrIsis. TRUTH.
OOC NOTE – this quote is only on Brother Indaris’s copy:
Brother, Please share this with Mistress Iana, quietly, but she should know how amazing, brave and stalwart she is in the face of death. Especially for one so small.
I grabbed Xixin’s spear and charged the leader, goring him and Master Cava used his magic ring and came flying by to finish the job burying Thor-ak in his head. In what was the longest 15 seconds the battle was over and we had won. I hastily scrawled the pigeons messages that needed to be off and we began our retreat as Serelan reinforcements covered our backs. We had taken two prisoners and with spells I didn’t know Master Azariel got the truth out of them.
Then the Death Lord came for him pounds of flesh trying to deny us and rotted one into an acid cloud as a cheap attempt to kill us.
A GIANT FLASH OF LIGHT APPEARS!!!!!!
When it clears there stands a hooman that looks like the ones I saw in Credia. Remembering this is how I appeared to the group I wondered if this could be the case again. While some of the group went to readying weapons I noticed my countenance did not frighten him so I asked, “ARE YOU FROM THE GODS? DO YOU HAVE A RING, SHOW IT NOW!” He did produce the Eternal Torch Ring and brought word that the Lord of Wisdom said this place was dangerous and we needed to leave. We asked him to make a map on some parchment I provided that one of the prisoners had scrawled in the dirt. This would allow Xixin to exploit the Idrijian tribes caverns and hopefully win!
Oh I would like to point out during or retreat from the field I returned the magical wooden spear to Xixin. Oh, and the brave elf maid saved Master Overkill from seeing Utu or Anubis once more! Knights and Paladins could learn from her bravery.
I checked during our fireside chat and it is Brother not Father for his rank.
Brother Indaris came with as we left and gave the map to Xixin. There was a strong sense of wanting to stay and help these allies crush a force of evil and I for one was ready to unleash fury upon them. Then Master Cava’s head twitched as though someone was talking to him and a few seconds later he snapped to attention making very clear that the Lord of Wisdom said to leave. Well, he didn’t say Thoth but what else explains the very sudden change in demeanor. Outside the caverns we ran into Old Gregg and the group decided to head back over the mountain.
I WAS SO OVER JOYED TO HEAR THAT! THERE WOULD BE A CHANCE TO LOOK FOR MY FLAIL WITHOUT DERAILING THE GROUP!
Off we went and even with the sword still stuck in my chest (freak accident when Master Overkill’s sword got knocked from his hand during the fight) I trudged on trying not to smile to much. Master Aesyl, my tribe’s Librarian, joined us as well though he was concerned about the fighting. After a brief discussion about his options he elects to go to the Library when the group promises to get him there.
Now I am worried a bit about Master Azariel, our Vrill guide, Old Gregg, has always seemed a bit touched from his time in the Wastelands. Old Gregg is the most amorously inclined fellow I have ever met considering male or female, species difference, nothing would derail him for constant attempts to how should one say…
I think the heat has gotten to Master Azariel, because for all of Old Gregg’s passes he’s never tried to force himself on anyone, just people that spurn his advances rudely get called – “Curly Jefferson” – to which I can only guess. Master Azariel seems to have decided to romp with Old Gregg if he can get us back to the mountains! I did not think walking frog fish were in the Elf’s wheelhouse but Mistress Iana seems to find Dwarves and Minotaurs attractive as options! I clearly don’t understand inter-species mating rituals however, in this post Great War era anything is possible.
Oh yes today, I found out that FATE & LUCK were both gods that are in a lover’s quarrel! Amazingly, as we began the two day trek back to Old Gregg’s home we saw a group in the distance headed this way. Old Gregg ran to hide and Master Cava went after him to hope for another cave or something. Vanished and that was the last time any of us might see Old Gregg, though we didn’t know it then. I thought I smelled something funny at that moment but it was merely FATE & LUCK having a pissing match on me about who could screw my day over further. Anytime I thought one of my companions might asked about my melancholy demeanor was drowned out by two things: 1) FATE & LUCK relieving themselves again, 2) my tallest companion is five feet shorter than I am! You would be stunned to learn how often short races don’t look up, ever!
This group is lead by a Dwarf named Mollinur whom Master Overkill use to know because they were his slaves/servants/shipmate/subordinates. Ah lackeys yes lackeys, basically he shat on them and made them do his bidding. It would seem we are getting a lesson in how to treat people whether we want it or no. It would seem that the Gods of Light enjoy sitting around a crystal ball and watching stories of redemption, yes redemption, apparently to be viewed worthy to the gods one mus t have been a complete bastard at some point and then changed his ways or been changed by the gods intervention.
But wait how can I fit into this? I have not been a complete bastard, and you can’t redeem THE DEAD WHEN THEY GOT WHAT THEY DESERVED! My ancestors were vile, evil people that got their come up-pence and we that choose the light are their whipping….
