Dawn of the Red Moon

Char'rissen dal Uxia d' ilta iston lu' tangin:
Messages from Uxia on her nights and days:

We ran across a few familiar faces… I think I prefer seeing the Tiefling more than Eldarion’s again. They had with them a goblin ranger who, with her wolf, aided us.

The next day we arrived at “Goblin Manor” and proceeded to loot and kill. Alundra apparently is in some danger of becoming feral… I’m really not certain how that works. She hit tried to hit Rhomaug over his head with her staff but little came of it when she passed out.

...All in all it was a good day, I suppose. No one died after all. Sure we’ve taken a bit of a beating but… we’re not dead.

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Second Missive to "Grandfather" Laik

"Grandfather" Kolom Laik, I Salute You

From the distant City of Baldur's Gate, I greet You. From half a Fist of Moons of Time I greet to You.

Oh, "Grandfather," do not carve my Name from the Gate of the Academy. Let my Story yet be long, and the End of It be better than the Start.

In this Land I have found a Bog of the Mind. Here have I learned how far I have yet to travel before I may be called a Son.

Since last I made Words to You a Species of Filth has clouded the Thoughts of my Mind and caused my Dreams to be black and silent. My Dreams have been as the Grave where the Body sleeps without waking. Yet, even in my Days did my Thoughts fail to yield any Color of Reason.

Here have I first known War. At Home I knew only the honorable Clash of Disputes between Hero and Hero. Here did I come to know that Storm of almost-constant Thunder as the (cursed dragon emblem), Death dominate the dishonorable amon them, have fallen upon the crumbled Bones that once was a City. The mighty Men of the Wolven Moons likewise have mounted Seige — no, have broken in upon the City as Waves upon a Warren of Sand upon a Beach. Fighting has been so constant as to become more as breathing.

In the Tales and Hymns we learn how War may drain the Blood from the Hearts and Minds of Warriors over Time, and it seemed This was also occuring in Me, but having returned again closer to my usual Tower of Observation, I suspect there was more of arcane Tampering than mere Weariness.

For about a full season I found great Opportunity to hone the Blade of my Skills upon the Stone of Battle. In this ravaged Land I found One who recognized your Hand in my Gauntlet and he honored me with his Coin in exchange for my Arm.  So handsome was his Reward I have obtained some few Books and other Objects to lend increasing Depth to the Etchings of my Mind.

But such was the State of my Observatin that I failed to smell the Stench of Bondage. My Patron brokered Workers with other Patrons, except that these Workers were Slaves, "Grandfather." I defended the Works and the Person of this Chainsman, "Grandfather," until only last Evening when a powerful "Cousin" violently assaulted my Mind and the Wind of his Words fanned asside the Fog of bitter Ignorance.

"Grandfather," Wisdom is sweet to possess, but bitter to gain. Your Words remain true, as I testify in this Missive.

My Blood tells me I should have better seen. My Observation tells me I am not the First to be deceived, and even the Greatest knew failure before ever They knew Victory.

In the Midst of my drowned Thoughts I found a human Lad starving as the youngest of a large Family. For less than the Price of a pack Mule I bought this Lad, named Aedvard, from his People, that They and He might better eat. When the Deadalive "Cousin" awakened me to a grim, yet clearer Dawn of Observation, I asked Myself if I had become the very Monster our Kind despises. But Aedvard is only bound to me by his Oath and not by Chains. I treat Him as a Smith treats the very first Form of any Blade, but the Lad complies as his own Lights show him. I say to him, "Feed the Animals," and he does so without my Instruction — lest he asks — and I do not watch him to see that he complies. I have had no Cause to chasten him, as he was starven when I found Him and thus too dull to make Resistance, and by fair Dealings as He fed and recovered he has found the Desire to serve well. He is a Fist of Suns from breeding, and He may not make a Warrior, yet I see for Him a Tomorrow of excellent Service as such Implement as He decides to become. He may not make a Sword, but He has the Metal to be a Hammer, a Spear or other honorable Device.

