A Fallen Light, A New Hope

Trapper's Tales XLIII
Dark Paths

Well, this probably isn’t good.

That lich we ran into in the southern Crestwood is back in our lives. According to the Duke she wants to take over the island and set up her own kingdom, and the most efficient way for her to do this is by using undead, so if we’re not careful our homes will be overrun by undead, vampires, ancient deal making magic users and the gods who abandoned us only know what else.

It’s apparently why Roy is getting stalked by the… thing. She apparently wants him as a protector, having proven his worth by defeating it previously.
However, it’s not the only thing she’s after. Apparently as an unaligned magic user, I’m worth something to her as an apprentice. I guess she doesn’t know that I can’t really control it very well.

Still, maybe there’ll be something good we can make from this. If we can convince her to make her island home elsewhere, on a little unpopulated island, maybe? she’ll be happy enough, and I may be able to learn something along the way.
I’m not so sure that Roy will be able to benefit as much from being stalked by her thing, though.

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A Blacksmith's Workings XXXIII
Name

A lich, the source of the curse I have. I have suspected it was her from when we first met. The curse that holds me and binds me to the revanant She is the source. It also appears that Arseni is tied to Lexana as well. She seeks us both, a champion and an apprentice.

But what can be done about that monster. The last time I met her she had me immobilized. All I could muster was to flee. I don’t know if I have the power to face something like that.

It appears our attention now shifts to the Black. Retaking our home is the most important.

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The Lost One's Tome V
Farewell

Dear Arseni,

I am unsure what exactly compelled me to write this, but I felt like it was necessary.  I was a stranger and an outsider and you sheltered me without any hesitation or doubt.  Few could claim to be so kind and noble.  You and your friends saved my life. You save many lives, and aren’t thanked nearly enough flr it from what I’ve seen.  So thank you.  For everything. 

Forgive me, but I am afraid I told a small lie before.  Whether we survive our assault on the Black or not.  I will not be returning to the Feywilds.  My family knows, and they have accepted it.   If I live I intend to stay with the wood elves for a time, to study and train in hopes of learning more about this gift, and to help in their efforts to rebuild in anyway I can.  I think the time for old predjiduces has long passed, don’t you? 

Whether I live to do that or not, there is one thing I want you to know.  Your group inspired me, but mostly, you did.  You were afraid and you were hesitant, just like me.  I am still afraid, but I will not let it stop me.  It never stopped you.  You showed courage and kindness like I have never seen, and even when you faltered remained a good man. 

You are a good man Arseni.  For all that you doubt, know that is the one thing you never need to.

Farewell,
Solen’Ia A’Darine

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A Blacksmith's Workings XXX
Again

This city is forever burned into my mind. It’s beauty and wonder, there is no city like this back home. But those aren’t the things that latch tightly to my mind.

It’s you.

This city was part of the first adventure with you. I invited you along because we needed help with the forest. To your surprise we found a forest unlike any you have experienced before. We seemed so innocent back then. I was keeping an eye on Mireya for Anzo’s sake. And you wanted to keep an eye on me. I wonder what would have happened if I said no to you joining us on that trip. You wouldn’t have crossed paths with Bagoda and maybe you would still be here. I would be able to return home and see you Rowan, but without all our adventures would it be the face I grew to love.

I wish I could ask you for advice. What would have thought of the Bone Mason’s deal? Would you have accepted it? What would make of Aaron’s new sword or the chance at dealing with Bagoda?

I haven’t thought about what happens next too much, I’m struggling to leave you behind.

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A Blacksmith's Workings XXIX
Deal

Twelve Lives. For assistance in helping the elves, twelve lives is nothing. A deal that seems to favor us. We had to kill the drow in the city as the second part of this deal, but that seemed inevitable given our end goal of driving them out. Twelve Lives. It seems unfortunate that Arseni is placed with the task of the killing. He seems less then thrilled by that fact.

The Bone Mason and the City of the Damned. A world and creature that emit death to all who approach, but the power he holds is what we desire. Magic that can fight The Black outside the dealmakers and their rules.

The toad pixies were a surprise. Selfish little creatures, only after the enjoyment of torturing others. The wishes they can grant do nothing to help others. Curious creatures though.

Looking back at it its not just the lives of others we have to offer up. The souls are what the Bone Mason is truly after. We would be damning twelve souls to an eternity of suffering. Makes me feel for Arseni, he is the one that has to do the act. If only there was something I could do to help him with this problem, but its only twelve more

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Trapper's Tales XLII
3rd 2nd day, Ches - This deal keeps getting worse all the time

3rd 2nd day, Ches
Well, this went poorly. I’m assuming it’s because of my hesitation and reluctance.
I just wish we’d stop walking into these situations that damn us, time after time.

We were told that if we went and saw the Bone Mason (which I already assumed was going to be a bad idea, just based on his name) he would be willing to do a deal which would see him help us free Dolan’esca. In return, for a year we had to provide one soul to him and condemn it to eternal suffering.

