Whispers in the Night

Whispers in the Night

While the Mystic Pearl has cornered the market on average magical items, there exists a shop in Venza that caters to the winds of chaos, harnessing them to bind souls into items, creating the most precious things in the world, magic that thinks for itself.

People in the know, even in whispers, only refer to it as 'that place'. For it is known that the owner can regularly do what a mage might only be able to once in their lifetime, breath life and sentience into something which had none before.
Rules: While there are mechanics to intelligent item construction, this is the one part of LPF where the mechanics are hidden from the players, characters and even judges. Gold is not the only currency bartered within these walls. Even the binder, with her extensive power is not able to guarantee a result. This is because friendship cannot be bought, it must be earned. Personalities are as fickle as the dice of fate.
Nobody really remembers when, but rumors tell that the shop simply appeared one night. Anyone looking at the massive sixty by eighty foot, four story, stone structure easily dismisses the tale as idle gossip. The massive oak double doors, twenty feet tall, are large enough that one assumes even a fire giant would be comfortable entering this place. A raised wooden porch, extending from the building twenty feet in every direction marks a territory few dare to tread. Although the building is set off from, and higher than its neighbors, it seems to be cloaked in shadows. The walls are polished gray stone and contain no windows.

If you approach the door, a pair of knockers greet you.
"Good evening. And your name is?".......... "Do you have an appointment?"
Interior main room description, unfinished, but sufficient for the moment.

Inside the door, the main showroom is two stories high, with open stair cases on the left and right walls, leading to a balcony and floor above the back half of the building. The main floor is spacious, with few obstructions. The mithral suit of armor at the door, with a greatsword ready, stands motionless but, considering the reputation of this place, you can assume it is ready for service.

Shelf after shelf of books line the walls above and below the staircases. A few books are propped open in stands or on podiums around the room. A small demonesque creature waves you in and motions for you to sit in one of the two luxurious chairs at the far side of the room, near what looks like a more customary sales counter.
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[sblock=Current Inventory]none currently[/sblock][sblock=Items who own characters]Soon Hafísbíta will accept the service of Kalinn Ari[/sblock]
Anaerion heard tales of the powerful binder when he was shopping in the Mystic Pearl. He had tried himself several times to bind and upgrade the amulet that his father given him so many years ago. However, every time he tried to do so, he was unable to bring sentience to it.

After his experience at the Crypt, Anaerion knew that even as strong as a wizard he was becoming, someone or something is always stronger. In order to stimulate his growth, Anaerion needed a mentor. And what better mentor is the very item his father used as his own bonded item?

He was prepared to knock on the door when it spoke to him, when he was startled by the knockers themselves. He quickly composed himself, saying "My name is Anaerion, and unfortunately I do not have an appointment. However, I have been told that this was the place a very powerful binder lived. I look for his assistance."

Once being allowed in, a 2' flying demonesque creature waved him in, pointing to a seat cushion that looked fairly comfortable. Sitting down, Anaerion quickly wraps his brain around what this creature is.
While standing at the door, Anaerion feels a powerful wave of magic flow over and affect him, as if the entire house was examining him. Immediately following that a second spell, this time coming from the right knocker, tries to invade his soul. This second spell, Anaerion is able to shrug off. The knocker smiles. "You are worthy to pass Anaerion. It is our job to send away the weak ones."


After the servant has seated Anaerion, there is a bit of a pause while waiting for the mistress of the house. Looking around, there are three things that stands prominently. Thousands of books line ornate wooden shelves upon the walls. Rose vines seem to wind through the shelves, some growing from the shelves themselves. All colors that mortal man has ever looked upon seem to be represented in the roses. No two roses on an individual vine are the same color. Um, copper, a copper rose shouldn't exist, but in here it does. Third, in the murals and paintings upon the walls, in several relief carvings, there are dragons. Again, vibrant colors that mortals do not expect are common around this library and home.

From behind a curtain which likely leads to a back hallway, a beautiful elven woman, in her prime, comes out the greet her guest. With mithral colored hair and lavender eyes, this elven maiden is dressed in luxurious silks and walks with courtly refinement. She approaches and lounges comfortably in the other chair. The only items she seems to be wearing are a headband, necklace with an amulet and a few rings.

"So, Anaerion, you have come to test your destiny. What is it you are looking for?"

