From whence goes Iderath

What Evil...
** GM Update **

Our band has traveled forth with William seeking some guidance at the Worship of Life. The All Father has sent a wise Leader and three stout hammers to accompany them into this profane place. Within, they discover the resting place of Shimarn, a potentially blasphemous tome, thousands of feet of underground tunnels, and a lair of powerful undead.

Within the lair, they find this scrawled on the wall of the dank cellar:

Stimons, Near Blind of Nic
|- It is Harbinger of Destructions victory
+- We must greatly protect Clay Mother
+| Who Will birth the Nightwolf
| From here unto the Steward Revenant bring this word
|| It awakens the curse of White Death
Ж Once born the Night Wolf Child
|+ That is a bloodless victory
|Ж Against those who oppose Chaos
++ I now know the Clay Mother
+ The Signs approach

Note that the Ж symbol is actually 3 lines, a wide X with a line down the middle, on the wall

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Shattered. Speechless. Heartbroken
Indigo

I want to blame someone. I want it to be The Domini. I want to rail and shout and beat him with my fists until he cowers in a corner and cries and whimpers like Si’can does inside his tent.

But it is not his fault. It is no ones fault. Si’can is who he is and does what he does. His curiosity and his desire to KNOW all about the world around him lead him to step through that horrible portal. How, or why he was sent back, I don’t know… but I almost think perhaps he should have refused.

I could not take him home. Wil did that for me, for Si’can. When darkness came and it was safe for me to walk the streets, although I changed how I wore my garments more times than I stepped over dung in the streets, Si’can was gone. His home abandoned. Empty. No friend. No odd little rat man with more curiosity and more genius than the rest of the city combined. Gone. I don’t know where he went. But… I will never see him again. Never hear his odd turn of phrase, his little anecdotes…. never get to say goodbye… or to say that I am sorry.

Because, you see… I am to blame. I let Si’can down. I let his curiosity grab him and take over without offering any voice of reason. I destroyed his life’s work and his reason for living. I am ashamed. I am worthless. I couldn’t do a simple job correctly and I couldn’t take care of a dear and fragile friend.

Heartbroken this one is… soul weary and wishing she could go home and curl up in her bed and sleep until the pain goes away.

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The Obstacle.
A Campside Story, by Will the Farmboy.

After the difficult task of crossing the river, again, withan injured and despondant ally, Will is reminded of one of his earliest ‘adventures’, long before he made the journey to Iderath.

As a boy (a younger one than he is now, I mean…) Will had explored the area around his village when his chores allowed the time. Not as dangerous as the beast-haunted wilderness further from civilization, he still had occasion to use his limited survival skills to preserve his own life. While gathering herbs for the village apothecary one afternoon, he was caught in a storm, the heavy rain limiting his visibilty to a scant few feet. With no desire to shelter under the trees in one place with the risk of lightning, he tried to make his way home with only the echoes of thunder and the hissing of the falling rain as company, but it sson became apparent that he had been turned around when he came to a river, swollen with the extra water and carrying uprooted trees large enough to pulverise his bones.

Will thought he recognised the river; downstream he would find an ancient stone bridge and a road home. He gathered his near-useless hood at his throat, and, supported by his staff, carefully made his way along the high bank as the angry river roared a few meters below him.
The spray and the rain combined into a heavy mist; Will had to wipe his face free of water every few pages despite his hood, and he cursed the ‘water-proof’ garment and the traveller who had sold it to him. But he soon spied the dark shadow of the bridge ahead of him, the road of hard-packed dirt leading up to it transformed by the storm into a quagmire of slippery mud, the distant end vanishing into the sleeting rain.

Happier now that he was in familier territory, Will began to cross, coming to a sudden halt as the stone-work ended in a broken fissure, revealing the slate grey river beneath his feet.

Something had struck one of the supports, maybe a tree, perhaps a boulder brought down from the mountains by the ferocity of the storm slamming into the stone, and the age-old ediface had given.
The gap was only about three yards wide, but seemed further to the young boy. But he knew that with the river swollen there would be no crossing up- or downstream for many miles, and even if one of the shallow areas was still navigable, the objects hurling down the current would kill him anyway.

An older, wiser head may have sought out somewhere safe to wait out the storm, a cave or perhaps the dwelling of one of the rangers, charcoal burners or lumbermills who inhabited, however sparsley, this stretch of forest.
But Will was not old, and he was not wise, and he was too confident in his own abilities. He discarded his staff so as not to interfere with his balance, retreated to the start of the bridge and turned to face the yawning gap, about seven yards away.

Then he began to run. His boots slapped on the wet stone, and within a few paces he reached the very edge of the stone, and threw himself forward. The river passed by underneath him, and he bent his legs as his feet caught the far stones. But the bridge shifted beneath his sudden weight, and his legs uncoiled again as he made a second jump, blocks easily three times heavier than him splashing to the water as he fell to his face on the cold stone.

