Posts tagged "Writing":
Name : Trill Race : Teir'Dal Age : 35 (ie. quite young) Profession: Battle Vocalist (Dirge)
Q. What was your character’s upbringing like? Did circumstance surround them from his birth, or was their life up until their adventuring career relatively bland? What landmark occurrences made them who they are today?
A. Trill’s upbringing was harsher than most, when she was young, her father was killed by Orcs, and even though the Orcs paid bitterly with their lives and the lives of their young, it was no comfort financially nor status wise amongst the Teir’Dal in Freeport. Her mother raised her as best she could, distilling the hatred and concentrating it in the voice of Trill. She was a remarkable vocalist, and rather than curl the tongue around pitiful chants of love or wants, Trill’s mother poured the loathing of her race and her personal loneliness into Trills choral training. Songs that were twisted yet mesmerising now flowed from Trill like they were the echoes from her dear Mothers blackened heart. And Trill whorshipped her Mother like Innoruk himself.
Q. What are your character’s goals and motivations? What do they strive for, toil for? Power? Wealth? Remembrance? Adventuring? What does your character ultimately wish to achieve?
A. Trill’s motivation comes from the basic premise that control, deathly control, can forge a new life for herself and her Mother. She wants to charm those in battle and slay them to reap what she can from their bodies. If enough wealth can be obtained through her young adventuring career then perhaps she can buy back some of the respect lost amongst the Teir’Dal when her Father was killed. Ultimately her adventuring career has proved troublesome and she is drawn apart like meat from the bone, her doctrine of hate and loathing is being tempered by weariness in travel and loneliness - without her Mother mentoring her constantly - she finds the road a parched dusty one, and her senses are becoming dulled to the presence of the lower races. I think her focus, her purpose is becoming unclear the more she is away from her Mother and her Teir’Dal kin.
Q. Why did your character choose their profession? What event moved them toward their path?
A. The profession of Dirge more or less chose Trill (aided heavily by her mother’s encouragement), as soon as she could speak, the tonal accompaniment of her voice to her Mothers musical attempts, shone bright like a beacon of talent, her Mother could not resist the opportunity to have a Battle Vocalist as a daughter to put paid the shame of her Husbands death.
Q. What are your character’s relatives like? Are they alive, dead, adventurers, merchants, blacksmiths? What were your living arrangements and surroundings growing up? Do you have any siblings, childhood rivals, etc?
A. Trill was an only child, mainly because her Father was killed so early on in the marriage, there was no others. Her Mother performed “tunes” as a musician to pay for Trill’s upbringing and coaching. She is still alive, residing in Freeport, living off what Trill can get to her, or the odd appearance when she can.
Q. What does your character do when not ‘Active’ in the game? (IE any time you are logged out of Everquest)
A. Trill usually rests. As much as she can. The burden of adventuring is hard on the young elven girl, her voice sometimes seems broken, due to wind, rain and dust, softening her vocal chords, malforming them into breathless lullaby organs, than sharp anthemic caterwauling tools of pain. So she hides out in any Inn that will have her. She sips whatever oily exudate she can to line her throat for the next adventure that will be on her at first light. Often she will curl up somewhere and hide in the shadows until her lungs have rested. She will not make a spectacle of herself amongst such lowlife.
Q. Name the people most trusted as allies, in your character’s opinion?
A. Trill trusts no-one except her Mother. However, as she is worn away like dust from a rock, her judgement fades a little and she has been known to follow others, even tolerate the likes of humans for a short period, until she can function properly again. Sometimes her distrust of everyone can be forgetful when the lands beat down upon you night and day
Q. Does your character have any special quirks? A twitchy eye, a lisp, an obsession with playing cards?
A. She enjoys the taste of snake meat. Cooked. She also hates having her hair exposed to the sunlight, it goes brittle and snaps and her braiding gets dirty - she absolutely hates that! An armoured helmet is essential for Trill.
Please write a brief character history here. It does not have to be elaborate, just a general idea of your character’s experiences and a feel for why they are the way they are.
Trill’s sheltered upbringing in and around Freeport, was mainly intensive tutelage, she sang morning noon and night, and as such had little time for social contact nor education. Voicing pain and torment was her life throughout her formative years.
As she embarked upon her adventurous career, at the behest of her Mother (who thought Trill wasn’t ready), she set out into the wilds eager to test out her perilous talents on the roaving bandits, orcs and undead known to plague those lands. Unfortunately, it was true, she was not ready for the danger and peril she found. And in no time at all, Trill found herself being ‘protected’ by a lesser race, an ogre no less. Still Trill glossed over the smell and the indignity of it all, and he became (in her eyes) a servant to her, she would claim to have some mesmeric power over him.
Trill was tortured regularly whilst traversing the Nektulos Forest an area she couldn’t quite get the acoustics right, because of the trees and running water. Luckily her torment ended as she stumbled upon a passageway out into the lands known as the Thundering Steppes. Here she heard of untold riches buried underground, guarded by strong viscious gnolls. Despite the danger, the reward of plunder was too tempting to Trill, and she currently seeks like minded Teir’Dal to take down into the earth and slay these doglike spawn to reap the rewards.
Another character I began to develop on the Neverwinter Nights Persistent Server (ShadowRealm – Sister Ann Bright was the GM), was Pray – a paladin with a dark story to tell. I managed to weave Fade into his plight.
Pray Morningblade was a good man, his sense of all things right and proper and his un-founding belief in the one true God had led him onto a path of worship. However, this path was not one of placid teaching, not one of spreading the word and nurturing the flock. From an early time in his ecclesiastical life, he knew God wanted him to purge the world of those who had not fully made the transition from death to afterlife.
They required light. A Paladin’s light. A shining force so bright and so powerful that it could set them free from this stinking malaise that is their purgatory.
His time as a minister was troubled with impatience and tension. His temper was too quick to begin to understand the faithless, his will was too strong to just give sermon after sermon and expect people to take notice. He had to cleanse the land, he had to use his gifts with a sword and a divine shield to expunge the rotting dead that still walked this land, they were clueless and hateful, they had lost their way unable to decide what was life and what was death. These lost souls were so desperate to find their path to the afterlife that they were easy prey for true evil. They could be cajoled and coaxed into performing work for any evil soul that could trick them. They required light. A Paladin’s light. A shining force so bright and so powerful that it could set them free from this stinking malaise that is their purgatory.
So Pray took up the Lords challenge, he trained hard in the ways of the Paladin, soaking up the ability to turn undead by instilling the will of God within their sodden souls.
In his early years he lost his mother, perhaps this single fact moulded his fiery temper and his stone like emotions – but good was to come of it. His father was comforted by an elven lady, who could sing so sweetly that his pain dissolved into her chorus.
Years passed and his father and the elven songstress fell in love and married. Pray was unsure of himself through this time, although with the marriage come a time when the elven step mother brought into the Morningblade family her previous children. There was one child, Fade Moonbow, who seemed to give hope to Pray whenever he was lost in a faithless wilderness of teenage angst.
Fade was a spritely beautiful girl with the ability to bestow happiness and joy to the darkest of situations just by smiling. Pray took to his step sister, as a kindred spirit. Both fuelled each others desires to be better and to maintain all that is good and holy in the land.
Pray was but a season of maturity when Fade left, without word. She had participated in some elven celebration, and the next day she was gone. Her bow and some belongings gone. Pray was devastated. He called on the power of his true God to give him strength to search out his sister and no matter what had happened he knew he could make it right. Pray brooded with his skills for another season, until he felt he was ready. His moment had come. The undead would be saved, and he would scout for his treasured sister.
Many moons passed as Pray wandered the land, purging deserted churches and hidden crypts. Wherever he went there were tortured graveyards and diabolic dungeons to irradiate with the light of good. All the time he was questioning everyone he could about his sister, where was Fade? Where had she gone?
Finally he had word of her in a city not far from a den of evil that was to be his nemesis. He hurried to meet her, to greet her and to find the answer to the gnawing question of why she left without a word.