[sblock=Kn Arcana or Planes DC 13]The servant is a homunculus. A construct servant that, while it does not speak, can communicate via telepathy to its master. This one looks stronger than normal.[/sblock][sblock=Perception DC 15]Maybe to pay a little respect to her neighbors in the city, red and white roses are conspicuously missing.
As you talk, her hair and eye colors seem to drift and shift across the rainbow.[/sblock]
Anaerion stares all around, wondering how much all of this cost. Clearly, you can clearly see how unique this place is. He observed the paintings of the dragons, partly hoping they would spring to life, and partly imagining how impressive it would be to fight against such a fearsome creature as a dragon.

Anaerrion also was tempted to pull down a book and start reading it. He was going to buy research materials back at the Pearl, to supplement his knowledge of fascinating creatures that exist in the world. He was most impressed, however, with the roses. Very few of the colors where recognizable, and he impressed by all the different colors. He considered trying to determine what type of magic is used to create such a majestic display when the elven woman entered

Startled the woman knew his name, Anaerion was going to ask her how she knew it before he realized it was the doorknockers out front who informed her. Reevaluating how he was going to approach this, Anaerion says "While you know my name, I am afraid I do not know yours. And as for what I am looking for, I have an answer for that."

Standing up straighter in his chair and leaning forward, Anaerion continues with "Magic, is by its very nature, impossible to under stand fully. People dedicate years to study, and only scrape the tip of what one is able to do. Others are able to wield it with such force that only armies can stop them. However, there is magic that can heal, mend, and recover what was once lost. It is both a great gift from the gods, and a deadly power that others wield for their own satisfactions. What I look for, is the answer to the question 'How should Anaerion use magic to help those in great need.'"
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"In my work, a name has power. The power to bind. The power to control. Power you probably would never be able to wield, but power I choose not to relinquish. I will tell you this, my name has not been spoken aloud since before your father was born."

"Heed this well; I desire to only be spoken to, never spoken of."

After a long dramatic pause to let that sink in...

"It is sounding like you are struggling in your mystic talents. Your heart sounds good and just though. Are you by chance considering joining the priesthood?"

She can only stifle a giggle for about thirty seconds before she busts out laughing at her guest's flustered face.

After regathering some composure, "Why have you come?"
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Anaerion nods meekly after this womans's explanation of why she refused to give him her name. While it made sense, it imparted on him just how powerful this woman is. And indeed, Anaerion grew even more flustered after she suggested going into the priesthood. Growing more embarresed by the second, he was very glad that none of his other companions were allowed to know about this...

After being asked, in what Anaerion felt was a more direct manner, for some reason it clicked. He looked into this mysterious woman's eyes, and he said with out hesitation "A partner. That is what I seek. Someone who will help me grow, as a magician, but also the understanding of myself."
The hostess continues to stare into Anaerion's eyes as if reading a book. "Interesting choices there... Hand of the Mage." Being too impatient to wait for the timid guest to spell things out. "Well, I have never done that form before, but I can accomplish that." She looks around the room. "I have to start making preparations. Sit here." She rises from her chair and floats to one of the upper bookshelves to retrieve a couple books. After a bit of searching, she finds two that are perfect.

Returning to her seat. She takes off one of a matched pair of rings and places it on his ring finger. She then hands him a small book. "Turn to page forty seven. Memorize the ritual chant on that page, syllable for syllable, for you shall need to perform it perfectly in an hour or two from now. After you are absolutely certain, you shall read aloud from this other book. The bardic tales inside will clear your mind and help draw a compatible soul that share the interests you seek."

"What we are about to do takes unflinching strength of will. Your tests will be painful to endure. But if we are successful, you will have a unique bond that cannot be broken by even the likes of me."

"If you are ready?" holding her hand out, "Give me your father's amulet. I will start the cleansing and reshaping in the back while you study your ritual."

After Anaerion hands over his amulet, "Seal the doors!" and a heavy thud and clank of a lock is heard from the entry.

"Do not move from this chair.
Do not perform any magic
for it shall disturb the balance
of my home and the ritual."

Pointing to the first book, "Now begin." After Anaerion starts reading, she stands and walks to the back, behind the curtain.

[sblock=Books]The first is in draconic, but it is an ancient dialect. While all the lettering is the same, some of the words do not make sense in the modern form.

The second book is in elven. It contains several bardic tales and songs, one of which you heard as a child.[/sblock]
Anaerion looks a little confused at the sudden request, but quickly realizing this person knew best he took of his father's amulet and handed it over. He felt a little... off without it hanging around his neck.

When the woman sealed the doors, Anaerion knew that whatever he was getting into, was very complicated and potentially dangerous magic. He then spent the next half hour reciting the strange Draconian ritual. He understood about 75% of it, but the few words that he did not recognize where enough to miss the full meaning of the ritual.