As this Missive departs my Hand on its Way to you, "Grandfather," I depart yet again under the Auspice of Sir Trink of Baldur's Gate. I have been restored to the Company of the "Cousins" I first met when I landed Here the quarter Sun apast. We return to the decrepit Place where once a Scholar amassed Knowledge of (cursed dragon emblem), the Sword and the Dirt for Those of darkest Hearts. One among us, a human Spellsmith, has shown Respect for Those we hold in lowest Regard, and so I make Room in my Observations for Any that may possess Honor, but never forgetting the capacity for Sin among them, or the Sin that Kind has spilled upon our People.

May these Words find you well, "Grandfather." May the dull and honorless Ground that is the Beginning of my own Romance yet produce a Blade upon which is deeply and well-formed the Name of my "Grandfather," and of my Father and Kin whose Names will yet be restored.

If that One who betrayed our shared Name still lives, may his Days be as Nights of Nausea, and his Nights as burning Noons of Fever, until I return to cool his (cursed dragon emblem) Heart forever and, in doing so, restore even his Name….

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Char'rissen dal Uxia d' ilta iston lu' tangin:
Messages from Uxia on her nights and days:

2/13/09 Hmpft.

I went to that arranged meeting with the cretin I’ve been working for. He apparently was trying to sell slaves to some other business man who would then ship them off to some other city or location… I suppose that’s frowned on here- Making slaves out of city dwellers. I guess it was back in the Underdark… I didn’t exactly spend most of MY time roaming outside of the walls of the Delyl House.

Anyways. That ever-so-detestable creature Borris was sent by Trink to bring Rhomaug, Nibbles, myself and Alundra out of a kind of… kind of fog, I suppose. The vampire smacked our halfling around basically until we recognized her (black and blue as she was… I only caught on as soon as Alundra shouted out her name). Borris wanted us to kill our employers. Nibbles seized the moment and slew Rhomaug’s boss and really at that point what was holding me back from laying out my own?

The fog was lifting from my memory. The Flaming Fists weren’t around anymore… We had raided the dragon cult and there was a shade who mocked my frie party and threatened me. It said it would “expose me”. I’m… not afraid of a shade. It can do nothing to me but make me worry and I won’t shudder over the prospects of an empty threat.

The only threat I can see right now are those damn werewolves. Three attacked our band as we made our way back to “Goblin Manor”—One even bit my neck! I was pissed.

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Quips and Giggles
From the mind of Nibbles

Hey Journal, I can’t believe I misplaced this thing! It’s not like I carry too much stuff around. Well… there was that dragon statue toe and the random—anyway! I’ve got my journal back. yay, yay hurray.

As the humans say, “another day another dollar.” I don’t know what the hell a dollar is worth, but I made a little something to live off of today. I’ve not seen that guy with a black hat for awhile, but I don’t need to be seen with a guy that tall when I’m doing what I do best.

Nothing more to say I suppose… yep…

toodles.

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Char'rissen dal Uxia d' ilta iston lu' tangin:
Messages from Uxia on her nights and days:

2/6/09 Someone broke into my place today. I found the door hanging open and went in to inspect the damage. It seems the theives weren’t hungry, only cold as the spider meat I had planned to eat for the next week remained and my sheets did not. Ironic, I suppose, as my home has become a place for me to rest… as if one can get any of that with these dragon attacks, but as soon as I was able to afford one I purchased myself a Bag of Holding which has allowed me to protect myself from most of the pillaging.

I think my boss might have some elven blood in him… which would explain a little bit as to why I keep dreaming about a dead body. I think it’s his, but it’s strange that the very notion wouldn’t fill me with glee.

Nothing else is of importance… Not that these are either. Things were so much better in Delyl.

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Char'rissen dal Uxia d' ilta iston lu' tangin:
Messages from Uxia on her nights and days:

12/6/2008 Most of us felt the urge to be moved by our pockets today, I suppose, and thus our looking for work brought us to that half-elf “Chaz”. The lizard-man decided to sit out while he let the ladies go to work. He was wise enough to refuse the money the halfling offered him. The over-world is so backwards. I did well, I suspect, to not raise an eyebrow at it… but blending into this city’s culture is growing more difficult.

Chaz had us go to the port to find “Kun’chiro” and make back some of the wealth that Chaz lost in a deal. We found his warehouse empty… and left his moneybox in the same state thanks to Nibble’s crafty lock-picking skills.

