[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

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While Sylira is by far the most civilized region of Mizahar, countless surprises and encounters await the traveler in its rural wilderness. Called the Wildlands, Syliran's wilderness is comprised of gradual rolling hills in the south that become deep wilderness in the north. Ruins abound throughout the wildlands, and only the well-marked roads are safe.

[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Gossamer on July 5th, 2010, 10:11 pm

~Torc

The root felt solid underneath his hand. At first, it just seemed like any other root from a tree as one would find it in the forest. But as Torc infused himself with his memories and thoughts, the root beneath his hand began to warm. A sensation filled him, as if someone was truly watching him, truly listening, even though he spoke not a single word. Then, in an instant, he was just somewhere else. Magic – the strong taste of djed – swirled at him and drew his spirit elsewhere yanking it abruptly from his form. He was no longer in the heart of Stormhold. He was no longer surrounded by his fellow questers and Glav Navik.

Instead, he was standing on a stone cliff overlooking the sea. Beneath him the view was familiar only…. Syliras’ harbor was gone. There were no ships on the beach below. There were no castle walls around him. Instead, he stood on the ruins of a sea that still boiled – steam lifting off waves that rolled violently beneath them. A man stood beside him, someone tall and noble who appeared fully human but wore his immortality like a living thing. His warm brown eyes held knowledge even as the wind swept back his long brown hair teasing it loose from the metal clip at the nape of his neck that did keep it contained.

“I died there, you know.”
Sylir said, lifting his hand and gesturing to the west. "I gave willingly of my life to stop Ivak’s rage. But you cannot blame him, Torc. There is only one power stronger than peace in this world, and that is love. Cheva fought too, but the world could not live without love so she could not make the sacrifice I did. The world can’t even live without Ivak, though its had to do since the sea was newly made.” He smiled slightly. “Glav Navik is my son. He has the best chance of anyone in this world to ascend to Immortality and take up the place I vacated. It is important he does so. But he cannot do it without freeing Ivak. He goes west to search for him and his prison. The others will not tell him where Ivak is chained. And because I died, I do not know. You see… they have a dilemma. Ivak cannot be freed without the presence of peace because the risk of his instability is still too great. Glav cannot ascend to his immortality without Ivak’s help. Peace does not exist until he ascends. He cannot ascend until Ivak is free. It is a … terrible dilemma.” The god said softly.

“The Valterrian wasn’t caused by Ivak. Rhysol planted the seeds of doubt and hatred and madness in Galifor’s heart. When he killed Kova and ended the Alahean Mageline, the world was shook to its core. She could have been so much more, Torc. She was meant to be more. Ivak’s love for her was not without reason, and between them they made a child. The direct descendent of that child travels with you and Glav. He is in as much danger as Glav is. For Rhysol does not know about Glav’s presence in the world. If he did, he’d send everything he had at him… and he is not without resources.”
The God said softly, then turned to look Torc straight in his eyes.

“If I lived still, I’d mark you immediately and you’d wear three of my symbols, Torc. You are young, untried, and badly need to develop a whole host of skills – first and foremost your confidence. But you are worthy and far more important than you might at first understand. I have no more power though. So such statements from me are empty. But others will seek you out and understand your worth and get you straight into this battle. You are already strong, and your mind will come along as your body ages. Stay by Glav, protect him from enemies both within and without. Make sure he succeeds at his quest. You are uniquely designed with gifts you don’t even know you have, Torc, so that you can.”
He said, then reached up to unfasten something from his ear. It was an earring made of wood shaped like an oak leaf. He handed it to Torc and smiled softly. “It is not much. But wear it always. It will come in far morehandy than I suspect its insignificant form reflects.” As soon as the earring touched him, a sense of peace infused him, calming him even moreso than he already was. “Wear it always. And you will never misunderstand.” The God said.

And then, once the earring came into Torc’s palm, he was back suddenly standing before the Windoak, his hand still laying on the root. Beneath his hand though, he could feel the earring in his palm, captured by his fingers. The cliff was gone, so too the still boiling sea. All that was left was his companions and an empty courtyard filled entirely with a giant oak tree.

