.:| Quote |:.
"In darkness, no one sees you bleed or cry..."
-- Kierath Ranamor
.:| Vornae Proverbs |:.
"I no naka no kawazu taikai o shirazu."
A frog in a well does not know the great sea.
"Ame futte chi katamaru"
After the rain, earth hardens
.:| Libraries |:.
October 26, 607 ER Gather - Eventrade, Blackwell
The gather began somewhat inauspiciously as I waited for the Lady Magus to arrive and settle in. Beryl, Thorne, Beck, and the others staying with us left fairly quickly, but I busied myself with setting up a ward and arranging all of my things. Eventually, the Lady Magus was settled in and we made our way to the tavern to see what was transpiring.
Upon arriving at the tavern, we learned that a number of glowing eyed humanoids had been attacking the town already. They seemed to be immune to most everything except normal weapons. As this was being discussed, Raven and Shiney came bursting in saying that someone had put a ward on their cabin and left the key in the lock. Having some concern for our accomodations, Beryl, Mariko, and I headed back to check. Arriving first, I found that a similar ward had been placed on the door to Beryl and Thorne's room, and the room itself had been ransacked with a number of formal magic scrolls taken. When the others arrived, Beryl virtually exploded with rage, having thought that someone else was placing the ward on their room for them. Unable to calm her down, I left her with Mariko as she was casting a ward on the outer door and headed out into the darkness in search of the thief. After fifteen or twenty minutes of searching, I eventually caught up to the thief as other members of the town cornered her and subdued her. Upon searching and finding all of the missing scrolls, I left her with Beck and Geryn to be taken to town and questioned while I returned to secure the scrolls once more.
When I returned to the tavern, Thorne had the individual in the celestial circle and was attempting to question her. I don't believe they got much useful information out of her, as eventually the questioning died down and the perpetrator was executed. At about the same time, several spirits appeared in the earth circle and attention turned to them as Samara and Palor began the resurrections. Simultaneously, Shiney, Raven, and several others were investigating a strange box that had been found earlier. As the second of the resurrections ended in failure, a banshee appeared in the circle in place of the woman's body; thankfully everyone was able to dive for safety outside of the circle, with Thorne having grabbed the bones to be blessed.
Following all of this, I found myself simply wishing to be alone. In hindsight I probably should have told someone where I was going, but in reality I simply slipped out of the tavern and retired for the night without telling a soul.
The early afternoon was something of a blur for me, and one that I would partially like to forget. I had just finished my shower when I saw Shiney and Raven being carried off by some of the Gresh. Nihaalan, Beck, and Beryl rushed to their aid, but were dropped as well. The Gresh then moved off carrying Shiney and Raven with them, allowing Geryn and Mariko the chance to dash to the aid of the others while I attempted to quickly dress. Upon rescuing the three of them, they immediately sent a runner to gather the town to mount a rescue operation. Much to my frustration, after yelling at me to finish dressing and join them, they decided to leave without me and not even make a mention to me that they were gone; I learned of this as I stepped outside to join them after hurridly gathering my armor and things to find the area deserted.
As it was well past noon and my stomach was rumbling, I decided to make my way to the tavern to see if I could find something to eat. Sadly, with no one left in town, I was out of luck. This did not do anything to help my mood, so I stalked my way back to our barracks building and decided to crawl back into bed and meditate until I regained my calm. It was at this time that Mariko exited her private room and sat down to speak with me, and we found ourselves soon joined by the wild elf Cusseta. During this conversation I found out about all of the spirit totems that others had been mentioning since the prior night:
- Bat - Rebirth, bringing fears to light. Bat is nocturnal and can only be spoken to at night
- Firefly - Guiding light, inspiration, more concerned with the grand scheme than the smaller parts of the whole.
- Goat - The complimentary totem to the Firefly. It is concerned with the more direct form of guidance.
- Beaver - Beaver is the builder and craftsmen's totem. He instills the ability to go above and beyond ones normal limits in respects to craftsmen.
