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Zaghoul's No-Reload Asylum."75 Roll/ No Resurrection/ SCS/ RP'ed Challenge" runs:



  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited May 1
    Snipe-Life in CK. A kobold amongst the big peoples

    I feel alone in a world of giants.

    The sun is just rising and I am still up.

    My tail is still a little sore where the big dumb dwarf Reevor grabbed it and slung me around in a circle a few nights ago, just for not killing the rats in the shed as I was supposed to have as one of my chores. It was not the first time but it was the last. This time when he threw me against a wall about 25 feet away I had landed on my feet and had my crossbow cocked, aimed, and ready to fire at him. One of the watchers was nearby and did nothing to stop Reevor but grabbed my shoulder to stop me from putting a poisoned bolt through the dwarf's eyes. I think even the watcher was startled as he saw the look on my face, that of one backed into a corner and ready to fight his way out or die trying. It was probably for the best that he did, as the justice from Ulraunt would have been swift and severe. It was from him that I had developed a healthy (for me) fear and distrust of mages. With a few words I could be killed by them. Even Gorion worried me (when he was mad) a little from the few times I had been caught sneaking around where I should not have been, or setting little harmless (mostly) traps for a few of the monks.
    I have spent most of my time practicing with my crossbow, or with my spiked club. I am one of the best shots in the keep now. I spend time as well with the priest that operates the apothecary in the keep. It was from him that I learned how to mix and develop poisons to coat my bolts or the spike in my club. Not that he taught that but its is what I eventually learned how to do. I always keep a little cauldron like pot of it with me. I also spend a good deal of time reading books of different sorts. I have learned as much as I can about my race. Much of it is tainted from a human or demi-human point of view of course, but never the less, I have gained some insight and even picked up and learned a few phrases of the kobold language, written down by one of the elven scholars, Camryn. He was actually fairly nice to me and helped me learn to read. Yipyak the big folk called it, a language that sounds to them like little dogs barking. I picked up a smattering of goblin to, well, I could recognize it if I heard it anyway.

    For the most part, the company I keep is the solitude I wrap around me like a blanket at night, as I wander the recesses of the keep. I am the only one of my kind ever to have graced the grounds of the library fortress of Candlekeep. I was brought here as a young hatchling and raised by the human Gorion, my foster father. When I ask about my past he never gives me much information. He always tells me that mother died not long after I emerged from my egg. He says he was a friend of hers for many seasons. Of my father he never says a word. By nature I am both curious and suspicious, and as I grew older his story grew ever more doubtful, but it is the only story I know.
    Although generally accepted by most here I am ever aware of the stares and hushed voices of others when I walk by.
    I know that I am different, I only have to look into their eyes to see that. From my sensitive tail that aids in my superb balance to the fine hair-like scales that cover my body. At night I can see the red of my eyes from my heat sensitive vision glowing back at me in their eyes, burning like coals in the night.

    It is at night that I feel most comfortable as the sunlight is harsh to my own kind.
    I often watch the moon and stars over the sea.

    I can't help but think that there might be something looking back at me from the skies or from the under the sea. Just a strange feeling sometimes I get.

    My own kind... I have only seen pictures, read and heard the stories of the watchers and monks concerning my kind.
    They are always told as if my people are no more than vicious rodents, fit only to be wiped out. Just let them try. I am one that will survive no matter what. One day I will leave this place and seek them out. I do not know what or who I might find but I want to meet them regardless. Perhaps they will accept me or perhaps not, if they smell the scent of the big folk on me at first.
    These big folk are a strange kind, some acting as if they accept me but often mean at the same time. And they call my people mean, pfeh!

    I do my best to abide by the laws of CK, just to be safe. To me though, they are not my laws, but big big peoples laws (BPL). I have developed my own codes and rules, my own internal compass, and it does not include those made by them. I feel comfortable with a routine. I do value loyalty and friendship, but as to the possessions of others its 'finder's keepers, losers weepers'. Same goes for me so I only have myself to blame if I lose something.
    What else can one do in a land of giants, a land where they lay claim to just about everything and every place. That is just not right in my eyes. They make laws to suit them without regard to my opinions. For that matter I am for the most part not even considered as having a view.

    I did make friends with a couple of humans, Imoen, who fancies herself a great adventurer, and Alec, who was training to be a priest of Oghma, the god of knowledge. Not my god though.
    Oh, and Deder, a halfling of about my size. He taught me some of his 'skills' in sneaking. He was one of the very few that never joked with me about my height, or the peculiar scent I am always accused of smelling like (some have called me 'lil wet dog') in this home of giants. When I leave this place I will look to them for possible friends.


    Gorion has just told me we are leaving CK soon.

    He gave me a little money to outfit myself with new equipment from Winthrop, the inn/storekeep. I decided to spend some time visiting a few of the keep' inhabitants one last time, a few to say goodbye to, a few to see if they 'left anything laying around that they did not want anymore'.
    Camryn the scribe gifted me with a special bag to take with me on my travels. He talked of an old love of his named Tamah, a woman from before my time there, that he still messed and wrote letters to. He did not know where she was so just put hid them in the spine of the many books he copied in the hopes that one day she would find them.

    That fool dwarf Reevor, in one last attempt to get back at me, ordered me to clean those rats out finally. he had a funny look on his face as I entered the barn. The derned rats attacked me.

    They must have been rabid as rats just did not do that. I know he knew, the dumb dwarf.
    I was also attacked twice more, by human men that had somehow gained entrance to CK. They wanted me dead they said, and would get a reward. This was the first time I had ever killed a man.

    Then again:


    When I finished my frightful round of the keep I headed for Gorion at the steps of the library doors. I was most definitely ready to leave what had become a deathtrap for me. To tell the truth, I had had enough of being cooped up in what now felt like the small confines of the keep with the big people. We left, for where, he would not say. He did say that if we ever became separated that I should head for the Friendly Arm Inn and meet some friends of his.

    Time to leave.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 23
    Snipe the kobold-exploring Beregost and Nashkel area. Death of a friend.

    Well, we made it to Beregost. I did the best I could at talking with folks to find out what things were going on in the area. Most were a bit startled to see me. It's probably a wonder I was not attacked straight away. I think when they they hear me speaking their language they are surprised. I still see kids running away and peaking at me from around the corner of a building. To be expected I guess. Many just ignore me as I go by, and some don't seem to notice at all, me being small and all.
    SOme little girl stole some money from me. 10gp. Come to think of it, I remember her back at the FAI as well, bumping into me. Huh.
    I keep hearing more about halflings, and from what I can tell, they sound like people I might get along with as I had suspected from my friend Deder at Candlekeep. They seem to be a race that is willing to talk to about anyone without making harsh judgements first. Interesting.

    I met one of them in town, at the Burning Wizard Inn, he lifted a bit of gold from as he was going on about some boots he lost. The lil rascal, well, if I find them first, I'll just consider them bought and paid for. I decided not to cause a scene as it would have probably have been turned around until it was my fault, BPL's and all that mess. Other folks were talking about a mad cleric to the west. and when I saw the mayor at his temple to Lathander he mentioned a reward. Something I would have to check out. I also heard of Ulcaster to the east. He did not have much to sell but a few scrolls and potions. I did get two scrolls that would turn stone back to flesh. Not sure if I might need it but got a couple anyway. Never hurts to be prepared, I figger.
    Turned out I was right. We explored the temple lands a little. I ran into one stuck up human 'noble', that complained about my odor (I heard 'stinking wet lil dogs' as we passed by). I let it go. I told him to get lost.
    We happened upon a statue so perfect I figured it must have been done by some nasty ol mage or something. I read one of my scrolls and indeed, the woman came back to life. Not a mage though, but a basilisk had done that to her. I read about them in CK. Lizards that could kill with a glance. She gave me a potion that would protect me from them for a time, for saving her. She let me know she last saw it headed east before she could not move anymore.
    Something to keep in mind.
    I had also checked the local armorer. Darned if he didn't hae the finest lil crossbow I had ever scene. I wanted it but at the moment was WAY beyond my means to buy it. Maybe those basilisks had treasure enough laying around from all the people they had most likely kiiled that I could buy it. But to Nashkel first.

    We headed south again, and this time I decided to stay off the roads and stick to the trees, too many people in the area for me to feel comfortable.
    Dadburnit, but it was a good piece of luck I happened on some big ol hobgoblins on the way.

    They tried to kill us but between the three of us we took them down. One of them was carrying what looked like that halflings boots, from how he described them. Mine now, ya little scamp.

    I found that with a little ingenuity I could get them on. As soon as I put them on they molded a little better to my feet. Must be magic as I moved a little quieter in them.

    We did meet one strange human that offered me a ring. He would not say who it was from though. Maybe someone could tell me what it was.

    Finally we got to Nashkel.

    That same little girl stole money from me again. I never can catch her though, again, only 10gp. Weird. She seems to be trailing me for some reason but always runs and hides before I can get her. A human male cried out and fell by the bridge next to the water. He just managed to say he had stolen some herbs from someone named Seniyad, who had then poisoned him. Well, guess he doesn't need the herbs anymore, so I put em in my bag.

    I know I saw something familiar move off to the right of the river, near some farmhouses. So before crossing the bridge into the village we headed in that direction. When we headed over to the back gardens of the house I could see foot prints. When I looked down I saw that they were just like my own. Kobolds! I knew I saw a tail above that fence when we got to Nashkel. So, my people were near. Question was though, what were they doing around the big peoples. It was a garden so maybe they were making off with cabbages or turnips. I would find out. Maybe they could help me figure out who was after me. We followed the edge of the fields, intending to circle the town, in order to get a feel for the layout and check it out before entering proper like.

    Down at the southern edge of the field I stubbed by foot on something buried in the ground. It's not hard to miss things on the ground when one is only as tall as I am. Looked like some green armor somebody threw out and did't want any more. Well, maybe I can hock it somewhere.
    Right after that Jini popped out of the lamp to talk a bit with me. Immy seemed to notice something afterwards.

    I also met an herbalist that thought she could do quite alot with all the herbs i had just 'found'. Come in handy that would. I watched her mix up a molitov cocktail right there on the spot for me. Not to much money, seeing as I had the herbs for it already. Nice! I good contact to have I must say.

    I met one extremely rude gnome named Qualye at the fair and told him to get lost. He made a remark as to my heritage and I just left, luckily for him.

    No wonder gnomes didn't get along with my people. An ego the size of an ogre this dude had.
    We explored a bit more. There was a fair going on nearby and I thought that would be as good a spot as any to drop off Immy. I think she might be safer there than with me. I just told her to wait there.
    Ish and I decided to explore a little more of the lands around the faire. Ish and I did not stray to far off, but just enough to get the feel of the surrounding countryside.
    We finally decided to head back into Nashkel proper like. I'm tellin ya, the looks I got. I might as well have been a dragon or something. At least nobody tried to attack me. Maybe it was Ish's looks when they started to approach. She had become quite protective of me.
    I found out about a couple of bounties to be had, Brage and Prism, an artist that had run off with some gems, and an old story about ghosts in towns as well.
    We met the mayor of Nashkel who mentioned having problems at the mine. He offered us a reward for whatever we could do. Sounded good enough to me.

    We decided to check out the local inn up by the bridge. The current guard captain mention problems as well, particularly by the former commander Brage. He told me more about it back at the barracks.

    Ish and I wanted a drink after all the talk to finally made it to the inn. Maybe it was a mistake, or maybe I was starting to get used to being around big folks a little more.
    Some woman in their straight out attacked us, right in the dern inn in front of everyone. The woman cast a couple of spells at Ish, the first she fought off, but the second paralyzed her. I fired a couple shots at her but before I could put her down she went and bash Ish's head in with her club. Dirty rotten...
    As she came for me I took off out the door, hoping to hide. She was just to fast for me. I did get another shot in at her, and as I did one of the soldiers hit her with an arrow as well, killing her.

    From the bounty note she carried, I knew it was another of those same people that had sent the other at the FAI. Poor Ish. She was starting to grow on me a little, like jini. I think she would have become a great friend. he had also spoken of being reviled by others at times. I knew that feeling well. As the bartender was upset at having someone start a fight in the inn he got one of the townsfolk to help me (begrudgingly) take her out back and dig a little grave in a copse of words behind the inn.
    After he left, I just sat for a bit. For some reason the thought came to me to place a marker near her grave to warn other's away. Not sure why I chose what I did but I did.

    Got to be more careful. It might just be easier to travel by myself for a while. I did find the ghosts. It seems they lovers that had died about 100yrs ago and could never be reunited with each. I was intrigued. I helped them out just to see what would happen.
    I ended up getting them reunited which they seemed mighty grateful for. They rewarded me with a special lil pebble from the river. Nice!

    I I decided to head back to the fair and find a nice sleeping place. The town did not feel safe.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 7,122
    Oh man, I JUST started a half-orc meistersinger run (full series). Don't get me thinking about a kobold shaman, or a goblin one (dangit).

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    @ThacoBell I tried the Msinger but it seemed to have a few bugs. Unlimited rabbit summons was one I know. Can't member the other. Maybe you got it worked out. The idea is a good one, pied piper and all that. We need some giant rats in the game for him to be able to call up. B)
    Yup. So many good shaman kits now for these humanoids. Spirit walker was a beast, storm caller pretty good. Witchlight shaman good with added necro spells.
    Heh. A kobold or goblin (gobs have better animations to chose from, a bow using gob shamn would fit nicely) calling down lightning or turning into the Yak or Tiger, man. I
    Shoot, just had to remind me of my kobold shaman witchdoctor shaman (dangit is right ;) )

    Got some thinking for today :)
    I reckon Ill just roll up a few 75ers of various types and see what hits the imagination the hardest.

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited December 2017
    Curwen prestart .9 Setting up for a new run "The 75 roll No-Reload/No Resurrection Challenge"
    A reminder of the challenge:
    - You must use a non-edited roll of 75
    - You can re-roll as many times as you like
    - You may not min/max any stats or edit any abilities at all
    - You may not resurrect any party members
    - Core rules
    - Update your progress in this thread, whether it be death or success!
    - Try to roleplay your character as much as possible :)
    - Have fun

    I finally got a new run startin again after stewing on it a bit.
    Going back to a human alchemist as it fits my Lovecraftian mood and I did not get the full feel of it yet. Definitely has lower scores this time round, lawd, but am actually enjoying the development process more.
    WIll be LN this time around as he is totally devoted to his 'art-science' and is a stickler for notes and lab procedure.
    I am getting a little more used to stopping on a 75 roll, but still miss a few good uns. Shoot, I got a 96 once, just to tempt me. Filth, I was not even interested. B)

    Just for reference: The Alchemist again Alchemists are Transmuters who dedicate their lives to the study of chemistry and potionmaking. Some use their talents to sell potions and tonics, some turn their skills to adventuring, and others are motivated solely by the pursuit of truth. Alchemists are always searching for new ingredients to fuel their businesses and laboratories, and when the local economy falls short of their expectations, the Alchemist must set out on foot. Alchemists excel at making valuable brews and dangerous explosives out of whatever ingredients they can cobble together.


