Thursday, February 21, 2013

Noble's Gate

Soon after the Minstrel was convinced to construct theWaterdeep to Amphail road, several names became associated with the short Trade Way extension; one that would split off into two directions from Amphail.

The west road or Iron Road from Amphail leads onward to the Golden Fields, Bargewright Inn, Secomber, and points beyond; while the north Long Road were the Evermore Way was completed or farther north still to Longsaddle terminating at Mirabar.

Coined The Noble Road after the hamlet of Amphail was elevated to status of town and all who enter its walls from Waterdeep would pass through the Noble's Gate. Amphail, already known for its scarcity of real estate Noble's Gate was made into a shrine to the Pantheon who some say can be thanked for the prosperity Amphail enjoys- despite the Time of Troubles.

So that no deity is placed above another only a single characteristic from one of these seven incarnations are represented on the tiles paving the gate:

Community- is the bond that protects families, friends, towns and cities alike.
Fate- the fulfillment of life to its greatest degree and pursue all its mysteries.
Knowledge- to learn one must admit one is ignorant.  
Nobility- is the strength in family, and worth of one’s deeds.
Pride- is the product of praise, independent self-reflection, and fulfilling feeling of belonging.
Strength- is a multifaceted idea of perseverance, power, and vitality.
Travel- spreading of culture, and enrichment of the soul. 

Friday, February 15, 2013

An Evening Messenger

Tak Tak Tak

Piergeiorn awoke with a start. His palatial bedroom was cold with lively shadows in every corner; the fire in the hearth had died down to embers and needed to be remade. He looked around his dark quarters, all was familiar and undisturbed. He sat up and donned his evening robe to ward off the cold as he got to his feet remembering his dream before it escaped him.

Flying unfamiliar colors of white and bronze three ships named the Shining Sword, Golden Paladin, and Bronze Protector emerged from the mists of sleep; each toiled and smashed through the breakers as they bore a path through the Trackless Sea. Impossible grey waves hammered the hulls of each vessel while men raced to keep vital gear and rigging from being lost or by chance damaging the ship.

The night sky was clear and full of stars under which deafening surf accompanied by salty air overwhelmed the senses. Cutting through the din of the ocean a malevolent voice full of authority and the weight of magic commanded the sailors. The deep powerful voice was in the parlance of dragon kind and it swore untold pain and misery if the ships were not corrected in due coarse. It seemed an impossibility.

In his dream Piergeiron was one of these sailors desperately trying to appease the speaker before it turned its angry eyes upon his desperate form. Instinctively he reached for his gun and…

Tak Tak Tak

The sound once again roused him from his inner thoughts and he looked toward the origin of the sound. It was coming from the window.

Lighting a fine and ornate lantern, a gift from the church of Lathander, Piergerion sauntered to the window; a large glass-steel paladin-style windowpane overlooking the Castle Ward and found a disheveled single raven bearing a message.

Cold air rushed in and disturbed the once tranquil bedroom scattering papers and waking his guard dog Ramses who barked in protest. Piergerion retrieved the small message and read its words with growing alarm.  

Knock Knock Knock

“Sai Piergerion?” Baerom Thunderstaff dutifully appeared inquiring at the unusual activity at this late hour.

“A message from the Samular Seven my friend.” The Paladinson said with remorse, “a fleet from Luskan has been spotted heading south—our worst fears have come to pass.” 

Friday, February 8, 2013

Table of Four

Lord Pelindar Filmarya

In the shadow of the High Tower of Thalivar, the abandoned mage spire in the center of town, sat Lord Pelindar Filmarya’s at the Table. The Table was a converted and reinforced stone cottage that functioned as the seat of leadership in the northern town. Flanking the small structure are stables that were likewise reinforced and rehabilitated in to militia barracks and exercise grounds.

Lord Pelindar Filmarya listened to his captain of his Lances with growing interest and deep concern. The Lances of Leilon cavaliers of Tyr, The Just god, whose spirit has never faltered even after the Time of Troubles or the attack from the Island Kingdoms. Their bond aligned with Pelindar's own, the safety and prosperity of the hard working people of Leilon.

Many folk dismiss the small mining and fishing town because it does not have any port to speak of, but these are the opinions of the short sighted and individuals with narrow vision.

“These Waterhavians claim there is an armada of diverse vessels out to sea heading south; furthermore these travelers maintain that there is a pending attack on Waterdeep,” said Marquis Randoer.

Marquis is a captain in Leilon’s elite cavalry and gunslinger apprentice. He gained this prestigious post through strict discipline and the high expectations he places with his men. Despite the complaining from some of the lances that Marquis drives them to hard, the Lances of Leilon has lost remarkably few battles and suffered only minor injuries—before the attack last spring.

“Sir.” It was Thorvid Miles a remarkably agile individual for a man of his size; he served as scout and adviser to Lord Pelindar. “I have verified the traveler’s claim, moreover it seems the Waterhavians have taken to the skies to meet this threat head-on.”
Sword Mountains

“Are they fools?” came a question from the rear of The Table. It was Selim Abu-bin Sujah friend of Lord Pelindar and visitor from the South. “Four against what is likely a pirate fleet supported by Northmen Longships and Luskan warships? The impudence of Waterdeep nobility knows no bounds.” Sujah said with obvious distaste.

Selim Abu-bin Sujah was the best horseman anyone in Leilon had ever seen and was renowned in his home realm for victories against rival tribes. While his services here were appreciated, his real purpose in the North remained a mystery.