~Ulric

After Torc and stepped back and Ulric stepped forward, the oak remained silent. Then, miraculously, the face etched in the trunk moved, its eyes opening and its lips forming words. The tree spoke, for all to hear. Its wooden lids lifted and eyes made of polished oak swiveled and look directly at the seeker, catching his gaze.. “Ulric, only you can decide of your own fate. Only you can choose which, from the hundreds of pathways laid out before you, which is the right one for your feet to travel down. Only you can purify your own soul if you feel taint build up in it. But your goal, and indeed I suspect your true reason for joining Glav on this trip is to find yourself. Coin is easily acquired and does not give you comfort, does it? Have you ever asked yourself why? Once, fishing was enough. But it is not any longer, is it? There’s something missing… something important. I know why. Sometimes all it takes is one good cause, one higher purpose, one important role deeper than your own to motivate you to seek your way. But within you, Ulric, lies the potential for greatness and incredible sacrifice. Whether you know it or not, strange and wondrous abilities lie within you and disquiet your inner peace. It is those abilities that needs nurturing. Just like a crop needs to be carefully tended before it can be harvested, so too does your inner joy. You can find it on this trip. That much is certain. But you need to be able to recognize it when you see it.” The wooden face smiled then and seemed to bore into Urlic’s soul with its eyes.

“Your inner darkness is precious and armor unto itself. Glav will need your darkness, for it is strength beyond what you understand it to be. The hard survive in this world. The hard thrive. And you have been tempered in the best of forges, Ulric. But don’t misjudge love when you find it – for you will. Don’t misjudge duty when you also find it – for you will as well. But you will not find it until your steel is tempered to the point it will be strong enough to survive what is to come. You are a weapon, Ulric. But you will also be the best of companions.” The tree said softly, then suddenly, from its branches dropped out what appeared to be a wooden canteen with a thick leather strap. It landed at Urlic’s feet , sloshing as if it were full of water. “Drink deeply of the sap of the Windoak, Ulric and carry it with you always. It will sustain you and your companions when there is neither food nor drink to be had. It will keep your body healthy and your mind sharp. And it will never go dry.” The slain god of peace said gently, before closing his eyes and ending the interview.

~Carthin

The oak cut him off before he could finish his request. It opened its eyes once more and the wooden orbs bore into Carthin’s own gaze intensely. “No. Enough of that. You are the son of Parfeith Debaer, but you are so much more than that. You are Carthin, and it is about time you started acting like him. You are not your father’s son. You are your own man. Stop trying to be something you are not. Forcing yourself into the family mold will only bring hardship. Instead, create your own mold. I know that will be difficult, but it’s not impossible. You have the will that runs in your family, you just need to make the decision to be that solid rock you yourself know you can be.” The Windoak said firmly. Then, from its branches, two things dropped. One was a wooden bound book full of blank pages. The second was a wooden pen that had free flowing ink. There was no ink well, no jar, nothing, just a pen that had a darkened tip which ink flowed from once it was picked up and put to the task. “It is time you write your own stories, Carthin. With this pen and this book, you have a blank slate and a time to seek to be what you wish. Use them well. They will write themselves faster if you travel with Glav and keep him safe. But if you go off on your own, that too will be an additional tale. Just keep at it, fill its pages, and when you are old and look upon your own son, perhaps he can tell tales about you just as you have told tales about your own father.” The Oak said, softly then closed his eyes.

~Leo

The oak made no move as Leo approached and Carthin retreated. It had simple words for Carthin because Carthin was a simple soul and too young yet to have experienced the things Leo Varniak had. Leo’s life, if anything, was exactly the opposite of the hero’s son. He knew, inherently, there were no such things as heroes. There were only people, in the right place at the right time, making the right choices. That was it. The Oak knew it. Glav knew it. And too perhaps so did Ulric.

