Balance

Then and Now a LITTLE perspective Pt 1

THEN

17th of Patchwall 2:30am, Arbour-Portum, Damp Caves District

Icarus crawled through the tiny series of caves until he entered the musty workshop. The smell of steel, wood, and various chemicals assailed him as he entered. The room was cramped, and filled with materials and unnamed unknown inventions. In the corner, hanging over a cluttered workspace was a tiny old Clava. The little old Clava sniffed twice and spoke without looking

“Look who has decided to return… you’re in trouble I presume… I doubt you would make the trip for any other reason” the old Clava picked up a tool and began to fiddle with a small block of wood. Icarus took a breath to respond but let it out slowly, feeling guilty that the Old Clava was right. “Well, come over here, let’s have a look at you and see what troubles you have brought upon me today” Icarus waddled over to the desk and looked up at the Clava

“Hello Daedalus,” he said in a respectful tone. Deadalus snorted

“Don’t go ‘Hello Daedalusing me’ Mr… you leave for two full seasons and think Hello is the way to start?”

“I’m sorry…” Icarus interrupted “It’s just after Theseus fell… I guess, I didn’t know how to come back, I needed to follow through on his quest, I needed to finish things” The old Clava shook his head looking away from Icarus

“HIS quest Icarus, HIS… not yours, HE was a first born, HE was given a quest, you cannot complete that which does not belong to you; and with his death, his quest was lost”

“I can’t believe that, I was there, I heard the words from the Oracle, I found the Bellator Libra. I even found a real live Waylen… I can do this! I can save us all, I just need to be given some more time”

“Icarus, your hubris will be your undoing; You cannot…”

“I can… I have earned the Decoration of the Last Shade, the Orden of Santiago, the Medallion of Aerea and…”

“Achievements awarded by Clava Icarus, Clava…. many rightfully so, but a Clava’s achievements mean nothing to the fates… and you are not a chosen of the fates Icarus. Your brother was our last best hope. Now he is gone, the sooner you come to terms, the less heartache you will feel. The fates can be cruel when they turn.” The two shared a look, neither speaking, at long last the old Clava turned back to his tinkering and spoke “Clearly the universe has not finished teaching you this lesson, so what is it that you have come here today for?”

“The King has granted Arbor-Portum Hibernium this season.”

“Yes, I had heard, what of it”

“I cannot stay, I have the Bellator Libra and the Waylen here in the city, I must get them out prior to Hibernium”

“Yes, that makes sense, The King should authorize a skirmish to let you through”

“He will not, I am not cleared to go, and my house will not support me without the Kings direct word”

“and why is it that the King will not offer his word?”

“I am not privy to this information, but I have been told that he has considered it, and has stated that an exodus is not to be so”

“Icarus, has it been your experience that the King makes decisions lightly? Or without reasons?” Icarus looked up at his feet for a few moments before shaking his head no “… then can we not trust that the King has made a decision for the collective good, and that we perhaps need to abide by it?” Icarus continued his long stare at his feet, his wings fidgeted in agitation

“No, the Bellotar Libra and the Waylen need to make their own decisions, the King has not even greeted them, has not offered an audience. If they choose to stay so be it, but I will not allow it to be inflicted on them through ignorance”

“It is my experience Icarus, that a Waylen is rarely ignorant, especially when it comes to magics as powerful as Hibernium”

“Never the less Daedalus, I need to get them out of the city, and past the line. On top of that I have to get them out quietly… will you help me or not?” The old Clava placed the block he had been working with down and shook his head sadly

“Icarus, I am an educated professor, why will you not learn from me? Why will you not take advantage of the resources I offer you?”

“I am trying to learn from you, I need to know how to get out…”

“No Icarus, you come to me looking for answers, not for rational discourse… to think critically is what will aid you in the long run, giving you the answers only makes you more reliant on me”

“EEERRRGGGG! I don’t have time for this, please… no… wait… what are you doing?” he asked as he saw the old Clava move across the room and begin to wheel out a large chalk board “please don’t start with the chalk board”

“There is always time for rational thought Icarus; I am trying to help you, please take a moment and clear your mind” the younger Clava glared at his older counterpart for a long moment before sighing an accepting that this was the only way to achieve his mission. He closed his eyes in exasperation

“Ok, mind cleared, now what” Daedalus paused knowing he was being humored but holding to the patience of a teacher. He began making a crude diagram of the black board

“This is Arbor-Portum, what are the obstacles preventing you from leaving. Remember the rational mind acknowledges to most obvious first and works its way towards obscure” Icarus took a deep breath focusing and working the problem

“We would be seen by random Clava if we approached the perimeters, if we made it that far, the magic’s that protect the city would detect us moving through the Thorn Trees. After that there is an army of Avians out there”

“Good, good… so we cannot leave through conventional methods of flight or foot, correct?” Icarus nodded “What of the way you entered? Can you leave the same way?” Icarus furrowed his brows in thought for a long moment

“I don’t think so, it was very dangerous, and the little reading done so far implies we were very lucky” Daedalus nodded at this

“Good, good, we are making progress, and what is the old Clava adage about magic?”

“A Clava is always grateful for Waylen aid and magic, but a wise Clava never relies on it” the older Clava nodded

“So young Icarus, you cannot blast through the lines, you cannot magic yourself away, and you do not possess the magics to sneak past our sentinels… so what does that leave?”
There was a long silence as Icarus stared at the board thinking, again Daedalus held to his patience wrought of years of teaching young Clava

“You’re not thinking of the lower caves are you?” Icarus inquired

“Well… let’s take a look at that option…”

“Well… after the cave inn’s no one can fly though there, no one’s really sure if you can even get out…”

“So it would be lightly guarded at best” the old teacher stated

“That’s not much of an option Daedalus…”

“Defying the King rarely leaves one much in the way of options, besides, I am not advising you do this…” he stated as he began to wipe clean the board “… I am merely participating in a thought experiment. Obey your King Icarus, enjoy some much needed rest, see what the spring brings, that is the advice I offer that you so freely spurn” Icarus nodded and moved towards the door

“Thank you Daedalus” the Clava said as he left. The old Clava shook his head and muttered softly to himself

“You are welcome nephew, good luck”

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Dark Darklyness of Darkening