“They seemed capable enough,” said Marquis coming to the quick defense of the travelers. “Two of them bore guns,” he finished with pride.

“Nevertheless,” Lord Pelindar interrupted producing a quill and parchment. “We must send word to the Knights of the Firelance.”

After a moment of writing he continued, “Selim I need you to select the best horse in our ranks for Thorvid who will carry this message to Piergeiron.” He handed over the sealed missive and as he did dire ghostly moans tore through the evening silence like dull axe.

The four men filed out of The Table where they witnessed dozens of residents fleeing from The Orc’s Tusks taproom. When they arrived at the entrance of Manyclaws Alley the scene before them briefly shook their faith.  

Dancing in a rough ring, slaying everyone that wandered to close were nine lively corpses whose mouths hung open in eternal silent howls. Each wore rotting vestments of a purple hue reeking of disease and rot. In the center of their dance of death was a dark little girl covered in strange runes who was pointing at each person trying to escape. The girl seemed to hold sway over the undead. 

“To arms!”  Lord Pelindar exclaimed. Then there was the sound of swords being freed from the confines of their scabbards. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Winter Voices

Madelan existed outside many social groups, associations, and institutions in the city of Neverwinter; a circumstance that has fueled her resolve and has reason to purpose. As a young adult Madelan was accepted as an initiate at Cloak Tower College because of her family connections, though while attending she was routinely ostracized by her peers because of differing her religious beliefs.

Her family presently exercised the traditions of Neverwinter aristocratic business but many times lacked the surplus of funds to fully realize any significant climb in social class. This led to Madelan’s family becoming financially dependent on the wealthier branch of the family; kin who have since returned home.

Madelan was born from a half-elf mother of whose side of the family possesses the bulk of the family’s wealth, a miserly aunt who has outlived thirty husbands is said of have joined other Elves in returning to their Homeland; and a human father, a noble from Waterdeep who lived for the night life and the thrill of ambition but failed at every business venture he entered into.

In many ways Madelan would never be truly accepted as one of the elite persons of the city, an outsider. Even their rented villa was just outside the prim streets and towers of Neverwinter night life, where her family truly lived.

One morning Madelan, in the process of walking home after a sixteen-hour examination at the Cloak Tower, was immersed in a feeling she never until now remembered experiencing before. The sensation was like having an icy bucket of sea water splashed across her body, thick and heavy, burning with icy intensity. The feeling left her terrified—was she injured? A quick assessment told her no but only now remember what this terrifying feeling portended: Dragons.

Fog rippled up the streets filling every shadow and intersection with its cold breath. A dragon roar followed the fog, but it was not a simple roar in frustration or victory. This was a calling.

In college they said ‘Madelan picked up languages on accident,’ but what made her unique she could hear and understand languages within languages. Inferences, undertones, and emotions communicated beneath the range of hearing to everyone but herself.

Goose flesh rose on her arms as the temperature surrounding the elven lass noticeably dropped as the city was once again filled with the sound of a dragon roar- the dragon beckoned. She tried to listen for more but all at once two bestial white dragons thrust up from the city rift and into the sky where they blended with the winter white sky.

Friday, February 1, 2013

The Last Stand

Sai Riverwind stood silently and thoughtfully while reminiscing at the pairs of paintings hanging in the central hall, called the Blue hall because of the colors used in the fabrics, frames, and flora of this- his favorite area of the Manor. In the center of the hall stood a marble fountain statue of a Zalantar tree placed artfully in the middle. In these paintings were the elder twins of Riverwind generations past, he was Camaron the IV.
For some time Caramon wanted to move the Riverwind family to Neverwinter and leave the administration of Tundertree to the Union; but there were those reclusive members who always balked at the idea, but the events of the past year has given Caramon' argument new merit and after the visit from the four Samular Heirs- Caramon was certain that this time next year he and his family would be living in Neverwinter.

“Sai Caramon!” Came an excited voice, it was Peregrine quickly making his way down the Blue hall toward the fountain where Caramon stood. What could be so important at this late hour? 

“Strange sounds from the east, its sounds like insects.” The ranger said stopping at once before the family elder, his eyes alert and focused.

“You herd this yourself?” Caramon asked.

“Yes it was sounded as if…”

His description trailed off as movement around them caught their attention. Between each pair of paintings sat stone pots that looked like women holding up their contents: medium sized trees with thick, wide blue leaves. The trees, they could see, were growing at an alarming rate.

Behind them the fountain spat and stopped while a foul reek wafted from the stagnant water, where only moments ago the water was clear, flowing, and sweet. Caramon at once produced a kerchief and raised it to his face and when he did he at once saw the terror in Peregrine’s eyes.

Without warning Peregrine sprinted the rest of the way down the hall away from Caramon in an insane dash. Caramon called out, but if he was answered it was cut off by the calamitous din of others back the way Peregrine came from.

Moments later Caramon stood in the main door way that overlooked the Manor’s meticulously groomed yards, the river, as well as Thundertree. Several men assembled next to him as he quietly surveyed the formerly quite evening before him. Some people he could see were sick and retching while others waved at the air in a vain attempt to swat away the insects that were growing thicker with each passing moment. And to his dismay the plant growth was everywhere, which only confirmed his suspicion.

“Halden, Borak, Elianna,” Caramon began. “We are under siege. Gather your resources and any able bodied axe-wielder, blacksmith, or bowman and bring them to the Manor to make a last stand.”

“From what?”