- Squirrel - A Finder of things, most especially resources.
- Opossum - The totem of Strategy and tactics.
With that decided, Mariko and I decided to head to the tavern to find some food. We were intercepted by Geryn, however, who informed us that the town was preparing to sneak into Elliston and attempt to free some children that were being held in an orphanage. He was on his way to retrieve components, as a spirit walk was being discussed as a contingency plan of escape, so Mariko joined him on that task while I hurried on to the tavern for a hasty bite to eat. It was good that I did, for I was not even able to finish my sandwich by the time they had returned and the town departed with our guide.
To sneak past the Gresh patrols around Elliston, we were led through a series of sewer tunnels underneath the city. As we made our way upwards onto the streets, the sight of devestation around us was astounding. There was no time for delay, however, as we quickly made our way to the area near the orphanage. The street passing in front of it had for the most part fallen away into a deep crevasse, and we were forced to leap from one pillar of rubble to the next in order to make our way to the orphanage entrance, while at the same time battling several Gresh and one of the smoke creatures. Several times we had to face our camrades as Gresh after they would fall and then be "infected", but we eventually reached the orphanage and were able to rescue the three remaining children inside.
Upon returning to Eventrade, we found Cusseta waiting to take us to see Squirrel. I quickly gathered my "gifts" as directed and returned to find not only Shiney waiting, but also Grumdin and Inga! To visit Squirrel, we were taken to the spirit realm. She was a bit high-strung, but seemed quite happy to have visitors when she realized that we had brought gifts. She told us that she could help us in acquiring things if needed and marked each of us with the mark of an acorn. The others accepted the mark upon their face, whereas I had her mark one of my notebooks...she found this quite appropriate for me, considering that it was one of my own "stashes". She then sent us back to Tyrra, and I joined Mariko in returning to our lodging to change and prepare for feast.
Feast was an interesting affair. G & I Entertainment put on a costume party, and the Oberon made an appearance. This became even more interesting as he used a curse to have us all be as we were dressed. Beryl, who was dressed as the Fell Witch, became as a dark elf with draconic wings, while Thorne grew into the form of a Balrog. Others made similarly interesting changes, which led to feast being exciting for some and quite uncomfortable for others.
Following the meal, there was a competition of skits to go with the costumes, as well as a magic show by "The Great Greeneanie". I then left the tavern to get money for the small item auction and to donate to the refugee relief effort, at which point I learned that the curse was lifted by exiting the tavern.
After the conclusion of feast, I changed clothing and then made my way to the darkened pavilion nearby. I asked the one person I took with me to simply keep watch over me as I tried to take advantage of the thinness between the veils of life and death to contact my mother. While I was not successful in the sense of my mother's spirit manifesting so that I could speak with her, several things did occur which led me to believe she had at least heard me. As I concluded what I set out to do, ww discussed what all that had happened might have meant. Our consensus was that whatever force was behind what I experienced, I seem to be meant to carry forward with my quest for answers.
We returned to the tavern in time to find a lone Gresh skulking about in the darkness. Together, Mariko and I managed to defeat it, although it was trying its best to draw us out into the darkness. With it taken care of, we joined the rest of the town at the tavern and began discussing the day's events. I took this opportunity to speak with Baroness Samara about her offer to me. I was somewhat disappointed, as we were not able to speak as privately as I had hoped, but I managed to gather enough information to make a decision with.
After some random undead attacks, the only other incident of note during the evening was the appearance of the Fear Lord that was tied to the box discovered the night before. He set his scarecrows upon the town while he went directly after Samara in an attempt to retrieve his box. He even tormented several of the restless spirits around in an attempt to weaken the Baroness' resolve, but she did not waver. Eventually, he tired of the "game" and left, but not before much havoc had ensued.
Following this, the Lady Magus and I chose to retire for the night for some hot chocolate and discussions before bed. A steady stream of others joined us, and much interesting information was shared before everyone eventually retired to their beds for some much needed sleep.