He took a few moments to gather his thoughts and his strength, the odd creak of tortured stone dying to silence around him, and then rose and walked as fast as he dare to the solid ground. He realised he was tensed for another jump, but soon reached the sucking mud of the road.

The rain seemed to be getting heavier, the wind howled around him, and he could hear, deep in the trees, the crack as branches snapped from the trunks and fell to the ground. But he couldn’t suppress a smile. There were no slavers to fight, no outlaws to bring to justice, and no noble but easily impressed young women to rescue, but his heart was racing and he felt alive.
The jump, the exhiliration, he would keep in mind while he performed his chores in the Black Sow.

FINI.

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This one gazed into the abyss... And now Sican knows it's eyes.
Sican AlTehrin

Anne Bah’hanur Once told sican never to let his interests take this one. When Sican would get caught toying with things that weren’t his, or going into place Sican was told not to, Anne Bah’hanur would tell Sican “Eğer karanlığa bakıyorum eğer, yakında, biliyorum, ve sırt dik dik olacaktır.” if Sican stares into the darkness, soon enough, it will know, and stare back. This ones caravans Anne was a wise, old adventurer, but sican never took what Anne told him as anything more than myth, or story… Now Sican see’s that Anne was not a crone, but a scholar, trained only by experience. Who knew that it was this ones curiosity that would be the end of Sican? Sican always thought he would grow to be the Babasi of his caravan, and pass his knowledge onto the Yavu… This one has lost everything now, Sican’s notes, Sican’s research, Sican’s maps… and even Sican’s greatest invention. No more does this one feel the emotions of the world at Sicans fingers to use, now it is only the pain, and sorrow of many.

Sican is betrayed… the very halls that this one had felt so at home in, were to be his tomb, if it had not been for Sican’s caravan. The warmhearted, Abi william, and the shadow walker did not kill Sican however. They knew he was no more like them, then a common rodent was to them, yet they did not sever Sican’s life chords, even if This one wished they had. But there is one last interest of Sicans… The abyss, the darkness… eternity. Sican has seen it, felt it, devoured it with this ones very flesh, and lived. Surely there is a reason, but without Sican’s notes, there is no way to find a connection! The very blackness that took Sican’s life yet left him living mocks This one with every moment Sican still lives. The Divine truth, that the minds of mortals can not understand. Now that Sican has seen it, Sican must understand it. As much as it saddens this one, this one cannot attain such knowledge with the burden of flesh.

In my tongue, we call it Morarmıs. The black, the great walk… an endless desert of black sand where those like Sican search for their reason. They say the sun never rises over Morarmis, nor does the moon, but this one cares little, Sican always felt at home in the dark, the night stalkers could not find you if it was dark, and you were still. Before this one breaks Sican’s bindings to the mortal world, Sican will leave the city, under the cover of the night. There is no sense in leading the Rakashan to Sicans Caravan, so This one will walk until his feet will take him no further, and there is where Sican will begin his Journey through the black sands. This one would only like to thank Siwmea indigo, Abi Rocky, Abi William, and Babasi Bartholomew for showing Sican one final gesture of kindness before this one died, but Sican would rather die to further this ones research, than to live where Sican cannot. Sıcak kumlar iyi arkadaş, This one prays you do not weep for Sican!

“Eğer karanlığa bakıyorum eğer, yakında, biliyorum, ve sırt dik dik olacaktır.” if Sican stares into the darkness, soon enough, it will know, and stare back. Sican does not fear the gaze of the darkness any further, in fact, this one Seeks it!

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Letter to Yvonne III
Will the Farmboy.

Yvonne,

For the first time since I have left the village, I fear that I may have made the wrong choice. I thought the life outside the inn would be one of glory and adventure, but now I realise the true hazards.

We were given a task, a simple one I thought at the time; find the burial site of a Saint, and return with a holy relic. I have already described to you some of the challenges we faced on our journey, but when we eventually found the tomb, I saw the power of true evil. Our first views were of a strange feast hall, decorated with symbols that puzzled even the Domini, and soon encountered our first opposition. Dessicated, walking corpses that rose up to attack us. It should of course have been our first clue that all was not as it seemed, but we spent the next hours passing through a trapped, undead haunted maze of secret doors and rooms decorated with, as the Domini later pointed out, the profane markings of evil Gods. Clearly something was wrong here, a sense of unease passed through our entire group, but we pressed on regardless to fulfill the mission we had been given.
And my friend Sican paid the price, very nearly with his life.
He found an ornate frame containing a rippling pool mounted on a wall. I did not see him step through this ‘portal’, but was there when we pulled his poor, burnt body back out, barely alive. We healed him as best we could, and returned at haste to the city, from where I will send this letter. But I do not believe he will be willing to continue with us in future. I returned him to his home, and then returned to the temple, hoping this would just be a tempory pause in the quest.