Pray met many folk, including a lady of the cloth, Sister Ann Bright, who allegedly had adventured with Fade on many occasions. All professed Fade’s good nature and expertise with a bow. All seemed uneasy when mentioning her appearance and none of them knew why she left. Pray wandered the streets for days on end. With no sign of Fade. Until he met a short gnarled man in the forests, who happened to take notice when Pray described Fade to him. The short man said she had gone to Hyde Castle to purge the darkness with her light. Pray was excited by this, at last a definite place, and a place where he may also do some good. To fight the wrath of evil side by side with his sister was all he could ask.
Deeper into the Castle Pray went, there was indeed a force unknown in these walls, Shadows and Zombies kept Pray busy almost constantly, like a knife through treacle he slowly cut them down releasing their tortured souls into the void of the afterlife, guiding them almost with his blade and his shield, thrusting them back to where they should have walked before they lost their way.
The strangest sight to behold were the wererats, grotesque creatures obviously conjured from the remains of harmless vermin, something terrible, something perverse and evil was at work with the corpses in this place. There was no sign of Fade, sometimes Pray could hear the swish of an arrow in the next room, or the growl of her forest mate, but when Pray had made it to the room, it was empty, as empty as his soul felt now – with the prospect of ever seeing his sister again draining away like the oily blood of the wererats he’d slain.
A dark moment hit him like a carriage full of fresh melon, he could hear a girl whimpering, it was like a whimper no one in their right mind would ever want to hear. Like a hushed howl, immediate and ever so demanding. The girl was under slow torture of some sort, Pray was sure of that. She needed help, it could be Fade!
Pray burst in to a room that seemed so low lit, that even the vermin bumped into each other. It was dank and heavy, you could smell rotting flesh but only as a pleasant after waft over the true insipid smell of pure evil.
He bounced with a resilient clang off one of the suppurating walls wading through the bodily pulp was becoming more and more difficult
The girl was whimpering louder now, and she actually mentioned his name … ‘Praaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyy’. Pray’s armour clinked as he shuddered to the call. He cast a holy light around himself, in order to see the grotesque innards of the room. His sword at his side, was actually tracing a pattern in thick mulched blood. He looked in shock to see his armoured legs had been covered by this gorey substance. He panicked, and started to shuffle around in the sleuce of carnage, trying to hear the direction of the moaning, faster it became, almost chanting his name now. He bounced with a resilient clang off one of the suppurating walls, wading through the bodily pulp was becoming more and more difficult, from the edge of his visored vision he could see things moving, like the floor had taken on form and shape but just out of normal eyesight range.
In a desperate attempt he turned the undead, no-one from beyond the grave would harm him now, as he finished the mantra the spell kicked in and some of the floors substance sloshed about and slooped away – however, the girls moan become more stressed, more pained, in a corner of the room he spotted her, he threw himself forward to shield her body from the evil, if he could, he landed down near her legs, he was knee deep in the broth of blood, as he passed his hand over her face, her eyes opened. Green eyes of hate. She wrapped her dead legs around his waist, and something from behind him clamoured onto his back, a dark shroud of skin wrapped around his helmet obscuring his view, his last swing with his sword cut into the undead girl as far as he could tell, the blade meeting the usual resistance of backbone. The elasticised skin around his head ripped off his helmet like it was glued to it, he managed to half turn to see a room full of men, with eyes as red as the blood that spurted down his neck, two sharp teeth delving deep into his veins, the red eyes, closing in, the light of being, draining away, a baptism of blood…
Fade… where are you?
Born deep in the Hoarfrost Mountains, secure inside the dwarven settlement of Soranathold facing out onto Mirror Lake, the young girl was raised under the religious guidance of her mother. The girl was baptised in snow as Teghannarak Soularath, the Soularath family were well respected for their jewel and armourcraft amongst the skilled trades folk of the Soranath Clan. Indeed the elaborate breastplates made by Teghannarak’s father were almost legendary amongst the other dwarven clans in the Mror Holds.
Teghannarak always felt blessed with power in her heart and in her hefty arms
Teghannarak enjoyed a relatively peaceful childhood raised in a time when the dwarven clans had put axe and blade down and settled their differences with diplomacy and negotiation via the Iron Council. Almost coddled by the Church of the Sovereign Host, Teghannarak dutifully took up the ecclesiastical duties that were asked of her. Gentle of spirit, she would spread her divine inspiration amongst the clan with much enthusiasm, however, she considered the robes of the Church most drab, so she took to wearing off cuts and experimental pieces of Armour that her father had forged. She would often find herself in the forge, excitedly trying on new shining plate. She became interested in her apparent strength to carry such weight on her shoulders. And led to quite a trivial contest between other dwarves to test their strength with a baton. Flailing the baton and beating a sheet of steel plate, to measure ones power in the diameter of impression made. Teghannarak always felt blessed with power in her heart and in her hefty arms. The Hosts will surged through her.
Although her direction was intended to take up the cloth and preach, Teghannaraks divinity usurped her destiny and edged her more towards channeling her good into a combatant guardian of all dwarven kind. Against her mothers wishes, she enrolled for cleric duties, that combined over enthusiastic preaching with defensive combat practice. It seems her fathers blood flowed more readily in her than her mother had anticipated. Adventure seemed to beckon to her, at the end of her training as a battle cleric. More than she realised. It broke her mothers heart, and steadied her fathers hammering arm, as he beat Teghannarak’s coming-of-age set of Armour over a melancholic anvil of loss.
Leaving the clans and the Hold, equipped with youthful exuberance and her fathers Armour she made her way to the fabled City of Towers, Sharn. A place where magic and industrial machines come together. A place where all walks of life converge and mix in equal parts. It was time for Teghannarak the dwarven girl to adopt an identity befitting an adventurer in such a cosmopolitan and multi-cultured city. She mixed with the city life for a while before gravitating towards the not so respected academic institute known as Morgrave University. Street talk and rumour guided her towards this temple of skewed knowledge and intrigue. She shortened her name to allow the non-dwarven tongue to speak it easily. Her appearance to most was one of a hefty swollen lady in shiny Armour, so her name had to diffuse the prejudice. She took the name Tegana Soul. Hopefully retaining enough similarity to her true name as to do honour by the Host to her family name and her clan.
Bewitched by the city and the University, Tegana swiftly took up the challenge of preaching the way of the Sovereign Host and yet learning more about the history of the city and the different races and their cultures. Never had her eager mind had so much diversity to feed upon, using her divine teachings as fuel she began settling in to academia paying her way with research opportunities that seemed to come her way without her trying. Several of these ‘opportunities’ involved some exploration of lands further afield, as well as a lot of book work. More and more, her direction was almost being guided unknowingly into harsher and more dangerous expeditions. And Tegana thrived off the excitement it presented. Her jewelcrafters eye had caught a liking for the artifacts that were being revealed in these so-called research outings. The most recent expedition had her praying in battle Armour on her way to the lands of the Giants, Xen’drik, to a city called Stormreach….
A faint glow peeped through her flaccid lids. She could hardly lift them, drained of all motivation, there was no will to return to the waking world. Dull and numbed, there was no need for her chest to expand and fill with air anymore. She undulated softly, just enough to keep a trickle of air stroking her lungs, just enough to keep her barely alive. She was running on autonomic mechanisms. Her concious self had no part in this passion play. Her blood clawed its way around her veins simply of its own volition. Perhaps she made a slight moaning sound as the air raked across her swollen throat? Perhaps it was her diagphram drumming a slow mournal beat? Someone, somewhere asked ‘what sort of stasis is this?’. She never registered the sound of their voice. It was a dim light in a dark storm indeed.