Alundra found Kun’chiro on board a ship and, as we sent the rogue on her way, we approached him in hopes to get some answers as to what Chaz’s deal was with him. Irritating male. He brought about no answers and I’m almost certain that when we were walking away he… Oh nevermind.

We returned to Chaz with the money… after taking one hundred gold for ourselves. He then divided it into fifths and gave us one fifth of it which was the original pay we were to receive. With the lizard-man again we found ourselves followed. To confront him we found ourselves a dead-end alleyway which ended up being at our peril.

Changling rat-men came from above after Alundra threw an arcane missile at one, provoked by foul memories.

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Thoughts and Giggles from the Mind of Nibbles

Mood: Apathetic Sooo… Boris is of very little help. He’s actually quite useless for such an ancient and sassypants person. The group had decided that we wanted to get some work, buuuut that’s not happening any time soon. Sir Trink thinks that he can find us some work sometime soon, so we’ll be in touch. There was a large dance off between the two (Sir Trink vs. Boris and his Tiefling lady friend). After quite a few rounds and questionable lyrical rhyme schemes, Sir Trink beat the pair soundly. I think… I will have to ask the others traveling with me if that actually happened. There’s something about this elf lady’s house that makes me dream all crazy (I think it’s the mushrooms and vermin she keeps around).

Anywhoo… I love my dress, and Chompers seems a little depressed. I think that the lady in the market was his mother, and that means Chompers looks really good for his age. I don’t think that’ll cheer him up, though.

I need more money, but I doubt that the people of this town would see good acting talent if it punched them in the rear.

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Char'rissen dal Uxia d' ilta iston lu' tangin:
Messages from Uxia on her nights and days:

11/16/2008 Discussion… much of it has commenced. I’ll be honest and admit I’m not quite endeared to this aspect of travelling much, but then again I’d rather not stay in this city very long. I know our names are travelling around in whispers to ears belonging to enemies. Am I a coward to hide from death? Do these people see me as one?

Trink has invited us to dinner but turned us loose upon the city to whittle away the hours of the day left to us after the ceremony. The three others decided to go shopping through the mass of street vendors down the road, bringing us to a reunion of those four bandits who attacked me on our last trip to the goblin manor. They were in an arguement with the cultists over their attire- that is they were wearing gear similar to or probably of fallen Red Moon Cultists. We pretty handily defeated the better of the cultist’s group, two running for their lives, and won ourselves more treasure off of the hands of the thugs.

Some old woman was felled in the dispute and Nibbles had issues with her gecko. I’m not sure what quite happened but I can’t help but feel that the creature will be of some distraction to us later. However, with another hour left Rhomaug the lizard-thing bought a tiara and glass jewelry for Nibbles who managed to find a dress in her size.

We found Trink and went to a winery sort of place when low and behold that wretched creature who lead us to believe he was Trink came in. It turns out his name is Boris, a vampire, and comfortably acquainted with Trink. The fruit wines are quite delicious… much more so than anything I’ve previously tasted.

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First Missive to Grandfather Kolom Laik
Rhomaug experiments with correspondence

"Grandfather" Kolom Laik, I Salute You

From the distant City of Baldur's Gate, I greet You. From half a Moon of Time I send Word to You.

The People here are much given to writing and to shipping their Despatches to distant Companions and business Associates.

This is my humble test of such Endeavor. I recall that You expressed appreciation for such recorded News from afar, and offer This with hope that You may find any Merit in It.

As You warned, this Place is both disappointing and yet strangely compelling.

In my relatively short Time here I have seen Wonders and Crimes, and am gaining Comrades.

My Time at your Academy was not the Scat my Father warned of. Already your Instruction has saved my Life from Peril, and Peril has stalked Me as a Questing Beast. In the City no more than half a Sun, I was felled by dread Forces I cannot yet explain, or even describe. On that Night I saw the deadalive Remains of a skeletal Wyrm (Death to Their vomitous Kind ever, and ever) climb resolutely from a molten Pit hidden beneath the City, and under a Moon as red as Blood this Fiend (Death to It ever, and ever again) launched Itself into an attack. Immediately thereafter I and four previously unknown Persons have been targeted for Destruction by a vicious band that renders Aid to the pestilential Vermis (Death to It ever, and yet ever), were set upon by a dark-elf Murderer without a shred of Honor (yet we fought Him and Our smallest Comrade ended His Life, restoring to all our Honor), and we just this Day restored our good Names among the local Authority.

