A Fallen Light, A New Hope

Kalebs Reports
Scribbled on the back of an official report

6th 1st day, Kythorn, 1394

I am a little surprised they’re still gone to be honest, I thought they’d have been back by now.

We are supposed leave for the lake house soon, but the Festival of Obad-Hai is starting soon also, I wonder if they’d be interested in sticking around to go to that is something they’d be interested in, but I also hear that Angdale’s Traveling Circus is coming, which is pretty exciting, I hear they have all sorts of animals.

Well regardless, I also have exciting news for everyone… It seems ever since we entered that cave more magical beings have been appearing, and some of the Fey have been returning to the areas! I have so many places I want to go, I hear Fort Baemore and Baecrest are holding some event in honour of the magical beings, sorcerers and wizards are attending to!

Well, either way; it appears that we can travel to the Lake House right away, or perhaps attend the festival here and make our way to Baecrest, I should probably ask everyone what they want to do.

Kaleb

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Stray Thoughts and Schematics (8)
A shift in heart

6th first day of Kythorn

Things have taken…a terrible turn. I made horrible mistake and a woman is dead. Dead with no hope of being brought back. We thought the cleric could help but…

It all started when we came to Crestwood to find some witch to heal Aaron’s injuries. She did as we asked but she wanted us to ride Crestwood of its undead in return. We stumbled upon less of an adventure and more of a conspiracy. The mayor, the local smith, and a black hearted shrew known as Balta were responsible for the ruling families violent deaths and unleashed a curse upon the land as a result. Balta and I spoke and I (the next three lines have been crossed out and are unreadable.

An innocent woman named Kessla died because of what I did. I let her live, and she killed that poor woman. Next time, I won’t pull the knife away.

It seems like every time I try to do the right thing I make some fatal mistake. Why do I even try anymore?

The other two are still alive and it enrages me. What did they and that harlot care for the moral high ground, they killed an entire family for petty pride and power and who knows how many others through this curse. Yet for some reason we must rise above their level. I am starting to suspect most of the world cares little about being the better man. Perhaps I should do the same.

We ventured into the mire after killing Balta and have encountered some horrendous creatures. Along with an elf archer of sorts. I have not paid her much mind, I’ve been otherwise occupied. I found a rather efficient dagger, Aaron seems to dislike it but what does it matter that it’s of Drow make? It cuts through flesh as well if not better than any other dagger and that’s all that really matters. I shall keep it concealed just in case though.

We are currently in an old temple a group of refugees and a cleric have taken shelter in. She intends for us the exercise the home of the slaughtered family to end the curse. Personally I would prefer to throw the mayor and his remaining accomplice to the undead but my friends disagree. Instead we sit in the chapel for the night to defend it incase any undead should find their way to it, and head out at first light for the Ravencrest estate.

I only hope the worst is behind us.

(There are no sketches or designs on this page unlike previous entries, but several lines have been crossed out throughout the passage including an entire paragraph at the bottom)

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Trappers Tales IV
6th 1st day, Kythorn - Enemies and Friends

6th 1st day, Kythorn

I shouldn’t have let her talk me into it, but at least we came out of it alright.
With a handy arena nearby, Iona couldn’t resist the urge to risk our lives against goblins. Fortunately, we made a deal with a nearby man who would protect us a little, in exchange for a significant portion of our rewards. I think it saved Aarons life. At least we still made a little coin.

From there, we wandered off into the woods, looking for a witch. We had been told she’d be able to fix the injury Aaron got from the plants a while back. I feel like she found us, but we went in and answered her request regardless, where we had to go deal with an undead problem in a town (of course).

On arriving in the town, we were given a few random tasks, such as retrieve the hide of a werewolf, and collect a particular flower, but there was clearly a larger problem, something smelt as rotten as the undead, and we’d had our weapons taken, we weren’t allowed to explore the town on our own, and were being shown around by the inn keeper.

However, the alchemist was clearly wanting to tell us the problem, but didn’t like our escort.
Aaron and I tried to make our way out of the town hall towards her, while Iona distracted our guide with cooking. Despite the driving rain, it went poorly, and we were discovered. I ushered Aaron on, and confronted our pursuer, the blacksmith. Fortunately, he believed my lies about being afraid of a wolf. He thought I’m a coward for some reason, so easily believed it.

It worked, and Aaron made it to the alchemist (I feel like he just has a nose for alchemists, and can sniff them out anywhere), and got the full story. The mayor, the blacksmith and our guide were all cursed, and the cause of the undead plague.