If a tear could scream, the room would be full of noise and inaudible now
A dark elf mopped her brow, with a hemp cloth soaked in briarwood sap and dewberry juice. The scented thick fluid etched a sickly trail to her eye socket, and welled up in the corner of her left eye. The concerned elf mopped again, soaking the pool back up and smearing it across her face and then her encircled her neck with it. He concentrated on an area to the side of her neck, a wound of some sort. The sap would certainly provide cleansing for that and the juice would help heal it a little. From behind this worried elf, a tall stately form was massaging the air with his long chestnut coloured fingers. It was as if someones scalp was between his fingers and he was probing it deeply. Small flecks of light appeared between his fingertips and as if from nothing he drew the atoms from the atmosphere and moulded them into luminescent water. The globulous form taking shape would convolute and contort into the shape of a small potion bottle. Then the flecks would change colour, never quite settling on a particular hue, and they would dance around this captivated gob of liquid, until it was sealed in glass forged from the very same air. The balding amber figure leant forward and handed the vial of liquid to the dark elf, as if it were an offering to a God. The elf quickly opened the vial and first poured some of the liquid into her mouth, partly her lips and lifting her head slightly, then he wantonly splashed the remaining liquid around the wound on her neck. Chanting some elvish lyric, where the words would not form clearly, but they barked out like spasms during a fever. After the elf had finished, he turned to the mage behind him, and said ‘I’ve done all I can to stem the bleeding, and perhaps the ointments and blessed water can help heal the immediate trauma’. The mage turns his head towards the fallen female and curls his lip to utter ‘We have almost nothing at our disposal to tackle such a grave injury and we have even less knowledge than that to remove any internal curse that may have polluted her soul”.
The dark elf palmed his face, and stained his white plumage with berry juice. He was in the throes of despair and he clearly wasn’t up to the job of hiding it. A single tear meandered down his cheek, and rode the hills and valleys of his face and fingers, till it parted company with his body and splashed onto the floor beneath him. If a tear could scream, the room would be full of noise and inaudible now, and he wouldn’t hear the words of comfort the erudite mage spoke. “We must gird ourselves and seek a healer with specific knowledge of this type of wound, we cannot hope to face it with our inadequate skills, the little we have done will have to suffice till we can carry her to a safe place” said the mage with steely emotionless logic. The dark elf stood up, shaking his mournful state free. “You are right Senoa, now is not the time to lament for her life hangs on a scimitars edge, and I fear she is almost cut free from the living world”. He gathers his equipment as best he can, and then carefully lifts her body onto his shoulder, carrying her like a loosely rolled carpet, slung tightly against his neck. “Let us tarry” said the dark elf, determined and focussed. “Yes Lunaril, I shall ease your burden with a few spells of strength and substance on the way, we should head North, through the scrublands and into the Forest via Nektulos gate”.
They journied as best they could, Lunaril hampered with a cold dead weight around his neck, Senoa periodically discharging spells from behind and trying to keep up with the determined beast like speed of the elf. They stopped at a fresh flowing stream to rest and gain some much needed refreshment, the cool water quenching Lunaril’s thirst, filling his aching body with a refreshing wave to dash against the rocks of tiredness and fatigue. Senoa was magically spent, the constant conjuring of the journey had drained his arcane power and a sip or two of stream water would mean he could regenerate without having to summon bottles of water for the others. As Lunaril scooped another handful of water from the stream, she moaned loudly, enough to startle the wildlife nearby and flapping birds skitted away from the surrounding treetops. Lunaril turned to her sharply, he cupped his wet hand to the side of her blue porcelain face. Surprisingly she cupped his hand with her own. Was she awake now? Was she recovering?
No sooner had he felt her soft palm touch the back of his coarse hand, than her hand twisted into a grotesque claw-like shape and grappled with his. She seemed to try and force his hand to her mouth, but Lunaril was startled enough, he recoiled backwards and removed his hand from her feeble grasp. He stood astonished as she fed her hand to herself, she was biting incessantly on the flesh between her finger and thumb. Hard enough to draw blood and tear the flesh into a small wound. Once blood flowed freely from this wound, she began lapping at it, like a cat with a prize saucer of cream. This was needy feeding. Urgent and intense. From her puckered face you could tell it was not satiating her need. With her eyes still tightly closed, the feeding motion gradually passed away, she jerked and shuffled for a few moments, and then seemed to deflate into her previous comatose state. “Our efforts are all for nought. The curse has seized her soul Senoa!” Lunaril yelped in frustration. “It does indeed seem as though she is walking with the tormented spirits”. Lunaril could not contain his anger, he picked up his blade and pressed the hilt against her forehead, breathlessly he screamed in his native tongue “Takata Sanguine Cha’kohk!”. he let his blade rest on her face for a while, as he mumbled those words over and over again, decreasing in volume, until you could hardly hear his whispered plea. He removed the sword, and a cross shaped impression was revealed, almost as if it had been painted on, her blue skin appearing to have darkened beneath the blades hilt. She shuffled and snarled, her jaws gnashing together, until her bite had caused her lower lip to bleed. It was apparent that Lunaril’s makeshift exorcism had not worked. Senoa chirped in with “I really don’t think improvisation is going to help her, we need a holy soul, to leech out the bloodcurse and free her from its malignant grip”. “We must seek someone with the divinity to help her, we must find the Matriarch!”.
Her eyes flashed open. She could feel her body strengthen even as it was being carried, lolling from side to side, her body suddenly found cohesion again. Her senses were acute. Her eyesight seemed tunnelled, focussed almost feral in its nature. She could feel a pulse, beating beneath her, she could hear blood rushing through veins, she could sense the iron in the blood, almost taste it’s metallic goodness. Her head was rolling left to right, near the chest of a man, she could sense his masculine odour and normally that would repulse her, but on this occassion the smell of his red corpuscles pulsing rythmically, almost musically under her body was enough to mask his inferior scent. Gaining overwhelming strength with each stride this man-elf took, She nuzzled tighter into his chest, his heart almost taunting her with its vibrant drumming, the thought of the flow of scarlet nectar was becoming overpowering.
Drinking too quickly, almost choking on its claret pulse.
His armour was linked at the side with a strap and a small buckle. Without any effort, she managed to scoop her hand into position to tear this aside, and reveal his exposed undergarments, the light cloth padding underneath was going to be no match for her wanton ferocity. Kicking her legs she managed to flick him off-balance, he stumbled for one pace and began to correct himeself when she struck. Her legs wrapped around his waist with unusual flexibility. She managed to gain some leverage and dug her teeth into his left side, at the armpit. As she sunk deeper she could feel his hot blood well into her mouth and she guzzled it greedily. Drinking too quickly, almost choking on its claret pulse. Conciously oblivious of her actions, she was following her basal instincts to feed. The elf carrier stumbled sideways as she bit into him, tumbling over his own feet and rolling to the ground with her clamped around his mid-section. Writhing erratically like a trapped snake, he managed to prize her off by grappling her hair and forcing her head and thorax off his shoulder. As she was forcibly disengaged, she took some flesh with her. She swung backwards wildly, her legs refusing to lose their grip around his waist. He knelt to the floor and flailed at her with his arms, he was screaming “Get her off me! I’ve been bitten!”. Senoa had registered the fact that Lunaril had gone down, he mentally sorting through the spells he knew, to see if he had one which would help this situation. “Why had she awoken now? How did she manage to bite through his armour? What have I in my repetoire to help matters?” thought Senoa. His ashen arms performed a complex dance in front of his body and a droning erudite curse seemed to provide the background music. Arcane chains appeared from the sky bolting downwards and coiling around her arms and neck. The chains seemed to consist of ethereal mists and you expect to pass your hands through them, however they had an extreme bond with their victim and the earth below. As the silver bindings tightened she relaxed her leg grip around Lunaril. He quickly scrabbled away from her, kicking and panting, clearly in a state of shock. She flipped forward onto her stomach, the chains of light struggling with her. Her head shot up and her eyes stared intently into the face of the mage. Lunarils blood still trickling from her mouth. The mage could see that her canine teeth had enlarged during the bite. Those teeth now bared in anger and frustration. His captive had quite clearly found the scent of another.