…. I am sorry I am don’t always catch myself right now. I really hope Brother Indaris (pronounce it Induris I think when you meet him, I said it wrong three times today) is good at counseling. However, unlike everyone else I can look for nothing for myself, if I do then I feed every bad stereotype of my people. When this is all over and Osiris with his lady we Minotaurs or Bulls of Light will be forgotten to caves an tunnels praying for another day and the bad memory of a world that has no tolerance for second chances.
Mollinur’s group had come from Troker and soon it was decided that we would go there. I twice mentioned I would go along if that is what the group wished for, and I even replied to Cava once that I wanted to go back over the mountains and would be thrilled to carry him through the Yin-Sloth jungles. 1) to avoid Lopnel’s wrath so his feet would never touch the ground, and 2) this was the only way to look for my lost flail and not derail my friends quest. I will say in their defense they did not disregard my feelings, they never heard me. Their minds were so preoccupied with the quest that even answering them was moot, their minds had been made before querying my opinion.
I didn’t matter, my opinion was an idea stuck in an oubliette of silence, used by FATE & LUCK to relieve themselves. The Lady’s words about my people ring in my head and the tone of her hate for Minotaurs from tens of thousands of years ago is the only echo. However, for a god how faded is that memory, for her maybe it feels like yesterday? Is it wrong to pity a goddess? When I touched the Heart of Osiris I could feel his longing. Is this pity’s errand because imagine seeing your love hurt and being alive only barely and having no power to stop every bad thing from happening to her.
Pity’s quest indeed. I may have felt my anger soften for the first time since Mistress Iana’s distraction via prayer the night before this one.
So it was nearing nighttime on the 30th of Thoth and we had found the cave they stayed in the night before. There was an adjacent cave we later used for the Fireside chat. We have settle into groups getting to know our new companions. Master Azariel had left Old Gregg a note and before writing this I sent him one as well via magic pigeon. Sir Quixis and Brother Indaris spoke with one of the minotaurs about finding the Serelan tribe we had just come from. Apparently, that minotaur is also a Paladin of Rurga! I saw Sir Quixis then leave and join Master Overkill talking to Mollinar in what I am sure was some long winded apology for being a raging co…
…I really need to work this anger off somehow or its going to eat me alive. Master Aesyl and I talked with Drak’u’san a Minotaur warrior that had abandon his tribe because he saw the light where they raced to the darkness. Noble indeed! He had heard of the Etrinan Tribe and Master Aesyl got to talk with the lad long into the night. Turns out he is from the Sandy Desert in the Wastelands, from another Old Ones worshiping tribe called the Kkairojan Tribe.
Soon we moved to the other cave to get to know our newest member, Brother Indaris.
[CENSORED] I am sorry Commander Terramore there is some info I can’t include.
(OOC Note: The following info is only included in Brother Indaris’s copy & our readers) You were born to loving, good people in a town called Sino in the kingdom of Timiro. There was a fellow named Mudaren that sparked an interest in cartography, and you left home later in years to follow him. After nearly dying from poor planning, poor supplies, and enough youth to make it north past a place called Fort Hilde in the Old Kingdom. You were saved by a priestess of Isis and returned to Timiro, but not to home in Sino. No you headed to a city called Aracho where your training as a priest took shape. Once you completed you took a cartographer’s sojourn north the Holy City of Haven once the sites had been seen and the poor helped you made your way down the Great River to Llorn. Before you had a chance to decide where you might go next you were chosen by Thoth to accompany us on our quest. After you read all of this I think you can tell why “I” feel the need for confession. Questions from others included: Not married, believes Isis will lead him to his wife when she has need of such, you prefer women, social networking is your strength, and fighting is not. This should roughly cover the chat.
Brother Indaris healed everyone for a sacrifice of hair, Master Overkill donated a WHOLE BRAID OF HIS BEARD! I was finally able to get the sword out of my chest, Mistress Iana was able to use her mental powers to heal me internally from permanent damage. The good Brother Indaris healed everything superficial. This got me to thinking.
I have been thinking a great deal as of late and wondering how many differing cultures I have seen all with different views toward faith, prayer rituals, living, mating rituals, the future, and fighting. Earlier in the day when we met up with Mollinar’s crew Mistress Iana had been looking worn and tired, she and another elf from this group snuck of for about half an hourglass. When she returned she really did looked refreshed as though she had been meditating. For me prayer had been my meditation and recently the only thing holding my sanity together. For all the crap we have given her about being promiscuous it would appear coupling with another was her meditation ritual.
As quietly as an eleven foot tall person can move in an enclosed area I squatted down asked to meditate with her tonight. She looked relieved and I tried to apologize for not understanding before how she worshiped her goddess, benevolent Bast, only to have a finger pressed to my mouth.
I did not go to sleep or wake up angry, for how small your people are they generate an amazing amount of heat, Commander Terramore.
The 31st of the month of Thoth started for me with prayers of thanks to Bast, then to the Lawgiver and the Lady for Brother Indaris.