“I know who you are, Child of Fire. Fortunately there are many of the living Gods and Goddesses who do not. You have angered a few and puzzled a few more. Even one or two are now your enemies. But such as is life. Far more will support you in your cause… if you let them. But trust is your issue. And so indeed is your rage. It will be your downfall if you let it. It can also fuel your motivation. But there are things coming up that will challenge you in ways you may not understand or anticipate. These coming times will be good for you – and dangerous. Regardless, you are the last of your mortal line – the line of some of the most powerful mages in Alahea. If you die, your gifts die with you and so too the ability to innovate. You must live on… and so too must your line. For that reason… and that reason alone I give you this important blessing.”
The Oak belched then, quietly, extruding a bundle from its gaping mouth in the faced shaped whorl in its trunk. It fell quietly to the ground and separated itself from the odd bundle it made being produced. Four oak stakes, topped with skulls, fell out onto the ground. They appeared a lot like tent stakes, though larger, with glowing gemstone eyes that seemed to flame a ruby red. There was something about them, an aura of power, that was evident to everyone in the group. “Stake out the parameter of your camp with them when you finally go to ground and they will keep unwanted intruders away at night by the sheer nature of their magic.” The oak said softly, thoughtfully.

“And Leo Varniak… know that you go with my full blessing. Glav and you must succeed.” It said, and then grew quiet, waiting for the next petitioner to advance forward.


Mod NoteI ran out of time... a second post is forthcoming for the rest of you but I figured I'd post up the first 2k words before I lost them a second time.]
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Torc Ironwood on July 6th, 2010, 1:08 am

Torc felt the gnarled oak root. The root was cool under his touch, while small grains of dirt made the root feel soft then hard as the yielded to Torc hand. The passing flow of Torc’s aura had the feel of his energy slowly pouring itself down his skin; as it touched the roots the energy felt like a wisp of smoke, slowly drawing itself into the root. He felt like his energy was brushing across something else, then the root began to warm; feeling like a warm flesh under his hand instead of rough wood and smooth cool dirt. The feeling of holding flesh was amazing and then he felt himself drain out of his own body. The feeling was frightening; Torc had never realized how much he had relied on the idea of his form. Whether it was an itch on his head, or the simple smooth cloth upon his bare flesh, it made up what Torc sense as himself, now he felt like a shape of energy. It was beyond all previous experiences, his muscles and flesh were gone, but he had a shell about him. Within that shell it contained memories, feelings, wants, desires, and destiny.

Torc looked down at his hands and waves of energy swirled about them. There existed no sense of solidness and yet there was his hand. A duality of energy and knowledge, his hand knew how to shape iron, it knew the feel of warmth from the forge, and it knew its shape because it couldn’t be anything else. Torc began to realize why some magics started their practice by cutting of the physical being. A person’s aura kept all their energies and experiences in a shell, it was the first layer of natural shielding provided to everyone. One’s aura was made to contain them, in order to create change with your Djed, you had to open that natural shell.

The thought was wiped away, as energy began to wash over Torc. The raw power of a presence began to skirt over him. Torc’s shell quivered as he felt/taste of the presence of the Windoak. Torc’s mind felt the large pressure of thousands of different lines of energy as the presence began to influence it. Torc began to realize that more he focused on his ethereal being, the harder the pressure on his mind became. Slowly as Torc shifted his focus from his aura to the pressure, he was standing on a stone cliff, hearing the wave’s crash against the rocks below. Wind brought a sense of violence from the boiling of the water that contrasted the green grass underneath his feet, Torc realized he was naked as the wind drew across his body, and at the thought of where his clothes had gone they began to mold about his body. They were foreign to his sense of self, and yet a comfortable ease came to his being. This shirt was brown cotton; it had been worn and washed so many times it felt better then silk against his skin. He had lost the shirt long ago from just general wear, and then he noticed the white linen pants and smiled. They had been a gift from Priestess Lara and during the hot summers they allow Torc to keep cool while working. The feel of linen threads brought heart ache for a missed childhood, and love for a woman that was the closest thing to a mother he ever had.

As Torc turned he saw a man standing, and the sense of something so pure and immortal floated within the air. Torc understood why the man had chosen this form; to have tried to sense the energy would… it would have broken though Torc’s shell and burned away every part of his individuality. Torc felt fear and yet the deepest sadness as well. Fear for himself, and sadness for Sylir, even now he couldn’t share his entirety with another. As Sylir began to speak, his fear washed away and only sadness and awe remain. He wanted to ask the God a thousand times for forgiveness. He hadn’t made the sacrifice, because of Torc and that in itself made Torc feel even smaller. He had given his existence for all, that single sacrifice made Torc wish to be better man than ever. He felt all the ego and pride in him dim as he looked at what a man should be. Tears came to his eyes, as he wanted to speak, but every word felt hollow within him. How could Torc speak to Sylir, when even his simple forgiveness of Ivak was so noble that it made Torc weep.