    Alchemical Genius:
    - Can create potions and grenades at any time outside combat. Alchemists get additional benefits from their own potions.
    - Can use Poison Weapon once per day at level 1. Gains an additional use of Poison Weapon every 4 levels after.

    Alchemical Resilience:
    - Immunity to poison
    - 10% acid resistance per level
    - 5% fire resistance per level
    - Gains 1d6 hit points per level
    - +1 to save vs. death and polymorph every 3 levels

    - Can memorize 1 fewer spell per spell level compared to a generalist mage (an Alchemist cannot cast spells until level 2)
    - -1 penalty to casting time
    - -2 penalty to caster level
    - Cannot gain most normal mage High-Level Abilities

    CONCOCTIONS: Given the right ingredients, an Alchemist can concoct any manner of potions and brews. The Alchemist can buy pure ingredients, or simply recycle them from previous concoctions. The process is similar to purchasing goods at a store, but the Alchemist can manage ingredients much more efficiently, making his or her concoctions much less expensive than a conventional apothecary's.

    More experienced Alchemists can brew a broader variety of potions and manufacture stronger explosives. There is no limit on how many potions and grenades an Alchemist can create, provided he or she has the resources to make them.

    POISON WEAPON: The same skills the Alchemist uses to create potions to soothe pain can also be used to inflict it. The Alchemist can apply a thin coating of poison to a weapon, directly injecting the toxin into the victim's bloodstream. Multiple strikes can further poison the target, but only one dose of poison can be applied to the weapon. Alchemists can develop deadlier poisons as they become more experienced.

    For the next 2 rounds after using this ability, any creature the Alchemist attacks must make a saving throw or suffer poison damage for the next 5 rounds. The effects stack and vary based on level:

    Level 1: 1d2 poison damage, plus 1 damage per round on a failed save vs. death at +4.
    Level 4: 1d3 poison damage, plus 2 damage per round on a failed save vs. death at +3.
    Level 7: 1d4 poison damage, plus 3 damage per round on a failed save vs. death at +2.
    Level 10: 1d6 poison damage, plus 4 damage per round on a failed save vs. death at +1.
    Level 13: 1d8 poison damage, plus 5 damage per round on a failed save vs. death.
    Level 16: 1d10 poison damage, plus 6 damage per round on a failed save vs. death at -1.
    Level 19: 1d12 poison damage, plus 6 damage per round on a failed save vs. death at -2.

    The poison cannot be applied to a grenade.

    High-Level Abilities:
    - Use Any Item
    - Regeneration
    - Resist Magic
    - Purity of Body
    - Business Connections
    - Extra Level 6 Spell
    - Extra Level 7 Spell
    - Extra Level 8 Spell

    - Hit Die: d6

    My roll for my startin record:

    Now for some background tonight before I start.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 17
    Curwen 1. - Alchemist of Candlekeep

    Curwen's Workshop
    Please knock before entering
    and close door behind you
    Experimentation in progress

    I posted that sign on the door to an unused part of the basement just under the outer edge the library.
    A young man of not so many years, but advanced for my age in the art of alchemy, or so I am told by the monks in the great fortress library of Candlekeep. I am interested in magic as well but it is second to my more important work in discovering new and useful concoctions (well to me anyway). One day I hope even to find the right mixture to cheat even death itself.

    I cleaned the little room up and adapted it to my purposes. Old book storage it was used for in the past, for minor material having already been copied by the scribes above and deemed no longer of worth, or that were not able to be deciphered and deemed useless to the main collection above. I kept the stranger looking books and chucked out the mundane. Gorion had arranged for me to have a secluded spot for my 'dabbling' as he called it. I had made quite the setup over the years and was proud of my little room that I spent as much time as possible, when not doing more mundane chores.

    It had a little window that was about ground level to the outside. Good for ventilation as my work developed a little fume and smoke at times.
    Well, accidents do happen. I may not always make the best choices but I learn from every mistake and attempt to improve upon it.

    I often got a chuckle as a face would peer through the bars of the window and I would hear coughing. Heh, guess I was just used to all that and was developing an immunity of sorts after working with so many different and often hazardous material.

    The scribes say I mix the best inks and colors for their work of endless recording and cataloging. I was not the best with people, preferring my workshop to the company of others. The apothecary I visited quite often, looking for ingredients and such to work with. For my inks and such I got a little allowance and the right to get whatever I needed at the time. The monk that ran it gave me some of my first lessons on mixing herbs and whatnot, so was used to seeing me around. I also learned pottery and glass blowing from the monks, which helped me develop and improve upon my lab and containers for various brews. Everyone has said at one time or another that I don't have the willpower to really push myself and learn. I suppose there is some truth to that in more mundane things but when it comes to alchemy I put everything I have into it. It doesn't hurt that I learn fast.

    So far I had quite a few concoctions that I had developed and meticulously recorded in my books.
    One of the first things I learned was that even the waste products I had left over could be useful in their own way.
    Waste sludge:

    A grenade I developed with some nice little pottery containers. The ground outside the keep has a few scorch marks where I have tried them out. The watchers had gotten a bit worried about that and ended up digging a little pit for me outside and away from the base of the keep walls that I could use for a testing area. Whenever they heard "Fire in the Hole", they got used to covering there ears around that part of the wall. The two resident dwarfs, Reevor and Arkanis, thought it was pretty interesting though.

    A special perfume ( helpful as I was not the most pleasant smelling to others at times (I guess, from the wrinkled noses I often saw):

    A special rainwater brew:

    A smoke bomb( I was really proud of this one):

    A sweet elixer:

    And my latest discovery, Bonemeal Eyedrops: (this one took a little discretion on my part for ingredients but everything was fair game as far as I was concerned in the search for knowledge.

    I have been having unusual dreams of late. Dreams of distant lands, different people with strange styles of clothing, of monstrosities so alien in appearance that when I wake in a sweat, I'm ready to flee or fight. Sometimes it seems like I hear my name being called, like a whisper in the wind.
    They started after I had been sorting out some old books left in my lab, ones not deemed necessary, or in good enough shape to read everything. I started reading as much as I could of them, or least what I decipher from their condition.

    Cultes des Goules: a book on the uses of the dead. Hmm, this is interesting as I just started using the eyeballs from birds of prey in one of my concoctions. I was beginning to think there may be something to this necromantic type of magic.

    On the Sending Out of the Soul:The first seven pages of the pamphlet contain vague mystic writing; however, the eighth page details a formula for effecting astral travel. Among the required ingredients are a brazier and the plant c. inidca(?). The formula is always successful but has an unforeseen side effect (could not make this out).
    Thesaurus Chemicus: Some most interesting ideas regarding alchemical formulae.

    A book entitled the Necronomicon: This book was probably in the worst shape of any of them but it had some very interesting parts that were still intact. It mention group of Outer Deities, once worshiped before humankind but pushed back into another plane by the Elder Gods of Toril. Many seek a way back, and a few are even partially trapped there and in this world at the same time.
    The one that caught my attention most was Yog-Sothoth, a being that transcends all time and space but is still partial blocked from fully being here on Toril. It is said he offers knowledge of all kind to those willing to help him break the great seal left by the Elder Gods.

    Yog-Sothoth knows the gate. Yog-Sothoth is the gate. Yog-Sothoth is the key and guardian of the gate. Past, present, future, all are one in Yog-Sothoth. He knows where the Old Ones broke through of old, and where They shall break through again. He knows where They have trod earth's fields, and where They still tread them, and why no one can behold Them as They tread.

    The most surprising thing I found was hidden in the back cover, a little notebook and a small packet of ashes. Stranger still was the name of the alchemist who it belonged to. Curwen, my own name. This Curwen found a way to create a spell that would transcend time and inspire a descendant to become interested in him and his work and attempt to bring him back should he ever be slain. He had found the following in his research:
    "The essential Saltes of Animals may be so prepared and preserved, that an ingenious Man may have the whole collection of man and beast in his own Studie, and raise the fine Shape of an Animal out of its Ashes at his Pleasure; and by the lyke Method from the essential Saltes of humane Dust, a Philosopher may, without any criminal Necromancy, call up the Shape of any dead Ancestour from the Dust whereinto his Bodie has been incinerated."

    Criminal? Not if it advanced the art of alchemy and science.
    It even had the formulae to do so. This I had to try, had to, whether it failed or not.
    I set it all up and prepared everything by nightfall. It took a little time and some special glass containers that I had to put together. I told no one when asked, I didn't won't interference. No one had the right to stop my work and learning.
    I finally started the process, and when I had the concoction ready I added the ashes to the solution.

    A shape began to form on my workbench, first a hand, and then quickly the rest of a human figure. I am not sure I was prepared for what happened next.
    The figure sat up on the table and turned in my direction. He looked exactly like me. The figure then spoke, a strange accent but I understood.
    "I am your ancestor Curwen, your grandfather many times past, from a different time and a different place, but you are my blood".
    I was speechless. The figure got off the table and came toward me.
    "I need your mortal vessel, I need your blood to live again. I will become you, and you shall have never been. I felt paralyzed, terrified almost out of my mind. This figure, that looked like me laid his hands upon and as he did so I could feel the life draining from my body.
    I did the first thing I could think of, and that was hard enough, I spoke the reverse of the summoning ritual I had read of in the Necronomican concerning Yog Sothoth.

    The figure facing me looked surprised and frightened at the same time, his hold began to loosen on me.
    He spoke back, a phrase I remembered that summoned Yog Sothoth.

    What happened next it is even now hard to recall. A swirling pattern of lights appeared in the workshop, as if a gateway of sorts was forming. A figure appeared, vague and hard to make out it's features.
    In a voice that was a harsh whisper, that tugged at my very sanity, it spoke:
    " I am Umr at-Tawil, a part of that which you invoke, 'Old Curwen'. You made a bargain to be reborn again, in another time and place, but you have misused it for your own sake and not that of mine, my return. And while you sought to sacrifice your young wife and unborn child, I spirited them away for my own purposes.

    This 'Young Curwen' is in possession of another's blood as well as yours. A being practically dead to this world now. With it he can be stronger than you ever thought to be, however, it will be up to him to decide his pathway, for, or against me."
    I spoke again, and quickly reasoning through what Umr at-Tawil was (an avatar of Yog Sothoth,-to see his true self risked total insanity-according to my readings) and what he really wanted (the full freedom to fully enter this world) and said:
    "I seek knowledge, not only to be of service to you, to discover the alchemical means to dissolve the great seal that holds you back, but to continue my own work as well work, to learn more"

    That seemed to have been the right thing to say as 'Old Curwen' began to dissolve right in front of me.
    Umr at-Tawil spoke to me again "We shall see boy, we shall see".
    I must have passed out after that, overcome with the mental strain of even seeing a part of the great Yog-Sothoth. When I awoke 'Old Curwen's' notebook had been dissolved along with him. Even the aclhemical knowledge from it was gone from my mind.
    I could understand his search, for I also search for the formulae to cheat death. Perhaps I could discover it again some day, and improve upon his crude methods. I only seek knowledge, where that comes from is inconsequential. But as far as taking my place, no thanks.

    Morning has come at last. As usual I got up and went about my more mundane chores until Gorion came hurrying up to me.
    "Prepare your self young Curwen, we leave this place today. Gather your things and meet me at the steps of the library"
    He would not say as to where we were going but would figure it out on the way,
    Gorion noticed I was seemed somewhat 'off' and told me I shouldn't have spent so much time in my lab room. He thought the noxious fumes were getting to my eyes, giving me a rather peculiar appearance.

    I often had a peculiar odor as well, being in my lab most of the time, "Boy, you stink worse than a skunk eating stink weed sometimes". Guess I just didn't notice anymore, or enjoyed it, one.
    Well, it doesn't bother me and I can see just fine (even though I get some startled looks at times, heh). Just the price of progress I suppose.

    I made my final rounds of the keep, said a few goodbyes, to Immy, who wanted to come with me, to Alec, who was studying with the priest of Oghma. One of the monks, Camryn, gave me a special book bag, unusual in that it could hold much more than it appeared to. He knew I collected books on various subjects and thought it would be of use.
    I asked Reevor to watch after my pet ferret, Cheeky. He said not to worry, there was plenty of work for him to earn his keep by catching rats in the barn. I shall miss that little critter. He had become a constant companion in my lab. He seemed to find great interest in sniffing my different concoctions. Maybe one day I would find another.
    In my rounds I was attacked by two men, each in a different building. I burned them with a some of the sludge I kept in little bottles about my belt.

    The place was dangerous, and to be honest it was high time to leave. Someone wanted me dead and I did not care to oblige them.
    I gathered all my notebooks and as many bottles and 'tools' and a as I could safely stash in the bag. I would miss my little lab, but I shall set up another somewhere. A couple of travelers to the keep greeted me as I was leaving, Gregor and his charge, a young girl name Rijali. She handed me an old brass lamp as they passed and said she had another. Can't say that I need it but it couldn't hurt to have at night if needed.
    Time to go.

    Gorion and I left Candlekeep. As we left I kept private about the events that had occurred last night but to myself I thought back upon them, "Not today great grandfather, not today or any other day." My work must continue the way I see fit, with due attention given of course to the one who is now most undoubtedly watching me. As long as knowledge is given me, that's good enough, I can't let the source worry me.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 17
    Curwen 2.-Travel beyond the walls of Candlekeep

    Gorion decided it best if stuck to the woods upon leaving Candlekeep. He seemed to be in a rush to get away from there. If we became separated we were to meet up at the Friendly Arm Inn. He had two friends there that could be trusted. I can't blame him for making haste as I was attacked by two assassins myself, not to mention a relative from...somewhere, and some other time.
    I am not still not quite sure how to process all I have witnessed in the last day. I had made a deal however with Umr at-Tawil, or Yog Sothoth in his true form. I wonder how shocking his appearance could truly be? No matter, I would watch for these so called 'Great Seals' left by the Elder Gods that has imprisoned most of the Old Ones such as Yog Sothoth. Perhaps I could indeed find the right concoction to break one.

