Cormanthyr Spring


First Post
A night out with the "boys"

"Another debt I must honor. I can't believe I've willingly taken on a debt from..... Wait! Freeze idiot! Is that one looking your way? Nope,...ok nice and easy. Almost there now...just a few dozen more feet. Ah, edge of the shadows, don't have to be quite so quiet now. Home. Just a few breaths before the task. They should about be to the opposite side by now. Just a few more seconds, then I become an orc...smirk...I've been worse. Ok, time for an installment on your new debt...we'll just call this little"

A few shimmering seconds pass, and a new orc is "born".

Glancing around, "nobody heard that? just one more little trick. Time to put those faces and bodies you memorized from the chain to good use. I think about 5 or 6 figures slinking off into the woods should be sound, but then again they'd be trying not to make any anyhow...should work. They went to the opposite side, and I'm over here, so option number 3 down there near the dark edge it is...but not a true 90...that makes it too easy to figure out...angle my own way a little."

A little more shimmering off near the edge of the clearing, and some "escaping prisoners" appear to be stealthily creeping off into the woods.

"Now time to see if you remember your orcish...keep the voice harsh and stupid...another smirk...and a little imagery for effect...solves two problems at once....ahhhh....HEY, THEY'RE GETTING AWAY!!!!...well, look at that,...they seem to be buying it. No sale is complete without a salesman to keep you from noticing a defect or two...think I'll tag along until they're out of earshot of the clearing. If they lose interest a few times, I don't think it should be too much of a problem to re-spark it a little with some carefully chosen sights and sounds of the deep dark long as I lag enough behind they can't hear an arcane word or two softly spoken...or hear a branch hurled far off to the side and turn to see a glimmer of movement near where the sucker thrashes the brush. When stuff starts getting iffy, I'll just do the woodsy fade into the forest...and they'll be an "extra orc short"...if they know how to count that is.

No need to pay back the kidnapping debts to them just right now...smirk...I'm sure their superiors will handle that for me when half a dozen of us disappear without a trace...I'll have to just wait to see what I can do to finish the job on those that survive after I get my gear back, and a little rest. So glad those moronic goody two shoe elves and the priest back there didn't insist on rescuing everybody in the chain...that would have been stupid...they meant nothing to us...on the other hand...great big smile...the beatings would have been awesome to behold had the whole chain vanished. Enough daydreaming...back to work. Then I have to go back find that priest that cut me free and take care of two through ten before the "be good" crew starts chirping. Have to admit I do kind of like the idea of being accepted as I am for a change instead of being outcast yet again, doomed to wander the forest alone year after year...maybe I'll stick with them for a while if the elves don't irritate me too much. Uh oh, they're pausing...time for a little sales action...WHUMP!...THERE, OVER THERE!...I can't believe they bought that!...there's 3 month old puppies that would have seen through that!...look at them go!"
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:D Funny! Gotcha Dain. Fooled them with illusions and stuck with them. I must've missed that part--you changing into an orc and tagging along behind them.


Liquid Awesome
Just wanted to put up a quick post to let you know I'm still reading and enjoying the story.

I like the player input as well.

Keep up the good work.


First Post
Out of character note

Just a note to those wondering. Dain is no more or less a central character to this campaign than any of the others. He's just another plain old character. The others just haven't found a timely point yet to insert their own commentaries. Have no fear however, I'm sure the storm is coming.

Enjoy, and avoid the open areas near noon...They're watching us you know.


First Post
Player Introduction to Episode 2

The trip from the smoking ruins of Tavolo Green to Ashabenford took just over two days. Even accounting for the numbers of children and old folks in the group, it was a fairly fast trip.
Hailed as saviors by the other members of your coffle, you have been treated with all due courtesy from the members of the village -- and even the professional soldiers seem to feel you're something special.

You felt secure during the trip southwest to Ashabenford -- the group of Mistledale Riders that secured the town seemed professional and on top of things. They sent two riders ahead as scouts, and kept at least two riders at each cardinal point of the caravan of refugees. Although you might have just walked or ridden along as a refugee, the Rider leader seemed to feel that you could be a secondary security force, so he deputized you as guards for the trip. As this granted each of you the ability to draw a few days of pay(1 gold, 5 silver per day for each person), you had very few reservations about being deputized.

After arriving in Asabenford, the Riders took you and the refugees from Tavolo Green to the Riders of Mistledale headquarters on the east side of the river Ashaba. Ashabenford itself was a small,
unfortified town with no more than 2,000 souls inhabiting it normally. the buildings seemed mostly to be post-and-beam construction, utilizing the abundant oaks and pines from Cormanthyr Wood only a day or so away. The Riders' headquarters building was a small fortified keep with a parade ground and plentiful stables. Some of the riders cheerfully told you about their history, of how their fathers and grandfathers turnied aside a larger army from another dale some thirty years before, and how they were going to do the same with this orc scourge. From their commentary, you gathered that there had been some other raids on hamlets thorughout the eastern portion of Mistledale north and east of the river.