5th of Floodtime, 3:36pm, location unknown

The chrysalis pulsated and the unholy symphony crescendoed. Each instrument hitting a sharp or flat in perfect unison to create a paradox of discord. At a signal from the mighty conductor, the awaiting ghouls pulled the 13 babies from their cribs and slit their jugulars, cutting off their morbid cries that had created the background noise for this creature’s incubation. The blood drizzled and sputtered through the grated catwalk and landed on the pulsing gooey shell of the chrysalis. Next came the fantastical creatures. The egg of a baby gold dragon was cracked and poured over the unborn form; the horns of the captured sea unicorns were cut from their hosts, killing the near extinct creatures immediately. Their horns were then used to cut down young maidens, ones who had not yet experience love or the riches of life, again their blood was sucked into the horns and let drizzle upon the every faster beating and pulsating cocoon. The conductor increased his pace and the tempo shot forth as a shambling group of zombies pulled in a might bound Sphinx. The bearded creature struggled and surged at its bonds to no avail. Until it was brought forth and also sacrificed in unholy rituals to this thing of darkness. Hundreds were slaughtered to maintain a steady stream of blood, all innocent, all with so much hope or potential, all with some connection to the great Titan. At last as the hues of red, black, green and grey finished their finial pulse a clawed lizard hand ripped open its encasement. The huge slimy creature was born into murder, into discord and hatred and into chaos. It ripped its way from its bindings racing towards the flowing light of the captured fairies and hungrily devoured them, as a child might stuff popcorn into its mouth. The conductor cautiously approached his new creation

“Lord Talib has opened the rifts between planes, and brought you life on this world…” he said to the creature. It turned and hissed at conductor, but he did not shy away “You will serve our great father, and show him that his time was not wasted” the Lizard creature turned one of its bulbous yellow eyes taking in the Conductor while the other searched the room. “You are our weapon, and our future… your first task on this world shall be one of great consequence… YOU WILL KILL FLITT FARGAZER!” the beast stared at the conductor both eyes fixed on him “KILL FLITT FARGAZER!” the Conductor said again in near hysteria

“killllzzzzzz Fargazzzzzerzzzzzz” the creature hissed, its very first words of its exsistance

“YES!” the nearly mad Conductor screamed, breaking into diabolical laughter “MUHAHAHAHA! HA HA HA!”

“KILLLLLLZZZZZZZZ” the Creature hissed again

“MUHAHAHAHAHA!” the madman laughed on, his ritual had been a success

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Of Mice and Men

5th of Floodtime, 2:13pm, Cannon Deck, Champions Boot

“I suppose we should get to know each other a little Aury.” Thaden said he walked about her in kitten form, a small length of twine in his hand that he used to measure her for barding. “Like I know you, I can feel you but I don’t know much about you. Heck I have been crying for almost two days over the loss of Serenity, but I still don’t even know what that means… or who she was, or why everything that happened there was so important… but it felt life altering, and like it was the most important thing ever…”

“mew” was the response he got, he looked at her and raised an eyebrow

“and we will have to being lessons as well, start you with lessons in Mamelian… I am passable at best in Felus and Preatus, and I think Mamelian would suit you best in speaking with the others from my realm… if you have a knack for languages we could then try Waylan or Clavan, both would be suitable”

“meow” she said back and he nodded, knowing he was getting ahead of himself

“ok, back to point, I guess I saw some intense things about you, and since I am not finished the measurements yet, and you can’t yet speak in this form… I should begin by telling you about me”

“I suppose there are only four of us left now, I am one of the original ten apprentices of Guard Mouse Meagre Pickins. The others were Myself, Joseph Palmer, Cayley and Graham, Tander, Wilkin and Dalla, Clove, Garrow and Moria. To my knowledge, with Cayley and Graham now dead…” Aury felt an intense sadness radiate off Thaden, as if she had just lost Mandy or Flit, she could feel the pain, so fresh and the anger that welled below the surface at the wizard who had so needlessly killed his companions. “That only leaves myself, Joseph, Clove and Tander… that is not many, not enough to save the world anyhow…” the mouse looked down at his feet as he reached into his satchel, he put away the twine and pulled out a small brush, slowly he began to brush Aury’s fur the motions almost meditative as he focused on his task and told the story. “I had been held prisoner in Rootwallow for some time, it was almost two years ago when Meagre and his rebels, mostly the Clava, Silverwings, burst in and took it back from Shepards blasted Imperium. Meagre released us from our magical bounds and quickly began to reunite us with the weave. Moria had been my betroved, we were to be wed long before the dark uprising, but had never had the time… the life of a Guard Mouse is a life of service after all, I had decided not to wait longer, that the evening of the solstice we would be wed…” the brush came down harder as it fought a particularly stubborn snarl, the Waylen too far into his story to give it the proper attention, Aury winced but did not interrupt “Four hours before the wedding they attacked… do you know how many people Shepard brought? None, just him and his new mount, the Green Dragon Credivus… they melted Rootwallow, massive globes of acid rained from the sky sundering our once beautiful home into smoldering shambles. The brave clan Silverwing tried to fight back, but even the best among them was no match for Shepard’s command of the weave and the Dragons might. Moria and Dalla were slain that day, the acid that hit them was so thick there was nothing left of their bodies to bury. Had it not been for Meagre, he dragged me out of there, I doubt I would be there today.” The Waylen moved around to the other side of Aury and continued her brushing. “Garrow was the next to fall. He had been on a simple diplomatic mission to Windselm, trying to convince the Hedgies there that they need not submit to Shepard. The Hedgies betrayed him and the Oculas descended upon him, tearing him to pieces. Dalla died on a mission for Meagre, looking for another Weave Gem… she had found one, but it was well guarded by the Zemaya, and she was no match.” He put the brush away and began to nuzzle her head

“mew” she offered, but he either did not understand or chose to say nothing

“Wilkin and I were close, we had trained hard together, we both specialised in Ataru and thus spared often together; as such we were often sent on missions together. We were rescuing a captured Clavan Princess, a Moonwing, from the Imperium Capital, Redwall. It had gone sideways and our attempts ahd been discovered, she had been injured and was unable to fly, and so I carried her, while Wilkin covered us from behind… his skills in Djem So were admittedly superior to mine. We made it to court yard, when the Wyzals had cornered us in… and there he was Thrawn himself. It was a fight we could never have one, but Wilkin needed to try, and to his credit he took the wolverines eye before he was sundered and rendered in two. I barely made it out that night, the princess had died in the attempt.” He took a few long slow breaths before continuing “The Suzuki Druids are funneling power to Lord Shepard’s Imperium, they turn the dull beasts against us, and use their magic to hem us in and trap us. They also actively wipe the memories of the BIGS so that we are not remembered as a race… they work towards our genocide. Meagre sent Cayley, Graham and myself to find the Suzuki Druids and put a stop to it… we did not know where their grove was or where they were, we had only just started out really, when we were captured by the mage, and entrapped to be sold or killed… I cannot guess at his logic… that is when I met you dear Aury, and the others… I cannot go home until I find the druids and end their involvement in my war, I have no family left… and to be honest, you might be my only friend in the world… I am sorry for that, friends of mine usually have short lives.” He laughed a mirthless laugh to himself “But I swear to you Aury, I will do everything I can to protect you and help you along the way, I won’t let history repeat itself, and you won’t be another name on the list” he placed his forehead against the kittens sharing in the quiet moment before taking a few breaths and taking a step back.