With the revelation that Glav was Sylir’s son and that they would need to set Ivak free, Torc felt the horror and understanding. The world needed balance; men needed their God to once again show them the nobility of their character, and in order to achieve that nobility, they needed to face the rage within. Torc wished to say he wouldn’t let loose Ivak, but Sylir was right. Men needed the chance to become something more and it would require Ivak becoming loose so that Glav could ascend. Yet the end of revelations that shook Torc did not end, the direct descendent of Kova and Ivak. At the look of the God, he knew that a mantle was about to be laid upon Torc.

The mere words that Sylir spoke made Torc feel as if he would take any mantle and not begrudge a single moment of struggle. Torc smiled and merely shook his head, he didn’t need Sylir’s marks, hard work and focus would forever be Torc’s plight and reward. Tears came to him again, this time it was from relief; he had a purpose and knew of the work that lay ahead, that was more reward then any mark the fallen god could bestow. Torc held open his hand and felt the wooden earring fall into it, as he looked at it a question came to him. How does one ascend to godhood, the shell of their aura would stop them from expanding their powers. Was Sylir giving him a seed to help that expanding of presence? A quiver a power came over him, and as he looked at Sylir, he knew he wouldn’t abuse it because of the nobility of his sacrifcie. Whether he had guessed it correctly or not Torc promised upon his soul to make sure every bit of energy, within the bestowed gift, would go to Galv.

Torc felt his physical presence once again, slowly Torc reached up to his upper ear. The earring began to grow into his ear, blood and pain sprang up from the earring as it punctured through skin and cartilage, but Torc merely thought about the noble struggle of Sylir and bit back the pain. As the ring finally sealed itself in growth, Torc whispered to the Windoak, “I never give up on a job till it’s finished, that I promise.” Torc felt the earring and its design, he could feel the oak leaf float about the circular ring, and it some how hummed with Torc’s own heartbeat.

Torc stood slowly, and returned back in place by Glav. He kept silent till Windoak spoke to Carthin, Torc turned to Glav, “Perhaps his lesson is for us all. Though we take up mantles from our family, we need to find out how we carrying them.” Glav might become the next God of mankind, but he was his own man and would become his own God. The purity of man and nobility would grow within him, but he needed to fill his own destiny and his own path to them. Perhaps that was what made Sylir so powerful, the noblitiy of man and the feeling of doing anything to protect it.

As the tree spoke to Leo, Torc realized the other part that Sylir had spoke of. There was a moment of jealous rage towards the man, but then Torc touched the earring and let go of his ego. He let go because this story wasn’t about him, it was about Glav and Leo, and their birthrights. Clam once again entered Torc and he realized that Sylir was right, nobility first starts within, his task was to help, not to overshadow.
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Ulric on July 9th, 2010, 7:36 pm

Silence hung over the courtyard. One moment passed and then another, yet the tree did not speak. I suppose I was right, Ulric bowed his head. He could feel eyes boring into the back of his skull; accusing, curious, disappointed – or at least he hoped so. Ulric was about to turn away when the tree’s eyes opened and words of wisdom flowed from its mouth. It spoke of difficult choices, of forging one’s own path and the power of a higher purpose. Ulric understood the Windoak’s meaning well enough. He was not damned beyond redemption, but his fate teetered on a razor’s edge – awaiting a decision. And yet, the words cut him to the core. Within you, Ulric, lies the potential for greatness and incredible sacrifice. Not all was lost, then. Warm tears trickled down Ulric’s bestubbled cheeks. In awe, he touched his fingers to the unfamiliar moisture. He hadn’t cried since… before.