Senoa was struggling to maintain the chain spell, if he could only let go of its hold for a few moments, he would rain down the rocks from the earth on her and that would surely hold her still. He paused, the chains fell and evaporated. Senoa began to chant an earth rending spell that would summon chunks of rock above her head and let them fall, she will be damaged, but they should stun her, hopefully knocking her unconcious, so he could tend to the panicked Lunaril. She pounced like a cat towards the mage, fuelled by Lunaril’s blood, this was now a feeding frenzy. Senoa didn’t manage to finish the summoning before she hit him with a force he could barely believe. It felt like a stampede of undead horses. He fell to the ground and cracked his large brown head on the floor, enough for him to blackout for an instant. He come to, with her sat on his chest, delving to bite his soft exposed neck. Without turning to offer anymore neck than was currently on display, he shifted his eyes over to Lunaril. Much to Senoa’s dismay, Lunaril was still prone, clutching his sides, and shaking feverously. Senoa could feel her panting breath on his neck, he made peace with his Gods…
May hate keep you safe
A mighty conjured claw raised up from the earth and grappled with her, yanking her backwards and down onto the ground. Dark mists encircled her, and the undead climbed from out of the ground around the claws grip. There were two zombies and three skinned hellhounds all barking in their own way at the captive lady. Senoa paddled his feet until he was well away from the claw and the necrotic pack. He scanned around to see who had cast such a foul but welcome spell on her. A small lady in a grey robe walked up to him and helped him rise. “You seem to be having trouble here summoner” she said. “I arrived just in time, perhaps you should help your wounded Teir’Dal friend?” as she gestured over to Lunaril. “Oh yes, my lady, thank you my lady” Senoa hurried over to Lunaril, bowing on the way. The female necromancer replenished the claw and had her minions guard over the troublesome biter, she then walked over to Senoa and Lunaril. “My name is Tristitia Vharcon, and I see you have a companion who has been taken by the sanguine curse”. “Let me see that wound of yours Teir’Dal, perhaps I can cleanse it before the curse takes you”. Tristitia pulled some ointment and a rune from her bag, and placed the rune in the ointment and then onto Lunaril’s bite. She said a few words, but they were almost an ancient hum, and the runestone glowed bright crimson. Blood frothed out of the wound, and squeezed around the sides of the rune, it seemed to evaporate into a black mist and was carried away on the shallowest of breezes. Lunaril’s panic and pain seemed to ebb away, the remaining anguish on his face was for his companion in the clawed prison. Tristitia passed the runestone onto Senoa, “This stone has enveloped the bloodcurse, and it requires immediate destruction in a holy font of water, you’ll need Divine help for that”. Tristitia added “here is the cleansing ointment, be sure to get this blessed and then make sure it is imbibed by the bloodcurse victim. Once in her system, it will keep most of the curse at bay, but true exorcism cannot be performed by potion alone”. As Tristitia walked away, flicking her wrist and releasing her minions back to the earth, she said “I will lay a heavy sleep on her for now, you should get her to a Divine priest as soon as possible, I can only guarentee her stupor for a few hours. Be mindful of her condition, keep her well away from blood, or dark conditions. May hate keep you safe”. As the claw receeded, a black cloud as thick as death itself descended upon the prisoner, her flailing, and snarling stopped immediately. Senoa looked around to bid farewell to the timely necromancer, but she was already long gone.
As they hobbled wearily into the guild house, Lunaril collapsed onto the floor, with the lady slumped on top of him. Senoa managed to drag her off and he told Lunaril to go rest. From the shadows behind out slipped a dark form, almost floating along without effort. “What has befallen one of our Divine Sisters? Tell me Watchman, why is she prone and covered with a thick necrotic mist?” the hooded figure asked impatiently. Senoa stuttered “Sh..She was taken by the bloodcurse Divine Mother, we found her like this. Forgive us Mother, we have tried to keep her safe till she could be seen by you”. The Divine Matriarch, Leisekmeth floated around to the side of the fallen Sister. Senoa passed the runestone and ointment over. Without hesitation, the Matriarch spat on the stone and pocketed it, then she performed some sort of blessing with the ointment, and smeared it on her fingers. She jabbed it into the fallen Sisters mouth and made sure it covered her entire mouth, passing it over her enlarged canine teeth carefully. Another blessed word or two and the blackness lifted from the victim. The Matriarch said “Trill! Trill! wake up!” and she slapped Trill’s blue porcelain face. “By all the hate within Innoruuk you will wake up now girl!” she slapped her much harder.
Trill surfaced, she’d not felt this bad for a long time, her throat was glutinous and greasy. She tasted blood all the time, and her first thought was that there was internal bleeding. As she focussed on the face grimacing in front of her, she saw the Matriarch. Her voice cracked and broken, tried to say “Divine Mother, I must apologise for my present state”, but all she could manage was “Mothhhrr…”. “Rest Vanguard Trill for you have within you the sanguine curse, and we have only kept it at bay. You must seek the Vampiric song hidden deep within the Crypt of Thaen, and you must sing it with all your heart, for only then can you calm the bestial lust for blood that hides within you”. Trill burst into tears and then fatigue took her into a comatose that lasted for several days.
The Vampire curse is upon her. Necromantic salves and Divine blessings can only abate the need for the bloodfeed. Perhaps when the Vampiric song has been found and learned and it is sung it can mesmerise the curse to sleep. For Trill that is her only hope. The tempo of her songs have been altered eternally, and now she must use them to break the tempo of her bloodlust.
Furtively, Trill slinks into the room, scans down the pages of the Ledger.
So many names, so many hopes and dreams poured into each scribbled line. Now she prepares to invest her own future into a line of caligraphy. Normally she belittles the written word, such a dry and emotionaless way of presenting your view. How better it is to weave your tale with elation and dread through a warbled song, or a cacophonic shrill. Prejudices aside, she makes long a elaborate strokes as she pens her request.
Apparently, there are people who serve Honourably. Apparently, they make no judgement on the colour of your skin. Nor on your past. Regardless of your parentage, or deity worshipped.
Trill calms herself, she can feel her expectations rising up to overpower her, she bites her lip to silence an overenthusiastic hum. She always hums to herself for comfort. Laying the script down, she rests back and checks her scrawl.
It reads "I am uncertain of my worthiness to enter your order, but my troubled heart sings Honour in every beat. I struggle eternally against the upbringing I recieved, but have found some solace and comfort with the companionship of others and wish to solidify my desires with your help and guidance. As Teir'Dal I commit my will to your order of Honour, I hope you will consider my affiliation. My voice, lute and drum are laid at your disposal - I vow to raise the orders spirit and wane the enemy's strength. Sincerely Trill"
Ornately scribed below that are three words in ancient Teir’Dal
'Sundu Gareth Bashuk', approximately equates to "Sing of Strength and Honour" in common tongue.
Before the ink is dry, Trill is gone.
Who is Trill?
As the darkness drew in, the young Trill would cosy round her family’s fireplace and practice her vocals. A voice so sweet you would be drawn to it like a hand to a glove. Her simple scales would become freeform operettas with childlike improvisations that could seriously bring on nostalgia in even the most hardened of elves. Cushioned comfort and calming songs wouldn’t last the evening, for tonight would be different. Trill was interrupted by a clatter so loud it made her jump, and skip several notes, skewing her final scale off tune and into a spiral towards breathless nothing. Cold wind shot through the room like the slipstream from a panicked Qeynosian horse. Several men stumbled into the house, all barking out commands to one another and to Trill’s mother. They carried something. Their blood spattered decorative armour glinting a cherry red hue, traipsing blood spot footprints around the house. Footprints of soldiers forced to march to their deaths.
Trill was seven years old at the time, and she was cherubic in her appearance, such a blue porcelain princess that you would guard like honey from a bear. Her majestic face squinted in the Freeportian Twilight to catch a glimpse of the prey these warriors carry in. Her search for a clue was short when her ears popped with pain as a guttural scream flew from her mothers throat, the scream was a solid one, with little in the way of words attached, yet it seem chant incessantly for hours in Trills timid mind. The Terror masked by tears in her mothers face, made Trill instantly yelp like a scolded pup, she knew it was bad.