“I suppose if I am to learn who you are, you will need to take your other form… at least until we can sort out some languages”

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The Five Once More

5th of Floodtime, 1:33pm, the Silver Mines, 10k outside of Amberdale, Kezrenad

Shaheed looked around the group once more, there were about fifteen of them here, another six keeping watch outside the mines, still after three days he was beginning to feel that this was another wild goose hunt.

“Shaheed, you make the men nervous when pace like this, sit, have some wine and take rest” his brother Taaj called out to him. He turned offering his brother a thin smile

“I worry Taaj, we have been here too long, our coffers run low, and I will not be able to pay the town to keep the mine closed for much longer… I don’t think we are making enough progress” as Shaheed spoke he back to pace, his words spilling forth faster and faster

“… Come brother… walk with me, let us take a walk and discuss our options while the men finish their break” Taaj interrupted… Shaheed looked hard at him, but could see he was right, the two marched down a long tunnel waiting a few moments before discussing their options

“You need to relax Shaheed… we are doing all we can…”

“no Taaj, you need to get a lot more stressed… we cannot fail in this task, this is your first command with the Company, they have invested a lot into your training and this mission. The success or failure of this mission will dictate your career for the rest of your life… I need you to get worried” Shaheed said, again beginning to speak faster and faster

“Shaheed… be reasonable…” he said stopping and leaning against the wall “We have been prudent in every decision we have systematically searched this entire place and… OH” he started in surprise as the stone he leaned on suddenly shifted and a large panel of wall slid open seamlessly.

“By the veiled merchant himself” Shaheed said making the symbol to ward against evil Taaj touched his broach that had been glowing dimly and had it increase the light is was projecting.

“This could be it” he said taking a step forward; as he did his brother grabbed him

“we should gather the men and go in together” Shaheed said warningly

“If the door closes we will never find that button again… I say we go, that is what we are here to do”

“Prudent decisions indeed” Shaheed snorted… “You stay here, keep the door open, I will hurry back and gather our men, then we will proceed as a group… agreed?”

“So be it” Taaj said smiling ruefully. Shaheed let out a sigh of contentment of a well liked plan, he straightened his attire and then quickly strode off back the way they came at a brisk walk ready to rally their men, if things went quickly perhaps they could be finished today, and he would not need to renew the mine for another three days.

Taaj waited in peace for several moments… looking into the plain small room, it had very little in it, aside from an alter in the centre of the room. After another minute or so, the door began to once again close… he leaned against it to hold it open but quickly found the door was much stronger then he… he pressed further open to wedge himself in the frame but found again that he risked being crushed… as the moments ticked down he made a decision and thrust himself into the room, the door closing with a gentle THUNK behind him.

“well… that happened” he mused to himself, wincing a little at how loud his voice was in the empty room. He searched around the doorway and found no obvious means of exit. That was annoying, perhaps the alter then. The alter was black and octagonal, it had an old writing etched into it, he had to squint to decipher it.

In the Long summer SHE must break the barrier of his steely Labyrinth. A false disagreement shall not happen and a conversation of convenience must take place in order to mend old rifts. When the time of the Forge is at risk SHE who mines will gather the materials with great sacrifice; and rest well at the side Dumathoin.

“Not to helpful, he said, fishing the notebook from his satchel and flipping to the prescribed page… the company had paid well for information and he had done his research well. Without much trouble, he began pressing the letters as required with his six most likely syphers… he got it on number three. The top of the alter turned and swirled opening up showcasing a ladder leading down a narrow tunnel into the alter. He looked back to the still sealed doorway… Shaheed would not be pleased with him going alone… but on the other hand, he had no method to exit, and his research did not indicate any trouble within the Alters. he straightened his back, he had been trained by OMARs, this was his mission to undertake, he would become linked with the infidels who had attacked the company, and he would use the link to hunt them down. When this was done, he and his family would be very well compensated for their troubles. He climbed down the ladder into the small room below.

There was a tapestry of Clan Nogrod and a small glassed off room that had a weapon stand and a bust, on the bust gleamed a small pair of goggles, on the stand was a dwarven miners pick. He pulled his jewelled dagger from his belt and shattered the glass, the stand rotted to nothing almost right away, but the goggles and pick seemed unhurt. Taaj al-Pour took a deep breath, he had been told that these items can affect the mind, he had been trained to resist such things, but still he worried, what if he was not good enough… what if he failed, he would be only a further black mark upon his family. He forced such thoughts aside, reached forward and quickly placed the goggle on his head, he bent down and scooped up the pick.

“I AM THE MINER”

5th of Floodtime, 1:33pm, The River Rhone, The Evermoist, Master Carpenters Quarters

Mandy was in her room, her stomach hurt, she was angry, she was unsure if maybe she was dying, she had been bleeding almost non stop for two days down… below… but couldn’t bring herself to go talk to Mr. Fargazer or Captain Alfirin…. She hated being on this ship, she wanted to be back on The Boot, Belinda would know what to do… but she also hated being away from Ms. Ouelette, Mr. Fargazer and Captain Alfirin…

THUNK

She punched the wall with anger, the winced in pain as she hurt her hand “GODS BE DAMNED!” she cursed to herself. She shook her hand to try and shake off the pain, it did little to help. She wiggled her fingers assure it was not broken when it happened

First an image, of a man with dark hair, he was kind of cute he had a silk blue shirt and a red sash around his waist, then a deep voice that sounded like rock being poured into a barrel… she could hear a ringing in her ears like the sound of a hammer striking an anvil

“THE FITH ONE HAS BEEN FOUND, THE MINER HAS ONCE AGAIN BEEN REBORN, THE WHEEL IS NOW SET IN MOTION ONCE MORE”

5th of Floodtime, 1:33pm, The River Rhone, The Evermoist, Cannon Deck

“Great jump Aury!” Thaden said as the kitten leapt from the back of a cannon across the deck landing neatly exactly where planned. The Waylen affectionally patted her head a few times before dismounted “Watch your head as you shift girl” he said reminding Aurellia that this deck was lower, she had smacked her head the first time she shifted, now she was better prepared. As she took her form back she took a moment to straighter her tunic and breeches and smiled at Thaden’s compliment

“I was thinking we could get some more distance if we fix the saddle, it’s not as tight as he could be, and the weight shift is throwing me off” she said to him. The Waylen scratched his chin nodding…

“Agreed… when we get to Lockland I want to have something crafted… I wanted to ask you about Barding as well… I would like get you some armor… at least leather, preferably chain if I can find the gold for it”