Smiling, the Windoak peered into his eyes. It seemed to penetrate the depths of his souls. Shuddering, Ulric submitted to the scrying gaze without a moment’s hesitation. He wouldn’t shirk or recoil from the scrutiny, not now of all times. Instead, he stood tall and listened as the Windoak spoke again. It offered him a purpose – an opportunity for redemption. Ulric nodded gravely as he listened. He would serve and defend, but did he possess the courage to fight to the death? Clearly, the Windoak believed he was capable of sacrifice. Perhaps it’s time I believed in my own resolve, Ulric realized. After all, hadn’t he returned to save that lad from a menacing bear? He was no monster – just a man. A weapon for this greater purpose.

Suddenly, an object dropped from the Windoak’s branches and rolled near Ulric’s boots. He picked it up, seeing that it was a canteen. Not just any canteen, however, but an enchanted flask. Wide-eyed, Ulric unscrewed the cap and drank deeply of the tree’s sap. It was thick and cool. At once, a sense of peace washed over Ulric such that he had never known. With this flask, he wondered, I could feed the countless legions of the poor. And yet, he knew that was not his purpose. He couldn’t help but think of the sap as the Windoak’s lifeblood, a substance to consume only in the most desperate of times. Such an artifact could not come without limits and consequences.

“Windoak, you have my thanks,” Ulric bowed. “I will remember what you have told me, and vow I shall not fail Glav Navik or my companions. That is my solemn oath.”

Cradling the canteen to his chest, Ulric returned to the others – regarding them for the first time with a sense of companionship rather than suspicion. He pointedly into Glav’s eyes, hoping the priest understood the role he was prepared to undertake. If I am weapon, Ulric thought, then I must strive to be a shield. The Windoak had spoken of tempering, after all. Only fighting to protect would endow him with that strength Destruction had none of its powers.
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Leo Varniak on July 23rd, 2010, 9:44 pm

The Azenth watched in silence as everyone received advice and gifts from the mighty tree. When his turn came, Leo listened to what the Windoak had to say, wondering how much of the old god Sylir was left within its limbs and roots. Was this merely a facet, a crippled version of the god that once had been, or an entirely new being with a familiar mindset? Leo was always fond of pondering such questions for bells upon bells, but this time his thoughts were cut short by the Windoak's assessment, which was, in truth, quite reasonable. Trust was his issue for sure. Of course, things might have been different had he not grown up living a fake life surrounded by layers of lies and mysteries. And all the enemies he'd collected over the past years hadn't helped that particular affliction.

Rage was an entirely different beast, however. That one was, Leo felt, more nature than nurture, something in the blood that made him go sour and had shaped him into something creepy and implacable. Managing such feelings did not come easily to Leo. For years, he'd never even seen a problem in them at all. Recently, though, it had become obvious that anger alone was only going to get him killed - and his death would carry consequences of the highest order to the balance of the world. He wasn't sure why he cared about the world, but he did. And so, even Leo Varniak would have to adapt, evolve, perhaps even grow.

He blinked twice as the Windoak's equivalent of a face belched and emitted some kind of bundle from its trunk. Gingerly, he picked up the items and gave them a brief inspection while the Fragment explained how they were meant to be used. He winced inwardly at the appearance of the stakes, skulls and all - after Nikali's leash, this confirmed that the gods had a flair for the gothic, the dramatic and even the kinky. Still, it was a useful gift and he nodded at the oak gratefully. "We'll put these to good use. I won't let Glav die if I have a say in the matter."

He stepped back, considering the others around him and what little he had learned about them from their interactions with the Windoak. If the oak trusted them, then they were most likely deserving of such trust. It was good to have allies every now and then, though Leo was far too proud to admit that openly. Hopefully they would make it to Wind Reach without losing a single man, though for some reason, his mind was crowded with less optimistic thoughts. Leo was certain that the very moment they left Syliras, their mettle would be tested in ways they couldn't even imagine right now.
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Gossamer on August 1st, 2010, 6:18 pm

The Windoak carefully listened to Jackson’s request. Like all other petitioners, it allowed him to speak freely and release what was in his heart. The Wind Oak, however, if expecting to be faced with courage and honor and humility had something else coming. For Jackson’s words spoken aloud washed over the courtyard. He asked the remains of the God of Peace to make him a weapon. A weapon. So that he might cut those who opposed his will, whether that will was right or wrong. The Wind Oak seemed to sigh with sadness as the man continued, his passion forthright, his rage bitter.