On a different note, I have relinquished my choice to gradually rise as a Hammer in the temple of Blood. For now, the life of a freelance adventurer, like my friends Indigo and Roxninger will earn my keep in Iderath, while I work out what I wish to do with my life. That there is Evil out there beyond our walls cannot be ignored, so no matter what I choose, I know I must stand against it.

The All Father watch over you.
Will.
P.s When I get chance I will return to you with money, and some items for the Sow’s kitchens.

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And- to return
** GM Update **

Our intreped group continued further into the underground complex, returning to the beginning to travel again to the other “leg” of this place. They discovered more danger, but little else, until a fateful encouter by Sican, that forced their decision to return to the temple, and explain what they found…

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More things for this one's archive.
Sican AlTehrin

This one is considering staying down here in the dark. Perhaps Sican could set up a new laboratory down here. The night walkers would never know what to do with a room with no floor, or even a corridor that does not end. Sican is also very interested in the temples traps. Fire from no-where and small strings that shoot needles. Perhaps this one can convince Siwmae to add these to Sican’s home. Then, even the guards would not bother Sican further… This one is quite at home here in the dark, something refreshing about it.
p. The warm hearted one must be angered. His temple sent him to find a temple of his warmth. They were wrong, the temple is of some forbidden father that makes the warm hearted one destructive. Abi william does not seem interested in the faith of the metal clad ones warmth any further. Perhaps now would be the time to show him the power and interest in alchemy!

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How peculiar
Domini Kole Bartholomew, Aspirant of the All Father

My voyage into this temple has take yet another unexpected turn. First the symbols of the forbidden father now an endless hallway, Also in this blasphemous place I no longer feel the All Father within this place, and this entire place just feels like ice. Though, my mission still remains paramount; I must regain the circlet!

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Hallway to nowhere...
Indigo

Sweet Silent Shaz! THAT was unnerving. A corridor that went round and round… only didn’t and wasn’t… That crazy obsessed Hammer walked us right into some bizarre trap that had us boxed in with no exit. It was seriously a thing of beauty though and beckons me deeper into the hill rather than out. Traps are not something I have encountered in my life. Locked doors, clever latches on windows, but the people of Iderath are secure in their mundane fixtures and rarely stray into the devious and deadly forms of protection. I suppose if I were a thief traps would be part of my training, but since I am a deathly shadow and not a sticky fingers… well.. the subject didn’t come up much in my training. Truth. None in my family use traps to guard anything. We believe that if you are clever enough to get past our vigilant selves, you have earned a stab at the prize… laying a hidden device that can maim and kill is just unsportsmanlike. However. This place is fabulous, how else do you defend something you wish to remain undisturbed over the ages? Take that floor for example… before we encountered the box maze. Open the door and nearly step out into a bottomless pit. It was fabulous. You could see across the “room” another set of doors, but between us and them was nothing but dark going down and down and down. Farmboy dropped a coin…. nothing was heard… Se’can poked a spear down into nothingness… but… step out onto the air and meet solid floor. Look down into a bottomless pit, but walk across a solid surface. Fabulous. If you did not possess someone in your party who was stalwart and faithful, you would have to build a way across or just give up and go home… Simply fabulous.

We are out of the box trap now, thanks to Hibi and his down to earth approach to breaking the wall behind us and back into the room between the box trap and the fake pit… a room populated with odd stone bowls and arcing colored fire that soar across the vaulted ceiling in random patterns. They are fabulous to watch, perhaps a little disconcerting, but still a light show of wonder. Their source in hidden, their destination unknown.. and silent… shooting across the dark ceiling putting on a display for the ages. What purpose they have is beyond me, and the Hammer who should know this stuff hasn’t a clue either, but it seems safe enough. I look forward to figuring out how to move deeper into this wonder again.

Oh! Oh! …and how about the jets of flame that went across the corridor… fabulously wide pressure plate… gently press down and whoosh! flame!…. I will be sporting a bit of a "sun"burn for a while, but, I am certain that my eyebrows will grow back given a little time. However. Soon I know I’m going to have to go back out under the sky for a while to center myself, the pressure of the walls and all that dirt above us builds inside my gut… but for now I’m holding it together.

I believe I will be taking point with Hibi and putting my own eyes to test instead of pulling up the rear. If we are going to get entrapped, I’m not going to walk in blithely behind the others keeping an eye on their backsides… that’s a job for Farmboy perhaps… but me… I want to know how these things tick… so to speak.

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Deeper into Darkness
** GM Update **

Our travelers descend deeper into this tomb, finding many new secrets, narrowly escaping the possibility of being sealed within forever.

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