“Hmmm…” Aurellia said thinking about it, and how this could work with her shifting she opened her mouth to speak when it happened

First an image, of a man, he had elvish or fey blood to him, with dark skin, then a deep voice that sounded like rock being poured into a barrel… she could hear the sounds of doors being slammed and locked, a steady thudding in her head

“THE FITH ONE HAS BEEN FOUND, THE MINER HAS ONCE AGAIN BEEN REBORN, THE WHEEL IS NOW SET IN MOTION ONCE MORE”

5th of Floodtime, 1:33pm, The River Rhone, The Champions Boot, Belinda’s Quarters

“And so you can see, that’s how the ration matrix works for buying in large cities” Belinda finished up. Thalion was wowed, he knew she worked hard, he considered himself a bit of a budding merchant himself, but when it came to cargo moving, and feeding a crew and resupplying, he felt that Belinda had forgotten more about trade then he might ever learn. All at once he felt very intimidated and out of his depth

“Thank you Belinda, I’m not sure I can do this without you… I was wonderi….” Thalion trailed off as it happened

First an image, of a man, certainly a half elf… slight scruffy goatee, with clothing much to nice for how he kept his hair. Then a deep voice that sounded like rock being poured into a barrel… ze could hear the sounds of battle, of people crying out, of swords and spears being battered off ze shield and helm

“THE FITH ONE HAS BEEN FOUND, THE MINER HAS ONCE AGAIN BEEN REBORN, THE WHEEL IS NOW SET IN MOTION ONCE MORE”

5th of Floodtime, 1:33pm, The River Rhone, The Ever Moist, The Bridge

Flitt stared out into the river ahead, his course continued to cut back and forth, as their magic sails continued to cause them to outpace the Champions boot. He smiled, first mate on a ship, at war with Talib, a Phoenix about to rise from the dead… its been an exciting few days. He took a gulp from his wine skin, it was the festival of floods, how could he not imbibe a little… he dropped his skin it never reached his mouth when it happened

First an image, of a man, tall and slim, humanoid for sure, with brown eyes and a slight bead, he wore clothes of blue and brown, and had a beautiful scimitar on his belt. Then a deep voice that sounded like rock being poured into a barrel… he could hear the sounds of keys, keys unlocking doors, keys rattling on rings, keys being forged, keys being broken.

“THE FITH ONE HAS BEEN FOUND, THE MINER HAS ONCE AGAIN BEEN REBORN, THE WHEEL IS NOW SET IN MOTION ONCE MORE”

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The feelings

I never knew that the passion I felt for the very survival of my people, could be felt for a cat and goblin a mouse and frog my goddess. I need to find Mandy. I’m grieving for Versum. I will destroy every vampire in Lockland. I’m not supposed to feel this hard. I will keep them all safe957fb4726583f8eddc8d9df20568fd51--story-inspiration-writing-inspiration.jpg

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Revenge of the Horned Hangman Pt 2

3rd of Floodtime, 11:03am, the Confluence of Kezranad, Champions Boot.

Tar-di clutched the little mewing kitten as she huddled behind a stack of crates, in her lap she could she had the loaded pistol that Belinda had passed her when the First Mate had called that they would be boarded. She noted the brave men and women of the Champions Boot prepare, some actually seemed happy that it was coming for this, they loaded their weapons and crouched in anticipation as to what was to come. She looked down at the little ginger kitten again, it was odd, she could see the nearly blind little cat in front of her, but also could see deeper, see the spirit of Mandy crouched in there, but disabled by the body.

“I’m sorry Ms. Doyle… Mr.Fluffy said my magic was not reliable, that it didn’t come from Kelezandri and I should not use it… I would help you if I were allowed”

THUNK

The two ships scrapped sides with one another as grapples pulled them in, the sound of men and women screaming, of pistols blasting filled the air as the ships were boarded.

“mew, mew, meow” the kitten said pathetically

“I guess I could try…” Tar-Di replied as if she understood the kitten “I doubt I could change you back, but maybe I could change your form into something more able to defend us”

“MEW!” the kitten said excitedly, Tar-Di supposed during an invasion almost any form would be better than a kitten.

“Ok Ms. Doyle… we both need to focus on what would be better… gods I wish I were older, I wish I knew what I was doing” Tar-Di murmured as she began to focus and feel the energy and spells around Ms. Doyle.

“YAR!”

“AHHHHGGHH!”

BANG

The noise of battle kept jolting her away from her spell, still she tried to push forward… she felt a tingle, like she was nearly there when something broke her concentration

“Well what do we have here?” A gruff voice said, she looked up to see a man in a black and white striped shirt, he wore a red bandana and a brown best, in his hand he held a bloody scimitar “A Little piece of trim and a mangy cat” the man finished with a single HA to himself.

MandyKat_2.jpg

Tar-Di looked down, no longer was she holding a little nearly blind kitten, but a full grown ally cat, one that looked like it had seen its share of junkyard scrapes. The man reached down to grab Tar-Di by the hair and pull her out from her hiding spot, as he did the cat leapt into action

“RAAAOOOOOOWWWWWW” it cried as razor sharp claws extended from its hands, the feline leapt for the man’s face front claws cleanly connecting; it was however the rear claws that he needed to fear as they both raked across his throat slitting it open and spilling his life all over the cat and Tar-Di. The Cat leapt atop the barrels and then took off to head above decks

“Ms. Doyle! Wait!” Tar-Di called after the cat…still wiping the blood from her eyes “What have I done?” she asked herself

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Revenge of the Horned Hangman Pt 1

3rd of Floodtime, 10:45am, the Confluence of Kezranad, Champions Boot.

“Mr. Ironbraid, have Mr. Tyre hold his next shot, until they are with two hundred feet”

“Aye Captin” Thitmed responded and turned towards the deck “WILLHYM, DON’T YE FIRE ANOTHER SHOT UNTIL I BE SAYIN’ SO!” he turned to another crew “CEILIA, GET UP THA’ MAST WITH MANDY AND HELP HER FIX THA’ BOOM, WE’LL BE NEEDIN’ IT WHEN WE COME ABOUT!”

“Aye Sir” The two echoed as Ceilia ran towards the mast that Mandy was already preciously dangling from. The slight women was up there in no time

“How come’s it Master Carpenter” Ceilia asked ready and eager. Mandy looked at her a little annoyed, she was a good fifty feet above the deck hanging upside down while she tried to get this mangled hinge to come free, all while this ridiculas pirate ship continued to harry them. Six days of hiding and weaving through the island chains and shallows to shake the Roebuck, finally the ship turns and heads back up river, and when they come out, Boom, they are met by this ship “The Horned Hangman’s Revenge” no chit chat, no parley, just opens up all cannons. Now here they were sails damaged, over ballast, and low on supplies. Mandy gritted her teeth, and tugged once more

CACHUNK

The piece finally came free… the poor girl almost lost her grip and fell when it did. Catching her breath she smiled to Ceilia.