No gift issued forth. No response came to Jackson.

It was a quick interview that was for certain, for the Wind Oak stirred only slightly and spoke not to Jackson but to the guards. “Escort him from my site. Wipe his memory. If he cannot be wiped, kill him. He is not worthy to traverse the world with Glav and meet all that will continue this war we fight.” The Wind Oak said, and indeed the guards did capture Jackson. They were on him so quickly he didn’t have time to act. Two seized his hands from either side, firmly latching onto him while someone from behind placed large calm hands on his head. They only held him for a moment as his memory of the Wind Oak, Glav’s mission, and the journey that was to follow vanished completely. His world went dark, and even as the others looked out over the scene, Jackson was dragged away and tossed out of the castle. He’d remember nothing of what happened. Nor would he be invited to continue on – the words he spoke were wrong - incredibly so. And no one would make a weapon out of a fool.

~*~*~*~*~*~

When Sharn stepped forward, the Wind Oak’s ‘face’ swirled immediately. It listened to the Jamoura’s inner dialect and then quietly waited for an opening to speak. The Wind Oak’s vestige twisted and his branches seemed to reach out to enfold the Jamoura. “You are most welcome here, my friend. Your race has a long and lengthy life of wisdom behind you that will do nothing but aid Glav in his endeavor. The knowledge and unity the Jamoura as a whole display in the wilds will be invaluable to making sure the party you travel with makes it to your destination. Here, in the city you are awkward and unsuitable, but once you get into the wildlands, Sharn, they will need you like they’ve never needed anyone else. But since you are such a gentle soul, I must gift you with something that will aid in your defense.” He said. Then, from the bows of the branches of the wind oak, a wooden spider dropped on a thin strand of silk. It dropped directly down onto Sharn’s shoulder and tucked itself deep into Sharn’s fur. It was about the size of the pad of his thumb, inconspicuous, and seemingly made entirely of wood.

The Windoak spoke again. “Do not worry for its size. It has a secret and will fight if you need defending. Powerful things come in small packages, so guard it well. It’s name is ‘Onovo.’” The fragment said, then quietly grew silent. It seemed to withdraw upon itself and once more assumed the appearance of a normal tree. Glav, even the knights present, all bowed to the great deciduous giant, and then the doors to the courtyard were opened and the party was carefully escorted out.

They were lead through the castle, down flight after flight of stairs until they came out at sea level and on a gate that lead to the docks. Glav followed them, giving pause only when he saw a second man. The priest seemed surprised to see the young man standing there.

“Akvin Kultra. What are you doing here?”
He said softly, surprised. The blond, who had slightly secretive blue eyes, smiled then, a cold calculating smile. His black leather creaked as he shifted, looking half warrior half mad scientist in the light. He badly needed a haircut. “I’m going with you. You old fool. That might not mean I’ll stay with you… but I’m going nonetheless. I’ve been here since the beginning and nothing ever changes. Its past time I got out into the world again and changed with it rather than rot in Stormhold reinventing things that have already been invented. Besides, if one more upstart bangs on my door wanting free magecrafting lessons… I’ll use them as components. You know that. It’s best if I’m on my way… and you are definitely going someplace interesting.” The man said. Glav laughed abruptly, they shook hands, and together the entire party sans one warrior who wanted to be made a weapon headed up onto the docks and prepared to finally board The Blue Horizon.

Mod NoteI’ll let you guys make any final comments or observations, then I’ll award XP and we’ll see you in the next thread which I will put up today.
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Ulric on August 1st, 2010, 9:15 pm

Ulric watched as the unconscious man was dragged from the courtyard, and then scowled as he stroked the faint streak of crimson on the back of his hand. See that, Krysus? I’m not the man you want. But go ahead and watch, you bitch, and I swear you'll learn to fear mortals before the end. From the canals of Ravok to the corridors of Syliras he had borne her mark – not as a proper gnosis, but a promise. She wanted him, that much was plain, but Ulric didn’t want her. He’d killed in a moment of madness and regretted it every day. For this Lacroix, however, there was no regret. No realization of the devastation that might occur in the span of but a moment. Go to Rhysol if you want that power, Ulric’s eyes hardened. He had made his choice, and there would be no more neutrality. From now on he walked alongside Glav Navik.