As he was telling the story, though, Iona rushed in, and told us we had to pack up and go. She’d gotten into an altercation with the innkeeper, knives were pulled and we had to go. Something got Aarons neck up at this, and he took off. It was all I could do to keep up with him, as he made his way back to the alchemists, but we were still too late. The innkeeper had killed her, but was quickly repaid in kind by Aaron. It was rather disgusting.

We rapidly gathered our equipment, using the key Iona lifted from the innkeepers body, and fled the town before anything more could happen. We didn’t want to get into trouble with the rest of the town, so we walked out into the swamp. The hem of my robe had become soaked before we’d taken more than a few steps, but the others still thought it made me look “wizardly”, so it is what it is.

Aaron had become fixated on a temple supposedly in the swamp, hoping that someone there would be able to revive the alchemist. He’d become attached to her rapidly, probably bonding over alchemy. He did decide that we’d best break off down a short path, to try and find the flower he’d been asked to retrieve. If nothing else, he said, he could give it to the alchemist on reviving her.

However, we hadn’t reckoned on the wisdom of the werewolves. It was a trap, with the flower laid in the middle of the glade. It didn’t occur to me until after, and I haven’t and probably wont tell Aaron, but I’m now wondering if the alchemist was in league with the werewolf.

An unexpected ally appeared, though. An attractive, young looking woman, speaking gibberish, came out of the woods, firing arrows at the beast. After the battle we spoke to her, and she decided to help us for a little. An elf, which is why I couldn’t understand her, a few hundred years old. Goes by the name Analissa. She seems cold, and a little angry, but she’s helping, so I’ll take it.

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Catalog of a Cartographer IV
Personal Log 4

Although I cannot say for sure, I am starting to believe my friends are all slowly going insane. In their defense however, the world itself is much bigger and stranger than we ever had imagined. Also, if another cartographer ever has the misfortune of meeting the witch Bagoda, know that maps will do little good as the woods themselves change to suit her whims.

This latest “adventure” starting because Iona, Arseni, Aaron, and myself had too much free time before our larger friend group was going on its next expedition. We decided to check out a cave we had seen earlier and the arena we had heard rumors about. The cave was full of Ettercaps and we decided to avoid it entirely as they are rather beastly creatures. On the way to the arena I had a bit of an awkward situation with one of the locals but Iona, with her serpent’s tongue, ensured that we got away with minimal fuss. Although I had little interest in fighting in the arena, Iona and Aaron were quite eager and Iona was able to manipulate Arseni into going in so I had little choice but to follow them. We, without a massive amount of difficulty, killed the goblins in the arena. Most interestingly however, my bow seems to have some sort of magical properties; it fired a massively powerful shot that bowled over one of the goblins a good 20ft. I thought my father made it, but I do not think he has any sort of magical aptitude.

Aaron also had some sort of magical illness that required great skill to fix, so we sought out the witch mentioned above. In return for helping him, she wanted us to deal with the undead problem in the nearby town. The townsfolk, although understandably wary of armed strangers, seem quite friendly. Their bowyer has a fascinating design for a small handheld repeating crossbow. It is very expensive, but I might be able to convince him to sell me the plans so I can get Iona to make it for me. The others are out doing a bit of skulduggery while I take a look at the local library. I have found little of interest, hence my finally making an entry here. I do hope they do nothing rash out there, I would hate to have any more surprises.

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An Alchemist's Tale IV
I can’t believe she would be so.. why would she. does she not understand the repercussions of her actions?? She.. Why do i have to care so much for her that even when she makes a mistake that cost someone else their life.. two woman their lives… yet I feel nothing but love for her. this must be what true friendship is.

Iona, My good friend. I write this as I do not want to say it. You act to much on impulses. I care for you deeply but I am going to have to teach you that you can’t just be so aggressive when other lives are at stake
.
We Must find the priestess.. I must try to right the wrongs that were done this day.. I must do everything in my power to try and bring back Kessla she deserved better and I could see her helping me and grandmother out so much. I can only hope, and pray to the gods that have forsaken us that she will have the power to save her.

I must press on either way, Bagoda has given me a mission and if i intend to keep myself alive i better continue no matter what happens to this town, the risen must be stopped.

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Stray Thoughts and Schematics (7)
The Arena

(A new sketch of the spherical object has been made with more detail and small notes about possible incendiary components)

Words can not describe how glorious this day has been. I feel as though my companions tend to look at my inventive habits and forget the sort of skills growing up in a tavern can yield. I certainly reminded them of that today.