Once he was able to recall every part of the ritual perfectly, he looked over the 2nd book given to him. Most of them he had at least heard of, but there was one in the middle that seemed to recall a fond childhood memory. The Traveler. It was a story about an elf bard who traveled the world, and the experiences that he saw. The nation of Heth when the lizardfolk ran it. The nation of Jirago and beyond. The city that was before Venza. It spoke to him while he was younger, but even more so now that Anaerion had started his own journey. He smiled faintly, caught up in the memory of so long ago, and started reading it to himself.
Having spent longer than expected in her preparations, the hostess returns after three hours silently to the room while Anaerion reads the bardic tales. While he is engrossed in the story, she moves behind his chair and whispers, "Time for the tests to begin." Having come to expect the unexpected in this place, Anaerion is not spooked and calmly waits for his next order. "Close and place the book on the other chair." He obeys. "Stand and put on this blindfold. We cannot afford to have your mind wander while traveling through my home. And I guard my privacy well." Anaerion hesitates slightly, and then puts the blindfold on. "Now repeat the ritual." As he starts to recite, she takes his hand and recites her own ancient draconic incantation. Anaerion's practice pays off as he is able to perfectly recite the incantation despite the distractions.

"Malkorvian is the name of the spirit that will inhabit the vessel. He has chosen to join you in your journeys. He is longing for new stories to tell and you and your journeys shall provide them."
She places a smooth prism gem in his left hand, and a weighted wooden ball in his right. "Cast Mage Hand to show Malkorvian how it is done." "But I..." Even thought Anaerion had not memorized the spell today, the gem in his hand warms and he is able to to cast the spell. "Now, raise the ball in your right hand to an inch past your fingers. Good, now spin the ball." Not seeing his target, it takes more concentration to to accomplish her commands, but he is successful.

Placing her hands on his shoulders, "Walk while keeping the ball spinning." She guides the blindfolded elf through the house, behind the velvet curtain that sweeps open across the floor before they arrive and through several turns in the back hallways.

Anaerion feels a tingling sensation wash over his body. This new room bristles with energy and life. Plants brush his legs as he continues to walk, birds sing, animals growl, chatter and hiss. After another thirty feet, she pulls back on his shoulders and he stops. She adjusts him slightly, so that he is standing next to a slowly bubbling stone cauldron.

"You have been holding the ball up. Keeping the ball rotating and the same distance from your fingers, turn your arm down. Start repeating the chant over and over. After the first completion, push the ball into the mud ahead of your fingers and keep it spinning."

[sblock=ooc]You are blindfolded. The air bristles with energy. A thousand noises of forest life fill the air around you. The heat rising off the cauldron of mud feels about bathwater temperature. Do you follow her instructions?[/sblock]
Anaerion stuttered only once, at the moment he felt the magical sensation wash over him. However, long trained to focus intensely on his current task (which he learned after pouring over hundreds of tomes and books), does as instructed. He was walking a little slower than he normally would be, given that his concentration was split between chanting the Draconian ritual, holding the ball out a set distance and spinning it, and navigating in the dark.

In front of the cauldren, he could feel the heat raising off it. Spinning the ball over, he repeats the ritual once over. Having repeated it so many times now he speaks the ritual once, while moving his arm to match (what he believes) is a perfect 90 degree angle to the cauldron. He tries to time it so that his intake of breath of the first syllable of the second time through, the ball passes into the cauldron.
"Deeper" she commands. Anaerion follows her orders, pressing his hand into the mud deeper, so that it comes half way to his elbow. "The final test."

Anaerion continues his chanting as she starts her own. With a flash of pain, his protection from the heat disappears. He struggles to maintain the chant while the scalding liquid sears his flesh.

Seeing him struggle and about to falter, with a single word, she strengthens his body's commitment in a most cruel and unusual way. Anaerion's hand will not move to retract from the molten liquid. His lips will not move to chant the words. He continues the chant in his mind as he tries to block out he pain.

Just as the pain becomes unbearable, it suddenly stops as if it is just no longer there. Blindfolded, held immobile, he can only continue to focus on the chant in his mind.

Meanwhile, she lets the severed hand sink in to the molten mithral, seeing as the slice from the keen katana had been clean and true.

Knowing the 'boy' is in no real danger because of her preparations, she leaves him immobilized as she starts her precarious part. Having not dismissed her fire resistance, she reaches in and retrieves the hand. Smoothing and shaping the metal, she poses the fingers and inserts a sandstone rod at the other end to make the hole for the eventual pendant chain.

