Rumblings of Change

Revelations and Raids

From the Journal of Diala

Following our victory over our drow tormentors, we finally left the wilds of the forest behind us, leaving our fallen comrade’s feral pet with her odd, but oddly fitting brother. After a brief but tense stop in Longsaddle, we picked up Aethis, whose condition had not changed. While I am saddened that the Harpells could not find a way to cure him, I am also relieved since who is to say what chaos such an attempt could unleash, both on our senseless comrade as well on themselves. We left the town behind, Aethis now with us in a cart and made our way to Waterdeep. Though my comrades think to continue on from there, I hope against hope that there we can find a cure for not just Aethis, but for Corlin.

Dear sweet, now nearly brainless Corlin. Though he retains enough of himself to know us to be friends and his skill with his sword has not lessened greatly, he is little more than an infant in a man’s body, with a man’s strength but none of the restraint he gained through experience. It is merely a matter of time before he hurts himself or someone else due to his mindless ignorance and that is something that weighs on me as I lay awake at night. Hopefully Waterdeep can restore him to me.

At one of our stops along the long road, we discovered that many of us, myself and Fael excluded all shared the same birthday. Tess raised some troubling questions, but I cannot let myself dwell on those myself. Once Corlin is restored, we can look more into her line of reasoning, but until then I shall focus on his mind before I worry about his heritage.

That night we stayed at the inn only to be awoken by a loud boom of destruction from Tess’ room. Corlin, acting on little more than instinct, rushed downstairs and I followed him, though this lead us away from Tess’ room and the source of whatever this disturbance was. Perhaps it was for the best, as later we found that Tess abandoned her room nearly from the start. In the common room below, we found ourselves facing a small force of undead. Most were shambling, mummified minotaurs, but they were being led by a faded, ghostly creature wearing armor. We managed to break their attack, either destroying our foes or sending them fleeing into the night, but found that they had pointedly started their attack by slipping into Tess’ room. That could only mean that their attack was directed specifically at us and was not, as I had hoped, been simple chance. So fresh from freeing ourselves for the nearly constant torments of the drow and now we are being targeted again? The gods seem cruel to me tonight.

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Revelation
Tessara's Journal

I am the daughter of Eilistraee.

Were we not on our way south on a very important journey to save the life of a friend, I would have a mind to turn around at head back to Silverymoon, have a talk with Alustriel, does she know? Has she always known and if so, why didn’t she ever tell me? It would certainly explain why she took me in, and possibly also why she was always so distant…

I suppose I should back up a bit. When we were facing the drow their leader had made a comment. She claimed that she and her companions would kill us “unless [our] parents interfered”. The past few days that has stuck with me, gnawing at the back of my mind.

We made our way to longsaddle, picked up Aethis and a card to transport him, and we started southward. Our plan was to travel to Waterdeep, and from there take a ship to the next leg of our journey. In the town of Triboar we stopped to celebrate our birthdays.

Yes, birthdays. Everyone except Fael and Diala, we all have the same birthday… even Kosh. That seemed too… convenient to be merely coincidence. To the group I asked “Well, what happened 26 years ago?”

Diala was the one to answer “The time of troubles…”

I needed a moment to think, and stepped outside. I decided it was time to ask someone who knew… My sword.

“You’ve told me before you cannot reveal anything I do not already know to ask, but that you know more than I do. Am I the daughter of Eilistraee?”

The answer came back after a long pause. “Yes.”

Holy shit… I still am not sure what that means. Am I some kind of demi-god, or just a mere mortal? Is that why events have transpired, does my mother have some grand plan for me?

I didn’t have a very restful night, on top of my mind being troubled by this new revelation, we were attacked by mummies. Conspicuously right after I had run into Xil again… Something seemed off about him…

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Memoirs of Kosh, page 2
On the Heroes of Morals

The Divine Murder.

What is Murder when you are immortal? The Angel’s cannot die, nor Devil’s. From what I understand they are just sent back to their respective realms for a hundred years, or their energy is dispersed upon death, going back to the pit or cloud they came from.

It seems from this there is an eternal balance… but that is not so, for we know Angels can fall if they are not perfectly good. We have even murdered some of these ‘Angels’. Devil’s and Demon’s though, can they rise? I have never heard of a Devil rising. If they somehow do, it must be far far less common. So uncommon that it is effectively impossible.

And it turns out I may be the spawn of one of these Divine. Was it a Devil or an Angel? Was I damned from birth, or do I get a choice? And even if I did choose good, in the eternal nature of the universe, would I not eventually fall? For if all Angels can fall, given long enough, they will all fall, and from there they can not be redeemed. Are we all doomed to damnation?

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I have seen the face of Marthammor Duin
Lowe

We hunted down those drow and put them out of our misery. In the moment that I struck one down, she hit me with a powerful spell. I was overtaken by darkness and then by light. The great Marthammor Duin informed me that I had to go back. I felt the presence of my brother and then I was awake again.

This is a sign. It’s a warning. I need to align myself more closely with my god. I need to be more dedicated in his service.

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Memoirs of Kosh
On the Morals of Heroes

Murder murder murder murder. It’s not what we do, it’s what we are. We adventures and heroes. We murder to save people. We murder for their magic items. We murder because they look different. We murder because they are evil. We murder for power. We murder because we can. At least that is how it seems. These are the laws of what we can murder:

Anything that is irredeemably evil. Goblins. Orcs. Ogres. Giants. Drider. Duegar. Fallen Angels. Demons. Yet somehow not all Drow are irredeemably evil. Some are good even… so we have to check if they are evil before we can murder them. More then that, we have to check if they are up to no good currently before we can murder them! How troublesome.