Sharn was next, and Ulric was pleased to hear the Windoak speak. No matter the Jamoura’s reputation for peace, he was certain that Sharn’s knowledge would prove a boon on this mission. So they were five; an ape, a reimancer, a mixed-blood, a murderer, and priest that was more than a priest. As Ulric bowed to the Windoak he was suffused with a sense of trepidation. He was the only one to claim skill with a weapon, after all, which meant he was the mastiff, the bruiser, the meat shield. It was not a role to which he was accustomed. Little more than a season ago he’d been a humble fisherman with a bit of skill with the axe. Since then he’d fought off a bear, bested two outlaws in combat, and sustained beatings that might have felled a lesser man. Such was his specialty. Ulric wasn’t the fastest warrior or the strongest, but he refused to accept defeat before death.

Out the gate to the docks, and a blond-haired man blocked their way. Ulric paid little attention to the conversation between Glav and this Akvin Kultra, for he was too busy looking out over the water. So blue and serene, it extended as far as the eye could see, no doubt concealing reefs and all manner of strange creatures. Soon they would return to the Blue Horizon and sail for Karjin, then traverse the mountains and rock-strewn foothills of Kalea to the fastness of Wind Reach. It all seemed so far away in this small moment, when the perils of the journey had yet to cross his mind. In the back of his mind Ulric accepted that he might die on this mission. On the way to Syliras he had clung so fiercely to life, at times seeming to continue onward by willpower alone. Ulric wasn’t certain how he’d managed that. Since arriving in this city he’d begun to question what remained for him. He’d slain his betrothed, and with her the man he’d once been. But now he had an opportunity to become a different sort of man. An honorable man, perhaps, or even a hero. If he survived.

“It is a fine day,” Ulric said softly, “for beginnings.”
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Leo Varniak on August 2nd, 2010, 8:30 pm

With so much for him to think about, Leo remained silent throughout everyone's trials. Some seemed driven by redemption, others by a search for purpose, and a few by wanderlust. One man, who'd seen it fit to ask a dead god of peace about a dead god of war, was shown the door rather abruptly. Good riddance, Leo thought. He made his way out of the courtyard with the others, taking in the sights of Syliras during what was to be his last stroll around town for a long while - maybe forever. The castle's crowded spaces always made his agoraphobic self uneasy, but for all that he disliked Syliras, it was the only place he really knew. His next destination was but a name on a map - a blank waiting to be filled.

Yet Ivak had made it clear that Glav Navik must succeed at all costs. While Leo wasn't sure that Glav would be able to fill his father's shoes even if he were to ascend, he understood what would happen if the seat remained vacant. Glav was the only candidate, and he was far better than no candidate at all. The world could not tolerate the current imbalance in the pantheon much longer, and it would eventually tip over in the ocean of chaos. And of course, while the aforementioned forces of chaos always had spare hordes of expendable minions to launch at their foes, the good guys always came in handfuls - when they were lucky.

Leo allowed himself a tiny smile as he gazed upon the docks and Glav greeted a late participant in the quest, a vaguely familiar face around the city. His thoughts went to the quest ahead, and a strange serenity washed over him, like the quiet in the eye of the storm.

He had yet to see a problem that couldn't be solved with fire, after all.
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Torc Ironwood on August 3rd, 2010, 6:46 pm

Torc looked at the man who just asked to be made into a weapon, from his experience Sylir had been the quintessential man; noble, brave, forgiven, and yet creative. Torc understood that in order for there to be peace one had to battle those that would destroy it. However, weapons and harm were the last tools a peacemaker brought out. They were the last effort to make sure peace was secure, and yet this man thought that Sylir would knight him. As they tree spoke, Torc head shook, Sylir was at least nice enough to allow the man to live given the insult to him. For a moment Torc felt saddened that he had judged another, as he thought about such things Torc looked within and realized that he had judged the man’s response not him. It was a small difference, but an important one.