With a long incantation few have ever heard, she binds Malkorvian's soul into the bones and metal. He flexes the fist a couple times before finding a comfortable place to rest. Once he is ready, she drops the hand holding Malkorvian into a bucket of water, quenching the heat and sealing the form.

Turning back to Anaerion, she pulls the blindfold off. Even though the ring and the air around them have been doing their job slowly, she casts a regeneration spell to speed his recovery. "I have never had someone offer up their own hand before. Quite impressive." With a wave of her hand, the hold person spell is dismissed.

Anaerion looks at the stump which has already started to grow back.

"In a minute or two when you have recovered, you will put the blindfold back on, and Rollifilo will lead you back to the chairs where you will sit. I still have work to be done to finish Malkorvian's binding and training."

The demonesque servant is hovering patiently, waiting upon your recovery to lead you back to the main room. She turns and retrieves Malkovian from the bucket of water, continuing with her work.

[sblock=ooc]Now the dice rolls to see what random qualities you get. Please give me several D100 rolls labelled: CC, CB1, CB2, CB3, CP1, CP2, CQ, CL, CR. [/sblock]
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Anaerion could not believe that his own hand was being used to create this new amulet. He shuddered a little bit as his hand slowly grew back, thanking the gods that the only thing needed right now was his hand.

After a few minutes of watching the woman work, Anaerion flexes his hand to ensure that it worked. He stood up, nodded towards the flying creature, and blindfolded himself. Once he felt being tugged in the right direction, he started walking back towards the area where he first came in.
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Once Rollifilo has returned Anaerion to the main room, he removes the blindfold and motions for him to set. Dutifully, he does. The homoculus turns to the other chair and heaves, straining to lift the story book, but moves it, placing it in Anaerion's lap. He then silently returns to his perch to watch over the room.

After a couple more hours of reading, the lady comes out from behind the curtain. As she crosses the room, "We are finished. Malkovian is enjoying his new home. Things have gone better than I expected. He will protect you well in your travels. And you shall be his feet."

"I have three more demands left."

"My ring back." Anaerion happily takes off the ring, offering in back, but it is Malkovian who snatches it up with his mage hand ability and returns it the hostess.

"The coin you expected to pay when you entered." Malkovian tries lift this as well, but the pouch of coins is too full hand heavy for him. She steps forward and takes the pouch.

"And lastly, swear on your soul you shall never battle against a dragon."
Anaerion's heart races and flutters. She was reading his mind from the moment he stepped in. "You must respect the dragon!" Absolute fear sets in as Anaerion feels he is now the center of attention, for the gazes of all the dragons in the paintings have turned and are now focused on him. Some are reaching though, gripping their frames and preparing to pounce. Flustered and scared, he gulps and then gets the words out. "I swear!"

"Thank you." With his oath given, she spreads the delicate mithral chain that Malkovian dangles from and places the necklace around Anaerion's neck. Smaller than it was before, the three inch mithral hand still stands out prominently on his chest. Turning and walking over to a book case, she snips a rainbow rose and returns. Placing the rose in his hair behind his ear, "Remember, you shall tell no one of what you have seen or done here. I value my privacy."


"You may take this book as well." handing him the story book he was reading. "We are done. You may go."

"Th-thank you." As he walks out, the pictures continue to stare at him.

Once on the street, those who notice the rose as he approaches, turn and, not so discretely, move in another direction.

[sblock=ooc]JackSlate45 will get a private web page detailing what Anaerion gets to know initially about his new friend, and the personality traits 'guidelines' that I have come up with. The personality can be tweaked a bit as he sees fit.

His next GM will get a fully detailed private web page detailing the full powers and secrets involved, as well as how the dice rolls played out.

The dice rolls were favorable. Enduring the sacrifice, multiple small bonus abilities emerged of varying degrees with no ill effects. Anaerion just may not learn of them all immediately. Coin spent: 4,100 gp. Original desire: 14 CHA, bard aspect, 1 spell 3/day. Full details may be recorded into this thread later after they have been revealed in game.
"Mistress, Mistress, we may have found him! We may have found the sleeper!" "Settle down Peet. What news do you have?" "My apologies mistress for shouting. Sleeth, our newest tarnished dagger member was listening to the old Song of the Hunt last night, and he recognized a blade described in the song. A blade that passed through weeks ago. Our dagger is stationed in House Masarinni. Apparently, the Masarinnis had an expedition that was under siege, and needed to send in supplies to the expedition. In the group was a woman with skin white as snow and hair as silver as, well, umm" unable to even finish the sentence.