    As night fell we approached the old stone circle not far from CK I was startled as Gorion said we were in an ambush. What came from out of a copse of trees I was not prepared for. A group lead by a large figure in full armor, flanked by archers and huge ogres. They wanted Gorion to hand me over to them but Gorion refused. They immediately attacked us. The archers grazed me with a couple of their arrows ad another figure behind them I had not seen at first began the incantations of some spell.
    "Run child, get out of here" Gorion said. Used to doing what he said when he spoke in that tone I took off as fast as I could. I could hear explosions and catch the flash of lightning out of the corner of my eye. Gorion was giving them all he had. Eventually I heard far behind me his cry of pain, and then the loud laughter of what must have been their leader, the man in full armor.
    I found a small cave in large mound of rocks and stayed there until I eventually fell asleep, to afraid to move. When I awoke I looked out and could see it was daylight, finally.

    I waited awhile and then decided to try and make to the road back to CK. Maybe they would let me back in but I doubted it.

    It wasn't long after I found the road when I heard Imoen call out to me. She must have sneaked out after us.

    We made it back to CK but as I figured, no entry back inside. The gate warden gave us a little gold and we left. I decided to make my way back to Gorion and see if he had any other clue on him as to what this was all about. We spied out the circle and when seeing no one around approached. Gorion was chopped just about clean in two. He did have a note on him signed only by E. We decided to make for the FAI as he had said before he died.
    We decided to keep heading through the woods as the roads were risky. They may still be out looking for me. I thought perhaps the killer's might have read Gorion's note so would have to be careful approaching the Inn. Some mage accosted us on the way, asking about my mental state. The nerve. At the next crossing a wolf came after us as well as a couple wild looking gibberlings. My smoke bombs were quite effective as a get away tactic.

    Interesting creatures those gibberlings were. I had read something back in CK that mentioned they came from the outer planes originally, possibly even from where the Old ones were from. I had learned the spell to summon a few but as of yet, am unable to quite grasp the technique well enough to do so. Most of my time has been spent in my lab advancing my craft.
    We had to run south and maybe come at the inn from the far eastern side of the road.
    Bandits had been attacking caravans by the look of it. A little halfling letter carrier I met, dying from his wounds. He asked me to deliver his letters if possible. Why not, they may have some useful info for me as to why I was being hunted. As we eventually got far enough off the road and headed north again we ran into another ogre. I threw one of my grenades at him, stunning him a couple times, enough so that Immy could put a few arrows into him and I lobed a few bottles of acid sludge at him til he eventually went down.

    As we sat down to get our breath back I took out the old lamp and started polishing it up a little. I can't stand seeing equipment in bad shape. I spose it was from keeping my lab tip top shape. Smoke poured forth and a beautiful woman appeared. She told me she was djinn, aptly named Jini, and that I was the new owner of the lamp. Cursed it was as well as I could not get rid of it even if I wanted to. She was quite nice though, even saying she was lucky enough to get me as her new owner. Huh, I guess beauty IS in the eye of the beholder after all.
    Finally, we made the inn. I waited til nightfall again before entering. I wanted to get a feel for the place first as the killers might be waiting.
    We walked through the gates and as we did a pickpocket lifted some gold from me. She took off too fast to get a good look but she seemed familiar somehow. Immy thought I was the weirdo when I mentioned the strange girl.

    Just after that we saw a woman training with her spear, quite good she was by the look of it. I noticed a little bit of orcish ancestry in her as well, which told me she really was tough, most likely. I invited Ishlilka to join us, figuring a little protection couldn't hurt at this point, esp one as strong as her.

    As it turned out my reasoning was correct, the killers did have someone waiting for me, right on the front steps of the inn, some stuck up mage. Ish was even better than I thought with that spear of hers.

    We met Khalid and Jaheira, but I decided not to have them join me at this point, maybe later. She seemed a bit overbearing in her desire to guide me. On top of that she thought I was some hunchback in comparison to Gorion, "What hump I said"? I didn't know what she was talking about. Sure, I had spent most of my time hunched over my lab tables growing up, but a hump? Never. I looked ok enough in the mirror to me.
    Some people...

    We did not stay long at the inn as I felt it was only a matter of time before someone else arrived looking to cash in on the bounty I now apparently had on me, according to a note I found on the mage that just attacked us.
    The three of us left, intending to head south. I had heard rumors from folks and from Jaheira that something was going on down in Nashkel with the iron. It wouldn't hurt to put some space between me and the folks after me, so we left and headed to Beregost, the first stop on the way south.

    One heckuva start in my life outside the walls Candlekeep.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 17
    Curwen 3.-Exploring Beregost and Nashkel

    We got to Beregost without incident, or at least no more bounty hunters. Well, there was one thing that I noticed as of late. Headaches, movement out of the corner of my eyes, an unnerving presence felt but not seen. It feels like something has gotten into my mind and started moving things around. The thing is though, I DO actually notice things I might not have before these headaches started. My senses seem to be more attuned to the hidden for some reason. When I see people approaching it feels if if I can get a vague sense of how much of a risk they might be.
    What is going on inside my mind?
    My dreams are becoming more and more strange as well. I see things in them like back at CK, before meeting Umr at-Tawil and now, even stranger still. Maybe things would get better. I kept sipping on some of my special rainwater brew, it kept the headaches from bothering me as much.

    In Beregost I heard more rumors, from down south to around there as well. A great mage was to the west, as well as some fool cleric playing with dead folks. To the east I heard of old ruins. I even ran into a woman that had been turn to stone, quickly undone by a scroll I had gotten for one of those just in case moments. She mentioned basilisk lizards farther east. Huh. May be I could mix something up to protect me from their deadly gaze. I was pretty well versed in several of the creatures spotted in the area due to all my reading back in CK. Now that I think of it, the blood of a basilisk would be a good material to experiment with.

    We finally made Nashkel, having run into only a couple of ogrillions on the way there. As we arrived I was pick pocketed again by that same girl, and again, missed catching her. Why the heck is she following me. Right before the bridge into Nashkel I saw a man collapse, complaining of being poisoned by someone named Seniyad. He had quite a collection of interesting herbs on him. I could make good use of them I think. We made the inn and were attacked by yet another bounty hunter. Between Ish and myself, she fell to the poison in her spear and my own little poison I had mixed up on the way down. Works well on my darts if I do say so myself.
    The mayor mentioned a problem with the local mines and offered a reward. Maybe at some point. I wanted to get the lay of the land around here first. The Nashkel faire seemed a good place to drop Immy off. I felt she would not be safe around me any longer.
    Ish and I traveled a little about the lands surrounding Nashkel, enough to know they were fairly dangerous. I kept thinking about the basilisks though, especially after I found a scroll from a merchant at the faire that would protect me from their gaze. I wanted to work with that blood. I know it just might be worth something that I could mix up.
    I dropped Ish off for a bit and headed that way. I was beginning to feel more comfortable on my own. After some of the dreams I had been having, my fears were diminishing somewhat for life on the run.

    I am not sure what I expected to find hunting basilisks but a friendly ghoul was not one of them. he wanted to help so why not, I doubt the basilisks could harm him with their gaze anyway.
    "Sniff em out Korax". And sniff em out he did. We developed a tactic that worked quite well. I would throw my lil pottery grenades til he got close enough, then, after stunning them, I would hit them with my acid sludge I kept in glass bottles.
    We then happened upon some fool gnome trying to tame the beasts. Well, maybe not a fool as he did train them after all. They all fell to my grenades and sludge. I must work on the grenades a bit more, I think they can be improved a little.

    After this I thought of a few uses for some of the things around me. I had been thinking of a way to pressurize my pottery jars I used for my grenades. I already had the equipment to do so from my lab.
    Pressurized gas:

    Improved grenades:

    I decided to test out a little thought regarding intelligence. I figured I could mix the brain matter from another intelligent creature with a few other ingredients to boost my own powers of reasoning for a time. The gnome would work just fine. Not like he was getting anymore use out of his, being dead and all. He would provide one last good service for me, in return for his attacks. A little messy but that's the science of alchemy at times.
    Brine Solution:

    The big lizards did indeed provide some fine material:
    Radiant Philter:

    I even improved upon my healing mixture:
    Sour Draught:

    My powers of spellcasting finally improved as well. I could summon the gibberlings to my aid as well as augment my luck. I had even mastered a form of dimensional jump, not very far but helpful.

    I got to try out the new gas grenade not long after this. A group of humans I met in the area after I killed the basilsiks thought I would make a fine example of a dead man. It was a good thing I kept a smoke bomb at the ready in my robes. Turned out they were the ones ending up dead. My gas worked a real treat on them. I ended up hauling quite a few items back to the faire to hock for a little gold to continue my experiments. Ingredients did not come cheaply.

    Back at the fair I hocked what I could. I asked Ish to join me again as well, as I wanted to visit the mage living near Beregost for some more spells that I might learn. We made it there and back again without too much trouble. I thought perhaps one of the tents at the faire would make a fine little workshop, at least temporarily.
    Ish and I entered one and got a rather rude surprise. Two mages seemed to be in dispute and when I entered one flat out killed the other with some incantation he muttered. Ish attacked with her spear, but not before the mage put up his defenses, making several other images of himself. Ish took out his defenses as I readied my posion darts. I suppose that angered the mage enough to focus his attacks on her, and unfortunately she got hit by an acid arrow straight to the chest. Before the mage could turn on me though I hit him with a couple of poison darts, dropped a smoke bomb and hid behind a big bookshelf, listening to him whine away as the posion worked into his system.
    He died but unfortunately so did Ish. I gave her a proper burial outside, but for the mage, his brain would advance my experiments.

    I started storing a few things here for my workshop, it would do quite nicely and seemed a safe enough place.

    It was then that I summoned a little helper, a little ferret like I had back at CK. This one was quite special in both intelligence and skills. Igor would be his name from now on, and he seemed pleased with it but corrected me on the pronunciation the lil sneak. "That's EYE-gor, master". Heh, he was already sniffing out all my experimental materials. Yes, ferrets were quite useful in the lab and I think Igor would be even more so.

    I decided to travel a bit more, the mines could wait. I could use a little muscle to join me in that quest, especially after Ish died. Perhaps Jahiera and Khalid might be a good idea after all.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 17
    Curwen 4.-dreams and will--o-wisps, back to the FAI and into Cloakwood. The Shadow Druids unite) (Final entry due to loss of hard drive and save)
    Before heading back to the FAI I had a dream, different than others. So far I had dreams of the Old Ones, and of something else as well, that left me with the power to heal with a touch. I am not sure about that one.
    This time it involved Jini and a man that seemed to be testing me in my dreams. He set forth certain tasks that needed doing. When I finished with them he said he had other candidate to check. Later Jini told me he really was in the dream and the man would have killed her if I had not complied.

    After I had shown Jini that I meant to protect her she invited me into her lamp. She was quite taken with me it seemed. I ended up releasing her from the geas that held her to the lamp. She decided to stay and well, show a more intimate interest in me which I can't say as I minded. This dijinn, a creature from the plane of air smelled sweeter than bee pollen on a summer wind. She even once told me once while snuggling up to my neck that I smelled good. Huh, well, I'm finally glad to meet someone that thinks the smell of sulfur and acid can be enticing in it's own way.
    It was then that she introduced me to Fay, a fairy I thought at first, but she later said she was a will-o-the-wisp that had given up luring travelers to their death in swamps and such.

    I took her under my protection. Jini kept to her lamp for the most part. She did dig up some info for me on the people after me. It seemed they were after a child of Bhaal and thought I was one as well. I told her I thought Gorion would have mentioned that if it were true. I later thought maybe what Umr at-Tawil had said about me having the blood of another back at CK might indeed mean this could be the case. It might explain the dream where I gained the power to heal. But heal, from Bhaal? It didn't quite make sense but then again I had turned my back on the sinister voice in that dream, and it did not seem happy. So what, I had a patron of my own, Yog-Sothoth.

    On my way back to the FAI I met two travelers, Monty and Xzar. Monty seemed quite dangerous and a bit antisocial in the extreme, while Xzar, well, I don't know. I think he had seen more than his mind could take and was a little off. What it was he had seen I know not. If my own experiences are something to go on then perhaps he to had seen a glimpse of the Old Ones. He seemed interested in death more than anything else. He did seem to know quite a bit about anatomy so I decided to learn whatever I could from him. I knew my own interest in magic had included necromancy. For me though it was a means to discover more of my own craft, the search for the elixir of life.
    They traveled with me to the FAI where I met Jaheira and Khalid again. The two pairs did not seem ti like each other very much to be honest, but seemed willing to travel together for the time being. It was then that I also met a rakshasha by the name of Verr'Zsa. He had been turned to stone for the collection of some mage. The mage didn't take to kindly to my questions about his statue and had to be put down. He had the scroll that reversed the spell, bringing Verr to life once again. He was hunting the ones that had done this to him. I surmised that the place where he needed to find them was the stone circle where Gorion had been killed. In return for leading him there he would help me afterwards in whatever task needed doing.

    Verr got his revenge on the man that had wanted him for a statue and did indeed agree to help me afterwards.

    As we headed south I wanted to look into something an old dwarf had mentioned earlier in Beregost. Something about losing a cloak in the Cloakwood forest. Heh. Our group entered the ominous looking forest. Jaheira was a bit more helpful here with advice and such. The place was filled with giant spiders, ettercaps and wyverns. About everything was poisonous for that matter. I had built up a resistance to poison over the years so that didn't really bother me so much but those wyverns were huge. It was then we met a group of druids that Jaheira knew. Seniyad (I knew that name, but said nothing of the herbs) warned us of a splinter sect of druids in the area that they were there to stop. They had infiltrated the group but had not heard from their contact. They had learned that an an upcoming Shadowmeet, one of their other filtrators was going to be sacrificed. I greed to help Jaheira rescue her friend but to be honest I just wanted to know more of these Shadow Druids. She said they wanted people to return to a more simple way of life, hunting and gathering amidst nature as opposed to taking over and changing nature, or destroying it for their own ends.
    It sounded interesting.
    Oh, and lil Igor got into the pockets of about everyone we met, heh. He found a ring on Jaheira's druid friend the lil sneak. Well, its in his nature. Who am I to suggest he go against that?
    We headed deeper into the forest, and from there on out met danger at ever corner.