We were hit by two Blister Winds where the heat and blowing sand is enough to strip the flesh off a hooman unprotected. After the second wind Brother Indaris was forced to do some healing on Master Cava, while I joked with Master Overkill about his being a dick to Mistress Iana. It’s clear that even being playful my jokes are much harsher than before. I stop when we reach the Sandy Desert of the Wastelands.
Looking out we stared at what was once the heart of the Elven Empire of the New Kingdom. Now a small breeze moves before us and I see some dust blow and wonder how if the gods cared so much about people that worship them did they let this happen? How could they…
… Oh I caught it, it’s just a desert, it’s just a desert.
“… Just let me get through the day and not let my friends down …”
Not a turn of an hourglass into the Sandy Desert does a real sandstorm blow up and we get scattered to avoid something large taking us all out at once. I can make out Brother Indaris to my left but no one else.
SWIFT MOTION IN FRONT OF ME! I PARRIED SOME KIND OF ATTACK!
I can hear through the sandstorm sounds of attacks going on around me and I stand still waiting and when the beast strike I unleash the lightning fury of the Lawgiver’s bone. The beast which had been hit by Brother Indaris and his magnificent flail is now no more. Mere seconds later the storm subsided with about a dozen dead Eandroth. We looted them for protective desert clothing for those that had no Mologoth hide clothes.
Afterwards a comment was made about the price of getting us to Troker. When we queried Master Overkill since he had brokered the arrangement he said he forgot to talk about it this morning and he had to get word of the price. I was naive and thought these Dragon Coins we had found might be worth a bit so I offered them up. Only to find out we had not shared with Mistress Iana or Sir Quixis. I took four of my coins and gave two each to Misstress Iana and Sir Quixis immeadiately, and apologized that we had wronged them our closet friends. I gave the remaining 10 to help pay for the crossing.
Sir Quixis looked so understanding, if we make it through this and the gods of light bless it I want to be a Knight of the Dawn. I can still hunt evil but in every situation Sir Quixis is grace under fire. Now if I can just figure out how to bring it up not looking stupid, maybe Mistress Iana or the good Brother can help me with that? Master Azariel is smart I would ask him for clearly one day he will be a great alchemist. Men will come from all around to see him for his wares and wisdom.
Everyone that had Dragon coins chipped in a total (we would not let Mistress Iana or our good knight contribute given the wrongs done them) 8 more for 90,000 Old Kingdom Gold! Master Overkill tried to pay them and sent back to let know the price was double what they had figured, $70,000 so now $140,000 gold! Master Azariel had bartering skills and went back to negotiate for our $90,000 for we felt wronged since we had been more generous than they were hoping for. Apparently, Master Overkill was supposed to have this price paid once we had woken up this morning and forgot. So this group felt slighted by the Dwarf that had treated their leader very poorly. Damn pirates, ugh!
Then Mollinur tried to say he had a problem with Azariel’s race and reparations for his people, and how could he understand since they won the Great War.
I Snapped, there is no other way to put it.
How could have lived for over 8,000 years? his issue with Overkill was being projected on to anyone that considered him friend, help him become a better person so at the very least he has insulted ALL OF MY CLOSEST friends and inadvertently insulted the Gods of Light because they called him to the quest and help lay the ground work for making him a better person than he was!!!
He can still go into a town and not have people run and hide fearing the monster of their nightmares has come to take their children to Dyval or Hades!!
I was screaming this at him interrupting the negotiations and when Mollinur said, “Shut up minion of the Old Ones.”
I roared and stood up, Lawgiver bone in hand, pointing at his Minotaur associates, “How dare you accuse me of that bring your Paladin of Rurga forward to test my words, your right, Overkill is a raging C… Master! But he’s become a far better person…”
What I learned today is that communication is irreversible.
I called Master Overkill the master of a male’s member, which stunned everyone in both groups but made Mollinur think about how he just grouped and treated his Minotaur associates and I. Master Azariel got me to shut up long enough to complete negotiations for our trip to Troker and we will re-negotiate a voyage back to Cyclone and rejoin Rogtilda!
What I don’t know is how to tell Overkill I am sorry for what he thinks I think of him, I was referring to quips Mistress Iana made about his, ummm girth, as it were. I was not referring to his character directly. Please send this on to Brother Malkin Falimede at the Great Library, hopefully you two can come up with a better way to write about my outburst. What bothers me was I dangerously close to killing Mollinur over his insults of all I cared for those Minotaurs trying to be better than their forebears.
I sit alone tonight to write and take watch worried about my anger and how I hurt my friend.
>>> Written by Xerx’ses Goldenflail, upon nighttime / pre-dawn of the 2nd of Kym-nark-mar the year 111. <<<
Fighting Bard picture from Tolkien Across the Water.
Deification of doom portent picture from Capcom.
I drew the Xerx’ses and Cava picture.
Picture from WOTC.
The oubliette picture is from DUNSANDLE CASTLE.
The Eandroth picture is by Ramon Perez from Palladium Books.