"Where have they gone?" "To the jungles near Sangre de Sol my mistress. There is a large dig a week out from that city." "What else did he see or hear?" "He thinks the woman introduced herself as Cay Lyn." "Nothing more?" "He is young my mistress. Give Sleeth a decade or two and he will get better at remembering what seemed trivial at the time."

"This is a start. I have to consult with an old friend. You have done well. Tell Sleeth that I am proud of him. To awaken the sleeper will be a grand day indeed."
The Hunt

Her consultations went well, as it had been a very long time since the two had spoke. He was most surprised to hear of the news and would be available if needed, when the time was right. But for now, he would wait for more news to be brought to him. For her, every minute detail of the blade was fresh in her mind. After parting, she started preparations. This was going to be an extended hunt. Something she had not done in decades. But, the prize was great, so she assembled every trick that she could. While she had never bothered to learn to enlarge spell areas, as this search could easily use, extending them was second nature to her.

Once prepared, she heads to the roof of her home. An aerial search will be the fastest. But being seen leaving home for an extended time would not be wise. So, the casting begins. She disappears from view and prying eyes. With more casting, she takes flight. But even this is unsatisfying. So, she lets loose. As her arms extend and her body shifts, her quiet flight turns into the heavy flapping that even those with great power fear to ever hear. She climbs higher and higher into the night sky, circling over Venza. The City of Glass is a magnificent sight at night from upon high. But she has work, so she gets her bearings and heads out. After a few miles, "Well, so much for stretching out these wings, there is no need for the slow path. To Sangre de Sol it is." Considering her size, the pop of the teleport is audible to birds who may have been passing.
After using several extended locate object spells while in flight, she finally feels her senses pulled. A battle below is starting. The white haired woman does have the prize. Now the work begins. Her consultant wants to know if this woman is worthy, so patience is going to be a virtue. Going invisible again, she picks her plan. Pulling a scrap of cloth from her haversack, she tosses it to the ground along the path. It returns to its natural state. A dead orc on the side of the road is nothing special considering the dinos the woman is fighting. Using a silent teleport object, she sends her haversack containing her other tools home. At last, she changes forms back to her old favorite, she lays down beside the orc, dispells the invisibility and waits.
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"Interesting..." she thinks. The group is taking the anonymous body back to their encampment. It was just a disposable orc she had picked up at the undertakers, but it does show there is compassion in the person she has been asked to study. So far, she is looking worthy of carrying a paladin's blade. Time will see.

Examining this woman that carries her is getting to be a fun game of cat and mouse. But being prepared for this, quickened silent memory lapses are keeping this woman quite in the dark about her visitor. Just as she notices something mystical starts to affect her, the thought fades away. The investigation is going to take days, with timeouts for recharging spells, but with being nearly immortal, the visitor has the time.

This woman does carry the lineage and heritage of her proud old friend. But, there is another heritage that is also tainting this soul. The internal conflict is very polar and fascinating. The power struggle may make the coming task more difficult. Well, not difficult, but painful. Only time will tell.

On the other hand, the slumbering child, he is another story. The curses laid upon him are quite evident. But they would not be strong enough to keep one of her children silent for any length of time. Surely not hundreds of years of slumber. Delving deeper, she finally sees the connection. "That's a viscous combination! I will have to tuck it away and use it myself someday." Knowing her friend would not approve, she will keep the secret from him. Understanding what she does now is half the battle. Undoing the damage of this magnitude will take delicate preparations. Analyzing the battle to come will be difficult. Only a handful of souls in this world could attempt to free Hafisbita from his prison. Therefore, it must be a trap designed to shift the balance of power in the world. Careful planning and exacting execution will be required to not get caught in this trap. Then again, she could wait out the balance of the 780 years. He would wake up on his own. Unless it was extended. That would be truly cruel. She tucks that thought away too.​
"Mistress, Umm, I have another report for you.
Quote, It's him. It's him. Toad Kisser is back. The dirty one. Unquote.
I don't understand it either, but the newbie wanted that passed on to you."

"Mortals and their strange customs. What do you expect from them? It was probably the one more interested in whiskey than a wounded man. It doesn't matter. I have my mission."

Thinking to herself, "At least this woman is worthy of honor. Now if she will just pause to sleep so I can get some work done. Ah well, she will do that some time. No need to interrupt this rescue. A paladin is joining the cause. Maybe she will learn a thing or two. It is good for her to see a example of what she can be."