    We met one of these Shadow Druids on the way to where this Shadowmeet was to be held. When I said I hunted those that would defile the forests he took a lighter tone, even offering me a potion. Jaheira said to throw that filth out. The woman had no appreciation for alchemy and potion making whatsoever.
    We finally came upon the Shadow Druids and Jaheira's friend. Jaheira jumped to the attack before I could even talk to them. She was getting on my nerves here.
    These druid were tough, even summoning insects to fight for them. In the end we had to kill them all. Jaheira's friend said they were holding another captive at the great tree to the west, the home base of the the Shadow Druids.
    Suffice it so say that we met one of the Shadow Arch-Druids and he and his band were extremely dangerous. Several of my group were killed, both Jaheira and Verr, and Monty soon after by a spider on the way back. We never did find Jaheira's other friend, they must have taken her away during the fight. That darn Seniyad did not even appreciate what we had done for him.
    Death seems to follow me.

    We did meet the other Shadow Arch-druid there. He did not seem to mind the fact that I defeated his colleague. Seems they value competition by way of combat, with the loser not being fit to lead. At least with him I got the chance to say that I hunted for those ruining the area. He mentioned a mine deep in the forest but did not offer more info. It would have to wait for another time it seemed.

    Lil Igor tried picking his pocket before we left, heh. I was surprised at what this druid said to him. Called him a filthy creature he did. Huh. Some druid he is. It was just a game to Igor, and he meant no real harm. Luckily for Igor, Amarande missed him with his club. We took off not wanting to push the confrontation anymore.

    When we got back to the faire Khalid wanted some time to himself to mourn his wife. Only Xzar was left with me after the trip into the dangerous Cloakwood, and he talked to Monty like he was still alive. Weird guy but knew his craft for sure. One of the things he was working on was a slime-jelly crossbreeding experiment.
    I took some of my gold into Nashkel and met Juoma the herbalist. More than that she was I suspect, and practiced a form of alchemy herself. With some of the special herbs I had found earlier off the poisoned man she fashioned a fine dagger. It cost a bit was was a beauty to behold.

    Xzar and I decided to head to Beregost for more 'materials'.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    As my hard drive has got to be replaced in a couple days I probably will not update this til then. No telling what will happen then to the modded game then, so might as well prep for it. So far all my downloads were deleted for mods but I have managed to get them downloaded and in a safe file again. Will probably end up doing a fresh install from BD and add mods back in. I might need a full reinstall of Windows depending.
    This downtime away from the game (moves slower than molasses when it doesn't totally crash from the crappy drive) has got my restartitis trying to get a holta my attention. That starts declining when away from a run unfortunately.
    I think I might just roll some 75 stat rolls, screen shot em for reference and write em down if it all gets wiped. At least I can get a backstory going here on the forum to ready myself.
    Will be working up another kobold run to have ready just in case I need (yeah right, who am I kiddin, kobold witchlight shaman with necro spells is calling my name hard. Dadburn my hide...

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 23
    New hard drive and fresh download, whewww. New 75er challenge run -strict.
    - You must use a non-edited roll of 75
    - You can re-roll as many times as you like
    - You may not min/max any stats or edit any abilities at all
    - You may not resurrect any party members
    - Core rules
    - Update your progress in this thread, whether it be death or success!
    - Try to roleplay your character as much as possible :)
    - Have fun

    My kobolds are based on 1st n 2nd editon's. Warm blooded egg layers, more akin to some birdlike dinosaurs rather than cold blooded alligator looking lizard folk.
    Puk - Kobold Witchlight Shaman.

    Fireflies, Spiders, and Spirits. Leaving home

    If that dwarf Reevor steps on my tail once more, I swear I'm gonna...

    I grew up in Candlekeep knowing that I was the only kobold ever to be allowed inside that great library fortress.

    I came to realize that most folks thought of my kind no better than that of the rats I was oftentimes sent to trap about the barns and food pantries. And just for the record, some those critters were big, well, at least to me when I was only about knee-high to Gorion. That dwarf Reevor got a kick out of locking me in with them when I was younger. Between him and the watchers joking about the size of the rats I pictured a ravenous horde of kobold eating monsters. Big peoples humor I guess.

    I kept nighttime hours as the cruel sun irritated my heat sensitive eyes. Gorion was able to get me permission to roam freely about the keep at night in order that I get my chores done at a time more comfortable for me. During the quiet nighttime hours I delighted in watching the fireflies flash about the keep. It was the spiders about Candlekeep that first got me interesting in death. They seemed to be the perfect predator-small, but perfect trapbulder's.

    I would often sit in the moonlight and watch a spider build it's web and wait patiently for some flying creature to become ensnared and taken captive, wrapped in silk, and later drained of all fluids. As I was up at night it was most often fireflies that I saw in the spider's traps.

    There was something intriguing about the whole hunting process. Often I wondered to myself what happens to the light, to that fire the firefly makes after it dies. Even after wrapped up in silk by the spider I could still see it's light still flash, for a time. Eventually though, the light would stop. At first I thought maybe the spider gained the firefly's power, but the spiders never glowed like their prey.

    It was strange, I delighted in seeing a master trap maker at work but at the same time was sorry to see the light from the fireflies disappear. Eventually I decided it was just a part of nature, the impersonal, indifferent, and unforgiving aspects of nature, the cycle of life and death. It came to make sense to me after a while. The watcher's often commented on my eyes during their rounds about the keep with a lantern in hand. They glowed a bright red in darkness, not unlike the glow of a firefly, so it was not hard for them to recognize me. I wondered what would happen to that bright light in my eyes if I died.

    After a time I began to realize something about myself. I knew that I looked different than the big peoples (they didn't even have horns, a tail, or my fine grey hair-like covering of scales) but I could also see things they could not. I first noticed this once while thinking about those trapped fireflies and their dying light. If I concentrated hard enough I could see the exact moment of their death. I could see bright light from their tiny bodies float up into the sky,grow fainter and disappear. I can still remember the first time that I called out to that light as it floated up into the night sky.
    "Wait, please don't leave yet, come back to me".
    The light came to me, and I could still make out the form of the firefly within that light. They would stay as long as I kept concentrating on them. One of the watcher's noticed this once, he could see them when I asked them to return to this world. I remember thinking as he reached out to touch one and was burned, getting a severe shock of electricity, that perhaps I had something to protect me if I ever needed it. After awhile, I could call upon them anytime, day or night. Even more unusual was that fireflies often came to me just before dying. Were they scared or did they just want comfort? It must have looked unusual to others. Gorion seemed a little concerned but said nothing other than "Do not call up that which you cannot put down."
    After that I could see other spirits about the keep as well.

    Sometimes they were those of dead scribes, that still felt so tied to their work that they refused to leave the land of the living. I got strange looks when I would hop up on an empty stool and looked down at what the spirits scribe was writing or copying. They could see me as well, and would often show me pictures they were drawing to illustrate their books.
    Often a monk would walk by and see me staring up intently at one of the spirits sitting at the same desk he did when alive. I am not sure they knew what to think of that.
    Were they so tied to their life of copying that they did not want to leave even after death? Or did they just get lost and not know where to go?

    It was Reevor that made a nickname for me not long after the watcher incident, 'Firebug'. He had come up to me one night and said, "Awww, ain't that sweet, shorty short short rat boy likes playin with bugs". He then started swattin at the fireflies. What he didn't know was that they were the 'in-between life and death' spirit-like necrotic fireflies I had learned to call upon to keep me company. I gave him a mean look and started talkin under my breath.
    "Don't gimmi any ah yore yipyak'in boy". I set a big group of fireflies after him then. Heh, I still remember that dwarf a steppin and fetchin like his head was on fire and his ass was catchin. After that he seemed a little more cautious around me, even if he still gave me disgusted look at times. Taller than me and as wide as a door he was a bit scary even at the best of times.

    At least it was better than some of the other names I got called like 'rat boy' because of my tail or 'wet doggie', the way they described my odor, and the shorty jokes for that matter. I couldn't stand that talk. I mean I was a full 3'2", kinda tall I understand among kobolds.
    I ended up making a little charm out of a bottle used for the monk's ink after that. One of the lil firefly spirits came to me once and never wanted to leave. It seemed to be happy resting n that lil charm I kept about my neck. I even opened it from time to time, and when I did it would often do a playful little dance around me before going back to the bottle.

    A few of the monks and scribes often read me stories when I was younger about the history of various peoples, races and monsters.

    I think they enjoyed it most because I listened so intently upon their every word. Even after I learned to read I still liked to hear a good story. It was Camryn the elven scribe would read to me the most, and as he knew a little of the language of my people I picked up a few phrases even. I wanted to learn more, to meet others like me someday, to be accepted in a tribe of my own kind. From what I have learned though about my people that may not be the easiest thing to do. It may be I end up making a tribe of my own, I don't yet know.
    He taught me some about the gods of my people. Kurtulmak was thought of as the father of our kind but also the most unforgiving of other races, particularly of gnomes, who often stole our homes from the caves and dark thick forests where we lived. Dakarnok, a shaman war chieftain that rose to become a very warlike demigod. He even mentioned Kuraulyek the god of the urd's, our winged cousin's. He had been a follower of Kurtulmak until he stole a pair of wings from him after a raid on Syranita, protector-goddess of the bird-like race of aarakocra. The two hate each other now.

    The last he mentioned to me, Gaknulak, the Trapmaker. He was the kobold deity most interested not in conflict with other races, but of the protection of all kobold kind from others, mostly wanting his shaman's to focus inward on the tribe and not making trouble elsewhere. Defensive rather than offensive, although at times he taught our people to be pre-emptive in their defenses with ambushes and trapbuilding. He actually got along ok with the urd deity, whereas the others did not. It was even rumored that he and the deity Gond could at times hold a reasonable discussion. Still he did not think well of gnomes who usually attack kobolds on sight. I often thought of Gaknulak while watching the spiders build their webs, the most perfect trapmakers I had ever seen.
    I eventually decided all had their place among my people.

    It was not my people but the spirit world itself that held the most interest to me, the unknown and often feared 'in between' space that would hold my focus. I did not demand anything from the spirit world, it was closer to a partnership. I would ask and was always answered in return. I'm not sure by what exactly. The spirit worlds touches many other planes I gathered from the monks and priests.

    I think there is something else out their as well, an angry spirit that had taken an interest in me and my fascination with fiery like spirits in particular ( I even dressed myself in the yellowish orange color of fire). I can see what almost looks like a giant face, angry and in anguish as if trapped. It scares me but at the same time I wonder if I can help in some way. I knew of Kossuth,an Elder Being, worshiped as a deity by some, fire elementals in particular, but I do not think that is who it is somehow. This is something much older I have come to believe. Only time will tell.

    I never knew my mother and Gorion had said she died soon after I hatched. He had apparently been a friend of hers for many a season. That was hard to believe considering how most encounters between my kind and the big peoples ended, but here I am and know nothing more. I suppose in a way he was more like a human parent than a kobold parent anyway, as every kobold, as soon as they hatch from their egg is raised by the whole tribe.
    Gorion never mentioned my father at all, not that my kind were particularly interested in such things as that, but he said nothing.
    Of my friends I had not many growing up. There was Alec, a man training to be a priest of Oghma. Imoen, a girl that acted like she was my sister at times. I thought that strange but maybe she saw me differently than others. Deder was the only other I really got along with, a halfling that lived there. He was the only one I did not have to look up to, literally. He was also the most accepting of me for who I was, or at least seemed to be.I am not sure if it was because of our similar heights or that his people were just more accepting in general. I knew from Camryn that among kobolds height was very important. They often looked down on those shorter and feared those taller than themselves.

    Other than Gorion I was always pretty distrustful of mages in general. Ulraunt was just plain scary, not to mention the looks I got from him sometimes. It didn't make sense to me, the magic they called upon, it seemed unnatural. Better to ask nature and spirits for help. At least with them one could know what they were about, for the most part anyway.
    I know I am certainly not the smartest there but I have heard the word 'wily' used more than once to describe me. I asked Camryn once about that. He stopped to think for a second, and said to me, "Yes my dear boy, you most certainly live up to your race in that respect, more so than most I think". I suppose so, but then again I had never even met another of my kind. I did know I had more common sense than many there, except perhaps for the priests of Oghma themselves.
    Something new has come to my routine today. Gorion came and found me before sunrise, saying that were leaving Candlekeep immediately. I am not sure why yet. I am to gather my things and equip myself at Winthrop's for a journey, to where I do not know. I am a little worried about going outside the walls of my home. Even now it stills seems big but the world outside of it's comforting walls seems almost too big to imagine. I also worry about how the big peoples will react to me. At times it has felt hard enough to be halfway accepted here but outside in the land of big peoples seems a daunting almost unimaginable task.
    I made my rounds quickly and said my goodbyes to the few I considered my friends. Camryn gifted me with a special book bag that held more than it appeared able to. Deder gave me a fine pipe and some of his best baccy that he knew I liked. I was also approached by a young girl traveling with a man. She thrust an old brass lamp into my hand as they walked by. She said she had another and didn't need it any longer. Guess it would help to read at night sometimes.
    Reevor got me one last time by tricking me into the barn with a bunch of rabid rats. I had to kill them as they attacked me. Dumb dwarf.
    I was headed to the monk's and priest's quarters when two men attacked me there. One was hiding in wait for me in each. They said something about making it big if they brought back my head. I was forced to kill men for the first time in my life. I survived and they did not.


    I went to meet Gorion and off we went, into the land of the big peoples.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 7,122
    Kobolds are fun. I need to try another kobold run sometime.

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    ThacoBell said:

    Kobolds are fun. I need to try another kobold run sometime.

    @ThacoBell Yup. Takes a little extra maneuvering to deal with their slower walking speed but it does make sense given their size. That just adds to the interesting factor though, along with the sounds they make in combat.
    How is the Meistersinger coming along, any big bugs you've encountered? He needs a good ol fashioned summon rat horde ability, hehheh.

  • ThacoBellThacoBell Member Posts: 7,122
    I don't think I've noticed any. The rabbit thing is intentional, its one of the new cantrips. But I agree, it does need a good swarm summon.

    Have you considered sharing some of your favorite charnames in the charname appreciation thread?
    Its a thread for people to post their favorite charnames and there is even some fanart. I'm excited to see where the thread goes, but it hasn't gotten much traffic yet.