Judgment of one’s actions allow oneself to improve and avoid mistakes others made. Judgment of another person meant that they weigh the other person wealth against so ideal. Torc realized that he hadn’t given up that one day perhaps the man might grow into someone that could receive a blessing from Sylir, but today the lesson had been given and Torc agreed with it.

As Sharn moved up to ask for his blessing, Torc smiled as he was given a gift of protection. Torc had worried about the large male, but now the Jamoura would be protected. As they left, Torc was quiet as he pondered the whole meaning of his vision and the responses from Sylir. It wasn’t till Glav spoke up that Torc shook himself, and looked at Akvin Kultra. Torc was so surprised and confused at what the man said, and so Torc wondered about it all as he made his way to the ship.
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Sharn on August 6th, 2010, 1:07 pm

Sharn was already scared half to death, just being where he was, not knowing what to expect. He saw the Windoak offer gifts to every single person, comforted them, gave them words of insight and courage, except for one. The last to approach the Windoak before Sharn was not accepted, and though Sharn did not comprehend why (who was Sharn to be able to read the God's mind, fragment or not) it did very much frighten him, more so than he was. The man was grabbed, captured, something else happened with the Windoak itself, and he was dragged away completely. What would the Windoak do to Sharn? Surely he was more useless than that man.

But no, Sharn instead felt the Windoak's embrace. His embrace! It was so awkward, yet the large Jamoura was definitely pleased, almost shivering to know that he was appreciated, that someone understood him. It had been so long since he felt that way. The Jamoura resisted the urge to do his best to hug back or to caress the branches, but he smiled nonetheless. He felt it now, these people, this quest, they were his family and his life for the time being. Would he be able to protect them though? He wasn't sure.

The Windoak, however, knew exactly what was going through Sharn's mind, he knew him so well, eerie but delightful. He dropped a small wooden Spider onto his shoulder, which did not hesitate to hastily burrow down into his hairy body. Sharn gently placed his bare palm over the spot it vanished and he returned his gaze to the Windoak, nodding in understanding, yet still understanding little of the situation. "Onovo, I will protect it with my life. I will do all in my power to return Onovo to you someday." Sharn nodded again. It was rare that Sharn broke promises, yet it was rare he made such difficultly executed ones as well. Still, Sharn knew he would protect Onovo with his life, which was ironic since it was there to defend him.

"Thank you."

And with that last word, Sharn reunited with his new family, as odd and mix-matched as they were. They were escorted out, though their walk was short before a man interrupted. Sharn listened to the short conversation between Glav and the newcomer, which had a spooky appearance about him, but moments later, seeing as how Glav seemed to accept him, Sharn felt himself ease. Sharn could not remember a time in his life that he was so tense.
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[Act 1 - The Departure] The Blue Horizon & Beyond (Invite)

Postby Gossamer on October 2nd, 2016, 11:41 pm



The Fates Have Spoken
Here is your thread grade!


Character: Leo Varniak
Experience Awarded: Investigation +5, Logic +2, Tactics +2, Observation +5
Lores Awarded: Glav: Leaving For WR, Inarta: Have amesia against Ivak, WR: Rhaus lives there, WR: Glav Feels It Needs Investigated, Blue Horizon: A Cromster, Finn Hanli: Blue Horizon’s Captain, Wysar: Disagrees with Glav, Wysar: Friends with Glav, WindOak: Location, Purpose, What It Is, WindOak: Has Given Leo Its Blessing, Windoak: Has Given Leo A Gift

Loot: Four oak stakes, topped with skulls, fell out onto the ground. They appeared a lot like tent stakes, though larger, with glowing gemstone eyes that seemed to flame a ruby red. There was something about them, an aura of power that was evident to everyone in the group. “Stake out the parameter of your camp with them when you finally go to ground and they will keep unwanted intruders away at night by the sheer nature of their magic.” The oak said softly, thoughtfully. These stakes hide simple encampments within their parameters from prying eyes – even the eyes of the Gods.

Notes: It was a short but sweet setup thread with some XP to be earned. IF anyone returns and wants a grade let me know.



As always PM me if you have issues.


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