I regret, "Grandfather", to say I have earned Death twice since last You saw Me, most recently only Yesterday.

[11.09.2008]

One of the Five, Uxia, a handsome Dark-Elf, maintains a modest Dwelling in the City and after a catastrophic Skirmish with three great Spiders in which three of Us kissed the Foot of Death without embracing It, we spent a full Evening there to recover. I made a warrior’s Morning, rising midway between first Sun and full Sun, as did Uxia. The Others — one Half-Man called “Nibbles” and the two Humans, Alundra and Eldarion — had risen early, Servant-fashion (as is common in the City, no Dishonor to Them) and gone about Their own Affairs.

Uxia and I set Ourselves to return the Remains of a City Guardsman murdered by the dark-elf Assassin but blamed on Us and clear our Names. Outside the Door was a Squad of hardy Sylvan, One of Whom possessed a magnificent hunter’s Bow, led by One named Shaddar Nur, of the “Company of Elves.” His Aspect, and those of His Hardies, was warrior-proper. I recognized that Such were hired to find Us and recover the remains of the fallen Guard. I asked that These direct Me to the nearest guard Station, but They know Duty and preferred to escort Us there. Such Correctness is to be found Here in some abundance, “Grandfather.” It is a place with bountiful Potential for Honor. Your Description was Just.

Yet, for all It’s Valor, the City has been all but sacked by Attacks from Wyrm-Kind (Death beyond measure to Them ever, and ever) and by the Honorless Who enslave Themselves voluntarily to Them (Death to Them ever, and ever). Shortly before Our return to the City, an entire Shift of the “Flaming Fists” was destroyed by What I call the Cult of the Red Moon. We discharged our Obligation to the Fists and purposed next to find Goblins in the City, seeking Intelligence about the Whereabouts of a scholar You might find Friendship in, “Grandfather,” named Rand.

When We departed the underground Station of the Fists, a local Fellow by the Name of Lou accosted Us and presented Us with a Summons (sealed with a waxen Sigil showing a Book, a Quill and a Sword) from a local Sell-Law of our acquaintance named Sir Irving Trink. When We arrived at the Offices of Sir Trink We found Nibbles there ahead of Us, similarly commanded but wisely waiting for better Numbers before entering.

Here We saw again the Clerk, Who gave His Name as Ralph. He instructed Us to sit. When Uxia did so, She vanished. I looked around to Ralph, starting to assemble the inner Components of Force to seek and free Our Mate, but Ralph explained that the Chair sent Things away. Rather than be separated, Nibbles climbed upon my Loins that We would arrive together at the Destination.

Such Destination was below Ground. A Goblin in ludicrous Wig and Attire aping a human Sell-Law took Us to a Chamber where We found Rand, Who introduced Us to an oddly aspected Human named Sir Irving Trink. Duty bound Me to warn this Trink that We had encountered Another We took to be Him, but We may have misunderstood. This Other demanded that We find Rand and report to Him again. We intend to report only if and when We are in a Position to confront Him and demand Truth. Recent Experience informs Me that We need not seek the Other, but that He will find Us.

Rand, Who has a professional, if loathsome, Fascination for the Vermin (Death upon Them ever, and ever), revealed more Intelligence about the ancient Chain of Causes We Five appear to be shackled to.

Trink is a Purveyor of Intelligence, and knows Facets about some or all of Us. When Alundra arrived from her own Errands, He revealed to Us that She bore three Fangs from Wyrms (Death ever, and ever again, to Them)! As You advised, honored “Grandfather,” I took no Offense from Alundra’s wretched Betrayal. Not a Betrayal, of course, for She knew not What She did. Like too Many of Her Kind, the unspeakable Crime of the Vermin (Death and Nothing else to Them now and ever) is unknown to Her. (Alundra also harbors a wild Thing … a winged Serpent with a Sting in its Tail … that resembles a Fiend in miniature, which She calls “Orin.”)