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    I just saw that earlier. Might do, might do. ;)

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited December 2017
    A description of the Witchlight Shaman kit (by @LavaDelVortel ) from my PC info page.
    WITCHLIGHT SHAMAN: Also known as 'necrotic shamans', these men and women commit themselves to the study of death, spirits, and feared necromantic rituals. Although they are not evil and choose to preserve the common balance between the dead and the living, most people associate them with necromancers, members of the Cult of the Dragon and followers of Cyric. Because of their infamous reputation, they mostly try to stay away from civilization. Most Witchlight Shamans do not wish harm upon others and some even help those who suffer from illnesses and diseases to - as they would say - examine if it is their time to join the dead.

    *+2 bonus to save vs. death.
    *Receives the following necromancy spells as divine magic:
    Level 1: Larloch's Minor Drain (gained at 3rd level)
    Level 2: Horror (gained at 5th level)
    Level 3: Vampiric Touch (gained at 7th level)
    Level 4 Animate Dead (gained at 9th level)
    Level 5 Exploding Skull (gained at 11th level)
    Level 6 Death Spell (gained at 13th level)

    -Shamanic dance summons the following creatures:
    1st level: Necrotic Fireflies, up to 2 swarms at the same time
    6th level: Lesser will-o'-wisps and Greater Necrotic Fireflies, up to 3 spirits at the same time
    12th level: Will-o'-wisps and Spectres, up to 4 spirits at the same time
    18th level: Greater will-o;-wisps and Firey Spirits, up to 5 spirits at the same time

    *6th level: May use Control Undead.
    CONTROL UNDEAD: The witchlight shaman takes control of a target undead creature for 1 round per level on a failed save vs. spell, with an extra -1 penalty to save every 10 levels.

    *8th level: May use Boneblade.
    BONEBLADE: The witchlight shaman conjures forth a magical dagger of bone. The dagger deals 2D4+2 piercing damage per hit and has 10% chance of dealing one poison damage per second for 10 seconds (save vs. death to avoid) and a 5% chance of draining one level from the victim (no save). The boneblade lasts for one turn and strikes as a +4 weapon.

    From 16th level onwards, the boneblade deals 2d4+4 damage per hit and has a 20% and 10% to poison and level drain respectively.

    *14th level: May shapeshift into a Spirit Treant once per day.
    SPIRIT TREANT: The witchlight shaman performs a ritual which transforms him temporarily into a powerful treant, granting great strength and durability at the cost of mobility. While transformed, the shaman is capable of dancing and casting spells at a reduced rate. The transformation lasts for up to two minutes.

    *-2 penalty to save vs spells.
    *-2 penalty to maximum dexterity and charisma.
    *May be only of true neutral alignment
    *May only be proficient is daggers, spears, axes, quarterstaves and shortbows.
    *Begins with 10% in Detect Illusion instead of 20%.
    *-1 penalty to party reputation.


    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 23
    2. Puk - Kobold Witchlight Shaman
    Candlekeep- Life and death beyond the walls

    Gorion and I headed into the woods beyond Candlekeep. He walks pretty fast for an old man and I had a little trouble keeping up with him. It was not a particularly dark night and my heat sensitive eyes could easily see him ahead of me. He mentioned that if we were to become separated I should head for the Friendly Arm Inn to meet two of his friends. He did not seem to have a definite destination in mind and to tell the truth, everything seemed much bigger than I remembered it from atop the walls.
    I began to notice a foul stink on the wind, like that of cuddled milk. Suddenly Gorion stopped and said we were in an ambush. Just as he did I could see figures approaching ahead. A huge figure in full armor flanked by archers and two humongous ogres (that explained the stink- and people say I have an odor, pheh).
    I had never felt so small looking up at them.

    "Hand over your ward" the armored figure said in a deep voice. Gorion was not about to and as they attacked he yelled at me to run and began the incantation to some spell. I was grazed by three arrows before I could skippity hop run out of there. I could hear the 'boom' of one Gorion's fireball, with the ensuing screams of pain. Eventually I heard Gorion cry out. I had seen life and death before, even the dead walk, but when Gorion died it felt as if the last ties to my history before CK died as well. So be it, I would either live or die, that was nature, some things are stronger and others weaker.
    I did not know where to go or where to hide so I stopped for a few seconds and concentrated. I could see the spirits of fireflies ahead of me, as if they were guiding me along a little path in the night.

    They led me to an old overturned tree that I was able to scoot up under rest for a bit. A few living fireflies seems wanting to keep me company and as I watched their flashing lights, fell alseep, exhausted.

    I awoke to the harsh light of the morning sun. When I climbed out so I was near the road to CK. As I started that way I heard Imoen call out to me.

    She must have sneaked out after us last night and fell behind. We headed back to CK to see if they would let us back in but no luck. The gatekeeper gave me a little gold and I decided to make my way back to Gorion and bury him. When I got to him the bugs were already gathering about his body, nature's morticians. I decided just to build a little stone cairn for him. He had a note on him mentioning travel to the FAI so I would have to be careful approaching it as his killers might have seen it as well.
    Headed east an old man, a mage by the look of him, accosted me. As my mental state was none of his business. We made it to the FAI safe but I wanted to wait til dark before entering. I wanted to sit and watch for a bit, just in case those killers came a looking. Night fell and just as we entered a girl brushed past me. I later found she had stolen some gold from me. She looked somewhat familiar but I could not quite place her. Imoen made some comment about ME being the weirdo...nice Imoen,real nice. Big peoples, pheh. I think I will take her someplace safe away from the FAI and drop her off at a safer place.

    Walking through the gates we came upon a tall warrior training with her spear. After listening to me I suggested we travel together.

    Really, having a warrior might come in handy if the people that had killed Gorion and wanted me were there.
    I was right. Some fool mage was after me but he fell to Ishlilka's spear.

    I was a little nervous about going into the inn, not only from the bounty hunter (according to a note on him), but also because I was not sure how people would react to me here. A gnomish priestess had a temple there we met. I was surprised how at how she reacted to me as she did not seem to mind a kobold walking in there. Maybe it was because of the two big peoples I had with me. Was all this stuff about gnomes hating kobolds right?
    I started hearing more about the problems with iron inside from folks willing to talk to me. We met Jaheira and Khalid, Gorion's friends but as Jaheira insulted me straight out I told them I would go my own way. Maybe they were not as friendly as Gorion thought they would be to me. Well, Khalid seemed ok. Maybe I would see them later.

    We found the ogre south of the FAI a dwarf had told me about. He wasn't hard to find as I smelled that curdled milk odor before he even saw us. He was not interested in talking I think and would rather just eat us. It didn't happen though.

    Before leaving the area we came upon a caravan that had been attacked. The lone survivior was a halfling that had been eviscerated and I know would not last much longer. I just sat with him, and let him have a smoke on my pipe which he appreciated. He could still laugh I noticed when I told him he might feel a bit of a draft as he asked what I thought about his condition, poor guy. He was a letter carrier and asked if I would deliver the letters he had. It couldn't hurt, might even help with my own situation if I read through them. I must find these halflings, tough as nails they are, and more friendly than the big peoples for the most part.
    We did not spend time long in Beregost but I heard of several places nearby. Firewine Ruins and a halfling village to the east, and a great mage to the west. Mages were scary but maybe he knew of Gorion and could help me in some way. I would just have to deal with my worries over arcane users and toughen up. We also heard of some madman nearby that was playin with dead folks. That sounded interestin gas maybe we could share ideas on spirits and necromantic rituals.
    From the temple of Lathander nearby I picked up a scroll that returned stone to flesh on a whim, but later in the area got to use it on a statue so lifelike it I figured it must have been alive at one time. Indeed it was, a woman that told me to beware of basilisks in the area. She gave me a potion that would protect me from there stoney gaze if I needed it. I knew of them from listening to the stories the monks would tell me back at CK.
    We finally made it to Nashkel where we were met by the same pickpocket from the FAI. Why does she stealing only 10gp, and why is she following me? I saw a man collapse by the water near the bridge and went to his side. He said he had been poison by someone called Seniyad. I just sat by his side til he died as there was nothing I could do. He had a stock of herbs on him I could make use of I think.
    Off to the right side of the river I thought I noticed movement around a farmhouse, a tail not unlike my own. Did kobolds live here as well? We went to check it out but I only found footprints, just like my own. Well, I would keep an eye out for my kinfolk. Maybe they could tell me something about what was going on in the area with the iron I keep hearing about.
    (kobolds a sneakin', classic movies mod)

    I dropped Imoen off at the fair next door to Nashkel as it seemed safe enough. Ish and I went back into town to see what info we could gather about the area. I did see a ghost by the bridge and was able to help him find his way back to his lover and their departure from the realms of the living. They seemed thankful, as everyone else had stayed away from them for about 100 years. Jeeze, some priest this town has. I guess he could not kill them so just ignored them. All they needed was someone to offer a little help instead of hate.

    Ish and I met the mayor who offered us a reward for investigating the mines nearby. There were stories about demons down there and such around town. Maybe later, I wanted to get the lay of the land first, maybe even find out the problem with the basilisks back at the temple near Beregost.
    We walked into the Inn and as soon as we did were approached by some woman threatening to kill us. She would not be persuaded to stop and attacked. All hell broke loose after that. Ish went at her with her spear and I called down flame upon her. She kept coming at us though and went on to cast some spell at Ish that held her motionless. I could do nothing quick enough to keep her from killin Ish, so ran out the door.

    There were big people all around me, ignoring me. I chugged down the potion I bought at the fair that would make would invisible. A good thing as the woman came out the inn mad as all get out. Rassad, the monk I talked to earlier came to help but she bashed his head in with with some glowing hammer.

    After he fell she bashed in the head of a guard as well. I was too scared of her and that hammer of hers to do anything, but a few more guards came and eventually shot her down. It seems wherever the big peoples are trouble always seems to be there right along with them.

    I managed to pull Ish back around the inn and bury her in a small grave in a grove of trees. She would be missed but she would eventually break down into another part of nature. Life seems harsh at times, but really it's just the normal cycle of life and death, at least that is the way of things in the world as I knew, and was better coming to understand the more time I spend outside the walls of CK. Death fascinates me still, and it looks like I will see much more of it in the near future. After I finished burying Ishlilka I noticed a rather inquisitive squirrel watching. Went I spoke to him he even spoke back. Eventually he gave me a little stone that was quite unusual, and as I would find out, lucky to have.

    I found an alchemist in Nashkel that could make could use of the herbs I found. She even made me a dagger and used them and some sulfurous material to enchant it with the properties of fire that I am drawn to.

    I decided I would I would find this halfling village Gullykin. At least there I would not feel so small as I did around all the big peoples here.
    Off I went.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 561
    edited December 2017
    Very imaginative role playing. I offer a further music suggestion: the Lovecraftian collaborations by Cryo Chamber? Such as:

    You may have already listened to these, but I thought you'd find it interesting. They've also done Azathoth, Nyarlathotep and maybe some others.

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    @OrlonKronsteen Thanks. :) They have some good stuff and suggestions to even more. I'm not sure if I have run across that before or not but definitely some nice sounds. Helps me in my write ups to have some appropriate background music playing. I think I have just the spot in mind coming up for one of those pieces I have not heard already.
    I tell ya, I do my hardest to stray from putting a little Lovecraft in my runs sometimes but he always seems to creep back into my mind, one way or another, heh. ;)

  • OrlonKronsteenOrlonKronsteen Member Posts: 561
    It's hard not to let other influences in. The good thing about my utter lack of Forgotten Realms lore (and my lack of interest in it) is that it's easier to allow those other influences into your game (like non-FR gods). Perhaps I'll one day stumble upon a town called Innsmouth while exploring the Sword Coast.

    As for music, I turned off the BG soundtrack years ago and always stream dark ambient or heavy metal in the background. Sometimes electronica like Carbon Based Lifeforms...

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited December 2017
    Too much time passed on playing my kobold, but I did like the addition of kobold shamans added to the Nashkel mines from DSoftSC. Goblin shamans were nice as well to see. The Nome 'Sitkkuh' dagger made by kobolds was a nice addition on my kobold run as well

    Got to be put off for another time though. New ideas are a brewin'

  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 26
    Prep for a new run:

    For new visitors to the Asylum, the challenge:
    - You must use a non-edited roll of 75
    - You can re-roll as many times as you like
    - You may not min/max any stats or edit any abilities at all
    - You may not resurrect any party members
    - Core rules
    - Update your progress in this thread, whether it be death or success!
    - Try to roleplay your character as much as possible :)
    - Have fun

    Now to something a little darker for this challenge as befits my mood as of late. This was a toughy getting an unedited roll of 75 to match my idea of the character. And as for the no resurrection, well, fits very nicely with my ideas.
    Enter one of my favorites, the Pale Master:
    PALE MASTER: Necromancy is usually a poor choice for arcane spellcasters -- those who really want to master the deathless arts almost always pursue divine means. However, an alternative exists for those who desire power over undead but refuse to give up their arcane craft completely. Enter the pale master, who draws on a font of special lore that provides a macabre power all its own.

    - 1st level: Gains Boneskin.

    BONESKIN: The pale master's tough, cadaverous flesh gives them a +1 to AC (+2 at 7th, +3 at 13th).

    - 2nd level: May use Animate Dead once per day.

    ANIMATE DEAD: As per the mage and cleric spell, summons an allied skeleton warrior to serve the caster.

    - 3rd level: Gains Deathless Vigor.

    DEATHLESS VIGOR: The pale master’s body becomes more akin to the undying flesh of his undead associates. Gains infravision, immunity to sleep and +1 to saves vs. death (+2 at 8th, +3 at 13th).

    - 6th level: The pale master gives in to terrible necrophiliac urges. He cuts off his arm and replaces it with an undead prosthetic, which may be skeletal in form or preserved flesh stitched in place like that of a flesh golem. May use Undead Graft twice per day.

    UNDEAD GRAFT: The pale master touches a target with a ghoulish hand. Target must save vs. death or be held for 5 rounds.

    - 10th level: Undead Graft saving throw at -1.
    - 12th level: Gains Tough as Bone.

    TOUGH AS BONE: The pale master becomes more and more like one of the implacable undead. Immunity to hold, stun and poison.

    - 14th level: Undead Graft saving throw at -2.
    - 15th level: May use Create Skeleton Abomination once per day.

    CREATE SKELETON ABOMINATION: Summons a powerful skeleton abomination to serve the caster for 2 hours.

    - 16th level: The pale master's touch becomes deadly and can instantly kill a target. May use Deathless Master's Touch twice per day.