Yet… they are still redeemable. As are humans, elves, dwarves, gnomes, haflings. They may have some evil in their ranks, but they are considered the redeemable races, so ones we can’t murder out right… even if they are evil. They have to be up to no good before we get to murder them. How troublesome.

Have you noticed a pattern? It is the ‘ugly’ races that are irredeemable, and thus free to kill, and the ‘pretty’ races that are redeemable, so thus one has to be sure they are evil AND up to no good to kill them. Seems a bit racist, don’t you think? Just because an orc is ugly, they are irredeemable? Can there not be a good orc, or even a tribe of good orcs? Could not there be good orcs among the armies now, fighting for their families, doing what is considered ‘evil’ not because they want to, but because they have to? Or at the very least they were brought up to be so. Could there not be hope for their bloodline?

According to the world no. They are irredeemable, and thus fit for slaughter. Is that fair? Is that right? Should we care? Either way we still get to fight and murder, and isn’t that what we all really want as heroes?

I am a Paladin and a Hero. Do not worry, I am an equal opportunity Hero! I will kill anyone and anything that is evil! It’s my divine right as a Paladin! But don’t worry, at least I’m not racist…

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The wolf isn't the one drooling

From Diala’s Journal

We found our armor and the rest of our gear, which had been taken from us when we were captured. Those of us that weren’t already armed were now able to join into the fight equally, though I still find myself more than a little curious how so many of our small band were able to call their weapons to their sides. I studied long and hard, bonding with my blade in a way that I had considered unique, but so many were able to reach out and make my hard work look pointless…

Focus, I must focus. We decided against leaving the ruins since we couldn’t guarantee that we’d easily be able to do so or make our way back inside. Fleeing was not an option either, since the drow seemed fiendishly set on pitting their infernal allies against us on a regular basis and with increasing effectiveness. We had to end this soon or they’d eventually overwhelm us, no matter where we fled. After some debate, we retreated back to the jail portion of the ruins that we had just cleared, intent on resting and using its impressive fortifications to our favor should the drow decide to attack us before we could renew ourselves. Luck, or something else, was on our side and we were able to rest uninterrupted.

Now, magics and spells fully replenished, we set forth to find and end the drow threat. Moving further into the ruins finally led to a large room and the drow who, after cryptic taunts and what had to be subtle lies, attacked. In the vicious battle, the elf, Marisol, was slaughtered and Corlin reduced to a incoherent simpleton. Though the elf seems beyond even divine aid, I must research more into Corlin’s condition, for though he can still fight to some extent, this husk of a man is not the man I married.

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Monologuing
Tessara's Journal

We finally reached the final chamber of the ruins. After fighting our way through these ruins for the better part of 2 days we finally reached the end. Lowe decided to show off and leap up to the second level of the chamber, and immediately fell silent. Fael and I instead opted to go around.

After climbing the stairs to the second floor we were confronted by the remaining two Drow. (The third we confronted earlier and he had fled. After this fight I am writing about we found him unconscious and finished him off.)

I had cast invisibility on both of us, but it turned out the wizard could still see us. Lowe was standing stiff, apparently he went silent because of a hold person spell. Rather than attack us, she instead began to Monologue. Ugh.

It wasn’t all bad, we had a brief chance for our allies to get in position, and she seemed to know things about us that we ourselves didn’t. She seemed confident that we would fall “unless our parents interfere”. She may have been blowing smoke out her ass, but then again, she could know something we don’t…

Could it be possible? No, there’s no way… Alustriel certainly would have told me, right?

In any case, there was no interference, and we kicked there asses, so there’s that. We had a couple of close calls, but thankfully Ulfgar is quick with his magic.

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A Bit Out of It
Tessara's Journal

I’ve been feeling a bit out of it today. Details are a bit hazy, but I think we got captured and then escaped our cells. Somewhere in the middle of it our weapons were summoned to us. I suspect there is a connection between us that goes beyond us just being friends. I’ve still no idea what that connection is, but it is certain that we are all touched by fate. (Well, not Diala and Fael, not in the same way at least)

My being out if it continued, our escape was trickier than it should have been, but in any case we finally found our gear, but there was still a fight ahead.

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Jailbreak

We found ourselves armed and freed from our cell, but one of our jailers had fled and had activated some magical trap that held us trapped in the few rooms adjacent to our cell. Fortunately, Ulthgar was able to use a blessing of his god to move past the trap with a few in tow, but for a long time, while they toiled to find and disarm the controls for our prison, Lowe and I turned to hammering our way out directly through a wall. The going was slow and, ultimately not needed as my friends managed to bypass the trap and let us out.

And what awaited us? More dwarven slaves, but this time backed up by massive spiders and driders, twisted drow creatures merged with spiders in what I would assume is mockery of their goddess. We managed to cut these creatures down and even found our armor, but we still do not know how deep in these dungeons we are or what forces remain between us and freedom.

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My Trusty Hammer
Lowe

Today I learned that my hammer is even more trusty that I thought. If this is the sort of thing that no earthly power can possibly separate from me, may be it should have a name. I could call it something descriptive and literal like “Demon Smasher” or “Concusser.” Or something epic sounding like “Derristra,” except that sounds like a place name. Or something classic like “Carl”, perhaps it would seem more exotic if I spelled it Karle. “You shall feel the power of Karle!” I don’t know; I’ll decide later. Maybe it already has a name. If it turns out it can talk as well as teleport into my hand, I will ask it what it’s name is.

In any case these drow are going to be sorry that they messed with dwarves. Well, surface dwarves, I guess. Apparently they have had reasonable success messing with these other dwarves. This time though, they’re going to be sorry, but not for very long, because they’ll be dead.

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