The soldiers of death, unfurled a soaked set of rags from a body on the floor. Trills mother collapsed, an angry bubbling heap. Trill crawled over to the body and the soldiers parted to let her in. They bowed their heads low as they curled into the darkness behind her. Through glassy eyes, she spied a face so familiar she wanted to kiss it. However, this face was but a mask, a twisted and contorted death mask, from the man she knew as her father. Before anymore could be rationalised Trill collapsed, in a heap, on her fathers dead form. She awoke seconds later, hugging him, as if to squeeze the air back in his lungs, to force the life back into his face, to hear him laugh and comfort her for just one more time.
Orc Widow, they would whisper silently like the blade of a thief as it turns in the back.
He had been on a hunting trip, a simple routine gathering expedition. Orcs had ambushed them, a whole tribe of them, they seemed driven by bloodlust of some sort. Her father had fought to the best of his ability, but with so many Orcs, they were overwhelmed quickly, such a tragedy to be slain by Orcish filth and their swarming mentality. Amongst the Teir’Dal residing in Freeport at the time, such a loss to such lowly adversaries was a very dishonourable way to go. So much so that Trill and her mother were branded as outcasts. ‘Orc Widow’, they would whisper silently like the blade of a thief as it turns in the back.
Trill could not understand the victimisation she received from the rest of her Teir’Dal friends. She withdrew from what was left of her society, and she found solace in her mothers embrace. Trill’s mother, however, was beyond grief, she had climbed that mountain and had planted her flag of anger high. It often flapped in the gentle breeze and whipped people who came to close. Inside her mountain a lava filled hatred swelled. Such that when it surfaced it would stick to those nearby. And Trill was very close by. Since her mother was a slender lady with not much in the way of physical brawn, her mind was supple enough to use her only gift, her voice as a tool of torture. Trills mother used to make ends meet by singing at tavern functions and private occasions, whilst in secret insecurity, she would coach Trill night and day, to sharpen her daughters voice beyond the musical tones. Trill clung to this attention like it would save her from the darkness of despair, when in truth her mother was crafting Trill into a weapon built from the hate and the anger of her loss.
But as Trill hardened, many lesser races would succumb to the suffocating siren song she could command
The sweet voice from the past, echoes now and then, as it is focussed like a magnifying glass upon the back of some lowly creature, until it burns so hot and so deep the creature screams its last breath and Trill absorbs its tonal death rattle into her voice, supplementing her own tones, to unleash upon the next victim. For Trill there was no education to speak of, only vocalising pain and death to her mothers heartbeat. But Trill needed nothing more, than the love and acceptance of her Mother, and the more she trained, the more her mother coveted her like a prize trinket. All too soon, for her mother, the training was at an end, and Trill was sent out to kill. If there was profit in the kill, then sing till its dead. One way or another Trills mother would buy back the respect of the Teir’Dal.
Orcs would die. They were always first on the list. But as Trill hardened, many lesser races would succumb to the suffocating siren song she could command. Blessed as Teir’Dal, Trill would broadcast her inbred hatred for the vermin that frequented Freeport. She did not see her quest as a killing spree driven by monetary gain, she saw it as a cleansing in readiness for the rebuilding of Neriak, so once again the Teir’Dal would take up their ancient place in the future of Norrath. This view would leave her alone in the wild, without companion, or aid. After a time the road beats down hard on the elven frame, and loneliness can set in. Trill’s resolute would be whittled away by time and by battle. Eroded to the core, she would often rest for very long periods to forget about loneliness to heal her scarred vocal chords. She would become a recluse in her own helmet, fixating on trivia about the brittleness of her hair, looking in the mirror too much, to prevent her from seeing the real world outside.
Trills essence was being tapped away, and she could not see how to regenerate. So she compromised, and tolerated, and roughed it as best she could. Searching for a home within the wilderness. Searching for a guild to take her in, and be her adoptive mother for a while. Hopefully her search has ended.
Trill had hacked away her Thexian braids that bound her hair high, in Teir’dal columns of hate
It had been some time since Trill had performed. Unsure as to whether she would continue with her pursuit of fame and fortune, uncertain about what lies at her center anymore, she’d often phase in and out of sentience quoffing more vile ale than she could tolerate.
The road ahead had become fragmented, its dusty track bogged down with indecision.
The fire that once lit the way had all but burned out.
In an attempt to reshape her identity, Trill had hacked away her Thexian braids that bound her hair high, in Teir’dal columns of hate.
The time for hatred has passed.
Diluted through contact with others, a myriad of races and cultures and a diffusion of their reasoning and reckoning had supplanted her own.
The worst of it was, Trill now cared, very deeply about others.
Others that weren’t fixated on the gospel of anger.
Sipping more ale seemed to nullify the confusion, and make it clear to her that a change was underway. A change she must now embrace, a change she must commit to. A new age, a new family, a new name. And the mead will keep her sane.
Stepping into the sunlight, softening her features, Trill became Lull.
Shed a Tear in Runnyeye..
Composed and sung by Trill Siren, Battle Vocalist
A gauntlet run, of goblin hate on a bridge of wood, clumsily made through a door of steel, oval shaped you'll suffocate in nightmares draped Gnawed and scraped, by tooth and horn tusk fuelled pain, from gorehorn scorn Clay men beat, an earthen drum Swamped by trickster and brawler scum Something sees you, peers from the dark A single eye, stares so stark floats above ground, spots its mark lid and lash, its orb pockmarked Its gaze is cold, a deathly sight its toothed lid snaps, with deadly might an iris opens, to a darkened void spewing black mist, a poison to avoid Trailing tentacles, curl and twist tangled and forlorn, you must persist slash at the retina, poke at cornea avert its gaze and avoid its fear Finally puncture the occular globe slice up the lid, the eye is disrobed swiftly sever, the optic nerve gather your strength and muster reserve the minion has fallen, the Lord still stands Rulgax awaits you, with his evil demands cut a path through, his chamber is nigh Slay him and shed, a tear in Runnyeye... Slay him and shed, a tear in Runnyeye... Slay him and shed, a tear in Runnyeye...
A dark elven songstress of hypnotic prose Will enchant you softly until comatose Oceanic complexion with white hair in braid A songful calm and a plunge of the blade Amazed at the sight, to the shadows she fades A tune at twilight, a hot stabbing pain gasping for air, cleaving shoulderblade Melt into death to a lullaby of hate Succumb to the darkness, limp and dazed Crumple into soil, your dusty grave A parting lament from a daughter of hate.
A song I like to sing before I engage in combat, a song my Mother composed for me as a child learning to vocalise the spirit of hatred in the children of Innoruk.
I enjoy singing, I enjoy overpowering lesser races and coaxing them into mournful states so that my companions can quickly dispatch them.
I do not hide my love of intoxicating combat from anyone.
Yet as I have travelled, alone for the most part, I have softened in my loathing of others, I have been known to tolerate lesser races, simply out of necessity.
The dust on the road grinds hard at the vocal chords, you know. I am in search. Search for a community to join, to once again comfort myself with company, and with belonging.
Since leaving Freeport, I have been through arduous times, times that fuel my songs with lyrics but times that weaken my soul with weariness.
I search for place to recharge, a place to share, a place to be appreciated. I am currently within my twentieth and third phase of development as a combat vocalist. I have heard about an underground sect of Gnolls that deserve exploration and abuse, a place ripe for the picking. So I camp in and around the Thundering Steppes mainly, dangerous territory, full of those resistive to my laments.
Let me play for you, let me suffocate our enemies with dulcit tones of torment, so that we as a whole will be victorious. End my search. End my loneliness.
His body coloured with scarlet to ensure maximum fear in his enemy. Blood would run constantly over his thick skin.