    DEATHLESS MASTER'S TOUCH: The pale master touches a target with a life-snuffing hand. Target must save vs. death with a -3 penalty or die instantly.

    - 18th level: Undead Graft saving throw at -3.
    - 20th level: Gains Deathless Mastery.

    DEATHLESS MASTERY: The pale masters are practically undead creatures themselves. Immunity to death magic and level drain.

    - Hit Die: d6

    - May cast one fewer spell of each level per day.
    - Alignment restricted to non-good.
    - Incurs a -2 penalty to Charisma.

    My vision will include some ideas from the old Death Master class from an old Dragon Magazine article. There will be some other limitations as the run progresses as well.
    Death Master based stats I was going for(this was the tough bit) :
    Str 9+
    Dex 12+
    Con 14+
    Int 15+
    Wis 12 max
    Chr 7 max

    Now to beginning the descent, er, I mean the fun part >:) :) .

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 26
    1. Zaghoul - Palemaster. Life in Candlekeep

    My skin, it's happening...

    Death comes to all sooner or later. Over the years of my confinement, as I have come to regard my life in Candlekeep, I began to think I should embrace it rather than trying to keep it at arms length. For as long as I can remember I always attended the death ceremonies for any that died at CK. I was fascinated with the whole process the monks would go though in preparation for burials. Often they would look down and see me looking up as they prepared the bodies for their last resting spot. Usually this was a burial but some had opted to be cremated. What happened to the ashes, what happened to the flesh after it was buried or burned? I even helped them dig the ground or light the fires, when they allowed me to. There were times I went out into the snow at night and just sat, looking up at the moon, without my clothes, for as long as I could. What would happen to me if I died? There must be more, shouldn't there? Even though I came close to dying once, the cold felt invigorating, just as the scent of death often did when I was occasionally allowed to help the priests prepare the dead for burial. Gorion, my foster father seemed a little concerned over this but did nothing to prevent my involvement.

    I always wondered what happened to the bodies afterwards. The monks spoke of souls and spirits but I was more interested in the flesh itself. What happened afterwards, and why. Most there spoke as if it was a special matter for humans as compared to the animals that died naturally, and those that were killed, as all the animals were eaten. For some reason it seemed a waste of the flesh for humans not to be used for the same purpose. Why? A strange notion I knew but no one seemed to understand my questions, or answer them. What was causing these thoughts?

    When the dreams finally began, all started to become clear, but I felt a change in myself over time. Strange, maddening, and monstrous dreams, dreams that both frightened me to my very core and tugged at my very sanity, but at the same time held me in thrall as to what would I would see next. I traveled to what I thought must be a land that existed only in my mind, clouded, dark, and populated with creatures I had never seen before. "The madness and monstrosity lay not in the landscape but in the the creatures themselves-as they were seldom completely human, but only approached humanity in varying degrees. Most of their bodies, while roughly bipedal, had a forward slumping, and a vaguely canine cast. The texture of the majority was a kind of unpleasant rubberiness."(HPL)

    What I saw in my dreams were these creatures feeding on the corpses of humans. They did not seem to kill them but brought them already dead from somewhere else, someplace dark that I could not see beyond, or at least that is what it seemed like.
    As I became more accustomed to my dreams and the place to which I traveled I began to get the feeling of being watched, of being judged.

    At least I know where these thoughts of flesh were coming from, or so I thought.
    As time progressed my own studies into necromancy intensified, in my own style, as Gorion wouldn't help me at all. In my searches throughout the darker corners of the library I found a book that was most enlightening, Cultes des Goules. It was about necromancy and included depictions of necromancy, necrophagy, and necrophilia as practiced by a secret cult of Ghouls. It also spoke of a place called Midian, which was a realm once inhabited by ghouls until they were cast out. When they were cast out they took up worship to a Great Old One named Mordiggian. It made mention of beings referred to as The Elder Gods, that had fought and either trapped or pushed out to another plane The Great Old Ones. I needed to know more about this but no one in Candlekeep seeming willing to discuss it or know anything more.

    Not long after that discovery there was one dream I had in particular, at least I thought at the time it was a dream, that opened my eyes to something extraordinary. I dreamt a figure in tattered robes and a hood entered my room, walking slightly slumped over. It spoke to me with sounds unknown to me except in my previous dreams, a kind of meeping or gibberish lisping like language. It was the sounds the creatures that fed upon the corpses made. It beckoned that I follow it through a door that had opened in my bookshelf. A narrow passage was within, seemingly roughly cut into the thick outer wall of my room. A narrow and roughly carved set of stairs led ever downward until I felt we were below Candlekeep itself. The figure stopped in a kind of antechamber to a larger room ahead. It was partially lit by a smoky lantern it had grabbed from an alcove and what must have been a window carved into the cliffs overlooking the ocean below.
    Two other similar figures joined the first and it was then I could see their faces, canine like I had seen before. The stench of death was about them but it seemed almost intoxicated to me now. One of the figures held open a book.

    It was very old and tattered, bound in human flesh and hinged with carved human bones. I know now these creatures to be ghouls, but there seemed more to them than what I had been told by the monk's and priests of Candlekeep. This book, The Charnel Text- The Ghoul's Manuscript, was written in a scrawl hard to make out but I was able to. This book also contained information about the ghouls and their secret cult, but this book (unlike the other) was written by ghoul's themselves, or (and it seemed more so) at least by one more familiar and empathetic with them.

    It contained some of the deeper secrets of the Ghouls and their origins, history and belief, as well as detailed descriptions of their worship of Mordiggian.
    A few of the sections within were as follows:
    * "The Beginning of Days" - the Ghoul "creation myth", describing their fall from grace in the Garden of Midian. A vast graveyard full of all the corpses of all the humans which have ever lived for the Ghouls to gnaw upon, lit only by the moon, which is forever locked in a single phase, its fullest.

    This Midian, according to the cult, is a future paradise to be found on Earth when the Stars are Right and the great dragon of old rises up from its grave and the spells of the cult of Mordiggian subdue humanity and overthrow the hated Sun.
    *The nature and worship of Mordiggian
    *A section that serves as a sort of "sacred cook book" for the preparation of the dead for consumption, including the ideal conditions, times, and places for performing the ghouls' elaborate ceremonial feasts.

    It appeared that this cult of ghouls serving Mordiggian was unconcerned with the living, preferring the dead to dine upon. Ghouls had tunnels through the ground that led to many a place and graveyard. That is how they traveled.
    After reading I was given a dark purple robe and led to a larger chamber where I saw an altar upon which rested one of the scribes, a girl I knew had died and was buried recently. I was not told why she died but just that she did. Three of the ghouls, dressed in purple with silver deaths head masks had prepared her, carefully, almost beautifully. They began chanting in that strange meeping like language. When they finished it seemed they were waiting for something.

    A colossal shadow appeared that was not wrought by anything in the room. It filled the portals from side to side, it towered above the lintel – and then, swiftly, it became more than a shadow: it was a bulk of darkness, black and opaque, that somehow blinded the eyes with a strange dazzlement. It seemed to suck the flame from the urns that lit the room and fill the chamber with a chill of utter death and voidness. Its form was that of a worm-shapen column, huge as a dragon, its further coils still issuing from the gloom of the corridor; but it changed from moment to moment, swirling and spinning as if alive with the vortical energies of dark aeons. Briefly it took the semblance of some demoniac giant with eyeless head and limbless body; and then, leaping and spreading like smoky fire, it swept into the chamber. (CAS).

    It first came closer to me, I felt frozen to the spot, unable to move. I could see into that great dark void of a mouth, could smell the thick heady aroma of death. This was Mordiggian, and he, it, seemed to be considering me. I inhaled deeply, filling my lungs, I felt death begin to take me, my consciousness ebbing away, but then of a sudden the blackness whipped out at me, engulfing me, enfusing me with a strange energy. Then, just as suddenly it turned it's attention to the altar.
    I saw the blackness grow and wax with the towering of a fed flame as it closed about the dead girl; I saw it gleam with eddying hues of somber iris, like the spectrum of a sable sun. For an instant, I heard a soft and flame-like murmuring. Then, quickly and terribly, the thing ebbed from the room. The girl was gone, as if she had dissolved like a phantom on the air. Borne on a sudden gust of strangely mingled heat and cold, there came an acrid odor, such as would rise from a burnt-out funeral pyre (CAS).

    The ghoul that had led me there opened his arms and lightly embraced me.

    In a heavily accented voice it spoke softly into my ear. "Welcome brother, you have done asss I thought you would and sssurvived the reckoning. You have been chosssen by the Great One to become one of ussss. Our lord commandsss usss to bring him the dead ssso that they may be reabsssorbed into the great fold, one of the oldessst and most primal of esssssences that isss, death itssself. The living do not concern usss but their death doesss. If any get in your way, for he demandsss all deathsss, treat them as our lord doesss, and consssume them ssso that they to may not go to wassste. You ssshall be rewarded with power brother, ussse it to honor Mordiggian. You ssshall notice 'The Change' in yourssself, embrace it, sssavor it, and you alssso ssshall be undying. Watch for our kind, sssome are more primal, and do more to asssiting the change of thossse living into thossse dead. Teach them if you can of our waysss but they are part of the fold none the lesssss. Not all will accept you. Beware the hunger, feed it, but try not to let it consssume your every waking thought. Not all that are chosssen keep their sssanity."
    He led me back into my room and my mind drifted off into darkness again.

    I am awake now. I can hear one of the scribes entering my room. He seems startled when he looks at me. "Ga-ga Gorion says you are to la-leave Candlekeep at once, here is some gold to outfit yourself as best you c-can at Winthrop's. Meet him at the steps of the library when you are d-done."
    I get up and notice a robe of purple on the end of my bed. The same as in my... not a dream then, it was real. I can still smell the scent of Mordiggian, that sickly sweet aroma that engulfed me.
    I went to the small mirror by my washstand. What I see is pleasing and a sort of shock at the same time. My skin feels tough, looks pale, cadaverous in appearance. All of my hair has fallen out and my eyes seem a little sensitive to the light and larger than before. I rush to my bookshelf but can find no door there, not any longer. I press my face up against it and listen.

    Nothing, the way is closed.
    My skin, it's happening, finally. I can feel the change as promised and it both looks and feels exquisite. I was born for this, as a servant and chosen of Mordiggian. I must know more of my mother and find out who my father was, and if he is still alive. Maybe he knew of the same things I do now.
    As I sat back down on the bed for a moment to ponder things before heading to Wintrhop's, I noticed a peculiar odor left by the scribe as he quickly turned and left the room. It was still in the air, the flesh of the living. It made my tongue tingle for just a second and put a surprisingly comfortable image in my mind. The the odor, however, was unusual in some way.
    I dressed myself in the robe and prepared to leave my room. On the bookshelf I saw the book from below, 'The Ghoul's Manuscript', left for me to take. I got a few other things as well as the book from the library, 'Cultes des Goules'. I don't think it would be missed. It is time to leave Candlekeep, at last. I must prepare myself for my journey as well as I can. I have a slight headache, like spiders are crawling around in my head and building a web, changing the landscape in there. Hopefully it will pass soon. And also, maybe the reason my head hurts is I feel, something, I'm not sure...hungry maybe.

    Leaving my room I think now I know what it is about that odor lingering from the scribes scent that is off.
    It smells... imperfect.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 26
    2. Zaghoul - Leaving Candlekeep - Life on the run

    As I left my room, I got looks of surprise from everyone I passed. I could see the scribes whispering to each other as I headed down the steps to the library door. Some even put their robes over their nose as if they noticed a foul odor in the air, like happening upon an animal dead in the road, laying in the summer sun. I suppose it was to be expected given the change that was occurring in me (and my robes). Was it a weak constitution, fear of death, or perhaps just fear of the unknown in their sheltered life within the walls of Candlekeep?

    The sun was bright out, more so than ever and it beat down upon me like the blacksmith's hammer upon his anvil. I pulled the hood of my robe up over my head. As I got to Witnthrop's I was approached by a young girl and a man. She thrust an old brass lamp into my hands as they passed saying that she needed it no longer and had another. They did not stay long enough for me to question them further so I put it in my pack with my other things.
    Winthrop was in his usual joking mood which I never really 'got'. I told him I was to be leaving and wanted a little breakfast before I left. I got several throwing knives and a dagger for my journey to 'wherever'. Winthrop did not have much food to choose from so I got my usual bowl of gruel, a little cheese, and some bread. It smelled different than I remember, like it had gone bad or something. I forced myself to eat it though as I would need to keep my strength up for the journey. Halfway through I started feeling strange, my stomach was grumbling and I started to break out in a sweat. Before I knew it I was running for the door and threw it all up just as I got outside. I felt a little better afterwards. This change is coming faster than I thought.
    I made my way round the place to say a few goodbyes but even as I was doing so it felt strange. To be honest with myself I didn't care if I saw any of them again or not. My attention was still focused on last nights meeting with the ghouls and my acceptance by Mordiggian. How could anything living compete with that?
    When I entered the priest's quarters to say my half hearted attempt at what would pass for a goodbye I was approached by a man that wanted me dead. I had no choice but to defend myself. My death was not his for the taking. I was attacked yet again on the other side of the keep. Somebody most definitely wanted my head. Today would not be that day though.

    My taste buds tingled after their deaths and I thought again of what I had been told down below by the ghoul cultists. Now I know it is the hunger the ghoul spoke of. The monks found me before I had the chance to think more on it. They said they would take care of it and that I should go to Gorion and leave now.
    Just before getting to Gorion, I met Camryn, one of the scribes that had also been kind to me over the years. He wanted me to keep a lookout for an old love of his of some 25 years ago. He gave me a special bag to keep all the books I might want to keep with me. The bag was special as It held more than it looked. To his credit, while still giving me a strange look, the elf did not seem frightened of my new appearance.

    Gorion and I left, and as we did he said he would explain why later. He also mentioned to go to the Friendly Arm Inn if we became separated for some reason, and to speak to to friends of his, Jaheira and Khalid. Become separated? He is definitely the least forthcoming with information of anyone I have ever met in my entire life in Candlekeep. Between that, my parents history, and his unwillingness to help my interest in the necromantic arts, he has been less of a foster father and more of a keeper. I suppose it could have been worse though, it was my access to Candlekeep that opened my eyes to Mordiggian and my path to transform my body to become more like the ghouls I met. If not for Gorion I do not know what would have happened to me.

    By the time we were leaving and on the road out of Candlekeep it was getting dark out. We were traveling cross country as Gorion had opted to stay off the road. AS we came upon the old stone circle east of the Keep we were approached by a rather dangerous and outlandish group of figures.