“OK, now we are in business… we just need to pry off that old hinge, screw in the new hinge with this piece here, and bang the boom back into place… here pass me that prybar” Mandy said as she readjusted herself into a sitting position. Ceilia grabbed the prybar from the tool belt hanging on the hook and passed it to the girl. With a few efforts the old hinge began to give way “Got it” she smiled as Ceilia stabilised her

“HOLD ON” they both her Thitmed boom, both women grabbed the mast and covered as best they can

BOOM
BOOM
BOOM

Three cannon blasts rocketed at the ship as the entire ship seemed to careen to port side.

SPLASH SPLASH

SWISH

Two of the cannon balls missed completely, the third tore through the rigging before is launched out to sea. Mandy cursed, she would need to run new ropes now as well… that was certainly a job for Mr. Fargazer… he was far better at hopping along the Mast than she was. She ship righted itself, and it looked like they would have a minute or so before the next pass

“OK,” The Master Carpenter said to Celia “Get the new hinge plate on here, then screw in the boom like so…” she showed how the piece was supposed to fit together “I’ll climb over there and start pulling the rigging ropes free to run new lines… all good?” Ceilia looked over to the tool kit to fish out the tools she need

“You got it boss” she said as she dug through Mandy’s bag

“Meow” Ceilia wasn’t sure what she heard, but she had the tools and was turning back

“What was that Mandy? WOAH!” she looked back and Mandy was gone, replaced by a small ginger Kitten, who sat on the mast and cocked its head to the side offering nothing but a tiny

“mew?” Ceilia’s heart almost melted at how incredibly cute the little kitten was, before the seriousness of what happened dawned on her. She turned her head and called back to the bridge

Mandykat.jpg

“THEY HAVE A WIZARD! THEY HAVE A WIZARD… MANDY’s BEEN POLYMORPHED!” she yelled

“GODS BE DAMNED!” was the response from the bridge before she heard Thitmed yelling to Baker to ‘Mark the Wizard’ Ceilia looked back at her job… the little kitten stared at her and mewed again

“meow, mew mew, meow” Ceilia shrugged at the little cat

“Sorry Mandy, I don’t speak kitten, I’m sure the Captain can get you sorted when we’re through this but… OW!” Ceilia pulled her hand back as the little kitten nipped her, she could see Mandy’s hazel eyes on the ginger cat as it mewed again, this time pointing with its paws

“Meow, mew mew, Meow” it repeated, pointing at the hinge plate

“You want me to finish working on the boom?” Ceilia asked. The kitten offered her a gentle purr in response. Ceilia smiled at the situation, “Aye Aye, Master Kitten” she said getting to work, if the Cat found her joke funny, it did not show it.

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Wine Time Pt 2

2nd of Floodtime, 383 ONT 2:41pm, Lyithalus Vineyard, the Ilse of Amyenhone, Novarthia, Elven Court

Onus Thesalour looked hard at the Lady Alfirin, they were arguing in circles and he had just about had enough of it. “Nueleth, please listen;” he implored a final time “They will come back, there will be more of them, if you want this place protected, you will need to find more guards in the immediate, and lodge a complaint with the Sons of Treefall through the Seeker in Highport. I doubt I can stop this again, and frankly I am not keen to try” the elven women glowered at him, she was unhappy when she couldn’t work out a quick solution to a problem. She opened her mouth to speak but the door to the room bust open before she could “Master Thesalour… Goblin Raiders on the Southern Hills, they have torches and are heading for the red brewery!” a young Halfling women exclained, she seemed out of breath and red cheeked. Thesalour jumped to his feet scooping up his bow as the girl continued “Ms. Roslyn is sending the Fairbanks to get a bucket bridage ready, she had the Proudfeet getting shovels and hoes to ward them off!” “Fool girl” Thesalour swore as he dashed out the door and bolted for the southern fields “Goblins in the Court?” Neuleth asked confused, but the Halfling girl was already gone, hot on the heels of Ser Thesalour
“We should have no troubles today” Folwin Jocan assured his men. He had seven elves escorted Omar Tadnius across the northern roadway. “Our summoned will have done his piece by now, and the knight will be busy on the far side of the vineyard, even if we are spotted he won’t have time to respond… but just to be safe, let us cut around the Northern Ridge and work are way to the villa from there, I would prefer to kill less folk if possible” there was a general mumble of assent from the elves as they continued on their course **********************************************************************

Krieger stood outside the little cottage and cocked his head to the side… he wasn’t sure if he liked the way the yellow daffodils beside the white daisy’s. The daffodils refused to grow in neat rows and that bothered the otherwise symmetrical layout of the garden he had arranged for mother. he looked at the sun and cursed… he really didn’t have time for this, aside from the spring classes he had agreed to teach and agreeing to coach junior polo for the freshmen sorcerers, he had not anticipated the amount of trouble he encountered in building the cabin and laying the magics it needed for mother… the elven court was playing havoc on his regular spells and he had needed to call in a few favours to untangle the snarl in the weave that ran through the area. Then there had been the actual move, getting her settled, getting her acquainted with the local community, finding the appropriate services for mother and assuring compensation and materials could be shipped here in a timely fashion. He wiped his brow, it was near exhausting. He wiped his brow trying to calculate how much time he’d put into this, he really should check in with those sailors soon; time was tending to get away from him… but first maybe one more glance at the garden, this time from the bench across the road, that’s where mother would want to take her afternoon tea… that was the view that counted. He walked down the little path and opened the charming white picket gate to cross the road and when nearly bumped into them. Seven elves and a human, all very well armed with dour looks on their faces.

“Why Hello there, ladies, gentlemen” Krieger greeted… there was an awkward look among the elves and human, a tightening of grips on their weapons. Krieger whispered a word and

POP

He appeared maybe thirty feet down the road from them

“Apologies, he called over… I had thought at first you were from here… my bad… I’m new”

“Listen, human…” Folwin started but was interrupted right away

“That’s racist” Krieger said. The elf was taken aback for a minute

“Actually it’s not, you’re a human and I called you human… that is accurate not racist” Folwin replied… he had met these snooty Don-Ton liberal types before, and he was sick of hearing it

“It is, you said it in a derogatory tone, one that implied a meaning of ‘less then’, or at best ‘not enough’” Krieger responded

“I think I know what my tone was, I was not implying less then, I was merely addressing you in the way I could having not known your name yet”

“I am afraid I don’t buy it, I am professor at the Tower of Sorcery in Don-Ton, I have taught classes on species relations and tonal degradation through passive racism and it’s my belief that…”

“By the gods are you for real?” Folwin interrupted hands spreading in exasperation “Even if I did imply less then. WHICH I AM NOT SAYING I DID… would it be wrong? I am an elf we are a more evolved species then you… would that be so inaccurate”

“Surprise surprise… like I have never heard that before… funny how such an ‘evolved species’ can’t make a better argument then ‘I was here for first so I must be better’. I am a Wizard of the Arcane Order, I can latterly rearrange the laws of physics and nature to better suite my mood… you propel shards of wood with wax horse gut for a living in attempts to kill other creatures… which one of us is more evolved?”