Jellied flesh and broken bone slip and slide off the Adamantine plated thick set body. A constant flow of blood seemed to trickle across the surface making the contstruct glisten and shimmer in the twilight. Assembled and given life in the great Forge of House Cannith, this Fleshcleaver was birthed through magics thought impossible, its sole purpose to dismember fleshed opponents. Many Warforged were created as generic battle machines, kitted out with all manner of combat accessories to enable them to face other similarly equipped ‘forged. However, behind all battle hardened ‘forged troops were soft fleshed Masters conjuring their orders of war. Gore was assembled to strike hard at these fleshed leaders. His Adamantine plates could pierce and shred flesh even without the bladed weapons of Valenar blood steel they were adorned with. His body coloured with scarlet to ensure maximum fear in his enemy. Blood would run constantly over his thick skin. The warband Gore was assigned to, became known as the Strikeforge, a collection of fleshcleavers designed to act as strike troops in battle, dropped in behind enemy lines and afforded the purpose of stripping flesh from bone, spilling blood and cleaving the minds of the fleshed ones who control the ‘forged armies. Taking out the Masters slowed the advancement of the conjured troops. Each warband would be assigned a single master, one who would remotely control their position and combat goals. Always fine tuning the strike, adjusting the kills. After the demise of Cyre towards the end of the Last War, Strikeforge found itself decommissioned.
Fleshcleavers were deemed far too dangerous to be allowed into normal circulation. Many were dismantled. Some without the tight control of a Master were found to have turned renegade, following other less controlled Masters, even following other rogue ‘forged units as if they were fleshed leaders. Gore was lucky, he was traded to a small outpost requiring his strength primarily as a work unit. The Master he was assigned to, didn’t care of his blood soaked past, he was only concerned about how much lumber he could chop or stone he could split in a days work. Culling trees or stone did little for the Fleshcleavers state of mind. Battle tremours would take over him, and he would decimate houses and vehicles sub conciously. The tremours grew more feirce and darker, uncontrollable, his basic instinct, to cleave flesh, had come back to haunt him. A dark day indeed came about as Gore surfaced from a tremour having slain six fleshed workers. Blood trickled past his eyes as he realised what he’d done.
He would require a new Master. Someone who could command the Fleshcleaver mind
Immediate deactivation was demanded. As they assembled around him to dismember his body and unhook his mind with dispelling magics. Something inside him engaged. His inner core split slighty. The tremours that took six lives had only been a taste of what power could be unleashed with a Fleshcleaver unhinged. Gore collapsed in a pool of blood. He rested. The bodies would be noticed with the coming daylight. The blood would run into the water supplies and give away his position. He would require a new Master. Someone who could command the Fleshcleaver mind. Someone who could contain a killing machine that walked a fine line between dutiful service and tremour induced chaos. Gore would search out such a Master. Eternally.
The mud stained water flowed over the palm of her hand like some brown quicksilver. Odd as it was, to see liquid dance in the air swilling around and spilling to the ground from a female hand of stealth. “There is no refill here, these contaminated waters can not be drunk” Trill murmured to herself. Neither her thirst will be quenched, nor her rasping throat will be soothed from these waters. It is a dry day indeed.
She was acutely aware of the presence of the Orc guard patrolling these circular walkways. Their foul stench alone is enough to alert her of their proximity. She should move on. Perhaps creep further away from the entrance to the castle. Dethfist Castle, a pockmark on the landscape proclaiming Orc domination of this area. Whilst from afar the castle itself looks a building of impressive size and menace, close to the horned banks of its moat, it looks dreary, brown as the muddied sands of this wasteland of Zek. An area stripped of all merit by the heavy clubfeet of the Orcan army that fight, scuff and tread all over it.
There is a prize sought after in these Dethfist outskirts. These dim-witted Orcs keep their treasures locked up tight, but they do not have the imagination nor the ingenuity to then hide their prized chests. They see it befitting to post more guards around such booty. They have the men to spare, they do not have the intelligence to spare. Today, Trill will harvest the fruits of the Orc labourers. She will have their treasure.
Trill skirts the periphery of a simple Orcan camp. No more than a scorched sheet thrown over crudely whittled staves. There are two Orc guardsmen lolling about, brokenly grunting to each other in their hateful native tongue. She cannot make out what they say, they seem very much without wit or humour, their snarls and barks are like the monitor lizard skin scraped over putrefied bark of a tree. She notices one of them is well armed, at the hip. He has a sharp hand-scythe that has blackened blood stains forming a crown along the sharpened edge. This weapon could inflict a deep wound if swung with enough brute force. The other slightly smaller Orc seemed to have no weapon on his person at all. Which seemed very odd. All Orcan guards must be armed, especially if on patrol or guarding trinkets of worth. Still, it is a good day to have the misfortunes of the Orcs fall at the hands of this Teir’Dal songstress.
Without as much as a whisper of air, Trill launched herself from behind the makeshift tent, vaulting out of her state of stealthed cloaking, landing squarely behind the armed Orc guard. She arrived as softly as a floating feather, her falchion sunk slowly and surgically into the shoulder of the Orc. So sharp an incision, it seemed as if he didn’t notice the violation of his body, until the blade made contact with bone. Trill lifted her second blade from the base of the Orc’s spine up into his thoracic space. This swift pincer movement of scalpel sharp blades, had the Orc pinned in pain. He flinched heavy to the left, a repetitive jerking motion, obviously inspired by the severing of a motor nerve near his spine. He howled breathlessly, guttural and startled. He made for his circular blade at his side. Trill however was hyper aware, she hums ancient tunes of alertness and they seem to make her catch all movement and action at a slowed pace. Finishing the scissor movement of her blades, she spots him going for his weapon, and quickly rakes her falchion down to sever the belt around his waist, dropping his weapon to the ground with a heart stopping “clang”. Trill heel-stomps on the back of the Orc’s knee, in order to knock him to the floor, preparing him for the killing blow. He dutifully collapses to his haunches, dazed and prostrate. Trill notices the other Orc has now mobilised and is grabbing for what looks like a double bladed halberd. “I have time” she thinks. Trill jabs her falchion downward into the top of the worshipping Orc’s skull, rooting him to the floor. His face relaxes, his tongue is loose and unfurls over his teeth. Blood tainted spittle oozes from his mouth and drips onto the muddy floor forming jewelled beads of death. Whipping her Spatha in a sawing motion across the Orc’s neck, she decapitates him where he knelt. His body folds forward and hits the dirt with a damp “thud”. His head still attached to her Falchion, she flicks her wrist grudgingly and the head slides off the bloodied blade and lands between the headless corpses thighs. A befitting end to a useless brute claiming to be a warrior.
She sensed the swing, the blade almost sang a song as it twirled through the air, “could he have not attempted a more silent strike?” she sniggered. “I could have heard that attack from the dockside in Zek”. As if in dance, Trill drops to her left knee, as the halberd blade performed a remarkably wide arc above her head. A quick slash across the legs of the advancing orc inflicted enough pain to distract him from another wild swing. As if from the depths of her soul, Trill began resonating a most powerful lyric, an ancient chant that crescendo’s into a most unpleasant scream. It started at a baseline much below the normal range of Trills voice, as if her vocal chords had been replaced with a man’s. She was now a deep baritone, and in no time whatsoever, the range had hit soprano and beyond, this was no ordinary song within the confines of most mortals vocal prowess. This was from the ancients themselves, channelled through a rather attractive Teir’Dal mouthpiece. Ear splittingly shrill, the orc was stunned, he floundered about a little, trying to shake the buzz he’d just been hit with. Trill brought the scream to a whisper, and finished with a few words chattered spritely at the end. She delivered the words “el kissa kl’eril cretok” which roughly translates to “die swiftly useless orc”. The Orc, now settled again, takes another swing at Trill, she flicks her top half to the right and the halberd sings another windy song of missed opportunity, as if his weapon was cursing his ineptitude at striking. Using his momentum gained on the swing, she pushes the orc to the ground, not an easy feat for a small Teir’Dal female, however, with her strengthening tunes behind her, and a hooked foot around the Orc’s leg, he was mainly off balance anyway. Trill lands on top of him, using her blades for leverage, as they are jammed againt his Halberd shaft. She turns her wrists forward and both her falchion and spatha start cutting into the flesh around his shoulders. His Armour seemed to part before the blades with surprising ease. Unexpectedly, he shunted her to the side with his arched knees. Trill rolled several times wafting great clouds of dust about her as she alternately dug into the dirt and tossed it with her blades. “That orc has some spirit” she mused. The Orc lunged at her as she lay on the ground, it was a half hearted move, he could hardly walk but a step or two, pain vexing him heavy. Trill expertly flipped over to her feet, lither than any feline form. The Orc missed her yet again. She raised her spatha high, and grimaced, showing her pearly white teeth as an animal would, almost as a taunt to the Orc to try again. A taunt the Orc was happy to ignore. He stood there quivering with pain, using his Halberd as a resting post, breathing heavily and laboured. As if startled his head shot up, fixed on Trill’s face. His eyes were wide open, and in a state of panic. His body was trembling uncontrollably. He started a howl, an Orcish wail of pain. And it was silent. He collapsed dead to the floor. Trill smirked knowingly. “Never underestimate the delayed power of the ancient Lanet’s Scream of Excruciating Pain” she thought smugly.