    A man in menacing looking armor flanked by huge ogres and archers seem to come up on us from out of nowhere.

    They demanded that Gorion hand me over to them, to which Gorion replied that he would never do so. As this was not the answer they were looking for an archer opened fire with his bow on me and the rest, including a woman that came into view near the rear began casting a spell. As I was being hit by arrows, when Gorion said to run I did, as fast as I could. I could hear the fight going on behind me as Gorion was giving them the full treatment of his skill as a mage with lightning, fire, and whatever he had at his disposal. It was not long before I heard his scream, signalling his death. I also thought I caught the rather triumphant bellowing laughter of the large man in armor.

    I hid until morning light, and though it was uncomfortable to my eyes I decided to return to Candlekeep and let them know what happened, perhaps they would be willing to make an exception to the rules of entry. Along the way I met Imoen, who had snuck out of the keep unawares to the gatekeeper. She insisted on coming with me. I think she puts more value in our relationship than I do, especially now.
    I was not really surprised the gatekeeper did not let me back in, but was over the fact that he would have let Imoen back in if she had wanted. She declined the offer and unfortunately kept tagging along with me. At least the keeper gave me a little gold for my journey to the Friendly Arm Inn. I would not forget the refusal to let me back in though.
    We stopped after a little bit for a rest and as we did I looked at brass lamp the young girl had given me. As I started to rub at some of the smudges on it smoke issued forth and a woman appeared. Her name was Jini and was a dijinn that had been trapped in the lamp long ago by a necromancer. She told me the lamp was cursed and I was stuck with her for now. So be it, I would have to deal with that later.

    I wanted to get back to the stone circle and see what was left of Gorion, and to prepare him for what awaited his body by those below. We carefully eyed the circle and when it seemed none of the killers were still around approached the circle. Gorion was indeed dead, cut almost clean in half by the armored figure.
    I built a small stone cairn to place his body beneath.

    I could feel something, the hunger, but it was tinged with both a kind of respect and loss at the same time. He might not have been the most forthcoming in my growing up, not the most helpful with my magic studies, but he was still part of the reason I had learned of what I did, because of where I grew up. Now that was gone. After building the cairn I asked Imoen give me some time alone with Gorion. I took both Gorion's dagger, his belt he wore when it was cold, and a letter I found, written and signed only by someone named E. It spoke of Kahlid and Jaheira as possible help. I wondered though if it made sense to go there as the killers might have seen the letter as well. I would go regardless as I saw not much in the way of choices at the moment.
    I then thought of Mordiggian and asked only if the special ghouls of which I was now a part of would be the ones to take him away from there when and if ghouls came to dine. As for what happened next I did without hesitation but did so as if looking at myself from the outside. As Gorion was already cut nearly half in two, I reverently sliced off a small piece of flesh from both Gorion's heart and his liver, immediately swallowing them. I felt a lessening of the hunger within me, but also, a sense that Gorion, at least in some form, would be with me forever. It instinctively felt the right thing to do.
    I placed him under the cairn, and started walking away, not looking back. Imoen quickly caught up with me and we headed through the woods in the same direction Gorion and I had been traveling. Hopefully we would reach the Inn soon.

    Imoen and I were accosted on the way by some ol man asking about the state of my mind. None of his business so I quickly excused myself and we continued on. At the next crossroads we were attacked by a wolf and a mad looking gibberling, and rather than risk fighting we headed quickly south until we quickly lost them, hiding out in a carvan that looked to have been recently attacked. All were dead but one lil halfling was still living. He wanted one last smoke on a pipe so I lent him mine. He seemed greatful and gave me his bag of letters he was delivering around the Sword Coast. I took it thinking there might be something of interest to me. He did not last much longer, but I stayed with him until he died. I did not seem to feel the 'hunger' this time. Maybe because he wasn't human. I don't know. Anyway, I just left him there for the buzzards (or perhaps a ghoul) to dine upon. Seemed a natural enough thought.

    Imoen and I kept heading east of the caravan, not wanting to run into the wolves again. It turned out not to be the wisest choice as we ran into a huge ogre on the way, as we started to head north again to the Inn.
    We managed to put him down though. They are not the fastest on their feet and I was getting pretty good with my throwing knives.

    We made the Inn and I decided to wait til darkness to enter as it might be easier to hide from anymore assassins waiting. I met a warrior names Ishlilka at the entrance, half- orcish by the look of her and strong.
    She was a mage hunter, something I was not the most comfortable with but might be useful to have on my side. It was a good thing I ran into as another assassin was indeed waiting for me on the steps up to the Inn.
    Ish proved her worth in gold, esp. since the man was a mage.

    I met with Khalid and Jaheira but decided not to have them travel with me, at least not for the moment. Jaheira was not the most polite as she impolitely compared me to Gorion. They mentioned something I was already hearing rumors of, troubles in down south in Nashkel. Sounded like a fine enough destination for the time as there were far to many assassins for my liking around here.
    I also ran into a rather rude dwarf as well, but I suppose that with the changes occurring in me I would just have to expect that. I am beginning not to care as much now what others may think of me.

    We made it down to Beregost, the first stop before Nashkel with no problems. I learned a bit more of the goings on in the area from folks that were willing to speak to me, as well as the mayor/priest at the local temple. On a whim I bought a scroll that reversed stone back into flesh. That came in handy when exploring the area I came upon a petrified woman. Wanting information I tried the scroll out. She had been attacked by basilisks to the east and hit by their stoney gaze. A place to investigate in the future, as well as the Firewine Ruins and Ulcaster School I had heard about.

    As we entered Nashkel a man cried out by the river, dying from poison apparently from someone named Seniyad. He had quite a few herbs I took after he died that looked to be useful in the future.
    Next to the town a faire was going on and it was there that I decided to part ways with Imoen. She was getting suspicious of me, both of the changes in me and the meetings I had been having with Jini, who stopped time when we conversed.
    Ish and I went back into town and low and behold another assassin attacked me at the inn. This time however did not go well at all. She cast a spell that held Ish dead in her tracks. I kept draining the assassins life force but could not save Ish. The assassin killed her right there in the inn. My powers depleted, I took off outside where the guards helped to finish her off.

    Not sure what to do with Ish I took her around back of the inn for time being, and left her in a small copse of trees,as no one else seemed willing to do anything with her. I was certainly not going to have her raised from the dead by the local priest. The ghouls or nature itself would take care of her well enough. I checked out the local temple for information and found that two ghosts had been seen for many years in the area No one seemed brave enough to do anything about them, or just didn't care, one. There was also a young mother there mourning the loss of her daughter, who had been taken from her grave. I did not say anything, figuring it had probably been ghouls that took her to dine upon after her death. Oublek the man in charge of bounties gave me a few ideas as to how I could earn some money.

    I did find the two ghosts. They turned out to be lovers killed in the area that had such an attachment to the area and each other that they never left. It was a simple matter to reunite them and send them on to wherever ghosts go after leaving the lands of the living.

    After another attack by an assassin I decided it was time that I maybe try to arm myself with a little more in the way of magic by visiting the Conjurer I had heard of west of Beregost, Thalantyr. I made it without incident and he did indeed have some items of interest. I bought a wand that caused fear in others as well as a scroll by which I could summon a familiar to help me in my travels. Heading back to the south again I happened upon a small deserted cave. It was here that i cast my spell and asked for a familiar to join me. A little white rabbit appeared at the entrance to the cave. Smarter and more magical than a normal rabbit he could also communicate with me. Strangely enough he was quite comfortable with me and the changes that were taking place, but then again he was not a normal looking rabbit.

    Maybe he was a special gift, I don't know. When I asked he said his name was Inle. In Lapine, the language of intelligent rabbits, it meant moon, but also death. A fitting companion and I cannot complain. We were attacked right afterward by a hobgoblin, and I found they Inle did not much care for them.

    I spent the day in the cave, it was quite comfortable, and well enough off the road to be fairly private. That night I had a dream about Gorion, and two paths I might choose. As I was happy with the path I had taken so far, in Mordiggian, I chose not to follow the pull from the other path. It felt like something was angry, trying to choose for me, but I had already chosen.

    I had another dream after that, involving Jini and a hooded man that seemed to be testing me for something. Turns out Jini really was in the dream after all. I do not know who he was.

    Back in Beregost, I decided to take up a gnome's offer I had met back at the FAI, and clean some spiders out of her house. Hopefully I would be rewarded for such a task. My fear wand helped quite a bit and again, I found something else Inle did not care for, huge spiders.

    Not quite sure where to head next, not being particularly interested in the Naskel at the moment after that assassin, I headed north again, up past the FAI. I met a lady in a house by the river that had a problem with her dead husband. Turned out he was a zombie that had paid a necromancer to raise him after his death so he could, by contract, make his wife stay at his house. This was against the ways of Mordiggian, at least for zombies to hang around indefinitely, so I destroyed him. She gave me some gold for thanks. Outside of her house some fishermen were gathered and asked if I would kill a priestess of Umberlee for them. I only said I would look into it and traveled north in search of her.
    I found her, just a girl, Tenya, but when I questioned her she attacked me without provocation. I drained part of her life as Inle bit her in the backside from where he had been hiding.

    She was more open to discussion after that, saying that the fishermen had stolen her bowl and had been taking way too much from the seas. I went back and confronted them, not happy about their deception. I demanded the bowl back and returnrd to Tenya. She was thankful and I asked her to join me for a time, as I was curious about her powers. Some huge insect like creature attacked us on the way but we put it down, Tenya burning it with her sea magic.
    When we got to Ulgoth's Beard a boy I talked to did not think much of heroes, so when asked, did not give me much information about the town (kobold abuser?- Id never even seen a kobold).

    The inn had some nice items for sale but I had not the gold at the time. I left Tenya there for a time and explored the area. At a farm not far off I found it to be overrun by zombies, with no apparent master in sight. Inle and I destroyed them all and left them for the ghouls to reclaim as was appropriate. Inle does not care for the mindless zombies escaping their deaths either.

    My change was progressing even further now. I could see in the dark now, as well as feel a change in my metabolism. My need for sleep lessened a little as well.
    I invited Tenya to travel back down to Nashkel with me. It was during this trip that I learned how to do something new. We were attacked by a large group of hobgoblins. After Tenya killed the first and rushed to the others (fearless she is), I concentrated on the dead hobgoblin. I asked the skeleton within to breakout from it's now dead flesh and assist me in killing the others that were trying to kill me. I was quite pleased with myself. Afterwards, I stayed until the magic that I had used left it, letting it fall back to the ground. My cult does not approve of leaving mindless undead walking around. There bodies belong to the Great One, Mordiggian.

    We got back to the faire at Nashkel where I dropped Tenya off. I asked her to stay put for the time being and she agreed with HER plan to stay put. A handful that child, but powerful.
    Jini introduced me to a lilttle will-wisp she had been watching over in her lamp (she invited me in). Fay was her name and she was trying to better herself by turning away from her kind's habit of leading people to their deaths in swamps and such. Another helper I thought, and one resistant to the effect of magic herself.

    I decided to hunt down the criminal Bassilus that I had heard about near Beregost. He had been amassing an army of mindless undead and I needed to have a talk with him regarding his methods and reasons for such a thing. He was depriving Mordiggian his due.
    When I found him it was obvious that he was a bit disturbed. While I tried talking to him he only attacked me. Unfortunate for him he focused his magic on bright Fay and not me. While I drained his life she kept him busy. He fell, and after that, I commanded his skeleton to break free of it's flesh and help Inle and I send the rest of the dead folk back to the ground to feed the faithful below.

    After finding he was a worshiper of Cyric, and not Mordiggian, I felt even more satisfied with doing away with him and receiving a nice reward, just for doing what I thought was proper in that case.
    Heading back to the area where I met the wife with the zombie for a husband, I explored a cave that held more of the insect like ankhegs, as I now know them to be from my time spent with Tenya. I had to kill a few to find my way out again.

    My powers were growing.
    When I got back to Nashkel I felt quite different. I really had not eaten in quite a while, and the 'hunger' was now stronger than ever before. Somehow I had kept my strength up though, I suppose it was the changes occurring in me. But I felt the need.
    I traveled east, away from the population. Some fool ran screaming up to me. He handed me a dagger, cursed he thought it was and he was hunted by something that wanted it back. A little eest of there I came upon a cave, and within was something quite interesting. A zombie-like figure that wanted his dagger back, having been killed by one known as Alatos. As he had been driven to his state of zombification out of the need for revenge I was not quite sure where the power came from. Regardless I let him have the dagger back and he collapsed into dust.

    I rested there for a time and headed back out into the night to explore the area. It would figure, given that it had been a few days since the last assassin had attacked me I would run into four more. They were not prepared for me, or Fay, whom they seemed to think more of a danger. I sent a cloud of vapor at them that had the sweet smell of death upon it, watching them wretch their guts out as I fired a blast of fear at them from my wand. I then drained their life and killed two more with my knives. One had run away, and for her I had special plans. I commanded the skeleton of one of her companions to rise and help me hunt her down. When we found her, she did not have the magic or the strength left to kill me after all, her original purpose. I let Inle finish her off, and he sank his fangs into her flesh.

    I saw Inle licking the blood from her afterwards, even taking a large chunk of flesh from her now dead corpse.

    It was night, I was alone, and I was hungry. Mordiggian be praised. This enemy would indeed not be divided up amongst the worms and the buzzards. And as for any ghouls in the area, this was mine.
    I felt satiated, strong, and also pleased that I had not let anyone stop my progress, and, for at least one that tried, did as the ghoul back in Candlekeep had said."Let the dead not be wasssted, and do asss Mordiggian would do, for all the dead belong to him, and we, and now you, ssserve as a vesssel to bring them to him".

    Afterward I returned to the others of that group, and indeed, as I watched from a hiding place, a ghoul had found them. As he did not seemed to have done the proper preparation I thought he must be one of the unenlightened, so I let him have his fill.
    From what I had read, feeding time would not have been the right time to approach him and try to tell him more of Mordiggian. They all knew of Mordiggian, and some even feared him, but as I had been told, not all were completely sane. He finally saw me watching but seemed to recognize something in me, and only eyed me from time to time as a cat would over it's food bowl.