You finally partied company with the inhabitants of Tavolo Green but not before they tearfully pressed on each of you the sum of 15gp, 35sp, 22cp as a reqward for your heroism and leadership.
This money, in mixed coinage from throughout the Dales, Cormyr and Sembia, gave you something to jingle in your pockets and purses while you decided your next move.

After drawing your pay, you found that there were two or three inns capable of putting you up for the night. The White Hart was noted as being the most inexpensive and pleasant for mercenaries and adventurers -- not to mention that the owner used to be a Mistledale Rider and adventurer himself!

You found that the White Hart was a pleasant place, and that 2 hearty meals were included in the 1gp/night rental fee. Holfast Harpenshield, the owner and operator of the 'Hart, turned out to be a gruff but friendly fellow -- short and stocky, with a face like a pit bull's. He readily agreed to give you 2 rooms at the group rate for a few days while you pondered your next move, then his wife cheerfully fed you a hearty and spicy vegetable beef stew with some spring Ale.

And so it was that your first night at Ashabenford passed with little or no controversy, and everyone went to bed.


First Post
Ashabenford Nights (Dain's Vision)

Dain's Vision

You've begun to dislike your reverie.

You don't sleep; not the way the weaker races do, but you do rest when you enter Reverie. And when you rest in reverie, HE speaks to you. At least, that's what you'd prefer to think.

Because the voices that whisper to you speak of riches, of power, of you striding across the face of Faerun like a God, enacting HIS will with a flick of your fingers. It's all so attractive, and yet you can't be meant to do the terrible things of which the voices speak. Surely this is just another stumbling block in your way. Then again, if the voices were a stumbling block, then you'd be mad, wouldn't you? And you don't want to think about that, now, do you? Because how useful would HE find a servant who was mad?

Foolishness! It's all foolishness! Elves are the superior race, comparatively speaking, so it makes no sense that you should hear voices in your head when you're in reverie, unless those voices come to you from HIM. And if you're receiving messages from HIM, then you can't be mad, now, can you? Because you've pledged your life to HIM and HIS desires, and because you don't care to contemplate the alternative, you choose to believe that the voices come from HIM.

Sometimes, if the voices are weak, or if your will is strong (you're not quite sure which applies here), you have a vision:

The man is, like you, one of HIS priests. You're not sure if he exists before or after HIS false death, because he seems to wear signs with which you aren't yet entrusted. Nevertheless, you
recognize him as a True Priest. He is in close combat with a Servant of the Light. You don't know exactly which Power the Servant follows--they're all tiresome and foolish, and the wise don't pay attention to such--but you must allow that the Servant of the Light is quite powerful in her own way.

The two are fighting in a glade surrounded by hardwoods and evergreens. The glade itself is bordered with a peculiar type of mushroom--greyish green with orange speckles on the caps--and there is a low plinth in its center.

The True Priest is wielding a holy sword. One of HIS blessed swords, as were carried by your temple leader and the Holy Father that led you all in your prayers. HIS dark power pulses from the sword, and HIS signet is embossed on the crosspiece. The Servant of the Light is wielding a mace or some such nonsense, and it weakly flickers with a sort of half-light that is almost completely obliterated by the majest of HIS dark power from the Priest's sword.

Although there should be no doubt as to who will triumph in the conflict, the True Priest seems to be having trouble defeating the weak and pathetic Servant. The True Priest's chest labors, and his blows seem less than powerful. Perhaps he's been enspelled; you've heard of enchantments that sap a
person's health or strength. You suddenly realize, with the surety of a dreamer, that it will go ill for the True Priest. In the vision, you are saddened by the fact.

Suddenly, the True Priest parries a strong attack from the Servant of the Light, and maneuvers so taht you can see his face. He disarms his opponent and then steps back. Quickly setting the sword hilt into a niche in the low plinth, the Priest impales himself upon his own blade. His body arcs in pain, then he looks directly at you. You are shocked, for you now can't perceive anything but the Priest's emerald-green eyes, which bore into yours with a frightening intensity.

"It's all yours now... Dare you take it up?"
You are always jolted from your reverie from the words, which seem to come from your mouth, but not in your voice.
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First Post
Ashabenford Nights (Edo's Dream)

What you see in dreams are whispers from Torm.