Looking around, the area was free of any prying Orc eyes, for the moment. She quickly frisked the Orc corpses and found what she was looking for. A key. A blood encrusted key, hopefully destined to open that treasure chest they guarded so poorly. She hurried to the container, with anticipation. With greed. She sensed there was a mechanism of trickery protecting the chest, a device of some sort that had been placed over it to deal suffering to anyone who tries to open it. “Good, there must be something worth stealing in here, if the Orc’s had an engineer create a trap for it” Trill mumbled. Using her nimble fingers and chanting a song of focus, she managed to disarm the poison mechanism without triggering it. As she turned the large key in the lock, a comforting click followed by silence, assured her she’d found the correct key. She tucked the blades of her falchion and spatha into the corners of the chest’s hood and started lifting the heavy and rather crudely decorated lid. A glow streamed out of the gap, giving off a bright green corona, she lifted it more and the light intensified. She could just make out a….
heavy blow to the back of Trill’s head, she blacked out for an instant, her vision impaired, the view danced as if she’d drunk more dwarven ale than she could handle. The chests lid slammed shut with a crack, that jolted Trill awake once more. She’d been hit again, she couldn’t move. An Orc had his clubfoot spread over the back of her legs. If she did not muster enough strength and focus to move, this would be her resting place. Another blow would crack her skull cleanly open, and the Orcs would revel in scooping her intelligent soaked grey matter into their greedy mouths. Her last chance. She expelled all the air she could from her lungs dealing a Wail of Woe, an ancient song used to interrupt fighters and wizards alike. It played on their mental anguish, dancing a merry jig of confusion. She could hear the Orcs pause, and then stumble after the wave from the wail hit them. Her legs were free for a second, and she curled herself up and rolled sideways away from the bludgeoning Orc. Still dizzy herself she looked up to see the menace on her back. She was startled and shaken to see at least five bloodorcs from the Gorynn tribe, all coming to their senses and focussing their snarling faces upon her. Bloodorcs are deep claret in colour and are one of the fiercest branches of the Orc blood line. They often wear no armour as a sign of their bloodlust and to display their bright red threatening skintones. How had she not noticed them? Or even hear them? They are not renowned for stealth or subtlety. Perhaps her greed had clouded her senses for a while? It is now a dark day indeed, for she has to dispatch all five to get to her quarry and she has already taken too many blows to the head. Quick thinking is required. Fast reactions and resonant songs.
Laying a Lanet’s Excrutiating Scream on what looks like their leader, she lands a cheap shot on him, to stun him enough whilst she readies herself to deal with the others. Four red Orcs run at her. She tangles with the first, blocking his axe with her spatha, another to her right, chops down with a sickle, caught tidily with her falchion. Her focus is now on the third Orc rushing in wielding a large spiked mace, she twitters out a bar or two of Verlien’s Keen of Woe, enough to slow his tread and keep him at bay for a second or two more. But the fourth Orc has already landed a body blow to her side. Her armour took most of the shock however, it does knock the wind out of her, and lays a pregnant pause in her next choral onslaught. Withdrawing down to her knees, she opens hers voice box wide and lets out a gutteral caterwaul in the form of a Dissonant Rhythm. Injecting pain into the minds of the whole group like a heated knife melts Freeportian butter. A funeral chant is quickly placed on the fifth Orc as he enters the affray, and his eyes open wide, his mouth gapes open like he has seen his own death. He flees the battle momentarily. The Orc leader has now gathered himself once again, and bludgeons Trill’s shoulder with his mallet, missing her head, thankfully. Trill recoils downwards again, trying to fall with the blow to prevent any bone damage. She sweeps the floor with her blades, arms flailing counter to each other, so that all the Orcs in the current proximity get two hacks across the lower legs, they fall either backwards or down to their knees. Trill squirms into position to deliver two killing blows simultaneously. The spatha is twirled in a circular fashion about an Orc at her left, his neck is opened and his head lolls off to the side still attached. Meanwhile without focussing on the event, Trill pokes the falchion upward to her right, skewering an Orc through the throat into his skull, his eyes tip upwards and his life bleeds away from him. Taking stock, “Two down, one fled - but will return soon, and a leader who is most skilled with the mallet” thought Trill. Once again recoiling from the situation, there is an Orc at her front, roaring with berserker rage, his spittle dots her face most unpleasantly. She blocks his strike down with her spatha, but his blow is hard and forceful enough, that she is knocked backwards, sparks flying from the swords connection. The Orc is clearly going to jump on top of her body and dig his blade into her exposed neck, taking away her ability to sing again, and bringing a swift death upon her. Fuelled by this abhorrent thought she bursts out a quick line from Luda’s Fiendish Howl, it is enough to shake the Orc on his descent, enough of a break to raise her falchion and embed it into his groin on his way down. She takes great pleasure in killing Orc’s in this most embarrassing way. The Orc falls further onto her blade and she has to release it and roll out. The falchion bursts through the Orc and juts out from his back as he hits the ground flat on his ugly red face. He is whimpering softly and bleeding into the dirt.
The Orc Leader is now upon her. His strength is enough to restrain her movement, her arms clamped tight against her waist, spatha waggling like a loose limb. The Leader is gnawing at her neck with his teeth, she can feel the sharp needle points digging in and scraping her skin, she’d be massively gored if it wasn’t for the small links of her armour providing a barrier to the bite. Her torso is being crushed, slowly, but methodically, every slight exhale of breath allowing the Leader to tighten his grip on her. Trill kicks wildly with her legs but the leader has restrained victims before, he has learned well from the various constrictor snakes that lurk in the desert. She cannot get a sound out to help her situation. Muted and vulnerable. The bloodorc that fled in fear has regained some confidence now and is heading their way, he seems insistent that he administers the final blow. Trill’s strength is being sapped, anoxia is taking hold, her tunes of prowess and boosting have faded and are but memories drifting over the hazed mist of the moat. With a last desperate surge of willpower, her head spinning through lack of oxygen, Trill manages to lash out with her feet and knock the advancing Orc off balance enough that he stumbles and shoulder charges the Leader, all three collapsing to the floor. Trill is now sandwiched between two angry Orcs, although the Leaders grip has slackened slightly due to the shock of the fall. Trill manages a short burst of song, enough to stagger the heavy Orc on top into rolling off her. But this release gives the Leader time to tighten up again, to tighten as hard as he can, Trill feels her grip on reality shift a moment, she starts to darken around the corners of her vision, the Orc Leader bites down on her again, and the mail of her armour gives way, he’s in, he tastes her flesh ravenously, an embrace of death. As Trill faints in and out of consciousness, she hears the Leader barking commands to his soldier, presumably ordering him to slay her carefully, since she was laying across his chest in his vice like grasp. The surviving bloodorc straddles the Leader and Trill, he holds a crude blade under her chin, and prepares to swipe it quickly to bleed her from the throat. As the rough edge makes its first tear into her delicate blue flesh, she sees her father’s corpse on the floor of her Freeportian house. She see’s his spirit leave the body and come over to her, a mere cherubic girl, her fathers spirit wraps his arms around her with whispering silence, and suddenly she feels she can let go now. Her time has come. Her fathers spirit weeps, his tears bathe her face. She can breathe again….