In a worrying trend of events, most people seemed rather on board with this. I was the only dissenting voice. However, it was an all or nothing agreement, either we all agreed or the bargain wasn’t struck. Using the idea of spread blame I wouldn’t be culpable, so in the end I agreed, telling myself it was to not hold back the others.

However, when we’d all agreed, I was the only one marked. A tattoo looking thing is etched into my arm, and I can remove a small dagger from it. I’m to plunge it into the still-living heart of whoever I am to condemn.

I’m not especially happy about it.
But I think, a little of me was hoping we’d have some left over power when the deal was done. Maybe, just maybe, it will remain when my mark is removed, a little something to help us forward. Even the gods who have forsaken us know we need it.

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An Alchemist's Tale XLII

Well, Maybe I was to hasteful like always, Maybe we should have looked for another way… I thought we would all share the burden, I.. I yet again failed when it comes to things i don’t actually understand… And now Arseni has to deal with the consequences of my actions, instead of looking for another way I pushed them that it wouldn’t be that bad… there must have been another way, the fey elves maybe? maybe the black had something had we gone and defeated him first? who knows… What i do know is that I need to end all of this, I need to get that sword to help me control my powers, and I need to end this horrible situation that everyone I care about is living in… and once we clear everything and it all calms down, I need to step away… step away and work on myself, or I think the elves will gladly take me in as a student after i helped liberate their home… at least I can only hope they do…

In the end tho, nothing can remove the mistakes I have made… I just hope i can learn from them…

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The Lost One's Tome IV
Bargains and Promises

1st 3rd day, The Melting

I should have said no. I should have been stronger and a lot of other things. Those awful pixies were right. I am pathetic. My own timidity has damned twelve souls and possibly a thirteenth in a good man who had far more courage than I did.

I am so sorry Arseni. If I could relieve your burden I would, but there’s no undoing the past or it’s sins. Feeling sorry for myself when someone else is suffering much worse would be the most pathetic thing I’ve done yet.

Instead I make a promise. I will become stronger, and learn to face my weakness. As hesistant as I am I will not leave just yet. Not until this curse is dealt with. It will not be easy. This group seems to attract awful attention, and it’s strongest will appears to be it’s greatest fool.

But I have no other choice. I promise Arseni, I will repay this wrong, and I will protect you. I will not let your soul be the one that suffers for this.

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An Alchemist's Tales XLI

I feel like I keep repeating everything in these journals, I keep making the same points and show little to no growth… Like yesterday’s battle I felt like I was helping, and maybe I did make it easier… but at what cost? i don’t know, no 1 does. because I can’t remember. I am realising what this woman thing really does. The Duke helped me realise it, honestly a memory here or there doesn’t seem like much, but it ads up, and I am noticing what it is doing to my friends… I am to blame… and I am the only one that can stop it. she has no power over me if i just say NO. she has all the cards. and she has people that I want. but I can’t lose myself, that’s not what mother would have wanted, and it’s not fair to everyone else that is still alive and here… I keep forgetting, that i do have family that rely on me… I have 3 cousins that lost both their parents, just like I did… And Estelle has been taking care of all of us for so long. They are not longer cousins, they are brothers and sisters. they mean everything to me… and to be honest I have been the worst brother… It’s time we finish this, It’s time we end this adventure.

But first, two task must be complete. we must free the elves from the drow, we need them
on our side. and the black must die, or at least leave this area. I want my home to be at peace before i can return. and resume the life I had, learning my trade, and running the shop while grandmother acts as mayor… That is what I want. I might have to ask the elves fora favor after we clear out their city… I hope they won’t mind having a human stay with them for a while once this is all over with…

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A Blacksmith's Workings XXVIII
Hazy

We headed north to the Arena, we went in search for Sebastian and Marcella. Kara may also be in the Arena, under the Black’s control. We snuck into the Arena and went in search for the targets. We found came across some nobles who mentioned that an arena fight would happen involving an arena fighter and apprentice. We continued our search and found Kara with a necklace that was controlling her. Kara placed another necklace around Marcella’s neck. The fight was moved to the arena where we learned we had to beat Kara. We had to choose to save either Kara or Mercella, and the other would die. The fight turned south when Mireya went down and Aaron made a deal with Bagoda to help our odds. The fight went our way. We were able to overcome Kara and beat her down and save her from the grasp of the Black. As Kara fell unconscious, Marcella’s necklace tightened and took her life. I told Mireya to leave Marcella and to find Sebastian. I followed her out of the Arena with Marcella’s now lifeless body. We borrowed a carriage from the Black and headed back towards Baecrest. I learned of the deal with Bagoda. Upon reaching Baecrest we stopped by our home. We broke the bad news to Mireya’s family and the others. I went to the the Duke’s to have him dispose of the carriage.- I requested his help with Marcella, he said he could not help me.- After talking to the Duke we separated and went our own way home. Arseni and I went to the pub to drink away our problems. I awoke the next day feeling good but with a slight headache.

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