Poor Tavion found himself with an unwanted admirer, a beast of a woman named Berta. Thankfully he slipped back into his room and locked himself in somehow. Not so thankfully, I had to get him out trouble for it right after waking up the next morning. She was a fairly well…simple woman. I convinced her a note he wrote to me asking to keep her away was Elven poetry he wrote for her.

Rather than a thank you I was given a lecture about not speaking elvish. What in the material plane would I need to learn elvish for? To talk to all of the elf folk in Baemore? Besides the point, I’ve roped my dear companion into joining my little excursion back to the caves when we get home. Perhaps I should invite one more person, Kaleb may try to tell Aaron what we’re up to, and Kara seems quite sullen and this particular type of adventure might only exacerbate it. Sells doesn’t seem to be very fond of all the adventuring either. Not at all really. Even when it’s just me doing it…

Enough of that! I’m sure he and I can handle it. Hopefully this will bring a measure of peace to Aaron and Estelle. I know how (whatever was written here is scratched out). But that’s really not my business to write about.

Oh this is getting dour, I should be excited! We made a killing in the arena. We could have made more, but we made a deal with an enchanted for magical protection. It kept Aaron alive so I suppose I can’t complain. He needs to be more careful, serious injury is becoming far too common for him.

Arseni’s magic is becoming more and more profound it seems. He went invisible in the middle of the fight! And didn’t even know how! Were I more mystically inclined I might try to study this, but I’m afraid my fascination will have to stay objective. Tavion seems to be quite taken with the mystical lately I’ve noticed. Perhaps he could take up alchemy.

I managed to kill two, not as impressive as the count for the others, but I did land the final blow on their leader! It was such a rush of sliding my blade into that vapid beast and hearing the crowd cheer. We must do this again!

I have a good feeling about this adventure. For me and my friends, here’s to wherever fate brings us together next!

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Trappers Tales III
1st 1st Day, Kythorn - Down Time

1st 1st Day, Kythorn

Well, I guess notifying the guard captain where we’re going was both helpful, and not.
She arrived too late to help in the fight, and to save Agron, but at least she was able to escort us home without issue.
I spent the ride mostly silently. We’d let down Kara, and the fact that we had to save them was our fault anyway. Zia did suggest that I don’t let the rest of the family see my new robe, though, as it would just start questions. Probably a good idea.

When we returned home things were already starting to return to normal. Mr Buckman was already able to walk, for example. The strangest thing was the acknowledgement we received when we got back. I felt awkward and slipped away as soon as I was able.
I haven’t been the only person slipping away, though. At the end of the funeral for her father, Kara had disappeared. I went looking for her, but was unsuccessful. On the bright side, I did run into Vesta. She was out shopping, and we had a nice little chat. Every cloud has a silver lining, I guess.
Kara turned up the next day anyway. When I saw Ander and Kaleb on their patrol earlier in the day Ander said she’d be alright, and he was correct. She did have some new cuts when I saw her, but thought it diplomatic not to mention them.
Shortly later, I ran into Vesta again. I always feel so awkward talking to her. I just have no words, so my tongue seems to do its own thing, and I don’t know why. It’s still always nice, though. I generally just let her talk and chip in when my mind decides it’s time to come up with something.

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Stray Thoughts and Schematics (4-6)
Return to Baemore

Stray thoughts and Schematics (4-6)

4th Second Day of Mirtul

It’s over. We killed him and we brought everyone back. Well, almost everyone. Kara’s father did not make it, and I fear how it will affect her. Losing your parents is never easy, I understand that well, but even I had my grandparents to take care of me after. I suppose we’ll have to be there for her.

Speaking of my grandparents, they’re going to be alright I think. Granny is recovering, and Grandpa can walk again. Words can’t even begin to say how happy I am to have them both still here. I can’t lose anyone else. Grandpa seems to be keeping an extra close eye on me after everything that’s happened, and I can’t bring myself to mind it. I’m simply content with still having them here. At least he’s up and walking again.

Everyone else’s families seem to be recovering well. Estelle is in recovery with Granny, I had better make sure Aaron doesn’t over work himself in her a sense. Lander and Zia are fine, young and adventurous as ever. I am eternally grateful we got there soon enough for Silese to be spared any additional pain. She was exhausted, but well over all.

I feel so guilty having dragged her into this. I’ll make it up to her, take her out to nicest dinner I can. I just want her to know how sorry I am.

Agron’s funeral is in two days. I imagine it’ll be a large event considering he was the former guard captain. I just hope we can be there for Kara like she needs in the coming days.