    After he left, I dismissed the skeleton I had raised as was proper, gathered their belongings, and headed back to the faire to decide my next destination.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 26
    3. Zaghoul - the urge and transformation

    After I got back I hocked all the weapons and such I had found, and on a whim headed west, just as the sun was setting. I came upon what I thought was an abandoned lighthouse, but it turned out to be the base for a group of men raiding the ships in the area. They warned me of sirens in the area. Wanting to know more I traveled along the beach for a while, at night as usual. Inle took often traveled ahead of me, keeping to the shadows. Before long he came hopping back to me, having been alerted to something ahead. "Rah, sirenes ahead." I was learning more of Lapine. Rah meant 'leader'. As I approached them they immediately attacked me. It was fortunate I suppose that Thalantyr had made me a little ioun stone that protected me from their charms. I tried a new spell I had taught myself. I would fill a skull with negative energy and throw it, whereupon it shattered upon impact. They did not stand a chance. A little further on I met another sirine that did not attack straightaway. Sil was her name, the apparent leader in the area. I mentioned the sirenes down the beach that I had no choice but to kill. I first thought she would attack but she offered me a bargain. No more attacks on me if I made the men leave. Sounded fair.
    The raiders offered me money to kill the sirenes so they could gain access to a nearby treasure cave. I opted to take the sirenes side in hopes they would let me gain access to the cave.

    The raiders all died and SIl did indeed grant me access to the cave. Inside was some sort of golem made from body parts. It was a long business but I eventually put them all down. I found a book, and later, I would find that after reading it I felt a small change in myself.

    I headed south after that and came upon a ruined fortress. I did not attempt to climb the stairs up to it but opted to explore the area below. I ran into some goblins and their witch doctor/ They died to my skull bombs as well. Another book was found that upon reading I felt slightly different.

    It was at this time that I began to feel a little more confident and decided to explore the area around Beregost where the basilisks were reputed to be. At the fair I had bought a scroll for dealing with them and their stoney gazes.
    As I approached the area where I thought they were, I happened upon a ghoul. He seemed to recognize something in me and did not attack. Korax his name was.

    He agreed to help me explore the area. I was curious to see if he was immune to the gaze of the basilisks. He was indeed and all seemed bent on killing us.

    Some fool gnome had been training them as pets. How I do not know. Korax was indeed helpful and protected me quite effectively. I began to ask him what he thought of Mordiggian as he seemed in better control of his hunger than any ghoul I had met since leaving Candlekeep. He knew of Mordiggian and he himself had met the ghoul's below in purple. The more we talked though I could tell his hunger was getting the better of him. He finally snapped as we were attacked by a pompous group of travelers in the same area. I sent a cloud of putrescine gas in their direction, followed by a blast from my wand that instilled fear. The horrified bunch was busy running around and being sick at the same time.

    Another blast from the wand and a skull about did them in.
    One however got away, wounded, but as he found me, Inle bite him in the back pretty badly, killing him.

    It was at this time Korax had tracked me down and despite all I said he intended to eat me. His mind was too far gone, consumed by the hunger during the fight with the travelers. So be it. I drained what energy I could from him first, so as he did not go to waste. It was then that Inle came up behind him, jumped up and tore the back of his neck open, dropping him.

    "Flay, Rah?". Inle asked (good food, leader?). An image began to form in my mind, along with a plan that seemed almost perfect in my long range goals. "No Inle, I have another use for my wayward brother Korax". I took my dagger and carefully removed one of Korax's arms, wrapping it up carefully and placing it in my pack. I built a cairn for him as I did Gorion. The brethren would come for him from below. He deserved the rituals of Mordiggian as his final send off, after all, he did try more than most ghoul's.

    Afterwards, as little Inle looked up at me I could see he was indeed hungry. All the fighting had left me hungry as well, and more and more, as of late, when I was hungry, I was really hungry. The changes in me were progressing to the next stage.
    "What about the Elil, Rah?" He asked. Yes Inle, the humans that dared stand against us.
    We left and headed back to the Faire, no longer hungry, either of us.

    I hocked the items I had gathered from the basilisks and the travelers and spoke to Tenya again. She mentioned that the bowl I had given her back from the fisherman could summon water elementals. She herself did not know how to use it but new someone in the area of Firewine that could. We did indeed find this 'witch' she spoke of but it turned out to be someone that disliked her and her mother. The witch attacked Tenya, killing her. As I was to find out, the woman turned out to have some special power protecting her, preventing me from killing her for the foul deed. I had to leave, loosing both Tenya and her bowl. People did not seem to live long around me.

    I traveled past Firewine afterwards, into the halfing village of Gullykin. Here I met Alora, a thief by trade but she seemed more interested in the mystery behind locked things more than gold itself. She made a comment about me that I found interesting but not surprising.

    We tracked down the source of the kobold problem one of the halflings had mentioned, an ogre mage and his human alley. They fell. She followed me back to the faire where I dropped her off.
    She might be useful in the future.

    I decided I needed a tent of my own at the faire since it had become a sort of base for me, so I started to ask around. I did indeed find one but some fool mage attacked me as I entered. He killed another mage in the tent just because I asked as to the availability of it.
    Inle did not much care for him.

    "Yes Inle"., I said. "Flay".
    We retired to 'our' tent and I read through more of the text on necromancy I had taken from Candlekeep, Cultes des Goules.The more I read the more I wanted to hasten the process of my change. In it I found, and was able, I thought, to do what was becoming hard to resist. Since I had taken Korax's arm the idea I had was consuming most of my thoughts. I needed to be clear headed in order to function at my best in the future.
    The time was now.

    Inle was especially intent on watching me. I told him of what I was about and he suggested something that made sense, "Fu Inle, Rah" ( After moonrise, my lord".)
    I gathered a few tools from Nashkel and the merchants at the Faire, then retired to my tent. I placed the arm of Korax within reach as I began to speak the words that had been forming in my mind. I was able to enter a trance of sorts and stop the flow of blood to my arm. The tent grew colder and the intoxicating scent of death filled my head. A purple glow surrounded the ghoul's arm in front of me. It was almost as if I could see myself as if I was another looking upon me from without. I felt power growing within me as I picked up the saw. This was it, part of the true test of the faithful of Mordiggian. I spoke the final words and began.

    I cannot remember much after I began sawing off my arm.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
  • ZaghoulZaghoul Member, Moderator Posts: 3,085
    edited March 26
    4. Zaghoul - wandering

    When I awoke I was lying on the floor of the tent with little Inle sitting on my chest, keeping watch over me. The sun was streaming in a little through the tent flap from the setting of the sun. I had been asleep for a while.
    I looked down at my arm, my new arm. I had successfully grafted Korax's arm onto me in place of my own.

    I did not see my old arm. Inle told me a visitor had come and devoured it, a ghoul, but had left me alone. One of the faithful then, as we all belong to Mordiggian in the end, each and every part of us.

    Inle told me he had been frightened, as he did not know if the ghoul would take him as well.
    "I think you are safe with me Inle, they know you are my assistant, my familiar."

    "But Rah, I saw the Black Rabbit cross the moon last night".

    Inle told me of the Black Rabbit, " He is the reaper of the rabbit world who takes rabbits away at their predestined times of death."
    I thought on this for a bit but I did not quite understand the implications as of yet. It sounded though as if this Black Rabbit was not unlike Mordiggian, not concerned with the living but only with the dead.
    I think like myself, chosen and accepted by Mordiggian, Inle was perhaps was chosen as well. Were they connected in some way? Was this how rabbits saw Mordiggian? I knew Mordiggian was old, one of the most primal beings in existence. Perhaps they were.
    I looked at my new arm and as I did, could feel the strength within it, now a part of me. It felt right, it felt good. My path was definitely set and there was no returning from it. I was pleased with my progress and growing power.

    We walked out into the dying light. I sniffed the air, deciding that it was time to explore a bit more. I headed back north, wanting to pay a visit to Gorion's resting place and check something. When we got there I removed a few rocks from the undisturbed cairn. I was right, he had been taken by the brethren, not a bone remained. Good. I headed east, in the light of the moon. I came upon two travelers, a halfling and a wild eyed man. Montaron and Xzar were their names. Both seemed interested in my travels and offered to keep me company if I in return helped them investigate the troubles to the south with the iron.

    As we were near the Cloakwood Forest I decided I would have a look there first. Deep and forbidding it looked, a place of mystery. Perhaps a key to the whereabouts of Midian could be found there. I remembered Jaheira and Khalid at the Friendly Arm Inn nearby. She could be a helpful guide in the woods. I met with them and this time agreed to take up their offer of 'watching over' me.

    Ettercaps, spiders, and wyverns were all over the forest.

    There were druids as well and we were eventually approached by one named Seniyad, the same I figured that the poisoned man in Nashkel with the herbs mentioned. This Seniyad knew Jaheira as well, and tasked her with the rescue of two of their kind that had tried to infiltrate a group of Shadow Druids. They had been recognized as spies and were due to be sacrificed soon. I really was not concerned with these sacrifices but the Shadow Druids seemed to have an interesting take on humanity and civilization. I wanted to know more of them and told Jaheira I would 'help'.
    On the way through the forest we were attacked by ettercaps that had set a trap. Khalid rushed forward and was killed before it was all done and the ettercaps lay dead. Jaheira was determined to continue on.

    She and Xzar had an interesting discussion where I heard him mention Death's Master.

    Did he know Of Mordiggian? Regardless, as a necromancer and anatomist, I thought perhaps I could learn something from him. He had seen my arm and thought it fine piece of work. Yes, I think I could learn something, although his sanity was somewhat lacking. Montaron did not seem to care one way or another about anything at all but seemed determined in the mission for their employers ( Xzar had confided to me they were the Zhentarim).

    We came upon the druids as they were preparing their sacrifice. Before I could ask them more of their beliefs Jaheira attacked them, forcing the rest of us to defend ourselves.
    We prevailed and the man they held told us his fellow druid was held at the Great Tree of the Shadow Druids. We found our way there and again, because of Jaheira I was not able to talk to them. She was determined to exterminate them all. I was growing tired of that. I wanted to talk to at least one without a fight ensuing.
    We had to slay them all unfortunately, but Jaheira was satisfied to release the other druid. I decided to leave the Cloakwood for now and return to Nashkel in order to keep Monty and Xzar in a helpful mood. On the way there we were ambushed by a large group of flinds. They attacked Jaheira first, as she had taken a dislike to Xzar, and had been a little off away from the rest of us.
    I decided that she could do as she wished, and that was to attack them all. I think perhaps she was quite distraught over Khalid's death.
    Xzar said to let her choose her own fate then. I agreed and we watched from a distance. She did not even call for help. Perhaps she wished to join Khalid. In the end she did. I left them both in a small cave near Beregost eventually, side by side. Perhaps it would attract an audience of ghouls. Indeed, one followed me to the cave, but unfortunately his sanity was lost and I had to put him down.

    In Beregost we had some interesting encounters. At an inn a farmer was badgering us about the right to be there. Monty took particular exception to him. He called the man a 'stinkin grub farmer', which did not go down to well. They wanted death, so I was content just to watch Monty and Xzar offer it to them.

    In that same inn, Fieldpost's, we also me a gnome by the name of Tiax. A bit off he was and a worshiper of Cyric. I offered to let him join us which he accepted. He talked a little too much of Cyric and how he wanted to rule the world for my liking. As we were leaving town we were drawn into a fight with some mages. They were after a woman that had approached us and asked for help. It really did not concern me but the mages thought it did and attacked us all. This woman was about as reckless as it gets. She summoned a great ball of fire right down onto the whole lot of us. It killed the ones after her but she killed herself in the process as well.

    Right after that happened Tiax started preaching to Xzar about the wonders of himself and Cyric He just would not shut up. It did not go down to well with Xzar, or me, and he attacked us for saying we did not care to hear that garbage any longer. We laid him to rest right there in the street. Let the ghouls take the little fool.

    We made it back to the faire safely after all of that. I hocked what we found letting Monty and Xzar have their pick. Monty turned out to be an accomplished pickpocket among other things so I asked him to take back all that we sold. It would be used to fund my explorations. As he seemed to be quite good with traps, I thought we would explore this Durlag's Tower I had heard about from several people. I also learned Xzar was leery of rabbits at that time. It seems he thought his mother was killed by one with a head like a dragon.

    He stayed clear of Inle though, I think he was a little scared of him even at certain times. Regardless, Inle kept away from him as well.

    We made it to Durlag's fine. The place was littered with traps so Monty did indeed come in handy. I had them help me clear a few traps in the upper section and basement whereupon I sent them back to Nashkel for a while. I wanted to be alone here, considering the number of ghouls about. I wanted to have the best chance possible to befriend another like Korax. The lower basement levels, however, were more dangerous than I thought. I left for the time being and headed back north to the town of Ulgoth's Beard. I had seen a few things the innkeep was offering for sale and thought they might help me in Durlag's.

    While I was there I had a rather interesting offer from a mage to retrieve an item of his from some magic island. I was curious and took him up on his offer. The place seemed to be a prison more than anything else, but I fought through the residents with the aid of shadows that I was now able to call upon, and retrieved the mage's cloak. It seemed everyone there tried to stand in my way rather than work with me.

    It was a profitable adventure.
    When I got back to Nashkel I had enough winter wolf hides and magical items from the residents of that Island to make a fortune. I had Thalantyr recharge a frost wand I had found to full capacity.
    I had Juoma the herbalist craft me a magical poisoned dagger that might aid me in my travels. It would cost me quite a bit and she would not guarantee how it would turn out, and after doing so it would drain her powers for quite some time. Apparently, luck played a very big part in the work she put into crafting it. She told me that it was her finest work ever and the chances of her ever doing it again were slim to none.

    On the way back to Durlag's I stopped to explore the old school of Ulcaster. It was indeed an interesting stop on the way to Durlag's. I met two ghosts (one friendly, that I retrieved an old book for), a sentient skeleton, and a vampiric wolf. I also met a man that was hunting another in the area. I did not get to know much of White, as he attacked one of the feral ghouls near the entrance when I told him not to. I decided that if he could best the ghoul he could travel with me. He did not, and I left him for the ghoul to dine upon.

    The other undead residents of the school opted for combat rather than discussion. It was their loss. I found I could halt them in their tracks, leaving them open to me returning them to death eternal. Mordiggian did not care for the corporeal dead ( the mindless undead in particular) that much except for his followers. That was the reason I was always careful not to let my skeleton helpers I often called upon linger after I left a place. They were a means only to protect me, and only for a short time. It was the shadows I could call upon that I came to rely on more and more.

    By this time I felt ready to return to Durlag's on my own.

    Post edited by Zaghoul on
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