The drips on her face where not tears from her slain fathers spirit, but they were spillage of red hot blood. Blood from the Orc standing over her. Except that Orc had gone, his corpse was at the side of her, his head was cleaved in two, down the middle. The Leaders grip on her relaxed slowly, in a controlled measured way. She took the deepest intake of breath she could and kicked herself over to the side. The Leaders body was vibrating, struggling to live. She looked up and saw the most welcome and beautiful sight she has ever seen. It was one of the Watchmen from the Watchguard of her guild Femme Divinity. The men who protect and serve the Divine Sisterhood. Not only was it a watchman, but it was the leader of the Watchguard, her Champion. His name is Varixx. He had a strangling grip around the Orc Leaders throat and he did not seem to want to let go. The Orc Leader was gurgling in his own frantic spittle, trying to grasp a breath to live. She saw Varixx’s sword embedded deep within the Orc Leaders shoulder. Varixx must have pinned him there so he could exact revenge, by killing the Leader in the very same way the Orc was trying to slay Trill. Trill dragged herself up and dusted herself off, weakened by the ordeal, but attempted to regain her Divine manner in front of the Champion. “I’m glad you came Varixx, you have impeccable timing” she said gratefully. “We are at your service, My Lady” said Varixx, as he releases the dead Orc Leaders neck and recovers his sword and his composure. He bows very low in respect.
Fade was chosen as a name for my elven bowmaiden character, because I wanted a short memorable word that embodied elusive precision with a bow. Alone, she would be a hunter, long ranged kills, that would come out of no-where and be unseen. I latched onto the idea that her ability in a forest to meld into the background and stalk from the tree canopy. I searched long and hard for a word that would symbolise this blending in to her natural environment. She fades into the forest. And there we had it. Her first name. Fade.
With her surname, I wanted to celebrate the bow. But I wanted to incorporate some sort of darkness into her personality, she was to hunt by the light of the moon. Dare I say it, to flit between the shadows of the Twilight. Again, the imagery of the crescent moon, lent itself very well to the arched bow. Thus Fade Moonbow was born.
In Fade’s very first outing as a roleplaying character, on a Neverwinter Nights Persistent Server (ShadowRealm), she was cruelly affected by a bug in the game, that had her head disappear! This torment so young in her development was crafted into a backstory of some sort, and became her right of passage amongst the community on the server. Here are the snippets of story I poorly penned all those years ago.
Fade was a most beautiful elven girl, her natural visage typified the elven race, everyone would comment on it, everyone from dwarf to Orc could appreciate it. She was blessed, some would say. As she grew and nurtured a desire to protect the good from the terrors of these uncertain times.
She took up the bow, and indulged her passion for the living breathing arched wood that could seal the darkness in light. Dark things shuffled in the twilight, they colluded and plotted against her. One particular nightwitch begrudged the perfection in Fade’s face. This hag managed to take possession of a lock of Fade hair, from the claws of an aspiring demonic werewolf, some epidermal skin attached to the hair, gave the dreary sorcerer enough source biological material to concoct a curse to bring Fade’s enlightenment to an end.
She took up the bow, and indulged her passion for the living breathing arched wood that could seal the darkness in light.
It was during an evening celebration of elvensong, when Fade danced amongst the most handsome of elven men, that the hag laid down her shrouded curse. As soon as the curse had taken hold, Fade’s head disappeared from view. Her beauty vanished. As the startled onlookers stumbled to a halt, Fade was a headless body prancing carelessly among them. Some let out yelps of fear, some shouted curses of their own, a bedevilment lay before us. Fade stopped and stared at the moonlit reflection in the elven fountain of life. Her heart dipped into the water and floated away. She threw a woolen cape over her head and fled to her house, to collect all she could carry, her bow taking pride of place as her crutch to carry her burden away from these beautiful people. Since then, she has been reviled as a creature of evil, even though her true nature is one of pure good.
She stumbled into ShadowRealm, and was befriended by a Sister of the Light, a young cleric girl, who went by the name of Sister Ann Bright. Her purity lifted Fade from the darkness of headless monstrosity, and she was brought before the divine misttress Sweetblade. Since her bow was still sturdy, Sweetblade conjured an archers helm, for Fade to wear to cover the shame of the curse. Fade’s tears now drip silently behind a metallic prison, but her search to retrieve her identity and blessed beauty will never end.
<i>(OOC: I installed the CEP head pack into my overide directory, then created Fade on the ShadowRealms Sweetblade server, no one can see my head – although I could. So I ditched the head pack files from the overide directory and now I can’t see my head. I’m guessing I’ve created a character with a non standard head and now its not being displayed – is there a way to somehow alter the head of an existing character? If not, I’m guessing Fade’s roleplay will have to be the explanation for her apparent deformity – which might not be a bad thing.)</i>
Really enjoyed playing on the SR Sweetblade server BTW. keep up the good work, everyone.
As the character was being moulded through adversity, I began to enjoy writing about her, and so penned another ode detailing her “cure”.
A mighty conjurer telepathically connected with Fade’s Elven senses on a higher plane of existence. The mystic promised a cure for her curse, but only after a physical and spiritual purging, could this remedy be applied. With some in trepidation, Fade agreed to be metaphysically transported to the conjurer’s shelter. The thought of being able to breath fresh forest air without the metallic twang from behind the helmet was enough to make her almost giddy. She slipped into the ethereal atmosphere for little beyond a second and appeared before the mighty conjurer with a jolt of her soul that shook her nerves for one moment. She clasped her bow tighter as if only it could protect her now. The conjurer was soft spoken and looked remarkably younger than she’d first expected.
The purge must begin before we can lift the curse. Quickly she shed all her equipment, removing the helmet to reveal the grotesque sight of her almost decapitated naked body. She trembled as deposited her bow, her only source of comfort through the years before. Her last vestige of self. The kind conjurer waved a little, with slight of hand, and Fade dropped to the floor asleep. She dreamt of nothing, in fact the purge itself seemed to be one big black hole with no escape. Emptiness. No sooner had she forgotten who she was, lost in some macabre wilderness, then she was wide awake again. Fully clothed in rough leather, it took her a moment to readjust. She could not remember her name. Who was she?
Another slight of hand from the conjurer and she was climbing steps, re-learning everything she had once known, her archery skills tingled in her fingertips, she smelt the sweet smell of the yew and fresh sap covering of her bow, she could pinch the fibres from her bowstring and remember how to nock arrows in rapid succession. She was overcome with empathy for the animals of the world, she longed to call her forest mate Bara the Brown Bear, she longed to comfort him with her song again. As incredibly dizzying as it was, it was also reassuring that she could feel the seasons mature within her, climbing her body like rampant ivy, as the conjurer dropped his hand to his sides, the process was done. Fade had become whole again. She clutched her face, picked up a potion bottle and peered within the reflection. Her beautiful face was there again, shining back at her, almost luminescent. she could see her nose if she crossed her eyes. She danced. The conjurer chuckled.
It was to tears of joy that she said her farewell to the conjurer, reseating her arrows, and adjusting her armour, she was ready again to face the world, with all its dangers, but this time she could hold her head up high, this time she could smile at those she loved and grimace at those she loathed, and her enemies filled with darkness and hate would see the elven piousness on her face as she filled them with arrows of justice.
The conjurer, his name was Kai, and she vowed to name her firstborn after him, in memory of his deeds that day.
(OOC: The actual bug in the game content triggered in me a desire to pursue the development of these character in and out of roleplaying games. I started to enjoy the descriptive and explorative writing. Massaging my imagination, and giving life to heroic characters of my choosing. It wasn’t long before I was off in other games, bringing Fade along with me. Over the years she has evolved, but there is a core of her personality that stays with me. The dark huntress. The bowmaiden. Wielding a moon shaped bow.)