“So because a single human manages to get a glimmer of what magic looks like…”

“ENOUGH!” the human accompanying the elves called “We have not time for this” he said in a more reasonable voice. The words seemed to get Folwin back on track as he turned back to the wizard

“We have no quarrel with you, clear the road and stay out of our way, and you will not be harmed”

“Well, no offense but I don’t really think I’m going to be harmed either way here… but I take your point that you are in a hurry… I am afraid however I need to ask your business before I depart… to assure it does not hamper my own”

“We care nothing for your little cottage, our business is with the Lady Alfirin and the villa, clear the road now”

“First… I think you should all know, that the cottage is much bigger on the inside… it is very cool… took me several months to set up, especially with the snarl here… it’s actually quit the feat of conjuring and special management, you see…”

PING

An arrow raced towards Kriegers heart, stopping mere millimetres from its appointed target before uselessly falling to the ground at his feet… Krieger looked up shock. “You shot me? While I was telling you about the cool cottage? How could you?” Folwin glowered at the wizard, but also seemed nervous that his arrow had had no effect.

“I said clear the road, now do it, or suffer the consequences!” The elf barked

“Yes, Consequences, that was my second point… you see I have just settled my mother here, she loves the place, it is really quiet beautiful… I know Thalion said it was a spectacularly beautiful place, but you know, everyone says that about their home… but seriously, look at this place, it is wonderful, and the climate is ideal for mother’s condition. Also just recently she has started making friends with a few of the locals, there is a wonderful young Halfling women named Sophie… she has just the most amazing blends of herbal teas… and plays canasta… can you believe it, my mother has been looking for a canasta partner for almost six years, and right here I find not only that, but also the herbal teas… which are not only good for her health, but also quiet delicious, I do believe I will be stocking them in my tower as well when I return”

PING

“Really?” Kriegers voice held a tone of annoyance now as a second arrow bounced off his chest “You thought when I saw seven elven archers I would only protect myself against one arrow? You really do think humans are stupid don’t you… you are such a racist” Folwin glared firing another arrow at him, not expecting it to have any more effect then the first two

“I AM NOT A RACIST!”

“Said every racist ever” Kreiger rebutted “Anyway, so you can see how I am not keen to upset the landlords here, and you kidnapping the landlords sister may not actually impact my rent, it will certainly affect the locals and I just can’t have any more change right now, mother has already been through a lot of upheaval” Kreiger explained dutifully

“Kill him, just… kill him please” Folwin ordered of his men, who all drew bows and fired

PING PING PING PING
PING PING
PING

Kreiger sighed and pointed to the right side of the road, the side that held his mother cottage and quickly cast a long wall of force parallel to the road

PING PING PING PING
PING PING PING PING
PING PING PING
PING PING

The wizard began moving faster now, he could sense that his spell was being pushed to its limits, a second wall of force appeared along the opposite side of the road, it would not due at all to destroy mothers view with any stray spell effects.

PING PING PING
PING PING PING PING PING
PING PING PING

THUNK

Krieger gritted his teeth as the final arrow sunk into his arm and bit deeply, he touched his belt and summoned his staff to his hand. With a wave of the staff on wind wall appeared just before him that would rebuff arrows in the immediate future, he raised his voice to be heard over the sudden gust in the wind tunnel

“You cannot win this day, you may not continue to the Villa, as yet I have not expended and spells of cost, if you force me to do that… none of you shall live.” Krieger sighed as he saw the elves draw their long swords and rush forward… they were deifinently racists


2nd of Floodtime, 383 ONT 2:58pm, Lyithalus Vineyard, the Ilse of Amyenhone, Novarthia, Elven Court

Krieger focused once again causing another rift to open up, the strange whirling and popping noise from the reality he had chosen once again assaulted his ears. As the rift stabilized he nodded to the two summoned Dire Apes and they hustled forth grabbing another two corpses and throwing them through the rift, they turned and approached the last remaining load, a tied and gagged Folwin. He was bleeding from several wounds but the stubborn elf refused to give into blood lose and die. As one of the Dire Apes grabbed the elves blond hair and began to drag him towards the rift, the elf struggled and gagged, desperately trying to say something.

“Stop” Krieger said to the ape, “remove his gag” the ape did as he was bade and roughly ripped the cloth from the injured elves mouth

“Don’t do this… you can’t just throw me onto another plane… please… let me go…” the elf sobbed. Krieger tsked and shook his head at the sorrowful display, he made a signal with his hand and the gag jumped up and secured itself in the elves throat once more.

“Oh come on… Don’t look at me like that… I gave you plenty of opportunities to leave me be and you just would not.” The elf continued to struggle and cry, Krieger felt a little bad for him “I suppose I could turn you over to the authorities and let them try and sort this whole thing out…” At this the elf nodded enthusiastically “… but I really don’t have time to be dealing with elven courts and elven laws…I am pretty sure you are in the wrong… but why worry about it… beside in my experience in Don-Ton the court system is pretty overburdened, best to not bother them with things that you can handle yourself” as he said the words the ape began to drag the elf towards the rift, the elf thrashed and fought but to no avail. “I am not leaving you completely to your death, you weapons have already been tossed through, and once the rift closes my spells binding you will be ended and you will be free… you might be able to survive and carve out a living there… maybe not however… the plane is one of chaos and confusion… it is in constant flux… but you are a superior being aren’t you… probably won’t be a problem at all for you” again the elf thrashed and tried to speak but the gag held him true as the Ape dragged him through the rift… once they were through Krieger dismissed the Ape and closed the rift leaving Folwin to the fates. His unseen servants had almost finished cleaning up the road of any debris and stray arrows. “An arrow can be scried, as can anything left behind… anything you find I want burnt to ash… take it into the stoves and get it done” with that finished Krieger dismissed his final walls and turned back to the bench having a seat and letting out a long sigh… he did not like the flower arrangement… but it would have to do for now… he had other business to attend

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Wine Time

1st of Floodtime, 383 ONT 10:13am, Lyithalus Vineyard, the Ilse of Amyenhone, Novarthia, Elven Court