That's the third statement of Altamir's Fourth Credo. You had to memorize the entire thing when you were ten years old--Brother Caderic wouldn't let you have your own holy symbol until you could recite the Fourth Credo in its entirety. You remember resenting him at the time, but when he finally awarded you the pewter disk with Torm's own hand embossed on the front and your name cut into the back, your pride nearly burst your chest.

You've dreamed lucidly since you first felt the call to Torm's service, three years ago. You know that Torm or one of his saints whispers to you in your dreams. You also know that not everything you dream will transpire, and sometimes such visions are more warnings than anything else.

Lately you've been dreaming of measuring scales. You use the scales in some dreams, while in others the scales are using you to measure the weight of something else. In the current dream, you are holding a set of scales

They are dirty, battered and small. You hold a set of measureing scales in your had and glance up at the merchant selling them.

"I can't tell what they're made of... you surely can't be wanting 100 gold lions for such dross!" you drawl softly at the merchant.

He smiles, "Ahhhh, young Master has a discerning eye. What if this unworthy were to tell him that these scales are mode of the finset silver, crafted in far off Tethyr precisely for his discovery? Surely then he might be tempted to purchase them, no matter what the cost?"

You stare at him, convinced he's crazy, "Surely you jest. These have not the weight of silver, and they are filthy, not simply tarnished. As to being crafted in far off Tethyr, how am I to discern if THAT is true? You tread on soft ground, Merchant. Beware, lest you wake my wrath and cause me to call the constable!"

He glances down at the scale, and then up at you with something like pity in his eyes, "Young Master has surely not forgotten that the things of this world are merely illusions? The dirt is not real, any more than the tarnish. I admit these scales have seen hard wear -- they have not yet been recognized for the treasure they are -- but that wear does not erase their worth to you or your Master. How shall you protect your wards or measure the rightness of an action without these scales?"

"Don't try to confuse me, merchant!" you growl in response, "These scales don't look or feel like silver, and I'm damned if I'll pay you one gold lion, let alone one hundred, unless you give me a good rason to find my purse!"

You've been angrily brushing off dirt and smudge marks from the greenish-brown base of the scales, trying to find a maker's mark, when your thumbnail catches on a lump. You don't stop your hand in time, and a huge gash of some coating pels away from the scale. Underneath the coating is the shine of gold! You stiffen, then look up at the merchant.

He smiles serenely, "You see, young Master? The scales are worn and battered, but underneath all the grime is truest gold. But the world sees not this worth, and will surely grind the scales to
dust without your help. Can you truly not see the worth of them now?"
And of course, you awake before you can ask the Merchant if the scales truly come from far off Tethyr or not. Torm's whispers or not, you wish these dreams could be a trivle more to the point.
What's the significanse of a small set of scales, anyway? Ah, good. It's still dark outside. Perhaps you can get a few more hours of sleep before morning. You need the rest.

Nope, there's to be no sleep for the Servant. When Torm wants to whisper, he just can't seem to stop.

You've dreamed this before. It's a stormy night, with thick clouds before the moon and strong winds. It's the middle of the winter in some large city. You're pretty sure that you might recognize the neighborhood if you ever saw it in the waking world--unless this hasn't actually happened. You're not really sure of too much; but you watch the events nonetheless.

A man and a woman are sneaking out of a large, walled villa in the city. As they slip out the postern gate, you see a new detail. The gate has a sigil carved into each limestone pillar--three teardrop shapes in a triangle. You see the sigil as lightening flashes, and the woman winces. The man says something that you can't understand, then they scurry down the poorly-lit street, avoiding the mouths of alleys that open onto them.

The woman moves soewhat slower than the man; she is heavily pregnant. You know that she has honey-blonde hair and normally wears it intricately braided. the man has ginger-colored hair with a handlebar moustache--you're always tempted to chuckle when you look at it. He continues to urge her forward, but the noise of the weather, the banging of shop signs, and the unknown language they share confound your attempt to understand, but the words are "Apresse-se agora, Syrena, que os homens nao espararao apos a meia-noite."

The two move down the center of 3 streets to a tavern, the Randy Brahma Bull according to its sign, and slip inside. You always lose them there, you never see what happens inside the tavern. Your view always shifts to a sumptuous sitting room, hung with tapestries and rushes on the floor. Dimly, in the background, you can hear the sound of a storm: rain beating down and occasional rolls of thunder.