4th Second Day of Mirtul

It appears the mayor’s praise of us has spread around town. Mara Brightwood approached me today. She said I might like to learn a bit more about weaponry in “my line of work”. It eventually came around to her offering me a job. It was a difficult decision, but I accepted in the end. My apprenticeship with Orel has given me a lot, but I am afraid there’s little else I can learn there. Plus, Mara’s shop will be more organized with more negotiable work hours.

I’ll still go an visit him of course, and he’ll always gens dear friend, but I just won’t be his employee I suppose.

Things are changing more and more each day it seems.

9th Second day of Mirtul

It’s been awhile since I wrote so much has happened.

We finally saw Kara leave the fortress her home has become. She’s so downtrodden and unlike healed, but at least we were able to keep her company. I did my best to comfort her after the funeral along with some of the others. I think she appreciated the gesture but I’m unsure how the future looks for her.

I didn’t feel like being alone after that, so I finally took Silese to that fancy dinner I promised. I brought her to the restaurant Ravencrest owns. It was probably the first time I’ve felt genuinely relaxed since this whole mess blew up in our faces. We almost stayed until the restaurant closed laughing and just talking. It felt good to be alone with her again. That beautiful smile has always been my greatest weakness.

There’s some rumors of strange happenings in town. Maybe we can see if another adventure will perk Kara up. I doubt it will be that easy, but it doesn’t hurt to have hope. I need to go help grandpa set up for the celebration later. He asked me to stay in and help with the preparations. I just couldn’t say know after everything we’ve been through recently.

Oh in all the excitement of what’s been going on, I think I neglected my newest “idea”…oh well I’ll not it down later. I need to get busy.

(Below is an unfinished sketch of something that is not yet identifiable, but seems to be spherical in shape and a note “figure out trigger mechanism” is scrawled hastily next to it.)

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an Alchemist's Tale III

We finally got them all back, well almost all of them… Kara’s father didn’t make it, we were to slow… I tried to make it in time… and I feel horrible for being selfish with worrying about my own grandmother when her father lied there half… I don’t even want to think of it.

Despite the horror we did manage to grab a few items we could use if something like this happens in the future, a new sword some wizard robes a potion, but none of that seemed to matter with the tragedy in front of us.

We all took a week to recover although i still don’t feel like i am at 100% I think those mushrooms infected me I am going to have to ask grandmother what she thinks it is. Kaleb did get the cabin for all of us to take a much needed vacation tho which is super awesome! I am going to be sure i repay him with dinner sometime.. maybe at Ravencrest’s yeah! I am sure Grandmother will want the extra help anyway!

I spent some time with the owl this week… I think he trusts me and after what it did for Iona i am sure I trust him. But he needs a name. a name worthy of his valor and bravery. I know! I will call you Hero, because I know we will be heroes someday… and I want a reminder of that. these past 2 weeks… have made me feel so alive! I love alchemy and i want to continue doing it… but I want to do more now… and with Hero by my side, and this amazing long sword in my sheath I know i can do something… I will find my calling out there and use my skills to their advantages…. I will find a way!

I have also found myself wishing I had inherited that druids power lately.. Druids are one with nature… and I really think that having those powers would help me a lot.. from what i remember reading druids have healing properties and can command plants in some ways.. and work with animals… all stuff I have always wanted to do since i was younger… that’s why i started following grandmother in alchemy because its as close to magic as i can get. maybe i should talk to the Benninger society… maybe they will know if i can awaken this power..

at any rate… maybe one day.. but for now I will focus on what i do have, my sword, my alchemy and my Hero.

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Stray Thoughts and Schematics (3)
What has been lost

3rd 2nd Day, Mirtul

They took everyone. My grandmother, my Selise…my friend’s loves ones. They took them, and crippled grandfather. How will he be able to live like that? He’s always loved the outdoors, and practically lives for his hunting trips. And Grandmother…how will we go on without her? They took everything from me. What do I have to live for now?

It’s like mother and father all over again. Taken away from me in the name of some bastard gods I don’t care about. Is it fate I have to lose everyone I love? I was supposed to be moving one, starting my life with Selise, and helping grandmother and grandfather retire…

They ruined everything!

(the entry contains several small dots of fade and crinkling in the paper that resemble dried wet spots)

(The ink is pressed in heavy and thick lettering on the next entry as if the pen were pressed to hard on the paper)

There is no more time to cry for them. I have to find grandmother, Selise, Zia, Lander, Estelle…all of our family that were taken. I will not let them get away with this, and I will die trying if I must to get back what they’ve taken. I refuse to sit back and play the hurt child. That twisted elf and his cult will pay dearly for this, I promise that much.

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