Audomar Burrows wiped the sweat from his brow and he stood up and stretched, the sun was getting hot, and he had been in the valley since sunrise. He pulled out his wineskin and took a slight sip of the rejuvenating wine. He had to admit, though the work was hard, he loved his home. His eyes stretched along the gentle hill filled with neat rows of grapes; he saw his family and neighbors working diligently, Floodtime was when the gully worms were known to come, and each plant had to be carefully inspected and culled else you risked losing the entire row, these grapes needed much in the way of tender care, they would only bear fruit once every six seasons, but when they did, they were the tastiest and most special golden grapes that one could ask for; Audomar could hardly wait, according to the ledgers, if they had done their jobs properly for the past decade, by Harvest he would get to once again taste these wonderful grapes. The aged Halfling bent down once more, carefully moving a small leaf aside with two fingers and searching below for the pests, now gully worm, no sign of a hole either. He smiled to himself, he and his kinsmen had worked hard, had studied hard under their elven friends , he would be surprised if they found a single gully worm in the entire vineyard, but by Falas’s Beard he would check, and check again and search each four day until the end of gully worm season. This year he was being permitted to brew one very small batch of white wine all by himself, and when his grandchildren opened the cask in ninety years, he was determined that it would taste just as good, if not better then Master Alfirin’s own. He grinned wryly; to brew elven wine without being an elf… if that weren’t something, well, he didn’t know what was then.

He sensed more then saw or heard the commotion three rows over, right on the fringe of the northern field. He assumed it was that damndable wizard Krieger again. For the last two weeks the wizard had been perfecting some sort of teleportation shortcut domahicky magic thingy… Audomar was not a fan, if the fellow wanted to teleport to his cabin… which Audomar was pretty sure Master Alfirin had been a might too generous in rent… but if he wanted to teleport there so be it, but why did he have to be going around the property and setting up “jump spots” and “wiz poppers” and whatever other magical nonsense he was doing, it was distracting to the folk and annoying to hear about. Audomar sighed and raised his hand calling his daughter Kelsey over.

“Yes Papa?” the little girl said, having run up the row to him. He smiled, she be a fine vintor one day. Already she could run through the fields without damaging our hurting the plants.

“I am pretty sure that Mr. Krieger fellow is causing himself a great nuisance again over on the high path… I’m gonna go look into it, but as per the rules I need ya to run and get Master Thesalour… Master Alfirin was clear that he is to check every single instance no matters what”

“Right away Papa” The little girl said, and took off down the hills towards the villa. Audomar hitched his belt that held his many gardening tools, adjusted his straw hat and picked up his walked stick, carefully making his way through the fields. He cut over two rows and then climbed a slight embankment pulling himself onto a cobbled path that led along the northern and eastern end of Lyithalus. He did not have to walk far before he met with four elves armed well in armor of chainmail and leather, caring strung bows and escorting a human who looked to be from the desert lands. Audormar felt a pit in his stomach as he became uneasy, but tried to supress it as he cleared his voice and called out in High Elven to them.

“Hail and well met friends, welcome to the Lyithalus. May I be of service to you.” The human looked to the elves, he appeared not to understand the elven language. One of the elves, a blond man with close cropped hair spoke for the group.

“Clear the road Halfling, we have business in this area, and haven’t time for idle chatter” His tone was curt and lacked any warmth of friendliness. Audormar felt the pit grow and it nearly filled his chest, but still he spoke forward

“Perhaps you are lost then friend, this land is ruled by the Alfirin family, I am Audormar Burrows their Master of Crops, I am afraid I cannot let you wander the grounds unescorted, if you have business with the Lady Alfirin I can escort you, else I will have to see you back to the crossroads” His voice managed to hold its friendly tone, and only quavered a little towards the end, but he covered that up with a throat clear that he hoped spoke of authority. There was a brief conversation between the elf who had spoken and the human in a language that was unfamiliar to Audormar. He tried to comfort himself while they spoke, telling himself that they were just explaining that they had gone the wrong way, and that any moment they would smile and nod to him and head back to the crossroads… sadly Audormar didn’t believe this himself, and while he kept a good grip on his cane he also reached to his belt and his hand grasped the familiar handle of his trust spade. The conversation finished and the turned back to Audormar

“By order of the Sons of Treefall, get out of the way or I will shoot you dead” the elf said, raising his bow and seamlessly knocking an arrow. Audormar’s legs stopped working, his mouth went dry, he was terrified, he didn’t know what to do, his hand clutched at his little spade, but he felt like he couldn’t move now if he wanted to.

“That is an interesting directive you have chosen to offer, since I am the only ranking member of the Sons of Treefall on Lyithalus” came a familiar elven voice from behind Audormar, the Halfling turned and saw good old Master Thesalour walking up the pathway, his bow strung and in his hand at his side, his pipe still in the corner of his mouth as he walked. The blond elf seemed taken aback by the new arrival

“Who are you, identify yourself” The elf snapped. Thesalour walked up to Audormar, and gently ushered him to the side of the path before responding.

“Perhaps the sun is too hot for that armor my friend, your manners seem to have sweated away” Thesalour quipped, his tone still light, but now with an edge to it. “I am Ser Onas Thesalour of the Sons of Treefall, Protectorate of Liythalus, and as our Master of Plants mentioned, you are trespassing, and you have illed my name in your command to my companion here. I will hear your names, your reasons, your apology to Master Burrows, and then see you to the crossroads.” Master Thesalour didn’t have any quaver in his voice, and seemed at ease that the blond elf still had his bow knocked while he in return only held his pipe. The elf ease the tension on his bow string and interpreted for the human before responding.

“I am Folwin Jocan, of the Sons of Treefall, I was sent here by Captain Sylora Valindra, I have orders to take the Lady Nueleth into my custody and burn Alfirin manner. Step aside Ser Thesalour, I do not wish to fight a brother” Master Thesalour took a long pull from his pipe, savouring the smoke before exhaling, he then knelt and tapped out the remaining weed, stepping on it to assure it was out before replacing his pipe in his pouch.

“It has been a long time since I read the Book of Treefall, but last time I did I seem to recall a full knight outranked a Captain, is that still the case?” Folwin looked a little sheepish but nodded. “Good, then your new orders are to fuck off, to tell Captain Valindra that I would have words with her personally, and to never comeback to Liythalus”. All the kindness was gone from the knight’s voice now, Audormar had never seen Master Thesalour like this before, he had always had a glass of wine in his hand and his pipe in his mouth. The Lady Alfirin often cursed about his laziness when Master Thesalour wasn’t about, but today, the elven knight had no kindness in his eyes, no smile on his lips, just the icy blue stare of one who would soon summon death and pain.