A middle-aged woman is berating someone, "Que voce significa, eles nao esta la? Este bastardo roubou ninha filha e voce nao sabe onde esta? Devo eu chamar SEU wrath em voce, voce mula worthless? Voce vai encontra-los com aqueles olhos worthless se voce para querer ver uma outra lua. Eu juro, em SEU nome, se voce para nao os encontrar amanha antes do meio-dia, mim desgastar sua pele como uma luva!" The fellow she's snarling at, a large, strapping man with bushy mustachios and a bald head, goes pale and then hustles out of the room. You know that something bad is going to happen and you always wish you could see houw things turn out, but a curtain shields him from view.

The middle-aged woman, with flowing honey-blonde hair, is dressed entirely in rich black velvet. Her gown is broken only by a bright green sash at her waist, and a gold medallion on a matching green ribbon around her neck. This time, your gaze is drawn to the medallion, which is roughly the same size as your holy symbol. Your gaze narrows, and you notice that the symbpl on it is three amber teardrops in a triangular purple field, somewhat like the sigil on the postern gate earlier in the dream. You need details, though. You look closer, and notice that there's a maker's mark at the bottom of the medallion, and then there's a sickly green glow about it; and now you feel nauseated. A cold feeling flows from our eyes into your sinuses, then down through your throat and explodes in a hideous freezing ball in the center of your being. You feel suffused with some frigid ichor, and you're afraid that it must be dripping from your pores. You smell the odor of wood being eaten away by acid...
You awaken in a cold sweat, slightly congested. The morning sun shines in through the window, and you notice that you're alone. That strange elf fellow, Dain, has apparently already headed down for breakfast.

The odd feeling fades with your morning ablutions, and entirely disappears as you take your morning prayers. In fact, you marvel at how hungry you are as you head downstairs.


First Post
Ashabenford Nights (Tethka's Dream)

Don't call this a dream:

You don't ever dream. Or if you do, you don't remember the dream after you awake. A slave doesn't have the luxury of dreaming--not even for freedom.

But you are free, now, aren't you? Your Master freed you after he trained you to be a warrior, then he died and you had to run to this far-off spec on the map to forget him. You have skills you're not quite sure how to exploit and a destiny of which you can't even dream. Sure you have been damned. Surely no GOD could accept your devotion; as no man would accept the flawed love of a slave.

Because you are a slave, no matter what you say, until you free yourself from the bondage of your soul.

You sit up in the bed you've rented with the other two females from Tavolo Green. They've assured you that they aren't going to steal from you, but you can't really trust strangers, can you? Strangers poisoned your Master and threatened to re-enslave you after he died.

You're not sure exactly what it was that awakened you, so you grasp the dagger that you've taken to bed with you and gaze around the room. Across the room, in a pool of moonlight, a greatsword has been driven into the floor. You can clearly see the crosspieces of the guard--they form the arms of a cross, with the blade of the sword being its body. Hanging from the end of each crosspiece arm are two medallions. They glint softly in the moonlight as they slowly spin on their chains.

You aren't aware of getting up, but suddenly you're kneeling next to the sword in the moonlight, which you belatedly notice is coming through an open window in the room. The moon is full--is that right? Where was the moon last night? You can't remember, and you shake your head.

The right hand medallion is round, and has a small sword etched into its iron face. Your name has been cut into its back. Hmph. It's yours to keep, apparently. You rub at it with your thumb; it
seems to be rusty. As you look at your thumb, you realize that the rust on the medallion has transferred to your body, and you feel stained, as if this small amount of rust is somehow defiling
you. You shake your head again--what a foolish notion--and examine the other medallion.

You suddenly realize that your clothes, face hands and hair are stained with dried blood. You can taste its coppery flavor under your tongue. Of course, your Master's training--you've spilled blood, haven't you? You've been stained by that blood; defiled by the killing.

The left hand medallion is made of silver, with a set of measuring scales balanced on a hammer embossed on its shield-shaped face. The design of the scales is brilliant, and the detail and beauty of the medallion causes your throat to constrict for a second. Tears flood into your eyes and you dare not handle the medallion with your stained thumb for fear of ruining it. You'd like to pick up the medallion, but can you really, as dirty as your are? Then someone rests his hand on your shoulder.

"You can take up the silver if you choose," he says. "I have Chosen you, and the silver will wash away the bolld that stains you, if only you desire it. You will have direction and you will have a home. I will bless you, protect you and keep you as my own. You need only take up the medallion to receive my blessing, child."

Reflected in the silver of the medallion is the face of a man. He is dark, with old pain in his eyes and grey in his beard. You can see that he's dressed in a blue hooded cloak, and wears a fillet of silver on his head. Light seems to emanate from him. You look at his reflected face, and then a light flashes in your eyes....
You are sitting up in the bed, morning light streaming in through the window of your shared room. The great sword is gone, and nothing remains of it... but you have the silver medallion clasped in your hand.
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