“Grandfather,” I fight the slowness of my Heart to absorb Your Words concerning the Filth. Your Counsel has the Tone of Truth. Certainly the Brutal (I will not call Death upon Them all, in Respect to Your Will) possess Intelligence as do all Persons, and Variety. How well I know that even my own Kin may harbor Cravenliness (Death upon Gherig and His Memory ever, and ever) and, so, some among the Wyrmian (Death to All Who work Dishonor) may possess Honor, tough as That is for Me to conjure.

Trink took us to a Goblin Shaman named Oomphlok, Who practiced His Craft with the use of Herbs, and my Companions (save Eldarion, who has yet to return from His own Excursions) and I departed This World to sojourn a Time in the Trail Above and Behind. There We saw a great Tree, heard the Song of Battle, and beheld Five Greats … one female Eladrin, one female Human, two male Humans and a female Dark-Elf. These were armed and armored in magnificent array and I knew Them to be Legends.

These Legends spoke: You have Questions.

Said I: Why were We spared from the Dragon’s Escape?

They: You did not release Him?

I: Not knowingly did We.

Alundra: Did the Teeth I possess release the Fiend?

They: No. The Teeth summon the Dragon Warriors.

(This puzzles me, “Grandfather.” In This I yearn for Time again at Your Feet.)

They spoke: The dragon-sage (meaning Rand, no Dishonor upon Him) can instruct You in how to use the Teeth. You must trap the Dragon again, as did We before, and send Him back to Shackles again. The Cult is only a minor Obstacle. Deal with It quickly.

Said I: Are You the Five Who imprisoned the Dragon?

They: Yes. We used His Pride. He thought He could defeat Us. And He could have.

I: May We know Your Names?

They: No.

Again, They: You must find Karreck the White Bear. He is not fond of People, so You will need to convince Him to help.

They continued: You have an Advantage over Us. He (the Cursed) cannot harm You directly. Now it is time for You to go.

I rendered to Them Our highest sword Salute, Grandfather, with Your signature Flourish. May You carry more Honor with You to the Next World!

I became heavy of Head and after a Time I paid the Price of such vision Quests. We were given Time and Towels and clear Water to recover from the Journey, Honor to Trink and Rand for their Nobility.

After recalling to Trink Her Experience in the other World, He discerned a Method to conjure a Man-of-Armor from One of Alundra’s Artifacts. He spoke to Her a Word. She thrust the Fang into the Ground and repeated the Word, and sprouted up an impressive Construct made all of Armor. It knelt and announced Its Service to Us, awaiting our Command.

With this new Tool in our Satchel of Advantages, “Grandfather,” We will face again the Turmoil of this Place and demonstrate What Honor and Courage may lend. May the Swords of our honored Dead ring from our own Scabbards.

Fare You well, “Grandfather.” A Son of the Academy greets You with Respect, and with this Quill in the Place of a Sword, I render to You the Salute of our Profession. [Swirling knot of ink]

May All Who know Honor and Courage remember your Name ever, and ever always,

— Rhomaug

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Char'rissen dal Uxia d' ilta iston lu' tangin:
Messages from Uxia on her nights and days:

11/9/08 Things were certainly productive today, I suppose. It started out looking like our previous luck would continue as when the others were out and about with their own business and I was left with the Rhomaug the lizard-thing and an ELVEN company at my step. They offered their names (like I could care less) to take us to the remaining Flaming fists who have stationed themselves on the top of the hill, protecting the rich. They… ought to. But I ought to be among them.

Anyways, the Fists got their head back, racid as it was, and caught us up on the recent damage of the city. An entire shift, a third of the fists, had been hacked and slashed to death by assassins, and chaos and cultists had been reigning in the lower city. We were given rights to attack the cultists and then a letter by a curiously brisk visit from that Lou creature. Sir Trink had asked us to come to his office.

Arriving in his underground office, we were greeted by his many lawyer’s and researchers as best that goblins greet their guests civily and then by Rand and the real Sir Irving Trink. Whoever that was the previous night was probably a cultist spy. We plan on throwing him off later, but at the time we were then updated about Rand’s latest discoveries on the parchment depiction and offered the chance to partake in a ritual that would win us familiarity with the original individuals who sealed the dracolich, then dragon, we encountered as well as allowing Alundra to access use of a Dragon Tooth Warrior and instructions to deal with the cultists and then seek out Karreck the White Bear. Rand is suppose to know more.

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