“Come on Onas, it doesn’t have to be this way, there are four of us…”

“You assume much Folwin, To you I am Ser Thesalour, and believe it or not, counting is one of the many things they teach knights… you have been given an order, and by every law I can name are in the wrong…” here Master Thesalour switched from the high elven tongue into the common tongue “I may not be able to kill you all, but it comes to it I promise you Folwin, that you and your human will both be dead before I fall” there was a long pronounced silence with the elves and human all exchanging glances before Folwin spoke once more

“This isn’t over,” he said dramatically as he sheathed his arrow and lowered his bow

“No, it’s not Folwin” Master Thesalour said as knocked one of his own with uncanny speed and pulled back on his string. The other elves yelped in worry, many reaching for their own arrows but all stopping short of knocking their bows “you still have not apologised to our Master of Plants” the knight said, a slight grin returning to his face. The blond elf looked incensed, but once again seeing the precarious position here was in he seemed to take several breaths and visibly calm himself

“I apologize Master Halfling” Folwin said

“What are you apologizing for?” The knight called, the elf shot a glare that would turn a gorgon to stone

“I apologize for my lack of manners, please forgive me so that we might part with my honour intact” The elf said, reciting the ancient elven apology that every small child learnt. Audormar was a bit taken aback, he almost was unable to speak, with a quick cough he croaked his response

“Think nothing of it, my honourable friend”, Master Thesalour lowered his bow and spoke once more in a jovial tone

“Good, now we may part in friendship instead of anger. Folwin, I trust you can find the crossroad without trouble?” the elf asked pointing with his bow back the way Folwin and his party had come from

“Indeed, until we meet again Ser Thesalour” Folwin responded

With that the elves and the human turned and quickly departed, Audormar and Master Thesalour following them until they could see them reach the crossroads and continue back towards the city. Once they were truly gone Audormar let out a long low sigh of relief

“Well, I say to you Master Thesalour, I am sure glad you came along, and that that is over, phew” the elf gave the Halfling a pitying look

“I am afraid my friend that this had only just begun, come, we must speak to the Lady Alfirin at once”

To be continued.

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A Thing, pt 2

A Thing, Pt 2

An unknown amount of years later

“… and that is why I feel that the creature known as Pelly should be executed by the council of Gods” the Troll finished

“VERY WELL… ALL IN FAVOUR?” but a few gods raised their hands “IT APPEARS NOT THIS TIME” Vol’Gatha stated and turned looking down the table “NOW IF THIS CONCLUDES THE REGULAR BUSINESS, LET US GET TO AGREEMENT AT HAND… THE FLOOR CEDES TO TALIB” the man in grey nodded an acknowledgement to her before standing

“My fellow divine beings, recently I was informed that the church of Prometheus has decided to declare a Holy War on my church…” There were some surprised gasps from several individuals around the table. “I know, I was rather surprised myself, but I would like to clarify exactly whom I am to be at war with, just so that there are no… misunderstandings later” the older man with scales stood and glared down the table at Talib

“I know what you are doing Talib, and I haven’t the time or patience for this. That item should not have been on the prime material plane to begin with, you knew exactly what was going to happen”

“My Friend Kelezandri… I am wounded… I had no idea that that particular symbol had made its way onto Argyle… but alas it has, and your son’s church as declared war… now I need to know if you will be joining such an endeavor”

“AND WHAT IF WE WERE… IT WOULDN’T TAKE MUCH TO FREEZE OUT THE LIKES OF YOUR FOLLOWERS!” Anamachara shouted jumping to her feet

“Muzzel your dog Kelezandri or I’ll put it down” Talib warned his voice becoming deadly serious

“Call her a dog again and I’ll cut that pretty tongue of yours out” Aleau called back her dirk back in her hand

“My Lords, must we go through this every time” Raven appealed to the group

“I vote we all let it play out this time” The Dwarf in Chainmail quipped, but Kelezandri placed a hand on Anamachara’s shoulder and she and Aleau were once again seated.

“Talib, You know I am pressed on several fronts on the plane of water, accept my apology for the rash actions of my son’s follower so we can put this behind us, no one wants another war on Argyle” Kelezandri’s words seemed tired and frustrated, his voice that of an ancient current deep below the waves

“Talibious,” Gabriel added “That is a very reasonable request, and witnessed by this council, will you concede that it is enough?”

“He cannot” came a low and morose voice from Raven, the fey was looking down at his feet but stood and faced the groups elaborating “He cannot, the item destroyed was a shardling, breaking it is akin to drawing the blood of a god, and the act was sealed by a divine creature… in this case Pelly acting on behalf of his father, and supported by a member of Prometheus’s church. To accept this Talib would be forced to cede domains or step down a godly tier… I am afraid in this case my Lord… Sorry is not going to cut it”

“Really, so anyone can just screw around in the woods and make a god war with another god?” Aurora asked, a note of worry in her voice

“Not anyone Aurora… but yes, mortals can cause a lot of trouble when left to their own devices” Raven responded ruefully

“Which brings us to that matter at hand…” Talib continued “Currently you provide spells to Prometheus’s clerics, you shelter his churches and people in your holy cities, and your triad exacts revenge on his behalf… will this continue should war arise?”

“What if it did Talib…” Hansel put in, Kelezandri’s hand came out to usher him down but the redhead pressed forward “No Seriously… let’s think about this for a minute… what if it did… Do you want war with Water? Don-Ton only has one city on its side and that is Rehume… would you end that? Do your followers no longer wish the gift of potions, the gift of sea travel, the gift of lust, or ice? We are the very nature of all beings… is war with us something you truly wish?” Talib seemed a little off put
“Let us not jump to conclusion that Talib is alone in these matters,” The merchant spoke from his lush seat “Where would your Holy Cities be without trade or commerce, how would your people get their ingredients for their potions?” The threat hung out there as a silence came across the table

“If no God is willing to sponsor Prometheus in his misaligned goals, then I would have the following demands met…” Talib said to those assembled. “His Temple in Rehume is to be torn down, his followers are to build a temple to me in its place. His Churches will tithe 12% of its yearly income to mine for the next three years. Rehume will lift its ban on undead within the city, and Flitt Fargazers soul will be gifted to me whenever his end should come”

“THERE IS NO WAY YOU WILL HAVE A TEMPLE IN REHUME… AND UNDEAD WALKING ITS STREETS. I WILL DUST IN THE COSMOSE BEFORE…” Anamachara jumped up shouted but Aleau pulled her back to her seat

“I…” Hansel started but saw the look in Kelezandri’s eye and trailed off

“Will no one here sponsor Prometheus then? Will no one take up his cause?” Talib asked, a wicked grin crossing his face

“Let us holdout a moment longer…” Raven said “We have not yet heard from our newest goddess… She of the Night Wind, what say you to all of this?”

To Be Continued by Jamie

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